Skip to comments.Jedi Mind Trick Nation
Posted on 12/05/2012 4:08:58 PM PST by Kaslin
In the original "Star Wars", Jedi Obi Wan Kenobi (Alec Guinness) and Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) have to smuggle two droids into the criminal-infested, Empire-guarded city of Mos Eisley. The Empire has been looking for the droids, which contain secret information. But Obi Wan has a solution: when our heroes are confronted by emissaries of the Empire, he simply waves his hand. "These aren't the droids you're looking for." The weak-minded Stormtrooper promptly waves the group through. Obi Wan was using an old Jedi mind trick.
Welcome to America, 2012.
The Democratic Party has apparently been endowed with the ability to use the old Jedi mind trick. That's their entire tactic throughout the fiscal cliff debacle. America faces actual liabilities of $86.8 trillion. That's our outstanding cost on Social Security, Medicare and other retirement benefits accrued. There's no way to tax ourselves out of that hole. As former chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission Chris Cox and former chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee Bill Archer wrote this week, "to collect enough tax revenue just to avoid going deeper into debt would require over $8 trillion in tax collections annually." To put that in perspective, the entire GDP of the country last year was about $15 trillion. Just to keep up with our debt -- to keep it from growing -- we'd have to take more than half of all American wealth. Every year. And that wouldn't even solve our current debt issue.
Republicans sense that this is something of a problem. That's why they aren't going along with President Obama's class warfare shtick, in which Obama pretends that taxing rich people without cutting anything will solve all our problems. Obama's proposal to tax the top 2 percent of income earners accomplishes precisely nothing -- or, even more precisely, it would pay for about eight days of federal government spending.
So how is it that Democrats seem to be winning the battle over the fiscal cliff? Polls show that Americans think Republicans are being stubborn to insist on cuts rather than going along with President Obama's ridiculous scheme to tax and spend more.
Why? The Old Jedi Mind Trick.
That trick relies on Americans not wanting to see plain facts before them. Republicans point out the vast debt, the fact that Social Security and Medicare will soon be bankrupt. Democrats tell happy stories straight from Kim Jung Un's Unicornland, where Social Security and Medicare require no serious reform. "No," said Harry Reid about Social Security last week, "it's not in crisis ... It's fully funded for the next 40 years." Sure it is, where the unicorns roam free. In reality, Social Security is already running in the red. In 2010, the federal government had to borrow $37 billion just to pay those already receiving benefits. But the American people want to hear that Social Security works, so they listen to Reid's trick.
The same holds true with regard to Benghazi. Al-Qaida is surging in the aftermath of the Obama administration's precipitous plans to cut defense and pull out of terrorist-ridden areas. They're ascendant in Tunisia; they're escalating attacks in Afghanistan; they're even planning terror in Jordan. In Libya, they murdered our ambassador and three other Americans. But Obama and his cronies say that Al-Qaida has been decimated while waving their hand. And with the help of a few media droids, they get away with it.
On the Arab Spring, it's more of the same. There has been no Arab Spring. There has been an Islamist awakening. Egypt is turning into a Muslim Brotherhood dictatorship as Obama continues to provide it aid. Syria threatens to use weapons of mass destruction. Turkey reaches out to terrorist Hamas. Iran develops nukes. Hamas fires rockets at Israel. And Obama criticizes Israel for building settlements, and Hillary Clinton criticizes Israel for not being "generous" with the Palestinians. Abracadabra! No more problems in the Middle East.
Problems surround us. They threaten to bankrupt us -- or, just as bad, to doom our children and grandchildren to poverty and subjugation. The American people may want to look away from that incipient disaster, trusting the happy talk of Democrats. They may want to believe that these aren't the droids they're looking for.
But one thing's for certain: the Democrats have certainly found the droids they're looking for.
Thanks for posting this.
In keeping with the Star Wars theme, just wait until Obama is given “emergency powers” that he never revokes!
I teach the High School Sunday School class at church. We were discussing the differences between our generations, and I told them that when I was young, I recall that my parents’ generation thought we were going to ruin the country. Then I told them my parents were right. Sorry, kids. We spent it all and left you nothing.
The kids didn’t like that very much.
And may the new Emperor get the same fate as the old Emperor.
“retirement benefits accrued”
Not really accrued. I don’t know if they’re even explicitly promised, but maybe. But this accrued idea derives from the fantasy that you are paying into a system and that you will be payed back as if it were the “insurance” program it was initially sold as. All that actually is happening is that you were taxed as with every other tax you paid, and the government is taxing people now out of which it may or may not pay you. I won’t say pay you back for there is no back. You assumed they would pay you like they payed others before because, hey, governments don’t go broke. Except all the time, only not this one because it is magical.
