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Taking the Senate Doesn’t Matter

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I’m writing here because I can – it doesn’t mean that we’re returning to full time writing.

To the point.  A lot of you out there are putting your support behind McConnell and Cochran in order to assure a majority in the Senate.  Let me stop you from making that mistake by laying out some reasons not to and then explaining why getting them out is more important than taking the Senate.

First, what they did in Mississippi is as insulting as it gets.  Even Hillary Clinton spoke positive of the GOP going after true conservatives and “expanding their base” (as if).  Of course she doesn’t give a hoot about republicans expanding their base – she is just happy to see conservatives lose.  Well, it was McConnell and the GOP establishment who used the most disgusting tricks against their own party members that I’ve seen in my adult life – calling McDaniel a racist, and suggesting that his anti-Obama sentiments were bad (which implies Thad thinks that Obama is peachy).  How can a conservative possibly pull the lever for either of these guys who is willing to sell you out so quickly?

Second, they’re not true conservatives.  Oh, I know that they rate well with certain think tanks or conservative grades; but many of those votes are showboat in nature.  They make the vote to get their score; not to push the conservative agenda.  Let’s put it to the true test.

How many of you can name one instance where either of these boobs has shrunk government or expanded freedom?  Am I wrong or were both of these guys in office for the second most expansive growth of government?  Oh, and didn’t the GOP have control of both Houses?  And didn’t we also have an establishment guy in the Executive?  How well did that work out for conservative principles?  How much limitation was set on the fed?  No Child Left Behind, McCain Feingold, and three times the domestic spending of Clinton; 20 times that of Reagan!  All of that was done with republican lead House and Senate.

But let us look at what change would be made if we took the Senate.  McCain already said that he was going to overturn the Reid Filibuster Rule – giving the Senate Democrats more power than the Senate Republicans currently have.  But let us suppose that we want to cut spending.  Okay, it starts in the House, passes the Senate and then – crap – the veto comes.  Do we have 2/3rds of either house?  Nope.  So the bill is dead.  Knowing that the cowards in the House and Senate will simply sit on everything until 2016.  So, THEN we will get stuff done right?  Based on what evidence?  The House could have used the power of the purse now against this President on any number of issues (Obamacare was the failed promise) but Johnny Boehner dropped that tool like a hot iron.  They could have impeached on any number of executive overreaches (hiding witnesses from Congress, refusing to enforce law passed by Congress, handing out waivers in spite of law, etc.) and yet they didn’t even attempt.

The GOP will do nothing!  They will look to the next election to gain the White House and then attempt to put in a big government republican like Jeb Bush.  And then he will likely lose (like they always do).  That doesn’t seem to matter though does it?  I mean, McConnell supported Romney, McCain, Dole, both Bush boys and even Ford against Reagan.  He’s a Rockefeller Republican and so are the rest of his ilk.  They know how to lose.  If they somehow end up winning (doubtful) do you think they will finally make conservative advances?  If yes, based on what evidence?  Rhetoric?  They will expand their tentacles into cronyism, they will grow government, get involved in international affairs we have no business in, expand domestic spy programs, complicate the tax code further, and pass amnesty (if not already done).

The only way to change our government is to get rid of one of the two evils – not vote for the lesser evil.  If McConnell loses his election in Kentucky and Thad his in Mississippi; who cares?  Those are two very conservative states that will boot those senators in the next election cycle (hopefully for true conservatives).  If you reelect them then the establishment will be emboldened and they will continue to crush the Tea Party with their allies from the left.  If you vote them out then we get two democrats who will be able to do nothing in a republican controlled House and a possible slight controlled Senate.  One is the path of no change and the other is a path of complete change.

We must lay the groundwork for the future – and that isn’t found on reelecting two guys who haven’t done any conservative change in 30+ years of politics.  Send a message to the ones who insulted you and do the unthinkable; stay home or, as I plan to do in my state of Kentucky, vote Democrat.

Original Post:  Sentry Journal

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Baby Boomers: The Selfish Generation

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Let me preface this piece with a few necessities.  First, I grew up being told that my generation (X) was the worst.  We were lazy, the television generation who expected everything to be given to us.  No doubt every generation before mine had to deal with the same “when I was your age”, self-absorbed and forward blaming rhetoric.  Never mind that we are the product of our parents (how did we become the television generation?).

Second, this isn’t an unthoughtful whining or a blind pointing at my parents for all of the world’s woes.  I always found it somewhat sickening that my parent’s generation (not necessarily my parents) were willing to place their life struggles on the “greatest generation” that preceded them.  It took a lot of reflection to make sure I wasn’t simply following suit.

Lastly, obviously not all baby boomers fall into the stereotypes below, but those who shaped their generation tend to and those who dominate their politics have few exceptions.  Being a baby boomer doesn’t make you wicked.

That said…

“The Baby Boomers are the most self-centered, self-seeking, self-interested, self-absorbed, self-indulgent, self-aggrandizing generation in American history,” Paul Begala

There’s a strange dichotomy when it comes to the “Worst Generation” (the Baby Boomers); they stressed individual freedom from the social cohorts (“If it feels good do it”) but couldn’t stretch that ideal to fit into their economic philosophies.  Champions for drug use, sexual liberation, and a no-consequence society understood on some level that their imprudent practices didn’t bode well for economic stability.  No need for responsibility – the commune would supply.

The problem is that nobody in the commune had anything to supply and, eventually, those who became successful became miniature Ayn Rands.  Greed for this generation was either evil or righteous and no equilibrium was found.  Selfishness flourished on both sides.  Baby boomers are the generation with the most tied up money in our nation’s history and also the generation who demands the most in entitlement.  No wonder we constantly hear clamoring about the income gap.  The gap isn’t so much the problem, it’s the mentality of this generation and their refusal to accept arithmetic’s conclusions.   

For instance, Third Way, a Democratic think tank found that in 1962 about 32 cents per dollar was invested and only 14% on entitlements but by 2030 we are projected to have less in investments and entitlement spending above 60%.  Such math should move the populous to implement major reform so that generations after aren’t bankrupted at the expense the previous generation’s entitlements, but that’s not the case.

Baby boomers not only overwhelmingly vote to protect their sacred cows (Social Security and Medicare) they have a history of voting for expansions.  Every baby boomer president we’ve had has expanded entitlements; most recently Bush’s prescription drug plan, and of course, Obamacare.  Every reform attempt made has been completely destroyed by the largest voting bloc in the nation – the baby boomers.

Another baby boomer dichotomy exists that takes selfishness to a completely different level with illogical conclusions pulled from every philosophy to support their venal greed.  While hippies and bohemians criticized corporate or individual greed, they fancied their drug-induced sexual orgies.  Responsibility be damned; they aren’t hurting anyone – they’re all about peace and love.  Meanwhile 30 million voices were never heard or asked of their opinion.

The actions that lead to the decision of Roe v Wade may be the most selfish taken by that generation.  While they sneered at corporatists for hoarding “unneeded” money, they were willing to deny life to a person for the benefit of sidestepping responsibility and at times worse, in order to cut ties with a financial burden.  They made a barbaric evil a mainstream badge of courage.

Today abortion is less popular in America than it has been since the absurd ruling of Roe v Wade.  Polls over the last 20 years have shown a steady decline in support among the younger age groups; the baby boomers have remained steady in their creed.  In fact, the baby boomers are the only group that support it – those 70 years old and older don’t, nor do the 30 and younger.  These generations X and Y are even being called the “pro-life generation” in some circles; something that would have undoubtedly been more prevalent had 30 million been allowed an opinion.

Hopefully the next generation can move beyond their partial extermination and correct the folly of their parents.  That folly has created the greatest debt in our nation’s history by astronomical and incomprehensible measure, destroyed an infrastructure given to them, shipped a large portion of our best jobs overseas, wrecked manufacturing, ruined our good name internationally, and currently fills the chambers of the most pathetic congressional body this nation has experienced, ignores Constitutional law and the list goes on.

So…we have a lot to do.  Let’s start by removing this generation from all political offices.  What say you?

Original Post:  The Sentry Journal

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David Angelo and eEconomics – Special Series Part 1

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I was recently guided to a series of videos by one of our contributors (Patrick) that I enjoyed so much that I was compelled to share it with all of you.  I will start a little series that includes today’s introduction.

First let me introduce Mr. David Angelo.  He’s smart, dry, witty, and conservative.  That’s enough for me to like him, but perhaps his best quality is his ability to reason complicated things simply.  He displays this in a youtube series called eEconomics (which is what I will be sharing here with his permission).   While these videos don’t go into great depth about subjects that many of us feel well versed on, I still managed to learn quite a bit.

