Friday, July 27, 2012

The Bill of Rights: Does It Really Grant Only "Negative Liberties"

(c) 2012 by Tom King

"That government is best which governs least"
- Henry David Thoreau
 It's wonderful how my liberal buddies descend to name-calling after only a few exchanges when they discover that you don't buy their ideas. I got into an argument yesterday with a guy who follows my blog (though why I don't know since I irritate him so much).

He objected to two things.  The first was my contention that people with money are the primary job creators (the investor-centric view).  He contends it's consumer demand that creates jobs (the worker-centric view).

While I agree that consumer demand does play a role in creating jobs, I'd qualify that by saying consumers only demand things when they can afford to buy them.  And they can't afford to buy things unless they have a job. It's kind of the chicken or the egg argument and there are two basic philosophies as to how to address the creation of jobs:
  • One says the government should take away money from the rich (and upper middle class), give (after taking its cut) the money to the poor and middle class (the poor mostly) and then the poor and middle class will spontaneously create demand for goods and services which will be a good thing for everybody.

  • The other philosophy says, investors watch trends in markets and invest money in meeting consumer demands as they happen, thus creating industry and jobs on the chance of being rewarded for that investment with obscene profits which will be a good thing for everybody.

The gaping hole in the first system is that it treats wealth as a magical bottomless pit that it can draw from without consequences.  Without the profit incentive (say if we go back to taxing 75-90% of income from the "wealthy" as we did during the failed war on poverty of the 60s) investors do not make risky investments - the kind that result in the creation of companies and jobs and new industry. And you get the malaise of the 70s where people just give up because no matter how hard they work, the tax man is going to take it away. I lived in the 70s. I was a school teacher and nearly everybody felt that way - so much so that the president made a speech telling us to stop feeling malaiseful and everything would be fine. It wasn't until Reagan lowered taxes and gave business an incentive to get off its duff and make some money that the malaise went away.

I did better under Reagan and I was working in the nonprofit sector. Yes wages didn't skyrocket during the Reagan recovery. That's true. But then neither did our cost of living. When you got a raise, it wasn't eaten up at the grocery store.  Wages didn't skyrocket under Carter either, but we also had double digit inflation that pretty much robbed us of what little we were making. I vividly remember the shortages under Nixon's price controls and Carter's gas lines. The Great Society didn't look so great anymore.

But my progressive buddies like to pretend those things never happened because they don't fit their ideology. In the 60s we were going after those richy rich dollars and had all kinds of government programs. Everything must have been just great!  We were giving away sooooo many food stamps after all.

Ever applied for food stamps? I did back then - a miserable, humiliating process. I'd rather get up and go to work every day and I did. At 5 am every weekday I road a bike five miles each way in the dark on rural roads dodging dogs and rattlesnakes to catch a converted school bus and ride 45 miles one way to work at miserable grinding work building a nuclear power plant (riding past liberal protesters at the gate every day who wanted to shut the project down). I clawed my way out of poverty, but I had to get off all those helpful government programs in order to do it. I couldn't keep up with the paperwork and work full time too. And as soon as I went to work I lost wll those helpful benefits anyway. I was fortunate to find a nonunion job working for Haliburton's Brown and Root. My wife was pregnant. B&R paid for my wife's childbirth even though I'd only been working for them for a month.

I believe in the private sector because I've seen the kind of charity delivered by both it and government. The welfare system seems designed to keep the poor in their place. When I escaped it, I was able to pull myself out of poverty. It was hard. I drove a cab 18 hours a day, worked 50 to 60 hours a week during the early 80s till my wife and I finally started our own business out of our home. We ran it till it failed (free government preschool forced us out of our niche market).  We worked 25 more years in the nonprofit sector, started 5 nonprofit organizations and worked our butts off just to stay afloat. We have no retirement, no pension, no savings. I plan to work till I drop over dead and hope in the years I have left to still get ahead by my own efforts.

And if I do finally take a risk that pays off, I don't want to see the president standing there on TV telling me somebody else made my success for me and demanding 75% of my income because I have "more than my share."

