Category Archives: Intellectualism

Easy Street For Bernie; For Trump It’s A Horribly Hard Row To Hoe

Democrats, Donald Trump, Intellectualism, Intelligence, Paleolibertarianism, Republicans

The Trump Revolution: The Donald’s Creative Destruction Deconstructed must be quite a good read. I’ve caught my husband red-handed with a copy and a big grin on his face (unusual—the grin, I mean—since he works for Microsoft).

And, of course, Jack Kerwick is mining The Donald’s Creative Destruction. Most reviewers seek confirmation of their worldview in a work. If they find an unknown quantity; the ego gets in the way of dealing. Kerwick is unusual in his intellectual curiosity, never afraid to joust with ideas, never threatened by them.

The dangers of being too open about Trump in conservative circles don’t deter him either. (Actually, some conservative websites are proving very competitive in the marketplace of ideas—their young millennial editors adapting to the new political landscape and embracing renegades far quicker than some libertarian sites. Kudos.)

In any case, in his latest TownHall column, Kerwick uses The Trump Revolution to drive home an important point I’ve not heard made before: “Bernie Sanders Is No Donald Trump.” To listen to the moron media, you’d think otherwise.

… For obvious reasons, this libertarian defense of the Trump process—the first of its kind—couldn’t be timelier. There is, however, another reason as to why it’s so critically important to read The Trump Revolution.

Contrary to conventional wisdom, Bernie Sanders is not the Democrats’ counterpart to Trump. This is among the many points that Mercer makes in her fine work. Consider the following:

The difference, though, is that Trump has exposed—and defeated—this corruption.

Sanders, in glaring contrast, has acquiesced in it, for he is now urging his supporters—who, by the sounds of it, are much more principled than he—into voting for Hillary Clinton.

Secondly, Sanders hardly accomplished what Trump has accomplished—and what Trump continues to accomplish. Sanders won 22 states in his contest against Clinton. But it was only a two person race, he had been a politician in the Senate for nearly a quarter of a century, had virtually nothing but good press, and his rallies weren’t repeatedly disrupted by violent thugs.

Trump, on the other hand, a business mogul and “reality TV star,” came out of nowhere. Derided and marginalized by “the experts,” this “clown” and “buffoon,” a million-to-one-shot underdog, slayed 16 of the GOP’s best and brightest, including some of its most popular senators and governors. These were the party’s rock stars—and Trump relegated them to the ranks of the Has Beens one after the other. …

Kerwick counts 7 major differences between what the brave-heart Trump has endured—Trump still has a horribly hard row to hoe ahead—as compared to Sanders’s easy street, and ends the column thus:

Bernie Sanders has had nothing like the bumpy road that Trump has had to travel. Ilana Mercer compares the two in her own inimical way: Sanders is “a mouse of a man” compared to the “masculine force at full tilt” that is Trump.

Bernie Sanders Economics: The Reason Venezuela Is Starving

Communism, Economy, Individual Rights, Individualism Vs. Collectivism, Intellectualism, Private Property, Socialism

If you plant a Bernie Sanders sign in your yard—a man who has promises variations on price controls and nationalization of industries—you should suffer the worst of fates. The problem: Everybody will be affected by your emotions-driven economic and ethical ignorance—ignorance of the natural laws of economics and oblivion to the rights of free individuals to freely exchange titles to private property. In Bernie style, shortages will be blamed on “evil producers.” Further incursions will follow as “evil producers” are roped into bondage by the state. As such interventions beget more of the same, we will end up with the “Venezuela Playbook: The Communist Manifesto.”

… This choice between “fair” prices and arrest is now the norm for business owners in Venezuela. The most outrageous instance of this took place in early November, when government security forces occupied local electronics stores and began handing out TVs and other wares at “fair” (read: rock-bottom) prices. Hebert Garcia, head of the High Commission for the People’s Defense of the Economy, put it bluntly: “We have to guarantee that everybody has a plasma television and the latest-generation fridge.”
Not surprisingly, the masses lined up around the block for their piece of the government’s action. Too bad the government has failed to provide enough electricity to power the plunder. In most countries, this would be called government theft. But, under Maduro’s reign of Marxism, this redistribution has become business as usual. …

Discussion on Facebook.

Michael Walls: The fact that communism appeals so heavily to “intellectuals” is disturbing. Socialism is just “communism lite”, and the communism that socialism derived from is so absurd in it’s details it’s hard not to laugh out loud reading it. Maybe we need to re-examine the term “intellectual”.

Ilana Mercer No, Michael Walls, the fact that some communists are deemed or called “heavily intellectual” is what’s disturbing—disturbing for what it says on how we judge intellect. Your conclusion is 100%.

Educate yourself by reading.

Kerwick: Where’s One Of Paleolibertarianism’s Most Prolific Writers In Book About Dissident Right?

Conservatism, Ilana Mercer, Intellectualism, libertarianism, Old Right, Paleolibertarianism

What is he thinking? Author, columnist and academic Jack Kerwick is incorrigibly honest, intellectually honest. Doesn’t he know it’ll get him nowhere?

