Category Archives: socialist

All Your Children Are Belong To Us

A lot has been made of Melissa Harris-Perry’s MSNBC Lean Forwardcommercial where she declares that “we need to break through our private idea that kids belong to their parents and families” and we need to “recognize that kids belong to whole communities”.

 

According Mrs. Harris-Perry, once we recognize the collective ownership of the children in our community, we’ll begin making better investments in public education. It’s great that it has been brought to the forefront of public discussion but my biggest issue with the discussion is “where has everyone been?” All she’s done is verbalize what’s been going on globally with our children for decades and in the United States at least since the mid-nineties. Make no mistake; this is a Common Core Public Education announcement more than an MSNBC promo for her show. And it sounded the bell for the final chapter in Marx’s ten point plan in the Communist Manifesto – literally the tenth point.

“10. Free education for all children in public schools. Abolition of children’s factory labour in its present form. Combination of education with industrial production, &c, &c.” (Emphasis added).

And so our free education is brought to you by, with your tax dollars, The Federal Government, Microsoft, General Electric and countless other “industrial producers” that have a vested interest in seeing that your children understand the world as the future they invision and not the God centered family centric individualism you think you have a right to instill upon them. The Melissa Harris-Perry video makes it fairly clear – you may be the baby producer, but the children belong to the community. And the community believes in education as a collective social process where everyone learns from the same exams and believes in the same social order.

You may be teaching God’s justice or equal justice at home but your children are being taught social justice at school. You may teach your children about the second amendment right to bear arms, as the Founders intended, but your children are being taught that guns are the problem with our society – not the lack of faith in God. You may teach your children that salvation is personal, that your salvation is between you and your God. Your children are learning about collective salvation. You don’t believe in global warming? Wait a couple of years and your children will be laughing at your “ignorance”. Evolution. LGBT. Abstinence. Every year my son spent in the Chicago Public School System was a year I spent trying to “un-teach” what he was learning at school until I finally just pulled him out and put him in a Christian School. And I fear that will not be an option with tomorrow’s “community” children. And I fear that option will disappear sooner than you may think.

While we’re focusing on the mostly federally centered Common Core program and whether or not states will reserve the right to maintain their sovereignty with regards to education, we need to keep an eye squarely focused Romeiki v. Holder case. This case will be the sole focus of my next post but the implications of this case the way I understand it and the very fact that the Justice Department finds it necessary to pursue it should be factored into every Federal Education program discussion – whether called Common Core, Race To the Top or No Child Left behind. It’s a case involving a German evangelical family who was granted political asylum in the United States from Germany because they were about to have their children taken away from them for homeschooling them versus Germany’s compulsory education system. Apparently, in Germany the children’s education has belonged to the community since 1938 and our Justice Department feels the need to spend the time and expense getting this family’s children back to their community. Who was running Germany in 1938?

For those of you needing a refresher on Karl Marx’s “Communist Manifesto”, I’ve taken the liberty of presenting an excerpt of some paragraphs that were relevant to Mrs. Harris-Perry’s video. I can’t help that his writing is as painful to read as Mrs. Harris-Parry’s video is painful to watch. Remember, both personalities start with hatred and envy as the foundation of their worldview.

“Abolition [Aufhebung] of the family! Even the most radical flare up at this infamous proposal of the Communists. On what foundation is the present family, the bourgeois family, based? On capital, on private gain. In its completely developed form, this family exists only among the bourgeoisie. But this state of things finds its complement in the practical absence of the family among the proletarians, and in public prostitution.

The bourgeois family will vanish as a matter of course when its complement vanishes, and both will vanish with the vanishing of capital. Do you charge us with wanting to stop the exploitation of children by their parents? To this crime we plead guilty. But, you say, we destroy the most hallowed of relations, when we replace home education by social.

And your education! Is not that also social, and determined by the social conditions under which you educate, by the intervention direct or indirect, of society, by means of schools, &c.? The Communists have not invented the intervention of society in education; they do but seek to alter the character of that intervention, and to rescue education from the influence of the ruling class.

