Sunday, October 18, 2009
Progressivism: How Many Steps Forward This Time?
When English philosopher John Locke, who greatly influenced America’s Founding Fathers, claimed that mixing our labor with what was formerly common property gave us the right to now call that property our own, he both reaffirmed the Protestant work ethic and provided a philosophical defense of private property rights.
Writing of the rights affirmed by the English [“Glorious”] Revolution of 1688, Locke focused on three: “life, liberty, and the right to own private property.” Jefferson in the Declaration of Independence famously broadened the scope of the third to the more comprehensive “pursuit of happiness.”
For Locke, it was to secure and protect private property rights that governments were formed. Even the rights to life and liberty, for him, sprang from the property rights that we have to our own body and our own person.
That we have these rights not from government but from our Creator was obvious to Locke and the Founding Fathers. As such they were inalienable [“unalienable” was a printer’s typo]. While an alien is separated from his or her homeland, these rights could not be separated from us, not even by government.
When Barack Obama claimed that it was effectively his goal and that of his administration to fundamentally remake America, he did so from the standpoint of Progressivism, a loosely constructed conglomerate of political philosophies which share in common a rejection of the view of our nation’s founding documents as given above.
Influenced by the German philosopher Hegel’s view that the entirety of human history is in a constant state of flux and development, Progressivism views them not as incorporating timeless and invariable truths concerning fundamental human rights and government’s role in protecting them, but as anachronistic documents, culturally bound to their own time and circumstances, inadequate for contemporary challenges.
President Wilson, a Progressive pioneer, suggested applying a Darwinian metaphor to the Constitution: Like an evolving species it needs to adapt to its environment to meet contemporary needs. It is a living, not a static, document.
According to Ronald J. Restritto in an article entitled “The Birth of the Administrative State,” it was President Woodrow Wilson who first suggested a way to free American government from the checks and balances placed on it in the Constitution and pave the way for Progressive reforms: vest more and more real power in the hands of unelected administrators.
He seems to have genuinely held what strikes many as an incredibly naïve belief, namely that administrators who were experts in their own fields, would somehow be above politics and so interested in devoting themselves to serving the needs of the citizenry that checks and balances on their actions would be unnecessary.
Whether Barack Obama accepts Wilson’s view, he seems to have learned its lesson well. In appointing one unelected Czar after another to positions of overriding authority in his administration, he has engineered countless end runs around Constitutional safeguards.
While Locke believed that governments should be instituted for the protection of individual rights and liberties, Progressivism has from its inception loathed individualism and its political expression in our founding documents. In “The Meaning of ‘Progressive’ Politics” Barry Loberfeld quotes Herbert Croly, a Progressive writer, as saying that, "The Promise of American Life is to be fulfilled ... by a large measure of individual subordination and self-denial."
Reading this, one is reminded of Barack Obama’s response to a question from an NBC News reporter on why he thought his proposal for a government takeover of the health care system had aroused such widespread antipathy. As Obama put it: "It's an argument that's gone on for the history of this republic, and that is, What's the right role of government? How do we balance freedom with our need to look out for one another? ... This is not a new argument, and it always evokes passions."
No wonder the great concern of center right Constitutional Originalists is that the Obama Administration, with its unchecked Czars, unwavering Congressional support for a large and invasive government – and admitted quest to “balance freedom” -- seems to think that it can advance Progressive reforms in far more than merely incremental ways. And if it does, it may finally be able to tip the balance that remakes America into a Socialist state once and for all.
No apology for the lies about Rush Limbaugh
There will be no voluntary mea culpas from Rush's race slanderers despite the irrefutable fact that they spread poisonous and damaging lies with actual malice. To the left, Rush is the most prominent face of conservatism and the most influential opponent of President Barack Obama's destructive agenda and so must be stopped -- irrespective of the despicable means employed.
The left systematically destroyed President George W. Bush with the most egregious lies, repeated to the point that people who knew better even began to believe them. The formerly respected CBS News anchor Dan Rather was so convinced by his liberal bias that Bush was evil that he refused to apologize for slandering him with a story later proved to be manufactured -- and that's giving Rather the benefit of the doubt that he was unaware the story was fabricated from the get-go. To Rather, it didn't matter because he was convinced Bush possessed the character of someone who would have engaged in the acts of which he was falsely accused.
