Category Archives: Political Economy

UPDATED: If They Can’t Kill Directly, US Neocons Steal From Iranians To Starve ‘Em

Barack Obama, Foreign Policy, Iran, Justice, Middle East, Military, Neoconservatism, Political Economy

If they are not permitted to invade countries not theirs, US neoconservative, Deep-State establishments, like the U.S. Justice Department, find ways to kill indirectly.

From their standpoint, American men and matériel should be allowed to reach all corners of the world. If they can’t move in directly for the kill, these mercenaries will find ways to kill indirectly.

The neoconservative faction is unperturbed by the fact that Iran has been crippled economically; that millions live below the poverty line there because of constant economic sanctions, cheered by chubby Michael Pompeo, US secretary of state.

Likewise, under Barack Obama’s reign of terror abroad—the Iranian currency lost 65 percent of its value and endured a SWIFT and devastating eviction from the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication.

Iranians are starving, due to sanction. So, what does the US do? Steal the oil they own and are trying to sell to stay alive.

On Friday, the DoJ announced the U.S. had seized more than 1.1 million barrels of petroleum, owned by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps, from four merchant tankers bound for Venezuela.

“The government announced today that it has successfully executed the seizure order and confiscated the cargo from all four vessels, totaling approximately 1.116 million barrels of petroleum. With the assistance of foreign partners, this seized property is now in U.S. custody,” reads a statement from the Department of Justice.
“These actions represent the government’s largest-ever seizure of fuel shipments from Iran.”

… A seizure order for the cargo from all four vessels was issued by U.S. District Court Judge Jeb Boasberg of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia,” reads the statement.

The nature of the political dispensation in Iran is none of America’s business. Poverty and hunger are widespread in “rich” America. Iranians do not fix on invading us and replacing our immiserating leaders.

Image: 57 Million Below the Poverty Line

UPDATE (8/17):
Facebook has censored my anti-starving-Iran post: https://lnkd.in/grX-57k My anti-starving-and-stealing-from-Iran blog post is here. Who would have thunk? It’s a pretty conventional, anti-starving-Iranian position, common among principled libertarians

Iranians have not killed and maimed and terrorized Americans; Saudi Arabians have!! For another, why suddenly such belief in what US intelligence “says” a/b anything? Lastly: regional conflicts. Let Israel & Saudis police their neighborhoods.

How Dramatically Did Women’s Suffrage Change the Size and Scope of Government?

Democracy, Elections, Feminism, Gender, Political Economy, The State

In 2007, I ventured that, “I’d give up my vote if that would guarantee that all women were denied the vote.”—ILANA Mercer (August 8, 2007)

Coming from the anti-statist stance, the sentiment is a solid one. It’s anchored in data.

One only has to trace the statistically significant correlation between women’s suffrage and the change in the size and scope of the state, as did John R. Lott, Jr. (Yale University) and Lawrence W. Kenny (University of Florida), to realize that the female suffrage has undermined the small-government project.

How Dramatically Did Women’s Suffrage Change the Size and Scope of Government?” is in the Journal of Political Economy (Vol. 107, Number 6, Part 1, pp. 1163-1198, December 1999).

Of course, the tipping point has long been reached, so my altruistic gesture would be in vain.

Naturally, some will laud the growth of government under female tutelage; others will lament it.

Abstract

This paper examines the growth of government during this century as a result of giving women the right to vote. Using cross-sectional time-series data for 1870 to 1940, we examine state government expenditures and revenue as well as voting by U.S. House and Senate state delegations and the passage of a wide range of different state laws. Suffrage coincided with immediate increases in state government expenditures and revenue and more liberal voting patterns for federal representatives, and these effects continued growing over time as more women took advantage of the franchise. Contrary to many recent suggestions, the gender gap is not something that has arisen since the 1970s, and it helps explain why American government started growing when it did.

And look at these excerpts with their bold deductions. The following writers would have been “canceled” by the bumper crops of cretins who control the American intelligentsia (that is not very intelligent).

