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Peter Schiff for U.S. Senate

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For the first time in a long time, Connecticut voters will actually have a real choice when voting for their U.S. Senator. This past week, economist and financial advisor Peter Schiff announced his Republican candidacy for the Connecticut senate seat currently held by Democrat Chris Dodd. Barring any manipulations from the Republican establishment, Schiff’s entry into the race guarantees that important issues which are often ignored by establishment candidates will be addressed. Once addressed, Connecticut voters will come to the conclusion that Schiff is the only candidate capable of cleaning up the financial mess produced during Dodd’s 5 terms in the Senate.

“What America has succeeded in creating is not an economy impervious to shocks, but merely one which enables their consequences to be postponed to a later date.” – Peter Schiff

No politician of either party will admit this, but Peter Schiff is absolutely right. What has been built during Dodd’s close to thirty years in the Senate is an economic system that is prone to booms and busts due mostly to the easy money policies of the Federal Reserve. So, we have a boom in the dot com sector fueled by low interest rates and then the bottom falls out.  What does the Fed do?  It lowers rates to one percent to stimulate the economy. This in turn causes the next boom in housing. What does the Fed do again? You got it – lower rates practically to zero. Once recessions set in, the politicians turn to the central bank to pump in more money in to ease the pain. This approach has worked so far to delay the inevitable, but in the end all we will have is a huge national debt and a calamitous financial meltdown the proportions of which have never been seen in modern history.

It is issues like this that are ignored by the establishment candidates in our political contests. Another issue that Schiff is focused on, which the Washington establishment is ignoring, is the current reserve crisis at the Federal Housing Administration. Reserves at the agency have fallen to $30 billion while the total amount of mortgage debt insured by the agency has risen to over $1 trillion. Schiff asks correctly, “Didn’t we learn anything?” from the most recent crisis. How will the agency insure so much debt with so little reserves? Again, as long as the printing presses are rolling at the Fed, official Washington will sweep this bad news under the rug. But, Schiff has rightly pointed out that the day of reckoning will come when the dollar has lost so much of its value that foreigners will no longer buy our debt and our standard of living will be in the dumper.

America needs leaders with the integrity and intelligence of Peter Schiff. He was one of the very few people in America who predicted the current financial crisis as long ago as the early 2000s. Mocked and ridiculed by political pundits for his comments that the U.S. economy was being built on false notions of wealth his position has since been vindicated by falling asset prices in the housing and stock markets. Currently, his patriotism has come under attack for his belief that the current recession/depression is necessary to liquidate the bad economic decisions that were made during the government-induced boom of the last decade. He is the only candidate for the U.S. Senate in Connecticut who is telling the truth, regardless of the consequences, and standing against the establishment position that winning elections is more important than doing what’s right for the country.

When he is elected to the Senate, Schiff will fight for fiscal responsibility, sound money, and restoring the federal government to its constitutional limits. As the candidate who is tied to no special interests, including the Republican establishment, Schiff is uniquely qualified to propose and fight for policies that benefit all Americans, not just the large corporate bosses and big bankers. For the first time in a long time, Connecticut voters have an opportunity to bring real change to America.

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About Kenn Jacobine

  • Clavos

    Mr. Schiff sounds like an excellent candidate for the times, Kenn.

    I hope he wins.

  • http://handyfilm.blogspot.com handyguy

    If it weren’t for the work of the Federal Reserve during the last 12 months, the Great Recession might have been much worse. Rhetoric is cheap. Results are more meaningful. The obsession of Paultards with slamming the Fed at every opportunity is quite ludicrous.

    I’m no fan of Chris Dodd, but the association of Schiff with Ron Paul should be enough for the residents of Connecticut to look elsewhere for Dodd’s replacement.

  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle

    I wish Schiff would take clear positions on some issues, hell any issues, other than the economy. I think he’s a very appealing candidate on that issue, but he has no track record and hasn’t issued any position statements on anything else.

    Dave

  • wuastwais

    handyguy, you are right the fed has made it better than it would have been.

    After clinton’s tech stock bubble burst in 2001, the fed stepped in with cheap money and with the help of congress blew up the housing bubble to replace it. This is why the 2001 recession is the only one on record where new housing starts did not decline.

    Bernanke is simply doing what greenspan did in 2001, only on a larger scale. So we will feel less pain until we are faced with the next crash.

    If “to-big-to-fail” companies would have went under and the fed had raised interest rates, we would have had some pain in the short term.

    Instead we are going prop up failure, and pass the cost on to all dollar holders by devaluing the dollar through inflation.

    The boom is where the destruction is done to the economy, the recession is the cure that liquidates malinvestment made during the boom. Failure to allow this to happen is what made the great depression great.

    Also, do you know who owns the private federal reserve bank?

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    The big issue facing Americans (whether they want to admit this or not) is the issue of fiscal responsibility. Most other issues relating to the economy and to national security all are tied in intricately to fiscal responsibility. That is not a pleasant truth, but it is the truth. Almost all other issues, other than those relating to individual liberty, are all tied in one way to fiscal responsibility.

    Americans got rid of one nasty cross, racism, by being willing to elect a man perceived as a black man. But if the man they elected is not willing to try to figure out how to lead his nation to fiscal responsibility, Americans will be carrying an even nastier cross on their backs.

  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle

    Bernanke is simply doing what greenspan did in 2001, only on a larger scale. So we will feel less pain until we are faced with the next crash.

    Perhaps a policy which prevented further crashes would be somewhat more desirable.

    Also, do you know who owns the private federal reserve bank?

    Wait, wait. Let me guess. Is it the evil Joos?

    Dave

  • dx

    handyguy,

    the FEDS caused this mess. Schiff and Ron Paul see the feds for what they are: A private banking cartel that is illegal under the Constitution. This patchup job the Feds did for the past 12 months will only delay the inevitable: the crash of the dollar and U.S. economy.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    do you know who owns the private federal reserve bank?

    Wait, wait. Let me guess. Is it the evil Joos?

    Actually, as an accredited representative of the evil joos (check out http://www.eviljoos.com for the body parts of IDF soldiers wholesale!), I am authorized to tell you all that the evil joos do not own the US Federal Reserve. It’s the evil WASPS who own the US Federal Reserve and stick stupid ambitious joos up as managers, massaging their egos like phallic organs so that they THINK they own the Federal Reserve.

