No Minister

Thoughts on voting in general

with 5 comments

Good old Silent Cal, still one of the best and most underrated Presidents in US history. Many people have speculated as to how things would have turned out in the wake of the 1929 stock market crash had he still been in charge rather than his idiot VP, Herbert Hoover.

He and the Republicans brilliantly handled a similar crash in 1920, setting the scene for the Roaring Twenties (The Depression You Never Heard of)

The 1929 crash was not the biggest economic crash in history.  It was not even the biggest crash in that decade. In 1920 the stock market fell further and faster than in 1929—and the collapse in the monetary base during 1920–1921 was the largest in U.S. history—yet within eighteen months recovery was complete.

In 1928, despite having been President for most of two terms – having taken over from President Harding when he died – he could have run for office again, and there’s no doubt he would have won in a landslide. But he turned down the opportunity and Hoover got the brass ring instead.

Perhaps I’m being unfair to Hoover, who was quite an intelligent, educated (engineer) and accomplished chap. But his ideas for government, especially in a crisis like 1929, were awful. Coolidge once said of him:

“for six years that man has given me unsolicited advice—all of it bad.”

And yet he chose to allow “that man” to take over from him and implement ‘bad advice’. No wonder Hoover pushed the highest income tax rate through the roof in response to the Great Depression:

The Revenue Act of 1932 (June 6, 1932, ch. 209, 47 Stat. 169) raised United States tax rates across the board, with the rate on top incomes rising from 25 percent to 63 percent. The estate tax was doubled and corporate taxes were raised by almost 15 percent.

Something to remember the next time a Lefty student of US history talks to you about the laissez-faire of Hoover.

The County Election (George Caleb Bingham)

We’ve certainly come a long way from that scene of elections in Missouri, which democracy Bingham believed in sufficiently to serve in the Union cause during the Civil War, despite being a Missouri native and politician.

Instead we have this, from a thoughtful piece on the 2022 US Mid-term elections:

This night is discouraging, but not because Republicans didn’t have as good a night as expected. It’s really because it seems that no level of economic turmoil or inflation or moral depravity is enough to sway people to change their minds. America is fractured now; divided and probably irreparably so. The great sort will continue.

And tomorrow, and in weeks to come, when Joe Biden stops propping up the economy by dumping the U.S. oil reserves to keep energy prices down, all heck is going to break loose. I was hoping that a GOP sweep would bring sanity back, but there will be no GOP sweep and the Republicans can shrug and say they can’t do anything to stop the onslaught that is about to happen.

Suffering is coming. Americans voted for what they’re about to get.

Perhaps that’s just how it has to be. During the Civil War even Lincoln himself, in trying to figure out the terrible conflict, concluded that it was God’s punishment for slavery.

But there’s also this aspect of modern America, best captured by the late Boston University professor emeritus Angelo Codevilla in his 2010 bestseller, The Ruling Class: How They Corrupted America, the nation has become divided between a “Ruling Class” whose “chief pretension is its intellectual superiority” and who thinks that most Americans – which Codevilla called the “Country Class”“are unfit to run their own lives.” Moreover, most Americans have noticed that “the Ruling Class has lost every war it has fought, run up an unplayable national debt, and generally made life worse.”

And in noting that I do wonder, as I look at that previous comment about what it will take to break Democrat voters away from their own punishment, whether the same thing is happening to the USA that has happened to France (Choose your philosophers carefully), courtesy of a ruling class whose “chief pretension is its intellectual superiority”:

Whatever became of France? Once the most beautiful, brilliant and civilised country on earth, it is now caught in a seemingly irreversible spiral of decline….

“Older French generations are just beginning to realise how bewitched they were by the intellectual gurus who seized power in the chaotic aftermath of 1968.

“Perhaps the cleverest, most cynical and most pernicious of these Pied Pipers was Michel Foucault. His books and lectures undermined the moral foundations of French history, society and intellectual life. Only now, decades after his death in 1984, is France gradually coming to terms with the fact that it allowed its collective mind to be befuddled by an evil genius …

“[Prize-winning French novelist] Ernaux’s works are saturated in the solipsism and nihilism of [this] nation in decline.”A subtler French writer than Ernaux, Michel Houellebecq, published a far more prophetic novel earlier this year. Anéantir (‘Destroy’) is set in 2027, as Macron leaves office. His vision of France is grim: stricken by poverty and unemployment, it is a rapidly ageing society. Hence his focus is on fatal illness. Unlike Ernaux, whose depiction of her mother’s dementia is shockingly cold-blooded, Houellebecq’s writing about the end of life is suffused with humanity.

“Yet even Houellebecq sees no sunlit uplands for France. For him, as for most of his compatriots, Macron cannot come clean soon enough about the failures of leadership that have reduced France to such relentless economic, social, political and educational decline. The pessimism of the country’s greatest writer speaks volumes about a nation gripped by the politics of cultural despair.

