Friday, October 30, 2009

The Pete Morin News Service--Editorial #16

Virtual People in a virtual Republic

A little over 220 years ago some rather influential folks got together to discuss, what they considered, taxation without representation. There main complaint was with King George III of England and they let their concerns be known directly to the Crown. The answer they received did nothing to assuage them of their fear that they were mere cogs in the wheels of a distant monarchy. Parliament and the King assured the colonists that they were indeed represented and this form of representation was known as ‘virtual representation.’ By being subjects of the Crown, regardless of whether they had a vote or not, they had, and were being, virtually represented. Needless to say the colonists disagreed with the Crown’s assessment.

Fast forward 220 + years to the present. Living in The People’s Republic of Massachusetts you could look at the Founder’s original complaint and surmise that we are in the exact same predicament. Those of us who espouse conservative thinking and look for a government that limits itself in scope and law have realized that we have no representation. Mindless liberal spending in the name of compassion and social justice has overwhelmed the idea of limited government. Backbreaking debt and unsustainable deficits have clouded our sight far into the future. Ted Kennedy’s vacant Senate seat will be filled by another liberal ‘do-gooder’ hell bent on bringing his, or her, rapturous form of social egalitarianism to the body politic. Those who may oppose such schemes are without compassion and to be ridiculed as uncaring and shortsighted. Their concerns are rooted in a past that has no relevance to the present day. With this agenda in mind the liberals will attack the benighted conservative carrion and pronounce all they accomplish as right and true.

So, are those of us who disagree with this agenda really represented in both the State House and the White House? I say no; I say we have been denied a voice in this despicable democratic takeover. Our concerns are not heard nor even listened to. Democrats don’t concern themselves with trivial niceties. They are on a mission. They will implement their form of retribution on what they consider the fortunate class because they must create divisiveness and rancor to have their nefarious plans take root. They care nothing about a Constitution or any other antiquated document that purports to place man and law in a civil setting. This is their goal; the power of a statist, born to lead a nation of lesser human beings.

And so it goes. We, of this lesser breed, only want those entrusted with power to be servants to the people; to have an allegiance to those people and to the document that defined our founding. But our hopes will go unrealized. We will survive with what possessions we have largely intact, but our liberty and freedom to choose our lifestyle will only be a dream of what might have been and what once was. We will be represented; we will be virtual people in our virtual country with virtual representation.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

The Pete Morin News Service--Editorial #15

This article was published in The American Thinker on October 30, 2009

The Pillars of Liberal Progressivism

The United States of America rests at a crossroads today that is every bit as dire a situation as Americans faced during the second world war. In fact, it may be even more so.

Liberal Progressives have fashioned so strong a hold on the American landscape that to escape its clutches may no longer be possible for most of its citizens. What I call the ‘Pillars of Liberal Progressivism’ has infected America with a virus so deadly that attempts to fight its virulent behavior has become extremely difficult.

What are these pillars that progressives have worked so hard to infiltrate and control.

1) University Academia: No institution was more instrumental than the university in shaping the minds and behavior of the young. Students schooled in the writings of radical revolutionaries such as Mao, Lenin, Trotsky and lesser known malcontents such as Alinsky, Zinn and Chomsky spread their noxious fumes throughout the halls of academia. The ‘true believer’ filled his pliant mind with the writings of these disaffected statists. The earlier attempts of scholars in the twenties and thirties to poison the minds of the young were but a pretext for this new assault. The Port Huron Statement in 1962 and the founding of SDS formed the initial assault on the staid halls of higher learning. Unable to contain or challenge properly this misguided agenda, academia floundered in its response to this radical approach. Aiding and abetting the radicals was the US Governments’ entry to an ill-advised conflict in Southeast Asia. Combine the two and University administrations in several key bastions of higher learning fell to the radical elements. The virus had taken a tenuous hold. It would grow and infect future leaders to prey upon unsuspecting minds, inculcating them with a sense of guilt, radical redress and egalitarian fervor.

2) Law Schools: Those infected with this radical new virus could now expand their activities to include law schools. What better way to attain a redress of grievances against a racist, sexist, homophobic nation than to change, or alter, the Constitution. New radical lawyers imbued with this bubonic sickness attacked our nations laws at the principle level. Judicial activists unleashed a torrent of bad constitutional law that would make any radical proud. The links that bound us to our founding were now severely strained.

3)Primary and Secondary education: The lessons learned in academia could now be spread to the more basic levels of education. Rather than parents teaching their children tolerance and good moral underpinnings, the hard left would give no quarter in acceptance of gay lifestyles and gay marriage, wealth redistribution, equality of outcome and disparagement of conservatism. These became the staple means to indoctrination of the very young. Occasionally, there have been outbursts from parents, but this has not deterred the righteous from their purposeful mission.

4)Entertainment: The hard left could now attack the entertainment industry. The poor, limp, listless minds of this industry were ripe for the picking. What could be more important than compassion for the poor, not getting involved in military conflict and equality for all those who had suffered under the dreaded capitalist state. The film industry offered itself in humble prostration to these noble ideas. Films depicting the evils of capitalism and the inadequacy of the free market spawned a whole new generation of useful idiots to spread the biblical word.

