Uncommon Sense

politics and society are, unfortunately, much the same thing

Can black people be trusted with freedom?

Today is election day where I live, for local offices. I was asked to manage one property where the voting will occur. The facility is a church, which is a 501(c)(3) organization, so the normal rules forbidding campaigning on premises were supposedly in effect. I met one of the councilmen running for re-election and he was holding a campaign sign with his name on it. So I approached him and asked about the campaign rules. After a bit of friendly chat he and I both got confirmation that the contract allowing the use of the facility for voting including an exception for the campaigning rules. So all was well, and he continued his last minute campaigning for the day.

During our brief conversation the discussion moved from the rules about forbidden campaigning to illegal exceptions to that rule. We touched on the fact that “black churches” can at whim violate this separation between tax-exempt groups and political activism. As if that wasn’t bad enough, this councilman then told me something shocking. Being intimately involved in the political process, he told me the ballots handed out to voters at black churches are already filled in. If you don’t realize what that means, it means the people who vote at these churches are told how to vote and apparently are not given the option to think for themselves. And he was telling me this as if he was proud of it, since it was his name written on those ballots. “I’ve got the black vote” he said.

Given our historically ignorant American culture, it’s probably necessary to explain something in the history of black voting. When the KKK was formed they did many things to support their racist agenda, but one of these despicable acts included voter intimidation – which is an understatement. Blacks who were not murdered were often terrorized and told they would be killed if they voted Republican. Not long after the war between the states, the newly freed slaves voted Republican, because that’s who fought their Democrat oppressors. This is part of the reason for the 14th and 15th Amendments to the U.S. Constitution. Although slavery was officially banned by the 13th Amendment in 1865, by 1870 the 14th and 15th Amendments were also ratified. That’s 3 new amendments to the constitution in 5 years time – all related to the issue of slavery. Where the 13th Amendment bans the institution of slavery, the 14th addresses several things. But the 15th Amendment specifically protects only one thing: the right to vote. The KKK knew the emancipated slaves would vote against them during any election, thus the use of force and terrorism to prevent blacks from voting, or at least from voting Republican. Because of such shenanigans the intent of the 15th Amendment wasn’t truly realized until about a century later.

Another dirty Democrat tactic was known as Jim Crow. For decades after the 13th Amendment banned slavery, these ordinances and other such laws were designed to treat blacks as non-persons, as second-class citizens. Many Jim Crow laws focused specifically on voting, adding absurd requirements or restrictions on the right of blacks to vote. Voting was considered an essential right and an essential aspect of what it means to be a free people. That’s why it was so important to the KKK and their political superiors to control how black people voted.

We have a very different idea about voting today. Our culture seems to have forgotten the vital importance in the right to vote. Politicians and political wonks haven’t forgotten it, but the general population has. And it is astonishing how black people are still treated today regarding this right. But it’s like the flip side of the same coin. Instead of trying to prevent blacks from voting, there is overwhelming pressure to vote a certain way. This pressure appears in the form of telling black people how to vote (such as described above) and in ridiculing black people who don’t vote the way “they are supposed to”. Today, a black person voting Republican is treated like a “traitor to the race”. The myth about the two major political parties switching is a powerful political tool for Democrats. The Southern Strategy indeed was an brief and despicable attempt by the Republican Party to siphon off racist Democrat votes; and thankfully it was a failure. But today it seems as if the only people who get accused of being racist today are Republicans. The only real racists I personally know are life long Democrats. As is the case on many controversial issues, here too there is a major disconnect between what people think they know and what is actually true. That’s what propaganda is for.

The Republican and Democrat parties have indeed evolved over the generations, but they have never switched sides. Now instead of supporting overt slavery, Democrats support keeping people (especially minorities) dependent on government programs. Now, instead of being racist for supporting slavery, people are called racist for not supporting government dependency. Republicans are still promoting the same basic concepts such as equal before the law, and people being judged by the content of their character as one famous Republican once said. Democrats have totally switched their narrative innumerable times, but not their ultimate agenda. They latched onto the “Progressive” label in the early 20th century, which turned out to be a horrible philosophy. When that moniker ended up turning too many voters away they called themselves Liberals instead, which turned out to be Progressives with a new name. Now they’re back to using the term Progressives. Dependency is the new slavery – convincing people they can’t survive in the world without government hand outs. But these hand outs will continue only as long as the recipients vote “like they are supposed to”. Democrats are still trying to control how people vote, a time honored approach in the party. They are now using the carrot instead of the stick, bribes instead of threats or violence, but it is still voter control.

