I'LL be going to dinner with some liberal friends tonight. And every time I do that I think of the things I'd like to ask them, but am too polite to do.
Can liberals really stand by in silence as the President of the United States arbitrarily writes the law, on Obamacare, on immigration, without benefit of Congress? Would not liberals be tearing up the carpet if a Republican president were doing anything remotely similar? Do liberals not understand how their silence enrages conservatives who think of, or hope for an America where both sides of the political divide recognize the need to make their own representatives obey the law and respect the constitution?
Can liberals really sit back in silence when partisan Democratic prosecutors in Wisconsin conduct a years-long investigation into the relations between conservative political committees and Governor Scott Walker in the hope of finding something, anything with which to hang on him? Do liberals think that this could never happen to them?
And what about the criminal indictment of Governor Perry in Texas for threatening to veto an appropriation for a public integrity office in Austin? Well, OK, a number of liberal commentators actually have objected to this.
Look I get what is going on here. Your ordinary rank-and-file liberal has never heard about these matters. They are just not the sort of thing that gets liberal commentators all riled up; they are not the kind of thing that publicity-seeking liberal activists are interested in.
So if a rank-and-file liberal hears about any of these issues they just shrug and forget about it. Hey, it's not their ox getting gored.
But you can be sure that once we get a Republican president in 2017 with a Republican Congress my liberal friends will be once again sensitive to the slightest appearance of impropriety and corruption, and their concern will by amplified by a hundred journalists and a thousand "activist" organizations.
OK, OK. It's what I call the Incoming Missile Syndrome. Everyone responds and leaps for cover when the incoming missiles start raining in on their firebase. But when you are sending mortar rounds out to some enemy trench half a mile away, who cares? They had it coming.
There are, of course, maxims that deal with this sort of thing. "Let sleeping dogs lie." "Do as you would be done by." The point is that if you poke your political opponents you may find too late that you have provoked them into a political rage that will end up hurting your side more than it disables the other side.
Or maybe not. They say that the attacks on the Koch Brothers are bearing fruit. Would-be conservative contributors are said to be skittish because they don't want to attract attention to themselves.
But I suppose the ruling class has always tried to intimidate the opposition. Nothing changes unless there are people who can look back after the revolution and declare how they "boldly did outdare / The dangers of the time."
But I'd still like it if my liberal friends actually had a single independent thought in their NYT/NPR prompted minds.
YOU'VE probably heard vaguely about the Rotherham 1400 in England. How "Asian" (read immigrant Pakistani) men ran a rape operation that preyed on underage girls for years right under the noses of city officials who did nothing for fear of being labeled racists. Here's the BBC report. This flap has occurred in the wake of a report that identified the coverups going back into the 1990s. And why ...
THE thing about a chap like Warren Buffett, described by some as the world's foremost stock picker, is that he has to be careful. A rich billionaire has to keep his friends close and his enemies closer. Because billions. Everyone wants a piece of Warren, including the tax man. So Warren Buffett has sailed a very clever course during the Obama administration, as Andrew B. Wilson reminds us. ...
I have said it before, and I say it again. The reason I voted for Barack Obama in 2008 with all the kiddies was because I felt that Democrats needed to own foreign policy. Democrats needed to be in charge and experience for themselves what the US needed to do with respect to the forces in the world. Otherwise they'd just play politics like they did from the day after 9/11. Remember? The ...
Download latest e-book draft here.
A New Manifesto
A spectre is haunting the liberal elitethe spectre of conservatism.
The Crisis of the Administrative State
It wasnt supposed to be like this.
Government and the Technology of Power
If you scratch a social reformer, you will likely discover a plan for more government.
Business, Slavery, and Trust
Business is all about trust and relationship.
Humanity's Big Problem: Freebooters and Freeloaders
The modern welfare state encourages freeloaders.
The Bonds of Faith
No society known to anthropology or history lacked religion.
A Critique of Social Mechanics
The problem with human society reduced to system.
The Paradox of Individualism
Is individualism the gospel of selfishness or something else?
From Multitude to Civil Society
The larger the government, the smaller the society.
The Answer is Civil Society
In between the separated powers.
The Greater Separation of Powers
If you want to limit power then you must limit power.
Conservatism Three by Three
Conservatism, political, economics, and cultural.
The Culture of Involvement
Imagining lives without the welfare state
The Poor Without the Welfare State
Can the poor thrive without the welfare state?
The Middle Class Without The Welfare State
How would the middle class live without all those middle-class entitlements?
From Freeloaders to Free Givers
The path to the future lies through moral movements.
The Real Meaning of Society
Broadening the horizon of cooperation in the last best hope of man on earth.
