(a sequel, as it were, to Lincoln Lenin, as President’s Day is fast upon us…)
(from Free North Carolina)
These capitalists generally act harmoniously and in concert, to fleece the people.
—Abraham Lincoln, from his first speech as an Illinois state legislator, 1837
Everyone now is more or less a Socialist.
—Charles Dana, managing editor of the New YorkTribune, and Lincoln’s assistant secretary of war, 1848
The workingmen of Europe feel sure that, as the American War of Independence initiated a new era of ascendancy for the middle class, so the American Antislavery War will do for the working classes. They consider it an earnest of the epoch to come that it fell to the lot of Abraham Lincoln, the single-minded son of the working class, to lead his country through the matchless struggle for the rescue of an enchained race and the reconstruction of a social world.
—Karl Marx and the First International Workingmen’s Association to Lincoln, 1864
ON DECEMBER 3, 1861, a former one-term congressman, who had spent most of the past dozen years studying dissident economic theories, mounting challenges to the existing political order and proposing ever more radical responses to the American crisis, delivered his first State of the Union address as the sixteenth president of the United States.
Preserver of the Union, or one of the first Progressives? Or both?
If you think progressive presidents began with Woodrow Wilson (ptui!) (forgetting Theodore Roosevelt became the youngest President after an ‘anarchist’ shot McKinley) perhaps you should revisit history?
Fabians Socialists Communists Progressives have been around, even before Marx, constantly eating away at the Republic.
We need to continually ‘check our six’.
And no, I’m not a reincarnation of Joe McCarthy.
I’m having a bit of an identity crisis.
I was born white, which makes me a racist.
I am a fiscal and moral conservative, which makes me a fascist.
I am heterosexual, which makes me a homophobe.
I am non-union, which makes me a traitor to the working class and an ally of big business.
I am older than 55 and semi retired which makes me a useless old man.
I think and I reason; therefore I doubt much that the main stream media tells me, which makes me a reactionary.
I am proud of my heritage and our inclusive American culture, which makes me a xenophobe.
I value my safety and that of my family; therefore I appreciate the police and the legal system, which makes me a right wing extremist.
I believe in hard work, fair play, and fair compensation according to each individual’s merits, which makes me anti-social.
I, and my friends, acquired a good education without student loans and no debt at graduation, which makes me some kind of odd underachiever.
I believe in the defense and protection of the homeland by all citizens, which makes me a militarist.
Please help me come to terms with this, because I’m not sure who I am anymore!
And now I don’t know which bathroom to use anymore….
H/T Doverthere, Theo Spark
(from Brock Townsend)
Communism did kill, Courtois and his fellow historians demonstrate, with ruthless efficiency: 25 million in Russia during the Bolshevik and Stalinist eras, perhaps 65 million in China under the eyes of Mao Zedong, 2 million in Cambodia, millions more Africa, Eastern Europe, and Latin America–an astonishingly high toll of victims. This freely expressed penchant for homicide, Courtois maintains, was no accident, but an integral trait of a philosophy, and a practical politics, that promised to erase class distinctions by erasing classes and the living humans that populated them.
Courtois and his contributors document Communism’s crimes in numbing detail, moving from country to country, revolution to revolution. The figures they offer will likely provoke argument, if not among cliometricians then among the ideologically inclined. So, too, will Courtois’s suggestion that those who hold Lenin, Trotsky, and Ho Chi Minh in anything other than contempt are dupes, witting or not, of a murderous school of thought–one that, while in retreat around the world, still has many adherents. A thought-provoking work of history and social criticism, The Black Book of Communism fully merits the broadest possible readership and discussion.
They need to author a companion piece about Capitalism – oh wait! While there were certainly abuses and deaths, the numbers pale next to Communism.
As do the results of a free market versus State control.
Empty Venezuelan store shelves
I know, I’m mostly preaching to the choir here. But with the constant bombardment of the so-called ‘facts’ wonderful lands like Zimbabwe and Venezuela show us…
(FTC – no one gave me this book)
(NOT to be confused with LSMFT**)
Kevin Baker (aka The Smallest Minority) ALWAYS brings it. If he doesn’t, he brings to us others who do. Brewing in his blogmind prior to the recent announcements regarding the firm placement of the cap on the Rule of Law, his latest megapost is truly worthy of your time.
Here is a taste:
In the intervening twelve-plus years I’ve done a lot of reading, observing, thinking and writing. I’ve currently got a bookmark folder entitled “Civil War” with about fifty links in it, and those are just the ones I knew I’d eventually want to go back to. Apparently I’ve been ruminating on this particular essay for a couple of years without realizing it. The piece that finally forced me back to the keyboard is a year-old post over at Sultan Knish, No Truce With the Left. It echos a lot of the sentiments I have posted here over the years, but as Daniel Greenfield is wont to do, he says it more eloquently than I. A short excerpt:
The left does not care about gay rights. If you doubt that, consider how many of the left’s favorite Muslim countries have gay rights. The left has recently divided its campaign passions between gay marriage and defending Iran. Iran denies the existence of gays and hangs them where it finds them.
