The Adam Political Weblog - 2023<br>

     Welcome to my attempt to keep a weblog, a running sort-of diary on my own web page. I don't like to put political posts on social media like Facebook or Twitter. I feel there are political points I want to communicate to my community of followers that aren't up to the level of writing a full page. So here it is.

     Link to the most-recent entry at the bottom.

     Anyhow, let's see how it goes.

    

2023 January 1 - Donald Trump paid no tax

     When my friend had cancer I like to think his first thought was that he wanted to get better rather than he was angry that there were other people who didn't have cancer. I also like to think that he didn't think that somehow more people having cancer makes the world a better place.

     A friend of mine pays income taxes. He should no more pay income taxes to the federal government than he should have cancer and it does the world no more good to have one more taxpayer than to have one more person with cancer.

     Then my income-tax-riddled friend found out that Donald Trump managed to avoid the cancer of income tax for several years. He didn't take a salary as President of the United States and I would imagine he lost a lot of money on his investments during the economic death spiral of the Obama years while my friend was still paid his salary. So it is well within the letter and spirit of the law that my friend paid tax and Donald Trump didn't. But my friend was angry, "Why should a rich person like Donald Trump not pay tax?" It's the same as bemoaning the cancer-free status of healthy people when one is cancer-ridden himself.

     In short, the tax code neither my friend nor Donald Trump had anything to do with writing spared Donald and afflicted my friend.

     Still, my friend was inconsolable in his rage.

2023 January 2 - The stolen election is a dead issue.

     A conservative-Republican buddy of mine, call him Sam, insists that stolen elections, national in 2020 and Arizona in 2022, are somehow yesterday's news. People don't want to hear it anymore. Donald Trump has spent his popularity raising awareness of that and, my friend says, would not win in 2024 as he did in 2020 by a landslide.

     Sam may be right. There is only so much energy and enthusiasm people have, even when they feel as strongly as they do now, even when we're so divided as we are now. The tactic of stealing the election and playing dumb works as Americans I meet today have as little interest in the election scandals as they do of the Reichstag burning by the National Socialists in 1933.

     Given how bleak the future is likely to be with Democrats in complete control, and I have to figure they gave up the House of Representatives as part of a larger plan, methinks it's important to have an election process. The alternative is guns and shooting and revolution, not usually a useful way of getting good things done. Joe Biden pointed out the liberal Democrats have fighter 'planes and all the other stuff from the United States military while the conservative Republicans have about one hundred million armed and angry Americans.

     We'll see how it goes, but it's not looking pretty.

    

2023 January 7.

A friend of mine pointed this out to me. Doesn't it look like the pianist Stephen Scott (on my 1994 Verve-jazz calendar) is Nazi-saluting the swastika on my wall?
     I have a swastika on my wall. It's not because I'm a Nazi or a sympathizer or a socialist. When I spent a couple of weeks in
India during 2007 September I was given two gifts, a door knocker and a twisted-cross symbol of good luck and prosperity, and both of these are displayed proudly in my home today. I recognize the meaning and the sentiment, not that somebody else thousands of miles away used the same symbol to mean something terrible.

     I'll point out a friend of mine did display the Nazi swastika deliberately just a few years ago. I was visiting his hangar and he was restoring a German airplane from the second World War. The markings on the original airplane were Nazi markings and he was faithful to its original condition, not to the political climate it came from. When he asked if I were concerned or offended by it I said, "absolutely not," as I understood he was rebuilding an object and not promoting a political point of view.

     So now I turn to a liberal-left friend Dawn who promoted Black Lives Matter (BLM) in spite of their racist, violent, anti-Jewish attitudes. She insisted that Black lives do matter and that's what was important to her. When I pointed out that names don't always represent the thing itself, that point was clearly lost on her.

     I didn't even try to explain that Universal Health Care doesn't give health care universally, that a Troubled Assets Recovery Act (TARP) might not bring recovery to troubled assets, and the Economic Development Administration (EDA) might not develop the economy. "They were the homes of the four Ministries between which the entire apparatus of government was divided. The Ministry of Truth, which concerned itself with news, entertainment, education, and the fine arts. The Ministry of Peace, which concerned itself with war. The Ministry of Love, which maintained law and order. And the Ministry of Plenty, which was responsible for economic affairs. Their names, in Newspeak: Minitrue, Minipax, Miniluv, and Miniplenty." In our time we have the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) responsible for introducing deliberate bias and discrimination into the labor marketplace. I call the EEOC the "Ministry of Fairness" which would be Minifair in Newspeak.

