TrishAndHalli.com

Where we bring you fresh opinions on Idaho government, observations on life in general, great recipes, and an opportunity to comment on them all!

RSS Feeds, Etc.

Get New Posts Via Email! Enter your e-mail address and hit the 'Subscribe' button. Your address will never be sold or spammed.

About

Profile TrishAndHalli.com
Where we bring you fresh opinions on Idaho government, great recipes, and an opportunity to comment on them!.

Archives

Categories

Pages

Blogroll

Conservative News

General Interest

Idaho Falls Links

Idaho Politics

Left-Leaning Idaho

Libertarian Links

Pro-life Organizations


Jerry Sproul, CPA
ThoughtfulConsideration.com

Please take a moment to visit our sponsors!

Richard Larsen: Martin Luther King and His Far-reaching Impact

January 21st, 2016 by Halli

By Richard Larsen

Some people take umbrage at the fact that Martin Luther King, Jr. has a holiday dedicated to his remembrance, while none of our founders, or even presidents, do. I am not among them. In many ways, MLK epitomizes the founding principles the nation was based on, for they, along with his theological convictions, comprised his core belief system.

As we celebrate the 87th anniversary of his birth, acknowledgement of his contributions to civil rights and peaceful demonstration for just causes is just a portion of what the man represented. His insights on freedom, work, selflessness, and morality apply equally to all Americans, regardless of political orientation, race, or creed.

Perhaps that was the key to his enduring legacy – not just that he advanced civil rights, but that he taught and expounded precepts that transcended the great social divide of his time. Perhaps there is as much for us to learn from those teachings in transcending and bridging the divisions of our time.

To him, everything revolved around freedom. “I say to you that our goal is freedom, and I believe we are going to get there because however much she strays away from it, the goal of America is freedom. Abused and scorned though we may be as a people, our destiny is tied up in the destiny of America.” This may seem ostensibly a self-evident truth, but the concept is increasingly foreign to too many of us as we look continually to government for solutions, at the expense of individual liberty to choose and to act.

He also stated, “Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed.” When we realize that much of what’s done in the name of government is oppressive to freedom, it’s increasingly evident that as an electorate we must needs rise up in opposition to freedom-inhibiting laws and regulations, and demand redress.

“Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. And so we must straighten our backs and work for our freedom,” he declared on another occasion. Individual and universal freedom was everything to him, without regard to ethnicity or other contradistinction. He advocated freedom, as opposed to government programs that diminish the freedom to build, achieve, to be rewarded for those achievements, and to succeed.

He often talked about how critical it was for all Americans to have a job. To him, a good job was ennobling, and built character. “All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken with painstaking excellence.” A working society was a free society, for without work, one becomes the ward of the state and loses their individual freedom to become and do.

He was so critical of those whose entire focus was on themselves and their own self-interests. And he made no distinction between the personal and the private; the political and the individual. Said he, “An individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of his individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity.” And as if to underscore this notion, “Every man must decide whether he will walk in the light of creative altruism or in the darkness of destructive selfishness.” Clearly those who engage in identity politics for their personal aggrandizement are not looking at the greater good for society and America.

He always emphasized doing, and acting on principles. It wasn’t enough to echo the refrains of freedom, one had to work for them. And at times he seemed to echo the sentiments of Edmund Burke, the English philosopher who said “All that is needed for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing,” King’s version was, “History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people.” How can one claim ownership of great precepts, and not be willing to act on them?
“When the architects of our republic wrote the magnificent words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir. This note was a promise that all men, yes black men as well as white men, would be guaranteed the inalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” Clearly, to King, all lives matter!

The Reverend was a highly principled man, driven by truths and fundamental values. He referred often to those values. “If we are to go forward, we must go back and rediscover those precious values – that all reality hinges on moral foundations and that all reality has spiritual control.” Some of those values were the very foundational principles upon which the nation was founded, that he found lacking in their application to all American equally.

He was not a perfect man. None are. Yet he advanced a commitment to “moral foundations” and “spiritual control” which he saw as critical for society as a whole, and can only be accomplished by each of us dong our part.

I think he would concur with General Douglas MacArthur, a great student of history, who declared, “History fails to record a single precedent in which nations subject to moral decay have not passed into political and economic decline. There has been either a spiritual awakening to overcome the moral lapse, or a progressive deterioration leading to ultimate national disaster.”

Although an icon of the civil rights movement, Martin Luther King was not single-dimensional. He called upon all citizens, regardless of ethnicity, religious convictions, or socio-economic status, to do their part for the benefit of society and the country. It’s wholly fitting to have a holiday dedicated to his memory and teachings. And the nation would be better off if more effort were expended in adherence to his precepts.

If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to the full-feed RSS.

Posted in Constitutional Issues, Family Matters, Guest Posts, Pocatello Issues, Politics in General, Presidential Politics | No Comments »

Richard Larsen: Independent Voters, America Needs YOU!

January 15th, 2016 by Halli

By Richard Larsen

The final word to escape the lips of William Wallace of “Braveheart” fame was “Freedom!” The scene still today sends chills down my spine, and arouses a profound sense of gratitude for the freedoms we have in America, even with their gradual erosion that we’ve witnessed over the past 240 years. Even as William Wallace was willing to give his all for freedom, so likewise Republicans in America are generally committed to the ideological foundation of our republic: life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. We implore independent voters to side with the cause of liberty and individual freedom.

With that said, the Republican Party is no more monolithic than the Democrat Party is. There are elements within both parties that are more or less conservative or progressive. Those of us who are more conservative align ourselves ideologically with the classical liberals of the 18th century who founded this nation, again based on the Lockean Creed and embedded in our founding documents. These are the principles that have made America unique, and it is our conviction that this legacy must be perpetuated for the republic and American exceptionalism to survive.

As classical liberals, we acknowledge that the more government grows and encroaches into our individual lives, the more our individual freedom and liberty is diminished. It was this principle that Benjamin Franklin referred to when he stated, “Those who would sacrifice freedom for security deserve neither.”

While we acknowledge the need for some security as a safety net for some in society, we believe that freedom is ennobling and the ability to achieve or fail develops character and is good for all, individually as well as collectively as a society. Consequently, we resist expansion of government power and incursion into, and control over, our lives.

