American Culture

If I wanted America to fail…

On Earth Day (which was Sunday – keep up) the inchoately titled Free Market America … er, foundation, released a video entitled, “If I wanted America to fail” in which they tackle the knotty subject of climate change and carbon pricing through the medium of a patronising preppie grossly oversimplifying a complex problem.

No, please, go ahead and watch:

This gave me an idea. I gathered the rabble who comprise the Scroguery and suggested we respond. I assumed we’d all tackle the points raised in the video. Instead – being the free-minded gentlefolk we are – each has taken his/her own approach. Feel free to offer your own response to the video in the comments.

Otherwise

If I wanted America to fail, I would institute an endless number of foreign wars, pitching all of them as essential to freedom. This will create a massive public expenditure, too massive for any nation to bear, as France in the 1700’s, England in the 1800’s, and Russia in the 1900’s found out.

I would replace science, math and facts with slanted opinions, and teach kids that truth is whatever they or their ministers want it to be. This will, over time, effectively kill off entire sectors of our knowledge industry, leaving us strong in missile technology, but weak in life sciences, just like N. Korea.

I would reverse the trend to secularity which has brought mankind so far so fast, and re-institute religious dominated societies so we can be more like Iran and Afghanistan. I would replace science with superstition.

I would encourage a winner-takes-all economy, so that wealth, power and opportunity accumulate in an increasingly smaller segment of society, so that talent and IQ is wasted, and so that we are led by those bred to lead, not by those who earned the right. I would starve public schools and invest in private schools.

I would relax pollution laws, so we become more like Rio or Mexico City, and our children grow up smaller and not quite as smart.

I would keep commodities, like energy, artificially cheap, so people don’t have to fret about things like efficiency, making us more like Venezuala.

I would shut down immigration, because while looting the world for its best and brightest and hardest working has made this country great and pushed us far ahead of other resource rich countries like Canada and Australia, now it threatens to make the lazy and less gifted uncomfortable.

Cat White

If I wanted America to fail, I would encourage homogeneity.

I would give in to the Christian Right and back their agenda of making this a truly Christian country. I would discourage other faiths by offering up exclusively Christian prayers at every civic event and meeting, recruiting primarily Christian chaplains for the armed forces, and prohibiting tax-exempt status to non-Christian or non-credal churches. I would base our foreign and domestic policies on a narrow interpretation of the Bible.

I would give in to the nativists and back their agenda to discourage immigration. Legal immigration should be strictly limited to acceptable ethnic groups who will be most easily assimilated: Christians and Europeans (or those of European descent). I would round up all of the illegal immigrants, using every law enforcement and military resource at my disposal, and repatriate them en masse. They can “appeal” from where they came from. I would block those who cannot prove their citizenship from medical care, education, jobs, and housing. I would make the stigma of being illegal something that carries over to their children: no more citizenship by right of “jus soli.”

I would give in to those who want traditional roles for men and women. I would end programs that encourage women to pursue unnatural careers and vocations, such as Title 9. I would encourage a two-tiered pay system for men and women to encourage men to appreciate and embrace their devalued role as Breadwinners, Fathers, and Heads of Households. I would end public support for early childhood education, preschool, and childcare to encourage women to perform their primary function: stay-at-home moms. I would outlaw contraception, divorce, and prohibitions against domestic violence. I would reinstate the term “bastard” on the birth certificates of the illegitimate and work to stigmatize them and their mothers. I would reinstate sodomy laws and restore the ability of employers, landlords, and social institutions to discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation to force homosexuals back into their closets. I would repeal anti-bullying legislation so that kids can keep their potentially-homosexual classmates in line.

Dr. Denny

If I wanted America to fail, I would shutter the nation’s journalism schools and replace them with massive federal funding for public relations and advertising programs. I would fund Offices of Public Indoctrination for all those would write about political affairs. Perceived value of governments and corporations would take precedence in public utterances over actual value.

All bloggers and Twitter account holders would be liable for the accuracy of their writings according to governmental perceived-value standards.

I would demand that corporations be entitled to preview any article in which they are mentioned, no matter if the mention is incidental. I would dispose of state and federal shield laws. I would repeal the First Amendment.

Children in pre-school would be taught ad nauseum that information is owned by governments and corporations.

And aren’t we halfway there?

Sam Smith

If I wanted America to fail, I’d erode the traditional commitment to strong public education upon which the nation’s greatness was built.

