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Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Obama to 'tea-bag' protesters: I simply want to rule you

In response to the tax day protests, Obama offered the following:

Americans need a "government that is working to create jobs and opportunity for them, rather than simply giving more and more to those at the very top in the false hope that wealth will trickle down," Obama said.

In his remarks, Obama decried the use of taxes as a political wedge issue "to scare people into supporting policies that increased the burden on working people instead of helping them live their dreams."

"We start from the simple premise that we should reduce the tax burden on working people, while helping Americans go to college, own a home, raise a family, start a business and save for retirement," Obama said. [emphasis mine]

This is prime Obama pragmatism on display. Notice that he claims to start from a "simple premise": Marxism. Evidently, it is the government's function to "help" with college, buying a house, the kids, career, retirement, i.e. to intrude on every aspect of an individuals life from the cradle to the grave. Furthermore, he actually implies that the government "gives" money to "those at the top" as if the government is responsible for the wealth of the producers not vice versa! Then, in an ode to Marxist class warfare, he cites the proverbial burden of "working people" failing to recognize that the top earners pay over 90% of the taxes and that the very taxes and regulations on "those at the top" that he supports destroys capital and thus decreases the real wages of the "working people" with which he claims to be so concerned.

Note that he asserts this casually as a matter of fact. In other words, Marxism represents his default philosophy not to be proven or questioned but rather - assumed. What about the principle of individual rights? Where will he get the money to "help"? Won't such a policy necessitate the theft of the earnings of the productive? Is this just? To the pragmatist, there are no principles to be proved or debated. He accepts the moral and political philosophies of the culture and seeks to act. Simple.

This gives rise to another premise in the quote. He "decries the use of taxes as a political wedge" that might "scare people", i.e., he rejects the idea that anyone who questions or opposes taxes could be motivated by principles, morality or justice. Again, to him there are no principles, morality, or justice. Therefore, disagreement or protests can only be attributed to "politics" or appeals to emotion. This premise is why the pragmatist is so eager to negotiate and compromise and so ready to denigrate anyone who stands on principle as an "ideologue" or "extremist".

Obama has stated on several occasions that he is not an advocate of "big government." He is telling the truth. He does not consider his multi-trillion dollar fascist takeover of the U.S. economy to be big government. To him, his policies represent normal government, i.e., his policies are consistent with the given metaphysically unassailable premises of Marxism . Let's hope that he doesn't take a liking to big government.


madmax said...

Its amazing how philosophically transparent Obama is. Well that is, if you have developed the ability of philosophical detection. But you captured Obama's premises perfectly. He takes Marxism, and even deeper - altruism, as unquestioned absolutes. He would never describe it that way because he would never claim allegiance to any absolutes. But his philosophy and that of the entire Left is really the logical outgrowth of skepticism and subjectivism.

Since the time of Hume and Kant, induction and principled thought have been under assault. Today, the dominant epistemologies all reject absolutes and moral absolutes most of all. "Only religious zealots think in those terms" is something Sam Harris has stated I believe and Richard Dawkins as well. (Harris has actually stated that criminals are like broken clocks and they need to be fixed the way any machine needs to be fixed. To him any view of absolute morality and thus retributive criminal justice is a barbarous relic of our primitive past. And Harris is one of the *better* leftists.)

Obama is merely cashing his chips in on the current philosophic trends. As great as these tea protests are, I don't think there will be any significant improvement in the culture until episptemological subjectivism is seriously challenged in the universities. It really does come down to the intellectual spread of Rand's epistemology.

Simon said...

There has been an assault on dissent by law enforcement, secret police and the media in this country for decades- I think the focus of this discussion should be on the importance of allowing a citizenry to assemble and exercise their first amendment rights without the threat of violence or harassment: whether they oppose unjust taxation, unjust wars, or unjust anything. The so called "left" should be ashamed for demonizing the tea bag protesters. At the same time, state surveillance, media mockery, and outright physical force has been used historically against anti-war protest movements at a much, much higher rate. Obviously, they have used public protest as a tool much more in recent history, but my answer to anyone opposing people's right to protest is: wouldn't you want the same right if an issue you valued moved you to protest?

Michael Labeit said...

Marxism and pragmatism are not strangers to each other. Christian socialist Cornel West openly admits of his affinity for both Marxism and pragmatism.

Michael Labeit said...

Marxism and pragmatism are not strangers to each other. Christian socialist Cornel West openly admits of his affinity for both Marxism and pragmatism.

The Rat Cap said...


If you have any good links on this guy please let me know - would like to use that to support the Marxism/Pragmatism combo as Obama's philosophy (and the rest of academia...).



You said:

The so called "left" should be ashamed for demonizing the tea bag protesters.

You are right, they should but they do not just as they do not defend free speech by the right but in fact support speech codes and the "fairness doctrine". I attempted to explain this observation in my post:



Keep in mind, that the Left is not opposed to murder, torture and repression. They are opposed to murder, torture, and repression for the wrong reasons by the wrong people. Properly, both fascism and communism should be understood and rejected as being two variants of the same underlying philosophy of collectivism. That is, both fascism and communism deny individual rights and subjugate the individual to the group....

In other words, don't expect any "solidarity" from the Left.

Let me know what you think.