“Political correctness is communist propaganda writ small. In my study of communist societies, I came to the conclusion that the purpose of communist propaganda was not to persuade or convince, not to inform, but to humiliate; and therefore, the less it corresponded to reality the better. When people are forced to remain silent when they are being told the most obvious lies, or even worse when they are forced to repeat the lies themselves, they lose once and for all their sense of probity. To assent to obvious lies is in some small way to become evil oneself. One's standing to resist anything is thus eroded, and even destroyed. A society of emasculated liars is easy to control. I think if you examine political correctness, it has the same effect and is intended to.”
― Theodore Dalrymple
It is time to stop accepting and repeating the lies coming from the left, particularly the "green" lies, the climate hysteria lies, and the Covid lies. It is time to take back the nation from the dangerous leftist before they trigger a civil war.
The Green New Deal will Impoverish America | Newgeography.com
Energy independence was always the goal; until we achieved it, the progressives then found a new goal, the destruction of our affordable energy infrastructure.
Could COVID Exodus Speed the Heartland Revival? | Newgeography.com
Covid, climate hysteria, and skyrocketing energy costs will drive a heartland revival and the death of the progressive coastal states.
Sadly, we may go through a civil war to find the outcome. The progressives have created a new cult and will not let it go easily. They demand that all others worship at the cult of Covid and Climate hysteria and give up all modernity. The intent is to take us all on a three-hour tour to Gilligan's Island.
Gov. Kate Brown expected to move 15 counties to ‘extreme risk,’ shutter indoor dining in Multnomah and Clackamas counties
Fear and loathing in Portlandia run amok once again as foolish progressives cannot understand the difference between disease and PCR testing false positives. Oregon's fool of a Governor is bound and determined to destroy the economy of Portlandia, the state's largest city. Fine. But when this nonsense is all over, please remember who it was that destroyed the economy and impoverished the people, all based on vaporware "science" and superstition; for the progressives out there, that would be progressives, Democrats, and their followers.
So, what is the real state of the Covid in the world? The video below provides a brief and concise update. It shows that the real goal of the hysterical pandemic mongers is to create fear and consolidate power through the erosion or elimination of civil rights and authoritarian power-grabbing via pandemic hysteria and climate hysteria.
The new totalitarians have come; they are the progressives/Democrats.
Biden’s Crony Anti-Infrastructure Plan | The American Spectator | USA News and PoliticsThe American Spectator | USA News and Politics
"'A crony anti-infrastructure plan” is, sadly, the best description of the Biden administration’s proposed $2.3 trillion infrastructure plan. It’s insanely expensive and unnecessary, especially coming, as it does, on top of last year’s fiscal insanity.
Over the past year, our leaders have spent $6 trillion in bailout and COVID-19 relief funds. They’ve driven local, state, and federal government spending up to 43.5 percent of GDP, meaning that we’re already in financial trouble. Now they want to top it off with trillions more of wasteful spending, describing it as “infrastructure” spending, which arguably everyone likes. But once you look at what’s in the bill, you realize that the label is mere marketing for more handouts to politicians’ friends and payments for pet projects.
A large share of the plan, for instance, is a massive handout to private companies. The proposal includes $300 billion to promote advanced manufacturing, $174 billion for electric vehicles, $100 billion for broadband, $100 billion for electric utility industry, and more. This is interesting since Democrats never miss an opportunity to rail against big corporations while professing their love for small companies. Yet they’re eagerly subsidizing their big corporate friends whether these companies need it or not.
And in most cases, they don’t, since they are big infrastructure investors already. AT&T, Verizon, and others are set to receive $100 billion for broadband despite their collective investment of more than $50 billion in broadband-related network infrastructure. The same is true of electric power companies, which are not only profitable firms but also massive investors in the electrical grid. In fact, during the pandemic, they actually increased their capital expenditures (or CapEx) to $141 billion from $121 billion. Yet they will also get $100 billion.
Freight railroads, which will get a share of that $80 billion, are very lucrative, too. As former budget director David Stockman explains in a recent newsletter, freight railroads “have prodigiously reinvested in tracks and rolling stock.” He adds that these companies don’t need help, “especially not Warren Buffett, who owns a big chunk of the Burlington Northern Santa Fe…. The latter, in fact, posted $23.5 billion of sales, $5.5 billion of net income and $3.6 billion of CapEx during 2019. And the figures for the other big publicly held railroad companies are similar.”
