Friday, May 14, 2010

Totalitarian Lemonade

The EU Skull-Dragon

There’s nothing like imminent bankruptcy and the prospect of sovereign default to focus the attention of a national leader on what’s really important: gaining increased political power.

That’s what German Chancellor Angela Merkel sees in the threat to the euro brought about by the Greek debt crisis. Where others see lemons, Ms. Merkel is salivating over the prospect of political lemonade. According to Reuters:

BERLIN, May 13 (Reuters) — German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Thursday the euro’s troubles offered a chance for the EU to strengthen its economic and political union, not just its common currency.

Speaking at a ceremony in Aachen where Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk was awarded the Charlemagne Prize for furthering European unity, Merkel said the future of the EU was at stake in the challenges to its monetary amalgamation.

“If the euro fails, not only the currency fails. Europe fails too, and the idea of European unification. We have a common currency, but no common political and economic union. And this is exactly what we must change. To achieve this — therein lies the opportunity of this crisis.“ [emphasis added]

It seems that Chancellor Merkel is taking a page from Rahm Emanuel, who once said, “You never want a serious crisis to go to waste.” She and her fellow EUniks are not certainly going to let this one go to waste. The imminent collapse of the euro offers Brussels the unique opportunity to upgrade the degree of European central governance to “Full Stranglehold”.

Ms. Merkel recognizes the scope of the current crisis:

In a speech broadcast live on WDR television, Merkel said the crisis over the euro’s future was “not just any crisis, it is the strongest test Europe has faced since 1990, if not in the 53 years since the treaties of Rome.”

“This test is existential — it must be passed. If it does not manage to (do that), the consequences for Europe and beyond are unforeseeable,” the conservative Christian Democrat said.

Greece’s debt emergency and a worsening deficit crunch in Spain, Portugal and Ireland have eroded the euro’s strength.

But Merkel held off on backing a 110-billion-euro ($139.7 billion) bailout for Greece until it was clear contagion was starting to afflict the euro zone, dismaying France over the delay. Germany and France had long been the twin engines of EU integration.

The structure of the EU sets up Germany as the economic powerhouse and makes France the political controller. In effect, Germany provides the huge engine for the European economy, but France gets to sit behind the wheel and drive the car.

As a result, Germany has hitherto been reluctant to cede any further control to Brussels, but the magnitude of the current crisis seems to offer an irresistible lure to Ms. Merkel:
- - - - - - - - -
In the decade since the euro was created, Germany has resisted the idea of tightening economic policy coordination, fearful states like France could exploit such a discussion to try to exert influence over the European Central Bank.

Germany was also concerned that its export-reliant economic model could come under fire from EU partners that want Germany to do more to boost long-stagnant domestic demand.

But the contagion crisis has forced Merkel to drop her resistance to closer coordination, inviting recognition that it is the price Germany must pay to win agreement from other EU members to a radical strengthening of the EU’s Stability and Growth Pact that Berlin wants.

“Closer coordination” means that Brussels will control the budgets and fiscal policy decisions of the eurozone’s member states. In other words, the nations of Europe would surrender the last vestiges of their sovereignty, and there would be nothing left but “regions”. Yes, the old national parliaments would remain, but only as quaint tourist attractions and the source of sinecures for favored political acquaintances of the elite.

Here’s where you can see the boilerplate about an “ever-closer union” leave Earth’s gravity well and reach rhetorical escape velocity:

Merkel was confident that Europe would overcome the crisis in her speech in Aachen, a western German city that was for centuries the place of coronation of German kings.

“The euro is more than just our currency. It is the furthest achievement of European integration so far. It stands for the European ideal. And I stick to my vision that one day, all EU member states will also have the euro as a currency,” she said.

“The furthest achievement of European integration” is to have all the affairs of the member states — legal, social, fiscal, and monetary — controlled by a single unaccountable bureaucratic entity which has never been elected and can never be removed by the people over whose lives it has assumed control.