Progressive Republicans try the same tactics today, thinking bribes are what win elections. Unfortunately, they’re right. But conservative Republicans still prefer using reasonable persuasion, which simply doesn’t work well when people have been trained to expect grand promises, only to find out later the politicians can’t really deliver. Pandering works. And victimization is one of the best forms of pandering. Training black people to blindly follow the Democrat Party is very easy today. This was something much harder to do in the years immediately following the civil war. But when most of the country has been convinced, with no evidence, that the parties have switched sides, it’s easy to build up the voter base with promises of more dependency.

Despite these advantages, some threats to the Democrat voter base still exist. One of the most fearsome threats is a black voter with the gumption to think for him/her self. This is the prime reason black public schools are designed the way they are, so black people can be kept ignorant of any number of things in the name of education. But some rise above the system. When these threats are dealt with is when we see the ugly side of the propaganda machine. This is when we see the political left revealing who they really are: when they try to put black people back “in their place”. Names like Uncle Tom, oreo, and other blatantly racist terms get thrown about with the defenders of civil liberties remaining silent. The notion that black people are just as capable of succeeding in life as anyone else is ridiculed as racist. Even looking at American history is deemed racist, especially the parts where Democrats are unquestionably the guilty party. It seems Democrats don’t trust black people with their own freedom and must be lead like cattle to think and vote the proper way. After all, when left to think for themselves, it looks like black people might vote for someone else.

campaign, conservative, constitution, culture, Democrats, elections, freedom, government, history, ideology, left wing, liberalism, oppression, pandering, politics, propaganda, racism, racist, Republicans

Filed under: campaign, conservative, constitution, culture, Democrats, elections, freedom, government, history, ideology, left wing, liberalism, oppression, pandering, politics, propaganda, racism, racist, Republicans

We must like oppression

Most people agree that money effectively is power. This doesn’t necessarily mean power over others; it could just as easily mean self empowerment – freedom. By this reasoning we can say wealth is freedom, and few would disagree with this premise.

This idea that wealth is freedom is one reason behind the progressive Occupy movement. In the leftwing mindset wealth is not created, it merely exists. And there is a vast but limited quantity of wealth in the world. In this mindset only so much wealth can be distributed, so it should be distributed as equitably as possible. After all, wealth is freedom, and fairness demands we all be equally free.

In the progressive mindset a concentration of wealth in the hands of only a few is tantamount to oppression of the rest of us. The prime imperative of fairness requires this inequitable distribution of wealth to be rectified. So far, this philosophy is at least consistent, making sense with itself even if not with reality. But this is where the philosophy begins to turn on itself. What a leftwing mindset neglects is that if money is power, power is also power.

The power to control other people is not liberty. It may be a “freedom” of the powerful to control others, but to be controlled is not “freedom” except the freedom from the burden of making one’s own decisions. Most of us would acknowledge that, in order for liberty to exist, there must be limits on our individual freedom so that we do not infringe upon the liberty of others. That means government is necessary for liberty to exist.

No one is “anti-government”. Not even anarchists. Anarchists, for what ever reasons, seem to be easily swayed from a supposedly total non-government ideal to a total government ideal. This devotion to absolute freedom is no devotion at all, but merely an excuse for some other agenda, often one they are not even aware of because anarchists seldom bother to think through that far. Even in a world of no government, laws evolve. Clans or gangs form, and a pecking order results. If there is a leader, there is someone telling others what to do. That is not anarchy. True anarchy does not exist among the human species for very long – if at all.

Limited government is not anarchy either, and no one supporting limited government is calling for the dismissal of government. In fact, those favoring limited government do so because they believe too much government results in tyranny. And they’re right. Just as there is such a thing as too little government, so there is such a thing as too much government. That means in order for liberty to exist, there must be limits on what government can do.

But the language used in modern politics doesn’t match the real life situation. Limited government advocates are called names like anti-government. One cannot support limited government (which, by definition, is supporting the existence of government) and be anti-government at the same time. Those making the accusation of “anti-government” pretend to support liberty. This is a remarkable contradiction. Accusing someone else of being anti-government so as to support more government, in the name of freedom.