    

2023 January 9, the Fourteenth Amendment and the Electoral College

Fourteenth Amendment
Section 2 Apportionment of Representation

Representatives shall be apportioned among the several States according to their respective numbers, counting the whole number of persons in each State, excluding Indians not taxed. But when the right to vote at any election for the choice of electors for President and Vice-President of the United States, Representatives in Congress, the Executive and Judicial officers of a State, or the members of the Legislature thereof, is denied to any of the male inhabitants of such State, being twenty-one years of age, and citizens of the United States, or in any way abridged, except for participation in rebellion, or other crime, the basis of representation therein shall be reduced in the proportion which the number of such male citizens shall bear to the whole number of male citizens twenty-one years of age in such State.
 
     I was trolling through the United States Constitution amendments and I saw this interesting gem. The wording is a bit more convoluted than I would like, but the message seems to be that the House of Representatives is apportioned by total population while the Electoral College is apportioned by citizens. More specifically the Electoral College counts citizens eligible to vote, male and twenty-one years of age when this amendment was written. I suppose in 2024 one might count all citizens over eighteen in the event that one state has a preponderance of younger or female voters.

     Why is this so interesting in the 2024 election? Are there states with vast populations of immigrant non-citizens whose Electoral count is inflated? Maybe, but that's not the big issue in this coming election. It's more interesting than that.

     How should we count population and citizens of age to vote? Well, that answer is clearly spelled out in Article I, the every-ten-years U.S. Census.

     So how many citizens were counted in the 2020 Census? That's where it gets interesting because, for some reason unknown to me or anybody I've asked, the Democrats felt there was something wrong with counting and knowing how many citizens live here in the United States. That means, if I understand this paragraph correctly, that all states come to the Electoral College equal, no Census-counted citizens, so just the basic two Electoral votes every state gets. According to our Constitution Wyoming and California get an equal share of the 2024 Presidential election. We just have to get our government to enforce its own election law.

     Now isn't that interesting?

    

2023 January 20. Conservatism and Religion

     I'm increasingly concerned about the intrusion of religion into politics, more particularly Christianity into America's conservative movement. I believe my increase in concern is mostly because the threat of religion in politics is increasing. The pro-life movement is entirely a Christian movement, there's precedent in neither America's foundation nor more-recent science for it. (Even God's word in the Book of Genesis, Chapter 2, Verse 7, is on the pro-choice side of the abortion controversy.) More and more I'm hearing people representing our American-foundation conservative position confusing it with their Christian religion.

     In 1215 the Magna Carta was written to remove the sole authority from the King and, in broader terms, to weaken the Devine Right of Kings. The intellectual-political community through Thomas Jefferson to today's libertarians have worked to keep the authoritarian attitude out of politics. Until the 1900s that authority was Christianity, the Crusades, the Inquisition, the treatment of the so-called witches in Salem, et cetera.

     The retreat to religion is a response to the increasing threat of Karl Marx, Communism, and socialism. It is much like the folks sympathetic to the Siren Song of National Socialism with the comfort that Herr Hitler would take care of Comrade Stalin and then, "we'll take care of Hitler." For some irrational reason these people were less afraid of Hitler than they were of Stalin and, for the life of me, I can't figure out why. For the same reasons, and with the same slack-jaw, open-mouth amazement, I see today's conservatives retreating to religion in the hope that, first, the religion will keep Communism at bay and, second, that we can deal with the horrors of the resulting theocracy later on. Maybe, as Christians themselves, they're actually sympathetic to the notion of their church running our country.

     After two millennia of Christianity and the liberal-style, pro-life idiocy on Facebook, I have no such confidence that the Church is a better governing agency than the Progressive State.

