Category Archives: talk radio

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.

Another Shot To The Left Foot

Fortunately for America, the left keeps shooting itself in the foot; this time, with said foot firmly implanted in its mouth. I am talking, of course, about the ruling on Wednesday by activist judge Sarah Bolton on Arizona’s SB 1070 immigration bill. While her ruling might seem to be a setback for patriots opposed to the open borders policy of the Obama Administration, it does stoke the fire in the belly of conservatives and other patriots everywhere. If nothing else, the left seems intent on keeping the passions of patriots white hot until the November elections. We need to thank them for that.

More than 70% of the voters support Arizona’s law and a majority of voters nationwide wants their Legislatures to pass similar laws. That is a large voting block for the left to alienate, and is another bone-headed action that could help lead to the destruction of the Democrat Party in the coming two election cycles.

While the court’s ruling is only a temporary injunction until the full case in presented in court, it does for the time being, neuter the Arizona law. The court forbade the police from questioning the immigration status of suspects picked up on other charges. It also prohibited the enforcement of the federal requirement that immigrants have their immigration papers on their person at all times. It also struck down the part of the law dealing with the illegal immigrant’s ability to seek employment and perform work. It leaves in place, however, the right to bring civil suit against sanctuary cities that refuse to allow enforcement of immigration law in their jurisdiction.

Drug dealers, rapists, muggers, carjackers, and so forth can now be bailed out and put back on the street instead of being turned over to ICE for processing and possible deportation, as has been the custom. I suppose that if an illegal immigrant flags down a police car and confesses to being an illegal immigrant, the officer can still provide taxi service to ICE headquarters, although that might be risky since the illegal can always change his mind and claim the officer demanded his “papers”.

This is by no means the final chapter in Arizona’s fight against illegal immigration. All eyes are now on Sheriff Arpiao to see what he will do. He already has a planned crime and immigration sweep scheduled to take place regardless of the outcome of the court case today. Some have suggested that Arizona officials ignore the court ruling and continue with its enforcement plans. This would trigger a constitutional crisis and no one knows what the outcome would be. Frog marching Governor Brewer out of the Governor’s Mansion would certainly be an attention grabber guaranteed to provide at least a couple of day’s material for our friends in talk radio and the talking heads on TV. Even members of the MSM like the New York Times and MSNBC would find it hard to ignore. The next few days are going to be quite interesting.

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A Test For Tea Parties

Tuesday, all eyes will be on Illinois, Republicans will be looking for clues to determine how to run their general election campaigns.  Democrats will be looking for propaganda to convince their dwindling supporters that the hemorrhaging has stopped.  Everyone will be looking at the “tea party movement” in Illinois for an indication of its strength or weakness.

The left only has one page in its playbook for fighting its opposition, “demonize and destroy them”.  They will be looking to us for an opening.  The big race that will draw the most national attention and generate the most analysis and fodder for the talking heads is the U.S. Senate race.  The three candidates they will be closely watching are the liberal Mark Kirk, the untested Patrick Hughes and the conservative Don Lowery.

The Republican establishment has forgiven him his transgressions against Party principles in voting for TARP and Cap and Trade, and is backing Mark Kirk to win the nomination. They are counting on his backing from special interest groups, his name recognition, and his newly learned conservative rhetoric to win out in November against the Democratic nominee.

The conservative elite are backing Patrick Hughes.  He has endorsements from a large number of Republican moderates and even some conservatives who believe he is the one to beat Kirk.  His PR firm has managed to arrange interviews with talk radio hosts like Don Wade and Mark Levin.  Mark has endorsed him on the air, and as Mark is a favorite with constitution conservatives, his endorsement carries some weight.

Don Lowery is a low budget, unknown grassroots candidate who has a dedicated following among the tea parties, but little acknowledgement from the mass media or from conservative radio.  Both the Democrats and Republicans are hoping that Lowery and Hughes will split the conservative vote and give the nomination to Mark Kirk. That would be a real tragedy for the country and a major set back for the tea party movement.

To complicate the situation even further, it all boils down to principle.  Those whose core principle is based on constitutional limited government will vote for Lowery and those whose core principle is based on winning at any cost will vote for Hughes. I do not pretend to be an infallible prognosticator, but from my point of view there is no way Hughes can win and Lowery’s chances depend entirely on the tea partiers and 912ers.

