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  • Quote of the Day

    Posted by Jonathan on March 18th, 2016 (All posts by )

    Glenn Reynolds:

    The Tea Party movement — which you also failed to understand, and thus mostly despised — was a bourgeois, well-mannered effort (remember how Tea Party protests left the Mall cleaner than before they arrived?) to fix America. It was treated with contempt, smeared as racist, and blocked by a bipartisan coalition of business-as-usual elites. So now you have Trump, who’s not so well-mannered, and his followers, who are not so well-mannered, and you don’t like it.

     

    32 Responses to “Quote of the Day”

    1. Sgt. Mom Says:

      Copy and paste of a comment that I left on The Diplomad’s site, on this very subject:

      “I was involved in a local Tea Party effort – and yes, we were quite aware that we would elect candidates who would suddenly discover the seductions of being part of the ‘in-group’ or who would have mouthed all the right fiscally-responsible, free-market and strict constitutionalist words. Yep, we were aware that we would probably have to go over and over again, until candidates got the point.

      And yes, we were aware that the Establishment GOP were not our friends – indeed, they looked on us at first as a nice handy cash cow for volunteers and donations, and were discomfited to discover that there are a lot of us and we were completely in earnest.

      No, the most appalling and disheartening part to me was the manner in which the Tea Party was slimed by the media and the cheap whores of the entertainment complex. Hardworking, responsible, educated and deeply-concerned citizens, honestly concerned and taking an interest in politics for perhaps the first time in decades — being painted as mouth-breathing, bigoted, violence-prone freaks. The viciousness of the abuse was absolutely breathtaking – and quite honestly, I hold a grudge against those who perpetuated it. For instance, I despise Anderson Cooper with the fury of a thousand burning sons.

      I shouldn’t be in the least surprised that quite a few other Tea Partiers feel the same way, about Cooper and other media enablers who cheerfully joined in the slanders and libels. In Trump they are getting what they deserved. I hope that he is making the usual suspects wet their pants with terror. They piled calumny upon calumny on earnest good citizens … so now reap what you have sown. You could have dealt fairly, honestly, responsibly and accurately with Tea Partiers – but for reasons of your own, Media Creatures, you chose the low road. Enjoy the trip.”

    2. TangoMan Says:

      The powers the be didn’t like the TEA Party and so they attacked it. No reforms arose from the TEA Party. Now comes Trump and he’s seen as worse than the TEA Party reformers. If they neutralize Trump, do they imagine that what comes after Trump is going to be better?

      I’m seeing this dynamic play out here and it’s playing out in Europe. It’s like a universal law and I’m puzzled that the PTB don’t see it. If you don’t want a Reich, then don’t create a Weimar. The action creates the reaction, the worse the action gets, the harsher comes the reaction. Good governance keeps society on an even keel.

      As for the media, it probably helps us all to internalize that they are the enemy, so when ordinary people become the target of irresponsible journalism they get a lesson in how contemporary America is structured that they otherwise might be ignorant of. Better to see the world without the rose-colored glasses.

    3. Eric Says:

      Sgt. Mom:
      “Hardworking, responsible, educated and deeply-concerned citizens, honestly concerned and taking an interest in politics for perhaps the first time in decades — being painted as mouth-breathing, bigoted, violence-prone freaks.”

      And? All you’re saying is activism is competitive.

      That the Tea Party movement organizers didn’t initially have a sufficient gameplan for confrontation by real competition is not good, but it’s also not unusual. Oftentimes, even if you know the theory of the game, you can’t fully diagnose the actual opposition until you’ve clashed in the arena. That’s not only true for activism. That goes for any kind of competition.

      However, that the Tea Party movement subsequently failed to adjust their gameplay once counter-attacked speaks poorly of Tea Party leadership.

      The Tea Party movement set out correctly as a much needed social activist movement. But when they faced real activist competition, they quit instead of adjusting their gameplay to win.

