Reply To: Rachel Maddow's Blind Deference to Government Power


I did like the one where she stood in front of the Hoover Dam talking about “big things” – I found it lulzy. I mean, I’d love to have taken her up on that. “Ok, lets build some more big dams, how about that? Or maybe 100 nuclear power plants, lets dooo eeet!” – and watch how fast she said “oh, um, I didn’t mean build that, no – it would upset the environment. What I meant is we need more handouts and more subsidies to businesses connected to Democratic donors, that’s the ‘big thing’ I meant – big stimuli programs directed at the friends and supporters of the President.”

Which btw brings to mind something I should add as a caviate to the remarks on the “inequality chime-in” – libertarians should feel no need to defend the current distribution of income and wealth as somehow reflecting market conditions. Indeed, people should consequently point out that the very thing they decry is the *result* of the progressive structure they support.

For example, many, many progressives went on and on about GE not paying any taxes (net). Fine – well, we don’t want anyone to pay taxes, but GE got that status as a result of special favors, given to them by the progressive structure; GE thus gains a relative advantage over its competitors. GE is and has been in tight with government officials, particularly under the current “we want economic fairness” Administration.

GE gets special perks and subsidies from government, and it’s leaders sit on government boards that “recommend” (write) rules and regulations, and they stack them against their competitors and the little guys. Progressive government has always been – right from the start – the systematic empowerment of the big and politically connected interests at the expense of others (this was the case, historically, from the early Progressives, through FDR, to the present Progressives).

Now, one thing that the tax code that progressives are currently trumpeting did was produce the *appearance* of “less inequality,” but it mainly did so by getting people to shift their resources, so that their *reportable* income and wealth looked smaller. But the era that they’re constantly pointing to, now, as the halcion days of equality – the post-New Deal ’50s – was also the day when entrenched industries & interests had the most power; this was the era of the “(liberal) Establishment,” which during the early & late ’60s the progressive left railed against precisely because of how they had institutionalized their power while giving the appearance – without the substance – of equity.

This is mentioned in some of the lectures here, briefly, but more directly addressed in some of the recommended books. It is the inevitable consequence of a powerful government that grants favors and dispenses punishments (in the form of regulations & targeted taxation): inevitably, *BY* *DEFINITION* the politically well-connected will get the benefits of such a system, because those who are not by definition will not reach the attention of those in political power.

If your friends want less inequality, both economically and in the form of political influence, they should favor *decentralization,* not concentration in the hands of a central government dispensing favors (“public private partnerships,” and “investments in x”) to its friends. Remind them that the Dodd-Frank bill, which like the Sarbanes-Oxley bill was sold to them on the promise of “protecting” us from “big financial institutions” actually *favors* the big financial institutions at the expense of their smaller competitors – again, like Sarbanes-Oxley did. This bait-and-switch is endemic (it is what FDR’s NRA & other programs did, as well), and it’s time that the “smart, well-informed” set wises up.

Anyhow, yes; Maddow and her ilk are perfectly emblematic of this system’s spokesmen; the pretense of “challenging authority” when really they’re the Tools of The Man, courtiers “bravely speaking truth to power” by demanding that the authorities be given more power and influence over us.