July 29, 2015

"So it’s okay to have socialism, but it can’t be international socialism, it has to be socialism in one nation."

"A sort of national socialism, I guess."

180 comments:

harrogate said...

It's a really funny joke if you don't think about it at all.

Nonapod said...

Clearly Bernie Sanders is a real deep thinker. I'm sure he has had thoughts like: We should all increase the minimum wage to $1,000,000 an hour, that way everyone would be rich!

Brando said...

It's not an accident that so many Nazis and Fascists had socialist roots--once you believe in the glory of the collective over that of the individual, it's not that hard to leap from believing that certain class elements are evil and must be sapped of their power to believing that certain racial elements are evil and must be sapped of their power. To pretend that two types of totalitarianism are on opposite sides of the political spectrum is misdirection.

Bob R said...

Kevin D. Williamson puts more flesh on the bones of that statement.

Skeptical Voter said...

How long did Bernie spend in a commune with "good weed, mushrooms and acid"?

You know that sort of stuff leads to brain damage. And when Bernie says that
"open borders are a Koch brothers agenda" it's clear that that Bernie has no clutch mechanism to engage the brain before opening his mouth.

In his own way, he's as laughable a clown as Donald Trump. Just comes at it from a slightly different direction. I say slightly different because The Donald has been a major contributor to liberal Democrats for all of his life.

Bruce Hayden said...

Scott beat me to it - national socialism is what fascism and naziism are all about.

Big Mike said...

@Nonapod, one can judge the reasoning ability of Bernie Sanders by his comments about deodorants:

“You don’t necessarily need a choice of 23 underarm spray deodorants or of 18 different pairs of sneakers when children are hungry in this country.”

Starting with the fact that there are way more than 23 different deodorants and way more than 18 different kinds of sneakers for sale (Nike alone offers more than 300), any money saved by having the government restrict sales of deodorants and athletic shoes would be sucked up and then some by the establishment of an immense bureaucracy to determine exactly what is the optimal number of deodorants to have on the market, who is allowed to sell them, and which, precisely, should be offered for sale. Far from saving money that could be used to feed hungry children, it would cost much, much more.

But don't try explaining that to Bernie Sanders (or any hardcore Democrat, for that matter). He doesn't want to hear it, and besides, since when are Democrat policies dependent on reality?

rehajm said...

I think we have to raise wages in this country, I think we have to do everything we can to create millions of jobs. You know what youth unemployment is in the United States of America today? If you’re a white high school graduate, it’s 33 percent, Hispanic 36 percent, African American 51 percent.

He says this without a hint of the irony?

Bob Boyd said...

Bernie Sanders, racist wing nut?

Chris403 said...

Nazi is such a crass term. Bernie prefers to be called a National Socialist.

Brando said...

"It's a really funny joke if you don't think about it at all."

It's not fair to compare a "social democrat" like Sanders with the Nazis, but the flippant way American leftists proudly wear the "socialist" label without accepting the socialist roots of the Nazi party earns them a bit of snark. A Republican calling himself a modern anarchist certainly would have to endure similar snark.

TreeJoe said...

Reading Bernie's Vox interview was the first time I truly dove deeply into his statements, as too frequently he's simply briefly quoted.

It is abundantly clear he is simply running his mouth at a mile a minute with whatever grand vision he has but with very little deep consideration into execution.

My favorite line though was how he looks at democrat socialist countries like "Norway, Sweden, Denmark....and other countries" for inspiration in terms of provision for citizens.

Now don't get me wrong: those Norwegian countries have been really successful. Of course, they rely upon much higher taxation of the middle class to do so. And they are extremely nationalist - Danish companies prevent non-Danes from becoming leaders. Oh, and they avoided wars by being neutral and avoiding any sort of really significant military build-up.

Why is Bernie's positions not being called out for what they are: Racist, xenophobic, and aimed at increasing taxes on the middle class.

I'm not even twisting words here - that's exactly what he's calling for: a prevention of immigration, a strong nationalism to people already here and putting them above others, and a much broader and more regressive tax system in line with Scandinavia.

Brando said...

“You don’t necessarily need a choice of 23 underarm spray deodorants or of 18 different pairs of sneakers when children are hungry in this country.”

A statement like this collapses under its own idiocy. It ignores the virtues of the free market, and the fact that the deodorant and sneaker producers, in meeting consumer demand, are creating wealth, providing jobs and meeting needs of a free economy. If there were say one type of sneaker, we'd see something like the wonderful Soviet brands of sneaker, loved by no one, and last I checked a country like Russia which historically exported grain was driven into starvation by the 1970s under its wonderful central planning, and forced to import grain from the U.S.

A self-aware Sanders might consider this and acknowledge that even while he wishes for a bigger or better safety net for America's most vulnerable, the virtues of the free market provide the best way to not only support such a safety net, but ensure that more people are not in need of it.

TreeJoe said...

P.s. Also, since Bernie is focused on Scandinavia....why isn't he asked about the far more numerous failed democrat socialist states who espoused the same ideals.

Fernandinande said...

Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei is misunderstood; it's "Socialite", not "Socialist".

John said...

Brando said:

It's not an accident that so many Nazis and Fascists had socialist roots--

I think you have it wrong. Headed down the right track but wrong.

All true National Socialists (A/K/A NAZIs) and Fascists have socialist roots because National Socialism and Fascism (not the capital F) are both socialist ideologies from the ground up. They were both designed by socialists as forms of socialism.

Read Mein Kampf or later works by German National Socialist theorists. Read The Doctrine of Fascism by Mussolini. Both are available free on the web.

Then tell me how these are not really socialist ideologies.

German National Socialism and Italian Fascism are both socialist to their core.

John Henry

Rick said...

harrogate said...
It's a really funny joke if you don't think about it at all.


What's funny is the speed at which poseurs respond to a little trolling from the right. Apparently we're supposed to believe those who have supported similar insults for generations have somehow become the arbiters of decorum.

Ignorance is Bliss said...


Socialism is a really great economic policy if you don't think about it at all.

Scott said...
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Scott said...
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Tom said...

Heh. Indeed.

This sort of joke is what made John Stewart and the Daily Show so popular... it's just aimed in a slightly different and refreshing direction.

damikesc said...

It's a really funny joke if you don't think about it at all.

It's reality. The only appreciable difference between Stalin's economic policy and Hitler's was who would be running the country. Stalin felt it should be the USSR. Hitler felt it should be Germany.

Communists support INTERNATIONAL Socialism. Hitler supported NATIONAL Socialism. Their policies beyond that are nearly indistinguishable. Use government controlled "unions" to force workers to do jobs they wouldn't do. Use terror and murder to stifle opposition. Only allow people closely connected to the Party --- or people who pay proper bribes --- to succeed. Steal property from the undesired (kulaks or Jews, your choice) and give them to the preferred at really low cost.

German National Socialism and Italian Fascism are both socialist to their core.

Literally, the ONLY reason why Mussolini wasn't "Socialist" was that he supported Italy entering World War I and Italy was the one country where the Socialist Party opposed it (Germany's Socialist Party supported it, for example).

damikesc said...

And applying the label "Nazi" to an Ashkenazi Jew is a little ugly. I mean, I am no fan of the clueless senator from Vermont by any means, but this kind of rhetoric is not something one worthy of respect should be associated with.

If one's policies are evil, referring to them as such is hardly beyond the pale.

Being nice and friendly is for losers and saps.

Punch the fuckers between the eyes. Good and hard.

John said...

Blogger Ignorance is Bliss said...

Socialism is a really great economic policy if you don't think about it at all.

Socialism, particularly Marxist socialism, is flawed from the git-go. On about page 5 of Capital Marx explains how exchanging a quantity of wheat for a quantity of iron means that those quantities are worth the same.

From this flawed foundation he derives the labor theory of value and objective value and keeps rolling downhill from there.

For the deep thinkers who don't see the fallacy: If a quantity of wheat exchanges for a quantity of iron, it does not mean they have the same value. It means that the quantity of wheat is worth more than the iron AND, simultaneously, the iron is worth more than the wheat.

There is no reason to exchange if both values are the same. Exchange only ever takes place when both sides see themselves as getting more than they give up.

That is the ONLY circumstance where exchange takes place.

I've never figured out whether Marx was stupid or dishonest. Probably a bit of both.

John Henry

Brando said...

"And applying the label "Nazi" to an Ashkenazi Jew is a little ugly."

His being Jewish has nothing to do with his socialism or his being compared to the Nazis, so why does he get a pass for his odious beliefs? If it's unfair to make the comparison because his beliefs are nowhere near as extreme as say Lenin or Hitler's, then fine--that'd be the case even if he were Lutheran or atheist. But being Jewish does not give you a free pass from appropriate ridicule.

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TreeJoe said...

Scott said, And applying the label "Nazi" to an Ashkenazi Jew is a little ugly. I mean, I am no fan of the clueless senator from Vermont by any means, but this kind of rhetoric is not something one worthy of respect should be associated with.

Scott: Bernie is espousing national socialism ideology consistent with the German National Socialist platform in it's early years, including those preached by Hitler and others who turned into the Nazi war machine.

There were many Jewish members who initially, or throughout the war, were supporters of Hitler.

