Friday Ephemera

Elsewhere (81)

Matt Welch on Obama’s fantasy economics: 

Democrats are in denial about the true cost of their ideological commitments. If we taxed Americans enough to cover the cost (or even 90 percent of the cost) of what Democrats consider the minimal level of government, the result would be recession. That should, but won’t, give big-government apologists pause.

Somewhat related: “Tax revenue has been falling despite a sharp increase in the rate.” Despite?  

Jonah Goldberg on imaginary opponents: 

When will [the left] accept that they aren’t all that stands between a wonderful, tolerant America and Jim Crow? I was in the room when, during the Democratic convention, civil-rights hero John Lewis suggested that Republicans wanted to “go back” to the days when black men like him could be beaten in the street by the enforcers of Jim Crow. I thought it an outrageous and disgusting bit of demagoguery. The audience of Democratic delegates cheered in a riot of self-congratulation... To watch MSNBC is to think the hosts see themselves as the official newsletter of the Underground Railroad. 

And Victor Davis Hanson on the ‘progressive’ aristocracy:  

The medieval concept of offsetting your sins through public penance is back in play: The more loudly you talk about helping the proverbial people, the more you are allowed to live quite apart from them without guilt… Hollywood still seeks hundreds of millions in tax breaks unavailable to small businesses without shame because it is so manifestly compassionate. Occupy Wall Street does not camp out in Beverly Hills or Malibu, although the likes of Johnny Depp and Leonardo DiCaprio make more per year than do most Wall Street fat cats… For the overpaid and pampered Hollywood movie star, calling for raising taxes, banning guns, ending global warming, and legalising gay marriage means never having to feel too bad about living on the beach and making, under our capitalist system, more money in a month than do many Americans in a lifetime.

For some, professions of egalitarianism and socialist belly fire are a kind of rhetorical chaff – a way to elevate oneself as More Compassionate Than Thou, while deflecting envy from below. (“Please don’t hate me for being richer than you. Look, over there – they have even more, or almost as much –  let’s all hiss at them!”) Vicarious philanthropy – giving away freely other people’s earnings – is a remarkably effective ruse, so much so it seems to encourage a certain disregard for dissonance, as demonstrated, for example, by the Guardian’s editor Alan Rusbridger in this comical exchange with Piers Morgan. And by the Guardian’s imperious class warrior Polly Toynbee, whose rhetoric was contrasted with her actual lifestyle and was promptly reduced to indignant spluttering on national television. Similar obliviousness is also displayed by the millionaire actor Jeremy Irons, who denounces consumerism and asks, “How many clothes do people need?” All while owning no fewer than seven houses, one of which is a peach-coloured castle. No, you’re not allowed to laugh. Because his wife is also very Green and “deeply socialist.” 

Feel free to add your own links and snippets in the comments.


Ian J

Obama: "We don't have a spending problem… I'm getting tired of hearing you say that."

He's not even funny any more.


Because his wife is also very Green and “deeply socialist.”

I don't think I can afford to be deeply socialist.


The adjective "deeply" signifies a complete surrender of critical judgment and perhaps a warning to Jeremy.


The adjective “deeply” signifies a complete surrender of critical judgment...

Well, the emphasis kind of backfires and rings a little hollow, especially from someone whose extensive property portfolio includes a peachy-pink castle.


imaginary opponents

"The thing is, [the rich] think nothing about killing us," she said. "They think nothing about putting our people in harm's way. They think nothing about lethal working conditions." She cited the fact that not all Chicago schools have air conditioning as evidence that the union's opponents want teachers to work in dangerous conditions.

(Via Instapundit.)

Spiny Norman

With a salary reputed to be in the $450,000 per year range, the jolly Karen Lewis IS the rich, Rafi. What is truly disgusting about her is not her hypocrisy, but that someone could be that appallingly ignorant and yet be the leader of a teachers' union, let alone a school teacher. If she is the "best of the best", what chance do the children of Chicago have?


I hear she's willing to pay a big bounty for some guy named "Solo", though, so there's that...


"It does not appear that Congress and the White House will come to any consensus on how best to solve our fiscal crisis at the federal level. Conservatives and liberals simply have diametrically opposed views on how our fiscal crisis can best be resolved while preserving economic growth. But at the state level, conservative and liberal models of governance are being fully implemented. And it is becoming increasingly clear which of those visions is producing the best results."

the wolf

When Leo isn't posing with cute little polar bears on magazine covers, he's living in a $2.5 million, 4,500+ square foot home. Oh, he also owns the home next door. Maybe he was explaining to the little bear why it had to die. So Leo could entertain.

Sanity Inspector

Type alert: His name is Matt Welch.

Sanity Inspector

“Tax revenue has been falling despite a sharp increase in the rate.” Despite?



Sanity Inspector,

Corrected, thanks.



“Plane Altitude has been falling despite a sharply pulling back on the stick.” Despite?


Peter Risdon

"I don't think I can afford to be deeply socialist."

I can't afford other people being deeply socialist. It never seems to have any negative effects on their wealth.

Spiny Norman


That's because they have supported the correct causes, and made "campaign contributions" (aka legal bribes) to the correct people, to ensure it does not negatively affect their wealth.



Hmm, I wonder whether Jeremy started walking around asking nobody in particular how many clothes a person needs after he made the mistake of asking his deeply socilaist wife how many dresses a woman needs? Much safer, no?

Peter F

David, tried to send this funny link re Cate Blanchett's ditziness, but it bounced....

Peter Forsythe
Hong Kong

PS; love the blog; have it bookmarked....

Lenin's nest egg

Now that the left has achieved wealth and duly lined their own nests (complete with stated justification), any calls by them for enforced poverty and restricted opportunity falls on the likes of you and me. Not on them.

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