The Deeper Meaning of the CBz Beck-O-Lanche

[This was an update to a previous post, but I decided it should stand on its own. There are some inspiring lessons here.]

Great thanks to Glenn Beck for the mighty call-out on his TV show. He quotes this post here starting at 12:10, and continuing here. The transcript of the show is here.

This has been an interesting couple of days.

I saw a video of the Restoring Honor event, which struck me favorably. I looked at some commentary about it, and saw that no one was getting it, since everybody seems stuck looking through a straw at second-to-second issues, and narrow politics, where Beck was clearly aiming at big, culture-changing action. This is not, historically, unheard of. There is nickel-and-dime politics, and there is big, who-we-are politics. The second type only comes along once in a while, but when it does it changes the whole game. Beck sees correctly that we are living in an unusual era of major change and he is acting accordingly. I started to whip off an email to some of my usual group of pals about these penetrating insights, but it got too long. So I put it out on the blog, figuring our regular readers might like it, and didn’t think about it anymore.

Later on I saw the post was getting an unusual number of comments, indicating that it was circulating around. I was out of town in a hotel room, working, and would look at the blog from time to time since there was a continual flow of comments. I responded to a few and made sure everyone was playing well with each other. (For some reason, it is always the posts you just type from the gut and dash off that get the most interest.) Then at 10:22 p.m. our pal PurpleSlog left a comment that Beck had tweeted the post, and said “The ONLY guy to actually get it!” Whoa. How crazy is that? The tempo of incoming comments increased, but I finally had to get some sleep. Today went fine at work, and I was able to check up from time to on my iPhone. At 8:22 a.m. a commenter named Jason Wilder commented that Mr. Beck had mentioned the post on his radio show. Cool. More comments were flowing in. Then, Jonathan calls and tells me someone from the Glenn Beck Program wanted to talk to me. I was in my car on the way to the airport when a nice lady named Jenna talked to me for a few minutes. I said of course Mr. Beck could read it or say whatever he wanted about the post on his TV show.

When he did, the incoming traffic spiked and took the blog down. Crunch! The power of a Beck-O-Lanche!

We stand in awe of such vast and primal forces.

I got Jonathan on the phone, he got the hosting company on the phone, and they fixed it. I was getting a real-time feed from several friends via Facebook and email, on my phone, about the show. I got in line to get on the plane, and only then did I notice that in Louisville they have the TVs on Fox! I could have watched it.

Too funny.

So, OK, Lex. Why are you telling me all this? Surely it cannot merely be smug self-congratulation?

Ahem. Moi? Certainly not!

Let us consider the larger lessons. The ability of like-minded people to find each other, to spread ideas, to inform each other, is getting better and better all the time. This little episode is one of many examples of a critical and very hopeful fact:

Today’s tools favor our side in this struggle, which I am calling the Insurgency.

The Insurgency is based on individual freedom, autonomous decision-making, spontaneous order, voluntary association, open-mindedness, adaptiveness, transparency, networks rather than hierarchies. It is at bottom a fun loving and joyful and open spirit. In many cases this is based on religious faith. (I raise my hand.) In others it is based on love of human potential and creativeness, or other positive factors. This model works. And it works better and better with the tools of today and tomorrow.

The Opposition is based on the outdated legacy systems of the Industrial Era. It is based on assembly lines, bureaucracies, railway timetables, rationing, coercive and rule-bound action, mandatory schedules, forcing people into niches and categories, stripping them of autonomy, and turning people into petty little beasts subject to political control. That is the vision of the Opposition: People standing in line, people asking permission, people filling out forms, people without cars, without money in their pockets, who need a political favor to get anything done. It is based on nostalgia for the old-time “Big Unit” America that worked tolerably well in its day, the period roughly 1900-1950. (Michael Barone wrote about this recently.) But a system of centralized control that barely worked in its heyday is utterly unsuited to the world of today. It is increasingly falling on its face. Our institutions no longer work, because they are ill-suited to who we are, what we need, and where we want to go.

