Posts Tagged ‘National Socialism’
Why Socialism Won’t Work
This teacher is truly a genius ~~~~~
An economics professor at a local college made a statement that he had never failed a single student, but had once failed an entire class. That class had insisted that Obama’s socialism worked and that no one would be poor and no one would be rich, a great equalizer. The professor then said, “OK, we will have an experiment in this class on Obama’s plan.” All grades would be averaged and everyone would receive the same grade so no one would fail and no one would receive an A.
After the first test, the grades were averaged and everyone got a B. The students who studied hard were upset and the students who studied little were happy. As the second test rolled around, the students who studied little had studied even less and the ones who studied hard decided they wanted a free ride too so they studied little. The second test average was a D! No one was happy. When the 3rd test rolled around, the average was an F.
The scores never increased as bickering, blame and name-calling all resulted in hard feelings and no one would study for the benefit of anyone else. All failed, to their great surprise. The professor told them that socialism would also ultimately fail because when the reward is great, the effort to succeed is great, but when government takes all the reward away, no one will try or want to succeed.
Like a sleight-of-hand-artist on a busy street with a briefcase that turns into a table, three walnuts shells and a pea the perpetually re-elected and their town criers in the Corporations Once Known as the mainstream Media appear to be perennially able to fool the perpetually distracted by pulling a metaphorical quarter out of their ear.
I know a professional revolutionary. We grew up together. He has correctly diagnosed America’s disease as a corporate cult in a symbiotic relationship with a corrupt government. He deftly outlines the general theory, although not the specifics of how crony capitalists and political hacks have crafted a system wherein money laundering has become national policy. The political hacks fleece the sheeple through taxes and inflation. They give the money to their accomplices in the flimflam corporations who funnel huge chunks of cash back to the hacks for re-election. Every few years the sheeple rouse themselves out of their media induced coma long enough to be herded to the polls to vote for more of the same.
Yes, the professional revolutionaries and their government educated followers have correctly diagnosed the disease. However, they have prescribed poison instead of medicine. Their answer to the curse of Corporatism’s National Socialism is less nationalism and more socialism. Since corporatism has built a coffin our body politic cannot seem to claw its way out of, he prescribes cutting out the crony capitalists and giving the whole operation to the political hacks. In other words if the black shirts have ruined the country let’s try the reds. That would be as transparent as fighting the most horrendous war in human history because Hitler attempted to pull Poland into his freedom smothering embrace and then giving Poland to Stalin.
Headlines and talking heads scream for days, “The Super Committee cannot fail or the sky will fall!” Endless hours in the 24 hour news cycle are devoted to debating, “Will the Super Committee succeed or will they fail?” Meanwhile most of the sheeple are consumed with concern about the NBA strike, a celebrity drowning thirty years ago, or was Kim’s wedding a set-up all along. Then we’re told he Super Committee failed accompanied by endless squabbling about who caused the failure.
It is all nothing but Kabuki, a form of Japanese drama based on popular legends and characterized by elaborate costumes, stylized acting.
Remember how the Super Committee became so super? It didn’t come from another planet with a red sun and lower gravity. It was instead the Frankenstein created as the cover for another rise in the debt ceiling. The Tea Party had just made a Herculean effort in the 2010 elections and achieved an historical sweep of the House of Representatives. Over sixty newly minted congressmen owed their seat at the table of plenty to the greatest grassroots movement America has seen in generations. They had campaigned on changing the culture of corruption in Washington, stopping the deficit spending, severing the cord to the crony capitalists, and paying down the national debt.
Before they could even arrive the Republican leadership colluded with a recently humiliated inexperienced president and a recently repudiated Democratic leadership to extend the Bush tax cuts in exchange for more spending in the lamest of all lame duck sessions. Then as soon as the fresh troops arrive they raise their hands in salute to the same old Republican leadership, renew the patriot Act, pass a series of continuing resolutions allowing the drunken sailors to continue spending, and then vote to raise the debt ceiling by another few trillions. Oh but they fought! They wrangled and they refused to give the Spender in Chief more trillions of our great grandchildren’s money unless he agreed to a Super Committee backed up by automatic cuts and automatic tax increases in future deficits totaling trillions of dollars in cuts. This was drama worthy of As Washington Turns. If it was joke it wouldn’t be funny.
