Dictator-envy

May 24, 2010

I used to like Tom Friedman’s writings on world affairs, but in recent years I’ve realized he’s nothing but an anti-democratic ass. His latest mental flatus is his fervent wish that America could be like Communist China  – but just for a day!

Well, David, [our political system has] been decimated.  It’s been decimated by everything from the gerrymandering of political districts to cable television to an Internet where I can create a digital lynch mob against you from the left or right if I don’t like where you’re going, to the fact that money and politics is so out of control—really our Congress is a forum for legalized bribery.  You know, that’s really what, what it’s come down to.  So I don’t—I, I—I’m worried about this, it’s why I have fantasized—don’t get me wrong—but that what if we could just be China for a day?  I mean, just, just, just one day.  You know, I mean, where we could actually, you know, authorize the right solutions, and I do think there is a sense of that, on, on everything from the economy to environment.  I don’t want to be China for a second, OK, I want my democracy to work with the same authority, focus and stick-to-itiveness.  But right now we have a system that can only produce suboptimal solutions.

The point of democracy, Tom, is that it allows for a compromise among competing interests that can be agreed to and accepted by a majority of citizens. By nature that won’t be a perfect solution, but it will have the benefit of having legitimacy. (Want to see the opposite in action? Look at how strongly ObamaCare is being rejected after being shoved down our throats by an authoritarian majority.) Your wise, oligarchic leadership in the Forbidden City can only gain acceptance for its measures because, in the end, it has a monopoly of force and the will to use it.

Your fantasy is sickening, but I guess commanding the peasants to do your will is easy to imagine when you live in your own ivory tower.

Do us a favor, Tom, and just move to Beijing. We’ll all be happier.

(via Power Line)

LINKS: More from The Anchoress. An earlier post on Friedman.


Meet Thomas Friedman, Liberal Fascist

September 9, 2009

Years ago, I used to enjoy Thomas Friedman‘s columns in the New York Times. Back then, he struck me as a thoughtful observer of foreign affairs. Then he became a self-important windbag spouting banal thoughts, and I stopped reading him. But now he’s outed himself as a loathsome admirer of fascism.

Watching both the health care and climate/energy debates in Congress, it is hard not to draw the following conclusion: There is only one thing worse than one-party autocracy, and that is one-party democracy, which is what we have in America today.

One-party autocracy certainly has its drawbacks. But when it is led by a reasonably enlightened group of people, as China is today, it can also have great advantages. That one party can just impose the politically difficult but critically important policies needed to move a society forward in the 21st century. It is not an accident that China is committed to overtaking us in electric cars, solar power, energy efficiency, batteries, nuclear power and wind power. China’s leaders understand that in a world of exploding populations and rising emerging-market middle classes, demand for clean power and energy efficiency is going to soar. Beijing wants to make sure that it owns that industry and is ordering the policies to do that, including boosting gasoline prices, from the top down.

You will find no clearer statement of the liberal fascist ideal than that quote from Friedman. “Enlightened?” The same Chinese leaders who massacred pro-democracy demonstrators in Tiananmen Square? Who have draconian childbirth and forced abortion policies? Who are conducting a slow-motion genocide of the Tibetan people? Who starved to death at least 30,000,000 people in an induced famine for… “critically important policies?” Wind power is more important that individual political liberty? This garbage from a man who grew wealthy thanks to the same liberal, free-market capitalist, democratic society he now sneers at?

Wow. Just… wow.  Surprise

(via Jonah Goldberg and Mark Steyn)

RELATED: I’m now convinced that Goldberg’s Liberal Fascism isn’t just good political history, it’s positively prescient.

LINKS: Victor Davis Hanson shakes his head. Power Line gives Friedman a good jolt. More from Ed Morrissey and Sister Toldjah.