Taking a Stand

Liberty is For The Win can conclusively say that Donald Trump should under no circumstances be president of the United States.

After months of listening and analyzing his positions and treatment of private citizens, Liberty is For The Win can conclusively say that Donald Trump should under no circumstances be president of the United States. He has been an inconsistent ally and too often an enemy of the conservative values of Life, Liberty, and Property.

Donald Trump in his own words:

Documentary about Donald Trump abusing private citizens in Scotland over a golf course.

Donald Trump is a crony corporatist with no interest or regard in Natural Rights.

In the name of true conservative values, after long consideration of all candidates and watching the debates several times, Liberty is For The Win officially endorses the campaign of Ted Cruz, based on his consistent and ardent advocacy of true conservative principles.

Liberty is For The Win!


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What Are We Trying to Conserve?

“In some ways, the word conservative is misleading, as it implies a resistance to change. As conservatives, there is nothing we want more than change.”

In a recent conversation on Twitter, a Bernie Sanders supporter asked the question: “What are you trying to conserve?” While the question itself demonstrates the intellectual bankruptcy that plagues the left (if he doesn’t even know the conservative position, how is he so certain it’s wrong?), it still accidentally managed to hit a deeper question crucial to understanding the Culture War. Though we touched on this subject in an earlier article, it’s important enough to spend more time on. Let’s start by framing the arguments.

The left invests its energy in changing the status quo. It’s why they refer to themselves as “progressives” (among other names) in the first place, because they presume that their political theories represent cultural progress, despite having no logical basis for this certainty. Historically speaking, it’s obvious that many of their policies have demonstrably resulted in exactly the opposite of progress, including unspeakable acts of systematic barbarism. Their good and noble intentions, however, remain justification enough to them to passionately pursue their political ends.

So if the left is focused on change towards an ever elusive “better future“, is the right focused on maintaining the status quo that the left is trying so hard to deconstruct? The answer to this is obviously “No!” Every time Americans have been asked “Is America headed on the right direction?“, roughly 2 out of every 3 Americans say we are “on the wrong track“. So who would want to conserve a situation where discontent is the norm? Not us, certainly. So if not the status quo, what is it that we, as conservatives, are conserving?

Life, Liberty, and Property.

In some ways, the word conservative is misleading, as it implies a resistance to change. As conservatives, there is nothing we want more than change. Not change like the hypothetical nonsense of collectivism and socialism espoused by the left, but the fundamental political ideology that undergirded the founding of the United States espoused and illuminated by three critical figures: John Locke, Adam Smith, and Thomas Jefferson.

Up until the 1600’s, a person’s very life and livelihood were considered to be at the pleasure of their noble lords via power vested in them from their monarch, to whom all property (and people) ultimately belonged by “divine right“. In the wave of the Enlightenment, the lines between land ownership by blooded aristocrats and a growing class of merchants brought with it the dawn of Mercantilism, a political economic system where wealthy merchants, second sons and distance cousins of aristocracy, began to amass so much wealth they became political entities unto themselves. Having demonstrated that wealth could be created through trade, the monarchies of Europe established laws and measures to try to maximize their relative advantages.

This resulted in a frenzy of protectionism, imperial expansionism, colonialism, and tyrannical employment of citizens who had, for centuries, worked only to survive, covering basic needs of housing and food, and to pay taxes in the form of excess goods. People, having been the property of the State via the authority of the crown, were pressed into service to expand the wealth of not just the crown but the ever expanding ranks of wealthy merchants. Since the only way to increase real wealth was to acquire more property (land) and precious metals (gold, silver, etc.), this lead to wars that lead to the deaths of hundreds of thousands of common men and women across Europe for hundreds of years.

