To win the future, conservatives need to give voters a positive image of a can-do America and a can-do Republican Party *UPDATED*

For the past four years, conservatives have been fighting a relentlessly rearguard, defensive action.  For those same four years, conservatives have lost every rearguard, defensive action that they’ve fought.  Or if they haven’t actually lost, the best that they’ve managed is a stalemate that stalls Progressivism, but doesn’t advance conservative values.  Even the stunning 2010 “shellacking” proved ineffective, as shellackings really only work if you take over Congress entirely, rather than just getting half of it.

Anger

Conservative also don’t seem to be faring too well in the culture wars.  To use abortion as just one example, in the 2012 election, conservatives lost the chance to take over Congress when Progressives successfully demonized two Republican Senate candidates who are pro-Life.  More than that, it seems as if, contrary to past trends showing that Americans are inclined to a pro-Life view, a recent poll gave a definitive victory to American support for abortion.

Ironically, right up until the 2012 election, many conservatives (myself included) thought that these tactics would work. We believed that a jobless recovery (a stock market that benefited from Obama’s crony capitalism, even as more and more people became unemployed), creeping inflation, flabby home sales, depreciating savings, rising medical costs, and all the other signs of a sick economy, would turn voters against Obama.

We also thought that proofs of corruption (Fast and Furious), incompetency (Benghazi), and crony capitalism (Solyndra), would turn voters against Obama.  They didn’t.

Sad

Sure we knew that Romney, although a good and intellectually brilliant man, was only a decent candidate, but we thought that, given all of Obama’s failures and dishonesty, Romney’s charisma deficit wouldn’t be a problem.  And had Romney been a Democrat, it really wouldn’t have been a problem.  He was a Republican, though, which meant that sterling character and brilliant economic chops were inadequate to fend off the extraordinarily vicious character assassination that the White House and the media launched against him.

We conservatives hadn’t counted on Americans buying such disgusting canards or ignoring ugly facts, but they did. Between the media running interference, general disinterest from voters more fascinated by Honey Boo Boo and Jersey Shores than by politics, and Americans’ probable fear of voting a black man out of the White House, conservatives got to watch Obama win again.

In the wake of Obama’s victory, conservatives in the media and in the blogosphere have responded by amping up their previous tactics.  Considering that Obama won’t be running again in 2016, spending all of our political capital and emotional energy attacking him doesn’t seem like a good use of resources.  Be that as it may, conservatives are Obama is still Target No. 1.  There certainly is a lot to get fired up about, most notably the way in which Obama seized upon Sandy Hook as an excuse to seize guns.  Nothing will come of it, of course, since there are too many Democrats who like guns too, but Obama has successfully framed the issue to be one of life- and child-loving Democrats squaring off against gun-crazed, child-murdering Republicans.

Rather than running about like headless chickens who are still trying to peck the President to death with details, we might do better focusing on very specific weaknesses and not letting those weaknesses vanish from the public eye.  To me, the most obvious are (a) the economy and (b) his handling of Benghazi.

Backstabbing

Not content with putting even more effort into tactics that have been proven failures, Republicans are adding something new:  finger-pointing and back-stabbing.  Stephen Sondheim’s “It’s Your Fault,” from Into The Woods, summarizes perfectly the spectacle that Republicans are now making of themselves:

Here’s the thing: Anger can only last so long and fire us up so much. After anger comes depression, which some say is anger turned inward, but I say depression is anger exhausted.

If even true believers like me are turned off and are tuning out because of this relentless negativity and internecine viciousness, can you imagine what’s going on with ordinary, rather disengaged voters?  On the one hand they have an ebullient, confident President who has proudly announced an “inclusive” agenda (never mind that it excludes the 49% of the country that didn’t vote for him) and, on the other hand, we have a dispirited, mean-spirited, flabby conservative movement.

Not only do people like winners, they dislike sore losers.  Worse, the media isn’t there to pick up the pieces for us as it did when Bush kept the White House for a second term.  Instead, it’s going to prey on our relentless negativity, magnify it, and throw it back at us — all while the American people shy away from the political party that smells like old roadkill.

Well, that was my own carping and finger-pointing.  It was a necessary premise to what comes next in this post — coming up with a strategy to re-position conservatives as a winning team.

