Friday, September 9, 2016

Ronald Reagan's 1975 speech to YAF - Young Americans for Freedom

Ronald Reagan Addresses Young Americans for Freedom

Officers, members of YAF, Young Americans for Freedom, first of all let me thank you for allowing me share in this meeting with you in this manner, and at the same time express my regret that it was impossible for me to be there with you in person.

You know you never cease to amaze me, you have followed a philosophy in spite of the fact that you spent your lives growing up in a nation that was characterized by an atmosphere of tax and tax, spend and spend, elect and elect. The era of the free lunch and the handout. How you have clung to principle and followed the philosophy that you follow does amaze me but at the same time as a citizen I want to thank you and commend you for it.

You know, the policies that our opponents, those who follow the liberal philosophy, have espoused have distorted the balance between the different branches and levels of government, they have distorted also the relationship of the people to their government. But maybe you and I have done better than we know, those of us who talk of conservatism. Because the great majority of the people today, believe with us. They may not be able to put a label on it, but their approach to the various policies of government is the same as ours.

Now, this was evidenced in the 1974 election, disastrous as it was, when we look at the liberal candidates who campaigned and who won, by espousing the same philosophy that we have talked for so many years. When they wet their fingers and held them up in the political wind they found there was no longer a market for the old fashioned cliches of the New Deal and the Great Society, and all the other social tinkering that's gone on for the last forty years. They were against deficit spending in the campaign, but what we have to be on guard for, is the fact that now they are voting for a $100 billion dollar deficit in the budget. There was an incumbent senator from the middle-west who ran on a platform for re-election in which he opposed gun control and bussing, and since returning to Washington he's voted for both.

They say that politics is the second oldest profession, sometimes it bears a grave resemblance to the first.

Our responsibility now, is to point out every discrepancy between the campaign promise and the post-election performance of these people who sang our song. Its time to quit trying to organize the same old minority every two years and start informing the new majority every day who has been responsible for bringing us to the brink of disaster, economic disaster. Our task is now one of education and information, we no longer have to sell our philosophy. And I submit that the Republican Party has the great opportunity to do this. We have a concrete example to hold up for comparison.

A great nation, with a land mass greater than our own, rich in natural resources, 250 million capable people. And for more than fifty years, they have been free to fully implement and put into practice without hindrance or interference, all the principles of socialism. And we could be just like them, but it would take a little doing on our part.

We'd have to start by cutting our paychecks eighty percent, move 33 million workers back to the farm, destroy 59 million television sets, tear up 14 out of 15 miles of highway and two thirds of our railroad tracks, junk 19 out of 20 automobiles, rip out 9/10ths of our telephones and tear down seventy percent of our houses. And then all we'd have to do is find a capitalist country that would sell us wheat on credit, so we wouldn't starve.

You know, in spite of all our greatness, our people feel a sense once again or a desire to feel a sense of greatness. A sense in the pride in their own capacity, for performing great deeds. We republicans I think can do something about this, but not if we try to be all things to all people. There are some in our midst who have suggested that we should broaden our base. Except that what they mean by broadening our base is to blur the image, to make us indistinguishable from the other party.

Some have suggested that the 1974 election, the disastrous results, were an indictment of what we stand for. Well may I suggest that the meaning of the last election will not be found among those who voted, it will be found by polling those who stayed home. The biggest non voter bloc in our nation's history.

And why did they stay home? Well because they said they couldn't see any difference between the two parties.

I think they're basically wrong, but I think this is also an indication of what our answer should be to those who would make us more like the opponents. I am a convert to Republicanism. I spent most of my adult life as a democrat, and I can testify that when I found I could no longer follow the leadership of the democratic party, I became a republican not because the parties were the same, but precisely because they were different.

More than half of those who didn't vote have been polled and say, it no longer makes any difference which party wins.

Now some have taken another course, there are some among us, and I respect their views, who suggest that that means an end to the Republican Party that we should form a new third party. May I suggest an alternative to that? Let's have a new first party. A Republican Party, raising a banner of bold colors, no pale pastels, a banner instantly recognizable as standing for certain values which will not be compromised.

Yes, we must broaden our base, but lets broaden the way we did in 1972, because those Americans, democrats and independents, and republicans are still out there looking for a banner around which to rally. And we have what they want, what they're seeking. But they don't know that. And sometimes I wonder if we know it.

