The Post In Which I Agree With Black3 And Attempt To Answer Hockeydadfla’s Question

Yet another lazy re-post from February 18, 2012:

One of our co-bloggers, hockeydad, asked Black3 how we get to something that is “conservative” and good for the country – what do we do?

I think that there is a general consensus that none of us on the right are truly satisfied with the crop of candidates this time – they all have significant flaws and are perfect examples of why this time I am settling for the ABO strategy.

So what do we do?

I’ve long proposed that any sustained political change must start at the cultural level. My belief that political change comes from cultural change is still strong and I have seen nothing to alter that belief.  I have changed my opinion about one thing – and that is salvaging the Republican Party. I have come to believe that Black3 was right all along, there is no salvaging the Republican Party as a home for classical liberals (the artists formerly known as conservatives). I’m still not all that jazzed about a third party in the short term because of the lack of resources that a third party has to compete on a national level and the contemporary history of failure of such efforts – but the position that the Republican establishment has put us in is not a good place to be.

It is clear to me that if I have to support a Republican candidate because of his supposed “electability” as the primary driver; I’m not going to be very happy with the eventual result.

Here’s what we face.

Classical liberals do not:

  • Have a voice in either major party
  • Have support in the media (the mainstream media doesn’t even understand liberty)
  • Have any meaningful organizational structure

What we do have is the Constitution, and in my mind this is a pretty significant tool.

The revolution we seek cannot be fought on a battlefield that is owned by our enemies and we have to find one where we have at least an equal chance. This will not be easy because the “progressives”/statists/secular humanists have infiltrated every area of American life. In fact, my friends, the communists that were fought and pushed back in the 50’s and 60’s have today almost won their greatest prize – America.

The “progressive” agenda has been institutionalized in the:

  • Schools – from kindergarten to graduate school, the government is there in funding, defining curriculum, setting standards, forcing the teaching of a “progressive”/secular humanist agenda – at the college level, colleges and universities are suckling at the teat of federal student loans,
  • Local governments – that beg at the federal altar for funds that have been taken from other communities
  • State governments – again that beg at the federal altar for funds that have been taken from other communities
  • Federal government – reaching into every aspect of contemporary life via a myriad of agencies, commissions, courts and legislative and executive process – there isn’t a single thing that you can touch from the time that you awake until you go to sleep that hasn’t been regulated, certified, taxed or labeled by some agency or by a private firm as a government requirement – there is a government mandate for the fluorescent light bulb you switch on in the morning to the mandated warning label on the mattress you go to sleep on – probably is one on your pillow, too.
  • Judiciary – activist judges abound, looking to foreign law for support for their “progressive” desires, one, Ruth Bader Ginsberg, who doesn’t even believe the Constitution she is sworn to uphold is worth emulating
  • Political parties – the two major parties are “progressive” at their core. Republicans are pulled to the right by movements like the Tea Party, the Democrats go left and embrace the communists and collectivists like the OWS “movement”, International ANSWER, the unions and the Communist Party USA
  • Media – “progressive” bias abounds in the major outlets
  • Churches – “progressive” orthodoxy has largely replaced the Word of God in many of the most liberal denominations and these congregations have allowed God to be replaced by the government as a spiritual authority.

Ladies and gentlemen, we are grossly outnumbered. There is a lot of inertia behind the cycle of dependence that this “progressive” agenda has created.

We are in a pattern where the government is responsible for a crisis or an unintended consequence and instead of stopping the practice that caused it, they create another program or policy to mitigate it (but they never mitigate it completely and it never goes away) and by doing so insinuate even more government presence than before. Then it becomes ingrained into our psyche and we accept more government as “normal”. Ace at AOSHQ, had a brilliant post about this syndrome last week, an example of his personal acceptance of this type of passive aggressive government integration:

I grew up on the East Coast. For a while, I lived in California.

I was blown away to learn that people could just start bonfires on the beach, whenever they liked.

