Remembering Mr. Lincoln

Lincoln10581Friday, was, of course, Abe Lincoln’s birthday. Interestingly, when he was elected President he was a one-term Congressman, not Senator; perhaps other things matter more than experience, at least sometimes. If you remember, he made his name nationally, in 1858, when he ran against Stephen A. Douglas, for the Senate. He lost. It was the last election he would lose. And the reason is here, and would change the world.

When he was nominated for the Senate that summer, he accepted with perhaps the most incendiary speech since Patrick Henry cried, “Give me liberty, or give me death”. This is The House Divided speech. And it is as true now, as it was then, and it is still magnificent, a speech for the ages.

But these two men, two of the best orators in American history, did some debating, and what they said there, remains as relevant as it was in the summer of 1858.

Scott Johnson reminds us:

According to Douglas, Lincoln’s assertion that the nation could not exist “half slave and half free” was inconsistent with the “diversity” in domestic institutions that was “the great safeguard of our liberties.” Then as now, “diversity” was a shibboleth hiding an evil institution that could not be defended on its own terms.

Douglas responded to Lincoln’s condemnation of the Supreme Court’s Dred Scott decision — a condemnation that was the centerpiece of Lincoln’s convention speech. “I am free to say to you,” Douglas said, “that in my opinion this government of ours is founded on the white basis. It was made by the white man, for the benefit of the white man, to be administered by white men, in such manner as they should determine.”

Lincoln invited Douglas’s audience to return the next evening for his reply to Douglas’s speech. Lincoln’s speech of July 10 concludes with an explanation of the meaning of the American creed with matchless eloquence and insight, in words that remain as relevant now as then.

We are now a mighty nation, we are thirty—or about thirty millions of people, and we own and inhabit about one-fifteenth part of the dry land of the whole earth. We run our memory back over the pages of history for about eighty-two years and we discover that we were then a very small people in point of numbers, vastly inferior to what we are now, with a vastly less extent of country,—with vastly less of everything we deem desirable among men,—we look upon the change as exceedingly advantageous to us and to our posterity, and we fix upon something that happened away back, as in some way or other being connected with this rise of prosperity. We find a race of men living in that day whom we claim as our fathers and grandfathers; they were iron men, they fought for the principle that they were contending for; and we understood that by what they then did it has followed that the degree of prosperity that we now enjoy has come to us. We hold this annual celebration to remind ourselves of all the good done in this process of time of how it was done and who did it, and how we are historically connected with it; and we go from these [Independence Day] meetings in better humor with ourselves—we feel more attached the one to the other, and more firmly bound to the country we inhabit. In every way we are better men in the age, and race, and country in which we live for these celebrations.

But after we have done all this we have not yet reached the whole. There is something else connected with it. We have besides these men—descended by blood from our ancestors—among us perhaps half our people who are not descendants at all of these men, they are men who have come from Europe—German, Irish, French and Scandinavian—men that have come from Europe themselves, or whose ancestors have come hither and settled here, finding themselves our equals in all things. If they look back through this history to trace their connection with those days by blood, they find they have none, they cannot carry themselves back into that glorious epoch and make themselves feel that they are part of us, but when they look through that old Declaration of Independence they find that those old men say that “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal,” and then they feel that that moral sentiment taught in that day evidences their relation to those men, that it is the father of all moral principle in them, and that they have a right to claim it as though they were blood of the blood, and flesh of the flesh of the men who wrote that Declaration [loud and long continued applause], and so they are. That is the electric cord in that Declaration that links the hearts of patriotic and liberty-loving men together, that will link those patriotic hearts as long as the love of freedom exists in the minds of men throughout the world. [Applause.]

