Mark Levin on 2016: GOP Must Nominate Conservative for First Time Since Ronald Reagan

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Hat/Tip to Tony Lee at Breitbart.

When it comes to the perfect Conservative resume, Mark Levin’s is chock full of bona-fides. From his stint as a 19 year old member of his local school board, where he often times was the only nay vote due to his staunch Conservative outlook, to his volunteer work on Reagan’s presidential campaigns, to his career in the justice department during Reagan’s tenure in the Oval Office, Levin brings it. As if that wouldn’t be enough, he also has his decade long work at the helm of the one of the largest Conservative talk radio shows in the country, third to Sean Hannity’s second place and Rush Limbaugh’s top spot.

Mark also has penned several books on Conservatism, including the run away best seller (over ONE MILLION copies), Liberty and Tyranny: A Conservative Manifesto and his latest, which lays the framework for States’ rights and a way to amend the Constitution, bypassing Congress. It is titled The Liberty Amendments: Restoring the American Republic.

Adding to all that is the Landmark Legal Foundation, of which Levin is the President. He has worked cases before the Supreme Court, and taken the EPA and other alphabet agencies to task for violating the Constitution. In fact, although it was never reported in the MSM, Levin’s Landmark Legal Foundation was the entity that got the IRS scandal of targeting Tea Party and Jewish groups to the forefront. His initial letter to the Inspector General of the US Treasury got him a visit from two armed Treasury agents and that got the ball rolling towards the full investigation by the Attorney General’s office and the House Oversight Committee.

So, suffice it to say that Mark Levin is the de facto patriarch of the Conservative movement and he has a few choice words for the GOP concerning the 2016 Presidential election.

Conservative scholar and talk radio host Mark Levin said the GOP is “a party in trouble” that must nominate a bold conservative for president in 2016 if they do not want to get walloped yet again.

Speaking at Values Voter Summit on Saturday with Family Research Council President Tony Perkins, Levin, who is cementing himself as the intellectual godfather for conservatives in the age of Obama, said moderate candidates favored by the establishment and stand for nothing will never appeal to Americans who are hungry for leadership. 

“It’s very, very, important that we nominate a conservative for the first time since Ronald Reagan,” Levin said. “There are people under 50-years-old who have never had an opportunity to vote for a conservative president. We want to show them what it’s like. It’s our generation’s responsibility.”

Levin said “it’s invigorating, energizing” and “almost spiritual to get behind somebody with enthusiasm and excitement. To go door-to-door. That’s how you win elections.”

Mark described Conservatism and how it applies to modern times.

He said conservatism cannot be chopped up “conservatism is a way of life” where faith, spirituality, individuality, individual liberty, respect for the rule of law, and the Constitution are valued. Levin said conservatives try “to project founding principles onto modern day events.” 

“We are people of faith,” he said. “We believe in free-market capitalism and private property rights.”

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The establishment GOP has led the Party and the country down the primrose path towards socialism-lite. Mark gave the outline of victory in 2016, saying that we missed the boat on defeating Obama in both ’08 and ’12.

In the 2016 primary, Levin said conservatives can’t be split among various candidates. He said conservatives must look for “the most articulate, intelligent, charismatic conservative candidate that we can get behind” and “we need to start rallying behind one or two.” Levin said Obama was beatable in 2008 and “more defeatable in 2012,” and he just cannot stomach establishment consultants saying candidates like John McCain and Mitt Romney are the only ones who can beat someone like Hillary Clinton, whom Levin said was Obama in a pantsuit. 

“We need to take this party back,” he said. “We’re taking it back from cowards. We’re taking it back from corporatists.” 

Levin said he is a free-market capitalist and blasted crony capitalists who “use government and government policies to defeat their competition and take money from We the People, the taxpayers.”

“I’ve had it with an incompetent Republican bureaucracy and all of their consultants,” Levin said. “These people are not conservative Republicans. They are neo-statist, big-government Republicans.”

Mark then defined the Conservative we need in ’16.

Levin said establishment Republican candidates have lost more winnable races than conservatives, but the establishment continues to attempt to re-write history. They pat themselves for winning anti-Obama races and blame conservatives for losing races in which the establishment blunted enthusiasm among the grassroots, he said. 

“Their candidates are not appealing. Their candidates don’t stand for anything,” Levin said of establishment Republican candidates. “And when they do stand for something, they’re moving left; they’re not moving right.”

Levin said Americans want leaders who make “emphatic, unequivocal statements about Americanism and American principles” and speak about securing the country’s borders, getting the economy running again, and addressing World War III. 

“We need more conservatives who happen to be Republicans,” he said. 

And Mark left us with this admonition:

“We damn well better nominate a conservative in 2016 to save this country and save the Republican Party. We don’t have a lot of time left,” Levin said. “We cannot nominate another RINO, or we’re going to get our clocks cleaned again.”

 

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The Conservative Resistance Is On The Path To Victory

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How’s that for starting out the week on a positive note? In a long article, on the order of 3000 words, Daren Jonescu at American Thinker makes the case for our ultimate victory. By the second paragraph, I was hooked and had to keep reading to see where his thought thread was leading. In essence, he makes the case that our 100 year history of losing every major policy battle is what is leading us to victory. It is not so much that we will finally win the final battle. On the contrary, it is the frustration of our long and growing resistance is slowing down the liberal’s progress will cause them to finally over play their hand causing an absolute tidal wave of resistance that will wash them away for good. In other words, liberals will  end up defeating themselves. Let’s see how Jonescu arrives at this interesting conclusion.

