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  • The Insurgency

    Posted by Lexington Green on October 3rd, 2010 (All posts by )

    Once many years ago my father was sailing in a 30 foot sailboat on Nantucket Sound. The water was clear, and deep down in the water he saw a shape, that was unclear at first, but it got bigger and bigger, and soon its top fin broke the water. It was the largest shark he had ever seen. It was longer than the boat. It swam alongside for a few seconds, and probably not smelling anything good to eat, dipped back down and disappeared into the depths. If he had not been looking, he would not have seen it. He knows what he saw. Take it or leave it.

    Something very big may come out of the dark, deep water, and if you are looking in the right place, you will see it coming.

    I recently had a two part post on Right Network about the mass political movement which is developing in the USA, which I have called The Insurgency. Maybe I am all wrong about the size and importance of this movement. Maybe the shadows will not form and harden and rise into clarity and solid form. Maybe the mass movement will fizzle. Maybe politics will remain muddle and kludges. Or maybe I am looking in the right place at the right time. Take it or leave it.

    The first post is here. Excerpt:

    The Insurgency is a movement of citizens directed against unsustainable government taxation and regulation, and spending, both of which benefit insiders rather than ordinary people. The target of the Insurgency is a leviathan in Washington, D.C. that will ruin us all if it is not dismantled.
     
    The Insurgency is part of a long tradition of mass political movements in our history. It has the potential to make a fundamental change in American life—for the better.

    The second post is here. Excerpt:

    When the American political and economic system suffers a serious failure, we can no longer avoid taking a hard look at ourselves. We have to make fundamental decisions about what kind of country we want America to be. At such moments, people perceive that their basic values are being contested, and those who have a stake in the current system are, reasonably enough, afraid of change. People who see the urgent need for change resent the obstruction. Political rhetoric becomes heated, because a lot is at stake. This is also normal, as history shows.

    Stand by for an interesting historical period.

    [I am more than usually interested in our readers’ thoughts on this.]

     

    90 Responses to “The Insurgency”

    1. Roy Says:

      What can keep people from recognizing and responding to that obvious unsustainability? Responding will demand they decide not only no bennies for thee, none for me, either.

      Only people of decided principle will do that. That requires both people whose life training has presented that principle and whose internal morality provides the conviction to follow it.

      I think fireworks will happen. But not so sure these will lead to change.

    2. Mrs. Davis Says:

      In Generations Strauss and Howe lay out a theory for the sequence of generations with projections that continue to be surprisingly accurate. The coming crisis is not coming out of the dark. It is the inevitable overthrowing of a social system which has become so stagnant and corrupt that it is unable to deal creatively with the crises society is facing. Crises that have grown far greater than necessary due to the failure of the stagnant and corrupt system to deal with the problems when they were manageable. A new, uncorrupt system will be necessary to overcome the crises with new and creative solutions and it will gain legitimacy until with the passage of time it too ossifies and becomes corrupt, failing to address the new problems which have arisen, to be swept away by the next wave of change. And so it goes.

    3. John Says:

      It may be too late to change it but I’m troubled by the word “insurgency”. I understand how it is being used, I understand what it means, but I think it is unwise. The trouble is not what it denotes, but rather what it connotes, and associations of that kind matter in public discourse.

      A product good enough, a person competent or honest enough, a company reliable enough, etc. can live down being saddled with the wrong name and actually eventually turn it into something positive but it seems foolish to me to voluntarily saddle the ideas, the movement, or the people with that burden unnecessarily.

      fwiw.

    4. Sgt. Mom Says:

      I’ve sensed ‘something’ coming for about five years know – a sense that there is a disaster coming towards us, that there is something very, very wrong forming in the shadows, weaving itself together out of disparate elements. Some of these elements are a political class looking towards its own good at the expense of the larger. Then there is a partisan media, acting as a kind of king-maker: I was deeply outraged by the 60 Minutes/TANG hit-piece in 2004 – a major news outlet attempting to throw the election? The failure to uphold freedom of intellectual discussion in the matter of the Danish Motoons o’Doom. And then there was whole fraud that was man-made global warming. What the hell was happening – how the hell could this be happening, how could these transparent frauds be perpetuated and encouraged by sensible people? (The monstering of the Tea Parties was just icing on the cake.)The current economic melt-down is just one more element. It’s all coming to a head, but I can’t say when. Just soon.

    5. Purpleslog Says:

      I think “insurgency” is the correct term.

    6. Corwin Says:

      I have felt it coming for the past few years. As others have noted, the when and how are murky; however the feeling grows stronger. I cannot see any way today’s problems are addressed without drastic action. The coming November elections might help to mitigate the damage, or exacerbate them. Each road looks darker than the previous one.

    7. J. Scott Says:

      Lex,

      I hope sincerely that your assessment of the impending demise of the leviathan state is correct, but I remain skeptical. Is their a precedent for any ruling class to divest this much power? The Brits gave up their Empire, but this is a different beast.

      Americans have a short attention span and love cutting federal spending as long as their entitlement isn’t cut. I saw an estimate recently that said almost half of the population receives some sort of federal funding. It’s like the proverbial phrase about Social Security being the “4th rail” in politics and has proven to be true. When I became politically aware in the late 70’s/early 80’s it was still fashionable for conservatives to advocate the repeal of SS—when it became apparent that the position was a loser, the tune changed to “reform.” If the GOP takes back the House (and hopefully the Senate) and begins cutting/defunding, etc—the caterwauling will begin and the MSM, Oprah, and every leftist with video will mark out victim after victim of those rascally, insensitive tea party republicans T.o achieve what you have described so eloquently will require people with the political courage (and probably physical courage) and vision to cut granny’s Medicare part D (thanks a bunch for that W), school lunches, closing down parks, etc. And a lot of Americans will see the images and recoil. I have no confidence that Boehner (and certainly not Cantor) has the stomach to shut down the government for an extended period. And Obama will call his hand—just as Clinton did to Gingrich—and Newt blinked.

      We’ll stay tuned.

    8. Mrs. Davis Says:

      It will keep getting darker, like 1778, 1864 or 1942. People will doubt the ability of the country to survive. But we will emerge stronger, better prepared to face the future led by a generation of leaders we never imagined existed. Not a doubt in my mind.

    9. Michael Kennedy Says:

      I was reassured by Boehner’s speech in which he said they would change appropriations to individual bills, not these huge monstrosities that shut the government down if vetoed. That suggests he has a strategy to deal with cutting spending. The colleges have, unfortunately, been indoctrinating kids with leftist belief for 20 years now. That is not a hopeful sign. The young people who show up at tea party rallies seem to be the religious ones while the older folks are mostly libertarian in outlook. It will be a battle, especially trying to end government employee unions. I suspect that the battle, if it goes forward, will also be a period of isolationism for the US as it struggles to get the financial ship righted.

