The Single Bullet That Killed 16 Million


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The Single Bullet That Killed 16 Million

By Edward Hudgins

June 27, 2014 – A century ago, on June 28, 1914, Serbian nationalist Gavrilo Princip shot and killed Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir to the emperorship of Austria-Hungary, along with his wife, on their visit to Sarajevo.

In retaliation, Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia. Serbia’s ally Russia declared war on Austria-Hungary. Austria-Hungary’s ally Germany declared war both on Russia and Russia’s ally France. France’s ally Britain declared war on Germany and Austria-Hungary. By the time it was all over, Italy, the Ottoman Empire, Japan, and the USA were notably involved.

World War I led to 16 million military and civilian deaths, plus nearly 20 million wounded. And the misery and horror of that war resulted in another casualty: confidence in the Enlightenment enterprise and human progress.

Enlightenment Europe

In the late seventeenth century Isaac Newton’s discovery of the laws of universal gravitation dramatically demonstrated the power of the human mind. Understanding of the world and the universe—what we call modern science—became a central Enlightenment goal.

At the same time, the struggle for Parliamentary supremacy in England led John Locke to pen his powerful treatise on individual liberty. Creating governments limited to protecting life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness also became a central Enlightenment goal, which culminated in the creation of United States.

Enlightenment values were not limited to Britain or America. They were universal and created a European-wide culture of individualism, freedom, and reason.

Collectivist anti-Enlightenment

But Enlightenment thinkers and activists not only had to fight entrenched oligarchs and rigid religious dogma. Starting with Jean-Jacques Rousseau, a school of thought—if thought it could be called—arose that opposed individualism with the good of “society,” or the group, and rejected reason in favor of emotion and instinct.

The French Revolution starting in 1789 saw Enlightenment ideas losing ground to reactionary and collectivist forces. The result was the Terror and the guillotine, dictatorship and a new monarchy, and the carnage of the Napoleonic wars--the first great modern global conflict, which ended in 1815 at Waterloo.

In the century that followed Europe suffered only short regional conflicts, most relating to the unification of Italy and of Germany. The Industrial Revolution was creating prosperity. Governments were granting citizens rights to political participation and were recognizing their civil liberties. By the early twentieth century, continued progress seemed inevitable.

Pernicious nationalism

But the pernicious collectivist ideology combined with a major European cultural defect: nationalism. This form of collectivism meant more than just an appreciation for the aesthetic achievements—art, music, literature—of the individuals in one’s ethnic group. It meant putting one’s group or one’s country, right or wrong, ahead of universal values and principles. Kill for King or Kaiser!

There’s an irony in the fact that poor Franz Ferdinand wanted to recreate Austria-Hungary as a federation in which the minority groups—that were always either dominated by Viennese elites or at one another’s throats—would have autonomy similar to that enjoyed by the American states. If only Princip had waited a while.

Unfortunately, the volatile combination of nationalism, an interlocking treaty system, and the Britain-Germany imperial rivalry only required a spark like the Sarajevo assassination to set off a global conflagration.

Collectivism vs. collectivism

After World War I, individualism and “selfishness” got much of the blame for the conflict. And science was no longer associated only with progress. It had created machine guns, tanks, and poison gas, and made possible a fearful slaughter.

Idealists created the League of Nations to prevent such wars in the future. But they tried to cure the problem of nationalism with more nationalism, simply accentuating the problem. Indeed, Hitler used the principle of self-determination of peoples as an excuse to unify all Germans into one Reich by force. His form of collectivism also entailed enslaving and wiping out “inferior” races.

The catastrophe of World War II was followed by a Cold War, which saw the Soviet Union asserting another form of collectivism, pitting one economic “class” against another. Western Europe opposed the brutal Soviet kill-the-rich socialism with a kinder, gentler, loot-the-rich democratic socialism. The Soviet Union with its communist empire collapsed in 1991, and Western European democratic socialism is going through a similar disintegration in slow motion.

Still recovering from the Great War

Today, Enlightenment values are making a comeback. The communications and information revolutions, and the application of new technologies in medicine, transportation, and other fields, again demonstrate the power of the human mind and the benefits it confers.

Furthermore, many of the new entrepreneurs understand that it is they as individual visionaries who are transforming the world. And while their achievements benefit everyone, they strive because they love their work and they love to achieve. They pursue happiness. They hold Enlightenment values—though in many cases their politics still need to catch up.

