Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Govt Healthcare Bill - Those who do not remember the past, are doomed to repeat it.

The Presence of the Past

We should keep that phrase in mind whenever we hear, often from those who are likeminded with us, maybe even from ourselves, that the current state of affairs is unprecedented. When we hear how unprecedented it is that a President should try to limit the pay of CEO's and other executives... you should be aware that FDR did the same and more. He didn't operate under the fig leaf that the acceptance of bailout money justified his actions... he just limited the pay of all executives. Period.

When you hear of Govt pushing it's policies and propaganda, enforcing it on the people... whether through 'green jobs', or telling people who they can sell to and at what price, as with today's healthcontrol bills, we should think back to FDR's inflating the idea of interstate commerce to cover any transaction that MIGHT involve materials and prices between states, such as his administrations suit against a farmer who dared to raise some crops for his own families usage, despite govt regulations against it.

We should think of Wilson APL (American Protective League), Palmer Raids and more, as well as FDR's 'Blue Eagle' programs that bullied Americans into buying and selling only from or through approved outlets who supported govt policies.

We should think of hundreds of thousands of Americans imprisoned for opposing the policies of Wilson's administration.

When we hear of emergency bills being rushed through congress and mutter about this being unprecedented, we should think of FDR's forcing through a bill, unread, through congress, in the dead of night, because of 'the need to act now!', we should think of things like FDR's seizure of the citizens Gold. When we hear of assurances from govt that "this is temporary" or "that is fear mongering, and will never happen!", we should think of how the Dollar Bill went from 'Redeemable of one dollar of Silver', to... being redeemable for... nothing (see the pictures above, of a paper note redeemable for money, to a paper note which we pretend is just as useful as money).

When we hear of legislators laughing at questions such as "Where in the constitution is govt authorized to do any of this?!", we should recall Supreme Court Justice McReynolds, lamenting as he read his dissent to the courts ok'ing FDR's gold clause cases "this is Nero at his worst. The Constitution is gone."

We have incrementally lost our freedom and liberty, lost the precious protection of a nation of Laws, not men (tyrants), because we allowed our educational x-spurts to downplay and denigrate the classical humanities, history, literature, in favor of 'educating' students to 'get a job' - very few of us realize that the core meaning at the center of that policy shift, is to ignore those lessons that the past could teach us, (because they could teach us - read Dewey) and we are condemned to not only repeat the same errors as before, but in doing so we submit ourselves to the power of those who don't care whether their desires and power lust is beneficial or destructive, for them it is sufficient that they want it and want it to 'do good'.

In 1848, de Tocqueville, demanded, in the French Parliament, that they bring the true topic of their discussions out into the open, that they name the forces they were playing with. He insisted that the issues be identified and discussed. He dared to identify the proregressive policies, and choose. This is from his speech, the bracketed words are the reactions from the members of parliament listening to his speech:
"Now, the first characteristic of all socialist ideologies is, I believe, an incessant, vigorous and extreme appeal to the material passions of man. [Signs of approval.]

Thus, some have said: “Let us rehabilitate the body”; others, that “work, even of the hardest kind, must be not only useful, but agreeable”; still others, that “man must be paid, not according to his merit, but according to his need”; while, finally, they have told us here that the object of the February Revolution, of socialism, is to procure unlimited wealth for all.

A second trait, always present, is an attack, either direct or indirect, on the principle of private property. From the first socialist who said, fifty years ago, that “property is the origin of all the ills of the world,” to the socialist who spoke from this podium and who, less charitable than the first, passing from property to the property-holder, exclaimed that “property is theft,” all socialists, all, I insist, attack, either in a direct or indirect manner, private property. [“True, true.”] I do not pretend to hold that all who do so, assault it in the frank and brutal manner which one of our colleagues has adopted. But I say that all socialists, by more or less roundabout means, if they do not destroy the principle upon which it is based, transform it, diminish it, obstruct it, limit it, and mold it into something completely foreign to what we know and have been familiar with since the beginning of time as private property. [Excited signs of assent.]

Now, a third and final trait, one which, in my eyes, best describes socialists of all schools and shades, is a profound opposition to personal liberty and scorn for individual reason, a complete contempt for the individual. They unceasingly attempt to mutilate, to curtail, to obstruct personal freedom in any and all ways. They hold that the State must not only act as the director of society, but must further be master of each man, and not only master, but keeper and trainer. [“Excellent.”] For fear of allowing him to err, the State must place itself forever by his side, above him, around him, better to guide him, to maintain him, in a word, to confine him. They call, in fact, for the forfeiture, to a greater or less degree, of human liberty, [Further signs of assent.] to the point where, were I to attempt to sum up what socialism is, I would say that it was simply a new system of serfdom. [Lively assent.] "

