Sunday, April 19, 2009

Why Statists Always Do the Wrong Thing

"Statists" are those who believe that society, economy and culture flow from the actions of the state, who believe that without the state to manage and organize and regulate and ration, human existence would not be possible. Statism is the viewpoint of the parasite: No parasite could ever conceive that its activity is inessential to the body as a whole, much less deleterious. That idea is simply beyond its ken, like asking someone to imagine the world that will exist when he is no longer in it. Of course there is no such world! The world began the day of my birth and will come screeching to a halt the moment I die! Which will be never!

Because the parasitic viewpoint is so skewed and blinkered, statists are constitutionally incapable of generating the right response when things start to go haywire. (This may also be due to parasitism having caused the breakdown to begin with.) Surely now we must do more!, cry the statists. More of what we do so well: tax and spend, tinker and "experiment" (as the Obama administration is doing, in explicit imitation of FDR's New Deal), forbid and compel, stipulate and decree - then tax and spend some more.

As with all human behavior, the bottom line is self-interest. For instance, statists cannot comprehend the need for individual or national self-defense, and - for obvious reasons - feel very threatened by it. Is a man's own home his castle? Does a man have a right to secure the borders of his own territory? Is a man's own property inalienable? Does a man have a right to the fruit of his own labor? What is this word "own?" wonder the statists, sincerely. What's yours is ours, and what's ours is ours. It's all just lying around here to be taken. What's the problem? Why would you want to keep anybody else out? After all, that's how WE got in ...

The idea that wealth can only be created by human labor is something no statist has ever grasped. For this reason, when wealth seems to be in too short supply, the statist idea of how to increase it is typically parasitic: Take more from the rich! Then print more money! The facts that wealthy societies mean increasing numbers of increasingly wealthy people, and that too much money paradoxically impoverishes all with inflation, are as foreign to statists as the Man in the Moon.

Taxation is literally sacred to statism. Even statists who have no personal intention whatsoever of paying the actual amount of tax they owe feel a shudder of sacrilege coming on when others complain about the tax code. Gloria Steinem famously said that if men got pregnant, abortion would be a sacrament. Likewise the payment of taxes, those beautiful "voluntary contributions" that make statist life so deeply rewarding, is a "rite of Spring" for statists, their Christmas, Easter and Thanksgiving all rolled into one.

Some people are born statists, and others become statists or are recruited to statism. Those who were statists at birth must surely include Bill Clinton and Hillary Rodham. Both of them just knew from an early age that they were going to grow up to be parasites.

Civil Servants in some cases do worthwhile things, and certainly don't think of themselves as parasites; but of course their good deeds are done coercively at the expense of others. Statist beneficence can only be conducted with funds extracted from the labor of persons and businesses by means of various taxes, backed up by the threat of dispossession, imprisonment or worse.

There are two main types of statist: politicians (who are usually lawyers) and financiers (who are often lawyers).

When the financiers screw up the economy too badly, they run to the Treasury Department and become politicians. As soon as profitability has been restored, they run back to the "private sector" and begin dreaming up still more "exotic instruments." Pure capitalism, which exists mostly in theory, does naturally generate cyclical profitability crises; as the system decays under parasitic pressure, these cycles become more frequent, ragged, unpredictable, irrational and extreme.

Can a parasitized state-capitalist economy be saved? "Victory," of course, for the parasite, is Pyrrhic at best. Victory for the parasite means death for the host. If the parasite could be a host, i.e., could be a self-sufficient productive organism, then it would not be a parasite. Predator, parasite and prey: all forms co-exist at all levels, high and low, of life, always have and always will.

1 comment:

stebbylee said...

Interesting query when applied to the Artist.