Posted tagged ‘Thomas Sowell’

July 4th – Individual Freedom vs. Government Tyranny

July 4, 2019

Statue of Liberty on the background of flag usa, sunrise and fireworks

I reread the fourth chapter in Thomas Sowell’s book, “The Quest for Cosmic Justice”, every 4th of July. It is a must read. The fourth chapter is titled “The Quiet Repeal of the American Revolution”. I wish what he states about the difference between the American Revolution and all other revolutions was understood by all Americans. Here are some excerpts from this chapter.

“The war for American independence was not simply a landmark event in the history of the United States. It was a landmark in the history of the world – and especially a landmark in the history of the evolution of free and democratic societies. It’s international significance was symbolized by France’s donation of the Statue of Liberty to the Unites States on the one hundredth anniversary of the Declaration of Independence and by the creation of a facsimile of this state in China, more than a century after that, by protesters vainly seeking to create a free and democratic government in that country”

 

THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION IS SUPERIOR TO ALL OTHERS

“The American revolution was in some ways the most far-reaching of all the great revolutions in history. Other revolutions may have had more sweeping rhetoric, or greater extremes of violence and terror, or more categorical claims of change. They may even have had more radical changes of personnel, as in the change from czarist to Communist rulers in Moscow, while replacing one form of autocratic despotism with another and more bloody from.”

“The French Revolution of the succeeding decade used similar rhetoric, and was supported by such prominent figures in the American Revolution as Thomas Jefferson and Thomas Paine, but nevertheless the French Revolution was grounded on entirely different assumptions and of course took a different path all to characteristic of later revolutions that began with lofty ideals and ended with new and more ruthless despotism.”

  “The American Revolution, however, went further in rejecting a basic conception of man and society that goes back thousands of years, and which is still with us today…people with the most diverse philosophic persuasions have proceeded as if what was needed was to replace false doctrines with true doctrines and false leaders with true leaders – the heathens with the faithful, capitalists with socialists, royalty with republicans, and so on. But, unlike the French revolution and the Bolshevik revolution, for example, the American revolution and its resulting constitution established was not simply a particular system but a process of changing systems, practices, and leaders, together with a method of constraining whoever or whatever was ascendant at any given time…. it gave to the common man a voice, a veto, elbow room, and a refuge from the rampaging presumptions of his “betters”….. it was seen by others in the world at large as a landmark in the general struggle for human freedom. That is why it must be opposed by those with more ambitious visions (even if they do not consciously feel any animosity against constitutional freedoms) because, on issue after issue, those freedoms stand between the morally self-anointed and the realization of dreams which have overwhelming importance to them. Some of these dreams revolve around the quest for cosmic justice, in which constitutional constraints may be seen as technicalities to be finessed. Other dreams may be about personal ambitions that can be fulfilled only in a very different kind of society from that established by the Constitution… Ego and ideals are of course not mutually exclusive but may readily exist in the same individual, who may even mistake the former from the latter.”

America was based on the idea that the individual was sovereign. Our founders knew that Government power had to be restrained or else it would be used arbitrarily by politicians and bureaucrats who were in position to wield it. Our Government was established to protect the individual and his property from aggression by these individuals.

In this chapter Sowell quotes a little known speech by Abraham Lincoln given in 1838 (read here) a mere sixty two years after the signing of the Declaration of Independence. Lincoln fears the dangers to our freedom would not come from foreign enemies, but from internal threats.

“If and when the fundamental principles and structure of American government should fall under attack, “men of sufficient talent and ambition will not be wanting to seize the opportunity” and “strike a blow” against free government.”

“What is particularly significant about Lincoln’s warning is that is was based on the vision of what human beings are like and especially what talented and ambitions leaders are like. To Lincoln, the historic achievement of American society in establishing a new form of government in the world was in jeopardy from later elites precisely because that achievement was already history:”

“Lincoln said: The field of glory is harvested, and the crop is already appropriated. But new reapers will arise, and they, too, will seek a field. It is to deny, what the history of the world tells us is true, to suppose that men of ambition and talents will not continue to spring up amongst us. And , when they do, they will as naturally seek the gratification of their ruling passion, as others have so done before them. The question is, can the gratification be found in supporting and maintaining an edifice that has been erected by others? Most certainly it cannot.”

“While the ambitions of some might be satisfied with “a seat in Congress, a gubernatorial or a presidential chair,” Lincoln said, “such belong not to the family of the lion or the tribe of the eagle.”

“Lincoln added: “What! Think you these places would satisfy an Alexander, a Caesar, or a Napoleon? – Never! Towering genius disdains a beaten path. It seeks regions hitherto unexplored. – It sees not distinction in adding story to story, upon the monuments of fame, erected to memory of others. It denies that it is glory enough to serve under any chief. It scorns to tread in the footsteps of any predecessor, however illustrious. It thirsts and burns for distinction; and, if possible. it will have it, whether at the expense of emancipating slaves, or enslaving freemen.”

