Tyranny of the Minority

To have a functioning society, we expect the government to provide a framework allowing us to go about our everyday lives without fear for the safety of our families, property, or ourselves and protect the vast majority from those seeking to threaten or restrict us. 

In our Republic, we’re supposed to let the majority rule on most things while protecting minorities or individuals from the “tyranny of the majority.” The fear of even transitory majorities taking advantage of others led to the promise of history’s first written protections even against the majority to gain acceptance of our Constitution—the first ten amendments, known as the” Bill of Rights,” allayed fears. These protections are a large part of the genius of our constitutional government.

Minorities take over our streets, making many parts of our cities disastrous. Minorities commit crimes with small or no price. Too much of a good thing can make you sick. In many cases today, the tail wags the dog.

How did our protection of minorities and even individuals morph into a “tyranny of the minority”? In his book “Rules for Radicals, ” community organizer Saul Alinsky proposed a rule that makes “the enemy live up to their own rules.” This rule has meant appealing to the majority’s best nature to lure the majority to bend to your will.

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The Wrong Man

In the past, I’ve said bureaucracies are a form of permanent government. The FBI, CIA, and IRS wield immense power. No matter who we elect, these people stay and can have an agenda. If these organizations use their capabilities to affect the choice of their nominal elected masters, democracy is in trouble.

These organizations attempted to interfere in the last two presidential elections. If we didn’t know it already from the years-long Mueller investigation turned up no evidence of collusion between Donald Trump and Russia, the recently released Durham Report details how the FBI pursued a case that originated in the Hillary Clinton Campaign with no factual basis.

The Mueller investigation cast a pall over the early years of the Trump administration. Bias towards one political party and its candidate is a central theme in the Durham report. However, it didn’t cost Trump a narrow 2016 win.

We can’t say the same about the 2022 election. The New York Post broke the Hunter Biden laptop story a few weeks before the election, indicating at least highly unethical behavior on the part of the Biden Family. Within 48 hours, 51 former intelligence senior people signed and released a letter claiming it looked like a Russian operation. The letter received wide media circulation, while some media outlets banned linking to the New York Post Story. Biden used the letter to blunt Trump’s attempt to bring up what was found on Hunter Biden’s laptop in the last debate before the election.

The FBI had the computer for months and had to know if it was Hunter Biden’s and if the contents were genuine. The Director of National Intelligence, John Ratcliffe, said there was no evidence of a link between Russia and the laptop; he received little press notice. FBI Director Christopher Wray’s silence was deafening. 

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The End Of Discussion

Many in the media cheered on Dominion’s defamation suit against Fox News. They reveled in embarrassing emails showing some Fox on-air personalities doubted the Trump camp’s assertions of rigging voting machines. Going to trial might’ve produced even more damaging information on Fox and billions in damages, destroying the network.

Fox and Dominion settled out of court $787.5 million. Some were relieved it was over before Fox suffered more significant damage while cutting off the harm disappointed others. Both sides will rue this settlement.

The crux of Dominion’s case is Fox’s on-air opinion people allowed Trump representatives to make false assertions about Dominion voting machines on their programs. Emails showed some Fox luminaries had grave doubts about the Trump camp’s position. To them, his case was unsupported by facts. 

None of the Fox people questioning the Trump position were experts in the field. Being Fox News, many favored Trump’s re-election and expected to give his lawyers the space to make their case. Their opinion is just that, opinion. In any case, a president’s attornies and representatives making claims is news. Controversy is their business.

Let both sides present their case and let the viewers decide.

Fox on-air personality Maria Bartiromo never hid the fact she favored Trump and gave the Trump people space on her shows to present their case. She also invited the Dominion CEO to present his side. He refused.

As with most controversies, People in media can have mixed thoughts on the fairness of elections. In the future, differing opinions may be limited in media for fear of being sued. The last thing we need to do is cut off discussion.

