Obama Rewrites History

When history does not suit the Liberal agenda, the Left will always follow the same strategy – they rewrite it. Whether its delusional thinking on their part or simply a belief that the majority of Americans are ignorant, politicians love to give us their version of history to solidify their questionable and unconstitutional policies.

President Obama’s address to Congress this week did just that. The president told the nation that he rejected the view “that says our problems will simply take care of themselves, that says government has no role in laying the foundation for our common prosperity. For history tells a different story. History reminds us that at every moment of economic upheaval and transformation, this nation has responded with bold action and big ideas.”

This is an unbelievably false statement with no basis in reality. In fact, history tells us just the opposite. Unless you mean “bold” tax cuts and “big” spending reductions, the use of “Bold action and big ideas” to counter an economic depression did not begin until FDR’s New Deal.

“Bold actions and big ideas” have been used to treat the symptoms of every economic recession since the 1930s and the results always end up the same, more economic misery and stagnation. Our greatest periods of economic growth and activity have always come when the government lessened its role in the economy.

Throughout the 19th and early 20th centuries, the United States faced economic depressions, called “panics” in those days, in approximate 20-year intervals – 1819, 1837, 1857, 1873, 1893, 1907, and finally the big one in 1929.

And until 1929, Washington stayed out of the economy and let the free market regulate and correct itself. Bad loans made in ignorance or greed were simply lost. If bankers mismanaged their institutions, they paid the price, and that price was being out of business. There were no government bailouts to cover mistakes and stupidity. But they knew that going in.

Capitalism is a brutal, cutthroat system, and most liberals refuse to understand it. To be successful, you must be smart, innovative, efficient, hardworking, or otherwise you will lose your shirt. Capitalism is a system for winners and achievers, a system whose rewards are great if you put forth the effort. On the other hand, socialism, to be blunt, is a system for losers. Socialism rewards the slothful, the ignorant, and those with no ideas or initiative. It rewards, to those who do nothing, handouts from the government off the backs of someone else’s hard work. It has never been the American way.

Early Americans understood this perfectly and did not look to government to close the gap between achievers and non-achievers. America was an idea, a place where you were free to pursue your own happiness, so long as you did not infringe on the rights of others. Every American has a right to pursue happiness; no one has any right to demand it.

During the early economic downturns, the federal government reacted with these ideals in mind.

President Martin Van Buren responded to the Panic of 1837 by cutting taxes and reducing government. In his annual message to Congress that year, he reminded the members that the founders “wisely judged that the less government interferes with private pursuits the better for the general prosperity.” He also began the effort to totally separate the government from banks, rather the opposite approach we have chosen today. As a result, the panic did not last nearly as long as it could have.

In 1893 another severe depression struck the nation, which many historians and economists contend was every bit as strong as the 1930s. Unemployment hit 20 percent, 16,000 businesses closed, 150 railroads went into receivership, and 600 banks went out of business. President Cleveland responded with a laissez faire approach that lessened its effects, refusing to use government programs to intervene. As a result, the depression was over quickly and did not last nearly as long as the Great Depression, though it was nearly as bad in many ways. The nation’s GNP stood at $13.3 billion in 1893 and by 1894 had dropped to $12 billion. However, by 1896 the nation had nearly regained all losses, and by the next year, 1897, had surpassed its 1893 level.

Obama went on to list the “bold action and big ideas” we supposedly embarked on in times of economic trouble. “In the midst of civil war,” he said, “we laid railroad tracks from one coast to another that spurred commerce and industry.”

Actually, this took place after the war. The vast majority of railroad track in existence in the United States was laid during the late 19th century.

Railroad corporations were the quintessential “big business” of its day, the Wal-Mart, Microsoft, and Enron of the late 19th century. They were the beneficiaries of large government subsidies but were also unbelievably corrupt and inefficient. Of the five transcontinental railroads built during that time period, only one did not end up in bankruptcy, and that was James J. Hill’s Great Northern, which operated free of government handouts. It was also the most efficient and the least expensive of the five.

And though it is true that the railroads helped spur the explosive economic growth of that time period, it was also an era of unfettered capitalism. There were almost no regulations or taxes on businesses that would hamper growth. It was this laissez faire approach, and not government aid, that caused the great economic boom of the late 19th century.

The United States went from being a second-rate economy to the greatest on earth, leading the world in manufacturing, mining, commerce, and agriculture by 1900. Deriving revenue from tariffs and excise taxes was sufficient enough for the federal government to run a budget surplus every year from 1866 to 1893, the year of the economic panic. Though this has been lost on the Left.

“In each case,” President Obama continued, “government didn’t supplant private enterprise, it catalyzed private enterprise. It created the conditions for thousands of entrepreneurs and new businesses to adapt and to thrive.” Yes, Mr. President, the government can be a catalyst, but not with government action. The catalyst early Americans used was government inaction. The more the government stayed out of the free enterprise system, the more prosperous the nation would become. Let individuals pursue their own dreams and the whole of society will benefit.