      Counter-example to the Tea Party quitting in the face of normal activist competitiion?

      The recent pro-military Ivy League campus movement spearheaded by student activists at Columbia University, which was famous for an anti-military reputation but is now ranked among the most military-friendly universities in the nation due to the efforts of Columbia pro-military activists.

      The Columbia pro-military activists were counter-attacked by Columbia’s renowned, vigilante campus Left, the same kind of SJWs running roughshod on campuses today.

      But unlike the Tea Party movement, the pro-military Columbia students understood and accepted the nature of the contest, absorbed the counter-attack, learned from their setbacks, and moved to counter the campus Left in an action they engineered into a springboard for the pro-military Ivy League campus movement.

      As far as the comparison of Tea Party to Trump phenomenon, did the Columbia pro-military activists turn mean and nasty in order to win their activist game? No. They kept their frame. The difference is, at the point of the game that the Tea Party ‘activists’ quit when confronted by real competition, the Columbia pro-military activists stayed tenacious, stood their ground, used their smarts, and adjusted to outplay their competition.

      If instead of quitting, Tea Party leadership had stood their ground and learned from their setbacks like the Columbia pro-military activists, and adjusted to normal activist competition to engineer their much needed social cultural/political movement, America would be better off today and on the right track.

      Sgt. Mom:
      “indeed, they looked on us at first as a nice handy cash cow for volunteers and donations”

      Reasonably so.

      The GOP at first embraced the Tea Party movement as a long needed counter on the national level to the Left-activist social movement that boosts the Democrats. The Democrats and Left have long shared a symbiotic relationship.

      At this point, the Left is the principal and the Democrats are the agent, but even before they flipped to their current relationship, the Democrats acceded to the Left’s demands because the Left paid the bills with its social activist movement.

      Not so the Tea Party. Seemingly as soon as they mustered enough influence (votes) to gain entry into the GOP that initially welcomed them, the Tea Party quit its social activist movement on the national level and thus reneged on its promise to pay the bills. Yet they continued to make demands of the GOP.

      It was the Tea Party that dropped its side of the transaction to the detriment of both parties and the rest of America. Yet Tea Party members blame the GOP for the fall-out. That’s the wrong lesson.

    4. Sgt. Mom Says:

      There is no Tea Party leadership, TM – it’s a distributed and leadership insurgency. And I can only address in this, the local party that I was a part of in 2009-2010.
      We had a program of outreach to deal with local media, which was quite successful, actually. But a leaderless and local-cell insurgency has not much of a base of power in dealing with national media.
      I don’t believe that those of Tea Partier sympathies can be written off as you seem inclined to do. We have only gone underground.

    5. David Foster Says:

      Hi Jonathan…sent you an email…not sure how often you check that mailbox

    6. Mike K Says:

      “But when they faced real activist competition, they quit instead of adjusting their gameplay to win.”

      No, they were savaged by the Obama IRS and some GOPe functionaries tried to take over. I was hoping they would infiltrate the local GOP committees and I still hope they do.

    7. Anonymous Says:

      @eric,

      Are you seriously comparing lower-level campus activism with activism in the higher-level political milieu?

      To say, “Counter-example to the Tea Party quitting in the face of normal activist competitiion [sic]?” hinges on what you mean by “normal activist competition,” especially the “normal” qualifier.

      The set-theoretic model of your claim I’m about to write up follows from the philosophical definition of qualitative identity (things are the same if they have the same properties/characteristics). Let’s look at what might make up the properties of “normal activist competition” in an intensive sense. Call this set NAC such that NAC = {set of all x in activist competition such that x is normal or N(x)}. So N(x) is the normal property of activist competition.

      Let’s now take a look at the extensive sense of this, where NAC = {issues, environment and systems outlook, assessing capabilities and power of rivals/adversaries, strategy (means, ends), logistics, …}. That’s not all of the things, but it’s enough to assess the inadequacy of your claim with respect to applying N(x) to the extensive set.

