Authoritarianism

Way Too Many People Want an All-Powerful President

Rather than fighting for power, Americans should ignore each other and go about their lives.

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By now, it's no secret that Americans have largely divided along political lines and really don't like the people in the opposing tribe. What's a work in progress, though, is the growing willingness to do something very dramatic about that mutual loathing so that a temporarily dominant faction can't be obstructed by its enemies. Increasingly, our countrymen contemplate a balkanized future in which newly formed statelets are led by woke or MAGA Caesars. It's a future worth averting through some solution that lets people run their own lives independent of their opponents, if that's at all possible.

"Significant numbers of both Trump and Biden voters show a willingness to consider violating democratic tendencies and norms if needed to serve their priorities," the University of Virginia's Center for Politics reported last week of its latest poll. "Roughly 2 in 10 Trump and Biden voters strongly agree it would be better if a 'President could take needed actions without being constrained by Congress or courts,' [more than 40 percent of both groups at least somewhat agree] and roughly 4 in 10 (41%) of Biden and half (52%) of Trump voters at least somewhat agree that it's time to split the country, favoring blue/red states seceding from the union."

These poll results aren't outliers, but part of an evolving trend. Last year, the Democracy Fund Voter Study Group noted that "one-third (33 percent) of Americans have at some point in the last three years said that they think having 'a strong leader who doesn't have to bother with Congress or elections' would be a good system of government." 

On a related note, in June of this year Bright Line Watch found that "levels of expressed support for secession are arrestingly high, with 37% of respondents overall indicating willingness to secede. Within each region, the dominant partisan group is most supportive of secession." Among Republicans, the highest support for breaking up the country was found in the South, at 66 percent. About 47 percent of West-Coast Democrats favored creating their own nation. 

"Rather than support for secession diminishing over the past six months, as we expected, it rose in every region and among nearly every partisan group," the researchers added.

So, this involves more than frustrated politicians and pundits playing at the idea of installing a dictator or fracturing the country; something close to half of the population thinks these are intriguing ideas, worth seriously considering.

Resentment of the other tribe doesn't come without encouragement from above, it's worth emphasizing. President Joe Biden says Republicans should "get out of the way" so they don't "destroy" America. That sounds much like his predecessor, President Donald Trump, who suggested that Democrats "hate our country" and "can leave." Divisive jackassery is a shared characteristic that the political factions love exercising but resent in their opponents.

Not everybody agrees that tribal animosity necessitates separation into separate states, governed by a Caesar or otherwise. At Politico, Rich Lowry reasonably points out that, because Republicans and Democrats are separated more by county lines than by state borders, "If there were to be sovereign pure red and blue places, this wouldn't look like the relatively neat split of the United States into two in the 1860s, but more like post-Peace of Westphalia Europe, with hundreds of different entities." That raises a challenge to secession as a solution but doesn't offer an alternative.

"Perhaps if we continue to battle for control of our common country, one side or the other might win a popular mandate to exercise real power and change the facts on the ground, breaking the perpetual stalemate," Ed Kilgore proposes at New York magazine, though his solution wouldn't seem to solve anything. The notion of "popular mandate" has never been anything more than a modernized divine right to rule, invoked by election winners over the objection (and resistance) of those who see nothing of the sort. It's pure fantasy to think that one of today's antagonistic factions will suddenly surrender to the other.

So, a real solution would seem to involve letting people run their own lives out from under the thumb of enemies that three-quarters of both Democrats and Republicans (referring to the other side) describe to the Center for Politics as "a clear and present danger to the American way of life." If only there was a precedent for localized control, perhaps something called "federalism."

Unfortunately, as Rich Lowry emphasizes, the states aren't neatly divided between political factions. Instead, the divisions are closer to the county or community level, often pitting cities and suburbs against exurbs and rural areas. Decentralizing decision-making still makes sense, but it needs to go further than state capitals, closer to neighborhoods, families, and (especially) individuals.

"Democracies in sectarian societies often create institutional arrangements to protect the minority, like minority or group rights, power-sharing agreements, devolution or home rule," Nate Cohn noted in The New York Times in a May piece on America's rising political tensions. While he didn't necessarily recommend that approach for the United States, he offered no other ideas beyond a hope that hostilities would eventually settle under the new administration. That hasn't happened.

But even constitutionally sanctioned federalism tends to enjoy the support only of whoever is out of power in D.C. The dominant party there always asserts the supremacy of federal power—at least for so long as it controls Congress and the White House. It's highly unlikely that the Biden administration, or whoever wins in 2024, will voluntarily surrender authority to localities under some novel arrangement when it's traditional to bluster and chafe at state governments exercising the limited autonomy they were always intended to have. 

If Americans, then, are going to get out from under the thumbs of people they regard as enemies, they most likely will have to assert control over their lives without cooperation from further up the political food chain. There's precedent for that in state marijuana legalization, sanctuary cities, and Second Amendment sanctuaries, which assert the right of states and localities to refrain from enforcing federal law. But to be effective, there needs to be more outright defiance by localities and individuals of unwelcome dictates from above. 

Isn't turning a deaf ear to the powers-that-be potentially illegal? Yes, it is. But defying commands from government officials who hate you isn't as big a break with formal protocols as is balkanizing the country or installing a Caesar. Rather than fighting each other for power, Americans would be better advised to ignore each other and go about their lives.

NEXT: The Family Firm

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    1. Fuck Joe Biden.

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      2. AND F— DONALD TRUMP FOR HANDING THE PRESIDENCY AND SENATE OVER TO HIM.

        1. You clearly haven’t heard, it was stolen. It is the lying MSM and the digital media that handed it to Biden, on top of the tsunami of government school propaganda that prepared all the good little boys and girls to be good little obedient citizens.

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        2. “AND F— DONALD TRUMP FOR HANDING THE PRESIDENCY AND SENATE OVER TO HIM.”

          No, asshole, it was TDS-addled assholes.

    2. I feel your pain, loser.

      1. Last week, champion of civil discourse, this week, pretender to Kirkland’s throne.

        Fuck Joe Biden & his grrrl Friday

        1. Well played; I rate 4 golf claps

      2. We all feel the pain of President Biden. Some, such as the innocent aid worker and children in Afghanistan that he drone strike murdered, have felt it much more. Loss of currency value, loss of freedoms and loss of respect for the office of the President. Loser is correct.

        1. Drone strikes and other foreign conflicts are bad for the country. Once we had taken out Bin Laden we should have left Afghanistan. At least we are finally out of that shitshow. Biden managed what Obama and Trump didn’t, so I’ll give the Devil his due.

          The dollar peaked in 1985 and has been losing value ever since. While the 10-year average is slightly positive, in the larger context it is decidedly negative.

          Freedom is constrained by every administration. The only difference is which freedoms they choose to constrain. Personally I find the theocratic restrictions of the GOP worse than the nanny state restrictions of the Dems, but it’s like choosing between losing your left hand or your right hand.

          The loss of respect for the office of the President was a feature of government from 2017-2021. The chance of anyone matching the destruction of Trump is vanishingly small.

          In a perfect world this virulent hatred and irrational tribalism would recede. But the real world has politicians who see advantage in a divided country, which emboldens and strengthens the wingnuts. As long as the polotical advantages favor division and hatred, it will continue. And for now voters are rewarding, not punishing, divisiveness.

          1. What, precisely, are these “theocratic” laws? Abortion regulations?

            1. Those are the most egregious. But pretty much any “religious freedom” exemptions that make ordinary citizens subject to laws that religious folks aren’t betrays the rule of law. Any law that forces religious moral beliefs on those that have not chosen them are worse. And any “the Ten Commandments are the basis of American law” nonsense needs to be called out as the anti-American, anti-Cinstitutional bullshit that it is.

              If you think that Scalia’s standard in Employment Division v Smith is an unreasonable restriction of religious freedom, you are in the theocrat zone.

              1. So, pretty much none, TDS-addled assshole?

          2. “…Biden managed what Obama and Trump didn’t, so I’ll give the Devil his due…”

            Yeah, he sure did.
            Obama didn’t do shit; Trump had a functioning plan in place, which droolin’ Joe tore up and managed to get us a self-delivered ass-kicking instead of an organized withdrawal, leaving who knows how many hostages still there.
            I’ll also give him his due; the most colossal foreign policy fuckup since Benghazi; perhaps worse.

            1. What makes you think it was a fuckup? Do you have evidence – other than the result – the gifting of arms and hostages? But that would also have been the result if it was intentional. You better go check out Hunter Biden’s laptop – the Biden’s are owned by the CCP and the Russians. Remember Hillary’s big ‘Reset” button that she gave to Putin? Well, this is it. Then she had her lawyers at Perkins Coie deliver the case she had fabricated against Trump to the FBI – who lied about their being attached to Hillary.

              And then there is the fact that Fauci via Peter Dazsak financed the development of the Corona Virus, then plotted to hide the fact that they did so – as revealed by Rand Paul and numerous others under Fauci’s questioning by Congress.

              As for Trump, his primary virtue is that he is an outsider, by which I mean that his primary life is not about politics, but business. His greatest flaw is that he is entirely pragmatic, he doesn’t own a single idea in the form of a principle.

              1. Tin foil hats on aisle #6; blue-light special every other hour.

          3. “…The chance of anyone matching the destruction of Trump is vanishingly small…”

            Missed this.
            OK, one more TDS-addled piece of lefty shit; to be ingored.

          4. But no more mean tweets. No more tweets at all. Just sound bytes such as, “Mdueyehbfi” and “Ytesdgh.”

            1. Who cares about the mean tweets? He’s cruel and a bully. Duh. But the targets and the contents are illuminating. And the crazy contained in those tweets was legion. It was a great illustration of the conspiratorial mindset of the man.

              1. Great projection from TDSs-addled asshole.

              2. So tweets don’t matter…but tweets!

                1. I don’t care how the lies and the crazy are expressed. The fact that he lies and believes crazy things is the important part.

                  He says the same bullshit out loud that he tweeted. The content, not the delivery method, is the problem.

                  1. “I don’t care how the lies and the crazy are expressed. The fact that he lies and believes crazy things is the important part.”

                    That’s be fine, if you could come up with any meaningful ones, TDS-addled asshole.
                    As a TDS-addled asshole, I’m certain you have cites such as “You can keep your doctor!”
                    Ooops.
                    Fuck off and die.

              3. Of course he’s conspiratorial. We are now in year six of proven and ongoing conspiracies against him. The Russia thing is a proven hoax. The democrats impeached him over a phones call. And again he was out of office. And there’s so much more.

                Are you really this obtuse?

          5. It’s not just “nanny state restrictions” on the left, it is a putsch. It is a power grab meant to reinstate royalty in the Americas – guess who the royalty will be and the fate of the rest of us.

            1. It’s a vast conspiracy! Everyone is in on it! It’s completely reasonable to believe that thousands of unconnected people with different agendas and causes are secretly working together to overthrow American democracy!

              1. No, Nelson, just a bunch of TDS-addled assholes like you.

          6. “The loss of respect for the office of the President was a feature of government from 2017-2021.”
            What world have you been living in for the last 35 years?
            The loss of respect for the Office of the President was already starting at the end of the Reagan Administration and began in earnest in the Clinton presidency and has continued through every president since.
            The more power we give Presidents and the more power Congress cedes to the Executive in the name of Partisanship power-grabs, the more the slide accelerates.

            1. Fair point. I would actually tag Nixon as the beginning of the decline.

              And I completely agree that Congress ceding control to the executive is a huge problem.

          7. “The loss of respect for the office of the President was a feature of government from 2017-2021. The chance of anyone matching the destruction of Trump is vanishingly small.”

            Loss of respect by whom? The main stream media is almost an entire left wing monopoly – by left-wing here, I mean fascist, in the sense that they wish to rule the country by regulation and forcing third parties – businesses – to push out their propaganda and to do the dirty work of firing people who have had the misfortune to have had Covid (and therefore have 7 times better protection than any of the vaccines) to take the actual risk of taking a vaccine largely untested over a period of time sufficient to determine if it has serious negative effects.

            My question is, in the light of the much superior protection of recovery from an actual Covid infection, as determined by the large Israeli study – Why? To what purpose are the hundred million plus best protected citizens forced to get a vaccine that grants diminishing protection, and places at substantial risk of side effects? And why does the left and their lapdog media attempt to silence any opposition – not refute, as one does in science and reason, but to silence?

