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Taylor Swift Should Apologize for Being Apolitical: Fashion Mag

The world is grim enough without insisting every pop star become a revolutionary.

Pop star Taylor Swift's new album, Reputation, is on its way to setting sales records. So it's a good time to slag the performer for being insufficiently politically correct, right? Or, more precisely, for being insufficiently political. The editors at Marie Claire, "a fashion publication with character, substance, and depth for a woman with a point of view and a sense of humor," think so:

The article does acknowledge that last November, a sweater-clad Swift did post an Instagram pic from a line at a polling place with the caption, "Today is the day, get out and VOTE," but come on, right?

Some people interpreted her sweater as confirmation that she was casting a vote for Hillary Clinton (see this post by Lena Dunham for explanation of the theory), but that's a far cry from stating her political stance outright. Taylor is not required to be open about her politics, of course, but it's also fair to question her decision to remain silent in what was a particularly contentious and consequential presidential battle.

Yeah, no.

As former Reason scribe Charles Paul Freund (read his masterpiece "In Praise of Vulgarity: How Commercial Culture Liberates Islam—and the West") was fond of saying, nothing bothered Soviet cultural commissars more than American pop tunes about puppy love and driving aimlessly around in cars. More than Elvis and Little Richard, who at least freaked out the older generation, Paul Anka and Neil Sedaka were perceived as bigger threats to the USSR precisely because they represented a complete absence of revolutionary potential. In a society in which everything was about politics and ideology, the most revolutionary act was to simply ignore politics and ideology, if only for a few minutes.

Terry Colon, Suck.comTerry Colon, Suck.comAnd so it is in the contemporary United States, where, to paraphrase George W. Bush's much-derided statement after the 9/11 attacks, you're either with us or against us (Bush himself was paraphrasing one of Jesus' most-dualistic statements in the New Testament). For the entirety of the 21st century, it seems, more and more parts of our lives are being infected by partisanship of the dumbest and rankest form. Marie Claire is hardly the only or even the worst outlet when it comes to insisting that Taylor Swift join the barricades or STFU, but it's always worth pointing out that very few people want to live in a world where every goddamned thing is drafted for political purposes. The Kiss Army is right to remain neutral.

Indeed, one of the main reasons I fell in with libertarians is precisely because their vision of the world is predicated upon squeezing areas in which politics operates to its minimum so we can get on with living our lives. Even if we live to be 200 years old (and we will, someday!), life will always be too short to fight over which celebrity should vote for which candidate. If a public figure wants to use her fame to advance this or that cause, issue, or candidate, more power to them. But as basketball legend and recidivist public nuisance Charles Barkley put it way, way back in 1993, "I am not a role model." In many, perhaps most, ways the personal is the political, but not in the grim partisan way that the Marie Claires and the Breitbarts of the world seem to insist.

There is plenty to criticize Taylor Swift about—Marie Claire notes in passing she tried to legally quash the speech of neo-Nazis who were claiming her as one of their own, her decision to screw her fans by ditching Spotify, and her ditching of Tim Hiddleston come to mind—but not being sufficiently partisan? Please. That way madness, or at least bitterness, or Phil Ochs, lies.

In 2014, Remy and Reason TV decided to shake it off:

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  • Unlabelable MJGreen||

    Some people interpreted her sweater as confirmation that she was casting a vote for Hillary Clinton (see this post by Lena Dunham for explanation of the theory)

    I'll get right on that.

  • Hugh Akston||

    I find your lack of faith in Lena Dunham's fashion scyring powers disturbing.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    Thank you.

  • CE||

    It's a pretty fair bet if she didn't endorse Clinton she was voting for someone else.

  • NoVaNick||

    Gary Johnson, of course!

  • vek||

    That's my thinking. You have no need to hide your opinions unless they're not popular... If they are you usually trumpet them.

  • RabbitHead||

    Unless of course you value discretion for its own sake, or were raised not to discuss politics or religion in public.

  • Deven||

    There is a reason that Mark Wahlberg and Taylor Swift are crushing it. They aren't the most talented in their professions, but they have the best understanding of their professions. They are there to entertain, to take your mind off the world around you for a while, and people pay them well for that. If only ESPN understood.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    They aren't the most talented in their professions

    What.

    The.

    Fuck.

  • Unlabelable MJGreen||

    There's a reason, and that's the one.

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    He seems surprisingly awful.

  • UnrepentantCurmudgeon||

    Wahlberg is at best a journeyman who nonetheless reliably produces the product the studio wants. And he sells a boatload of tickets, and so is marketable.

    Plus he's not all bad. "The Fighter" was good.

  • SIV||

    Apolitical?

    Aryan Barbie?

  • vek||

    Yes, she is a bit of an Aryan Barbie. I'd fuck the shit out of Taylor Swift.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    We've entered the stage in our political development where progressivism is officially correct thinking. Anyone refusing to signal this overtly is, what, heretic? Whatever you want to call it, if you try to maintain palatability to anyone who doesn't see Trump for the monster he is, you are an enabler and a normalizer and you must be shunned with the rest of them.

