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Praetorian Progressives and Their Imperial Dreams March 15, 2012

Posted by Dr. Robert Owens in Politics.
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Under President Obama we doubled-down in Afghanistan?  We sent more of our fellow citizens to a long hard slog in a country whose synonym is Quagmire while announcing the eventual date of their withdrawal at the same time.  In an unprecedented action Mr. Obama announced our attack as he heralded our retreat in a calculated political decision that has cost lives, squandered treasure and told the Taliban to wait in the wings for the second act.

 

As our economy was being outsourced, our debt monetized, and our infrastructure crumbled we meekly followed the leader deeper into a thankless nation-building campaign in the Little Bighorn of nations.  A nation that is more of a Western construct than an actual nation-state, and the tribes which inhabit this mountainous waste have resisted and foiled every empire from Alexander to Moscow.

 

There is a fundamental difference between a republic and an empire.  Republics are based upon the consent of the governed.  Empires are imposed from above.  Republics foster a community of equals each with the opportunity to achieve.  Empires exalt the ruling class at the expensive of everyone else.  Though settled by European kingdoms seeking empires the United States wasn’t founded to become an empire.  Individuals fought against the empire building tyrants until their determination and resolve won independence against all odds.

 

It is time to re-think America’s international military commitments.  It is our world wide web of foreign commitments and entanglements that has been used by the self-righteous Progressives and their cronies in the military industrial complex in their efforts to transform the United States from republic to empire.  They have used the never ending wars for peace to regiment our society and create a centrally-planned bureaucratic mega government.

 

George Washington warned us to avoid foreign entanglements telling us, “It is our true policy to steer clear of permanent alliances with any portion of the foreign world…”  He warned us about allowing the military to grow to big, “Over grown military establishments are under any form of government inauspicious to liberty, and are to be regarded as particularly hostile to republican liberty.”

 

Thomas Jefferson outlined the essential principles of our government which included this advice concerning foreign affairs, “peace, commerce, and honest friendship with all nations entangling alliances with none.”

 

For the first 100 years of our existence we followed Washington’s great rule, “The great rule of conduct for us in regard to foreign nations is in extending our commercial relations, to have with them as little political connection as possible.”

 

The temptation to empire captured the American imagination in the 1890s: the beginning of the Progressive Era.  This was a time when Europe was rushing to gobble up the last places open for colonization or carving up those areas unsuited for colonies into spheres of influence.

 

Under President McKinley the United States entered the scramble for colonies in the Spanish-American War winning Puerto Pico and the Philippines as well as a long war against those in the Philippines who wanted the independence they had expected when liberated from the Spanish Empire by the American Republic.

 

Teddy Roosevelt the great grandfather of the Progressives followed McKinley walking softly while carrying a big stick in the form of the Great White Fleet.  He used America’s new found industrial might and military power for multiple intrusions into the sovereignty of Latin American countries.  While better known for his war against business, or trust busting as it was then called, the first President Roosevelt extolled war as a means to national greatness, “No triumph of peace is quite so great as the supreme triumph of war”

 

After being re-elected on the promise to keep America neutral President Wilson proclaimed America must fight to “Make the World Safe for Democracy.”  An adventure which cost over 300,000 casualties and which actually expanded the empires of England, France, and Japan while sowing the seeds of an even greater war.

 

After Wilson’s war the Congress of the United States re-asserted control by rejecting the international entanglements of the League of Nations Treaty returning to the traditional American foreign policy of freedom of trade and freedom of action.

 

Under FDR America fought an undeclared naval war against Germany in 1940 and 41 and imposed draconian embargoes against Japan prior to Pearl Harbor.  Once we were attacked we had to defend ourselves.  However, when World War II ended with the defeat of German, Italian, and Japanese totalitarianism and the vast expansion of Soviet totalitarianism, the guiding light of America foreign policy seems to have been permanently extinguished.

 

As the British Empire sailed into the sunset we filled the void taking up the role of leader of the West in the Cold War. For forty-six years we faced the Soviets until they collapsed.  Then instead of coming home we spread our wings even further embracing Eastern Europe.  We made a vain promise to send young Americans to fight for Estonia and Slovakia.  We coaxed color-coded revolutions all around Russia while our allies moved the EU to the East.  All of this rebuffed the hand of the Russians and made them instead of friends bitter foes who realized America had exploited their weakness and attempted to surround them with enemies.  This is the exact scenario which has haunted Russian paranoid dreams for centuries.

 

It is against the traditional principles of American foreign policy to establish and maintain an empire of far-flung outposts.  Doing so has broken the bank and we cannot afford to be the Policeman of the world.  We cannot afford to build nations for people who don’t want them while allowing our own infrastructure to decay.  How did a peaceful nation of free citizens become the advocate of pre-emptive attack and endless occupation?  How much blood and treasure did we invest in Iraq and what will be the result: a precipitous pull-out resulting in a Shi’a ally for Iran.

 

The war in Afghanistan was obviously defensive and retaliatory in nature given the Taliban’s support and collusion with Al Qaeda.  But ten years later what’s it all about?  Are we really dedicated to building a modern nation for tribal people who have no sense of nationhood?  Have we blundered into the same trap that brought the Soviets to their knees?

 

And it isn’t only our current hot deployment that is problematic.

 

The United States has armed forces in over 130 countries.  We’re committed to defend most of these countries against aggression.  Where were these allies on 9-11?  Where are they in Afghanistan?  Why do we have treaties binding us to go to war to defend those who refuse to support us when we’re attacked?  If these policies are counter-productive are there any alternatives?

 

Close the foreign bases and bring our troops home.  Sell the bases and save the money.  Station our troops on the borders to protect us from the on-going invasion of illegal immigrants who are overloading our systems. Let the maintenance of the bases and the spending of the troops contribute to our domestic economy instead of the economies of other countries.  If we need to project American power, use the carrier battle-groups designed for that purpose.  Protect America and rebuild our infrastructure.

