Let America Be America Again

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Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded — here and there, now and then — are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people then slip back into abject poverty.

This is known as “bad luck.”

Robert Heinlein

Scott Brown is a largely pro-abort RINO, but he has come up with a campaign commercial in the above video which is devastating both to Obama and his opponent in the Massachusetts Senate race, Elizabeth “Fauxcahontas” Warren.  Warren came up with the business bashing meme that Obama disastrously latched on to, and Brown is ramming it down their throats.  By far the best campaign commercial I have seen this year.

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  1. Watching Obama, it occurred to me that he is playing up to the envy, greed and other lower instincts of the people. Sowing discord, chaos and promoting vice is not human. It is un-American.
    Here is one: “The duty of a PATRIOT is to PROTECT his country FROM its government.” Thomas Paine

  2. I am reminded of last Sunday’s first reading, in which Jeremiah warns about the shepherd who allows the flock to wander away from each other. That man in the White House wants to break up the flock that is America, pitting one against another. Envy and jealousy are not an ethical basis for public policy.

  3. It is precisely that, and ONLY that theme that will send the President packing.

    Hammer the economy theme, hammer it, hammer it, hammer it.

    Bring every discussion back to it.

    If the President wants to talk about child birth, point out the plummetting birthrate due to the economy. If he wants to talk about immigration, point out the 23 percent unemployment among African Americans. If he wants to talk about cooperation in Washington, point out the failed bi-partisan stimulus bills.

    Hammer it, hammer it, hammer it.

  4. No, it is not. I am reading him literally even though it is a rhetorical flourish, because it miseducates.

    You had during pre-modern eras periods of advance and retreat in levels of prosperity. Robert Heinlein did not have a comprehensive understanding of why this occurred; serious students of economic history are uncertain about that. See Philip Daeleader on late antiquity and the early medieval period.

    As for the modern period, catastrophic retreats in levels of prosperity are generally coincident with wartime. You also see it in economies whose measurable aggregate production is heavily dependent on net exports of minerals and their national income fluctuates a great deal according to the terms of trade.

    You could say you saw it in Soviet Russia after the 1st World War and much of Eastern Europe after the 2d. You still have to try and disentangle the effects of the war from the effects of the abuse of manufacturers, financiers, merchants, artisans, and peasants.

    It should be noted that proprietors are not a ‘tiny minority’. They are certainly atypical, but the number of people in business for themselves full time is at any one time in the seven digits in this country. Being a notable in industrial history, whether your name is Carnegie or Jobs, is rare. The thing is, the benefits attributable to innovation in a discrete economic sector are often surprisingly small. It is the collective effect of many tiny efforts which comes to matter.

    We are not living in Roumania ca. 1946. The current regime’s regulatory practices and ham handed capital allocation will one supposes cause such injuries as the economy gradually comes to a point of stagnation. That modern industrial civilization will disappear is something we can be fairly sure will not occur. That 25 years worth of economic improvements will evaporate (as happened during the period running from the fall of 1929 to the spring of 1933) is also unlikely (and most likely to arise from trouble in the financial sector). The real threat is can be seen in the history of Argentina – decade after decade of minimal net improvement punctuated by political and economic crises which never seem to resolve anything in a salutary direction.

    Heinlein’s is an aynrandesque reverie and not true to our situation.

  5. Like most disasters that confront humanity Art, poverty, after a certain technological level is achieved, is usually man made. Recent examples I can think of off the top of my head would include the expulsion of the Indians from Uganda and the expropriation of their property in 1972 which was a disaster for the Ugandan economy. Zimbabwe, one of the more agriculturally fertile regions in Africa, is now subject to recurrent threats of famine due to the fecklessness of the government of Robert Mugabe. The lamentable history of Communism is an example of Heinlein’s statement in action, except where there is a turning away from the doctrines of Marx as has occurred in China. Cuba is a prime example of what happens when a country drives away its business class.

    In our country there are complete fools, most if not all located in the Democrat party, who would love to give further proof to Heinlein’s observation. The Occupy movement has degenerated into bad farce, but the Democrats were initially quite happy with their 99%-1% jeremiads. California is a prime example of what economic quicksand an anti-business and anti-growth mentality can produce.

    A pro-business mentality is a rare thing in global history, and governments have often adopted policies that have destroyed prosperity. In the Church, sadly, it is not rare to see troubling manifestations of this type of anti-free enterprise mentality:


    No, I think Heinlein is correct.

  6. Your two examples include one of the most lunatic autocrats of the post-war period and another president-for-life quite possibly mad from tertiary syphilis. These are not common problems.

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