Words of Wisdom

Just a reminder that we’ve been here before:

Ronald Reagan: “The nine most terrifying words in the English language are, ‘I’m from the government and I’m here to help.'”

Barry Goldwater:  “A government that is big enough to give you all you want is big enough to take it all away.”

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  • Zhombre

    George Santayana: “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” To which I would add those of us who remember the past are condemned to see those who don’t remember it, or choose to distort or revise it for their own purposes, inflict the past upon us again.

  • Danny Lemieux

    Re. lessons of History: the WSJ today had an interesting front-age graph comparing the “record” stock market surge on Monday to the other top-nine surges in history. Except for 1987, all the others occurred during the early years of the Great Depression. Major bummer!

  • Ozzie

    Except for 1987, all the others occurred during the early years of the Great Depression. Major bummer!- Danny

    I just saw this today.

    Derivatives the new ‘ticking bomb’
    Buffett and Gross warn: $516 trillion bubble is a disaster waiting to happen

    http://www.marketwatch.com/news/story/derivatives-new-ticking-time-bomb/story.aspx?guid=%7BB9E54A5D-4796-4D0D-AC9E-D9124B59D436%7D

  • Bloggers for John McCain

    http://bloggersforjohnmccain08.blogspot.com/2008/10/do-people-really-think-they-can-have-it.html

    “Apparently some people think that they can have it both ways: a big government that acts as the mayor player in all aspects of society: business, education, science, technology, medicine and the benefits that come from a capitalistic society where government plays a minor (supervisory) role: excellence, growth, rewards for those individuals who work hard, innovation and hope for a better future for the next generation (which is what I think is at the core of EU’s and Canada low birth rates). Unless they’ve found some kind of Philosopher’s stone, every single country that has tried some for of socialism, and the US under Jimmy Carter is no exception to the rule, has suffered from the same devastating effects. Are Americans really willing to give up their exceptionalism? “

  • rockdalian

    FDR’s policies prolonged Depression by 7 years, UCLA economists calculate
    “In an article in the August issue of the Journal of Political Economy, Ohanian and Cole blame specific anti-competition and pro-labor measures that Roosevelt promoted and signed into law June 16, 1933.”
    http://tinyurl.com/44ysum

    Tie in the Check Card issue the Libs will pass and tie in the abandonment of NAFTA Obama has promised and the groundwork will be in place for a repeat of the depression era.
    Eerie how history seems on the verge of repeating.

  • rockdalian

    And I bet y’all thought there were problems in higher education. Perish the thought. All is well.
    http://www.supportbillayers.org/

    3247 Current Endorsements

  • Mike Devx

    $516 trillion in derivates! That’s what the article does say… BrianE, help!

    I knew that the credit default swap industry was set at a worth of $52 trillion, and that part alone scared the hell out of me, because *that* form of derivates was so intimately tied to the subprime and the nasty Alt1-A mortgages (that Moodys and Finch, etc, reset to AAA loans somehow so they could qualify for MBS investment).

    I wonder what the other $450 trillion form of derivatives is related to. I don’t want to have to spend MORE hours digging into this. It already hurt my head to dig so deeply into the mortgage mess, the MBS (mortage-backed security) mess, the credit default swap mess, the Moodys and Finch rating agencies mess, the Fannie Mae and Democrat and CRA triggering mess…

  • Ozzie

    Does anyone here think, after the past 8 years, that the modern Conservative Movement = small government?

    From Christopher Buckley:

    So, I have been effectively fatwahed (is that how you spell it?) by the conservative movement, and the magazine that my father founded must now distance itself from me. But then, conservatives have always had a bit of trouble with the concept of diversity. The GOP likes to say it’s a big-tent. Looks more like a yurt to me.

    While I regret this development, I am not in mourning, for I no longer have any clear idea what, exactly, the modern conservative movement stands for. Eight years of “conservative” government has brought us a doubled national debt, ruinous expansion of entitlement programs, bridges to nowhere, poster boy Jack Abramoff and an ill-premised, ill-waged war conducted by politicians of breathtaking arrogance. As a sideshow, it brought us a truly obscene attempt at federal intervention in the Terry Schiavo case.

