Saturday, May 9, 2009

Back Seat In Hell

For years I have heard the lament that Democrats know what to do. They wake up and say how can I raise taxes today? How can I make government bigger? Damn the facts full speed ahead. Republicans lament because they feel that they are so much smarter and have to know the facts before they act and therefore have to be more careful in what they suggest. It is the ignorant public that doesn’t understand. Plus they don’t want to make a fool out of themselves by sticking their neck out.

But Why?

What has our carefulness gotten us? We are in the minority, we have accomplished very little and what little we did we let the Dems confiscate it. The only thing we have to be careful about now is what seat in the back of the bus we are allowed to sit in.

In all their haste and disregard of the facts the Dems have won majorities to the point they control all branches of government. While they may lose every intellectual argument with the lofty Republicans they have won everything else.

Our rallying cry has turned into one that says when the country falls apart, when the bus the country is on runs into the bridge, because we so astutely decided to sit in the back of the bus, we will survive and take control back.

Boy, that’s the ticket alright. No more lamenting about the Dems springing out of bed knowing what to do. We get to sleep in, never mind them. We’ll win in the end. Just keep writing those checks to those who got us here.

So set your alarm clocks all you faithful and undaunted Republicans for half past Armageddon; for it is surely upon us, and we might as well sleep through that too if we can find a comfortable back seat in hell.

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Word Smiths

Word Smiths

“Never forget there was only one freedom on which this nation was founded; that was freedom from government.” -Barry Goldwater ...

I was reminded of that quote as I was reading Thomas Sowell’s latest article (“Empathy” Versus Law) in


It was the not so subtle language in Mr. Sowell’s article trying to remind us of the reason behind the limiting of governmental power by the Framers of and written into Our Constitution; the use of language is what sparked the brain to do the work of remembering.

To illustrate that, look at the use of the word “damage” in the following quote from his article.

In the American system of government, presidential term limits restrict how long any given resident of the White House can damage this country directly. But that does not limit how long, or how much, the people he appoints to the Supreme Court can continue to damage this country, for decades after the president who appointed them is long gone.

Think about it. Dems were as happy to see Bush term limited out as Repubs were to see Clinton term limited out.

As usual Thomas Sowell hits the nail on the head about how much damage unchecked power can lead to. That however is not why I’m writing.

Yet another quote. The use of the word “damage” by Mr. Sowell, dredged out of my head the use of the word “degenerated” used by Peter F. Drucker in 1909. It can be found in his book “The Effective Executive” by Harper Collins, still in print. Newt Gingrich in talking to young Republican Activists said to read that book, said he had, over and over and still does, I did. Below is the quote.

“Unless a decision has “degenerated into work” it is not a decision; it is at best a good intention” Peter F Drucker, “The Effective Executive” pp114 Harper Collins paperback edition, 2006.

The only thing the two words, “damage” and “degenerated” have in common is that they both are negative and both are used to highlight or enhance a positive message. The use of the negative by both authors conjured up images in my mind far different than if the words were left out.

Kind of like a left jab setting you up for the Right hook.

Drucker’s Right hook was to make the point that if you want something done you have to get off your butt and do something. Sowell’s Right hook came in the form of an admonition; we reap what we sow. Ie If we don’t pay attention we deserve what we get. Ie We need to get off our butt and do something.

Both authors are word smiths of renown. They both however, through their writing show they understand that the ultimate power derived from the written word is measured in stirring the readers into creative action. Degenerating thoughts into action; to help put in place methods to stop the damage caused by the real world to our fantasies.

This Ying and Yang between reality and fantasy is what makes us as a people work. Ying or Yang alone will lead us to ruin.

Both writers I believe, understand that without the good intentions, life as we know it will disappear, and the bitch is that we have to degenerate those intentions into work in order to survive. I would add that the work based on good intentions is what makes us human and not animal. I would also add that the good intentions are what make the work bearable and indeed sometimes very unlike work.

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

Monday, May 4, 2009

Helplessness: The Root Of Victory.

Helplessness: The Root Of Victory.

It never ceases to amaze me what is available out in the real world. There is so much that I miss.

Being an Internet junkie I think I have my fingers on everything. I admit to being naieve as hell. Not doing my homework.

Who is Aaron Schock? I probably heard his name as he has made the headlines recently but today was the first time I actually listened. I was in my normal browsing of the news when I read a Newsmax article that said you should look at the videos YAF has put together.

