The #1 thing I have gotten tired of reading about from the Elite Right is about 'by the book conservatism'. You know the type, like their counter-parts on the Left? Just do this or that because someone wrote about how good it is and everything will be peachy-keen? Doesn't matter if it is Adam Smith on the Right or Karl Marx on the Left, each and every time that I hear someone either quoting a piece of text or citing some previous thinker, or just waving their hands in the 'just do this and everything will be so much better' direction, none have addressed the central point as to *why* such things are valuable and what the *reasoning* is behind them. For those in the 'Federalist' camp you do not start any reply by basing it on what the founding concepts of federalism are, why they are good and why they matter. For those on the 'Progressive'/Socialist/Communist side of things, you have not bothered to actually study those systems as they have been tried and criticize them via contextual analysis and how their methodology and outlook are a poor fit with human liberty and freedom.
These are not 'pie in the sky' issues as both are represented in the reason the United States is a separate Nation and why these things were important to us to seek to become one.
If the Left has been on a march of 'Progressivism' to make government our caretaker and remove our freedoms and liberties, those on the Right have been trying to straightjacket society with a set of beliefs that have not received review as to applicability to the modern US. What is strange is that these two concepts both finally see government as a tool to 'guide' or 'over-rule' society in many realms that are extremely personal and left up to the individual via the founding documents. Those founding documents go far beyond the Declaration, Constitution and Federalist papers. They include works from before our founding, so as why and how Nations work was well understood via things like de Vattel's Law of Nations and why the common law fits into that conception as seen from Blackstone's Commentaries on the English Common Law. These are not mere historical documents, as President Wilson asserted about the Declaration of Independence, something that only applies just when it is written and never again to be used, save as a general hand-waving to make a point or two. These documents and others, like the works of Grotius on the Laws of War and Peace and the Laws of the Sea, are not prescriptive views: they are not telling you what to do. What these works do is use analysis and description to seek out the patterns of Nations, Laws and how Citizens act within Nations and why these things are important. They become 'laws' in this context as the same common patterns arise again and again and again, and are thus descriptive of how mankind *works* at some basic level.
One of the most fascinating things I've done is go back to source texts and read some of these works, not in whole, certainly, but tens and hundreds of pages enough from *each* to get a good feel for what the author is doing, how they are doing it and what their overall points actually are. Thus, when I read something like Smith's Wealth of Nations, I do not assume that he is *right* in any assertion, but seek to ask 'how does his descriptive analysis correlate to the world then and now?' It is surprising, to me at least although I am sure this has been covered in great volumes of text and many dead trees by now, that Adam Smith got a central proposition of his viewpoint exactly, positively dead wrong: agriculture is not a static industry, but one amenable to the very forces he outlines for all of industry.
By pre-supposing a set point that is non-factual, the rest of his analysis must then be re-examined to see if there are any *other* contextual non-alignments between descriptive analysis done in his era, in which he is right, and extending past it, in which he has made some major presumptions that are not correlating with his overall analysis. While one can come into agreement with much of his work, a major flaw on the basis of human survival with industry has profound impacts on the world, as we have seen when we ignore that gross error and put in place a trade regime that ignores it. The US did that with Mexico and Canada and the profound impacts of forgetting that industrial means changes the basis of agriculture and can actually hurt a society was never addressed and we live with that to this very day. Yet, by Adam Smith based analysis, it should never have happened, but it did and his understanding of agriculture, technology and the sciences must have doubt cast on them. His overall thesis may be correct, and even extensible to agriculture, but the means and methodology will need to address the Law of Nations and the respect of Nations to each other's societies for the economic basis of producing this vital thing known as food.