    So, to paraphrase a real conservative, Ronald Reagan: I haven’t left the Republican Party. It left me.

    For more:

    http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2008-10-14/sorry-dad-i-was-fired

  • BrianE

    So, I have been effectively fatwahed (is that how you spell it?) by the conservative movement, and the magazine that my father founded must now distance itself from me

    - Chris Buckley

    Actually Rich Lowry debunked Chris’s claim. He was filling in on a temporary basis while Mark Steyn was gone.
    Chris turned in his resignation, which was accepted. I suspect if he had any sense of integrity, he might have felt embarassed to continue to claim he was a conservative. Based on the title, I assume he wanted to create as much controversy as he could.
    He did change the title of the column, though.

    Intellectual snobbery crosses party lines.

  • Ozzie

    suspect if he had any sense of integrity, he might have felt embarassed to continue to claim he was a conservative- Brian

    The definition of what “Conservative” means doesn’t match the reality of the past 8 years. But it goes beyond the “small government” myth to the cost of diverting from GOP talking points.

    Both Christoper Buckley and Kathleen Parker learned some hard lessons about what is expected of today’s Conservative recently, as did David Frum.

    Them, too, Buckely made the point that at times, his father backed liberal Democrats.

    Hell, even William Buckley Jr would not be welcomes at today’s National Review.

  • BrianE

    Mike,
    A billion here, a billion there and pretty soon you’ve got $516 trillion dollars.
    A derivative is a security whose value is derived from an underlying asset.
    “Futures contracts, forward contracts, options and swaps are the most common types of derivatives. Because derivatives are just contracts, just about anything can be used as an underlying asset. There are even derivatives based on weather data, such as the amount of rain or the number of sunny days in a particular region.”
    Swaps are just a small portion of the derivatives market.
    The point here is that they are highly leveraged.
    Anyone that has traded stocks on margin knows the risk there, and it is magnified in derivatives.

    Here’s a cute article describing how derivatives are used. Basically derivatives are used to hedge risk, but with low margin requirements offer huge returns, and huge losses.

    http://www.investopedia.com/articles/basics/07/derivatives_basics.asp

  • BrianE

    “The definition of what “Conservative” means doesn’t match the reality of the past 8 years.”- Ozzie

    That’s true, Bush was not a fiscal conservative, and I think most conservatives knew that at the time. McCain is not a fiscal conservative, but most conservatives know that also. It’s the irrational nature of Buckley’s argument that deserves condemnation. ‘Because I don’t like McCain’s attitude, I’m going to vote for a socialist (praying to his navel) that he really doesn’t turn out to be a socialist.’
    He’s hoping he’ll turn out to be a pragmatist like Clinton. But the real damage of the Clinton years were not economic and that will most certainly be the case if Obama is elected.

    “Both Christoper Buckley and Kathleen Parker learned some hard lessons…”- Ozzie

    Because they were tarred and feathered? Crosses were burned on their lawns? Ozzie get real. If you trade in words and ideas, you should expect words to be used against you. Like, ouch, that word hurt.

    Buckley wasn’t fired.

  • Ozzie

    Because they were tarred and feathered? Crosses were burned on their lawns? Ozzie get real. If you trade in words and ideas, you should expect words to be used against you. Like, ouch, that word hurt.

    Buckley wasn’t fired.- Brian

    He didnt say he was fired.

    But Buckley and Parker didnt merely get letters from people who repectfully disagreed with them, they got volumes of putrid hate mail.

    From the article I posted a link to:

    “As for the mail flooding into National Review Online—that’s been running about, oh, 700-to-1 against. In fact, the only thing the Right can’t quite decide is whether I should be boiled in oil or just put up against the wall and shot. Lethal injection would be too painless.

    I had gone out of my way in my Beast endorsement to say that I was not doing it in the pages of National Review, where I write the back-page column, because of the experience of my colleague, the lovely Kathleen Parker. Kathleen had written in NRO that she felt Sarah Palin was an embarrassment. (Hardly an alarmist view.) This brought 12,000 livid emails, among them a real charmer suggesting that Kathleen’s mother ought to have aborted her and tossed the fetus into a dumpster. I didn’t want to put NR in an awkward position.