The best thing to my mind would be to repudiate our obligations. Simply refuse to honor them. Which is dishonorable, but the truly dishonorable choices were the ones we’ve already made. Plus, we’ve done it before. Anyone remember the gold standard? I didn’t think so.
If your parents were “the greatest generation” then they ruined it as much as you did. Who really deserves the blame is the generation before: the New Deal generation. They spit the Republic’s throat. All we’ve done since is follow their lead.
Then again, they were following the lead of the previous generation, too. The one in charge during WWI. But that was only a hint, and a special wartime one at that. They were yhe first progressive era generation. But there were still some adults wandering around then, too, and they didn’t just talk about limited government. They actually kept government limited.
I want to blame the Civil War generation, though obviously they were split as well. Only a fraction of them were “anything goes.” There was a huge ratcheting effect, just not big enough to fatalistically doom the Republic.
Yeah, I blame the New Dealers with an assist from their parents.
Slit its throat, I meant, not spit.
Do you really expect that everyone and everything would remain as they were centuries ago? Or that we would be radically different from other peoples in a similar position? Or that the very things that you might favor, support, or want wouldn't bring negative consequences along with positive benefits?
If we'd had honest, ID required, you-have-to-trouble-to-register voting, America would look a lot different today. It wouldn't be perfect, but it would at least be more prosperous and moral. The Jedi Mind Trick has us thinking we come from a nation where most of our compatriots are losers, children, idiots, leeches.
The Jedi Mind Trick is making a small representative slice of America appear to BE America, when in fact the only thing the left has more of than us, are MSM talking heads. We outnumber them in every other way.
This is nothing new. Everything in politics in this country can be explained by one simple statement: The Democrats are the Evil Party and the Republicans are theStupid Party.
“Do you really expect that everyone and everything would remain as they were centuries ago?”
My feeling has always been that of Madison, i.e. government’s natural inclination is to grow. So I’ve always expected it to grow, and I was not disappointed.
I find your whole post puzzling, and perhaps insulting. What, specifically, in my post are you reacting to? The question was what ruined the Republic, which I took to mean corruption in the sense that, for instance, women are corrupted, meaning they are no longer maidens. Obviously our current form of government is not the one we see outlined in the Constitution, so it must have been ruined sometime.
The previous poster put it at us; I put it at the New Deal. Does doing so imply I think we should operate exactly as in 1931, if in fact that’s possible? I suppose. You can say that’s naive or perhaps just plain wrong. You don’t have to lecture me on the fact that things change. I wouldn’t have listed all those generations under which we went through ideological shifts if I didn’t already know that.
I never dreamer of our Republic being like the thousand year reich. But I do believe in retaining the Republic in some form, and defending tge principles that matter in the face of historical drift, which is change as you bring up. I wouldn’t be a conservaive if I didn’t so believe. Your response seems to me like the shallowest, most sophistic junior high level relativist in the bad sense comeback against conservatism. Oh, things change, really? I guess everything’s okay, then.
Oh, really? Thanks, Heraclitus, I’ve never heard that before. Except that my post was all about historical turning points, so I guess somewhere in the back of my mind I knew.
“Do you really expect that everyone and everything would remain as they were centuries ago?”
This is off-topic. Whether or not I wanted the US to be a million year reich and when the constitutional Republic was ruined are different matters.
Your post is about the shallowest, most sophistic, relativist in the bad sense piece of junior high reasoning of all the critiques of conservatism. It would be, with a bit of exagerration, as if I said I believed in the death penalty you responded with, “Do you think you can know with absolute certainty someone’s guilt or innocence? Are you God? Did it ever occur to you those who are against it might be right? Or will you execute them, too?” What childishness.
You manage to attack four or five generations of Americans for not holding to your own high standards of republican virtue. If it were just one or two I wouldn't have responded.
Obviously, it's the tone of your posts I was objecting to. If you find most of our history not up to your standards, maybe those standards are unrealistic.
Sometimes people just repeat things without really thinking about them. Then somebody takes it too far, makes it a little ridiculous, and we have to go back and reexamine the idea to see if it really holds water.
The logic of your post is that a constitutional republic as you define it wasn't going to last very long. "Restore" it and it won't last very long either.
Abusing our parents, grandparents, great-grandparents and so forth doesn't have much point if that's the way things are (nor does abusing other posters).
So where do we go from there?
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.