More fascinating is that have grown up in a socialist household, I can then apply the exact, same tools to Socialism! Yes, I criticize rock-solid outcomes from works on the Right and Left... and to socialism I use the very pragmatic idea that it had a set of ideas on human progress that have turned out fundamentally in error, and that socialists (of many stripes) make a compounding error in the theory and practice realm of things. Thus it not only has an erroneous basis for human achievement and human nature (man is defined by work? really? everyone wants to work? ever have a real job in your life where you never met a slacker?), but then compounded by not trying to realize that when applied things do not turn out as foretold. If the analysis was correct, you should get the results you expected. We now have decades of non-results and *still* have people wanting to try, yet again, with such social theories.
Doctrinaire views, those adhering to doctrine because it is doctrine without doing personal analysis to see if it actually has some basis for being more than just doctrine, has impoverished the Right and 'conservatism' for nearly 20 years. So many laud President Reagan that so few remember that he did *not* hold doctrinaire views on many things and, instead, sought to associate good ideas with society and then indicate how the ideals of society are expressed in those good ideas. Some of those were 'conservative', yes, but not the 'if you just do it the way that the Elites think it should be done everything will be fine' school of government. President Reagan's economic analysis of the USSR was dead-on, and yet he rarely spoke of it, save for the effects of impoverishment of the human condition and the human spirit under a tyrannical regime. That latter had much wider appeal than the former, and presenting an analysis based on economic understanding might have made him come off cold to some, thus the more palatable route of presentation was that of the basis of the Nation: liberty and freedom.
President Reagan could also get away with calling for tax cuts because of the promise to cut government size and reach, then call for tax hikes to ensure that the USSR was confronted across the board. Yet, between those two, he never, ever got around to cutting the size, scope and power of the federal government: his social justification for his views were not adhered to. He could win on the power of his personality and beliefs, but the Party that he left behind did not see any reason to adhere to any methodology to carry them out. The 'Gingrich Revolution' failed due to the large numbers of Republicans who did not abide by a 'Contract with America' and felt that, just like President Reagan, they could break their commitment to social and societal values due to personal whimsy and wanting to be 'liked'. Thus the Republican Party that had been a beacon for those wanting smaller, more accountable and less intrusive government lost that trust and it has yet to be regained by *any* party in the US.
This past election was so out of whack that no one running at the National level could even state a coherent way to support the actual society of the US by making the federal government smaller and more accountable. Going by line item to 'cut programs' or trying to 'cut the Pork' are worthy goals, but to no good ends: they have no stated rationale for why these are good for society. 'Good Government' is not the same as a strong society, and a 'good strong and despotic government' can be very, very bad for society. Actually addressing the culture of the US is now beyond the two political Parties: they each want to re-make America to suit their beliefs, not come into a common citizen dialog on what is best for the individual to support society. Government cannot mandate 'good behavior' without becoming tyrannical in that mandate: human behavior is not a mandate from the top down, but built from the bottom up.
No one in politics dares address this and make it the underlying theme and rationale for a political ideology because it is NOT political: it is cultural and social. Yet these are the two themes this Nation was founded on, having a strong society and a government that acted in a minimal fashion so as to protect everyone at the level of the Nation State. To do that government at that level cannot save *you* personally because it is not set up to deal at that scale of things, that is what State and local government are for. The dread worry at the time of the founding was that the National government would slowly erode the power of State and local governments, take over things it was not made to do and that this would infringe on the liberty and freedom of the people of the Nation.
Many on the Left laugh at ideas of a culture to support government, but that is what they want in the end: to mandate a culture that supports their form of government, whatever that happens to be this nanosecond. It tends to change very quickly on the Left, but the overall drive to gain more power and scope for government has not changed for decades. By having so many on 'the other side' politically mirror such ideas in the Right or 'conservative' realm, no one bothers to notice that BOTH their arrows point in the direction of more and more powerful government. That is 'Progressivism' on the Left and Right: punish people for succeeding, halt liberty when it is not in accord with a doctrinaire belief system and then claim it is for some larger good ('good of society' or 'for the children' show up pretty often). While the Right or 'conservative' realm claims so much for folks keeping their own money, they have done very little to reduce the size, scope or reach of government and just using the number of federal regulations makes that apparent. The Right is regulation crazed, to the point of wanting to stop Internet Gambling *before* winning a couple of wars. The Left or 'liberal' persuasion seeks to impoverish the pocketbook so that all are equally poor and then defend 'rights' that corrode society so that those working in the criminal or Private War realm are equal to or greater than Citizens and get more defense in their ill actions that Citizens do in their daily affairs.
