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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

Finally, on both sides of the Atlantic our citizens are confronted by yet another danger; one firmly within our control. This danger is invisible to some but familiar to the Poles: the steady creep of government bureaucracy that drains the vitality and wealth of the people. The West became great not because of paperwork and regulations but because people were allowed to chase their dreams and pursue their destinies.

– Donald Trump speaking in Warsaw today.

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42 comments to Samizdata quote of the day

  • Paul Marks

    In this at least President Trump is correct.

    The Administrative State (the permanent government) is a nightmare.

    The nightmare of Colbert (the Chief Minister of Louis XIV – the Sun King) who even insisted that every private merchant in France take exams – to prove themselves worthy to trade (prove it by bureaucratic testing).

    The idea that the state should (for example) decide “fair wages” and “just prices” is ancient – ancient, but also demented.

  • PeterT

    Very Reagan. Only 6 months in but so far he’s certainly ‘best President since Reagan’. Let’s see he manages to keep it up.

  • Paul Marks

    Meanwhile the BBC was (yet again) obsessed with “Russian hacking of the American election” – again implying (but not actually saying) that the voting was “hacked”.

    If formally challenged the BBC would reply “no we meant that the Russians disclosed stuff about Hillary Clinton”.

    That is never what you say – you imply something very different to that BBC. You are SCUM BBC.

  • Perry Metzger (New York, USA)

    Even a broken clock is right twice a day. He’s against free trade (he’s basically a mercantilist) and has dozens of truly foolish economic and political views, but on this, he’s certainly correct.

  • PapayaSF

    I’ve been telling libertarians for a year that Trump was pretty darn good in a lot of ways. This is one.

    Perry Metzger, I’ll take a patriotic mercantilist who doesn’t believe in flooding the country with the Third World over an open borders statist like Hillary, even if she believed in free trade (which she doesn’t, really). The latter is far more destructive of liberty.

    Besides, tough talk on trade is also a negotiating tactic. I don’t think Trump is really a pure mercantilist.

  • It was a good speech. I thought it effective he used the pope reference to set up a reply that all the smart set listening expected to be “We want liberty” but instead was “We want God.”

    He can certainly state the problems – and if that alone is far from solving them, it’s a big step closer than all those who are too cowed by PC to do even that.

    One sign it was a good speech was that the BBC gave us relatively little of it, pivoting away to how unpopular he would be in Germany, how “his intelligence agencies” were sure of Russian hacking last year, etc. Their coverage could have been even worse – in Greg Dyke’s day it would have been even worse, and maybe it was worse on CNN – but I endorse Paul Marks (July 6, 2017 at 8:19 pm).

  • He’s the only western politician even attempting to keep the barbarians from the gates. Outside eastern Europe in any case.

  • Eric

    Even a broken clock is right twice a day. He’s against free trade (he’s basically a mercantilist) and has dozens of truly foolish economic and political views, but on this, he’s certainly correct.

    Trump built up quite a bit of good will with me because of his first SCOTUS appointment. He says a lot of dumb stuff on Twitter (the platform is made for saying dumb stuff), but so far what he’s actually done has been pretty good.

  • bobby b

    I remember the voicing of quite a bit of disdain on these pages because, during the campaign, he made anti-NATO sounds.

    Judging from what he’s done so far, he’s going to make NATO into a better and stronger organization.

    More importantly, though, Hillary Clinton remains Not The President of the USA.

  • Schrodinger's Dog

    Perhaps not quite “Tear down that wall, Mr. Gorbachev,” but pretty good nonetheless.

  • Mr Ed

    I would hazard a guess that Mrs May would rather recite the Koran at Westminster Abbey than echo Mr Trump’s words.

  • In other news, I see it is The Sage’s birthday today. Happy birthday!

  • Alisa

    As I said elsewhere, many grumpy returns 😛

  • Dr Evil

    What President Trump said in that quote is very true. It’s also much easier if you have some money to back you up.

  • Jacob

    At last he got his speech writer right.

    and: “More importantly, though, Hillary Clinton remains Not The President of the USA.”

    The difference between Trump and those lofty and learned conservatives and libertarians of the Republican Party is that it was Trump that kept the Hillary-Obama-SJW crowd out of the White House, the others were impotent.

  • Jacob

    “We want God”

    At last Trump found religion… Some speech writer thought the Poles would like it. He was wrong, it was not the best or most cheered part of the speech.

    But the speech as a whole was full of flattery for the Poles, and was strong, and I think the Poles loved it.

  • Jacob

    Also, it was a heads-up, good delivery. He never read from notes, and I didn’t notice a tele-prompter. Seems he has learned all 36 min of it by heart.