      You’ve stated that the only the thing that differs between the Tea Party and RTOC activists is their adaptation to competition (one quit, one adapted). So in essence, you should be committed to the claim that the N(x) in the Tea Party set, call this TP, and the N(x) in the RTOC set, call this RTOC, is the same with respect to normal activist competition. Or, TP = RTOC with respect to N(x).

      This is clearly false. Let’s look at the comparison between the TP and RTOC sets in light of the extensive definition of NAC. The TP had multiple issues and was a global (global in the sense of total system spread). The RTOC was a single issue and localized to a university (probably with sub-issues, but irrelevant to the argument here). The environment and systems for TP was the American political, legal, and economic system. RTOC involved a small subset of the universities and some other periphery systems (like legal and local leftist activists). The capabilities and power of the rivals is different. The TP had to deal with multiple different factions and elites (with different sizable war chests to deal economically with their rivals). Including backstabbing elites situated within their own family resemblance political positions. They also had to deal with a hostile worldwide media. RTOC had to deal with university admins and local leftists.

      I could go on like this, but that’s enough. The N(x) property — the normal activist competition — that is entailed by your commitments is nothing but normal in the case of the Tea Party set. If the RTOC set is normal, then the TP set must be above normal. Hence, the TP set is an amplification of the RTOC set in both complexity and breadth of competitive adaptation and your comparison doesn’t hold water.

    8. Anonymous Says:

      Tango,

      “No reforms arose from the TEA Party.”

      Well, perhaps from your perspective with a more or less single issue focus. The nation wide sweeping move toward increased gun carry, limits on abortion carnage, school choice, and state actions to increase illegal immigrant control and reduce magnets for them are all trends supported by the Tea Party movement. The fact that Cruz is a viable candidate for president is witness to the fruits of that movement. I’m not saying that there has been enough reform or gathering of political will, but Trump certainly shows that the will is growing even if it is not focused.

      Given that this is an ongoing process and the loss of the presidential race in 2012 was an important set back do not mean that the process stopped. Many of the Trump backers are former/current tea party. Many of Cruz backers are as well. If one adds those groups together, the anti-elite movement is growing and has produced results that bode well for an opportunity for fundamental reforms. It isn’t (I pray) going to be about establishing a new elite who espouses a different brand of centralized power. The tea party folks I know in the Trump camp are many of those who were most deeply disappointed, even wounded, in 2012 to the point of despair and are willing to bet that Trump can bring down the elite establishment in a resounding, deserved crash. Perhaps he can (not betting on it), but a bigger issue would result. What will take its place?

      I don’t want the Reich, but as you correctly pointed out we have a pretty good approximation of the Weimar with the left’s inroads into our cultural and moral identity substituting for us as the Treaty of Versailles. We can get rid of that without having to fight the rest of the world or attributing it to any specific subculture(s). It is an ideology and it crosses all cultural lines. It is empowered by our essentially monolithic educational system, starting in the institutions of “higher learning” and now entrenched right down to pre-K. It is funded by leftist true believers who have the funds largely accumulated through crony capitalism. Those structures most likely will only be blunted by reforms targeted to prevent and reduce monopolistic power through reduction of government’s authority to grant and protect it. This will have to be iterative process, not an event or a short term chain saw approach. But it could be immediately effective if the measures are aimed at the areas with largest payoff.

      We may be past the point where reform is possible. I don’t deny that, I fear it. But I’m pretty sure that the “bull in the china shop” approach guarantees an almost immediate collapse in social order and we get the Reich. My concern is that Trump leads to that scenario. I hope I’m wrong, but I am convinced there is a higher likelihood of that than not. The Hildebeast would move us appreciably further down that road that leads to disintegration as in Weimar.

      Death6

    9. Will Says:

      The Tea Party created panic the International had never seen the likes of in the U.S. (or possibly anywhere) Despite having their Nobel Prize winner with the agenda in place, I believe they seriously underestimated the prole response.

