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What IS Going On With Jobs? The "Dark Enlightenment" Hits Gandhi Stage Two

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Many Liberals are Naifs and Innocents

by Christopher Chantrill
January 21, 2014 at 12:00 am


WE CONSERVATIVES, crouching in the trenches of the political wars, experience liberals as haters and culture warriors. When we think of liberals we think of the Kos Kidz over at DailyKos and the execrable hosts on MSNBC. We think of the liberal journalists that sneer “who me?” to the charge of journalistic bias.

But I was reminded this last week that many liberals are naifs and innocents. They don’t see feminists as the professional class making a virtue out of poor women raising their children; they think of career women and two-income families as a simple natural progress from darkness to light. They worry about “greed” and “inequality” without realizing that their worry didn’t just issue from concern for fellow humans but from the power project of the big-government advocates. When they express dismay about the retreat of “Merry Christmas” into “Happy Holidays” they don’t realize that “Merry Christmas” — like Eeyore — was pushed.

This innocence extends upwards to people that really should know better. Take Dr. Ben Santer of the Lawrence Livermore Laboratory, one of the government climate-change scientists that appear in the Climategate emails. Says he:

I had always assumed that if the science was credible, we could just rest our case on the science. It was enough to publish high-quality papers, to establish some human culpability in observed climate change, and that ultimately that would be good enough, and that policymakers would take the right decisions based on the best available scientific evidence.

Let us take Dr. Santer at his word. All he wants to do is good science, and leave the “policymakers” to act on it. But Dr. Santer needs to understand that science has been a concubine of the politicians starting no later than the Napoleonic Wars when the Prussians invented the research university. The idea was to make the German state more modern and powerful.

There are also innocents down in Silicon Valley. The techies think of themselves as hip and progressive and sneer at conservatives. But Walter Russell Mead warns that big government understands the power of the information age only too well and it wants more of it; the Obamis just finished using the Google guys to micro-target the electorate for the 2012 election.

Meanwhile in the Bay Area the Berkeley progressives are starting to stigmatize the tech companies as Big Data and the politicians are desperate for more money. Hey Sergey and Larry! Are you guys up to the embarrassment of lunching with a Neanderthal conservative at the Chick-fil-A down the road in Sunnyvale? You might be desperate for our support in the coming years.

This year we have the Obamacare disaster, and the na´ve liberals that drank the KoolAid about helping the “uninsured” find to their dismay that they are the ones paying for it. Now a Wall Street Journal report says that most of the Obamacare signups are people that already had insurance. The “uninsured” aren’t signing up.

Hey innocents! You voted for a guy that blew up the health care system and now Obamacare isn’t even going to get health insurance to the uninsured!

Liberal innocents buy into the moral urgency of the “universal system.” There has to be a system, they cry, a system so that every child gets an education and everybody gets health care. The problem with a catch-word like that is that it always ends up covering up a monster. Here’s one unearthed by the New York Post (H/T Peggy Noonan).

It appears that there’s a school in Far Rockaway in Queens that’s a poster child for what’s wrong with the universal system of childhood education.

There are no gym or art classes... The library is a junk room; the nurse’s office lacks essentials; there are no math or reading books for the Common Core curriculum.

And the principal, Marcella Sills, doesn’t show up for work much.

This is why I keep banging away on the idea that government is force. Because once you forget that you forget a lot more things. You forget that system is domination and that universal system is universal domination (H/T Frankfurt School).

When you remember that government is force, you realize that the government is not interested in education, except as education increases its power; not interested in science, except as science increases its power. Dr. Ben Santer’s Livermore Laboratory was opened by Edward Teller to research the nuclear physics for Curtis LeMay’s bombology.

I tend to get impatient with the liberal innocents I know. After all, an educated person ought to know better. But we will turn the innocents away from liberalism more by friendly conversation that by didactic impatience. Mea culpa.

Christopher Chantrill blogs at www.roadtothemiddleclass.com.

Buy his Road to the Middle Class.

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“But I saw a man yesterday who knows a fellow who had it from a chappie that said that Urquhart had been dipping himself a bit recklessly off the deep end.”  —Freddy Arbuthnot
Dorothy L. Sayers, Strong Poison

Civil Society

“Civil Society”—a complex welter of intermediate institutions, including businesses, voluntary associations, educational institutions, clubs, unions, media, charities, and churches—builds, in turn, on the family, the primary instrument by which people are socialized into their culture and given the skills that allow them to live in broader society and through which the values and knowledge of that society are transmitted across the generations.
Francis Fukuyama, Trust

Hugo on Genius

“Tear down theory, poetic systems... No more rules, no more models... Genius conjures up rather than learns... ” —Victor Hugo
César Graña, Bohemian versus Bourgeois


“We have met with families in which for weeks together, not an article of sustenance but potatoes had been used; yet for every child the hard-earned sum was provided to send them to school.”
E. G. West, Education and the State

Faith & Purpose

“When we began first to preach these things, the people appeared as awakened from the sleep of ages—they seemed to see for the first time that they were responsible beings, and that a refusal to use the means appointed was a damning sin.”
Finke, Stark, The Churching of America, 1776-1990


“When we received Christ,” Phil added, “all of a sudden we now had a rule book to go by, and when we had problems the preacher was right there to give us the answers.”
James M. Ault, Jr., Spirit and Flesh


A writer who says that there are no truths, or that all truth is ’merely relative’, is asking you not to believe him. So don’t.
Roger Scruton, Modern Philosophy

Faith and Politics

As far as the Catholic Church is concerned, the principal focus of her interventions in the public arena is the protection and promotion of the dignity of the person, and she is thereby consciously drawing particular attention to principles which are not negotiable... [1.] protection of life in all its stages, from the first moment of conception until natural death; [2.] recognition and promotion of the natural structure of the family... [3.] the protection of the right of parents to educate their children.
Pope Benedict XVI, Speech to European Peoples Party, 2006

China and Christianity

At first, we thought [the power of the West] was because you had more powerful guns than we had. Then we thought it was because you had the best political system. Next we focused on your economic system. But in the past twenty years, we have realized that the heart of your culture is your religion: Christianity.
David Aikman, Jesus in Beijing

Religion, Property, and Family

But the only religions that have survived are those which support property and the family. Thus the outlook for communism, which is both anti-property and anti-family, (and also anti-religion), is not promising.
F.A. Hayek, The Fatal Conceit


Conservatism is the philosophy of society. Its ethic is fraternity and its characteristic is authority — the non-coercive social persuasion which operates in a family or a community. It says ‘we should...’.
Danny Kruger, On Fraternity

US Life in 1842

Families helped each other putting up homes and barns. Together, they built churches, schools, and common civic buildings. They collaborated to build roads and bridges. They took pride in being free persons, independent, and self-reliant; but the texture of their lives was cooperative and fraternal.
Michael Novak, The Spirit of Democratic Capitalism

presented by Christopher Chantrill

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