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I Win Ben Stein!

I had a e-mail exchange with Win Ben Stein this weekend after watching him on the "Cost of Freedom" block saying he felt Socialism was inevitable in America. Obviously he wasn't cheering it, he just felt it was inevitable. Well I went to the trouble of looking up his e-mail and having a polite go at him: Yes, I can do polite.

I made a bit of fun of the usual way people start off such e-mails, about saying how they love someone's work and really admire them right before they launch into a vicious attack. Then I launched into my attack not on Mr. Stein but the assertion he made and its underlying premise(s).

I didn't figure I'd hear back from him: Heck I wasn't even sure I had his correct e-mail. But to my pleasant surprise he did write back, saying it was a great e-mail, before having a brief go at me. Well we went back and forth a bit over the weekend. I'll spare everyone the details except to say he was polite and brief and I rambled. I haven't heard from him since my last reply.

So I'm going to say I Win Ben Stein! I'll conclude that I convinced him with my brilliant arguments, while somewhere he's out there no doubt thinking I'm an ignoramus. So then we're both winners!

Perhaps I'll write a substantive post later on what I think he meant by asserting we were inevitably drifting into Socialism, and why it's only inevitable if we let it be, and the solutions, albeit imperfect ones, to the problem. But the problem itself is at best imperfect, and all outcomes are going to be difficult and create hardships: Including the fatalistic resignation he had towards the fiscal/programatic realities we face.


This the guy that made a movie 'debunking' evolution? Buhler?

Great story, Hansel.

This is basically the story everyone tells their friends when they meet a celebrity... dropping names with no substance.

Throw us a bone, what specifically did you criticize him on? What did he hit back on?

I have trouble taking the man seriously. There's "Expelled" of course. There's also this now famous interview with Peter Schiff

I thought these were all supposed to start with: "I never believed this could happen to me..."


Yes, it's that Ben Stein and I criticized him on his assertion that Socialism was inevitable, which he seems to take as the natural consequence of entitlement programs treated as a force of nature.

He came back asking me what I'd cut so I gave him a list of just what we should do.

Future generations will know that we understood the problem. The only question then will be whether we were fatalistically resigned to leaving them with the consequences (Edward Heath-era Britain or worse), or at least went down swinging, trying to turn back the tide.

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