      They soon began to experience intense IRS scrutiny via the Kakistocracy, and were more or less put out of business. Actual amateur grassroots activism vs. the legacy mobs is extremely difficult. The internet has been indispensable in the unmasking of the networks and disseminating information, and may prove to be a real problem for Red/Green. Witness the uprisings in formerly milquetoast Europe to the immigration jihad.

    10. Michael Hiteshew Says:

      I agree that the longer the elite kleptocrat complex try to contain the pressure the worse the resultant detonation will be. Glenn jokes about hanging them from lampposts, but that’s where we’re headed.

    11. Will Says:

      Jeez, I hope not. I saw the Hungarian Prime Minister’s speech over at GOV. It sounds like he means business:

      https://youtu.be/EbINrdyAXlE

    12. Mike K Says:

      “If one adds those groups together, the anti-elite movement is growing and has produced results that bode well for an opportunity for fundamental reforms.”

      Yes, and I think Trump is part of it.

      I would like to see some mainstream Republicans, besides Sessions and Gingrich, join and I think they will but I hope it is not too late.

      I think Cruz is smart enough to join Trump and shut down the schemes of the GOPe. He would do well to be the VP with Trump and take over a couple of big tasks he is well suited for. The biggest is the dismantling of the administrative state.

      Trump will be 74 and probably not interested in a second term if Cruz is there to take over.

      This is a revolution and they can go badly wrong. There is still a chance to get it right.

      Personally, I don’t like Trump and think him a combination of Mussolini, Andrew Jackson and William Jennings Bryan, none of them Republicans.

      If Romney and the GOPe get their way, what comes next will be worse.

    13. Michael Hiteshew Says:

      I think Cruz is smart enough to join Trump and shut down the schemes of the GOPe. He would do well to be the VP with Trump…

      I don’t see how that’s possible, considering Trump has spent the last few months calling Cruz a Bible wielding pathological liar.

    14. TangoMan Says:

      We can get rid of that without having to fight the rest of the world or attributing it to any specific subculture(s).

      What’s the point of history if we can’t learn from it? If we have to address the Weimar, there is more than one path we can follow, so we don’t necessarily have to go to the Reich, but the trouble is that I don’t see a way to remedy the ills of the Weimar while simultaneously respecting principles of liberty.

      It is an ideology and it crosses all cultural lines. It is empowered by our essentially monolithic educational system, starting in the institutions of “higher learning” and now entrenched right down to pre-K. It is funded by leftist true believers who have the funds largely accumulated through crony capitalism.

      Civilization must be maintained. Leftism is disorder, it is entropy. When we no longer expend the effort to maintain civilization, it reduces to lower levels of order. When I look at the Leftist capture of the institutions, what I see is civilization giving up the fight and allowing disorder and decay to take over.

      Maintaining civilization is a much easier task then letting it decay and then building it back up.

      . The tea party folks I know in the Trump camp are many of those who were most deeply disappointed, even wounded, in 2012 to the point of despair and are willing to bet that Trump can bring down the elite establishment in a resounding, deserved crash. Perhaps he can (not betting on it), but a bigger issue would result. What will take its place?

      Some situations result in no solutions being available to resolve the problem. Given a set of constraints, there is no solution set possible. I think that this is the case. To resolve the problem requires some of the constraints being eliminated.

      No elite faction goes into the night quietly. Trump may purge some of the Right’s ideological warriors, hopefully the Neocon faction, but the donor class will stay intact. So long as the donor class is focused solely on economic returns for themselves and displays no Nobless Oblige to the ordinary folks, so long as they are internationalist/cosmopolitian in outlook rather than nationalist, Trump won’t resolve the problem. Every little bit he does destroy is for the good but, I fear, he won’t be the agent to bring about a burning it all down outcome. He is, after all, a man who is part of the elite class, and while a traitor to his class, he’s unlikely to take direct action against the class because of his personal relationships (he’s not going to want to harm Icahn, Wynn, his in-laws, etc) and because he wants to convey advantages to his children and grandchildren. He will alter the trajectory of the Republican Party, and considering business as usual is not that attractive a path, a redirection down some unknown path at least holds a promise of something better, but the fundamental order will still remain intact.

