Many people write or speak to tell us what we should think. Some want to be believed because they are experts, or think they are. Some want to be believed because they claim to speak for us. Some have had revelations. Others want us to trust them because they communicate through prominent media outlets. Many tell us what we should think. I write to encourage my readers to think for themselves. I write to ask you to inquire. Question me. Have fun.

  
Comment of the Day
Less fight more work

Jul 30, 2017

The fight over Obamacare repeal is over, at least for now. The GOP can start to work on a new proposal that each of us can look at it, and then compare how my particular health care solution would play in it, as compared to Obamacare. In a television interview, HHS Secretary Tom Price said that Obamacare “may be working for Washington, it may be working for insurance companies, but it’s not working for patients.” Maybe it is time to consider patients’ involvement in the preparation of an Obamacare alternative? It could be that Obamacare repeal failed just because it has been prepared by Washington with consultation from insurance companies. Let us start with addressing 19 health care issues that politicians avoid talking about.

PREVIOUS COMMENTS
How to pay for the wall?
Apr 04, 2017

If you want to build the wall, pay for it with your own money. How much of your own money are you willing to donate? Trump received 62,979,879 votes. If each of Trump’s supporters voluntarily donates at least $1,000, which corresponds to about $42 per month for the next two years, and if we encourage those who are more affluent to double their donations, then Trump can have on hand about $100 billion, which may suffice for a substantial piece of the wall. Hence, all of you who are talking loudly about spending my money on building this wall, stay away from my wallet, but open your own wallet and send money to the “Build the Wall Fund.” Put your money where your mouth is.

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What is wrong with Russia?
Dec 22, 2015

It appears that Russian leaders cannot free themselves from the medieval concept of regional influence, where weaker neighbors were subdued into becoming serf states. Is anyone capable of explaining to them that in these times of a global economy, any influence comes from economic strength? Russia, thanks to its size, natural resources and well-educated labor force, has everything that it takes to maintain a dominant position in the region, just by maintaining free trade with all its neighbors. It can do so without military interventions in Georgia and in Ukraine. Russia has everything that it takes to be a respected wealthier neighbor, to whom everyone in the region would turn for help when needed. Instead, it is a bully and a hooligan. It would take so little to change that. But it is so hard for Russia to do it. 

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Closed mind for closed borders
Nov 19, 2015

Known to some as a libertarian, Llewellyn H. Rockwell Jr. speaks against open borders. His argument is that it is an infraction against private property. He misses the point that most people migrate just because Mr. Rockwell’s neighbors want them on their private property – for picking apples, washing the dishes or writing a computer code. Then, Mr. Rockwell wrongly laments that those foreigners invited by his neighbors violate his private property rights by loitering in the public spaces that he frequents. He wants the government to deny the rights of his neighbors to do on their private property whatever they wish, so he will not need to face immigrants in the public spaces. Mr. Rockwell left the train called “liberty” at the station called “xenophobia.”    

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They do not know…
Sep 14, 2015

Mr. Trump says: “A lot of what I’m doing is by instinct.” I prefer that our President would make decisions based on systematic due diligence. The instinct that guides Mr. Trump in his professional life arrives from his vast experience, starting when he was growing up under the mentoring of his successful father, followed by a solid education and years of practice. Mr. Trump's confidence is misguiding, as it gives his supporters the illusion that someone who mastered real estate dealing can be equally skillful as President. It is similar to the illusion surrounding Dr. Carson, that he can be as good a President as he is a brain surgeon. If both gentlemen were humbler, they would realize that they qualify to be President equally as much as Mr. Trump qualifies to conduct brain surgeries and Dr. Carson to run Mr. Trump’s real estate empire. The problem is not that they do not know many things they should; the problem is that they do not realize that.

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Freedom cannot be legislated, its restriction can
Mar 31, 2015

Indiana voted in the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. In his WSJ piece, Gov. Mike Pence claims it was needed to protect the religious freedoms of Hoosiers. Every legislative act by its nature limits someone’s freedom. The only way of increasing freedom is by identifying existing laws that curb personal liberties and then eliminating them.  Hence, if Gov. Pence sees that under some circumstances, the religious freedoms of Hoosiers are not respected, he could correct the situation by eliminating laws causing this problem. We have the Bill of Rights, and it suffices. No “enhancements” are needed.

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Greed-driven health care
Feb 27, 2015

The solution to our health care crisis is in the implementation of more market-driven mechanisms into our health care policy. This is the only way to give patients the freedom to make decisions regarding their care between them and their doctors; not having these decisions made by faceless bureaucrats. The biggest obstacle in implementing a change of this kind is in a deep public conviction that the introduction of the free market into health care will result in doctors, hospitals, the pharmaceutical industry and everybody else involved being guided by their greed, not the best interests of sick people. The biggest challenge in overturning Obamacare is not in Washington. It is in winning the argument with Americans that free-market-driven health care can serve their needs much better than the government-distributed one.

