From The Editorial Desk, intellego ut credam, Novus Ordo Seclorum, Politics, Status quaestionis, Weekly Politikos

I QUIT

Image

Due to a health emergency, I am quitting the blog Libertarian Monks. It’s been a grand time, but all good things — as is true with bad things — must end.

Suffice to say, I would offer a serious and heartfelt thanks to all those crafty and intelligent band of classical liberal readers, however small a group they may be, who’ve stuck with us and read our brand x of vicious pontifications on limited government and the need for a constitutional revolution in these United States. You’re the best.

I appreciate everyone who ever read this blog.

Goodbye.

Sincerely Yours,

David Joseph Beilstein

Standard
Mr Robert Luke Capehert, Novus Ordo Seclorum, Politics, Status quaestionis, Weekly Politikos

DREHER GOES NUTS

Image

By Robert L. Capehert

ROD DREHER is at it again (jeepers!) in a column written for The American Conservative, sometime before the congressional Republicans caved to the Obama White House agenda.

 In “The Strangelove Republicans,” Dreher writes,

Today I heard an update on the radio from the fiscal crisis in Washington, and thought, “The Republicans really are going to push us over the edge.” I hope I’m wrong, of course, but it becomes more thinkable with each passing hour. I thought next about how hard we’ve worked to invest wisely, and to sock money away for retirement. If the world wakes up Thursday morning plunging into a 2008-style economic collapse, we could find our investments massively damaged. Some people we know have only now built their nest eggs back up after the 2008 disaster. We could be looking at that. Or worse.

In a previous column, good man Rod Dreher insisted he was not a leftist. But when it comes to his animus toward Republicans, he argues as a leftist. His reasons for opposing Republicans seem awfully close to the same reasons leftists oppose Republican policies, and or, strategy.

First, the President of the United States does not automatically get whatever budget he desires. Congress controls the purse of the Federal Government—at least constitutionally. So, Congress can decide against funding a program if it so desires.

Secondly, the 14th Amendment requires the interest on U.S. debt be paid (first) so there was no way Republicans could have “push [us] America off a cliff. Only Barack Obama could have done that which would have been a dereliction of his duty as President of these United States.

The 2008 financial collapse was not caused by the actions that Republicans recently sought to push. I am unsure of what Dreher’s point is here.

The economic collapse of 2008 was caused by government—too much of it—not Republicans shuttering government doors in order to force a cut in entitlement spending, debt concerns, etc. If Dreher is so concerned about fiscal matters, personal and public, then one might expect graver concern over ObamaCare. Of course, the last time Dreher talked about ObamaCare he talked almost giddy about how ObamaCare was settled law.

Considering what the Democratic Party and President Obama have done thus far with their power, Dreher’s last paragraph is a construction in stupidity. Dreher does get one thing right—which is the offensive nature the Republican Party seeks to baptize the Christian religion for political purposes.

Nevertheless, it is not the Grand Old Party that has brought America to the brink, but President Obama and his radical agenda. If Dreher is serious about classical liberalism—of free markets and free minds—he ought to comprehend such notions.

And writing this below does not address serious ills to his thinking:

Yes. I cannot believe I’m saying this, but I hope the House flips to the Democrats in 2014, so we can be rid of these nuts. Let Ted Cruz sit in the Senate stewing in his precious bodily fluids, and let Washington get back to the business of governing.

Differences of opinion do exist on the American right. And they should. But not this different! Given President Obama’s record alone Dreher should sense how nuts his point happens to be.

I myself (all about I!) attack Republicans and the mainstream conservative movement. But I do so in light of obvious inconsistencies with the rather consistent intellectual history of classical liberalism.  Regardless, Republican mistakes in the past (which surely could justify bolting the party on principal) does not follow that a solution to our fiscal and governing mailse is to vote in a bunch of statist Democrats.

Insane.

Interesting! Rather than the soft tyranny of the statist left led by Obama the crank, being “nuts,” Mr Dreher fires at Republican conservatives and libertarians.

At their backs, no less.

What becomes inanity for Mr Dreher seems like the same manure  professionally unserious misfits like MSNBC routinely throw on classical liberals in U.S. government.

Dreher can opine he is not a “liberal” day and night. But it might be nice—horrors!—for the crunchy con to rid himself of temerity and actually celebrate liberalism in the classical sense, coming onboard to defend it, cheering those on whom seek and fight for its preservation.

If Dreher is serious about prudent governance he should understand there is little wisdom to be found with what the Democratic Party has become in these years. Prudence does not come from utopian schemas which entangle sovereign individuals in regulatory purgatory.

The statist agenda whether practised on the right or the left has impoverished American society. Dreher would do well to recognise that his desire for prudent and sound government will not come through those policies Barack Obama and the Democratic Party supposes.

