Libertarian History/Philosophy

Are Libertarians Drifting Away From Obama and the Democrats?

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That's the suggestion from David Boaz, executive vice president of the Cato Institute, in this op-ed. Excerpt:

Probably racist

Research that David Kirby and I have done shows that libertarian-leaning voters have typically given up to 70 percent of their votes to Republicans. But in 2004 and 2006, that number fell off sharply. Republican congressional candidates barely held a majority of libertarian votes in 2006, and of course the Republicans took a pounding in that election. […]

Some of those independents voted Democratic in 2006 and 2008, figuring that the Democrats would be more tolerant and could hardly be more profligate. And what are they now seeing?

President Obama is exceeding all their fears on fiscal and economic issues. After promising a "net spending cut" during the campaign and denouncing "the most fiscally irresponsible administration in history," he has sent federal spending and the deficit soaring into the stratosphere.

Meanwhile, he's not delivering what some of his voters hoped for on social issues. […]

Independents who turned against the Republicans are likely to become equally disillusioned with Obama, and there's already some evidence of that in the polls. Support for "smaller government with fewer services" has risen in the ABC News/Washington Post poll, and independents prefer it by 61 to 35 percent, a margin three times as large as a year ago. The number of people who see Obama as an "old-style tax and spend Democrat" has risen by 11 percentage points.

Whole thing here. Related reading: Virginia Postrel, Brink Lindsey, Richard Epstein, Bruce Bartlett, Jonathan Rauch, and Deirdre McCloseky assess whether there is "Any Hope for this Man," back in our November 2008 issue.


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  1. “the most fiscally irresponsible administration in history,”

    Some of us recognized that only meant “they aren’t spending in the right places.”

  2. I can’t believe some of you assdrizzlers ever believed that he was something different than an “old-style tax and spend Democrat”.

  3. But Obama is so cool and errudite. He is a pramatist who will bring everyone together!! I think I am down to two liberal friends who can still give that line with a straight face. The rest of them either say fuck you do what we tell you to you RACIST!! or they have this sort of embarassed and dazed look on their face and try to change the subject.

  4. I don’t explicitly define myself as libertarian as I don’t like to put my views in any sort of preconceived boundary. Nevertheless, if you sit a self-defined liberal, a conservative, and a libertarian at a table, I’ll be most in accord with the libertarian’s views.

    With that said, I saw through Obama’s BS at his speech during the 2004 DNC. Unlike most people, and purely by chance, I read the transcript of his speech before I actually saw or heard it. I thought his speech was silly then and I’ve never taken anything he’s said seriously since then.

    But the *snap* of the media strapping on its kneepads for the long-haul was evident in the aftermath of his “breakout” day.

  5. DanD,

    All of his speeches are silly if you read the transcipt. When you read the transcipt you are reading for content and argument. But sadly, no one reads the speeches. They hear them given and are under the spell of “look there is a black man and he is sayiing such cool stuff”.

    How anyone who was paying attention didn’t know BO was a nasty leftist is beyond me. I guess people see what they want to see.

  6. This is news? Are their any libertarians actually defending Obama? Didn’t pretty much every libertarian who voted for him (or voted third party but rooted for him, i.e. me) assume they were going to be disappointed? I sure as hell did.

  7. Warty,

    I don’t know many people (who frequent this pace) who thought that Obama was going to be anything other than a grade-A clusterfuck, financially. However, some of them (including me, though I voted Barr anyway) figured that he was either lying categorically or (far less likely) telling the truth categorically. Little did we know that he was lying about the things we agreed with him on and telling the truth about the things we didn’t.

    Should we have suspected as much? In retrospect, probably.

  8. “This is news? Are their any libertarians actually defending Obama? Didn’t pretty much every libertarian who voted for him (or voted third party but rooted for him, i.e. me) assume they were going to be disappointed? I sure as hell did.”

    Not the ones on here. They were convinced he was cool. And they so wanted to vote for a black guy who was acceptable. They thought he was another Clinton without the bimbos and the McDonalds. Lots of people convinced themselves that he would be an economic centrist and actually intended to curb the Bush anti-terror policies.

  9. I can’t believe some of you assdrizzlers ever believed that he was something different than an “old-style tax and spend Democrat”.

    I’m still waiting for the douchebags who voted (why would you vote?!?) for Obama to say “whoops, we fucked up”.

    You didn’t have to vote for McCain–just vote for Barr or just don’t vote (like me).

  10. “Little did we know that he was lying about the things we agreed with him on and telling the truth about the things we didn’t.”

    Suckers!! I said all along he was not going to change one thing about Iraq or the war on terror. But even I never thought he would be sending 60,000 more troops to Afghanistan and would manage to run up a one and a half trillion dollar debt in his first six months in office. If I had predicted that last fall, everyone would have called me a nut.

  11. “Liberaltarianism” is now as dead an issue as the paleolibertarian/paleocon alliance of the 1990s is. Libertarians are always going to be the battered spouse in these relationships, and it’s past time to stop being so damn codependent.

  12. “All of his speeches are silly if you read the transcipt. When you read the transcipt you are reading for content and argument. But sadly, no one reads the speeches.”

    I only *read* the speeches. I can’t stand listening to him talk.

  13. “I only *read* the speeches. I can’t stand listening to him talk.”

    Neither can I. And also, what happened to Obama being the great communicator? He is out doing these town halls on Obamacare and falling on his ass. You don’t hear much about his incredible rethorical skills these days.

  14. I caught Obama on the TV at lunch talking about Afghanistan — it could have been Bush in 2002.

    I never liked the dude, but I can’t understand how the people who voted for him still believe anything he says.

  15. I can’t stand listening to him talk.

    Word. He’s only a half-step above Bush.

  16. What are the odds American troops will be still fighting in his Afghan quagmire long after Obamessiah is gone from the White House?

  17. “I caught Obama on the TV at lunch talking about Afghanistan — it could have been Bush in 2002.”

    He is everything his supporters accused Bush of being. He has no plan. No idea what victory looks like. No idea what our interest in staying in the country is. All he has is the idea that the surge worked in Iraq so therefore we should do it in Afghanistan.

    He and sadly the country is paying the price for being a lying sack of shit during the Bush years. The Left played the Afghanistan war as the “just war” as a way to beat Bush over the head about Iraq. First, they never really supported or gave a shit about Afghanistan. They were just looking to score cheap points. Second, wars of this type are never so simple as to be definitely good or bad. Yeah, Afghanistan was a just war in 2002. But that doesn’t mean that we should stay there forever and fight out their civil war or that it will remain the front line in the war on radical Islam forever. But, BO and the Dems talked so much shit on Afghanistan being the good war and how it was being lost for Iraq, that he has painted himself in a corner. He can’t get out without admitting that he didn’t mean anything he said during the Bush years. So we are now stuck doing a surge in Afghanistan and staying there for God knows how long. Maybe that is the right thing to do. I am not sure to be honest. But it doesn’t matter because that is what we are doing thanks to BO painting himself in a corner.

  18. I can honestly say that, in my life, i have never voted for a Republican or a Democrat, and any a’ youse who has and who feels ok with that fact can swing on my balls. Just swing right on ’em.

  19. A new poll shows that 99% of those libertarians who voted for BHO did so because they thought there’d be free pot. Now they see that they were wrong.

    But, seriously, anyone who voted for BHO not knowing what he’d do is an idiot.

  20. “What are the odds American troops will be still fighting in his Afghan quagmire long after Obamessiah is gone from the White House?”

    My bet is they are good, unless of course Pakistan goes hostile and we have 100,000 people in the middle of Asia with no way to supply them or extract them. That will put an end to that quagmire.

  21. Shut the fuck up, LoneWacko. You are not worthy to even prostrate yourself near my balls.

  22. LW,

    That’s your best comment in five years.

  23. Sorry, X, but he’s right. Maybe he’s right about everything.

    I’m feeling woozy.

  24. Pro Lib, even when LoneWacko is right, he’s still a piece of shit.

  25. There is a great disturbance in the force; lonewacko is making sense.

  26. 100,000 people in the middle of Asia with no way to supply them or extract them

    They could go native, like a bunch of Alexander’s troops did. I saw an article in National Geographic once about a remote Afghan tribe whose dialect contained a strong Greek influence, and who still worshipped Greek gods.

  27. You got a backhanded compliment, Lonewacko. Better shut the fuck up while you’re ahead.

  28. Great, and I only have twenty more years to straighten this mess out in my book series before we go to war with Iran.

    If he keeps pulling this crap not even erotic romance future fiction will be able to save the world.

  29. “Drifting”???!!

    I guess that depends on your definition. If you mean running away like hell like a school girl from Chris Hansen’s house, then yeah, I suppose we’re “drifting.”

  30. Wow. LW made a good point.

    In other news, I think I just saw a group of pigs flying by my office window. Not sure what that was about.

  31. If by drifting you mean running like a stripped assed ape with his nuts on fire, then yes one could say I am drifting. We traded a lumpy corn ridden turd for a shinny polished turd. It still smells like shit.

    It’s really nothing surprising for since I tend to take Chuck D’s advice. Because I don’t believe the hype – its a sequel
    As an equal, can I get this through to you?

    I’m a little bummed someone didn’t run this as a campaign add against Obama.

  32. Xeones, you may want to have those testicles examined by a medical professional, they shouldn’t be swinging that low.

    In other news: I don’t think I personally know any libertarians who voted for Obama. My roommate might qualify – but he’s not yet a libertarian, he’s slowly being converted by weekly infusions of P&T’s Bullshit! and my constant proselytizing.

  33. do return failure.

  34. Also, he informs me: he voted for Barr.

  35. The rest of them either say fuck you do what we tell you to you RACIST!! or they have this sort of embarassed and dazed look on their face and try to change the subject.

    On a brighter note, I am seeing much more genuine interest in libertarianism as a result of the Bush-Obama double whammy.

  36. It was the prospect of having to defend Obama/Pelosi/Reid’s policies that drove Joe from this board.

  37. Doh Doh, typo failure on the return failure.

    Today is going swell.

  38. Xeones, you may want to have those testicles examined by a medical professional, they shouldn’t be swinging that low.

    I think he’s a teabagger.

  39. A new poll shows that 99% of those libertarians who voted for BHO did so because they thought there’d be free pot. Now they see that they were wrong.

    Wait. There isn’t going to be free pot?

    Oh. And . . . .

    Chris Kelly

    *shakes fist at LoneWacko*

  40. It’s as if a million libertarian voices cried out and were suddenly silent.

  41. I seem to recall that LW was more of a mainstream poster 6-7 years ago. For instance, see this post.

    LW: Sorry for talking about you like you aren’t here, but that’s one of the problems with blog comments. We’re all of questionable existence around here, anyway. I’m almost certainly the product of Google Labs.

  42. Well, now that the cosmotarians have gotten this “let’s end the legacy of racism by voting for a black dude” identity politics rubbish out of their system, can they consider going back to voting LP or not voting at all, like I did? (I voted for Barr, just to be on the record that SOMEONE in Hawaii isn’t a statist).

  43. Word. He’s only a half-step above Bush.

    Yup, you can train a parrot to speak well. It’s how the leader leads that really matters.

