Thursday, December 29, 2011

Two views on the long run: Keynes vs Isaiah

Some Optimistic Pessimism
There's a blogpost that's making its way around the talk-show and email list circuit, by a lady named Jen Kuznicki, called "Ann Coulter Has Lost Faith"
"I read Ann’s latest column with a heavy heart. I came away with the unmistakable feeling that she has lost faith in the philosophy and movement she has been a firebrand for until now. And I think about how it happens that a person at the age of 50 becomes the very cheerleader for the status quo that she argued against these many years...."
Kuznicki is particularly upset that Coulter is de-emphasizing all of the key Tea Party, fiscally conservative, lower taxes and limited government hot button issues, in favor of what Coulter considers to be the two most important things for the next president to accomplish:
"... two things. Repealing Obamacare, and halting illegal immigration."
Pardon my shocked look of surprise, but seriously, during a time when Mitt Romney can be considered a conservative... do you really expect actual conservative candidates and issues to come to the fore?

Sorry, but I don't, and I'm not shocked by how this campaign is shaping up. A friend, former Mo. State Senator John Loudon, called this over a year ago, that Romney would be the establishment pick to run for President in 2012.

Now it hasn't happened yet, and maybe it won't (fingers crossed), but that that is even conceivable should tell you a lot about the so-called  'conservative' world we live in.

Seriously. We are talking about Mitt Romney, after all, who willingly, as Gov., helped craft a plan that is not only wrong on every principle of the Free Market and Individual Rights, but is actively antithetical to them.

Yes he was Gov of Massachusetts, yes the people wanted him to, yes that technically justified his helping them to get to what they wanted, but my ideal, actual Conservative, candidate would be someone who, if faced with the same situation, would not only have opposed and refused such a plan, but would have tirelessly worked to explain why state run health care was wrong and inevitably ruinous to the state’s economy and to the quality of health care available to all; someone who would have responded over and over again with different plans for how to address the actual problems with health care, which lay in how the state and federal govt's are already interfering in the markets, and dragging it down just as hard as it was forcing the prices of it up. But instead, he crafted RomneyCare, a plan which he still considers to be 'Conservative'.

Well... guess what folks... there's a reason why he's not being laughed out of every GOP primary state, and that is that every Republican primary state considers Romney to be able to pass the laugh test when calling himself a conservative. And his most serious opposition is Newt "Govt can do great things!" Gingrich!


Not to be a Debbie Downer, but maybe I just have the advantage of never having expected a political solution to appear within the next few elections, and so the fact that some people fall along the wayside, the fact that candidates and pundits alike choose the expedient over the long term good,and the fact that the chaff is being sold as USDA Prime Grade "A" Wheat, is just no big surprise - I had never seriously expected anything else.

Hoped for something else, definitely. Worked for something else, yep. Expected something else? Nope.

What do you want in the long run?
My question to you is, what are you hoping to accomplish, something that'll endure and stand the test of time, or something that'll give you short term gratification?

Uber-Leftist economist Lord Keynes, when asked about what he'd do when in the long run his policies couldn't help but collapse the economic system and bring widespread ruin, famously quipped
"In the end, we're all dead"
,and you've gotta admit that he has a point there, right? I mean, if you are looking to get what you can, why worry about what happens in the end? Eat, drink and be merry at your grand kids expense, what are they gonna do, dig you up and collect?

That's one view of the long run, a very popular one at that, and it certainly puts a rosier face on the present moment, as taking the easy way out usually does. For the moment. But in the long run... you're doomed by it (actually, I think you doom and destroy yourself in the present as well, but that's something for another post).

Now, lower the fur on the ruff of your neck, pull your fangs back in, at least for the moment, and seriously consider this - in a world where Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney are seriously being put forward as the top two candidates for the 'conservative' GOP nomination... what do you suppose would be the result if a real conservative were to somehow be found, win the nomination and actually be elected President?

First off, they couldn't do it without trying to downplay their conservatism, just as RomneRich is trying to downplay their proregressive beliefs. Second, if a true conservative won, and then began trying to govern as a conservative - there would be riots in the streets.

What's that you say? Obama pulled off a bait and switch? Well of course he did, Obama could pull that off because he hasn't a principled bone in his body - and he ran as an unprincipled candidate who'd lean center-right, so naturally he has no problem with governing as an unprincipled candidate who, though not as centrist as he said he was... is still being consistent in showing that he has no principles.

And that'll work for an unprincipled person who runs as an unprincipled person, you can run as a liar and behave like a bigger one once you win.

But it doesn't work the other way around. You cannot run as an unprincipled middle of the roader, and then tear off the mask and say,
"Here I am to save the day! I'm going to stand on principle!"
, that doesn't work, cannot work, never has worked, and never will work.

If you want to run as a principled candidate, you'd better be able to count on at least a majority of the electorate who believes that you are principled, and wants to elect you because of that.

Now as mad as I'm sure that makes you, let me remind you again, Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney are the front runners for the 'conservative' GOP nomination for President of the United States of America.

And very few people are laughing at that.

That is not a portrait of the electorate who is looking for, and demanding, principled, conservative leaders. I'm sorry, it's just not.

Thinking that we could, would or should elect principled conservative leaders to lead this electorate... is... as much as it pains me to say, nuts. If they were elected, we'd sure enjoy the party after the election... but it'd be downhill in a hurry right afterwards, and in the long run, we'd be even further from a true conservative victory and presidency than had the leftie won.

I will not sacrifice the long run to a frivolous short term 'victory'.

Personally, I prefer a more practical, realistic view of the long run - aka Principled - and so I can point, optimistically, to a very pessimistic post from years gone by, which many of you are probably already familiar with, written by a fellow named Albert Jay Nock. He published an essay in 1936, which you'll recall would have been when FDR was heading into only his 2nd term as President, called "Isaiah's Job". Given the establishment party push that is obviously behind Romney, and the physical retching which that causes for myself and the Tea Party people I associate with, this is one essay that is well worth re-reading today.
"... In the year of Uzziah's death, the Lord commissioned the prophet to go out and warn the people of the wrath to come. "Tell them what a worthless lot they are." He said, "Tell them what is wrong, and why and what is going to happen unless they have a change of heart and straighten up. Don't mince matters. Make it clear that they are positively down to their last chance. Give it to them good and strong and keep on giving it to them. I suppose perhaps I ought to tell you," He added, "that it won't do any good. The official class and their intelligentsia will turn up their noses at you and the masses will not even listen. They will all keep on in their own ways until they carry everything down to destruction, and you will probably be lucky if you get out with your life."
Isaiah had been very willing to take on the job — in fact, he had asked for it — but the prospect put a new face on the situation. It raised the obvious question: Why, if all that were so — if the enterprise were to be a failure from the start — was there any sense in starting it? "Ah," the Lord said, "you do not get the point...."
The Lord's point was, while the people he was having Isaiah preach to could have listened and saved themselves, it was more likely that they would not, and so the real worthwhile nature of the job the Lord was giving Isaiah, was to arm the people who did listen, not only with the knowledge that they were right, but to help them understand why they were right, and if they would hold to what they knew was right, rather than what would be politically easy, they would win out - eventually.

None of us like to hear the word 'eventually', but apparently in regards to the Lord Isaiah was speaking for, History and indeed the Universe, that's the only game in town, and since it's their game we're playing - we'd best get used to it.