Pointing out a modern day person's policies are consistent with National Socialism policies preached by the early Nazi party is not inconsiderate - it absolutely needs to be done. They are also in line with non-Nazi nation state policies, some of which have been successful and many of which have been disastrous.

Bernie Sanders has named himself a democrat socialist who is a strong supporter of nationalism. Those who have called themselves such have a long and storied history that he does not seem to want to familiarize himself with too closely besides saying he wants to create more Scandinavian looking countries.

Bobber Fleck said...

"Think globally, act locally"

It appears Bernie takes his bump stickers seriously.

At least Bernie cares enough about his fellow citizens of the US to think they should have jobs before illegal immigrants. He seems to believe he should serve the interests of the US before serving the interests of the world. That's actually refreshing.

Marty Keller said...

Bernie's deep thinking is on display for all to admire. On the one hand he lauds all the free stuff the utopians in Scandanavia get, but on the other hand, there's this:

"Yes, but it's not just America. This is the damn problem that we face. We are spending more money on the military than the next nine countries behind us. Where is the UK? Where is France? Germany is the economic powerhouse in Europe. They provide health care to all of their people, they provide free college education to their kids. You know what? Germany and France and the UK and Scandinavia and the rest of Europe, all of us have got to work together to prevent those types of genocide and atrocities, and we have to strengthen the United Nations in order to do that."

Hmmm, Bern. Do ya think that maybe the "socialism" you admire is actually systematic and long-standing American taxpayer transfers to those countries' budgets? Can you not add 2 and 2? (But what socialist is not disdainful of math?)

sydney said...

Does Bernie take money from Planned Parenthood?

sydney said...

Oh, why yes, he does.

John said...

Perhaps it is wrong to call Bernie Sanders a National Socialist, though it does seem that he preaches a national form of socialism (no caps)

Maybe we should call him a "National Progressive" (note the caps).

This was the party that Lafollette tried to form in the late 30's. It's emblem, according to the Wisconsin Historical Museum looked like a "circumcised swastika"

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/8a/National_Progressive_Party_banner%2C_Madison%2C_Wisconsin%2C_1938_-_Wisconsin_Historical_Museum_-_DSC03257.JPG


I found this this about a rally that LaFollette held:

The Stock Pavillion address elicited a remarkable reaction from Colin Ross, a German citizen who was a frequent visitor to the United states and a committed National Socialist. Ross replied through an open letter to La Follette published in Berlin in the Nazi periodical Wille and Macht. Recognizing that "an American politician who dared to identify himself with Fascist principles would commit political suicide," Ross nevertheless agreed with other commentators that Phil's address "was a purely Fascist (sic-JRH) or - let us say - a National Socialist speech. Hitler himself had, in fact, already enunciated its basic ideas and Ross chided the governor for failing to acknowledge the source.


War, a New Era, and Depression, 1914-1940 (Google eBook)
Front Cover
Paul W. Glad
Wisconsin Historical Society, Mar 5, 2013 - 662 pages

Found on page 548. Not sure if the link takes you straight there.

https://books.google.com.pr/books?id=s_ ... sm&f=false


John Henry

buwaya said...

"they provide free college education to their kids. "

The per student cost of university in Europe is a fraction of what we spend in the US.
And many fewer go to university in the first place, because access is restricted. Unless he is ignorant this is disingenuous.

US States could provide essentially free university (and usually did, in the past) because it was much cheaper then. Fewer students and cheaper schools. In California community college and State Colleges are effectively free as the tuition is trivial and nearly all covered by easily available financial aid. A year at a State school like SF State is under $8K all in, and even the highly regarded cal Poly is @12K.

Anonymous said...
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Static Ping said...

If you cannot tell someone that they are endorsing national socialism, especially if they do not realize they are endorsing national socialism, then you are more or less begging for a return to national socialism. Do not be an enabler. The life you save may be your own.

That said, the genocidal portions of national socialism/fascism are not necessarily part of national socialism. I'm fairly sure that Nazi Germany could have been tolerant of the various domestic populations they tried to exterminate. I do not remember Mussolini being interested in extermination other than anyone who tried to challenge him. If the Italian Jews love Italy, why not embrace their love?

Tolerance of France and Poland is another question. The nationalistic part more or less requires seeing other countries as enemies or at least competitors to be overcome. It is less of a question of whether war is good and more if war is practical. Perhaps this political system simply leads itself there inevitably, regardless of intentions. You conquered France, you have Germans who need places to live and work, there would be plenty of room in France for them if it wasn't for those damn French.... I suppose you could try to turn the French into Germans. That's not as bad. But you will run out of room eventually.

As to Sanders, I do not think he is embracing Nazism. However, I do think he really has not thought any of this through. Sometimes people start with good intentions and then years down the line have death squads because they refused to question their bad premises and the death squads seemed logical to achieving the goals that everyone will love (other than those that are dead).

tim in vermont said...

Anybody who talks about how many deodorants a country should produce in terms of setting govt policy is either a fascist or a socialist.

If he is for seizing the deodorant industry and having the govt make deodorant, he is a socialist.

If he is about setting deodorant production policy and requiring the deodorant industry to follow it though force of government, he is a fascist.

If he thinks the govt has no place in such decisions, he is a classical liberal. Of course if that were the case, he wouldn't be talking about it in terms of a run for president.

Smilin' Jack said...

“You don’t necessarily need a choice of 23 underarm spray deodorants or of 18 different pairs of sneakers when children are hungry in this country.”

I don't believe there really are 23. If there were, we wouldn't have this child obesity problem.

chuck said...

I'd say more like the original Swedish socialism before erasure of the unfashionable fascist inheritance.

Brando said...

When they came for the deodorant manufacturers, I didn't protest because I wasn't a deodorant manufacturer...

Ignorance is Bliss said...


At some point, you've made enough deodorant.

Anonymous said...

Every deodorant brand is superfluous except Bernie's favorite: Ban.

AReasonableMan said...

Didn't we establish the other day that we are all national socialists now? Instapundit votes for candidates who support policies that are unquestionably socialist (Social Security and Medicare) and who are running for national office, i.e. national socialists.

Ignorance is Bliss said...


AReasonableMan said...

Didn't we establish the other day that we are all national socialists now?

No, we did not.

Instapundit votes for candidates who support policies that are unquestionably socialist (Social Security and Medicare) and who are running for national office, i.e. national socialists

I don't know Instapundit's preferences regarding Social Security, but voting for a candidate does not imply that you support all of that candidate's positions, and one does not need to be a socialist to believe that we should continue certain programs until they can be replaced by better, free-market solutions, rather than ending them immediately.

And if you really believe that when a communist runs for national office they instantly become a national socialist then you are really fucking stupid.

Quaestor said...

"Socialism in one nation" is a paraphrase of Stalin's dictum, socialism in one country.

I'm no fan of Bernie Sanders, but this effort to discredit him by connecting him with the Nazis, is both stupid and unfair. Sanders is a doctrinaire Marxist, which should be more than sufficient to discredit him and the entire hardcore of the Democratic Party which has embraced him.

Hitler's National Socialism certainly had many elements in common with typical anti-capitalist movements. However economics hardly occupied the center stage of Nazi ideology, which boiled down to Führerprinzip, Aryan supremacy, and death to the Jews. Hitler's economic program was an uncoordinated mishmash of Fascist corporatism, the "Prussian socialism" of Oswald Spenger's Preußentum und Sozialismus, and pragmatic capitalism. Far from the popular notion of German efficiency, Hitler's economics created chaotic inefficiency much more often than not, for which we must be grateful. If Germany had been governed intelligently the war would have much longer and bloodier.

tim in vermont said...

Support for social security does not make one a socialist. Or if it does, the word has no meaning, which is probably ARM's goal.

Support for nationalization of industries like automobiles and health insurance makes one a socialist. Support for directing those industries to operate in the interest of the ruling party, viz GM and the Democrats, makes one a fascist.

ARM is just too brick stupid to understand that.

tim in vermont said...

Hitler lost the war because they made a miscalculation regarding the quantity of uranium required to make an atomic bomb. Full stop. They thought that they needed enough uranium so that each particle emitted from the initial reaction had to find a nucleus and continue the chain which meant that the bomb was too large and impractical. In fact, it only had to hit other nuclei on average to effect a chain reaction, which meant far less uranium was required. It is astonishing to think that they could have made this blunder when you say it out loud.

Had they recognized this blunder, they would easily have beaten us to the bomb and won the war. demanding any terms they liked, and begun their thousand year Reich.

buwaya said...

" If Germany had been governed intelligently the war would have much longer and bloodier."

That is true in all sorts of areas, but to isolate one -

Interestingly, Germany's national socialism wasn't up to maximizing production efficiency, until quite late in the war. Both Britain and France were outproducing Germany in all categories of armaments by May 1940, in some categories (such as aircraft) by a factor of 2-3x. The only German advantages, in a material sense, were that they had started significant rearmament earlier. They attacked France at precisely the right moment, before the material balance became overwhelming.

And we are talking about Germany, the industrial power of Europe since the 1890's, with more and better engineers and skilled labor than anyone.

France, Britain, the US and of course the USSR did a much better job of "war socialism" than Germany.

