Liberty, says the Bolshevist, is a bourgeois prejudice. The common man does not have any ideas of his own, he does not write books, does not hatch heresies, and does not invent new methods of production. He just wants to enjoy life. He has no use for the class interests of the intellectuals who make a living as professional dissenters and innovators.
This is certainly the most arrogant disdain of the plain citizen ever devised. There is no need to argue this point. For the question is not whether or not the common man can himself take advantage of the liberty to think, to speak, and to write books. The question is whether or not the sluggish routinist profits from the freedom granted to those who eclipse him in intelligence and will power. The common man may look with indifference and even contempt upon the dealings of better people. But he is delighted to enjoy all the benefits which the endeavors of the innovators put at his disposal. He has no comprehension of what in his eyes is merely inane hair-splitting. But as soon as these thoughts and theories are utilized by enterprising businessmen for satisfying some of his latent wishes, he hurries to acquire the new products. The common man is without doubt the main beneficiary of all the accomplishments of modern science and technology.
And this is the great irony of all those young (and some not-so-young) people who are feelin’ the Bern, and advocating for increasing socialization of our already hybrid economy.
There are few things as ironic as a clueless nitwit of an “anti-capitalist” at a protest with his iPhone clutched in one grubby mitt. Much of the issues that the professional protesting class are whinging about are only issues because of the wealth produced by free markets. And they never once, not even for a moment, stop to consider what would happen to the wondrous, enormous machine of innovation and improvement if the profit motive was reduced or removed.
Fortunately we have a great example for them – Venezuela, where the dining spot of choice these days is a garbage heap. There’s the end game of the course that the loony old Bolshevik and his followers would set us on.
Free minds and free markets – liberty and property. That’s the key to economic growth. It’s too bad none of the candidates for the Imperial Mansion are advocating for those.