After ten years of Marxist rule, Venezuela is bankrupt, stores are empty, people are rioting, those who can have left the country for Colombia, Florida, Canada, and elsewhere.
Hat Tip: Insty
After ten years of Marxist rule, Venezuela is bankrupt, stores are empty, people are rioting, those who can have left the country for Colombia, Florida, Canada, and elsewhere.
Hat Tip: Insty
There is a contest on the Left Coast to see which large urban Metroplex can be America’s most radical left city. San Francisco, Oakland, and Portland OR all try very hard to see who can best implement the destructive policies of central planning and punishing the hard-working, but Seattle routinely wins. It helps that one of the city’s landmarks is a statue of Soviet Revolutionary Communist Vladimir Lenin.
In this spirit, Seattle has introduced a $15 an hour minimum wage, which while even before full implementation is shutting down restaurants and small businesses throughout the city. They also passed a law making it illegal not to sort your household garbage, enforced by apparatchiks examining people’s garbage and encouraging neighbors to rat on each other; just as citizens of the Soviet Union were encouraged to rat out their neighbors to the state for hoarding food or listening to western radio broadcasts.
And now, the radical left-wingers ofSeattle’s city government have decided to push a “Gun Violence Tasks” on gun sales and ammunition sales.
A Seattle City Council committee on Wednesday voted unanimously to approve a two-pronged gun-safety plan, which would tax sales of guns and ammunition in Seattle and require that gun owners report the theft or loss of any firearm within 24 hours.
This has nothing to do with “gun safety,” the left’s favored euphemism for gun control. This is about punishing gun owners because the left disapproves of their behavior. It is also about driving law-abiding gun shops out of the city (which worked oh so well in Chicago), just as Seattle’s $15-an-hour minimum wage for burger flippers is driving small businesses into the suburbs. https://www.aei.org/publication/minimum-wage-effect-january-to-june-job-losses-for-seattle-area-restaurants-1300-largest-since-great-recession/
And then there is this silly piece of rationalization.
Harborview Medical Center treated 253 victims of gun violence in 2014 at a cost of $17 million, $12 million of that borne by the taxpayers, so it is right to “ask the gun industry to chip in and help defray those costs,” Seattle City Council President Tim Burgess, sponsor of the legislation, told colleagues.
Of course, making the people who actually inflicted the injuries pay for treatment is a concept that would baffle the average leftist. This is kind of like making everyone who owns a car responsible for the medical bills of drunk drivers who get into accident. Actually, the left has figured out a way to do that, too. The state of Michigan has had “No Fault” (i.e. socialized, i.e. “universal”) Auto Insurance going back a generation. How well has that worked out? Well, Michigan has the highest car insurance rates in the country; and fifty percent of motorists in Detroit don’t carry car insurance. And why should they, since the state makes responsible people pay more so that scofflaws are not inconvenienced. See also California and illegal immigrants.
At the end of the day, this is the kind of political posturing the left loves to do so much. The mundane business of collecting garbage, keeping streets in good repair, and keeping the cops honest but effective… theses sorts of things are just beneath the dignity of the radical left’s political class.
Seattle CEO Dan Price won raves from the economically-illiterate press when he announced some months ago that he was raising the minimum wage at his company to $70K per year. Many on the smug ignorant left were elated, “See, you selfish conservatives, it is possible to be financially successful and egalitarian.”
And those of us who actually understand how economics works endured the smug snottiness because we wanted to wait and see how it worked it.
I’m working as hard as I ever worked to make it work,” he told the Times in a video that shows him sitting on a plastic bucket in the garage of his house. “I’m renting out my house right now to try and make ends meet myself.”
The Times article said Price’s decision ended up costing him a few customers and two of his “most valued” employees, who quit after newer employees ended up with bigger salary hikes than older ones.
“He gave raises to people who have the least skills and are the least equipped to do the job, and the ones who were taking on the most didn’t get much of a bump,” Gravity financial manager Maisey McMaster, 26, told the paper.
She said when she talked to Price about it, he treated her as if she was being selfish and only thinking about herself.
“That really hurt me,” she said. “I was talking about not only me, but about everyone in my position.”
Approaching burnout, she quit.
I have come to believe that what makes a man conservative is simply understanding economics and human nature. On the other hand, I suppose there are leftist leaders … Castro, Mao, Obama, Chavez … who don’t necessarily misunderstand them so much as exploit the ignorance of their followers on those topics.