Brando said...

"Support for nationalization of industries like automobiles and health insurance makes one a socialist."

It's a question of degree--even most libertarians (or conservatives) have some "socialist" (or collectivist) tendencies--favoring a publicly run post office, or allowing the government to continue to operate turnpikes and airports, for example. The question is to what extent one favors nationalized industries, or social safety nets. You can support the free market while still thinking certain functions are better provided by the state, or that some services should be available to the poorer citizens, such as those too disabled to work.

Sanders clearly falls pretty far along the spectrum compared to most Americans, and judging from his "deodorant and sneakers" comment he betrays a stark failure to understand the virtues of the free market.

tim in vermont said...

War socialism and war collectivism are necessary evils without which no nation can long survive. The problem comes when imposing these kind of wartime constraints on people's freedoms in peacetime because you have some unsettled feeling that somebody somewhere might be having a good time in a way you don't approve.

That's why liberals are always talking about "War on this" and "War on that!" They want the kinds of control over people's lives that they will only willingly tolerate in wartime.

Brando said...

"Interestingly, Germany's national socialism wasn't up to maximizing production efficiency, until quite late in the war."

Part of that was that in the early stages the Nazis wanted to sell the war as all upside and no downside for the Germans--they avoided rationing and full mobilization until a few years into the war. Had they started much sooner, they would have been better prepared for a war of attrition but then there might have been more opposition at home.

Rusty said...

Anybody who buys into Bernie's shtick is brain dead. Watch somebody is going to show up here exclaiming, Denmark!
Buncha losers.

Allen Cogbill said...

As Kevin Williamson noted about a week ago: Bernie’s Strange Brew of Nationalism and Socialism.

Char Char Binks said...

He's not a Nazi or a Fascist, but he is an America-hating commie, so why does he want to be the American president?

mikee said...

Bernie Sanders is running for Vice President, to move the Democratic Party closer to his ideals of socialism. He will make an excellent VP for Hillary, who is going to win, because she has no problems doing the unspeakable, illegal, unethical things she will have to do, to win.

In Bernie we are dealing with a candidate who has a political philosophy so far extreme that it has never once been supported openly by a mainstream party.

In Hillary we are dealing with a completely unethical thug who should be a political pariah beyond the worst public hatred of Nixon or Carter.

God help the Republic, for these two will have no mercy toward it.

AReasonableMan said...

tim in vermont said...
Support for social security does not make one a socialist.


Like hell it doesn't. Social Security was the love child of the ur-socialist FDR. Maybe you argue that Instapundit is a cafeteria national socialist, but still a national socialist.

Sam L. said...

"National Socialism" reminds me of some now-obscure party in Europe--maybe Germany?

Terry said...

National socialists always needs people who can be placed outside the national identity to blame for failure. There is no "us" without "them". Maybe they could be found in a group that persists in honoring a long forgotten cause and flag that stands for rejection of the federal government . . .

tim in vermont said...

ARM, you have some serious problems with logic. You spout rhetoric not logic. Rhetoric is stuff that sounds like logic, but isn't. I am thinking that it is convincing to you because you may not have an adult capacity for critical thinking. You certainly have a limited ability to comprehend anything said to you with which you do not already agree.

If Bernie Sanders whole candidacy is about support for Social Security only, I am not sure what the fuss is about. Yet it seems like there is more to it than that.

tim in vermont said...

I still think my description of his campaign is right on: "Under a Sanders administration, a good paying job will be guaranteed, but not mandatory."

Quaestor said...

Hitler lost the war because they made a miscalculation regarding the quantity of uranium required to make an atomic bomb. Full stop.

Your analysis makes sense only in a totally counterfactual context. The actual reasons German didn't build a bomb are much more complex.

The truth is that Germany made only a tiny fraction of the effort needed to produce a fission weapon. Even if Werner Heisenberg had correctly estimated the critical mass of U235, the rest of the effort needed to acquire a weapon was completely unfunded. For example, the Manhattan Project ultimately pursued a dual-track program aimed at producing weapons based on U235 and Pu239. The reason was that the gaseous diffusion process conducted at Oak Ridge, TN could only produce enough fissile U235 for one weapon by the summer of 1945. To put that effort in scale when the Oak Ridge plants were rev'ed up to 100% capacity they used almost 25% of the generated electrical output of the US in 1944. Even if Germany had fully exploited the pitchblend deposits of Czechoslovakia, which they did not for lack of manpower, they did not have the excess generating capacity to separate sufficient U235 from the non-fissile isotopes to even make a dud bomb.

Even though Heisenberg did not appreciate the statistics of uranium fission, he did understand the tremendous effort needed to build a uranium weapon. This explains his interest in plutonium, which was first identified by Glenn Seaborg et al. in late 1940 and early 1941. Seaborg openly published his findings in Physical Review, which Heisenberg read and appreciated. Later Bretscher and Feather at Cambridge determined that U238 in a reactor could absorb slow neutrons and become the fissile Element 94, but that wasn't openly published, as it fell under the Official Secrets Act. Nevertheless Heisenberg came to the same theoretical conclusion. To supply a sufficient slow neutron flux a breeder reactor needs a moderator. The moderator Heisenberg choose was deuterium oxide, which explains his interest in the heavy water plant at Norsk Hydro. His interest was strictly experimental, however. Heisenberg wanted to build a breeder reactor to make enough Pu239 to study experimentally, not to build a weapon, which he didn't know how to build. As it turned out the deaths caused by the attack on Norsk Hydro and the subsequent sinking of the Lake Tinnsjø ferry were in vain. Even if every drop of Norwegian heavy water had reached Germany it would have made no difference. Heisenberg was a long, long way from a bomb. He didn't even have the science, let alone the engineering.

In 1943 Hitler's war production minister Fritz Todt circulated a memo to all research departments demanding an estimate of new weapons that could become usefully developed by the spring of 1945. Projects that could not provide weapons by that time were to be halted or severely curtailed. Heisenberg could only offer a radiological bomb in reply. Todd's successor Albert Speer cut back his funding even more. The sum total of all Germany's nuclear weapons research was a small prototype reactor located under a church in the village of Haigerloch, which never operated, and would likely have exploded if ever did.

Germany had only one realistic chance to win the war, and that was a fleet of 300 U-boats operational by the start of hostilities, which might have been sufficient to strangle British shipping, thus forcing a capitulation in the West. But that would have delayed Hitler's plans for years, which was intolerable, and would have reduced output dedicated to Heer and Luftwaffe weapons, which was also intolerable.

AReasonableMan said...

tim in vermont said...
ARM, you have some serious problems with logic. You spout rhetoric not logic. Rhetoric is stuff that sounds like logic, but isn't. I am thinking that it is convincing to you because you may not have an adult capacity for critical thinking. You certainly have a limited ability to comprehend anything said to you with which you do not already agree.


This is inadvertently hilarious. There is no argument, just ad hominem rhetoric, and you complain about the absence of logic. Made my day.

Quaestor said...

Social security was invented by that über-Sozialist, Prince Otto von Bismarck.

ARM you are out of your league here. In fact you're out of league in any group of average teenagers.

Gary Rosen said...

I'm an Ashkenazi Jew and have no problem with the "national socialist" insinuation. For starters, I'm not aware of any evidence that Sanders embraces his Jewish heritage. Even if he did, if the shoe fits etc. Leftists have been smearing conservatives for decades and continue to do so right on this thread (An Unreasonable Douchebag). They dish it out but they can't take it.

Brando said...

"Like hell it doesn't. Social Security was the love child of the ur-socialist FDR. Maybe you argue that Instapundit is a cafeteria national socialist, but still a national socialist."

The Social Security Act had bipartisan support at the time it was passed, and one of the reasons for that (as well as why so many Republicans favor keeping it today, if anything only wishing to reform it so the program remains solvent) is because it remains a popular social safety net for a segment of the population that was once very vulnerable (i.e., old people without enough savings). Is it "socialist"? Only by the definition that any social safety net is socialist, in which case almost everyone in the country is socialist, and therefore "socialist" has no meaning. It'd be like saying any leftist who still is in favor of some ownership of private property is a libertarian free-market capitalist.

If you want to call someone a "socialist" or "libertarian" you have to look at where they fall in the spectrum, in this country and at this time. Otherwise anyone can fit either of those labels.

Brando said...

"National socialists always needs people who can be placed outside the national identity to blame for failure."

Also like their communist brethren, they tend to see society as a zero-sum game. There is no wealth creation, only wealth extraction and redistribution.

Birches said...

Instapundit's still got it. That might have been the most hilarious thing I've read all week.

Brando said...

"Germany had only one realistic chance to win the war, and that was a fleet of 300 U-boats operational by the start of hostilities, which might have been sufficient to strangle British shipping, thus forcing a capitulation in the West. But that would have delayed Hitler's plans for years, which was intolerable, and would have reduced output dedicated to Heer and Luftwaffe weapons, which was also intolerable."

I suppose there were a number of things that might have made it possible for Germany to win the war--namely, stopping before attacking Russia, and publicly denouncing Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor rather than declaring war on the U.S. It's possible that a few years of consolidating its gains in Europe to build a stronger, more modern military and navy might have prevented any attack by the Soviets or Americans, even while tensions with both countries grew.