  44. We’re all of questionable existence around here, anyway. I’m almost certainly the product of Google Labs.

    Nah, I met Epi in person when I was in Seattle recently. So there’s at least two verifiable non-bots posting here. :o)

  45. HA! “Lonewacko” is the correct capitalization!

    …of course, that probably means I need to start typing it wrong. Whatever.

    Shut the fuck up, Lonewacko.

  46. I happen to know that the person you met was hired to impersonate the Internet persona, Episiarch.

  47. They could go native, like a bunch of Alexander’s troops did. I saw an article in National Geographic once about a remote Afghan tribe whose dialect contained a strong Greek influence, and who still worshipped Greek gods.

    Xeones,

    Sounds about right. I believe they call such locations linguistic shatterbelts. The terrain is so rugged that it resists any changes. I’ve heard there are still people with blue eyes and blonde hair in those places.

  48. It is funny to watch BO continually fuck up and embarass his supporters. If Hillary had won the election, it wouldn’t be as funny because no one would have sold her as anything beyond something that might be better than Bush. But the media and BO’s derranged supporters sold Obama as the one. The next FDR and JFK. He sent a thrill up their legs. The entire mainstream media and any number of nitwit 20 something put their entire credibility and identity behind Obama being some historically great figure. Now every day it is more and more apparent he is a nasty leftist. And they are stuck either defending him or trying to pretend they never said any of the stupid shit they did last fall.

  49. Episiarch? Fictional.

    Pro Lib? Nigerian e-mail scammer. I don’t think he even speaks english. He just writes his comments in the google translater and . . . POOF!

  50. @Xeones: I suspect it would be more like the Greco-Bactrian Empire, which ruled from Iran to Kazakhstan to India.

    Actually that’s one of the better possible outcomes for the region.

  51. “I’ve heard there are still people with blue eyes and blonde hair in those places.”

    There are blond haired and blue eyed people all over the middle east. There are more than a few in Syria.

  52. I’m not sure what specific changes his supporters expected in social policies, if they actually listened to him during the campaign.

    As a libertarian who never supported Obama but thought he might be slightly better than Bush (or even McCain), I am amazed at how anti-libertarian he has turned out to be.

    Instead of bringing the troops home from Iraq within a year, as he once promised during the campaign, he’s adopted Hillary’s plan of leaving 50,000+ there indefinitely. Instead of following Bill Clinton’s lead by returning to some semblance of matching expenditures to revenues, he’s making George W Bush look like an amateur on the reckless spending front.

    The only positive libertarian development to come out of the Obama administration so far is an easing of travel restrictions with Cuba. Given the rest of Obama’s record, I view this less as a manifestation of latent libertarian tendencies and more as a move of solidarity for his fellow Marxist dictators.

  53. Naga,

    Good memory. I always thought no one paid any attention to that joke.

  54. I haven’t been keeping up the last few months but anything that gets me stares in my universities library because I’m laughing hysterically is gonna be remembered.

  55. John,

    Afganistan is the middle east?

  56. No it is not Naga. It is Central Asia.

  57. I hanged my chad for Bush in 2000. By 2004 I knew better and wrote in Ann Archy in that election as well as the 2008 race.

    Having been sufficiently screwed by both halves of the two party duopoly, I conclude that we do not have a political system. It’s more like a political industry.

    I further conclude that we’d be better off if the oval office was entirely unoccupied compared to the mashed up sacks of crap offered by either party.

  58. I seem to recall that LW was more of a mainstream poster 6-7 years ago. For instance, see this post.

    Wow…old school.

    No it is not Naga. It is Central Asia.

    Or Southwest Asia?

    anything that gets me stares in my universities library because I’m laughing hysterically is gonna be remembered.

    I’ll have what he’s having.

  59. The poster known as “Xeones” is actually an infinite number of monkeys locked in a slow-time pocket in subspace for all eternity, banging away on laptops.

    The poster known as “Naga Sadow?” Three monkeys, fifteen minutes a day.

  60. Well, there’s little mystery to the commenter known as “Art-P.O.G.”, save the source of his occult powers.

  61. Nah, I met Epi in person when I was in Seattle recently. So there’s at least two verifiable non-bots posting here.

    Oh, great. Now the bots have advanced to the point where they’re spontaneously fabricating “eyewitness” accounts of each other to deflect suspicion….

  62. OTO, Art-POG? I love those hats.

  63. So Obama is now making noises about repealing DoMA. Wouldn’t this effectively make same sex marriage legal in all states — once the federal law that exempts state same sex marriage laws from the full faith and credit requirements of the constitution is gone?

    That would be the perfect sequel to Obamacare.

  64. kinnath – is that really something you have a huge problem with? My god, what small potatoes is this marriage debate: a tempest in a teapot.

  65. I’m generally a non-voting libertarian, but I’m getting damned close to voting a straight Republican ticket just to punch Obama zombies in the head.

    I really don’t want to, but the pleasure derived from punching Obama zombies is too much to overcome.

  66. If you’re a libertarian and “disappointed” by Obama then you’re just a dumbfuck because he hasn’t done anything he didn’t promise to do during his campaign. If anything his actions have been decidedly less liberal than he promised. So sorry you weren’t paying attention.

    The only sticking point is with the stimulus money, which is the source of a lot of Obama bashing from libertarians. Either you accept that this was necessary or you don’t. Personally I feel whining about the stimulus as if it’s some sort of nefarious Obama plan and not a necessary response to a financial collapse is to be misinformed and unfair.

  67. Xeones,

    Not three monkeys. Just one. That damn dirty ape who’s gonna take humanity down!

    “In this world gone mad, we won’t spank the monkey. The monkey will spank us.”

  68. whining about the stimulus as if it’s some sort of nefarious Obama plan

    It was a Bush plan, too. I didn’t realize you were such a huge fan of W.

  69. Craig,

    Yours is the superior riposte.

    JB,

    Divided we stand, united we fall. I’ll vote straight GOP in 2010. It’s our only hope for change.

  70. Art POG,

    What? What occult powers? Personally, I’m a son of Zeus. The source of my powers of annoyance are mighty indeed.

  71. If you vote for any Republican, ever, you’re a moron. You don’t have to love Democrats to realize how corrupt and anti-freedom the GOP is.

  72. Pro Lib,

    This isn’t 1994. You sure about that?

  73. kinnath – is that really something you have a huge problem with?

    No, but the senior citizen contingent that is smacking Obama’s balls over Obamacare is also one of the most strident groups against same sex marriage.

    That would make two in a row where Obama is really pissing off a big part of the Democratic base.

  74. If you vote for any Republican or Democrat, ever, you’re a moron.

    Fixed.

  75. Tony,

    The TARP was the response to the financial collapse. The stimulus, most of which hasn’t even been spent, was just the Dems looting the government as opposed to TARP where Bush and later the Dems looted the Treasury for Goldman Sachs.

  76. “He is everything his supporters accused Bush of being.”

    Chickenhawk!

  77. kinnath – oh, I gotcha. I personally think we should start a feature around here called “When the Left Eats Itself”.

    We could do blacks v. gays on prop 8.

    Old people v. young people on welfare payments.

    It’d be awesome.

  78. Also the circus that results from repealing DoMA would halt just about all other work on the hill . . which is just fine by me.

  79. By the way, Pro Lib. How go the preparations for Lab Whore Day? Tiring, no doubt.

  80. If you vote for any Republican, ever, you’re a moron. You don’t have to love Democrats to realize how corrupt and anti-freedom the GOP is.

    Wow. Do you get a check from the DNC?

    Because the last person or group on the planet that needs to point to anyone, GOP or not, and scream corrupt is the DNC.

    I don’t know what you smoke, but I’d like a sample. I can sell that shit and make a fortune around here.

  81. “That’s your best comment in five years.”

    And a room full of monkeys with typwriters…

  82. It was a Bush plan, too. I didn’t realize you were such a huge fan of W.

    Yeah and you’d think that such consensus among espousers of wildly divergent economic philosophies on the need for massive stimulus would indicate that perhaps it was necessary. The federal government saved your sorry ass from the bread line and all you do is bitch bitch bitch.

  83. OTO, Art-POG? I love those hats.

    Thanks. I got it at a department store in Germany.

    What? What occult powers?

    OK, maybe not “occult”, and maybe not “powers”, but you get the idea.

    BTW, I met anonymity guy in real like, and he’s basically Marlon Brando’s character from Apocalypse Now. “Do you find my methods unsound?”

    If you vote for any Republican, ever, you’re a moron.

    Good job. You topped JB for the WTF? of this thread.

  84. Naga,

    No, it isn’t 1994. It’s 1994 rebooted, with edgier characters, gritter scripts, and supermodel stars. And with less trust of the GOP and even more distrust of the Democrats. What happened to that fiscal responsibility gong they were banging during the Bush years? joe used to go on and on about that, and it was complete bullshit. The GOP is horrific and doesn’t deserve control of the government, but I’ll willingly hand them Congress. Something’s got to stop this spendathon.

  85. I worry about the backlash in 2010 and 2012. There are millions of morons out there like Tony. After Obama crashes and burns and the entire country vows never to vote Dem again two things will happen. First, the Republicans will go bizerk and do God knows what. And second, rather than doing any soul searching or self reflection, the Tony’s of the world will conclude the Obamasiah failed because the evil interests groups and Republicans were allowed to destroy him. They will conclude that the only sollution once they get back into power is to drop all pretents of Democracy and just destroy their enemies. The Left went fucking insane during the Bush years. How fucking nuts are they going to be after Obama crashes and burns and they get kicked out of power again?

  86. Shut the fuck up, Tony.

  87. wildly divergent economic philosophies

    Yer a riot, Tony.

  88. Naga,

    I’m married, dude. However, I believe that the Urkobold is judging candidates for Lab Whore of the Year for Lab Whore Day 2010.

  89. No, it isn’t 1994. It’s 1994 rebooted, with edgier characters, gritter scripts, and supermodel stars. And with less trust of the GOP and even more distrust of the Democrats.

    You forgot to mention the shaky, handheld camera.

  90. What has Obama failed at?

    Given the sheer number of crises he inherited I’d say he’s doing an adequate job. But then again I paid attention during the campaign and didn’t expect him to be a libertarian zealot, which bizarrely is what you all seem to be complaining about.

  91. wildly divergent economic philosophies

    Ok, i laughed out loud. Keynesian economics is wildly divergent from… Keynesian economics? Really, dude?

    Tony, face it: Obama is Bush with better PR and a tan.

  92. My bet is they are good, unless of course Pakistan goes hostile and we have 100,000 people in the middle of Asia with no way to supply them or extract them. That will put an end to that quagmire.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Massacre_of_Elphinstone%27s_army

  93. Art-P.O.G.,

    You’re right–good catch. I just hope the finale is better with this reboot.

  94. Having been sufficiently screwed by both halves of the two party duopoly, I conclude that we do not have a political system. It’s more like a political industry.

    It’s definitely a political industry now, and no longer even a pretense to a representative political system.

    This was more or less confirmed the other day by a major national newspaper saying that there is no point in members of Congress reading the bill because they’re too stupid to understand it.

  95. Tony, face it: Obama is Bush with better PR and a tan.

    And a teleprompter. Don’ forget the teleprompter.

  96. Tony, face it: Obama is Bush with better PR and a tan.

    RACIFASCIST

  97. “cash for clunkers” is, by definition, a failure.