Lincoln thought safeguarding those institutions would require a public sufficiently united, sufficiently attached to freedom, and sufficiently wise, “to successfully frustrate his designs.

We are not just talking about a single person with a tyrannical idea. We are also talking about a tyrannical idea which has many people with political power who want to implement this tyranny.

 

OUR HISTORY OF LIBERTY IS FADING

But for me here is the part of Lincoln’s speech that really hit me. He is talking about how the spirit of “76” will fade as time passes.

Lincoln said: “I do not mean to say, that the scenes of the revolution are not or ever will be entirely forgotten; but that like every thing else, they must fade upon the memory of the world, and grow more and more dim by the lapse of time. In history, we hope, they will be read of, and recounted, so long as the bible shall be read; but even granting that they will, their influence cannot be what it heretofore has been. even then, they cannot be so universally known, nor so vividly felt, as they were by the generation just gone to rest. At the close of that struggle, nearly every adult male had been a participator in some of its scenes. The consequence was, that of those scenes, in the form of a husband, a father, a son or brother, a living history was to be found in every family – a history bearing the indubitable testimonies of its own authenticity, in the limbs mangled, in the scars of woulds received, in the midst of the very scenes related – a history, too, that could be read and understood alike by all, the wise and the ignorant, the learned and the unlearned. – But those histories are gone. they can be read no more forever. They were a fortress of strength; but, what invading foeman could never do, the silent artillery of time has done: the leveling of its walls. They are gone. – They were a forest of giant oaks: but the all-resistless hurricane had swept over them, and left only, here and there, a lonely trunk, despoiled of its verdure, shorn of its foliage; unshading and unshaded, to murmur in a few gentle breezes, and to combat with its mutilated limbs, a few more ruder storms, then to sink, and be no more.

“They were the pillars of the temple of liberty; and now, that they have crumbled away, that temple must fall, unless we, their descendants, supply their places with other pillars, hewn from the solid quarry of sober reason. Passion has helped us; but can do so no more. It will in future be our enemy. Reason, cold, calculating, unimpassioned reason, must furnish all the materials for our future support and defence. Let those materials be moulded into general intelligence, sound morality, and in particular, a reverence for the constitution and laws:…

“Upon these let the proud fabric of freedom rest, as the rock of its basis; and as truly as has been said of the only greater institution, “the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”

Today Ocasio Cortez and the rest of Americas socialist insurgents have a great deal of passion but no sober logic and reason. The side that is supposed to be for individual freedom and liberty has lost its passion. But more importantly it has lost the ability to supply the sober reason necessary to combat the passion of the socialist insurgents in our midst.

The party of Lincoln, the Republicans, are supposed to be the party of small government. But very few Republican politicians can articulate why freedom is superior to government central planning aka tyranny. So most have neither passion or reason. That’s a bad combination.

Will our side become passionate enough to learn the sober reasoning for freedom and liberty before the passion of the socialist insurgents win the day? Only the passage of time will answer that question.

 

THE CASE FOR FREEDOM

THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE (read here) was our statement of freedom form British tyranny. This document is talking about today as much as it was appropriate in its time. On July 4th, Independence Day, take some time to read the Declaration of Independence. Then tell me it isn’t speaking about the present. This document applies to the past, the present and the future.

 

 

PAUL HARVEY; OUR LIVES, OUR FORTUNES, OUR SACRED HONOR.

 

 

RAY CHARLES – AMERICA THE BEAUTIFUL

This brings a tear to my eye every time.

 

 

Related Article: July 4th 2018: Independence Day, at austrianaddict.com.

Related Article: July 4th: What Does Independence Day Mean? at austrianaddict.com.

Related Article: July 4th – Our Choice: Liberty or Tyranny, at austrianaddict.com.

 

 

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Must Reads For The Week 6/29/19

July 1, 2019

“The coordination of men’s activities through central planning or through voluntary cooperation are roads going in very different directions, the first to serfdom and poverty, the second to freedom and plenty.” – F. A. Hayek

 

U.S. Oil, Gas Output Surges The Most Ever For A Single Country, by Matthew Carr and Jeremy Hodges, at bloomberg.com. The American shale revolution has made this possible. Fracking has brought the price of oil down from a high of $150 a barrel to a trading range of between $40 and $70 a barrel.

Products Made From Petroleum, a ranken-energy.com. Look at the long list of products made from oil. So what do you think the real cost would be if we got rid of fossil fuels?

With Venezuela In Collapse, Towns Slip Into Primitive Isolation, by Corina Pons, at reuters.com. Since their currency has no value, because of money printing by government, people are resorting to a barter system.

Texas Legalizes Lemonade Stands Run By Children, by Billy Binion, at reason.com. Talk about big brother. A permit was required for a kid to set up a lemonade stand. But the Texas legislature has repealed the requirement. The lesson the kids should learn from this, is that government tramples on individual liberty.

