Smart Talk #18

With a shout-out and sincere thanks to savvy and realistic U.S. voters polled recently by highly-respected Rasmussen Reports, when likely voters gave a “smart” response to their preference for Capitalism vs. Socialism.  Sixty-seven percent of those polled indicated a clear preference for capitalism!  Only 17% overall preferred socialism.  By the way, that preference for capitalism is up by two percentage points over the same survey in 2021.

These results came at about the same time as the House of Representatives passed a Republican-initiated resolution against the “horrors of socialism.” Read the resolution, in part: “Socialist ideology necessitates a concentration of power that has time and time again collapsed into Communist regimes, totalitarian rule, and brutal dictatorships.”  One wonders whether at least some current federal Progressive-Socialist legislators and federal appointees might actually be hoping for a future dictatorial form of government, as the way to institutionalize their delusional absolute domineering federal government beliefs.  At times, with the current, continual, presidential executive orders, one regrettably wonders if that isn’t their eventual aim now. By the way, and more positively, the House resolution passed with 328 House members in favor and 86 opposed.  Among Republican members, the supportive vote was unanimous.

It’s important to know, however, that some voters, across the age groups, do feel that America is “drifting toward Socialism.”  Much of that preference seems to be coming from younger voters whose support for capitalism seems to be diminishing.  Thankfully, forty-five percent of polled voters, under 40 years of age, still do feel that “capitalism is better than socialism.” But 34% of the under-forty voter group seem to believe that socialism is the better economic-governing system. That preference for socialism is by far the strongest, however, only among those Under-40’s voters.  Just 11% of voters in the 40-64 group find socialism to be their preference, while only 7% do in the 65 & older demographic.

The concern (and something to keep an eye on) about younger Americans choosing socialism over capitalism is that such may well be insufficient experience in the “real” economic world, and merely a reflection of what they have been taught and naively absorbed from increasingly left-wing professors, working as they do apart from the “real” world, while pushing the “pros” of socialism (and the presumed life of elites), without ever dealing with the reality of history’s countless, painful failures, in terms of both the masses of humans and wealth destroyed.  Wokeism, the current fad, and apparent life-belief of sheltered liberals, would lead to, and no doubt support, a growing naive fascination with, and preference for, socialism, without ever being exposed to its incredibly destructive downside.  As of today, our thanks and relief, again, for the 67% of likely U.S. voters who continue to hold a clear preference for, and belief in, American Capitalism.

Now then, as corporate giants like Target, Wells Fargo, and Amazon, along with most tech and social media giants, have made significant cut-backs to staff in this new year in order to bring expenses back into better alignment with anticipated 2023 revenue challenges, their often hastily-bloated DEI staffs have also experienced terminations.  Two years ago, you would likely have seen continued growth, rather than dismissals, in that particular employment group.

Attitudes about the then-DEI rage may well be mellowing. “While DEI workers say they bring more black, brown, female and queer (gay) talent into firms and raise morale across the board, critics have labeled the roles a virtue-signaling exercise that fosters backlash discrimination against straight, white men.” And there is also employee pushback as DEI staffs impose training dealing with “racial bias, microaggressions, and even white privilege.”  Along with that, one must question the assertion that those DEI efforts “raise morale across the board.” Most likely a more limited “board,” as in among the DEI-directed new hires, and any faster-than-normal promotions, from within those targeted groups.  Make no mistake, long term, the concept of greater qualified employee “diversity” and “inclusion” is a positive one, especially when it leads to increased skills, innovation, motivation, and especially productivity overall for the company or organization.

While on the subject of DEI, the University of North Carolina has decided to “ban DEI statements and compelled speech from admission, hiring, promotion and tenure” (or “politically preferential” hiring, as it might be termed). It appears that this also applies to students seeking academic admission.  For this leading American university, certainly a smart move toward meaningful ‘inclusion’ for all, as it opens the door for conservative teaching and staff applicants and portends a more harmonious experience for conservative-leaning students.

Speaking of collegiate studies, under Governor Ron DeSantis’s leadership, the Florida Department of Education has rejected the teaching of a specific Advanced Placement African American Studies Course on the basis of its primarily ‘woke’ content.  The banned course included sections on “Black Queer Studies, Black Power, Black Pride, reparations, global influence of the Black Lives Matter movement, and more.” It should be noted that teaching black history is proper and already to be found within Florida’s core curriculum.  And this particular course rejection, perhaps surprisingly, had at least some support across the aisle. A black Democrat County Commissioner in Florida said in reference to the rejected course: “I think it’s trash. It’s not African American history.  It is ideology.”  Smart move by Florida to stick with instruction in solid, basic black history, rather than wandering off into politicized side-bars that have far less knowledge value for a broader student audience.

Sticking with the collegiate, and on the ‘woke’ subject of critical race theory, the University of Chicago has decided to cancel a class, entitled “The Problem of Whiteness.”  “The course description describes whiteness ‘as a conspicuous problem within liberal political discourse,’ stated University sophomore Daniel Schmidt, who criticized the University about the course in a tweet.  Other students echoed his concerns.  “The Problem of Whiteness” course had zero enrollees for the Spring Quarter.  As indicated, the University cancelled the inappropriate and demeaning course, which clearly should never have been scheduled to begin with.  Smart move, after the fact.

And finally for this edition, reflecting today’s unfortunate reality when it too often seems to come with hiring young, entry-level employees, the owner of a local, independent pizza shop in Columbus, Ohio has drawn both praise (most responses) and some disapproval on social media, with perhaps a bold, brutely honest employment sign hanging outside his business.  The sign reads: “Now hiring, non-stupid people.” Trying to cut through some of today’s attitudinal and commitment foolishness, the owner chose not to waste his valuable work time dealing with applicants who weren’t serious about working hard and consistently showing up! Yes, as countless other employers around the nation have had to deal with: lack of an acceptable work ethic and just plain not showing up! In other words, that owner is simply trying to secure young folks who really want & need the job, and once hired, were committed to doing well.

Referring to the sign, the owner’s daughter clarified its true meaning, and, perhaps surprisingly, it’s not intellect!  “A lot of people we’ve hired just don’t want to work. There is no work ethic (there), so that’s the meaning behind the ‘non-stupid’.” Just trying hard and aiming to get people committed to doing well and who are serious about work, rather than those lacking any real incentive who may be swept up in the temporary (we all hope) ‘woke’-inspired laissez-faire world of low or no real expectations, as long as they can continue living at home! Happily for this family-owned and operated business, although some have objected to the sign (on-line, as mentioned), it’s done more good than harm.  After hanging it there for about two-months, their business has actually increased!


(Facts from: Voters prefer capitalism via, Katherine Hamilton, 2-19-23; DEI staffing cut-backs via, James Reinl, 2-17-23; UNC removes DEI statements via, Kendall Tietz, 2-24-23; Florida rejects woke black history course via, Hannah Bleau, 2-1-23; University of Chicago objectionable course via, Mike LaChance, 11-9-22; Pizza shop employment sign via, Jon Brown, 2-26-23).