  98. I just hope the finale is better with this reboot.

    Also, i was REALLY disappointed in the sex scenes.

  99. “I conclude that we do not have a political system. It’s more like a political industry.”

    I wish I could argue with you.

  100. Shut the fuck up Tony.

  101. The stimulus that did nothing to stimulate and created $700 billion in debt and is wildly unpopular is a failure.

  102. The federal government saved your sorry ass from the bread line and all you do is bitch bitch bitch.

    I take back my eariler STFU. Keep it coming Tony, this is comedy gold.

  103. I fully stand by my comment about Republicans. I mean for the love of fuck has any of you paid any attention to anything in your entire lives? When the best guy the GOP can come up with in 40 years is Richard Nixon I think there’s a problem.

    Let me guess: none of the corporatist corruption, religious pandering, torture supporting, phony warmongering, wiretapping, economy destroying matters because they believe in no higher taxes ever. Why don’t you go jerk yourselves off to low taxes you simpleminded wingnuts.

  104. “wildly divergent economic philosophies”

    Huh???

    Which philosophies are those Tony? Do tell… This should be good.

  105. “Let me guess: none of the corporatist corruption, religious pandering, torture supporting, phony warmongering, wiretapping, economy destroying matters because they believe in no higher taxes ever. Why don’t you go jerk yourselves off to low taxes you simpleminded wingnuts.”

    Because the Democrats repealed the Patriot Act, stopped bailing out Wall Street, ended the phony wars and stopped all the wiretapping once they go in power. You are funny Tony.

  106. Why don’t you go jerk yourselves off to low taxes you simpleminded wingnuts.

    Would you like a video?

  107. Cesar, is that you?

  108. Shut the fuck up, Tony.

  109. Why don’t you go jerk yourselves off to low taxes you simpleminded wingnuts.

    It’s gonna have to wait till i get home.

  110. Cesar, is that you?

    Hm. Good eye.

  111. Oh fuck Tony… You’re brilliant:

    “none of the corporatist corruption”

    Like this??

    “religious pandering”

    You mean like Obama, right?

    “torture supporting, phony warmongering”

    Did you miss Obama’s War Mongering?

    “wiretapping”

    I suppose that practice had “ended” now, huh?

    “economy destroying”

  112. Sean,

    Bush said the bailout goes against everything he believes in. What about redistributing wealth to the top 1% under the assumption that it will magically result in more jobs is Keynesian?

  113. “economy destroying”

    Say WHAT???

    Jesus H. Christ, Tony. You have to be a spoof.

  114. So Reason Editors, how’s that Obama thing working out for you? Do you still think punishing Barr for the sins of Bush was the right way to go?

  115. Oh, man, if Tony is Cesar, just get that man a MacArthur grant.

  116. You think I like that Obama hasn’t waived a magic wand and reversed the entire Bush administration yet? What exactly are you arguing? The Dems are slightly less bad on liberty, therefore we might as well support the GOP who is worse?

  117. Fix. Me.

  118. Wot the hell? How can tags spill?

  119. close tag?

  120. Good one, Sean.

  121. FDor the love of god, Tony, SHUT THE FUCK UP!!!

  122. Gawddammit Tony, I expect mah vittles to be on the table when I git home from werk! Now git yer ass off that dam puter and come over here! *SMACK*

  123. Last week, Chris Matthews of MSNBC had as a guest on his show the protester who showed up with a gun at the New Hampshire town meeting. Matthews berated him thus:

    “OK, you brought a sign that says, ‘The tree of liberty has to be watered with the blood of tyrants,’ and you’re carrying a goddamn gun at a presidential event. I think those things make people wonder what you’re about.”

    I can help you with that, Chris. A few years ago I wrote the following: “Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, – That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government.”

    Hope that helps.

    Regards,
    Tom Jefferson, fascist

  124. Hey, Tony, nice of you to bring up the wiretapping issue! That was the reason I voted for Obama in the primary: because he’d made a lot of libertarian statements and a lot of strong promises about actually supporting the Bill of Rights, and because it wasn’t until it was too late that I discovered “promise to filibuster” was actually code for “will vote for”.

    Remember that promise? About not letting telecoms get away with it after they caved in and broke federal law by supporting unconstitutional unwarranted wiretaps? That was my first big clue that I couldn’t trust Obama. It’s too bad that you weren’t able to reach the same conclusion on as little data, but don’t worry, he keeps adding *lots* more evidence, and you’ll catch on eventually.

  125. “No, but the senior citizen contingent that is smacking Obama’s balls”

    Racists.

  126. Cesar, is that you?

    Hm. Good eye.

    What the fuck? I brought that up months ago.

  127. Sean, you’re dumber than a box of self-fisting midgets.

  128. EAP what’s with your handle. Do you have to remind yourself that Sarah Palin is an incompetent narcissistic psychopath? Yeah Sarah Palin, she’s a real good argument for supporting the GOP. Did you know they ran that airheaded theocratic cunt for VP last time around?

  129. “Bush said the bailout goes against everything he believes in. What about redistributing wealth to the top 1% under the assumption that it will magically result in more jobs is Keynesian?”

    Bush SAID a lot of things, you fucktard. Are you now telling me that Bush’s words were to be trusted? Guess he didn’t lie at all about Iraq then, huh? Or does he only lie when what he’s saying might conflict with your version of reality?

    And I’m a little confused with the second half of that comment, you’re referencing Obama, right? Massive government spending is Keynesian in any case, but considering the great bulk of all “stimulus” has gone directly to major investment banks like 2nd Highest Obama Campaign Donor; Goldman Sachs…. I’m not exactly sure what you’re trying to suggest as a distinction here.

  130. And again last week. I was roundly pooh-poohed (and not in the way Tony likes).

  131. Shut the fuck up, Xeones.

  132. Tony, there’s a time where you’ve made enough of an ass of yourself and proven your ignorance. The time to stop talking is before that. Unfortunately, you’ve blown right past that line. So… it may be time to cut your losses. Yeah.

  133. Xeones, do you think Tony prefers the Cleveland Steamer, or the Hot Carl?

  134. What the fuck? I brought that up months ago.

    I missed it, therefore it didn’t happen.

  135. Goddammit, Warty.

  136. “The federal government saved your sorry ass from the bread line and all you do is bitch bitch bitch.”

    It didn’t save my ass. I’m rich. But it seems to be shoving its hand waaaaaay up my ass looking for loose change.

  137. Warty, why are self-fisting midgets dumb? Nobody loves you like yourself.

  138. Xeones,

    You lack my authority and gravitas. And you have a pansy-ass Greek cognomen rather than a Latin one.

    I hope it is Cesar.

  139. Sean, because they’re not even wearing latex gloves. Jesus Christ, do I have to explain everything?

  140. Free minds and pissing matches. Midget pissing matches!

  141. “Shut the fuck up Tony.”

    Even the Lonewacko is right once every five years or so. But you? Not so much.

  142. Can we please confine Tony and Lonewhacko to posting on a single thread so the rest of us can avoid it?

  143. “Why don’t you go jerk yourselves off to low taxes you simpleminded wingnuts.”

    I prefer fat, pasty-white rednecks engaged in testicular play.

    Wanna snuggle?

  144. It didn’t save my ass. I’m rich.

    Oh, one of those “Monocle Minarchists”, eh? ๐Ÿ˜‰

  145. Nah John… As much as Tony is a mindless dolt, flame wars are what the internet is all about.

  146. I hope it is Cesar.

    Me too. If he’s for real, he has ideological blinders on. If he’s Cesar, he’s a fucking genius.

  147. Well in defense of Tony, he’s right about the WoD. What’s Lonewacko right about?

    ….

    ….

  148. If he’s for real, he has ideological blinders on. If he’s Cesar, he’s a fucking genius.

    I HAVE BEEN SAYING THIS FOR MONTHS

  149. Lonewacko is right that Democrats suck. His reasons are mostly retarded, but that doesn’t count.

  150. Jesus, Xeones, calm down. Don’t be so pissed that you got scooped.

  151. Tony is right about one thing:

  152. Xeones may be Cesar, too. In fact, this blog may have only two real commenters–me and Cesar.

  153. It’s retarded to compare LW to Tony. Really, it just shows how off in the head the person making such a comparison is. I don’t agree with Tony’s views all the time, but his views certainly more rationally reflect a big chunk of the ideological pie out there, while LW couldn’t make a point with a pencil.

  154. I’m going to scoop your spleen out with a rusty spoon, Warty.

  155. I HAVE BEEN SAYING THIS FOR MONTHS

    Ha ha, I’m sure you have. Ha ha, and I’m sure I just “magically” missed it every time, and not just because I’m 7 hours ahead of EST and come early or late to every thread and sometimes miss a whole day’s worth.

    And what Warty said. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  156. Xeones may be Cesar, too.

  157. Xeones, do you think Tony prefers the Cleveland Steamer, or the Hot Carl?

    If you must know, what I *really* enjoy is waking up in the morning and having my redneck boyfriend treat me to a warm, delicious brown shower after pounding a 12 pack of Budweiser the night before!

  158. “EAP what’s with your handle.”

    Great way to work in yet another DNC talking point.

    Palin is an idiot. I’ve said that p[lat out to you before, but you’re a little slow. But that’s okay because that just means that your on the death panel’s short list. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    I chose the handle nearly a year ago because for about two weeks straight every fucking story at reason (I’m looking at you Weigel and Cavanaugh) was about Palin.

    But more to the point here. Tony, you are an idiot and hence forth, I will never post in response to you anything other than Shut the Fuck Up Tony or its equivalent. And I respectfully ask all other H&R posters to consider doing the same.

    Now shut up and suck my balls, Tony.

    BTW spellcheck suggests weasel for Weigel. Funny that.

  159. The real Mr. Nice Guy would never have abbreviated his name.

  160. And, uh, what MNG said.

    In fact, this blog may have only two real commenters–me and Cesar.

    Am I real?

  161. Warty is a real person. I have photographic evidence. He sent this to me just the other day.

  162. Tony
    I think if I were a libertarian I would have to find the Democrats worse on some issues (gun rights for example) and the Republicans worse on others (defense spending of blowing cops).

    Now which one I would find worse would be a function of which issues I felt most crucial. For example I’ve argued that criminal justice matters are the most important since the worst thing the government can do vis-a-vis the individual citizen is to deprive them of their life or liberty via direct force, and that the Dems are superior (read: less bad) when compared to the GOP.

  163. Xeones, I’m going to cave in the roof of your car with my kettlebell.

  164. Tony isn’t real; LoneWacko is all too real.

  165. Pro
    I used to never abbreviate it, but when I lost the bet and had to post as Crow-Eating Dumbass I started to just post CWD. I found it much easier and started doing the MNG abbreviation.

    I figure everyone will know it means Mr. Nice Guy because of my always pleasant and civil demeanor…

  166. Warty, the closest thing you have to a kettlebell is that growth on your back.

  167. Warty | August 17, 2009, 3:46pm | #
    Why don’t you go jerk yourselves off to low taxes you simpleminded wingnuts.

    Would you like a video?

    If I say yes will you hold it against me?

    I already masturbate to lower taxes. I have to use less drug raids and less trampling of civil liberties lately taxes just aren’t enough.

