The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

You Say That Like It’s a Bad Thing

Posted on | May 7, 2012 | 28 Comments

François Hollande will strike fear into the hearts of the rich,” is the headline on a column by Nabila Ramdani in the British Independent.

Permit me to suggest two likely results (a) some genuinely rich people will leave France, taking their wealth with them, and (b) a lot of the “rich” people in France won’t be so rich any more.

The point is that “rich” is often used to designate people who, at any given time, have a high annual income. This is not the same as “rich,” as in having a massive net worth, and it is certainly not the same as the cartoonish Thurston Howell III stereotype: People born to ultra-wealthy parents, who grow up in extraordinarily affluent circumstances, with nannies and butlers and chauffeurs, top-flight private schools, winter ski vacations at the family chalet, summers in the Hamptons, etc.

It’s resentment of the Thurston Howell III types that fuels this spiteful rage to make the rich “pay their fair share,” and so if François Hollande tries to jack up taxes on those people, they’ll either find ways to evade the taxes or else they’ll get the hell out of France. One way or another, by driving investment capital out of the private sector, such a soak-the-rich policy will have the effect of stifling economic growth, and reduce the incomes of everybody, including some high-income people — entrepreneurs, high-skill technicians, sales executives — who, earning less money in a weakened economy, will therefore not pay as much taxes at the higher rate as they would had the rates stayed the same.

So all this “strike fear in the hearts of the rich” noise is either just noise, or else it’s a plan to spread the misery around.

BTW, yes, I realize this is my second post in a row about François Hollande, and yes, I realize you probably don’t give a damn about the French. But it’s all over Memeorandum, and the rest of the news seems kinda meh today. So let’s have more fun with Euro-weenies, eh? Here’s Independent columnist Peter Popham:

Rise of far right threatens
to pollute politics across Europe

They may not have claimed ultimate victory, but the biggest winners of the elections in France and Greece were the parties of the extreme right. Fringe parties, some of them routinely labelled “neo-Fascist” until recently, have made stunning inroads into mainstream European politics, to the point that in France, Norway, Finland, Hungary and Austria they either hold or threaten to hold the balance of power. Governments are increasingly faced with the choice of either giving ground on hot-button issues such as immigration and Islam, or ceding power.

Hang on here: France elects a socialist who wants to impose tax rates as high as 75 percent, and it’s the “extreme right” we’re worried about? Speaking of irrational fear, Charles Johnson is hearing jackboots on the cobblestones again, as Diary of Daedalus reports:

The Neo-Nazi Golden Dawn Party has won 7% of the votes in Greece’s recent election. They will get 21 seats in the new parliament. This gave Charles Johnson an orgasm since he is obsessed with Nazis!

Seven percent of voters in Greece, a country with a population (11.3 million) roughly the size of Ohio, vote for this far-right party, and Charles Johnson imagines . . . what? The Greek neo-Hitler building up a mighty war machine? An Aegean Kristallnacht? An invasion of Macedonia? Greek bombers and tanks rampaging across the Mediterranean? Headline from the London Daily Mail:

Rise of the Greek neo-Nazis: Ultra-right
party Golden Dawn wants to force
immigrants into work camps and plant
landmines along Turkish border

Sounds scary, except they only got 7% of the vote! Assuming that the other 93% of Greek parliament members aren’t down for this agenda, the wacko plans of these “ultra-right” guys are as much of a genuine danger as the threat of Ron Paul becoming president. (OK, that scenario had some people jittery in December.) We’re talking about a comparative handful of powerless kooks in a weak, impoverished and demographically collapsing country on the far side of the globe.

The same people who want us all to freak out about Greek Nazis, of course, would be the first to accuse of us of irresponsible fear-mongering if we pointed out the dangers of, inter alia, narco-terrorists in Mexico or Mahmoud Ahmahdinejad in Iran.

Hell, I’m more afraid of Canadians than I am of the Greeks, and we could probably wipe out Canada in a week or two without mobilizing much more than the Minnesota National Guard.

You people need to get a grip, or you’ll end up gibbering nonsense on “progressive” talk-radio like Charles Johnson:

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Comments

  • DaveO

    Whatever France does, we do the opposite. An excellent harbinger for Romney.

    I’m certain America can absorb the remainder of Europe’s wealth. But, once Merkel get’s pissed, we need to let her keep western Europe.

  • Tom donelson

    The Commies got more votes than the neo Nazis.

  • un Mata hari

    Charles should move to France.

    he wants everybody to take care of him so he can sit around all day and pull his pud every time he sees his name in print.