To begin with the Super Committee wasn’t filled with deficit hawks and balanced budget advocates. It was instead filled with the most partisan members from both wings of the Party of Power guaranteeing there would be no settlement. Obviously the plan all along was for the automatic cuts and taxes to come into play, over the next ten years. In other words the spendaholics of this Congress are going to place limits on the credit card of following Congresses who have the ability to vote away the limits any time they want to. How could that ever fail?
The smoke and mirrors of political theater is meant to hide the fact that all they’re arguing over is reducing the yearly deficits way off there in the future somewhere. All they ever discussed was slowing the rate of increase. Even if the most draconian plan so far introduced by the young firebrand Representative Ryan had been adopted the budget still went up every year, and the national debt still grew every year. And though there would have been more and more spending with no end to the red ink in sight Ryan was portrayed as pushing Grandma off the cliff and a large percentage of the population believes it. This is baseline budgeting wherein the proposed budget becomes the base for what is cut. In other words our leaders can cut all day and the spending still goes up.
It is time to tell our hypnotized fellow citizens to take the blinders off. Wake up! The house is on fire and the firemen are pouring gasoline on the flames.
The system is broke and it is becoming very clear that all the king’s horses and all the king’s men can’t put this thing together again. The spending goes on every second of every minute of every hour of every day. The tax code that ostensibly is designed to pay for it all is in reality a bewildering maze meant to trap those unsophisticated enough not to hire an army of tax lawyers and accountants while legally recognized persons such as GE file 57,000 page tax returns on fourteen billion in profits and pays no tax at all.
While the hemorrhaging of our descendants wealth goes on night and day we are being set up for the next battle to raise the debt ceiling, the balanced budget amendment. Even if this long threatened turkey could finally make it to the block what good is a balanced budget amendment? The spendthrifts we call a government can still spend all they want as long as they raise enough money to pretend to cover at least the on budget portion of the swag. And where do you think they will raise the money? They will either raise taxes or print money. Either way we pay so they can play. What we need is a spending amendment that limits spending to a prescribed percentage of the GDP.
At one time the best tongue in cheek advice for coping with the policies of the convention of confidence men masquerading as the American government was get a government job and study Spanish. Now the situation has descended even beyond the black humor of that cynical joke. Today the best advice may be to hunker in the bunker, store food, and learn enough History so you can tell those who come after what America used to be.
Last year I thought it was time to take the gloves off and tell America the emperor has no clothes. To do so this advocate of the Constitution and limited government wrote The Constitution Failed. A book which places current events in a constitutional and historical context proving that while our nation was founded upon a document meant to limit government we now stand face-to-face with an unlimited government. I believed it was time to sound the alarm. I thought people were ready to admit the terrible truth; our government does little more than tip its hat to the Constitution while doing whatever it wants. The first step in solving any problem is admitting you have a problem. The second is recognizing what that problem is. My hope is that The Constitution Failed will help people recognize and identify the problem so that we the people can reach a solution.
As one who has been pounding this drum and singing this song for fifty years all I can do is wonder, will the drowning Lady Liberty finally see the life preserver as she goes down for the last time? Will she finally grasp the Constitution as the only thing that has ever guaranteed limited government, personal freedom and economic opportunity in America? Will she remember her past and save her future or will she sink beneath the waves of government regulation and drown in the red tape of an all-powerful central government?
I wrote The Constitution Failed to make a difference. I wrote it because I see my beloved country walking off a cliff into the abyss of socialism and I am compelled to throw out the life line.