In a column at Beliefnet.com, “Missing ‘Right-Wing Critic of American Conservatism,'” Dr. Kerwick suggests that the omission of one ilana mercer from a new book entitled Right-Wing Critics of American Conservatism is a grave one.

A “discussion of ‘paleolibertarianism’—an oft-neglected variant of the classical liberal perspective from the genuine right,” ventures Kerwick, “could’ve been vastly enriched had only [its author, George Hawley], said a thing or two about a specific paleolibertarian writer whose omission from his exposition struck this author [Kerwick] as glaring.”

“That writer is Ilana Mercer.”

” … There are three reasons why it is imperative that Mercer be included in any discussion of paleolibertarianism”:

First, and most obviously, she is a paleolibertarian—and a tireless one at that. For decades, this defender of the paleolibertarian vision has published a couple of books and thousands of articles and blog posts in which she’s shattered not only leftist pieties but neocon and “libertarian-lite”(left-wing libertarian) sureties as well. Much blood, sweat, and tears, to say nothing of opportunities for professional advancement, has Mercer foregone in her campaign against the idols of our Politically Correct age.

Second, not only is Mercer a veteran paleolibertarian writer. She is unquestionably the most visible, the most widely read, of such contemporary writers. At one point, she was nationally syndicated by Creators Syndicate, and for nearly the last 20 years, WorldNetDaily (WND), a site that boasts roughly 1 million visitors a month, has featured Mercer’s weekly column, “Return to Reason”—its “longest standing, exclusive, paleo-libertarian weekly column.”

In addition to WND, Mercer’s work has been showcased in a plethora of outlets, both internationally and stateside, and she’s currently a fellow at the Jerusalem Institute for Market Studies.

No paleolibertarian—to repeat, a rightist proponent of a tradition-grounded classical liberal ideal—has nearly as much exposure when it comes to scholarly and popular audiences alike as does Mercer.

Third, Ilana Mercer is a woman. Moreover, she is a Jewish woman, the daughter of a Rabbi who was raised in both South Africa and Israel. This is no insignificant detail: Mercer is a standing repudiation of the stereotype, all too easily reinforced by her exclusion from any study of “right-wing critics of American conservatism,” that such critics are exclusively elderly white men. …

OUCH.

Read the rest. “Missing ‘Right-Wing Critic of American Conservatism” is on Beliefnet.com

UPDATE II: NRO Writer’s ‘UnFollow’ Leads To Musing About The Manners-Morals Connection

Conservatism, Donald Trump, Etiquette, Ilana Mercer, Intellectualism, libertarianism, Morality, Neoconservatism

National Review’s Kevin Williamson, aforementioned, once told me he was a libertarian anarchist. Although I never saw evidence for the claim, I took him at his word that he was a friend behind enemy lines. (It’s also true that I don’t study NRO’s output.) In the couple of exchanges we had, Williamson seemed far less uptight about intellectual differences than most Americans. Myself, so long as ad hominem is avoided and respect is shown—I can easily befriend ideological adversaries. And I do. One of the nicest gentlemen, for example, is Benn Steil, director of International Economics Council on Foreign Relations. I can’t imagine Dr. Steil churlishly unFollowing me. We differ. So what? I enjoyed his book, “The Battle of Bretton Woods,” immensely.

The UnFollow/UnFriend churlishness is not the province of neoconservatives and Republicans alone.

From experience, libertarians can be as uncivilized in their interactions. The column “Schooling Beck On Trump’s Nullification Promise” mentions “Ivan Eland’s learned rundown of U.S. presidents,” Recarving Rushmore: Ranking the Presidents on Peace, Prosperity, and Liberty. I contacted Eland as a courtesy. As did I ask him if he would kindly reciprocate with a Follow on Twitter. Unlike the polite Lawrence W. Reed of the Foundation for Economic Freedom, Eland has simply ignored me. Perhaps he’s on vacation.

Manners are a species of morals. Other than to hate mail or rude mail, I respond to all letters I receive—to each and every one. Many thousands since 1998, which is when I got my first newspaper column, in Canada. Due to time constraints, my replies are laconic. But if a reader has bothered to read my work and comment on what I have to say—then it’s only decent and proper to reciprocate.

I haven’t always been firm in this resolve, but I try my very best. If a colleague writes, I reply, whether I like them and their stuff or not. Ignoring a correspondent demonstrates contempt for that individual—a contempt that reflects on the rude “interlocutor.”

UPDATE (1/24): Facebook readers dispute the characterization of Williamson as remotely intellectual.

Christoph Dollis: Well, I’ve always known Kevin Williamson as a moron. Sorry that it hurts, and I get that (I’ve had similar experiences), but in my long-held opinion about Mr. Williamson, you haven’t lost much. I’m pretty sure Williamson is a staunch friend of arch cuckservative Ed Morrissey of Hot Air. ‘Nuff said.”

UPDATE II (3/5):