Michael Eriksson
A Swede in Germany
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Politics: Category Contents

In this category, I will in due time go into depth on a number of political issues. Below, I will briefly mention some of these issues (and/or related issues that might end up in a different category). Many existing, but less systematic and unrevised, texts can be found on my old Wordpress blog, while the older category on Feminism provides some overlap. (Indeed, much of what I wish to say is already covered on the Wordpress blog, should someone be inclined to dig sufficiently deep.)

You are very welcome to read this page—that is why it is here. However, I encourage some care with interpretation due to a, currently necessary, lack of context and argumentation. Such context and argumentation will follow when the separate pages are written. Chances are that the list also contains more imprecise or faulty formulations, and similar, than the eventual pages will.

I strongly discourage linking to and quoting from the below list. This, in part, for the above reasons; in part, because the individual items are likely to be removed once the respective separate page is published. Likewise, it is very possible that new items will be added or current items re-ordered. (Except for the division into four thematic groups, the original ordering reflects the order in which the items were added, not theme, priority, importance, whatnot.)

As a particular caveat, there might be some instances of “Left” and its variations that might be better seen as e.g. “many politicians, especially on the Left”, rather than just “Left”. (Generally, however, political problems are to a very large degree problems of and with the Left.) Likewise, while the Left (cf. below) is far more homogeneous than the “Right”, it does contain considerable variations, including such complications as that many Leftist voters might vote for/support a given party or candidate based on misleading claims about e.g. “we want A; our opponents B”, where the truth is closer to the opposite. Consider e.g. the anti-equality take of Feminism vs. the pro-equality take of many who support Feminism out of sheer ignorance of what Feminism is. For reasons of practicality, I will usually gloss over such issues; however, I encourage the reader to keep them in mind, e.g. in that the claim “the Left is X” could imply that “typical Leftist politicians are X”, “most Leftists are X”, or similar.

  1. (Concerning the Left–Right scale and associated classifications and groupings)

    1. The Left–Right scale is useless, as the “Right” is far too heterogeneous to make a reasonable grouping. This, especially, if we fall into the Leftist rhetorical trap of deeming someone/-thing as “far Right” based on opinions, e.g. real or alleged racism, that are independent of any reasonable Left–Right division. (The Left, in contrast, is more homogeneous, and has in large parts become so dominated by various branches and descendants of Marxism, that the use of terms like “Left”, “Leftwing”, “far Left” have some justification, even if they are far from ideal. Notably, the far/extreme Left is a more extreme version of the “regular” Left, while the alleged far/extreme Right is not an extreme version of mainstream ideologies typically considered Rightwing, e.g. Conservatism.)

    2. Moreover, the classifications used have varied so much from country to country, time to time, and propaganda machine to propaganda machine that any use without considerable additional context (resp. context shared by reader and writer) can be highly misleading.

    3. Moreover, such a one-dimensional grouping is inherently misleading, and it is better to look at multiple dimensions, e.g. attitudes towards the individual vs. the collective, civic rights vs. governmental control, small government vs. big government, free markets vs. a planned economy, etc.

    4. The Nazis (and, likely, Fascists) were a far Left movement and are better viewed as a non-Marxist Socialism than as anything Rightwing. (Note, e.g., that the current U.S. Democrats score closer to the Nazis on all the dimensions in the previous item than does the Republicans.)

    5. The idea of a political “Center” is somewhat pointless or outright misleading, as it, today, contains too many groups that, on that misguided Left–Right scale, have historically self-identified as Rightwing, but now seem to eschew that label in order to not be grouped with the alleged far Right.

    6. What someone does or does not do, is often more important than what he believes: Fascist is as Fascist does.

    7. The scale is often abused by the Left to paint the world as strictly partitioned into good Lefties/Socialists/whatnot and evil racists/bigots/whatnot, with an implied “And you don’t want to be an evil racist, do you?”. This not only misses all the heterogeneity of the non-Left, but turns the world on its head, as racism has nothing to do with the matter (and is quite common on the Left), bigotry seems to be outright more common on the Left, and as evil is definitely more a characteristic of the Left (e.g. through an opposition to basic human rights, also cf. below).

