The Left’s bold plans for America – and the coming crash

Summary: The Left grows more ambitious, accelerating and broadening their programs to remold America. Meanwhile, the consequences of their policies of the past 50 years loom ahead – a crash with few precedents in our history. Will they change course or press on? How will we react to their latest plans? How will we respond to the coming crash? These are the choices that will make our future. Of course, we will neither look ahead or prepare.

“A society does not ever die ‘from natural causes’, but always dies from suicide or murder – and nearly always from the former….”
― From Arnold Joseph Toynbee’s A Study of History. Failure is always an option.

This won’t end well for us.

Flying aircraft with burning engine just before it crashes
ID 108836828 © picture.jacker | Dreamstime.

About the Left’s latest experiment on Americans

California’s Prop 47 leads to rise in shoplifting,
thefts, criminal activity across state
.”

By Fox News, 1 November.

Proposition 47 was supported by the state Democratic Party and championed by the American Civil Liberties Union {and} passed by a wide margin in 2014. The idea behind it was to reduce certain non-violent felonies to misdemeanors in order to free up resources for cops and prosecutors to focus on violent offenders. …

Since Proposition 47 was passed, there has been an increase in theft across the state. Cities like San Francisco have seen organized crime rings turn shoplifting into a well-organized racket …. Among the nation’s 20 largest cities, San Francisco now has the highest rate of property crime, which includes theft, shoplifting and vandalism.

Del Seymour, founder of the non-profit Code Tenderloin, told Fox News that fencers – often from Mexico and Guatemala – set up shop in the middle of the day and night around the city’s United Nations Plaza area. He said he’s also noticed that the stealers and dealers have gotten bolder by the day. The retail heists taking place, he said, aren’t some small-time operation but instead a sophisticated network of international dealers who cross the border to buy stolen goods. …

The problem isn’t just San Francisco-based. Across the state, retailers say they have been hit hard by shoplifters since Prop 47 went into effect. …In San Diego County, 7-Eleven franchise owner Jassi Dhillon told NBC 7 that he has to deal with shoplifters at all six of his store locations. “It’s happening every day, hour by hour,” he said. Dhillon said shoplifting isn’t a priority to law enforcement and said when cops do show up, the shoplifter has left the store or isn’t concerned about the citation they are issued. ‘It’s becoming a lifestyle for us now because we can’t do anything much except take the loss,’ he said.

Rachel Michelin, president of the California Retailers Association, said …She said black-market dealers frequently cross state lines because they know California will go easy on them if caught. ‘They know what they’re doing. They will bring in calculators and get all the way up to the $950 limit,’ Michelin told Fox News, adding that ‘one person will go into a store, fill up their backpack, come out, dump it out and go right back in and do it all over again.’ Michelin said she’s seen footage from member retailers that she described as ‘completely insane.’ ‘They will go into a grocery store, steal alcohol and walk out the front door with it,’ she said. ‘They know no one is going to prosecute them. The district attorneys aren’t.’ She added that there are even more sinister acts afoot. Many out-of-state crime rings use children to do their dirty work because they know they’re low on the totem pole of prosecutions. …’teenagers know that there are no consequences anymore. It’s part of a game. If you get caught, all you have to do is get out of the store.’

The NYT puts a positive spin on this: “In California, Criminal Justice Reform Offers a Lesson for the Nation.” Allowing all these “small” crimes to take place without arrest and prosecution means that they are not in the statistics – therefore they are not a problem! They point to the rates of violent crime and large-scale theft, unaffected by Prop 47, as evidence that Prop 47 is working. Q.E.D.

Eric Sandberg at National Review gives a more accurate perspective.

After Proposition 47: Crime and No Consequences in California.

California’s Proposition 47 downgraded a variety of “non-serious, nonviolent crimes” that had previously been considered felonies to misdemeanors. These include shoplifting, grand theft, receiving stolen property, forgery, fraud, and writing bad checks. As long as the total value of the stolen property is under $950, only a ghost of an offense has occurred. A thief may now steal something under that limit on a daily basis and it will never rise to felony status. In the event that a perpetrator is pursued and apprehended, the consequence can be a small fine or a brief stay in jail, In reality, these repercussions are rare. …

The underlying premise of Proposition 47 was to free up funds so the state could focus on violent and serious offenders. Savings would be diverted to school-based prevention and support programs, victim services, and mental-health and drug treatment. Therefore petty thieves, who might be drug addicts, would avoid costly and ultimately detrimental incarceration. …