Tuesday is going to be a major test for the young tea party movement and not just for Illinois. Its ramifications will be felt throughout the country. The test is whether the tea party movement can unite behind a single candidate within the next few days or, is the way to neutralize the movement to fragment it by running a number of viable conservative candidates in each election and splitting the conservative vote?  I will let you know Wednesday.

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An Argument for Term Limits

minute-man-2-lithoWe have both the responsibility and opportunity of living with the most incompetent government ever to occupy the District of Columbia.  I say “responsibility” because, as a nation, we have looked the other way for a full century while the federal government abandoned the “American Dream” of “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” envisioned by the founders, settling instead for a pipe-dream of, entertainment, toys and ease.  Too many of us are more interested in our favorite sports team, the antics of the celebrity of the day, and how we can acquire the latest technological toy, than in what our government is doing.

In our quest for entertainment and comfort, we have allowed our government to be taken over by a group of political hacks, more loyal to their political bosses and campaign contributors who keep them in office than to the country and the Constitution they are sworn to defend.  Even the most incompetent among them are continuously returned to Washington, so long as we can snack on the scraps of pork that fall from their table, while they feast on the fruits of our labor.

I say “opportunity” because the crushing debt and level of tyranny bearing down on our children, our children’s children and us is something we can no longer ignore.  As more citizens become aware of where the road we are now on is taking us, the opportunity for changing course becomes more of a possibility.  The most frequent question we hear asked on talk radio today is, “What can I do?”  Everywhere we see signs that the American people are not only frightened about where our leaders are taking us, they are downright angry as well.  Millions of citizens are expected to take part in the “tea parties” planned across the country on April 15th.

There is a lot we can do as individuals, but we first have to take an honest look at how we got here. Conservatives need to take full advantage of the awakened interest and anger of millions of Americans to reeducate as many as possible on where our liberty comes from, and what the foundation of our past prosperity rests on.  We need to recognize that we no longer have the Constitutional, representative republic entrusted to us by our Founders.

Our type of government cannot survive without the rule of law.  We worry about the lawlessness on our southern border, and in some of our inner cities while our political class is the most lawless of all.  We cannot rightly be described as “a nation of law and not of men” as long as our political leaders continue to ignore and wantonly violate the Supreme Law of the Land, the Constitution.

Our representative form of government works fine so long as it is held in check by a Constitution.  When it departs from the Constitution it is no longer truly representative in the way it was intended to be.  The federal government is a creation of the states and was intended to serve the needs of the states to “form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity.”  It no longer performs these functions that justify its existence.

Instead of forming a more perfect union, it seeks to divide us through class warfare, racial divides, and cultural diversity.  Instead of “establishing justice“, our judicial branch is used to promote political and social agendas that are anything but “just“.  In place of “domestic tranquility“, the federal government has become the primary source of domestic agitation.  It seeks to promote the welfare of favored groups rather than the “general welfare,” and is in the process of removing the “blessings of liberty from ourselves and our posterity.”  Last but not least, the most important purpose of the federal government, “to provide for the common defense” is the one most despised by our current political class.

For those who take exception to my claim that we are no longer a representative government, I would remind them that the purpose of our government is to provide us with a common defense against foreign adversaries, and to deal with a handful of issues that cannot be handled effectively by the states acting independently.  Under the Constitution, the only involvement by the federal government has in our economy is in maintaining the network of communication provided by the Post Office, protecting intellectual property through patents and copyrights, promoting and protecting free trade between the states through the regulation of interstate commerce, and promoting international trade through the regulation of imports and exports.  Under the Constitution, the control and use of natural resources, social services, and intrastate commerce is the responsibility of the individual states.

As a whole, the economy is left to the ingenuity of the American people through capitalism, with the states exercising the amount of oversight necessary to insure fair and honest dealing between buyers and sellers.  The products made and the services provided depend on the perceived needs of the people and the willingness of businesses to provide for those needs at an honest profit.  Necessary social services such as, fire and police protection, care for the aged, health care for the indigent, education, etc., are the responsibility of state and local governments, churches, private charities, families and the charity of individuals.  For the most part, individuals are left free to pursue their own avenues to happiness and prosperity.

