Time's Michael Grunwald Wants Big Government To Save Him From Scary Freedom


Michael Grunwald

It takes backbone to pen an essay that condemns defenders of personal freedom on both the right and the left and explicitly calls for the government to "tread on me" in the name of hoped-for safety — a backbone like aging celery, flopping rubber-like and forgotten at the back of the refrigerator. Over at Time, Michael Grunwald (that's his mug at the right) has just that floppy backbone, and he makes no bones, not even the softest sort, about his deference to authority in all things. "Go ahead, quote the Ben Franklin line about those who would sacrifice some liberty for security deserving neither," he taunts. He wants his soothing promises of security. There's no doubt that he speaks for many Americans in these urban-lockdown days, and those of us who care about liberty should probably be prepared to not only battle the security freaks in the political arena, but to make it clear that enacting their Big Brotherish vision into law won't be the same thing as getting us to live by their rules.

Writes Grunwald in "Tread on Me: The Case for Freedom From Terrorist Bombings, School Shootings and Exploding Factories":

I guess you could call me a statist. I'm not sure we need public financing for our symphonies or our farmers or our mortgages—history will also recall my Stand With Rand on the great laser-pointing controversy of 2011—but we do need Big Government to attack the big collective action problems of the modern world. Our rights are not inviolate. Just as the First Amendment doesn't let us shout "Fire!" in a crowded theater, the Second Amendment shouldn't let us have assault weapons designed for mass slaughter. And if the authorities decided it was vital to ask Tsarnaev about his alleged murder of innocents before reminding him of his Fifth Amendment rights to lawyer up, I won't second-guess their call. The civil liberties purists of the ACLU are just as extreme as the gun purists of the NRA, or the anti-regulatory purists in business groups like the Club for Growth.

As you can see, Grunwald knows what he wants, and he wants it good and hard. He has no time for those who "just want government to leave us alone." Says he:

But while the Stand With Rand worldview is quite consistent—against gun restrictions, traffic-light cameras, drone strikes, anti-discrimination laws, anti-pollution laws, and other Big Brother intrusions into our private lives—it's wrong. And most of us know it's wrong, which is why we celebrate our first responders, our soldiers, our law enforcers. They're from the government and they're here to help.

Nothing thrills Grunwald more than first responders throwing their living bodies between his quivering self and "an Elvis impersonator trying to poison the president." Well … even if that Elvis impersonator turns out to have been wrongly fingered and probably framed by somebody gaming the oh-so protective security state.

Grunwald isn't ignorant of America's history and even thinks our "skepticism of authority is a healthy tradition. But we're pretty free." He seems to think, in fact, that we're too free. But his conception of "free" might strike a few of us as just a bit … constrained.

I could argue about how free we really are or the degree to which that freedom is eroding, but that's not relevant here. Fundamentally, Grunwald really is the guy Benjamin Franklin warned you about. At his core, he's fearful of the dangers of the world — all of the dangers except those posed by the people he would deputize to keep him safe. Anybody who says he is "inclined to stand with the public servants keeping us safe, even when the al Qaeda operative they ice in Yemen is an American citizen," lives on the other side of a philosophical divide that can't be bridged by examples of abuses and atrocities.

By contrast, those of us who value liberty: libertarians, civil libertarians, Tea Party conservatives, or whatever, may squabble among ourselves about the details, but we emphasize liberty as the highest political good. Those of us of a more existential bent even see liberty as necessary for giving value to life — living without it is pointless. Maybe we're more risk-tolerant than the Grunwalds of the world, or maybe we just recognize that the watchmen appointed to keep us safe pose new risks of their own.

One thing to keep in mind is that the Grunwalds can only get their way if they not only win all the policy battles, but then can also get the rest of us to submit. By contrast, while those of us who value liberty would prefer to win the policy battles to maximize our freedom in a hassle-free way, we can also carve out incremental victories by refusing to go along, defying laws, blinding surveillance cameras and otherwise keeping the world from being the well-scrubbed, submissive security state. When I say that I'm teaching my son to break the law, I'm not joking.