  • Alisa

    At last Trump found religion

    I did not know he’d ever lost it.

  • Laird

    I don’t have the patience (or the interest) to listen to a 36-minute speech, when I can simply read the transcript in 10 or less. So here it is, for anyone interested. And it is a good speech, probably as good a speech as Trump is capable of delivering (I’m not a big fan of his style).

    But as to the “We want God” line, that is not Trump speaking for himself. That is Trump quoting the Polish crowd chanting to Pope John Paul II in 1979. “A million Polish people did not ask for wealth. They did not ask for privilege. Instead, one million Poles sang three simple words: ‘We Want God.’ ” Whether Trump has “found” religion or not I don’t know (or, frankly, care). But this line doesn’t provide any evidence of that one way or the other.

  • Alisa

    Remember when he said “I’m a Presbyterian, I’m a Presbyterian, I’m a Presbyterian !” ?

    So far so good, he’s pissed off all the right people, but I’m still worried about his ignorance of history.

  • Alisa

    Taylor, I’m afraid I’m missing your point…

  • Yesterday, a colleague (not religious) who had listened to the speech discussed it with me. He said that as the “we want” began his mind filled in the boilerplate “We want freedom” so the unexpected (to him) ending was effective.

    In 1979, the communists having reluctantly and warily allowed the Polish pope to visit, it was maybe safer to chant “we want God” than “we want freedom” and of course the first strongly implied the second. However Trump’s speech had its choice of many quotes to select from. I give my colleague’s reaction FYI.

  • Julie near Chicago

    Wh00ps, Alisa: “The Sage”? Our S. of K.??

    bobby: Amen to that. Especially your last line. :>)))

  • Alisa

    One and the same, Julie.

  • Julie near Chicago

    Ahah! Thank you, Anonymous Eastern Mediterranean Source. ;>))

  • Jacob

    Laird,
    Yes, Trump quoted the chant of the million Poles who came to hear pope JP2. “We want God”.
    But someone (Trump’s speechwriter) chose to include this in Trump’s speech. Trump’s speech was intended to extract cheers from the Poles and it did. But this part, seems to me, fell flat.

    Neither Trump nor his audience are very religious, so it sounded hollow.

  • If you say “I’m a Presbyterian” three times and click your heels together you too could be President.

  • John Galt III

    Trump is the smartest politician in my lifetime. Not smartest guy necessarily, but smartest politician. He crushed every Republican and then beat “Sister Frigidaire” in the election. The Socialist/Marxist media is tied up in knots by Trump and 60% trust Trump over the MSM. You guys have Pravda/BBC which just as bad. Your politicians ought to go after them hard. Take their damn money away or roll over and die.

    Bush, Bush, Romney and the other RINO’s got run over by the MSM and acted like pussies. Trump shoves it up the MSM’s rear where the sun don’t shine. Live in ‘fly over country” like I do and this guy is loved. Trump loves his country just as much as Obama loves Islam and Cultural/Economic Marxism. What a breath of fresh air Mr. Trump is.

  • bobby b

    “Neither Trump nor his audience are very religious, so it sounded hollow.”

    90%+ of Poles call themselves Catholic. He was quoting a Polish pope. The version of the speech cited above – CNN’s version – makes the crowd sound distant and quiet, but I’ve heard other versions that make them sound loud and enthusiastic. I think it depends on who did the editing.

  • Henry Kaye

    I fell to wondering recently what governments did 200 years ago? They would have provided an army and a navy but they had no welfare state, no income tax, no NHS, no pensions – so, what did they concern themselves with? And yet the country did quite well and, in fact, became one of the world’s great powers. Today we have Westminster with a ruling party and a huge “front bench”; we have local councils and we have a never ending stream of committees and small government appointed groups all imposing their influence according to their own convictions. Things weren’t good 200 years ago and some of the difficulties of the poorer people were looked at to some extent by philanthropists of the day. It doesn’t sound as it was very good but people survived and the country prospered. Is this what Trump means? If so I would agree with him.

  • Alisa

    Taylor: 😛

  • Alisa

    Indeed, Henry. And, all the huge improvements of the lot of the poor and the unfortunate over those two centuries have been achieved despite the various governments, not thanks to them.

  • Alisa

    As to Trump, color me much less skeptical than I was before the election.

  • Paul Marks

    Henry Kaye – it was not just “200 hundred years ago” – none of things you mention existed in the United States till 1913 (income tax), pension (for some people) were in 1935, health care was in 1965.

    In little Andorra none of this stuff existed till 1966 – were old people freezing to death in the snow in 1965?

