On the merits of fear as a motivator.

In case you were wondering whether anything that we do has any effect at all, let me remind you: stopping bad things from happening is a meritorious act, too. Case in point?  The ban on earmarks. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid really, really wants that ban overturned: problem is, Speaker John Boehner refuses to consider it. And there’s no love there in the Senate, either:

Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, who would be in line to lead the Senate if Republicans win control of the chamber in November, is opposed to restoring earmarks, a spokesman said. Asked whether Mr. McConnell agreed with Mr. Reid that it was time to rethink the ban, his spokesman flatly said, “No.”

It is my professional opinion that Speaker Boehner and Senate Minority Leader McConnell’s principled stance on this is very much informed by a perfectly-logical reluctance to walk into spinning buzz-saws.  And do you know something? I’m fine with that.  Because listen to your Uncle Milton:


Essentiallythe important thing is to establish a political climate of opinion which will make it politically profitable for the wrong people to do the right thing. I dunno if that’s a direct Milton Friedman quote or just the summary by the person who put up the YT video, but either way it’s correct.

Moe Lane

4 thoughts on “On the merits of fear as a motivator.”

  1. It’s nice to be liked. It’s nice to get along. It’s nice to agree.
    I’ll take nice over having to scare the {effluent} out of the gutless D.C. wing of the GOP any day.
    That said, I will happily lead the gutless D.C. wing of the GOP to believe I’ll put on my Timberlands and kick the {excrement} out of them if they stray ..
    p.s. Note that what I’ll actually be doing is sending the money I saved to buy a new pair off to a tea party PAC and wearing out the soles in the old pair putting up fliers.

  2. I don’t think McConnell is genuine in opposing a restoration of Earmarks. The man was the earmark king, or at least vied with Ted Stevens for that position.
    And after 2014 he’ll be safe for 6 years. Fear will no longer be a motivator for him. Not so with Boehner who has to worry about re-election all the time.

    1. You mean, the nice piece of pork McConnell got for ditching the Sequester might indicate his true feelings on the issue?
      Say not so!

Comments are closed.