Grunwald may dismiss Franklin's warning about the tradeoff between liberty and security, but I think a good rejoinder to him comes from the rather more fiery Samuel Adams:

If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest of freedom, go home from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen.

The Michael Grunwalds of the world need to understand not only that we think they're as wrong as they think we are, but that, with our Bitcoin and our 3D printers and our creative accounting and our backyard gardens and our overall attitude, we're going to preserve our freedom, no matter what. And that means they'll never have the controlled world of which they dream.

NEXT: Rand Paul Clarifies His Position on Drones After Making Waves With Fox Business Appearance

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. The evening posts don't quit!
    You know who else liked getting paid OT?

      1. If you think Gladys`s story is terrific,, last pay cheque my girlfriends brother basically actually earnt $4367 grafting a twelve hour week an their house and there roomate's mother-in-law`s neighbour done this for 9-months and actually earnt more than $4367 in there spare time at there computer. follow the steps available at this link... http://kep2.com/

  2. "I guess you could call me a statist"
    Yes, and believe me, that would be the MOST complimentary label I could use.
    Ignorant asshole follows pretty quickly thereafter.
    More importantly, pathetic excuse for a human being is the most accurate.
    You sleazy twit, you cannot conduct your life without a government telling you what to do? Well, if you are that pathetic, please take up residence in the pig sty and leave the rest of us alone.

    1. I had already forgot he was my countryman before ever having a clue who he is.

    2. He lost me with that first sentence. As far as I'm concerned, there is no persuasive argument that can possibly be made from that basis.

  3. Michael Grunwald needs to be thrown in solitary confinement in a maximum security prison so he can live out his days free from risk.

    1. He ought to go to North Korea, or Cuba, if they'll have him. I imagine he could get an English-language propaganda gig.

    2. Excellent idea, Jordan. Why not give the man what he longs for?

  4. This is hilarious.

    And if the authorities decided it was vital to ask Tsarnaev about his alleged murder of innocents before reminding him of his Fifth Amendment rights to lawyer up, I won't second-guess their call. The civil liberties purists of the ACLU are just as extreme as the gun purists of the NRA, or the anti-regulatory purists in business groups like the Club for Growth.

    I like the new technique used by mindless hacks where they call anyone who disagrees with them 'purists.'

    'You don't think the government should be allowed to put cameras in your house and watch you at all times? PRIVACY PURIST!'

    1. "The civil liberties purists of the ACLU"

      Uh, the civil liberty half-ists? Don't recall a bit A2 push.

      1. The NRA are also not gun purists. Actual gun purists get annoyed at how wishy washy the NRA sometimes is.

        1. When you are so far from being a "purist" on these issues, anybody who is even slightly more "pure" than you is a hardcore "purist".

        2. The NRA are also not gun purists. Actual gun purists get annoyed at how wishy washy the NRA sometimes is.

          I was thinking that about all three. I also support all three as they are more good than bad on their issues.

    2. "if the authorities decided it was vital to ask Tsarnaev about his alleged murder of innocents before reminding him of his Fifth Amendment rights to lawyer up, I won't second-guess their call."

      If they do that, when the kid does see his lawyer, it all gets thrown out under the exclusionary rule - meaning it's nothing but wasted time, and any evidence collected as a result of those conversations goes as well. In the end it reduces the chance of effective prosecution to bend the rules.


      1. Actually, that's not my understanding. Evidence collected as a result of a statement made before the Miranda warning is read is admissible, but the statement is not. That is, unless the public safety exemption is invoked (which it was), then the statements are admissible as well. Of course, his lawyer will probably argue that a 48 hour public safety exemption is ridiculous and maybe prevent his statements from being admitted that way.

        What's sickening here is that this "public safety exemption" overreach that so many support is a pretty clear attempt to expand the state's ability to abuse suspects. The abuse won't be confined to such unsympathetic characters. Remember when you used to be able to leave your house when you wanted and the police had to have a warrant to storm your house with a SWAT team in tow? Those days ended last weekend.