The world is still digging out from the consequences of that single bullet a century ago, which led to the deaths of millions. Putting our country and the world back on the path to liberty and prosperity will require a recommitment to the Enlightenment values that created all the best in the modern world.

---

Hudgins is director of advocacy and a senior scholar at The Atlas Society.

For further information:

Edward Hudgins, “D-Day and Enlightenment Values.” June 6, 2014.

*Marsha Enright, “Education for a New Enlightenment.” Winter 2010.

*David Mayer, “Completing the American Revolution.” Spring, 2009.

*David Kelley, “The Fourth Revolution.” Spring 2009.

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According to the ongoing Gallup poll of economic optimism, the most optimistic of Americans about their current financial plight and about their future don’t live in a state at all. They live in the District of Columbia. In this age of socialism, the result should surprise nobody. Gallup conducted over 170,000 interviews with at least 500 residents in each state over the period of January through December 2013 ... In one of the most lamentable findings of the study, the District of Columbia itself was the one and only entity among the 50 states and D.C. to score a positive optimistic rating about the American economy. [Jeff David] In 2012, Democrats gained an advantage in party affiliation among the American public. [Gallup]

Any more "enlightened" and we'll be communists -- especially Silicon Valley :laugh:

Screen-Shot-2012-11-06-at-8.54.45-PM.png

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Thanks, Ed! My quibbles are below, but I agree 100% with the obvious truth that the fundamental flaw was the attachment of nationalism to liberalism in the 19th century: the cases were Poland, Italy, Romania, and of course Hungary as the paradigm in 1848.



Allow me to suggest "The Rising National Individualism," by Herbert Adolphus Miller. The American Journal of Sociology, Vol. 19, No. 5 (Mar., 1914), pp. 592-605 . By "national individualism" the author means national socialism. In 1914, the author identified increased nationalism pulling apart Europe (especially Eastern Europe's Austrian Empire). He was wrong about the immediate war: the Slavs within the Austrian Empire did not refuse to fight against Russia. However, he was sadly very correct in the post-war era of fascism. Romania was a kingdom; Jugoslavia was a kingdom; Albania, Greece, Bulgaria, all were kingdoms. (Greece became a fascist dictatorship on the eve of the Italian invasion.)



In a sense, this war lasted from 1912 to 1999. It was a European civil war. The actual assassination of Franz Ferdinand was a surprise in that the immediate conflict was between Europe and the Ottoman Empire. (The Balkan War of 1912-1913.) That the Ottoman Empire would ally with Austria was also unexpected but clear in 20-20 hindsight: they both hated Balkan nationalisms. And it continued through the Kosovo War of the Clinton Administration.



Moreover, the consequences must include Palestine and Israel. "Lawrence of Arabia" was a sideshow then but was the center ring for many years. Today's headlines from Iraq are no less a result of World War One, with the British receiving "mandates" in what was the Ottoman Empire: Iraq, Palestine, Arabia.



My quibbles.



1. It is not clear that Franz Ferdinand would have empowered an array of local kingdoms of Slovaks, Slovenes, Hungarians, Poles, etc., etc., within his empire. As the crown prince of Austria, he was the king of Hungary, but he was not actually Hungarian, of course. It was a pattern then that each new czar, each new pope was supposed to be more liberal than the last and bring in the much-needed reforms. It never happened.



2. The alliances did indeed bring a world war, however, it is important to realize that these were mutually contradictory secret alliances. It took about a month to play out. Opinion was that family ties would put England, Germany, and Russia on the same side against France, Italy, and Austria. Remember that Bismarck kicked Austria out of the German Confederation. It was not clear from public manifestations that Austria and Germany would be on the same side. It is just that Austria and Italy had more enmity. (I lost a great uncle in that, a Hungarian in the Austrian army.) The cascading declarations of war were a surprise to everyone.



3. Everyone expected a quick end. Given the Crimean War, the Seven Weeks' War, the Franco-Prussian War, no one saw civilization grinding down to starvation, except perhaps H. G. Wells.



