Category Archives: The State

FAKE NEWS’ New Frontier: Against Any Efficient Reallocation Of Resources

Argument, Classical Liberalism, COVID-19, Democrats, Economy, Government, Natural Law, Propaganda, The State

The deeply silly Washington post has one of its anti-Trump “scoops”: ICE special response teams were freed up to respond to the June riots, ongoing. OMG! You wouldn’t want to optimize the people’s resources to save their resources, now would you?

Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) used a flight charter service reserved for the transportation of detainees to move tactical teams to Washington, D.C., to help quell protests on June 2 in the capital, according to a report by The Washington Post.
To justify the flights, ICE transported immigration detainees from facilities in Arizona and Florida to its Farmville, Va., immigration jail, a current and former official told the publication.

Skim and consider the natural law: Is it not naturally licit for personnel who serve the people to be moved around so that they may better serve the people in another, more-urgent capacity?

At issue here are state rules: Why do state rules prohibit efficient allocation of resources? Because that’s the very definition of the state: Perversely inefficient allocation of scarce resources.

As to COVID: I, too, am concerned with COVID-19 spread, but COVID-prevention protocols have nothing to do with freeing up Immigration and Customs Enforcement to deal with riots. These are two separate issues, conveniently conflated here.

Outsourcing Life To The Expert Class: The Menace Of The Managerial Class

COVID-19, Family, Government, Pop-Psychology, Psychiatry, The State

In James Burnham’s Managerial State, explains , “political power moves away from … institutions like Congress and toward the executive bureaucracy … The effect is the reduction of nonmanagerial political institutions to increasingly nominal status. Forms of ‘constitutionalism’ may still be permitted to exist, but the managerial elite does not derive its power or legitimacy from them. It can, therefore, easily manipulate or simply ignore these institutions while pursuing its own ends.”

The managerial elite has given us our dysfunctional, atomistic, fragmented society, where traditional support systems no longer exist. To pick up the slack we have the Expert Class.

In a way, the insidious Expert Class that shapes and manages perceptions about public affairs is an extension of the Managerial State. The expert class tends to remove moral and medical decisions from individuals, families, and communities of faith by medicalizing problems of living.

Once, big-on-the-military actor James Wood got word about a veteran who was about to shoot himself in some remote location. So he galvanized the … experts. He got him “help.” He outsourced the problem.

Most people need not therapy but community.

The reason people are desperate and depressed is not because they don’t have a suicide hotline’s number handy or an AA support group buddy; but because they are bereft of family and community.

This simplest of logical deductions we are no longer even able to arrive at without outsourcing thinking to the generators of empirical evidence, the expert class.

Here is that “doh!” factor, confirmed by The Economist in, “A pandemic of psychological pain: How to reduce the mental trauma of covid-19″:

Humans are resilient. Those who experience trauma mostly cope. When their homes are destroyed by earthquakes, they rebuild them and carry on. Even the mass bombing of cities in the second world war did not break civilian morale. Nonetheless, the world should take the collective mental damage of covid-19 seriously. Steps to reduce it cost little, and can benefit not only individuals but also society more broadly.

Research into previous disasters suggests that survivors’ long-term mental health depends more on “perceived support” than “received support”. In other words, donations of money or food matter less than the feeling that you can turn to your neighbours for help. Such help is typically offered spontaneously, but governments can also chip in. France, for example, sets up “medical and psychological emergency units” after terrorist attacks and other disasters. These try to minimise the long-term mental-health consequences of such events by offering immediate walk-in psychological support near the site of the disaster. Several cities in France have reactivated this “two-tent model”, one for medical care and the other for mental care, to help people cope with the toll of the virus.

Some people draw comfort from the fact that they are not alone—millions are facing the same tribulations at the same time. But the pandemic also presents unusual challenges. No one knows when it will end. Social distancing makes it harder to reconnect with others, a step in recovering from trauma. And the economic shock of covid-19 has undermined mental-health services everywhere, but especially in poor countries.

The most important measures will be local. A priority should be bringing people together by, say, expanding internet access. Mutual-aid networks (eg, WhatsApp groups to deliver groceries to the elderly), which tend to peter out once the initial disaster subsides, should instead be formalised and focused on the most vulnerable. Mental-health professionals should connect patients to such services, and train more lay folk as counsellors. In Zimbabwe, well before the pandemic, hundreds of grandmothers were taught how to provide talk therapy on village benches to depressed neighbours who could not afford to visit a distant clinic. Such innovations can work elsewhere, too.

Should The Right Quit Gushing About The Military? Ya Think

Democrats, Left-Liberalism, Military, Republicans, The State

Most of you will have noticed how many of the military brass have aligned with the Left.

Via The Economist:

The armed forces—[once] a generator and focus of patriotic fervour—were 75% white in 1990; now around 45% of their members are from mostly Democratic-voting minorities. And just as Roosevelt was able to push his values by enlarging his coalition, so the extremism of the right is expanding the left. The many veterans, of all ethnicities, who ran for the Democrats in the 2018 mid-terms proved that.

A row between Tucker Carlson, a Fox News talking-head, and Senator Tammy Duckworth encapsulated these developments. Mr Carlson accused her of hating America after she expressed willingness to debate the appropriateness of celebrating George Washington, a slave-owner. Nonsense, said Ms Duckworth, a half-Asian former army pilot: her views reflected her commitment to “every American’s right to speak out”. She had fought for her country—and lost her legs—for that, she said.

MORE:

The politics of patriotism: Americans are becoming less vulnerable to flag-waving opportunists. This is bad for the president.

RELATED:

A Message To America’s Anti-Trump, Never-Won-A-War, Treacherous General Officers And Admirals.”

AND:

Un-gushing Columns

Strip Social Media’s Social Engineers Of Their State Grants-Of-Privilege

Argument, Business, Conservatism, Free Speech, Law, libertarianism, Republicans, Technology, The State

As ever, the political caste, in general, and “the party of industry and commerce,” in particular, has shown itself to be arrayed against Middle America.

How so?

An army of Covington Kids ought to have advanced on social media’s loathsome moral crusaders and censors. It can’t, because stripping the tech trolls of their state-grants of privilege has slipped down the order of business.

Depriving social media’s social engineers of their state grants-of-privilege seems more than reasonable.

Nobody conservative is arguing that “government should regulate content moderation of social media,” CATO Institute.

What is being advocated is that social-media censors be deprived of their state-grants of privilege and protections against liability. For social media are collective frauds. While acting as editors and social engineers, they are legally safeguarded as mere platform providers.

Under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, tech companies currently enjoy broad immunity from civil lawsuits stemming from what users post because they are treated as “platforms” rather than “publishers”.

Trump’s executive order is designed to pressure regulators, including the Federal Communications Commission and the Federal Trade Commission, to come up with new rules that would curtail that immunity. It is likely to face legal challenges. (The Guardian)

Look, laws exist. Too many of them. It would be great were there fewer of these laws. However, whether intended or not,  the upshot of corporate libertarianism is that laws only ever hamper the little guy and gal, never the multinational shyster and fraudster.

Naturally, conservatives must agree that unfettered speech is just that.  They can’t start carving out pet exceptions.