I was very and extremely reticent in casting my vote in this last election, and had no small amount of anger at the Elitist philosophy that has captured both political parties so as to distance them from the common man. We saw glimmers of it with Gov. Palin, and her time spent as a small business owner running a fishing business in Alaska, enjoying the culture she grew up in and the ways it guided her to good political ideas points to a woman who lives out her beliefs and adheres to them in a political realm, and yet accommodates her personal beliefs to those of the people of her State so as to run tighter government. That is an absolute inversion of the current political order, in which doctrine mandated by Elites then gains favor or disfavor based on what their doctrines are. and seek to change society to those doctrines so as to better suit them.
Transnationalism is a squishy set of ideals on purpose: those supporting them believe in dissolving personal liberty in terms of 'social equality' in which a person is no more than the sum of their race, religion, creed or ethnic background as decided by the Elites. Unfortunately very few of those supporting elitist ideals understand that they are not part of the Elite class and would become this thing known as 'subjects' that the Elite class then works the belief system on. Yet it is the Elitist view that local culture must be subordinate to either National or International mandates or conform to those who 'don't like us' that drive that view. It is an attempt to liquidate a society based upon the rights of man as an individual and put in force one that is governed by Elite groups and cliques, that then remold society to their liking.
Personally I am an old school, Law of Nations sort of guy: a Nationalist with the understanding of how and why Nations interact the way they do. I am *not* a National Socialist and have nothing that I want from from Fascism or Nazism: they are both abhorrent to supporters of the Rights of Man as an Individual. The Left loves to tar everyone on the Right as 'Fascist' but forget that Fascism IS National Socialism. Which is, of course, a re-writing of history in a most Orwellian way, and trying to press that assertion into some kind of 'fact' when the actual, observable events and happenings do not fit those purported 'facts' one bit. By following Nationalism and the Rights of Man as an Individual and recognizing that All Men are Created Equal without regard to gender, skin color or ethnic origin, one comes out with a very different view of modern day society that sees it not as 'progressive' or even progressing, but retrograde and heading towards Statist and even Transnationalist Imperial ends as practiced by both the current Left and Right.
I stand against all Empires that attempt to impose beliefs from the top down.
In Iraq we opened dialog with tribes, and asked that the people throw open their doors to a full gamut of political parties so that the widest expression of liberty in society could happen. Which society is more free? One with two parties in perpetual control or one with hundreds vying to describe a good path forward for the greater society? And the people of Iraq could have voted in another DICTATOR IF THEY WANTED TO! You cannot mandate democracy, and the people of Iraq had a clean and easy choice between electing another dictator to continue on in human misery or to try *something else*. That is what the invasion provided by removing a dictator: giving the people of Iraq a choice for the first time in decades, and even that prior choice was not one that could be called 'free' as it fell under the British Mandate which had already set up a system rigged to be non-free. The absolute vitriol with which the Left attacked democracy in Iraq was stunning. That the Right dared not make a full-throated response about the Rights of Man as an Individual to create society and have a choice over government is one of the blackest marks of cowardice I have ever witnessed in America as it is a betrayal of why we formed this country.
In not doing what the Left expected, that is put a puppet regime in power, they decried NOT doing that as IMPERIALISM!
I assume they would have welcomed a puppet regime as 'democracy'? Probably so given how twisted the political dialog has gotten. That anyone who actually practices freedom is *attacked* and not defended by *anyone* is now par for the course. That is not the hallmark of a free State but one shifting into authoritarian and, soon, totalitarian modes. If the Left decries the Right as Fascist, then they forget that these are mirror entities and that the direction of increased power to the State is Fascist on *both* sides.