I’ll of course continue to do what I can in this and various other races, as should we all - that is one of the best ways possible to spread the word and to begin the process of educating people - but this nominee isn’t the point. The congressional elections may be closer to it, but they aren’t the point either.  Personally, I’m focusing on decades down the line where the actual point is, by educating and spreading the word every chance I can get, about what the Constitution is, why it is important, and what it actually means and means to us. IMHO that is the most practical, worthwhile effort, that we can make at this point in time.


Because we will not have, cannot have, a ‘conservative’ candidate, a classical liberal of our Founders variety, who can run, win and govern as such, until we have a significant percentage of the populace who understands why it is necessary to have such a candidate, and a sizable percentage of the inattentive moderates who, on hearing the conservative platform, can nod and say ‘eh, I suppose that’s not too extreme’.

And we are a long way from that.

Yes I know the polls that say we are a majority conservative country, but if you look closer you'll find that we are a majority little 'r' republican electorate, and a sizable number of those who identify themselves as Conservative, also approve of such unconstitutional 'norms' as Social Security, Medicare, and unconstitutional regulatory agencies such as the SEC, EPA, FDA, eieio.

None of this should excuse anyone of us from doing their best to elect and/or pass the most conservative candidates and bills as we can here and now... but... these are and can only be, fleeting, stop gap efforts, they will accomplish little, in and of themselves, for the long run. As I was saying to a friend the other day, there's nothing to be gained by fooling yourself - we've got to reestablish a populace who has read and at least partially grasps the Constitution, before we'll ever have a Candidate who can hope to run on it, let alone be able to govern under it.

This shouldn't be that depressing to hear. We've got a huge advantage that Isaiah didn't have - he was just one person, we are hundreds, thousands... maybe even millions... there's plenty of reason for optimism - for the long run - especially when you realize that most of the media is geared towards ensuring that Nock’s & Isiaih’s Remnant don't discover that they are who they are and that they are not alone.

Isaiah's Job: It's not just for Isaiah anymore
Those of you who know the truth, you, each and everyone of you, are now charged with Isaiah's Job: Spread the word. And if you don't win this election or the next, well boo-hoo, but sorry, that's not the point and it never was, and if you thought it was, you wandered into the wrong game by mistake, if you want the easy job go become a proregressive leftist. It's the easiest game in town, requires little or no thought and pays off in immediate gratification, pays out obvious rewards and comes with the uber-easy satisfaction of having good intentions.

That's great and all... if you don't look at where the road of good intentions leads to - in the long run.
Remember, it is all about the long run. Whine about the problems of the moment if you must, I know I certainly will now and then, but you take those complaints seriously at your own peril.

The point is, to learn the truth, spread the word of what you know, talk to your friends and relatives about Why conservative ideas are better, and in the long run it'll be proregressivism and Keynesianism that'll be dead, and the Truth, Individual Rights and the Free Market that'll win out... but only, as a recent Isaiah, Winston Churchill, once said of us
"You can always count on Americans to do the right thing—after they’ve tried everything else."
And in the words of another Isaiah, Frederick Douglass, said in his speech "The Mission of the War,"
Then there is the danger arising from the impatience of the people on account of the prolongation of the war. I know the American people. They are an impulsive people, impatient of delay, clamorous for change, and often look for results out of all proportion to the means employed in attaining them. You and I know that the mission of this war is national regeneration. We know and consider that a nation is not born in a day. We know that large bodies move slowly—and often seem to move thus when, could we perceive their actual velocity, we should be astonished at its greatness. A great battle lost or won is easily described, understood and appreciated, but the moral growth of a great nation requires reflection, as well as observation, to appreciate it.
That is no less true today in our war of ideas, than it was during our actual Civil War back in 1863. Look to win in the long run, work for the long run, that's where the only worthwhile victory truly lies.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

What gifts has Christmas brought you?

What meaning is there to be found in Christmas, even by those who find no meaning in Christmas at all?

First off, grant that the false alternative of 'Not all Christians are good, therefore Christianity is bad', is in fact a false alternative, one that you should not burden your thoughts further with. Don't look at how Christians often misbehave as badly or worse than non-Christians, or that Christianity has failed to make heaven on earth, look instead at what is here in our lives as a result of the birth which Christmas commemorates.

Christianity has given us the ability to see that each person, peasant or prince, is as beloved of God as another, and that their choice is such a holy a thing that even God himself does not attempt to prevent it - not even with the choice of whether or not to accept God into their lives - Christianity declared that every man has the ability to accept God into their life - or to reject him - and that such godlike power is given to every man, the power to gainsay the will of All Mighty God - now there's a gift worth giving.

And every man, Christian or Gentile, has profited from it.

It has brought us the concept that the mistakes you make are of little value against what you eventually get right and true. Even if everyone of your choices were to reject God and what God wanted for you... your change of heart is enough to restore you to him... as if you who had persisted your whole life in adding two plus two and behaving as if the answer were three, or one, or any number of other numbers - the fact that you might finally see, and admit, that two plus two equals four, wipes your slate clean (note: it doesn't claim that the consequences of your errors will be wiped away, only that you would be accepted as finally whole and true).

Western Civilization is inextricably a Greco/Roman Judeo/Christian One
Through Christianity and the philosophy of the Greeks and Romans; the Good, the Beautiful and the True, are not just ideals, but principles of eternal Truths attainable by every person, birthrights, no matter their station in life. With this understanding comes the realization that every man, woman and child has the God given right to pursue them, and that the worldly power of government should be devoted to defending their choices in that pursuit. That is an ideal that would not exist, America would never, could never have been, without Christianity having come into the world first.


Has this realization made men better? Perhaps not entirely so. But it has made it possible for men to see that they can, and should, be better, and because of that the world is immensely better off than it was before the advent of Christianity.

Prior to the Judeo-Christian views, the world was ruled by power without rival. Even on those rare occasions where truth and wisdom was sought, and an effort to see the scales of justice balanced was made - Greece and Rome - nowhere did the desire to do good have value in and of itself, so much so that people would expend great amounts of time, effort, blood and treasure in an attempt to improve the lot of others, to bring them not just goods but Goodness, nowhere else did this occur upon the globe (and I do not mean do-gooders, a mirror image, and often a rejection of doing good).

Charities are something you will look in vain to see in pre or non-Christian cultures, and those few exceptions which you might find some semblance of them, simply prove the rule.

Even Art - not as decoration or garish depiction, but as an idealization of truth and goodness and a means of mending and lifting the soul - that is not found outside the Greco/Roman-Judeo/Christian, world view (and no, do not attempt to compare an oriental gong or pipe to Gregorian Chants or Bach, do not attempt to equate a golden Buddha with the Sistine Chapel - do not).

More than all of that, Christianity has brought with it the idea of 'you must be born again', or 'born from above' to a central position in every life; even to secular views this brought the conviction that your ideals and actions must come from and align with higher principles, rather than settling for greater quantities of measures and pleasures; that Quality is infinitely greater than Quantity. With the idea that God became Man, came the possibility of the idea that man could participate in the divine, and that even though you will never become perfect yourself (itself a monumental realization), you can strive to become more perfect through aligning your ideals with those of God - the meaning of progress itself is meaningless without that.

And that is Good.

And through this, there comes the possibility that men can, and should, strive for peace on earth and good will towards all. And whether or not you believe that Jesus was ever even born, let alone the Christ, the idea that he was, has opened the possibility of more meaningful lives for all in this world, than was ever possible before Christ.