  2. (Concerning the Left)

    1. While I do not see the Left as the root of all evil, it can be argued as the most destructive and influential manifestation of that root—the stupidity and irrationality of humans.

      Note that the extreme hostility of most Leftist groupings towards religion is very understandable in this light: Religions and the Left fight for the same groups of naive believers; and, by eliminating religions, the Left can reduce the competition. Similarly, many of the “harder” Leftists that I have met in real life or encountered on the Internet have shown a very similar type of thinking to that presumable among 1932 National Socialists (alleged as “Right” by the current Left), and it is hardly a coincidence that there was extreme hostility between Communists, Social Democrats, and National Socialist in a three-way conflict. Many of the ardent Nazi haters of today would have been ardent supporters in 1932, as the same type of weak mind is involved in both cases. (Also note the common decrying of the “wrong” type of Leftist as “Fascist”, e.g. Trotsky by Stalin or Social Democrats by Communists.)


      A side-issue is that is very important not to ascribe too much of the bad that happens in the world to the Left, and we should certainly not jump to the conclusion (let alone dishonestly raise the accusation) that any given evil stems from the Left without actual indications. Doing so would repeat one of the most common sins of the Left in the other direction. (Note e.g. how the old Left has often tried to blame anything and everything on Capitalists, Feminists on men, Nazis on Jews, portions of the current U.S. Left on Whites and/or “White supremacy”, etc. This even when the alleged connection goes beyond the far-fetched.)

    2. A related issue is a common human contempt for the rights and interests of other humans (TODO include Wordpress discussions), which has found ample room in Leftist ideologies and the Left’s longstanding tradition of opposition to freedom, rights of this-and-that, going back not just to Marx, nor even Hegel, but Rousseau. (While still being very present in the modern Left. Note that while the Left has a long history of lip-service to e.g. freedom and rights of this-and-that, it usually ends with lip-service, is limited to “rights for me; not for thee”, provides faux rights like the-right-to-say-whatever-you-want-as-long-as-it-is-adheres-to-the-orthodoxy, or is otherwise no true rights.)

    3. A potential sub-issue is the type of corruption that is implied by “Animal Farm”, in that all political systems, ideologies, types of governance, etc. tend to bring a certain type of person to the top. Firstly, care must be taken when comparing A and B in determining what is a result of A respectively B, per se, and what of “Animal Farm” corruption of A respectively B. Here there is reason to suspect that much of the rhetorical success of the Left when out of power results from the issue being more noticeable with groups in power, resp., even when in non-dictatorial power, from decrying as “evil Capitalism” evil that just happens to be this type of person having risen among Capitalists—without considering that the same type of person would have been a high party functionary (or some such) in a Communist dictatorship. Secondly, chances are that the extreme disregard for the rights of the individual, the extreme belief in authority, etc., that is so common on the Left makes the Left more vulnerable to such issues. (And note the asymmetry in attribution, where the USSR is alleged as “not true Communism—and next time it will be so much better”, while the characters equivalent of e.g. Lenin, Stalin, Beria in the business world are derided as proof of how evil Capitalism would be... A similar approach is used by Marxist Socialists/Communists against National Socialists. Note of how the spectre of Nazi-Germany is invoked at the slightest hint of Neo-Nazism, while the USSR/China/Cambodia/Cuba/DDR/... are dismissed as weird aberrations that will not be repeated if Communism is given an umpteenth chance.)

    4. Contrary to own claims, the Left, in virtually any incarnation, is thoroughly anti-scientific, ranging from the pseudo-science of Marxism, to Lysenkoism, to Post-Modernism (at least, in its popular application), to Gender-Studies, to denial of any scientific results that do not fit the Leftist agenda, etc.

      (TODO consider comparison between the methods of Lysenkoism and parts of e.g. the modern Social Sciences.)

