The Other McCain

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

Phrases Without Intellectual Content

Posted on | October 6, 2011 | 14 Comments

by Smitty

Williamson at The Corner, emphasis original:

Those who talk about the horror of putting profits over people make no sense at all. The phrase is without intellectual content. Perhaps you do not think that Apple, or Goldman Sachs, or a professional sports enterprise, or an internet pornographer actually creates much social value; but markets are very democratic — everybody gets to decide for himself what he values. That is not the final answer to every question, because economic answers can only satisfy economic questions. But the range of questions requiring economic answers is very broad.

‘Putting profits over people’ is like ‘getting back to nature’. When, exactly, were you not in nature? Is there something unnatural about this keyboard? Does its matter not matter? Is it anti-matter? These physical objects are all derived, ultimately, from the Periodic Table of Elements, no?

The real grip about arguments such as these is that they are first and foremost emotional appeals. People are as inclined to put emotion over intellect when trying to persuade as they are to focus on separating cash from a mark more than delivering a product. Sure, it goes on. But is a myopic, transient game. That would be as stupid as Weyerhaeuser thrashing all the forests in the Pacific Northwest and not re-planting. Which they do not do. Because they are not flipping morons that put wood over sustainability. Yes, there is a quarterly report. And another. And another.

I think its actually rather brilliant, in a spitefully amputating one’s nose sort of way, that the anti-capitalist Left has managed to convince a cadre of useful idiots that businesses take the money and run on day 91, after submitting the quarterly report.

Other than explaining Solyndra and ilk, ‘putting profits over people’ is pure idiocy.


14 Responses to “Phrases Without Intellectual Content”

  1. Anonymous
    October 6th, 2011 @ 7:37 am

    Liberals apparently lack the capability to follow something to its logical conclusion.  However, they can seemingly always connect anything to raaaaacism.

    Also, beaver dams are no more natural than 747s.

  2. Anonymous
    October 6th, 2011 @ 8:38 am

    Robert Heinlein expressed that thought exactly:

    “There are hidden contradictions in the minds of people who “love Nature” while deploring the “artificialities” with which “Man has spoiled ‘Nature.'” The obvious contradiction lies in their choice of words, which imply that Man and his artifacts are not part of “Nature” — but beavers and their dams are. But the contradictions go deeper than this prima-facie absurdity. In declaring his love for a beaver dam (erected by beavers for beavers’ purposes) and his hatred for dams erected by men (for the purposes of men) the Naturist reveals his hatred for his own race — i.e., his own self-hatred.

    In the case of “Naturists” such self-hatred is understandable; they are such a sorry lot. But hatred is too strong an emotion to feel toward them; pity and contempt are the most they rate.

    As for me, willy-nilly I am a man, not a beaver, and H. sapiens is the only race I have or can have. Fortunately for me, I like being part of a race made up of men and women — it strikes me as a fine arrangement — and perfectly “natural” Believe it or not, there were “Naturists” who opposed the first flight to old Earth’s Moon as being “unnatural” and a “despoiling of Nature.” “

  3. Anonymous
    October 6th, 2011 @ 8:43 am

    Though confirmation is hidden in the mists of memory, I’m fairly certain my use of beaver dams is an allusion to this bit of Heinlein.

  4. Joe
    October 6th, 2011 @ 9:27 am

    I like beavers. 

  5. Joe
    October 6th, 2011 @ 9:28 am

    I read that article last night at the Corner.  It is very well done. 

  6. TrogloPundit
    October 6th, 2011 @ 9:56 am

    Farmers demand payment, even though there is hunger in the world.  Doctors and nurses demand payment, even though there is sickness in the world.  Teachers demand payment (wow how they demand payment), even though there is illiteracy in the world.  Without payment, they wouldn’t do these things.  Are they putting profit over people, too?

  7. Anonymous
    October 6th, 2011 @ 10:00 am

    And the Obama Cartel is attempting to attach itself to the protestors when it is the very vehicle siphoning tapayer dollars into the bailouts that are producing much of the “Evil Wall Street Profits”.
    Their level of duplicity is perhaps, unprecedented.

  8. ThePaganTemple
    October 6th, 2011 @ 10:16 am

    I’d love to see some company advertise themselves with something like “Putting Profits Over People Since 1949”. I’d sure as hell buy their stock. It would show they got honesty, integrity, a wicked sense of humor, and damn good business sense. Besides, its not like caring about profits means you can’t care about people at all.

  9. Anonymous
    October 6th, 2011 @ 10:48 am

    We’re all about the beavers, at least on Sundays.

  10. Anonymous
    October 6th, 2011 @ 10:51 am

    Actually, they’re either being less duplicitous or else they suck more at it, because their agenda and methods get more plain by the day.

  11. Christy Waters
    October 6th, 2011 @ 1:49 pm

    If these people had to give up everything they own that was produced as a result of profit, aka capitalism, they wouldn’t have a pot to shit in. If they’re so worked up about the evils of profit, why don’t they just go volunteer in a soup kitchen? At least they’ll be putting themselves to use, instead of parking their worthless asses in the middle of the street.

    As for me, I LOVE profit. It allows me to get paid.

    As an aside, that arrogant dolt, Alec Baldwin, thinks the Wall Street protests are just great! I wonder if he’ll give up his cushy gig, shilling for Capital One.

  12. Dodd
    October 6th, 2011 @ 2:03 pm

    You cannot go against nature / Because when you do / Go against nature / It’s part of nature too.– Love & Rockets, “No New Tale To Tell”

  13. Dave
    October 6th, 2011 @ 7:55 pm

    I just finished with a doozey of a mouthbreather. I’m in insurance. She called me, complained that she was paying too much for health insurance and didn’t like her plan. Said she was confused and didn’t understand her options. I said great, lets sit down and go over the options thoroughly so we can clear up your confusion and get you on the right plan. She started complaining that I was going to make a profit for helping her. Yup I said, this is my profession, life, health, disability etc.. this is what I do, insurance, how I support my family. She bitched some more about how unfair it was that I would be making money off of her. I explained that my services don’t affect her premiums (they don’t). She didn’t care, bitched some more about how blessed unfair it was that I was going to “make money off of her”. Finally I said screw it and got off the phone. She needed my services, they weren’t going to cost her a dime, but the fact that I make a living at this somehow made me unclean or something. What an idiot. Gee, I have no idea how she wound up on the crappy health plan she’s got now.

  14. “‘Putting profits over people’ is like ‘getting back to nature’. When, exactly, were you not in nature?” | Right Wing News
    October 8th, 2011 @ 12:05 pm

    […] Other McCain’s Smitty wonders about the “profits before people” complaint: Is there something unnatural about this keyboard? Does its matter not matter? Is it anti-matter? […]