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Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Five more days

... until the 100th anniversary of the end of Western Civilization. Via Rorate Caeli.



About the time I posted this, a friend made a lengthy comment on Facebook, exhorting everybody to vote, hope and pray. American conservatives are in their ghost dance phase.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

The perfect as the enemy of the good


And with this Daily Article from Mises.org, the remaining Lew Rockwell-sponsored site leaves the blogroll:
One area where many otherwise-correct free-market thinkers and libertarians stumble is in the area of right-to-work laws, now gaining considerable popularity across the nation. These laws come in a variety of forms, but in most cases a state that adopts right-to-work laws makes it illegal for employers to require union membership as a condition of employment. So far, twenty-four states have adopted these laws and the state legislature in Missouri has plans to make that state a right-to-work state sometime early next year.

Right-to-work laws are attractive to some because they help undercut the monopoly powers granted to labor unions by government. They also appeal to the more pragmatic minded because of the distinct improvements in economic growth. A recent study by the National Institute of Labor Relations Research found that, over a ten year period, states with right-to-work laws experience significant growth in manufacturing output and GDP compared to non-right-to-work states. This is, of course, the result we would expect from diminishing the power of government-created monopolies such as those granted to labor unions.

But utilitarian concerns aside, free-market advocates must ask whether these laws are the right way to reduce government power, and whether they satisfy the moral and ethical criteria at the root of free-market and libertarian thought. Is it right to restrict the freedom to contract in order to counteract existing restrictions on that same freedom?
Libertarians - boldly answering the question nobody asked. Indeed, with that starting point (people are free to contract, period!), one may ask whether it is right to prohibit trade in slave-manufactured goods in order to counteract laws granting chattel rights in human beings? The libertarian, hogtied in his logic trap, can only answer one way: no, no and a thousand times no!

The author acknowledges, as he must, that unions operate ab initio from a government-granted privilege: if employees can form a collective bargaining unit, the employer cannot refuse to bargain with them. Since there will always be more people looking for jobs than people with jobs to give, it's pretty easy to predict that in an unhampered market, unions simply would not exist in their current form. They'd be specialized guilds, company unions or labor pools.

Right-to-work takes the government's thumb off the scale--if you don't want to join the collective, you don't have to as a condition of employment. In other words, it's a law that rolls back the interventions of another law. And consequently, unions are pretty scarce in right-to-work states.

I'm not necessarily anti-union; I've encountered some top-notch union labor. I've also seen the scum of the earth hanging around union locals. And, I've seen plenty of stupid, greedy, shortsighted employers.

The bottom line is the world is just too complicated and has too many novel situations and too many wildly differing viewpoints for some Grand Unified Theory of Everything to apply every single time. For that matter, how does a libertarian regime stay libertarian? Does it have to pass a law outlawing people getting together and passing laws? Why isn't a law just a covenant that a group of people agreed would run with the land instead of everybody drafting contracts with everybody else? What sort of long-term investment is even possible in such a situation? Wouldn't the libertarians still find themselves marking out borders and patrolling them with machine guns to keep the non-libertarians from stealing their stuff?

Lew could have garnered a lot more influence and respect for his Mises Institute just sticking with praxeology. But apparently this crew just can't help themselves, so they lurch into political debate for which they are not at all equipped, even as they hilariously and scrupulously avoid any meritorious debate on genetics, race, community, human sexuality or culture.

There is one area where Mises.org's frantic clampdown on discussion--as where the topic at hand might venture too near the Southern Poverty Law Center's list of Unthinkables--has never taken place: abortion is the one controversial topic that the site's sponsors have always made sure gets a full, comprehensive and open airing.

Some possible substitutes for Mises.org could be Cafe Hayek, Wolf Street, Robert Murphy's blog or David Stockman's Contra Corner.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Tone deaf

What's also called a "tin ear." I'm actually using this phrase in the context of people who seemingly do not even read or hear what they're saying. Two examples:

1. Tyler Cowen is an active, engaged intellectual who posts on countless topics at his Marginal Revolution. However, he seems strangely incurious about the Middle East beyond the confines of a certain ethno-nationalist state. In fairness to Prof. Cowen, there is a strange incuriousness across the entire media spectrum over the fact that several new countries are being born in the region and the borders blithely drawn up by the retreating British and French are being reworked.

Except, of course, when the wretched flotsam interred in the Gaza Strip--a piece of useless geography connected to nothing--happen to lob a few rockets across the Israeli border. Then, Tyler's intellectual curiosity blossoms. How intriguing. How should Israel respond? What are the implications?

These issues weigh heavily on the minds of Ashkenazi economists here and here.

As I note on the linked threads, Israel is where all that warm, fuzzy-wuzzy talk about open borders, multiculturalism and cosmopolitanism just evaporates into thin air. Once the subect of Israel comes up, then all these economists who are otherwise tearful, Kantian, handwringing towers of Jell-O at the thought of MS-13 gang members being turned away at the Rio Grande suddenly find their blood-and-soil cojones.

The entire region actually seems very instructive on Cathedral tenets of multiculturalism, open borders, democracy and Islamic rule. Of course, that is precisely why everybody is doing backflips around it.

2. Here's kind of a quaint story about a 19-year old Englishman trying to fumble his way back to some sense of ethnic identity and pride, complete with a LARP Knights-of-St.-George getup. The young man is running for a local council seat and voices the unspeakable.
“You can walk down parts of London and not see a white face. That’s not acceptable.

