P.

Profit, Loss, and Proportionality of Reward

The nature of the market system, and more specifically the profit and loss system, is such that it rewards those who contribute in a positive way, and penalizes those who do not contribute positively.

Entrepreneurs act in the immediate term, in hopes of profiting in the medium or longer term. The future is uncertain. There is no guarantee of a profit.

The entrepreneur either makes a profit, or experiences a loss. If he makes a profit, it is a sign that he has benefitted those who bought his product or service. He is rewarded for employing scarce resources wisely.

If he experiences a loss, it is a sign that he has wasted resources, employed them in a way that did not benefit the individuals in society. He is penalized for wasting resources.

The greater the benefit provided, the greater the profit— and a sign to other entrepreneurs that there is great need in this area.

While the leftists, socialists, politicians, economically ignorant commentators lambaste the profit maker, he is the employer of resources that deserves praise; for he is the very decision maker benefitting the world around him! They ought to express frustration at those experiencing losses— for they are unwisely employing resources. But thankfully, they are given just penalty to the very extent of their monetary loss.

The price system has just rewards and penalties built in— no politicians necessary.

D.

Dissent from the Social Themes!

I recently wrote on Jeff Deist’s talk at PFS, regarding the Zeitgeist Libertarians. The more I think about it, the more I realize the importance to emphasizing his core point: mainstream libertarians disagree with statist means, but they are distinct from us paleo-libertarians in that they embrace the Dominant Social Themes; that is, they often speak of social goals in terms of the same leftist ends as the run of the mill establishment liberal.

But libertarianism doesn’t imply that we have to assent to the leftist themes— and its amazing that even so-called Republicans are often so leftist in their thinking. Left-libertarians often say that the democrats are agreeable in their social liberalism and republicans are despicable in their social conservatism; therefore, we should take the social liberalism of the democrats and combine it with the economic conservatism of the Republicans.

But actually, Republicans are almost nearly just as bad on Dominant Social Themes, especially relating to the meta-view of recent social progress.

Contra popular opinion:

    Diversity is not per se our strength (but neither is racial uniformity for its own sake)
    Voting is neither a right nor is it a boon for liberty
    Democracy is the enemy of justice, social harmony, and human progress
    Immigration is not inherently good, and is in fact often a tool by those who anticipate that immigrants will benefit their political aspirations.
    All cultures are not equal in their morality or contribution to civilization’s advancement
    The social classes do not owe one another as a matter of justice
    Europeans were the great benefactors of western civilization in their emphasis on private property-based justice, increasingly low time-preferences, praise of capital investment, individual and family oriented social arrangements where dissent was allowed and fostered over against the mob. This does not mean Europeans are better; it means that all individuals should appreciate their contribution to society instead of working against them, as a racial class, in order to promote more barbarous cultures.
    Reality, truth are objective and can be known, argued for, and used to judge emotional thinking.
    Our struggle is not against “rugged individualism,” but against collectivism and group-think
    We don’t need to get money out of politics, we need to get government out of business. Poor candidates that have no corporate backing are not necessarily better even though we live in the unjust and economically detrimental system of corporatism (or crony capitalism)– in fact, often poor candidates merely push for a different kind of socialism: a socialism based on conflict against the rich and strife against the capitalists (without whom we’d all live in poverty).
    A nation is strong to the extent that it is made up of voluntarily individuals and families, with strong cultural ties, a common language, common interests, and common values— all of these indicate that a breakup of the Union is important and vital for social peace and the alleviation of current social tensions, almost all of which are caused by the state’s political grasp over our lives. Indeed, unity in spite of all our vast differences, interests, cultures, preferences, lifestyles, and so forth indicate that such unity is utopian and will be necessarily authoritarian.
    An increasing number of women and minority legislators is not per se progress because progress is defined by the ideas assented to and promoted, not the group identity from which a person comes. The sex and race of the leadership is meaningless compared to the ideas held.
    Forcing diversity on a people group ends in misery, despair, and conflict. Democracy is the enemy of progress and civilization and mandated diversity fuels the flames of destruction.
M.

McCarthy: The Anti-Western Faith

In the fall 2018 publication of Modern Age, the great Dan McCarthy’s Editor’s note offered a reflection on the transition from Christianity to what he calls “secular universalism” as the dominant faith subconsciously adopted by society.

He argues that the magnificent shift away from western Christianity (in a broad, vague sense), is not a shift away from faith— its just that the object, so to speak, of the faith has been swapped out. This has consequences, and McCarthy, a true traditionalist conservative who writes like one, mentions a few of them. Due to the perversion of faith,

the spiritual is turned into the temporal, and salvation turns into a worldly concept….. [This] creates longings in political and social life that cannot be fulfilled. This degrades our worldly practices as well as the human spirit, as the means of politics and economics are misapplied toward ends they can never achieve.

