Category Archives: History

Neo-Free Soil

In 1848, Salmon P. Chase coined a simple slogan for the Free Soil Party, which later became a core part of the Republican Party.

Free Soil, Free Speech, Free Labor and Free Men

I believe that something similar is in order today. In fact, many of these very same brief summaries of positions would be adaptable to present day policy debates in parallel with past ones, and naturally align with the American Conservative/Right-libertarian positions, with a few additions:

Free Soil

The Government lays claim to large swaths of land in the American West. Their claim to property rights over this territory is theoretically dubious; indeed, from a Lockean perspective, it is totally illegitimate. As such, while it might be pragmatic to pay down the debt by selling off public land, it is bad law to do so. My suggestion would be to pass a new Homestead Act, whereby this property could transition to private ownership from non-ownership, through use. Economic activity on and development of this land would be encouraged by temporary exemption of all State, Local, and Federal taxation therein. Some portions could be set aside for the establishment of private parks and nature preserves, with the provision for ownership changed from any use, to exclusively use as parks where the owners would be free to charge whatever fees for access they see fit, on condition that they maintain the land well (Not that they attempt to keep the land in a static state, it must be said) . Legal authority (ie law enforcement jurisdiction) within the territory is to belong solely to the States or the relevant Local Government, but all property rights are to be private, and certain state regulations are to be considered abrogated within the property at least for the duration of the development period. This is a program that not only restores the right notion of property rights to our laws, but will also spur economic development and growth, as reopen the once closed frontier.

Free Speech

Freedom of Speech is under assault in America, make no mistake about that. Whether it be Harry Reid and his ilk seeking broad, sweeping power to ban the use of money by corporations to give the views of the people they are composed of a platform-including, it must be noted, all media corporations, between which there is no legal distinct or distinct of substance-or be it the effective nullification of anti-SLAPP laws for anyone who dares speak against a publicly funded High Priest of the New Religion, or State sponsored Universities have explicit or implicit speech codes and whereby in the latter case aggressive intimidaters can force Universities to suppress anyone from speaking there that they don’t agree with. American Conservatives/Right-libertarians must stand against all this, in favor of absolute, unequivocal freedom of speech.

Free Labor

We should favor the elimination immediately of the minimum wage-a barrier to entry in the labor supply market for unskilled, inexperienced workers. We should favor the elimination of most if not all occupational licensing. We should abolish the National Labor Relations Board that supports labor supply cartelization that could not survive in the market otherwise. We should pass a national right to work law forbidding and abrogating all closed shop clauses in labor contracts. The labor market must be competitive and free, as should be all other markets.

Free Banks

Banking has been substantially regulated in the US from it’s very earliest days. Monetary Laissez Faire was never allowed to prevail, even during the “free banking” era. Economic theory and historical experience both favor a free system of competitive note issue (historically, under a commodity standard, ie Gold) has produced far greater economic stability than a Central Bank could hope to achieve-indeed, Central Banks are the cause of much monetary disequilibrium and thus economic and financial instability. Scotland, the home nation of Adam Smith, offers particularly strong historical evidence in this regard, but the experience of our Canadian neighbors to the North are also especially informative, where during various periods Canadian banking was not subject to certain regulations and restrictions that were often plaguing the US, and escaped many of the associated problems. This amounts to a proposal for the eventual privatization of the Money Supply. As we recognized, the demand for a good is best met when competitive, private forces supply it to the public, meeting Demand for it by finding the appropriate price to clear the market. At present, however, a monopoly over meeting demand for money by the Government means that Supply is essentially arbitrary, and unsurprisingly shortages and surpluses result as always when the Government attempts to control the provision of a good. In this case it is the good that stands in for all others, or more precisely when we speak of money demand (that is, to hold, not spend, money, where the immediate demand is for money for it’s own sake, that is, for forgoing present consumption in favor of future consumption), the present good that stands in for future all possible future goods. Equally unsurprisingly, all manner of mischief results from this central planning of the Money Supply. A system of free, unregulated banking would all but eliminate business cycles caused by monetary disequilibrium, leaving only those cycles caused by real shocks, which are unavoidable no matter what the economic system. It would accomplish this by stabilizing nominal income (MV), and implicit monetary rule far superior to any difficult to implement Federal Reserve policy. And while historically these systems have involved Gold or other commodity standards, it would be possible to implement gradually and without having to first define statutorily the dollar as redeemable in gold-banks would, of course, be free to write contracts of that sort, but high-powered or base money could be used as reserves in the meantime-with the stock thereof being frozen. In the previously linked book on the Theory of Free Banking, economist George Selgin outlined how this could all be achieved, in addition to the many reasons such a program would be a great reform for our monetary system.