 

When asked what to do with the American Military after World War I Will Rogers said, “Get ‘em all home, add to their number, add to their training, then just sit tight with a great feeling of security and just read about foreign wars. That’s the best thing in the world to do with them.”

 

We must jettison the Empire to save the Republic!  If we don’t the imperial power will swamp the republican nature.  We will retain the forms our Founders gave us as we find ourselves under the jackbooted heel of the Praetorian Progressives and their imperial dreams.

 

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, and Religion for Southside Virginia Community College.  He is the Historian of the Future and the author of the History of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com © 2012 Robert R. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com  Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook or Twitter @ Drrobertowens

The Man Who Would Be King February 16, 2012

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In 114 BC, Rome was a democratic Republic.  Representatives elected by popular vote filled the Senate, and the Senate ran Rome.  The Empire was conquered in the name of the Senate and the People of Rome, symbolized by the ever present SPQR seen on every Roman standard in every gladiator movie you have ever watched.

At the beginning of the first century BC sovereignty in Rome resided in the People, which may have inspired the most famous attribution of sovereignty in American History, “We the People” as the proclaimed authors of the Constitution.  The power in republican Rome resided in the people.  In a revolution that was by then legendary, they had banished their kings and established themselves as a free republic where the people assembled together to elect the Senators, the magistrates, and made all major decisions such as whether or not to go to war.  And far beyond mere words much of what was early Rome was the target the Founding Fathers shot at when they established our later day republic.

And yet, by 14 AD, when Augustus died, popular elections were but a memory.  Power was no longer located in the people, or in their assemblies, or their representatives in the Senate, instead power was concentrated in an Imperial Palace which was guarded, unapproachable, and foreboding.

How did this revolution occur? What led the freedom loving Romans to lay down their liberty and put on the yoke of oppression?  Later Romans who longed for the freedom their ancestors had discarded pointed to 133 BC when a rich young man named Tiberius Gracchus bought his way into the office of Tribune, an executive position one step below magistrate that was meant to protect the interests of the poor.  Gracchus used his office to curry personal power by giving bread and circuses to the people paid for by the public treasury.  Eventually he hit on a very popular plan.  He proposed to seize the lands of the rich and give them to the poor and he imposed this under his own authority, an authority he lacked under the Roman constitution.  Later when he put himself forward for a second term in opposition to custom and law he was assassinated by a group of Senators.

Several generations of corrupt politicians using the same formula sought to buy personal power and popular adoration by looting the public treasury to give the people ever increasing benefits.  Finally another rich young ruler arose by the name of Julius Caesar.  He rose through various public offices eventually gaining the office of Proconsul or Governor of Gaul (France).  He knew that to be a true Roman hero and paramount leader he needed to be a successful conqueror, so that is what he spent the next nine years doing.  He conquered not only all of Gaul but much of central Europe even leading the first Roman expedition to Britain.  While he accomplishing this he sent back well written dispatches to Rome which were published and widely distributed recounting his bravery and skill as a general.

All of this was too much for his political rivals in Rome.  They gained enough votes to have him branded a traitor which meant little in Gaul where he had absolute power thanks to his well trained and veteran army.  His rivals promised his arrest and conviction if and when he returned to the capitol.  However Caesar was not to be denied so he compounded the accusations of his treason with a treasonable act leading his army across the Rubicon River to Rome.

With his troops behind him Caesar secured all power and after many adventures to suppress the forces loyal to the old order he had a compliant Senate elect him dictator for life.  As his grasp of power solidified it became clear his rule would be the end of the republic.  Breaking completely with tradition he began to wear purple, the color of royalty in public.   Finally when his chief Lieutenant, Anthony, publicly offered him a crown it was too much and just as with Gracchus one hundred years before, Caesar was assassinated by a group of senators.

Caesar was followed by Augustus, the first Emperor of Rome who was never called Emperor.  He was instead known by the republican sounding title of princeps, or first citizen.  Kings were hated in Rome.  The traditions of the Republic ran deep.  Both Gracchus and Caesar had been killed because people thought they would make themselves king.  The genius of Caesar’s nephew and successor was that Augustus made himself king in all but name while keeping the outward forms of the Republic.  The elections were rigged, the Senate only did what they were told, and the people were kept happy by giveaways from the public treasury and kept in line by a smothering blanket of laws and regulations.

Fast forward to the 20th century and two other would be kings include Mussolini who decreed that calendars in Italy should begin again with October 29, 1922 the date he assumed power as the first day of year one.  He proclaimed the Fascist Era was the dawn of a new age.  And Hitler who said his National Socialist Nazis would reign for a thousand years.

In America today we have a leader who campaigned on a platform of cutting taxes and regulations.  A man who when the economy melted down said if he didn’t solve the problem in three years he wasn’t worthy of a second term.  In a classic example of bait and switch he walked over his promises to restore American greatness and suddenly announced five days before the election that he would instead transform America.

Presidents are elected to preserve, protect and defend the constitution.  Nowhere in the job description does it mention anything about transforming America.  He was elected to do one job and decided instead to do another.  TARP was passed to clear the toxic assets out of the banks and restart the system but instead was used to seize controlling interests in AIG, GM and Chrysler and in general assert government ownership over a significant portion of the American economy.  The stimulus was passed to re-energize the economy but instead it became a gift bag for the President’s supporters and a slush fund for his re-election.

Mr. Obama, with the corporations once known as the major media clearing his way and covering his tracks, compares himself to Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, FDR, Reagan and God, ridicules those who cling to the old ways, and decrees that he can rule without Congress because he can’t wait.  His spending has impoverished future generations and will eventually sink the ship of state.  His foreign policy ignores our allies and empowers our enemies.  Instead of uniting our country to get out of the hole dug by generations of failed Progressive boondoggles and giveaways he incites class warfare while the welfare rolls expand daily.

