Monthly Archives: August 2012
Robespierre and St. Juste used corruption charges to remove Camille Desmoulins and Geroges-Jacques Danton (two of the revolution’s founders), among others, from their positions and had them executed. Shortly thereafter, it was time for St. Juste and Robespierre to feel the sharp edge of the revolution on the back of their necks.
Otherwise, we might as well just sharpen the blade and let the chips (and heads) fall where they may.
I know I’m racist because I’ve been told so. I’ve been told I’m racist because I don’t believe Barack Obama has been a very good president. Even though I could care less about the colour of his skin, I’m a racist because I believe he is the ultimate triumph of glib rhetoric over real accomplishment. I’m a racist because I believe his record as president illustrates his lack of commitment to his stated values and demonstrates little more than a love of the spotlight and a lust for power.
The American economy is in tatters. Unemployment is consistently over 8% and this president has ignored not only the spirit of the constitution but the letter of it. It is his Attorney General who stands in contempt of Congress for failing to turn over documents that were subpoenaed in the Fast & Furious scandal. It is this president who supported him in his disdain for the people’s representatives.
I’m a racist because Spike Lee and Michael Moore tell me I’m a racist. These are the same celebrities who in different televised interviews admitted that President Obama has not delivered on his promises but they would vote for the president anyway. Why? Simply because of President Obama’s race. I’m a racist because I believe in evaluating on a person’s record rather than their skin colour.
I’m a racist because I do not support the mindless sanctimony of so many on the left who are more caught up in the illusion of a black man being president than they are in the reality of a nation facing serious issues for which he is both ill-prepared and is unwilling to properly address.
I am a racist because I am offended that this president promised “change you can believe in” but has demonstrated in this election campaign the worst gutter politics of any party on either the right or the left. I’m a racist because I do not support a president who happens to be black because one of his key political supporters admitted on CNN that it doesn’t matter that she deliberately misquoted the Los Angeles Times in a fund raising letter to the American People. I’m a racist because that lack of ethics and integrity matters to me.
I am considered a racist in Canada too because I condemn the neo-Nazi, xenophobic attitudes behind the discriminatory policies of the Party Quebecois and the CAQ which would trample the rights of fellow citizens simply because they weren’t born to a pur laine French family.
I am a racist because I demand and expect all citizens regardless of race, culture, language or heritage to be treated identically under the law. I am a racist because I condemn female gender mutilation, abortion being used to get rid of unwanted female fetuses by some whose culture is highly paternalistic and refuse to accept the right of some cultures to impose their system of law, their values or their faith on others.
I am racist because I am proud that I come from a multi-racial family that includes blacks, whites, Asians and indigenous people.
I am racist because I believe that the person’s race, culture, religion, gender orientation and hair colour are significantly less important than their character and their values.
I am also a fascist.
I know this is true because I have been called a fascist many times for believing that we each have a responsibility for our own lives rather than a God-given right to expect the government and the taxpayer to pay our way. I am a fascist because I believe that post-secondary education should be available to all who qualify but that the responsibility to pay for it is a shared responsibility between the government and the student.
I am a fascist because I actually believe in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, The American Bill of Rights and the U.N. Charter of Rights. I am a fascist because I believe that taxing one group to give more entitlements to others is simply wrong and that everyone except those who live below the poverty line should pay exactly the same percentage of their income in taxes to support the needs of the country.
I am a fascist because I recognize that government does not create wealth or jobs, it undermines both and promoting class conflict as many politicians do these days is nothing more than a cynical strategy to divide the electorate and win votes.
I am a fascist because I believe that the prosperity of a nation lies in the accomplishment of its individual citizens and not in the hands of bureaucrats and politicians who have a proven record of failure.
I am a fascist because I am offended by the hypocrisy of the left in Canada which repeatedly and hysterically condemns the Conservative government but which remains silent on the repeated ethics and legal violations of its own political representatives.
