Wednesday, February 26, 2020

I just watched President Trump's press conference on the corona virus. My reaction: I’m very happy Donald Trump is our President. The corona virus appears to be a real threat.  I won't make the case here, but it seems likely to me that this is Chinese biological weapon that accidentally escaped form China's biological research institute in Wuhan.  That helps explain the unusual panic and secrecy from the Chinese leadership.  Regardless, I hope that this problem diminishes quickly and that the spread of the disease stops.

But regarding the press conference, I appreciated that Trump 1) put experts in charge, 2) deferred to them, and 3) isn’t following the advice of the wicked Rahm Emmanuel to “never let a crisis go to waste.”  Rather, Trump is working to avoid a crisis.  Having Vice President Pence coordinate efforts makes great sense.  Pence appears to be a competent manager, and there are no standard duties for the VP.  He's well-situated to move from agency to agency, so this makes sense.

I was not a Trump supporter until he was the only alternative to Hilliary, but he has greatly exceeded my expectations. He’s doing a fine job. Some of his questioners in the media seemed to be trying to trip him up with techincal questions or "gotcha" questions, but they failed.  President Trump deferred to experts or otherwise failed to bite.

That’s one thing that detractors (including the press) criticize. They want a central planner, a great leader, a man who is expert at everything…as Barack Obama pretended to be. Trump isn’t a central planner. And he doesn't try to be an expert on everything.  His opponents can hardly conceive of that, one reason they can’t fathom him. They really want a wise dictator, that’s what progressivism really is about, rule by unconstrained experts. And that’s not Trump.

You "don't necessarily need" Bernie Sanders

What good is he, after all?  So far as I can tell, his main contribution is that he's a carbon footprint.  And those ought be minimized, Sanders himself says.

Bernie Sanders lamented the possibility of consumer choice so long as any person suffers misfortune.  Bernie Sanders also laments inequality, ummm, except for his own.  Comrade Sanders earned his profits.  After all, he's a literary genius...or perhaps people simply bought his book because he's a well-known ideologue and attracts buyers' attention.

Though he's not a literary genius, the latter is perfectly legitimate.  But Comrade Sanders would deny this same right to others.  Deodorant sellers attract buyers' attention, sufficiently so that there are 23 brands, if Comrade Sanders is correct.  And there must be at least 18 brands of "sneakers."  And that's no more lamentable than the fact that there's more than one book written while "children are hungry."

But let's get to the point.  No one needs Bernie Sanders.  I can live perfectly well without him, and so can you, dear reader.  If "social need" is to be the basis for determining what exists and what doesn't, Sanders is in trouble.  He creates nothing of value.  He feeds no hungry children.  He lives a lifestyle that is well beyond the reach of the vast majority of us Americans, never mind the rest of the world.  If egalitarianism is the standard, Comrade Bernie is one of the rich who should not exist.  By his own standards, he should be eliminated.

By my standards (or "our" standards, the entire staff of Unforeseen Contingencies marches in lockstep, after all) (except for those who don't), this conclusion is not legitimate, because Sanders' principles are wrong.  Individual human beings are ends, not means.  Individuals have inherent rights, beginning with each individual's right to his/her own life.  That's the libertarian/classical liberal principle on which America was founded.  But Comrade Sanders disagrees and wants to replace this principle, and by his standards, it's hard to fathom why he should be allowed to exist at all.  He's just a carbon footprint.

He should hope he doesn't convert us.

Thursday, February 20, 2020

Bernie Sanders supporters

Thursday, February 13, 2020

The Marxism of the Contemporary Left

Our contemporary left in America and the rest of the developed world is effectively communist.  For all their claims to be proponents of the Scandinavian welfare state, the preponderance of evidence suggests otherwise.  Today's left is working for some variant of Marxism.  Proponents of liberty and free markets need to wake up and understand what we're fighting, and take this seriously.  There are still many who do not.  As an example, here's a 2016 piece by David Azerrad, formerly of the Heritage Foundation, arguing that today's left isn't really socialist, that the left understands central planning doesn't work and really just wants a big welfare state, with government regulating sectors such as health care, energy, and transportation... the sorts of things Lenin called "the commanding heights" of the economy.  In this view, today's "democratic socialists" have no interest in replacing the market, they just want Scandinavian levels of social services.  Unfortunately, that's just not true.

