M-T-M: Three Presidents On The March

Macron – Trump – Macri: the trio of presidents that promises to save a weary world that is about to lose its Western ways. Emmanuel MACRON, barely 40 years old and youngest President of France since Napoleon. Donald TRUMP (70), President of America-First-Again, and Mauricio MACRI (58), President of Open-For-Business-Again Argentina. Though not obviously orchestrated, they seem to act with some harmony of purpose. While their political party affiliations have been of the flexible kind, their actions and intentions are not ideological but very clear: they spell a Machiavellian pragmatism. All three are clearing the swamp left by prior socialist administrations, doing away with restrictive regulations, loosening labor laws, inviting investors with lower tax rates and fairer regulations, encouraging job and company formation, talking tough on welfare and immigration (Macri mentioned a possible fence with Bolivia), revamping education for the 21st century. All have made money in the “free market”, perhaps the consequence of being born into moderately rich immigrant families. Macron’s parents were both doctors. Trump’s and Macri’s parents became rich in the real estate world and, in fact, did business together in NY and Buenos Aires. Macron became wealthy while working as an Investment Banker for the Rothschild Bank after a brief stint in the Inspectorate General of Finances of the Hollande administration. He was then appointed Minister of Economy, Industry and Digital Affairs where he was successful in getting business-friendly reforms passed.
Elite schooling shaped their thinking. All frequented prestigious schools: “Sciences Po” and “ENA” for Macron, “Wharton School of Finance”/U. of Pennsylvania for Trump, and Macri graduated from the “Pontifical Catholic University” of Argentina, and attended a few classes at Wharton. Politically, all are “mavericks”, outsiders, although Macri was twice elected Mayor of Buenos Aires after becoming well known as the chairman of the very popular Argentine soccer team Boca Juniors. Republicanism is on the march. Macron formed his own centrist party: LA REPUBLIQUE EN MARCHE (The Republic on the March).  Macri formed PRO i.e. PROPUESTA REPUBLICANA (Republican Plan party). They had to do this in order to be free to attack the stale traditional organizations and their wishful but failing policies. Trump did virtually the same thing by simply appropriating the Republican name and turning it into his own vehicle. Macron was not the favorite in the primaries, but handily beat the “extreme right” candidate, Marine Le Pen in a run-off. Le Pen argued for a FREXIT (French exit from the European Union), but  Macron argued the opposite, though his was not the popular view in France during the election cycle.
All married well. Trump and Macri are said to have married beauties, in fact, three each. Some in the press are wondering if Melania has “met her match” in elegant Juliana Awada, Mrs. Macri. While Trump married a much younger woman, Macron married a much older one, Brigitte, who was his drama teacher in High School.
Macron can be described as the most intellectual and erudite of the three. He studied and excelled in philosophy and piano, though his passion remains Public Finance.  Trump definitely is the “street-smart” operator whose unpolished language is understood by the popular masses. Macri’s popularity can be traced to his very successful management of a highly successful soccer team. He is rich but not arrogantly so, and is motivated to correct the grievous errors of  Argentina’s decades of Peronist mismanagement.
It is however not perfect harmony. Macron objects to Trump’s decision to pull out of the Paris environmental agreement. Macri openly supported Hillary Clinton for President. There may well be more disagreement, but it all trends in favor of pragmatism, peace, and prosperity.

Macron wanted to make

Trump Meets With Argentine President Mauricio Macri in the Oval Office


Trump’s Alter Ego Speaks French

French President Emmanuel MACRON and US President Donald TRUMP could not be more different as political big shots, yet so similar. One highly educated in France’s elite schools (Science PO and ENA), the other obtained a Master’s in Economics from Wharton School of Finance (U of Pennsylvania). Macron is barely 40 years old, and married a much older woman (his HS teacher), while Trump, barely 70 years old, married several times and each time to a much younger woman. In person-to-person contact, their chemistry seems to be positive. They converse with ease using similar business language. Each got rich in the open market, one in investments, the other in real estate. Neither had ever been elected to any public office, though Macron did try a couple of times. In the end, he did get appointed to important government posts in two previous administrations. Though “outsider” Trump has been a member of two political parties in the US, plus a stint as an Independent, he chose the Conservative side of politics to run for president. Macron actually formed his own centrist party (En Marche), adding to the array of French parties, none of whom ever get more than 30% of the electorate in primaries. He is said to come from the Left, but “dazzles the Right”. Trump comes from everywhere and is home everywhere. Without a majority in the primaries, Macron landed in a run-off with Right-wing candidate Marine Le Pen who he beat in a landslide. Both Presidents have chosen pragmatism over ideology.