      Secondly, so long as people can avoid addressing a societal problem, they will and they’ll follow the path which offers the least resistance, so we’re not going to make any progress on the cancer of multiculturalism, on disengaged society, on values and morals. Even the Christians have given up their fight, they send missionaries to Africa instead of to Hollywood.

      Those structures most likely will only be blunted by reforms targeted to prevent and reduce monopolistic power through reduction of government’s authority to grant and protect it. This will have to be iterative process, not an event or a short term chain saw approach. But it could be immediately effective if the measures are aimed at the areas with largest payoff.

      An iterative pullbacks simply keeps the Left’s gains locked in. Conservatives become the defenders of current society. They stop future reform but do nothing to undo the damage already done.

      Government has a huge impact in the lives of us all simply because Government is everywhere. Once it is everywhere it develops constituencies to protect their own particular benefit. We see this continuously, people want government cut back in general, just not their programs. So I don’t really see democratic action to reduce government being successful. The way forward is to capture government, purge leftists from within, and then change direction of the agency and freeze spending and allow economic growth to increase the numerator of the equation while we keep the denominator constant.

      When you focus efforts on the areas with the largest payoffs, you’re also likely to encounter groups with the heaviest clout. If we lived in a non-corrupt society, then we could expect government to act in the nation’s best interests and expect that reforms would be implemented. We don’t live in such a society. This means that interest groups need to be defenestrated. This means matters get really ugly. People going to jail, NGOs being shut-down, foundations and charities being put under different laws, universities being radically reformed in that they’re the incubators of many of the ills we face and they’re also the safe zone which keeps intellectual viruses alive, and safe, while decontamination is proceeding in the rest of society. Essentially the established order of life as we know it must get rewritten.

      On the other side we have to fight against the interests of Capital. Think about how that battle goes against the philosophies of most of us here. What would Hayak and Friedman say?

      But even with all of this trauma, it’s still impossible to fix society’s ills because the foundation of society has crumbled – the people are fractured via multiculturalism, so no matter what we do with government operations, with scale of government, with governing philosophy, we still have unresolvable problems with demographics.

      Here’s the problem, we can’t have a society based on liberty because this will produce unequal outcomes and some groups will be getting the short end of the stick in such a liberty-oriented society. These groups want equal outcomes and they’ll work to capture government and use its power to produce equal outcomes, thus reducing liberty. Until we produce a more homogeneous society we can’t build stable structures for our present foundation is unstable. This is, essentially, what we have today, a powerful gov’t working to create equal outcomes. Almost the entire black middle class is an artificial creation of gov’t. As the Fisher v. UT case demonstrates, when UT needs to give affirmative action to the children of black judges and Hispanic physicians because their children can’t compete on merit against the children of white short order cooks and child care workers, that’s a strong signal that the parents were elevated to a station in life divorced from their intellectual abilities (I realize that intellect isn’t solely responsible for success in life, but AA is a good proxy to use for all sorts of gov’t interventions designed to produce more equal outcomes for minorities.)

      How are you going to dismantle an ethos of governance which is infused with the mission of creating equal outcomes? There is no democratic mandate for this because a.) most people don’t see what is really going on, and b.) those who benefit are going to resist on a massive scale. We have a society with two opposing factions – those who want equal opportunity and those who want equal outcome. There is no compromise possible anymore than there is compromise possible between a rapist and his targeted victim.

    15. Grurray Says:

      “I don’t see how that’s possible, considering Trump has spent the last few months calling Cruz a Bible wielding pathological liar.”

      See Mike K’s earlier comment on General Sherman.

