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Education is the Foundation of the Future August 16, 2012

Posted by Dr. Robert Owens in Politics.
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Have you ever asked yourself, “How can Progressives like President Obama hate America?  How can anyone who was raised in the most free and prosperous society in the History of the world believe America is an imperialistic power and the source of evil?”

If we can’t understand our adversary we may defeat them, but we will never know what it is that motivated them.  This lack of understanding leaves us open to assault by the same forces in the future.   If we wish not only to defeat Barack Obama and the forces of Progressivism in the November elections but also to set America on the path to restoration we must understand the root cause of the Progressive delusion and modern Liberalism which Michael Savage has correctly labeled a mental illness, and I consider a Socially Transmitted Disease.

If you want to understand something it is necessary to learn where it came from and how it came to be.  Even if President Obama was educated partially in his adopted country of Indonesia he is a prime example of the assembly-line progressive education that has become the norm in America today: bash America at every chance and cram the idea of a living constitution and the necessity for government intervention in every aspect of daily life.

We’ve all heard horror stories of the anti-American bilge being pumped into our youth in today’s schools, so the following personal experiences shouldn’t shock anyone too much.

As an educator I participated in a program that combined college and high school classes so that students could earn credit towards their high school diploma and at the same time work on an Associate Degree. I was happy to work in this program, and I helped many hard working students earn their Associates at the same time they earned their high school diploma giving them a decided advantage when they went on for their Bachelor degree.

During the course of my years in the trenches of blended education I was in control of the college side of the class; however, I had no authority to stop the blatant dissemination of Progressive propaganda that made up the totality of some teachers’ curriculum.  While in the classroom I strive to present material in such a way as to lead students in the direction of critical thinking.  I would present both sides and urge students to evaluate and come to their own conclusions.  Many times after a semester of teaching Political Science students would come up and ask, “Now that the class is over tell us, which are you a conservative or a liberal?”

Many of my high school teacher colleagues were not so subtle.  Here are two examples that were more the rule than the exception in many classes:

  1. One Political Science class had the following assignment; watch Fahrenheit 9/11by Michael Moore and then write an essay on how many ways President Bush lied to trick America into an unjust war.
  2. In a History class the students were assigned to read Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle and then write an essay on the dehumanizing effects of capitalism.

The list of such blatant and crude attempts to mold our children into good little Progressives that I witnessed would fill a book on how not to teach, but this is nothing new.  I am sixty three years old and though not as out-in-the-open or in-your-face I was subjected to the same type of illiberal liberalism when I was a youngster in school.

In grade school I did encounter one History teacher who had been in the profession since before my father was born.  She still thought it a good thing to teach American History as an objective subject instead of a vehicle for her own agenda.   She inspired students to look at the evidence and think.  She however was the exception.  From Math to English, from Geography to History teachers were constantly extolling the benefits of government social programs and depicting America as a world-class bully marching around imposing its will on poor little nations that couldn’t protect themselves.

In high school I was suspended for accusing a Social Studies teacher of being a communist.  Years later he admitted that he in fact had been a communist since the forties.  Another teacher rejected any History paper that he felt was too patriotic which he dismissed as jingoism.  A teacher of Russian spent more time in class extolling the virtues of the USSR than teaching the language.  When I complained about this forty five minute daily propaganda session I was again suspended.  All of this took place back in the 1960s.  This isn’t a new problem.

The Progressives realized long ago that if they could take over the nation’s education system they could raise up generations of Americans with no conception of the uniqueness of America as the world’s bastion of freedom and liberty.  Today we see the fruit of this campaign: legions of voters ready to throw away our heritage for a government check.  The descendants of the Founders are willing to surrender their freedom to strive for the best in exchange for the security of just enough to get by.

So as the wisest woman I have ever known, my wife asks me, “What can we do now?”

Back in the early 90s we decided that what we needed to do was go to school so that we could become teachers.  Neither of us wants to impose our ideas on others, but we do want to present the materials in an objective manner and help our students acquire the critical thinking skills necessary to be informed citizens.  Whenever a student asks me to figure out what their grade is during a semester I tell them, “If you give a man a fish he will eat for a day.  If you teach him to fish he can eat forever.”  I then proceed to teach them how to find an average and how to translate that into a letter grade.