It’s tempting to begin by trying, yet again, to define conservativism.  I’m not going to make the mistake, however, of sticking myself onto that tar baby.  Unlike the relentlessly lockstep Progressives, whose allegiance to the party line helps them win, conservatives are a diverse lot.  Some have had way too much schooling and some have had less than they would have liked.  Some are already wealthy and some hope to be wealthy.  Some live in urban areas, some in suburban enclaves, and some live on farms or in the back woods.  Some have roots reaching back centuries in America (black or white, Asian or Hispanic), while some are recent immigrants from every part of the globe.  Some are pro-Choice and some are pro-Life.  Most support the Second Amendment, but with varying degrees of enthusiasm.

Patriotism

Indeed, when I think about it, there are only two things I can say with absolute certainty about American conservatives:  This first is that they truly love America.  It’s a pure love.  They believe that America is an exceptional place, not in spite of her founding principles, but because of them.  While they recognize that America has erred in the past, they also understand that she, unlike just about any other country in the world, has corrected herself, sometimes at the cost of much spilled American blood.

In this undiluted patriotism, conservatives differ from the Left, which loves America as a wife-beater loves his wife:  “I show my love for my wife by focusing only on her flaws and failings.  And because I really love her, I routinely beat the crap out of her to help her improve herself.”

The second thread binding conservatives is that they want smaller, cheaper Federal government.  They differ on how much smaller and how much cheaper, but they recognize two things about the government we have.  The first is that it’s breaking the bank, which may not worry Obama, but which is very worrisome for those who have the wits to see what happens to Western countries that go bankrupt.  Today’s news shows as Greece, which is becoming scarily primitive; yesterday’s news shows us post-WWI Germany, that responded to economic chaos by inviting genocidal socialists into the Reichstag.

The second thing conservatives recognize when they look at Obama’s inauguration announcement that he intends to keep spending taxpayer money to enlarge the federal government is that bigger government means less individual freedom.  Conservatives may disagree about the precise amount of individual freedom necessary for happiness, but they’re pretty sure that individuals aren’t happy when the state has too much control over their lives.

Knowing that patriotism and individual freedom are the ties that bind conservatives, shouldn’t we be embarking upon a campaign to appeal to them and, moreover, to show them that we conservatives are Happy Warriors, not whining, vicious losers?  It’s my rhetorical question, so I get to answer with a resounding YES.

Ronald Reagan - the Happy Warrior

Having answered my question to my satisfaction, the remaining question becomes what form should this Reagan-esque Happy Warrior initiative take?  Here’s a list of three things we can do:

1.  Write to your favorite radio hosts (Rush, Sean, Dennis, Hugh, Mark, etc.) and ask them to devote at least one hour a week to highlighting the good that is America.  Even better, have this pro-America hour reach out to minorities who share conservative values, but who have been scared into thinking that the Republicans are the party of White Supremacists and the KKK.  It’s useless to point out that this kind of racism was the Democrats’ stock in trade.  In the here and now, Republicans are stuck with that label and need to counter it.  What better way than to interview a Vietnamese woman who escaped the fall of Saigon, came to America with nothing, started a business, raised a family, and now can point to successful children and grandchildren, all of whom, after leaving college, went to work in the family’s thriving business.  Ditto for the Nicaraguan man who escaped the Death Squads, the East Asian family who fled their small village’s grinding poverty, and the black woman who broke free from the crime and degradation of America’s welfare-funded inner cities.

2.  Instead of carping about Progressives on Facebook or Twitter (which preaches to the choir without converting anyone else), keep posting American success stories that are premised on traditional American values:  hard work, honesty, self-reliance, etc.

3.  Leave comments on this blog (or write to me:  Bookwormroom *at* gmail.com), giving practical suggestions for revitalizing a positive conservativism that engages people.  I want concrete initiatives that ordinary conservatives can do on a daily basis, whether shopping, seeking out entertainment, socializing, working, blogging, etc., that will help to advance a positive, welcoming vision of conservativism that’s predicated on an abiding patriotism and a belief that federal government must become smaller and cheaper.

Everybody likes a winner.  We’re not winning right now, but it behooves us to start projecting a winning attitude.  Otherwise, we’re just going to be the crazy uncle in the attic who scares voters away.

