I’m too tired to respond to the article, but I thought the link was worth posting for discussion. The author, Leonard Shumard, argues that protesters and activists are “tearing apart the very fabric which binds our society.”

He gives more credit to demonstrating than I.  I’ve attended far more marches/demos than I could hope to recount, and I tend to think they suffer from a sort of inflationary effect of diminishing returns.  I’ve argued in the past that demonstration should be organized only as part of a comprehensive political strategy, with clear goals in mind, but to many activists the demonstration is the end.  If it happens, it’s effective just because it is.

But the TS op ed piece suggests that activism is bad precisely because it is effective.  There is an ultra-libertarian argument that all altruistic behavior is bad for the economy because it undermines the beneficial greed which sets the parameters for an effective supply and demand system of economics.  Everyone acts in his/her material interests and we all float to the top under a Newtonian market force utopia.  When you act contrary to your material interests you upset the oh so delicate ecology of the free market.  And certainly if you frustrate those forces with any kind of intervention or “do gooderism” you set everything out of whack and tumbling towards social chaos where life is “nasty, brutish, and short.”

Life is simple.

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