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

It has been delightful to wallow in the grief of triggered leftists. Yes, their candidate lost. And no, they have neither self-awareness nor irony and that is bloody hilarious. But for classical liberals/libertarians or even smaller state Conservatives, the man who won is by no means our guy. Not by the longest of long chalks. Nor were most of his voters motivated by even the faintest approximation of our views. If we were rationally assessing what ideas won in the presidential election, we would be crying into our beers as much as our authoritarian enemies.

Not that I suggest we do so. I am far from depressed by Trump’s victory, though I agree with him in so few respects. Not least because our statist foes are about to relearn a proper fear of excessive state power and in particular of such undemocratic and unconstitutional devices as presidential executive orders.

– ‘Tom Paine

36 comments to Samizdata quote of the day

  • Cal

    Trump is already backpedalling on repealing Obamacare, and he’s not even in office yet.

  • PersonFromPorlock

    He’s being reported as backpedaling on repealing Obamacare, by a media that have not reported on him honestly in the past and don’t show many signs of doing so now.

    I think we just have to wait and see what he does.

  • Alisa

    Well, it’s from the WSJ – anyone has key to the gate in the paywall?

  • Kevin B

    The left has no shame. They will scream blue murder when Trump and the Republicans in Congress try to use the tools that the Dems have so cavalierly fashioned, but the moment they get back any semblance of power they will quickly pick up those tools and carry on.

    Whether Trump, McConnell, Ryan and the rest will stand up to the hue-and-cry or swiftly cave as usual for Reps remains to be seen.

    Of course the option of removing the ability for politicians to abuse state power will not be taken.

  • PapayaSF

    Huh, my comment disappeared. Was two links too many? Here’s another.

  • Shlomo Maistre

    Of course the option of removing the ability for politicians to abuse state power will not be taken.

    And what option is that exactly?

  • ajf

    He’s not your man. But that’s because having your man reach the US presidency is an impossibility. Libertarianism requires a society of high trust and low diversity. It’s not compatible with multiculturalism. Blacks and Hispanics are not natural libertarians. It’s very much a north west European ideology. You will never “win”.

  • NickM

    You need a TARDIS. Jo’burg ’bout 30 years ago.

  • ajf: Rubbish. Libertarianism may require a common cultural viewpoint (arguably), but it has absolutely nothing to do with the colour of ones skin.

  • the other rob

    With that bullshit nicely dealt with, might I suggest that we drop it, lest we inadvertently feed the troll?

    In other news, Legal Insurrection today introduced me to a marvelous comedian, Tom Walker, who plays “Jonathan Pie, Reporter”. I’d never heard of him until today, so assume that he came up after I left the UK.

    This article includes his latest clip. There’s a link in there to his Facebutt page, which has many more. I spent so long on there that SWMBO ended up dragging me out of my study.

  • Thailover

    The greatest ironies is that the Dems could have won running against Trump, a man who was fighting the GOP as much as he was fighting the DNC, the Slithery campaign and the media collusion.

    That is, they COULD have won…if they coronated a candidate with less (Il)legal and less (Im)moral baggage than Adolph Hitler. Hell, her own people called her money laundering machine “pay for play”. The Uranium One pay for play is transparently a case of treason.

  • Thailover

    Actually, he’s not backpeddling on Obamacare, as he’s always said that he plans on replacing it with something similar with a few tweeks…which wont work either BTW, as only freemaket forces work in a non-F*ed up way re: markets.

  • Thailover

    Oh, and in case anyone’s wondering; these riots are manufactured and paid for, not “organic” and not genuine in any sense.


    To put public pressure on republians to “compromise” with the druthers of dems in an air of reconciliation.

    Reps should not give a single fucking goddamned inch.


    Because they’ll be painted as Satan in ANY event, and these backstabbing Warlocks are simply machiavellian scumbags.

  • Actual Donald Trump interviews – since the media are concerning themselves with regaling us all with what they say he said.

    An actual Trump interview

    The BBC web site “Most Read” and “Most Viewed” listings seem to be being manipulated depending on the identity of the browser – as in a web client somewhere else (wayback.org in my particular case) gets different “news” content to to a UK browser client that’s very likely fingerprinted and “scored” elsewhere….

    This is simply / just an observation btw – no conspiracy here – but the possibilities are obvious. It could well be an attribute of a *very* dynamic audience environment – but the Wayback page “Most Popular” was just completely different …

    It would be interesting to hear from other folk what they see vs. say the same page at the same moment from wayback.org

    @Thailover – machiavellian? not really… more like 2yr olds paddying…

  • Mr Ed

    Are not these riots insurrection against the United States?

  • Jacob

    “Are not these riots insurrection against the United States?”
    They are riots. A phenomenon not unheard of. There were race riots in the past, student riots, etc.
    The problem now seems to be that the current administration is in no hurry to keep public order.

  • J Lee

    This quote perfectly sums up my attitude to Trump’s victory.

  • When I hear Fluffy talking about Public/Private partnerships I get worried. OTOH if anyone can make these monstrosities work it’s the Prince of Orange.

    The riots/demonstrations are causing enough trouble for ‘normal’ people that they might as well be paid for by the Trump 2020 campaign.