The bourgeois clap-trap about the family and education, about the hallowed co-relation of parents and child, becomes all the more disgusting, the more, by the action of Modern Industry, all the family ties among the proletarians are torn asunder, and their children transformed into simple articles of commerce and instruments of labour.”

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Socialist-NO; Big, Obtrusive Government Adocate-YES

By W.C. Augustine
A friend who most often sees political issues differently than I recently sent me an excerpt from an articlein Daily Finance with the subject line “not bad for a socialist”.  The article said Fortune 500 companies’ profits increased 16.4% over last year and exceeded “the roaring economy” of 2006. (interesting the left was not describing it such in that year’s midterm elections)

I presume he saw the article as evidence that President Obama is not a socialist. To be clear, I believe it is a mistake to allege Obama is a socialist as it is counter productive.  The last generation outputted from the state-controlled school system does not know the meaning of the word.  Describing the President as an advocate of big, obtrusive government is descriptive with more impact.

 Socialism is defined  as an economic system in which the state has ownership or control over the means of production.   Control can be acquired through regulation, taxation, public ridicule or other bullying tactics (think Boeing) without ownership (think GM).  National Socialists (the real name rather than the acronym) found control more effective than ownership.  Without outright ownership a scapegoat is available for politicians to lay blame for problems. Government ownership of BP, in which  he was the top recipient of BP PAC and individual money  over the past 20 years, would have hampered Obama’s ability to lay blame on the company for the oil spill.

Early in the last century businesses became successful by developing products consumers wanted and then making it efficiently.  Later in the century marketing the product became as important as innovation and cost control.  Today a large company ignores pandering to government at its own peril.

According to a study  political activity typically results in a 20% increase in a company’s performance.  Another look at firms doing intensive lobbying shows they have returns much in excess of the S&P.  Think of Microsoft’s change after a hands-off-politicians policy precipitated an anti-trust investigation.

A superficial observer may say the evidence only suggests large corporations are buying government favors.  True, they are, but at what expense and at what competitive disadvantage does that place the small business owner who can not curry sufficient favor?  The favors and payoffs are mutual-think paying the piper.

Does Ma and Pa Heating and Cooling get to keep tax loss carry-forward after their creditors write off debt as General Motors was allowed?  Does the small company receive the tax breaks of General Electric?

Large companies can spread government regulatory burdens over huge sale volumes and still keep overhead under control.  Small companies can not.  A fortune 500 company is more than happy to relinquish some control to the government in return for the government giving them a competitive advantage in addition to the protection of a bailout to recover from mismanagement.  Hence small businesses are caught between large companies’ gained advantages in collusion with the government and a government that through huge deficits usurps more capital from entrepreneurs.

When Democrats seek a way to pay for reducing the interest on student loans,they don’t look to big corporations, their high paid executives, trust funds or highly paid entertainers and athletes, they go after small business via their common organizational structure, S-Corps.   Many in the media are ever available to carry the left’s message such as the Tribune’s Lisa Mascaro whose disparaging use of the adjective “so-called” preceding S-Corps bears her tilt.

Given that 70% of new jobs come from small companies, government putting them at a competitive disadvantage does not grow the economy, but gives government more control over the economy, enhancing the growth of a big obtrusive government.

Have a fulfilling and profitable day,

W C (Bill) Augustine,  www.atlasrising.tateauthor.com

Social Capitalism

I have struggled for two weeks to get this posting out. Even as I write, I cannot reconcile exactly where I should stand on the issue of supporting businesses that absolutely offend my sensibilities as a consumer. The genesis of this posting began when I read about all of the companies that pulled their advertising from the Rush Limbaugh Show. I am not here to defend or support what Rush Limbaugh said,  (he can do that himself), only that he has the right to say whatever he wants. What struck me as appalling was the speed and efficiency in which the left was able to mobilize to bring Rush down. We all know, or should know, the progressives have entire organizations dedicated to listening to conservative voices, waiting for the perfect moment to be offended so that they can snuff out free speech they disagree with.