Now, sirs, for the purpose of squaring things with this idea of “don’t care if slavery is voted up or voted down” [Douglas’s “popular sovereignty” position on the extension of slavery to the territories], for sustaining the Dred Scott decision [A voice—“Hit him again”], for holding that the Declaration of Independence did not mean anything at all, we have Judge Douglas giving his exposition of what the Declaration of Independence means, and we have him saying that the people of America are equal to the people of England. According to his construction, you Germans are not connected with it. Now I ask you in all soberness, if all these things, if indulged in, if ratified, if confirmed and endorsed, if taught to our children, and repeated to them, do not tend to rub out the sentiment of liberty in the country, and to transform this Government into a government of some other form. Those arguments that are made, that the inferior race are to be treated with as much allowance as they are capable of enjoying; that as much is to be done for them as their condition will allow. What are these arguments? They are the arguments that kings have made for enslaving the people in all ages of the world. You will find that all the arguments in favor of king-craft were of this class; they always bestrode the necks of the people, not that they wanted to do it, but because the people were better off for being ridden.

That is their argument, and this argument of the Judge [Douglas] is the same old serpent that says you work and I eat, you toil and I will enjoy the fruits of it. Turn in whatever way you will—whether it come from the mouth of a King, an excuse for enslaving the people of his country, or from the mouth of men of one race as a reason for enslaving the men of another race, it is all the same old serpent, and I hold if that course of argumentation that is made for the purpose of convincing the public mind that we should not care about this, should be granted, it does not stop with the negro. I should like to know if taking this old Declaration of Independence, which declares that all men are equal upon principle and making exceptions to it where will it stop. If one man says it does not mean a negro, why not another say it does not mean some other man? If that declaration is not the truth, let us get the Statute book, in which we find it and tear it out! Who is so bold as to do it! [Voices—“me” “no one,” &c.] If it is not true let us tear it out! [cries of “no, no,”] let us stick to it then [cheers], let us stand firmly by it then. [Applause.]

Thank you, Mr. Lincoln: “Let us stick to it then, let us stand firmly by it then

via Remembering Mr. Lincoln | Power Line.

Amen.

Revolutionary Times?

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The wins for The Donald and the Bern in NH seems to have confirmed sections of the media in its view that something is happening in our politics, and over my side of the Pond I have seen parallels drawn with Jeremy Corbyn, Syriza and the Front Nationale – it is, it is being said, the anti-Establishment candidates who are attracting the young and the discontented. In the UK we have a system of what are called by elections, so, when a member of parliament dies or resigns between general elections, there is an election in that seat; usually the ‘insurgent’ or ‘protest’ vote does well, sometimes even wins, but, at the next general election the seat reverts to the old loyalty. People, it seems, are willing to pile in with a protest vote – ‘kick the rascals out’ – when there is nothing much at risk, but when there is, they revert to safety first; after all, someone needs to run the economy.

Quite what happens when it seems that the ‘safety first’ parties cannot run the economy is an interesting question which we, most of us, hope does not have to asked soon, though the odds on that are shortening. It is for that reason that the pundits are predicting, at least some of them, that it will be Hillary versus Marco Rubio; but I wonder if that is just the comfort zone for the MSM? From this side, it seems amazing that the Hillary and her emails thing is still grinding on – it kind of reinforces the view that normal rules don’t apply to her, and that the most powerful machine in American politics is going to grind out a victory. The problem with that may be that while we know Hillary wants to be POTUS so bad it hurts, and she longs to be the first woman to hold that office, no one seems ot have any idea what else she wants to do with it. It may be that she will be like Gordon Brown, the man who succeeded Tony Blair as Prime Minister here. He wanted to be PM, he knew it was his destiny – but when he got it it turned out he had no idea what to do with it – and in a way the 2008 Crash gave his time in office a purpose it would otherwise have lacked. Had he never achieved his ambition, everyone would have said he was the ‘best PM we never had’ – his tragedy was he got what he wanted; the same may be true of Hillary. I have to say, as a woman, I wish she and some of the older women who support her, would stop sounding as though it were some kind of betrayal of womankind not to support her; it isn’t like Bill’s record in that department is a good one.