I’d make the education mission accountable to the financial interests of corporations and the wealthy instead of to the needs of the people and the democracy. I’d begin by implementing curricular reforms that emphasized rote memorization and the performance short-term, repetitive tasks and I’d eliminate any and all functions which led to the cultivation of critical thinking and core problem solving skills.

I’d make “efficiency” a core metric for evaluating the success of any school, program or system and I’d insist on “accountability” in the form of extensive testing and I’d implement hiring, compensation and management processes designed to discourage career educators. After all, the sort of education the country requires can be handily executed by entry-level teachers looking to gain practical work experience before moving on to more lucrative jobs. This way, we would assure that our nation’s schools were producing graduates ideally suited to the demands of employers, maximizing standardization while minimizing the disruptive social influence of liberal educational philosophies.

I’d make sure that education was expensive. Again, a new entrant into the economy facing decades in service to student loan debt is more easily managed and more generally compliant than a worker unburdened by pressing financial concerns.

Since educational failures are self-replicating – an ignorant population is more easily duped, more willingly misled, thereby making each successive generation more amenable to manipulation – each victory makes the next battle easier than the one that came before it. Over time, I’d begin leveraging the less critical, less educated public’s increasing conviction that the business of America is business and that the government is the source of all problems. Working hand in hand with my allies on the social right, I’d further undercut progressive forces in society, such as the science and research sectors, by enabling the introduction of “intelligent design” into formal curricula and fostering the idea that “controversial” ideas like climate disruption (which is perceived as dangerous by the nation’s industrial hegemony) should be “debated” until consensus can be reached. A suitably dis-educated populace will be unable to discern when I subsequently move the goalposts on these “debates.”

The end result? An easily manipulated population that serves the interests of a neo-feudal social and economic order.

Lex

If i wanted America to fail, i’d create a series of myths about what made America great and which conveniently ignored any facets of history that ran contrary to my narrative. I would politicize every aspect of life, and establish politics as a moral battle between good and evil. I would invoke God, to lend fire and brimstone to the moral battle set as party politics. I would become inflexible, and i would see people of different ideas as my enemy. I would dehumanize my political enemies. I would attempt to establish the belief that my enemy is the cause of all of America’s problems.

If i wanted America to fail, i would look only to my mythical American history as a guide to building the future. I would sacrifice my children and grandchildren on the altar of my own comfort and ephemeral wealth. I would indoctrinate them with my narrow world view and hope that they too ignore the wealth of knowledge found in science and a developed, rational mind. I would keep them tight in the bosom of a religion that required blind obedience to implausible histories.

If i wanted America to fail, i would trade the Republic for an Empire. I would throw away my civil liberties for the illusion of security from an illusory threat. I would turn the temple of democracy over to the moneychangers and pretend that they’re doing God’s work. I would elect corrupt leaders who act a part in the moral battle between good and evil, and i would continue to believe their personas even after all evidence showed “good” and “evil” to be working together.

If i wanted America to fail, i’d listen to and share stupid shit from organizations like FreeMarketAmerica.org. And i would go to the polls and vote for Democrats or Republicans.

Chris Mackowski

If I wanted America to fail, I’d opiate the masses through entertainment and media—anything to circumvent the kind of free thinking necessary for responsible, effective self-governance.

I would use the media to turn governance itself into a form of entertainment, distracting the majority of potential voters and disgusting the rest—creating the impression that governance is irrelevant and not worth participating in, thereby disenfranchising them.

I would encourage a media environment that promoted financial incentive over public trust, sacrificing what people need to hear in favor of what they want to hear.

I would encourage uses of technology that allowed us to work more instead of just working better, emphasizing quantity of work rather than quality of life.

Gavin Chait

Where the declaration that free markets will solve everything fails is in the pricing of externalities. A company does not set out to produce pollution or waste in the production of their products or services; it is a by-product. Where that by-product is of neutral or positive benefit, no-one pays any attention (a bit like people turning up at their local restaurants to get the used cooking oil to turn into biofuel). Where that by-product is of negative consequence then it is essential that it be priced. If that by-product has no financial value to anyone, but a negative impact on society, then it is up to regulators to impose a market on that good.

Only then can the free market do its work, much as it did in solving the problem of excess sulphur production by industry

If the best scientific minds have proven that excess CO2 production will have, and is having, a detrimental impact on society then it is up to regulators to find a mechanism of pricing that cost into production. Certainly, it would be helpful if politicians did not lie about the costs of this intervention. It can’t fall on suppliers without also falling on consumers.

But the free market cannot price a good that is not sold, and it cannot produce efficiencies on something that is – by design – costless.

