Category Archives: Political philosophy

WHY ARE OBAMA’S VOTER POLLS SO STRONG WHEN HIS RECORD IS SO BAD? Part II

In our first post exploring the dichotomy between Obama’s poor record and strong support we explained that with true believers his record doesn’t count.  He’s a Democrat and he is black, and that is good enough.  But there is another and more disturbing reason for the apparent dichotomy.  We are approaching Tocqueville time in America.

The answer may lie in the very nature of democracy itself.  If that’s the case, we can’t say we weren’t warned.  Aristotle said democracy would lead to great corruption.  Plato warned that the demos (the masses) lacked sufficient understanding to differentiate the charmers from the honest and capable candidates and they would choose the charmers.  Given the nature of man and the fact that in any society the masses will outnumber the elites, both philosophers held that democracy would lead to the demos voting largesse unto themselves from the nation’s accumulated wealth to the ultimate detriment of the entire society.

Aristotle and Plato did not have the benefit of history to confirm their opinions because democracy was a new concept in their day.  But Alexis de Tocqueville, a noted French writer and historian who came more than 2,000 years later did look back on the rise and fall of great empires some of which were limited democracies.

Tocqueville was born to French aristocracy and lived during the period of the French Revolution.  He was a keen observer of the American Experiment that combined free markets, rights to private property and a level of democracy theretofore unknown.  The young Frenchman noted at the time that the “experiment” was a great success.  However, as our long running sidebar suggests, he also warned that over time the public will vote themselves more and more benefits until the government’s treasury is depleted and the system collapses in fiscal insolvency.  Usually to be followed by some form of despotic governance.

Obama is a charmer, Romney is not.  Obama promises ever greater largesse to the people, Romney does not.  The combination of true believers and largesse voters forms a base of unwavering support.  The stable of true believers is relatively static; but the percentage of largesse voters grows over time.  The time Tocqueville gave for the American democracy to run its course was about 200 years; we are well beyond that.  The 2012 election will answer the question, have we reached Tocqueville time in America ?

KRUGMAN ARGUES THAT GREECE AND SPAIN ARE VICTIMS

Paul Krugman, ever the liberal, is less vituperative than usual in today’s column in the New York Times.  It is entitled Europe’s Austerity Madness and is well worth reading.  Not for the column’s correctness but for its clarity.  He outlines with rare accuracy the predominant views of the cause of Europe’s financial woes and the solution for them.

First we must note that what passes for the Right in most of Europe would be called Liberal in the U.S.  This places Krugman’s argument more in the Socialist camp than Liberal.  He says of the European Right,

Talk to German officials and they will portray the euro crisis as a morality play, a tale of countries that lived high and now face the inevitable reckoning.

And fear of a backlash from voters who believe, wrongly, that they’re being put on the hook for the consequences of southern European irresponsibility leaves German politicians unwilling to approve essential emergency lending to Spain and other troubled nations unless the borrowers are punished first.

Despite the insertion of the word “wrongly”, Krugman has done a good job of stating the argument coming from Europe’s Right.  One other fault to find, it’s not punishment that’s sought; it’s bearing the consequences of one’s own decisions.  If you choose to live beyond your means don’t ask someone else to pay for it.

In Krugman’s view,

More austerity serves no useful purpose; the truly irrational players here are the allegedly serious politicians and officials demanding ever more pain.

Consider Spain’s woes. What is the real economic problem? Basically, Spain is suffering the hangover from a huge housing bubble, which caused both an economic boom and a period of inflation that left Spanish industry uncompetitive with the rest of Europe.

Spending was not the problem and austerity is not the solution.  Greece and Spain are victims of a housing boom and collapse that occurred in the private sector.  The fault is with other nations in the Eurozone that are failing in their moral obligation to redistribute some of their relative wealth to where it is needed.  Inferred in that view is the notion that the greed of capitalism was the source of the problem and socialism is the solution.  Get the cause wrong and so it will be with the solution.

WHERE IS THE PROMISED HEALING?

First it was a spontaneous eruption by a few members of a group of demonstrators and it was mere coincidence that the raid happened to occur on the 11th day of September.  The Libyan people were horrified and even helped carry Ambassador Chris Stevens to the hospital, so said Hillary Clinton in the Secretary’s first public statement about the attack.  Then the details morphed a few times until now we are at “Al Qaeda did it”  and the ambassador’s body was paraded through the streets in triumph.  What was so difficult about saying this was an operation planned for September 11th and carried out by a brand of Islamic extremists whose work is all too familiar to us?

It would not reflect well on Islam, of course.  It would place full responsibility for the atrocity on certain elements from the Muslim world and not hold the United States in any way accountable for the overrunning of its Libyan embassy and the murder of its own ambassador.  Any other administration would have said something like that.  But not this one.