Whether we are dealing with one man devoted to personal aggrandizement or merely a teleprompter reading front man for a well-oiled CABAL we are face to face with someone who has been positioned by the generosity of American voters to do irreparable damage to our nation.  We have one last chance to save the republic as we have known it.  The Republicans who operate as the other half of the party of power seek to nominate another big government operator who promises little more than driving us to the poor house a little slower with new wars along the way.

What we need is a man who will work as president to re-impose the limits of the constitution. We need a man who will educate Americans as to what a constitutional government is and what it should do and not do.  We need a leader who will reverse course and take us back to the days of individual liberty, personal freedom, and economic liberty. We need a leader who isn’t afraid to jettison the empire to save the republic.  Now is the time for such a leader. If only enough Americans will recognize the signs of the times and rally round the flag they will still call it America.

Just as the Rome of Caligula and Nero still called itself a republic so too in the coming era of Progressive centralization and control will our beloved country still be America.  The Constitution will remain on display in Washington.  However, in the world turned upside down liberty will be circumscribed by political correctness and freedom will be defined by government regulations.  Our schools and media will assure us that we are the most free and prosperous nation on earth while other countries that have gained their freedom pass us by.  History as it is taught in America today tries to tell us that socialism works.  It doesn’t.  It leads to a stunted, shabby future where everyone sinks to the level of the lowest common denominator.  What we need is a rebirth of republicanism with a small “r” and a big dream.

Keep the faith.  Keep the peace.  We shall overcome.

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, and Religion for Southside Virginia Community College.  He is the Historian of the Future and the author of the History of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com © 2012 Robert R. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com  Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook or Twitter @ Drrobertowens

 

If We Don’t Win We Lose February 2, 2012

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America’s slide from the forefront of freedom to the swamp of collectivist social engineering didn’t start with the current manager of our decline and his Cavalcade of Czars.  It didn’t start with President Obama’s favorite foil and arch-nemesis the man the Corporations-Once-Known-as-the Mainstream-Media love to hate, George Bush, the Younger.  It didn’t start with the Bush-Clinton decade + 2 of continuous government growth, its thousand points of light or its thousand points of light or its Hillarycare.

Even Ronaldus Magnus, the last good President left Washington bigger than he found it.

Jimmy Carter not only walked in the Inaugural Parade he walked us into the grip of a Department of Energy that works tirelessly to limit our energy production and a Department of Education that presides over the greatest decline in education in world History.   He chastised us in his malaise speech about our crisis of confidence never realizing it was our confidence in him not our country that was hobbling America.  And what was his advice?  Should we work harder, invent more, or launch out in bold new ways?  No he suggested we wear sweaters and turn the heat down.  Managing the decline has long been the theme song of those who see America’s glory days in the rearview mirror instead of in the headlights as we travel towards the future.

What about Nixon?  Forget about it!  He gave us price controls, OSHA, and the EPA.  He took us off the gold standard and left us at the mercy of the Federal Reserve, all this from the conservative wing of the Dualocracy which is the bi-polar Party of Power.

Lyndon Johnson and his Great Society, Medicare, Medicaid, and Food Stamp revolution created the entitlement monsters which are poised to devour the budget.

Though he cut taxes to spur the economy, Kennedy with his phony missile gap and foreign policy blunders did little besides set the stage for Johnson.

Eisenhower spent eight years guiding the construction of the Military Industrial Complex he warned us about as he left the stage.

The Fair Deal was merely Truman’s election driven attempt to increase the size, scope, and power of FDR’s New Deal which was a massive and unprecedented intrusion of the central government into the economic and social life of America.

FDR was the 20th century poster boy when it comes to stretching the size of government and putting the stamp of entitlement as the cause on liberty’s death certificate.

Hoover, contrary to FDR’s story line and the accepted version of America’s History, responded to the stock market crash with a massive extension of government and its programs.  The Great Engineer, as he was known before his name became a household word for failed presidency, was a champion of government intervention, and though today his devotion to the tenets of laissez-faire are blamed for the depression when it was instead his federal interference that provided a deep recession for FDR to turn into the Great Depression.

Silent Cal Coolidge was America’s last limited President.  He limited himself and stayed with the confines of the Constitution.

Harding tried but died.

Wilson used the War he bragged of keeping us out of as the excuse to arrest and detain citizens, seize control of the economy, foster segregation and racism, and generally slap the cuffs of a greatly expanded central government on America’s wrists.

Taft was Teddy Roosevelt’s handpicked successor.  And although he continued the Progressive agenda of attacking business and expanding government he didn’t do enough.  So Roosevelt broke him and his presidency running against him splitting the Republican vote and opening the door for the Progressive Democrat Wilson.

Teddy was the grandfather of them all.  His trust busting interventionism was Progressivism personified.

Though this may be the litany of the current gang of statists who are poised to smother freedom, the struggle to keep constitutionally limited government, personal liberty, and economic freedom alive has been one long series of attack defenses declines and rebirths.

The second President, John Adams, was a man who helped write the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.  He was a man who worked tirelessly for the ratification of the Constitution, and passed and signed the Alien and Sedition Acts under which he arrested people who criticized him, his administration or his policies.  From there it goes on and on.

Jefferson compromised his beliefs about the limited power of the central government and purchased Louisiana without Constitutional authority, a good deal but a bad precedent.   Monroe committed America to defending the entire Western Hemisphere. Polk sent American troops into territory internationally recognized as part of Mexico and then asked for a declaration of war when Mexican troops fired on those troops.  Lincoln suspended the right of habeas corpus whenever he needed to in order to maintain the Union though the Constitution does not grant that power to the Federal Government. The 10th Amendment strictly prohibits the Federal Government from having any powers not expressly delegated to it, and at least one state, Virginia, in their ratification convention expressly considered the Union voluntary and reserved the right to secede.