Of course, there's no proving either way--just a fun thing for history buffs to bat around.

Kyzernick said...

Quaestor is rocking it today. On the topic of German atomic weapons during Da Big One, you're absolutely correct. On the topic of ARM, ditto.

Simply supporting the maintenance of the Social Security Administration until such time as a better alternative is implemented is not socialist. Supporting VA benefits for veterans is not socialist. Yes, these programs - taken individually - can be seen as socialist. But in conjunction with supply-side, free market economics and the ability of the people to form their own contracts, create their own wealth, and develop their own enterprises, they are merely footnotes, put in place to care for the disabled, the elderly, and veterans. Those groups of people are either incapable of taking care of themselves, too old to be as productive as they once were (productive they might be, but surely no longer in their prime), or those who sacrificed time, livelihood, and blood to defend this nation. If those programs are the extent of American socialist policy, I'm fine with it.

And SS is gonna be reformed someday anyway. It's only a matter of time.

ARM, Tim is correct. Take it from one who hails from Benandjeristan - Rhetoric =/= Logic

Kyzernick said...

Germany had no chance of winning the war. They just didn't. Like the Confederacy, they were resource and manpower limited, and even conquering France left them overextended. The war could have been prolonged, and I suppose it's possible that if no major battles had been won or lost decisively for a few years, maybe the public would have reached the conclusion that accommodation was better than conflict. But I doubt it.

damikesc said...

I suppose there were a number of things that might have made it possible for Germany to win the war--namely, stopping before attacking Russia, and publicly denouncing Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor rather than declaring war on the U.S. It's possible that a few years of consolidating its gains in Europe to build a stronger, more modern military and navy might have prevented any attack by the Soviets or Americans, even while tensions with both countries grew.

Delaying the Russian invasion until March of 1942 (instead of June 1941) would've caused issues, as would've allowing a tactical retreat during the worst of the winter and regrouping. I know Stalin was going to eventually turn on him, but given how utterly flat-footed they were caught in '41, I doubt it would've been for at least a year or so.

Ditto using air power to attack radar installations and fuel depots for the RAF and not cities. That is not a terribly effective strategy in war until the very, very end.

Could Germany have WON? No, probably not. But it could've been way, way more brutal. Ditto the Civil War. There are numerous things the CS did wrong (of course, "having Stonewall Jackson die" was likely the biggest shot and I doubt it could be avoided) --- but even if they fought perfectly, there was slim chance they could win. A stalemate was their only real hope.

Brando said...

"Delaying the Russian invasion until March of 1942 (instead of June 1941) would've caused issues, as would've allowing a tactical retreat during the worst of the winter and regrouping. I know Stalin was going to eventually turn on him, but given how utterly flat-footed they were caught in '41, I doubt it would've been for at least a year or so."

Delaying may have caused issues, but the unanswerable question is whether a few years' breathing room would have benefitted the Germans more or the Russians. Arguably, the Germans would have been better off not invading Russia at all, but either launching a limited attack or planning for a defensive war (if the Soviets ever did invade unprovoked). The vast distances involved would have made a conquest of Russia dicey even if the Germans made no mistakes, as much of their equipment wore down and they didn't have the transportation infrastructure necessary to make up for this.

Most likely Germany couldn't have won (if by winning you mean destroying the USSR as well as the remaining Allies) but a more limited strategy of holding their gains and withstanding counterattacks might have worked long enough to get a negotiated peace.

AReasonableMan said...

Quaestor said...
Social security was invented by that über-Sozialist, Prince Otto von Bismarck.


First of all we are talking about the US, so this is irrelevant. Social security was a policy of FDR and the Democrats, there is no argument about this.

In your mind, is or is not Social Security a socialist policy? And, if you insist on irrelevancies, Bismark introduced it in Germany to nullify the appeal of socialists to the working class, so to argue that socialists weren't the primary force driving the introduction of this policy is something of a stretch. There wasn't any social security before the rise of unions and socialism.


Also, I don't need to resort to petty ad hominems to advance an argument - advantage me.







Peter said...

One difference between socialists and fascists historically has been that socialists always spun elaborate theories around everything, whereas what little theory fascists produced was often incoherent and self-contradictory. In that respect it's difficult to regard Sanders as a good socialist as he's obviously a very weak theoretician.

As for nationalist socialists vs internationalist ones, well, it's always been hard to find actually existing internationalist socialist states, as all countries are inherently nationalist in that they seek to advance their interests (at the expense of others, as necessary).

The rulers of the USSR sometimes talked the language of internationalism but they surely didn't live it.
The USSR was the successor state to the Russian Empire, and the logic of empire (an imperative to suppress and subjugate other nationalities internally (the non-Russian SSRs) and externally (the vassal states in Eastern Europe) always took precedence over internationalism.

AReasonableMan said...

Kyzernick said...
Simply supporting the maintenance of the Social Security Administration until such time as a better alternative is implemented is not socialist. Supporting VA benefits for veterans is not socialist. Yes, these programs - taken individually - can be seen as socialist.


Unquestionably seen as socialist.

Sebastian said...

Being a national socialist is one thing, being dumb another.

Didn't realize Bernie was that shallow. Perhaps the only way to be a socialist today--for any reasonably bright person, there's too much adverse information to block out.

He and Francis should get along. About the same intellectual caliber.

Big Mike said...

Unquestionably seen as socialist.

When I retired the Social Security Administration thoughtfully sent me a listing showing what I paid and which years I paid the maximum for every year going back to high school summer jobs as a lifeguard. It was quite eye-opening. I calculated that if I live to 103 I'd get back what I paid in.

So if they're not going to give me my social security benefits then I want that money back, with interest. Compounded.

Kyzernick said...

Ahh, ARM, you missed the important part. "Taken individually". I'd waste more time explaining this to you, but I feel you're willfully ignoring the notion that a few policies that can be cast in a socialist light, surrounded and vastly outnumbered by policies that encourage free-market development, individual liberty from state control, and individual rights of contract and association, mean that it's a socialist platform.

You're enforcing a stupid "One-Drop" rule in political discourse, where a single socialist policy surrounded by capitalist policies means SOCIALISM. You're wrong. You're making it into political homeopathy, where a tiny amount of drug (socialism) surrounded by vast amounts of water (capitalism) is somehow more drug than water. You jumped the shark hours ago, dude. Hours.

Original Mike said...

“You don’t necessarily need a choice of 23 underarm spray deodorants or of 18 different pairs of sneakers when children are hungry in this country.”

So Sanders believes the government should be in charge of the economic planning, production and distribution of goods? Isn't that the essence of socialism?

chuck said...

they made a miscalculation regarding the quantity of uranium required

IIRC, it wasn't that they couldn't calculate correctly, it was that they were unable to imagine producing a large quantity of almost pure U-235. At the time of the Nakasaki bomb the relevant German scientists were in British captivity, and when Heisenberg heard the news he almost immediately realized that the US had used highly purified U-235 and the day after was able to conduct a talk about the bomb in which he had had calculated the amount of uranium used and the general method. Heisenberg was a very bright guy, but he was no industrialist and didn't have the intellectual breadth and organizational abilities of some of his American and British counterparts. It is as if P.A.M. Dirac had been put in charge of the American program.

Static Ping said...

Germany could definitely have won the war, at least by some definition of "win" and "war." After the end of the Phony War, it had completely defeated France and nearly starved the UK. At that point the war is over and it is just a matter if Germany annexes some/all of France, Denmark, Norway, the Low Countries, and the Balkans (I assume they keep their portion of Poland regardless), what colonial possessions it gets out of the deal, and what Japan gets for its efforts. It's your standard war the Europeans had been fighting for centuries. The war with Russia waits for later. Whether they can win that one is partially dependent on whether Zhukov manages to stay alive and in command. If Japan attacks Pearl Harbor, the Germans can tell their allies to pound sand and stay out of the United States's wrath.

Now if we are discussing "Germany conquers all of Europe and defeats the United States in one fell swoop" like a game of Risk, that's another story.

Qwinn said...

Ever notice that lefties like ARM are always denouncing everyone on the Right as "extreme", and then demand utter and complete extremism (must oppose SS) or else we ARE lefties? So which is it, ARM? Are we all socialists now, as you insist, in which case the continuous cries of "far right nuts" from every single last Democrat is an outrageous slander, or are we not socialists at all despite our deciding not to die on the hill of SS repeal? Sorry, cant have both.

virgil xenophon said...

damikesc@11:18am


Il Duce was literally a card-carying member of Italy's socialist party and was an editor of Italy's largest and oldest Socialist newspaper La Stampa.

buwaya said...

Plenty of public policies for collective purposes, and public charities, existed before the notion of "socialism" existed. And this goes back to the ancient world.
The Romans had a dole, military pensions, public infrastructure (with free utilities! Well, water and street lighting anyway), some degree of public education even.
No socialized medicine, because there wasn't much one could call "medicine".

Static Ping said...

About the Nazi atomic bomb, I do remember reading in an article that the Germans were considering a small scale test which they thought was well below critical mass and therefore relatively harmless. If they had managed to do that test - they were never close - most likely it would have been a mushroom cloud. The Germans highly overestimated critical mass while the Americans originally highly underestimated.

