The Other McCain

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

Why Liberals Hate You

Posted on | September 19, 2012 | 113 Comments

Rare is the day when I have cause to express gratitude to Matt Yglesias, but his expression of the statist view could not be clearer:

 

 

Could we write a 10,000-word essay on the crypto-totalitarian assumptions of this statement? Sure we could. But why bother, when Iowahawk does it in 140-characters or less?

 

 

The temptation to teach a political philosophy class here is strong, but must be resisted. Let us merely assume, therefore, that our readers are familiar with those conservative thinkers who scoff at the “state of nature” in which too many philosphers have based their deluded egalitarian theories. There was never any such “state of nature.”

Government began with the family, and its authority was developed in other such organic institutions which the state did nothing to create, but which the state is obligated to defend. The state should be the servant of its citizens and not the master, and there is no “democratic” right that permits the state to defraud citizens of their property for the benefit of any special interest or political constituency. But as I say, I’m resisting the temptation to teach a class. Let’s keep it to Tweets.

 

 

At this very moment, the state’s wife is trying to get the state’s children out of the state’s beds, but they’re not going to the state’s schools to get the state’s education. The state may tax us to provide such schools, but the state cannot compel our children to attend them — at least, not yet. Matt Yglesias would probably say that my wife and I are stealing these children from the state.

UPDATE: William J. Hoge wonders, “What are they teaching kids these days?” Ah, but Yglesias was magna cum laude at Harvard.

The absolute disconnect between the statist idolatry of Yglesias and any real sense of history is not, I think, accidental.

“To live for the moment is the prevailing passion— to live for yourself, not for your predecessors or posterity. We are fast losing the sense of historical continuity, the sense of belonging to a succession of generations originating in the past and stretching into the future.”
Christopher Lasch, The Culture of Narcissism (1979)

This is what the the statism of Yglesias neglects, “the sense of belonging” to something more permanent than a peer group, a social clique or a self-chosen political category. Yglesias is profoundly alienated from America, unable to relate to or empathize with the Founders or their vision, and thinks it “false consciousness” (or ignorant adherence to a “myth”) if others do.

Patriotism the decadent likes of Yglesias cannot comprehend, except insofar as they can redefine America to fit their philosophy, and then command your allegiance to their creation.

Nor is it an accident that such shallow self-regarding elitists contemptuously dismiss religion as another ignorant myth, because God and God’s laws must be overthrown if their own authority to dictate to others — performing the role of Platonic archons — is to be recognized without challenge. Their possession of elite credentials would otherwise be devalued, and they would be unjustly deprived of that which they most crave, an unquestioned status of superiority over others.

Their egalitarian theory is thus exposed as dishonest hypocrisy: While they are willing to redistribute the property of others, they cling with jealous ferocity to that which they most fanatically crave, namely their own prestige and privileges.

Our humility in thinking ourselves no better than our ancestors — my great-grandfather was entirely illiterate, as perhaps were your own forebears — is incomprehensible to intellectuals, who confuse their skill at articulation with wisdom and virtue. Hayek examined this confusion in “The Intellectuals and Socialism,” as did Thomas Sowell in The Vision of the Anointed. Once you understand that a man might be fluent and persuasive while yet being foolish and vicious, then you are less likely to be dazzled or deceived by the elite credentials and wordy pretensions of such impudent intellectual bullies as Matthew Yglesias.

They hate you most thoroughly, except you are so microscopically insignificant as to be beneath their notice, so that these would-be philosopher-kings regard you with complete contempt.

 





 

 


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Comments

  • http://wizbangblog.com/ Adjoran

    It is VERY rude of y’all to go off topic on a thread about Matt Yglesias by talking about more interesting writers.

    I’m jus’ sayin’ . . .

  • http://thecampofthesaints.org Bob Belvedere

    I find Jonah iffy these days. Don’t forget Andrew McCarthy and David Pryce-Jones!

  • hutch1200

    That’s what bitches are for. Makin’ sammiches! (I now denounce myself)

  • http://twitter.com/richard_mcenroe richard mcenroe

    I wish you hadn’t done that. I have enough trouble filling in for Stacy with the lesbians…

  • hutch1200

    Or at least a nice “salad tossing”?

  • Jabba The Tutt

    Beer was the cause for the origin of civilization. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it. Hey Smitty, I once sent you a picture of a liquor store in Grand Rapids called Smitty’s.

  • Wombat_socho

    I’m not arguing that point. He and I had a remarkably civil discussion about the whole gore porn thing on LJ, as it happens, and while I see his/your point, it came close to ruining the book for me.

  • http://2012.ak4mc.us/ McGehee

    Maybe it’s because in your haste to use the “stopped clock” analogy you’re indicating agreement with Yggy’s ridiulously absurd claim.

  • Fred_Z

    Your comment has led me to a germ of an idea – for weak men like Yglesias the state is the source of property, for on his own he would have difficulty earning, creating or keeping property.

  • http://thecampofthesaints.org Bob Belvedere

    Kai Penn, too!

  • http://twitter.com/richard_mcenroe richard mcenroe

    I dunno. Maybe I’ve just seen more gore. But his descriptions didn’t strike me as over the line either for history or my own admittedly limited experience.

  • http://thecampofthesaints.org Bob Belvedere

    I denounce myself.

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