In the beginning of the 18th Century, John Locke was born into a world that was drenched in the blood of Europeans, Africans, Arabians and Americans all for the crowns of Europe. Though not alone, Locke becomes one of the most influential of the Enlightenment thinkers, at least in terms of American philosophy, espousing the truly revolutionary idea that not only are the People not the subjects of the monarchs and their bastard sons, but the State, in its just and proper form, should be the subject of the People. He established the idea that every man, not just the blooded elites, were entitled to the Natural Rights of “Life, Liberty, and Property“.

This idea was so revolutionary that it literally turned civilization on its head, leading directly to the revolutionary period of the late 1700’s and mid 1800’s, including the American Revolution, the French Revolution, the Mexican Revolution, and many more as the common people tried to overthrow the crowns of State. In this period, Adam Smith writes his “Theory of Moral Sentiments” and “An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations” which established the principles of capitalism, establishing the bedrock of economic freedom to go hand in hand with the political freedom of the People. Not only were property and liberty necessary to a just society, but private enterprise was a moral good that benefited everyone.

Truths That Are Self-Evident

It is this political, economic and moral climate that inspires Thomas Jefferson who famously coined “Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness“, combining the ideologies of Locke and Smith into a single cultural doctrine. Opportunity of happiness, via the acquisition of property, necessary and luxury, for the first time in the long and bloody history of mankind, was part of the human experience. The Constitution was designed to limit the powers of government so that it hindered these Natural Rights in the least possible fashion, and the first Amendments erected protections of these rights.

It is this that true conservatives are trying to conserve, the principles of the Enlightenment, that the individual not only has the right to his Life, Liberty, and Property, but has a moral duty to defend his and everyone else’s rights. Many political forces abroad and domestic (in both major political parties) have devoted all of their energies to eroding these principles from the face of the earth, replacing them with “needs of the many” and “it takes a village“, usurping the Natural Rights of the individual with the tyranny of the collective, a regression to a time when a person’s life was at the leisure of the State.

The attacks are ceaseless, coming from all quarters. The collectivist left are simply the most vocal and obvious enemies of Liberty, but the moderate crony corporatist Republican is just as dangerous, if not more so. Not only does the corporatist not have an ideological stake in Liberty, he has an incentive to trade the Liberty of others for political favors that protect and expand his own wealth and influence. There will always be a class of individuals with ambitions of creating a new aristocratic class and political influence peddling is the only sure way of achieving those ends.

Be ever wary of politicians who promise anything, because all of their promises come at the expense of someone else. Please remember this, friends.

Liberty is For The Win!


We just checked, and it turns out that fighting for Liberty isn’t free, because it requires time and energy to research, prepare, and propagate this message for you. Please drop just a dollar a month into the proverbial tip jar and become a Patriot Patron. Of course, don’t forget to like, subscribe, and share. Keep this fight for Liberty going! – @LibertyIsFTW

Economics Speed Round: January 2016

This is how 2015 really ended: not with a bang, but with a whimper, and an egregious amount of spinning.

A new feature on LibertyIsFTW, a no nonsense digest of the highlights of the Monthly Jobs Report for December 2015 jobs numbers. The headlines are full of the fluffing up of a lot of too little and too late.  Here’s the facts and the dots that those facts imply. This is how 2015 really ended: not with a bang, but with a whimper, and an egregious amount of spinning.

  • 292,000 jobs were created in December 2015 (again short of the 312,500 jobs necessary to fully recover jobs lost from 2008).
  • Total 2015 Q4 jobs created was 801,000, compared to a 2014 Q4 jobs of 973,000, for a decrease of 172,000 jobs, basically an entire month of jobs fewer!
  • The number of unemployed persons, at 7.9 million, was essentially unchanged in December…” This is a low ball estimate. Even the wild eyed socialist, Bernie Sanders, acknowledged this number is larger.
  • (T)he unemployment rate for blacks declined to 8.3 percent in December, while the rates for adult men, adult women, teenagers, whites, Asians, and Hispanics showed little or no change.” After redacting the useless U-3 number, only black unemployment showed any improvement, but their labor force participation rate remains lower than whites, despite being an average of 7 years younger than whites.
  • The civilian labor force participation rate, at 62.6 percent, was little changed in December and has shown little movement in recent months.” The percentage of people working is growing with population, but long term unemployment is not significantly reduced.
  • The number of persons employed part time for economic reasons (…”involuntary part-time workers”) was little changed…” People still cannot find full time employment.
  • Among the marginally attached, there were 663,000 discouraged workers in December, little changed from a year earlier…” This is another low ball estimate. People who have not looked for work in the prior 12 month period are not counted, which would include individuals who have given up on their prior careers and have returned to school hoping to acquire new skills for a different career. The percentage of students enrolling in college courses over the age of 25 has increased more than 35%.