UPDATE:  WIN!  (Hat tip: JKB and Newmark’s Door.)

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Comments

  1. weathtd says

    While that all sounds good, Romney and Rush had it right.  You can’t beat Santa Claus.  The takers and leaches on our country will vote for Democrats every time even though history is clear they should run from the Dems as fast as possible.

  2. Charles Martel says

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    While I agree with Book that we should be robust in explaining and defending America’s virtues, I also agree with weathtd that we’ve reached the tipping point—there are simply more takers now than givers, and in the ultra low-information environment that the media and academy have deliberately fashioned, the odds of converting Americans back to a love of country are stacked against us.
     
    The key here is to take an ultra-long view. I think the old United States is about to pass from history and our task is to prepare the way, as best we can, for the America that comes after it. So we plant seeds, even in hard soil, that can later sprout in people’s minds.
     
    Here’s how: The collapse of our economy, if the current trend continues, is inevitable. When it happens, all of our earnest efforts at deflecting the MSM’s lies won’t save us from being blamed for it. Millions of takers and low-info voters will be manipulated into great anger that we somehow destroyed the money spigot.
     
    But what if in front of their eyes is hard proof that our notions actually hold out the best hope for them? Armed cities with low crime rates? Balanced-budget states where tax burdens aren’t oppressive? Regions where union rackets have been beaten back and contained? What if as thugs in Democratic cities run riot to protest the shut-off of their benefits the same doesn’t happen in GOP towns and municipalities where armed citizens make short work of such punks?
     
    Maybe our best tack is to do as old Roman plantation owners did in 400 AD when it became obvious that the center would no longer hold: Take their vast latifundia landholdings and fortify them as castles to protect the locals and preserve the vestiges of Roman culture until a renaissance could occur. Let Rome/Washington fall to its own corruption and deal with the armies of vandals and parasites that have beset it. A fortified Texas, or Utah, or Alabama, in the sense of small government and armed and informed citizens, can set an example that the rest of America might wake up to in the aftermath of collapse. Show, don’t tell.
     
    PS: If the people who voted for Obama want to try pillaging the independent mini-states, the way they’ve done to places like California, Illinois, and New York, they should remember that they don’t know how to use modern weapons. They voted them out of sight. Good luck taking on a determined group of armed Korean grocers or old white Texans.

  3. Spartacus says

    “For the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and chastises every son whom he receives.”  — Hebrews 12:6
     
    Martel, I have to join you in the prediction of very interesting times ahead.  Let us pray that God, who is a God of Tough Love, will indulge America with a little love tap upside the head and knock some sense into us.  In the meantime, yes, we should certainly plant the seeds of the positive American vision with all who might allow themselves, now or later, to be led into the light.  But also stock up on 7.62… love taps can be more interesting than most people care for, and it’s always good to be prepared.

  4. JKB says

    I can’t say I’ve got positive ideas at the moment.  I have been arguing that we should provide “gun proofing” for all kids starting in kindergarten.  That generally sends the Left off the wall but it does reveal their irrationality.  You teach kids to stay out of the road by showing them a road, is it so odd to teach them about real firearms should they run across one.  It isn’t like criminals don’t throw them in bushes or cops don’t leave them in bathroom stalls.  It isn’t like a child doesn’t get a wrong impression about real guns by watching TV shows, movies, cartoons and video games.  
     
    In hopes of prompting ideas, in this talk aei-ideas.org…video-milton-friedman-on-governments-drive-for-power/ Milton Friedman spells the problem at about minute 4:15.  The Left has a simple argument, government solves your problems.  We on the otherhand have a complex argument, Adam Smith’s the invisible hand.  How many people working for their own purpose create wealth and prosperity for everyone.  Reagan tried it and the Left started shouting ‘trickle down economics”.  
     
    Now here’s the big problem globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot…meet-baxter-robot-out-to-get-your.html   Manufacturing is making a comeback but not with jobs.  Robots are getting the jobs.  Robots are competitive with Chinese workers.  
     