Free Markets

Myriad subsidies, taxes, bailouts, handouts, and other Government interventions in the marketplace should be ended. We must liberate the economy from the controls that are holding it back, the interferences that get in the way of real progress. If we are to restore our economy to a healthily growing state, this is an imperative.

Free Trade

End the Export Import Bank and unilaterally repeal all protective tariffs. Restricting free exchange of goods across an arbitrary boundary is just bad economics.

Free Men

Whether it’s government intrusion on our civil liberties, like listening in on all our phone conversations and storing massive amounts of information on us using illegal writs of assistance, or claiming upwards of half of our earnings in some States, and half our wealth upon death, or compelling us to purchase health insurance on penalty of prohibitive fine-sorry, “tax”-which must be paid or else one is a criminal, it is clear that our Government no longer sees us as citizens, but as serfs. The leaders of both parties seek to enfranchise the foot soldiers of an invading army of a hostile country-the so-called ally who teach their children that half of our country belongs to them, who continue to keep an American as a prisoner of war-effectively erasing our own right to vote by cancellation-and have the unmitigated cheek to accuse attempts to counter this of disenfranchisement! We must reject and reverse this. The people should be free, free to keep the fruits of their labor, and retain their basic freedoms from Government control and intrusion. And free to determine the form of their own Government, and not have it decided by enemy combatants given access to the ballot box.

So that’s my simple slogan, and what it means to me. Free Soil, Free Speech, Free Labor, Free Banks, Free Markets, Free Trade, and Free Men.

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Filed under Conservatism, Economics, Freedom, General, History

Rand Paul’s Criticism of Reagan Is Unfair, Misplaced.

Recently-although not that recently, since I can’t work and keep totally on top of everything that happens in the world-Senator Rand Paul criticized the record of President Ronald Reagan on spending, comparing him unfavorably to Carter. I’m obviously saddened to hear this, as I’m actually a fan of Paul, and more obviously, and fan of Reagan. But I’m not afraid to criticize people I generally like when I think they’re wrong, even if their going astray really is a rare miss. Rand Paul cites statistics that are, as a matter of literal fact, accurate. However, Paul has fallen victim to a dangerous political myth: that of the All Powerful President. It is wrong to give all of the credit, or all of the blame, to the President of the United States for everything that happens during their term(s) in office. It is especially wrong to do so when the Congress is controlled by the opposition party. Although Republicans controlled the Senate from January 1981 to January 1987, at no point during Reagan’s Presidency-and indeed at no point from 1953 to 1995 did Republicans control the House of Representatives at all. You should consider that last point for a bit, also: the House of Representatives was at one point controlled by Democrats for forty two years. It is Congress, not the President, which ultimately possesses the power of the purse. And the House in particular is important in this regard. Measures for raising revenue-which in practice generally means the entire budget-must originate in the House of Representatives. So under the Reagan administration, a significant degree of the blame for increased spending should fall on Congress, with only a relatively small portion of the blame falling on Reagan for not fighting hard to restrain spending. Cynically, it is likely that doing so would have insured a Mondale Presidency-who would have basically run the country into the ground, to be perfectly frank. Similarly, Bill Clinton does not deserve the credit he is given for the restrained of Government growth in the 1990’s-the fact that Republicans regained control of the House for the first time in two generations-that’s 21 elections!-and fought impressively for an agenda today’s GOP wouldn’t dream of achieving, actually succeeding in achieving most of their ambitious goals. Clinton fought this every step of the way, but not quite to the bitter end the way Obama has proven frighteningly willing to. It is remarkable enough that Reagan managed to achieve as much as he did, in fact it’s likely that much of his agenda had to be achieved by giving spending to the House Democrats. But there is much, in retrospect, that we have learned from the Reagan years. Certainly not the lessons many people think we ought to have learned. But perhaps Paul has mostly learned the right lessons. For example, we have learned that deals to cut spending, traded for higher taxes, lead to higher taxes and higher spending-hence the familiar left wing talking point about how many times “Reagan raised taxes” (which, again, and even more strongly, is the responsibility of Congress and in particular the Democrats running the part of it from which revenue measures must originate. We have learned that “comprehensive immigration reform” meaning deals cut to secure the border traded for amnesty for illegal aliens, results in more illegal aliens and no actual border security-and leads, gradually, and unfortunately inevitably, to the demographic suicide of the United States of America. In short, we’ve learned what we should have known all along. The other side is evil and not to be trusted. You don’t compromise with the devil (speaking metaphorically here, butthurt atheists).

