Friday, December 21, 2018

Iconic: Governor George C. Wallace- 'Talking About His Ideas About Communism'

Source:Iconic- Governor George C. Wallace (Democrat, Alabama) perhaps in 1965.  
"George Wallace talking about his ideas on Communism

From Iconic

This was a common tactic the right-wing (Far-Right, actually ) in the 1960s to blame the civil rights movement, as well as the anti-Vietnam war movement on Communists. Arguing that Communists from Russia or some other Communist state were infiltrating protestors and demonstrators during this period. 

Dr. Martin L. King, was accused by the Far-Right back then of being both a Communist and Socialist. And of course none of these rightists actually bothered to offer any evidence supporting their claims, but when you're a demagogue like George Wallace or anyone else, evidence is the last thing that you look at, because evidence and facts tend to get in the way of your partisan arguments, because facts and evidence tend to contradict you. 

You can also see this post at The Daily Times, on Blogger.

Monday, December 17, 2018

Foreign Affairs: Senator Elizabeth Warren: 'A Foreign Policy For All'

Source:The Atlantic Magazine- U.S. Senator's Bernie Sanders & Elizabeth Warren 
"Around the world, democracy is under assault. Authoritarian governments are gaining power, and right-wing demagogues are gaining strength. Movements toward openness and pluralism have stalled. Inequality is growing, transforming rule by the people into rule by wealthy elites. And here in the United States, many Americans seem to accept—even embrace—the politics of division and resentment.

How did we get here? There’s a story Americans like to tell ourselves about how we built a liberal international order—one based on democratic principles, committed to civil and human rights, accountable to citizens, bound by the rule of law, and focused on economic prosperity for all. It’s a good story, with deep roots. But in recent decades, Washington’s focus has shifted from policies that benefit everyone to policies that benefit a handful of elites. After the Cold War, U.S. policymakers started to believe that because democracy had outlasted communism, it would be simple to build democracy anywhere and everywhere. They began to export a particular brand of capitalism, one that involved weak regulations, low taxes on the wealthy, and policies favoring multinational corporations. And the United States took on a series of seemingly endless wars, engaging in conflicts with mistaken or uncertain objectives and no obvious path to completion. 

The impact of these policy changes has been devastating. While international economic policies and trade deals have worked gloriously well for elites around the world, they have left working people discouraged and disaffected. Efforts to promote the United States’ own security have soaked up huge resources and destabilized entire regions, and meanwhile, U.S. technological dominance has quietly eroded. Inequality has grown worldwide, contributing to an unfolding nationalist backlash that seeks to upend democracy itself. It is little wonder that the American people have less faith in their government today than at any other time in modern U.S. history. The country is in a moment of crisis decades in the making."  

A "foreign policy for all", I guess has a real hipster ring to it, similar to Medicare For All or whatever example you want to use, but like most catch phrases whether they're pop culture or political, when you actually get into them the first question is always, "what does that mean?" What do you mean by that? As much as President Donald Trump's presidency contradicts this, the President of the United States and American government more broadly are actually serious things meant for serious people. This is not a reality TV show or some movie or hip sitcom or anything else. This is real-life where real decisions are made everyday effecting real people. "A foreign policy for all" might have a catch ring to it, but what does that mean and what is in that foreign policy.

So when Senator Elizabeth Warren, argues that it's time to bring our troops home, the first obvious question is, "bring them home from where?" If you're talking about bringing them home from Iraq and Afghanistan, then the next question would be, "what would happen instead after America is out of those two countries?"

Senator Warren, also argues that America spends too much on national defense, OK where would you cut the defense budget? It's hard to get official numbers from the U.S. Defense Department on this, but we're currently somewhere between 50-100 billion dollars on the defense of Europe in NATO. We currently make up just as one country 70% of the entire NATO defense budget. Would asking or demanding that Germany, France, Italy and other European states spend more on their own defense and take a good chunk of that revenue out of our own defense budget since Europe is now spending more on their own defense? America could do a lot with 50-100 billion dollars a year that it wouldn't have to spend on defense. 

You can also see this post at FRS FreeState, on Blogger.

Thursday, December 13, 2018

AEI: What is Pluralism?

Source:AEI- From The American Enterprise Institute. 

