One Idea, One Word, and One Republic

If these people cannot be bothered to reclaim something as simple as a word, how do they fool themselves into believing that they can ever hope to reclaim their nation?

Among the intricate threads of history, the tapestry of Western Civilization has ever been woven in blood and conquest, as imperial expansionism endlessly drove one group of people into ever fractious contact with other groups of people. If the crown jewel of ancient Western Civilization, the Roman Empire, itself the bloody progeny of the Roman Republic, can be considered the political, philosophical, and technological zenith of the ancient Europeans, then the person of Marcus Aurelius can be considered the its highest achievement.

The Emperor who died twice, Marcus Aurelius’s rule was the last of the “Five Good Emperors” of Rome, leaving behind a legacy of imperial expansion, military stability, and the height of Greco-Roman philosophy, Stoicism. His life was quintessentially Roman, and his life story remains one of the lasting examples of the very “best” of the Western Civilization that would inform the Renaissance over a thousand years later.

“Do not act as if you were going to live ten thousand
years. Death hangs over you. 
While you live,
while it is in your power, 
be good.”
-Marcus Aurelius-

Marcus was always known as a thinker, a product and avid student of both Greek and Latin traditions. His “Meditations” are rightfully considered the equal to the likes of Socrates and Aristotle. He was both a conscientious and judicious ruler, and, above all, a product of the civilization from which he came. Though, in reality, it may be his own personal experience, as much as the society that bore him, that informed the man and Emperor that he would become.

Ever since he was a young man, Marcus Aurelius struggled with a chronic ailment that left him weak and in physical pain his entire life. Where such continuous illness may have left some bitter and angry, Marcus approached his constant physical discomfort philosophically. Over the course of his life, he continued to develop and expand this personal philosophy to all adversity in his life, both personal and political.

The great tragedy of Marcus Aurelius’s life, however, came at its end. After dedicating most of his adult life to pacifying the powerful and savage tribes of “Germania“, it was Marcus’s great hope to, once and for all, end the threat to Roman civilization posed by these fierce and uncivilized cultures that had been battling the Roman legions for centuries. These wild and comparatively brutish societies had carved out large territories in the dense European forests at the edges of the Roman Empire.

With the end of these centuries long conflicts in sight, Marcus entrusted his son, Commodus, with the task of securing lasting security for Rome. Upon Marcus Aurelius’s death, however, the seventeen year old Commodus walked away from cold and death of Germania and devoted himself instead to the pleasures and distractions of Rome that his father had largely denied himself. Where Marcus Aurelius had dedicated himself to philosophy and the security of Rome, Commodus dedicated himself to lavish living and bloated egotism, going so far as renaming Rome, her holdings and even the Legions after himself.

After just thirteen years as Emperor, Commodus, the heir of Marcus Aurelius, was strangled to death in his bath, and centuries later, the heirs of the same savage tribes of Germania that Marcus Aurelius had dedicated his life to fighting, sacked Rome, plunging Europe into over a thousand years of darkness.

“How much time he gains who does not look to
see what his neighbor says or does or thinks,
but only at what he does himself,
to make it just and holy.”

-Marcus Aurelius, Meditations-

While the parallels of the last “Good Emperor” of Rome, his misbegotten heir, and the agonizing slow and bloody decline of Rome to the events and characters of our present national crisis should be painfully clear, there is a cultural and philosophical context that must not be missed. History does not necessarily have to repeat itself, and those that wish to defend Western Civilization must do what Commodus, in his time, and our present political leaders, in our time, have failed to do.

At over two centuries old, our Republic is no longer young, but it isn’t old when compared to the over eight centuries of the Roman Republic and later Roman Empire. Though we have clearly lost our way culturally and politically from the ideals of the Founding, by learning from the wisdom of Marcus Aurelius and ignorance of Commodus, we can yet avert and, with luck, reverse the decline of our own civilization. Domestically, the Culture War has, especially for the last century, gone increasingly in favor of those who grand stand politically for their own benefit.