Under such a constitutional government, those who represent the states in national affairs are truly representatives of the people and sensitive to its will.  That is no longer the case, however.  Today, our Congressmen and Senators represent the interest of political parties, and their supporters, not the interest of the people.  The federal government has become so intertwined in the economic affairs of the states and their citizens that virtually every law they pass has a tangible effect on how each of us is permitted to live our daily lives.  Congress exercises power over individual citizens that was never intended by the founders nor permitted by the Constitution.  Yet, we seem powerless to do anything about it.

The Congressman or Senator from New York sponsors and votes for laws that determines how the citizen in Utah or Louisiana lives his or her life.  A Congresswoman elected by the citizens of one city and a Senator elected by the citizens of one of our least populated states exercise dictatorial powers over what types of legislation can be debated and voted on in Congress and the conditions under which they can be considered.

No member of Congress is elected by more than 1% of the national vote, yet they are able to determine what 100% of our citizens are allowed to do with their lives.  To prevent this is precisely why the Founders crafted a Constitution that limited the powers of Congress and the federal government to matters that were truly national in nature.  The Tenth Amendment was added to the Constitution to insure that the limitation placed on Congress and the federal government was understood and adhered to.

To correct the abuses of Franklin Roosevelt, the Twenty Second Amendment limiting the terms of the President, was added in 1947 and ratified in 1951.  Experiences of the last fifty years indicate we need another amendment that limits the terms of our Senators and Congressmen.  The argument most often given is that the people should be allowed to elect anyone they wanted for as long as they are doing an adequate job, and that to do otherwise would infringe on the right of the people to be represented by the person of their choice.

This would perhaps be a valid argument if we were still governed under a Constitution that limited the powers of government to those delegated.  However, as long as Congress exercises the power to protect us from ourselves by telling us what to eat, what to drive, how much electricity our appliances can consume, and how much water our toilets can use, we deserve the right to protect ourselves from the uninformed, indifferent, and just plain stupid voters who continue to return incompetent, self-serving officials to Washington election after election.

Meanwhile, at the state and local level we need a method for recalling representatives when it becomes evident they are not going to honor their oath of office by protecting and defending the Constitution.  The mere existence of such a possibility would perhaps, provide the leverage we need to remind them that they are there to serve the interest of the people not the party.  Just as Rom Emmanuel says, “we can’t let a good crisis go to waste”.  We truly have a crisis in government, and we should take the opportunity it provides to return our government to the purposes for which it was created.

Fairness Doctrine 2.0

minute-man-2-lithoPresident Obama is the most tightly scripted President in history, partly due to the relatively new technology of the teleprompter.  The teleprompter is vital to the Obama image because he is an excellent reader and a lousy orator.  The few times his handlers have allowed him to speak in public without a teleprompter his rhetoric has been filled with pauses, “uhs”, “ahs”, “umms” and clichés as he casts about in his mind for words that will convey the “official” populist message without revealing his true intentions.

Looking at his rise from obscurity to the most powerful office on the globe in less than four years could cause those of a conspiratorial nature to think of him as a “Manchurian Candidate”.  However, I am not given to conspiracies.  I look rather to trends brought about by the collective influence of thousands and sometimes millions of individuals making up a political or social movement.  There is no doubt that we have been trending toward socialism since the advent of the “progressive movement” at the beginning of the twentieth century.  Obama is simply the culmination of that movement.

The problem for Obama and his socialist supporters is that Americans are overwhelmingly center right conservatives with a visceral aversion to socialism.  That being the case, his challenge is to get his agenda firmly into place before the American people fully realize what he is doing.  To accomplish this it is imperative that his supporters control the flow of information.  That should be an insurmountable obstacle in a nation whose Constitution guarantees freedom of speech.  Such is not the case, however.

