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Sunday, October 28, 2012

The Ohioan: President Grant & the Republic


            In an interview given on August 29, 1877 to curious Europeans during his trip overseas, President Ulysses S. Grant explained his view of Americans:

You can always depend upon the good sense of the people of the United States.  They believe in the Republic.  Their flag is to the fore, with strong arms behind it always, and they are sentimental, loyal and brave.  They will never elect a high official except upon a common sense basis.  For that reason I believe – the republican and democratic parties of late being so evenly divided – that the people will be compelled to vote in large majority for the republican candidate, no matter who he may be, because the democrats will do some silly thing that will drive the thinking people from their ranks at the last moment.[1] 

Could Grant have known that just over100 years into the future, his words would resonate with Americans struggling under the worst democratic administration in United States history?  To be sure, in 2008 Americans elected a Democrat, Barack H. Obama, to become President of the United States.  Some Americans would argue today that Obama has successfully taken America further away from the “Republic” Grant once envisioned.  For example, our enemies who once feared us now freely attack and kill Americans abroad because they consider us powerless.  Our currency has lost the strength it once enjoyed; instead, we now live under the heavy burden of debt so enormous that it will continue to affect our children in the future. 

            If re-elected, the future of America under this President would only become worse.  For instance, instead of enjoying a free market enterprise system that would encourage competition and growth, ideas that once built this nation, Americans will need to share their wealth or pay penalties.  Americans will need to forfeit their right to choose basic needs such as healthcare and education because Obama will continue to encroach upon our liberties as he has already done for the last 4 years.  Indeed, Americans will do well to remember that under the Obama administration, the only “pursuit of happiness” which will occur in America will be at the disposal of the President himself.    

            As we edge closer towards Election Day, we must consider our future and choose our President wisely.  Are we using our “common sense,” as Grant suggested, in voting for a candidate who best represents our interests at home and abroad?  Are we voting for someone who carries our “flag to the fore, with strong arms behind it always?” On the other hand, are we voting for a leader who bows his head to lies and apologizes to our enemies?  Does he watch casually as our enemies tear down and burn our flag even as they kill our brethren?  Does he have the courage and character to accept responsibility for his failures in leading the nation or is he quick to blame others around him for his shortcomings?  Indeed, does he place the needs of Americans before his own selfish pursuits? 

            Careful analysis of the last 4 years shows that the democrats have had the opportunity to try many “silly thing[s]” and given another chance, their silliness will only result in more troubling times for all Americans.  Now is the time to rise up from our “ranks” and make a clear choice.  President Grant once called us the “thinking people” and showed a high level of faith in Americans.  Now, we the people must put that faith into practice for ourselves, our children, and for the future of our national Republic.



[1] Ulysses S. Grant, The Papers of Ulysses S. Grant, Volume 28:  November 1, 1876-September 30, 1878 (Carbondale:  Southern Illinois University Press, 2005), url:  http://digital.library.msstate.edu/collections/document.php?CISOROOT=/USG_volume&CISOPTR=26263.
 

 
           

Friday, October 26, 2012

Women's Sexuality & the Great Obama Campaign

 
           The Obama campaign reached a new low today with their latest advertisement meant to persuade young people to vote for the Obama ticket.  In this advertisement, Lena Denham discusses her “first time” and encourages other (presumably) women to vote for Obama because he is a “great guy” who is also “beautiful,” and “someone who really cares about and understands women.”  Complete with sexual innuendos, the advertisement is lewd and offensive to the extreme.  For someone who supposedly “cares about women,” it is sickening to see that President Obama will use any means possible just to win a few votes. 
            Some people may think the advertisement is perfectly acceptable, but precisely what kind of message is the President sending to young voters through such disdainful advertising?  In keeping with his image of the “suave” and “hip” President, he unashamedly allows the use of suggestive language to promote his campaign objective.  This “great guy” neglects to discuss the heavy debt that college students carry and the lack of jobs available to those who have graduated, but uses students freely to promote his agenda. 
            The distasteful advertisement used by the Obama campaign should be offensive to all American women.  Instead, many women find it liberating and support Obama anyway.  It is rather shameful that the women who defend Obama’s campaign are the very same women who would scream sexism if Mr. Romney used the same methods for his campaign.  Obviously, the Obama campaign feels that applying a double standard is completely acceptable whether in regards to gender, race, or class issues as long as it comes from within their folds.  Unfortunately, whether or not American women choose to see the advertisement for what it is, a shameful tactic to promote Obama’s election ticket, rather than to benefit women’s rights, is quite another matter.     