    

2023 February 7 - Last Call for the Princeton Conservative?

     I got this issue of the Princeton Alumni Weekly and there it is: "Last Call for the Princeton Conservative?" Maybe we can get rid of those anti-socialist, anti-Stalin, anti-Hitler, anti-racism, anti-woke, anti-propaganda, anti-hate conservatives once and for all, if not in the world or the United States, at least at our beloved Princeton.

     As I started reading the article I realized their view of conservatives is pretty-much the wacky stereotype I see on liberal television shows like "Law & Order." I love the show, but it's political viewpoint is decidedly liberal and conservative spokespeople portrayed are venomous and narrow and anti-gay and anti-abortion obsessed with "family values." The conservative movement that came from the Magna Carta through America's founders and Abraham Lincoln and Ayn Rand to today's Libertarians is not even a speck on their radar.

     But before we dismiss this phantom conservative movement as some kind of liberal fantasy image, are they totally wrong? Isn't there a community of people calling themselves conservatives, starting around 1953, who represent a religious reaction to the atheist communists? You know the sort, all in a huff about homosexuals marrying each other. (Are they afraid gay sex will produce gay offspring? Really?) They impose a religious view, usually a Christian view, on the political goals of the Republican Party and liberty is in the back seat if it's there at all.

     The last thing I want to do, or at least one of the last things I want to do, is to create a conservative movement that epitomizes the negative liberal view of conservatism. I would like to see America's right wing instead become the vision of Barry Goldwater and Ayn Rand, all about liberty and choice rather than dictating church doctrine as a replacement for government doctrine.

     Just as it would be a shame to let the American left's racial hate and violence and its hurtful economic policies mask its support for socialism and tyranny, it would be a shame to let a Religious-Right community of zealots distract us from our own values of human life, liberty, livelihood, property, and contract.

    

Hillsdale College - 2023 February 12-14

     I believe a few things.

1. Hillsdale College is one of the most important conservative voices today.
2. Their message has turned from American Conservative to Religious Right in the past two decades.
3. The conservative movement in America should not alienate 5500 million non-Christians.
4. The folks at Hillsdale might listen to me if I show up on campus to discuss my feelings.

In 2022 February, a year ago, Hillsdale President Larry Arnn said one can only appreciate American values through belief in God and I believe that isn't the message to give, even if he believes it himself. There are many routes to righteousness and religion is only one of them. I have reached the same positive conclusions and values without religious roots, so I know it can be done.

     My Hillsdale representative is Scott Hall, a man I've admired more and more in the twenty years I've known him. We both share a tremendous pride in Hillsdale College and being part of it. He said, "If you want to get your message across, you should go to the campus and talk to people about it."

     So we set up a visit 2023 February 12-14, Scott arranged me meeting with several people including Professor Kevin Portteus who spoke at the Hillsdale event here in Scottsdale last month and a representative of President Arnn's office. (Professor Arnn was frantically busy, as always, preparing for his next trip representing Hillsdale and its values.) When Scott called the Mathematics Department to arrange me giving a talk on Advanced Mobile Phone Service (AMPS, what we called cellular telephones in the 1980s), they were very positive from my last visit. Scott said, "You're a celebrity."

     I got to see the new chapel without having to wear a hard hat this time. It's lovely, it's Christian, the choir practicing there sounded lovely, but it didn't beat me over the head with Christianity. As a non-Christian myself, I felt warm and welcome there.

     The same went for the rest of the campus. People I talked to who weren't Christian were generally positive on how they were treated at this nominally-Christian college. Students of all faiths are genuinely welcome and that's the feeling I got, all good. The visit was good, my message was heard, I learned more than a few things from the intellectuals and scholars at this institute of teaching and learning. In particular, I learned that Aristotle's and Plato's philosophical writings are fundamental to understanding our more-recent values struggles from 1215 through 1789 and I learned another way to express our understanding of "the Laws of Nature and Nature's God" in our Declaration of Independence.

     The thing that made me proud of myself that I was heard at this institution I respect so much. I was welcome as a presenting speaker as I have been before, but this trip was about discussing an issue where our opinions might differ. Respect abounded on all sides.