    5. Overlapping, much of what naive Leftists take to be true (and what is a strongly contributing reason to the fact that they are Leftists to begin with) is contrary to science and based in many decades of systematic and distorting Leftist propaganda, e.g. regarding IQ, nature vs. nurture, non-Keynesian vs. Keynesian economics (at least, in the naive versions encountered in public discourse), the (largely alleged) dangers of nuclear power, ...

      (Here, there might also be an aspect of wishful thinking, in that humans are prone to believe not what is true, what is shown by observations and logical arguments, etc., but what they want to hear. A more general/non-political article on this is in my backlog, but note e.g. how Keynesian economics give the Left and/or big government a license to interfere where pre-Keynesian economics often spoke against interference or how a “nurture only” perspective fits so well with so many Leftist agendas and methods.)

    6. What the Left claims is often the exact opposite of the truth, including on issues like IQ (etc.) above, including that accusations raised by the Left are usually unfounded, and including that these accusations often apply very strongly to the Left, it self. (Note e.g. much of the hate propaganda in the Biden-era U.S., where the likes of Biden have the spreading of discord as one of their main strategies, while they (a) accuse e.g. Trump of exactly that and (b) proclaim themselves uniters, the absurd claim that the Democrats would the “party of science”, or the Democrats increasing use of Nazi-style methods combined with a somewhat Nazi-like ideology, while they accuse Trump et al. of being ... Nazis.)

    7. A common issue with the Left is “inoculations”, that some claim, often in a distorted or weakened version, is presented to the uninformed as faulty, naive, or (for some reason or other) evil, so that they will reject it out of hand when it is presented by its proponents—regardless of its actual value, correctness, whatnot. These “inoculations” are often accompanied by faulty claims and weak arguments, e.g. that this-or-that would be debunked—while such a debunking has never taken place. (I have repeatedly seen a Feminist version of this, namely to claim that “we have debunked [something] so often that we will not bother to do it again for your benefit [nor will we bother to link to one of these alleged debunkings]”—while, again, no single such debunking appears to actually have taken place.) A blanket attribution to e.g. “racism” or “White Supremacy” is, in the U.S., extremely common as a means not just to inoculate but to cause those wishing to be “brav” to avoid certain works/authors/whatnot (e.g. “The Bell-Curve”) or, even, areas of discourse (e.g. immigration) entirely—leaving us with the virtual equivalent of a child who sticks his fingers in his ears and goes “la-la-la-la[...]” at the top of his voice. (TODO add text from Wordpress on “brav”.)

      Looking at Economics, e.g., someone on the Left might condemn a belief in market forces as “market voodoo”, disregarding the enormous empirical evidence in favor of market forces and the poor record of (by implication, “non-voodoo”) government-run economies. Similarly, I have often seen formulations like “that tired old cake [pie, whatnot] analogy”. However, various “cake analogies” come from their great illustrative value and how they can, e,g., show the flaws in the Leftist priorities. The Left has no good counter and tries to prevent the broad masses from gaining a particular insight by dishonestly “inoculating” against the analogies.

      A version that I find extremely annoying, but fortunately have seen only rarely, is to condemn the insight that (Soviet, at least) Communism and Nazism are two sides of the same coin as faulty, naive, and/or as a sign of fundamentally flawed political view. On the contrary, the realisation that they are two sides of the same coin is a sign of political sophistication that often requires going against years or decades of implicit indoctrination in school and through media. (Having or not having this realisation can serve as a strong Litmus test. The realisation that the Nazis were Leftwing by criteria that truly matter is another. TODO add other such Litmus tests.)

