Sunday, March 7, 2021

UPDATED: Paradox For The Day - With Bonus Paradox!

Catching up on Twitter. Nice to see a WH reporter reading serious authors

But does this suggest a problem at the heart of Classical Liberalism with it's talk of "equality". As previously discussed, "equality" makes sense in a universe based on a realist philosophy that upholds objective knowledge of an objective human nature created by God. However, in the ideology of tolerant diversity of views such objective knowledge is excluded. In a society that embraces that ideology "equality" then takes on a dissolvent quality with regard to all societal standards and institutions. We've been on a slippery slope for a long time and we're seeing the results.

Bonus paradox:

UPDATE: To expand just a bit. When a society and its government sees the imposition of "equality"--which is a condition that simply does not and never will exist within the human race--as a legitimate and desirable goal of government, the logical outcome is tyranny to one degree or another. It is driven by an anti-realist ideology, an effort to impose an concept upon the recalcitrant reality of actual human nature and human beings. We have seen the evolution in that direction everywhere Classical Liberalism has been adopted. That's the thought behind what Legutko is saying and its the thought that also makes sense of O'Rourke's witticism. That is NOT to say that some other form of government is perfect--perfection is not attainable in a necessarily imperfect world. But a government and society based on an ideology that is in principle opposed to the order of creation and of nature is headed for big trouble. Limited government in such an ideological environment will never remain limited, will never be content to leave individuals alone to rise or fall to their own level of human thriving. This is why the whole dynamic in American history is the movement from Liberal Democracy to Progressive forms of tyranny.

On the other hand, a society and its government that is grounded in a realist philosophy of objective human nature is readily able--at least on principle--to address problems of fairness and justice among its citizens and institutions in ways that take into account individual differences. This doesn't guarantee outcomes that are fair and just, but it does allow for rational discussion of what is good or bad for human nature and for individual humans, without proposed policies for attaining human happiness being forced to conform to the artificial mold of "equality."


  1. I'm in complete agreement with P.J. O'Rourke!

    A "come to Jesus" meeting is required between the two classes, those in power, and those who are not. The "haves" have drawn their lines of barbed wire, machine guns and fencing in the emerald city. There is your standard, and now it must be matched or bested. That doesn't mean crashing it, a simple embargo of enforcemen, above, below and on the ground around it would be far better.

    That requires leadership on the side of the have nots, and no one wants to touch it. I still say the ultimate power lays with the states and until we have a governor not tied to a party with the moxy to lead were very doomed to the current status quo of two party duplicity.

    You, I , we have to be willing to accept the surrender of free money and federal bribes. That means not being lazy and complacent, taking actual responsibility for both the pros and cons of true independence.

    As of now, we, the have nots, simply lack the fortifications of morals and character required for such things. Were far, lazy and complicit in the hypocrisy of it all.

    Maybe when the pain is great enough and I am personally baffled by what will finally be that straw.

  2. @Mark

    You wrote: "This doesn't guarantee outcomes that are fair and just..."

    I could argue that limited government under the rule of law does 'guarantee', or at least promotes, outcomes that are 'fair and just', but not necessarily 'equal'.

    'Fair and just' outcomes, when leavened by the inevitable capriciousness of life, is, to me, a reasonable goal. 'Equality' of outcomes, on the other hand, is a pipedream.

  3. Simply put,

    "The perfect is the enemy of the good."


    1. All created being is ipso facto imperfect. To aim for perfection, therefore, is self defeating. Distorting of sound policy. Inimical to a good outcome.

  4. Washington, DC is our Mos Eisely of planet Tatooine:

    “Never was there a more wretched hive of scum & villany.”


