View Full Version : Another Great Article from Jack Cashill on American Thinker
02-12-2013, 08:55 AM
Jack Cashill is a great writer who make frequent contributions to American Thinker. He in always informative and entertaining with useful and worthwhile knowledge and generally a fun read. Search for his name and enjoy others while you enlighten yourself.
02-12-2013, 02:25 PM
Read that. Didnt enlighten me much. Not really very much information, or usefull or worthwhile knowledge or fun. Pretty much a waste of mac's time aktually. Jack might be able to write an article that interests me (i doubt it) -- but this snippet iz borderline krappy.
02-12-2013, 02:50 PM
Review: "Popes & Bankers,” By Jack Cashill
By Paul Burkhart On December 7, 2010 · 3 Comments · In Books, Politics, Review....
Popes & Bankers: A Cultural History of Credit and Debt, From Aristotle to AIG, Jack Cashill. Thomas Nelson. 272 pages.
Months ago, I wrote about Jack Cashill, a man whose conservative ideals go beyond mere political opinion into blind paranoia. He is an American historian whose favorite topic of writing, it seems, is finding new angles to historical events and creating new and cohesive narratives in which to fit these “fresh” perspectives. (Another name for this process would be revisionist history, but I digress). In Popes & Bankers, Cashill attempts to look at the history of credit and debt from the ancient Hebrews in the Old Testament to the present financial crisis, focusing on the theme of “usury,” the lending of money at fairly high interest rates. He concludes with some historically-informed ideas on how to move forward fiscally and economically in both our personal and political lives.
On the outset, we are given the expectation that this book is merely a historical survey of events, but slowly, over time, you begin seeing that it’s actually a historical apology for conservative economic policies. The book aims to show us that there really is nothing new under the economic sun. Throughout history there have been bubbles, bailouts, credit default swaps, sub-prime loans, lazy poor people and rich people getting hated on. And whenever these things have been in place, the free market has been able to correct itself unless, of course, the government stepped in and tried to do something as well, upon which times there have only been more problems. The book is written in an engaging, snarky prose that is at once high-brow and Everyman. Cashill is very witty and winsome, using sarcasm as a primary mode of communication.
And here’s the thing that was so shocking to me about this book: it is quite successful in all it sets out to accomplish. Popes is very effective, convincing even an extreme skeptic like me (who still thinks he’s crazy) that he has offered a fair assessment of the grand story of credit and debt; and there indeed seems to be very little new today. Further, there is an even larger theme in this book that Cashill begins focusing on more as the modern era reaches his purview: there is a moral dimension of economics, and government attempts at forcing the invisible hand to be more moral have just pushed it further from the morality it seeks to produce.
Now for a few critiques. First, on sources.
The book flows chronologically and is replete with endnotes, but looking at these notes, it appears that Cashill read one book for each of his chapters, thereby making each chapter more like a Sparknotes summary of one book on that particular topic.
This may or may not bother the potential reader, but in the end, Popes & Bankers is not, technically speaking, the most well-researched of books on this topic (nor does it necessarily pretend to be). Secondly, on his arguments. Though he was very successful in convincing me that true conservative (not simply “Republican”) economic policies are better in the long-run, for a libertarian like myself who occasionally flirts with a few liberal ideas, I still walked away from the book uneasy. To be sure, I was intellectually convinced, but something in me still felt a bit “played.” I think this is because of three doubts I have about some key points for Cashill.
First, I wonder if treating ancient and historical ideas about usury as the seed of contemporary economic ideas of borrowing and lending is merely an exercise in convenient false equivalencies. Secondly, several economist have made the case that this economic situation at this time and this place is actually a very unique confluence of many forces in the whole scheme of history, and therefore trying to find historical analogies is pretty futile. Lastly, and most importantly, is there really no more room for economic innovation? Is it possible that new or traditionally “liberal” economic policies that may not have worked in the past may be implemented effectively in new ways today?
In conclusion, if lending has always worked off the same basic principles throughout history, if our current financial struggles are the same as others in the past, and if economics is more science than art and the same ideas that have not worked in the past can never work in any way (no matter how creatively they are attempted), then Cashill’s book is one of the most accurate and accessible of assessments of economic history I know. But, then again, that’s a lot of ifs to overcome; and is it possible that an economically untrained individual with a penchant for propaganda, revisionist history, and overly-simplistic narratives that seem tie up all the loose ends could overcome them? I suppose, but I’ll let you decide for yourself. As for me, I still can’t shake the feeling that key parts of the context, theory, and results were held back from me in this book and I might just have to read a few more books to get the whole story
02-12-2013, 02:55 PM
Just az i suspekted. If i read jack's book (or any of hiz books) i feel sure i would be unhappy -- what with me knowing more about krappynomix than all kathlix put together.
