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Monday, December 22, 2008

Junior Asks Daddy a Question and Chavez Steals a Mall

While reading these two articles, it struck me that they represent the essence of current events in a rather unique way. Junior Asks Daddy, Where Do Bailouts Come From is a brilliant commentary by Caroline Baum in which she imagines two parents explaining the auto bailouts to their young son. Quoting Baum:

“Mrs. Adams talks about fairness a lot in school,” Junior said. “She says it’s not fair for some people to be very rich and others to be very poor, that the government should do something about it."

“That’s right, son,” Dad said. “The rich should pay more in taxes to reduce the gap between rich and poor, something they call income inequality.”

“You mean, someone should punish them for being rich? That would be like Coach putting me on the bench after hitting that grand-slam home run in the bottom of the fifth in the Little League championships. Why would Coach Perkins want to do that?”

Indeed, why? Unfortunately, the other article is not imaginary. It discusses Chavez's expropriation of a shopping mall in Venezuela:

"How are we going to create socialism turning over vital public spaces to Sambil?" said Chavez, who has nationalized Venezuela's largest phone company, electric utilities and oil fields.

The president also has urged Venezuelans to shed their materialism and their taste for designer clothes, sport utility vehicles, Scotch whisky and plastic surgery.

Chavez often urges Venezuelans to rethink their values, and the timing of his announcement appeared to be no accident -- just as Christmas shoppers packed malls elsewhere in Caracas.

He didn't preach against the buying frenzy in general, but did say at another point in his speech that "Christ was a socialist."
[Note that Chavez ideas are based on liberation theology, a philosophy that I have discussed in past posts [1,] [2], [3] and have claimed represents Obama's default philosophy (his overt philosophy is pragmatism).]
The state sanctioned seizure of private property by a cheap thug who justifies his theft by referencing the two most influential philosophers in Western civilization, Marx and Christ, demonstrates in stark terms the real consequences of bad ideas emanating from bad philosophers - ideas that a child could tell you are bad.

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