Objectifying Women was once Bad but now may be Good according to a Yale Professor

Posted by PITHOCRATES - December 8th, 2013

Week in Review

Objectifying women is bad.  For it dehumanizes a woman.  Makes her a thing.  And not a person.  Then again, some are now saying that objectifying women actually humanizes them.  For when we see women in pornography we ascribe them feelings.  Feel empathy for them as they writhe in sexual ecstasy.  And feel compassion for them as they end a sex scene in the classic porn ending.  Which is why men watch pornography, I guess.  To feel closer to these women.  And lament that they can’t ask them how they feel.  And what they’re thinking.  At least according to a Yale professor (see New York Times Op-Ed Finds the Upside to Objectifying Women. What a Relief. by Amanda Hess posted 12/3/2013 on Slate).

What do we think about when we think about naked people? In the New York Times this weekend, Yale psychology professor Paul Bloom says that it’s time to rethink the theory of objectification. The feminist argument is that when people are depicted in sexualized contexts, “the objectifier (typically a man) thinks of the target of his desire (typically a woman) as a mere thing, lacking autonomy, individuality and subjective experience.” Bloom argues that the objectification process is actually more complicated: While focusing on people’s bodies as opposed to their minds does decrease our perceptions of their ability “to act, plan and exert self-control,” he writes, it can actually increase our perceptions of their capacity to “feel pain, pleasure and emotions.” When we look at people in a sexual context (or catch a peek at them without their clothes on), we’re less likely to ascribe them agency, but we’re more likely to ascribe them feelings. That could actually inspire greater empathy toward the objectified party—a silver lining to the focus on flesh…

To Bloom, the findings are hopeful. “Part of the effect of nudity that our study found is morally positive—it’s usually a good thing to be more attuned to someone else’s ability to experience,” he writes. Bloom’s interpretation of human psychology could even make us feel less bad about ourselves for watching porn. “It’s not literally true that women in pornography are thought of as inanimate and unfeeling objects; if they were, then they would just as effectively be depicted as unconscious or unresponsive, as opposed to (as is more often the case) aroused and compliant,” he writes. Looking at naked people can “trigger disgust, fear, and hatred,” Bloom says, but it can also “elicit empathy and compassion.”

Interestingly, the same week this article appeared this article was published (see ‘She wanted to be a superstar’: Never-before-seen photographs of Linda Lovelace, aged 24, reveal her attempts at becoming ‘a legitimate actress’ by Sadie Whitelocks posted 12/4/2013 on the Daily Mail).

Despite the two movies making her a household name, Lovelace later spoke out against pornography in speeches to universities and governments.

‘When you see the movie Deep Throat, you are watching me being raped,’ she boldly stated in a 1986 official inquiry into the sex industry. ‘It is a crime that movie is still showing. There was a gun to my head the entire time.’

For her old friends in the business, though, she was labeled a traitor; they sneeringly coined the term ‘Linda Syndrome’ to describe former porn stars who later try to disown their seedy careers.

The exhibition’s photographs reveal, even before Lovelace made Deep Throat II, that she was keen to get out of the adult entertainment industry.

If you’re unfamiliar with the film Deep Throat you can look it up on IMDB or Wikipedia or some other online source.  Suffice it to say that this movie objectified Linda Susan Boreman (who was Linda Lovelace).  And then some.  Sadly she passed away in 2002 after a serious auto accident at the age of 53.

Boreman would probably not have agreed with this Yale professor.  Of course, she might have done so only because she wanted to disown her seedy career in the adult entertainment industry that objectified her.  But it does beg the question why is Yale studying naked women?  A bastion of liberalism.  And feminism.  I mean, this is the kind of thing you would expect to read in Playboy.  Not in a paper from an Ivy League university.  Then again Playboy has a special relationship with the Ivy League.  Putting out a few pictorial specials objectifying women of the Ivy League.  Maybe they’re planning a return to Yale.  And this is just to make the coeds comfortable in shedding their clothes in front of the camera.  So we can study their nude bodies.  Feel empathy for them.  And compassion.  As we study their nakedness.  For socio-scientific purposes, of course.

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FT180: “If diversity is best for our children than having a mother and a father must be best for our children.” —Old Pithy

Posted by PITHOCRATES - July 26th, 2013

Fundamental Truth

While the French embrace their Culture the Liberals in America attack their own Culture

What is multiculturalism?  It’s a philosophy of diversity.  Basically saying it’s our differences that make us great.  Something you won’t hear a whole lot of in France.  Where they have a single culture they promote.  The French culture.  And rightly so.  Because it is the French culture that makes France great.  Just as it is the British culture that makes Britain great.  As the Spanish culture makes Spain great.  As the German culture makes Germany great.  As the Japanese culture makes Japan great.  As the Mexican culture makes Mexico great.  Etc.

In the United States of America, though, it’s not American culture that makes America great.  It’s all of the other cultures in America.  Which is why they teach multiculturalism.  Where we must admire and respect every other culture.  And they don’t teach assimilation.  Where people in America assimilate into a single culture.  The American culture.  The one culture that is not worthy of admiration or veneration.  Apparently.

Where did this start?  It started with our educators at colleges and universities.  As well as at our public schools.  And the liberals controlling them.  Who decided to do something about their hatred of America.  In addition to the other things that they were already doing.  Instead of teaching about American greatness they taught about American imperialism.  They taught how the Founding Fathers stole America from the Native Americans.  They taught how the Founding Fathers were nothing more than rich white slave owners.  Who made a country to benefit rich white slave owners.  So while the French embrace their culture the liberals in America attack their own culture.  Basically saying America isn’t great.  But everyone else is.  That is multiculturalism.

Liberals are Smarter than Everyone Else and should be Running the Nation, not a Government of the People

Liberals hate America.  They hate it so much that they have worked incessantly to change it.  Like a cancer.  Working from within.  Invading our culture and institutions and slowly spreading.  Just as socialism consumed Europe.  The liberals wanted that in America, too.  But liberals were, and still are, a small minority in the nation.  Few think like they do.  So they’ve always found great resistance to their enlightened ideals.

Their Ivy League schools created and nurtured liberalism.  Rich people who inherited their money sent their kids to the Ivy League.  And when they leave these schools many go into politics.  Or policy think-tanks that influence politics.  So these few, this privileged few, can change America.  To reflect what they believe it should be.  And run by like-minded people like them.  An aristocracy.  Something America shouldn’t have.  But does because of people like them.  Who are better and smarter than everyone else.  And should be running the nation.  Not a government of the people.

Liberals hate the principles of the Founding Fathers.  They hate limited government.  Laissez-faire capitalism.  Free markets.  A business-friendly regulatory environment.  Low taxes.  And the profit incentive.  The things that made America the number one economy in the world.  And the destination of choice for immigrants looking for a better life.  One free from government oppression.  Abject poverty.  Chronic hunger.  And corruption.  People who were tired of living in a society where everyone was equal.  Where some were more equal than others.  So they came here.  To get away from people like liberals.  Who think they are more equal than everyone else.