California Ammo Sales Spike As Background Checks Start Monday, at zerohedge.com. Who would have thought that there would be a run on ammo sales before the background check law was put in place? Incentives and constraints matter in decision making.

Title IX Update OCR Opens Investigations Against Michigan State, Grand Valley State And Saginaw Valley State, by Mark J. Perry, at carpediemblog. Mark J. Perry is using the Title IX Law against the people who love it most.

Inflation: The Soviet Tool For Destroying Money, by Chris Calton, Money printing is the definition of inflation. Excerpt from the article: “Regardless of the policy’s purpose, inflation serves only to distort economic signals and, ultimately, destroy the currency and whatever economy the currency is attached to.

Photos Reveal AOC Was Crying Over An Empty Parking Lot, at zerohedge.com. The Main stream media is the propaganda wing of the Democrat party. And they are not ashamed of it.

Rich-Kid Democrat Staffer Who Doxxed Political Enemies Gets Four Years In Prison,  at zerohedge.com. When politicians and bureaucrats get what they deserve we should be glad.

Blatant Election Rigging: Twitter Wants To Make Sure We Never Have Another President Like Trump, at zerohedge.com. These platforms are editing content. Which means they should not have the legal protection that a platform receives for being a platform.

Insider Blows Whistle & Exec Reveals Google Plan To Prevent “Trump Situation” in 2020, On Hidden Camera, at projectveritas.com. These people are admitting that they are trying to silence the ideology they don’t agree with. They have the freedom to do what they’re doing because they are protected legally when they claim they are a platform. But the second they start to edit content, they are no longer considered a platform. Just take their legal protection as a platform away from them.

Happy 89th Birthday (June 30th) To Thomas Sowell, One of the Greatest Living Economists, by Mark J. Perry, at carpediemblog. This is my favorite author. Thomas Sowell’s writings have influenced me more than any other author. He is amazing at explaining complex concepts to regular people like me. I love this man.

Thomas Sowell – The Origins Of Economic Disparities (watch here)

Still the best at 89 years old. Long live Thomas Sowell.

 

SATIRICAL HEADLINES

California School System To Feature mandatory 2nd Grade Field Trips To Gay Bars, at thebabylonbee.com.

Experts Agree Loser Of First Dem Debate Was America, at babylonbee.com.

In Emergency Bill, House Dems Vote To Send More Fake Tears To Address Border Crisis, at babylonbee.com.

Democratic Candidates Announce Plan To Dangle Stacks Of Cash In Front Of Potential Voters, at babylonbee.com.

 

CARTOONS

From The Burning Platform

Political Cartoons by Bob Gorrell

Political Cartoons by Tom Stiglich

Political Cartoons by Chip Bok

Political Cartoons by Steve Kelley

 

 

 

 

Must Reads For The Week 12/8/18

December 9, 2018

 

Mazie Hirono: “We Democrats Know So Much” That We Tend to Alienate Voters, by Jessica Chasmar, at washingtontimes.com. Here is an excerpt from the article: “One of the things that we Democrats have a really hard time is connecting to people’s hearts instead of here”, Mrs Hirono pointed to her head, “We’re really good at shoving out all the information that touch people here [points to her brain] But not here [points to the heart].”

I hate to inform Mrs Hirono, but it is just the opposite. The only way Democrats win an issue is by playing to people’s emotions. Why? Because they could never win the issues with logic and reasoning.

Thomas Sowell Explains The Economics Of Discrimination, by David Weinberger, at the federalist.com. I am reading Dr. Sowell’s recent book Discrimination and Disparities. This is another great read that is full of information, and of course, Dr Sowell’s brilliant insight and reasoning.

Truth Is What We Hide, Self-Serving Cover Stories Are What We Sell, by Charles Hugh Smith, at oftwominds.com. This is a great article about what insiders in politics, the bureaucracy and the media cover up and what they spin as true.

Lena Dunham’s Return To ‘Believe All Women’ Does Women No Favors, by Daniella Davis, at thefederalist.com. Don’t ‘all women’ have to have some speck of evidence in order to be believed? There is an evidentiary standard in order to be believed when accusing someone of a crime. Why? Because it is a legal matter, even though the legal process of finding guilt in sexual assault cases is now being tried in the political arena. Here is a random thought. If men and women are equal, as we as a society have been told for all these decades, why don’t we here of more instances where women fight their attackers? If men and women are equal, shouldn’t 50% of these assault cases end with the perpetrator having been beaten up. Also, wouldn’t there be fewer assaults for the simple reason men would not be eager to attack someone who could beat them up.

In an unrelated article: Men Begin Avoiding Female Co-Workers In Age Of #MeToo, by Ryan McMaken, at mises.org. I shouldn’t say this but I am. After being told by a woman that all men are pigs, I informed her that it is a good thing that God made men’s sex drive so powerful, because if it wasn’t for that, there is no way men would want to hang around women.