Chris Matthews: What’s the difference between the Democratic Party and Socialist?
Debbie Wasserman Schultz: (Speechless) (Laugh)
Matthews: I used to think there’s a big difference. What do you think it is?
Wasserman Schultz: Wuh… The difference between…
Matthews: Like Democrat Hillary Clinton and Socialist Bernie Sanders?… Well what’s the big difference between the Democrat Party and Socialist. You’re chairman of the Democratic Party. Tell me the difference between you and a Socialist?…
Wasserman Schultz: (She won’t answer) The relevant debate we will be having over the course of this campaign is what’s the difference between a Democrat and a Republican.
There is no way for her to answer that question without offending some part of the Democrat base. She can’t say, “we believe in the free market,” or “we believe in capitalism.” Half the Democrat base is hardcore socialist, and the other half is willing to go along with socialism for the sake of identity politics like gay marriage and #blacklivesmatter.
Apparently, those ideas include “A woman enjoys intercource with her man — as she fantasizes about being raped by 3 other men simultaneously.” And “A man goes home masturbates to his typical fantasy. A woman on her knees, a woman tied up, a woman abused.” And a firm conviction that there are too many brands of deodorant out there, consarn-it!
Contemplate how much left-wing delusion and narcissism is tied up in this poster. “Bernie Sanders is a smart and serious person because he agrees with me. I am smarter and more serious than those who don’t agree with me and Bernie Sanders. Eventually, everyone will see that we are right because they will want to be smart like us.”
And, for realz, is Bernie Sanders really that different than any other Democrat except for maybe being slightly… slightly… more open about his socialism?
H/T: Sondra K
Hillary “the Iron Dingbat” Clinton wants you to buy this pillow for $50 to help her get elected. (Hey, it’s only 1/6000 the price of a Hillary speech)
With purchase of 5000 or more, you’re entitled to her support for the policy of your choice.
Or, and her Socialist Democrat alternative, Comrade Senator Bernie Sanders, thinks there are too many kinds of deodorant; an example of decadent capitalist excess. In a centrally planned socialist economy as he would like the USA to be, there would be one brand of deodorant, which you would wait in line for six hours to purchase and it would fall apart at first use.
In 1849, a group of proto-socialists calling themselves the “Icarians” moved into an abandoned Mormon settlement in Nauvoo, Illinois. Their intent was to create a utopian society based on collectivism and equality.
Like the modern left, they were enthralled with a charismatic leader, Etienne Cabet. Like the modern left, they were appalled by the “inequality” created by capitalism, and convinced that a collective social order would create equality.
Like the modern left, they were incapable of building anything on their own, but co-opted what had been built by an earlier, more industrious society. The Mormons, who had been driven out of Nauvoo a few years earlier, had left behind homes,shops and workplaces that were occupied by the Icarians.
Every Icarian was allotted two rooms and identical furniture. In a move that would have gladdened MSNBC, children were separated from their parents and raised in collective-run schools. Religion was replaced with Sunday lectures on Icarian philosophy.
Within a few years, the socialist experiment failed, as their utopia collapsed due to “economic setbacks, policy disagreements and personal rivalries
Socialism has never, ever delivered on its promises; never, ever succeeded anywhere. And yet it will always be with us so long as there are people gullible enough to believe in its pipe dreams of equality and social justice and cynical autocrats willing to exploit those gullible idiots.
During a rally Friday, on International Workers’ Day, the socialist leader allowed a union activist to ask for the nationalization of food and essential-item distribution.
Citing new decree-making powers recently granted by the National Assembly, Maduro said he would carry out such a measure “in the coming days and weeks.”
Maduro had pledged earlier in the week to announce economic reforms.
Various estimates suggest the government already controls about half of the country’s food distribution, but that hasn’t stopped record shortages in shops and markets.
“Hasn’t stopped” being Leftist Journalese for “directly caused.”
Venezuela’s equivalents of Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer, and Rachel Maddow are already accusing critics of the plan of wanting people to starve. Because, according to the left, there is no way for people to have access to anything (health care, birth control, et c) unless it is directly provided to them or paid for by the Government.
Kevin Williamson at NRO points out that the Baltimore riots are a direct result of the Democrat leadership of that city; a city with no Republicans in any positions of city Government, in the bluest state in the country. Baltimore is a one-party Democrat-run city, and the same can be said of Detroit, St. Louis, Newark, Atlanta and most other large cities that have not seen a Republican mayor since before the advent of color television. Williamson catalogs the failings of Democrat city governments, but he doesn’t really explain how dysfunction is rooted in the Democrat style of politics.
