Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Time to fiddle

 [from Joel]  Well, I've had enough.  I think that Plato was right.  There is an inevitable transformation of democracy into tyranny.  Democracy is unstable.  This last presidential election seems to have been a turning point.  Obama has had more strikes against him than any president preceding him (even Nixon), yet victory ensued.  Despite his failings in delivery on campaign promises, abuse of power, incompetence in foreign affairs, slow reaction to emergencies, lack of transparency and open-mike gafs, he pooled his 47% and party loyalists into a victory.  Republicans are unlikely in the future to find more favorable opportunity to retake the White House.  As Plato pointed out, the general population becomes corrupted by the goodies that they receive and are not likely to vote for a candidate that promises hardship and hard work.  I've opted out in the sense that I won't try to convince young people that their future is at risk.  Nor does it even make sense to follow the news.  Qué sera, sera.  I think I'll take up golf and learn to drink good wine while I play my fiddle..


Ira Glickstein said...

Joel, I too was quite down hearted by the results of the Presidential election. It seems to me the majority, by a percent or two, chose the guy who promised them "good stuff" for "free" not realizing that nothing is free for long and that the ultimate price for all this "free stuff" will be paid by all of us, and, especially, our children and grands.

However, I am not ready to give up as easily as you seem to be. I intend to continue to follow the news and do whatever I can to affect public policy and perceptions.

I think Romney, by any objective measure, was the very best candidate to help move our economic problems towards positive resolution. He is basically a moverate and has a good record of working with Democrats when he was Governor of Mass and they were in the overwhelming majority. Unfortunately, the tough Republican primary, where he was forced to steer to the right snd make some statements that were easy for the main-stream media to portray as extreme, and for the Democrats to use during the general election to paint him as a raving right-wing maniac.

And, for his part, Romney, in what ended up being an ill-fated attempt to gain some ground among single women, moderated his statements in the last two debates and in the last couple weeks of the camapaign, in the process losing some members of his base and some independents, and, in the end, still doing poorly with the single women.

But the election is over. "The people have spoken." Part of the social contract of good citizens in a Republic is that we respect decisions made by fair elections and our lawfully-elected representatives, even if they are, in our opinions, bad decisions.

In any case, I respect your decision to cool it, at least for a while. Perhaps you will change that decision - or perhaps, at some point I will have had enough and change mine.

Ira Glickstein

PS: PLEASE continue posting new Topics to this Blog.

AND, I wish the other Authorized Authors will also post new Topics.

This Blog has been getting over 100 page views a day for quite a while. So, even though our Topic postings may not get many comments, there is a good chance our stuff IS being read by dozens of people a day.

REQUEST TO ALL READERS: Please post Comments! We want to know you are there and would love for you to share your opinions, even if you do not agree with Joel or me (Ira). advTHANKSAnce

Tilo Reber said...

I'm going to have to go with Joel on this one Ira. I don't see much hope. For me it really doesn't matter, but I hate leaving my 10 year old daughter this mess.

As we all know, the inherent problem with democracy is that people will want to vote themselves other people's wealth. The only protection against that problem is if you have a population that has a sense of fairness, individualism, and pride in personal achievement.

If your goal is to push socialism, then your chances of success are enhanced if you can manage to undermine those values. To that end, we now have a culture where such values have, literally, been turned upside down.

Today, if you are very successful, the media and at least half of the political establishment, will paint you as the bad guy. Your hard work becomes greed and your achievement is painted as being luck, crooked dealing, and stepping on the little guy. If you are a goof off and a failure, then it's not your fault, but rather it is bad luck, the greedy taking advantage of you, and injustice and inequality in society.

In this way, the value system has been reversed so that the characteristics that we used to admire are now painted as evil and those that we used to avoid are painted as virtue. So, today, we have allowed the media and the politicians to convince us that it is actually moral and a social duty to vote ourselves other people's money. We have let them convince us that the successful must be punnished for their wickedness and that the failures are only failures because they are moral.

It seems almost unbelievable that we could allow ourselves to be so badly diluded. But, really, you need only look at the mind of a Taliban or a citizen of North Korea to see how far from the truth it is possible to lead entire populations.

joel said...

I think that the failure to unseat Barack Obama is not an ordinary electoral loss. It is a sign that a long term trend in the body politic has finally taken hold. The demise in Republicanism described by Plato has reached its tipping point. Conservative principles are always at a disadvantage and although they surge from time to time, we can see the inevitable democrat tide sweep over the country over the past hundred years. For instance, the Supreme Court slowly has moved the law to the left. There is kind of a ratchet effect. Whenever the appointed justices lean left they "advance" the interpretation of the constitution in that direction. On the other hand, when the justices lean right, they are none-the-less bound by their conservative respect for precedent which prevents them from overturning decisions of a previous left wing court. The same sort of ratchet effect exists with respect to the use of Executive Orders to legislate without going through Congress (as already threatened by Obama).

Ira Glickstein said...

FYI: Here are the statistics for the "top ten" for the period from a week ago to this moment. Note that three out of the ten are by Joel or JohnS, and not Ira. (Pageviews are the last number in each Topic statistic block):

Climate Change (AKA Global Warming)
Jan 27, 2011, 16 comments 109

Sunspots - Prediction of New "Dalton Minimum" Dec 20, 2010, 11 comments 63

Steve Jobs RIP - Our first and most recent Apples Oct 6, 2011 27

CLEAN Coal! (Say WATT?) Nov 30, 2010, 7 comments 21

QR Code - Scan Me! Apr 16, 2011, 3 comments 17

Ancient Physics - Plato and Aristotle May 7, 2010, 2 comments 15

My Guest Postings on Watts Up With That? Dec 25, 2010, 39 comments 14

JOEL'S TOPIC: Time to fiddle Jan 2, 2013, 1 comment 13

JOHNS'S TOPIC: Constitutional Convention Oct 17, 2010, 3 comments 12

JOEL'S TOPIC: Brain White Matter Connections for Intelligence an...
Feb 6, 2010, 12

Ira Glickstein