            1. Do you actually believe that “we’re the good guys and they’re the bad guys, we can do no wrong and they can do no right, angels vs. devils” nonsense or are you just trolling?

              1. TDS-addled asshole, do you think a strawman like that is due anything other than an insult, TDS-addled asshole?

          8. If we had gone into Afghanistan, annihilated everyone, and left, no one would be messing with us today.

      3. Fuck you, too.

      4. Let’s go, Brandon!

      5. Oh, you will feel it. Trust me, you will. USA is not a country conducive to a leftist dictatorship.

    3. Fuck Joe Biden

    4. And fuck Alexander Hamilton, too.

      -jcr

  1. You’re asking lefties to stop being progressively more despotic. That ain’t gonna happen, they’ll always need more of other people’s money and obeisance.

    So yes, send them back to Commiefornia and close the border. I am fine with this.

    1. You’re asking lefties to stop being progressively more despotic. That ain’t gonna happen

      Certainly agree with the above.

      What evidence is there that the righties want to stop being more despotic? What specifically have Republicans done in the last 20 years to reduce the scope of executive power?

      1. Even on the right, we see that the lack of a basic moral case for “Leave other people the fuck alone” has been forgotten. Endless wars, No Child Left Behind, Immigration Restriction, Everyone should own a house, Medicare Drug Benefits.

        Save for a very small number of politicians (which, to be fair, have tended to live on the right lately), almost nobody actually cares about a government heavily constrained in its scope and powers. Everyone is focused on outcomes, and in a world where the government represents more and more of our decision-making, those outcomes increasingly “require” a government solution.

        Contrast Reagan’s “The nine most terrifying words in the English language are: I’m from the Government, and I’m here to help,” to Bush’s “When somebody’s in pain, government’s got to move.” We went from talking about abolishing the DOE to No Child Left Behind.

        So yes, the Right, too, has forgotten the case for freedom. And as much as people will argue about the lesser weevil- which sometimes is necessary- even those making that case need to expect more of that lesser weevil, or it will forever doom us to choosing between two vermin.

        1. “So yes, the Right, too, has forgotten the case for freedom. And as much as people will argue about the lesser weevil- which sometimes is necessary- even those making that case need to expect more of that lesser weevil, or it will forever doom us to choosing between two vermin.”

          +++

        2. “…even those making that case need to expect more of that lesser weevil, or it will forever doom us to choosing between two vermin.”

          True, but if you remain aloof from both, don’t expect the ability to improve one.

        3. At this point, I will accept the lesser evil to thoroughly repudiate the greater.

          Totally fine with a temporary alliance with not-completely-despotic to take down the flagrantly fascist progressives.

        4. It’s a fool’s errand to try to change other people’s morals deliberately. You can influence them, and get them to change, often in the opposite direction of what you might have wanted, but forget thinking of morality as something that can be taught.

          Just work on the practical case to persuade them on individual issues. You won’t get conversion to your point of view globally, but you might get them on your side for this one thing. And the things add up.

          1. The CCP, Russians, Nazis, Fascists, Khymer Rouge, Venezuelan communists beg to disagree. You can deliberately get people to abandon their morals if you threaten them with enough mayhem – it explains the success of so many totalitarian regimes in getting their citizens to rob and to murder each other.

            1. Yep. Any stick fits the glove when it comes time for morale improvement sessions.

              We’re starting off soft with inclusion in public spaces and right to work.

        5. And anyone has to wonder why President Trump had faithful supporters —- DE-Regulation, Tax Cuts, and more Federalism than we’ve seen in over a Half-a-Century.

          Yes; It’s was a very minor shift – but at the rate the Nazi-Regime is taking over the USA any tiny bit of point towards freedom should be cherished and encouraged.

          1. Federalism under trump? Please…. He was the President who claimed the President’s power over the states was total.

            1. And yet; Countless times he announced State Powers over his own like mask handling not stomping out CHAZ of Seattle, etc, etc, etc…

              Ironically; King Biden even admitted to as much during election campaigning only to later PROVE himself the almighty King.

              Ya; for some people ACTIONS mean more than words.

              1. There’s a word for people whose ACTIONS don’t match their words. They’re called liars.

                And yet that didn’t stop your whining when Biden/Harris merely said stupid things. Somehow I find Harris’s wishing americans a good Memorial day weekend(which Trumpanzees threw a hissy fit over) less offensive than Trump claiming he has total dictatorial powers or demanding the government seize american’s guns without due process.

                1. Never-mind the Biden mask mandate, vaccine mandates, minimum wage increases, Commission of Court Stuffing, Multiple Climate Change mandates..

                  And lets just pretend Tumps EO to list bump stocks as a machine-gun was “seizing american’s guns” – or that the courts didn’t throw the attempt out the window.

                  Or that Biden isn’t doing EXACTLY the same thing 100000x worse.
                  https://nypost.com/2021/04/08/biden-announces-new-executive-orders-on-gun-control/

            2. BTW; Which ?power? did he claim that on? If it was an enumerated power he was 100% correct.

              1. There is no enumerated power in the constitution that gives the president total power despite.

                1. You have a point… But in the whirl-wind of USA Nazism going on in this country that point is amidst a haystack.

  2. Good article.

    If Americans, then, are going to get out from under the thumbs of people they regard as enemies, they most likely will have to assert control over their lives without cooperation from further up the political food chain.

    We used to be able to do this by forming civil associations. De Toqueville saw this.

    It is clear that if each citizen, as he becomes individually weaker and consequently more incapable in isolation of preserving his freedom, does not learn the art of uniting with those like him to defend it, tyranny will necessarily grow with equality.
    Here it is a question only of the associations that are formed in civil life and which have an object that is in no way political.
    The political associations that exist in the United States form only a detail in the midst of the immense picture that the sum of associations presents there.
    Americans of all ages, all conditions, all minds constantly unite. Not only do they have commercial and industrial associations in which all take part, but they also have a thousand other kinds: religious, moral, grave, futile, very general and very particular, immense and very small; Americans use associations to give fêtes, to found seminaries, to build inns, to raise churches, to distribute books, to send missionaries to the antipodes; in this manner they create hospitals, prisons, schools. Finally, if it is a question of bringing to light a truth or developing a sentiment with the support of a great example, they associate. Everywhere that, at the head of a new undertaking, you see the government in France and a great lord in England, count on it that you will perceive an association in the United States.

    1. De Tocqueville’s America bled out after the 1930s. The urge to protect people from themselves was too strong. We could have recovered from the public works projects, but when we went and saved Europe, it was over.

      1. That timeframe seems accurate. But I don’t think the cause was really out of our control. It wasn’t really gummint. It was the same cause as ‘Bowling Alone’. Suburbanization was the last mass migration of Americans but existing associations did not move and new associations did not arise in their place. And the time of day when civil associations were once the main activity was replaced by the pervasive, passive, mass-broadcast, and home-focused radio and TV.

        But it may not be possible to reverse any of that if we no longer know how to associate.

        1. The military-industrial complex was the death knell of civil associations. It drew the population into the cities and the massive construction boom furthered the institutionalization of finance, hospitality, education, and even religion. Megabanks, hotel and restaurant chains, government funding for universities, and megachurches displaced institutions where people knew each other. People stopped relying on neighbors and started relying on policing, which ironically lead to explosions in crime and ever more policing. All the while, government grew. Administrators replaced volunteers. Charity declined.

          Since the Great Depression, America has been driven by fear. Eisenhower tried to warn us.

          1. Actually, I’d say the welfare state, and not the military-industrial complex destroyed civil associations.

            Fraternal Organizations, Mutual Aid Societies, and all the rest were replaced, in some cases by law, by some government program or other.

    2. I wouldn’t join an association that meets in a restaurant that requires me to wear a mask when I get up from my table. If I lived in LA, I’d stay home and look for another place to live.

    3. Notice that the Dems are forcing loyalty tests on the military and forcing out any who will not be loyal to them rather than the Constitution. Now why would politicians do that? Could that have to do with gaining control of all of the weapons in the country? How about the defunding of the cops and making life impossible for them – to be replaced by whom, exactly, Antifa? BLM?

      1. What the hell are you talking about? Loyalty tests? Forcing out people who “will not be loyal to them rather than the Constitution”? What sort of fever dream are you living in?

        1. True or not; The Dems have NEVER liked any loyalty to the U.S. Constitution in fact the DNC Platform pretends it doesn’t even exist.

          Dems champion [WE] mob National Socialist Authoritarianism. Everyone knows that.

          Republicans to Democrats – STOP being enemies of this CONSTITUTIONAL Union of Republican States Nation.

          Democrats to Republicans – STOP being enemies to our National Socialist Democracy.

          Which party is the USA Patriots and which party is the USA Enemy?

        2. Nelson, I know it’s dark and muffled with your head so far up Sloppy Joe’s cornpop dispenser, but even you have to have seen the current admin purging anything not-prog.

          Military academy advisors… Prog only.
          Environmental councils… Trump appointments gone. Arts council, the right has left. Education boards, arctic environmental councils… List goes on and on and on.

          You daft fuck.

          1. This was the quote that I pushed back on:

            “Notice that the Dems are forcing loyalty tests on the military and forcing out any who will not be loyal to them rather than the Constitution.”

            I’m looking for some actual evidence that there is some sort if military purge going on based on a “loyalty test”. Hell, I’d love to see actual evidence of a “loyalty test” in the military, period.

            1. So you do not dispute that their are flagrantly ideological purges – loyalty tests – going on in other areas?

              https://theintercept.com/2021/05/17/military-pentagon-extremism-social-media/?utm_source=fark&utm_medium=website&utm_content=link&ICID=ref_fark

              Now, how has the current admin been definine extremism? Heavy emphasis on domestic, and right-wing, yeah?

              You daft fuck.

              1. I imagine they will define it like most rational people, law enforcement, and the intelligence community have been for a long while now. The fact that there are a lot of violent groups out there is a bad thing. The fact that for years, under Obama, Trump, and now Biden, there have been warnings about the rise of domestic terror organizations (particularly on the far right), from the FBI should concern everyone. It’s the “terror” part that matters, not which wing the nuts are from.

                That article isn’t talking about loyalty tests. It’s talking about extremists, particularly violent extremists, in the Pentagon/military. That isn’t a “loyalty test”. And it certainly isn’t “forcing out any who will not be loyal to them rather than the Constitution”.

                You seem to have a very loose, vague, and moderate-inclusive definition of a “prog”. It seems like it’s “anyone who isn’t pro-Trump” or perhaps “anyone who is comfortable with being a moderate”. If, like I do, someone resists cultural conservatism and is disgusted by Trump, in your mind they automatically are pro-Biden.

                Here’s how things work in the rational world: people generally support one party more than the other. Many of them (myself included) will split their ticket if someone too extreme is on the ballot for their preferred party. It’s why Trump underperformed other down-ballot Republicans. It’s why AOC and her band of idiots underperform up-ballot Democrats. Extremists turn off independents who lean one way or the other because they aren’t reasonable people. And these days there are more independents than Democrats or Republicans, mostly because they are increasingly poor at representing average Americans.

                You see the battle as being between right and left. I see the battle as being between the moderates and the extremists. And I am 100% on the side of the majority of Americans which, despite the raging of the two lunatic fringes, is in the center.

    1. What’s your intersectional victim score?

      1. So, a black pony?

    2. You’ll have to pony up a thorough amount of bread.

    3. And I want to give your pony the Pfizer vaccine or no pony for you!

  3. And we all know who is to blame: Mark Zuckerberg.

    1. What is Jack Dorsey, chopped liver?

      1. No, Jack Dorsey only wishes he was chopped liver.

        1. Both should be turned into scrapple.

  4. Trumpism was a reaction to having to live under the “I have a pen and a phone” excesses of the Obama Administration, whose dictatorial tendencies Reason approved of when it got them a policy they wanted like DACA. Biden is the natural extension of the hubris of the Obama mindset.

    1. Perhaps, but there certainly wasn’t a strong backlash from Trump supporters over Trump’s own use of the pen. Much of what he accomplished was through executive action alone.

      The point was that it seems that Trumpism was less about the exercise of executive power and more about the types of power being exercised. That seems to be the main thrust of the article as well.