PuertoRicoSpaceport.com said...

Brando said...

Also like their communist brethren, they tend to see society as a zero-sum game. There is no wealth creation, only wealth extraction and redistribution.

Quite right, Brando.

This too flows from Marx's fundamental error on page 4 of Capital that I mentioned earlier. If all value is objective, there can be no creation of wealth or increase in value.

John Henry

Anonymous said...

@Damisek - The CS had a very good chance of winning the war during Lee's northern campaign in 1864.

If they had done what Longstreet wanted - to take strong defensive ground between Meade and Washington, it would have been the Union forced by situation to take action and charge a superior position. If Lee breaks Meade at some engagement he has a shot at racing south to Washington.

It took Grant to defeat Lee in the Petersburg campaign, because unlike the other generals he would not give ground after a defeat. He was willing to sacrifice thousands of lives and win the war of attrition. There's little reason to believe that Meade would have done the same, and a Gettysburg/Fredricksburg type defeat of the Union Northwest of the capital would have given Lee the chance he needed.

walter said...

It's also the case that once various policies are firmly in place, for long enough..removal or even modifying (see privatizing a portion..though Canada does it), becomes far more disruptive..at least from a perception/political standpoint. It's what made the "pass it to see what's in it"/largely unwritten approach so dangerous...folks using phrases like Medicare for all without realizing the private/public balance its providers depend on. But yeah..how far do you extend the one drop mindset? Roads? Military?

PuertoRicoSpaceport.com said...

Supporting VA benefits for veterans is not socialist. Yes, these programs - taken individually - can be seen as socialist.

Why is VA socialist? If it is socialist, is your company's pension or medical plan socialist?

When we signed the contract to join the military we agreed to do certain things and the govt agreed to do certain things in return.

Those VA benefits are earned just as much as the paycheck, retirement bennies. cool uniforms and all the compensation the Navy agreed to give me in return for some years of my life.

One of the things that peeves me no end is when people talk about VA as if it were welfare. It was earned, just as much as the paycheck you get Friday is earned. Some people worked harder and gave more to earn their VA benefits but we all earned them.

John Henry

walter said...

Some of us feel vet benefits should be at the very top of untouchables...certainly active duty folk. Army band? Somewhat below the top...

PuertoRicoSpaceport.com said...

Kyzernick,

I know you said that VA is not socialist. However, you also said that if taken individually it is socialist.

Just to clarify what got my blood hot.

John Henry

jr565 said...

Not all noational socialists were Nazis. case in point, Bernie sanders. But he is a national socialist.

Bill Peschel said...

Great comments on both WWII and the Civil War! It was a pleasure reading the discussion.

n.n said...

jr565:

It's a predisposition correlated with establishment of monopolies, whether it is by design (e.g. communism, socialism, fascism) or by chance. The effect is suppression or destruction of competing interests to keep the honest people honest and others from running amuck. The amplifying effect of redistribution schemes only exacerbates and accelerates corruption of the population to secure a minority rule. This includes, but is not limited to, dysfunctional behaviors that sabotage evolutionary fitness (e.g. pro-creation), migration policies that marginalize and displace native populations (e.g. excessive or unmeasured -- illegal -- immigration), and fiscal policies that devalue domestic capital and labor.

Anonymous said...

Having defined benefits as part of the reward/payment for service to the country IS NOT socialist. But the way the VA program does it IS.

This is not like your job giving you health insurance or paying for your medical care. Instead, the government builds and operates the sources of that care. The "means of production" if you will.

So yes, the VA is a socialist program.

Kyzernick said...

John Henry

I know what you mean. It is only socialist in that it's supported by government taxation. Personally, I don't think of it as socialist, and I feel it is akin to a private industry pension or something like it. But, to try to stretch it and reason with our UnReasonableNanny, I labelled it as socialist because it is government run.

And naturally, since it is gov't run, it is in shambles. Of course, those stories hurt Obama and the Dems, so recent VA mismanagement hasn't even made the news in some time.

Nothing but the best for our vets is what we should all want. I don't mind paying taxes for that. Just wish we could fix the VA so it could fulfill it's mission.

CWJ said...

"Also, I don't need to resort to petty ad hominems to advance an argument"

ARM claims to change his MO. Film at eleven!

Michael K said...

"In your mind, is or is not Social Security a socialist policy? And, if you insist on irrelevancies, Bismark introduced it in Germany to nullify the appeal of socialists to the working class,"

ARM thinks that anything not pure Laissez Faire must be socialist. If you save money to retire, does that make you socialist ? By your definition that must be true.

We call that reductio ad absurd and most people know better. Social Security was begun as an old age pension for those too poor or too stupid to save.

Unlike many European nations, U.S. social security "insurance" was supported from "contributions" in the form of taxes on individuals’ wages and employers’ payrolls rather than directly from Government funds

Later, Congresses wrecked the finances, which were never too sturdy to begin with, by adding all sorts of additional beneficiaries.

ARM, I thought you were slightly smarter than that. I know it is very important to you, more important than logic, say, to tell those who call themselves "conservative" that they are really socialists and, therefore, no smarter than you are.

Sadly, it is not true. Bismarck introduced a whole series of policies, including workers compensation for injuries at work, for example. You can call it socialism if you like but calling a tail a leg doesn't make cow have five legs.

AReasonableMan said...

Michael K said...
If you save money to retire, does that make you socialist ?


Obviously not. But, equally obviously that is not what we are talking about here. We are talking about a coercive program that you have no option but to participate in. If SS is not socialist then neither is Obamacare.

Terry said...

AReasonableMan wrote;
"If SS is not socialist then neither is Obamacare."
But . . . but . . . my money is in an individual numbered account! The politicians say so! The Democrats keep saying that it's my money, not the government's money!
Actually, SS passes the socialism test because eventually the program will run out of other peoples money.

Terry said...

If I wait until I am 67 to retire, and live as long as the actuarial tables tell me that I will live, I will get back everything I've put into SS within a percentage point or two. No accounting for inflation, no accounting for alternative investments, just like putting the money in the mattress (the dollar amount is about $300k).

averagejoe said...

National Socialist- That rings a bell...

Original Mike said...

"We are talking about a coercive program that you have no option but to participate in."

IOW, it's a tax.

Terry said...

"Bismark introduced it in Germany to nullify the appeal of socialists to the working class"
This is especially hilarious. Why did Bismarck introduce universal health care? How better to nullify the appeal of socialists! Why did Bismarck coordinate industrial and social policy? How better to nullify the appeal of socialists! Why did Bismarck eject the Catholic church from all of Germany's government institutions? How better to nullify the appeal of the socialists! Why did Bismarck call his state socialism "state socialism"? How better to nullify the appeal of state socialism!

Michael K said...

" We are talking about a coercive program that you have no option but to participate in."

So, if your employer sets up a pension plan and you don't want to participate, you are fighting socialism? That doesn't pass the laugh test.

I will grant that Social Security has morphed into socialism but that's what the US government, of both parties, has become. Stupid people, mostly lefties, say that France has a single payer government health plan but it didn't start that way. It was funded from payroll deductions. If France had not f**ked up their economy with socialism, the health plan, called "Security Sociale" by the way, would still be employer payroll financed. I don't object to socialistic plans for the poor and those who cannot cope but the rest of us and the original social security members were not adopting socialism.

Matt said...

@Michael K - Employee/Employer relationships are based on consent by both parties. If the retirement plan is mandatory and you do not like it, you are welcome to resign.

But your example is crazy and if it exists it is not common - because the market.

AReasonableMan said...

Michael K said...
I will grant that Social Security has morphed into socialism


As is medicare, which was my point. Republican politicians are socialists. Not as socialist as Bernie perhaps, but socialists nonetheless, by any reasonable definition of the term. Democrats are free marketers, not as much as the Republicans perhaps, but unquestionably in favor of some aspects of free markets nonetheless. Both sides are pragmatic rather than ideological, adopting a range of policies to placate the inconsistent desires and beliefs of their voters.

Terry said...

Are you familiar with the term "social democracy", ARM? It is not unreasonable to believe that any democracy with an educated populace will adopt some form of social democracy, since a sizeable voting block will identify with the "have nots" and use government to get what in non-democracies they would get from revolution or not get at all.
Simply saying "Republicans and Democrats are both socialists, there fore you shouldn't call Sanders a socialist" is not helpful. "Ted Cruz? Bernie Sanders? What's the diff?"

PuertoRicoSpaceport.com said...

Re whether SS is socialist:

there seems to be a major misunderstanding how SS works. It is not like an "insurance" program where you put money in and get money back out on the basis of what you put it. It is presented that way but it is not.

FDR, and his Sec Labor Francis Perkins wanted it to be like that but there was a Constitutional problem. The Constitution gives the govt no authority to do that.

They were scratching their heads when Justice Harlan Stone had tea with Perkins one day. He told her that he would have to find an insurance program unconstitutional. Instead, he told her, the govt should make it a straight welfare program. The govt has the power to do that. Then, they should use their taxing power to impose a tax to finance it. They are legally separated and thus constitutional. If you go to the SS Admin's website and search perkins stone tea party you will find the story.