If you want to read The Constitution Failed send me an email with your address and I will send you a complimentary copy. I want to see the re-birth of limited government. I want to see personal liberty and economic freedom continue to exist in this: the last best hope of mankind. And I’m ready to put my money where my heart is, limited government, personal liberty and economic freedom.
Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, and Religion for Southside Virginia Community College. He is the author of the History of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com © 2011 Robert R. Owens firstname.lastname@example.org Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook or Twitter @ Drrobertowens
I remember the images well, even though I was too young to understand their political significance. But they were visceral, those photos in the New York Times from Tehran in the midst of its revolutionary moment in late 1978 and early 1979. Not merely exuberance jumped from the page, but also anger; anger fuelled by an intensity of religious fervour that seemed so alien as to emanate from another planet to a “normal” pre-teen American boy being shown the newspaper by his father over breakfast.
Many commentators are comparing Egypt to Iran of 32 years ago, mostly to warn of the risks of the country descending into some sort of Islamist dictatorship that would tear up the peace treaty with Israel, engage in anti-American policies, and deprive women and minorities of their rights (as if they had so many rights under the Mubarak dictatorship).
I write this on February 2, the precise anniversary of Khomeini’s return to Tehran from exile. It’s clear that, while religion is a crucial foundation of Egyptian identity and Mubarak’s level of corruption and brutality could give the Shah a run for his money, the situations are radically different on the ground.
A most modern and insane revolt
The following description, I believe, sums up what Egypt faces today as well as, if not better, than most:
“It is not a revolution, not in the literal sense of the term, not a way of standing up and straightening things out. It is the insurrection of men with bare hands who want to lift the fearful weight, the weight of the entire world order that bears down on each of us – but more specifically on them, these … workers and peasants at the frontiers of empires. It is perhaps the first great insurrection against global systems, the form of revolt that is the most modern and the most insane.
One can understand the difficulties facing the politicians. They outline solutions, which are easier to find than people say … All of them are based on the elimination of the [president]. What is it that the people want? Do they really want nothing more? Everybody is quite aware that they want something completely different. This is why the politicians hesitate to offer them simply that, which is why the situation is at an impasse. Indeed, what place can be given, within the calculations of politics, to such a movement, to a movement through which blows the breath of a religion that speaks less of the hereafter than of the transfiguration of this world?”
The thing is, it was offered not by some astute commentator of the current moment, but rather by the legendary French philosopher Michel Foucault, after his return from Iran, where he witnessed firsthand the intensity of the revolution which, in late 1978, before Khomeini’s return, really did seem to herald the dawn of a new era.
Foucault was roundly criticised by many people after Khomeini hijacked the revolution for not seeing the writing on the wall. But the reality was that, in those heady days where the shackles of oppression were literally being shattered, the writing was not on the wall. Foucault understood that it was precisely a form of “insanity” that was necessary to risk everything for freedom, not just against one’s government, but against the global system that has nuzzled him in its bosom for so long.
What was clear, however, was that the powers that most supported the Shah, including the US, dawdled on throwing their support behind the masses who were toppling him. While this is by no means the principal reason for Khomeini’s successful hijacking of the revolution, it certainly played an important role in the rise of a militantly anti-American government social force, with disastrous results.
While Obama’s rhetoric moved more quickly towards the Egyptian people than did President Carter’s towards Iranians three decades ago, his refusal to call for Mubarak’s immediate resignation raises suspicion that, in the end, the US would be satisfied if Mubarak was able to ride out the protests and engineer a “democratic” transition that left American interests largely intact.
The breath of religion
Foucault was also right to assign such a powerful role to religion in the burgeoning revolutionary moment – and he experienced what he called a “political spirituality”, But, of course, religion can be defined in so many ways. The protestant theologian Paul Tillich wonderfully described it as encompassing whatever was of “ultimate concern” to a person or people. And today, clearly, most every Egyptian has gotten religion from this perspective.