  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle

    dx, I’d love to see the part of the constitution which outlaws “private banking cartels” or any kind of private business operation.

    Dave

  • Kenn Jacobine

    Dave,

    “I wish Schiff would take clear positions on some issues, hell any issues, other than the economy.”

    Schiff is a libertarian, thus it is easy to know almost all of his position without him stating them. That is the beauty of libertarians – we are consistent. I am sure he is pro-choice, anti-drug war, for a non-interventionist foreign policy, pro gun rights, etc….

  • zingzing

    “That is the beauty of libertarians – we are consistent.”

    that had better not be true.

  • Baronius

    Rob Simmons has a much better chance of beating Chris Dodd. His record on defense may not win him any libertarian friends, but on social and fiscal issues they should find him acceptable. He’s also got a boatload of government experience, and he knows how to run a campaign.

    But it all comes down to whether or not the voters of Connecticut can walk away from Dodd.

  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle

    Schiff is a libertarian, thus it is easy to know almost all of his position without him stating them. That is the beauty of libertarians – we are consistent. I am sure he is pro-choice, anti-drug war, for a non-interventionist foreign policy, pro gun rights, etc….

    Sorry, Kenn. As a long time Libertarian and libertarian, I know that not to be true. Not only do LP members disagree on many issues, including foreign policy and aborition, but there are many who CALL themselves libertarians who you and I would not consider libertarians, including the venerable Dr. Ron Paul whose positions on many social issues are absolutely unlibertarian.

    Dave

  • waustwais

    Dave Nalle,
    First off the federal reserve is owned by international banking interests.

    Second, ron paul claims to be paleo-conservative, defending the constitution as a principaled stand. Personally, i have little faith in the document, as it cannot defend itself, but i understand that having a bill of rights at least allows us to defend ourselves somewhat.

  • Christian

    Dave Nalle,

    Article 1 Section 10 of the Constitution requires only gold and silver coin legal tender in payment of debts. That does NOT authorize a private central bank to create fiat money out of thin air.

    Schiff has taken a stance on the issues that are most important to America right now: fixing the economy, downsizing government, and cutting foreign spending. He wants to bring troops home from Afghanistan.

    handguy, the Federal Reserve caused the crises. And the recession has not ended. Rather, it WILL turn into a depression because of the combined actions of the Fed and the government. The stock bubble that the stimulus money created has not brought back the millions of job losses. You really should educate yourself on the damage the Federal Reserve has done to this country. Read “End the Fed” by Ron Paul and “Creature from Jekyll Island” by G. Edward Griffin. Also the second half of the film “Freedom to Fascism” by Aaron Russo will help educate you.

    handguy,

    By associating with someone who has actively and consistently fought for liberty, limited government, and sound money (Ron Paul), the residents of Connecticut should look somewhere else for Dodd’s replacement??

    Wuastwais,

    The Fed is not “owned” by anyone. Rather, it was created by the Rockefellers, Rothschilds, Morgans, Chases and Warburgs and is still controlled by elite bankers.

    Baronius,

    So Simmons has a boatload of government experience ruining the country, and for that he has a better chance of beating Schiff? Schiff’s advantage is that he has NO experience ruining the country.

    Schiff speaks the truth and has a stronger understanding of economics than all senators combined. Connecticut needs to elect him to the Senate to educate the other Senators that they are the problem. You guys should watch Peter’s accurate history of predictions and read his book “Crash Proof”. Peter is for the people. He wants to get in the Senate, fix the mess, then get out. He is NOT a self-serving politician.

  • bgodley

    handyguy,

    I have read quite a bit of the public relations statements that circulate regarding the Fed and their actions taken to reduce the effects of recession. Let’s try and analyze your point and see exactly how these financial titans have saved us from ruin.

    Let’s see, well….
    Maybe they produced a lot… No, actually they don’t produce anything. Maybe they improved manufacturing or created new technology… No, not that. Ok, they improved business models or helped with resource allocation. …uh, no again. Well, maybe they got the government to be more financially responsible… ha, no, definitely not that.

    Geez.. What did these guys do? … Let’s see, well, they provided banks and other institutions with liquidity… hmmm, liquidity, that sounds important, how did they do that? Well they either gave out a bunch of money or bought bad stuff for high prices. Well, did they have lots of money in the basement behind a door that is marked ONLY OPEN IN CASE OF EMERGENCY? Well, not exactly, no. So how do they hand out money especially to cover the governments high-rolling ways? If we analyze their balance sheet maybe we will get a clue.

    They have been buying a lot of bad US assets from foreign interests, especially foreign central banks who have been buying them direct with a lot of the money. So how does the money come back to the states? The foreign banks make a deal and purchase Treasury bonds. This gives money to the govt and helps prop up bad US assets. Well, that doesn’t sound bad. Yeah, but SOMEBODY must have paid the bill. Well that would be the US taxpayer. The citizens will eventually have to pay the govt debt back and in essence are propping up the increased spending, AND the buying up of toxic assets. You mean WE are actually paying for the whole mess. Not the Fed, not the banks, not the rich, not the executives of the bad institutions …. the bleepin’ US citizen? Yup, their ingenious plan is basically to indebt every man, woman and child in this country? Yeah, but wait, the deal gets better. So how exactly did the Fed get the money to buy the toxic assets in the first place? Maybe they just printed it. Actually printing is so passe’ in the computer age. They just added some zeroes in an account and there you are. So this private organization is in control of printing the money and not the government? Yes. But does printing or should I say digitizing money have any effect on an economy? You bet, it’s called killing your currency and creating hyper inflation. More money, same goods – money buys less. More money, same or less amount of production – things cost more inflation. So who pays then for the printing of the money? the US citizen through higher inflation. The stuff we buy gets more expensive to cover the extra dollars in circulation. You mean the US taxpayer has to bail out the govt, bail out the toxic assets, AND cover the cost of printing the money. YUP.

    So it appears that they are facilitating the bankruptcy of the country and are able to bail out bad companies and bad executives at the same time. But maybe your right. Maybe we shouldn’t concern ourselves.

    .. after all they saved us from a recession, right?

