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Posts Tagged ‘Millennials’

My Corner by Boyd Cathey – The Philosophy of Progress is Killing Us

Posted by M. C. on October 7, 2020

The progressivist Left goes much further. Indeed, the same demands for equality, and expanded and newly-discovered “rights,” in the slogans and proposals of Leftists often become props in an overpowering effort, not as much for desired “social justice,” but more for the acquisition of power: a means to an end, the control of society and its structures.

http://boydcatheyreviewofbooks.blogspot.com/

Friends,

Over the past few years I have written about what I term a “triumph of lunacy” in our society—most significantly on our college campuses and in our schools, in our entertainment, in the media, but also in our culture generally. The post-Marxist progressivist Left, after the apparent political set-back of the 2016 elections, has redoubled its efforts with a frenzied fanaticism unknown in our history, at least since a few years before the War Between the States.

What distinguishes our revolutionary period from previous upheavals is that today’s revolutionaries have, in effect, created a “counter-reality” in which they base their thought and actions. That reality they have manufactured out of a critical misapprehension of the nature of creation and the nature of mankind. That counter-reality is totally subjective, anchored in fractured internal thinking processes which have been infected and warped from their inception. That counter-reality is the inverse of the two-millennia of Western civilization; it possesses its own language, its own precepts, its own rules of conduct, its own goals and objectives, undeterred by the inexorable laws of nature or the historic teachings of the Christian faith. Indeed, it is the contrary of historic Christianity.

In a very substantial sense the raging post-Marxist Left and its nostrums are grounded in the “idea of progress,” a broad conceptual movement in history that dates back several centuries, at least to the Enlightenment of the 18th century, but which achieved a large degree of intellectual triumph in society in the 19th, most especially with the social theories of Auguste Comte, Herbert Spencer, and others. The late conservative philosopher, Robert Nisbet, wrote comprehensively about it in his volume, The History of the Idea of Progress. It posits that history is a process materially leading to the improvement and refinement of our technological and scientific environment, and, philosophically, leading to more “individual freedom” and the abolition of what are considered hindrances to that expanding freedom and what are perceived to be any obstacles to the irreversible expansion of “rights” and “equality”—which become over time almost inexhaustible and unlimited. Nothing can stand against the ideas that proponents of progress propound. If you do, you are a hopeless reactionary, a bigot, old-fashioned, and probably a racist and a misogynist.

Of course, material progress is observable, constant, and measurable, and is to be welcomed generally. Going from oil lamps to electric lights, or from horse-and-buggies to automobiles is seen positively by most everyone. There are, certainly, a few negatives in such progress (e.g., damage to the environment, altered living patterns, etc.), but most of those negatives are outweighed by the positives and the material enhancement of civilization.

The real problem comes when the “idea of progress” is made the benchmark for intellectual thought and how political and social goals are presented and achieved under its banner. For it then becomes, depending on how it is defined, the vehicle for ideologies that use it to shape and push their agendas—whether the liberals of the 19th century, or the Marxists and Communists of the 20th. To be “on the side of progress,” to be part of the irresistible “forces of history,” is to grant to one’s beliefs a kind of inescapable inevitability: you can’t oppose what I am saying and doing, because it’s simply going to happen, and you can’t stop it!

In our society, and in Western society generally, the inevitability and positive nature of intellectual progress is more or less taken for granted. Most conservatives, including those opposed supposedly to the current revolution on our campuses and in our streets, accept it as a given. They may demur and disagree about what the goals should or ought to be, but the essential premise, the template idea, remains fixed and unassailable.

Thus, on Fox News most pundits applaud greater “rights” for minorities, both racial and sexual. They just don’t agree with some of the more vigorous applications coming from the Left. For “establishment conservatives” increasingly same sex marriage must be a full constitutional right—full transgender normalization and acceptance in society is desirable—women must have equal access to every position or role that men have (e.g., no more male-only academies, no more “Boy” Scouts, etc.)—absolute racial equity, even if that means special advantages, must be pursued—and “American democratic values” are in all parts of the globe demanded (even at the point of an M-16 rifle).

The progressivist Left goes much further. Indeed, the same demands for equality, and expanded and newly-discovered “rights,” in the slogans and proposals of Leftists often become props in an overpowering effort, not as much for desired “social justice,” but more for the acquisition of power: a means to an end, the control of society and its structures.

Right after the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis and the first violent riots here in North Carolina, a couple of black college students videotaped a group of exclusively-white “millennials” demonstrating in a frenzy in Raleigh, North Carolina. The black videotapers noticed and commented that all the demonstrators were white, probably the sons and daughters of wealthy white (liberal) parents, and graduates of prestigious universities like Duke or UNC. The irony wasn’t lost on the two blacks, who wondered: “What do those privileged whites know about black issues?” Indeed, what they know is undergirded by and laden with the intellectual progressivism and post-Marxist ideology they’ve learned in classrooms at those very same prestigious universities.

