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

“Capitalism isn’t perfect, but there is no perfect system, and fantasies of a world in which there are no conflicts, no borders, no pollutants, no waste, and no crime are simply that: fantasies. Capitalism has been the best means ever devised of mitigating these problems – betting everything on an unfounded pipe dream is dangerous, illogical and should not be entertained in the 21st century. It may not sound exciting but the change we need will not come from revolution, but controlled, steady and logical improvements to our existing society.”

Joshua Taggart, writing in response to the latest pollutant to come out of the brain of George Monbiot. (I hadn’t heard from Mr Monbiot lately, but he’s still there, calling for some sort of totalitarian order where growth and material advancement are strictly regulated, by people such as him. He really is quite something.)

19 comments to Samizdata quote of the day

  • the last toryboy

    And to think Monbiot is actually at the saner end of the Green spectrum, given he approves of nuclear power – and got some abuse for that from fellow travellers.

  • Dr Evil

    Yes he is quite something and a short word, four letters, beginning with T and ending with T with a word beginning with F in front of it.

  • Stonyground

    Robert Fisk gave his name to a process of going through a written piece and refuting it line by line. Likewise George Monbiot gave us the epithet Barking Moonbat to describe someone with a lot of crackpot ideas. Not the kind of people that sane people listen to.

  • Paul Marks

    Essentially George Monbiot has already won – most Western governments, and most Corporations, are committed to his policy of the control of people from the cradle to the grave. The justifications vary – but the policy objective, control of the population from the cradle to the grave, remains the same. At international conferences (such as those of the utterly despicable “World Economic Forum”) there might as well be a giant sign with “Death to Liberty!” written upon it.

    Will it work? Of course not – it will be a disaster. For example, having money lending decided POLITICALLY (by what the call in America “Social and Environmental Governance”, SEG, scores) rather than the lending out of Real Savings of cash-money (gold, silver – whatever commodity money it is) for productive industry, is a disaster. We have “capitalism” without capital – without Real Savings of cash money (indeed the money itself is just credit, book keeping tricks, or government threats – “fiat”, command, “money”).

    And the idea that government spending and government regulations (controlling everything) should be unlimited – is also a disaster. This world will not work.

    But the decision has been made – we live in the world of George Monbiot, or we soon will. Those of us who will live through it (unlikely to include me) – it will collapse, but the collapse will itself be terrible.

    If you oppose Monbiot world – well then you are “against the Queen who has served this land all her life” – and no one wants to oppose the Queen, who is 95 years of age and has indeed served faithfully all her life.

    As for Joshua Taggart – he is defending “capitalism”, freedom, as if it had not been dying (being gradually murdered by government, credit bubble bankers, and allied “Woke” corporations) for many years.

    “Capitalism”, freedom, is NOT quite dead – but it has been horribly mutilated (over many years) and is clearly bleeding to death.

    Contra Hayek, freedom does not just appear without anyone consciously wanting it – and it does not last without people understanding it, wanting it, and being prepared to struggle for it, if-need-be lay down their lives for it.

    In the end what matters is ideas (beliefs) and neither the education system (the schools and universities) nor Big Business (the banks and so on) have been controlled by people of sound principles, for a very long time. Indeed they have been controlled by people of terrible principles – for a very long time.

    Hence Monibot world.

  • Paul Marks

    Still – we do have free will (moral agency), and whilst that remains (in spite of the endless conditioning from the Behaviour Modification teams, “nudge units”, and the rest) there remains some hope.

  • William H. Stoddard

    To paraphrase Churchill, capitalism is the worst economic system that has been tried, except for all the others.

  • Paul Marks

    No Mr Stoddard – freedom “capitalism” is a very good economic system – but it has been in horrible decline (slowly being murdered) for many years.

    As for Winston Churchill – great mean in many ways, but not on economics. After all, to give just one example (I could give very many), this was the man who set up “Labour Exchanges” in the 1900s in response to the rise in unemployment – but it did not occur to him that the Trade Union Acts of 1875 and 1906 (he voted for the 1906 Act) were the cause of this unemployment.

    “We must do X, to deal with this problem – the problem I have just helped create”.

  • Paul Marks

    To clear up one possible confusion – the word “capitalism” is sometimes used to describe large scale industry – factories and so on.

    For example, England had a, basically, free economy in 1688 (although there were some government taxes and benefits – and there was censorship of publications), but there little large scale industry.

    In the Soviet Union in 1935 there was a lot of industry (there had also been a lot of industry in 1914 – the idea that the old Russia did not have lots of factories and so on, is a myth) – but there was no freedom.

