Mar 20 2009

The AIG bonuses: how it really happened

Category: Uncategorizedharmonicminer @ 6:26 pm


Mar 20 2009

Yes, young adult Christians, it’s your fault

Category: McCain,Uncategorizedsardonicwhiner @ 9:41 am

Mark Steyn seems to be feeling humorously guilty and desperate that the boomers now running the world are building up a huge tab that will be paid by today’s 18-25 yr olds, and maybe younger, as they attempt to bail out everyone for everything. (At the link, lots of funny stuff, and some scary stuff, as always with Steyn.):

The Bailout and the TARP and the Stimulus and the Multi-Trillion Budget and TARP 2 and Stimulus 2 and TARP And Stimulus Meet Frankenstein and the Wolf Man are like the old Saturday-morning cliffhanger serials your grandpa used to enjoy. But now he doesn’t have to grab his walker and totter down to the Rialto, because he can just switch on the news and every week there’s his plucky little hero Big Government facing the same old crisis: Why, there’s yet another exciting spending bill with twelve zeroes on the end, but unfortunately there seems to be some question about whether they have the votes to pass it. Oh, no! And then, just as the fate of another gazillion dollars of pork and waste hangs in the balance, Arlen Specter or one of those lady-senators from Maine dashes to the cliff edge and gives a helping hand, and phew, this week’s spendapalooza sails through. But don’t worry, there’ll be another exciting episode of Trillion-Buck Rogers of the 21st Century next week!

This is the biggest generational transfer of wealth in the history of the world. If you’re an 18-year old middle-class hopeychanger, look at the way your parents and grandparents live: It’s not going to be like that for you. You’re going to have a smaller house, and a smaller car — if not a basement flat and a bus ticket. You didn’t get us into this catastrophe. But you’re going to be stuck with the tab, just like the Germans got stuck with paying reparations for the catastrophe of the First World War. True, the Germans were actually in the war, whereas in the current crisis you guys were just goofing around at school, dozing through Diversity Studies and hoping to ace Anger Management class. But tough. That’s the way it goes.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not in favor of this gigantic multi-generational wealth transfer, borrowing money as we are from people too young to enter into a legal contract, without getting their consent (which some of them aren’t old enough to give in any case).

When I point out to young people of my acquaintance how grateful I am for their volunteering to support me in style during my retirement, with benefits they won’t be able to afford for themselves, the conservatives among them are likely to say, “But I didn’t vote for Obama!”

Tough beans, kids.  The same standard that applied to us now applies to you.  It happened on your watch.  I don’t care merely whom you voted for.  I care as much whom you really, strongly advocated for.  Did you accept half-baked post-modern arguments from your friends who voted for Obama?    Did you let them get away with claiming that Obama’s policies might reduce abortion (even though he’s the most radically pro-abortion president we have had), or make the world safer for freedom loving people (how many “peace studies” students voted for Obama?), or “save the poor” in our troubled economy, or improve the environment and save us from global warming, or???

I have a simple observation:  even conservative young people seem unwilling, or unable, to strongly make the positive cases for the legal protection of life, capitalism, freedom, less intrusive government, etc.  I suppose you can blame the older folks for not teaching you how.  On the other hand, some of us blame you for being very slow learners.  You’re old enough to have chosen, and you chose to “get along” with your left-leaning Christian friends more than you chose to challenge them, in way too many cases.   Way too many Evangelical Christian young adults voted for Obama.  Way too many more who didn’t vote for him seem to have been shy about sharing their opinions.  It seems that in this post-modern age, it is somehow gauche to clearly state your opinions, along with the facts, historical context and logic that underlies them.

I know, many post-modern young adult Christians say something like, “It’s about relationship, not about being right.”  And they use this line to justify not strongly arguing their perspective when it really needs to be done.  That’s fabulous.  But what it’s going to mean is that the “relationship” you will have to my generation is that we’ll think we have a “right” to a big fat check from you, every month.  Since you’re having babies at a slower rate than we did, there are going to be a LOT less young folk for you to pass the burden on to, when you want to retire.  But that’s your problem.  Somehow, I have the feeling that in about 40-50 years, when it’s time for you to collect from the younger generation, the new version of “hope and change” will be, “Let the geezers take care of themselves.”  Which just means that they’ll be smarter than you were at the same age.  You’ll have cooperated in making sure your generation gets the shaft both from the one older than it (mine, which you will be supporting), and the one younger than it (which is likely not to want to support you).

There really aren’t “two reasonable sides” to some of these debates, despite the post-modern tendency to reject any strong claim of truth, and to find it offensive when other people claim to be “right” about something.   Do the reading.  Read the blogs and foundation/think-tanks linked at this site, regularly, for a matter of months.  Especially the Claremont Institute, the Hoover Institution, CATO, FEE (Foundation for Economic Education), Powerline, Hugh Hewitt, Townhall.com, PajamasTV, Moral Accountability, and so on.  Find out what’s really going on in the world.  There is a side based on “hope and change” and very few facts, and fewer coherent theories to connect them, and there is a side based on an understanding of the human condition, how incentives work, and the facts of natural moral law.

You can link up with fellow young conservatives and libertarians on Twitter, on Facebook, and lots of other places accessible from the blogs and thinktanks listed here.  Get on their daily email lists.  Get yourself educated.  Learn to make the case convincingly, and then have the guts to do it within your social group.  Along the way, you may make some enemies.   That may bother you.  It may feel “unChristian” or something.  But better to have a few enemies than friends who steal you blind.  Talk about “unChristian.”

Suck it up.  It’s not too late.  Start NOW educating those around you, especially the lefties and mushy middles, the ones of your cohort who, well-meaning, are simply fooled by nice sounding platitudes on the Left.  Help them to understand that if they don’t quickly help to reverse the current Democrat majority in Congress, in the upcoming 2010 elections, then they will pay, and pay, and pay, in blood and treasure.

And worse, they still won’t get what they now think they’ll be paying for, because there will still be poverty, people getting inadequate medical care, and kids getting poor educations.   And the world “out there” will be an even more dangerous place, for them and their children.

And, of course, you and your kids will also have to become awesome bicycle mechanics.  So you can come visit me at my retirement villa, I mean, since you won’t be able to afford gas.  I’ll be waiting on the golf course.  That hip replacement you will buy for me will be just perfect.  And I didn’t even have to touch my savings.  Thanks.  Really, I mean it.