Biden’s plan also includes hundreds of billions that have nothing even remotely to do with infrastructure. One example is a $400 billion handout to expand access to long-term, home-, and community-based care services under Medicaid and extend its Money Follows the Person program. While this has nothing to do with infrastructure, The Wall Street Journal explains how it has everything to do with bolstering unions, writing that Biden’s proposal highlights that “his home-care plan would ‘create good middle-class jobs with a free and fair choice to join a union … and the ability to collectively bargain.’ This is where the SEIU comes in.” The Service Employees International Union, they write, “has been able to exploit Medicaid home-care programs to expand its membership with help from state Democratic lawmakers.”
Finally, this plan would be paid for by eliminating tax preferences for fossil fuel companies, raising the corporate tax rate to 28 percent from 21 percent, doubling the top capital gains rate, and imposing a large minimum tax on the overseas earnings of U.S. companies. To the extent that Democrats are trying to pay for this spending with taxes, they’re doing it in a way that belies their claim that this plan will result in a boost in quality infrastructure. That’s because, as the Cato Institute’s Chris Edwards reminds us, these tax hikes would punish the investors and corporations that drive infrastructure and own 65 percent of non-defense, nonresidential infrastructure. The federal government only owns 5 percent of it, with state and local governments owning 30 percent.
The Tax Foundation estimates that Biden’s tax increases would reduce investment in fixed assets by more than $1 trillion. That means fewer infrastructure investments, too. This is unfortunate since a 2016 Congressional Budget Office report finds that private-sector investments deliver twice the economic returns of federal investments. But as Edwards notes, “Biden’s proposed green and labor union regulations would further undermine infrastructure investment.”
There’s much more to say about this plan and its backers (who continue to assert that it will grow the economy and finally fix our allegedly “crumbling” infrastructure). But for now, just remember that it’s best described as a crony anti-infrastructure plan."
The Narcotic Of Unreality | The Z Blog
The benefit to the progressives is that it is all but impossible to argue with someone when they eschew logic, reality, and truth. Sadly, they seem to comprise a voting majority for now. This will lead nowhere good.
7 Ways The World Would Be Better Without Police
"Police are part of a system of oppression that is very systemic and oppressive. It's true-- our rich white sociology professor told us so. Some politicians are calling for us to "reimagine policing," but we think that's not far enough! It's time to imagine a world with no police!
Here are 7 reasons the world would be better without police.
1. There would be more doughnuts available for the rest of us - We're sick of showing up at the doughnut shop to find the police already came in and took all the best ones. Oppression at its finest.
2. Vigilante justice is way more fun - At least, according to the movies, it is. Why call the police when you can form your own posse and hunt down the evildoers yourself?
3. With speed limits not enforced, you can finally test the limits of your 2013 Honda Odyssey - Always wanted to see what this puppy could do!
4. There would be much more liberation of TVs from Walmart - Think about it: there are thousands of TVs, tennis shoes, and top-shelf liquor being held in captivity all across the nation. It's time to liberate these high-priced goods from their shelves!
5. Unlimited loitering outside 7-Eleven - You can stand out there for hours and no one will bother you. Heaven on earth!
6. You can yell in the library now - Not only that, but you can check out unlimited books and never bring them back with complete impunity.
7. All problems in the black community will go away - Everything wrong in the inner city is the cops' fault. If the cops go, everything will be solved. It's just that simple!
Isn't it fun to imagine? Now, all we have to do is vote in politicians who will promise to make all the cool things in our imagination come true. Get on it, people!"
How I Became a Libertarian
This is an excellent article, I recommend it highly.
When I was at Oregon State University, I took between 22 and 24 credit hours each term, usually split evenly between history and economics with one other course language and occasionally an elective course. Early on, I took an elective course in anthropology, and the professor was deeply interested in the Hunter/Gatherer tribe. His musings on the subject changed my understanding of how government and society form and function.
Like the author of the article, I too concluded that socialism and her sisters, Nazism, fascism, authoritarianism, progressivism, etc., were unworkable due to human nature, driven by early human evolution. In essence, I understood that the hunter/gatherer tribe could function in something like a communist model but only because the tribe and the individual were existentially entwined. By that, I mean the individual and the group were wholly dependent upon each other for survival.
The failure of socialism/progressivism is in the misunderstanding that human nature is incompatible with top-down authoritarian governance models.