That’s it - no link, nothing. In my state of Helplessness I thought, how dare they not link me to it. Well, after the frustration and anger wore off some I did go back a little later and google it.

Then while waiting on a link, I sat back and remembered that 25 years ago I would have had to go to the library to find out anything at all about the group and - well videos from them - forget about it. Maybe if I had $50 and was willing to wait a month and YAF provided the service, I might have been able to order them. The internet has given a new definition to helplessness at least in my case.

Out of helplessness came frustration then anger then this time action taken, to fight my helplessness. This time it was easy. I mean how hard is it to google?

YAF stands for Young America’s Foundation. They are a national group of young Republicans with a conservative bent. The two videos that I watched were obviously from their convention, which I know nothing about (YET). Be forewarned these two videos or talks are long; about an hour each. There are others too. The first was a speech by Jona Goldberg, and this guy I know. His speech was good and at points funny etc. but it lacked the how to, or the hands on, in the trenches type of information I was after. Goldberg’s conservative credentials are impeccable and his speech was great but it was too academic for my mindset at the time. I listened to about 40 min.

The next one I was captivated by. The speaker was a 20 something speaker who is currently a member of the US Congress, he is an unabashed conservative.
His name is Representative Aaron Schock. He is the textbook example of the old fashioned concept of; if you want something done you have to do something.

I will not recap the hour long speech here, and I will not force you to google it lol. I will put the link below at the bottom of the article. I will ask of you however to set aside an hour to watch it. Be warned again, this is more like a how to workshop and inspirational talk, about how to; not an indepth philosophical piece or a cynical Anne Coulter type of thing. I also ask you to imagine yourself in his position as he worked his way up the ladder then ask yourself what would you have done. I frankly wasn't happy with my answer. But I NEVER forget, today is a new day. We need to ask ourselves what can I do today.

The story Aaron Schock tells is a journey of success after success bourne out of helplessness, frustration and anger; success after success after sucess.

At 19 no one on the schoolboard would listen to him. They were in their 50s, 60s, and 70s. He felt helpless, frustrated then angry. He asked the clerk what the qualifications were to run for school board. She told him he had to be 18 and collect 200 signatures. He turned his anger into work, and collected 230 some signatures. Two weeks before the election enough of his signatures were turned down because people had used ditto marks which the board defined as two straight lines thus meaning nothing thus invalidating the signatures. By the way, the members of the board that made that judgement were those he wanted to run against.

Again the same process of helplessness frustration anger then action; but he was learning; he probably only cried over one beer(oops milkshake-21 to drink you know), he was getting quicker at the process. He mounted and won a write in campaign. He won. He was later voted vice chair then chair by the same people that tried to bar him from running.

His comment was to remind the audience which was mostly College students that as in high school if you just show up, do your homework and ask intelligent questions; most of the battle is won. Aaron said he learned the issues, fought to do the hard work and was rewarded by those that didn’t.

Later the same type of process happened in his state house district. My ears perked up as I found out he ran in the 92 district in Illinois. I live in the 92nd in Michigan. But I digress. He decided to try to run in the district. When running the idea of running past the state Party officials they told him he was too young, that there had never ever been a Republican that won the 92nd district. The district was 60% Democrat, 25% African American, of the 40, 000 voters 20,000 were on food stamps and therefore they couldn’t afford to help him unless he could show by poll numbers that he had a chance to win. BTW same in my 92nd, but I digress.

Click -- there went that (by now) almost automatic process. Helplessness, frustration, anger then hard work. I mean knocking on tons of doors, speaking at union halls and everywhere else any right minded Republican knew better than to enter. Did he pander to the left? Did he become Democrat lite? NO This kid translated Core Conservative principles into the issues and solutions for those issuse; into the language the people in his district could relate to. He won by a 200 something vote margin. A really close thing. Does Aaron think volunteers stuffing envelopes, knocking on doors help?

One principle I know he would believe in is that America and our freedom still allows one person to rise if they ae wiling to show up, do their homework and ask intelligent questions. His main thing hanging over all that he suggests is that honesty and integrity in doing all of the above in mandatory.

Aaron Schock then won re-election by 59% of the vote because he proved his honesty and integrity by following through on his promises of showing up, doing his homework and asking intelligent questions of his constituents.

Whenever we get bogged down in helplessness we have a long list of Americans that show us that if we are breathing we are not helpless. From Washington at Valley Forge to Aaron Schock. That chain need not be broken. Time for all of us old foggies to pick up the books and do OUR homework.

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

No I didn’t forget, here is the link.