Since the last Canadian election, the socialist New Democratic Party has been caught twice in improper and illegal fund raising activities and was recently fined more than $340,000 by the CRTC. The left-leaning Liberals have had a Senator sent to prison for misappropriation of government funds and misuse of government resources. It was forced to terminate the employment of a senior staffer who violated the privacy of a sitting Cabinet Minister by using government computers and Internet access to publish details of the minister’s divorce and it now stands accused of misusing a highly respected Liberal senator who they knew was suffering from dementia and had been declared mentally incompetent six months ago for their own cynical purposes.
I am a fascist because I recognize that the Conservative Party has not been fined, charged or convicted of any ethical breach of the rules or the law during that same period. Even in the so called Robocall scandal, which saw the left accuse the Conservatives of illegal and unethical election campaign fraud, the only person charged and fined to date is a Liberal. I am a fascist because I believe that matters.
I am a fascist because I believe that there are too many entitlements for those who don’t need them and not enough real support for the working poor. I am a fascist because I believe it is a disgrace to demand free tuition, public sector and union salary increases when there are people sleeping in our streets and children going to bed hungry.
I am a fascist because I believe that ‘treating’ ourselves to more entitlements using borrowed money is the road to economic ruin and I am a fascist because I believe in less government not more government control of our families and our individual lives.
I am anti-environmental because I believe that global warming is more fanaticism than science. I am anti-environment because I refused to support the Kyoto Accord which was signed by a Liberal government and never implemented.
I am anti-women because I believe that abortion is a highly personal decision that should never be easy for anyone and that the father and the fetus both have rights.
I am homophobic because I think that pride parades and other outrageous behaviour are both unnecessary and insulting. I am homophobic because I fail to see how promoting how different it is, the gay and lesbian community expects to be accepted as a normal part of our society. I am homophobic even though I have spoken out in support of the gay and lesbian community and attacked those who would suppress their right to marry and love who they wish. I am homophobic because I believe gay couples are entitled to all of the same benefits, rights and respect as heterosexual couples.
I know I am all of these things and more because I have been called all of these things and more but I am never offended by it. I am proud to be called a racist by those who put a higher value on race, culture and language than they do on character, integrity and respect for the rights of others.. I am proud that my values prevent me from judging a person by the colour of their skin and forces me to evaluate them based solely on their actions and their principles.
I am proud that I understand that the success of any society is built on the success of the individuals that comprise it and that there is no self-respect or sense of accomplishment to be found in living off paltry government handouts or penalizing others for being successful.
I am proud to be called a fascist by those who lack the intellectual ability to fairly evaluate others based on a consistent set of values but who are quick to condemn those who do not agree with them while being slow to condemn the performance and ethical violations of those they support..
We are divided into left and right, not by choice but by blind stupidity. We have traded away our values for entitlements and to willfully embrace politically correct illusions of principled values. Voting for a failed politician simply because he is black is every bit as racist as voting against a successful politician for the same reason.
If I was an American, I could not support Barack Obama based solely on his record and his broken promise to deliver change in which we could believe. I cannot support a xenophobic Quebecois political party that tramples and restricts the rights of fellow citizens in the name of cultural purity and I have no respect for those who condemn others based on ideology while supporting those who do the very things they condemn. I am even more proud to be called all of these things by people to lazy to inform themselves and who follow like sheep without thought or application of personal values.
I hate hypocrisy and a lack of integrity above all else and quite frankly, my friends, if that makes me a racist and a fascist; I’m ok with that.
© 2012 Maggie’s Bear
all rights reserved
The written content of this article is the sole property of Maggie’s Bear but a link to it may be shared by those who think it may be of interest to others
Follow The Bear on Twitter: @maggsbear or connect with a friend request on Facebook: Maggie’s Bear
Everybody knows that the boat is leaking,
everybody knows that the captain lied
like their father or their dog just died
Merriam-Webster’s defines democracy as:
a)Government by the people
b)a government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly or indirectly through a system of representation usually involving periodically held free elections
The Oxford Dictionary defines democracy as:
a system of government by the whole population or all the eligible members of a state, typically through elected representatives
I see more posts, tweets and commentary on democracy than any other single topic. Everyone talks about it including politicians, the media, academics and every day people. Democracy is not a homogenous thing and it takes many forms. In fact, there are almost three dozen different forms of democracy currently in existence.
