Author Topic: Escaping Our Ship of Fools  (Read 359 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Online Bigun

  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 34,205
  • The income tax: Root of all evil!
    • The FairTax Plan
Escaping Our Ship of Fools
« on: February 07, 2019, 10:06:05 AM »
Escaping Our Ship of Fools

By Mark Pulliam February 7, 2019

I generally avoid books written by radio or TV hosts. They are typically slap-dash efforts—often dictated or ghost-written, padded, and calculated to cash in on sales to an uncritical fan base. Accordingly, even though I regularly watch, and enjoy, Tucker Carlson’s Fox News show, Tucker Carlson Tonight, I did not have high expectations for his recent book, Ship of Fools, which I received as a birthday present. Upon reading the book, however, I was favorably surprised by the high quality of Ship of Fools (subtitled, How a Selfish Ruling Class Is Bringing America to the Brink of Revolution), which is engagingly written in his distinctive voice and presents a cogent stream of insights into our present predicament. I was impressed enough to recommend it.

Ships of Fools is selling well (debuting as #1 on the New York Times Best Seller list) for a reason: Carlson offers a fresh perspective on the cultural divide—the ruling class versus ordinary Americans—that characterizes the Age of Trump. Unlike most of his inside-the-Beltway media colleagues, Carlson is an unapologetic populist. Even though he grew up in affluent La Jolla, California, attended an elite boarding school followed by Trinity College, and now lives in uber-Establishment Washington, D.C., Carlson relates to the now-beleaguered American middle class in a way that most conservative intellectuals do not—with empathy rather than condescension or contempt.

In contrast to Charles Murray’s 2012 book Coming Apart, which mines a similar theme, Carlson’s Ship of Fools is not a scholarly work; it is, instead, a rollicking polemic, albeit one directed at a well-informed reader. The book has no footnotes, index, appendix, or bibliography. Yet this slim (241 pages of text), well-researched volume explains the election of Donald Trump (“a throbbing middle finger in the face of America’s ruling class…, a howl of rage”) and the decades of feckless leadership—by “lawmakers, journalists, and business chieftains”—that led up to it. Carlson’s premise is that since the dawn of the 21st century an ad hoc coalition of elites, on both sides of the aisle, have sabotaged America’s middle class through a combination of free trade, mass immigration (legal and illegal), and growing economic stratification in the form of income inequality and corporate concentration...

By 2016, America’s bourgeoisie had grown tired of being ignored—or worse, discarded as useless. Trump campaigned for their votes in the heartland, and got them. Carlson argues that the political struggle today is no longer ideological—left versus right—but “between those who benefit from the status quo, and those who don’t.” He notes that this divide is “rarely acknowledged in public, which is convenient for those who are benefiting.” The book’s overarching metaphor is that our leaders “are fools, unaware that they are captains of a sinking ship.” The out-of-touch elites depicted on Ship of Fool’s cover—haplessly guiding the vessel over a waterfall—include tech moguls Jeff Bezos and Mark Zuckerberg, the Clintons, Mitch McConnell, and Nancy Pelosi—all equally oblivious to the fate of the passengers...

In the seven substantive chapters of Ship of Fools, Carlson skewers a host of deserving targets, including Silicon Valley plutocrats, “gig economy” groupies, the Clinton Dynasty, open borders apologists, neoconservatives (Max Boot and Bill Kristol in particular), the censors and intolerant authoritarians running our elite institutions (e.g., Google, higher education, cable media), the diversity bureaucracy and its postmodern religion of identity politics, Ta-Nehisi Coates, new wave feminists, the transgender movement, faux environmentalists who fly to climate change summits on private jets, and many more. Carlson’s take-downs are bracing and often wickedly funny. I have to admit that I read many passages in Ship of Fools with a smile on my face.

But Carlson has a serious point: How should the nation’s various maladies be addressed by our political system? Whose interests should the ruling class promote? Carlson believes in democracy, and contends that the public is entitled to be dissatisfied at the way the country is being run, including economic policies that disfavor family formation. Carlson is a champion of populism. The epilogue to Ship of Fools contains this pungent passage: 

A relatively small number of people

https://www.lawliberty.org/2019/02/07/escaping-our-ship-of-fools-tucker-carlson-populism-elites/

Mark Pulliam is a friend, fellow Texan, and a regular contributor to Law and Liberty which I find to be a VERY worthy site.


Online skeeter

  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 13,207
Re: Escaping Our Ship of Fools
« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2019, 10:28:37 AM »
After thirty or forty years of watching Washington DC operate I've come to agree completely with Carlson's POV.

I want no help from government. I'd be happy if they'd just stop ^%$ my life up.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2019, 10:31:05 AM by skeeter »

Online Bigun

  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 34,205
  • The income tax: Root of all evil!
    • The FairTax Plan
Re: Escaping Our Ship of Fools
« Reply #2 on: February 07, 2019, 10:56:02 AM »
After thirty or forty years of watching Washington DC operate I've come to agree completely with Carlson's POV.

I want no help from government. I'd be happy if they'd just stop ^%$ my life up.

 :amen:  :amen: and  :amen: again!

I've been on that boat since I was 20!  Now 70 and nothing much has changed!

Offline EdJames

  • Possible TrumpRealist
  • Cat Mod
  • ****
  • Posts: 2,337
Re: Escaping Our Ship of Fools
« Reply #3 on: February 07, 2019, 11:22:57 AM »
Thanks for posting.

Well worth clicking through to read the whole article!

Online Bigun

  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 34,205
  • The income tax: Root of all evil!
    • The FairTax Plan
Re: Escaping Our Ship of Fools
« Reply #4 on: February 07, 2019, 11:27:40 AM »
Thanks for posting.

Well worth clicking through to read the whole article!


Yes indeed @EdJames! And a subscription to Law and Liberty isn't a bad idea either!

Offline EdJames

  • Possible TrumpRealist
  • Cat Mod
  • ****
  • Posts: 2,337
Re: Escaping Our Ship of Fools
« Reply #5 on: February 07, 2019, 11:31:52 AM »
Good idea!  I think I will do just that!

Offline Fishrrman

  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 19,369
    • Fishrrman Speaks!
Re: Escaping Our Ship of Fools
« Reply #6 on: February 07, 2019, 08:58:01 PM »
There isn't going to be "an escape".

There's going to be a breakup of the country.
If it's not a peaceful breakup, there will be a second civil war as a result.

I expect this to happen by 2050, if not earlier.
I won't be here, and I'll reckon that most of the folks reading this won't be, either.

But... what's coming is coming.

There's no chance for a "national reconciliation" now, any more than there was a chance for it in 1840, 1850, or 1860. What was going to happen then, happened.

And what's going to happen this time... well, it's gonna happen.

Show me where my reasoning is wrong.


Share me

Digg  Facebook  SlashDot  Delicious  Technorati  Twitter  Google  Yahoo
Smf