The Deep Thinkers of the Left

 

LeBron James is the most prominent athlete in the NBA – a multi-national organization that generates billions in revenue.  The NBA entertains sports fans all over the world, and is a powerful force in the world of entertainment and sports.  Mr. James is widely considered to be one of the best players of all time.  He has also become very outspoken in the realms of politics, social justice, economic equity, and so on.  Some have questioned why his ability to play basketball would lead him to view himself as qualified to speak on other matters that have nothing to do with sports.  Mr. James responds to his critics, “I will not just shut up and dribble … I get to sit up here and talk about what’s really important.”

While it may be true that basketball is not as important as the topics of worldly significance that he often speaks on, this does not mean that he has any particular expertise in these fields.  But he continues to share his views on the matters of the day.  He clearly views himself as above his occupation (playing basketball), and above the organization that made him famous (the NBA).  He apparently believes that his brilliance on the basketball court translates into brilliance in many and varied other unrelated fields.

Prince Harry is one of the most prominent members of the British Royal Family – an organization of enormous historical significance that is closely followed by millions of people all over the world.  He has been world-famous since the day he was born, and his membership in this exclusive club, due simply to his birth, has given him opportunities that most people could only dream of.  He has also become very outspoken in the realms of politics, social justice, economic equity, and so on.  Some have questioned why his royal birth would lead him to view himself as qualified to speak on other matters that have nothing to do with, um, with his area of expertise.  Whatever that is.  Prince Harry recently announced that he is writing his memoirs, which may seem odd for a 36-year-old who has done little in his life other than be rich and privileged.  But he explains:

“I’m writing this not as the prince I was born but as the man I have become. I’ve worn many hats over the years, both literally and figuratively, and my hope is that in telling my story—the highs and lows, the mistakes, the lessons learned—I can help show that no matter where we come from, we have more in common than we think,” he said in a press release. “I’m deeply grateful for the opportunity to share what I’ve learned over the course of my life so far and excited for people to read a firsthand account of my life that’s accurate and wholly truthful.”

So humanity will soon be blessed with the insight of a 36-year-old English Prince.  He clearly views himself as above his occupation (being a prince), and above the organization that made him famous (the British Royal Family).  He apparently believes that his birthright as a prince translates into insights that are worth sharing with people around the world.

Pope Francis is the leader of one of the most historically important organizations on the planet – The Catholic Church.  He has also become very outspoken in the realms of politics, social justice, climate science, economic equity, and so on.  Some have questioned why his occupation as a religious leader would lead him to view himself as qualified to speak on other matters that have nothing to do with Christianity.  But he continues to use his position to promote leftist politics.

He speaks on religion too but spends an extraordinary amount of time on topics that would seem to be beyond his job in The Catholic Church.  He clearly views himself as above his occupation (Pope of The Catholic Church), and above the organization that made him famous (The Catholic Church).  He apparently believes that his position as a religious leader translates into brilliance in many and varied other unrelated fields.

A basketball player, a prince, and a Pope would seem to have little in common.  But these three have one prominent quality in common – they are all devout leftists.

Many leftists seem to believe that they have a deep understanding of topics on which they have little apparent expertise.  PJ O’Rourke touched on this topic with the great quote, “I’m not a liberal, so I have a poor grasp of stuff I don’t know anything about.”

This really does seem to be a common trait among leftists.  LeBron James.  Prince Harry.  Pope Francis.  Greta Thunberg.  John Kerry.  David Hogg.  Al Gore.  AOC.  Nikole Hannah-Jones.  Leonardo DiCaprio.  And on and on and on.

This says a lot about leftist leaders.

But I think it says more about leftist voters.  If you listen to basketball players, teenagers, actors, and so on as voices of authority on, well, on anything at all, then you must be a leftist.

And you must be a fool.

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  1. EJHill Podcaster
    EJHill
    @EJHill

    I demand my privacy! said the man who announced he is writing his memoirs…

    • #1
  2. Kevin Schulte Member
    Kevin Schulte
    @KevinSchulte

    The memoirs are about the cash. Full stop. He is trading on something he didn’t make or earn. He is a locust.

    A wise man would never care what the locust that is consuming what his predecessors preserved and nurtured thinks. Especially a young locust.  RAID !!!!!

    • #2
  3. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    Harry can certainly hold forth on being a prince with far more authority than I’ll ever have. In addition, he can tell me all about calling his own grandmother a racist. I never did that either.