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Wolf, thanks for the numbers. You have to ask what makes a firm "influential." I mean, really, the world could get along without Netflix. I suspect - or maybe I only hope - that firms such as Cypress Semiconductor are only not on the Pop Chart, but remain essential and consequential. Those firms cited are overpopulated with people who think that "work" means razorboarding through the office and eating gourmet food while gossiping with your friends. See the Mark Zuckerberg video here:

These Googlers and Netflickerers are mostly young, i.e., idiots. Give them time.

"Engines of Creation" on my blog here.

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Ed's single bullet theory has multiple problems. Only 9 million of 60 million combatants were killed.

----------

The reaction [to Franz Ferdinand's murder] among the people in Austria was mild, almost indifferent. As historian Zbyněk Zeman later wrote, "the event almost failed to make any impression whatsoever. On Sunday and Monday [June 28 and 29], the crowds in Vienna listened to music and drank wine, as if nothing had happened."

However, in Sarajevo itself, Austrian authorities encouraged violence against the Serb residents, which resulted in the Anti-Serb riots of Sarajevo, in which Croats and Bosnian Muslims killed two ethnic Serbs and damaged numerous Serb-owned buildings. The events have been described as having the characteristics of a pogrom. Writer Ivo Andrić referred to the violence as the "Sarajevo frenzy of hate." Violent actions against ethnic Serbs were organized not only in Sarajevo, but also in many other large Austro-Hungarian cities in modern-day Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina. Austro-Hungarian authorities in Bosnia and Herzegovina imprisoned and extradited approximately 5,500 prominent Serbs, thousands of whom died in prison. 460 Serbs were sentenced to death and a predominantly Muslim special militia known as the Schutzkorps was established and carried out the persecution of Serbs.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_War_I#Political_and_military_alliances

Many Europeans were already on their summer holidays or about to start. Their governments had other things to worry about. Russia was dealing with a series of increasingly militant strikes; the British feared civil war over the thorny question of Irish home rule; and the French were preoccupied with a complex scandal involving adultery and possibly treason on the part of one its leading politicians. The German Kaiser was sad at the loss of a friend but not particularly concerned that there would be serious repercussions. The French president, who heard the news at a race track outside Paris, noted that most of his guests were of the same opinion.

In Austria-Hungary, the Archduke had not been much loved. He was demanding, frequently bad tempered and authoritarian. His reputed anti-Semitic and anti-Hungarian prejudices did not endear him to many of his future subjects...

...a chain of events that led Europe in five weeks from peace to a general war – a war whose scale and destructiveness few had imagined possible – was the result of what those in power chose to do next. There had been much more dangerous crises recently in the Balkans; two wars among its nations, one in 1912 and the second a year later, had threatened to drag the great powers into a wider conflict. Yet those had been settled by international agreement.

What made it different this time was that the hawks in the Austria-Hungary capital of Vienna – and they included the chief of the army – seized on the chance to deal once and for all with Serbia, even at the risk of a general war. They did not have firm evidence that the Serbian government was complicit in the assassination, but they felt they had enough to go on. European public opinion was likely to be on their side, especially in the immediate aftermath of the deaths. They decided to present an ultimatum to Serbia that, if accepted, would bring Serbia under Austria-Hungary’s control and, if refused, provide the pretext to attack.

The danger was that the war might rapidly become more than a local one; that Russia might well intervene to support Serbia. In recent years, the Russians had made much of their little Slavic brother. Their interest was more than mere sentiment, though; the long-term goal was to gain control of the crucial strait from the Black Sea to the Mediterranean through which some 40 per cent of Russia’s exports flowed...

On July 6, just over a week after the assassination, the German government took the step that brought a European war much closer. It gave Austria-Hungary what came to be known as the “blank cheque” – it would support its ally, come what may. But if Germany found itself at war with Russia, it would also have to attack Russia’s ally France, which might in turn bring in Britain on the side of the French. The previous decade’s alliances and treaties, which had effectively divided Europe into two armed camps, helped to propel the continent toward the brink.