      Trump has a history of compromising and partnering with previous bitter rivals. One example was the Upper West Side Riverside South development

      it was a scene few among the more than 100 civic, elected and appointed officials, and reporters in the Blue Room could have imagined months ago, involving a developer whose past dealings with the city have sometimes been so nasty that a former deputy mayor, Alair A. Townsend, once said she would not believe him “if his tongue were notarized.”

      But yesterday, Linda Davidoff, executive director of the Parks Council, one of the groups that led the fight against Mr. Trump’s original plan for the more than 70-acre site of the abandoned Penn Central rail yards, kissed him and said that when the new project was done, “Donald, I hope you’re going to say to yourself, ‘This is the best deal I ever made.’ ”

      Trump’s strategy has always been to initially propose outrageous terms and to bitterly contest his position in order to establish a more advantageous position later during the negotiations

      “Lets face it, Trump has tendency to be outrageous,” says Richard T. Anderson, former head of Regional Plan Association (RPA) and current president of the New York Building Congress. “He originally started with a 150-story building, too much floor space, high density, blocking of views, five million square feet of nonresidential space, including a major shopping center that would have brought a large volume of traffic area…The plan was so flawed as to be incapable of revision.

      Even as he was fighting and haranguing them, Trump was able to sort out and foresee who among them could help him with his goal

      “He was the first person to ever recognize that the balance of power in New York City had shifted,” explains Kahan who has worked Trump on the Grand Hyatt project. “In the past, it was enough for developers to get government on their side. Trump realized that civic communities on his side were more important than government, because if the community approved the project, then government would have no choice but to get on board.”

      Trump learned from that long, contested development that in order to succeed, he could use the government but must listen and compromise with the citizens.

      If Cruz, the voice of conservative voters, can help Trump achieve his stated goal, (what was it… ‘Make America great again’) Trump will work with him regardless of what has been said before.

    16. TangoMan Says:

      Jeez, I hope not. I saw the Hungarian Prime Minister’s speech over at GOV. It sounds like he means business:

      I’m watching that speech. Thanks for the link. Here’s something to consider. At the 7:05 mark Orban identifies the enemies. How many people are going to figure out that Anders Breivik identified the same enemies?

      Hungary has an easier task than most countries, they simply have to maintain what they have rather than trying to rebuild what was lost, but even maintaining what they have is going to be hard when their enemies are going to try to starve them out by waging economic war against them. In a democracy we can’t count on people having, as Orban asks them to have, steel in their spines. People will sell out the group in order to end their own suffering.

      Good luck to them.

    17. TangoMan Says:

      If Cruz, the voice of conservative voters, can help Trump achieve his stated goal, (what was it… ‘Make America great again’) Trump will work with him regardless of what has been said before.

      What though is in Cruz’s best interests? He leads a significant faction. Does he gain anything by joining Trump’s team and sullying his bona fides? Is he better situated to remain a Senator, maintaining faith with his followers, and pledging to storm the Citadel in 4 or 8 years?

      It takes two to tango, so even if Trump is willing, the question becomes will Cruz come to the dance?

    18. David Foster Says:

      Tango…”On the other side we have to fight against the interests of Capital. Think about how that battle goes against the philosophies of most of us here. What would Hayak and Friedman say?”

      I’d suggest that the interests of capital are not indivisible. If you’ve already invested a lot of money, then Fed policies that artificially increase asset prices are in your interest. If you *plan* to invest a stream of money over, say, the next 5 years, then those same Fed policies will do great harm to your future returns.

    19. TangoMan Says:

      I’d suggest that the interests of capital are not indivisible.

      I wasn’t thinking along those lines, so thanks for that insight. Here’s what I had in mind when I made that comment.

      http://i.imgur.com/5hFqbLM.png

      What are the consequences for Capital and the existing financial order if the US returns National Income back to the levels seen between the 1950 and 1970? This is undeniably a good thing for people who earn the majority of their income through employment/wages. There are consequences though.