Presidents and Congresses have cooperated throughout our history to find ways of getting around the First Amendment and control the flow of information.  John Adams, our second President and a dedicated big government Federalist used the threat of an unpopular war with France to call for, and get, the “Sedition Act of 1798”.  This, less than a decade after the Bill of Rights was ratified by the states.  Article Two of the Sedition Act says,

“And be it further enacted, That if any person shall write, print, utter or publish, or shall cause or procure to be written, printed, uttered or publishing, or shall knowingly and willingly assist or aid in writing, printing, uttering or publishing any false, scandalous and malicious writing or writings against the government of the United States, or either house of the Congress of the United States, or the President of the United States, with intent to defame the said government, or either house of the said Congress, or the said President, or to bring them, or either of them, into contempt or disrepute; or to excite against them, or either or any of them, the hatred of the good people of the United States, or to excite any unlawful combinations therein, for opposing or resisting any law of the United States, or any act of the President of the United States, done in pursuance of any such law, or of the powers in him vested by the constitution of the United States, or to resist, oppose, or defeat any such law or act, or to aid, encourage or abet any hostile designs of any foreign nation against the United States, their people or government, then such person, being thereof convicted before any court of the United States having jurisdiction thereof, shall be punished by a fine not exceeding two thousand dollars, and by imprisonment not exceeding two years.”

Fortunately, the Sedition Act had a “sunset clause” calling for it to expire at the beginning of the next Presidential term, March 3, 1801.  Thomas Jefferson won the 1800 election and immediately pardoned everyone who had been convicted under the unconstitutional law.  Other administrations, including those of Lincoln, Hoover, Roosevelt and others have attempted to limit free speech to one degree or another.

The most far-reaching Act in terms of its effects today came during the roaring twenties.  Between Congress’ first attempt to regulate broadcasting in 1912 when radio transmissions were mostly used in communicating between ships and shore and the mid-twenties radio became popular with the public.  Then Secretary of Commerce Herbert Hoover controlled broadcasting.  Anyone could obtain permission to broadcast over any frequency chosen by Hoover by simply mailing a post card to the Secretary.

By 1926, there were 15,111 amateur stations, 1,902 ship stations, 553 land based stations for maritime use and 536 broadcasting stations.  The chaos created by overlapping signals and the complaints they caused among the public made it obvious that some type of control over the use of the airwaves was necessary.  The Attorney General’s office issued a decision in 1926 stating that the Radio Act of 1912 did not give the Secretary of Commerce the authority to assign wavelengths.  Consequently, Congress passed the Radio Act of 1927 establishing the Federal Radio Commission.

The new law was intended to bring order out of the chaos that existed in radio broadcasting at the time.  However, politicians could not resist the temptation to set guidelines as to what could or could not be broadcast over the airwaves. In crafting the new legislation, they revived the spirit of the Sedition Act but did not give it the same specificity in terms of what was or was not acceptable. Fearing what they perceived as the potential of radio to be the means of calling for radical political or social reform, Congress gave the RFC authority to determine when broadcaster were not operating their stations according to “the public interest, convenience and necessity”.  The threat of withholding licenses or not renewing them kept most stations in line.

The ’27 law was revised in 1934 creating the FCC and expanding the licensing powers of the government.  In 1945, the FCC established the “fairness doctrine” requiring broadcasters to provide equal time to all sides of controversial issues.  The result was that broadcasters simply avoided the airing of controversial issues.  In 1987, the Supreme Court ruled the FCC was not required to enforce the fairness doctrine since it was an FCC regulation and not a statute.  Under the leadership of President Reagan the doctrine was dropped.

Since the abolition of the fairness doctrine created the conditions allowing for the rise of conservative talk radio, most conservatives expect there to be an attempt by the Obama administration to bring it back.  In reality, some form of the fairness doctrine is essential to the Obama agenda.  The so-called “mainstream media” including the broadcast TV networks, NPR, PBS, and most national newspapers have been willing propagandists for the liberal and socialist wings of the Democratic Party for decades.  In addition, the most heavily funded Internet sites are those promoting the liberal/socialist agenda.

With the exception of the Fox News cable network, talk radio provides the only mass opposition to the Obama agenda with up to fifty million listeners, twenty to thirty million of them also being listeners to Rush Limbaugh.  President Obama has said he has no interest in reviving the fairness doctrine.  That’s a pretty good indication that he is working behind the scenes to bring it about.  Actually, his administration has launched a two-pronged attack on talk radio, utilizing both Congress and the tested and proven tactic that worked so well against President Bush, demonization.

A concerted effort has been launched over the past month or so to marginalize and destroy the creditability of Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity, the best known of conservative talk show hosts.  Similar efforts have been directed against Ingraham, Beck, Hewitt, Reagan, Gallagher and others.  While the talking heads and scribblers in the mass media are carrying on this campaign, Congress is preparing the way for legislation to give it more control over the airwaves.