Secure in the backing of its ally, Austria-Hungary prepared an ultimatum to Serbia. It was designed to be unacceptable. The Austrian ambassador in Belgrade delivered it on July 23 and demanded a reply within 48 hours. The Serbian government struggled in vain to come up with an acceptable response. On July 28, Austria-Hungary declared war. Two days later, Russia announced that it would mobilize its armies against both Austria-Hungary and Germany. Germany followed by a declaration of war on Russia on Aug. 1 and on France on Aug. 3. The following day German troops violated Belgian neutrality on their way to attack France and that helped to tip British opinion in favour of intervention.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/world/how-the-archdukes-assassination-came-close-to-being-just-another-killing/article19379097/?page=all

Austria invaded and fought the Serbian army at the Battle of Cer and Battle of Kolubara beginning on 12 August. Over the next two weeks, Austrian attacks were thrown back with heavy losses, which marked the first major Allied victories of the war and dashed Austro-Hungarian hopes of a swift victory. As a result, Austria had to keep sizable forces on the Serbian front, weakening its efforts against Russia. Serbia's defeat of the Austro-Hungarian invasion of 1914 counts among the major upset victories of the last century.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_War_I#Political_and_military_alliances

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You a can read the Austrian ultimatum to Serbia here:

http://www.firstworldwar.com/source/austrianultimatum.htm

Again, before we rush headlong like Great Powers, I do accept Ed's major thesis: the root of the problem was nationalism. And deeper, it was collectivism, altruism, and mysticism that led to World War I, as to all wars, perhaps. Read about the Pastry War of 1838-1839.

Suppose that the assassination had been perceived as a dispute between individuals. Gavrilo Princip shot Mr. and Mrs. Franz F. Hapsburg. What should be done? (Just because they - he especially - were not "liked" does not alter the crime.)

Following the leads provided by Wolf and making tracks of my own, this was a tangled mess before it began. Europe was in a bad way. I suggested before that the "problem" was really America: America tapped Europe's brains, leaving a continent of idiots. Millions and millions of more or less independent and individualist people came here, leaving behind those who were comfortable with the old ways.

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Following the leads provided by Wolf and making tracks of my own, this was a tangled mess before it began. Europe was in a bad way. I suggested before that the "problem" was really America: America tapped Europe's brains, leaving a continent of idiots. Millions and millions of more or less independent and individualist people came here, leaving behind those who were comfortable with the old ways.

Aw come on! The Brain Drain was voluntary. And you over rate America. America produced Woodrow Wilson one of the major jack asses of all time.

Ba'al Chatzaf

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I find it hard to accept that "After World War I, individualism and 'selfishness' got much of the blame for the conflict."

A nation going to war passionately believes in two things: the essential justice of its own cause, and that God is on the side of the Right. At the popular level, the British illusion of being ‘the agent of a divine power’ was sustained through comparison of the conflict with a Holy War, which image ... helped establish the maleficent Antichrist character of Germany and its Kaiser. [Nosheen Khan]

Reaction to WWI was a flowering of flappers, the Jazz Age, radio, "normalcy" and prosperity.

French speakers called it the "années folles" ("Crazy Years"), emphasizing the era's social, artistic, and cultural dynamism ... Economically, the era saw the large-scale diffusion and use of automobiles, telephones, motion pictures and electricity, unprecedented industrial growth, accelerated consumer demand and aspirations, and significant changes in lifestyle and culture. The media focused on celebrities, especially sports heroes and movie stars, as cities rooted for their home teams and filled the new palatial cinemas and gigantic stadiums. [Wikipedia]

Trying to gather all the threads of an imaginary world zeitgeist after World War I is impossible. As Bagehot said in a slightly different context, "the rule which is most simple is not always the rule which is most to be relied upon." The Roaring Twenties were a lot of things mashed together, some highly atomistic and individual, others an extension and fruition of the Progressive Era and more technocratic government.

A month after the Armistice, the American Economic Association and the American Statistical Association met jointly in Richmond, Virginia. The presidential addresses were delivered by men in the forefront of the exciting new world of government planning, aided by social science, that seemed to loom ahead. In his address to the American Statistical Association, Wesley Clair Mitchell proclaimed that the war had "led to the use of statistics, not only as a record of what had happened, but also as a vital factor in planning what should be done." As he had said in his final lecture in Columbia University the previous spring, the war had shown that when the community desires to attain a great goal "then within a short period far-reaching social changes can be achieved."

"The need for scientific planning of social change," he added, "has never been greater, the chance of making those changes in an intelligent fashion has never been so good." The peace will bring new problems, he opined, but "it seems impossible" that the various countries will "attempt to solve them without utilizing the same sort of centralized directing now employed to kill their enemies abroad for the new purpose of reconstructing their own life at home."

