I recently wrote that Peter Schiff was opposed to equality in the workplace. He has stated publically that he supports discrimination in the workplace because of race.
This is a very common libertarian ideal. As I was rummaging through YouTube it was evident that on March 10, 2011, Schiff came out against universal suffrage. He wants to return America to the early days of her existence, and seeks to ban many who are now allowed to vote and those not owning property from voting. Many Republicans run with his talking points in making it more difficult to vote in many states.
[As this article unfolds there is statement below on behalf of Schiff by his brother, Andrew, which supports womens’ suffrage. However, Schiff does not explain the reason why he allows this evolution in national policy while rejecting the evolution of means testing in other ways. And since Schiff has clearly stated that he believes employers should be allowed to discriminate because of race, by logic this would be applied to sex as well. We need more information from Schiff as to whether employers can discriminate against women in his philosophy. His libertarian commitment about requiring voluntary relationships to override laws protecting all races from discrimination should be further explained.]
Because Schiff is in the top financial 1 per cent, from his own admission, he is a force in American politics. In times of economic turmoil demagogues come out of the woodwork. I guess we can call Schiff a demagogue for the 1 per cent. I hope the rest of them don’t claim him! And I know there aren’t many other libertarians in the 1 per cent. But Schiff has those guys bamboozled as well.
I support Peter Schiff ‘s right of free speech, but as people learn more about his racist and sexist and elitist attitudes I am hoping that his speech becomes free, out in the forest, where only a bear doing his thing can hear him.
He has a radio show. If people want to listen then fine he has the right to speak, but I don’t know why the mainstream press would bother soiling themselves with a man who fosters institutional racism and institutional sexism. After all, women bloggers and ethnic bloggers and bloggers without property must consider this man to be opposed to their very core beliefs! And yet this man is tolerated by the business community and women and minorities have to interview him, likely knowing that he views them as being inferior.
There is a problem with Schiff relating to the hot button points that he makes. He plays upon the frustration of all of us when he says that student loans drive up the price of college. I would fix that with price controls on the colleges. He would fix it by doing away with Pell grants. But the hot button issues gets him an ear. The Tea Party and libertarians are frustrated and he captures their ear. And many in those movements view Schiff as being a champion of freedom. But his views on equality in hiring and on woman suffrage doesn’t ring of freedom to most. It is a peculiar type of limited freedom.
He predicted the housing bubble collapse, although a lot of us knew there was a bubble back in 2005, way before he made the predictions. It is not like he was the only all seeing genius and no other bloggers knew about the bubble.
But many appreciated his warnings as he took enormous abuse at the hands of CNBC and Fox News and I watched him take the abuse from people I knew were misleading the American people, either by ignorance or on purpose.I supported Schiff as a brave guy who kicked the establishment for the benefit of the average guy.
Schiff even understood that the subprime, which surfaced first, was not a racial failing but rather most of the mortgages had 5 year teaser rates as opposed to 2 year rates. Turns out the 5 year teasers failed as well, as borrowers with better credit were mislead as well. His contribution to this sort of dialogue was important and made it seem that he was for the average Joe.
So it has been disheartening to have once been a fan of Peter Schiff for his courage of prediction to now be in disgust of his racist and sexist and elitist beliefs. I am appalled by his views and most of America would be as well.
The problem in the political realm is that if you start from a libertarian position, and then you propose cuts to programs that benefit minorities you have an inherent conflict of interest. No one knows if you want to cut because you are racist or because you are worried about the deficit.
Once you adopt the false assumption for the need for voluntary relationships in the public sector in order to foster “freedom”, you gravitate to a position where the employer should have freedom to discriminate according to race and not be forced into doing the right thing. The premise forces a racist conclusion, even if some libertarians go against their own logic to oppose racism.
If you adopt a view that we need to return to how things were done when the vote was not extended to all, then you are hiding behind that early behaviour in the nation to in fact, be sexist and against female political freedom. If I were female I would be outraged by anyone telling me that the Republic is in decline because of my right to vote.
Indeed, we can point to unparalleled prosperity in the 20th century. Now in times of decline, be it temporary or permanent, the demagogues come out to pit one side against another. That is how the 1 per cent operates, for the most part. But it is inevitable for the libertarian logic.
Update: In fairness, Peter Schiff ‘s brother Andrew has posted a rebuttle to my claims that he does not want woman suffrage. Here is his rebuttle:
“This is Andrew Schiff again. For the record, Peter completely supports the right for women to vote. At times he has explained why women were excluded from suffrage at the time the Constitution was drafted…and he had defended their decisions based on how SOCIETY WAS organised at that time. But he recognises how society has evolved and has always supported female suffrage.. As for universal suffrage…yes Peter has suggested that there be some criteria imposed on voting in order to improve the knowledge base and wisdom of the electorate. But he has never suggested that those criteria be based on race or gender. Those points could make for a good discussion, reasonable minds could disagree. He would happy to have those discussions with you on air if you would change your carefully considered policy of “not doing shows.” I know that you likely have very good reasons for such a stance, but you see how some people could construe the policy as a craven reluctance to confront someone who could dismantle your logic with ease. Some people are just silly that way.”
This is an admission that property is an issue or other means testing is an issue in establishing the privilege to vote. He is saying his brother does not support banning women from suffrage, however had he lived back then he would have wholeheartedly sought to keep women in their place, without the vote. I just wonder down deep what he really thinks. After all, anyone who thinks that employers should be able to discriminate because of race has some deep dark thoughts to be sure.
This was the exact transcript of Peter Schiff ‘s discussion about suffrage. I report it here, you can decide. Keep in mind his comments on discrimination as well:
“Even back then, everybody wasn’t voting. You had to be 21 to vote. That means you’re in the workforce for many, many years because people generally got out of school at 12 or 13. So you had been working for many years. In many cases, you had property qualifications, you had poll taxes, you had literary tests. There were all sorts of ways that they limited the suffrage, just so it wasn’t everybody voting because they recognised the damage that you could create when you turn elections into advanced auctions on the sale of stolen goods.
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