Europeans: say hello to the Great Jug of Ever-Closer Lemonade.


Hat tip: Paul Weston.

37 comments:

Fjordman said...

There is some basis for viewing the EU as a Franco-German project, but I still see it primarily as a French imperial project. Frankly, France has been so instrumental in creating Eurabia that we could debate whether the country deserves to be formally punished for its involvement. However, the French themselves are losing their country because of this, so perhaps they have already punished themselves sufficiently.

rebelliousvanilla said...

What I really don't get is why Germany needs to please other countries? Last time I checked, Angela Merkel is the PM of Germany, not of the EU. Her sole interest should be the German people, not the achievement of European integration. Still, if you're into the multicultural claptrap and believe that ethnic groups are social constructs, then you have no reason to not support what she says. It's just bringing other people who are exactly like you under the EU banner.

Baron Bodissey said...

RV --

Remember: potential Nazism is the crime that has no statute of limitations. Any assertion of German national identity is immediately identified as neo-Nazism.

This will be true forever. The warrant never expires.

This is what keeps the Germans down. I don't think it even has to be explicit; it's something that has now been internalized.

ILIA TOLI said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ILIA TOLI said...

Wouldn't it be nice to give this group the widest publicity? The site for the 9-11 mosque

rebelliousvanilla said...

Baron, the problem is that I or any sane person doesn't care. And it won't be true forever. It will stop being true when:
a)Germans won't exist anymore, which will be the case if we don't change things around
b)We will stop caring about potential Nazism and all the claptrap coming from the left.
It's the same with liberalism and non-discrimination. It works until the non-discrimination people stop existing or no longer have power. It's either destroyed by the same people or through the destruction of those people.

Zenster said...

Per Merkel: “The euro is more than just our currency. It is the furthest achievement of European integration so far. It stands for the European ideal. And I stick to my vision that one day, all EU member states will also have the euro as a currency,” she said.

All the while studiously ignoring how that "furthest achievement" is also a gigantic spoke in the wheels of any recovery.

As a recent tourist in Europe, the Euro's convenience is undeniable. That said, the Euro also debilitates vital economic checks and balances that once allowed for more healthy financial relationships within the European community.

In the past, had the Greek economy gone South for the winter, their government would simply have to bite the bullet, devalue its currency and thereby increase the attractiveness of domestic products in neighboring countries and abroad.

As a common currency, the Euro prohibits such independent economic measures and obliges productive members of the EU to be dragged down by its fiscally irresponsible counterparts. Given such exceptionally fragile circumstances as those induced by the deluge of bad debt currently inundating the global financial community, the EU could just as easily become a chain of dominoes that will simply topple one another into bankruptcy as each nation's Socialist squandering is pushed to the tipping point by futilely propping up their profligate neighbors.

This is the classic Ponzi scam writ large.

Baron Bodissey said...

RV --

This is very similar to the argument we're having on the Sweden thread.

Unfortunately, you are mired in normative terminology, whereas I prefer to remain in descriptive language as much as possible. I attempt to see what is currently the case, even though I don't always like it.

Germany is restrained from national self-assertion by the fear of "Nazism".

Other countries, organizations, and individuals are quick to shout "Nazi!" as soon as even the slightest sign of German nationalism appears. The same thing happens, of course, in other places, with the Nordic countries being the favorite targets. But Italian nationalists quickly become "fascists", too.

This is the way things are. It will remain that way until the current socio-political order changes, which may not be until the economic collapse occurs. And that could be in six months, but it could also take ten years or more. No one knows.

So yes, it's true that "any sane person doesn't care."

But there must be a lot of insane people out there, because one can whip entire populations into line by threatening them with the label "Nazi" or "racist".

That's just the way things are.

Change comes at the margins. In my line of work, I look at where a little push here and a little nudge there might be effective.

It would be nice if everyone started being sane, and rejected all this crap.

It would also be nice if I had a big silver stallion with wings that would fly me to the moon and back.