Macron loves public policy and making France “competitive again”, but dislikes Trump’s slogan “Make America Great Again.” Such an irony: France is known for its concern with “greatness”, as France was “great” under Napoleon and DeGaulle. For them, “greatness” is steeped in honor, duty, heritage, and love of homeland (French schools emphasize history). Greatness in Trump’s eyes is tall buildings, fat checking accounts, and large big-boy toys. True, Trump became a billionaire focusing on the “deals”. But, then, Macron is also rich, though only a millionaire. He earned his fortune while on the job at the Rothschild Investment Bank. This kind of luck makes even a socialist find a way to justify becoming rich. Macron, the ex-socialist, sounds American when he says that rich is not bad, we need not punish success, but we do want to help more people become rich (paraphrased). Therefore, reduced taxes make a lot of sense. All of this points to a convergence with Trump’s “capitalistic” thoughts, especially those involving private investment. Other areas where both presidents seem to move in parallel are found in energy policy (Macron wants nuclear), education, welfare, labor laws (Sunday store hours, hours worked), but not environmental practices. Note to reader: the French see no contradiction in working nuclear power plants while demanding a purified environment).

Armed with the legendary French astuteness, he disarmed his post-election competition by hiring the top guns from several rival parties for important government functions. The lure of an ambassadorship or cabinet post is stronger than money and ideology, on all continents. In fact, Macron also co-opted the economic message of his main rival party (Les Republicains) headed by Sarkozy, aka “Sarkozy the American”. Macron is in favor of a strong EU and wants to further tie the knot with Germany but on better terms. At times Macron refers to himself as the modern “Joan of Arc”, although that label fell on his arch-rival from the Right, Marine Le Pen. This pragmatic and young President holds positions found in Le Pen’s arsenal as well as in Trump’s, such as better immigration control, reduced burden on companies and jobs, jobs, jobs….homeland first…

Both presidents have many similar views, hold strong opinions, are hell-bound on executing on their respective plans. Macron approaches those issues with astuteness, subtlety, and elegance. Trump’s approach is that of a street fighter, using harsh if not insensitive language without much subtlety but with absolute self-confidence. Pragmatism is their common quality. Maybe this transatlantic magic spreads to other places. For instance, current President of Argentina, Mauricio MACRI who is shaking things up with market solutions down in Buenos Aires. More on him later…


Sanctuary America

What if all 50 states declared themselves sanctuary states?

The immigration lawyer hired by Montgomery County, Maryland, reportedly charges $575 per hour to steer the county government into a “sanctuary” status. Montgomery follows the trend started by cities like San Francisco and Chicago providing a “safe space” for illegal aliens who might be deported under the new administration managed by America’s deal-making president, Donald J. Trump. While the total city count is approaching 500, many counties and some states are planning to join this movement.

It is amazing that these governmental entities, which constantly petition the federal government for more and more funds, suddenly seem content with losing those federal dollars. The federal government could not have devised a better budget-reduction scheme than this. California alone receives about $350 Billion from the federal government annually. Could California survive without those dollars? Could virtually bankrupt Chicago and Illinois survive without federal money? Of course those cities and states that send more in taxes to Washington than they receive in federal payments might be delighted to stop receiving funds if they also then stop paying taxes to the federal government. It is obviously not as simple as making a political decision, but it does reflect a generalized “entitlement” mindset among political leaders.

Would this prospect not bring us back in part, to the origins of the United States when the foundational documents talked about a union between the “several states”? Have we not come too far from federalism? In fact, why do states send money to Washington only to receive part of that money, in some cases more than the original amount, back in our state?