      Another extremely frustrating inoculation tactic, used particularly often by Feminists, is to take the facts of the matter and to label them as “prejudice”, “myth”, or similar. Ditto with matters yet to be determined, and where the possibilities unfavorable to Feminism are similarly dismissed in advance of the determination. Ditto with matters of individual variation, e.g. that some women want X and others Y, where the individual variation that does not fit the Feminist agenda is, again, condemned as prejudice/myth/whatnot. (Related, there is often a building of straw-men or an extremification in that a rare opinion can be referred to as a “common [!] prejudice”.) The most nefarious example might be the “myth” that women could lie about e.g. rape, with goes contrary to Feminist claims about evil men and the need to unconditionally believe accusations by women. In reality, such lies are quite common (TODO import discussion from Wordpress) and it is the Feminist “a woman would never, ever lie about X” that is the myth—or outright propaganda lie. Another example is the “myth” about the “happy whore”, as, apparently, any and all sex work is something that men have forced upon women against their will. The simple fact is that some prostitutes have taken the job as a last resort, while others have chosen it willingly and prefer it to a regular job, while others are somewhere in between—just like those who work in an office. (True forced sex work, e.g. involving kidnappings of young women, is far rarer in real life than in the imaginations of Feminists. In a bigger, picture, we have to consider aspects like the “BATNA” to being a prostitute, which might involve begging or cleaning toilets for a living.)

    8. A particular annoyance with the Left, Feminists in particular, is the attitude that “we are the enlightened few; those who disagree need to be educated by us, because they lack basic insights”—while the opposite usually applies: The Leftist/Feminist viewpoint is pushed in schools/media/whatnot and many or most of us who oppose them have originally been believers in at least part of the Leftist/Feminist worldview. Over time, after putting previous beliefs under scrutiny, after studying independent sources, after thinking this-and-that through, we have broken free from this indoctrination, while the self-appointed “enlightened few” still adhere to an at best simplistic, at worst outright faulty worldview.

      A potentially important aspect of this is the constant Leftist harping about “radicalization”, that the people should be protected from this-or-that influence, whatnot, which often amounts to exactly preventing them from reading dissenting sources of information—even when these sources have the facts, the arguments, the whatnot on their side, and even when they, by any reasonable standard, are less radical than the Left.

    9. The problem of a Leftist media hegemony, “fact” checkers that check conformance with Leftist opinions instead of scientific facts, etc.

    10. Leftist attempts to “eliminate the competition”, including religions that attract similar crowds of week thinkers as the left, real science and solid education that compete with the Left as “filler of minds”, and specific topics, like history, that might reveal the weaknesses of Leftist ideas, arguments, politics, whatnot.

      Also note the great similarity of method between some Leftist groups and religious sects, ranging from mind control to attempts at Taliban-style destruction of non-Leftist culture, statues, whatnot.

      (Potential for a text on the Left and various attempts at aversion training, conditioned responses, whatnot? For example, if the victims are taught from an early age that voicing the “wrong” opinion leads to condemnation or other punishment, what will the effects be?)

    11. There is an enormous difference between saying e.g. that “I believe [wish for, whatnot] X and will, therefore, dedicate my own time, money, and/or energy to accomplish X.” and “I believe [wish for, whatnot] X and will, therefore, force all others to dedicate their time, money, and/or energy to accomplish X.”. The latter is a recurring and fatal flaw with Leftists, even when they should happen to have an X that might, in and by it self, have been laudable.

      A related fatal flaw of, among others, Leftist ideologies is the presumption to dictate right and wrong, what to do and not to do, how to do something, whatnot to others: We are all wrong occasionally, but that is OK as long as we make decision for ourselves. When we make decisions for others, and enforce these decisions with governmental power, the situation is very different. This both from an ethical point of view and in terms of the damage that can be, and often is, caused. The only sane approach is to limit interventions to areas where it is truly necessary/beneficial and/or to only give recommendations in other areas—but the Left usually does it the other way around. (That the Left is wrong more often than it is right, often through having basic facts wrong, not understanding human nature, or not considering side-effects and elementary game theory, does not make things better, but is secondary WRT this item.)

