Monday, September 26, 2011

She's Baaaaack!

No sooner does Noman think he's done with Elizabeth Warren than she leaps back into the fray with yet more provocative material.  This woman is a living, breathing blog-op.

She's worth addressing for several reasons.  First, she's a walking compendium of Liberal certitudes whose cocksure righteousness causes her to effuse pristine formulations of Statist credal beliefs.  Secondly, she's a Chaired Harvard Law Professor, which attests to her position at the top of the profession's food chain, and highlights the beliefs that animate the nation's preeminent reservoir of legal wisdom.  Finally, she's a continual menace to society.

Her latest publicized outburst contained the following observations:
  • $4 trillion of our present financial hole was caused by George Bush
    • $1 trillion in tax cuts for the rich
    • $2 trillion in two wars on our children's credit card
    • $1 trillion in benefit giveaways to the drug companies (applause)
  • We can fix our problems by not doing those things (laughs)
  • Nobody in this country got rich on their own
  • Factory builders, specifically:
    • Moved goods on roads that the rest of paid for (huzzahs)
    • Hired workers the rest of us paid to educate
    • Were safe because of police and fire forces that the rest of us paid for
    • Didn't have to worry about maurading bands, and to hire someone to protect against them, because of the work the rest of us did.
In sum, her message to factory owners is: "You built a factory and it turned into something terrific or a great idea.  God bless.  Keep a big hunk of it.  But, part of the underlying social contract is you take a hunk of that and pay forward for the next kid who comes along."

Applause was generous from the exclusively white, middle-aged-to-old gaggle of fatsos populating the event, which was held in a suburban indoor patio.  The scene transported Noman back to UC Berkeley in the 1970's.  He can just see the Birkenstock-clad toes wiggling in glee.

The response on Free Republic ("America's exclusive site for God, Family, Country, Life & Liberty conservatives"--was immediate and eloquent.  To wit:

"You didn’t have to worry that marauding bands would come and seize everything at your factory...

Oh yeah?"

While admiring the conciseness, sufficiency and perspicuity of this riposte, Noman would like to address Professor Warren's ideas at greater length.

They have apparently resonated so well with the public that the President has incorporated them into his talking points.  In this stump speech to the Congressional Black Caucus, he echoes Warren's themes and parrots her emphasis on schools and roads that served to help businessmen make their money.  The full speech is on C-Span.  The leit motif occurs at minute 18, just before the President makes the faux pas of arguing that billionaires should pay taxes at the same rate as Jews.  Oh, my.

Noman is willing to give the President the benefit of the doubt.  He simply misspoke.  He probably was trying to say "junior" or "June bug"--definitely not "Junior Senator from Illinois, or Juneral Electric.  But, in the spirits of fairness and equality, Noman would like to see this gaffe attributed to his heart of hearts, and hear it harped on throughout the election season.  Does that sound harsh?  Noman says "Macaca."

While Professor Warren's felicitous formulation omits one social actor crucial to businesses success, viz. customers with money in their pockets, her words underscore an undeniable truth.  Nobody alive is an isolated, autonomous individual.  Human beings are social entities.

We do not bring ourselves into being, birth ourselves, raise ourselves, invent our own language and customs, educate ourselves, propel ourselves through forest and jungle, invent our own culture, etc.

It would be an absurdity of the highest order, a denial of the indisputable truth that Professor Warren appropriates for her purposes, to claim the individual right as an autonomous actor to kill one's baby in the womb, for instance, or to insist upon self-defining the mystery of life in splendid isolation from others in ways that oblige them contra longstanding cultural understandings to accept one's marriage to a member of the same sex.

Noman is certain that no sane or responsible person would ever suggest such self-referential fatuities, certainly not Professor Warren.

He thus foresees many avenues of future bipartisan collaboration to redress decades of bad law imposed by Liberal jurisprudes pondering the existence of an isolated, abstract, individual right--to fire a gun for instance--without considering the context in which that right is asserted--say, the gun's discharge into another person's body.