Progressivism and its sisters are authoritarian forms of government. They are all modeled on feudalism and fail for the same reasons feudalism failed once individuals had the ability to create wealth. The truth is progressivism/socialism is feudalism, which replaces the agricultural economic model with the industrial economic model. The only stable form of feudalism or its children, progressivism, socialism, etc. is in a highly economically reduced form where 80% of the population are serfs, serving the needs and feeding the upper few percentages of the population with about 15% of the population acting as artisans, craftsmen, police and other necessary services.
We are not going back to the feudal model. Socialism fails because people will not be forced back into serfdom, and the economic collapse necessary to get them there is unacceptable to the ruling class of socialists. The result is either a Russian revolution against socialism like what happened from 1989-1991 in the Soviet Union or the Deng Xiaoping revolution against Maoism in China in the late 1970s and early 1980s.
In the USA today, the push towards socialism/progressivism is less a push towards the socio-economic model and more an attempt to retain the access to corruption and power the progressive politicians have carved out since the end of WWII. We live in a time when we need great changes politically, economically, and socially but the corrupt politicians are unwilling to allow these changes to happen because they realize they will lose power, the government will be permanently altered and weakened, and the access to graft and corruption by all of the current institutional players will be dramatically reduced.
"I did not become a libertarian because I was persuaded by philosophical arguments — those of Ayn Rand or F. A. Hayek, for example. Rather, I became a libertarian because I was persuaded by my own experiences and observations of reality. There were three important lessons.
The first lesson was my personal experience of socialism. The second was what I learned about the consequences of government intervention from teaching a course on financial intermediaries and markets. And the third lesson was what I learned about the origin and evolution of government from my research into the sources of economic progress in preindustrial Europe and China.
Lesson 1. My Personal Experience of Socialism
In my youth, I was a socialist. I know that is not unusual. But I not only talked the talk, I walked the walk.
Growing up in England as a foreign‐born Jew, I did not feel I belonged. So, as a teenager, I decided to emigrate to Israel. To further my plan, I joined a Zionist youth movement. The movement I joined was not only Zionist: it was also socialist. So, to fit in, I became a socialist. Hey, I was a teenager!
What do I mean by a socialist? I mean someone who believes that the principal source of human unhappiness is the struggle for money — “capitalism” — and that the solution is to organize society on a different principle — “from each according to his ability; to each according to his needs.” The Israeli kibbutz in the 1960s was such a society. The youth movement I joined in England sent groups of young people to Israel to settle on a kibbutz. When I was 18, I joined such a group going to settle on Kibbutz Amiad.
A kibbutz is a commune of a few hundred adults, plus kids, engaged primarily in agriculture but also in light industry and tourism. Members work wherever they are assigned, although preferences are taken into account. Instead of receiving pay, members receive benefits in kind: they live in assigned housing, they eat in a communal dining hall, and their children are raised communally in children’s houses, and can visit with their parents for a few hours each day. Most property is communal except for personal items such as clothing and furniture, for which members receive a small budget. Because cigarettes were free, I soon began to smoke!
Kibbutz is bottom‐up socialism on the scale of a small community. It thereby avoids the worst problems of state socialism: a planned economy and totalitarianism. The kibbutz, as a unit, is part of a market economy, and membership is voluntary: you can leave at any time. This is “socialism with a human face” — as good as it gets.
Being a member of a kibbutz taught me two important facts about socialism. The first is that material equality does not bring happiness. The differences in our material circumstances were indeed minimal. Apartments, for example, if not identical, were very similar. Nonetheless, a member assigned to an apartment that was a little smaller or a little older than someone else’s would be highly resentful. Partly, this was because a person’s ability to discern differences grows as the differences become smaller. But largely it was because what we received was assigned rather than earned. It turns out that how you get stuff matters no less than what you get.
The second thing I learned from my experience of socialism was that incentives matter. On a kibbutz, there is no material incentive for effort and not much incentive of any kind. There are two kinds of people who have no problem with this: deadbeats and saints. When a group joined a kibbutz, the deadbeats and saints tended to stay while the others eventually left. I left.
In retrospect, I should have known right away, from my first day, that something was wrong with utopia. On my arrival, I was struck by the fact that the pantry of the communal kitchen was locked.
Lesson 2. My Teaching — The Effects of Government Intervention
Although I was no longer a socialist, I was certainly not a libertarian. I believed in a market economy and the importance of incentives: I had begun to study economics. But economics also taught me that market outcomes, and society more generally, were often imperfect and that they could be improved by the judicious use of government power. I was a progressive.