Let's begin with a couple of high profile, popular leftist celebrities, Alexandra Ocasio Cortez and Greta Thunberg.  Ocasio Cortez has publicly stated (during a PBS interview) that capitalism is a passing phase, it "will not always exist in the world." Her Green New Deal shows she means that.  Similarly, according to Greta Thunberg "the climate crisis is not just about the environment. It is a crisis of human rights, of justice, and of political will. Colonial, racist, and patriarchal systems of oppression have created and fueled it. We need to dismantle them all."  If you don't understand they are talking about dismantling capitalism and replacing it with socialism (we know, dear UC readers, you do understand, this is merely a rhetorical flourish), here's Saikat Chakrabarti, Ocasio Cortez' former chief of staff and handler, explaining that the Green New Deal is first of all a plan to completely change the entire economy.  "The interesting thing about the Green New Deal, is it wasn’t originally a climate thing at all.  Do you guys think of it as a climate thing?” Because we really think of it as a how-do-you-change-the-entire-economy thing".  Cooperative public ownership, redistribution to eliminate inequality, and "social justice" are the objectives.

Consider, next, the Democratic Socialists of America.  This organization was founded by Trotskyite Michael Harrington, a man who spent his entire life as a communist or fellow traveler.  (Marxists argue among themselves who was really a Marxist; these doctrinal quibbles are not important for our purposes.)  The DSA promotes the notion that "to achieve a more just society, many structures of our government and economy must be radically transformed through greater economic and social democracy..."  DSA also tells us "Social ownership could take many forms, such as worker-owned cooperatives or publicly owned enterprises managed by workers and consumer representatives. Democratic socialists favor as much decentralization as possible. While the large concentrations of capital in industries such as energy and steel may necessitate some form of state ownership, many consumer-goods industries might be best run as cooperatives."  In other words, they really do intend to take the "commanding heights."

Or consider this from the DSA: "Socialism doesn't only mean nationalization of key industries. There will be many forms of socialist ownership: public ownership at many different levels from national to state to municipalities, private ownership of small businesses, joint ownership of cooperatives, and other mixed economy forms that best fit production and social needs. And of course every individual will privately own his or her personal possessions and property."

Oops, "typo."  That last is from the Party Program of CPUSA (Communist Party of the United States of America).  "Socialism would bring social ownership to the commanding heights of the economythe major industrial firms, the transnational corporations, banks and other financial institutions, the energy industry, much of the national distribution system, and the health care systemand run them as public utilities, with publicly elected boards, responsible to and for the public good, and for long-term economic and environmental sustainability. Public programs for free health care, free education through the college level, combating illiteracy, ending malnutrition, and guaranteeing jobs would be built." (Errors, including spacing, sic).

CPUSA's program is indistinguishable from that of DSA, and it's what the rockstars of the left have called for publicly (Comrade Bernie included).  It's even what Azerrad describes, although he seems not to understand that it's socialism.  It's also the platform of Justice Democrats.

This isn't about building a bigger "safety net" or increasing "entitlements."  It's about dismantling private ownership of the means of production and the market system, and substituting "democratic" control. This is the stuff Marx and Engels promoted. Correspondingly, today's leftists have no commitment at all to protecting the rights of those of us who disagree, hence their seething hatred of opponents, whom they indiscriminately label Nazis and racists.  Don't doubt they are capable of purging those who oppose them; their system requires it.  They have a vision for how the entire society is to be constructed.  It requires conformity.

It's vitally important that we recognize that today's left really is socialist, and stop them.  They must never rule.