The republicans and so called 'conservatives', are approaching this healthcontrol bill from the proregressives turf, and with their values and goals. They speak of how their plan will ensure more people, and for less cost, completely unawares, apparently, that such a rebuttal concedes the principles of the argument to the leftist proregressive. It concedes that, as de Tocqueville put it,

"... an incessant, vigorous and extreme appeal to the material passions of man..."

was a perfectly acceptable focus and concern for govt to take and secure.
When they complain that the proposed govt 'Shalls', fee's, fines and taxations to force people to become insured, are too excessive. It concedes as acceptable that it is ok for govt to have, as de Tocqueville put it,

"...always present, is an attack, either direct or indirect, on the principle of private property..."

completely unaware, apparently, that such a position abandons the right of the individual to their property and choices of how it should be spent, and ultimately results in the individual having no means for exercising any Rights.

The republicans and so called 'conservatives', are seemingly concerned only with costs, unemployment and whether the economy (anybody have any idea what that entails?) might be 'hurt', but the idea that govt can have a say, any say, properly and acceptably, in the decisions of individuals and businesses as regards health care, or anything else, unaware of the control of our own lives it rips from us, and hands over to govt. It concedes a function and nature of govt as being uncontroversial, that as de Tocqueville put it,
"Now, a third and final trait, one which, in my eyes, best describes socialists of all schools and shades, is a profound opposition to personal liberty and scorn for individual reason, a complete contempt for the individual."

So called republicans and 'conservatives' like Newt Gingrich, have no problem speaking of a govt role in deciding our most personal choices and decisions, negating our right to be individuals, and they are clueless about what men like de Tocqueville, Jean Baptiste Say & Frédéric Bastiat, not to mention men like John Adams, Samuel Adams & Patrick Henry, saw so clearly well over a hundred and fifty years ago, that,

"...They call, in fact, for the forfeiture, to a greater or less degree, of human liberty, [Further signs of assent.] to the point where, were I to attempt to sum up what socialism is, I would say that it was simply a new system of serfdom. [Lively assent.] "
If we argue with the leftists on their own turf, the materialist concerns of benefits, working conditions, pay, goodies; we will lost. We will lose, because they will always be willing to offer more pleasure, and we have only pain to offer in that realm, responsibility, self reliance, hard work, patience - who, with no further knowledge or cares, is going to choose stale bread over Twinkies?

The argument MUST be over Individual Rights, they absolute dependence upon Property Rights for the existence of ANY Rights, and the structure, purpose and meaning of the United States Constitution.

Any damn fool who argues for electing candidates with an "R" after their names ("A RINO is better than no R at all."), rather than candidates who stand for the principles of Americanism, is only arguing for the forces of anti-Americanism, but a new system of serfdom - and if you look at the comments under that stupid post, the Tea Party people are very, very much aware that an "R" is worthless, without the principles it supposedly stands for, and they intend to target such RINO's for extinction.

Please God, let there be "Lively assent" from the American people, to that. In that same speech, de Tocqueville, humorously suggested that his plague of socialists try their ideas out on Americans, confident that they would be ignored at worst, more likely roundly thumped for their foolishness,

"I mentioned a while ago that socialism pretended to be the legitimate continuation of democracy. I myself will not search, as some of my colleagues have done, for the real etymology of this word, democracy. I will not, as was done yesterday, rummage around in the garden of Greek roots to find from whence comes this word. [Laughter.] I look for democracy where I have seen it, alive, active, triumphant, in the only country on earth where it exists, where it could possibly have been established as something durable in the modern world—in America. [Whispers.]

There you will find a society where social conditions are even more equal than among us; where the social order, the customs, the laws are all democratic; where all varieties of people have entered, and where each individual still has complete independence, more freedom than has been known in any other time or place; a country essentially democratic, the only completely democratic republics the world has ever known. And in these republics you will search in vain for socialism. Not only have socialist theories not captured public opinion there, but they play such an insignificant role in the intellectual and political life of this great nation that they cannot even rightfully boast that people fear them.

America today is the one country in the world where democracy is totally sovereign. It is, besides, a country where socialist ideas, which you presume to be in accord with democracy, have held least sway, the country where those who support the socialist cause are certainly in the worst position to advance them I personally would not find it inconvenient if they were to go there and propagate their philosophy, but in their own interests, I would advise them not to. [Laughter.] "
That was during a time when the proregressive elite had yet to break into our educational system, when We The People still saw socialism as the foul, immoral, evil it is, they didn't yet accept any notions of materialist goodies as having more value than the real concept of Liberty; and they still knew that Liberty rested squarely upon constitutionally delimited government and Property Rights.

That has nearly been diseducated out of us. Why? Because as John Adams said, in a work well known to virtually all of the Framers of the Constitution, and most Educated (mostly at home) Americans afterwards, this from his report on a constitution for Massachusetts, "Dissertation on the Canon and Feudal Law", such desires to ensure that the people remain ignorant of the true meaning and scope of rights...