5)News Media: This last pillar would prove to be one of the most important to infiltrate. With the help of academia and entertainment, however, it was possible to invade the news room without too great a difficulty. Vietnam, once again, gave a ready means to achieve control of what was once considered an inviolable institution and move it inexorably to the left. One can remember the hallowed utterance of Walter Cronkite as he intoned the uselessness of continued combat in Southeast Asia. What Cronkite deemed to be lost must surely be; so ingrained in the American psyche was his preeminence for reporting the facts, that those facts must certainly be correct.

The infection of the newsroom continues unabated today with such lackluster cronies as Brian Williams, Charles Gibson and Katie Curic reporting a brand of news so skewed to the left that embarrassment would be its best description. Think of President Obama’s reference to sleeping with Brian Williams and words lose meaning to convey a sense of outrage. Beneath the veneer of an Obama attempt at humor was a major news outlet willing to do the administration’s bidding.

These are the pillars Liberal Progressives have safely ensconced in their method of attack on America. It may be beyond hope that we can restore our country to a more reasonable state. Those of us who can must make our voices heard to all of the above institutions. We have to come in from the wilderness of being afraid to confront liberals on their ground. We must fight the bankrupt ideas of socialism in academia through the media. The internet has given us an outlet that must not be squandered; its importance being, perhaps, a last stand.

In other articles I’ve written how we must find strength in ourselves; to define our character so that future generations will know what life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness really are. We must articulate what we mean by real freedom; a freedom and equality that will inspire our children and grandchildren to uphold these precious ideals. There is no time to lose. It’s been repeated on many occasions, but should be said again-- If we don’t do it, who will? If not now, when?

Friday, October 16, 2009

The Pete Morin News Service--editorial #14

This article was published in American Thinker on October 17, 2009

These Dis-United States

The public rancor and divisiveness that exists today in our political and cultural debates is nothing new, having been a staple of our Republic/Democracy for its entire history. There are, however, disturbing elements to these debates that one could surmise to be more destructive than fruitful to its continued existence.

All elected Federal officials solemnly profess to “preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States of America”, but hardly any admit that what they do, in actuality, destroys or alters said document. Congress and the Executive Branch have been on a relentless assault to provide for the benighted masses what they don’t seem to want to provide for themselves; at least this is what liberal/progressives have been projecting since, at least, the time of FDR. The masses, content with accepting the beneficence of the empowered elite, swoon before these attempts to provide cradle to grave assurance of a life free of the hindrance of self improvement.

So, this liberal/progressive agenda finds itself at the zenith of power and influence with ‘Cap and Trade’ and ‘ObamaCare’. There may be voices, shrill and loud, crying from the margins of a disaffected portion of the populace that object to another attack on the Constitution. Their view of a Constitution having been ravaged by yet another assault on the originalist interpretation may be correct, but progressivism simply refers to these attacks as ‘wrongheaded’ or ‘outdated’. The founders certainly could not have foreseen the difficulties and complexities of modern man . A Constitution that could not adapt to such new challenges could not survive, says the statist. It must become a ‘living and breathing’ document, free of original intent. And so it has become.

The liberal/progressive movement has convinced modern man that to satisfy his material needs it is not necessary to labor exhaustingly in pursuit of said needs; but much more beneficial to modern man to simply reallocate resources from those who can afford to do so. The foundations of the welfare state having been laid, the free market struggles to provide for its legitimate members as well as those of a lesser inclination. The mixed economy may go on for years before the weight of redistributive legislation finally brings the golden goose to a prone position.

The tipping point, however, has finally been reached. Better than 50% of the class of lesser inclination now feed at the trough of Federal largess. They are satiated and satisfied by the exuberance of the power elite. They are now but tools to that elite; to be fashioned as the ruling class desires. They can no more disenfranchise themselves from their largess than those who desire freedom could but snap their fingers and be loosed from their chains. Those who advocate the redistribution of wealth have succeeded; democracy has trumped the Republic and the tyranny of the majority has taken shape.

There will continue to be elections and small changes in the makeup of the Legislative and Executive, but it will be mere window dressing to the failed experiment; that being the existence of a viable Republic. The United States will become the ‘Dis-United States’. Those states that can extricate themselves from the failed experiment will do so. Those that have believed a Constitution is unchanged for the ages will depart Democratic entanglement and form their own new, more perfect union. The new union may be small and certainly less powerful than its Federal predecessor, but it will have as its motto the belief that men are free to decide their own future, not subject to the tyranny of a majority. That its currency will not be debased; that limited government lives up to its charter and that citizens be the rulers instead of sheep to be fleeced.

In her great novel, Atlas Shrugged, Ayn Rand saw such a future for those concerned with the dignity and freedom of mankind. When it was written it was just a novel, hardly a vision for what a country could become; that vision, that future may now be here. We need only be brave enough to face the present which was the future and determine who will be our John Galt.

Then it starts anew…We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal…..

