Tag: Socialism

Notre Dame, Charity and Socialism

 

This article from the New York Post on the rebuilding of Notre Dame Cathedral is fascinating.  It seems that 90% of the donations to rebuild the burned Church are coming from America and small French donor, with the French government making up the rest of the giving.  French billionaires pledged a lot of money, but none of it has been given yet.

This does not surprise me; one of the problems with a large State and a State religion is that people lose their sense of personal responsibility for their fellow man and when the mentality is, “the State does that” and the individual is free to ignore his obligations.

Latin American Death Squads!

 

You have likely heard for most of your life, from the ever-more-leftist universities and media organs, “Latin American death squads” are a tool of right-wing dictators and military governments trying to suppress the people’s champions, the leftist, progressive, forces. You have also heard Democrats consistently defend leftist regimes in Latin America. You will recall that a Democrat-controlled Congress prohibited funding support to the “Contras” in opposition to the socialist Sandinista government in Nicaragua (a crew that is now back in power through the ballot box).

You will also remember that the New York Times suppressed knowledge of the Holodomor and the Holocaust, as each unfolded. So, it is quite shocking, and refreshing, to see the New York Times publish “Venezuela Forces Killed Thousands, Then Covered It Up, U.N. Says.”

Special Action Forces described by witnesses as “death squads” killed 5,287 people in 2018 and another 1,569 by mid-May of this year, in what are officially termed by the Venezuelan government “Operations for the Liberation of the People,” United Nations investigators reported.

Buddhism, Secularism, and Socialism

 

Two weeks ago, I decided it was time to give away the meditation mats and cushions that I had originally purchased for the meditation group I led. (As many of you know, I practiced Buddhism for over 20 years, and broke with my teacher several years ago. I also re-discovered my love for Judaism, and that is where I find myself now.)

I remembered that there was a Zen center about an hour away from here, and wrote them an email, asking if they would like my cushions and mats. They were delighted. When the representative came to pick them up, he asked if I knew a fellow at their center. As it happens, this fellow, a very nice man, had practiced at the same center in San Diego where I had practiced. We’ve agreed to have a phone conversation.

In the meantime, that contact stirred up many painful memories about my former teacher and my relationship with her. The teacher/student relationship is an intimate one, and we had known each other for many years. Unfortunately, the deeper I explored my practice and pursued my path to becoming a teacher, the more toxic the relationship became. Ultimately her demands were more than I was willing to meet, and I ended it.

Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America praise Texas Governor Greg Abbott for a series of conservative legislative victories. They also react as YouTube admits it is suppressing what it deems “borderline” content. And in a double crazy martini, they discuss Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (literally) running from Republican competition while reportedly entertaining a future primary challenge to either Sen. Chuck Schumer or Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand.

Kamala Harris’ Salami Socialism

 

One of the most frightening developments in the run-up to the 2020 presidential election is the Democratic flirtation with socialist ideals. One recent manifestation of this unfortunate trend is the recent proposal from Senator Kamala Harris (CA) to have a vast government takeover of employment markets in the name of gender equity. In an age in which the phrase “diversity and inclusion” is on the lips of every business and university, she announces, without a shred of evidence, her deep conviction that labor markets consistently and systematically discriminate against women by failing to offer them equal wages for equal work. Her purpose is to hold “corporations accountable for pay inequality in America.” How? Through “the most aggressive equal pay proposal in history.”

The proposal goes downhill from there. The first question that one has to ask is why competitive labor markets need any form of wage regulation to protect women in the first place. Sure, there are thousands of large corporations in America, but they are in constant competition with each other, along with every small firm in the market, to hire the best talent they can find. Harris starts out with misleading statistics that lament that women only earn 80 percent of what men earn, and then waxes even more indignant that the ratios are even worse for Latina women (53 percent), Native American women (58 percent), and African American women (61 percent). Clearly, any effort to accurately explain these outcomes requires an accounting, as she acknowledges in the fine print, for education, hours worked, job classification, years of experience, parental leave, and many more factors. Accounting for some of these factors—many others are hard to identify, observe, and measure—reduces that gap to around 6 percent at most.