Last week Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) attached an amendment to the DC Voting Rights Act, another unconstitutional Bill, calling for more “diversity of ownership” and “localism” in radio broadcasting.  Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-Mi) has called for Senate hearings, requiring station owners to explain their programming practices.  “I think it’s absolutely time to pass a standard. Now, whether it’s called the Fairness Standard, whether it’s called something else – I absolutely think it’s time to be bringing accountability to the airwaves.”  Stabenow said.

Other Congressional leaders on record as approving of some form of information control over the airwaves, include Senator Jeff Bingaman (D-N.M.), John Kerry (D-Mass.), Harry Reid (D-Nev), Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.) and, of course Barney Frank and Chris Dodd, among others.  The latest U.S. Senator to fall in line with the liberal/socialists in Congress concerning the idea behind the fairness doctrine is Senator Tom Harkin of Iowa.  Last week he told liberal talk show host Bill Press, “We gotta get the fairness doctrine back in law again.”

Talk radio is both the number one threat to the Obama agenda and the number one channel for conservative’s ability to successfully oppose it.  It is imperative that we protect our freedom to express our political opinions freely without censorship by government; otherwise, we can look forward to the wholesale loss of all our freedoms.

Totalitarianism 101

minute-man-2-lithoThe patterns of totalitarianism are taking shape in the American government virtually unacknowledged.  Few Americans can fathom the possibility of elected officials deliberately carrying out policies detrimental to the country’s welfare.  In the minds of Washington socialist dominating our government, the policies they are advocating are really best for the country.  To them, American is a flawed government that must be remade for its own survival.  Totalitarian policies are intended for the good of the people, to protect them from themselves.

A look at the despotic governments of the twentieth century reveals at least four characteristics of totalitarian governments.  Three of these characteristics are evident in recent developments we read about on the front pages of our daily papers or hear about in prime time newscasts every day.  The fourth is a necessity that must be implemented in order for the first three to take root and flourish.

1. Centralized Power

One of the fundamental themes of our Constitution is protection from tyranny and the preservation of liberty.   The original plan consisted of thirteen independent and sovereign states united in a federal government believed to be necessary for the collective security and harmony of the several states.  One of the greatest fears of the founders and their critics was that any federal arrangement might develop into a consolidated government that would usurp the sovereignty of the states and trample on the liberty of the people.

To guard against this possibility the Framers listed in the Constitution the specific powers granted to the federal government (Article I, Section 8) and then emphasized the sovereignty of the individual states by adding the Tenth Amendment.  Over the years the Federal government has chipped away at this feature of the Constitution through targeted tax incentives and economic and social regulations designed to transfer power from the states and the people to an elite ruling class in Washington.

For over forty-five years—two generations—the Federal government has managed our education system.  The end result is that most Americans have lost sight of the federal, republican character of our government and think of it a monolithic central government designed to direct the affairs of all the states and their citizens.  The economic downturn that started at the end of 2007 and continues today provided an opening for the government to centralize economic planning and direction in Washington and they are taking full advantage of the opportunity.

The central planning and control of economic activity is a central part of all totalitarian governments. Through the trillions of dollars being pumped into the economy by “stimulus packages” implemented by both the Bush and Obama administrations we have been placed firmly on the path to the tyranny of centralized planning.

2. One Party Rule

All totalitarian governments have one political party that acts as a “rubber stamp” for the head of the party who functions, to a degree, as a dictator, much like the City Council and Mayor of Chicago, Illinois.  In America we have two major parties, the Democratic Party and the Republican Party.  Regardless of the label, all political parties in America fall within a continuum from Constitution Fundamentalism on the right to Marxist Socialism on the left.  The Democratic Party, with the election of Barack Obama, is on the threshold of becoming a true Marxist Party to the left of European Socialism.

The Republican Party is slightly to the left of center and would be further left if not for the restraining influence of its conservative base.  Too many Republicans share the aspirations of power with the Democratic Party and believe the way to get and keep that power is by supporting big government and raiding the public treasury on behalf of their supporters.  The touted ideal of “bipartisanship” is nothing more than a tool for moving the Republican Party further to the left until we eventually have one party with two labels.