Wufnik

If I wanted America to fail, I would…do absolutely nothing.

Dr. Sidicious Bonesparkle

What Wufnik said.

42 replies »

  1. This is a strawman response to the Christian right and neoconservatives, not free markets. A bunch of economically illiterate demagogues invoking a false dichotomy. I recommend you all head over to mises.org or some other actual free market website with information to educate yourselves before you post such uninformed rabble.

      • Interesting. The Free Market America web site is down. Also, Twitter has suspended their account, although I haven’t figured out why yet. Not sure if the events are somehow related or what, if anything, they mean.

      • Also, Luke: “straw man” is when you make up a hypothetical bogeyman that embodies traits that are not reflected in an actual person. It doesn’t apply when you’re describing objective reality and the actions of actual people and organizations.

        Finally, I know that the video wants us to talk only about “free markets,” but the simple (and again, objective) facts are that the purveyors of the dynamics indicted in this post are all on the same team. They vote the same way, they caucus together, and most critically, their checks are written by the same folks. Free Market America is a cynical ploy that wraps itself in pretty language and seeks to raise a lot of other boats by association. If they win, the neocons and social conservatives win automatically.

        Just because you don’t understand strategy doesn’t mean that everybody else has to play dumb.

  2. I feel left out of this conversation because well, given our record, I want America to fail. Perhaps we can combine all these things into a coherent vision that promotes rapid collapse? The ‘failure’ of America is probably a gift to the rest of the world. Let’s go broke so we can’t invade or threaten other countries. Let’s go broke so we can’t subsidize corporations. Let’s go broke so the security state starves for budgets.

  3. Spewing Intellectualism as a way to block argument from an opposing opinion will never garner understanding between the two parties. I see this again and again with the left and it leaves me thinking, ‘who are you trying to talk to?’ Your audience only ends up being those who agree with you already. Volleying insults to others that don’t share your opinions comes off like a 2nd grade who got ahold of a dictionary and thinks he is going to hold everyone captive by his incomprehensible blather. No real understanding is ever going to take place under such circumstance. From the outside, it just looks like a pissing war of, who has the most complicated words and scenarios to impressive themselves.

    • Anonymous: I freakin’ LOVE this response. First you announce yourself as an anti-intellectual, and then you claim today’s top prize for Utter Lack of Self-Awareness with this: “Volleying insults to others that don’t share your opinions comes off like a 2nd grade who got ahold of a dictionary and thinks he is going to hold everyone captive by his incomprehensible blather.” Because “2nd grade” and “blather” aren’t insults at all.

      It’s wonderful when people help me make my point.

  4. Samuel – your argument(since free marketers and neo-cons are both Republicans, being for free markets inherently means being for neo-cons is Invalid. Unless by the same “guilt by association” you will say that being pro-woman choice is the same as being pro-communism since both are voters and part of the Democratic party.

    And no, I’m not saying that all “liberals” are communist, just pointing out the fact that most modern Marxists vote democrat and that the communist party of America runs candidates through the Democratic Party.

    • Ariel: No. It isn’t guilt by association at all. It would be that if all we had to go on was that they tended to vote along the same lines. That is not the case. These organizations are by and large PAID FOR by the same checkbooks. Their strategies emerge from the same think tanks. They are, in just about every sense, the same people.

      Put another way, they are best understood not as different organizations with shared objectives, but as closely related departments within the same organization.

  5. Samuel: the same holds true for Sorros and labor unions – it is still guilt by association.

    It is true that some(if not most) of the free market oriented think-tanks are funded by the same people(namely the koch brothers) but your “If I wanted America to fail” Detailing “foreign war” and other neo-con ideas elegantly ignore the fact the both CATO and REASON opposed the Iraq war(and also a long war in Afghanistan). not to mention the MISES INSTITUTE.

    Also, I would argue that by focusing on the funding of these think-tanks and the ideas they spread you are shifting the discussion away from the ideas themselves and also label every supporter or intellectual who espouses such ideas as “corrupt” or a “corporate hog” is a dirty, mostly false tactic. I am a supporter of these ideas and I promise you that I have never received any corporate funding. I wish I had of course, cause boy I would love me some money.

    By the same principle I would call anyone pro-solar power a “tax thief” for the 500 million dollars down the drain for Solyndra.

  6. Ariel: You object to broadly labeling people and then you do it yourself. My father was pro-solar while he was still a Republican in the early 70s. He was NEVER a tax thief.

    If you’re going to write some rules, please play by them.