While social equality and political justice have vastly improved for many who have been denied both for so long, the government has in the meantime increasingly encroached upon the very principles of individual liberty that not only gave birth to our nation, but provided the very bedrock upon which the celebrated advancement of justice and equality was built. The great tragedy of our time is that, over the course of just a single century, the ideology of our Founding Fathers has become demonized by the people who claim to love the Founders most and defiled by those who claim to love the Founders least.

“The object of life is not to be on the side
of 
the majority, but to escape finding
oneself 
in the ranks of the insane.”
-Marcus Aurelius, Meditations-

Few other words in the American vernacular provokes such visceral responses from both sides of the political divide as does the word “Liberal“. American Collectivists long ago claimed the term for themselves, contorting the social, political, and philosophical values of the ideology to fit their government centered ideology, while purging the values of individual liberty and sovereign property rights from the term. This usurpation of not just a word, but the Founding ethic of our Republic, would have been impossible, except for the unwitting ignorance of their opposition.

Americans who think themselves the political progeny of the Founding Fathers, as well as the political opposition of Collectivists who have come to dominate our politics, have capitulated the usage of “Liberal” to the Left. Now when these self described “patriots” use the word “Liberal“, it’s usually as a short hand for the very Leftism, Communism, and Collectivism they oppose. These people inject the word with all the partisan venom they can muster, casting the word from their mouth like a rotten morsel of meat.

Even when these people are shown the truth, these people still cling to their prejudices and habits, spitting the word like a curse from their lips, and just like that, the ideology the word represents remains cut off from them. If these people cannot be bothered to reclaim something as simple as a word, how do they fool themselves into believing that they can ever hope to reclaim their nation?

#TakeBackOurWord

george-washington

Liberty is For The Win!


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Marxist America

In a country once founded upon Locke’s “Life. Liberty. Property.”, we’ve become a nation shockingly comfortable with policy that is rooted in “From each according to his ability, to each according to his need.”

Among the dying embers of absolute monarchism arose two new political ideologies, both, in their own ways, a response to the autocracy that had been the dominant form of government since the dawn of human civilization. Philosophically, at least, both rejected the idea of privileged political classes that is the hallmark of absolute monarchism and, more or less, sought to level the moral and political playing field between the “common man” and his government.

It is how each ideology addresses the problem of moral and political station of the “common man” that defines them. The first ideology, Individualism, was born from the western classical Liberal tradition of Adam Smith and John Locke. Individualism took the sovereign rights long denied the “common man” by tyrannical monarchs and granted them to the everyone. Rights to their lives, to freedom of action and expression, as well as to property and acquisition of wealth, once reserved entirely to a tiny political class, was granted to everyone.

The second ideology, Collectivism, was born of societies still largely under the thumb of diffuse but deeply entrenched political and religious controls. Beginning with thinkers like Charles Fourier and culminating with Karl Marx, Collectivism saw the sovereign rights possessed by the tyrannical monarchs as the main moral defect of monarchism. In their utopian theory, sovereignty itself is eliminated. The individual’s value is inherent not in himself but comes from the community of which he is a part. Thus ownership is greed. Freedom is hubris. Life is expendable.

These differences between Individualism and Collectivism have been at the heart of the Culture War (as well as numerous actual wars) around the world since the late 19th Century. In America, a country founded unambiguously upon Individualism, it has been tension between these two ideologies that has driven political debate since Theodore Roosevelt through Franklin Roosevelt and beyond. The Culture War in America is ultimately still the same old philosophical battle.

That war, however, is largely over, and Collectivism, not Individualism, has won.

“…Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.”
-Thomas Jefferson-

That Collectivism has won the Culture War will shock many who believe themselves “right of center“, but the fact of the matter should be obvious. Many of these “right of center” people support government regulating every employment contract, no matter how minor, throughout the United States. They believe government has a role in protecting domestic industries from a global market place. Worst of all, they defend the morally reprehensible systematic confiscation of private property from every worker.

