By: Wayne Brown
A friend recently sent me the short video clip included below. The clip is taken from the Phil Donahue talk show television series and was recorded some 30 years ago. Donahue had a taste for the liberal ideology that yearned for the curing of world hunger, the existence of world peace and the absence of the depravity of mankind around the globe. In the video, he poses questions to economist, Milton Friedman. These questions underscore Donahue’s doubts as to the political orientations of the American people. Please watch the video and then continue reading this piece.
Essentially, Donahue, posing intellectually eloquent, concludes that the ultimate evil of capitalism is the creation of greed, and because of that effect, the process as a form of economic pursuit is flawed. He basically says to Friedman that he thinks maybe America would be a better place if we pursued a different political and economic philosophy. Keep in mind that this video is 30 years old but Friedman’s answer is as refreshing today or possibly more so than it was at that time.
One could conclude, and also hope, that Donahue was just thinking out loud and waxing philosophically about the state of world…you know, basically shooting the breeze with a fellow intellectual. One could only hope but Donahue was serious in his liberal viewpoints so it is doubtful that would be the case. It is interesting that he seemed rather speechless in response to Friedman’s answers…almost as if he had never really given the alternatives much thought.
Donahue, like so many of us, was the product of the 60’s in terms of thinking and intellect. The turmoil of the 60’s ranging from the struggle over civil rights to the Vietnam War tore at the seams of America philosophically and created a generation of liberal doves who believed that the United States was the product of evil minds and that the pursuit of capitalism was nothing more than an exercise in greed. They basically saw the entire establishment as a threat to the future of the world. On that basis, it was easy to attack it, criticize it and demonize it.
Time moved on and the various problems fell by the wayside as they have a tendency to do over time. All of us got older. Those who fought and served in what we may have felt was an unjust war came home to a country that turned its back in disgust at the sight of an American military veteran. The intellectual hippie crowd or flower children that had populated the hills of San Francisco (and still do for the most part) felt that their thinking was truly confirmed and that their intellectual conclusions were on the right path.
All of us got older and the hippies eventually joined or somewhat joined the establishment along the way setting up housekeeping and raising a family. Their ideas stayed the same and they yearned for a cause that would make them burn inside like they felt in their protests against the war and the inequities of mankind. They wanted that righteous feeling to be there in their lives for as much and as long as possible. They continued to attack the establishment and all it produced citing all the destruction that was being forced on the environment and the ecosystem of the planet. Righteousness was once again near at hand.
Donahue was very much at the center of all of this. The fly in the ointment of this feel good righteousness is that it never questioned what the alternative might be. It worked on illogical conclusions such as: If the USA does not treat members of all races equitably, it is because of capitalism; therefore, since Russia is not a capitalist country, they must treat people much better that we do in the USA. That conclusion may sound rather stupid and naïve to you at this point but it made all the sense in the world to a bunch of folks who were self-proclaimed intellects and the self-appointed saviors of mankind and the world.
Move this concept into “group think” and it takes on a new and stronger senergy. Mix in a few people who are adept at spreading the philosophy and beauty of a socialistic-communistic ideaology and you have the makings of a mass of people who become quite dangerous to the world of capitalism. They become puppets of something of which they have little or no understanding. All they know is that when they are working in this domain, they feel all warm and fuzzy inside…ever so righteous.
Working from the inside of the establishment, these people began to fill political positions both locally and nationally. They gain even more power over time as they gain access to the almighty taxpayer dollar and begin to manipulate it to their own way of thinking. Governmental organizations begin to spring up either in answer to the protests of this movement or as directed by those who had gained enough political power to get the job done. Governmental regulation grows and inserts itself more and more into people’s lives with organizations like the Environmental Protection Agency which has been in a growth mode since its inception and is still getting larger today though it serves no truly useful purpose. The fact that some know it is there makes them feel all warm and fuzzy…you know righteous.
For all of this righteousness and forward thinking, it is quite apparent simply by looking at Donahue’s facial expression in this 30 –year old video that he never had given any thought as to whether or not the alternatives of the world offered the ideas he was espousing to Friedman. He had just assumed that there was a more perfect place on earth by virtue of the fact that he despised the one that he currently lived in. This is the reality of that generation of thinking. Those who participated in it wanted so badly to get away from the evils they saw in capitalism that they were willing to rush to the other side without even questioning what was over there. Basically, they assumed they were right on the basis of sheer blind faith.
The mindset is still very much alive today as is the need to feel “righteous” about doing the right things. Taxing people to death in order to create a revenue stream which assures there is an abundance of welfare money on hand in the government is just one example. Assuming that government can and will create jobs along with making the economy better is another example. Government seldom ever makes anything better but is almost guaranteed to make everything worse. The bigger government gets, the more true and predictable that statement really can be.
I have heard some speculate as to how our current President could be so naïve with regard to the economy and big government. Common sense tells them that no one ever spent their way out of trouble and that debt ultimately sinks ships yet the President and his fold do not seem to subscribe to such rhetoric. They seem bent on loading America down with debt to continue spending at an uncontrolled pace; bent on dragging America into a healthcare program that is beyond the scope of affordability to the American taxpayer; bent on continuing to tax and tax and tax to gain the money necessary to carry out their desires. Nothing about this seems right to those with common sense as they know that the concept of a government having “enough money” is one that is never satisfied because those who occupy high office in Washington DC cannot and will not control their spending. If money is available, they must spend. If money is not available, they must spend…it makes them feel righteous.
America’s demise as a capitalist society began a long time ago…likely before the 60’s. But, we can be sure, as witnessed by Donahue’s thinking, that the socialist really saw an opportunity to get into our heads in the 60’s. They did and they have stayed there gaining a greater footing at every turn. We now have universities of higher learning all but fully staffed with highly paid tenured professors who feel that it is their duty and responsibility to teach socialism and communism…it makes them feel righteous. They reestablish the Donahue mindset in the young of our country and cause them to turn on all the things that have brought us through more than 200 years as a great nation. They have taught our children to hate democracy and capitalism because they feel righteous when they do it.
America has weathered a lot of sinister forces over time. Certainly socialism and communism will likely always be there attempting to come through the door and dominate our society. Those who would prefer it will never stop trying and their numbers grow by the year. They infiltrate our educations systems; they undermine our religious beliefs and traditions; they attack our financial institutions; they created divisions in our society by arousing hatred of the wealthy; they work at destroying the traditional institution of marriage; they demonize the Bible, and they constantly point out the flawed aspects of a government run by a Constitution and a Bill of Rights drawn up in the 1700’s. Slowly, they wear us down and little by little they take a part or all of these things away over time.
President Obama does not concede much on his focus or direction. He is devout in his beliefs which drip with juices of socialism. What you see and what you hear is real because he actually believes what he is telling you with regard to who we are as Americans and how we really should be; with regard to hope and change and any number of issues which have arisen over the past three years. He believes all of that. Though we may be on the road to economic disaster and financial ruin, he continues on the path because he actually believes that those policies which he subscribes to are better for America than anything which has come before it. As a result, for the first time in American history, we are in dire straits with the rapidly accumulated national debt. For the first time, this country could face a future of financial ruin yet the President and his fold continue on their path because, as they do, it makes them feel righteous and that’s what it is all about at the end of the day, huh?
God Bless America!
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