#1, if you are thinking that you should ‘Give the benefit of the doubt' to the people occupying Wall Street, or Occupying St. Louis, etc, then you first need to stop, and read Po’ed Patriot’s post on the thuggish reality behind them.
Then with that out of the way, I think we need to head towards the sound of the guns, by concentrating more on asking questions, than replying to them, because, to paraphrase Winston Churchill,
“We are a people separated from ourselves by a common language”.The words and terms we’ve been taught to use to think with, are in the main, incorrect, do not convey what we expect them to, and in too many cases do not even apply anymore.
We think of Leftists as Liberals - they are not.
We are taught to think of ourselves as a Democracy – we are not.
We are taught to think that Capitalism is what our economic system has always been... it is not.
Or... at least, the system which most Tea Party Conservatives refer to when we think of Capitalism, is our traditional economic system, but what most other people think of when they think of Capitalism, is a relatively new innovation that has been destroying our true economic system for the last hundred years.
We began this nation with our Founding Fathers as Liberals, True Liberals, meaning those who believe that Man, if Educated (not degree’d, Educated – two very different things) and Virtuous, is capable of self-government, capable of living their lives in Liberty, and capable of interacting with each other in a Free Market. The Free Market was once thought of as the very defining term, expression and accomplishment, of being a Liberal! The nature of our original economic system, was that it wasn't really a system at all, there was no place in it for government, except to uphold the law, enforce legal contracts and collar the criminals - our 'system' was simply the result of free people interacting with each other without being under the thumb of the policies or payoffs and manipulations typically imposed upon a people by one king or another.
Our system was never referred to as ‘Capitalism’, until it’s arch-enemy, Karl Marx. named it that!
That can’t be good, can it?
No, no it can’t be good. We are a nation of ideas, and the main battleground we've always fought upon has been that of whether or not man is capable of living his own life, and if not, could he really be capable of ordering the life of another? It is the idea that drove people to come here. It was the cause of the Revolution. It was the driving force behind the Civil War. Our greatest mistake has been to think that once the Revolution was over, and the Constitution ratified and Slavery done away with, that that battle was over.
The battle has been raging all along, and is still going on today, but it has moved off the physical battlefields, where the enemy could not win, and it moved into our own minds... where we didn't even realize we were being attacked. Our words, phrases, concepts and themes have been the tanks, planes, aircraft carriers and geographic strongholds of this war - and we have been conceding nearly every one of them.
Occupy Your Own Street - It Is The Fight You Can Fight, Now!
An organizer for the communist youth league, recently told Patch Adams, of Po’ed Patriot... after attempting to dump out a cartload of Marxist manure at his site, that
"I in my heart believe that the majority of Americans believe the same thing despite their understanding that we call that socialism."Well, in my heart, I’m quite certain that Americans believe no such thing, but the labels they’ve been given to use, lead them, like a trail of bread crumbs, down a false trail and to a place where “X” marks the spot, and Socialism is what's on the nameplate at that address.
But that is not either our home or our destination. Knock on that door, my friend, and Hell will be pleased to usher you in.
I’d advise against that.
So how do we begin fighting the actual battle for America? Start by getting past the words which no longer mean what we think they mean, and in fact serve to put us at odds with each other. This was driven home to me by a video one of our St. Louis people took while talking with the occupiers. Some of them, it was painfully obvious, were lost causes, but a surprising number of them had a grasp of the same ideas which we do... but because they'd bought into the re-purposed names, they were unwittingly there fighting on the side of their own enemies.
We first need to take back the questions by not using the most disputed words when asking them -we can deal with the words we use as 'answers' afterwards. Start by asking questions that don't involve the disputed ground, and start taking the fight to the enemy in your own mind and on your very own street, amongst your very own friends and relatives and neighbors. But before doing that though, there's a very key point you need to understand - this is a very strange war... if you start off by being confrontational, you lose the fight; the disputed ground succeeds in lifting the drawbridge, raising its defenses, and you never even get the opportunity to scratch it.