  • pablo

    Excellent post bgodley

  • waustwais

    Christian,
    If you like “controlled”, better than “owned”. I think controlled sounds more like the federal reserve is the victim, where owned is closer to true.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I happen to agree with bgodley’s assessment of the merits of the Fed.

  • Clavos

    I concur, Pablo.

  • Kenn Jacobine

    Dave,

    I am talking about little “l” libertarians. The LP is a mess and that is why I am no longer a member.

    Ron Paul is a libertarian – his social issues stands are consistent with libertarianism.

    Christian – You are absolutely right. Experience in government is the reason Simmons shouldn’t win. How is trading a Budweiser for a Bud Light any better – you still have bad beer. That is what we do in this country is trade a Dem for a Rep and then a Rep for a Dem. Both are bad candidates.

  • Baronius

    Bgodley is a little quick to write off the benefits of liquidity, as well as to use the term “hyperinflation”, but for this particular crisis the Fed’s actions were not helpful.

  • http://handyfilm.blogspot.com handyguy

    To Roger and Clavos, who chimed right in with the wingnuts concerning the Fed:
    I am simply aghast.

    Not that you have to agree with me, but to simply sign off on extremist, reductionist nonsense is something you’re both too smart for.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Handy,

    Speaking for myself, I’m not in the habit trying to ascertain first who the speaker is. I’m dealing with the message. And yes, I don’t have a great deal of confidence in the merits of the Federal Reserve Bank. In fact, I’m very skeptical of the history and the operations of this institution. But aside from that, really, I responded to the content, the message. And yes, it seemed more right-headed to me than not.

    And yes, for all the appearances to the contrary, trying to do good and fix our problems, I’m not all that certain that the Fed isn’t much more implicated in the reign of corruption that characterizes our financial institutions than meets the eye.

    But it sure talks a good game.

  • http://handyfilm.blogspot.com handyguy

    Roger, most economists would disagree with you, strictly in pragmatic, results-based terms, concerning the last 12 months.

    Not that the Fed is without flaws, or that Bernanke is a deity. But he has made some bold moves in this crisis that a great many people, who know more about the economy than you or I, believe saved us from a depression, a complete collapse, a catastrophe.

    Those who are ideologically opposed to the very existence of the Fed will of course disagree. I would never have guessed that you were a member of that generally very far-right group.

  • Kenn Jacobine

    handyguy,

    Are these the same economists that didn’t see the financial crisis coming in the first place? By the way, Schiff saw it coming by about 2002 and he would dispose of the Fed because he rightly understands that it was primarily Fed policy which caused the debacle.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I am not ideologically against it, Handy. Only said that I have reservations about it being a neutral player.

  • Christian

    hanguy,

    Those that oppose the Fed are 75% of Americans, which are not all far-right. This isn’t a political issue and Bernanke has not saved us from a depression. He has simply prolonged it, and postponed the ultimate collapse of the currency and economy.

    And “most economists” were completely wrong in seeing the prior economic downturn happen. So why listen to them now? Real economists like Peter Schiff, Jim Rogers, and Marc Faber understood the problems of the economy years ago and accurately predicted the last crises. And they are all equally predicting an even bigger one. That is why it’s even more crucial to elect Schiff and Rand Paul to the Senate. The existing Senators have no idea what they’re doing (other than serving themselves), and don’t understand how we got into this mess or how to get out of it.

  • Kenn Jacobine

    Christian,

    Thanks and welcome to the site. It is nice to get some help around here for a change.

    Kenn

  • Baronius

    Christian,

    “Schiff speaks the truth and has a stronger understanding of economics than all senators combined. Connecticut needs to elect him to the Senate to educate the other Senators that they are the problem.”

    Human nature just doesn’t work that way. Even people with little egos don’t want to be lectured by a newcomer. In the Senate, you have influence over one medium-sized thing (if your party is in power and you’re senior), one tiny thing (as a junior in power), or nothing (if you’re out of power). To reroute the Fed, much less dissolve it, you’d need to be a four-term senator in the majority party, and you’d need 5 years, a supportive president, and a grassroots movement behind you. I’d much rather see two good senators win than one perfect one.

  • Baronius

    Oops. I forgot to draw my conclusion, that a novel idea has a chance of gaining momentum in the House, but in the Senate, it’s all about numbers and compromise.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    Electing this Schiff fellow will not help you at all, just as electing McCain – or even Ron Paul to the White House – would have done no good at all….

    Sorry to tell you that, guys. I’m not trying to be mean or sarcastic – just honest.

  • http://handyfilm.blogspot.com handyguy

    Christian: Where do you get that ridiculous 75% figure, please?

    Kenn, your tunnel vision is defined by laughable statements such as:

    Schiff is a libertarian, thus it is easy to know almost all of his position without him stating them.

    Ron Paul is a libertarian – his social issues stands are consistent with libertarianism.

    Dr. Paul has a bit of biblical, judgmental Christianity mixed in with his libertarianism which leads to unfortunate stands on, for example, gay rights. [His woeful appearance in “Bruno” could thus be considered a brutal form of justice.]

    At any rate, neither Jacobine nor Christian seem to see any need for any idea not contained within their narrow world, defined entirely as it is by their worship of Dr. Paul.

    The fact that the Federal Reserve is such a bete noire to them is as good a reason as any to say, Long live the Fed.

    And Ben Bernanke is at least 50 times smarter than anyone commenting on this thread, including me. Writing him off because you oppose the institution he runs is just foolishness.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    “Ben Bernanke is at least 50 times smarter than anyone commenting on this thread.”

    Why would you want to say that, Handy. Because he has a degree in economics? Is that sufficient to make him smarter than you? I don’t know about you, but I don’t idolize people just because they have PhDs, and you shouldn’t either. Especially when it comes to economics which is hardly an exact science.

  • dave

    Here’s the deal handguy:

    Regarding your claim that “[Bernanke]..he has made some bold moves in this crisis that a great many people, who know more about the economy than you or I, believe saved us from a depression, a complete collapse, a catastrophe.” Firstly, you can’t claim to know that in fact Bernanke knows more than the person you are refering to. You may make an educated guess that this may be the case and base it on Bernanke’s credentials and prior experience but you can’t say for certain that Mr. Bernanke “knows” more about economics than Roger who as far as any of us know may be well read, and highly knowledgeable about the subject. It’s mroe likely that you have a preconceived notion of who “knows” more based on your prior experiences but those are not reliable when assessing a new situation. Here is some information dug up by the Huffington Post on how the Fed has a strangle hold on the economics profession, and how this may have negative effects on the reliability of the information and recommendations coming from those who are supposedly more capable and credible at dealing w/ our current economic situation.