I must say that I was quite awestruck by the fact that a minority of people, 20% liberal if we go by the latest Gallup survey I could find, could force companies into action despite the fact that 42% of Americans identify themselves as conservatives in that same poll. (Apparently 38% of the people have no idea what they believe in, will not take a stand and they’re called moderates.) With self-righteous indignation I was angered by the fact that companies like Carbonite and ProFlowers.com would acquiesce so quickly to such a small group of people and while I don’t have the purchasing demographics for these companies, I almost have to believe that there are more people purchasing their products and services on the recommendation from a Beck or a Limbaugh or a Levine than the left could ever muster up the support for. (Full disclosure: I tried Carbonite based on one of these recommendations – it didn’t work for me – and I give my wife a box of Sheri’s Berries, a subsidiary of Provide Service which owns ProFlowers, every year, again based on one of these recommendations.)

The original intent of this posting was to point out the fact that these 26 or 27 companies had made a choice. In the name of social Marxism, they would cave to this small but highly vocal group despite the fact that people that label themselves as conservatives are the actual majority of the population. I intended to point out the fact that they could get away with this because we, as conservatives wouldn’t do a damned thing about it. This was going to be a rallying call to all conservatives that believe in the free markets and our freedom of speech to get out there and vote with your purchasing power and call these companies up and let them know that you will not do business with a company that has zero regard for you and what you believe in. All I needed was a few days to think about the best way to articulate how we can make a real difference by supporting other businesses that care about all of their customers. We would take on the defense of our causes by employing the lefts’ tactics. Saul Alinsky would not be remembered if his tactics did not work. And then the wheels started falling off in my thinking….

I believe in capitalism. Not the crony-capitalism of the General Electric / General Motors variety, but true free market capitalism. And while I stand firm on what I’ve previously mentioned, I can’t say that I’m for using the progressive tactic of calling for boycotts every time I disagree with someone. (Note: To be fair, I just found out that some conservatives are also looking at the tactic in the research of this article.) I’m not even sure how effective boycotts are, when they’re actually implemented. Off of the top of my head I do not recall hearing of a boycott that was truly effective in hurting a business’s bottom line. But then again, it’s hard to measure the effectiveness of what a boycott can actually do when any group of fifty people can call, claim they were offended, threaten a boycott and meet their goal of suppressing freedom of speech in the name of tolerance. (Don’t spend too much time thinking about that last sentence; it’s mind numbing when you do.)

However I do believe in personal responsibility when it comes to making purchasing choices but even this has significant downside. I pride myself for the fact that I refuse to pay money to HBO because of what Bill Maher spews out about people – specifically conservative women and people of faith. He has the right to be on cable and say whatever he wants and I have the right not to support the company that supports him. It is hard for me to understand why anyone that calls themselves conservative would pay HBO for their services so that HBO can pay Bill Maher for his services so that Bill Maher can donate one million dollars to a progressive super-PAC. This is an easy case for me to make because there are several choices out there for watching movies and while I do have some movie channels, I rarely watch movies anyway.

What about products this author really likes? I’ll apply the same logic to ice cream. Ben and Jerry’s has some of the best flavors put in pints and they’re everywhere and easy to get. But according to an ABC News story, founders Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield are giving money to the Resource Movement Group, a group designed to fund this year’s Occupy Wall Street protests. Their website openly supports everything I’m against. Using the same argument as delivered in the previous paragraph, every time I purchase a pint of Ben and Jerry’s, I’m paying Ben and Jerry to support and advertise for the OWS movement. So much for “Pistachio Pistachio” and “Everything But The…”. The argument for voting with your wallet remains as sound as ever but the practical application of that argument can be very difficult when the purchasers’ choice is to accept a product of lesser quality. I apologize in advance to the fans of Haagen-Dazs. I made the switch but they’re really not the same.

I’ve “war gamed” these issues with several different people over the past couple of weeks and the conversations ranged from, “whatever we do doesn’t make a difference anyway” to “well, if you’re going to stop buying Ben and Jerry’s, you should stop buying Unilever products as well since they own them”. If this is the case, I’ll need more time to get rid of my Lipton iced tea. I really don’t know what the “answer” is. My next jeans purchase will not be Levi’s. My next pint of ice cream will not be Ben and Jerry’s. My wife will get something that’s not Sheri’s Berries next Valentines Day. But is it even possible to stop doing business with every single company that pulled their advertising from the Rush Limbaugh show to make the point that we are the majority and respect the freedom of ideas – even if we don’t always agree with those ideas?

