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  • The Rampant Arrogance of the Government Class and the Decline of American Liberty

    Posted by David Foster on January 5th, 2012 (All posts by )

    A 16-year-old girl in Florida parked in the wrong space, had her car keyed, suspected another girl, and posted on her own Facebook page the following:

    oh so you keyed my car? well your karmas gonna be a wholeee lot worse that that

    The next day, school officials suspended her for three days–and a criminal charge of “stalking” was brought against her by the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Department

    As Scott Greenfield says:

    To call the arrest of Allie Scott crazy is to state the obvious. That both a school district and a sheriff’s office would nonetheless indulge in such insanity is the piece that would make a good subject for Kafka.

    Other incidents of Kafkaesque abuse of authority by public school officials and local police departments are easy to find.

    For most of history, in most places in the world, people have lived in fear of The Authorities. For a couple of centuries, that fear was largely lifted (with certain obvious exceptions) in the territory of The United States of America. Now, as a result of the endless expansion of governmental powers and the political and administrative arrogance which have inevitably followed, it is returning. The American populace is being collectively cowed.

    See my related posts zero tolerance-zero judgment-zero compassion and Philip Queeg Public High School.

     

    15 Responses to “The Rampant Arrogance of the Government Class and the Decline of American Liberty”

    1. Anonymous Says:

      Some years ago (50) a friend and I brought a giant Ex-Lax bar of “chocolate” – distributed it among our classmates telling them it was a Hershey Bar.

      Next day half the class was absent.

      No doubt today we would be labelled “terrorists” ;-)

      To the question at hand it has gone beyond stupid. But then it reflects a larger trend in our society where legality and morality and common sense have all agreed to go their separate ways.

      Like the kid who finally stands up to the bully, beats him up – and he is the one in trouble.

    2. David Foster Says:

      See also this from the pundit David Frum, who apparently was once actually considered to be a conservative. Frum thinks we must **reorganize our entire society** to reduce obesity–including “the redesign of cities, the relocation of schools, the reinvention of our modes of eating and amusement”

    3. Michael Kennedy Says:

      Poor Frum. He once explained to me that he had never been invited to a National Review Cruise. He never got over it.

    4. Cris Says:

      The worst aspect of the higher education bubble is becoming more and more apparent: Stupid people are running things.

    5. Percy Dovetonsils Says:

      Bloody Frum. I wouldn’t trust our “betters” to walk my dog, much less redesign society to “fight” obesity.

      So, history buffs – what parallels are there in history where significant proportions of an advanced industrialized society lose complete and utter faith in governing, educational and large business institutions?

      (I’m not sure I want to know the answer to that.)

    6. Andrew X Says:

      The Prophet Mark Steyn (PBUH) wrote something to the effect that a true indicator of a society in decline is when it’s law enforcers turn their eyes from those committing real and genuine crimes to those who are not, and thus the real criminals have no reason to fear the authorities, while the average citizen is given more and more reasons on a daily basis.

      And of course, who is easier to go after so you can go home convinced that you helped to “make a better world for all”, serial killers and rapists or 16-year old facebook posters? After all, you get paid the same either way.

      And down we go…..

    7. PenGun Says:

      There are parallels to the Roman Empire in America’s decline. It’s interesting that the use of mercenaries by the Romans was a precursor to their eventual fall.

      Anyway the point I would like to make is an unusual one. As a Buddhist the concept of Karma is a recognition that the Universe being one thing, it did come from one place after all, balances it’s self. The universe balances it’s self through the action of Karma, the law of cause and effect writ large. Simply this means everyone gets what they deserve all the time.

      If you consider the actions America is responsible for then the present situation is about what you would expect, well unless you have the view that the US is god’s gift to the world that is.

      My point is you get what you deserve. The trick is to deserve good things and not bad things.

    8. tyouth Says:

      As a counterpoint to the high school kid in Pinellas County FL, I wonder if y’all heard about the boy in Collier County, FL that had his case dismissed after stabbing and killing another boy?

      I won’t say that I have my facts 100% correct here, but, essentially: a younger kid was being harassed by a slightly older and larger boy. Two or three months ago the bully went out of his way to be at the kid’s bus top after school. The bully went after the kid and got a pocket knife in his ribs or stomach for his efforts and he died. The killer had his case dismissed this week with the judge citing Florida’s “Stand your ground law”.

      (BTW, and just in case it’s consequential, Pinellas Co. is a very blue area and Collier county is very red.)

    9. Nicholas Says:

      Her Karma was run over by a Dogma.

    10. Percy Dovetonsils Says:

      “It’s interesting that the use of mercenaries by the Romans was a precursor to their eventual fall.”

      To use a phrase from Mencken: “idjit.”

    11. sol Says:

      A young girl has her property damaged. When she complains and predicts the person who damaged her property will have bad karma, the young girl is punished and the vandal is praised.

      What is more important – human rights or property rights?

      Obviously her school favors human rights and punishes people who defend their own property “rights”. Indeed, many people argue we live in an age in which no person can claim he “owns” something and can prevent others from using it or destroying it.

      Other people have a stake in our property and their stake is greater than any property right that we may claim.

      “Owning” property confers no “rights” – but ownership does impose an obligation on the owner to maintain the property to the satisfaction of its stakeholders.

      The woman who keyed the young girl’s car has the human rights of free speech, self-expression and self-esteem. When the young girl predicted the woman’s karma would be bad, her slander attacked these precious human rights and needed to be punished. It is the same as crying fire in a crowded theatre.

    12. tehag Says:

      Yes, the universe must remain in balance between good and evil. The USA helped defeat Kaiserism, fascism, nazism, and communism. The blowback to re-establish “balance” in the Buddhist and karmic sense will be terrible. So much evil seeking revenge for being defeated.

    13. David Foster Says:

      See The New Authoritarianism in City Journal. The authors cite a piece by Joe Klein of Time, who believes that:

      Obama is burdened by governing a “nation of dodos” that is “too dumb to thrive,” as the title of his story puts it, without the guidance of our president.

      Poor Joe Klein. It must be painful to view oneself as a universal genius capable of directing the affairs of hundreds of millions of people, while writing for a publication that is apparently read mainly by bored people waiting at dentists’ offices and similar places.

    14. sol Says:

      Joe Klein praised Pot Pol when he emptied the cities and executed 2 million cambodians (back when he worked for Time). Joe Klein marches to a marxist drummer.

    15. tyouth Says:

      What is troubling to me is that the evidence of Obama being elected points to Klein being right.