From the Super Committee and Occupy to climate change and Penn State.
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• The Super Committee: The white and black jersey teams are nicely apparent here in the form of twelve people, equally divided between Republicans and Democrats. They are busy passing around their respective two balls to their teammates. The nation, anticipating nightmarish visions of looming travel on the most traveled holiday of the year, watches with distracted fascination, if that. Will they make the deadline? Yes? No? Maybe? Last night the answer came in: No deal.
Why? Into all of this commotion strolled the Invisible Gorilla.
The argument that the rich are not being taxed enough is the equivalent here of being told to count the passes by the team in the white jerseys. The argument that more spending cuts have to be achieved is the equivalent of making sure that passes from the team of black jerseys are not counted. All of these endless discussions about cutting or not cutting here and taxing or not taxing there are in fact based on ignoring the Invisible Gorilla sitting right in the center seat of the Super Committee.
And this Invisible Gorilla has a name.
When Massachusetts Senator John Kerry says, for example, “To have something on the table that does not ask the wealthiest people in the country to share [the burden] … is unconscionable” (this, mind you, from a wealthy politician who had his 76-foot luxury yacht parked out of state — in Rhode Island — which neatly avoided the Massachusetts sales tax that would have cost him $437,500 plus an annual state excise tax that tallied $70,000), the Invisible Gorilla has begun thumping its chest in the Capitol Hill hearing room.
The name of this Invisible Gorilla is…Resentment.
Or, as the famous Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises succinctly put it:
…the socialist idea is nothing but a grandiose rationalization of petty resentments… political art [as] political tactics…[those who] have elaborated the technique of agitation, the cadging for votes and for souls, the stirring up of electoral excitement, the street demonstrations, and the terrorism…
This is the Invisible Gorilla appearing inside the Super Committee. The greed for iron-fisted political power as fueled by resentment. The very same Invisible Gorilla that has been busy Occupying Wall Street. To spend time having endless discussions about job creation, basic economics, budget cuts, or raising taxes — or the pros and cons of the latest from the Occupiers of New York’s Zuccotti Park or Oakland or anywhere else — is, practically speaking, close to useless, as the Super Committee’s failure demonstrates anew. It is to quite deliberately ignore the Invisible Gorilla in the room (or the park) that is named Resentment (or Envy or Class Warfare). Although, in this clip from a recent Iowa debate, Newt Gingrich did pretty well at identifying the Invisible Gorilla.
• Climate Change: The white jersey team and the black jersey teams have more players when it comes to discussing climate change. A considerable mix of scientists, politicians and pundits are wearing the white and black. But let’s focus on just one instance of countless numbers of incidents to see if you can spot the Invisible Gorilla here.
In a recent column in the Washington Post Kathleen Parker gets down to the task of having you count the passing among the white jerseys when she writes of what she calls the “Palinization” of the GOP. She begins this way:
The headline on Democratic strategist Paul Begala’s recent Newsweek essay dodged subtlety: “The Stupid Party.”
“Republicans used to admire intelligence. But now they’re dumbing themselves down,” was the subhead.
Democrats couldn’t agree more. And quietly, many Republicans share the sentiment. They just can’t seem to stop themselves.
She goes on to attribute this alleged stupidity to, but of course, former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin. And she specifically — white jersey counters at the ready please — cites the issue of climate change to make her point, praising GOP presidential candidate and former Utah Governor Jon Huntsman along the way.
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.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?
H/T to National Review Online