We believe that in a representative republic we have a government of the people, by the people, and for the people, and that our elected officials are beholden to the will of the people to act in our collective best interests, rather than catering or pandering to select groups or special interests. Thomas Jefferson is often quoted saying, “When governments fear the people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny.” While the attribution may be in question, the logic isn’t.

We maintain that the Constitution purposefully delineates the limited powers of government in order to maximize individual freedom and liberty. Consequently, we are supportive of the constitutional functions of government, and logical and progressive levels of taxation in order to support them. We support logical, protective regulation, but reject centralized planning and government intrusion into every aspect of our lives at the expense of our liberty.

We are supportive of rational levels of taxation to pay for the services we demand of government, but acknowledge the factual consequences of diminished return the higher taxes are. And as the former Council of Economic Advisors Chairman Christina Romer has proven, for every $1 collected in taxes, there is a diminution of GDP (Gross Domestic Production) output of $3. Taxes, then, should be kept as low as possible to maximize growth of the economy and provide us individually with maximum financial freedom.

We want the economy to grow, not just for the improvement of our station in life, but because we need more than 120,000 new jobs created each month just to keep pace with population expansion. And more than that is needed to start picking up the gap of those who are underemployed, who, based on the Department of Labor’s U6 report, currently stands at 10%.

This kind of job expansion can only occur with a healthy, thriving private sector, that rather than being demonized by Washington and inflicted with senseless regulation and micromanagement by government bureaucrats, is fostered and facilitated by prudent policy and regulation. Ronald Reagan said, “The best welfare program is a job,” to which we would qualify further, a “good job.”

We adhere to fundamental fiscal principles, that the government should be beholden to the same financial restraints that we as individuals are, and that we shouldn’t spend what we don’t have. We maintain that it’s illogical to presume that spending two times more than you receive in income or revenue is sustainable and that believe that unrestrained spending threatens to bankrupt the nation and raze the republic.
We believe in free market economies, not only because they work, but because they afford the most freedom to hard-working Americans. Government can serve a legitimate role in protection of citizens and their property, but should not have power to micromanage our health care, our energy use, or our commercial activities.

Thomas Jefferson succinctly stated, “A wise and frugal government, which shall leave men free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned – this is the sum of good government.” We hold that to be a self-evident truth.

Right now we have a federal government that is neither wise nor frugal, but to that end we strive for a reversal at the national level, and an improvement in state and local government as well. To effect such change, it is imperative that independents consider not just the personalities of presidential and congressional candidates, but the broad principles at the base of their ideologies.

If the republic is to survive as intended, it will be because a majority of the 39% of independent voters decide that it’s worth saving, and vote accordingly. We would invite a thorough examination of the issues and the candidates, and a resolve to make logical, cogent decisions on how to vote that will facilitate a return to common sense governance, and a resurgence of commitment to the principles upon which the nation was founded. America’s founding principles made her great; she can be so again!

If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to the full-feed RSS.

Posted in Constitutional Issues, Guest Posts, Pocatello Issues, Politics in General, Presidential Politics | No Comments »

Richard Larsen: Making the World a Little Bit Better in 2016

January 15th, 2016 by Halli

By Richard Larsen

In spite of all the challenges and vicissitudes we’re facing domestically and globally this year, and the daunting challenges facing the country and our culture, there is much good that oftentimes escapes our notice. Sometimes as we review the year, both societally as well as personally, it can be a matter of perspective, whether we deem the glass half full, rather than half empty.

Reviewing the significant events of the year, it’s difficult to find the good, through the predominance of the bad. Bad news definitely grabs the headlines and the airtime, so the good news is mostly eclipsed or underreported since they don’t garner the attention-grabbing attributes of the bad.

As any student of history can aver, bad things always happen. There are always some catastrophes happening somewhere, always some acts of nature reminding us of our smallness compared to the powers of mother nature, and bad things happening to good people. And most of the time, there is little that can be done by us to prevent such events. But the weight of such pejoratives mustn’t weigh us down so much that we cannot see the good.

As a matter of fact, there is little any of us can do for issues and events vexing much of the world. But there is always something that we can do in our own homes, in our own neighborhoods, and our own communities.

Throughout the year much good has been done by commoners like us, which reminds us of our shared humanity and membership in the family of man. Not grandiose acts of unbounded magnanimity, but the little acts of kindness, thoughtfulness, and sensitivity to others. After all, not all of us can be as munificent as the Australian woman who left a $4.3 million estate to a charity that serves the homeless in her community.
But we can all do little acts that go a long way, like the Ogden, Utah hair stylist who organized a free haircut day at the local homeless shelter. The tears of joy and appreciation from the beneficiaries brought a sense of accomplishment and gratitude to those who gave of their talents and time to their fellowman in need.

We can “pay it forward,” the beneficent principle of repaying kindness shown to you, by blessing the lives of others, who in turn pay that kindness forward to others. Lily Hardy Hammond, in her book, “In the Garden of Delight,” coined the phrase, and explained, “You don’t pay love back; you pay it forward.” Imagine the delight and joy shared recently by all those involved in a “pay it forward” act that resulted in over 250 McDonalds customers in Lakeland, Florida paying for the car behind them. It all started with one person!

Pictures of a professor at the University of Louisville babysitting the children of one of his students went viral in social media. The student had a babysitter scheduled so she could take her test, but when those plans fell through, she had to take her four and five year old children to take the test with her. The professor entertained and cared for them in the hallway until their mother was through taking the test.

Several local young single adult LDS wards every year pitch their shekels together to help disadvantaged families have a semblance of a Christmas for their children. For these young people, mostly students, the sacrifice is great as they have little to spare themselves, yet they relish their opportunity to share of what little they have, to bring joy to others.

Literally volumes could be written of the little acts of kindness and thoughtfulness rendered just in the past few days alone. And hopefully each of us have our own stories of selflessness to contribute.

And as great as the temporal concerns may be to some amongst us, perhaps the greatest gifts we share are those that have no pecuniary cost, for their value far exceeds monetary numeration. The first of these is kindness, and genuine sensitivity to the concerns and needs of others. It doesn’t cost a dime, and exhibits an alluring selflessness and depth of character.

The former president of the LDS Church, Gordon B. Hinckley made a superb observation when he said, “Generally speaking, the most miserable people I know are those who are obsessed with themselves; the happiest people I know are those who lose themselves in the service of others…By and large, I have come to see that if we complain about life, it is because we are thinking only of ourselves.”