Tuesday, February 04, 2020

State of the Union 2020: The Best is Yet to Come

It is such an unaccustomed pleasure to be able to watch a State of the Union address and actually enjoy it.  But it has happened again!  The President did a masterful job.  He faced a room that included enemies who have tried to destroy him by underhanded methods.  He was positive, upbeat, and quite willing to confront them without being combative.  Here are a few thoughts:

There was much more.  I appreciated the Tuskegee airman and his great grandson, the well-deserved Medal of Freedom for Rush Limbaugh, and the other guests who were introduced.  They were well-chosen and belonged there.

Mostly I love the message that America's culture is freedom, not socialism, and for America, the best is yet to come. 

IOWA Democrat Caucus -- living up to the name!

IOWA: Idiots Out Wandering Around.  We at Unforeseen Contingencies have never thought much of the Iowa party caucuses, and have grumpily voiced our displeasure, e.g. here, here, and here.   The Iowa caucuses are weird affairs in which Iowans assemble by party in high school gymnasiums and move around in sort of musical chairs fashion, going from one candidate group to another, keeping tally of how many are in each group.  And when they eventually tire of this, they award convention delegates to presidential candidates according to arcane rules that include coin tosses.  No one outside of Iowa has any idea of what is happening or why Iowa, of all places, should be the kickoff for the selection of party nominees.  But Iowans have always seemed inordinately proud of their caucuses... until now.  The Iowa Democrat Party has managed to make an utter shambles of their caucuses (the Republican ones seemed to go quite smoothly) and has very possibly ended the caucuses for good.  Better yet, they've sown tremendous discord in the party.

The Iowa caucuses are a travesty, utterly ridiculous and non-serious.  I served as an election judge in Montana.  We were carefully trained to keep things honest and fair, required to take an oath to uphold the Constitution and the law, and, when we supervised voting in the primary, we maintained security with multiple checks and we oversaw each other.  It was a careful process.  I've voted in primaries here in Michigan and it's the same.  It's serious business.

In Iowa, they move around from chair to chair, someone scrawls a count on a legal pad, if they decide to call it a tie someone flips a coin... That all sounds ridiculous, but then the Democrat plan was to send results in by means of a proprietary cell phone app.  And if that didn't work, there was a backup plan to call a hotline with results.  You're kidding.  Unbelievable. Read my story about Montana and then compare to this Iowa joke.

As it turned out, neither the app nor the hotline worked.  My favorite moment in the debacle came when CNN's Wolf Blitzer was interviewing a frustrated caucus leader who had been on hotline hold for an hour.  In the midst of the interview, Democrat HQ suddenly answered his call...and promptly hung up before he could respond.  What a beautiful thing to broadcast nationwide.  Too bad no one watches CNN.  Heh!

At present (8:03 PM EST, 4 Feb.) it appears Pete Buttgig and Comrade Sanders are effectively tied.  Pocahontas Warren is third, frontrunner Joe Biden is in fourth, and Rosa Klebb is in fifth.  Rumors abound that Hilliary Clinton and Mayor Pete helped finance the app that failed.  Sanders and Biden appear to be crying foul; they were already upset over the obvious sabotage of their campaigns by the DNC's decision to change the rules and allow Mini Mike Bloomberg to enter the next debate (after ejecting Cory Booker, Tulsi Gabbard, Deval Patrick, et al. for insufficient popular support!)

Bernie Sanders and his supporters were clearly screwed over in 2016.  It's happening again.  Here's Michael Moore at a rally for comrade Bernie, absolutely livid at what the DNC is doing.  Of course, Comrade Sanders isn't even a member of the Democrat Party, so it's understandable that this is happening.  But this promises to make the 2020 Democrat campaign quite a show!

Sunday, February 02, 2020

A Good Start to the Year! Brexit, Trump...

Happy Candlemas…or Groundhog Day, or Superbowl Sunday, or perhaps Dachstag.  I like to think of it as two days after Brexit and Trump once again defeating our enemies.