Power is power. And as the saying goes, power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. And how does government accomplish any of the things it does? By exercising power over others. Government is the practice of telling other people what they can and can’t do. When government passes a regulation or law telling you what you can or can’t do, that is a choice taken away from you. Sometimes this is necessary, other times we are told it is necessary when it is really not. Diminishing your choices can be considered diminishing your freedom. That can be necessary when your decisions affect others, but even then laws should require a high standard of justification. Today it seems a majority of our fellow citizens gladly and quietly comply with anything government wishes to do.

In order to do its work, government must also be funded. How does government fund itself? By taxation. What is taxation? Taxation is the confiscation of wealth.

Now, as mentioned before, wealth is freedom. Does this mean taxation is the confiscation of freedom? Yes it does. Money you earned that was taken from you is wealth you no longer have. Confiscating money is also confiscating opportunity. Those advocating more government and higher taxes “on the rich” have no idea they are promoting greater confiscation of freedom from us all. If raising taxes or cutting taxes for “the rich” applied only to “the rich” we might be able to make a different argument. But “the rich” is a political ploy that easily shuts down most people’s capacity to think for themselves, as it is designed to do. The term “the rich” can garner instant emotional support for anything hiding behind the propaganda, without question.

Those advocating higher taxes or more regulation typically suggest that without such government intervention businesses would cause tremendous harm because they are greedy and corrupt. Because government doesn’t have a reputation for being greedy or corrupt, and it never causes any harm, right? We are to believe government does only good things when trying to act on our behalf.

You may like the idea of an Obamaphone provided to other people free by the government, but you may not like actually having one. If you’ve seen one of these free government phones you realize it’s crap. If you spent your own money on a phone you probably would never purchase one like the Obamaphone. You would want something better. The idea that the government is helping us by giving us crap is backwards. We have no idea of the opportunity cost involved in providing poor people with a free sub par phone.

If you’ve ever seen government housing you would probably have the same reaction as you would to the Obamaphone. At first you may feel like a good person for supporting giving housing to the poor, but you would be unlikely to ever purchase similar housing for yourself with your own money. Government programs offer typically sub par services and products to the people.

But in the name of fairness American society sprints leftward toward a progressive utopia, with ever increasing taxes so government can provide us with more sub par crap. Those relying on food assistance, government housing, social security, government education, etc., the many social assistance programs, know very well how trapped people can become by being so dependent on government crap. And we want more sub par handouts, the latest being health care.

We are paying, by force of law, for inadequate government hand outs and some how we consider this a great thing. The idea of allowing people to keep their own wealth is considered dangerous in our society, which contradicts our attitude of letting government have ever increasing power. If concentrated wealth in the hands of a few is a bad thing, why is concentrating both wealth and power in the hands of government such a good thing? We have to get government approval to do so many things in life. We don’t even know how many taxes we pay. Even the IRS can’t keep up with all the tax rules and regulations Congress has passed into law.

The United States government is so massive, and confiscates so much wealth in the form of taxes (not just income taxes) we have no clue how much liberty has been taken away from us (just in the form of money, not to mention in regulations). Liberty, not hand outs, is what makes it possible for people to raise themselves out of poverty. We need not presume poverty is a life long affliction. So one might wonder if liberty or prosperity are really the goal here; perhaps fairness trumps these things, in which case liberty and prosperity are forfeited so society can be made more economically equal.

Progressives tell us they support freedom. And they do, as long as we’re talking about pleasure. The political left seems to favor almost moral anarchy concerning anything related to having fun. But they also want every other aspect of life regulated. While screaming for the freedom to have sex with who ever you want or to put what ever substances you want into your body, on the other hand they want government to regulate or tax your right to make a living, to protect yourself, to travel, to practice religion, what health care you’re entitled to, what food or drink you can consume, and more. We’re even seeing increased regulation of what we are allowed to think and speak. And all this under the guise of fairness.