Rather, they cripple the kind of free markets and free minds schema necessary for the good and innovative society.

Standard
From The Editorial Desk, Novus Ordo Seclorum, Politics, Status quaestionis, Weekly Politikos

REPUBLICANS LED TO THE SLAUGHTER

Image

By David Beilstein

Congressional Republicans were slaughtered by the Obama White House in the government shutdown debacle.

Feckless Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-OH), whom received a standing ovation for his meagre attempts — and whom was ultimately successful at crafting an agreement with with congressional Democrats —is also worthy of the strongest condemnation by serious classical liberals.

We should have known nothing of significance would be accomplished on entitlement spending, debt, or ObamaCare with such a force of impotency at the helm of congressional leadership.

Some will claim a Republican victory, as was noted here. But all that really can be said is a U.S. president with anemic poll numbers—with a whopping 86 percent of Americans thinking the country is headed in the wrong direction—President Obama was successfully able to defang Republicans. To be sure, this resided in Republican weakness, not President Obama’s strengths.

And it must be said that is an embarrassing place to be. But it is understandable. Think hard. If such were not the case, Barack Obama would not have won reelection.

We can be assured of that.

Many Republicans plan on fighting for another day. Where have we heard that kind of cheese before?

That’s the awful thing about Republicans. The aphorism about there being no time like the present to mount a robust, and dramatically inspired constitutional revolution to the Obama White House’s statist oligarchy resumes being perpetually at  arm’s length.

It’s why Republicans lose at the national level—and also why fewer Americans see reason to vote for such an irrelevant political entity.

Standard
Novus Ordo Seclorum, Politics, Weekly Politikos

RECKLESS BARRY O

Image

By David Beilstein

It is a rarified air for President Barack Obama not to be reckless, as we may call attention to the president’s perverse imprudence of late—especially in light of Rod Dreher’s unease with congressional Republican “ideologues.”

In President Obama’s battle against House Republicans, then, it is no surprise the president of these United States appears hell-bent on challenging the 14th Amendment, tempting to plunge the nation into default.

George F. Will does not always get everything right, but he did nail this issue. According to the U.S. Constitution, default would be a choice—not a necessity caused by congressional Republicans.

Aside from a battle over the funding of ObamaCare, it now appears we have a battle over the U.S. Constitution. In essence, a constitutional crisis emerges—even if the mainstream press will not admit it.

If one thought elections did not matter now is a good time to reverse such an opinion. They do matter. Libertarian Monks had as much problems with Mitt Romney as many of our faithful but modest band of readers.

But Romney would have been better than a mad-dog tyrant—doing a pretty good mimicry job a tyrant rather than a president.

Sounds harsh, I know.

But look around—take a glimpse at the purposeful chaos Barack Obama has unleashed upon American society; and ask oneself, is this what this man meant by radical transformation?

Looks like it.

Standard
artium and moribus, Novus Ordo Seclorum, Status quaestionis, Weekly Politikos

FIGHT THOSE REPUBLICAN BAST*RDS

Image

By David Beilstein

It would seem however much we may scorn the reality, Republicans have abandoned classical liberals in America in order to wheel-and-deal with President Barack H. Obama and — horrors! — Senate Majority leader Harry Reid of Nevada.

What this means, few know; less still, will offer much of an explanation. Other than, of course, Republicans have to fold.

Remember that old aphorism of “have to?”

Even still, a recent Gallup poll suggests the American people are disgusted with both political parties. President Barack H. Obama comes out slightly ahead (accordingly?) with higher approval ratings than both chambers of Congress with a paltry approval rating 36 percent.

It is not like one needed a poll to come to that conclusion. Republicans (again!) allowed Pres. Obama to lead the national conversation—despite having the upper-hand on numerous points of debate. In the news squared, support for a third party now runs close to 60 percent support from the American people in the same Gallup poll.

Of course, this does not matter much either—as there are literally dozens of third political parties with little or no support election after election.

Frankly, third parties are tempting—but electorally worthless. Not even former President Theodore Roosevelt, in 1913, could overcome the third party curse, going down in defeat against Wilson, and taking then-Pres. Taft with him.

In helping elect former Princeton President and New Jersey Governor, Woodrow Wilson to the presidency, T.R. cemented the battle against progressivism by classical liberals for 100 years. Certainly, one must admit the modern classical liberal movement is a cold war with the progressive context Pres. Wilson unleashed upon these United States, circumventing our constitutional framework.

Hell, I myself even joined the Libertarian Party of Florida because I was, and continue to be, violently disgusted with the Republican Party and the mainstream conservative movement.

But let us not be confused. The most viable libertarians whom are apart of the legislative and governing process in our Federal government are in the Republican Party. Had Ted Cruz or Rand Paul (both mainstream libertarians) run on a libertarian ticket, they would be sitting in front of the television on the outside of this nightmare.

