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Thread: Mindless Insanity Rears Its Ugly Head Once Again

  1. #1

    Mindless Insanity Rears Its Ugly Head Once Again

    Mindless Insanity Rears Its Ugly Head Once Again as All Those Picking a Side Have Already Lost
    By Gary D. Barnett

    November 7, 2020

    “On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.”

    H.L. Mencken, The Baltimore Sun, July 26, 1920.


    The largest number of Americans in history just did the same thing over again for the 59th time, all expecting a different outcome. The state chosen clowns were sent in to take their place on a preset ballot, and half the people took one side and the other half took the opposite side. Insanity is forever evident, but every four years, that insanity is placed on a pedestal for all to see, and that spectacle is once again proven to be a supreme example of the stupidity of man. It is very difficult to imagine that such a repetitive act so absurd as a presidential election of a controlled tyrant could stir the thoughtless emotion that it does, knowing that in four years these same drones will once again lose their collective minds and play the same game over again.

    If Trump wins, we are all doomed! If Biden wins we are all doomed! This is the entirety of the thinking that is taking center stage today. The bottom line is that both sides of this asinine argument are exactly correct, which leaves anyone with even a modicum of intelligence scratching his head to the point of causing blood loss.

    It seems obvious that none from the most ignorant to the most ‘educated’ among us are exempt from a temporary, or not so temporary, loss of intellect when it comes time for them to choose their already chosen master. Democrats, Republicans, liberals, conservatives, libertarians and independents all think it mandatory this time around to once again participate in this circus in order to fix the ills of a population that today have to be told to not drink the contents of their car’s battery because it may be harmful to their health. What in the world has happened to individual sanity and responsibility? What has happened to cause division to be so rampant as to be the controlling impetus of all human thought? And why does the near entirety of this population not see that they have been indoctrinated and guided, tricked into voluntarily destroying their own lives, so that the ruling class has an easy time using the people’s cognitive dissonance to bring about their own slavery? Every election is the epitome of this scheme.

    While all this voting absurdity is consuming the minds of brain-dead citizens, the top headlines behind the selection process are those that state that the U.S. Covid-19 peak is here, with the most daily cases, and that the killer vaccine rollout will feature app tracking of vulnerable groups. These are very serious matters, but until the current consuming craziness is finished, other important corruption will be ignored, allowing for the advancement of more tyranny behind the cloak of election politics. It seems the general public can only concentrate on one thing at a time, because the capability to think is seemingly lost, while individual intellect has been damaged beyond repair.

    After the last election fiasco in 2016, the Democrats were crushed, and became completely insane with hate. The Republicans were ecstatic, as they were confident that their guy Trump would save us all, and so they thought to themselves that they had won! Four years later, government spending at levels never considered in history has been the result. U.S. wars continued around the world, threats of war were constant, brutalizing people around the globe continued; all while the economy was being purposely destroyed and blamed on a scam. Protectionism became rampant, causing mass suffering of innocents, and a national emergency was declared, leaving open the door for all governors to become tyrannical cretins on a mission from hell. Businesses were closed nationwide, lockdowns were enforced, unemployment skyrocketed, travel ceased, deadly mask wearing and social distancing became normal, and deployment of national troops with threats to use the military to distribute killer vaccines was set in place. Stock markets were constantly manipulated, while the Federal Reserve printed many trillions of dollars to enrich the ‘elites,’ allowing for more control over the populace. This is only a small sampling of all the totalitarian measures that happened under a Trump presidency. But Republicans forgot all that as they clamored for more and more of this type of ‘leadership,’ promoting another four years so that all of us could be saved from the evil Democrats.

    Now, if the Biden camp instead of the Trump camp wins the election manipulation contest, the Democrats will think and say the exact same things as Republicans did four years ago. The stage would be set for more tyranny at the hands of politicians, but this time, the left hand of the political partnership called the party system would be in control. The fake pandemic would continue, the spending would expand, wars and brutality would remain in place, and socialistic legislation would go forward with similar goals that existed over the past four years. More business closings will be imminent, while continued destruction of the economy will occur. Unemployment, mandated behavior, lockdowns, travel bans, masks, and deadly vaccine promotion will not only continue but be more enforced. Another national emergency declaration will be forthcoming, and troops will be forever on alert to squelch any resistance by the thinking few. Terror in the streets will continue and become commonplace, as the state will allow this behavior, no different than has taken place over this past year while the other side was in charge.

    This common dictatorial pattern carried out by the ruling oligarchy, an oligarchy made up of the banking and corporate systems, the tax exempt foundations, the claimed ruling elite individuals, and both sides of the political class, regardless of which party claims power, will not cease, but will only get worse. There is no difference in these evil monsters that desire to rule over the world and all its inhabitants. There is no difference in the Republican and Democrat Party. There is no difference in the left and the right except at the extreme margin, so all on both sides continually lose without even understanding that they have lost. The blame is always placed on the other side, just as has been purposely instilled in the mindless robots called American citizens since the two-party system was designed. The concentration of power never changes, and the parties only change in that they take turns pretending to be for their side, and the people fall for this deception every time, as they wallow in divisiveness and ignorance.

    Understand that this planned deception was intentionally created, and that as long as infighting continues among us, they win and we lose. Until the false paradigm of Democrat versus Republican is understood for what it really is, which is a conspiracy of self-created division due to indoctrinatory manipulation, we will all suffer under a system of power and control where the few control the many.

    We either become individuals working together for the advancement of freedom, which benefits all, or we remain slaves to the state apparatus that is now in the process of gaining total control over society. It is okay to think differently, it is okay to act differently, but it is always detrimental to hate one another based on the idea that others have to believe and act as you do. Any attempt to force compliance against the will of another leads only to divisiveness, and that is why we are all being deliberately exploited today by the very political system supported by the majority.

    Secession is a better option.

    “Once one concedes that a single world government is not necessary, then where does one logically stop at the permissibility of separate states? If Canada and the United States can be separate nations without being denounced as in a state of impermissible ‘anarchy’, why may not the South secede from the United States? New York State from the Union? New York City from the state? Why may not Manhattan secede? Each neighbourhood? Each block? Each house? Each person?”

    Link:https://www.lewrockwell.com/2020/11/...-already-lost/
    Last edited by Ender; 11-07-2020 at 10:27 AM.
    There is no spoon.



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  3. #2
    Political theater is for the idiot who wants to feel smarter than the idiots around them. It’s WWE for intellectual teenagers wanting to mentally masturbate their way to moral superiority over their brother.

    Government IS the monopoly on force and violence. Voting isn’t just consent to this force and violence, it’s begging for it. It’s asking for your side to inflict it’s will on not just the other side, but those who never consented. Consider that voting itself is force and violence upon others, as all laws your (we didn’t consent) politicians create are enforced at the barrel of a gun. We can all be killed by a cop for jaywalking no matter how hard you participate in the sacred right of sticking it to The Others.

    I would gladly participate in a system of government that respects individual liberty and didn’t steal my labor by force. Until then it all can $#@! all. Yes, I understand that they are going to do what they do. It’s the voters who don’t understand that. It says right there that we have the right to alter or abolish. Voting ain’t that. It’s the polar opposite.

    Crying over Orange Man or Plugs won’t bring you more liberty. Setting brush fires of liberty in the minds of others is much more impactful and better for the soul. Get out of the moral depravity of partisan politics.

    The emperor has no clothes. Open your eyes and laugh at him with us. For a lot of us liberty is a way of living, not a political ideology to be manipulated by carnival barkers and snake oil salesmen.

    Keep setting those fires, Ender.

  4. #3
    WTH, I just tried to send this thread to a friend on their FB page and was greeted with this:
    You can't post this
    This URL goes against our Community Standards on spam:
    ronpaulforums.com
    Trying to do an end round I used the Rockwell link and was able to get it posted.
    Nice find Ender, I'd rep you for it but I have to spread some around first.

  5. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by mt4rp View Post
    WTH, I just tried to send this thread to a friend on their FB page and was greeted with this:
    You can't post this
    This URL goes against our Community Standards on spam:
    ronpaulforums.com
    Trying to do an end round I used the Rockwell link and was able to get it posted.
    Nice find Ender, I'd rep you for it but I have to spread some around first.
    Fedbook would not let me share for 3-4 days. I'm guessing something I shared from GW Pundit.

  6. #5
    What has happened to cause division to be so rampant as to be the controlling impetus of all human thought?
    I've answered this a hundred times or more.

    I could, with equal frustration, ask: "What has caused blindness to approaching danger to become so rampant as to render a society self suicidal?"

    Yet another self righteous screed from an unknown internet pundit telling me how stupid I am for choosing a side in what I see as a life or death struggle is hardly helping.
    We must picture Hell as a state where everyone is perpetually concerned about his own dignity and advancement, where everyone has a grievance, and where everyone lives the deadly serious passions of envy, self-importance, and resentment. - C. S. Lewis

  7. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by mt4rp View Post
    WTH, I just tried to send this thread to a friend on their FB page and was greeted with this:
    You can't post this
    This URL goes against our Community Standards on spam:
    ronpaulforums.com
    Trying to do an end round I used the Rockwell link and was able to get it posted.
    Nice find Ender, I'd rep you for it but I have to spread some around first.

    Covered.

    Thanks for adding reputation to this user. May you be lucky enough to receive the same Reputation back in turn.
    “Give a man a plane ticket, he flies for a short period of his life. Throw a man out of a plane, he flies for the rest of his life.”

  8. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Ender View Post
    Secession is a better option.

    “Once one concedes that a single world government is not necessary, then where does one logically stop at the permissibility of separate states? If Canada and the United States can be separate nations without being denounced as in a state of impermissible ‘anarchy’, why may not the South secede from the United States? New York State from the Union? New York City from the state? Why may not Manhattan secede? Each neighbourhood? Each block? Each house? Each person?”
    Quote Originally Posted by Anti Federalist View Post
    I've answered this a hundred times or more.

    I could, with equal frustration, ask: "What has caused blindness to approaching danger to become so rampant as to render a society self suicidal?"

