Saturday, May 30, 2009

Too Little Too Late

(Governor Sarah Palin visiting the Kodiak Launch Complex in Alaska)

Well, Defense Secretary Gibbs came out today warning North Korea not to try and attack anybody.

'Bout time.

Unfortunately, you're only about two years too late.

President Obama is also out there trying to convince the UN Security Council to impose sanctions, etc.....

Overall, not a bad strategy, but there's two points of contention that I have with this whole thing:

1. Hello! North Korea already has the weapons!

Any sanctions imposed now will be seen as aggression by the North Koreans and they will retaliate...with firepower! The time to implement sanctions was a while back, when the weapons weren't finished yet. Duh.

Sanctions may be a good idea, but it's really too late for that. Imposing sanctions at this point is the equivalent of declaring war.

The only alternative is to sit back and wait for North Korea to attack somebody, at which point there will be war anyway.

Conclusion: There will be war.

2. While you're working on diplomacy, you might also work on defense.

Look man, nobody wants war. If we can negotiate our way out of this, that's great. But it's foolish to rely on that at this point. What was it your mother always said? Oh, yeah, "Hope for the best and prepare for the worst."

While we're talking, we better be beefing up, especially in Alaska. Governor Palin has again called on Obama to restore money that he cut from facilities in Alaska that aid in missile defense.

Since missiles from North Korea headed to America will most likely be pointed toward Alaska (they're in range), the Governor is understandably concerned.

She sent out another statement today, the latest in a long line of requests urging Obama to reinstate funding:
“The United Nations sanctions have failed to stop North Korea’s development of nuclear weapons, and the Obama Administration cannot afford to be playing catch-up to an irrational dictator like Kim Jong-Il,” said Governor Palin. “Missile Defense Agency funding must be fully restored in the federal budget to guarantee our protective measures remain the best in the world. Fort Greely plays a crucial role in the nation’s security.”

The entire press release can be found here.

Now, I'm just a stupid lowly ordinary citizen, but here's an idea: how about we make sure we can defend ourselves if diplomacy fails and a WMD is headed straight for our northern neighbor? Is that too much to ask?

I'm just glad that we've got somebody up in the wilds of the North who gets it and who will do whatever it takes to protect her state, and this country.

Governor Palin on Energy Funds

I hate to toot my own horn (but I will, just this once).

Governor Sarah Palin wrote an opinion piece to an Alaskan newspaper this week explaining her decision to reject the energy stimulus money. Here's a piece of it:

"I've served as a city councilman and city mayor/manager. I've participated firsthand in the mandated building code debate. Anyone serving in local office knows strong deference to local communities leads to the best policies. That policy holds true with building codes.

"My community went through a battle over building codes when our booming city desired more growth opportunities to allow job creation. The last thing we needed was a bureaucrat from Washington, D.C., telling us what the best policy was to adopt."

And, here's where I get to toot my horn. I wrote a piece awhile back about how I think being a small town mayor was actually an advantage to someone seeking higher office. One of my points, was this:

"She's had to actually enforce policy that other politicians only write about. Take the current energy code debate, for instance. Sarah Palin comes from an office where she would have had to play a role in implementing those policies. She understands the kind of time and money it takes to support that kind of red tape. She's been on the receiving end of alot of the rules, therefore she understands the implications of those rules when they are written. This gives her a unique perspective. "

The whole thing can be found here.

And as a sidenote, for those in Alaska who claim that the Gov doesn't care about your energy needs in the state, Palin has this to say:

"We have hundreds of millions of dollars already budgeted for conservation, weatherization and renewable energy development. My administration will remain vigilant for Alaskans and oppose mandates or pressure to conform from Washington, D.C."

So there.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

A New Old Word for Liberal

I'm so comforted. I just, feel so safe knowing that our President is relying on the advice of the UN Security Council. Ahh, we're in good hands now....

I swear, behind every liberal is a kid who got his feelings hurt on the playground and never got over it.

What kind of mamby pamby dealings is Obama doing with the North Koreans and the Iranians? "We'll give you a stern look." Ooooh, Kim is really scared now. And what is with his world tour apologizing to everybody? Does he think that this will elevate us in the world's eyes? More like the opposite.

But to a liberal, mushy gushy feelings are all that matter. The fact that in less than two hundred days America has surrendered her place in the world for no reason at all, no that doesn't matter. What matters is whether or not everybody thinks we're cool.

Give me a break.