Nearly a thousand dollars in stolen property is hardly minor, especially to those who have little to lose. …A liberal Berkeley student studying in a café whose laptop is swiped from a table feels just as violated as the right-leaning visitor to Los Angeles whose luggage is stolen. A struggling small-business owner wonders how long he can withstand the damage done by constant pilfering. ‘Every bicycle in our building has been stolen,’ says Karen Burns, president of a San Francisco condo association. ‘I’ve caught so many people stealing packages. They don’t care. They know nothing will happen to them. It’s crazy. It’s horrible.’

For law enforcement, however, there is little incentive to chase down low-level criminals. Even if the person is escorted to the station, odds are great he’ll be back on the street in an hour or so.

Proposition 47 didn’t stop with theft. The personal use of illegal drugs was also reclassified to a misdemeanor. Although the intent may have been kind (it’s cruel to punish people for having an addiction) and practical (they’ll emerge from prison hardened, and a felony on their record makes it more difficult to reintegrate into society), the downstream impact on the community at large has been disastrous. In San Fransisco, for example, shooting up in public is commonplace, whether it’s on the steps of City Hall, in front of a supermarket, or at the entrance to a children’s playground. …Now more than ever, residents and merchants are living with a proliferation of addicts who roll up their sleeves, inject, and then nod off on the sidewalks or career down the street and into traffic. To fulfill customer demand, dealers sell packets of powder or pills in plain view of passers-by. There is no reason to hide. Why not shoot up wherever you want, leave bloody syringes in piles, steal, and deal when there are few if any consequences? …

This is just the beginning

The Left has begun a campaign to delegitimize and defund police. See the hashtags on Twitter, such as #fundcommunities, or search for “defund police.” Lots of them. And in New York City: “Anti-cop protesters in Brooklyn blast fare evasion crackdown.” The subways system in NYC is breaking down from decades of underfunding; fare evasion costs several hundred million dollars each year.

Close to a thousand anti-police protesters descended on Downtown Brooklyn Friday night, blocking traffic, vandalizing a city bus and shouting obscene insults at NYPD cops. The demonstration formed soon after 7 p.m. on the streets near the Barclays Center, with protesters unfurling large banners that read “F—k the police” and “Don’t let these pigs touch us.” …The demonstration was in response to a planned crackdown on fare evasion by the NYPD …”

Of course, the squad is there to cheer them on.

Path in dark forest.
ID 77462338 © Pkanchana | Dreamstime.

Looking ahead

The next two decades will see one of the most significant transitions in US history, as scores of State and local governments that have been long run by the Democratic Party collapse. Some will default (in the US, States are sovereign – they can and have defaulted on loans but do not file “bankruptcy”) or file for bankruptcy (lavish but underfunded pensions will be the most frequent precipitating event).

Some will crash due to social instability from a growing underclass (fed by open borders), eroding political legitimacy, middle-class flight, and mad public policies (e.g., in education and maintaining public order). San Francisco is a candidate for this, unless severe changes are made soon. Others will follow. A severe recession will make these crashes more likely.

As this future becomes more visible, the Left’s desire for radical social experimentation becomes stronger. The pace of change they are forcing America through accelerates. Fourth generation feminism (the quest for superiority). Promoting transgender and other new experiments in gender relations in schools (e.g., drag queen story hour). A radical reinterpretation of US history to delegitimize the Constitutional Regime (e.g., the NYT’s 1619 Project – it is all about slavery. Drastic redistribution of wealth and income. Not just opening the borders, but encouraging migrants with cash and services (irreversibly remolding America in a generation). Forced drastic changes in lifestyles to fight the “Climate Emergency” that the IPCC’s scientists don’t see. The list grows each month.

Perhaps we will see a collision between our increasingly powerful Leftist elites – who control academia, much of the news media and NGO, most of the new tech elite – and a public enraged at the crash of so many Democrat-run State and local governments. Or perhaps like good peons we will just accept whatever lot our rulers give us, whine and carry on.

Either way, our choices will make America’s future.

For More Information

Ideas! For shopping ideas, see my recommended books and films at Amazon.