This top-down vision lives on because it is based on the self-flattering delusion that just because someone had good SAT scores he is qualified to tell millions of citizens how to live, from his desk. (Hayek could tell you why that is wrong.) The Soviet commissars couldn’t do it, and our smartypantses can’t do it, either.

And of course there are cynical, rent-seeking people who benefit from the regulatory leviathan, and don’t want it to change. All too many in this category are Republicans.

The Opposition’s model is a failure. Doubling down, as Mr. Obama has tried to do, will only dig the hole deeper. The American people have figured that out. They are looking for ways to wind up the legacy systems of the past, and move on. They are going to succeed, but the process won’t be pretty.

The Insurgency is the wave of the future. We are going to wage this struggle on the moral, intellectual and material plane, with a smile, with charity, without rancor, with confidence. Anyway, that’s how I think we should play it.

The American way of life is deeply rooted, it is alive, and it is heading for a new Renaissance. No kidding. You heard it here first. We are going to go through a rough patch, then we are going to win, hands down.

This little episode is one shiny tile in a massive mosaic that we are building together.

We have the tools.

We have our history.

We have our sense of humor.

We have each other.

We can change hearts and minds, then change ideas, then change the politics.

A fair wind is beginning to blow.

It’s going to be good.

God bless America.

19 thoughts on “The Deeper Meaning of the CBz Beck-O-Lanche”

  1. Amen.

    …though i walk through the valley of the shadow of death…

    Yes, we are in a rough patch. And it isn’t easy to see past it. But I have hope. Thank you, for putting into writing, how I (and many others) feel.

  2. Ain’t this new fangled technology amazing?? ABC, NBC, CBS the 3 faced, one brained monster that dictated the “company” line since the 1950’s is bypassed and deemed irrelevant by a couple clicks on home computers. You know longer need a billion dollar platform and a J-school degree from an elite NE school to present your views. The restricted country club where only the favored few with the right schools and the right thoughts made it in front of the people has become a real marketplace where we can shop for anything we want. Bloggers are, to twist a phrase, judged by the character of their content, not the status of their platform. Your Beck-O-Lanche just affirms that good content will be found, will be viewed and will be discussed and Katie Curic be damned.

  3. Lex,

    We are in the middle of a full on American-Jacksonian Restoration over the soon to be dead political careers of the Current Ruling Elite.

    You can see the outlines of what is coming with the elittes versus maasses reactions to the Federal law suit against Arizona’s illegal immigrant law and the Ground Zero Mosque.

    And it is getting worse, see:

    <em."American voters are a bunch of spoiled brats"

    Stuff like that “from our betters” will be nothing compared to what we will see in post-election in early November 2010.

    And that is only the beginning.

    The Left is still using it’s anti-“Old Bull Elite” Ailinskyite tactics against a genuine right of center, bottom up, mass movement.

    It isn’t working, and cannot work, because their targets are not Old Bull Elites. They are the wider, Liberty loving, American people

    All those tactics do is backfire on the Left and create a “Self-Ailinskyite moment” that allows the Tea Party and wider general public to more effectively target thier Leftist opponents.

    But like any cargo cult, the Left can’t stop doing what they have been doing to get what they want.

    Pajama’s Media commentator Richard “Wretchard” Fernandez had a fine time telling us what Leftist cargo cult, in control of the Democratic Party, are going to do the rest of the time Obama is in office and why.


    The practitioners of cargo cult science — and politics — only have one response to any failure: double down. The adjustments are always in the direction of altering the present to resemble the imagined perfect state. Higher graduation rates; high percentages of ideal types; higher government payments; higher taxes. What could go wrong? Lincoln Steffens famously wrote “I have been over into the future, and it works.” An entire generation of progressives believed his vision was gospel and worked tirelessly towards its attainment. Perhaps it’s not impertinent to point out that Steffens was talking about the Soviet Union, a state that no longer even exists. There is something tragic in the fact that the Gulags were built, the show trials were held and the Atom Bomb spies stole for a state that is gone.

    Perhaps it is not coincidental that Fouad Ajami’s recent Wall Street Journal article on the political decline of Barack Obama described the phenomenon in terms of the obsolescence of magic. In “The Obsolescence of Barack Obama” he says “the magic of 2008 can’t be recreated, and good riddance to it.”

