Saturday, November 7, 2015

Is Bill Gates Athenian?


For John, BLUFWorry about those who would "save us".  Nothing to see here; just move along.



Mr Jim Geraghty, writing in The National Review, gives us Mr Bill Gates' view on Democracy.  "Richest Man in the World:  'Representative Democracy Is a Problem.'"
When I sat down to hear his case a few weeks ago, he didn’t evince much patience for the argument that American politicians couldn’t agree even on whether climate change is real, much less on how to combat it.  “If you’re not bringing math skills to the problem,” he said with a sort of amused asperity, “then representative democracy is a problem.”
And so it is.  The subsequent problem is the alternatives.  We have the system under scientific materialism, which gave us Stalin and Mao.  We had Bonaparte.  We had that brand of socialism known as Fascism.  And we have had the example of strong man, of the Caudillo.  While some were satisfactory for a short period of time (Juan Perón), none have been very satisfactory over the longer run.

And it isn't just Mr Gates who is unhappy with Democracy.  Look at Greece.  Here is a 5 November article in The Old Gray Lady by Reporter Steven Erlanger—"Resistance to Authority in Greece as Pessimism Takes Hold".

The Article finds the Greeks, or at least the New York City born mayor of Athens, Mr Yiorgos Kaminis, to be looking to a bleak future.  As Mayor Kaminis says in the article:

Greeks no longer believe, if they ever did, he said, in the functionality of politics.
So, the Greeks are losing faith in representative democracy.  What we have is public unhappiness, demonstrations, rising crime, increasing abuse of alcohol and drugs and a continuing exodus by younger Greeks.  The question is if and when someone decides bringing back "The Colonels" is the solution?

I am not sure I see a solution for Greece.  And it is sad.

As for the US, perhaps the problem is those who have talked about climate change.  Back in the 1970s it was global cooling.  Today we are told that no one really believed in global cooling, but it was the popular meme of the time.  Then we had global warming, with dire predictions of problems soon, with soon being pushed back over time.  This kind of thing leads to skepticism, and rightfully so.  If you are talking and you don't have your stuff together, if all you can do is say "believe me, I am a scientist", then you have problems.

Don't get me wrong.  There probably is climate change of sort coming our way.  I am doubtful the "experts" actually know what is going to happen.  I do think we need to be doing the planning needed to make projects to deal with rising oceans "shovel ready".  Fixing our power grid would be a good idea.  Not doing the Keystone Pipeline is just more propaganda.  The oil will be sold and more men like Rafael Bienvenido Cruz will go to Canada for work, since it won't be here.

Of course, Mr Gates and others of his ilk could stop using private jets.

In the mean time, we need to protect our Democracy from those who promise a better way, a way guided by those who can do math, or science, or something.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

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