Two books have been published in the last two weeks. One, the tabloid-style Fire and Fury, is a lurid revelation of Trump’s personality gathered by a Blue pass-possessing tabloid journalist, Michael Wolff, which contains interesting anti-Trump dynasty revelations by his former chief strategist, Steve Bannon. There is nothing new here for those with eyes to see and ears to hear about the Merchant of Malice and his collusive ascent to power.
The better book, which explains not only the Trump phenomenon but also the hypocrisy and sycophantism of the GOP establishment as well as the weakness of the Democratic Party, is Democracy in Chains by Nancy Maclean, a respected Professor of Public Policy at Duke University. She identifies the master plan formulated by a University of Virginia Nobel prize economist, James Buchanan, with authorization and support by Colgate Darden, who was then President of the University of Virginia.
The latter, alarmed by the Supreme Court Brown anti-segregation decision, asked that economic theorems be used to support the fact of White Supremacy.
Secrecy and stealth were essential and the subsequent support of the Kochs and others of a hereditarily monied class set into gear the assault of a powerful monied class against governmental function and definition that deemed government’s fundamental function to be support of ALL of its citizens. Thus, power and its abuse became secretly but effectively, de rigueur. This book explains why Bannon has committed political suicide by condemning (temporarily) Trump. It also indicates why Trump lied to his hoi polloi, uninformed constituency; why Obamacare is being replaced by low protection, inadequate health care plans; and why Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, and the 30-year retirement package for the military (already changed to 20-year with self-supporting health care option) are under assault as the GOP attacks the social support net begun in the 1930s.
This is the better book but will undoubtedly not be read by many.
The best hope for mankind’s future is not knowable, but the basis for making the judgment is knowable and in a democracy discussable.
Daedal2207 states: ”The best hope for mankind’s future is not knowable, but the basis for making the judgment is knowable and in a democracy discussable.”
This statement seems accurate, however it begs for some expansion:
“Hope” is a state of mind. It does not necessarily correlate with anything that is objective. Man’s objective future is what it will be regardless our beliefs (or subjective states of mind), therefore that future is an objective truth. Because man has limited knowledge, logic dictates that our BELIEFS about the future cannot be certain (clues that might reveal the exact truth of man’s future may exist within the realm of the unknown, perhaps in a form forever invisible to man). But that doesn’t mean that we are without guidance. With premises that have a high probability of being true and our ability to think rationally we can with varying degrees of reliability plan to influence a man-favoring flow of events.
Part of the problem is that we humans have great imagination. We can embrace different and often conflicting ideas as to what is believed to be “in man’s favor”. For instance, I have argued for policies that will increase the availability of resources thereby providing the richest soil, the greatest range of “nourishment” for humans with diverse needs. The leftist mindset advocates for a more equal distribution of resources (social justice) with less attention as to how such (forced) redistributions may reduce productivity and thus deplete the richness of the “soil” in which we grow.
An hour-long talk about “Democracy in Chains” by Nancy MacLean can be internet-viewed on C-Span “Books”. She is revealed to be an energetic, fast talking, “true believer”. Solid in the conviction that her political views are morally superior, she “outs” what she believes is a devious effort by some well-known libertarians to “crab-walk” their (believed to be) unacceptable policies in order to manipulate various social factions, thereby allowing their influence to gain in legal status. We should understand that such tactics for the advancement of all sorts of special interests have been dramatically on display throughout all of history, particularly the often deceptive proselytization of leftist policies during Obama’s eight years.. How was Obamacare sold to the public? Consider Saul Alinsky’s book “Rules for Radicals”. When we see that the pot is calling the kettle black there is reason for deep wonder at the irony, at the lack of self-awareness.
People love to love their causes and they love to share their causes. For mankind’s best future our primary challenge as independent thinkers is to become wise enough to acquire good judgment as to which of the myriad competing policies should prevail. Good tactics have often been used to advance poor ideas and ugly tactics have been used to advance good ideas. No matter the methods used by some, our central task is to know which ideas SHOULD prevail.
Daedal2207 claims more certitude than all the evidence would justify when he writes matter-of-factly about Donald Trump’s “collusive ascent to power”. After more than a year of intense effort conducted by sworn enemies, “collusion” has not been proven.
The idea of “white supremacy” is presented as if this tribal form of mindset is the primary (if not the only) explanation for group measured differences in performance. No matter racial or other group factors EACH OF US shares a U.S. Constitution dedicated to the right of an equal treatment under the law. The Constitution does not advocate for equalities determined by group comparisons. This idea is called “Social justice” and the effort to empower government to create laws intended to forcefully reshape all “tribes” to conform to any elite’s definition of “equal” requires a “fundamental transformation” of the original founding law. We need to understand that group-think contradicts the immense value of an equal justice for each citizen. Laws that create “Special rights” for some are in conflict with “equal rights” for all. If the former prevails some citizens must in some fashion be FORCED to be subservient to others.
Daedal2207 seems to assume that once in a specific “moneyed class” people are trapped. No matter an individual’s level of skill, discipline, and effort, one cannot move upward (or downward?). Once assumed, such a believer can demonize those “privileged” to be among “upper” classes, and righteously devote a good-feeling compassion, an empathic identification with those locked into the tragic “lower” classes – now deemed to be victims of the “greedy” rich. The government that leftists want to create could force those identified as members of privileged “tribes” to share their largesse (and possibly get their comeuppance too!). The leftist mind wants government to “support” all its citizens. “Support” consists of government’s controlling the production and distribution of a long list of “things”. When a quick focus is needed, as in a war situation, government-directed power and force is appropriate. When diversity of product, like a full supermarket, is most rewarding a competitive free market can produce a variety of goods more efficiently, with less corruption, with higher quality, and for less cost.
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