Pinstriped Nazis

In America, “Pinstriped Nazis” play baseball in the Bronx or play with money in Manhattan. In Germany, its the name for people that dissent from the prevailing religion of the ruling class of Europe. This story from The Tired Old Commie Times should be getting more attention.

Its members have been dubbed the “pinstriped Nazis” and they refer to their demonstrations as “evening strolls” through German cities. But on Monday night, an estimated 15,000 people joined Pegida, or Patriotic Europeans Against Islamisation of the West, in a march through Dresden carrying banners bearing slogans such as “Zero tolerance towards criminal asylum seekers”, “Protect our homeland” and “Stop the Islamisation”.

Lutz Bachmann, the head of Pegida, a nascent anti-foreigner campaign group, led the crowds, either waving or draped in German flags, in barking chants of “Wir sind das Volk”, or “We are the people”, the slogan adopted by protesters in the historic “Monday demonstrations” against the East German government in the runup to the fall of the Berlin Wall.

Associating themselves with the freedom demonstrations has given Pegida protests an air of moral respectability even though there are hundreds of rightwing extremists in their midst, as well as established groups of hooligans who are known to the police, according to Germany’s federal office for the protection of the constitution.

What’s hilarious about hearing old lefties talk about “hooligans” disrupting the peace with their protests is it was not that long ago when these same lefties were the ones in the streets being called hooligans. They will tell you it was different because their enemies were right wing extremists and these protesters are right-wing extremists. The near total lack of self-awareness by the old fools at The Guardian is always good for some laughs.

While avoiding blatantly racist slogans, some told the Guardian of their angst over the “demise of the West” due to the rise of Islam or voiced their distaste of salafists and homosexuals in the same breath, or decried the recent decision by local politicians to increase the number of homes for asylum seekers. One group, knocking back bottles of the local beer, talked openly of their fears of what they call “fecal jihad”.

Mario Lupo, a 40-year-old tourist from Milan, was among the onlookers sipping glühwein at Germany’s oldest Christmas market, the Striezelmarkt.

“We came here for the romance and joviality of the Christmas markets,” he said. “We expected some light-hearted carousing appropriate to this time of year, but didn’t expect to stumble upon these rabble-rousers and police in riot gear.”

Among the groups taking part, according to the police, were two soccer hooligan organisations already known to the police called “Faust des Ostens” (Fist of the East) and Hooligans Elbflorenz (Florence of the Elbe Hooligans), as well as members of the National Democratic Party (NPD). Alongside them were old and young men and women, including families with children in pushchairs, many of whom said they had no political affiliation.

The reason it is useful to view the Left as a religious cult is they display all the same tendencies. The extreme paranoia is one of the more obvious features. The fact that the overwhelming majority of the people protesting are garden variety Germans is seen as proof that they are really “extreme right-wing extremists.” They’re just carefully avoiding use the racist slogans, but the good people at The Guardian see right through it!

Pegida’s growing presence has presented politicians with a dilemma over how to uncouple the strong neo-Nazi element believed to form the core of the protests from ordinary Germans with grievances against the government, who make up the bulk of the protesters.

Almost two-thirds of Germans, according to a poll for news magazine Spiegel by the TNS institute, believe that Angela Merkel’s government is not doing enough to address concerns about immigration and asylum seekers, and 34% think Germany is enduring a process of “Islamisation”.

The chancellor had earlier warned that a right to demonstrate did not extend to “rabble-rousing and defamation” against foreigners.

Merkel said that those participating in the protests should “take care not to be exploited” by radical elements trying to tap into fears of a foreigner takeover in Germany.

If you only read American media, you would never know that most of Europe is boiling with anti-immigration sentiment. Just as in the United States, Europe and Britain have had enough with wholesale immigration. In that regard I’ll give The Guardian credit for actually reporting it. I’d be curious to know if the mainstream German press has bothered to report on any of this, other than to decry it as fascism.

Still, the fact that the Nazis in charge are calling these protesters “Pinstriped Nazis” says a lot about the ruling class of Germany. The Nazis may have been vanquished, but their ideas about government, economics and culture carried the day in the West, All of us now live in a world run by the intellectual sons and daughters of Carl Schmitt. They are the real pinstriped Nazis and they even wear pinstripes!