    So what does this mean in a country with a failing education system and far to many of those who do complete college having no skills that can’t be done cheaper by robots?  How long before the first robot barista?  That makes real expresso, faster, more accurately and without attitude?  Sadly, food stamp rolls are going to grow before we see the other side.  But if conseratives can start promoting small business creation for those needing work?  Sure, it isn’t like giving someone a “lifelong” job the Left likes to promote but then those jobs don’t pan out these days.  

  5. says

    I pretty much already tunned out Republican and Democrat politics for the entirety of 2008 to 2012. People may have noticed how frequently, or rather infrequently, I commented on various ‘political stuff” during that time period.
     
    One reason was merely because most of the stuff being done, wasn’t going to matter against the Left. They weren’t going at the core of the issue, the center of the enemy. They were going after mirages or the extremities of the battlespace, the stuff that only matters after you win, but does not give you the victory itself. People were treating it like the same old political game, when they have no chance of winning until they realize it’s a war first and foremost. People kept saying they didn’t want a war, they believed in the US Constitution. While that’s nice and good, the LEft doesn’t believe in any such thing, and they know they are at war because they are busy killing ur arse while they’re at it. Ted Kennedy driving over a river and drowning a woman, while he runs for his daddy to cover it all up, wasn’t a tragedy. It was a “necessary sacrifice for the great lion of a man that is Ted Kennedy, fighting for the cause of all women”. How many people expected to “die for the Leftist cause” in 2008? How many people expected Eric Holder to say Fast and Furious was a mistake?
     
    While I didn’t necessarily go out and say the Left would win in 2012, at the same time I wasn’t betting with the optimists either. Expect the best, plan for the worst.
     
    The Leftist alliance is too powerful for any “mere” election, even if one had managed to get rid of Obama, to cure America’s inner cancer and behavior. Win or lose in 2012, the Left wasn’t going to go away. Without the Left being taken out and executed, America’s problems will also not go away.
     
    While there’s a bunch of stuff people can do to fight the Leftist alliance in the US, much of it revolves around insurgency and counter-insurgency operations and doctrine. Meaning, warfare, not “politics”. Yet, we have not reached a critical mass where we have even enough people that believe in the war to start up a cadre for training. The time is not yet here, for people have not known enough suffering. One side doesn’t hate the other side as much as it is vice a versa. Wars don’t happen with such setups, only massacres and ethnic cleansing of the “pacifist” side. If we had control of even one city, that would be different. We would have millions of ready to be trained citizen soldiers, freed from Leftist plantations. But that has yet to occur too.
     
     
     

  6. says

    Until people can show that they can free slaves from the Leftist regime in a small scale local setup, like Atlanta… don’t expect me to think they know how to save this nation of 330+ million people. They can’t even say 3 million, for justice’s sake nor their own. That’s the bottom line. To save the world, first you must be able to save yourself.

  7. lee says

    Me, I am terrified. I am praying that we stem the slide downhill. And I will be honest–I am terrified for purely selfish reasons.
     
    I also feel guilty because for far too long I was one of the crowd that helped push us this way. For the first twenty years of my adult life, I was the grasshopper–I went to college (on my folks’ dime) and just kept going. When the going got tough–GRAD SCHOOL! (With assistantships, fellowships, and, foolishly, loans. And my folks’ dime.) I wasted–let me repeat that–WASTED so much time and money, and woke up around the age of forty to the fact that the ant really had it right. I have been working, but my salary has been stagnant for the last twelve years. Twelve years ago, it wasn’t a bad salary for someone fresh out of GRAD SCHOOL. But I worked in the design industry (figures for a grasshopper, eh?) and every year almost, there was a layoff. I’m out of the design field now, but I am still very low on the totem pole. I am in my early fifties now, with not a whole lot socked away in IRA’s and 401(k)’s. I will never be able to retire, but I will be forced at some point because as an “old person,” I will be considered a drain on society… (Our fearless leader thought his grandmother–who helped raised him–should never have had her hip replacement since she was going to die anyhow… Obamacare pretty much only provides for “palliative care” for the over 70 crowd. And somehow, I don’t think “palliative care” will consist of much more than Edward G. Robinson’s last ride in Soylent Green.)
     