Monday, October 22, 2012

"Join or Die"

 
            In 1800, Americans confronted a unique dilemma.  The heated competition between Alexander Hamilton’s Federalists and Thomas Jefferson’s Republicans had reached a new height in the State of New York.  Under Aaron Burr’s cunning manipulations, the Republican Party in New York underwent extreme changes to the surprise of many Federalists.  Historian Susan Dunn notes that despite the fact that Burr was involved with the Republicans, he “left little evidence of his political convictions or principles.”[1]  Suffice it to say that by the time Burr had worked his “magic” in New York, the results were astounding:  Republicans were far ahead of their Federalist rivals. 
            Burr’s hard work paid off and he became Jefferson’s running mate in the election of 1800, but this did not stop his adversary Hamilton from working diligently to find a way to block Burr’s machinations.  In a letter written to John Jay, Hamilton urgently requested:
 I shall not be supposed to mean that anything ought to be done which integrity will forbid---but merely that the scruples of delicacy and propriety, as relative to a common course of things, ought to yield to the extraordinary nature of the crisis…The reasonable    part of the world will I believe approve it.  They will see it as a proceeding out of the common course but warranted by the particular nature of the Crisis and the great cause of social order.[2]        
Unfortunately, for the Federalists it was too late to change the outcome of the election.  The Republicans had a decided victory over the Federalists with Jefferson and Burr leading the way.  Jefferson took it upon himself to mark Burr as the Vice President by writing a congratulatory note to him in December of 1800.  In this letter, Jefferson promised Burr a position of authority upon his inauguration.[3]   Burr, at the time at least, seemed grateful and willing to oblige with Jefferson’s plans.  While the clash between the two parties was complete, anxieties over the Jefferson/Burr ticket were just becoming clear.  It was obvious that both men had won with equal electoral votes but only one could become the President.  More importantly, according to the Constitution, the House of Representatives would break the tie and select the next President of the United States.
            The Federalists, always afraid of Jefferson’s plans, frantically tried to garner support for Burr in an effort to offset his opponent’s possible win.  Hamilton abhorred the idea of any party supporting Burr and stated disgustedly, “that if the Party Shall by supporting Mr Burr as President adopt him for their official Chief---I shall be obliged to consider myself as an isolated man.”[4]  Hamilton argued that although he felt Jefferson was “crafty” and a shameless “hypocrite,” he was not “an enemy to the power of the Executive” or “capable of being corrupted.”[5]  Both Hamilton and Jefferson understood Burr’s personality very well.  Burr was notoriously selfish and only had his own best interests at heart.  Historian Gordon Wood notes that to both men Burr “violated everything they had thought the American Revolution had been about.”[6]
            By 1800-1801, Hamilton had suffered personal heartache to last a lifetime.  The death of his eldest and most beloved son, Philip Hamilton, in a duel had rendered him a broken man.  Furthermore, after the exposure of the “Reynolds Affair” in 1797, his political life had taken a battering and suffered gravely as well.  Yet, in a way only Hamilton could, he worked energetically to bring the Federalists together and stressed that, “If there be a man in the world I ought to hate it is Jefferson.  With Burr I have always been personally well.  But the public good must be paramount to every private consideration.”[7] 
            On February 17, 1801, Thomas Jefferson became the third President of the United States of America.  On March 4, 1801, in one of the most riveting speeches in our nation’s history, Jefferson declared:
But every difference of opinion is not a difference of principle. We have called by different names brethren of the same principle. We are all Republicans, we are all Federalists.  If there be any among us who would wish to dissolve this Union or to change its republican form, let them stand undisturbed as monuments of the safety with which error of opinion may be tolerated where reason is left free to combat it.[8]
Clearly, by combining their efforts and joining hands with each other, Jefferson and Hamilton, indeed the Federalists and the Republicans, unified the nation and uplifted the objective of the American Revolution in one clean sweep. 
            As we head to the poll booth this election year, it would do us all good to remember the sentiments behind the American Revolution.  Today, as it was in the election of 1800, the mayhem of party politics remains present.  The question we must ask ourselves then is not which Party to vote for, but which candidate best preserves the true meaning behind the beliefs of “We the People.”  As with Hamilton and Jefferson, perhaps it is time that we “join or die” for those principles which celebrate our fundamental beliefs, for in the end we are all Republicans, we are all Democrats, we are all Tea Partiers, we are all Libertarians, and indeed we are all Americans.              





[1] Susan Dunn, Jefferson’s Second Revolution:  The Election Crisis of 1800 and the Triumph of Republicanism (Boston:  New York, 2004), 179.


[2] Alexander Hamilton, “An Electoral Stratagem,” in Hamilton Writings, ed. Joanne B. Freeman (New York:  Literary Classics of the United States, Inc., 2001), 923-924.


[3] Thomas Jefferson, “The Anas. 1791-1806 Selections,“ in Jefferson:  Autobiography, Notes on the State of Virginia, Public and Private Papers, Addresses, Letters, ed. Merrill D. Peterson (New York:  Literary Classics of the United States, Inc., 1984), 692.