David is a comedian, a writer (previously for Jimmy Fallon), and apparently a bit learned in economics.  I’m no critic so I won’t dive into the details about why I enjoy him.  I will say that in a very short period of time I’ve learned to like him as much as Gutfeld and Crowder.  Perhaps he’s found himself a new niche.  The videos are below and you always go to his website: http://davidangelo.info/home.php

Todays’ first video, a little old now, briefly tackles gas prices.  I will add this video along with the second since they basically cover the same subject.  Enjoy and give me some feedback.

Original Post:  The Sentry Journal

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Politics is Scandalous: Media Continues to Protect Obama

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For weeks I’ve been visiting the Huffington Post and looking for stories on Benghazi.  To nobody’s surprise, I found almost nothing.  On the days that big stories broke on even the major news networks, nothing was to be found on the HuffPo.  The last few days have been quite different – Benghazi everywhere!  When the IRS and AP stories broke, nothing on HuffPo, but the stories are mentioned now.  Is the HuffPo that slow to respond to news?

The stories are to be found on the biggest political blog in the world, but they were buried for bigger headlines like Angelina’s mastectomy and the ills of cheap labor overseas.  All of those recent stories on the scandal subjects are, of course, in defence of the administration.  Go figure.

Peter Goodman praises the IRS for going after the Tea Party groups:

“In castigating government as the root of all evil while portraying taxation as a form of tyranny, the Tea Party is no less than a mass celebration of the evasion of the basic responsibilities of American citizenship. Common sense alone tells you that people drawn to its ranks may feel extra temptation to find ways to limit what they surrender to the rogue federal bureaucrats who have supposedly seized the nation.”

I wonder if Goodman would be so inclined to allow the IRS to go after Muslim groups because those who are drawn to its ranks may feel extra temptation to fund terrorism.  It’s funny how the words “equality” and “fair” are thrown around by liberals until they get a chance to stick it to the right.  The right doesn’t deserve equality though because, as I’ve been told, we are the ones who abuse equality; apparently by being wealthy, white, and capitalists (I can only claim the last one with certainty).

The rest of the lemmings at HuffPo have written these scandals off as political attacks.  Their sentiments can be wrapped up in the first line of the genius of Barbra Streisand, “Sometimes in the face of national tragedy, politics should take a backseat”.  Unless that tragedy is due to politics.  The most obvious response to this kind of blind protectionist rhetoric is that all of these scandals are political in nature.  I don’t remember her bypassing politics when it came to her stance on 9/11’s inside job.

Sadly, they’re all the same.  They all poo poo the failures of this administration and continue to find excuses for the President.  Why is this?  Why continue to support someone who has failed us so often?  Even Chris Matthews and Jon Stewart this week have had to publically cast their doubts to the sainthood of Obama.  Those doubts will diminish as these stories fade and their love for him will return (it took Chris 22 minutes).  I think that Gutfeld had it right in his first Breitbart piece (yay!),

“In fact, the media are so desperate to be liked by Obama that they are willing to overlook anything unseemly. When I look at the multitude of scandals, I cannot blame the President. My disgust is reserved for the media who let him wander so far off the reservation–because they love him more than their own principles.”

He goes on to call the media Obama’s enablers not unlike a drug addicts mom who refuses to cut him off for fear of losing his love.  Meanwhile the addict feeds off of that love, money, and attention.  This is the second reason this is political.  The media has not done its job.  When Nixon committed his political crimes, the media was ready and willing to ready the noose.  That’s what the media is for, to get the tough and dirty truths to the people so that we can hold them accountable.  When the media is in bed with those in government, who passes on the pillow talk?  Partisans!

Thankfully we also have bloggers and conservative groups who are ready and willing to take the responsibility of the old media, which is perhaps the motive behind the IRS scandal.

Original Post: The Sentry Journal

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How the World Continues

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Too often it is the case that we focus on what is wrong with the world rather than what is right.  That truth spans through various positions of criticism be it politics, economics, or faith.  On the latter, I have often heard scoffers of faith (specifically Christianity) speak of the ill that Christianity has brought the world as a way of demeaning the religion.  I must reject this notion.  I cannot deny that evil men have taken the banner of Christianity and have done terrible things with its power, but Christianity has harmed no one.  It cannot.

The purpose of this post, however, is not to defend the faith, but to point out the goodness of people.  Frequently our attention is turned to those who choose to do wrong, who harm others, who work on behalf of evil.  Not today.  Below is a piece written by a girl that I know.  She is getting married soon and keeps a simple personal blog.  You will find the link to her blog at the bottom of the page if you choose to visit.  I know many individuals locally who are doing a lot of good deeds: dentists who are giving free dental care in third world nations, couples who are building sanitary stations in similar nations, individuals who are packing lunches for kids at school for the weekend, others who purchased Christmas presents and made Thanksgiving/Christmas dinner for families who have incarcerated or dead fathers.  The list goes on and on.

I’ll stop writing with this one last thought.  Regularly I recall a time when I was a boy and I learned the difference between the usage of the words “good” and “well”.  A teacher told some students to “do good”.  He was corrected by one of the astute students who said, “Don’t you mean ‘do well’”?  He simply replied, “No, do good”.  And that is my suggestion to our readers.  We can argue politics daily with fervency and zealousness with little to no impact.  Selfless acts of goodness to other human beings are what will make real differences.  It might not save the republic, but it might save that person – and then again, it might save the republic as well.

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Last weekend, Brian and I decided to head to Bed, Bath, and Beyond to start our wedding registry. We were led upstairs to an office, where we were handed a binder filled with pictures of the various assortment of dinnerware the store offered. There were no prices, just pictures and their descriptions, and we were told we needed eight place settings of whatever set we chose.

I flipped through the pages for a moment and settled on a set I liked. I turned the book around to show the nice lady and to ask the price, and the nice lady said, “Oh, those are $88.”

“$88 for a set of 8? That’s not bad!” I replied.

“Oh no.” I think the lady was trying not to laugh. “$88 per place setting. Those are Vera Wang.”

The look on my face must have been incredulous, because the lady quickly added, “I know that sounds like a lot of money, but you’re getting married! You deserve it! It’s the one time to get anything you want for free.”

And so began our registry. We spent the next two hours being followed around, pressed to scan (literally) the most expensive item in each category, and pressured to meet a “scan quota” at every stop.  When we politely tried to argue that we already had a perfectly good food processor, six cookie sheets, and a quality used set of mixing bowls, our objections were met with a smile and, “But this is your chance to get the best cookie sheets. You’re getting married – you deserve this!” The best suitcase? You deserve it! The best toaster oven? You deserve it! The best pots and pans? You deserve it!

We left the store, me nearly fuming and Brian feeling nauseous. As we looked over the $3,000 worth of items we had scanned, we failed to find more than one or two that were even reasonably priced – and we needed about half of what was on the list. I just shook my head as I reported to Brian that our dishes and the $9 cloth napkins the lady had added of her own accord would alone cost over $600. Six hundred dollars.

We cancelled the registry.

Two days later, God called us to sponsor two precious little boys. Meet Abishek and Akshay.

 photo-1

And suddenly, it all made sense. The reason why the registry made us sick and angry was because it was a waste.  It was extravagant. Most of the items were unnecessary. And we realized with a heavy heart that it was all a lie.

We don’t deserve anything.

God gives us joy and material possessions, not because we deserve it, but because He is good. God is incredible. And you know what? He does deserve something. God deserves our praise and our giving, which He asks us to share with others.

Abishek and Akshay deserve our giving, deserve our sacrifice, because God has asked us to share with them.  Brian and I want to give as much as we can because we want these little boys to know Jesus. We want them to know that God gives us grace only because He loves us, not because we deserve it.

Don’t you worry, we will still have a registry – just at Target rather than a specialty store. We will still have some things that we want more than we need. And I will still add my KitchenAid mixer because one day I will be out of nursing school and will actually have time to bake.

But most of the items on our registry won’t be the most expensive or the absolute best you can buy. We came to this decision not because of frugality, but because Brian and I don’t want to build our marriage on “stuff” (Did you know that money and stuff is the number one reason why couples get a divorce? Irony.). God tells us that marriage is about serving Him better together than we could alone, that marriage is a chance to see the most complete image of Him we can experience here on this earth. He says, “Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house.  Test me in this, says the Lord Almighty, and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it.” - Malachi 3:10

Brian and I want to build our marriage on God’s image of marriage, not man’s image of getting all the free stuff that you want. We want to honor God together. And we are starting by sharing Jesus’ love with two precious little boys.

And one day, if we get one, maybe God will even let me feed the homeless with my KitchenAid mixer.

http://ifonlythismoment.blogspot.com/

Note: I added the link to the post for added linkage mojo.-Matt

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America Domesticated

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Domesticate: to take, especially by generations of breeding, to live in close association with human beings as a pet or work animal and usually creating a dependency so that the animal loses its ability to live in the wild.