    Since my Obama endorsement, Kathleen and I have become BFFs and now trade incoming hate-mails. No one has yet suggested my dear old Mum should have aborted me, but it’s pretty darned angry out there in Right Wing Land.. . “

  • http://bookwormroom.com Bookworm

    Regarding Buckley’s resignation, when you work (even temporarily, as he did) for an avowedly conservative entity, supporting the entity’s ideology is part of the job description. Had Buckley worked on a factory line and refused to make its widgets, nobody would say anything about his leaving the job. Here, Buckley’s task was to make conservative column widgets. His refusal to get with the plan is grounds for firing — and he knew that, which is why he quit. It’s only his liberal ego that made him turn the rational inevitable into a martyrdom.

    Now, if Buckley worked for Macy’s and his job was to sell underwear, and he kept his political views off the job, it would be a scandal if he were driven out. But he doesn’t work at Macy’s. He works for the premier conservative publication in America.

    No martyrdom there. Sorry, Christopher.

  • BrianE

    “He didnt say he was fired.”- Ozzie

    Sure he did. Read the title from your link.

    http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2008-10-14/sorry-dad-i-was-fired

    Thanks Bookworm, for putting this in proper perspective.

    It’s one thing to form a contrary position based on principal. It’s another to try and maximize the damage done by taking that position- which he obviously did.

  • Mike Devx

    Oz said,
    > Does anyone here think, after the past 8 years, that the modern Conservative Movement = small government?

    The answer is yes, yes, absolutely yes. But you must also throw in individual freedom *and* responsibility, and market capitalism.

    Americans appear ready to throw all of these conservative movement principles out the window this year, despite the fact that this remains, at its core, a conservative pragmatic country. But, strange thing, they’re not… quite… sure… yet.

    Despite the best efforts of the mainstream media to present Obama as a complete safe, traditional, middle-of-the-road politician, the American people recognize the extreme risk in pulling that lever for Obama. The doubt and reluctance to head off down that unexplored road are palpable.

    Especially when the only map we have of that road is filled with question marks, blood spatters, and one hastily scrawled phrase: “Here be Dragons.”

  • Ozzie

    Sure he did. Read the title from your link- Brian

    As a journalist, Brian, you should know that columnists often dont write their own headlines.

    This is what he wrote within the body copy:

    “Within hours of my endorsement appearing in The Daily Beast it became clear that National Review had a serious problem on its hands. So the next morning, I thought the only decent thing to do would be to offer to resign my column there. . . ”

    There was a time, in America, when being an Op-Ed columinist meant you didnt have to tow the party line. Kathleen Paker is taken aback by the wrath she’s experienced merely for saying what she thinks.

    And, as I said, William Buckley voted for Democrats from time to time and was free to say why.

    Intellectual honesty is dead, I think.

    Long live hackery!

  • suek

    >>you didnt have to tow the party line>>

    Sorry…can’t help myself…

    That should be _toe_ the party line….

    Pet peeve…!

    As for the rest…that wasn’t a party response, that was an individual response, which our marvelous internet now makes possible.

    If you’re going to publish opinions, you have to expect response. If you don’t want a strong response, don’t write a strong article. ‘Course life would be less interesting, but c’est la vie…

  • rockdalian

    Ozzie,

    From the article I posted a link to:

    Here is the truth.

    A Word on Christopher Buckley [Rich Lowry]

    Just one other point: Chris says that his Obama endorsement has generated a “tsunami,” that e-mail at NRO has been running “oh, 700-to-1″ against him, and that there’s a debate about whether to boil him in oil or shoot him. Chris is either misinformed or exercising poetic license. We have gotten about 100 e-mails, if that (a tiny amount compared to our usual volume), and threats of cancellations in the single digits (we never like to lose any readers, but circulation is way up this year).

    http://tinyurl.com/4dxdda

  • Ymarsakar

    Long live hackery!

    Why is your political hackery so superior that it allows you to paint everyone else like yourself?

  • Ymarsakar

    But then, conservatives have always had a bit of trouble with the concept of diversity. The GOP likes to say it’s a big-tent. Looks more like a yurt to me.

