We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Samizdata quote of the day

Mr Obama laments that the debate over these issues did not follow “an orderly and lawful process”, but the administration often blocked such a course. For nearly five years it appeared comfortable with the secret judicial system that catered to executive demands. It prized the power to spy on Americans, and kept information from Congress. Mr Snowden exposed all of this. His actions may not have been orderly or lawful, but they were crucial to producing the reforms announced by Mr Obama.

The Economist

12 comments to Samizdata quote of the day

  • RRS

    Regrettably, despite the authoritative aspects of the Executive Office, the ultimate source of these problems stems from the failure of the legislative branch to exercise its powers properly.

    The “quality” of legislation has deteriorated to the point that it is little more than a framework for total executive authority; basically, a delegation of constitutionally assigned legislative authority to ever proliferating bureaucracies that are necessary to the operations of the ever-increasing functions assigned to and arrogated by the mechanisms of the federal government.

    Much as it pains me to admit, the Executive Office, regardless of its occupancy, has become overloaded as a result of the abdication of legislative responsibilities. The President does not operate the bureaucracies that are required to deal with the functions assumed for the federal government by the politicians elected to Congress; he “runs” the people who are responsible for operating those bureaucracies to which too much is delegated without specification, limitation, control or oversight.

    The fault is not in the “Star;” is in the form of our representation which the electorate has neglected in its quest for security, emancipation from responsibilities, and then almost exclusive “Pursuit of Happiness.”

    If the people of the United States were fortunate enough that some individual might step forth in that Executive Office and boldly describe the conditions, and begin to require the responsibility of the legislative branch to provide specification, limitations, means of control and meaningful (not showmanship) oversight, it is questionable whether they would regard that as anything other than abdication of executive authority, which has become essential to the public’s desire for emancipation from responsibility.

  • Paul Marks

    The “reforms introduced by Obama” – as if they are real. Pathetic.

    No doubt the Economist will soon be denouncing Obamacare – which it specifically supported at the time (and was introduced by a President it supported – TWICE).

    But even then it will not be an honest opposition to the idea that the government should finance ……..

    It will be change it in such-and-such a way.

    “If we had blue note paper, rather than pink note paper, the public services would work”.

    And get “Capita” involved – getting private companies to provide taxpayer financed stuff, really changes so much……….

    How does the Economist magazine stay in business?

  • RRS

    How does the Economist magazine stay in business?

    by remaining “flexible.”

  • Paul Marks

    After all Mr Snowden was a private contractor.

    As were Tax Farmers.

    And for people who do not know what a “Tax Farmer” is – think the Mafia accept openly working for the government.

    A little experience with them and you will think the Inland Revenue and the IRS are sweet little angels.

  • llamas

    @ Paul Marks, who wrote:

    ‘No doubt the Economist will soon be denouncing Obamacare – which it specifically supported at the time (and was introduced by a President it supported – TWICE).

    But even then it will not be an honest opposition to the idea that the government should finance ……..’

    No doubt that will happen – because it’s part of the plan.

    As I predicted on these very pages, several years ago now – an integral part of the long-term strategy is that ‘Obamacare’ – as presently arranged – HAS to fail. It is failing now, and the administration is doing nothing to prevent it – because that’s what they want to have happen.

    The long-term goal is mandatory, exclusive, government single-payer healthcare for all. But that could not possibly have passed the Congress, then or now. So it was folded into a two-step process. The first step was ‘Obamacare’, which is designed and destined to fail. This in turn alllows the Democrats to say ‘look at what happens when we try to work with private insurers. They sabotaged our noble effort! It’s their fault! Now, the only way to give you the free sh*t we promised you is to go to Canadian/UK-style single-payer government healthcare! That’s the only way to keep the wreckers and hoarders from stealing the pradise we promised you!’

    Look at what they did. Who understands it? It is a mess of ‘exchanges’ and penalties and subsidies and set-asides and exemptions that only a DC policy wonk can even begin to understand. And it is constructed specifically to fail. Look at the ’30-hour’ provision. All of a sudden, employers are restructuring their staffing to comply with the law’s provisions – the bastards! How dare they do, what we wrote into the law! And they all act surprised, and disgusted – like this was not exactly what they intended to have happen. Now they can demonize the insurers and the employers (for doing exactly what the law demands) and sell single-payer to the low-information voter as they only way out of the mess they so-carefully created.