    10. tyouth Says:

      You may be quite right about the Republican Party being the first to lose. My own case may exemplar in the last presidential campaign. I kept supporting the most conservative and (I believe) reasonable choice and kept losing right down the line. In the end I voted reluctantly for McCain. If a RHINO happens again I’ll write in the outsider-long-shot or perhaps not waste my time voting in the final election.

      BTW, thanks for the introduction to the Right Network. The zombie poster will make a super screen saver.

    11. foxmarks Says:

      You made up the descriptor, so it can mean whatever you want it to mean. “Tea Party” wasn’t inclusive enough, and you don’t feel that “war” is an accurate description of the current strife.

      The Anti-War movement, as you frame it, was a single-issue faction. But you define The Insurgency explicitly as multi-issue. The parallel doesn’t make sense to me.

      I do not see an Insurgency. I see many factions with overlapping views and shared enemies. But to give those factions a united label is, at best premature.

      Perhaps the Big Thing is not one big thing, but the Long Tail coming back to whip the head. Why can’t the political sphere experience the same joyous fragmentation as the cultural and economic?

      If I try to work with what I understand this Insurgency to mean, they’re going to be disappointed with the minimal change one election can bring. Sure, the slither to further statism can be slowed. But with their cries to “repeal and replace” Obamacare, some Insurgent factions show that they still want power and control.

      And the progressives will not take their losses well. That’s where the blood will begin to spill.

    12. J. Scott Says:

      Foxmarks:

      “I do not see an Insurgency. I see many factions with overlapping views and shared enemies. But to give those factions a united label is, at best premature.

      “If I try to work with what I understand this Insurgency to mean, they’re going to be disappointed with the minimal change one election can bring. Sure, the slither to further statism can be slowed. But with their cries to “repeal and replace” Obamacare, some Insurgent factions show that they still want power and control.

      “And the progressives will not take their losses well. That’s where the blood will begin to spill.”

      That’s a pretty good series of comments, but your get-away line is prescient by half—the so-called progressives have no reluctance to use violence. When I was writing my original comment, I remarked and then deleted something similar. Obama is a creature of the streets, and his justice department has signaled that voter intimidation is ok (which makes him an de-facto accomplice) —don’t be surprised if things get ramped up before, during, and after the election. There is a part of me that believe he would like nothing more than violence in the street that required a muscular federal response—and of course, the media would blame it on the tea party/sympathizers.

    13. Bob Z. Says:

      Come gather ’round people
      Wherever you roam
      And admit that the waters
      Around you have grown
      And accept it that soon
      You’ll be drenched to the bone.
      If your time to you
      Is worth savin’
      Then you better start swimmin’
      Or you’ll sink like a stone
      For the times they are a-changin’.

      Come senators, congressmen
      Please heed the call
      Don’t stand in the doorway
      Don’t block up the hall
      For he that gets hurt
      Will be he who has stalled
      There’s a battle outside ragin’.
      It’ll soon shake your windows
      And rattle your walls
      For the times they are a-changin’.

      The revolution may be coming – just 50 years later than the Boomers thought it would.

    14. foxmarks Says:

      J. Scott:

      I’ve been arguing that we are already at war. And I think I see the same history of violence in the progressive lineage. It is not hard for me to construct a scenario where the street lefties start violence that will give the elected lefties an excuse to enact some form of martial law. It’s not a conspiracy by either faction, but just the way their tendencies are likely to reinforce each other.

      My big open question about the coming period of violent upheaval is: Which side will the cops land on?

    15. Lexington Green Says:

      Foxmarks, are you a Lefty poser?

      Stop advocating violence on my blog.

      I will not be associated with it.

      Get your own blog and say whatever you want there.

      First and only warning.

    16. Al Teichmiller Says:

      I don’t believe this is anything new. This goes back at least to the group that Spiro Agnew called the Silent Majority. These were the middle class Americans who trusted the country and its values. As the anti-war movement gained momentum, they slowly became aware that the U.S. was not wholly in the right in the Viet Nam War. The idea that it was even possible that we were wrong was shocking. The way the war ended coupled with the subsequent disgrace of Nixon completed disheartened them.

      The appalling Carter administration was the catalyst to revitalize this group. This was at least a part of the Reagan victory. There was still a distrust of government. The Reagan and Bush presidencies slowed the growth of government, but did not accomplish what the conservative, middle class wanted. The current Tea Party insurgency was seen in the Ross Perot vote in 1992. All this did was take votes from Bush and put Clinton in.

      The next few elections were the lesser-of-two-evils situations. Clinton turned very centrist. Dole did mot energize conservatives. W was not real appealing, but seemed a better choice than Gore or Kerry. It has taken the Obama administration to again waken this sleeping giant.

      The members of the group have changed through the years, but their roots are the same. This is a middle class group that tries to play by the rules. They pay their taxes, raise their families, hope for the best and still distrust the government. They (we) feel powerless and don’t know what to do. A third party vote has been shown not to be the solution. Does the Tea Party need to establish itself more? Can the Republican Party answer this groups needs?

    17. Michael Kennedy Says:

      At the University of Arizona, freshman students are taught that the “silent majority” was made up of whites opposed to the Civil Rights Act of 1964. I was appalled when I learned this and wonder how many of these students will eventually learn the truth.

    18. Lexington Green Says:

      Michael, the establishment takes tax money and tuition money and purveys lies.

      Most will never learn the truth.

      Bill Ayers won.

      The long march through the institutions was a victory.

      Nonetheless, the system that the framework of lies exists to sustain cannot survive because it can’t be paid for.

      Parents are not going to pay for the privilege of having their children brainwashed at massive, unaffordable expense much longer.

      That scam is ending.

    19. Subotai Bahadur Says:

      foxmarks Says:

      My big open question about the coming period of violent upheaval is: Which side will the cops land on?

      They will be split, with a portion siding with the regime, and the majority, I believe, standing with the Constitution.

      Anecdotes are not evidence, but at our precinct caucuses both of our Republican candidates for Sheriff [out here in the West, County Sheriff is the chief law enforcement officer of the County and can over-ride local law enforcement]were publicly asked, “What will you do if a higher level of government orders you to do something that violates the Constitution?”. Both candidates, neither having heard the other, replied: “We will obey our oaths to the US and Colorado Constitutions. If pressed, we will stand our ground.”.

      For some reason, I admit that I rather expect that the question never arose at the other side’s caucuses.

      Colorado Peace Officers swear to preserve, protect, defend, and uphold both the US and Colorado Constitutions. In my 28 years on the job, I carried a copy of the US Constitution on me every day. I know I was far from alone.

      In my town, cops have stated that if they are ordered to disarm the populace, they will take the badge off and walk away.

      Now, the Federales may have a different view. I know personally of an ICE agent who is not shy about saying that Federal law enforcement is above both the Constitution and the law, and they can do as they please to any civilian. He claims that is their doctrine. It may well be. Or he may simply be expressing his well known personal resemblance to a certain fundamental bodily orifice. In any case, I think that there will be a split in law enforcement. In smaller towns where the cops are part of the community; there will be stronger support for the Constitution. In larger cities, and at the Federal level; there is already an affinity to being part of an occupying army.

