12 March 2005

We cant allow that, it would be popular

[source, source, source]

As conservatives well understand, once a group of voters has been given a property right by Washington, they will never allow it to be taken away. The individual rights will be a ratchet, one that can be expanded but never contracted. The pressure for expansion would be especially strong during extended bull market runs, such as during the late ‘90s, when the public (and even some economists) tends to delude itself into thinking that stocks will rise forever. This is why conservatives are so insistent upon establishing individual accounts. They have uncharacteristically volunteered compromises—even offering to violate their theological opposition to tax hikes—in order to insert their opening wedge. Privatizers understand full well that any concessions they make can be legislated away in the future, while private accounts cannot.

this is a revealing bit. Chait argues that Democrats have to stop accounts now because the public would like them and demand their expansion and liberalization

Of course, the Progressives have never thought highly of the opinions of the hoi polloi.

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Anti-American, not anti-war

[source, source]

I spent part of last week ringing up the organizers of the anti-war events with a couple of questions. The first: Would they allow anyone from the newly-elected Iraqi parliament to address the gatherings? The second: Would the marches include expressions of support for the democracy movement in Arab and other Muslim countries, notably Iraq, Lebanon and Syria?

In both cases the answer was a categorical no, accompanied by a torrent of abuse about “all those who try to justify American aggression against Iraq.”

I’d like to be able to say that I’m surprised that anti-Americanism trumps all other concerns for these people, but I’m not. At least they’re open about it now.

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