In effect, these protesters demonstrate against “white supremacy” and “institutional racism” in a not-so-hidden effort to expiate their own sin of “whiteness,” inculcated into them by “woke” professors and an ideologized educational system.

But they are also out in the streets attempting to create a “new world order” in which the real objective is power, and that power recurs to global elites. “Systemic racism” may be a target but actually and more significantly, opposition to it is a means of advancing the overall goal of completely restructuring and recasting society—and the destruction of two millennia of civilization and its culture, annealed by the Christian faith—on behalf of those elites.

Until conservatives understand the fundamental dangers in embracing the “idea of progress” philosophically and in praxis—until they learn that beginning with the same premises on “equality” and “rights” as their purported opponents will inevitably conduct them to giving way to those opponents…and to denying implicitly, if not finally explicitly God-given creation and its natural and Divine Positive Laws–until they recognize this, they will remain prisoners of a dialectic that leads them always to eventual surrender to the Left.

The post-War Between the States Southern divine and essayist Robert Lewis Dabney summed up this type of conservatism succinctly and presciently 150 years ago. That quotation is apt and applies to far too many members of today’s “conservative loyal opposition”:

“This is a party which never conserves anything. Its history has been that it demurs to each aggression of the progressive party, and aims to save its credit by a respectable amount of growling, but always acquiesces at last in the innovation. What was the resisted novelty of yesterday is to-day one of the accepted principles of conservatism; it is now conservative only in affecting to resist the next innovation, which will to-morrow be forced upon its timidity, and will be succeeded by some third revolution, to be denounced and then adopted in its turn.

“American conservatism is merely the shadow that follows Radicalism as it moves forward towards perdition. It remains behind it, but never retards it, and always advances near its leader. This pretended salt hath utterly lost its savor: wherewith shall it he salted? Its impotency is not hard, indeed, to explain. It is worthless because it is the conservatism of expediency only, and not of sturdy principle. It intends to risk nothing serious, for the sake of the truth, and has no idea of being guilty of the folly of martyrdom. It always—when about to enter a protest—very blandly informs the wild beast whose path it essays to stop, that its ‘bark is worse than its bite,’ and that it only means to save its manners by enacting its decent rôle of resistance.

“The only practical purpose which it now subserves in American politics is to give enough exercise to Radicalism to keep it ‘in wind,’ and to prevent its becoming pursy and lazy from having nothing to whip. No doubt, after a few years, when women’s suffrage shall have become an accomplished fact, conservatism will tacitly admit it into its creed, and thenceforward plume itself upon its wise firmness in opposing with similar weapons the extreme of baby suffrage; and when that too shall have been won, it will be heard declaring that the integrity of the American Constitution requires at least the refusal of suffrage to asses. There it will assume, with great dignity, its final position.”  [From Womens’ Rights Women,” Discussions, vol. IV, Secular Discussions.]

Will they learn before it is too late? Or will they—far more likely—give way like previous temporizers in the face of the lunacy? 

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Doug Casey on the Truth About Millennials and the Next Crisis

Posted by M. C. on February 27, 2020

I don’t think that Millennials as a group really believe in themselves. A lot of blacks, Hispanics, and immigrants are resentful; a lot of the whites feel guilty and unjustly entitled. Few in any of these groups any longer seem to believe in the values—like individualism, personal responsibility, and liberty—that actually made the US different once upon a time.

Forget about freedom of thought, freedom of speech, freedom of the press, and free markets. All of these things are radically under attack. Those things are why America became what it is—or once was. It’s being washed away.

https://internationalman.com/articles/doug-casey-on-the-truth-about-millennials-and-the-next-crisis/

by Doug Casey

International Man: Many people perceive Millennials to be entitled, spoiled snowflakes who refuse to work hard.

Whether or not this is true, Millennials as a group will soon surpass the number of baby boomers as the largest generational group.

How equipped is this soon-to-be dominant generation for handling a financial crisis, a major war, or civil unrest?

Doug Casey: According to William Strauss and Neil Howe in their book, The Fourth Turning, the Millennials should be a “Hero” Generation, set to face a huge threat to the country.

For previous so-called Hero Generations, the threats were the Great Depression and then World War II. The time from 1929 to 1946 was full of societally threatening events. Much like today.

The Millennials are in a generational position similar to that of the so-called Greatest Generation, who are now mostly dead. The Millennials, however, don’t seem quite ready for hero-scale challenges. They’re mostly talking about safe spaces, diversity, free college, a guaranteed income, and being gender uncertain.

When the United States encounters a civilizational crisis—which in my opinion is here, it’s unfolding as we speak—it’s questionable whether the Millennials will have what it takes. You don’t get there by being gender questioning or sitting in your mother’s basement playing video games and getting fat.

International Man: It’s no secret that Democrats are turning to socialist ideas like universal health care, universal basic income, and more.

The baby boomer generation had a significant impact on government policies and welfare programs like Medicare. From 2008 to 2018 alone, Medicare spending grew from $462 billion to $731 billion.