    Yet another self righteous screed from an unknown internet pundit telling me how stupid I am for choosing a side in what I see as a life or death struggle is hardly helping.
    LOL. At the end of the "self righteous screed" he said what you have said over and over again. "Secession is the better option." But collectivist secession is doomed to failure. The state isn't going to let you "vote" yourself a new territory. And trying to carve out a new territory with a group of your buddies was first tried by Mr. Shay and put down by a freaking militia. (And we all know how the civil war turned out. I wonder why I wasn't about Shay's rebellion in U.S. History class? They taught me about the ill fated "Whiskey Rebellion." I guess they thought I'd have less sympathy for someone making the devils brew than I would a revolutionary war vet who got stiffed on his pay but still had to pay his taxes and debts.)

    But there's another option. So brilliant I am surprised it didn't sink in. And I finally figured it out in the "Join or die" thread. Just....don't comply. Just seriously don't comply. The final weapon that those who want to fight against the stealing of the 2020 election is the primary weapon of the agorist. Don't comply. If you live in an area where compliance will be mandated, move to an area where it won't be and....don't comply. Convince other people not to comply as well. Wasn't that the who point of the Atlas Shrugged novel? (I have not read the novel nor have I watched the movie.) The "Who is Ron Paul" meme was based on "Who is John Galt" and everyone wanted to get to "Galt's Gulch." He didn't fight a war to gain the territory. He didn't win some political contest where he got congress and a state legislature to "vote" him a territory. He just bought it and invited others.

    The same thing is even easier to do at the cyber level. Facebook, YouTube and Twitter are only near monopolies because we allow them to be! I have pointed this out to @JoshLowry and @Brian4Liberty and posted multiple threads about the fact that it makes no freaking sense to complain about censorship on Twitter and YouTube, meanwhile this forum only allows you to embed Twitter and YouTube. We're greasing the skids of the very tyranny we oppose. There is very little discussion on building the social and economic platforms that could be used to get around the technocrats and instead we keep looking to the same government we don't trust to fix the problems. People don't like the power of Amazon? Jeff Bezos only has the power that people give him. At the start of the pandemic when Dr. Faucistein said you shouldn't wear masks and you couldn't find them in stores, I found boxes of 50 being sold on Craigslist. I didn't realize it but I was practicing agorism. I made the exchanges in cash with a "supplier" in the back woods of Tennessee several hours away from any major city. I didn't know where he got his supply and I didn't ask. Later I ordered straight from China at a time people said you couldn't do that. "Oh you're doing business with the Chicoms?" Yes. When others buy from Walmart or Amazon they are typically buying from someone who bought from the Chicoms. Eventually I bought a sewing machine. By the time I really got the mask making down.....they started selling masks in stores again. (I started to by a 3D printer instead and I should have. I would have had more uses for that. Anybody want to buy a sewing machine?) Anyway, my point is, I got around the red tape and did what Fauci said don't do. Screw him! The other point is, why don't we have our own Amazon? It's because we A) haven't built it (it's just software) and B) it's hard to get people to change habits. I took a while to personally get out of the habit of always using Google for web searches. Yeah there are liberty friendly / non censoring alternatives to Facebook and Twitter and YouTube but you have to get a critical mass of people willing to USE it.

    Now imagine what would have happened in 2008 if we had realized the enormous power we had with respect to the internet and did something OTHER than just spam online polls and raise money for an ill fated presidential race! We could have built the libertarian alternative to Twitter. Trump has the power still, though it's waning, to lead a "Twixit." Maybe he will. (I doubt it.) But why wait on him?

    Anyhow, the way you feel towards the "self righteous screeds" of "quit wasting your time and do something productive" posts, others feel towards the "self righteous screeds" of "it you don't fall in line behind MAGA it's all over" posts. And this is from someone who grudgingly gave into "MAGA madness" in the last months of the campaign. If the election was stolen then there's nothing to do but wait and see if the army of Guiliani zombie lawyers fueled by the Lindsey Graham penance money can get that overturned. And then all hell will break loose. Either way there are far more productive things to do with our time, talent and treasure.
    9/11 Thermate experiments

    Winston Churchhill on why the U.S. should have stayed OUT of World War I

    "I am so %^&*^ sick of this cult of Ron Paul. The Paulites. What is with these %^&*^ people? Why are there so many of them?" YouTube rant by "TheAmazingAtheist"

    "We as a country have lost faith and confidence in freedom." -- Ron Paul

    "It can be a challenge to follow the pronouncements of President Trump, as he often seems to change his position on any number of items from week to week, or from day to day, or even from minute to minute." -- Ron Paul
    Quote Originally Posted by Brian4Liberty View Post
    The road to hell is paved with good intentions. No need to make it a superhighway.
    Quote Originally Posted by osan View Post
    The only way I see Trump as likely to affect any real change would be through martial law, and that has zero chances of success without strong buy-in by the JCS at the very minimum.

  9. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by mt4rp View Post
    WTH, I just tried to send this thread to a friend on their FB page and was greeted with this:
    You can't post this
    This URL goes against our Community Standards on spam:
    ronpaulforums.com
    Trying to do an end round I used the Rockwell link and was able to get it posted.
    Nice find Ender, I'd rep you for it but I have to spread some around first.
    Quote Originally Posted by olehounddog View Post
    Fedbook would not let me share for 3-4 days. I'm guessing something I shared from GW Pundit.
    Facebook stopped me from direct messaging a C-Span clip that shows Dr. Fauci is a Jesuit agent. We give those bastards too much power.
    9/11 Thermate experiments

    Winston Churchhill on why the U.S. should have stayed OUT of World War I

    "I am so %^&*^ sick of this cult of Ron Paul. The Paulites. What is with these %^&*^ people? Why are there so many of them?" YouTube rant by "TheAmazingAtheist"

    "We as a country have lost faith and confidence in freedom." -- Ron Paul

    "It can be a challenge to follow the pronouncements of President Trump, as he often seems to change his position on any number of items from week to week, or from day to day, or even from minute to minute." -- Ron Paul
    Quote Originally Posted by Brian4Liberty View Post
    The road to hell is paved with good intentions. No need to make it a superhighway.
    Quote Originally Posted by osan View Post
    The only way I see Trump as likely to affect any real change would be through martial law, and that has zero chances of success without strong buy-in by the JCS at the very minimum.



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  11. #9
    . There is no difference in the Republican and Democrat Party. There is no difference in the left and the right except at the extreme margin, so all on both sides continually lose without even understanding that they have lost.
    Jimmy Carter put price controls and windfall profits taxes on oil companies and ended up with gas lines. Jimmy Carter didn't think inflation was a big deal until Reagan forced the issue near the end of his term. Jimmy Carter cut off all communication with the Soviets and escalated tensions with the Soviet Union.

    Ronald Reagan did the opposite of those things and ended inflation, shortages, and the Cold War. The foundation he laid led to 20 years of peace and prosperity. He put Antonin Scalia on the courts and not Ruth Bader Ginsburg. There is a big difference in the parties.

  12. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Krugminator2 View Post
    Jimmy Carter put price controls and windfall profits taxes on oil companies and ended up with gas lines. Jimmy Carter didn't think inflation was a big deal until Reagan forced the issue near the end of his term. Jimmy Carter cut off all communication with the Soviets and escalated tensions with the Soviet Union.

    Ronald Reagan did the opposite of those things and ended inflation, shortages, and the Cold War. The foundation he laid led to 20 years of peace and prosperity. He put Antonin Scalia on the courts and not Ruth Bader Ginsburg. There is a big difference in the parties.
    Uh, NO.

    The Reagan Record
    By Laurence M. Vance

    February 27, 2018

    (Oakland: Independent Institute, 2017), xi + 370 pgs, hardcover.

    Republicans claim to be the party of the Constitution. They have since the early 20th century cultivated the image that they and their presidents are in favor of limited government while the Democrats and their presidents are in favor of big government.

    Ivan Eland, senior fellow and director of the Center on Peace & Liberty at the Independent Institute, in his new book Eleven Presidents: Promises vs. Results in Achieving Limited Government, shows, conclusively, that this is not the case.

    Eland concludes that “Republican presidents in the last hundred years have often failed to limit government.” Only three Republican presidents — Harding, Coolidge, and Eisenhower — “had much of a record of doing so.” And surprisingly, the Democrats Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton “actually have not received enough credit for their efforts to limit government.” Eland maintains that Reagan, whose “championing of limited government was mostly rhetorical,” converted the Republican Party “into a more statist political organization.”

    In my review of Eleven Presidents (“Hey There, Big Spender,” New American, Feb. 5, 2018), I wrote this about the chapter on Reagan:

    The longest chapter in the book (double or triple the length of every other chapter but the one on George W. Bush) is the chapter on Reagan. And rightly so, since he has been beatified by conservatives for much too long. Reagan was “the king of ‘small government’ hot air.” The chapter title says it all: “Busting the Myths.” This chapter is certainly the most important one in the book, and by itself is worth the price of the book.

    I wrote just this because I knew it would take a whole article to cover what Eland writes about Reagan.

    This is that article.

    The “mythology that Ronald Reagan won the Cold War and was a small government conservative has nothing to do with his policy record while president and everything to do with his legacy being used as a weapon by conservatives against a subsequent Democratic president.” In fact, just as Carter “had some policies that were more conservative than Reagan,” so Clinton “turned out to be more conservative on some issues than the Gipper.” Subsequent to Reagan leaving office, conservatives “made an arduous effort to sanitize Reagan’s record.”

    The Reagan myths that Eland destroys are found under four heads:

    Winning the Cold War
    Image and interventionism
    The administration’s scandals were not severe
    A smaller federal government?

    Reagan gets too much credit for winning the Cold War. The fall of the Berlin Wall and the collapse of the Soviet Union did not occur until the end of 1989 and 1991—when George H. W. Bush was president. The Soviet economy “had already started to decline during the late 1960s, years before Reagan took office.” It was Gorbachev who decided “to give up supporting East European Communist dictatorships with the Soviet Red Army, thus ending the forty-plus-year-old Cold War.