Liberals enshrine Single Mothers and Same-Sex Couples raising Children to help destroy the Traditional Family

Because liberals are a small minority of the population they face great opposition.  Which is why they have infiltrated our educational system.  To set the educational curriculum.  So they can take our children.  And make them think differently from their parents.  Who most likely think like the majority.  And not like the liberal, privileged elite.  The aristocracy.  This is the greatest enemy of liberalism.  Parents.  And the family.

Parents have some 5 years to teach their kids to think incorrectly.  That’s a 5-year head-start these parents have.  Which the liberals have to undo.  So they can start programming them to become good liberals.  So they attack the family.  To break the bond between the parents and their children.  So they can start building a bond between these children and the liberal state.  Which is a prime motivation behind global warming.  For it was these children’s greedy, thoughtless parents that caused global warming.  Because they were so greedy and thoughtless—or just too stupid—to care about the planet.

So liberals enshrine single mothers.  And same-sex couples raising children.  To help destroy the traditional family.  And build a loyalty of single mothers and same-sex couples to the state.  By providing financial assistance.  Or new legislation to protect and help them.  Ensuring that these people will make these children think correctly from the get-go.  Which is why multiculturalism and diversity go out the window in the family.  A mother and a father are different.  They are a woman and a man.  Who can provide a much broader cultural education than a single mother.  Or a same-sex couple.  Who can only provide half of the cultural experience that a woman AND a man can provide.  So parenting is the one place in America that we don’t make better with diversity.  For when it comes to children in the household there is nothing wrong with having a single cultural experience.  No.  Multiculturalism only applies after these kids leave the household.  When they may start thinking incorrectly.

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A Princeton Woman should Marry Young before the Best Guys find Someone Else

Posted by PITHOCRATES - April 6th, 2013

Week in Review

Princeton is a very liberal school.  An esteemed member of the Ivy League.  Those graduating are going to have very liberal political views.  They will join approximately 20% of the population that thinks like them.  For this liberal view is a minority view.  As well as a superior view.  At least so think the people who belong to this American aristocracy.  Where privilege and power go hand in hand.  As many Princeton graduates enter the halls of power in Washington.  Just like a nobility should.  And as is common in most nobilities this power elite tends to be male.  So a young woman at Princeton should try to marry one of her fellow classmates.  Before he becomes too rich and powerful and acquires a taste for younger women who are not their intellectual equals (see Princeton Alumna Susan Patton Urges Women to Snag Husband on Campus Before Graduating by ABC News Blogs posted 4/1/2013 on ABC News).

Princeton University alumna Susan Patton, who is a member of the class of 1977, is sharing some wisdom with female students, but not everyone is taking kindly to it…

“It was just intended to suggest to these women who are on campus today, again, keep an open mind. Look around you. These are the best guys,” Patton said…

In the letter, Patton also says although “men regularly marry women who are younger and less intelligent…ultimately it will frustrate you to be with a man who just isn’t as smart as you.”

These guys believe they are the best guys.  And they live life as if they are.  And enjoy the privilege of being in America’s aristocracy.  And most of those in an aristocracy don’t marry for love.  They marry to improve their social and power positions.  The old fashioned way.  And the Princeton girl that snags one of these guys will be lucky.  For if she waits another ten years or so to marry these same guys who are their intellectual equals will probably be looking at younger women.  Because that’s what rich and powerful men do.  Even when they are married.  As even JFK cheated on Jackie.

The liberal elite is a small sector of the population.  Which narrows down the field for a possible husband.  Especially if you’re a smart woman in a man’s aristocracy.  So it’s not bad advice.  Marrying young.  For they are already excluding all the men in that 80% of the population that doesn’t think like them.  Which doesn’t leave many men left for smart, liberal women in their thirties and forties to find someone to marry and raise a family with.  Which is apparently something women still want.  Even if they go to one of the most esteemed and liberal schools in the Ivy League.

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FT145: “Ivy League liberals often argue contradictory positions on the same issue.” —Old Pithy

Posted by PITHOCRATES - November 23rd, 2012

Fundamental Truth

Liberals help Women satisfy the Filthy Sexual Desires of Men by giving them Birth Control and Access to Abortion

Liberals may confuse some people.  As they often seem to argue both sides of an issue.  Those they champion.  As well as those they condemn.  It can leave one scratching one’s head.  For the liberals are the pure breeds of the political world.  They come from the most exclusive and the most expensive halls of higher education.  The Ivy League.  So they’re supposed to be really smart.  But do smart people consistently contradict themselves?  No, they don’t.  So either the Ivy League doesn’t graduate smart people.  Or they graduate intellectually dishonest people.  Take the issue of marriage, for example.

The Left empowered women in the Sixties.  By giving them the birth control pill.  So they didn’t have to get married and give up on life.  No.  Thanks to the birth control pill (and abortion) women could have careers.  They could enjoy life.  Just like a man.  And didn’t have to live under the heel of a jackbooted thug.  Or otherwise known by those on the left, a husband.  No longer must they stay barefoot and pregnant.  Living life as a cook, maid and whore.  Thanks to the pill she didn’t have to succumb to the hell of wedded bliss.  For marriage sentenced a woman to hell.  There was nothing redeeming about it.  Yet they argue marriage is a beautiful thing for gay people.  And that we should rewrite law to grant this expression of love between two people to everyone.  Including lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgendered (LGBT) people.  Even though it’s the worst thing that can happen to a heterosexual woman.

Being cook and maid is bad enough but being a whore in the bedroom is the worst part of being married for a woman.  For it is the most demeaning thing.  To satisfy the filthy sexual desires of a man.  Making a woman little more than her sexual parts.  Some on the left even go so far as to call all sex within marriage rape.  (Unless it’s gay marriage, of course.)  For women are more than their sexual parts.  They are not here only to satisfy the filthy sexual desires of men.  Yet liberals want to provide free birth control and abortion services to all women.  So they can satisfy the filthy sexual desires of even more men.  For it’s only when men satisfy their sexual desires that there is a need for birth control or abortion.

Despite the Republican’s ‘War on Women’ it often Appears that it is the Liberals who don’t like the Female Condition

Birth control and abortion are important issues for women.  It’s what made women vote for President Obama according to the exit polls.  To keep their birth control and access to abortion.  Even though no one was campaigning to take these away.  They call birth control and abortion women’s health issues.  Equating pregnancy with a disease.  Something that’s imperative for government to help women avoid.  And they make other altruistic arguments.  That abortion is better than having another unwanted child born to become a costly ward of the state.  And that abortion is better than bringing another baby into an already overcrowded and polluted world.  Yet they champion the cause of gay adoption.  Even though there would be no babies available to adopt in their perfect world where no unwanted child is born into an overcrowded and polluted world.  As they would prefer to abort the babies gay couples want to adopt.