What can we do now?  We can’t all become teachers but we can all become involved in our local school boards.  We can all do our due diligence and find out what is being taught at our local schools, and we can follow the procedures to correct what is wrong and implement what is right.  One thing is for sure if we do not regain control of our schools we will lose the future.  Our leaders are leading us down the primrose path to collectivism.  Our education establishment is conditioning America to accept it.  Step-by-step, inch-by-inch we have strayed from a federal republic operating on democratic principles with liberty and justice for all to a centralized bureaucracy dispensing cradle-to-grave loot taken from producers and redistributed to non-producers.  We may have gotten here step-by-step but we are not too many steps away from one step too many.  Barack Obama has stated that his goal is to fundamentally transform America.  From stimulus slush finds, shadow governments, and imperial edicts he is systematically remaking us into a centralized state based on social democracy and wealth redistribution.

In 1962 the leader of the socialist slave camp we knew as the USSR, Nikita Khrushchev, said “The United States will eventually fly the Communist red flag…The American people will raise it themselves.  We can’t expect the American People to jump from Capitalism to Communism, but we can assist their elected leaders in giving them small doses of Socialism, until they awaken one day to find that they have Communism.”

Education has led the way to this precipice and only education can lead our way back.  If we don’t learn from our mistakes and once again begin building up America through education we may learn that Khrushchev was right.

Did we win the Cold War defeating an enemy dedicated to our destruction to end up proving the wisdom of a cartoon character, “We have met the enemy and he is us”?

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


Real Hope for a Change September 9, 2011

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Hope and change were the magic words that swept a relatively unknown, inexperienced Barack Obama into the Oval Office. He campaigned as the one able to fix the Bush economy. Once in office he has protested that he didn’t know how bad the economy was even though that was what he had run his campaign on. He has spent the majority of his first term blaming everyone for everything. His signature accomplishments, the stimulus, Obamacare and the Dodd-Frank financial reform have done more to hurt than help. Serial vacations and weekly golf outings aside, President Obama has worked hard and has so far managed to turn a recession into the Great Recession. Now he offers the opening salvo of his 2012 campaign economic platform and the message is, “More of the same” with no solution in sight.

The solution to our current malaise is not more of the same. It isn’t spreading the wealth around in a step-by-step slide into socialism. The solution isn’t even a return to the status quo as it stood before the current administration began its war on American exceptionalism. We cannot return to a system that alternates between Republican and Democratic Progressives. We must make a break with the post-Reagan past. We must return to the fundamentals that made America the greatest nation the world has ever known: individual liberty and free enterprise safe guarded by a written constitution, and a federal representative republic operating on democratic principles

The solution is simple. How we get there is the subject of this article and hopefully a sign pointing in the direction of change.

First we have to unleash the primary engine of our greatness, our people.

Currently a tax system no one, even the people who write it, can understand depresses creativity and entrepreneurship by penalizing anyone who excels with the aptly named progressive tax. Income tax had been declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court in 1894. So Congress led the way in proposing and passing the 16th Amendment which allowed for not only an income tax but a graduated income tax. The first income tax law provided for a graduated tax with a top rate of 7%. And when it was stated during the debate that someday the rate might reach an unbelievable 50% the speaker was laughed to scorn. Yet, by 1961 the top rate had climbed to 91% with the 50% rate beginning at the $16,000 level. These rates were cut dramatically under Ronald Reagan and a wave of growth was ignited that blazed for decades. However they have been creeping back up ever since. But it isn’t the rates whatever they are that we should stand against. It is instead the idea behind them. If we want a level playing field and if we want everyone to pay their fair share what we need is a flat tax. Everyone, whether they make $1,000, $10,000 or $10,000,000 pays the same percentage with no deductions and no tax credits. Everyone pays. Everyone contributes. If you earn money you join with all other earners to support the nation. Trying to tax our way out of debt elicits a paraphrase of Parkinson’s Law, “Expenditures always rise to meet income.”

Next we have to unleash our corporations.