Your politics, naturally, attracts attention here, which ours does not with you, but here there is an interesting situation developing. Alone in Europe, David Cameron became a Conservative leader to actually increase his vote at a general election – and he did it firmly from the centre ground. He now finds himself in a position where he has had to deliver on his promise to hold a referendum on the European Union and to renegotiate on Britain’s terms of membership. No one really believes he has got real changes, but the betting is that he will win the referendum on a ‘stay in’ platform, and then reshape his Cabinet before retiring in a couple of years time.  The media here are generally disparaging. He’s not very exciting, he seems to lack fire, and he’s so Establishment it is not true. His success belies their narrative of us living in ‘revolutionary times. The Left here are furious with him, but they have shifted Labour so far to the Left that it is hard to see how they can win the next election, whenever it comes.

The people are happy to be revolutionary when there is nothing much at stake – at least here, but less so when there is. I have no idea how that would play out in your case were it to be the case – but it could be interesting to speculate.

How to Win the White House and Save the World

Cant-fix-stupid-cropI periodically reread (or watch) some of Reagan’s speeches, apparently Ace does as well. And he’s noticed something that has vaguely bugged me, as well:

I’ve been reading some of Reagan’s old speeches to confirm something to myself. At the Trump-less debate, Rand Paul finished his closing statement by saying something like, “And I’m the only Republican who’ll balance the budget.”

This provoked a reaction from me, because I thought — would Reagan have just made the promise that he would balance the budget? In a closing statement, in which he could chose his own words as he liked?

Looking back at Reagan’s speeches, I don’t see him just promising some government action. I see him promising a government action and then immediately telling you how this will directly and tangibly benefit you.

This has something to do with Trump’s appeal, he does it crudely, but “we’re gonna get rich” is surely a benefit. But other things we talk about have them too. Reducing regulatory burden? More jobs and/or better pay because business’ aren’t spending mega bucks doing government paperwork, and trying to comply with nonsensical ideas imposed by government lawyers. And so on, ad infinitum.

This ties into what economists call ‘opportunity cost’. Every dollar spent complying with Washington (or Lincoln, for that matter) could have been spent in other ways, buying a car, expanding operations, saving for college, whatever. It’s true for us all, business and labor, rich and poor, whatever. What the government takes, we can’t spend for what we want or need.

Ace again:

So often I hear candidates lapse into Conserva-Speak where they trouble themselves over points of policy, shorthanding years or decades of conservative ideological infighting on the issue.

But they do not end their statement with:

* This will make you freer.

* This will make you safer.

* This will make you richer.

* This will make you happier.

* This will make a better world for your children.

There is a principle called the 80/20 principle. You surely know it: 20% of the work produces 80% of the gains. But the next 80% of the work only produces the last 20% of the gains.

Trump is being taken seriously because he’s not forgetting the most important thing: to tell people

via How to Win the White House and Save the World: Don’t Talk <i>of</i> Reagan. Talk <i>Like</i> Reagan..

YUP!! Talk like Reagan, it a good part of why he won, twice.

A friend of mine published a so-called rant yesterday. I don’t think it is, really. To my mind, it is simple common sense, from those of us out here on the fruited plain, expressed quite clearly. Here’s part of what Cultural Limits had to say:

Two states into the 2016 presidential primary season, and the Republican “establishment” has yet to finish above third place.  Not that two states is all that much in the larger scheme of things (especially when the states in question are Iowa and New Hampshire, important only because they butted in at the front of the line), but out of the gate, the people who supposedly know what they are doing are losing, and losing badly.

Why?  Well, as so many of us have observed since 2009 when the electorate decided exercise their first amendment right to peacefully assemble, and over a million of them did so in Washington on September 12 of that year (a day that scared the $#@! out of all political operatives, according to one insider at the time), the American people are…how do we put this…PISSED OFF.  No one in Washington seems to be listening to the great unwashed masses that foot the bill for the government and everything else that seems to get stuck in the swamp that is the District of Columbia.  At that point over six years ago, the issue was mostly taxes, and the specter of ObamaCare, that has been every bit of the nightmare predicted.  Now…now the issues are so numerous that the people of the country fear for survival: the culture, the country, and, well, we the people ourselves.