20% of the population has figured out a way to set the agenda for the entire country. They set the tone and decide what the rest of the country is allowed to say and how they are to say it. I read somewhere that Vladimir Lenin was able kick off the Russian Revolution with 10% of the population. We might want to figure this one out.

Authors Note: In my research for this posting I read a little about the history of Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream. It is one of the greatest capitalism stories I have ever read all the way to the point that they even won the title of U.S. Small Business Persons of the Year, awarded by President Regan. And yet they support the anti-capitalist movement. Figure that one out.

Greece – The Canary in the Coal Mine

By now, just about everyone is aware that Greece has issues. But what’s a bit appalling is how little we know about what is really happening with that country. The knowledge most people have boiled down to two points; Greece has run out of money and the people there are rioting in the streets. However if one digs a little deeper, you’ll realize that Greece is essentially no longer a sovereign country – it is a country led by a technocrat and more or less owned by the EU and ECB. Before I get into the implications of what that means, let’s first go through the brief history of how Greece got to where it is today.

Between 1999 and 2008, Greece’s real GDP was hovering between 3-4% while their debt percentage hovered in and around 100% until 2008 where it stood at 113% during the global recession. In 2009, the newly elected Prime Minister George Papandreou came into office and soon after revises the country’s budget projections, indicating the government had been understating its deficit for years. That year Greece’s debt percentage shot to 129% and is currently standing at 173% projected. After several credit downgrades in 2009 and 2010, Papandreou agrees to implement harsh austerity measures in exchange for $152 billion in loans from the European Union and the IMF. Riots ensue as the Greek population does not want to give up anything. Despite Greece meeting the austerity requirements of 2010, credit ratings continue to be downgraded so Greece pushes through another set of highly unpopular austerity measures June 2011 to qualify for a second bailout package for $157 billion in loans. Shortly after this, the Greek parliament agrees to new highly unpopular taxes, cutting public sector jobs, decreasing public sector wages, decreasing pensions for high-income workers and scaling back collective bargaining rights.

In addition to this very brief recent history, it is also important to note how Greece got to this point in the first place. Ironically, it began 30 years ago Papandreou’s father Andreas began building an unsustainable civil service in order to continue winning elections. Additionally, Greece had spent the last few decades erecting social safety nets producing cradle to grave benefits such as government healthcare, a generous welfare system and a retirement age of 61, (social security). In fact, the entitlement mentality is so firmly entrenched in Greek society, the population there does not understand anything else and seems perfectly willing to give up its’ national sovereignty while devolving into a cesspool of pain and misery grasping at the last reed it can find while drowning. And because they have no basis for understanding true freedom and liberty, they are willing to live through the degradation of their country in the hopes that things might magically get better. Here are a few of the things that are going on in Greece that are getting very little press in the US.

  • After the collapse of the socialist party in November 2011, an interim prime minister, Lucas Papademos was sworn in to lead Greece through the economic crisis. Papademos is a technocrat and was previously vice president of the European Central Bank. (Could you imagine Ben Bernanke being sworn in as interim President?)
  • Having lost its fiscal independence, Greece is now required have the permanent presence of a Eurogroup Task Force with strong onsite monitoring capabilities. (In other words, it’s their money and they have the right to manage their money. Who owns the bulk of the US debt?)
  • This EU presence will ensure that state revenues will flow into a segregated escrow account for state revenues.
  • The Greek constitution will be amended to ensure that priority will be given to serving debt payments. This includes the right for European banks to seize Greece’s gold reserves, 111.6 tons.
  • Public sector salary cuts are so deep and because they are retroactive to November 2011, up to 64,000 workers will have to work without salary for a month and some may even be asked to return money.