In a country once founded upon Locke’s “Life. Liberty. Property.“, we’ve become a nation shockingly comfortable with policy that is rooted in “From each according to his ability, to each according to his need.” These people can’t comprehend of a nation without the government injecting itself into the commercial and private contracts of the people, because, wait for it, “what about the needs of society“? On a fundamental but unconscious level, their only question is how much of our “unalienable rights” is really alienable.

Do we, as a nation, believe that two parties have an unalienable right to decide for themselves what a fair and proper contract is without the involvement of “collective society“? Clearly not. Do we, as a nation, believe that it is morally wrong to impose upon our countrymen the cost government that outstrips its revenues every year enough to stop imposing upon our countrymen? Unequivocally not. Do we, as a nation, “prefer dangerous freedom over peaceful slavery” enough to forgo intrusive government regulation and taxation to support agencies that are bankrupting us? Demonstrably, this is no longer the case.

“There are two distinct classes of men –
those who pay taxes and those who
receive and live upon taxes.”
-Thomas Paine-

So Collectivism has won, and positions espoused by voices such as this one you are reading now are accused of being “fringe” and “extremist“, even as we quote directly from the writings of Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, George Washington, Thomas Paine, John Locke, Benjamin Franklin, and all of the other Founding Fathers. Is it that vocal voices of Individualism really are “fringe” or is it that Collectivism has crept, inch by inch into the national psyche and finally burrowed deep enough to become the accepted norm in America?

Call me an anarchist, because I believe taxation is theft? Call me an extremist, because I believe the government is always an enemy of the people? Call me a radical, because I believe that I am endowed by my Creator with unalienable rights and demand that my “countrymen” stop alienating them? Call me unrealistic because I retain the Spirit of Resistance necessary to fight for the Individualism of America’s founding? So be it. I’m in good company.

“Government, even in its best state, is but a necessary evil;
in its worst state, an intolerable one.”
-Thomas Paine-

Liberty is For The Win!


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A Short Word: Guilty As Charged

So I am evil, apparently.

I’m told by the Left that I’m evil, because I don’t believe in failed political and economic fantasies that have provably destroyed the lives of millions of the poor and minorities in the United States alone who have been sold a lie for over a century. I’m told by the Right that I’m evil, because I don’t believe in a tyrannical autocrat who justifies his personal attacks and vile bigotry with flag waving and nationalistic jingoism harking back to the same fascist European imperialism that our grandfathers fought and died to defeat less than a century ago.

I’m evil because I believe that the proper role of government should be leaving you, me, and everyone else alone, and that their hands should be more than full with building roads and securing borders, neither of which they seem interested in doing anymore. I’m evil, because I believe that the government should no more write a check to Goldman Sachs than it should to Solyndra. I’m evil because I don’t believe it should cost $15,000 and 15 years to become a US citizen, limiting the “land of the free” to the world’s elite, while turning our backs on the “huddled masses yearning to breathe free“.

I’m evil, because I believe that who I contract, congregate, contemplate, or copulate with is none of the government’s business, so long as both parties are legally consenting, and no one is harmed. I’m evil, because I believe that the Founding Fathers understood that most people, push come to shove, will abandon rule of law and liberty for autocracy and tyranny, just to feel safe.

I’m not suggesting I’m absolutely good. God knows that I’ve done plenty of actual evil in my lifetime. I’ve done and said things that are both evil and wrong, and that cross I must bear, while I try to give it all to Jesus one splinter at a time. But as far as people saying I’m evil, because I demand to be free?

All I can say to them is molon labe.

Sic semper evello mortem tyrannis!

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

Playing the Hand You’re Dealt

Though relatively small in number, Conservatives have the philosophical high ground but have a very narrow window of opportunity.

We have seen in America a huge shift in the basic fabric of political speech, and that’s been for too many people to shove cotton into their ears and scream as loud as they can at their opposition as if the right to freedom of thought or conscience no longer exists. It has been more than a little troubling when the utopian Progressives did it. It is a serious threat to the future of the republic now that the authoritarian Nationalists are doing it, too. No, seriously, please hear me out. If this trend continues, we are looking at the end of the republic.