Now, to be honest, I learned on this when the government was trying to crack down on the practice, but I was blown away at the idea that a private citizen could, in this country, previous to changes in this law at least, simply create a bonfire on the beach and enjoy it. Just because he wanted to.

Then I started to think like this: What kind of a mind-screw did they do on me when I should be surprised that people would be allowed to do this?

You see what I mean? My default mental state, thanks to the more statist area I grew up in (at least as far as bonfires) was that of course I wasn’t permitted by The State to build a bonfire and enjoy it.

I internalized that. My default belief, absent any external stimulus, was that of course that would be an Illegal Act, and of course I should not Break the Law.

And this is where I begin to get angry:

How much of each of our current mental landscapes are shaped by government such that we internalize the idea that the basic right to be left alone (presuming you’re not destroying other’s property) doesn’t exist?

How much of we come to accept such restrictions as “just normal”?

If you try to open a shop, how many licenses and inspections and certificates do you need?

And we all of course accept that. Of course we cannot perform a lawful trade without first securing the go-ahead of a half-dozen bureaucratic agencies.

I mean, that’s just normal, right? That’s just how it is, right?

Sixty years ago, would we have thought that was normal?

Or would we have said, “I’m sorry, are you attempting to tell me I cannot pursue a lawful trade without your… permission that I do so?!”

To what extent have we internalized that the “normal” situation of our life is to be unfree, to the extent that a simple pleasure, like building a bonfire on a beach and (get this!) drinking wine while watching it burn, seems like a bizarre indulgence of a malfunctioning anarchy?

I’m angry that someone put into my head the reflexive thought: Of course you mustn’t do that; you aren’t Allowed.

And once you’ve accepted that basic regime of requiring permission and licensing to do most everything in your life– that makes it quite easy for the state to simply begin forbidding you to do whole categories of things altogether.

After all, you’ve accepted you need a license to do this or that, and that license can only come from the government. And if the government then refuses– well, it’s up them, isn’t it? They have the right to deny you, right?

But did they?

When did they accumulate this power?

Just over the course of long decades, as a result of a thousand laws passed For the Public Good, and millions of decisions that it just wasn’t worth fighting over.

If you think about it, even the college loan example is a fitting picture how this cycle gets activated, how we just are sleepwalking into a form of slavery – Marxism – because it has become “normal”.

President Obama just said last week that “everybody should have a chance go to college” – but let’s look at how this gets accomplished. What happens is that from the first day of kindergarten, every – and I mean every – student, regardless of desire, skill or educational ability is told that in order to be successful, they must go to college. For the larger population of students, our preparatory schools are dumbed down by federal guidelines and waste time teaching things like “diversity” because the “progressives” in the education establishment also see the schools having another mission, an agent of “progressive” social change and a vehicle for social engineering. This confused mission churns out students who are grossly unprepared to progress to higher education, so much so that remedial classes and “how to study” courses are taught to a significant percentage of incoming freshmen at our institutional of higher learning.

Pardon my harshness – but if a kid has just graduated after 12 years in school and they have to be re-taught to read, do math, write coherently or be taught effective study skills, perhaps the 12 years were more about babysitting and “social change” than true learning.

So now we have kids who are not qualified for college but a society that says that the must go – no credentials and no money – no problem! Crazy Barry’s Payday Student Loans Company is here to help! Universities suck up the student loans, drawing in massive amounts of money and in many cases imparting little of value to the student -leaving them with a crippling debt and no marketable skills to earn enough money to pay the loan back and – boom! Higher education bubble, here we come! The Fannie/Freddie/Community Reinvestment Act/Dodd/Frank created home mortgage bubble worked so well as a social engineering policy, why not do it again with education, right?