Which do you prefer, a fantasy world where everyone is sane and always agrees with you?

Or an unfortunately very flawed world, but the real one that we must all deal with?

rebelliousvanilla said...

Zenster, part of the problem is that monetary union is hard to do without fiscal union if you have a vast state apparatus and intrusive fiscal policy.

And devaluation isn't the solution, especially in the term of exports. Devaluing to sell abroad is basically selling at a discount. The bigger problem is punishing savers and the people who did the right choices for the mistakes of those who didn't. The real solution is to have a surplus in the summer to cover the winter deficit. Oh, and the EU would have been better off by letting Greece fail. If the ECB would have been against the bailout, I would have became a fan of the Euro.

Baron, I didn't use a normative approach since I didn't describe what it ought to be. I just presented the only two outcomes that are possible within the current paradigm. If I can turn off the life support of someone, I'm not using a normative approach if I say that if I do it, they'll die and if I don't, they'll continue to live. I didn't say that people will suddenly wake up tomorrow or described how things ought to be.

Agent Chameleon said...

When will Europeans wake up and realize that these center-right parties are just as dangerous as the overtly leftist parties. Merkel, Sarkozy, Cameron... will the peoples of Europe ever learn?

bartholomewscross said...

Baron, you wrote,

"I attempt to see what is currently the case, even though I don't always like it."

Right, but you didn't stop there. You also wrote,

"This will be true forever. The warrant never expires."

I don't see how you got from "the way things are" to "the way things shall forever be". I think that was RV's point.

Baron Bodissey said...

bartholomewscross --

Point taken. That was a bit of rhetorical excess on my part, intended to demonstrate the mindset of those who throw "Nazis!" at Germany on the slightest prestext. I'll try to curb my tendency towards verbal excess.

RV --

If you are not being normative, then what does "the problem is that I or any sane person doesn't care" mean?

Since many thousands or millions of people very obviously do care, does that mean that all those people are insane?

Or is it possible that ordinary, sane people are often easily swayed by social norms and the implicit threat of disapproval and ostracism?

A sane person of average intelligence is right to worry about being a "racist", because he sensibly understands the damage that such a label could do to him.

Your insistence that anybody "sane" would not hold such a position seems dismissive. It fails to do justice to the many millions of people who do not have your intelligence and ability to understand things, yet who are basically good, decent people.

A person can be "sane" and still come to disagree with you; they simply aren't as smart as you are.

Your evident intelligence is a great gift, and you are indeed fortunate. But it is no guarantee of sanity. That is an entirely different matter.

rebelliousvanilla said...

Sane can also mean marked by sound judgment. Holding illogical, if not straight idiotic beliefs ISN'T marked by sound judgment. Still, even with the mental illness meaning, it doesn't imply how things ought to be. Things don't have to be logical for people to believe in them. Even if I'd say that all those people are insane, I didn't say that they ought to be different. Actually, it's quite descriptive to describe them as illogical.

Oh, and another thing, if enough people wouldn't believe it, the whole paradigm would collapse.

Agent Chameleon said...

I would rather argue that those who see the big picture in regards to the West, like RV, show a great deal of wisdom. There's a lot of intelligent people who do not see the big picture or refuse to see it.

But I do agree that it's unfair to describe those who do not see things the way we do as insane. Most have been influenced via the educational system to think in terms of diversity, multiculturalism, political correctness, integration, etc.

bartholomewscross said...

Oh, OK, thanks for clearing it up Baron.

You later wrote, and I very much agree with it:

"Your insistence that anybody "sane" would not hold such a position seems dismissive. It fails to do justice to the many millions of people who do not have your intelligence and ability to understand things, yet who are basically good, decent people."

I couldn't agree more. It was only two or three years ago or so, I would have said some very ugly things about you, this blog, RV especially and everyone else on the Right. And I would have done it on moral conviction not necessarily logic.

