Friday, 6 January 2012

Progressive Dementia

George Will is not a good writer.  He is a hack; a man who uses every ounce of the intelligence he has (or had) to disguise shameful lies as reasonable points.  He is a man who claimed there was no global warming in the '00s, because the hottest year on record was in the '90s.  You know, like how black musicians aren't increasingly being listened to and enjoyed by white people, because no single album has outsold Thriller, and that came out in '82. 

Not only is he a poor commentator and a mendacious charlatan, though, he's also horrifyingly dismissive of people who do not share his opinions, or his lack of journalistic standards.  On top of all of that, he has a stupid face, as though Bill Gates were constantly meloncholy and also an owl.

All of this has been true for a while (and indeed mentioned here more than once). So why am I going back to this particular well?  Because of this:
For the indefinite future, a specter is haunting progressivism, the specter of abundance. Because progressivism exists to justify a few people bossing around most people and because progressives believe that only government’s energy should flow unimpeded, they crave energy scarcities as an excuse for rationing — by them — that produces ever-more-minute government supervision of Americans’ behavior. 

Imagine what a horror 2011 was for progressives as Americans began to comprehend their stunning abundance of fossil fuels — beyond their two centuries’ supply of coal. Progressives responded with attempts to impede development of the vast, proven reserves of natural gas and oil here and in Canada. They bent the willowy Obama to delay approval of the Keystone XL pipeline to carry oil from Canadian tar sands; they raised environmental objections to new techniques for extracting gas and “tight” oil from shale formations.

An all-purpose rationale for rationing in its many permutations has been the progressives’ preferred apocalypse, the fear of climate change.
Following this outburst, I can longer bring myself to believe that Will is merely a peddler of low-grade bullshit.  He can only be completely, irreversibly out of his fucking tree.  That last line, admittedly, is Will's bog-standard outrageous lies: the Keystone XL pipeline was campaigned against because it would risk the extinction of several endangered species, and the principle objections to the new extraction techniques are that a) we haven't had time to ensure they're safe for nearby people, and b) they seem to have a nasty habit of poisoning surrounding water supplies.  The discerning reader might also ask why, if the US has two centuries of coal reserves remaining, it really needs a massive oil pipeline from Canada, when Will's children and his childrens' children can play safe and free under the harmless coke clouds belching forth from Middle America until the twenty-third century.

The rest of it, though, is just the ravings of an id that's collapsed under the weight of its own suppressed shame.  Decades of ignoring and misrepresenting his political and philosophical opponents have left Will unable to even comprehend the letters, symbols and sounds that issue forth from the hated hippies. Instead, he's concocted an amazing conspiracy theory in which we're so obsessed with the idea of making life harder for everyone - including ourselves - we've put together the Biggest of all Lies.

Here's my question, though: if we really had forged a massive deception in the fires of Mount Doom ivory towers of the intelligentsia, with the specific aim of hobbling the march of civilisation, why would we choose a scenario entirely at odds with the richest people and countries in the world?  Why not come up with something aimed to strike against the unwashed and downtrodden?  Like, I don't know, the idea that organised labour isn't a necessary counterbalance to management, but a con trick designed to stifle innovation through the application of Big Government?
If in November Republicans capture the Senate... only weakness of Republican will can prevent, for example, the Environmental Protection Agency and the National Labor Relations Board from being unconstrained instruments of presidential decrees. 
See?  That's how you make shit up in order to force other people to live the way you think they should!

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