Government is historically the most greedy, oppressive, cruel and heartless organization man has ever come up with.  And don't tell me the church is worse, because the church at its worst was only ever a government in priestly robes and no true church at all.  Even the US government, arguably the most benign in history, has a stark record of committing a whole host of outrages. It has only been kept in check from even worse brutalities by the limitations imposed on it by the US Constitution. And my liberal friends want to remove those limitations and thrust more power into the hands of the government.  That's just insane to me!

My friend argued that Obama didn't make up the idea that the Bill of Rights was a charter of negative liberties - as though that made it a better idea somehow.  Of course Obama didn't make up the idea of "negative liberties". The man hasn't an original thought in his head. He's serving as a tool to other masters, a figurehead to be used in a massive power grab by progressives, his way paved by others. In Obama's case his success is truly not his own. Others did that for him. And I do not think I trust those people with my liberties and my liberties are positive.

I can see how the bill of rights could be considered negative liberties. They are negative liberties for the government.

  1. The government doesn't have the liberty to prevent me from speaking.
  2. The government doesn't have the liberty to prevent me from worshiping as I please.
  3. The government doesn't have the liberty to take away my means to defend myself and my home.
  4. The government doesn't have the liberty to keep me from meetin where I please and with whom I wish.
  5. The government doesn't have the liberty to prevent me from writing and publishing what I wish. 
  6. The government doesn't have the liberty to take away my life or liberty without due process.
In that respect I agree, they are "negative" liberties.  So what's Obama's point?  Is he looking for a bill of rights outlining the government's rights. What a horror that would be!
CS Lewis memorably said this and it's worth resaying, "Of all tyrannies a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victim may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated, but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience."


Monday, July 23, 2012

Do We Need A Second Bill of Rights?

Myself, I Like the First One Better
(c) 2012

I received an invitation from a friend in the Occupy movement to sign a bi-partisan "petition" to "Refocus National Debate on Economic Opportunity and Middle-Class Rights

So, I check out the website and lo and behold, to my great surprise, the whole deal was organized by AFL-CIO president, Richard Trumka, with the object of, as he put it, " insisting that the power structure in America pay attention to the needs of the men and women whose labor drives this country." This "petition" is linked to something called "America's Second Bill of Rights", which we are also invited to endorse.

So, I read the petition and the "Second Bill of Rights".  While as a conservative I share the concern for providing economic opportunity in America for all people, I disagree profoundly, however, with what lies buried in the fine language of these two documents.  There is a poison pill in them that makes these petitions anything but bipartisan.. 

The original bill of rights is a document which limits the power of government to interfere with the ability of its citizens to speak assemble, worship, write, conduct business and defend themselves. The president has called it a bill of "negative liberties" in that it tells the government what it cannot do. He does not like this. President Obama has called for a bill of positive rights that tell the government what it "must do".

This so-called second bill of rights, seems just what the president had in mind in that it instructs the government to provide a basic level of employment, education, health care, access to collective bargaining, voting and retirement to everyone whether they want it or not. 

The first bill of rights says the government can't interfere with you doing what you want to do.  This second "bill of rights" says the government must give you certain things whether you want those or even stir yourself to work for those things.  The documents my friend wanted me to sign are a baseline socialist model for the US government.

The document practically ossifies the social structure in America into a ruling class and a working class proletariat.
  Those who have a position in the ruling class will continue to have that position. Rather than creating a classless society, this unionized vision of America will create just two classes - workers and their rulers.  Those of us in the lower ranks of the working class will all be smoothed out and leveled so that we share a common level of misery with the other workers with precious little opportunity to rise above the pack and achieve success.  In socialist systems, workers bees never become queen bees.

What is hidden in the pretty language is a surrender of our freedom to pursue economic opportunity. In exchange we receive from the government, a guaranteed job, retirement, health care and union membership.  I'd personally like to have something rather better than a guaranteed job, government health care or a union pension. 