    My beloved Pittsburgh Penguins were so branded for visiting the White House as a consequence of winning the Stanley Cup this past summer. Although they maintained that they were not making with the trip a political statement one way or the other, the team was much derided (often from the same crowd who insisted that anthem-protesters' proclamations that they weren't protesting the troops or the flag be taken at face value).

  • CE||

    It's like not standing up to Hitler when you had the chance. Only worse.

  • C. S. P. Schofield||

    God, I hope you're being sarcastic. So many little twits seem to actually believe this that it's kinda hard to tell.

  • NoVaNick||

    I have been "unfriended" by at least two of my smurf friends on FB since the election because I failed to like their Trump-bashing resistard posts and generally abstain from posting anything political, although I occasionally may like someone else's post, as I did for those endorsing Gay Jay.

    Who knew Taylor Swift and I had so much in common?

  • UnrepentantCurmudgeon||

    The political atmosphere on FB has largely driven me away from it.

  • Finrod||

    Sounds like you're better off not being their friends.

  • ||

    How is that a political statement? IT'S BEEN STANDARD FOR CHAMPIONSHIP TEAMS TO VISIT THE WHITE HOUSE FOR YEARS.

    What in the fuck is wrong with people?

  • C. S. P. Schofield||

    They lost, and they're drumming their heels on the floor and generally behaving like five year olds. Makes you wonder how they'd have behaved if they'd WON.

  • Rhywun||

    They just want to her to come out as a Republican so they can trash her with whatever mud the media's been holding back for such an occasion.

  • Colossal Douchebag||

    "If you have any poo, fling it now."

  • Rhywun||

    screw her fans by ditching Spotify

    OMG the horror.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    I can't wait for Swizzle to rule us all.

  • DJF||

    She is also White and its not OK to be White

  • Rhywun||

    I read somewhere her music isn't black enough.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    But if it was, that would be "cultural appropriation".

  • Number 2||

    Don't laugh. She's already been so accused.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    I wouldn't know since I don't follow her career, but it wouldn't surprise me in the least.

  • CE||

    She seems to be copying Beynoce on her latest album.

  • Hugh Akston||

    her decision to screw her fans by ditching Spotify

    "Listen fans, I'm only going to make my music available through iTunes, Amazon, Pandora, Iheartradio, a number of other streaming platforms, my website, a variety of physical media, and for free on YouTube. IOW, fuck you."

  • CE||

    Yeah, what's Spotify?

  • John||

    Taylor Swift is skinny, rich and despite a little too much plastic surgery pretty hot. She is basically everything the bitter hags at Marie Claire wish they were but are not. This is nothing but the homely girls in National Hornor Society engaging in catty bitching about the rich prom queen.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    I think all of that is true, and on top of that they're socialists. Socialists believe that all art should advance "progressive" causes. "Ars gratia artis" is definitely not their motto.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    She's had work done?

  • Migrant Log Chipper||

    I thought that rag went tits up? Or maybe it's another one.

  • Juice||

    I know she's supposed to be hot, but to me her face is kinda weird. Something about her cheekbones and eyes. Can't quite place it.

  • Citizen X - #6||

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    She's too skinny, too much makeup. She dresses well is the reason she's attractive to people. He actual physical form is eh.

  • Eek Barba Durkle||

    "Taylor Swift is skinny, rich and despite a little too much plastic surgery pretty hot."

    'Thinking Taylor Swift is hot' should be the number one indicator of pedophilia in the DSM. She looks like a nerdy 13-year-old boy.

  • MJBinAL||

    I have to agree with you here. If she had some hips, an ass, and maybe some breasts, she might be "hot". As it is, "nerdy 13-year-old boy" seems about right.

    On the other hand, she is an excellent business person. She has figured out that expressing ANY political opinion is going to piss off some portion of her fans. So she keeps those opinions to herself and does as she pleases privately..

    You will note that Kathy Griffin is whining that she isn't being booked for gigs in the USA right now and they are "blackballing" her. Apparently, when acting over the top, filthy, crude, and obscene, it never occurred to her that some of the folks she was pissing off where former fans. Did she really think she could call her fans names, insult them in some of the crudest fashions possible, and they were going to pay to come see her?

  • John||

    There is plenty to criticize Taylor Swift about—Marie Claire notes in passing she tried to legally quash the speech of neo-Nazis who were claiming her as one of their own

    How is that wrong? Swift isn't a Nazi and the Nazis have no right to slander her by claiming she is. Telling someone to stop slandering you is not quashing their speech.

    her decision to screw her fans by ditching Spotify

    It is her music and her business selling it. Deciding to sell it on one platform or another is not screwing anyone.

    Serious question, what the hell is wrong with Gillespie? Did someone drop him on his head? I don't understand where he comes up with this shit.

  • jcw||

    You really sat down and seriously analyzed a list of things to "criticize Taylor Swift about" that includes her breaking up with a celebrity? I don't understand how anyone can read that list and think that it actually means anything.