Some democracies use a first-past-the-post system of allocating representation. Canada and the United States are examples of this approach. Others, like Italy, Israel and Germany have representative democracies and allocate seats based on the percentage of votes received by each political party.
Some democracies, like Canada and Sweden, are constitutional monarchies while others like the United States and France are republics. Some democracies are actually totalitarian and a few are outright dictatorships which seems incongruous to our basic concept of democracy but which is true nonetheless.
One thing they all share in common, however, is that they are too easily corrupted by those who run for office.
The common thread in democracy is that the state belongs to the people and it is the people who manage through some form of elected representation, the affairs of state. Too often, those who run for office lose sight of the simple fact that it is not their function to govern the lives of others but rather to represent us in governing our common affairs.
Elected representation is meant to be about service not ruling. Unfortunately, that is not the norm in modern democracies.
The ‘people’ are partly responsible for this because too many of us have allowed our democracies to be eroded by cynical politics and election campaigns where we are lied to and often bribed with our own money. It isn’t, however, only the fault of the people. I believe that in large part the fault lies with politicians and how they practice politics.
They have turned their backs on serving the people and are focused on power and winning elections to obtain power. They are meant to be the caretakers of our constitutions and defenders of our rights but increasingly are the single biggest threat to both.
The current presidential election campaign in the United States exemplifies just how out of touch politicians have become with their actual purpose. The choices being offered the American people have almost nothing to do with the real and serious issues they face and everything to do with blame, accusation and outright lies. It’s all about winning and in the end, you begin to wonder what it is they think they’re actually trying to win or what they intend to do once they have won.
In Canada, the province of Quebec is also going through an election and the choices being offered border on insanity. The three leading contenders are so completely out of touch with reality that you begin to wonder if they have any idea of what they are doing to the province.
One candidate wants to divorce the province from the rest of Canada without having any plan on how to make up the close to $20 billion a year the province would lose in transfer payments. She has put forward one of the most racist campaign platforms in Canadian history, a string of election promises that would take away basic rights from citizens of the province who are not naturally born Quebec French. Her two main opponents aren’t much better.
One is the current premier who has a record that is more than sufficient reason to turf him out of office. The other is a misogynist, former separatist who is promising to cut public sector spending while promising to increase it.
It’s enough to make your head explode.
I think we need to repair our electoral process. We elect too many who lack the qualifications to represent us and some are just flat out stupid or dishonest or both. In response to another gang shooting on the weekend here, one local councilor proposed that the owners of legal firearms be required to store them at a central storage facility and log them in and out when they want to use them.
More bureaucracy and state control is always the first solution these twits propose. Even the chief of police is on the record as saying the problem is not with legal firearms but with weapons smuggled into the country and acquired illegally. What’s the political solution? Restrict legal gun ownership.
It’s like your surgeon offering to cut off your right arm because you broke your foot.
In the last federal election, the New Democratic Party surprised itself with a result that was far beyond anything they had dared to believe would happen and they became Canada’s Official Opposition to the government. They achieved this success by parachuting unknown candidates into many Quebec ridings, some of whom were barely out of their teens and one who was nineteen at the time. How can anyone rationalize the idea of someone barely out of high school participating in billion dollar decisions?
It’s small wonder our countries are struggling to get back on track.
I think the time has come to establish a means test for politicians. I think we should run criminal background and credit checks on those who wish to run for office and ‘serve’ the people. Perhaps with a proper background check we could avoid the absurd situation in Manitoba where an accused pedophile, who is currently facing criminal charges, is running for public office.
I also think there should be a knowledge test. Would be politicians should have to pass a test on the nation’s constitution and charter of rights. They should be required to demonstrate a solid understanding of how our system of government works, whatever that system is and have a demonstrated knowledge of the issues facing our nations. There is no point in allowing those who have no concept of national defense participate in decisions about military procurement or allowing people who have no understanding of how economies work participate in decisions that have direct effect on the economy.
