The Real Clear Podcast with Dr Lucas Klein is the in-depth analysis and commentary on current political events through a psychological lens. The Real Clear podcast covers a wide range of topics, from the latest election results to policy debates, to exploring the impact of current events on the political landscape.
Welcome back, folks. It is September 13th 2023. I'm your host, lucas Klein, coming to you, meeting with you auspiciously, as we always do, and we're talking about important things in American society Today. I'm wondering about how we can hold such measurably stupid beliefs one day and then develop an amnestic disorder and have no memory of having held those beliefs in the future. And this goes on both sides of the political spectrum. It's easier to identify them on the left at present, but they're on the right everywhere as well. Okay, let's start on the right. By the way, president Trump seems to believe that a global trade war is a good idea. All conservative economists believe that that is a stupid idea, and it is a fact that the last president to do this was Herbert Hoover in 1930, with the Smoot-Howley-Terra fact, and that was a sweeping border tax, according to the Wall Street Journal, which triggered a global retaliation that shrank world trade and contributed to what became the Great Depression and the Republican Party. They didn't recover for 50 years in terms of economic management, until, really, ronald Reagan. Okay, so the risk for the US economy, by the way, in 2024, the journal continues is that you won't have anyone running for president who actually understands these issues. By the way, president Biden continued the Trump trade tariffs. So if you're a pro-Trump on the global trade war, then I guess you're a Biden supporter. Pretty strange, huh. And it also adds a hefty ransom on to the American consumer, because who do you think pays for the trade tariffs? Do you think that these countries are simply going to say, okay, we'll reduce our prices to accommodate the tariffs? No, it makes your consumer product more expensive, either at the cash register or on the online click. So that's kind of an odd perception to have as to how the United States can proceed to engage with other countries. By the way, when you have trade tariffs on your allies, it makes it harder to unify together against the actual threat for economic trade, which is China. And so Trump doesn't make a lot of sense here. But you can't really talk about these things with his supporters, because everything Trump has identified is good and everything non-Trump has identified is bad. But remember, trump and Biden have the same trade tariff policies, okay. So how do you figure that out? Okay, if we go on down the road, does anyone really believe that it's a good idea to have abortions at six weeks only and have a stopgap there? Most women don't even know if they're pregnant within six weeks. And in the same fell swoop, again, if you're religious, I understand. I'm not trying to say that you should agree that abortion is a good thing. I don't think it's a good thing. But how can you be anti-welfare, want to pare down our means-tested welfare programs throughout the country and then skyrocket the amount of unwanted births and single motherhood? Those two positions are antithetical. They can't be held simultaneously. If you skyrocket the amount of people who are going to have unwanted children, you're going to skyrocket the amount of people who are going to rely on welfare. That's reality. So how do we hold these positions without recognizing these reasonable analyses as I'm stating them? Do you really think you can deport 14 million youths or dreamers or illegal immigrants? It's more like 30, really, you really think you can round up and deport them within the current system that we have? Maybe you can make the case that we should refine the system and then get to the deportation, but is that even feasible? People who've been there hear their whole lives. I'm not so sure it's pragmatic. This is more of an ethical vanguard that conservatives are taking. I understand it. The country has a major illegal immigration problem right now. I understand the impulse to say you know, let's draw a hard line, but can we also be pragmatic? The left has pretty crazy positions all the way around these days. Race and equity is obviously not in touch with reality. For example, I believe it's United Airlines wants to have a quota of 50% of its female or pilus female or minority I believe it's 50% female, and that's, as opposed to just competent hiring, right. So this creates an ethical problem. Say, you have 49 women already hired and they've got top marks, and then the last remaining space out of 100 has to go to a woman. Well, what if, hypothetically, the two remaining candidates for that one spot is one woman with mediocre scores? Just for the sake of argument on competence flying competence versus a man who has superior scores measurably I guess you have to hire the person who is less measurably competent to be a pilot. Do you see the ethical problem of quotas? So it's a pretty stupid position and I think anyone sitting in an airplane seat would agree with me. Okay, defund. The police was obviously dumb In 2020, everyone went insane. I mean that literally, they were not properly assessing reality. That's a social diagnosis. If you look at stories now, like the vice chair of the Democrat Party in Minnesota. She's now out on a war path to amplify police presence and is very angry that crime is out of control. She was just bludgeoned in her driveway and given a broken leg and a contused head. Well, in 2020, she was present in public decrying the defunding of the police and rather obnoxiously in my opinion claiming that we should dismantle the police force and so forth. Okay, so there it is the migrant issue. Mayor Eric Adams in New York City just last year