Tuesday, October 05, 2010

DEPRAVED ON ACCOUNT OF THEY'RE DEPRAVED. National Review's Daniel Foster, you will be pleased to know, doesn't unreservedly endorse the decision of the Ayn Rand Hook & Ladder Company to let some poor guy's house burn to ground because the man hadn't paid them a fee. But his asshole buddies are asking what his fucking problem is -- as you might expect, Jonah Goldberg is the douchiest of the bunch, giggling dementedly because the loss of someone's home nicely sets up his zinger about compassionate conservatism (I guess Goldberg hasn't learned the difference between fires in real life and fires in cartoons); John Derbyshire is typically savage and Kevin D. Williamson thinks a scorched-cat picture is an appropriate response, perhaps believing that by not adding a LOLcat caption he is exhibiting admirable restraint. (Is failing a psychological test a requirement for employment at National Review?)

Foster seems to have been unnerved by the insight these attacks offer into the character of his workmates, and like a battered child attempts to restore equilibrium by lashing out against a common enemy, Paul Krugman:
I don’t have much more to add, except to note that Paul Krugman, in a brief blog post on the subject, makes a really bad analogy:
This is essentially the same as denying someone essential medical care because he doesn’t have insurance. So the question is, do you want to live in the kind of society in which this happens?
No. Krugman would have been correct if he’d said “This is essentially the same as an insurance company refusing to pay for someone’s essential medical care because that person never bought insurance in the first place.” And I don’t mind living in that kind of society at all.
Actually, since the guy's home burned down, the best analogy -- an exigent situation in response to which public servants refuse to respond because the piper hadn't been paid -- would be a guy bleeding to death in the emergency room of Fred Hayek Memorial Hospital. Which I assume they would also endorse, unless the guy were a fetus.

Do these creatures actually know any human beings?

UPDATE. Interesting, isn't it, that libertarian magazine Reason has yet to comment* on this? If I didn't know better I'd assume they were thinking, "Everyone knows we're assholes -- do we have to prove it to them?"

*UPDATE 2. "You spoke too soon," commenter atheist informs me; the Reasonoids are "already pointing out how this excellent example shows the clear superiority of the libertarian worldview, and mocking hopey-dopey statist Paul Krugman." Yeah. The thrust of the thing is that since a government agency did this, you can't pin this on the libertarians -- even though the agency was clearly operating on the libertarian principles that are allegedly sweeping the country. I'm surprised no one has suggested a fire department voucher system.

Nick Gillespie also asks the Patrick Bateman impersonators who inhabit Reason comments whether they would let the house burn down, and gets the expected results. My favorite so far: "I've never felt so viscerally that people are starting to talk about us [libertarians] like others talk about Jews." Hmm, the more successful they are, the more victim status they claim -- refresh my memory: How are they not conservatives, again?

(There's also supposed to be a Katherine Mangu-Ward video, but I can't see it in my browser; I assume God is trying to protect me.)

UPDATE 3. God abandoned me and allowed me to see that video:

HOST: "Do you think the firefighters did the right thing by just standing by?"

MANGU-WARD: "Y'know, it's actually an interesting story because it's all about the context…"

HOST: "So you have absolutely no mercy for these people?"

MANGU-WARD: "Y'know, I think that it's a question of free riders…"

Jesus Christ, they're just monsters, aren't they?

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