This is why they can talk about means testing, changing benefits and contributions, not paying to people who live outside the US.

It is also why SS can no more go broke than AFDC, food stamps or any other welfare program. Saying SS is going to run out of money is pure unadulterated 100% horseshit.

It can run out of money if Congress refuses to fund it. No other way.

John Henry

Original Mike said...

"Democrats are free marketers, not as much as the Republicans perhaps, but unquestionably in favor of some aspects of free markets nonetheless."

For example?

Michael K said...

"Democrats are free marketers,"

You just don't understand but I'm not surprised. Prior to 1968 there were some Democrats who could be called "free marketers," but not anymore. Yes, the ruling class is a form of socialist. They have all learned how to fund their campaigns and get elected. If you think governing is their job, you are as foolish as I think you are.

There are a few Republicans, mostly in the Tea Party, who are free marketers. All free marketers, with the exception of Ron Paul, realize that a social democracy is necessary in a mixed society like this one. Not everyone is capable of standing free in a laissez faire economy.

You are trying very hard to make socialism sound respectable but it isn't. It makes no sense in the long run even though Keynes said, "In the long run we are all dead." You can run a socialist system quite a while as long as you have practical people running things. If you let the economy run pretty free, it can fund a lot of foolishness.

If you put ignorant ideologues like Obama in power, the party ends pretty quickly. If they also get hold of defense in a dangerous world, it can all end with a bang.

The Kaiser was such a fool that many of his ministers did not tell him things. Unfortunately, Obama has chosen people as stupid and foolish as he is to help him run things.

PuertoRicoSpaceport.com said...

One other comment about the VA medical. They get a huge amount of bad press and perhaps they deserve it. I only have experience with the San Juan PR VA hospital and a satellite outpatient clinic in Ceiba PR.

I am not entitled by injury or lack of funds to VA treatment. I have to pay, cash money, no insurance, for all services. I go about twice a year for a routine doctor's visit. I would rate both hospital and clinic 10 out of 10, top notch. Attentive, on time, great service. I mentioned offhand that sometimes I have trouble sleeping and it turns out that they have a sleep clinic I can sign up for.

Two of my brothers in law have been hospitalized in SJ with non-service related injuries. Both received fantastic care.

My son, an MD, did rotations and internships in several hospitals including Mayo Clinic, Hopkins and UPenn. I had not had much of an opinion of the VA until he did a rotation there in Med school. He convinced me that it was pretty good and got me to sign up about 5 years ago. He also rates it very highly.

I have no idea whether these are exceptions or if this great service is common. Perhaps a bit of both.

Anyone else have patient experience with VA? What do you think?

I also, back in the 70s, financed both undergrad and grad school with VA tuition benefits. A bureaucratic pain in the ass to deal with, lots of paperwork. Just like everything else associated with my education. But they did pay for my education and I am grateful. I earned that also.


John Henry

AReasonableMan said...

Original Mike said...
For example?


Did you notice any real difference in how the economy ran between the Bush and Obama presidencies? Other than the fact that the Obama economy didn't trigger a global financial meltdown, of course. It was a mixed economy under Bush and a similarly mixed economy under Obama.



AReasonableMan said...

Terry said...
Simply saying "Republicans and Democrats are both socialists, there fore you shouldn't call Sanders a socialist" is not helpful.


I certainly don't have any problem with you calling him a socialist.

walter said...

Well ARM...despite the "stimulus", cash for clunkers etc and the various hopes of summer of recovery, ther "recovery" is for shit. No wonder with such a free marketer as Obama doing his best to grommet down the wet blanket. Even the MSM ended up giving up on, even explaining the misleading unemployment numbers... those being routinely adjusted downward post fanfare announcements.
But hey..the guy does exhibit a very selective understanding of economics.
To wit:
“Under my plan of a cap-and-trade system, electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket. Even regardless of what I say about whether coal is good or bad,” he added. “Because I’m capping greenhouse gases, coal power plants, you know, natural gas, you name it — whatever the plants were, whatever the industry was, they would have to, uh, retrofit their operations. That will cost money. They will pass that money on to consumers.”
That guy got Ann's vote, BTW.

walter said...

By the way, someof ACA's economic impacts were originally and then further delayed. The gift that keeps on giving. While we're on a roll, let's get bright eyed Bernie at the helm. Why stop at $15/hr? Feel the Bern!

Michael K said...

"Anyone else have patient experience with VA? What do you think?"

The VA was an early adopter of the electronic medical record and has pioneered some innovative approaches to the aged. They were overwhelmed by the Iraq and Afghanistan wars and the bureaucracy is obviously for shit. Doctors and bureaucrats don't get along.

ARM, You obviously have not read anything about the MBS and Fannie Mae crisis. You could do well to read the books I recommended but you won't. Bush was faced with the dotcom crash and the 9/11 attack which resembled the San Francisco earthquake in its effects on insurance companies and the economy. Ever heard of the Panic of 1907 ? Of course not.

Bush did pretty well with that basket of crabs. The economy was growing and jobs were improving. The Iraq invasion is a whipping boy to the left but there are valid arguments about it. Paul Bremer will be seen by history as the real villain but Bush was far too impressed by him.

cubanbob said...

AReasonableMan said...

tim in vermont said...
Support for social security does not make one a socialist.

Like hell it doesn't. Social Security was the love child of the ur-socialist FDR. Maybe you argue that Instapundit is a cafeteria national socialist, but still a national socialist.

7/29/15, 2:13 PM

Interesting is how FDR and the Democrats have sold and have been selling it like it was an annuity even with the annual statement of contributions (investment) and retirement benefits.

Original Mike said...

"Did you notice any real difference in how the economy ran between the Bush and Obama presidencies? Other than the fact that the Obama economy didn't trigger a global financial meltdown, of course."

Are you fucking kidding?

Original Mike said...

Actually, I've read you long enough to know you're not kidding. You're a fucking economic idiot.

Gahrie said...

Did you notice any real difference in how the economy ran between the Bush and Obama presidencies?

I noticed that Bush sent plenty of Wall Street criminals to prison..Obama, not so much.

PBandJ_LeDouanier said...

Hotair did the same thing. First bho was a nazi, now Bernie too.

Have cons lost their minds?

walter said...

You're right. No need to "go there"? Let's just call them idiots. Better?

Gahrie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Gahrie said...

Have cons lost their minds?

We're not the ones about to crown Hillary....

PBandJ_LeDouanier said...

Why does this post exist? Is meadehouse cracking up as he usual suspects going nuts in the comments?

It's impossible to imagine meadhouse thinks Bernie is a nazi.

At least a non-crazy person can respond to the "idiot" accusation. But, "Bernie-the-nazi"?! Wtf?

PBandJ_LeDouanier said...

The guy wants immigration rules, somehow, cons say, this makes him a nazi.

Insane

PBandJ_LeDouanier said...

The good news is that con loons aren't worried about a liberal world gov.

walter said...

PB&J, this is Althouse quoting Instapundit doing Altparse. The original post..as often the case..not as interesting as the discussion that follows.

walter said...

The fun here is how La Raza et al reacts to the Bern..
I suspect they see through him and understand he's all talk...if he matters at all.

PBandJ_LeDouanier said...

I did see that it was an insty link.

Anywho, some of you seem a little too excitable.

cubanbob said...

AReasonableMan said...

Original Mike said...
For example?

Did you notice any real difference in how the economy ran between the Bush and Obama presidencies? Other than the fact that the Obama economy didn't trigger a global financial meltdown, of course. It was a mixed economy under Bush and a similarly mixed economy under Obama.



7/29/15, 8:47 PM

A timing issue. The policies that set up the crises were not put in by Bush or Republicans. Al Gore would not have done any better had he won in 200 and was re-elected in 2004. John Kerry is even less believable as a steward of the economy. By the way, has anyone seen his discharge form in these past eleven years. 6 years on and on the whole the economy is still worse off for the working class overall. So much for Obamanomics.

walter said...

This here is a place for excitement PB&J..where the lightbulb joke can be transformed into "rapey".

CB,
I don't even have a vague sense of Kerry regarding the economy. He's been busy trying to contain his shit in Iran for so long..

But again, the fun part is Bern pointing out what's wrong..shining light on O's shit..while prescribing/flinging complete shit of his own.

narciso said...

it's more the difference between stalinism, which wanted revolution in one country, over trotsky who wanted it everywhere,

the point in the link is Sanders is quite confused about the basis for economic policy, but we knew that already,

walter said...

La Raza will straighetn ole Bern out as to who controls the nation's future. Silly Bern..

Larry Nelson said...

I have really enjoyed this informative discussion.
I don't see any of the participants here getting "excitable", but what can you tell by text, either way?

Democrats are looking vulnerable.
Hillary is a horrible candidate.
All the rest are old.
Their far left base has outrun the tastes of most Americans and vaulted an unqualified socialist to the top of their heap.
Instapundit nailed it with a nationalized socialism label.

walter said...

"I don't see any of the participants here getting "excitable", but what can you tell by text, either way?"

That's just certain folks recoiling to reading an opposing viewpoint..feels like shouting to them.