Even though liberals say that only they can protect women from the Republican’s ‘war on women’ it often appears that it is the liberals who don’t like the female condition.  As many of their actions help women to be more like men.  For examples, liberals would like to put the NFL out of business.  For football is a brutal and barbaric sport in their eyes.  As evidenced by the rise in concussions and other serious injuries.  And it doesn’t stop at the NFL.  They would like to ban it from colleges, high schools and even at the pee wee level.  Yet they will fight for the right to allow girls to play this barbaric sport with the boys.  And even applaud when a girl plays this barbaric sport as good if not better than the boys.  Despite the concussion or other serious injury that may befall her.  Ditto for boxing.

Liberals have never liked the military.  For a couple of reasons.  They don’t like defense spending.  As they’d rather spend that money on social programs.  And they really don’t like using violence.  They abhor going to war.  And once called returning Vietnam soldiers some unkind names.  They often see soldiers as those bullies who picked on them in school.  Extreme alpha males who love violence.  They’ll support the civilians who volunteer to serve.  But they really don’t like the lifers.  The career people.  Who they look at as if there is something wrong with them.  A bunch of gun-crazy nuts.  Warmongers.  Secretive people we should be very weary of.  And their military industrial complex.  Yet they fight for the advancement of women up the chain of command.  For there is nothing better than women becoming lifers and career people.  Just like those extreme alpha males.  Those warmongers.  For it’s apparently okay to be a warmonger as long as you are a woman.

Ivy League Alumni are either not Very Smart or they’re Intellectually Dishonest People

Another group of people liberals hate is corporate CEOs.  A bunch of old rich white guys that sold their souls to make a buck.  Just look at Occupy Wall Street.  The attacks on Mitt Romney.  On bank executives.  As far as the Left is concerned these people are the scum of the earth.  With these contemptible CEOs sitting on the right-hand side of Satan.  Who care only about profits.  Not people.  The evil, heartless bastards they are.  In a side by side comparison the Left would be hard pressed to say who was worse.  Corporate CEOs.  Or Nazis.  Yet they rejoice whenever a woman shatters the glass ceiling to become one of these evil, heartless, contemptible, neo-Nazis that sit on the right-hand side of Satan.  Because evil is apparently okay as long as there is a woman in charge.

And speaking of evil that’s another thing liberals don’t much care for.  Religion.  Christianity.  For they see it as nothing but thousands of years of institutional oppression of women.  And a bunch of hypocritical moralizing.  Opposing abortion.  Even birth control.  As they frown on premarital sex.  Something that just didn’t jive with the free love of the Sixties.  Or the swinging Seventies.  No.  Liberals see Christianity as a persistent effort to turn the hands of time back.  Back to a time when women were kept barefoot and pregnant.  Living life as a cook, maid and whore.  That living hell of wedded bliss.  So liberals have no love for Christianity.  Even forcing Catholics to provide birth control and the abortion pill to any women on their health insurance plans.  Even though it’s against their conscience.  Yes, they’re bullying Catholics.  Rather ironic, really.  Considering how liberals hate bullies.  But they’re willing to embrace their bullying inner selves when it comes to Christianity.  As they have nothing but contempt for the Church.  Yet they’re all for the advancement of women in the Church hierarchy.  From pastors.  To bishops.  For Christianity is everything horrible they say it is.  Especially to women.  While at the same time it’s a swell career for women.  Apparently.

So we often see liberals arguing contradictory positions on the same issue.  Which is pretty odd as many of them are brilliant Ivy League alumni.  But normal for them.  Based on their history.  So Ivy League alumni are either not very smart.  Or they’re intellectually dishonest people.  Arguing not what’s right or wrong.  But what is most politically expedient for them.  Attacking traditions and institutions they don’t like from without.  And from within.  With but one goal.  To destroy what they don’t like.  So they can build something they do like.  A new world according to them.  Whether we like it or not.

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An Ivy League Professor says their Ivy League Government Policies have killed the American Dream

Posted by PITHOCRATES - June 10th, 2012

Week in Review

The Ivy League has long had an influence over government policy.  Administrations have been filled with Ivy League graduates.  Where they have been advising lawmakers and writing policy.  Much of the economic mess we suffer from these days goes back to the progressive views of the Ivy League.  Where they think the private economy will work better when smart and enlightened thinkers like themselves tweak it. 

And over the years our capitalist free market has been slowly morphing into crony capitalism.  Where those businesses with like minded ideas as those in government (as advised by their Ivy League intelligentsia) get preferential treatment by the government.  And those who don’t think right are hit with excessive regulations and taxes.  Or as they would say in Columbia, being fair.  Because fair is whatever they say is fair (see The ‘American Dream’ Is a Myth: Joseph Stiglitz on ‘The Price of Inequality’ by Aaron Task, Daily Ticker, posted 6/8/2012 on Yahoo! Finance).

In his latest book, The Price of Inequality, Columbia Professor and Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz examines the causes of income inequality and offers some remedies. In between, he reaches some startling conclusions, including that America is “no longer the land of opportunity” and “the ‘American dream’ is a myth…”

For example, just 8% of students at America’s elite universities come from households in the bottom 50% of income, Stiglitz says, even as those universities are “needs blind” — meaning admission isn’t predicated on your ability to pay…

“What I want is a more dynamic economy and a fairer society,” he says, suggesting income inequality is ultimately detrimental to those at the top, too. “My point is we’ve created an economy that is not in accord with the principles of the free market.”

The only thing preventing the American Dream today is progressive government policies.  Immigrants used to come to this country with nothing but loose change in their pockets and went on to start a business.  Today there are so many taxes and fees and regulations that require a lawyer to understand.  This is what’s killing the American Dream.  Government.

More millionaires are self-made middle class people with a good idea.  They became entrepreneurs.  And succeeded despite the obstacles government put in place.  For no one ever heard an entrepreneur say he or she wished there was more government involvement in their industry.

The only people stuck in their class are the elite rich who own the Ivy League institutions and restrict admissions to their friends and family.  And the poor who are the victims of government programs that are supposed to help them.  Implemented by government on the advice of those Ivy League graduates who fill the ranks of policy makers in Washington.  Which perpetuates a permanent underclass for government to take care of with ever expanding government programs.

He is right, though, about the economy not in accord with free market principles.  President Obama hates capitalism and has taken active measures to oppose it.  Shut down oil exploration on federal lands and in international waters within our exclusive economic zone.  Not approving the Keystone XL pipeline.  Strong-arming Obamacare through Congress with backroom deals to pass a bill the American people didn’t want.  Subsidizing green energy companies like Solyndra that fail.  Attacking private equity.  And so on.  Helping like-minded people.  And hurting those who think differently.  This administration has become the model of crony capitalism. 

The land of opportunity and the American Dream will return this November.  It will take a while to undo some of the damage done these past 3 years or so.  But opportunity is still there.  If government would only get out of the way.

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FUNDAMENTAL TRUTH #86: “Smug, all-knowing condescension camouflages a vacuous philosophical basis.” –Old Pithy

Posted by PITHOCRATES - October 4th, 2011

Did the Ivy League make George W. Bush an Idiot?  And, if so, is Barack Obama also an Idiot?

Have you ever been belittled by a liberal?  After getting pulled into a conversation, say, about George W. Bush?  Or Ronald Reagan?  I have.  And often.  So often that I avoid these debates with liberals anymore.  Because you can’t debate with liberals.