If you found this post of use, like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter. See all posts about Republicans and Democrats, about the Left and the Right, about our broken criminal justice system, about ways to reform America politics, and especially these…

  1. Visions of America if the Left wins.
  2. The Left hates America and will destroy it.
  3. The Democrats show us the politics of ClownWorld.
  4. Two levers to bring the Democrats victory in 2020.
  5. Stoking hatred in America for political gain.

Books about our broken criminal justice system

Our system is broken, but that does not make it wise to facilitate crime.

Prison Break: Why Conservatives Turned Against Mass Incarceration by David Dagan and Steven Teles (2016). Dagan is a journalist with a PhD in political science. Teles is an Assc. Professor of Political Science at Johns Hopkins.

Locking Up Our Own: Crime and Punishment in Black America by James Forman Jr. (2017). He is a Professor of Law at Yale. See my review.

Locked In by John F. Pfaff (2017) – “The True Causes of Mass Incarceration and How to Achieve Real Reform.” He is a Professor of Law at Fordham. See my review of this important book. Also, see the review by Joseph M. Bessette in the Claremont Review of Books.

The Collapse of American Criminal Justice by William J. Stuntz (2011). He was a Professor of Law at Harvard. See some excerpts here.

Locked In: The True Causes of Mass Incarceration and How to Achieve Real Reform
Available at Amazon.
The Collapse of American Criminal Justice
Available at Amazon.

 

33 thoughts on “The Left’s bold plans for America – and the coming crash”

  1. Larry, do you see that Proposition 47 is in fact a start of the system that James Forman wanted to be tried as an experiment?

    To me it appears that it is a start in the wrong way, because it got rid of accountability. Forman wanted real justice and reform, which meant accountability. The California system appears to be a mockery of his ideas, not an experiment.

    1. In addition, as to why Prop 47 and future dismantling by the liberals, let’s look at the elephant in the room:

      “A major source of objection to a free economy is precisely that it … gives people what they want instead of what a particular group thinks they ought to want. Underlying most arguments against the free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself.” Milton Friedman

      Warren: “I am a capitalist. Come on. I believe in markets. What I don’t believe in is theft, what I don’t believe in is cheating. That’s where the difference is. I love what markets can do, I love what functioning economies can do. They are what make us rich, they are what create opportunity. But only fair markets, markets with rules. Markets without rules is about the rich take it all, it’s about the powerful get all of it. And that’s what’s gone wrong in America.” – CNBC | July 2018

      and Sanders: In the year 2019 the United States and the rest of the world face two very different political paths. On one hand, there is a growing movement towards oligarchy and authoritarianism in which a small number of incredibly wealthy and powerful billionaires own and control a significant part of the economy and exert enormous influence over the political life of our country. On the other hand, in opposition to oligarchy, there is a movement of working people and young people who, in ever increasing numbers, are fighting for justice. – Sanders’s remarks, courtesy of his presidential campaign at VOX.

      1. John,

        First, there is the oddity of Warren, with her Statist – even authoritarian – ideas talking about “freedom.”

        Second, what is the relationship between those quotes and criminal law (eg, prop 47)?

      2. LK: Second, what is the relationship between those quotes and criminal law (eg, prop 47)?

        It is the effect of Prop 47 to the acceptance of law by the population.

        LK: Summary: The Left grows more ambitious, accelerating and broadening their programs to remold America.

        The mold I see is attacking the underpinnings of both our law and our economic system. Prop 47 is synergistic in destruction of both the public’s acceptance of law, and a free economic system.

        This was my point and opinion. Hurrying because I am going out. Will try to do better next time.

  2. Every manifesto promise should come with a list of benefits, potential problems, and a date by which the success can be judged and criteria for measurement. Then, the politicians offering it should be expected to offer something of their own to be paid if the policy is judged to have failed.

    It doesn’t have to be a pound of flesh, but perhaps at the very least a promise to leave politics and never return? Or a house, or their rights to their pension or pay 10 years salary. After all, we expect banks to delay paying bonuses and to claw back when management policies fail. Why not politicians who have a much more impressive track record of failure?

    Because otherwise it looks like they can promise any old bollocks and just walk away unscathed and leave others bear the consequences when it all goes horribly wrong.

    1. Steve,

      “the politicians offering it should be expected to offer something of their own to be paid if the policy is judged to have failed.”

      And what you give as a reward if the policy is successful? Or do you just want no public policy initiatives?