I scratch my head and ask:  why do we have sanctuary cities in the first place? to protect illegal aliens from deportation or even prosecution by the entity whose constitutional job it is to enforce the country’s immigration laws? …to prevent family “break-ups”…. when the alien families broke themselves up when they left their homeland to come to the US? Finally, why do we have illegal aliens roaming the country freely against the wishes of a majority of citizens, some of whose wages have been depressed because of government-encouraged cheap foreign labor? Why has this problem not been fixed since it began after the demise of the Bracero (temporary labor permits) program over 50 years ago? Could it be that industry wants cheap labor and Democrats want cheap votes? One last question: if the 1920’s country-quota system was discriminatory because it favored Europeans (so said Ted Kennedy) then why is the current system not de facto discriminatory since it favors those who live close to America’s unprotected national border?

Why has America turned itself into a massive sanctuary for the failed state of Mexico and failing Central American states. Oh wait, America might as well be a “safe space” for everyone. Our college professors who seem to have “emotional incontinence” or “intellectual deprivation”, are leading the way in providing SAFE SPACE FOR …those in need of protection from diverse opinions.



Liberals Have Their Own Wall.

What is it about Liberals, especially Progressive Liberals, who believe that they are the immaculate repository of truth, understanding and, therefore, of the right policies that will improve the human condition? Naive at best. Only the individual can improve the self. Unfortunately, they confuse intent with effectiveness and results. All welfare programs start with good intentions. Temporary programs turn into permanent and ever-growing ones, just like the bureaucracies that feed on them to sustain their lucrative bureaucratic jobs. The best-known program is the War On Poverty which started during LBJ’s New Deal. As the nation has doubled in population, so has the dependent welfare class. The $20 Trillion (Heritage Foundation figure) spent over more than 50 years has not moved the 15% poverty rate downward.. Some 47 million US residents now take part in one or more of the 87 welfare programs “proudly” administered by the Agriculture Department, creating a permanent dependent class of residents. It is ironic that the Interior Department has a policy of discouraging the feeding of animals in America’s vast (40%) land owned by federal and state governments, for fear of creating an animal population dependent on handouts.

Liberal voters are so convinced that they are the majority, when polls by PEW and GALLUP consistently show that twice as many Americans self-declare Conservative as Liberal. Little do they realize that they are enjoying the (5) freedoms and the lifestyle made possible by the conservative principles of the nation’s founders. The late Ted Kennedy (D-Mass) used to whine about the discriminatory nature of the first immigration rules established in the 1920s, favoring Europeans. His 1965 reformed law only ended up creating a new de facto favored class: Mexicans and others From Latin America and the Caribbean. Why is this not discriminatory?

Why are minorities always voting for Democrats who are after all the party of the KKK? The short answer has to do with Democrat propaganda shifting the KKK onus on one particular Republican member (H. Bird, D-WVA). It was Democrats who obstructed every move in Congress to treat especially African-Americans the same as Whites. And it was Everett Dirksen (R-Chicago) who provided the majority votes in the Senate to pass the 1965 Civil Rights Act. And yet they keep voting for Democrats who have merely taken that class of Americans ‘for granted’ during the election season. Trump is the first Republican since Lincoln to bluntly challenge African-Americans to reflect on this, and start voting the party of Lincoln and of the Emancipation once again.

The Left loves to observe that the Right is so far to the right. Yet over the last 100 years, the Progressive wing of the Democrats has pulled their goal post so far to the left that the other goal post now seems far away. Conservative principles have not changed. After all, what good is a principle if it changes?

Young minds come to college with a poisoned mindset about America’s past. They are motivated to redress all the evils of the world, especially the many perpetrated by America. Many confuse civil-war with revolutionary war, and both wars happened just before they were born. Their 1960’s-raised teachers did not read American history books, but anti-American books written by our socialist adversaries. Obama and many of his generation were poisoned by assorted socialist and communist friends and family. (see D’Souza’s book The Root Of Obama’s Rage) According to them we stole the southwest from Mexico, without asking how the Mexicans came to possess those lands: through conquests led by their Spanish “masters”, i.e. the famous “conquistadores”.

They believe that love-your-enemy will cure all ills. Adversaries are not so naive to not read this as weakness. They strike out even more boldly, like hyenas ganging up on a severely injured lone lion. Obama’s love for Muslims has not saved us from attacks in the MidEast and anywhere else in the world…. it has made America vulnerable. Trump has made mid-America aware. We understood and voted for a major change from the Obama dubious “hope and change” model. Remember when Liberals told us in 2009: elections have consequences, get over it!”?…need a bump?