      1. “Trumpism was a reaction to having to live under the “I have a pen and a phone” excesses of the Obama…”

        TDS-addled assholes, Mickey and Leo as examples, try to hide their adolescent whining about how Trump wasn’t a good daddy-figure by inventing lies in the hopes other will ignore their raging TDS.
        We won’t -fuck off and die.

      2. When Trump issued the executive order implementing the CDC eviction moratorium, the reaction of half the right-wing commenters here was outright denial of reality that he had done it.

        1. Naturally, the steaming pile of shit Mike is lying. I seem to recall most saying is was one of his mistakes.
          But I’m sure steaming pile of lefty shit Mike has a cite, right steaming pile of lefty shit.

        2. How long was Trump’s order? Pretty limited and set to expire, yeah?

          How does Trump’s order being bad make Sloppy Joe perpetuating it indefinitely NOT bad?

      3. Like what? Obama repealed immigration law with the pen. Biden has imposed mandates with a pen

        1. Trump imposed an eviction moratorium, tariffs, bumpstock ban, border wall funding, conscription of the pharmaceutical industy all with a pen. There’s probably more that I’m missing, but he certainly didn’t shy away from using executive actions as some limited government icon.

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_executive_actions_by_Donald_Trump

          1. “Trump imposed an eviction moratorium, tariffs, bumpstock ban, border wall funding, conscription of the pharmaceutical industy all with a pen.”

            Pick them cherries, TDS-addled asshole; maybe someone will be fooled into thinking you’re not a dishonest ignoramus.

            1. I’m confused. Do you disagree with any of my claims as to Trump’s executive actions?

              Or are you struggling (as usual) to make a point beyond ad hominem?

              1. “…I’m confused…”

                There’s a good chance you are, given your pathetic IQ level, but it’s more likely you’re simply a lying piece of TDS-addled shit hoping to hide behind a willful inability to understand “cherry picking”, asshole.
                Stuff your TDS up your ass – your head’s begging for company.

      4. But that’s how I am too. I don’t care much about the form, just the content. How it gets done is of little consequence, but consequence is of consequence. I want more freedom, and if it has to be “imposed” by The Monitors, that’d be fine, thanks.

      5. “backlash from Trump supporters over Trump’s own use of the pen. Much of what he accomplished was through executive action”

        Much of what he accomplished by pen was VOIDING Democrats fat-pen laws…

        Of which Biden immediately RE-ENACTED + 1000 MORE E.O.’s

        “No, No, No; My hands not in the cookie jar – the glass just makes it look that way.”, Says the partisan hacks who have no other principle than to which [WE] gang they’ve sworn allegiance too.

        There’s a lot of Trump supported appalled by Trumps hand in the cookie jar – so STOP with the compulsive need to paint faulty narratives.

    2. “Reason approved of” = published an article from a George Mason University Professor of Law that explained why he/she? thought the action was technically legal, but also included plenty of cautionary statements about the overuse of Presidential powers:

      https://reason.com/2014/12/16/why-obamas-immigration-policy-is-constit/

      There is the actual Reason, and there’s the Reason that exists in right-wing commenter’s minds. Do you ever go and check what Reason actually wrote before you throw these critiques around?

      1. Don’t be silly. Broad overgeneralization, fact-free invective, and conspiracy theories are the bread-and-butter of the wingnuts of American politics.

        1. Fire extinguisher, horse dewormer and Russian collusion. Those darn wingnut conspiracy theorists.

    3. Trumpism was a reaction to having to live under the “I have a pen and a phone” excesses of the Obama Administration,

      I’d say it had a lot more to do with the “Oh, HELL NO” reaction when the Democrats nominated Hillary Clinton, a woman whose arrogance is matched only by her incompetence, avarice, power lust, corruption and misanthropy.

      Trump was abrasive, Hillary is EVIL.

      -jcr

      1. Yeah, if Obama could have run for a third term I expect he would have beat Trump handily in 2016.

        Nominating Trump was the kind of horrifying strategic blunder that only a Hillary Clinton candidacy could (temporarily) rescue the Republicans from.

        1. To TDSs-addled assholes like you…

        2. Obama sucked. Hard

      2. Yes. 100%.

        More people hold faith in Bigfoot than Hillary, and Sasquatch never left his mountains to campaign.

    4. Presidential overreach and the imperial presidency is not a one-party problem. It isn’t even a one-generation problem. Since Nixon, if not earlier, each President has claimed more and more power from the Legislative and Judicial branches. Regardless of party, they build off of what their predecessor achieved. And Americans, especially on the right, seem perfectly fine with creeping authoritarianism. While Trump was the worst so far, I predict that within 20 years he will look like a JV-level player.

      1. “…While Trump was the worst so far,…”

        Nelson is a TDS-addled pile of lefty shit

      2. Trump was worse than Biden is now?

        Are you sure about that, or is the TDS still chafing?

        1. Yes. Trump was worse than every other American President. Andrew Jackson and Andrew Johnson are tied for a distant second.

          1. Yes. Not because he is orange. Because he was a bad President with bad policies, an adversarial relationship with the truth, and a completely transactional belief in the Presidency and America.

            1. Seems our newest TDS-addled piece of shit is long on claims, dead silent on specifics.

            2. Transactional… You mean like Joe and Hunter being flagrantly pay to access?

              Bad policies… You mean like tanking the economy and trying to pass more money than budget before the dust settles? Like alienating most of our international allies? Like abandoning Americans overseas and allowing the rebuilding of a terrorist state that tortures opposition?

              1. Yes, Trump did all of those things. I’m glad you recognize how bad a President he was.

            3. Exactly like Biden… so what’s your point? Biden is as good as Herbert Hoover, and as mindless a prohibitionist. Both are coercive jerks and figureheads for predatory collectivism.

  5. Didn’t bother reading. A both sides article?

    1. As per editorial requirements.

    2. TDS is a hellofa drug to quit.

      No mention of the Lightbringer’s role in any of this. That might get TooSilly snubbed by his Cornville hipster cronies.

    3. No. BadOrangeMan worse.

  6. It’s amazing how many Democrats and Republicans want the same thing.

    1. And frightening. Very, very frightening.

      1. Like blaming Trump for, oh, about everything, TDS-addled asshole?

    2. It’s amazing how many Democrats *PRETEND* they want the same thing as Republicans.

      MANY Republicans WANT to give Democrats EXACTLY what they *PRETEND* to want. Their OWN Nazi-Regime.

      Ironically; They can Nazi-Up their Cities all they want under a Republican Dream-come-True which is a Constitutional USA. YET, that’s not what they push for now is it???? They want FEDERAL (National) Socialism so they use NATIONAL THEFT to fund their failing utopias.

  7. One simple improvement would be to stop calling politicians “leaders”. It plants the suggestion that they are leaders/masters and we are followers/minions.

    Even Reason writers routinely call politicians “leaders”, which is mindblowing.

    1. “One simple improvement would be to stop calling politicians “leaders”. It plants the suggestion that they are leaders/masters and we are followers/minions.”

      But… but…. without leaders, we would have chaos!!! How would we know what mattered, what to think, or how to fix it? Hell, how would we know which toilet is the better one to buy? Imagine everyone living their own lives, while respecting their neighbors right to live theirs? ANARCHY!!! (or.. libertarianism, with a small “L.”)

      1. “Imagine everyone living their own lives, while respecting their neighbors right to live theirs?”

        From your lips to God’s ears.

          1. What ever happened to public servant?

            1. To be served and project.

    2. “Even Reason writers routinely call politicians “leaders”, which is mindblowing.

      Not if you examine when it is used, and in what context. Then it is not remotely mindblowing, merely indicative of their true sympathies.

    3. You know who else preferred the title “Leader” to mere “Politician?”

    4. “Fuhrers” is the technically correct term for the Positive Christian half of The Kleptocracy. “Chairmen” is the politically correct term from the perspective of the communistic initiators of force, though Councilmembers works for lesser ranks. But none of their representatives vomiting into the Reason comments punchbowl has ever read the original LP platform. Instead they tilt over chapters of Edward Bellamy books they’ve also never read but absorbed via social pressure. Looters exclude us from their debates, yet come here to spew venom and hatred.

  8. “Way Too Many People Want an All-Powerful President”

    Most notably all the writers and editors at Reason who lied about and demonized Trump (the most libertarian president since Cal Coolidge), and who have failed to criticize the left wing dictatorship imposed by Biden/Harris that is taking away many freedoms from Americans.

    1. Donald Trump Flat out said that his power was total. Hardly Libertarian.

  9. Wanting a powerful Presidency is nothing new. In 1787, at the Constitutional Convention, future poor shot and Broadway star, Alexander Hamilton, proposed that the President be elected for life, by electors elected by other electors, and that the President would have the power to appoint and remove governors of the states. Senators, too, would be elected for life. Imagine what the U.S. would look like if Hamilton’s views had prevailed?

    1. The openly campaigned for an elected monarch. He didn’t want a President for life; he wanted a monarch, with all the powers that entailed at the time.

      Odd that they left that part out of the musical. And his participation in the slave trade.

      1. In ancient Rome, a dictator meant someone who had control over the army, the treasury and the laws. Like US presidents do now (Commander in Chief, Presidential budget, executive orders.) Only the treasury is still nominally in the hands of the peoples’ representatives in Congress, but they look to the White House to set the spending level and the priorities.

    2. Our Senators would be really old, like they are now?

    3. We could imagine all we could, and it wouldn’t tell us which politicians would’ve been elected for life, or what they’d’ve done. And what the US would look like would depend on that, not the mere fact of these people’s serving life terms, nor who else they’d have the power to appoint.

    4. Wow, talk about a dueling vision of America! How chilling—-BUUUURR!!!!

  10. Everyone yearns for a dictator that thinks just like they do, instead of understanding the compromise required to govern a vast and diverse population.

    So we continue the drive to polarizing opposites, doomed to fail.

      1. And we had one which wasn’t a dictator, never suggested he wanted to be, but TDS-addled assholes like you didn’t like mean tweets!
        Fuck off and die.

    1. Thinking that ‘compromise’ was en-grained in the enumerated powers of the U.S. Constitution. A National Union of State’s Government body shouldn’t act on anything but national matters.

      But those touting their ‘democracy’ above and beyond the USA’s very definition and en-grained compromise has led to a [WE] gang battle of the unlimited Gov-Gun-Power/Dictation and all because they are too lazy to *earn* what they want.

      Gov-Gun-Force =/= Wealth as the left would have people believe.

    2. Ah… another communist anarchist criticizing fascists and socialists. How original… but that ain’t “we”, Paleface.

  11. It is fine and all that Reason continues to look at, and wring its hands about, these symptoms. But part of the problem is that too many articles focus on symptoms, rather than the basic moral case for liberty. This often leads people to see the problems with our current government as a pragmatic one rather than a moral one.

    You can insist that governments are, by their nature, unable to out-plan the raw processing power of a free market where millions or billions of minds integrate near infinite data to allocate resources, but there will always be people insisting that is because of wreckers, kulaks and the absence of just the right Top Man.

    Sullum and Welch can look at how certain data may or may not support infinite lockdown, or masks everywhere or Vaccinations at gunpoint, but that is ceding the argument to whomever can find and amplify the right study.

    It is fine and all to point out the pragmatic costs of central planning, or unscientific basis behind Pandemic Security Theater, but that only gets us so far. Our country has forgotten the MORAL CASE for freedom.

    In fact, the only ones willing to make moral arguments in public, these days, is the socialists. “The Rich need to pay their fair share.” “We must protect mother earth.” “Our society is built on the original sin of Racism, and we must pay our penance.” These are all moral statements that cannot be pragmatically disproven. If a thousand “racist” millionaires must be sacrificed and their businesses shuttered, people will do it if they think it is morally right.

    Perhaps as Libertarian authors, the Reason staff just takes for granted that the Libertarian morality is just self evident. Likely, some of the authors actually have never thought deeply enough to GET the moral case for freedom. But Reason urgently needs people to make these basic moral cases. Stop arguing about viral load and scream, “It is morally wrong for the State to force others to protect society from a natural virus.” Talk less about the latest trillion dollars, and more about how wrong it is that the government is dictating basic freedoms.

    Make. The. Moral. Case. For. Freedom.