      Times will be interesting if it comes down to such a decision. Events will turn on how many remember the Oath they swore, the one that never expires.

      Subotai Bahadur

    20. KMarx Says:

      Uh, that’s “3rd” rail, not 4th, J. Scott.

    21. Anonymous Says:

      With respect, I suggest that Foxmarks is discussing violence because he is opposed to it.

      If violence happens, what would be the appropriate response. Against British India, non-violence worked. Against the Nazis or Japanese, that would have been unsuccessful.

      The Weather Underground planned to murder 25 million Americans after they took over, as that was their estimate of the number who would not change even after being put through their reeducation camps. That would but them somewhere between the Nazis who murdered some 11 millions in their camps, and the Soviets who murdered about 60 millions over their 70 years of misrule. (those figures don’t count war)

      We don’t know who the violent ones will be, and we don’t know to what their ends will evolve. That leads to uncertainty and concern. I suggest that the right answer is to respond to violence at first with non-violence, but not to obey pretended laws which would make greater violence easier. In other words, do not register privately owned arms, do not permit confiscation of means of self defense, do not permit confiscation or registration of ammunition.

    22. No thanks Says:

      “Which side will the cops land on?”

      Whoever supplies them their ricebowl. Duh.

    23. Hogarth Says:

      “Stop advocating violence on my blog.”

      Unless you’ve already deleted comments from him, I saw him do no such thing. I saw a reasoned analysis that indicates that the situation is ripe for violence to occur.

    24. RebeccaH Says:

      I know very little about politics, other than the status quo cannot continue if this nation is to survive. I spent a couple of days handing out voter guides from the Abigail Adams Project in front of the polls (Ohio has early voting), and I can say that the voters are very motivated in their votes, and some are downright steamed. I take everything I read on the internet with a grain of caution, but I know that what I saw at the polls this last week was very interesting indeed. Take it or leave it.

    25. geekWithA.45 Says:

      The necessity for the dismantlement of leviathan is plain, and most people can see it, even if they can’t articulate it.

      The question will turn on two questions:

      1) Whether leviathan can be kludged and retrofit so as not to fall apart

      and

      2) Whether these remedial measures are sufficient to pacify enough of the crowd that critical mass for concensus is lost or becomes plainly unsustainable.

      The arcs of history generally show us that it isn’t until the established order is weak that it can be induced to implode, if it doesn’t do so of its own accord.

      If it’s strong, it’ll patch itself into a facsimile of working order, which is usually sufficient to pacify the centrists, who then with hold their objection as the hard liners are swept off the stage under the color of law & order.

      This pattern of patches & pacification has been pretty consistent all through our period of Constitutional decay.

      The problem with the Tea Party Movement is that it’s about “smaller” government, and “less” taxes. We The People have been bought off with 1%-3% reductions before, rather than bona fide game changers, and the establishment has dusted off that playbook and is betting that it’ll work again.

      The TPM is a glimmer of hope, at best. When the voices calling for “Constitutional government” are louder than the voices calling for “less government”, when the people start acting as if they understand that the fedgov has been operating with stolen powers not justly delegated to them, and that he undistorted meaning of the commerce clause is to provide the federal government with the power to bring order, method and uniformity to the large scale, bulk transportation of goods between states, rather than apply whatever arbitrary rule it likes upon any business endeavor, and are not going to be satisfied with anything less than the radical proposition that government conform itself to the document that creates and validates it, *then* there might be change of game afoot.

      Sometimes, the shadow emerging from the depths isn’t a shark. Sometimes, it’s a school of guppies.

      Right now, I don’t know how to call our current state, other than as “necessary, but of unknown sufficiency”.

    26. richard40 Says:

      The electorate rejected the war mongering, crony capitalism, and false conservatism (Bush was never a small government fiscal conservative, there was more to conservatism than ranting against gays and talking about God) of Bush, and elected Obama. But Obama’s brand of fundamental change was even worse. He continued the crony capitalist policies of Bush (while simultaneously bashing capitalism, and ruining the honest, productive, non-crony capitalists who did not want government favors, and would not play the DC game and fork over the campaign dollars). Then he added on blant favoritism to union and environmentalist fat cats, and big spending socialism. It has gotten to the point where there are only 2 kinds of people left. Those with DC connections, who get lavish favoritism and handouts with guaranteed lifetime employment and lavish pensions, and everybody else, who gets huge taxes and regulations, and a few paltry handouts once they go broke and start begging the government for help.

      We do indeed need a fundamental transformation, Obama was right there. But it needs to be toward LESS government, not more. The only way to end the cronyism and special favors from DC is to trim back the federal government to the point that it is no longer worth bribing, because you can make more money producing something real in the private economy, rather than spending all your effort trying to get a better share of the big government favors available.

      But, as another commenter stated, this transformation wont be complete until the average american not only opposes unearned handouts for others, but also for themselves. It will also require a sustained commitment and constant vigilance over several election cycles, not just a big spasm in 2010. I’m not sure Americans are ready for that, but if we are not, the only alternative is Greece.

    27. K T Cat Says:

      The problem we face is a cultural one, not subject to political or economic solutions. When we rejected traditional morality we destroyed the foundation of society, the nuclear family. Until we go back to that, we’ll spend untold trillions trying to replace it with government programs. For forty years that’s proven to be a failure.

    28. Columbia's Bayonet Says:

      Interesting name you’ve chosen to blog with “Mr Green”.

      Fear not! I know an awful lot of people that take their oath extremely seriously. Enough so to put themselves in harms way to fulfill it.

      God Bless you “Mr Green”.

      And God Bless America!

    29. Bob Smyth Says:

      Yes I agree,” GENERATIONS” (Strauss and Howe) is amazingly accurate. But as a kind of handbook to speed yourself up as to what is happening now and what is coming they have a follow up book, “THE FOURTH TURNING”.
      I think more than “ATLAS SHRUGS” it is more valuable a read except perhaps for the real story of today, “GULLIVERS’ TRAVELS”.

      Enjoy your wonder-filled day

    30. Lexington Green Says:

      Two people have now told me that FoxMarks was not over the line.

      I take these corrections seriously.

      I will leave all the relevant comments up.

      Everyone can read them all and see what they think.

      I do not want to quash thoughtful responses.

      I am sensitive on this point.

    31. Becky Says:

      Like others, I’m surprised that you took umbrage at Foxmarks comments. Considering your shark analogy, I suspect you misread his point. Note above the factual comment about Bill Ayers’ Weather Underground wanting to murder 25 million people. If you truly believe Ayers won the long march through the institutions then perhaps you have seen the shark and just can not believe your eyes.

      The fin has broken the water and the shape is not all that hard to recognize. Take it or leave it.