Merry Christmas to all!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Wiener Roust for the National Defense Authorization Act

Ok, well as far as illustrating absurdity by being absurd... this might take the cake... or the wiener, as the case may be.

You've probably heard about the fears of indefinite detention by the military in the new NDAA bill. Depending on who you talk to, it is clearly in there, not in there at all, or seems like it could be included in it through some language sprinkled throughout the clauses.

I don't know.

Tea Party favorite Rep. Alan West says it's ok. Tea Party favorite Sen. Mike Lee says it's uber-bad news. Do you have time to read a 600 page bill? I'm sad to say that I don't. I gave my effort on the TARP bills. And on the Obamacare Bill. And on the BBA bill. I'm tapped out at the moment. What does it matter anyway? As the boys in The Federalist Papers noted in #62,

"The internal effects of a mutable policy are still more calamitous. It poisons the blessing of liberty itself. It will be of little avail to the people, that the laws are made by men of their own choice, if the laws be so voluminous that they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be understood; if they be repealed or revised before they are promulgated, or undergo such incessant changes that no man, who knows what the law is to-day, can guess what it will be to-morrow. Law is defined to be a rule of action; but how can that be a rule, which is little known, and less fixed?"
When the laws are too many, too long, and too frequently changed... no one can know what anything really means... even if you tried to. And past the beginning of this latest fiasco... I haven't. And that might be my undoing, since, by some of the interpretations of the term 'terrorist' by our very own DHS - I do after all have a copy of the Constitution and occasionally display the flag - I could find myself on that list. Hey, look on the bright side, maybe they'd send my oldest Son, or his best friend to pick me up.

So sure the wiener roust is funny.

But the law isn't.

Even if the language has been cleared up, as my Rep. Akin assures me it has,
"There has been a lot of confusion over what this provision will mean, and many people have been concerned that it will allow American citizens to be arrested and detained for indefinite periods of time, simply based on suspicion and no real evidence. I agree that this would be a serious violation of Constitutional rights and the due process of law. Earlier versions of the bill were unclear on this point; however, the conference report on H.R. 1540 was the final version that passed the House on December 14, and it renders all previous versions void."
, it's only language... and any set of legislators and justices who can interpret with a straight face, the wording of the single clearl line of the Commerce Clause, to mean that a farmer growing food for his own use could be considered to be violating laws based upon the constitution (oh yeah, I'll get to that in a minute), then... your confidence in your language might be... misplaced. For now I'm betting that no matter how satisfied 'common sense conservatives' are with this bill's 600+ pages of statements and exceptions, and retractions and restatements... if those in power want to read into it whatever powers they'd like to - they will.

When clear meaning is called a fancy... why bother questioning anything at all?
If you read this bill as plainly meaning what its language plainly states it should... you are living in the real world. Unfortunately, our government is not living in that same real world. Our government is living in a world where it can take language like this,

"To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes;"
, even when the possibility that it could be used in any other way, would be understood by any responsible person as to make the entire structure of the Constitution pointless; as Justice Joseph Story put it in his commentaries on the Constitution,
"Neither is it disputed, that the laying of duties is, or may be an appropriate means of regulating commerce. But the question is a very different one, whether, under pretence of an exercise of the power to regulate commerce, congress may in fact impose duties for objects wholly distinct from commerce. The question comes to this, whether a power, exclusively for the regulation of commerce, is a power for the regulation of manufactures? The statement of such a question would seem to involve its own answer. Can a power, granted for one purpose, be transferred to another? If it can, where is the limitation in the constitution? Are not commerce and manufactures as distinct, as commerce and agriculture? If they are, how can a power to regulate one arise from a power to regulate the other? It is true, that commerce and manufactures are, or may be, intimately connected with each other. A regulation of one may injuriously or beneficially affect the other. But that is not the point in controversy. It is, whether congress has a right to regulate that, which is not committed to it, under a power, which is committed to it, simply because there is, or may be an intimate connexion between the powers. If this were admitted, the enumeration of the powers of congress would be wholly unnecessary and nugatory. Agriculture, colonies, capital, machinery, the wages of labour, the profits of stock, the rents of land, the punctual performance of contracts, and the diffusion of knowledge would all be within the scope of the power; for all of them bear an intimate relation to commerce. The result would be, that the powers of congress would embrace the widest extent of legislative functions, to the utter demolition of all constitutional boundaries between the state and national governments. "
Even given all that, our government was still able to take that, twist it, and do so in front of the Supreme Court court, and in a manner that is very much in line with the wildest dreams of our legislatures of the last couple years. They did that and still do so publicly, without causing any concern to many of our citizens, professors and media types beyond number. None of the smarter set even blink today at the notion of twisting the Commerce Clause into a statist tool of justification for jailing a small, family farmer, for the economic crime of growing his own crops, for his own use - not to sell, but to feed his own livestock. That was done with FDR's New Deal case, Wickard v. Filburn, and it is held up as a respectable precedent today - they simply said 'oh sure he's doing on his own land, for his own use, but hey, because he isn't buying it from someone else, that affects national markets and interstate commerce,

"...But even if appellee's activity be local and though it may not be regarded as commerce, it may still, whatever its nature, be reached by Congress if it exerts a substantial economic effect on interstate commerce and this irrespective of whether such effect is what might at some earlier time have been defined as 'direct' or 'indirect.'"
Sooo... because he didn't do something... that makes it legal cause for you to be fined, even jailed, because you didn't commit a crime that might have been a crime if you did... WTF?!. And that was in a time when the world still seemed sensible. What chance have you possibly got in a world like today, a legal world, mind you, such as that - it taxes the mind, so to speak, that you could possibly count on common sense understanding of anything.

Our government lives in a dream world of their own design, and they use their dreams of what they'd like the world to be like, as 'constitutional' excuses for doing anything and everything they want to do - if they even feel the need to cite anything at all. And of such dreams, my nightmares are made of.

So enjoy your hotdogs while you can. Before you're rousted that is.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Happy 220th Bill of Rights Birthday!

220 years ago today the states ratified the first ten amendments to the Constitution of the United States of America!

Although it wasn't planned, I'm kinda pleased that the first two weren't ratified at the time (though one of them was ratified in the 1990's... do you know which one?)... Freedom of Speech just should be a 1st Amendment issue!

And while you're at it, pay especially close attention to the preamble that I've put in bold for you... just in case your eyes are getting as bad as mine (IOW They didn't trust govt with the Founding Fathers themselves... are you really going to trust the bunch we've got today? Pay Attention!).

Proposed Amendments and Ratification
1789 Elliot 1:338--40

Congress of the United States;
Begun and held at the City of New York, on Wednesday, the 4th of March, 1789.

The conventions of a number of the states having, at the time of their adopting the Constitution, expressed a desire, in order to prevent misconstruction or abuse of its powers, that further declaratory and restrictive clauses should be added; and as extending the ground of public confidence in the government will best insure the beneficent ends of its institution;--

Resolved, by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America, in Congress assembled, two thirds of both houses concurring, that the following articles be proposed to the legislatures of the several states, as amendments to the Constitution of the United States, all or any of which articles, when ratified by three fourths of the said legislatures, to be valid, to all intents and purposes, as part of the said Constitution, namely,--

Articles in Addition to, and Amendment of, the Constitution of the United States of America, proposed by Congress, and ratified by the Legislatures of the several States, pursuant to the Fifth Article of the original Constitution.