Author Joyce Meyer has said, “If selfishness is the key to being miserable, then selflessness must be the key to being happy.” An altruistic attitude makes it extremely difficult to be egocentric and preoccupied with our own inadequacies. Look to the welfare of others, in love, rather than focusing on our own life challenges. There is no cost in temporal terms to being thoughtful, sensitive, supportive, kind, courteous, and loving to our fellowman.

Another thing that we can each do to make a difference in our homes and communities is an investment of time. Time to visit loved ones, time to serve those who are incapable of serving themselves, time given to worthy causes, time with our children and grandchildren, and time to reflect on what we can do to lessen the load of others.

None of us can do everything, but all of us can do something. If we all would do everything within our power to improve the lives of those within our respective spheres of influence, there is no limit to the good that could be done, the lives that could be touched, and the hearts that could be buoyed up.

The American theologian Reinhold Niebuhr wrote the poignant “Serenity Prayer” nearly a century ago. It includes the petition, “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”
Perhaps rather than obsessing over what we cannot change, we should focus more on what we can. And we can change our attitudes, our commitment to others through kindness, thoughtfulness, and love, as well as time dedicated in service. If we all did that, the impact could well be immeasurable, as we leave our little corner of mortality a little better than how we found it. Come to think of it, that sounds like a noble New Year’s resolution!

If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to the full-feed RSS.

Posted in Family Matters, Guest Posts, Pocatello Issues | No Comments »

Richard Larsen: ISIS, ISIL and Daesh – What’s in a Name?

January 15th, 2016 by Halli


By Richard Larsen

This week President Obama addressed the nation in a rare Oval Office speech. The intent was to assuage concerns that the government isn’t doing enough to protect us from radicalized jihadists, like the couple in San Bernardino last week. But the speech may have raised more questions and apprehensions than provided answers or assurances. And perhaps the largest is in the language used to describe the threat.

The speech made reference to ISIL sixteen times. This is itself significant. ISIL is one of the retired acronyms the organization that prefers to be referred to as the Islamic State has used. The original acronym they employed was ISIS, or the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria. ISIL, however, has much more broad regional significance, for it stands for Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.

The Levant includes some historically significant territory, including not just Syria, but the region referred to in Biblical times as Palestine. So ISIL includes the entire Fertile Crescent from the Persian Gulf through southern Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Israel, and northern Egypt. In other words, the entire region from the Taurus Mountains of Turkey in the North, the Mediterranean Sea on the west, the Tigris-Euphrates river system on the East.

Secretary of State uses a different term to identify the group. Since late last year Secretary John Kerry habitually has referred to them as Daesh. Perhaps just as incendiary as the president’s insistence on using the ISIL acronym, Daesh refers to the Arabic name of the group, ad-Dawlah al-Isl?miyah f? ‘l-?Ir?q wa-sh-Sh?m. The Arabic version implies that the Islamic State is a worldwide caliphate, with Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi as its caliph. As a caliphate, it claims “religious, political and military authority over all Muslims worldwide, and that the legality of all emirates, groups, states, and organizations becomes null by the expansion of the khil?fah’s [caliphate’s] authority and arrival of its troops to their areas,” according to Washington Post foreign affairs writer, Ishaan Tharoor.

The significance of the terms the administration chooses to employ in referencing the group cannot be overstated. With Secretary Kerry’s Daesh (or Da’ish) he may presume to be ideologically neutral, since it doesn’t have the name “Islamic” in it, (at least an English transliteration). He may also use the term in part due to his French allegiance. France’s Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius has said, “This is a terrorist group and not a state. I do not recommend using the term Islamic State because it blurs the lines between Islam, Muslims and Islamists. The Arabs call it ‘Daesh’ and I will be calling them the ‘Daesh cutthroats’.” Perhaps they’re both being either obtuse or naïve, thinking they’re avoiding “Islamic” with the Daesh designation. But use of this term grants the group universal pertinence as a global caliphate.

The President’s insistence on using ISIL could well betray his perpetual downplaying of the influence, scope, motives, and successes of the terrorist group. After the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq, the military vacuum in the country began to be filled by ISIS forces in Northern Iraq. The President called them “jayvee” terrorists at the time they initially encroached into Iraq. And even while repeatedly saying they were “contained,” they have expanded to include 20% of the 169,234 square mile country. To put that in context, California, the third largest state in the U.S., is 163,694 square miles, and the area of ISIS control in Iraq is equivalent to the size of the state of South Carolina.

Obama has been unrelenting in his denunciation of Israel, and unremitting in his criticism of its leadership. In the earliest days of his presidency, he made his now infamous “Cairo Speech,” where he referenced Israel’s “occupation” of Palestinian lands, and the “daily humiliation” and “intolerable” condition of the Palestinians. And it’s only gotten worse since then.

Several times over the past five years, Obama administration officials have leaked classified Israeli information regarding defensive measures and offensive plans related to Iran. The effect has been an unmistakable chilling of the relationship between Washington and Tel Aviv, as Washington’s objectives seem clearly at odds with the protection and preservation of the state of Israel.

Even the heralded Iran Nuclear deal was done over Israel’s objections, since it assures Iran will be nuclearized by year ten of the agreement, and Iran has vowed to “blow Israel off of the map.”

So is it coincidental that Obama uses the ISIL name intentionally to include the Levant, which includes Israel? Indubitably not. Even by his chosen appellation for the terrorist group, the President continues his denunciation, disavowal, and rejection of the state of Israel. And rather than graduating to the more geographically broad “Islamic State” name the group applies to itself, he has chosen to stick with their earlier iteration which conspicuously includes the land of Israel.

Not only does our president consistently understate our enemies, and fail to accurately identify them, but he has severe problems recognizing our primary ally in the region, and providing the support key allies should expect from one another. If we’re to ever succeed in vanquishing ISIS, it’s not going to be by alienating our allies and placing them increasingly at risk.

Words matter. And in foreign affairs, the symbolism employed by policy-makers through their word choice, are of immense significance, not just to our allies but to our enemies as well. Our enemies should not be emboldened, and our allies alienated by the language they use.

If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to the full-feed RSS.

Posted in Guest Posts, Pocatello Issues, Politics in General, Presidential Politics | No Comments »

Richard Larsen: Is Carbon Dioxide Really Our Greatest Threat?