    The above write-up also does a great job of discrediting the value of your claim that: “most economists would disagree with you, strictly in pragmatic, results-based terms, concerning the last 12 months.”

    Below is another note delivered as an address to the Swedish Academy by F.A. Hayek on the occasion of the acceptance of his winning the Nobel Prize for Economics in 1974. Reading this (lengthy) speech might also give you more of an idea why it might not be so good to place so much faith on “experts” of a subject which finds itself without the luxury of having the sufficient amount if discipline and predictive power of a true science like physics. It will also explain why most of the time these “pragmatic”, “results-based terms” you speak about can never be useful in their application of determining possible future events.

    Here is his banquet speech to the Royal Society where he outlines the dangers of placing too much faith on what the current “experts” have to offer as potential solutions to problems of their causing.

    Here you can see Ben Bernanke get it all wrong.

    And here you can see Peter Schiff get it all right… in the face of much skepticism (based mostly on ignorance).

    If you indeed go through all of the material I have here presented and focus your attention specifically on the content of what is said and not on extraneous factors, then you may be able to see where us Schiff supporters are coming from. Maybe.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    In effect, citing someone as “authority” without getting into the details of the argument is only slightly better than ad hominem (though not offensive in form) But types of “argument,” however, are not arguments at all.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I’m not going to hold a candle to Bernanke in economics, Dave, but I’ll still say we have to use our own faculties to judge the subject matter to the extent possible rather than simply fall on “the authority” argument. It remind one of the old turn of phrase, “the scientists say . . .”

    (It’s not possible for a non-scientist to discuss issues in theoretical physics, but economics has a long way to go before it reaches that level of precision and rigor.)

    In any case, you’re quite right in that we’re all too beholden these days on the opinions of so-called “experts” and tend to regard these opinions as incontrovertible.

  • dave

    Right Roger, my point to handguy was that there’s no real way for him to know whether or not you know more than Bernanke (Regardless of whether in fact you do or don’t know more) based on the information he has about what Bernanke knows and what you know. Firstly whatever his judgment is on Bernanke’s level of expertise, it’s only an estimate based on the “educated” guess of someone whose own level of competence in Economics is not even known. Maybe handy does know more about economics than you, me and Bernanke (although based on what I’ve read from him so far I’d have to make an educated guess to the contrary of such a claim), and if he did, and new how to asses Bernanke’s expertise then it would be relevant. But again, based on what I know of the situation, it seems to me like handy doesn’t know much about Bernanke except on a superficial/shallow/third hand level. He doesn’t know anything about you so there’s know way he can know your knowledge content until you mention it like you did (and even that may be a lie), and he’s just an arrogant kid who tries to sound intelligent but should be more careful because his claims might backfire. Unless he has no shame, then he will continue to arrogantly and stubbornly push his (what I consider) flawed points of view.

    With regards to physics. Economics is far far faaaaaaaar away from getting to that level of accuracy and determinism. It definitely won’t happen within our lifetime, if it happens at all. Economic scenarios do not lend themselves too well to mathematical modeling. Economics is more like biology than physics. In order to describe the simple actions of a unicellular organism (protozoa, bacteria, amoeba etc) in terms of an actual mathematical model capable of handling all calculations relating to every lateral and resonant motion of the cell’s constituent molecules, their momentum, their kinetic energies etc…in terms of the most basic logic of quantum mechanics would require the assistance of some super computer not yet conceived and far far out into the future. It’s very likely that such a computer capable of handling every variable and degree of freedom (observable etc.) won’t be available for many hundreds of years. This has nothing to do with any apperant pessimism I may have with technology, because I don’t; it has everything to do with what we know about the differences that exist in the process of attacking and solving the problems we face in physics and those faced in biology and economics. We should be aware of our own limits.

    (handy that last sentence applies to you as well).

  • Kenn Jacobine

    handyguy,

    If independent thinking is tunnel vision then I am guilty as charged. You on the otherhand have been totally socialized by the MSM and Washington punditry. I am a libertarian. My views are consistent compared to Repubs and Dems. I stand for freedom and individual choice on every issue. They pick and choose what they personally like and don’t like. For instance, most Dems are pro-choice yet anti-gun freedom while Repubs would argue the direct opposite. Libertarians oppose the Fed because it is anti-free market. Repubs and Dems tolerate the Fed or support it at worst. Repubs in particular like the Fed but hate taxes as anti-free market. There is so much crap that is spewed by the pundits and media types that most Americans have lost track of what free markets are and how they are superior to any other socialized fascistic system out there.

    Schiff’s rhetoric and training is libertarian. Therefore, I know where he will come down on every issue – consistently for free markets and individual choice. Simmons on the other hand will waver and be for a little of this and a little of that all to satisfy his benefactors (contributors and the party big wigs).

    As to Dr. Paul, it is pathetic that you bring up the Bruno incident. Perhaps, if you put your tunnel vision aside for a moment and consulted some independent news outlets for your information once and a while you would know that Paul was tricked into thinking that he was being interviewed on Austrian Economics. When the guy dropped his pants in the bedroom scene he had every right to react the way he did. Have you thought that he would have reacted the same way if it were a women? The difference between libertarians and non-libertarians is that we may be personnally against homosexual behavior but we still believe that we have no right to legally impose our view on others. Dr. Paul stated that in a recent interview. Libertarians don’t have to be PC just for freedom.

  • zingzing

    “If independent thinking is tunnel vision then I am guilty as charged.”

    now if that ain’t a pat on the back…

    kenn, you view things very simply: you “stand for freedom and individual choice on every issue.” now, as admirable as that may sound, it also doesn’t come close to grasping the political reality of the world.

    you say you stand for the free market, yet if you really do, you’d have us in the same condition that existed before the great depression. unregulated markets leads to vast corruption and a teetering economy. a minimum amount of regulation is necessary, i say. unless you believe that every human is good and honest…

    and what’s your stand on the death penalty? looks like libertarians are divided on the subject, yet you say it should be obvious. what gives?

    there are a host of other problems with the supposed simplicity of your worldview. either you’re ignoring complexities, or you’re not being honest.