    My husband (we’ve only been married a short while) isn’t doing much better. He got divorced a few years ago, and just to get out of it as quickly as possible, he paid pretty much every dime he had. So even though he had saved up a lot of money through the years, by the end of the divorce, it was all gone. He moved, and got a job, any job. He and I both work at pretty low-paying jobs. We are doomed. And I think we are doomed MORE under the future our fearless leader has planned for us than under a future that I (and other Tea Partiers) would like to see.
     
    And Book is right: this will NEVER convince any of the grasshoppers to convert. They think it is summer all the time, and that winter will never come. And anyone who tries to warn them about winter, they will ignore as an annoying buzzing Cassandra gnat.  And since I am pretty much an constant Eyore about the future, I think, in order to help the cause… I should… stay away from blogging. (Whoa! That’ll be a challenge! [sarcasm alert] Since I don’t do it very regularly as it is…) Actually, I think it would help my general outlook to FOLLOW Book’s suggestion, and continue blogging, blog more often, and blog about the subject matters she suggest. If nothing else, it will cheer ME up! :-)
     
    Awhile  back, I suggested trying to convert someone. Just one person, each year. I am still working on that. I haven’t started the actual “conversion” process–I admit that I am trying to stack the deck. I am looking for the most likely “convertible.” I have a few Jewish friends–Upper West Side and Hollywood–who, despite their locales, may be potential converts. There is a lot about them that is very conservative, rather Tea Party-ish. But I think they are so steeped in the folklore of “Jews must vote Democrat” that they do it really without thinking. Other than that, they actually are intelligent, thoughtful people.
     
    Thanks for being here, Book!

  8. SADIE says

    I am weary, I am tired and I am not reassured in any way, shape or form. Why has dissemination of facts and the “how to” handbook fallen to the unelected? Why have elected Republicans treated the Tea Party with such disdain? Ungrateful bastards. It is they that have access to the public mic – isn’t that why we elected them.
    There are currently 146,000,000 registered voters in the United States. Approximately, 40% of them don’t vote – they’re the target audience if there will be any change.
     
     
    “Good luck taking on a determined group of armed Korean grocers or old white Texans.”
     
    Charles, “Good luck” has hit a snag.
     
     
    http://nicedeb.wordpress.com/2013/01/22/shock-claim-new-obama-litmus-test-for-military-leaders-is-they-must-be-willing-to-fire-on-us-citizens/

  9. JKB says

    Just read this and it has sparked some good ideas  
    stuartschneiderman.blogspot…the-new-american-ruling-class.html 
     
    First off, conservatives need to stop being so negative, especially since the solution is not for government to take over, to conservatives.  We need to channel Reagan.  America is great, exceptional, and brimming with potential.  And to the solution to the current problems is to get big government’s hands from around the throat of regular Americans.  America has potential but it has always faltered when government becomes to over-weaning.  Krugman and others will cite the post-WWII era but that was when the rest of the world had been destroyed by over-weaning governments or were just joining the world at large.  
     
    In short, we need to go positive on America and ignore those who denigrate her, even those who were taught that in fine, elite universities.  The more we beat back the lies taught by the academics the more their victims are likely to see the real world.  
     
    There is more there.  Perhaps ideas on how to beat back the modern clerisy who believe they can keep selling their gloom and doom America even in the face of reality.  

  10. JKB says

    BTW, Schneiderman does a good job in a more recent post explaining why anti-abortion, at least the stringent versions are losers.  Basically, think of how many women have had abortions, how many are sisters, girlfriends, mothers, daughters of men, the decide if intimating they are baby-killers is a good plan?
     
    I’d like to see conservatives in Congress stop railing about “regulation” and start arguing for streamlining, refining, reforming regulation.  ”To much regulation” is an idiotic stance if you don’t follow it up with a real plan to balance the good effects and remove the bad effects.  And that could include the arbitrary discretion of prosecutors who let those with juice off for willful violations while throwing the full force of their office against those who end up in the crosshairs for accidental or incidental violations.  Not remove it completely but perhaps some form of accountability.

  11. Mike Devx says

    Ymar says (#6): Yet, we have not reached a critical mass where we have even enough people that believe in the war to start up a cadre for training. The time is not yet here, for people have not known enough suffering.
     