The USSR treated homosexuality as a crime even while it was recruiting gay men as spies in the West. Cuba, the darling of the American left, hated both gays and blacks. The ACLU backed the police states of Communism. If the left supports an enemy nation, the odds are excellent that it is also a violently bigoted place that makes a KKK rally look like a hippie hangout.
To understand the left, you need to remember that it does not care about 99 percent of the things it claims to care about. Name a leftist cause and then find a Communist country that actually practiced it. Labor unions? Outlawed. Environmentalism? Chernobyl. The left fights all sorts of social and political battles not because it believes in them, but to radicalize, disrupt and take power.
The left does not care about social justice. It cares about power.
That is why no truce is possible with the left. Not on social issues. Not on any issues.
You should really go and read the whole überpost!
The Smallest Minority
*LMTFA – leave me the f*** alone!
**LSMFT – Lucky Strike means fine tobacco
We’ve been watching Netflix NARCOS, a docu-drama about the rise and fall of Pablo Escobar, for a time, the most wanted drug lord in the World.
He did take some of his ill-gotten gains and improved many communities with electric lighting for soccer fields, and support for national (versus foreign) made industries.
This gave him a Robin Hood image, and allowed him access as a national legislator (for a short time).
By promising to give the people what they want.
Now, WE have this guy…
Not a criminal, murdering, drug smuggler, but still wanting to take money from corporations and individuals, and redistribute it.
By governmental force.
Because he believes government can and should.
To give (some of) the people what they want.
The current occupant of the White House is a middle-aged Black socialist, who wants to level the playing field (his words).
Now this pretender to the throne wants to do the same thing – and he’s an old, White guy!
And both keep referring to this nation as a democracy!
NOT voting for socialists is not a race issue. It’s a Republic issue.
One doesn’t need to be a drug smuggler to see that.
In 2003, Baltimore Sun Senior Editor of Design of Adam Marton had his car stolen by a black criminal named Thelonious; in 2015, Thelonious was murdered in Baltimore, and Marton penned a lament to his life lived without the benefit of white privilege…
In 2003, Baltimore Sun Senior Editor of Design of Adam Marton had his car stolen by a black criminal named Thelonious; in 2015, Thelonious was murdered in Baltimore, and Marton penned a lament to his life lived without the benefit of white privilege… The United States of America is irredeemable. As John Derbyshire noted, Europe seems to be much worse, as “the national institutions of the West are now fiercely protective of Muslims and hostile to the native ancestral populations.” But it’s okay. Seriously. Relax. Breath. Please.
I don’t know which is worse – the claim such a thing exists in 2016 America, or the fact this guy is so taken in by the idea that he is victimized, and then apologizes to the now-murdered criminal for his not having been born White?
Yes – we are all created equal. What we do with our lives afterward is what makes the difference.
I happen to have been born White. I’m not apologizing for that.
And being discriminated against, regardless of the reason, does hurt!
There are Black and White serial killers. Race-baiters. Doctors, scientists, actors, credit card fraud investigators. Men, women. People of all races on some kind of disability. Brown and Yellow ones, too. (and yes, I know that’s politically incorrect!)
I have been judged by others because I was White, disabled, and overweight. Had facial hair. Because I never lived in the South, or on a farm.
I’ve never (to my knowledge) received preferential treatment because of my skin color. I have been discriminated against because of it. And by being disabled.
As my friend (a former boss in two businesses) would say, “Time to put on your big boy pants!”
For every politically-correct whiner who didn’t get a job, or a promotion, or $100K employment after dropping out of high school, pay attention!
YOU MUST WORK FOR THINGS, AND SOMETIMES YOU WILL FAIL!
The Welfare State and the ‘gimmee everything I deserve it’ attitude is not serving you well.
h/t Brock Townsend
(from the lovely, talented, and geekily knowledgeable Roberta X, in part…)
Everyone running for the Democrat nomination wants to turn a large number of gun-owning citizens into some kind of Federal criminal, with the only question being, “felon or malefeasant?” But only one of them has hands-on experience in the kind of police-state tactics it would take to make that work, and in making them palatable to a population of people who could reasonably be expected to be skeptical.
Meanwhile, most of GOP’s hot prospects are sellin’ various flavors of Return-to-Jesusland* and shippin’ out the Dangerously Brown (a difficult trick — y’know how there are so many guns in the U.S. that no power could ever grab ’em all? Imagine if those guns had volition didn’t want to be found…). I’ll grant that there are serious, good reasons — including humanitarian ones — for a more secure and better-patrolled border; it’s this business of plannin’ to comb through the population and root out a “dangerous element” often referred to as “parasitic” that stinks on ice to me — and it should to you, too. Do you recall what kinds of societies had any success at that kind of thing? Do you realize what it takes to make it work? (Ahem, “Papers, please?”) Did you sleep through World History class?