I remember after George W. Bush won reelection.  Two liberals were having a discussion near me at work.  They just couldn’t believe how stupid the American people were.  One was a fifty year old hippy who still dressed like she was 20.  The other had a love affair with France.  Even loved Napoleon.  Funny.  As she hated George W. Bush for waging war.  And he didn’t wage half the war Napoleon did.

Anyway, I piped up.  I said why are Americans so stupid?  For reelecting George W. Bush?  They said because George W. Bush was an idiot.  I asked them to elaborate.  They did not.  Apparently, there was nothing more to say.  No specific examples.  No discussion of underlying philosophies.  Just that George W. Bush was an idiot.  Case closed.  An idiot, I might add, that was educated in their beloved liberal Ivy League.  The same Ivy League that educated Barack Obama.  And the majority of the power players in Washington.

Liberals know Everything and can Say Anything no matter how Silly and Asinine it Is

Of course, it didn’t end there.  Because I didn’t accept ‘he’s an idiot’ as an intelligible response to my question why were Americans so stupid, guess what?  I was stupid.  I was one of the great uneducated masses who should not be allowed to vote in their preferred world.  Then the ridicule came.

Their only response to my question was name calling.  Of the president.  And the American people.  No ideological discussion whatsoever.  And they laughed at me with that all knowing condescension.  They were liberals.  They knew everything.  And could say anything.  No matter how silly and asinine it was.  And because I question them I hated the poor.  I was a warmonger.  And a fascist.

The last was rather amusing.  Because I was a conservative.  Still am.  And conservatives hate fascism.  Or corporatism.  Big time government involvement in the private sector economy.  Like they want.  Making them the fascists.  Not me.  From what I could glean they were in favor of the state redistributing wealth.  Taking from the rich to give to the poor.  Like the hippy protestors of the Sixties.  They just wanted to stick it to the man.  Have sex (the old hippy had a bumper sticker saying something about being proud to be an ex-porn star.  I don’t think she was.  She just liked being provocative.  And having lots of sex.  Based on the conversations she had within earshot).  And, of course, decriminalize pot.

Liberals hate Corporations, Bankers and Republicans

They were your quintessential liberals.  Ignorant.  They hated Republicans because they want to take their freedoms away.  Because it’s Republicans that keep drugs illegal.  It’s Republicans that want to criminalize abortion.  Take away your welfare.  Who refuse to raise the minimum wage to a living wage.  Who let people get rich.  And refused to confiscate rich people’s wealth when they get rich.

They hate Republicans because they are too friendly to corporate America.  Who think more of their shareholders (the corporation owners who hire people for the express purpose of making a profit for them).  Than the American people.  And enslave the American people to maximize profits.  By charging high prices for expensive goods.  Charging interest on loaned money.  And tricking American people into living beyond their means and accumulating debt.  That they charge interest on.

Liberals hate corporations.  And Republicans.  They would like to abolish interest.  And all debt.  From sovereign debt.  To credit card debt.  Just make it go away.  And let the evil bankers just write it off.  They would like to have free health care for everyone.  And a minimum living wage for everyone.  Whether they work or not.  That’s their kind of freedom.  Of course, to have it they’ll have to bring back the institution of slavery.

Liberals Created an Aristocracy for themselves by Taxing the Productive People to Excess

Yes, you heard right.  Their freedom is another’s slavery.  For they want a welfare state.  Where the poor get everything they could ever want from cradle to grave.  And how do you pay for all of this free stuff?  By taxation, of course.  Before the government redistributes any wealth someone has to create it first.  People with jobs.  Or who own businesses.  People that have value that trade with others who have value in the free market economy.  We are traders.  And you can’t trade with someone who doesn’t produce anything of value.

Money came into being as a way to make this trading things of value easier.  People traded their things of value (goods and/or services) for money.  Then traded that money for other things of value they wanted.  It made going to the market a whole lot easier.  You didn’t have to find people to trade with who had what you wanted while having what they wanted.  You simply found what you wanted.  And paid for it.  With the money you had from selling your things of value.

Government grew from taxing these productive people.  At first just enough to provide the public goods of society.  Then liberals created an aristocracy for themselves by taxing the productive people to excess.  For liberals don’t create anything of value.  They get worthless college degrees and get worthless jobs.  In the public sector.  Or in the private sector that survives on public sector funding, i.e., crony capitalism.  They are parasites.  Living off of the productive people.  Who pay for the welfare state.

Houses are Built when Productive People Trade different Sets of Skill for Money

So let’s play make believe.  Let’s say the liberals get their way.  Like the old hippy and France lover.  Let’s say they take all the wealth from the rich.  They abolish all debt.  Make it a crime to loan money.  What will that do?  Make home owning a thing of the past for one.  Because most Americans could never buy a house without a mortgage.

Wait a minute, the liberals will scream.  That won’t happen.  Because government will just give houses to the people.  Really?  But who will build them?  If people can’t get a mortgage to pay a builder, how will the builder pay the carpenters, electricians, plumbers, roofers, etc., who build these houses?  People don’t work for free.  You see, these skilled trades trade their skills (carpentry, electrical, plumbing, etc.) with builders.  Builders trade their skill (financing and construction management) with skilled trades.  Banks trade their skills (mortgage banking) with builders.  This is how people build houses.  Productive people trade different sets of skill for money.  The end result is that people can get a mortgage and buy a house.  With the money they earn from trading their skills.

So if the liberals get their way and get rid of the things they hate then there is only one way to build houses.  Slavery.  Forcing carpenters, electricians, plumbers, etc, to work for the state.  For free.  Like a slave.  So the state can redistribute their wealth (i.e., their skill) to others.  Because people won’t willingly give their skills away for free.  That’s why they join unions.  To get the best deal they can get for their skills.  Which is another thing liberals will have to get rid of to live in their utopia.  Unions.

Liberals are about as Ignorant as they Come and have no Understanding of Basic Economics

Liberals have a smug, all-knowing condescension for people who don’t share their views.  In their minds they are brilliant people.  Because they parrot what other liberals say.  Because in their minds they think that makes them sound brilliant.  But they’re not.  They are about as ignorant as they come.  They have no understanding of basic economics.  And their pretentious airs only camouflage a vacuous philosophical basis.

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LESSONS LEARNED #77: “Liberals only call for bipartisan compromise when they’ve lost majority power and can no longer dictate policy.” -Old Pithy

Posted by PITHOCRATES - August 4th, 2011

The Liberal Ruling Class hails from the Ivy League

Liberals hail from the Ivy League.  Where they’re taught important life skills.  Arrogance.  Conceit.  And condescension.  It is here at these universities that they learn to hold everyone in contempt.  Yes, there are some out there with true liberal bona fides that didn’t go to the Ivy League, but they are the exception.  Not the rule.  These people may bleat the liberal line as well as the Ivy Leaguer, but they are not going to ascend to the Ruling Class.  And though they won’t admit it, the Ruling Class holds most of these liberals in contempt, too.