Art. I. [Not Ratified] After the first enumeration required by the first article of the Constitution, there shall be one representative for every thirty thousand, until the number shall amount to one hundred, after which the proportion shall be so regulated by Congress, that there shall not be less than one hundred representatives, nor less than one representative for every forty thousand persons, until the number of representatives shall amount to two hundred, after which the proportion shall be so regulated by Congress, that there shall not be less than two hundred representatives, nor more than one representative for every fifty thousand.

Art. II. [Not ratified... for two centuries] No law varying the compensation for services of the senators and representatives shall take effect, until an election of representatives shall have intervened.

Art. III. Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof, or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

Art. IV. A well-regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

Art. V. No soldier shall, in time of peace, be quartered in any house without the consent of the owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner prescribed by law.

Art. VI. The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated; and no warrants shall issue, but upon principal cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Art. VII. No person shall be held to answer for a capital or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia when in actual service, in time of war or public danger; nor shall any person be subject, for the same offence, to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled, in any criminal case, to be a witness against himself; nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use without just compensation.

Art. VIII. In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right of a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the state and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law; and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor; and to have the assistance of counsel for his defence.

Art. IX. In suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury shall be otherwise reëxamined, in any court of the United States, than according to the rules in common law.

Art. X. Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

Art. XI. The enumeration, in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

Art. XII. The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states, respectively, or to the people.

Speaker of the House of Representatives.
JOHN ADAMS, Vice-President of the United States,

and President of the Senate. 
Attest. John Beckley
Clerk of the House of Representatives.
Samuel A. Otis, Secretary of the Senate.
Which, being transmitted to the several state legislatures, were decided upon by them, according to the following returns:--

By the State of New Hampshire.--Agreed to the whole of the said amendments, except the 2d article.
By the State of New York.--Agreed to the whole of the said amendments, except the 2d article.
By the State of Pennsylvania.--Agreed to the 3d, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, and 12th articles of the said amendments.
By the State of Delaware.--Agreed to the whole of the said amendments, except the 1st article.
By the State of Maryland.--Agreed to the whole of the said twelve amendments.
By the State of South Carolina.--Agreed to the whole said twelve amendments.
By the State of North Carolina.--Agreed to the whole of the said twelve amendments.
By the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations.--Agreed to the whole of the said twelve articles.
By the State of New Jersey.--Agreed to the whole of the said amendments, except the second article.
By the State of Virginia.--Agreed to the whole of the said twelve articles.
No returns were made by the states of Massachusetts, Connecticut, Georgia, and Kentucky.

The amendments thus proposed became a part of the Constitution, the first and second of them excepted, which were not ratified by a sufficient number of the state legislatures.

The Founders' Constitution
Volume 5, Bill of Rights, Document 12
The University of Chicago Press
Elliot, Jonathan, ed. The Debates in the Several State Conventions on the Adoption of the Federal Constitution as Recommended by the General Convention at Philadelphia in 1787. . . . 5 vols. 2d ed. 1888. Reprint. New York: Burt Franklin, n.d.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Presidents Obama & TR’s Nationalism vs Original Americanism

Teddy Roosevelt made a speech a century ago, entitled “The New Nationalism”, which our current president, Obama, recently praised and reprised in his own speech. He noted, with a smile, how the press had then characterized TR’s speech as socialistic and even communistic,
"in 1910, Teddy Roosevelt came here to Osawatomie and he laid out his vision for what he called a New Nationalism. “Our country,” he said, “…means nothing unless it means the triumph of a real democracy…of an economic system under which each man shall be guaranteed the opportunity to show the best that there is in him.” (Applause.)

Now, for this, Roosevelt was called a radical. He was called a socialist -- (laughter) -- even a communist."
Does the word 'why?' pop into anyone else's mind but mine? Especially given the excuses that are usually shot back at any hint of someone being called a communist or a socialist - you know, McCarthyism! Reactionary! Racist! - whatever could have been their motivation here? This was, after all, a half century before Joe McCarthy… did conservatives knees really jerk before the eevile Joe McCarthy terrorized the nation? Before Stalin? Before even the USSR? Why?

Sorry if that got your curiosity up, I'm afraid that President Obama didn’t get into WHY they had said that about TR (surprise!) or why he thought they were silly to name him such, it’s enough, I guess, for the habitual smearer to sneer and move on, neatly avoiding contact with any real substance that might be lurking in the issue - that or it just didn't make it onto his teleprompter screen. Hard to tell which.

But there were reasons, very good reasons, for characterizing TR, and Obama, in that way, and those reasons hold as true today, as they did yesterday and yesteryear, and really it boils down to the proregressive's inherent antagonism towards key fundamentals of Americanism which Nationalist's have no choice but to oppose... but let's leave that for later.

It's enough, for now, to just observe the contradictions, misdirections, lies, inherent in promoting this new 'New Nationalism', and they are off the charts. It took me quite a while to get through this speech, I wasn't able to manage more than a page at a time before a knot of raging disgust welled up inside and I needed to get up and flush it from my mind. But even so, I've been able to glean a few points that I think are important to highlight... so... I'll try to quell the anger and nausea, and will see if I can get the point across without too much of my disgust spilling out into the html. Too much.

On the practical side, President Obama does seem to have learned a thing or two from his Regulatory Czar, Cass Sunstein, which is especially appropriate, given that this speech is on the signature speech of the father of the American Regulatory State, Theodore Roosevelt. The degree to which he skillfully splices together lies and facts with a fine weld of sympathetic misdirection for solder is really remarkable; and there are multiple instances where he comes out and says one thing, and then takes it back by saying its opposite shortly thereafter... it's stunning.

For instance, look at these two paragraphs where he begins with a very Luddite-ish moaning about the job killing nastiness of modern technology and the nastiness of the business cycle... and then just a bit further on, he takes that back with how he of course has no intention of complaining about modern technology or the business cycle!

... he giveth with one hand...... and taketh away with the other
Factories where people thought they would retire suddenly picked up and went overseas, where workers were cheaper. Steel mills that needed 100 -- or 1,000 employees are now able to do the same work with 100 employees, so layoffs too often became permanent, not just a temporary part of the business cycle. And these changes didn’t just affect blue-collar workers. If you were a bank teller or a phone operator or a travel agent, you saw many in your profession replaced by ATMs and the Internet.
It’s not a view that we should somehow turn back technology or put up walls around America. It’s not a view that says we should punish profit or success or pretend that government knows how to fix all of society’s problems. It is a view that says in America we are greater together -- when everyone engages in fair play and everybody gets a fair shot and everybody does their fair share. (Applause.)
I could churn out 5,000 words on just these two paragraphs alone... especially the last part of the second paragraph... but as much as I'm sure your just itching to torture your eyes with that... I'll try and keep my keyboards Niagara Falls to a trickling faucet. I said try.

The President has made these comments about those dastardly ATM's giving people access to ATM's at all hours of the day and night... what is that about? Does he really think they left bank tellers forever out in the cold? They moved on to other jobs Barack! And with people having readier, 24hr access to their money, productivity and sales were boosted, jobs were created - how can he say these things without deep embarrassment? How can the snooty-tooty New York Times not call him on that?!

