Thursday, May 17, 2012

Shall We Live Free Or Oppresed? The Choice Is Ultimately Ours...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Liberty -vs- Tyranny

I found myself thinking about Leviathan (government) and oppression today. Confusing to me so I'm guessing it is the same for most working Americans trying to support their family in the immediate as well as formulating plans to achieve their dreams for a better tomorrow and ultimate retirement. Pretty common thoughts for most Americans don't you think?

Once upon a time, say approximately 235 years ago, Americans believed in self reliance, hard work, and that if you kept your nose to the grindstone anything was possible. Sometime later the aforementioned ethic became known as the Horatio Alger, Jr. theory. . The American spirit and work ethic that gave rise to the greatest and most prosperous nation on earth has somehow come under attack. An attack from two fronts. Both the progressive left as well as the reactionary right preach a dogma that carried out to their natural logical ends will result in oppression of mind and spirit to the dictates of an all powerful state.

Oppression of the people is easily achieved by a powerful state (central Leviathan government) when it is able to strike fear into the hearts of it's citizens. Propaganda, used by both the progressive left and reactionary right is the methodology employed to lure an uneducated populace into willing compliance. Whichever the ideology the tactics are the same.

Today America is more divided than ever in it's history, with the exception of our American Civil War. While it is easy to point the finger of blame to the President, the truth of the matter is both the party of the President and the opposition Republican party share the blame to one degree or the other.

As a Objectivist and advocate for laissez faire constitutional capitalism I have many difference with the progressive movement, most specifically in the area of fiscal responsibility and proper governance. However, having said this I realize for any society and economy as large as ours (the worlds largest) requires close scrutiny and political as well as business cooperation to insure that it continues thrive and expand. Only by continued economic expansion can a nation provide the infrastructure that will support its growing population and provide for the needs of its elderly.

The progressive left believes the way to achieve this is through gutting the military and increasing social spending and thus creating a deeper and expanded dependency on government. The reactionary right believes that the nation should increase the military budget in order to maintain worldwide dominance while starving the domestic programs in order to achieve this.

Both views are fundamentally incorrect, and both views will ultimately lead to the oppressive Leviathan government I have depicted in the graphics preceding this commentary.

My purpose for this post is NOT to convince anyone as to what the right or wrong approach is. Nor is it to criticize any particular view as I've certainly done so in the past and likely will do so in the future, as will many of those who take the time to read these comments. So be it. That is the point really.

The real take-away is this; educate yourself on the issues, formulate your own views based on the data available to you, question with boldness everything the progressive left as well as the reactionary right presents, accept nothing at face value, and ultimately vote your principles and your conscience. Because if you don't it is certain the two party system, which is really interested only in perpetuating it's control and power over us all, will use the weapon of public apathy and or ignorance to oppress us all.

That's my view. I welcome yours...

Via: Thought/Thinking


  1. Ya' know, just once, I wish you righties, and you are a righty, Les, would stop flagrantly lying about other people's beliefs and political positions.

    "The progressive left believes the way to achieve this (economic expansion) is through gutting the military and increasing social spending and thus creating a deeper and expanded dependency on government."

    This is LIE. It simply IS NOT TRUE. No real, serious progressive beliefs this.

    Yes, most progressives would say we need to rein in the military, but this is only tangentially related to economic expansion, and economic expansion is not the main reason to do so. The most important reason to rein in the military (not "gutting" it, a childishly simplistic misrepresentation) is as Ike warned all those years ago:

    "This conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence -- economic, political, even spiritual -- is felt in every city, every State house, every office of the Federal government. We recognize the imperative need for this development. Yet we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our toil, resources and livelihood are all involved; so is the very structure of our society.

    In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the militaryindustrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.

    We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together."

    We understand the need for a powerful military, and most of us also believe that American military power can and should be used for good. But what we have now is ridiculous.


    1. Ya know jmj, I am a CLASSICAL LIBERAL, so I guess that means I'm a righty.

      And yes I am right.