And the Left claims to support liberty? Well for the Elites, yes... the rest of us will just have to be administered to by caring bureaucrats, I guess. When the political Left can no longer even begin to put together a reason why society needs to have representation as a whole, and not as a group of voting blocs and 'identity groups', then we have a falling apart of the common society so that all minimal contributing parts of it are made out to be *exactly* equal to the majority culture. If the goal is to destroy majority based culture then that is also the prescription for the dissolving of the Nation that is to represent that culture. This is enforced by top-down based federal laws and mandates on race, income, and things like sexual affinity, so as to diminish or destroy the large scale culture of the Nation. By enjoying every little minority and giving them a day or month for their history, we soon lose the common thread of our common history amidst a tangled skein of pet peeves, accusations and grudges going back centuries. That is *not* trying to form a more perfect Union.
Notice that the Right has the exact, same, problem in trying to mandate the outcomes of society by government? Gambling, alcohol, pornography, marriage and the determination of individuals on their personal lives is now the fodder for the political Right to try and make society conform to their political ideal of it. Hey! If you supported a stronger culture at HOME you wouldn't need to take a Statist page from the Left to enforce it from government... but that would require actually adhering to the ideals of the vaunted Ronald Reagan, actually dismissing those of Teddy Roosevelt and taking up the position that society at the smallest level is best able to manage itself and does not need an overly intrusive federal government to do that. I have problems finding those on the Right who will actually say that.
I don't like this from EITHER side of politics and detest it in ALL that claim how much 'good' government can do for society and the individual.
Marriage? I always thought that the sacrament was bestowed by God upon willing individuals and that the States could figure it out for themselves. Silly me, that is FEDERALISM. Can't have that on the Right. Nope, it needs to drag religion into it, even when abiding by Westphalia means that we must go beyond religion and seek tradition and common support for such things amongst the widest possible base of society. That means keeping government small and accountable, not by putting a damned amendment into the Constitution. See Amendment Eighteen? Alcohol, abolition thereof based on religious grounds? See the only Amendment to be REPEALED? Can the Right not learn its lesson there? Mandating a 'good' for society now may hamper the growth of society or even shift the status quo so that illegality is bestowed upon those that get a *private* sacrament and seek *no* State recognition. Those that want 'gay marriage' can get married any damned time they please... but if they want State support they do have to show why what they are doing is upholding the greater society and securing the liberty and freedom of everyone else, first. Just like marriage does amongst 'straight' couples. And if you take a look at the divorce rate, and see the problems of State interference in what is, essentially, a contract, one begins to suspect that using government to *enforce* the good of the sacrament is coming to ill ends for society. But letting the Citizenry figure it out for themselves and removing the 'good' of supporting marriage and treating all individuals as equal would be upholding the US Constitution.
Can't have that!
Want tax breaks for a married couple? Tell you what, lower the damned taxes for everyone so we can ALL afford to contribute more to society and to the safeguards of it. That would mean that we would seek less from government, not more and then exempt the married from a portion of their burden. Yes, raising children is a very important job to do: so important that I do not want government involved in it at the Federal level as they are the least able to make good law for all conditions in society in that realm. Let the States mangle it to their heart's content, and let private firms that want to give benefits or reduce other costs for this public good do so. The moment it becomes 'about the money' it loses value as a societal good: affix a price and the priceless is devalued. That was done by the majority culture, not the minority wanting to cash in on the deal. And, to this day, in any Church that is willing to marry gay couples, they may do so on private terms and if they do not seek any public benefit, then where is the harm in that? Getting the money and politics out of this realm allows private individuals and their churches to figure it out on their own. Let us have government that cleanly taxes the Citizenry, so we can all know just what our burden is to our common government, and take out the loopholes and their corrosive effect of making the common man expect that he should have a *break* from that burden.
