15 June 2017

Professor Walter Williams on "Hate America Types"

Just quoting the good Doctor here, courtesy of your favorite news clip service:
George Orwell said, “The most effective way to destroy people is to deny and obliterate their own understanding of their history.” In the former USSR, censorship, rewriting of history and eliminating undesirable people became part of Soviets’ effort to ensure that the correct ideological and political spin was put on their history. Deviation from official propaganda was punished by confinement in labor camps and execution. Today there are efforts to rewrite history in the U.S., albeit the punishment is not so draconian as that in the Soviet Union.
And . . .
Removing statues of Confederates and renaming buildings are just a small part of the true agenda of America’s leftists. Thomas Jefferson owned slaves, and there’s a monument that bears his name — the Thomas Jefferson Memorial in Washington, D.C. George Washington also owned slaves, and there’s a monument to him, as well — the Washington Monument in Washington. Will the people who call for removal of statues in New Orleans and Richmond also call for the removal of the Washington, D.C., monuments honoring slaveholders Jefferson and Washington? Will the people demanding a change in the name of J.E.B. Stuart High School also demand that the name of the nation’s capital be changed?
And . . .
Rewriting American history is going to be challenging. Just imagine the task of purifying the nation’s currency. Slave owner George Washington’s picture graces the $1 bill. Slave owner Thomas Jefferson’s picture is on the $2 bill. Slave-owning Union Gen. Ulysses S. Grant’s picture is on our $50 bill. Benjamin Franklin’s picture is on the $100 bill.
And . . .
The job of tyrants and busybodies is never done. When they accomplish one goal, they move their agenda to something else. If we Americans give them an inch, they’ll take a yard. So I say, don’t give them an inch in the first place. The hate-America types use every tool at their disposal to achieve their agenda of discrediting and demeaning our history. Our history of slavery is simply a convenient tool to further their cause.
You may read Dr. Williams's (no relation) piece here.

14 June 2017

The Shenandoah Valley Battlefield Foundation & Common Sense

Part of their public statement on the Charlottesville controversy:
The SVBF has been extremely concerned about the recent removals of historic monuments.  The SVBF does not support the wholesale eradication or removal of plaques, statues, monuments, place names, and other public honors associated with the history and heritage of the United States.  Monuments are, and always have been, important parts of commemorating, memorializing, and telling the story of the Americans – Union and Confederate soldiers, free and enslaved civilians – who lived through the tumultuous Civil War era.

“As an organization established to protect and promote our nation’s Civil War history, we do not support the recent removal of Civil War-related monuments across the nation,” said Keven Walker, Chief Executive Officer of the National Historic District.  “But there is no place in this discussion for the KKK and their fearmongering.  And no place for anyone else who wants to spread hate and promote division.”
More here.

12 June 2017

What About George Washington?

George Washington statue in the Boston Public Garden, Boston, Massachusetts
We continue to see Confederate monuments removed due to their "association with a slave-holding republic." So what about George Washington? He owned slaves. He is the father of a "slave-holding republic." It is "less evil" to own slaves than it is to fight for the Confederacy? When will the moral reformer historian class make the argument for removing all the monuments and statues related to George Washington? When will they call for renaming our nation's capital? If some are going to judge 19th century Americans by 21st century standards, why won't these same individuals do the same with 18th century Americans?

That is the ultimate goal. Not just Washington of course, all the Founders. And all of America's founding principles.

08 June 2017

Drifting Toward a Blue-Red Divorce?

David French of National Review wrote an insightful piece today and raised some interesting points about the future of our republic. It's worth reading. For example:
A civil war results when the desire for unification and domination overrides the desire for separation and self-determination. The American civil war is a classic example. There were grounds for separation — North and South were culturally different on a scale that dwarfs modern divides between red and blue — but the North did not consent. It sought to first unify and then transform the southern states.
He concludes that federalism (a kinder, gentler way of saying "states' rights") will save us from Civil War and from one political faction totally dominating the other:
I don’t believe a civil-war mentality will save America. There are simply too many differences and too many profound disagreements for one side or the other to exercise true political dominance. Red won’t beat blue in the same way that blue beat gray. Adopt the civil-war mentality and you’ll only hasten a potential divorce. No, absent a presently unforeseen unifying ideology, event, or person, the idea that will save America is one of the oldest ideas of the Republic: federalism.
And adds:
So long as we protect the “privileges and immunities” of American citizenship, including all of the liberties enumerated in the Bill of Rights, let California be California and Texas be Texas. De-escalate national politics. Ideas that work in Massachusetts shouldn’t be crammed down the throats of culturally different Tennesseans. Indeed, as our sorting continues, our ability to persuade diminishes. (After all, how can we understand communities we don’t encounter?)
Does that not sound like an argument for states' rights? Of course it does. But French doesn't deny the possibility of separation:
We can either rediscover this federalism, or we may ultimately take a third path — we may choose to separate.
More here.

02 June 2017

America's Founding: A Leftist Venture?

I recently read a comment by a historian that stated, in part:

" . . . it’s more accurate to say that America was founded as an 18th century leftist venture than not."

Ummm . . . no.

But you could accurately say this instead:

"It’s more accurate to say that America was founded as an 18th century classical liberal venture than not."

The Founders would certainly recoil from the intrusive nanny-state and soft tyranny that today's leftists/progressives have heartily embraced. It is the absolute opposite of their worldview. The Founders favored free enterprise, free speech, federalism, liberty, private property and freedom of religion. Does that sound anything like a "leftist venture" that toady's leftists would embrace? Certainly not.

The concept of "liberal" (or "liberalism") has changed since FDR and the Democrat Party have embraced state sponsored social programs, wealth redistribution and power being more centralized at the federal level vs. the state level. Classical liberalism has much more in common with today's political philosophies of libertarianism and conservatism. 

Perhaps a bit over-simplified, but a useful observation would be to state that modern liberalism ("leftists") can trace its roots to Jean-Jacques Rousseau while classic liberalism's (conservatives and libertarians) roots run to John Locke; as noted by Dr. Kim Holmes:
For Americans, the state of nature was very real. It was where individuals were endowed by the Creator with natural rights like life and liberty. Looking largely to John Locke, they believed governments should be instituted to protect those rights.
For the French, it was completely different. They imagined a new order in which everyone naturally loved and cared for one another, but only if all the bad laws and customs of the past were completely destroyed.
If you want an 18th century revolution that would better compare to a "leftist venture", look to France, not America.