So many people, including Egypt’s leaders, have used the threat of a Muslim Brotherhood takeover to justify continued dictatorship, with Iran as the historical example to justify such arguments. But the comparison is plagued by historical differences. The Brotherhood has no leader of Khomeini’s stature and foreswore violence decades ago. Nor is there a culture of violent martyrdom ready to be actualised by legions of young men, as occurred with the Islamic Revolution. Rather than trying to take over the movement, which clearly would never have been accepted – even if its leaders wanted to seize the moment, the Brotherhood is very much playing catch up with the evolving situation and has so far worked within the rather ad hoc leadership of the protests.
But it is equally clear that religion is a crucial component of the unfolding dynamic. Indeed, perhaps the iconic photo of the revolution is one of throngs of people in Tahrir Square bowed in prayers, literally surrounding a group of tanks sent there to assert the government’s authority.
This is a radically different image of Islam than most people – in the Muslim world as much as in the West – are used to seeing: Islam taking on state violence through militant peaceful protest; peaceful jihad (although it is one that has occurred innumerable times around the Muslim world, just at a smaller scale and without the world’s press there to capture it).
Such imagery, and its significance, is a natural extension of the symbolism of Mohamed Bouazizi’s self-immolation, an act of jihad that profoundly challenges the extroverted violence of the jihadis and militants who for decades, and especially since 9/11, have dominated the public perception of Islam as a form of political spirituality.
Needless to say, the latest images – of civil war inside Tahrir Square – will immediately displace these other images. Moreover, if the violence continues and some Egyptian protesters lose their discipline and start engaging in their own premeditated violence against the regime and its many tentacles, there is little doubt their doing so will be offered as “proof” that the protests are both violent and organised by the Muslim Brotherhood or other “Islamists”.
A greater threat than al-Qa’eda
As this dynamic of nonviolent resistance against entrenched regime violence plays out, it is worth noting that so far, Osama bin Laden and his Egyptian deputy, Ayman Al-Zawahiri, have had little – if anything – of substance to say about the revolution in Egypt. What they’ve failed to ignite with an ideology of a return to a mythical and pure beginning – and a strategy of human bombs, IEDs, and planes turned into missiles – a disciplined, forward-thinking yet amorphous group of young activists and their more experienced comrades, “secular” and “religious” together (to the extent these terms are even relevant anymore), have succeeded in setting a fire with a universal discourse of freedom, democracy and human values – and a strategy of increasingly calibrated chaos aimed at uprooting one of the world’s longest serving dictators.
As one chant in Egypt put it succinctly, playing on the longstanding chants of Islamists that “Islam is the solution”, with protesters shouting: “Tunisia is the solution.”
For those who don’t understand why President Obama and his European allies are having such a hard time siding with Egypt’s forces of democracy, the reason is that the amalgam of social and political forces behind the revolutions in Tunisia, Egypt today – and who knows where tomorrow – actually constitute a far greater threat to the “global system” al-Qa’eda has pledged to destroy than the jihadis roaming the badlands of Afghanistan, Pakistan, or Yemen.
Mad as hell
Whether Islamist or secularist, any government of “of the people” will turn against the neoliberal economic policies that have enriched regional elites while forcing half or more of the population to live below the $2 per day poverty line. They will refuse to follow the US or Europe’s lead in the war on terror if it means the continued large scale presence of foreign troops on the region’s soil. They will no longer turn a blind eye, or even support, Israel’s occupation and siege across the Occupied Palestinian territories. They will most likely shirk from spending a huge percentage of their national income on bloated militaries and weapons systems that serve to enrich western defence companies and prop up autocratic governments, rather than bringing stability and peace to their countries – and the region as a whole.
They will seek, as China, India and other emerging powers have done, to move the centre of global economic gravity towards their region, whose educated and cheap work forces will further challenge the more expensive but equally stressed workforces of Europe and the United States.
In short, if the revolutions of 2011 succeed, they will force the creation of a very different regional and world system than the one that has dominated the global political economy for decades, especially since the fall of communism.