Liberals aren't liberals because it makes sense, as RV implies. They're liberals because they think it's the right thing to be. That's not "insane", and it's not illogical. It's faith, and without it, life is impossible. Unfortunately, it's a false faith, which is why it does so much damage.

I only rejected that liberal faith once I came to see that it was inconsistent with true Christian belief. And, by the way, I've had the most success helping my fellow Christians reject the darkness of liberalism when I've shown them that same inconsistency. When forced to choose, most Christians will choose Christ, not Non-discrimination. And that is our hope.

Conservative Swede said...

The Baron wrote:
Other countries, organizations, and individuals are quick to shout "Nazi!" as soon as even the slightest sign of German nationalism appears.

Or if they would appoint a Chancellor with a mustache.

Baron Bodissey said...

RV —

Seeing those who are markedly less intelligent than yourself (and who therefore reach incorrect conclusions) as “insane” has an implied normative content, because sanity is defined by approximate conformance to societal norms. Thus you may be engaged in normative thinking without realizing it.

There’s nothing wrong with being prescriptive — let’s just be clear about it when we do it, so as to distinguish it from being descriptive.

A more insightful way of analyzing people who follow the current wisdom like sheep is to try to understand how they end up doing so, even if they are not insane or evil.

Doing that may require a recognition that not everyone has the good fortune to share your intellectual gifts.

It may demand that you find a bit of compassion within yourself for fellow humans who are stupider than you are.

You will be well-advised to examine in depth the behavior of people in the aggregate, en masse.

It would be useful to attempt to understand what motivates others, rather than to dismiss them as “insane” or “idiotic”.

You are obviously very bright, and you may be accustomed to run rings around your acquaintances when it comes to knowledge and quick thinking. But here you are among equals. You have come to a place where many people who join in the discussion have an intelligence that is equal to your own, and a few of them may even be smarter than you are. It ill-behooves you to resort to the glib and clever remarks that seem to comprise your usual repertoire. They are not worthy of your gifts.

I say this because we sometimes like to do analysis in depth here. It takes more time and effort, but in the end it is worth it.

Oh, and another thing, if enough people wouldn't believe it, the whole paradigm would collapse.

Now we’re getting somewhere!

You are exactly correct. The paradigm would collapse if enough people ceased to believe in it. The emperor would be naked.

But how do we get from here to there?

How can a handful of intelligent, well-educated, dedicated individuals hope to shift the paradigm, not to mention destroy it?

This is a question we grapple with constantly at Gates of Vienna. Almost four years ago readers began to answer it when they formed the 910 Group. Much more has happened since then.

I don’t pretend to have found the solution, nor even to have done very much towards finding it. But the attempt has made me certain of one thing: more than glib and clever talk is required if we are to have any say in what social mind-structures emerge after the collapse of the current paradigm.

Because the paradigm will collapse. There’s no doubt about it. Maybe not in my lifetime, but almost certainly within yours.

EscapeVelocity said...

bartholomewscross, Id be interested in your conversion for lack of a better term. Do you have a blog or some forum where we could discuss it? Im always interested in what brought people out of the Leftwing DreamState.

rebelliousvanilla said...

Baron, I understand why people think the way they do. And it's not just the propaganda in schools and media and them thinking that both are independent, free places of dispersing information while coming from a high trust society so believing it. This is different because in my country people knew that what they get is propaganda and that it's false while repeating it. But a lot of people believe it because it makes them FEEL GOOD about themselves to suffer. And here ConservativeSwede explains it fairly well, I think.

You can't make a paradigm shift without a revolution, civil war or the like. The cognitive dissonance of most people is simply not going to go away without them being made uncomfortable enough by the current paradigm to be more bothered about it than being through of themselves as evil for believing the wrong thing(considering that these are core values). The pain from keeping the current worldview must become bigger than the one that comes from renouncing it. Cognitive dissonance is a pain.

How you change the mental framework after it collapses? I think the Nuremberg trials are a great start - do them for liberals and leftists. Completely obliterate this type of thinking. But the right people must be in power after it collapses. In the end, I don't see it happen without violence.