    3. So he is a Big Government Purist...as we learn that the DHS was 'pinged' about the older brother's trip to Russia, that he was interviewed by the FBI as a potential threat, and that a Mosque had to reach out to the FBI to identify him (vs the other way around), he'll say that this failure of our very expensive security and intelligence apparatus to protect us is asking too much. Just like it was for 9/11

    4. purist, n. one who does not go along with my purism. Syn.: fundamentalist

  5. He's basically a giant KICK ME sign, taped to the back of America.

    1. Allow me to don the appropriate SWAT team uniform and oblige.

    2. I wish I could kick him. In the balls.

      1. Croaker, I think you're operating under an assumption not born out by the evidence.

  6. I guess you could call me a statist.

    You "guess"? You're not sure? The fuck?

    1. It's just a weasel word, Prote.

  7. Many things particularly annoy me about this sort of bovine Safety First statism. One is the sort of naive, Platonic, abstract faith that the "common sense" and "obvious" solutions will have no negative side effects.

    Another is the lack of proportion. Never mind how few people are injured by some tiny fraction of existing "assault weapons," because Something Must Be Done.

    Related to that is a selective blindness I see most often on the left. Some risks are tiny but unacceptable ("assault weapons"). As for other risks (AIDS, drug-resistant TB spread by illegal aliens, crazy homeless people, welfare culture breeding crime), though, well, sure, they might represent risks, but we just have to live with them, because doing anything effective would Infringe On Rights.

    1. "bovine Safety First statism"

      Ovine, not bovine.

      Yours is an outrageous insult to American cattle.

      1. Either way works for me.

  8. Grunwald isn't the omega man we need, but he's the omega man we want.

    1. He's the pinacle of evolution of the New Soviet Man.

  9. Amen, J.D. And thank you for that Adams quote. If only we were so lucky to have them leave us alone and go to Canada or Europe or wherever. There are plenty of other countries in the world where they can have their chains. Why shackle us here?

    (I know the answer, I just don't like it.)

    1. The Sam Adams quote is classic. But I like bringing up Etienne de la Boetie's writing:

      There are always a few, better endowed than others, who feel the weight of the yoke and cannot restrain themselves from attempting to shake it off: these are the men who never become tamed under subjection and who always, like Ulysses on land and sea constantly seeking the smoke of his chimney, cannot prevent themselves from peering about for their natural privileges and from remembering their ancestors and their former ways. These are in fact the men who, possessed of clear minds and far-sighted spirit, are not satisfied, like the brutish mass, to see only what is at their feet, but rather look about them, behind and before, and even recall the things of the past in order to judge those of the future, and compare both with their present condition. These are the ones who, having good minds of their own, have further trained them by study and learning. Even if liberty had entirely perished from the earth, such men would invent it. For them slavery has no satisfactions, no matter how well disguised.

      Written in the 16th century!

      1. Nice one! Here's another good one...

        And what in much of the former time was done by war and by impoverishing of the people to make them slaves and to hold them in bondage, our latter princes have endeavoured to effect by giving ease and wealth unto the people; but withal corrupting their understanding by infusing false principles concerning kings and governments and parliaments and freedoms...

        - Richard Overton, "A Remonstrance of Many Thousand Citizens", 1646

  10. Just as the First Amendment doesn't let us shout "Fire!" in a crowded theater

    Especially if it is burning.

    1. The theater is not burning unless the duly appointed Fire Marshal says it is burning.

    2. Just as the First Amendment doesn't let us shout "Fire!" in a crowded theater
      Especially if it is burning.

      Of course the corrected version of his sentence is
      Just as the First Amendment doesn't let us shout "fire" in a crowded theater, the Second Amendment doesn't let us "open fire" in a crowded theater.

