Menckens Ghost

More About: MEDIA (MainStreamMedia - aka MSM)

When everyone has a sacred cow, no one has any meat

By Mencken’s Ghost

August 4, 2011

To see what notions the statist destroyers of America are hatching to ensure that prosperity and individual liberty never rise from the dead, I listen to both leftist and rightist media.

Leftist television was all aglow recently about our munificent and benevolent president giving women free birth control, although it is free stuff that has bankrupted the nation. 

Naturally, rightist talk radio was aghast about this latest giveaway.  But a drive-time host on Arizona’s most popular rightist talk-radio station found time to also rant about local school districts charging a fee of around $100 for kids who participate in organized sports.  He didn’t see his intellectual contradiction, although it was just as obvious as Phoenix’s Camelback Mountain. 

When everyone has a sacred cow, no one has any meat to eat.  Or stated differently, when no one wants to cut his pet program, subsidy, entitlement, handout, or defense contract, the nation will never climb out of bankruptcy.

It probably takes an intellectual to recognize an intellectual contradiction, and the talk-show host, a former high school jock, is anything but an intellectual.  That’s a compliment, for as history shows, intellectuals have inflicted great harm on the world and nation.

 Karl Marx was an intellectual.  Woodrow Wilson was an intellectual.  The pampered leftists who run America’s universities are intellectuals.  Our president is an intellectual.  His advisors are intellectuals.  Ben Bernanke is an intellectual.  His predecessor Alan Greenspan is an intellectual.   Many of the heads of America’s financial industry are intellectuals and graduates of the Ivy League.

 It makes one wonder if “intellectual” is synonymous with “dumbass.”

It was intellectuals, after all, who thought that easy money was the foundation for a strong economy.  It was intellectuals who did away with the tradition of banks being owned by partners who would suffer personal losses if they took on too much risk and leverage.  It was intellectuals who thought that everyone should own a house, that house prices never went down, and that it was not financial lunacy to let numbskulls put five percent down on a house they couldn’t afford and then to take out a second mortgage to buy stuff they couldn’t afford.  It was intellectuals who encouraged Fannie Mae to be overleveraged and to slice bad mortgages into bad notes.  It was intellectuals who watched banks package the bad notes into tranches, put a pretty bow on them, and sell them to widows and European banks.  And it was intellectuals, including Ben Bernanke, who claimed that a 40% rise in home prices was not a bubble, even though there was no other explanation for the rise.

A friend of mine believes that intellectuals are not dumbasses--that they know exactly what they are doing.  He says they are oligarchs who know that the masses won’t rise against them and their stealing as long as the rabble has plenty of food, booze and sports.  His comments are troubling, because he is one of the few intellectuals I know who is not a dumbass. 

My father-in-law is not a dumbass, either, although he doesn’t have a college degree.  After a career working for a savings and loan in a rural town in Northwest Penn., he knew that the newfangled practice of giving mortgages to numbskulls and then selling the mortgages to people who never met the numbskulls was lunacy. 

Like many towns across the nation, my father-in-law’s hometown has been undergoing economic decay for decades.  It has lost much of its timber, oil and manufacturing industries, due in large part to greedy unions, high taxes, and selfish environmentalists.  It now survives largely on government money, not only from Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and welfare; but also from a federal prison and a campus of the University of Pittsburgh that the town fought to get, thinking that the institutions would change the town’s fortunes.  Well, the prison did attract the wonderful relatives of incarcerated criminals.

Three or four generations ago, unskilled and uneducated but smart immigrants from Italy and Sweden immigrated to the town and worked for low wages in factories, mills and oil fields.  Somehow they managed to keep their houses clean and neat, to keep their kids on the straight and narrow, and to save money.  Today, many of their descendants can be seen wandering the streets aimlessly, waddling from obesity, showing off grotesque tattoos, and sitting on filthy sofas on the porches of their dilapidated houses, smoking, drinking, and watching their broods grow up to be like them. 

Their forebears left their mother countries and families to improve their economic prospects, carrying all of their possessions in a valise.  Now, a few generations later, their progeny won’t move to places like N. Dakota that are booming and where unemployment is low.  Attached to the anchor of welfare, they won’t even move 50 miles to work in the part of Penn. that is booming from the mining of shale.  However, they will waddle to the Post Office to wait in line for their monthly SSI and welfare checks.     