    Fucking hell man.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    He's an attorney for DHS. You want him to spend his time actually doing his job?

  • John||

    So I should not take what Nick says seriously? You probably have a good point there.

  • dantheserene||

    J-
    Check out Popehat's entry on
    Swift's lawyers trying to use copyright law to prevent the recipient from publishing their letter.

  • Pro Libertate||

    You know, that's a great idea--don't reveal your politics. That will get you more attention these days.

  • Libertarian||

    Criticism on being light weight and shallow. From a FASHION MAGAZINE. I weep for our society.

  • CE||

    As Michael Jordan used to say, "Republicans buy sneakers too."

  • Finrod||

    That's one thing that I've always appreciated about "Weird Al" Yankovic: he's studiously avoided anything political.

  • Hugh Akston||

    "Republicans buy sneakers too"

  • Just Say'n||

    Noted white supremacist, Michael Jordan.

    #RESIST

  • Crusty Juggler||

    It's still problemetic 20 something years later.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    He did grow that little Hitler mustache...

  • sarcasmic||

    Taylor does a lot of screwing, but not of her fans. She requires several failed relationships per album, because that is how she writes her songs.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    She broke that mug Hiddleston's heart.

  • sarcasmic||

    If she ever finds a guy to settle down with, her career will be over. And she knows it.

  • John||

    Look what happened to Billy Joel. The moment he hooked up with Christy Brinkley he was finished. None of his records ever sold as well as they had up to that point again. Happiness and contentment is generally not very conducive to good art.

  • sarcasmic||

    I dunno. There are a few bands with happily married members that have done well. Rush comes immediately to mind.

  • sarcasmic||

    Perhaps I am wrong, but my understanding is that while they were at their peak they were family men, not groupie chasers.

  • MJBinAL||

    This is actually a good point. Every decent piece of music I ever wrote was written when I was emotionally in the ditch. Usually after being dumped by a woman.

    It is a coping mechanism, using the music to vent and deal with emotional distress. It is not a mystery why so many talented musicians self medicate with drugs. The internal distress that drives the art is still painful.

  • John||

    She pretty much does what every male rock star songwriter over the last 60 years has done. Yet, somehow it is wrong when she does it. Swift is one of the few women in public life who is a legitimate victim of a sexist double standard.

  • sarcasmic||

    It seems to me that nobody gives a shit except for a few prudes that don't get any attention.

  • John||

    It is a sexist double standard and it is women who are applying it to her for the most part. Women are just nasty to each other.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    LOL, I think it was Al Bundy who said "Why should I try to understand women? Women understand women, and they hate each other."

  • Crusty Juggler||

    Ron Swanson said that!

    That is why no one comes to this place anymore.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    Could be. My "source" was a .gif on the internet.

    Which means, I guess, I could qualify as a journalist.

  • Just Say'n||

    "Which means, I guess, I could qualify as a journalist."

    Only if you dox the guy who made the gif. Do you even news, bro?

  • lap83||

    Maybe women in the media and possibly teenage girls and Crusty. The average woman doesn't care.

  • John||

    Whatever you think about Crusty, he cares. That is generally not a good thing. But he cares.

  • damikesc||

    John|11.15.17 @ 11:25AM|#


    She pretty much does what every male rock star songwriter over the last 60 years has done. Yet, somehow it is wrong when she does it. Swift is one of the few women in public life who is a legitimate victim of a sexist double standard.

    She's a prettier Adam Levine.

  • Finrod||

    I disagree-- most of her boyfriends have been at least a bit famous (i.e. has a wikipedia entry); I'd challenge you to find a male rock star that had as many girlfriends that had wikipedia entries as Taylor Swift has boyfriends,

  • CE||

    Does she need another muse? Asking for a friend.

  • sarcasmic||

    Being a savvy business woman who likes to keep her own money, I would imagine her politics do not lean to the left.
    And in this day and age, it is better to be thought of as a non-leftist than to open one's mouth and remove all doubt. (paraphrasing Mark Twain)

  • CE||

    I think you mean Lincoln.

  • Half-Virtue, Half-Vice||

    Taylor Swift, Aryan Goddess?

  • Libertarian||

    I wish I was better at just ignoring politics. I have acquaintances and friends who almost never bring it up, and I admire that trait. They have, you know, interests and hobbies.

    Taylor Swift, no matter what you think of her, is at the top of her game and has more important (and remunerative) things to do. Not to mention enjoyable. Life is short

  • John||

    Other than kicking people around on here and a few other places on the internet, I never talk about politics. It is just such a tiresome and boring subject for the most part. Talking politics is the quickest way to ruin any conversation.

  • sarcasmic||

    I've lost too many friends from talking politics. Almost as many as I have lost from saying stupid shit while drunk. This forum is the only place where I talk about the subject.

  • Tony||

    Isn't it cute how you're blaming politics and not your own horrible self.