Thursday, October 8, 2009

The Pete Morin News Service--Editorial #13

The healthcare debate is coming to a conclusion, or somewhat of a conclusion as far as government legislation is concerned. The final draft is, perhaps, two months away, but the consensus from the Democrats is that there will be legislation and it may contain a public option, or a trigger for a public option.

The sad thing about this whole episode of government involvement in the industry is that it’s completely unnecessary. There are numerous options available for government to consider without direct action being taken.

1) Allow insurance to be sold across state lines: This one change will affect the cost of premiums more than any other issue. The cost among states varies greatly and selling across state lines would have an immediate effect upon premium costs. The average premium cost for all fifty states in 2006 was approximately $2600/ year for two people. In Massachusetts it was $8500/year. Do you think individuals and couples in Massachusetts would welcome a chance to lower their premium costs? Insurance providers in Mass. must have a rather large lobby in Washington, DC.

2) Reduce mandates required by Federal and State authorities: Currently, there are over 2100 mandates that must be complied with at the Federal and State level. Let’s say you’re a woman. Well, you have erectile dysfunction as a requirement in your insurance policy. Let’s say you’re a man. You have to have invitro fertilization in your policy. Sounds crazy, doesn’t it? There are many more requirements in everyone’s policies that bear no relation to the person being able to use the coverage. Specials interests must have huge lobbies in both the Federal and State governments.

3) Tort reform: Howard Dean had it right when he said that the reason that tort reform was off the table was because the administration didn’t want to take on the trial lawyer lobby. At least he was honest, for a change and quite unusual for a politician. The lawyer lobby contributes heavily to the Democratic party. Make awards for malpractice reasonable and billions would be saved.

For additional ideas I’ll refer you to the web site The Council for Affordable Health Insurance lists numerous other possibilities to make health insurance and healthcare affordable. But don’t wait for the Democrats to present these ideas anytime soon. The question remains--WHY? Ideology plays a huge role in politician’s and their supporters thinking. Liberals tend to believe that government can answer for the private market’s inequities. I beg to differ. Government has not made the United States of America a prosperous nation; it’s the reduced role of government that has made this country the most productive, the most prosperous nation in the history of the world.

Soon we’ll find out if the Democrats, or Republicans are right about the future of healthcare. By the year 2020 we’ll know based on whether healthcare is affordable and accessible. May the best ideas win.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Pete Morin News Service--Editorial #12

There must be hundreds of books that I would like to read, but there's so little time. Also, I tend to read that which I agree with rather than that which grates low on my opinion meter. So, I muddle on looking for cheap knowledge and a quick learn in mediocrity that surrounds us every day.

There passed a book on my desk today that gave me pause; gave my senses a brief whiff of expression that remains timeless. Its appeal applied not so much to its content, but to the title. "On the Shoulders of Giants; The Great Works of Physics and Astronomy" made me think not necessarily of those sciences and scientists, but those of our founding; the giants that thought to conceive of our Republic. What great minds they must have been. Not just minds but great souls as well. Think for just a moment the incredible difficulties they had to overcome. They had to discern the good from the bad in terms of government, economics, leadership and character.

The task they undertook was no small one. Those men saw the examples of government in that of King George III of England and Louis XVI of France. They had enough of an inkling to know that what they saw was insufficient to the existence of modern man. In paraphrasing Jefferson, man did not come into this world to be treated as a horse, saddled, booted and spurred by some privileged class. In the natural world men are created equal and before Nature's God they should all be so. The document that expounded this remains one of the world's most enlightening treatises.

This expression led to a Revolution; freeing men from the tyranny of imposed rule. By no means was it perfect since nothing we can conceive should be thought to attain perfection. Nevertheless, it brought to life a new form of government; self rule with self determination in the realm of economics and leadership and, ultimately, lead to a change in our national character. We were now the United States of America; Conceived in Liberty, a nation of free men.

Something has changed in our national psyche, however. What has survived for 200 + years has lost its appeal, its desire and in essence our character. Rather than look to our founding documents to understand our greatness, we elect leaders who worship at the altar of majority rule. We have re-introduced the notion of tyranny of the majority; a 'one man, one vote' rule meant to silence those who have no desire to be saddled, booted and spurred. The founders knew the dangers of democracy and tried diligently to avoid the pitfall of its inception in the Constitution. They purposefully created a nation that was a Republic; a Federal Government that addressed only those issues that the states could not address by themselves. The States ratified the Constitution based on this premise; they would relinquish only those powers which they could not satisfactorily perform themselves. They gave the Federal Government only those enumerated powers listed in the founding. The United States of America and its Constitution was thus born.

When we think of those giants that led to this founding, we think of them as antiquated with no conception of a modern world. What we don't seem to understand is they knew perfectly well the insatiable nature of man and his thirst for power. They knew the dangers of democracy and tried to keep a government from overstepping its bounds by restricting its scope and reach. They left us enough information and advice to confront any problem. We, however, find ourselves much wiser and informed than these brilliant men. Rather then amend the Constitution when necessary, our current leaders simply propose and pass what they deem fit for the modern culture. We are no longer masters, but servants of the new democracy.