[Murray Rothbard, World War I As Fulfillment]

Religion gained new strength after WWI, with tent revivals and speaking in tongues ...

The 30 revivals Sister Aimee conducted from mid-1919 until mid-1922 had a mass appeal unequaled by any touring phenomenon of theater or politics in American history. Neither Houdini nor Teddy Roosevelt had such an audience, nor P.T. Barnum. Lasting from one to four weeks, these meetings invariably overflowed armories, opera houses, and convention halls rented to hold them. Aimee's voice created an excitement in the crowd bordering on hysteria ... McPherson's Pentecostal preaching, speaking in tongues and healing services were looked on by the more traditional churches as somewhat unorthodox, but the ministers of the Methodist, United Brethren and Christian Missionary Alliance churches welcomed her coming and volunteered help. [Roz Young]

... joined in spirit by some surprisingly strange bedfellows:

If they are taught that there is no almighty and all just God, no divine world order, and no future life, then they will feel exempt from all obligation to follow the rules of culture. Uninhibited and free from fear, everybody will follow his asocial, egoistic instincts ... Chaos, which we have banished through thousands of years of the work of civilization, will begin again. [sigmund Freud, The Future of An Illusion, 1928]

Certainly, we'd like to believe that the United States is somehow exceptional today, or was then. It's a self-flattering Rotarian myth to congratulate ourselves and see salvation in Ed's simplistic faith. The truth of the matter is geography. We were spared Europe's fate by the Atlantic Ocean and, instead, made ourselves into asses of a much cruder variety, shunning Objectivism for entitlement blather and adoration of empty-headed "rock star" personalities.

"Barack was only a muslim during his formative years when he was growing up in a muslim country

in a muslim school with a muslim step-father after being named by his muslim father." [Zero Hedge]

funeral-selfie-goes-viral.jpg

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Michael – Thanks for your kind words. And I actually don’t quibble with your quibbles. In a longer piece I might have made similar points. But it is interested that the Archduke at least toyed with the idea of how a federated Austria-Hungary might work. (For those interested in the period, read Barbara Tuckman’s “The Guns of August.”)

And echoing a point I made on SOLO, I note that Edmund Burke and conservatives supported class, religion, and other traditional institutions in part as barriers to the sort of abuses attendant to the French Revolution. Such conservatives were not for all-powerful monarchies; they most of all feared all-powerful mob rule. The American Constitution, with separation of powers and checks and balances, was a manifestation of classical liberal ideas combined with sound conservative insights.

On your point about the best people coming to America, I agree but with some explanation. I wrote in What Is an American? that my grandfather, a poor, landless peasant from rural Italy in the early 20th century, manifested the values and spirit that so many immigrants brought to this country: 1) He wanted the best life for himself and his family; 2) he took action toward his goal rather than just sitting on his butt and complaining; 3) he had to use his wits and his mind—even without much formal education—to figure out how to get to America and to make enough money to bring the family over (a goal he met in 1930); and 4) he realized that going to America involved risks of failure compared to staying put, but that staying put almost guaranteed a life of hopeless poverty. These were the values of so many who left Europe and contributed to the American culture as well as the economy.

This is also why I see hope in the new entrepreneurs in this country who are “individual visionaries who are transforming the world,” who ”strive because they love their work” who “hold Enlightenment values—though in many cases their politics still need to catch up.” In recent talks, I say they have the values of a Howard Roark but still need the politics of a John Galt.

Ray Kurzweil, of “singularity” fame, tells how reading Tom Swift books as a youngest showed him that “the right idea had the power to overcome a seemingly overwhelming challenge” and that in all cases “we can find that idea.” He described the experience of holding an actual da Vinci manuscript as almost like touching “the work of God himself. This, then, was the religion that I was raised with: veneration for human capacity and the power of ideas.”

Such values are crucial to the restoration of freedom in this country. Further, outreach to these folks has an added potential benefit. Millennials are very cynical about politics and most other American institutions; 50% are political independents compared to only 37 % of baby boomers. But 74% of first-year college millennials rate begin financially very well off as a top life goal, compared to only 45% of boomers at that age. And millennials love new technology. In other words, they want to be the next Zuckerberg.