    The state has been on the rise in the United Kingdom since about 1870 – at what point in the rise of statism does it no longer make sense to talk about a free economy?

    For example, for many years I was a security guard.

    Let us say I was still young and fit – I could not be a Security Guard today as it now requires a “license” (the Common Law recognises no such “crime” as practicing a trade without a piece of paper called a “license” or “permit” – but then Chief Justice Sir Edward Coke, 1610 the case of Dr Bohham, no longer applies) – and even if I wanted to spend money for this “license” (and had the money to spend) I would have to pass the “training”.

    The first section of the training for the license is the Diversity and Inclusion section.

    I suspect that “FUCK OFF” is not the answer they want.

    Apart from that – we now live a society where the monetary and financial system is “fiat” (i.e. command, order) money, and Credit Bubble (as opposed to Real Savings) banking, and where government spending is about half the economy – the other half dependent on the already mentioned Credit Bubble financial system, and saturated with regulations.

    As I have said – freedom is not quite dead, but it makes no sense at all to write as if there is basically a sound system under threat from George Monibot. Policy is already largely his side of the fence.

    What we have now is a lot closer to what George Monibot wants than it is to liberty – and it is being moved in his direction, not ours.

  • Paul Marks

    “Capitalism is not perfect…”

    The very first words imply that problems we have are the fault of “capitalism” – liberty.

    That is is NOT the case.

    Although, yes, human choices (liberty) are not perfect – I concede that. Although I hold that the use of force and fear (interventionism) makes things worse, rather than better.

  • Paul Marks

    Today it was announced that all British banks and financial institutions will have to produce plans on how they will use finance to “decarbonise” the economy – these plans to be checked by the government and activist groups.

    No doubt the Credit Bubble banks (which depend on the Bank of England dole) will say how delighted they are with what the Americans call “Social and Environmental Governance” score system (the Chinese call it the Social Credit system).

    This is not capitalism, this is Monibot world.

    “Capitalism is not perfect, but….”.


    Not much capitalism (liberty) left around here.

    And for those fools who look to Mr Putin as a saviour…

    There is yet another “Covid” lockdown in Moscow, and Mr Putin is in close alliance with the People’s Republic of China – which had the Social Credit system (Environment and Social Governance score system) before we did.

    If you want to know what the international establishment, the governments and corporations that cooperate with the World Economic Forum and the United Nations, and-so-on, have in mind – then Orwell’s image is apt.

    Imagine a human face with a boot stamping down upon it – for ever.

    That is what they want – that is what all of this is about.

  • Paul Marks

    For nit pickers….

    Yes it is the Environment and Social Governance (ESG) score system.

  • APL

    Paul Marks: And for those fools who look to Mr Putin as a saviour…

    For my part, I don’t look at President Putin as a saviour, I look at him as one of the dwindling world leaders who put their national interest first. Oppose much of the ‘New World Order‘.

    I don’t expect freedom or liberty from President Putin, but then I no longer have any expectation of liberal or libertarian policies from the Tory party.

    In some respects President Putin represents some of the policies that we might have once expected from the Tory party, so in that respect he and his government are better than that we in the UK currently have.

    Which is not to say I think Kier Starmer’s rabble would be any better.

  • Sam Duncan

    The state has been on the rise in the United Kingdom since about 1870 – at what point in the rise of statism does it no longer make sense to talk about a free economy?

    I think the only reason few said it in so many words back in the 1970s is that there was the Soviet Bloc to compare it to, which was clearly far, far worse. But we’re at that point again and the only comparison is China, which, far from being a different world entirely, just seems to be a step or two ahead of us.

  • Nemesis

    Paul Marks
    November 2, 2021 at 9:10 pm
    “Still – we do have free will (moral agency), and whilst that remains (in spite of the endless conditioning from the Behaviour Modification teams, “nudge units”, and the rest) there remains some hope.”

    Do you follow the wisdom of Laura Dodsworth?