  • Kenn Jacobine

    Zingzing,

    The Great Depression happened during an era of heavy financial regulation. We had just come through the so-called Progressive Era and the Fed was born in 1913. These things were supposed to prevent big downturns from happening. In the 1920s Benjamin Strong (NY Fed chair) inflated the dollar on numerous occasions. First, he did it to alleviate downturns in the economy. Secondly, he did it to help his colleague at the UK central bank because there was a run on British gold thanks to lacks monetary policy there.

    The inevitable bust came really in about 1932 (25% unemployment). It came because of Hoover’s stimulus spending and public works projects. It lasted for 15 years because Uncle Sam wouldn’t let the economy cleanse itself of all the mal-investment caused by Fed policy in the 20s.

    This is exactly what has happened today. We are probably in the 1930-1931 brief reprieve period to be followed by the 1932 massive downturn.

    To blame our current economic downturn simply on deregulation is intellectually lazy and precisely what Washington is counting on to usurp more power from the people. Americans need to read more books on banking and the Fed to understand the root causes of our economic problems.

    In terms of the death penalty, whether someone should be put up to death is not really a question of freedom but punishment. Libertarians can disagree on this issue without bastardizing their freedom position.

  • Baronius

    Kenn, I’m not used to siding with Zing, but it’s reasonable to ask where candidates stand on a host of issues. As you point out, there are issues other than what you call the “freedom position”.

    A person can be a purist libertarian and be pro-life, believing that the libertarian principle of not harming another person extends to the unborn. Purist libertarians can disagree about whether a particular military intervention is absolutely necessary for national security. Purist libertarians famously can disagree on what constitutes child abuse, and what to do about it. About the only thing libertarians will agree upon is helmet laws.

    And let’s be honest, there aren’t many absolute pure libertarians out there. There are a good number of Wall Street analysts, think tank populists, and midnight tokers who lean libertarian but couldn’t quite bring themselves to sell Yellowstone Park to Disney.

  • zingzing

    kenn: “In terms of the death penalty, whether someone should be put up to death is not really a question of freedom but punishment. Libertarians can disagree on this issue without bastardizing their freedom position.”

    so you don’t believe in the gov’t taking away freedoms, but you’ll excuse the freedom to breath? (not that we do that voluntarily.) i would think that it would be absolutely against “libertarian” principle to have the gov’t killing people.

  • zingzing

    as for your economic theory, i’m going to advance the theory that without any regulation, we would have reached great depression-era craziness long before. when an economy begins to boom, someone is going to take advantage. that’s why we have crashes. it’s happened before, and it’ll happen again. with some regulation, we can make the swing less violent. especially when our economy is based on numbers on paper instead of anything real.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    Kenn, Christian,

    Mr. Schiff is a fellow I respect a great deal. It would be nice to see him in the US Senate – if it would do any good. The problem is that it won’t. Assuming that he has the best of intentions, he will be nothing more than a gadfly in the flanks of an administration that will look more and more to emergency measures (and more and more to dictatorship) to solve the crises that will begin to overwhelm the American economy.

    As for zing’s argument, it can be dismissed out of hand. But the argument that one can spend one’s way or regulate one’s way out of an economic crisis is equally untenable. The only way to get out of the economic toilet America is in is to produce its way out. And there is no productive capacity. And if there were, don’t you think that foreign creditors would grab ownership of it in place of worthless greenbacks?

    THAT is the big difference between the economic situation that America faces today as opposed to 1930-33. Then, America was a creditor nation, owing nobody. Then America had tremedouis productive capacity, even if it was under-used or under capitalized. Today, America has enormous “wealth” that is about to disappear – because America owes everybody, on every side, and the creditors are also the producers in the world; America is the consumer who has just consumed too damned much; that is not a tenable situation. America is about to go on a very unpleasant diet.

    The hard and bitter truth is that you guys are beyond saving. In that situation, a trends forecaster like Schiff should stay in his business; he won’t have solutions unless given lots of executive power – and even then he may not have solutions.

  • Kenn Jacobine

    Ruvy,

    You are absolutely right – America is beyond saving and a complete collapse will happen and prove that fiat money, central banking, and regulation by government for favored companies and industries once and for all does not work. It would be nice if Schiff and his ilk are in DC to pick up the pieces afterwards.

  • Kenn Jacobine

    Zing,

    It is o.k. to kill in self-defense. That is why we are so pro – 2nd Amendment. If America is attacked – kill in self-defense. You could argue that capital punishment is society’s way of defending itself and therefore o.k.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    Kenn, I’m not used to siding with Zing, but it’s reasonable to ask where candidates stand on a host of issues. As you point out, there are issues other than what you call the “freedom position”.

    Baronius, Schiff’s issue is the economy and the damage the Federal Reserve has done it. He really has no other issue, because in his mind, all the other issues are more or less irrelevant. He doesn’t say that in so many words; but when asked about foreign policy, he stated that the main job of the US government was defense, but that the government was broke – and then steered the interview back to the Federal Reserve.

    The problem is not that Schiff is wrong. He is more or less right. The problem is that even if you gave Schiff dictatorial power and he abolished the Federal Reserve, then what? How does he provide money to spend if every single Federal Reserve note is worthless? What backs up whatever Schiff proposes to use for money? Gold? Silver? How does he keep foreign nations from poaching on America if he can’t pay for the ammo to shoot the enemy? How does he pay for federal judges, ambassadors, marshalls, park rangers, etc. etc.? And how does he propose to pay Social Security checks to the oldsters who are relying on them?

    So far, once he shoots his magic bullet – dismantling the Fed – his gun is empty. So, he doesn’t really have any other positions. Mind you, this is a guy I respect. The idiots who think they can print their way out of the mess you are in, Republican and Democrat both, are playing with illusions – and they may not realize it at all. Why are you wasting your time debating “health care reform”? Your money will be worth toilet paper – that’s going to pay for hospitializations?

    Think about it….

  • Clavos

    Why are you wasting your time debating “health care reform”? Your money will be worth toilet paper – that’s going to pay for hospitalizations?

    Quoted for Truth.