    You people are some of the most parochial, bitter, fundamentalist preachers around, Oz. It’s amazing you still believe yourselves free of sin while casting stones from glass houses.

  • Ozzie

    He didnt say he was fired.”- Me

    Sure he did. Read the title from your link- Brian

    FYI: The Wall Street Journal addressed this today:

    “. . . the title of the column suggesting he was “sacked” is a little misleading since he did offer his resignation.”

    http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2008/10/14/buckley-is-out-at-national-review-after-obama-endorsement/

    “You people are some of the most parochial, bitter, fundamentalist preachers around, Oz. – Ymar

    First of all, you’re quoting Chris Buckely and attributing it to me. Secondly, “you people”? I’m only one person, I swear!

    “Why is your political hackery so superior that it allows you to paint everyone else like yourself?- Y-Mar

    I’d never denounce or deride anyone for saying who they are voting for, Ymar. i’d never expect anyone to think or believe as I do.

    Something has fundamentally shifted between the time William F. Buckley founded the National Review and people like Kathleen Parker were subjected to vile attacks simply for sharing her point of view.

    If columinists are expected to suppress what they actually believe in order to appease partisans, then intellectual dishonesty will be a casualty, as hackery wins out.

  • Ozzie

    It’s amazing you still believe yourselves free of sin while casting stones from glass houses.- Ymar

    Once again, I’m not sure who you mean by “yourselves.” I only have one self.

    If you resort to hackery, you only appeal to people who already share your point of view.

    Just this morning, I read an interesting assesment of what’s happening to ‘Conservative Journalism':

    “I’ve written before that the right desperately needs more people whose foremost commitment is to intellectually honest journalism, but whose political views and guiding principles happen to be right of center. Only such people can right the ideological imbalance in the press that conservatives so often complain about. Rather than cultivate these people, however, the conservative movement labels them heretics.. . . ”

    http://culture11.com/blogs/theconfabulum/2008/10/15/on-conservative-journalists/

  • Mike Devx

    Hmm. I’m not thrilled with Kathleen Parker’s disgust with Sarah Palin, cuz we disagree on Palin while I do enjoy her columns. But I’ve never considered her a member of the conservative punditry. David Brooks, George Will, Charles Krauthammer, David Gergen, Peggy Noonan… these are names I vilify because they vilify Sarah Palin with severe invective. When they attack her they attack me. They attack principles I hold dear. Kathleen Parker’s disappointment with Sarah Palin was explained in terms that didn’t smack of sneering elitism. The others… pure Elitism Disdain. I shall offer *them* the most significant finger I can. And PROUDLY do I do that! But I do not offer it to Kathleen Parker.

    Kathleen Parker has preserved her conservatism and integrity. Far more than I can say for the others, who now have a great deal to self-inflicted damage to explain.

    Others may love that sneering disdain, but these others scarcely hold conservative principles. Elitism, yes. New “Third Way” Republicanism, yes. Big Government-Business “cooperation/collaboration” with a focus on (so-called) efficiency, yes.

    But individual freedom and responsibility… no. Market capitalism… no. Conservatism… no.

  • Ozzie

    When they attack her they attack me. They attack principles I hold dear. – Mike

    I understand why they attacked her, and I think the “eltism” charge is false.

    They’re entitled to their opinion and you, yours.

    That said, I think our entire system has changed forever and that the Conservatism you wish for won’t be represented, by John McCain, Sarah Palin or anyone.

    George Bush said he was a conservative who wanted a humble foreign policy and was opposed to nation building. He shared an entirely different view with his biographer in 1999, however.

    Traditional conservatives have no voice, nor do traditional liberals. Those terms have become meaningless in today’s world.

  • BrianE

    “I’ve written before that the right desperately needs more people whose foremost commitment is to intellectually honest journalism, but whose political views and guiding principles happen to be right of center. Only such people can right the ideological imbalance in the press that conservatives so often complain about. Rather than cultivate these people, however, the conservative movement labels them heretics.. . . ”

    From Culture11.com

    I went over and read this and the comments. On a scale of irrelevance, I give it a 7 as intellectual tripe. These are people who appear to be smart, trying to outdo each other’s smartness. While entertaining, I’m not sure what relevance they bring to the issue of conservatism, other than representing the miniscule subset of people wishing conservatism was something it’s not, lamenting the influence of those ‘other’ folks.
    Their comments are intellectual incest, kind of an east coast inbreeding ground.