Brexit: Three cheers for Great Britain and Northern Ireland!  They’ve escaped the shackles of the anti-democratic elitist authoritarians of the E.U.  The United Kingdom is once again a sovereign nation.  Welcome back!

Boris Johnson promises not to play tough in trade negotiations with the E.U. thugs.  And he’s now free to pursue free trade with the United States and other non-E.U. countries.  The U.K.’s socialists – Labor and the Lib-Dems – have been routed.  There remains much to do and many fights ahead, but what a great advance and what a great moment in history!  The vote of 2016 is finally accepted, and the anti-democratic forces defeated.

Nina Bookout of Victory Girls has a particularly nice post on all this.  It includes two videos that are certainly worth your time.  The first one, about 15 minutes long, shows a debate in the European Parliament.  The anti-Brexit members show utter contempt for citizens and their votes, and act like the elitist authoritarians they are.  Nigel Farage and his troops are not cowed and let the Eurocrats have it.  It’s particularly satisfying to watch, because the Lib-Dem and Labor reps, as well as some weirdos from the Continent, prattle that if the unenlightened people had only understood the issues they’d have voted differently.  In fact, a new election is called for.  Well, they got the new election they wanted... and were utterly crushed.  Bravo!

The second video is Nigel Farage giving U.K.’s Exit Speech.  It is beautiful.  He sums up everything right about commercial trade and everything wrong with E.U.  And then, he and his companions pull out their Union Jacks.  It turns out it’s forbidden to fly a national flag in the European Parliament, and they are ordered to put them away.  Otherwise they’ll have to leave.  They wave goodbye with their flags.  Hahahahaha!  The European Union, an ill-begotten political project designed to create safe sinecures for French bureaucrats and Prussian bankers, just lost its most important member.  May the others follow soon.

Trump: Meanwhile, here in the States, again, the vote of 2016 is preserved!  The Congressional Democrats have failed to reverse the election of 2016.  By a vote of 51-49, the Senate agreed to not call further “witnesses.”  Adam Schiff and the other Democrat House members claimed to have incontrovertible evidence of President Trump conspiring with the Russians and all sorts of other nefarious things.  They presented absolutely none in the House proceedings, and none in the Senate.  Instead, they suddenly demanded new “witnesses.” I put quotation marks around “witness” because a witness is someone who has witnessed something.  The Dem impeachment managers had no "something" and were scrambling to find, or invent, new offenses.  What Schiff, Nadler, et al. wanted was a stream of people to cast aspersions.  Happily, they failed.

Pierre Delecto, scoundrel and traitor par excellence to America, managed to vote with the Democrats, as did the other Massachusetts RINO, Susan Collins.  But to no avail; the good guys won.

No doubt the Dems will pull out even more last minute “witnesses” with scandalous tales about President Trump.  They already have some crazy lady with a 30-year-old unwashed dress that supposedly proves Trump a notorious rapist.  (Unclear whether her name really is Christine Blaisy Ford as rumored.) 

The entire affair is horrible; it’s an attempted coup by political means.  It's good that it was defeated.  But the Senate proceedings did have a few bright moments.  One was Chief Justice John Roberts refusing to read a question from Senator Rand Paul, because it included the name Eric Ciaramella, the so-called “whistleblower.”  The Chief Justice is there to preside, not censor.  John Roberts expose himself as a swamp creature (again).  What’s particularly amusing is that everyone who cares knows that which Justice Roberts censored.  And it is obvious that Ciaramella conspired with House Democrats in advance of any "whistleblowing."

Also amusing was when Jerry the Hutt Nadler managed to accuse all the Republicans in the Senate of engaging in a coverup.  Even better, Pocahontas Warren managed to call John Roberts, the U.S. Supreme Court, and the U.S. Constitution illegitimate.

Icing on the cake was when the House managers were asked to sum up, and Nadler sprang to the lectern with Schiff in pursuit him trying to shut him up.  Truly a clown show!  The clowns lost.

The year is young.  There’s a wild ride ahead.  But if early returns are any indication, the good guys will be winning. 

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?