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If You Disagree With Me, Don’t Hate Me, Debate Me!

Here is a lively exchange I had with a visitor to this blog that I thought was worth sharing.  He and I obviously have differing views on many subjects, but this visitor was courageous enough to be willing to discuss and support his beliefs in a civil, open manner.  BRAVO!  This is what freedom of speech is all about.  It’s not just about saying what you believe, but about listening to what others believe and then discussing WHY.

I’ve highlighted my comments below in crimson for clarity of who is saying what.

The original post and comments can be found here (https://texan2driver.wordpress.com/2009/11/24/obama-admin-using-bernie-madoff-accounting-pyramid-scheme/)

I am all over the web, so I can’t honestly say I remember leaving a comment on the Lone Star Times site. Regardless, I’m glad you stopped by to take part in the Great Debate. We may not always agree, and that’s OK. As I always tell people, “If you disagree with me, don’t hate me, debate me.

Wow, the post on LST must have really struck a chord. Lots of good stuff in your commentary to discuss. I’ll hit the highlights with some commentary of my own.

In fact, I consider the Bill or Rights (and particularly the 1st Amendment) the single most important document ever adopted in this Country’s history and the one thing that distinguishes us from all other nations.

We must also remember that it is the 2nd Amendment which guarantees the 1st. Our founding fathers had seen what would happen when a populace was unable to defend itself against a tyrannical government. In the founding or our country, when they spelled out in the Declaration of Independence “…That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.”, they knew that this would be impossible unless they had the power to protect themselves not only from external enemies, but from a government gaining too much control over their lives.

This makes me very, very concerned by the people who talk about making sure that America “is a Christian nation”….and who do not seem to understand that as Jefferson expressed it and as Madison wrote it—the 1st Amendment establishes a “wall between church and state.”

I will not assert that we are a Christian nation in the sense that some form of Christianity is the official religion or that it is required for citizenship. I will assert that America was founded on a Christian foundation. Many try to deny that, but it is an obvious truth. When a “wall between church and state” is spoken of, the modern (mis)interpretation of that is that there can be no religion or any display of religion in government. Hogwash. It means that the government can’t “establish,” or force you to be part of any one religion, as some countries have done by having an official state religion. Greece with the Orthodox Church is an example. What’s worse is that the modern interpretation of “separation of church and state” is applied in a very anti-Christian way. The “wallers” I’ll call them, attack Christian prayer in school, but provide prayer rooms for muslims. “Wallers” attack nativity scenes or menorahs, but force schools and government offices to display hateful “God is a fag,” or “There is no God” signs and displays. The so called separation of church and state is being used to attack Christianity and Judaism.

I see “defense” as being more than just the military might—it also includes our economic might and our moral position in the world—which, unfortunately, George W. and Chaney did much to damage.

Defense and military might? Yes. Defense and economic might? Definitely. Defense and our “moral position” in the world? Now the waters get muddy. Defense is just that. It’s our ability to prevent others from harming us. Economic might directly ties into defense as it allows us to pay for the things necessary to defend ourselves. Our moral position in the world is not tied to defending ourselves. Our interactions with other nations and our reasons for those interactions define our moral position. However, two different people could view the same action in completely different “moral” lights. Was it “moral” to drop the A-bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki? Some look at the instantaneous loss of life and scream “immoral!” However, when one understands that killing several thousand people with the A-bomb likely saved nearly 2 million lives, it’s not so immoral anymore. One must also consider who started that fight in the first place with their deception in Washington covering their sneak attack on Pearl Harbor. Many liberals view “might” as wrong. They feel that because we are (were?) wealthy and powerful, or a super-power, that this somehow makes us villains around the world. Were we taking over lands for the purposes of conquest and gain, then that would make us the bad guys. However, this is not the case. We ended two wars in Europe and one in the Pacific with multiple “invasions,” and all we asked for in return was a place to bury our dead. We didn’t enslave anyone. We protected, and still protect most of Europe and Japan (our former enemies) while they run their own lives. As for G.W. Bush and Mr. Cheney, their biggest mistake was not controlling our borders or our spending.

“Richard Nixon made me a Democrat” because of his abuse of the American system, his disregard for the Bill or Rights and his criminal activities.

To this I must ask how you feel about Barack Obama. As illustrated in the post I’m linking to here (https://texan2driver.wordpress.com/2010/04/16/obamas-secret-power-grabs/), Obama has done the end-around on every part of the constitution that he has been able to get away with so far. Cut and paste Obama’s actions into the Nixon presidency, and there would have been an execution, not just an impeachment. The progressives have gained a lot of ground since the 1970’s in eroding the foundation of our nation, as evidenced by the weak response to the abuse to our laws and constitution.

(Don’t tell me “everybody does it’. That is partially true…but few have done it to the level Nixon did.)

