Sunday, January 20, 2013

Look What They've Done to Our Country, Mom. . .

We have entered the new world of 2013. Already, I'm ready to go back to 2012 (as bad of a year as that one was!). Now I will differ from my conservative brethren and argue that Barack Obama is not deliberately trying to destroy the United States of America. I honestly believe that Obama believes in his heart of hearts that what he is doing is in the best interests of all Americans. Obama seems to believe that it is the job of the government to look after it's citizens, even those citizens who do not want to looked after. I think Obama believes that he knows what is best for us. The problem lies in the fact that I don't agree. We now have a government that wants to monitor what we eat and they now want to monitor our firearms. Our government truly wants to be the retirement plan for all Americans and it now wants to be the health-care provider for all Americans. In fact, the government has become the great enabler. At one point in time, we were the masters of our own destiny. Now, the government is there is bail us out when we fail. If you can't afford a college education, big brother is there. If you can't afford a home mortgage, big brother is there. If you can't afford health insurance, big brother is there. If you can't pay your taxes, don't worry-we'll pass it on to those people that are more successful. At this point in time, fifty-two percent of all American adults are receiving some type of government benefit check. Under Obama, we have added over two million new jobs. The downsize, we have also added over four million Americans onto disability. How can we continue to sustain this type of governmental spending? Now the government is taking on the gun control question. Now I have no problem with some type of gun control. However, I get the feeling (that just like Obama's tax policy) that we're just going to continue to penalize the law abiding public and those who have worked all of their life for the American dream. As we are nearing the inauguration of Obama for his second term, I honestly that we have reached a watershed moment in United States history. We can continue to speed towards big brother watching over all of us, or we can break this cycle of governmental dependence. Unfortunately, I think I know the answer. "Angels and Ministers of Grace, Defend Us!"

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Is Barack Obama Evil?

I realize that this is going to be me flamed by a lot of my conservative brethren, but I honestly do not believe that Obama is trying to destroy this country. I have read article after article, by many conservatives, and they constantly state that Obama is simply attempting to forever harm this nation. I refuse to accept it. While I don't agree with virtually anything the president believes, I honestly think he is acting on noble impulses. There is no doubt in my mind that he is doing what he honestly believes to be right. His vision is one of a government which assists more of the "lower-class" Americans. His belief system dictates that the government has got to become more expansive because they are the only agency that is capable of helping more Americans. This is NOT a Jeffersonian impulse. This is a direct evolution from Roosevelt's New Deal and Johnson's Great Society. While I do not agree with all of it, I an convinced that he is doing what his mind and heart tells him is right. So, to all of my conservative brethren, lay off of the arguments that he is out to destroy the country. While I am not pleased with the direction, we have a election where we can possibly right our course. I am almost reminded of the words from author Alan Drury with his classic work Come Nineveh, Come Tyre. In referring to the president that had led America to the brink of a takeover by the Soviet Union, the author wrote: "all had not gone well for the president of the United States. Not from evil intentions, but from good intentions-foolishly applied." Here is the hope that we can correct ourselves in the next election, but if not-we have survived much worse in this country than Barack Hussein Obama.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Fourth of July, 2012