    32. Mrs. Davis Says:

      I suggest that Foxmarks is discussing violence because he is opposed to it.

      I suggest that Foxmarks is discussing violence because he is an agent provocateur.

      There is no desire, will or need for violence domestically except among those who seek to advance their minority viewpoint with it. Domestically we are much less violent than in the 1960s let alone the 1850s. In the century from 1864 to 1963 four Presidents were assassinated. In the half century since none have been and those attempted were by nut jobs as opposed to politically motivated actors. The general public is not going to react positively to those discussing violence to implement their policy. To do so is to invite alienation from the general public. We are going to undergo dramatic changes, but discussion of violence is at best premature.

      But I will agree with Foxmarks that Insurgency is perhaps not the best moniker. The Resurgency seems more appropriate to me as this is truly a revolutionary moment in the sense of revolving back to where we departed from the path on which the founders set us.

    33. shannon Love Says:

      I think the Insurgency is real and will win out because of technology change.

      Forms of organization, political or otherwise, are dictated by information technology. The specific forms of militaries, businesses, governments and political parties are defined by the means by which information can be distributed. From the early 1800s to the late 1900s, information technology mandated a hierarchal pyramid form of organization.

      Single-peer to multi-peer communication (e.g a blog) was very difficult when using paper or single signal broadcast. Instead, localized peers communicated solely with a single immediate superior node. A collection of those nodes communicated with a single node at the next level and so on until the final topmost single node was reached. However, superior nodes could easily broadcast a single message to inferior nodes. This gave those who occupied upper nodes a far, far greater ability to communicate their views than those in the bottom most modes.

      The pinnacle of this form of organization was reached in the large, vertically integrated American corporations of the early 1900s. Political theorist all over the world saw the staggering success of people like Henry Ford and decided to emulate it in government. This laid down the template for collectivist ideology in the 20th century: The totality of society was to be run like a giant unionized factory. A benevolent elite would serve in the role of the board, management, engineering and union leadership. Just as a relatively small group of technical and managerial specialist used the organization of the factory to direct a large number of relatively unspecialized workers, a similar group of technocrats and enlightened politicians would use the organization of the state to direct the whole of society.

      Through flawed this idea did work fairly well especially for managing large single focus projects like the TVA, going to the moon or fighting wars.

      However, technological change rendered that hierarchal pyramid form of organization obsolete. As work became more complex, “workers” increasingly became decision-makers in their own right. A rising tide of front line specialist often meant that the lowest people in the hierarchy often had more knowledge about how to best do their jobs than those higher up. The development of single-peer to multi-peer communications meant that peers no longer needed superior nodes just to communicate with one another. Organization in the military and business began to flatten out. Small, decentralized and always evolving replaced large, centralized and rigidly structured.

      Unfortunately, or perhaps fortunately, the left is still ideologically stuck in the 1950s at the peak of hierarchal organization. All the ideas of contemporary leftists are set like concrete in that era. They cannot even image any form of organization other than that of a giant factory with themselves as the management. Just as the aristocrats of the 1700s believed that democracy was nothing but anarchy, the contemporary left cannot believe a non-hierarchial government (or a lack of government all together) can be anything but a society of brutes in which the strong prey on the weak.

      They are regressives, dinosaurs puzzled by hoards of tiny birds, mammals scampering around their feet. They can’t understand that times have changed and instead look only to recreate their glory days of old. In this they will lose just as the aristocrats lost to democracy.

      The middle-class has always been the source of all real, just permanent change. The middle-class created democracy. The middle-class created the vertically integrated institutions the left so loves. Now the middle-class has moved on to decentralized modes of organizations enabled by the latest technology.

      The middle-class always wins because they embody the true economic and moral strength society. The middle-class is pragmatic, using the best tools of the times. This is the true heart of the insurgency against the “factory” institutions.

      That is why the middle-class insurgency will win.

    34. Mrs. Davis Says:

      If you truly believe Ayers won the long march through the institutions then perhaps you have seen the shark and just can not believe your eyes.

      Ayres may have won the long march through the institutions, but the result was not that his position prevailed in society, but that the institutions were discredited. Much of what will change in the next decade is the creation of new institutions to replace those that, captured by the Ayres of our times, have then failed by departing from our foundation. I’d include educational, mass communications, political and mainline religious institutions in the parts of society that will change dramatically in the next 10 years or so.

    35. stan Says:

      I only partially agree with your statement that the Left’s long march through the institutions was successful. Yes, they succeeding in capturing the universities, mainline churches, tv and movies, and the news media. But they thought by so doing they would also capture the hearts and minds of the American public. And in that regard, their success has been far more limited. The capture of those institutions merely resulted in their degradation and diminishing influence. The insurgency is really about the fact that, despite decades of assault from the left, the core American values still resonate for a majority of Americans.

      The insurgency is obviously due to many factors. Pared to it’s essence, though, it has arrived now because a critical mass of people have finally been forced to pay attention to what the Left is about. They really didn’t want to tune in, but the Obama/Pelosi legislative agenda couldn’t be ignored. Even those who hate politics had no choice but to notice, and they are appalled.

      We can point to the importance of the rise of the internet and (talk radio before that) as critical because it ended the news media’s monopoly on information. Clearly, it’s a factor. Lots of other influences all contributed (financial crisis and TARP, housing losses, market volatility, unemployment, European meltdowns, etc.). They all helped to create concerns and dissatisfaction. But where we are now is about more than the debt, or the spending, or healthcare, or climate bills, or the takeover of GM, etc. Now that people have tuned in, a lot of them have noticed that the Left is trying to change what makes us American. They don’t like it and they plan to fix it.

      One could argue that the Left’s capture of the institutions probably ended up damaging Obama, Pelosi, and Co because it fooled them into misreading the American public.

    36. stan Says:

      I see that Shannon Love and Mrs Davis were posting as I was typing. And we are mostly in agreement. Technology surely has made it easy to bypass the news media monopoly on information. It’s interesting to speculate at how the public would have reacted to socialized healthcare and all the rest without the internet. Opposition would have been harder to mount, but as talk radio did in 1994, I think that the public still would have been roused to anger.

      But in the end, the insurgency is due to the fact that the dogs don’t like the dog food. A majority of Americans don’t like socialism, don’t want it, and won’t accept it.

    37. Bill Says:

      I sympathize greatly with the Tea Party/Insurgency, whatever you want to call it. The real acid test will be what happens after it succeeds electorally. Then it will be time to cut Grandma’s Social Security and Medicare. It feels good to oppose Obama/Nancy/Barney, etc. But only time will tell if we are serious or not. I hope we are.

    38. Astroprisoner Says:

      Time to dig out a copy of Strauss & Howe’s The Fourth Turning. The subtitle is “An American Prophecy.” It looks more and more as though they were right.

    39. ngvrnd Says:

      “Dead Flag Blues” by Godspeed You! Black Emperor is the soundtrack to this comment thread, and perhaps to this decade.

      “Each road looks darker than the previous one.” Nice.