    12. Leftists often seem to take a view that what is not forbidden is automatically beneficial and should be indulged in to a high degree (especially, when it was previously forbidden). This is, on the very outside, a tolerable idea in an extremely repressive regime (which might give an additional hint about Leftist mentality). A Libertarian, in contrast, understands that what is allowed is not necessarily good, but believes that the individual should have the right to make his own decisions, even should they be faulty or harmful (only) to himself. Certainly, no regime, especially a repressive one, will have the knowledge and wisdom to make perfect rules; certainly, no set of rules based on one-size-fits-all-thinking can ever be more than a poor approximation of ideal rules.

      (More generally, there might be a tendency to take extreme positions, fall into the salt-in-the-soup fallacy, and/or to raise a non-virtue to virtue. Consider e.g. the laudable idea that function is more important than form and that this-and-that should be designed to work well first, and only to look good as a secondary concern, and contrast it with some Left-associated design schools and the exaggerated mis-conclusion that “uglier is better” or that “ugliness is a virtue” in design.)

    13. The danger of Leftist distortions of history, reduction in proper teaching of history, blocking of non-Leftist sources of information, and general “memory-holing” is well illustrated by the film “Memento” and the character “Leonard”. Note the similarities (in character, not letters) between the average millennial or post-millennial Leftist drone and Leonard. The film shows how dangerous such manipulation can be, how important it is to not trust single sources, how important it is to gather and weigh information rationally and in context, etc.—all things that the current Left is trying to prevent us from doing.

    14. Many Leftist ideas and/or ideas (rightly or wrongly) associated with the Left are not necessarily bad, but naive, misimplemented, taken too far, impossible to reach, or similar. This, while others might be presented as positive in a misleading manner through leaving out crucial information.

      (For the purposes of the below, “communism” is the general idea, “Communism” a more specifically Leftist/Marxist/whatnot version.)

      Consider, for an example of both, the idea of communism in the sense of, e.g., “we all live together in peace and harmony, with no government”. Now, living together in peace and harmony seems like a great thing, while my negative feelings about current governments, and “big government” in general, are no secret. On closer inspection, however, the roses have thorns.

      Among the problems (which occur will to some part depend on the details of the communism at hand):

      Human nature will get in the way of the “peace and harmony”. Generally, virtually all such schemes are horrifyingly naive on human nature and the complications caused by it. (Possibly, a partial reason for the stubborn Leftist belief in the long-debunked “tabula rasa” model of human development—it allows wishful thinking like “If we can just indoctrinate the children hard enough from a sufficiently early age, they will all grow up to fit in as cogs in the Communist [or whatnot] machine!”)

      Some type of government will almost certainly arise automatically. If nothing else, we will sooner or later, likely sooner, have a situation of e.g. “We, the majority, have decided that X. Accept it or leave the community!” or “I, the strongest, [...] or get a beating!”. (A Night-watchman government would be the ideal compromise, but seems to be something never tried, while ever-growing and self-serving governments are the norm. An interesting paradox is that the road to Communism alleged by e.g. the USSR involved a truly massive increase in government and suppression of the individual—something which should have rung the warning bells through being antithetical to the claimed goal.)

      Various versions of communism usually involve a sharing of property, an abolishment of property, or similar. At least in “hippie” versions, even a sharing of sexual/romantic partners has often been intended. This tends to work poorly, will lead to more injustices than it abolishes, and is incompatible with human nature. Indeed, one of the most important things that separate good adult humans from animals, children, and bad humans is a respect for the property of others (even absent a risk of violence or punishment following an infringement)—in this regard, communism turns humans into animals or children. Moreover it will fail on human nature, as we then have issues like “the tragedy of the commons”, lack of incentives to work, lack of responsibility, etc.

