Monday, March 30, 2009

Comment on Belmont Club
"Decisionmaking under uncertainty"

There are fundamental differences between conservatives and revolutionaries. I did not say between the right and the left since there are radicals in both camps. A salient feature of radicals is that they behave in consciously conspiratorial ways. Even when in a position of authority and even when engaged in presumptively lawful conduct they tend to express themselves through ways, such as subterfuge, secrecy and small group power struggles, that tie in to their emotional and historical underground links. Conservatives and most Republicans, but not most Libertarians, behave quite differently. Their values express their focus on the relentlessly normative. This may give them an affinity to the values of productive industry but not necessarily to those of politics. The Democrats have been captured by the radicals and have rejected the alternative of a moderately socially progressive heritage that built the party of George Meany and Hubert Humphrey, Scoop Jackson and John (but not Edward) Kennedy. Given that the Democrats are now dominated by radicals it makes sense to use that information when judging Obama. He was indisputably the candidate of the most radical elements and does have a history of associating with frankly revolutionary elements. Humans are not beasts. We have the capacity to use experience, not just our own but others, to predict future events and make plans accordingly. Given these facts it is prudent and sane for someone to expect bad things from Barack Obama and act on that expectation.

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