December 15th, 2015 by Halli

By Richard Larsen

If we were aboard a sinking ship, and the captain boldly stated that to prevent submersion we must turn off the air conditioners, burn less oil, and start using squirrelly new-fangled light bulbs, it would be clear that the captain had truly lost his mind. President Obama’s fixation on climate change as the most pressing issue facing the nation whilst experiencing a global conflagration of Islamic extremist terrorism, should be seen no differently.

ISIS, contrary to the president’s assertion, is not “contained,” and is spreading throughout the Middle East, leaving a wake of beheadings, mass executions, and destruction. Terrorists sympathetic to jihad are striking globally, including 130 innocent victims slain in Paris two weeks ago, and now striking on our own soil in San Bernardino this week. Yet the president and his administration continue to appear impotent not only addressing the threats, but even acknowledging them for what they are.

Instead, in conjunction with the Paris Climate Conference this week, administration officials uttered these inanities and non-sequiturs: “Today, there is no greater threat to our planet than climate change.” “No challenge poses a greater threat to future generations than climate change.” “It is indeed one of the biggest threats facing our planet today.” “Climate change is the threat multiplier.” “If another country threatened to wipe out an American town, we’d do everything in our power to protect ourselves. Climate change poses the same threat right now.”

Seemingly doubling down on the idiocy, the president told CBS News, “A deal to cut carbon emissions would be an act of defiance against terror.” Terrorists around the globe, following such a statement by the leader of the free world, are either, a) quaking in their boots fearing the damage to their cause by reduced carbon emissions, or b) laughing hysterically. If one buys into the president’s illogic and biases, it’s the former. For all those not detached from reality, it’s the latter.

And unsurprisingly, the mainstream media parrots the lunacy. CNN reported, “The recent terror attacks are tragic. And many lives will never be the same because of them. They should not be minimized. But climate change is another form of terror and it’s one we’re wreaking on ourselves.” So after the estimated 350 billion tons of CO2 emitted for the confab in Paris, we’re apparently to assume that we’re safer from the threat of global jihad just because they conflated the two dissociated issues. And if we ascribe validity to the president’s premise, all 150 global leaders are now accomplices to global climatic terror by their carbon footprint to Paris.

We have addressed this issue ad nauseam in the past, how the “science” behind purported anthropogenic climate change (aka “global warming,” until the earth quit warming 17 years ago), is not “settled.” The issue is a political one, not a scientific one, as recently averred by a Nobel Prize-winning scientist who has been a supporter of Obama.

Dr. Ivar Giaever, a Norwegian-American physicist who won the Nobel Prize for physics, declared in July, “I would say that basically global warming is a non-problem.” After referencing Obama’s declaration that “no challenge poses a greater threat to future generations than climate change,” Giaever said it was a “ridiculous statement.” He went on to say, “I say this to Obama: Excuse me, Mr. President, but you’re wrong. Dead wrong,”
In 2009, Giaever was one of over 100 scientists who wrote a letter to the president that stated, “We the undersigned scientists, maintain that the case for alarm regarding climate change is grossly overstated.”

Giaever says that the theory behind fears about rising carbon dioxide levels created by man “is not backed by evidence.” He said, “Global warming really has become a new religion. Because you cannot discuss it. It’s not proper.”

Clearly the Nobel Laureate is correct. The political left is wholly sold on the notion that carbon dioxide, the gas we exhale and that plants feed on, causes climate change. And to attempt to reason with them based on the actual evidence and logic, rather than the hyperbolic talking points of those with vested interests, especially those receiving government grants for their confirmation bias, is utterly futile.

The ideological fascism exercised from the left on climate change disallows the possibility of diversity from their preconceived conclusions. Discussions, regardless of logic and data, inexorably devolve to casting aspersions and adolescent name-calling. One is a “flat-earther” if one fails to embrace the highly doctored, exaggerated, and pre-conceived notion of man-made climate change.

Yet interestingly, even among climate scientists, there is no “consensus,” and the “97% agree in man-made climate change” is bogus. The most recent polling of 6550 scientists working in climate related fields including climate physics, climate impact, and mitigation, was conducted by PBL Netherlands Environment Assessment Agency. They found that only 43% agree with the premise that human activity is causal to global warming, or climate change.

Obama’s attempt to conflate terrorism with climate change is entirely specious, and his preoccupation with faux man-made climate change is ideological, not scientific. There is no evidence that governmental intervention and regulation, however well intentioned, can alter climatic trends, for such an assumption is based upon an unsettled and unproven “scientific” premise.
When it comes to facing exogenous and valid threats to the nation, we truly need a reality-based commander in chief, not an ideology-based meteorologist in chief.

If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to the full-feed RSS.

Posted in Guest Posts, National Sovereignty, Pocatello Issues, Politics in General, Presidential Politics | No Comments »

Richard Larsen: The Collapse of Universities as Institutions of “Higher Learning”

December 15th, 2015 by Halli

By Richard Larsen

Students at several universities have been protesting over some legitimate, and even some illegitimate, grievances and “injustices” recently. In unsurprisingly duplicitous fashion, they have engaged in the same type of tactics they denounce: bullying, intimidation, and bigotry, in what should be the most open and diverse setting – institutions of higher learning.

At the University of Missouri, there was a report of a swastika of human excrement on a wall in a lavatory. Surprisingly, in this era of everyone having a cell phone that takes pictures, not a soul on a campus of 30,000 students was able to document it. Then apparently some inebriated student said some inappropriate things of a racial nature. He was suspended. So basically, a couple of incidents of bad behavior.

Primarily because of those incidents, protests broke out all over the campus, even leading a communications professor to request some muscle to prevent a student newspaper reporter from taking pictures. Isn’t that interesting, that a professor of communications, you know, that industry that is so dependent upon First Amendment rights, would attempt to suppress and stifle the First Amendment rights of others?

To the modern day witch hunters of Mizzou “racial insensitivity” is the hammer, and literally anything can be a nail, because it’s so completely subjective. Failure to display enough revulsion at perceived injustices is apparently enough to be classified as “racial insensitivity,” as the removal of the president and chancellor prove.

But because of the demonstrations, and the football team getting involved by threatening to not play BYU this weekend, the campus bullies forced their way past logic, to the very highest echelons of university governance. The university president and chancellor resigned. Even they refused to be the adults in the room. No wonder the students act the way they do!

