“Collective bargaining is a misguided labor policy,” the Cato Institute’s Chris Edwards comments in an article titled “Cato Institute Allied with SEIU? Not Quite.” The Weekly Standard article says all one needs to know about the inefficiencies, waste, and often thuggishness and fraud of unions. Americans will be well served in searching out the rigorous, original research findings of the Cato Institute rather than misquotes from political groups like Crossroads. Edwards was a featured speaker at a recent Cato policy get-together I attended in Naples. Chris did a great job providing attendees with a straightforward explanation of the sorry state of American indebtedness.
The Cato Institute is a policy think-tank, not a political organization. Cato is not a cheerleader for political candidates; rather it is a champion of liberty, freedom, small central government, and a non-interventionist foreign policy. If you’ve read any of my ongoing writings, you can see why I am a Cato benefactor and a powerful supporter of the group’s mission. As we approach the 2012 political season, I believe that candidates who embrace the principles of Cato are going to gain the attention of the American voter. I view the Tea Party as the group most likely to benefit from the policy work generated by Cato. In the next election liberty, freedom, small central government, and a noninterventionist foreign policy is a theme that should resonate well with Americans. States’ rights, term limits, an end to the Fed, an originalist reading of our Constitution, and the power of the second amendment are associated themes that the Tea Party will be comfortable embracing.
Cato makes it clear that it is not a political group. I, on the other hand, plan to take a firm stand on the issue of qualified candidates. I represent conservative small-business owners and retired and soon-to-be-retired folk who have accumulated substantial capital through decades of independent effort. As such, I have an axe to grind, a horse in the race.
Researching the thinking of our founders offers great insight. For my money, Thomas Jefferson, Richard Henry Lee, Patrick Henry, George Mason, Nathaniel Macon and John Taylor of Caroline were six founders with much to offer Americans supporting liberty, freedom small central government and states’ rights. On the spectrum’s opposite end, I have found the thinking of Alexander Hamilton and, even more so, John Marshall (Supreme Court justice) to be at odds with the principles I embrace. Marshall was truly the architect of big government and the grandfather of activist judges like today’s Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer.
To decide whether or not a candidate is worth considering, you can use my quick liberty and freedom test. Simply inquire as to what a candidate’s views are on Marshall and Hamilton and whether the candidate is positive or negative on the thinking of Richard Henry Lee and John Taylor of Caroline. I omit Mr. Jefferson here because Jefferson was so profoundly competent in so many areas that it is easy to speak well of Jefferson while not embracing Jeffersonian principles. It is also likely that a candidate will not have heard of Richard Henry Lee or John Taylor of Caroline, which instantly exposes him as lacking. And if a candidate can offer an opinion on one or both, it had better be positive. There is no mistaking the powerful states’ rights and liberty and freedom approach of either man. On the issues cited, these two founders were as outspoken, clear and forceful as any of the founders. If you are not familiar with either Richard Henry Lee or John Taylor of Caroline, I know you will benefit mightily from learning about each.
As for John Marshall, there are not words to describe the damage this single justice did for the liberty, freedom, states’ rights and small government cause. When you question candidates on their thinking on Justice Marshall and there is so much as a pause or an inkling of positive thought, look out. You are looking at a candidate who will do you wrong in more ways than you will ever have time to count in a lifetime.
We are all told that a third party movement is not workable because it could not capture any House or Senate seats. Historically, that is so. I think, however, that it is time to write some new history in America. Today Americans are offered (A) a big government (see No Child Left Behind/Medicare monster) interventionist Republican Party in bed with the neo-cons (see Project for a New American Century), or (B) a Democratic party strongly influenced by the policies of Karl Marx and Saul Alinsky. And in the background we have an incestuous new-world-order crowd strongly influenced by moveon.org and a United Nations front. I don’t know about you, but I want no part of any of the above. And I think there are enough Americans who join me in lacking respect for the major parties, that a third party could, in the internet era, simply overwhelm the status quo. How about “The Founders Party”? Does that have a good ring to it? And how about a platform that starts with term limits, a national right to work law, a dumping of the tax code, the beginning of a methodical pull out of American troops from foreign soil, and the repeal of NAFTA. Sound like a good start? I have the rest of the platform laid out in detail, including a hard-line energy plan.
Does any non-self-serving American think our country has not regressed mightily under the Bush and Obama administrations? And yet the likes of Senator Harry Reid, Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi and Congressman Barney Frank are voted back into office; Congressman John Boehner takes over as leader of the House (if you want to call it leadership); and Mr. Ben Bernanke is re-nominated at the Fed. I find all of the above, well, disconcerting. I would have none of these folk involved in making critical decisions for our country, and I know that many of you join me in your concern.
So what do we do about it? I think the Cato Institute is on the right track. I think Dick Armey and FreedomWorks are on the right track. I think Governors Chris Christie, Scott Walker, Rick Scott and Rick Perry are on the right track. But then I read of the presidential candidates selected as today’s likely frontrunners, and I want to bang my head against the wall. No way any of today’s Republican frontrunners espouse the thinking of what I have unilaterally labeled “The Founders Party.” To a one, they are, at the least, business-as-usual folk or, at the worst, military/industrial complex redux players. No thanks to the lot. All of which leaves my fledging “Founders Party” lacking a standard-bearer and the Republican Party with a crowd of frontrunners I have no interest in supporting. How do you stand?
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