A History of Liars: The American Politician (Volume One)

Alan J. Yeck

This is the first part of a three-part series.


Introduction

I do not support any hate groups or any people or groups that exclude others based on any socio-political demographic. Hate is not a strategy. Its only purpose is to divide, destroy, and create more hatred. Do not allow yourself to be used by either side to this end. While I’m a registered Democrat, I have never pulled the party lever.

I look at the issues, what those running for office are saying on how they will address the issues, and then I vote. I’ve voted red, blue, green and even the occasional Libertarian sprinkled in to show my protest of the status quo.  At least that’s how I used to do it before I realized just how rigged and corrupt our political system is. I am completely, 100% nonpartisan – they all suck. They have allowed our country to get here by their actions and inactions and it has nothing to do with the will of the American people. 

The attack on the Capitol of January 6, 2021 was a tragic day in our country and just as tragic is that it wasn’t really a surprise. Was it to you? I have never identified with that particular group of people that went from the rally to the Capitol but do not think their intent was to overthrow the government, as many officials like to toss out to the media. I mean in a country that has millions of firearms, and I think it would be reasonable to say that group would have certainly have been gun owners, they were unarmed. Remember the old saying – ‘you don’t bring a spear to a revolution,’ (thanks Water Buffalo Lodge guy). 

We are a country born from violence and war and haven’t done much to change that in 245 years. And again, to be clear, I’m not defending them or their occupation/riot at all but it wasn’t an attempt to go from their rooms at Comfort Suites to overthrow our government. I mean they get a free breakfast so why screw that up? 

I heard the Speaker of the House call it an “…attack on the temple of democracy…” and later an NPR reporter referred to it as an “…attack on the museum of democracy…” I believe the latter to be a more accurate description – a museum is a place full of old stuff that doesn’t work anymore in today’s world.

Spot on!

The Capitol building is a beautiful, historic landmark. A beautiful building. Building. It is not a temple of democracy, or a synagogue of freedom, or a mosque of liberty. It is office space that we, the citizens (who are supposed to be in control of our government), allow the officials we elected to use. With how our country has been run in the last several decades we might have a better return if the space was leased to Amazon as a shipping hub. I think the return on investment would be much better than what the House and Senate do for us.

I am not upset that the building was occupied in protest but it might have been better served had the millions of Americans who sleep without a home every night been the occupiers. Or the millions imprisoned because prisons are the chosen mental health system of the government. I am upset that those inside the building feel they are the gatekeepers of freedom when the truth is, they often hold our freedoms hostage pending corporate approval. They protect their own asses and make money doing so. 

Democracy comes from the people only. It doesn’t reside in a building in D.C. that has a long history of liars and thieves occupying it. We the people, define our freedoms, our liberties, our justice, our systems but have been in a deep slumber for too long now, believing those we vote for have our best interest in mind.  We flipped on the auto pilot and happily watched Tom Brady and Lebron James instead of Mitch McConnell and Nancy Pelosi. We passed the homeless on our way to see The Avengers defend our way of life. The water the children drank was full of lead but gas was cheap.  Rome was burning but at least the lions were distracting.  

My approach has always been, and will always be peaceful protest and in revolutionary thought, through electing those who promise to dissemble this dirty, political warhorse, funded by corporations that has controlled our wonderful country for much too long. True democracy back to the people. 

“Government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the Earth.”

-Abraham Lincoln

This is the first article in a three-part series by Alan J. Yeck reflecting on the state of the American political system, its challenges and the far-reaching effects it can have.

We have the power to change American politics back to a system that serves the people, not the politicians. Contact your representatives and ask them to listen to these facts and national narratives.

Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit sniffing glue.

By Alan J. Yeck

Just when I thought the political fruit cake couldn’t get any nuttier, I woke to the news that Hillary Clinton, in a discussion with Nancy Pelosi, shared her own conspiracy theory that President Trump called Vladimir Putin on the day of the riot at the Capital. I find myself going back and forth between being entertained by the moron platform (well used by both parties) to really pissed off that this is even in the news. Maybe it’s true, maybe it’s not? That’s why we wait for facts before holding public hearings. I don’t like Trump but I don’t like Biden either. I don’t like any of them and this is just another example of ‘why.’ Their intense, personal hatred of Trump comes first and foremost, well before issues that are affecting and destroying the American people on a daily basis. Vengeance is mine, says the Lord…and Hillary and Nancy. Don’t you wish they were that consumed with the fraudulent, student loan industry? Don’t you wish they spent their energy on campaign finance reform, or healthcare, or a distribution plan for the COVID vaccine? Don’t you wish all of them had their heads out of their asses and actually worked for the welfare of the American people? I do.