    Iran-Contra “was a more severe breach constitutionally than Watergate.” The Reagan administration “violated a criminal law and its own international arms embargo by selling heavy weapons at elevated prices to a terrorist-sponsoring nation, Iran, to attempt to ransom hostages held in Lebanon by the Iranian-backed Hezbollah group.” The proceeds were then used to fund the Nicaraguan Contras in their attempt to overthrow the Sandinista government.

    Reagan pioneered “the ramp-up of US military intervention from the more restrained immediate post-Vietnam War era” of Ford and Carter. He got involved on both sides of the Iran-Iraq War. Reagan created future foreign policy problems by “helping to create bin Laden’s al Qaeda and the Taliban.” He “created the tools used for a future ramp-up of US military intervention in the region.” Reagan’s image of using direct military intervention sparingly was a lie. He made three major direct military interventions that were “unprovoked, aggressive, unnecessary, and against small, feeble countries.”

    In spite of Reagan’s rhetoric, he did not believe in a smaller federal government. According to Eland:

    Over the Reagan years, despite a huge and unnecessary military buildup, federal spending on social programs increased in real terms and as a percentage of the federal budget.

    Entitlement spending continued to increase from 1980 to 1987, with the three largest programs—Social Security, Medicare, and other healthcare spending—increasing 84 percent.

    Reagan traded increases in defense spending for even larger increases in nondefense spending.

    Reagan’s defense budget bought systems that were technologically infeasible, were unneeded, were white elephants, or had no viable strategic rationale.

    Despite his small government rhetoric, Reagan seemed to have little sustained desire to cut nondefense spending, actually added a cabinet department (the Department of Veterans Affairs), and increased the number of federal employees from 2.8 million to 3 million.

    During Reagan’s first term, the yearly federal budget deficit grew from 2.7 percent to a then record of 6.3 percent of GDP. By 1989, at the end of his second term, the national debt stood at $2 trillion, making him one of the worst peacetime spendthrifts in US presidential history.

    Reagan was a welfare/warfare statist. True, he was a tax cutter. But he was also a tax raiser. Reagan’s tax hikes in 1982 and 1984 “then constituted the biggest tax increase ever in peacetime.” Reagan raised taxes in six out of the eight years of his presidency, thirteen times in all. He increased payroll taxes and had “the largest increase ever in corporate taxes.” Reagan’s net tax reduction “was the smallest per capita of any Republican president during the post-World War era.”

    Reagan also launched a vigorous attack against pornography and obscenity, expanded Nixon’s war on drugs, approved laws to jail many nonviolent offenders with mandatory minimum sentences for drug offenses, vastly expanded the federal prison population, signed into law the King holiday, approved protectionist measures, expanded Medicare, and signed an immigration bill that legalized almost 3 million undocumented aliens.

    As I said at the end of my review of , I cannot recommend the book highly enough. Not only does it demolish the myth that the Republican Party is the party of the Constitution and limited government, it especially destroys the Reagan myth. I also highly recommended Eland’s first book on the U.S. presidents: (Independent Institute, 2009, updated 2014).
    There is no spoon.

  13. #11
    Secession is a better option.

    “Once one concedes that a single world government is not necessary, then where does one logically stop at the permissibility of separate states? If Canada and the United States can be separate nations without being denounced as in a state of impermissible ‘anarchy’, why may not the South secede from the United States? New York State from the Union? New York City from the state? Why may not Manhattan secede? Each neighbourhood? Each block? Each house? Each person?”
    Quote Originally Posted by jmdrake View Post
    At the end of the "self righteous screed" he said what you have said over and over again. "Secession is the better option."
    Also, just as an FYI for everyone, I'd like to point out that the final paragraph is a quote from Murray Rothbard. The author put quote marks around it, but didn't cite the source, and there are no links in the article as it was posted in the OP.


    Frédéric Bastiat (1801-1850)

    • "When law and morality are in contradiction to each other, the citizen finds himself in the cruel alternative of either losing his moral sense, or of losing his respect for the law." - The Law (p. 54)
    • "Government is that great fiction, through which everybody endeavors to live at the expense of everybody else." - Government (p. 99)
    • "[W]ar is always begun in the interest of the few, and at the expense of the many."
      - Economic Sophisms - Second Series (p. 312)
    • "There are two principles that can never be reconciled - Liberty and Constraint."
      - Harmonies of Political Economy - Book One (p. 447)

    · tu ne cede malis sed contra audentior ito ·
    MOFA (Make Orwell Fiction Again)

  14. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by jmdrake View Post
    Anyhow, the way you feel towards the "self righteous screeds" of "quit wasting your time and do something productive" posts, others feel towards the "self righteous screeds" of "it you don't fall in line behind MAGA it's all over" posts. And this is from someone who grudgingly gave into "MAGA madness" in the last months of the campaign. If the election was stolen then there's nothing to do but wait and see if the army of Guiliani zombie lawyers fueled by the Lindsey Graham penance money can get that overturned. And then all hell will break loose. Either way there are far more productive things to do with our time, talent and treasure
    Things are happening quickly, both here and in MRL, so I can't answer all or every point right now.

    But quickly: agreed. Steal the "Become Ungovernable" concept back from the Marxists. I'm all for it.

    Second quick point: This is far beyond Trump and yet another corrupt US election (wow, what a shocker there, huh?)

    The things I see coming down the pike very rapidly now, are what I was, very gently and mildly prompting voting for Trump for, trying to buy a little time to get better organized against.

    OK...times up.

    You have sitting members of Congress now working up "retribution" lists to punish people for holding "incorrect" political views.

    The Speaker of the House has made it clear the first order of business is passing legislation that includes criminal sanctions against people for making "incorrect" statements about political figures.

    That just the tip of the iceberg.

    We've joked for years about all getting tossed into FEMA camps for re-education.

    Well, this is that time now...for real.

    If anything is going to be done, it better happen now.
    We must picture Hell as a state where everyone is perpetually concerned about his own dignity and advancement, where everyone has a grievance, and where everyone lives the deadly serious passions of envy, self-importance, and resentment. - C. S. Lewis

  15. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Anti Federalist View Post
    Things are happening quickly, both here and in MRL, so I can't answer all or every point right now.

    But quickly: agreed. Steal the "Become Ungovernable" concept back from the Marxists. I'm all for it.

    Second quick point: This is far beyond Trump and yet another corrupt US election (wow, what a shocker there, huh?)

    The things I see coming down the pike very rapidly now, are what I was, very gently and mildly prompting voting for Trump for, trying to buy a little time to get better organized against.

    OK...times up.

    You have sitting members of Congress now working up "retribution" lists to punish people for holding "incorrect" political views.

    The Speaker of the House has made it clear the first order of business is passing legislation that includes criminal sanctions against people for making "incorrect" statements about political figures.

    That just the tip of the iceberg.

    We've joked for years about all getting tossed into FEMA camps for re-education.

    Well, this is that time now...for real.

    If anything is going to be done, it better happen now.
    Live Free or Die Trying. This fight comes down to Good v Evil. Stand with Good and have No Fear. This life is only Transitory.
    "If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be." - Thomas Jefferson

    "It does not require a majority to prevail, but rather an irate, tireless minority keen to set brush fires in people's minds" - Sam Adams

  16. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Gumba of Liberty View Post
    Live Free or Die Trying. This fight comes down to Good v Evil. Stand with Good and have No Fear. This life is only Transitory.
    Yup, good advice...can't argue with that I suppose.
    We must picture Hell as a state where everyone is perpetually concerned about his own dignity and advancement, where everyone has a grievance, and where everyone lives the deadly serious passions of envy, self-importance, and resentment. - C. S. Lewis

  17. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Ender View Post
    Uh, NO.
    Didn't mention end of out of control inflation. Didn't mention the deregulatory framework that helped bring about a 20 year boom. No mention of oil shortages ending because of ending price controls and windfall taxes And to think it was just a coincidence that the strongest Cold Warrior president who dealt with the Soviets head on had little do with the Cold War ending is pretty daft. To claim he was interventionist because he got involved in Grenada (a very small and very effective intervention that cost little and stopped a Soviet outpost). Lebanaon (very small scale and withdrew when 200 troops died) And to say bombing Gaddafi was unprovoked is a lie. Opposing a retaliatory attack after he killed US soldiers isn't libertarianism. It's evil pacifism.
    Last edited by Krugminator2; 11-07-2020 at 01:41 PM.

  18. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by olehounddog View Post
    Fedbook would not let me share for 3-4 days. I'm guessing something I shared from GW Pundit.
    The chink in the armor of algorithms is their inability to identify content hidden in allegory and colloquialisms. In many ways, the all mighty algorithm of is even less capable than the PanAsian intelligence apparatus of Heinlein's Sixth Column.

    For example, if I refer to an item as gedunk then pretty much every Coastie, Sailor, and Marine knows what I'm referring to. The algorithm can easily identify the word as slang and understand its literal meaning through a word search. It can't understand the colloquial meaning, and even once that discovered the only thing an algorithm can do is black list the word. But what if I use ghee dunk? Do they black list ghee and dunk? What if I emoji the same? ������. I can place the three emojis in any order any my particular subgroup of veterans would immediately identify the meaning. I can also use any candy emoji or image thumbnail and convey the same.

    20-somethings in Si Valley think way too much of themselves. IMO

    XNN
    "They sell us the president the same way they sell us our clothes and our cars. They sell us every thing from youth to religion the same time they sell us our wars. I want to know who the men in the shadows are. I want to hear somebody asking them why. They can be counted on to tell us who our enemies are but theyre never the ones to fight or to die." - Jackson Browne Lives In The Balance



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  20. #17
    Apparently those emojis were not on the forums standard list. they were a stick of butter, a basket ball and a basket.