Size of government? If my concurrence with Tom Paine on Common Sense is one that I hold, as it is common sense, after all, then I never, ever, want to give the place where we put our negative liberties for our common protection to have ANY scope beyond a few things we hand it and then hold it so closely accountable that it has problems breathing. So what is up with all the steroids, oxygen, weight sets and bleeding the American People to feed government? Why is that what we get as a prescription from both sides of the political spectrum? It is sort of like the Middle Ages cure for anemia: leeches! Yes, that was their cure for everything. Just like government is the panacea cure-all of the modern age. Got a problem? Let government fix it for you... so you don't have to worry your little head about anything and just let government tell you what to do and what not to do and leave you nothing to decide on your own. Your betters will decide that for you...
Free Trade? Well the Right wants to make us Transnational and the Left wants to impoverish us by cutting it off, so how about some nice middle ground where we REWARD democracies and PUNISH tyrannies and try to get along with the former as best we can to protect our liberties and let the folks stuck in despotic regimes figure out that the only way to make things better is to *get rid of them*? Nope, can't be done, far too much common sense in that and holding other Nations accountable for their actions and treaties. Lets just be *nice*, and I'm sure it will all work out so well... just as it did on 9/11. Yes that is a broad paint-brush on the Left and Right: they deserve the same tar in my book. The idea is that trade is held accountable to our common values which should be liberty, freedom, republics and representative democracy with a checks and balance system. Enticing trade from China, say, that impoverishes its people, abuses its working force, pollutes the hell out of its cities and countryside, uses authoritarianism to limit the size of its population and then builds a house of cards on bad debt that underlies a minimum of 30% of their GDP is doing NONE of that. By changing their party intent to that of National Socialism, that is to say Fascism, the people of China may have more money in their pockets, but are otherwise suppressed, put into horrific working conditions, and can be so overworked as to die from that lovely State 'guided' economy. Meanwhile the 'fat cats' never have to worry about doing a damned thing right as the State underwrites the bad loans and those 'capitalists' get to walk away from their mistakes scot free. Any comparison between that and the current bailout of the bank holding companies in the US and the current boards of the auto companies, private lending institutions and whoever else is bellying up to the trough is purely intentional. The point of our trade as a Nation is to spread the values of liberty and freedom we hold, not to take up the same authoritarian ways as those we detest.
A culture based on liberty, freedom and personal achievement and accountability of government does not support either the Left or Right politically in America as they are configured today. It sees a choice, at best, as a 'least worst' sort of deal. Not a choice for good, but just less bad than the other. Like having to choose between Cthulhu and Satan: just which one is *less bad* for you? This is some form of political negative schizophrenia that never realizes that supporting a common culture as it *is* and working *with it* is its *own reward*. Nope, they want to 'remake it' in their own Promethean images from such lovely Elite classes that can never be bothered to take time and explain just what their ideals mean and why they are meaningful. Thus 'free trade' is shorn from the understanding that it is tied directly to the Nation, not just its economy, and that 'bright hopes' require good results before investing too much in authoritarian regimes. Similarly the insular 'Buy American' that props up horrific governing boards that can't look beyond next month in the private sector and seeks to diminish trade and impoverish the Nation from the public side, is no good at all, either. Our understanding that trade is part of the economy, that it must support what we do as a Nation and that it must REWARD our friends and allies is so totally askew that we now use it as carrots to give to tyrants and authoritarian governments that may not actually 'like us'. If getting them to 'like us' means bribing them with goodies that will help them get strong enough to start killing us, then I would prefer we don't do that. All the enticement to China over three decades has NOT changed the basic rates of poverty, literacy or made the government there one bit more accountable to its citizenry. That is not a 'success' but a dismal failure for our Nation.
Why don't I trust the 'by the book Right'? It is Elitist and sees more in common with the Elite on the Left than it does with the common man. Even worse is they no longer understand or take into context the 'books' that they read and think that it is wonderful when some 20th century political hack can't even bother to see if ideas promulgated have been more clearly stated previously.
