Friday, July 06, 2012

Information Without A Proper Pedigree Should Be Ignored

Yesterday, I engaged a young Peronist on Twitter. They didn't know they were a Peronist, of course, as they probably didn't know who Juan Peron was or what he stood for. What they did know is that they wanted to tell everyone what to do.

Our kids attended Catholic schools for 16 years and we're always active within our schools and parishes. At no time have we heard any of the school or parish employees complain that their birth control costs weren't covered by the diocese' health insurance plan. Further, they were all skilled people and could find jobs elsewhere. The teachers even worked at the school for significantly less pay than they would get at the public schools.

Free people engaged in free commerce. One side sold their labor and skills and the other side offered salary and benefits. Everyone was able to come and go as they pleased.

The HHS mandate brings a new player into that transaction - the government. The government has descended on us like a shroud, bringing deadening regulations, laws and penalties that we did not need or want. Supporters of the HHS mandate point to arguments and polls in support of the new regulations, not asking the obvious question, "What business is it of mine to butt in?"

Are their lives governed by our arguments and our polls? Would they like that? Pointing this out did no good.

Me: I think a free people can manage their working relationships just fine without you

Peronist: The facts are this free people has decided they like gov't.

So then I tried a financial line. Here in California, budgets are already being slashed as the government grapples with decades of overreach. I tried to point out that you can have all the regulations you want, but if you can't pay to enforce them, they're essentially invisible.

I threw the Peronist a link to Victor Davis Hanson's (VDH) excellent piece on the Two Californias. What I saw driving around Taft, CA, mirrors exactly what VDH had to say. The regulations in rich San Diego don't apply in poor Taft. Government has receded from those areas and taken regulators with it. As government shrinks still further, either the lawless regions will grow or the laws will have to be scaled back. It's not ideology, it's math.

Well, that was a mistake. It turns out the VDH piece was in National Review Online (NRO) and I guess NRO had some kerfuffle involving someone writing something someone considered racist. That was enough for the Peronist. Dismissing it with an airy wave of his patrician hand, he sniffed that, "NRO is a joke. When you've published racists, your rag isn't worthy to be read."*

So facts aren't facts unless they come from the right kind of people. Information needs a proper pedigree or the cognoscenti can safely ignore it. Sigh. It makes talking to them so difficult. You can't simply marshal facts, you have to confine yourself to channels where the decent people write. It's like dealing with a psychotic where you have to avoid certain terms or else they go bananas. It's exhausting.

Good thing we're not hurtling towards fiscal disaster, otherwise this would really matter. 
* - No, I don't want to go down that line of argument. The flash mobs / Rev. Wright / Louis Farrakahn / etc. path. It's just so painfully stupid.


Jedi Master Ivyan said...

It's impossible to talk to them; they have such a radically different worldview. An acquaintance on facebook was in complete denial of the possibility of the USA going bankrupt.

16 trillion and counting...

The best part of our conversation: she was willing to accept that I was a Romney supporter.
I was so relieved she would allow me to have my own opinion.

Anonymous said...

Don't worry, KT, he shouldn't have been listening to you anyways-- those of us who use pseudonyms are odd cowards, don'cha know. Must be true, some commenter that likes to pick fights and make accusations on Ricochet said it. *eyeroll*

Also, if you use a nickname and don't legally change your name to it, you've got issues. *snerk*