During his first month in office, Obama has instituted a number of policies designed to entrench the power of the Democratic Party for generations to come.  As we have pointed out numerous times over the past year, Community Organizers are the “foot soldiers” of the socialist movement.  They work diligently at the local level to “plant” the principles of socialism at the grassroots of American Society.  Few have been more active or more successful in this task than the former affiliate of Barack Obama, ACORN.  In the stimulus package just signed into law millions of dollars have been allocated for “community organizing” and organizations similar to ACORN.

Another effective means of strengthening the Democratic Party is by Gerrymandering Congressional Districts and manipulating the counting of citizens.   By Executive Order, Obama intends to take over the 2010 census.  By changing the way in which citizens are counted and “estimating” rather than counting citizens difficult to find, the Democratic Party can substantially increase its representation in the House of Representatives and alter the number of Presidential Electors allocated to the various states.  Article I, Section 2 of the Constitution places the responsibility for conducting the census totally in the hand of the Legislature and not the Executive.

“The actual Enumeration shall be made within three Years after the first Meeting of the Congress of the United States, and within every subsequent Term of ten Years, in such Manner as they (Congress) shall by Law direct.” (Article 1, Section2, Clause 4)  The transfer of this duty to the White House by Executive Order is clearly an unconstitutional usurpation of power by the Executive Branch.

3. Dependency

Still another means of concentrating power in the hands of a single party is through the creation of dependency.  The third and most reliable tool of totalitarianism is to cultivate a dependency of the masses on the power of the state.  The three most effective means for creating dependency are in the areas of defense, crises, and economics.  Because of the natural dangers in the world of international relations, the “enemies” ploy is a “gimmie” for the would be dictator.  Every modern dictator has used the threat of real or manufactured enemies as a means of solidifying the support of the people behind the protection of the state.

Sometimes the enemy is real and easily identified, like Nazi Germany, Soviet Russia and Islamic Terrorism.  Sometimes they are manufactured like “The Great Satan” of Islamic despots or “global warming“.  Always they are used by aspiring tyrants as a means of creating fear and rationalizing an ever expanding role for government.  Unfortunately, we in America are not immune to this tactic.  Whatever the good intentions, and even the necessity of some policies, there is no denying that the war on terror, the war on drugs, the war on poverty and the war against climate change has seen a steady erosion of personal liberty and freedom in our own country.

Another means of creating dependency is crisis management.  Natural disasters like hurricane Katrina provide fertile ground for the expansion of government.  Although federal response to Katrina highlighted its shortcomings in dealing with local disasters, it has still been used to increase the dependency of citizens on the national government rather than state and local governments in responding to local crises.  At the same time it is utilized as the rationale for expanding the federal government into areas that should be the primary responsibility of the states and the people, weakening the power of local government and further consolidating the power of Washington bureaucrats.

On the economic front, a large majority of the American people are to some extent dependent on the federal government for part or all of their livelihood.  In addition to those we normally think of as being on the “public dole”, anyone who works in an industry dependent on government contracts, grants, tax incentives, or other government programs ad infinitum, is to some extent, a ward of the federal government.

The best example of this is the health care industry.  In spite of the picayune payments made by agencies like Medicare and Medicaid on behalf of individual patients, the industry as a whole has become dependent on the federal government for its existence; from the phlebotomist to the hospital administrator they all rely on government for a substantial part of their paychecks.

Almost any problem can be turned by the government into an opportunity to increase dependency and expand the scope of government.  As Rom Emmanuel says “never let a crisis go to waste”.  In the hands of government anything can be and often is turned into a crisis.  The mild recession we entered in 2007 has been turned into an economic crisis by the Democratic Party and used to justify the largest expansion of government in our nation’s history.

4. Control of the Means of Communication

With proper information, people will always make decisions based on what is best for their own welfare.  Information is power, and for that reason totalitarian governments always fear the free flow of information.  An argument could be made that America today would not be on the verge of converting to socialism, if not for the national media functioning as propagandists for the socialist movement over the past decade.

The Democratic Party controls the flow of information through the mass media with only a few exceptions.  Those exceptions are talk radio, a segment of the internet, and FNC.  No one would voluntarily choose tyranny over liberty if they were aware of the choice they were making.  Eight years of misinformation, slanted reporting, half-truths and propaganda against the Bush administration by the MSM created the circumstances that led to the election of Obama as President.