If you fault Reagan for anything, as a Conservative, or a True Liberal (rather than these Pre-Liberals who call themselves “Progressives” who would advance society by advancing an agenda to reconstruct Medieval society) it is being too compromising. Too willing to reach across the aisle and work with the other side. The struggle between individualism and collectivism is a fight between right and wrong, a moral battle. So I’d be quite pleased if, say, a President Paul would be unwilling to compromise in this fight. But be fair. Intellectually, I believe Reagan understood that. But unfortunately it is difficult to act like this in practice. The Leftists are our friends, our neighbors, our countrymen. As much victims of their own hateful, repugnant ideology as they are perpetrators. And Reagan was sentimental, and friendly to a fault. A man who could write, privately, of JFK being, underneath the boyish haircut, still old Karl Marx, but who never the less considered his adversary in Majority leader Tip O’Neill a friend. Hate the sin love the sinner, better Christians would say. These days it is easy to criticize that sort of sentimentality. The stakes are too high these days, to be that way anymore. Still, I really do think that Paul has erred, and done a disservice to Reagan and to history, with a criticism that is not really fair.

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Filed under Conservatism, Fiscal Policy, General, History, Liberals, Republicans

Back Again, Just In Time To Leave

There has been quite a lot to write about lately but…two things: The end of the summer semester was a big ramp up, so I was busy with that, and then, well, I’ve been on vacation for the past week. Unlike the President I only get the one vacation, and the Gulf (Naples, Fort Myers, and Sanibel, so not very far) was the first choice. Not to be to hard on the President, it’s just that you’d think he’d be working harder. Then again, given what happens when he does work, maybe it’s for the best. Still, if he is gonna take several vacations (his wife too) he could at least choose locations entirely in the US and particularly in the Gulf region. Well, whatever.

What other issues are there to talk about? Since the fall semester starts Monday, I won’t be posting much in the near future, either. Okay, um…Oh, the Federal Prosecutors really messed up that Blago case. I believe that he is definitely a pathological liar and probably guilty of most of the charges, although I confess this is not a carefully considered judgment. Well, they want to give it another go. You could, make the argument that continuing to pursue this case is a waste of money…You could, if your a Communist maybe! 😉

The JetBlue flight attendant (or as they might have said, um, steward..?) is a criminal, not a hero. I call um as I see um, and I’m sure many will disagree with me, but that matters not to me. If I worried about what people thought of my opinions, well, I would probably be too spineless to have any. Hey, I might be President some day if I do though! He liked to vote present you see…Okay, enough of the cheap shots at the Demander in Chief…there I go again…

