Rocker and Sage

The Quintessential Optimist and the Quintessential Cynic - Working Together to Build a Better America.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

The Mythology of Power

With few exceptions,historians have taken a positive view of the New Deal, which was of course formed in the depths of the Great Depression by Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Most of them have proclaimed him to be a great "savior of America" as a result. However, a little closer look from another perspective will reveal a different more sinister reality.

Roosevelt was a "born politician",which is to say he was devious, manipulative, and was not beyond stretching the truth when he felt it was necessary.His campaign promises-"to cut federal spending, balance the budget, maintain a sound currency, and rein in the overreaching power of the federal government sound very familiar, which they are, or have been for just about every other president in U.S. history, including the man current. Unfortunately, most Americans have come to believe that the legacy of a great president can be formed only under duress, as a diamond is formed from coal under pressure. In fact I believe that greatness means,in this case, almost exactly the opposite. As a result, we have found ourselves more often than not, having presidents who have felt the need to sensationalize their deeds to the point of exaggeration in respect to their acts, and in so doing, place the nation in unneccessary danger. In many instances these acts have been in violation of the Constitution, the very document that they have sworn to uphold.

F.D.R and the New Deal is a case in point, as is L.B.J's Great Society, as was the war in Vietnam, and presently the war in Iraq. All of these programs have lifted the ego-driven needs of their founders above the needs of the office that they were supposed to be serving to the point of doing damage rather than good to the cause that each swore to serve when elected.

A notable exception would be Grover Cleveland who, when viewed in the proper fashion, may have been one of the best of them all. How's that? What exactly was Cleveland's presidency noted for? There were no wars, no Great Depression, no lengthy periods of domestic, or foreign unrest to be calmed by presidential intervention Quite simply, Cleveland's greatness was found in doing what a president is supposed to do-keep out of the way and leave the business of running the country to the people! That is precisely what made him a great president. He kept the country at peace, respected the Constitution, fought to lower tariffs, and preserved the gold standard. Greatness such as this is rarely seen in a president, and badly needed in a time of super inflated egotism and media coverage to match. Greatness in an American president appears only in those who lead by keeping out of the way, by preserving the peace, by following the Constitution, and by striving to keep government out of the lives of the people as much as possible. In short, a great president is one who leads by following the lead of his people and who supports THEIR endeavors rather than his own!

As an oft used recourse to check the monster egos of these mean spirited little men, citizens can, and often do throw the bastards out at the next election. But getting rid of one set of these bastards isn't enough. We have been flinging them hither and yon for more than two centuries, and what do we have to show for it? What we have to show for it is two revolving factions of a one party dictatorship who masquerade as authentic alternatives to each other, the one specializing in crushing economic freedom, the other concentrating on crushing every other form of freedom. The result is a government for all of its references to freedom, justice, and equality that could be stacked up in fair comparison to any 21st century totalitarian state.

The really scary aspect of this reality is that few people in the United States today have either the vision, or the courage to live as free men and women, and are thus part of the problem instead of part of the solution.

The Revolution will not be televised.

Monday, January 09, 2006

Confirm Alito

A Republican, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, once said. "In fact, if you look at some of the quotes of his former law clerks, they don't believe that he'll overturn Roe v. Wade."

I hope he will. Sage hopes he won't. In either case, it's not really fair to place him in a position to issue a ruling in advance of a case being placed before him, as many Senate Democrats want to do. Ginsberg didn't have to; neither should Alito, and if Teddy Kennedy doesn't like it, he knows what he can do. I won't say it out loud here, 'cause this is also Sage's place and he would likely prefer I keep that level of passion over at my own blog.

The most important thing about Alito is his record as a judge. Most sources, even those coming from the Left, seem to point to him being an originalist, which is the POV both Sage and I come from.

This was arguably the most important promise made by President Bush, and although he has done some REALLY stupid things (expanding the welfare state and failing to properly secure our borders, just to name a couple), his ultimately having kept this promise will be the most positive part of his legacy. Congrats to conservatives for forcing him to keep it. It's for his own good, and, more importantly, for the good of our Constitution and our Nation.