Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Mike Lofgren — Revolt of the Rich: Our financial elites are the new secessionists

Former Republican congressional staffer Mike Lofgren strikes again, in, of all places, The American Conservative. Right on, Mike. Strong stuff.
If a morally acceptable American conservatism is ever to extricate itself from a pseudo-scientific inverted Marxist economic theory, it must grasp that order, tradition, and stability are not coterminous with an uncritical worship of the Almighty Dollar, nor with obeisance to the demands of the wealthy. Conservatives need to think about the world they want: do they really desire a social Darwinist dystopia?
The objective of the predatory super-rich and their political handmaidens is to discredit and destroy the traditional nation state and auction its resources to themselves. Those super-rich, in turn, aim to create a “tollbooth” economy, whereby more and more of our highways, bridges, libraries, parks, and beaches are possessed by private oligarchs who will extract a toll from the rest of us. Was this the vision of the Founders? Was this why they believed governments were instituted among men—that the very sinews of the state should be possessed by the wealthy in the same manner that kingdoms of the Old World were the personal property of the monarch?
The American Conservative
Revolt of the Rich — Our financial elites are the new secessionists
Mike Lofgren
(h/t The Huffington Post)

This guy can write. He has a future. Just what the GOP desperately needs.


Bob Roddis said...

"Of all places"? American Conservative publishes many Ron Paulian and Austrian articles.

Tom Hickey said...

Bob, are you now saying that Paul people and Austrians agree that the super-rich should be put on a leash? I thought that Libertarian Austrians espoused the Ayn Rand-John Galt model of letting the rich be rich because, after all, it's their private property that they earned competitively in the markets without breaking any laws, or at least without having been prosecuted and convicted criminally or found at fault in civil suits.

This is not what any conservatives are saying that I have heard or heard about.

Matt Franko said...

Thanks for posting this Tom, this is where I come from on the Conservative side of the aisle pretty much...

What are our true western traditions???? To me, it is our 'nomos' or 'civil law'. The tradition of the west is NOT lawlessness and social Darwinism.

Western history has a liberal bias...

There is a hypocrisy over here on the legacy right where the question becomes: How can one reject Darwinism but accept social Darwinism? You can't do this imo.

you either reject all forms of Darwinism or you don't.... again BIG hypocrisy over here...


paul meli said...

I sent this article to friends yesterday, but it was meant mainly for my conservative friends.

There are a few writers over there that make good sense, seem almost "liberal." Our anchors have been up-rooted.

Daniel Larison is another fine writer over there. His stuff is worth reading.

Let's hope that our equivalent to the "good germans" figure out what's happening in time to be relevant.

paul meli said...


"you either reject all forms of Darwinism or you don't"

What do you mean by Darwinism in this context?

Matt Franko said...


The biological theory wrt "survival or the fittest" "natural selection" etc...

iow this Theory is rejected by the Christian right (Creationists) yet they support candidates who want to base economic policy on these same methods ie 'natural selection' = 'invisible hand' (to me anyways)... this is hard for me to understand... seems very hypocritical to me....


paul meli said...


Thanks for the clarification. I agree completely.

Tom Hickey said...

you either reject all forms of Darwinism or you don't.... again BIG hypocrisy over here...

A worse contradiction to me is accepting Jesus and Ayn Rand simultaneously. How one bridges that gap I don't know, unless one is a total moron or pervert.

Paul Ryan got this and had to backpedal quickly when called out on this inconsistency.

Tom Hickey said...

paul, from the point of view of physics, the invisible hand doctrine is based on the law of least action, therefore, remove government and "free" the "natural forces" of the market to follow the law of least action (efficiency).

From the POV of physics, this is not even wrong. It's application of a law in an area where it does not hold for a variety of reasons, both definitional and observational.

Roger Erickson said...

@Tom Hickey

"This guy can write. He has a future. Just what the GOP desperately needs."

'Ceptin' they just drummed him OUT of the GOP.