    1. Overt, freedom is a great thing, and maximizing it for the greatest number a worthy goal, but it is not the greatest thing for which all else – including public health and national survival – should be sacrificed. It seems that many here have fetishized the concept and every decision must be weighed on that scale. If increasing citizen A’s freedom causes citizen B’s death or dismemberment, or maybe just their mutual police department to go bankrupt and dissolve, then citizen’s A’s freedom might need a check. The ultimate freedom of bot A and B might benefit and flourish as opposed to withering. Freedom is a construct of advanced societies, not a basic of all or even most human societies.

      Wouldn’t a Libertarian strive for the greater freedom instead of the – forgive me – stupid one of opposing health measures that save lives with no other impact on autonomy? I got both shots and have not noticed increased surveillance or restrictions on my behavior. What am I missing

      1. You are missing that you are just too stupid to understand that is not how freedom works.

        Freedom is a construct of advanced societies, not a basic of all or even most human societies.

        There are over a thousand of years of philosophical and economic thought on that matter, but feel free to revel in your ignorance. Maybe there is something on Wikipedia you could link.

        Seriously, why the fuck do you come here of all place to deride freedom? They love that shit over at Jacobin.

        1. Chuck, our past is a question primarily for evolutionary biologists, not economists and philosophers. Our closet relatives are chimps and the related bonobos, and I assure you their social groupings are not constructed of free roaming individuals who agree on by-laws for decision making. They are not born, nor do they exist, outside of their biologically based social groups, and like us, without the slow education by society, they don’t know f..k about shinola. Survival is supreme, and free time to play is a luxury. We have more of that luxury now, and that’s a good thing, but don’t confuse it with the primary thing.

          1. PS Your impulse toward personal insults belies the weakness of your argument, or at least a lack of confidence. Try making points without the drama.

            1. Fuck off and die, steaming pile of shit.

            2. I feel your pain, loser.

            3. Your impulse toward personal insults belies the weakness of your argument

              An observation is not an argument. And it is not an impulse, it is a visceral response to your posts, which are an insult to the intelligence of all who read them.

              1. Any informed comment regarding the constant stream of bullshit from Joe is offered only for the benefit of other readers; it is not possible to ‘educate’ Joe, so he is worth insults and little else.
                Anyone who makes the claim that “freedoms” are a result of governments is, first, by definition, a steaming pile of lefty shit. Secondly, that person is also uneducated sufficiently to deny probably 75% of the time humans existed on this earth.
                I.e.; not capable of learning.

            4. In your case they are not so much insults as accurate representations.

              You may find the truth insulting, but it is within you power to be something other than the stupid, dishonest leftist that you are.

          2. Thank you so much for this!

            Is there a Socrates to your Plato? I want to make sure your teachers get the proper credit.

          3. Chuck, our past is a question primarily for evolutionary biologists, not economists and philosophers

            Christ on a cracker. This is below even for the low bar you’ve set for yourself.

            1. Of course Joe’s not cognizant that any ‘racial’ differences are vanishingly small.
              Further, I’m sure he’s entirely too stupid to understand his claim is mere justification for Master Race ‘theories’.

      2. “Overt, freedom is a great thing, and maximizing it for the greatest number a worthy goal, but it is not the greatest thing for which all else – including public health and national survival – should be sacrificed”

        No, this is exactly wrong. A country that “survives” at the price of freedom is wrong, and ought to be resisted as much as the self destructive country that immolates itself. The Soviet Union “survived” the Nazi invasion by (among other things) forcibly conscripting its men and forcing them to charge enemy lines at the threat of being shot in a brutal and- yes, evil- war of attrition. It was wrong then, regardless of whether the Soviet’s Survived, and we then saw another 50 years of brutal oppression that demonstrated the folly of surviving at any moral cost.

        “If increasing citizen A’s freedom causes citizen B’s death or dismemberment, or maybe just their mutual police department to go bankrupt and dissolve, then citizen’s A’s freedom might need a check.”

        Nobody here is insisting that Citizen A have the “freedom to cause citizen B’s death” and your inability to understand this demonstrates my point. You, Joe, are ignorant. You don’t have a clue what you are talking about because you lack a basic moral foundation. You are so steeped in tribal loyalty that your first instinct is to find a way to pin all the world’s ills on someone else.

        But I have hope for you Joe. Stick around a couple years, displaying your ignorance, and maybe you will start to make the switch. Maybe.

        1. Overt, your prescription for the Soviets in WW2 would have led to their – and probably our – defeat with unpredictable results that most would and should be happy didn’t occur. Defending the homeland from the Germans was a moment of pride then and now in an otherwise dreary past century for Russians, but that’s another story.

          In any case, you pose exactly as i expected and demonstrate the extreme misunderstanding of what freedom is and how best to defend it. Thanks for the example.

          1. “…In any case, you pose exactly as i expected and demonstrate the extreme misunderstanding of what freedom is and how best to defend it…”

            You demonstrate exactly how the left views “freedom”; under a thumb.
            Fuck off and die, Joe.

            1. His understanding of freedom is Arbeit Einhaltung Macht Frei

              1. Chumby, that’s what you’d be writing if Overt ran our war effort in WW2.

                1. LOL! Classic Friday!

                2. Germany wasn’t going to take the United States.
                  Whatever Russia was or could have been, they would have resisted German aggression and used the same delay/withdrawal tactics that worked to repel Napoleon as well as those Germans.

                  1. Germany wasn’t even going to take Russia, nor invade England; economically impossible.

                    1. The bombing campaign against England came about due to bad intelligence. It was intended to stave off an invasion that ironically had no support in England until they were bombed. I don’t remember if it was determined the intelligence was faked, but the French certainly had motive.

                      The attack on Russia was specifically to engage the Soviets in the north and draw them away from defense of the ports that were fed from the oil fields in the Middle East. They never intended to hold Soviet territory.

                      The 3rd Reich would have been ecstatic with Northern Europe. America was not needed to save England or Russia and should never have assisted the later. Eastern Europeans would arguably have fared better off under the Nazis than under the USSR. The German people are fairly pragmatic when not riled up. I have nothing against Belgium or Finland, but the French can go fuck themselves.

                      Better diplomacy and less interference in Europe could have prevented the war with Japan. Japan had already warred with the Soviets, and our alliance was an aggravating factor. That the Far East would have been better off under the Empire is debatable, but the Japanese would have been hard pressed to kill more people than Mao and Pol Pot and the other Communists have.

          2. Truly amazing!

            You manage to poopoo the death of 60 million Soviet citizens at the hands of their own government while also displaying a complete ignorance of the strategy of both the Soviets and the Germans and of military strategy in general. Then dismiss someone else’s argument about freedom without ever offering a coherent description of it yourself.

            Please tell us what school you attended. I would lay odds on a state school with a degree in IT.

            1. Sure Chuck, of course the Germans would have been solicitous to those Soviet souls and offered back rubs before the gas chambers. Most of the Soviets killed by Stalin expired before WW2, in which they lost between 15-25 million, and thus saving us from a greater sacrifice. They broke Hitler’s back, not the US.

              I did attend a state school, as do most of those without a spare $quarter million (much less in my day) and I have no degree.

              I was too free!

              1. “I did attend a state school,..”

                Living proof a government school can make you dumber than dirt.
                You’re full of shit Joe, fuck off and die.

              2. They broke Hitler’s back, not the US.

                Are you fucking kidding me? You missed a few things in reviewing WW2 on Wikipedia. There are some 90 year-old veterans who I am sure could still kick your ass that would like to have a few words with you.

              3. Say it ain’t so, Joe.

              4. So you’re a personal failure, which explains why you like socialism to take other people’s money to give you the life you’re unqualified to achieve by yourself.

                Got it, loser.

        2. Worth pointing out here that the Russian army was in truly dire straits when Hitler’s minions invaded because Stalin had just about destroyed its officer corps with his paranoia-driven purges.

          Stalin knew he fully deserved a bullet in the back of his head, so he tried like hell to off anyone who might have the gumption to do so.

          Piling up the bodies in a war of attrition is what regimes that don’t give a shit about saving their own people’s lives will do.

          -jcr

          1. Honest historians usually refer to the Soviet war machine as a meat grinder. The heroes of Stalingrad were forced to stay until they were completely cut off. Their units had political officers who executed dissenters.

            1. True cancel culture.

              1. That actually made me laugh out loud. Yes, the Soviets would have understood where we are headed.

                Orwell and Rand both included cancel culture in their novels.

                1. You believe that only the left engages in cancel culture? Interesting conclusion.

                  I see cancel culture as part of the illiberal instincts of authoritarians of all political persuasions. It is the unholy offspring of pressure campaigns and litmus tests.

                  1. You believe that only the left engages in cancel culture? Interesting conclusion.

                    That conclusion is a complete fabrication. But feel free to point out the Western equivalent to Soviet political officers.

                    1. There was the Stasi in East Germany and the Securitate in Romania. Oh wait.

                    2. And Pinchot in Chile, but not on the scale of the others. There’s not that many people in Chile to throw into the ocean

      3. I haven’t muted you yet, as I wait to see if you post something that isn’t immediately derogatory. I do enjoy dialogue with persons who do not agree with me; it challenges my beliefs and allows me to further refine and put into words what I do and do not want in the society in which I live. Hell, now and then I even change my mind about something.

        Ok, I see where you are coming from. Low on natural rights [you know, life, liberty, pursuit of happiness stuff] but seemingly very high on the “common good” and believing we must all give up something in order to live in a peaceful and accommodating society.

        That I believe, assuming you are not just trolling here and posting shit simply for the purpose of getting a “fuck you” reaction, is where it issue is. The problem with subverting individual rights to common good is that is becomes the theme, rather than the exception. Take a look at what has been going on in Australia; is that what you want to see here in the US? That the government kicks the asses of those you do not like or agree with?

        We all make compromises; we don’t drive like we’re on the Autobahn [I found the experience overrated myself] in deference to safety concerns for ourselves and others; we don’t drive intoxicated; we don’t steal or engage in illegal trading, and on and on. I believe most people get this, that we can’t just do “whatever we want whenever or wherever we want.” Most here claim to be libertarians, not anarchists [“Deadwood is fun to watch but I wouldn’t want to live there with “no law at all].”

        But I sense you are going a tad deeper on the matter; would this include vaccine mandates, mask mandates, regulations against “offensive” language or expression, gun control [that apply almost exclusively to those, the vast majority of gun owners, who do not and will not commit crimes]…the list can grow and expand until we find ourselves living in a country that might not as well have separated from Great Britain 245 years ago.

        1. Quo, in all things I try to be a pragmatist and so degrees are important to me, with principles being abstract goals, not fetishes. They are nonetheless valuable and signal our highest aspirations in a real world which I believe to be by accident, not design. Yes, principles should not be violated, even if enforcing them comes with a cost, but if survival, or compromise between competing individual or group rights is necessary, let’s do it. That’s why we have a democracy with protection of minority rights. I am rambling some here as I am thinking this out and don’t have it memorized.

          Specifically, I think case by case is the best way to make close calls, not by principle. On vaccine mandates, yes, why not? What “freedom” in the case of these particular vaccines and this particular virus is so important, pleasurable, or principled as to rule against public health? No one is being hog tied and shot in the butt, but if you don’t want it, don’t expect to be allowed risky behavior amongst your fellow Americans. Masks, same thing, and the science is clear on both of these, though a true Libertarian would, I expect, say the science is irrelevant.

          Guns, yes for control, and I own one. The principle – as with vaccines – is already established without meaningful loss of liberty – your kids get vaccines to go to school and you can’t own nuclear weapons. By the way, the most important gun rules should be for registering and against high velocity small caliper weapons – like AR-15s who, by the laws of physics (damage increases directly by weight, but exponentially by speed) and design (small caliper rounds mean low recoil and thus maximum control by the shooter) explode bodies beyond the ability of doctors to fix the damage – look it up.

          Offensive language – only swearig in public, but too late on that as even “conservatives” say piss in public.

          I look forward to further discussion with you on these or any other matters and maybe we’ll both learn something, or at least have fun. I am supposed to be working (self employed) so may be spotty in response.

          1. degrees are important to me, with principles being abstract goals, not fetishes

            Masks, same thing, and the science is clear on both of these

            the most important gun rules should be for registering and against high velocity small caliper weapons

            Offensive language – only swearig in public

            maybe we’ll both learn something, or at least have fun

            Keep ’em coming kid. You’re a riot!

            1. Chuck, I’d be embarrassed to be posting nothing over and over.

              Do you have something you want to say?