With respect to Professor Warren's factual premises, Noman thinks it will be more difficult to find common ground.  Her use of the term "we" recalls the joke in which Tonto responds to the Lone Ranger's declaration that "We're surrounded by Indians, and in trouble."  Tonto replies: "Who do you mean by 'we,' Kimosabi?"   Neither are we as tonto (stupid, in Spanish) as she apparently thinks.

Some background might help to explain.  Noman is Catholic, and his Country is forbidden by the U.S. Constitution to help him raise his children in his faith.  The Supreme Court assures us that it has something to do with a talmudic parsing of the words "respecting an" in the First Amendment.

The wee-ist scintilla of religious taint dispels the State's obligation to include the No-children within the collectivity educated by Professor Warren's royal "we."  Indeed, it compels the opposite.

Noman provides his No-children with the benefits of a classical liberal education at home and in various cooperatives, which the State will not pay for, and at considerable expense to himself.  When he needs help too cover the thousands of dollars of annual tuition that eight No-children ring up (tens-of-thousands of dollars including the No-children in college), he turns to his parish, not his government.  His Church responds with Christian charity; his State with Liberal prejudice.

His government--the one he pays taxes to in order to educate other people's children, inter alia, in beliefs inhospitable to, or openly critical of his faith--has no commitment to him, his No-children or to similarly situated religious families.  We educate our children as we choose to, not as bureaucrats choose for us.  Professor Warren's "we" consequently refuses to help, and washes its hands of the responsibility to these "next kids who come along."

In sum, everyone is entitled, but us.  Liberals say so.  That's fair.  Because Liberals are compassionate.  They're for equality.  They're against prejudice and hardship.  They have secret knowledge.

Call Noman old fashioned.  He wants his children to learn Latin, Logic, Literature, and the like in a way that does not slight the achievements of the occidental tradition or its oriental, Judeo-Christian moral foundations.

He does not see the benefit of having unionized Democratic Party apparatchiks indoctrinate his children in the glories of condom use before they are even capable of using one or knowing what it's for.

On that topic, how might one explain procreation to a five-year old, or why one might choose the activity that brings it about while rejecting the act's full dimensions?

How does one explain sexual desire to children?  Why should one?

What gives bureaucrats the right to teach other people's children essentially moral doctrines at a pre-moral age,  e.g., "Thou shalt have it as thou pleasest, as long as we permitteth it; and remember, children, Heather hath two mommies?"

By virtue of what is the State entitled to our children's minds?

What debilitating silliness public education has devolved to under Liberal hegemony.  To Professor Warren's mind, this is how the factory owner succeeded and made a hunk of money.  This is what successive rounds of government pork purport to create jobs with.  Mmm, mmm, mmm.

Noman's plight as one with children that the State has no duty to educate because of his nefarious educational preferences was underscored the other day by an Asian neighbor in this University neighborhood, which is heavily populated by intellectual immigrants.  She approached him to sign her petition calling for reinstatement of school bus service that had been cut from the city's budget.

Noman signed it despite knowing that cuts were necessary--as are an entire reevaluation of the things that government funds--only because he's certain that the city of Ann Arbor didn't cut perks and gravy jobs that it should have, and rather imposed burdens on homeowners like this woman standing before him.

She asked if the No-children also went to the local schools, which are a five-minute drive, or twenty-minute walk away.  She seemed surprised to learn--uncomprehending would be a better word--that Noman paid tuition, paid for books, supplies, tech equipment, food and transportation to schools a twenty-five minute drive away, all out of his own pocket.

Noman didn't try to explain why she, a foreigner who could barely speak English, was entitled to a government sponsored education for her children--education that Noman subsidizes with taxes--and he, a natural-born citizen wasn't.

How could he explain that the words "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof" ordain that her children are entitled to free education at his expense, but his children aren't?

Perhaps he could merely have said that he believes in God, that everything "is" by virtue of participation in his being, that he wants his children to be able to respond to God's call for a personal relationship, and that it takes a lot of specialized education to make sense of it all, and left it at that.