  • Exasperated

    It sure does seem like most governments of the “advanced” countries are about concentrating wealth and power in fewer and fewer hands. In some ways that is the opposite of capitalism.
    I can’t speak for after 2008, but at least until then, there were powerful Democrats who understood, at a fundamental level, that Capitalism is the engine of innovation and progress. It may not be the only engine, but it is exponentially more adaptive, efficient and faster. My definition of capitalism is based on freedom to choose and investment in continuous improvement, such as innovations in organization, materials, distribution, marketing, processes, financing……, specialization. It is not static but adaptive and in flux. Its hallmark used to be a robust middle class. Of course, the Corporatists are trying to capture the power of capitalism for themselves, while decrying it through their “Woke” “tools”. They use the power of “Der Staat Uber Alles”, to suppress or buy out competition, to suppress entrepreneurship, and to erect entry barriers, consolidating economic power in their own self serving and greedy hands. My guess is that whoever manages to hang onto the engine that is Capitalism, wins. Look at China, they didn’t get to where they are on their own, they were handed billions of dollars worth of hard won IP, as well as, manufacturing and organization “know how” by our skimming class. And still, they have to spy and get around security measures to acquire cutting edge stuff.
    And, of course, there is counterfeiting and sloppy quality control. Lest we forget, it was our own skimming class that tilted the competitive playing field in favor of third world supply chains, riddled with coerced and child labor. In the 80s and 90s, I think the first corporations, who took manufacturing off shore, were just cutting corners, dodging fair labor practices, getting around environmental regs, looking for cheaper energy, and getting away from having to grease the wheels for any project they wanted to build, plus obviously that was the price of entry into the Chinese market. Now, I don’t know how anyone startup can hope to compete with the economies of scale that are inherent in this economy.
    Just a thought, for the individual just trying to live their life, what’s the difference between socialism and Hitech crony capitalism.

  • Paul Marks

    Exasperated – the concentration of wealth is a natural consequence of high taxes and regulations (such as licensing laws), which tend to exclude new entries in a market.

    But it is also, overwhelmingly, the consequence of Credit Money expansion – as you may well know it is called the “Cantillon Effect” after Richard Cantillon who pointed it out some 300 years ago.

    This is well know, after all even Mr Putin’s “RT” gloatingly points it out (almost every day) – as his wealth relies on natural resources (which he and his pals stole) rather than creating money-from-nothing – which the Western crooks (sorry I mean “respected political and business leaders”) rely on for their wealth. Both east and west are crooks – but they are different sorts of crook (they have a different racket).

    So, yes, APL – you have a point. Mr Putin is a thief and a murderer – but he is not a member of the gang that rules the Western world, we are not likely to see children sexually mutilated in the name of “Trans Rights” in Russia, and we are not likely to see blackouts due to “fighting the Climate Change Emergency” there either.

    Sam Duncan – as you say even the People’s Republic of China is not much more statist than us now, and it has many times the population.

    The West, back in the days of the demented Mao, used to say that Chinese numbers were countered by our greater economic freedom – sadly that claim can no longer be made with any real credibility.

  • Paul Marks


    “Behaviour Insight Team” – yes that is what the Compatibilists (or this particular gang of them) are calling themselves these days.

    Laura Dodsworth is correct (I do not follow her – perhaps I should), it is no shock at all that Sky News (owned by NBC Comcast – the rest of Sky is owned by the equally pro totalitarian Disney Corporation) is in alliance with these people – it is what one would expect.

    They do not seek to convince by logical argument and evidence (on this – or anything else), they seek to manipulate the mind – as they follow Thomas Hobbes, David Hume and co, on what the mind is (i.e. the implicit denial of a soul – a true “I”).

    Perhaps they are correct and humans are worthless scum fit only to be enslaved or exterminated, or perhaps (perhaps) they are MISTAKEN. We shall see – or, rather, I hope you will see. I will not be about.

  • Paul Marks

    It has been a long time coming.

    After all the “Club of Rome” was in the 1960s, Dr Schwab’s book pushing “Stakeholder Capitalism” (FASCISM – the Corporate State) came out in 1971, the World Economic Forum was created years later, and Agenda 21 (we have moved to Agenda 2030 now) was agreed as long ago as President Herbert Walker Bush and Prime Minister John Major.

    It was agreed some 30 years ago that even the moderate freedom that Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher stood for was too much – that what was needed was control from the cradle to the grave (for our own good of course) in a New World Order – anyone who objected was to be smeared as a “Conspiracy Theorist” even if they just cited the documents around Agenda 21 and all the rest of it.

    Do not blame the first President Bush or Prime Minister John Major – even then they were just the tip of the iceberg, pushing what the “educated” establishment supported, without (I suspect) really understanding what was gradually being done.

    Even as far back as Woodrow Wilson and Richard Ely (more than a century ago) the educated establishment despised liberty, and wanted unlimited government power.

    Social Reform, Social Justice – call tyranny (despotism) whatever you like. These days it is Agenda 2030 or “Sustainable Development” under “Stakeholder Capitalism”.

  • Paul Marks

    Again, just in case someone still does not know, this is NOT about C02 emissions – just as it was NOT about Covid 19.