This scheme of guaranteeing a minimum standard of living for everyone has been tried before. The trouble is that what you get when the government "guarantees" you a job is a job you probably don't want or ask for, but which is assigned to you along with a shabby house just like the other 10,000 government homes in your town, inadequate healthcare, a poor education and a loss of all that freedom you were supposed to get when you accepted all those "guarantees" in the first place.

Does no one read history anymore? Do we not remember the Soviet Union, China's Cultural Revolution, Cambodia and all those socialist banana republics down in South America.  Once they start going bad because their economies collapse, then you get the goose-stepping "security" forces and the gulags and everything goes downhill from there. 

You see when the "smart people" who think they should run everything for everyone else's welfare discover the beautiful system they've created, based on a flawed core belief in the innate goodness of man, doesn't work, they have to go blame it on someone else, so they turn on the very people they were trying to help.

Sadly, though the belief about people behind the drive to socialism is altruistic, it is a false belief. The core belief is that, relieved from want and assured of all the basic necessities, people will be freed to be happy and creative and they will all work hard for the greater good.  And it is all very comforting to believe this noble altruistic thing.  People who believe this feel very good about themselves and think the rest of us are just plain cynical..

The competing belief about humanity is that we're all basically selfish barbarians that need a reason to do useful work and consistent negative consequences for bad behavior.  While admittedly a cynical view of human beings, it turns out to be a more useful one.  Christians recognize the utility of this darker view of people because we believe in original sin.  Since people are no damned good, for civilization to exist, we must either cajole, punish and reward (as capitalism does so well) or we must convert (as the Christian church does so well). 

Despite socialism's well documented enmity to Christianity, the irony is that Christianity does a better job than any other social system for making people into the kind of people the progressive socialists would like to believe we all are naturally. 

In a sinful world, socialism doesn't work.  The reason it doesn't is that it's based on giving power to government on the false premise that "power does NOT corrupt" and that smart people, given the power of government, would arrange society for the benefit of all and the socialist utopia would break forth.  But power does corrupt. And, as the old adage says, if it's absolute power, it corrupts absolutely.

Mr. Trumka and his ilk initially mean well.  The call for bipartisan support for workers rights seems essentially benign; something we can all get behind. Mr Trumka is, unfortunately, either deluded or power hungry. He believes, perhaps quite honestly, that smart people like himself, if given sufficient power, can arrange things so that everyone will be guaranteed, not antique ideas like life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, but jobs, housing, health care and a pension.  The Roman high society types called it "bread and circuses".  Instead of an idyllic society (where deranged mobs regularly rose up and murdered the swells in their beds), what the Romans got, instead, was a succession of brutal, corrupt and often insane emperors who used the Roman people like cattle.  

As one of the potential cattle in the socialist world the authors of this "second bill of rights" envision, I want neither to be fattened up nor to have my hide protected so people can make unblemished shoe leather out of it. I want to live, to be free and to find happiness the best way I can.  I want to choose my job, my home, my doctor and how I end my life.

It's unlikely the two sides will ever come together because of the fundamental distance between these two beliefs. It's too hard for either side to make the cognitive leap across the abyss. One says we are basically good and need no God. The other says that God is basically good and we aren't and that the only way we can be good is for God to change us.  There is a third version that Ayn Rand articulated - that man is a greedy barbarian period, there is no hope for us but a system of survival of the fittest.

Either say, sorry Mr. Trumka. I won't sign this. Not ever!

Just one man's opinion.

Tom King

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

What’s Wrong With New Ideas in Education?

(c) 2012 by Tom King

Anyone?   Anyone?

Trick question. The answer is, “Nothing” or maybe “It’s about time we got some!”

When we built the US education system around the German model back at the beginning of the 20th century, we were in essence trying to fit a round peg in a square hole (the square hole being the German education system). The United States was settled by waves of people seeking opportunities outside the ancient and "ossified" societies of Europe. An unpopular Harvard sociologist once wrote a treatise suggesting that people with ADHD tended to migrate to the US at higher rates and because there is a genetic component, we, therefore, inherited a nation with an inordinate number of restless, high energy people in it. It accounts for the impulse people had to load up creaky Contestogas and move away from the more settled East Coast to the Wild West, which probably explains why the west was so wild in the first place. 