The bombing of trains in Madrid, subways in London, a night club in Bali and the World Trade Center in New York are atrocities in plain sight.  They cannot be denied.  And these may be the least of it if you add up all the local killings by Islamists that have occurred over the years in schools, airports, markets and even on military bases.  If such inhumanities are not acknowledged as an element of the Muslim world, then the only alternative is they must be the Muslim world.  That of course is not the case.

Obama’s father was a Muslim.  Obama spent some his early formative years in a Muslim country attending Muslim schools.  It is understandable that he would be sympathetic to the plights and beliefs of Muslim believers.  There is nothing wrong with that.  In fact he is in a unique position to bring some understanding between people of the Muslim and Western worlds.  But it has to start with acknowledgement and unqualified severe condemnation of Islamic militant Jihad and terrorism.  Only then can understanding begin.  Sadly, Obama won’t do that.

THE ANTITHESIS OF WINSTON CHURCHILL

President Barack Hussein Obama

One of the first things Barack Obama did upon occupying the Oval Office was to remove the bust of Winston Churchill from the White House and send it back to the people of England.  It was a deliberate insult, equivalent in diplomatic circles to the secular act of attending a cocktail party and walking up to one of your best and oldest friends and saying straight to his face “I now despise you.”  It was an incivility unbecoming of any person, beneath the dignity of a world leader and confirmation that we had elected our first un-American president.


Common wisdom says Obama’s act of returning the sculpture was the product of an unsatisfied rage over Britain’s history of colonialism, particularly with respect to Kenya.  And that is probably correct.  But there is another reason why Obama might harbor a great bitterness toward Churchill.  Winston Churchill stood strong against Barack Obama’s chosen style of deep Socialist government.

Sir Winston said,

You may, by the arbitrary and sterile act of Government—for remember, Governments create nothing and have nothing to give but what they have first taken away—you may put money in the pocket of one set of Englishmen, but it will be money taken from the pockets of another set of Englishmen, and the greater part will be spilled on the way.

And another,

Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy, its inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery.

Winston Churchill is no longer with us and no man of his stature is alive to speak for us today.  The job is left to smaller voices, like this very small one, to convey messages of success in place of failure, common sense in the face of ignorance, messages of love and ambition to counter the gospel of envy and to tell the story of virtue inherent in a system that leads to the sharing not of misery, but of prosperity.

EXPLORING THE PROGRESSIVE MIND

Someday a great philosophical Einstein may emerge to explain the Liberal mind.  The most puzzling dichotomy is the generosity and tolerance Liberal thinkers show toward all manner of human failings and yet are “utterly intolerance of any creed, belief or opinion that differs from their own.”  Cheat on your wife in a White House closet and lie about it under oath and it is overlooked.  Say you don’t believe in homosexual marriage and they try to destroy you and put you out of business.  Excuse the one who actually commits an egregious act; punish the one who simply holds a different belief.  How do you explain that?

Demonstrate dressed up to look like giant vaginas to make some vague protest and claim the moral high ground.  How do you explain that?

Argue against extremism in the Christian religion then elect Muslim Congressmen to office with ties to anti-American terrorism.  How do you explain that?

Complain about how poor our education system is and then support tenure for public school teachers, support policies that undermine the teacher’s ability to maintain discipline in class and support a teacher’s union that cares no more about the product its members produce than does the auto-worker’s union.  How do you explain that?  As a matter of fact, I think you can explain that.  Greed and power seeking on the part of union leadership, ignorance on the part of the general public, and a little bit of both among some of the teachers.

Nevertheless, neither hypocrisy, greed or ignorance explain the other dichotomies — well, perhaps ignorance.

IT IS ONLY IN WASHINGTON WHERE SAVINGS ARE AN EXPENSE AND AN EXPENSE IS NOT AN EXPENSE BUT AN INVESTMENT

It is interesting to observe how an entire political faction will change the words it uses to further its agenda. Advocates move in unison as though some central agreement had been published forbidding the use of the prior term. For example, using consistent sources for measurement our planet’s warmest year in recent history was in 1998. That’s fourteen years ago and long enough to weaken the political case for global warming. So the “global warming” mantra is dropped in favor of the term “climate change”. It’s a safe bet that the warmers cause will never be threatened by climate stability in the future. Climates simply aren’t stable.

On another point, have you noticed the Democrats are no longer in favor of raising taxes? The public doesn’t take kindly to having taxes increased. Raising taxes on the other fellow is ok of course, but not on me. Democrats now talk about revenue increases.
And the Dems aren’t spenders anymore either. They have given that up. Now they invest. They invest it in things like food stamp programs, stimulus plans and corporate bailouts. It takes a willful suspension of disbelief to call spending “investment” but willful suspension is what they do.