There is far more to the Grecian condition than what I can post in this blog but the point is obvious. Greece’s socialistic experiment has been a complete and utter failure and from a practical perspective, they are no longer a sovereign country. And despite all of this, Greece is virtually assured to default anyway, only now with zero gold reserves.

Socially, the Greeks are feeling completely hopeless and are turning bitter towards the EU and specifically Germany. There are riots and lootings in the streets. Well dressed Greeks have been reported rummaging through the garbage for food. Clinics that were set up to service the immigration population in Greece have seen a 22% jump in the domestic population. And still, they’re clinging on to an idea that didn’t work – hoping against hope that it will all just go away

Understanding what is happening in Greece is essential when looking at our current economic situation. From a GDP perspective, the US is in a worse economic condition than Greece but we have the ability to print money. However, eventually every country will have to pay back the debt that they owe and Greece gives us a better understanding of what can happen when we fail to make the tough choices today. We cannot afford our current social programs and Obamacare begins to hit its stride in full in 2013. That means higher taxes and still more debt. Despite what’s lacking in our current healthcare system, Obamacare literally means the destruction of economy.

We have an opportunity this year to elect real leaders that will face our issues head-on. We need to repeal the healthcare bill and we need to seriously manage the scaling back of all of our social programs – social security, Medicare, food stamps, etc. We either face up to our issues with honesty and determination, or we will wake up one day and realize our country isn’t even ours anymore.

Mitch McConnell plays “Charlie Brown” on Washington Stage

According to an article in the Chicago Tribune, a compromise proposal crafted by Senate Majority leader Harry Reid and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell is likely to come before the Senate for a vote this week. Under this compromise plan designed to increase the debt limit before the August 2 deadline, the President would be given the authority to raise the debt limit three times for a total increase of $2.5 trillion without Congressional approval,  in exchange for a series of budget cuts that would reduce the budget $2.5 trillion over the next ten years.

In this scenario, Mitch McConnell plays the role of the Peanuts cartoon character, “Charlie Brown” and Harry Reid plays the role of “Lucy” holding the football. The budget reductions promised over the next ten years are reminiscent of the character “Wimpy” in the old Popeye comic strip as he tells the counterman at the local diner, “I will gladly pay you Tuesday for a hamburger today”. Taking into account that the Tribune is a part of the MSM and this article comes out of their Washington News Bureau, the quotes of some conservative Republicans in Congress concerning the possibility of a last minute compromise is somewhat disconcerting.

It seems the Republican Leadership in Washington does not yet realize just how determined its conservative base is in taking back their country. By the same token, a large percentage of conservatives throughout the country do not yet realize that we are in the midst of a war between the socialists inside our government and the constitutional conservatives that make up a large part of the patriot or “tea party” movement. This war has been going on for the past 130 years and has now reached the critical stage. Make no mistake, this is a war with one side, the socialists or progressives, determined to destroy America, as we know it. Their goal is to destroy republicanism, capitalism, conservatism, the American culture and the U.S. Constitution. On the other side, the constitutional conservatives’ goal is to destroy socialism, purging it from the power structure of government and restoring the republican form of government designed by the Founders in the Constitution.

I was eleven years old when World War II ended. I did not understand at the time all the details behind the war but the one thing that made a lasting impression on me that I have never forgotten is the spirit of patriotism that permeated American society. No one would even think of compromising with the Axis Powers; the goal was to defeat them, totally and completely. The socialist in America have always understood the nature of the conflict we are engaged in and have been persistent and relentless in their attacks on the institutions of our government and culture. Conservative patriots have been on the defensive since the beginning of the socialist movement in the last quarter of the nineteenth century.

In the twentieth century, the socialist seemed to have lost most of the battles fought at the ballot box, in the courts and in the halls of Washington. Conservatives were content to defend their positions policy by policy with every contest ending in a compromise giving the socialists a little more ground. We are beginning to understand that compromise with socialists is simply another name for surrender.

