Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Another Note to a Friend on Facebook

Michael Lumish

I tend to be more sympathetic to the progressive-left's economic message than their racial message, which is non-liberal, promotes race hate, victim hierarchies, violence, and national divisions.

I think, however, that it goes off the rails when it assigns malicious intent to those who disagree.

You quote Bernie Sanders:

"Trickle down economics is a fraudulent theory designed by the rich and their think tanks in order to protect the billionaires and large corporations."

Or it is a flawed theory designed to lift all economic boats.

See, that's the difference.

You want to instigate "class war" whereas I just want to see a continued steady decrease in poverty levels.

We both agree that "trickle down" economics makes little sense. My opposition, however, is not grounded in Marxist ideology but in general common sense. Merely because a corporation receives tax breaks for the purpose of increasing profits does not mean that this will translate into the hiring of more labor.

Where Bernie and I disagree is that he seems to view trickle down as a cynical attempt by bad people to rob regular Americans on behalf of the wealthy.

Sadly, I have no such mind-reading abilities and am also perfectly aware that people can promote the worst ideas while doing so for the very best reasons.

For example, much of the progressive-left promotes the notion that white people, particularly white men, are a nefarious group in need of a good ass kicking.

This view is promoted by "identity politics" which posits a hierarchy of racial and gendered victimhood and dockets people (by skin color or gendered orientation) on that hierarchy.

In this way it recreates the very thing that MLK, Jr. warned against and does so, laughably enough, in the name of social justice and universal human rights.


  1. Someone who visits this place has posited that Republicans just want to make rich people even richer AND make everyone else poor. This kind of thinking assumes that the US has not had free and fair elections every 2 years for over 200 years. It doesn't seem to me that such a program makes electoral sense for a party that would want to continue to hold power. The idea that someone might have a different opinion on economic well-being that could be well-intentioned but flawed doesn't seem to fly. It must be some form of malevolent evil animating such people. I find this sort of thinking not intellectual at all, but rather fundamentalist and medieval.
    I've had this fight with family members and it's not pretty. Entertaining the idea that the opposition might simply have a different point of view earns epithets of traitor. Discussing these things as a competition of ideas that might both have good and bad points to some extent or other is simply not on the menu.
    It's quite sick. I don't pretend to be an expert on anything other than what I do.

    You've illustrated quite well what it is about Bernie that bothered me. Even though I'm sure that some entities would just like to take a tax cut and pocket it, all business owners can't be wrong when they say that regulations and taxes get in the way of business success and expansion, which historically tends to involve the hiring of more workers. That regulations can be necessary, but also in some cases be onerous and counterproductive are not mutually exclusive ideas. They are ideas that should be discussed.
    There are greedy and evil people in this world. Some of them are rich, and some aren't.

    1. Why do we assume that money received from taxation is always well spent?
      When government has too much money it can decide to use it to finance social engineering, college indoctrination, resettlement of hostile foreign groups, creation of dependent voting blocks, etc. Basically what US government has been doing for decades. I'd rather they just stole it.

    2. The question at the moment is will the fire remain hot.

  2. Generally, the people shouting 'power to the people' are the people they want the 'people' to give all the power to. The government rarely if ever surrenders even a little bit of its power.

    But at its base, not only is Marxism nonsense economics, but economics itself isn't a social order or remedy or curse, good or bad. Any more than any other set of rules that circumscribe large group behavior. It's not intended to be a 'good'. If you want 'good' then put some checks and balances in to keep it from running out of control. But sweeping aside the reality of how people ARE is nonsense. Pick any Marxist economy past or present and what you see are 3 economies. The official one, which doesn't work, the economy of the elites, which works for them by design, and the black market for everyone else, to keep themselves alive. Creating a massive official economy ALWAYS results in the growth of the other two. Now a Marxist will tell you that capitalism does that too. And they are correct, to a point. That's why we have LAWS - to reign in corruption. But its corruption is no worse and often far less harmful than under other systems. If you live under an umbrella that doesn't restrain your attempts at wealth you're more likely not to cheap compared to one that places all sorts of arbitrary and unfair systems that do.

    As to taxes, the issue for westerners is value not level of taxation. In France and other socialist countries the taxes are quite high because people accept them at that level. For two reasons; 1 they see a value that comes back to THEM. That is they are NOT redistributive. Whereas in the US the Middle Class is told to fork over money which by design will NEVER come back to them. And 2 if you push taxes high enough people are no longer compensated with money but with noncash goods and services of equal value. Which again feeds back into this value-loop.

    So these Marxists - and BTW have you ever met a POOR one? Do understand their own dogma. Thieving from the middle class to give to the political base of angry poor isn't a system. Given enough time it always collapses.

  3. Socialism is good for your health. I just read somewhere that Venezuelans have lost an average 19 pounds due to food shortages. Should our new meme be "Make America Lean Again!"

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    1. speaking of Facebook, plz spread this on FB: http://i.imgur.com/E3Gu0p2.png