"When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security."
Well, T.J., here we are-two hundred and thirty-six years later. A famous historian once referred to the Declaration of Independence as the "American Scripture." It was a different age. John Adams argued that it was the "age of Revolution and Constitutions." The Founding Fathers were convinced that the truth and sanctity of their ideals would be enough. That words truly mattered. That words could change men and the mind's of men. All evidence shows, they were right. Look at what they accomplished. To paraphrase Lincoln, we brought forth a "new birth of freedom." It wasn't perfect, but it established a concept of egalitarianism that few have ever accepted before. The equality of all men, regardless of race, religion, or creed.
Now let's flash forward to the year 2012. First, I wonder how many Americans would even recognize the words. I wonder how many of our political leaders would even recognize the words. Thanks to the advent of the Tea Party, we have been re-introduced to the concept of liberty. From the point of view of our framers, liberty was the freedom from government oppression. It was not the right to refuse to pay your taxes (as many in the Tea Party advocate). On this Fourth of July I find myself wondering how Jefferson would reconcile his beliefs in the light of the massive expansion in government powers. Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal; Lyndon Johnson's Great Society; George W. Bush's No Child Left Behind; Barack Obama's Affordable Care Act; all are examples of the expansion in the powers of the federal government. While many, in the Tea Party and elsewhere, complain about this government expansion-it is a fact of life. You cannot put the Genie back into the bottle; you cannot close Pandora's Box. Along the way we made the decision, for good or ill, that it WAS the responsibility of the federal government to care for it's citizens. The State governments were simply not up to the task. 
With that thought accepted, where do we go from here. The entitlement society has emerged. More and more people are in disagreement with John F. Kennedy when he uttered the famous words: "Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country." At what point do we accept the notion that we can't have it both ways. We cannot claim that the government should provide us with assistance and then turn around and decry that very assistance. I wonder how many Tea Party members will scream for government assistance after a hurricane or tornado? 
The argument is now moot, the expansive federal government is here to stay. Remember, the federal government is the largest employer in the United States. No Republican can ever pull a Ronald Reagan and run on the promise of "cutting the size of the federal government" unless he wants to campaign on the promise of eliminating jobs and inflating the unemployment rate. The question becomes how far do we want our government to go? At what point do our citizens have to take responsibility for their own actions? In 1776, they agreed to the solemn promise: "we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor." I wonder how many people would make a similar pledge in this current narcissistic society?
On this 4 July 2012, let us reflect  not only on where we've been, but also on where we're going. Let us hold our current presidential candidates to a standard of "vision." Let us hold them to a defense of these "self-evident" truths. Maybe then we can re-attain that sense of "civic virtue." That antique belief that we should do what is in the best interests of the nation, regardless of party or regional beliefs. Until we do, I do not believe we will ever fulfill our motto of "E Pluribus Unum: Out of Many, One

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Obama, Immigration, and the Law

By now, most intelligent readers are more than aware that the United States Supreme Court ordered that most portions of the Arizona Immigration Law were struck down. The only portion left standing, was the right of the police in Arizona to detain immigrants suspected of breaking the law. The Obama administration promptly turned around and ordered that they would no longer deport anyone under those circumstances. Whatever happened to "preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States of America. SO HELP ME GOD?" Candidate Obama, while campaigning in 2008, declared on more than one instance that he would dismantle the water-boarding of suspected terrorists at Gitmo. He argued that famous debate line: "Are we a nation of laws or aren't we?" Well, Mr. President, are we or are we not a nation of laws? The major issue at play in the "illegal" immigration (the argument is not whether or not people have a right to come to this country) is the notion of our immigration laws. Do we "reward" or "look the other way" now at "illegal" immigrants? If we can "ignore" portions of the immigration laws, which other laws can American citizens ignore? Either the Constitution is a living, breathing document that still has relevance today or it is an antique that belongs in a museum case. No President (Andrew Jackson, Abraham Lincoln, Richard Nixon, Barack Obama) can decide to ignore or bypass the law. If you don't like a portion of the law Mr. President, fix it. President Obama has had forty-one months in office (most of that time with a democratic majority in both houses of Congress) and he has done nothing about the immigration question until recently. Imagine that, he weighed in on the question right as the polls for the upcoming election started to show the race tightening. Not that the current resident of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue would ever do anything for crass political purposes.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Common Courtesy is Dead!!!!

What ever happened to common courtesy? There was a time when you were taught your "place" in society. As a child, I can remember the do's and don'ts from my parents. Wearing your hat indoors, say yes sir or yes madam to adults, holding the door open for ladies, picking up trash, all of these were behaviors that were drilled in our heads by our parents. Now we have people who not only wear their hats indoors they are too ignorant to figure out which side of the cap is the "front." Manners, it would seem, are now as antique as telephone booths or eight track tapes. Have we become such a "me" generation that we can no longer be considerate of our neighbors. Are we such a narcissistic society that what other people think is no longer important? Common class and common courtesy are no on total life support. I'm not smart enough to figure out when we crossed that "line in the sand," the line that separated the "intelligent" humans from the animals. But we have definitely crossed it. A true conservative once stated that "all change is change for the worse." Unfortunately, that may be true. Sadly those people with class are being vastly outnumbered by those with a total lack of class. Here's hoping that we might turn the tide, but I doubt it. I suppose it has to be George W. Bush's fault, after all-everything else is blamed on the man.