  • Adobe_Walls

    How come nobody is concerned about German Pirates in Schleswig-Holstein?

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/V54MMT2YDO46ECXGFICCMUCGBU Ford Prefect

    Isn’t gibbering nonsense Chuckie’s stock and trade?  People read LGF [insert full name of site here] just to get a good dose of the stuff to help build their immunity.

  • http://evilbloggerlady.blogspot.com/ Evi L. Bloggerlady

    Agree Europe going down the socialist crap hole does not bode well to Obama.  

  • http://evilbloggerlady.blogspot.com/ Evi L. Bloggerlady

    That line cracks me up because I was watching Sons of Anarchy on Netflix and Jax says that to an Irish girl he almost shagged (till he finds out in the nick of time she is his unknown half sister).  Oopps.  

    Okay, you had to be there but it was funny.  

  • http://thepagantemple.blogspot.com/ ThePaganTemple

    The Left is obsessed with Nazis, so anytime any of them make the least amount of noise anywhere, they go into full blown rant mode, imagining hordes of black leather wearing jackbooted thugs with nightsticks and swastikas roaming the streets.

    They try to equate Nazis with the “Right” and insist Fascism is the natural extreme of conservative policies. There might be some merit in that claim so far as some European so-called “conservative” movements goes, but not true conservatism such as here in the US, which generally believes in as little government as possible.

    Unfortunately most people just don’t know any better, but a leftist calling an American conservative a Nazi is like Dan Savage calling somebody a faggot.

    In the meantime, European leftist governments keep enacting social and racial policies that fuel the kind of resentment that leads to the rise of these “Far Right” extremist groups (which are overall probably as leftist as the others, if not more so), then wonder what went wrong.

  • Pingback: Cloward-Piven Strategy is Working in Europe, Don’t Let it Happen Here | The Lonely Conservative

  • Pathfinder’s wife

    I don’t worry about them as much as a Linke/Green.  I’m not sure if a Pirate/Linke/Green join up would work, so hopefully they’ll wind up fighting and cancelling each other out.

  • CPAguy

    Obviously, the rich will easily avoid taxation.  It is what I  help them do all day…lol….

    The government doesn’t own your $$$….and the real rich have wealth (i.e. generally money that has already been taxed…or already avoided tax) that affords them competent accountants, lawyers, and investment advisers to take advantage of every loop hole their campaign contributions have bought them.

  • Adobe_Walls

    Soo…you’re saying they’re not actual Pirates…..disappointing.

  • http://www.leftbankofthecharles.com/ Charles

    The French socialists are rich, I don’t think they have anything to fear from themselves.

    They are sweating because Sarkozy’s UMP still has an absolute majority in the National Assembly with elections scheduled for June. If UMP keeps that majority, or links up with the far right parties who are expected to do well, the Presidential win may turn out to be a Pyrrhic victory for the socialists.

    Would the French electorate play the divided government game? If they don’t like Sarkozy but don’t fully trust the socialists …

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/EU5DQWQTTHTPO4A4ZYSL3AAV2U Adjoran

    Buried among the avalanche of stories over the last couple of years about the fiscal disasters pending in the so-called PIIGS countries (Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Greece, and Spain) is the fact that France itself, until recently one of the healthier economies of Old Europe, has been hurtling towards a fiscal brick wall as well. 

    The socialist taxing and spending ideas aren’t the real threat to them or to Greece, at least not in the shorter term.  The problem is that just abandoning the limited austerity measures Sarkozy was able to impose puts them right back on that dead end street going 90 mph.  Within another two years, they will have gone from one of the nations funding the bailouts to the ones needing a bailout.  And there will be no one answering the call.

    Greece never has had a chance, not 1%, since before the first ECB-imposed “austerity” plan over two years ago.  They can’t collect their taxes, and haven’t been able to pull it more than about 2/3 of what is owed in the last 40 years.  They have no way of doing it, cannot do it, would face riots if they tried, not to mention an effective tax increase of 50% on a country already in permanent contraction would kill the economy quickly.  It’s all been a fantasy of the bankers who don’t want to write off the bad Greek debt they hold, and so have pushed these phony plans to kick the can down the road a bit.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/EU5DQWQTTHTPO4A4ZYSL3AAV2U Adjoran

    Oh, and I love you guys, but there is no way on earth I’m sitting through even a 2 minute video of that idiot.  Life is too short.

  • K-Bob

    This would never have happened if you purist conservatives had supported Christine O’Donnell.   Now we’re stuck with…

    Wait, this isn’t about the Tea party, is it?

    Well either way, I’m sure Karl Rove is behind it all.  He seems kinda French to me.

