Category Archives: politics

Peter Schiff Speaks for 1 Percent at Occupy Wall Street

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To Occupy Wall Street protesters: Are you sure you’re fighting the right battle?

Many protesters in the Occupy Wall Street movement have roundly denounced any and all forms of capitalism as the source of all our present ills. That’s one of the reasons they chose Wall Street as the place to make their angst known.

But while they march and chant and propose lists of endless demands I can’t help but wonder, are those who are so outraged clear on who their enemy really is?

Its the wedding of a select few corporations to the government combined with a lack of accountability that is the problem. The father of capitalism, Adam Smith, was opposed to the notion of joint-stock companies which enjoy limited liability, enforced by the state  (ie. the East India Company) for many of the reasons the Occupy Wall Street protesters are now upset. He didn’t believe corporations should be considered legal entities in themselves (from which we get the modern view that corporations are persons). And he was opposed to the separation of ownership and management which he rightly predicted would end up harming both the owners and managers.

So who was for this joint-stock system which has blossomed into what we have today?

Many of the Occupy Wall Street movement are openly sympathetic to socialistic notions. What those protesters likely fail to understand is that the same movement which supported socialistic economic policies also supported joint-stock companies because they believed that by allowing the common man to own stock he would have a better chance to become wealthy but in order to encourage the common man to take such a risk his liability needed to be limited. And Smith, among others, accurately predicted the problems that limited liability would produce. Its really not fair to place all the blame on CEOs for accepting golden parachutes when the real problem is that such a disconnected ownership structure provides the perfect environment in which to draft such contracts.

So if the protestors want to be consistent they need to read their history to understand that 1. capitalism is not their enemy nor the cause of the corruption they are rightly upset over and that 2. the fault does not lie solely with corporations in general (not all companies that are listed on the NASDAQ or the Dow Jones Industrial Index are evil) or even corrupt corporations but with the toxic mix of a select few corporations which enjoy government favor and protection.

What essentially needs to happen is for the Tea Party to mix their hatred of the government with the  Occupy Wall Street’s hatred of corrupt businesses. I’m pretty sure the two would be pleasantly surprised at the result.

Here’s a funny video from 1949 on “What is a corporation?”

Evidence of homofascism

I was recently asked on Quora for my thoughts as a social conservative. Being a libertarian my answer was more or less that as long as I am afforded the freedom to disagree and openly criticize actions I consider to be immoral then I don’t mind affording others the ability to live in immoral (and irresponsible) ways.

As part of my answer I mentioned the oppression of natural marriage proponents by homosexuals and was subsequently asked to provide evidence to substantiate my claim.

Here is my answer.

The issue is how, in the quest for normalization/affirmation, “gay rights” will result in oppressive laws/regimes like the Human/Homosexual Rights Commission of Canada.

Redefining marriage will certainly affect how everyone thinks about marriage and statistical data shows that in countries where marriage has been redefined to mean nothing more than two people posessing strong feelings for one another, the number of people who get married and stay married are dismal at best.

Of course the redefinition of marriage is not the only cause behind the decline of the institution of marriage, it was already sick as evidenced by the prominance of sexual promiscuity and high divorce rates. But redefining marriage in an attempt to divorce it from its biological moorings is like adding a new sickness on already diseased animal.

As for the oppression that forced normalization/acceptance of homosexuality brings, I submit the following list as examples of what is becoming known as “homo-fascism”, a term I find quite apt and not the least bit ironic.

Please note as well that these are actual cases that have already happened, this is not a “slippery slope” hypothetical scenario. The politically corerect ship of homosexual persecution has already sailed.

I’ll add more as time permits, but this should prove ample evidence that homosexual fascism is not a myth as the most popular entry in the Urban Dictionary maintains but a real problem that needs to be addressed by the homosexual community if they want non-homosexuals to tolerate their views. And please note that I am using tolerance in the way it is supposed to be used here meaning someone who disagrees with homosexuals but who doesn’t want to infringe on their right to destroy their bodies as they see fit through their unnatural sexual preferences.

So it seems that the topmost rated definition of “homofascism” on the urban dictionary which is blatently false. Homo-fascism is not overwrought or hysterical. Its a real and growing trend.