4Symbols said...

In hoc signo vinces

@rebelliousvanilla,

"You can't make a paradigm shift without a revolution, civil war or the like."

This is exactly what has happened in the multi cult - neoliberal paradigm shift, there was no byronic hero to vilify, no bunting to burn in redemption no blood on the streets to write the warnings in the history books.

How can you exorcise or fight the invisible political shapeshifting evil that is neoliberalism which has infested the political will of the peoples of the West.

As I write Ed Miliband is moving the Labour party to the right of the ConDems in a live televised speech to the Fabian Society.

A prime example of neoliberal political shapeshifting.

rebelliousvanilla said...

4Symbols, it's more like social liberal, than neoliberal. For example, Milton Friedman is a neoliberal, but he wouldn't really approve of what governments do economics wise. I used neoliberal in the place of social liberal sometimes because I consider Friedman a classical liberal, but I don't know. Anyway, the multiculturalist regime didn't come without a war - ever heard of WW1, WW2, French revolution... I can go on. Each were steps in this direction and each were won by the left at the time.

costin said...

It looks like everything the aristocracy in Bussels is doing is towards speeding the way to the next paradigm shift.

It seems that they live in a paralel universe, the oposite of everything they wanna do happens, as a result of what they do, of corse.
The euro is failing, they want "an ever closer union", Brussels is set ablaze by muslims, they work on the EuroMed that will bring dozens of millions more muslims in Europe, the temperature is falling, they cry about global warming, the economy crumbles, they suggest more taxes.. I rarely see something that they do or decide that makes sense in the real world, but it all makes sense in the progresive mindset, the centralization of power.

As long as the progresive utopia will be the guiding principle, they will live in a paralel universe and things would only get worse.

And I hope things get bad fast because the sooner it happens, the more chances are that countries in Eastern Europe will remain relatively sane, untouched by the multiculti and politicaly correct bs. They are making their way in here also, but we have a long way to go. We have lots of problems, but at least we dont have a muslim problem, so I hope it happens before the EuroMed, or how is called now, starts full speed. So, let Germany bailout Greece, and then Portugal, Ireland, Spain, Italy. Its crashing anyway, let it crash faster and louder.

RV, the conditions for the violent revolution are in place, they just need some final adgustments.

rebelliousvanilla said...

costin, you forgot the UK! lol

Anyway, it's not like our government is doing sane things. Their cuts on welfare(retirement benefits) and public workers aren't enough, especially when we will have to pay the IMF back. But again, why should we do it? The message given by the Greek bailout is to be reckless because if you're fiscally responsible, you will bailout people. Otherwise you will get bailed out.

I don't give the dollar more than 5 years and the Euro more than 10-15 years, provided no violent revolution happens.

Baron Bodissey said...

RV —

But a lot of people believe it because it makes them FEEL GOOD about themselves to suffer.

You’re right about this, except for the last prepositional phrase. Yes, people believe it because it makes them feel good about themselves. But most people don’t suffer because of it. There are masochistic exceptions — the French kid who got beat up on the bus by enrichers, for example, and clung doggedly to his PC faith even so — but most people simply believe it and feel good about themselves, knowing that they hold the correct views, the beliefs commonly identified as “good” by the culture at large. They don’t usually suffer because of those views, but they feel good for having them.

In fact, when enough ordinary people begin to suffer because of the paradigm, the paradigm will begin to shift. It’s the “I was liberal until I was mugged” syndrome.

You can't make a paradigm shift without a revolution, civil war or the like.

I disagree with you here. Paradigms can change without revolution. It may be extraordinarily difficult and unlikely, but it can happen.

In this particular case, some sort of violence and mass suffering is all but inevitable, because the failure of the current fiscal regime will make 90% of the world’s wealth disappear in a relatively short time. The welfare state will cease to function, and it’s hard to see how that can occur without mass misery and death.