    • #3
  4. Clifford A. Brown Contributor
    Clifford A. Brown
    @CliffordBrown

    These are deep thinkers on the level of Jack Handey:

    • #4
  5. Franco Member
    Franco
    @Franco

    Brilliant juxtapositions. So easy to pick on LeBron and Celebs, but it’s equally true with royalty and papal appointees. Brave, but not a difficult argument to defend. 
    One’s sense of importance- valid in the field that made them important figures, bleeds into their entire view of themselves.

    We all want to play God. We think we have solutions. We all care but have an inflated view of ourselves. Imagine being …the Pope! I’m amazed he hasn’t gone farther. Who tells the pontiff he’s wrong? 

    We are,  like it or not, influenced by those around us, and if ‘everybody’ is telling us we are great then how should we expect any other result ?

    • #5
  6. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Time for this again:

     

    • #6
  7. KevinKrisher Coolidge
    KevinKrisher
    @KevinKrisher

    I get angry every time I read about Greta Thunberg. I am not angry at her. I am angry at the adults who are egging her on.

    She’s just a kid, for heaven’s sake. No reasonable person could believe that she knows anything about climate change or other very complex and speculative subjects. But the adults around her keep applauding her outrageous tantrums.

    She reminds me of the sideshow geeks that used to be seen at county fairs. They were usually intellectually disabled people or far-gone alcoholics who would bite the heads off live chickens and do other grotesque stunts. Their “audiences” would cheer them on and throw change.

    Greta Thunberg’s reception at the UN marked the lowest point yet for that organization, which was once a hope for reason and dignity.

    • #7
  8. Jim McConnell Member
    Jim McConnell
    @JimMcConnell

    Another great post, Doctor. You have a rare gift of getting at the heart of the subject.

    • #8
  9. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    “Deep Thinkers Of The Left” is one of those empty books at the library, right?  Next to “Job Opportunities Created By The Poor.”

    • #9
  10. Henry Castaigne Member
    Henry Castaigne
    @HenryCastaigne

    When I was a child and young adult, my optometrist was Dr. Bernard Vodnoy. I remember his energy, curiosity, and exuberance. He had contracted polio a few months before the vaccine was available, and he was confined to a wheelchair—except it did not seem like confinement. He had rigged ramps through his office and the speed with which he moved with his wheelchair left the impression that it was his version of a skateboard. He was entrepreneurial in attitude and action, founding a small firm tomake visual therapy equipment.

    I remember him being conventionally liberal, wanting the government to protect us from a host of evils. But I also remember one conversation in which he became quite animated about the ignorance and stupidity of government regulations related to optometry.

    Government regulations sound plausible in areas where we know little and have thought less. But usually those who know an area well can tell us of the unexpected harmful consequences of seemingly plausible and well-intentioned regulations. As a result, the same person often advocates government regulations in areas in which they are ignorant and opposes them in areas where they have knowledge. I call this the “Vodnoy Paradox.”

    I wish I had wrote the previous passage. It was actually written by Arthur M. Diamond jr. It is the best example of Robert Conquest’s first law of politics that I know of. For those of you who haven’t heard of the law, it states that, “Everyone is conservative about what he knows best.”

    • #10
  11. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Henry Castaigne (View Comment):

    When I was a child and young adult, my optometrist was Dr. Bernard Vodnoy. I remember his energy, curiosity, and exuberance. He had contracted polio a few months before the vaccine was available, and he was confined to a wheelchair—except it did not seem like confinement. He had rigged ramps through his office and the speed with which he moved with his wheelchair left the impression that it was his version of a skateboard. He was entrepreneurial in attitude and action, founding a small firm tomake visual therapy equipment.

    I remember him being conventionally liberal, wanting the government to protect us from a host of evils. But I also remember one conversation in which he became quite animated about the ignorance and stupidity of government regulations related to optometry.

    Government regulations sound plausible in areas where we know little and have thought less. But usually those who know an area well can tell us of the unexpected harmful consequences of seemingly plausible and well-intentioned regulations. As a result, the same person often advocates government regulations in areas in which they are ignorant and opposes them in areas where they have knowledge. I call this the “Vodnoy Paradox.”

    I wish I had wrote the previous passage. It was actually written by Arthur M. Diamond jr. It is the best example of Robert Conquest’s first law of politics that I know of. For those of you who haven’t heard of the law, it states that, “Everyone is conservative about what he knows best.”