    Unfortunately.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    hospitializations?…hospitalizations?

    Thanks for fixing my less than stellar typing, Clavos. Notice I said typing – I know to spell. My tyoubnt is miserable.

  • zingzing

    kenn: “You could argue that capital punishment is society’s way of defending itself and therefore o.k.”

    capital punishment as self defense… you strap a guy to a table and load him up with chemicals… something not working out for me there.

    see, that right there is a problem in your “philosophy.” you put it down to a simple “stand for freedom and individual choice on every issue” and then you get asked a question and all sorts of cracks begin to show. you have to wander around the question and find some way to make it seem to fit in with your beliefs. but your beliefs aren’t as cut and dry as you say. the only reason you can put your beliefs in such a small nutshell statement is because that statement is meaningless.

    so if you “stand for freedom and individual choice on every issue,” how about this issue:

    criminal: “i wish to live.”
    state: “no.”

    how does that fit in at all with “individual choice?” even in the slightest. it doesn’t. the fact is that you do not “stand for freedom and individual choice on every issue.” you just say you do.

    this isn’t an attack at all. it’s just pointing out that your philosophy, and those of other libertarians, are not as simple, or as similar, as you say.

  • Clavos

    An outlaw, by definition, has chosen to act outside the law, and thus, depending on the severity of the crime, loses some or most rights as a necessary adjunct to enforcing society’s established mores.

    Shouldn’t a criminal be deprived of his rights as a necessary element of his punishment and in proportion to his crime?

    Take a life, lose yours; speed in your car, pay a fine.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I agree with you in spirit, zing, and perhaps I don’t condone capital punishment. (I don’t know about some crimes, like against children.) But it stands to reason that some offenders should forfeit their rights (if only for the time being).

  • zingzing

    clavos: “An outlaw, by definition, has chosen to act outside the law, and thus, depending on the severity of the crime, loses some or most rights as a necessary adjunct to enforcing society’s established mores.”

    that still doesn’t fit inside kenn’s nutshell.

    “Shouldn’t a criminal be deprived of his rights as a necessary element of his punishment and in proportion to his crime?”

    some rights, sure. but life? no.

    roger: “But it stands to reason that some offenders should forfeit their rights (if only for the time being).”

    there’s something very permanent about death.

  • Clavos

    there’s something very permanent about death.

    As the family of any murder victim knows painfully well…

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    But I wasn’t talking about death.

  • zingzing

    roger: “But I wasn’t talking about death.”

    but i was.

    clavos: “As the family of any murder victim knows painfully well…”

    point, but that still doesn’t fit capital punishment into the nutshell.

  • Clavos

    …but that still doesn’t fit capital punishment into the nutshell.

    It does if you accept that by committing the capital crime, the criminal has forfeited a place in the nutshell; which obviously, I do, and which I think is just and fair.

  • http://thingsalongtheway.blogspot.com/ Cindy

    I didn’t write The Law. I look around at Society and it doesn’t escape me that a few people, who I think are pretty much wackos, did.

    Not sure why ‘Libertarians’ insist that freedom and liberty includes forcing people to obey arbitrary laws.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    There you go, Cindy.

    Now use Foucault’s idea of “law” as an instrument of repression, and you’ll have made a giant leap.

  • Clavos

    Something about order in society?

  • zingzing

    “It does if you accept that by committing the capital crime, the criminal has forfeited a place in the nutshell; which obviously, I do, and which I think is just and fair.”

    there is nothing outside of the nutshell. that’s my point. there’s no room for the complexities of reality. i’m not, at this point, arguing for or against capital punishment. i’m arguing that kenn’s definition is meaningless, because he isn’t even defined by it. it’s just false.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    And BTW, they’re far from arbitrary. The purpose is to maintain status quo and order. Not to mention, to justify the existing power relations.

  • Clavos

    And while I won’t dispute that in our society, some laws are indeed “arbitrary” (decidedly not a good thing), the vast majority are there because they have been shown (for centuries in some cases) to work to help maintain order.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    “there’s no room for the complexities of reality.”

    Now, I agree with you there. It’s simplistic.

  • Clavos

    Since it is Kenn’s “nutshell,” I defer to him in re the question of whether or not there’s an “outside” area.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    No one denies that’s the main function. But the idea of order they’re designed to maintain does serve certain interests better than others.

    Consequently, unless the idea of order – any kind of order – is accepted as the greatest good in a “civil society” – than any particular kind of order is open to question.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Well, then. So the ball is in Kenn’s corner now.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    But there’s one thing you’ve manage to do, zing: strike at the heart of the matter. For whatever Kenn’s views on any variety of such diverse subjects as the banking system or capital punishment – what else have you – they all spring from his conception of liberty and freedom.

  • zingzing

    clavos: “Since it is Kenn’s “nutshell,” I defer to him in re the question of whether or not there’s an “outside” area.”

    if he says there isn’t, then he’s not telling the truth, because there obviously is.

    and if he says there is, which there is, then he’s not telling the truth either.

    either way, the idea that his philosophy is contained within those simple words is proven false. you can’t support “individual choice” in EVERY situation, and then believe that the state has a right to kill its citizens.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    you can’t support “individual choice” in EVERY situation, and then believe that the state has a right to kill its citizens

    An anarchist might support individual choice in EVERY situation. That does not mean that a libertarian need do so. But, in the end I must defer to Kenn for his definitions. I’m just giving him a ladder out of zing’s little “gotcha” deal.

    Slick, zing. Slick….

  • zingzing

    i’m just trying to get kenn to admit that his definition is flawed. and then, by being truthful about what he actually believes, he’s going to reveal that his self-definitions is as filled with contradictions and outright ridiculousness as the rest of ours are.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    You don’t have to draw such a sharp contrast, zing. In a sense, it detracts from your argument because the matter of capital punishment is a touchy issue, one that for many people may be emotionally loaded.

    Why not say that any law – even a “good one” – is an instrument of repression.

    Now, that’s an even more radical thesis, I submit, and I think one can argue it successfully.

  • zingzing

    roger: “You don’t have to draw such a sharp contrast, zing. In a sense, it detracts from your argument because the matter of capital punishment is a touchy issue, one that for many people may be emotionally loaded.”

    that’s kind of the point. i draw a sharp contrast to point out that it’s easy to find holes. and i used capital punishment precisely because it brings up emotion, which is just one of the complexities of reality that make his definition impossible to uphold.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    In that case, I understand your strategy. Well taken, for the emotions cover a multitude of sins.

