Tuesday, May 17, 2016

I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take this anymore

Sometimes, I feel like I should grab the Bernies and the Trumpsters and shake them to get their attention.  And then I want to tell them, "enough with your pessimism and doomsday sloganeering.  The end is not anywhere near."  If only they understood how hundreds of millions around the world will gladly trade places with the Bernies and Trumpsters who are being hysterical!

Greg Easterbrook writes that somehow optimism has become uncool in the country known for its boundless optimism:
An April Gallup poll found that only 26 percent of Americans call themselves “satisfied” with “the way things are going” in the United States. It’s been this way for a while: January 2004, during the George W. Bush administration, was the last time a majority told Gallup they felt good about the nation’s course.
For a decade now!

"Objectively, the glass looks significantly more than half full," says Easterbrook with a whole bunch of evidence.  He then quotes that rich dude from Omaha:
Recently Warren Buffett said that because of the “negative drumbeat” of politics, “many Americans now believe their children will not live as well as they themselves do. That view is dead wrong: The babies being born in America today are the luckiest crop in history.”
 Exactly!  I complain about many public policy issues, yes, but--as I often comment to students--this is the best time ever and the "good old days" were actually bad old days.  But, somehow, the Bernies don't get it (I have complained enough about the Trumpsters already!) and they are actually mesmerized by a candidate who proudly favors socialism!  Glenn Reynolds has a great line in his op-ed warning the Bernies not to be a sucker for socialism:
Under capitalism, rich people become powerful. But under socialism, powerful people become rich.
Reynolds adds later on:
But at least in America, becoming powerful isn’t the only way to become rich. Under socialism, you’re either powerful, or you’re poor.
He goes on to list some of those socialist experiments, including Venezuela.  In this blog, I have cried enough for Venezuela, and the horror stories keep growing in that rapidly failing state.  The story of the 14-year old described in this essay on how Venezuela is falling apart will make any decent human angry like hell.  That 14-year old, who died because of a shortage of his anti-epilepsy prescription drug, is but one story from Venezuela.

Maybe the angry Bernies should spend a week in Venezuela, and the pissed off Trumpsters should experience daily life in Russia.  That will be quite a reality check on their views of the world.


Ramesh said...

Totally agree. Obviously you are not feeling the Bern.

Why are the young seduced by an old man whose economics is, to put it as mildly as I can, dubious. I can understand this in France. But in the US ?????? Even in the UK, Corbyn is given nowhere near the adulation that the wide eyed Bernie fan club seems to be intoxicated on.

Mike Hoth said...

I've heard the issue of cultural pessimism referred to as an "addiction to outrage", and that makes a great deal of sense to me. There is always a new outrage, always something to be upset about in this country. Donald Trump has built his platform on yelling about all the outrageous things happening to our country (no, not just his nomination) and how he'll do something about these problems, damn it.
Bernie Sanders in no different. He and his followers are outraged at ideas like expensive college, wage disparity and politicians who line their pockets with bank notes. He bounces from topic to topic that are sure to incense liberals on the far left and motivate them. Neither candidate is interested in the facts, they are only interested in the anger.

Sriram Khé said...

At least the French make it all sound great with their fancy language and their awesome accent when they speak English ;) It is crazy that both white men are winning on the basis of support from whites. The whiteness of Trump and Sanders people is so openly talked about that I am shocked that it doesn't shock people--especially the liberal whites!
Not only the two candidates but even their fanatical fans are seemingly uninterested in facts :( It is almost as if I am at a faculty meeting ;)

Anne in Salem said...

A cynic would say that Sanders' appeal is based on his proposed largesse. Free college, higher wages, medical for all, etc., etc. Sounds lovely! I know no Sanders fans directly, but my kids do. These fans do not think through the next step - if college is free or medical care is insured by the government, how is the government going to pay for it? They hear free college, which is far more appealing than $50,000 of student loans that will take 20 years to pay off. They don't see the business closures when business taxes are increased. They don't see their parents moving out of the family home because their income taxes are too high. They hear free, free, free and gobble it up.

Sriram Khé said...

Oh, one doesn't need to be a cynic on that one ... Bernie is being truthful--he has always admitted to being a Socialist, and that political philosophy does translate to free stuff for everybody. I can understand its appeal to the youth--after all, I was one heck of a commie sympathizer when I was in my teens. But, I don't understand how college-educated white liberal adults so passionately believe that the free stuff is possible ...

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