Patterico's Pontifications


Glenn Reynolds on Russ Roberts’s “EconTalk” Podcast — Plus, An “Army of Davids” Idea for Changing the Culture

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 3:11 pm

On this deadly newsless Sunday, allow me to put in another plug for Russ Roberts’s “EconTalk” podcast. This time there’s a twist: Russ has interviewed someone you’re all familiar with . . . Glenn Reynolds of Instapundit fame. Listen here.

Glenn is in his element here, talking with a friendly like-minded libertarian about the ways that we can promote freedom in this country. The conversation hits points such as: how intrusive government has become; the fact that it will come to an end due to budgetary reasons, because “something that can’t go on forever won’t”; how a Constitutional Convention might restructure our polity; the idea of a third House of Congress designed to repeal bad laws; the Louis Seidman piece about giving up on the Constitution (Glenn’s reaction to this is priceless and worth the time to listen to); and Glenn’s music career. It’s far reaching and interesting. A great way to spend an hour of your time.

One thought that is occasioned by this comment Glenn made in the podcast:

Culture comes before politics. And politics come before law. So, I think that the culture has to change first.

This is a subject on many people’s minds lately: how can conservatives fight the tide of leftist thought that seems to be washing over the electorate? Prof. Reynolds has written a piece encouraging conservative billionaires to invest in things like women’s magazines, with the thought in mind that we could include the same articles that all the other women’s magazines publish, but instead of every tenth article being about how awesome Barack Obama is, that article could be about, say, how the tax system punishes women — or whether Obama’s White House is giving women equal pay.

Subtle stuff — but it’s pervasive.

A commenter writes to say they like the idea but they are concerned that conservatives will not invest in ventures that are clearly going to lose money (other than throwing money at losers like John McCain or Mitt Romney, of course). The commenter suggests, instead, an “Army of Davids” approach.

Are there folks out there who would be willing to contribute money to buy and operate ladies’ magazines and pop culture websites? My commenter suggests that the kids at College Insurrection could staff it, and could be tasked with coming up with ideas to appeal to young people. Folks like Prof. Jacobson and/or Prof. Reynolds could serve as consultants, and/or sit on a board of directors. My commenter adds: “it might be a place where young conservatives can intern, thus gaining experience in the media and someday increasing the number of conservatives in the media.”

Not a bad idea, huh? I think the key insight is this: we can’t sit around hoping for rich guys with wads of cash to swoop in and fix things for us. If we think the culture is a big issue, let’s do something about it.

I’m going to send this post to Profs. Reynolds and Jacobson and see what they think.

43 Responses to “Glenn Reynolds on Russ Roberts’s “EconTalk” Podcast — Plus, An “Army of Davids” Idea for Changing the Culture”

  1. If you think it’s a good idea, tell them so!

    Patterico (9c670f)

  2. the firstest thing America needs is a competitor to Fox News

    cause right now the market isn’t really working to keep them ones on their toes

    happyfeet (acd614)

  3. Things that make you go “Hmmm”. This would require a certain amount of knowledge of anonymous proxies, computer software to automate things, and insider political information from a local party, something a consultant might be able to gain.

    crosspatch (6adcc9)

  4. One Mo Time. People get the government they deserve. If it’s corrupt, dishonest and wasteful that corruption dishonesty and waste must be what we want. If it wasn’t we wouldn’t elect ’em.

    glenn (647d76)

  5. glenn–did you vote for Barack Obama or Harry Reid or Nancy Pelosi or Hillary Clinton? I did not. Did you vote for Rod Blagojovich or Jesse Jackson Junior? I didn’t. I don’t deserve any of them either.

    elissa (679f61)

  6. Sorry, but this whole thing feels like mice voting to bell the cat. It’s a great idea, but who is going to do it?

    Steven Den Beste (99cfa1)

  7. This strategy is exactly what the “New Left” of the 60’s adopted when they could not influence the New Deal Left directly. The “long march through the institutions.”

    And in the end, they ensconced themselves firmly into academia and the media, and it is going to take another long march to [peacefully] displace them. As things get more and more dire for the college cohorts this is inevitable. And the fossils of that era, propounding their Statist dogma, are going to be bewildered as all their old tricks are brought to bear against hem.

    Kevin M (bf8ad7)

  8. Well, I knew it would come to this, work. We are all Maynard G. Krebs.

    All around me people keep saying the system is about to collapse and yet its a given that we will pick up where we left off culture-wise.

    Somehow I don’t think you’re getting it.

    gary gulrud (dd7d4e)

  9. I’d contribute.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  10. The key is finding a good managing editor. Maybe the PJ Media people know someone.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  11. Neither Instapundit nor Legal Insurrection linked this post on their blogs — but both retweeted it. So I have to think they at least saw it.

    We’ve planted a seed. Some die, some grow.

    Patterico (9c670f)

  12. I know good managing editors. They’re mostly liberal, though.

    Ag80 (b2c81f)

  13. I know good managing editors. They’re mostly liberal, though.

    Funny how that works.

    Patterico (9c670f)

  14. This is sad, but at least more clear cut and obvious if it could be proved:

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  15. That’s a good podcast. I especially liked the Blazing Saddles reference.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  16. And the Constitutional Convention discussion.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  17. A constituionl convention would terrify me.