      A critical issue is survival. Someone has to bring in food, build houses, and whatever might apply. Who and with what motivation? Certainly, anything resembling modern society would be impossible in a communist setting, as there is too much work, too much coordination, too much use of talent, whatnot, for such communism to work. Even planned economies of the USSR style had great trouble, despite recognizing e.g. the need for coordination. In contrast, free markets and the mutual adaption and coordination between various individuals and entities has a proven record. However, even e.g. a hunter–gatherer society (no computers, no serious healthcare, no security of food supply, whatnot) will have problems. For instance, to kill and transport large animals with primitive technology is much easier for a hunting party than a single hunter, but who decides who is allowed to be in the party, when the hunt starts, how the party is to act, who is allowed a share of the kill, whatnot? If a strong fisher can fend for himself and his family working half-time, will he be allowed to do so, or will his catches be shared between all, while he is either forced to work full-time or sees no point in working, as he has no return from it? If someone performs the hard work to make a plot of ground arable in order to plant something, will the resulting crop be his or shared, and will he have the right to use the same plot next year, or will someone else take over “because social justice”? Etc.

      (A sad twist is that (a) the Left often portrays it self as strongly pro-freedom, e.g. freedom of speech, freedom from external authority and arbitrary rules, (b) many naive low-level Leftist are Leftist because of these claims, (c) the Left de facto is very strongly anti-freedom. Thus, there were hippies in the U.S. crying for freedom and communism, while the peoples of the USSR, DDR, Cuba, China, ..., would have considered the U.S. conditions an astronomical improvement. Ditto factors like civic rights, enlightenment, tolerance, etc., where the Left bangs its own drum, is believed by the stupid or uninformed, and the Left is actually anti-rights, anti-enlightenment, anti-tolerance, ..., and/or sees them as one-sided things, e.g. in that “we have rights; evil capitalists, Whites, Republicans, whatnot, do not”. Here, it is particularly important to look not just at claims, but to consider the actual actions of various groups.)

    15. The mentality difference between Leftists (especially, New Leftists) and many non-Leftists (especially, Libertarians) is well illustrated by typical takes on freedom of speech and opinion:

      A Libertarian might say that “No matter how strongly I disagree with you, I do not deny you your right to speech, let alone opinion.”.


      The famous quote ascribed to Voltaire took it a good deal further. While in many ways noble, such a firm stance is not necessarily representative of proponents of free speech. It does, however, express the same underlying idea.

      An interesting question is how these various attitudes play in with the fact that freedom of speech is continually eroded, while the Left paradoxically wins in public perception, despite the extreme problems with Leftist ideas, economic policies, etc. A cause of the erosion is quite likely that the non-Left, Libertarians included, take an insufficiently strong stance for freedom of speech—too many who insist on it, are not, when push comes to shove, willing to fight for it. The paradoxical Leftist victory, in turn, is strongly related to the fact that the non-Left allows the Left free speech, but the Left, when it can, denies the non-Left the same right.

      A Leftist will often deviate from this proper understanding of freedom of speech and opinion in one or both of two regards, by implicitly dividing many opinions into two categories:

      Firstly, those that are, in some sense, privileged or endorsed, because they match the current Leftist orthodoxy, are held by someone of a special status (notably, someone highly “intersectional” and “minority”), are held by a different (but non-White/-Western) culture, or similar. These are often elevated beyond tolerance of differing opinions and raised to a state of hyper-relativism, where all opinions are equally good and true (even should they be provably faulty) and where even questioning these opinions might move someone to the second category.

      Secondly, those that are in disagreement with Leftist orthodoxy and not otherwise privileged. These opinions are often seen as outright exempt from freedom of speech and, even, opinion. Whoever holds them is to shut up and let the self-proclaimed adults (who, usually, are deeply childish, deeply stupid, and deeply ignorant) talk. Canceling, shunning, firing, whatnot such holders is seen as outright virtuous.

      And, yes, the same opinion might be in the first or the second category depending on who holds it (and depending on who is the subject of the opinion). However, different Leftist groups often disagree about who is or is not privileged relative someone else. Note the recent conflicts between trans-activists and Feminists, who both insist on their own greater privilege and increasingly condemn each other for e.g. “transphobia” resp. “wanting to abolish women”.

      (The “dividing many opinions” arises from the clear majority of opinions that are of too little relevance to topics like politics or are otherwise not sufficiently “heated”. Whether roses or tulips are more beautiful, e.g., is not relevant to this type of categorisation.)