    It appears that intellectually honest journalism, in their opinion, consists of trashing those who operate below their MENSA line. You know, the people of action, who don’t spend time wringing their hands at every conundrum, who are able to lock and load and pull the trigger in an easy motion that leaves those of lesser abilities questioning their judgement.

    If in fact the conservatism of Palin is anti-intellectual, grounded in pragmatism, securely tethered to the real, not the imaginary constructs of the elist mind, count me as one whose sentences proudly contain one idea at a time, though sometimes in no particular order.

    Intellectual honesty only exists on the right, honesty that comes from having a standard by which positions are judged. It would be refreshing to see some of that spill over to the left– of course, that would require them to actually have standards.

  • suek

    Brian…

    Heh.

    Sometimes I think it comes down to the fact that Conservatives have respect for honest labor even if it’s physical, and Leftists pity those who work with their hands as lesser men, and respect only those who can aspire to what they consider “lofty” pursuits of the intellect.

    I wonder if Ayers – and Wright, for that matter – fix their own plumbing or mow their own yards…

  • Ymarsakar

    I wonder if Ayers – and Wright, for that matter – fix their own plumbing or mow their own yards…

    That’s what slave, serf, and the working class are for.

  • Ymarsakar

    Once again, I’m not sure who you mean by “yourselves.”

    I mean the coalition of people who call themselves Republicans but act like Democrat partisans. In your case, you don’t call yourself a Republican, not even one just registered in the party. You just call yourself able to see the “big picture” and able to surpass “partisan” blinds. You believe yourself to be one of the transcended: ascension beyond Democrat or Republican lines.

    If you resort to hackery, you only appeal to people who already share your point of view.

    You would think that after having said that you would be able to apply it to yourself and your actions here, but you don’t. Which is why your statement is false coming from you. Like Special Relativity said, things are different depending upon your frame of reference.

    They’re entitled to their opinion and you, yours.

    Why do you and Helen always use that as a justification and defense of your views? They have about as much worth in a debate as saying the ocean is wet. Just because the ocean is wet doesn’t mean somebody went for a swim in the ocean because they are now dripping water unto the carpet.

  • http://bookwormroom.com Bookworm

    Re comments 27 and 28: When I attended Cal, all of the Marxist professors had huge houses in the Oakland and Berkeley hills, well-staffed by Mexican maids and Japanese or Mexican gardeners. Socialism for thee, but not for me.

  • Ozzie

    I mean the coalition of people who call themselves Republicans but act like Democrat partisans. – Ymar

    Glenn Greenwald put it this way:

    “If those who spent the last eight years vigorously opposing the radicalism, militarism, and anti-constitutional abuses of the Bush administration fail to oppose the Democratic leadership with equal fervor when they violate the same principles — as they inevitably will — then the humiliation of the Right and its removal from power will be emotionally satisfying, perfectly just, and a very mild improvement, but will ensure the continuation rather than the termination of most of the worst abuses of this government. . ”

    I believe that this trend grew muscle under Clinton, picked up steam with Bush , and will continue under the next president, whoever he may be.

    I think it’s where America is headed, regarless which party is in charge..

  • BrianE

    “If those who spent the last eight years vigorously opposing the radicalism, militarism, and anti-constitutional abuses of the Bush administration fail to oppose the Democratic leadership with equal fervor when they violate the same principles — as they inevitably will — then the humiliation of the Right and its removal from power will be emotionally satisfying, perfectly just, and a very mild improvement, but will ensure the continuation rather than the termination of most of the worst abuses of this government. . ”- Glenn Greenwald

    This doesn’t make any sense.
    He’s saying if the left doesn’t oppose Obama’s Bosnia, whenever or wherever it occurs, and he’s confident they won’t, the humiliation of the Right will be emotionally satisfying?
    What, is he some kind of sadist? and he certainly has an unusual view of justice.