AReasonableMan said...

cubanbob said...
A timing issue.


So six years after Republicans regained control of both the congress and the presidency, Bush was just unlucky? After running up the mother of all housing bubbles and debt binges during those years, they were just unlucky that the economy tanked?

As a pragmatic moderate I find it difficult to understand the blind partisanship required to believe this kind of nonsense.

AReasonableMan said...

Kyzernick said...
You're enforcing a stupid "One-Drop" rule in political discourse,


Have you ever considered what fraction of the federal budget Social Security and Medicare comprise? It is is considerably more than 'one drop'.

Michael K said...

" they were just unlucky that the economy tanked?"

The Democrats taking Congress in 2006 helped to bring it on as they blocked the belated effort of Bush officials to reform things. I have a few videos of hearings but have to go to work now.

Tank said...

140 comments arguing semantics regarding our obviously mixed economy to see if ARM could call the conservatives here Socialists! or not.

Good trolling Mr. ARM.

tim in vermont said...

After running up the mother of all housing bubbles and debt binges during those years, they were just unlucky that the economy tanked?

Who signed the repeal of Glass Steagall? It was Bill Clinton, the same guy who recklessly launched a cruise missile attack on a sovereign Afghanistan with whom we were not at war, rather than trying to get bin Laden through legal means of extradition.

Brando said...

"So six years after Republicans regained control of both the congress and the presidency, Bush was just unlucky? After running up the mother of all housing bubbles and debt binges during those years, they were just unlucky that the economy tanked?"

Can you point to anything Bush and the GOP congress did that "ran up" the housing bubble, or otherwise caused the economy to crash? (I note that it is a matter of debate whether the burst of the bubble caused the economy to initially crash, or if it was the slowing of the economy that caused the bubble to burst, but both contributed to one another) I hear Bush getting blamed all the time for it, and yet no one can point to any particular policy or law from 2001-2008 that actually caused the mess.

Yes, I do believe the economy is mostly luck when it comes to presidents--there are some things they can do to make matters better or worse, but for the most part an economy is far too great a force, dependent on far too many factors, for the policies of a president or even a whole government to make a difference.

But if you disagree, I'd be interested in hearing which Bush action caused the problem--and extra credit if you can point to prominent Democrats who warned about such consequences (housing bubble, economic collapse) when Bush took such actions.

Rusty said...

At least a non-crazy person can respond to the "idiot" accusation. But, "Bernie-the-nazi"?! Wtf?

Eventually it will devolve into it.


The recession has been going on since 2008, ARM. There has been no recovery except for those who were rewarded with the "stimulus" which, even you will have to admit, went to the presidents cronys. Who were rewarded hugely.

Tank said...

@Brando

One thing he did was encourage mortgage lending to people who were really not qualified. One of many places you can look is here.

Democrats, of course, wanted even more lending to unqualified people.

Although you can find, as Michael K avers, some pushback from Bush admin officials, the overall line from Bush was encouraging and bragging about this lending. There are a million articles about this. Just look for them.

This is ONE of the things Bush did.

Let's not we conservatives make Bush out to be something he wasn't. Carter started it, Clinton made it much worse, and Bush picked up where he left off. We attorneys who were closing these loans were just shaking our heads and wondering what the lenders could be thinking.

tim in vermont said...

One thing he did was encourage mortgage lending to people who were really not qualified

You mean like when Obama organized a takeover of a bank branch to shame the bank into making loans that would never be repaid?

Brando said...

"One thing he did was encourage mortgage lending to people who were really not qualified."

He may have spoken about how such lending was a good thing (and in this he was simply continuing what basically every administration for two generations was doing) but where did he have a significant change in policy that made the bubble bigger? If he relaxed the Fannie/Freddie lending standards, or vastly increased the mortgage deduction, I could understand that--but far as I can tell Bush just kept up with the same course his predecessors (and frankly, his successor) took because increased homeownership was seen as a societal good. Arguably the Fed keeping interest rates low helped inflate the bubble more than any executive action.

The real culprit for the bubble as I see it was the fact that during the 2002-4 recovery, people wanted to invest in something and the stock market had burned a lot of them in 2000, so housing seemed a good idea. As values increased, the mania took on a life of its own--this belief that prices would keep growing and holding, and people bought for investment rather than just for a place to live. Lenders, appraisers (who are too wedded to the lenders anyway), buyers and regulators all bought into this belief, so standards were relaxed and too many were overleveraged when finally the delusion broke, hence collapse.

This was helped along by government, which in hindsight could have done some things to reduce the inflating of the bubble, but ultimately the problem was this belief in ever-growing house prices which was shared by too many parties who enabled one another.

Brando said...

Mind you, I'm not defending everything Bush did--I think he made a mistake in passing tax cuts with a sunset provision rather than more comprehensive reform, and he signed a lot of spending bills that increased the deficit and made a big mistake in going to war in Iraq. But I think he also gets blame in a lot of areas where he doesn't deserve it.

Tank said...

@Brando

Bush encouraged lending to unqualified borrowers right up until the economy imploded. Don't give him a pass.

@Tim

Of course Democrats and Zero are worse. I said that.

John said...

I would note that few liberals and conservatives, if any, have called Berine a "Nazi". That seems like a straw man.

Some of us don't use the term Nazi at all as it was mainly a construct to appease Stalin who thought Hitler gave socialism a bad name.

It is mainly the progressives and others on the left who are using the term with regard to Bernie.

Bernie IS a national socialist. He tells us that pretty explicitly. He tells us that he is a "socialist", his word, not mine. He tells us in the VOX interview that he is a nationalist.

Seems only fair to call him a national socialist. If that has unfortunate comparisons with other folks who called themselves National Socialists, tough shit.

John Henry

n.n said...

Tank:

Bush wanted to investigate the viability of these policies and solvency of the institutions involved (e.g. Fannie and Freddie). He was stopped by the Democrats and members of his own party.

AReasonableMan said...

Tank said...
We attorneys who were closing these loans were just shaking our heads and wondering what the lenders could be thinking.


They were thinking, how quickly can I package this into a mortgage backed security and get this piece of shit off my books.

Terry said...

It's odd that some people think that the Dems would have put there hand up and stopped the easy-money mortgage machine. It's not the kind of behavior they have shown in the past.

Anonymous said...

Glad to see that ARM (A Real Moron) is at least no longer repeating that falsehood that 'Hitler got rid of all labor unions' as a way of proving that the Nazi's weren't socialist.
Hitler combined all the labor unions into a single massive union. He raised laborers' wages, gave them profit-sharing and seats on corporate boards. He also created a program of highly subsidized and free vacations for the workers and their families. Hitler also completely controlled German industry. He told companies what they could build and what they could charge. And this was before the war.

No, nothing socialist at all about the Nazi's.

Also, whoever wrote that the term 'Nazi" was invented by Stalin is completely wrong. German has very long compound words and Germans are fond of shortening them into acronyms. 'Nazi' is just short for Nationalsozialistische.

AReasonableMan said...

The Nazi's were socialist in the same sense Instapundit is socialist - they supported some socialist policies. I don't have a problem with that.

Clearly, abolishing trade unions is not a socialist policy, although Instapundit probably supports that, like the Nazis.





Anonymous said...

Once again ARM is confronted with a fact and then totally ignores it... trade unions were NOT abolished in Nazi Germany, they were consolidated into a massive organization. Soviets did essentially the same thing. Were they not socialist?

You are really quite the classic 'useful idiot' ARM.

Anonymous said...

"Germany had only one realistic chance to win the war, and that was a fleet of 300 U-boats operational by the start of hostilities, which might have been sufficient to strangle British shipping, thus forcing a capitulation in the West."

Nonsense.

While our industrial capacity certainly helped, what allowed us to win the war was that we were determined to win the war. In hindsight, there's a tendency to think this was foreordained. This neglects how close Britain came to having Lord Halifax in charge instead of Churchill -- and Halifax would very likely have sought an accomodation with Hitler.

Which would have meant a new Dark Ages for the world.

Not that we're not teetering on the brink of one anyway, but still.

AReasonableMan said...

Livermoron, I don't think your really understand what a trade union is.



Michael K said...

ARM, I doubt you understand the difference between a "trade union," which has some societal value as it trains apprentices, and "a union" that is an inefficient parasite. The UAW killed the at industry. The public employee unions will kill the states and cities, if not the country.

Michael K said...

auto industry.

Nate Whilk said...

Brando said, It's not fair to compare a "social democrat" like Sanders with the Nazis, but the flippant way American leftists proudly wear the "socialist" label without accepting the socialist roots of the Nazi party earns them a bit of snark.

Leftists call Republicans or conservatives "fascist" practically like a Tourette syndrome tic. As Orwell wrote in 1946, 'The word "Fascism" has now no meaning except in so far as it signifies "something not desirable".' So I think it's perfectly fair when we provide substantive links to it.

Anonymous said...

ARM, you never seem to offer any facts in your 'rebuttals'.
I am not surprised. Quite the opposite.
I was expecting yet another of your 'because I said so' responses.

Time for you to finish ironing your brown shirt, ARM. You need to look good at the Parteitag.

AReasonableMan said...

