“Democracies don’t fight. WWI was a war between democracies and authoritarian states.” Why don’t we count Germany as a democracy? Everybody knows it had a deliberative body, the Reichstag, with multiple parties. Did the king have some remaining powers? Is that it? Democrats are real absolutists, aren’t they? It’s not enough to have a parliament; it must be all-powerful.previous
Monday, February 28, 2011
Saturday, February 26, 2011
Friday, February 25, 2011
Wednesday, February 23, 2011
Monday, February 21, 2011
Sunday, February 20, 2011
Saturday, February 19, 2011
A few months ago, yours truly applied for the post of Governor of Norges Bank.
Last Thursday, the Governor gave his annual address. Over at Liberaleren, yours truly has had an alternative address published (in Norwegian).
Friday, February 18, 2011
Monday, February 14, 2011
Saturday, February 12, 2011
Friday, February 11, 2011
Thursday, February 10, 2011
Two to the power of eight years ago today, Charles-Louis de Secondat, baron de La Brède et de Montesquieu passed from this world.
Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Tuesday, February 8, 2011
137 years ago today, the icon of this weblog was born.
Lt.-Col. Strutt was the British officer who was sent on a mission under the personal initiative of His Britannic Majesty George V to command the protection of the Austro-Hungarian Imperial-Royal Family in its internal exile. The Lt.-Col. scared almost the living daylights out of Dr. Karl Renner, Chancellor of the “Republic of Austria,” so the Imperial-Royal Family could leave without any abdication.
Lt.-Col. Strutt became Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire shortly after this mission.
This web log honors this great man by having him as its icon.
Sunday, February 6, 2011
A century ago today, Ronald Wilson Reagan was born.
Over at Mises Daily, Jeff Riggenbach goes through the man and his policies and rhetorics.
George F. Will had a review of an olympiad old book almost an olympiad ago.
Wrote George Will:
[N]ostalgia for Ronald Reagan has become for many conservatives a substitute for thinking. This mental paralysis gratitude decaying into idolatry is sterile: Neither the man nor his moment will recur. Conservatives should face the fact that Reaganism cannot define conservatism.Further:
The 1980s, he says, thoroughly joined politics to political theory. But he notes that Reagan's theory was radically unlike that of Edmund Burke, the founder of modern conservatism, and very like that of Burke's nemesis, Thomas Paine. Burke believed that the past is prescriptive because tradition is a repository of moral wisdom. Reagan frequently quoted Paine's preposterous cry that “we have it in our power to begin the world over again.”Mr. Will continued:
Diggins's thesis is that the 1980s were America's “Emersonian moment” because Reagan, a “political romantic” from the Midwest and West, echoed New England's Ralph Waldo Emerson. “Emerson was right,” Reagan said several times of the man who wrote, “No law can be sacred to me but that of my nature.” Hence Reagan's unique, and perhaps oxymoronic, doctrine conservatism without anxieties. Reagan's preternatural serenity derived from his conception of the supernatural.Moreover:
Reagan's popularity was largely the result of “his blaming government for problems that are inherent in democracy itself.” To Reagan, the idea of problems inherent in democracy was unintelligible because it implied that there were inherent problems with the demos the people.And:
As Diggins says, Reagan's “theory of government has little reference to the principles of the American founding.” To the Founders, and especially to the wisest of them, James Madison, government's principal function is to resist, modulate and even frustrate the public's unruly passions, which arise from desires.This blogger would add that said founding removed an important check, namely the monarchical order, initially only domestically, but this was an important initial step, and it would have tremendous long-term effects, not only on America, but also on the world.
“The true conservatives, the founders,” Diggins rightly says, constructed a government full of blocking mechanisms separations of powers, a bicameral legislature, and other checks and balances in order “to check the demands of the people.” Madison's Constitution responds to the problem of human nature. “Reagan,” says Diggins, “let human nature off the hook.”
Mr. Will went on:
“An unmentionable irony,” writes Diggins, is that big-government conservatism is an inevitable result of Reaganism. “Under Reagan, Americans could live off government and hate it at the same time. Americans blamed government for their dependence upon it.” Unless people have a bad conscience about demanding big government a dispenser of unending entitlements they will get ever larger government. But how can people have a bad conscience after being told (in Reagan's First Inaugural) that they are all heroes? And after being assured that all their desires, which inevitably include desires for government-supplied entitlements, are good?Concluded Mr. George Frederick Will:
If the defining doctrine of the Republican Party is limited government, the party must move up from nostalgia and leaven its reverence for Reagan with respect for Madison. As Diggins says, Reaganism tells people comforting and flattering things that they want to hear; the Madisonian persuasion tells them sobering truths that they need to know.
Saturday, February 5, 2011
Friday, February 4, 2011
Thursday, February 3, 2011
Tuesday, February 1, 2011
Viva o Rei!
Previously elsewhere: Royal World: One Hundred Years of Darkness, The Mad Monarchist: MM Video: Remember Portugal
Elsewhere on the recent, related Portuguese presidential election: Radical Royalist, The Mad Monarchist