Just yesterday Fareed Zakaria and Bobby Gosh were on tv praising the rebels for not seeking revenge. The rebels were commended for not acting like Iraqis did in George Bush's war. Zakaria has no credibility left, if he even had any to start with. Plus, there is fighting going on between Gadhafi loyalists and the rebels. Someoen advising the rebels should have warned them when they entered Tripoli with little resistance -- Napaleon learned this lesson in Russia. The civil war in Libya is far from over, and it appears both sides are eager to murder and torture. There are no winners for us to pick, and this will certainly be no feather in Obama's golf cap.
Entries in Fareed Zakaria (8)
Morning Joe today was not all that interesting -- they mainly rehashed the talking points on the Left -- but what is interesting are the talking points and what they say about America. Al Sharpton, Sam Stein and a few others on the Left talked about jobs and short term spending. S.E. Cupp represented the Right point of view, sort of. The Morning Joe quests promoting short term stimulus spending are right within our current statist system, the only option open to us is more stimulus, because our statist system has prevented private sector excpansion and hiring. If we aren't going to make systemic changes which give businesses confidence, then all we can do is raise taxes and rely on government to create jobs. This is the current dilemma -- if we go forward with our current system and current regulatory push, we'll have high unemployment for years to come at around 8% if government spends money to create inffrastructure and green energy jobs, and in order to do this taxes will necessarily go higher to fund the spending.
The Left is saying that although government needs to get spending under control, now is not the time to cut spending, but if government continues on the statist path, there will be no good time to cut spending because we'll be in a state of constant stagnation requiring more and more taxes to pay for government efforts to prop up the economy as best they can. Currently, our system of government intervention in the economy doesn't allow for robust private sector growth, the creation of new innovative businesses or the creation of new wealth. Our system will attempt to redistribute the current amount of wealth, but there will be little creation of new wealth, at least not wealth that stays in the country and is invested in the country.
Our choices are between the current statist system or a free market. No one trusts that a free market will work, at least not enough people believe this currently to demand limitation of government power and a separation of State and Economy. We're stuck with a dependency on government intervention and the political class is currently demanding Big Things be done by government to create jobs. I've written many times here that this is what was building through all the debt crisis debate -- a huge campaign on the Left to take the next big step to consolidate statist power and complete the government's control of the economy. This might sound hyperbolic, but unless there's a concerted effort to stop the expansion of State power, it will grab more and more power -- the system is set on automatic for this to happen.
Republicans have resisted the expansion of State power recently, but, historically, Republicans have failed to follow through with their periodic resistance -- there has been Republican rhetoric but little real action to change the statist system and fight hard for a free market. Many Americans are still unclear about what a free market entails and think small tweaks to give the impression that government power is being curtailed at times are real -- they aren't real. In order to make systemic changes we need actions that the political class now calls radical and irresponsible. Progressives have staked there opposition to the Tea Party, and as Maxine Waters said, the Tea Party can go to hell and the progressives are prepared to help them go to hell. None of this was talked about on Morning Joe in these terms, but this is the underlying battle which presents our choices.
Later on Morning Joe, Rick Stengel brought his new rag issue of Time mag on and promoted Fareed Zakaria's article praising Obama's Libyan campaign as opposed to Bush's awful mistake in Iraq. Zakaria is declaring Libya a success which will become the model for future American interventions in foreign countries. It's a cheap video game whereby gamers bomb brown people and never get a scratch. It's surprising that Zakaria is praising such a dangerous turn in foreign interventions. Plus, we have no idea how Libya will turn out and how many more people have to die before the situation is somewhat settled -- so Zakaria's political opportunism is pathetic, yet Morning Joe guest chose to ignore Zakaria's cynical partisan disregard for real people in favor of a boost to Obama.
Zakaria and Krugman, Dumb and Dumber of the progressive pundit world, talk about important economic issues -- a faked alien invasion to get the economy going. Krugman digs a deeper hole every time he opens his mouth about our economy. This man won a Nobel Prize, but, then, so did Obama for "Peace".
Krugman, of course, is not suggesting a real faked alien invasion, but it's similar to demonizing some foreign nation so that we spend more and more money on defense. Hasn't this been done since the Cold War? Should we use 50% of our budget to build anti-alien spacecraft missiles? This would certainly help a certain portion of the public who's working in the defense industry and maybe some peripheral businesses, but it would certainly misdirect capital from productive sources to un-productive sources, and how long would this campaign to build missiles last? Wouldn't we have a lot less capital available to produce what we actually need, like, say, food and medicine? Or would we simply borrow the money -- but this competition for limited funds crowds out someone and drives up interest rates.
What happens when we can no longer borrow money? We print it right? There are so many things wrong with Krugman's plan, such as drawing talented people away from the hi-tech industries to build missiles we don't need -- misdirecting capital into a defense bubble -- inflation -- higher gas prices as the dollar is devalued -- not replacing consumption with useful products but rather useless missiles -- the depression of other parts of the economy that are productive to inflate a false part of the economy that's not based on true demand -- concerns from other countries that our military buildup is really for imperialist purposes -- the false signals sent out to entrepreneurs and business managers -- the risk of hyper-inflation and economic collapse -- the crash that will follow the end of the inflated production.