"...has been known by the great to be the temper of mankind; and they have accordingly labored, in all ages, to wrest from the populace, as they are contemptuously called, the knowledge of their rights and wrongs, and the power to assert the former or redress the latter. I say rights, for such they have, undoubtedly, antecedent to all earthly government,-Rights, that cannot be repealed or restrained by human laws-Rights, derived from the great Legislator of the universe."
It is our task, our responsibility, to re-Educate Americans to the timeless truths which our founders understood, and which any departure from, means nothing but reactionary ideology and regression into servitude and barbarity.

I tried to leave a comment to a post by Bad Bad JuJu (what's with the comment system there?), which he said,

"The (American) People need to understand, if the Health Care Bill is passed, it is nothing less than a government takeover of the whole health care system."
Which is very true... and worse. It really is nothing less than the repudiation of Individual Rights, Period.

It is a declaration, through taxation and decree, that govt defined x-spurts should have first say over the living and maintenance of their own lives.

What we've got to do, in the next two years, is Educate the core of the American people, to what has been de-educated out of them. The meaning of the ideas which lay behind the Constitution, and why it was written in the way it was - and to take vocal political action to restore to this land, a nation of Laws, not men.

Here's a good place to start.

It's not going to be easy... but it'll be fun to tell the grandkids about!


Anna said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anna said...

"When you hear of Govt pushing it's policies and propaganda, enforcing it on the people... whether through 'green jobs'"

Still reading the post, but this reminds me of something that has occurred to me more and more. "Going Green" does seem like those Blue Eagle days. Green products, green processes... It starts to seem like more than a popular do-good trend. It may pass out of vogue, of course, before getting too far down the road into wackiness. At first I took it as a common sense "be responsible" statement, but I've become skeptical of even that. It seems to have strings attached and something of an agenda, or a program, behind it. Great, I'm sure that just sounded paranoid, but it's not. I don't trust that it is sincere to its stated mission, whereas I once thought it was actually (at least partly) about responsibility. Reading Hayek (The Road to Serfdom) and about what went on in the days of Wilson and FDR is certainly helpful for seeing through current political attempts.

"Going Green" could become an encroachment, a coercion. Or has it already begun to be that?!!

Anna said...

Wanted to add - in other words, I have until recently thought of "green products" as one part responsibility and one part a way to get Obi elected and a way to pull people away from American political values, as ludicrous as the latter would sound to some of my friends. After recent reading - Hayek and Goldberg especially - the green cause seems less fresh, less original, and increasingly less sincere. [Not to mention the more obvious ulterior aspects of a carbon tax... taxing every breath we take and every move we make.]

And with this echo of fascism past, it is just shocking that so much of that history is not known, and that so much is being allowed to resurface. The election of Obama really was a side-swipe. People (who supported him) were in a really gullible state of mind, and still are, with utter confusion about "what they're getting" when they get "free stuff".

In the realm of economics, they have the idea that corporations and the money system have ripped away the possibility of real cause and effect economically and are SIGNING UP FOR THE SERF SYSTEM. Keynesian economics, if anything, is the culprit of the non-tautness of the cause and effect levers (the cause and effect levers sound economics requires). I've been looking into the issue of paper money and the gold standard to see if they have anything to do with the leftists' despair. It seems like they are giving up on the coefficient of responsibility and freedom. But then, maybe it's even worse - this idea of "capital" being static and in the hands of some. Well then, a complete re-education is needed in those cases.

These blog posts, here, at OC, and around (along with the ref'd and rec'd books, articles, and blogs) are extremely helpful. Never before have I been less concerned that I might not have something to read. It can be overwhelming, but I'd much rather be swimming in an ocean that parceling out drops from an almost dry creek.

Thanks for this blog and all the links with it!

Anna said...

*than parceling*...

Typos are too easy to make at 6pm while getting ready to leave after work. Argh.

xlbrl said...

Great post. No one understood so well as de Tocqueville.

"In the United States it was never intended for a man in a free country to have the right to do anything he liked; rather, social duties were imposed upon him more various than anywhere else. Where you see in France the government and in England a noble lord at the head of a great new initiative, in the United States you can count on finding an association. The favor of the people may be won by some brilliant action but the love and respect of your neighbors must be gained by a long series of small services, hidden deeds of goodness, a persistent habit of kindness, and an established reputation of selflessness.
Local freedoms, then, which induce a great number of citizens to value the affection of their neighbors and kinsfolk, bring men constantly into contact with each other and force them to help one another, in spite of the instincts which separate them. The only way opinions and ideas can be renewed, hearts enlarged, and human minds developed is through the reciprocal influence of men upon each other.

