Misanthropy and Intellectuals: The Left is a Mopey, Motley Mess
Larry Koler recently wrote an excellent post asking whether or not we are having an intellectual debate with the Left. Of course, they don't want one.
I keep thinking that the problem with politics in America is that those who listen to NPR nod their heads to the received knowledge of the cognitive elite. Meanwhile, on the street level, I have found that arguing politics with people is like trying to talk to the Obamaphone woman.
I cringe at the idea of making a multi-pointed argument for free markets to Obamaphone woman. But, really, that's what we are up against. I know a Bronx cheer rises from the stands if I mention the dude's name, but I think the best answer to this was expressed by Bill O'Reilly when he came out with the pop book "Who's Looking Out For You?" I know the man runs away from being a conservative as much as possible. but I think this was as sage advice as anyone can deliver in a one-sentence polemic. Ignore the content of the book written by O'Reilly and his ego. Just focus on the concept inherent in the title.
I've read my Friedman, Hayek, and Von Mises. I can weave a tale of why Bain Capital is good for the country. But it takes some math and charts and abstract thinking, none of which is worth getting into with someone jumping up and down and shouting about "Banksters."
Here is how my arguments with the Left go:
Lefty with bony fingers and amber beads in NPR monotone: "But surely you must agree, that if Adam Lanza or Jared Loughner or James Holmes did not have access to guns, all those people would be alive?"
I don't answer this by carrying on about the need to protect ourselves from redcoated jackboots. The simple question is: "who are you trusting to carry out your plan? The same entity that runs the TSA and cannot deliver the mail? Do you support police going door to door in the inner city and public housing to strip people down naked and remove their guns? Weren't you just on about how Gitmo is an outrage, but you want this?"
Maybe it's my Libertarian twitch, but to me the answer is obvious. Of course it would have been better if Adam Lanza/Jared Loughtner/James Holmes were institutionalized or didn't have guns. But that's not a thing.
The simple response as to why government is not the answer to the problems we have is because it is so bad at solving them. That is why our founders knew that government was better off being limited rather than expanded. And if Obamaphone people or NPRniks are willing to listen to that (they never are though -- one shouldn't expect too much), I can also make the case that the government has caused many of the problems we have, even inadvertently.
The problem at the heart of the Leftist world view is misanthropy. They roll in it like a dog with a fresh pile of offal. The elite 1% Harvard Professors who get elected to the Senate lecture the Obamaphone people that the "system is rigged." And they believe it, too. How many Obamaphone voters, if you were to go down the line with issues, would believe that the CIA killed JFK, that the CIA invented Crack, AIDS, and cancer? That we don't know who was behind 9/11, UFOs, etc? If you don't realize the number is disturbingly high, you don't know the low information Obamaphone voters the way I do.
And let us not forget that our Harvard-educated overlords hardly have better arguments than the Obamaphone woman. The problem with making intricate arguments is that NPRniks cover their ears and pretend not to hear us. That same Harvard-educated Senator had dotty liberals swooning like bobbysoxers because of a viral video making an angry case that government should keep paying for roads, firemen, and schools, as if these things are somehow au courant.
I have lot of abstract reasons why I believe in the Second Amendment. But the answer to a shouting, frothing Liberal pointing a bony finger in my chest while her amber beads bounce in counterpoint rhythm to her rage, really comes down to pointing out that the Powers-That-Be are clueless, feckless, and corrupt. And she, the bony-fingered Liberal NPRnik and her Obamaphone praeteorians, spend all their energy complaining about exactly that point.
The question I pose to anyone is "who has your best interest in mind? You or the government bureaucrat in charge of your case?" I know this also hangs out to dry institutions that conservatives usually defend, such as the police, firemen, or large banks and corporations. But my attitude has always been the same towards them as well. How effectively do you expect the police to be your personal security guard? Do you expect the fire department to be so effective that you don't need to keep a fire extinguisher in your kitchen? The same goes for banks and corporations. The Tea Party was motivated by the bailouts in 2009 and their remnants should not forget it.
Who is looking out for you? Who fails us, consistently, more than government planners? Yes, GM lives. And they make Volts. Their plans for our future? Windmills and billion-dollar trains to nowhere. How do they want to protect us? The kabuki comedy routine that is known as the TSA. I'm not worried about what nickel and dime government baubles the Powers-That-Be dangle in front of us like so many shiny keys. I'm suggesting we remind people who do things as simple as keeping their own budget and packing their own kids' lunches that they have the power to figure this out on their own.