How is she voting?

Taylor Swift broke her political silence and endorsed someone for the US Senate. Could this backfire on the candidate? Does she know he would have supported Kavanaugh for Supreme Court? Do you care?

The world passed a tipping point recently. No, not on climate change. I’m talking about the percentage of the world population that is middle class or better off. This is good news courtesy of…well, can you guess which economic system?

Mentioned links:

SHAKE IT OFF: Taylor Swift Gets Political — But Endorses Democrat Who SUPPORTED Kavanaugh

A global tipping point: Half the world is now middle class or wealthier

Bono: “Capitalism takes more people out of poverty than aid”

Nearly half of Democrats, a quarter of Republican millennials identify as socialists

Brett Kavanaugh makes Supreme Court history. Then CNN political analyst accuses him of ‘pandering.’

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Show transcript

I’m not going to go deep into the issues brought up in the final leg of the Kavanaugh confirmation. I just want to say two things; one thing mine and one thing from a friend. For me, I’m shocked and saddened that politics played such a role in how so many decided for themselves what was true and what was false. I have seen pundits and friends decide that Ford was absolutely truthful and Kavanaugh was absolutely lying when they’d never make such a snap decision if either the parties were reversed or if the accused was themselves or their own family or friend. It would have absolutely never happened in that situation, and that’s a very good measure by which we should all judge our own reactions to anything.

The other thing I want to say is from a friend, Robert Barnes. He posted this on Facebook near the time the vote was going to happen, “A thought for men… Right now the country is embroiled in a great political/social/moral debate over Brett Kavanaugh. In the end none of us know for certain what he did and didn’t do and none of us will be voting on his nomination. That said, if you want to do more than virtue signal here’s a thought. Treat the women you meet with respect (which doesn’t mean you have to always agree with them) and if you are married treat your wife as an equal partner.” Good words, Bob. I would add that Mike Pence’s rule about never being alone with a woman other than your wife is continually being shown to be a good idea.

Well, now that singer Taylor Swift has made her election choice known, we can all sleep a little bit easier. I’m sure we were all on pins and needles waiting for her endorsement, so now we can all exhale.

Swift endorsed former Tennessee governor Phil Bredesen for a Tennessee Senate seat, saying of incumbent Marsha Blackburn, “Her voting record in Congress appalls and terrifies me.”

So far, there’s been no word about how Taylor has handled the knowledge that Bredesen would have voted for the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh. I have a feeling that whole sordid tale has been dumped in the memory hole very quickly.

The problem for Bredesen is this; how will he handle it if he disappoints Taylor Swift at some point in the future, and he winds up as the topic of a Top 40 break-up song? That could be embarrassing.

At the Brookings Institute, a very interesting tipping point was discovered. By their estimates, just over 50 percent of the world’s population lives in households with enough discretionary cash to be considered “middle class” or “rich.” About the same number of people are living in households that are poor or vulnerable to poverty. For the first time ever, the poor and vulnerable will no longer be a majority in the world.

Now, they acknowledge that what constitutes “middle class” is something of a moving target depending on whenever and wherever you happen to be, but regardless, things are certainly looking up. What the study, linked to in the show notes, does not tackle is why this is happening. But I’d like to take a shot at that.

Back in episode 53, about 5 years ago, I highlighted an article about the singer Bono of U2, who has also been a big charitable giver and organizer to try to end poverty. The article notes something of a change in his attitudes between 2007 and 2013. In 2007, he was saying that foreign aid was effective at ending poverty. But by 2013, his theory on the best method to do that had been, shall we say, clarified. This is what he said, “Aid is just a stopgap. Commerce, entrepreneurial capitalism takes more people out of poverty than aid.” He’s speaking from the perspective of having followed this issue very closely and see what worked and what didn’t.

And this has been happening while some polls now show that almost half of Democrats and nearly a quarter of Republicans between the ages of 22-37 claim they are a socialist or a democratic socialist. My concern is that they are listening to the siren song of so-called “fairness” and soundbites that can fit into a tweet rather than taking the time to actually see what’s going on. It’s places like Venezuela that are bucking this trend and sending people back into poverty, while politicians like Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez continue to hold up this failed system as somehow the economic savior of the world.

We need to get the word out. Republicans shouldn’t just show how bad socialism has performed but how well capitalism has been doing exactly what these socialists claim to want; eliminate poverty. Capitalism isn’t perfect – no economic system used by fallible humans will ever be – but there are certainly various degrees of success…and failure. We don’t need to get into the weeds of economic theory. All we need to show is what’s actually happening. And the examples are rather lopsided.

If you want to fight poverty, take a look around and see how it’s actually being done.

And finally, one more Brett Kavanaugh story, or actually a reaction to a Kavanaugh story. He hired 4 clerks, all of them women, one of them black. In the history of the Supreme Court, no justice has ever hired 4 woman clerks, and as someone noticed, he’s already hired the same number of black clerks as Ruth Bader Ginsburg has in her entire tenure on the court. Of course, CNN political analyst Joan Walsh, who writes for the liberal magazine The Nation, called it “pandering”. Once again, for the Left, it’s all – it’s only – about politics.

Filed under: CapitalismEconomics & TaxesPartisanship