Tag Archives: Leftism

47%: The Liberal Goal

Recently, all the big political news has been about Romney’s 47% comments.

It has already been noted that this is true, the vast majority of federal income taxes are paid by the rich, while almost half pay noting. Even liberal “fact-checkers” don’t disagree.

Some liberals quibble that the poor pay comparatively more in payroll taxes, but this is a fallacious comparison, as payroll taxes are specifically designated to social security, unemployment insurance, and medicare. These are not general taxes (or at least shouldn’t be), they are taxed premiums dedicated to providing  insurance and retirement guarantees and should be treated as such. Comparing payroll taxes to general taxation is idiotic.

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Everybody reading this already knows that a society where more than half the people do not contribute to general taxation and a significant population receive more in government benefits than are contributing can not sustain itself for long. Eventually the ability to pay for bread and circuses collapses.

The US is on it’s way there. 1/16 people are on disability, 1/7 on food stamps, and almost alf of people receive some sort of government benefits. Half of young workers are either unemployed or underemployed. In addition, the government controls about 2/5 of the economy and 1/5 of the employed work for the the government. Almost half of people don’t pay income taxes.  And government  is growing.

That’s not what I want to talk about today. If you can’t figure out why this is unhealthy for society, I’m not quite sure what I could say to convince you.

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It has also been noted that getting people dependent on government is the liberal strategy and has been the liberal strategy since FDR.

So why are liberals so angry over Romney’s quote, when it’s been their strategy for decades?

For exactly that reason; they do not want people to understand their strategy. Liberalism is the ideology of the state; that is all the various interests that make up liberalism have in common. For a core of elite individuals, the expansion of the state is their reason d’etre. Their purpose is the Gramscianslow march through culture” to destroy traditional “oppressive” institutions and replace it with the state.

But pointing that the expansion of the state is the goal, harms their ability to expand the state. They can’t come right out and say their purpose in the anglosphere. Englishmen are culturally suspicious of and hostile towards the state and inclined towards classical liberalism or liberal conservatism, with American Englishmen being the most hostile.

Even most liberals do not agree with the end goal of the Gramscian march. They are mostly decent people (ie: the “useful idiots“) who want to help the poor (or some other cause) but are either too lazy, too soft-hearteded, and/or too misinformed to realize the final outcomes of the policies they propose.

So, the left-liberals  can not come out and say their true goals, which is the expansion of the state. So, they cloak their desire to expand the state behind other justifications: keynesian economics, feminism, anti-poverty, anti-racism, the environment, equality, etc.

No matter what justification they use or what problem they say they want to solve, though, the answer is always the same: expand the state.

And the the useful idiots all line up in support.

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The Gramscian strategy works well. Each time the government expands, it is almost impossible to destroy that expansion in the future, so you only have to take it a bit at a time. A temporary expansion here and a minor intrusion there and eventually the government controls half the economy. As the government takes over more control of life, opportunities to live life outside government decrease. Individuals become increasingly dependent on government at levels they themselves don’t even realize. Eventually, the government becomes the only thing holding society together, however poorly.

The government begins to replace parents, it replaces family, it replaces local charity, it replaces local churches, it replaces local community. Eventually,  it replaces the entirety of civil society.

If you want to see the end state of the Gramscian march, simply look at the black community in the US. Their families are destroyed, most of their children grow up without a father, a large proportion of their males end up criminals, dependence on the state is high, and their civil society is destroyed. The black community has been destroyed by the welfare society government has put onto it.

And guess what, blacks vote almost entirely Democrat, the party that fought for their enslavement and for Jim Crow, just so the state benefits that are destroying them keep flowing.

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The left- liberal ideologues are intent on forcing the government on you, so that you become dependent on it, so you will support government’s further intrusion into and control of your life. That is and has been their strategy for decades.

They want you dependent.

Romney simply pointed out the results of the strategy. This is why they are attacking him so violently, because once you know that government dependency is, you might ask why it is.
If you ask why it is, you might understand their strategy. Once you understand their strategy, you might resist it.

So, the question is, do you want to be dependent on government as they manipulate you?


Liberal Economic Stupidity

Today, I am going to comment on two pieces of economic stupidity from liberals.

The first piece is from a Democracy Now! interview with Matt Taibbi (h/t: Clarissa), in which he writes:

Well, Mitt Romney is really the representative of an entire movement that’s taken over the American business world in the last couple of decades. You know, America used to be-especially the American economy was built upon this brick-and-mortar industrial economy, where we had factories, we built stuff, and we sold it here in America, and we exported it all over the world. That manufacturing economy was the foundation for our wealth and power for a couple of centuries. And then, in the ’80s, we started to transform ourselves from a manufacturing economy to a financial economy. And that process, which, you know, on Wall Street we call financialization, was really led that-sort of this revolution, where instead of making products, we made transactions, we made financial products, like credit default swaps and collateralized debt obligations. We created money through financial transactions rather than building products and selling them around the world. And that revolution was really led by people like Mitt Romney. And the advantage of financialization, from the point of view of the very rich and the people who run the American economy, is that it was extremely efficient at extracting wealth and kicking it upward, whereas the old manufacturing economy had the sort of negative effect of spreading around to the entire population. In the financialization revolution, you can take all of the money, and you don’t have to spread it around with anybody. And Mitt Romney was kind of a symbol of that fundamental shift in our economy.