just several months ago was holding political stunts where he's sleeping over in migrant shelters and holding his arms open like he's some sort of a welcoming figure with compassion, unlike the rest of us Right now. What's his tune? Well, he's saying New York City may be destroyed by the illegal immigration crisis, as we all know it will be, and he's also saying the city has actual limits as to what it can deal with. He's also saying that we should do something serious at the border because it poses a threat to American safety, which, of course, it does. If you don't know who's coming over, okay, the next thing is anybody really going to take the position that an ailing man at 80 years old is going to run for a second term when he can barely walk across a lawn? Okay, look, I know people on the right talk about this far too much perhaps, but maybe they talk about it just enough. Biden is clearly, visibly in public, deteriorating before our eyes. I don't think you need to be a political pundit to talk about this. I don't think you need to be right wing to acknowledge this. The man walked out of the Medal of Honor ceremony. Did you watch that? He literally put the medal around the recipient's neck and then he haplessly walked out of the ceremony in the middle of the aisle, almost looking like he was lost. Now they made up the story that because Jill Biden was sick, he had to leave. Don't you think his manner of leaving was a little odd? He didn't say anything to anybody, he didn't make a statement that he had to go. He didn't stand there congratulatory to the recipient. He just literally walked off the stage and left. So strange. The man is deteriorating in front of our eyes and so people are going to deny that. That's the case now and then, if he's elected in four years, when he is totally non-composmentist, he is going to be looked at as absurd by the people who wanted to elect him for a second term. Okay, this is happening over and over and over. The crazy positions that then are flipped on. Gender is obviously one of the most hot button talk bits in America right now. In California we have AB 957 that just passed the California Senate and the Congress and it's going to be signed by Gavin Newsom, I imagine, soon. And what is this law demand? It demands that judges include in their rulings on custody battles whether a parent is gender affirming. Okay, folks, we've left earth, we're somewhere beyond Mars, we're going towards Pluto. The idea that the government should have any bearing on how you relate to your child's personality development that's what gender is, by the way, it's personality. That is absurd. We all know that this is problematic, but you've got a state of 37 million people maybe 40 million at this point who, clearly, based on their representatives, don't understand the pragmatic problems here. So forget about the lunacy of the basic position for a second. How do you, even immeasurably, go about that? What is gender affirming? Is it a statement from the parent? Is it an affidavit signed? What is it? Is it allowing the child to play with opposite sex toys? Oh, I should have said opposite sex. That means I believe in a binary. Oh, slap me, that was article 3. What is it? No one can measurably define that. It's a totally absurd thing to put on a state measure, and yet California's doing it. If you look at what's going on with the I in the country again, I'm talking about where the left holds ridiculous positions. As you well know, florida has been trying to reverse some of these wrong-headed positions in their state colleges, and Chris Rufo has been making some great strides there in Florida. And the Department of Justice has just opened up an investigation into New College of Florida, according to City Journal, and they are alleging that there is disability discrimination. And so the investigation reading from City Journal here was prompted by a complaint by the ACLU attorney alleging that the college's trustees and administrators violated civil rights by removing gender-neutral signage from bathrooms, defunding DEI and gender studies programs and misgendering the former DEI director and former student who uses ZZR pronouns and other pseudo pronouns. According to the complaint, these actions constitute discrimination based on perceived disability and gender prejudice. Okay, what exactly are they calling a disability there? That's a pretty ironic statement, and so City Journal continues. Rufo continues, quite rightly, to say that if the Department of Justice or of Education, I should say forces New College to reinstate terminated left-wing programs and requires trustees to address women as ZZR and they them. It would mean, in a real sense, the replacement of the government, the system of governance, with a system of ideological rule, and that's certainly true. As I've said before, I think that gender is the new secular soul. It's so removed from reality in terms of the discourse around it that gender is really being related to as though it's some sort of internal soul. Most people don't understand the linguistic slide of hand there because they've been indoctrinated in this since the late 1980s. Okay, so how can we hold all these positions that are so measurably absurd and ethically absurd now? And what will be the position of people in years following, when the results of these absurd policies start to become clear? Will they look back and say not I, I didn't hold those positions. It was others, not me. I was skeptical the whole time. I doubt it. I doubt it. They'll probably justify it and push even further, and then maybe, when everything collapse, we can unify around the collapse. I guess that's where we are, and so for those of you who said that I give you uplifting daily inspiration I'm not sure if today is one of those days. Maybe it is, we'll see. Okay, thanks for tuning in, guys, and I'll talk to you soon.