    XNN
    "They sell us the president the same way they sell us our clothes and our cars. They sell us every thing from youth to religion the same time they sell us our wars. I want to know who the men in the shadows are. I want to hear somebody asking them why. They can be counted on to tell us who our enemies are but theyre never the ones to fight or to die." - Jackson Browne Lives In The Balance

  21. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Krugminator2 View Post
    Didn't mention end of out of control inflation. Didn't mention the deregulatory framework that helped bring about a 20 year boom. No mention of oil shortages ending because of ending price controls and windfall taxes And to think it was just a coincidence that the strongest Cold Warrior president who dealt with the Soviets head on had little do with the Cold War ending is pretty daft. To claim he was interventionist because he got involved in Grenada (a very small and very effective intervention that cost little and stopped a Soviet outpost). Lebanaon (very small scale and withdrew when 200 troops died) And to say bombing Gaddafi was unprovoked is a lie. Opposing a retaliatory attack after he killed US soldiers isn't libertarianism. It's evil pacifism.
    NOPE.
    Romanticizing Reagan

    09/25/2018Chris Calton

    Among conservatives, Ronald Reagan is held in deific esteem. Find any Republican debate Bingo or drinking game, and his name is certain to be one of the triggers to take a drink. Even among many libertarians, Reagan is still viewed as one of our greatest presidents, if not the greatest outright.

    The reasons for the romanticization of Reagan are difficult to understand. But Ronald Reagan did have some of the best rhetoric when it came to conservative and libertarian issues, and perhaps this is a good explanation for his appeal. But when you look at his policies as president, it seems like he stands for everything conservatives, and especially libertarians, are against. So let’s compare rhetoric to policy.

    Spending and Taxation
    In one State of the Union address, Reagan offered a rousing condemnation of the problem with the federal deficit. He gave the pithy insight that “we can’t spend ourselves rich,” which is one of the more popularly quoted phrases among conservatives and libertarians.

    In their own hypocrisy, Democrats love to point out the massive increases in spending that took place under Reagan. But even if it is for the wrong reasons, they are correct in this observation. Reagan may not have been trying to spend Americans rich, but he was certainly spending.

    Between Fiscal Years 1982 and 1989 (the years for which Reagan would have signed the budget), federal expenditures grew by more than 60%, increasing from 1.179 trillion to 1.904 trillion dollars.

    The common excuse for this, of course, is the arms race of the Cold War. Even if you accept this as a reasonable reason to massively increase the federal deficit (while hypocritically condemning such actions in your predecessors), the increase in military spending only accounts for a portion of the total growth.

    Spending on education grew by 68%, despite Reagan’s unfulfilled campaign promise to shut down the Department of Education. Healthcare spending grew by 71%. Reagan also increased government subsidies, such as the one mentioned in my sugar article, as well as myriad other domestic spending categories.

    The common excuse here is that once we accept the “need” for the massive increases to military spending (which set the destructive precedent that any suggestion of budget cuts to the financial black hole that is the Department of Defense will cost a Republican an election), then it was a Democratic Congress that forced the compromise of domestic spending in exchange for the increase in military spending.

    Even if there is some truth to that — and I’m sure there is — we are now accepting a great deal of compromise on conservative principles and making excuses for Reagan’s hypocritical proselytizing about federal deficits. This doesn’t even mention the common praise by Reaganites that his military spending was a strategy to help collapse the Soviet Union by essentially duplicating socialist spending logic (pumping money into government agencies — in this case, the military). It almost seems to be a harbinger of George W. Bush’s eyebrow-raiser: “I’ve abandoned free market principles to save the free market system.”

    But whatever shortcomings Reagan may have had when it came to government spending, he made up for in tax cuts, right?

    This claim seems to be even more mythologized by conservatives. Where conservatives will make excuses for Reagan-era spending, they tend to be outright misinformed regarding Reagan’s tax policies.

    In August of his first year in office, Reagan did sign into law the Economic Recovery Tax Act. This is something in the Reagan legacy that I can actually get behind. Although I agree with Ron Paul that the proper rate of income tax is 0%, I’m going to support, to paraphrase Milton Friedman, any cuts in taxes at any time for any reason. This piece of legislation did that.

    What conservatives tend to forget (or omit) are Reagan’s other pieces of tax legislation. The very next year, Reagan signed the Tax Equity and Fiscal Responsibility Act (TEFRA). This increased numerous taxes as well as eliminating certain deductions. It is important to keep in mind here that conservatives don’t have the excuse of a Democratic congress. The tax increases in this bill were added in Senate revisions when the Senate was still controlled by Republicans. This flies directly in the face of another popular piece of Reagan rhetoric, made ten years later when speaking to the National Association of Realtors, that “We don’t have a trillion-dollar debt because we haven’t taxed enough; we have a trillion dollar debt because we spend too much.”

    Still in the Republican-dominated year of 1982, Reagan also increased taxes on the trucking industry and gasoline, which he actually cited as being an economic stimulant to create 320,000 jobs. This type of tax-and-spend policy is straight out of Keynes’s playbook, but conservatives prefer to remember Reagan’s quote about reading the great Austrian economists: “I’ve always been a voracious reader — I have read the economic views of von Mises and Hayek, and Bastiat.” He may have read them; Mises Institute is even home to President Reagan’s thank-you letter to Margit von Mises for sending him a copy of Human Action — but if he did read them, it seems he ignored them.

    Likewise, the payroll tax increase of the following year was also not forced on Reagan. In fact, he requested it. He also passed the Deficit Reduction Act of 1984, which was another contradictory attempt to reduce deficits by raising taxes.

    Along with the tax cuts of 1981, Conservatives are inclined to tout Reagan’s Tax Reform Act of 1986. This is the oft-hailed piece of legislation that lowered the top marginal tax rate on personal income from 50% to 28%. But this bill wasn’t as much of a tax cut as it was a reorganization of tax obligations. In addition to cutting personal income tax rates, it also closed a great deal of significant tax deductions (which is effectively a tax hike in itself), increased restrictions on retirement accounts, and expanded the criteria for the Alternative Minimum Tax which extended the umbrella of this tax burden to affect many middle-class taxpayers.

    As long as conservatism and especially libertarianism claim to be the ideologies opposed to high levels of spending and taxation, Reagan seems like an unlikely hero. The excuses that so-called “Reagan Republicans” make for him on these issues seem flimsy and misinformed. In comparing his words to his deeds, Reagan seems no different than any other politician: outright hypocritical.

    Regulations and Free Trade
    During Ronald Reagan’s presidential campaign, the third of his four pillars of Reaganomics was regulatory reform. Namely, he was on a mission to reduce federal regulations (an applaudable goal). This is, in fact, one of the chief reasons why democrats criticize his presidency; he supposedly spent his tenure recklessly deregulating.

    In a speech given by Art Laffer, Reagan’s economic advisor, Dr. Laffer mentions a story of Reagan dropping the Code of Federal Regulations on a table to demonstrate its massive size. “Do you remember that?” Laffer asked the audience, “Do you remember when he dropped it, the thump that went on the table? I mean, it was a phenomenally impressive thing, not only for him to have lifted it, but also for him to have reduced it” (emphasis mine).

    The problem here is that Reagan didn’t reduce the code. It is true that Reagan oversaw a few years of very minor deregulation (in the first half of his first term, the Code of Federal Regulations decreased by about 1% of its total length). One of his first acts in office was to sign Executive Order 12291 which required an additional degree of bureaucratic oversight before a federal department could pass a regulation. This did allow for the delay and revision of certain regulations (if a regulation was rejected — and many were — the department was able to modify and resubmit it for approval). But the decade of the 1980s saw a roughly 20% increase (this brought the Code of Federal Regulations from a total of just over 100,000 to just over 120,000 pages, if we focus on only the regulatory pages).

    In fairness, some level of deregulation did occur under the Reagan administration. But in fact, the same could be said of Jimmy Carter. As William A. Niskanen, who served on the Council of Economic Advisors to Reagan and is the namesake of the Niskanen Center that was formed after his death, writes: “The reduction in economic regulation that started in the Carter administration continues, but at a slower rate.” Both Presidents contributed to some degree of deregulation. But as a counter to these positive policies, he also contributed a “substantial increase in import barriers.” Niskanen concludes that “deregulation was clearly the lowest priority among the major elements of the Reagan economic program.”

    Like his tax policies, Reagan’s approach to regulation was a mixed bag. There is some good in there, and I believe in giving credit where due, but it is important to keep in mind that Reagan’s deregulatory policies are grossly overstated by both parties. Even if we are to applaud his positive contributions here, intellectual and philosophical consistency would demand that we offer similar deference to Jimmy Carter’s regulatory record. Nonetheless, what deregulation did occur arguably accounts for some of Reagan’s most positive policies (such as the elimination of certain price controls and anti-trust law reduction).

    It is still difficult to refer to Reagan as a “pro-capitalism” president, though. His rhetoric, of course, makes Reagan sound like the most capitalistic president since Calvin Coolidge (this, actually, could still be true, but only because all of the interim presidents demonstrate such a poor performance in this category as well). But Reagan was a protectionist, and a hypocritical one.

    In his 1988 State of the Union address , Ronald Reagan said, “We should always remember: Protectionism is destructionism. America's jobs, America's growth, America's future depend on trade — trade that is free, open, and fair.” The hypocrisy is apparent when Reagan’s policies on trade in the preceding years are examined.

    Not only did Reagan expand the New Deal-style agricultural subsidies that have persisted for nearly a century now, but he reinstated import quotas on certain crops. The purpose of import quotas, of course, are to artificially limit the supply of goods to protect domestic producers. Naturally, this comes at the expense not only of foreign producers but also of domestic manufacturers who have to now purchase more expensive supplies.

    Additionally, Reagan pressured various other countries to accept reductions in American imports of the commodities they produce, such as steel. Such tactics were used to convince countries to restrict their own production and export of goods imported by the United States, including textiles, lumber, machine tools, and computer chips while simultaneously requiring Japanese automobile manufacturers to order more American-made parts. This doesn’t touch on the tariffs imposed on other goods as well as strengthening the unquestionably cronyist Export-Import Bank.