Equality Vs Equity

Blaming the Right for the Failures of the Left


The author of the above article in the British publication The Guardian seems confused about the identity of the philosophy that created all the ills plaguing the Western world. Referring to “neoliberalism” which he never defines except by naming “conservative” protagonists and think tanks associated with free-market capitalism. Not one claim is proven by citing facts and figures applied with logic. But let’s take this “red meat” Liberal rant and approach it by simply substituting “progressive” for “neoliberal”. As usual, the author lands on the predictable culprits responsible for the demise of democracy and freedom: the Koch Brothers, while never finding a reason to mention their left counterpart, George Soros of the many community organizing Cerberus-like creatures, and fugitive from French justice. Please note that the author is after all trying to promote his new book eagerly awaited by the political left. Also note that the author is British, but does apply his opinion to the UK as well as the United States.

In 2012 I published an article in the Telegraph Herald (April 15, Dubuque, IA) (also in this blog as: Capitalism:There Is Only The Vilification) which made the precise point that the Left loves to blame the Right for the failures of most of their policies. That conclusion applies to Mr. Monbiot’s article. Among his numerous claims, he states that the “anonymity of neoliberalism” …played a “major role” in virtually all major crises that have to do with the economy, poverty, children, tax evasion, health and education, even the “epidemic of loneliness”, collapse of the ecosystem and, of course, Donald Trump; but not Bernie. He does not make an attempt to show cause and effect. Amazingly, he postulates that the neoliberal philosophy “arose out of a conscious attempt to reshape human life and shift the locus on power”. Unconscious transference of characteristics? Historians would probably agree that America was founded on the power of the individual to create for himself and his “moral circle” a life suited to their imagination, and not interfere in the lives of others who are attempting to reach a similar  objective. The individual was “king” until the start of the Progressive era around 1900, led in fact by a Republican Progressive by the name of Teddy Roosevelt. If there was a shift, it was toward the Progressive-Liberal philosophy which seems to believe that humanity is flawed and only the wise policies of Progressivism can redress these flaws through legislation, i.e. coercion. This Progressivism exists in both major political parties with emphasis on “benefits” to certain classes of voters. Such was the case of  the George W. Bush gift to seniors in the form of a prescription-drug plan that was never properly financed or funded. Other examples of failed Progressive policies are the well-known War on Poverty, Obamacare and over eighty “welfare” programs gifted primarily by Democrat Administrations.

He attacks the free-market Right’s favorite theoreticians, Ludwig von Mises and Friedrich Hayek (Bureaucracy and Road to Serfdom respectively) for arguing against central government planning which would crush individualism. This is a correct interpretation of the Austrian School of Economics, but Monbiot does not even attempt to show that his reality is different. So we must accept his opinion as fact?! Lamenting that there are so many think tanks created on the Right and that the universities of Chicago and Virginia created academic positions for this philosophy, he fails to mention that there are hundreds of other universities, colleges and institutions (education, press, government, entertainment…)  that harbor Left Progressive scholars and purveyors acting more like a juggernaut threatening fair and balanced educational pursuits. Conservative teachers and professors can attest to the difficulty of getting students to open their minds to something other than “capitalism is bad”. Most of the time, students will maintain the corrupted definition of capitalism heard in elementary and secondary classrooms and define it as “the system in which you can make as much money as you want”. I wish it were thus.

Admitting that Keynesian policies crashed in the 1970’s, he saw improbable collusion between neoliberalism and journalism that gave the new philosophy its stature especially under Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher who, according to the author, “fully realized..” their utopia. Wow, where did this utopia go? Casualties of course were labor unions and Democrats, because “freedom from trade unions and collective bargaining means the freedom to suppress wages. Freedom from regulation means freedom to poison rivers, endanger workers, charge iniquitous rates of interest and design exotic financial instruments…” How quaint, if not quixotic. One gets a little traumatized from all the anti-capitalist blows from this gentleman, who pretends that the use of a crisis for introducing unpopular policies was invented by Republicans. The author does not remember the very recent proclamation by Obama’s WH Chief of Staff saying just that, and with gusto and pride. The same Rahm Emmanuel was responsible for Clinton’s passing NAFTA and the regrettable “three strikes” legislation that hurt Blacks the most. With a insincere conciliatory tone, Monbiot admits that “Neoliberalism was not conceived as a self-serving racket, but it rapidly became one”. Wait, I cannot stop, so many gems: “As the poor become poorer and the rich become richer…” is a patently ignorant statement. The poor have increased their wealth albeit marginally, certainly not as much as the rich (CBO: 28% Vs 281% from 1979 to 2007). So what do we do about that? Mr. Monbiot has no answer. Americans are richer than ever – $86.8 trillion dollars in assets, a record at the end of 2015. How was that accomplished? not with welfare checks. Does Monbiot suggest it should be half that? and why? and how does that solve poverty? Making the rich poorer does NOT make the poor richer, but a booming economy may do so, provided Progressives stop importing cheap labor (skilled and unskilled) to compete unfairly.