This system could bring the peace and relative equality that has so long been missing globally – but it will do so in good measure by further eroding the position of the United States and other “developed” or “mature” economies. If Obama, Sarkozy, Merkel and their colleagues don’t figure out a way to live with this scenario, while supporting the political and human rights of the peoples of the Middle East and North Africa, they will wind up with an adversary far more cunning and powerful than al-Qa’eda could ever hope to be: more than 300 million newly empowered Arabs who are mad as hell and are not going to take it any more.
Mark LeVine is a professor of history at UC Irvine and senior visiting researcher at the Centre for Middle Eastern Studies at Lund University in Sweden. His most recent books are Heavy Metal Islam (Random House) and Impossible Peace: Israel/Palestine Since 1989 (Zed Books).
Rep. Steve King, a leader of House Republicans seeking the repeal of Obamacare, tells Newsmax that the healthcare reform law constitutes “a theft of the liberty of the American people” and repeal is an ultimate certainty.
The Iowa Republican also declares that Obamacare was the “core issue” that ended Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats’ control of the House, predicts that the Senate will go along with the House and vote for repeal, and says if President Obama does not sign a repeal bill then Republicans will defund healthcare reform until Americans elect a president in 2012 who will support repeal.
Ahead of Wednesday’s anticipated vote in the House on Obamacare repeal, Rep. King is presenting hundreds of thousands petitions from Americans demanding the repeal. In an exclusive interview with Newsmax.TV, King was asked what message he is hoping to send.
“I want to make sure that members of Congress on the Hill here and across the country understand how deeply and how broadly Americans have rejected Obamacare,” says King, who introduced repeal legislation in March.
“It was the core issue that turned the majority around in the House of Representatives and caused Nancy Pelosi to have to hand the gavel to John Boehner. We want to carry on the momentum on this issue and send a message to those who might be on the fence. This is the beginning of the repeal effort. It’s not the end by any means.”
Referring to a new poll showing that strong opposition to Obamacare has fallen to its lowest level in more than a year, King explains: “I see different polls with different results. When you break it down, I’m still very confident that the American people reject Obamacare.
“One of the things is, should we require employers to provide certain benefits, and sometimes the answer is as high as 59 percent. But it’s job-destroying, and if you ask the question, if you knew your employer was going to have to lay off so many people or not open up a certain number of jobs, would you still want to impose this mandate on your employer, I think a lot of Americans would change their mind. I think we’ve already won the debate.”
King dismisses assertions that repeal of Obamacare would add $230 billion to the federal deficit over 10 years.
“It was a rigged score from the beginning,” he says.
“They calculated 10 years of tax revenue but only six years of expenditures. So if that’s the basis of their calculation I’ll say it’s not relevant.
“And when it comes to something that is unconstitutional, that is a theft of the liberty of the American people, then [there is no] price tag we can put on it. It’s too valuable. Our liberty is priceless, and we cannot be the country that we shall become if we’re going to become the ever-expanded dependency class living in a nanny state. And that’s what Obamacare does to us.”
Asked what kind of support the repeal effort can expect from Democrats in the House, King responds: “There would be a lot more votes [against Obamacare] from Democrats if many of those who lost the election had a do-over. A lot of them lost because of their support for Nancy Pelosi and Obamacare.
“I think there will be 15 no votes from Democrats, and I’m hopeful that number will grow as the debate continues.”
King outlined the defunding approach Republicans will take if the Senate does not support repeal and Obama doesn’t sign the repeal legislation.
“It’s been part of my strategy from the beginning when I introduced this repeal legislation. It was predicated on Republicans winning a majority in the House, which we did, and now we need to shut off any funding that could be used to implement or enforce Obamacare. Every appropriations bill [must] include the language that none of these funds shall be used to implement or enforce Obamacare.
“We can do that all through 2011 and 2012, until we elect a president who will sign the repeal of Obamacare.