              1. Joe, the fact that you’re not embarrassed by what you post says a lot.
                Fuck off and die.

              2. Joe, I’d be embarrassed to be posting nothing over and over.

                Do you have something you want to say?

            2. The rationalization of authoritarianism is amazing to watch.

          2. It’s like you’ve never heard of a boiling frog, or death by a thousand cuts.

            No one is being hog tied and shot in the butt

            No, they’re just being prevented by force of law from gainful employment. Totally unrelated, and very different.

            Masks, same thing, and the science is clear on both of these,

            The science is absolutely not clear on masks, hence all the fighting, but tends towards the uselessness of the ubiquitous cloth “face covering.” But when you live soundbite to soundbite….

            “[I swear I own a gun even though I’m mistaking a measurement for a brake part, but the most commonly owned rifle in the country is just too dangerous to be legal.]”

            Here’s the rub: libertarians believe that the government exists to protect our rights. You believe the government exists to protect your person from life’s dangers. You advocate constantly for the very thing Franklin’s famous quote warns us against, and I reject your suggestions entirely.

            1. Claptrap, most of the federal workers were already required to be vaccinated for other diseases, and if they didn’t like it, we can assume they would have already found other employment. No one is guaranteed employment with a specifc entity.

              You’re not up to date. Masks have absolutely been proven to be effective at minimizing transmission of Covid,a nd of course it would be. Did you really need a study to show that interfering with transmission of air particles between humans would minimize transmission of a disease.? Do you want a study to confirm that if you step in front of a Mack truck it will f..k you up?

              1. Covid is smaller than the pores on a fully fitted and sealed KN95 mask, which only blocks 40% of exhaled droplets under perfect conditions for less than 30 minutes.

                How effective is that cloth nosehanger nobody washes?

                Keep crying, loser.

          3. “By the way, the most important gun rules should be for registering and against high velocity small caliper weapons – like AR-15s who, by the laws of physics (damage increases directly by weight, but exponentially by speed) and design (small caliper rounds mean low recoil and thus maximum control by the shooter) explode bodies beyond the ability of doctors to fix the damage – look it up.”

            I really hope your other ideas are based more in science than this one. I have been studying internal, external, and terminal ballistics for right around forty years, and it doesn’t compute. Especially when considering that the most popular bullets used in the ammunition you describe are full-metal jacketed (FMJ) bullets which tend to pass through soft tissue, minimizing expansion, and therefore, not expend their energy in such tissue. FMJed bullets are used because expanding bullets were “outlawed” by the Geneva convention. They are also less likely to be deformed from rough handling, which would potentially decrease both their functionality and accuracy.

            You are not likely to see a hunter, who desires an efficient “kill” to use them. Nor will target shooters use them — there are more accurate designs for that purpose.

            1. Jefferson, the rounds are not explosive, but the effct on tissue of high velocity rounds is to explode it.

              “As I opened the CT scan last week to read the next case, I was baffled. The history simply read “gunshot wound.” I have been a radiologist in one of the busiest trauma centers in the United States for 13 years, and have diagnosed thousands of handgun injuries to the brain, lung, liver, spleen, bowel, and other vital organs. I thought that I knew all that I needed to know about gunshot wounds, but the specific pattern of injury on my computer screen was one that I had seen only once before.

              In a typical handgun injury, which I diagnose almost daily, a bullet leaves a laceration through an organ such as the liver. To a radiologist, it appears as a linear, thin, gray bullet track through the organ. There may be bleeding and some bullet fragments.

              I was looking at a CT scan of one of the mass-shooting victims from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, who had been brought to the trauma center during my call shift. The organ looked like an overripe melon smashed by a sledgehammer, and was bleeding extensively. How could a gunshot wound have caused this much damage?

              The reaction in the emergency room was the same. One of the trauma surgeons opened a young victim in the operating room, and found only shreds of the organ that had been hit by a bullet from an AR-15, a semiautomatic rifle that delivers a devastatingly lethal, high-velocity bullet to the victim. Nothing was left to repair—and utterly, devastatingly, nothing could be done to fix the problem. The injury was fatal.

              A year ago, when a gunman opened fire at the Fort Lauderdale airport with a 9 mm semiautomatic handgun, hitting 11 people in 90 seconds, I was also on call. It was not until I had diagnosed the third of the six victims who were transported to the trauma center that I realized something out of the ordinary must have happened. The gunshot wounds were the same low-velocity handgun injuries that I diagnose every day; only their rapid succession set them apart. And all six of the victims who arrived at the hospital that day survived.

              Routine handgun injuries leave entry and exit wounds and linear tracks through the victim’s body that are roughly the size of the bullet. If the bullet does not directly hit something crucial like the heart or the aorta, and the victim does not bleed to death before being transported to our care at the trauma center, chances are that we can save him. The bullets fired by an AR-15 are different: They travel at a higher velocity and are far more lethal than routine bullets fired from a handgun. The damage they cause is a function of the energy they impart as they pass through the body. A typical AR-15 bullet leaves the barrel traveling almost three times faster than—and imparting more than three times the energy of—a typical 9mm bullet from a handgun. An AR-15 rifle outfitted with a magazine with 50 rounds allows many more lethal bullets to be delivered quickly without reloading.

              I have seen a handful of AR-15 injuries in my career. Years ago I saw one from a man shot in the back by a swat team. The injury along the path of the bullet from an AR-15 is vastly different from a low-velocity handgun injury. The bullet from an AR-15 passes through the body like a cigarette boat traveling at maximum speed through a tiny canal. The tissue next to the bullet is elastic—moving away from the bullet like waves of water displaced by the boat—and then returns and settles back. This process is called cavitation; it leaves the displaced tissue damaged or killed. The high-velocity bullet causes a swath of tissue damage that extends several inches from its path. It does not have to actually hit an artery to damage it and cause catastrophic bleeding. Exit wounds can be the size of an orange….”

              https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2018/02/what-i-saw-treating-the-victims-from-parkland-should-change-the-debate-on-guns/553937/

              1. Joe, stuff your gun regs up your ass so your head has come company.
                And A-2, asshole.

              2. “Jefferson, the rounds are not explosive, but the effct on tissue of high velocity rounds is to explode it.”

                You are an uninformed (perhaps misinformed) idiot.

                All bullets cause expansion cavities. Some more so than others. There is no explosion, and the only people who speak of one are either ignorant or have an agenda.

                Regardless, even if you understanding of terminal ballistics was remotely accurate or coherent it is still stupid.

                People have a right to arms. Period. Not because they cause minimal harm, but because they indeed can be lethal.

                That is the point of a weapon.

                1. Extended pinkie grip (ie, +1)

              3. Mr Joe: Comparing ammunition fired by a rifle to that fired in a handgun is apples and oranges apart.

                Long guns, including shotguns and your grandpa’s single-shot twenty-two, and semi-auto rifles, account for a tiny, TINY fraction of homicides in this country.

                Just be glad that these insane mass-shooters aren’t fond of 12-gauge shotguns, or, for that matter, aren’t inclined to train themselves on high-power bolt-actions.

              4. Holy fuck are you an ignorant fool. Please stop talking, it’s embarrassing to even read.

          4. you show a very wrong understanding of our constitution when you say “That’s why we have a democracy with protection of minority rights”. no we don’t. our constitution protects individual rights, not minority groups. it seems you support things like “vaccine” mandates and therefore do not respect individual rights. my conclusion is that you hate america and our system of government.

            1. What he said wasn’t “very wrong”. Speaking inexactly about minority and individual rights as if they are the same thing is quite common, and, being even more pedantic than your comment, an individual _is_ a minority of one.

          5. Guns, yes for control, and I own one.

            Great reason for any decent human being to arm themselves, then. As long as power-hungry scumbags are armed, everyone else should be, too.

            -jcr

          6. “By the way, the most important gun rules should be for registering and against high velocity small caliper weapons – like AR-15s who, by the laws of physics (damage increases directly by weight, but exponentially by speed) and design (small caliper rounds mean low recoil and thus maximum control by the shooter) explode bodies beyond the ability of doctors to fix the damage – look it up.

            That’s the point. If I wanted the bad guy to survive and be uninjured, I’d have a pillow fight with him. You’re the type of gun owner that bought a gun for the bona fides and have it locked away in the basement with granny’s quilt.

            I believe people should be armed with the most powerful, legal weapon that they can competently use. From reading your posts and your views on government power, your idea of gun ownership is just window dressing. I also think that you see a country like Australia and wish that that form of government could be implemented here in the US. I believe you would support some type of mandatory gun buyback so that the government would be unopposed in its path to implement laws that would constrain liberty and maximize public safety, in your mind. You would totally be satisfied with the police beating somebody’s ass down in public, if he/she didn’t wear a mask or follow some public health decree. In your mind the price would be worth it. You’ve made it crystal clear where you stand on the idea of liberty with all the performative sealioning you do.

            1. Hell, I believe everybody should be required to have a gun. And we should repeal the NFA.

              1. And some free training, please… Seen so many new (Dim) gun owners at the range with absolutely no clue how to be responsible with firearms.

                Double action fully loaded snubnose carry weapon and they’re waving and peering down the barrel to show rifling. Argh!

          7. Yes because ARs are responsible for all the gang shootings.

            Your argument in favor of gun control boils down to guns are dangerous and inflict injury. Duh. When you’re using a gun to stop an attacker, do you grab your BB gun or your AR? Why?

            For some reason you don’t think people should be able to effectively protect themselves. No shotgun with buck shot? You think that does less damages than 223? What about 30-06? These will blow much larger hole in someone. But you’re right 223 lower recoil means it could be better in some situations for protecting yourself, which is a bad thing?

            1. Given no other choices I’d rather take an FMJ .223 round than a .54 caliber patched ball.

              That large lump of soft lead travelling at half the velocity of the jacketed pea will reliably kill a moose or a grizzly.

              1. .454 Casull. Can never be too safe…

      4. I’m a life-long libertarian, but I’m not longer interested in a libertarianism that isn’t coupled with adult behavior and a sense of responsibility, including civil responsibility. Selfish, childish libertarianism is not a good thing.

        1. “I’m a life-long libertarian,..”

          Stupid sumbitch can’t spell “liar”.

        2. So. Youre not a libertarian. Youre an authoritarian that wants government to force a subset of behaviors you agree with.

          1. Yep. Mikey is for curated, regulated freedom, and for people who follow all the rules.

            1. Whatever. Not what I said at all, but if you don’t get what I said I cannot explain it to you. It’s like trying to explain colors to a blind person.

              1. Texture, temperature and odor.

              2. This is the Argument From Intimidation anyone can look up on the Ayn Rand Lexicon online. It is ignorant, cowardly evasion disguised as supercilious hauteur and pitying condescension.

        3. If we REALLY care about saving lives at the expense of personal choice and personal freedom, why don’t we make sugar illegal, or institute a national exercise plan, or even set a national speed limit of 55 mph? Hell, we won’t even ban cigarettes or glyphosate. If we don’t give a shit that MILLIONS of people die of heart disease and cancer every year, then why do we suddenly care that thousands die of a virus that is 99% survivable to everyone else? This is blatant hypocrisy. You want the government to trample on personal freedom and autonomy to save lives; but only if they are saving lives taken by a virus and not lives taken by anything and everything else.

        4. So, the collective good before the individual good. Germans in 1933 thought that was libertarian as all get-out, and loved the initiation of force–provided the intentions were altruistic and not selfish.

      5. you’ve been brainwashed by the left into believing that the “vaccines” are in fact vaccines and that they should be forced on everyone “for the greater good”. first, the “vaccines” are not vaccines. they don’t provide immunity nor any protection from the virus. second, neither your nor anyone else has the right to force others to take any drug. if you were an actual liberatian then you’d understand the concept of basic individual rights. but given that these covid drugs are in fact worthless, forcing them on others is especially bad. you sound like a total commie.

        1. Yawn. If you were an actual thoughtful person you’d understand the wide spectrum of libertarian thought, and the value of eschewing dogma and simplistic idealogy, even in libertarianism.

          1. i have no patience for tyrants. i’m tired of the “vaccine” drug pushers and the tyrants pushing all the crap about covid. it’s all total bs.

            1. What shape do you use for your tin foil hat?

              1. The sock puppet variety

      6. Get off your knees, Barbie.

        1. Naah. Who’d shine those boots with his tongue?

      7. “Overt, freedom is a great thing, and maximizing it for the greatest number a worthy goal, but it is not the greatest thing for which all else – including public health and national survival – should be sacrificed.”