The first political party to dissolve their Elitist views, reach out to blue-collar, working class and small business America and adjusts its policies to the culture around those populations will gain something very strange in America: a true majority. Not by 'joining factions' but by supporting a common culture and backing it in terms of personal liberty, economic freedom and government becoming accountable and smaller. That must happen to stem the tide of authoritarianism on the Left and Right. And if you hear more about how the two parties are such good things as they are, you will know we are not headed in a good direction. To the Republican Party this has to deal with Theodore Roosevelt, a Progressive from the early 20th century who influenced our common government by putting in an expansive view of federal powers. Teddy Roosevelt hated the guts of conservatives because they were *not* Progressive. His great idea was to remake the Republican Party into a Progressive party and that sure did work on the economic side as Republicans have been unable to swear off the Hamiltonian bottle of government having strong input into the economy ever since. Remember the President that had the Federal Reserve do the exact, wrong, thing in 1929? He did not have a (D) by his name and had this strange organ of government do the exact wrong thing by raising interest rates and cutting cash flow into the economy just as it needed some to retain any confidence in the government by the public. The public had gotten addicted to this, too, and when a non-R got into office he then swelled the size of government, pushed money out the door, and raised taxes... which killed the recovery and extended the Great Depression from 1938 to 1942 and only a war brought it to an end by taking the unemployed and putting them on the battlefield or to work in factories to supply the huge military machine that was necessary to win the conflict.
The Progressives mixed this strange cocktail of Hamiltonian intervention in the economy with more authoritarian government to give the elixir to such sweet folks as the Fascists in Italy and the National Socialists in Germany. They purified that toxic brew, while we have been drinking it down not minding that as we get closer to the bottom of the barrel, the toxins are getting more and more concentrated. Yet 'by the book' Republican Elites don't see this as awful, just going one step too far on the current path at this time... no one is yelling to turn the ideology around and start getting rid of the non-functional parts of government, lower taxes, remove regulations and let the American People decide their own destiny and hold each other accountable for their actions in the economy. That, as it was in 1776, is now a RADICAL NOTION.
Really, what organs of government have these 'by the book' Republicans ever gotten rid of?
Any? The corpse of Ronald Reagan is trotted out, and the moment you hear him mentioned you know you are listening to a necrophiliac, and yet the guts of his political views are still sitting in formaldehyde in a jar in some dank basement at the GOP with a 'toxic' label on it. Strange to say that in the same article as the one I use for TR, I then point to the President who did have the guts to remove a festering, gangrenous organ from the federal government because it was toxic and putting the common man in danger. In the area of economics he not only has the ideas that Ronald Reagan had, that was to remove unnecessary and dangerous parts of government or at least turn them over to the citizenry to control, but actually carried them out. In one, single veto message, President Jackson describes the abuses of power that come with the federal government controlling such an organ as the National Bank, now something we call the Federal Reserve. While the ills suffered, then, were different, the effect on the Nation and the danger that 'control' brings with it are still manifest. He warned of foreign Nations that were hostile to us being able to use their investment to control our National direction. Any similarities between that time and the Fannie and Freddie debt being held by Russia and China is purely intentional, I assure you. While both of these Nations know they might go down with us... I say 'might' as authoritarian regimes able to deploy troops against their own citizenry often feel immune to certain dangers... they would give the US a hard and deep blow and casting our debt worthiness to near zero. And if one of them starts to do that, then the other and all the other investors in federal debt will also start to run to *anything* that seems to have some backing to it.
That is what you get when you allow authoritarian Nations to invest in your economy in large measures.
Works out so well, doesn't it?
Indeed it is getting to the point where the Republican Party now mouths its espousal of the Constitution and limited government and no one trusts them as they have not carried through with that agenda, and even on welfare reform left the door open for the Left to push it back almost completely in one large spending bill that no one bothered to read. The conservative principles of moderate, limited and accountable government have only been espoused, not carried out, and now the Republican Party wonders why no one trusts it?