  • John||

    Normally you are just appallingly stupid. But, you are a legitimately awful human being Tony. Every once in a while I almost forget just how hideous you actually are and think you are just stupid, silly and ignorant. Then you post something like this and remind me that you make up for being stupid but being an extremely hateful and awful person. If you were not so horrible, I would feel sorry for you.

  • Tony||

    Tell me more about how transgender people are depraved but pedophiles are A-OK.

  • John||

    Yes Tony, you are too stupid and hateful to have a rational conversation about pretty much anything and just resort to name calling. You never change.

    But, you are a mean and stupid person yet still manage to be unworthy of pity.

  • Tony||

    I'm simply repeating two claims you have made in the past day.

  • John||

    No you are not. You are restating what the voices in your head are telling you. You are too stupid and dishonest to understand what I am saying much less restate it.

    No one ever argues with you on here Tony. It is impossible. You are too stupid. Everyone just trolls you and laughs at you.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    Goddamn, that is a world record achievement in un-self-awareness. Kudos, Tony.

  • Tony||

    My friends and I talk politics all the time, but nobody gets dropped because none of us believe awful shit spoonfed to us by fat Sean Hannity. And my god is he fat lately.

  • sarcasmic||

    You get along because you are all emotional leftists without a shred of logic or reason. Kind of a no brainer.

  • Incomprehensible Bitching||

    I believe you, Tony. You really do have awesome friends.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    Tony was whining on here a couple weeks ago because he was supposed to have an intimate lunch with one of his friends but then she invited a bunch of other people, so at least one person he knows has some sense and discernment.

  • sarcasmic||

    I use logic to trounce someone's emotions, and they run away in tears. So yeah, I guess that does make me a horrible person.

  • Tony||

    Well that is rude.

  • sarcasmic||

    I've never really been one to care about whether or not I am rude. Probably because when others are rude it doesn't phase me in the slightest. I just don't give a shit.

  • Tony||

    There's never an excuse for rudeness. Now will everyone apologize for jumping on me for calling sarc horrible? He just admitted it!

  • sarcasmic||

    Yep. Nothing is more horrible than unfiltered honesty.

  • Incomprehensible Bitching||

    Why can't these fucking racist Nazi homophobe autistic retards understand how rude there being ?

  • Zeb||

    "Saying stupid shit while drunk" isn't blaming himself?

  • MJBinAL||

    Oh LOOK! Tony just crawled out from under his rock!

  • Zeb||

    I wish I was better at just ignoring politics.

    Right on. I often really wish I just didn't give a fuck. I've gotten to the point of mostly not giving a fuck about politics and elections, but the fact that everyone has to be so damn wrong about everything all the time still pisses me off.

  • Qsl||

    I wish I was better at just ignoring politics.

    I think this is more of a function of how much your life comes in conflict with the status quo, and how much you color outside the lines.

    Not to mention seeing the dysfunction of the current system and thinking there has to be a better way.

    I noted most tech companies started mostly apolitical, but changed their tune once they started brushing up against the law.

    Even The Beatles wrote Taxman.

  • Rhywun||

    A musical artist I like a great deal went on some brain-dead crying jag after the election on FB* and replied to even the mildest suggestions to keep his politics to himself with rhees and just overall unappealing behavior.

    *The only reason I was there was find the f'in release date of their next album

    I bought the album when it finally came out last month but... man I was turned off by that crap. If I was on the fence about buying it, I would definitely take that into consideration. Life is full enough of great music that I see no purpose in shooting yourself in the foot like that.

  • ChipToBeSquare||

    I find Taylor to be incredibly libertarian

    Whenever anyone finds out I'm not a leftist and asks what we should do to eliminate income inequality or whatever, I usually say "I would very much like to be excluded from this narrative"

  • Tony||

    "I got mine, fuck you" is shorter.

  • John||

    Says the person who has never done anything for anyone except demand other people spend their money to do things.

  • sarcasmic||

    Leftists rarely put their own money where their mouth is. It isn't fair for them to contribute while others do not. It's only fair when government forces everyone to join in.

  • Tony||

    That you still can't distinguish between the categories of charity and public good means you're not interested in understanding even basic things about what you believe.

  • sarcasmic||

    Oh I can distinguish just fine. The difference is that the number of things that fall into my definition of public good is finite, while for you it is infinite.

  • Tony||

    I know, government is bad because it is violent, which is why it must confine itself to activities that involve shooting and caging people. Libertarianism!

  • sarcasmic||

    Um, no. Government is force. Period. And everything it does is predicated on the use of force.
    That doesn't mean that government is bad or that force is bad. It is not a value statement.
    So the question becomes whether or not something that you want to be done by government is so important that is justifies force, coercion, violence, and ultimately death for anyone who doesn't want to go along.
    In my mind the things that justify force are limited. For you they are infinite. Anything you want justifies killing anyone who disagrees.
    Yet somehow I'm the terrible person.

  • Tony||

    The programs I want that you find so objectionable don't involve killing anyone.

    The only programs you tolerate actually do involve killing people.