    >It is in the nature of charisma that it rises out of thin air, out
    >of need and distress, and then dissipates when the magic fails. The
    >country has had its fill with a scapegoating that knows no end from
    >a president who had vowed to break with recriminations and
    >partisanship. The magic of 2008 can’t be recreated, and good riddance
    >to it. Slowly, the nation has recovered its poise. There is a
    >widespread sense of unstated embarrassment that a political majority,
    >if only for a moment, fell for the promise of an untested redeemer—a
    >belief alien to the temperament of this so practical and sober a nation.

    In that Ajami is wrong. The Left firmly believes in magic. If Barack Obama fails, they’ll find another magician. One younger, handsomer, smarter, more charismatic. Because however abjectly a magician fails, the magic itself must be true. And so, with better music perhaps, in cooler cadences maybe, but in meanings as old as Babylon the same old spells will be incanted. For those who are convinced — the beliefs of progressives notwithstanding — that the future has not yet happened the door of 2008 can only have opened on a scene that nobody has yet the clearest idea of. It may be one of immense tragedy. Or it may be one of great hope. What is fairly certain is that it is not the one envisioned by the great magicians of the left. Nor is it anything that conservatives can predict. Maybe it is even one where the Left finally gives up its attachment to sorcery. As a survivalist woman almost put it, “the unknown future rolls toward us. I face it, for the first time, with a sense of hope. Because if a machine, a Terminator, can learn that it is not yet written, maybe the Left can too.”

    My fear is that for those on the Left who refuse to connect cause and effect can never change, no matter how much political defeat and monetary pain are inflicted upon them by events.

    If the numbers of such people in the American polity are large enough…It will get very ugly.

  4. I remember Beck talking about this 8 or 9 months ago and he repeatedly said how it was going to change the country. At the time, he was pretty tight lipped about it, but lets hope he was right.

  5. re: the “spoiled brat” comment. Eugene Robinson really does not understand what make the country function. What has he ever done except go to school and write drivel for a leftist newspaper that is dying ?

    In a 25-year career at The Post, Robinson has been city hall reporter, city editor, foreign correspondent in Buenos Aires and London, foreign editor, and assistant managing editor in charge of the paper’s award-winning Style section. In 2005, he started writing a column for the Op-Ed page. He is the author of “Coal to Cream: A Black Man’s Journey Beyond Color to an Affirmation of Race” (1999) and “Last Dance in Havana” (2004).

    There it is. Can he charge a spark plug ? Does he know how to turn off the water in his house if there is a leak ?

    I have been doing a lot of work on my new house. Some of it I could do myself but I have been having skilled (mostly union) tradesmen doing it. One reason is because a lot of it is insurance work as the house was damaged by mold during a period when it was unoccupied for three years and there was a water leak.

    Anyway, I have avoided politics with these guys because who knows what a union carpenter’s politics are ? Well, the subject came up the other day and their politics are well to the right of mine. Well to the right. One guy, a union electrician, is still angry about Clinton selling MIRV technology to China. The leftist “elite” has no idea how well educated about real things the general public is. Sure, there are welfare mothers who watch TV all day but there are also a lot of poor black folks who are very angry about welfare and the condescending attitude they see directed at them. Look at the lines for the DC school vouchers.

    The public is awakening and the consequences may be very dangerous for the governing class, including the Republican insiders who still don’t get it.

  6. One of the most optimistic facts is the nature of these rallies. The opposition keeps saying they are against, not for. But that is because they haven’t wrapped their mind around the “for.” The rallies are of people who want to act but its demamds are more often of the audience than of others, certainly not of the government – well, perhaps, leave us alone. I remember Obama telling the bankers he was the only one standing between them and the pitchforks. This betrayed more of his misunderstanding of America than about anything he has ever said (and that is saying a lot). The only people that went to such people’s houses were the SEIU thugs. America was not and is not built on class warfare and trying to ignite it only irritates us.