Now that we are at the point of transition between capitalism and socialism, control of information is even more critical to the new President and his supporters.  In order for the transformation of our society planned by Obama to go somewhat smoothly, the tens of millions of listeners to talk radio must be neutralized.  For Obama and the Democratic Party that is not just something that would make their lives easier, it is an absolute necessity.  Democratic leaders like Schumer, Durbin, Pelosi, Reid and others are already sending out “feelers” as they cast about for a plan that can be sold or forced on the public.

Make no mistake about it.  An attempt will be made by the federal government to silence talk radio.  It’s only a matter of finding the correct vehicle for its implementation.  When that happens it will be the fourth and final step on our road to totalitarianism.

A Pelosi-Obama Preview of Socialist Rule for America

As the American electorate debates the issue of transforming our Constitutional Republic into a Democratic Socialist state, Barack Obama and Nancy Pelosi are giving us a preview of what we can expect after a socialist takeover. Words alone do not seem to be enough. Mainstream Conservative commentators and talk show hosts appear to have a blind spot similar to their left wing counterparts, only for a different subject.

For years, the left in America has tried to ignore the threat of Islamic terrorism. Osama Bin Laden sends taped messages on a regular basis informing the world of their intentions and the left continues to ignore them. Barack Obama, the ultimate denier, continues to cling to his belief that they can be pacified through cooperation and dialogue, even expressing a willingness to meet personally with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran, if he is elected President. Above all else, the left resists admitting to the obvious identity of the enemy, radical Islamic Terrorism.

Too many conservatives have the same blind spot toward socialism. Barack Obama delivers speech after speech espousing one socialist objective after another, yet conservative writers and commentators continue to speak of him as if he were just another liberal Democrat. In fact, many of them would be among the first to defend Obama if he should be referred to publicly as a socialist, contending that it was divisive hate speech and any attempt to label him a socialist would be “crossing the line“.

In predicting what life in America would be like under a socialist administration, Obama supplies the words and Pelosi supplies the actions. Together they present a clear picture to all but the most determined self-deceivers. Obama has spent the past year going from one end of the country to the other promising change and specifying distinctively what those changes would be, and yet, conservatives are still complaining that he never tells us what he intends to change.

How much clearer could he be? The first thing he has promised to change is our entire economic system. Market driven, free enterprise will be a thing of the past. As he has said on more than one occasion, our economy needs to be geared toward the needs of the people not the profits of big business. What they consider to be excess profits will be taken by taxation and redirected into “investments” for the public good. No clearer example of this could be given than his proposal to take so-called excess profits from oil companies and use them to subsidize competing products.

Earlier this week he announced that we must end the era of oil in our time. He has promised to replace our dirty oil based economy with a “green economy”. To do this he has promised to “invest” (subsidize with taxpayer money) alternative energy sources. Someday, if we survive, there may be sources of alternative energy, but not in this century. The best we can hope for in the foreseeable future are supplemental energy resources.

The only reliable, economically feasible energy sources we have now are oil, coal, natural gas, hydro, and nuclear. All of these, with the exception of hydroelectric, would be controlled by government under Obama‘s policies. Hydroelectric is self-restricting. Wind, solar, bio, and thermal can never be more than supplemental. Wind, solar and thermal are too intermittent in nature and bio is too costly in terms of the commodities it displaces to ever be more than supplemental sources.

The primary source of energy for transportation and commerce will continue to be oil for generations to come. We can supplement it with biofuels and electricity but we cannot replace it. Since, under Obama’s plan we will not be able to increase the availability of oil the only choice is to decrease its use. Proposed programs to conserve energy not only hinder economic expansion, it also limits personal liberty.

The recent rise in world oil supply resulting from lower oil consumption over the past few months is heralded by the left as a victory for their policies. It is a victory only insofar as their policies are designed to make oil too expensive to use. For years, the left has been calling for added taxes in order to raise the price of gasoline and discourage its use. The ban on new exploration and drilling, coupled with an increase in global consumption has accomplished that goal for them. The rise in world inventories only indicates less economic activity, fewer jobs, and less liberty for us all.