I suspect a lot of patriotic Americans will look at what’s going on in Europe and think the tide is turning. I’m not so sure. The flow of history seems to be away from small organizational groups and towards larger and larger political entities. The foundation stone of Europe is the end of nations. Without nations, there can be no citizens. Without citizens, why should the rulers care if Dresden is populated with Turks, Celts or Martians? Dresden is not a place with an identity. It is an area where natural resources are stored for use by the ruling class.

Maybe there’s a biological limit that we are reaching and a great contraction is upon us. Human biology does seem to preclude one world government. People rebel against rulers that do not look like they are from their gene pool. Colonialism failed, despite being the best thing to happen to the colonized. Humans simple don’t trust people that are not their blood or at least resemble their blood. 50,000 years of evolution is tough to beat, even if you spent a summer at college in a philosophy seminar.

Still, The way to bet seems to be with the people currently in charge.

It’s a Cult

I’ve been calling American Liberalism a cult for a long time. I get some grief for it from normal people, because they think I’m engaging in name calling. There’s some truth to it. The word cult has some baggage. We typically think of cults having a leader, a person who is worshiped. That leader is more than a little nuts and eventually leads his followers to a Jonestown like end. Of course, this the point at which right thinking people begin to see I’m probably right about these people. The messianic nature of American Liberalism is not always obvious, but it’s right there if look hard at the Left.

Modern times and the trendiness of the Left means their various beliefs burst forth for a while and then recede into the background, only to come around again with a new marketing pitch. State rationed health care is a good example. The American Left has been dreaming of it since they discovered Bismark. Every ten years or so they have a new way to pitch having their cult decide how much and how often you get medical treatment.

The cultish properties of American Progressives is clear in the story of ObamaCare. It was supposed to be the final step into the Eden of free health care for all. The rank and file members of the Cult of Modern Liberalism were convinced that a fountain of unlimited health care was hidden away somewhere, maybe next to the golden plates Joseph Smith found out west. If they could slay the evil insurance monsters that guard it, the people would be free to dip their cups into it and get all the health care they desired – free! They used different words, but that was the sales pitch and they truly believed it. They still do.

Then reality, that thing that does not go away when you stop believing in it, came roaring into the room. Millions saw their policies canceled. I’m on my third cancellation. Rates went up and the public went crazy. As was described in When Prophecy Fails, the Left was at first stunned into silence. The disconfirmation was soul crushing. Instead of Eden, the result was chaos. Then, the faithful rallied and they are now ready to proselytize once again.

You’re looking at the biggest story involving the federal budget and a crucial one for the future of the American economy. Every year for the last six years in a row, the Congressional Budget Office has reduced its estimate for how much the federal government will need to spend on Medicare in coming years. The latest reduction came in a report from the budget office on Wednesday morning.

The changes are big. The difference between the current estimate for Medicare’s 2019 budget and the estimate for the 2019 budget four years ago is about $95 billion. That sum is greater than the government is expected to spend that year on unemployment insurance, welfare and Amtrak — combined. It’s equal to about one-fifth of the expected Pentagon budget in 2019. Widely discussed policy changes, like raising the estate tax, would generate just a tiny fraction of the budget savings relative to the recent changes in Medicare’s spending estimates.

In more concrete terms, the reduced estimates mean that the federal government’s long-term budget deficit is considerably less severe than commonly thought just a few years ago. The country still faces a projected deficit in future decades, thanks mostly to the retirement of the baby boomers and the high cost of medical care, but it is not likely to require the level of fiscal pain that many assumed several years ago.

The reduced estimates are also an indication of what’s happening in the overall health care system. Even as more people are getting access to health insurance, the costs of caring for individual patients is growing at a super-slow rate. That means that health care, which has eaten into salary gains for years and driven up debt and bankruptcies, may be starting to stabilize as a share of national spending.

You see? The prophesies were true! The prophesies were true! The Great Pumpkin will bring free health care for all!

Keep in my that this what “data driven journalism” really means. It is the old time religion sprinkled with statistics. To the faithful, “data” are a topping, like jimmies on an ice cream sundae. The “data” presented here are both fanciful and useless. The threat to Medicare is not cost per patient. The threat is the number of patients when the Boomer retirement is in full bloom. Driving the cost per patient down a few bucks is nothing when the number of patients is growing geometrically.

But, that’s how it goes in a cult. They need to believe and so they will always believe. It took 100 million corpses and 150 years for Communism to finally die. In my youth, American lefties would say that communism was never really tried and that Bolshevism was not true Marxism. I don’t think they were ever convinced to drop it. The Left just decided to go with Cultural Marxism, figuring the economics would take care of itself.

