Home / General / Majority Votes By Elected Legislators: Undemocratic. Mob Violence: Democratic.

Majority Votes By Elected Legislators: Undemocratic. Mob Violence: Democratic.

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Over at Seriously, We Shelled Out $30 Million For This? Media, BadTasteInCocktailsPundit suggests that a little terrorism may not be such a bad thing, if the right targets are intimidated:

The important part is this: If this abominable, unconstitutional [sic], usurperous [sic], injurious, unsustainable [sic] and ruinous new health care law has a mere ten legislatures[sic] afraid for their safety, then this country might already be too far gone to save itself.

I think further commentary here is superfluous. However, for the punchline allow me to point you to more of Green’s Deeply Serious historical analysis. Here, we get some of the most painful libertarian historical fantsay this side of Charles Murray:

Quite the opposite. In fact, if you look back through American history, about the only time government ever did any good is when it stopped doing something. Usually, something heinous and awful and bad. I’ve even prepared a few examples.

[…]

After the Civil War, the government stopped telling some people that they were the property of other people. The government didn’t free the slaves — it finally recognized that all men are already free.

[…]

With the Civil Rights movement, the state governments finally lost the ability to tell some people that they couldn’t go places other people could already go.

[…]

I could go on, but you get the point. Every advance in liberty is met with — isn’t possible without — a proportionate retreat in government power.

Yes, the Civil War, Ike sending the Screaming Eagles into Little Rock, the Civil Rights and Voting Rights Acts — if they teach us anything, it’s 1)that government intervention is never necessary to secure civil rights and liberties, and 2)the glories of “federalism.”

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  • Linnaeus

    By extension of this reasoning, the ideal government is one that does nothing at all.

    Of course, there’s the classic hedge – “about the only time government did anything good” – that folks like this guy will use to avoid that conclusion.

  • Jay B.

    The government didn’t free the slaves — it finally recognized that all men are already free.

    That must have been a head slapping moment for U.S. Grant.

    • Linnaeus

      Especially when he pondered the thousands of Union soldiers who died under his command.

      • Rick Massimo

        All, apparently, in the service of a government that created slavery where there originally wasn’t any.

    • Jon H

      ” it finally recognized that all men are already free.”

      Seems to me the problem was the citizens who thought certain they could own other people.

      Apparently he thinks people were walking into their own farmyard in the morning, and being all “Who the hell are you?” “I’m Jim. I’d like to apply for the open slave position.” “No, really, I don’t need a slave.” “Sure you do, mister? I won’t cost anything to keep around. No pay, I’ll sleep on that pile of rags in the barn, I’ll do your work! Please? I even brought you a whip!”

  • R. Porrofatto

    In other words, government programs like Social Security, Medicare, and Unemployment Insurance have callously denied hundreds of millions of folks their right to hunger, cold, untreated illness, and an early death. Give me liberty AND give me death! It’s a twofer.

    Someone normal in the “the only time government ever did any good is when it stopped doing something” comment thread points out anti-trust, FDA and other consumer protections.
    Green: I have yet to see a solid case made for anti-trust. Ayn Rand & Alan Greenspan (I think that was a Greenspan essay; memory might be failing tho) pretty much devastated it, writing in Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal.
    And your other example demonstrated an advance in safety not liberty

    Ergo, monopoly good, safety not good. And Rand.

  • DrDick

    Republicans are the only “true Americans” so votes by those seditious alien Demoncrats don’t count.

  • MikeJ

    With the Civil Rights movement, the state governments finally lost the ability to tell some people that they couldn’t go places other people could already go.

    Wasn’t the conservative argument at the time that this was gubmint meddling in private property rights? By allowing black people to sit at the lunch counter we had to force lunch counter owners to serve black people.

  • Flavor Flavius Julianus

    memory might be failing tho

    Must be the blackouts.

  • Rick Massimo

    “In fact, if you look back through American history” = “You can stop reading this now, because I don’t know the first fucking thing about American history.”

  • larryb33

    I was wondering today whether this is a special moment of stupidity in our country or am I just seeing it through my own little perspective. I called my father who is 75. My worst fears were confirmed. He said he watches these people on the news and his blood pressure goes up. He can’t watch the news anymore and he is really wondering what is happening to our country.
    Here is another “creative” reading of history– a letter to the editor in our local paper–
    the writer claimed economic growth was high and unemployment was low in the twenties because government spending was not “out of control”. In the thirties? Well, unemployment went through the roof. Government spending was ramped up. So, the take away point? Govt spending during the thirties stifled growth and employment. I am not making this up. And, no, it was not satire.

    • DrDick

      I fear this is far from a unique peak of stupid. It remains a recurrent them in US social history.

      • larryb33

        Yeah, that is true.

  • larryb33

    I suppose it has not been one long smooth march of progress, but it seems more and more difficult to imagine progress occurring when wealth and power are more and more concentrated among the corporate elite and they can sprout astro turf organizations to their heart’s content.
    “sprout” astro turf– that is not too Tom Friedman is it

  • lou

    Perhaps we should get rid of elections and just rely on polls and pollsters to judge how elected officials should make decisions.

    That seems to be what the Republicans are arguing.

  • wengler

    We’re still not even close to peak wingnut.

  • Anonymous

    Wow! His brain must look like a tornado after all the twists and turns it took to come up with that “logic.”

  • mpowell

    Wow. There have been some close brushes recently, but it is now official: parody is dead.

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