31.8.17

TIME TO DECONSTRUCT THE CULT?

Give Paul Krugman the Trenchant Observation of the Day.  "Given the powers we grant to the president, who in some ways is almost like an elected dictator, giving the office to someone likely to abuse that power invites catastrophe."  Now, he's contemplating incipient fascism, and the unlikeliness of a Republican House or Senate to be too rebellious, and there's the little matter of that way-more-mobilized-and-angry constituency than Richard Nixon ever enjoyed that he didn't think about, but probably should be thinking about.

Jeffrey Tucker uses the column as an opportunity to suggest that devotees of the Cult of the Presidency rethink their idolatry.
The idea of an “elected dictator” is completely inconsistent with any classical understanding of freedom. And this has been going on a very long time, kicked into high gear by the Progressives at the turn of the twentieth century, the very people who built the machinery of power to intervene in every aspect of economic life. On any other day of the week Krugman celebrates exactly these powers for purposes of macroeconomic management and property redistribution in the name of equality.
Yes, and the Social Engineering Vice dies hard.  But perhaps undermining it by restoring the Chief Executive to his Article II Powers is a possibility.
We’ve got three and a half more years of this administration, which also means three and a half more years of center-left critics of Trump decrying his dictatorial use of executive powers. Is it too much to hope that this experience will be enough of a shock finally to disrupt the belief systems of people like Krugman, even to the point of revisiting the ideas of the classical liberals who warned about all of this so long ago? It’s doubtful. Still, we should never give up that hope, if not for Krugman but for all those coming of age during these traumatic times.
Exactly.

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