What’s your take on how Millennials will shape the future of the United States?

Doug Casey: Let’s look at this from a long-term perspective—0ver the last 120 years.

At the turn of the 20th century, something like 85% or 90% of Americans were on the farm, actually growing food, getting up at 6:00 AM, and working 16-hour days. They were on the ragged edge of starvation during bad years. Even people in the cities had it pretty tough.

Now, with the Millennial generation, the average American is at least three generations off the farm. A lot of them think that milk doesn’t come from cows. They think it comes from cartons.

The kind of values that you get from growing up on a farm, or at least having parents who did, tend to vanish when you grow up in a suburb, have helicopter parents, and your main relationship with the outside world is electronic.

I don’t think that Millennials as a group really believe in themselves. A lot of blacks, Hispanics, and immigrants are resentful; a lot of the whites feel guilty and unjustly entitled. Few in any of these groups any longer seem to believe in the values—like individualism, personal responsibility, and liberty—that actually made the US different once upon a time.

Forget about freedom of thought, freedom of speech, freedom of the press, and free markets. All of these things are radically under attack. Those things are why America became what it is—or once was. It’s being washed away.

It seems like we have transitioned quite easily from a war against “godless communism” to war against Islam. Muhammedans look at the United States and Europe and see degraded societies without a philosophical center, without a belief in themselves. I suppose the Chinese are next on the dance card…

Even though they may for the most part be primitive, barefoot goat herders, Muhammedans hold the West in contempt. I’m afraid any serious conflict with the Muhammedans could end badly, regardless of our huge technological advantage. Why? Because, as Napoleon said, in war the psychological is to the physical as three is to one. And most of these people have a strong unifying faith—something totally lacking in the West.

Incidentally, I call their faith “Muhammedanism” as opposed to “Islam,” partly because you call followers of Christ, “Christians.” You call followers of Buddha, “Buddhists.” Followers of Confucius, “Confucians.” And so forth.

We used to call followers of Muhammed, “Muhammedans.” But the fact we no longer do is part of the general corruption of the language we now have in so many areas. “Islam” means “submission” in Arabic; it’s a PC word.

When you let an adversary take control of what words mean and which words are used, you’ve already lost the high ground. When you lose control of your own language, you lose control of your thought processes, and basically everything else follows. No wonder they hold the West in contempt.

If it comes down to a military conflict where the Millennial generation has to fill in for the previous so-called Hero Generation in the Strauss-Howe model, the West is in trouble. That’s true whether the conflict is with the Chinese or the followers of The Prophet.

That’s apart from the fact the US military itself is a very different animal from what it once was. With some exceptions, the US military today is made up of refugees from barrios, trailer parks, and ghettos. I don’t approve of the draft, but for what it’s worth, at least the draft was kind of a cross section of the US. Now, the military is very self-selecting.

It’s actually a completely separate culture within the US. Their first loyalty, like the police, is to other soldiers. Secondarily to their employer, the US government. And only third to America—which is no longer a republic. It’s a domestic empire.

I’m very antiwar as a matter of principle. But if it comes down to a military conflict I don’t see a happy ending, because all we have are ultra-expensive and obsolescent toys useful mainly to fatten the profits of so-called “defense” companies. Generals cozy up to them so they can cash in with fat consulting contracts after they retire. I suspect, incidentally, the next war will have huge biological and cyber elements.

There’s another x factor. The Millennial generation has grown up on first-person shooter video games. Some, if they have an extra Y chromosome, may want to put that into practice. You can really do that only in the military or the police—most of whom are ex-military today.

I’ve gone off on a few tangents, using the Strauss and Howe book as a platform. But my intention here wasn’t to do a book review. That said, I again want to recommend their work. They came up with something original and valuable, which offers a pretty solid look into the near future.

Editor’s Note: Unfortunately, there’s little any individual can practically do to change the course of these trends in motion.

The coming economic and political crisis is going to be much worse, much longer, and very different than what we’ve seen in the past.

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If THIS Continues To Happen, America Is Doomed ...

 

 

 

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A 2020 Citizenship Questionnaire for Millennials – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on January 3, 2020

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2020/01/thomas-dilorenzo/a-2020-citizenship-questionnaire-for-millennials/

By

The following is a set of propositions about the nature of government and its relationship to the citizenry that I think should be of special interest to the younger generation, whether they are “millennials” or one of the other nicknamed younger age groups.  Look at it as a quiz, with each answer either “agree” or “disagree” and see how you do.  Here we go.