Yo, Obama: This isn't high school! We don't have to be just like everybody else. We don't have to try to "fit in." We play a role in the world. Now, if Europe thinks we're too dorky for their little elite club, who cares? If you need the approval of others to survive, you have a sad life.

If you want to go about foreign policy as though America is trying to get into some clique, maybe the words of some wise older people would fit in well at this juncture: "If all your friends jumped off a cliff, would you jump too?"

The whole, "well, everybody else is doing it," argument is for junior highers with no self-esteem. Maybe that's what it is. Maybe for all of Obama's apparent arrogance, on the inside he's actually extremely insecure.

I don't know, but I've figured one thing out: the new old word for liberal. This word doesn't really apply to the economic or social policy of the modern day liberal, but it goes quite nicely with the foreign policy side of things. Drum roll please......


That's right, I said Tory. And not the contemporary British version, the old American British sympathizer version.

Here's where I got the word. I was reading Thomas Paine the other day, and I came across his remarks on Tories, and I thought, "Wow, it's like he's describing the modern-day liberal." Hence, I shall from this day forward call a foreign-policy-deficient liberal, a Tory. Here's some of Paine's passages:

"And what is a Tory? Good God! what is he? I should not be afraid to go with a hundred Whigs against a thousand Tories, were they to attempt to get into arms. Every Tory is a coward; for servile, slavish, self-interested fear is the foundation of Toryism; and a man under such influence, though he may be cruel, never can be brave....
"Your conduct is an invitation to the enemy, yet not one in a thousand of you has heart enough to join him....

"I once felt all that kind of anger, which a man ought to feel, against the mean principles that are held by the Tories: a noted one,who kept a tavern at Amboy, was standing at his door, with as pretty a child in his hand, about eight or nine years old, as I ever saw, and after speaking his mind as freely as he thought was prudent, finished with this unfatherly expression, "Well! give me peace in my day." Not a man lives on the continent but fully believes that a separation must some time or other finally take place, and a generous parent should have said, "If there must be trouble, let it be in my day, that my child may have peace;" and this single reflection, well applied, is sufficient to awaken every man to duty....

"The heart that feels not now is dead; the blood of his children will curse his cowardice, who shrinks back at a time when a little might have saved the whole, and made them happy....

"He that would sell his birthright for a little salt, is as worthless as he who sold it for pottage without salt; and he that would part with it for a gay coat, or a plain coat, ought for ever to be a slave in buff. What are salt, sugar and finery, to the inestimable blessings of "Liberty and Safety!" Or what are the inconveniences of a few months to the tributary bondage of ages? The meanest peasant in America, blessed with these sentiments, is a happy man compared with a New York Tory; he can eat his morsel without repining, and when he has done, can sweeten it with a repast of wholesome air; he can take his child by the hand and bless it, without feeling the conscious shame of neglecting a parent's duty....

"He that is not a supporter of the independent States of America in the same degree that his religious and political principles would suffer him to support the government of any other country, of which he called himself a subject, is, in the American sense of the word, A TORY; and the instant that he endeavors to bring his toryism into practice, he becomes A TRAITOR. The first can only be detected by a general test,and the law hath already provided for the latter.

"Disaffection to independence is the badge of a Tory....

"The part which the Tories were to act, was, by downright lying, to endeavor to put the continent off its guard, and to divide and sow discontent in theminds of such Whigs as they might gain an influence over. In short,to keep up a distraction here, that the force sent from England might be able to conquer in "one campaign." They and the ministry were, by a different game, playing into each other's hands.

"The cry of the Tories in England was, "No reconciliation, no accommodation," in order to obtain the greater military force; while those in America were crying nothing but "reconciliation and accommodation," that the force sent might conquer with the less resistance....their principle is to worship the power which they are most afraid of."

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Memorial Day

I'm posting this a day late, but I just got back so...

It's Memorial Day. Time to pay tribute to all of our soldiers.

I believe one of the best tributes we can pay them is to keep this country worthy of such great sacrifice.

During this last Presidential campaign, I became aware of the choice that our nation faced. It wasn't a choice between two candidates, at least not really. I hate to borrow a line from John Kerry, but it really was a choice between two Americas.

This last election was the Identity Crisis of 2008. We had to decide: do we remain the country of individualism and free enterprise set up by our founding fathers, or do we give up--do we throw up our hands and admit that we're not smart enough to live our own lives, that we're not industrious enough to make something of ourselves, that we just can't do it; we need the government to do it for us?

