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Kotik’s descriptions of the Jews’ lives in the Russian Empire, and the survival strategies that they used in that deeply hostile environment, seem to presage the current infatuation with the Dems. The Jews in the Pale of Settlement feared the local peasants more than anything else, so what they did was form a symbiotic relationship with the Empire, on the one hand, and the local gentry on the other. The Empire and the gentry provided physical protection (mostly in the form of deterrence) to the Jews. The Jews, in turn, provided local administrative services to the Empire, and being literate, provided estate management services to the gentry, who were mostly illiterate and mostly interested in drinking, hunting and gambling. This seemed to work pretty well. Local Jewish big shots (like my possible ancestor Aharon Layser) became rich and powerful, and after the Polish Uprising of 1863 was crushed, acquired many of the estates of the rebellious gentry (who got killed or exiled by the Empire) who used to be their accounting clients.
The basic model is this: suck up to an all-powerful State, and manipulate it for gain at the expense of the rest of the population. The Kotiks, and many other Jewish families, also got into the liquor business, so there was a bit of the old opiate-of-the-masses thing going on , too, with regard to the locals.
Well, isn’t this what the current strategy of American Jews reduces to?
Trouble is, of course, that it comes to no good end. The peasants and the gentry eventually catch on. It is also a creepy, and profoundly un-American way to get along.
What I cannot for the life of me understand is how it can be that American Jews can’t figure this out. Whether the Democrat thing has its roots in the shtetl or in FDR, how the hell does an idea that is so obviously bogus persist? Seriously ! It isn’t really in the genes, is it? So what gives?p>On another note, I have a serious criticism of your work as columnists : your columns are too few and too short. I’m certain it is great fun screwing around with your legal and show business hobbies, but it seems to me that at your ages you should spend more time on serious things. br> — Paul Kotik br> Plantation, FL /p>
Great article. But please include Milton Friedman as one of the most important scientists of the 20th century, and perhaps of all time.
His research, detailed in Monetary History of the United States, placed the country on the path to economic stability.
Without his analysis, the U.S. would still be slamming from inflation to deflation, from boom to bust, from Republican sensibility to Democrat corruption.
Recall the situation at the end of the 1920s when the Great Contraction in money occurred, following the roaring economy of the previous decades. The collapse that followed brought in sixty years of incompetent, and venal Democrat rule. It has taken till today to rid the country of this plague.
A similar situation would’ve occurred following the latest “bubble” if the Federal Reserve had allowed another collapse in the American economy. The Democrats would’ve pandered to the country’s worst fears, gotten themselves re-elected, and bungled foreign policy bad enough to get us in a real shooting war, instead of the police actions we’re in now.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?