San Diego — Well out here we’ve finally got the “occupiers” in downtown San Diego. To be honest i am surprised it all did not start here since most of the fads and vacuous trends seem to eminate from here on the left coast. In some ways it is amusing, as if today’s want-to-be hippies finally had it with not having a good cause like we had in the ’60s and so found it necessary to protest something, even if it was against the very bread and butter that helped create and sustain the place and society that lets them protest.
Of course people are frustrated. The government, that political village, that they were led to believe was the solution to all our woes, has failed utterly to solve a problem that is negatively effecting them. Nobody tried to tell them that even though the problem stems to a very large degree from government actions, the government cannot solve it by affirmative action only by allowing the system to work properly and that by having government get out of the business of business.
In my day we were proitesting tangibles even if we were wrong about them. Today they are protest in facor of abstractions, the stock in trade of progressive speech. “Fairness,” “justice,” etc. are the talking points of the protesters even though they have no solid clues as to specifics of the problem or of a solution. THey want “change” but we just had change and it took us fromt he frying pan into the fire. I do not wish to go from the fire into the conflagration.
Freedom as we have come to think of it in America flows from one economic system and one only — capitalism. To the extent that, since Wilson and then FDR we have added socialistic elements to our government we have done so at the cost of Freedom. And under all socialist regimes the one freedome lost most emphatically is the freedom to dissent. Talk about wanting to cut off your nose to spite your face.
Most cannot answer what they wish to replace capitalism with and those who quickly shout out socialism or even communism clearly have no clue what the personal price in liberty is to accomplish that. Some of the more fascinating idiots, like Roseann Barr (who is running for president in case you missed it) wants a blend of capitalism and socialism. But the two are mutually exclusive and create a true zero sum game for the system. They both entail two common but opposing elements: Individual Freedom from the state and Individual Protection by the state. To the extent you get one you lose the other.
The most laughable attendees and pretend participants are the rich celebrities such as Michael Moore, the left’s antidote for civilization, Alex Baldwin, Hollywood pitchman whose newly added poundage makes him the perfect person to play Al Gore who himself once played a politician, Susan Sarandon whose brains apparently went into a different portion of her anatomy instead of the normal place, Union shills whose pensions and slush funds make money because they are housed in the very institutions they are pretending now to hate, and of course such paragons of political brilliance as Nancy Pelosi who too owes her status to that evil element… money.
I do sympathize a little with the protesters. Back in the ’60s, at least what I remember of it, we took to the streets as well against all manner of what we were just sure was evil incarnate. Some never grew out of it, like Bill Ayers the domestic terrorist of the Weather Underground who simply wanted to overthrow the government and is lucky he was not taken seriously or his treason trial and execution would have happened years ago. But most of us grew up and if, like me, we actually got a job and then owned our own business for more than a few minutes began to realize just how ignorant we were of the real world and how stupid we had been in what we thought were solutions to the problems we settled on.
Ah, if only I knew now what I thought I knew back then! THe problem is that with the passage of time and life-experience I realize what i thought i kneww back then was mostly factually in error. We mercifully did not have the 24 hr news cycle and overtly politicized reportage to make us sound more relevant than we really were. But today those things are in play.
If sincerety bred brilliance and insight and that insight generated change then we should have done great things back then. But we had to wait to mature, to grow and learn and realize that ideals divorced from reality rarely work and are often more dangerous due to unintended and totally unforeseen consequences of a usually negative sort. Let me provide a quote by Robert Ringer, financial guru and author, who put this about as succintly as I have ever seen it.
“Those who dwell on the unfairness of life are stuck in a self-delusive Woodstock world, a world far removed from reality. Worse, they rarely, if ever, are successful in their efforts to bring about major change, which almost always results in anger and further retreat into the unreal world they harbor in the deep recesses of their gray matter.
(By the way, to help establish my “bona fides” to speak here, I and my ex-wife were AT the original Woodstock.[DK]. OK, back to Mr. Ringer’s comments…)
“The reason it’s virtually impossible to bring about major change (short of violent revolution) is that the unfairness of life stems mostly from the thoughts and actions of human beings, a species that is supremely flawed. To the chagrin of the progressive, human beings are not programmed to act altruistically, yet altruism is at the heart of his agenda.
“In fairness, I think many progressives sincerely want to help those whom they believe to be in need. Which would be fine, except for the fact that they believe the best way to achieve their noble goals is to violate the rights of others whom they believe to be too well off. Thus, their solutions almost always involve the use of force, which in turn results in more harm than good.
“Having said this, I should point out that while Biden is partially right when he says the system isn’t fair, in a more general sense he’s also wrong. Capitalism, like everything else in our world, is not perfect, but it is by far the fairest (and most moral) economic system known to man. Not fair, but fairest. Again, there is no perfection in life.
“To be sure, there are dishonest capitalists, just as there are dishonest priests, journalists, doctors, and plumbers, but that doesn’t make the system itself dishonest or unfair. The system works when people do not stifle it by defrauding others or getting the government to use force to help them gain an advantage in the marketplace.”
Of course the world is full of both honest and dishonest people in all walks of life. There are dishonest car salesmen, dishonest teachers, dishonest priests, dishonest reporters, and on and on. But we don’t attack any of those institutions simply because some of their members are dishonest. So, yes, there are greedy scurrilous capitalists. But of all the economic systems out there the capitalistic system is the most honest in openly accepting the human species acquisitive, territorial. self-actualized nature. Capitalism, when it is allowed to and is not skewed by government edicts that effect player disproportionately, allows people, to exploit their own skills and willingness to expend effort in their own behalf.
Perhaps if this universe provided some inexhaustible source of resources that were simply there for the taking, then creating a governmental oversight function to apportion that fairly or as needed would make sense. But such a resouce does not exist. The resource that does exists comes only from the work and productivity of those willing to create it. and personally, I do not believe those who will not join that productive class have any right whatsoever to demand that they somehow “owe” it to the entitled parasites to give them a penny of what they have earned.
What made this country powerful was thje freedome to fail and pay the price. It was marvelously motivating. And when that freedom is blocked by the government and everyone is protected at the cost of taking from productive to give to non productive elements that motivation for success erodes with it. We have only to look at the incredible example of the Soviet Union or Cuba to see how that social fairness will inevitably play out.
Recently Joe Biden, another paragon of philosophical wisdom, told an interviewer that the reason for the occupiers and their protest was that, “…the bargain has been breached with the American people.”
What bargain was that exactly? When was there passed some sort of “social compact” that has been agreed upon by everyone in our society. I never heard of it; it does not exist in the Constitution; it is a complete fabrication as a starting point upon which to then argue warm and fuzzy abstractions designed to resonate with the self-entitled victims of society.
The only economic bargains or agreements I have ever experienced was when i interfaced with a potential client. I offered my services for a price they could accept or reject. Sometimes they approached me with the offer of a gig at terms I could accept or reject. My friends who work for a salary were all basically offered agreements by their employers for terms they were free to accept or reject. Those were not bargains with the society at large or government but between individuals and a companby or other individuals. And they were between the source of the money and the intended receiver of that money.
The government has no money and does nothing to earn money except as it exacts tribute in the form of taxes from the people. It has no position from which to bargain except with other people’s money derived from other people’s productivity.
Explain to me the fairness in that?