Now, this kind of argument is made all the time by liberals: that evil businesses and bankers are destroying the manufacturing sector and traditional blue-collar jobs.

The problem is its wrong. Now, don’t get me wrong, the traditional blue-collar model is dying in North America, but the left has the culprit wrong. If they want to see why it is dying, they only need to look in the mirror.

The manufacturing economy is dying because of government overregulation, pushed by liberals. Between an increasingly harsh regulatory environment, brutal taxation levels, the manipulation of local zoning regulations, corrupt unions, political interference, etc., etc. the left has made it all but impossible for blue-collar industry to thrive.

As the Captain has written: capital flight is a built-in feature of socialism.

If you make it impossible for industrialists to create industry in North America, do not be surprised when no industry is created in North America.

As just one example of the war leftists are engaging on blue collar industry, we can look to the Keystone XL Pipeline. The US recently had a perfect opportunity to create thousands of traditional blue-collar jobs. Canada was practically begging the US to allow this pipeline to be built through the US and TransCanada had plans drawn up and was ready to build. XL would have created 20,000 jobs and huge revenues for both Canada and the US. It never happened. Why?

Because a bunch of idiot leftists protested it and the government killed it.

This is not an isolated event.

I lied earlier; I’m going to provide more than one example,  to show it’s not just oil pipelines. Let’s look at a few examples of random blue-collar industries:

I could go on forever, but why bother. The simple fact is, at every step, across every industrial sector, leftist ideologues are trying their damnedest to destroy any industry here in North America.

These ideologues have created a government of over-regulation and over-taxation that is destroying blue-collar industry. The programs these people have put in place costs the economy $1.75 trillion a year.

After the huge swath of destruction they have wreaked across the North American industrial landscape, I can hardly believe they have the gall to turn around and complain about disappearing blue collar jobs.

Are leftists so stupid that they can not see the very visible side effects of their ideology or are they just plain evil?

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As an almost completely irrelevant aside, there is at least one major company (the second-largest private company in the US) I can name of the top of my head that manufactures most of its products in the US. It’s called Koch Industries. Unsurprisingly, it is the target of constant attacks and smears by the left.

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The second piece of idiocy I’m going to comment on is from Slate. Michael Moran writes:

Are we getting back to normal? Well, of course not: times were not normal to start. To get back to that normal would be national suicide – an asset bubble fueled normal more unsustainable than anything either of our political parties is flirting with today.

Do we really pine for the bubble years? Remember, folks, the “prosperity” now implied by those who as about “four years ago”  were fuelled by a runaway financial system that treated peoples’ homes, jobs and lives like so many chips in a casino.

Would we be “better off” if the bubble loomed over us again?  No, we’d be walking toward an even deeper cliff.

I agree with this, an economy based upon a bubble is stupid, and not something we want to return to.

In the same article he also writes:

First, the view that President Obama wants to emerge from Charlotte: Four years ago the country was sliding over the edge of an economic cliff. Today, we’ve got one leg back on top, and even with the Republican congressional caucus holding onto the other leg and screaming “I’d rather fall to my death than climb back onto that debt-strewn precipice” – we’re clawing our way to safety.

Ironically, his economic policies are not the real problem. Again, this was always going to take a long time to solve. We can argue whether there should have been more stimulus (I think so). But on the finer economic points, the general direction has been correct.

Recessions, as Europe demonstrates every single day, are no time to cut government spending: the result is a vicious circle in which austerity kills growth and deficits become nearly insurmountable (especially in countries that have to fund them on the open market). So even if deficits rise during a recession, the idea is to hasten the return of growth that, in the end, is the only real solution to such gaps.

It is very clear he is in favour of Keynesian stimulus and against reigning in government spending.

Somehow, he doesn’t see the contradiction between these two positions. One can not be against a bubble economy and be for economic stimulus, as economic stimulus is the creation of a bubble economy.

Government spending inherently creates economic bubbles.

An economic bubble occurs when the nominal value of something is inflated far beyond its intrinsic worth.

Government spending, particularly stimulus spending, is spending on goods or services individuals are not willing to spend on and invest in on an individual level.

In other words, stimulus is spending on goods and services more than its inherent market value.

Anybody advocating Keynesian stimulus is advocating the government creates a bubble by investing where the free market is unwilling to invest.

(There is one difference though, bubbles on the private market will generally pop at some point in the short-medium term when someone realizes its idiotic. On the other hand, government supported bubbles can be propped-up almost indefinitely through tax-payer funding, at least until the state runs out of money).