Today America has the highest corporate tax rate in the world. This makes us uncompetitive and unattractive to foreign capital. First of all tax on corporate profits is a double tax because corporations are owned by stock holders. When the profits are distributed to the owners of the stock they are responsible for this as income. Therefore the corporate tax is a double tax which is obviously unfair and an inhibition to growth and productivity. I do not propose to lower the corporate tax rate. I propose we eliminate it entirely. This would strike a blow for true equality, freedom, and fairness. It would also take a giant step in the direction of making America once again the most attractive place in the world for those who want the freedom to excel.

I would couple this with an immediate moratorium on federal regulations and a roll back on those which have shackled our economy since the beginning of the progressive era. Take the oil industry for example.  If we would cut the ideologically driven threads which bind this giant we could unleash the power of our vast reserves, free ourselves from dependence on our enemies and create millions of jobs.  “Drill Baby Drill” could become the slogan for a general renewal of American free enterprise.  We need to cut the red tape that strangles us and let freedom ring.

What about foreign Affairs?

Internationally we need to return to the policies which guided us from being a raw undeveloped nation on the edge of civilization to the pinnacle of world power. This foreign policy is superbly summed up by one of the most under-rated presidents in American History, John Quincy Adams in his statement, “America goes not abroad, in search of monsters to destroy. She is the well-wisher to the freedom and independence of all. She is the champion and vindicator only of her own.” To return to America’s traditional foreign policy we need to end the undeclared wars. Stop maintaining garrisons in more than 100 nations around the world, bring our troops home, and guard our own borders. We need to quit trying to build nations for people who don’t even like us,  come home and rebuild our own infrastructure once the envy of the world now a crumbling reminder of what we could once accomplish.

We also need to return the control of America’s money to Congress where it belongs according to the Constitution. The perpetually re-elected have abdicated their responsibility to create money to the Federal Reserve. Originally instituted to abolish the business cycle and manage the economy this central bank has presided over the devaluation of American currency and the inflation of one bubble after another which has led to one crash after another.

It is instructive to remember, that Marx in his Manifesto of the Communist Party called for, “Centralization of credit in the hands of the state, by means of a national bank with State capital and an exclusive monopoly.” And that Thomas Jefferson said, “The central bank is an institution of the most deadly hostility existing against the Principles and form of our Constitution. I am an Enemy to all banks discounting bills or notes for anything but Coin. If the American People allow private banks to control the issuance of their currency, first by inflation and then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around them will deprive the People of all their Property until their Children will wake up homeless on the continent their Fathers conquered.” We must free ourselves from this privately and secretly owned corporation that controls our monetary system and our economy.

Lenin once said, “The surest way to destroy a nation is to debauch its currency.” The Federal Reserve Bank has inflated our currency almost beyond recognition and to re-establish our nation as the greatest experiment in human freedom that it was meant be we must reverse this trend. To do this we must stop the deficit spending which drives our debt which creates the need for politicians to inflate our currency to hide their mismanagement. We need to cut current deficit spending, cap future spending, and begin to pay down the debt. Only by actually becoming responsible once again will we create the certainty of value that sound money portrays. Inflation is a dishonest tax upon all we earn and the silent thief of all we save.

Our current leaders work to manage the decline of America. However, those of us who refuse to accept the inevitability of this decline can turn it around. We can stand in the gap and bring forth the re-birth of America. So, if we have the will and the courage we can have some real hope for a change.

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 drrobertowens@hotmail.com  Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook or Twitter @ Drrobertowens.

Immovable Object Meet the Irresistible Force April 8, 2011

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Many times in our history we’ve been confronted with what seemed like impossible odds.

In 1776 thirteen sparsely populated colonies clinging for life to the Atlantic seaboard surrounded by a forest that ran unbroken to the Mississippi dared to stand up to our imperial masters and say, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”

No foreign king, no Prime Minister and no Parliament had the right to dictate to our ancestors what taxes to pay or how much they should be.  Even though England at the time was the dominant superpower, the undersupplied and overmatched Americans refused to admit defeat.  We lost New York.  We lost battle after battle retreating more than we advanced, yet the prize of freedom overcame the penalty of failure, and against all odds victory was won.