I read somewhere that Americans have driven three million miles less in the past year. That means they are taking shorter vacations and staying closer to home; they’re making less trips to the beach; they’re going on fewer family outings; and they are taking fewer “impulse” trips. In other words, they are experiencing less personal liberty to pursue the things they enjoy.

In overhauling our economy, changes that can’t be forced through “incentives”, prices, and taxes will be made through regulations. The ban on incandescent bulbs and tougher CAFE standards forcing us to drive smaller, less safe cars are only two examples of the changes we can expect to be mandatory in our lifestyles.

The second change Obama has promised is a change in the relationship between government and the people. The traditional idea that the purpose of government is to secure the natural rights of its citizens is to be replaced with the idea that the purpose of citizenship is to serve the needs of the state.

In his Denver speech, July 2, Obama announced, “I will ask for your service and your active citizenship when I am President of the United States”. He then goes on to describe plans for recruiting students, young people, seniors and people of all ages into voluntary “public service”.  Part of his plan to funnel efforts of the people into state approved projects involves the establishment of a new “Social Investment Fund Network”.

This new spending will be used in coordinating the “grass roots, the private sector, the foundations, the faith-based organizations, the private sector and the government” toward “our most pressing national challenges”. To help accomplish this goal he has promised to launch a new “Social Entrepreneur Agency”.

The third change promised is a change in our relationship to the world. In his Berlin speech, Obama declared himself to be a “citizen of the world”. World citizenship is another basic doctrine of socialism. Under this doctrine, people are encouraged to migrate from country to country without regard for national boundaries. National citizenship becomes more or less meaningless.

As a good citizen of the world community, our military would be increasingly under the direction of the United Nations and our citizens increasingly subject to a world court. Taxpayer money would be used to finance social programs in third world countries and developing nations.

A fourth area slated for change is the structure of the family. The traditional structure consisting of a father, a mother and two or three children will continue to give way to families made up of any combination of males, females, and children. Gay marriage, gay adoption, trans-gender and bi-sexual relationships will become even more commonplace.

Under the Obama plan, the primary care and training of children will become more and more the purview of the state. From early childhood through primary and secondary education, children would be under the direction of state approved day-care and pre-school before moving on to union dominated public schools. By the time a young person graduates from college they will have been exposed to a thousand hours of mandatory socialist indoctrination via “community service” in college and pre-college programs. These “community service” projects directed by the state will be little more than internships in the socialist lifestyle.

The urban public school systems will keep on turning out an underclass of citizens unqualified for success in the modern economy. This underclass will continue to be exploited by the state to expand its control over the general population in the name of public safety, humanitarian compassion, and social justice.

A fifth change Obama will attempt to implement is more stringent control over the media. The centerpiece of the plan for controlling political thought in American will be the reinstatement of the “fairness doctrine” in broadcasting which if possible will be expanded to include the internet much as it is in China today. The purpose will be to silence opposition and conservative thought.

The changes promised by Obama involve nothing less than a complete overhaul of the American way of life. Institutions of finance, manufacturing, transportation, education, family, religion, and communication, will all undergo cataclysmic changes.

I realize most of my readers believe these changes are impossible because the American people would never permit it. That’s where Ms. Pelosi comes in. Barack Obama and Nancy Pelosi have similar personalities. Both are natural-born despots. You only have to look at the tactics of Pelosi as Speaker of the House over the past two years to see a preview of the next decade should the socialist/democrats win a major victory in November.

The ultimate example of Pelosi tactics in suppressing opposition is her stance against increasing our supply of oil through domestic drilling. Rather than permitting debate on the issue, she closed Congress and returned to her socialist kingdom in “la-la” land.

The two positions with the most authority under the Constitution were the President and Vice-President, the President as chief executive, Commander in Chief over the armed forces, director of foreign relations and chief administrator of justice, the Vice-President as President of the Senate. Only John Adams, the first Vice-President, under George Washington, attempted to exercise his responsibility as Senate President. Vice-Presidents since then, starting with Thomas Jefferson, have been content to abdicate that responsibility to the Senate Majority Leader with the exception of ceremonial occasions and in the case of tie votes.

Since becoming Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi has assumed authority eclipsing both the President, and Vice-President. A socialist triumvirate consisting of Barack Obama, Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi in the top three positions of power would result in an erosion of liberty and a level of tyranny unknown in our two-hundred and twenty year history.

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