Progressivism rests on two critical assumptions. The first is that we know how to improve society: “social science” provides us with a reliable basis for the necessary social engineering. The second critical assumption is that government is a suitable instrument for improving society. My second and third lessons taught me that these two critical assumptions were unfounded and unrealistic.
For many years, I have taught a course on the economics of the financial system; I have also written a textbook on the subject. Government regulation is an important topic in this course. The need for such regulation seems like a no‐brainer. The financial system is obviously unstable: look at all those crises, including the stock market crash of the 1930s and the financial crisis of 2008. Surely we need government regulation to stabilize the financial system? But looking at the evidence, I came to believe otherwise. I saw that the history of the U.S. financial system could be understood as a series of cycles: the government intervenes in the financial system; the financial system adapts to the intervention; this adaptation makes the system more fragile and unstable, eventually resulting in a crisis; the government responds to the crisis with additional interventions intended to stabilize the system, and we have begun the next cycle.
The first of these cycles in the United States began almost two centuries ago, in 1832, when President Andrew Jackson vetoed renewal of the charter of the Bank of the United States, the sole national bank.
A consequence of this action was that, subsequently, banking in the United States was regulated solely by the states. The states prohibited interstate branching and often prohibited branching within a state. As a result, banking developed in the United States as a system of thousands of small banks. Since small banks are far more likely to fail than large ones, the history of American banking was one of frequent banking crises and panics, culminating in the great banking crisis of the 1930s.
At the time, many argued (rightly) that the solution to instability of the banking system was to remove the regulatory obstacles to consolidation. However, Congress, catering to special interests, came up with a different solution: deposit insurance. Even President Roosevelt, not exactly a libertarian, understood that this was a bad idea. He realized that it would allow banks to engage in risky behavior with no danger of losing depositors, an example of a problem of insurance known as “moral hazard.” So began the second cycle.
The moral hazard problem expressed itself in banks cutting their capital ratios. Before deposit insurance, a typical bank had funded about 25 percent of its assets with its own capital. This had the effect of protecting depositors against losses on the bank’s loans. Consequently, depositors had paid close attention to their bank’s capital ratio. If it fell too low, they withdrew their deposits. However, with the creation of deposit insurance, depositors no longer cared about their banks’ capital ratios. Banks responded by steadily reducing them, thereby increasing their leverage and thus their return on equity. The fall in capital ratios also had the effect of making the banking system far more fragile in the face of a shock.
For decades, however, there was no shock. For unrelated reasons, the environment remained unusually stable. By the 1970s, capital ratios had fallen as low as 5 percent. Then, in the late ‘70s, a steep rise in interest rates caused a rash of bank failures, culminating in the savings and loan crisis of the early 1980s.
Regulators, rather than admitting that deposit insurance had been a mistake, responded by doubling down. To address the moral hazard problem, they instituted capital requirements to force banks to increase their capital ratios. They also introduced a new form of government guarantee: the doctrine of “too big to fail.” So began the third cycle.
It was adaptation to the new capital requirements that set up the financial system for the financial crisis of 2008. Because nonbank financial institutions were not subject to capital requirements, profits could be increased significantly by shifting lending from banks to nonbank lenders. This happened on a massive scale — especially with mortgage lending — leaving the financial system as a whole with a very low effective capital ratio and consequently in a very fragile state.
Then, in the 1990s, the federal government began to promote subprime mortgages, lending to borrowers who would not have otherwise qualified for a mortgage loan. Since the government implicitly guaranteed most of these mortgages, lenders considered them safe. As a result, many financial institutions — banks, securities firms, and others — invested heavily in these instruments. In 2006, the housing market turned down and subprime defaults began to mount, leading to a major financial crisis in 2008.
What is the lesson from all of this? It certainly seems that government intervention, far from stabilizing the financial system, has been a major cause of its instability. For example, the crisis of 2008 was not caused by “greed on Wall Street” but rather by incentives distorted by two centuries of government intervention.
Does this mean that without government intervention the financial system would have been stable, or at least more stable? To answer this question, a study by Charles Calomiris and Stephen Haber compared government intervention and financial system stability across countries. They found that, indeed, more intervention is associated with greater instability. Their most interesting comparison is between the United States and Canada — two economies that are similar in most respects, except that the Canadian government has intervened very little in its financial system. The result? Since the presidency of Andrew Jackson, the United States has experienced 12 major banking crises. In the same period, Canada has experienced not even one — not in the Great Depression, not in 2008.