  168. “Oh, one of those “Monocle Minarchists”, eh? ;)”

    No. Just thankful for the labors of my ancesters. And of course their legion of slaves.

  169. Seriously, Xeones, sorry.

    I didn’t mean to hurt you
    I’m sorry that I mad you cry
    I didn’t want to hurt you
    I’m just a jealous guy

    Bryan Ferry version.

    Wait, what?

  170. John | August 17, 2009, 3:37pm | #
    I worry about the backlash in 2010 and 2012. There are millions of morons out there like Tony. After Obama crashes and burns and the entire country vows never to vote Dem again …

    John, I generally agree with you. But here’s a different pessimistic scenario: The folks who voted for BHO will “reason” that the Dems haven’t had enough time to implement their change — after all, they *did* inherit quite a mess, which point will be trotted out ad nauseum. (Moreover, there’s considerable precedent for throwing more money/laws at problems.) The true believers will not be able to let it go, simply because their ideal is too big/pure to fail.

  171. “Well in defense of Tony, he’s right about the WoD. What’s Lonewacko right about?”

    That Reason’s editors attend coctail parties.

  172. oops…I made you cry.

    And of course their legion of slaves.

    That’s it. Gimme some reparations. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  173. I’ve taken the first steps to solipsistic enlightenment. Well, not quite solipsism. ‘Cause there’s Cesar and me. What do they call that?

    MNG,

    “Who is it?” Yossarian shouted anxiously at Doc Daneeka as he ran up, breathless and limp, his somber eyes burning with a misty, hectic anguish. “Who’s in the plane?”

    “McWatt,” said Sergeant Knight. “He’s got the two new pilots with him on a training flight. Doc Daneeka’s up there, too.”

    “I’m right here,” contended Doc Daneeka, in a strange and troubled voice, darting an anxious look at Sergeant Knight.

    “Why doesn’t he come down?” Yossarian exclaimed in despair. “Why does he keep going up?”

    “He’s probably afraid to come down,” Sergeant Knight answered, without moving his solemn gaze from McWatt’s solitary climbing airplane. “He knows what kind of trouble he’s in.”

    And McWatt kept climbing higher and higher, nosing his droning airplane upward evenly in a slow, oval spiral… A white parachute popped open suddenly in a surprising puff. A second parachute popped open a few moments later and coasted down, like the first… The plan continued south for thirty seconds more, following the same pattern, familiar and predictable now, and McWatt lifted a wing and banked gracefully around into his turn.

    “Two more to go,” said Sergeant Knight. “McWatt and Doc Daneeka.”

    “I’m right here, Sergeant Knight,” Doc Daneeka told him plaintively. “I’m not in the plane.”

    “Why don’t they jump?” Sergeant Knight asked, pleading aloud to himself. “Why don’t they jump?”

    “It doesn’t make sense,” grieved Doc Daneeka, biting his lip. “It just doesn’t make sense.”

    But Yossarian understood suddenly why McWatt wouldn’t jump, and went running uncontrollably down the whole length of the squadron after McWatt’s plane, waving his arms and shouting up at him imploringly to come down, McWatt, come down; but no one seemed to hear, certainly not McWatt, and a great, choking moan tore from Yossarian’s throat as McWatt turned again, dipped his wings once in salute, decided oh, well, what the hell, and flew into a mountain.

  174. Thanks, Art. I feel better now.

  175. I think if I were a libertarian I would have to find the Democrats worse on some issues (gun rights for example) and the Republicans worse on others (defense spending of blowing cops).

    Exactly, I don’t expect libertarians here to like Democrats, but at this point in history it’s not a matter of minor policy differences, it’s a matter of civilization itself. It’s like everyone’s living in a time warp where the GOP is still the cuddly corporatist warmongering party of daddy Bush and not the neo-fascist corporatist warmongering know-nothing party of Bush Jr.

    I simply share former Nixon counsel John Dean’s opinion of the current GOP: you should never vote for any Republican, ever.

  176. That Reason’s editors attend coctail parties.

    Yeah and I always detect a hint of envy…almost as if Lonewacko wsihes he were invited to fancy cocktail parties…any excuse to wear that t-shirt with the tuxedo design printed on the front.

  177. Xeones, I’m going to sneak into your house while you’re away and short-sheet your bed.

  178. it’s not a matter of minor policy differences, it’s a matter of civilization itself.

    No, it’s not, you silly, silly little man.

  179. it’s a matter of civilization itself

    Shut the fuck up, Tony, you hyperventilating queen.

  180. wishes*…dammit…I need a vacation.

    MNG = Tony?

    Not even close.

    Xeones,

    I’m glad you feel better. That theory was too crackerjack. I should’ve known you’d beat me to it. :::hanging off rope ladder attached to ascending helicopter::: “You win this time!”

  181. Well, since all the existing Libertarians are here, why not take a vote?

  182. I don’t think they should let people join the Army, or probably any armed service, if they haven’t first read Catch-22.

  183. “Yeah and I always detect a hint of envy…almost as if Lonewacko wsihes he were invited to fancy cocktail parties”

    I always sense that too.

  184. Tony is MNG’s differently abled little brother that MNG feels to the need to defend.

  185. And can only wonder in horror what types of parties he actually attends.

  186. The GOP has been riding the stupid train a lot. Maybe this started with Agnew and the hate on “pointy-headed intellectuals.”

  187. Tony.

    I’ve already explained to you in no uncertain terms that the Democrats are JUST as much corporatist war-mongers who are ok with torture and neo-fascism.

    In fact, arguing from a purely economic stand point, you could say that they are worse in the neo-fascism department, what with Obama firing CEOs of private corporations and using $1.5 Trillion+ in taxpayer stolen dollars to bailout campaign supporters and take over large chunks of the US Economy.

    I’m shocked that you’d vote for any Democrats ever given the kinds of things you claim you’re against (like corporatism). The reality is, however – you’re not against any of that… you just want your team to win.

  188. Have you ever been around someone so crazy you could smell it on them–the damp stink of cackling desperation, the cat-piss reek of self-serving fantasy, the sweet gangrene of an infected mind ruined by constantly crashing against a reality it refuses to understand or accept?

    There a reason LoneWacko doesn’t get invited to cocktail parties.

  189. The GOP has been riding the stupid train a lot.

    The GOP is a combination of fundies who believe thinking and learning leads to doubt and doubt leads to eternal hellfire, and middle management drones who read Tom Peters and tell themselves their very ignorance is their greatest asset, because they don’t know what conventional wisdom considers possible, so they ask for (and get) the impossible.

    What of it? I’m not a Republican.

  190. Catch-22 is a great book, and I happened to like the movie too. I heard Heller did a sequel?

  191. And the Democrats are intellectuals. No on this planet. Perhaps elsewhere?

  192. MNG,

    Yes. Naturally, it’s nowhere near as good as the original.

  193. What of it? I’m not a Republican.

    Ah, but Tony (and many others i know, even) live in a binary world, where if you do not support Obama you ARE a Republican, whatever you may say to the contrary. The fact that you say you’re not is just further evidence that Republicans are liars.

  194. There a reason LoneWacko doesn’t get invited to cocktail parties.

    Word. It’s a vicious cycle.*

    *But with dark comic potential!

  195. Sean
    I think what’s wrong with your view is that when people look back at the fascists in horror they don’t think of their industrial policy, they think of making their political opponents drink castor oil and such…

    I mean, the Nazi’s drove around in cars, but that doesn’t make cars bad. D’inesh D’Souza called this sort of thinking argument ad Hitlerum…

  196. Pro
    The Democrats at least pay some symbolic deference to intellectualism instead of hating on it as a wicked form of “elitism.” That is meaningful. If you are a intellectual it’s hard to identify with a party that actively sets out to antagonize someone with your tastes, mannerisms, etc…

  197. MNG, are you obliquely defending fascist economic policy?

  198. Sean,

    Forgive me if I’ve given the wrong impression. I’m a very strong liberal and thus am represented by a minority of Democrats in Congress. They do many, many things I don’t like. But the strongest and best-informed criticism of Democrats comes from the left. If I’m on a lefty board I’m very critical of Dems. Here I feel like I have to bash the GOP just to even things out a bit. There is nothing to admire about the current party makeup and frankly I haven’t heard anyone claim that there is. I seriously don’t understand what a libertarian could possibly admire in the GOP except for some of the same irrational reasons their own constituents do.

    And yes I want my team to win because, given only two choices, I prefer the one least likely to turn my country into a banana republic with nukes.

  199. “I think what’s wrong with your view is that when people look back at the fascists in horror they don’t think of their industrial policy, they think of making their political opponents drink castor oil and such…”

    I actually think that this is more the way that Americans think of Fascism more than anything else.

    Let’s try not to forget that the Italians invented the term, and the Spanish & French also employed the system.

    But I was really responding to Tony. Fascism employed a corporatist economic system (not unlike ours in virtually any respect). But corporatism isn’t enough to be “fascist” – for that you have to include the jackboots.

    We don’t have the jackboots in the US, but we didn’t have the gestapo under Bush either.

    So if we’re going to talk “fascism” in the US we have to just talk about Corporatism, no? In that case, I think the Dems win hands down.

  200. TAO
    I’m just tired of this game where people say “hey, you know who was concerned about (for example) obesity in the citizenry? The FASCISTS!” And these people hope you make the connection that people concerned about that=fascists.

    I mean, if the only thing Mussolini had done was a stimulus package, do you really think fascist would be the epithet it is now?

  201. Banana Republic – racist or not?

    Discuss.

  202. “The GOP has been riding the stupid train a lot. Maybe this started with Agnew and the hate on “pointy-headed intellectuals.”

    Of course intellectuals have caused a lot of pain, stupidity and death and destruction over the last 200 years. Is there a more intellectual event than the French Revolution? That and its progeny revolutions and utopian ideals have killed 100s of millions and caused untold suffering.

    Intellectuals should always be held at arms’ length. Intellectuals have a bad habbit of indulging in Utopianism. Yeah there is the occasional Madison, or Hayak or Hamilton. But then there are also the Marxs who do real damage.

  203. I mean, the Nazi’s drove around in cars, but that doesn’t make cars bad.

    Cars pollute. Why do you hate the environment so, you fascist?

  204. MNG – given that, as Sean said, you have two parts to fascism:

    jackbooter nationalism + economic corporatism

    And under we have never had the former, when people invoke fascist, they mean the latter.

    The problem is that the castor oil comes out as a manifestation of the former to intimidate the populace into accepting the latter.

  205. I’m re-reading The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, and I ran across a bit talking about the Volkswagen. Hitler apparently had some input on the design of the original Beetle.

    So, if you’re driving around in a New Beetle, you’re driving Hitler’s car. Not just one designed during the Third Reich, but one that may have his design elements in it. Creepy.

    MNG,

    I think the GOP is anti-academia, especially when it comes to liberal arts academics. I don’t think it’s particularly anti-intellectual in any other sense, though the fundamentalist extreme has a definite anti-science bend. But that’s a minority, and the left has the same thing with some of the more radical greens.

  206. “I prefer the one least likely to turn my country into a banana republic”

    Yeah, I’m a fan of that. Cept, I’m also a fan of not turning the country in to the Zimbabwean version of the Soviet Union.

  207. Sean
    This game could be played forever. For example, the fascists loved to proclaim the wonders of God, country and the military. Which contemporary US party does that sound most like?