        Thank you for expressly stating your fascism.

        There’s always something more important than freedom for you, isn’t there?

        “Wouldn’t a Libertarian strive for the greater freedom instead of the – forgive me – stupid one of opposing health measures that save lives with no other impact on autonomy?”

        Benito, provide us concrete examples of these “measures that save lives with no other impact on autonomy”.

      8. You’re missing the fact that these “health measures” are imposed by people making decisions with limited information, necessarily more limited than people have about themselves. And to oppose a vaccine mandate is not to oppose vaccines or their existence or the fact that most people have chosen to get one. You seem to assume some sort of all-knowing benevolent government, which since you wax poetic about history you should know damn well that’s a fucking joke. What am I missing?

        1. See justme’s comment above. For many, being against mandates also means coming up with silly claims about vaccines.

          1. apparently you’re not up to date on the covid drugs. they are not vaccines by the definition of the word. in fact these drugs are worthless.

            https://alexberenson.substack.com/p/all-you-need-to-know-about-vaccine/comments

            1. You’re the one who was using an outdated definition of vaccine on another thread, right? Didn’t you listen to the guy who have you the real definition?

      9. Joe Friday new LAW — If you don’t provide me with my health concerns for free; I’m going to shoot you because that’s the way legal priorities should be in the USA.

        ^Ya; We know where leftards priorities are. Still the party of Slavery.

        And will just pretend the USA isn’t a Union of Republican State’s but instead a Monarchy for all the rest of those silly excuses like police department bankruptcy. Of course; if you recognized that the USA was a Constitutional Union of Republican State’s you’d see that your city or county would be the place for legislated charity (not encouraged but far better than National Theft).

    2. Reason (and many libertarians) seem to think that making the moral case for liberty won’t win over the skeptical, since people who buy the moral case are already libertarians. So they go for a utilitarian argument, for a system that hasn’t been tried in over a century. And even if people think that maybe more freedom will produce better results, they don’t want to take the chance on faith, because there’s no moral imperative to take the chance. Instead they try to stop the side that they know is moving in the wrong direction, even if the outcome isn’t optimal.

    3. The moral case for freedom is that if you think it’s moral, that’s the moral case for it. That moral case was made a long time ago, and it ain’t worth a hill of beans. You can never deliberately make anyone else’s mind up about that.

      If all you do is make the moral case, which is a million restatements of, “I think freedom is the right thing,” then you never discuss the facts. And it’s the facts that might cause some people, whether they think freedom is the right thing, the wrong thing, or whatever, to allow you more freedom. It’s all those people in the middle, who don’t have a strong belief one way or another about freedom (but really, there’s nobody who’s against it per se. Nobody ever thinks, I want oppression, of any kind, no matter, as long as people are unfree) who decide that this particular thing is good, bad, or indifferent, and so might be the swing vote over whether it’s allowed or not.

      1. Making a case isn’t the same thing as stating a platitude. Look at the Enlightenment.

        In a world with a dominant moral code that was established, disseminated, and propagandized by powerful religious organizations, political thinkers took the time to put forth a moral philosophy at odds with the “morality” of the past. People read and were convinced by a new moral view that rejected religious authorities and traditional aristocracy. The ideas of the Enlightenment led directly to the radical experiment in democracy that we live in today.

        The ideals of libertarianism are appealing to American culture. People these days shy away from large moral arguments because people who don’t like moderate ideals will argue semantics, throw out ad hominem attacks, accuse them of being fascists, ascribe false motives to them, and generally make it a nightmare. One of the things I like about VC and Reason is that the articles are willing to forcefully assert positions that are, by and large, moderate. Even the more extreme positions and posters are willing to put themselves out there and suffer the simpletons who throw out “fascist”, “idiot”, etc. at the drop of a hat. It’s why, as awful as I find his worldview and smugness, I think Blackman should be admired for putting forceful ideas out there and defending them.

        Making the moral case for freedom, liberty, and small, effective government is the only way to convince people. Of course, the first step is to reclaim those terms from the people who have distorted them for partisan gain.

      2. Roberta should read “Moral Rights and Political Freedom” by Tara Smith. It starts with a definition of moral ethics.

    4. Ayn Rand made that very same point—repeatedly and forcefully.

    5. Ayn Rand had done all that by 1968 when Reason began. Tara Smith at UTexas re-derived all the theory from contemporary (1940s-50s) sources and no looters dare come to terms with her. Objectivist impersonators like NAMBLA Boy and the anointed priesthood only muddy the waters. So we are now at practical implementations like good platforms, non-communist candidates and the law-changing leverage of spoiler votes as proven by past elections and the Solomon Asch experiment.

  12. The increasing dysfunction of Congress lends rationale to the increased use of presidential executive orders. Both filibusters – which are not even filibusters anymore – and straight party line voting have increased over the last decade plus, and the primary offenders have been Republicans. Of course, once lowered, everyone starts jumping over the bar. This may be explainable as the subconscious – or conscious with some – knowledge that the GOP represents a dwindling demographic group which feels threatened. Party power is disproportionate to the number of votes it can must at any given federal election, and protecting that is understandable, if disenfranchising for the actual majority of Americans. Hopefully we get through this without too much reaction and with the understanding that we share the same larger view of America, which includes a multi-racial, fair, economy and culture with strong safety net programs for the losers and also-rans of capitalism – no we are not in danger of becoming socialist, though socialist programs are popular. Racial harmony has never been stronger here and we are a model for success though our faults are over emphasized. Needed immigrants – like all the world’s advanced economies, we are not replacing ourselves, and some of our best achievers are newly American – are available and excited to come here, partly due to our world class universities and our freedom.

    If our political systems would revert to less partisanship, our bright future would be better.

    1. Fuck off and die, Joe. Your side wants nothing other than to enslave the others.

    2. Less government power is the answer.

    3. “…with the understanding that we share the same larger view of America, which includes a multi-racial, fair, economy and culture with strong safety net programs for the losers and also-rans of capitalism – no we are not in danger of becoming socialist, though socialist programs are popular.”

      Definitely a believe in the “common good” over the individual.

      I believe in equality under the law, equal opportunity, and fairness in that any given person or group should not be discriminated against or barred from participation. Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness for everyone. Not equality of outcomes because everything becomes a “human right” at the end of the day.

      socialism: a political and economic theory of social organization which advocates that the means of production, distribution, and exchange should be owned or regulated by the community as a whole. [Yes you are]

      1. Some animals are more equal than others.

      2. Quo, I don’t believe in guaranteed outcomes, but I do favor ensuring equal opportunity, meaning greater help for the truck driver’s kid than the doctor’s kid.

        Public education, including public universities and all the various research institutions supported by taxes, public military, highways and infrastructure, and social security, and Medicare, are all socialistic enterprises. They exist within a capitalistic economy and in my opinion elevate the latter.

        1. I do favor ensuring equal opportunity, meaning greater help for the truck driver’s kid than the doctor’s kid

          Please, please, give us more of your wisdom. I haven’t yet pissed myself, but I am getting close.

          1. Is that what you’re doing? Both hands on the table, ok.

            1. Fuck off and die, asshole.

            2. More regarding our newest lefty shit Joe:
              They show up here from time to time in all earnest, assuming that we will all undergo conversion to the religion of government after we just read and understand their highly original, never-before-contemplated claims and arguments, and then are offended (OFFENDED!) when they are dismissed as lefty ignoramuses, finding that nothing presented is new. We’ve all heard the same lies attempting to justify the same socialist bullshit since most of us were in grammar school.
              What sort of egotistical asshole does it take to assume *HIS* insights have never before been considered?
              Well, one like Joe.

      3. “socialism: a political and economic theory of social organization which advocates that the means of production, distribution, and exchange should be owned or regulated by the community as a whole.”

        So the New York Stock Exchange is socialist? Interesting take.

        1. So the TDS-addled piece of shit thinks making up definitions does other than prove him a TDS-addled piece of shit?

    4. “The increasing dysfunction of Congress lends rationale to the increased use of presidential executive orders.”

      Because Congress not doing what the President wants is “dysfunction”, not, you know, BEING A SEPARATE BRANCH OF THE GOVERNMENT and all.

      “Both filibusters – which are not even filibusters anymore – and straight party line voting have increased over the last decade plus, and the primary offenders have been Republicans.”

      Do you know the number of filibusters the Democrats ran when Trump was President? You’d be surprised.

      “Hopefully we get through this without too much reaction and with the understanding that we share the same larger view of America,”

      No, we do not. You’re a fascist. I am not one.

      You’re a moron, Joe.

      1. damisek, legislation requires Congress to enact it and because of all too east obstructionist action – filibuster my ass. Until you stay up for nights in a row reading phone books, you’re not filibustering – by whatever party is not the president’s, executive actions are all that is left.

        1. Please fuck off and die Joe; make the world a better place.

    5. we share the same larger view of America, which includes a multi-racial, fair, economy and culture with strong safety net programs for the losers and also-rans of capitalism – no we are not in danger of becoming socialist, though socialist programs are popular.

      What makes you think Americans share a culture? Because a lot of people tweet about watching Squid Games? I don’t think you and I share any culture at all. For example, I think you are an idiot for pretending there is a safety net.

      Unemployment insurance is just that. Paid for by employers, who pay employees less to buy them insurance that their best employees never get to use. Social security is a worse investment than a whole life insurance policy. Welfare is a safety net in the same way as an awning in a cartoon. Disability is indeed for losers, and retards, and scammers.

      The one thing guaranteed by government is prosecution for non-compliance. And that is the very essence of socialism. Nobody ever gets to opt out regardless of how unfair it is.

      1. Chuck, I’m probably older than you and as I outlined in my earlier post, I lived through periods were most Americans did not even agree on equal rights for all races, some wanted us in Viet Nam, Iraq, and Afghanistan, and gay rights were absolutely not mentioned in polite company, let alone made national policy. You will have a hard time stating a specific and major policy difference between the parties.

        1. Fuck off and die, Joe. You’re full of shit.

        2. Nothing in your post is in any way a response to mine. It’s insulting the way you continually ignore every point made by others and just continue to parrot inane nonsense and post links to studies you haven’t read that don’t support what you claim they support.

          If you are just going to keep pretending that you understand history and science when you clearly don’t, you can fuck the hell off.

          The fact that you are not embarrassed about the crap you posted today is a good indicator that you are unable to learn from mistakes.

        3. Both parties wanted George Wallace’s votes.

    6. “I don’t like fascism, but only the right can be fascist so it’s TOTALLY OK to implement fascist policies and run roughshod over personal liberty in the name of progress, even when people object, because only my opinion matters and we all need to be safe.”

      That’s what I hear from you, Barbie.

    7. I feel your pain, loser.

  13. “Significant numbers of both Trump and Biden voters show a willingness to consider violating democratic tendencies and norms if needed to serve their priorities,”

    Funny, both Trump and Biden also showed a willingness to consider violating democratic tendencies and norms if needed to serve their priorities. The only difference is that Trump had to fight the entirety of the political Establishment including media and academia to get his priorities advanced and Biden gets his priorities advanced to the applause and fervid support of that same political Establishment.

    1. Perfect encapsulation of the the difference between Trump’s authoritarian attempts and Biden’s/any democrat’s near law diktat’s acceptance. Trump and the public learned one powerful lesson during his presidency, the US Government is an Elitist club and we’re not part of it.

    2. Give me an example of a Trump edict on a major civil rights issue,

      Like lockdowns, vaccine mandates, government takeover of health care, government take over of energy and redistribution of wealth

      Not so concerned about legalized drugs open borders and sex worker rights at the moment

      1. Exactly how many lockdowns do you think the President (any President) has ordered? Vaccine mandates by the government are definitely on Biden, but the government hasn’t taken over health care (unless private insurance companies have suddenly been nationalized and I missed it), it hasn’t taken over the energy sector (again, unless private energy companies have been nationalized without anyone noticing), and depending on what you mean by “redistribution of wealth”, that hasn’t changed significantly since Reagan.

        Overreach by Presidents is a bipartisan, multigenerational game. No one is innocent, at least since I was born.

        1. “…Overreach by Presidents is a bipartisan, multigenerational game. No one is innocent, at least since I was born…”

          Which is irrelevant, TDS-addled piece of shit. Fuck off and die.