“Havering’s lucky: we have a low level of ethnic minorities here, but that’s changing.

“I can see the change and I don’t want that to happen. It’s not the future I want for my children.

“It’s a bloodless genocide where no one’s really dying but a whole race of people is dying out by forced race mixing.

“It’s done subliminally through advertisements. The average is usually a white 
female and a black male and a mixed race child.

“Because it’s shown 24/7 there’s no escape. They all have the same brain-washing TVs saying this is normal.”
His older, wiser opponent magnanimously refrains from calling for the young man's drawing and quartering, and makes this contribution to the battle of ideas:
“It’s nonsense, his comments are completely ignorant and I find it very offensive,” he said. [White people, of course, positively tingle at the prospect of being offended.]

“The issue really is not multiculturalism but the way we need to expand public services to meet increase in public 
demand. Havering is becoming more multicultural and those who come and work beside us, we would want to have a peaceful existence with them.”

Now if the old fool actually listened to what he was saying, he'd recognize that he has just acknowledged multiculturalism as a consumptive doom loop that ends when all the net payors either move away or are assimilated downward, and the beloved diversity is left stewing in its own juices. And "peaceful existence" means paying the Dane-Geld to keep your unassimilable and implacable enemies quiescent.

None so blind...

Monday, July 14, 2014

Glorious multiculturalism


Hollande urges Middle East diplomacy after pro-Palestinian protest in Paris


What better place for a Palestinian protest than on the Statue du la Republique?

Should be real interesting when the Sunni-Shia conflict starts heating up over here.

Mean old world



"My Naked Truth," via Chateau Heartiste.

Ladies (do any females read my blog?), you do not have nearly as much time as you think. Make a man wild about you at your peak of physical attractiveness, bear his children, fit him with a pair of wife goggles and stick with him through thick and thin. And at 59 you had better be a really good grandmother, because you are not even in the minor leagues on any other playing field.


I'm writing this on the internet, because out in the real world it is not my place to be saying this. This is the sort of thing old women used to tell young women.

If women had any sense, they'd demand the repeal of Title VII and refuse to go to college.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Principled dissent


Per one of my recent posts, Ad Orientem remarks on how the immigration narrative is drawing dissent from unexpected quarters. And today, I came across another one, from Catholic priest Fr. John Zuhlsdorf. Apparently, the Church's newly discovered 11th Commandment is highly remunerative:
Between Dec 2010 and Nov 2013, the Catholic Charities Diocese of Galveston received $15,549,078 in federal grants from Health & Human Services for “Unaccompanied Alien Children Project” with a program description of “Refugee and Entry Assistance.”

Last year, the Catholic Charities Diocese of Fort Worth received $350,000 from Department of Homeland Security for “citizenship and education training” with a program description of “citizenship and immigration services.”

Between September 2010 and September 2013, the Catholic Charities of Dallas received $823,658 from the Department of Homeland Security for “Citizenship Education Training” for “refugee and entrant assistance.”

From Dec 2012 to January 2014, Baptist Child & Family Services received $62,111,126 in federal grants from Health & Human Services for “Unaccompanied Alien Children Program.”
Note that plans for the current human wave have apparently been in the works since 2010. The comments are interesting, and the divide is deep and irreconcilable. I think a lot of enthusiasm for unchecked immigration correlates with childlessness or the ability to afford good school districts.

One commenter is pretty apocalyptic:
The Catholic Church will break in two over this. As to the Patriotic Catholic Church in America: Spare me Lord from sermons about unity from Dolan, O’Malley, or Gomez. Spare me the word “welcome” again from men in the pulpit with scales on their eyes. Spare me photos of Masses on the border with hands reaching through the security fence. Spare me pictures of Father Larry Snyder and Sister Carol Keehan praying with Obama in the Oval Office. Let those priests who would be missionaries, go to the foreign places and serve the poor as the Church has traditionally done. Spare us all of it before we lose our minds and our faith.

This got me thinking about the irony of the excommunicated Matthew Heimbach, an Anglo-Saxon perfectly content to worship in the Byzantine form in an archdiocese which answers to an Arab patriarch. Now, by contrast and without a lot of links I don't care to format, I have encountered folks who while simultaneously convinced that the West is a palimpsest, and morally obligated to welcome every r-selected group out there, are yet engaged in reconstructing a moribund Christian rite which is explicitly, ethnically Northern European. As I've noted, the natural impulse seems to be for Christians to want a liturgy in their own ethnic expression.

Thus, we see that where a lot of erstwhile liberal Westerners have encountered diversity, as in actual Russian, Greek or Arab Christian culture, and not just the harmless stuff at the ethnic food festival, they absolutely despise it. When it comes down to it, they prefer Muslim immigrants to Eastern Christian immigrants. By contrast, race realists such as Matthew Heimbach are perfectly open to learning from very different cultural forms and adopting them as their own. After all, what is supposedly his Western ethos is now just a cradle-to-grave harangue about his hereditary blame for all the ills of the planet, for which he must atone through his voluntary displacement and eventual extinction.

Why would I or anybody pledge their efforts to preserving a self-loathing, toxic ethos that wants to whitewash everybody into the same generic anti-culture? These people are deluding themselves; nobody outside their K-selected demographic cares about elaborate liturgics and arcane theology.

Western culture has now determined to wreck itself; those of us lacking the suicidal impulse are perforce jumping off the train.