    The actual fascist movements had many characteristics. One could abstract out any one, or set, match them to a modern movement, and call that movement fascists I guess.

  208. Is there a more intellectual event than the French Revolution?

    The American one?

  209. I don’t think they should let people join the Army, or probably any armed service, if they haven’t first read Catch-22.

    And Slaughterhouse Five.

  210. MNG,

    There needs to be a lot of skepticism of educated know it alls who aim to run every aspect of our country and our lives. When shows up with a grand scheme to solve all our problems, they are selling snake oil. Just because they have a PHD, doesn’t make it anything other than snake oil.

  211. Who was it who said there were things so stupid only intellectuals could believe them? Oh, Orwell. Thanks, Google.

  212. “you have two parts to fascism”

    That’t the problem with this goofy view; there are many characteristics to the historical fascists.

    Pro
    You can take a rough indicator like who they nominate for President. Say what you will, but usually the Democratic candidate has better intellectual credentials and is better spoken. For some reason lacking that is not something the GOP voters will hold against you much…

  213. Say what you will, but usually the Democratic candidate has better intellectual credentials…

    W went to Harvard and Yale.

  214. “Is there a more intellectual event than the French Revolution?
    The American one?”

    Not even close. The French Revolution claimed to reset the clock to year one and completely make over society. The American revolution was a conservative revolution aimed at restoring the rights Americans felt they always had as English subjects.

    “the fascists loved to proclaim the wonders of God, country and the military.”

    What fascist movement was religious? The Nazi’s were atheists or held wierdo occult nordic pagan views. They hated the church.

  215. John
    TAO has made my point for me. Thank god we had all those intellectuals involved in our revolution…

  216. “What fascist movement was religious?”

    Uh, Franco?

  217. What the hell are BO’s academic credentials? He was editor of the Harvard law Review. BFD. There is one every year. He never clerked for a judge, was never a successful attorney and never held an important position in government or private practice. BO hadn’t done shit since law school beyond run for office and write books about himself.

  218. Thank god we had all those intellectuals involved in our revolution…

    You mean the smugglers and slave owners like Hamilton and Jefferson and Washington?

  219. “The Democrats at least pay some symbolic deference to intellectualism instead of hating on it as a wicked form of “elitism.””

    Intellectualism and elitism are two distictly different things.

    Examples:

    Thomas Sowell — intellectual.

    Al Gore — elitist.

  220. That’t the problem with this goofy view; there are many characteristics to the historical fascists.

    If you want to be nitpicky, fine, but broadly speaking, socialist-nationalism with a corporatist sheen is the standard.

    Do you have other substantively different criteria for defining the word?

  221. MNG,

    I haven’t seen much sign of true intellect in the Democratic candidates–they just get acclaimed as intellectuals. Frankly, we haven’t seen anyone brilliant in the White House in a long, long time.

    TAO is right. The American Revolution absolutely was an intellectual one, with the revolt based on a good understanding of history, political philosophy, ethics, and even economics.

  222. “John
    TAO has made my point for me. Thank god we had all those intellectuals involved in our revolution…”

    Thank God we had a mix of those and practical people. And thank God those intellectuals understood how the world actually worked and didn’t try to remake society. Unchecked intellectuals gives you the French Revolution.

  223. John
    If you want to maintain that Hitler did not invoke God and country, be my guest.

    Mussolini fooled with anti-clericism in his newspaper days, but he was seen as a clearly better choice than the materialist communists which he opposed.

    Franco actively invoked the image of himself protecting Catholicism from Communism.

    You don’t know what you’re talking about.

    1. If there is God, may he strike me down where I speak!

  224. The French Revolution claimed to reset the clock to year one and completely make over society. The American revolution was a conservative revolution aimed at restoring the rights Americans felt they always had as English subjects.

    What kind of goalpost moving is this? You cannot have conservative intellectuals now? Tell that to WFB and Burke.

  225. Too much intellectualism in the US is the equivalent of “What do business owners know about running their businesses, or parents about raising their children? I’m a junior at Hudson University, majoring in Lesbian Peace Studies with a GPA of 2.68. Kneel before me and worship me as a god, you ignorant cattle, for I am the end product of thousands of years of human intellectual and moral progress, and compared to me, you are a farm animal.”

  226. You know what I’d love?

    If we quit assuming that all Ph.D’s are “intellectuals”.

    I’ve got a Masters, I know a few others do around here, some might have Ph.D’s as well… Seriously though, has anyone who’s spent a significant amount of time in Academia not figured out that a Ph.D – like any education – says relatively little about a person’s intellect.

    A lot of ‘highly educated’ people are retarded and have the same logical failings as anyone else. Additionally, a lot of highly educated people may know quite a lot about their particular subject but dick all about anything else. I often think of my first composition professor in undergrad, who I called “doctor” on my first lesson with him.

    To paraphrase his response; “Cut the doctor shit, only pretentious assholes want to be called that.” Still holds true, as it turns out.

  227. TAO
    The fascist movement in Spain for example could hardly be said to be characterized by its corporatist policy.

    C’mon man, you’re talking about something you don’t know much about either. Glenn Beck specials don’t count.

  228. You mean the smugglers and slave owners like Hamilton and Jefferson and Washington?

    Yes, but well-read, intellectual smugglers and slave owners. It’s important to read books, apparently, even if they’re outdated bilge like Keynes General Theory or Marx’s Theories of Surplus Value or the U.S Constitution. Being well-read is important to democrats like Tony.

  229. Franco was a strict Catholic. But I would say he was a fascist who happened to be Catholic. I don’t see how his devotion to the Church was essential to his fascism.

  230. Instead for just turning “conservative” in an insult, like the right did with “liberal,” the left reaches for fascist. All they really mean is “not-leftist.”

    Better insults all around are called for. But there are few things that “not-leftist” all believe. What is the common thread of the modern right other than “anti-left?”

    (The common thread for the left is, of course, redistributionism.)

  231. give it a rest, MNG. I know plenty of what I am talking about – look at any operational definition of fascism and you will see “economic corporatism/nationalist-socialism” in there. I knew you were going to be a nitpicker about this.

  232. I have multiple master’s degrees. Each one has left me less impressed with education being any more than showing a willingness to jump through arbitrary hoops.

  233. John I find it cosmically funny that the one thing I admire about Ayn Rand is the thing you dismiss–her staunch advocacy of logic and brain power.

  234. If we quit assuming that all Ph.D’s are “intellectuals”.

    What is possible the smartest and most intellectual person I know never graduate college. Degrees and intellect are not the same thing.

  235. It’s odd that for a bunch of atheists, the military honor known as the Iron Cross was so important.

  236. Hey, wait a second. Franco was a Catholic. Mussolini was a Catholic. Hitler was a Catholic. I’ve never noticed that before.

  237. “Each one has left me less impressed with education being any more than showing a willingness to jump through arbitrary hoops.”

    Me too… Though that observation started when I was in high school. Although I’d always been an “A” student, I didn’t do all that much of my homework because it was repetitive bullshit that mostly just wasted my time. Watching the teachers’ pets gradegrub was a mildly amusing way to learn that for most of formal education “success” is equivalent to being the best-trained seal in the group.

  238. “What kind of goalpost moving is this? You cannot have conservative intellectuals now? Tell that to WFB and Burke.”

    Of course you can. But so what? On the whole intellectuals have done a lot of damage to the world because they have a bad habbit of being utopian. In that sense, Republicans are not “anti intellectual” they are anti utopian intellectual.

  239. Franco was a Catholic. Mussolini was a Catholic. Hitler was a Catholic.

    And where does the Catholic church stand on economic/social policy outside of abortion?

  240. The GOP has its own vast propaganda machine.

    It is unabashedly anti-intellectual.

    It panders to religious fundamentalists for votes.

    It has an interventionist war policy, and that is very much a euphemism.

    You’re hard pressed to find many GOP pols who don’t actually defend the use of torture as US policy.

    Its economic theories are unashamedly plutocratic and pro-corporate-rule.

    Fascist is a loaded word but jesus christ how much closer can you get.

  241. whatever, John – I could point out plenty of places where intellectulism spawned great leaps of the quality of life for millions (The Renaissance, the Enlightenment, the American Revolution), but if you are just going to keep adding “-qualifiers”, there is no point.

  242. Hey, wait a second. Franco was a Catholic. Mussolini was a Catholic. Hitler was a Catholic. I’ve never noticed that before.

    You are now on Mad Max’s shitlist. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    BTW, only someone more educated about history than me could unravel the hodge-podge of secular and religious influences (Nietzsche, Norse Mythology, socialism?) than guided the Nazi ethos. It’s hard for me to think of them as just being left/right or religious/secular. I don’t think the dichotomies work right with them.

  243. My God, they must be fascists!

  244. I seriously had never noticed that the three principal leaders of old school fascism were all Catholic. I doubt it means anything at all. Certainly, at least two of the three weren’t too concerned about their Catholicism.

    Stalin was Georgian Orthodox, I think.

  245. her staunch advocacy of logic and brain power.

    Logic means nothing if your starting premises are crap.

  246. I love the left being the intellectual side of the political spectrum argument. You truly need to walk around a college and discuss a few real life issues with PhDs to get a feeling for just how far the intellectual left has its head up its ass.

    My favorite quote from the bailout bonanza was, “…the banks received a bailout so we should bailout GM and Chrysler. At least they make something.” From a PhD. in finance. How’s that for fucked up logic.

    The intellectual white tower has a brown interior. It’s full of shit.

  247. Its economic theories are unashamedly plutocratic and pro-corporate-rule.

    Given that many fascist regimes wanted to move towards autarky and considered their corporatism the “third way” between international communism and liberal capitalism, you know that this point is totally bogus.

  248. John, just because some intellectuals have done bad things doesn’t mean we should let the stupid people run things. Anti-intellectualism is the cause of utopian/authoritarian regimes anywhere for the obvious reason that intellectuals tend to question the power structure.

  249. Sure the fascists had strong, dominant Aryan women with a penchant for stiletto heels, leather, and riding crops, but does that make them bad??

  250. Smart people are libertarians. Simple! ?

  251. thanks Art!

    And go to bed! It’s after midnight!

  252. Beyond that, any amount of murderous horse shit has been foisted on the human race under the guise of science and reason. Marxism always considered itself a science. There were back in the day “fascist scientists and science courses”. Intellectuals in the early 20th Century believed and pursued policies of eugenics after Darwin became popular. Name any murderous or disastrous human ideology and you can find vanguard intellectuals at the front of the movement.

    The problem we have today is that we brand things into black and white cartoon. Science is a good brand, so anything no matter how ridiculous that is branded as science can’t be questioned. Intellectual is another good brand. So, anyone who questions the propriety of letting intellectuals run the country at the expense of anyone else is immediately branded a crazy and a fundie.

  253. Logic means nothing if your starting premises are crap.

    That’s exactly what I kept screaming while reading Ayn Rand!

  254. “The GOP has its own vast propaganda machine.”

    Which one is that Tony? Last I checked it didn’t exactly have most (or even many) newspapers or television networks on its side…

    And I know that “republicans” of any type account for (generously) 5% of the entertainment industry (you know… the industry I work in). I’d venture to say that solidly 98% of all media ordinary people are exposed to day in and day out – between news, television, music & movies reflects a decidedly pro-state bias… Of that, 80% or so is pro-Democrat in essence.