  14. “Democracies in sectarian societies often create institutional arrangements to protect the minority, like minority or group rights,”

    How about a Bill of Rights, in a very conspicuous place say like the first several amendments to a constitution, that recognizes that every person has fundamental rights with which a government should not fuck around?

    1. That’s just crazy talk. A meme with a guy getting thrown out the window of an office building comes to mind.

      1. I may get thrown out but I ain’t gonna jump for them!

  15. Gee, we had a POTUS who was so horrible, he didn’t tell us to close our businesses or get stuck with a needle, but TDS-addled assholes like Tuccille did their best to make sure he wasn’t re-elected.
    Is Tuccille full of shit, or just too stupid to make that connection?

    1. It can be both.

    2. But MEAN TWEETS! I mean you can’t underestimate that

  16. “Rather than fighting each other for power, Americans would be better advised to ignore each other and go about their lives.”

    In other words, mind your own fucking business.

    I guess this is too hard, or perhaps directly opposed, for those who believe they have a moral imperative to improve society. They can be motivated by Jeebers, BLM, communism, MAGA, or just ordinary Karens.

    If we have to divide the country, my preference would be to first separate the tolerant from the intolerant, regardless of philosophy. We could then let the ideologues fight it out, maybe on Netflix.

    1. When I was a kid, the phrase, “Mind your own business” was commonly used. I rarely hear it anymore. That’s not good.

      1. “Just get the jab.” – Mike
        “Mind your own business.” – libertarians

    2. True. Both the GOP-nazis and DEM-commies are the opposite of laissez-faire. That hitlerites and stalinists hate each other shows they are both working the totalitarian side of the street. Libertarians work the laissez-faire side, with a lot hostile infiltrators, saboteurs and 5th-columnists running interference–just as those same looters interfere with each other.

  17. Ah the “both sides”. No it’s not. One side is all in on using the force of government to force masks, vaccines and income rerdistribution

    1. Unfortunately, the other major party, chose to throw their support behind a grifting asshole who tried to undermine American democracy. The other major party has also abandoned having their own ideas and trying to solve fiscal problems for bickering and complaining about the other party.

      The Republicans could have taken the high ground, but instead voluntarily descended to being complete gutter rats.

      1. “behind a grifting asshole who tried to undermine American democracy.”

        How so? By questioning the legitimacy of an election?

        As Democrats have done in every election they’ve lost since 1988?

        “The Republicans could have taken the high ground, but instead voluntarily descended to being complete gutter rats.”

        High road does not work at all, in case you missed it.

        1. “How so? By questioning the legitimacy of an election?”

          No, by ignoring the overwhelming evidence of a free and fair election and the complete absence of evidence of widespread and systemic fraud. He isn’t questioning anything. He’s lying about it. And his flock mindlessly swallows it without questioning.

          People conflate Trump and Republicans, probably because Trump excommunicates anyone who challenges his lies and he is the most powerful Republican in the nation. But there are many Republicans who are trying to remain true to the country and reject Trump.

          Trumpism is an abomination, but the Republican brand doesn’t deserve to be tarred with the Trump brush. There are a lot of honest, loyal, pro-democracy Republicans with integrity. And they’re easy to spot: if Trump is pissed at someone for taking a principled stand against his whims, that’s one.

          1. “…Trumpism is an abomination,..”
            TDS-addled pieces of shit are worse than abomination, TDS-addled piece of shit.

      2. “…Unfortunately, the other major party, chose to throw their support behind a grifting asshole who tried to undermine American democracy…”

        Lying pieces of TDS-addled lefty shit keep pushing this lie.
        Fuck off and die, asshole.

      3. Unfortunately you have TDS. Care to enumerate policies then vs now?

  18. Resentment of the other tribe doesn’t come without encouragement from above, it’s worth emphasizing. President Joe Biden says Republicans should “get out of the way” so they don’t “destroy” America.

    Except that Biden is correct- Republicans weren’t even allowing a vote on the debt ceiling. That is what we call obstruction and you can’t get mad at someone for pointing it out.

    That said- I think we’d have less people calling for an all powerful president if we had a Congress worth a shit. But I think we’re all basically resigned to the fact that we send these people there to twiddle their thumbs, get paid, and do nothing. It’s made even worse by the lack of representatives (we should have far more than 435 reps if not for the stupid 1929 House Appropriation Act) along with a Senate that can be shutdown with a simple “I filibuster.” There is no debate to be had, nothing pressing them to work, etc. So much of our government worked on ethics and norms which are in short supply.

    1. “…Except that Biden is correct- Republicans weren’t even allowing a vote on the debt ceiling. That is what we call obstruction and you can’t get mad at someone for pointing it out…”

      Fuck off and die, shitfordinner.

    2. “Except that Biden is correct- Republicans weren’t even allowing a vote on the debt ceiling.”

      Perhaps Biden should not have championed such behavior? Hard to say “Don’t do that” when you, personally, did that.

    3. It’s called a debt “ceiling”. Meaning it’s supposed to be a cap. Meaning if either side wants to raise it, there should be a very good reason, not just wanting to spend more on somebody’s wish list.

      1. It has nothing to do with present spending. It is only about previous debt incurred by past Presidents. Anyone who claims differently is lying to you.

        And don’t forget that the Trump budget began October 1st, 2020 and was active until it ended … 8 days ago. So it is all on Trump and his predecessors.

        1. “…So it is all on Trump and his predecessors…”

          TDS-addled piece of shit is reaching here, asshole.

  19. Tucille and the rest of reason really do not get it. They write the same piece over and over again without ever really addressing the obvious.

    1. ” without ever really addressing the obvious.”

      That they only appear here because there wasn’t a position available at Vox?

    2. Which is so obvious you didn’t say what it is. Can you please fill us in?

  20. “Rather than fighting for power, Americans should ignore each other and go about their lives.”

    How can I do that when people aren’t doing what I want?

    /Prog

    1. Rather than fighting for power, Americans should ignore each other and go about their lives.

      People did that in 1942 while the US government rounded up their Japanese neighbors. History has not looked kindly on them for it.

    2. Trying to run other people’s lives is a progg going about his life. (c.f. Joe Friday)

      And Toosilly endlessly talking around this simple bit of reality is his life.

  21. Some of us want an all powerful president to come in and destroy the tyrannical government that exists today while others what to enhance it.

    1. Not very many of us. Badnarik only got 0.32%.

      1. The 2004 LP platform contained idiotic planks to let foreigners wanted by police to enter uninspected, threw individual rights for women under the bus with a cowardly straddle. It did not call for repeal of the Nixon anti-libertarian law which exports fascism and therefore causes waves of refugees. While still best of 3, it ignored the Atlas Shrugged Amendment and the Equal Rights Amendment, either of which would geld most current lynch mobs eager to coerce at gunpoint. But mainly, libertarians hadn’t tapped into social media which powered Gary up to 4 million votes on a better platform. Restoring the 2016 platform and recovering our 1972-76 Roe v Wade plank could easily net us 8 million votes with a non-commie-anarchist candidate.

  22. I want a President that exercises his full authority. That means have full authority over the administrative state, where firings do not trigger impeachment proceedings.

    I want a Congress that exercises their full authority. That means not passing their powers to the administrative state or lobbyists to write the laws the pass.

  23. State by state secession is the way out. There’s very little binding the left and the right together anymore. There’s also no reason the red or blue states need to be contiguous, and no reason to send the Army to stomp out any state that votes to peacefully leave the union. After that they can bind back together in larger blocks if they want to. Many people might end up stuck in the wrong state, but at least they will have an option to move somewhere more to their liking.

    1. Yeah, there are so many reasons that’s a bad idea. Beginning with the fact that those of you on the fringes are not the majority. The center outnumbers the sum of both groups of wingnuts who keep bleating about secession.

      The country doesn’t belong to the extremists. Secessionists are the exception, they are the intransigent absolutists who refuse to accept anything they don’t want, and they can go fuck themselves. This country belongs to the middle, not the fringes.

      1. So if you’re a blue voter, would you miss Wyoming, Oklahoma, West Virginia, North Dakota, Idaho, Arkansas, Kentukcy, Alabama, South Dakota or Tennessee? Or would you be happier living in a country that didn’t include them in its political decisions?

        Do you think red voters would be happier living in a nation without California, Hawaii, New York, Vermont, Massachusetts and Maryland?

        Or does everyone want to rule everyone else so badly they don’t consider their own happiness and ability to implement good government (as they see it)? It’s a win-win solution.

        1. It is a recipe for extremism. Advocating for the elimination of the counterbalancing political force is saying that you want the most extreme elements to have control.

          But the overwhelming point is this: most people don’t want to live in a dark blue or dark red country. Most people want the lunatic fringes to be largely powerless. Most people don’t believe that one side is right and the other is wrong. Most people live in the center, plus or minus a little bit.

          As I said, the extremes can go fuck themselves. You don’t get to carve up our country because you can’t accept that the nation doesn’t share your issue profile.

          I have suffered through an administration that made me fear for my country. I have rejoiced when things I supported became law. I have despaired when things I opposed became law. That is the American experience. That is how it works. And that’s how it should work.

          The lunatics don’t get to run the asylum. The extremists don’t get to own this country. Again, they can go fuck themselves.

          1. And TDS-addled assholes can go fuck themselves with garden shovels.

        2. I think properly propagandized people will be happy eating old shoes and their own children as long as they are made to feel their team is in charge.

          It’s important to keep them starving, though. Well-fed people have time on their hands to get curious.

      2. “…The country doesn’t belong to the extremists…”

        Nor does it belong to TDSS-addled pieces of shit like you.

    2. Red states (60+% in 2020, would Dems actually miss them?):
      Wyoming, West Virginia, Oklahoma, North Dakota, Idaho, Arkansas, Kentucky, Alabama, South Dakota, Tennessee

      Leaning red (55-59%, the next to join Idaho):
      Louisiana, Nebraska, Utah, Mississippi, Indiana, Montana, Missouri, Kansas, South Carolina (I guess the rich Dems might miss Montana)

      Centrists (54-54%, happy to be stuck with you?):
      Red center: Ohio, Iowa, Alaska, Texas, Florida, North Carolina
      Blue center: New Mexico, Virginia, Maine, Minnesota, New Hampshire, Nevada, Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Arizona, Georgia (hard to believe Nevada, Arizona and Georgia are blue states, but that’s what the AP said on the day after the election.)

      Leaning blue (55-59%, the next to join California):
      Rhode Island, Washington, Connecticut, Delaware, Oregon, Illinois, New Jersey, Colorado

      Blue states (60+%, would Repubs actually miss them?):
      Vermont, Massachusetts, Maryland, Hawaii, California, New York

  24. Might it be easier to do by skin color? Or some other physical characteristic that people end to group by?

    1. Orange people to Mar-a-lago?

  25. Lovely Blog Award! Here it is
    thanks
    https://www.afaindia.com/
    Academy of Fashion And Art was incorporated in 2007, with a main objective of imparting world class training programme to meet the demands of students who are aspiring for NIFT, NID,PEARL, TDV, JSAA, UPES, UCEED, CEED, IIAD, UID and other Art and Design Entrance Exams across India and abroad. In pursuit of which, Academy of Fashion and Art has mooted with a team of outstanding and dedicated faculty members, State-of-the-art infrastructure and winning methodology that provides comprehensive , stimulation towards exploration and systematic guidance to students “who aspire for nothing but the best.”

    1. Should we be drawing conclusions about this?

  26. Anyone, who wants an All-Powerful President with this dementia-riddled, wrong-on-every-foreign-policy, totalitarian piece of shit as the current one, needs to have his/her head examined.

    1. But Biden is a good speaker…

  27. Too many people want an all-powerful president? Are you surprised? Almost everyone is sick of confusion, conflict, and inaction. They want somebody to be in charge. Some as in Weimar Germany in the early 1930s.

  28. Why are ********** pop up ads suddenly blocking my attempt to read this article? Does Reason really want to become one of THOSE kind of web sites?

    1. Gotta reload, but yeah, Reason has never had a professional web-site; it’s buggy, it jumps up and down, meaning what you thought you clicked on turns out to be ‘gutter leaf protection’.
      But one cause that Reason now gets $5.00/year instead of the formerly generous donation. Suffice to say, Welch should try to find a paying job; he sucks at what he does here.

  29. 75% Wants USA Constitutional Federalism????