    40. J. Scott Says:

      Mrs. Davis said:

      “There is no desire, will or need for violence domestically except among those who seek to advance their minority viewpoint with it.”

      The left is the minority in this country and routinely resort to violence. The evidence is there for anyone paying attention. We have more to fear from the disgruntled zealots on the left than terrorism—for the zealots are Marxists, who by and large, see the USA as the problem in the world. The modern left/progressives and the jihadis share this outlook, one reason the left will defend only one religion.

    41. Richard Says:

      Lex, I’ve not doubt that your father saw a shark rise from the depths. Nothing concentrates the mind like a shark in the water. And, too, nothing focuses the the polity like a constricting economy trending mayhaps to “depression”, and political castles built on wishes and fantasies – “hope and change” – crumble in light of rational calculations imposed by fundamental needs to secure survival – individually and collectively.

      When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. The “Flower Children” né “Baby Boomers” have dominated and directed the political economy to fulfill their evanescent dreams of “fairness” and “equality” and “rights.” Now, those aging children are compelled to make choices between their dreams of the future and the reality of their- and their progenies – futures – realizing that none can continue to live the way they have “become accustomed to living.” And, so, there is a quaking abroad that has generated an “anger” – the tantrum of a child denied.

      Yes, “insurrection” is a proper characterization for this moment. In this reckoning, the luxury of differences between parties that began with the Goldwater and McGovern division cannot afford to feed upon social morals or utopian dream – the things of a child. The “insurrection” is a step to the “convergence” of the parties, as the the wings of each are seen a impractical to the needs of the present. The ideal of a “difference between the parties” is a chimera that will become extinct as the world grows “real” – grounded on economic and national security.

      A “convergence” of the parties will promote operational efficiencies throughout all governmental functions, and guarantee honest administration by making the choice of “voting ’em out” only a course adjustment to remedy maladministration – than a course of government lurching left or right between antipodes – utopian or theoretical – hewing to a meandering middle course. Convergence will lessen the cost of government, and becalm the public debate.

      But, first, “The Insurrection.”

    42. Yehudit Says:

      Everything Mrs Davis said, except for Foxmarks being an agent provocateur. I think he was just discussing possibilities which I think are very low, but should be acknowledged. However, even bringing them up is so inflaming that maybe anyone doing so should make the very first sentence of their post a strong disclaimer making clear they are not advocating violence.

      “….Is their a precedent for any ruling class to divest this much power?” [VOLUNTARILY]. The Brits gave up their Empire, but this is a different beast……”

      This question needs that qualifier. Many ruling classes have been forced to divest of that much power. Voluntarily? In addition to the Brits, I am thinking of the Soviet Union. They were pressured, but so were the Brits.

    43. David N. Narr Says:

      Mrs. Davis re: discrediting of major societal institutions.

      You are Right.On.

    44. charles austin Says:

      The violence has already started. Look at the international confabs that draw violent anarchists, or Greece, or ecoterrorism, or 10:10 for that matter. Somewhat analagous to the requisite feelings toward Big Brother in 1984, it seems as though it isn’t enough to be sheep any longer, we must be frightened sheep.

    45. mike sechrist Says:

      Frodo has left the Shire.

    46. Freshcut Says:

      Very interesting string. I believe that what we are going to witness in the next 12 months will be the viability of the current two party system. The rise of the Insurgency, aka Tea Party, will sweep the Republican party back into power in one or both houses of Congress. It is a marriage of convenience that will dissolve the minute there is back-sliding on the Pledge to reduce government spending. It is easier to take over and/or re-focus an existing party than to start anew. However, IMHO, the Democrats are headed for the sidelines for decades and the Republicans will soon join them if they don’t “walk the walk” they have pledged. A legitimate 3rd party is difficult to create and will take years to become a power, but the Insurgency has shown us nothing but that it is more possible than anytime in our lifetimes. The Republicans are getting a ‘do-over’, but only as the lesser of two evils. It will be “interesting” indeed to see what they make of it.

    47. Lexington Green Says:

      Yehudit, that sounds like a fair assessment.

      NGVRND, holy crap, man, that is dark, dark, dark. Making the next decade NOT be like that is what we want to do. Some people find it fun to make cryptic music about mass death and society collapsing into ruins. I just happen to like too many people, and too much stuff, and I don’t want them all to die, or all of it to get wrecked. I see no reason any of that would have to happen. I sure don’t want it to.

    48. Lexington Green Says:

      OK, I was being too brief when I said Ayers won.

      The long march was very successful.

      But the institutions themselves are badly damaged, and a new wave of opposition is arising, and new institutions are being created, and generational change pushes new ideas and rejection of old ideas.

      So, more than a battle, less than a war was lost. A campaign, perhaps.

    49. Swen Swenson Says:

      geekWithA.45 said:
      “The problem with the Tea Party Movement is that it’s about “smaller” government, and “less” taxes. We The People have been bought off with 1%-3% reductions before, rather than bona fide game changers, and the establishment has dusted off that playbook and is betting that it’ll work again.”

      Yes, when the Republican establishment Pledges not to shrink government but to “put common-sense limits on the growth of government” (Page 21 of the Pledge to America), it’s obvious that they hope to throw a sop to the TEA Party and the fiscal conservatives to keep them on board while they continue business as usual, except with themselves in control. I also fear that the TEA Parties will buy it and be weakened, if not quieted.

      On the other hand, there is reason for hope. We well remember the Contract With America and how quickly that was forgotten as the Republicans got their hands on the checkbook and forgot their fiscal conservative small-government ideals in an orgy of spending. Many of us were shocked and appalled as they began “spending like drunken sailors”. Then along came the Obama administration and proved that they could teach a drunken sailor a thing or two about spending.

      If people were shocked before, we’re furious now. We were fooled before by the Contract With America and it’s apparent that the Republican establishment think they can fool us again, but it’s my hope that we won’t be fooled again. Not ever.

      Those commenters who’ve noted that the internet and talk radio are game-changers are right. We denizens of the internet must keep the pressure on. Throw out the liberal rascals now and then, because third parties have proven to be a losing proposition, settle in for the harder work of reforming the Republican establishment from the bottom up. At the least it will take three election cycles to clean house in the Senate. We’ve got to be in this for the long haul because we will meet resistance. Worse, we will meet politicians willing to make any promise to keep their power (what’s next, a Pinky Swear With America?).

      We’ve got to convince them that promises aren’t enough, that this time we want real, substantial action. We must rein in the government leviathan. The alternative is unthinkable. Above all, we must remember that the leviathan state cannot be turned from its course overnight. It took a long while to come to this state of affairs, it will take a long while to make the changes that need to be made. We must have determination and patience, we must not fall for their promises. We’ll make a good start November 2nd but we must remember that it is only a start.

    50. Tim Von Dater Says:

      Mike Sechrist sez: “Frodo has left the Shire.”

