Don’t Think of a Purple Elephant

What did I just say?

Society exists in a competition of self interests with community interests. Even if it takes a village to raise a child, you are still responsible for your own kid. Some governments work for the interests of a single ruler. Others abide by the wishes of the citizens. Mostly, people with little interest in the workings of government elect people with a great deal of interest in government. Then the voters wonder how they got fleeced by politicians. The price of liberty is eternal vigilance, and that means vigilance toward the government as well as toward others.

No system is perfect. The people who extol the virtues of capitalism admire its resilience. Socialism takes work, but when things break down the free market takes over. At the same time, a free market can become a monster. Laws work, but the more laws there are against capitalism, the more loopholes there are. Christians say that their rules create freedom by setting boundaries. Capitalism needs boundaries, not a tax code full of ways to cheat.

Then there’s socialism. Budding socialists don’t want the kind of socialism where they are told where to live, what job to take, what to eat or how to entertain themselves. The socialist paradise for many is a vision of Nordic countries with homogenous populations, little industry and a democracy where people can still vote against their better interests. All those places survive on free market trade

The United States has the worst of both worlds right now. The Republicans have spent decades keeping taxes low without strictly enforcing limited spending. Democrats have argued for tax increases (on the “rich”) and failed to pass them when they are in power. Still, they refuse to cut spending, even though the rich don’t make enough to cover the budget shortfall even at a 90% rate. Then you have Nobel Prize winner (like Obama!) Paul Krugman saying we can go 30 trillion dollars into debt and still have bond holders. They’d better be aliens, because the whole world is broke right now.

Everyone is being told not to think of a purple elephant BY a purple elephant these days. Some government benefit programs can continue for years. Others are already broke on the way to collapsing entirely. Banks did a lot of shady deals. They also planned their deeds by making deals with the government that now pretends to regulate them. Our foreign policy consists of writing checks to some allies and giving free weapons and tactical support to others.

This is not a left/right problem. It’s not even a 1%/99% problem. It is a problem of denial. Both sides have valid points and are full of crap at the same time. The worst offenders are the ones who have been in Washington the longest. If we can’t get the people we want in office, we have to get the people we don’t want out of office. Don’t worry about which “evil” party they belong to. Most likely they are almost half right.

About 1539days

I'm like a word a day calendar for executive disasters.
This entry was posted in Corruption, Crony Capitalism. Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Don’t Think of a Purple Elephant

  1. DandyTiger says:

    Part of the problem is people on the side that’s in power don’t want to admit their guy or group sucks. 30% of repubs thought GWB was the best thing since sliced bread right up to the end, and a similar 30% of dems think Obama is all that and more. That’s tribalism of course. We really need to get even those at the crazy ends of the two tribes to wake up and stop drinking the purple elephant poop.

    And meanwhile, the more alert 40% should mess things up as much as possible if there aren’t better choices. Vote anyone in power out, just for the sake of it.

  2. Lulu says:

    Both parties, Congress, the courts, and the Presidency are cliques. They protect each other irregardless of what they do, how many laws they break, how little they serve the public. Unless some sort of sexual peccadillo is exposed by a muckraking press nothing is done because it is a protection racket. They appoint inside guys who will cover for other inside guys. It is government by mafia. They can fight each other over the most ridiculous irrelevant garbage but will never find each other guilty of theft, fraud, lying etc. Until they understand that that they will be in power for a very short time and be thrown out before they can gain much it will continue. Vote every damn one of them out.

  3. yttik says:

    Since Obama took office, I’ve participated in many debates about community versus individual rights, property rights versus the collective, horizontal decision making versus the system we have now. It’s all served to make me really appreciate this country and the effort that has gone into trying to create an equitable system. We have a really amazing balance between community rights and individual rights, between capitalism and socialism. The socialism part being public schools, social security, medicaid, fire depts, libraries, etc. I work with the poor and especially this time of year, American generosity is really obvious. In the private sector, there are so many volunteers giving their time and money to provide food bank baskets, toys for tots, coats for kids, energy assistance.

    As to purple elephants, one of the best presidencies we had was Bill Clinton’s with his Republican congress. The friction between them delivered us a booming economy and peace and prosperity. Clinton really did cut taxes for the working class anyway, with his home office deduction and expanded earned income credit program. He also reformed welfare and created child support collection. I really believe that the two parties are like a half a brain. Our problems cannot be reduced to simple talking points like “cut spending” or “tax the wealthy.” We need smart spending and wise taxes. When one party is in power, it’s like having half a brain running the country. We need balance and diversity.

  4. foxyladi14 says:

    Vote anyone in power out, just for the sake of it.
    sounds good to me 🙂

Comments are closed.