The lesson for progressivism is clear: we don’t understand the economy and the effects of intervention well enough to be able to improve things. The economy is a complex system that adapts to intervention in ways that are inherently unpredictable. The consequences are rarely what we expect or desire. So, for me, the first pillar of progressivism crumbled. We don’t know how to make things better through government intervention.
Lesson 3. My Research — The Nature of Government The second pillar of progressivism is the belief that government is a suitable instrument for doing good. This pillar crumbled for me as a result of my research.
For some time, I have been developing a theory of economic progress based on the evidence of preindustrial Europe and preindustrial China. My theory differs from textbook economics in several ways. In particular, it suggests a very different understanding of government.
For textbook economics, economic activity means production. However, looking at the historical evidence, there are two other ways that people make a living — two other economic activities. The first is commerce, buying and selling the goods that others produce. The second is predation, taking by force the goods that others produce or trade.
Economic progress can be understood in terms of the different effects of commerce and predation. Commerce makes it easier for people to trade with one another. The resulting expansion of trade leads to increased productivity, which creates opportunities for further expansion of trade. Economic progress, therefore, is a self‐perpetuating process. Why, then, isn’t every nation wealthy? The answer is predation. Predation slows, stops, and even reverses economic progress. And the principal source of predation is governments.
Textbook economics has no explicit discussion of what government is or how it works. It simply assumes that government is a kind of benign spirit ready and willing to solve our problems — a kind of fairy godmother. The historical evidence, however, suggests otherwise.
Government is an organization created to deploy force, either to engage in predation (predatory government) or to protect a population against predation (associational government). In preindustrial Europe, the governments of kings and princes were predatory governments; think the Norman conquest of England. The governments of commercial cities were associational governments. In general, associational governments were hospitable to economic progress, while predatory governments were not.
Associational government, however, had a problem: it did not scale up very well. As the territory and population under an associational government grew, it became increasingly difficult for the population to exercise effective control over its government. This enabled the government to engage in predation: associational government turned into predatory government. Fortunately, a new form of associational government emerged, largely by chance, that solved this problem. When the provinces of the Netherlands won their war of independence from Spain, they created a national government that was an association of associational governments — a federal government. This was the model later adopted by the United States.
What did this different understanding of government mean for my progressivism? What government does is deploy force. In the good case, it deploys force to protect its territory against predation. In the bad case, to which things naturally tend, it deploys force to engage in predation. Government has existed for millennia; only a century or so ago did intellectuals — many of them economists — come up with the idea that government was a suitable instrument for solving society’s problems. It is a bizarre idea: why should the guys with the guns run the financial system or provide us with education or health care? The second pillar of my progressivism crumbled.
So, that is how I became a libertarian. The first step was my personal experience of kibbutz, where I came to realize that socialism, even on the scale of a small community, did not further human happiness. The second step was examining the history of government regulation of the U.S. financial system. From that, I learned that contrary to the assumption of progressivism, the government does not know — and cannot know — how to make things better. Indeed, its interventions generally make things worse. The third step was my research into the origins and nature of government. Progressivism assumes that government is a suitable instrument for improving society — a kind of fairy godmother. History teaches otherwise: government evolved primarily as an instrument of predation — more like a wicked witch.
Persuaded by this evidence, I became a libertarian — a libertarian with a small “l.” That is, I believe in limited government. Government is necessary to protect us against predation by other governments. But government is not a suitable instrument for other purposes, such as regulating economic activity, funding scientific research, or engaging in social engineering."
The last time we tried this experiment in progressive soft on crime idiocy, we drove crime to stratospheric levels from the early 1960s to the mid-1990s
A New Kind Of “Mistake”
The tragedy was that it was minorities in the inner cities who paid the price for this Bobo pseudo-intellectual progressive experiment, not the pseudo-intellectual progressives. The same thing will happen once again with the poor minorities paying the progressive leftists' price to leverage power.
Letting it burn is an emotional cheat, but the reality is what will burn are the places where the people cannot recover from the burn damage. What needs to burn are the environs of Hollywood and other trendy lefty progressive communities, not the communities of people being used and discarded by the progressive leftists.
Then again, until the people being used and discarded come to their senses, realize that they are being used and discarded, it is all but impossible to help them avoid the destruction.
Burn baby burn...
The imbeciles over at the Squad routinely fail intelligence tests. They seem emboldened to find out which of them can fail the intelligence test the most spectacularly. What makes this all the more galling is that people in the real world believe this twaddle and follow these imbeciles as if they had an IQ of more than 80.
Good luck with that ...