      Also, you appear to assume that citizens can’t evaluate proposals – so draconian measures are needed to limit proposals that are considered.

      I’ll stick with the machinery bequeathed us by the Founders’ rather than dreaming up wild ideas.

  3. Once again, idealism collides painfully with reality, amid much collateral damage.

    Seems to me that we have been down this road before. Wasn’t there a similar “reform” in the late 1960s-early 1970s? And did that not also lead to an explosion of crime followed by official pushback in the form of three-strikes laws and such?

    We are a less cohesive and resilient society now than we were then so recovery, i.e. a return to sanity, likely won’t be speedy, if it occurs at all.

    California, always the leader, shows us how to do “dystopia.”

    Have said it before, will say it again: You must have rules and roles understood by all, or everything collapses. Why is this simple, painfully obvious concept so difficult for some to grasp?

    1. Scott,

      “Wasn’t there a similar “reform” in the late 1960s-early 1970s?”

      Exactly the opposite. From the magisterial National Academy study:

      “These changes ultimately resulted in major increases in the government’s capacity to pursue and punish lawbreakers and, beginning in the 1970s, in an escalation of sanctions for a wide range of crimes. Furthermore, criminal justice became a persistent rather than an intermittent issue in U.S. politics. To a degree unparalleled in U.S. history, politicians and public officials beginning in the 1960s regularly deployed criminal justice legislation and policies for expressive political purposes as they made “street crime”—both real and imagined—a major national, state, and local issue.”

      https://www.nap.edu/read/18613/chapter/6#105

      There is a conservative meme saying otherwise, but that’s typical right-wing faux history.

      1. I stand corrected. Thank you.

        Apparently I had forgotten all I learned from “The Collapse of American Criminal Justice” by William Stuntz.

    2. I don’t think we were ever quite that far down the road before, where shoplifting $900 of merchandise is just a misdemeanor.

      Anyway, we have to get involved to make sure this kind of nonsense never gets legislated elsewhere. And there is hope. Denver recently had a voter proposition to decriminalize camping in public spaces (parks, sidewalks, etc.). “The Right To Survive” it was called. It went down in flames, much to the astonishment of its proponents:

      https://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/local-news/denver-voters-overwhelmingly-defeat-right-to-rest-initiative-what-happens-next

  4. Totally agree this is beyond reckless, but, idk about a crash like you describe. Certainly more crime, chaos and violence. A big new market for security services perhaps. Populism on the left or right, both involves just printing and spending more money with the fed expanding the balance sheet with more and more money. Both sides completely agree here. All the central banks are in on this, so it seems to crash with a devastation of war or some currency collapse. Whose will collapse first? And will they use all those shiny weapons?

    1. Kingfisher,

      “involves just printing and spending more money with the fed expanding the balance sheet with more and more money.”

      Let’s not get into some master giant doomsayer story.

      This is a narrow and specific “event”. The collision of Leftists’ ambitions and the reality that they have mismanaged some cities and States.

      I don’t predict the outcome. Such guess are for the overconfident or for fun.

      While perhaps significant politically, this won’t necessarily be of historical significance. Almost everybody has forgotten the first two waves of State bankruptcies.

      “the central banks are in on this”

      Central banks in most nations, such as the US, are agencies of the government- and no more nefarious than the bureau of weights and measures. Despite loony right/wing myths.

      “So it seems to crash with a devastation of war or some currency collapse. Whose will collapse first?”

      Total nonsense.

    2. I’m in Socal and there is a rise in burglaries and thefts. What i’m seeing is products like Ring and /or other internet based security cameras actually help in arrests.

      How Ring works is the owners upload their images, GPS marks the incidents, etc. based on the time and location, these incidents are compiled, some cameras have faces captured, others the suspects’ cars, others their license plate or other identifiable items.

      i’m not sure if Ring automatically works with police or police just enlist one or two Ring owners to access all the intel. But they tend to make arrests lickity split using Ring info.

      Here,

      https://support.ring.com/hc/en-us/sections/360006128771-Neighbors-app

      1. My point here is that there’s no money, no new programs, being spent.

        Just a bunch of Ring owners, supported by Ring app, generating and accessing intel in real time, which can be shared to police.

      2. p.p.s. — I do understand and have considered the whole Panopticon thingy happening here, re Big Brother is Watching.

        but so long as the cameras are owned privately, and no tax payer funding is made, this Ring phenomenon is just fine.