Early in his piece, Jonescu challenges conservatives about their motivation. Conservatism by its nature is not about being radical or revolutionary. It is about preserving, conserving, and maintaining. Do conservatives know and agree on what it is they want to conserve and maintain? Although the author believes that American conservatives know very well where they want to go, we would have to agree, wold we not, not all conservatives are created equally. Many would say that the goal is to return to the limited government that our Founders envisioned and described in our constitution. Others would be content with smaller less intrusive federal government but they would still want to maintain some level of social programs. A few would go much further, wanting to do what the Founders were charged with doing and fix the Articles of Confederation.

Jonescu paints a very disturbing picture of where America is today:

Despite  all of Barack Obama’s hoopla about “fundamentally transforming” America, the  truth of the matter is even scarier than Obama’s threatening promise: the  fundamental transformation has, to a large extent, already happened.   Contemporary society has been gradually undermined, in the strict sense of  having had its terrain booby-trapped with moral explosives, over many  decades.  Obama’s promised transformation is merely the paperwork, writing  into law what has already been accomplished in culture.

In  short, Western society has essentially ceased to be the glorious crown of  humanity that it once was.  The wellspring of ethical individualism has  regressed into a fear-addled horde of collectivists.

[… ]

And  the civilization that, through its dual focus on human reason and the individual  soul, planted the seed of that political liberty which is literally  inconceivable in any other historical context has allowed itself to recede into  an increasingly unvarnished mob of angry, frightened children clamoring for  their “fair share,” for what they are “entitled to” — for a ruler to take care  of them, freedom be damned.

The author goes on to explain how, in Europe and the rest of the West, the decline into socialism has met less resistance than in America and, therefore, the liberals in Other Western nations were able to achieve their ends without showing their true colors. But, in America, we freedom lovers have been a much bigger thorn in the side of the liberals.

…This strength and this vehemence have manifested themselves in angry, careless  lurches, wild punches that expose progressives and their real agenda more fully  than they would ever have wished to expose themselves.

And  their open aggression has, as it were, awakened a sleeping giant.  The Tea  Party is the direct product of progressivism’s excessive “vehemence.”  And  the Tea Party’s effect, in turn, has been to stoke the left’s ire that much  further.  Even President Obama, who was intended to be the European-style  kinder, gentler face of socialism, has become angry at this resistance and has  dropped the veneer.

And, how does Me. Jonescu see this playing out?

The  days lying ahead of America will often be treacherous and sad.  They will  require nerves of steel from those who would resist progressivism’s desperate  last stand.  It has become patently clear that the present Republican Party  establishment is not up for this fight.  Constitutional conservatives must  do it themselves, using the GOP apparatus as just one tool.  They must  remain cool and workmanlike, rebuilding dams faster than the leftist waves can  knock them down.

This  is the means to conservative victory.  One cannot merely “go back” to a  better time.  Societal decay cannot simply be undone.  One must allow  — even encourage — the progressive degeneration to play itself out, fighting  it at every turn until the leftists, seething with an increasingly open hatred  of America, overplay their hand and self-destruct.  Finally, thanks to  steadfast conservative resistance, “progressivism” will be fully exposed for the  empty, anti-human power lust that it truly is.

So, is Mr. Jonescu right? Will the conservative movement finally achieve victory through a few more loses? A strange way to win a war, don’t you think? I find myself agreeing with his logic. Or, maybe it is that I am desperate to belive there is any path to victory for conservatives. All of my grandchildren are adults now and all but two have their own families. Two of my great-grandchildren will start kindergarten this Fall. It is my fervent wish that by the time they are adults that there will be an America waiting for them that is much closer to the America in which I grew-up in the fifties. It wasn’t perfect; but, it was pretty damn good!

Whether you agree with Mr. Jonescu or not, I do hope you will bookmark his article and read it at your leisure. He is a very talented writer.

Well, that’s what I’m thinking. What are your thoughts?

Original Post:  Conservatives on Fire

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Conservative Policies Lead Canada to Pass Increasingly Liberal America in Household Wealth

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One of my undergraduate degrees is in International Relations and through this I began to study other nations and their public policies. Over the years, I have continued to follow the politics of other nations- my post on Yulia Tymoshenko, former PM of Ukraine, is one of my most popular posts. And of course I live a short distance from the great nation of Canada, so it was with great interest that I read the story of how Canadians are now more wealthy than Americans.

Here is the important data:

...In 2011 the net worth of the average Canadian household was $363,202 compared to the average American household at $319,970. That gives the average Canadian $43,232 more than the average American… America’s “liquid (non-real estate) assets are still greater than Canadians’”… while Canada’s unemployment rate has fallen to 7.2 percent, America’s was stuck at 8.2 percent…

Although I’m no expert in Canadian politics, I will note a couple reasons why Canadian wealth seems to be holding steady or going slightly up. A lot of the credit goes to Paul Martin, who as finance minister for most of the 90s made huge budget cuts, scaling down government to 1951 levels and eventually balancing the budget. Although this led to a short term reduction in economic growth and a temporary loss in tax revenue, the economy was crucially rebalanced away from the public sector towards the private sector, soon resulting to an increase in Canada’s credit rating and rapid increases in government revenue resulting from a quickly growing economy. Martin was even responsible for lowering Canada’s debt-to-GDP ratio from a peak of seventy per cent to about fifty per cent in the mid-1990s.

Although his stint as prime minister from 2003 to 2006 was less successful, Canadian politics had been moved in a crucial way more towards conservatism and the results of this turn were very successful. After Stephen Harper’s Conservative Party took control of the government, he continued to make cuts to government, attempt to balance the budget, expand free trade, expand drilling and the energy industry, and move away from other failed liberal ideas such as green energy and increased regulations.

