I spared you all from the true extent of the horror, but every item -- I mean every last item -- had to be removed from my slacktuary so the abatement guys in hazmat suits could remove the old flooring, which apparently has an infinitesimal amount of asbestos in it. California. Bazooka vs. mosquito. 'Nuff said.
So with my environment all scrambled, it's a little like having alzheimer's, only outside my skull instead of inside.
But I always enjoy revisiting old posts, first, because they are not meant to age. In other words, nothing here is supposed to have an expiration date (except some of the gags). In fact, -- and I probably mentioned this in my very first post -- one of the original purposes -- or at least excuses -- for the blog was to bring to readers whatever it is that is the opposite of news. The "olds"? The stale? The rewordgitated?
No, these don't work, because if one thinks archetypally, the news is almost always old before it's written, just the recycling of a handful of myths and more superficial patterns. To mix a metaphor of Jim Morrison, the journalist simply takes a mask from the ancient gallery and serves it to us for breakfast. Conversely, truth is always fresh, and always provokes intrapsychic adventures beyond the subjective horizon.
I mean, c'mon. "Middle East in Chaos." No. Really? "Muslims Behaving Barbarously." You don't say. "57 Churches Burned So Far, Christians Terrorized." Breaking news from 630!
"Systemic Corruption in Clinton Foundation." What, you mean Clinton and his cronies became wealthy through philanthropy? Is there some other way for liberals to get rich?
"Obamacare in Chaos." Wait. Socialism doesn't work? I thought we won the cold war. Besides, isn't the era of big government over? I guess it depends on the meaning of isn't.
Speaking of which, I'm still waiting for George Gilder's Knowledge and Power to arrive in the mail. From the reviews, it sounds right up our alley. For example, the August 19 National Review sent a tingle up our thigh when it observed that
"it's because the authorities lack knowledge that they use power to try to impose artificial order. This ruins systems that need to adapt and change, and that need information about the real world to do so.... The imposition of control by power instead of knowledge suppresses these streams of information, and the results are not pretty, or even sane" (emphasis mine). In fact, they're pretty insane.
But for the left, politics is about power, which is why they cannot help generating chaos -- and why, conversely, the truth not only sets us free, but is obviously the prerequisite of meaningful freedom (for if there is no truth, then freedom simply equates to nihilism).
In reality, "the capitalist economy is a giant information system that provides feedback and knowledge to entrepreneurs about productive investment and creative opportunity," so "the more the government tries to fine-tune" the channels of information, "the more noise it inserts into the system."
Obamacare, for example, with its 2200 pages of "laws" is a recipe for chaos, a decimation of the order necessary to have a rationally ordered healthcare system. And I place "law" in scare quotes, since the law is whatever Obama wants it to be. Nancy Pelosi promised us that if we passed the bill, we could find out what's in it. Turns out they had to pass the bill so Obama could decide what's in it. Naked, lawless power. That's the left for you.
Yeah, yeah. Breaking news from Genesis 3.
Some people wonder why I have to mix politics and religion. This is one big reason: "In the end, the most important message carried by Knowledge and Power is that capitalism is a profoundly spiritual system. It allows and encourages people to be the best they can be, not only in serving their own interests and exercising their own talents, but in meeting the needs of others."
This dovetails nicely with a review of another book I haven't yet gotten to, Kevin Williamson's The End is Near, in the June 17 NR. The State -- as opposed to the limited government of our Founders -- is not an instrument of truth -- breaking news from 1789! -- but "an instrument of will. It seeks to tell people how to live. Worse, it uses force to do so. Worst of all, its paramount purpose is not answering the question 'What's best for the people?' -- that is at most a secondary consideration -- but 'What is good for the State?'"
And consistent with Gilder's thesis, "The problem with politics is that it does not know how to get less wrong." That wise crack should be posted above every polling booth.
For example, "Other than Social Security, there are very few 1935 vintage products still in use.... Resistance to innovation is part of the deep structure of politics. In that, it is is like any other monopoly. It never goes out of business -- despite flooding the market with dangerous and defective products, mistreating its customers," and engaging in a level of fiscal fraud that dwarfs anything in the private economy. (See Reckless Endangerment for details.)
Why the built-in, systematic stupidity? Because "The people running the State are never sufficiently willing to contemplate that they are the problem." I mean, Obama is about as likely to realize this as Paul Krugman is to seek psychiatric help.
Thus, "if a program dedicated to putting the round pegs of humanity into square holes fails, the bureaucrats running it will conclude that citizens need to be squared off long before it dawns on them that the State should stop treating people like pegs in the first place." But as always, government failure simply becomes the pretext for the next appropriation of more power. Obamacare fails? Then we need single payer!
Bottom line: "Individual liberty yields the iPhone. Politics protects the Post Office."
Huh. I guess this turned into something like a post after all.