From one battle to another America’s freedom fighters have stood before the Leviathan of Central Government and clung relentlessly to the promises first set forth in the founding document of the United States of America, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”  Considering that these uplifting and timeless words of human liberty were penned by a slaveholder and that it took four score and nine years for this stain to be removed from our nation we can see that our road away from serfdom has always been one of fits and starts.

Today we face the next great challenge.  Progressivism, America’s current variation on the age-old theme of government knows best is poised to break the bounds of limited government, regiment the people, and smother the economy.  After more than one hundred years of incremental growth in just three years the promises of hope and change have broken the bank and mortgaged the future.  One more term of this profligate spending and oppressive regulations and they will kill the golden goose.

The forces of freedom cannot afford to lose this next election to the purveyors of class warfare and division.  If we do this great experiment in limited government, personal liberty and economic liberty will have progressed from a new country on the margins of civilization to the greatest power the world has ever known, to just another socially engineered centrally planned economically shackled democracy voting itself benefits it can’t afford.

Our adversaries believe they have stacked the deck by taking control of both major political parties which operate as two wings on the same bird of prey.  They hope by nominating a Progressive in both parties there will be no way for the forces of freedom to prevail.

Our ranks are filled with those who have been in the trenches for a lifetime and are weary of the fight.  They have been joined by the recently awakened who know little of the history and less of the tactics.  Our opposition is comprised of the slickest, best funded, and most corrupt professional politicians, labor barons, and crony capitalists the world has ever seen with thousands of Occupy storm troopers thrown in for good measure.  The odds are against us.  The smart money is betting on the victory of the all-powerful government, lining up to get their deals and haul away the loot.

The odds have always been against us.  We fought the greatest empire in the world to gain our freedom.  We have persevered and prevailed against plot after plot to extinguish the light of liberty and in this battle too we must remember that the one we should never be forgotten told us long ago, “if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”

Yes, the blood of more than 54,000,000 innocent lives cry out for justice, yes we as a people have legalized what should be unlawful and condoned what should be condemned.  Yes, we have fallen from the high road and are weakened by an entitlement mentality and an addiction to entertainment.  But we are the American people.  We are, “We the People” and if we will but turn and acknowledge the one who has given us everything we have a chance.

The time is now.  The place is here.  We are the people we have been waiting for.  We must rise to the occasion.  We must win this battle because if we don’t win we lose.

Keep the faith.  Keep the peace.  We shall overcome.

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, and Religion for Southside Virginia Community College.  He is the author of the History of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com © 2012 Robert R. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com  Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook or Twitter @ Drrobertowens

 

Now is the Time! January 26, 2012

Posted by Dr. Robert Owens in Politics.
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Sarah Palin was just about to drag the Progressive John McCain over the finish line.  Then the economy collapsed and Senator McCain suspended his campaign to fly back to Washington and add his, “Me too” as President Bush said, “I’ve abandoned free-market principles to save the free-market system.”  An economic downturn, a weak contender, and unpopular never-ending wars let Barak Obama win the presidency with vague promises of hope and change.

I personally met people who voted for Mr. Obama because they thought he was for lower taxes.  Ones who thought he was pro-business.  I even met people who voted for him because they thought he was pro-life.  His blank slate promises were interpreted by many to be whatever they thought they wanted.  He was the “Anyone would be better than what we have now” candidate.  Combine that with some of the best political theater in American History, slick advertising, a complicit media and a community organizer from the most corrupt community in the country becomes the most powerful man in the world.

The information about who Mr. Obama is, where he comes from, and what he stands for was readily available before the election to anyone interested enough to look.  Instead of researching, a majority of voters relying on television ads and sound bites, disgusted with the way the country was going under Bush the Younger, decided to give the unknown and untried man from Chicago a chance.

Flash forward three years and many of those who thought they could vote for anyone and the country would survive realize they may have placed that bet once too often.  It is now obvious for all to see Barack Obama is a strident left wing ideologue who applies the political strategies of the late Chicago communist Saul Alinsky, strategies he used to teach his followers in Chicago.  He uses the Bully Pulpit to advance a radical agenda of class warfare.  He is at war with capitalism and dedicated to spreading the wealth around.  Our President is no longer hiding behind vague platitudes.  He is no longer trying to sell us a pig-in-a-poke.  Instead he is now trying to sell us a societal bridge to nowhere as he campaigns openly on transforming America into a country based on centrally-planed redistribution and social planning as he channels the grandfather of Progressivism: Teddy Roosevelt.

The gloves are off.  The false fronts have been discarded, and we have come face-to-face with the ultimate goal of the Progressive agenda: an America that has evolved past the Constitution leaving limited government, personal liberty, and economic freedom as mere memories.  A new America confined by regulations and intimidated by an ever more intrusive security apparatus.  A new America hostile to Christianity where being successful invites attack.

If President Obama wins re-election with this blatant appeal to class warfare and interest group divisions with no need to worry about re-election and having already said he will impose his agenda without Congress, there will be no check and no balance.  He will claim a mandate to complete his vision for a completely transformed America.

Congress has already shown that it will not stand up to President Obama’s naked power grabs.  When he initiated an illegal war against Libya without even consulting Congress the perpetually re-elected did nothing.  When he made recess appointments while Congress was still in session the parties of power were silent.  Congress has legislated away their own power for years, passing vague laws and allowing bureaucrats to fill them in with legally binding regulations.  They have made themselves irrelevant, and we now have a President who is ready to rule without them.

The biggest question left concerning America’s ever accelerating slide into Progressivism’s version of socialism’s version of communism is whether or not there will be a real choice this November.  Will the Republican wing of the Party of Power nominate another Progressive: an Obama Lite? Or will the rank and file break through and nominate a candidate who stands for a return to Constitutional government?