Oh yes, there is always the Koch brothers, guilty as sin because of their wealth. But no mention of their counterpart George Soros who is even wealthier and has financed hundreds of left-wing organizations that have wrought the flawed policies that this article mentions but does not dare analyze. Did he also say that rich people make money by just controlling existing assets and harvesting rent, interest or capital gains? Yes he did, and claims that “earned income has been supplanted by unearned income”, which apparently is like “found money”. How do I get in on this racket?

But the most dangerous impact of neoliberalism is the political crisis, according to Monbiot, as if the domain of the state were reduced by neoliberalism. On the contrary, the domain of the state has expanded dangerously in number of policies and number of employees in this already-bloated bureaucracy. “Fascist movements build their base … from the politically inactive…the losers…”. But who is today’s fascist? Bernie or Donald? Bernie talks about regulating businesses to death (which Mussolini did), while Donald promotes company formation and innovation by individuals. Governments cannot invent stuff, nor make a country great, but its people can, provided they are relatively free to act on their instincts without the burden of bureaucratic controls and costs. What’s in a word: Liberals under Clinton started to talk about “investment” instead of spending on various programs. That would be a conservative approach as well, except that the Left never analyzes what the taxpayers got for all the investment. No ROI in this case, just the satisfaction of having “invested”. Such is the War on Poverty: the US invested $22T (Heritage Foundation) and zero reduction in poverty since 1965. Bush must be to blame!

No Liberal rant is worth its parchment if the environmental crisis were not mentioned; a “crisis caused by consumer demand and economic growth”, precisely what the Progressive economist John Maynard Keynes ordered for the America. How did we get into this mess? progressive policies, not free-market dreams. Remember, Mr Monbiot: whatever you subsidize will see increased demand, including welfare recipients.

Hidden between the lines of Liberal authors is the question of equality, equity and diversity. Liberal institutions promote diversity in community and employment, but never in thought. We must learn to think only Progressive thoughts.Equality and Equity are the gold-standard for Liberals. Everybody must be the same….. so what happened to diversity? oops! Equality for Liberals and Progressives is bad, because without equality some people do better than others in all kinds of pursuits. In their world it is not fair that some people are born with talent, others are not. So we need to curtail the talented one by having him share with the less talented one. The smart Iowa farmer who raises a healthy tall crop of corn must share some of his success with the lesser farmer for the sake of equality  which “…denotes that everyone is at the same level. Everything is shared with exact division”. Sounds like Communism. But equity refers “to the qualities of justness, fairness, impartiality and even-handedness.” So equality equals quantity, whereas equity equals quality. Do I understand that correctly? Who can quarrel with those definitions? Logic can. So I ask my students to share their good grades with the lesser students so that everyone will have a good passing grade, and no one needs to feel inferior to any other. Where is the incentive for anyone to better himself?  Why should the welfare recipient go to work if his welfare check provides a comfortable lifestyle without the drudgery of working? Progressivism dehumanizes us into robotic status. Individualism and free-market exchange of valuables brings the best out of everyone because achievement is pride in oneself, great self worth above all. Robots are not known to be proud or exhibit a sense of self worth. They work as long as man-made batteries and mechanics function as ordained by central planning…Oops, governments do not invent robots, individuals do.





Collegiate America in Distress, still.

April 3, 2016                                                                                                                                v.1.2.