I have the most pathetic dog in the world.  He’s a cock-a-poo.  He’s fat, lazy, and the only thing that qualifies as effort in his life is when he begs.  Still, we are pathetic owners.  We love him because he is cute and because he is ours.  We are those bad owners who give him food from the table and treats for tricks.  He sleeps on a nice bed, has his toys replaced when they go bad (due to his mistreatment of them), and has more money than can be justified spent on his health (shots for dog are more expensive than shots for kids?).  The good thing is that he will never run away because he is utterly lost more than 10 feet from the house.  He returns willingly and wanders cautiously.  He knows he has it good and he isn’t willing to try to make it on his own – he is owned by us.

Do I need to draw out the metaphor?  In what I amount to an inhumane act, our governments (local, state, and federal) have domesticated a large portion of our population in the ironic spirit of humanism.  In the same breath that speaks of care and comfort to the less fortunate comes the tyranny of superiority over the subordinate.  Man is not made to be the play thing of another man, nor do we as Americans believe in the hierarchy of men among men.  Our equality is measured in our nature; even if unequal in assets.  America, however, has floundered into the seemingly natural territory of masters and minions in an apparently vain attempt to counter that very condition.  Tycoons have become senators and moguls, our presidents.

I will not question the heart of Franklin Roosevelt when he looked on the “Oakies” in the mist of the Dustbowl.  No doubt their burden was more daunting than we can understand and Roosevelt’s empathy weighed heavy on their behalf.  It would have been hard to criticize him when he spoke had you lived through 7 years of drought and “black blizzards”.  Men who were independent and hardworking moved to the Midwest to build their future with their hands.  They bet everything on their fortitude and God’s grace.  When the rain stopped coming and the dust replaced sky they didn’t turn to handouts, but suffered with pride.  Pride can only stand so long against hunger, loss, and death.  Survival was key and FDR came with something that the climate refused to bring – hope.

History will remember the nation’s response to the Dustbowl in one of two ways; as an egregious takeover and influence of the private sector by the federal government or a benevolent act of necessary interference for a desperate citizenry.  The truth is likely somewhere in between, but philosophy and politics aren’t as concrete as outcomes and consequences.  Measuring those results is as convoluted as our judgment of them.  The child of an “Oakie” would likely define the success of those programs instituted quite differently than a Nutmegger.  Time offers no proper translation as we see further aftereffects today in the form of America’s dependency mentality.  While it may not be fair to lay that liability on FDR’s response to the Dustbowl and Great Depression entirely, surely a sensible man would concede that it helped propagate the approach.

“The best laid schemes of mice and men
Go often awry,
And leave us nothing but grief and pain,
For promised joy!”
The great iniquity is presently the natural deterrence to self-sufficiency from an ever expanding caretaker role filled by our government.  However, an abandonment of Americans in need was a reality and the fate of those thousands sat in a balance that tilted heavily in the direction of death due to the empty counter of relief.  Man failed man in their time of need, and a careful study of American history will underscore that evil inclination.  Those who suffered the fate of a cursed land were abandoned and segregated by those whom the land blessed.  Humanity utterly failed on an individual level and required Government to fill a hole that brothers would not.

The secondary sin may have been predictable – that our foundations of individualism would erode with the mounting sea of government rolling in with a relentless tide.  That is a very heavy price that has been reverberated by many before me; but it is also misleading.  The deception comes in the notion that our chief founding principle is liberty – a tenet that we here at The Sentry Journal cherish deeply.  Allow me to quote a man whom we often quote when we speak of liberty.

“Bad men cannot make good citizens. It is when a people forget God that tyrants forge their chains. A vitiated state of morals, a corrupted public conscience, is incompatible with freedom. No free government, or the blessings of liberty, can be preserved to any people but by a firm adherence to justice, moderation, temperance, frugality, and virtue; and by a frequent recurrence to fundamental principles.”
Patrick Henry

This is our foundation on which a great nation was built.  Our liberty is a vain tower of sand, easily washed away if not properly erected on the solid ground of true principle as man relates to man.  Our greed robs us of the purpose of government – to unite men on “foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness.”

The point of all of this is this; many of us search for a renewal of independence in America as if that independence is our foundation, goal, and god.  Independence is merely a weapon of defense for a moral and responsible man.  Liberty is a responsibility that cannot be properly directed by the immoral and immature any more than a domesticated animal can be trusted to hold the leash tied around your neck…which is exactly where we find ourselves – government unleashed with a domesticated populous.  You can no more blame government for their takeover than you can the dog for running wild.  We’ve failed in our responsibility as individuals.

Original Post: The Sentry Journal

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Women and Issues

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“In what new ways do you intend to rectify the inequalities in the work place, specifically regarding females making only 72% of what their male counterparts earned?”

The response from both candidates amounted to pathetic pandering and nothing about the future.  When asked about what NEW ways they would rectify the inequalities, Obama responded with something he did in the first month of his presidency.  Romney responded with his now infamous “binders full of women” response.

Now let’s consider that this was a foreign policy debate and that this 72% number is likely as substantiated as Donald Trumps hairline.  Attempt to do a good research on what the number actually is and you’re going to spin into a mess.  Interestingly, almost all of the places I found numbers showed that when Obama took office women made about 74-80% of what men make.  So much for that Ledbetter Act working out eh?

Specifics in debates are about as rare as soap in an Occupy crowd.  In fact, the candidates are trained not to give specifics if they can help it.  Even when they do give specific answers, they are usually lies or competing with fishing stories for the degree of embellishment.  There is a way to judge between the two on any given subject without looking at the specifics – it’s to look at the underlying content.  In other words, what message is the candidate trying to get across?

So let me wrap up the two longwinded answers for you.

Romney – I tried to hire women, I hired a bunch of women, I gave them flexible hours so that they could go home and take care of their families.

Obama – I signed a law, Romney didn’t, I am for abortion and free contraceptives, Romney is not.  (Oh, and you can get free mammograms at Planned Parenthood).

The left first went nuts with their faux anger over the “binders” comment because, after all, having such a binder is offensive…right?  After the meme nuts decided they had done enough to justify their existence in the world the left needed to show women that they were still angry – so they went back to his comments about giving women flexible hours.

“I recognized that if you’re going to have women in the workforce that sometimes you need to be more flexible.”

AHA!  Did you see it?  He said “if”!  This can only mean that he reluctantly accepts that some women get into the work place (unlike the slave of a wife he keeps at home) and therefore employers have to be flexible so that they can get home and do the job that God intended for them to have.   Women should be cooking, cleaning, taking care of children, and having large families.  After all, that is the Mormon stereotype the “always accepting” left is singing isn’t it?

I wonder, though, how many women who are in the work place wouldn’t appreciate this exact stance if it was their employer making it.  Most working women also tend to be mothers and most of them care about their children and families.  Heaven forbid we condone facilitating that part of their responsibilities!  Mitt’s statement didn’t negate the same sort of flexibility for men, but the implication will be forever made by rabid lefties.

There’s still a contrast to be made though – and that goes to Obama’s statement.  Why is it horrible to imply that many women in the work place also feel a great responsibility at home, but totally hip to imply that what women sex-crazed individuals who want to irresponsibly have sex and have others pay for their contraceptives?  Is this the big defining issue for women?

The great irony is that feminism spent decades attempting to redefine women as something more than just a portion of the human race that can reproduce.  I can agree with that much; that women aren’t just uteruses.  But democrats seem to think that’s all they are – people that have organs that we must control.  Even in an argument about equal pay the left still managed to steer it back to “girl parts”.

Perhaps the endometrium has become the new dermis of the democrats. For decades they have re-enslaved black men and women with free housing, food, and medical care for the steady harvest of votes.  What has it done for the black community?

The answer to both “women’s issues” and “racial issues” is simplistic; that all men are created equally.  No woman should make less, but no woman should be given more for simply being a woman.  No black man should be treated differently in any circumstance: positive or negative.  So Mitt shouldn’t have had binders and black people shouldn’t have appropriations.  We are brothers and sisters of the same Creator.

Original Post:  The Sentry Journal

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Redistribution of Poverty

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It’s really no surprise that President Obama supports the redistribution of wealth theory (especially considering his upbringing among socialist icons).  What’s fascinating is how much support he’s received from the left on this subject.  Last night to liberals on Bill O’Reilly’s show tried to argue that places like France are a great example of how redistribution can work well…You know, the France that is now attempting to force their rich from leaving so that they can tax them at their “fair share” (75%).  The democratic strategist argued that America’s tax system that was in place since the foundation of the nation is an example of great redistribution at work.  Of course, Bill in his finite wisdom didn’t even hit her on this.  Perhaps they both don’t know about the 16th Amendment.

