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Saturday, June 18, 2016

Convinced by unreality

Megan McArdle visits Britain and learns that there is more to a nation than its economy:
Somehow, over the last half-century, Western elites managed to convince themselves that nationalism was not real. Perhaps it had been real in the past, like cholera and telegraph machines, but now that we were smarter and more modern, it would be forgotten in the due course of time as better ideas supplanted it.

That now seems hopelessly naive. People do care more about people who are like them -- who speak their language, eat their food, share their customs and values. And when elites try to ignore those sentiments -- or banish them by declaring that they are simply racist -- this doesn’t make the sentiments go away. It makes the non-elites suspect the elites of disloyalty. For though elites may find something vaguely horrifying about saying that you care more about people who are like you than you do about people who are culturally or geographically further away, the rest of the population is outraged by the never-stated corollary: that the elites running things feel no greater moral obligation to their fellow countrymen than they do to some random stranger in another country. And perhaps we can argue that this is the morally correct way to feel -- but if it is truly the case, you can see why ordinary folks would be suspicious about allowing the elites to continue to exercise great power over their lives.

It’s therefore not entirely surprising that people are reacting strongly against the EU, the epitome of an elite institution: a technocratic bureaucracy designed to remove many questions from the democratic control of voters in the constituent countries. Elites can earnestly explain that a British exit will be very costly to Britain (true), that many of the promises made on Brexit’s behalf are patently ridiculous (also true), that leaving will create all sorts of security problems and also cost the masses many things they like, such as breezing through passport control en route to their cheap continental holidays. Elites can even be right about all of those things. They still shouldn’t be too shocked when ordinary people respond just as Republican primary voters did to their own establishment last spring: “But you see, I don’t trust you anymore.”
First of all, they're not right. Second, they are evil, self-serving people who shouldn't be trusted about anything. Third, if they're for it, the wise thing to do is oppose it at all costs even if you don't have a clue about it.

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50 Comments:

Anonymous SciVo June 18, 2016 4:44 AM  

I have long had a complicated relationship with McArdle's writing, in that I don't so much disagree with what she says as with what she doesn't say. I mean, she tends toward big-picture sketches, and I'm often frustrated by her neglect of points that I think are important.

This, I think, was one of her best.

Anonymous Shut up rabbit June 18, 2016 5:36 AM  

Always amazes me how the useful idiots constantly fall for this globalist nonsense. Tell a bunch of failures, "vote for me and I'll give you the other guy's stuff" seems to blind them to what their leaders are really up to: collectivism is the easiest way for the rich to get richer and to keep it it all.

Anonymous fred June 18, 2016 6:00 AM  

Well when you let your elites become (((elites))), what else did you expect?

"It makes the non-elites suspect the (((elites))) of disloyalty."

Suspect? SUSPECT?!?

Anonymous Tredwells June 18, 2016 6:14 AM  

Somewhat off-topic, but related to the UK all the same:

Jo Cox's murderer, Tommy Mair, has just given his name as "Death to traitors, freedom for Britain" when asked for it in court.

http://archive.is/VLQZ1

Expect the MSM to run wild with this to further smear the Leave campaign.

Blogger Desillusionerad June 18, 2016 6:21 AM  

The problem with the notion that we should care for everyone equally (which is a sound moral proposition, I grant you) is that then we will care about everyone equally.
That is to say, everyone (but my family) will be equally unimportant to me - Nationalism essentially makes people irrationally care more for people than they 'should' - The deluded notion of the 'globalists' is that people can be made to care as strongly about everyone as they do for their fellow citizens, just because its a 'sound moral proposition' - And just no it doesn't work like that. Whatever state you want to have (a libertarian one, or a western European socialist one) it always requires a not inconsiderable part of the population to bear a disproportionate amount of the costs to care for everyone - even in the libertarian one - Now I don't mind supporting 'my people' I'm Cool with that - Its the millions of people who are NOT my people, who loudly declare that they are not my people, that they shit on my values, my principles, They? - I'm willing to pay for the one way plane ticket, that's the end of my generosity.

Anonymous Shut up rabbit June 18, 2016 6:42 AM  

@4. Tredwells The guy is a certified loon - did he say he's Napoleon as well?