  • sarcasmic||

    The programs I want that you find so objectionable don't involve killing anyone.

    Really? Every program is based upon the collection of taxes. What happens when someone doesn't pay their taxes? Well, they are ordered to go to court. What happens if they refuse? Armed men are sent to take them to court. What happens if they fight back against this initiation of force? They will be beaten or killed.

    Everything that government does is predicated on this. No exceptions.

  • Tony||

    Blah blah with the taxes = killing people.

    I thought you just said that violence had no value judgment attached to it.

  • sarcasmic||

    I thought you just said that violence had no value judgment attached to it.

    Nope. I said that government is force, and everything it does is predicated on a real threat of violence. That is a fact, not a value judgement.
    The value judgments are in deciding what warrants violence.

  • Tony||

    And real violence is OK while metaphorical violence is bad.

  • Eidde||

    Taken to court? Maybe if the tax collectors are in a *good* mood.

  • DarrenM||

    I think the question is what would happen to anyone who refused to go along with one of those programs you want, assuming it had been passed into law by the government and was enforced.

  • MJBinAL||

    Yep, no killing for Tony's programs. When they come to take your money to pay for them, just the awareness they HAVE guns means they don't have to use them.

    So force is bad, but OVERWHELMING force, is just like no force at all!

    Welcome to the land of Tony.

  • Incomprehensible Bitching||

    Why should we care about confiscatory tax rates, when somewhere, out there, there's a poor innocent she-man, worried about getting in trouble for using a public urinal? Democrats!

  • Zeb||

    Not your best work. C+.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    Tony is presumably known throughout Oklahoma for his charitable endeavors. Or his comment is just more dumb, reflexive bitchiness, one.

  • Incomprehensible Bitching||

    I don't really care about people, but I still need to find some way, some how, to morally cudgel people. What's a girl to do?

  • ChipToBeSquare||

    You got me. I'm a monocle-twirling billionaire. I don't choose to do any private charity at all, or put in time to help family members who struggle because the government fails them all the time

    I'm sorry the mean Republicans made fun of you for being gay in high school. Hopefully you get help and get over this. It's been years man, you can't hold on forever

    Have a good day

  • Tony||

    Nobody stereotypes you as as the Monopoly Man. That is your own narcissistic self-stereotype. Normal people think of libertarians as basement dwellers who can't comprehend that not paying rent to Mom is actually something of a handout.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    Tony thinks he has insight into what "normal people" think. Hilarious!

  • John||

    Is there ever a hard core leftist who isn't some kind of hateful, broken, emotional cripple? These people always seem to be even worse than you think they are.

  • Tony||

    Take it from John, famous around the Internet for being happy-go-lucky.

  • John||

    Tony you are just a nasty horrible person. Chiptobesquare offers good advice that you should seek some therapy. Just get some help.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    Tony's a terrible human being, but he's not a "hardcore leftist." I really don't think his politics extend beyond "i should be allowed to do what i want and people i don't like should get fucked over." He's incredibly shallow and nowhere near as smart as he thinks he is. He thinks he's Truman Capote but he's not even Jiminy Glick.

  • Tony||

    I suppose the extremely high rates of psychopathy and autism spectrum disorders among libertarians make you better at that?

  • sarcasmic||

    I suppose the extremely high rates of psychopathy and autism spectrum disorders among libertarians make you better at that?

    I prefer "cold and rational."

  • Tony||

    You prefer to think of yourself as cold and rational as you do nothing but spew pathologically paranoid horsepucky.

  • sarcasmic||

    Your debate lessons from Piers Morgan must be going well.

  • ChipToBeSquare||

    Speaking of, have you been screened? It's my understanding that many autistic people often troll online as their only form of social interaction, because it's easier for them to anger people online than it is to "fit in"

    I think the stigma is starting to go away. More and more people with it are able to live fulfilling lives

  • Tony||

    I took the online test and scored borderline, which was no surprise. I do have an active social life and a lot of friends, but I've never quite understood why.

  • Incomprehensible Bitching||

    We believe you Tony. We know you're very popular.

  • MyCroftxXx||

    "plenty of tards have kick ass lives. my ex wife's one.... she's a pilot now"

  • ChipToBeSquare||

    Progressivism offers a sense of community and importance for marginalized groups. It is sometimes genuinely admirable

    That also means you would probably be happier posting at Mother Jones than here at Reason. Sometimes it's just easier to be in an echo chamber. No need to raise your blood pressure over politics if it's not how you make your living

  • RabbitHead||

    But at Mother Jones he is just another member of the chorus. Here he is the star of the show. Look at all the attention he gets.

    The noble hero, tilting at windmills.

  • Finrod||

    Well, he thinks he's the star, anyways, when in fact he's just the court jester. Kind of like Ann Coulter.

  • MJBinAL||

    References Please!

  • ChipToBeSquare||

    I think you could benefit quite a bit from therapy. Give it a shot. Surely it can help you with your rage more than picking fights on libertarian websites

  • Tony||

    You're probably right. Though there would be less fighting if more of you could simply admit that just because a person is a Republican that doesn't mean it's OK for him to touch 14 year old girls in the vagina.