    I will say this about The Patriot Act. In a normal world where democrats and republicans viewed the surivival of America as paramount (that perfect world Helen describes), it would be appropriate for the bill to be re-authorized at regular intervals, since it would be a noble goal to reduce the threat of jihadi’s to a level where it was not needed.

  • Ymarsakar

    I believe that this trend grew muscle under Clinton, picked up steam with Bush , and will continue under the next president, whoever he may be.

    I believe that when you repeat the totally off the road remarks of Glenn on justice, you are the trend.

  • Ozzie

    He’s saying if the left doesn’t oppose Obama’s Bosnia, whenever or wherever it occurs, and he’s confident they won’t, the humiliation of the Right will be emotionally satisfying?- Brian

    I think he’s warning Democrats not to have double standards.

    I think the trend will be to towards a more authoritarian America regardless who wins.

  • Ymarsakar

    I think he’s warning Democrats not to have double standards.

    He’s fine with double standards on justice.

  • Ymarsakar

    I think the trend will be to towards a more authoritarian America regardless who wins.

    Obviously when you pick and choose depending on your preferences, Oz, it’ll look the way you want to make it look.

  • Zhombre

    Perhaps Greenwald is merely incoherent. Incoherence and irrational anger have been very trendy the last few years.

  • Ymarsakar

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ozFhWTfO8YQ

    THe video contrasts with your comments, Oz, in one fundamental respect. It’s not enough to predict gloom and hope that people will get savaged by the status quo of authoritarian factions. You need to actually contribute to a solution rather than just talking about who is to blame.

    I think the trend will be to towards a more authoritarian America regardless who wins.

    If that is the trend and it holds, it will only hold because of people who complain about problems and sabotage the efforts of people who attempt to fix the problems.

  • BrianE

    “If those who spent the last eight years vigorously opposing the radicalism, militarism, and anti-constitutional abuses of the Bush administration fail to oppose the Democratic leadership with equal fervor when they violate the same principles — as they inevitably will — then the humiliation of the Right and its removal from power will be emotionally satisfying, perfectly just, and a very mild improvement, but will ensure the continuation rather than the termination of most of the worst abuses of this government. . ”- Glenn Greenwald

    OK, let’s see if I’ve got this.

    “The left are going to be as big a hypocrite as the right, because they’re going to embrace Obama adventurism as lustily as the right embraced Bushs’, only then we will jump up and down for joy at the humiliation of the right caused by eight years of leftist lies and distortions and we can all say “well done”, and it’s all perfectly justified even though we’re only slightly better than them. And the abuses of government will continue unabated.”

    That’s the kind of hope and change we’re all looking for!

  • Ozzie

    You need to actually contribute to a solution rather than just talking about who is to blame.- zhombre

    I’m pessimistic, Zhombre. I think the system is broken, and that we’re facing economic collapse and all that goes with it.

    Right around 2001- 2002, I thought it was all George Bush’s fault.

    Then I started looking at Clinton’s record and saw a pattern.

    Then I started reading works by Kevin Phillips and Chalmers Johnson, who say that there will be more war, less liberty, and eventual bankruptcy. To tell you the truth, after seeing what David Walker has to say, they seem prescient at the moment.

    If they’re wrong and I’m wrong, no big deal. But if i’m right? There’s not much we can do about it.

    Man, I’m a downer, aren’t I?

  • suek

    >>Man, I’m a downer, aren’t I?>>

    That you are! I get the feeling that you’re expecting perfection in society…that government in toto should live up to your ideals…and that just isn’t going to happen. In Capitalism, the idea is that each entity will strive to get what is best for itself, and by placing competing entities into goverment, our Founders hoped that the self-interest of the different entities would keep the others in check. Likewise business.
    What we’ve seen is a migration toward socialism/communism where all is planned and controlled by a central government function. The result is a lack of competition between businesses and government. It’s not healthy. It may be efficient, but it works to the improvement of a few, not the most.

  • Ozzie

    get the feeling that you’re expecting perfection in society- suek

    No. I expect some things to be constant: Remember the one that says you should work hard and play by the rules and save your money, you’ll be set? We can’t even count on that..

    ” Founders hoped that the self-interest of the different entities would keep the others in check. ” — suek

    I thought they said that the three separate branches of government would keep each other in check.

