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Posts Tagged ‘P.J. O’Rourkes’

(VIDEO at the end of the post)

Here comes a blog post in english, which I know many have been wating for. I wanted to share an interview with you. The first part is about the auto-mobile industry, and P.J. O’Rourkes latest book: Driving Like Crazy: 30 Years of Vehicular Hell-Bending. This part I did not text.

However, I texted down the last part of the interview, if any of you need some good quotes.

You should all watch the whole interview though. Reason.tv’s Ted Balaker sat down with O’Rourke at the Peterson Automotive Museum in Los Angeles, and the topics include: bailouts, who ruined the U.S. auto industry, politicians’ love affair with trains, how easy women made O’Rourke a youthful socialist and how getting a paycheck turned him into a libertarian.

Heres the last part of the interview – I guarantee a good laugh (if you’ve got humor). I just loved it:

Ted Balaker:
Can you talk a bit about your ideological journey. You started off with very different beliefs than you have now.

P.J. O’Rourke:
I started out on the left because I was a kid, and it was the 60’s, and the girls on the left would do it. It was that simple really.

What republicans have to do is have more sex. And then you know… Palin is a step in the right directions. Obviously the Palin family has a fair amount of sex, not quite as much as David Letterman thinks they do, but you know, nontheless.

I remember in my freshman year…. I was walkin down an alley. First weekend at college, my freshman year. I’m walkin down an alley, and there’s bars on two sides of this alley. One bar is filled with all this sort of like – sorority and futurnity types. Good looking kids! Beautiful girls. And all dressed up really nicely… And having fun… And looking quite attractive. But I’m thinking: I’m not good looking, and… I’m not an athlete, and I can’t afford a futurnity. I’m not getting in there.

And on the other side of the alley, theres this bar called Mack & Joes, and over there there are equally attractive girls. These girls who iron their hair, and they’re playing Kumbaya on their guitar, and they’re smoking lucky strikes… and drinking beer out of the bottle. And I’m thinking: Those girls are very cute too, and I BET THEY’LL DO IT.

…I persisted in my marxism til I was 22 or 23, and I GOT A JOB… I’m a leftist. I’m a socialist. I’m for sharing everything. I get a job as a messenger in New York. $150 a week – I get paid every two weeks. I’m really looking forward to that 300 bucks, REALLY looking forward to it. And so is my landlord. This is more money than I’ve had in my hands in a long time. I get my pay check, and I net out at like $185,93 – after federal tax and state tax and city tax and social security contribution and retirement which I was «really interested in» at that age. And the health care benefits and all this stuff, and I net out at about $180 something.

…and I go: wait a minute, I’ve been a socialist for all these years. I’ve been screamin for socialism, yellin for socialism, demonstratin for soscialism, and I discovered: WE HAVE SOCIALISM!!! They just took half my pay! I’m not Rockefeller, and they’re taking half my pay!!!

That was the end of that.

Ted Balaker:
Thats what it takes, haha, the journey from easy sex to pay checks.

P.J. O’Rourke:
From easy sex to pay checks

Ted Balaker:
When you were in the early years of your career, you were sort of in the midst of a rightward turn in the nation. Do you think thats over now?

P.J. O’Rourke:
Ehm…… yes….. ehm…, the public tends to vibrate between…. the public loves freedom, AND it loves getting things for free. You know, this is only human. And so politically, the public has a tendency to vibrate between the benefits of freedom – that would be Reagan, and gettin things for free – that would be Obama.

And so they go back and forth, and after they get things for free for a while they realize there actually is a price attached to the stuff they’re getting for free. And the price can be quite high. The price can be like livin under the Carter administration. So they go: ahlright, ahlright… we realize there’s no free lunch, and so we go for freedom itself

…AND then they find out that freedom itself has a certein price called responsibility – you’re supposed to take care of yourself, you’re supposed to take care of your own problems. Well, everybody hates solving their own problems, and along comes somebody that says: «Hey! Free problem solving over here», you know, and they go back to… (all over again) After all, if human beings… had a capacity to learn these lessons easily, a poncy-scheme would’ve only worked once – with mr. Poncy (Poncy-scheme is an expression named after an Italian Immigrant to the States, Carlo Ponzi conned a lot of people by promising great returns on investments, which were actually paid out by new money coming in to his scheme, and not out of any real business)but, heres mr. Madoff (another con). It workes over and over again.

Ted Balaker:
And social security…

P.J. O’Rourke:
Haha, and social security – the largest Poncy-scheme ever, yeah…

Ted Balaker:
You’re one of the most quotable guys around, and one quote that I attribute to you, or have for a long time is something to the effect of: «the job of a president is to stand around for four years, and take credit for anything good that happens». Is that really… I mean… is this the whole job…

P.J. O’Rourke:
I dont know for sure If I said that, but I am saying it now. Haha…

Ted Balaker:
Okay… ahlright… even republicans do it, democrats do it. Of course Obama is doing it. This job creation hokus pokus – is it really just back to the time when we were primitive tribesmen and we killed the king if we had a bac crop yield, and we praised the king if we had a great harvest?

P.J. O’Rourke:
It isn’t BACK to that time. Its always been that time! I mean, we look to political leadership for all sorts of things that political leadership can’t possibly deliver. And we just bless them, you know I mean, when we had a walkover in the gulf war in 1991, we just couldnt’ve been happier with George Bush, with senior George Bush. He had a 110% approval ratings. Like a month later we go into recession, and then we’re ready to slaughter the guy.

We throw him overboard, in favour of this bozo from Arkansas (talking about Clinton) with the worlds most unpleasant marriage, and roving hands beside, and its… ah god, you go…. and… and you start to realisze that the real job of a conservative, the real job of a libertarian, the real job of people who are in favour of individual freedom and individual responsibility is NOT to back one side or the other side. It is to convince people to… BACK away from politics! Government and politics is there for VERY VERY limited purposes.

Theres just a few things that we need from the political system. We do need rule of law, we do need protection from external enemies, we need protection from each other when we misbehave, which is the rule of law part. AND to some extent… this is always true with governments, no matter how pure libertarian one is you have to realize that the government DOES PROVIDE help to people in catastrophic circumstances. Something like Katrina, in city floods, government is supposed to come and help you bail. There’s no doubt about that. But that’s it for government. They help us in utter catastrophees, when we’re completely incapable of helping ourselves, they defend us from external enemies and they defend us from internal enemies, they’ve got a legal monopoly on deadly force, and that’s it.

And when we start asking them for also: would you make sure our food has no transfats, and my shoes don’t fit, and could you get me a better haircut… you know… couple of things, first place: they’ll say yes, cause they love power – they’re bad people – lets face it: people who go into politics are bad people. Secondly: They’re not gonna do a good job at this stuff, because you cant task an organization with that many doodies, and expect them to do all of them, or even any of them, well. So its self-defeting on a couple of different levels. People will use your request to grab power from you, and they will also do a damned bad job with the power that they,ve grabbed.

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