    3. Can I yell "FLOOD"? Is it the word or the act of yelling that isn't protected? If he thinks it is the act of yelling, he hasn't been to a theater lately.

      Also, every time I ask people WHY you can't yell fire in a crowded theater, never have I been given the correct answer.

      1. They have a slogan not a thought.

      2. You know, I did it once, and, sure enough, nothing happened. Turns out they have alarms for that sort of shit, so yelling, "Fire," doesn't actually cause complete and utter pandemonium.

  11. There's dangerous stuff out there, and while it's probably fun to Stand With Rand, I'm more inclined to stand with the public servants keeping us safe, even when the al Qaeda operative they ice in Yemen is an American citizen, even when they shut down an entire city to hunt for a single teenager

    If this was posted on HNR, I'd be inclined to think that person was trolling us.

    1. Tony? TONY.

      1. It actually does sound exactly like Tony.

        1. We should have known. Time and Tony are perfect for each other.

    2. It has to be trolling. I can't even come up with a suitable comparative insult as to his complete and utter lack of any fortitude that wouldn't be brutally offensive to the target community. I wouldn't even sully the French reputation with a Grunwald.

      I mean, how do you mock something that comes off as parody?

    3. I love how every "trade your security for freedom" argument revolves around "I have no problem giving up my freedom to be safe"...no one's stopping you, cock-knuckle. We're opposed to you giving away OUR freedom for YOUR illusion of safety,

  12. He'd probably get off on solitary confinement. I wonder how he'd like being SWATted. Does he have a dog?

    Someone needs to remind him that "assault weapons" were banned and background checks were universal in Connecticut, and the bombs went off in Massachusetts, where everything is illegal.

    1. Don't confuse the issue with your "facts". Obviously these things were legal,otherwise they wouldn't have happened.

  13. One is the sort of naive, Platonic, abstract faith that the "common sense" and "obvious" solutions will have no negative side effects.

    Or even any positive effects.

  14. Is he doing his best Lee Harvey Oswald in that picture?

  15. Time Magazine? never heard of it

    1. No? Surely you've heard their advertising jingle:

      It's about Time
      It's about Space
      It's about time to punch your face!

  16. I'll say this much for Grunwald, he's utterly ruthless in his pants-shitting, thumb-sucking cowardice.

  17. Seems that some people just love the sound of jackboots early in the morning.

    1. Some people just don't like being off the leash.

  18. Just as the First Amendment doesn't let us shout "Fire!" in a crowded theater,

    It's good to know that he's resolute in his opposition to socialists throwing Yiddish pamphlets off apartment buildings.

  19. And most of us know it's wrong, which is why we celebrate our first responders, our soldiers, our law enforcers. They're from the government and they're here to help.

    Is this guy fucking kidding? The whole city of Boston shut down so a bunch of tacticool shitheads could pretend to play soldier, and the ONLY reason they found the guy they were looking for was due to a guy who went out for a smoke AFTER the lockdown was lifted. They then proceeded to shoot up the poor informant's boat like Rambo. And I'm supposed to take this genuflecting to MUH BRAVE PREATORIAN GUARD seriously?

    Nuke SWPLs today.

  20. I'm a little disturbed. Not because of what the guy wrote, but my internal reaction. Reading this actually made me HATE this guy. No joke. You know how you can feel vitriolic hatred rise up inside you, almost warming you? I felt that as I read his piece. It bothers me that I can be so affected by this stuff

    1. Reading what Bloomberg said had the same effect, BTW

    2. Don't be too hard on yourself. It is NEVER wrong to hate a cowardly fucking pussy.

      That's what we are talking about here. Fucking bed wetting pussies who are so afraid of living they hand their lives/liberty over to anyone that would promise them protection. It is disgusting.

      When did it become okay to openly act cowardly? We should not accept such people in civil society. They should be berated.

      1. Thanks. What's even worse is that cowardice is now associated with patriotism

        1. That is the post in which you nailed it. It is the very heart of the proglodyte endeavour to trick freedom to mask slavery.