Many do it, and there is no excuse for it. As to the level of corruption and law breaking, again I beg you to compare Richard Nixon to Barack Obama. While Nixon was wrong and deserved punishment, what he did was child’s play compared to what Obama is doing now. Campaign fraud, voter intimidation, breaking or ignoring house/senate rules, on and on.

I also found myself unwilling to continue to argue with people who opposed Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and every other program designed to improve the life of the less fortunate of our population.

As is always the case, we were much better off before government took over control of ____ (fill in the blank). Before we had Social Security, yes there were homeless people and people who otherwise needed help, but there were a lot fewer of them. When people kept most of what they earned, they were more charitable. Through local organizations and direct giving, communities helped people by giving them a hand UP, and taking care of those UNABLE to take care of themselves. Now the government takes a dollar away from our community and gives us back 50 cents. How does that help? They have promised all these benefits that they can’t pay for. How does that help (except to buy votes)? In an attempt to pay for the benefits, they raise our taxes to the point we can’t afford to be charitable anymore. How does that help? And to top it all off, there are a WHOLE LOT MORE of the so called “less fortunate” now than there were then. Many are able, but unwilling to work because they can get enough benefits for nothing to make a minimum wage job just too “inconvenient.” Sounds like a success to me.

Then we move on to Medicare/Medicaid. Supposed to provide insurance and lower health care costs. Hasn’t done either. Before we had Medicare/Medicaid and other government interference in the medical system (as well as other confiscation of my wealth like Social Security and other taxes), I could AFFORD to go to the doctor and pay cash for a visit. If I needed a procedure that was too expensive for me to pay for outright, I worked out a payment plan with the doctor himself. Now because of government interference, forcing doctors and hospitals to provide health care to those who can’t pay for it, they have to pass the cost along to those who can. We’re not just talking legitimate emergency care here. Many illegal aliens and others, who can no longer afford insurance or medical bills BECAUSE GOVERNMENT INTERVENTION AND INTERFERENCE CAUSED THEM TO SKYROCKET, are using the emergency room for primary care. Those who actually pay their bills get pissed off about paying the tab for those who abuse the system, laws are passed saying that doctors and hospitals can’t pass along the cost, and then the hospitals and doctors simply go out of business. THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS FREE. The border states are the worst hit by this phenomena due to the unchecked influx of illegal aliens.

Health care is not a right. It is a service or commodity just like anything else we EARN the money to pay for. Calling it a right is akin to saying “slavery is OK.” Calling it a right means that you are able to force a person to become a doctor at his own expense, and then force him to provide medical service to you without compensation. That is slavery. If you say “of course he has a right to compensation,” then you are saying it’s OK to take money from me against my will to pay your medical costs. That’s robbery and theft. Rights are given from God, not from man. Having people in our government call something a “right” doesn’t make it so. A right does not come at the expense of another.

So, to sum this up, helping the “less fortunate” is a good and admirable goal. But it is a goal best accomplished by allowing the citizens of the most charitable nation on earth to decide for themselves to help those people out. The government is at best inefficient at the task, and typically fails miserably.

One last thing on this topic. Don’t confuse “lack of success” with being “unfortunate.” If you worked to EARN what you have, and you have more than the next person, you have no reason to feel guilty about that.

(Plus you may remember that Southern Republicans—like John Tower—opposed the Civil Rights Act just as strongly as did most Southern Democrats—except the same Ralph Yarborough we both admire for his courage.)

Just remember that it was republicans, even southern republicans that gave blacks the right to vote, and it was democrats that took that right away with things like “poll taxes.” It was democrats who founded such organizations as the KKK, and it is liberal/progressive/democrat policies that have encouraged the black community to largely sit around feeling like victims with their hands out to the democrats. When a black person makes something of him/herself, the democrats and the blacks who support them immediately turn on that person and call them “Uncle Tom,” or “a sellout to the black community.” What a bunch of crap. Bill Cosby is right. Unless people take responsibility for their own actions, their own family, and their own community, they will always be oppressed victims.

(Unlike you I can not call myself a “Carter Democrat” because, although I wound up voting for him, as a Southern Catholic who had been told one two many times by “good ole Southern Baptists” that I was doomed to hell while living in a small Texas town in the 50s, I was worried about his Southern Baptist background.

I am a Christian who associates with Southern Baptists, as long as they preach and teach what is in the Bible. I have seen many Southern Baptist churches (and those of many denominations) that do not. Just because someone is a “good ole Southern Baptist” doesn’t make them good or bad. I’m registered republican, but am really a conservative. Barack Obama sat in Jeremiah Wright’s church for 20 some years. Does that make him a Christian? No. Just because Jeremiah Wright calls himself a preacher, does make his church a Christian church? No. As a “former” muslim who preaches a radical black-nationalist message which is not supported by the Bible, many would say “definitely not.” In Jimmy Carter’s case, I would call him a liberal misguided Southern Baptist who is basically just an idiot.