Will they be the party to throw off their shackles of their Elite, reconnect with the common man and put forward an agenda that will slow this ship and then slowly turn it around to leave the field of icebergs we are in? The last President didn't do that, and actually started the ship going faster. This President now has it full steam ahead to 'avoid' that iceberg by racing in front of it. Just like the Titanic.
The clarion call is not just to stop this insanity, but to start going backwards on this ill-road into the tar pits so that we can get back to limited and sound government that doesn't feel that every home default is a tragedy... one caused by federally mandated regulations.
This future of ours is on the horrific road to State control of the economy in either the National or International Socialist realm: they are both Socialist, authoritarian and no longer see the common man as citizen but ward of the State. That is a very elitist view, this idea that government can be omni-competent. We have seen that there are many organs of government that now go contrary to liberty and freedom, and letting people guide their own destiny.
The Dept. of Education has not changed the reading rate of the US since poor Johnny couldn't read. Yet it gets tens if not hundreds of billions of dollars to intervene at the local level, which changes the course of every public school away from its local environs and to that of the federal government.
The Dept. of Energy has not supported a sound energy policy for the Nation. It has not given us new technologies, techniques or capability to shift to a secure energy future.
The Dept. of Agriculture has had its system of Big Agribusiness payouts abused to the point where the people of the US now pay more than the commodity price for things like sugar. Indeed, people get paid not to grow things on their farms. Now people need only own the farm, put in for their cash and do nothing to make the farm solvent as the federal government will step in to 'help'. This system was also abused to fund ill-conceived schemes and thwart Congressional oversight on the funding to regimes outside the US.
The Dept. of Health and Human Services is a vast bureaucracy for manipulating the medical system of the United States for which we are indebted to it for creating a regime of constantly increasing prices that the citizenry must pay for utilizing it. So much so that the idea is to get the federal government to take over the entire system and give away 'free health care' or so subsidize it that prices will skyrocket as they have done in this subsidized system. We, apparently, cannot learn that subsidies are far worse than letting the price of a good or service set its own, natural cost in a minimally regulated system. How do I know when someone has proposed an ill-conceived notion in the health care arena? They want to federally manage it and subsidize it.
Mind you, no one wants to talk about the ill organ of Social Security which is still on course to bankrupt the Nation and will continue that way until it does. Listening to a 'liberal' talk about this and its great 'social good' also has them ignoring the great social ill that will be done unless the system is scrapped, the people who paid into it given an option for a lump sum distribution or to get whatever was promised them *now* in the future, but no more funds to go into it. That now dwarfs DoD spending by quite a bit, and yet the greatest savings is not to be had at DoD but in Social Security removal from being a festering parasite on our internal organs, starve it of food, and accept its ongoing debt as a governmental problem until the thing passes out of our system. Soon it will BE the system, entire.
Then there are the noxious sub-organs of government that seem to take on a life of their own. EPA now does more than protect the environment, but mandates how it can be used and costs private owners of the use of their land for a nebulous 'greater good' that can now be linked to ill-science and junk science, like global warming. Soon it will try to regulate carbon dioxide emissions and YOU will become a prime source of this 'pollutant' as every breath you breathe out contains it because you are alive.
FEMA was started to help the Nation recover from a nuclear war. Now it is used for things like hurricanes, ice storms and tornado damage... and ill suited to respond to any of them. Yet having a FEMA means that small towns and cities begin to feel they don't have to protect themselves and reduce spending for such things as snow removal in the north east. So now a mild blizzard is a 'natural disaster' because small towns feel that the federal government will make up what they don't pay, locally.