The Daily Collegian issue of January 17, 1964 has a familiar-sounding headline emanating from a college staff writer: Speaker Warns of Radical Right. This student newspaper of Wayne State University (Detroit) engaged in political alarmism when it stirred up fears that “these radicals would change America so completely as to be a revolution”. Did we have such a revolution? We have had Obama’s “fundamental transformation” revolution and now Bernie Sanders is openly promoting another socialist revolution. The student writer quotes an Anti-Defamation League spokesman as saying: “their methods to beat the Communists are to establish little, big and middle-sized fronts, the way Communists do, because they say it will be a fight to the death”. Why does this sound familiar? The 1964 article takes recourse to “science” claiming that “the people who get involved in the radical right … included …those of fundamentalist religions who feel a drastically changing world is causing their old power to slip, victims of status discrepancy…”.  The same spokesperson is also quoted as saying that “the radical right sees a complete communist infiltration of the federal government, business, labor organizations and religious groups“. Today’s news media are writing similar stories, except that today’s political right would claim that it is progressive-liberals that have taken the place of Communists and infiltrated our federal government, our universities, our labor organizations, mass media and Hollywood. The most disturbing infiltration perhaps occurred in education at all levels. A majority of educators no longer claim neutrality as they permit, if not encourage radical-left students to disrupt academic life, and even call for “muscle” to remove students that might demonstrate in opposition. Earlier generations appreciated their professors who were multi-dimensional. My philosophy professor matched his persona to the particular author, without revealing his personal philosophical or political convictions. Alas. There is often a lack of tolerance of free-speech and of academic freedom unless it is left-wing. Conservatives are simply intimidated into silence or, worse, get physically abused and denied their right to speak. The radical chickens have come home to roost. One-dimensional teachers beget one-dimensional students under the deceitful name of “progressive liberal”. It is false advertising. There is not much progressive or liberal about this movement, unless progress means the lowest common denominator. Liberal is supposed to mean “liberty” of thought and action. Tolerance and civility are not virtues anymore.  Student newspapers seem only to reflect liberal views that tend to ridicule Conservatives. “Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon” reads rule #5 which is part of the 13 Rules for Radicals authored by Saul Alinsky, Dean of the virtual Chicago school of left-wing ideology. It was taught by none other than Barack Obama to community organizing groups such as the pro-Democrat ACORN voter-registration network. No wonder then, that our institutions are populated by radicals that have been oozing onto the stage since President Theodore Roosevelt, a Republican. Progressivism in both major US political parties is turning America into a nation in distress, one-dimensional, intolerant and deeply polarized.  Diversity everywhere, except in thought.



Bernie’s Progressive Plan

Published in the Galena Gazette (Galena, Il) March 29,  2016

Bernie’s Plan stands out from all the other candidate plans. His world is one of “free stuff”, not just for the millennial generation, but for all Americans. Free college tuition and free healthcare are what has ignited the Bernie ecstasy. Of course, the beneficiaries are concerned about how Bernie will pay for all this “free stuff” that will cost the economy at least $75B. Their answer is easy: the top 1%. This means about 1.3 million out of the 136 million taxpayers (2012, Tax Foundation). Those nasty Wall Street speculators, as Bernie calls the 1%, who probably made their money at the expense of the poor can well afford to pay “a little more”. It is only right that most earners of the bottom 50% (68 million) continue to pay zero, and the top 68 million continue to pay 97.2% of all federal taxes. Adding 75B to the $451B (45% of federal income taxes) that they paid in 2012, would increase their tax burden from 22.8% to 26.7% average tax rate, 8 points above the next highest effective rate.

But the Liberal mind is fixated on the flawed concept of a “zero-sum’ world in which some people must give up something so that others may get something. Instead of making the five million millionaires poorer, they should be planning to make another ten or twenty million millionaires. Making the rich poorer, does not in the end make the poor richer, but does reduce the size of the total pie for all of us. Should  the intelligent farmer be forced to share his excellent crop with the lesser farmer? Should parents give up some of the air they breathe so that the newborn may have the oxygen it needs? Should the inheritor of a fortune be forced to share it with somebody less fortunate? Should the A-student be forced to average his/her good grades with those of the lesser student? Growth, like profits, has become a dirty word for this generation, yet they preach “personal growth”. They love the 1.5 million “non-profit” companies. But those companies also have to maximize profits to do their good work; they just don’t pay taxes (but use plenty of services). Bernie’s army  preaches diversity in everything except thought. Progressive Liberalism is their standard and it is “settled science”, everything else is to be ridiculed. They love policies that “sound good”, that “invest in the future”. They want to be judged by their good intentions, but never be responsible for their failures (War On Poverty…).Conservatism practices tolerance of diverse views, seeks dialogue and debate. Progressivism avoids all three. Bernie’s “soldiers” go to college to receive an education, but arrogantly educate the educators. They condemn America  as unfair and racist, yet America  remains the destination of choice for millions of immigrants escaping the socialist environment that Bernie seeks to impose on America. Just ask Venezuela, Argentina, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, etc…

