Stand back, Gentle Reader. This could get ugly. I’m about to vent.
Mostly, I eschew watching videos of more than two or three minutes’ duration. I read very fast, and I much prefer to absorb information that way. Thus, the time spent watching a video is almost always several times what reading a transcript would cost me.
I make a few exceptions. One of them is for Tucker Carlson. It’s not because I always agree with him, or because I find him unusually entertaining. Rather, I’ve been informally charting his progress from Buckleyite “orthodox” conservatism to a more principled and defensible “freedom uber alles” orientation. To cut to the chase, he’s getting pretty close, as witness the video embedded below.
The scorpion’s sting is that Tucker’s platform is a corporate property that can be yanked out from under him at any instant. FOX’s sponsors could be part of his undoing. That would be a tragedy the nation can ill afford. To a remarkable degree, the big corporations like and prefer Big Government. They see it as a source of revenue and a weapon to be wielded against their competitors.
Big Government loves big corporations. The Deep State’s rule-making has had the effect – perhaps unintentionally at first – of promoting giantism in commerce.
As the commercial dynamic – i.e., the privileging of large firms over small ones that arises from pervasive regulation – took effect, those whose aim is unbounded power discovered that big, nominally private organizations can be used as delegated agencies of social and economic control. They piled on the regulatory burden to bring ever more of the American economy into de facto cartel control of the three thousand largest corporations. Today the Fortune 3000 employ about half the wage earners in the United States and exert de facto control over the bulk of the American economy.
The ascendancy of megacorporations over the many times more numerous small businesses in the U.S. could not and would not have occurred without the action of the Deep State.
The following is from my novel Polymath:
“Was there anything you want to discuss that we haven’t already covered?” Iverson said.
“Just something from our first interview,” she said. “I can’t quite fathom why you license the production of everything you design. You must be happy with the results, but you’re forgoing the possibility of making Arcologics a Fortune 100 firm.”
He chuckled. “Jeanne told me you’d return to that. It’s fairly simple, really. We’re not here for that. Well, it would be more accurate to say that I’m not here for that. Miss Cathcart—”
She held up a hand. “May I please be Kate, at least until I’ve become an actual employee?”
He nodded. “Okay.” He sat back and looked down at his folded hands. It was the classic pose of a man deep in his decision-making process. Kate’s anticipation level rose still further.
Finally he said “It’s like this. Everything, from one-celled organisms to corporations, has an optimum size. It’s determined by the nature of the beast: in the case of a commercial enterprise, what it was formed to do. Most publicly traded companies outgrow their optimum sizes without realizing it, because when their managements decided to go public they left their, ah, mission behind in a quest for big capital investment and the profit and prestige that go with it. But I haven’t forgotten my mission and I won’t, so I haven’t taken Arcologics public and I don’t intend to.” He sat back with an expression of anticipation, eyes locked with hers.
That’s my cue.
She swept her gaze around the cafeteria. The few others still dining were far enough away not to be a factor. “Are you willing to discuss that mission with your chief engineer to be?”
He nodded. “But only with you.” The gravity of his tone brought her to full alert. “This must never be disclosed to anyone else. No exceptions whatsoever. Still want to hear it?”
“My mission,” he said, “is to make Man not just a space-faring race, but a space-dwelling one as well.”
“How?” she breathed.
Todd Iverson’s gentle grin flared with an unmistakable intensity.
“By designing and constructing a closed, completely self-sufficient space habitat and positioning it at one of the Earth-Moon Lagrange points,” he said. “And then moving there.”
You’ve read my rants about the loss of human latitude that followed the closing of the land frontier. That event has made it possible for the two-hundred-odd States on Earth to tighten their grip on their citizens / subjects year by year, steadily gnawing away at what individual freedom remains. The trend is, if I may, obvious. The destination is in view. We will be brought there willy-nilly.
Unless we can open the “high frontier.”
The States of Earth are implacably hostile to such a development. Here in the United States, attempts to establish a completely private orbital presence will be fought with such shibboleths as “public safety” and “national security.” Elon Musk will be tolerated only as long as he refrains from threatening government’s grip on us. Should his SpaceX enterprise acquire the ability to establish a habitat like that Todd Iverson intends, Washington will find ways to shut him down. If he should construct a viable habitat before the Deep State can act to prevent it, expect the federal government to demand that it be nationalized and placed under federal law. The strategic value of an orbital foothold is too great to be shared with a mere corporate owner.