In another unrelated article: Chart Of The Day: The Declining Female Share Of Computer Science Degrees From, 28% to 18%, by Mark J. Perry, at carpediemblog. Men and women are biologically different. and no amount of social engineering will change that reality.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Claims Stopping Climate Change Will End Racism , at zerohedge.com. I am not smart enough to understand how, “stopping climate change will end racism”. So my comment to Alexandria is this; the Democrat party doesn’t want to end racism. The Democrat party needs the issue of racism to maintain its power. The Democrat party also uses the global warming issue to maintain its power. So the Democrats also don’t want the issue of Global warming to go away. Since both issues are needed to maintain power, neither issue will go away. Since both issues can’t be proven as true, only asserted as true, it will be easy to hype both issues for decades to come.

The Elite Are Creating An Authoritarian ‘Beast System’, And Dissenters Could Lose Everything, at zerohedge.com. The internet is turning into a tool of surveillance by Big Brother.

DC Council Bills Taxpayers Half A Million To Avoid Enrolling In Obamacare, by Christopher Jacobs, at thefederalist.com. Do as I say not as I do. Here is an excerpt from the article: “In encouraging others to “get covered,” and promoting the D.C. Health Link Site, DC Mayor Muriel Bowser omitted one key detail: she does not buy the policies the DC Health Link sells. Bowser, like most of her DC council colleagues, received taxpayer-funded insurance subsidies to purchase their coverage through the District government, rather than through DC Health Link. Thus DC spent nearly half a million in taxpayer funds because the mayor ad council won’t be bothered o enroll in Obamacare.”

Why Have Seattle’s Police Become Enforcers For Antifa? at zerohedge.com. The police are not there to pick a side. They are there to enforce the law no matter who breaks it.

Nearly Two-Thirds Of Non-Citizen Households In America Are On Welfare, at zerohedge.com. Taxpayers are paying the cost of not enforcing the immigration laws that are on the books today.

Alberta Orders “Unprecedented” Oil Output Cut To Combat Crashing Prices, at zerohedge.com. American oil producers stop pumping oil if the price of oil can’t cover the cost of production (including a profit). The incremental increase and decrease of the price of oil regulates supply of oil at any particular price. My question is; does the Government of Canada make the decision on how much oil is extracted from the ground or do prices decide what is pumped out of the ground? This seems like a Government created ‘problem’. Oil gluts and oil shortages wouldn’t be as wide ranging if market prices were allowed to incrementally adjust supply and demand instead of letting it be decided by central planners.

French Protestors Fume Over Climate Taxes And A Rising Cost Of living, by Ryan McMaken, at mises.org. Global warming policies are just another way for governments to grow power and fleece their citizens.

The Edict Of Diocletian: A Case Study Of Price Controls And Inflation, by Murray N. Rothbard, at mises.org. The average person in Roman times understood more about what caused inflation than we do today. Today we think that inflation is prices rising. In Roman times they understood (through their actions) that Inflation is the increase in the money supply. Governments clip coins and decreases the amount of gold in each coin they mint in order to finance government spending. Regular people understood this and reacted by paying their taxes with the coins that had less gold in them, and keeping the higher quality coins to use in market exchange. But inflation still reared its ugly head. To combat inflation caused by the Government devaluation of the coins, Emperor Diocletian decided setting price ceilings was the answer. Even this all-powerful Emperor couldn’t stop the shortages that were brought about by his price controls. Nothing was offered for sale and everything was in short supply. Diocletian repealed his price ceiling edict and prices finally stabilized after the Government stopped devaluing the money supply.

I don’t think our Federal Reserve is smart enough to realize they have caused our bubble economy through their money printing. Even if they did realize it, they have no incentive to stop printing money because we the people are ignorant about what money really is. Why? Because we have grown up under a paper money system, not under a commodity (gold or silver) money system. If you want to understand the concept of money read: “What Has Government Done To Our Money” By Murray Rothbard. It is a hand size paperback of 110 pages.

DiMartino Booth: The Fraying Of The Fed’s Fragile Narrative, at zerohedge.com. Danielle DiMartino Booth is a former official of the Dallas Fed. She has keen insight about the workings of this disruptive organization. The Interview is worth watching.

Even The NY Times Thinks Its ‘Curtains For The Clintons’, at zerohedge.com. The small crowds at Clinton speaking tour stops shows the Clintons have out lived their usefulness to the Democrat Party.

“I Know Where All The Bodies Are Buried”: Clinton Foundation CFO Spills Beans To Investigators, at zerohedge.com. I an unrelated story. The Clinton Foundation was nothing more than a money laundering scheme. Mafia money launderers could learn a few things from the Clintons.

 

SATIRICAL HEADLINES

Macron Criticizes Climate Change Tax Protesters For Not Using Carbon-Neutral Rioting Methods, at babylonbee.com

Trump Releases Findings Of Own Independent Investigation: ‘Most Innocent President Ever’, at babylonbee.com.