The Media wing of the party of Power is working 24/7 to frame the debate and manage the primaries.  Every broadcast, every cable show builds up the candidates they favor and ignores or demeans the ones they find unacceptable.  Will the voters follow like sheep or will they think for themselves?  Will they affirm the choice of the big government social engineers or will they see the blinders used to focus their attention on the anointed candidates?

If there is no choice there will be no chance.  If there is a choice America may yet pull itself out of the decline we see all around us.  A return to limited government, personal liberty, and economic freedom would once again release the energy and creativity that made America the greatest nation in the History of the world.  A renunciation of collectivism, class warfare, and social engineering will once again open the door for a return to morning in America.  The re-election of President Obama will mean a solidification of his transformed America and a shabby darkness will settle over the land.

We who seek a return to limited government must look at the candidates, discern which one has a consistent record of supporting constitutional government, and then we must use every opportunity to influence others to unite behind that candidate.  If we don’t this may be our last chance to stop the Progressive transformation of America before they lead us into the dreary dead end of their collectivist dystopia.  Now is the time for all good Americans to come to the aid of the country, or as Ronald Reagan once said, “If not us – who?”  If not now – when?”

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, and Religion for Southside Virginia Community College.  He is the author of the History of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com © 2012 Robert R. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com  Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook or Twitter @ Drrobertowens

 

Can Freedom Survive or Is the Fix In? January 12, 2012

Posted by Dr. Robert Owens in Politics.
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The Republicans have a habit of nominating moderates who have served the Party well, or as the Soviets called them apparatchiks, or as they are called in Chicago Ward Heelers, or as they are called everywhere else Hacks.  That is how they ended up with Bob Dole and John McCain.  They had run for the nomination before and lost.  They were loyal soldiers who then went on to support the nominee.  And now, it was their turn.  That is not a very convincing campaign argument: “It’s my turn.”

Another foolproof system employed by the Progressive Republican leadership is to let their friends in the Corporations Once Known as the Mainstream Media set the agenda and choose their candidate.  The debates these Corporations hold are aimed at causing division and starting intramural fights, and the Republicans fall for it every time.  The Progressive Media loved John McCain.  He was their “Maverick.”  They just couldn’t get enough of his “reaching across the aisles” until he had won the nomination, then he was the enemy.  It was the same thing with Dole.  Now they tell us every day that Romney is the only one who has a chance to beat Obama.  They just keep loving on Romney, can’t get enough of Mitt.  Just wait until he is the nominee and see how fast he becomes the Wall Street fat cat who plundered millions of dollars and laid waste to middleclass lives.

With their 24/7 news cycle and group-think barrage of negative reinforcement the media seeks to disqualify those they fear and promote those who will maintain the status quo.

Sarah Palin was disqualified because she is damaged goods due to media attacks that were over-the-top in viciousness.  The Progressives simply couldn’t allow a woman to rise to prominence that had really built her own career and accomplished things without riding on her husband’s coattails or worshipped at the idol of the pro-abortion sisterhood.  That would have jeopardized their grip on the gender gap.

Gary Johnson was dis-invited to most of the Media sponsored and Progressive controlled debates.  He was ignored during the few debates he was invited to attend.  His poll numbers were based on polls that didn’t include his name as a choice.   The Republican leadership turned such a cold shoulder to this successful two-term Governor he has left the Party and is seeking the Libertarian nomination for President.

In the last election cycle John McCain was the darling maverick of the Progressives and he valiantly led to a stunning defeat by a novice with obvious ties to radicals.

Ron Paul is marginalized and ridiculed because of his whacky far-out ideas and policies such as obeying the Constitution.  The Progressives can’t allow anyone to seriously consider a return to government created by a bunch of old dead white guys!  No way!  No how!  To them that is absurd, so at every mention of Dr. Paul’s name there is a snicker, a joke or at least a raised eyebrow.  On every network both cable and broadcast his name is constantly followed by the conventional wisdom, “He can’t possibly get the nomination” or “He could never win a general election.”  Thus Dr. Paul is condemned to only have people who actually listen to his positions and know the Constitution as supporters, and the powers-that-be are betting they are a minority in America today.

The talking heads of the ruling chatocracy tell us over and over that Representative Paul is unelectable.  They treat his legion of loyal supporters with derision and contempt.  They use loaded words like whacky and kooky to describe his positions.  In other words they treat Dr. Paul and his supporters with the same fear and loathing they heaped upon the Tea Party.  In the Paul campaign they see a real threat to their Neo-Con / Progressive stranglehold on power.  Every other candidate will perpetuate the reign of the military/industrial complex and its freedom smothering empire of foreign intervention and phony money.  If any other candidate wins it may mean cosmetic change, but it will also mean business as usual.  With any other candidate the looting and plundering continues.

Nothing reveals the truth more clearly than this obvious attempt to steer America away from the one candidate who seeks a return to the Constitution: a return to limited government, personal liberty and economic freedom.   And the greatest disappointment of all is Fox News.  The major networks and the other cable news outlets ceased being anything except mouthpieces for the Progressive Democratic Party years ago.  But Fox held out the promise of a fair and balanced approach.  Their news anchors and reporters tried to live up to their credo and report the news allowing their viewers to decide.  But in this case they have gleefully joined in the attempt to dismiss Representative Paul as a serious contender.