When the pirates of Tripoli sought to extort tribute from us as they did from every other nation that passed through their waters our people rose up with a cry of, “Millions for defense but not a cent for tribute!”  Gathering our miniscule navy and our brave marines the United States fought our way into the port of the pirates while a land force fought its way through the desert eventually claiming what the great powers of the day did not: the right to pass unmolested and the right to trade in freedom.

A generation later in our second war with England, the War of 1812, we once again went toe-to-toe with the third largest army in the world and the largest navy the world had ever seen.  The British defeated our attempt to invade Canada as they invaded our territory almost at will.  Their armed forces ranged up and down our coast at will.  They chased President Madison out of Washington and burned the White House.  The only major battle we won was fought after the peace treaty was signed, yet we emerged bloody but vindicated.  We had challenged the greatest empire in the world.  We held our own winning new respect around the world.

Next, when the nations of Central and South America found the courage to rise up against their own colonial masters declaring their freedom with the hope of establishing free and independent republics modeled after the United States, President Monroe threw down the gauntlet to the rest of the world when he boldly presented his Doctrine.  Though our navy was miniscule and our army almost none existent he relied upon the inherent strength of our people when he proclaimed the western hemisphere off limits to any power seeking to establish or re-establish colonies.  We did not have the authority, we did not have the power, but we had the courage to say leave freedom alone so our neighbors could develop their own lands for themselves.

In the Civil War America tore itself apart.  For four long years war raged killing more Americans than all our other wars put together.  The powers of Europe believed the experiment in freedom was proving itself to be a failure.  France moved to establish a sphere of influence in Mexico as the other great powers waited expectantly to pick up the pieces.  As the war picked up momentum the emerging industrial might and burgeoning manpower of the new nation was pressed into service until by 1864 the Union Army was the largest and best equipped on earth and the Confederate Army was the second.  Setting a pattern for all future wars the newest technology and the latest inventions such as railroads, iron-clad steam powered ships, telegraphs, repeating rifles, and machine guns first made their appearance in the American military.  Against all odds we re-united our nation, sent France packing, and reaffirmed the Monroe Doctrine.

In World War One the two contending sides in Europe had bled each other dry on the fields of Flanders and fought to a stalemate.  Then America sent our troops over there and didn’t bring them back until it was over, over there.  In World War Two fascist dictators thought the Western democracies were decadent and ready to collapse with a good kick.  And their plan seemed to be working until one of them made the mistake of kicking on our door, and we rose up like a giant from slumber and led the way in bringing their roofs down upon their heads.

As the Communist Colossus rose from the ashes of World War II to include Eastern Europe, and China America built NATO, held them at bay in Europe, and then stood almost alone to battle them as they tried to expand in Korea, Asia, and Central America.  American blood and treasure was expended in torrents for five decades until the Soviet Union collapsed as a Christmas present to the world in 1991.  Against the uncounted hordes of the East and the fellow travelers in our midst we persevered and gained the victory.

Time and again when the odds were against us we, the American people have risen to the challenge.  Whenever we have confronted a problem we have found some way to succeed.  When President Kennedy challenged us to go to the moon we did.  When President Ragan challenged us to believe in ourselves again after the shame of Watergate, the forfeiture of our victory in Vietnam, and the Iran Hostage crisis we did.

Today we face financial collapse and overwhelming debt.  Today our adversaries aren’t foreign dictators but our own elected officials who want to continue spending no matter what the voters say.  Today the challenge is a system that doesn’t work, a Congress that is bought and paid for, and a Progressive Movement that has managed to organize itself into power at every level in every branch.

No matter what the problems, we’re the American people. We’re exceptional, and we can do it!  It’s time for every good citizen to come to the aid of our nation.  We must stand for the solution or we’ll fall before the problem.  As a President who knew the way to grow an economy was to cut taxes once said, “We shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, to assure the survival and success of liberty.”  We’ve got to pick up the burden before Atlas shrugs.  If we’ll admit we have a problem we will find a solution.  After all, we’re the American people.  Immovable Object Meet the Irresistible Force.

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.