All these hyper people, goes the theory, continued percolating westward till they hit the Pacific Ocean where they piled up on the beach and invented California. (It explains a lot - this theory). So after filling up this country with people who didn’t fit in the Old World’s rigidly classed societies, what to 19th century progressive education theorists do?  They run right back to the Europeans and adopt an education system designed specifically for that stratified European culture. It seemed like a good idea at the time. We were, after all, entering an industrial boom at the time and needed lots of well-mannered factory workers and the Germans did have the ideal education system for that.

The German graded system was designed specifically to teach kids to show up on time, sit still and do repetitive work all day while their supervisors kept up a steady monitoring of their production. In essence, the graded school system was designed as a production line to produce production line workers.  Great if you are training future workers for arms factories and munitions plants (which, as it turns out, was what the Germans were up to). Not so great for the kind of kids we have in great abundance in America. Don’t get me wrong. Some kids do quite well in a graded setting. I, myself, made good grades, but was bored to distraction and never quite found a job that matched my training.

So I gave teaching a shot.

I once taught at a one teacher school in New Mexico where I had 14 kids in 6 grades on 7 reading levels and at least 8 of them were diagnosable with ADHD. This is not uncommon, especially in rural areas, or at least that was my experience. When I started the kids were an average 3 grade levels behind. Their previous teacher was a rigid, old school teacher, much loved by the school's board of directors (4 of the five of whom were retired or former teachers). The parents, on the other hand, did NOT like the teacher and had demanded a new teacher, threatening to pull their kids out of the school en masse because they hated school and were learning nothing. I took the job because my previous school let me go. I was the last hired, so I was the first to go when the school lost a lot of kids at once. I needed a job. They needed a teacher.

I enjoyed the challenge of my new school. My classroom was a moveable feast. I had to keep the kids going all the time. Our recesses were sometimes rather long to allow the kids to blow off steam. We did a lot of cross-grade mentoring in the classes with older kids helping younger kids with their work. I must have done something right. That year my class reached grade level on average on their achievement tests - some exceeded it. My parents were meeting in their homes for prayer groups at the end of the year, praying I would stay. The school board, meanwhile, asked me to leave. Apparently my school room didn't look like a school room was supposed to.  What I learned was that "old school" was more about appearance than results.

Yesterday I wrote about the objections being floated about corporate foundations like the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation funding new ideas like those proposed by groups like Teach For America and Students First. I think Gates' support for these new education entrepreneurs is admirable. The children of America are not square pegs. They come in a beautiful array of shapes, sizes and learning styles. We need some fresh ideas in education that utilize new technologies and capabilities. Computers, as it turns out, really work with ADHD kids. Maybe that’s Gates’ angle – teach the kids to use computers to educate themselves, so Microsoft will have more customers. I want to know what the heck is wrong with that?  All opponents can give me is either that it threatens the teacher unions or that the funders might make a profit doing it.

Education that makes a profit?  How cool would that be?

What was it Alvin Toffler said? “The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn.” The tools being offered by the Gates Foundation and others are just the tools that kids need to learn, unlearn and relearn throughout their careers.

If Gates sells a few extra copies of Windows or Apple sells a few more Macs as a result of their investments in education, I can live with that. If they make it possible for young education entrepreneurs, freed from the shackles of teacher’s unions and politically polarized school systems, to figure out more effective ways to teach kids, I say, “Good on ‘em.”

The old fossils in the education establishment, however, are really gonna hate it.

Tom King

Defending the Phrog Farm - Education "Experts" Opine on Gates Foundation 'Meddling' in Education

Diane Ravitch is puzzled by the Gates Foundation.  Apparently Diane thinks " their efforts to “reform” education are woefully mistaken."  It seems, to Ms. Ravitch's horror, the Gates Foundation is funding astroturf” groups of young teachers who insist that they don’t want any job protections, don’t want to be rewarded for their experience (of which they have little) or for any additional degrees, and certainly don’t want to be represented by a collective bargaining unit.