That was the choice we faced, and that is the choice we still face today.

On this Memorial Day, let us not only remember our service men and women, but let us remember the ideals that they fought for, and still fight for:

Those are words you don't hear very much from politicians anymore. Those words sum up what it is to be an American.

America was founded on an idea, a principle, a belief in self-evident truths that all men were created equal; that they were endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, and that to secure these rights governments were instituted among men, that when any form of government becomes destructive of those ends, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it. I wonder how many of our kids in public schools today have even read those words.

I think we're in the trouble we're in because we don't know who we are anymore. We have forgotten what it is to be an American. We've been told that those ideas are outdated, old-fashioned, that they just don't work anymore. The world has moved on from such antiquated notions as dignity, justice, and the right to stand on your own two feet without the government telling you where, why, when and how. We hear all the time about Thomas Paine and Common Sense, but how many of us have ever actually read it?

We don't even know why we are a country anymore, why we separated from Great Britain in the first place, why so many of our ancestors were ready and willing to suffer, bleed, and die for a future they would never see.

We are so blessed, and we don't even know it.

Now, we stand on the precipice, ready to hand over our birthright for a bowl of weak pottage because we don't even realize what that birthright means. We perish for lack of knowledge.

200 years ago, Alexis de Tocqueville warned us about what he saw as the type of despotism democratic nations had to fear:

"It would seem that if despotism were to be established amongst the democratic nations of our days, it might assume a different character; it would be more extensive and more mild; it would degrade men without tormenting them....

Above this race of men stands an immense and tutelary power, which takes upon itself alone to secure their gratifications, and to watch over their fate. That power is absolute, minute, regular, provident, and mild. It would be like the authority of a parent, if, like that authority, its object was to prepare men for manhood; but it seeks on the contrary to keep them in perpetual childhood: it is well content that the people should rejoice, provided they think of nothing but rejoicing.

For their happiness such a government willingly labors, but it chooses to be the sole agent and the only arbiter of that happiness: it provides for their security, foresees and supplies their necessities, facilitates their pleasures, manages their principal concerns, directs their industry, regulates the descent of property, and subdivides their inheritances--what remains, but to spare them all the care of thinking and all the trouble of living?

Thus it every day renders the exercise of the free agency of man less useful and less frequent; it circumscribes the will within a narrower range, and gradually robs a man of all the uses of himself....

After having thus successively taken each member of the community in its powerful grasp, and fashioned them at will, the supreme power then extends its arm over the whole community. It covers the surface of society with a net-work of small complicated rules, minute and uniform, through which the most original minds and the most energetic characters cannot penetrate, to rise above the crowd.

The will of man is not shattered, but softened, bent, and guided: men are seldom forced by it to act, but they are constantly restrained from acting: such a power does not destroy, but it prevents existence; it does not tyrannize, but it compresses, enervates, extinguishes, and stupefies a people, till each nation is reduced to be nothing better than a flock of timid andindustrious animals, of which the government is the shepherd....

By this system the people shake off their state of dependence just long enough to select their master, and then relapse into it again....It is, indeed, difficult to conceive how men who have entirely given up the habit of self-government should succeed in making a proper choice of those by whom they are to be governed; and no one will ever believe that a liberal, wise, and energetic government can spring from the suffrages of a subservient people."

And here he mentions the choice we faced in 2008, although many did not realize it:

"The vices of rulers and the ineptitude of the people would speedily bring about its ruin; and the nation, weary of its representatives and of itself, would create freer institutions, or soon return to stretch itself at the feet of a single master."
It may be that we will wake up (the rumblings of awakening can already be felt) and come to our senses before it's too late. Perhaps the real choice will face us in the coming years, once Americans realize the choice that is set before them, unlike in 2008 when many did not yet see the election for what it really was.

For the last one hundred years the government has slowly been fashioning the bell whose ring will signal the end of America as we know it. The current administration has begun the preparations of fastening that bell to the ceiling of the Oval Office and is ready to give it a good whack, and the young generation coming up and too many of the rest of us have been so dumbed down that we don't even realize it.

But one moment of truth is worth ten thousand years of error. Strike up the brass band and play America the Beautiful, and you'll get a glimpse of the truth again. Read the words of our founding fathers, know them, make them your own. Catch their vision. Teach that vision to your friends and your enemies, your neighbors and your co-workers. Make your children learn them. Knowledge is power.

Power to the people, and God bless America.