Report: Mueller To Release Results Of Investigation Day Before 2020 Election, at babylonbee.com.

Frightening Rise In Anti-Semitism Blamed On The Jews, at babylonbee.com.

Should The NFL Prohibit Players From Appearing In Hotel Security Footage? at theonion.com.

 

CARTOONS

Political Cartoons by Steve Kelley

Political Cartoons by Mike Lester

Political Cartoons by Michael Ramirez

 

 

July 4th 2018: Independence Day!

July 4, 2018

Statue of Liberty on the background of flag usa, sunrise and fireworks

I reread the fourth chapter in Thomas Sowell’s book, “The Quest for Cosmic Justice”, every 4th of July. It is a must read. The fourth chapter is titled “The Quiet Repeal of the American Revolution”. I wish what he states about the difference between the American Revolution and all other revolutions was understood by all Americans. Here are some excerpts from this chapter.

“The war for American independence was not simply a landmark event in the history of the United States. It was a landmark in the history of the world – and especially a landmark in the history of the evolution of free and democratic societies. It’s international significance was symbolized by France’s donation of the Statue of Liberty to the Unites States on the one hundredth anniversary of the Declaration of Independence and by the creation of a facsimile of this state in China, more than a century after that, by protesters vainly seeking to create a free and democratic government in that country”

“The American revolution was in some ways the most far-reaching of all the great revolutions in history. Other revolutions may have had more sweeping rhetoric, or greater extremes of violence and terror, or more categorical claims of change. They may even have had more radical changes of personnel, as in the change from czarist to Communist rulers in Moscow, while replacing one form of autocratic despotism with another and more bloody from.”

“The French Revolution of the succeeding decade used similar rhetoric, and was supported by such prominent figures in the American Revolution as Thomas Jefferson and Thomas Paine, but nevertheless the French Revolution was grounded on entirely different assumptions and of course took a different path all to characteristic of later revolutions that began with lofty ideals and ended with new and more ruthless despotism.”

  “The American Revolution, however, went further in rejecting a basic conception of man and society that goes back thousands of years, and which is still with us today…people with the most diverse philosophic persuasions have proceeded as if what was needed was to replace false doctrines with true doctrines and false leaders with true leaders – the heathens with the faithful, capitalists with socialists, royalty with republicans, and so on. But, unlike the French revolution and the Bolshevik revolution, for example, the American revolution and its resulting constitution established was not simply a particular system but a process of changing systems, practices, and leaders, together with a method of constraining whoever or whatever was ascendant at any given time…. it gave to the common man a voice, a veto, elbow room, and a refuge from the rampaging presumptions of his “betters”….. it was seen by others in the world at large as a landmark in the general struggle for human freedom. That is why it must be opposed by those with more ambitious visions (even if they do not consciously feel any animosity against constitutional freedoms) because, on issue after issue, those freedoms stand between the morally self-anointed and the realization of dreams which have overwhelming importance to them. Some of these dreams revolve around the quest for cosmic justice, in which constitutional constraints may be seen as technicalities to be finessed. Other dreams may be about personal ambitions that can be fulfilled only in a very different kind of society from that established by the Constitution… Ego and ideals are of course not mutually exclusive but may readily exist in the same individual, who may even mistake the former from the latter.”

America is an idea. It was based on the pretense that the individual was sovereign. Our founders knew that Government power had to be restrained or else it would be used arbitrarily by politicians and bureaucrats who were in position to wield it. Our Government was established to protect the individual and his property from aggression by other individuals. Those ‘other individuals’ mainly included individuals who were in positions to wield Government power against other individuals. The “idea” of America was: the individual is sovereign over State power.

It is amazing how Americans, especially the elite establishment in and out of government, don’t understand this “idea of America”. People from other countries seem to see the truth about America more clearly.

Here is a video of Bono talking about America being an ‘idea’.

 

OUR LIVES, OUR FORTUNES, OUR SACRED HONOR!

Paul Harvey. From last years 4th of July Post.

 

LETS CELEBRATE AMERICA

 

JIMI HENDRIX: NATIONAL ANTHEM AT WOODSTOCK.

In my opinion there has never been a more moving rendition of the national anthem (Number two is Whitney Houston’s version at the Super Bowl). His guitar making the sounds of ‘the rockets red glare’ and ‘the bombs bursting in air’, and his playing a short version of “Taps” near the end are moving to say the least! This version always makes me tear up with pride and joy about the “Idea” of America.

 

RAY CHARLES:  AMERICA THE BEAUTIFUL.

This version gets me every time.

 

GOD BLESS AMERICA

God bless the ‘Idea’ that America represents.

 

 

Related ArticleWhat Does Independence Day Mean? at austrianaddict.com.

Related ArticleJuly 4th – Our Choice: Liberty Or Tyranny! at austrianaddict.com.

Related ArticleJuly 4th, Declaring Independence From Tyranny, at austrianaddict.com.