And there is the key to Diane's anger with Gates. His foundation supports "non-unionized" groups.

(insert gasp of collective horror)

Also, apparently, Diane can't get a meeting with Bill to tell him her opinion and she seems more than a little upset about that.

Rick Cohen over at Nonprofit Quarterly is also righteously indignant and pulls together a lot of supporting commentary in his article, opining that the Gates Foundation is promoting an anti-teacher, anti-public education agenda in state after state.

I understand Rick and Diane's concern. Education is a frustrating issue, whichever side of the fence you sit on. If you're on the blindly pro-union side, however, all that loose money, uncontrolled by some "collective bargaining unit", must make them nervous. Some schools might take the money and be 'corrupted'.

Diane seems most worried, about the supposed deleterious effects of the Gates Foundation's support for a non-unionized, dare I say, free market approach to education. As soon as anyone funds a group that is even looking at an approach that rewards performance rather than time served, the pro-union crowd rises up with pitchforks and torches.

Myself, I've watched too many outstanding teachers over the years fired because they rocked the union boat, made other teachers look bad, taught in ways that upset their colleagues or drifted outside the holy curriculuum. One of my favorite teachers, Marva Collins, left the public school system and started a private school in a garage that quickly filled up with kids who had been kicked out of the Chicago Public School system. I've met some of those kids and they are miles ahead of their peers. Marva could never have taught like she did in the unionized public school system. Her teaching methods would not long have been tolerated.

What the Gates Foundation's support of non-unionized teachers does is add a competitive element to education. (And, yes, Virginia, there are teachers who don't want to be in teacher's unions.) How that having a place in education for nonunion teachers profits Microsoft is something of a mystery to me.

Any school that doesn't want Gates' money is, of course, free to not take it and go ahead and do what they want, just as my own alma mater chose not to accept government education grants and the strings that come with them.

Let's face it, the public school system is in dismal shape in much of America. Even the kids know it and are rebelling even more than we were back in the 60s. What's wrong with trying something different?

Kids and parents both want education that teaches our young-uns to do something valuable, something marketable so they have good jobs when they grow up and don't have to live in our basements. Companies (including the evil corporations) want trained workers too. So why is it so bad to teach kids more of the kinds of things that get them good jobs and start successful careers? Foundations wanting to fund innovation in education shouldn't damage the unionized education system if, as the unions claim, their system is better. If kids aren't getting a good education, parents will simply refuse to pay for it and send their kids back to class with a suitably reliable union teacher.

Why not, let's try something new and see if it works better before we summarily pitch out the bath without checking if the baby is still in there? The biggest complaint parents like me have with education is that the teachers unions protect bad teachers, reward them with steady raises and benefits no matter what sort of miserable teacher they prove themselves to be. All they have to do is mark time and not do anything spectacular.

I'm wondering why paying teachers by how well their kids learn isn't a good idea. So what if some students are poorly motivated, poorly disciplined and troubled. Shouldn't we as parents be willing to pay teachers who have the ability to handle those tough kids, motivate them and inspire them. And I'm tired of hearing teachers whine about the poor quality of their students.

I worked with multi-diagnosis emotionally disturbed kids. They came from horrific homes. I did things with my kids that people said couldn't be done. My kids struggled; a few let me down, but for the most part, they made me proud to be their teacher. I worked outside the teacher's unions and the education system. Our kids had the best outcomes records in the state next to other treatment centers and we were hated by our colleagues and our government supervisors for showing them up.

I'm tired of the teacher's unions complaining that we are teaching children to be good test takers and yet quote the results of those same tests to prove that we need to spend more money (largely on union teacher salaries and dues) ostensibly to enable our kids able to pass those same tests with as good a grades as their Japanese or Europeans counterparts.

Little secret here - that's going to take more than a little "teaching to the test" to kick up those test scores and prove that all that money was well spent.