    Also ties to that “amnesia” term which I can never remember (ar! ar!) about reading/seeing/hearing stuff in the media that you know isn’t true because you were there or something, but still trusting everything else they “report.”

    • #11
  12. Bishop Wash Member
    Bishop Wash
    @BishopWash

    Dr. Bastiat: While it may be true that basketball is not as important as the topics of worldly significance that he often speaks on, this does not mean that he has any particular expertise in these fields.  But he continues to share his views on the matters of the day.  He clearly views himself as above his occupation (playing basketball), and above the organization that made him famous (the NBA).  He apparently believes that his brilliance on the basketball court translates into brilliance in many and varied other unrelated fields.

    You’re not impressed with someone who only reads the first few pages of a book?

    • #12
  13. tigerlily Member
    tigerlily
    @tigerlily

    Percival (View Comment):

    Harry can certainly hold forth on being a prince with far more authority than I’ll ever have. In addition, he can tell me all about calling his own grandmother a racist. I never did that either.

    I just realized, Harry joined Obama in the “My Grandma is a racist” club, didn’t he?

    • #13
  14. DonG (2+2=5. Say it!) Coolidge
    DonG (2+2=5. Say it!)
    @DonG

    Dr. Bastiat: Pope Francis … has also become very outspoken in the realms of politics, social justice, climate science, economic equity, and so on. 

    That’s OK.  He is supposed to have opinions and lead the faithful.  Unfortunately, his opinions seem to be based more on South American socialism and not Catholicism.   He wants to be popular with the “swells”, but his job is to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable. 

    If Leftism is viewed as a Maoist type cult, their fawning over celebrities who in turn fawn over the cult makes perfect sense. 

    • #14
  15. Nohaaj Coolidge
    Nohaaj
    @Nohaaj

    KevinKrisher (View Comment):
    Greta Thunberg’s reception at the UN marked the lowest point yet for that organization, which was once a hope for reason and dignity.

    The UN was founded shortly after the conclusion of WWII.  My perception of the UN is that it lost the facade of being a place where reason and dignity might flourish not long after. That tarnish was slightly buffed by Nikki Haley, but the corrosion, the full outright corruption has strangled that brief attempt.  The UN is (COC)

    • #15
  16. Bishop Wash Member
    Bishop Wash
    @BishopWash

    Nohaaj (View Comment):

    KevinKrisher (View Comment):
    Greta Thunberg’s reception at the UN marked the lowest point yet for that organization, which was once a hope for reason and dignity.

    The UN was founded shortly after the conclusion of WWII. My perception of the UN is that it lost the facade of being a place where reason and dignity might flourish not long after. That tarnish was slightly buffed by Nikki Haley, but the corrosion, the full outright corruption has strangled that brief attempt. The UN is (COC)

    Sane Jonah had a good idea for the freedom loving countries to get together and build a UN replacement. Having countries with massive human rights abuses sitting on the human rights committee is farcical.

    • #16
  17. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Bishop Wash (View Comment):

    Nohaaj (View Comment):

    KevinKrisher (View Comment):
    Greta Thunberg’s reception at the UN marked the lowest point yet for that organization, which was once a hope for reason and dignity.

    The UN was founded shortly after the conclusion of WWII. My perception of the UN is that it lost the facade of being a place where reason and dignity might flourish not long after. That tarnish was slightly buffed by Nikki Haley, but the corrosion, the full outright corruption has strangled that brief attempt. The UN is (COC)

    Sane Jonah had a good idea for the freedom loving countries to get together and build a UN replacement. Having countries with massive human rights abuses sitting on the human rights committee is farcical.

    Ahhh, Sane Jonah.  Those were the days!

    • #17
  18. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    KevinKrisher (View Comment):
    Greta Thunberg’s reception at the UN marked the lowest point yet for that organization, which was once a hope for reason and dignity.

    Did they at least pronounce her name right?  Toon-Berry?

    • #18
  19. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    tigerlily (View Comment):

    Percival (View Comment):

    Harry can certainly hold forth on being a prince with far more authority than I’ll ever have. In addition, he can tell me all about calling his own grandmother a racist. I never did that either.

    I just realized, Harry joined Obama in the “My Grandma is a racist” club, didn’t he?

    He sat there like a mope while it was done in his presence, unless they edited out his spirited defense of Elizabeth. Which he showed no inclination of making after the fact.

    • #19
  20. Guruforhire Member
    Guruforhire
    @Guruforhire

    Price Harry won’t be the first or last british royal to turn nazi and run off into the wilderness.