But the real story here is not the growth of the wealth of Canadians households, which we should applaud, but rather the sudden and stunning decline in wealth in American households, which should lead to hard and important questions. Canadian Douglas Haddow, writing in The Guardian, put it best when he wrote (source):

“Being richer than an America that has seen its blue-collar cities gutted and its middle class begin to hollow out is a rather empty sort of victory. Especially when you begin to suspect that we’re not actually winning, we’re just losing more slowly.”

Or as Rulein Hades at The Globe and Mail put it (source)-

“We’re not suddenly that much richer – our American cousins are suddenly that much poorer.”

The whole world is catching on that under President Barack Obama and the Democrats who support him in Congress, including Senator Stabenow here in Michigan, America is in decline- its middle class is being hallowed out as government policy increases the divide between rich (those who have government connections) and poor (those who do not have government connections) and government ceaselessly attacks capitalism and wealth creation. Although I have my doubts that we will ever recover to where we once were, the first step is for us to stop digging the hole, and we can do this by changing our leadership in November.

UPDATE: Let me be clear about something- Canada has not become a ‘conservative’ nation, it has instead become more conservative than it used to be and thus experienced growth (or at least less decline). Relative to its past, it has now more embraced life, liberty, and the creation and protection of property, and the results have been an increase in household wealth. Of course there are still many liberal elements in Canada, but these do not explain the growth in wealth and I would argue are in reality holding Canada back from further wealth and happiness. Conservative policies are a positive variable to the government equation, and the introduction of them into a closed system brings more prosperity and happiness to people.

Original Post:  A Conservative Teacher

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Conservative commentator Andrew Breitbart is dead at 43 UPDATED

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It is with great sadness that I must report of the untimely demise of Andrew Breitbart. A powerful internet and media activist who tirelessly upheld Conservative values, ideals and principles, Breitbart’s most memorable moment was arguably when he gave an impromptu press conference on the podium and microphone that then Congressman Anthony Weiner had set up, but had not yet used.

Breitbart was also one of the co-founders of the Huffington Post, which occurred before his switch from liberal to conservative. Here, he details his transformation from being a “default cultural lib” to staunch Conservatism.

His websites reported and confirmed his death:

The websites he founded ran a statement Thursday morning announcing that Breitbart, 43, died “unexpectedly from natural causes” in Los Angeles shortly after midnight. His attorney and editor-in-chief of those sites confirmed his death to Fox News.

“We have lost a husband, a father, a son, a brother, a dear friend, a patriot and a happy warrior,” the statement said. “Andrew lived boldly, so that we more timid souls would dare to live freely and fully, and fight for the fragile liberty he showed us how to love.”

www.breitbart.com

Tucker Carlson remembers Andrew Brietbart

Sean Hannity reacts to Breitbart’s death

UPDATED by Matt: 11:45 EST

Linked by:  Katy Pundit, Libertarian Advocate.  Thanks to all.

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Fuzzy Logic

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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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Why I support Ron Paul

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A few weeks ago I wrote an article titled I’m not the same conservative I was five years ago. In the article I describe my transformation from being a conservative who supported candidates with an “R” in front their name to a conservative who now supports a candidate whose first name begins with the letter “R.”  I wouldn’t have supported Ron Paul five years ago, but I do now because as I have said he’s the only candidate talking about liberty and liberty is what will save us. We are in such dire straits as a nation we can no longer turn a blind eye to these watered down conservatives claiming to be something they’re not.  Why has Ron Paul had limited time during the debates? Why has the media ignored him?  Why is it that in a time when we’re in such economic turmoil, the talking heads point out Ron Paul’s foreign policy position (which by the way aligns more with the foreign policy position of our founding fathers) and ignore his position that promotes a free market economy and capitalism.  Are they afraid of the message?  Are they worried that his stance on a number of issues could rock the status quo boat?  Ask yourself if the election of watered down conservatives in the past has advanced the conservative cause?  From where I sit it has actually made it worse.  We can’t afford to nominate another RINO or big government conservative.

Mitt Romney is a RINO plain and simple. The left is going to beat him up with RomneyCare and his flip flopping on the issues.  I don’t trust him as far as I can throw him.  Newt Gingrich might be a solid debater, but he’s also phony conservative who has supported big government programs in the past.  Before you throw your support behind Gingrich check out this article over at National Review Online; his record speaks for itself. Herman Cain has always my second choice, but his inability to effectively handle the sexual harassment charges hurled at him from the left has hurt him terribly.  He has lost key support with women and some social conservatives; support I feel he will not be able to recapture.  Rick Perry is in a state of flux right now.  I think he has the potential and money to make a run and I like what he has to say but because he is such a poor debater I’m afraid he won’t be able to stand toe to toe with Obama in a debate and win.  So this brings me to Ron Paul and why I support the man.

Ron Paul has been consistent in his message. He believes the key to America’s success rest with individual liberty.  He wants to bring an end to the manipulation of our currency by bringing an end to the FED.  He wants to eliminate the income tax and the IRS.  Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac would also be on his to-do list to shut down. His strong desire to reduce the size of government by eliminating wasteful agencies that stifle the growth of the free market throug

h their regulations is something all conservatives should get behind and embrace.  He wants to make our military a more effective force by eliminating wasteful programs and reducing our footprint throughout the globe.  He wants to get us back on the gold standard, forcing the government to live within its means because they will be unable to just print money.  These are a few things that Ron Paul wants to change about D.C. and they scare the hell out of both the left and right. I want to close the article with some quotes from Ron Paul. Please take the time to read them and if by the end you still can’t back Ron Paul, then what kind of conservative are you supporting?  Think about it.

