Apparently, I have been kicked off the Volokh Conspiracy, for the crime of being “ungenerous” (in the words of co blogger Orin Kerr) to super Likudnik David Bernstein’s hysterical, knee jerk, substanceless bloviation re the application of an academic boycott of Israel. Folks can check out the thread here,
if they are interested. Kind of amazing that self described “libertarians” would insist on “generosity,” as they are the first to claim “tyranny” if one penny more than can be justified under Ayn Rand’s crackpot theories is taken from them in taxes. Apparently, that does not apply to their own scribblings, which, no matter how stupid and unsupported, must be given more credit than they actually deserve. Funny too that libertarians would use a thread in which they attack academic boycotts as an excuse to insulate themselves from dissenting opinions, like mine!
Today, I attempted to comment in response to this blog post
but was informed that I no longer had “permission” to post there.
Anyway, here, more or less, is what I tried to post:
First of all, JPII did not bring “freedom” to the Poles primarily so that they could institute a free market economy. He did so, primarily, as a matter of restoring religious freedom. And, even at that, it is no coincidence that Poland is a Catholic country. By which I mean the religious freedom that was being restored was, for the most part, the freedom to be a Roman Catholic. And don’t think that that had nothing to do with JPII’s actions. Secondly, if one is looking for auxiliary reasons for JPII’s actions, I think that political freedom/nationalism provide a much better choice than economics. Poles want to govern Poland, and while they don’t perhaps much like police states, they positively hate foreign, especially Russian (or German), imposed police states.
Beyond what JPII was all about, it seems to me there is a lot of daylight between Soviet imposed Polish communism and the tepid, lukewarm social democracy, capitalism with a conscience type economic policy which the quoted material seems to be calling for. And it should also be pointed out that JPII is dead, and that the new pope is not bound to be as much of a capitalist rah rah boy as the guy two popes ago was. The Roman Catholic Church has been around a long time, and one pope, perhaps because of his and his country’s suffering under a foreign imposed police state, chose to stridently oppose not only the economic system of that police state, but anything remotely like it. Well, the new pope doesn’t have that background and is making his choices accordingly. And something tells me that the Church will be around long after the current economic upturn in Poland that you are crowing about is as forgotten as last year’s snow.