From Merriam Webster:

"4a : a state of society in which members of diverse ethnic, racial, religious, or social groups maintain and develop their traditional culture or special interest within the confines of a common civilization. b : a concept, doctrine, or policy advocating this state."

The question has been asked over and over and has been debated over and over what kind of country is America and what type of government that we have. Are we a republic, are we a democracy, are we a liberal democracy, are we a pluralist society, etc when the fact is there's no wrong answer here.

Source:Slide Share- A pluralist society 
America, is a republic, but we're a certain type of republic. Egypt and China are republics, but we're certainly not Egypt or China. They have authoritarian societies and government's, we obviously don't.  Republic by itself doesn't equal democracy or freedom, it just means that the country is governed by civilians and not the military or a monarchy or some theocracy. America, is a democracy at least in the sense that we elect our political leaders and our political leaders are held accountable by the voters in free and fair elections.

The fact is America is a pluralist society and federal republic in the form of a liberal democracy. The largest most diverse melting pot in the world, the largest and oldest liberal democracy in the world where power is very decentralized unlike Egypt, China or Russia. Governmental power is decentralized through three levels of government. Federal, state, and local, but also with the people because we live in a  free society where the people have the freedom to manage their own personal affairs without having government trying to monitor their activities simply because they see them as enemies of the government or disapprove of their personal activities.

In a pluralist society like America, you don't have one dominant ethnic group. Roughly 7-10 Americans today are still of European background, but we don't have one dominant ethnic group in America unlike Britain, where roughly 8-10 Brits are ethnic English or Germany where roughly 9-10 Germans are ethnic German or go to Asia where most of Japan is ethnic Japanese. But 3-10 Americans aren't of European background. We have large African-American population, a major Asian-American population, a significant Middle Eastern population and I could go on. America is both multi-racial and multi-ethnic which is still one of the great and exceptional things about America.

My personal politics here: I'm not colorblind, anyone who actually says that they're  colorblind and can't even tell what the color of their clothes are, or is simply just blind. I'm not race or ethnic blind, back to my point about color, because anyone who has even decent vision or can see with glasses can see someone's race or ethnicity. What I am is what I could call at least pluralist and individualist. I look at and judge people as individuals, not as members of a particular racial or ethnic group. That old but still great Dr. Martin King quote, where he has a dream that one day his children would be judged by the content of their character and not by the color of their skin, I actually believe that and just wished more Americans both on the Right and Left believed that as well. Instead of looking at people as members of groups who should be judged that way.

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Lew Rockwell: Bionic Mosquito: 'Liberalism and Christianity: Liberal Christianity'

Source:Disqus- Christian-Conservatives vs. Christian Liberals. 
“Leftism: From de Sade and Marx to Hitler and Marcuse, by Erik von Kuehnelt-Leddihn

Erik von Kuehnelt-Leddihn (EvKL) examines what he calls “Real Liberalism” in chapter 13 of this book. I think it is worthwhile to capture his understanding of this political and economic philosophy.

Let us look at the verbal meaning. The root is liber (“free”). The term liberalis (and liberalitas) implies generosity in intellectual and material matters.” 

From Lew Rockwell 


From The AudioPedia

Liberalism and Christianity implies at least that they're two different things when the fact is there's a fundamentalist and even theocratic version of Christianity way over on the Right, the Christian-Right in America represents that movement. There's a social democratic version of Christianity way over on the Left, that has been lead by people like Reverend Martin L. King, Reverend Jesse and many other left-wing preachers. And there is a liberal version of Christianity that is less government centric than the social democratic version and even the fundamentalist version. That is more about treating people the way you would want to be treated. About respect and earning the respect of others by how you treat people.

Source:Reformed Spirit- Good quote about Liberal Christianity 
As someone who is not a Christian of any sect or a member of any other religious sect, but who is also not an Atheist, but an Agnostic I actually agree with some of the Ten Commandments.

Thou shalt not kill: meaning we shouldn't take innocent lives.

Thou shalt not steal: any moral person can agree that theft and burglary are wrong and immoral.

Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.

The Golden Rule is not a Ten Commandment, but it's a great rule and gets back to one of my points about Liberal Christianity having to deal with respect which is do unto others as you would have done to you. Treat people the way you want them to treat you. Don't live life thinking you're superior to everyone else and that it should be someone else's honor just to be in your presence. And therefor you can get away with being a jerk ( to be generous ) around other people simply because you're better than them and they don't want to lose you.