Ron Paul quotes:

1913 wasn’t a very good year. 1913 gave us the income tax, the 16th amendment and the IRS.

A system of capitalism presumes sound money, not fiat money manipulated by a central bank. Capitalism cherishes voluntary contracts and interest rates that are determined b

y savings, not credit creation by a central bank.

All initiation of force is a violation of someone else’s rights, whether initiated by an individual or the state, for the benefit of an individual or group of individuals, even if it’s supposed to be for the benefit of another individual or group of individuals.

Another term for preventive war is aggressive war – starting wars because someday somebody might do something to us. That is not part of the American tradition.

Believe me, the next step is a currency crisis because there will be a rejection of the dollar, the rejection of the dollar is a big, big event, and then your personal liberties are going to be severely threatened.

Capitalism should not be condemned, since we haven’t had capitalism.

Deficits mean future tax increases, pure and simple. Deficit spending should be viewed as a tax on future generations, and politicians who create deficits should be exposed as tax hikers.

How did we win the election in the year 2000? We talked about a humble foreign policy: No nation-building; don’t police the world. That’s conservative, it’s Republican, it’s pro-American – it follows the founding fathers. And, besides, it follows the Constitution.

I am absolutely opposed to a national ID card. This is a total contradiction of what a free society is all about. The purpose of government is to protect the secrecy and the privacy of all individuals, not the secrecy of government. We don’t need a national ID card.

I am just absolutely convinced that the best formula for giving us peace and pr

eserving the American way of life is freedom, limited government, and minding our own business overseas.

I will always vote what I have promised, and always vote the Constitution, as well as I will not vote for one single penny that isn’t paid for, because debt is the monster, debt is what’s going to eat us up and that is why our economy is on the brink.

If you like small government you need to work hard at having a strong national defense that is not so militant. Personal liberty is the purpose of government, to protect liberty – not to run your personal life, not to run the economy, and not to pretend that we can tell the world how they ought to live.

Of course I’ve already taken a very modest position on the monetary system, I do take the position that we should just end the Fed.

Our country’s founders cherished liberty, not democracy.

The obligations of our representatives in Washington are to protect our liberty, not coddle the world, precipitating no-win wars, while bringing bankruptcy and economic turmoil to our people.

There is nothing wrong with describing Conservatism as protecting the Constitution, protecting all things that limit government. Government is the enemy of liberty. Government should be very restrained.

There is only one kind of freedom and that’s individual liberty. Our lives come from our creator and our liberty comes from our creator. It has nothing to do with government granting it.

You don’t have freedom because you are a hyphenated American; you have freedom because you are an individual, and that should be protected.

You can read all his quotes here>>

Liberty forever, freedom for all!

Original Post: The Sentry Journal

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I’m not the same conservative I was five years ago

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I’m not real sure the exact date of the change, but one thing is very different about me today as compared to five years ago; I’m not the same conservative I was back then.  Five years ago I supported acts, agencies, military endeavors, and spending I felt strengthened America’s standing in the world and promoted our form of representative style of government.  I didn’t care what method was used or how the task was complete. I was a staunch supporter of the actions of the Bush administration no matter what liberties were sacrificed to ensure the continued advancement of the American model and our way of life.  These are the ideals I believed were representative of the conservative view point or at least my understanding conservatism and I willingly fell in line behind them.  It wasn’t that I was a mindless tool; I just didn’t have the necessary tools to understand the difference between a form of conservatism that supported the above ideas and the one I embrace today.  It wasn’t until towards the end of the Bush administration when I started to question my own position on the issues.

It was the out of control spending of the Bush administration that really started me down the path towards reviewing my positions on a number of conservative issues; however it was his comments in Dec 2008 that really opened my eyes as to what I had supported for the previous 8 years. It was then when an outgoingPresident Bush stated in an interview with CNN the following, “I’ve abandoned free-market principles to save the free-market system.” He further went on to say, that the reason he abandoned free-market principles was to make sure the economy didn’t collapse. This in my mind was like saying that 1+1= 3, it just wasn’t adding up.  So I decided to take off my so-called conservative goggles and examine the acts of his administration over the past eight years with a critical eye.  The list of his big government solutions is extensive.  The No Child Left Behind act, The Patriot Act, TARP, the Medicare Prescription Drug Act, and The John Warner Defense Authorization Act of 2007 which allows the President to declare a “public emergency” and station troops anywhere in America and take control of state-based National Guard units without the consent of the governor or local authorities, in order to “suppress public disorder,”; all big government programs that infringe on the liberties of Americans.  These are the programs I and many other so call conservatives backed with little or no complaint.  I began to question what the modern day version of conservatism really stood for and if I was subscribing to some bastardized version of it.  I needed to know what conservatism was about and I felt the best source could be found in our own history.

