I was just in Helsinki on personal business, and bumped into a Finn who’s music concert promoter, and we had an invigorating discussion about European/Finnish politics. I laid down the case for liberty and freedom, but he rejected it, said he was happy as a clam to live within the system, paying his high taxes and adhering to the party line.
He rejected however, (laughably I might add) the fact that he was a believer in statism, a supporter of big government, as well as the fact that your liberty and freedom is directly tied to your property rights, whether the state can forcibly confiscate your wealth and redistribute to a third party. In other words, this successful businessman, is an ignoramus, fancifully believing he was a free individual (with certain responsibilities to the state) but remain relatively ”free” though the state exerts an unlimited amount of power against him. He is living in an illusion.
One can believe that they’re free, independent sovereigns, a fiction, but reality speaks otherwise. Things got really heated when I asked him what was the limit of government? If he’s happy to pay taxes, what then if they began to tax 75% of his earned income, then what? Oh, he’d then “leave for elsewhere.” Folks, during the Cold War, we called them dissidents, those who object to state coercion on the individual.
According to this clown, as long as the state squeezes him without bleeding him dry, then he’s happy to contribute to the welfare system, claiming it gave him a ”sense of security.” Free this and free that was bandied about, until I corrected him that nothing is ”free”, that it all comes from wealth confiscation which is coercion of the individual by the state.
He even dared to mention that the EU’s (a project he adored and was proud to contribute to, (though democracy -representational accountability- was greatly reduced because of it) winning of the Nobel peace prize is a sense of pride and a vindication of the project as a whole. Eh….the conversation ended as soon as I dismissed that award as a farce.
Richard North, 21/12/2012
His name may not mean much to us but, born into a Polish Jewish family from parents who survived Nazi concentration camps, Henryk M. Broder, now a naturalised German, journalist and author, is a powerful and respected figure in the German media.
For him then to rip the EU apart is quite significant. We are witnessing, he says, the last days of Europe. Not in the physical, rather the philosophical and metaphorical sense. Just as Karl Kraus in 1922, published his monumental work, “The Last Days of Mankind”, the “The Last Days of Europe” lie immediately ahead.
His piece, though, starts with a Russian proverb: there is no such thing as an ugly bride – just a shortage of vodka. From that one infers that you have to be drunk to see merit in the EU. But vodka or not, “lousy remains lousy”.
Broder thinks the Nobel Peace Prize award is a “silly idea”, not dissimilar to the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union giving itself awards for having made an extremely important contribution to peace and security in Europe and in the world.
As someone who spent the first years of his life in Poland, he adds, I have a slight allergy to the word “peace”: “not because I’m for the war, but because ‘peace’ is the general alibi with which any barbarism can be justified. The Berlin Wall was for us peacemaking or peacekeeping, but in any case inevitable”. Today, one would say there had been no alternative.
The EU, Broder says, is the most powerful attempt since the end of Socialism to disenfranchise citizens and undemocratise society. The EU does not solve problems, it is the problem.
We are told again and again that there is no alternative to the EU, since the breakup of the Union would not only mean the end of prosperity, but also the revival of long outmoded conflicts. Put into practice this means that we are asked to trust unconditionally those who drove the cart to the wall and now expect them to repair it.