Andrew Sullivan’s Discombobulated Reality

Andrew Sullivan takes issue with libertarian’s inability to “engage” in so-called “political reality.”

Does even the most devoted libertarian really believe that any responsible president of any party would not have tried to save the economy from a total financial meltdown? Do they recall that the Congress initially did turn it down and then changed its mind? And would it be possible for them to acknowledge that the bank bailout seems to have been far more successful than almost anyone believed at the time?

As readers know, the Dish is very libertarian-friendly. But sometimes they drive us nuts with their utter disengagement with, you know, political reality.

For the purposes of the post, I’m not interested in debating the relative merit of Christine O’Donnell. Rather I’m much interested in referencing a post, The Untamed Prince, Sullivan published earlier in the week. In that post Sullivan practically hoists the black flag in criticizing The Prince qua Prince ruling of the Ninth Circuit court regarding State secrets. Writes Sullivan:

Have I been radicalized by this? You betcha. Because this is so plainly not a nation under the rule of law anymore. And there are very few political issues more important than that.

Soon thereafter, however, Sullivan resumed his quest for salvation from the establishment center. For example, here’s Sullivan being newly inspired by the reality-based conservatism of Mitch Daniels. Mitch fucking Daniels?

What a poseur. Sullivan has changed directions on the 2-lane political street more times than a Friday night high schooler cruising the the only road that runs through the middle of nowhere town USA. He’s an emblem of Sartwell’s comedy: those who are compelled by “the masochist fantasy of transcendence through subordination.” Mitch Daniels, a movement turns its lonely eyes to you. Please!

Let us be clear. When you write this is not “a nation under the rule of law anymore” you are conceding Plutocracy. And do you know who defends something like TARP in a plutocracy? That would be the plutocrats…or those those who are quite fine with the Status Quo of the Plutocracy, or those who are subsumed by the communitarian propaganda of the party in power. Which is it for Sullivan? Or is Sullivan just a type of paranoid delusional seeking reality in the paranoid center.

Prozac is a wondrous thing…


7 thoughts on “Andrew Sullivan’s Discombobulated Reality

  1. “Does even the most devoted libertarian really believe that any responsible president of any party would not have tried to save the economy from a total financial meltdown? ”

    Well, this devoted libertarian doesn’t believe the office of the president is legitimate in the first place, so it’s a moot point.

  2. Do you agree that in the absence of all that intervention, the current American economy likely would have imploded? And after the economy imploded, the political system probably would have followed?

    If you’re looking for a revolution, then you would be fine with that. However, there are a number of “libertarians” (i.e. conservative Republicans) who seem to believe that the status quo would have been stable in the absence of a bailout*. I think that those are the people that he is criticizing.

    *Or perhaps, those people also would have welcomed economic and political turmoil as an opportunity to impose fascism.

    1. No, the economy would not have “imploded.” Some aspects of the political economy would have, no doubt. So, it wouldn’t have been fine for the Status Quo, and for some, it would have been catastrophic, no doubt.

      Read my “Modeling Capitalist Regime Change Post”

      The distinction that should be made is between political economy regime change and political regime change. No bailouts would have resulted quite possibly in a political economy regime change. But the bailouts have put the Fed in the same risk profile as AIG was before. In this sense, the bailouts have made political regime change much more likely. A severe currency crisis would, in effect, wipe out the Fed, and, in effect would collapse the financial underpinning of the US government. So the bailouts in effect traded artificial stability for a profound loss of resiliency.

  3. Sullivan’s statement about the bailouts suggests he dismisses out of hand virtually any structural critique of the U.S. economy. Considering the policy history, to say “a president of any party would’ve intervened” is to say nothing: Of course they would’ve, it took intervention to set it up like that in the first place!

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