          Never be afraid to hate. Hate is equated to evil in our fables to pacify children, but an adult, properly formed, can wield it to his own positive ends.

      2. Comparing Michael Grunwald to a pussy - even a cowardly pussy or a bed-wetting pussy -- is an affront to pussies.

        You should be ashamed.

        1. I don't understand using "pussy" as an insult. Pussy is, IMO, literally the greatest, best thing on earth.

    3. Don't hate. Encourage him as much as possible. Make him into the Avatar of Progressivism.

  21. We need a good 'sneer' font.

  22. Grunwald would have been a model citizen in 1930's Germany.

    1. As Heroic Mulatto pointed out, people like him would have been loyalists during the Revolution.

      1. Loyalists were far more principled and self-reliant than Michael Grunwald.

        This is a way over-the-top affront to Americans who felt it proper to be loyal to the Crown. Even worse than the affront against cowardly, bedwetting pussies.

      2. Much worse than that. He would have operated the ovens in Germany with a smile.

        After all, the government said these people were dangerous.

    2. Best comment so far.

  23. "Just as the First Amendment doesn't let us shout "Fire!" in a crowded theater, the Second Amendment shouldn't let us have assault weapons designed for mass slaughter."

    The First Amendment doesn't punish us for shouting "Fire!" before we shout it. But this guy seems to want to prevent us from exercising our Second Amendment rights beforehand--not punish us for abusing them afterwards.

    P.S. If shouting "Fire!" in a crowded theater is wrong, it's only wrong because it unduly deprives other people of their rights.

    Responsibly exercising our right to free speech doesn't unduly infringe on anyone else's rights, and responsibly exercising our right to bear arms doesn't unduly infringe on anyone else's rights either.

    He picked a shitty example.

    1. Not to mention the "fire in a crowded theatre" thing was used to jail people for speaking out against World War 1

    2. Well said Ken.

      I was trying to come up with a good way to phrase that thought exactly. The only limits to our rights are when they conflict with those of another. The only reason we cannot yell fire in a crowded theater is because it jeopardizes the lives (rights) of others. Owning "assault weapons" DOES NOT!

      1. There is a video on Youtube of Christopher Hitchens debating some academic on Free Speech (in the context of the Muslim cartoon riots). They are in an auditorium or theatre or something, probably at a college campus.

        Hitchens, of course, was taking the stance that freedom of speech should never be limited. When his opponent brought up the "fire in a crowded theatre" example, Hitchens waited for him to finish and then immediately turned to the crowd and yelled "Fire!"

        It was awesome.

        1. He also called 'Fire in a crowded theater' "The fatuous verdict of the greatly overpraised Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes."

          It can't be said enough. Hitchens rules. Fuck Oliver Wendell Holmes.

          1. I've never gone so far as to say that Hitchens rules, but anyone who hates O.W. Holmes is all right in my book.

            1. I'd go so far as to say that Hitchens rules. He was incredibly smart and came by his positions honestly. He could explain why he thought that way and he wrote beautifully. He was also always willing to support his positions in a debate.

              If more leftists were as honest and reasonable as Hitchens, I wouldn't hate them so much.

              1. He was incredibly smart and came by his positions honestly.

                It is right it this general area where you lose your progressives.

            2. I regret some of my own previous criticism of him from over yhe years, the early oughts, as I only saw the negative aspects of his political ideology, the socialism and war symp, but he was much more than that. His unassumptive approach to always being engaged in debate was, to put a bit of word faggery English on that cue ball, dazzling.

          2. You piqued my interest with the Hitchens anecdote -- after some detective work I found it on youtube.

            After shouting fire to the audience (not too loudly, but loud enough to make him cough for awhile) he commented that the OW Holmes proclamation was "one of the stupidest statements ever to come from the American bench." He then tells the full tale of the Supreme Court case, where some leaflet-distributing socialists during WW1 were jailed for life, and Holmes upheld their sentence by comparing their act to shouting fire in a crowded theater.

