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Wednesday, February 28. 2018
While forging a somewhat different path, this reminds me of The Vision of the Anointed: Self-Congratulation as a Basis for Social Policy
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I want to be Thomas Sowell when I grow up.
I had a conversation with one of the Anointed at church this Sunday. I'm having trouble clearing my irritation.
This thread, regarding the elites, is from October before the 2016 election.
The "system" has not been kind to the middle class at any age. Obamacare is designed to take advantage of the young, Federal Reserve policy is designed to take care of Wall Streeters while hammering those in retirement, trade policy is designed to take care of big corporations at the expense of " working men and women"; those who cry and whine the most are favored by our incumbent; government welfare policy has destroyed a large portion of the black population; etc., etc, ad nauseum.
Trump is certainly the primal scream candidate, while Clinton, her policies, and campaign tactics, is right out of the elite system playbook.
We, the people, know it is time for a major change in the way the country has been governed the last 30 years. The question is:are we brave enough to take a chance on the change maker?
buwaya puti said...
The Supreme Court is supremely important.
Its the only thing in the way of complete executive/bureaucratic rule by fiat. The bureaucracy/executive agencies are the greatest power in the land, bigger than their figurehead chief, better integrated with the biggest money in politics than any politician, and each with its own agenda that has nothing to do with the public interest.
And that huge machine owns the Democratic Party, its not the other way around.
The Supreme Court is purely partisan. All the analysis of creative arguments and the wit within decisions is hobbyist stuff, you all might as well be WWF fans; all you need to know for practical purposes is what side a justice is on, these days, who appointed them. Its more predictable than Congressional votes. The next President will either reinforce its power vs the bureaucracy or entirely remove the entire system of checks and balances. If the Supreme Court calls sows ears silk purses, then it is so, there is no recourse.
Congress is utterly useless, it can't stop the executive or the bureaucrats. They have had a dozen sneering department chiefs openly defying them since 2011. Now with the most blatant offender as President I bet they will never again show up.
The moment Clinton is elected, it will be bureaucratic Christmas, and for everyone else the witching hour. They will war on all US industry because it is their internal goal to destroy it all, they get insider points for wrecking.
Everything else is also on the line, because they will be able to make any rule they like.
They can regulate Althouse blog out of business for instance, why not.
10/2/16, 8:35 PM
Young Hegelian: One major issue with the elites vs the "masses" that neither Beck nor Moore discuss but that I think is very much at the heart of the problem is that the elites are so bad at running things!
Bingo. I guess it's a feature in any Decline and Fall that the elite loses sight of the fact that it has to deliver on its side of the social contract with the lower orders - if not prosperity then at least some measure of stability and security. An elite has to prove its claim to elite status, which involves rather more than "fuck you, prole, you answer to me, I don't answer to you".
You'd think this would be obvious, but I guess decaying elite castes always reach the point where the lord remembers only the serf's duty to kiss his ass, and forgets completely his reciprocal obligation to fight for his serf's security.
They've got these degrees from these hi-falutin schools, they've networked out the wazoo, & they think they shit chocolate mousse. But they're awful at actually getting anything done!
Oh, they get things done, all right, just not anything that protects or improves the lives of the people over whom they claim the right to govern.
10/2/16, 9:10 PM
David Begley: Either Hillary Clinton loses or we are completely fucked as a country.
I don't use this language lightly.
Oh, but it will be interesting. If Hillary wins the hubris of the proglodytes will be a wonder to behold. Think they lack any sense of prudence and restraint now? Just wait. They will lose their minds. They won't be able to help themselves.
10/2/16, 9:18 PM
Even though they don't necessarily like him or agree with him so much, I think that... they love the idea of blowing up the system.... [F]or some strange reason, see Donald Trump as their, as their means to get back at, at, at this system.
They can see and describe what is happening but are always either coy or badly off the mark over the question of why Trump is happening.
The answer is that Trump is happening because of Michael Moore – and the NYT – and the National Review – all of academia – all of the entertainment industry - all of the “intelligentsia” - and Lester Holt – and CNN, MSNBC, NBC, CBS, ABC and last but not least, FoxNews. And that’s why they cannot comprehend the why of Trump.
Beck is a loon.
Trump is a more likely to be pivotal but his now almost certain inability to get anything done in collaboration with congress means he will most likely achieve very little.
The GOP Congress, which has alternated between hopelessness and haplessness in their time in office so far, will be putty in the hands of President Trump. The Republicans in Congress can’t even effectively cope with the Democrat minority, much less a President Trump with a bully pulpit to sell his legislative initiatives.
The great geopolitical powers of the world are backed into corners and eyeing each other warily in a 3-way Clint Eastwood Mexican standoff.
The same as it ever was.