    • #20
  21. Bob Thompson Member
    Bob Thompson
    @BobThompson

    I won’t employ any tone that makes my words sound like those who consider some individuals “deplorable”. Every individual has a right to an opinion and our Constitution guarantees that against infringement by government. We have laws also designed to give the less powerful some protection, or at least some options, when abused by monopoly power. It is shameful to see the unbridled support given to actors such as those highlighted in the OP on major public platforms (professional basketball and the British Royal Family) while the more ordinary common folks are denied expression in public and social media. 

    The less than expert views of LeBron James and Prince Harry are not of concern. The tragedy is the denial of dissemination of facts on public and social media to those who listen to them. 

    • #21
  22. KevinKrisher Coolidge
    KevinKrisher
    @KevinKrisher

    Sadly, this is not a new phenomenon. As Socrates observed in 399 BC:

    “At last I went to the artisans, … and I was sure that they knew many fine things. And in this I was not mistaken, for they did know many things of which I was ignorant, and in this they certainly were wiser than I was. But I observed that even the good artisans fell into the same error as the poets: Because they were good workmen they thought that they also knew all sorts of high matters, and this defect in them overshadowed their wisdom.”

    • #22
  23. cdor Member
    cdor
    @cdor

    OK, you definitely threw me a curve, Doc. I thought for sure this was leading up to an hilarious punch line, starting with, “A basketball player, a prince, and a Pope walked into a bar…”. Instead, it’s just a sad story of leftist hubris. That story just goes on and on and on.

    • #23
  24. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    Dang, I knew I should have finished that blog post on the Left’s synoptic delusion!

     

    • #24
  25. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    Fortunately for Catholics, we only submit in obedience to Francis’s pontifications (see what I did there?) on faith and morals. What he says on climate and economics is clearly outside his competence and can be safely ignored. Which I regularly do.

    • #25
  26. Michael Brehm Coolidge
    Michael Brehm
    @MichaelBrehm

    KevinKrisher (View Comment):
    She reminds me of the sideshow geeks that used to be seen at county fairs. They were usually intellectually disabled people or far-gone alcoholics who would bite the heads off live chickens and do other grotesque stunts. Their “audiences” would cheer them on and throw change.

    Did you hear that Joe Biden tried his hand at being a circus geek after his stint as a lifeguard? Unfortunately, he never really cottoned to fundamentals of the job. “Head first, Joe, HEAD! FIRST!” the barker would yell, and there Joe would be, perched there on his hay bale, sweating in his overalls, trying to shove the chicken’s entire body into his mouth. With all the squawking and feathers flying he could never manage to get more than the tail or a leg of the poor bird in there. The bearded woman offered pointers, but she couldn’t help him, and neither could the illustrated man. Every night for a week, the carnies had to close the curtain prematurely on his act and issue refunds to the embarrassed onlookers. Naturally, the carnival had to let him go, so he joined the only profession that would take in a geek who was too slow to perform his duties. And the rest, as they say, is history!   

    • #26
  27. Full Size Tabby Member
    Full Size Tabby
    @FullSizeTabby

    Fallen human nature is that we want to be our own gods – all knowing, wise, and in control. When a person is put on a pedestal for excellence in one endeavor, it is easy for that person to believe that pedestal is more than it really is, and grow the person’s inclination to god-like thinking. The less attached that person is to the one true G-d, the easier it is for that person on the pedestal to believe his or her god-like self importance. “Leftist” policies are a natural product of the belief that a person has his or her own god-like qualities of knowledge, wisdom, and control. “Leftist” policies assume the people promoting them are all-knowing, all-wise, and fully in control of all surrounding circumstances.   

    I understand why people who have excelled in one area think that entitles them to pronounce in areas unrelated to their area of excellence. What I don’t understand is why other people listen to them. 

    [Caution: The above philosophy from a person with degrees in engineering and in law, and who never took a philosophy class. But I have spent most of a lifetime trying to better follow G-d.]

    • #27
  28. Bob Thompson Member
    Bob Thompson
    @BobThompson

    Post titles that are oxymorons should be a CofC violation.

    • #28
  29. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    Guruforhire (View Comment):

    Price Harry won’t be the first or last british royal to turn nazi and run off into the wilderness.

    The last one to do it had more panache.

    • #29
  30. EHerring Coolidge
    EHerring
    @EHerring

    I will not just shut up and dribble … I get to sit up here and talk about what’s really important.”

    Dribble, drivel. Spelling matters. 

    • #30