For the last thirty to forty years, the Progressives have been disinterested in listening to the arguments of anyone that disagreed with them. In the last twenty years, the last two generations of collectivist Progressives have become openly hostile to any opinion that failed to conform to their myopic world view. This fascist extremism of the far left took over the Democratic Party, as people like Michael Moore, Lawrence O’Donnell, and Howard Dean became the mainstream voices of the Democratic Party.

These outspoken leftists not only committed themselves to this broad based ad hominem (personal attack against the arguer, rather than the argument) attack on anyone that disagreed with their extreme Progressive ideology, labeling anyone that disagreed with them as evil bigots and racists, they made it culturally acceptable to use such hyperbolic attacks against any political opponents. Through their concerted efforts, through media cabals and long standing relationships with political figures in their movement, they have made civil discussion not only unpopular but practically impossible.

If millions of people are going to be called bigots or racists no matter what they do, some percentage of them are going to decide that it’s better to do the crime that the Progressives are penalizing them for, embracing the label, rather than continue to try to fight it. The white nationalists, who had been relegated to the fringes of political discourse since the 1970’s, suddenly found themselves relevant again, resurgent in the face of the demonstrable failures of multiculturalism. In essence, the Progressives have enabled the very monster that they thought they were fighting for the last fifty years, and they’ve no way to deal with it.

“We are each our own devil, and we make this world our hell.”
-Oscar Wilde-

While this seems like a huge opportunity for Conservatives, there are simply too few issues that authoritarian Nationalists and traditional Conservatives have in common. Worse still, these new Nationalists are openly hostile to core principles of Conservatism, such as unfettered capitalism, free international trade, and the fundamental moral equality of all men and women, regardless of creed, race, or gender. There are simply no bridges that can span these ideological divides, and the Nationalists simply aren’t interested in hearing our ideas in the first place. With their newfound political ascendancy, the Nationalists have adopted the same shrieking intolerance of dissent that spawned them.

Let’s be absolutely clear, so that there is no confusion. The Nationalist ideology is every bit a Leftist ideology as the Marxist or the Fascist ideologies they stand against. All of the ideologies depend on the same strong central state authority to achieve their economic and political ends. Protectionism, a cornerstone of Nationalism, itself depends on a strong national government to monitor and restrict trade. Nationalism is also as necessarily intolerant of dissent, except dissenters aren’t simply labeled as “bad people“, as Progressives are fond of doing, but as outright “enemies of the state“, a label that has a history of far more serious consequences.

As Conservatives, we now find ourselves engaged in a two front war of ideas against Progressives and Nationalists, in a high stakes, winner take all game of political brinkmanship. We have to be on deck and on message. Unfortunately, confusion and misunderstanding of our political ideology has brought us to this point, but there is a silver lining to these political developments. Our vocal opposition to authoritarian Nationalism and blind Traditionalism is our ticket to finding much needed common cause with the Left, which will at least buy their ear for a moment.

In this very brief moment, we have a chance to give voice to classical liberalism that is at the heart of true Conservatism. For the sake of the republic and of the cause of Liberty, we cannot waste this opportunity.

“You can always judge a man by the quality of his enemies.”
-Oscar Wilde-

There is no room for error. Though relatively small in number, Conservatives have the philosophical high ground but have a very narrow window of opportunity. You, patriot, must know who you are and what you stand for. The entire purpose of LibertyIsFTW.org is to provide ideological ammunition and guidance necessary to those engaged in the Culture War. It is not only a resource but a weapon of knowledge against the falsehoods of Progressives and Nationalists. Now, more than ever, your support is not only necessary, it is the only way to insure that the message of Liberty reaches a nation clearly starving for it.

With your $1.00 a month, seriously, it’s just $1.00 a MONTH donation, you will not only let me know that this message matters to you more than a cup of coffee, you’ll help to pay for promotion of this message on social media platforms, which will extend our front lines across the American political battlegrounds. It doesn’t happen without your help. How much is the fight for Liberty worth to you? If it’s really less than $1.00 a month, then how serious are you about winning the Culture War?

I leave it in your hands, patriots. Are you in?

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