Readers of this blog will know of my respect for Victor Davis Hanson. In my opinion, he is one of the prescient minds of our time and is a consummate and true historian, not content just to review history but to draw lessons from it. He is also a writer with the gift of clarity and incisiveness, a gift he gives to everyone who reads his columns.
I also am a big fan of Stacy McCain and his co-blogger, Smitty, over at the Other McCain, so when I get the chance to steal content from both, it is a real win-win for me.
He is a false prophet of an anti-religion, whose chief reason for existing is the destruction of America. He’s an un-remarkable piece of work, selected, groomed, credentialed and escorted to his current position not because he has shred #1 of merit in the traditional sense; rather, that he’s a reliable tool for the task of demolition.
He is the totalitarian poster child for the return to a pre-Enlightenment patronage system, where the wealth stays in the hands of the Cool People, with occasional bread & circuses, and regular games for the proles. There is some wealth redistribution, but absolutely no power redistribution whatsoever.
His is the moment in time where the Ruling Class decided that it was time to finish the Progressive project, before technology rendered it completely unattainable. The Ruling Class still hold some sway, but, after Scott Brown, the ObamaCare vote, and a laundry list that fills half of this blog’s database, the Tea Party is still holding on.
Obama himself is irrelevant. The political awakening is [relevant].
VDH’s piece is also very relevant:
Sometime about mid-2009 America began changing psychologically. True, to the naked eye, America retained the old hustle and bustle, but in an insidious fashion it began to think a bit differently. And that change in mentality explains in part why a year-and-a-half recession that officially ended in summer 2009 seems never to have ended at all.
In short, a sizable fraction of the upper-incomes is hesitant, defensive, unsure — and to such a degree that for a while longer it is not hiring, buying, or investing in the old way. It believes not only that there is no certainty in the tax code, the cost of new entitlements, or our national finance, but that even if there were their own successes would be suspect and earn antipathy rather than praise.
In mirror-image fashion, those of the lower incomes are likewise hesitant to take risks — unsure that the rewards of work in the private sector are all that much better than what government can offer through subsidies. The former group fears government will grow; the latter that it will not. The one suspects that Obama will confiscate more earnings; the other hopes that it will. Either way, there are fewer enterprising employers and fewer self-motivated galvanized workers.
The result of this two-front war is that America has been slowing down…
The result of all this is a sort of unending but rarely expressed war. The business man does not know what his taxes are, only that they should go up, given his privilege. He is judged not by the good that he does but by the excessive money he makes. The corporation does not know what the rules of the game are, whether his energy is too polluting, his workers not unionized enough, or his product not regulated enough. None believe Obamacare, as promised, will reduce costs. None believe that government borrowing and massive new entitlements are reducing unemployment and raising GDP. None believe that wealth can be created by record deficits and aggregate debt. None believe that printing ever more money will not lead to inflation.
What we have, then, is a war on two ends: the better off are hesitant to work more, given their fears that additional profits will either be more difficult to come by or not remain their own; the poor are hesitant to work more, given their expectations that entitlements will be extended and will be easier to come by. They both expect more government and they both as a result are not so eager to take risks and seek greater income in the private sector.
The result of Obama’s war is the current three-year slowdown. Obama in response counts on two strategies to nevertheless be reelected: either at some point the private sector will conclude that it is not going to get any better, and thus it is preferable to shrug, take its medicine, and get back to work, and so the economy picks up a little in 2012; or, to the degree that Obama can blame the lengthy pause solely on the minority of the undeserving rich, he believes that an angry and fearful bare majority may agree.
Or as Smitty accurately paraphrased it – “Postmodernism Sucks”.
Postmodernism is the belief that allows Obama to play 90 rounds of golf and then criticize regular Americans for being “lazy”, to lament about the government not being allowed to do “big things anymore” while talking the US down as just another country – one of many, no better than most, worse than some.
It is the kind of belief that allows the takers to look down their noses at the producers as if were living in a chapter of Atlas Shrugged, for Marxist #OWSers to be passed off as “populists” and for “journalists” to openly mourn the passing of a tyrannical communist leader and the UN to honor him in memoriam with flags a half staff. It also allows MSM columnists to praise communism and openly wish that Obama had those totalitarian powers – to the point that he was encouraged to ignore Congress and the law.
It is the belief that allows a president to call for austerity in public and then spend literally tens of millions on family “vacations” in just three years, that allows a First Lady to wear J. Crew and take trips to Target in DC but out of the public eye to don $2,000 sun dresses and consume gourmet meals.
It allows Obama to call for compromise when he is unwilling to do so, often moving the goal posts at the eleventh hour (even for his friends, Harry the Mortician and San Fran Nan). It is the perspective that allows the Nobel Committee to award a president the peace prize for nothing, only to have him follow on to prosecute a war in Libya, to violate of Pakistani sovereignty and increase drone strikes – even to the point of killing American citizens (the last two I agree with but then I didn’t get a Nobel Peace Prize)
Postmodernism does not only suck, it is a disease that rots away the foundations of liberty.