“Houellebecq’s last testament is his valedictory elegy for a France that has lost its raison d’être. Under Macron, the French have reversed Descartes’ Cogito, ergo sum. Now it should read: ‘I no longer think, therefore I no longer am’.”

One difference is that for all their nice words about the Revolution, the Declaration of Independence, the Founding Fathers, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, Americans have always been less in thrall to intellectuals and more pragmatic about their choices and paths.

In short, America still has a chance at surviving as a lawful, prosperous, healthy society – whereas I think France is lost:

In L’archipel français (“The French Archipelago”), published in 2019, sociologist Jérome Fourquet writes of a French “collective nervous breakdown” and the “crumbling” of French society. He notes that the religious and historical moorings of the French people are disappearing: churches are empty, important moments in the country’s history are no longer taught in schools

[In 2018], France had 9.3 million people living under the poverty line (on an income not more than 1,063 euros per month), and surveys showed that hundreds of thousands of families were suffering from malnutrition…The French economy suffered as a result of the lockdown. The number of poor people increased sharply and now stands at 12 million (18.46% of the population). 

Those who might have thought that the beheading of Samuel Paty would lead the authorities to make drastic decisions were proven wrong. Today, teachers throughout France report the relentless threats they receive. In the complaints they file, many say that Muslim students threaten “doing a Samuel Paty” to them. Jewish teachers face anti-Semitic threats and insults.

Essayist Céline Pina writes that the murder of little Lola, the reactions of the murderer after the crime and the government’s attempt to impose silence about the event, mark another step in France’s slide towards collapse, barbarity and chaos.

Far more detail at the link: all of it terrible.

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Written by Tom Hunter

November 10, 2022 at 1:45 pm

5 Responses

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  1. In 1928, despite having been President for most of two terms – having taken over from President Harding when he died – he could have run for office again, and there’s no doubt he would have won in a landslide.

    The 22nd amendment which sets term limits on American Presidents was ratified in 1947 so it didn’t apply to Calvin Coolidge.

    The sad reality is that American democracy circa 2022 is kaput and voting for the average Joe in these troubled times is an exercise in total futility

    These are clearly the later days of the Republic as more and more Americans fall into desperate poverty while the real rulers of the “Free World™” grow rich on the blood of innocent people spilled across the globe in their millions by the over bloated American Military Machine.

    Strangely enough all the people in the video below almost certainly voted but probably don’t realize they did

    Andrei

    November 10, 2022 at 2:45 pm

    • Portland, controlled totally by Democrats, as it has been for decades now, and buried in a state also totally controlled by Democrats, with the latest results simply enforcing that:
      Senate race – Wyden(D) 55.9% Perkins(R) 41.3%
      Governor – Kotek(D) 46.7% Drazan(R) 43.9%

      As I put it in the post, Something, something, sowing, reaping…:
      I’d bet good money that every single person in that clip has voted – repeatedly voted – for Democrats to run the city of Portland and the State of Oregon in which it sits, including even Far Left “Democrats” like this moronic POS (check out the prints on her skirt).

      That’s one Sarah Iannarone, an open communist who ran in Portland’s 2020 mayoral contest against a radical Democrat named Ted Wheeler. They got 86% of the vote, with the communist only losing by less than six percent (40.76 percent of the total vote).

      Tom Hunter

      November 10, 2022 at 2:58 pm

  2. Another tough thread of commentary from NotTheBee. Among other things:

    For decades, I’ve been hearing people warn about what was going to happen in America if divorce and promiscuity was the norm, and if feelings and experiences were more important than facts and responsibility. If something had been done about it 20 years ago, maybe America would have stood a chance.

    It’s too late. We are about to reap what we’ve sown – not just since Obama became president, not since Big Tech took over, not since Justin Trudeau put on blackface – but since at least the 1950s, with roots stretching back to the Enlightenment and beyond.

    Tom Hunter

    November 10, 2022 at 4:36 pm

    • And

      Andrei

      November 10, 2022 at 9:50 pm

  3. Oh FFS

    So, now that Hochul has been elected, New Yorkers are begging her to get crime under control — even those who voted for her.

    “Now that Hochul has won, her priority needs to be do something about the crime in the subway,” one voter told The New York Post.

    “I’m happy Hochul won, but I don’t want her to think winning gives her a pass to keep things status quo,” said the voter. “She’s got her work cut out for her. None of us who rides the trains feel safe.”

    Then.
    Why.
    Did.
    You.
    Vote.
    For.
    Her?

    Time for one of the famous quotes…

    “The best argument against Democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.” – unknown and NOT Churchill

    Tom Hunter

    November 11, 2022 at 2:17 pm


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