[4] Alexander Hamilton, “Burr Has ‘No Fixed Theory’ To James A. Bayard,” Hamilton Writings, 977.


[5] Ibid., 978.


[6] Gordon Wood, Empire of Liberty:  A History of the Early Republic, 1789-1815 (Oxford:  Oxford University Press, 2009), 284.


[7] Alexander Hamilton, “Jefferson Over Burr to Gouverneur Morris,” Hamilton Writings, 972.


[8] The Avalon Project, “Thomas Jefferson First Inaugural Address,” avalon.law.yale.edu, last modified 2008, http://avalon.law.yale.edu/19th_century/jefinau1.asp.

"Ain't I a Woman?"


 

            Last week the social media site Twitter was ablaze with calculating comments made by Hollywood starlet Eva Longoria. Longoria, who has long supported the Obama campaign, busily tweeted and re-tweeted against presidential candidate Mitt Romney. Caught in her own web of deception, Longoria later claimed that she simply used “Twitter as a platform for all Americans and their opinions."[1] Longoria’s refusal to see that many Americans, especially American women, deplore the idea of shallow celebrity women taking a stand for us all, only indicates the ever-growing gap between tinsel town and the real world.

            Women throughout the country find this umbrella term – all - used by celebrities such as Longoria, amongst others, most offensive. Sorry to shatter the imaginary world Longoria seems to exist in, but some of us are perfectly happy in cooking dinner for our families, attending church, volunteering to help in our communities, and serving our country through the armed forces. We work hard each day to raise our children with impeccable morals and values even in the face of adversity, which is continuously spewed forth from liberated women who shamelessly pander to rules, set by Hollywood. Nevertheless, every other day there is a new campaign advertisement from the Obama administration encouraging us to use our “lady parts” to vote or “warning” us of the perils of voting for Mr. Romney (lest we lose our medical benefits of getting early cancer screenings). How Longoria thinks she is helping all American women by deliberately misstating facts is beyond comprehension for this humble American woman.

            Fortunately, for those of us unwilling to participate in the all category, talented and admirable women are stating the facts each day. Author, Laura Ingraham states in her book, Shut Up & Sing, that “America is not great because of its dot-com millionaires, or its Hollywood starlets, or its brightest intellectuals. America is great because of the millions of so called “average” Americans who get up every day and do the best they can to build a better world for themselves and their children.”[2] This remarkable point would serve liberal women well if they only took notice. Celebrity women such as Longoria often make an incorrect assumption that they understand the average American woman. The problem with such a mentality is that we can see through the fakery.

            Author and blogger Michelle Malkin, who recently challenged Longoria on the validity of her “facts” about Romney stated that: “The real issue with “dialogue”-seeking Longoria, who refused to answer any of my questions on Twitter, is that she is a phony spokeswoman for American women outside the Hollywood-D.C.-Manhattan bubble.”[3] Amazingly, Longoria avoided discussing her version of the “facts” with Malkin most of the day, rescued only when fellow liberal starlets clustered together and energetically patted Longoria’s back for standing up for all women. Right. To be sure, the apologies came later when Longoria cunningly blamed her “malfunctioning” Twitter account for the deplorable re-tweets against Mr. Romney. Is it not just like the liberal-minded folks to find someone or something to blame for their mistakes? It would be quite refreshing to see them take responsibility for their own actions for once. Alas, we can only hope.

            Longoria’s fight against Mr. Romney’s campaign by deliberately turning facts to suit her own purposes (or more specifically, the purposes of the Obama campaign) is a strong indication of how liberals have used people (women in this case) as their own personal puppet. This election has become one of the most divisive of any other elections in recent history. To think that this election is simply about party affiliation, racial prejudice, and class war is an understatement. To be sure, there is plenty of that nonsense going around, but what is obvious now more than ever is that this election has brought a war between American women. For the conservative women, it is a time to awaken and roar. Indeed, many of us abhor the idea of liberals speaking on our behalf. It is unacceptable to most of us when starlets put words in our mouths. Frankly, we are tired of the constant pushing, stomping, and shoving of our values.  This land is ours also and as such, we have rights as well. The time has come to stand up and break the shackles set upon us by bullies whether they hide behind the liberal label, or the Hollywood sign.  I, for one, shun the life that would make me the scapegoat for women such as Longoria who continue to denigrate the principles, which I hold dear to me. It is unimportant to me if people ridicule me for asserting myself here because in our great nation, my opinion counts as well, after all “Ain’t I a Woman” too?






[1]Eva Longoria, tweet October 18, 2012, Twitter.

[2] Laura Ingraham, Shut Up & Sing, Washington D. C.: Regnery Publishing, Inc., 2003, 338.

[3] Michelle Malkin, http://michellemalkin.com/ (accessed October 21, 2012).