HATS OFF TO Stephen Moore and Peter Ferrara for “The Poverty of Equality” in the April issue of The American Spectator.
While the authors’ arguments are cogent—and thanks also for reminding us about Kurt Vonnegut’s classic story about equality taken to its logical extreme—Vonnegut was actually naïve about (and the authors’ failed to point out) the most likely political outcome.
The Handicapper General and her agents may have been unceasingly vigilant, but don’t forget there would have been a select few with exemptions. All such exemptions—either partial or even total—would have had perfectly rational foundations, but for some unexplainable reason, most of these would have been given to supporters of the Administration.
You see, those with the power to impose draconian laws also hold the power to grant exemptions to those laws, and thereby augment their power, prestige, and wealth.
In the meantime, however, the authors provide a service by rightly pointing out that if the Left has convinced everyone to discuss the merits of how income is “distributed,” it already has a leg up in persuading the public about “fairness.” Indeed, the correct descriptor for wealth is “created,” which immediately illuminates the inherent differences that accrue to the creators.
— Bob Tucker, Tucson, AZ
MESSRS. MOORE AND FERRARA give a thorough and lucid analysis of the dysfunction of Liberalism in “The Poverty of Equality.” Using Vonnegut’s “Harrison Bergeron” was a nice touch; the image of Handicapper General Diana Moon Glampers self-righteously wielding her double-barreled shotgun has lingered in my mind since college. But, alas, their effort is largely a waste of ink and paper.
It’s like a person carefully and earnestly explaining the terrible consequences of alcohol abuse to an alcoholic, expecting that he will be persuaded to stop drinking. He doesn’t drink because he thinks he should; he drinks because he needs to drink. An addiction is a coup d’état from the heart, not the head. The need makes itself 1st priority; all other priorities are rescinded.
Liberalism is an addiction to power. Liberals don’t seek power because they think that they can really produce the utopia they promise. They seek power because they feel the need to control the rest of us. What we need is intervention, not persuasion, nor negotiation. (Speaker Boehner, can you take the hint?) So what to do?
This road won’t be easy or short, but it does lead to where we want to be: an America without modern Liberalism. A land where schoolchildren are as astonished to learn that people once thought it would be a good idea to have politicians control who gets to see a doctor, as they are now to learn that people once thought that skin color should determine who gets to eat at a lunch counter. The path of persuasion, when dealing with our real-life Handicapper General Glampers, is a dead end.
— Jeffrey Payne, Winter Springs, FL
MOST EDUCATED AMERICANS vaguely remember that the amendment granting women the right to vote was passed by Congress in 1919 and ratified by the states in 1920. But the number of people who know anything about the forty-year legislative war that preceded that victory is smaller than the audience of MSNBC. That war began in 1878, when a California Republican named A.A. Sargent introduced the 19th Amendment only to see it voted down by a Democrat-controlled Congress. It finally ended four decades later, when the Republicans won landslide victories in the House and the Senate, giving them the power to pass the amendment despite continued opposition from most elected Democrats—including President Woodrow Wilson, to whom the suffragettes frequently referred as “Kaiser Wilson.”
— David Catron, Republicans and Women’s Rights: A Brief Reality Check, April 30
MITT ROMNEY might very well be the least hip presidential candidate since Nixon set foot on a beach. As such he would be well advised to refrain from asking “Who let the dogs out?” ever again (unless, of course, said dogs found themselves on the menu of the next White House State Dinner.… But three and a quarter years of Obama plus the trillions added to our debt is more than enough drama for a lifetime. At least four years of boredom is exactly what this country needs.
— Aaron Goldstein, The Most Boring Man in the World, April 24
An article in the may issue, ‘Incumbency Shakers,’ misstated biographical details of the Texas developer backing the Campaign for Primary Accountability. The CFPA donor, Leo Linbeck III, has not helped promote the Fair Tax. That plan’s booster is his father, Leo Linbeck Jr.