    In that case, I was only saying that you can make your argument much more extensive than that.

  • zingzing

    just keeping it simple.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Right,

    But they may argue on behalf of capital punishment for such as Hitler or Eichmann. Or a brutal serial killer.

    So what would you say?

  • http://thingsalongtheway.blogspot.com/ Cindy

    And BTW, they’re far from arbitrary. The purpose is to maintain status quo and order. Not to mention, to justify the existing power relations.

    Agreed. From the point of origin they are not arbitrary. I was trying to appeal to the impact on the individual who might share some experience of them being arbitrary as the laws impact her/him.

    So, the law that I cannot have a shed on my property unless it is permitted and in compliance is not an arbitrary law. It has a purpose or purposes. But my experience of its imposition on me is the sense that it is arbitrary, without any reference to what I am doing or needing or whether my having a shed will have any impact on anyone else.

  • zingzing

    there isn’t an individual that you could bring up who’s “individual choice” wouldn’t be violated by our gov’t if the gov’t killed them.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Of course they’re arbitrary from the standpoint of the individual. But I was attacking Clavos’s position.

  • http://thingsalongtheway.blogspot.com/ Cindy

    Clavos,

    Something about order in society?

    Order created by wackos, is far from reassuring.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I see your point. It’s a very extreme one. On purpose?

    But under the circumstances, doesn’t the idea of “individual choice” – held as an inviolable and absolute standard – becomes, if not absurd, then somewhat devoid of meaning?

    Because if that’s the point you’re bringing on to Kenn, than you’re forcing him to redefine his concept(s).

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Again, if that’s your strategy, then I concur. It’s called “reductio ad absurdum.”

    Very good, zing. I’ll have to take you (more) seriously.

  • Kenn Jacobine

    My political philosophy is simple and every real libertarian has the same: you have the right to do whatever you wish as long as you don’t violate someone else’s right to do the same. Thus, if I murder another person I have violated that person’s right to his/her life. If I know ahead of time that the penalty is death (that would be my position on murder) then I should lose my life. There is a misconception that libertarians are for any kind of behavior without consequences. Libertarians value freedom with responsibility and when that responsibility is violated the consequence should be measured but firm. That is my nutshell.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Except they’re far from wackos. It’s the powers that be.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    There you go, zing. Kenn climbd up the ladder of defining his nutshell as behavior that does not harm another. And for him there is a state that keeps order by punishing those who harm others. He is a libertarian – not an anarchist.

    You might want to honey up that venus’ fly trap somewhere else….

  • http://thingsalongtheway.blogspot.com/ Cindy

    The powers that be are wackos that’s why they are the powers that be.

    (Notice I didn’t say ‘stupid’, I’m implying ‘metal illness’.)

  • Clavos

    Order created by wackos, is far from reassuring.

    Unquestionably. I’m glad I don’t live in a country (N. Korea comes to mind) where that is the case.

  • Baronius

    Ruvy, that’s a valid point. Even if Schiff were crowned king, he’s got a lot to do in order to close down government. Someone has to sell off the schools, negotiate us out of treaties, review the civil and criminal codes for un-libertarian laws, and find $8 trillion to pay off our debt.

    (What? $12 trillion? Really?)

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I get your meaning, Cindy.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Well, the difference is that here they’re screwing you softly, with kindness.

  • http://thingsalongtheway.blogspot.com/ Cindy

    Kenn climbed up the ladder of defining his nutshell as behavior that does not harm another. And for him there is a state that keeps order by punishing those who harm others. He is a libertarian – not an anarchist.

    An anarchist is only a kind of libertarian who understands, for one, that the state is the chief agent of harm to others.

  • zingzing

    ruvy: “There you go, zing. Kenn climbd up the ladder of defining his nutshell as behavior that does not harm another. And for him there is a state that keeps order by punishing those who harm others. He is a libertarian – not an anarchist.”

    that strikes me as the oldie-but-goodie “do what thou wilt, but harm no other,” or any such other phrase. i’m not sure that makes you a libertarian, but, depending on how you put it, it does make you a wiccan, pagan or satanist. if that is “the whole of the law.”

    but, taken as ken means it, it does add a layer of complexity to the idea, and a place for government. now how he takes what is generally an anti-gov’t idea and transforms it into an excuse for the necessity of gov’t is miraculous indeed. but it is what it is.

    still, “do what thou wilt, etc, etc,” is very different from “I stand for freedom and individual choice on every issue.” even in presupposing that ken isn’t an anarchist (which i never did–he’s obviously not), and with kenn’s fantasy of gov’t solely existing to punish, what kenn is now saying has a lot more room for reality.

    “You might want to honey up that venus’ fly trap somewhere else….”

    i dunno what you’re talking about. half the time, i think you just disagree with me because i said it. i’d bet you that i could come on here under a different name and have you kissing up to the same ideas. and if you were to direct me to go anywhere, i’m pretty sure i’d end up in a bad place.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    That’s your definition, Cindy. That’s cool. It is not always the truth, but the nice thing about politics is that you get to define things the way you want to. It’s a lawyer’s stock in trade, and a good ability to be able to use.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Which goes without saying that Kenn is getting royally screwed.

    And now, take your pick:

    a) either likes
    or
    b) doesn’t know about (because he’s in deep sleep)

  • http://thingsalongtheway.blogspot.com/ Cindy

    That’s your definition, Cindy. It is not always the truth, but the nice thing about politics is that you get to define things the way you want to.

    An example of what you mean might help.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    i dunno what you’re talking about. half the time i think you just disagree with me because i said it.

    I don’t really care, zing. I’m a syndicalist socialist, not a libertarian, so the whole thing really doesn’t matter to me that much. But there seemed to be an awful lot of jawing about nothing going on and I thought to suggest something to Kenn that would end the jawing.

    I thought I had succeeded….

  • zingzing

    never! because now kenn simply draws a line in the sand with all the people running around doing whatever they please and the government hanging overhead waiting to strike down anyone who crosses the line.