This is one of the lousiest candidate pools I have ever seen. Mr. Bloomberg is the worst of them — worse than Mr. Sanders, worse than Mr. Trump. If he enters the race, I may have to vote in the Democrat primary just so I can vote against him.
* Except this country never was. The American Revolution can be cast as a kind of dialogue between the Enlightenment/Age of Reason ideas that pushed it and the Great Awakenings that bookended it. From that angle, the Establishment Clause of First Amendment represents a brilliantly common goal: neither party was desirous of a State church. Thus the United States was explicitly made a safe place for believers and nonbelievers of every stripe. This is a delicate balance and has been maintained with varying degrees of elegance and civility though the years. We should fear any politician who feels a mandate to Do Good — especially if he or she believes it was granted by Divine authority.
There’s really nothing further to say on this subject.
(for those who missed this!)
The lovely and brilliant TAMARA takes the Internets, AGAIN! It seems some media fools were demonstrating how to use a portable fire extinguisher, when this exchange came about:
I am including in the dialogue the parts where I was yelling at the television. (Tamara)
Savannah Guthrie: “A lot of us are intimidated though, like, by the idea of turning it on…” *makes gestures and facial expressions as though she’s holding a well-greased and annoyed cobra at arms length*
Me: “Wut?” *tilts head on side like RCA Victor mascot*
Jeff Rossen: “I… I will tell you, I actually never used a fire extinguisher before and I thought there would be a kickback and I was afraid to use it…”
Me: (yelling) “OH. MY. GOD! It’s a fire extinguisher, you sackless herbivore! What are you afraid of, you big girl’s blouse?“
It had honestly never crossed my mind that a grown human being could feel an ounce of trepidation about a fire extinguisher. That’s like… I don’t know, being scared of pillows, or footstools, or filing cabinets. And whatever you call this bizarre phobia, two out of five Manhattanites on my TV screen just admitted to suffering from it!
I suspect said Manhattanites are ferried to work by limousine, and returned to their condos nightly under the watchful eyes of armed security. No wonder they scoff at those of us in fly-over-states who seek self-sufficiency and self-protection.
EVERYTHING IS DONE FOR THEM!
It’s as though they are AGE 5 !
BRAVA, once again! – all hail the Queen of Snark!
from Bayou Renaissance Man (in part):
The Telegraph’s observation bears repeating. Inequality is not poverty. Furthermore, equality does not consist of, and cannot be measured against, economic factors alone. What the framers of our Constitution sought was equality of opportunity. What the progressive left seeks is equality of outcomes – and they’ll impose that on us by legislative fiat if they can, regardless of its (lack of) truth and the failure of every society in history to accomplish anything of the sort by direction.
It’s a frightening prospect to consider how much damage social justice warriors can do at the helm of every administrative department in the government. That’s yet another reason to reduce the size of that government to the necessary minimum, and ensure that its bureaucrats are aware that they serve in accordance with the Constitution and are subordinate to its requirements. They don’t have the authority, or the right, to ignore it and/or reinterpret it according to their whims.
You should seriously go and read all of Peter’s essay at this link.
And, to all you Social Justice Warriors out there –
KEEP YOUR HANDS OFF OTHER PEOPLE’S STUFF!
(Remembering originally The Declaration of Independence read Life, Liberty and PROPERTY!)
ATHENS — Retirees throughout Greece mobbed banks as they tried to withdraw a maximum of 120 euros ($134) in pension payments on Wednesday, as the country teetered on the brink of economic collapse hours after an international bailout expired.
Emotions ran high outside a Piraeus Bank branch in downtown Athens as some 60 customers jostled impatiently after waiting for hours in the sweltering sun.
“This is humiliating,” said Athanasios, an 80-year-old former army officer. “I used to receive a monthly pension of 1,500 euros and now I have to line up for hours to receive 120? This is unfair.” (in part from The Ultimate Answer To Kings)
I’m reminded of the junior high boy’s joke about the guy being forced to slide backwards down a giant razor blade (using his b***) for brakes, and landing in a bucket of iodine.
And like dominoes, I fear Greece is only the beginning.
Our own government has already made noises about ‘acquiring’ 401k funds, and pensions, and increasing both the amount and items/services being taxed. And other banks in the World have ‘acquired’ ATM funds and savings of individuals!
The long slide is beginning, my friends, and unless you live largely off the grid in the middle-of-nowhere, bartering gold coin, ammo and water (Joel?), you (we) are in for a wild ride.
If anyone out there thinks bread lines, runs on banks and gas rationing are not in our future, I’d like to heard your predictions.
And ‘domestic violence’ as a result? A forgone conclusion, I’m afraid.
I truly hope I am completely wrong.
Yep. This is unfair. But no one said Life would be.