    We’ll that 75% sure does talk up a lot of smack instead of action then; considering we keep getting MORE Nazism.

  30. Regarding our newest TDS-addled asshole Nelson, the MO is amazingly similar to our (also) newest steaming pile of lefty shit, Joe Friday. Smells.
    No direct claim made here, but a suspicion with some evidence:
    Seems the shitstain Tony hasn’t been posting in some time, and while he’s certainly a TDS-addled pile of lefty shit (true of both Nelson and Joe) he is capable of constructing sentences as evidenced by both the two new TDS-addled piles of lefty shit assuming he stays sober. Further, the primary ‘arguments’ presented by both are both very similar to shitstain’s constant whining and equally unsupported by facts:
    ‘Rights do not exist outside of those granted by a government’ (Joe – shitstain?)
    ‘Trump was a lying dictator wanna-be’ (Nelson – shitstain?)
    By coincidence (?), they both newly show up within a day or so, seem to have familiarity to the commentariat, claim to provide brand-new (actually lame and worn out, but carefully phrased) reasons to support their assholery and both pretend toward a detached ‘reasonable’ approach to their arguments and claims, asking only that the bullshit they offer are taken at face value; extremely similar in style between the two.
    So like shitstain, only rarely offer any real connection with reality. A good reason for the socks.
    Also like shitstain’s claims, we have heard the same shit for many years (Nelson) and many, many years (Joe). Not one cite from Nelson, or cites from other than steaming piles of lefty shit from Joe.
    Hey, TDS- addled steaming piece of lefty shit, post something which suggests you are not one and the same!
    Or even that you are capable of rational thought…
    I find few socks here, outside of the obvious WK/Mike, but this one is beginning to smell like 5-day-old fish.
    BTW, Go Giants!.

  31. If the duopoly, consisting of increasingly radicalized and irreconcilable ideologies, continues in the current path of trying to cram its mutually intolerable beliefs on the other side, who can doubt the ultimate destination of a CW2? It’s just a matter of when, not if.

    We have two potential off-ramps from this freeway to civil war: 1) a negotiated divorce, a la Slovakia and the Czech Republic, or 2) a commitment to federalism, under which California can be California and Texas can be Texas, and the citizens can vote with their feet as well as their ballots.

    The Founders were brilliant in giving us federalism, enshrining it as they did in our governance structure. It’s high time we renewed our commitment to it, before it is too late.

    1. ^Deserves a repeat
      “The Founders were brilliant in giving us federalism, enshrining it as they did in our governance structure. It’s high time we renewed our commitment to it (The U.S. Constitution – the very definition of what the USA IS), before it is too late.”

  32. Way Too Many People Want an Dictator President

    Our founding fathers must be rolling in their graves. Wanting a LIMITED Federal government their first attempt was the Articles of Confederation. To many people forget that fact. The states immediately assumed to much unwarranted power, causing our founding fathers to reconsider and give us our Constitution we have today. We are now at the point of Federal Dictatorship, Democrats leading the charge. Wanting to re-write the constitution, pack courts, and Federalize elections. They are also using the Justice Dept, and FBI for silencing any dissent.
    Always ask yourself one question is you support one party over the other. Would I support this legislation, or what is happening if the other party was in power? If the answer is no, it is bad legislation or actions. Example for all you Democrat trolls? Could you honestly support Federalizing elections if the Republicans held the Presidency, both Houses of Congress, and had a Majority of the Supreme court? If you are honest you know the answer would be no. Then again, I have never met an honest troll!

    1. They want the powers listed because they are in power and they want to make sure they always are in power (control of elections).

      This is not a both sides argument. Its one side. For the most part conservatives just want to be left alone to live their lives. Liberals want to use the force of government to impose their will on others

      1. That’s just a prima facie lie. It isn’t just one party doing wrong and the other doing right. If we ever get out of this two-party hell we’ve made for ourselves, the President of that third party would continue the same behavior as the Presidents before them. Because Presidents trying to gather more power to the Executive is about having the ability to wield unitary power to reshape the country without all those pesky checks and balances.

        And every President is arrogant enough to believe (or at least fool themselves) that they are the ones who would be using that power for good. Unlike the other party’s guy, who was trying to destroy the country.

        Unitary power is the threat. Strong checks and balances are the remedy. The Presidency needs to be reigned in.

        1. +10000000. It is sick how even the very basis of the 3-branches is starting to fall into despair. I guess since “democracy” has trumped the Constitution on Enumerated Powers; everyone just figures the structure can be trumped too. Good advice above by IndependantTexan.

        2. “That’s just a prima facie lie….”

          Nelson.
          Is.
          Just.
          Full.
          Of.
          Shit.

      2. Wrong. BOTH parties want to Impose their will on others. It was TRUMP who said “A presidents power is total.” And conservative governors in Texas and Florida who signed laws forcing websites to dictate what content they can or cannot host in CLEAR violation of the first ammendment.

        1. Guy21.
          Is.
          Full.
          Of.
          Shit.

        2. Bingo…. Tik-Tok is foreign commerce.
          “To regulate commerce with foreign nations”

          He should’ve put it to congress. Is Russian radio part of a first amendment *entitlement* too? That’s pretty pathetic.

          And the reason?
          TikTok “automatically captures vast swaths of information from its users,” such as location data and browsing and search histories, which “threatens to allow the Chinese Communist Party access to Americans’ personal and proprietary information — potentially allowing China to track the locations of Federal employees and contractors, build dossiers of personal information for blackmail, and conduct corporate espionage.”

          Seems it turns out it wasn’t about content at all; but about violations of privacy. Yet another reason the U.S. Constitution granted that power. There’s is no such thing as National Security when the defense department is available to anyone online.

          1. Tin foil hats, aisle #6, shiny side out.

    2. I think Republicans must be kept from power, and that it may not matter because they’re going to try to seize power in 2024 using all the lessons they learned when they tried to seize power in 2020.

      Donald Trump is a globally dangerous moron, and he’s the head of an American fascist movement hellbent on destroying the constitution.

      None of those sentences are anything but facts. So why are you complaining about Democrats again?

      1. Shitstain.
        Is.
        Full.
        Of.
        Shit.

      2. “destroying the constitution” LMAO!!!
        UR such a partisan hack; it’s funny….

        Tony’s point for the day –
        1) Don’t let our Constitutional Republic get destroyed by Republicans…
        2) Support Democratic National Socialism instead because Democratic Nazi’s honor to the U.S. Constitution is exactly ZERO.

        1. So you know all those Nazis marching in the streets of late? Do you think they are Biden voters?

          1. Yes Tony; REAL Nazi’s vote for Biden because Biden pushes National Socialism (The full-name of the acronym Nazi). Just as Bernie and Obama did. Heck; every single National Socialist is a member of the Democratic party.

            https://mises.org/library/national-socialism

          2. Biden voters are indistinguishable from ordinary communists. They act like social democrat butterflies until elected, then eat all substance. Trumpista republicans are about the same as Hitler National Socialists (search “Republican National Socialism”). The biggest difference is the latter bully girls in the name of Jesus. All four parties are altruistic and collectivist, while the fascisti’s only differential is Gott Mitt Uns mystical fanaticism. The LP is not altruistic, non-collectivist and disinclined to have people shot just because James Battersby says to.

          3. “So you know all those Nazis marching in the streets of late?”

            No, shitstain, we know to recognize your strawmen and that you are full of shit.

      3. Both Tony’s points apply with equal correctness to both halves of the looter Kleptocracy, and both figureheads. This is why we have a Libertarian party. We want voters to listen to what the communists and fascists say about each other… then vote LP.

        1. 99% of your LP candidates run in the Republican Party in case you didn’t notice.

          1. That’s a good point, for once. Why do people think that Bernie, self-described Democratic Socialist that he is, ran for the Democratic Party nomination? Any libertarian that really wants to be elected ends up running as a Republican. Minor parties will never be competitive in the U.S. with the way we do primaries, at least. We might even need some kind of ranked choice voting in addition to reforming how primaries work in order for anything but the donkey and the elephant to ever be viable choices.

            Well, the other possibility is that one of those parties completely implodes and a new party and coalition rises from the ashes.

  33. Well I hope Zuckerberg found out who was the hottest lady at Harvard.

  34. The problem is that presidents no longer work like Ronald Reagan did. He would summon Democrats and and renegade Republicans for drinks or dinner and negotiate, whether offering support on a bill or supporting a project.

    But, so many members of Congress are so far from the middle, that they can’t think about negotiating.

    On the $3.5 trillion spending bill, I would compromise at $1.75 trillion and let both parties claim victory. But conservatives want to spend $0, and liberals want all $3.5 trillion.

    1. Paraphrase, “so many members of Congress are so far from the middle” …. of Nazism…

      The Constitution Authority for ANY of the spending bill is granted WHERE?? Ya; Congress has been ‘compromising’ a Nazi take-over of the USA for a long time and it’s getting bad enough to start a civil war in order to save the USA from Nazism.

  35. That’s some pretty kush Tuccille as usual. The LP alone ought to have been leveraging crappy laws into the dustbin with spoiler votes for 50 years. But Nixon’s simultaneous creation of IRS power to rob voters to subsidize looter politicians has been a powerful force for evil—a force magnified in Banana Republics which import it to strangle libertarian parties in the crib. Also, before subsidies for the initiation of force, politics as she was whittled coercive states down to size via the 10th Amendment. But that Amendment—once a curb on power—is now becoming the harlot of Ku-Klux-Hitlerism in places like Texas.

  36. “Democracies in sectarian societies often create institutional arrangements to protect the minority, like minority or group rights, power-sharing agreements, devolution or home rule,” Nate Cohn noted in The New York Times in a May piece on America’s rising political tensions.

    One part of the culture wars is the dispute over whether people get to discriminate against various minority groups. One counter to arguments that bakers that run a public business have to bake wedding cakes for same sex couples in spite of the baker’s religious objections is that the couple could go to a different baker. But what if they couldn’t? What if every baker within 50 miles also objected to same sex marriage and would refuse? This is why we have anti-discrimination laws in the first place.

    The problem with this libertarian “live and let live” and “local control” ethos is that history shows us that many local governments will violate the civil rights of minority groups if not checked from higher up the chain.

    It was always a mistake not to apply the Bill of Rights to state and local governments. That was a blunder on the part of the Founders. That some on the right still don’t like that they are applied to the states now, through the 14th Amendment, tells you what would happen in a system like what Tuccille seems to want.

  37. Human psychology is much of the problem. A single, charismatic leader is always going to have an easier time swaying voters than a legislative body made up of many people. Debate and compromise in a legislative setting is never sexy or satisfying to people that just want what they want now.

    But the biggest flaw in the checks and balances and separation of powers under our Constitution was that it didn’t fully anticipate the President being the de facto head of a political party. The Constitutional Convention considered different methods of selecting the President, and ended up rejecting him being chosen by Congress, fearing that this would lead to a weak President that was beholden to Congress. The opposite problem resulted, however.

    A Congress controlled by the same party as the President is inevitably going to be subordinate to that single person. Congressional leaders can never match the ability of a President to reach and sway the people. Only a Congress controlled by the opposing party has the incentive to guard its own powers from encroachment by the executive. But we won’t always have that situation, and it isn’t always desirable anyway.

    What drives polarization and balkanization of our politics is how information has become so divided. We simply don’t have a shared reality anymore. When people don’t operate from the same basic set of facts, they can’t ever come to similar conclusions or compromise with a solution that all sides can live with.

    I’ve brought it up before, but just think about who counts as a popular media source of “news” now versus 40 years ago. Tucker Carlson (he isn’t even news) is considered popular with average ratings at around 4 million nightly viewers. That is a whole order of magnitude less than the number of people that would watch Walter Cronkite every night, when the U.S. population was about 100 million fewer than it is now.

    We can’t fix our politics until we have a shared sense of what is true and what isn’t.

    1. “…I’ve brought it up before, but just think about who counts as a popular media source of “news” now versus 40 years ago. Tucker Carlson (he isn’t even news) is considered popular with average ratings at around 4 million nightly viewers. That is a whole order of magnitude less than the number of people that would watch Walter Cronkite every night, when the U.S. population was about 100 million fewer than it is now…”

      Only skimmed the rest of your comment, but if you expect to be taken seriously, retract that paragraph and admit you’re bullshitting.

      1. Ooops:
        Or that you’re not smart enough to understand statistics.
        One or the other.

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