20 October 2010

Via Meadia

Par nedelja nisam stigao da pratim blog Waltera Russela Meada Via Meadia, pa tek sada linkujem na nekoliko odličnih postova (članaka, u stvari).

1. Post o savremenoj američkoj politici. WRM misli da , ukoliko demokrate ubrzo nešto ne promene, nemaju budućnost: 

In fact, the only real economic policy today that has any chance of working in the United States today is to promote the emergence of small business.  Many of those businesses will fail; some will become thriving though never large enterprises; a few will become world-changing giants like Microsoft and Google.
Unfortunately for Democrats, the policies needed to support the emergence of an entrepreneurial, small-business-fueled society are almost the opposite of the classical policies that 20th-century Democratic ideology supports.  Large business usually welcomes government intervention in the economy — if only because large businesses have the power to influence the government policies that affect them most directly.  Regulations that raise the cost of entry into the market (everything from minimum wage laws, extensive paperwork requirements, taxes, environmental regulations, health care and other social mandates) benefit well-capitalized, large firms who thrive on economies of scale by making it hard for feisty newcomers to emerge and challenge existing product lines and business models.
The grand strategy of Democratic policy in the 20th century was to use the confluence of interests between big established business and organized labor to set up a nationally regulated marketplace that served major interests of both groups. That strategy for all its shortcomings arguably once served the national interest better than any conceivable alternative.  Now, it’s a recipe for economic disaster in the long run, and for electoral failure next month.

2. O Kjoto prevari. Mead ukazuje na vrlo zanimljiv članak iz Guardiana, u kojem se navodi da, iako Evropa smanjuje emisiju ugljen dioksida u proizvodnji, ako posmatrate potrošnju (i uvoz) emisija je skočila za 40% od 1990. godine. U suštini, Evropljani su jedino naterali firme da se odsele u Istočnu Aziju. 

EU “progress” on greenhouse gasses in the last twenty years was a mirage.  And the only reason that the EU can pretend to look green is that it was outsourcing economic growth to countries like China.  Those 95 US senators were totally right; twenty years of the Kyoto Protocol have brought the world twenty years of rising greenhouse gas emissions and twenty years of job migration to low wage, low regulation havens in the Third World.
It is extremely rare for 95 US senators to be right about anything; it is not, unfortunately, rare for environmentalists to come up with grotesquely bad policy ideas.

3. Post o Gruziji i komunizmu, u kojem WRM opisuje svoje prvo lično iskustvo sa zemljama iza gvozdene zavese.

As a radical teenager growing up in the midst of the anti-Vietnam War movement I had always figured that since the government was lying to us about so much in Indochina, maybe they were lying about communism as well.  The Pol Pot genocide?  That, the radical leaders of the young boomer generation told us, was a natural and regrettable consequence of America’s interference in Cambodia.  We had destabilized Cambodia; naturally, there was a genocide now — and it was really our fault, much more than the communists’.  And it was probably overreported anyway, and at least some of the people killed had probably done some bad things.  And episodes like that could simply not be compared to the moral horror that was Nazism.  I had my doubts, but they said it with great conviction.  And Richard Nixon really was a bad guy.  Why shouldn’t the genocide also be his fault?  As a kid, I really, really wanted the world to make sense.
By the time I reached the Soviet border, a lot of that early left-wing soft sympathy for communism had fallen away.  Driving through the wasted urban landscapes of central and eastern Europe, it was hard to avoid noticing that the evil capitalist pigs were actually much nicer to the environment than the enlightened and idealistic socialist workers had managed to be.  The filth of late-communist Poland was hard to take; I stood outside Krakow one day in a beautiful field by the side of the road, with a fresh breeze blowing through the grass.  I took a deep breath and nearly choked; it was like standing directly behind the exhaust pipe of a big, dirty bus.  The air in that part of Poland was so polluted that kids used to have to go down to the salt mines, hundreds of feet below the earth’s surface, to get something approaching fresh air.... 
As in Yugoslavia, I got to know people who were nerving themselves up to massacre their neighbors and drive innocent people out of their homes.  I saw how the worst nationalistic paranoias and chauvinisms raged unchecked under Soviet rule — while in the capitalist west most Europeans had left that murderous claptrap behind long ago.  Communism, it seemed to me then and still seems to me now, is not the opposite of fascism: it is fascism’s blood-brother, its complementary twin.  The two live together in a vicious symbiotic relationship; scratch a Red and you’ll find a Brown.  Better yet, scratch either one deeply enough and you will find a Black: someone so caught up in the will to power that crimes and atrocities don’t even count anymore.

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