From their much respected former anchor and current chief political analyst Brit Hume, their chief political correspondent “Campaign” Carl Cameron to their current anchor Bret Baier this team which offered a hope of unbiased news uses every opportunity to malign and marginalize Ron Paul and his supporters.  In 2008 it was merely Cameron who used loaded terms and sneers to ridicule Dr. Paul.  In this election cycle the entire network has piled on the anti-Paul band wagon.  Watching the lead up to the first votes was evidence enough.  Though Ron Paul scored in double digits in every poll we were told it meant nothing.  When he was near the top of polls his name wasn’t even mentioned.  Now that voting has started when he places 3rd in Iowa and 2nd in New Hampshire it is treated as a curiosity, an anomaly as if all those voters had somehow pulled the wrong lever.  Shame on you Fox News for leaving fair and balanced behind.

The establishment does everything in its power to stop the one choice that might mean an end to their precipitous rush to the precipice of power.  They believe they neutered the Tea Party in 2011 when they turned the new majority in the House to the dark side sustaining the old leadership, passing the Patriot Act, and raising the debt limit.  They feel secure treating Ron Paul and his legions of supporters as kooks advancing unworkable ideas and antiquated principles.

Every election is important.  This one is for the soul of America.  Will we continue down the road to become just another social welfare democracy?  Will the greatest experiment in human freedom become a kleptocracy where the perpetually re-elected shovel out sweetheart deals to cronies as the cronies shovel back contributions to keep them in office?  Is our government just a huge money laundering scam with a printing press using a Ponzi scheme to keep the marks happy?  Are we fated to become the sacrificial lamb on the altar of avarice and greed?  The establishment says yes.  Their news media fellow travelers say yes.  What will we the people say?

Will we rise up and demand a return to limited government, personal liberty, and economic freedom, or will we the people meekly accept our assigned role as we the sheeple?  Will the descendants of the founders wake up and reclaim their heritage, or will we believe the Progressive line that constitutionally limited government is an unworkable idea and that life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness is an antiquated principle?

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, and Religion for Southside Virginia Community College.  He is the author of the History of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com © 2012 Robert R. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com  Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook or Twitter @ Drrobertowens

 

We Can Do This Unless We Don’t June 24, 2011

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If Alfred E. Newman with his “What me worry?” grin was President of the United States he couldn’t do a more pathetic imitation of leadership than we are currently witnessing in Chicago on the Potomac.

Dismissing the easy visuals of an out-of-touch Imperial President such as:

  • Playing golf more in two years than Bush did in eight. With over seventy rounds of eighteen holes in 2.5 years and more that eleven weekends in a row this year it makes one wonder if he’s practicing up for a second career perhaps taking Tiger Woods place once he leaves the White House.
  • The 2010 decision to skip the wreath laying ceremony at Arlington to make a pilgrimage to his political Mecca by the Lake,
  •  Joking about the failure of the 800+ billion dollar stimulus with his cronies at the ironically named Jobs Council when he quipped with his usual uh … uh … off-script eloquence and profundity, “Shovel-ready was not as … uh .. shovel-ready as we expected.”

These types of politically tone-deaf blunders are merely the insensitive actions of a self-indulgent prima donna on his way to a Jimmy Carter style one-term ejection and should surprise no one.   When you hire a novice to do a master-craftsman’s job don’t be surprised when the paint peels or the wood warps.

However, President Obama, even with the debt exploding, the economy imploding and  his poll numbers in free fall has a glimmer of hope for a surprise re-election commonly known as the Republican Party.

The re-treaded leadership in the House, which the new Tea Party majority-makers allowed to continue even after they handed the momentum back to the Progressives with the Lame-Duck Deal, seem determined to hand Mr. Obama a second term.  How can this be? One continuing resolution after another, a budget deal trading a real 1.6 trillion dollar deficit for phantom cuts, re-affirmation of the liberty-smothering Patriot Act, the soon-to-be vote to raise the debt limit, and the political hacks that pass for conservative leaders will prove it’s business as usual for the two-headed bird of prey that is America’s party of power.

The GOP needs the energy and votes of the Tea Party to win.  With a record of caving to the Progressives who will rally round the Republican flag?  Then there is the coming nominee.  Who will it be?  Will it be someone who could fire up the rank-and-file or will it be another in the long line of “It’s My Turn” RHINOs that the Party sets up to get knocked down?  Will Romney be the next McCain, the next Dole, or the next George H. W. Bush?  Will a Huntsman or a Pawlenty garner enough votes of Democrats voting in Republican primaries and thus win a plurality of the votes as McCain did?

Does the party of Reagan have the courage to nominate someone like Ron Paul who has the record to prove he stands by his limited-government positions?  Do the people who want their constitutionally limited government back have the sense to ignore the drone of the Corporations Once Known as the Mainstream Media and refuse to allow them to succeed in their efforts to make Sarah Palin over into anything but the winner she is?  Do they have the foresight to draft Chris Christie and demand that he run?  In other words do the Republicans have the political integrity to actually run a conservative or will they stick with the same old lackluster Progressive Lite that has spelled doom in the past?

President Obama is eminently beatable.  His successes: healthcare and financial reform were shoved through over the determined resistance of the American public.  His expansion of the wars and his support for the Arab Spring which is code for Islamist take-over has eroded our security.  His religious adherence to the Cloward-Piven Plan to collapse the economy as a means to fundamentally transform America has brought us to the brink of financial disaster.  And his in-your-face golf-while-Washington-burns party at the end of the age lifestyle has made him vulnerable to any candidate who will actually stand for everything the President is against.

The President may say he isn’t on the campaign trail but it would be more accurate to say he has never left the campaign trail except for weekends of golf, luxury vacations, and celebrity parties.  While he was far too busy running for the presidency and miss-managing the country for two years to release a reasonable facsimile of a birth certificate he always has time for important things like the Oprah Show or jetting across the country to glad hand donors.

We all know the President is an excellent campaigner, which according to himself was one of his chief qualifications for becoming President.  With his 2012 campaign headquartered in his adopted home of Chicago, the home of vote procurement procedures, and his goal to raise and spend one billion dollars there should be no doubt that his will be an energetic and effective campaign.