So it is through the new entrepreneurs and such young people that we might have a path to John Galt!

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They'll never get "the politics of John Galt." They'll get welfare. Because of taxes and handouts it's not worth it for the poor to work very much and spend decades fighting their way into the lower middle class only to end up none the better materially and financially well off for all that. Self respect, of course, goes into the crapper.

--Brant

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Wolf, there were a plethora of memes and movements that exploded post WWI.

This was also the Dewey educational cancer that was being introduced.

The Suffragette movement. Even the Scopes trial was in 1925.

Sacco and Vanzetti trial was in 1921 and they were executed in 1927.

Eugenics was running behind the scenes in law, economics and government.

I believe another key force that was running in America was the concept of propaganda and persuasion via propaganda/marketing that Edward Bernay developed.

It begins with him working, as a young man, for Woodrow Wilson. He was part of the group that crafted the line, "Making the world safe for democracy."

How brilliant was that?

I'll tell you. For one, it helped sell Wilson's cause to Americans, to get them sold on entering World War I.

(If you remember, we were a bit late on that game.)

For two, it also helped sell Wilson's agenda for forming the League of Nations. Big stuff, that was.

But here's the real thing about all that.

See, this guy I'm about to tell you about, he got to travel with Wilson's entourage to Paris, just after the war.

And he was shocked by the reception.

Crowds poured into the Paris streets. But what astonished this young man at the time was not just the quantity of support, but the amazing fact that these people... millions of them, and thousands of miles from Washington... were eagerly repeating back that phrase.

"Making the world safe for democracy."

It stunned young Edward Bernays, the man we're talking about. Stunned him in such a way that inspired him to become one of America's most powerful icons in the history of marketing.

http://www.amazon.com/Propaganda-Edward-Bernays/dp/0970312598

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"The American Constitution, with separation of powers and checks and balances, was a

manifestation of classical liberal ideas combined with sound conservative insights."

Uh-huh.

Every Fourth of July, my fellow countrymen celebrate the mistaken notion that the United States was conceived in liberty. This reveals how little our constitutional history is studied. The U.S. Constitution was not conceived at all — it was a bastard product of compromise and contentious debate, winning ratification by a slim margin among the 20 percent of colonial population who were eligible to vote for assemblies of state politicians who narrowly approved it: Pennsylvania 46-23, Virginia 89-79, New York 30-27. [CGIGG]

Whether slavery was to be regulated under the new Constitution was a matter of such intense conflict between the North and South that several Southern states refused to join the Union if slavery were not to be allowed ... Of the 25 delegates who owned slaves, 16 depended on slave labor to run the plantations or other businesses that formed the mainstay of their income. [Wikipedia]

Did we achieve the central goal of the Founding Fathers? -- No. The Constitution's famous compromise plunged us into the Civil War, at a cost of nearly a million lives and five times the G.N.P. in 1860. Instead of reducing the need for a standing peacetime army, the United States spawned a vast military-industrial complex unmatched by any other nation in history. [Laissez Faire Law]

Against the protests of Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and Attorney General Edmund Randolph, Hamilton produced what has now become the classic statement for implied powers ... it was impossible to define all the means which it should use, because it was impossible for the founders to anticipate all future exigencies. Hamilton noted that the "general welfare clause" and the "necessary and proper clause" gave elasticity to the constitution. [Wikipedia]

WASHINGTON – The Environmental Protection Agency will spend more than $1 million on hotel accommodations for an “Environmental Justice” conference this fall. The agency posted its intention to contract with the Renaissance Arlington Local Capital View Hotel for its upcoming public meeting, for which it will need to book 195 rooms for 24 days. [Fox News]

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I just got back from DC (and Arlington)--the hotels are stuffed. One of the world's most prosperous metro areas.

Most of the burials at the Arlington National Cemetery are men who fought if not died in wars made possible by the adoption of the US Constitution and Hamilton's "Implied Powers."

One big idiot--the President--is exponentially worse than 50 little idiots--the Govenors--combined.

The good Presidents didn't involve us in wars. The great Presidents did. This means Americans are generally idiots, letting their naive, ignorant, brainwashed children go off and fight those things. Why not? They previously gave them up to the state--to pubic education.

--Brant

but just let the dog-catcher try to take their dogs!