Moreover, both Cruz and Paul have given us some of best of classically liberal talking points on a consistent basis since the pinnacle of Ronald Reagan’s presidency.

So third parties are not realistic. Not until the G.O.P is no more at least.

Third parties are funny things, really. They are popular in poll after poll—but no candidate rides them anywhere but to defeat, often times, electing the worst of three candidates. We don’t need that—especially now.

It is obvious that something needs to change. That’s clear. Many another pundits on the American right have offered salient ideas.

The best comes from radio talk show host Mark R. Levin and his recent book, The Liberty Amendments; a cogent apologetic for a state-by-state legislative effort to reform, and recapture our Constitutional republic through amendment clauses.

More than simply an entertainment “shock jock,” Mr Levin has written the most robust Constitutional solution to our progressive, slash, tyrannical malaise in 40 some odd years.

But even Levin’s concise and well-written apologetic will go nowhere unless classical liberals everywhere get involved; state-by-state, vote-by-vote.

Republicans in government aren’t going to do it. Recent developments in the Republican-held House—and wishy-washy Republicans in the senate make that incontrovertible.

War is upon classical liberals. Republicans started it.

Let’s fight those bastards!

Standard
artium and moribus, Novus Ordo Seclorum, Politics, Status quaestionis, Weekly Politikos

GLASS JAW REPUBLICANS

Image

By David Beilstein

Republicans are desperate for a deal to re-open the other 17 percent of the Federal Government. At this stage of the game no deal has been struck. Pres. Obama rejected an earlier G.O.P. offer at the beginning of the weekend.

Ironically, in seeking out a deal which continues to offer more and more to the president, Republicans have helped Obama appear principled and themselves, stridently intransigent.

In another how-not-to-negotiate moment in our political discourse (I myself was a afraid of this!), Republicans again find themselves out-communicated and out-hustled on an issue which the President of these United States, holds an untenable position.

Republicans then, appear as wimps in the face of President Barack H. Obama’s continued assault on sane governing principals.

First, we cannot afford ObamaCare. It will increase—not lower— healthcare costs by an ever, discernible amount. Moreover, the quality of healthcare will decrease. Perhaps of more concern is how healthcare will become less spontaneous to the needs of individuals, blunted by the dull edge of latticework of bureaucracy.

When it comes to other fiscal matters it gets worse. In order to maintain the solvency and reliability of the public safety net, enacted throughout numerous generations, fiscal sanity must prevail on Capital Hill and discernible spending cuts must be enacted.

Raising the debt limit does increase America’s debt—substantially!—and the president of these United States is either confused, or a liar, for saying otherwise.

In using the Federal leviathan to punish Americans to strengthen his own hand against Republicans, Pres. Obama has shown the soft tyrannical nature of his progressive ideology, and that citizens are subjects of their government, rather than government being a subject of sovereign individuals.

It does not help, of course, that Republicans and mainstream conservatives alike have not argued against such uses of government—instead, gathering a lowest common denominator political base by preaching the resentment class version of the social gospel, amped up on feinted anger over a plethora of social issues purposelessly decoupled from having anything to do with government—like whether the ten commandments and prayer in school should be imposed on the public square.

As such, the entire point of a constitutional argument against bloated and intrusive government has gone without a credible apologetic.

We can surmise whatever kind of deal is to be struck; Democratic Sen. Harry Reid will probably get 80 percent of what he wants. And he will have done so without bowing at the altar of Republican demands.

Sen. Reid will also have done so with a Democratic Party in lockstep behind him.

The Republican narrative is not one of blood and guts vainglory, but timid action altogether. One of the reasons Republicans fail to create any loyalty in their voters is because they do not stand for anything.

Ever notice those whom many hate inspire reams of admiration? That’s because principals gather passionate loyalty. Republicans lack courage. They are and continue to be wimps despite a strong position because of fiscal realities and public sentiment when it comes to ObamaCare.

But Republicans demand to act as if those things are not true—apologising for their actions.The result is they do not inspire loyalty in the electoral populace.

Even worse, Republicans have taken aim at libertarian and conservative congressional members and fired shots at their backs. Worse, some calling themselves conservative want nothing to do with opposing and defunding ObamaCare, a tyrannical piece of legislation if there ever was one.

Republicans keep giving up inches. Pres. Obama, meanwhile, though with a crappy-as-anything hand, continues to get more and more from Republicans and still make them look foolish. All of this undergirds Obama’s action even though the 44th president of these United States approval ratings are in the toilet, his political capital used up.

 

Standard
artium and moribus, Novus Ordo Seclorum, Status quaestionis, Weekly Politikos

OF CLASSICAL LIBERALISM AND REPUBLICAN IDENTITY

Image

By David Beilstein

I’d like to spend some time sitting in on the Grand Old Party’s identity in the spacious political times we happen to find ourselves in as classical liberals.

