Enthusiasm on the Left: Like a Bubble About to BurstPosted: January 19, 2014
Michael Goodwin writes: Thanks to the recession, we all know about financial bubbles and the damage they cause. But are there such things as political bubbles? I say yes, and believe America is in the midst of one now.
The idea grows out of a book that dissects a financial bubble that popped nearly 300 years ago. In “The Great Mirror of Folly: Finance, Culture and the Crash of 1720,” three Yale professors recount how stocks in France, Britain and the Netherlands soared by 1,000 percent, then crashed.
The authors, according to a Wall Street Journal article, don’t accuse investors of being irrational. They included Isaac Newton and believed new corporate structures would protect them and that trade with the New World marked a global transformation.
In the long run, they were right. But caught up in market mania and blind faith in momentum, they dramatically overpaid for stocks.
That is common bubble behavior, but a similar mania can happen in political movements and turn them into bubbles, too.
For example, one of the book’s authors told the Journal that a clear sign of a market bubble is when investors discount all evidence that doesn’t fit their belief.
He called that a “hinge point” that leads investors to a “binary framework where anybody who disagrees with them is demonized.”
That perfectly describes the cult of Barack Obama and the bubble of liberalism he embodies.
They are built on blind faith in his personal exceptionalism, discount facts and are sustained by a demonization of doubters.
Indeed, Obama’s career is something of a faith-based movement.
Despite his lack of experience and record, he was elected on the promise that he could get government to do what it had never done before. He shaped and benefitted from a belief that this time was different, that the old rules didn’t apply.
“We are the ones we’ve been waiting for,” he said in promising a unique period in history. “We are the change that we seek.”
He persuaded enough people to buy his stock that, in hindsight, its momentum carried him beyond any reasonable explanation. That bubble is still expanding but only within the Democratic Party. Case in point is the election of far-left Mayor Bill de Blasio and Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito in New York.
A recent Clarus survey on ideological trends finds that 43 percent of Democrats now self-identify as liberal, up from 29 percent in 2000. Meanwhile, Dems who call themselves moderate declined by 8 points, from 44 percent to 36.
Based on the failure of Obama’s key policies, that rapid shift to the left isn’t rational.
Slow economic growth, high underemployment, rising national debt, bitter polarization at home and spreading global disorder show that the faith in liberalism far exceeds its actual performance…
- Student Loans: A Financial Bubble in the Making? (dailyfinance.com)
- When Does A Bubble Spell Trouble? (blogs.wsj.com)
- Enthusiasm on the left is like a bubble about to burst (nalert.blogspot.com)
- Stock Bubbles- when, why and how? (shazasherin.wordpress.com)