     I realized I was more proud of Hillsdale College that they could take the time to listen and to discuss things. (I can imagine how my alma mater Princeton would deal about such discussion, but I don't have to imagine as I have personal experience of how they treat people differing and discussing their values and messages.) The hero wasn't an intrepid member of the Hillsdale-College community making a deliberate trip to the campus to deliver a difficult message, not even the institution's representative who made the trip possible (thank you, Scott), but rather the heroes were the people of Hillsdale who created a community genuinely willing have these discussions with me. It's more than lip service. Whether or not I'm successful in effecting change, I'm prouder than ever to be part of this community.

    

    

Progressive View of Life, Liberty, and Property - 2023 March 5

     Tami is a liberal I have known for thirty-plus years. Usually she is quiet on politics, but not today when she decided to probe my thoughts on "discrimination." Based on my American-conservative priorities of life, liberty, and property I said I had a halfway-decent solution to the problem of discrimination by defining businesses with exposure to the general population as "public facing," open to all comers, and that those business should welcome all races and creeds and sexes, et cetera. My picture here is a restaurant on a public street.

     My example of a not-public-facing institution was a private club behind a locked door on the second floor, no street access, no expectation of service for everybody. Tami suggested that discrimination was wrong and, therefore, I should be prohibited from discriminating anywhere, even inside my own home.

     I realized we're not talking about the same values. As an traditional American conservative I put life, liberty, and property at the top of my list of values. (In my own essays on the subject, I make livelihood and contract explicit as well.) We can follow other, nice-to-have values only as far as they don't interfere with these main values. (Note that discrimination, fairness, and racism didn't make the list in America's founding documents.) What conservatives see clearly is that interference with life, liberty, and property oppresses a lot more people than racism or discrimination. (I can offer historical examples.)

     I realized Tami's view is different. She isn't interested in finding ways to reduce discrimination while respecting life, liberty, and property. I realized in Tami's world life, liberty, and property are to be subjugated to left-wing liberal values through Progressive government control. This is the Orwellian vision of the American liberal left.

     A century ago the issue was fairness and the proposed alternative to freedom was socialism, also known as communism. The price paid for socialism was hundreds of millions of lives plus huge costs in liberty and property with little sign of any regret from those who promoted socialism back then or those who promote socialism today. To a left-wing, liberal, Progressive Democrat these costs in life, liberty, and property seem to be clearly-acceptable damage in the Progressive quest for a fair society, then and now. I'm afraid of them and not the conservatives just as we were afraid of them in central Europe ninety years ago.

     The short version of Tami's position is, "In the early 1900s we felt being fair was more important than life, liberty, and property, we brought forth socialism, and we caused hundreds of millions of people to die horrible deaths from their own governments. Oops. That didn't work out so well, but you should believe me because we're going to get it right this time doing the same thing with racism and discrimination."

     The American-conservative view cherishes life, liberty, and property and our country flourished at all income levels for all races, religions, and sexes. Maybe that's why Tami chose and chooses to live here and to enjoy the fruits of our labor while she works to undermine the values that made it possible.

     It's important to understand people like Tami. In her professional and personal live she's a person I have admired for decades and in her political life she's comfortable promoting programs resulting in lashings, lynchings, gulags, and gas chambers. This is the liberal-Progressive quandry, they mean well, things go horribly badly, and they continue on their terrible course. It's up to us conservatives to keep their horrors from happening again.

    

    

Narrow Institutional Path to Liberty - 2023 May 15

     I have struggled over the past few years to find a path back to American liberty that doesn't involve nasty stuff like killing people or initiating force or taking people's stuff. I believe we had a last real shot for eleven weeks from 2020 November 4 through 2021 January 21. Once two-thirds of America could vote for one Presidential candidate and have the other take office, especially with naked-evil attitudes about so many things, nobody is going to take American institutions of liberty seriously ever again.

     It looks like we're going to have to kill people, initiate violence, and take stuff. The idea is to come up with a set of values that clearly discriminates between doing those things in a cause that makes that not necessary in the future against those who do those things willfully as policy. We did that in 1865 when we fought a war against slavery. War may be evil but we felt then that slavery was the greater evil. I still feel that way today.

     Before we launch into such a moral voyage of discovery, I'd like to point out there may be one last hope of an institutional solution.