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Brant - You say that new entrepreneurs will "never get 'the politics of John Galt'" I suggest there are two options:

1) Declare on a discussion thread where few will likely read your words the situation is hopeless.

2) Get out there and engage with new entrepreneurs. Meet with them. Listen to them. Discover what their thinking is, where they are right and what their mistakes are. Build on the beliefs and values about which they are right. Recognize that "they" are not a monolithic group. Identify the one's whose political thinking is more freedom-oriented or who might change their minds. Have the good ones speak at your conferences. Reason with them. Advocate. Make your case. And understand that at any time in history you could that this or that "group" will never change, and then watch as some do.

I'm busy with option number two and leave those here pursuing with option number one to wallow in futility. Let the black clouds gather over your heads. But beware of the light that might break through!

And remember:

“Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't be trapped by dogma—which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.” -- Steve Jobs

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Brant - You say that new entrepreneurs will "never get 'the politics of John Galt'" I suggest there are two options:

1) Declare on a discussion thread where few will likely read your words the situation is hopeless.

2) Get out there and engage with new entrepreneurs. Meet with them. Listen to them. Discover what their thinking is, where they are right and what their mistakes are. Build on the beliefs and values about which they are right. Recognize that "they" are not a monolithic group. Identify the one's whose political thinking is more freedom-oriented or who might change their minds. Have the good ones speak at your conferences. Reason with them. Advocate. Make your case. And understand that at any time in history you could that this or that "group" will never change, and then watch as some do.

I'm busy with option number two and leave those here pursuing with option number one to wallow in futility. Let the black clouds gather over your heads. But beware of the light that might break through!

And remember:

“Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't be trapped by dogma—which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.” -- Steve Jobs

I seem to have created some confusion. I should have said that while most of the "new entrepeneurs" might get "the politics of John Galt," most of the new immigrants aren't going to be new entrepeneurs. This country will suck it right out of them by taking care of them in all the wrong ways. I'm not worried about those who are entrepeneurs, new or old; their future is bright.

--Brant

my bag

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... have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.” -- Steve Jobs


Steve Jobs was an ardent Democrat, with Al Gore on his board at Apple. [Morton Report]

CUPERTINO, California—March 19, 2003—Apple today announced that Albert Gore Jr. has joined the Company’s Board of Directors. “Al brings an incredible wealth of knowledge and wisdom from having helped run the largest organization in the world—the United States government,” said Steve Jobs, Apple's CEO. “Al is going to be a terrific Director and we’re excited and honored that he has chosen Apple as his first private sector board to serve on.”

WASHINGTON – Apple Inc. has used a complex web of offshore entities, including three foreign subsidiaries the company claims are not tax resident in any nation, to avoid paying billions of dollars in U.S. income taxes. Apple established at the apex of its offshore network an offshore holding company that it says is not tax resident in any nation. That subsidiary, Apple Operations International, has no employees and no physical presence, but keeps its bank accounts and records in the United States. A second Irish subsidiary claiming not to be a tax resident anywhere is Apple Sales International which, from 2009 to 2012, had sales revenue totaling $74 billion. The company appears to have paid taxes on only a tiny fraction of that income, resulting, for example, in an effective 2011 tax rate of only five hundreds of one percent. In addition to creating non-tax resident affiliates, Apple Inc. has utilized U.S. tax loopholes to avoid U.S. taxes on $44 billion in otherwise taxable offshore income over the past four years. A third subsidiary, Apple Operations Europe, also has no tax residency, according to Apple. [u.S Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations]
After only one generation, all the Apple manufacturing jobs in America disappeared, as the work of building and assembling the machines was turned over to laborers in sweatshops in China and other countries. [What Went Wrong.com]
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Why not? Al Gore invented the internet, didn't he?

Ba'al Chatzaf

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Brant - Clarification noted. Back to the battle!

I'm afraid I found out as an idea man that mine is more of an historical occupation of little forward-going value. Even Ayn Rand seeing today's future 60 years ago was looking backwards from that future without changing it save in the lives of individuals, not the government and society they lived under and in respectively. She and her "Collective" ginned up their Atlas Shrugged expectations so highly they needed a Nathaniel Branden to create something of a society within society to vitiate the real-world psychological impact on their ardent cohorts and themselves, only to have that artificial construct blow up in their faces for all the lies, implicit and explicit, it was based on. Philosophy is only one part of the complicated human dynamic going forward as things generally get better for people world-wide. There is so much inertia involved in the lives of countries it's best not to embrace your country, but transcend it literally and in your head, Internationally Manning your way through a dynamic life--if you want a dynamic life.