Blogger Unknown June 18, 2016 6:43 AM  

IMO she missed an important point with the whole "elite cares about a random foreigner as much as they do about you".
Most people I see who find this fact disturbing, are also cynical enough to see that the elite's "empathy" towards those foreigners is a verbal facade hiding an utterly shitty if not inhuman disposition.
So the problem then becomes "the elite cares as much about me as a random person far away, *and they don't really give a flying fuck that person*"

Blogger Aeoli Pera June 18, 2016 6:58 AM  

the never-stated corollary: that the elites running things feel no greater moral obligation to their fellow countrymen than they do to some random stranger in another country.

They're plenty loyal to each other.

Anonymous Spartacus xxxxx June 18, 2016 7:07 AM  

Shut up rabbit wrote:@4. Tredwells The guy is a certified loon - did he say he's Napoleon as well?


Without disagreeing, that was a clever and efficient way to get his message out.

SciVo wrote:I have long had a complicated relationship with McArdle's writing, in that I don't so much disagree with what she says as with what she doesn't say. I mean, she tends toward big-picture sketches, and I'm often frustrated by her neglect of points that I think are important.

This, I think, was one of her best.



It reads to me like it comes from higher up, especially considering the publisher. Elites signaling to elites and their managers- yeah, President Trump, you're right and we need to change course before this blows up in our faces. Apparently they can read the internet comments sections too:

The storm may indeed pass, but it may blow up into a hurricane -- and the majority may go shopping for a new elite, one they trust to take care of people like them. -McArdle

It's been said before-

"From the moment when the machine first made its appearance it was clear to all thinking people that the need for human drudgery, and therefore to a great extent for human inequality, had disappeared... if leisure and security were enjoyed by all alike, the great mass of human beings who are normally stupefied by poverty would become literate and would learn to think for themselves; and when once they had done this, they would sooner or later realise that the privileged minority had no function, and they would sweep it away. In the long run, a hierarchical society was only possible on a basis of poverty and ignorance... Ignorance is Strength" -Blair http://www.peace.ca/1984.htm

Blogger Xmas June 18, 2016 7:14 AM  

That 'I don't trust you anymore' is a real killer.

Blogger James Dixon June 18, 2016 7:27 AM  

> The guy is a certified loon - did he say he's Napoleon as well?

But how can that be? Britain has socialized medicine. Surely he's receiving the best treatment possible for his mental problems, right?

Blogger Neanderserk June 18, 2016 7:40 AM  

Jesus said love your neighbor.

The global elite is a gated neighborhood.

Burn it down.

Blogger dienw June 18, 2016 7:46 AM  

And the GOPe keeps right on rolling: "the House on Thursday rejected two GOP proposals to prevent the Obama administration from enlisting young illegal immigrants to serve in the military."
The elites are arrogant beyond measure: their puppets believe themselves to be so secure against reprisal: let this be their comeuppance: "The question of how to deal with traitors and colluders is answered in the wartime rule of President Abraham Lincoln.".

Blogger weka June 18, 2016 7:53 AM  

First of all, they're not right. Second, they are evil, self-serving people who shouldn't be trusted about anything. Third, if they're for it, the wise thing to do is oppose it at all costs even if you don't have a clue about it.

Need to edit that into three tweets, and make it go viral.

Britain has socialized medicine. Surely he's receiving the best treatment possible for his mental problems, right?

The NICE (National Inst. of Clinical Evidence) has to consider what is the cheapest option and balance against what is best and what is available. Makes reading their guidelines an exercise in deconstruction.

All socialized medicine is rationed medicine: best has nothing to do with it.

Blogger weka June 18, 2016 7:59 AM  

I am not as good as VD, but use these as drafts.

https://twitter.com/weka_ilk/status/744136220637224960

https://twitter.com/weka_ilk/status/744136457233661954

https://twitter.com/weka_ilk/status/744136663257907201

Blogger James Dixon June 18, 2016 8:05 AM  

> All socialized medicine is rationed medicine: best has nothing to do with it.

Of course. But when have you heard Obama or Hillary admit that?

All medicine is rationed medicine. It's either going to be rationed by cost in a free market or rationed by politics in a socialist one. Take your pick.

Anonymous JAG June 18, 2016 8:06 AM  

The world is rapidly approaching a time of elites being marched to the noose. History is once again repeating itself. You can only oppress people for so long before they have had enough. The most tyrannical rulers of history have found this out. The modern elites will be no different.