     The Fourteenth Amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America says that the House of Representatives is apportioned by population but the Electoral College is apportioned by citizen count. (There is a restiction to male citizens over twenty-one, that sounds wrong given the voting franchise has expanded, but the likelihood of a major difference is apportionment between males over twenty-one and all citizens over eighteen is very small. I'm told the reason for the citizen count was to make sure southern states gave former slaves citizenship to maintain their Electorial counts.) Of course a citizen count would come from the United States Census described in Article One.

     Well, the Democratic Party lobbied for the Census not to count citizens, to what end I have to wonder, but that means we have two elections, 2024 and 2028, where every state gets, by law, the same Electoral votes, According to our Constitution and the Democrat's Census mistake, Wyoming and California are equal in the next two presidential elections.

     While we still have a Supreme Court, we should get this pronounced and agreed to, by force if necessary. If that does not happen, then, I believe, the next phase is going to involve some really nasty stuff. The alternative is seeing our liberty gone Stalin-Hitler-Castro-Mao style for a long time.

    

    

2023 August 30 - Maui

     Maui is hot these days and it's more than the fire. I've heard both sides and I have no opinion of my own to offer. One of my friends lived on Maui and laments the loss of the places he used to go. So far as I know, all the places I've lived are still there, my elementary and junior-high schools were torn down in an otherwise-intact community, and a few of my rural running routes have turned into housing developments, but my world is basically still there. Having a whole familiar town just gone is something I haven't had to deal with.

     The conspiracy argument goes both ways. There is a community of real-estate developers who get a huge windfall by having all these houses gone. We have seen what governments will do to their people, even for relatively modest gains, and, since 2020, we have seen what governments will do in the United States. Burning a town to the ground is well within those limits. Killing one hundred people by not letting them leave is nothing compared to the damage from the COVID lockdowns and restrictions. Folks tell me the black smoke was not house-burning smoke, houses burned to the ground were surrounded by unaffected trees, and rich people's expensive homes were disproportionaly spared.

     On the other hand, other folks tell me houses were built with inexpensive, flammable roofs and the wealthier people eventually replaced them with newer, less flammible roofs. Those roofs might have burned quickly and with black smoke while surrounding trees and structures were less affected. On top of that it was a windy day that made the fire spread from one end of town to the other in just two hours.

    

    

2023 September 20 - President Biden on Israel

     I saw a speech given by President Biden in response to the Hamas attack on Israel. It was a strong, pro-Jewish, pro-Israel message that made me proud, "We stand with Israel." Given some of the negative messages we have been hearing in England and the United States, especially the strong anti-Jewish messages, it was nice to see a Presidential speech against the Hamas attack.

     I'm not naive. The Democrats are still the party of ANTIFA and BLM devoted to their Final Solution to the Jewish problem in America and BDS with their appeal for the destruction of the State of Israel. This speech also, briefly, supported a "two-state solution" that didn't thrill me. Still, there are a lot of people that will see and hear this and feel encouraged in their outrage over this strong, anti-Jewish action.

     I have to wonder technically how this talk happened. We have seen "Sleepy Joe" since 2020 and there's no way the man in those videos could give a coherent and compelling call for action. Was it computer generating imagary (CGI)? Was it a Joe-Biden look-alike actor? I don't know which, actually I don't care which. It was good to hear a voice of my country's executive branch defending my people against hate.

2023 November 6 - Hamas

     2023 October 7 Hamas attacked Israel and, more to the point, self-proclaimed Palestinians attacked Jews. For a variety of reasons, I believe the response should be swift and total. Israel should give a week notice that Gaza will be leveled and then, as the Nike ad says, just do it. Intolerable behavior must have unbearable consequences.

     What sticks in my craw is the whining of left-wing, progressive, liberal, Democrat Jews. For 158 years since the Democratic Party formed their grassroots White-Knights organization to represent their social views, there has been no sugar coating of their

    

    

    

    

    

If you like what you read here, then here are my other American-issues essays.

Today is 2024 May 20, Monday,
9:40:20 Mountain Standard Time (MST).
9 visits to this web page.


  Wikipedia Affiliate Button

THE ADAM HOME PAGE

adam@the-adam.com