Friday, 23 June 2017

The responsibility of government: a definition.


A note to remind of the writer's continuing responsibility is offered the reader this month.

Time remains in short supply in these parts as the demands of commerce continue to receive the benefit of first choice.

To this writer's peculiar brand of art meanwhile, is apportioned the leftovers.

C'est la vie.  A man yet endeavors to persevere.

The nonsense topic of economic disruption is subject of the latest diatribe, with news of impending disaster once again gathering like storm clouds on the world's horizons.  All in the name of progress of course, this despite benefits in most cases limited to a tiny group of Silicon Valley billionaires.  For these new age oligarchs, much like their predecessors, seduce the disparate populations of the planet with promises of a democratic future.

Fueled by the power of technology, heartless entrepreneurs possessed by dreams of unlimited power build multinational corporations to maintain their financial position.

A quick review of the latest consumer gadgetry shows the puppet masters at work behind the scenes as internet conglomerates boldly threaten industries built on the sweat of earlier generations now relegated to 'old tech' status.  Entire business models; with the taxicab business but a single apparent example, once identified as 'inefficient' by these moguls, soon discover technology-based and conglomerate-provided replacements proposed for their services touted as not only inevitable but preferable.

Subsequent review of the technology or business model suggested as replacement soon reveals not only a multitude of service inefficiencies ~ mainly created by ignorance ~ but also extraordinary corporate greed, industrial safety standards ignored, and vastly unregulated business practices, all designed to enrich a remote corporate parent.  With what these oligarchs claim publicly as industrial efficiency revealed as little more than private refusal to underwrite the actual expense of doing business in a functional society.

Included among them are inconvenient necessities such as full-time employment, taxes, benefits, or skills training.

While the shareholders of such corporations are enriched by the shedding of these essential costs of doing business, the working-class members of society in most cases are soon left jobless, free only to fend for themselves.

Make no mistake, the Silicon Valley oligarchs driving the internet view the model as the sure path to an ideal society.  For in such a place, the rich are allowed to grow richer via the effort of the poor or disenfranchised while contributing little or nothing to the society enriching them.

With the free press long ago destroyed, its internet based replacement ~ available to all at no charge courtesy of the technology providers that killed it ~ now controls not only the news but also what the consumer perceives as fact.  A technology capable of near universal thought control is thus near perfectly disguised.  The gadget-obsessed consumer meanwhile is so thoroughly entangled by the incessant demands of technology that self-awareness appears relegated to status as but another anachronistic pursuit best left to history.

To paraphrase words attributed to the fellow Barnum once spoken to his circus-owning partner Bailey, no man shall grow poor who relies upon the gullibility of his fellows to earn his daily bread.

In terms as certain as sunshine, the oligarchs of Silicon Valley have perfected the practice to such a degree as to shame the owners of the once popular circus!

            As far as this writer is concerned, more's the pity.

            In post secondary classrooms filled with eager sycophants meanwhile, charlatans disguised as scholars hold court.  Waxing fulsome on theories grounded in pseudo-scientific evaluation of historical information best considered anecdotal if at all these pretenders advise, predict, cajole or otherwise confirm a personal insight into matters as resistant to the scientific method as any so far discovered.

            While in the interim, the rich get richer as the poor increase in number everywhere.

            For the study of economics is not science.  Those who claim it to be are at best charlatans, at worst outright liars.  This fact is most clearly demonstrated by the study of economic activity being fundamentally immune to experimentation.  The so-called study amounts to a review of historical data, followed by concoction and application of explanations promoted ~ though entirely lacking evidentiary provenance ~ to reflect what happened in the previously recorded annals of history.  As corporal reality makes it impossible to reproduce either circumstance, participants or even an environment suitable to experimentation, the practice is shown as little more than nonsense best suited for traffic among fools by charlatans.

            Rest assured dear reader, the maxim holds: only a fool takes advice from a charlatan.

            These twenty-first century flim-flam men, using technology beyond the imagination of the once-famous nineteenth century circus masters, also now routinely opine on the duties, failings and countless obligations of government.  From educational pulpits or corporate boardrooms everywhere the calls for either more or less government economic intervention rings, with primarily the rich, white or otherwise privileged leading a sustained wail.

            These powerful business leaders with the pseudo-scientific support of their tenured hirelings ~ disguised as learned men with University positions in schools teaching economics worldwide ~ contend they know the business of government better than its democratically or otherwise elected practitioners.  In the twenty-first century, they claim government’s first responsibility is not to the people, but to the economy.  By extension, this means creating an environment conducive to the success of corporations should be the focus of government activities, not the well-being of citizens.

            Another word used to describe systems based on those principals is fascism.

            Last time I checked, in much of the western world, we the people long ago chose to live under a system of democracy.

            I must state for the record that as an ignorant person born to an underprivileged class in the democratic west the notions presented here often demonstrate bias either moderately progressive or stubbornly liberal.  In the polarized world in which we live today, that’s enough to cause as much as half the population to disregard my opinions out of hand.  Recognizing this fact, I’m fortunate to be able to turn to a conservative thinker of great renown for reinforcement of the dangers this ‘modern’ school of economic theory represents to our collective style of government and thereby our individual freedom.

            I thus quote the following statement directly encapsulating a learned conservative thinker’s viewpoint on these matters, attributed to the great American conservative author, speaker and educator F. Reid Buckley.

“Moreover, the more powers that are invested in government, and the more powers that are wielded by government, the less well does government discharge its primary responsibilities, which are (1) defense of the commonwealth, (2) protection of the rights of citizens, and (3) support of just order.” – F. Reid Buckley, 1930-2014.

Not even the late Mr. Buckley, a much-respected educator of known conservative philosophy, considered the economy a main concern of government!

What then to consider as appropriate in response to charlatans using technology and education to shape a public opinion designed to enable the fascist agenda?  Where to begin a conversation in support of restoration of the primacy of common-sense to our collective societal agenda?  How to convince a society coerced by information overload their destiny yet remains within individual control?  When to launch such an unrewarding and unpopular effort?  Who to offer information with neither sensational nor prurient appeal?

The writer admits to lacking motivation while a man looks on with scorn.

At some point in the past I trust it was mentioned somewhere that in science, most answers lead only to more questions.  In this way and many more, the scientific method demands a relentless commitment to fact-based understanding.

Unlike the so-called study of ‘economic theory’ which claims to provide definitive answers to all things but only increases the vast gulf between have and have not.

Only one of the methods described above is trustworthy.

I leave it to the reader to judge which it might be.

On the literary front meanwhile, I’m pleased to report copy and line editing complete for my next novel, with only a final proofread necessary before it moves on to formatting.  I look forward to a fall publishing date and to sharing it with you.

Thanks for sharing the blog.

  • TFP
    June 23, 2017