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Thomas Sowell: Discrimination and Disparities

May 31, 2018

Thomas Sowell

Thomas Sowell is my favorite author. It was my great fortune to have stumbled upon his books in the mid 90’s. Dr Sowell has the ability to make complex concepts understandable to regular people like you and me. He digs into statistics from various studies and figures out what they reveal and what they do not reveal. He is an economist by trade. This background allows him to see discernible patterns that are hidden to most of us.

His writings have equipped me with a series of questions that I ask myself when confronted with any issue or anyone speaking about an issue. Here are the questions.

– Compared to what?

– At what cost?

-Is what is being compared, comparable?

– And then what?

– Numbers? In what context?

– Can someone be ethical while being political and can someone be unbiased while being an advocate?

– What is important is not what decision should be made? The real question is who is to make the decision? Through what process? Under what incentives and constraints? With what feedback mechanism?

If you remember these questions the chances of being fooled decreases exponentially.

DISCRIMINATION AND DISPARITIES

Although Dr. Sowell does not write his weekly column anymore, fortunately for us he is still writing books.

Dr. Sowell has written a new book titled “Discrimination and Disparities“. Dr. Sowell is being interviewed by Peter Robinson in this interview on Uncommon Knowledge. It will be a great investment of your time to listen to Dr. Sowell in this interview.

Here are some excerpts from the video:

“The fact that economic and other outcomes often differ greatly among individuals, groups, institutions and nations poses questions to which many people give very different answers. At one end of the spectrum…..The belief that those who have been less fortunate…..are genetically less capable. At the other end….. the belief that those less fortunate are victims of other people…..”

“Disparities can also reflect the plain fact that success in many kinds of endeavors depends on prerequisites peculiar to each endeavor and a relatively small differences in meeting those prerequisites can mean a very large difference in outcomes.”

“Professor Turman of Stanford did an empirical study where he picked something like 1500 people who had IQ’s in the top one percent. And he followed them for 50 years to see how they turned out…..The disparaties within that narrow range……the top third had more than ten times as many post grad degrees as the bottom third among people who were all in the top one percent. So there is obviously many other things that had to come together…..The other thing was that two people who failed to make the 140 IQ cut off ended up getting Nobel Prizes in physics, and nobody among the 1500 ever did. So obviously there has to be a lot of things that come together…..”

“The biggest differentiating factor in this study was family backgrounds. The ones who were in the top third came from families who were more educated. The ones who were in the bottom third had a parent who had dropped out of school before the eighth grade. So it doesn’t matter how much brain power you may have, if you are not raised in a home where people are thinking, where they’re doing intellectual things, you are not in the same position as someone with the same IQ who is in a family that has that kind of background. This blows the genetic argument is ruled out-of-bounds in terms of smarts. But so is the argument that anybody victimized them. The principle factors that accounted for success as opposed to failure was family background. That’s not really victimization, that’s a question of almost cosmic luck…. Too many observers….reason as if Intentions automatically translate directly into outcomes.”

The only times over which we have any degree of influence at all are the present and the future. Both of which can be made worse by attempts at symbolic restitution among the living for what happened among the dead who are far beyond our power to help or punish or avenge. Any serious consideration of the world as it is around us today must tell us that maintaining any common decency, much less peace and harmony among living contemporaries, is a major challenge both among nations and within nations. To admit that we can do nothing about what happened among the dead is not to give up the struggle for a better world, but to concentrate our efforts where they have at least some hope of making things better for the living.

 

Related Posts

Thomas Sowell: Wealth, Poverty and Politics, at austianaddict.com.

Thomas Sowell: “Economic Problems Don’t Have Political Solutions”, at austrianaddict.com.

Thomas Sowell: Vision Of The Anointed, at austrianaddict.com.

Thomas Sowell: The Economics And Politics Of Race, at austrianaddict.com.

Michelle Obama vs. Thomas Sowell On The Politics Of Race, at austrianaddict.com.

The ‘Disparate Impact’ Racket By Thomas Sowell, at austrianaddict.com.

Thomas Sowell: Human Capital More Important Than Physical Capital, at austrianaddict.com.

If you type Thomas Sowell in the search box you, will be treated to more of his writings.

Is There A Wage Gap Between Men And Women?

April 4, 2017

The ‘gender pay gap’ is a myth which has been spread for years. I have been reading about this ‘fake cause’ since I can remember. In 1984 Thomas Sowell covered this topic in chapter 5 of his book “Civil Rights: Rhetoric or Reality”.

Here is a Prager University video by Christina Hoff Sommers explaining the statistical fudging that takes place when the gender pay cause becomes bigger than the truth.

THOMAS SOWELL  addresses this topic in my article: “The ‘Equal Pay Day’ Canard” .