  2. As Ike also warned in that speech:

    "Crises there will continue to be. In meeting them, whether foreign or domestic, great or small, there is a recurring temptation to feel that some spectacular and costly action could become the miraculous solution to all current difficulties. A huge increase in newer elements of our defense; development of unrealistic programs to cure every ill in agriculture; a dramatic expansion in basic and applied research -- these and many other possibilities, each possibly promising in itself, may be suggested as the only way to the road we wish to travel."

    He's being quite consistent here, something today's more hawkish politicians rarely are. He's saying that putting too many eggs in one basket is always a bad idea, something most progressives would agree with, and hence proving your take on our position unrepresentative.

    the same can be said for "social spending." Most progressives believe that social spending (the welfare state, the institutional infrastructure) do again tangentially grow the economy (any economist worth his salt would have to admit that), after all, the numbers don't lie. Public investment in education, housing, medical, and food assistance, create a net gain in the GDP, but that doesn't mean that every investment in every aspect of those areas has a net gain. Just in general. Again, it's baskets and eggs.

    Just the same, most progressives agree that simply reducing the size and scope of the military and social spending in and of themselves will do enough to solidly expand the economy for all, and can even hurt it in some ways.

    Remember, the military IS a sort of Keynesian enterprise. It can be thought of as a welfare state, as social spending, because in many ways it IS. Take the education, pension, and job security benefits out of the picture, and that .4% of the population that has anything to do with direct service the military would probably drop to about .1%.

    And the military can certainly be called as massive corporate welfare system! Take the billions and billions of dollars of military contracts out of the picture, and see how many politicians fight for more military spending! Not many.

    But there remains that sort of quasi-progressive aspect to the military - the jobs, the educations, the projects. So no progressive would suggest that reducing the size and scope of the military will in and of itself be a great boon to economic expansion. Rather, reining it is would be smart fiscal conservatism, if anything.

    Yes, these two initiatives, demilitarization and social spending, can and would help to expand the economy in some ways, but there is much more to the picture - like fiscal responsibility to keep the dollar strong, ending the dual mission of the Fed to pit employment against inflation, universal healthcare, regional rather than local government services dispersal, de-privatization of vital services, reigning in the Police State, and most important of all: INFRASTRUCTURE INVESTMENT.

    That's what we really believe.

    And remember this as well: If you are fool enough to believe the private sector does not have the propensity to oppress, then you are historically illiterate, and boy 'o boy, do I have a bridge to sell you!


    1. I dd not sat the private did not have a ability or propensity to oppress.

      And you, as well as your modern & present day fellow progressives (at least far flaming left) have been attempting to sell a bridge to nowhere for years.

  3. The common denominator you identify is government. Left, right, whatever, too much of it is tyranny.

    1. Perhaps jmj simply missed that salient point.

    2. No, Silver, that is a simplistic assertion that is not necessarily true. Period. It's kinda stupid, really. It is not some arbitrary size of government that creates tyranny. You can have very small governmental departments that can be much more tyrannical than very large departments!

      You guys are thinking simplistically, and projecting that simplistic logic on others.


    3. No jmj, capitalism must be balanced with a proper understanding of what RATIONAL CAPITALISM means. You Jersey are advocating a bastardized version of capitalism without even a clue as to what rational self interest means let alone what rational capitalism mean.

      I will give you this... What passes as capitalism in America today is NOT a rational capitalism and as as such does not support rational self interest.

  4. I think Jersey has a dirty conscience about being a progressive. The guy is obviously an America-loving capitalist himself, yet he throws in ideologically with grubby socialists who mistrust us with our liberties, worship big government, and hate capitalism. The dichotomy must be causing a great strain.

    1. I believe your analysis is correct. I'm sure jmj will in due time realize this for himself.

    2. It is no great strain to understand that capitalism must be balanced by socialism, both for the sake of successful capitalism and a stable and happy society. Most educated people throughout the world understand that, and they also understand that no simplistic ideology will strike that delicate and ever-evolving balance.


    3. jmj, Note my comment above.

      By the way, who ever said government (or capitalism) should be responsible for creating a "Happy Society?" As I believe ole Abe (the statist) Lincoln once said... people are aa happy as they make their minds up to be. Or something very close.

      Don't know what you're smoking but I gotta get me some.