There’s a lot of “little change”, “no change”, and “unchanged” in this report (as there was for most of 2015). Notice that “hope” is also remarkably in short supply in any of the recent job reports.

Liberty is For The Win!


We just checked, and it turns out that fighting for Liberty isn’t free, because it requires time and energy to research, prepare, and propagate this message for you. Please drop just a dollar a month into the proverbial tip jar and become a Patriot Patron. Of course, don’t forget to like, subscribe, and share. Keep this fight for Liberty going! – @LibertyIsFTW

Where There’s Smoke, There’s Fire.

The left has spent half a century fighting the smoke, not the fire, which is why their policies continue to fail to effectively reduce the persistent generational poverty in cities across the United States.

When we think of fire, what comes to mind? An image of acrid smoke billowing out of open windows, flames licking the blackened frames from the inky blackness within. Firemen uncoiling fire hoses, as they prepare to battle the flames. A sense of dread, as we wonder if anyone was hurt or lost in the fire. At no point do we wonder why do the firefighters not battle the smoke, instead of the flames? We don’t, because we know fighting the smoke would do little to nothing about the fire. It is, after all, the fire that causes the smoke.

So why do leftists spend so much time and energy fighting economic smoke?

The left’s loudest political complaint today is “income inequality“, despite the conspicuous failure of leftism to address poverty, against which then President Lyndon B. Johnson declared a War on Poverty in 1964. After over half a century of a concerted “war” on poverty, surely by now we’d have seen some results, right? But nevermind that, because poverty is old hat. Income inequality is the new poverty. Unfortunately for the left, it really isn’t, and now they are diverting attention away from the serious problem of poverty, and trying to turn the middle class into an aggrieved class.

The problem is, despite all their good intentions, the blatant failure to achieve their own stated goals of eradicating poverty highlights a fundamental misunderstanding about the nature of poverty, as the left continues to confuse the symptom (poverty) with the underlying systemic economic problems that perpetuate poverty. The left has spent half a century fighting the smoke, not the fire, which is why their policies continue to fail to effectively reduce the persistent generational poverty in cities across the United States.

Getting below the Smoke

The problems lie with the leftist conflating the short-term poverty of many Americans with the generational systemic poverty of certain minority groups. For most Americans, poverty isn’t an inescapable social caste, and this is born out by the obvious fact that a majority of people today are much wealthier than they were when they first turned eighteen. The vast amount of temporal poverty is cured by opportunity, time, education, and experience.

Systemic and generational poverty are much more serious issues in the United States, and the connections between poverty and minority status among certain ethnic groups are obvious. However, two ethnic minority groups stand out above other ethnic groups: Oriental Asians (Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese, etc.) and Indians (from India). Chinese and Koreans young adults (age 25 or older) have college education rates above 50%, and among Indians of that same age group, the college education rates are above 70%. The median Asian household earns $66,000, higher than even the $54,000 earned by white households. This fact alone debunks the “systemic racism” claim made by many progressive leftists. Did the racists forget to be racists with these groups? Apparently, because Asians (Oriental and Indian) wouldn’t otherwise be succeeding at well documented rates and levels, right? So let’s take the ludicrous accusation of “systemic racism” off of the table.