He may have the organization and he may have the money; however, what is the President’s strategy to overcome his record as the first President since Jimmy Carter determined to manage the decline of America instead of working to ensure its continued success?  How is he to convince the great majority of Americans that his program of reckless spending, apology tours, abandoning friends and embracing enemies is deserving of another four years?  The short answer is he can’t, and so he won’t.

President Obama, aided and abetted by the Progressive Media will pretend the economy is recovering or that prosperity is just around the corner.  They will tell the voters we can’t change horses in the middle of the stream.  The storyline will be, “You may be out of a job and waiting to be foreclosed on but it could be worse and it’s getting better.”  I predict this has about as much chance of working as convincing a Steve Jobs worshipping Apple Devotee that a PC really is better.  So what’s the President going to do?

I believe his only chance for a second term is to either use the media and primary cross-voters to help the Republicans nominate the next “It’s my turn” loser or to split the conservative vote.  The Progressive Media will do all they can to promote a like-minded left-wing RHINO ala-McCain, but if the Tea Party wing has enough juice to nominate Ron Paul or Michelle Bachmann or enough power to draft Palin or Christie I predict there will be a pseudo conservative third party candidate even if the DNC has to finance it.

Four more years of managed decline without a re-election to restrain him and President Obama’s transformational vision of America as just another country may become more than just the content of his latest apology or the lesson taught to our children in public schools.  It may become the shabby reality we will have to endure and the shameful remnant we leave to our grandchildren.  We must stay united, stay focused, and work together for the restoration of America.  We can’t let divisions divide us anymore.  We can do this unless we don’t.

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, and Religion for Southside Virginia Community College.  He is the author of the History of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com View the trailer for Dr. Owens’ latest book @ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ypkoS0gGn8 © 2011 Robert R. Owens dr.owens@comcast.net  Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook.

 

Where’s the Outrage? May 26, 2011

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In the best line of a lackluster campaign Bob Dole challenged the voters who were swallowing the liberal line of the Corporations Once Known as the Mainstream Media.  At the time they were carrying the water for Bill Clinton in the 1996 election.  By that time Mr. Clinton’s Bimbo Eruptions and complete lack of ethics had become common knowledge but the unengaged in fly-over country were lapping up the Clinton mantra “Character Doesn’t Matter” and preparing to not vote in droves.

Today we face a crisis that is more pertinent to the beating heart of American liberty than whether or not the President is or is not a morally challenged serial abuser of women or what “is” means.  Today we again face a challenge that was also presented to us by Mr. Clinton twelve years ago when he waged in an unconstitutional wag-the-dog air war against Yugoslavia that even some of his supporters speculated was more about diverting attention from his Oval Office escapades than anything else.

This re-run of Clinton’s war by decree prompts this writer to ask: Who has the right to commit America to war?  Who has the right to send our soldiers into harm’s way?  Does America go to war by the act of Congress or by the whim of the Executive?

In this matter, which strikes at the heart of the American Experiment no one in Congress, except Ron Paul and Dennis Kucinich, two polar opposites from the right and the left, had the integrity to ask these questions.  The media totally abdicated its watchdog role.  This is a matter that should be at the forefront of the consciousness of the American people.  We should have risen up and demanded an explanation.  But instead, since our Congressional leaders ignored it and the media treated the only two elected officials who did speak out as if they wore aluminum hats, our fellow citizens hit the mental snooze button, and rolled over to watch a reality show so they could ignore reality.

On March 19, 2011 President Obama’s administration declared war on Libya by launching 112 Tomahawk missiles at targets within the country.  I say the administration declared war because the United States Congress was not consulted.  Congressional leaders weren’t even advised of these acts of war until 90 minutes before the bombs started falling.  And this was not really consultation. Rep. Mike Rogers (R-MI), the chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, said “I wouldn’t call it consultation as much as laying it out.”  He [President Obama]had spent time consulting with the U.N. and the Arab League but he couldn’t be bothered with consulting the United States Congress?  Which brings me back to the quote from Bob Dole, “Where’s the outrage?”

The Constitution in Article One Section Eight ever wary of giving the executive too much power gave Congress the exclusive power to declare war.  Ever since Harry Truman decided for domestic political reasons to call a war in Korea that cost 54,229 American lives a Police Action our Presidents have followed the guns and butter policies of peace at home and war abroad.  However; Johnson, Bush I, and Bush II  sought and received Congressional approval before committing America to war in all but name.  Only “Where is the Outrage” Clinton presumed to have the power to wage war by Executive Order.

Today we are faced with an out of control administration that believes it can involve America in a war on the whim of the executive instead of the act of Congress.  They pointed towards the War Powers Act as a fig leaf to cover their actions.  This administration is headed by a lawyer and filled with lawyers, and yet they presumably did not know that the War Powers Act specifically says, “The constitutional powers of the President as Commander-in-Chief to introduce United States Armed Forces into hostilities, or into situations where imminent involvement in hostilities is clearly indicated by the circumstances, are exercised only pursuant to (1) a declaration of war, (2) specific statutory authorization, or (3) a national emergency created by attack upon the United States, its territories or possessions, or its armed forces.”  And it is clear that not one of the three circumstance explicitly named by the Act applied to the situation of our attack upon Libya.

The President has said he doesn’t need Congressional Approval, Corporations Once Known as the Mainstream Media repeats that the President has the authority, and the Justice Department says the president has all the authority he needs for the war in Libya.

However, due to President Obama’s clear circumvention of Congressional approval and his egregious and erroneous appeal to the War Powers Act, I am stating categorically that his attack upon Libya is an abuse of executive power and an unconstitutional action.  This is not my opinion alone.  Many Americans from constitutional law experts to his own liberal Democrats are beginning to say the same thing, which brings me back to the quote from Bob Dole, “Where’s the outrage?”