In a sense, possibility has been normed by probability in American politics–as it is elsewhere, under the sun.

Whereas both are the product of the grist of complicating factors life exudes, nevertheless, political parties and human beings together cannot put a finger on it all that precisely–nor control the multitudinous aspects of humanity within contextualised events.

On top of that, it would be helpful to interact with Mr. Kevin D. Williamson’s piece, recently published over at National Review Online.

Gentleman Williamson puts together the thesis based upon empirical datum that in America two paradoxical truths are developing: the United States is becoming more conservative, and it is becoming far less loyal to the Republican party at the same time (particularly when we periscope in on national politics).

That conundrum is worth thinking about right now in light of this astonishing fact: When it comes to the policy opinions of American voters, there have been three peak years for conservatism: 1952, 1980, and . . . right now, according to Professor James A. Stimson, whose decades-long “policy mood” project tracks the changing opinions of the U.S. electorate. Americans have grown more conservative on the whole, but the even more remarkable fact is that the electorate has grown more conservative in every state. As Larry Bartels points out in the Washington Post, the paradoxical fact is that Barack Obama was first elected in a year in which the American policy mood already was unusually conservative, and he was reelected in a year in which it had grown more conservative still. And so the question: Why did an increasingly conservative electorate elect and reelect one of the most left-wing administrations, if not the most left-wing, in American history?

Williamson’s answer: Increasingly, Americans are not associating conservatism (classical liberalism) with the Republican party, or rather, are not associating Republicans with classical liberalism, i.e., either of American conservatism on one side, or libertarianism, on the other.

That seeming paradox may be explained in part by the fact that the American public’s increasingly conservative views are not associated with an increased sense of identification with the Republican party. In late January 2004, Gallup found a Republican/Democrat split of 31 percent to 33 percent in the Democrats’ favor, with more identifying as independent  (35 percent) than as a member of either party. In September of this year, those numbers were 22/31/45. Add in the “leaners” — those who do not strictly identify with one party but generally are inclined toward its views — and the GOP was at a 44/51 disadvantage in 2004, and today is at a 41/47 disadvantage. Which is to say, the Republicans lost 3 percent who didn’t move to the Democrats, and the Democrats lost 4 percent who didn’t move to the Republicans. Independents jumped from 35 percent to 45 percent during that period.

Jonah Goldberg, Williamson’s colleague of sorts, wrote in his 2007 bestselling book, Liberal Fascism, that American society is liberal in the classical sense. Goldberg is correct of course.

To the extent the Republican party strays from classical liberalism, then, either into the stale bog of moralistic socialism (too much social conservative jeremiads), or an affinity with leftist progressivism on the other side, an erosion of the connecting fabric between the party of Lincoln and the kind of society Americans normally support in given electoral cycles unfolds.

Nothing could illustrate this more than the conundrum of same-sex marriage debates within “conservative”/Republican circles.

In peek-a-booing into the idea America’s increased sense of conservatism does not stretch uniformly across all issues, such as same-sex marriage, Williamson unpacks some of the ongoing philosophical realities at work when it comes to marriage “equality” debate:

It’s worth nothing that the rightward shift was not uniform across all issues, with the notable exception being the question of gay marriage, which Americans have grown consistently more friendly toward. (Was it as late as 2008 that Barack Obama ran for office opposing gay marriage? It was, indeed. Was it as late as 2012 that he felt safe announcing his not-unexpected reversal? Indeed.) Those of us who take a more traditional view of the role of marriage and family should note that if the American people are here in error, it is an error that in one sense speaks well of them: Americans’ shifting views on gay marriage are rooted in a deeply American sense of fair play and toleration. They may have come to the wrong conclusion, but their hearts are in the right place.

No investigation into the paradox of Republican erosion, conservative ascendency, would be complete without ideas about a way forward. Even so, gentleman Williamson unpacks some wisely-tuned logic of his own, going forward.

So as the electorate grows paradoxically more conservative and less friendly to Republicans, the challenge for the GOP is to figure out how to connect its conservatism with a conservative public that distrusts the conservative party. That doesn’t sound like a terribly difficult challenge, but it is. Conservatism is a philosophy, which is a different thing from a specific policy agenda. Talking endlessly about the middle class is not going to cut it, nor is tinkering with tax rates. And beyond the specific political platform, Republicans have to show that they can be trusted to govern with the best interests of the broad electorate in mind. In 2013, showing that Republicans can govern starts with Republican governors. If there is any upside to the shutdown showdown, it is that by highlighting the fecklessness and foolishness of Washington, it increases the odds that a governor rather than a senator will emerge to lead the GOP in the next great contest.

Standard