    Both literature and the Bible spend a lot of time telling us to avoid the kind of pride that hates another for what he is, another for what he has. Liberation theologians don’t understand introspection, the importance of self-examination, the folloies of coveting others’ goods.

    Thanks Lex for all you are saying. I remember an energy after 9/11 and I think there is the same one today. The energy comes from connecting with our roots again, of clearing away the chaos to see the core of what we believed in and still believe in. That rough patch and this one have had the effect of clarifying and intensifying our appreciation, indeed, love.

  7. Re: Eugene Robinson. It’s deja vu all over again! SOO last decade. This “temper tantrum” stuff is exactly what was said after the last Republican landslide. At least this time they recognize it coming before it hits. My only concern is people will become disillusioned because while names with R behind them will outnumber names with D behind them, we conservatives/constitutionalists will still be in the minority against the RINOs and Dems. We’ve won some, but not all, the primaries. (In my own district there isn’t even a conservative candidate running against our RINO.) I want to spit nails every time I see a comment saying “VOTE NOV.2”. In too many cases the choice at that point is between bad and worse. We need to keep the momentum going to the next election, and the next, and the next, and really get involved BEFORE the primaries.

  8. Great post, I think I like this one better than the original. I have thought about this for a long time, but never put it into words. The Progressive form of government is not anything new. It’s been tried many times throughout history, it’s basically a Totalitarian Form of rule. Stay committed, stay focused. No more “this election is the most important of your life time”, they all are. Every day is important, stay tuned in, know who, when, and where a R becomes a RINO.

  9. Thanks to Glenn Beck TV show I found your blog. So far I am quite impressed and seek to join you in your “Insurgency”! Unfoetunately when I went to school we didn’t have computers so I hated English and composition(and it obliously shows that today). Now, I enjoy doing some blogging and am thrilled to find that many of the young minds that I discover when sharing ideas possess minds void of mush. (Rush would be pleased with that one)

  10. Yes, I too suffer from ODS (Obama Derangement Syndrome). But I’m not worried. To get over this affliction, as well as my Koch habit, I need to take two blue pills, go to sleep and wake up in 2017.

  11. “The Insurgency is based on individual freedom, autonomous decision-making, spontaneous order, voluntary association, open-mindedness, adaptiveness, transparency, networks rather than hierarchies. It is at bottom a fun loving and joyful and open spirit.”

    That is what I found, when I first got involved in the local Tea Party – and, just to pound in the point again about voluntary association – I only knew about it because a retired military officer who was a blogger and a fan of my particular blog for some years before had gotten involved (through a Facebook site focusing on the geographic area) and asked if I wanted to get involved as a media expert. And I wound up at a meeting with a bunch of like-minded people from a wide assortment of backgrounds … and there we were.
    I was part of the organizing committee for one of the huge original Tea Party rallies (the one in San Antonio, on April 15th)as a result of this, so I was prowling through the crowd in Alamo Plaza for a bit on the afternoon of the 15th; and the thing that I have to say was that it was such a jolly crowd! It was like one humongous neighborhood block party. I can’t say that often enough – it was like an enormous, happy gathering, but among people who had never actually met before! Everyone was having such a good time, and being so kind and considerate with each other. One of the things I remember seeing was an elderly gentleman stepping off a high curb, near the bandstand in Alamo Plaza and missing his footing and falling – and he was immediately sprang upon by about a dozen bystanders, helping him up, assuring that he was ok, offering First Aid, a place to sit down and recover. And afterwards, the Alamo Plaza was as neat as a pin. Everyone carried away their trash – and we had our own volunteer clean-up crew.
    I suppose the kicker in all this is that most of the people attending this (and subsequent rallies and events) had never done anything like that before – ever! No wonder the Powers That Be are afraid. I think we are reverting to something of the 19th century passion for political involvement, which is what it has to be, really – except that this time around we are networked, and better informed. We can’t afford letting the conduct of our nation go to the usual career political tools, with the degree from the proper college and the endorsement of the media organs. We just can’t. I’m not a fan of Glenn Beck (in fact, I had barely heard of him, before February, 2009!) but of all the things that he is doing, encouraging people to go back to the original documents, and to our history – that’s what is key to what is happening now. He isn’t telling us what to think. He is telling the audience what to read, study and discuss, and to make up our own minds.