Then he applies this to the vastly popular and trending “social justice” theme:

“Social justice,” with its complex mythology of victims and oppressors— saints and sinners— is a cutting-edge development of this secular universalism. It takes from Christianity a certain feeling for guilt and expiation, but atonement is not to be made to God…. Instead, political and other public rituals can purify: denouncing nonbelievers and heretics on social media, for example, or silencing the voice of error by enforcing the right “community standards,” as devised by corporations eager to demonstrate their acceptance of political morality.

What is remarkable is not that there is today some private policing of speech— and, by implication, thought— but the unforgiving and uncharitable political nature of the orthodoxy. The new faith does not respect conscience. How can it if moral truth is found only in one’s conformity to the correct attitudes held by others, and not in one’s relationship to anything beyond humanity?

I would like to simply copy the rest of the article into this space, but this was meant as a short reference to the editor’s note. In any event, I think it adequately summarizes the difficulties built in to modern social life, and all the social engineering trends that have been applied to the New Secular Faith. In all this, McCarthy is likely echoing the work of Paul Gottfried’s work on Multiculturalism and the Politics of Guilt. Gottfried takes a very detailed look at the religious roots of the paradigms and language of modern secularist faith— especially as they relate to the social justice phenomenon where there are classes to victims and oppressors and where the jobs, among others, of the state is to help remedy this sinful situation.

What I am interested in especially is watching all this develop not only in the general secular institutions (the media, higher education, corporate marketing efforts, the government itself), but also on the evangelical social left— where there is some restraint as to the endorsement of specific personal sins (homosexuality, for instance), but who nevertheless have adopted secularist social frameworks and tensions (victims and oppressors in a class struggle based on various imposed criteria).

G.

Gary North: Politics as Self-Esteem

Very good essay here by Gary North. Excerpt:

Democrats and Republicans think of Presidential candidates as “their men.” They think that these men represent them. In what way? Not their ideas, surely, which Presidential candidates share only randomly with hard-core party members, which is why they invariably ignore their party’s platform once they are in office. The platform is never mentioned again. The faithful party member nevertheless thinks, “he’s my man.”

The suggestion is ludicrous. He is the Council on Foreign Relations’ man. He represents either CFR Team A or CFR Team B. This year, he is also Skull & Bones’ man. This is a first for Bones. In the past, Bones has been content merely to represent half of the voters, always Republicans: William Howard Taft, George H. W. Bush, George W. Bush. This year, Bones cannot lose. When you think about this, it is amazing. An oath-bound Yale University secret society that inducts only 15 people a year has picked off both candidates. Isn’t democracy grand? It is the voice of the people.

Voters are confused about political cause and effect. They think of a Presidential candidate as their man. In fact, they are his people. They exist so as to get his branch of the CFR elected. Fanatically loyal party voters are the party’s hip pocket voters. The party can safely pay no attention to them. The party must court voters who are not committed to the ideals of its core supporters, who in turn overlook the fact that their man will sell them out on every major issue that did not have support from the CFR. Most of them have never heard of the CFR.

Voters today see politics as a game: “them vs. us.” Clinton was a two-timer, so he remains beloved by Democrats. Why? Because he let Democrats feel good about themselves. He cut Federal welfare. No problem. He pushed through NAFTA. No problem. He produced not one major domestic political victory. No problem. His tax hike barely sprinkled the rich, let alone soaked them. No problem. He lied repeatedly and got caught. No problem. He had sex with that woman. No problem. Why was there never a problem? For the same reason that a loud-mouthed felon running back on a Super Bowl-winning team has no problem with fans. “He’s ours!”

This is politics as the voter’s personal self-image. Politics has almost nothing to do with ideological issues. It has everything to do with the voters’ quest for self-esteem. “He kept them out. I therefore feel better about myself. I’m on the winning team.” That Ronald Reagan starred in a movie called The Winning Team was appropriate.

Republican anti-abortionists and fiscal conservatives suffer the same fate. Nobody in the Republican Party takes them seriously. Toss one bone to them per term — no stem cell research, or a one-shot tax cut — and that satisfies them. Like lap dogs, they come when they are called.

A.

All the Old Blogposts

A lot of the content recently (and over the next few days) on this new blog of mine will be many of the short, more quotable, pieces I’ve written over the years. I have a decent amount of essays but the shorter quick thoughts get lost over time. Since this blog is mainly for those, and associated with my new FB page (please “like” it), I am trying to get them onto this site so they are all in one place.