  1. It would be better if we had a unified country.
  2. We should have equal rights with respect to other nations.
  3. Any person who is not a citizen will be able to live in our country as a guest.
  4. Government has a duty to provide employment for all of its citizens.
  5. All citizens should have equal right and duties.
  6. The economy must be carried out within the framework of the general good of the community.
  7. War profiteering should be a crime.
  8. Large corporations should be nationalized so that they serve the common good and not private interests.
  9. Corporations should adopt profit sharing.
  10. Government should provide old-age pensions to all retirees.
  11. Government should cultivate a sound middle class.
  12. Government should have a right to expropriate land for public purposes without paying for it.
  13. Government should use tax dollars to educate all children.
  14. All children should be educated about the state by the state as early as possible.
  15. All college education should be “free” and paid for with tax revenues.
  16. Child labor should be banned.
  17. The army should be a national army controlled by the central government.
  18. Spreading false “news” should be illegal.
  19. There should be religious freedom for all, as long as it does not endanger the existence of the government.
  20. Excessive materialism should be condemned and outlawed.
  21. Government policy should be guided by the dictum of “Public Interest before Private Interest.”

If you answered “agree” to at least eleven of these statements, then you would have made a good Nazi.  They are all taken from the February 24, 1920 Platform of the Nazi Party, formally known as “The Program of the National-Socialist German Workers’ Party”.

Our good friend, the late Professor Butler Shaffer, used to present a version of this questionnaire to his first-year law students at Southwestern University School of Law in Los Angeles, generations of which must have been very surprised at how the previous sixteen years or so of public school indoctrination in collectivism had turned them into ideological soulmates of Adolf Hitler.

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Millennial Views: Hitler, Hitler, Hitler! Marcia, Marcia ...

 

 

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Young People Ignorant of History for 11/13/2019

Posted by M. C. on November 24, 2019

https://www.creators.com/read/walter-williams/11/19/young-people-ignorant-of-history

By Walter E.Williams

A recent survey conducted by the Victims of Communism and polled by YouGov, a research and data firm, found that 70% of millennials are likely to vote socialist and that one in three millennials saw communism as “favorable.”

Let examine this tragic vision in light of the Fraser Institute’s recently released annual study “Economic Freedom of the World,” prepared by Professors James Gwartney, Florida State University; Robert A. Lawson and Ryan Murphy of Southern Methodist University; and Joshua Hall, West Virginia University, in cooperation with the Economic Freedom Network.

Hong Kong and Singapore maintained their lead as the world’s most economically free countries — although China’s heavy hand threatens Hong Kong’s top ranking. Rounding out the top 10 are New Zealand, Switzerland, the United States, Ireland, the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia and Mauritius. By the way, after having fallen to 16th in 2016, the U.S. has staged a comeback to being in the top five economically free countries in the world.

What statistics go into the Fraser Institute’s calculation of economic freedom? The report measures the ability of individuals to make their own economic decisions by analyzing the policies and institutions of 162 countries and territories. These include regulation, freedom to trade internationally, size of government, sound legal system, private property rights and government spending and taxation.

Fraser Institute scholar Fred McMahon says, “Where people are free to pursue their own opportunities and make their own choices, they lead more prosperous, happier and healthier lives.” The evidence for his assessment is: Countries in the top quartile of economic freedom had an average per-capita GDP of $36,770 in 2017 compared with $6,140 for bottom quartile countries. Poverty rates are lower. In the top quartile, 1.8% of the population experienced extreme poverty ($1.90 a day) compared with 27.2% in the lowest quartile. Life expectancy is 79.5 years in the top quartile of economically free countries compared with 64.4 years in the bottom quartile.

The Fraser Institute’s rankings of other major countries include Japan (17th), Germany (20th), Italy (46th), France (50th), Mexico (76th), India (79th), Russia (85th), China (113th) and Brazil (120th). The least free countries are Venezuela, Argentina, Ukraine and nearly every African country with the most notable exception of Mauritius. By the way, Argentina and Venezuela used to be rich until they bought into socialism.

During the Cold War, leftists made a moral equivalency between communist totalitarianism and democracy. W. E. B. Du Bois, writing in the National Guardian (1953) said, “Joseph Stalin was a great man; few other men of the 20th century approach his stature.” Walter Duranty called Stalin “the greatest living statesman … a quiet, unobtrusive man.” George Bernard Shaw expressed admiration for Mussolini, Hitler and Stalin. Economist John Kenneth Galbraith visited Mao’s China and praised Mao Zedong and the Chinese economic system. Gunther Stein of the Christian Science Monitor also admired Mao and declared ecstatically that “the men and women pioneers of Yenan are truly new humans in spirit, thought and action.” Michel Oksenberg, President Jimmy Carter’s China expert, complained that “America (is) doomed to decay until radical, even revolutionary, change fundamentally alters the institutions and values,” and urged us to “borrow ideas and solutions” from China.

Leftists exempted communist leaders from the harsh criticism directed toward Adolf Hitler, even though communist crimes against humanity made Hitler’s slaughter of 11 million noncombatants appear almost amateurish. According to Professor R.J. Rummel’s research in “Death by Government,” from 1917 until its collapse, the Soviet Union murdered or caused the death of 61 million people, mostly its own citizens. From 1949 to 1976, Mao’s Communist regime was responsible for the death of as many as 76 million Chinese citizens.

