Anarchy From Above
Chesterton — G.K. Chesterton — once wrote of “anarchy from above.”
Anarchy. The word implies a mob amok. Anarchy implies violence. And chaos.
Anarchy implies the murder of law, of order… both borne away by the whirlwind.
American cities have been scenes of anarchy.
How else would a fellow explain Minneapolis police taking to their heels — and abandoning their base to the fiery mob — who proceeded to set it ablaze?
How else would he explain Seattle’s Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone (presently defunct)… or “antifa’s” siege of Portland, Oregon (ongoing).
It is anarchy from below. Yet as Chesterton noted:
“It isn’t necessary that anarchy should be violent; nor is it necessary that it should come from below.”
“A Government May Grow Anarchic as Much as a People”
Thus he concludes, gravely, sternly, presciently:
“A government may grow anarchic as much as a people.”
That is, it may impose anarchy from above…
Governments have shuttered America’s restaurants, ale houses, barber shops, nail salons, gymnasiums, arenas, beaches… and all places of public resort.
Governments have ordered churches to scatter their flocks — and bolt their doors.
And has the Grim Reaper called on a loved one recently?
Then you may have been unable to pay your last respects. That is because governments restricted graveside sendoffs to a handful of bereaved.
These are the grim but necessary costs of containing a pandemic, we have been told.
Yet the same governments that barred you from your sister’s funeral, that locked you out of Sunday service… have blessed the mightiest mass gatherings we have ever encountered.
We refer of course to the George Floyd protests.
15-26 million Americans swarmed the streets… each one a potential plague-spreader… in over 2,000 cities… in all 50 states of this union… plus the District of Columbia.
Authorities not only permitted these disease incubators to infest the streets — they waved them in.
That is, certain Americans can swarm in their thousands, in their tens of thousands, in their hundreds of thousands, in their millions… yet others cannot gather in their dozens to worship almighty God or plant a relative.
Reduce it to its essence. And this is what you must conclude:
The rules are arbitrary. The rules are capricious. The rules war against logic itself.
The rules likewise war against justice itself…
The umbrella of law must cover all alike. Else it is not law. It is anti-law, a travesty of law, a bonfire of law.
It is anarchy from above…
Heather MacDonald of the Manhattan Institute:
The lockdown mandates employed mind-numbingly arbitrary distinctions. Wine stores and pot dispensaries were deemed “essential” and thus allowed to stay open; medical offices were required to close. Large grocery stores got the green light; small retail establishments with only a few customers each day were out of luck. Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer notoriously used her red pen within megastores to bar the sale of seeds, gardening supplies, and paint.
Next we come to the “excesses” of the protests:
Government officials, having shut down commerce due to unblemished ignorance of how markets work, now enabled the torching and looting of thousands of businesses due to the shirking of their most profound responsibility: protecting civil peace.
Blue state governors and mayors ordered law enforcement to stand down or use at most (in New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s words) a “light touch” with the rioters…
Most remarkably, public officials overtly admitted to choosing the forms of assembly that would be allowed based on the content of the protesters’ speech. Mayor de Blasio explained that protests over “400 years of American racism” are not the same as a “store owner or the devout religious person who wants to go back to services.” While the store owner or worshipper may be “understandably aggrieved,” he conceded, their grievances must still be suppressed in the name of coronavirus safety. Not the grievances of the protesters and rioters, however.
New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy congratulated the Black Lives Matter activists and distinguished them from mere “nail salon” entrepreneurs protesting their ongoing business stasis. The two are in “different orbits,” Murphy said.
“A Nightmare Marriage of Anarchy From Above… With Anarchy From Below”
The activist and the nail salon entrepreneur may inhabit “different orbits.”
Yet the virus circles in both. And in vastly greater quantities — we must assume — in the protesters’ circle.
Why then is the activist exempt from the rules that bind and chafe the nail salon entrepreneur?
The result is a nightmare marriage of anarchy from above… with anarchy from below.
They engineered the destruction of trillions of dollars of wealth, through thoroughly arbitrary decision making. And then they stood by as billions more dollars of work burned down. Public order and safety, equal treatment under the law, stability of expectations… have been decimated.
Not Just the Blue State Politicians
Ms. MacDonald butchers and scourges blue state politicos.
And our applause is like thunder.
Yet The Daily Reckoning’s political stance is aggressively, ruthlessly, militantly neutral…
We level our darts at liberals, at conservatives, at progressives, at moderates.
That is because they all invade our peace and dignity in one form or other — as well as our wallet.
And we remind you that red state officials have also imposed arbitrary economic lockdowns and antisocial distancing dictates.
These bipartisan assaults on enterprise have yielded up to 150,000 “deaths of despair.”
These are killings by suicide, by drink, by drug, etc.
How many Americans has the virus murdered?
145,000… as the official figure runs.
Anarchy From the Very Top
Yet we have failed to mention the arbitrary, chaotic and lunatic policies of the United States government — and its central bank.
The federal budget deficit exceeded $863 billion in June alone. As our former colleague David Stockman notes…
The entire public debt was $863 billion in 1980. The federal government had required 192 years and 39 presidents to scale that inglorious height.
Thus in 30 days, David shrieks, the government of the United States borrowed nearly two centuries worth of debt.
This year’s deficit may near or exceed $5 trillion.
The Federal Reserve — meantime — has unleashed monetary bedlam…
“Unelected, Unaccountable Bureaucrats”
It has fabricated $3 trillion in four months’ space. It may fabricate $7 trillion more by year’s end if our sources are accurate.
And who can say what additional skullduggeries it will get up to?
Are We the People granted a vote on any of it?
Wealth manager Tim Price:
Our entire central bank controlled financial system is based on the premise that unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats should be able to direct individuals’ consumption and production behavior from ivory tower conclaves.
And so it goes. And so it goes.
Here we stand in July, Anno Domini 2020…
America confronts anarchy from above, anarchy from below, anarchy to the left, anarchy to the right…
Anarchy in every direction…
Managing editor, The Daily Reckoning