For their part, the socialists never concede defeat. They simply accept the compromise and move forward to the next battle while the conservatives return to the mundane world of daily life. For example, universal, state-run health care has been a goal of socialism since the 1854 Bill for the Indigent Insane, vetoed by President Franklin Pierce because the Constitution does not give Congress the power to pass national welfare legislation. The push for universal health care was taken up again by President Theodore Roosevelt in the election campaign of 1912. Roosevelt was defeated and the issue lay dormant until revived by Franklin Roosevelt. The first bill for social security included publicly funded health care programs, but Roosevelt was forced to remove them from the Social Security legislation in 1935 while he sold Social Security to the American people as “insurance” and to the courts as a “tax”.

Socialists refused to accept these expressions of the American people’s will and kept on fighting for universal health care which they finally succeeded in getting passed into law, piece by piece, beginning with Medicare and Medicaid in 1965 and culminating in the health care bill, “Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act” passed by the Progressive Democrats led by Barack Obama in 2010. The hundred-year socialist vs. conservative contest over universal health care showcases the nature of the ongoing war for the future of America we are now engaged in.

As Israel has been demonstrating for the past fifty years, you cannot compromise with those who are determined to destroy you. In doing so, you merely let the enemy off the hook so they can regroup and return, even stronger, and as determined as ever in their mission of destruction. America cannot afford to compromise on the upcoming debt crisis. The Reid-McConnell compromise only assures that our national debt climbs to 17 trillion dollars in the short term, and the continuation of massive deficit spending in the long term.

America is not Soviet Russia or Communist China. Five-year and ten-year plans are meaningless in American politics because promises of future actions by Congress are binding only on the sitting Congress that makes the promise. They are not binding on future Congresses. The 112th Congress can plan and promise anything. The 113th Congress can do as they please because those promises are not binding on them. The only way we are going to return to fiscal stability and a thriving economy is to simply say NO to more debt, take the consequences and start over. That may mean short-term hardships for many but it will save the country for future generations.

It’s Time To Retire Both Political Parties

The Democratic Party has been in existence since 1825; the Republican Party since 1854. Both have failed the Country miserably.  Perhaps the time has come when we should think about abolishing both parties and establishing a new method for selecting candidates for elective office.

Conventional wisdom among conservatives is that we need to take over the Republican Party and regain control of Congress in the next two elections. That is not something we need do, it is something we absolutely must do if we are to have any hope of changing the direction the country is going.

Assuming though, that we are successful in returning Congress to Republican control in November, and assuming we are also successful in returning the Republican Party to the control of conservatives, then what? Is there any logical reason for continuing to give conservative support to it in the future? Political parties are a lot like service businesses, only with voters instead of customers. The service it provides to the public is finding and publicizing candidates for office. Conservatives have, for generations, given their time and money to the Republican Party with the expectation that its candidates, once in office, would enact legislation designed to protect our liberty and defend our Constitution and way of life. What person, in his or her right mind would continue supporting a business that never delivered the service it had agreed to provide?

Who would patronize an airline that never took them to the destination their ticket called for? Who would continue to employ a security firm to protect their business if thefts kept increasing year after year? That is exactly what we are doing with the Republican Party. Conservatives keep volunteering their time and donating their money, yet they never get what they work for and pay for. We have been conditioned to believe that strong political parties are necessary for the functioning of government. That may be true — but, we need to reexamine that assumption and, at a minimum, rethink what it is that we want our political parties to do for us.

There is no legitimate reason, based on our Constitution and founding documents, for allowing political parties to exercise the amount of power they have today over our government and the choice of leadership we have as citizens. When the Founders were designing our government with its balance of power, they designed it to balance the powers between the different branches of the federal government and between the federal government and the states. They did not and could not have envisioned that the stability of our nation and the security of our liberties would depend on a balance of power between two political parties.

For diagrams depicting the differences between the government established in 1989 and the government existing today see here and here.

The power of political parties has increased concurrently with the decline of federalism in our national government. The founders did not establish the United States as a consolidated “nation state”. The federal government was established by the Declaration of Independence as a federation of nation states, primarily for the purpose of mutual defense and international relations. The nature of the United States is described by Thomas Jefferson in the final paragraph of the Declaration.