Capitalism: There Is Only The Vilification

First published April 15, 2012

Fans of  Saul Alinsky, the theoretician of the Chicago School of left-wing ideology, are familiar with this radical slogan: There Is Only The Fight.  Hillary Clinton used it to write a loving tribute to Alinsky’s RULES FOR RADICALS in her 1969 Wellesley College degree thesis, and Obama enthusiastically taught these disturbing concepts to his band of community organizers. And there you have the inspiration for the continuing demonization by the Left of its ideological opposition. For various reasons, many politicians, college instructors and even corporate CEOs have been misrepresenting if not villifying the basic  tenets of the ideal of free-market capitalism, the only one of the theories  on political economies that has ever produced wealth for its true adherents. What better way to discredit a theory than to enact anti-free-market policies (bailouts, green loans, circumventing bankruptcy laws for favored companies…) then blame their failures on capitalism? Free-market capitalism requires three fundamentals:  freedom to own property, free and fair competition, and the rule of law. Unfortunately, the Federal Government since at least FDR has been diminishing  those very principles: eminent domain threatens property rights, competition is thwarted by government mandates, by redistributive interference and favoritism,  and laws selectively applied and misapplied.

The general villification of the powerful notion of  competition is reflected in the recent “dueling” articles in this newspaper  about competition in our two hospitals . FINLEY HOSPITAL management wants to compete better with MERCY HOSPITAL through its own  catheterization lab, but MERCY’s anti-competitive posture may keep this local monopoly going with the expert help of presumed socially-responsible bureaucrats sitting in Des Moines, nobly wishing not to “waste money on duplicative services”. Economics is obviously the most neglected and misunderstood subject in this ‘capitalist’ nation.  Occasionally the light shines through and even students could figure out, for example,  that to justify the purchase of President Obama’s ideologically-favored car, i.e. GM’s all-electric VOLT, the price of gasoline would have to be $12… and President Obama will make sure the price of gasoline “will necessarily skyrocket” to eventually mandate the purchase of that kind of vehicle. No wonder the favorability gap between capitalism and socialism among college undergrads is closing (PEW RESEARCH). Even Republican candidates for president are having difficulty articulating the absolute benefits of free markets. Wishing to sound “popular”, they participate in the corruption of the free market notion, and  are basically endorsing “crony capitalism”,  the lifeblood of socialist and communist states. The growth of the IRS code from 1.4 million words  in 1965 to today’s 9.1 million words (Tax Foundation) should be ample proof of rampant cronyism (a.k.a. corporate welfare) and wealth re-distribution (a.k.a main street welfare), greatly accelerating under Obama. He keeps mentioning fairness, but the slobberingly admiring popular press never asks for a definition. Perhaps fairness depends on your ideology: the top 10% of wage earners already paying 70% of all federal income taxes is implied to be unfair. But the bottom 47% paying zero tax or receiving welfare checks is perfectly fair.  Did we vote for  representation without taxation? If you like John Maynard Keynes, the friend of “progressive” US presidents from both parties,  you owe it to your sanity to read the Austrian School (Ludwig von Mises, F. Hayek’s Road to Serfdom…) as well.  Lacking persuasive argumentation, the forces of the Command Economy  can only resort to the vilification of the very foundation of these United States, as if the enemy were free-market capitalism which after all built the most prosperous nation in the history of mankind for the greatest number of its citizens.

Published in the Telegraph Herald (April 15) and the Galena Gazette in April 2012




Despite media liberals, America still conservative

America Still Conservative v.1.1.