There is at least one small glimmer of hope with regard to the Mizzou situation. Sci Martin, one of the nation’s top defensive ends in the upcoming recruiting class, has cut Missouri from the list of schools he was considering attending and playing football for. Martin leads the New Orleans area schools in quarterback sacks, says he wants “no part of what’s taking place” at Missouri. “Their campus is going out of control,” the athlete said earlier this week, and “I’m not going back in time with this type of madness.” There are, gratefully, some millennials who have not totally divorced reality!

The vice president of the Missouri Student Association was on MSNBC earlier this week expressing her disdain at “people using their First Amendment rights to create a hostile and unsafe learning environment.” She called for a “safe space for healing rather than experiencing a lot of hate.” This is so sad on so many levels! Not least of all, the notion to some that freedom of speech can be suspended to create a “safe zone” so hypersensitive adolescents don’t get their feelings hurt.

MSNBC host Thomas Roberts asked the student leader what she thought of one professor who complained that college campuses are becoming places of prohibition. She responded, “I personally am tired of hearing that first amendment rights protect students when they are creating a hostile and unsafe learning environment for myself and for other students here. I think that it’s important for us to create that distinction and create a space where we can all learn from one another and start to create a place of healing rather than a place where we are experiencing a lot of hate like we have in the past.” Are there really classes that teach this kind of inanity? No wonder so many of them are so cognitively dysfunctional.
It is truly unfortunate that some choose to use their freedom of speech to promote hate and ignorance. But someone’s supposed “right” to not be offended doesn’t trump the right to free speech! If we attempted to revoke freedom every time it was used to do something politically incorrect, we’d quickly run out of freedom.

Next stop, Yale University. The week before Halloween, some students complained to a professor and his wife, who also serve as residential advisors, that the university was being “heavy-handed” on what Halloween costumes should be avoided, for the sake of “racial sensitivity.” The couple drew from their scholarship and experience and wrote a thoughtful email inviting the community to consider whether it was appropriate to have “PC police for Halloween costumes,” from an intellectual perspective. One source described the email as the “model of relevant, thoughtful, civil engagement.”

For simply having raised the possibility that people should think about the issue rather than simply blindly following the PC dogma, the couple have become the targets of the most pernicious and vile attacks. An all-out public verbal flogging has ensued, to force them from their positions with the university. I guess we can finally relinquish the notion that the Ivy League proffers a superior education.

Wesleyan University in September cut half of the student newspaper funding from the student association because of complaints about a column critical of the “Black Lives Matter” movement. Bryan Stascavage, an Iraq War veteran, wrote the piece that was not critical of the movement’s mission, or even their motivation, but questioned their tactics, especially the “anti-cop” fringe elements of the movement.

As one source described the piece, it “contained neither name-calling nor racial stereotypes, the usual hallmarks of collegiate column calumny.” It was a thoughtful, deliberative column. But that didn’t prevent all hell from breaking loose, and Stascavage excoriated and denounced everywhere he went on campus. In a café on campus, one student screamed that he had, “stripped all agency away from her, made her feel like not a human anymore.” And just like at Mizzou, no adults showed up to render order from the vapid chaos because they are afraid to. And perhaps justifiably so, as standing up would likely cost them their jobs.

The irreverent, and almost always politically incorrect South Park, in one of their October episodes, mocked the current PC climate on American universities. In a song titled, “In My Safe Place,” reality-dimension-challenged college students sang quixotically about their “safe place” where they don’t ever have to hear, see, or be confronted with anything that may challenge their biases and predispositions. That is until the villain, identified as “Reality,” steps into their “safe place” and begins dismantling their ideological fantasy.

One professor in an interview this week said, “I’m a liberal, but my liberal students scare me to death!” Columnist Mona Charon said this week, “There was a much-beloved quote circulated among leftists, often attributed to Sinclair Lewis, that ‘when fascism comes to America it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross.’ In light of recent episodes of mob action on American campuses, the quote needs updating: When fascism comes to America it will be wrapped in ‘diversity’ and demanding ‘safe spaces.’”

Regrettably, it seems that most of higher education’s commitment to diversity is entirely misplaced. The culture at too many of these institutions sacrifices what should matter most, in favor of what matters least. After all, is there anything that matters less than what color one’s skin is? And conversely, is there anything that matters more in a university setting than ideas? Yet academe has nearly universally substituted those priorities. The pervasive commitment to diversity is all about skin tone, and diversity of ideas and perspectives is maligned, vilified, and proscribed anathema.
Rather than institutions of higher learning, it appears all too many schools are becoming institutions of lower learning. Instead of preparing the latest generation of students for reality, and to be productive members of society, they’ve become incubators for narcissism, egocentrism, confirmation bias, and a whole new breed of thin-skinned, coddled, entitled, and spoiled brats.

And this is all occurring in an era when they are accountable for the expenses of their “education.” Imagine how much worse they’d be if taxpayers paid all of it for them! There is much to fear for the future of civilization and our society given the devolvement of our “higher education” culture. Gratefully, our own Idaho State University has withstood this trend thus far.

If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to the full-feed RSS.

Posted in Guest Posts, Pocatello Issues, Politics in General, Taxes | No Comments »

November 14th, 2015 by Halli

By Richard Larsen

It’s hard to think of any other way to characterize the off-year elections results across the nation, than that the rejection of liberalism and progressivism continues unabated. Races across the country, and even some key social-issue elections, don’t portend well for those on the left of the political spectrum.

Perhaps the most significant race was for the governorship of Kentucky. Matt Bevin, a political outsider and Tea Party activist, was trounced just a year ago by 25 points in a primary defeat by the Senate Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell. A year later, he’s the governor elect of the state.

There are many takeaways from his success, but the most obvious is that his conservatism was across the board, from fiscal to social. While the Obama administration has been holding Kentucky up as an exemplary success story for Obamacare, Bevin ran against it, based on costs, cost of coverage, and declining healthcare provision under the ACA. He also ran on the social side of the issue, proposing to defund Planned Parenthood, the largest abortion provider in the nation.

And he embraced and supported the cause of Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis who refused to issue marriage licenses for same-sex marriages because of her religious convictions. And according to Davis, the governor elect even (gasp) prayed with her when she was incarcerated.

His first order of business is to make the Bluegrass State a right to work state. Diminishing union political clout and increasing voter focus on economic issues could have more broad ramifications even beyond Kentucky, and the southern states generally.