Money can buy Twitter; it cannot buy freedom.
The propaganda for continuously extending and increasing the power of the State has recently adopted a previously under-appreciated and under-exploited rationale: “public health.”
I know that’s not news. If its insidiousness was unclear before the COVID-19 “pandemic,” it’s surely clear to everyone with three functioning brain cells by now. However, the further-out implications aren’t easy for most people to grasp. And boy oh boy, do those implications go further out!
There is not one variety of human action that cannot be viewed – and controlled – through the lens of public health. “The public” is a term of art that means whatever the Deep State wants it to mean. Likewise “health.” Remember the arguments about allowing a woman to abort her baby if carrying it to term would impact her “health?” You should; they’ve been used to derail popular campaigns for restricting legal abortion ever since Roe v. Wade was first decided.
Has “public health” been used as a justification for promoting Critical Race Theory or gender-fluidity? I’d be unsurprised – and if it hasn’t, I’d give odds that it will be. The term is so flexible that it could be applied to any activity whatsoever – whether to forbid it or to compel it. The power-mongers have demonstrated that they’re aware of that.
Just a couple of days ago, Pretender-in-Chief Joseph R. Biden said outright that the president can suspend or override any law, regulation, or Constitutional provision if in his sole opinion it’s essential to public health. I don’t recall anyone taking up cudgels again that claim. Perhaps we were all just too badly stunned. Then again, Biden is also known for having claimed that “No right is absolute.” Perhaps those we might have expected to square off with the moron and his handlers saw his more recent claim as just more of the same.
We’re going to get more of this, Gentle Reader. It’s coming. It’s already being aimed at your personal mobility, your personal security, your personal comfort, and how you spend your earnings. Barring an uprising that would make the original American Revolution look like a pillow fight, it will only get worse.
About six years ago, I wrote:
For decades now I’ve flitted between minarchism and outright anarchism. If you’ve read my Spooner Federation books, you’re familiar with the process I consider inevitable:
- The disorder of the “state of nature” – read Thomas Hobbes – gradually gives way via natural processes to order, albeit without a recognized – i.e., a pre-indemnified – government.
- A well-ordered yet ungoverned society – i.e., the anarchist ideal – will slowly evolve into an (at first) well-ordered governed society with strong popular consensus.
- This gradually becomes an unjustly governed society owing to the dynamic of power-seeking: i.e., the men most likely to gain power are those who want it for its own sake and the benefits it can bring them personally.
- The unjustly governed society will steadily lose its order, and therefore its popular consensus: the consent of the governed. This will precipitate collapse.
- Collapse means a return to anarchy, which by dint of natural processes will slowly regain order, restarting the cycle.
This cycle has overwhelming historical support. It suggests that there’s no way out of the cycle, which implies that for best results, one simply has to trust to luck – i.e., to be born in the right time and place – and mobility – the readiness, willingness, and ability to move from an undesirable society to a more desirable one. But where does that leave us of Twenty-First Century America?
Why, right where we are today, of course: enmeshed in a steadily deteriorating, ever more anarcho-tyrannical context. At the moment, the only escape is to even less desirable places. That might change; developments in space flight and workable space habitats are ongoing, and it’s impossible to say if or when they’ll mature. But the cycle itself appears to be embedded in human nature. If that’s the case, then no matter where men go, the cycle will go with them.
The United States is in the fourth of the five stages enumerated above. There’s no way to foresee how long it will last. History strongly indicates that a collapse is ahead of us, but no one alive today can be certain he’ll live to see it, or what follows it.
My great fear is that the developments of the century behind us have equipped the State with tools it can use to prolong the fourth stage indefinitely. The power of the “public health” rationale – not merely at empowering the State but more importantly at shaping public attitudes and inducing compliance — coupled with the steady concentration of Americans’ incomes in an ever smaller group of companies and a general disinclination among private persons to court conflict or otherwise “rock the boat” might raise the threshold for entering the fifth stage to an unattainable level.
Would anyone care to present a rosier picture of the American future?