Students leave high school and college unprepared for work, college students loaded with debt (the colleges are the ones who benefitted from the sweet federally guaranteed loan cash), and are underemployed or unemployable – “boom!” again – food stamps, rent assistance, unemployment insurance, federal jobs training programs, welfare, Earned Income Tax Credits, Medicare, Obamacare, etc. Welcome to government dependency – and we aren’t even talking about the welfare queens and their baby daddies here – most of these kids are from middle class homes…

We have to understand the cycle to break it – the “progressive” agenda is more than theoretical and ideological today, it has grown into a functioning leviathan that is grinding the soul of America in the cogs of a massive “Brave New World” machine, belching the combusted freedom and liberty out its exhaust pipe like diesel smoke.

That being said, there is still hope. Like Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton) in the Terminator movies said, “There is no fate but what we make”. The weak point in the “progressive” plan, the chink in the armor is not the schools, the media, the churches or the political or government structure – those are lost to us. These are too far gone, too impenetrable, too steeped in the “post-modernist” relativist logic to be redeemed.

The key to the revolution is the family.

This is the one area that the “progressives” have not gained complete control over. We still can separate our families from the outside world long enough to get their attention and teach our children about the America of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, we can still teach them about God and how we owe our natural rights to our Creator. We can still teach them self-respect, loyalty, honor, right from wrong and help them to build a conscience. We can still teach them the evils of Marxism and the benefits of self-reliance and independence. We can teach them how to manage to a budget and the satisfaction of a day’s work well done. We can teach them the TINSTAAFL Principle (there is no such thing as a free lunch).

We can teach them about philosophy, truth, logic and critical thinking – but mostly we can provide them core principles and a solid basis them to think for themselves. We have the tools – the Holy Bible, the Constitution, the Declaration of Independence, Locke, Montesquieu, de Tocqueville, Hobbes, Rousseau, Plato, and Socrates.

We aren’t going to be able to do this without our kids. Our job is to hold the line until they can come along and clean up the mess that we and the Baby Boomers have made.

It is up to us.

22 thoughts on “The Post In Which I Agree With Black3 And Attempt To Answer Hockeydadfla’s Question

  1. You’ve got me thinking of an incident with my son……….

    Son: Can you make me two sandwiches for lunch?
    Kells: Are you really that hungry?
    Son: No, this kid offered to buy one for a $1.00 from me.
    Kells: (starting to feel sorry for this child) Does he not eat lunch?
    Son: He doesn’t like the school lunch, so he doesn’t finish it.
    Kells: Um, okay.

    He now makes $5.00 a week. I suppose this is okay? I have mixed emotions about it.

    • Questions – – Does the kid get a free or reduced-price school lunch? If he has $5.00 a week to spend on sandwiches, why should he be getting a free lunch (if he does)? Is the kid getting enough to eat? He can either eat all of his school lunch AND the sandwich, or he can pick the portions he wants and then eat the sandwich. Has the kid asked his parent(s) to fix him a sandwich? Do I have a problem with your son selling him a sandwich? Not really, but curiosity would cause me ask about it. Is the kid getting over on YOU (not your son) by getting five sandwiches a week for $5.00?

        • True, he’s just a kid. Didn’t mean to imply that what you or your son is doing was in any way wrong. There is little doubt my job influences my perspective on many issues.

  2. I wish I could find a “blogger goes wild” emoticon on this system, but I can’t. So all I can say is my “man-crush” deepens. :-D

    N-I-C-E job, Utah. Bloody well done and dead on target – on all counts.

        • Well…no, but the other kid has a choice…eat what the school lunch provides or tell his parents he doesn’t like the school lunch…or pay the dollar for the sandwich you and your son provide for him….or go hungry.

          • I suppose this is where I have a bit of progressive tendencies…children. I don’t want to see a child go hungry. I don’t want to see a child go without healthcare. I don’t want to see a child homeless. Hell, I don’t want to see a kid go without a Big Wheel. It’s not the child’s fault.

            Am I making any sense?

            • Well Kells…hate to harsh your mellow, but you* as a parent are responsible for providing all these things to your kid(s), not the government or other taxpayers.