Amassing wealth and power in a few, elite hands is nothing new.  Even in early America.  The Planter Elite of the Deep South were a small minority of the population.  But they held the wealth and power in the Deep South.  And they wielded it during the Philadelphia Convention.  They held the founding of the new nation hostage.  Unless the land where all men were created equal had slavery there would be no new nation.  So there was slavery.  And the Ruling Class of the Deep South gave themselves extra political clout in the new federal government.  Thanks to the Three-Fifths Compromise.  The minority planter elite were able to inflate their numbers by counting 3/5 of each slave.  Thus inflating their numbers in the House of Representatives.

So for the first 50 years or so of the new nation the new federal government spoke with a decidedly southern accent.  And often dictated policy in the new nation.  And for those 50 or so years the Deep South was happy to be part of the union.  Because they sort of ran the show.  Then all that immigration into the north started to change the balance of power in the House of Representatives.  Which left the presidency (where they did whatever they could to make sure the president would be sympathetic to southern views and willing to compromise to save the union).  And the Senate.  And to maintain power in the Senate they had to hold on to slavery. 

The Planter Elite used Slavery to Concentrate Wealth and Power in their Hands

The Ruling Class, the Planter Elite (approximately 5% of the Southern population), used slavery to concentrate wealth and power in their hands.  It was truly an old-school aristocracy in the Deep South.  The ‘landed aristocracy’ in these states owned these states.  And up to the mid 19th century they took this disproportionate power to Congress.  They advanced and blocked legislation to protect their slaveholding interests.  To maintain their minority rule.  Their power.  And their wealth.

As immigration began to tip the balance of power away from them they turned their focus to the Senate.  Each state got two senators.  Population numbers didn’t matter.  What mattered was that there wasn’t more ‘free’ states than ‘slave’ states.  And that there was no prevailing antislavery sentiment.  As there was throughout the northern states at the time.  Not only did they eschew slavery, they weren’t even returning runaway slaves to their rightful owners.  So while they could the Planter Elite would use the power of the federal government to override any state law they felt counterproductive to their interests.  And dictate policy to these recalcitrant northern states.

For you see, slavery is a lot like socialism.  It doesn’t work well when those trapped in it can escape it.  And that was a problem for the Deep South.  Their slaves were escaping to these northern states.  And these uppity northern state governments refused to return this southern ‘property’.  Not only were they taking a financial loss on these runaway slaves, but this northern sanctuary was encouraging more slaves to run away.  This would not do.  So they passed the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 compelling them to return these slaves to bondage.  Or be fined and/or jailed.  This did not go over well in the North.  And it placed the country on the road to civil war.

The Civil War was a Battle between Privileged Aristocracy and the Equality of Self-Government

All during the run up to the Civil War, the Ruling Class, the planter elite of the Deep South, participated in the democratic process.  Because for a long time they were free to dictate a lot of U.S. policy.  From a stacked deck (thanks to the Three-Fifths Compromise).  And repeated threats of secession if they didn’t get their way.  Politicians on both sides of the slavery issue made compromise after compromise to keep the union together.  But that all changed with the election of Abraham Lincoln.  A Republican.   Which was the party taking a moral stance on the issue of slavery.  This did not bode well for the Ruling Class. 

South Carolina seceded first.  Then the rest followed.  The planter elite in these states led their states out of the union.  And into civil war.  Arguing that Lincoln’s federal government was going to infringe on their states’ rights (in particular their right to continue the institution of slavery).  They called it the War of Northern Aggression even though they fired the first shot at Fort Sumter in Charleston Harbor.  And they told their brave soldiers to fight these Yankee invaders to protect their country (i.e., state), their families and their way of life.  And they did.  Some 300,000 dying in the process.  But not to maintain the institution of slavery.  For 95% of all Southerners didn’t own any slaves.  They fought to protect their country, their families and their way of life.  Most of which was a life of backbreaking labor on a small patch of land they called the family farm.  That was in no way threatened by the North.  But the Ruling Class lied.  To protect their interests.  Their wealth.  And sacrificed a generation of their own people.  Because to them, they were as expendable as the slaves on their plantations.  Actually, they were more expendable.  For Confederate soldiers didn’t show up on their balance sheets.  But slaves did.

The Confederate soldier fought valiantly.  But lost.  In what was a battle between the Old World.  And the New World.  Between the privilege of aristocracy.  And the equality of self-government.  Between the Ruling Class.  And ordinary Americans.  The balance of power shifted.  Away from the Deep South.  But, alas, not to the people.  Instead, to the North East.  To the Ivy League.  Where another Ruling Class would rise.  And take over the reins of government.  Keeping class warfare alive and well in the United States.

Tea Party Republicans are Decidedly Anti-Ruling Class

The players may change but the Ruling Class lives on.  Those who feel entitled to an elevated position because of their birthright.  Or wealth.  Most often both.  Which is what you need to get into the Ivy League.  And you have to think correctly.  Which isn’t too much of a problem for they make sure you do so in their curriculum.  Which is heavy on liberal progressivism.  And light on staying out of other people’s business.

Case in point, Obamacare.  Universal health care.  The holy grail of liberalism.  The people didn’t want it.  Based on the polling.  And the town hall meetings.  They didn’t want the government intruding into their health care.  But they had both houses of Congress.  So they could do just about anything they wanted.  Dictate policy.  And sneak things through in the dead of night.  Which they did to make Obamacare law.  Strictly along pure partisan party lines.  Some of their members paid the ultimate price and lost in the following election.  But they take care of their own.  The Ruling Class.  Though out of office, they’re never out of power.

That is until a bunch of uppity freshmen Republicans descended on Congress.  Tea Party Republicans we call them.  And decidedly anti-Ruling Class.  And they’ve become a problem.  For they won’t accept the established order.  They can’t be bought.  And they don’t care if they get reelected.  The boobs.  All they care about is keeping their campaign promises.  Which is anathema to the Ruling Class.

And soon the shoe was on the other foot.  The Ruling Class lost the House in the 2010 midterm election.  And had to deal with obstructionism.  And by obstructionism I mean responsible governing.  Per the will of the people.  From that contemptible Tea Party.  For they are interfering with the natural order of things.  That is, letting liberals do whatever they want.  So now the liberals cry foul.  And demand bipartisan compromise.  Until they can dictate policy again.  They way it should be.  According to the Ruling Class.

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From the Democrat Playbook: When your Economic Policies Fail, commence Class Warfare

Posted by PITHOCRATES - July 9th, 2011

A Look at Future Obama in 2012

Michael Medved looks into the future.  To what a future State of the Union Address may be like.  For a president suffering low approval ratings.  And an insufferable economy (see My 2012 Obama Nightmare by Michael Medved posted 7/8/2011 on The Daily Beast).

“It’s a national tragedy when 14 million people want to work, and the rest of us see important work that needs to be done, but the big corporations that run our economy won’t match the willing people to the necessary tasks. Big companies have benefited greatly from our economic recovery, and they’re right now sitting on mountains of cash. But they apparently prefer to hoard these resources or, even worse, to use them to build new plants in Asia or Latin America, taking millions of American jobs even further away from the people who need them.