  • http://marezilla.com/ Zilla of the Resistance

    “Extreme far right” what a load of double speak nonsense! Socialists = far LEFT, Communists = far LEFT, nazis/neo-nazis (National SOCIALISTS) = far LEFT – this is the same nonsense we see when the moronstream media refer to islamic nutjobs as “ultra-conservative”, failing to realize that totalitarianism is LEFTIST. There is not a whole lot of difference in how islamic and communist tyrants operate; squash dissent, murder opposition, propaganda which states that good is evil and evil is good – two sides of the same totalitarian collectivist coin. 

  • http://thecampofthesaints.org Bob Belvedere

    I have never understood why Bismark was so keen on Schleswig-Holstein.

    It’s been nothing but trouble for the Germans…oh, wait, that’s a good thing.

  • http://thecampofthesaints.org Bob Belvedere

    They be digital pirates, arrgghh.

    http://www.dw.de/dw/article/0,,15933038,00.html

  • http://thecampofthesaints.org Bob Belvedere

    Those ‘Far Right’ groups are, indeed, Leftist because they have no problem in using government power to regulate their own peoples.

    This could open a can of philosophical worms, but, it seems to me, the people actually on the real far Right are either Anarchists or Monarchists, although, if their scholars are to be believed, the Left claims it’s ultimate goal is the withering away of the state, so perhaps Anarchy is the tie that binds the far Left and the real far Right.

  • scarymatt

    I’m always amused by Europeans saying America doesn’t have a Left Wing. Of course, our mainstream Democrats aren’t as overtly left as European leftists can be, but they’re definitely there.

    The truth is that Europe’s definition of Right Wing is just a variant of American Left Wing (viz Liberal Fascism, etc, etc).

    Where’s the actual classical liberalism* in Europe? The only places this seems to manifest is in some former Soviet / Warsaw Pact areas.

    * An admitted oversimplification, but a very important part of the American Right.

  • scarymatt

    TRWTF is comparing anything going on in the world with “austerity.” Just the latest doublespeak in the project to centrally plan everything, since we obviously can’t be trusted to choose anything in our lives.

  • Pathfinder’s wife

    Schleswig-Holstein is where my husband’s family hails from…the politics there are…interesting to say the least(this may have something to do with the makeup of the populace — it’s an interesting mix there). As such that state can be an indicator for how the rest of the country might go.

  • http://thecampofthesaints.org Bob Belvedere

    It’s never dull there, that’s for sure.

  • http://thepagantemple.blogspot.com/ ThePaganTemple

     Not really, they diverge greatly on the matter of property rights. That’s one of the main reasons communism fails. How can you have a stateless society with nothing but local control and then come down hard and heavy on property rights, which would require a state apparatus.

    Their answer to that would be local councils and workers control of production. Which just goes to show they’re clueless about human nature by assuming workers don’t want to be wealthy and own property. Then when it hits them, finally, the gulags, reeducation camps and mass graves start in force, all an attempt to build the new Socialist Man, and of course an attempt to maintain power and control through terror. After awhile retaining that power becomes the only goal.

    The far right, they just believe in the law of the jungle, where you can pretty much own what you want, by whatever means you can get it and get away with it. If you lose your ass in the meantime, or someone takes exception to your ethics and takes matters into his own hands in exacting retribution, while that might be technically illegal and discouraged, nobody is going to care much about it, nor would there be an apparatus in place to maintain order and rule of law if they did.

  • http://thepagantemple.blogspot.com/ ThePaganTemple

     Europeans are used to having government control their lives, hold their hands, and to be a constant presence in their society, from the earliest feudal days when serfs had to fork over a portion of their produce to the earls and barons, etc. They’re used to being told what to think, how to act, what to do, where to go, and even how to worship. So it’s not surprising that their definition of conservative would take that history into account. The only real difference in liberals and conservatives in Europe is the degree of largesse and bread and circuses are provided to the commoner.

    They think its a good deal. Even most conservatives wouldn’t dream of eliminating socialized medicine, for example. They consider it a vast improvement over the days when if someone got sick the lord of the manor sent over a basket of fruit, which very possibly came from said serf’s own garden.

    Allies, my ass. British aristocrats would toss their own mothers into a meat grinder if they could get America completely under their thumb and subservient to them again, and the common Brit would go right along with it, the so-called conservatives every bit as much as the left.

  • M. Thompson

     Don’t say that too much, it makes the lefties’ narrative fall apart.

  • The Osprey

    I had Greek food for lunch today. I guess that according to Charles Johnson I am now a Gyro-Fascist.