Tellingly, a park in the town is named after the head of the local housing authority, as if she built public housing with her own money and was not given a nice salary, pension, and perks.  Even more telling, the local high school recently spent $1 million to redo its track and to carpet its football field with artificial turf.  As with many parts of the country, education spending in the area has skyrocketed while economic prospects have plummeted, along with industriousness, virtue, and academic achievement.  Yet our intellectual president says that more education spending will save the nation.

The rightist talk-radio host mentioned at the beginning of this commentary would probably think that spending $1 million on artificial turf for a football field in a dying town is money well-spent.  Like many others on the right, he’s not an intellectual but thinks like one. 


“Mencken’s Ghost” is the nom de plume of an Arizona writer who can be reached at


1 Comments in Response to

Comment by David Jackson
Entered on:

 Dear Mencken,

   Congrats! You are more correct than even you probably believe.

   Your "compalint" is just one of the many examples of why I continue to SUGGEST that we start making budget cuts by reducing the entire congressional deligation by half...There are billions to be had in the pork savings, alone, not to mention the wasted salaries for a corrupt and stupid gang of (s)elected criminals and traitors. It's probably impossible to conjure the grand total of money that would be saved on illegal travel expenses, wasted staf salaries, postage, phony campaign payouts and "matching" funds, and paid "vactions". The aftermath is a certain unknown: However, the hush money and payola that presidents, staffers, and ex-this or -that's receive after sneaking out of DC, in the form of book deals, chairmanships, company management and director positions, university professorships, and the most ludicrous and totally wasted "speaker" fees - all of which utimately cost taxpayers a great deal of money - are in the realm of the supernatural.

   There are worthwhile "cows", but most are relatively inexpensive and actually serve some social or economic purpose; they also offer little opportunity for payoffs or payouts, during or after a term or two in office.

    There would be absolutely no contrived "budget crises", if our (s)elected politicos simply quit giving away the wealth of the nation to our foreign enemies, pious private companies and contractors, the 'federal" reserve bank(s), and all their other "friends". (How many of the sane amongst us would give away financial control of their "income" and cummulative produced goods and services; unfettered access and use of every aspect of their personal, home, and business wealth; the keys, formulas, codes, and the methodology of private, commercial, military (security) protocols and properties; and the lives of our children to protect and advance our enemy's ability to destroy us; all the while letting our own families and friends suffer and, literally, starve to death?)

   The people of the United States have been sacrificing for way to long, especially for the greater good of the second-rate, low-life elitists and criminals who make up the bulk of that most fetid and diseased of "cows": The gang of thugs who have taken over the American (U.S) government! Let them pay off "their" debt. And, let them fight "their" make-work wars. Instead of paying with U.S. blood and booty for a bunch of religious zealots to kill everyone who doesn't cowtow to their perverse view of life on earth in air conditioned comfort, let's re-build our OWN infrastructure, start educating our kids, feed our starving populations, provide some real jobs in Detroit, quit trying to force and charge kids to ride to school on buses that should never have "existed" in the first place, provide actual food in free school lunches, make driver's education and effective physical education mandatory, make reasonable healthcare available, and get off the backs of the people to whom this country belongs!

   There is nothing wrong with helping those amongst us who actually need it: It's a worthwhile, functional, and lofty concept. It's who we pretend we are and really ought to be as a society. What has been and is being done is as contemptible and depraved as the "people" who have been and ARE responsible.

    As right as you are, Mr. Mencken, I doubt anything is likely to change for the better. The complicity of those who "work" in government, education, and media, not to mention mom and dad or grandma and grandpa, in support of THEIR sacred cow - the freak show that they vote for every two to six years (Washington) has become second-nature and pretty much achieved its goal of psycho/social [economic] subjugation of the mass of the population of the U.S. We have, indeed, lived to see the take-over of the United States by the long-forgotten ENEMY WITHIN!

    Someone once told me that a cynic was someone who is always right but seldom get any pleasure from it. I don't consider myself a cynic. But, I'm certainly not enjoying any of this.




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