America wasn’t founded on this principle of redistribution but on the notion that a free market and people know best how to grow money.  When government controls money the money becomes relatively stagnant.  There’s a misconception among redistributionists that also happens to be part of the sales pitch to the idea; that is that wealth is exchanged only monetarily.  Off of this idea you can build a case for class warfare; he has all of the money and you have so little.  But this isn’t true.

During the OWS movement there were outcries at big businesses because they “horde all of the money” and we remain deprived.  These individuals spent weeks protesting and posting their actions from the I-phones without realizing the lesson at their finger tips.  These individuals purchased these expensive phones (a phone that they would probably assert was too expensive or extortionist in nature from a big business like Apple). The fact is Apple charged what the consumer was willing to pay.  Consumers set the price for products unless you live in a place where government does (something that OWS and many leftists support).  When a consumer sets the price for production then something strange happens during the exchange of goods – both sides get wealthy.  The business gets a monetary profit and you get something that makes your life better.

Let’s consider.  Who is wealthier; the guy who has a mansion, a Land Rover, a pool, a giant 60” big screen, and a boat but only has $10k in the bank or a guy who lives in a hut with $500,000 in the bank?  It’s all about perspective.  The point is that products also grow your wealth because they are markers of wealth.  America is one of the richest and poorest nations in the world.  We have individuals who are literally worth nothing because they are so in debt, but most of those individuals who are deeply in debt have a car, air conditioning, a home with a kitchen, microwave, oven, etc.  Who is wealthier then?  The person who has all of these niceties but is in debt or the man in India who has money but access to none of these luxuries?

History has taught us well (and continues to teach us) that wealth redistribution doesn’t work.  Not only does it not work, it is criminal in how bad the outcomes are.  Soviet Russia attempted to redistribute its wealth and as many people died as did in concentration camps during WWII.  Greece is the most recent victim.  Thomas Sowell talked this week about the failure of Castro’s redistribution process and how his wealthy now live in Florida making us wealthier.  We become wealthier due to their human capital.  Sowell defines it this way:

When successful people with much human capital leave the country, either voluntarily or because of hostile governments or hostile mobs whipped up by demagogues exploiting envy, lasting damage can be done to the economy they leave behind.”

The reality is that you cannot redistribute wealth on a large scale.  Reason.tv already showed last year that if you took every penny from every millionaire in America you couldn’t even run the government half a year.  What happens is as Margret Thatcher projected, “eventually you run out of other people’s money”.  At that point you begin to redistribute poverty.  Is this the America you want?  Apparently it’s the one our President wants.

Original Post:  The Sentry Journal

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My Opponent Hates Black People

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Democrats have a long and proud history of defending Civil Rights and expanding opportunity for all Americans. From the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act in 2009, Democrats have fought to end discrimination in all forms—including discrimination based on race, sex, ethnicity or national origin, language, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, or disability.”

So says the DNC website – which sounds great…except it’s frustratingly untrue.  The democrats have successfully rewritten history numerous times regarding race both in the positive light on the democratic side and the negative gloom of the republican side.  The fact is that the very Civil Rights Act of 1964 was filibustered for 83 days by prominent Democrats such as Albert Gore Sr., and Robert Byrd.  Conveniently that isn’t mentioned on the DNC website.  Nor is it mentioned that it was democrats who championed the “separate but equal” Jim Crow laws and Black Codes that dominated the south for decades.

Of course the argument against this is that the parties have changed.  Democrats are no longer the “dixiecrats”, remnants of the old Confederacy, and Republicans are no longer the party in the league of Lincoln.  There was a great split in the Democratic Party during the 60’s over race, no doubt, and I wouldn’t argue that any of the prominent democrats of today are racists.  But the implication of the DNC’s website, along with a history of rhetoric on the subject, is that they are the party who has fought racism while the GOP has been the party of racists.  That rhetoric has been vamped up for the election season.

“They’re going to put ya’ll back in chains!” said Joe Biden to a predominantly black crowd.

Chris Matthews accused GOP members of being racist for mentioning Chicago because a lot of blacks live in Chicago.  He also accused the RNC chairman of using the race card by pointing out that the work requirement for welfare is being changed by the Obama administration.  The Nation sports a piece called “The GOP’s Blatant Racism” – which is little more than cutting out lines about increasing the manufacturing sector so that blacks can get jobs rather than government handouts and calling that a racist stance.  The Daily Kos takes Boehner’s quote, “This election is about economics… These groups have been hit the hardest.  They may not show up and vote for our candidate but I’d suggest to you they won’t show up and vote for the president either” and turns it into this headline “GOP Racism: Boehner Says Out Loud He HopesBlacks and Latinos ‘Won’t Vote at All This Election”. (emphasis mine)  That’s some creative use of the quotation mark!

Liberal website The Slate has a piece titled “Dangers of an all-white GOP”, HuffPo has “Why are GOP Contenders Reviving Racist Rhetoric?”, AlterNet posted, “The 10 Most Racist Moments of the GOP Primary (So Far)”.  Republican racism is an assumed truth that must be rooted in a long dark history.  That’s the stance from The Root, a liberal website that is quick to set its sights on anything that might be twisted into racism if it comes from the right.  They were the ones who started the rumor that Michelle Bachmann thought that black people were better off during slavery – an obvious misrepresentation of her quote, “Slavery had a disastrous impact on African-American families, yet sadly a child born into slavery in 1860 was more likely to be raised by his mother and father in a two-parent household than was an African-American baby born after the election of the USA’s first African-American President.”

Of course when Joe Biden made his “back in chains” remark, The Root was quick to write it off saying, “News Flash: It is not always the worst thing in the world to mention race or America’s racial history, in metaphor or otherwise.  Context matters.  Intentions matter.”  An exoneration that is obviously only available for democrats.  What exactly was the righteous context of Biden’s “I like to talk to you about your credit card” in an Indian accent or his “can’t go into a 7-eleven without seeing an Indian-American” gaffes?  Oh, that’s just Joe being Joe!  Intentions indeed.

Well then let’s look at intentions and context. 

The KKK, easily the most notable racist organization in American history was “a military force serving the interests of the Democratic Party, a planter class, and all those who desired the restoration of white supremacy.  Its purposes were political in the broadest sense, for it sought to affect power relations, both public and private, throughout Southern society.  It aimed to destroy the Republican Party’s infrastructure, undermine the Reconstruction state, re-establish control of the black labor force and restore racial subordination in every aspect of Southern Life.” – A Short History of Reconstruction by Eric Foner. 

Historically, since the time of Lincoln, black people voted for Republicans all the way up to 1932 when FDR got 71% of the black vote.  Strange since FDR and Woodrow Wilson were faithful Jim Crow supporters.  Wilson moved blacks into their own buildings and, if they had to work in the same federal buildings, partitioned them from the white workers.  FDR refused to integrate the military (the Republican platform in 1940) and FDR wouldn’t support a federal anti-lynch law. 

Roosevelt invited the 1936 Olympians to meet him at the White House – all but the black athletes such as Jesse Owens (who won 4 gold medals).  Owens would later say, “Hitler didn’t snub me, it was [FDR] who snubbed me.  The president didn’t even send me a telegram.” (Triumph by Jeremy Schapp).  This is also the guy who round up more than 100,000 Japanese-American family members and threw them into concentration camps and who has been criticized for years for not acting decisively to prevent or stop the Holocaust, ever mentioning it in one of his 998 press conferences, or accepting any Jewish refugees into the nation.  The demi-god of the Democratic Party sent away ships full of European Jewish refugees but modern republicans are racist because they want people to enter the country legally.

Perhaps the most criminal acts against blacks by FDR came from The New Deal.  Rich white states received more of the New Deal Dollars than black states.  Blacks were hit hardest because most of their jobs were cut by the NLRA (National Labor Relations Act, part of the New Deal that was later declared unconstitutional) which set minimum wage codes.  The south industrialists had been undercutting the north for years due to the affordability of the black workers. Of course, the northern unions supported the minimum wage increase because it took away that undercut from the South.  When employers were forced to meet the new minimum wage standards they had to let go of unskilled positions – which usually meant black workers (due to both racism and economics).  30,000 to 50,000 black workers lost their jobs in less than 6 months. 

Why did blacks support Roosevelt then?  Because even though the New Deal ultimately hurt black Americans, it also established the only relief to be found.  In the aftermath of The Great Depression there was little work to be had and hiring a black man wasn’t high on the agenda with so many white men looking for work.  The unfortunate reality is that too many black families became unofficial dependents of the state.  The jobs they once had didn’t exist anymore and if any did, it was taken by a white man.  Who then do you turn to?  Of course, there are other factors to be sure.  FDR was an astute politician and knew how to use his power and appeal wisely.  Still, the democratic wheel of dependency was starting to turn.

