Saturday, August 22, 2020

Week 17: Vote "for" instead of "against"

Week 17: Vote “for” instead of “against”

Discuss politics with nearly anyone today, and it becomes readily apparent that few people are actually planning to vote “for” any party or any candidate. Some people on the left do not seem enamored of Joe Biden, a doddering curmudgeon who spends his time trying to string together a coherent sentence and belittling potential voters who dare question his record. They are not voting for Joe Biden; they are voting against Donald Trump. Some people on the right do not seem enamored of Donald Trump, a caustic character who spends his time calling his opponents names on Twitter and bucking the political establishment. They are not voting for Donald Trump; they are voting against Joe Biden.

As for the two major political parties, I would suggest that there is relatively little difference between the two. Despite their rhetoric, both spend more and more money in a never-ending scheme to control more and more of our lives. 

In his book, “Rules for Radicals,” Saul Alinsky provocatively, and probably accurately, states, “That perennial question, ‘Does the end justify the means?” is meaningless as it stands; the real and only question regarding the ethics of means and ends is, and always has been, ‘Does this particular end justify this particular means?’”

It is shameful that the major political parties use all manner of scare tactics as means to influence us, the People, to accept government control over our lives, which is the ultimate end for them. What are these means? They say we will die without their involvement in the relationships between us and our doctors. They say we will live in squalor without their handouts, marketed as hand ups. They even sink to the foulest depths – convincing us that we are out to get one another, based on no more than the color of our skin, our gender, or any other number of superficial traits.

For the two major parties, We the People – you and I, are little more than pawns to establishment politicians.

My perception is that there are more people voting “for” Mr. Trump precisely because he is not part of the establishment. His policies and record to date, which have lifted the socioeconomic conditions of so many Americans, threaten the power of the establishment. The employment and wage rates for women and minorities, for example, were at all-time highs prior to the novel Coronavirus pandemic. The dysfunctional Veterans Administration health system is beginning to run more effectively and is including care choice for its patients. Affronts to the Natural Rights of Native Americans are being addressed. Things are getting done; things which the establishment politicians have discussed for years but have not remedied for fear of losing an issue with which to bait the American citizenry. The list of his administration’s accomplishments are not lost on Mr. Trump’s base.

What will be an important footnote in history, the novel Coronavirus, certainly has impacted the prosperity our nation was experiencing during the past few years. This, too, shall pass, and if our economic policy continues to tend toward laissez-faire conditions, we will likely be back on good footing quickly.

Mr. Biden’s record after 48 years as a career, establishment politician seems to demonstrate fewer tangible impacts on the lives of citizens, with the exception, of course, of higher taxes and greater government involvement in our lives. For example, he claims to be a lifelong proponent of Civil Rights, yet despite that, he claims that civil rights are as bad as ever. He claims to champion healthcare, yet despite the growth of Medicare and Medicaid since he began his political career, he’s among the first to decry our broken healthcare system.

On July 4, 1786, Massachusetts revolutionary Jonathan Loring Austin delivered a speech to the citizens of Boston on the anniversary of Independence Day. In his rousing speech, set in the now-legendary Faneuil Hall, he cautioned those assembled: “But as similar causes will always produce similar effects; so may we rest assured, that no nation will long continue free, after it has lost its virtue.” The preeminent virtue intimated by Mr. Austin to the good people of Boston was individual liberty.

As we think of whom to vote “for” in the upcoming election, consider who are the advocates of the “similar causes,” or means, as Alinsky would describe them? Mr. Biden’s failed policies are most assuredly likely to fail again. Mr. Trump’s divisive rhetoric is likely to reinforce the political discord that has existed for decades. 

Unless one falls into the small groups voting “for” Mr. Biden or Mr. Trump, I might suggest, kind reader, that it would feel much better to have a candidate for whom one could enthusiastically for “for” in this election. Furthermore, in a pragmatic sense, it would also produce favorable results for you, me and our fellow citizens.

May I introduce you to Jo Jorgensen, MBA, Ph.D. Dr. Jorgensen is the Libertarian candidate for President. [] She is an industrial and organizational psychologist, who lectures at Clemson University. She is a former employee of IBM, and now she owns her own business. She is a Classical Liberal. Unfortunately, the term “liberal” has been misappropriated by the political left (another Alinksy tactic) and used to mean something it etymologically does not mean.

In the simplest terms, Libertarianism – or Classical Liberalism – is a political approach to executing the social contract in which each individual is free to pursue his or her own interests and objectives, no matter what they are, as long as such pursuits do not adversely impact another individual’s ability to pursue his or her own interests and objectives. In other words, you are free to do whatever you want, as long as it doesn’t hurt someone else. [] 

In the Libertarian model, coercion is minimized. Government activity is strictly limited, and personal accountability and responsibility are restored. The abuse of the Constitution’s “general welfare” clause is remedied, as it is not carelessly interpreted to mean the government has a legitimate role in where one may receive healthcare, how much water one may use to flush a toilet, whom one may marry, etc., etc., etc.

Because, in a Libertarian model, there aren’t these and myriad other intrusions into our lives, there is no need for the expansive and costly departments and bureaus to administer them. Consequently, the need to coerce hard-earned money from you and me in the form of taxes is minimized.

Because, in a Libertarian model, government – and thereby power – is limited. Consequently, the need for politicians to divide and conquer the citizens is limited. At long last, you and I and our fellow Americans can live in harmony, without the power-hungry convincing us that we should hate one another. 

I propose that Classical Liberalism, viz. Libertarianism, is the model that will promote individual well-being and societal harmony. In this day and age, it is the anti-establishment choice.

Gentle reader, prior to casting your vote for one of the establishment parties, I pray your kind indulgence to follow the links above and to explore Dr. Jorgensen and the Libertarian Party. I think you’ll like what you read.

  Day 1: Vote your conscience   Over the past month, social media posts, tweets, chats, etc. have been replete with “vote as if…” admonition...