    Even Milton Friedman, who often spoke very highly of Ronald Reagan, wrote a condemnation of Reagan’s protectionist policies entitled “Outdoing Smoot-Hawley” (a reference to a massive tariff bill signed into law under the Hoover administration that is generally considered to have contributed to the severity of the Great Depression). In it, Friedman takes the Reagan administration to task for the so-called “voluntary” restraints imposed on other countries and calls Reagan out for not using his veto power to prevent these bills (which, again, removes the “Democrat controlled Congress” excuse that Republicans love to fall back on when defending Reagan’s shortcomings). Friedman accuses William Brock and Clayton Yeutter, Reagan’s trade negotiators, of “making Smoot-Hawley look positively benign.”

    In an effort not to misrepresent Dr. Friedman’s position, I'll note he calls Reagan “a strong supporter of the principle of free trade” (though he cites his “admirable rhetoric” as being a part of this perspective), but condemns his protectionism as “offsetting some of the good effects of President Reagan’s domestic policies.”

    It is, of course, common for many conservatives to praise protectionist economic policies. In this, it is plausible that between Reagan’s exaggerated, albeit mixed, performance on regulations and his anti-free trade protectionism, these are categories that may only reinforce the Republican love of Reagan.

    But one thing remains clear: Reagan was not the free-enterprise supporting capitalist he claimed to be.

    Civil Liberties and Foreign Affairs
    Perhaps Reagan’s most egregious hypocrisies were his actions in the name of the “War on Drugs” while espousing the common bromides about liberty. “Government’s first duty,” a common Reagan quote from a 1981 speech begins, “is to protect the people, not run their lives.” But when it came to what people put into their bodies — even for medicinal purposes — Reagan was energetically devoted to running the lives of United States citizens.

    In 1982, the National Academy of Sciences published a six-year study that concluded with a recommendation for the decriminalizing of marijuana which, the study said, had “as yet no clear evidence on the possible long-term effects” on potential health consequence. Reagan chose to ignore this study and, in the same year, picked up the Nixon mantle and raised “the battle flag . . . to win the war on drugs.” California marijuana was one of his primary targets.

    Under this small-government, liberty-loving president, government spending on law enforcement, prisons, and the Drug War skyrocketed, along with incarceration rates. By 1989, the number of prisoners had doubled, and the majority of those added under Reagan’s tenure were non-violent marijuana offenders.

    On top of his expansion of government for the purpose of curtailing civil liberties, Reagan convinced Congress to suspend the Posse Comitatus Act of 1878, which was passed to prevent the government from deploying the military against US citizens. The president then used the military and law enforcement (which itself was now becoming militarized) to move through California to destroy marijuana plants.

    His offenses didn’t stop there, either. In 1984, Reagan signed the Comprehensive Crime Control Act into law. Among other things, this is the law that reinstated the legality of “civil asset forfeiture” by law enforcement officials. According to this policy, police can seize property from somebody regardless of the owner’s innocence in the eyes of the law; it is effectively charging the property with the crime, and regaining your seized assets is nearly impossible. When James Burton was arrested in 1987 for growing marijuana to treat his glaucoma, his entire 90-acre farm was seized, and both he and his wife were given ten days to leave the property. Burton was not allowed to give any testimony in defense of this property seizure because, in the words of the District Judge Ronald Meredith who ordered the confiscation, “there is no defense against forfeiture.” This created a major avenue for corruption and police revenue that is still abused today. By 1987, police were sizing more than $1 billion a year from US citizens, 80% of whom were never charged with a crime.

    In 1986, Reagan signed into law The Anti-Drug Abuse Act. In this bill, mandatory minimum sentences for drug related arrests were not only reinstated, but they were made more severe. This removes a judge’s right to use his or her own discretion when applying a sentence to a drug offender. Under this law, people have spent decades in prison for peacefully smoking marijuana, something that Reagan’s own daughter admitted to doing in her autobiography. This, of course, begs the question if he would have put his own daughter through the same severe punishments that he made hundreds of thousands of other people go through.

    And if conservatives believe Reagan’s pro-Constitution rhetoric, his actions in the Drug War only serve to disappoint. While enforcing the Reagan drug laws, the military and law enforcement agents regularly violated the 4th Amendment to the Constitution, which was intended to protect citizens against “unreasonable searches and seizers.” In a dissenting opinion, Justice Thurgood Marshall argued that “ There is no drug exception to the Constitution.” Reagan, of course, thought otherwise.

    And while Conservatives will continue to praise Reagan for his Cold War policies, they should at least acknowledge his hypocrisies in his Drug War/Cold War contradictions. After Congress passed the Boland Amendment, the US military was explicitly prohibited from providing military aid to Manuel Noriega’s “contras” who were fighting against Communists in Nicaragua. To continue secretly funding the contras, the Reagan Administration — headed by Lieutenant Colonel Oliver North — illegally sold weapons to Iran (a country whose potential dangers conservatives continue to bluster about) to funnel money under the table to Noriega. While this was taking place, Noriega was directly aiding the smuggling of cocaine into the US from Colombia. This was not a secret to the administration . While the Reagan administration had no issues with jailing medical marijuana patients domestically, they turned a blind eye to Cold War allies who were smuggling drugs into the US.

    If these affronts to civil liberties aren’t enough, Reagan was also terrible on the issue of the conservative sacred cow: gun rights. Not only did Reagan ban open-carry handguns in California in 1967 , he also signed a Federal automatic weapons ban in 1986 . This bill, the Firearms Owner Protection Act, is praised as a pro-gun act for its repeals of previous regulations, but one can’t ignore the restrictions that were added. Reagan’s support of gun control continued after his presidency, when he supported both the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act and the 1994 Assault Weapons Ban (conservatives like to criticize Clinton for this law, but it likely could never have passed without Reagan’s support, passing the House of Representatives by only two votes).
    https://mises.org/wire/romanticizing-reagan
    There is no spoon.

  22. #19
    Supporting Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anti Federalist View Post
    I've answered this a hundred times or more.

    I could, with equal frustration, ask: "What has caused blindness to approaching danger to become so rampant as to render a society self suicidal?"

    Yet another self righteous screed from an unknown internet pundit telling me how stupid I am for choosing a side in what I see as a life or death struggle is hardly helping.
    I am with you.
    Citizen of Arizona
    @cleaner4d4

    I am a libertarian. I am advocating everyone enjoy maximum freedom on both personal and economic issues as long as they do not bring violence unto others.

  23. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by Anti Federalist View Post
    OK...times up.

    You have sitting members of Congress now working up "retribution" lists to punish people for holding "incorrect" political views.
    It's absolutely insane that a member of Congress would encourage this. I know we all saw this coming years ago, but having it at your doorstep is another matter. While I don't think anything drastic will come of it, this time, it is a huge step closer into the abyss.

    Now that the left has won, they will be emboldened to send in their cavalry to route the broken infantry line. The all-out assault against the 1A, 2A, and 4A during the next few years will be unprecedented. We'll eventually long for the glory days of Bush and Obama at this rate.
    "I shall bring justice to Westeros. Every man shall reap what he has sown, from the highest lord to the lowest gutter rat. They have made my kingdom bleed, and I do not forget that."
    -Stannis Baratheon

  24. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by Anti Federalist View Post
    I've answered this a hundred times or more.

    I could, with equal frustration, ask: "What has caused blindness to approaching danger to become so rampant as to render a society self suicidal?"

    Yet another self righteous screed from an unknown internet pundit telling me how stupid I am for choosing a side in what I see as a life or death struggle is hardly helping.
    JFYI, Gary is not an "unknown internet pundit". He's been one of the biggest advocates against the whole Covid mess & is completely into real freedom & liberty for all.

    https://www.google.com/search?client...UTF-8&oe=UTF-8
    There is no spoon.

  25. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by Ender View Post
    JFYI, Gary is not an "unknown internet pundit". He's been one of the biggest advocates against the whole Covid mess & is completely into real freedom & liberty for all.

    https://www.google.com/search?client...UTF-8&oe=UTF-8
    I never recall reading him...and he makes the same case that many others have made, which I disagreed with and gave, what I thought to be, valid reasons why.

    It's a moot issue now anyways...all I was trying to do is kick the can down the road to buy some time.

    That effort resulted in failure, and now sitting members of the US Congress and federal law enforcement are drawing up "retribution" lists to properly punish those that dared go off the reservation...that's just for starters.

    So, here we go, for better or worse...I'll send you my contact info in a rep comment if you find yourself in a bind.
    We must picture Hell as a state where everyone is perpetually concerned about his own dignity and advancement, where everyone has a grievance, and where everyone lives the deadly serious passions of envy, self-importance, and resentment. - C. S. Lewis

  26. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by Anti Federalist View Post
    I never recall reading him...and he makes the same case that many others have made, which I disagreed with and gave, what I thought to be, valid reasons why.

    It's a moot issue now anyways...all I was trying to do is kick the can down the road to buy some time.

    That effort resulted in failure, and now sitting members of the US Congress and federal law enforcement are drawing up "retribution" lists to properly punish those that dared go off the reservation...that's just for starters.

    So, here we go, for better or worse...I'll send you my contact info in a rep comment if you find yourself in a bind.
    No problema- just wanted to make sure you saw some of his stuff- he's on the Rockwell site a lot. And, you'll always be one of my fav forum members.
    There is no spoon.

  27. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by Ender View Post

    You keep posting these screeds. You say nope. The only thing that article addressed that I said were regulations. And even then the screed made a concession that the Reagan administration had some deregulation.

    Just because malcontents smear Reagan doesn't mean anything to me. They are like leftists. They are constantly aggrieved and unhappy and spitball anyone for trying to make things better.



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  29. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by Krugminator2 View Post
    You keep posting these screeds. You say nope. The only thing that article addressed that I said were regulations. And even then the screed made a concession that the Reagan administration had some deregulation.

    Just because malcontents smear Reagan doesn't mean anything to me. They are like leftists. They are constantly aggrieved and unhappy and spitball anyone for trying to make things better.
    Screeds..... you keep using that word- I do not think it means what you think it means.

    From Murray Rothbard:

    Ronald Reagan: An Autopsy
    By Murray N. Rothbard


    First published in Liberty, Vol. 2, No. 4, March 1989.

    The Reagan Years: Libertarian Rhetoric, Statist Policies

    How did Reagan manage to pursue egregiously statist policies in the name of liberty and of “getting government off our backs?” How was he able to follow this course of deception and mendacity?