It’s difficult to say what the key factor was in Bevin’s victory. As recently as a day before the election, he was projected to lose by five points. Instead, he won by ten. But it’s hard to overstate the significance of a fiscal and social conservative winning the gubernatorial race in a seat that has only had one other Republican governor in the past 50 years. Oh, and his running mate, the Lt. Governor elect, Jenean Hampton, is now the first black elected to statewide office in the state’s history. And she’s also a Tea Party activist.

Elsewhere across the land, Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe, a close friend of the Clintons, went all-out to pick up at least one additional seat to give his party control of the state senate. He solicited PAC money from outside the state and by all accounts, outspent Republicans nearly 4 to 1, yet was unable to pick up even one seat. Interestingly, much of the outside money was advocating stricter gun control legislation. This may be indicative of the mood of the country toward restrictive 2nd Amendment efforts, which does not bode well for the left.

Houston had an Equal Rights Ordinance on their ballot that banned discrimination based on gender identity and sexual orientation. It had been passed by the Houston city council and had only been on the city ordinance books for three months, before voters overwhelmingly repealed it with Tuesday’s vote. Even the White House had weighed in on this local issue, but on the losing side of the argument.

In San Francisco, Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi was defeated. The sheriff received national attention when he steadfastly defended the city’s controversial “sanctuary city” policy of protecting illegal aliens, after illegal migrant Francisco Sanchez shot and killed a 32 year-old woman on the waterfront in July. But based solely on one logical vote, it’s entirely premature to claim voters in San Francisco may have actually found their marbles so long lost.

In Mississippi, Republican Governor Phil Bryant was easily reelected. The GOP also increased their majority in their House by nearly 10%, giving them nearly a super majority, defeating the House Minority Leader in the process. Voters in Ohio rejected liberalization of medical and recreational marijuana laws.

With but few exceptions, it was a banner election for liberty, free markets, economic growth, traditional social conventions and institutions, rule of law, and common sense governance. As boisterously as the mainstream media have been proclaiming the demise of the Tea Party, one can’t help but surmise, as did Mark Twain, that news of their death has been greatly exaggerated.

If anything, there seems to be a deepening and widening conviction that exceeds the traditional purview of the Tea Party, and is more fundamentally etched in the broader body politick. It’s gone mainstream. That conviction has been spawned, nurtured, and invigorated by none other than our community organizer in chief. He almost single-handedly has orchestrated the resurgence in the conservative ideals of American exceptionalism. Just as he’s been the most effective gun salesman over the past several years, he’s been the poster child of all that can go wrong when distinctly anti-American ideals are foisted upon the republic.

Since the 2010 midterms, the Democrat party has lost over 1,200 seats in government according to Real Clear Politics. That’s governorships, state senate, state house, town councils, county leadership, city councils, and mayors. Not only are they losing on economic issues, but they’re losing on the social issues. And it’s no surprise, for even though the left has been winning on so many fronts, the broader populace is not pleased. According to a Washington Post, ABC News poll in July, fully 63% of adult Americans are either strongly or somewhat uncomfortable with the direction of the country on social issues. We mustn’t forget who is driving that “uncomfortable” agenda.

With the socialist-left end of the political spectrum dutifully and ideologically represented by the Democrat party, the worst thing would be for Republicans to basically be the socialist-lite party. If the GOP wants to continue winning, it appears increasingly that the way for them to do so is by returning to the core values their party is based on, economically and socially.

If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to the full-feed RSS.

Posted in Guest Posts, Pocatello Issues, Politics in General, Presidential Politics, Taxes | No Comments »

Richard Larsen: Economic Freedom, Not Egalitarianism, Eradicates Poverty and Builds Wealth

November 9th, 2015 by Halli

by Richard Larsen

America was was intended to be a “shining city on a hill” of freedom, individual liberty, and unlimited opportunity. She was never intended to be a socialist state. Socialistic egalitarianism is strikingly antithetical to the American paradigm.

Founded in individual liberty, America has always been the one nation under heaven where equality of opportunity has taken precedence over equality of outcome. The whole concept of the “American Dream” is based on the individual freedom to become, to achieve, to build, sell, and succeed. This requires individual freedom (which is diminished proportionate to expanded governmental power), and a free market economy (not centralized planning, or government control over the means of production). Consequently, socialism in any of its iterations (communism, national socialism, fascism, and democratic-socialism) is philosophically, morally, and pragmatically, contrary to the principles upon which the republic was founded. Consequently, it is deductively anti-American.

To socialism, equality is paramount, rather than achievement and excellence. It ascribes value to workers not based upon their production and performance, but by the amount of time they put in. The net result is the rewarding of mediocrity rather than excellence.

By robbing Peter to pay Paul, the redistributive policies of socialism punish the producers, and rewards the non-producers. By so doing, not only is the heart and soul of a society inflicted with a loss of appetite for proactivity, creation, and production, but it becomes afflicted with an entitlement mentality of what the government, at the expense of the producers, can do for “me.” This makes individuals dependent on the state and the diminishing number of producers, since the government has nothing but what it takes from its citizens. This dependency can be for everything from food and energy to health care. In short, it strives for egalitarianism by debasing and defalcating from the successful, rather than providing means for elevating the disadvantaged.

As Danish author Mikkel Nissen explains, “Society becomes more and more deprived (in lack of ambition) and grows reliant upon the perfectly steady increase in entitlement benefits solidified through learned helplessness, successfully blinding society to the rapidly increasing collective oppression. This precise process of ambient socialism has taken place in the United States during the end of the twentieth century and continues to transpire ever more rapidly in the twenty-first century.”

Winston Churchill captured the essence of the failed and debilitating ideology; “Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy; its inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery.”

Logically then, it seems that those most ardent in their aspiration for egalitarianism seek not the elevation of a society, or a nation, but the demise thereof, by elevation of mediocrity over excellence; governmental thralldom over individual freedom; common misery over hope and the human spirit; micromanagement of the soul of man by the body politik, over personal responsibility and accountability.

If America ever devolves completely to the democratic-socialist level, it will constitute an abject rejection of the classical-liberal ideals upon which the republic was founded, placing foremost among those, life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. For nowhere in our founding documents is there even an utterance of socialist egalitarianism for the concept is diametrically opposed to the American dream and spirit.