There is however, one thing Democrats do call spending. And that is saving. When the government allows you to save more of your own money than they allowed in the past, it’s called a “tax expenditure”. Confused? Let me explain; your mortgage deduction is called a government expense, the Bush tax relief was called a government expense. Anything that allows you to keep more of your earnings than the government would like you to keep is called a government expense (actually the preferred word is “expenditure”). If you listen carefully you will hear it.

The mindset that views your mortgage deduction as a government expense is a mindset that believes your money belongs first to the government. How else could you explain that a reduction in what the government takes away from you could considered to be a government expense?
You can not stop the world from choosing words inappropriately to distort your thinking, but you can learn to recognize and guard against it when it happens.

OBAMA’S SINKING SUPPORT

The crowds are not coming out.  The money is not coming in.  The aura of omnipotence is gone.  Cracks in the liberal media are beginning to show.  The liberal leaning Newsweek covered the latest issue with “We Need a New President.”  Unemployment is higher longer than at any time since the Great Depression.  The President has revealed some very unpopular beliefs with statements like “You didn’t build that… “.  However, the polls don’t reflect the decline.  Why is that?

It’s a tough thing for any person to admit they were very wrong; that’s a fact of human nature.  Answering a pollster commits you to nothing while it allows you to defer a decision you are loathe to make.  But what happens in the voting booth stays in the voting booth.  It’s private.  For better or for worse, when the chips are down voters vote their pocketbook.  As Walter Cronkite famously said, “It’s the economy, stupid.”  That does not bode well for Obama.

If the theory is correct, remaining vestiges of it will show up in the exit polls as some voters will be reluctant to admit they voted against their one time hero and a black man.

The Obama team could garner a few more votes if they spread the fear that Big Brother can tell how you voted.  Let’s hope they don’t think of it.

ABOUT CHAPT 6 of RADICAL-in-CHIEF

 

The revelations in Chapter 6 of Radical-in-Chief would be devastating to Obama’s chances of re-election if those revelations were better known.

Spending the nation into bankruptcy may be just overzealousness on the President’s part.  It is, however, totally consistent with a strategy promoted among hard core socialists in the community from which Barack Obama emerged.  Socialist scholar Peter Dreier advocates driving the United States into insolvency as a plan.  Others put it forth as one alternative in a win-win situation.  You pile on the social programs and entitlements until you either have a socialist nation or an insolvent one.  In either case you win because in the latter case, capitalism takes the hit as a failure leaving socialism to proclaim itself to be the cure.

In either case America would be transformed into something it has never been.  And that is exactly what Obama said was his goal.  Our first part of the Chapter 6 review will be published on Sunday.

 

RYAN ROMNEY RALLY ROCKS — 10,000+ PEOPLE SHOW UP

Wisconsin is Paul Ryan’s home state and what a rousing reception he received!  More than ten thousand plus cheering fans came in threatening weather to greet Ryan and Romney in the town of Waukesha.

Ryan was born and raised about 60 miles away in Janesville which is a modest sized town in fly-over country.  That means it is down home America and Paul Ryan is Janesville’s Mr. Smith who went to Washington.  Romney called his running mate “someone who is a leader . . . who has real character, who loves America,”.  That’s a change we can hope for.

When the cheering subsided Romney got serious.

“If you follow the campaign of Barack Obama, he’s going to do everything in his power to make this the lowest, meanest negative campaign in history. We’re not going to let that happen.

Mr. President, take your campaign out of the gutter and let’s talk about the real issues that America faces.”

Someone near the stage started heckling the candidates Romney handled the heckler very well.  Romney faced the person and said “You ought to find yourself a different place to be disruptive because here we believe in listening to people with dignity and respect.”

We are coming to a fork in the road and if we take the path to the left it will be so precipitous there may be no turning back.  It will be the proof that Tocqueville was right.  One reason Ronald Reagan was so loved is that he had great faith in the American people, in you and I, to do the right thing when all the chips are down.  If we choose the path to the right it will be proof that Reagan was right.

ROMNEY PICKS PAUL RYAN FOR VP SLOT

Ryan is a high risk high reward choice.  High risk because he will not bring in any particular voting group, such as Rubio would have done with Hispanics for instance.  High risk because it leaves the team vulnerable to attack for lack of experience in the field of foreign affairs.  Neither of the candidates have good credentials in this area.

High reward because there could not be a better team for saving the country from bankruptcy.  And if bankruptcy were allowed to occur it would spell the end of capitalism in America as we know it.  Prosperity would fall across the board along with it.  You saw what happened in France.  When threatened with insolvency the solution cannot be to continue down the same path and even add a benefit or two.  Yet that’s what the voters chose and hard core Socialists knew the people would choose it.

Austerity never sells very well in the voting booth.  On the other hand, the promises of Socialism are very appealing.  It’s only the reality that stinks.

If Obama sticks with Biden, you wont want to miss the VP debate.