No properly run business would even consider hiring someone with no experience in the areas of the company’s business but we do it all the time when we elect the inexperienced to office.
Politicians should be required to represent the people in their constituency first and their political party second.
Finally, I believe there should be a minimum age requirement. We don’t need people who are barely out of their teens deciding how our nations should be run, no matter how sincere and earnest they may be. In Quebec, the separatist party recruited a young man who led the recent student protest over tuition increases and he dutifully dropped out of college to answer the call. What real knowledge or life experience can he bring to the complex issues facing Quebec society today?
We have enough ill-informed and inexperienced people in government as it is we don’t need more including some who have not yet reached the legal age to drink in some jurisdictions.
Reform won’t happen, of course. The more corrupted and broken the system remains, the more it works in favour of those who scramble for power like pigs fighting over a few ears of corn in a sty.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t work for the people or for our societies. It undermines the rights of the people and erodes the prosperity and success of our nations. True leaders with vision, character and integrity would understand that. The fact that we haven’t seen any leaders like that for a very long time pretty much confirms the caliber of the choices we have at election time, regardless of what election it may be.
The tragedy is that everybody knows that the system is broken. Everybody knows that the taxation systems of almost all democracies are overly complex and unfair, politics is corrupt and the people have no real choices and have little more opportunity other than choosing from equally bad sides in a losing proposition.
Everybody knows that every major issue that confronts us today can be traced back to how politicians and their parties have mishandled circumstance or pandered to special interest, corrupting our politics and our nations in the process. Everybody knows the people have lost their voice for little more than yelling at each other in frustration rather than uniting to demand and bring about real change.
“There is all the difference in the world between treating people equally and attempting to make them equal. While the first is the condition of a free society, the second means as De Tocqueville describes it, ‘a new form of servitude.”
Canada is a nation that believes in equality and it has proven it by devoting decades to a bizarre concept of redistribution of wealth that borders on insanity. Through various transfer payments from the federal government, both national unity and fair distribution of wealth are meant to be improved across all provinces. The problem is that it hasn’t worked.
One of the largest recipients of transfer payments is the province of Quebec. This year it will receive just over $7 billion in equalization payments plus an additional $10 billion in transfers for healthcare and other social programs. This represents 25% of Quebec’s annual budget but despite this injection of federal money, the province still has a budget deficit. Over and above the transfer payments, the federal government also covers the cost of Old Age Security and Employment Insurance.
Despite this, there is still a significant resentment in Quebec directed towards the federal government specifically and the rest of Canada in general. It’s clear that wealth redistribution has purchased neither cooperative federalism nor fiscal responsibility in la belle province.
It isn’t merely Quebec, however. The Maritimes benefits from the Canadian idea of redistributing wealth and the uneven application of social programs. In the Maritimes, EI is almost a second job for some and is seen as necessary to allow people to continue in seasonal occupations that cannot sustain them independently over an entire year.
Nationally, the idea of transfer payments on the scale applied in Canada simply hasn’t worked. It has penalized successful provinces while rewarding poor economic management in others. It is a solution that only politicians, looking to get elected, could develop.
Now there are demands for wealth redistribution between economic classes. The wealthy are seen as the enemy because they have made scads of money while those with less see their circumstance as the fault of those with money. There are demands that government do something to redistribute wealth even though it was governments who through complex and misguided tax policies that actually helped to create this mess in the first place.
In the end, imposed wealth redistribution is simply unworkable.
It is unworkable because most people, governments included, do not understand the root causes of uneven distribution of wealth and in too many cases, seek to peanlize success and reward lack of achievement and mediocrity.
In the end it creates a climate of resentment and entitlement which only further divides us and which contributes to an overall decline in productivity and economic prosperity for everyone.
I had a very good discussion the other night with a young man on Twitter who was very sincere and earnest in his desire to see the wealthy pay their ‘fair’ share. I asked him what he considered their fair share but he didn’t have an answer for it. When I suggested it might be more fair if everyone except the working poor paid the same percentage of their income in taxes without deductions or tax credits, he rejected that idea.