  12. Background: I am living out of the country, so could not attend the rally, or any tea party events. Nevertheless, I have been following the information on blogs and am able to purchase Fox News through my tv satellite provider.

    Move to the point, I have never been what one would term a “joiner”, but I was so wishing I could join a tea party or attend a rally. Everything I’ve read, everything I’ve watched just made me want to connect with these people. They seemed so joyful.

    Just as Obama was coming into ascendancy, I was back in the U.S., and I couldn’t believe how so many people just assumed I was “one of them” — that I had hate in my heart for this country and the current president (G.W. Bush). I encountered strangers and was shocked by how they wished they could live in my current country of residence (one of the homes of socialized medicine). As I didn’t want to be confrontational, I just commented that they really didn’t know what they were wishing for.

    Had I been able at that time to know I was not alone, which the tea parties have managed to accomplish for so many citizens, I might have been able to stand up to these deluded liberal thinkers.

    To those who think they don’t have it very good, I would suggest you go live someplace else for a minimum of 3 years and learn that what you have now is beyond measure in even the most advanced of nations.

  13. One thing I note is that he often resorts to the “higher power” or “belief in God” or “faith” metaphors because they are commonly used for 12 step programs. And he’s leading a giant 12 step program. The first step is to convince is that we have a problem. We’re not too fat or drunk all the time. We’re too lazy, “let the other guy do it” or worse “let the government do it.” We have to break that habit, that addiction, to having the other guy do it.

    One of the critical memes in such programs is that only faith in something greater than you are can get you through, cure your obesity or alcoholism or other addiction. The success of such programs is plenty of proof that this is not a phony concept. A belief that there is a supreme being aware of what you are doing who has a set of published guidelines of behavior you are expected to meet brings out that mode of behavior on the part of almost all human beings.

    (Islam follows this precept closely. Allah is ALWAYS watching and judging you in detail. And, sadly, Allah expects rather Satanic behavior from his followers including such inhuman artifacts as suicide bombers. So you can see from that just how effective this modality is on human beings.)

    I applaud and thank Glenn Beck for what he is doing. I also respect him.


  14. The grass roots movement is going to need a specific economic policy position.
    I propose the following:
    Monetary: Since money is defined as a medium of exchange and a store of value,
    the Fed will, first and foremost, defend and protect the nation’s currency in these regards.

    Fiscal: The effect of deficits is to inject money into the economy. In aggregate savings cannot
    cannot occur without deficits. As an aging nation we need to save more. Consequently we support
    deficits created by lower taxes rather than increased spending by govt. Tax reduction should be targeted to encourage capital formation rather than financial innovation aka gambling with our savings.

    Regulation: Require banks to put their own capital at risk pro rata into every transaction the bank undertakes. Banks should be structured like insurers e.g. Loyds of London. Capital is provided by investors and is comingled with savings of depositors in the ratio of capital to savings described above. Savers receive interest while investors receive earnings distributions. Banks must report their capital to
    savings ratio which presumably will mean higher interest paid by poorly capitalized banks. A minimum capital to savings ratio may be imposed by law. Banks that cannot meet their contractual interest payment obligations will go bankrupt. Shareholders equity including working capital from investors will be distributed to savers in compensation for breach of interest obligations by the bank. Banks may require limitations on timing and amounts of savings withdrawal to avoid a run on the bank by depositors. There will be no provision under law to stop or interfere with the bankruptcy criterion
    or the bankrupt entities liquidation and distribution to depositors. This means no more too big to fail

  15. BC, getting into the nuts and bolts of policy is necessary. I am still working on it. I am schooling myself.

  16. If I may be so bold, include Steve Keen at in your cogitations.
    Feel free to email me if you want to compare notes.

  17. How I enjoy reading this blog and the comments of the bloggers. So many good thoughts being expressed I just have to let my smile be known. La La Laaaa! :-)

Comments are closed.