      3. LcPl,

        “I’m in Socal and there is a rise in burglaries and thefts.”

        After your bizarrely false comments about crime in Chicago and Mexico, I’d like to see evidence of that before paying attention. All the FBI reports show is the usual annual variation – no rising trend (eg, see Orange County).

      4. Larry, I’m just agreeing to the blog re Prop 47, and local news and community scuttlebutt.

        I don’t really make a habit of reading crime stats, precisely because as that article you’ve linked to suggests, crime stats can be massaged, pro or con. they can be politicized. to fit agendas.

        I’m not in Orange county but operate around LA, Ventura and Kern counties. the not so rich parts of Socal.

        And when i lick my index finger, and put it out into the wind, it says thefts and burglaries are up, than usual. Whether that’s because of Prop 47 not really sure, sure

        it could be seasonal, like Christmas is coming. but on a whole from local news and community (folks i know, people i meet, things i hear), burglaries and thefts are on the rise.

        flash mob robberies of mall shops, 7 Elevens, liquor stores are up too, robbery because the mob redefines the act as force or fear.

        I’m agreeing to the above blog, is what i’m saying here, Larry.

      5. Lcpl,

        Thanks for the explanation.

        Note that these things take time to have effect, as the underclass is slow to react. In San Francisco, a small city, it is just in the last year or so things have unwound big time from Prop 47. My guess (guess) is that the vast southern california area will be hard-hit – eventually.

        Unfortunately, once behavior tilts towards chaos – it is difficult to adjust back to order. Ofter very difficult. Once prohibition fueled the massive growth of organized crime, legalizing booze did make those organizations shrink back to their previous size.

  5. Personally, i hate these blue or red striped American flags. i support cops and firemen, but this is defacing the flag IMHO. I love linemen, electrical guys, they have their own tshirts and stickers, mostly of linemen climbing electrical poles, with motto something like “God created linemen so cops and firemen can have heroes”. Lol!!!

    I’m already on record here, hating on academia, insisting that students start making things with their hands. Art and design schools have it right; do while theorizing. but do first, make first, then theorize, and max philosphic after making.

    I’m a big fan of oldies like W. Wattles or Napoleon Hill these are American works, every American should read. Lately, Tim Ferris comes closest to these old dudes.

    So how do you counter the Left or Dems worldview, you introduce Wallace Wattles and Napoleon Hill back into school, high school and trade schools. bring back, wood shop, electric , plumbing, auto, etc. etc.

    I do believe the prison industry is a big business akin to the military-industrial complex. Get those prisoners working and making things inside jails, commute sentences then have ’em leave prison so they can make stuff like the rest of us— i don’t wanna spend anymore for them.

    They get Universal healthcare while i’m here having to make ends meet. Get them out. too much tax dollars are spent on them. it’s a scam!!!

    They are busy doing drugs in prison, when prison guards know exactly how to stop the drug trade in prison. you can’t get them busy making stuff if they’re busy getting high. So have drug sniffing dogs outside, when staff enter and during visiting. why there aren’t drug dogs??? not PC to have dogs.

    Then introduce them to Wallace Wattles and Napoleon HIlls, instead of all that Sun Tzu and Machiavelli they’re reading in there.

    Tim Ferris, everyone in Middle School needs to read Tim Ferris, and Tim Ferris needs to be promoted more by the Dept. of Education, write to Betsy Prince deVos. tell her have Tim Ferris succeed her.

    1. “Personally, i hate these blue or red striped American flags. i support cops and firemen, but this is defacing the flag IMHO.”

      I disagree with you on most of the rest of what you said but I am one hundred percent with you here. Though I’ve never seen one of the fireman ones. I imagine firemen are more popular/prominent on the west coast.

      In my unhinged loony leftist hysterical vision of American society, being a policeman would be a respectable public service position with a good middle-class paycheck, appreciation for its higher rate of physical peril than being an accountant, and — that’s it; instead, well, we see what we have now. Our cultural relationship with the police is going to give some future scholars a lot of material to examine.

      1. http://www.northescambia.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/flomatonflags11.jpg

        Don’t de-face the flag. Create your own flag instead, is all i’m asking.

        As for police-public relationship, i think if police weren’t push to issue say traffic tickets or encouraged to make officer generated arrests , and only made arrests upon public request, then there would be less police-public friction, and more support for cops.

