Sunday, August 7, 2016

Why Are Elites Out of Touch? They Think Anyone Who Disagrees with Them Is Crazy

The experts told us that Brexit will not happen. It cannot happen. The consequences will be too severe. The economic fallout too great to even imagine. Yet, the unthinkable became a reality: The people of Britain voted "Leave,” against the experts' advice. How could this be? Did they not hear the experts' warnings? What went wrong?
Baffled, the experts searched for an answer. And they found one: the people went mad. They became mad from their anger at globalization. Globalization promised them riches, instead it made some of them unemployed. Or they became mad because of fear—fear from immigration and foreign people. Whatever the reason they went mad, the experts are sure of one thing: the fault is not with them. They gave sound advice. Their arguments were relevant. The fault is with the populace, not the leaders.

A few examples are in order. First, an article published in Foreign Policy with the title: "It's Time for the Elites to Rise up Against the Ignorant Masses." The writer claims the world is divided not between right and left, but between the sane and the angry. And the latter are angry simple because they are ignorant.…
The diagnosis is correct — elite entitlement versus the rule of the rabble. His therapy, not so much — basically change the propaganda rather than address the actual issues that underlie.

The National Interest
Why Are Elites Out of Touch? They Think Anyone Who Disagrees with Them Is Crazy
Nitzan David Foucks, Israeli writer and speaker on foreign policy and geopolitics


Andrew Anderson said...

How's this for crazy? "Loans create deposits" but because of extensive privileges* for the banks only largely virtual liabilities wrt the population?

And how's this for hypocrisy? That those who defend the banks often do it by pointing to the accounting! As if we can have honest accounting with largely virtual, i.e. largely unreal, i.e. largely a sham liabilities?!

The games up so where do we go from here? Does honesty matter or doesn't it? But be advised that honesty is not on trial here and never shall be. What's on trial is our society and I suggest we repent.

*e.g. government provided deposit insurance, interest paying sovereign debt, a fiat lender of last resort, etc.

Bob said...

The author is not advocating more propaganda, but education using facts and rational arguments. I'm holding my breath...

Andrew Anderson said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Calgacus said...

Bob: Yes, concerning Foucks in The National Interest. But surely "advocating more propaganda" refers to James Traub in Foreign Policy. I read it the same way at first though.

but education using facts and rational arguments. I'm holding my breath... True, holding one's breath is not recommended, but nothing else can ever stand up to that for only a little bit longer interval. So following anything else than Foucks's recommendation "honesty and rational arguments" is a waste of time. As he says: "There can be no other way."

Andrew Anderson: Bob is clearly referring to the post and linked article(s).

There is a valuable article linked to in the comments to the National Interest one: Towards A New Universalism.

Bob said...

Sorry, I tend not to read articles within articles unless they're interesting.

The Spiked article is a verbose explanation for why top-down centralized decision making tends to flop and alienate those it would rule. However, I do not subscribe to their extreme humanist views. Their conception of internationalism/cosmopolitanism is one I want nothing to do with.

Calgacus said...

Chacun à son goût. For others, the point is that anti-Brexiters disparage Brexit as anti-cosmopolitan. The article notes that the word cosmopolitan comes from Kant and describes how far the EU conception is from Kant's, and how close to what he was criticizing. Kant imho is always worth thinking about - especially when I agree with him, as here. :-)

Ryan Harris said...

"in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America."

I don't see anywhere in the constitution or ammendments that give "cosmopolitans" a right to Hope at the expense of common folk. We elect representatives to carry out our will, and if the commoners find hope in actions that create angst in cosmopolitan elite.... pity... So sorry. Tyranny of majority. Go to court if you need protection.

Bob said...

The world is far from being cosmopolitan as the elites and humanists imagine it. They can push their beliefs and their grandiose projects onto the 'ignorant' majority, but eventually there will be a backlash.

Capitalism and nationalism require the nation state. And as capitalism degenerates into fascism, the mechanisms of state power become ever more crucial. What are the cosmopolitans going to do to check that trend?

Decentralization of power and greater protectionism may or may not result in a world that is less cosmopolitan - it depends on the definition. If the definition includes open borders and open immigration... well, that goose is cooked.

Calgacus said...

Bob (& maybe Ryan): Your first two paragraphs agree entirely with the Spiked article (humanists?) and Kant against the Eurocrats (elites?). Hard for me to see what the point is.

Decentralization of power - well, from an evil empire like the EU? All for it. Meaning that a state that issues money should not let its peepul get any for doing stuff for the state & make them starve in a decentralized way - against.

Open borders, immigration, protectionism or "free trade" are unimportant side issues. No matter how often the strange and false claim is made that they can cook the goose of - rather than at worst impose a (fad) diet on - a country that is sanely run, that practices Fun Finance under the Magic Money Tree, this is just a bald assertion with no reasoning nor experience behind it. If that's what you're saying, it's like saying a pea-shooter can bring down an elephant.

Bob said...

Open borders, immigration, protectionism or "free trade" are unimportant side issues.

Tell that to them! Open borders, immigration are a big issue for Spiked humanists; while all of those items are big issues for the elites.

Most people would concur that the EU is not a federation by the way they treat their member states. But the architects of that project seem to believe that if they insist upon freedom of movement, then that will magically advance them towards their goal of having a federation.

Spiked *cough* trolls *cough* humanists believe that their philosophy can magically overcome differences that express themselves in culture, nationality and tribalism. Open those borders!

These dreamers, elitist or idealist, are welcome to their fantasies. They are welcome to stand on the deck of their good ship as it slips beneath the waves.

Meanwhile, if we observe actual functioning federations, we find that they do not operate with the kind of beggar-thy-neighbour policies that characterize the EU. They do allow their citizens to move freely within the state, but most of them have sensible, (i.e. self-serving) immigration policies.

By all means tell them that these are just side issues. They won't listen. They never listen to ignorant peasants who deserve to have cake shoved in their mouths.