Saturday, February 14, 2009

Gullible or Cynical?

The title of this post links to an article by Paul Hein on about the current economic situation and what's being done about it. Mr. Hein has an idea about the situation which has also occurred to me, although in a different context:
Moreover, the Keynesian idea of stimulating the economy via government spending is not new. It’s been tried before; it never works. Doesn’t the current generation of whiz kids know this? Do they never talk to anyone save themselves?

An answer presents itself to me, and I should probably keep mum about it, but I won’t. Here goes: the powers that be WANT the economy to fail. Why? That’s a good question, but I can only speculate about the answer. What is clear, however, is that economic collapse seems guaranteed if the stimulus package is implemented, and those advocating it must surely know it.
I suspected the same type of thing at the inception of the Iraq war. I noticed that our current enemies were people we had supported in the past, and noticed a trend. I concluded that if our leaders consistently pursued policies that led to results that were the opposite of their stated goals, then they must have a different set of real goals.

That idea may appeal to the "tinfoil hat" crowd, but after thinking about it, I realized that the failed policies could be explained without conspiracy theory. Ideology alone was sufficient to explain everything. People can be controlled far more effectively with ideology that anything else, because they think that whatever they do as a result is their own idea. Also, because most people would rather be right than solve their problems, ideology insulates people from the effects of opposing evidence. If you don't believe this, try pointing out to a fundamentalist Christian that there are two conflicting Noah's Ark stories in the Bible. Or try mentioning to a climate-change believer that Greenland was warm enough to support farming in the Middle Ages.

Of course, all of this isn't to say that there isn't a conspiracy. There may be, but even if there is, it's really ideology that's running the show.

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