    20. TangoMan Says:

      I see Drudge has a number of stories on the Trump protests unfolding today. Here’s one:

      For hours, the protesters – about two dozen in total – parked their cars in the middle of the road, unfurling banners reading “Dump Trump” and “Must Stop Trump,” and chanting “Trump is hate.” Traffic was backed up for miles, with drivers honking in fury.

      Putting aside Trump’s interests, these Trump protests are not good for the nation. Trump has identified a problem and wants to correct it, and many people agree with him. Others don’t agree with Trump’s solution or his assessment that there is a problem. One group is correct and the other group is incorrect.

      As these protests mount the people in the middle, the undecided, will take note and many will likely avoid Trump because he inspires so much protest, they’ll favor politicians who are less polarizing. This is a good strategy if there really is no problem and Trump, and his supporters, are wrong about the issues and the solutions.

      The problem is that if Trump’s view accurately reflect reality.

      TEA Party was neutralized and this begat Trump. If Trump is neutralized, what comes after Trump is going to be more extreme, because the problems are not going to get fixed by the people who take Trump’s place, they’ll only get worse.

      The Reich could have been avoided at many junctures during the rise of the Weimar Republic but all of the junctures were closed off until only one was left.

      On a whole other level, I don’t get these protesters. Shutting down access to a Presidential candidate would have been looked at as unAmerican by earlier generations but the hunger for people to engage in moral vanity displays now is so great that maybe this is the new definition of the American creed and it supercedes the old values of respect for the Democratic process.

    21. David Foster Says:

      A couple of thoughts on wages vs profits: first, see this Forbes issue on the effect of globalization on this calculation:

      http://www.forbes.com/sites/timworstall/2013/05/07/why-have-corporate-profits-been-rising-as-a-percentage-of-gdp-globalisation/#6421238d53f1

      Second, one would expect that with an aging population, a higher % of the GDP would be in the form of profits rather than wages: retired people have no wage income, and the income they do have to a large extent created by corporate profits, either directly (401-Ks, etc) or indirectly (pensions, including pension trusts for government employees)

    22. Mike K Says:

      “So long as the donor class is focused solely on economic returns for themselves and displays no Nobless Oblige to the ordinary folks, so long as they are internationalist/cosmopolitian in outlook rather than nationalist, Trump won’t resolve the problem.”

      No, but he can nibble around the edges. The Capital ship has acquired a lot of barnacles. The Administrative State is not an aid to prosperity. The Tax Farmers of Louis XIV were doing work for the state that it did not have the competence to do itself but they were hated and eventually they were overthrown. Lavoisier was the grandson of a tax farmer and he was Guillotined even though he was a valuable scientist.

      The federal bureaucracy is hated by a lot of people and should be susceptible to overthrow. They are not really that effective at conducting policy if the Obamacare web site and the VA are any indication. That is a big piece of the administrative state. Those people are the heart of the Democrat Party and will fight to the death (almost) to keep their pensions and perks. It is no coincidence that staffers of Congress have been excluded from Obamacare.

      The donor class may be more amenable to a piecemeal approach to revolution if they think they will be eaten last.

    23. TangoMan Says:

      I’ve turned off my ad-blocker and Forbes still won’t let me onto their site, so I can’t read that article. Will someone help me out by copying-pasting relevant portions.

      Second, one would expect that with an aging population, a higher % of the GDP would be in the form of profits rather than wages: retired people have no wage income, and the income they do have to a large extent created by corporate profits, either directly (401-Ks, etc) or indirectly (pensions, including pension trusts for government employees)

      I don’t dispute that we should be seeing this effect. There are conflicting interests, such as this:

      http://i.imgur.com/lUF29rK.jpg
      http://i.imgur.com/LbQ36md.png

      As you point out, an aging population would result in an economy showing more activity focusing on capital but this doesn’t explain why productivity gains are not being shared with labor. That’s a function of labor surplus decreasing the bargaining power of labor with respect to capital

      The second chart points to the redistribution effects of young people, who are asset-poor, subsidizing old people, who are asset-rich, via their labor income, thus reducing their consumption and savings patterns.

