The End Is Near and It's Going to Be Awesome
How Going Broke Will Leave America Richer, Happier, and More Secure
Kevin D. Williamson
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The End Is Near and It's Going to Be Awesome is a radical re-visioning of what government is, a powerful analysis of why it doesn't work, and an exploration of the innovative solutions spontaneously emerging thanks to the fortunate failure of politics.
Every year, consumer goods and services get better, cheaper, and more widely available while critical necessities delivered by government grow more expensive, even as their quality declines. The reason for this paradox is simple: politics. Not bad politics, not liberal politics, not conservative politics, not politics corrupted by big money or distorted by special-interest groups, but the simple practice of delivering goods and services through federal, state, and local governments and their obsolete decision-making practices.
National Review columnist Kevin Williamson describes the crisis of the modern welfare state in the era of globalization and argues that the crucial political failures of our time—education, health care, social security, and monetary policy—are due not to ideology but the nature of politics itself. Meanwhile, those who can't or won't turn to the state for goods and services—from homeschoolers to Wall Street to organized crime—are experimenting with replacing the outmoded social software of the state with market-derived alternatives.
Williamson compellingly analyzes the government's numerous failures and reports on the solutions that people all over the country are discovering. You will meet homeschoolers who have abandoned public schools; see inside private courtrooms that administer the law beyond government; encounter entrepreneurs developing everything from private currencies to shadow intelligence agencies rivaling the CIA; and learn about the remarkably peaceable enforcement of justice in the allegedly lawless Wild West.
As our outmoded twentieth-century government collapses under the weight of its own incompetence and inefficiency, Williamson points to the green shoots of the brave new world that is already being born.
Worthwhile and thought provoking
Many useful insights to be found herein. I strongly suggest reading Ferguson's book, "Civilization" to fill in some gaps in the thesis here (the "Killer Apps" concept offers a better explanation for why things have ended up as they are than what Williamson gleens). Some of the material warrants skepticism of the sort one should reserve for common libertarian arguments that rely on oversimplifications or excising of readily available common facts to build their too–good–be–true conclusions (particularly weak on foreign affairs and jurisprudence as usual, but even here he makes many fine points). Libertarians can be so naive about the way reality actually works sometimes!
In spite of these few shortcomings, Williamson makes a credible case, that although the coming modes of collapse may be very disruptive, there is reason to be optimistic we will end up better for it.
I still fear that he and others are right that the passage from one paradigm to another could take enough decades that I will not live to see it through but hope for a quicker and more decisive resolution. Sometimes evolution is slow, sometimes it is revolutionary!
An excellent book!!
Very well written
One of the best political books I have ever read. Offers real solutions without partisan finger pointing.