A Few Political Questions Answered

Q. What would Donald Trump have to do to change your mind about him?

A. He would have to replace his rational faculty with that of Thomas Jefferson, his temperament with that of Ronald Reagan, and his principles with those of George Washington. Unfortunately, his life, past and present, shows him to be on the very opposite end of the spectrum on all three points, and I see no reason to expect a miracle, let alone any grounds for believing that his supporters would desire one, nor that America deserves one.

Q. Is democracy more endangered by the left or the right?

A. Democracy is endangered by democracy, which is and always has been little more than unfettered majority rule, and the left and right, as we now use those terms, are largely the product of democracy’s peculiar internal danger, as well as constituting the preface to the ultimate realization of said danger. Or rather than “preface,” perhaps we may say that democracy itself is a danger, and today’s left/right optics, which are merely the residual vapor trails of democracy in rapid retreat, constitute the antechamber to the special hell or freefall that awaits any unfettered majority and its victims, in the end: fetters.

Q. Do “capitalism” and liberty go hand in hand?

A. Free minds will tend to favor free markets, as a matter of principle. Unfortunately, free markets do not tend to favor free minds. Quite the contrary, in fact. The reason is all too obvious, sadly: great wealth-getting begets greed; greed is a vice (a deadly sin, as the Catholic Church called it, back when there was a Catholic Church); and vicious men do not, as a rule, prioritize other men’s freedom. Lest anyone throw Milton Friedman’s “greed is good” argument at me here, rest assured that I have dealt with that claim at length in the past, and furthermore that I am of the opinion that poppycock does not become any more persuasive just because a famous man spews it — least of all a famous economist.

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