  7. You misunderstood me completely – I said that the principle of association of free-marketers and free-market think-tanks with the Iraq war and social conservatism is the same as associating all Pro-Solar as tax thieves because of Solyndra and other boondoggles.

    I object to both. I much rather attack and support ideas by ideas, and not by saying something like “Oh you want to conserve the environment? why not just deport me to a gulag?!” – It is the equivalent of “Oh you want to remove regulations? Why not just burn crosses?!”

    • Ariel: this philosophy works fine as far as philosophy goes. It’s a nice principle. But in the real world, it runs smack up against some ugly realities – to wit, issue A and issue B have been concocted by the same lab and their political lives are being bankrolled by the same people.

      Do you find this on the “left” side of the aisle? To some degree and in some instances, although you, like every conservative alive, DRAMATICALLY overestimates the spending of Mr. Soros. Especially when compared to the spending of similar types on the right. Still, yes, if you identify the folks who are pro-choice activists and the folks who are, say, pro-green energy, you’ll find a lot of overlap.

      The thing is, you won’t hear me pretending that there isn’t a relationship. Of course there is. Different issues entirely, but I imagine the voting correlation is fairly strong and there may be people out there financially supporting both causes.

  8. I am reminded of something I was told by a political science professor way back in the mid-60s his name was T.J. Auston. He explained that one of the most difficult thing for many intellectual to do was not to Tried to convince people around you that you know everything about the subject. Spoke on when you know very little. Oh to be young again and completely idealistic now guess who I’m talking about! There is some wisdom given in the book of Isaiah where it says “come let us reason together”but that there would be no intellectual banter. Isn’t that what some of us before.

  9. Samuel: first of all, I am not a conservative – I am a libertarian.
    Your argument about philosophy versus the real world is a valid one and it can be applied of course to any social-economic system: from Anarcho-Capitalisem to Communisem. But this is not our argument.
    We are not arguing about the degree or the scope of capitalism or socialism or anything similar.

    What I am arguing is that by grouping together “free-marketers”, namely the think-tanks involved with the subject like CATO, REASON, MISES and the likes with Neo-Con Ideals like an “American Empire” or an all WASP society is, to put it nicely, intellectual malpractice – or to be blunt: bullshit.

    If the video was something along the lines of “If I wanted America to fail… I would make sure gays could wed, I would stop sending troops overseas, I would outlaw churches etc.” then your “comeback” in this article would be valid and I would, by the way, back you up one hundred and ten percent.

    Mark – I did not understand anything from what you wrote, could you try to re-phrase please? thanks.

    • Ariel: I didn’t say you were a conservative. As for libertarians, so is the guy who put this whole post together, Gavin Chait.

      As for your bs argument, you continue to pretend that it doesn’t matter when two groups are actually two segments of the same group. Take apart their funding and get back to me. In a coalition world, these things DO matter. If you choose to believe they don’t, well, you and I are going to have to disagree.

  10. First and foremost there is no such animal as a truly free market economy and there never has been. Chasing myths based on false premises makes everyone a fool, and someone always has their hands in the cookie jar.

    Make greed obsolete, then maybe you’d be onto something…

  11. So Samuel: ” ‘straw man’ is when you make up a hypothetical bogeyman that embodies traits that are not reflected in an actual person.”

    As a student of Philosophy I cannot allow this error to go uncorrected. A ‘Straw Man’ is a reference to a type of argument, whereby the counterpoint to an argument is embodied in a completely separate, unrelated argument. This argument is then held up as a ‘straw man’ whereby the person issuing the counter argument somehow points out flaws in this unrelated argument, and claims to have dis-proven the original argument. This is an obvious logical flaw, and one of the oldest in the book. And (my main point), a prerequisite of the ‘straw man’ requires no actual person.

    In this specific case, the original argument is put forward in the above video/video link. The editors/authors on this website, then continue to make similar looking arguments based on none of the same premises, and arrive at different conclusions appearing make an argument ad absurdum. This however is not the case, because the two arguments put forward have different logical structures and premises.

    But these are all opinions and probably wrong anyways. But I applaud the activism of both sides. I for one would’ve enjoyed seeing criticisms on the military industrial complex included in the original video, but that’s me, I’m usually a purist when it comes to positions such as these.

  12. if you listen closely to every word of if i wanted america to fail, you will see that is exactly what the obama administration is doing. leading us down to a path of destruction.