The Mosque near Ground Zero has become a hot button issue. Many make the mistake of focusing on whether the argument centers on the right of private citizens to construct houses of worship on private property. Given that the Left, doesn’t care about property rights in almost any other context, that they are screaming about those rights in this context ought to give you some pause. Heck, Bobby Glibbs sounded like a son of the Confederacy, in the White House’s initial comments, [paraphrase] “It’s a local issue” (nothing else is, though….). The issue really is why people would want to build that house of worship there. The Imam behind the project (which had been called the Cordoba Initiative-back to that in a minute) has made statements which seriously make one question why anyone would consider him “moderate”. Actually, he just sounds like a typical Democrat politician. Of course, then again, as Bret Stephens pointed out, the media doesn’t seem to judge this issue well. However, I concede that there appears to be no legal recourse for those troubled by this. And I join others in wondering who Nancy Pelosi is talking about when she says that she and others want people opposed to the mosque to have their funding investigated. Of course, as usual, when people disagree with her, they must have been paid to do it (“astroturf” anyone?). Harry Reid and Governor Patterson are the most high profile Democrat opponents, but don’t be too impressed with Harry “My Son Won’t Use His Last Name and Obama has No N**** Dialect, Unless He Wants To” Reid…in the same press conference, we see the real reason…to help give him credibility to bash Republicans for opposing “benefits” for illegals who served on 9-11. Oh, I almost forgot, Cordoba was a city in Spain taken by the Moors, who built a mosque where the Church was, to show their conquest. Nice. I add to Ann Coulter’s famous suggestion “We should invade their countries, fill their leaders, and convert them to Christianity” a gem of my own “and after we’ve bombed Mecca, let’s have a “Grenada Initiative” and build an enormous Gay Bar where Abraham’s space rock was. It’s “outreach”. In case you can’t tell, I don’t care whose cage I rattle today.

The Fourteenth Amendment has come up in discussions lately. Lindsey Graham of all people thinks that we need to reconsider the birthright citizenship clause. As always, when The Southern Belle tries to do the right thing, he still manages to foul it up. No, we shouldn’t try and change the Fourteenth Amendment. We should need to. You see, in point of fact, the Republicans who created the Amendment anticipated the idea that birthright citizenship would be misapplied and given illegal aliens…well, actually, the main concern then was the Natives. Both in the language of the Amendment, and more explicitly in their statements, which convey intent, they made it so that, properly understood The Amendment would not be construed as applying to the Natives, to Aliens (legal too), and representatives of Foreign Governments. In terms of the text the full clause is:

All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside.

The key, in the text, is the phrase “subject to the jurisdiction thereof”. Those who have entered into the country in violation of our immigration laws who are not “documented” cannot be subject to the jurisdiction of the US, they are still, legally, nationals of their country of origin. Senator Jacob Howard of Ohio authored the clause, and had this to say “Indians born within the limits of the United States, and who maintain their tribal relations, are not, in the sense of this amendment, born subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.”, and Senator Lyman Trumbull, Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee added that “subject to the jurisdiction thereof” was to be understood to mean  “not owing allegiance to anybody else…subject to the complete jurisdiction of the United States. So the the clause “will not, of course, include persons born in the United States who are foreigners, aliens, who belong to the families of ambassadors or foreign ministers accredited to the Government of the United States”. There is quite a lot more that could be said about this, but at the moment I will let those words speak for themselves, only adding that an Originalist interpretation of the Fourteenth Amendment clearly does not support the notion of automatic citizenship for the children of illegal aliens. Unfortunately, this is not the practice of the current Federal government. But a lot of current Government policies are just totally wrong, so this is not shocking.

There is a lot else I could mention, but I have spoken about that which truly makes me want to speak up. A lot of other stuff is just not that interesting right now. See you all, um, at some later date…

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Filed under Announcements, Common Sense, Freedom, General, History, personal, Republicans

Just how historic is a Republican Victory in Massachusetts?