A real economist (I'm not even a fake economist) can come up with other objections, but it doesn't take much to see that Krugman is in a Keynesian mania phase that might be hell on the downside -- I'm worried about him.
Fareed Zakaria leads the way on a part of the Left narrative that frames conservatives and "rightist" libertarians as out of touch with reality, lost in a world of theory and ideology, attempting to fit reality into their ideological box rather than accepting reality as it is and reacting to it pragmatically. The new, ideological conservative, according to the narrative, believes lowering taxes and removing regulations will automatically make the economy better, but Zakaria tells us that taxes in America are relatively low, and, besides, Germany is doing quite well economically with high taxes and lots of regulation. Zakaria and his ilk are fond of pulling exceptions out of context to disprove theory, but exceptions don't necessarily disprove a theory, expecially without all the facts -- facts which Zakaria ironically claims conservatives love to ignore.
It's odd that Zakaria uses Germany as an example of his exception to theory -- Germany didn't fair too well during the 20th century and hasn't faired too well during much of the 21st, and it's doing fairly well right now because of marketing illusion and temporary stimulus in China. The "Made in Germany" ruse will come to an end, soon, and China's infrastructure stimulus, which has pumped up German exports, will come to an end, leaving Germany in a situation of severe recession. All statists want desperately for Germany and other statists nations to succeed so they can be used as examples of pragmatic technocratic management, but Germany's short term high will not last as long as government intervenes heavily in the economy -- Germany is no different from other failed statist countries, except their people are willing to work together and collectively sacrifice under statist control better than those silly freedom loving people in places like America. To be open minded, though, Germany could pull it off and defy empirical evidence, and I guess we could simply judge success by whether a country has done well in the last couple of years, but theory knows better.
It looks like theory is still standing after the 5th round.
On Zakaria's GPS, George Soros was interviewed. It was very strange. Zakaria accepted uncritically everything Soros put forth, even when what Soros said was contradictory and hypocritical. Soros claimed that the Egyptian Revolution was a spontaneous uprising of young people seeking democracy, when there has been plenty of evidence that the protests/revolution was planned over 2 years ago. Soros praised Obama for taking the side of the young people, but later when asked by Zakaria about Obama's response to Iranian protests, Soros praised Obama for being neutral because there doesn't need to be the impression of external pressure from the US against the Iranian regime. Soros said that if the Egyptian protests had happened during Bush's presidency, the US would have been seen as supporting a dictator, even though Bush pushed for freedom and democracy in the region. Zakaria said nothing about the contradictory positions.
When Zakaria asked Soros about Obama's handling of the economy, Soros said Obama has lost control of the agenda and that Republicans are applying ideological warfare to destroy social programs.
The strangest part of the conversation was when Zararia brought up Glenn Beck and Fox News. I watched Beck's weeklong expose of Soros, and Beck was as balanced as he could be presenting the information, and, by using Soros's own words, Beck was correct in questioning Soro's motives in building an "Open Society". What Zakaria did was show a clip taken out of context, and accused Beck of saying Soros harmed jews when Soros was a young man -- this claim by Beck appears ridiculous if you don't know the whole story or what Beck actually said. Soros himself wrote in a bio what he did as a young man and why he did it -- to protect his family. Beck acknowledged this and said he understood why Soros was caught in a bad situation. But, you read up on Soros's childhood if your interested, the point here is that Zakaria said Beck is framing Soros as a Leftist Puppet Master. Beck accused Soros of using his influence and money to push his Leftist agenda, and Soros has -- you can find all this by researching Soros's support of many different Leftist groups.
Zakaria's point to Soros was how ridiculous it is to accuse someone of being an Puppet Master. Zakaria and Soros got a laugh out of this -- it's so extreme, right? But, Soros then went on to say that Rupert Murdock is the real Puppet Master, and that he uses Beck in an Orwellian/Newspeak fashion that can be compared to Nazi-Germany to brainwash the "decent" Tea Party people who just don't know any better. Zakaria said nothing about the hypocrisy here. Soros ended with a statement that was a little creepy -- to paraphrase, Soros said that Zakaria and his audience had just heard from the Leftist Puppet Master and that they can judge for themselves -- Soros smiled, but the smile appeared to be touched with a little mischief. It was incredible, really.
Then, Zakaria had another interview that was equally strange. He had a Muslim, Harvard professor on who is an "expert" on the Muslim Brotherhood. This professor said that the Brotherhood is made up of high functioning Muslims like doctors and lawyers, and they wear suits like normal business people. Zakaria asked if the Brotherhood wants to create a Caliphate -- the professor said yes they do, but it's a different kind of Caliphate -- it has the same horrible, radical, misogynist, Islamist ends, but the means are peaceful today, not violent -- yes, the professor said, they still use violent rhetoric, but coming from a rolly-polly physician or lawyer in a business suit, they can't be taken seriously. The professor said if he was an Egyptian, he wouldn't vote for the Brotherhood, but he beleives they should have a part in the government. Again, incredible. Zakaria is a propagandist - nothing more, nothing less.