The democrats only received a small majority of the vote for years after Roosevelt.  Nixon received 32% of the black vote as late as 1960 in his loss to JFK.  Lyndon B. Johnson would be the first democratic president to get more than 90% of the vote (94%), a trend that continues above 80% to this day.  Johnson’s appeal was that he signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964. 

Malcom X was right, however, in his “The Ballot or the Bullet” speech– President Johnson and the Democrats didn’t seem to care about Civil Rights until that election season.  After all, it was democrats who strongly opposed it.  Johnson also voted against legislation to stop lynching and poll taxes (Harry McPHerson, A Political Education).  As the Senate Majority Leader in 1956 he was one of only a few senators to not sign the Southern Manifesto; a high-profile act that began to establish his credential with national blacks.  The strong contrast came when Barry Goldwater (the republican candidate who ran against Johnson) came out against the Civil Rights Act, not because he opposed Civil Rights but because he opposed sections he deemed unconstitutional in the Act itself.  Watch his response here. 

Goldwater had previously supported Civil Rights Acts that were shot down by democrats.  More to the point, perhaps, was that this bill aimed to force morality by the state’s power; something Goldwater was completely against.  “Our aim, as I understand it, is neither to establish a segregated society nor to establish an integrated society…It is to preserve a free society.”  Unfortunately, his stance against the 1964 Civil Rights Act attracted racists who detested and feared black people, not the state power he abhorred.

Initially the Johnson campaign thought that they would lose the election because of the popular notion of the “Southern Strategy” or devolved “white backlash”; that is, that Goldwater would become a hero for racists and steal votes from the traditional democratic powerhouses.  Already the majority of his party members in Congress were running on anti-Civil Rights Act platforms, and yet Johnson was holding firm to him (to his credit).  In fact, he looked like he might lose his primary bid to “segregation today, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever!” George Wallace – democratic governor of Alabama.

Goldwater’s stance on race was that laws do not settle racism, but that we must “find it in our hearts to love one another”.  The Goldwater posture against meeting racial quotas in schools, and the work place were popular initially, but the Johnson campaign twisted it into racist rhetoric – which was easily done since so many racists from the “white backlash” were becoming unofficial spokesmen for the Goldwater campaign.  The same GOP members that had just passed the 1964 CRA were now being thrown under the bus as bigots by the Johnson campaign.  In the end, Johnson would win all but the Deep South in a sweeping victory.

Politically those roots would stick with the GOP in spite of Wallace sweeping the south as an independent in 1968 against Nixon and Humphrey.  It was the GOP now that was considered the anti-CRA party and the redundant rhetoric would make it true in spite of history and the facts.

The reason I write all of this is because there is so much said that is untrue about what is unknown regarding the history of race relations in America.  The right constantly has to defend itself against the long standing false accusations of a xenophobic past while the democrats get to claim that they’re no longer the prejudiced party of yesteryear.  Why does it stand for one party and not the other?  Why can one party write off accusations because they’ve had a black president while the other is considered patronizing for having more black appointees in cabinet positions?

Racism should be dead and gone because it has no modern context in America.  It was alive and well in the 1800’s due to slavery, it was alive and well in the 30’s due to Jim Crow laws, it was alive and well in the 60’s due to the civil rights era.  Goldwater’s fear was that political and legislative enforcement of racial reform would take the issue out of the hearts of the people and put into the hands of politicians to be used for their purposes.  Today, on a large scale, we have to look back in order to conjure up macro forms of racism.  Nobody could run on a racist ticket today and survive – a known fact that politicians take advantage of.  Therefore my politician enemy is a racist. 

Original Post:  The Sentry Journal

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Letter to Mr. Establishment

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Dear Mr. Establishment,

For too long we have been dancing out of step.  For years you have stared into our eyes and told us what we wanted to hear, but then unapologetically stepped on our toes and took inappropriate advances.  You’re drunk, clumsy, arrogant and jealous.  If we ever dared look for a different dance partner – someone who knew our style, who could keep up and respect us, you would just bully him out of the dance hall.

Well, there’s a new tune playing and our toes will take no more abuse.  You, like most high school jocks, have become fat, lazy, and impotent.  You continues to revel in the memory of who you were and expect us to adore you in the same way today as we did then.  The problem is that nobody cares now about what you did in the 4th quarter in 1982.  What have you done for us lately?

I’ll tell you what you’ve done – you’ve flirted with Ms. Liberal.  You’re constantly staring and you’re dallying around the punch bowl hoping to get her a drink.  When we talk to you, you don’t listen but give empty responses while gazing at her from afar.  You long to be on her side of the room and try to lead the dance in that direction.  She draws you in over and over with her cheap tricks only to abandon you in embarrassment.  Still, you’re fascinated by the vixen and return knowing you can always come back to us.

Well, the gig is over.  There’s a new guy in town who knows how to treat us and knows how to follow through.  He won’t abandon, but will stand firm by our side.  He knows how to lead and knows all of the best dances.  He doesn’t care about Ms. Liberal and thinks she looks trashy in that cheap dress and no bra.  Want to take this dance?  Want to try and butt in?  I think you’re in for a surprise fight that you can’t handle.

Mr. Tea is our guy now.  We’re not going to be fooled by your hollow wooing any longer.  You’re been wandering around the center of the dance hall trying to get everyone to like you, but now you’re just alone with no friends and no date.  It’s sad really because you had potential and we gave you so many chances.  We can still be friendly, but we can’t be friends.  You’ve been too far gone for far too long.  Did I mention Mr. Tea has a motorcycle?  The town doesn’t know quite what to think of him yet – but they’ll come around.

Sincerely, Ms. Right

Original Post:  The Sentry Journal

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Your Character Matters, Not Mine

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After reading this week’s Michael Tomasky piece in The Daily Beast titled “The Media’s Foolish Elizabeth Warren Witch Hunt”, I couldn’t help but take note in the hypocrisy he has displayed.  By now, everyone knows about Elizabeth Warren’s embarrassing claims of Chrokee relations and, to Tomasky’s credit, few consider it as a real issue.  Michael has gone so far as to tell us that we shouldn’t care; mostly because …nobody cares.

Mr. Tomasky goes on to compare the “witch hunt” to that of  during the Lewinsky scandal.  The comparison is simple again – nobody should have cared because nobody cared.  It seems that the media guidelines for “story worthy” come down to whether or not people care.  Of course, I care and (by his own numbers) at least 30% of the voters do care about Cherokeegate and did care about Lewinskygate.  So at what point is it okay to publish?  When 50% of the people care?

This entire piece is nothing but an attempt to exempt liberals from character issue.  Of course, that issue is met head on by Mr. Tomasky.

 It’s a “character” issue? Oh please. Elizabeth Warren’s character is pretty well established. She was the daughter of an Oklahoma janitor, for God’s sakes, who started working as a pre-teenager when her father had a heart attack. She has children and grandchildren and has taught Sunday school. She’s served on a number of prestigious boards. She got her law degree from Rutgers—a very good school, but the outpost of someone cratching her way up the mountain on her own, without legacy or connections…She chaired congressional oversight of TARP.

He goes on to point out that she became a professor of law at Harvard too.  Is this how the left defines character?  Having children who have children?  Having your father die (who was a janitor no less!)?  Starting work as a pre-teen (I thought the left hated child labor)?  Did he really just bring up TARP oversight?  Serving on prestigious boards and getting a law degree from Rutgers (a very good school)?

That basically defines most members of Congress – so apparently she’s well equipped for the job, but Congressional members aren’t the model of good character.  Having big degrees from big universities is hardly evidence of character.  Ted Kaczynski graduated from Harvard and taught at Berkeley.  Even the evil George W. Bush earned degrees from Yale and Harvard.

Of course, no such fancy language can be found in Mr. Tomasky’s pieces on Christine O’Donnell – one of which he mockingly refers to her as American’s “first witch”.  He didn’t give Herman Cain the praise for working hard the same way he did Mrs. Warren (“All those burgers hawked, all those manly pizzas peddled, all those millions banked; and yet, at the one moment in his life when he needed discipline the most, the CEO of Self crumpled”).  It seems character mattered quite a bit when he wrote “Newt Gingrich, moral leader” for the Guardian.

I actually tend to agree with Tomasky on one point – character does matter with Gingrich, O’Donnell, and Cain.  If they had character issues and displayed immoral patterns, then that is fair game.  However, you cannot take the stones from one sinner and throw them at another.  This is exactly what Mr. Tomasky was accusing Gingrich of doing with Clinton, and yet finds himself doing the same here.  Hypocrisy at its finest.

Original Post:  The Sentry Journal

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Content with Caligula’s Coin

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It is the nature of man to try and get as much as he can in reward for as little effort as possible.  This same drive, practiced in two separate ways, can define two distinctly different people.  On one hand, the desire to get much for little can spur a responsible fiscal business person to stay ahead of his competitors in a capitalist market place.  One the other hand, it can push one to the street with open but idle hands.

