Republicans love Wall Street -- oh look, Wall Street just made historic campaign contributions to Obama; he must be really cool. Republicans hate the poor because they're trying to block government policies promoting easy mortgages. . . . Oops, I wonder why the economy just tanked. It's because Bush drove it into a ditch! Enron collapsed and Paul Krugman says it's Bush's fault. Krugman was paid by Enron and Bush wasn't? Bush lied, kids died! Oil prices went up under Bush -- it's his fault -- he's an oilman! Oh but then oil prices went down under Bush. . . . Hey, look over there! A shiny object!
Despite their perennial enthusiasm for revolution and "change" in almost any form, Le Bon says, crowds are wildly conservative when it comes to scientific progress. Want to scare a liberal? Mention nuclear power plants, genetically modified fruits, new pharmaceuticals, food irradiation, or guns with plastic frames. We could probably get a crowd of liberal protesters to scatter just by coming at them with a modern vacuum cleaner.
It certainly works on dogs and cats. The Left's abject terror of technological development is yet another mob attribute. Le Bon says that the mob's "unconscious horror" of "all novelty capable of changing the essential conditions of their existence is very deeply rooted."
While mobs go about changing the names of institutions and demanding radical changes to society, he says, when it comes to scientific progress, crowds have a "fetish- like respect" for tradition.18
Thus, according to Le Bon, if "democracies possessed the power they wield today at the time of the invention of mechanical looms or of the introduction of steam- power and of railways, the realization of these inventions would have been impossible." It is lucky "for the progress of civilization that the power of crowds only began to exist when the great discoveries of science and industry had already been effected."
Our liberals are even worse than Le Bon imagined. Democrats don't merely want to block scientific progress, they want to roll it back. Al Gore's global warming fantasy book Earth in the Balance called for the worldwide elimination of the internal combustion engine within twenty-five years. (Which, if nothing else, would have ruined Obama's "car in the ditch" catch-phrase.)
In 2007, Democrats in Congress banned the incandescent lightbulb, currently scheduled for elimination in 2014. Indeed, banning Thomas Edison's invention was among the very fi rst acts of the new House majority elected in 2006, in a bill cosponsored by 195 Democrats and only 3 Republicans (two of whom are no longer in office). When Democrats came up with the idea of banning the lightbulb, what image appeared in their heads? A litcandle? Only four Democrats voted against the bill in both the House and then Senate, with the vast majority of Republicans voting against it in both chambers.