We can't win this with a war of words... and believe me, that goes against my grain... big time!
The only way we can get within striking distance of the real battlefield, is from the inside - and that can only be accomplished by getting our friends, relatives and neighbors, to ask some key questions of themselves - they have to fight the battle, our job is only to supply them with the ammunition to do so, and that can only be done by getting them to ask themselves the questions that will expose the enemy to the truth in their own minds.
Once that's done... it collapses. The enemy is a lie, it has no real defenses, it is utterly exposed and prostrate before the Truth... but it can only be put into that position by its unwitting defender - your friend, relative, neighbor (and possibly even yourself) - exposing it themselves, and that can only be done by their actually questioning their own premises.
Accomplish that, and the fight is as good as over, the battle won without having to be fought - Sun Tzu would like that.
So, here ya go, here are some questions to walk yourself through, and out into, the opening skirmish of the real war. Taking this ground will help put you, your friends, relatives and neighbors, onto the right path to understanding your positions correctly; do that, and the lie can be exposed. Once it is, then they will begin questioning their positions themselves, and the Truth can begin doing the work you could never have hoped to accomplish - once that happens the was is over; once these fundamentals are understood, then what words are best to use to label the answers for these questions can be argued over, harmlessly, endlessly, for years afterwards. Academics have to have something to do.
* Do you believe a person should be free to make their own choices? Should a persons life be their own?
If so, then congratulations, you've won the most important battle of all, you believe in free will, and you believe that man is capable of governing himself.
* If you actually believe in a person’s freedom to make their own choices, then you must believe in their right to retain the fruits of those choices, and their right to conduct themselves, to speak their mind freely and to assemble with those fellows they choose to, without fear of recrimination, violence, intimidation or of having their property taken from them - does that seem reasonable?
Well that is what is meant by supporting Individual Rights and Property Rights. Congratulations, you're on your way to becoming an American in more ways than simply by a certificate of live birth.
* If you believe in a person’s freedom to make their own choices and to be secure in their Individual Rights and Property, then you must also believe that people should be free to offer their services and products for the consideration of other free peoples, and if another is interested, to be free to come to an agreement for compensation with them, without fear of threats of physical force and intimidation, right?
Then congratulations again, you believe in the Right to Contract.
* Do you believe that people should have a right to make their own decisions about what they would like to eat, wear, shelter, protect, read, adorn or amuse themselves with? Do you believe that people should be free to exchange with other people, for some mutually agreed to amount of their own property, for those items? Do you believe that they should be free to do so without the threat of intimidation and physical force by either party or from some third party?
Then congratulations, you believe in the Free Market.
* Do you believe that anyone who threatens to, or who actually exerts force to compel people to act against their own wishes, or who robs or swindles them of what is theirs, or to otherwise deliberately or negligently injure or endanger them, do you believe that they should be fined and or imprisoned - No Matter WHO they are or what their position in society, business or government, is?
Then congratulations, you believe in the Rule of Law.
* Do you believe that people in a society should be able to agree upon general norms of conduct, and to establish laws to uphold and defend their lives, rights and property from the abuse of anyone else, foreign or domestic? Do you believe that these rules and laws should be written and publicly accessible to all, and that no one should be able to improperly alter or manipulate those rules and laws for their personal benefit?
Then congratulations, you believe in a Western form of government.
* Do you believe that it is the responsibility of those in that society who are protected by that government, to aid in supporting that government? That there can be no right to not support the institution which defends and upholds the Rights of everyone in that society?
Then congratulations, you believe that there is no right to evade proper taxation (yeah, well... some Rights are more enjoyable than others... but unfortunately no less necessary!).
* Do you believe that no one should be able to abuse another, intimidate them, force them to act against their will or to take what rightly belongs to another? Do you believe that simply having a majority of the people present saying that they'd like to abuse another person in that way, does not make it okay to do so? Do you believe that even if that majority of the people REALLY wants to, and even writes it down as a rule that it's now okay to abuse a particular person or people, because a majority of the people agree that they REALLY want to do it; do you believe that even then, such a thing would still be wrong and so must not be allowed to be done?