Praps jack kood write a good history book -- do lots of new research fingering throo lots of newly discovered mouldy paper. But then again no -- jack would put hiz bad/wrong spin on it.
I reckon that a good writer/researcher needs attitude. A disinterested writer or prezenter or interviewer iz probly worse than useless -- an ignorant time waster. No, giv me someone with attitude. Without attitude, without an idea or hypothesis, u probly wont get anywhere at all. But badstuff starts with a bad/wrong attitude. Jack probly haz a wrong hypothesis in every area in every way. A hypothesis kan take u somewhere 10 times faster -- but jack's somewhere iz krapp.
02-12-2013, 05:36 PM
No surprise, an anti-religious atheist spill his bile and shows his ignorance at every opportunity. You are full of krap.
02-12-2013, 06:24 PM
No one sez i am full of krap and gets away with it. I am on a wt loss diet and hav lost 14lb since newyear -- i dont hav breakfast -- i hav a banana for lunch -- and i hav a big dinner -- so i aint full of it at all.
I used to be a religious atheist, u know, like the Pope -- yes, i woz a kathlick. But now i am an anti-religious atheist.
I dont show my ignorance at every opportunity and i dont spill my bile. But i am expectorating something terrible -- hav had a bad cold for 2 weeks. One day i had zero voice, the worst laryngitis ever -- it woz at a funeral -- met relativs i havnt ever seen, they hide on their 640,000 acre beef ranch which apparently woz four times az big in the goodoldays, go shopping in a helicopter.
Aktually last time i woz there, in south ozz, 4 weeks ago (the uncle woz still alive then), i drank too much and next day chundered in their loo, so yes i do spill bile -- but it woz a surprize, i dont uzually get that pissed.
02-12-2013, 06:38 PM
PRAPS THE POPE KAN BE ACCEPTED INTO THE CLERGY PROJEKT.
For Immediate Release - The Clergy Project
by The Clergy Project posted on February 12, 2013 08:59PM GMT
Washington DC, Tuesday February 12, 2013
New Employment Readiness Program for Clergy Project Members
The Clergy Project is proud to announce the addition of the Employment Transitional Assistance Grant, thanks to a generous grant from the Stiefel Freethought Foundation.
Todd Stiefel, founder and President of Stiefel Freethought Foundation said, "With this donation, my foundation hopes to help formerly-religious clergy find secular employment. These clergy men and women will no longer have to put the priority of feeding their family above their desire to stop preaching what they no longer believe.” Stiefel continued, "Additionally, this is an investment in the next great leaders of the freethought movement because of the incredible skills such as community building, support, and management that these clergypersons bring with them."
This project will provide crucial support to Clergy Project Members leaving active ministry. The program, offered by RiseSmart will provide 6 months of assistance including, skills assessment, resume prep and connection with a recruiter in their area to help them to find sustainable employment. Dan Barker, President of the Clergy Project board said, "I wish there had been a service like this when I left the ministry in the 1980s. I spent a long time floundering, searching for a way to make a meaningful living as a nonbeliever. Eventually, we all have to solve the problems of life on our own, but just knowing there are resources from sympathetic organizations can be immensely helpful." The program is scheduled to officially begin in March 2013.
About The Clergy Project
The Clergy Project is a private, invitation only, online peer support community for active and former clergy who no longer hold supernatural beliefs - to date we have over 400 members and growing. The Clergy Project is managed and operated by member volunteers. Members of the public can submit donations on behalf of the Clergy Project to the Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science or the Freedom from Religion Foundation.
02-19-2013, 11:57 AM
Perhaps he wasn't a Nazi, and perhaps he gets some grief from the church's position on abortion. But left unmentioned except in briefest passing at best by this author, it's the PEDOPHILIA COVERUP! Of which he's clearly guilty (not as Pope but as head of the inquisition, since renamed).
Nice dodge by the author-- it isn't the immorality of the church and the Pope, but their morality for which they're criticized? Well, true, sort of, if you forget to mention the pedophilia matters. I suggest the author may not be all that honest as he skates right over that part.
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