There hasn’t been a Class 1 (Senior Senator) Republican Senator in the Massachusetts delegation since Henry Cabot Lodge Junior. The seat which Scott Brown will soon occupy has been held from 1963 up until his death by Edward Kennedy. Before that, it was occupied by Benjamin Smith, who succeeded JFK into the seat when he became President in 1961.  JFK got the seat in 1953. Now, Edward Brooke (R) held the Class 2 (Junior) seat until 1978, after which Paul Tsongas (D) 1984, when he was replaced with the Junior Senator in that seat to this day, John F Kerry. All ten of Mass’s Representatives have been Democrats since 1997. This has been for decades a strongly Democratic state in Congress.

This is a big deal.

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Are we really Jeffersonians?

I have long thought that Jefferson was one of the greatest men in American history-I have always thought that he exemplified the ideals I believe in-having a political philosophy of Liberty a limited government as so many classical liberals did, Jefferson appealed to me as a kind of hero. Well, interestingly enough, Myron Ebell of the Competitive Enterprise Institute has sent an email to Daniel Hannan explaining my he thinks that the real Jeffersonian was…John Adams? Well, interestingly enough, it would restore some continuity to the classical liberal tradition in US History. I previously tended to think that it went something like this: The Jeffersonian Democratic Republicans were the proponents of Liberty, and they sort of passed the torch to the fire breathing Jacksonian Democrats-the Whigs, their opponents later spawned the Republican party which had a mixed record but when compared to a party which was increasingly about being proslavery, quickly became the “liberals”. After Grover Cleveland, the Democrat’s last gasp of classical liberalism, the became more or less the insane Socialists they are today-except a little more religious-with William Jennings Bryan at the helm. During the Progressive Era, classical Liberalism was absent from both parties-it was killed in the Republican party when that bastard Czolgosz, killed McKinley and made that wacko Roosevelt President. Once again going through a rough patch in the New Deal era, after the disaster of the Progressive Hoover, classical liberalism was on life support to be tended to by Eisenhower. Another firebrand Progressive Republican would nearly kill it again, while at the same time giving the party a huge boost long term-his name was none other than Richard Milhouse Nixon-but while that was going on the classical liberals started to revive outside of politics, with the emergence of William F Buckley and National Review (also Reason). Ultimately modern classical liberalism would emerge from their efforts and get back into the White House with Ronald Reagan-and we’ve been in another period of wane ever since (if history is any indication we may be in for a “long slumber”)…

BUT, I’m beggining to rethink the early part of that history. I will admit that I have always had a sort of schizophrenic view of Jefferson’s view of the French Revolution (on the one hand, I applaud the idea of promoting liberty abroad, on the other, I mean seriously, how could he not see it for what it was?). I was troubled to learn of his admiration for Rousseau, whose philosophy I have always found to be disgustingly illiberal. I am not a wonk as Adams apparently was, so I’m not so into all the Montesquieu stuff etc. apart from the fact that I like how the Founders put his ideas into practice. I tend to be more abstract, so unlike either of them I look way back to Locke for my influence. I tended to think of Jefferson as a Lockean classical liberal, but-maybe I was wrong? Dunno. What I do know is that all these men were complex figuresthe all exchange ideas with one another, and they were all fundamentally more classically liberal than almost any politician today. I don’t think I agree with Myron that FDR and Jefferson were so alike-maybe that chain smoking Corporatist fancied it that way, but then again he fancied himself a kind of God, too.

What I’m taking away from this personally is that the liberal in practice was Adams, in theory, Jefferson. And I like theory better anyway. 😉

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Filed under Conservatism, Freedom, History, personal, Thinkers

Over reacting-and someone else’s poor sense of history…

So Pat was discussing an article about how the Young Republicans have apparently elected some racist to lead them…and I reacted a little less than maturely. Well, okay, you got me. I hear certain words, and, like a trained dog, I bite. Needs work. But whatever! Let’s take a moment to more soberly analyze the issue.