  255. Stalin was Georgian Orthodox, I think.

    Lapsed like a mofo.

  256. Sure the fascists had strong, dominant Aryan women with a penchant for stiletto heels, leather, and riding crops, but does that make them bad??

    Didn’t we agree last week a lot can be overlooked in the face of a rack as magnificent as Dyanne Thorne’s?

  257. And go to bed! It’s after midnight!

    Yeah, I’m about to. But I’m hell-bent on destroying myself. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  258. WHO IS THIS CHICK? IS SHE AN INTELLECTUAL? BECAUSE THE URKOBOLD SAW HER ON 60 MINUTES AND HAD TO TAKE A SELF DE-BATING BREAK.

  259. Some of you guys would believe anything as long as a guy in a lab coat or someone of the right class told you it was true. Further, if someone wants to go dig up Hamilton and Madison and bring them back to life I am all for letting intellectuals run things. Sadly, our entire political and intellectual class is completely broken. We are not producing any Hamiltons. We are producing morons. To quote WFB, I would rather be governed by a random selection of people in the Boston phone book than the faculty at Harvard or something like that. Our intellectual class is completely broken and decadent and has no business running a pay toilet let alone the country.

  260. no, John, not one person here would believe anything that came out of a guy wearing a lab coat.

    you are arguing with the slavish liberal devotees to “science” in your head. Just because we don’t join in your ridiculousness doesn’t believe that you can believe whatever the hell you want.

  261. *just because he was wearing a lab coat.

  262. Sean,

    There is absolutely no Democratic equivalent to the GOP propaganda machine. This is what’s so darn insidious about the likes of FOX news and rightwing radio: every other source of information on the planet is by default, without question, in bed with the Dems. As such, it’s best to avoid all other sources of information because only we at FOX are fair and balanced and have the truth.

    Now you have some minor liberal voices, say on PBS, MSNBC, and one or two radio stations, but none of them simply go along with whatever Dems want–as I said the best critics of Dems are on the left.

    But you can unarchive Rush Limbaugh or Bill O’Reilly defending the GOP for the exact same action they later trash Dems for doing. FOX and rightwing radio are without question the propaganda arm of the GOP and the primary reason it has had so much success despite being so corrupt and useless.

  263. I’ll join John in this: What passes for political intelligentsia in this country these days is pathetic. I’d give a lot to dig up some zombie 18th century thinkers.

    Cesar, you aren’t even trying.

  264. Dammit, TAO! You’ve ruined my plans. I was gonna go buy a labcoat. For science and stuff.

  265. That’s exactly what I kept screaming while reading Ayn Rand!

    What premises did she get wrong, exactly?

    this should be good.

  266. How funny that lab coats are being discussed in the same thread where Lab Whore Day was mentioned. Coincidence?

  267. Perhaps I would hold “intellectuals” in higher regard if everyone I meet doesn’t have some giant as dogmatic government program designed to take my money and my freedom away in service of the common good. If intellectuals want to run things, perhaps they ought to get their heads out of their asses. There is more common sense and wisdom to be found from the guy who fixes your car than there is in pretty much any faculty room of PHD dissertation being done in this country. That is a sorry state of affairs. But it is sorry or not the situation we find ourselves in.

  268. “Now you have some minor liberal voices, say on PBS, MSNBC, and one or two radio stations, but none of them simply go along with whatever Dems want–as I said the best critics of Dems are on the left.”

    Are you really this retarded?

    Liberals have controlled the media for virtually its entire existence.

    The VAST majority of movies you’ll ever go to implicitly accept/support liberal positions, virtually all TV does as well, I’ve yet to meet a single successful filmmaker or writer here who’s not a flaming liberal. I know a couple musicians who are independent, but largely liberal. You’ll be hard pressed to find more than a handful of actors or actresses who are “Republican” and even then you’d struggle to get them to admit it in public since it’s often a career killer.

    Being an outspoken libertarian is even hard – and I actually agree with self-professed “liberals” a good chunk of the time.

    But where the fuck did this “liberals don’t have a voice” idiocy come from!? AS far as I can tell it just cropped up in the last few months.

    Hey asshole – you have the entire news industry in print & on TV (except for Fox), you have a huge chunk of FM radio and a small slice of AM radio, you have THE ENTIRE FILM AND TELEVISION INDUSTRY!!! and damn near all the Music Industry…

    AND… You control the Whitehouse, the Senate, Congress & now effectively the Supreme Court.

    WHAT the FUCK are you talking about whining about how powerful a voice Republicans have? They don’t have shit.

  269. There is more common sense and wisdom to be found from the guy who fixes your car than there is in pretty much any faculty room of PHD dissertation being done in this country.

    oh my god, are you still planning on running your party on Joe the Plumber?

    Anyway, this quasi-“noble savage” stuff is highly ironic, given that it was airheaded “intellectuals” who gave us that piece of pap in the first place. And here’s John, swallowing it whole!

  270. Sean – someone is trolling you. You have to let it go. I think it is Cesar (thanks, Warty…and fuck you, X ๐Ÿ™‚

  271. Mussolini fooled with anti-clericism in his newspaper days, but he was seen as a clearly better choice than the materialist communists which he opposed.

    Mussolini was an anti-cleric in his newspaper days becuse he was a communist in his newspaper days.

    Fascism was what he created after he came to the conclusion that “the people” could not be trusted to carry out a proper revolution against decadent Democracy and Capitalism. Such a revolution he pretty much concluded could only happen under a strong leader with totalitarian (a word invented to describe the fascist state) powers. The aims were still essentially Marxist.

    Of course, Lenin, Stalin and Mao later came to the same conclusion about the People and the Revolution but they paid more lip service to Marxist principles.

    And, Hitler’s nazism difered from Mussolini’s fascism in many ways.

  272. What premises did she get wrong, exactly?

    The premise that her wacky economic ideas were the natural end result of unadulterated reason.

  273. And Rush Limbaugh, FWEW, was criticizing Bush on spending from about 2003 on.

    If you (Tony) think that you are included in being a good critic of the left, you need to get your brain examined. You do nothing but shill for the party and backtrack or ignore all the shit they do… It’s insanity at it’s most hilarious.

  274. that’s not a premise, Troll, that’s a conclusion.

    I don’t even know why I am letting myself get trolled here.

  275. TAO – I’m sorry – if I am getting trolled by someone who isn’t Tony, his positions are identical to those that I’d expect from the real Tony. So hard to tell sometimes.

  276. Sean,

    I didn’t say liberals don’t have a voice. I said they don’t have a propaganda machine at their disposal.

    Did it ever cross your mind that most academics, entertainers, and journalists are liberals because they’re smart and smart people tend to be liberals?

  277. bwa ha ha. Alright, someone come out and take a bow for Tony, please.

  278. Tony thinks anyone who isn’t demanding 100% taxes Right Now is a conservative, therefore Katie Couric qualifies.

    Once we started giving ‘intellectuals’ power, they stopped being intelligent and started attracting power hungry egomaniacs. As a wise intellectual once said, power corrupts.

    You want disinterested, objective intellectual pursuits? Then stop tempting them with authority.

  279. entertainers, and journalists are liberals because they’re smart and smart people tend to be liberals?

    Academics? Maybe Journalists? You’re pusing it. Entertainers are smart? *snort*

  280. I know an awfully large number of stupid liberals. I’ve noticed no particular advantage in the brains department for either major political stripe.

    Cesar must reveal himself at the appropriate time.

  281. “Did it ever cross your mind that most academics, entertainers, and journalists are liberals because they’re smart and smart people tend to be liberals?”

    HAHAHAHAHahahahahaha AHAHAHAHHAhaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa HAHAHAH LMFAO…. OMFG… OMG…. *stitches*…. oh fuck…. my god….

    Tony. Come let me introduce you to some of the few hundred entertainers and media people I know. Though I suppose given your level of intellect, I shouldn’t be too surprised if their amazing brain-power impresses you.

  282. If you can’t trust the intellectual heft of the guys who have us Dukes of Hazzard, The Movie, who can you trust?

  283. fwiw, there is plenty of extrinsic evidence via google that poster “Tony” (aka Tony Quinn) is a real person – I am just not sure whether he’s being sockpuppeted right now.

  284. “Dammit, TAO! You’ve ruined my plans. I was gonna go buy a labcoat. For science and stuff.”

    Labcoats are germy:

    http://www.mndaily.com/2009/08/11/first-year-medical-students-receive-lab-coats

  285. @ Urkobold? : Lara Logan. She looks even better in a flak jacket.

  286. Banana Republic – racist or not?

    I’m offended.

  287. It crossed my mind that most journalists are liberal because they almost invariably care more about changing the world & emotional sob-stories than truth. And now it seems they all just want to be Woodward & Bernstein and take down a Republican.

    It crossed my mind that most academics are liberals because most of them get their rocks off by dreaming up utopian worlds of centrally planned perfection. If only the “right people” (read: the academics) were in charge of everything, things would be great… Because they iz smarter than you!

    It crossed my mind that almost 100% of entertainers are liberal for the exact same reasons as the journalists – AND because they are almost all retarded. Making emotional appeals is what entertainers do! It’s what they’re good at, and why they’re successful. The name of the game here is connecting with audiences on subconscious, emotional levels – NOT on intellectual ones. (This is also why they are much more influential than talk radio hosts in what premises people accept).

    Entertainment industry people, by and large, also are literally among the most historically, scientifically, and economically illiterate people I’ve ever had the pleasure of spending most of my living time with.

    These are people who quite often believe that a magic crystal from Sedona is going to help their Aura be more “Green”, Tony.

    I seriously hope you are even a fraction as embarrassed as you should be with that nonsense.

  288. There is absolutely no Democratic equivalent to the GOP propaganda machine.

    Every Union
    ACORN
    Center for American Progress
    GE (every rent seeking subsidiary)
    Soros and Sandler backed enterprises
    Democracy Alliance
    New Democrat Network
    Economic Policy Institute
    Media Matters for America
    People For the American Way
    EMILY’s List
    Progressive Majority
    Campus Progress
    America Votes (soros & sandler)
    Brady Campaign
    MoveOn

    There’s a fairly decent list of the larger movers of progressive propaganda. Seems like a pretty decent machine to me. I didn’t even mention the print media.

    I guess when you agree with them it isn’t propaganda.

  289. “I seriously hope you are even a fraction as embarrassed as you should be with that nonsense.”

    Just say no to Tony.

  290. I’m going to have to start saying no to Tony… but… Ech… C’mon.

  291. “Soros”

    Plundered the Jews homes as they were being gassed in the camps.

  292. Mommy!

  293. hmm,

    If you can’t recognize classic propaganda when you see it then you’re probably a victim of it. That was a really weak response. The mere fact of an organization that supports liberal causes doesn’t make it propaganda. None of those organizations has ever told me what to think, and it is a defining feature of liberalism that thought should be free. Propaganda isn’t just any old opinionmaking. It’s a specific thing and some things fit the definition and others don’t. FOX is the closest thing this country has to genuine propaganda.

  294. TAO, Sean
    It seemed like you just try to side step counter-examples that don’t fit your scheme, like Franco’s lack of corporatism. Funny that Hitler and Mussolini had no problems finding commonality in Franco’s regime…

    Most actual scholars of fascism seem to find the central feature to be irrational/a-rational hyper-nationalism.