    It’s brilliant. The Republicans got completely blind-sided again – because they assumed (as they always do) that the Democrats were being honest and above-board about their intentions.

    Within a year (directly after the 2014 elections), if the Evils hold onto the Senate, expect to see the whole of Obamacare replaced with single-payer. It will be sold as an ‘evolution’, or as a special program for the ‘tiny minority’ who ‘fall through the cracks’, but it was the intention all along and it will be morphed (maybe by stages) into the default system. Medicaid and Medicare will be folded into single-payer first, followed by everybody else.

    And then we can all enjoy the same homicidal incompetence that the victims of the NHS enjoy.



  • jdm

    At the rick of belaboring the obvious in this crowd, it seems worthwhile to state Fen’s Law: the Left doesn’t actually believe any of the things they lecture the rest of us about.

  • Chip

    Obama’s transition from Chief Snoop to reformer is far less ridiculous than the Economist’s journey from a classically liberal magazine to statist rag.

  • Nick (nice-guy) Gray

    We often hear about the NHS, and we have Medibank in Australia, but how do you rate such things? Does someone do cost-comparisons? To what private service are they compared. Does anyone know?

  • Paul Marks

    RRS – yes, I keep forgetting the world I am in (a rather big mistake on my part). Vileness pays in a vile world – and decency leads to suffering and death.

    llamas – yes this “Obamacare” system is DESINGED to fail (as Glenn Beck and others, including your good self, pointed out at the tine).

    Then the left will say “see the private providers have failed – we must have a SINGLE PAYER SYSTEM”.

    As you say – exactly what you they have planned all along.

    When will the mainstream media expose all this?

    After all there are recordings of Comrade Barack (and others) saying all this – years ago.

    The msm will expose all this at the same time that there is nice weather in Hell.

    The msm are part of the same ideological matrix as the education system.

    They are the left.

  • RRS

    I keep forgetting the world I am in (a rather big mistake on my part). Vileness pays in a vile world – and decency leads to suffering and death.


    If, as it seems, addressed to me, I will cavil with you. As you constantly demonstrate, you do not “forget.” You “keep track.” It seems the trends rather more than the conditions trouble you (and The Paul Marks Organization). You do observe the world that is as it came from what was and has been; and, what it is not that it could be; troubled by why that is so.

    Perhaps the telling difference between the “vile” and the “decent” persons can be found in how each regards other individuals. That does create vulnerabilities for the decent in confrontations with the vile; and, advantages for the motives of the vile. But, despite the exposures to risks of “suffering and death,” that is not the constant fate of decency.

    The motivations of decency do not seek “pay.” The motivations of the vile do lead to suffering and death.

    Be of good cheer.

  • RRS



    I Use The Paul Mark Organization as a convenient label for your range of thought and ideas.

  • Paul Marks

    RRS – I welcome the title “the Paul Marks Organisation”.

    As for me – I am half Irish and half Jewish and born and bred in England.

    No wonder I am weird.

    Certainly one can rise above ones background – but the default position is still there.

    The Jewish default position to intellectually examine things, and the Irish default position (even for a pathetic excuse for a man like me) is to fight – and the worse the odds the BETTER.

    As for England…..

    The English may be submissive but we (and I can say “we” as I was born and bred here) are good at grumbling.

    By the way – little cultural note.

    The Chief Constable of the Northern Ireland Police “Service” is a an Englishman with a habit of talking in a aggressive tone of voice (even when he says hello there seems to be an undercurrent of THREAT) – in England that would produce submission (although we would then grumble about him behind his back), in Ulster (unless I miss my guess about the culture) he is going to end up getting his head kicked in.

    The Ulsterman the Scots Irish “Redneck” (the people who won at the battle of King’s Mountain and so on) has not really changed.

    When threatened then do not submit – they attack.

    “But what about respect for the law”.

    Many Ulstermen (and women) have great respect for “The Law” – but they mean something very different than what a (Hobbes and Hume influenced) Englishman means by these words.

    A Jew (at least a believing Jew) would understand.

    As for the South (the Republic of Ireland) – it would be different, but not in a nice way.

    As my grandfather (James Power – born and bred an Irish Catholic although a London man) used to tell me – in his culture the practice would be to smile at such a man (to make friends with him).

    And then kill him (when he least expected it).



    But so is submission.