Young people, your own companions, I am told are registering either democrat or independent avoiding us in overwhelming numbers. Well is this because of what we represent, or what they think we represent? I know that in a poll of 35,000 college and university students, eighty percent of them said they wanted more individual freedom, less interference by government in their private lives. Well isn't that what we want?

Our banner should also proclaim our faith in the marketplace as the greatest provider for our people, and that we will eliminate needless regulations and restrictions that keep the marketplace from being able to provide the jobs our people need. And on that subject, let us also proclaim compassion for those who through no fault of their own cannot provide for themselves, see that their needs are fully met. But at the same time, let us say that all those who are able-bodied, will be given an opportunity to work for their welfare grants. We will not make them lifetime recipients of a dole, as clients of an ever growing welfare bureaucracy.

We must extend our compassion to that great group of unsung heroes, the working men and women of this country who ask nothing of government but to be left alone. They make the whole system work, but for a long time they haven't been fairly represented in government.

Today they see themselves falling further and further behind unable to afford the good life they've earned and deserve. Political demagogues for the last four decades have been appealing to the worst in us, the tepidity and selfishness of human nature. They've been telling us that each one of us can have a bigger slice of pie but we have to help them take it away from someone else who's been getting too big a share. Well I think it's time for us to tell those political demagogues, we can all have a bigger slice of pie if government will get out of the way, and let the free enterprise system bake a bigger pie.

James Burnham has said that even the most skillful surgeon when operating on a democratic politician, cannot separate demagogic from solid tissue, without causing the death of the patient.

Can anyone say that the banner that I've presented so far does not represent what has been typical republican philosophy, but does it not also represent what the people of this country in an overwhelming majority desire for themselves and the country today? Our party must stand for the traditional belief in a federation of sovereign states, of local autonomy and individual freedom. We didn't seek on the world scene the leadership that has been thrust upon us, but we can't abdicate that leadership without abdicating our ability to keep the peace.

We have seen in recent months little men with little minds in Washington tarnish our shield and rob us of credibility throughout the world. Make it plain to every friend and foe alike, every nation, that we will join any in seeking peace, but we will keep our commitments, and we will not give away freedom not ours to give. Nor will we sacrifice our own freedom, we will indeed sacrifice to maintain that freedom and peace throughout the world.

One last line, I think we have room for on our banner. Let us add a line that says as a pledge:

That never again will young Americans be asked to fight and die for their country, unless the goal is victory.

Thank you very much.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Theodore Roosevelt - the first globalist president

All of us know how politicized the Nobel Prize is, but many people falsely believe that it's only been politicized since around the time of Obama, perhaps since the time of Carter. It's been a tool for awarding statists for over a century. Don't forget, Wilson also won a Nobel. On May 5th, 1910, Theodore Roosevelt gave his acceptance speech for receiving his political prize.

Here is how Roosevelt began the last paragraph of that speech:

Finally, it would be a masterstroke if those great powers honestly bent on peace would form a League of Peace, not only to keep the peace among themselves, but to prevent, by force if necessary, its being broken by others. The supreme difficulty in connection with developing the peace work of The Hague arises from the lack of any executive power, of any police power to enforce the decrees of the court.

Even here, TR continues his zeal for kingly government and some power, any power, who can issue decrees to all of you little peasants out there. But this is much, much worse. Being as this speech is from 1910, this makes Roosevelt the first American President(he was a former president at the time) to call for an international body to lord over multiple nations. Note that last line, where he laments the fact that there's no executive power at the Hague. So, to you living in 2016, do you think Roosevelt would be proud of what his World Court has become? It's just a side question, a thought piece.

Woodrow Wilson would continue Roosevelt's work with an attempt to form a League of Peace League of Nations, and finally, TR's cousin Franklin would succeed in implementing the dream, with the introduction of the League of Peace United Nations.

Friday, August 26, 2016

The Columbian Orator, audiobook edition

Normally I wait until I am fully complete with an audiobook before announcing it here, but I am handling this one a little differently.

For my next audiobook, I am not doing a solo read. It is a group project on Librivox instead. So if you are interested, feel free to join in and take a section. The book has over 80 sections, so most are not more than 1-3 pages long.