If this is a blatant abuse of power and an unconstitutional act leading to war I also say this rises to the level of an impeachable offense.  In this I find myself standing for the first time with the most liberal Democrats.  And in another departure from tradition I am also in agreement with Vice President Joe Biden when he said, “launching an attack without congressional approval is an impeachable offense.”   No matter what the administration says, no matter what the media says, we the people need to hold those who would violate the constitutional limitations of our government to account or they will continue to transgress the limits and do whatever they want.

In another quote that seems as relevant today as it was fifteen years ago Senator Dole asked, ”When do the American people rise up and say, ‘Forget the media in America! We’re going to make up our minds! You’re not going to make up our minds!’ This is about saving our country!”

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, and Religion for Southside Virginia Community College.  He is the author of the History of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com View the trailer for Dr. Owens’ latest book @ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ypkoS0gGn8 © 2011 Robert R. Owens dr.owens@comcast.net  Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook.

The Unconventional Convention October 10, 2010

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I’ve just returned from the largest Tea Party Convention ever held, the Virginia Tea Party Patriots Convention. As a person who has attended more political conventions than I can remember I can testify this was an unconventional convention.

The motto of the Convention was “The Constitution Still Matters.” I found this sad. Sad that those in the America of 2010, the America controlled by the Obama-Pelosi-Reid triumvirate people feel the need to proclaim this as if it’s a radical or shocking statement, “The Constitution Still Matters.” I feel it’s especially sad that while in the hearts and minds of these thousands of fired-up America loving patriots this may be true, but at the same time the actions and even the words of our elitist leaders make it obvious that to them the Constitution doesn’t matter at all.

But what was so unconventional about this convention?
It was pointedly non-partisan and organized by regular people: citizens who’ve stepped away from their lives as homemakers, small engine repair mechanics, and entrepreneurs to organize and lead a grass-roots movement that’s just weeks away from fundamentally transforming Washington D. C. These patriot community organizers are about to show many of the professionals the door as they overwhelm the midterm polls in a tsunami of indignation.

Senator George Allen recommended the States quit accepting Federal subsidies as a way to avoid the strings attached. He also advocated for a Constitutional Amendment stating that when 3/4 of the States determine any Federal law, policy or regulation unconstitutional it would become null and void. He pointed out the abdication by Congress of the legislative power granted them under the Constitution that empowers unelected bureaucrats with the power to control the economic and personal lives of America. He called for people to demand that our representatives represent them and take back their delegated authority. Senator Allen added it’s time the American people get to decide how they want to be taxed. Whether by the IRS using a maze of laws even the people who write them can’t understand or by a flat tax that treats everyone the same. His final points of ending lifetime appointments for Federal Judges and with-holding Congressional pay if they fail to pass a budget got everyone out of their seats applauding their approval.

Senator Rick Santorum told the crowd they should feel blessed to live in a time when America needs them. There have been generations of American who could live their lives in blissful silence knowing liberty and opportunity would be there for their children and their grandchildren. This is not such a time. This is a generation called out of slumber to sacrifice for the nation. Sacrifice their repose for the rebirth of freedom. The Greatest Generation became the Greatest Generation because they were willing to stand up when it came time to sacrifice, and now it is the turn of this present generation to do what has to be done. Senator Santorum cautioned the crowd that they cannot expect the return of limited government to be accomplished in one election. When 2010 turns over Congress he reminded everyone that until there’s a change in the White House nothing will get done. America can’t change the change until the administration changes. He predicted that by the fall of 2011 President Obama will be threatening to shut down the Federal Government unless the new Republican Congress bows to his will. That’s when everyone who supported the Tea Party insurgents needs to stand shoulder to shoulder and not blink as the class of 94 did on their way to becoming the New Elite. He urged everyone to stay active, to remain vigilant holding the feet of the people soon to replace so many to the fire. Make sure they do what they said they would do, or be ready to replace them in 2012.

Representative Steve King of Iowa drew shouts and cheers when he said we were facing a Constitutional Demolition Crew in Washington and that we needed to demand that every act of Congress have a preamble explaining which enumerated power in the Constitution specifically authorized the bill.

Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli of Virginia delivered a message highlighting the assault being waged on Federalism. He urged all there to educate themselves in American History. To study the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, because we don’t want to eliminate the opposition we want to convert them. He brought out the non-partisan nature of this movement when he stated there would be no Tea Party if the Republicans had remembered they were supposed to be the party of limited government.

Congressman Ron Paul brought his message of limited government and sound money eliciting a succession of standing Os. His call for an end to the IRS was greeted with unabashed enthusiasm and approval.

Lou Dobbs said the leadership we’re now enduring isn’t worthy of the American people. He asked, will the people work for the government or will the government work for the people. He declared he’s seen a rising tide of Americans who’re telling Washington the arrogant elitism we’ve endured will no longer be tolerated. He said all these people working together can reclaim respect for this country, its people, and its institutions. When he pointed out that he’d been as vocal a critic of Bush as he is of Obama the crowd roared their appreciation for a non-partisan love of America. Dobbs urged everyone to count themselves as Patriots who’ll work to return America to prosperity as citizens who refuse to abide a President who ignores the power of opportunity as the engine of success.

Yes, this was an unconventional convention. It was wonderfully organized and encouraging. Yes, Virginia there will be another morning in America once the Progressive led mourning for America is over. Let us engage in the public arena giving no ground to the ideologues of the right or the left, vigilant of our natural rights, and determined that we will preserve them for our posterity.

By the way Governor Chris Christie of New Jersey won the Straw poll for President, Sarah Palin came in second and Ron Paul came in third.

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, and Religion for Southside Virginia Community College and History for the American Public University System. http://drrobertowens.com © 2010 Robert R. Owens dr.owens@comcast.net

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