Dangerous Academia

Who was our biggest enemy?

Hitler?  Stalin?  Mao?  Castro?  Idi Amin?  Gaddafi?  Ayatollah Khomeini?  Saddam Hussein?  Bin Laden?  Kim Jong Un?

So many enemies, eh?  What could we possibly have done to warrant so many?

Alas, none of these illustrious men fits the bill.

Our biggest enemy has always been right here at home residing in the Ivory Tower.

That’s right, our biggest enemy are the home-grown terrorists in our nation’s universities.

For over 90 years now, these academics and their disciples have worked tirelessly around the clock to screw up the economy and the welfare of the nation.

I suppose craziness must occur at least once in your lifetime. If you’re lucky, it can occur twice.  In the case of my mother, who is 94, it can occur three times.

The first craziness occurred in the administration of Franklin Delano Roosevelt. While Roosevelt did many good things, listening to crackpot academics was not one of them. These nutters convinced FDR that the problem in the Great Depression was not fear but low prices.  

According to the crackpots, since low prices decreased the revenue for the shopkeeper that in turn forced him to let go of employees, why then the solution must be to raise prices.

If only prices could be elevated, why then the shopkeeper would have enough revenue to employ his workers.  These employed people would then have the money to buy things.

That sounds good on paper; unfortunately, the game is not played on paper.

Shopkeepers were lowering their prices because people were hoarding their money.  People were hoarding their money because they were scared. Creating artificial shortages, which was what Roosevelt did after listening to the crackpots, didn’t alleviate the fear; it increased fear because prices rose.  Thus people bought less.

What transpired was a quagmiring of the Depression brought about by playing the game on paper.

When you play the game on paper, it’s a snap to conclude that you can reverse the engine by simply raising prices.  

Yet, it’s nonsense, because fear is the dog, and price is the tail.

The tail doesn’t wag the dog; the dog wags the tail.

Fear and confidence together are the defining context of the economy.  Prices rise and fall within that context.

The second craziness came about with Robert McNamara’s prosecution of the Vietnam war.  Although McNamara wasn’t technically an academic, he sure acted like one.

McNamara’s contribution to insanity was to fight a war with statistics.  Increasing body count was one of his principal goals.  Winning battles was another.  Apparently Bob never heard of a pyrrhic victory.

Just show me the bodies, Jerry!

Show me the bodies!

That nutty philosophy led to racking up numbers in order to win the war. 

What McNamara must have concluded was that since winners of wars generally win more battles and kill more people, it must necessarily follow that  greater body counts and more victories will result in a successful war.  

That looks great on paper, right?  

Not so fast, Bob. Successful wars are prosecuted in an organic manner by generals who apply realistic strategies that involve tactics other than killing.  A customary but not mandatory byproduct of that realistic prosecution is a greater body count and more battles won.  The war must still be fought realistically.  Plus the goal of war is to sell people to your way of thinking; if the general can accomplish this without killing, then the general will do so.

Because we did not follow that time-honored advice, we won the battles and killed millions but ultimately lost the war –  a war that was protracted because we eschewed the sensible and realistic course of action.

Again the dog wags the tail; the tail does not wag the dog.

Nice going, Bob.

This leads us to the third craziness. It does so because the spirit of Robert McNamara lives on. Oh, yes, he has so many disciples in government today.  Healthcare is chock full of them; and they stand ready with their metrics to save you from reality.

This third craziness is rooted in lowering the R0 value.

Like McNamara, Gates and Fauci are fixated on numbers and statistics, only in this case it’s a lower body count and a lower R0 value.  Indeed, lowering the R0 value is the holy grail for Gates and Fauci.  It is the basis for the lockdown. Now, of course, if you have read any of my writings before, you know that the lockdown, otherwise known as extreme social distancing, has never been tried out in the real world until now. That’s right, you’re a guinea pig.

Here Gates and Fauci are fighting the coronavirus war.  Since successful wars against viruses generally result in lower R0 values, it must necessarily follow that lowering the R0 value will result in a successful war. 

Again we have people playing the game on paper, not understanding that the tail does not wag the dog. 

In the real world successful, virus wars are won because people become infected naturally or through vaccination.  A consequence of this is a lowering of the R0 value.  In the paper world, R0 values are lowered first by locking people up in their houses.  The problem with this approach is that someday these coronavirus virgins must come out of the house.  And when they do, the R0 value will rise and more people will die.  

 Essentially Gates and Fauci have prolonged the battle. They have kicked the can down the road. They have accomplished nothing.

As did McNamara; as did FDR’s crackpot economists.

 

Archer Crosley, MD

McAllen, TX

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

 

Copyright 2020   Archer Crosley   All Rights Reserved

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