Where else can he go? New "Non-Party"? Call it the George Washington Party of Independents. They wouldn't even have to organize, meet or have a convention! :) A Virtual Pary.

paul meli said...

"Where else can he go?"

Democratic Party.

Moving the Overton Window further to the right as the population as a whole remains several clicks to the left of the government based on polling on individual issues.

Who says money isn't everything?

Tom Hickey said...

Roger, an increasing number of GOP'ers are aware that the present course is unsustainable owing to the demographics alone. Jeb Bush has been issuing warnings, for example. The answer of the present GOP is vote suppression, corruption (one dollar, one vote) and court packing. That, too, is unsustainable.

There is a movement afoot to "broaden the base" and that necessitates a move away from the GOP as the party of angry white men and subservient wives, led from the wings by the super-rich mega-donors. Lacking that, the GOP will be a minority party in a couple of election cycles.

If the GOP wins this round, the present rump will be emboldened. If it loses, then there will be some rethinking, but the conclusion is likely to be that they should have gone with a "real conservative" instead of a flake like Romney and a token minority as VP. In either case, the move will be further to right.

So I think that people like Lofgren, Barlett, etc, are the harbingers of a new wave in the GOP. There will be a lot of big money behind this, too. Otherwise, the Democratic Party led by minorities will be the future of America in the future as far as the numbers go, virtually unopposed until the GOP changes its strategy.

Teddy Roosevelt successfully mounted a third party challenge to the GOP. So something like this has precedent.

paul meli said...

Here's a quote I just saw. Wow !!!

“The demographics race we’re losing badly,” said Sen. Lindsey O. Graham (S.C.). “We’re not generating enough angry white guys to stay in business for the long term.”

This guy ain't no back-bencher.

Tom Hickey said...

Moving the Overton Window further to the right as the population as a whole remains several clicks to the left of the government based on polling on individual issues.

I don't think that this is sustainable. The Democrats are already losing the base, and 2010 sent a message to that effect. The establishment didn't get it. 2012 could well be a repeat. Occupy and the 99% movement as the correlate of the Tea Party are just the beginning. Criticism of Obama from the left has been withering. I don't see the Dem establishment New Democrats and Third Way being sustainable on their present course of capturing the disaffected moderate GOP vote. The intensity is with the base and they are losing it.

jeg3 said...

Survival of the Fittest seems to be the most abused term to justify any belief. And better called Spencerism.

"Evolution: 24 myths and misconceptions"

"Evolution myths: 'Survival of the fittest' justifies 'everyone for themselves'"

"The phrase "survival of the fittest", which was coined not by Darwin but by the philosopher Herbert Spencer, is widely misunderstood."

"What we see in the wild is not every animal for itself. Cooperation is an incredibly successful survival strategy. Indeed it has been the basis of all the most dramatic steps in the history of life. "

"However, natural selection is simply a description of what happens in the living world. It does not tell us how we should behave."

Matt Franko said...


"What we see in the wild is not every animal for itself."

If you watch the video in this post you can see this in action:

Without a doubt. rsp,

Matt Franko said...

If Dawkins is to be believed here (I have no reason to doubt him), looks like the whole Theory of Evolution got started based on Darwin's observation of what he considered unjust activity:

"Dawkins first recounts how Charles Darwin lost his faith in religion by quoting his words, "I cannot persuade myself that a beneficent and omnipotent God would have designedly created the Ichneumonidae with the express intention of their feeding within the living bodies of Caterpillars." We ask why a caterpillar should suffer such cruel punishment. We ask why digger wasps couldn't first kill caterpillars to save them from a prolonged and agonizing torture. We ask why a child should die an untimely death. And we ask why we should all grow old and die."

So the whole Evolution Theory would not exist if not for Darwin rejecting what he viewed as the concept of "the creation of injustice".

But then you have anti-Darwinists on the nominal Christian right getting behind Ayn Rand and her advocacy for allowing a created system to operate that results in massive injustice... hmmmmm???

Who is correct??? rsp

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