  • Incomprehensible Bitching||

    It's always someone else.

  • MJBinAL||

    I think our fighting would go down dramatically if Tony was put in a really nice private room.

    I'm thinking of the psycho floor at the hospital. It is really the best place for Tony. As a confirmed Socialist, he will appreciate that they provide all the clothing he needs, food, medications, and when he needs it, a lovely jacket to keep him from hurting himself.

  • Zeb||

    I just ask back: "why is income inequality a problem?". There's no problem with inequality per se. There is some problem of poverty, but it has almost nothing to do with how rich some other people are.

  • Tony||

    Only if you believe that money has nothing to do with power. How can you have a free society in which everyone has a meaningful democratic voice if 1% owns half of everything?

  • sarcasmic||

    What the... I simply cannot make any sense from that statement.

  • Tony||

    Because you don't think anything through, preferring to believe, as is amply evidenced in your own statements, that the world can be completely organized via a couple slogans.

    A billionaire has more power than you. He can buy congressmen and you can't. Why is this difficult to understand?

    Wait, let me predict the standard response: well if we didn't have any laws, they wouldn't have to bother buying lawmakers, problem solved!

  • sarcasmic||

    Wait, let me predict the standard response: well if we didn't have any laws, they wouldn't have to bother buying lawmakers, problem solved!

    Um, no. More like "if the government didn't have the power to pick winners and losers, they wouldn't need to bribe those in power to choose them as the winner."

    You like to use the word "nuance," yet you are incapable of comprehending the idea of limited government.

  • Tony||

    If government makes a law that says a business can't poison people, it's punishing businesses that would poison people and rewarding those that don't. The problem with government not picking winners and losers is that we are then in a state social scientists call "anarchy." Winners are still chosen, but by rather different means than thoughtful regulation in the public interest.

  • sarcasmic||

    If government makes a law that says a business can't poison people

    I stopped reading right there, because the premise is just stupid. Ever heard of tort law?

  • Tony||

    Yes instead of preventing death, we simply allow the dead to sue. Much better. And much smaller government, because somehow courts aren't part of government.

    And then once we switch regulations over to torts, it will of course be time for tort reform to eliminate those pesky nuisance suits.

  • sarcasmic||

    Businesses love regulation because if they poison people, but are withing regulatory guidelines while they do it, they can't be sued.

    Why do you want businesses to poison people?

  • ||

    Businesses love regulation because if they poison people, but are withing regulatory guidelines while they do it, they can't be sued.

    ^ This. But don't expect Tony to reflect on this for even one second.

  • Zeb||

    Winners are only chosen if someone is empowered to do the choosing. Market outcomes are not choices in the same sense that the government picking winners and losers is.

  • Tony||

    Laissez-faire markets have been tried in various ways and in various places, and we know empirically that we can improve upon them by tempering their excesses with government regulation. The whole modern world is built on the idea.

  • MJBinAL||

    Tony, have you ever visited south Louisiana? If you like, we could set you up with an awesome swamp tour! Ever seen an alligator up close? This is a great opportunity for you ... and we'll all chip in for the tour so it won't cost you anything! Not as good perhaps as if you had the government steal the money from us to pay for it, but still, free to you!

    Oh, and you only need to buy a one way ticket down. We'll cover the cost of getting where you need to be!

  • Zeb||

    Yes, people with lots of wealth have power that others don't have. There is no political or economic system where that is not the case. But a free market system is the only one where ordinary people have any chance of non-violently challenging such power.

  • operagost||

    Well, clearly, since the leftist answer to every problem is to make more laws, then we just need to make bribery illegal! That should keep the billionaires from buying politicians, right?

    Sheesh, leftists like to call libertarians paranoid loonies, while they're the ones claiming that bribery is rampant. And even if it is, how is MORE government going to fix it?

  • Finrod||

    The obvious solution is to throw everyone into crippling poverty, like Venezuela. Then you don't have 1% owning half of everything any more.

  • Azathoth!!||

    But it's not always the same 1%.

    It takes a lot of work to be part of that 1%--one slip, and you're gone. So it's constantly changing.

  • CE||

    Income inequality is a sign of freedom, prosperity, and progress. Why would anyone want to eliminate it? Are they enemies of humanity? Or just freedom?

  • sarcasmic||

    Because of envy and an obsession with fairness. Those who want to eliminate it would rather everyone be equally poor than be unequally rich.

  • Tony||

    Paranoid nonsense as usual. It's actually a genuine thought-out concern for the well-being of society.

  • sarcasmic||

    No, it is not thought-out at all. It is based purely on emotion. Inequality is that tide that lifts all boats. Any attempt to "cure" inequality lowers the tide.

  • Tony||

    Funny because the greatest expansion of human equality and prosperity in history occurred during an era of what even I would call confiscatory tax rates and massive government spending.