      There’s a story in that bare sentence, and an observation which I believe true.
      Brevity is indeed the soul of wit.

    51. morgan Says:

      It’s going to be a long hard slog. Several obstacle will have to be overcome. A third party faces a major obstacle in the form of ballot access. [This is an on-going problem faced by the Libertarian Party.]. Ballot access differs from state to state with many states providing great difficulties in a third party getting on the ballot–mainly in the form of collecting petitions in the thousands. It can be done but it diverts precious resources away from getting the message out.

      That leads to reforming/taking over an existing party. And both present problems. In the Republican Party you have your Carl Roves, Lisa Murkowskis, and Mike Castles who detest the thought of we unwashed taking over their party and will fight the “insurgents–a proper term in my mind–tooth and nail. The Democrats are even a tougher nut to crack thanks to the so-called McGovern Rules adopted in 1972. These rule, essentially, establsih quotos for delegates to the DEmocratic convention–so many black, women, gays, ets. These rule effectively handed control of the party to the hard left and we see thge results in today’s Democratic Party’s politicians, and officials. The result of this is plain to see in today’s political climate. Another factor that keeps both parties on life support in the federal financing of presidential election–voluntary acceptance to be sure. But the millions available from this source can keep a moribund party on life support until the next cycle of feeding from the public trough.

      I guess the point of this rambling is that our Hurculean task of cleaning out our Augean stables isn’t going to happen overnight and we’d better be prepared for a long, hard slog. I hope I’m wrong and we can get ride of the problem overnight, but my pessimistic nature says otherwise.

    52. PenGun Says:

      Bin Laden said he would draw you into a conflict that would destroy you economically. Close but no cigar.

      You are perfectly capable of destroying yourselves with no help at all.

      As Keynesian economics has failed the schemes it espouses are not useful. It has failed because nothing expands forever. It is a very interesting time indeed. The governments that depend on fiat money, all of em’, are doomed to massive economic failure.

      This is your shark in the water and your boat is sinking fast.

    53. Keith Says:

      I would like to see more talk of another velvet revolution than a hot one. Do we really want to hold this country together (either by violence or just puttering along) when so many fundamental values are in conflict? I don’t want to force the Lefties to abide by my way of living. Let them have their own fairy land–and more power to ’em! Our outlooks are so different as to be unreconcilable. Which is fine if you allow the two camps to live out their own lives as they see fit.

      What needs to be done is to agree to split the country. Do so in an equitable way, agreed to by both sides. It didn’t destroy the Czech Republic or Slovakia and may have cut short a civil war. Both sides walked away happy.

      Sounds like a good idea to me. And at least then we would be able to see which system works and which doesn’t. We’d be doing the entire world a favor.

    54. Keith Says:

      Oh, and if you all really believed in what you’re preaching, you should just get right on and do it. Its unbecoming to see people trying a bit too hard to convince others of their position. In the end, you either act or get off the pot.

    55. Brad E. Says:

      “I don’t believe this is anything new. This goes back at least to the group that Spiro Agnew called the Silent Majority.”

      It goes back a good bit farther than that. For example, William Sumner’s article The Forgotten Man, circa the early 1880s, and so ably recalled more recently by Amity Shlaes’ book bearing the same title, is still absolutely on-point regarding the perils of the social welfare state. Whether Agnew’s Silent Majority, Sumner’s Forgotten Man, or even Samuel Adams’ admonition that “leveling schemes” and “community goods” are impractical, despotic and unconstitutional in our system of government, the dangers of the collectivist dream have long been absolutely clear to many of our fellow citizens.

      Insurgency? Perhaps, but before placing much hope in the ability of any political movement to dismantle enough of the present system to make a tangible difference, please do stop to consider whose ox will be gored in such a great unwinding: not only entitlement and transfer payment recipients but also crony capitalists and their political masters, along with all of the white collar professionals whose careers and lifestyles depend absolutely on, at minimum, the maintenance of the present bloated bureaucratic regulatory state. Sum the total of all federal, state & local government spending then add to that the imposed cost of all federal, state & local government regulation (said cost being a very significant fraction of GDP and counted solely as private sector activity) and ask how, precisely, that can be unwound in any meaningful way when such represents a significant majority of our present economy.

      If from the New Deal to the Great Society we ceded our financial liberty to the ruling class in exchange for the promise of a social safety net then in the latter half of the Twentieth Century we feted those of the ruling class to whose siren songs we fell sway while ceding ever more of our liberty to our masters in exchange for ever more promises of governmental protection from private harm until today we find ourselves in thrall of a rapacious state without clear boundaries or meaningful restraint. Short a complete collapse or revolution I fail to see how that can be undone, there exist simply too many vested interests to allow it.

      There is indeed a dark shape moving near the surface. It is likely not, however a long past-due insurrection as such now seems an impossibility, but is instead almost certainly leviathan rising to consume the dying remnants of our “true” private sector and with them the scant remains of our liberty. The insurrection will certainly occur but not, I believe, until after the utter collapse which must necessarily come first. We’re not near there yet.

    56. Lexington Green Says:

      Keith: “Its unbecoming to see people trying a bit too hard to convince others of their position.” But you are reading a blog? Funny. More to the point: Mass political movements involve some talk, some action, some more talk, some more action.

      Brad E.: I agree with much of what you say, as I said in the articles. The hope is we can get people to see the scope of the failure, get buy-in on an equitably distributed haircut for Leviathan’s stakeholders, and wind it up without a systemic collapse. Hopefully possible. That is the goal, as far as I am concerned.

    57. J. Scott Says:

      “….Is there a precedent for any ruling class to divest this much power?” [VOLUNTARILY]. The Brits gave up their Empire, but this is a different beast……” {fixed the usage problem}

      “This question needs that qualifier. Many ruling classes have been forced to divest of that much power. Voluntarily? In addition to the Brits, I am thinking of the Soviet Union. They were pressured, but so were the Brits.”

      As it turns out, the Russians exchanged Soviet totalitarianism for oligarchic kleptocracy peopled by many of the same characters from the commie days.

      The power of the US federal government is enormous, and Washington seductive. Remember the what happened to the 1994 reformers—they drank the Potomac kool-aid, and followed the spending/patronage model to retain power. So while we may be having an insurgency of sorts, there needs to be a consistent and persistent articulation of the principles that define success (the rag the GOP aired last week wasn’t even a band-aid given the condition of the patient). As posted earlier, don’t be surprised when the “not in my backyard syndrome” kicks in.

    58. onparkstreet Says:

      The use of the word insurgency bothers me a bit, too. The TEA party is not a violent movement, but many would love to portray it as so and have already made that smear. I just don’t know how I feel about it.

      I prefer the whole “open-source” network terminology. It’s accurate and it engenders a certain amount of curiousity from those who might normally ignore or be alarmed by the subject.