Today’s leftists, socialists and progressives would bristle at the suggestion that their agenda differs little from that of past tyrants. They should keep in mind that the origins of the unspeakable horrors of Nazism, Stalinism and Maoism did not begin in the ’20s, ’30s and ’40s. Those horrors were simply the result of a long evolution of ideas leading to a consolidation of power in the central government in the quest for “social justice.”

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Still Fighting the Last War Against Socialism | Mises Institute

Posted by M. C. on November 16, 2019

Even in the midst of almost unimaginable material comforts made possible only by markets and entrepreneurs—both derided by socialists—we cannot manage to conclusively defeat the tired but deadly old arguments for collective ownership of capital.

https://mises.org/power-market/still-fighting-last-war-against-socialism

Jeff Deist

Why does support for socialism persist?

The short answer may be simple human nature, our natural tendency toward dissatisfaction with the present and unease about the future. Even in the midst of almost unimaginable material comforts made possible only by markets and entrepreneurs—both derided by socialists—we cannot manage to conclusively defeat the tired but deadly old arguments for collective ownership of capital. We’re so rich that socialists imagine the material wealth all around us will continue to organize itself magically, regardless of incentives.

It’s a vexing problem, and not an academic one. Millions of young people across America and the West consider socialism a viable and even noble approach to organizing society, literally unaware of the piles of bodies various socialist governments produced in the 20th century. The fast-growing Democratic Socialists of America, led by media darlings Rashida Tlaib and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, now enjoy cool kid status. Open socialist Bernie Sanders very nearly won the Democratic Party’s 2016 nominee for president before being kneecapped by the Clinton machine. New York City mayor Bill de Blasio helpfully announces “there is plenty of money in this city, it’s just in the wrong hands.” He freely and enthusiastically champions confiscation and redistribution of wealth without injury to his political popularity.

Rand Paul and Thomas Massie are outliers on the Right. Ocasio-Cortez and de Blasio are not outliers on the Left.

How is this possible, even as markets and semi-capitalism lift millions out of poverty? Why does socialism keep cropping up, and why do many well-intentioned (and ill-intentioned) people keep falling for something so patently evil and unworkable? Why do some battles have to be fought over and over?

The Soviet Union collapsed and the Berlin War fell decades ago. The Eastern Bloc discovered western consumerism, and liked it. Bill Clinton declared the era of Big Government over, and Francis Fukuyama absurdly pronounced that Western ideology had forever won the day. Even China and Cuba eventually succumbed to pressure for greater economic freedoms, not because of any ideological shift but because it became impossible to hide the reality of capitalist wealth abroad.

Yet economic freedom and property rights are under assault today in the very Western nations that became rich because of them.

Today’s socialists insist their model society would look like Sweden or Denmark; not the USSR or Nazi Germany or Venezuela. They merely want fairness and equality, free healthcare and schooling, an end to “hoarded” wealth, and so forth. And they don’t always advocate for or even know the textbook definition of socialism, as professors Benjamin Powell and Robert Lawson learned by attending socialist conferences (see their new book Socialism Sucks: Two Economists Drink Their Way Through the Unfree World). In many cases young people think socialism simply means a happy world where people are taken care of.

Never mind the Scandinavian countries in question insist they are not socialist, never mind the atrocities of Stalin or Mao or Pol Pot, and never mind the overwhelming case made by Ludwig von Mises and others against central economic planning. Without private owners, without capital at risk, without prices, and especially without profit and loss signals, economies quickly become corrupted and serve only the political class. Nicolás Maduro feasts while poor Venezuelans eat dogs, but of course this isn’t “real” socialism.

History and theory don’t matter to socialists because they imagine society can be engineered. The old arguments and historical examples simply don’t apply: even human nature is malleable, and whenever our stubborn tendencies don’t comport with socialism’s grand plans a “social construct” is to blame.

These most recent spasms of support for the deadly ideology of socialism remind us that progressives aren’t kidding. They may not fully understand what socialism means, but they fully intend to bring it about. Single-payer health care, “free” education, wealth redistribution schemes, highly progressive income taxes, wealth taxes, gun bans, and radical curbs on fossil fuels are all on the immediate agenda. They will do this quickly if possible, incrementally if they have to (see, again, the 20th century). They will do it with or without popular support, using legislatures, courts and judges, supranational agencies,university indoctrination, friendly media, or whatever political, economic, or social tools it takes (including de-platforming and hate speech laws). This is not paranoia; all of this is openly discussed. And say what you will about progressivism, it does have a central if false ethos: egalitarianism.

Conservatives, by contrast, are not serious. They have no animating spirit. They don’t much talk about liberty or property or markets or opportunity. They don’t mean what they say about the Constitution, they won’t do a thing to limit government, they won’t touch entitlements or defense spending, they won’t abolish the Department of Education or a single federal agency, they won’t touch abortion laws, and they sure won’t give up their own socialist impulses. Trumpism, though not conservative and thoroughly non-intellectual, drove a final stake through the barely beating heart of Right intellectualism, from the Weekly Standard to National Review. Conservatism today is incoherent, both ideologically and tactically incapable of countering the rising tide of socialism.