    In the Cayman Islands it was even later – and……

    The interesting thing is that almost as soon as these government services are created people think they have always existed, and believe the old-poor-and-sick would die without them. The brainwashing is that powerful.

  • Derek Buxton

    He is acting as a leader who believes and works for his Country and Peoples, would that we had such a leader! He also sees the Global warming agenda as the scam it is, confirmed by the latest information that the Mann lawsuit looks set to back Dr. Ball setting the “warming” scam as what it is, fraud on a global scale. What a shame our Mrs May did not support him on the Paris Accord

  • bobby b

    ” . . . the latest information that the Mann lawsuit looks set to back Dr. Ball setting the “warming” scam as what it is, fraud on a global scale.”

    Looks like Michael Mann decided to deliberately defy the judge’s order that he disclose to defendant Ball certain of his data sets, which they requested as proof of their defense assertion that what they said about Mann was true.

    With this refusal, Mann’s likely going to be found to be in contempt of court, and the judge can then dismiss Mann’s lawsuit as one possible penalty, which he previously indicated that he will do.

    Maybe Mann realized that disclosure of his data was the last thing he needed, and that losing the lawsuit was worth avoiding that? The earlier ruling that the data had to be disclosed wasn’t completely expected.

    I haven’t seen anything relating to Steyn’s part of the lawsuit. If he joined in the request for the data sets, he might be out, too.

  • Johnnydub

    “He says a lot of dumb stuff on Twitter (the platform is made for saying dumb stuff), but so far what he’s actually done has been pretty good.”

    As the more astute commentators have noticed, Trump uses Twitter to distract the MSM. He throws out some chum, the MSM drives themselves nuts chasing it, all the while his agenda goes forward with very little press scrutiny.

    Remember the Veritas leak of CNN – after a day and a half of whinging about the Paris accords, it was straight back to the Russia nonsense…

  • Tarrou

    The ending of that speech was truly great. Trump’s delivery was less than stellar, but if JFK had given that speech in the ’60s, schoolchildren would be memorizing the last couple paragraphs today.

  • Thailover

    Paul, What I’m leery of is the nasty tactic of inventing false charges in order to “probe further” and then trying to hang people on procedural offenses or “crimes”, arguing that the “trumped up charges” (pun intended) gives license to witch hunt. In the case of the fake Russia hacking crap, they might make a case of Trump telling Comey that he really hopes Comey doesn’t have to hammer Flynn, subjectively interpreting that as obstruction. Consider what happened to Martha Stewart. The ridiculous charge was insider trading, which she was exonerated of, but convicted of “Obstruction of an agency proceeding”. In other words, she was unhelpful to those out to destroy her.

  • Thailover

    Tarrou, JFK would be considered a Republican today (Starting preemptive wars, lowering income taxes,”Christian values”, etc), but historically he has a D by is name, so he has license to bugger Marilyn Monroe in the Oval Office without serious critisism.

  • Thailover

    Henry Kaye said, “[Governments] would have provided an army and a navy but they had no welfare state”

    Income taxation didn’t start in America until 1913. I often ask American statists where colony/state government recieved their funding for the 100-200 years before that. They never know and I don’t tell them, telling them to do their own homework. Take a wild guess if they ever bother.

  • Thailover

    “We Want God”.

    The context in Trump’s speech was the human spirit. As noted by self declared wizard Alan Moore, (paraphrasing others too of course), one place gods and devils undoubtedly exist in in the human mind. Ditto for the human spirit, which is not defined as something which survives the shedding of our mortal coil.

    I’m an unabashed atheist, but that doesn’t mean strict materialist (or Marxist) as Leftists would have you believe. I find the subject and concepts of spirit and spirituality fascinating, especially animism, alchemy and even the distilling of “spirits” (yes, “spirits”, historically speaking, are the spirit of the distilled materials). Even the equally unabashed Ayn Rand lionized the human spirit.

    Theism bolsters the human spirit, (in my opinion, not Rand’s), even, ironically, when religious tomes say in no vague fashion that their god is a tyrannical despot. “Good people” invariably twist this into something good and uplifting. It doesn’t matter if gods and devils literally exist, just as it didn’t matter in Orwell’s novel Nineteen Eighty Four whether Big Brother and Emmanuel Goldstein literally existed in the story. They were effective whether existent or not, serving as a Jungian subconscious projection and imagery. It doesn’t matter if Odin is allegory, and his stories fables, they have lessons to teach us about ourselves and the world. One can argue that gods and devils are jungian archetype projections from our subconscious.

    The context was the unbreakable Polish spirit, i.e. human spirit. Now, whether the Catholic Church quashes the human spirit is another subject entirely.