      HotAir has highlighted a story about a house that was supposedly left to burn because the owners didn’t pay a 75 dollar fee? I only glanced at the story but it has, like, 1000 comments. If the Republicans, complete with TEA party candidates, takes back the House we will see a lot of this. And people who like the idea on paper will blanche at the specifics and stories will appear like the house fire story to scare people.

      People will be scared, too. Human beings crave security and safety in some arenas. It is human nature.

      – Madhu

      *I envision this as a life long process, slow, difficult and confusing.

    59. onparkstreet Says:

      To clarify my muddled comment above: we will see a lot of stories about heartless libertarians in the future, especially if the Republicans win big.

      – Madhu

    60. Lexington Green Says:

      One big difference between the 1994 scenario and now is that the economy was apparently chugging along OK. You could just get dealt into the game. Today, the casino is bankrupt. The game is going to end, one way or another. Major reform is not going to be optional. The money to pay the government’s commitments, at all levels, does not exist, and it is not going to exist. You can kick the can down the road, until you run out of road.

    61. onparkstreet Says:

      @ LG: Fair enough. It may be that people are scared enough to look at entitlement reform seriously.

      – Madhu

    62. Anonymous Says:

      I support getting rid of the minimum wage, but unlike a fair chunk of Republicans (who seem to be of the sort caricatured by the Left), I say get rid of it last.

      Someone suggested closing parks and such, and perhaps that will be neccessary, but again get rid of them last.

      Its notable that the first line of defense of a bueraucrat to cuts is to threaten to close the library and the fire station and the lightpoles. In other words, get rid of things that are actually popular.

      Well, so it is with minimum wage to some degree. Also attacking it means you make the Lefties job easier.

      So we get rid of corporate welfare first, and congressional overspending on themselves second, and really stupidly grotesque boondoggles third, and privatize SS fourth, and minimum wage fifth, and parks last.

      This target list proves that we’re more than the mouthpieces of the Big Businessman who wants money and and end to social conservatism so he can party with his secretart with no social blame. It also attacks the weakest elements first,a nd lets us build strength and skill through victories.

    63. Lexington Green Says:

      Madhu, in this post I defined 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 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.

      However, the metaphorical nature of the thing will be lost on some people

      Anyway, I don’t think my term is likely to catch on. People will most likely just say “the Tea Party movement,” even though I think we are seeing something bigger than just that.

      We’ll see what happens.

    64. Miriam Says:

      .
      Basking Shark.

      Largest shark – can grow to 30 feet in lenght.

      So called, because it is usually only seen when it rises to the surface in search of food.

      .

    65. ajacksonian Says:

      Insurgency may be too directed a word, perhaps.

      If we examine our inalienable rights and how we apply them, then part of the change in application comes through the means and methods we have to apply them. In many ways this is the Dawn of a New Era as an older, far more structured one is dissolved by the new means of expressing personal liberty and freedom. This new era is completely based upon all our Natural liberties and necessity to self-govern, but are now leveraged by scaled capability that has not been present in the world even in modern times. Only in the very late modern times have the means and methods to utilize our age old liberties in new pathways that require less structure and formality come about: thus the emergent behavior is not an ‘insurgency’ but an adaptation to the new system we are creating that is replacing, in place, the older one.

      If that is the case, any attempt to centralize and concentrate power away from the individual, save for those things that require the common consent of the governed under the Law of Nations, is seen as reactionary and retrograde. We no longer put up with high degrees of centralization and intermediation for how we live, which is a far cry from how we approached things just 15 years ago. As our abilities to understand how this change in our life flows from our modern means, we adapt by processing information faster than any institution can. A free-form, loose knit organization of consenting adults contributing to a common goal becomes vastly more powerful, more quickly, than the previous age’s establishments.

      This is not a radical notion and has been presented as an underlying basis for change in society at least as far back as James Burke and later Ray Kurzweil. When we understand the foundations of the scaled part of our life, the scale free portion we exercise gains vast and new flexibility by utilizing powers that were not available to us just a mere 15 years ago. This is the basis of what the founders put down using the best ideas and ideals that had arisen in Western Christian culture before their time. We just stopped centralizing… soon our government must stop doing so, also.

    66. J. Scott Says:

      Madhu, I like your inclination towards an “open source”-like label. We talked about this post at dinner tonight and and I’ve sort of talked myself into the notion that what we’re seeing is the emergence of adults on a national scale. The baby boomers are more like perpetual adolescents, ill-behaved, me-too creatures of emotion first, how to pay for it later. Adults understand the mortgage has to be paid, but more importantly that nothing is free—a reality lost on your garden variety boomer.

      Reagan laid the ground work by challenging the legitimacy of the leftist progressive, so-called, model and articulating a different path—a more typical American path. Newt & Co. picked up the torch and carried the ideas, but didn’t deliver. Adults in markets (remember Rick Santini (hope that’s his name at CNBC who started the tea party concept), media, and blogosphere have done and are doing what we do here—open source ideating, for lack of a better phrase.

      LG, This movement is both deep and wide, just hope those elected to act our behalf remember why they went to the dance when the music starts.

    67. Lexington Green Says:

      Rick Santelli.

    68. Keith Says:

      Lexington Green, I pretty much agree with you in your sense that something is afoot. I am certainly willing to wait this election out to see what comes of it. However, we’ve been at this for, well . . . since the liberals decided to lose their minds. And I’m really not even sure if it is possible for the left and right to come together when our minds are constructed so differently.

      You know, lately we’ve found that the human brain has continued its development at least until several thousand years ago. Certain people have a newer version of genetic codes that they know results in larger brain size. They don’t yet know if this means smarter or dumber, but we know that the difference shows–overtly at least. Maybe the left-right divide is an offspring of this. My (albeit prejudiced) take is that the new genetic code allows certain people to truely understand objectivity and maybe even see the world and all its connections better. ie. the big picture. And all this leads to different values based on capacity to see and understand.

      Come on, you’ve been there, talked the talk, given it your all, and for what? You’ll never convince a liberal to come around because we value different things. We judge by the lessons we learned from 2500 years of western civilization. We understand the enlightenment, the scientific method, rationalism, and reason. And we value freedom above all. They value their mommies. And, I suppose they value the nobel savage, the power of words (as wielded by their own brand of snake-kissing, hillbilly ministers), the innocence of the child, and–of course–equality of material welfare. They are unable to get beyond the childhood expressions of emotions, envy and mysticism–if I believe it, it exists!

      And, yes, I am reading a blog but hoping for signs that maybe we are ready to free ourselves. I think the enlightenment came when enough smart, modern-coded people got control of the body politic and those who couldn’t grasp the concepts payed lip-service to it up until now. The 20th century started the new anti-reformation against those things the “old-coded” didn’t understand but attributed to every bad day from the sinking of the Titanic to the two world wars and beyond. The “old codes” aren’t dumb, in fact the are perfectly able to process information at least as fast as the “new codes.” But trying to get them to see the light is not unlike trying to teach a monkey that which their brains are not designed to process. We could be at this a MIGHTY long time.