Then congratulations, you DO NOT believe in a Democracy, what you believe in is called a Republic, and only in a Republic is the person, rights and property of a minority, protected by law.
* Do you believe that members of a community should be able to choose from those amongst themselves who they believe are best suited to maintaining, amending or writing new laws, and to represent them in their government?
Then congratulations, what you believe in is a Constitutional Representative Republic, and your ideas are compatible with being a Citizen of the United States of America.
* Do you believe in the "Abolition of private property"? You do? EHHHhhhh... Ooh, sorry, sorry, no, if you believe in that, or any obfuscatory way of edging towards that, then you reject every one of the preceding points above; if you believe that, then you are a Communist, and no matter your best of intentions - which were also doubtlessly shared by those who supported and formed the USSR, Mao's Red China, Pol Pot's Cambodia, etc - then your system will result in nothing but death and destruction because violence, and the threat of it, the abandonment of objective law and true rights, the abolishment of contract and even the denial of the potential of individual human worth, is what must follow from your best intentions, as Hell always does.
I think if we lose hold of these questions... then there will be no battles left to win.Why?
Because what results from asking the preceding questions, is the only known way, to secure to each individual the right to engage in life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, on their own terms, and the only known, proven, method for structuring such a government, is the Constitution of the United States of America.
The reasons for why that is, can be found in a quote from John Adams, which I've noted often in the past, when he was helping to more clearly define the purpose of a Republic for his fellow Founding Fathers, that the purpose of a Republic, was the protection of Property Rights:
"...the original meaning of the word republic could be no other than a government in which the property of the people predominated and governed; and it had more relation to property than liberty. It signified a government, in which the property of the public, or people, and of every one of them, was secured and protected by law. This idea, indeed, implies liberty; because property cannot be secure unless the man be at liberty to acquire, use, or part with it, at his discretion, and unless he have his personal liberty of life and limb, motion and rest, for that purpose. It implies, moreover, that the property and liberty of all men, not merely of a majority, should be safe; for the people, or public, comprehends more than a majority, it comprehends all and every individual; and the property of every citizen is a part of the public property, as each citizen is a part of the public, people, or community. The property, therefore, of every man has a share in government, and is more powerful than any citizen or party of citizens; it is governed only by the law...."And through his extensive study of history, he found that the reason for this is, that
"The moment the idea is admitted into society, that property is not as sacred as the laws of God, and that there is not a force of law and public justice to protect it, anarchy and tyranny commence. If "Thou shalt not covet," and "Thou shalt not steal," were not commandments of Heaven, they must be made inviolable precepts in every society, before it can be civilized or made free."What Adams and many others of the time realized, was that without a solid support for property rights, no other rights are even possible, and if these questions are not understood, no amount of legislation can uphold or enforce them.
And with that in mind, it is equally important to note that Karl Marx felt that the most important, distinguishing aspect of his theory of Communism, was one that he could sum up very simply, he said that:
" In this sense, the theory of the Communists may be summed up in the single sentence: Abolition of private property."That goal, the abolition of private property, is the purpose behind the methods of communism, of socialism, of progressivism and of fascism, they differ from each other only in their styles of governing, and how quickly and fully they feel they can proceed towards their shared ultimate goal of abolishing private property. Whatever good intentions they and their supporters may have, the fact is, as it has played out again and again in history, from the USSR to Cambodia and all points in between, their schemes will bring only death and destruction, because the target of their power - private property and the mutual respect for it - is the only thing which can make it possible for people to live together in freedom.
The path Marx beckons you down doesn't end well. It never has, it never will. If you choose this thing, Then you will lose your liberty and loose death and destruction across the land.
Wake up America, talk to your friends and neighbors, Occupy your own mind, Occupy your own street! You have the greatest political treasure of all the ages right here in your hands, right now, the United States Constitution, help your friends, relatives and neighbors to understand it by thinking through the questions that led to it, and then learn to use it... or lose it.