We out on the fruited plain see an emasculated “establishment” that cannot or will not put our best interests ahead of their own and those of their donors.

[…] These are real, actual results which are the consequences of real, actual resentment stemming from real, actual betrayal.

The establishment may not see it that way, but the people do.  And that is what matters this time around.  2016 is the most important election in at least one hundred years in the United States.  The “dumbed-down” people are proving that they aren’t as much the blind followers as the “establishment” would like to believe.  The people aren’t falling for the narrative.  We are making up our own minds.  And we want America to be great again.

Now the question is who actually can facilitate that happening….

via: RANT: GOP Establishment FINALLY Notices How Ticked Off The Voters Are

Yes, and that is what We the (sovereign) People of these United States are going to decide this year, not the establishment (whoever they are). Us!

 

Beyoncé at the Super Bowl? I prefer the anti-racists of Millwall

thHeh, who are the racists here?

[…]It’s not just Millwall, mind — football has done extraordinarily well in accustoming the white folks to divest themselves of racial prejudice. It is still the focus of anti-racist odium from the middle-class liberal left, of course, which despises what it sees as a lowbrow white working-class leisure pursuit. And yet there were more black players on Millwall’s books in 1975 than there were black journalists on the Guardian’s staff. A greater proportion of black footballers then and now than black academics, black lawyers, black MPs, black educationalists, black social workers — name your middle-class profession and the answer will be the same. And black Britons thrived in the same trades as those working-class supporters on the terraces — as electricians, plumbers, labourers. […]

And the story is much the same in the USA. This week the hugely irritating singer Beyoncé performed at half time during the Super Bowl and, in a display of outstandingly self-obsessed virtue-signalling, devoted her routine to Black Power. Her dancers referenced both Malcolm X and the Black Panthers. Malcolm was, for almost all of his adult life, an uncompromising racist who believed in complete segregation of the races and that white people were devils who would soon be obliterated. He recanted on these loathsome views only a year or so before he was murdered by a former fellow traveller from the unspeakably vile Nation of Islam, which thought he had got too big for his boots. The Black Panthers, meanwhile, were a bedraggled and asinine collection of gun-toting Maoist halfwits.

If Beyoncé had wished to champion the cause of racial equality and proper integration, she would have been better off paying homage to the players on the field and those redneck supporters in the stands. At the same time that Malcolm X was advocating separation for blacks from white America, on account of its irrevocably racist agenda, the National Football League was showing the way: almost one third of American football players in the 1960s were black. Today that figure is more than two thirds.

Where is the real racism within our societies, do you think? Among the ordinary white working-class folk — or a little higher up the social ladder? Trevor Lee and many others could give you an answer.

via Beyoncé at the Super Bowl? I prefer the anti-racists of Millwall.

It’s the same the whole world over

Women In Combat: Making A Virtue Of Weakness

If you follow the military much you have like seen this video.

Looks impressive (and brave), doesn’t it? She worked through it to manage to complete the march. Good for her!

Thing is, this is a 12 mile, that has to be completed within 3 hours, and the load is 36 pounds. As opposed to the normal 60-120 lbs that our guys carry into battle, for that exactly what this is, an approach march. I also note that no ammunition was carried, no night vision devices, none of the things that make an that make an army patrol lethal, or even survivable.

And yet she barely finished. What kind of shape is she going to be in to fight the upcoming battle? More to the point, how many of her squadmates are going to be killed trying to protect her?

Men and women are simply different, and all the feminists in the world cannot make that untrue. We as a nation ignore it at our peril. In the linked article, Streiff makes the point with 800 meter results, to wit:

Compared with the top 49 California high school boys:

He notes as follows:

Why the top 49 times? Because the top 10 women 800m times, ever, would place between 16th and 48th place among high school boys times in California.

If you want to do a more apples to apples comparison, the top Women’s 800m time would be over seven seconds slower than the 6,258th best Men’s time.