The next WTF moment came with two commercials on the networks; one was about TV news personality, Katie Couric, being interviewed by the news, about Trump. The other promo was about the news, interviewing CBS News White House correspondent, Major Garrett, on Trump. This is what we do now – the news interviews the news and makes it news when it’s not news at all. Again, I’m not defending nor supporting any of the politicians including Trump, but is it a surprise, to anyone in the country, how the mainstream news networks loathe Trump? I’m not saying they don’t have good reason – I’m saying they are news networks and not gossip tabloids (or shouldn’t be gossip tabloids). If you also loathe Trump do you need more loathing ammo? If you support Trump, does this ease your fears as we transition to a new Biden administration? Maybe try reporting on how much money from Super PACs go to which politicians? How about where the thousands upon thousands of lobbyists spend their time, and money, in Washington? How about using the power of the press to bring real, lasting change to a country desperately needing it, by real reporting and not a vendetta agenda. Do you understand that as you also seek your pound of old, white, flabby, flesh that you only create more mistrust in what you report on?  The only difference between you and The National Enquirer is…nothing. Except I did see Elvis in an Asheville head shop so the Enquirer’s reporting on that was true. 

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The Constitution as Contract for Individual Freedom

By Christiane Warren, Ph.D.

Contemporary voices who demand that the Federal government should actively guarantees everyone’s democratic equality in access as well as quality of outcome, fail to grasp the original purpose and design of the U.S. Constitution. Written in  response to the shortcomings of the preceding Articles of Confederation, the Constitution needs to be seen as a charter, an assignment of power and authority. [i] To establish a “more perfect union,” the founders’ task was to determine the inter-connectedness of authorities and responsibilities assigned to the Federal government and to the American people. The founders informed by enlightened social contract theory and Adam Smith’s views on free enterprise designed the United States as a representative republican confederacy of independent states.  The Constitution grounded in the Lockean classical liberalism ideals was the contract that protected individual freedom and private property.[ii]

The Federal government’s authority is received by those it governs, and its primary responsibility to them remains the protection of individuals’ freedom from government overreach and to ensure their safety in the furtherance of private enterprise. The Constitution reflects the founders’ resistance to Britain’s mercantilist trade policies and to governmental control through taxation and legislation. Thus, they created an economic and legislative structure that asserted the primacy of private property rights as the foundation for personal freedom as Madison asserts.[iii] Contemporary scholars such as Cost afford the founders to have the foresight of creating a system that paved the way for capitalism.[iv]

To achieve their goal, the authors of the Constitution identified the existence of factions as the greatest threat to freedom and the rule of law. James Madison saw factions leading to power imbalances which in turn may lead to instability and even insurrection.[v] John Adams saw factional divisions as being tied to economic status and warned against the danger of majority rule; the dominion of the masses.[vi]  In response, as Constitutional scholar Grimes asserts, Adams needs to be credited with developing the solution, through his introduction of a representative balance achieved in the form of “mixed government.” [vii]

The complex structure of check and balances embodied in the three branches of government was designed to protect the confederate structure of the new nation and enabled leadership to protect the people from majority rule as Hamilton affirms.[viii] The success of this system is predicated on the acceptance of all sides in the basic fairness of the Constitutional compact and is put in practice when all parties abide by the established laws and procedures, including those that allow for revisions when deemed necessary. The body politic succeeds as a national enterprise when all of its people and their representatives follow the established procedures and rules of civility in a confrontation and accept the outcome.[ix]

Thus, in today’s volatile societal discourse all Americans will be best served to recall the uniquely American success story of justice guaranteed by the Constitutional contract between government and the American as established by the nation’s founders.

Notes:


[i] Bruce P. Frohnen & George W. Carey, The Framer’s Constitution, (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2016), p. 81.

[ii] Edling, Max M. Chapter editor: “A Mongrel Kind of Government” in Peter Thompson and Peter S. Onuf. British America and the Early United States. ( University of Virginia Press Stable, 2013), p.153. 

[iii] James Madison, “Property” 1792 From Philip B. Kurland and Ralph Lerner, ed., The Founders’ Constitution (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1987), 1:598-99.]

[iv] Jay Cost, “The Business of Society – Capitalism, Socialism, and the American Founding,” American Enterprise Institute, p.3.