  3. (Concerning government and similar)

    1. The state must never be seen as more than a means to an end; the citizen must always be seen as an end in himself.

    2. The state only has legitimisation if it serves the people; most modern states do not.

    3. There is an enormous amount of empirical evidence against Big Government and government interference on current levels.

    4. Governments tend to interfere where they should not and fail to interfere where they should.

      As a comparison, the “Night-watchman State” focuses on the core responsibilities of the state, and deliberately minimizes interference outside of this area. Today, an opposite take (be it deliberately or through historical developments) dominates: these core areas are taken lightly or, even, ignored, while massive interference takes place where the Night-watchman State would deliberately refrain from interference, because such interference is pointless or harmful.

    5. A social contract, be it a literal or metaphorical one, should have as its main purpose to define the rights of the citizens and the duties of the state. The type of “social contract” proposed by the likes of Rousseau is nothing but a complete and pointless surrender of all rights and, as such, an “anti-social contract”.

      (What Bertrand Russell (?) described as roughly “the right to obey the law” as the extent of citizens’ rights.)

    6. Civic rights and Rechtstaatlichkeit are far more important than democracy. In fact, the main justification of democracy is as a means to ensure the presence and continuance of the former. A democracy that fails here is worthless.

      Anyone who insists on democracy as a single most important thing without enough care for these factors, or, worse, is willing to sacrifice these on the altar of democracy, is either an idiot or a criminal shit.

      (TODO There might be scope for a text on a superstitious belief in democracy, possibly similar to Rousseau’s “general will(?)” or some variation of the “Mandate of Heaven”.)

    7. Similarly, a democracy must contain safe-guards against the “tyranny of the masses”, a wolves-and-a-sheep-voting-about-what-is-for-dinner situation, and the extremely poor decision making that so often follows in naive democracies.

    8. There is a dire need for evidence-based politics, as demonstrated by the anti-scientific COVID mishandling, but also e.g. the common anti-scientific mishandling of nuclear power, the ideologically driven and often ignorant handling of the economy, etc.

    9. A common attitude is that those who wield governmental power should be exempt from responsibility, barring cases of gross abuse; it should be the other way around: anyone wielding such power must be held to a higher or much higher standard than, say, a private person in his private dealings.

      An interesting sub-problem is who-should-be-responsible-for-what in case of orders given and orders followed, including internal regulations and whatnots. While I have not finalized my thoughts here, I tend towards the idea that any executor of an order should be obliged to take reasonable precautions to ensure that the order is legally valid, compatible with constitutional principles, and similar. (What “reasonable” amounts to, however, is a complicated question.) Barring such precautions, there should be a duty to refuse the order; if the order is still followed, the receiver of the order and the giver of the order should be held equally responsible. (In contrast, if sufficient precautions were taken to allow an “acted in good faith” excuse, then only the giver of the order is responsible.)

      In particular, the dual German attitude must be exterminated that (a) civil servants should blindly obey their superiors with no regard for law, ethics, and other concerns, (b) the overall civil service can make whatever decisions it wants until lawsuits are decided against it. (The latter with the complication that a loss in one lawsuit vs. one citizen does not necessarily lead to a change in behavior towards the other citizens, etc.)

    10. Governments are too often interested in appearing to fix a problem, or even appearing to “do something”, regardless of actual results.

      A cartoon (GoComics/GlasbergenCartoons, 2015-04-05) gives a beautiful analogy: A physician shows an X-ray to a patient, while saying “Your X-ray showed a broken rib, but we fixed it with Photoshop.”.

      Sadly, many politicians, bureaucrats, and the like might be unable to see how well this matches their own “fixes”—or fail to understand why this is not a true fix of anything.