Men and women are not physical equals. And we are playing a very dangerous and very lethal game right now by fantasizing otherwise. Testing by the US Marine Corps that pitted all-male squads against co-ed squads found that all-male squads significantly outperformed the co-ed squads even though the test had been structured to aid the co-ed squad… this is something out enemies probably won’t do:

All-male ground combat units in the Marines were faster, more lethal and less injured than units with mixed genders, according to a Marine Corps study that looked at integrating women into all service jobs.

“All male squads, teams and crews demonstrated higher performance levels on 69 percent of tasks evaluated (93 of 134) as compared to gender-integrated squads, teams and crews,” according a summary of the report released Thursday.

via Women In Combat: Making A Virtue Of Weakness Gets People Killed | RedState.

His last line sums up this tomfoolery as well as I’ve ever heard.

You are seeing a cruel farce being perpetrated upon this young woman, upon her unit, and upon her nation.

You are seeing murder being planned.

Lawless America

I was watching the dramatisation of the Nuremberg Tribunal (the one with Alec Baldwin) last night, and it made me think.

First, with the immigration status, and such, how far is Germany again from the maelstrom that existed under Weimar? And what will happen this time? We know history doesn’t repeat, exactly, but it does rhyme. Something to think about, for us all.

But my stronger feeling was that America may be circling that same drain, for all the reasons that Bob Livingston writes of here. It doesn’t mean that it has to happen, or that it has to happen this way, but it means that we have a serious problem with this, and we’d best be thinking about a solution.

America is a nation of thousands if not millions of laws, yet it is a lawless nation.

A lawless nation is no nation at all. It is merely a Third-world backwater where those in power who lord over the people and abuse them for their own gain, for the gain of the bureaucrat class, and for the benefit of the banksters and the crony corporations who fund the charade elections every two or four years.

So those thousands or millions of laws written “for our benefit” – at least that’s what we’re told each time another edict from the District of Criminals becomes “law” – are employed against us while those in power are given a pass on them. Beyond that, those in power make the laws arbitrary by enforcing them or not enforcing them on a whim.

Last week, Brandon Judd of the National Border Patrol Council told  a House Judiciary Committee that the Barack Obama Department of Homeland Security had instructed U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents to release illegal immigrants and no longer order them to appear at deportation hearings. The stand down order includes a requirement that the whereabouts of illegals not be tracked, the Washington Examiner reported.

Judd said the new policy was implemented because only about 40 percent of illegal aliens apprehended and given a Notice to Appear (NTA) before an immigration judge actually show up. The process became so farcical that Border Patrol agents began calling them Notices to Disappear.

So in order to avoid the embarrassment of admitting that 60 percent of all illegals apprehended fail to appear before an immigration judge as required, the DHS and the Attorneys from the Department of Just(us) decided that any illegals apprehended who had no felony convictions and who claim to have been in the U.S. since January 2014 are to be released without an NTA.

Judd further testified:

Not only do we release these individuals that by law are subject to removal proceedings, we do it without any means of tracking their whereabouts. Agents believe this exploitable policy was set in place because DHS was embarrassed at the sheer number of those who choose not to follow the law by showing up for their court appearances. In essence, we pull these persons out of the shadows and into the light just to release them right back to those same shadows from whence they came.

Let me give you an example from my sector in Montana. Several months ago we arrested an illegal alien with a felony domestic violence arrest from another state. He was released because his trial had not occurred and therefore had not been convicted. Mind you he had not been acquitted either but we had to let him go all the same.

Under the law he should have been set up for removal proceedings, but under the policy he was let go. And he was let go even though he first proved that he cared so little about our laws that he entered the United States illegally, and once here, he proved further disdain by getting arrested for a serious violent act against another. What did we teach him and everyone else he undoubtedly told about his experience? We taught him our laws mean very little, but policies mean everything.

via Lawless America – Personal Liberty®.

Answers? I’m not sure I have any, but until we define the problems that doesn’t matter, so let’s get to defining!

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