    Don’t try to get Ronnie off the hook by blaming Congress. Like the general public – and all too many libertarians – Congress was merely a passive receptacle for Ronnie’s wishes. Congress passed the Reagan budgets with a few marginal adjustments here and there – and gave him virtually all the legislation, and ratified all the personnel, he wanted. For one Bork there are thousands who made it. The last eight years have been a Reagan Administration for the Gipper to make or break.

    There was no “Reagan Revolution.” Any “revolution” in the direction of liberty (in Ronnie’s words “to get government off our backs”) would reduce the total level of government spending. And that means reduce in absolute terms, not as proportion of the gross national product, or corrected for inflation, or anything else. There is no divine commandment that the federal government must always be at least as great a proportion of the national product as it was in 1980. If the government was a monstrous swollen Leviathan in 1980, as libertarians were surely convinced, as the inchoate American masses were apparently convinced and as Reagan and his cadre claimed to believe, then cutting government spending was in order. At the very least, federal government spending should have been frozen, in absolute terms, so that the rest of the economy would be allowed to grow in contrast. Instead, Ronald Reagan cut nothing, even in the heady first year, 1981.

    At first, the only “cut” was in Carter’s last-minute loony-tunes estimates for the future. But in a few short years, Reagan’s spending surpassed even Carter’s irresponsible estimates. Instead, Reagan not only increased government spending by an enormous amount – so enormous that it would take a 40 percent cut to bring us back to Carter’s wild spending totals of 1980 – he even substantially increased the percentage of government spending to GNP. That’s a “revolution”?

    The much-heralded 1981 tax cut was more than offset by two tax increases that year. One was “bracket creep,” by which just inflation wafted people into higher tax brackets, so that with the same real income (in terms of purchasing power) people found themselves paying a higher proportion of their income in taxes, even though the official tax rate went down. The other was the usual whopping increase in Social Security taxes which, however, don’t count, in the perverse semantics of our time, as “taxes”; they are only “insurance premiums.” In the ensuing years the Reagan Administration has constantly raised taxes – to punish us for the fake tax cut of 1981 – beginning in 1982 with the largest single tax increase in American history, costing taxpayers $100 billion.

    The bottom line is that tax revenues have gone up an enormous amount under the eight years of Reagan; the only positive thing we can say for them is that revenues as percentage of the gross national product are up only slightly since 1980. The result: the monstrous deficit, now apparently permanently fixed somewhere around $200 billion, and the accompanying tripling of the total federal debt in the eight blessed years of the Reagan Era. Is that what the highly touted “Reagan Revolution” amounts to, then? A tripling of the national debt?

    We should also say a word about another of Ronnie’s great “libertarian” accomplishments. In the late 1970’s, it became obvious even to the man in the street that the Social Security System was bankrupt, kaput. For the first time in fifty years there was an excellent chance to get rid of the biggest single racket that acts as a gigantic Ponzi scheme to fleece the American taxpayer. Instead, Reagan brought in the famed “Randian libertarian” Alan Greenspan, who served as head of a bipartisan commission, performing the miracle of “saving Social Security” and the masses have rested content with the system ever since. How did he “save” it? By raising taxes (oops “premiums”), of course; by that route, the government can “save” any program. (Bipartisan: both parties acting in concert to put both of their hands in your pocket.)

    The way Reagan-Greenspan saved Social Security is a superb paradigm of Reagan’s historical function in all areas of his realm; he acted to bail out statism and to co-opt and defuse any libertarian or quasi-libertarian opposition. The method worked brilliantly, for Social Security and other programs.

    How about deregulation? Didn’t Ronnie at least deregulate the regulation-ridden economy inherited from the evil Carter? Just the opposite. The outstanding measures of deregulation were all passed by the Carter Administration, and, as is typical of that luckless President, the deregulation was phased in to take effect during the early Reagan years, so that the Gipper could claim the credit. Such was the story with oil and gas deregulation (which the Gipper did advance from September to January of 1981); airline deregulation and the actual abolition of the Civil Aeronautics Board, and deregulation of trucking. That was it.

    The Gipper deregulated nothing, abolished nothing. Instead of keeping his pledge to abolish the Departments of Energy and Education, he strengthened them, and even wound up his years in office adding a new Cabinet post, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs. Overall, the quantity and degree of government regulation of the economy was greatly increased and intensified during the Reagan years. The hated OSHA, the scourge of small business and at the time the second most-hated agency of federal government (surely you need not ask which is the first most-hated), was not only not abolished; it too was strengthened and reinforced. Environmentalist restrictions were greatly accelerated, especially after the heady early years when selling off some public lands was briefly mentioned, and the proponents of actually using and developing locked-up government resources (James Watt, Anne Burford, Rita Lavelle) were disgraced and sent packing as a warning to any future “anti-environmentalists.”

    The Reagan Administration, supposedly the champion of free trade, has been the most protectionist in American history, raising tariffs, imposing import quotas, and – as another neat bit of creative semantics – twisting the arms of the Japanese to impose “voluntary” export quotas on automobiles and microchips. It has made the farm program the most abysmal of this century: boosting price supports and production quotas, and paying many more billions of taxpayer money to farmers so that they can produce less and raise prices to consumers.

    And we should never forget a disastrous and despotic program that has received unanimous support from the media and from the envious American public: the massive witch hunt and reign of terror against the victimless non-crime of “insider trading.” In a country where real criminals – muggers, rapists, and “inside” thieves – are allowed to run rampant, massive resources and publicity are directed toward outlawing the use of one’s superior knowledge and insight in order to make profits on the market.

    In the course of this reign of terror, it is not surprising that freedom of speech was the first thing to go by the boards. Government spies and informers busily report conversations over martinis (“Hey Joe, I heard that XYZ Corp. is going to merge with ABC.”) All this is being done by the cartelizing and fascistic Securities and Exchange Commission, the Department of Justice and its much-hailed Savanarola in New York, Rudolf Giuliani. All this is the work of the beloved Gipper, the “free-market,” “libertarian” Reagan Administration. And where are the “conservative libertarians”? Where are the “free market economists” to point this out and condemn it?

    Foreign aid, a vast racket by which American taxpayers are mulcted in order to subsidize American export firms and foreign governments (mostly dictatorships), has been vastly expanded under Reagan. The Administration also encouraged the nation’s banks to inflate and pour money down Third World rat-holes; then bailed out the banks and tin-pot socialist dictatorships at the expense of U.S. taxpayers (via tax increases) and consumers (via inflation). Since the discrediting of Friedmanite monetarism by the end of the first Reagan term, the original monetarist policy of allowing the dollar to fluctuate freely has been superseded by Keynesian Secretary of Treasury James Baker, who has concerted with foreign central banks to try to freeze the dollar within various zones. The interference has been, as usual, futile and counterproductive, but that will not stop the soon-to-be even more powerful Baker from trying to fulfill, or at least move strongly toward, the old Keynesian dream of one world fiat paper currency (or at least fixed exchange rates of the various national currencies) issued by one world Central Bank – in short, economic world government.

    But didn’t Ronnie “bring down inflation”? Sure, but he did it, not by some miracle, but the old-fashioned way: by the steepest recession (read: depression) since the 1930s. And now, as a result of his inflationary monetary policies, inflation is back with a roar – which the Teflon President will leave as one of his great legacies to the Bush Administration.

    And then there is another charming legacy: the reckless inflationary course, encouraged by the Reagan Administration, of the nation’s savings-and-loan banks. Virtually the entire industry is now bankrupt, and FDIC – the federal agency supposedly “insuring” S&L depositors – is bankrupt. Instead of allowing the banks and their deluded depositors to pay the price of their profligacy, everyone of both parties, including our “free-market” Reaganauts, is prepared to use taxpayer money or the printing press to bail out the entire industry – to the tune of an estimated 50 to 100 billion dollars. (These estimates, by the way, come from government sources, which notoriously underestimate future costs of their programs.)

    I have been cleaving to the strictly economic realm because even the staunchest pro-Reagan libertarian will not dare to claim that Ronnie has been a blessing for civil liberties. On the contrary. In addition to his reign of terror on Wall Street (who cares about the civil liberties of stock traders anyway?), Reagan worked to escalate toward infinity the insane “war against drugs.” Far from the 1970s movement toward repealing marijuana laws, an ever greater flow of men and resources – countless billions of dollars – are being hysterically poured into combating a drug “problem” that clearly gets worse in direct proportion to the intensity of the “war.”

    The outbreak of drug fascism, moreover, is a superb illustration of the interconnectedness of civil liberty and economic freedom. Under cover of combating drugs, the government has cracked down on our economic and financial privacy, so that carrying cash has become prima fade evidence of “laundering” drug money. And so the government steps up its long-cherished campaign to get people to abstain from cash and into using government-controlled banks. The government is already insinuating foreign exchange controls – now the legal obligation to “report” large amounts of cash taken out of the country – into our personal and economic life.

    And every day more evil drugs are being found that must be denounced and outlawed: the latest is the dread menace of anabolic steroids. As part of this futile war, we are being urged by the Reaganites to endure compulsory urine testing (supervised, of course, since otherwise the testee might be able to purchase and substitute black market drug-free urine). In this grotesque proposal, government is not only not off our backs, it is now also insisting on joining us in the bathroom.

    Perhaps the Gipper cannot be directly blamed – but certainly he has set the moral climate – for the increasingly savage Puritanism of the 1980s: the virtual outlawry of smoking, the escalating prohibition of pornography, even the partial bringing back of Prohibition (outlawing drunken driving, raising the legal drinking age to 21, making bartenders – or friendly hosts – legally responsible for someone else’s drunken driving, etc.).

    Under Reagan, the civil liberties balance has been retipped in favor of the government and against the people: restricting our freedom to obtain government documents under the Freedom of Information Act and stepping up the penalties on privately printed and disseminated news about activities of the government, on the one hand; more “freedom” for our runaway secret police, the CIA, to restrict the printing of news, and to wiretap private individuals, on the other. And to cap its hypocrisy, as it escalated its war on drugs, the Reagan Administration looked the other way on drug running by its own CIA.