Clearly, the answer lies in cultural norms and how those have interacted with political policy. Achievement in Asian cultures is seen as consistent with their cultural identity. Asians place a lot of emphasis on obtaining means to provide for their family, often including their parents and grandparents. If Asians wanted to live a subsistence lifestyle, they could go home to where many of their parents and grandparents emigrated from. They understand and fully appreciate the economic opportunities in the United States, so this is why they have succeeded. And when you consider their cultural philosophies, there are many similarities between the “familial ambition” culture of Asian Americans and “familial/personal ambition” culture of traditional America.

Let’s look at other groups, such as Central American and South American immigrants (legal and otherwise), who have come to the United States looking for economic opportunity. Culturally speaking, the strong emphasis on familial ties and responsibilities leads to many of these immigrant workers coming to the United States to work only so that they can send much of their earnings home. Estimates vary between $23 billion and upwards to $50 billion in expatriated money. This keeps many of these workers from being able to accumulate any wealth in the United States. Highly educated immigrants have succeeded, and even poorly educated immigrants have achieved most of their financial goals (supporting their families abroad), so it is clear that while poverty in these groups is troublesome, it is also largely due to cultural norms. And many immigrants who live in poverty when they first arrive in the United States are self sustaining within a generation (twenty years).

In black communities, again strong familial bonds inform their decisions. Black Americans, as they have for generations since Emancipation, have resisted putting distance between themselves and their parents, often living within blocks of one another, generation after generation. Because of actual systemic racism in the 1940’s through the 1960’s, it was difficult for black Americans to obtain access to anything beyond a basic education. After World War II, Black Americans sought work where they could, particularly in manufacturing and textiles, two industries where education was not required.

Because these industries were primarily in large cities, because of the necessity of large labor forces, Black Americans moved to these cities in the hundreds of thousands, of course causing racial tensions to increase. From the 1960’s through the 1980’s, unemployment rates and, unsurprisingly, poverty rates among American Blacks rapidly declined. In 1979, Blacks reached 23.9% (practically one in four) of the manufacturing work force. As of 2007, however, that had dropped to 9.8% (fewer than one in ten) of the manufacturing work force.

The gap in education has reemerged, after rapidly closing for three decades, and established urban communities that were built up during the manufacturing dominance of the Post-War period from 1945 through 1975 have seen their peak in the 1980’s. A larger percentage of blacks than whites have remained persistently poor since the 1990’s until today, and two generations of Black families have been raised in the manufacturing decline era since the 1980’s.

“Start back 8 feet. Aim at base of fire.”
– fire extinguisher directions

If we want to find a solution, we must first get through the smoke and find the actual fire. Yes, persistent systemic poverty is a serious issue, but it isn’t the cause of the problem. It’s merely the smoke obscuring the real fire. And that real fire is lack of opportunity for serious employment and underlying racial tensions that only exacerbate the tenuous economic conditions of those involved.

A real solution to systemic poverty is three-fold:
… First defusing the growing animosity between ethnic groups (particularly Black Americans),
… Second marketing the American culture of “familial/personal ambition” to minority culture. Part of equality requires buying into this “ambition” isn’t about ethnicity but individualism.
… Third expanding access to the marketplace through free market solutions that acknowledge the realities of a post-World War 2 era manufacturing dominance of the United States.

American skilled and unskilled workers are more than able to compete with foreign workers through productivity, they are simply being priced out of the market by some of the highest corporate taxes in the world, an ill informed Minimum Wage policy that makes it impossible for American workers to compete on price, and a well meaning but misinformed political ideology which focuses all its political energy on trying to put out the smoke, instead of focusing on the fire.

Liberty is For The Win!


We just checked, and it turns out that fighting for Liberty isn’t free, because it requires time and energy to research, prepare, and propagate this message for you. Please drop just a dollar a month into the proverbial tip jar and become a Patriot Patron. Of course, don’t forget to like, subscribe, and share. Keep this fight for Liberty going! – @LibertyIsFTW