Why the Hobby Lobby case matters so much
Not to me, actually, but to the Left.
There was a comment on this thread at Rod Dreher's, which I can no longer track down: without cheap, easy contraception, the modern woman ceases to exist.
In other words, the reason the Left can brook no compromise, no deviation from the party line on birth control is because without chemical contraception (which will still run you less than your cable bill), women don't get the broadened options of sleeping with attractive strangers who make terrible husbands and fathers. Without birth control, a lot of traditional mores come crashing back.
The same thing, tragically, can be said for antibiotic treatment of venereal diseases (now increasingly antibiotic-resistant).
Same with welfare, which means matriarchal black America can raise net tax-consuming broods with street corner lotharios.
Same with Title VII, which provides HR and other bureaucratic sinecures for women which a healthy, competitive market would not otherwise bother to create.
Birth control also degrades the interactions of young, bourgeois individuals into a brutalized sexual marketplace, and all the legislation and whining of sexually undesirable feminists won't change it. Some honesty on this point is needed: what we are talking about with the contraception-mandate is a subsidy for younger, sexually attractive people who are gainfully employed at mid- and large-size companies.
It's astounding how much of the modern world is devoted to making women feel comfortable and enabling them to have the same options as men. Of course, all this depends on men still being willing to pay taxes and produce enough surplus for all these wonderful things.
I don't mean to pick on women here. Men don't like having to make hard choices either. We have an entire monetary system dreamed up by men to avoid things like having to produce before we consume.
Interestingly, according to David Stockman, the Federal Reserve as originally implemented had little to do with the grand, macro-economic engineering which it now regards as its prime directive.
Thus, in an age of balanced budgets and bipartisan fiscal rectitude, the Fed’s legislative architects had not even considered the possibility of central bank monetization of the public debt, and, in any event, had a totally different mission in mind.
The new Fed system was to operate decentralized “reserve banks” in 12 regions—most of them far from Wall Street in places like San Francisco, Dallas, Kansas City and Cleveland. Their job was to provide a passive “rediscount window” where national banks within each region could bring sound, self-liquidating commercial notes and receivables to post as collateral in return for cash to meet depositor withdrawals or to maintain an approximate 15 percent cash reserve.
Accordingly, the assets of the 12 reserve banks were to consist entirely of short-term commercial paper arising out of the ebb and flow of commerce and trade on the free market, not the debt emissions of Washington. In this context, the humble task of the reserve banks was to don green eyeshades and examine the commercial collateral brought by member banks, not to grandly manage the macro economy through targets for interest rates, money growth or credit expansion—to say nothing of targeting jobs, GDP, housing starts or the Russell 2000, as per today’s fashion.
Even the rediscount rate charged to member banks for cash loans was to float at a penalty spread above money market rates set by supply and demand for funds on the free market.
The big point here is that Carter Glass’ “banker’s bank” was an instrument of the market, not an agency of state policy. The so-called economic aggregates of the later Keynesian models—-GDP, employment, consumption and investment—were to remain an unmanaged outcome on the free market, reflecting the interaction of millions of producers, consumers, savers, investors, entrepreneurs and even speculators.
In short, the Fed as “banker’s bank” had no dog in the GDP hunt. Its narrow banking system liquidity mission would not vary whether the aggregates were growing at 3 percent or contracting at 3 percent.
All very practical stuff. Of course, it couldn't last when, again, men wanted the ability to wage industrial-scale war and not actually have to pay for it.
Can any of my more literate readers tell me if there's a classical, comprehensive term for the universal vice of trying to live without consequences? It doesn't seem to be covered by the Seven Deadly Sins.