08.09.14

Whatever happened to Kennedy?

Posted in Culture of Lickspittle, Fiat money fear and loathers at 12:08 pm by George Smith

Whatever happened to Kennedy, the MTV host (VJ), not the president)?

Well, she’s a right winger with a show on Fox and kicks off the first few paragraphs of an NYT magazine feature on how Ayn Randism has arrived. Libertarianism is the new grunge rock for young voters. Rand Paul, Kennedy says, is Pearl Jam, Ted Cruz, the Stone Temple Pilots.

The piece isn’t meant as satire. But that’s how it reads.

Kennedy’s show on Fox Business Network, “The Independents,” is allegedly non-partisan reads the piece, all because it bashes Republicans, too, and has Matt Welch as a co-host, from Reason magazine, a kind of private clubhouse publication masquerading as deep thought for the political movement.

The article has some great stuff:

“I saw Kennedy onstage in a hotel ballroom … gyrating to the soundtrack of Flashdance and hollering into a microphone, ‘Are you hungry for more liberty?’ She was the M.C. for the Competitive Enterprise Institute’s annual dinner … The C.E.I. is a 30-year-old organization that routinely sues federal agencies … [including Obamacare].”

The article reinforces the impression that libertarians are just snobbish more well-spoken Republicans who refuse to admit it, aren’t hung up on recreational use of drugs and are sort of OK with gay marriage. Even the last doesn’t really apply entirely to the piece. Neither Rand Paul or Ted Cruz are down with it.

Another unintentionally hilarious quote:

“Nick Gillespie is to libertarianism what Lou Reed is to rock ‘n’ roll, the quintessence of its outlaw spirit. He is 50, a former writer for teen and heavy-metal magazines, habitually garbed in black from head to toe, wry and mournful in expression, a tormented romantic who quotes Jack Kerouac. For the past 20 years, Gillespie has been a writer, editor and intellectual godfather for Reason…”

Not much of a recommendation for a magazine or its editors now, is it?

A decent read, it’s here.

Libertarianism isn’t taking over. When people actually come face to face with what it means in this country, they generally go the other way as fast as possible.

Libertarianism, as espoused by a few American politicians and Silicon Valley tycoons, means destroying all the functions of government so they can replace it with their constructs for shoddy private sector services provided at high cost. So they can get more of the pie while taking it from everyone else.

Tim Draper and his Six Californias initiative is the most recent classic example, discussed here. It’s now widely recognized as a ploy to make “Silicon Valley” a state so the tech plutocrats aren’t encumbered by the rest of us. In the process, it would create six new states, two of which, the northern tip and the central valley, would be among the poorest in the country.

Which, rather than being about creating liberty and better government, is an asshole of an idea.

Paul Krugman has spent a bit on his blog commenting, with some humor, on the Times magazine article, including his definition of libertarianism:

In other words, libertarianism is a crusade against problems we don’t have, or at least not to the extent the libertarians want to imagine. Nowhere is this better illustrated than in the case of monetary policy, where many libertarians are determined to stop the Fed from irresponsible money-printing — which is not, in fact, something it’s doing.

The Six Californias initiative is like that, too. Tim Draper’s insistence that California is ungovernable because it is too big is, indeed, a crusade against a problem that doesn’t exist.

California is now very governable and moving forward. The reason is simple. State demographics finally eliminated the Republican Party as a blocking force in the state legislature.

6 Comments

  1. Anon said,

    August 10, 2014 at 5:17 am

    Well, speaking only for myself, I wasn’t wondering what happened to Kennedy the VJ. She was always trying to sell that “conservatism is the new bad boys of rock and roll” thing. Selling “Ayn Randism” is just another huckster shill for her.

    I’ll keep saying it until, well, whenever.

    Ayn Rand admired sociopaths and based her protagonists on them.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Edward_Hickman

  2. George Smith said,

    August 10, 2014 at 9:25 am

    From an interview in Entertainment Weekly, on the debut of her new show:

    What do you think are the biggest misconceptions that people who belong to either party have about libertarians?

    We get attacked from the right and the left, and I think that means that we’re doing something right. If Rick Santorum and Rachel Maddow are both gunning for you, it probably means you’re on the right track. People think that libertarians are probably greedy and anti-social, and I’m sure some of them are. But the nice thing about it is, it’s really an umbrella term that covers a lot of different people. There are libertarians who are survivalists, who live in the middle of nowhere and who are ready for the world to end. And then there are pragmatists, and I would consider myself to be a pretty pragmatic person. I just don’t want some regulatory, bureaucratic body giving my child a one-size-fits-all education, or keeping my husband from producing a good product in the state of California. [Lisa Kennedy Montgomery is married to Signal Snowboards CEO Dave Lee.] Like, those are the two most important things to me, and I see how government and regulations can get in the way. I think when the government gets out of the way, people can achieve phenomenal things.

    Includes she was initially a Republican but changed when Kurt Loder told her because she didn’t like the right’s positions on women, gay people and weed, she was libertarian. Which is pretty much what’s mentioned up top. Amusing.

    http://insidetv.ew.com/2013/12/09/kennedy-mtv-vj-libertarian-show/

  3. Ted Jr said,

    August 11, 2014 at 9:56 pm

    If Libertardism was as great, wonderful and workable as the
    proselytisers and adherents believe it to be, then why isn’t it
    the preeminent form of government in the world?

    But this 2% or less of the political spectrum seems to think
    they have all the answers when in reality, I don’t think they
    are even aware of the questions.

  4. George Smith said,

    August 12, 2014 at 8:57 am

    Is there even one national government regarded as libertarian? A couple micro-nations that went down in flames recently, I suppose.

  5. Anon said,

    August 12, 2014 at 1:17 pm

    In answer to your question of a nation using libertarian government, I’d say maybe Somalia. I think we can say that anyplace that has “government” by regional warlords can be considered “libertarian adjacent.”

    The real problem with any libertarian-governed place, in theory or in practice, is that everyone who wants to live there wants to make lots of tax-free money, but no one ever wants to make sure the sewage system or the garbage collection works.

  6. George Smith said,

    August 12, 2014 at 1:42 pm

    Not a bad way of putting it. Noam Chomsky, who I generally only see in video, says American libertarians aren’t really that. He describes them as, well, fascists. They want to abolish rule-making and regulation by government with their own idiosyncratic rule-making, authenticity of which determined by the power of wealth.