“We’ve waited three long years for bankers and CEOs to step up and do their part but when it comes to offering new jobs to their fellow Americans, these pampered plutocrats  say ‘we can’t’ or ‘we won’t.’ America deserves a better answer than this smug selfishness. The long wait for a corporate turnaround is now officially over. On the crucial challenge of providing a meaningful job to every single American who wants one, we say tonight, ‘we can’ and ‘we will.’”

At this declaration, the Democrats in the House chamber erupted in boisterous cheers, providing further sustained ovations as the president explained his bold plan. He promised to hire 10 million unemployed Americans—a full 10 million!—in federally funded jobs by the end of the year. He proposed to put them to work repairing highways and building high-speed rail, constructing and repairing schools, restoring and expanding parks and recreation facilities, planting trees, tutoring kids, providing day care, caring for the sick and elderly, policing our streets and neighborhoods, putting up new, environmentally responsible power plants, cleaning up pollution, building homes for the homeless, helping update and replace the equipment for our military.

You can actually hear the words from Obama.  Attacking big banks and corporations.  Because he has already attacked them.  And offering a huge job bill to put millions to work.  Because he already has done that, too.  The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.  Which promised to do what future Obama is promising.  But didn’t.  So although this is a work of fiction, we have no problem in believing it.  Because we have already lived it.  And could very well live it again.

The president’s plan would tap those concentrations of wealth to fund his vast jobs program with an emergency tax increase on the wealthiest Americans—restoring the 50 percent top marginal rate that Ronald Reagan championed in his initial tax reform of 1981. “My Republican friends love to cite President Reagan’s administration as the golden age of American conservatism. And I propose to follow his great example as a tax reformer. No, I won’t raise taxes on ordinary Americans—and 98 percent of you will pay nothing more. Even the wealthiest Americans won’t see a difference in what they pay on the first $250,000 they earn each year.

“But in tough times, every family needs to reassess its economic priorities. And right now the American family needs to ask, what’s more important—new yachts and island vacations for billionaires, or providing jobs for decent people who need to work?” To underline his point, Obama cited 10 wealthy Americans, seated in the gallery, who came to Washington to express their own eagerness to pay taxes at the higher rate.

Of course, Reagan dropped the top marginal rate from 70% to 50% which was a substantial cut.  In this narrative, which may very well play out in real life, Obama would be raising the rate to 50% from 35%.

In case you’re not sure what this means, let’s look at someone who earns a million dollars a year.  Say a baseball player.  Different ranges of that million are taxed at different rates.  Everything over $372,951 is taxed at the top marginal rate.  That’s $627,049.  At the 35% rate, the player owes $219,467.15 in taxes on that amount.  At the 50% rate, the player owes $313,524.50 in taxes.  Or about $94, 057.35 more.  For a total tax due of $327,888.40.  Which is 32.8% of that million dollars.

Now, if you earn a lot less than a million dollars you, no doubt, don’t care.  You’re not particularly fond of rich people.  Until you become one, that is.  Suppose you win a mega lottery and they pay you one million a year.  How would you feel then?  Being paid one million dollars but only being able to keep $672,111?  Before you start paying your state and local taxes.  Which will probably take another $100,000 or so.  Sure, it’s okay when it’s the rich ballplayer.  But I’m guessing it’ll be different when they’re taking $327,888.40 from you.  To have a federal tax bill every year equaling the cost of a real nice house.  That’s why a lot of people that come into big money have tax problems.  They’re buying those houses.  Instead of giving that money to the IRS.

The above was only a work of fiction.  But should we worry?  Perhaps.

The political fiction offered above should sound alarms for conservatives who seek to extend their progress in 2012. With Obama’s campaign already on a path to raise $1 billion through donations from his diehard loyalists, he isn’t worried about losing Wall Street support. Some of his closest advisers, as well as progressive pundits like former Labor Secretary Robert Reich, have already begun pushing for a radical, vastly ambitious new job program like the one described here.

No, the Democrats will never let the failure of their policies stop them from implementing their policies.  For they are economic deniers.  They know how things should be.  And they learned how in those Ivy League universities.  Some even go on to teach those same failed economic policies in those Ivy League universities .  And sound so smart and erudite when they champion the same failing policies over and over again that people believe that they know best.  When, obviously, they don’t.

Ivy League Economic Deniers

Those on the left use class warfare because their policies typically fail.  And no one really wants what they’re selling.  They want to tax and spend.  And boy do they.  Ronald Reagan had $200 billion deficits.  Obama has $1.5 trillion dollar deficits.  So you can’t deny that they like to spend the money.  And to spend the money you have to have it.  Which means they’re constantly trying to raise taxes.  But that has never proven to be a good campaign message.  “Vote for me so I can raise your taxes.”  Hence the class warfare.  Because once they raise rich people’s taxes, it’s much easier to raise your taxes.  Which they have to.  Because there aren’t enough rich people to tax to pay for their spending.

We need to remember this when future Obama says this when he is present Obama.  Which you know is coming.  Because Democrats are economic deniers.  They look at the worst economy since the Great Depression caused by their policies and say what we need is more of the same.  A lot more.  Not because it has worked before.  But because they learned this in some Ivy League classroom.

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FUNDAMENTAL TRUTH #58: “Presidents with aggressive domestic agendas tend to have inept and naïve foreign policy.” -Old Pithy

Posted by PITHOCRATES - March 22nd, 2011

Feeding their Egos with Illusions of their own Grandeur

First there were progressives.  Then there were liberals.  Self-proclaimed super geniuses.  Regular Wile E. Coyotes.  Smarty-pants know-it-alls.  You can’t tell them anything.  Because they know everything.  While you aren’t even smart enough to know what’s good for you.  But that’s okay.  Because they have taken it as their personal mission in life to run our lives.  To protect us from ourselves.  To tell us what to eat.  What to drink.  How to raise our kids.  How to educate them about the important things in life.  Fairness and multiculturalism.  Not math and science.  They teach us about the evils of greed.  Our greed.  Not theirs.  They can keep raising taxes to take our money so they can play with it.  But if we complain they say we hate teachers.  And children, of course.

These people start their government careers in the Ivy League.  Where they don’t learn anything useful.  They get law degrees.  Or some degree in the social sciences.  Public policy.  Philanthropy.  Degrees where they learn how to take other people’s money without providing anything useful in return.  All the while feeding their egos with illusions of their own grandeur.  They develop the cutting edge of progressive/liberal thought.  Most of it nonsense to you and me.  But in their little Ivy League world they’re saving the world.  Even though they have no idea of how the world works.  Understand things economic.  Or the role of energy in a developed economy.  They haven’t the foggiest idea about any of these things.  But they feel that only they are qualified to regulate these things.  Because they care about us.  And the planet.  Not profits.

