Mandeville, LA - Exclusive Audio and Transcript - When I hear you say “They can’t come home. Get out. Who is this freeloader here?” Maybe he’s not really a freeloader. Maybe you’re looking at the glass the wrong way. Maybe the natural tendency always was to go home. Maybe the natural conservative leaning is that we have homes and a housing market so that homes are not investment, homes are where families are raised. If it’s 20 or if it’s three, what difference does it make? It’s the familial unit and the concept of family that, I think, takes the backseat to ramblings about economics and housing markets and how we need to status-tize it, keep track of it. To me, it’s antithetical to the traditional conservative view of things. Check out today's audio and transcript for more...
Begin Mike Church Show Transcript
Mike: You originally called about this: (audio clip of Fox and Friends). Yes, that’s bad for the housing market. You had a comment on that.
Caller Kevin: Yeah. I’ve actually been on hold for quite a while and my blood pressure had settled. Now you’ve got me all riled up again by playing that.
Mike: That’s what we do.
Caller Kevin: The part of the argument or story that you were talking about, about it being this terrible thing for the housing market, I’ll grant you that’s kind of a stupid statement. The housing market has thoroughly been trashed over the last four years by granting people who had no credit, bad credit and no down payment and no ability to pay the mortgage, mortgages. That’s beside the point. What I’m calling about is the lack of self-reliance and independence of these late-20-something and 30-something people for even having the ability to put in their brain to move back in with their parents. That, to me, is pathetic and shows that you don’t have -- evidently this generation was not taught when times get tough, you get a second job, a third job, do whatever. Move in with four single people your own age. This whole perception that it’s okay to move back in with mom and dad, I find that thoroughly insulting and pathetic. I blame the parents for even allowing it.
Mike: I got to tell you, Kevin, that’s not a very tradcon, paleocon thing to say, bro.
Caller Kevin: Why?
Mike: AG, how does that go?
AG: That’s a clown question, bro.
Mike: That’s a clown question, bro. The family unit is not there to render support throughout the lifetime? Once you reach 18, that’s it, get your ass out, don’t ever come home?
Caller Kevin: No, no, no. My family lends its support in lots of ways, but my parents are almost 80 years old. If I lost my job tomorrow, my thought process would be last resort to move in with my 80-year-old parents. I just find at 44 years old, I would need to, I don’t care if it’s move in with friends or whatever, but to move in with my 80-year-old parents shows a lack of self-reliance and independence.
Mike: I’m going to demonstrate to you that you’re basically quoting, you’re channeling your inner Karl Marx, Kevin. You’re not doing it intentionally. You’re doing it because you’ve listened to a lot of talk radio and you’ve read a lot of bad stuff. I’m going to read to you from this piece I was talking earlier, this essay by Russell Kirk, as he was writing about the humane economics or the humane economy of the great Wilhelm Roepke. I’m only going to delve into one paragraph. Listen to this and then we’ll hash it out.
That highly speculative division of knowledge, which our age calls “economics,” took shape in the 18th century as an instrument for attaining individual freedom, as well as increased efficiency of production. But many 20th century teachers and specialists in economics became converts to a neo-Jacobinism. (Burke defines Jacobinism as “the revolt of the enterprising talents of a nation against its property.”) Such doctrines of confidence in the omnicompetence of the state in economic concerns came to predominate in state polytechnic institutes [Mike: Louisiana Tech and Maryland Tech, what have you] and state universities especially. Quite as 18th century optimism, materialism, and humanitarianism were fitted by Marx into a system that might have surprised a good many of the philosophes, so 19th century utilitarian and Manchesterian concepts were the ancestors (perhaps with a bend sinister) of mechanistic social planning. The old Jacobins scarcely realized that their centralizing tendencies were imitative of the policies of the “old regime”; so it is not surprising that recent humanitarian and collectivistic thinkers forget their debt to [Marx and his buddies.] Yet the abstractions of Marx, reducing human being to social atoms, are the principal source of modern designs for social alteration by fiat.
Mike: Now that’s a lot of big words. If you don’t have the knowledge of someone of the brain of Russell Kirk -- I can interpret this because I’ve heard someone do it. What he’s basically saying is that we were told and taught, and Marx was one of the guys that was a big proponent of this, to be autonomous, and somebody described it the other day to me as being radically autonomous, to the point that as soon as you are able to be autonomous, then you are, and anything that gets in the way of that is bad. Families get in the way of that. Children get in the way of that. Familial and home life, rural existence gets in the way of that. That is part of what once made such great people that we call Americans, and of the founding generation, and of the 200 years before the founding, and I’d say about 120 years after the founding.
Something has been lost there, Kevin. When I hear you say, [mocking] “They can’t come home. Get out. Who is this freeloader here?” Maybe he’s not really a freeloader. Maybe you’re looking at the glass the wrong way. Maybe the natural tendency always was to go home. Maybe the natural conservative leaning is that we have homes and a housing market so that homes are not investment, homes are where families are raised. If it’s 20 or if it’s three, what difference does it make? It’s the familial unit and the concept of family that, I think, takes the backseat to ramblings about economics and housing markets and how we need to status-tize it, keep track of it. To me, it’s antithetical to the traditional conservative view of things. That doesn’t mean that we’re going to readopt it here, but I think reading Kirk, and Kirk only wrote this 20 years ago, that reading Kirk and applying it to today at least ought to challenge our thinking and challenge us to stop putting everything in dollars and cents in economic terms. I’ll give you the final word.
Caller Kevin: I can’t be called a Marxist. That hurt my feelings and destroyed my self-worth.
Mike: I’m not calling you a Marxist.
Caller Kevin: If I lose my job or if I hit financial hardships, I’m calling my parents and I’m moving back home.
Mike: You could. I don’t think you should be --
Caller Kevin: If I don’t do that, I’m a Marxist. If I try to stay on my own, which I’ve been my whole life, I guess I thought that was hard work and self-worth and self-reliance.
Mike: Oh, Kevin, cry me a river. I wasn’t calling you a Marxist. I was saying that you have been conditioned to say things that would be very pleasing to the Marxists, not that you are a Marxist. Of course you would never sanction the state control of the means of production, would you?
Caller Kevin: Hell no, but neither will I ever move back home with my mom and dad. Bottom line is I don’t get that whole mindset. I watch some of these news programs where these married kids with kids of their own are moving back with their mom and dad so that they can save up a down payment for a house.
Mike: What’s wrong with that? What in dude’s holy name is wrong with that? Kevin, I got to move on. I appreciate the call. I fail to see where the downside to that is. I don’t know. Maybe I’ve been reading too much Russell Kirk.
End Mike Church Show Transcript