    Ymar says (#7) : Until people can show that they can free slaves from the Leftist regime in a small scale local setup, like Atlanta…
     
    Lee says (#8) : Awhile  back, I suggested trying to convert someone. Just one person, each year. I am still working on that. I haven’t started the actual “conversion” process–I admit that I am trying to stack the deck. I am looking for the most likely “convertible.”
     
    Book says: Knowing that patriotism and individual freedom are the ties that bind conservatives, shouldn’t we be embarking upon a campaign to appeal to them and, moreover, to show them that we conservatives are Happy Warriors, not whining, vicious losers?  It’s my rhetorical question, so I get to answer with a resounding YES.
     
    Book, first of all, you left out “culturally conservative values” and “economically conservative principles”  from the list of the ties that bind conservatives.  You will not get there by fighting this based only patriotism and individual freedom.
     
    1. Reagan studied for years how to be an effective communicator.  He collected and organized box after box of quips, sayings, proverbs, arguments, etc.  He was no dummy, and his skills were no accident.  If you’re going to compete socially and in the world of ideas – at the bar stool, in the blog, anywhere – preparation and practice will help a great deal.  Speak to people in their language and idioms, not your own.
     
    2. Do not be silent.  Silence does mean approval.  Even if you’re not ready, speak up.  Don’t hide!  If you’re having a bad day, just smirk, or merely put on that very skeptical expression and fold your arms in front of you and lean back.  Don’t be afraid of the low-energy ad hominem attack.  (A snort and a “Well, that’s one of the stupidest ideas I’ve heard in years” is perfectly fine for a low-energy day.)  Do not be silent!  Say something, anything, to let those around you know (if they are on the fence or can be swayed) that they are not alone.
     
    3. Find a way to speak positively and enthusiastically rather than as an Eeyore.  This one will be particularly difficult for me.  We need to reduce the government Leviathan, the government Octopus-with-a-million-tentacled-arms.  We need to starve it.  How do you avoid negativity when “reduce” and “starve” are your goals?  Telling people they are being trained into slavery or into being sheep is also negative…  I’m going to struggle forever with this one.
     
    4. Local politics: The school board.  Run for it, or recruit the right person, or just support theright people.  Find someone willing to fight for a common sense K-6 education that harshly targets the propagandists who would spend much of that class time training the children to be good little leftist sheeps and global warming activists and save the polar-bear activitists (and the next big, HUGE thing, “Sustainability” activitists.  You ain’t SEEN full-blown statism until you’ve seen where the Sustainability Statists are going to drive us.)  
     
    Local politics: City council, etc.  Ensure conservatives are appointed wherever budgets can be swayed.
     
    5. I repeat: DO NOT BE SILENT!  Always speak up, in whatever manner, at short or at length, whatever is most appropriate to your comfort and situation.
     

  12. Mike Devx says

    I just ordered a couple of books that should help me out:
     
    How To Win Friends And Influence People by Carnegie  (highly recommended by Book herself)
     
    Take Back Your Government, by Robert Heinlein.  I’ve always heard good things about this 1940s book.  Its practical suggestions are dated, I’m sure, but the principles BEHIND those suggestions are timeless.  A new edition was just published in 2012:
    http://www.amazon.com/Take-Back-Government-Robert-Heinlein/dp/1612420613/ref=lh_ni_t?ie=UTF8&psc=1
     

  13. lee says

    A bit off topic, but I have to run with something that Mike Devx wrote:
    4. Local politics: [...] (…You ain’t SEEN full-blown statism until you’ve seen where the Sustainability Statists are going to drive us.)  
     
    BE AFRAID! BE VERY AFRAID!
     
    The Gang Green was another one of my BIG wake up calls. I drank the Kool-Aid until I took a class on “Green Building.” (I wrote about it here: http://moxiehoxie.blogspot.com/2008/02/green-is-new-red.html )
     
    Some of the things my classmates came up with are things I see all over the “Sustainability” hellhole:

    Abolish private ownership of land, buildings. If all land is publically/state controlled, development can be controlled, “smart” development would be the law, and all building would be “green.”

    Establishment of a sort of “green” WPA (or NRA, as in FDR): A sort of “army” of “green-collar” people to verify, oversee, install, initiate, mandate, etc., green practices.

    Establish an educational system that focuses on “values” education, wherein “values” is defined as living a “green” life: minimal carbon footprint, minimal environmental impact. Development of a (politically correct) kids afterschool activity similar to scouting that has the same focus.