Politicians know the power behind these two distinct groups.  The former is courted for the power of their money and influence; the latter, for the power of their numbers and open schedule.  Few will make it very far in politics without one of these groups supporting you.  Wooing both would be ideal, but they are counter weights on the scale of partisan power.  You must choose a side, abandon both, or fool both of them into think you are their official.

Caligula wasn’t a fan of his predecessor Tiberius (few were) in Rome.  When Tiberius died (likely helped along by the hand of Caligula), he began to reverse the policies and practices of Tiberius.  As disgusting a human as Tiberius was, he was fairly successful as emperor and secured a very substantial treasury.  Having this monetary security, Tiberius began to pursue the former of that second group – the commoner (That is not to say that commoners are all lazy public leeches – most are hard-working self-sufficient individuals.  I am simply using the term out of convenience.).

Caligula was known to throw money out to the people for weeks at a time.  He would use the treasury to assist people who had lost their homes in disasters, build giant public buildings for games and events, and throw extravagant banquets to celebrate his reign.  That isn’t to say that he was a commoner himself.  He used those same funds to build two of the largest vessels and most extravagant party barges in the world, and threw them in Lake Nemi for his pleasure.  He built a temporary bridge with pontoons across the Bay of Baiae just to flaunt himself (and to defy a soothsayer).

His generosity with the empires money, however, made him a hero among the masses.  His policies began to center around gaining their support.  He increased the pay of the empire’s employees, instituted democratic voting (thumbing the face of the republic), and threw a lot of money into public gestures.  Philo tells us that he had thrown the entire front row (which is where the wealthy Romans sat) into the arena to be killed by the animals – much to the pleasure of the poorer individuals.

It is no surprise that his money ran out.  The public hero lost his luster when famine hit the empire could no longer throw money from the balconies.  In his first year Caligula wasted the entire treasury that Tiberius had saved up during his reign.  This forced Caligula to wage war on the wealthy Romans.  He seized their property, rewrote their wills in order to make him the beneficiary, he raised taxes, forced others to give him loans, and openly rob travelers.  Still, he couldn’t escape the financial crisis.  It took a short reign (Claudius was assassinated) and many good works by the Senate and Claudius to restore Rome to some extent.

Our current circumstances aren’t much different than that of Rome’s during the time of Caligula.  We have a President (among other politicians on both sides) who live lavish lifestyles on the public dime, but stay in power by persuading the poor that they are their advocates.  This is why they have supported the “Occupy Movement”, the stimulus packages, the health care bill, increases in minimum wage, increases in public assistance, and expansions of public services.  This is why they have attacked the wealthy, blamed them for the nation’s struggles, and seized more and more of your/their wealth.  They are desperate for their power and know how to keep it, but their end is demise.  If you are fool enough to follow the nonsensical, and dense enough to support the senseless, then you will follow their corruption to its ultimate failure.

History is trying to teach us a lesson.  You can either open your ears and adjust, or ignorantly praise your leader with an empty stomach while you feed Incitatus his golden oats.

Original Post:  The Sentry Journal

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Obama’s Inferno

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Growing up in Northwest Montana, many of my friends worked for the Forest Service during the summer months to either remove old dead growth or to fight forest fires. If there weren’t any fires to fight (there usually were), they would remove the old growth because that stuff just sits in the forest, dries out, and waits for a spark.  It all amounts to fuel waiting for a flame.

The frustrating part was that environmental lefties from places like New Jersey were constantly fighting the Montana citizens in their efforts to remove the old growth. The people of Montana saw the threat that it posed to their community, but  the environmentalist saw it as part of nature that shouldn’t be disturbed.  That is, until the forest fire came and burned down thousands of acres – then the environmentalists would use the fire to their advantage in pushing their agenda (“We shouldn’t be living in those forests anyway”).

Now, consider today’s racial environment (in the midst of this post-racial administration).  The left has continuously fought to keep racial warfare alive in order that they can use it to their advantage…They keep the kindling well stocked, and when the time is opportune, they provide the spark.  The left constantly reminds black Americans about the racism that is still very real, very abrasive, and very damaging to their lifestyle.  Their canon proclaims racism as that which takes the crutch of the left away from those who are unable to stand without it.  In other words, black people can’t survive without the support of the left – and anyone who disagrees with that is racist.

This stance, of course, escapes reason. The left has become to black America a new kind of master – one that, when absolute liberty becomes available, replaces the metal shackles on its servants with the mental shackles of fear and uncertainty.   Many have fallen victim to the same outcome as the freedmen after the Confiscation Act of 1862 – as dependent on the Federal government as they had been their masters prior to their new found “freedom”.  They’ve run to open arms that are just as willing to use them for their purposes.

Well, their work is now being called upon. All those years of built up resentment toward an entity that doesn’t exist; a theoretical racist white man who takes on the form of politicians, cops, and power that want nothing more than to take from the black man and abuse him.   It all sits, idle, waiting for an opportune spark.  The left saw their Health Care bill crashing, their numbers shrinking, their voices failing and needed something…a flicker of hope, an ember of strength, an ignition.

A boy is dead, a terrible and unfortunate outcome to an event that we know very little about – but a potential spark to light the left’s old growth.  Now fan the flames and watch it spread out of control, without reason, absent of consideration, and raging with violence and ferocity.  Witness its damages, note its destruction, examine its chaos, discern the pain it brings while it burns bright and let all other matters of concern slip away.

Original Post:  The Sentry Journal

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Re-Redefining Conservatism

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Remember when Bush came into office with his “compassionate conservative” slogan?  Remember how that translated?  Compassionate conservatism was Bush’s way of saying, “Hey, I’m for capitalism, but only up to a certain point, then I’m for socialism”.  In politics, this is a “playing the whole field” approach.  It appeases moderates who want to hear milquetoast language, liberals who want the social net, and conservatives who aren’t paying attention (hey, conservatism is in the name, it must be good).

Now Romney, who plays center field with the range of Willie Mays, ran into a criticism after he said that he “didn’t care about the poor”. I know, it’s an unfair media-biased statement taken out of context (he also said he didn’t care about the rich, but that’s not reported) but the political reality is that the media has defined this as heartless.  In order to hedge his losses, Romney has turned to Bush’s “Compassionate Conservative” approach with a statement that supports raising minimum wage.

Now supporting a minimum wage increase is stupid.  It doesn’t help the poor; it hurts them. This is why I have a problem with the whole premise of “Compassionate Conservatism”.  Conservatism is the most compassionate form of government ideas we have.  By simply forcing employers to pay a higher wage for their lowest paying jobs many have to either take a loss or hire less.

I’ve been on the losing end of a minimum wage increase.  I worked for a construction company managing their in-house tool rental site for contractors.  There were a lot of minimum wage “hands” that were used by this company for various jobs.  In my area, the minimum wage workers cleaned up used tools, kept the area swept, put away returned tools, scaffolding, and various odds and ends.  When the minimum wage increased a few of these hands were let go and I was forced to do their job on top of my own.  I lost (more work for the same pay), and they lost (no work for no pay).

Conservatism’s compassion comes with the rules of capitalism.  Most workers who make minimum wage are unskilled, young, and just starting to get into the work place.  If you’re unskilled, then you start at minimum wage to learn a skill.  If you work hard then you can convince your employer that it is more cost effective to keep you than it is to retrain someone else.  If that doesn’t get you a wage increase, then you move to a business who wants your skill set or you try learning a more desirable skill set at a starting wage again.  The point is that YOU have more control over your wage.

Liberalism says that government is best equipped to enforce wages.  It doesn’t trust YOU to make the proper decisions or apply the proper work ethic to achieve higher earnings.  Therefore, they have to come in every few years and change the bottom line for employers.  Thing is, when government is constantly telling employers how much they HAVE to pay their lowest wage earners, then the employer is less likely to listen to their workers who ask for increased wages.  Why would you increase the wages if the government is just going to raise it in a year or two anyway?   Negotiation has been done away with along with any effort to self promote.

All of this breeds a community of workers that expect much for little effort. You can find a whole community of them “occupying” various parks and sidewalks in most cities.  A few years ago you could find these same mind-set communities being organized by a man who now lives in a white mansion.  Apparently Mitt heard about that and thought he would try that same approach.  The problem is, the people he’s now pandering to aren’t going to vote for him anyway.  Watching someone sell out is bad enough, but to sell out for free…That’s just not the sign of a good businessman.

We cannot let conservatism be hijacked by these liberals masquerading as true believers.  It is important that we continue to stand up against liberalism, even when it is called conservatism.  Of course, in order to do that, you must be able to tell the two apart.