This blog is more broad and general than my other main sites (AL and RL)– I was working so hard to choose audience carefully when I posted political and even religious thoughts on my personal Facebook profile so I decided to just have a separate public page (as opposed to profile) that people could like and follow if they were into that kind go thing. Mostly these are quotes (from my reading or from my longer essays) and quick thoughts on economics, current events, business, and culture that are more personal and “from the hip” in nature than in accordance with the more doctrinaire statements I want at the main site.

In any case, I’m trying to gather lost content from various places so bear with me.

C.

Crime is in Terms of the Individual

Crimes are those actions which have as their victims actual individual human beings. There is no abstract “crime against society” as the Progressives want you to think; nor is there a “crime against the state” as fascists want you to think. Rather, a crime is something which actually aggresses the person or property of one’s neighbor.

In this way, actual justice has to do with crimes and there is no such thing as “social justice,” much to the disdain of the socialist or liberal Christian. Any crime which aggresses hundreds of people is a “crime against many individuals,” not a “social crime.” Society has no rights, for society is not a thing in itself.

W.

Why People Love Socialism

If every time the government intervenes (known as economic interventionism) into the broader economy there is an eventual wave of resulting economic pain, and if the political and academic classes continue to describe our system as free market or capitalistic, then the entirely predictable result is a mass embrace of socialism as the solution to said economic pain.

The adoration of socialism by the younger generation is not merely a result of their natural ignorance on these matters; though because they are products of a highly bureaucratized and pro-government system, this is obviously the case. Rather, the espousal is a result of what they have been taught via schools, news, entertainment, political speeches, and other sources of intellectual influence. They have been taught both that we live in a free market, and that government is always the remedy.

Because the narrative is that we live in a free market, the benefit to the political class is twofold. 1) people can blame capitalism instead of government for economic pains; 2) Solutions must always come in the form of new government activity, since that has yet to be tried.
Thus, the masses currently clamor for the utopias of socialism to free them from the evils of capitalism, all while living under the rotten system of interventionism.

D.

Democracy is a Scourge

We are told above that democracy is about ordinary people ruling themselves– but this is the opposite of the case. Democracy is stripping the decision making power from individuals and placing it in the hands of the mob, which uses the via media of the state as its weapon of enforcement. Far from being able to rule ourselves, democracy is a system in which the majority of the people are able gang up on those who dissent, from those who wish to live in peace, safe from the schemes and shenanigans of those that seek to determine the lifestyle of others.

It is not democracy, but libertarianism that truly and by definition allows all people, especially the ordinary, to live as they desire, which is the meaning of ruling one’s life. Democracy, to the extent that it undermines and wages war on the right of the property owner to do as he pleases with his own property, is the antithesis of ordinary people ruling themselves.

Democracy introduces politics, and the clashes of group interests that come with it, into an otherwise relatively peaceful existence. Democracy and the means of its expression, politics, exacerbate social tensions and pit people groups against each other. Democracy is one of the major causes of social unrest in our modern world and to expand democracy in pursuit of democratic socialism is to continue farther along this path.

A.

Anti-Nationalist Internationalists

Political leaders and their lapdogs in the media and higher education speak of nationalism as if it merely consists of neo-fascist efforts to purge the world on behalf of a specific nation-state over against the other alternative of a globally unified body that governs the world.

But these nationalist movements (including Trump’s) are actually just efforts to localize political representation. The national is preferable to the international. And the local is preferable to the national. And so on such that every comparison prefers decentralization to centralization.

In other words, nationalism is smeared today and placed in the most egregious of contexts whenever it is spoken of by the global elite (Macron in France for instance). But they smear it because more nationalism means less control for them at an international level.
Nationalism is merely the idea that there is a culture, a people connected by language and customs, that is more important than giving all that up for some vague idealistic internationalist vision. Of course, the left (which has also destroyed the once conservative parties in the US), has done a great job of destroying the culture such that there no longer is much of a “nation” at a federal level— which means secession and nullification and even more localization is called for. But compared to internationalization, nationalist movements around the world (Brexit and the dissenting and agitating separatist grassroots spirit that elected Trump) are healthy and needed.

More thoughts on nationalism posted in comments.

P.

Politics is the Enemy of Civilization

Politics is the means by which interpersonal conflict is systematized and class struggle is born.

Politics takes the natural disagreements we may have as individual human beings and places them on a pedestal as the only things worth talking about.

Politics is the rejection of self-determination and the handing over of individual decision making to a corrupt and treacherous body of scoundrels to set the path forward for an entire people.