The problem with governments and unions and even schools is that they mistake sameness for fairness. If they could make us all "C" students, I think they might be happy.  They know damned good and well they're not going to make "A" students out of all of them. 

In so-called "progressive" societies and organizations, if you do too well, if you stick your head above the crowd, the rest of the group WILL lop your head right off for making the rest of them look bad.  It's well known that at Harvard and other progressive Ivy league schools that the quickest way to not get tenure is to win the teacher of the year award. Unions all meant well in the beginning, but, especially in the field of education, they've turned schools into swamps.

Management guru, Dr. Jerry Harvey, once pointed out in his insightful 1977 paper, "Organizations as Phrog Farms" that:

"The Job of most swamp managers is to maintain and enhance the swamp, not to drain it.... The purpose of swamp consultants—in the eyes of swamp managers—is to help the swamp operate more effectively."

Simply substitute "school superintendents" for "swamp managers" and "teacher's unions"  for "swamp consultants".

You should read professor's Harvey's wonderfully subversive book: The Abilene Paradox and Other Meditations on Management.  It explains what happened to education and why many big corporations, especially the ones that are "too big to fail" aren't much better off.

Dr. Harvey's paper "The Abilene Paradox" explains as well as any book on management I've ever read, why groups of people try to make good decisions about what to do and with the best of intentions, manage to decide to do what nobody wants to do and make themselves miserable in the process.  I recommend reading the book curled up in a chair with no distractions.  You can get the two key articles at the above links in a pdf file, but be warned:  there is a danger of spewing coffee all over your computer monitor.  Just so you know the risk.

Just one man's opinion.

Tom King

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

George Carlin is Wrong.

This got posted on Facebook the other day. (pause for you to read it).

I don't go to Facebook so much anymore because people put stuff up like this and it makes me mad and then I go off and waste time writing a huge long post about it which nobody hardly reads anyway.  I suppose it gives me a link to post I can use to respond to this junk instead of having to repeat myself endlessly.

George Carlin is wrong on this one.  This doesn't make sense to him because (1) he doesn't think of himself as "rich" even though next to me he was Warren Buffet and because (2) he thinks part of the money rich people make "belongs" to the government.  People like Carlin think of lowering taxes as "giving" rich people money (possibly because poor people don't pay taxes and so reducing taxes doesn't help them directly).  The whole thinking is flawed.

That's like a mugger giving you $5 change for the hundred dollar bill he took from you and expecting you to be grateful for the "gift".  It's not a gift, it's just $5 some criminal didn't take from you.  How is it we've come to think of the billions we take in taxes from some rich guys as "our" money and not money that belonged to those who earned it.

As to giving money to the poor, that's a noble thing to do.  We've done it for thousands of years.  The problem is that lately, we've made welfare a right.  I used to do counseling with troubled kids.  I'd ask them what they wanted to be when they grew up. One young man told me, "When I'm 21 I'm going to get my government check and then the women's will take care of me."  His family taught him that welfare was his right because he was poor. There was no thought that he should do anything other than to jump through the hoops to get his  government check.  Another man I talked to bragged about how many kids he had by how many different women and described how he managed to get money from government checks from most of them. He was proud of his proficiency at gaming the welfare system. There was no recognition that this was in any way wrong.

A welfare system that teaches people to believe this way is not doing what it was supposed to.
It's merely a cash payout to the poor so we don't have to feel guilty about them or spend any time trying to really help them by giving them jobs or helping them get homes of their own.

People really do lose any incentive to work if you punish them for working by taking away what you were giving them for free if they do go to work.  It's a real problem that taking money from rich people won't help.

I worked for 30 years in the nonprofit sector and worked with all kinds of help systems.  I've been broke, I've been on food stamps and have to deal with Medicare.  I do know this. The welfare system as run by the government seems designed to prevent people from escaping its clutches. 

I think we should be honest about it though. If we're trying to create a permanent dependent class that will vote reliably Democratic, then just send them their checks and do away with all the paperwork and qualification process and all that pretense of wanting them to be better off.  Just let rich people pay into welfare like protection money to the Mafia only it's poor people they are afraid of.  If rich people give poor people all this money, then they sign a promise not to rise up and murder them in their expensive beds.