Generals always fight the last war, and politics is no different. We all tend to see the current political climate in terms of old and familiar divisions, long-faded alliances, and obsolete rhetoric. We all cling to the comfortable ideology and influences that help us make sense of a chaotic world. As one commenter recently put it, liberal Baby Boomers still think it’s 1968 and conservative Baby Boomers still think it’s 1985. Generation X and Millennials will exhibit the same blinders. It may be disheartening to keep fighting what should be a long-settled battle against socialism, but today we have no other choice.

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'Welcome to 'All Sides of the Issues.' Here's our panel of commentators -- a communist, a socialist, a liberal, and a progressive....'

 

 

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1 In 3 Millennials See Communism As Favorable, Survey Finds

Posted by M. C. on October 28, 2019

“When we don’t educate our youngest generations about the historical truth of 100 million victims murdered at the hands of communist regimes over the past century, we shouldn’t be surprised at their willingness to embrace Marxist ideas,”

Is this the future of the US? Oh Mao goodness!

https://dailycaller.com/2019/10/28/millennials-communism-socialism-poll/

Mary Margaret Olohan Social Issues Reporter

A growing number of Millennials show support for communism and socialism, a survey from the Victims of Communism found.

The survey, conducted by the Victims of Communism and polled by the research and data firm YouGov, found that 70% of Millennials are likely to vote socialist and that one in three Millennials perceive communism as “favorable.” The survey is part of the Victims of Communism’s report “U.S. Attitudes Toward Socialism, Communism, and Collectivism,” which polled 2,100 people in the United States who were 16 and older with a margin of error of +/- 2.4%.

A little over half of the Millennials polled said the Declaration of Independence “guarantees freedom and equality” better than the Communist Manifesto.

“The historical amnesia about the dangers of communism and socialism is on full display in this year’s report,” said Marion Smith, executive director of the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation.

“When we don’t educate our youngest generations about the historical truth of 100 million victims murdered at the hands of communist regimes over the past century, we shouldn’t be surprised at their willingness to embrace Marxist ideas,”…

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The World’s Least-Free Countries Reveal Just How Much “Socialism Sucks” | Mises Wire

Posted by M. C. on October 15, 2019

https://mises.org/wire/worlds-least-free-countries-reveal-just-how-much-socialism-sucks?utm_source=Mises+Institute+Subscriptions&utm_campaign=b832e6eb69-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_9_21_2018_9_59_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_8b52b2e1c0-b832e6eb69-228343965

[Socialism Sucks: Two Economists Drink Their Way Through the Unfree World. By Robert Lawson and Benjamin Powell.  Regnery Publishing, 2019. 192 pages.]

Robert Lawson and Benjamin Powell are well-known free market economists, and they do not look with favor on a disturbing trend among American young people. “In the spring of 2016,” they tell us, “a Harvard survey found that a third of eighteen-to twenty-nine year olds supported socialism. Another survey, from the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation, reported that millennials supported socialism over any other economic system.” (p.8)

Unfortunately, the young people in question have little idea of the nature of socialism. Lawson and Powell would like to remedy this situation, but they confront a problem. Ordinarily, one would urge students to read Hazlitt’s Economics in One Lesson, Mises’s “Economic Calculation in the Socialist Commonwealth,” and similar classic works, in order to understand the basic facts about the free market and socialism, but the millennials are unlikely to do so. One must attract their attention. What can be done?

Lawson and Powell have had the happy idea of presenting elementary economics in a humorous way that will appeal to those “turned off” by serious and sober scholarship. In the latter adjective lies the key to their approach. Both of the authors enjoy drinking beer, and they travel around the world to various socialist countries in pursuit of their beloved beverage, making incisive comments about the economy of each country as they do so. They write in a salty style that will make millennials laugh, though some readers will find it jarring.

For the young, “socialism” means no more than vague ideas about “fairness”, but, the authors note, the term has a precise meaning: “To separate the state from socialism in any large society is like trying to separate private property from capitalism. It can’t be done. I’ll say it once more for the people in the back: socialism, in practice, means that the state owns and controls the means of production.” (p.128) No country is completely socialist, but some are more socialist than others. How can the degree of socialism be evaluated? Lawson has, along with James Gwartney, produced an annual economic freedom index for the Fraser Institute, which the authors use to answer this question, sometimes with surprising results.