Anonymous Avalanche June 18, 2016 8:15 AM  

@5 "... the notion that we should care for everyone equally (which is a sound moral proposition, I grant you)"

!! "sound" proposition?! Have you ever examined the premises underlying that tripe? Do you accept it as "sound" because that's what you've been taught since childhood? (Or should I write: propagandized to believe?) Is it what your religion teaches you? (That other religions do NOT teach their adherents?)

On what basis is it "sound"? How can it be practically instituted (or is that even possible)? Should you "care equally" for someone trying to hurt your family?

"We should care for everyone equally" belongs on an SJW Code of Conduct (god knows, it's VAGUE enough! And impossible to implement!) -- NOT in a thinking person's mind!

Anonymous SciVo June 18, 2016 8:38 AM  

@17:

Ah, but they always imagine that this time will be different, because they're special and these peons really need their leadership. They're not at all like those historical parasites that got a richly-deservèd comeuppance. Nothing in common, nosiree bob.

Blogger The Deuce June 18, 2016 9:23 AM  

The thing is, the elites DO care more about people like themselves. They work to benefit themselves and their fellow elites who's sensibilities they share at the expense of everyone else, though it is true that they don't care any more about the interests countrymen they are supposedly there to serve and represent than they do about some random Muslim goatherd in Somolia. They are merely hypocritical and far more malignant in their tribalism, since unlike most of their countrymen, they wish to control everyone to their benefit rather than stick to themselves and leave other tribes alone.

Blogger dc.sunsets June 18, 2016 9:34 AM  

the elites running things feel no greater moral obligation to their fellow countrymen than they do to some random stranger in another country.
To voters in Paul Ryan's district, your sitting congressman demonstrates, by revealed preference, that he cares more about random FOREIGNERS in 3rd world cesspools than he does about YOU.

Ditto for the clowns in most of our current government.

Blogger Desillusionerad June 18, 2016 9:59 AM  


!! "sound" proposition?! Have you ever examined the premises underlying that tripe? Do you accept it as "sound" because that's what you've been taught since childhood? (Or should I write: propagandized to believe?) Is it what your religion teaches you? (That other religions do NOT teach their adherents?)

first, being an atheist, no this has nothing to do with religion.
Second, its a very simple proposition, take random human being number 256 million, and then random human being 4,783 billion - which one should i care more about?

Blogger Cecil Henry June 18, 2016 10:06 AM  

As usual, a determined argument meant to distort the issue and then avoid it. That's what the MSM is for!!!


The West is a culture created by a specific people and it will be destroyed if that people is dispossessed. Europeans everywhere have the self-evident right to secure their homelands for themselves, without regard to the claims others make upon it.

Diversity is a code word for White Genocide. Enough. Freedom now. Freedom from enforced, genocidal 'diversity'.

Blogger Snidely Whiplash June 18, 2016 10:06 AM  

Desillusionerad wrote:which one should i care more about?

No such thing as a "random person". People exist in relationship to one another, and you should care about the ones closest in relationship to you. But I don't expect Atheists to understand simple things like that.

Blogger bob k. mando June 18, 2016 10:23 AM  

McCardle
Somehow, over the last half-century, Western elites managed to convince themselves that nationalism was not real.



no, this is an intrinsic part of the Communist Confession of Faith and has been around since ~1850.

yes, Communists have actually had a "Confession of Faith" for +150 years.

Blogger bob k. mando June 18, 2016 10:27 AM  

19. SciVo June 18, 2016 8:38 AM
Nothing in common, nosiree bob.



you rang?

Anonymous BGKB June 18, 2016 10:47 AM  

Tell a bunch of failures, "vote for me and I'll give you the other guy's stuff" seems to blind them to what their leaders are really up to

The elite among collectivists are far richer than any robber baron. Common Core teaches that a nigger king with lots of surface deposits of gold that spent so much gold in Mecca that he depressed the value(because he was used to trading a pound of gold for beads) was the richest man in history but in reality no one was richer than Stalin.

has just given his name as "Death to traitors, freedom for Britain" when asked for it in court

Please if you are going to kill traitors in the UK say "I did it for the 1900+ little white British girls gang raped by 3rd world savage moslems in Rotherham UK alone", or ask to have your name changed to that.