    On foreign policy, the best we can say about Ronnie is that he did not launch World War III. Apart from that, his foreign policy was a series of murdering blunders:

    His idiotic know-nothing intervention into the cauldron of Lebanon, resulting in the murder of several hundred US Marines.
    His failed attempt – lauded by Reaganites ever since – to murder Colonel Khadafy by an air strike – and succeeding instead in slaying his baby daughter, after which our media sneered at Khadafy for looking haggard, and commented that the baby was “only adopted.”

    His stumblebum intervention into the Persian Gulf, safeguarding oil tankers of countries allied to Iraq in the Iraq–Iran war. (Ironically, the US. imports practically no oil from the Gulf, unlike Western Europe and Japan, where there was no hysteria and who certainly sent no warships to the Gulf.) In one of the most bizarre events in the history of warfare, the Iraqi sinking of the U.S.S. Stark was dismissed instantly – and without investigation, and in the teeth of considerable evidence to the contrary – as an “accident,” followed immediately by blaming Iran (and using the sinking as an excuse to step up our pro-Iraq intervention in the war). This was followed by a US warship’s sinking of a civilian Iranian airliner, murdering hundreds of civilians, and blaming – you guessed it! – the Iranian government for this catastrophe. More alarming than these actions of the Reagan Administration was the supine and pusillanimous behavior of the media, in allowing the Gipper to get away with all this.
    As we all know only too well, the height of Reagan’s Teflon qualities came with Iran-Contra. At the time, I navely thought that the scandal would finish the bastard off. But no one saw anything wrong with the Administration’s jailing private arms salesmen to Iran, while at the very same time engaging in arms sales to Iran itself. In Reagan’s America, apparently anything, any crookery, any aggression or mass murder, is OK if allegedly performed for noble, patriotic motives. Only personal greed is considered a no-no.

    I have not yet mentioned the great foreign-policy triumph of the Reagan Administration: the invasion and conquest of tiny Grenada, a pitiful little island-country with no army, air force, or navy. A “rescue” operation was launched to save US medical students who never sought our deliverance. Even though the enemy consisted of a handful of Cuban construction workers, it still took us a week to finish the Grenadans off, during the course of which the three wings of our armed forces tripped over each other and our military distinguished itself by bombing a Grenadan hospital. The operation was as much a botch as the Carter attempt to rescue the American hostages. The only difference was that this time the enemy was helpless.

    But we won didn’t we? Didn’t we redeem the US loss in Vietnam and allow America to “stand tall”? Yes, we did win. We beat up on a teeny country; and even botched that! If that is supposed to make Americans stand tall, then far better we sit short. Anyway, it’s about time we learned that Short is Beautiful.

    The US war against the Sandinistas on the other hand, which has been conducted at enormous expense and waged hand-in-hand with Guatemalan, Honduran, and Salvadoran dictators, is going down the drain, despite illegal CIA mining of harbors and injury to neutral shipping. Even the nearly comatose American public is giving up on the idea of supporting bandit guerrillas, so long as they are anti-Communist, despite the best efforts of Ollie and Secord and Singlaub and Abrams and all the rest of the war crowd.

    The Reagan Administration’s continued aid and support to Pol Pot in Cambodia, the most genocidal butcher of our time, is more reprehensible but less visible to most Americans. As a result, Pol Pot’s thugs are mobilizing at this very moment on the Thai border to return and take over Cambodia as soon as the Vietnamese pull out, presumably to renew their bizarre mass murders. But you see, that’s okay with the Reaganites because the Cambodian Commies are guerrilla fighters against the Vietnamese (pro-Soviet) Commies, who by definition are evil. Pol Pot’s butchers as “freedom fighters” show us that, in the arsenal of the Reaganite Right, “freedom,” like “taxes” and many other crucial words, means, as in the case of Humpty Dumpty, whatever they choose it to.

    Grenada was the perfect war as far as many conservatives (and apparently much of the American public) were concerned: it was quick and easy to win, with virtually no risk of loss, and allowed ample opportunities to promote the military (and their Commander-in-Chief) as heroes while bragging up the victory on television – in short, allowing the U.S. to glory in its status as a bully. (It helped eradicate the awful memory of Vietnam, which was the perfect war for American centrist liberals: virtually impossible to win, horribly expensive in terms of men and property – and best of all, it could go on forever without resolution, like the War on Poverty, fueling their sense of guilt while providing safe but exciting jobs for members of their techno-bureaucratic class.)

    While the American masses do not want war with Russia or even aid to the bandit Contras, they do want an ever-expanding military and other aggravated symbols of a “strong,” “tough” America, an America that will, John Wayne-like, stomp on teeny pests like Commie Grenada, or, perhaps, any very small island that might possess the tone and the ideology of the Ayatollah.

    Setting the Stage: The Anti-Government Rebellion of the 1970s

    I am convinced that the historic function of Ronald Reagan was to co-opt, eviscerate and ultimately destroy the substantial wave of anti-governmental, and quasi-libertarian, sentiment that erupted in the U.S. during the 1970s. Did he perform this task consciously? Surely too difficult a feat for a man barely compos. No, Reagan was wheeled into performing this task by his Establishment handlers.

    The task of co-optation needed to be done because the 1970s, particularly 1973–75, were marked by an unusual and striking conjunction of crisis – crises that fed on each other to lead to a sudden and cumulative disillusionment with the federal government. It was this symbiosis of anti-government reaction that led me to develop my “case for libertarian optimism” during the mid-1970’s, in the expectation of a rapid escalation of libertarian influence in America.

    1973–74 saw the abject failure of the Nixon wage-price control program, and the development of something Keynesians assumed could never happen: the combination of double-digit inflation and a severe recession. High unemployment and high inflation happened again, even more intensely, during the greater recession of 1979–82. Since Keynesianism rests on the idea that government should pump in spending during recessions and take out spending during inflationary booms, what happens when both occur at the same time? As Rand would say: Blankout! There is no answer. And so, there was disillusionment in the government’s handling of the macro-economy, deepening during the accelerating inflation of the 1970s and the beginnings of recession in 1979.

    At the same time, people began to be fed up, increasingly and vocally, with high taxes: income taxes, property taxes, sales taxes, you name it. Especially in the West, an organized tax rebel movement developed, with its own periodicals and organizations However misguided strategically, the spread of the tax rebellion signaled a growing disillusion with big government. I was privileged to be living in California during the election year of 1978, when Proposition 13 was passed. It was a genuinely inspiring sight. In the face of hysterical opposition and smears from the entire California Establishment Democratic and Republican, Big Business and labor, academia, economists, and all of the press the groundswell for Prop 13 burgeoned. Everyone was against it but the people. If the eventual triumph of Ronald Reagan is the best case against “libertarian populism,” Prop. 13 was the best case in its favor.

    Also exhilarating was the smashing defeat of US imperialism in Vietnam in 1975 – exhilarating because this first loss of a war by the United States, many of us believed, was bound to get Americans to rethink the disastrous warmongering bipartisan foreign policy that had plagued us since the unlamented days of Woodrow Wilson.

    On the civil liberties front, the de facto legalization of marijuana was a sign that the nonsense of drug prohibition would soon be swept away. (Ye gods! Was that only a decade ago?) Inflationary recession; high taxes; prohibition laws; defeat in foreign war; across the board, the conditions seemed admirable for a growing and triumphant libertarianism.

    And to top it off, the Watergate crisis (my particular favorite) destroyed the trust of the American masses in the Presidency. For the first time in over a hundred years, the concept of impeachment of the President became, first thinkable, and then a living and glorious process. For a while, I feared that Jimmy Carter, with his lovable cardigan sweater, would restore Americans’ faith in their president, but soon that fear proved groundless.

    Surely, it is no accident that it was precisely in this glorious and sudden anti-government surge that libertarian ideas and libertarian scholarship began to spread rapidly in the United States. And it was in 1971 that the tiny Libertarian Party emerged, in 1972 that its first, embryonic presidential candidacy was launched, and 1973 when its first important race was run, for mayor of New York City. The Libertarian Party continued to grow rapidly, almost exponentially, during the 1970s, reaching a climax with the Clark campaign for governor of California during the Prop 13 year of 1978, and with the Clark campaign for the Presidency in 1980. The morning my first article on libertarianism appeared in the New York Times in 1971, a very bright editor at Macmillan, Tom Mandel, called me and asked me to write a book on the subject (it was to become For a New Liberty). Not a libertarian himself, Mandel told me that he believed that libertarianism would become a very important ideology in a few years – and he turned out to be right.

    So libertarianism was on a roll in the 1970s. And then Something Happened.

    Enter the Neocons

    What happened was Ronald Wilson Blithering Reagan. Obviously Reagan did not suddenly descend out of the clouds in 1980. He had been the cherished candidate of the conservative movement, its chosen route to power, ever since Goldwater’s defeat. Goldwater was too blunt and candid, too much an un-handleable Real Person. What was needed was a lovable, manipulable icon. Moreover, Goldwater’s principles were too hard-edged: he was way too much a domestic libertarian, and he was too much an eager warmonger. Both his libertarianism and his passion for nuclear confrontation with the Soviet Union scared the bejesus out of the American masses, as well as the more astute leadership of the conservative movement.

    A reconstituted conservative movement would have to drop any libertarian ideology or concrete policies, except to provide a woolly and comfortable mood for suitably gaseous anti-government rhetoric and an improved foreign policy that would make sure that many more billions would go into the military-industrial complex, to step up global pressure against Communism, but avoiding an actual nuclear war. This last point was important: As much as they enjoy the role of the bully, neither the Establishment nor the American people want to risk nuclear war, which might, after all, blow them up as well. Once again, Ronnie Reagan looked like the Answer.