As I have often said, the Democrat Party has one value proposition: We’re going to take money away from people you don’t like and spend it on you. This model has been highly successful in large urban areas and in the last two presidential elections. It is a highly effective message for the greedy, entitled, low-information voters that make up the Democrat base. It is not, however, an effective strategy for actual governance. It is, in fact, the root of why Democrat governance is so dysfunctional.
In real life, how the Democrat value proposition plays out is, “We’re going to take money from people you don’t like, use it to create massive, bloated government bureaucracies where we can give our cronies do-nothing, no-show jobs and also divert a lot of that money to our business cronies who contributed to our campaigns, and whatever is left will trickle down to you in the form of lousy Government services [think inner city schools] and welfare payments that are just enough to keep you in poverty and demanding more.”
In the Democrat model, businesses that employ people and indeed people employed by the private sector are the enemy. The Democrat base is constantly told that businesses are greedy, and that they “owe” the community their “fair share.” And even when businesses try to do good for the community, they are attacked for not doing enough, or for doing it in the wrong way.
In this way, Democrats justify constant increases in taxes and regulations on businesses; and also make sure businesses contribute to the party in a kind of protection racket. However, it also drives businesses out of Democrat-run areas, or out of business entirely, creating unemployment. Democrats are by and large OK with this because welfare recipients are loyal voters; but a model in which ever fewer working people are supporting ever greater numbers of welfare recipients and government bureaucrats is unsustainable. Government, despite the “you didn’t build that” claims of Barack Obama and Liz Warren, creates nothing; it only takes. And it can only be sustained by economic growth in the private sector, which Democrat policies stifle.
Democrats also must villainize Republicans to make sure no alternative to their party exists. They tell blacks, “Republicans want to bring back slavery.” They tell gays, “Republicans want to outlaw sex and make it legal to kill you.” They tell single women, “Republicans will outlaw contraception.” They tell Hispanics, “Republicans want to secure the border and stop you from illegally taking American jobs.” None of these is true, but by demonizing Republicans, Democrats assure dysfunction by denying political alternatives, and by allowing their constituents to ignore the causes and effects of their own dysfunction. Contrary to Al Sharpton, Barack Obama, and guilt-ridden white liberals, the dysfunction of the black community is not the fault of Caucasian Americans. But it is politically potent for Democrats to tell African-Americans that they are the victims of White America. As such, there is no incentive for the black community to introspectively examine black-on-black violence, broken and dysfunctional families, or their rotten (Democrat-run) education systems. Those who acknowledge the dysfunction are decried as racists.
Democrats win election by stoking resentments, scapegoating productive people for the failures of unproductive people, looting the public treasury, and making monsters out of their opponents. These policies win elections very effectively particularly where voters are uneducated and ill-informed (i.e. dependent on Democrat-run schools and Democrat-run media), but as a strategy of governance, they are inherently dysfunctional. The resentments become hatred and violence, the productive people abandon the dysfunction until the dysfunctional are a voting majority, the public treasury is robbed bare, and you end up with… Detroit, Newark, Baltimore, St. Louis, Providence, Bridgeport, Camden, and all the other one-party urban hellholes, basically.
Democrats think that the dysfunction can be papered over by spending more of other people’s money. But that only works while there is money to spend. The country is broke, which is why I think Baltimore is just the prelude of what’s to come.
The head of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (an Obama appointee) admitted in a congressional hearing that her department no longer enforces the immigration laws written and passed by Congress; but is focused solely on complying with the unlawful edicts of the Emperor.
(Iowa Congressman) Young asked Saldana if Obama’s comments concerned her in any way, given the implication that Obama was asking ICE to enforce his own directive, and not US law.
“I’m trying to be honest with you, sir,” Saldana replied. “No.”
Saldana then had the nerve to compare Obama’s directive to ignore/violate the immigration law to a normal directive any company or congressman might give an employee or staff person.
Flooding America with unskilled, subliterate third-worlders is a key pillar of Obama’s plan to tear down the USA. Republicans, unfortunately, are fully on board with this plan.
Speaking of socialists on a mission to destroy America, the National Labor Relations Board, which is packed with radical union activists, is working on a scheme to gut Right-to-Work laws passed by nearly half the states, by looking for some kind of “Executive Action” that would force non-union workers to pay dues to unions.