    As you yourself note the fascists, in rhetoric and in practice, noted they were not like the socialists/communists they so hated. For one thing, they differed greatly over the concepts of class and nationalism. Socialist/communist doctrine at the time was dominated by Marx’s idea that people were really defined by their class, and that national differences were not only irrelevant but were leading distractions. Mussolini, Hitler, etc., hated this idea, in their idea the classes of a nation should realize their common nationality and work towards making the nation greater.

    Compared to libertarianism the various fascist parties were indeed less free market oriented, but of course at that time free market parties were very discredited (hell, Hayek himself makes this point in Road to Serfdom). Every major party appealing to voters was selling government control and interference in the economy; the telling thing is that the fascists were to the “right” of the other major faction (socialists/communists).

    And I know what party

  295. Tony, the fact that you don’t recognize your own propaganda is insulting our collective intelligence here. The fact that the other day you told me that you didn’t even know who George Soros was should have given you a clue.

  296. I know what party is more intoirrational nationalism is what I meant to say…

  297. If you can’t recognize classic propaganda when you see it then you’re probably a victim of it.

    Mote, eye, beam, etc.

  298. OK. Third time is the charm: I know what major US party is more into irrational nationalism today.

  299. MNG, I’ve been too engrossed in Tony’s idiocy to side-step anything you’ve said.

    The point as far as I’m concerned is that Fascism & Soviet-style Socialism have vastly more in common with each other than with either “right” or “left” moderates and nothing at all in common with libertarianism or anarchism.

    See this version of a Nolan Chart I did a while back (and have been meaning to edit/add to).

    You have to realize that government owning all means of production outright, and government controlling the means of production through corporatism is a nearly identical proposition in the de facto sense. And frankly, the nationalistic chunk of fascism isn’t particularly different than the nationalistic aspect of Russian communism…

    “Right” or “Left” is hardly a distinction when we’re talking about totalitarianism.

  300. hmmmm

    We could name right and left contributors and interest groups all day. I think Tony’s point is that in things like Fox, Washington Times, Conservative talk radio, National Review, etc., you have a propaganda machine the left cannot match.

  301. Episiarch | August 17, 2009, 2:30pm | #

    I can’t believe some of you assdrizzlers ever believed that he was something different than an “old-style tax and spend Democrat”.

    I’m still waiting for the douchebags who voted (why would you vote?!?) for Obama to say “whoops, we fucked up”.

    You didn’t have to vote for McCain–just vote for Barr or just don’t vote (like me).

    Not voting, or voting for anybody other than the two major party candidates, is an excuse for everybody to ignore your opinions.

    Actually, the libertarians actually did something right in 2008-they attempted to make a move in the primaries, via Ron Paul. Paul’s complete and total failure in the primaries just proves that libertarian philosophies are simply unpopular. You can’t win elections if only five percent-or less-of the population votes for you.

    Libertarians will NEVER have an acceptable candidate for President. They must vote for the least unacceptable candidate, or be excluded from the political process completely. In 2008, the least unacceptable was clearly Obama.

  302. MNG – Sure, the (R)’s are more into irrational nationalism in the US… But the (D)’s are more into irrational corporatism. So for my money, it’s a wash and the (R)’s irrational nationalism doesn’t affect me all that much – and in either case, neither R or D’s are that far off from each other in either the nationalistic or corporatist sense. The Patriot Act was voted for almost unanimously after all.

  303. Sean
    There’s a reason why the communists and fascists hated and fought each other so bitterly. They realize their deep divisions. Class conflict, the raison’detre of the commies, was opposed by the fascists. The commies hated nationalism, the fascists adored it.

    To say “well, both agreed on government intereference in the market so they are so similar” is like saying “they both agreed militaries were good things, so they are so similar.”

  304. I realize to some libertarians all coercion is the same, all government interference is the same, etc., but why should any non-libertarian turn a blind eye to the fact that the fascist government interference was so different in rhetoric and action from the communists, and for that matter the left in liberal democracies of the time?

    Notice how the fascists took brutal control over the unions that were beginning to flex in Italy and Germany at the time, but FDR empowered them. There are many other examples.

  305. I just LOOOOOOOVE the Dem vs GOP screeds! Do you really want to know the difference?

    GOP pols erode your civil liberties and raise your taxes, and get criticized for eroding civil liberties.

    DEM pols erode your civil liberties and raise your taxes, and get criticized for raising taxes.

    That is all.

  306. Sean W. Malone | August 17, 2009, 5:50pm | #

    see: http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/scalliwag/200908/kiss-my-apa

    tony, if you think bill oreily is a subsidiary of the R party, you’re as ignorant as all the rest of your blather implies.

    he has probably given the most balanced coverage of prezbo around. just cause he doesn’t lick his boots? really?

    and i think oreieley’s a jackass populist douchebag

  307. “I think Tony’s point is that in things like Fox, Washington Times, Conservative talk radio, National Review, etc., you have a propaganda machine the left cannot match.”

    And Tony is retarded in thinking that.

    The left has a MUCH more comprehensive propaganda machine, as well as control of virtually the entirety of the education establishment and the much more important control of all of the entertainment media.

    I’ve long made this case, but fundamentally – the entertainment media is what actually affects people’s opinions. See: John Stewart as the most overt example… But also start to think about the movies you watched as a kid – Fern Gully, perhaps. What have you been told, what premises has the entertainment you’ve watched over the years prompted you to accept without thinking that effects your mind today? I’m betting a hell of a lot.

  308. ” but FDR empowered them. There are many other examples.”

    i wish they still had fdr stamps, i never got the opportunity to spit on both sides of postage….

  309. Sean
    I just don’t think economic corporatism was the defining characterstic of the historical fascist movement in Europe. Such corporatism was engaged in by liberal democratic governments like the US, Britian, etc., that were despised by the actual fascists, while it was not embraced by regimes like Franco’s that were embraced as ideological siblings by the actual fascists.

    I think a lot of this goes back to a misunderstanding of Hayek in works like Road to Serfdom. In that book Hayek seemed to argue that government control of the economy would inevitably result in the kind of government power and totalitarianism that the hated fascists (this was just after WWII); that’s not quite the same thing as saying this stuff was the “essence” of fascism.

  310. Sean: i enjoyed it too, but damn you read fast. or i type slow…

  311. @MNG | August 17, 2009, 6:14pm | #

    Sean
    There’s a reason why the communists and fascists hated and fought each other so bitterly.

    Yes these was. The same reason that the two biggest, meanest baboons in a group beat the fuck out of each other to determine who is gonna be king shit.

    When your goal is for the entire planet to be in your thrall and subject to your twisted whims, a “this continent isn’t big enough for the two of us” mentality exists.

  312. dammit…….yes there was.

  313. If you can’t recognize classic propaganda when you see it then you’re probably a victim of it. That was a really weak response.

    Today’s lesson in irony.

    Brought to you by the letter “T” as in Tony.

  314. “The left has a MUCH more comprehensive propaganda machine, as well as control of virtually the entirety of the education establishment and the much more important control of all of the entertainment media.”

    The vast majority of the content of the entertainment media is apolitical, not focused or disciplined, and hardly rooted in helping the Democratic party specifically. The influence of the education establishment is overrated, and a great deal of their content is apolitical as well. The right wing propaganda machine, on the other hand, is much more consciously engaging in the business of trying to shape public opinion and government policy along the lines of specific talking points aiming to aid a specific political party.


  315. We could name right and left contributors and interest groups all day. I think Tony’s point is that in things like Fox, Washington Times, Conservative talk radio, National Review, etc., you have a propaganda machine the left cannot match.

    I’m not the one claiming it’s lopsided. So “doing it all day” just proves my point. Thanks.

  316. Maybe they hated each other because their ideas were so diametrically opposed? This is of course why they said they hated each other. Why not take them on their word rather than engaging in unverifiable socio-psycho speculation?

  317. Towing the lion with the Fox bashing is great. I get a kick out of the station that is slaughtering the other networks in cable, local, syndication being the bad guy all the time.

    It’s clearly because of the propaganda.

  318. hmmm
    I don’t dispute the success of Fox. I simply maintain that its news network is full of propaganda for the GOP. And yes, propaganda is more popular with the right than it is with the left, so such success is to be expected.

    As to the entertainment, Fox, including its movie division, they seem pretty apolitical to me.

  319. hmm…

    yeah cause greg gutfeld and andy levy are tools of the republicans ya know…

  320. The vast majority of the content of the entertainment media is apolitical, not focused or disciplined, and hardly rooted in helping the Democratic party specifically. The influence of the education establishment is overrated, and a great deal of their content is apolitical as well. The right wing propaganda machine, on the other hand, is much more consciously engaging in the business of trying to shape public opinion and government policy along the lines of specific talking points aiming to aid a specific political party.

    I guess that would depend on the narrowness of your definition of “political”.

    If by political you mean party-specific talking points, you might have a point.

    But if you are claiming that the entertainment industry, the media, organized labor, the education system, et al ad nauseum (basically anyone in the “opinion-making business”) are not dominated by an obvious ideology, you are either a dipstick or are intentionally obtuse.

  321. MNG: entertainment? 70% of FNC is opinion entertainment?!

  322. Now which one I would find worse would be a function of which issues I felt most crucial. For example I’ve argued that criminal justice matters are the most important since the worst thing the government can do vis-a-vis the individual citizen is to deprive them of their life or liberty via direct force, and that the Dems are superior (read: less bad) when compared to the GOP.

    The problem is that the magnitude of the difference on criminal justice is very small in policy outcomes. There are handful of Democrats that are consistently pro-reform, but when Democrats are in charge they’re about as effective in practice as the few authentically budget-concious GOP members were during the Bush administration. Some Democrats, like Biden, are worse than your average Republican. I expect bad economic policy from them, but if Democrats are useless on the stuff that I actually agree with liberals on, then they’ve got nothing to offer me, just like a fiscally irresponsible GOP.

  323. MNG | August 17, 2009, 6:31pm | #

    Maybe they hated each other because their ideas were so diametrically opposed? This is of course why they said they hated each other. Why not take them on their word rather than engaging in unverifiable socio-psycho speculation?

    Why not take them at their word????? Ok, you got me. Do I have to wear a dress tomorrow, or do you have other suitable punishment in mind for allowing myself to be spoofed.

  324. The thing that never bothered me about Fox that I dislike about the other networks is Murdoch will openly admit the news network falls in line with his views. You get Griffin or Turner to admit their bias and you might have a leg to stand on. The “conservatives are stupid” so of course propaganda works on them line is nice. Would have been more honest to just come out and say it. But that might have made you look like elitist dipshit.

    I love the argument that either side is more successful at propaganda. Did you watch the last election? Do you listen to and watch the current administration?

    Like I said, it’s only propaganda if you don’t agree with it.

  325. The funny thing is MSNBC was excited about a 61% bump in viewership, and they still didn’t even touch the gap between them and Fox. Their bump came with the Obama coverage. What do you want to bet there is a decline in viewership in their future.

    Lets not forget the rent seeking dipshitery of the parent company, of course that couldn’t have anything to do with the Obamafest that is MSNBC. CNN is just a dinosaur trading gimmick upoin gimmick to keep its head above water. (ya it’s 3D Obama and McCain!!) What a fucking joke.