      Unless I’m missing something about how that income-redistribution is measured in the Labor-Capital split of GDP it looks like labor is being overstated.

      Lastly, going on intuition alone, I’m skeptical that an increase in the median age of the US from 29.5 in 1960 to 27.7 in 2014 is going to significantly explain that massive shift of GDP over to Capital. Maybe the Forbes link talks about this, but I can’t read that article.

      What I do see is gov’t effort expended on allowing capital greater mobility so it’s no longer even partially captive to the US market. This, combined with flooding the labor markets, has drastically increased the ability of capital to increase its returns.

    24. TangoMan Says:

      median age of US in 2014 is 37.7, not 27.7

    25. Bill Brandt Says:

      Interesting quote. I don’t think the Trump supporters are identical to the Tea Party supporters, but it is 2 big concentric circles with a lot of overlap.

      Peggy Noonan hit the nail on the head when she said that the donor class of the Republicans have put only their interests and ignored the interests of the middle class.

      I think that is a large reason why Romney lost in 2012.

      Reagan,m whom every aspiring Republican likes to compare himself to, campaigned in places Republicans were supposed to go, like Blue Collar Michigan.

      Trump is picking up a lot of these people that later candidates have ignored.

    26. Mike K Says:

      “Trump is picking up a lot of these people that later candidates have ignored.”

      The argument that Trump is not a conservative is irrelevant, He is a populist and probably a bit authoritarian.

      He has also tapped a rich vein of anger at the ruling class and, like FDR a bit, he is a traitor to that class of billionaires he belongs to.

      The Koch brothers are also interested in the public good but they are libertarians and demonized by the left which can’t lay glove on Trump.

      I think it might take another primary for Cruz to get the message that it is time to stop climbing the hill. This is not the hill to die on today.

      “Does he gain anything by joining Trump’s team and sullying his bona fides?”

      I think Cruz gains a lot. I don’t think he is electable this year. Trump probably is. If Cruz partners with Trump and they dismantle a significant part of the administrative state and get the economy going again, he will have huge credibility. Especially if he is the guy who figures out how to do it.

    27. Bill Brandt Says:

      Wish we had an edit function here…

      Reagan campaigned obviously where Republicans were not supposed to go – such as blue collar Michigan.

    28. TangoMan Says:

      Reagan campaigned obviously where Republicans were not supposed to go – such as blue collar Michigan.

      Reagan also talked like a crazy man. Clearly this disqualified him from holding office.

      http://izquotes.com/quotes-pictures/quote-if-it-s-to-be-a-bloodbath-let-it-be-now-appeasement-is-not-the-answer-ronald-reagan-261472.jpg

    29. Bill Brandt Says:

      Reagan also talked like a crazy man. Clearly this disqualified him from holding office.

      Ended the Cold War, turned a 20% inflation economy around – let me know whoever you think is great and I’ll look for the opposite…

    30. TimL Says:

      Trump is another loser:

      http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/donald-trump-has-won-37-percent.-hard-to-get-to-270/article/2586304

      You’d think those who supported Romney last time would have a little more humility. Trump has not outsmarted the press. He’s a left winger running against Republicans. As soon as the general starts, he would be savaged by the Media to an unprecedented degree. By the way, this defeat will not be on the GOPe.

    31. Mike K Says:

      “He’s a left winger running against Republicans.”

      It’s just amazing that we have all these mind readers appearing these days.

    32. ErisGuy Says:

      Traffic was backed up for miles, with drivers honking in fury.

      Life hands writers metaphors: real activists take action; fake activists shout. In the 1920s, even the Social Democrats had street mobs to battle the Nazis and Communists in Berlin. In the USA, opposition to the Left is all talk.