Refresher: The Federal Reserve Bank is not a government agency. It is the world’s largest private bank. Government has given it special privileges to basically:
So, from The Hill’s coverage of Janet Yellen’s testimony to Congress on Wednesday:
The biggest challenge to the Fed’s structure is the growing movement to Audit the Fed via legislation from Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.)…
A GOP-controlled Congress has given the bill its best chances yet of passage, and that renewed interest led Yellen to deliver her most spirited opposition yet.
“I want to be completely clear,” she said. “I strongly oppose Audit the Fed.”
Hat tip, ZH.
Last month, there was a brief internet infatuation with James Robertson, a resident of the Democrat Stronghold of Detroit, Michigan. People were inspired by his 20 mile daily commute… on foot… to his factory job, and were so moved that they raised over $3oo,000 for him on GoFundMe, and a local Ford dealership presented him with a new car. And this was all done voluntary, without any bureaucratic coercion from the Federal Government, because people wanted to show support for someone who demonstrated good values and a good work ethic.
But after his story went viral, the parasites who make up the city that has been run (into the ground) by progressive left Democrats for fifty years decided that Robertson should… gee, how to say it… “Spread the wealth around.”
After that, everybody knew him. And everybody wanted something. The neighborhood started showing up on his porch with their palms out, though Robertson has yet to receive any of the money. His girlfriend — the one who owns the house and charges him 200 bucks for the bedroom — demanded a payout, he said. So did her ex-husband who lives with them. So did her adult son who lives with them. So did the other dude who lives with them.
Safe bet that none of those people would ever walk 20 miles a day to get to a job. The upshot is, Robertson had to move to a secret location, under police protection, because in Detroit, if people think you have some money, they will kill you to get to it.
I just wonder where they got the idea that just taking stuff from people who are better off than you was fair and just.
The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 26% of Likely U.S. Voters think the president should have the right to ignore federal court rulings if they are standing in the way of actions he feels are important for the country. Sixty percent (60%) disagree and say the president should not have the right to ignore the courts. Fifteen percent (15%) are undecided.
But perhaps more unsettling to supporters of constitutional checks and balances is the finding that 43% of Democrats believe the president should have the right to ignore the courts. Only 35% of voters in President Obama’s party disagree.
That should be horrifying.
Picking this up from V’s post of a week or two ago, Elizabeth Warren does not understand why people think she’s a socialist.
(Please, I need a moment to stop giggling. It’s as if President Obama were to say he does not understand why people think he’s a liar. Air gasp. OK, I think I can go on.) – Warren said:
I just don’t know where [people] get that [idea of her being a socialist]. You know, look at the issues. I mean really, let’s take a look at minimum wage — I just believe nobody should work full time and live in poverty…Student loans: I don’t think the U.S. government should be making tens of billions of dollars in profits off the backs of our students, which is what the current student loan system is doing…
Never mind that Warren proposes the U.S. government to *lose* tens of billions of dollars on student loans. Let’s go straight to Kevin Williamson, defining socialism:
The current Random House Dictionary definition of “socialism” is serviceable but dated: “a theory or system of social organization that advocates the vesting of the ownership and control of the means of production and distribution, of capital, land, etc., in the community as a whole.”…
[Dated, because] It should read “ownership -or- control” rather than “ownership -and- control.” As we have seen in the cases of enterprises such as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, it is entirely possible for government economic planners to intervene deeply (and, in this familiar case, catastrophically) in the economy while maintaining private economic forms…
A more complete definition of socialism incorporates two criteria: The first is that socialism entails the public provision of non-public goods. The second is the use of central planning to implement that policy.
And that, Liz, is why you are a socialist.
For the record: I don’t and I don’t. So, I’m not.
The Democrat Mayor of New York City spent his college breaks helping the Communist Regime in Nicaragua, and honeymooned in Communist Cuba.
Let’s just stop pretending the Democrat Party isn’t what it denies being.
Cuba has managed some impressive accomplishments. Cuba’s government boasts the highest literacy rates for its population of any nation in the hemisphere. Cuba claims its citizens enjoy universal access to health care and more doctors per capita than any other nation in the Americas. Cuba’s doctors, reportedly, have high quality medical training.
Unlike other Caribbean islands where poverty means starvation, all Cubans receive a monthly food ration book that provides for their basic necessities.