10/3/16, 2:23 AM
Thinking armed revolt could be a solution to a political problem is insane. Here's one reason why (spoiler alert, there are others.) I firmly believe that the military would remain on the sidelines in the event of a widespread, polpular revolt. I don't believe they would have a choice because thinking that a US rebellion would remain an internal affair is equally insane. Just as the Soviets encouraged the Warsaw uprising, then waited across the Vistual River for the Nazis to destroy the Polish right before marching in, Russia or China would sit by and allow our "patriots" to destroy the ability of the country to wage war, then take the opportunity to go through the US like shit through a goose. So, the military would be forced to keep its eye on the wolf at the door rather than joining the dogs yapping around the inside of the house. When things degenerate to the point that an appropriate national security posture against external threats cannot be maintained due to the internal chaos (a near certainty,) I would think a coupe would be the fall back position, followed by a quick alliance with the most suitable internal faction and then whatever it took to neutralize the remaining faction(s). In short, before people talk about revolution it would be useful to carefully consider the potential havoc associated with what Rumsfield called the "known unknowns" and "unknown unknowns" waiting in Pandora's box, because no plan survives the first shot and no one knows what's waiting in that box. Hence the reason it's insane.
10/3/16, 4:38 AM
duane oldsen said...
duane oldsen said...
1) The Middle East has been burning for five years.
I can't recall a time when the ME was especially stable, and thanks to fracking and increased efficiency we are now better insulated from the drama than we have been in decades.
The Middle East is still exporter of large portions of the world's oil, and geopolitical pivot point of the World-Island that is Afro-Eurasia. Anything shipping or moving East-West on the World-Island passes either through or near the MENA regions.
2) Russia is on the march in Syria and the Ukraine, but has maybe five years of functional economy left to it.
This seems a self-limiting problem, it is already a zombie economy.
Nope. Its exacerbating. Russia is junior partner is the Sino-Russian attempt to build a replacement for the post-WW2 world order via the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), replacements for the G-20 and WTO/IMF systems.
China isn't in great shape either, but both partners are on the march and the junior partner desperately needs a short victorious war sooner rather than later to grab some loot and prop up its regime.
That can only promote global instability.
4) Europe is being overrun by the largest volkswanderung since the Goths.
This is BS. The Europeans are perfectly capable of running their own countries without input from the US.
The competence or incompetence of Europe's leadership is irrelevant. The EU zone is destabilizing due to migration, potentially violently.
7) The great geopolitical powers of the world are backed into corners and eyeing each other warily in a 3-way Clint Eastwood Mexican standoff.
As ever. You should read Orwell.
You should read Norman Angell. We live in yet another age of Great Illusion.
911 was another Tangier Crisis, prequel and harbinger to WW1, but not the real deal.
None of these seems to be a great crisis in the making, except possibly for the excess of geriatrics. As Japan and Italy have shown, western style economies do not function well in these circumstances but they don't seem to respond with radical social upheaval either.
Western societies do not respond with social upheaval?
On the contrary, they do so like clockwork. Every 80 to 100 years or so.
How long has it been since the last round started up? 77 years, counting from 1939. 102 years, counting from 1914 if you treat WW1-2 as a single conflict with a timeout. A treatment that is quite sensible, as the previous European conflicts lasted about 25-30 years each (The French Revolution, 1789-1815, The 30 Year's War, 1618-1648).
Together, the circumstances I have outlined are recipe for a meltdown of the antebellum global order into a new period of mass conflict. Did you note that the years I listed upthread were all one year before previous rounds began?
Joel Kotkin has rung the warning bell for awhile now.
Are liberal elites using cities to create a feudal society?
Well, the multinational megacorps and transnational elites would sell your rights and sovereignty down the river for a buck, as avidly as they would sell their own mothers. Just to elaborate, the nationalist, transnationalist battle seems to be manifest in this election cycle, a variation on K Street vrs Main St, in the guise of Bernie and the Donald (I know, I know, a paradox and a mystery.).
Multinational megacorps and industries, that have worldwide supply chains and a worldwide consumer base, walk to the beat of a different agenda, along with their media and political minions. At best they see everyday Americans as quaint, parochial, and archaic; at worst, they see American sovereignty and rights as an obstruction to “International Commerce Uber Alles”. Even, if they are American by origin, it is an accident of birth; they shouldn’t be counted on to be empathetic to Americans or loyal to American values. They have and will try to foist accommodation to alien laws, mass migration, ecological damage, ……as long as they are the beneficiaries.
Everything has tradeoffs, and much of this is inevitable and understandable as technology ripples through our world, just as it did after the spike was driven at Promontory Point. However, people need to understand that “International Capitalism” is not necessarily compatible with American sovereignty.
One of my favorite programs is "Ultimate Restoration"; it involves the efforts taken to restore the wonders of the steam and coal age and early combustion engine. I teared up when Kansas City's 1927 Ahrens Fox firetruck rolled again.( It was taken offline in the 60s.)
The guys that built that era were very smart, awesome even, but they are an after thought in ours. Our modern elites are book and theory smart, as well as glib social networkers but I wonder how much of that is utter dependence on modern technology. They can drive a car but couldn't build a car or use a relational database but not build one. I am not saying they aren't clever and maybe they go camping with their freeze dried meals and cell phones, but I question that most of them could sustain themselves more than 2 weeks in a world without electricity and electronics.