I don’t call this trend fairness. I call it oppression. For generations now conservatives have been ridiculed as a people who want to control other people’s lives. And there is some truth to that, since one application of a “conservative” mindset holds that regulating oneself is the best form of regulation – if we would bother to do it. But today it is progressives who devote themselves to controlling people. While calling for freedom they are the very champions of oppression, through the mighty hand of government. Progressives call paying taxes an act of patriotism, when in fact it is the confiscation of freedom. They call wanting less regulation of life dangerous and greedy. Somehow how wanting to keep more of your own money is greed, but wanting to take more of your money from you is not greed. Punishing the rich while exempting our rich government and rich politicians and treating them as heros does not match the supposed desire for fairness. Treating success as evil and something that needs to be changed is not a desire for freedom. And what is the recommended agent of change? It is government intervention, which inevitably decreases freedom. Apparently, our society likes oppression, because we demand more of it every day. But let us not call it oppression. It sounds much better if we call it fairness or equality or even social justice.

Get your “Concentrated Power” swag here – wear and share uncommon sense. This message states the following:

Money, effectively, is power. If concentrating wealth in the hands of a few is such a bad thing why is concentrating power in the hands of even fewer such a good thing?

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Filed under: bailout, culture, economy, elitism, entitlements, freedom, funding, government, greed, hypocrisy, ideology, left wing, opinion, philosophy, public policy, regulation, socialism, unintended consequences

Do we really want MLK’s dream?

We may not really want to realize Martin Luther King Jr’s dream. When he described a world in which people are judged not by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character, what he was describing was a racially color blind society. But we don’t really want that.

Don’t get me wrong, a racially color blind society is an ideal we should be working toward, we just don’t want to. Let me explain what I mean.

There are people who believe, in order to achieve a racially color blind society, we should treat people as people, and not look at the world through the lens of race. We should treat race as irrelevant. But those who believe and practice this also think society should not impose special rules on us which reenforce racial divisions. In this mentality, racial color blindness means we socially and legally treat people as no different from one another, where the color of one’s skin does not matter. There is a word for people who think like this. We call them racists.

What?! Yes, we call them racists. You already know there are people in the United States who make a living on racism. They foment racial strife, ascribe racial animosity for supporting one policy or opposing another. They tell minorities they are victims, and try to make them believe slavery is only an election away if they don’t vote the proper way. They take simple or even ridiculous comments and distort them to mean something racial – things like black whole, Chicago, or voter fraud. And what do we call people who do these things? We call them defenders of civil liberties or something similar.

If we were willing to be honest we would admit there is so much money and power in fighting against racism that racism must be kept alive, or at least the fear of it, in order for the money and power to keep flowing. And battle lines have to be drawn. The defenders of civil liberties can say and do outrageously racist things, and get a pass. Those who actually try to practice racial color blindness can be called racist for abandoning racial concepts entirely. Real racism still happens, but pales in comparison to the false racism that has to be invented to keep the power structure in place.

If we really wanted to live MLK’s dream, we would be willing to move on. We would be eager to treat race as irrelevant. We would not pretend there has been no progress against racism since the 1960s. We would not see racism even when it isn’t there. We would acknowledge and respond appropriately to racism when it really happens – instead of ignoring it just because the perpetrator happens to be a member of a particular political party. We would not make a publicity orgy out of a terrible tragedy and pretend race had anything to do with it, and distort, hide, or even manufacture evidence to make it a racial issue, as was done with the Zimmerman trial. We would not eagerly contort words or actions so as to interject racial motivation into a situation, as is the MO of some political talking heads masquerading as journalists. We would not gladly embrace public policies assuming certain people groups are incompetent and cannot survive without their own personal government hand outs, and sub-standard hand outs at that. We would not mindlessly defer to accusations made by people who make a living fighting racism, while pretending their financial incentive for doing so has nothing to do with anything. We would not pretend the two major political parties have switched sides so as to blame one for the racist atrocities committed by the other.

So I ask, do we really want MLK’s dream? I don’t think we do, not as a society anyway. Some of us do, and we are treated as enemies of humanity for it.

Race Card deck

Race Card deck

Race baiters, civil rights charlatans, racial opportunists, and progressives in general needlessly interject race into debate. It’s time to call them on it. Get your Race Card deck today. 54 copies of the Race Card. You’ll have no problem finding opportunities to give Race Cards to those who deserve them. A quick way to make the point that race really should be a non-issue.

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bias, bigotry, culture, discrimination, hypocrisy, ideology, indoctrination, left wing, pandering, philosophy, political correctness, propaganda, public policy, racism, racist, relativism

Filed under: bias, bigotry, culture, discrimination, hypocrisy, ideology, indoctrination, left wing, pandering, philosophy, political correctness, propaganda, public policy, racism, racist, relativism




August 2013