Food For Thought

"Labor unions would have us believe that they transfer income from rich capitalists to poor workers. In fact, they mostly transfer income from the large number of non-union workers to a small number of relatively well-off union workers." - Robert E. Anderson

Monday, April 4, 2011

My Job is Your Job is Our Job

The local, state and even national media spent quite a bit of time this winter on the budget battle in the state of Wisconsin. In a very short time, the 60's wanna-be's drummed up sit-ins, walk-outs, websites, chain letters and all of the other hallmarks of "activism". Hours of airtime and reams of pages were devoted to the small but vocal groups of protesters and their antics. They shouted their vitriolic rhetoric from every possible venue. They even went so far as to attempt to blackmail businesses into supporting them. And yet the majority remained silent (although, thankfully, in some instances effective).

What conservatives need to do is to take some lessons from the "symbolism over substance" left and heed the warnings. We can and must learn if we're to save the progress that was made this last November:

Cult of Personality
The left is all about "feelings", not logic. They are about "rights", not responsibilities. They peg their hopes and dreams on an anointed saviour who can do no wrong and then defend that person regardless of their glaring mistakes. Look at Marion Barry, Gordon Hintz, Bill Clinton and now President Obama.

Last fall, Conservatives stunned the liberal demagogues at the polls. People like Scott Walker were swept into office with a mandate from the people to cut spending. Scott Walker is not the messiah. He does not walk on water. And he can't do this by himself. The liberals are pulling out all the stops, using the state's courts to legislate from the bench. Like the liberals, the conservatives must "stand by their man". But unlike the liberals, conservatives cannot assume that now that "their man" is in, its all up to "him".

Government of the People
The liberals like to claim that they are for "the people". They claim to represent the downtrodden masses and the "little guy". They believe that they are right, no matter what the majority might say and that its their duty to make sure that their views are pushed through. When their views are challenged, they resort to tactics like legislation from the bench.

Conservatives believe in a government of the people, by the people and for the people. They believe in democracy and the will of the people. Conservatives showed the will of the people last November. But its not a single, one-time, isolated instance. The will of the people must be proven time and time again in each election and for each issue. That's the essence of a government of, by and for the people. Every election is a referendum on that principle. Like the liberals, conservatives must muster for every election and continue to show the will of the people.

Representative Government
Liberals believe that the masses are sheep who need to be lead. They elect leaders to make decisions for them. They believe in being governed, not in being represented.

Conservatives believe in self-government. Self-government means exactly that - you govern yourself. You elect people to represent your views, your will. Like the liberals, conservatives need leaders. But those leaders need continuing support and feedback. Without that, they are no longer representatives of the people.

To paraphase Ronald Reagan, from his "A Time for Choosing" speech:
"We will keep in mind and remember that Scott Walker has faith in us. He has faith that you and I have the ability and the dignity and the right to make our own decisions and determine our own destiny."

April 5th is another state election in Wisconsin. According to poll watchers, turnout is likely to be very low. People look at these spring elections as "why bother?" In the past, many patriots would have responded with words like "civic duty", but this time, there's a deeper reason. It's about grass-roots activism and continuing what's been started. Conservatives can do this, but, let's face it, liberals have a much longer track record with it. That's why the Tea Party movement has so confounded the left. The right just doesn't have the record of continuing grass-roots activism.

April 5th's election is more than just another judicial seat-filling exercise. It is a referendum on Conservatism. It is a rebuttal to the voiciferous left. It is a repudiation of legislation from the bench. It is a support for the continuation of the principles that were expounded last November. If you remain silent on the 5th, Conservatives, don't wake up on the 6th and wonder "what the hell happened?"

Government isn't just Scott Walker's job. It's the people's job. Every day. Every election. Every issue. Unlike the Runaway Fourteen, on the 5th I'll be doing my job. What will YOU be doing?

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