    4. Cristopher Hernandez SifontesTue May 29, 12:50:00 AM EDT

      Jersey, capitalism should absolutely not be balanced or in fact in anyway mixed with socialism.
      I live in the United Kingdom, and I tell you - our socialist economic policies that have long supported an entitlement society and a bloated welfare state are what has had the biggest impact on our debts and so prevented us from being as competitive in world markets thus hindering our ability to function as the great capitalist society on which the sustainability of our future lies.
      The USA has a chance here to get rid of the financial oppression led by its ever-growing government right now.
      Of course, in socialist societies like Venezuela a large majority of the population is happy but that is because, just as in communism, their aspirations to be better at every opportunity have been thwarted by a dependency on government meaning then that their happiness is limited to a level that everyone can achieve equally but at the same time then oppressing the people's will and right to pursue their happiness.
      Freedom can only be fully achieved in capitalism and capitalism alone. People can and must dictate their own happiness and shouldn't have to rely on any mixture of government (or government at all for that matter) to be happy.

  5. I agree 100% with your assertion that this nation hasn't been this divided since the Civil War. Question is, how is the extreme polarization along so many lines going to end?

    1. I wish I had the answer to your question Hack, I really do. Perhaps when the extremes in both the far left and far right end their polarizing influences (designed to corrupt the less educated) the nation will again become one.

      Not holding my breath, but doing my part as best I can.

  6. Les, you keep using terms like "rational capitalism" and "rational self-interest" but you're not going to convince me of your arguments with such terms.

    So, then, what is "rational?"

    Well then it's what? Natural law? Eugenics?

    WTF man!

    There're no arguments there worth having.

    You do not personally possess the answer to mankind's questions, and nor does anyone I know, including myself, of course (in case you wondered).

    Ayn Rand suggested we should live in a new and bolder capitalistic world.

    I would suggest that thousands of years of history would suggest we live in a more communal, interdependent world.

    And by the way, this is just by degrees. I do not want to live in a communist society. No smart person would.


    1. Glad you would not want to live in a communist society. Actually never thought you would.

      I do not want to live in a socialist society either. Unfortunately I realize that I do and that society in general is getting more expectant of big brother Leviathan government taking care of its every need and want. Just as David Brooks so aptly pointed out in his column yesterday. Like below.

      While I have some differences with him on this they are minor. Our nation would do well to consider his very salient points.

  7. As long as the Reaganites continue bow to the God of Production and the Krugmanites to the God of Consumption, I frankly don't see all that much light at the end of this tunnel. Hopefully, the 2 damn sides can reign in the lunatic fringe (folks like Gohmert and Bachmann on the right and Waters and Frank on the left) and somehow cut a deal before the plaster starts to peel.

    1. Didn't the "Reaganites" advocate supply, as in supply side economics rather than the good ole law of supply and demand, as in demand preceding supply? I suppose that by increasing supply that is not necessarily driven by demand a short term gain is realized with longer term negative consequences.

      Production of goods should be the direct result of market demand resulting in creating the balanced supply required to meet the demands of the market. Or something like that anyway.

      There has been way to much artificiality going around for far too long.

    2. That's not the fault of government, but corporations.
      So is anything the government does for all the people socialism?

    3. It is the fault of government, with a little help from some corporations corporations.

      But I know in your life business is the root of all evil.

  8. "Production of goods should be the direct result of market demand resulting in creating the balanced supply required to meet the demands of the market. Or something like that anyway."
    Government has nothing to do with private corporations production. Corporations decide what production should be, to fill demand.
    "But I know in your life business is the root of all evil."
    Of course that's not true, but an easy, idiotic shot because you cannot answer. You are consistent at not answering questions about the stuff you proclaim.

    1. I fully realize that government has nothing to do with private corporation production. But it is pulling your strings.

      As to idiotic shots, well, I can only base my conclusion on the words you type. So, what about idiotic again.

      My last response to you on this thread.

  9. capitalism must be balanced by socialism

    What a stupid comment. Right up there with birth must be balanced by murder, a good meal must be balanced by hunger, success must be balanced by failure...

    Most important to socialistic state-worshiping progressives like Jersey, out freedoms must be "balanced" by government oppression.

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