I don't mind supporting 'my people' I'm Cool with that - Its the millions of people who are NOT my people, who loudly declare that

Someone's got to pay for Latrina's 21 illegitimate crack babies, obviously working gays have to pay their fair share. /sarc. Its far easier to have a civilization with the commonweal of little dutch boys putting their fingers in a dyke (Oddly common core teaches the other way) than one with people who would rob such a person, even worse with people whose evolutionary response to malaria(sickle cell) has them call off sick 2+ weeks a year in nations malaria is controlled. Asians and whites don't need anywhere near as much healthcare as the R selected until near retirement age.

All medicine is rationed medicine. It's either going to be rationed by cost in a free market or rationed by politics in a socialist one

There are hospitals that would be shut down if not for socialized medicine. More than one healthcare traveler has admitted they worked at hospitals that if they got shot in the parking lot they would ask to be taken to another location because they didn't want to be caught dead there.

, though it is true that they don't care any more about the interests countrymen they are supposedly there to serve and represent

Do the jewish elites in Israel care about the little jews?

Blogger dc.sunsets June 18, 2016 11:00 AM  

the elites running things feel no greater moral obligation to their fellow countrymen than they do to some random stranger in another country.
To voters in Paul Ryan's district, your sitting congressman demonstrates, by revealed preference, that he cares more about random FOREIGNERS in 3rd world cesspools than he does about YOU.

Ditto for the clowns in most of our current government.

Blogger Desillusionerad June 18, 2016 11:43 AM  

"No such thing as a "random person". People exist in relationship to one another, and you should care about the ones closest in relationship to you. But I don't expect Atheists to understand simple things like that."

You have a meaningful relationship with abdullah muktar mohamed? the statistically probable person i just made up?
if you randomly select 10 people, Odds are you wont have any meaningful connection to any one of them - So i reiterate who should you care more about?
Remember this is all about my initial proposition, we should care about everyone equally - (absent family friends so on) - because its irrational to care more about any one random person than any other person.

Blogger Desillusionerad June 18, 2016 11:44 AM  

the last sentence should read: because its irrational to care more about any one random person than any other RANDOM person.

Blogger The Kurgan June 18, 2016 11:52 AM  

Yup. Vox's summary at the end is perfect.
Basically the elites need to be treated like witches by the (theoretical) inquisition. If they drown we can forgive them, else we burn them at the stake.
Saving their souls through Inquisition is the merciful thing to do.

Blogger Robert What? June 18, 2016 12:38 PM  

You are wrong about one thing: in the modern elitist mentality, you are not allowed to care about your family than for any random migrant. The elitists obviously put their own families first, but you are not allowed to, otherwise you are racist.

Blogger Robert What? June 18, 2016 12:41 PM  

The elitists care about random migrants the same as they care about their own countrymen. Which means they don't give a sh*t about either.

Blogger The CronoLink June 18, 2016 12:42 PM  

"And perhaps we can argue that this is the morally correct way to feel"

So, is this Megan feeling reluctant to admit she feels/wants to be like one of the elite?

Blogger Pseudotsuga June 18, 2016 12:50 PM  

I remember thinking, way back when the EU was first proposed, that it was a dodgy idea, and that it was going to make a select few quite rich and not really help the vast majority of Europeans. I thought that this was obvious, but only now over time have I come to realize just how it was "sold".

Anonymous FP June 18, 2016 1:02 PM  

@4 It was hilarious yesterday to hear on the salem radio news network some BBC type chick citing the SPLC on this guy, claiming ties to US white nationalist types.

OpenID luciussomesuch June 18, 2016 2:06 PM  

"Remember this is all about my initial proposition, we should care about everyone equally - (absent family friends so on)"

--Hey Spinoza, who told you you were entitled to that Unprincipled Exception? What part of "equal" didn't you understand?

Or if family really has some sort of claim on you-- perhaps extended families, religious families, linguistic and cultural and historical families, have some sort of claim too? Perhaps there are concentric circles of duty to others? . . .

Blogger Dire Badger June 18, 2016 2:25 PM  

@37-

You forget, in this day and age, 'duty' is a dirty word.

Blogger Geir Balderson June 18, 2016 2:44 PM  

The interesting or damning thing about cultural elites is they do the whole diversity thing for the money and power.

They, however, live in gated communities or surrounded by walls and guns to keep out the raff and the riff. Look where old diversity champion Scalzi resides!! He has a hug fat-ass lawn and I suppose swarms of heavy-lifting girls to protect him!! Shades of Evil Bond villain stroking his cat!!