Only conservatives have the gravitas needed to fight major statist trends in the economy. The liberals sold out the fight for freedom of speech and became "progressives." There is little gravitas in constructive ideas and a lot in destructive ones like the still major force, now only cultural, not intellectual, of Marxism. Marxism has become so sublimated I suspect most Marxists, who are most found in academia, don't even know they are Marxists, not using said nomeclature or desiring education or logical thinking exposing their context and that context to objective evaluation as it's covered in failure and blood.

I submit, Ed, that you are occupying the conservative end of the Objectivist spectrum. A much more durable context than the one created by Rand and Branden in the 1960s. At least you don't seem to have embraced the neo-conism of the Ayn Rand Institute with Leonard Peikoff famously war-foaming at the mouth. (I hope I didn't miss something about that.)

--Brant

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Only conservatives have the gravitas needed to fight major statist trends in the economy. The liberals sold out the fight for freedom of speech and became "progressives."

The progressive movement or tendency in American politics goes back at least as far as William Jennings Bryant.

Ba'al Chatzaf

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Only conservatives have the gravitas needed to fight major statist trends in the economy. The liberals sold out the fight for freedom of speech and became "progressives."

The progressive movement or tendency in American politics goes back at least as far as William Jennings Bryant.

Ba'al Chatzaf

Yes, and had a lot to getting the US into WWI.

--Brant

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You a can read the Austrian ultimatum to Serbia here:

http://www.firstworldwar.com/source/austrianultimatum.htm

Again, before we rush headlong like Great Powers, I do accept Ed's major thesis: the root of the problem was nationalism. And deeper, it was collectivism, altruism, and mysticism that led to World War I, as to all wars, perhaps. Read about the Pastry War of 1838-1839.

Suppose that the assassination had been perceived as a dispute between individuals. Gavrilo Princip shot Mr. and Mrs. Franz F. Hapsburg. What should be done? (Just because they - he especially - were not "liked" does not alter the crime.)

Following the leads provided by Wolf and making tracks of my own, this was a tangled mess before it began. Europe was in a bad way. I suggested before that the "problem" was really America: America tapped Europe's brains, leaving a continent of idiots. Millions and millions of more or less independent and individualist people came here, leaving behind those who were comfortable with the old ways.

I don't think the root of the problem was nationalism, and it isn't a good idea to treat the assassination as an ordinary crime. Consider things from the viewpoint of the Austro-Hungarian Emperor. Some filthy foreign commoner just murdered your son and heir in broad daylight in a country known for its official criticism of your regime and the whole world knows it. Who will be your heir now, and what do people think of him? Could his accession create a succession crisis leading to civil war, threatening the stability of your federation? What will the rest of the nobility think if you extend justice to the lowborn scum who just murdered the second most important person in the Empire? Furthermore, how could you justify yourself to them when you turn down an excellent opportunity to crush Serbia and bring it under the control of your regime?

The trouble is that the assassination of a prince has such wide-reaching consequences for imperial politics that it may as well be an act of war. If you try to treat the murder as an ordinary crime, your dynasty will appear weak and in decline. Which is not at all a good thing when you have like a million cousins with claims to your throne and a growing number of people who would want to replace you with them.

Thus, I think one of the most important causes of the war was the existence of the Austro-Hungarian empire itself. Its feudal-like institutions tied The Emperor's hands in such a way that any response other than a declaration of war would be unthinkable.

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Thus, I think one of the most important causes of the war was the existence of the Austro-Hungarian empire itself. Its feudal-like institutions tied The Emperor's hands in such a way that any response other than a declaration of war would be unthinkable.

The Austro-Hungarian empire was absurd. It was like a Romberg play of the Student Prince but with guns, cannons and flame throwers added. And that Gimp Kaiser Wilhelm was no help. He was pissed off that his grandma Queen Victoria loved Albert but she still like the Brits better. There was not a single grownup in a position of power and rule at this time. The Great War was a grand bloody farce and it was as inevitable, given the state of Europe, as the sun rise.

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