And what was it about Bush that led Rather to the conclusion that he possessed such low character? In Rather's eyes -- though many conservatives would strongly dispute this -- he was a conservative and conservatives are evil.
The parallel with Rush's leftist slanderers is striking. It's one of the first things that occurred to me as I heard their sniveling responses, one by one refusing to utter a syllable of apology and instead using the occasion of being caught red-handed in malicious lies as a further opportunity to reiterate their libel.
"How dare you suggest that we have done anything wrong in attributing statements to Rush he never uttered? Even if he didn't say those words, you know he was thinking them or something much worse."
On what basis do they make such preposterous statements? Purely and simply for the reason that Rush is an unabashed conservative and unabashed conservatives are presumptively racist.
There isn't an ounce of fairness in these deliberate bearers of false witness or their supporters. If the supporters were just slightly honorable, at the very least they would condemn the slanderers for their indefensible tortuous utterances. They wouldn't even have to say one word in defense of the super patriot they loathe; just call to the carpet the brutish verbal thuggery of their ideological soul mates.
Many outraged Rush fans are directing their ire at Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson, but I would argue that this is an inefficient allocation of their righteous indignation.
These two household name-level, race-hustling opportunists have no credibility, including with the mainstream media and other liberal prostitutes who continue to aid and abet their shenanigans, such as this one. It's a pact of mutual convenience. The liberals know full well that few on the right have the moral courage to oppose their mischief for fear of being labeled racists themselves. So they shamelessly prop them up to enable them to agitate racial disharmony and deliver race-oriented votes to the Democratic Party.
So please direct your angst not at these direct agents of racial toxicity, but at their leftist enablers in the media, the Democratic Party and the government -- those who not only empower these hate-spewing mouthpieces but also participate in the poison by issuing such destructive lies as "a vote for a Republican is a vote for another church to burn" and "President Bush left poor blacks on the rooftops in New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina because Republicans don't care about blacks."
While you're at it, please reserve just a smidgeon of your outrage or disgust for those lukewarm conservatives who contribute to the destruction of race relations and to the advancement of liberal causes by pandering to false characterizations of authentic conservatives, such as Rush, who aren't afraid to stand up for the truth, even when it will subject them to virulently fraudulent charges of racism or other slanders.
If any of you are sufficiently naive to believe this NFL incident is merely about Rush, you have a rude awakening in store. The left is on the march -- the march to isolate, stigmatize, demonize, discredit and ultimately silence those who stand in their way. If you haven't read up on the plans of Obama's Federal Communications Commission czar to shut down talk radio or if you aren't following the tyrannical workings of the administration in trying to cram down unpopular legislation without a shred of transparency, then you'll eventually witness the lengths to which these people will go -- as illustrated here.
At the risk of sounding trite, we are at a crossroads in this country, and the left is proving each day how ruthlessly unprincipled it will be in advancing its goal of fundamentally changing this nation.
I pray and honestly trust that conservatives will be emboldened, not cowered, by this nasty, sordid turn of events.
Breitbart points out that there are various NFL owners who have ACTUALLY said worse things than Rush was ALLEGED to have said -- with no repercussions on them.