If the gap tops out at that level, the question is whether this massively coercive gambit is worthwhile. It is exceedingly difficult to make these adjustments, and Harris’s proposal comes at a peculiarly inopportune moment. The hands-off policy of the Trump administration on domestic employment markets—in painful contrast with his meddlesome approach on international trade—has led to “screaming shortages” for skilled and unskilled workers alike. Employers are moving heaven and earth to offer not only wage and salary increases, but also a variety of perks to fill gaps in their labor force. Does Harris really believe that the forces of discrimination are so ingrained that firms, many of which are run by women, would reject or underpay women because of their desire to establish a male hierarchy that costs them both time and money? If there is some systematic and significant evidence of salary imbalance, she should demonstrate it rigorously before undertaking this massive regulatory initiative. Her use of uncorrected numbers is totally indefensible.

Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America discuss Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan deciding not to launch a GOP challenge to President Trump in 2020. They also examine Jim’s research into the staggering amount of corruption non-profit groups on the right are committing in the name of supposedly helping conservative candidates. Finally, Democratic presidential candidate John Hickenlooper slams socialism and takes on a chorus of boos at the Democratic convention in California.

Welcome to the Harvard Lunch Club Political podcast my sweeties! Come to refill the old political obsession tank? Here to procure that pithy but deep diatribe fix? Well you are in the right place! This is edition number 223 and we call it the “No Match Podcast” with your absolutely unmatchable hosts, Right Coast radio guy Todd Feinburg and Left Coast AI guy Mike Stopa (the handsome one). This week we have our dear friend and special guest Jessica Vaughan, she of the Director of Research for the Center for Immigration Studies, to discuss with us the return (did I hear anyone say “Hallelujah”???) of the No Match letters that are now going out to every employer in America who submits an I9 form for even one employee whose name and social security number do not match what is in the Social Security database.

Jessica tells us that many of these no matches are just…typos! Many are just…name changes! And many are (shhhh) illegal aliens either using stolen or fabricated SS#’s. This is where the actual problem is. The Democrats know it. The Chamber of Commerce knows it. And they are screaming that these letters are going out and good lord that is a good thing!

Member Post

 

The week of Easter 2019 was difficult, personally and as a Christian. I lost my mother in law, our last remaining parent. Notre Dame caught fire and burned, doing massive damage. The small Christian community of Sri Lanka suffered terrorist attacks, resulting in hundreds of deaths. Another shooting at a Jewish synagogue in California. I […]

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Member Post

 

Senator Joe Biden started his campaign motor today by announcing his run for president in 2020. I was hoping for the sake of his family that he would pass on that. There’s only 48 “qualified” Democratic candidates running. The Ukraine just elected a 41 year old stand-up comic – then surely one of the 67 […]

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Being a bipolar psychologist must be quite an experience: “Huh. Here I am, entering a manic state, and even thinking about my disordered thinking. I could give a lengthy disquisition on the neurochemical causes of bipolar disorder. Yet I can’t seem to do anything about it. How very ‘meta’ (as the kids say). Consciousness is strange.” […]

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Mitch McConnell is calling on Republicans to take a stand against socialism to fight the Democrat party in the 2020 election: ‘We need to have a referendum on socialism,’ the Kentucky Republican told reporters. ‘I’m going to be arguing, and I’m encouraging my colleagues to argue, that we are the firewall against socialism in this […]

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 Our old friend, Claire Berlinski, has a very good piece in the City Journal about a communist festival she attended last Fall. In classic Berlinski style, she captures the fist in the air punch with all its Marxist glory, using her funny/serious, tongue-in-cheek writing style. It’s a snapshot of the mindset of current zombie European […]

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While reading one book, another book was mentioned within its pages called “The Judgement of the Nations” by Christopher Dawson, copyright, 1942. I’d never heard of him. Here’s an excerpt: “A hundred years is a relatively short period. Yet the last hundred years have changed human life more completely than any period in the history […]

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Let’s Try Socialism

 

I’m serious. Let’s do it. This appears to be an idea whose time has come [again]. A lot of the people who tried it in the 20th century, 100 million or so of them, are unfortunately no longer alive to tell us that it didn’t work. And, also unfortunately, it seems that we are not teaching students that socialism didn’t work, and so they’re naturally enough assuming that maybe it does.