The Americans have exploited liberty in order to combat that individualism which equality produced and have overcome it. How could liberty be upheld in great matters amongst a multitude which has not learned to make use of it in small ones? The principle objective of good government is to ensure the welfare of people and not to establish a certain order at the heart of their misery.

What saddens me is, not that our society is democratic, but that the vices which we have inherited and acquired make it so difficult for us to obtain or to keep well-regulated liberty. And I know nothing so miserable as a democracy without liberty. The French are a flock of timid and industrious animals, of which the government is the shepherd.

It must not be forgotten that it is especially dangerous to enslave men in the minor details of life. Subjection in minor affairs does not drive men to resistance, but it crosses them at every turn, till they are led to surrender the exercise of their own free will.
Freedom in the big things of life is less important than in the slightest. Destroying political freedom is easy, for just loosening one’s grip is enough for it to slip away."

Excuse the total montage.

Van Harvey said...

Anna, I didn't mean to leave your comments unanswered, I had a fairly lengthy reply started, and in between getting pulled away, my laptop locked up, had to reboot and slipped from my memory (bio & silicon).

I don't have much time at the moment, but for the gist of the matter, while there certainly some people honestly looking at trying to find new forms of energy, and many people who without investigating the matter, take 'Green' sentiments at face value.

But the movement is the same chameleon that hasn't changed from it's roots in manmade glowbull warming, ozone hole depletion, Recycle or run out!, eco preservationists, nuclear power meltdown, population bomb, coming ice age, pesticide's killing us all, cigarette's are killing us all, 'inferior peoples will destroy civilization if we don't practice Eugenics'... type of alarmist pseudo science that has always been the front for various shades of marxist anti-western intentions that haven't changed in any way other than their surface presentations since they began with Rousseauian naturalism's "Noble Savage".

The movement itself is intent on pursuing one direction and one direction only, backwards - scientifically, economically, politically and intellectually.

Cap Mag has some good articles & ref's you can find in their search (one of my fav's "Celebrate Exploit-the-Earth or Die Day", but this one sums it up well,
"Environmentalists are criticizing "buying green," because at root they are against buying anything.
Anyone who thinks that it's easy being "green"—that "eco-chic" is consistent with the principles of environmentalism—had better think harder about the true nature of the ideology they are helping bring into power. Environmentalists' call for minor sacrifices for the sake of some undefined "greater good" is the first stage in their call for sacrifice as such, for no human benefit whatsoever.

It is always disintegrated pragmatic call's to action, and the collective over the individual.

"I've been looking into the issue of paper money and the gold standard to see if they have anything to do with the leftists' despair."

They have something to do with it alright, like gin to an alcoholic, and they know their fix lies with successfully the confusing and obscuring the two. Same strategy in economics, as in metaphysics... redefine, obscure, pretend what isn't, is.

ZZMike said...

"... he just limited the pay of all executives. "

The OPA - Office of Price Administration, set up by one of Obama's heroes - FDR.

Who happens to be one of Mr Putin's heroes as well:

Putin's role model

Peas in a pod: Putin & Obama.

Anna: ""Going Green" could become an encroachment, a coercion. Or has it already begun to be that?!!"

You're on to something. "Going Green", and Big Al Gore's "civilization-ending climate change" is just a cover for the real goal of dismantling American industry (can't have all that nasty pollution; you'll all be much happier riding bicycles) and turning us into another 3rd-world country.

We can see the first glimmerings of the takeover by watching the SEIU "educating" people yet unconvinced of the many benefits of the Universal (and Mandatory) Health Care Plan.

(I call ACORN the money-laundering arm of the Left, and SEIU the arm-twisting arm.)

Unless we do some serious voting - and campaigning for the upcoming elections, we'll have no-one but ourselves to blame for the real disaster that will be here by 2012.

[PS: Anyone who likes both Nassim Talib and Madeline l'Engle is OK in my book.]

Anna said...

ZZMike said...

""Going Green", and Big Al Gore's "civilization-ending climate change" is just a cover for the real goal of dismantling American industry (can't have all that nasty pollution; you'll all be much happier riding bicycles) and turning us into another 3rd-world country."

I was also thinking (after reading earlier this fall in Liberal Fascism about the FDR Blue Eagle phenom) that the Green label could be an "us" and "them" device. Peer pressure to "join the cause". The week prior to writing that comment I had seen store window after store window, commercials, and products with this sort of "join up" message. It dominated what was "okay" or "permissible" to buy... I hope it's just a fad. Mostly I got annoyed that almost every ad campaign was buzzing on the enviro plug.

But yeah, the wider issue is probably that it is an attack on industry, ergo capitalism/the free market.

Anna said...

Van, so sorry to hear about the comment-MIA. I hate it when that happens!! Thanks for the links. I'm sure they will be helpful. I haven't had a chance to check them out but will soon.