And on top of that he's lamenting about 'Madge' the AT&T Telephone operator whose technological replacement gave you the ability to make direct telephone connections across town and across the country, without having to ask an operator to connect you... that isn't something to lament! While 'One ringy dingy... two ringy dingy..." might have been a good gag, I mean, come one, what is this rubbish about? Just what sort of fears is he trying to stir up here?

And the poor Travel Agent who was kicked into poverty by your being able to find better and less expensive travel packages online, yourself? Those who could find no other way to make their services useful to you, were released from that unproductive position, you wasted less time having to wheel and deal with them, you had more money available to spend and invest elsewhere... wealth and prosperity was created and spread, not lost!

Oh the horrors. Mr. President, if the 21st century is too much for you, at least get with the 20th!

When people hear this, doesn't some part of their mind wonder what ever happened to the legions of blacksmiths who were displaced by the automobile? Or the candle makers who lost lost their jobs, and their manufacturers closed their door when the electric light bulb was introduced to the market? Have you asked yourself, was society really poorer as a result of their introduction? Does anyone, even bank tellers, really miss having to rush to the bank between 9:00 and 5:00 Mon-Fri in order to have money for the evening or weekend? Does anyone really miss having to ask an operator to connect them to a phone number across the state or nation? Does anyone really miss being able to turn the light on, or off, with a wave of the hand, rather than striking a match to light a candle... or stooping to blow one out, and making sure it actually goes out so your house doesn't burn down?

Isn't the truth of the matter more that while some few people had to find new ways of earning a living, millions of other people (and they themselves indirectly) benefited from these technological advances? Doesn't everyone implicitly realize that these advances have contributed enormously to making us a wealthier nation? A wealthier world?

Don't you then wonder to yourself "Just what in the heck is President Obama trying to accomplish by raising such silly issues? Repeatedly?

What is seen, and what is not seen
But... with the trickling faucet, rather than Niagara Falls, in mind, this post can't be about proregressive's economic ignorance and hidebound inability to see what is seen, and what is not seen. The real issue goes much further and deeper than Obama's Luddite streak.

Instead what he is attempting through mingling the thinnest of appearances and the deepest lies of omission... not to mention blatant bald faced lies, is to enable the Fox to blame the hens for the missing eggs in the hen-house. For instance,
"Factories where people thought they would retire suddenly picked up and went overseas, where workers were cheaper."
Seriously? 'Suddenly picked up'? Really? The American worker is famously more productive than any other nations worker's, still to this day,... and in comparison to some locations, are several times more productive; add to that the cash consuming difficulties of language, infrastructure, int'l laws, shipping... expectations of bribery and plain ol' criminal activities... just where is it that these companies are supposedly going to reap their supposedly vast, greed-worthy savings, from hiring cheap labor?

These workers would nearly have to be paying the companies twice over in order to make it an economic benefit to move overseas on the basis of cheap wages alone.

So there is something going on here, something more than simply going to where 'workers were cheaper' that makes the move overseas into a profitable and practical decision to make. What else do you suppose might have contributed to factories having 'suddenly picked up' and moved overseas?
Well... what was it that Obama says he is most proud of Teddy Roosevelt and America for?
"... an eight-hour work day and a minimum wage for women -- (applause) -- insurance for the unemployed and for the elderly, and those with disabilities; political reform and a progressive income tax."
Those are some of the ideas and realities which Theodore Roosevelt helped to bring to America, but before you get carried away with rapture over the 8hr work day, try and remember that he brought more than that to our shores, he, more than anyone else, brought us the intrusive Regulatory Agencies, beginning with what became the FDA, and then rapidly metastasizing into the likes of the FTC, FLRA, ED, SEC, EPA, OSHA, EEOC, DOL, DOE, DOT, DOI, HUD, HHS, USDA, and of course everyone's favorites, the FED and the IRS... and hundreds more at the Federal and State level.

Every single one of these agencies has thousands of pages of regulations and requirements which must be filed, approved, jumped through hoops for, resubmitted, updated... and worst of all met... even though they often contradict each other in what they require of a business. The administrative time, effort and cost of just meeting the regulations, to say nothing of what the regulations require businesses to construct, install, maintain, etc, the amount of wasted wealth is astronomical.

And do you know what locations such as Mexico & China do not have? Comparatively little or none of that. That is what makes it worthwhile to close down the factory here, the factory where management would otherwise have been easily able to oversee and keep first hand eyes on their operations, to leave behind them the homes where their own family and friends are, and ship it all over seas.

Factories did not 'suddenly pick up and leave', these factories which the proregressives routinely castigate for their greed and unpatriotic pursuit of a buck overseas, were instead practically thrown out by our own government! Uncle Sam has been not just outsourcing, but forcing out our productive abilities to other nations. If you don't believe me, ask Gibson Guitar, which has been nearly forced out of business by our DOJ... or better yet, ask President Obama's own Jobs Czar,
... Jeffrey Immelt, recently inked a deal for his corporation, G.E., to partner up with Communist Red China, in a deal which will require closing plants in America, and sending them, and their thousands of jobs, to China
... dontcha think that maybe his own Jobs Czar could tell the president why factories are picking up and moving overseas? If he cared? If?

Add to that the federal requirements that businesses appease unions, provide unsustainable pensions, meet minimum wages (based on nothing more than a politicians finger in the air guess at what will please the most inattentive of voters, and which reduces available jobs for teens, unskilled immigrants, minorities, etc), and of course the crown jewel, the Progressive Income Tax, and you have an engraved invitation for businesses to leave our shores for friendlier ones.

President Obama speaks with a twinkle in his eye about how Teddy Roosevelt's speech was greeted by the press at the time,
"Now, for this, Roosevelt was called a radical. He was called a socialist -- (laughter) -- even a communist. But today, we are a richer nation and a stronger democracy because of what he fought for"
Think about what has been done to us, by us - are we really a stronger nation because of policies which drive our own business people form our shores? Or are we instead a nation that has been weakened, more divided? Look around you... what do you see? And when they said of his speech that it sounded communistic or socialistic, do you really suppose they were just being pissy? Or is it instead maybe, possibly, that they had a reason for those evaluations? This is, after all, a half-century before the oh-so horrifying 'McCarthy Era', so why would they have such concerns about TR's speech? Maybe it is because they foresaw, having actually read what Karl Marx had to say, that TR's proposals match up very closely with the ideals of those of the Communist Party, especially on points such as #2 on Marx's Top Ten list for transforming a nation into a communist one:

  • "A heavy progressive or graduated income tax"
, and #10

  • "Free education for all children in public schools."
And no, of course I don't have a problem with all children becoming educated - believe me, that Is My Focus! - but that isn't what Marx wanted either, the reason why Marx wanted it, was for the State to do the educating, because he knew that if the state can control what children are taught... those children are going to grow up with some very state friendly thoughts in their heads, or at the very least they're going to come away from such a school with an inability to think too clearly about anything else.

And of course there's #1 on Marx's list, what he himself said his entire philosophy could be boiled down to, the

  • "Abolition of property in land and application of all rents of land to public purposes."
, and #7,

  • "Extension of factories and instruments of production owned by the State"
, these and the other items in Marx's Top Ten Hit Parade, have already been effectively accomplished, or very nearly so, via regulatory agencies. Remember, the goal of communism is for the State to control all of the means of production - if the State controls what decisions can, and cannot, be made... then the State does control the means of production, in terms of what really matters.

