Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Two For The Price Of One...

Damned fools.

Fool Number One remarks on a Fox interview with Fool Number Two:
"This interview of a member of Occupy Wall Street will never be aired on FOX News."
Well as much as that may be true, what is just as certain is that my rebuttal of Fool Number Two will not appear in the comments to Fool Number One's post, because, as much as he likes Avro Vulcan pictures (he told me so in email), he doesn't like having to put up and defend a rational case for his views. He's not like me you know; apparently I'm "narcissistic" or something.

I make my remarks here instead. From the video:
"After thirty years of having our living standards decrease whilst the wealthiest 1% have had it better than ever, I think it's time for, I dunno, maybe some participation in our democracy - that isn't funded by news cameras and gentlemen such as yourself."
The first mistake he makes there is in his premise - which is to suppose that "living standards" are a thing that goes up or down for 99% of the population, rather than an abstraction from the appraisals of individual people that vary over time and with circumstance. Immediately consequent to that error is his failure to account for the discriminatory force of government against different people's "living standards". Robbing Peter to give to Paul might raise Paul's living standards, but it necessarily detracts from Peter's. Oh, but of course that will be OK so long as Peter doesn't belong to a politically-favoured sub-identity collective.

His second error there is to suppose that living standards are the same as comparative income levels - though perhaps I am being a little too lenient in calling this an "error" rather than a lie. The bringing to market of both new products and better products over the last thirty years has facilitated a vast increase in living standards. For instance, cars produced today are generally faster, safer, more comfortable, more efficient and less polluting than cars produced thirty years ago. That is only an obvious example - much the same is true for many other products and services many of us tend to take for granted in our everyday lives, from food, clothes, houses, environmental conditions, telecommunications, the world wide web... etc. He might dismiss all of that, and I would think he'd be stupid to do so, but he is only entitled to do so with regards to his own values - to presume such a dismissal on behalf of other people would be monstrous.

Third: that "participation-in-democracy" he calls for can only either be participation in the same democracy as is instantiated in the U.S. now, but only with Fox News subsumed by the Left, or a fast-forward to the Left's long-term wet dream of direct democracy and the subjection of corporations and other economic arrangements to more direct, localized forms of democratic control. However, it is not as if prior to 1996, the same mutations at work in the U.S. government today had not already been metastasizing for decades. Had a subprime mortgage crisis appeared in 1996, does anyone seriously doubt that Clinton and Greenspan would have bailed out the banks? Of course they would have.

On localized direct democracy... that's just another variation on communism with its prerequisite abolishment of private property rights.
"I think myself as well as many other people would like to see a little more economic justice or social justice - jesus stuff - as far as feeding the poor, healthcare for the sick. You know I find it really entertaining that people like to hold a bill of rights above their [heads] screaming at gay soldiers, but they just can't wrap their heads around the idea that a for-profit healthcare system doesn't work."
There is no such thing as "social" justice, or "economic" justice as distinct subcategories of justice. There is only the justice which arises from action in respect of the rights of individuals in society and the manner in which they are transgressed. Justice is already "social" by definition, and because it is so, it already has economic implications. Feeding the poor and tending the sick are rightfully to be regarded as acts of charity to be dispensed freely, as it is only when such acts are dispensed freely can any moral approval be attributed to he who dispenses them. A man coerced against his will into giving to the poor does not deserve any moral approval for giving since he only did it to avoid punitive sanction.

As for the outrageous presumption that a for-profit healthcare system "doesn't work"... sure. A free-market in healthcare, one run by entrepreneurs in response to customers wouldn't work. It couldn't work could it? It would afford no means of expanding the collective social-engineering premise into the field of healthcare - this most vital of economic fields for people who suffer from injury, sickness and old-age. As Beth Haynes says in just one of her many, many posts on this topic:
"When allowed to function free from coercive egalitarian standards, the market will raise the prosperity of all. when price, profit and loss signals are manipulated (even if done with the intention of helping the most disadvantaged) everyone suffers."
With that, I close and point the reader in the direction of Beth Haynes' blog as her knowledge of healthcare matters far surpasses my own (what with me being healthy and she being a doctor).


  1. Free markets deliver nothing but inequality and injustice. Your recipes are shown to be wrong the world over. So why don’t you shut up, Michael Fucking Fagan?

    At the heart of the students’ agenda is the demand that education be recognized as a common right for all, not a “consumer good” to be sold on the open market.

    “People were losing their jobs and their houses. Almost 40 percent of young Americans can’t find a decent job. Meantime, fat cats or financial fraudsters on Wall Street are sitting pretty up on the 17th floor and still getting their big bonuses.”
    “We’ve seen wages and jobs and living standards leak away for 30 years,” Leier said. “Entire generations have been told to suck it up, believe in the market, trust the old political parties, and have received little in return. The anger and frustration were entirely predictable.”

  2. And, of course, there is the total refutation of all your iditotic private property bullshit - but you would probably be intellectually overtaxed to read it, let alone understand it:

    Book review: The Price of Civilization: Economics and Ethics After the Fall, by Jeffrey Sachs

  3. Would you be the same Anonymous commenter who, when exchanging views with Nathan Novak recently, claimed to be a reporter at the Taipei Times?


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