Are there any adults left in the GOP?

Well, maybe not…however, that begs the question, are there any adults left anywhere? I kinda doubt that, too. And if there are adults, it ain’t at the Beast.

Thirty-eight-year-old Audra Shay’s campaign to become the next chairman of the Young Republicans went from obscure to infamous over the past week, after The Daily Beast revealed details of posts of her Facebook account. Specifically, a thread where one of her friends posts that “Obama Bin Lauden [sic] is the new terrorist… Muslim is on there side [sic]… need to take this country back from all of these mad coons… and illegals,” and Shay responds eight minutes later with: “You tell em Eric! lol.”

Following those revelations, several Young Republican colleagues urged Shay to remove herself from tomorrow’s election at the group’s convention in Indianapolis—a request Shay, the favorite going in to the vote, has pointedly refused.

Naturally, the rub is: she won. I’m not going to defend these statements, but I want to point out a couple of things:

Following those revelations, several Young Republican colleagues urged Shay to remove herself from tomorrow’s election

NO WAI! Some Young Republicans were made uncomfortable by her remarks? Who would have thought? Good for them.

a request Shay, the favorite going in to the vote, has pointedly refused.

This is ballsy. Respectably so. But you can be ballsy and still bad-and if I may exercise PREJUDICE, what she said looks pretty damn bad.

Well, okay, nothing really offensive just yet. Nothing to react about. What set me off? Well, for one thing, I doubt most of her supporters were even aware of the fact that she did what she did-to characterize all young Republicans as racist would be stretching it. To their credit they don’t yet explicitly say so. Let’s keep going though…

Seen against a recent trend of racist emails sent by grassroots Republican politicos and the historic trend of Southern conservatives’ realignment into the GOP, it is evidence that the GOP is becoming the Party of Lincoln in name only, a role reversal that has placed the right wing on the wrong side of history.

Anyone feel like the first line is just plain made up? Well, I digress…Note the subtle implication-so subtle you probably would miss it, but really stingingly obvious-maybe not intentional, but the comment is then not offensive but stupid-that all Southerners, simply by virtue of their geography, are racist. Note the whiggish historiography, too. And note the buzz word “party of Lincoln”-the party of restricting slavery from entering new territories, or the party of tariffs, or the party of infrastructure projects, or the party of abolition or..well, what “Party of Lincoln” are they speaking of? Lincoln was many things, but far from perfect (and note that I’m hardly anti-Lincoln-see here starting at10 for a discussion between me and a libertarian about Lincoln). Well, okay, moving on.

To understand why this really is a big deal, you have to have a sense of history.

And as we shall see, in an attempt to make a much bigger deal out of this than it really is, Beast either betrays their ignorance of history, or willfully distorts it.

and what needs to be done to address its now-gaping diversity deficit and rebuild a big tent that lies in tatters today.

I’m going to say something “racist”: Diversity doesn’t matter. Or it shouldn’t. Who cares how “diverse” you are? You can be a “diverse” group but it will have no positive or negative impact on whether your group’s ideas are right or not. There is no inherent value to being “diverse”-in fact, anyone who thinks otherwise has a-dare I say PREJUDICE?-bias against homogeneous groups. Racial homogeneous groups are called “races”. Dare I say it? Those who whine that a party isn’t “diverse” enough are-dun dun DUN-RACIST! But I don’t look at the world that way. I see individuals-they either want to be free, or they don’t. If only white male southerners want to be free, well, that is, how you say, unfortunate…

The Party of Lincoln was founded on the principles of individual freedom and national unity. But it has become the party of the Southern conservatives it was founded to confront.

