Saturday, July 14, 2012

THE GREATEST COMEBACK by Patrick J. Buchanan

In IT'S THE MIDDLE CLASS STUPID! authors James Carville and Stan Greenberg pound home the message that the neglected and beleaguered middle class is going away (and everyone will be either rich or poor) unless the American conversation faces this reality with urgency. The premise is well defended, while the Democratic argument that government spending on public projects will solve the dilemma is less convincing. As the Chinese Century proceeds, NEW ideas are needed...not focus groups, polls, and two party mud-slinging. What we probably need is either total collapse or a space alien to intercede! Short of that, fasten your seat belts for a gazillion campaign ads between endless (and also useless) sports programming. By the way, how do you explain Carville's Alpha male rage (along with the competitive ego/sex drive/sporting-view-of-life characteristic of politicians)? It has to do with testosterone, a hormone that makes men less generous and more willing to punish than women. According to Paul J. Zak in THE MORAL MOLECULE, the brain chemical oxytocin is responsible for making us willing to cooperate with others, and to empathize. And it's reduced by testosterone. Bingo, there's your reason why women are less likely to support wars...or to race up to someone who cut them off in traffic to give them the finger.  Why do many men run for office, and devote most of their time to getting reelected as soon as they get there? A lack of oxytocin makes ego the motivation for cutting opponents off at the knees. And of course if you are Pat Buchanan, whose new book is THE GREATEST COMEBACK (How Richard Nixon Rose From Defeat to Create the New Majority), "winning" is really all that matters, and so testosterone was applied to the war in Vietnam, giving rise to the Moral Majority opposed to those hippies who dared to protest. (Read by Arthur Morey.) An interesting book, although the words "most successful" should be substituted for the word "greatest" in Nixon's case...at least until his ultimate disgrace.

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