BATFE once had its position to ensure tax collection on stamps for the interstate trade on alcohol and tobacco. This was grown by adding on appendages during and after Prohibition in the strange belief that automatic weapons used by gangsters meant that the rest of the population shouldn't have them. Mind you criminals can still get them, and the public can't, which begins a process of disarming the public against crime. Further laws were put in place on that front and even on alcohol and tobacco there are continued raids for federal reasons even on trade that NEVER leaves the State it was produced in. Yes, small distilleries attached to restaurants cannot sell to you WITHOUT a federal tax stamp on each and every bottle. And they still go after Moonshiners because some people don't like paying federal taxes for out of State alcohol. So much for the interstate commerce limitation on the federal government. Luckily some bright fellow realized that you can't outlaw making weapons, but you can come down hard on certain types of them. So long as it is 'legal' you are fine. And if it isn't and you make it just for yourself and defending your home? So sorry, not allowed.
Once upon a time, you could use whatever medications you wanted without federal approval. The federal government mandated a food and drug purity act so you could know what it was you were buying. That was good! The population started a ready decline in the use of patent medicines and started to reject foods adulterated with all sorts of noxious substances. Then the federal government worried about the 'drug problem' and wanted to restrict the citizen's access to medications. When alcohol went under prohibition it put a turbocharged engine into organized crime, allowing it to purchase weapons out of the range of the ordinary citizen, like those fully automatic weapons mentioned previously. Plus it allowed for organized crime to spread far faster with ill gotten gains from alcohol production and distribution than it ever would have gotten on its own. The problem with removing prohibition is that it did not END organized crime, which now had a major foothold in the black part of the economy. Unfortunately medications grown from plants or made from common industrial chemicals are relatively cheap to make and have an extremely high mark up in the underground economy. We do not know where the natural level of use would be if the population understood the effects of such medications and could self-regulate on them. We do know that when the amount of SUGAR was pointed out in breakfast cereals and the problems it caused publicized, that the public changed its eating habits and demanded healthier products. Unfortunately that can't happen to the underground market for illegal drugs that has the DEA expanding its power to no good end. Now if you grow your own little patch of loco weed to smoke, you are in violation of federal law as there is a 'national black market' and you are impacting the price of it by NOT buying from a pusher or distributor in organized crime.
This brings us to the Dept. of Homeland security which is *not* enforcing the laws, and is being overwhelmed by Mexican drug cartels fueled by US purchasers of black market narcotics, and these cartels and gangs then purchase automatic weapons and start causing a criminal insurgency that has spread into the southwestern US. Here the ability of government to actually do its job and enforce the laws is, strangely, lax: international criminals in organized crime get a free pass while those trying to defend themselves in the US get extreme scrutiny, castigation and are belittled for not trusting the federal government to protect you. Even though it isn't protecting you.
And the Elitist 'by the book Republicans' spouting on about 'free trade' and its lovely things it will do for us?
Taking a vacation, obviously.
For all this money we pour into government, we can not even get basic protection from it at the border which is the JOB of the federal government. Yet many Republicans have been caught with their fannies out mooning the public by ENDORSING those coming to the US illegally. Well it went from that being their only crime to those with a huge rap sheet deciding we were an 'easy mark' to intimidate because we don't enforce our own laws. Yes, the US is an 'easy mark' in this venue of crime, law enforcement and such.
The concept of 'easy mark' has one underlying idea to it: being a sucker, lacking wit to do the right thing, being gullible and naive.
There is a need for some party or political organization to step out of the clouds as they are no longer walking on firm ground. When some of the rock bottom basics of defending the Nation and supporting her warfighters is not done then the way refer to these Nations is usually in the past tense. That is where the Elitism of the sucker 'by the book' Republicans who can't place a foot down for anything is headed - right down the same fascistic path as the Democrats want. That path is coming to no good end, and quickly. At some point the next step in the clouds will be off the edge of a cliff and America will soon be known in the past tense. Just like the Fascists, Nazis and Soviet Communists... and the once great British Empire, Roman Empire, Egyptian Empire and the late Bronze Age City States. Notice that almost all of those were command structure governments? That is where they end up. America was meant to be different, and yet the same old books are now getting us down the same old path.
In case you missed it.