[v] James Madison, Federalist Papers #10, The Avalon Project, https://www.avalon.yale.law.edu/18th_century/fed10.asp

[vi] The Works of John Adams, edited by Charles Francis Adams (Boston: Charles C. Little and James Brown, 1851), vol. VI, p.68.

[vii] Alan Pendleton Grimes, American Political Thought, (Lanham, MD: American University Press, 1983), p.111.

[viii] Alexander Hamilton, Federalist Papers #9, The Avalon Project, https://www.avalon.law.yale.edu/18th_century/fed09.asp

[ix] Adam White, “A republic, if we can keep it,” American Enterprise Institute (2/4/2020) https://www.aei.org/articles/a-republic-if-we-cankeep-it/

Bibliography:

The works of John Adams, edited by Charles Francis Adams (Boston: Charles C. Little and James Brown, 1851), vol. VI, p. 57.

Bailyn, Bernard. The Ideological Origins of the American Revolution. Cambridge, MA: The Bellnap Press of Harvard University Press, 1992.

Cost, Jay. “The Business of Society – Capitalism, Socialism, and the American Founding.” American Enterprise Institute, 5/2020. https://www.aei.org

Edling, Max M. Chapter editor: “A Mongrel Kind of Government” in Peter Thompson and Peter S. Onuf. British America and the Early United States. University of Virginia Press Stable, 2013.  http://www.jstor.com/stable/j.ctt6

RICHARD A. EPSTEIN. The Classical Liberal Constitution. Cambridge, Massachusetts; London, England: Harvard University Press, 2014.

FROHNEN, BRUCE P., and GEORGE W. CAREY. “The Framers’ Constitution” In Constitutional Morality and the Rise of Quasi-Law, 243-86. Cambridge, Massachusetts; London, England: Harvard University Press, 2016. www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctvjnrsvf.11.

Grimes, Alan Pendleton. American Political Thought. Revised Edition, Lanham, MD: University Press of America, 1983.

Hamilton, Alexander. The Federalist Papers #9. The Avalon Project.https://www.avalon.law.yale.edu18th_century/fed09.asp

Hamilton, Alexander. The Federalist Papers #51. The Avalon Project.https://www.avalon.law.yale.edu18th_century/fed51.asp

Keller, Morton. America’s Three Regimes – A New Political History. New York: Oxford University Press, 2007.

Madison, James. The Federalist Papers #10. The Avalon Project.https://www.avalon.law.yale.edu18th_century/fed10.asp

Madison, James. The Federalist Papers #39. The Avalon Project.https://www.avalon.law.yale.edu18th_century/fed39.asp

Madison, James. The Federalist Papers #45. The Avalon Project.https://www.avalon.law.yale.edu18th_century/fed45.asp

Madison, James. The Federalist Papers #47. The Avalon Project. https://www.avalon.law.yale.edu18th_century/fed47.asp

Madison, James. “Property.” 1792. From Philip B. Kurland and Ralph Lerner, ed., The Founders’ Constitution (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1987), 1:598-99.]

Maggs, Gregory E. A Concise Guide to the to the Federalist Papers as a Source of the Original Meaning of the United States Constitution. George Washington University Law School, 2007.

White, Adam J. “A republic, if we can keep it.” American Enterprise Institute, 2/4/2020. https://www.aei.org/articles

More About the Author

Guest author, Dr. Christiane Warren, Senior Consultant atAnna J Cooper Education AdvocacyRecognized for producing growth and cultivating success in the career and education space, Dr. Warren has served as tenured faculty, department chair and academic dean for entire divisions and in the Academic Affairs office at both 2-and-4 year institutions in NJ and NY. Read more about Dr. Warren here.

Danger: The Anti-Racist movement is inadvertedly racist & un-American in its key argument

By Guest Contributor: Christiane Warren, Ph.D.

The current fever-pitched debate centering around systemic racism, white privilege and micro-aggressions have created a radical echo-chamber that threatens to destroy American core values. Its basic argument places Black Americans in the perpetual state of victimhood, negating agency, personal accountability regarding one’s choices, and rendering all accomplishments and future efforts futile. That is in essence racist. It is also un-American because it makes progress and renewal, the quintessential American ideals, impossible. True equity is accepting full ownership in what happens to the country as a whole, for all of us. Not only do white people need to take responsibility for their real or perceived privilege, but black people also have to step up and take ownership of their own choices and contributions to the body politic. If we want to have a brutally honest conversation about race and power in society, then we need to move away from the victim vs. oppressor dynamic. The single-minded emphasis on systemic racism as explanation and excuse negates individual agency and absolves black Americans from responsibility. That is un-American and it is demeaning to black Americans. Success means having the freedom of one’s choice along with the responsibility of their consequences.