        Though less proactive policing would also result in more crimes. Police don’t have the same luxury as firemen with fire and medical emergencies, because crime tend to be less visible.

        it’s a balance, i know. just don’t use the flag to make your political marks, is all. Don’t de-face the flag.

        re the blog at hand, I do believe that civil service protection (meaning difficult to fire the employee, as in gov’t careers) should be enough to elicit more than qualified recruits both for police and fire, and the 3 figure salaries being touted now is too

        extravagant for taxpayers to carry, and not justified for mostly high school grads. Most young cops make 90K on their salary plus another 90K from overtime, on top of that is civil service protection. On top of that still, is 100% pension like after 20 years, or some crazy sht like that.

        Weigh civil service protection with the salary, make job security the main come on, decrease the pay— they’re just high school graduates. AND. Disband police unions.

  6. “I left my heart in San Francisco…”
    Also my cell phone, my wallet, my laptop, my suitcase, ….
    Some bastard pinched ’em!

  7. Do you think maybe this is what is happening? That the US nomenklatura has lost faith in the enterprise?

    If that is right it has similarities to the fall of the Soviet Union. People in policy making positions simply stop believing in the system they are operating, and at that point rational restraints start to erode. Behavior starts to be less and less goal directed and becomes increasingly arbitrary.

    You have some signs of that in this piece – changes to law enforcement which have the effect of increasing incentives to crime. But also energy proposals which cannot have any effect on the climate. Failure (in California) to maintain the grid infrasctructure. The pursuit of impeachment as a supplement to changes by election. The pointless wars.

    If this is right, Larry’s optimism that the people can act and take back control may not be a possible or likely response. The people are behaving pretty much as they always have, or are trying to. But the nomenklatura are not responding, and the reason maybe is they have lost faith in the whole enterprise.

    I am looking at the UK and thinking in a sort of similar way – people keep reproaching the Labour Party moderates with not taking action on Corbyn. But maybe they are looking at that too in the wrong way. Maybe the reason is not cowardice or lack of energy, maybe its because actually and at bottom they agree with him. Maybe anti-semitism is far more pervasive in Labour, and always has been, than anyone has ever been prepared to notice or admit? Maybe its not a small cabal that has taken over. Maybe its the majority view emerging into the open?

    You do sometimes in these matters have to look at the possibility that maybe you have got the whole premise and perspective wrong.

    1. henrik,

      “That the US nomenklatura has lost faith in the enterprise?”

      First, the US has nothing remotely like a nomenklatura. The structure of our ruling elites is radically different from that of the USSR.

      Second, my guess (guess) is that they have just found other models of governance that are more useful or attractive to them. Democracy is a special and rare taste in people, whether rulers or commoners.

      1. I agree they are very different, it was a careless expression. But I do also think its possible that the underlying phenomenon is loss of belief on the part of the elite, which has spread downwards and become a commonplace in the general culture.

        I was not thinking of loss of belief in democracy, though maybe that has happened too. I was thinking more of a loss of belief in the whole American model. There used to be a fine, focused optimism in American culture. There were problems, but people were confident they could be dealt with and they didn’t affect their belief in the fundamental rightness of the country and its base institutions.

        What I think we may be seeing now is the increasing view that its rotten, not rescueable, and so we are doing and proposing more and more irrational things which we appeal to our dissatisfactions to justify, but which will, considered logically and rationally, have little or no effect on them.

        Its a sad and worrying spectacle. Its not the country I used to live in. Which certainly had its problems, but it also had along with them a visible confidence that they could be resolved.

  8. Drugs are essentially decriminalized here in the Netherlands. Why aren’t we up to our eyeballs in homeless junkies? Furthermore, the police here are neither feared nor respected. And yet, other than people stealing unlocked bikes, crime here is almost non existent.

    1. Rando,

      “Drugs are essentially decriminalized here in the Netherlands …the police” etc.

      These things are mysterious. Cultures make different people, something well known in classical Greece yet often forgotten now – in favor of the industrialists’ vision that we’re interchangeable cogs.

      Also, the Netherlands’ population is only 5% of that of the US. Perhaps there is a diversity or scale effect at work.

      Perhaps Netherlands is just a sheltered cove, with its population 88% European. Another generation or two of open borders might make it a polyglot multi-cultural society – and discover it has the same problems as the US.

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