In this article titled: Equal Pay Day Is An Annual Event That Spreads Statistical Misinformation About The Gender Pay Gap, by Mark J. Perry, at carpediemblog, Mark J. Perry says choices made about hours worked, type of work, and marriage and motherhood are three of the deciding factors on how much a person is paid. Women and men make different choices in these three areas. When you compare men and women who make the same decisions the wage gap is negligible.

Mark J. Perry’s article titled: “Equal Pay Day’ This Year Is April 4th – The Next ‘Equal Occupational Fatality Day’ Will Be On January 21st 2029, shows how men work in riskier jobs than women. Thirteen men die while working on the job for every one women who dies on the job. Riskier jobs pay more. Choices have consequences.

Ignorance Perpetuates This Myth.

Supposedly smart people are ignorant when it comes to the gender pay gap. Here are two articles showing this ignorance.

The Chief Operating Officer Of Facebook Appears Clueless When It Comes To The Wage Gap, at economicjournal.com.

Ivanka Wage Gap Ignorance, at economicpolicyjournal.com.

We don’t have to be ignorant about issues like this. All we have to do is look beyond the rhetoric of the people pushing the cause.

The Quotable Thomas Sowell

January 5, 2017

Thomas Sowell retired last week from writing his weekly column for Creators Syndicate. I wrote about this earlier in the week in this post ( The Great Tomas Sowell Says Farewell To His Weekly Column ).  Dr. Sowell is my favorite author. I try to read all his stuff, which is difficult because of the staggering amount of material he has written.

Dr. Sowell does two things that are difficult when you write. 1) He makes complex and abstract concepts understandable to regular people like me. 2) He economizes on words while revealing this high degree of insight.

I heard someone say this about a particular writer he admired (I can’t recall who it was). This applies to Dr. Sowell. “I know the same words that he knows, but I can’t put them in the same order that he does“. I am so happy that Dr. Sowell’s mind sees things the way it does. His writing has brought much enjoyment to me over the years.

I have compiled some of my favorite quotes from what he has written. Here are a few.

QUESTIONS?

Here are some questions that Dr. Sowell says should be asked when analyzing a topic or discussing a particular topic with another person.

At What Cost?

Compared To What?

Is What Is Being Compared Comparable?

What Is The Real Question?

And Then What?

Who Is To Make The Decision? Through What Process? Under What Incentives And Constraints? With What Feedback Mechanisms?

PHRASES

Here are some short phrases from Dr. Sowell.

-Economic Problems Don’t Have Political Solutions.

-Perfect Justice Means Perfect Tyranny.

-Virtually Everything Is Foreseeable In Retrospect.

-Every False Diagnosis Of A condition Is An Obstacle to Improvement.

-Feedback Serves To Limit The Impact Of Errors.

-Sober Analysis Seldom Has The Appeal Of Ringing Rhetoric.

-History Is By Definition Tardy.

-Don’t Confuse Causation With Morality.

-It Takes A High I.Q. To Evade The Obvious.

-Many People Have Credentialed Ignorance.

-We Can Only Make Our Choices From Alternatives That Are Actually Available.

-Moderation Is Great, Unless It Is Taken To Extremes.

-What Is True Is Not Always Popular And What Is Popular Is Not Always True.

-Liberalism: Let My Conscience Be Your Guide.

-Everything Is The Same Except For Its Differences; and Everything Is Different Except For Its Similarities.

-The Question Is Not Whether The Glass Is Half Full Or Half Empty. The Question Is, Was The Glass Full Of Empty When You Started?

QUOTES

Here are some longer quotes about economics, freedom and politics.

-The abstract existence of knowledge means nothing unless it is applied at the point of decision or action.

-Knowledge is one of the scarcest of all resources in any economy, and the insight distilled from knowledge is scarcer still.

-Decisions differ because of the internal preferences and the external incentives facing those who make the decisions.

-Results observed at a given point in time may be part of a process that stretches far back in time.

-Envy used to be one of the seven deadly sins before it became one of the most admired virtues under its new name, “Social Justice”.

-The first lesson of economics is scarcity: There is never enough of anything to satisfy all those who want it. The first lesson of politics is to disregard the first lesson of economics.

-History is not a record of people’s articulated intentions being realized so much as it is a record of entirely different things happening as a net result of mutual innumerable strivings toward mutually incompatible goals.

-The God like approach to social policy ignores both the diversity of values and the cost of agreement among human beings.

-Just as a poetic discussion of the weather is not meteorology, so an issuance of moral pronouncements or political creeds about the economy is not economics.

-People who are very aware that they have more knowledge than the average person are often very unaware that they do not have one tenth of the knowledge of all of the average persons put together. In this situation, for the intelligentsia to impose their notions on ordinary people is essentially to impose ignorance on knowledge.

-Any attempt to have rational discourse requires that those with different views have a common language in which to discuss their differences.

-The anointed are on their tiny island of knowledge, surrounded by their sea of ignorance.

-The anointed are insulated from the feedback of uncooperative reality.

-The anointed are often wrong, but never in doubt.

-Intellectuals are masters of the world of unverified plausibilities.