I spent a great deal of money buying all kinds of books that pertained to the founders and their debates, conservatism, and the constitution. Books written by leading conservative intellectuals and various other historians; however the two books that really moved me were Mark Levin’s Liberty and Tyranny and the 5,000Year Leap.   Both books were very easy to read and opened my eyes to just how far we had steered off course as a people and republic.  We were embracing the failed political and economic systems Europe and moving away from what made America great; individual liberty and our free-market system.  Instead we were moving closer and closer to a system of government and economic activity that relied on central planning and governmental controls.  This is not what made our nation great and President Bush with an “R” in front of his name had gently steered us down this path for 8 years.  Five years ago I would have blindly supported a Mitt Romney as my candidate for President, not because he was the most conservative, but because he would have the chance to beat the Democrat holding office.  Not so much anymore.   I believe the solutions to our problems can be found in the past and that past encompasses principles that promote individual liberties which lead to unfettered free-markets.  Five years ago Ron Paul’s foreign policy position would have been viewed by me as irresponsible and naïve.  I would have rejected him as a viable candidate in a second and moved on to the next big government, establishment type Republican.  Today I am much different.  I cannot simply reject his position anymore because he is promoting the one thing that can save us…liberty.  I now believe I have a better grasp on what true conservatism is about.  It’s about limited government, liberty, the constitution, and preserving the institutions that promote these ideals.  It’s not about a prescription drug plan or an act that provides us a bit more security while at the same time sacrificing our liberties.  It’s not about repealing ObamaCare and replacing with another big government program.  It’s about liberty.  Without liberty we are nothing.  We are slaves to a system that will manage every aspect of our lives.  Without liberty we are no longer will be master of our own destiny.  Without liberty we lose the things that made America great.  Without liberty we are nothing.  This is something we conservatives need to always keep in the forefront when choosing who we believe will best advance the above ideals no matter who you support in the Republican primaries.  Saving America will require us to get back what we have lost…liberty.

Liberty forever, freedom for all!

Original Post:  The Sentry Journal

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Winning the Ideological war one Person at a Time

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The other day I learned that an individual I had a few political debates with in the past is now taking the time to educate himself about the founders.  His political leanings are to the left and he is now taking the time to learn about the founders.  I once told him it wasn’t about political parties; it’s about liberty, freedom, and free markets.  I didn’t hammer him for his beliefs; I simply stated that people must learn about the founders and the constitution so they can have a point of origin to base their political belief system on.  Apparently he now agrees.  Why is this?  I mean what made this left leaning liberal decide to step out of his safe zone and cross over to an area that is unknown and scary?  I believe there are two reasons for this change of heart.

The first reason is he feels in his gut that something is not quite right.  Something is amiss with our nation.  The economy is not turning around like they promised.  Our liberties are being traded off for security and freedom is under assault from every angle.  You see moderate liberals tend to feel government has its place in our society and that a certain amount of regulation in our lives is necessary.  However they also believe in freedom of choice and lately many of them are starting to see that their choices are being made for them and they do not like it.  Some of them are finally starting to realize that the far left fringe of their party is controlled by socialist, something these moderates are deeply opposed to.  This moderate liberal state of mind is the same mentality that bought into the conservatism Reagan championed.  They were your Reagan Democrats of the 1980s.  They’re patriotic, own guns, and believe in the system.  They’re not radical leftists and they make up a large portion of Democratic Party.  This is a group worth our attention.  They will fight you, but they will also listen to you.  It’s all how you approach them and present your position.

This is the second reason I believe he had a change of heart.  I approached him in a manner that was politically nonthreatening.  I didn’t talk about Republicans or Democrats; we talked about freedom and liberty.  We discussed the attributes of capitalism and socialism.  We talked about crushing debt and the future of our children.  We talked about the founders and the constitution.  We found common ground on a number of issues and I was careful not to come across as a know it all conservative.  I listened to him even though I didn’t agree with him.  He listened to me even though at the time he viewed me as just another conservative who didn’t care about the people.  I learned that he was not so much different than me.  He learned that conservative ideas were grounded in liberty, the constitution, and free market principles.  This is the method I used to approach him and now he’s reading about the founders.  I call that a win.

In my opinion this is how we must advance the conservative message, one person at a time.  We must seek opportunities to change the hearts and minds of those willing to listen.  The ignorant will not listen or even engage in the process until the process impacts them.  However there is an opportunity to reach these moderate Democrats.  They are somewhat engaged in the political process even though their misguided.  But what this means is they’re willing to engage you and this is when opportunity knocks.  Each of us will have a different approach based on the circumstance; however the conservative message will sell itself if it’s conveyed in a manner that appeals to the freedom loving side of most of us whether you identify with the either the left or right.  I challenge all my readers to seek an opportunity to change the ideological course of a moderate Democrat you know.  You might not always sell conservatism, but you’ll at least get them thinking.  And sometimes all it takes is to plant the seed and walk away; eventually it will take.

Liberty forever, freedom for all.

Original Post: The Sentry Journal

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Conservatism as the New Idealism

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For too long, it has been common knowledge in our society that leftist political philosophies contain within them the ingredients for an ideal state of affairs in the world. The perceived “humanism” and liberalism (in the classic sense) of the leftists emerged from the stark contrast between their ideas and that of the “establishment.” History is riddled with examples of how the “establishment” has wronged mankind, held back the spirit of progress, and led to countless atrocities. From religious wars to despotic rule to exploitative capitalism during the Industrial Revolution, the Old Order seemed to keep us all in a dark age where the few ruled over the many with an iron fist.

In general, revolutionary forces tended to be “leftist” while Old Order proponents were called “rightist,” terms originating from the French Revolution. Yet as leftist philosophies matured in the 19th century and the vestiges of the Old Order of monarchies and all-powerful Churches subsided, the leftists started to refine their concepts and better define the future ideal societies they had in mind. This refinement led to schisms among the leftists and today we have socialists, communists, anarchists, social democrats, progressives, and so on. In the United States, the characterization of the Left as the progressive, common-man political ideology has firmly established it as the idealistic philosophy… but modern Leftism in America is very far from idealistic.

From its foundation, Leftism and Progressivism in the United States is an ideology that focuses on a peculiar type of equality: equality of outcome. In itself, this may seem to contain an idealistic character, but that is only on the surface. From matters of race to gender to economic status, the progressives wage war on any sort of inequality that they are conscious of. They aim to shatter distinctions in gender, reform public expression to make it more palatable for people of all backgrounds, institute racial and ethnic quotas to make the distribution of power, wealth, and influence more “equal,” and use government as a means of preventing any one individual or group from acquiring an “undue” share of wealth.