  • CaptDMO

    Public/private partnerships….
    Oh, Like Wollman Skating rink in Central Park?
    And after the investment payback was realized…..

  • Paul Marks

    If Mr Trump is in favour of getting rid of any Federal Government Departments or Agencies – I am not aware of it. I do not know what the left are upset about.

    Of course the historical Thomas (“Tom”) Paine was also, in terms of actual policy, a Bigger Government person.

  • Erik

    Make Adversarial Journalism Great Again?

  • Tom

    “Of course the historical Thomas (“Tom”) Paine was also, in terms of actual policy, a Bigger Government person”

    I wouldn’t dare to speak for him but have read all his works and admire them. He was for bigger government than existed then, certainly, but I doubt he’d support the elephant in a flea circus model we have today. Like all the founding fathers, he was very aware of the risks of an over-mighty state and viewed government as a necessary evil to be checked and balanced. The modern leftists who claim him are misguided in my view.

    Anyway, I don’t use his name because of his views. I adopted it as a nom de guerre 12 years ago because his most powerful writings, like Common Sense, were not much more than blog posts by modern standards. I saw him as a role model for exercising political influence using the pen not the sword. Call it “sympathetic magic” if you like. I can’t say the spell has been all that successful, yet!

  • Slartibartfarst


    He’s being reported as backpedaling on repealing Obamacare, by a media that have not reported on him honestly in the past and don’t show many signs of doing so now.
    I think we just have to wait and see what he does.

    Sounds like a good idea – and apparently a novel one too, judging by the way reporters of various bias, and other people, and for whatever reason, seem to have been jumping to conclusions about what they perceive Trump to have been signalling regarding what it was that he intends to do.

  • bobby b

    Wouldn’t it be interesting if Trump, recognizing that the media has little interest in telling us what he is really saying, decided to go with a weekly Fireside Chat out to the entire country?

    He very much enjoys speaking directly to his audience, and his audience seems to enjoy listening to him. I wonder if being able to play the wise elder weekly on national television might not help mellow his personality away from Trump The Candidate into President Trump. Not depending on the dishonest media filter would also help avoid the clashes I know we’re going to be experiencing as (for instance) the media tells us Trump now loves Obamacare.

    I see him in a developing stage right now. His ultimate imago could actually be quite good, or quite bad, depending on how much the fights with the press consume his capital.

  • staghounds

    It will be interesting to watch Trump say “X” from the oval office, and then have the rebuttal say “He just said M! and L! And Z! Your ears lie! And he grabs women!”

  • I see him in a developing stage right now. His ultimate imago could actually be quite good, or quite bad, depending on how much the fights with the press consume his capital.

    Yup the dice are in the air 😳 😆

  • Slartibartfarst

    @Perry de Havilland:

    Yup the dice are in the air ? ?

    Yes, quite so, and everybody seems to be trying to predict the outcome, according to their particular bias.

    There is an interesting and rather pragmatic prediction by one Gary North, here:
    Trump’s Revolution Is Over.

    I don’t really understand American politics, but I think I did understand what North was saying and it was educational – for me and my 15 y/o daughter, at any rate.

  • bobby b

    Gary North says:

    “There is going to be a growing sense of betrayal within the conservative movement.”

    North gets a lot right about the American governmental structure, and about what possible moves Trump could make to please conservatives and to serve conservative principles.

    He misses something very basic:

    Trump is a lifelong Democrat.

    He can’t betray something he never claimed to ascribe to. He didn’t run on conservatism; he ran on not being Hillary, on not being progressive, on not being Obama, on valuing (some) constitutional principles.

    WYSIWYG. If conservatives feel betrayed by Trump’s decisions, they were naive and delusional conservatives. If Trump lives up to every one of his promises – if he does everything he said he’s going to do – he’ll serve “middle class values” (whatever they might be) but any service to the principles of conservatism will be accidental.

  • Slartibartfarst

    @bobby b: Ah, thanks. I had not registered that he was a Democrat. That fills in a few question marks for me. But is “Democrat” how he would describe himself?
    I did perceive him as as being politically disinterested – in comparison to the other candidate. Probably not agnostic though – and so it seems.

    By the way, I am a planet shaper.

  • Alisa

    My take on Trump having been a Democrat is that he had to deal with local politicians (you know, the people who helped him take over others’ property to build his casinos), and in his case they happened to be Democrats (NJ, NYC). Other than that, he does not strike me as a particularly political person either – other than being a bully, which is a prerequisite.

  • bobby b

    “But is “Democrat” how he would describe himself?”

    Today? No. Today, he would just call himself President, and chuckle. But, for his entire adult life, until approximately six months before he decided to run in the Republican primary, he called himself “Democrat.”

    He was a significant contributor to Hillary Clinton’s campaign against Obama in 2008.

    In many respects he is, and ran, to the left of Clinton. In others, he is to her right. In some, he ran to both her left and her right. He is Schrodinger’s Politician.

  • Dom

    It’s nice to see ‘Tom Paine’ is blogging again. For awhile there he gave it up in favor of keeping a travel log. I have a lot of catching up to do.