However, I do believe that, if our system is to continue, we must attempt to help every American have an “equal opportunity” to succeed…..Unfortunately, I believe—as you probably do not—that that means that Government must take steps to “level the playing field”.

We are guaranteed “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” We are not guaranteed anything beyond that. We are not guaranteed a job, a house, a specific level of income, or any such thing. We are only guaranteed the right to pursue them to the best of OUR abilities, not to pursue them on the backs of someone else. Our nation was founded on getting everyone to the starting line of the race. It doesn’t guarantee how anyone will run the race, or who will win it. But to have a chance of winning, you must run. Barack Obama and liberals are trying to distort this by picking winners and losers in life. They are choosing which companies succeed or fail. They are choosing which people succeed or fail. This is un-American. We can’t ALL win the race, and the prize can’t be the same either. When you allow those who can achieve more to do so, they are more able to help those who can’t. When you don’t allow them to succeed, and make them pull the wagon full of those who can’t or won’t run as fast, NO ONE gets to the finish line because the achievers see no benefit to excelling because the fruits of their labors are redistributed to those who did not earn them and do not deserve them. The “playing field” as you call it, is actually level. It’s the same for everyone. It’s just that some people are more able to navigate it. That’s just the way things are. Your and others attempts to “level the playing field” are in reality attempts to force an equal outcome. That’s communism. Let’s say your IQ is off the charts on the smart end. You go to school with a bunch of people who can barely write their own name. If we level the playing field in the classroom to bring these people up from failing grades, you receive a middle of the road grade instead of the “A” that you earned. Or, the teachers dumb down the level of instruction to the lowest common denominator where everyone gets an “A.” You are bored and learn nothing, while the rest learned little because they were unwilling or unable. Everyone finished the same, but what has that gained society? We graduate a bunch of people with high self esteem until they can’t get a job because they don’t know how to make change. Our society suffers for such misguided efforts to “level the playing field.”

I am also aware of the fact that all kinds of groups have “lobbyists” and that all kinds of groups, not just conservatives try to use government to advance their ends. However, unlike you I do not automatically label this bad…Instead they are part and parcel of our form of government and,…

A politician’s job is supposed to be to represent the people who elected them. Their job has morphed into getting re-elected. Politicians spend nearly 2/3 of each business day dealing with matters related to fund raising for their re-election campaign. Much of that has to do with lobbyists. I know several politicians, and the lobbyists who lobby them. It is a corrupt game. Just calling it “part and parcel of our form of government” is exactly the same justification that Nixon could have used (and probably did) for defending the break in to a rival political headquarters to gain a political advantage. Where do we draw the line? The politicians are beholden to the special interest groups and the money they donate to their campaign rather than to the constituents who elected them. This is where I throw out the hand grenade of term limits. Many will say that we have term limits called “elections.” I would say that this would be true if we still had a nation of CITIZENS. A citizen educates him/herself on the issues, on the candidates, on our system of government, on the constitution on which it is based, and casts a responsible vote. Today we have an increasing number of people who know nothing about the things listed above, and cast votes base on misinformation that they willingly believe because they have allowed themselves to be led astray largely due to their own laziness and ignorance. This is also where we see the rapid rise of the zero-liability voter who pays little or no tax yet has a voice in how TAXPAYERS dollars are spent, usually to give the zero-liability voter more “free” stuff. It’s a vicious political cycle centered around the acquisition and maintenance of POWER. The founding fathers never intended the words “career” and “politician” to be uttered in the same sentence. Elected officials were intended to REPRESENT their constituents for a season while the issues were fresh on their minds. Then they were to return home and go back to whatever life they had, or make a new one if they so chose. They were never intended to make a fat life in Washington at our expense.

“be very, very careful when you have a group that wants to be regulated.”

I’ve heard it said that “you don’t f*** with a man that sleeps next to a woman he never screws. They’re unpredictable.” The only groups I see that want regulation are the ones who are unable or unwilling to achieve success on their own. Refer back to the “level playing field discussion above.

Instead it makes me a realist.

I’ve also heard it said “No, I’m not a pessimist. At some point the world sh**s on everybody. Pretending it ain’t sh** makes you an idiot, not an optimist.” If you view your glass as half empty, you are called a pessimist. If you view your glass as half full, you are called an optimist. If it doesn’t matter to you whether you say your glass is half empty or half full, but you know you must guard against some idiot coming along and spilling it or drinking it, THEN you are a REALIST. That would be me.

B, thanks again for engaging in the debate and being willing to share WHY you believe what you believe. If we can’t defend our positions, why do we have them in the first place? I look forward to debating other issues with you in the future.


One Response

  1. Great post. Insightful and entertaining as always!


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