Oct 05 2008

Capitalism tried and found guilty for the crimes of socialists

Category: economy,media,philosophy,politicsharmonicminer @ 9:05 am

I should probably stop quoting Mr. Bidinotto so much, but his analysis is simply dead on target. After reviewing the history of the current financial meltdown (that’s what happens when you play with something as radioactive as cheap financing for bad credit risks with a short half-life in the name of equality), he opines:

Now, what’s Congress’s answer to all of this?

To nationalize the bad loans — thus formalizing the taxpayers’ obligation to underwrite the rampant irresponsibility that led to this mess in the first place.

The welfare state established the basic moral principle we now see in all its ugliness: that responsible taxpayers are to be sacrificial servants of the irresponsible — that they are to buffer the irresponsible from the destructive consequences of their actions, by absorbing that damage themselves.

But now, we are adding the following amendment to this premise of moral cannibalism: that the greater and more destructive the irrationality caused by others, the more immediate and pressing is the taxpayers’ moral duty to absorb the harm onto themselves.

The basic argument used to push this bailout is that the irrational institutions that were most responsible for the credit crisis are too big, and the harm that they cause too great, to be allowed to fail — i.e., to absorb the consequences onto themselves. The logical conclusion? That gigantic destructive consequences must therefore be transferred onto the backs of those who were not responsible for them.

The fundamental “redistribution” that goes on in our welfare “entitlement” state is not a transfer of money; that’s just a manifestation of its underlying immorality. The fundamental “guarantees” are not of money, but of other people’s money — as a matter of moral entitlement.

What is being transferred in our “entitlement” state is moral responsibility. What we are witnessing is a transfer of rewards and penalties from those who caused them, to those who didn’t. In this moral inversion, it is the evil and irrational who are rewarded, while the good and rational are punished.

And it is clear that the impetus for enshrining these predatory premises comes from the American middle class — in order to “guarantee” their own middle-class “entitlements.” We are sacrificing the producer to the parasite…and to the predator.

So.  We have an enormous problem in the USA. If you add up the people who work for the government, and the people who depend on entitlement programs, the “structural bias” is overwhelming towards one party and one orientation about what government is for.

I think as a society we’re approaching a critical mass, where the real special interests, namely gov’t employees and their unions, public/private corps (like Fannie/Freddie, some “publicly owned utilities”, others) and people beholden to them, and entitlement recipients (including FUTURE entitlement recipients who want to “get theirs” in their turn), are simply going to outvote any conceivable combination of people who actually produce something, or people who actually think about the greater good of the society at large, in the longer term.

Nothing unique in the observation.  It has been stated more elegantly and pithily by Robert Heinlein, quoted here:

The America of my time line is a laboratory example of what can happen to democracies, what has eventually happened to all perfect democracies throughout all histories. A perfect democracy, a ‘warm body’ democracy in which every adult may vote and all votes count equally, has no internal feedback for self-correction. It depends solely on the wisdom and self-restraint of citizens… which is opposed by the folly and lack of self-restraint of other citizens. What is supposed to happen in a democracy is that each sovereign citizen will always vote in the public interest for the safety and welfare of all. But what does happen is that he votes his own self-interest as he sees it… which for the majority translates as ‘Bread and Circuses.’

‘Bread and Circuses’ is the cancer of democracy, the fatal disease for which there is no cure. Democracy often works beautifully at first. But once a state extends the franchise to every warm body, be he producer or parasite, that day marks the beginning of the end of the state. For when the plebs discover that they can vote themselves bread and circuses without limit and that the productive members of the body politic cannot stop them, they will do so, until the state bleeds to death, or in its weakened condition the state succumbs to an invader—the barbarians enter Rome.

By my count, there are at least four separate sets of invaders intent on destroying the America that was. Some are here, some are coming, but any of those four threats will kill us as a nation, slowly, or suddenly, if we don’t awaken soon and stop eating our seed corn.  I suppose the question is will we die of the complications of the flu, or the plague, or simple starvation, or just the merciful coup de grâce from a merciless enemy.  I’m being deliberately vague here; if you don’t know the threats our nation faces (all essentially from without, though the invasions have begun), my listing them here won’t enlighten you in your chosen blindness.  If you really don’t know who our enemies are, it’s probably because you can’t read:  here are some pictures, of some of them.  Not quite all.  But if you can figure these out, maybe you’ll guess the fourth.

We can defeat any enemy, except ourselves.

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One Response to “Capitalism tried and found guilty for the crimes of socialists”

  1. harmonicminer » The Chicago Democrats’ dirty little non-secret says:

    [...] people dependent on government for their daily bread, and silence the rest, the game is over, and the American experiment in constitutional republican democracy will be finished, even if it continues in [...]

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