    Since we've been trying it your way--the cut taxes for the rich over and over way--wages have stagnated and the country is falling apart one bridge at a time.

    All of this is predicted by mainstream economics, by the way.

  • esteve7||

    those are words you've just said, but I doubt you understand any of it.

  • sarcasmic||

    Wages don't mean shit. Money is not wealth. What someone can purchase with the money is what matters.

    In the glorious period in the 70s when wages peaked, what could those wages buy?

    Tell you what, I'd rather live today with today's wages and what they can buy than in the 70s.

  • sarcasmic||

    I remember the 70s. Barely. They sucked economically. Though they were much more free. Cops weren't paramilitary, kids could play outside without parents risking jail for not hovering over them, didn't have to show your papers whenever you wanted to do something..

  • Tony||

    Almost all of the technologies you're for some reason making this conversation about wouldn't exist without government spending on things you think it shouldn't spend on.

  • sarcasmic||

    Almost all of the technologies you're for some reason making this conversation about wouldn't exist without government spending...

    Yeah! Without government there would be no research, no advances in technology, no nothing! Government invented fire! Government invented the wheel! Government invented government!

    Preach it Brother!

    I'm done with this conversation.

  • Calidissident||

    Government spending post WW2 was lower in both per capita and % of GDP terms than it is today, and this is even more true if you exclude military spending from the calculation. Tax revenue was also about the same or lower in these terms. Apparently increasing marginal tax rates is all that's needed for success, you totally figured out economics there Tony.

  • sarcasmic||

    Fears about inequality are based upon the false premise that there is a fixed amount of wealth in society. That one person having a bigger piece of the pie requires someone else having a smaller piece.
    That is false.
    The truth is that when the pie gets bigger, every slice gets bigger. Even the small ones.

  • Tony||

    Except when it doesn't and all the gains go to the parasites at the top.

  • sarcasmic||

    Show me a "poor" person and I'll show you someone with a smart phone, internet, flat screen television, air conditioning, etc.

    Show me someone in the 70s who had any of those things.

  • Tony||

    Jesus Christ you are a Republican from the 90s.

    How about who the fuck are you to say when poor people have it good enough? And healthcare is more expensive than any of that by orders of magnitude. And you don't think poor people should have any if they can't afford it.

  • sarcasmic||

    Good enough? It's never good enough. That's a moving goalpost. My point was that they have it a shit ton better than at any other period in human history.

  • Tony||

    So do the top 1%. You're not making a coherent point.

  • Tony||

    Again, Mom's basement without paying rent. If you're not paying a fair amount in taxes, you're using public services for free, which actually is stealing.

  • Tony||

    If we didn't live in a democracy you would have a point. But you get to vote, so you do have input. Because you have to share society with hundreds of millions of other people, that doesn't mean that you'll always get your way. If you think you should, you should really reexamine where the psychopathy is here.

  • RabbitHead||

    Wait. Who isn't paying their fair share in your mind? The. Basement dwellers, the "I have mine, so fuck you" crowd, or just anyone with the wrong opinions?

  • Azathoth!!||

    As noted, 'good enough' is an unreachable goal post.

    But we DO have a measure that illustrates without using something like this--

    Show me a "poor" person and I'll show you someone with a smart phone, internet, flat screen television, air conditioning, etc.

    Show me someone in the 70s who had any of those things.

    No one in the 70s had any of those things. Because they didn't exist--but the idea is there.

    In 1000AD, the meals of the poor and the meals of the rich were vastly different--often, the poor were not even permitted to eat what the wealthy ate, the food was literally not available to them.

    In 2017AD the food available to the poor is the same as that available to the rich. But it's expensive. Yes. So we've figured out ways to make those things for less.

    And that's the crux of it.

    We've taken the gap and altered it immensely. The poor listen to the same music, wear the same type of clothes(if not the same brand), have similar pastimes, have access to equivalent merchandise as the rich.

    There is not much real gap socially.

    This is what we've striven for--to make a 'life of leisure' available to all--not by taking away from the rich, but by moving the 'price' of that life ever lower.

  • DarrenM||

    If wealth was static, there would be none and we'd still be living in caves.

  • MJBinAL||

    Oh how cute! Look everybody! Tony is trying to think!

  • esteve7||

    what we should do to eliminate income inequality

    - kill or enslave everyone, that's where that idea goes.

  • CE||

    Everyone should ditch Loki. That guy is bad news.

  • Eidde||

    Taylor Swift is dating the god of mischief?

  • Devastator||

    at some point, I'm pretty sure she kicked him to the curb a long time ago, probably too stable and sincere for her.

  • bevis the lumberjack||

    "a particularly contentious and consequential presidential battle."

    Consequential?

    Vote one way and the President will be an incompetent, thin-skinned, corrupt buffoon. Vote the other way and the President will be....an incompetent, thin-skinned, corrupt buffoon.

    I mean, they had different plumbing, but other than that they were identical.

  • Tony||

    HRC might have cankles but she wouldn't be handing world dominance to China hand-over-fist out of sheer monumental idiocy.