That is why the people of 1910 were calling Teddy Roosevelt a communist and a socialist and a thug... and the realization of what this new nationalism held out to the would-be tyrant, would prove to be formative stuff for some scruffy community organizers around the world who would soon come to the fore in the 1920's and 1930's in Italy and Germany. Is there some reason why I should hesitate in seeing Barrack Obama in that same light? These newspapermen were people who still had knowledge of the founding of America, some even had grandparents who knew people of the Founder's Era, they saw the stark contrast and contradictions between the ideas America were founded upon, and what Teddy Roosevelt's 'New Nationalism' signified.

The Pro-Regress of Progressives
The more level headed people of 1910 knew that these steps being proposed by Teddy Roosevelt, were not steps forward, they were not progress, not in the least. For instance,
"William J. Barnes, Jr., the New York Republican committeeman against whom Roosevelt was contesting for leadership in the Empire state, announced that the speech "had startled all thoughtful men and impressed them with the frightful danger which lies in his political ascendancy."
, or as the papers said,
"The next day newspaper editors across the country reacted to the speech, while in the following weeks the mails were crammed with letters recording various sentiments about the Osawatomie address. The ideologically conservative New York Evening Post branded Roosevelt a "self-seeking, hypocritical, braggart," while its sister journal, the Sun, reported that "the third greatest crisis in the history of the nation has arrived, and warned every honest and patriotic citizen to prepare himself against this new Napoleon who deemed it his mission…to overthrow and destroy in the name of public opinion and…personal advancement." The New York Tribune called the speech "frankly socialistic...""
But this might be best summed up in a way that would make President Barack Obama, Sen. John McCain and Newt Gingrich feel proud,
"The Kansas City Star, Chicago Daily Tribune, Topeka Daily Capital, and a host of lesser progressive journals agreed that Roosevelt had left no doubt about where he stood. "T.R. has become a progressive Republican,"
What did (does) pro(re)gressivism mean? What distinguished them from their hotter communist and socialist brethren, was that they were not for revolutionary change, but for slow, incremental proregress, steps that would transform a nation so gradually - over a century say - that they wouldn't realize what they'd lost until it was long, long gone. President Obama says,
...there’s been a raging debate over the best way to restore growth and prosperity, restore balance, restore fairness. Throughout the country, it’s sparked protests and political movements -- from the tea party to the people who’ve been occupying the streets of New York and other cities. It’s left Washington in a near-constant state of gridlock. It’s been the topic of heated and sometimes colorful discussion among the men and women running for president. (Laughter.)
But, Osawatomie, this is not just another political debate. This is the defining issue of our time. This is a make-or-break moment for the middle class, and for all those who are fighting to get into the middle class. Because what’s at stake is whether this will be a country where working people can earn enough to raise a family, build a modest savings, own a home, secure their retirement.
He is correct about this much, that 'This is the defining issue of our time. ', the claim that it is progress to give up 'primitive freedoms', in favor of guaranteed privileges (to be doled out by bureaucrats), that it is progress to give up the risk of making your own decisions, in favor of the assured regularity of receiving known handouts, to not only settle, but to never even strive, not even once, for a distant goal worth accomplishing... in favor of a prepared place for you, for your child, in the 'middle class'.

Is that really progress?

The man who had to clean up after Teddy Roosevelt and his proregressive successor, Woodrow Wilson, the man who repealed much of their machinations and so gave us a prosperity so spectacular that it was called 'The Roaring Twenties', that man, President Calvin Coolidge, was not fooled into thinking such things were in any way progress. He was not fooled into thinking that such 'gifts of government' were anything other than chains with lace draped over them, nothing more than centralized power in the guise of administrators who want to 'help you' live as they dictate you should. As Coolidge said in his speech "The Inspiration of the Declaration of Independence',

"About the Declaration there is a finality that is exceedingly restful. It is often asserted that the world has made a great deal of progress since 1776, that we have had new thoughts and new experiences which have given us a great advance over the people of that day, and that we may therefore very well discard their conclusions for something more modern. But that reasoning can not be applied to this great charter. If all men are created equal, that is final. If they are endowed with inalienable rights, that is final. If governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed, that is final. No advance, no progress can be made beyond these propositions. If anyone wishes to deny their truth or their soundness, the only direction in which he can proceed historically is not forward, but backward toward the time when there was no equality, no rights of the individual, no rule of the people. Those who wish to proceed in that direction can not lay claim to progress. They are reactionary. Their ideas are not more modern, but more ancient, than those of the Revolutionary fathers."
Think of that, think on that... and then make an effort to keep these three things in mind about the 'New Nationalism' of the proregressive left, and right, that:

  1. President Obama is today praising Teddy Roosevelt.
  2. That Newt Gingrich, like John McCain before him, admire Teddy Roosevelt.
  3. That you might soon have to choose between Barack Obama or Newt Gingrich, in order to save us from proregressivism.
Freedom of choice... ain't it grand?

(Head. Banging. On. Table.)

Why ask why
As I said, there were reasons, very good reasons for characterizing TR, and Obama, as communistic and socialistic, and those reasons hold as true today, as they did yesterday and yesteryear, and a significant part of it boils down to their presumption that the Govt should have the power to take precedence over your choices, over your Individual Rights, in order to do what it thinks is right for you. The proregressive, whether of the left or right, has a fundamental antaganism to the Principle of Individual Rights.

See if you can catch the theme in this contrasting of some points from Obama's speech on the new old nationalism, and a letter which Thomas Jefferson wrote to a friend at the dawn of the original Americanism:
The New NationalismA Time To ChooseThe Original Americanism
“Theodore Roosevelt... busted up monopolies, forcing those companies to compete for consumers with better services and better prices. And today, they still must....

There are also limits on the size of banks and new abilities for regulators to dismantle a firm that is going under. The new law bans banks from making risky bets with their customers’ deposits, and it takes away big bonuses and paydays from failed CEOs, while giving shareholders a say on executive salaries....

It will require parents to get more involved in their children’s education. It will require students to...

And in 1910, Teddy Roosevelt came here to Osawatomie and he laid out his vision for what he called a New Nationalism. “Our country,” he said, “…means nothing unless it means the triumph of a real democracy…of an economic system under which each man shall be guaranteed the opportunity to show the best that there is in him.” (Applause.)”

Our legislators are not sufficiently apprized of the rightful limits of their powers: that their true office is to declare and enforce only our natural rights and duties, and to take none of them from us.
No man has a natural right to commit aggression on the equal rights of another; and this is all from which the laws ought to restrain him: every man is under the natural duty of contributing to the necessities of the society; and this is all the laws should enforce on him: and, no man having a natural right to be the judge between himself and another, it is his natural duty to submit to the umpirage of an impartial third.
When the laws have declared and enforced all this, they have fulfilled their functions, and the idea is quite unfounded, that on entering into society we give up any natural right. The trial of every law by one of these texts, would lessen much the labors of our legislators, and lighten equally our municipal codes.
Thomas Jefferson, Letter to Francis W. Gilmer, 7 Jun 1816
TR and Obama both attempt to sound reluctant to have to exert Govt power, but that 'Gosh Darn it! Somebody's got to stand up for the little guy, and against the BIG moneyed interests!' But the funny thing is, the more they 'stand up for the little guy', the more power and wealth the politically well connected seem to accumulate. Ironic, eh? Well... no, not really, and when you come right down to it, the only protection the little guy truly has, as Jefferson alludes to above, is that of the Law, a law that is applied fairly, impartially, to all, regardless of their station in life. And that is something that cannot be maintained in a regulatory state.