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Anyhow, that completes today’s round of liberal stupidity.


The New Left vs. The Old Left

Will S. writes about the bizarre decision of governments to allow expatriates to vote as their own riding. In the post-script he notes:

Regarding Mrs. Lemaire’s victory, isn’t it odd that a ‘riding’ consisting of many employed by the financial sector (i.e. the private sector) would end up going Socialist?  Of course, it wasn’t just the French living in London or elsewhere in the U.K. who elected Mrs. Lemaire, but also ones living in Ireland, and the Scandinavian and Baltic states, too, so perhaps that’s how it happened.  On the other hand, I note that the North American riding was also won by a Socialist candidate, Corinne Narassiguin, who apparently is a New York banker!  What strange times we live in.

I do not find it all that odd. This is the difference between the old left and the new left (or liberal-left).

The old left was a movement of blue-collar workers out to get a better deal for themselves. It was a heavily unionized movement and, in the West, was mostly white. It was not overly radical on social issues, as blue-collar workers don’t generally tend towards that direction.

In the first half of the century, most Western nation began to put in place the beginning of the welfare state (pension plans & employment insurance), workplace safety laws, minimum wages, and other such regulations to protect workers, this eased the impetus of the old left. As long as blue-collar workers had jobs that provided them decent comfort and didn’t have to worry that an accident would leave them destitute, they were mostly politically content.

Enter the new left. This was a political movement focused on social issues: feminism, environmentalism, peace activism, anti-racism, etc. Economic issues were still of some import, but were pushed to the back.

In addition, the radical anti-capitalism of the old left began to melt away as the Communism began to demonstrate the horrors that occurred when you eliminated capitalism. It was replaced by a desire for an economic system of Keynesian-regulatory state superstructure based upon a capitalist substructure.

In the US, this takeover of the Democrat party by the new left occurred following the McGovernite rift in 72. Under the new left, liberal/left-wing parties began to shed their traditional base of the white working class, and created a new base, an alliance of academics, technocrats, white-collar bureaucrats (and their unions), and a bought-off underclass. The union movement began to trend towards white collar government work from blue-collar industrial work, until today where unions are primarily made of government workers.

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So, what does this have to do with the financial sector?

The first is that new left/liberal parties are strongly based on the ideologies held by the educated upper-middle class (the underclass doesn’t really contribute to ideas overly much anymore, they just vote reliably as long as state benefits flow). These ideologies tend to be based on post-materialist values (environmentalism, feminism, etc.) rather than material values. In economics, they are “pragmatic” (read Keynesian), as they generally benefit from the current economic order, but feel guilt about inequality that they want the state to relieve.

One of the Keynesian beliefs central to the new left economic platform is avoiding deflation and keeping steady mild inflation (ie. printing money) to keep people employed.

Who benefits from inflation? Whoever gets the money first. The financial sector. This mild inflation is printing money for the banks.

In a economic bust, what does a Keynesian party do? Stimulus (ie. print more money).  Who benefits? The financial sector.

When the government creates bonds (ie. debt) to finance further spending who benefits? The banks and financial traders who buy the bonds. It’s a license to print money.

Who benefits the most from complex government contract bidding? Large corporations (you think, Jack the small businessman with 3 employees can figure out the complex government bidding process and win them against Halliburton?)

Who benefits the most from government regulations? Large, established corporations (ie. banks).

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What?

I know, it seems weird, that large corporations benefit form regulations, but hear me out.

Large corporations are generally (Koch aside) not ideologically libertarian or capitalist, they are “rational” organizations pursuing profit.

The most damaging thing to a large, established corporations profits is radical change. Large corporations are generally very bureaucratic and can’t respond rapidly to change. If left alone, upstart companies can introduce radical changes to their industry quite rapidly and hurt the profits of large corporations (or occasionally destroy them entirely). So, the corporations go along with new regulations. Sure, their profits might decrease a small amount, but they can afford it. The small, upstart company generally can’t.

For example, let’s take access for people with disabilities. McDonald’s can easily afford the thousands of dollars to put into place a wheelchair ramp and handicap washrooms. Joe’s Diner, which makes a profits of 40k a year, won’t have such an easy time coming up with the thousands of dollars necessary for renovations.

So any financial regulations may hurt the large banks and traders some, but you know who they hurt more: smaller banks and trading companies, their competitors and potential disrupters.

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As we can see, modern left-liberal Keynesian economic ideology helps the financial sector more than almost anyone else. Those in charge of the parties know this (hence, Obama’s strong ties to Goldman Sachs), the useful idiots (ie. those anti-capitalists who still vote for these parties) follow along, because the parties know how to sound anti-capitalist (although, the banks know this is just a show) and to think otherwise would challenge their whole ideology and political allegiance.

The financial sector are also generally graduates of the (left-wing) academic system, so they mostly (more or less) agree on the basics of liberal-left social policies.

That’s why the financial sector will often vote for supposedly leftist parties and why I am not surprised that they do.