  • zingzing

    but at least that idea is POSSIBLE in a world with more than one person in it, unlike his “freedom and individual choice on every issue.”

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    Cindy,

    Read comment #95, and comment #97. Both comments are talking about the same thing, Kenn’s argument, and defining them differently..

  • http://thingsalongtheway.blogspot.com/ Cindy

    It’s the institution of govt that sets up the culture as adversarial to begin with. It then ‘educates’ people in the ways of being adversarial. Until, deluded, they think it’s just a natural way to be and never question their reliance on govt.

    Govt murders people all the time. People’s bodies but also people’s minds. I’m surprised ‘Libertarians’, who support individual rights to freedom, don’t mind never having been given the opportunity to think for themselves.

    It’s why such ideology doesn’t have just that one hole that zing punched in it, but it’s riddled with holes.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    never! because now kenn simply draws a line in the sand….

    Zing, you remind me of the Russians in Israel and the way they argue. They never shut up! You can spend a half a month’s phone bill trying to get them off the damned phone, and they go on and on and on….

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    “kenn simply draws a line in the sand with all the people running around doing whatever they please and the government hanging overhead waiting to strike down anyone who crosses the line.”

    So far, that’s the mental image I get.

    You say, “much room for reality,” zing?

    It still looks to me like a one-dimensional universe.

  • zingzing

    ruvy: “Zing, you remind me of the Russians in Israel and the way they argue. They never shut up! You can spend a half a month’s phone bill trying to get them off the damned phone, and they go on and on and on….”

    keep talking, ruvy.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    Sorry, Cindy. I have to get up at 05:15 tomorrow morning and catch the early bus to Jerusalem, so I don’t have time to chat over this with you. Another time, perhaps. I have to get to bed. Even old ugly syndicalist socialists like me need their beauty sleep.

  • zingzing

    roger: “It still looks to me like a one-dimensional universe.”

    one dimension is better than none.

  • Kenn Jacobine

    This is all quite simple: you have a right to do what you choose as long as you do not violate another’s ability to do the same. If you violate that ability then there are consequences you must pay. Therefore you have a choice to violate another’s right or not based on whether it is worth it to you. I think the whole thing is quite libertine – and air tight if i should say so myself.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Actually, Kenn’s picture conjures up funny images.

  • zingzing

    “Even old ugly syndicalist socialists like me need their beauty sleep.”

    syndicalist socialism won’t work.

  • zingzing

    kenn: “If you violate that ability then there are consequences you must pay.”

    so that’s the one and only role of the government, right?

  • Kenn Jacobine

    Zing,

    No, the role of the government is defined by the Constitution.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    That is what I’m most suspicious of – when people try to sell me on a simple picture.

    In my limited experience, it’s anything but. And furthermore, it takes a genius to be able to communicate what’s complex, and to present it as simple.

    Einstein was one and E= Mc2 is an example. But I wasn’t aware that that our humble little site is a breeding ground for ground-breaking political philosopher.

    College de France and Sorbonne. Please close your doors and pay closer attention. It’s all happening in here. And it’s free of charge.

  • zingzing

    uh oh… things are going to get messy if you start going down that path.

  • zingzing

    doh. 113 was for 111. kenn’s philosophy expands yet again… so now we have “do what you will, but harm no others” (satanism) and a punishing, constitutional government.

  • Mark

    On the issues of State involvement in the economy and social policy ‘realistic’ Libertarians always seem to end up ‘a little bit pregnant’. See, for example, this analysis of Hayek’s position (pdf).

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Just a touch of irony, zing, to lighten the mood. But see, there comes Mark to save this thread from oblivion.

  • http://thingsalongtheway.blogspot.com/ Cindy

    Unquestionably. I’m glad I don’t live in a country (N. Korea comes to mind) where that is the case.

    So, you prefer the kingdom where the ‘king’ isn’t as mean, where indoctrination (force) of ideas are used instead of brutal force.

    I prefer not having my mind warped in the service of someone else. I am not convinced (and never have been) that this ‘game’ is as good as it’s claimed to be. I see it as producing mass quantities of mental unwellness.

    Criminals, as far as I can see, are more or less products of the system which claims itself to be our savior against them.

  • http://thingsalongtheway.blogspot.com/ Cindy

    our savior from? them? (I think that would be better.)

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    There is another point. In a dictatorship, such as N. Korea, you pretty much know what you’re up against. But in the benign liberal democracies, the whole masses of people are being sedated and put to sleep.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    It’s also a means of splitting the proletariat, Cindy, dividing it against itself. Because now the criminals are the bad guys and the government protects everybody from them. (Foucault)

    Which isn’t to say that his conception of “the criminal” wasn’t broader than indicated above.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Looks like a good article, Mark. And only twenty pages. Still, I have to take my time.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Cindy,

    You should put it on your reading list, too.

  • Baronius

    “all the people running around doing whatever they please and the government hanging overhead waiting to strike down anyone who crosses the line.”

    Well…yeah, pretty much that’s what I want too.

  • http://thingsalongtheway.blogspot.com/ Cindy

    107 –

    This is all quite simple: you have a right to do what you choose as long as you do not violate another’s ability to do the same. If you violate that ability then there are consequences you must pay. Therefore you have a choice to violate another’s right or not based on whether it is worth it to you. I think the whole thing is quite libertine – and air tight if i should say so myself.

    But the govt violates my rights all the time. The existence of rules that I never agreed to, yet have to follow, preempts my right to live the way I want. Laws that claim people own land, violate my right as a person born on this planet to enjoy it and use it for food.

  • Clavos

    I understand what you’re saying, Cindy (117), and perhaps you’re right, though I don’t think so.

    This system ain’t perfect, admittedly, but I’ve looked around and haven’t found what I (as opposed to you or someone else) consider to be better.

  • Clavos

    Oh, and I don’t think I’m being warped or deluded, by the government or anyone else but since I’m content, it doesn’t matter to me whether I am or not.

  • http://thingsalongtheway.blogspot.com/ Cindy

    120 –

    I think that’s a good point.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Guess what? You’ve made me think that we’re dispossessed, and so I figured there must be a book so titled. And indeed, there is.

    In fact, there is another.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    #126,

    But so were all the denizens of the Matrix.

  • Clavos

    And it doesn’t matter, Roger.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    “Don’t worry, be happy!”

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