-It takes considerable knowledge just to realize the extent of your own ignorance.

-When you want to help people you tell them the truth. When you want to help yourself, you tell them what they want to hear.

-Wherever we want to go, we can only get there from where we are, not where we think we are. Not where we think we are, or wish we are, or where we want others to think we are, but where we are in fact right now. If we don’t have truth we don’t have anything to start with, and build on. Political spin and pious euphemisms don’t tell us where we are.

-If you have a right to someone else’s approval, than they do not have a right to their own opinions and values.

-The fatal misstep of intellectuals is assuming that superior ability within a particular realm can be generalized as superior wisdom or morality over all.

-The intelligentsia and others always fight phony wars against straw men. Why create a false issue, except to evade the real issue?

-In political competition what is being sold is not an end result, but a plausible belief about a complex process. Ergo accurate knowledge has no such decisive competitive advantage.

-The free market may work vest when there is a level playing field. But politicians win more votes by tilting the playing field to favor particular groups.

-Tests are not unfair. Life is unfair and the test measures the result.

-The test conveys a difference that already exists. It doesn’t create a difference that would not exist otherwise.

-People have to be aware of the dangers in letting economic decisions be made through political processes.

-The argument for Socialism, it sounds great; the argument against it, it doesn’t work.

-Anyone can be wrong about the future. But being wrong about the past is something else.

-If an informed citizenry is the foundation of democratic government, than an uninformed citizenry is a danger.

-Systemically evolved freedom in Colonial America later became intentionally preserved freedom in the Constitution of the United States.

-Constitutional guarantees encumber the state precisely so that the state may not encumber the people.

-More severe penalties that are not enforced are not as good as less sever penalties that are enforced.

-Lowering standards for those unable to meet them only endangers the very benefits those standards produce. Standards do not exist for no reason.

-Freedom has always been embattled where it has not been wholly crushed.

-A border dispute between Ohio and Indiana does not keep us from knowing that Columbus is in Ohio and Indianapolis is in Indiana.

-Each ethnic group tends to trail the long shadow of its own cultural history, as well as reflecting the consequences of external influences.

-Wealth in the U.S. is not distributed at all. People create it, earn it, save it, and spend it.

-Survival in the market often requires recognizing mistakes and changing course, while survival in politics often requires denying mistakes, continuing the current policies and blaming the bad consequences on others.

-Free markets efficiently allocate scarce resources which have alternative uses. This results in higher standards of living for society as a whole, along with unequal rewards to individuals, industries and regions.

-The effectiveness of the market does not depend on Government officials or intellectuals understanding it.

-The biggest difference between economic decisions in the market, and political decisions in Government is that costs are an inescapable factor in economic decisions, while political decisions can ignore costs.

-Voluntary decision-making processes have many advantages which are lost when courts attempt to prescribe results, rather than define decision-making boundaries.

-Nothing is easier than to confuse broader powers with deeper insight. But almost by definition, those with the broadest powers are the most remote from the specific knowledge needed for either deciding or for knowing the actual consequences of their decisions.

-Sometimes the ascribed status to a particular group is preferential, so that sorting and labeling that is biased in the proscribed direction is legal but any bias in a different direction is not.

-The word “crisis” has virtually become a political synonym for “situation” and indicates little more than something that someone wants to change.

-Social crusaders are not forced to confront the consequences of their choices, even in their own minds, or consciences, much less pay a tangible price for he havoc they leave in their wake while feeling noble.

-Many complaints that some basically good Government policy has been applied stupidly may fail to address the Underlying problem of catagorical laws in an incremental world.

-Nothing human has ever achieved perfection. So the fact that intellectuals can always imagine something better than the vest that exists in reality is hardly surprising.

-Justice of any sort, criminal justice as well as so-called “social justice”, implies the imposition of a given standard on people with different standards.

-What is politically defined as economic planning is the forcible superseding of other people’s plans by Government officials.

-The claim that costs are “prohibitive” is to miss the whole point of costs, which is precisely to be prohibitive. Costs transmit inherent limitations of resources compared to the desires for them, but do not create this fundamental disproportionately.

-All costs are prohibitive to some degree, and virtually no costs are prohibitively absolutely.

-Where prices are set by Government fiat, they convey no information as to ever-changing economic trade-offs…. Price changes are virtually instantaneous, while statistics available to planners necessarily lag behind.

-If prosperity could come only from the united efforts of upright and noble-minded people, all of mankind would still be sunk in poverty.

-Everyone must live in the world of reality. To the extent that reality has been filtered to fit a vision, this filtered information is a misleading guide to making decisions in an unforgiving reality, to which we must all adjust because it is not going to adjust to us.

-The same man is not equal to himself on different days, much less at different periods of life.

 

If this seems like a lot, this is just the tip of the iceberg. If you can remember some of these statements by Dr Sowell, especially the questions that should constantly be asked, you will start seeing the world through a different lens.