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Conservatives versus liberals

Judging by the tone of some political commentators, one might get an impression that the division between conservatives and liberals (sometimes also called progressives) is an essential ideological division within the nation. Nothing more wrong. The split into conservatives and liberals is a rift within the political establishment, which more confuses the public than helps Americans to make educated political decisions.  

Before elaborating more on the merit of this thesis, let me focus on a mere technicality. If conservatives versus liberals were a meaningful division, it would mean that the truth is somewhere between these two options; the right solutions would be always on hand from one side or another of the political spectrum. And, if brought to light, in most instances it would prevail. This is not what has been going on in Washington for the last twenty years or so. In science or in business, every time two opposite points of view come across there is a way to sort out the facts, and apply the available knowledge in order to reach a constructive conclusion. This does not happen when conservatives and liberals need to do something together. Regardless if someone is a conservative or liberal, one needs to acknowledge that approaching our problems in the conservative versus liberal dimensions is unproductive; it does not work. I believe that it is infertile because of etheric and often deceptive meaning of these terms. In science and in business it is impossible to reach any useful conclusion if reference points are not clearly defined. It is the same in politics because meanings of terms “conservative” and “liberal” or “progressive” are vague. When it comes down to the details of political debates and decisions there are not solid reference points; hence, disagreements become emotional and personal. With the lack of clarity, particular interests prevail in political decision to the point that, with every day passing, Americans’ distrust of the political establishment goes even deeper.

The meaningful improvement can happen if we all agree on the unproductivity of conservatives versus liberals division and express our political orientation in relation to other reference points. In other words if we find other terms, assumingly more precise, that will replace terms “conservative” and “liberal”. I propose that we abandon using the term “conservative” and replace it with the term “capitalist” in the meaning of a supporter of capitalism. Similarly, I suggest that we abandon using the term “liberal” or “progressive” and replace it with “socialist” as a supporter of socialism.

For capitalists, everyone should have the freedom to run his or her life, and bear consequences of decisions made. Not everyone makes wise decisions, often not at his or her faults, for example due to poor upbringing. Some are struck by disasters beyond their control, such as a major sickness. Socialists are compelled to assign government a role of assisting the misfortunate among us. Capitalists are for leaving this to private charities. Socialists see this as humiliating; they believe that the progressive industrial society can afford more dignified support for the misfortunate. Unfortunately, they ignore that it is in the human nature that dignity, similar to satisfaction and happiness in life – cannot be given; they have to be earned. Self-esteem does not come from the handouts or from the hollow compliments but from the gratification from one’s own accomplishments. The easiest way to get satisfaction in life is from the job well done; happiness comes from the paycheck earned even if it is not much higher than the check handed out.

The free market is perceived by many Americans as pejorative, as extreme and as not practical. The free market, when taken consequently, could be seen as a cruel political concept. However, it is a cruelty of an accountant telling us that two plus two is always four, regardless of how we feel about it. As we all became richer, thanks to the free market, many Americans achieved the level of economic comfort that allowed them to focus on the feelings, and influence policy accordingly. And this is where things turned bad for capitalism. Since then socialistic ideas have gained much more ground in the U.S. For the meaningful segments of both the public and the political establishments, across the whole political spectrum, purely socialistic concepts are what America is all about. .

Republicans vs Democrats

As one might expect, today’s liberals openly advocate socialistic policies, but what might surprise many, a close look at today’s conservatives shows that they have been soaked with socialistic thinking as well. This is the reason that they have been losing influence in recent years, and this is the reason, that I advocate for abandonment of terms “conservative” and “liberal”, and replacing them with “capitalist” and “socialist”.

A version of this text was published by Huffington Post

I added a picture found somewhere on the internet. I could not find the author, so I cannot give credits. The picture is great and I will gladly give credits if I can find the author. HAK

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  1. Pingback: With a Hoe Against the Sun | In perpetual search for reason

About me

I was born in 1951 in Gdansk, Poland.
Since my high school years, I have interest in politics and love for writing. During my college years, I started writing to student papers and soon became freelance author to major Polish political magazines.

In 1980 I wrote a book “Czy w Polsce może być lepiej?” (“Could it be better in Poland?” – this book is available only in Polish) analyzing major problems in Poland at the time and outlining possible solutions.

I was among those Polish political writers who by their writings contributed to the peaceful system transformation that finally took place in 1989. Since 1985, I live in the Chicago area. I went through the hard times typical of many immigrants. Working in service business, I have seen the best and the worst places, I met the poorest and the richest. I have seen and experienced America not known to most of politicians, business people, and other political writers. For eleven years, I ran my own company. Presently, I am an independent consultant.

My political writing comes out of necessity. I write when I see that the prevailing voices on the political arena are misleading or erroneous. Abstract mathematics and control theory (of complex technological processes) strongly influenced my understanding of social phenomena. In the past, my opponents rebuked my mathematical mind as cold, soulless, and inhuman. On a few occasions I was prized for my engineer’s precision and logic.

I have a master’s degree in electronic engineering with a specialization in mathematical machines from Politechnika Gdańska (Technical University of Gdansk).

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