    That is JUST the tip of the iceberg! And if you have any doubts that “green” in inded the new “red,” see the rest of the list over at my blog, and just how well it lines up with Marx’s Communist Manifesto! That was just from one class, but they spit out the party line of Agenda 21 and the other Green Nutjobs.
     
     

  14. Spartacus says

    lee,
     
    We might use sustainability to our advantage, but we need to change what the word means.  The trend on this graph is not sustainable.  Here in the US, not only do we produce relatively little pollution, but we are actually cleaning up from the decades when we were less careful.  Not so in the developing world.  Why?  They’re a little more focused on other things, like eating.  It’s Maslow’s Pyramid, and fluffy things like environmental protection are at the top.  When this graph tips over, and everyone looks in their wallet and realizes that for years, it’s just been full of Monopoly money, things will change dramatically, and no one will give a [hoot] about parts per million of lead in the drinking water, or whatever.  So, environmental sustainability depends on the prerequisite of economic stability, or else all of the good work of the past forty years will be utterly lost.
     
    If we can manage to plant enough thought seeds that no one can use the term “sustainability” without thinking of both, that will be a good step forward.

  15. lee says

    Spartacus–
    As far as I can tell, the progs think it’s all just magic–money WILL appear. If you mint, it WILL exist.
    Also, the GREEN/RED nuts value the poor, not the real poor, but their romantic ideal of poverty. Read my blog post to which I linke above. Check out the “carbon footprint” idiocy. It’s all about the poorest on the planet and how they romanticize it/them. But back to the magic of money…
    I had an argument with someone once (this was at the beginning of my journey from grasshopper to ant, from left to right) over the value of stock, and ultimately, the value of money. I claimed that ultimately, the value of anything was primarily based on the perceived value of whatever it is. They talked to me about P/E and other ratios, and about a multitude of other finance terms. I talked about tulip madness, and gold. (Gold is neat for a whole lot of intrinsice reasons, but its real value in terms of what it commands on the market is because of how its perceived–rare, great hedge against monetary uncertainty, shiny, doesn’t oxidize, good conductor… Some of which have to do with what gold is intrinsically, but only if people want a metal that doesn’t oxidize or is a good conductor or…) There was NO WAY I was EVER going to convince this person. This person is a reliably left-voting Upper West Side resident. Oops! More another time… Gotta run…

  16. says

    While JKB highlights taking back the academia propaganda culture, I can’t quite say that it will be effective. For one thing, it took the Left a century to half a century to get where they. Do we have the time to cook up a counter program that will take another 50 years? What will they be doing to us during those 50 years? We allowed the Left to say and do whatever they wanted to in the 1960s because we “believed” in freedom, tolerance, and self expression. Why would the LEft allow us the freedom to do what we wish?
     
    To use the example of a propaganda device, the Left considered Vietnam veterans to be baby killers. Yet how many of the new military generation voted for Obama? More than one might realize. And how many of their votes for the opposition wasn’t counted? More than one might realize.
     
    The point is, propaganda is only there to set the foundation. The real crushing force comes afterwards. If people were convinced America was the land of honey and freedom, they would take those beliefs and use it to promote slavery, economic monopoly, and state fascism, because their peers would force them into doing so. Recall the environment of Ivy League schools on campus conservatives.
     
    The Left will not allow what they did to the US, to be done to their own regime.

Trackbacks

  1. Watcher’s Council nominations…

    The Noisy Room – There’s No Truth In The News And No News In The Truth Simply Jews – What Jonathan Freedland doesn’t get Joshuapundit-Obama’s 2nd Inaugural – Darkness at Noon The Political Commentator – The hit and run President!……

  2. Watcher’s Council results…

    *First place with 3  votes! Bookworm Room –To win the future, conservatives need to give voters a positive image of a can-do America and a can-do Republican PartySecond place with 2  votes – The Right Planet- The Left’s War on……

  3. Watcher’s Council Results…

    Here are this week’s full results. Council Winners*First place with 3  votes! Bookworm Room –To win the future, conservatives need to give voters a positive image of a can-do America and a can-do Republican PartySecond place with 2  votes – T…

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