Liberals are also not the manliest of men.  They get in touch with their softer, feminine side.  Get in touch with their feelings.  Some even cry.  Cowboys they’re not.  They’re into conflict resolution by diplomacy and timeouts.  They can be mean and nasty.  Partake in some of the worse character assassination.  But never alone.  Or without the power of the state to protect them.  You won’t see them get into any fights.  Because when it comes to actual fisticuffs, they’re not as brave as their words.  They’re the worse of bullies.  Weaklings that have others bully for them.  That’s why these people watch soccer instead of football.  Why they don’t hunt.  Why they hate the military.  They don’t like any manly behavior.  Or manly men.  No doubt from growing up in a childhood full of wedgies and swirlies.

Big Government and High Taxes

Much of a progressive’s/liberal’s life is spent getting even.  And the best revenge is living well.  And they sure do that.  Live well.  Better than most of us.  And with our money.  Either money gained through some frivolous lawsuit.  From the ‘overhead’ costs of the charitable organizations they ‘work’ for.  (Some keep more than 50% of all donations for their ‘operating’ expenses.  While the new healthcare legislations allow insurers to use no more than 20% of their premiums on their operating expenses.  How’s that for fair?)  High taxes.  Or kickbacks from the industries they regulate.

Those in government hate those in business.  Just like they hate the jocks and bullies in high school who tormented them.  But they hate business people for a different reason.  Because they have talent.  They’re able to create something people willingly pay for.  They can’t.  Of course they can play god over these people who have talent.  And they do.  Which makes up for their feelings of inadequacy.  It’s sort of a love-hate relationship.  They love taking their profits.  But they hate them because they have profits.

People need to feel a purpose.  And so it is with progressive/liberals.  Sure, having our money is good, but floating through life in the lap of luxury leaves them with an empty feeling.  Normal people may feel guilt over taking so much of our money. They just feel bored.  Like rich kids who get in trouble because they have too much time on their hands.  Bored rich kids get in trouble.  Bored liberals write legislation.  Exploit class warfare.  And go about redistributing our wealth.  They take money from the ‘rich’ people who have jobs or own businesses and give it to the needy.  And the more of these people you support with other people’s money, the more they will keep voting for you.  This allows the liberal to live a long life in politics.  Strokes their ego.  And fills that empty feeling they have from being the worthless waste of spaces they are.  And this is why they do what they do.  Keep government big.  And taxes high.

Projecting Force to Protect National Security Interests 

Liberals want power.  They want to expand government.  And expand the welfare state.  They always have big plans when they run for office.  They are never content to sitting back and let the free market work.  Because that’s no fun.  They want to control that market.  Using some bad economic theory (i.e., Keynesian Economics), they do.  They say it’s to make the markets more efficient.  But that’s not the reason.  It’s the power.  The getting even.  And getting their hands on all of that money. 

When presidents come out of the Ivy League, their heads are filled with a lot of progressive/liberal thoughts.  Ideas about income redistribution.  Fairness.  Multiculturalism.  But little about business.  Or the real world.  And as leader of the free world, that can be a problem.  Constitutionally speaking, the president’s responsibility is the real world.  The president is the commander in chief of the armed forces.  The president treats with foreign nations.  And appoints and receives ambassadors.  Nowhere in the Constitution will you see the president being responsible for income redistribution for fairness in a multicultural welfare state.

When a president goes in with an aggressive domestic agenda he comprises his Constitutional responsibilities.  It’s like a kid playing video games instead of doing his homework.  It’s fun.  But there is a cost.  The U.S. is a superpower.  And leader of the free world.  The president’s tools include military force, foreign aid and diplomacy.  And a powerful domestic economy that makes all of this possible.  If a president focuses on domestic policy over his foreign policy, both suffer.  The high taxes reduce economic activity.  Which reduces tax receipts.  And this makes budget deficits.  The progressive/liberal will not want to cut the domestic spending.  So they cut military spending and transfer it to the domestic side.  And borrow money.  Or print it.  Weakening both the military.  And the economic well being of the nation.  Which weakens the president’s ability to project force to protect national security interests. 

An Inconvenient Truth:  We Need Oil Flowing at Market Prices  

Of course, with the liberals’ disdain for the military and the military industrial complex, they don’t care.  They don’t believe there are any dangers out there.  And, if there are, it’s because we brought them upon ourselves.  For being bullies.  I mean, who are we to be a superpower and leader of the free world?  That’s just sticking our nose into other people’s business.  It’s time we stop.  Let other people live their lives.  Besides, it’s a different world today.  We don’t need standing armies or aircraft carriers.  Who’s going to invade us?

True, the chances of a D-Day type invasion landing on our shores is remote.  But there are other ways to attack our country.  9/11 comes to mind.  And there is economic warfare.  Have you enjoyed the Great Recession, the greatest recession since the Great Depression.  Probably not.  Do you remember how it started?  With $4/gallon gasoline.  Do you remember how horrible that was?  People were demanding Congress do something about it.  Amazing, isn’t it.  How high gasoline prices can trigger a recession (of course, the subprime mortgage meltdown changed that recession into the Great Recession).  Keeping oil flowing at market prices, then, is a U.S. national security interest.  Because a spike in gasoline prices will crash the healthiest of economies into recession.  Of course, this goes contrary to everything a progressive/liberal holds true.  But it’s an inconvenient truth they need to learn.

That’s why we’re in the Middle East.  We may get more of our oil from Canada, but we get some from OPEC.  More importantly, our trading partners do, too.  If that oil supply to the Western economies gets shut down, we will suffer a recession closer to the Great Depression than the Great Recession.  Oil is important to national security.  Income redistribution isn’t.  Or using the military for humanitarian purposes.  As bad as the suffering was in Darfur, Rwanda, Sri Lanka, etc., we can’t help everyone.  It would stretch our military too thin, cost more than we can afford and risk the lives of those in the military on a mission that doesn’t impact national security.  And all of this would impede the president in carrying out his constitutional responsibilities.  Protecting our national security.

We need Grownups in Charge of our Foreign Policy

Presidents often hailed for their great domestic agendas (FDR and LBJ, for example) have created economic messes that future generations have to clean up.  And because their real interests were in domestic policy, they bungled their foreign policy.  FDR may have rallied the nation to win World War II, but his naïveté gave us the Cold War.  And LBJ’s Whiz Kids mismanaged the Vietnam War so badly that the fallout nearly ignited a civil war in America.  The country changed.  And it’s never been the same since.

Kids don’t like doing their homework.  They’d rather play their games.  In this respect progressives/liberals are very much like children.  They, too, like to play their games.  And don’t like to do their homework.  But the world is a dangerous place.  We need to do our homework.  To learn the lessons of history.  More importantly, we need grownups in charge of our foreign policy.

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FUNDAMENTAL TRUTH #28: “Politicians love failure because no one ever asked government to fix something that was working.” -Old Pithy

Posted by PITHOCRATES - August 24th, 2010

GOVERNMENT FIXES PROBLEMS.  Or so they say.  And the people think.  When something isn’t right in the country, the people demand that government do something about it.  And politicians are more than happy to oblige.  It strokes their egos.  Increases their budgets.  Their staffs.  And they get to do what they like best.  Tell others what to do.  Well, that, and spend money.

