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Old 09-21-2010, 02:05 AM
Baltimoron Baltimoron is offline
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Default Re: Big Government Libertarianism (Glenn Loury & Jim Pinkerton)

Originally Posted by TwinSwords View Post
What part of Pinkerton's argument was racist?
Aside from Woodward's insight into the northern Progressive alliance with southern "Progressives" in the period Pinkerton alludes to, Pinkerton as much as says he wants to limit Hispanic immigration, and never mentions African-Americans. I would argue immigration is now a dog whistle for racism. And, maybe if my South Korean students didn't believe that households in the American South own guns to kill Asian tourists, some of those East Asian wunderkind would come to learn English and stay to work. I teach these kids English, because they want to study and imitate Hollywood culture. But, they all tell me repeatedly how most Americans are technologically and culturally retarded and racist. Restricting immigration would inflate the economy at least as much as kow-towing to the unions he despises. I would rather espouse a multi-cultural progressivism, that includes democratic institutions for all individuals, if we have to pay extra for groceries. I'd rather someone know, that he/she had a voice in deciding to manufacture a given product, rather than accept that he/she can make it but not buy it. And then, there's the demographic time bomb, if younger immigrants don't replace an older population.

Originally Posted by TwinSwords View Post
I happen to think he's right, though, that it would be a wise use of our national wealth to invest in national infrastructure. Ten years ago we could have done this by wiring the nation with fiber optics and high speed networks. But building a hundred nuke plants is a great idea, too.

Part of what the libertarians fail to grasp is that American industry could not compete in a free market. The agriculture and aviation industries are classic examples: both are so heavily subsidized in Europe that if the US government didn't dramatically intervene in the markets in the US, both industries would flounder, or vanish. Unfortunately, a child's view of economics, a view so simple it can be spelled out on a 3x5 card, is no substitute for understanding the complexities of 21st century economy.
I'm beginning to think actually, that a technocratic fix like what you advocate is not half bad. But, as I said above, the only way to fix the excesses of interest group pluralism - the lop-sided "intervention" is the result - is to build democratic institutions beyond the constitutional skeleton the US has. perhaps, the favored few now might not get their piece of the pie they enjoy now if more groups got a bigger slice. But, at least everyone would have a stake in the system, and get a reward equal to their contribution.
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