Yes my Southern friends. By virtue of your geography being the same as some slave owners and segregationists in history, you are racist. For an article which supposedly eschews racism, there is a lot of group guilt being thrown around…But were the Southerners who succeeded from the Union “conservative”? They were their opponents “liberal”? No. Not that it matters. History is not a crime that can be pinned on subsequent generations. BUT-much of the anti-slavery movement was founded on religious sentiment-something that, apart from environmental fervor, the left rejects. Similarly, Southern slave owners could only claim “classical liberalism” by rejecting the idea that slaves were human and thus had no fundamental Lockean rights-a point which I’ll get back to when I criticize the Beast’s mention of abortion, since it is eerie how similar the situations are (HINT: Pregnant women aren’t the slaves in this metaphor). Moreover, the Southern “conservatives” defended slavery with an explicitly authoritarian communist response that slaves, who were cared for and fed by their nanny state owners, where better off than Northern “wage slaves”- The North far more resembled conservative industrial progress than did the South-cotton pickin’ has a low carbon footprint, ya understand 😉 But not everything GOP in that time should be praised. The New York Tribune’s foreign correspondent was none other than Karl Marx.

Social conservatives are engaged in a domestic culture war against modern individual freedom movements, ranging from gay rights to reproductive rights.

Apparently gays are the new slaves. Oh, and pregnant women, too. But, in point of fact, at least in regard to abortion the Beast gets things backwards! Abortion on demand is an “individual freedom” movement? You mean arguing for one person’s freedom to control another? Just like the slave owners? OH SNAP! Yes. I went there. But how can the Beast get away with framing the issue this way? Simple. In the words of Lincoln himself-“We all declare for liberty; but in using the same word we do not all mean the same thing. With some the word liberty may mean for each man to do as he pleases with himself, and the product of his labor; while with others, the same word may mean for some men to do as they please with other men, and the product of other men’s labor. Here are two, not only different, but incompatible things, called by the same name — liberty. And it follows that each of the things is, by the respective parties, called by two different and incompatible names — liberty and tyranny.”

All this can be traced to a Faustian bargain Republicans made precisely 100 years after President Lincoln was re-elected. Between 1860 and 1960—the Civil War and the civil-rights era—contemporary red and blue state maps were entirely reversed, with the South voting solidly Democratic.

No. But, hey, they Myth of the Solid South is pervasive. So debunking it never gets old. In the presidential election of 1928, Moderate Republican Herbert Hoover made major inroads in the South over Al Smith. In fact, there is some truth to there being an inversion, however. The map IS almost exactly the opposite of this map-which may explain the later insinuation that Goldwater was “racist”. But then, what about ’76? Carter got votes extensively from the South. So Jimmy Carter is a conservative racist? But why pick the end of the glorious era at 1960? Well, 1960 bears some resemblance to 2008, I’ll give you that. One could argue that on moderate-ness and his anti-Kennedy arguments Nixon resembles McCain. One could also argue that on charisma and appeal points, JFK resembles Obama. But the clearest point of realignment is in fact the ’72 election-not just the South but the whole country went Republican. And remember, that makes one of the most successful Republicans electorally Richard Milhouse “Southern [i.e. racist] Strategy” Nixon. 😛

Lyndon Johnson signed civil-rights legislation that Republican conservatives like Barry Goldwater opposed. In return, Goldwater won an unprecedented five Southern states in 1964 as the conservative Republican nominee, including 87 percent of the vote in Mississippi. With the realignment of Southern conservatives, Republicans’ belief in individual freedom morphed into support for states’ rights, the longtime banner of secessionists and segregationists.

That is, Barry Goldwater, a liberty loving Republican, is blamed as the racist instigator of the “morphing” of the GOP into supporting the Tenth Amendment. By the way that Bill of Rights thing? That’s a banner of secessionist and segregationists. Thought you ought to know.

African Americans got the message

Socialism pays. It really does.

while this shift helped Republicans achieve seven out of 10 presidential victories between 1968 and 2004, the country is now decidedly more diverse and it ain’t going back. If the GOP had stayed true to its roots, it would be perfectly positioned to benefit from this demographic evolution. Instead, it is facing not only a diversity deficit, but a demographic nightmare.

