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Old Jan 2nd 2014, 08:52 PM
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Default Re: Adam Smith: The Theory of Moral Sentiments

Originally Posted by Tom Palven View Post
Michael, when it comes to individual liberty I'm in favor of it, and when it come to economic freedom, I'm also in favor of it. That should define my politics as classical liberal, the way many define Adam Smith's politics. Populists, on the other hand, have historically favored government promotion of Christian morality and government involvement in business, particularly with regard to laws promoting unions and labor laws and easy money, ie.- the "You will not nail workers to a Cross of Gold" speech. Throw in being pro-intervention, pro-colonialism, and pro-military-industrial establishment on top of populism and then, I think, you are talking fascism.
Yes, I agree with all this.

Originally Posted by Tom Palven View Post
When one describes Republicans one starts talking about being socially conservative while paying lip service to be pro free enterprise, but actually being pro-military-industrial-congressional establishment and socialism for the rich. You probably know this, but some of our European friends might not understand US politics, and may want to, for what it's worth.

When we talk about labels, I don't know which thing is the very last thing I'd want to be labeled among the labels "Republican," "neo-conservative," or "fascist." I know that I don't like my name to be mentioned in the same sentence with Glenn Beck's.
But that's what happens as soon as you get on the 'specie-currency' bandwagon. The only other people in that boat are the Glenn Beck types.

Originally Posted by Tom Palven View Post
We all know for a fact that it was liberals who have been in the forefront of racial and sexual equality under the law, most recently supporting gays in the military. And we know that it was conservatives who supported the apartheid laws of "separate but equal" public schools, water fountains, and so on, and I really don't know whether to laugh, throw up, or go blind every time I hear Rush Limbaugh state that he can't understand why blacks don't vote for conservative Republicans since the Republican Party was the party of Lincoln.
Well, I don't think we all "know that for a fact" stuff. Rush Limbaugh is technically correct when he says that the Republican party was the party of Lincoln. Rush would also be technically correct if he said the Democratic party was the party of the white southern racists. Both of these statements are true in a historical sense. In the last thirty years, the two US political parties reversed positions - the southern white racists have bailed out of the Democratic party as it became the party of the civil rights movement. Those good ole southern boys moved over to the Republican party to make it what it is today. This party position switch is apparently very confusing to lots of voters who have zero historical awareness. The Republicans play on this to their own advantage.

Originally Posted by Tom Palven View Post
But, it's my opinion that big government in general benefits big special interests and big banksters most at the expense of the little guy, and that the free, unfettered market benefits the "little people" most. I think that this is a validly arguable point, and I'm willing to hear opposing arguments.
Well yes, I certainly agree that big government in general benefits big corporations, big special interests and big banksters at the expense of the little guy. You will get no argument from me on this point.

However, I will strongly disagree that the "free unfetterred market" benefits the little guy at all. Heck, we practically invented 'big government' in an attempt to protect the "little guy" from being so constantly abused by the "free unfettered market".

Big corporations, big special interests and big banks just switched tactics. They previously got all they wanted with a free unfettered market - but when we invented big government to protect the little guy, the big boys just concentrated on gaining control of big government in order to get it to work for them. They succeeded. Their goal is always to abuse the 'little guy' because that's how they get rich. In the old days, "free unfettered markets" was the easiest way to abuse the "little guy". Now they use big government to do it. Same game.

Originally Posted by Tom Palven View Post
What clouds the issue are statements that suggest that if a person thinks that buyers should beware before making their buying choices or which restaurants to patronize, instead of relying on Big Brother, and believe that free markets can deliver the goods, rising tides will raise all boats, and all that, that that person is automatically a mean-spirited racist, misogynist, homophobic, sexist, rich elitist, because imho that doesn't in any way describe me.
But that's exactly the political turf you are standing on if you espouse those views. You are in alliance with the racists, misogynists, homophobes and elitists. They all desperately hate big government because big government won't let them express their racism, misogyny, homophobia and elitism the way they want it.

Bottom line is that there is no such thing as a "free unfettered market". It just doesn't exist. Markets are always rigged. The only issue is about 'rigged in favor of whom?'.

As such, the political push for "free unfettered markets" and/or anti-big government is all about empowering big business, big special interests, big banks and also the racists, misogynists, homophobes and elitists. They all want to tear down big government because big government offers some protections to the little guy and all these groups just don't like that at all.
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