    JD (b63a52)

  18. What could possibli go wrong?

    narciso (3fec35)

  19. Toward the end of the podcast, Roberts asks Reynolds to respond to the suggestion (to ignore the Constitution) made by Seidman last week — and posted on by Patterico here. Reynolds’ response is priceless.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  20. What time is that, DRJ?

    JD (b63a52)

  21. There isn’t a counter on the podcast, at least not that I see. But put the cursor halfway through and listen for the next 2-3 minutes. I’ll even give away the punch line: “I’m free to do whatever I want.”

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  22. The culture is tied to the schools at every level. I see schools changing a lot, but not in the right direction.

    We are over the tipping point and plunging. Realistically, we need to work to preserve a remnant of western culture. Anything else is tilting at windmills.

    Amphipolis (d3e04f)

  23. The people of Paris sleep in their beds. We have no chance, no chance at all.

    Amphipolis (d3e04f)

  24. I think this is a good read. I don’t think there is any one better at understanding the left mindset than david horowitz, who was among them. You have to know your enemy, and he does.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  25. Sky is falling paused:

    Italian Right may eek out popular vote victory but Left maintains control of Senate.

    My reading, reported some weeks back, of the SOI(Southern Oscillation Index) as being strong toward La Nina was just random noise. She’s banging around in neutral on the La Nina side but no move evident.

    Northern States might just get a respite from drought.

    gary gulrud (dd7d4e)

  26. 21. The sentiment will be an important fulcrum.

    Marx expected the workers to revolt. It’s never quite worked that way.

    Timing is everything and I don’t give the Dhimmis much credit.

    gary gulrud (dd7d4e)

  27. MD—Reading the Horowitz essay you linked was a good way to start the day. Thanks.

    elissa (20ddf6)

  28. 24. Easily the best written, most seminal piece I’ve distractedly scanned at Powerline.

    And no, its not a Christie endorsement.

    gary gulrud (dd7d4e)

  29. “People get the government they deserve. If it’s corrupt, dishonest and wasteful that corruption dishonesty and waste must be what we want. If it wasn’t we wouldn’t elect ‘em.”

    glenn – Putney Swope?

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  30. I have a nitpick with the header “Grueome USA”:

    The ocean backs up thru the sewer pipes, ‘In’ USA is sort of alarmist.

    On the way out, rather.

    gary gulrud (dd7d4e)

  31. Comment by Patterico (9c670f) — 2/24/2013 @ 6:49 pm

    Ten years or so ago, there was a guy at the OCR who was good, and conservative/libertarian, but left in the shakeup following the big fight by the heirs over money.

    askeptic (b8ab92)

  32. Comment by gary gulrud (dd7d4e) — 2/25/2013 @ 9:21 am

    not sure what point you are making about the header

    the heads and hands were found not far from Philly, and the only way I heard about it was by chasing a link from “BlogAds” to Pamela Geller’s Atlas Shrugs website

    she quoted a couple verses from the Koran about attacking the infidel “above the shoulders” and “cutting off all of his fingers”- apparently the murderer thought just doing the whole hand at once was the same

    and they don’t report it, and when they do, some “wonder” if “it has anything to do with religion”-
    that’s like asking if the blood gushing from the neck has anything to do with the mechanism of death

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  33. 32. “point”? I need a point? Thanks for the follow up.

    A nice little background piece substanially commending the practice of law:

    gary gulrud (dd7d4e)

  34. no gary, one doesn’t need a point, but you usually have one and I thought I missed it here

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  35. 34. The point such as it were, was to interject the story with a shameless slam on 1/3 of the Tri-State area, the effluent collection system otherwise known as north NJ.

    gary gulrud (dd7d4e)

  36. Comment by gary gulrud (dd7d4e) — 2/25/2013 @ 11:15 am

    Having grown up in the midwest, my concept of new jersey was like Cleveland and the Cuyahoga river, just enlarged to state size

    but there are actually a lot of pretty areas in new jersey

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  37. 36. Ah, I did say N NJ, got a favorite cousing working at Princeton.

    Today’s feel good story:

    We gots mouths to feed of our own.

    gary gulrud (dd7d4e)

  38. Ah, I did say N NJ,

    Yes, yes you did.

    Actually there is a lot of pretty country in NW NJ. I guess the farther away from NYC one goes the prettier it gets.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  39. MD-GG–We lived in northern Jersey for a few years. (Mendham-Bernardsville areas of Morris County). It is absolutely gorgeous terrain. Small mountains, narrow windey roads loved by sports cars, forest, quaint villages with preserved 225 year old buildings and churches. Pretty nice people, too. When friends came to visit us from Chicago they were astounded at how nice it was.

    elissa (20ddf6)

  40. 38. Ok I stand corrected. 50 miles is 50 miles.

    Standing in for Icy–RIP Evrett Koop, former Surgeon General, Navy man.

    gary gulrud (dd7d4e)

  41. The Dakota’s!

    askeptic (b8ab92)

  42. 42. Here I am faced with the dilemma of hating the enviroNazis(along with other death-cultists) and yet finding anyplace with a human population of say 400 per square mile as by definition not ‘nice’.

    I will certainly endure a sleepless night.

    gary gulrud (dd7d4e)

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