Something is deeply wrong with the system.  I've seen it.  All the rhetoric about punishing the rich by taxing them is only obscuring the problem. The same politicians who tell you they want to tax the rich to help the poor, don't want you to think about why those same politicians are getting millions of dollars in campaign contributions from those same rich people.  They don't want you to look too closely and make the connection that those corporate bailouts and huge bonuses to CEOs that wreck their companies are all being funded by middle class taxpayers - the working rich who run the companies, own the businesses and hire the workers in this country. The giant fat cat corporations give lip service to liberal ideals because they know they can buy their way around having to pay those taxes.  They've been doing it for decades. When the top tax rate was 76% back in the 60s, it was only the working rich that paid such confiscatory taxes. The giant companies and the super-rich paid virtually nothing but attorney fees. 

Who do you think puts tax loopholes for the super rich  in the tax laws?  It's not the middle class, that's for sure.  It's career politicians and the Democrats have historically been the worst offenders, though there have been plenty of Republicans willing to sell their souls for a senate seat.

I just hate to see so many people taken in by the ideological shell game.
In the end it will be politicians and the super rich in their fancy houses like the dachas of the Soviet Union's apparatchik, while the rest of us enjoy the uniform misery that is being one of "the people" in a socialist nation.

I've never understood why anyone who has ever read a history text can truly believe that the way to freedom is to create a bigger, more intrusive government.  It never ever works.......NEVER.

(c) 2012 by Tom King

Sunday, July 8, 2012

I Have Written the Democrats a Victory Song in Anticipation of Obama's Certain Victory

I offered this to my Democrat friends after the 2009 election but never got any takers. I heard the tune on a Smithsonian folk song CD.  It was originally written after Franklin D. Roosevelt's victory - kind of a nanny nanny boo-boo song that was popular with the unions, the communists and Democrats back in the day.

It was such a lovely bluegrass number, I decided to update it a bit.  I thought my Democrat buddies back in 09 needed a good nanny nanny boo-boo song to go with the little nanny nanny boo boo dance they were all doing.  I figure they need a new one what with all the Hope and Change we've been having lately.

To wit, this tuneful little number.  If you want to hear a clip of the tune, check out this version on to see how it goes. Just click on the play button and you'll hear the tune.

We’ve Got Democrats in Congress Once Again

(Tune: We've Got Franklin D. Roosevelt Back Again - 1936, Bill Cox)

C                                               F
Just hand me my old banjo For soon I’m goin’ to go
C                                                  G7
Back to dear old Washington far away.
C                                              F
Since Obama's been elected, We'll not be neglected.
                   G7                                               C
We've got Democrats in the Congress once again.
C                            F                          C                                              G7
Once again, once again, We've got Democrats in the Congress once again.
C                                                         F
Since Obama’s been re-elected, The Economy’s been corrected.
                 G7                                      C
We've got bucketfuls of money pouring in.

We’ll take ourselves a little toke
We’ll eat our veggies till we choke.
The diet cops will watch us night and day.
You can tell a dirty joke.
Fornicate, but you can’t smoke.
We've got Democrats in the Congress once again.

Once again, once again,
We've got Democrats in the Congress once again.
Rush Limbaugh will be buried.
Gay folks can all get married.
We've got Democrats in the Congress once again.

No more mortgages to pay.
The donkey won election day.
No more workin’ in the blowing, snow and rain.
Security is watching us.
We’ll all be ridin’ on the bus.
We've got Democrats in the Congress once again.

Once again, once again,
We've got Democrats in the Congress once again.
Since Obama’s now above us,
The whole world’s gonna love us.
Cause we’re gonna all be just as poor as them.

...Poor as them, poor as them
We're gonna all be just as poor as them.
And if you're not a socialist
You'll get an audit from the IRS
We've got Democrats in the Congress once again.

New words by Tom King (c) 2008, 2013