American Exceptionalism and a Can Do Attitude March 8, 2010

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Researching the national political scene could become depressing in an era when Progressives dedicated to fundamentally transforming America hold almost total control of the media and the government especially when they’re working hard to turn a recession into a depression. However, the Obama drama is like watching a slow-motion train wreck, if not inspiring at least it’s entertaining. Daily we’re assaulted by a Washington elite dedicated to proving Saturday Night Live never went far enough into satire to capture the nonsensical folly of our elected leaders.
Hourly our intelligence is insulted by people telling us they want to spend more money to lower the deficit and balance the budget as the deficit climbs higher and faster than ever before, and the national debt careens past satire into the theater of the absurd. Minute by minute we’re assaulted by news such as the self admitted Communist who was purged from the White House in the middle of the night is now an American Treasure. Or that the President’s long time pastor and mentor Rev. Wright recently honored Minister Louis Farrakhan the leader of the Nation of Islam with the Rev. Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr. Lifetime Achievement Trumpeteer award. Is that the last trumpet I hear?
Suffice it to say the national scene in America today appears determined to prove one of Mark Twain’s less repeated quotes, “Sometimes I wonder whether the world is being run by smart people who are putting us on or by imbeciles who really mean it.”
Watching our leaders act as if Dilbert comic strips are their leadership manual it’s hard not to keep at least one eye out for Curley, Larry and Moe to dance in hitting each other with rubber hammers and spraying seltzer all over the place. Oh wait a minute that’s Pelosi, Reid and Rohm Emmanuel. If it wasn’t so tragic it’d be laughable to think these Chicago ward healers and their Progressive front men really believed they’d get away with hijacking a nation like it was a semi filled with flat screen TVs.
Concentrating on this every day could become depressing, but I realized long ago not to take it too seriously it all perishes with the using and it’s the things that won’t that are important. Besides, I look to my local government for a more realistic notion of how America is doing. The leaders I see are actually struggling to come to grips with the dire economic times we face. They aren’t charging it to the kids, taxing the citizens into poverty or begging for handouts from bloated state and federal governments. They’re making the hard, unpopular choices, cutting this and limiting that in order to maintain a balanced budget. Yes it’s hard work. Yes, it’s likely to lead to some of them not being re-elected. And yes, it’s what they volunteered for and what we chose them for.
In some areas this picture won’t match reality. In some places such as California, Illinois, Harrisburg PA, Chicago, Philadelphia, Phoenix, and Los Angeles the Progressives who’ve controlled these places for generations desperately try to find new ways to plunder their citizens as they contemplate bankruptcy. However, no matter how the remaining proponents of ever expanding entitlements and pork barrel budgets try to prop up their house of cards there are daily more citizens who get it. Not one to profusely quote President Clinton I’m happy to recommend that we all repeat together, “The era of big government is over.” Our elected officials need to get it instead of following the lemmings over the cliff.
Yes this could get depressing but I believe in American Exceptionalism and a can do attitude. I believe that our history and our future have been and will be defined by our devotion to limited government and the liberty and opportunity this provides.
Throughout our history when the days looked the darkest Americans braved the icy Delaware to surprise the overconfident mercenaries. We surrounded the largest army of the greatest empire on earth at Yorktown and birthed freedom from oppression. After the professional soldiers of the former masters came in like a flood chasing the representatives of the people and burned our new capital we met them again on the way to New Orleans and handed them the greatest defeat their arms had ever suffered. When the dispute over slavery finally ruptured the wound which had festered since independence and other nations thought we would devour ourselves in a nightmare of blood and steel we rose from the ashes, re-united and became the greatest industrial power the world has ever known. When the Nazi and Fascists of the twentieth century thought they would rule for a thousand years America led the rest of the world in defeating them. When the Soviets and other Communists sought to crush freedom under their collective heel the United States held high the beacon of freedom.
Yes, no matter how out of fashion it may be with the media or the liberal establishment I believe in America Exceptionalism and the can do attitude of the American people. No matter how hard our progressive leaders try to grow our traditionally limited government into a cradle-to-grave welfare state I do not believe they’ll succeed in suffocating the light of liberty which burns bright in the breast of America. And since I’m quoting presidents today I want to end with President Ronald Reagan who told us, “A troubled and afflicted mankind looks to us, pleading for us to keep our rendezvous with destiny; that we will uphold the principles of self-reliance, self-discipline, morality, and, above all, responsible liberty for every individual that we will become that shining city on a hill.”
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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