The salient point for Professor Warren on her terms is that there are millions of kids that "we" don't pay to educate who also make the factory builder successful.  It is fraudulent and offensive to enlist their name and moral authority in her crusade, and adds insult to injury to invoke them in order to increase their taxes, not just the factory owners.'  It is tyranny to increase their compulsory contribution to a benefit they are precluded by the increasers from receiving.

On more general grounds, her terms are contentious.  Certainly not in the Keynesian enclaves she frequents.  But, where people know the rudiments of the economics that have actually yielded American prosperity, they understand: the dangers of rapidly escalating government indebtedness; the insanity of treating a debt-induced sickness by prescribing yet more of it; the folly of trying to grow an economy by stimulating demand rather than stimulating supply to be demanded; that an increase in the wealth of those who under-consume and take risk to create capital in order to produce more of something to consume in the future benefits everyone in an economy--they have already "paid forward for the next kid who comes along," even before paying taxes, which they do in disproportionate numbers; the importance of fomenting savings; that higher taxes and government strings distort economic incentives, and lower taxes do the opposite by freeing people to make their own experiments and reap the rewards if successful; that private enterprise rather than government redistribution better increases society's productive capacity, expands its economy and benefits all who live in it; that private capitalism induces even the greedy to raise other's standard of living; that, on balance, the rich get that way by offering something of value to others, not by making them poor.

There are alternatives to government's commandeering of resources and control to build roads, educate children and provide security, let alone alleviate suffering and be fair.  Government control provides patronage, waste and corruption--and cheap thrills for big egos--not productivity, prosperity and liberty.

There are private ways of alleviating suffering and redressing inequalities.  That is the role of intermediate associations such as family, church, community associations, and foundations, which confer the additional benefit of preparing people to help themselves, and others.

Mommy government is not the only way to address income inequality or its affects; neither is it the best.  It is only the most expensive, and most likely to end in bankruptcy.

Doubt it?  Tell Noman, Professor Warren, are the BRIC countries America's new creditors because of the relatively free operation of trade along capitalist lines, or because of United Nations' mandates?

Public problems do not necessitate public solutions.  Private solutions to public problems are more intelligent, effective and preferable.   They encourage resourcefulness rather than dependence.  So, please, Professor, leave us alone with your economic notions and superior compassion for the middle class in whose name you deign to present yourself for office.

With respect to the rest, even taking President Bush's initiatives on her terms, is she suggesting that the Bush tax cuts didn't benefit the nation's overall well-being after the crash and 9/11 body blows to the economy?   Is she denying that President Obama himself declined to reverse them when he had the chance due to the baneful economic affects such a blunder would unleash?

Does President Bush's $2 trillion on our children's credit card trouble her less than the $5 trillion (more than twice as much in half the time) that President Obama, Speaker Pelosi, Majority Leader Reid and Democratic governance rang up between 2006 and 2010?  Or did our children get a forbearance from new creditors?

Perhaps it's war and not debt that Professor Warren objects to?  Did President Obama end the wars while Noman wasn't looking?

How does President Bush's $1 trillion dollar giveaway to drug companies in return for a senior's benefit that many Democrats supported compare to the Pharmaceutical Industry's expected payoff for conspiring with President Obama and Democrats alone to impose an unwanted, unpopular healthcare regime on the country?

Does the money thrown at an entire productive industry trouble her more than the $500 million thrown away on Solyndra, merely one Green plunderer of the nation's Treasury in a sea of so many on Democrat's watch?

In sum, by virtue of what are we to trust Professor Warren to fix these problems and not committ them herself to the Nth degree?  Her intellectual modesty?  Her secret knowledge?  Certainly not the track record.

Professor Warren, please have your staff review these questions regarding your philosophical anthropology, your notions of who deserves to be considered in the social compact, your ideas about how money is made, and your views of recent government history.

Then, please contact Scott Brown's campaign and challenge him to a series of debates.  Noman knows that's your specialty.  But, he's dying nonetheless to see you in action outside of your element.

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