But Obama and the Democrats do not believe in any economic policies based on laissez faire capitalism. Obamanomics holds, as does its twin brother Keynesianism, that government can stimulate economic growth with spending programs, particularly deficit spending. The catalyst Obama refers to is a massive infusion of cash into the economy through spending, a recipe that has never worked and if used too much will most certainly bring on massive inflation.

During the severe recession of 1919-1920, a downturn that could have very easily plunged the country into a depression, if it wasn’t one already, President Harding and his treasury secretary, Andrew Mellon, responded by massively cutting both taxes and spending, rather than using a government “catalyst” of new programs. The top tax rate under Woodrow Wilson stood at 70 percent, but Harding cut it to 25. The federal budget also saw a cut of 40 percent. We can’t even get a cut of one percent today.

The Harding administration also reduced immigration to cut down on the number of workers available for the fewer jobs available in the market. The result was the greatest economic boom in peacetime in American history. British historian Paul Johnson notes that Harding’s response was “the last time a major industrial power treated a recession by classic laissez-faire methods.”

“Now is the time to act boldly and wisely – to not only revive this economy, but to build a new foundation for lasting prosperity.”

And finally, Mr. President, we need no “new foundation.” The old one worked just fine, as long as it was adhered to. Americans are the smartest, most innovative, creative, and hardworking people in the world. Yes, we can do it, but without government help. Earlier Americans created the greatest engine of economic growth in the history of the planet, all from a frontier wilderness without any help from government. When American know-how is unleashed, so too will be a revival of the American economy.

Happy Birthday, Charlie!

In one of the unique facts of history, two of the most influential men in world history, Abraham Lincoln and Charles Darwin, were born on the same day, February 12, 1809. Last week marked their 200th anniversary, to which Lincoln has stolen most of the show, but Darwin should have received his due, as Darwinism continues to exact an enormous amount of influence in the world, particularly when the Left needs a club to bash Christianity.

Make no mistake, Darwinism is the Left’s baby. To a liberal it’s akin to religious dogma and must be taught in public schools. But Christians must wage an all-out fight, including court action, to teach creationism. The Left does not even want public school students to be free thinkers and decide the matter for themselves, after having been presented both sides of the argument fair and equally.

Yet, when it comes to other issues, such as global warming, the environment, and public welfare, liberals conveniently leave out Darwin altogether, seeking to separate them from Darwinism, as if it were distinct from what he intended. This is usually referred to as Social Darwinism – the application of Darwin’s theories to other areas of society.

But, despite the Left’s propaganda campaign, the two are actually one and the same. They attempt to propagate the lie that only a handful of heartless monsters twisted Darwin’s theories to suit their own evil desires. It’s just another example of liberal hypocrisy.

For example, it is often remarked, especially in the world of academia, that Darwin was not talking about humans in his book, On the Origins of Species. This fact is true but human beings were implied if you consider the subtitle of the book – By Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life. Most professors never bother to point out this brutal subtitle. I found it out on my own when examining an older copy of the book. Newer reprints often do not include the subtitle at all!

Liberal scholars also conveniently forget that Darwin wrote a second book, The Descent of Man (1871), where mankind was the subject.

And if you think Darwin did not apply any of his theories to humans, consider this gem from The Descent of Man:

“With savages, the weak in body or mind are soon eliminated; and those that survive commonly exhibit a vigorous state of health. We civilized men, on the other hand, do our utmost to check the process of elimination; we build asylums for the imbecile, the maimed, and the sick; we institute poor-laws; and our medical men exert their utmost skill to save the life of every one to the last moment. There is reason to believe that vaccination has preserved thousands, who from a weak constitution would formerly have succumbed to small-pox. Thus the weak members of civilized societies propagate their kind. No one who has attended to the breeding of domestic animals will doubt that this must be highly injurious to the race of man. It is surprising how soon a want of care, or care wrongly directed, leads to the degeneration of a domestic race; but excepting in the case of man himself, hardly any one is so ignorant as to allow his worst animals to breed.”

Hitler could not have said it better. He was a passionate believer in Darwinism and survival of the fittest. The whole of Nazi philosophy was centered on natural selection. But most of the geniuses constituting the Left do not realize this (or maybe they do but think we are so stupid not to ever find out). These crazies drive around in their cars with the ridiculous Darwin stickers and magnets on the back for all to see, but it might as well be a swastika.

Another of the Left’s icons, Friedrich Nietzsche, of “God is dead” fame, who was also a Darwinist, wrote that should we “preserve all that was sick and that suffered” then we would “worsen the European race.”

Liberals conveniently forget about these gems.

The Left also dumps Darwin when it comes to issues like the promotion of big business and welfare programs. Applying Darwinism to economics would allow for monopolies and prevent any public assistance to the needy, to which Darwin would have approved.

A British philosopher named Herbert Spencer applied Darwin’s theory to the business world, arguing that the brightest, the most energetic, and the most imaginative business tycoons would survive the brutal rigors of capitalism and the weak would fail and end up in bankruptcy. The strong businesses would become stronger, and as a result, the whole of society benefited. This philosophy found wide acceptance among the wealthy tycoons in late 19th century America, as it seemed to justify what they were doing and how they had arrived at such a high station in life.