Cannot. Regulatory law has to fundamentally assume that some people are prone to violating the rights of others and so must be presumed guilty, or it must presume to favor those the regulators must rely upon for their positions. What do I mean by that?

Back at the dawn of the Regulatory Age, when asked by the President of the Chicago, Burlington, and Quincy railroad, Charles E. Pickering, if he'd shutter the first prototype regulatory agency, the Interstate Commerce Commission, the Attorney General Richard Olney, replied that

"The Commission . . . is, or can be made, of great use to the railroads. It satisfies the popular clamor for a government supervision of the railroads, at the same time that that supervision is almost entirely nominal. Further, the older such a commission gets to be, the more inclined it will be found to take the business and railroad view of things. . . . The part of wisdom is not to destroy the Commission, but to utilize it."
IOW, the regulatory agencies found that if the railroads played ball with them, they could make each other's lives easier. Regulatory agencies have always, from the very beginning, been about making it possible for those in power to do things their way, and those who were rich enough and powerful enough to be of use and play ball, could benefit from their power to control others.

And that didn't change as the regulatory tide had swept the land and taken more solid shape. Liberal icon, famed attorney Clarence Darrow, of the Scopes Monkey Trial, was asked during the 1930's to investigate FDR's National Recovery Act, he found that,
"...In virtually all the codes we have examined, one condition has been present... In industry after industry, the larger units, sometimes through the agency of a trade association, sometimes by other means, have for their own advantage written the codes, and then, in effect and for their own advantage, assumed the administration of the code they have framed...."
Regulatory Law, is about gathering, controlling and exerting, power. Nothing more. And certainly it is not doing what it does for the benefit of the 'little guy'.

What position did, and does, the little guy have in that machinery of the regulatory state?


For all their rhetoric about equality, the one area where their 'fairness' means unfairness, is the one area where the original understanding of American thought was most essential - equality before the law, without regard for race, class or wealth - and that doesn't mean equality for the person of modest means and less than equal status for the person of mucho means - or vice versa - it means, and must mean, equality before the law for all, regardless of their means.

Lose that... and you lose Justice, and then all is lost. Read the quote by Jefferson above and to the right - compare it to the snippets by Obama to the left - can you conceive of those sentiments co-existing in a legislative and judicial system? In a single person's heart and mind?

No, it isn't possible. As Jefferson put it in the letter above,
"Our legislators are not sufficiently apprized of the rightful limits of their powers: that their true office is to declare and enforce only our natural rights and duties, and to take none of them from us."
The Proregressive cannot exist without disregarding the natural rights of other men, to be a proregressive, is to be opposed to the fundamental ideals of Americanism -  proregressivism requires favoritism, it can’t even pretend anything less... just as ‘the 99%’ - and I pity the po' fool who tries to tell himself he can be both.

A System with no place left
Part of the hostility that the proregressive mind has for the Free Market, which they derogatorily call ‘Capitalism’, and which the Capitalists cluelessly go along with referring to themselves as (rather than as members of the Free Market, which is what they are), is that the Free Market has no place for them, the Free Market is not a system, it has no System and it has no place for people to guide, correct or control it. The Free Market is made up of people who are free to make their own choices about their own lives and their own activities, free to take their own risks, support their own causes and charities, and there is no place in the Free Market for those who would seek after power over their fellow man, no place for those who would like to ‘force them to be free’  in a manner that they approve of (as the grand daddy of proregressivism, Rousseau, put it).

And that is the heart’s desire of the proregressive leftist – the desire to remake your life in a way that they think is smarter, and more pleasing to them.

In their minds, you have no place in your own life, or at the very least they do not see you in the driver's seat, you take a back seat to their need to make your choices for you, they do not see you as having a right to choose your own way if it in any way conflicts with their preferences for you, because they know full and well that their way is better, more efficient for you. It's for your own good. For the greater good. Really.

In the Proregressive's view of the world, you have no place in your own life.

We even have many on the ‘right’, even in the Tea Party, who unknowingly take the same position, that BIG is bad, that big moneyed interests should be prevented from using their free speech as they see fit, that they should take a knee to those lesser funded folk, ‘little people’, who have different opinions - why should the little guy's opinion prevail over the big people's opinion? Because they want it to and because they feel it would be best.

Sauron's Ring always looks attractive to those who see themselves as being able to wield it to do good.

The charge of elitism, though often true, is a very misleading guide to locating proregressives, look instead for those, rich or poor, who feel that - for whatever reason - they know better than another, how others should be made to live their own lives.

What all of these people should wake up and realize, quickly, is that both of these groups of ‘defenders’, if successful, will destroy the only defense which anyone has against the rich and powerful – the principle of property rights and the principle of free speech. As soon as it becomes ‘law’ that those in power can violate these sacred principles ‘for the greater good’, then it is only a matter of time before the rich and powerful figure out how to spin their intentions into sounding as if it is they who best support the ‘greater good’ – ask Wickard vs Filburn, ask Kelo, ask Gibson Guitar.

The only, ONLY, defense that the little guy has against the rich and powerful, is principle, and as soon as it is chipped away at enough, it is gone – the rich and powerful will sweep you aside like dirt in what they see as being the better path, the choices that you should make, would make, if you were as informed and smart as they, they are in fact doing you a kindness by, as Rousseau put it, going out of their own way in order to, for the greater good you understand, ‘force you to be free’.

If you don’t see that simple truth in the winning smile of Barrack Obama… you know longer have I’s to see.

Take a look at Obama’s speech, take a look at TR’s speech, and take a look at Thomas Jefferson’s speech above – TJ’s is the recipe for freedom, TR’s is the recipe for Nationalism:
“And in 1910, Teddy Roosevelt came here to Osawatomie and he laid out his vision for what he called a New Nationalism. “Our country,” he said, “…means nothing unless it means the triumph of a real democracy…of an economic system under which each man shall be guaranteed the opportunity to show the best that there is in him.” (Applause.)”
What meal does that recipe cook up?
The gathering idea of Nationalism which Teddy Roosevelt championed, was developed further by others around the world, and by the 1920's and 1930's, it took on very disturbing and world shaking form in Europe in particular. But even without those extremes, it can only lead to pretexts for exerting power to further the interests of those in power - especially at the expense of 'the little guy'.

Keep in mind, that whatever it is that these hucksters tell you they are cooking up for your benefit, it always comes down to decay, destruction and disaster in the end - ladies and gentlemen... look at Detroit!

Remember that the person who can, and will, say this:
"For the first time in history, the reforms that we passed put in place a consumer watchdog who is charged with protecting everyday Americans from being taken advantage of by mortgage lenders or payday lenders or debt collectors. "
, is the same person who, knowing full well that the legislation, which he championed as a community organizer, which he took an active part in bullying banks (yeah, bullying banks - remember, 'Elite' can lead you into a dangerous false comfort, look for those who are seeking power over others - that is where you find proregressives) into disregarding their time tested debt to ratio calculations when determining whether someone could afford a loan, and instead lenders were forced, by govt, to allow, encourage, and cajoled into seeking a loan which long experience showed the lenders that the applicants were likely to fail, and mandate that they give them a loan.
Fannie Mae Eases Credit To Aid Mortgage Lending
Published: September 30, 1999

"In a move that could help increase home ownership rates among minorities and low-income consumers, the Fannie Mae Corporation is easing the credit requirements on loans that it will purchase from banks and other lenders.

