Submitted by Frank Ditko
The Left’s push to “defund the police” is now in full swing, with the Minneapolis City Council voting to dismantle that city’s police department and leftists nationwide calling for similar measures elsewhere. Although defunding the police is substantively stupid (assuming generously that leftists care about the safety of the inner-city poor), it is politically clever. The Left has identified a rival power bloc–police departments and their unions–and has seized on an excuse to deprive that rival of its lifeblood: money. The Right can and should learn from this. Who are our enemies, and how might we starve those beasts? A few answers come to mind.
1. Starve Hollywood and the Media–Abolish Copyright.
The entertainment industries hate you and have conducted a decades-long campaign to marginalize your views and promote degeneracy. While they have been wildly successful in that endeavor, their success is not cause to be intimidated. For the entertainment industry has an Achilles’ heel: its well-being depends substantially on copyright, a government-created monopoly on the content of films, music, and written works. The current copyright regime affords exclusive rights to copyright owners for 70 years after the life of the author. In contrast, our nation’s original Copyright Act of 1790 applied to copyrighted material for only 14 to 28 years. Returning to the 1790 regime would deal the entertainment industry a devastating blow. Abolishing copyright entirely would crush it. A smaller, poorer entertainment industry means that hostile elites have much less power to influence the culture. On that basis alone, every man of the right should support copyright reform or abolition.
2. Starve Academia–Curtail Federal Student Loans.
Anyone familiar with the slogans deployed by the BLM rioters last week would conclude that higher education has been another potent vector for our present social ills. Fortunately for the right, education is a bubble inflated by the state. Every year, the federal government allocates over $100 billion for loans and grants that go to your garden-variety American Studies majors and to acolytes of other socially corrosive cults. If those funds were instead limited to STEM and a few other geopolitically useful disciplines, the higher education bubble would pop. As a result, the propagation of progressive memes would be far more difficult.
3. Starve the Progressive Philanthropy Racket–Abolish Private Foundations.
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, the Right should target private foundations. These legal entities have been instrumental in funding everything from the sexual revolution to Black Lives Matter. (See C.A. Bond’s book Nemesis for details.) But like copyright protection and higher education subsidies, private foundations are purely creatures of the state. Accordingly, simple changes to the tax code could strip private foundations of their tax-exempt status, impose prohibitive excise taxes on their income, or deprive them of legal recognition altogether. Ford, Rockefeller, and Open Society would wither on the vine, and you might notice a conspicuous lack of drag queens at your local public library.
Ultimately, the Right needs to take a lesson from our woke opponents. Victory depends on taking the same “defund the police” approach to the Left’s own power blocs. In short, we have to go after the money.