A Yale professor, William Graham Sumner, wrote about this philosophy in a 1902 essay entitled “The Concentration of Wealth: Its Economic Justification”:

“What matters it then that some millionaires are idle, or silly, or vulgar, that their ideas are sometimes futile, and their plans grotesque, when they turn aside from money-making? How do they differ in this from any other class? The millionaires are a product of natural selection, acting on the whole body of men, to pick out those who can meet the requirement of certain work to be done. They get high wages and live in luxury, but the bargain is a good one for society.”

Poverty and slums, then, were the unfortunate consequences of this competitive struggle but poverty should only be temporary. Only the slothful, lazy, ignorant, unfit, and defective people would not rise from poverty and the state should not intervene to alleviate or attempt to eliminate poverty because that would negate the good effect of natural selection, where the strong survive and the weak perish. Nature’s process must be allowed to run its course.

During the late 18th century, Europeans were worried that a massive population surge over the previous 100 years could have devastating consequences, namely that there would not be enough food to feed everyone. An economic philosopher, Thomas Malthus, came up with one possible solution in a 1798 pamphlet entitled “Essay on Population.” Malthus believed that the population would grow too quickly for the earth to supply enough food and mass starvation would be the result.

Therefore, the government should not attempt to relieve the condition of the lower classes by increasing their incomes or improving agricultural productivity, as the extra means of subsistence would be completely absorbed by an induced boost in population.  As long as this tendency remained, Malthus argued, the “perfectibility” of society will always be out of reach.  And perfectibility, or Utopia, has always been the ultimate goal of socialists.

But in the 1840’s, it looked as though Malthus might be right, as Ireland experienced a potato famine beginning in the fall of 1845. Ireland had experienced food shortages before, usually lasting a few months, but never anything like this. It came to be known as the “Great Hunger” and lasted until 1849. One million Irish fled to the United States during the famine, while another million emigrated over the next few decades. Records are not available but it is widely believed that anywhere from 500,000 to 2,000,000 died in the famine. Although the British government instituted some assistance programs, for the most part it did nothing to help, believing in the validity of Malthus’ theory, as well as that of Darwin.

During the same time period, the economist David Ricardo, applying Darwin to economics, maintained that the wages of laborers should be kept at the lowest possible level because their high rate of reproduction ensured a surplus supply of labor. In other words, wages should be kept low and government should not set any type of minimum wage.

Ricardo also advocated a restriction of the so-called “Poor Laws.” These had originally been passed by the British Parliament in the early nineteenth century to bring relief to the poorer classes in British society.

But in our modern era, to advocate anything like Darwinism regarding liberal issues would essentially destroy your career.

In 2007, Dr. James Watson, the 79-year-old co-winner of the 1962 Nobel Prize for medicine, saw his tenure canceled at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory on Long Island, where he taught for four decades, as well as a book tour promoting his latest work. The prestigious Science Museum in London canceled a scheduled lecture, all for a remark that was pale in comparison to anything the Brit Darwin ever said.

Dr. Watson told The Sunday Times in October 2007 that he was “inherently gloomy about the prospect of Africa” because “all our social policies are based on the fact that their intelligence is the same as ours – whereas all the testing says not really.” He said there was a natural desire that all human beings should be equal but “people who have to deal with black employees find this not true.”

His views are also reflected in his newest book Avoid Boring People: Lessons from a Life in Science, in which he writes: “There is no firm reason to anticipate that the intellectual capacities of peoples geographically separated in their evolution should prove to have evolved identically. Our wanting to reserve equal powers of reason as some universal heritage of humanity will not be enough to make it so.”

Hadn’t Darwin reasoned much the same way, that there are races that have not been able to measure up to others? This is not to accuse Dr. Watson of being a Darwinist or even a racist, for I don’t believe he is one. He is only drawing conclusions from the scientific data, as was Darwin.

So why is Darwin a God of the Left but Watson a child of the devil?

In today’s society, the slightest instance, the tiniest utterance, however innocent it might be, if directed toward a protected group can lead to being branded a racist, the 21st century equivalent of a Scarlet Letter, which can ruin any career in any field. Ask Dr. Watson, ask Trent Lott, if you think it not so. Though neither can be considered racist, Darwin was every bit as racist as the most vile among us.

The Left invokes Darwin when it is useful, such as bashing creationism and Christianity in general, but conveniently puts him in the closet when it does not suit their immediate political needs in regards to other issues, like promoting victim-hood.

Darwinism is incompatible with Christianity. You cannot be a Darwinian Christian, for Jesus is the very antithesis of Darwin, teaching to help the poor, the weak, and the sick, though I don’t think he meant for the government to do it, only his Church.

So either you are a Darwinist or you are not. Either you believe all men are created equal, as Christ did, or you believe that they are not, as Darwin clearly did. We must either use Darwinism in all its sick and twisted ways, or we place him where he truly belongs, on the ash heap of history.