09 May 2016

Apocalyptic Times

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Durer4Horsemeb

David Goodman aka Spengler finds plenty of cause for gloom in this year’s international election season.

Marx was wrong when he quipped that great history appears twice, first as tragedy and again as farce. He forgot surrealism.

Who would have expected the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse to present them themselves in the personages of a billionaire reality-show star, an aging Vermont hippy, a Glock-toting Austrian rightist and a British-born Pakistani who “sucked up to extremist Muslims” through most of his career. I refer to the presumptive Republican nominee for president, the second-place candidate for the Democratic nomination, the likely next president of Austria and the just-elected Mayor of London. These are portents of the future, like comets or two-headed calves.

The lives of perhaps two billion people around the world are going pear-shaped, and the great battles of our time are not about the allocation of scarce resources, but of abundant misery. …

The Trump voters and the Sanders voters have a common view of the world, which is that someone else must suffer for them to benefit; they differ on who should pay (Chinese and Mexicans vs. the wealthy). No-one will tell the American Millennials that they were sold a trillion-dollar fraud in the form of university education, and no-one will tell their aging parents that never again will Americans be paid for being Americans. No-one will tell the Europeans that it doesn’t really matter what immigration policy they choose: if they do not have children, soon enough their lands will belong to migrants from Africa and the Middle East. In politics, it doesn’t pay to be the bearer of evil tidings, as in Robert Frost’s poem: “As for his evil tidings, Belshazzar’s overthrow,/Why hurry to tell Belshazzar What soon enough he would know?”

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SDD

And when will someone tell the world that the powerful forces that have caused the climate to change periodically for millions of years cannot be controlled by government bureaucracies determined to tax their people into submission?



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