“That puts pressure on the Senate as well. I think the repeal that goes to the Senate tomorrow, if all goes well, if there can be a vote forced in the Senate, I think the repeal of Obamacare will pass. So there are several components of this. Defunding is the most useful tool. But we will get to repeal one day.”
King also says he opposes a “piecemeal approach” that would save certain elements of Obamacare in order to gain Democratic support.
“There is a risk to the piecemeal approach. The bills that come out that want to carve one piece out of Obamacare, and another piece and another piece, if you go down that path it lets a little steam out of the pressure cooker and the opposition to it will diminish. So I say we have to pull it all out by the roots, every bit of it.
“The defunding component of it is difficult, but it brings about a confrontation with the president, and the president will have to decide whether his pet policy, his signature healthcare bill, is more important to him than the function of the United States government. That will be a presidential decision, not a congressional decision.”
UNDER THE SOCIALIST PROMISE TO CONTROL THE POPULATION THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION STARTS WITH THE CYBER SECURITY
It’s “the absolute perfect spot in the U.S. government” to centralize efforts toward creating an “identity ecosystem” for the Internet, White House Cybersecurity Coordinator Howard Schmidt said.that news, first reported by CNET, effectively pushes the department to the forefront of the issue, beating out other potential candidates, including the National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security. The move also is likely to please privacy and civil-liberties groups that have raised concerns in the past over the dual roles of police and intelligence agencies.
The announcement came at an event today at the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research, where U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke and Schmidt spoke.
The Obama administration is currently drafting what it’s calling the National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace, which Locke said will be released by the president in the next few months. (An early version was publicly released last summer.)
“We are not talking about a national ID card,” Locke said at the Stanford event. “We are not talking about a government-controlled system. What we are talking about is enhancing online security and privacy, and reducing and perhaps even eliminating the need to memorize a dozen passwords, through creation and use of more trusted digital identities.”
The Commerce Department will be setting up a national program office to work on this project, Locke said.
Details about the “trusted identity” project are remarkably scarce. Last year’s announcement referenced a possible forthcoming smart card or digital certificate that would prove that online users are who they say they are. These digital IDs would be offered to consumers by online vendors for financial transactions.
Schmidt stressed today that anonymity and pseudonymity will remain possible on the Internet. “I don’t have to get a credential, if I don’t want to,” he said. There’s no chance that “a centralized database will emerge,” and “we need the private sector to lead the implementation of this,” he said.
Jim Dempsey of the Center for Democracy and Technology, who spoke later at the event, said any Internet ID must be created by the private sector–and also voluntary and competitive.
“The government cannot create that identity infrastructure,” Dempsey said. “If it tried to, it wouldn’t be trusted.”
Inter-agency rivalries to claim authority over cybersecurity have existed ever since many responsibilities were centralized in the Department of Homeland Security as part of its creation nine years ago. Three years ago, proposals were circulating in Washington to transfer authority to the secretive NSA, which is part of the U.S. Defense Department.
In March 2009, Rod Beckström, director of Homeland Security’s National Cybersecurity Center, resigned through a letter that gave a rare public glimpse into the competition for budgetary dollars and cybersecurity authority. Beckstrom said at the time that the NSA “effectively controls DHS cyberefforts through detailees, technology insertions,” and has proposed moving some functions to the agency’s Fort Meade, Md., headquarters.
One of the NSA’s missions is, of course, information assurance. But its normally lustrous star in the political firmament has dimmed a bit due to Wikileaks-related revelations.
Bradley Manning, the U.S. Army private who is accused of liberating hundreds of thousands of confidential government documents from military networks and sending them to Wikileaks, apparently joked about the NSA’s incompetence in an online chat last spring.
“I even asked the NSA guy if he could find any suspicious activity coming out of local networks,” Manning reportedly said in a chat transcript provided by ex-hacker Adrian Lamo. “He shrugged and said, ‘It’s not a priority.