Huh? Well, sure, we face demographic problems, but if we had lost seven out of ten of those elections, or worse, all of them, by “staying true to our roots” and supporting welfare and affirmative racism, would we be “positioned to benefit from this demographic evolution”? No. We wouldn’t be around at all. And maybe we wouldn’t deserve to be.

In 1999, there were 13 Republican congressmen from Teddy Roosevelt’s home state of New York, now there are only two.

Quick comment-Teddy was a Republican HOW again?

only 19 percent of Americans born after 1977 identify with the GOP.

Yes but young people-as the Beast, Shay, and many other examples demonstrate-are stupid. So what? Now if you are born Democrat you die Democrat? But wait, I thought Republicans were racist because they used to be Southern Democrats!?!?! I can’t follow this anymore! My head is spinning!

Even the term “big tent”—a banner advanced by Ronald Reagan—is dismissed as code for “squishes” or closet liberals.

Reagan good, Goldwater bad? But, wait, Beast forgot guilt by association!

The Republican Party must return to its roots as the Party of Lincoln to revive over the long run. It must reach out to different regions and not just play to the Southern conservative base. It must actively recruit candidates who reflect the full diversity of our country—by articulating an alternative entrepreneurial philosophy of how best to rise out of poverty and achieve the American Dream. It can find common cause with independents and centrists on the issues of fiscal responsibility and national security. But to connect with a new generation, it must resolve the core contradiction at the heart of modern conservatism—the rhetoric of expanding individual freedom is at odds with strident social-conservative policies that alienate anyone with libertarian impulses. The reality is that all young voters are less conservative on social issues ranging from gay rights to the role of religion in politics. Applying narrow social litmus tests to the active exclusion of all others will only further isolate the party.

The Beast’s prescription is OK. I reject the very idea of a “contradiction at the heart of modern conservatism” but I’m all for reaching out to more libertarian minded voters. The way to do it is not to say “Yeah, golly I sure hate religious nuts and love killin’ babies and gay sex and what not.” Who is trying to apply a litmus test again? I have no problem with the Beast’s alleged libertarian beliefs. They clearly have a problem with social conservatives and it isn’t merely that “reality” is working against them-it’s a deep-seated hatred-like the dictator Bismarck before them and like Stalin to the Trotskiites, they are engaged in a Kulturkampf, a war to “purge” those nasty social conservatives from the Party-who, ironically, just want to be let alone (how’s that for libertarian-oops, it’s secessionist too isn’t it…)-and who are being made into a caricature of bible thumping creationists who want to ban condoms and sex altogether rather than people who happen to think that fetuses have rights too, that religion should be legal in public, and that schools shouldn’t decide whether your children learn about sex for you-so as to marginalize them so people see no problem purging them, throwing the unborn babies out with the bathwater, so to speak.

My real problem is not so much with Beast-and certainly not with Pat-In fact, a major issue I have is that I AGREE in large part with the pill they want us to swallow. But they are going about it all wrong. More importantly to me, their view of history is all wrong. I know that because so much of what they say grates on me, lesser mortals will fail to see the good in them at all. I suggest they clean up their act. Shays too.

And things aren’t as bad as they seem either.

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Filed under Blogs, Conservatism, Freedom, General, History, Liberals, Republicans, Thinkers

Gore compares himself to Winston Churchill-What an A-hole

UPDATE: Times seems to be messing with the article-the story is also being talked about here.

I consider myself an American Churchillian. So this pisses me off. Gore is making gobs of money off of a scam that everyone in the political establishment just nods at. Churchill in no way profited from his warnings, and it really was the case that no one listened to him. If Winston were alive to today, he’d sock Gore so hard he’d stay plastered.

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Filed under Dumbasses, History, Klimacht, Liberals