The Columbian Orator, first published in 1797, is a great book for anybody interested in the culture of early America. It contains speeches from Founders such as Franklin, Mason, and Washington; it has several British parliamentary speeches from Pitt, Fox, and others, and even earlier classical works, from well known Roman authors such as Cato and Cicero. Additionally, many sections of the book are deeply religious, in regards to topics like Christ's Crucifixion, David and Goliath, and the existence of God. Finally, there are sections of this book that contain back and forth discussions, which could afford two people the ability to have somewhat of a personal dialog together.(per the book text, of course)

In short, this is truely a great book and it will be a great audiobook when complete. If you have ever thought about considering recording an audiobook or want to give it a try, this is a good place to start.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Progressivism kills dolphins. So stop feeding the dolphins!

You ever see one of these signs? If you live in a warm-climate state near large bodies of water, you most likely have in one form or another. They're quite common. It is also common to see the official signs, which may look like this:

You know this is a discouragement of socialism, right? Now, I don't want to downplay the effect of wild animals who get hungry and lash out, and other maladies, such as getting stuck in a net or the effect of propeller blades.

But lets be serious here. Among other things this is a de-facto campaign against socialism and progressivism. It truely is. On the intro page, states this: "The billboard in the picture says it all. It’s illegal to feed wild dolphins. And it can cause a dolphin’s death." and then the very next line it says is "Dive deeper". OK!!! I will! Diving deeper beyond just simply "food handouts to dolphins", is there a system designed around handouts and dependence? Yes, there is such a system. There's quite a lot of such systems.

According to sarasotadolphin, as well as Don't Feed Wild Dolphins .org, "Dolphins are hunters, not beggars". Hey wait! Humans are hunters, not beggars! The website says: "when people offer them food, dolphins, like most animals, take the easy way out. They learn to beg for a living, lose their fear of humans, and do dangerous things."

Hmmmmmm......... when people offer them food, humans, like most animals, take the easy way out. They learn to beg for a living and do dangerous things.

On the website this phrase is used: "begging for a living". That phrase is the key. The website even states that when you practice dolphin socialism, the mother dolphins don't teach the baby dolphins how to be independent and hunt for their own food. In other words, they become wards of the state; they become permanent dependents on getting handouts. Among researchers, there is even a famous example: a dolphin named Beggar. According to National Geographic, "Beggar mostly stopped foraging on his own". Was Beggar killed by socialism? Slate has an interesting article about this, which states that "He was loved to death." Now isn't that exactly what the progressives claim? That the reason they get people hooked on handouts want to redistribute wealth, is because the progressives are so loving and caring? Are people also loved to death?

As history has proven, socialism kills. It even kills dolphins.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Does Japan have a living and breathing constitution?

Joe Biden made some interesting comments recently regarding the constitution of Japan and nuclear armaments. It's been widely reported, so I don't have much need to re-hash all of that.

Except for one thing: What is it about Japan's constitution that makes progressives believe that the Japanese constitution does not qualify as a living and breathing document?

I would really like to know the answer to that question.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

As police commissioner, Theodore Roosevelt laid out his dreams for benevolent dictatorship

If this country could be ruled by a benevolent czar, we would doubtless make a good many changes for the better. - Theodore Roosevelt, 1897

In most of the puff piece biographies written about Theodore Roosevelt, one will read about the valiant days of TR as police chief, cleaning the joint up, and rooting out the bad guys. But is that really all that happened? Nothing more? Why is it that the full story is never told, rather, it has to be pieced together?

During his time as a police commissioner, TR was actually quite unpopular. There were many who dubbed him "King Roosevelt I"(source), with some newspapers even going so far as to coin a jingle based on the notion:

East Side, West Side, all around the town, yesterday went King Roosevelt I, ruler of New York and patron saint of dry Sundays.(source)

Now, it is true, that much of Roosevelt's unpopularity as "King Roosevelt I" was directly connected to his taking away people's drinks(source), but there was more, much more to this.

As an aside, wasn't prohibition one of the crowning achievements of progressivism? And didn't that involve big government taking away people's drinks? Interesting. But I digress.

Roosevelt had a longstanding proclivity toward "strong"(which he used as a euphemistic code word for roughshod, hurtful, bully government) government. In a letter to his sister Anna, TR wrote:

If I were ... a single-headed Commissioner, with absolute power (not to speak of his having an infinitely less difficult problem to solve), I could in a couple of years accomplish almost all I could desire; were I even the member of a three headed commission, like the Boston Police Department, with absolute power, I could have accomplished very much; but, as it is I am one of four commissioners, any of whom possess a veto power in promotions.(source)(source)(source)

Now really.... Who do you know who speaks this way besides 12 year olds and young college grads who are completely out of touch with reality?