Livermoron, you seem oblivious to the history that is well established.

"Hitler began suppressing the trade unions (along with Communists and Social Democrats) in Feb of 1933 as part of his rise to power. They would attack and ransack offices, steal equipment, beat up and imprison members(usually those in leadership roles) .
Towards May of '33 the trade unions began to distance themselves from the Social Democrats to preserve themselves as an entity but on May 2nd the brownshirts and SS men occupied every trade union office affiliated with the Social Democrats, took control of the newspapers and periodicals of the trade unions and seized their banks.
Trade union officials in leadership roles were either sent to concentration camps or killed outright.
The Nazi's effectively destroyed any power the trade unions had and subjugated it for their own"

Source- The Coming of the Third Reich by Richard J. Evans

OR

"On May 2, 1933, Adolf Hitler's storm troopers occupied all trade union headquarters across Germany, and union leaders were arrested and put in prison or concentration camps. Many were beaten and tortured. All of the unions' funds - in other words, the workers' money - were confiscated. Former union officials were put on blacklists, preventing them from finding work.

In their place, Hitler set up a "German Labor Front," which included both employers and workers. Under the guise of providing benefits and services to workers, it supported the racist and pro-corporate Nazi agenda and spread Nazi propaganda among workers. Jews were banned from membership. Collective bargaining and the right to strike were outlawed. Pay and working conditions were decided by Hitler officials. As a result, wages were frozen, and the average workweek increased by 20 percent in just a few years.

Hitler's destruction of unions was supported by important German business leaders and conservative politicians who shared the Nazi fear of a socialist revolution during the turbulent 1920s and early '30s. Many of these people wanted restrictions on or complete abolition of unions, which they felt had become "too powerful." This was one reason why many conservatives helped the Nazis come into power and joined or supported Hitler's government."

Michael K said...

ARM, those were the OTHER Socialists. You know, the ones that didn't like Hitler. The Socialists signed the Versailles Treaty.

Come on, you can do better than this.

AReasonableMan said...

It seems to me that the trade unionists should get to decide what is and isn't a trade union and by their score the GLF was not a trade union. I agree with them.

Anonymous said...

I am very clear on the history, ARM. The trade unions were primarily communist and were a thorn in the side of their ideological brethren the Nazis. Hitler purged most trade unions of their leaders and formed one giant union. He gave them all the things I wrote of in my previous post...higher wages, more vacations, profit-sharing and positions on corporate boards. He also gave them a national Worker's Day holiday. The workers were required to pay for their union membership and the money went to the Nazis.
You were required to be a member of the national union.
Increased labor hours came with war.
The soviets did about the same thing to their trade unions.
Essentially, Hitler and Stalin both made sure that the unions were controlled by the government. And they appeased the workers by giving them the stuff they demanded.
So trade unions existed in Germany under the mantle of the national union. They were run by Nazis instead of commies and they were socialist in nature.

I respond to this particular citation of yours within the body of the message:

"In their place, Hitler set up a "German Labor Front," {ahhh, so Hitler supplanted trade unions with another union} which included both employers and workers. Under the guise of providing benefits and services to workers {guise?? those things were provided. And which unions are opposed to benefits and services?}, it supported the racist and pro-corporate Nazi agenda and spread Nazi propaganda among workers {hard to imagine a trade union doing something like this. Riiight.} . Jews were banned from membership.{see previous statement and add in Negroes} Collective bargaining and the right to strike were outlawed. {True as well in Soviet Union. True also in the USA when talking about public employees and in time of national emergency.} Pay and working conditions were decided by Hitler officials. As a result, wages were frozen Only after a significant increase and as part of the war effort.} , and the average workweek increased by 20 percent in just a few years. Hmm. I seem to recall something happening just a few short years after the Nazis came to power that might have impacted workers' hours. Now what was that??}

ARM, critical thinking isn't against the law -except in your case where it runs afoul of then Laws of Probability.

Anonymous said...



Blogger AReasonableMan said...
It seems to me that the trade unionists should get to decide what is and isn't a trade union and by their score the GLF was not a trade union. I agree with them.

Ahhh yes, ARM critical thinking on display again.

Anonymous said...

And here is what Wiki has to say about the Deutsche Arbeiters Front (German Workers Front)

The German Labour Front (German: Deutsche Arbeitsfront, DAF) was the National Socialist trade union organization which replaced the various trade unions of the Weimar Republic after Adolf Hitler's rise to power.

Its leader was Robert Ley, who stated its aim as 'to create a true social and productive community' (Smelster, 1988). Theoretically, DAF existed to act as a medium through which workers and owners could mutually represent their interests. Wages were set by the 12 DAF trustees. The employees were given relatively high set wages and security of employment, and dismissal was increasingly made difficult. Social security and leisure programmes were started, canteens, breaks and regular working times were established, and German workers were generally satisfied by what the DAF gave them in repayment for their absolute loyalty.

The article goes on to describe the various benefits.
I am aware that WIKI is not a definitive source. But for someone as intellectually lazy as ARM it is a welcome port in a storm.

AReasonableMan said...

The Nazis eliminated all trade unions and trade unionists, who were socialists, and forced workers to join their fascist organization, the GLF, and you want to call that a trade union. If it was a trade union, exactly equivalent to the pre-existing trade unions, why did the Nazis go to all this bother? The answer is obvious.

AReasonableMan said...

Wages were set by the 12 DAF trustees.

This statement alone tells you it wasn't a trade union.

Anonymous said...

You are just dumb. They replaced commies with Nazis. They were all socialists. And didn't Wisconsin require union membership for many jobs?
Who said exactly equivalent? Those strawmen are a fire hazard.

Face it, you are just back-pedaling , moving goalposts and making shit up.
You. Are. A. Laughingstock.

AReasonableMan said...

OK so you concede that the DAF was not exactly equivalent to the pre-existing trade unions. This is progress. Now the issue is how different and were these differences of the kind that it becomes ridiculous to call the DAF a trade union, a viewpoint which seems to be very much a minority opinion.

The fact that the Nazis killed the socialist trade union leaders seems definitive that the DAF was a very different organization. If the Democrats came in and killed all the Republican leaders, then installed all their own leadership and forbade anyone who had previously belonged to the Republican party from joining another party would it be reasonable to still call this new entity the Republican party?



Anonymous said...

OK so now you concede that the trade unions weren't abolished, just supplanted by the DAP. That's progress.
Nazis didn't kill the socialist trade leaders, dumbshit. The Nazis ARE socialists.
The workers liked the arrangement. Aren't unions supposed to keep workers happy?

You are playing a game of Twister in your attempts to wriggle out of the fact that the Nazis were left-wing socialists...Just. Like. You.

Michael K said...

OMG ! This is still going on !

"forced workers to join their fascist organization"

So?, Socialists are fascists.

Time to move on ARM.

AReasonableMan said...

The Nazis did kill the socialist trade union leaders. Literally no one other than you suggests otherwise.

If all of this is just a pathetic attempt to convince me, or anyone, that the Nazis were left wing you are making a fool of yourself, for no good reason. A few people feel the need, and it really does seem to be a need, to promote this idea but they are a tiny minority. Most people recognize that fascism was a right-wing phenomena and that the right has had its fair share of evil doers - to adopt a phrase.

But, while we are on the topic, do you favor the immediate elimination of social security and medicare? If not, why not given that these are socialist programs, by any reasonable definition of the term. Are you now or have you ever been a person who voted for a politician who failed to make elimination of these socialist programs their primary goal upon election?

Anonymous said...

I didn't say socialist trade leaders weren't killed. They were killed if they were commie socialist, not national socialist. They let the national Socialist union leaders live and prosper. You don't comprehend plain English do you?

Your need to distance yourself from your ideology's past and impose it on mine is telling. You know what I say is true and that my assessment of you is spot on.

You are a socialist. the Nazis were socialist. the commies are socialist. Just/ Like. You.

Own it.

and you nonsensical question about welfare etc. is just the graspings of a child at thing he doesn't understand.

Your ignorance fuels your bigotry. See, you even have that in common with the Nazis.

Gahrie said...

Most people recognize that fascism was a right-wing phenomena

If so, most people are wrong. Fascism is absolutely a Leftwing ideology.

and that the right has had its fair share of evil doers - to adopt a phrase.

This is true. They just weren't fascists.

AReasonableMan said...

Gahrie said...
This is true. They just weren't fascists.


This is progress also. You are half right.

You guys should start a support group with Tim of Vermont. Maybe you could organize a trip to Germany to see how you views are received there.

AReasonableMan said...

Livermoron said...
I didn't say socialist trade leaders weren't killed. They were killed if they were commie socialist, not national socialist. They let the national Socialist union leaders live and prosper.


Name one.

Anonymous said...

I lived in Germany many years. I read original Nazi documents in German, So, Du kannst mich am Arsch lecken.

You know only what is fed you. You can't respond to any of my posts in specific because you are just plain ignorant and bigoted. And YOU want ME to do your educating for you?

Nazi trade unions supported Hitler and did his bidding. Why would he kill them?

Nazis, Communists, Democrats...all socialists. Just. Like. You.
and Debbie Wasserman-Schulz - she can['t tell the difference either.