So let’s give it a try. We can chalk it up as a learning experience.

Quote of the Day – Socialists and Progressives

 

The champions of socialism call themselves progressives, but they recommend a system which is characterized by rigid observance of routine and by a resistance to every kind of improvement. They call themselves liberals, but they are intent upon abolishing liberty. They call themselves democrats, but they yearn for dictatorship. They call themselves revolutionaries, but they want to make the government omnipotent. They promise the blessings of the Garden of Eden, but they plan to transform the world into a gigantic post office. Every man but one a subordinate clerk in a bureau. What an alluring utopia! What a noble cause to fight! – Ludwig von Mises

The only change I would make to this statement is to substitute the DMV for the post office. The post office (usually) delivers your mail without having to make you stand in line for hours, even when it does come late. Other than that, von Mises nails it, and I do not see how I can add more.

Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America enthusiastically cheer the first two months of Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and point out that good things can happen when a leader hits the ground running on the things they promised to do. They also wince as just six House Democrats agree that illegal immigrants shouldn’t be voting. And they wonder if millennials are really far to the left or whether they embrace labels they don’t quite understand as 73 percent favor the government instituting universal health care but 79 percent want to keep private insurance.

Through the Wormhole with the DNC

 

Prime Minister’s Questions this past week foreshadowed the American government’s future. Such a future had been seen as years, or decades, away, but events of this past week suggest the United States has entered a wormhole, as in a science fiction story. Indeed, it seems that one party has created an artificial wormhole, or hyperspace jump gate. Are we now being hurled towards convergence with British politics and society, with truth becoming stranger than fiction?

Prime Minister’s Questions, on 6 March 2019, featured questions about what Labour MPs called “knife crime.” While the Conservative PM lightly pushed back with talk of “drug gangs” as the problem, she effectively conceded the left’s position by citing an “offensive weapons” bill as a part of the government’s response. The accepted range of debate in Britain is now over how helpless the subjects of the realm should be rendered, firearms having long been restricted to near non-existence for ordinary people.

Hello podcast fans, young and old, big and small and welcome to this edition of the Harvard Lunch Club Political podcast, number 215(!!!) the Irredeemable AOC edition of the show with your lost-soul hosts, east coast radio guy Todd Feinburg and west coast AI guy Mike Stopa. Each week we bring to you the meat, the core, the essence of the political scene with cutting insight, guffaw-inducing humor and a pinch of profundity.

This week we bring you the infamous Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez, the big AOC, the woman of the hour. It is the sunset of capitalism and the dawn of a new human stewardship of the sacred space-travelling temple that we call planet Earth. It is a moment of renewal, it is a platform so sincere that the trees will be hugging us back. AOC forever!

Socialism Like . . . Sweden?

 

A few months ago Ricochet member @mattyvan put up a great post about Sweden, Sweden. Lessons for America? , which included an hour long documentary about Sweden’s economy. Since then we have seen Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez become one of the most popular young Democrats and one of the oldest, Bernie Sanders, announce that he will run for president in 2020. With admitted socialist becoming more and more more prominent, it might be worth revisiting this topic.

While Cuba and Venezuela give us good examples of what socialism can do to a country, they do not exactly tell a happy story. So, the folks promoting “Democratic Socialism” are telling us to look to Sweden as an example of what we can do in America. The problem is, Sweden doesn’t really fit the model of what Bernie and company are trying to sell.

Member Post

 

“Yes. I do understand we’re in the middle of a Cold War.  But have you seen how many people wait in line for bread in Moscow?  It stands to reason their bread must be great.”  Young Sheldon, broadcast Feb. 21, 2019; set ca. 1989-90. “It’s funny, sometimes American journalists talk about how bad a country […]

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