“…These united colonies are and, of right ought to be free and independent States;…that as free and independent States, they have full power to levy war, conclude peace, contract alliances, establish commerce, and to do all other acts and things which independent States may of right do.”

This is the last occurrence of the word “colonies” in the official documents of the U.S. From that time forward, citizens of the various states considered their state to be their “country”. Whenever the word “country” appears in the personal writings of that era, it almost always refers to an individual state, rarely to the “United States” as a whole. The Declaration declares the states, in their individual capacity, to be free, independent, sovereign nation states, equal to any other nation state such as Spain, Great Britain, Germany, Poland, etc. It does not present them merely as parts of a larger consolidated “nation state”. Later governing documents, based on the Declaration of Independence does not change the fundamental nature of the states described in the Declaration. The essential and fundamental nature of the states in their declaration of independence, and in their successive governing documents is state sovereignty and independence.

Recognizing the shared threats to the individual states posed by other nations, and the common interest of the states in a few other issues, they organized an “umbrella” government for the common defense and certain other matters of common necessity. The Articles of Confederation, ratified by the states in 1781 describes this federation as,

…“A firm league of friendship with each other, for their common defense, the security of their liberties, and their mutual and general welfare, binding themselves to assist each other, against all force offered to, or attacks made upon them, or any of them, on account of religion, sovereignty, trade, or any other pretense whatever.” (Article III)

To preclude any attempts by the Federation to impinge on the individual sovereignty of the various states, they included this statement in Article II:

“Each state retains its sovereignty, freedom and independence, and every power, jurisdiction, and right, which is not by this Confederation expressly delegated to the United States, in Congress assembled.”

With the Articles of Confederation the states relinquished a small portion of their sovereignty to the “umbrella” government, namely, the powers of war and peace and the unfettered right to form alliances. All other powers were retained by the states.

Our second governing document, the Constitution of the United States, did not alter the fundamental sovereign nature of the states. The only additional sovereignty, of any consequence, relinquished to the federal government was the power to directly tax citizens rather than assessing the State Legislatures for the tax monies necessary to administer the federal government; granting the federal government the right to regulate interstate commerce to insure free trade between the states; coin money and operate the postal service; and the establishment of a national judiciary. The previously delegated powers of war, peace, and international alliances were also restated. Other than that, the states retained their full sovereignty.

Either by malicious intent or oversight, the statement of sovereignty contained in the Second Article of the Articles of Confederation was omitted from the Constitution. However, it was added at the insistence of the Anti-Federalist, with the Ninth and Tenth Amendments ratified in 1791.

“The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”

With the formation of the Democrat Party, organized by Andrew Jackson in 1825, the real power of government began to shift from the people to political parties. For the past hundred and eighty-five years the two major political parties have competed with each other for the reigns of power. Party power has increased until today we are ruled over by an oligarchy consisting of the Speaker of the House, the Majority Leader of the Senate, the President, and the so-called “swing vote” of the Supreme Court, each representing the needs of their respective parties rather than the needs of the people and the states. Lip-service is given to the “sovereignty of the people” by allowing them to choose which of the two political parties will rule over them for the next two, four or six years. The constitutional form of government established by the Founders has all but been forgotten.

If we are ever to regain the liberty and freedom left to us by the Founding Fathers, it is imperative that we throw off the power exercised over us by political parties. This cannot be accomplished in one or two election cycles. Because of the six-year term of Senators, multiple election cycles will be required. However, it can be done with the concentrated and focused efforts of the American people. We can pass on to the next generation a free republican form of government envisioned by the Founders or we can pass on a socialist oligarchy, the choice is up to us.

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Will Third Parties Spoil the 2010 and 2012 Elections For Republicans?

“Those who refuse to learn the lessons of history are doomed to repeat it.” ~Santayana

An increasing number of conservatives and misguided patriots are considering supporting a third party in the 2010 and 2012 elections.  The traditional home of conservatives, the Republican Party, has been courting “moderates” for years, ignoring its conservative base. The Republican establishment is convinced that moderates are the key to winning elections because they believe only moderates can attract the independent voters necessary to win any election. Experience has shown this to be an erroneous assumption on the part of Republicans. On a level playing field moderates lose every time. Voters tend to gravitate to candidates with a clear set of values and the ability to articulate them.