Blogger rcocean June 18, 2016 2:55 PM  

Actually once the British Elites import enough 3rd worlders they WILL be able to ignore the masses. They can play divide and conquer and buy off their grateful "immigrants" with shiny beads and free stuff and protection from non-existent "racism".

Blogger rcocean June 18, 2016 2:58 PM  

You can see that in the USA. The blacks vote 90% Democrat and don't really care what the Hillary or the Democrat elite does as long as they get paid off with quotas, welfare, and set-asides. The Democrats could literally dig up Stalin's Corpse and run him for President and get 65% of the minority vote. The Republicans most look forward to the day when they can run their POTUS primary like the Democrats, with a couple hundred "elite" super-delegates deciding who gets nominated.

Blogger Forbes June 18, 2016 4:32 PM  

>"Elites can earnestly explain that a British exit will be very costly to Britain (true), that many of the promises made on Brexit’s behalf are patently ridiculous (also true)..."

Assertions made, supporting evidence not available. Typical lapdog media Narrative.

Blogger Sagramore June 18, 2016 5:02 PM  

@4 Sigh. Secured Party would have sufficed.

Anonymous Toddy Cat June 18, 2016 6:19 PM  

"And perhaps we can argue that this is the morally correct way to feel" We can do no such thing, not if we are traditional Christians. As the Catholic Encyclopedia states, :he exercise of charity would soon become injudicious and inoperative unless there be in this, as in all the moral virtues, a well-defined order. The ordo caritatis, as theologians a term it, takes into account these different factors:

the persons who claim our love,
the advantages which we desire to procure for them, and
the necessity in which they are placed.
The precedence is plain enough when these factors are viewed separately. Regarding the persons alone, the order is somewhat as follows: self, wife, children, parents, brothers and sisters, friends, domestics, neighbours, fellow-countrymen, and all others. " We are supposed to feel greater concern for our countrymen, all other things being equal. As always, our "Elites" are heretics...

Anonymous Ken June 18, 2016 6:22 PM  

Europe and America deserve Globalism for turning away from God. When a people become so narcissistic and self absorbed as to spend their priorities and time in chasing Sin while mocking God, God delivers those worldly pleasure seekers over to their Sin.

At which point the Devil swoops in to push his one world agenda using his (((Revelation 2:9))) helpers. We go from the Celestial and Eternal God to the temporal and profane "god of this world".

He delivers onto the land twisted perversions and inversions of truth. (((PC))) Along with that comes the Whore of Babylon wares of (((multiculturalism, diversity and open borders))). The idea is to destroy the common bonds and language. From there, take over, loot and rule.

Prophecies are playing out. This is bigger than liberal vs conservative. The Alt-right already knows that. This is bigger than the forces of Globalism fighting against the resurgent resistance of an awakening Nationalism. People fighting for home, hearth, family and nation against the would be elites. Bigger.

At the end of the road of Globalism lies a throne. And the God damned Devil himself attempts to rule from there.

If you're not battling this on all levels, political, moral and spiritual, you will lose and you will be the cuck.

Anonymous A Paradigm Is More Than Twenty Cents June 18, 2016 7:58 PM  

The elites in Europe, the UK and the US have all clearly decided to elect a new people. The people who are being replaced are now contemplating that elite with the distrust they have earned.

McArdle can’t see this clearly because as an Acela corridor writer, who has no children and probably never will, she’s much closer to the US elites than to any of the mere plebes out in flyover country. It’s good she can see part of reality. It would be better if she could see more of it and tell her elite pals that their plan isn’t working out as expected

Anonymous The Un Named June 18, 2016 8:30 PM  

"Europe and America deserve Globalism for turning away from God"
Do all the people in Europe and the USA that didn't gee-haw to Globalism or turn their backs on God deserves what is coming to them ? To me, they are our saving grace.

Anonymous Ken June 18, 2016 11:33 PM  

God's Remnant. Called to Purpose.

Anonymous CC June 19, 2016 11:01 AM  

It's not a sound moral proposition to care for random people equally. Merely an appealing one. Which is what they are counting on when they get a people to betray themselves. Therefore it's wrong (and evil). Waking up is coming to terms with that realisation.

Blogger Sagramore June 19, 2016 7:07 PM  

@46 It’s good she can see part of reality. It would be better if she could see more of it and tell her elite pals that their plan isn’t working out as expected.

I quit wasting my time warning them about five years ago. People don't like it when you shatter their illusions.

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