Underlying this philosophy is the idea that man, when left to his devices, will always wage war on others, will always try to take from others, and must be told what is right and what is wrong. It is a philosophy that takes away from people the freedom to make their own decisions and empowers a central authority to redistribute all capital, be it economic or social, as it sees fit, all for the good of the whole. The progressive does not assume that people will act in the best interest of society on their own but rather that they will inherently do evil things and must be stopped. Leftism is pessimistic about the nature of humanity. To them, human beings are children who need constant supervision otherwise they will steal all of the other children’s toys and resort to bullying. This is evident in their approach to most social, political, and economic issues. They address gun violence with abolishing the right to bear arms. They address economic inequality by taking from those who earn and giving to those who do not. They insist on price controls, market intervention, strict regulation, and are almost religiously opposed to making profit of any kind. Given this reality, the fact that Leftism is regarded as the “idealistic” ideology seems to be more a matter of tradition than a matter of careful analysis.

In America, there is another political philosophy which takes a different approach to the question of how society should be arranged. Specifically, this philosophy says that society should not be explicitly arranged, just allowed to live and prosper in freedom. This philosophy is Conservatism. While not as extreme as libertarianism, which advocates for even less power to be given to the state, conservatism advocates a sort of middle way where there exists a government limited to a certain role.

In the United States, the Constitution provides a political framework whereby the government can operate through the consent of the people. The underlying principle of conservatism is freedom… and ultimately that human beings can and should make decisions for themselves, be responsible for those decisions, and be entitled to the fruit of their labor without heavy government interference. This idea is revolutionary in modern-day America where the continual expansion of the size, scope, and power of government is the paradigm. Not only is this idea revolutionary but at its core it posits that human beings have the capacity to run their own lives. It is a philosophy that is optimistic about man, while at the same time being realistic about the need for some sort of agreed upon authority to enforce contracts and rules. It is an idealism based on real conditions. The equality that conservatism guarantees is equality of opportunity, not outcome, because to enforce a uniform outcome is to deny the right of a person to benefit from or be held responsible for his or her actions.

Modern-day conservatism represents the hopes and dreams of all Americans, to be free, to be successful, to have a voice in our government. This is why conservatives emphasize respect for state’s rights and the separation of powers in government, because history has shown that central authority has the propensity to abuse power. This is why conservatives demand that judges be neutral arbiters of the law and not activist “re-interpreters” of the Constitution. This is why conservatives are opposed to increasing government interference in the economy and in our everyday lives. Conservatives are the new idealists. We believe that a better society is possible if we free the creative and productive powers of human beings. We do not merely believe that we should be free, we believe that we have the fundamental right to liberty. There is no limit to this right. It is absolute. And if we fall as a people in our exercise of this liberty, then we will learn and we will do better… and by iterations, our society will move forward, will improve, and our world will be better off for it.

So when I hear people in positions of power explain to me and my fellow Americans that we need to be guided by the gentle hand of government bureaucrats, that our rights need to be limited for the common good, and that we cannot reap the rewards of our own sweat, I do not consider them idealistic in the least… I consider them despotic. Leftism has become, not a total repudiation of the Old Order tyranny, but as an alternative, more acceptable New Order tyranny. This is neither “progressive” nor ideal for any society.

I hope that new idealistic souls will rise up and declare the old ideas over and done with. The sad part is that these idealists are attacked and portrayed as being part of that Old Order by the leftists, for they convince their followers in true Orwellian form that when we conservatives say “freedom” we mean slavery and when we say “individualism” we mean racism and class-ism. For the moment they control the major means of communication in our society, so revolution will be slower than we would like, but with new technology the message of optimism in our fellow man will breach the wall of disinformation that currently exists. To those conservatives out there who believe that we can live in a better world that is free, let everyone know that we are indeed the last idealists.

-AG

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Blogger Debate Series Continued – Third Party Viability question 2

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The question in this part of the continuing third party viability debate is:

Is a third-party vote “wasted?” If so, how? If not, why?

This question is trickier to answer than it appears. Because it assumes that any vote could be wasted. The simple answer to that question is, “No, a vote that is cast is never wasted.” To vote is to speak your conscience, to announce your choice for the candidate you want to represent you in public office. So in the purest sense, a vote cast is never a vote wasted, even if cast on a candidate you are sure won’t win; third party or no.

Now if the question presented were to ask, “Is a vote for a third party what is needed to, A. send a message to D.C. and B. the way to get our country back on track to the principles and concepts of our founding?” In that case the answer would be a resounding “No!” Why you ask? The answer lies in what the electorate wishes to accomplish. Change of ‘regime,’ be it Democrat OR Republican; or more specifically, change of ideology in either party can only come about via infiltration and usurpation of said party. You cannot effect change by presenting a third party. You can go on all day how the Republicans blew it after they took power in the ‘90s, and I will not argue with you on that point. They did blow it, big time. At first, they were gang busters, presenting America with a balanced budget four years in a row, but in due time, the temptations of power caught up with them. But is the answer to this really the development of a new political party?

Even a viable third party would only offer that a new kid on the block, once in power would succumb to the temptations and vices that both the Democrats and Republicans have in the past. As I stated in the first part of this debate, absolute power corrupts absolutely.