Modern Sophistry

One of the things you always see with reformers and left-wing critics is the phenomenon of Chesterton’s fence. That’s the principle that reforms should not be made until the reasoning behind the existing state of affairs is understood. The reformer and liberal critic never bothers to understand why the current state of affairs. They just want it gone and have no interest in why it exists. The reformer and radical is always the jury of one, where their whims trump all evidence to the contrary.

Homosexual marriage is the most obvious example. The advocates never asked why marriage has been boy-girl for ten thousand years. Instead they mutter some nonsense about religion, but that’s as far as they go. Libertarians are the worst offenders. When they start ranting about the state licensing marriage, they act like it sprung from nothingness. Their own ignorance is held up as if it were a mirror, reflecting a newly discovered hole in conventional wisdom. A good example is in this post.

I have a question that has only provoked a lot of confused righteous indignation in other forums, and I wonder if TBQ readers might have more thoughtful responses, if we phrase it as a logic puzzle.

My question: I don’t see why it’s good policy to give criminal defendants a Fifth Amendment right to silence in their own trial, as opposed to giving them the same rights and obligations as third-party witnesses (who can be subpoenaed and required to answer questions).

Notice how his ignorance of civics and the history behind this priovision in the law is treated as an asset in his argument. That would be fine if it were just an admission and a plea for help. Instead, it is wrapped in indignation, as if it is the fault of the rest of us that this guy does not know basic civics. The implication is that the Fifth Amendment is illogical because the author does not understand why it exists. The burden is now on everyone else to alleviate him of his ignorance.

This is a common trick from radicals pushing some cause. They frame their own ignorance as a sort of universal ignorance that they have just stumbled upon. Having discovered this hitherto unobserved irrationality, they offer up an alternative and then challenge everyone else to 1) justify the current arrangements or 2) offer an alternative to their proposal that they think is better. It’s rhetorical base stealing that turns their novel idea into the default, while convention is the novelty.

However, every time I’ve asked this question, people have reacted as if I was suggesting that the state should be allowed to torture people into confessing. Obviously that’s not what I’m asking. I just don’t see a principled reason why defendants can’t be required to answer a question that is relevant, subject to the rules laid out in paragraph 3.

Notice the claim that his innocent query has stumped the brightest minds on earth. He has yet to get the answer he likes, so that means no answer exists. The use of neutralized logic phrases is particularly annoying. “Obviously that’s not what I’m asking” avoids the charge, without ever addressing it. It also makes it appear the invisible audience to whom he is referring is irrational. The poor guy is an island of rationality in a sea of mean spirited loons!

The funny part is that he is suggesting the state torture people into confessing. Maybe he knows that and that’s why he is shifting the focus from what he is suggesting onto straw men. If the state can punish you for lying to agents of the state and they can force you to answer questions, the honest answering of which could lead to punishment, the state is compelling you to bear witness against yourself. Anyway, the comments are worth reading. Comment #6 takes the author’s tactic and turns it around on him.

You’ve done a good job of comparing fifth amendment rights to the ability of the state to subpoena third parties. It makes perfect sense to me that if it’s acceptable for state to subpoena third parties, it should also be acceptable to subpoena the accused. I hold the position that the state should NOT be able to subpoena the accused OR third parties though. To convince me, you’ll need to provide good reasons why the state should have this particular coercive power in the first place.

I don’t think it is intentional. This sort of sophistry is so common, people do it without even knowing it now. All logic expressions imply a set of conditions that would make them false. For instance, all men are human is a logical expression. To falsify this, we would need a man who is not human. That does not mean it can be falsified. There are scientific fast that cannot be falsified, because they are axioms.

What the modern sophist does is insert taste or opinion into the search for truth. “Vanilla ice cream is the best” is not true statement. Everyone knows that. All swans are white, however, is a logical statement. Bolting on “you have to convince me that all swans are white” invalidates the logical expression. Of course, it sets up a standard that can never be met. The judge in this case can simply claim you have to convinced him, no matter how much evidence is stacked up in your favor.

Putting it together you get what looks like a deductive examination of an existing rule, law or custom. What you really get is ignorance framed as a question and a petulant demand from the questioner. It is not an affirmative argument or even a logical expression. It’s a temper tantrum, except the performance of it shifts the focus from the person having the tantrum onto something self. It’s performance art.