    Two important new ingredients entered into, and helped reshape, the conservative movement during the mid 1970’s. One was the emergence of a small but vocal and politically powerful group of neo-conservatives (neocons), who were able, in a remarkably short time, to seize control of the think tanks, the opinion-molding institutions, and finally the politics, of the conservative movement. As ex-liberals, the neocons were greeted as important new converts from the enemy. More importantly, as ex-Trotskyites, the neocons were veteran politicos and organizers, schooled in Marxian cadre organizing and in manipulating the levers of power. They were shrewdly eager to place their own people in crucial opinion molding and money-raising positions, and in ousting those not willing to submit to the neocon program. Understanding the importance of financial support, the neocons knew how to sucker Old Right businessmen into giving them the monetary levers at their numerous foundations and think tanks.

    The only group willing and able to challenge the neocons on their own moralizing on philosophic turf was, of course, the tiny handful of libertarians; and outright moral libertarianism, with its opposition to statism, theocracy, and foreign war, could never hope to get to first base with conservative businessmen, who, even at the best of times during the Old Right era, had never been happy about individual personal liberty, (e.g. allowing prostitution, pornography, homosexuality, or drugs) or with the libertarians’ individualism and conspicuous lack of piety toward the Pentagon, or toward the precious symbol of the Nation-State, the US flag.

    The neocons were (and remain today) New Dealers, as they frankly describe themselves, remarkably without raising any conservative eyebrows. They are what used to be called, in more precise ideological days, “extreme right-wing Social Democrats.” In other words, they are still Roosevelt-Truman-Kennedy-Humphrey Democrats. Their objective, as they moved (partially) into the Republican Party and the conservative movement, was to reshape it to become, with minor changes, a Roosevelt-Truman-etc. movement; that is, a liberal movement shorn of the dread “L” word and of post-McGovern liberalism. To verify this point all we have to do is note how many times Roosevelt, Truman, Kennedy, et al., properly reviled by conservatives while they were alive, are now lauded, even canonized, by the current neocon-run movement, from Ronnie Reagan on down. And no one calls them on this Orwellian revision of conservative movement history.

    As statists-to-the-core the neocons had no problem taking the lead in crusades to restrict individual liberties, whether it be in the name of rooting out “subversives,” or of inculcating broadly religious (“Judeo-Christian”) or moral values. They were happy to form a cozy alliance with the Moral Majority, the mass of fundamentalists who entered the arena of conservative politics in the mid-1970s. The fundamentalists were goaded out of their quietist millenarian dreams (e.g., the imminent approach of Armageddon) and into conservative political action by the accumulation of moral permissivism in American life. The legalization of abortion in Roe v. Wade was undoubtedly the trigger, but this decision came on top of a cumulative effect of the sexual revolution, the militant homosexual movement “out of the closet” and into the streets, the spread of pornography, and the visible decay of the public school system. The entry of the Moral Majority transformed American politics, not the least by furnishing the elite cadre of neocons with a mass base to guide and manipulate.

    In economic matter, the neocons showed no more love of liberty, though this is obscured by the fact that the neocons wish to trim the welfare state of its post-Sixties excrescences, particularly since these were largely designed to aid black people. What the neocons want is a smaller, more “efficient” welfare state, within which bounds they would graciously allow the market to operate. The market is acceptable as a narrow instrumental device; their view of private property and the free market is essentially identical to Gorbachev’s in the Soviet Union.

    Why did the Right permit itself to be bamboozled by the neocons? Largely because the conservatives had been inexorably drifting Stateward in the same manner. In response to the crushing defeat of Goldwater, the Right had become ever less libertarian and less principled, and ever more attuned to the “responsibilities” and moderations of Power. It is a far cry from three decades ago when Bill Buckley used to say that he too is an “anarchist” but that we have to put off all thoughts of liberty until the “international Communist conspiracy” is crushed. Those old Chodorovian libertarian days are long gone, and so is National Review as any haven for libertarian ideas. War mongering, militarism, theocracy, and limited “free” markets – this is really what Buckleyism amounted to by the late 1970s.

    The Reagan candidacy of 1980 was brilliantly designed to weld a coalition providing the public’s instinctive anti-government mood with sweeping, but wholly nonspecific, libertarian rhetoric, as a convenient cover for the diametrically opposite policies designed to satisfy the savvy and politically effective members of that coalition: the neocons, the Buckleyite cons, the Moral Majority, the Rockefellers, the military-industrial complex, and the various Establishment special interests always clustering at the political trough.

    Intellectual Corruption

    In the face of the stark record, how were the Reaganites able to get away with it? Where did Ronnie get his thick coat of Teflon? Why was he able to follow statist policies and yet convince everyone, including many alleged libertarians, that he was successfully pursuing a “revolution” to get government off our backs?

    The essential answer was provided a century ago by Lysander Spooner. Why does the public obey the State, and go further to endorse statist policies that benefit the Power Elite at the public’s own expense? The answer, wrote Spooner, is that the State is supported by three powerful groups: knaves, who know what is going on and benefit from State rule; dupes, who are fooled into thinking that State rule is in their and everyone else’s interest; and cowards, who know the truth but are afraid to proclaim that the emperor has no clothes. I think we can refine Spooner’s analysis and merge the Knave and Coward categories; after all, the renegade sellout confronts the carrot and the stick: the carrot of wealth, cushy jobs, and prestige if he goes along with the Emperor; and the stick of scorn, exclusion from wealth, prestige, and jobs – and perhaps worse – if he fails to go along. The reason that Reagan got away with it – in addition to his aw-shucks “lovability” – is that various powerful groups were either duped or knave-cowardly corrupted into hailing his alleged triumphs and deep-sixing his evident failures.

    First, the powerful opinion-molding media. It is conventional wisdom that media people are biased in favor of liberalism, No doubt. But that is not important, because the media, especially elite media who have the most to lose, are also particularly subject to the knave/coward syndrome. If they pander to Reaganism, they get the approval of the deluded masses, their customers, and they get the much-sought-after access to the President and to other big-wigs in government. And access means scoops, carefully planted exclusive leaks, etc. Any sort of effective opposition to the President means, on the other hand, loss of access; the angering of Reagan-deluded masses; and also the angering of their bosses, the owners of the press and television, who are far more conservative than their journalist employees.

    One of Reagan’s most notable achievements was his emasculation of the liberal media because of his personal popularity with the masses. Note, for example, the wimpy media treatment of Iran-Contra as compared to their glorious attack on Watergate. If this is liberal media bias, then the liberals need to be saved from their friends.

    But we must not under weigh the importance of the traitorous role performed by quasi-libertarian intellectuals and free-market economists during the Reagan years. While their institutions were small and relatively weak, the power and consistency of libertarian thought had managed to bring them considerable prestige and political influence by 1980 – especially since they offered an attractive and consistent alternative to a statist system that was breaking down on all fronts.

    But talk about your Knaves! In the history of ideological movements, there have always been people willing to sell their souls and their principles. But never in history have so many sold out for so pitifully little. Hordes of libertarian and free-market intellectuals and activists rushed to Washington to whore after lousy little jobs, crummy little grants, and sporadic little conferences. It is bad enough to sell out; it is far worse to be a two-bit whore. And worst of all in this sickening spectacle were those who went into the tank without so much as a clear offer: betraying the values and principles of a lifetime in order to position themselves in hopes of being propositioned. And so they wriggled around the seats of power in Washington. The intellectual corruption spread rapidly, in proportion to the height and length of jobs in the Reagan Administration. Lifelong opponents of budget deficits remarkably began to weave sophisticated and absurd apologias, now that the great Reagan was piling them up, claiming, very much like the hated left-wing Keynesians of yore, that “deficits don’t matter.”

    Shorn of intellectual support, the half-formed libertarian instincts of the American masses remained content with Reaganite rhetoric, and the actual diametrically opposite policies got lost in the shuffle.

    Reagan’s Legacy


    Has the Reagan Administration done nothing good in its eight ghastly years on earth, you might ask? Yes, it has done one good thing; it has repealed the despotic 55-mile-per-hour highway speed limit. And that is it.

    It is generally agreed by political analysts that the ideological mood of the public, after eight years of Reaganism, is in support of economic liberalism (that is, an expanded welfare state), and social conservatism (that is, the suppression of civil liberties and the theocratic outlawing of immoral behavior). And, on foreign policy, of course, they stand for militaristic chauvinism. After eight years of Ronnie, the mood of the American masses is to expand the goodies of the welfare-warfare state (though not to increase taxes to pay for these goodies), to swagger abroad and be very tough with nations that can’t fight back, and to crack down on the liberties of groups they don’t like or whose values or culture they disagree with.

    It is a decidedly unlovely and unlibertarian wasteland, this picture of America 1989, and who do we have to thank for it? Several groups: the neocons who organized it; the vested interests and the Power Elite who run it; the libertarians and free marketeers who sold out for it; and above all, the universally beloved Ronald Wilson Reagan, Who Made It Possible.
    Entire long article here:
    http://www.ronpaulforums.com/newrepl...eply&p=6993626
    There is no spoon.

  30. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by Ender View Post
    Screeds..... you keep using that word- I do not think it means what you think it means.
    Screed: a long speech or piece of writing, typically one regarded as tedious.

    Seems like the definition fits like a glove.


    In Rothbard's world Pat Buchanan, David Duke, George Bush, Nikita Krushchev, Che Guevara are the good guys.

    Milton Friedman and Ronald Reagan are the bad guys.

    Anyone who does good in Rothbard's world is bad for not being sufficiently pure. Anyone who is terrible is good if he has the right enemies in Rothbard's eyes. He cheered the Soviet Premier responsible for the Cuban Missile Crisis because in Rothbard's words because he killed fewer people than Eisenhower, you know the guy who beat the Nazis.

    How sick in the head does someone have to be write this:

    It is a decidedly unlovely and unlibertarian wasteland, this picture of America 1989
    America was bordering on being a $#@!hole country in the 70s. Gas lines, inflation, Iranians walking all over the country. American business couldn't compete. Unions wrecking companies. Rusted out American automobiles that lasted 3 years getting killed by foreign imports. The stock market gained zero percent from the 1968 to 1980 while inflation was double digits. I don't know how someone could look backwards in 1989 and not be amazed at how much better than country was.
    Last edited by Krugminator2; 11-08-2020 at 08:51 PM.



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