Politicians are happiest when government grows.  Because when it does, there’s more stuff to do.  More people to manage.  Bigger offices to move into.  More people to hire.  And the more they hire, the more people are indebted to them.  Who love them.  Respect them.  Are in awe of them.  Which inflates their egos even more.  As if that was even possible.  And, of course, there’s more money to spend. 

As government grows, so does their job security.  I mean, there may come the day that the good people may not reelect them.  As devastating as that may be, they can be comforted in the fact that they will leave Washington far richer than they were upon entering Washington.  And there’ll always be a place for them in an ever expanding government.  A cabinet position.  An agency position.  Or, perhaps, they’ll be named a czar.  Of something.  In charge of a policy issue.  Away from the oversight powers of Congress.  Anything is possible.  As long as government grows.  And there is more money to spend.

And just why is that?  Why does government continue to grow?  Simple.  They don’t fix problems.  They’re always ‘fixing’ problems.  But they’re never fixed.  They’re always a work in progress.  Because a fixed problem doesn’t require their services any longer.

DON’T THINK SO?  Suppose the government gives you a federal job.  An important one.  You’re in charge of the Office of Getting People to Happily Accept the Banning of Smoking in Public Places.  They give you a big office.  A staff.  A budget.  And a title.  You feel pretty good.  Important.  You diligently go about your work.  You take polls.  You analyze data.  You place public service announcements.  You intensify your polling before and after local laws are implemented banning smoking in public places. 

You analyze your data.  You correlate satisfaction with dissatisfaction.  Pacification with irritability.  Your numbers look good.  As more and more localities ban smoking from most public spaces the more your numbers show that the satisfaction/dissatisfaction ratio is trending favorably.  The trending is flatter with pacification/irritability but the trending is still favorable.  You conclude that these new laws come in, on average, at 9.875.  And that’s very good on the scale you created to measure overall effectiveness and acceptance of new laws to influence social behavior.   You happily report your findings to your superior.

“What are you,” your superior asks, “stupid?  Trying to put yourself out of a job?  Are you trying to cut my budget?  Because that’s exactly what’s going to happen if you turn in a report like this.  Now here’s what you’re going to do.  You’re going to report that your findings indicate some improvements in some select demographics.  But overall there is still much work to do.  Then write up a proposal for additional work required and throw in a budget that increases your current budget by 12%.  For starters.  Then I’ll critique your findings and find your funding request insufficient because of a mistake you made in your analysis.  Have it on my desk by the end of the week.”

Sound ridiculous?  That’s probably because it is.  And probably all too true.  I mean, how many federal programs do politicians shut down because they were successful in achieving their objective?  I think few.  If any.  Because no one wants to put themselves out of a job.  Especially a federal job.  Because there’s no job like a federal job.  At least, not in the private sector.

IN THE PRIVATE sector, your work has to have value.  When people are voluntarily paying for goods or services, you can’t have fat payrolls and fat budgets to produce goods and services no one wants.  You can only do that when government pays.  And by government I mean you and me.  With our taxes.  Which we have little choice but to pay.  For we are forced to under penalty of law.  Which can be pretty persuasive in making you pay for stuff you don’t want.  For we wouldn’t normally give away our hard-earned pay for the ridiculous wastes of resources known as government work.  To make the lives of federal workers better than ours.  And speaking of federal workers, what’s that joke?  Question:  What is federal work?  Answer:  Work for the unemployable.  There’s a lot of truth in that.  For a lot of these people couldn’t make it in the private sector.  And if they had to, they would only do so with the utmost bitter resentment.  They’d resent the longer hours.  The huge cut in pay.  The huge cut in benefits.  And the accountability.

You see, in the private sector, failure has consequences.  People get fired.  If a business is losing money because of silly projects they’re pursuing, the board of directors will fire the corporate officers.  If it’s a small business, the owner may lose his or her life savings.  And their house (which is often mortgaged up to the hilt to support their business).  There will be change after failure.  And it will be painful to many.  Unfeeling.  Cold.  But necessary.  But it’s different in government. 

When politicians fail, they reward themselves.  When their policies fail, the politicians simply say they need more time to make those policies work.  And more money.  That’s always the answer.  And they get away with it.  More money.  Keep throwing money at the problem.  No matter what a train wreck their programs turn out to be.  Or what the unintended consequences are.

POLITICIANS LIKE TO tinker.  Often in things they shouldn’t.  Because when they do, bad things often happen.  Those unintended consequences.  For when it comes down to it, they’re not very smart.  They could have graduated from their Ivy League schools at the top of their class, but they often know squat about the things they’re meddling in.  Most of them are lawyers.  And what does a lawyer know about economics?  Foreign policy?  National security?  Bupkis.  But it never stops them. 

And it doesn’t even matter.  Because their motives were honorable.  They acted with the best of intentions.  At least, that’s what they say.  As do their supporters.  And when everything goes to hell in a handbasket, they don’t mind.  Just more problems for government to fix.  More programs.  More staff.  And more money to spend.

Of course, we ultimately pay the price for their actions.  Whether it’s recession, depression or a more dangerous world to live in.  Which is often the case.  More times than not.

EVER WONDER WHY everything is a crisis?  Because a crisis needs urgent action.  By politicians in Washington.  And that urgent action is typically vast new government programs with an exploding federal bureaucracy.  Along with explosive federal spending.  And because it’s a crisis, there’s no time to lose.  If we don’t take immediate action the consequences could be dire.  There’s no time for debate.  For opposition.  To read a bill.  No.  We have to act and we have to act NOW.  Before this crisis gets any worse.

And when things do get worse after we take all that urgent action, you know what they’ll say?  That they were wrong?  Yeah, right.  In some fantasy world maybe.  No.  Instead, they’ll say just imagine how bad things would have been if they didn’t act like they did.  That we should be thankful things are only as bad as they are, for they could have been a whole lot worse if government didn’t act.  Why, they’ll be patting themselves on the back.  While you suffer more.

Hard to fight that logic.  I mean, they can say anything.  If their action takes unemployment to record levels, they can say unemployment would have been twice as high if they didn’t do what they did.  Twice as high would be worse.  But how do they know it would have been twice as high?  How can they prove it?  Well, they don’t have to.  Because you can’t disprove it.  And those who gamble know that a tie goes to the house.  So they’re right.  Because you can’t prove otherwise.  So they act accordingly.  And their supporters go along.  And the answer to the new problems that are worse than the original problems?  You guessed it.  More of the same.  More government programs.  More government spending.  At least, that’s what the historical record shows.

POLITICIANS LOVE FAILURE.  They thrive on it.  It gives them life.  Success, on the other hand, destroys them.  Removes their raison d’être.  Their reason for being.  A prospering nation, after all, doesn’t need government to fix anything.  And that’s no good.  Especially if that’s the business you’re in.  Fixing things.  Fixers need to fix.  But it needs to remain a work in progress.  So there’s still fixing to do.  Always.  And forever.   

And they’ll never let a good crisis go to waste.

www.PITHOCRATES.com

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