The action, which will begin as a pilot program involving 24 banks in 15 markets -- including the New York metropolitan region -- will encourage those banks to extend home mortgages to individuals whose credit is generally not good enough to qualify for conventional loans. Fannie Mae officials say they hope to make it a nationwide program by next spring. "
The ultimate result of this insanity, and quite a bit more, was the sub prime mortgage crisis, and yet Obama, Dodd, Frank, Schummer, Clinton, have the unmitigated gall to talk about taking advantage of people! It is they, and their socialistic, proregressive cronies, who want to abolish property rights in order to control all property; it is they who not only took advantage of people, but put their economic lives, and the well being of the entire nation, even the world as it turns out, at risk, in order to promote their proregressive agenda.

This man, and all like him, left or right, elitist or populist, are liars. Dissemblers. A person who is quite happy to go about deliberately misleading people, and twisting well known history, in order to score political points... is doing it for a reason... do you really think you are going to benefit from it?

What it comes down to, as President Obama said, is a choice between Nationalism... or Americanism - which will you choose?

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

A day that will live in infamy....

Just a thought for those of us preoccupied by our various issues, primaries, elections, how breaking up is hard to do... they're real, they're important, sure - but they don't really amount to all that much, at least not in comparison to what happened seventy years ago today.

When the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, it wasn't the sort of thing which the press today calls a crisis, every other day. This was a real clash of cultures. This was a day that truly will live in infamy, a day that saw two thousand four hundred and two people slaughtered, and which led us into four years of war and the loss of millions of lives worldwide.

Sometimes you need a bit of perspective... today is a fine day to get it.

Get a grip people.

Remember... it truly can get worse.

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

The Tea Pot Boils Over....

By now it's likely that you heard of a schism in the St. Louis Tea Party.

People I know and trust on both sides of an issue have come to deep disagreement over events arising out of a primary, in my district btw, dividing (amongst those who have divided) roughly along the lines of the primary founders of the St. Louis Tea Party, several siding with Dana Loesch on one side, and several with Bill Hennessy on the other; aligning along differing inclinations over how best to apply their shared principles, each thinks the other has behaved inappropriately. I have no way of knowing the details , and so I won't venture a comment on them, but the situation has left the rest of us who haven't chosen sides - Adam Sharp of SharpElbows, Patch Adams of Po'ed Patriot, myself, and others, shaking our heads, blinking and looking at each other muttering
"WTF just happened?!"
I want to say that I believe the best of both sides and think each sides worst suspicions about the other are probably wide of the mark, misinterpretations or flat out wrong. If I'm a fool for thinking that... which part is the most foolish? And... if I'm a fool to believe one, why am I not a fool to believe the other? If it's foolish to deny the one, why isn't it foolish to deny the other?

I'm pretty sure that the others standing around with me in the aftermath are thinking much the same thing. I also couldn't help thinking of this, my first lunch with radicals (wish I had a picture of that afternoon!)

But whatever the facts actually are (and I'm not all that convinced that those involved actually know them either, but seriously, now that it's too late to matter, I'd just assume not hear the details), I suspect that the real issue is that an actual organization was formed where none should have been, and because it was, trouble followed.

At heart the Tea Party is fundamentally opposed to unconstitutional, expansive government and the abuse of power, and for the rule of law which preserves and upholds individual rights & property rights, through adherence to our Constitution.

Perhaps it should have been left there. Forming a political organization ultimately demands positions be taken for one candidate or another... and that has to, at some point, turn the organization, via the unavoidably differing opinions of it's members, against itself. IOW this was coming for some time, and if not on this issue, certainly another one would have presented itself.

There are other's, such as the proregressive conservative (said with a wink), Patrick Tuohey, of The Missouri Record who thinks,
"So why haven't they taken up his cause? If the Tea Party movement doesn't rally around candidates like Martin, what has been the point of the last three years? If the St. Louis activists staked a claim in party politics in New York's 23rd, why not in Missouri's 2nd?"
, leaving aside his question about the 23rd - action wasn't taken for what'shisname, but was directed against the proregressive rino 'republican' promoted by Newt Gingrich.

And that, off the top of my head, at this moment in time, is what I think the point is - the Tea Party, to the extent that it acts as a group, should be about drawing attention to problems, promoting relevant information, and educating people about our history and important ideas.

Campaigns and campaigning, should, IMHO, be left to individuals to promote those they feel strongly about, as individuals supporting Tea Party ideals, but NOT as members of 'THE Tea Party'.

Ok, enough.

So Now What?
Well... some pondering needs to take place. One starting point might be where we began, such as what I said back as the Tea Party was taking shape: don't waste time trying to plan and organize for a candidate, inform, publicize and where appropriate, criticize - loudly, far and wide - do that and those worthy of support, will gain support from those inclined to support them based upon what they've learned about them

When I was saying something similar to this:
"...maybe it’s best left in its natural decentralized structures as they are now, each ‘chapter’ communicating, debating, but putting their own public pressure on their local pol’s… kind of a new situation we need to give some thought to.

We shouldn’t lose sight of the fact that we have had many, many political parties, and presidents elected under them… Whigs, Federalists, Democratic-Republican, Know Nothings (!)… but in this current political climate, I just can’t see it being helpful or successful – better to have people who are united on principles, though not necessarily on their application (remember Madison & Hamilton agreed on principles, but violently disagreed on applying them), finding, screening and nailing or promoting, candidates through the existing parties..."
, and down in the comments, an idea I like a lot, but haven't had the time to develop,

"My current, though not thoroughly thought out sense is, that there needs to be something along the lines of a "Consumer Reports' organization, vocally educating and agitating for, particular measures - some activities and measures that cannot be tolerated - and some which must be enacted - and which will support or fight against any politician as they align for or against those measures."
.. though... obviously... that last turns out to be rather problematic.

If you've got any ideas on the subject... I'd love to hear them.

But Adam Sharp of SharpElbows had an interesting idea earlier today:
!'m starting my own Tea Party.
It's called "the If you mention a primary or primary candidate in my presence I'll punch you in the F**king face TEA PARTY"

Who's with me?
I think most of us are Adam.


Patch Adams of Po'ed Patriot has another:

Taking a long break...

Me? Got some reading to do. But I've been doing that here for about six years... so... more of the same, I guess.

One last thought for the night
Interestingly, I've been watching some other conservative oriented groups forming what each accuses the other of, 'forming a circular firing squad', and I couldn't help thinking of a couple lines from a Harry Potter movie (hey, sometimes you get Aeschylus from me, sometimes J.K. Rowling - deal with it), from a scene when Harry has been feeling wronged and was withdrawing from his friends:
Luna Lovegood: [about her father] We believe you, by the way. That He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named is back, and you fought him, and the Ministry and the Prophet are conspiring against you and Dumbledore.
Harry Potter: Thanks. Seems you're about the only ones that do.
Luna Lovegood: I don't think that's true. But I suppose that's how he wants you to feel.
Harry Potter: What do you mean?
Luna Lovegood: Well if I were You-Know-Who, I'd want you to feel cut off from everyone else. Because if it's just you alone you're not as much of a threat.
Take a short breather folks, reflect, but remember, in one form or another, we must regroup around the ideas that we are for, if for no other reason than for the fact that He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named doesn't want us to.