Mr Kennedy, we do have places in America where the Government provides everybody with a daily food ration and state-provided health care, as well as guaranteed shelter, clothing, and literacy programs. They are called ‘prisons.’
Is there any point to having 100% literacy if the only thing you are allowed to read is Government propaganda? Is there any point to universal health care if you have no freedom to enjoy life? If the Government provides you a daily ration of food but provides you no freedom, then how is that any different than a rancher providing hay and grain to his cattle?
This kid’s got a pretty good shot at being the next Al Sharpton; of course, he hasn’t gotten anyone killed yet. So that’s kind of a deal breaker, I guess.
Joshua Williams has been everywhere: protesting in Ferguson, Mo., Washington, D.C., and Cleveland, Ohio. Now, he is in St. Louis, where police have arrested him for arson.
Williams has been portrayed in the media as an innocent victim fighting back against authority; he has been held up as the quintessential Ferguson protestor, decrying police brutality as he is time and again brutalized by police. When Williams interrupted a Ferguson City Council meeting in September and the meeting descended into chaos, for example, the New York Times published a photo of his disruptive antics with a caption that said that he had only “posed a question to the City Council.”
On the night after Christmas, St. Louis County Police arrested Williams on suspicion of arson in a separate incident. Williams was reportedly involved in the looting and burning of a QuikTrip convenience store on Christmas Eve in Berkeley, Mo., a St. Louis suburb approximately two miles away from Ferguson.
To the Progressive Left, acts of political violence are resume enhancers. Just ask Che Guevara, Professor Bill Ayers, Mumia Abu Jamal, and Kathy Boudin. Joshua Williams has a promising future as an MSDNC host, a tenured professor at a liberal university, or maybe even leverage his Community Organizer experience into a political career.
Whatever the merits of Obama’s opening to the hardcore Communist regime in Cuba, one curious side effect is the number of leftists who fear that economic ties to the USA might bring about prosperity and freedom to Castro’s Tropic Island Gulag.
National Post reporter Adrian Humphreys offered “advice to Canadian travelers: book your trip to Cuba now before it gets a McDonalds and Walmart in Havana.”
Sacramento Bee writer Marcos Breton warned “Cuba & it’s people…[to] beware [of] Pizza Hut, McDonalds, American Idol & Khardashians [sic].”
Adam Parker, a journalist at Charleston’s The Post and Courier, asked “How long do you think it will take for McDonald’s and Chick-fil-A to expand their empires?” And Fox News’s Shepard Smith instructed Cubans that “the last thing they need is a Taco Bell or a Lowe’s,” wondering if the United States is “about to get up in there and ruin that place.”
If these hipster pinkos really seem to believe that Wal-Marts and Taco Bells are worse than gulags and work camps, then there are a lot of other countries they should probably be living in. And they can take Khadija “I hate this f-ing country” Lynch with ‘em.
Cuba has long been a Socialist Disneyland to the American Left, who just wish they could butcher all of the middle class people who disagree with them, as did their hero, Che Guevara. The prospect that the poverty and oppression Che Guevara and the Castros have inflicted on their people might be relieved is insufferable to them.
EJI is proud to announce the release of our 2015 calendar, A History of Racial Injustice. This full-color wall calendar expands on EJI’s previous calendars with new historical entries and short essays highlighting historical events and issues in our nation’s racial history.
The 2015 calendar is part of a series of reports and educational materials that explore (America’s) legacy of … slavery, racial terror, and legally supported abuse of racial minorities.
Then again, this calendar may not be for you guys, because some elements of the Racial Justice Movement have decided that Gays are the Oppresor.
We can no longer sit idly by as you, mainstream LGBT organizations, center your movements and advocacy work on some within our varied communities but not others. We are no longer OK with the mainstream LGBT organizations among you who signal your complicity in anti-Black violence through your loud silence and deliberate ignoring of the types of systemic, institutionalized forms of anti-Black racism that negatively impact Black queer and trans people (and all Black people), disallow Black well-being, and deaden us.
Imagine the dillema now faced by Chris Lemon, Michael Sam, and RuPaul.
A friend recently reminded me of this:
Marxists’ Apartment A Microcosm Of Why Marxism Doesn’t Work
Nov 13, 2002
AMHERST, MA—The filthy, disorganized apartment shared by three members of the Amherst College Marxist Society is a microcosm of why the social and economic utopia described in the writings of Karl Marx will never come to fruition, sources reported Monday. (more…)