The greatest evil inflicted upon mankind was done in the name of egalitarianism, and the “common good,” for the “working man,” and is responsible for hundreds of millions of deaths, all sacrificed at the altar of equality. Any form of socialism or collectivism is destructive to the human spirit which yearns to be free. This societal degradation advances until fully contaminated with the lower denominator of mediocrity. The purported elevation of the impoverished is promised, yet never fully delivered, by centralized control.

The freedom, and concomitant free markets, which made America great and so economically viable, has done more to elevate the disadvantaged than any iteration of socialism has even dreamed of. Free market capitalism is the heart and soul of individual freedom, for without financial freedom, most other forms have little pertinence.

The Economist recently reported that the global poverty rate has shrunk 50 percent in the past two decades: “The world has lately been making extraordinary progress in lifting people out of extreme poverty. Between 1990 and 2010, their number fell by half as a share of the total population in developing countries, from 43% to 21% — a reduction of almost 1 billion people.” And what is it that has elevated the quality of living throughout the globe? Nothing but the proliferation of free-market capitalism. “The biggest poverty-reduction measure of all is liberalizing markets to let poor people get richer. That means freeing trade between countries (Africa is still cruelly punished by tariffs) and within them (China’s real great leap forward occurred because it allowed private business to grow),” the Economist explains.

What worked in America, is now working across the globe. Our efforts to incorporate even diluted elements of the failed ideology are ineffectual, as evidenced by the fact that our poverty rate is virtually the same now as it was when LBJ’s “Great Society” social programs were launched 50 years ago.

The ideological cadre of progressives who embrace the pernicious doctrines so antithetical to America’s soul are advocating, in short, principles that are anathema and perhaps traitorous to the nation. We can only hope, pray, and work to ensure that the next eight years, at least, feature a leadership that is dedicated to America and our founding principles, to hopefully unravel so much of the damage inflicted in recent years, and return to those precepts that made America great.

If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to the full-feed RSS.

Posted in Constitutional Issues, Guest Posts, Pocatello Issues, Taxes | No Comments »

Richard Larsen: Democrat Debate Displayed Idiocy of the Democrat Party

October 31st, 2015 by Halli

by Richard Larsen

There are several self-evident truths about the Democrat Party that were revealed at their presidential debate earlier this past week. And as they relate to the character of the party, what it stands for, and what its adherents believe, none bode well for the future of the country.

Bernie Sanders, the self-avowed Democrat-Socialist Senator from Vermont, drew perhaps the most boisterous response to his comment, “Let me say something that may not be great politics. The American people are sick and tired of hearing about your d**n emails,” referring to Hillary Clinton’s FBI email investigation. Clearly, Sanders was echoing the sentiment of the Democrat faithful as evidenced by the raucous response in the debate hall, but such a sentiment underscores the elitism of the party: the “rule of law” is selectively applied, and has little or no relevance to the elite. And in Democrat circles, there are none more elite than the Clintons.

Those with high level security clearance are beholden to the regulations designed to protect national security, and knowingly mishandling classified information (or even sensitive information not classified “Top Secret”), bears criminal repercussions. The cases of former CIA directors General David Petraeus and John Deutch clearly prove the criminal liability. And according to Judicial Watch, the Obama administration has charged more government employees under the Espionage Act than any since the post-WWI era law was enacted.

MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough has aptly identified and clarified the problems with Hillary’s dismissal of email impropriety charges. “The State Department inspectors general said they found classified materials sent to and from Clinton’s Chappaqua home-baked server even though they only had access to a small sample of 40 e-mails. Of those, they found that four contained government secrets. That is information that if exposed could potentially harm national security. It’s information that is meant to be transferred and stored exclusively on secure computer networks with special safeguards.

“Again, of the self-selected e-mails that the Clinton camp chose to release, one in 10 of those e-mails seems to have held classified information. Put in perspective, Hillary Clinton turned in over 30,000 e-mails she said were work-related. She destroyed tens of thousands of e-mails, wiped clean her home-baked server and possibly destroyed copies of countless classified documents improperly stored and sent from the United States’ top diplomat. The extent of the cover-up, if there ever was one, will not be known because that evidence which could either clear or convict her is destroyed by the politician who is now at the center of this national security debate,” Scarborough detailed.

If General Petraeus’ informational indiscretions and national security protection had been as egregious as Hillary’s, he would be serving time and not escape with merely a $100,000 fine. And even if the emails were not classified as “Top Secret,” what does it say about the judgment, or lack thereof, of one who aspires to be our Commander in Chief? Bad judgment, poor decisions, disregard for rules intended to safeguard the country, and the Democrat Party applauds her, claiming they’re sick of hearing about it. Contrary to what the New York Times averred after the debate, this was not the “adults in the room,” for adults take their oaths, and national security, seriously.

Former Deputy Assistant Attorney General Kenneth Bergquist indicates that just based on the information that has been made public with regard to Hillary’s emails, the former Secretary of State could be indicted for breaking 8 separate laws, and multiple counts on each. They include 18 U.S. Code § 793 – Gathering, transmitting or losing defense information; 18 U.S. Code § 798 – Disclosure of classified information; U.S. Code § 1924 – Unauthorized removal and retention of classified documents or material; 18 U.S. Code § 2071(b) — Concealment, removal, or mutilation generally; 18 U.S. Code § 1505 – Obstruction of proceedings before departments, agencies, and committees; and 18 U.S. Code § 1519 — Destruction, alteration, or falsification of records in federal investigations

We must remember, in spite of the accusations of this being strictly political, that the FBI, State Department Inspector General, and Dept. of Justice are conducting the investigation. None of this would have come to light without the congressional hearings that uncovered the improprieties.

Also disturbing at the debate was Hillary’s perpetual reference to her gender uniqueness, as if that’s a substantive reason to garner electoral support. She repeatedly reminded viewers, at least seven times, that she was a woman. I wasn’t aware there was any question about that. But is that a reason to vote for someone? Identity politics is as specious and vacuous an appeal for votes as any in the book!

Ditto for class envy politics echoed by all the candidates, but most obstreperously articulated by Sanders. “Middle class in this country is collapsing. We have 27 million people living in poverty. We have massive wealth and income inequality. Our trade policies have cost us millions of decent jobs. The American people want to know whether we’re going to have a democracy or an oligarchy as a result of Citizens United.”

Blaming the wealthy, rather than the laws and presidential actions that have decimated the middle class over the past seven years, is casuistic populism, and displays abject ignorance to the facts about the role government is now playing to vitiate economic growth. But it’s just so much easier to blame the wealthy and, in pandering populist fashion, promise to punish them to the benefit of the rest.