The US economy: inflation, deflation, stagflation - which one will it be? :Assuming that Obama adheres to his present course then there is every possibility that the monetary dam that Bernanke constructed will eventually flood the banking system and generate surging inflation, sending the dollar into free fall and leaving Americans struggling with stagflation
Getting it right on the asset boom and the recession:The asset boom is being blamed on excess liquidity. If only, so it is argued, we can maintain monetary equilibrium then all will be well. This is the kind of dangerous thinking that got the world into this awful financial mess in the first place
Consumer spending, taxes and the US recession : Obama and his leftwing cronies are intent on loading the US economy down with a tidal wave of tax increases - including grossly irresponsible taxes on energy, huge deficits, colossal increases in spending plus a massive expansion of government. That these policies amount to an anti-growth program that will have dire consequences for future living standards has yet to sink into the collective mind of the American public
How the vast right wing conspiracy really works : Obama and his leftwing cronies are intent on loading the US economy down with a tidal wave of tax increases - including grossly irresponsible taxes on energy, huge deficits, colossal increases in spending plus a massive expansion of government. That these policies amount to an anti-growth program that will have dire consequences for future living standards has yet to sink into the collective mind of the American public
The government does not create wealth; it merely redistributes tax money received :We live under a system where virtually nothing is beyond the reach of the national government so more and more of the income of working Americans and businesses must be confiscated to support the expanded range of government activities
Commies, Fascists and Perverts, Oh My!:Obama's is drawing many of his appointees from a political and moral cesspit. One such appointee is Kevin Jennings, an ardent supporter of the North American Man-Boy Love Association. This organization demands to be allowed to sexually prey on young boys. So why is Obama appointing these creeps?
Jewish self-haters or victims? : Obama and his leftwing cronies are intent on loading the US economy down with a tidal wave of tax increases - including grossly irresponsible taxes on energy, huge deficits, colossal increases in spending plus a massive expansion of government. That these policies amount to an anti-growth program that will have dire consequences for future living standards has yet to sink into the collective mind of the American public
Obama from Kenya, archived report says: "An archived article from 2004 on Barack Obama's run for the U.S. Senate in Illinois describes the relative political newcomer as "Kenyan-born," providing further fuel for speculation over the president's eligibilty for office. WND has noted various news reports that have either stated or implied Obama's birthplace is not Hawaii, as he has claimed, but Africa. The issue is significant, since there are a number of lawsuits challenging Obama's eligibility that argue if he was not born in the U.S., he does not meet the requirement in the Constitution that the president be a "natural born" citizen. WND further has reported on the disagreement among those documenting Obama's presidency over which Hawaii hospital was his birth place. Now have come a flood of blog questions and e-mails regarding the apparently archived article from the Sunday Standard in Kenya. The report starts out, "Kenyan-born US Senate hopeful, Barrack (sic) Obama, appeared set to take over the Illinois Senate seat after his main rival, Jack Ryan, dropped out of the race on Friday night amid a furor over lurid sex club allegations."
Official: Obama 'disgusted' with Israel: "U.S. officials in recent days expressed to the Palestinian Authority that President Obama's administration is "disgusted" with Israel, a top aide to PA President Mahmoud Abbas told WND in an interview. Nimr Hamad said the White House was disgusted that Israel is refusing to halt all settlement activity as a precondition for re-starting talks with the PA over the creation of a Palestinian state. "Settlement activity" refers to Jewish construction in the West Bank and eastern sections of Jerusalem. Hamad repeated that the term "disgusted" was used more than once in recent meetings with U.S. envoys to describe the administration's attitude toward Israel. Hamad did not name the U.S. envoys using the terminology."
Obama has love-in with George Bush senior: "A day after telling supporters in San Francisco that he was cleaning up a mess left for him by former President George W. Bush, President Obama came to his predecessor's adopted home state Friday to honor his father, former President George H.W. Bush, for his public service. Mr. Obama arrived deep in enemy political territory to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Mr. Bush's inaugural address and call to action that led to the creation of the Points of Light Institute, the nation's largest volunteer-management and civic organization. The president lauded the 41st commander-in-chief, who is now 85 years old, for being a leader "who promoted the ethic of service long before it was fashionable," and for choosing a life of service over "a life of comfort and privilege." The president, who was born more than a decade after Mr. Bush fought as a Navy pilot in World War II, cited Mr. Bush's wartime sacrifices to hammer home the point. "If President Bush could fly 58 combat missions when he was younger than many of you here today, and keep on fighting even after he was shot down and nearly captured by the enemy, then surely you can keep going when your service project gets a little tough," Mr. Obama said at the campus that's home to Mr. Bush's presidential library."
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The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialist) and the full name of Hitler's political party (translated) was "The National Socialist German Workers' Party" (In German: Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei)
Posted by JR at 1:38 AM