Andrew Coulson, Market Education
How universal literacy was achieved before government education
Carl Kaestle, Pillars of the Republic
How we got our education system
James Tooley, The Miseducation of Women
How the feminists wrecked education for boys and for girls
James Tooley, Reclaiming Education
How only a market in education will provide opportunity for the poor
E.G. West, Education and the State
How education was doing fine before the government muscled in
Hernando De Soto, The Mystery of Capital
How ordinary people in the United States wrote the law during the 19th century
F. A. Hayek, Law Legislation and Liberty, Vol 1
How to build a society based upon law
Henry Maine, Ancient Law
How the movement of progressive peoples is from status to contract
John Zane, The Story of Law
How law developed from early times down to the present
James Bartholomew, The Welfare State We're In
How the welfare state makes crime, education, families, and health care worse.
David Beito, From Mutual Aid to the Welfare State
How ordinary people built a sturdy social safety net in the 19th century
David Green, Before Beveridge: Welfare Before the Welfare State
How ordinary people built themselves a sturdy safety net before the welfare state
Theda Skocpol, Diminished Democracy
How the US used to thrive under membership associations and could do again
David Stevenson, The Origins of Freemasonry
How modern freemasonry got started in Scotland
David Aikman, Jesus in Beijing
How Christianity is booming in China
Finke & Stark, The Churching of America, 1776-1990
How the United States grew into a religious nation
Robert William Fogel, The Fourth Great Awakening and the Future of Egalitarianism
How progressives must act fast if they want to save the welfare state
David Martin, Pentecostalism: The World Their Parish
How Pentecostalism is spreading across the world
After a year of President Obama most Americans understand that the nation is on the wrong track. But how do we find the right track? Americans knew thirty years ago that liberalism was a busted flush. Yet Reaganism and Bushism seemed to be less than the best answer.
But where can we turn? Where are the thinkers and activists of the old days? Where do we find the best ideas? And how do we persuade our present ruling class to loosen its grip on power so that we can move the locomotive of state back onto the right track?
With all of our problems it seems like the worst of times.
In fact, this is the best of times. Under the radar a generation of great thinkers have been figuring out what went wrong and conjuring up visions of a better future. This book, "An American Manifesto: Life After Liberalism" is an introduction to their ideas, and to the great future that awaits an America willing to respond to their call.
Although this book is addressed to all Americans, conservative, moderate, and liberal, and looks to a nation that transcends our present partisan divide, I must tell you that liberals will have the most difficulty with the book. The reason is simple. I am asking liberals to give up a lot of the power they have amassed in the last century. But we are all Americans, and we must all give up something for the sake of the greater good.
I am Christopher Chantrill and I am writing this book in full view. I'll be blogging on the process and the ideas, and I'll be asking you, dear readers, to help. Read the blog. Read the articles as they come out on American Thinker and ponder over the draft chapters here on this site.
Then send me your reactions, your thoughts, and your comments. You will help more than you know.
The incentive that impels a man to act is always some uneasiness...
But to make a man act [he must have]
the expectation that purposeful behavior has the power to remove
or at least to alleviate the felt uneasiness.
Ludwig von Mises, Human Action
But I saw a man yesterday who knows a fellow who had it from a chappie
that said that Urquhart had been dipping himself a bit recklessly off the deep end.
Dorothy L. Sayers, Strong Poison
At first, we thought [the power of the West] was because you had more powerful guns than we had. Then we thought it was because you had the best political system. Next we focused on your economic system. But in the past twenty years, we have realized that the heart of your culture is your religion: Christianity.
David Aikman, Jesus in Beijing
[In the] higher Christian churches... they saunter through the liturgy like Mohawks along a string of scaffolding who have long since forgotten their danger. If God were to blast such a service to bits, the congregation would be, I believe, genuinely shocked. But in the low churches you expect it every minute.
Annie Dillard, Holy the Firm
Civil Societya complex welter of intermediate institutions, including businesses, voluntary associations, educational institutions, clubs, unions, media, charities, and churchesbuilds, in turn, on the family, the primary instrument by which people are socialized into their culture and given the skills that allow them to live in broader society and through which the values and knowledge of that society are transmitted across the generations.
Francis Fukuyama, Trust
In England there were always two sharply opposed middle classes, the academic middle class and the commercial middle class. In the nineteenth century, the academic middle class won the battle for power and status... Then came the triumph of Margaret Thatcher... The academics lost their power and prestige and... have been gloomy ever since.
Freeman Dyson, The Scientist as Rebel
Conservatism is the philosophy of society. Its ethic is fraternity and its characteristic is authority the non-coercive social persuasion which operates in a family or a community. It says we should....
Danny Kruger, On Fraternity
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