It's no wonder then, we have all of these stories of how most of the republicans in New York were just waiting with bated breath to get rid of Roosevelt. The web page for the National Park Service contains a very interesting line in this regard:

In 1895, he resigned to take the post of Police Commissioner of New York City. With this new appointment he hoped to expand his ideas of reform into new areas. Just like the Civil Service Commission, Roosevelt wanted the Police Department appointments and promotions to be based on merit rather than patronage. He tirelessly hounded corrupt and incompetent policemen, often replacing them with men who had no connection to any political machine.

With all of his talk of benevolent czars and absolute power, and the fact that the NY GOP ejected him as fast as they could, I highly doubt that Roosevelt's time as commissioner was truely as clean as the wind driven snow as they make it seem with this line here. Particularly this line of him "tirelessly hounding" "incompetent policemen". As we have seen with Obama, people enthralled with absolute power such as this have bizarre definitions for "incompetence".

This certainly matches with his letter to his sister. His "tireless hounding" had a lot to do with getting rid of people that he, and only he alone, knew to be incompetent. It is likely that there were some true incompetents. Others, however, were probably no more than simply of a different ideological persuasion than he.

Between that, and his anti-saloon campaign, Roosevelt ended up losing his job as commissioner - a job that was revoked by republicans.(source) All the reform work Roosevelt had attempted to do was for naught.

It is interesting to note, that one of Roosevelt's last acts as Governor, was to unify the job of Police Commissioner under a single head starting in 1901. This is very, very indicative of how deep his progressive ideology ran, even at that time. He wouldn't even be the one sitting in the top chair, as he had dreamed of years prior. But that power - it had to be centralized. He couldn't let it go.

Centralization for centralization's purpose. That's progressivism.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Understanding the non-marxist left

In 2008 Daniel J. Flynn published A Conservative History of the American Left, which he ends chapter 8 this way:
Despite his loyal namesake's best efforts, Henry George is not imagined as a Christ-like figure by contemporary leftists. This is because, overwhelmed by Marxism, few contemporary leftists remember their non-marxist forebears. But George's contemporaries certainly did. He flashed, burned white hot, and was gone. In a fit of overly generous praise, which ages poorly, philosopher John Dewey held: "It would require less than the fingers of the two hand to enumerate those who, from Plato down, rank with Henry George among the world's social philosophers." Though very few leftists today concur with Dewey's assessment, its worth noting that quite a few leftists yesterday heartily agreed.

After blogging about the history of progressivism for going on 6 years now, I am starting to believe that this is a huge weakness among conservatives, perhaps the biggest of all. Far too many people believe that all leftism falls within the socialist/marxian sphere, and because people (some of whom, I believe, are in flat-out refusal) don't look beyond that sphere, it leaves us wide open to attacks from people who would be relatively easy to defeat otherwise.

This goes back to what I believe is my mission statement, and has been my mission statement since November 2010:

If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle - Sun Tzu (Art of War, Chapter 3)

That quote is on the right hand side of my blog, and it will never ever change. It perfectly encompasses the reason for the existence of this.

If you are a conservative and you are in refusal to even consider the non-marxist left, you will succumb in every battle. And you have been. I see it all the time, I hear it all the time - in other blogs, on TV, radio, and elsewhere. There is a definite feeling no matter where you turn that conservatives take two, if not three steps backward for every one step forward. Then people scratch their heads "how did we get here?"

You gotta know your enemy. All of them. Not just the socialists and the communists. And just so it is said, this isn't me practicing a little finger wagging. I put myself into this. I have been reading the works of the non-socialist progressives for years now, and I still, STILL do not believe I know enough about progressives like Wilson or Theodore Roosevelt and all the rest. But at least I am trying to know them and their statist beliefs. All houses worth living in are built on strong, rock solid foundations. Progressivism has a weak foundation(if it were ever attacked; the foundation of progressivism is strong enough to resist basic erosion), but because nobody dares look progressivism in the face and challenge it, that foundation stands the test of time - at least the last 100 years - it's stood so far. It will likely keep standing until we attack it.

We have a long way to go to eliminating progressivism, and in just about every instance, we haven't even begun to fight. That fight begins, and can only begin, with an understanding of the non-marxist left. The old left. A lot of people will talk about the new left, the 60's generation and beyond, but what about the old left? I mean before FDR's time.

Why do so many let them off the hook, when they don't deserve to be let off the hook? They are guilty.