Live and let live: here's a moral value that Liberals and Libertarians at least can fall in love with. Also goes to Economics Professor Walter Williams broader definition of property rights which also goes to the liberal value of free choice. Which is free people should be aloud to live freely and don't need big government trying to manage their personal affairs for them and telling them how they should live. Short of hurting innocent people with our personal freedom and choices.

Goes back to two of the Ten Commandments that I mentioned earlier which are thou shalt not kill and thou shalt not steal. Add thou shalt not abuse others either physically or verbally. Thou shalt not rape would be another good example of this. Thou shalt not hurt innocent people with what they're doing especially children and women. The second one some might believe is sexist, but so what.

I'm not a Christian of any sect, but someone with my liberal values could get into a liberal version of Christianity instead of Christians trying to use government to manage people's lives for them and punish people simply because of how they communicate or what they do with their personal times and lives because they see those choices as immoral. Or the Christian-Left, trying to turn government into some national charity and perhaps even replacing charity with some national welfare or charity state using it to take care of the poor by taxing the rich, instead of using government to empower the less-fortunate to be able to take care of themselves. If there was a Liberal-Christian sect like I mentioned, I could become a Christian myself.

You can also see this post at FreeState Now, on WordPress. 

You can also see this post at FreeState Now, on Blogger.

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

POLITICO Magazine: U.S. Representative Jackie Speier: 'Surviving Jonestown'

Source:POLITICO Magazine- Reverend Jim Jones and his People's Temple. 
“Jackie Speier is a congresswoman representing California’s 14th congressional district, which includes San Francisco and the peninsula.

Excerpt from UNDAUNTED: Surviving Jonestown, Summoning Courage, and Fighting Back by Jackie Speier, reprinted under a license arrangement originating with Amazon Publishing.

Iwas 28, lying on a dusty airplane runway in the Guyanese jungle, and dying.

It was just a matter of time. Five bullets had ripped through me, devastating the right side of my body. Behind the wheel of an airplane, I waited for the shooting to stop and said my Act of Contrition, praying for forgiveness and waiting for the lights to go out.” 

“November marks 40 years since Jim Jones, leader of the Peoples Temple, orchestrated the mass killing of more than 900 people in the jungle of Guyana at a place he called Jonestown. Rep. Jackie Speier of California, who was there that day and details her memories of being left to die in a new book, “Undaunted,” joins TODAY to share her story.” 
Source:TODAY Show- Representative Jackie Speier (Democrat, California) on the TODAY Show. 

From the Today Show

Almost 30 years before Jackie Speier was elected to the U.S. House herself and elected to the seat that her former boss Representative Leo Ryan represented in the San Francisco area, she was one of Representative Ryan's Congressional aides. A very young 28 year old aide who was part of Representative Ryan's Congressional delegation along with some reporters and other personal from NBC News, that were asked by constituents who had relatives that were part of Reverend Jim Jones's Jonestown in Guyana, South America.

Source:New York Post- U.S. Representative Jackie Speier, on Jonestown 
Anyone who is familiar with Reverend Jim Jones and his People's Temple first in San Francisco and then later in Guyana, know who they were. They were part of a left-wing religious cult, that wanted to a better life and world for themselves who believed that America was too racist, selfish, and materialistic, and wanted to create their own socialist paradise. That's what Reverend Jim Jones preached to his followers in San Francisco. What he didn't mention at all is that the number one reason why he moved his cult from San Francisco to Guyana, is that he and The People's Temple were under investigation by San Francisco authorities and perhaps were about to get raided and even arrested for physically abusing members of the cult.

Representative Ryan and his Congressional crew including Jackie Speier, along with personal from NBC News like reporter Don Harris, went down to Guyana on a fact-finding mission to find out exactly what was going on there and to talk about the people who were there. And soon find out that people there were looking to escape and wanted help escaping. Similar to how desperate prison inmates would look to escape from prison. Except the Jonestown members weren't criminals, but good and innocent people who simply fell for what Jim Jones was preaching and fell into his murderous trap. And were literally ready to risk their lives in order to escape Jonestown. 

You can also see this post on WordPress.

You can also see this post at FreeState MD, on Blogger.

John F. Kennedy Liberal Democrat

John F. Kennedy Liberal Democrat
Source: U.S. Senator John F. Kennedy in 1960