If you care about individual freedom, Russell Brand isn’t a hero. He’s just another ignorant buffoon selling a populist version of socialism.
Brand is a comedian and actor, but he’s now pontificating about politics and economics to a fawning worldwide audience. I’ve seen praise heaped upon him this week by otherwise-reasonable people. Why? Because he conducted a combative interview on a BBC news show in which he attacked the Establishment.
But what does Brand stand for?
“[I advocate] a socialist egalitarian scheme based on the massive redistribution of wealth, heavy taxation of corporations,” Brand said. “The very concept of profit should be reduced. … I say profit is a filthy word because wherever there is profit, there is also deficit.”
Does this sound like someone who knows anything about individual freedom? Does it sound like someone who knows anything about economics? Does it sound like anything other than the same old ignorance that has led much of the world to economic ruin since Karl Marx popularized this nonsense?
So why was his interview popular with people who should know better? Yes, he was confrontational. Yes, he was challenging the status quo. No, he wasn’t offering anything new or helpful to those of us who want freedom.
Brand is ignorant, but he’s arrogant enough to demand government force be used to take money away from producers to give it to others. Murray Rothbard spoke clearly of this sort of loudmouth.
“It is no crime to be ignorant of economics, which is, after all, a specialized discipline and one that most people consider to be a ‘dismal science,'” Rothbard wrote. “But it is totally irresponsible to have a loud and vociferous opinion on economic subjects while remaining in this state of ignorance.”
An arrogant person performing ignorant rhetoric isn’t something that needs to be praised. Beliefs such as Brand’s are dangerous. He has every right to spout them, of course, but people who understand freedom and understand economics need to make sure that people see him for what he is.
Brand isn’t a hero. He’s an ignorant and arrogant socialist.