As long as the main stream media keep promoting the moderate myth and party leaders keep believing it, the Republican Party will continue promoting moderates. Party leaders, like their counterparts in private business are always trying to increase “market share”. They do this by protecting the incumbents already in office and attempting to add to their share by gaining seats currently held by the opposition party. Both parties practice this tactic.  Democrats running in Republican districts try to sound conservative and Republicans running in Democrat districts try to sound progressive. The problem is that too many candidates on the Republican side actually are progressive Republicans.

Conservatives have become fed up with this game that ends up giving them a choice in the general election between a progressive Republican and a progressive Democrat. That is one reason why so many are considering a Third Party. Third parties have played an important role in American political history, but they do not win elections. That is not because they do not have good ideas; it is because of the “winner take all” system set up by the Founders. Whether it requires a majority to win or a plurality, the end result is the same. One of the two major parties win and third parties only become spoilers for the one most closely aligned with its own position.

The first candidate to run for President on a third party ticket was William Wirt in 1832, running on the Antimasonic ticket.  He got a whopping 7 electoral votes out of the 286 cast. John Floyd, running as an independent (no party) in the same election got 11 votes by comparison. The two major party candidates at the time, Democrat Andrew Jackson and National Republican Henry Clay, got 219 and 49 electoral votes respectively. The most successful third party candidates in Presidential elections were Theodore Roosevelt running on the Progressive Party ticket in 1912, Strom Thurmond running on the States Rights Democratic ticket in 1948, and George Wallace running on the American Independent ticket in 1968. State and local politics are different than Presidential politics because of the Electoral College, but the results are the same.

Third parties have succeeded in winning a smattering of elective offices at the state and local level out of the tens of thousands there are nationwide. Although third parties have had limited success in electing state and local candidates, those successes have always proven temporary, lasting only until the “Peter Principle” kicks in and they reach their level of incompetence. To understand the dynamics of third party influence, we have only to look at two modern examples of groups that have exercised a substantial influence over American politics.

Although the tea party movement is not a political party, no one can deny that they are having a tremendous influence on the political establishment in America today. They give us one of the models of the dynamics at work when third parties are effective in molding public opinion to their cause. The other model comes from the opposite end of the political spectrum, the Democratic Socialists of America.  What do these two groups have in common? Both have a remarkable influence in American politics, yet neither nominate candidates of their own. Instead they wield their influence by backing like-minded candidates in one of the two major parties; the tea parties in the Republican Party and the socialists in the Democrat Party.

To understand how effective this tactic is, consider the testimony of the Democratic Socialist of America itself as expressed in the Q & A section of their website.

Q. Aren’t you a party that’s in competition with the Democratic Party for votes and support?

A. No, we are not a separate party. Like our friends and allies in the feminist, labor, civil rights, religious, and community organizing movements, many of us have been active in the Democratic Party. We work with those movements to strengthen the party’s left wing, represented by the Congressional Progressive Caucus. (emphasis added)

The process and structure of American elections seriously hurts third party efforts. Winner-take-all elections instead of proportional representation, rigorous party qualification requirements that vary from state to state, a presidential instead of a parliamentary system, and the two-party monopoly on political power have doomed third party efforts. We hope that at some point in the future, in coalition with our allies, an alternative national party will be viable. For now, we will continue to support progressives who have a real chance at winning elections, which usually means left-wing Democrats.”

Using this tactic, progressives (American socialists) have succeeded in taking over the Democrat Party and now control the White House and both branches of Congress.  Conservatives do not need to reinvent the wheel, they simply need to follow the example of the tea parties and the socialists. In the end, as the socialists have discovered, third party candidacies always prove counter productive to their own goals. It is difficult to argue with the lessons of history.  The lesson is there and well stated by the DSA. We can only hope that conservatives learn it before it is too late.

For a discussion of the DSA’s role in giving us Barack Obama, see our post from a year ago, “Obama’s Four Year Plan

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