    But since you mentioned the Founders:

    “I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies. If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around [the banks] will deprive the people of all property until their children wake-up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered.. . ” Thomas Jefferson, Letter to the Secretary of the Treasury Albert Gallatin (1802)

  • Zhombre

    Dear Oz: you attribute a remark to me that some one else made. Though the sentiments expressed are not alien to me. I heard it said once, you are part of the problem, or part of the solution, or part of the scenery. I share your concerns about The Coming Deterioration. Though I would not invest absolute certainty in what Chalmers or Phillips write. If things go bad, they go bad; as a conservative I take the tragic and not the utopian view of life. There is not, never was, never will be heaven on earth. That’s not the way the earth is made or the way human nature, unchanged by Marx or Jesus, unfolds. See, I’m a downer too. I subscribe to a thought David Mamet wrote after contemplating the Torah: The struggle to deal with an unjust, confusing and incomprehensible world does not impede our life; it IS our life.

  • Zhombre

    Oh, and nice quote from Jefferson, whom I regard as a genius, but I subscribe to a Hamiltonian view of a strong central government (that operates of course within severe limits). Jefferson distrusted banks but as a Virginia plantation owner dependent upon credit, was a spendthrift, and died bankrupt. His vision of agrarian democracy was a fine one, if you were a Virginia planter with vast acreage and many slaves at your command; if you were a shopkeeper or tradesman in New York or Boston, the vision was less delectable. I think Hamilton’s conception of a republic based on commerce, trade, and finance was the more practical and it has been argued by people more astute and educated than me that the Jeffersonian and democratic aversion to a central U.S. bank played economic havoc in earlier centuries in America. I think one could argue now that the Democrat use of government and GSE’s to promote home ownership, lower credit standards, and “policially correct” lending by banks, i.e., using coercive methods to enlist private banks in populist social engineering, albeit for an ostensibly laudable goal, was contributory at least to the present financial debacle.

  • Zhombre

    FOOTNOTE

    Every Treasury employee who retires is recipient of the Albert Gallatin Award for faithful service. The fact that Alexander Hamilton was the first secretary of the Treasury, and Gallatin under Jefferson was the second, seems overlooked.

  • BrianE

    Ozzie,
    Your starting to sound like the end of the world is coming.

    Of course, the end of the world IS coming. We just don’t know when.
    Plan to live forever. Be prepared to die today.

  • Ozzie

    share your concerns about The Coming Deterioration. Though I would not invest absolute certainty in what Chalmers or Phillips write. If things go bad, they go bad; as a conservative I take the tragic and not the utopian view of life. There is not, never was, never will be heaven on earth. That’s not the way the earth is made or the way human nature, unchanged by Marx or Jesus, unfolds. See, I’m a downer too. I subscribe to a thought David Mamet wrote after contemplating the Torah: The struggle to deal with an unjust, confusing and incomprehensible world does not impede our life; it IS our life.- Zhomre

    This might surprise you, but I agree with everything you’ve said here.

    And while I always try to remind myself that people like Johnson, Phillips and David Walker could be wrong, one thing stands out: One of them (though I’m exactly sure who) recently said that as things deteriorate, eveyone feels it, but tend to disagree on the cause.

    I look at the anger and nastiness on both sides of the politcal fence, and the hatred people are expressing and wonder if that’s not a symptom of this.

  • Ozzie

    Your starting to sound like the end of the world is coming- Brian

    I feel as if the end of the word as we’ve known it is coming, Brian, regardless who wins the election.

  • Ymarsakar

    If they’re wrong and I’m wrong, no big deal. But if i’m right? There’s not much we can do about it.

    That was my comment rather than Z’s to set the record straight.

    If you are wrong then it is a big deal, for you are demoralizing people that could have spent their time thinking about the solution or even accomplishing the solution.

    If you are right and there is not much we can do about it? Then why do you constantly spend your time in entertainment by bringing links and repeating claims without evidence here, oz? If it is just to make you feel better, if you recognize that you can do nothing if you are right, then it rather makes your arguments here pointless, no ?

    And certainly it bolsters my claim of you being a nihilist. For nihilists do not believe that any productive work can be done in the world.