  326. “is much more consciously engaging in the business of trying to shape public opinion”

    Which is, frankly, why it’s much worse propaganda.

    It’s interesting to me that many of the people around here don’t understand what actually influences people’s opinions. It’s not the “in-your-face” stuff like Fox. It’s the subtle stuff that people grow up being told over and over and over.

    You don’t need direct message – in fact, I’d venture to say, a direct message probably hurts your abilities as a propagandist. What you need is an indirect message that is present in virtually everything everyone ever sees or hears. A message like “government is there to take care of you”, for instance. It also doesn’t necessarily take a leader. We had this discussion on the District 9 thread – but when was the last time a businessman was a hero in a movie? What’s the ratio of businessmen being shown as the villain::hero? At least 100:1 in the last 50 years, wouldn’t you agree?

    The developer who might provide affordable housing for 200 people is evil, the Jason Schwartzman emo guy who saves the cute blue butterfly is the hero for all time.

    How many times have we seen that play out?

    So kids see that story in various re-tellings what… 5,000 times or so by the time they’re teenagers? And we wonder why there’s so much hatred of business, of free enterprise… And then Fox says something different. And frankly, their message isn’t even very unified. Napolitano’s show is directly at odds with most of the rest of the content on that network. Glenn Beck & O’Reilly do totally different things… Hannity has a different schtick. Sure, most of it’s retarded, but good propaganda, it is not.

  327. nice chart Sean, never realized how much i look like ayn rand

  328. Yes, well I should also stop using the term “propaganda”.

    By and large, the views expressed in any media are simply those views that the creators happen to hold. The film industry isn’t like Pravda… The “liberal”/socialist/progressive/statist-douchebag viewpoint just happens to have an ubiquitous monopoly within the industry.

    And also – what hmm said:

    “The thing that never bothered me about Fox that I dislike about the other networks is Murdoch will openly admit the news network falls in line with his views. You get Griffin or Turner to admit their bias and you might have a leg to stand on.”

    Fox is pretty unabashed about their position on things. If MSNBC or ABC came out and admitted their slavish devotion to Obama, that’d be interesting.

  329. Napolitano is the shit! is liberty watch broadcast or net only?

  330. gotta agree. media paints a picture of “the way life is” and it rarely diverges from the leftwing view.

  331. MNG – not sidestepping anything. It just makes me laugh that the main three of fascism and their subsequent corporatism (Italy, Germany and Romania) aren’t good enough for you: the marginal case, Franco and Spain, is the one you have to hammer on to be right.

    Arguing about marginal cases is one thing. Using them to chip away at something that is historically accepted fact (that economic corporatism is a big part of fascism) is something else.

  332. Bingo, Sean. The socialist/progressive/statist-douchebag strategy of miving in on education and children’s entertainment predates the birth of anyone on this thread, I would wager.

  333. moving, I said moving!

  334. “(that economic corporatism is a big part of fascism) is something else.”

    isn’t that exactly how mussolini defined it?

  335. “Napolitano is the shit! is liberty watch broadcast or net only?”

    I have no clue, honestly – don’t get cable or watch news on TV, myself… If it was net-only, that would explain its criminal lack of acceptable broadcasting standards.

  336. From Wiki

    “Mussolini claimed that dynamic or heroic capitalism and the bourgeoisie could be prevented from degenerating into static capitalism and then supercapitalism if the concepts of economic individualism were abandoned and if state supervision of the economy was introduced.[4] Private enterprise would control production but it would be supervised by the state.[5] Italian Fascism presented the economic system of corporatism as the solution that would preserve private enterprise and property while allowing the state to intervene in the economy when private enterprise failed.[6”

    And how is this different from what Tony advocates day in and day out? Or what you often advocate, for that matter MNG?

  337. More to the point, how’s that any different from what 90% of our elected representatives advocate, most especially Obama?

  338. isn’t that exactly how mussolini defined it?

    Apparently MNG wants us to take fascists at their word when it’s convenient for his argument.

  339. “I have no clue, honestly – don’t get cable or watch news on TV, myself… If it was net-only, that would explain its criminal lack of acceptable broadcasting standards.”

    like sound quality and production? i guess i’d have to agree…

    lew rockwell:

    red state fascism: http://www.lewrockwell.com/rockwell/red-state-fascism.html

    headed to national socialism: http://www.lewrockwell.com/rockwell/headed-to-national-socialism123.html

  340. TAO::

    gotcha

  341. Not voting, or voting for anybody other than the two major party candidates, is an excuse for everybody some to ignore your opinions.

    FTFY. And if your vote counted, they wouldn’t let you do it, nyah, nyah.

  342. aiming to aid a specific political party.

    This is the definition I was going for. Real propaganda is always in the service of a political party or totalitarian state. If someone can point to the network of media outlets that defends the Democratic party no matter how absurdly they have to twist facts and contradict themselves, be my guest. It doesn’t exist. And not only is there a highly connected propaganda network in the service of the GOP, most of its media are unprofitable–thus funded my specific interests. Curious how the opinionmakers so in favor of free markets have trouble paying for themselves without your Reverend Moons and such.

  343. Or should that be Reverends Moon?

  344. Fox news is unprofitable now, Tony?

    Man… Do you ever NOT just make shit up?

  345. it is a defining feature of liberalism that thought should be free.

    Then the Democrats are not Liberals. Thanks for admitting that, even though we all knew it already.

    -jcr

  346. If you are under the age of 50, and you were socialized educated in a U.S. K-12 system, you should know first-hand about an agenda in service to a totalitarian state.

    If you meet the above criteria, and do not understand the premise, you were either high for the balance of your K-12 education, or incapable of critical thought as a teen.

  347. jcr;

    Of course they’re not Liberals! They’re “progressives”.

  348. The people in this country most likely to claim the mantle “intellectual” are pseudo-intellectuals with a taste for power, not people actually pursuing knowledge. They’ve also by and large taken over the academies, purged those who think differently, and have contributed significantly to the current mess both directly (through direct advice to policy-makers and holding politically appointed positions) and indirectly (by molding current and future generations). Fuck’em and their pointy-heads.

  349. Some of us never were fans of Obama, so how could we have drifted away from him?

    For that matter, how many libertarians have “drifted away” from John McCain?

  350. Count me in for two big fat zeros

  351. TAO
    Romania is a bigger example of fascism than Franco?

    See, you don’t know wtf you’re talking about.

    Everyone was trying out government interference, the Commnunists, the Fascists, the liberal democracies, people thought capitalism had failed. The fascists thought corporatism to be a way to squelch the very class conflict the Communists/socialists used as a defining point.

    Even were corporatism an integral part of fascism, which as I’ve said Franco’s example shows it was not (again, Hitler and Mussolini sure recognized who their brethern were and were’nt), there were other more integral parts, like hyper-nationalism. This was a defining feature: it set them apart from and at odds with the Communists and was shared by every example (Hitler, Franco, Mussolini). That would make it more a defining feature rather than an incident.

  352. “And how is this different from what Tony advocates day in and day out? Or what you often advocate, for that matter MNG?”

    First, let’s acknowledge the crucial differences between Mussolini’s words you quote and socialism (in the latter there would be no emphasis on retaining private ownership; no wonder the owners preferred the fascists to the communists!). So interestingly, the hook you use to try to equate fascism and progressivism on is their common committment to property ultimately being in private hands!

    So how is it different than what I espouse? Well, in all the important respects, that’s what I have been trying to tell you. It doesn’t share the other aspects of fascism which I maintain are the more defining ones, the ones we remember as being so morally abhorrent: the militarism, the nationalism, the glorification of conflict, the brutal suppression of dissent. Interestingly, progressivism or liberalism, whatever, lacks these things. If any party shares these aspects it is the GOP (but far short of anything that deserves to be called “fascist”, which is why I think calling Bush one was so over the top).

  353. To say the gop has more media, media-related organizations and machines on its side is lunacy, piffle.

  354. The people in this country most likely to claim the mantle “intellectual” are pseudo-intellectuals with a taste for power, not people actually pursuing knowledge.

    I agree. Almost everything of true significance in America is run by people who went to schools like Harvard and Yale, and if they were truly that much smarter than everyone else like they think they are, then everything in America wouldn’t be f*cked up beyond recognition the way that it is.

  355. MNG, do you not understand what I meant by saying that corporatism – the de facto control of the means of production by the state in a fascist/corporatist society – is nearly the same in net effect as the literal control of the means of production by the state in a socialist society.

    In either case, the state controls the means of production. The only real difference is that in a fascist state, “private” government-sanctioned monopolies/cartels are the prime beneficiaries and of course they still maintain a bastardized form of a price system (which helps them allocate resources much better than a fully-socialist system) – and in a socialist state, the government cronies who fleece the proletariat are actually part of the government now.

    At any rate, I think very few historians would agree with your definition as mere jack-boot nationalism with no economic component what-so-ever. It’s also silly on it’s face since jack-boot nationalism describes a myriad of nations over the years, most of which we wouldn’t define as “fascist” at all. As I said earlier – it describes Lenin/Stalinist Russia for godsake! If all you have is authoritarian + nationalism, you have to include tons and tons of people. China… Japan… Iran… North Korea.

    As far as I can tell, virtually every dictatorial regime has a massive nationalist component. Kind of how it works, isn’t it?

    The fact that you bring up Franco to prove that fascism doesn’t also include corporatism is also kind of bizarre… For two reasons: Franco’s Spain is only on the border of what we consider “fascism” to begin with (see below), and they DID employ many of the same corporatist economic policies as Italy & Germany…

    Another bit from Wiki;

    “Although Franco and Spain under his rule adopted some trappings of fascism, he, and Spain under his rule, are not generally considered to be fascist; among the distinctions, fascism entails a revolutionary aim to transform society, where Franco and Franco’s Spain did not seek to do so, and, to the contrary, although authoritarian, were conservative and traditional.[2][3][4][5][6] Stanley Payne, the preeminent scholar on fascism and Spain notes: “scarcely any of the serious historians and analysts of Franco consider the generalissimo to be a core fascist.”[5][7]”

    Franco is generally the outlier here anyway and even still the state completely controlled the economy in a corporatist fashion until the late 50’s when Franco finally conceded to adopt some market-liberalization.

    We’re sort of debating two things here, though.

    1. Fascism has to include more than just nationalism & authoritarianism. To qualify, you also need to include corporatism as part of your definition.

    2. Corporatism/Fascism & Socialism are damn close to the same thing in a real-world sense. They are two different routes of accomplishing the same thing – complete control of the economy by a centralized authority.

    Walter Block on this topic

    And again… Since you continually advocate for more and more central control (like our other “liberals” around here like Tony, Chad, etc.), how do you not realize the direction you’re pushing for? Note that I’m not saying that you/liberals are “fascists” (since again, you lack the brutality & nationalism), but the economic position is the same.

  356. “So interestingly, the hook you use to try to equate fascism and progressivism on is their common committment to property ultimately being in private hands!”

    Just to be quite clear. No. You missed the point. The “hook” to equate fascism/socialism & progressivism is your commitment to CONTROLLING the economy via state coercion.

    So-called “private” or “public” ownership matters very little when the state runs the show either way.

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