I had used the example of a person earning $40,000 taxed at 20% who would pay $8.000 in income tax while someone earning $400,000 would pay $80,000. He told me it wasn’t enough. I asked him why and he said because the person making $400,000 could afford to pay more and therefore they should. I asked him why and he didn’t really have an answer other than he thought it was unfair that he had less.
And that is the real idea behind wealth redistribution. It isn’t about everyone paying their fair share, it’s about penalizing those who have much. It’s envy and social greed not a quest for fair taxation for all.
When I pointed out that unions pay no taxes on membership dues or investment income but still have significant influence over government policy, the young man had no answer for that but clearly didn’t see that as unfair. I’m sure the unions don’t either.
The simple reality is that government does not create wealth any more than it creates jobs or economic stability. Government interferes with those things to our disadvantage. What government should be doing is ensuring that everyone pays an equal percentage of their income in taxes and then spends no more than the tax revenue it collects except in exceptional and emergency circumstances.Attempting to redistribute wealth is a fool’s errand. Why should a surgeon, for example, pay a higher percentage of their income than someone working at Walmart? If they both pay the same percentage of their income, the surgeon will pay significantly more in terms of real cash than the Walmart employee but each will have contributed equally, their fair share to government and its needs.
It seems incongruous to me that so many who criticize government for its inefficiency and stupidity also call on government to manage the redistribution of wealth. In Canada, more than $100 billion is redistributed by the federal government and all that has achieved is resentment, expensive bureaucratic complexity and bad economic behaviour at the provincial level.
As the song says, “he steals from the poor and gives to the rich…..stupid bitch.” Some will tell you that government has done that for years at the expense of every day citizens. There is some truth to that but the solution doesn’t lay in doing a 180 and taking from the rich to give to the less well off.
The solution is to insure that everyone pays their fair share and that means everyone gives exactly the same percentage of their income without exception.
© 2013 Maggie’s Bear
all rights reserved. The written content of this article is the sole property of Maggie’s Bear but a link to it may be shared by those who think it may be of interest to others
Let’s connect on Twitter: @maggsbear or send a friend request on Facebook to: Maggie’s Bear
Various dictionaries define love as an intense romantic or sexual attachment for someone while another called it a feeling of warm personal caring for another as in a parent and child. One dictionary gave up trying and simply described love as the most spectacular,indescribable, deep euphoric feeling for someone.
Margaret Atwood described love as that condition where another person’s happiness is essential to your own. (women are probably better at defining this stuff than guys)
However it’s defined, love is a universally powerful emotion and one most of us have experienced on many levels throughout our lives. Like most, I don’t really know how to define it either other than to look at Maggie or our children and grandchildren. It is easy to understand the meaning of love without the need for words in those moments.
Still, it won’t keep many from trying to put love into verse. Humanity has been trying for centuries, from before the bible, through Shakespeare, Barrett-Browning, Leonard Cohen and a million other poets and song writers. Most of it will be forgotten because most of it is trite or just plain silly like the verses I quoted above. But some seem to be inspired and the verses go beyond the trivial like this song. It is what I live with Maggie every day.
It’s a very short post but then he was a very thoughtful writer who was able to say in only a few words what most of us struggle to say in many. Ronald Regan referred to these 10 points as ‘The American Charter’ but I think of them more as simply a Charter of Common Sense.
You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong.
You cannot help little men by tearing down big men.
You cannot further the brotherhood of man by encouraging class hatred.
You cannot keep out of trouble by spending more than you earn.
You cannot build character and courage by taking away [people’s] initiative and independence.
|William J. H. Boetcker|
I originally credited this post to Abraham Lincoln but have since learned that while it is often thought to have been written by him, it was in fact written by the Reverend William J. H. Boetcker. Regardless of who wrote it, what he wrote applies to all of the arguments about entitlement, fair taxation, government intervention and social engineering, self-reliance and employment in which we engaged these days.