The paradigm will shift at some point during this process — before, during, or after -- because the total failure of the existing paradigm will become apparent. Literal bankruptcy will force moral and intellectual bankruptcy upon the long-standing assumptions that underlie the welfare state.

But a paradigm shift can occur in advance of the catastrophe. You talk about the dominant paradigm as if it were a natural process, like the weather or a volcano, rather than a human process. The current paradigm, which was created centuries ago and then later elaborated and adapted by Marxists and so on, was constructed by a relative handful of intelligent and influential people over two or three generations.

To insist that the paradigm will not and cannot change except by catastrophic violence is a cop-out. It allows you not to have to contribute anything to the change, since you have cognized change as beyond deliberate human control. Your assumption absolves you from all responsibility.

It’s possible that you believe this because it allows you to feel good about yourself — you’re smart, you see what others fail to see, but nothing can be changed, so you don’t have to do anything.

This lets you sit back and analyze what happens around you, and make cynical and ironic observations about the situation, but without any obligation to be a part of the change.

However, change does lie within the reach of human capabilities; it is just very, very difficult to achieve.

It may in fact not occur without an epochal catastrophe.

But it might. And it can only happen if we, the people who are alive now, decide not to take the easy way out and sit on the sidelines. Sitting on the sidelines and kvetching are what intellectuals are notorious for, but they are not the only options open to us.

The possibility of change will especially require intelligent people in your generational cohort, young people who are only now becoming aware of what is coming to the world shortly — certainly before they reach middle age.

I’m not going to be around much longer, so my ability to affect events is limited. My scope for action is quite constricted by the time that remains to me.

You, on the other hand, have a choice. You can continue to sit back and make trenchant observations, to lol and :-D at those who are not as brilliant as you are.

Or you can decide to invest your impressive brainpower in the paradigmatic process, and become part of the change.

It’s really up to you.

costin said...

RV, listen to Baron, he is a wise man

costin said...

lol.. Baron, it's true, the idea that you need a violent revolution to change the paradigm can be an excuse for not doing anything, if you realise a thing or 2.

As I see it, there aren't too many chanches large scale riots can be avoided in Europe, with or without the involvment of gifted ones.

It's more of a moral duty to get involved, but at the same time it has practical consequences: even if it doesnt avert the coming chaos, it prepares them to be the leaders in the world after the paradigm shift.

Another benefit is that it doenst let them sink into depression as the world crumbles arround them and they sit making faces.

rebelliousvanilla said...

Baron, since my reply got pretty big, I posted it on my blog - here. I hate blogger for it's word limit. :(

bartholomewscross said...

Hey EV,

Sure, I'd be happy to. There's a lot that went into it, but the decisive moment came after a Bible study, actually, reading Galatians 3:28. "There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus."

I used to think this meant race, sex and class were supposed to be meaningless for Christians. I was an avowed anti-racist and had been sympathetic to feminism and even homosexuality, though I knew about Romans 1.

My understanding of Galatians had actually caused me to doubt Romans 1 because I couldn't understand why it should matter which sex you were attracted to. After all, if we Christians are no longer male nor female, what does it matter if two Christians happen to share the same "sex" any more than a different "class" or "race"? Doesn't Galatians mean that none of that matters and we're all just Christians and nothing else?

During this Bible study, I realized that Galatians doesn't mean that at all, and it doesn't contradict Romans. Romans was speaking about how we live here on earth. Galatians was speaking about how we exist within Christ. Since Christ was clear that his kingdom is not of this earth, we shouldn't be surprised that some basic things (like race, class and sex) might look pretty different in Christ's kingdom than they do on earth. In fact, Jesus said there won't even be marriage in Heaven, though he was hardly against it here on earth.

The universal, raceless, sexless, classless existence of the perfected Christian can and does exist, but solely within Christ. If the Gospel is true, it must be true for anyone, regardless of their race, sex or class. But it just doesn't follow that therefore race, sex and class no longer exist, which had been my error. While on earth, Christ could easily have set that kind of kingdom up, if that's what he'd had in mind.