It  is  not  really  surprising  that  this   welfare  state  should   breed   a politics  not  of  “justice”  or  “fairness”  but  of  “compassion,”  which contemporary  liberalism  has  elevated  into   the  most   important  civic virtue.  Women  tend  to  be  more  sentimental,   more  risk-averse   and less  competitive  than  men—yes,   it’s   Mars   vs.   Venus—and   therefore are  less  inclined   to   be  appreciative   of  free-market  economics,   in which   there   are   losers   as   well   as   winners.   College-educated women—the  kind  who  attend  Democratic  conventions—are   also more   “permissive”    and   less    “judgmental”    on    such    issues    as homosexuality,  capital  punishment,  even  pornography.

—Irving  Kristol,  “The  Feminization  of  the  Democrats,” The Wall Street Journal (September 9, 1996): p. A16

Citing   marriage   as   “a   very   important   financial   divider,”   the American   Enterprise   Institute’s   Doug   Besharov    suggests    more married women did not  vote  for  Dole because of a widespread sense of societal insecurity: “It is not that  they  distrust  their  husband,  but they  have  seen  divorce  all  around  them  and  know  they  could  be next.”  The  Polling  Company’s  Kellyanne  Fitzpatrick  is  categorical: “Women  see  government  as  their  insurance.”  (Perhaps  significantly,  of the  24 million  individuals  working  in  government  and  in  semi-governmental  non-profit  jobs,  14  million—58  percent—are  women.)

—The Richmond Times Dispatch, December 5, 1996

THE REST.

 

China Vs. Uncles Sam And Gates

America, China, Critique, Globalism, Nationalism, Paleolibertarianism, Political Economy, Republicans, Science, The State, The West

I understand the honest, plaintive anger expressed below by American Greatness reader Major Rage, directed at my argument in Who Invited The World To Infect America?” (“Hate the Chinese government if you wish, but hold your own government responsible for hollowing America out like a husk.”)

The reader had done everything right. He’s a good, obedient American who has served Uncle Sam. And now I’m suggesting he reconsider; that he consider turning on Uncle Sam and its corporate-industrial-complex.

I’m disturbed by this article because at the end of it – I felt as though I was supposed to hate myself……as if I had betrayed my family and community. But, I don’t recall ever doing such evil things.

I’ve served my country, started and run a legitimate and profitable business, paid taxes out the ying-yang, put my children through good schools and universities, been faithful to my wife, and generally stayed out of trouble.

Now, a foreign sourced plague has been introduced into our lives – threatening our existence and livelihoods and I’M SUPPOSED TO FEEL GUILTY! Guilty……for what? For not stopping the rich from becoming richer? For not exposing the corrupt for conniving and cheating society? For not preventing mad scientists from monkeying with Mother Nature? For not standing at the jetway with a gun to prevent immigrants coming into my country?

Please tell me, Ilana Mercer, WTF am I guilty of?

The answer is that NO ONE OUTSIDE OF WUHAN OR BEIJING is guilty in this affair. Feelings of guilt are nearly identical to feelings of shame for being a helpless victim. On reflection – this writer strikes the absolute wrong chord by suggesting that we, ourselves, are to blame for this disaster. How can the victims be to blame? She suggests we did this horrible thing to ourselves. But, did we? NO. I’m outraged at the mere suggestion. No one is going to put the crown of thorns on my brow.

Ms. Mercer……take your guilt trip and shove it!

Not a word did the article say about ordinary Americans betraying their own. To that end, “Who Invited The World To Infect America?” was even divided into clear thematic headings that made that clear:

Trade Goods, Not Places (allusion to top-down population replacement)
Economic Elephantiasis
(the endless expansionism of the American multinational)
No Multiculturalists in China
(self-evident: Chinese are a homogeneous, chauvinistic people) 
Where Accountability Goes to Die
(Uncle Sam’s “investigation” of COVID)

But I fully understand “Major Rage’s” rage. He wanted the warm smell of the herd—he wanted to hear amplified (as from most other pundits) that it was China v. America: “USA, USA, USA!”

Instead he was challenged thus:

If the United States must rely on the Chinese government to keep its citizens safe, then what kind of a Micky Mouse country is it?
If the American people can be convinced by their government to saddle a foreign power with the responsibility for their existential welfare—what kind of people are we?
China didn’t force the traitors of the American economy to shift crucial production lines to its country and strand Americans without surgical and N-95 masks and medication; homegrown turncoats made that decision, all by their lonesome.