  13. If I wanted America to fail, I’d make sure that any attempt to free children from the bonds of a government mandated school system and a centralized education bureaucracy was stamped out and ridiculed in the government friendly media. I’d eliminate any voucher system that gave parents control over their children’s eduction and I’d stoke the fires that demonize anyone that would suggest that more money for government schools isn’t the answer.

  14. Cat White – “If I wanted America to succeed”

    Just wanted to correct your typo.
    You don’t have to thank me, we know you meant “succeed” instead of fail.

  15. Rachel:

    Fortunately I’m a pretty good proof reader and have some excellent backup on this site. It’s probably time for you to get back to the kitchen.

  16. Actually, I made some delicious trout for dinner, finished some graphics in Photoshop, and reviewed some data for a project. Women should be encouraged to pursue all of their talents–including you. I find it galling when my fellow women don’t want that for each other.

    PS: I also sew, quilt, do stained glass, and love hands on remodeling.

  17. OK, First. I am NOT an Dem, nor do I think Pres. Obama is doing a good job.
    BUT, this video is FILLED with LIES and those who support it are IGNORANT of the TRUTH.

    Cars don’t cause polution? Really? Then why is the air in Los Angeles poluted. Is it from all the bugs?

    Wind power and wishes? Really? A nice % of TX power comes from wind farms. In fact we could power the entire US if we set up wind farms all over the Mid-West. Fact NOT Fiction.

    The Canada pipeline. Kay Granger Rep Congresswoman from TX just voted YES for the Pipeline and NO to keep the Oil in the US. FACT: Most of the oil processed in the TX/LA gulf goes to EXPORT.

    Logging? Really? Under Clinton a Dem, the US paid $2 for every $1 received to put roads in so the large mining co.’s to clear cut American forests…some were national parks. Do you think the other admin’s didn’t do the same thing???

    Demonize prosperity? Really? So you feel OK that you pay a higher % of income taxes than Mitt Romney? FACT: A new study just came out that shows the richest 1% pay only about 10% of thier income in taxes while the average American pays 22%. Have YOU seen any of that prosperity?

    Edison and Steve Jobs? LOL….READ History Edison KILLED the electric car because he was being paid by the Oil companies. Steve Jobs made BILLIONS by shipping MOST of those Apple Jobs to CHINA….THIS is your HERO?

    Pres. Obama didn’t create Credit Default Swaps. The banks did. The same banks that paid to have GW Bush elected paid to have Obama elected. Do you think they won’t elect the next president as well.

    Those who believe the B.S. in this video are naive ! ! BOTH parties have VOTED to take away your Constitutional rights ! ! ! Wake UP AMERICA….Vote for candidates like Ron Paul, Dennis Kucinich, and Ralph Nader. MOST of the others have been bought and paid for ! OPEN YOUR EYES, READ !!!

  18. After watching the video and reading these replies I am concerned that most people don’t realize the enticing glamour of the title. To begin a subject with a title of “If” opens a huge can of worms.

    The supposed “If” chain of events (but it is not really a chain) reminds me of the latest humorous cable television video located here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hpwlh1yl054

  19. If I wanted America to SUCCEED;
    I would institute war only as a last resort agreed upon by censuses. I would not try to force our belief system on other countries. I would maintain a strong defense in an effort to prevent war.
    I would work to make our schools the envy of other countries. I would have the best teachers and an environment where all kids felt safe and excepted. I would want the kids to be taught the truth regarding history, science, math, and life sciences. I would encourage parents to play a major part in their kid’s education.
    I would provide all people with the opportunity to succeed in society. I would encourage the individuality of people to succeed and to take pride in a job well done. I would develop programs that teach the skills people need to get a job. There would be no discrimination based on sex, race, color, age, national origin, religion, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, pregnancy or veteran status. I would encourage women to pursue their dreams, as I have encouraged my 3 daughters, with equal pay for equal work.
    I would continue to work towards cleaner air and water, because I love my kids and grandkids. I would encourage innovation of new ideas for clean energy.
    I would uphold the Constitution of the United States and enforce our laws. I would have all Politicians accountable to their campaign promises. I would encourage people to look for the good in everyone.

    Can we have some agreement on these?

  20. Cat White: That’s nice. I’m happy for you and I actually do agree with you about that topic & probably that topic only. You do not have to agree 100% with your choice of political party. Can you tell me though how any of the things you mentioned above actually lead to failure? The video clip by Free Market America actually make some really good points that do indeed point to failure..do you not agree?