            The part comes about about 11 minutes in, but it's actually worth waiting for.

            1. That other guy is quite a shithead, isn't he?

      2. Like I wrote down-thread, a better example is threatening to blow someone's head off if he doesn't give you his wallet.

        The Second Amendment doesn't protect our right to shoot people arbitrarily any more than the First Amendment protects our right to threaten to shoot people if they don't give us their wallets.

        But that doesn't mean the government can violate our First and Second Amendment rights beforehand! For goodness' sake, just because we can be held responsible for what we willingly choose to do if it unduly harms other people, that doesn't mean we don't really have a right to free speech, etc.

        Why would some criminal being convicted for arbitrarily killing people mean that the rest of us don't have the right to bear arms? I guess that's the other point he's conflating, too: when someone goes to jail for yelling "Fire!" in a crowded theater, it isn't Congress that puts him there.

        It's a jury of his peers.

        Whomever yelled "Fire!" was deprived of his rights by a jury--if this guy wants to take my guns away (using his own analogy), then doesn't he need to get a jury involved, too? If I haven't committed a crime, then why is he depriving me of my rights, like some criminal who yelled "Fire!" in a crowded theater?

        1. KS, you're on fire today. You might need to roll around a bit on the ground for your own personal safety.

    3. Wendell Holmes' legacy truly fucked up the focus of the debate.

      If you think about it, shouting fire in a theater is not even a matter of free speech. It's a matter of property rights!

      It should be perfectly possible to have a theater with a disclaimer when you purchase your tickets that anyone may shout fire and it's up to you to believe them or not, and that they waive any liabilities

  24. You have to wonder if people like this really think we don't see what they're really after. Of course, I'm perfectly fine with you abasing yourself before whatever authority you wish. But that's not really it, is it. It's not enough to form a club where you trade in all your freedoms. It's not enough to take over a city, or a whole state, for the same purpose. And as we see with Europe: when it comes down to it, a whole country is not enough, either. No, in the end, it has to be universal.

    Think about that: compared to people like this, Stalin is an improvement.

    1. Re: 0x90,

      when it comes down to it, a whole country is not enough, either. No, in the end, it has to be universal.

      It's because it will be lonely in the dungeon if they don't get everybody else to "join in."

      1. Yes, but you're getting ahead of yourself -- dungeons don't build themselves.

    2. At least Stalin wanted to BE the dictator, the Alpha dog, the guy with the whip. Shits like Grunwald want to be the ones crawling in the dirt, getting lorded over. They actually think it's SAFE there

      The worship for authority probably isn't confined to his political views. I wouldn't be surprised if he was a submissive behind closed doors or something.

      1. Ostensibly, that came later -- I was referring specifically to his theory of "socialism in one country."

      2. Well, Grunwald probably doesn't think he'd get crushed into the dirt; he probably thinks that even under a Stalin, he'd get to keep his nice cushy job as a middle-class opinion writer. He would, of course, be sadly shocked when his magazine got closed down and he was imprisoned for printing something the authorities didn't like, because of course he is good and the authorities are good and would never do anything bad to him...

  25. I guess you could call me a statist.

    Give the little shit a cigar!

  26. The "fire in a crowded theatre" metaphor is a bullshit example, too.

    If lleftists knew the case where that stupid fucking quote originated from (it was a case where the Supremes approved the government jailing a socialist for speaking against World War 1), I'm sure they'd see the error in their - ergh, no. The irony would fly over their heads and they'd keep parroting it, since they're bootlickers at heart.

    1. Not only that but that precedent was later overturned. It is arguable that shouting fire in a crowded theater is currently protected free speech.

      Fuck Oliver Wendell Holmes yo.

      1. Seriously. The Supreme Court we have now is far from good, but compared to most of the twentieth century Supreme Courts they're paragons of liberty

  27. Statists get a lot of mileage out of mixing up or conflating a couple of basic concepts.

    Just because the government can't prevent you from speaking before the fact doesn't mean that you can't be held responsible for what you say afterwards. But the best example of that isn't yelling "Fire!" in a crowded theater--better examples include fraud and threatening to shoot someone during a robbery.