That being said, we are left with two options:

  1. Conservatives need to take back control of the GOP
  2. We, the Conservative electorate need to remain vigilant and hold our party to the highest standards and keep them on track to the road of smaller government and more individual liberties

This is by far, the hardest path to carve in today’s political landscape, but as my Dad once told me, doing the right thing is rarely the easy thing. It is much easier to sit back and take the populist route by spouting third party rhetoric and trying to capture the energy of the Tea Party Movement that is present in America right now, bending it to your will. The Tea Party’s power lies not in it being a third political party, but as a wake up call to the powers that be in the Republican Party. So far it is working. If you want proof of the power of the Tea Party, then look to the recent elections in Virginia, New Jersey and especially in Massachusetts. THAT is where the power of the Tea Party lies, in motivating the moderate Democrat and Independent voters to make choices for conservative candidates.

Lastly let me say that if people want third party choices, then let those choices be in the primaries. For then you don’t have to worry about splitting the vote and this might be the only viable way a third party could work in this country. A healthy, robust primary race with Republican and third party candidates could put a fine point on the message we need to send to D.C. Mounting a third party in the general presidential election would only serve to spell disaster for the conservative movement in America.

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God & Guns

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Since I began contributing to Conservative Hideout 2.0 many of you have gotten to know me as a staunch Conservative, unabashed and unafraid of that label. But there is another side to me that may surprise some of you. I spent the better part of two decades traveling this great nation of ours as the road manager of a rock band that I would bet none of you have heard of. But in that capacity, I made acquaintances with many names you might in fact know. I also worked for some of those bigger names. My band toured with Head East and we also did shows with Dereck St. Holmes of Ted Nugent band, James “J.Y.” Young of STYX and Gregg Allman from the Allman Brothers’ band. In addition to that I have met many more people in the classic rock music business, both those on stage and off. Even though at that stage in my life I rarely paid attention to politics, looking back I can see that the vast majority of them are conservative in their outlook on life.

Why do I tell you all this? No, I am not just trying to drop names, but rather I want to discuss a particular band. I will admit that I only personally met and talked with one of them, but I know that they are a good bunch of people. About 5 or 6 years ago I was working with Head East in the capacity of road manager; we did a show in Columbia, MO with Eddie Money and Lynyrd Skynyrd. It was quite a day on that college campus and I was pretty excited to be there with not only Head East, but to see two really big names from my youth. Before they went on, I got to meet and talk with Rickey Medlocke, one of the guitar players for Skynyrd. I had a copy of the famous “Street Survivors” Skynyrd album and he signed it for me. Rickey was nice, articulate and came across as a down to earth guy next door.

Now I turned on the TV the other night and Sean Hannity had Lynyrd Skynyrd on his show, they were there to announce that they would be headlining his Freedom Concerts and also to tout their new album, God & Guns. All too often, when a celebrity makes a political statement these days it is usually in favor of Chavez or some other leftist dictator or at the very least it is to put down those of us on the right. This album, this message, and this affirmation of the majority of Americana is why I am writing this article. I would like to review it and share some of its message with you all.

Lynyrd Skynyrd - God & Guns
Lynyrd Skynyrd - God & Guns

God & Guns is probably one of Skynyrd’s best studio albums of the last two decades, if not of their entire career. Of the twelve tracks on this album, only the title track, God & Guns was not written by the band. Johnny Van Zant, the lead singer of the band said, “It’s the only song that we actually did not write on the CD, but our management brought it in. And it was just a guy with an acoustic guitar and the words and the meaning of it was so…it hit us, it hit home with us. And we said ‘There’s our album. There’s our album title.’ This is what we stand for, you know.”

The title track, God & Guns is very powerful. It comes across as a simple song, with not much accompaniment, but its the lyrics that pull you in and get your attention. Toward the end of the song, the momentum builds and they end it in typical Skynyrd southern rock fashion, that is to say strong.

Last night I heard this politician
Talking ’bout his brand new mission
‘Liked his plans, but they came undone when he got around to God and guns
I don’t know how he grew up
But it sure wasn’t down at the hunting club
Cause if it was he’d understand a little bit more about the working man

(Chorus)
God and guns keep us strong
That’s what this country was founded on
Well we might as well give up and run
If we let them take our God and guns

Out here in my neck of the woods
Where God is great and guns are good
You really can’t know that much about ’em
If you think we’re better off without ’em

Well there was a time we ain’t forgot
You could rest all night with the doors unlocked
But there ain’t nobody safe no more
So you say your prayers and you thank the Lord

For that peace maker in the dresser drawer

God and guns (God and guns), keep us strong
That’s what this country, Lord was founded on
Well we might as well give up and run,
If we let ‘m take our God and guns.
Yeah we might as well give up and run
If we let ‘m take our God and guns

Another stand out song on this album is called That Ain’t My America; a song that hits home with the political dynamic that confronts Conservatives in America today. The subtle references to “Hope & Change” in the first verse and to the now infamous quote by Obama about people in mid-America “clinging to their bibles and their guns” in the third verse made me smile when I heard it for the first time.

Sometimes I wanna light up underneath the no-smoking sign
Sometimes I wished they’d tell me how justice got so blind
I wish they’d just leave me alone cause I’m doing alright
You can take your change on down the road and leave me here with mine

Cause that ain’t my America, that ain’t this country’s roots
You wanna slam old Uncle Sam but I ain’t lettin’ you
I’m mad as hell and you know I still, bleed red white and blue
That ain’t us, that ain’t my America, that ain’t my America

Yeah I was standing there in Dallas, waiting on a plane
I overheard an old man tell a young soldier thanks
Young soldier hung his head and said “Its hard to believe
You’re the only one that took the time to say a word to me”

And the old man said…

That ain’t my America, that ain’t this country’s roots
You want to slam old Uncle Sam but I ain’t lettin you
Yeah I’m mad as hell and you know I still, bleed red white and blue
That ain’t us, that ain’t my America, that ain’t my America