Is America now more liberal than conservative? That is the question. Recently Gallup provided the answer in its annual poll showing more Americans (still) self-identify conservative (38 percent) than liberal (24 percent). But, judging by recent elections and TV punditry one gets the impression that liberals are dominant in the U.S. Could it be that whoever controls the message also shapes public opinion?

An overwhelming majority of journalists self-identify as liberal, only 7 percent self-identify as conservative. Liberal bias in the media has been called out by a handful of journalists recently such as Sharyl Attkisson (formerly CBS), Mark Halperin and Joe Scarborough (MSNBC), and Bernard Goldberg in his book, “A Slobbering Love Affair.” Why is it that liberal politicians are seldom held to account, but conservative politicians are subjected to a virtual inquisition?  Candidate Obama was not scrutinized until conservatives like Dinesh D’Souza (immigrant from India) researched his background and  published his findings in his book titled The Roots Of Obama’s Rage. What was Dinesh’s reception in America? The IRS investigated his contributions to conservative candidates (and was found guilty of exceeding the legal limits of personal donations). What do we know about Obama’s college career? Did any main stream journalist investigate the friends and family of Obama in the US and Kenya? By contrast, what do we know about Sarah Palin? About John McCain? About Mitt Romney? More than necessary; some truths hidden in a heap of lies and distortions. Does Harry Reid suffer any consequences for lying on the Senate floor about a presidential candidate not paying his taxes? No, but Harry delights in pointing out that his tactic worked since “Romney did not win”. Then, the mainstream media, as well as President Obama, accuse Fox News of not being a “real news organization.” Frankly, without Fox there is only one viewpoint, a liberal viewpoint. The party that champions “diversity” only allows one candidate for president. Republicans, being more diverse and democratic, allow as many as want to exercise their rights. Furthermore, did not Obama “target” Fox, accusing them of “lies,” and wanted to deny them White House access? This lie about lies is often enough repeated and therefore “must be true.” Of course this is the same president who admonishes only his opposition about being “civil,” as if liberals were not guilty of constant incivility. Yet, only conservatives are rudely and often violently interrupted in their speeches and lectures. They are denied commencement addresses, if found to be “too conservative”. Have you ever seen conservatives interrupting liberals in their lecturing? The president is quick to lecture conservatives about not “jumping to conclusions” when a rare exposition of a liberal mistake is broadcast, but jumps to such conclusions himself quite freely: remember the Harvard incident, and the more recent police shootings of Black Americans? How many people remember stories ridiculing conservatives and Republicans vs. liberals? Could it be because of the frequent replay of one but not the other? You will understand if you study the left’s favorite “instructor” Saul Alinsky. In his book, “Rules for Radicals,” he points out that “ridicule is man’s most potent weapon” (Rule No. 5).

Published in the Telegraph Herald (Dubuque, IA) Saturday May 23, 2015

Liberty Embraced

“Man is born free, yet is in chains everywhere”, was the bold proclamation of the Age of Enlightenment, an age in which the idea of a Free America saw its foundational genesis. The idea of life, liberty and property had been proclaimed almost a century before the French Revolution generated its own version with these words: Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité. But it took the American Founders to provide the human touch to this notion by adding the notion of Life itself and the Pursuit of Happiness to the gift that is Liberty. Slogans about Liberty abound, but reality has clouded Liberty’s past as well as future. Many are those who shout Liberty from the revolutionary mountain tops, from the professorial lecterns, from community organizations and from global enterprise summits, yet many of us feel not free but contained, constrained by the rules crafted by well-meaning but often misguided leaders. And all too often leaders see individual liberty as a threat to their power to govern.  Oh yes, Liberty is the gift that all freedom loving nations bestow upon their citizens, but is soon abridged by an oppressive  ‘rule of law’, by concerns for fairness, for group sensitivities, and above all by attempts to legislate it, i.e. legislate protection of the weak who will or cannot exercise their Liberty, from those who maximize theirs. Liberty, alas, is an awesome power, life-giving when it is in hands that understand its purpose and consequences in the long term, or a tool for autocrats taking some of that Liberty from the strong and pretend to give it to the weak who have been made afraid of too much Liberty. “Extremism in defense of Liberty is no vice”, said one of our politicians, for often extreme measures need to be taken in its defense, lest oppression by military or political means turn us all into robots or slaves to the state.


August 2014