    Threatening to shoot someone if he doesn't give you his wallet isn't protected by the First Amendment any more than shooting someone becasue he won't give you his wallet is protected by the Second Amendment.

    But that doesn't justify the government infringing on our rights to bear arms beforehand any more than it justifies the government infringing beforehand on our rights to free speech.

  28. "One thing to keep in mind is that the Grunwalds can only get their way if they not only win all the policy battles, but then can also get the rest of us to submit."

    We need to start using the word "coward" more often as in, "Those of us who would so enthusiastically trade our freedom in for the hope of security are a bunch of cowards".

    Human nature being what it is, it's probably necessary to call some people out for their cowardice before we can expect other people to be brave in the face of danger. There needs to be a price to pay (if only in embarrassment) for advocating cowardice in public so clearly.

    The man's a coward! And he should be called out in pubic as such. And if he isn't ashamed of his cowardice, then that doesn't mean we can't embarrass him in the eyes of people out there who still have shame.

  29. Amen! I know it's not much, but I practice running red lights whenever possible, just to keep in practice you know. And when I'm taking care of my granddaughters, I pack a S&W .357 mag in my daypack .... because nobody else will be there to defend us when the emergency -- unlikely though it may be -- does in fact occur.

  30. Didn't it kind of show the opposite?

    Pretty much the entire police force didn't really do much to the two brothers - one ran over the other. And the other would have eluded the police if not for a home owner checking out his own boat.

    Similarly, at the bombing itself, lots and lots of bystanders helped the injured. Sure, the "first responders" helped a lot later one, but it's not like they did it alone.

  31. You know what? I'd just LOVE to have a cop outside my door who would bring me milk if my kids were hungry. You know? Like that cop did for that lady in Boston on Friday? The one in that picture that was forwarded around?

    I mean, what an awesome cop. He went and got her milk while she was stuck inside. All she had to do was ask. She would have been in trouble for going to the store herself to get milk for her family, but that nice policeman went and got some for her. That policeman was nice enough to agree with her that her kids needed milk. And, I bet, if they didn't need milk, he would have been nice enough tell her so and not brought her milk, too. And that's OK, because the policeman was keeping her and her babies safe. If the policeman says that she can't go get milk and that her baby doesn't need milk, well, he's the policeman, so he's always right. So in a way, the policeman did her a bigger favor than buying milk, he let her know that it was OK for her babies to have the milk. And that's what's really important here. The police are always looking out for us and doing what's best.

    Like giving us permission to have milk.

  32. They're from the government and they're here to help.

    Know who else was from the government, and here to help.....?

  33. "How happy... to be a slave and have no will to make no decisions, like driftwood. How very peaceful it must be."

    That's who Grunwald is.

  34. As J.D. points out, the only way people like this Grunwald spoor can get their way is if everyone goes along, either by free will or by force. Of course, the concept of free will is somewhat troublesome when it comes to denying itself. And there will always be some small detail that even the most dediated will find disagreeable. What remains is force, and that is the core of what Grunwald advocates: the application of raw force to gain compliance. Which, of course, leads down roads the human race has trod before, to its great sorrow.

  35. Shut the fuck up, Michael Grunwald.

  36. Never really thought about it like that. WOw.


  37. "In other unrelated news, Micahel Grunwald's testicles have mysteriously vanished from reality. Researchers at Europe's CERN laboratory have taken an interest in the apparent quantum nature of Grunwald's inexplicable testicle disappearance."

  38. "He who sacrifices freedom for security deserves neither." Guess he didn't read writings of a dead founding father Benjamin Franklin.

    1. Errrmmm...he mentions the Ben Franklin quote in the article.

  39. Another facet of the shit-diamond is that this cowardly fuck is not alone. There are millions of fucking cowards in this nation...just waiting to be told what to do. And I am sure there are plenty of fucking pigs, politicians, and bureaucrats waiting in line for a chance to do the ordering.