  5. It is a pleasure to read that you give importance to human nature. Mark, on reading your columns and the commentaries I get the impression you have a respect, or possibly fear, for authority that assumes the that they can impose their will on a cowed populace. My experience many years ago in College was that you get into a class on occasion where there is no discussion, no reasoning with the Professor, convinced of the rightiousness of his ideas, where you just learn to throw back at him the expected response to get through the course. I recently helped a grandson get through a Geology course on line, myself having no knowledge of the subject, by picking the likely multiple choice answer that the questioner required. Some years ago I read that Americans voluntarily pay income tax, and after an initial shock I grasped that we go along, accepting the necessity and with minimal cheating, to avoid any hassle. Should the majority of Americans resort to filing largely fictitious returns it would be impossible for the authorities with their limited resources to control things. The biggest danger with the present situation in my opinion is that the American public might lose all respect for the Government, the Courts, especially the Supreme Court, and authority in general. It can't happen? Thanks to de Blasio here in New York the speed limit for motorists seems to be in practice 45 miles per hour, not the official 25, and as well Bus Lanes and Red Lights are not of necessity observed except where there are cameras, whose locations are well known. Should gun control and confiscation become the law, gun ownership will not go down. Ownership will simply become illegal, and will go up, without the safeguards of background checks and regulation. Cheating to win an election, and then changing the law to ensure permanent control over the results, will result in non-participation by the public and a feeling of disenfranchisement. The non-voting public, the vast majority, will not contest the outcome, but will evade compliance in multiple ways and act in their own best self-interest.

    1. There was a well-known radio commentator, whose name evades me, who wrote that the more the government imposes diversity, the less you get in actual practice.

  6. Emerald is a gem, so to speak...and I've been following her for years (and yet to have been served with a restraining order :o). My only problem with her is that she is so damn distracting to look at that I can't remember a word she says, sigh...I must work harder at paying attention to the subject at hand or I'm gonna get lost like POTUS 46

    1. @HH... I have that issue with Chanel Rion.

  7. O/T Scott Johnson (PowerLine) pre-trial notes re the Chauvin trial:

    1. Now jury selection has been postponed:

    2. Nothing in the way of delay and screwups will surprise me. This is a trial that shouldn't be happening and it will be difficult for the legal establishment to pull it off in any convincing way.

      To be honest, I haven't been following it, figuring that fixed proceedings aren't interesting--the only matter of interest will be public reaction. Of course, an acquittal or dismissal of charges would be VERY interesting.

      Andy McCarthy has written about it today, but I can't get past the stupid PC things he says, so didn't read it.

    3. Ellison’s folly.

      Re Andy McC, ditto.

  8. O/T but potentially big news:

    >> <<

    Second half of John Solomon's interview with Maria Bartiromo yesterday.

    Says there has been a "breakthrough" in Durham's investigation: a senior member of the FBI leadership during CH -- he does not know who it is -- is cooperating with Durham.

    Says indictments likely in 6-8 weeks; suggests the issue is FBI leadership knowingly opening an inadequately predicated investigation into alleged "Russia Collusion" by Trump campaign, and advancing it with evidence they knew to be false, along with ignoring and hiding exculpatory evidence to keep the investigation alive.

    Perhaps MW can comment on Solomon's claim that DOJ has to approve the Durham prosecutions; my recollection is Barr's authorization, SC appointment, and scope memo to Durham gave him authority to prosecute whatever he deemed appropriate that came out of his Russia Hoax investigation. Does he still need DOJ permission to indict?

    Perhaps this explains the matter of the lack of prosecutors fleeing Durham's SC office. He really does intend to prosecute people well up the food chain.

    Any educated guesses as to who the former FBI official is who is cooperating with Durham? And if we can guess who is cooperating, does it tell us who Durham has in his crosshairs?

    1. My attitude is that I'll believe it when I see it.

      I don't believe--subject to correction by events--that there's been a "breakthrough". I think the senior member of leadership is simply James Baker, whom we've known about for a long time. The only other person who would qualify as "senior" might be Priestap.

      Re DoJ and Barr, Durham answers to the AG, like every SC. I'm not a DoJ insider and never have been, nevertheless I believe the reporting is correct that Durham will not be able to prosecute without the equivalent of AG approval and that that's why the 6-8 wk timeframe is mentioned--waiting for an AG to be confirmed or some acting AG to be firmly in place.

      The case as described has been known for a long time and could have been brought a year or so ago. I'm not confident that anything will come of this. The documentation was always there and had been viewed by Horowitz before Durham.

      I'll be happy to be wrong.

    2. As I've said before, I don't see the Zhou Baiden regime allowing this to happen.