And finally, whatever happened to liberals’ adulation of diversity? The debate was mostly a harmonious echo chamber of confirmation bias, where each tried to “out-progressive” the other. They mostly agree on everything, except perhaps the NRA. And even there, blaming the NRA for the Second Amendment is equivalent to blaming Citizen’s United for the First Amendment.

What the New York Times thought was, “The Grown-ups” taking the stage, was more like the JV team. When identity politics pandering, class-envy populism, lack of understanding of the adult issues, and “vote for me because I’m a woman” are the main course, anyone of substance would have come away hungry.

If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to the full-feed RSS.

Posted in Constitutional Issues, Guest Posts, Pocatello Issues, Presidential Politics | No Comments »

Richard Larsen: Do We Really Want to Model the U.S. after Denmark?

October 31st, 2015 by Halli

by Richard Larsen

At the Democrat presidential debate two weeks ago, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders said we “should look to countries like Denmark…and learn from what they have accomplished for their working people.” The good senator should either rephrase his statement, or look more closely at the data. Democratic-socialism may work in some places in Europe, but was never intended, nor can it work, in the United States of America.

Another of Sanders’ erroneous statements regarding Denmark was when he claimed that Denmark’s economic model “provides extraordinary security and opportunity.” It does provide security, but little opportunity, economic or otherwise.

Democratic socialism is a political ideology which juxtaposes a democratic political system, (popular elections), with a socialist economic system. As such, it involves a combination of political democracy (usually multi-party democracy) with “social ownership of the means of production.”
Consequently, it can be somewhat characterized as a less tyrannical and totalitarian form of socialism, since the masses are voting for the cadre that will separate them from the fruits of their labors. And while it may not abolish private property ownership, as its more draconian sibling, communism does, it taxes income, and inflates prices sufficiently, that private property ownership is severely limited.

The sheer economies of scale make a comparison between the Scandinavian country and the U.S. impracticable. Denmark, with a landmass of 16,562 square miles, is roughly the size of Maryland, and with a population of 5.6 million, has about 1.5% of the U.S. population. Compound that with America’s propensity toward a kakistocracy, as evidenced by the last two presidential election cycles, and democratic-socialism would likely destroy the economy, and the republic.

Danish author, Mikkel Clair Nissen, has published his own response to Americans who think Denmark’s democratic-socialism is so appealing. “I am a school teacher from Denmark making about $61,000 a year. We get free education. You don’t have to pay for the doctor, the hospital, and students even get paid to study. It all sounds so great…right? However, I forgot to mention that nothing is ever free. The lowest personal income tax in Denmark is minimum 40 percent. Also, we pay a sales tax of 25 percent, and on top of sales tax the government applies further (generally hidden) duties and fees, applied to almost everything, making it really hard for lower class people to get by, causing them to be deeply dependent on government handouts,” she says.

When Senator Sanders refers to “working people,” he likely is referring to the middle class, since that’s the most productive and economically viable demographic. Just as most of the fiscal initiatives of the past seven years have most adversely affected the American middle class, European democratic-socialism virtually plunders theirs. The middle-class in Denmark is taxed at a 60% rate, and that’s just the income tax rate. Yet to pay that rate, all one has to make is $55,000 per year. That means those who, by American standards, are earning a respectable middle-class income of $55k per year, only keep $22,000 of their earnings. That’s a relatively paltry $1,833 per month.

Nissen continues, “A gallon of gas is about 10 dollars. Tax on a car is 180 percent, which brings a car valued a bit over $20,000 dollars in the United States (e.g. Honda Accord) up to an astounding $50,000 dollars in Denmark.” No wonder 65% of the travel in the country is by mass transit and bicycle. And not surprisingly, cost of energy is extremely expensive, as most electricity is produced by “green” sources. The cost per kilowatt-hour of electricity is $.42, compared with an average of $.12 in the United States.

Nissen further explains, because of “excessive taxation, Danes also have the highest private debt in the world. Only few will ever own a car or a house here; banks generally do – hypocritically, the very same banks that the collectivists despise. Anyone who makes over $80,000 annually pays a personal tax of 68 percent. This means that almost all people with higher earnings have either found ways to evade taxes, or have left the country, often bringing their companies with them, making employment scarcely low.”

According to Eurostat, the European Union’s official data reporting service, real unemployment is double what the official figures indicate. By their calculations, Denmark’s real unemployment rate is 14%.

And Nissen provides more insights. “Denmark’s suicide rate has averaged 20.8 per 100,000 during the last five decades, with its highest level of 32. The American suicide rate averaged only 11.1 during the last five decades, and has never exceeded 12.7. Danes are deeply deprived, driven by severe narcissism, and so more than 11 percent of adult Danes – the supposed happiest people in the world – are on antidepressants. Well, of course, Danes are happy; they are medicated to be!”

If Danes are so happy to be economically socialized, why do they take their own lives at three times the American rate, and their anti-depressant dependency exceed America’s by 40%? Could it be that the cost of freedom is much greater than we assume?

Nissen concludes his missive, “Everyone wants the American dream. In Denmark’s neo-communism, no one will ever own or accomplish anything.”
America was founded on classical-liberal ideals of maximum freedom to facilitate virtually unlimited potential. Benjamin Franklin said, “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor safety.” And that’s precisely what socialism, in all its iterations, does. It sacrifices individual freedom at the altar of security and egalitarianism

One of the most critical concepts of liberty upon which America was founded, is economic freedom. Indeed, Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton championed economic freedom as the foundation for all other liberties. True liberty mandates that private property, and the ability to reap and freely expend the fruits of our labors, is sacrosanct. Nobel economic laureate Milton Friedman declared that property rights are “the most basic of human rights and an essential foundation for other human rights.” Without economic freedom, all else is severely vitiated.

There might be some things America can learn from the Danish economic model, but only if we deny what America was founded and intended to be — the land of the free, dedicated to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to the full-feed RSS.

Posted in Family Matters, Guest Posts, National Sovereignty, Pocatello Issues, Presidential Politics, Property Rights, Taxes | No Comments »

« Previous Entries

Copyright © 2oo6 by TrishAndHalli.com Powered by Wordpress          
Ported by ThemePorter - template by Design4 | Sponsored by Cheap Web Hosting