Monday, April 30, 2012

An Open Letter to Mr. Obama and Mr. Romney

Dear Sirs:

The election of 2012 could conceivably be the most important election in United States history. Gentlemen, could we please refrain from the histrionics and have a serious discussion of the issues. To this point, all we have heard is hyperbole from both of you. According to the Republicans, Obama is a socialist who is bent on destroying our system of capitalism. According to the Democrats, Romney and the Republicans want to turn back the clock to the Middle Ages and all of our problems are due to George W. Bush. Can we now start to have a serious discussion? Would both of you explain what is your vision for America? What do both of you plan to do about the deficit? Please, don't insult us by simply stating that the deficit can be fixed by the Democratic notion of raising taxes on the wealthy and the Republican notion of simply cutting the size of the federal budget. Do you honestly think that we believe you? If we follow you, please explain to us where this country will be in twenty years. After all is said and done, what happens to this country after your administration? How do you plan to fix the problems of homelessness, hunger, poverty, immigration, and the sense of apathy and entitlement that has gripped this country. Both of you owe this country an honest discussion of the issues. Let's refrain from the partisan eye-gouging and let's bring the discussion back to where it should be: an intelligent discussion of the vision for America. Both of you are equally guilty, now let's see if you have the courage to give the American voters what they need. Remember, the only thing riding in the balance is the future of this country. With those types of stakes, we (the taxpayers/voters) deserve better than what we're getting from both of you.

'via Blog this'

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Has the Republican Party become the "new" Whig Party?

I will have to start this rant off with a disclaimer, I have voted Republican my entire life. I was a Reagan Republican and since I gained the right to vote, I have not seriously considered voting for a democratic candidate for president. That being said, I honestly believe that the "current" Republican Party is now on life support. The "old" Republican party was based on several major tenets: first, an avowed hatred of "big" government. Goldwater and Reagan both campaigned on the notion of shrinking the size of the federal government. Second, republicans had a deep hatred of Communism and would do anything in their power to limit it's spread and eventually destroy it. Third, republicans have always resisted virtually any interference in the economy by our central government. I would respectfully suggest to my republican brethren that all three of these issues are now "dead and buried." The federal government is now the single, largest employer in the country. To argue that it is time to shrink the size of that said government would be to argue for an increase in the unemployment rate. Communism, for the most part, is now a forgotten ideal. Even those countries who still claim to be communist, no longer truly practice the ideology. Finally, it is hard to argue that the government should not get involved in the economy. Our practice of business bail-outs and tax incentives shows that the government is currently knee deep in the economy.

Therefore, what does the Republican Party believe? The Reagan Revolution brought the "moral majority" onto the Republican playing field. That "marriage" has forced the Republicans to adopt a "social" agenda. Hence, the Republican insistence on pro-life and pro-family issues. Mitt Romney will be the first non-conservative republican presidential candidate since Gerald Ford. The religious right is now in a quandary about whether or not they can support Romney due to his "moderate" beliefs. Therefore, we are back to my question-what is the future of the Republican Party?

After the election of Andrew Jackson in 1828, we saw the decline of the National Republican Party (no relation to the modern one). Those groups, north and south, that opposed the policies of Andrew Jackson slowly coalesced into a national party, they referred to themselves as the Whig Party. The Whig Party was NOT unified by any central political doctrine, just a hatred for all things Jackson. After Jackson served his two terms, the party slowly crumbled and disintegrated in the face of sectionalism prior to the American Civil War. I would suggest that the current Republican party is facing a similar fate. There is no central Republican ideology. There is no longer a core set of beliefs. The party has simply become the anti-Obama party. The Republicans are in need of new leadership and a new sense of vision. If not, we may be seeing a new political re-alignment in our future. Something that most of us thought was a virtual impossibility. After all, where there is no vision, "the people perish." Of course, this is just my opinion, and I could be wrong!


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