              Now if you have compassion in your heart and see someone who needs help, well then, you roll up your sleeves and get to work helping. Just be sure to remember that charity is a “hand up”, not a “hand out.”

              * Not you specifically Kells, but parents in general. ;)

          • Kells,

            That is why tyranny tends to use the children to push its causes and steal your rights – because it knows you will spare the rod in the name of compassion.

            Now, how does it help that child if you enslave him/her for life so you can feed him/her today? THAT is how we must start looking at these emotional appeals.

      • True, but then, so does Lippmann and Bernays and the rest of the cabal. Most people do not realize the extent to which “progressives” have gone in applying what science has taught us about human behavior toward intentionally shaping and controlling society. If only people understood why they chose the word “progressive” in the first place.

        G, there is so very much that people do not know…

        • There’s a whole hell of a lot that I don’t know, but as my dear departed Grandmother used to say…learn something new everyday and you’ll never get bored with life.

          • Ditto, brother. In fact, the more I learn, the more I learn how much I don’t know.

            Smart grandmother, but then, “seasoned” citizens generally are, aren’t they? We just never realize it until we get a little older ourselves. :-)

  3. This has me thinking.

    You know, a lot of self-proclaimed progressives don’t think of themselves as big government types. They figure a vote for Obama is a vote against the evil corporations, or some nonsense, and that is all they care about.

    But you look at the way they live their lives, and they have strong, admirable values. They grow their own food. They take care of their neighbors. They are thoughtful.

    And they all have one thing in common: they hate Monsanto, and they are mad at Obama for putting Monsanto people on the USDA. It’s an organic thing. They believe Monsanto is poison.

    So…what better way to show these self-proclaimed progressives that they have been duped? All this time they thought they were voting for happy little communities, they were actually voting for the big government solutions that result in the huge multi-national corporations who honestly don’t care that much about nutrition.

    But … these people are in the pocket of Moveon.org. There is no, I mean no, getting through to them.

    Stop me if I sound like a complete libtard.

    • @Justin: The one thing that always has confounded me is that liberals wail and moan about “corporations” and business in general and how evil these organizations are and then strive to turn their lives over to a corporate entity (the government) that has no incentive or motive to answer to them. Corporations can be penalized and do go out of business due to market forces and lack of innovation – government is perpetual and doesn’t have to be efficient, responsive or productive…and is rife with opportunity for corruption.

      If you haven’t., read F.A. Hayek’s Road to Serfdom or search the blog for “Hayek” and you will see what I mean.

  4. M. has made this a very painful day for me……reading my comments, I see that I very much go off on tangents. I suppose this is what upsets B. so. I don’t understand his arguments with me…..until 9 months later. Birthing pains for Kells?

  5. Although retired now I owned a biz in San Francisco for many years and over the years I saw some interesting things in the new college grads I employed. In my industry, high end, double ended close sales we worked on Commission and the opportunity to make good $ was available to anyone willing to work hard and learn the biz. Like most lucrative sales jobs my industry was very competitive and over the years I noticed that new grads had a real problem with competition, they just weren’t prepared for it and couldnt handle it at all. Most Baby Boom kids like myself had been competing all our lives, we were used to it, we didn’t shrink from it. I remember one young hire, she was a natural and I told her so. At first she was very enthused and looked forward to making $150k+ per year. She set to learning her new job and I started helping her, but soon found that she crumbled when she was put in a competitive situation. One day I came back from lunch with a client to find her weeping in my office. I thought someone died, but she informed me she had lost the deal she was working on, the client had gone with her competition. I advised she leave early, get a stiff drink, come back tomorrow and try again. Also told her that she would learn more from failing than from winning. I was stunned when she explained to me this was the first time she had lost at anything. She explained her parents, her school, in her whole life she had always won or at least been told she won even if she only showed up and participated. Eventually I had to let her go, it pained me, but her inability to compete and handle losing made her unfit for a career in professional sales. I believe America is in big trouble and our young probably can’t help us because they can’t cope in the real world, which is still highly competitive.

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