Many professed socialists look to Sweden for inspiration, but according to the freedom index, “Sweden gets a 7.54 rating, which is good enough for twenty-seventh place out of the 159 countries in the study. . .Bottom line: Sweden is a prosperous, mostly capitalist country.” (pp.10-11)…

If some people admire Sweden, few except fanatics have good words for the economy of Cuba. Nevertheless, must we not recognize the wonders accomplished by the Cuban socialized medicine? We must give the devil his due. Lawson and Powell are not convinced. “Official Cuban health statistics are impressive. . .Yet, we also know that the hospitals most Cubans use are so poorly equipped that people often have to bring their own sheets. What gives? The silence [on the streets} is part of the answer. The lack of automobiles means a lack of traffic fatalities. Since automobile accidents are a leading cause of death among younger people, the lack of automobiles has a disproportionate impact on life expectancy statistics for reasons that have nothing to do with health care. The low rate of infant mortality is a product of data manipulation.” (p.53)

Why has Cuban socialism, like all other centralized socialist economies, failed? The authors present with great clarity the essential point: “’[A]lmost a hundred years ago, the Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises explained that socialism, even if run by benevolent despots and populated with workers willing to work for the common good, could still not match capitalism’s performance. Socialism requires abolishing private property in the means of production. But private property is necessary to have the free exchange of labor, capital, and goods that establish proper prices. Without proper prices, socialist planners could not know which consumer goods were needed or how best to produce them. . .Socialism also gives tremendous power to government officials and bureaucrats who are the system’s planners—and with that power comes corruption, abuse, and tyranny.” (p.37)

Socialist tyrants were the greatest mass murderers in history, and the young must be apprised of this melancholy fact. “Stalin ranks just behind Mao as history’s second greatest mass murderer, with Hitler coming in third—and all three dictators were, of course, committed socialists of one sort or another.” (p.115)…

It is not only the drug war, but the war on terror as well, that ought to be condemned, and here once more, the many millennials who protested against the war are in the right. “We feel the same about the war on terror. The wars and violence associated with it in the Middle East are a major reason for Europe’s immigration wave. . .advocates for capitalism can be against war precisely because war undermine capitalist institutions and freedoms.. . .Chris Coyne wrote a book entitled After War: The Political Economy of Exporting Democracy, in which he shows that when the U.S. engages in foreign intervention, it rarely creates the kind of lasting institutional change that supports what some might call a ‘neoliberal’ society. Economist Robert Higgs’s classic book, Crisis and Leviathan, shows how crises in the United States, especially wars, have led to expanded government at the expense of markets. Chris’s latest book, Tyranny Come Hone: The Domestic Fate of U.S. Militarism, co-authored with another friend of ours, Abby Hall, has shown how U.S. military interventions abroad ‘boomerang’ back to the United States in ways that decrease our freedoms at home. See, anti-war isn’t a uniquely leftist position. Capitalists should be anti-war too.” (pp.136-137. I regret the use of “neoliberal” as a term of praise and the solecism “advocates for.”)

I confess that I approached the authors’ project of a drinking tour of the socialist countries with skepticism. Would it be more than ajeu d’esprit? Reading the book has laid my skepticism to rest. Socialism Sucks has the potential to do great good, if it gets into the right hands, and its impressive sales suggest that it will do so.

Be seeing you

Sean Penn

The Dumb and Dumber of economics

 

 

 

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Bernie & Joe – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on June 7, 2019

Many moderate Democrats will not vote for a lifelong socialist who chose to spend his honeymoon during the Cold War in the Soviet Union.

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2019/06/patrick-j-buchanan/bernie-joe/

By

In 2018, a record turnout of women, minorities and young added 40 House seats to Democratic ranks and made Nancy Pelosi speaker.

This, we were told, is the new diversity coalition — women, people of color, millennials — that will take down The Donald in 2020.

So, how has the Democratic field sorted itself out half a year later?

According to the Real Clear Politics average of polls, two old white guys, Joe Biden, 76, and Bernie Sanders, 77, are setting the pace and have together corralled more than half of all Democrats.

There is a good chance the party of minorities, millennials and women will be led in 2020 by a white man who would be the oldest candidate ever nominated by a major party.

Biden and Bernie may be wheezing, but the old white boys are out in front of the pack.

Add Pete Buttigieg and Beto O’Rourke, running fifth and sixth, and 60 percent of Democrats favor white men for the nomination. Only 20 percent favor one of five women: Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, Amy Klobuchar, Kirsten Gillibrand or Tulsi Gabbard.

The African American candidates, Harris and Cory Booker, are backed by only 1 in 10 Democrats. Julian Castro, the lone Hispanic, is at 1 percent, as is the Asian American Andrew Yang.

While the first primaries are half a year off, the odds today favor — after nominating Barack Obama twice and then Hillary Clinton — Democrats returning to the 20th-century traditional candidate — a seasoned white man.

Frontrunner Biden is benefitting from the fact that his closest rival, Bernie Sanders, is a socialist with a large and loyal following from his 2016 campaign. For Bernie sits on a huge pile of votes Biden may not be able to win, but which Bernie is denying to any other challenger.

Indeed, Bernie is becoming a problem for a whole host of Democrats.

