Catching up with whereaminow, Part II
Ok so where was I before I passed out from two glasses of wine (I'm a cheap date). Ah yes, the trolls.
Trolling Down Memory Lane
Those who have followed me for years know that I've had a long and interesting relationship with trolls. My first troll was probably SocialConscious, who was just super convinced that
1. everything in this world was about racism and sexism caused by freedom
2. racism and sexism can be solved by our God the State, which should beat, threaten, intimidate, and cage anyone who had a racist or sexist thought.
After SC disappeared, others would pop up. (I'd like to link to all my favorite troll conversations, but Motley Fool's search function is terrible and I'm not going to go through every blog to find them.) Remember Lucas1983? He was some South American climate student that also worshipped the State, hated the market, and believed the propaganda that climate modeling is real science. Anyone skeptical of this pseudo-scientific hogwash was a neo-confederate, racist, redneck, creationist, insert perjorative here that needed to be silenced. Ah the goold old days when anyone who questioned the climate modeling community was smeared endlessly.
I took my turn at trolling as well, much to the chagrin of some of my followers who thought I should use my talents for better purposes. After years of being trolled, I wanted to know why they did it. It turns out, they do it for simple amusement. Sadly, once you figure trolls out and you learn how to deal with them, they move on to annoy other writers who can't deal with them. I kind of miss my trolls.
Trolling doesn't only happen on the Internet. Piers Morgan is a TV troll. The night of Sandy Houk this piece of human excrement gets on his bully pulpit to push his State-worshipping gun ban agenda (for the children, of course.) Over the next couple weeks, his arguments with various gun-rights advocates boils down to repeatedly calling them idiots in response to arguments and facts. And of course, none of the gun grabbers ever point out notice that:
1. Guns were already banned where the tragedy occured.
2. All these killers seem to be on psychotropic drugs issued to them by government licensed psychiatrists.
(We can find Michael Jackson's doctor guilty, but we can't go after this drug pushing shrinks? Nope, because government is owned by Big Pharma.)
Piers Morgan is a troll. He trolls for the State for his own amusement. Once you realize that, he will go away. And then we'll miss him.
I've always been harder on liberals than conservatives, but I think everyone who reads my blogs knows that I am no fan of either movement. It's partly a common ground issue that I bash chicken hawk conservatives less. I have about 14% agreement with the modern day conservative and about 2% with the modern liberal.
But there's something else that gets me riled up about the Progressive movement in America.
You Know What Really Grinds My Gears
What really gets me about the modern day Progressive is the sheer intellectual arrogance with which they carry themselves. They and only they care for science. They and only they care about the children. They and only they care about racism and sexism. They and only they are enlightened enough to not need silly things like religion. They and they alone have a thoughtful and peaceful foreign policy solution.
Let's start in Church. As I've said before, Progressives have merely replaced God in Church with God in the State. The State is infinite and all-powerful and all-knowing. It was here before they were born and it will remain so for infinity. There is no use in arguing whether the State should exist. It is.
Like the God of Church, the God of the State has one extremely difficult to understand flaw. Each day, week, month, the God of the State receives income. It seems to have an unlimited supply of income. And yet, this God is always broke and asking for more. Seems awfully familiar to another God I know.
Getting Progressives to understand that they've merely swapped one God for another is probably the most difficult task in any libertarian-liberal argument. This is particularly true among the so-called intellectuals of the State, the professors and media experts who are just so scientific that a simpleton like me could never understand their sheer brilliance.
As for science, I've found the best approach is to get to them on the health blogs.
You see, health and nutrition science is about as close to real science as Lennay Kekua was to being a real girlfriend. (Sorry, had to get one in there.) When Progressives are taught how horribly the government and corporate cronies have botched science over the last 60 or so years, leading to the most unhealthy society in human history, it opens the door a bit. They may not completely give up their faith in the equally flawed climate science, but they stop being so in-your-face evangelical about it.
Tip: start with the China Study. It's the most obvious case of researcher bias and flawed scientific methodolgy. The best part? The results of the study actually support the exact opposite of the researcher's conclusion, but he didn't understood that because he wasn't much of a statistician. Seriously, research the China Study. It's like getting pushed down the rabbit hole. When you're done, you will learn that most people in the soft sciences have no idea how science works.
The Gilded Age versus the Fiat Age
One study I would like to do if I had a little more time is to compare the American period of 1873-1913 with 1971-2011. Here are two interesting forty year periods in American history with radically different politics and economic systems, which would provide us with some insight into the effects of those systems.
Of course, no empirical study is a proof of anything but they can be useful if the economist is up fron about the shortfalls of the study. Statistics from the 1800's are unreliable, sometimes completely missing. And empirical studies do not have controls, which allow scientists in other fields to isolate causal links. Economic theory, unfortunately, cannot be proven using statistics.
Side note: always beware the charlatan who presents economic statistics without the caveats I just mentioned. Paul Krugman is infamous in the Internet community for using this method, which essentially boils down to "here's a graph... haha, Republicans are dumb."
But these two periods I selected present us with an opportunity. We have now had 40 years (and change) with a complete separation of the dollar from any real underlying money. Though the Federal Reserve continues to be the greatest hoarder in human history (they've been sitting on how many tons of gold for how long? And they're economists are worried that you might hoard stuff. C'mon... what jokers...), the real money - the gold - has been officially severed from the dollar since 1971.
On the other hand, 1873-1913 is a nice 40 year run during which the United States was on the classical gold standard. In 1873, the federalis finally made good on their promise to redeem Abe Lincoln's paper war money (Lincoln is another God the Progressives worship, but on MLK day I don't want a bunch of them calling me a racist closet-slave-owner just because I've read that Lincoln was a corrupt warmonger, so let's move on.) Although the American classical gold standard was not a perfect free market in money (the Feds had outlawed private bank notes during the War, giving the 8 New York banks an essential cartel which they used to inflate the US Dollar and distort the economy), it was close enough for our purposes.
Like I said, if I had more time, I'd love to dig into this compare and contrast. We are obviously better off today than we were 40 years ago. And so were the people of 1913 better off than those of 1873. That simple fact is uninteresting. The Russians were better off in 1989 than they were in 1919 economically, too. But that doesn't mean the system worked. (Unless you understand that the point of the system was total power and total control, which in that case, it worked just fine. But I digress...)
So till next time, enjoy 2013 and make it a good one. Enjoy your smaller paycheck and tax hikes brought to you by State worshippers like TMF's writing staff. Enjoy the price inflation headed your way as the bubbles get blown up again. Enjoy them until the burst again and you're all out of work once more. Enjoy another round of Statists blaming the market and another round of ignorant liberals mocking anyone who dares think the government caused any of these bubbles.
Or better yet, just ignore the trolls and enjoy your own time here.
David in Liberty