  4. (General issues)

    1. The likes of Trump and the German AfD are so unpopular with the establishment because there are two categories of enemies—the Left and the portions of the non-Left that favor Big Government, own power, whatnot over what they nominally should support (note e.g. RINOs in the U.S. and the Merkelian portions of the CDU in Germany). We then have, in the U.S. and with Trump, half the Republican party in opposition, because he threatens the power of the establishment and the Republicans who live well off and in the establishment, half the Democrats in opposition because he threatens the Leftist ideals and agendas, and half the Democrats in mindlessly hateful opposition because he threatens both the Leftist ideals/agendas and the Democrats who live well off and in the establishment.

    2. There are many cases where the intelligent and knowledgeable individual can tell approximately what should be done or, failing that, what should not be done. Governments very often do the opposite.

    3. A functioning political system of a non-dictatorial type requires a sufficient degree of free speech, debate, a scientific mindset, etc. (And I do not rule out that the dictatorial could benefit, even from the point of view of the dictator, let alone the rest of the country at hand.)

    4. Politicians often ruin something and then blame someone else (e.g. hinder market forces, see things go wrong—and blame market forces).

    5. Today’s politicians spend to much time on activities like campaigning instead of governing, educating themselves, and other relevant activities.

    6. The situation in Germany (and much of the rest of the world) is fundamentally flawed, with everything turned on its head.

    7. The great incompetence of politicians, demonstrated again and again, and their lack of respect for the individual and Rechtsstaatlichkeit, demonstrated again and again, shows their unsuitability for the tasks at hand, and how important it is to (a) find a better breed of politician/decision-maker, (b) reduce the influence that politicians (the state, the government, whatnot) can have on society. (Note e.g. the COVID-countermeasure era, where medically unfounded speculation led to enormous interventions and violations of rights, the economy was trashed, and nothing was gained. If anything, the net effect even on health was negative. Moreover much of the negative effects were not only predictable but actually predicted—but the politicians failed to listen to the Cassandras.)

      Similar statements apply around e.g. politicians and lobbyists.

    8. The current “information” level in society is so disturbed by misinformation by dishonest politicians, incompetent journalists, and/or the Left that it is very hard to know what truly is the truth. In particular, there are great signs that panic-mongering (be it for true or made up problems) is used to distract attention from the problems that truly need to be addressed.

    9. A past error of mine has been to assume that almost everyone shares certain basic values, even when differing wildly in detail. Subsequent studies of the history of thought show that I have been overly optimistic, and that very many have values that are utterly incompatible with mine and more in line with e.g. “1984”. (An example of such a basic value is “freedom is good”, where I had simply assumed that some feel that freedom sometimes must be sacrificed for some Cause or Greater Good. In reality, many appear to see freedom as a neutral or negative. Similarly, I have believed that many have simply seen e.g. “Big Government” as a means to an end—but where many might actually see it as an end in it self. A semi-example might be focus on the absurdity of “equality of outcome”, which is utterly incompatible with equality in any true sense; however, this I had spotted far earlier.)

      TODO possible explanation for the absurd take on disenfranchisement discussed in and old Wordpress text. (Alternatively, weird “superstition”.)

    10. It is wrong to use laws to enforce a particular moral/ethical take on others, outside the necessary minimum. (Overlapping with the idea of a night-watchman state.) The individual must never be denied his right to make individual decisions about what he considers right and wrong—only legal and illegal.

      Worse, to have laws explicitly encode moral judgments, as with Germany’s absurd “Eigentum verpflichtet” is utterly inexcusable, except to the degree that they serve to limit misbehaviors of government, civil servants, law-makers, etc.

      Something similar applies to the use of governmental resources to propagate certain opinions as the one and only truth, which often amounts to abusing taxpayer’s money to indoctrinate the taxpayer...

    11. Potentially, the use (by politicians in general and Leftists in particular) of high taxes and inflation as a means to increase the probability that high earners keep earning instead of retiring, which helps to finance the government and its various programs. Ditto e.g. Keynes anti-savings, pro-spending take, which might have made it a civic duty to spend as much of income as possible.

TODO need for informed consent, etc.

TODO The difference between a citizen voluntarily doing something and being forced by the government to do so—even when he would have anyway. Note e.g. horrifying reasoning around Sweden and lockdowns.