In the contemporary, Chinese view of socialism, the government acts as both a regulator to and a competitor in major industries. For instance, Xinhua is a large news bureau and a regulator of news bureau. The old Ministry of Communications both ran a large national cell phone system, and regulated portable telephony. In this way, the government can subject the economy to national control while avoiding some of the inefficiencies (such as labor protection) that come from turning workers into public servants. Obama is a socialist in the Chinese sense.
But what if the final state is not democratic capitalism? What if convergence is right after all? What if Soviet communism fell apart and turned into a mafia state run by an alliance of government and favored businesses, which control the country by corruption and intimidation, a nomenklatura that strips out all the value in the country on behalf of a well-connected elite, immiserating everyone else. This amoral, vicious, greed-driven, undemocratic dystopia is what we are now converging toward. It is an Orwellian future, with an Inner Party of senior politicians and business executives, an Outer Party of government employees and business managers, and a vast, despoiled, proletariat with no opportunities, or assets or future. It sounds like the world Mr. Obama is brazenly pushing us toward. It also sounds like a future that no Republican has so far dared to point to, to name, to denounce and to oppose â€” because they would prefer to be in on the game than take the risks inherent in opposing it.
As I said in the comments, Everything except the remarks about the “despoiled proletariat” also describes the People’s Republic of China.
The greatest philosophical difference between People’s Republic President Hu Jintao and United States President Barack Obama appears to be that Hu believes thatÂ the generationÂ of wealthÂ is a fundemental social virtual. President Obama, on the other hand, believs that the destribution of wealth is such a virtue.
Just as both al Qaeda and the TSA use sexual assault as a tool of politics, both al Qaeda and TSA kill air travelers.
The difference is that the TSA kills more travelers than al Qaeda.
More information on this state terrorism from Nate Silver:
More stringent security procedures, in essence, function as a tax upon air travel, and produce a corresponding deadweight loss. Teleconferences are often a poor substitute for person-to-person interaction, and when people are reluctant to travel, some business deals donâ€™t get done that otherwise would have. Recreational travelers, meanwhile, may skip out on vacations that otherwise would have brought them pleasure and stress-relief (while improving revenues for tourism-dependent economies). The tenuous profits of the airline industry are also affected, of course. Revenue losses from the new bag-checking procedures may have measured in the billions, according to the Cornell study.
Other passengers may substitute car travel for air travel. But this too has its consequences, since car travel is much more dangerous than air travel over all. According to the Cornell study, roughly 130 inconvenienced travelers died every three months as a result of additional traffic fatalities brought on by substituting ground transit for air transit. Thatâ€™s the equivalent of four fully-loaded Boeing 737s crashing each year.
In other words, Barack Obama is a greater threat to the safety of air travelers than Osama bin Laden.
Today I had the pleasure of talking to a senior-level, PhD researcher at a very large corporation that you have heard of, interacted with, and given money to.
I am under the clear impression that this man is a liberal Democrat, though by nature he is generally unpolitical. He has good (and bad) words to be said about congresspeople and officials from both parties. His votes are normally driven by local matters of interest to him because of how they impact his (entirely gentile) recreational habits.
He mentioned to me how he fears for his young daughter’s safety because of the new TSA guidelines.
He worries how the software in the machine prevents levels of radiation levels high enough to harm his daughter’s reproductive system.
He worries how his daughter’s normal development will be effected by being regularly fondled by strangers.
I have not heard any reports of systematic sexual assault on civilians by al Qaeda under Osama bin Laden.
I wish I had not heard any reports of systematic sexual assaults by U.S. government under Barack Obama.
But I cannot.
As far as the normal development of young girls go, they appear to be safer in areas controlled by bin Laden’s al Qaeda than by the Obama’s United States.
This is typical of the disconnected, centralized, red-tape approach that Obama has taken to the clean-up in the Gulf (from ABC News)
Sixteen barges sat stationary today, although they were sucking up thousands of gallons of BP’s oil as recently as Tuesday. Workers in hazmat suits and gas masks pumped the oil out of the Louisiana waters and into steel tanks. It was a homegrown idea that seemed to be effective at collecting the thick gunk.
“These barges work. You’ve seen them work. You’ve seen them suck oil out of the water,” said Jindal.
“The Coast Guard came and shut them down,” Jindal said. “You got men on the barges in the oil, and they have been told by the Coast Guard, ‘Cease and desist. Stop sucking up that oil.’”
BP America President and Chairman Lamar McKay: â€œBP supports an economy-wide price for carbon based on fair and equitable application across all sectors and believes that market based solutions, like a cap and trade or linked-fee, are the best solutions to manage GHG emissions.â€ (Committee on Energy and Commerce, Subcommittee on Energy and Environment, U.S. House Of Representatives, Hearing, 6/15/10)
Shell President Marvin E. Odum: â€œThat is why Shell supports legislating a solution to energy and climate issues as a means to create a secure U.S. energy future, reduce dependence on foreign oil and decrease greenhouse gas emissions. This requires setting a price for carbon, and we recommend cap and trade.â€ (Committee on Energy and Commerce, Subcommittee on Energy and Environment, U.S. House Of Representatives, Hearing, 6/15/10)
ConocoPhillips CEO James J. Mulva: â€œAnother key element of a comprehensive energy policy should be federal action to address global climate change. As you are aware, ConocoPhillips supports passage of a comprehensive federal law establishing a clear and transparent price for carbon.â€ (Committee on Energy and Commerce, Subcommittee on Energy and Environment, U.S. House Of Representatives, Hearing, 6/15/10)
For much of the last two months, the focus of the response to the Deepwater Horizon explosion has been a mile underwater, 50 miles from shore, where successive efforts involving containment domes, â€œtop killsâ€ and â€œjunk shotsâ€ have failed, and a â€œspillcamâ€ shows tens of thousands of barrels of oil hemorrhaging into the gulf each day.
Closer to shore, the efforts to keep the oil away from land have not fared much better, despite a response effort involving thousands of boats, tens of thousands of workers and millions of feet of containment boom.
Even worse, the “moratorium” on drilling announced by the president does little to prevent future disasters. The ban halts exploratory drilling at only 33 deepwater operations, shutting down less than one percent of the total wells in the Gulf. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, the Cabinet-level official appointed by Obama to rein in the oil industry, boasts that “the moratorium is not a moratorium that will affect production” â€“ which continues at 5,106 wells in the Gulf, including 591 in deep water.