If he defeats Biden for the nomination, he pulls Democrats a long way to becoming a U.S. replica of the British Labour Party of Jeremy Corbyn. Many moderate Democrats will not vote for a lifelong socialist who chose to spend his honeymoon during the Cold War in the Soviet Union…

Though Biden has more than a third of all Democrats behind him, he has slipped from his highest ratings and is under attack from his many rivals who believe a new day has come and who want old white men to go into retirement and get out of the way…

Biden is being hit for a variety of sins over a career that began in 1972. He voted to authorize George W. Bush to take us to war in Iraq. He led the fight for the 1994 anti-crime bill now viewed as tough on minorities. He left Anita Hill twisting in the wind when he was chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee during the Clarence Thomas hearings. He denounced busing for racial balance back in the 1970s and 1980s.

Now the old plagiarism charges from his law school days and his presidential campaign of 1988 are being resurrected, since the Biden campaign distributed materials to back up his plan for combatting climate change with lines plagiarized from other sources.

Another noteworthy development of recent weeks is the progress of Elizabeth Warren, due to the sheer number and appeal of her ideas for soaking the rich and using the revenue to create new entitlements in the name of “economic patriotism.” Say what you will, she is talking issues.

Mayor Pete seems to have eased back from his earlier highs, and stalled. As for Beto, he may be flailing those arms around like a drowning man — because he is one. The bloom is off the rose. Beto seems frozen at 4 percent. There is truth in what Alice Roosevelt Longworth said of Tom Dewey’s re-nomination in 1948 after having lost to FDR in 1944.

You can’t make a souffle rise a second time.

Be seeing you

Joe Biden's son joins board of Ukraine gas giant - YouTube

 

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A horrible future awaits for anyone who depends on government | The Daily Bell

Posted by M. C. on April 27, 2019

https://www.thedailybell.com/all-articles/news-analysis/a-horrible-future-awaits-for-anyone-who-depends-on-government/

By Joe Jarvis

Lice, cockroaches, and root canals all have better approval ratings than Congress.

Congress controls government spending. And nine out of every ten people say the government doesn’t spend tax dollars wisely.

57% say tax rates are too high.

(But only 13% want to cut right to the heart of the issue and abolish the IRS.)

And whatever side of the aisle you’re on, the voters’ choice of President seems to be getting more ludicrous with each election cycle.

We all agree there is plenty to bitch about when it comes to the government.

But I’m still waiting for people to realize that you can ignore most of what the federal government does.

I don’t cast a ballot on election day. I vote with my life choices.

Sure I’ll criticize the US government; they certainly deserve it. But I don’t fight them. I just step aside, find the loophole, and get on with my life.

When one loophole closes, another opens. For instance, I plan to move to Puerto Rico and pay a total tax burden of 4% by taking advantage of the amazing tax incentives of Act 20 and 22.

Identifying how to navigate around the beast is a much more valuable outlet for my energy compared to campaigning, rallying, or arguing.

Yet some people are hopelessly stuck in the system.

A recent survey found that 80% of millennials worry Social Security won’t be there for them when they retire.

And they’re right – it won’t. The Social Security Administration admits it will run out of money in 2034.

Luckily, millennials have decades, sometimes almost half a century to go until retirement.

You can’t save Social Security by voting, running for office, or rioting in the streets. It’s already over $50 trillion short on the promises it’s made.

But you can take your retirement into your own hands. Read the rest of this entry »

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Millennials for Socialism – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on April 10, 2019

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2019/04/walter-e-williams/millennials-for-socialism/

By

If one needed evidence of the gross ignorance of millennials, and their teachers and college professors, it’s their solid support for socialism and socialist presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders. Socialism has produced tragedy wherever it has been implemented. Last year marked the 40th anniversary of nearly 1,000 Americans perishing in a mass suicide/murder in the jungles of Guyana. Just as Sanders and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez see socialism as mankind’s salvation, so, too, did Rev. Jim Jones, who told his followers, “God is Socialism, and I am Principle Socialism, and that’s what makes me God.”

Perhaps the most disastrous failing of our educational system and the news media is that people are neither required nor encouraged to test ideas against facts. The promises of socialism sound wonderful and caring, but in reality, wherever it has been tried it has been a true disaster. Let’s examine the history of socialism.

During the first three decades of the 20th century, Argentina was one of the world’s top-10 richest nations. It was ahead of Canada and Australia in total and per capita income. After Juan Peron’s ideas, captured in his economic creed that he called “national socialism,” became a part of Argentina’s life, the country fell into economic chaos. Today, it has fallen to 25th in terms of GDP.

Nicolas Maduro, an avowed socialist, has turned oil-rich Venezuela into a place where there are shortages of everything from toilet paper to beer, where electricity keeps shutting down, and where there are long lines of people hoping to get food. Some people are eating their pets and feeding their children from garbage bins. Socialism has crippled Venezuela’s once-thriving economy. Today, Venezuela is among the world’s most tragically poor countries.

Socialism can be tested by doing a few side-by-side country comparisons…

Be seeing you

Sean Penn

The Dumb and Dumber of economics

 

 

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