Monday, January 09, 2012

Yeah... not buying what they're selling. And neither you should you.

KYFHO.  It's an acronym for "Keep Your Fucking Hands Off."  It's from a novel by Dr. F. Paul Wilson called "An Enemy of the State."  So before anyone accuses me of not understanding Libertarianism, please take the time to go fuck yourself.  The word is tattooed on my left shoulder.  As far as it goes, I still mean it.  You lay your hands on me without permission, you risk injury.

That said, I believe the philosophy of Ayn Rand and her followers is morally and intellectually bankrupt.  And, yes, I'm about to explain why.  Sit tight.

"Ron Paul will end the drug war."  Yep.  You're right.  Or, at least he'll try.  He'll order the federal agencies to stand down, citing whatever part of the Constitution he needs to cite in order to justify it.  I'm all for this--even though I don't really recommend the inhalation of certain substances.  Even so, the drug war is an expensive failure that's done nothing to curtail drug use and managed to disenfranchise a growing percentage of our minority population.  The problem with this is that there will be no money forthcoming for drug treatment.  None.  The onus would land on the states, who can't keep up with current obligations.  So the only people who'll get drug treatment are the ones who can pay for it up front.  How nice for them.

"Ron Paul will bring the troops home."  Yep.  And resist intervention anywhere else with every bone in his tired old body.  That's great.  I'm actually FOR an end to wars and our involvement in them.  Hope no one particularly anti-social gets rambunctious.  Because we won't intervene.  Good thing most of the real threats have been eliminated.  North Korea isn't likely to get particularly ambitious in the near future as the new ruler takes stock of his circumstances.  And Iran?  Not really a credible threat despite its saber rattling.

Good thing.

People scream about the corruption of the federal government (and gawd knows there's good reason for this) but then recommend Libertarian ideals as a way to counter this.  I've said it before... the smaller a government entity, the easier it is to corrupt.  It's a lot easier to pay off a town council, the police chief, and the mayor, than it is to buy a Congresscritter.  This is pretty obvious.

His supporters say that he'd give power back to the states, and allow them to do anything that didn't contradict the U.S. Constitution.  Not that there'd be any way to enforce that.  A conservative state could far more easily modify its own Constitution to, say, take away peoples right to marry someone of a different race, and the U.S. Constitution would not only not stop them, even if it did the feds would have no power to intervene.

They will also say that Libertarians would not allow pollution, would even be harder on it than liberals. So how does this work?  The local factory is churning out toxic waste and paying people to bury it somewhere beyond town.  It seeps into the ground water and the people can do--what?  Take it to the local Sheriff, whose beholden to the factory for his job?  Take it to the state, which has every reason not to aggravate a local employer?  And can't afford the funds to investigate it even if they wanted to?Right now they can take it to the feds, who have people who investigate this sort of thing, and labs for them to work out of.  You think the locals--half of which who are employed by said factory, have the money to hire scientists and labs to do the work determining the source of the toxin?

Good luck with that.

"It's not the government's job to subsidize intellectual curiosity."  This is a Reagan quote, but it typifies a conservative few of government.  It's in everyone's interest to have an educated populace.  The founding fathers--many of whom they claim to revere--believed that the only way to have a functioning democracy was to educate the populace.  They'll argue that the only reason college tuition has gotten so high is because it's subsidized by the government.  I say it's because we allow bankers to use our young people as a cash crop with which to grow even more money.  They say the federal government doesn't have any business in education at all.  But I say that universal standards are a good thing, and one of the problems we have now is that educational requirements vary so greatly from state to state.  NCLB notwithstanding.  That remains a kind of sick joke.  What it doesn't do is improve education.

Yeah.  I don't trust these people.  If you do, that's fine.  You're entitled to your own opinions.  But don't pretend we're crazy for not buying it.

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