  • Incomprehensible Bitching||

    Why do you keep bringing up Hillary Clinton? What a difference, at this point, does it make?

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    Hell, no. She'd be gettin' paid to do it!

  • DarrenM||

    She's be handing it to Russia instead for the same reason.

  • Tony||

    But anyway, I don't get the appeal of Taylor Swift's unrelatable life saga, but who am I to tell tween girls what to like.*


    *It's not like I'm Roy Moore.

  • Brian||

    Stop pretending, Tony. We know you wish you were TS, like all the other girls.

  • Tony||

    We do have similar taste in men.

  • Brian||

    She's probably a lot more choosy.

  • Tony||

    Choosy? She's had more boyfriends than everyone I've ever known. One of them was John Mayer.

  • Brian||

    Choosiness is a function of down-sampling, not binary availability.

    For example: we know lots of people won't let you blow them, but that doesn't make you choosy.

  • Tony||

    Choosiness was always my problem. It was so rare to find someone who was sufficient arm candy and who could also carry a decent conversation. I observe that in the straight world that men often see the ability to carry a decent conversation as a negative trait in women.

  • Brian||

    Straight men are the worst... so good.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    Yes, your relationship problems have been because YOU'RE too choosy. Sure.

  • Brian||

    It can't possibly be because he's a whiny bitch.

    It's so hard to find a good conversationalists these days. You know: one that appreciates whiny bitching and constant progressive SJW moralizing.

  • Tony||

    Did I say I had relationship problems? I do feel bad for all the hearts I've broken.

  • damikesc||

    I've always said Tony has a lot in common with cholesterol.

  • Brian||

    I'm sorry Tony, but uncles don't count.

  • RabbitHead||

    So you DO identify with Taylor Swift!

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    LOL, everything is about Roy Moore to you, isn't it?

    It's good to have a hobby but I would think you could find something better than that.

  • Rhywun||

    Wow, Taylor Dayne's really keeping it together.

  • damikesc||

    You know, maybe she knows what she's doing.

    She's setting sales records. Marie Claire, most assuredly, is not.

    As Jordan said, Republicans also buy my shoes. Not sure why somebody successful would take advice on improving their business from folks who are far less than successful.

  • Sigivald||

    Amen, Nick.

    Request: Could you write every article?

    Because you're a lot better at it than most of the people doing so.

  • AndyWingall||

    I don't think the editors of Marie Clair had libertarianism in mind when they were criticizing Taylor Swift. Can we use a new term "bubble gum Marxism" to describe the lunacy taking place across colleges and the media today?

  • Rockabilly||

    "bubble gum Marxism" - tha's a good one.

    How about a marx bubble gum card collection.

    All the mass murderers - collect them all!! Stalin, Lenin, Mao!!!

  • UnrepentantCurmudgeon||

    I don't care a whit for her music, but good on her for standing apart from the fray. I want an entertainer to entertain, not use their status as a political platform. If I recall, Mark Wahlberg feels the same way.

  • fafalone||

    Welll..... there's some pretty compelling evidence Taylor used to browse 4chan's /b/, and Trumpanzees are an epidemic plague there, so there's more reason to question her silence than a regular person...

  • Sevo||

    "Trumpanzees"
    How
    .
    .
    .
    .
    sad.

  • RabbitHead||

    Please tell me this is sarcasm

  • josh||

    Not sharing your politics with everyone isn't being apolitical.

  • Arizona_Guy||

    I like Elvis Presley's take on things.

    In the late 1960s, a reporter tried to pin him down about the Vietnam War. His reply:

    "Ma'am, I'm just an entertainer."

  • macsnafu||

    Being apolitical apparently IS being political, according to Marie Claire.

  • ||

    Marie Claire is still waiting?

    How about 'fuck you' and 'mind your fucken business'?

  • Devastator||

    fucking*

  • Rockabilly||

    marxism is now in full derp mode. Even GQ is not immune.

  • Brother Kyfho||

    Cultural Marxism requires that the dialectic be exercised constantly - us vs them, and if you refuse to participate, then you're automatically with them.

  • vek||

    1. T-Swift is pretty hot. I don't listen to her horrible music, but she is pretty hot. So she has that going for her.

    2. She is almost certainly to the right of the media culture today, or else she would likely just be talking about her opinions. The fact that she's white, started in country music, AND not willing to talk about politics pretty much guarantees she's a conservative or libertarian leaner.

    I don't think every actor/musician should talk about their politics, it has in fact made me dislike a number of people for their lefty stupidity over the years... But it has also made me LOVE some other people more that are conservative/libertarian. I think from a business perspective it's wise to just not ever bring it up. You either should do that or REALLY sell your politics as part of your thing. If you do just enough to alienate, but not enough to draw people in specifically because of, you're just screwing yourself.

  • Devastator||

    Not a big Swift fan but FUCK YOU Marie Claire, get back to fashion and stay out of politics, even Swift has enough sense to do that.

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