On the moral compassion of social justice

[From CNN]

It’s amazing to me how many people think that voting to have the government give poor people money is compassion. Helping poor and suffering people is compassion. Voting for our government to use guns to give money to help poor and suffering people is immoral self-righteous bullying laziness.

People need to be fed, medicated, educated, clothed, and sheltered, and if we’re compassionate we’ll help them, but you get no moral credit for forcing other people to do what you think is right. There is great joy in helping people, but no joy in doing it at gunpoint. -Penn Jillette

Bonus: Here is a great interview of Penn by the CATO Institute:

Zo Rachel hammers Maxine Waters & the CBC

Letting poor people vote is un-American!

I came across a Facebook friend’s post which declared “Right-wing commentator: Poor people voting is ‘un-American'”

Since the liberals who were commenting on the story appeared to completely miss the point that the commentator was getting at, I decided to help them out:

Oppression should be opposed regardless of who the oppressors are or who they happen to want to oppress. This goes for rich oppressing the poor through the purchasing of government favors with their dollars just as much as it does the poor oppressing the rich through the purchasing of government favors with their votes.

Its not so much that the poor shouldn’t be allowed to vote, its that the poor shouldn’t be allowed to vote for the legalized plundering of others.

Liberals love to invoke class warfare and since they assume that terms like “rich” and “poor” are prescriptive of a static group of people and not descriptive of a temporal economic state, the notion that “the poor” could ever oppress “the rich” is simply unheard of. Simply put, they are operating from Karl Marx’s playbook where “the poor” are likely to rise up and overthrow their capitalistic masters any day now.

It may be apocryphal, but it still fits:

A democracy will continue to exist up until the time that the voters discover that they can vote themselves generous gifts from the public treasury. From that moment on they will vote for the candidates who promise the most benefits from the public treasury. -Alexander Tyler, University of Edinburgh history professor in 1887

So in a sense the liberal characterization of the conservative commentator is right. Letting poor people vote is, indeed, un-American if what they are voting for is to legally plunder the rich, or anyone else (like common taxpayers like myself) for that matter.

Exploding TV sets and government regulation

Many people today consider government regulation to be a necessary evil. Without government overseeing greedy corporations, the thinking goes, attention to quality, and especially safety, will degrade.

It is assumed that government is the only entity with the ability and motivation to look out for the interests of everyone.

To help illustrate how faulty the notion of government regulation being our saving grace is, let’s take a look at how the Soviet Union regulated the production of its most effective propaganda outlet, the common TV set. Keep in mind that the USSR had an interest in producing quality TVs in order to govern more effectively.

Soviet television sets tended to explode, because of faulty manufacturing. The surprising and alarming propensity of Russian receivers to blow up, and by extension the apprehension it causes in Soviet viewers, was one of the stranger features of Soviet life. By one estimate, sixty percent of all apartment fires in Moscow are caused by mass-produced Soviet television sets, which hada tendency to explode. Of the 715 apartment fires in Moscow in November 1987, 90 were blamed on exploding television sets, a statistic the Soviet press viewed as an alarming commentary on Soviet technology. Police said three television models notorious for defective wiring are being removed from the market, and millions of warning leaflets have been mailed to television owners.

Its true that markets aren’t efficient (in terms of the efficient market hypothesis ), but as inefficient as they are, governments are worse. It is a fallacy to think that a small subset of the market can do a better job than the whole market in ferreting out bad products.

The elusive gay gene

[HT A Queer Thing Happened to America]

It was pointed out 11 years ago how time and again “scientists have claimed that particular genes or chromosomal regions are associated with behavioral traits, only to withdraw their findings when they were not replicated. Findings linking specific genes to complex human behaviors all were announced with great fanfare; all were greeted—without skepticism—in the popular press; all are now in disrepute.” Nevertheless, considerable grant money has been available in this country for research seeking to show a genetic basis for homosexuality. Researchers now openly admit that after searching for more than 20 years, they are still unable to find the “gay gene.”

Full paper is here

The Myth of the Robber Barons with Burt Folsom

[HT Markets & Economy]

Politically Incorrect Guide to Capitalism by Robert P. Murphy