Less do I understand Dan @ Twitter @deltajulietx
Apr 30
Replying to @IlanaMercer

Ilana, are you losing your way? What price liberty? 61,349? 250,000? 1 million? Etc? What was it that Benjamin Franklin said about exchanging liberty for (imagined) safety? I would reflect long and hard before sacrificing liberty to any government for any reason. Full stop!

Dan was reacting to this:

On March 31, the number of Americans dead from the Chinese coronavirus stood at 3,900! A mere month on, at the time of writing, and 63,801 Americans have perished.

American deaths by COVID-19 account for a quarter of the world’s, including those in the undeveloped world. To ignore this Third-World-like specter is to dismiss the dead and the dying. It’s tantamount to cancel culture.

Dan, like many, conflates the honoring of the dead, the seriousness of the disease and the magnitude of COVID devastation with betraying liberty. In Dan’s cohort, unless you put on a tinfoil hat about COVID science–you are considered a liberty hater. Crap. Unless you dismiss the dead, you are betraying the Great Leader.

Since I wrote the lede to my essay, the number of Americans dead by COVID has reached 68,602. 4801 souls dead in three days. Rest in peace.

* Photo via iStock. Thanks for fair use.

Pandemic Preparedness And America’s Mañana Mentality

COVID-19, Debt, Economy, Free Markets, Healthcare, Political Economy, The State

The dynamics of state regulation and ownership aside, there is no ignoring our American mañana mentality. Consume in the present; worry not at all about tomorrow’s supplies.

Doesn’t that epitomize the state of America’s coronavirus pandemic reserves?

Via the LA Times: “A disaster foretold: Shortages of ventilators and other medical supplies have long been warned about.”

The nation needed larger caches of standby medical supplies and hospitals that were better prepared to handle a surge of infected patients.

A decade later, the coronavirus crisis is exposing many of the same gaps. Inadequate supplies of protective masks, ventilators, intensive care beds and other medical resources are forcing mass closures of schools and businesses and restrictions on everyday activities as public officials rush to slow the virus so America’s medical system isn’t overwhelmed.

the Government Accountability Office … the federal government’s leading internal watchdog, has issued a steady stream of reports about poor pandemic planning. …

The GAO, public health experts and others issued a steady drumbeat of warnings that America would sooner or later face a widespread infectious disease outbreak or a major bioterrorism attack and was woefully unprepared. …

… In both 2018 and 2019, U.S. intelligence agencies issued insistent warnings in their annual Worldwide Threat Assessment.

“We assess that the United States and the world will remain vulnerable to the next flu pandemic or large-scale outbreak of a contagious disease that could lead to massive rates of death and disability, severely affect the world economy, strain international resources, and increase calls on the United States for support,” the 2019 report noted.

AND, Making the case for investments in material and hospital planning has long been challenging as most people have difficulty envisioning a major disaster, acknowledged Dr. Eric Toner of Johns Hopkins University, an authority on pandemic preparedness.”

Hospitals also are under pressure to keep margins thin and eliminate spending on staff and supplies that aren’t used all the time.

And, in government-regulated hospitals, which are the majority in the US,

The budget crunch represents a particular challenge for so-called safety-net hospitals, institutions that serve many uninsured patients and those covered by Medicaid, and consequently collect less revenue. These same hospitals are now expecting a large surge in coronavirus patients but have limited resources to ramp up staffing and add intensive care beds if needed.

“Cash is very limited,” said Charlie Shields, chief executive of Truman Medical Centers in Kansas City. Shields said the finances are under even more stress since the hospital canceled elective procedures and shut down its dental services to prepare for the pandemic, moves that reduce hospital revenue.

In case you imagine the US has a free-market in medicine, here are a few statistics that’ll shock you, via The Economist:

The country has over 6,000 hospitals. Only 1,300 or so are private for-profit institutions; the rest are non-profit or government-run. The lack of an overt profit motive has done little to rein in prices …

In any event, the defining characteristic of the Unites States is debt—public and private, macro and micro. America is a debtor nation. A natural shift must take place in the economy from a credit-fueled, consumption-based economy, to one founded on savings, investment and production.