Once I realized that, all hesitation about Romans 1 vanished. I recognized homosexuality as a sin against God's order on earth, and I started having serious questions about feminism and anti-racism.

I know what I've written probably seems stupidly obvious, but it was earth-shattering for me. It took months of prayer, reading and contemplation to sort out what was really right and wrong and what was liberal heresy.

It's also why I know revolution would fail here in the heartland. This is a battle for the heart, not the mind. Sincere Christians will die to defeat you as long as they belief the falsehood of liberalism. Our battle is not against flesh and blood but against the rulers and principalities of this present darkness. We must lovingly show our fellow Christians why liberalism is false, and be patient with them as they sort the chaff from the wheat, so to speak, in their moral understandings.

bartholomewscross said...

Baron and Dymphna,

I think the post above is well over 500 words. Sorry about that. I certainly won't be offended if you delete it.

Baron Bodissey said...

b-cross --

Don't worry about it. It's only a rough guideline. I went over it recently myself.

Rollory said...

"To insist that the paradigm will not and cannot change except by catastrophic violence is a cop-out. "

I'm pretty sure that banging my head against this brick wall is only going to hurt my head, particularly as it already hurts from the banging I've been doing, so I stopped. I'm also pretty sure that bus coming up at 60 mph is not physically capable of stopping in time, but will make a hole in the wall for me, of some sort. This will probably involve people on the bus getting killed.

I'm not going to try to step in front of a bus.

Conservative Swede said...

Baron,

RV is essentially right when she says that Westerners "FEEL GOOD about themselves to suffer". However, English not being her first language, she made a poor choice of words. It is not suffering in general, but the feeling of guilt that is so very dear to Westerners. Especially to Protestants the collective feeling of guilt is extremely precious and valuable, and something that they as a group always strive for, and yes it makes them feel very good (group-hug yummy in the tummy as well as a fat shot of sanctimoniousness).

Paradigms can change without revolution. It may be extraordinarily difficult and unlikely, but it can happen.

Do you have any historical examples? I cannot think of any. I think RV is right, the sort of paradigm shift we stand before requires a revolution, civil war or the like.

To insist that the paradigm will not and cannot change except by catastrophic violence is a cop-out.

Hardly so. If it takes a revolution or a civil war our responsibility is to arm ourselves and prepare for the fight. I think it is the people who are in denial about this as the expected outcome that do not take responsibility.

Your assumption absolves you from all responsibility.

It’s possible that you believe this because it allows you to feel good about yourself

Baron, are you aware of how these statements easily bounce back upon yourself?

In general the coming SHTF scenario hardly absolves anyone of responsibility -- to the very contrary! It just means that we have much more to do. But most people are comfortable city-dwellers who are indoctrinated that only by being a homo politicus they are doing something.

What we need to do to be prepared is to make sure we are self-supporting (how will we get food when the market breaks down?), that we can defend ourselves and our loved ones (get a gun!). Look over your whole life situation: don't live in a city, don't live alone in the country side, etc. Network with the people, make sure to know who are real friends. All in all, to become self-sufficient in all aspects. That's responsibility! (and in the very old-fashioned way)

Baron Bodissey said...

Conservative Swede --

Good to see you here! At long last, a worthy debating opponent!

It’s nice for a change to argue with someone who has more reasoning ability than a sofa cushion.

Especially to Protestants the collective feeling of guilt is extremely precious and valuable, and something that they as a group always strive for, and yes it makes them feel very good (group-hug yummy in the tummy as well as a fat shot of sanctimoniousness).

You must hang with a different breed of Protestant than the ones I know. This has not been my personal experience.

Do you have any historical examples? I cannot think of any.

Yes. The great hollowing out of Western institutions that was accomplished by the Frankfurt School. Rebellious and I have argued this over at her blog. She ascribes the success of the Frankfurt School to the wars, but I don’t agree. They succeeded in places that had no wars just as well as they did in the countries of the victors and the vanquished.