Yet, what is even more troubling is the overall insistence that the narrative of systemic racism’s primacy and pervasiveness is the only acceptable position to take in any public or private discourse. Such intellectual orthodoxy goes against core American values guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution. Coupled with the accompanying “cancel” culture and the acquiescence of many political and corporate leaders to the extremist demands of the anti-racism agenda, America is on the fast-track to become thoroughly un-American.

Most of Americans, regardless of background or political leaning, will acknowledge that inequalities linked to race, class, gender, religion, etc. continue to persist in modern society. Yet, those who argue that race oppression not only trumps all other inequalities but also is the only valid lens through which power structures can be understood, advance a position that is both reductive and utterly devoid of dissent. That is anti-Democratic, reminiscent of Communism, which stresses class oppression above all, and in its totalitarian propagandistic approach, thoroughly un-American.  

By reducing all problems to racial inequality, both success and failure no longer become part of an individual’s accomplishments nor his responsibility. That is an inherently un-American position to hold. It is also ahistorical as it is grounded in the mistaken idea that absolute equality in outcome is achievable or even desirable. The promise that our nation has made to its citizens, is that there would be equality in opportunity to pursue one’s success and that each of us has the right to be treated equally before the law. Those who assert systemic racism, argue that historically, black Americans have not had equal opportunity. That is certainly true. What is however not addressed in these charges is the fact that in the late 18th century, the vast majorities of societies lived under the oppression of absolutism and mercantilism. Slavery and indentured servitude were prevalent on every continent and aristocratic elites controlled political power. Our Constitution was created to dismantle the extreme inequalities of their time.

What was ingenious, is that the document created in 1787 has a built-in elasticity which over time has expanded far beyond its origins.  Its foundations are found in the ideas of Protestantism, Humanism, and the Enlightenment, which have unfortunately been dismissed as elitist and outdated by the current anti-racist radical agenda. Yet ,these same intellectual traditions also assert individual rights and freedoms as unalienable. That is exactly what has made America unique. 

Finally, what may be the most disconcerting about the current tenor of the discussion and is not necessarily the depth or details of the arguments made. But rather the extremism of the demands for change and the vitriol with which everyone is met who does not 100% subscribe to the most radical ideas and the entire platform of demands sans any debate or qualification. No longer is it acceptable to have open discussions on the cause and effect, the possible remedies, etc. In order to not be charged as a racist one has to refuse to stand when the national anthem is played, see all law enforcement as murderers and any white person who calls the police on a black person, justified or not, is now complicit of facilitating that person’s potential murder. That is frightening. The growing “Gleichschaltung” of policy and ideas is eerily reminiscent of what totalitarian regimes have used. Those among us who have experienced occupation and totalitarian, Socialist control, know that a country that sacrifices its own on behalf of others and even fights a bloody civil war, has to be upheld as truly exceptional.

As a nation that purportedly celebrates pluralism and the marketplace of ideas, we need to remember that we all have fought for the freedom to believe and the right to live as we choose. To counter the point that Black Americans historically have not had the same opportunities to live free and exercise their rights, the answer should not be the curtailment of  everyone else’s freedom by asserting a new orthodoxy of “group think and doctrinal speech.” America has always been admired for its celebration of individuality, non-conformity,  a “can-do” attitude, and a general flexibility of ideas. As much as it may seem soothing to everyone who has been wronged and hurt to receive retribution and to exercise that pound of flesh from the other party, abandoning the 1st amendment along with other key parts of the Constitution in favor of state sponsored economic redistribution of wealth, fueled by social media mind control, cannot be the answer. Instead we need to work together as allies and equals with mutual respect for individual choices. America has always been known for its confidence and the ability to meet challenges head-on. At what point did we descend into a nation of victims and denouncers? True victory cannot be a Socialist apocalypse of enforced adherence to a one-sided version of equality, but it must be the realization of the American promise for each of us, regardless of color or creed.

More About the Author:

Guest author, Dr. Christiane Warren, Senior Consultant at Anna J Cooper Education Advocacy Recognized for producing growth and cultivating success in the career and education space, Dr. Warren has served as tenured faculty, department chair and academic dean for entire divisions and in the Academic Affairs office at both 2-and-4 year institutions in NJ and NY. Read more about Dr. Warren here.