When Bush (W) was in office, and his ratings had dropped to an all-time low, one of the columnists in “Reason” magazine said, “I think he should stay the course and see if he can get his ratings all the way down to zero.” Altough it’s futile, we can at least wish for the same thing for наш возлюбленный Сталин*–I mean, President Obama. Who knows? If the “Reason” article proves an accurate prediction, he may find his ratings dropping to zero: high unemployment, major recession, falling stock prices, probably inflation too… all we’d need would be a major terrorist attack to send his ratings through the floor. Still, I think it’s highly unlikely that things will get bad enough to provoke such a reaction, because people will put up with almost anything.
The pre-revolutionary Marxists in Russia used to hope that things would get as bad as possible, because they believed that only disaster would make their ideas acceptable as a solution. Unfortunately, we’re in the same boat, only worse: while it would take a disaster to convince folks to change the way the government does business, it’s far more likely that in the face of such a disaster, they will opt for more socialism, rather than more freedom. After all, that’s precisely what they did in 1933: they elected a covert socialist and allowed him essentially dictatorial powers. I will therefore continue to follow the advice of the title song in Mel Brooks’ film version of “The Twelve Chairs“: “Hope for the best, and expect the worst.”
So what is left to do? Adopt a time-tested method of propaganda. Perhaps it would work this time: Капиталисты всех стран, соединяйтесь!**
*/ OUR dear Stalin ** / Capitalists of the word, unite!
/from our Washington correspondent/