In my opinion, WW2 actually inhibited the work of the Frankfurt School. It revived patriotism and duty and love of country, and they had to work that much harder after the war to regain lost ground.

If it hadn’t been for Hitler, 1968 might have happened in 1956.

If it takes a revolution or a civil war our responsibility is to arm ourselves and prepare for the fight.

I have no argument with you here. It’s necessary to prepare for the worst, even while we fight a rearguard action trying to prevent it. Stock up on gold, guns, and ammo.

Baron, are you aware of how these statements easily bounce back upon yourself?

For God’s sake, man, of course I do! Do you take me for a fool?

Network with the people, make sure to know who are real friends. All in all, to become self-sufficient in all aspects. That's responsibility! (and in the very old-fashioned way)

Amen, brother.

Conservative Swede said...

Baron,

At long last, a worthy debating opponent!

Just quickly before I go to bed, I'm just saying: dito!
(You have to consider that I have tried to have some sort of discussion with Richard Hoste over at Mangan's today).

kritisk_borger said...

Politics for hardened politicians aren’t necessarily about being right or wrong, but more about being clever and smart. A politician’s ultimate goal is power, period. I believe that the majority of the career politicians only toe the party line because they believe that it’s in their own best interests to do so. I’m not even sure that the majority of them believe in their own policies, but they play along because they want to rise in the system.

They also do what is expected of them, or rather they do what they themselves believe is expected of them to remain in power and that is as far as it goes. Any politician who diverges too much from the official line won’t make it up through the hierarchy, but rather be removed from their positions fairly quickly and that’s counterproductive for anyone who craves power.

I remember a politician from the Labour Party in Norway who made a heartfelt guarantee to a journalist that three immigrant youths who killed two Norwegian bouncers would be deported the minute they had served their prison sentences, after hearing about the gruesome murder from said journalist. He did however ‘moderate’ his own personal views the next day, and he no longer made any guarantees about deportation of these youths. The higher ups in the party had obviously had a word with him.

I’m sure that there are a lot of politicians in the EU who wishes to ‘cut Greece’ loose, and I’m sure that secretly they’d probably also like to introduce tougher immigration policies. But the ‘environment’ that they currently work in doesn’t condone such political views. Anything could however happen in the future.

Another question is what would really happen if the EU was abolished? Would there be a power vacuum in Europe or would the brains behind the EU come up with another way of governing the continent? I think they would, people who’re that hungry for power don’t easily let it slip away. A revolution would probably only occur if people weren’t able to get the necessities in life such as food and roof over their heads. I don’t think people would start a revolution just because the EU decided to pack it in.

Zenster said...

kritisk_borger: Politics for hardened politicians aren’t necessarily about being right or wrong, but more about being clever and smart. A politician’s ultimate goal is power, period. I believe that the majority of the career politicians only toe the party line because they believe that it’s in their own best interests to do so. I’m not even sure that the majority of them believe in their own policies, but they play along because they want to rise in the system.

They also do what is expected of them, or rather they do what they themselves believe is expected of them to remain in power and that is as far as it goes. Any politician who diverges too much from the official line won’t make it up through the hierarchy, but rather be removed from their positions fairly quickly and that’s counterproductive for anyone who craves power.


For once you are making crystal clear sense. This is not meant to be a backhanded compliment. I rarely agree with you and it is a relief to see that you have, at least, this basic understanding of just how thoroughly corrupted the notion of public service has become.

Career politicians are killing many, if not most, of the countries they supposedly serve.

rebelliousvanilla said...

I agree with kritisk on this one too. Basically, politicians are representatives of their own party, not the people. In my country it's quite funny because this man nominated for PM had approval ratings of 55%. Only about 30% of the politicians voted for him, the others saying that the way people voted showed they don't approve of the guy aka their parties don't approve of the guy. The way I'd solve this is make career politicians a thing of the past. You have a limit to two terms and you get the average wage of the economy as a civil servant when you're an elected official.