It’s to the women and men in their hands they hold a bible and a gun
And they ain’t afraid of nothing when they’re holding either one

Now there’s kids that cant pray in school, hundred dollar tanks of gas,
I can tell you right now this country ain’t, ain’t supposed to be like that

No, that ain’t my America, that ain’t this country’s roots
You want to slam old Uncle Sam but I ain’t lettin you
Yeah I’m mad as hell and you know I still, bleed red white and blue
That ain’t us, that ain’t my, that ain’t my America, oh no, that ain’t my America

The entire album really is top quality Lynyrd Skynyrd at their best. I highly recommend that you go out and get a copy of it. The band has managed to breathe life into a genre that many people say is gone. This album really does please not only the Skynyrd fan, but the rock fan, the country fan, and even the metal crowd. From the harder rockin’ Still Unbroken, to the softer sounds of Unwrite That Song, to the bluesy sounding Comin’ Back For More and Storm there is something in this album for everyone. And besides, we need to reward those celebrities that are brave enough to stand up with their art and go against the main stream media and the far left stance in this country. Like they say, we might as well run, if we let them take our God and guns.

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Third Party?

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I have to admit that over the last several years, I have been torn about whether or not there is a need for Conservatives to leave the Republican party and either form a new party, or join one of the small, already extant, Conservative parties. I have been on both sides of the fence, so to speak, and have been unable to come to a full decision. A recent comment on another post prompted me  to again consider the issue. I think it’s time we revisit this debate.

First up, the “leave the Republicrats” side of the debate:

We are tired, as Conservatives, with the Republicans talking Conservative on election day, and then doing the following:

  1. Growing the government

  2. Increasing spending

  3. NOT fighting to shrink government and regulation

  4. Backing down from the liberals on social issues

We believe that every election cycle, we are subjected to platitudes and empty promises, soon to be broken after the the polls close. We also believe that there is no “conservative way” to do big government. The two are mutually exclusive, and the very idea does not represent what a majority of rank and file Republicans believe. Research shows that they are overwhelmingly Conservative, and history shows that they not being served by the Republican Party.

The issue is that the core of the Republican Party is moderate. Moderates sit in positions of power, and either control and/or contribute large sums of money to the party. Consequently, moderates, at least at the national level, have far too much control. They are not likely to relinquish this control and seem to look at Conservatives with contempt. They compromise and cooperate with the Marxists on the left, and leave us betrayed and angry. They have failed us on so many occasions, there are many willing to leave the party altogether.  Still others have “dropped out” entirely, and are waiting for a party that will represent them.

Now, the Republicans in the Congress have been talking a good game lately. They have been standing up to the president and the Democratic majority. This leads me two questions, “Where were you a few years ago when Bush was spending too much and you had the majority? It was your failure to live up to Conservatism that caused us to lose in ’06, and again in ’08. How will you behave if Republicans take back the Congress in ’10?” I’m afraid I already know the answers.

Conservatives do not want to have to chose between Demicans and Republicrats, or socialism, and “socialism lite.” We want a real Conservative choice, a party that will act like Conservatives AFTER the election. We want a party that will REALLY shrink the size and scope of government, and restore it to it’s constitutional limits.

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Now, for the “We must re-take the Republican Party” side:

Breaking away from the Republican Party plays into the hands of the left. With resistance to them split, they can ram whatever socialist legislation they want down our throats. We would not have the power to stop them.  We barely do now.  They will take over health care, regulate talk radio out of existence, regulate the Internet, raise taxes to impossibly high rates, create a debt that will enslave out children, pass environmental regulations that would kill American industry and jobs, and ruin this great nation, perhaps permanently.

The fact is this; we need a well established and funded party hierarchy to achieve our goals. Starting a new party, even if successful, would take years to accomplish-years that we do not have.

Admittedly, The Republican party is not perfect – we have our internal struggles, but there IS a difference between the parties. Would Reagan have attempted to deceive the people with a single payer system that will eventually ration care and kill Americans? Would either Bush have coddled communist dictators, and undermined democracies in Central America? Would any Republican administration have gone overseas to apologize to the dictators of the world, while at the same time throwing Israel under the bus? Would any Republican administration support a Marxist redistribution scheme concocted in the name of “saving the Earth?” I think not.

We have to realize that even with 40% of the population defining themselves as Conservatives, it’s still not enough to win an election out right. Like it or not, we need the moderates. That being said, we need to remind them that we, as Conservatives, are in the majority. They need to realize that if they do not listen to us, we WILL eventually leave. We need to exert our influence over the party and make sure that the promises made in the campaign are translated into action. We also need to weed the RINO’s out of the party. They are worse than moderates, as they have shown a willingness to betray us anytime doing so would enhance their own personal position.  The eight that voted for Cap and Trade need to know that we have not forgotten about them, and we should find Conservatives to run against them in the primaries. If they leave the party, that’s well and good. They should join Arlen Specter, who continues to show that his political philosophy is one of cowardice and convenience.

If given the choice, capturing the Republican Party is the most expedient way to forward our agenda. Creating a new party out of thin air will take resources, and more importantly, time. We have neither of those in abundance, especially when confronted with Obama and his socialist agenda. The danger is simply too great.

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What what I have read or heard from others, this covers some of the major points of this issue. This is a worthy debate to have at this time, especially as the President’s plans are being thwarted. He and his minions will be back. They never give up, but I think we can use the summer recess to consider these “less immediate” issues. I believe we have to start looking to the future and how we can best take our ideals and put them into action. I’m still on the fence with this issue. A year ago, I was all for leaving the party. Now, the risk of failure and the possible consequences of said failure, are making me more cautious.  No matter what we do, failure is NOT an option.

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