  40. I'll say this much for Grunwald, he's utterly ruthless in his pants-shitting, thumb-sucking cowardice.

    I'm still laughing at this.

  41. Grunwald is the sort of brave leftist who, in objection the Vietnam War, burned his bra instead of his draft card.

  42. He thinks that he's being "edgy" or something by explicitly condemning freedom and embracing servitude.

    Fortunately, such edginess will doom progressivism to the death it deserves.

  43. We're missing an important distinction here. There is nothing wrong with Grunwald wanting security. Even hardcore Libertarians voluntarily pay for insurance, security systems for our homes, and private police at college campuses and housing developments. When we pay for these things, we give up a bit of our freedom by agreeing to pay insurance premia and to abide by campus rules. In short, we voluntarily tradeoff security for liberty all the time.

    The important nuance is that Grunwald wants to impose his preferred tradeoff on the rest of us. And to that I ask, "Where would Michael Grunwald have me turn to find protection from Michael Grunwald?"

    1. His mommy will ground him.

  44. How could the government have prevented the Boston Bombing?

    They assembled a crappy IED from OTC items.

    At some point we have to recognize that the only thing that protects us from violence, is the fact that the people around us aren't inclined towards violence.

    And why should we sacrifice "our right to automatic weapons, our right to walk through airport security with our shoes on, our right to run our businesses however we please."?

    I don't often comment here but I lurk quite a bit.

    I remember one of the regulars saying something to the effect of: "The government is a reflection of the culture. If you don't have a libertarian culture, you can't have a libertarian government."

    We're fucked.

  45. I have a question. What is "Time Magazine"?

    I think my grandfather said something about it once. Is it like "typewriters" or "VCRs" or something else that is outdated, useless, and interesting only to collectors and crazy people?

  46. In all seriousness fuck this guy

  47. I'm about to hate myself for the comparison, but it's like the one guy from the Matrix who makes a deal with the computer monsters (sorry, been awhile and I wasn't a fan at the time) to sell out his friends in exchange for going back on the happy drugs and leading an awesome illusory life.

    People like Grunwald are terrified by freedom, because they can't bear the responsibility. They want everything handled for them. They want the choices made by Authorities, they want the parameters of their decisions and the borders of their lives set firmly in place by a paternalistic state. They want nothing more than to run on the treadmill, safe from any risk, get their treats, and be done. They can't handle the idea of being free to make their own choices, but then having to be responsible for the results.

    They'd rather allow the government to kick the doors in every now and again than to have to provide for their own security. They'd rather ban soda than not drink it.

    1. The same point was made by Butler Shaffer in an article on LewRockwell.com yesterday:

      No, the shortcoming of intelligence to which I refer is to be found in the minds of most Americans who long ago rejected the burden of living with a highly-energized, focused awareness not only of themselves, but of the world in which they live. To let others bear this responsibility ? particularly those who will insist upon extended power over them ? reflects what Walter Kaufmann defined as "decidophobia," the fear of making decisions for oneself. It is this transfer of existential energy from individuals to those eager to exercise power over others, that sustains political systems. I have long thought that the motto "In God We Trust" should be replaced on government currency by the more apt phrase "Ignorance Is Bliss."

  48. Our rights are not inviolate. Just as the First Amendment doesn't let us shout "Fire!" in a crowded theater

    Actually, it does. That he hauls out this obsolescent canard is proof positive that he is a jackass.

  49. The rights that we "purists" try so hard to protect are not mere philosophical concepts dreamt up by some hermit in a cave. The Bill of Rights was drafted by men with practical experience of government tyranny. They had seen with their own eyes what happens when you trust the government too much.

    They had also read history books, something few people do nowadays, and had that additional knowledge and understanding to guide them.

    In other words, they were being pragmatic. Get it, Tony?

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.