Recently we’ve had ongoing controversies over the Covid vaccines—people such as Alex Berenson and now Presidential candidate Robrt Kennedy Jr. cast a critical eye on them. I praised Berenson’s original book on the Covid lockdowns but was startled by his subsequent book disparaging the vaccines. It turns out Berenson was right to point out the vaccines didn’t prevent covid spread, as I and so many wrongly assumed. 

Kennedy has a long history of opposing vaccines. However, in some circumstances, his opposition to the covid Vaccines is on firm ground. However, he is polling 20% for the Democratic presidential nomination. One could see it as a stopped clock is right twice a day, but he made some excellent points. Shouldn’t he be heard?

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A Pig In A Poke

Lately, I have written a lot about unintended consequences. An investment background taught me always to remember what could go wrong. Balancing factors affecting the present and the future provides not only a gauge if a move is going well but when your assumptions are incorrect. Focusing only on rewards ignores the risk-reward ratio.

 The earlier you admit when you’re wrong, the less you lose. Let your successes run on the right calls and cut losses short when you’re wrong. Being human, we will be wrong sometimes. It’s how we handle it that determines overall success. 

Two disparate things have such apparent unintended consequences, and we need to discuss them before we do significant harm—first, the rush to impose electric cars. The second is the Fox-Dominion settlement. 

While many of the same drawbacks exist in the government’s headlong push into solar and wind power, autos occupy a special place in our lives. The second-largest purchase for most of us, we have a more intimate relationship with our cars. Few know what we pay per kilowatt of electricity, but we see the gas price.

Under the proposed Environmental Protection Agency rules could require 67% of all new vehicles sold in 2032 to be all-electric. This rule is industrial policy run amok. Even if you think the actions we take here in the U.S. will have a meaningful effect on the earth’s temperature (and it won’t), this action has a real possibility of being a costly boondoggle.

Electric vehicles (E.V.s) are competitive with gas-powered ones only when you get a substantial government subsidy and run it for many years. Even this computation may be off when you figure out E.V. battery life.

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Anticipating 2024

Recently I criticized Florida Governor Ron Desantis for characterizing the Ukraine War as a “territorial dipsute.” His statement trivialized a significant issue. While it may have helped him with some Republican voters, he came across as a lightweight. Presidents have to deal with major foreign policy issues in greater depth.

Now the Governor has signed an after six weeks ban on abortions. There is no reason to believe DeSantis isn’t solidly pro-life, but this may hurt him in a general election. On the other hand, it may help him to get the nomination.

Evangelicals and others with strong religious beliefs tend to be pro-life. They made up a good part of Trump’s winning 2016 coalition. However, since the 2022 election, Trump has been intimating the abortion issue cost the Republicans and explains their poorer-than-expected showing. This position is self-serving, as the only other explanation for the failures is the loyalty of most losing candidates to Trump himself.

Whatever Trump’s motive, this is causing a breach between the Ex-president and the pro-life movement. DeSantis looks more attractive to this vital group for the nomination. He needs to erode the Trump base, and this signing could lop off a big chunk. It may hurt him in the general election, but first, you must get the nomination.  

The focus on abortion, while AI and its medical implications are in the news, got me thinking about how these two issues interconnect in ways nobody is talking about.

Earlier, I wrote how the best compromise on abortion is a ban after 15 weeks. Testing and even surgery on the fetus can follow shortly after that time. We have ultrasounds of the little person, with some of us saying that’s my grandkid. Most developed nations have coalesced around 14-16 weeks, possibly for these reasons.

I alluded to testing in the future, leading to abortions we haven’t thought about. While we haven’t found the single “Gay Gene,” something programs people that way before birth. Whatever the code or combination, eventually, we will find it.

 China’s one-child policy combined with abortion on demand is a cautionary tale about parental preference. Most couples are limiting their families to 1-2 children. Would many parents elect not to have one or their only child be gay, trans, or abnormal? The severe female shortage in China should give us pause.

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