Original Post: The Sentry Journal

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Shame On Us!

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- A somewhat unserious candidate who used a pizza sales slogan as his tax plan slogan.
- A man who was resigned from office in shame.
- A senator whose last election set a record among Republicans for the worst incumbent defeat ever.
- A Texas governor who was best at beating himself in debates.
- A House member who couldn’t even get support from her state’s republican governor.
- A Republican governor who couldn’t get the support from his state’s most popular congressional member.

- A governor best known for accepting a job in the Obama administration.
- A governor who defined his political career with a social health care bill.
- A man who fits into today’s political arena about as well as he fits into his suits.

That’s what you’ve got, in a nutshell.  Take your pick.  This is what you’ve been given to choose from.  This is what sucks about politics – the best candidates don’t always run and the only people who will win are people who run.

There are a lot of people who are more popular than Newt Gingrich, for instance, that decided not to run for office. There are plenty of successful businessmen who are more conservative than Mitt Romney.  There is a certain ex-governor who can draw crowds larger than all of the current candidates combined.  All of those people decided not to run and now…

Originally I was going to write this post on the possibility of a brokered convention, talk about the last time we had such a convention, and then discuss the possibilities within the conservative movement – but then Newt sucked it up in Florida and now Mitt seems more inevitable than ever.  The next 11 states are as follows.

- Nevada (won by Mitt in 2008)
- Maine (won by Mitt in 2008)
- Colorado, Minnesota (won by Mitt in 2008), and Missouri (he didn’t win!)
- Arizona (which naturally went to McCain) and Michigan (Mitt’s daddy’s state and won he won)

If Florida is a bump, then the next few states are the set for Mitt’s spike. Mitt is leading by almost 20 points in the Florida polls on.  So how many of you are willing to jump behind a Romney candidacy?

The GOP hasn’t only failed in producing a quality candidate; they’ve failed in making the case against Obama in spite of his amazing list of economic failures and one of the largest grass roots movements in history allying with the GOP in the fight against him.  Of course, it is hard to convince a nation of ignorant people.  Look at these disturbing polls.

The President’s approval rating is SOMEHOW even at 46% to a 46% disapproval. Only 26% of the people feel that the country is moving in the right direction though…which begs the question “WHAT?!” The President had 2 years to pass almost anything he wanted with a super majority in both houses, told the nation that he would spend trillions to fix our economy, promised to keep our unemployment low with heavy dose of Keynesian economics and yet the President gets a pass by 20% of these people.

Still, 46% isn’t great and even Romney would be an improvement but Obama is polling around 5% higher than Romney in the latest polls.  This means that people know that we’re failing as a nation, but think that the President is shooting par for the course.  They also think that the republicans don’t have anyone who can do any better (which may be true).

Perhaps we should double down.  Perhaps we should give this nation what it wants.  We, the conservatives, certainly aren’t getting what we want or what the country needs.  In 1978, the Republicans watched Reagan lose to Ford and then saw the repercussions of that loss in Carter’s four years.  Thing is, Reagan didn’t want to run for President – but did.  Know why?  Because the people demanded it.

In 1978, the American Conservative Union pushed Reagan to run against the establishment supported and Presidential incumbent Gerald Ford.   The establishment supported the wrong guy (the moderate), told us that a conservative like Reagan could never win in the general election, and went on to fail in the race against Carter anyway.  The establishment strikes again in 2012 but…No Reagans.

Shame on the conservatives who sat on the sidelines instead of running.  Shame on the citizens for not demanding better.

Original Post:  The Sentry Journal

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The Kentucky Contrast & Mr. Thomas Massie

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Earlier this week, Kentucky Senator Rand Paul presented a giant check to the U.S. Treasury for $500,000; about 16% of his office’s budget that wasn’t spent and therefore returned. It was a bright day in Kentucky, not just because tax payers saw their money being spent more frugally than previous office holders, but because we saw a politician putting his money (in giant check form) where his mouth is – a rarity in politics.

While the fiscal hawks of the state were still beaming about this happening, another story broke about $500,000 – from a republican of a different breed. Former Ag Commissioner Richie Farmer (previous GOP hopeful) was audited by the new Ag Commissioner, Republican James Comer.  I should say that he lead a review on the Agriculture Department and found that his predecessor had done a little fluffing his money. The findings were sad and astonishing; nearly $500,000 in equipment was missing from the Agriculture Department.

This isn’t the first time that Comer had to air out the dirty laundry left behind by Farmer.  On his first day in office, Comer fired 16 non-merit employees to include Farmer’s girlfriend who was only hired in the final days of his failed campaign as the running mate in Kentucky’s gubernatorial race.  The guy who seemed to be heading nowhere but up has suddenly fallen back down to earth.  We are left with disappointment.

The contrast of these two half-million dollar stories couldn’t be more defined.  The problem is that this isn’t a secluded event, but a typical story in modern politics.  We have an establishment guy who uses the position the voters entrusted to him irresponsibly and spends our money flippantly.  On the other hand, we have a politician who practices what he preaches; fiscal responsibility.

Rand Paul has character and he doesn’t simply use the phrases “limited government” and “responsible government” to get attention – he believes in them. This disposition reminds me of a small town guy named Thomas Massie.  I had the privilege of listening to Mr. Massie speak at a Tea Party rally last year, and I was supremely impressed.  He reluctantly ran for the office of County Judge Executive in Lewis County here in Kentucky and surprised many by winning.  He’s a small town guy that just happens to have an M.S. inMechanical Engineering at MIT (no big deal).

It wasn’t his degree or his charisma that won me over (those are just icing), but it was all the ways he found to save his county money in the first few months he was in office.  He had vowed to save the tax payers enough money to pay for his salary – and he did.  Not only did he do it, he took initiatives beyond expectations.  He traced down electric lines that the county was being billed for that didn’t actually have electricity running to it.  He found land that they were paying rent on that wasn’t even owned by the people charging rent (Who knows how long they paid that bill?  He got a refund.).  When he got into office and they gave him the giant stack of bills to pay, he simply set them aside and waited for the collectors to justify their charges.  Phones lines to nowhere, over paid contractors, waste abroad; it all came to a halt with Massie at the helm.

Now, I’m pleased to say, Mr. Massie is running for Congress (Kentucky’s 4th Congressional District). It should come as no surprise that he was encouraged to do so by none other than Sen. Rand Paul.  If you want to continue seeing this kind of contrast in Congress, I recommend heading over to Thomas Massey’swebsite and giving your support – I know I will.

http://www.thomasmassie.com/

Original Post:  The Sentry Journal

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Keeping the Ignorant Feeling Informed

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“There’s nothing I like less than bad arguments for a view that I hold dear” – Daniel Dennett

A good friend of mine, one whom I never enjoy being on the opposite end of an argument with, explained to me that in order to properly argue for a belief that you hold true, you should not only want to present good arguments, but deny bad arguments.  It seems simple enough, but in practice we consistently fail – especially in politics.

Politics has become a cesspool for talking points and half truth rhetoric.  Few actually know the principles or intricacies behind the topic they are defending or promoting.  Interestingly, it seems we all know that both sides are guilty of this because we constantly point out the flaw across the aisle.  Talking points are prominent in politics for, as I see it, two basic reasons.  First, because they are easily recited by even the most ignorant of supporters and second, they give just enough information for an individual to feel as if they are learned in regard to the given subject.

There’s an advancement in talking points that seems to be prominent among the left (though honestly, it can be found on both sides) that deals with the problem of not being able to argue with intellectual honesty.  Allow me to explain with a recent encounter.

In the not too distant past I got in a little discussion on a college campus with some kids who were supporting a certain democratic politician. I attempted to keep it civil and simply asked them some probing questions about the issues.  While I presented my point regarding the new laws in our state surrounding methamphetamines, this individual wrote my entire premise off with one interrupting rhetorical statement, “I bet you support Sarah Palin too”.  With that one line, that irrelevant half-accusation, I was doomed in the hallway besieged with collegiate brilliance! My answer didn’t matter, the accusation had been made and I had to either deter from the point and defend that charge or denounce Palin to remain credible – either way, he defused my argument regarding methamphetamines with a parry from the sword of mockery.

Being mocked by the ignorant is frustrating.  For me, I stood in wonder as to how this individual who knows so little was bold enough to taunt me under the misguided belief that he knows so much.  In that thought process it hit me; he has been a successfully converted instrument of the left.  You see, it is easier to convince people of what they want to believe rather than teach them what they need to know.  In the case of this individual, and many others, it was easier for him to be convinced that he was knowledgeable (something he wanted to believe) rather than teach him actual knowledge.

