– Don’t move to Fishtown.

On living in Singapore:

I am often asked, “Why would someone as fanatically libertarian as you go to a country where there is no democracy, where you get capital punishment for owning guns and drugs?”

– Heartiste on Bryan Caplan (and also Japan vs Haiti).

– When I read this story, wine came out my nose because I was laughing so hard.

– Olave’s diversity newsletter.

– Derb has a nice take on monarchy, here.  He also digs up this gem: .

Charles Murray:

Simplifying somewhat, here’s my reading of the relevant causes: Whether because of support from the state or earned income, women became much better able to support a child without a husband over the period of 1960 to 2010. As women needed men less, the social status that working-class men enjoyed if they supported families began to disappear. The sexual revolution exacerbated the situation, making it easy for men to get sex without bothering to get married. In such circumstances, it is not surprising that male fecklessness bloomed, especially in the working class.

I barely mentioned these causes in describing our new class divide because they don’t make much of a difference any more. They have long since been overtaken by transformations in cultural norms. . . .

But reasonably healthy working-age males who aren’t working or even looking for work, who live off their girlfriends, families or the state, must once again be openly regarded by their fellow citizens as lazy, irresponsible and unmanly. Whatever their social class, they are, for want of a better word, bums. . . . Equally important: Start treating the men who aren’t feckless with respect. Recognize that the guy who works on your lawn every week is morally superior in this regard to your neighbor’s college-educated son who won’t take a “demeaning” job. Be willing to say so.

Why conservatism can’t win.

Also: “what’s so interesting is how this lack of accountability is built into the system.” Hmmm . . . it’s almost as if that is the system.

Simon Grey: “I wonder, though, how people would give up their voting ‘rights’ in exchange for killing off the bureaucracy.”

– A quote sent from a reader:

To understand the operation of universal suffrage, we must consider that there are two kinds of rights to be secured by government — the rights of person and the rights of property. The rights of person are equal, in all classes of men. The protection of the person of the poor man is of as high a nature, and of as much importance in a code of laws, as the protection of the person of the rich man; and the one must be as well guarded by the constitution and laws as the other. In this respect, both classes of men have an equal interest in the government.

Not so with regard to the rights of property. The man who has half a million dollars in property, and pays five hundred or a thousand dollars annually to support the government and laws which protect the poor man as well as the rich, has a much higher interest in the government, than the man who has little or no property, and pays nothing for the protection of his own person and the property of others. Without some provision recognizing this distinction, and giving to men of property the means of securing it, and regulating the disposal of it, without being wholly subject to the power of those who have little or no property, universal suffrage may become the instrument of injustice to the most enormous extent. What can be more absurd and more inconsistent with republican government, whose principle is the security of equal rights, than that the owners of property should not have the right to govern it; or that those who have no property or the least share of it, should have the power to control the property of others!

From Noah Webster’s letter to Daniel Webster


6 Responses to Randoms

  1. asdf says:

    Roissy has a much better Murray follow up.

  2. Five Daarstens says:

    I’ve been to Singapore twice, it seemed pretty nice and a surprisingly good place to hang out. Everything is orderly, food is great, and there is a nice mix of British and Asian cultures there. I almost never saw a police officer, but I could tell that rules were strictly enforced. The only downside to me was beer prices in the pub were very high, especially for Asia.

  3. sardonic_sob says:

    I recently read the beautifully desolate book “Deer Hunting With Jesus,” and the author pointed out that a lot of the problem with the rural areas he was chronicling was that the smart kids grew up and got the Hell out.

    Not that this hasn’t always happened, to some extent, but the thing that’s different now is that it’s more or less automatic. If you’re smart, the school’s going to pick it up in tests, and you’re going to get college scholarships, and you’re going to move away, and it’s easy for you to find a job in a city after you graduate. You don’t stay and become the town doctor, or the town lawyer, or the judge, or the mayor, or the county clerk, which before the bright but not blazing might be comfortable doing.

    Before, you had to be smart *and* ambitious, brave enough to leave and driven enough to want to. Now the educational/employment system is like a giant vacuum sucking all the talented young people out of rural areas, small towns and lower-class neighborhoods like Fishtown, ne’er to return. So the people there have no core of talented, intelligent (even relatively speaking) community leaders to keep things moving in a positive direction. Metaphorically, they take their top ten percent (or whatever) out behind the barn and shoot them on graduation day. Or rather, they might as well, since they leave and never come back: they are lost to the community forever. You can’t keep doing this for multiple generations and not expect serious negative consequences.

  4. Senexada says:

    The Noah Webster quote is documented in this work: http://www.archive.org/details/collectionofpape00websiala

    starting on page 275

  5. Alrenous says:

    A certain M.G. has posted an amusing rebuttal to the tech/racism infographic.

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