  21. Peter:
    No, It’s definitely not okay at all to pay a higher percentage in income taxes. I do think though that people shouldn’t despise the rich because they are rich and living the lifestyle they would love to be living. The rich obviously worked hard to get to where they are. You will never be rich by sitting on your butt all day, cashing in your unemployment checks and wishing/fighting for other people’s money to fall into your lap. Stop wishing for other people’s money & get up and make your own! If there’s no jobs near you.. then MOVE to a new area/state! There are plenty of jobs in other locations, trust me. & When your unemployment runs out..don’t get a job just to purposefully get fired so you can receive unemployment benefits again! My main point is that you cannot deny that Obama is honestly making it “more fashionable to resent succes than to seek it.” …
    & I agree.. please, PLEASE, Vote for ANYONE other than Obama.

  22. If I wanted America to fail…

    I’d repeal the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, the Endangered Species Act.
    I’d squash the EPA and those regulations from the FDA that protect consumers.
    I’d allow energy producers to lop off mountain tops in West Virginia as long as I could continue to waste electricity.
    I would continue giving billions of dollars in subsidies to Big Oil and Big Pharma and the Nuclear industry while denying them to emerging clean tech industries such as wind and solar–because, surely, no other countries are subsidizing emerging clean technologies.
    I would continue to make a big stink about compact fluorescent light bulbs and clamor for the return to good ol’ incandescent ones.
    I’d repeal all bottle bills in the country because they impinge on “free markets.”
    I would downplay any oil spills in our coastal waters and say that the oil just disappeared.
    I would submit “Drill Baby, Drill” or “Drill Here, Now” as my energy policy.
    I would roll back auto efficiency standards and let foreign auto makers crush our car industry for good.
    I would scoff at domestic attempts to advance new car technologies (e.g., the Volt) and would rescind, of course, any government rebates.
    I would urge President Romney and Vice President Cain to reinstate James Watt as Secretary of the Interior.
    I would open up all public lands, including our National Parks, to oil and gas drilling.
    I would recreate Love Canal and Three Mile Island and make them National Parks.
    Oh, and ANWR should be sacrificed for the good of the nation and a few cents less at the pump in TEN YEARS.
    I’d continue to demonize anyone who believes 99.9% of the climate scientists out there who believe that there is a human connection to global climate change.
    I would insist on building a pipeline through the center of the country, from Canada to the Gulf, so that we could refine the tar sands oil and then send it off to other countries.

    There, that should do just about do it. Happy Earth Day! 🙂

  23. @ Rachel:

    Based on both posts above, I don’t think you are really looking for answers that will satisfy you. But I will address how killing diversity will lead to failure.

    One of the true hallmarks of the United States has been our social diversity and, over time, our greater inclusion and acceptance of people from diverse backgrounds. Sure, we were always diverse, but for much of our history grudgingly so. We accepted diversity so long as the oppressed or disenfranchised or underrepresented kept to their places: the kitchens, the slave cabins, the reservations, the tenements.

    The United States in the 20th Century boomed, in large part, because these previously undervalued groups demanded more rights and opportunities for success: better jobs, schools, pay, etc. By the time of the 21st century, women comprise nearly 60% of college graduates and immigrants are behind some of the most successful modern companies.

    Backtracking on diversity, education, and inclusion WILL lead to economic stagnation and eventual failure by creating an environment that will stifle growth and development. Other civilizations in human history had their periods of prosperity during which they were open to new ideas and people, followed by periods of decline when they rejected continued innovation, growth, and change.

    But something tells me you did not come here for a history lesson.

    As for the “really good points” in the Free Market America video, I must have missed those. But, as they say, stay tuned to this channel for more on that topic.

  24. If I wanted America to fail, I’d focus on laying blame instead of asking the key questions we should be asking: If we want America to succeed, if we want America to be great, how do we go about doing that, getting there — succeeding?

    If you’re afraid your ship might sink, you’ll stay in the harbor — but of course, ships can’t do their jobs in the harbor. Fishing boats can’t catch fish in the harbor. Trading vessels (think American clipper ships) can’t trade to foreign ports at great speed and high profit, if they stay in the harbor. If you’re afraid to try to succeed, you’ll fail.

    Don’t those clowns listen to their own damned motivational speakers?

  25. @ Ed: Yes, they do. Right now those speakers are telling the audience to stay in the harbor, buy the boats in the harbor cheaper from other nations, and ship out the exports on foreign ships.

  26. >>Make greed obsolete, then maybe you’d be onto something…
    >Man, if I only knew how….

    Well, Jesus tried. But all he’s remembered for now is hating fags, loving guns, and leading numerous sports teams to victory.

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