Years ago I made a simple argument with my office’s outspoken liberal about limited government. When I told him that the Tenth Amendment said that all powers not specifically given to the federal government by our constitution are reserved to the states and the people, he scoffed at me for my ignorance.  “The states are bigger than the federal government”, he puffed with a contemptuous voice.  For a brief moment his boorish mockery won the audience – until I pulled out my pocket constitution.

Prior to pulling my trump card, he had convinced everyone I was the dumb character he was imitating. The liberal knows that the federal government trumps everything, just like they know that Bush and Palin are stupid, that Tea Party protesters are racist, and that conservatives are greedy people who hate the poor.  These non-factoids have become, in the minds of liberals, non-fiction.  They have their truth; try opposing it, and you’ll be met with the refined and most effective weapon the left has – mockery.

The left has made a business out of mockery; it is nearly everywhere. It is no longer left to the comedians or talk show hosts, but is consistently used in “real political commentary” by the likes of Rachel Maddow andKeith Olbermann.  The comedians use it as a tool for the supremely foolish such as in Jon Stewart’s “The Daily Show”, and then the Bill Mahers of the world try to play both parts of the field when it suits them best. All of this has become a source to puff up those who lack understanding and followers continuously imitate these wind bags in the process of debate.  The masses receive their truth in sound bites and make a joke out of legitimate arguments in spite of their substance.  Try making a drinking game for every time Rachel Maddow rolls her eyes, or shakes her head in dismissal at a republicanor explains their positions with the hint of laughter in her voice and you’ll be as drunk as a lord.

Now, I love mockery as much as the next guy, especially if done with a thick British accent regarding a monarch. Mockery, in its most sincere form, is a derision of another’s foolery.  Dana Carvey’s President Bush is still my preferred way to order Moo Shu Chicken.  Steven Crowder and Greg Gutfeld send a thrill up my leg!  I can even appreciate Jon Stewart and Steven Colbert because the guys are funny.  There is a problem, however, when a charade becomes the foundation of certainty – and that is the problem today.  Too many plant their seeds of understanding in the bedrock of farce and give little charity to the arguments presented from their opposition.

Again, it is not just the left who fall victim to this pitfall.  As my opening quote reveals, we cannot allow bad arguments to be present in our struggle for liberty and limited government.  If we do, we leave open the door to mockery.  We must battle those bad arguments within with just as much fervor as we battle the ones made against us.

Original Post:  The Sentry Journal

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Keeping the Ignorant Feeling Informed

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“There’s nothing I like less than bad arguments for a view that I hold dear” – Daniel Dennett

A good friend of mine, one whom I never enjoy being on the opposite end of an argument with, explained to me that in order to properly argue for a belief that you hold true, you should not only want to present good arguments, but deny bad arguments.  It seems simple enough, but in practice we consistently fail – especially in politics.

Politics has become a cesspool for talking points and half truth rhetoric.  Few actually know the principles or intricacies behind the topic they are defending or promoting.  Interestingly, it seems we all know that both sides are guilty of this because we constantly point out the flaw across the aisle.  Talking points are prominent in politics for, as I see it, two basic reasons.  First, because they are easily recited by even the most ignorant of supporters and second, they give just enough information for an individual to feel as if they are learned in regard to the given subject.

There’s an advancement in talking points that seems to be prominent among the left (though honestly, it can be found on both sides) that deals with the problem of not being able to argue with intellectual honesty.  Allow me to explain with a recent encounter.

In the not too distant past I got in a little discussion on a college campus with some kids who were supporting a certain democratic politician. I attempted to keep it civil and simply asked them some probing questions about the issues.  While I presented my point regarding the new laws in our state surrounding methamphetamines, this individual wrote my entire premise off with one interrupting rhetorical statement, “I bet you support Sarah Palin too”.  With that one line, that irrelevant half-accusation, I was doomed in the hallway besieged with collegiate brilliance! My answer didn’t matter, the accusation had been made and I had to either deter from the point and defend that charge or denounce Palin to remain credible – either way, he defused my argument regarding methamphetamines with a parry from the sword of mockery.

Being mocked by the ignorant is frustrating.  For me, I stood in wonder as to how this individual who knows so little was bold enough to taunt me under the misguided belief that he knows so much.  In that thought process it hit me; he has been a successfully converted instrument of the left.  You see, it is easier to convince people of what they want to believe rather than teach them what they need to know.  In the case of this individual, and many others, it was easier for him to be convinced that he was knowledgeable (something he wanted to believe) rather than teach him actual knowledge.

Years ago I made a simple argument with my office’s outspoken liberal about limited government. When I told him that the Tenth Amendment said that all powers not specifically given to the federal government by our constitution are reserved to the states and the people, he scoffed at me for my ignorance.  “The states are bigger than the federal government”, he puffed with a contemptuous voice.  For a brief moment his boorish mockery won the audience – until I pulled out my pocket constitution.

Prior to pulling my trump card, he had convinced everyone I was the dumb character he was imitating. The liberal knows that the federal government trumps everything, just like they know that Bush and Palin are stupid, that Tea Party protesters are racist, and that conservatives are greedy people who hate the poor.  These non-factoids have become, in the minds of liberals, non-fiction.  They have their truth; try opposing it, and you’ll be met with the refined and most effective weapon the left has – mockery.

The left has made a business out of mockery; it is nearly everywhere. It is no longer left to the comedians or talk show hosts, but is consistently used in “real political commentary” by the likes of Rachel Maddow andKeith Olbermann.  The comedians use it as a tool for the supremely foolish such as in Jon Stewart’s “The Daily Show”, and then the Bill Mahers of the world try to play both parts of the field when it suits them best. All of this has become a source to puff up those who lack understanding and followers continuously imitate these wind bags in the process of debate.  The masses receive their truth in sound bites and make a joke out of legitimate arguments in spite of their substance.  Try making a drinking game for every time Rachel Maddow rolls her eyes, or shakes her head in dismissal at a republicanor explains their positions with the hint of laughter in her voice and you’ll be as drunk as a lord.

Now, I love mockery as much as the next guy, especially if done with a thick British accent regarding a monarch. Mockery, in its most sincere form, is a derision of another’s foolery.  Dana Carvey’s President Bush is still my preferred way to order Moo Shu Chicken.  Steven Crowder and Greg Gutfeld send a thrill up my leg!  I can even appreciate Jon Stewart and Steven Colbert because the guys are funny.  There is a problem, however, when a charade becomes the foundation of certainty – and that is the problem today.  Too many plant their seeds of understanding in the bedrock of farce and give little charity to the arguments presented from their opposition.

Again, it is not just the left who fall victim to this pitfall.  As my opening quote reveals, we cannot allow bad arguments to be present in our struggle for liberty and limited government.  If we do, we leave open the door to mockery.  We must battle those bad arguments within with just as much fervor as we battle the ones made against us.

Original Post:  The Sentry Journal

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Of the People

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Capitalism isn’t simply a philosophy based on the way numbers trend, how to gain leverage, make money, or use debt as a resource.  Much of the philosophy of capitalism is based on the human element.  Without human nature, capitalism holds little water and socialism would do far better.  Within the philosophy is the idea that businesses will put their money wherever they are most apt to grow it.

Last month I wrote a couple of pieces that challenged the mindset of you (and me).  I basically said that our representatives are failures not because the offices are broken, but because the electorate is broken.  They are properly representing their voting base – ignorant and crooked.  If we want to change Washington, we must first change ourselves.  So, let’s pull both of these points together.

Milton Friedman once said, “The way you solve things is by making it politically profitable for the wrong people to do the right thing.” This idea stems from the trust of a conservative/capitalist mind and the knowledge that politicians are trying to, as Milton put it, “buy votes”.  In other words, our political figures are a type of business and as such, they will flux with the most profitable policies.  It is OUR job as the “consumer” to set the market values of those policies.

Mr. Gingrich is a great example of political expediency. He knows what is currently trending up in the political market and throws his political capital into that commodity.  The same is true of the rest of those who run our nation.  Very few in Washington are there because their convictions pressed them to “make a difference”, they are spending millions to win an office for their own benefit.  Congress has become a very cushy place to get a “job”.

Last November we sent a message to many congressional members – their stocks plummeted over night. We will have to do that this next November, and the November after, and the one after, ad infinitum.  It is easy to get frustrated, but it is our JOB to keep them accountable.  If Gingrich gets elected (still holding out for Paul), then it is our job to tell him what is politically lucrative.  If he doesn’t adhere, then we pull our support and put the bum on the curb.

We constantly clamor about the lack of Constitutional knowledge our politicians have or adhere to, but we too often forget that before any article was written to establish a government body, WE THE PEOPLE were given the task of forming a more perfect union, establishing justice, ensuring domestic tranquility, providing welfare, securing our prosperity, and ordaining the Constitution.  We have a responsibility too – and it is time we learned what it is and began doing it.

Original Post:  The Sentry Journal

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