      Our decisions today might just mean that there is a place in the world where 2500 years of western civilization is free to grow. Its sure not going to happen in Europe anymore, as they slouch toward civilizational suicide. America is its last chance.

      Its time we start thinking about guarding the last flame. Trying today to convince those fickled “undecided” Americans (who are probably undecided because they really don’t care) that one way is better than another in order to win the next election, is simply folly. We’ll all be slapping each other on the back that we’ve convinced America when all we’ve done is become the fickled’s flavor of the week. Playing this game year after year has become nothing more than pushing lint around in your navel.

      So if it happens that the flame is kept in a monastery in one half of America, so be it.

    69. foxmarks Says:

      The term “insurgency” has already been charged with meaning. A big chunk of people thought/think it was rhetoric used to avoid calling the Iraq situation a civil war. You’re pushing uphill and against your own declared sensitivities.

      I find it odd that I am accused of advocating violence. I’m commenting on the situation as I see it, with violence already happening. And commenting on the apparent character of those about to have their power reduced by election. Didn’t y’all see the eco-greenie video with the non-believers being exploded?

      Having listened to Progressive radio for a few weeks, and my lifetime of living amidst many raging urban lefties, I genuinely believe their frustrations will have physical manifestations. Not by millions, but it took only 19 men to bring down the WTC and our old way of life. Perhaps then, that will be an insurgency that fits with the Iraq-colored definition. If Progress cannot be achieved by the ballot, the prog history is rife with alternative examples.

      I have less than zero expectation that the current President would show any restraint in attacking Americans. He’s already set the groundwork with Awlaki.

      If anything, I am advocating preparedness, not violence. Yes, I know every wackjob says that. That’s why I play here, there, and everywhere, so I do not get lost in my own viewpoint. I would love to believe there is a different and better scenario more likely. But that’s not where the evidence and experience has led me so far.

      Lex, I was trying to respect your disdain for the term “war”. My first comment was more philosophical and an attempt at trying to understand your concept of The Insurgency. I still don’t get it. You confound me with all your war metaphors, too. Sometimes what quacks is a duck.

      And to your snark, I do have my own blog. Nobody reads it, and I’ve been fine with that.

    70. Lexington Green Says:

      Keith, Churchill said the Americans always make the right decision, but only after they have tried everything else.

      We are not going to have to retreat to the monasteries.

      I think we are going to hit an ugly rough patch, then we are going to be way ahead of where we have ever been before, founded on the deep roots of our culture, which keep reasserting themselves.

      Also, the big problem is not so much the liberals, but the regulatory state, the Leviathan, and the people who benefit from it, many of whom have no ideology at all.

      The Insurgency v. The Combine.

    71. foxmarks Says:

      baby boomers are more like perpetual adolescents, ill-behaved, me-too creatures of emotion first

      Exactly. That I why I am wary of their rage. They’re too old to grow up, so I expect more acting out against the parents/adults/Tea Partiers.

    72. Vejadu Says:

      The insurgency must at some point in it’s evolution develop a goal. As an intermediate step to that end, I suggest that taking inspiration from the French (yes the French!) may be appropriate. I believe they are on their Fifth Republic now. America 2.0 might be a consideration. Hitting the reset button fiscally – e.g. – repudiating the debt of the prior entity – would unleash a maelstrom that could have many deliberately favorable consequences to American citizens. First – as a debt free enterprise, America would suddenly be able to lower taxes to cover current spending/rainy days and not pay for errors of the past. Second – while both overseas allies and non- would be stuck holding worthless paper, they would undoubtedly queue up to purchase new bonds – in a huge unleveraged machine. None of them would resort to violence to recoup their losses. Third – the citizens holding paper of the former entity might be consoled by knowing that their individual liabilities were eliminated. None of the current infrastructure would be eliminated by this – only the debt on it. Call it a jubilee year! Given stable (if novel) finances, one huge underpinning of a future political system is in place.

    73. Lexington Green Says:

      Vejadu, that is very maximalist thinking.

      We may see something like that happen.

      We are actually heading into America 3.0.

      But I will save the details for another venue.

    74. Lexington Green Says:

      Foxmarks, I was not being snarky.

      As you will note, other people said that I misread you, and I left up your comment, mine, and theirs.

      The whole string is here and people can decide for themselves what to think about it.

    75. J. Scott Says:

      LG,

      Like you, I don’t watch television, so thanks for the clarification. I could have googled, but was on a roll with a book interrupted by commenting here. Many thanks!

    76. Lexington Green Says:

      Rick Santelli’s rant will be remembered in 100 years.

      I won’t be here, but that’s my prediction.

    77. Mere Citizen Says:

      Vejadu, I would say the French are the last people next to the Chinese for us to imitate. The reality is that France is on it’s Fifth or so Republic because they never truly outgrew the absolutism of the Sun King and the peoples need to have a paternalist government in which daddy government took care of his children. Realize that both left and right sided socialism grew out of the French Revolution, one became Fascism or in it’s lite form American Progressivism, the other grew Marxism and all the associated Communisms. Progressivism took over completely in this country with the Admin of Woodrow Wilson, in it’s time they were considered the left, in the 60’s the New Left took over. The New Left was of the Marxist side, the previous Progressives of the right, but both still a form of socialism. I believe it was the in the 1930s Norman Thomas, the perennial socialist candidate for President, debated the head of the American Communist Party in Madison Square Garden, pressing that Socialism was not the same as Communism, and why it was better. I have a copy of the debate. Makes for some fascinating reading if you are interested in that type of thing as I am.

      In terms of conservatives that have any resemblance to the founders, that has not happened in over a hundred years. Certainly not either Bush I or I, and God Almighty Nixon should never be considered a conservative. Reagan was perhaps the closest we’ve gotten in that time frame. All we have gotten is some form of Socialism, either the Progressive or the Marxist version.

      By Woodrow Wilson in Socialism and Democracy Roundly described, socialism is a proposition that every community, by means of whatever forms of organization may be most effective for the purpose, see to it for itself that each one of its members finds the employment for which he is best suited and is rewarded according to his diligence and merit, all proper surroundings of moral influence being secured to him by the public authority. ‘State socialism’ is willing to act though state authority as it is at present organized. It proposes that all idea of a limitation of public authority by individual rights be put out of view, and that the State consider itself bound to stop only at what is unwise or futile in its universal superintendence alike of individual and of public interests. The thesis of the states socialist is, that no line can be drawn between private and public affairs which the State may not cross at will; that omnipotence of legislation is the first postulate of all just political theory.

      Applied in a democratic state, such doctrine sounds radical, but not revolutionary. It is only an acceptance of the extremest logical conclusions deducible from democratic principles long ago received as respectable. For it is very clear that in fundamental theory socialism and democracy are almost if not quite one and the same. They both rest at bottom upon the absolute right of the community to determine its own destiny and that of its members. Men as communities are supreme over men as individuals. Limits of wisdom and convenience to the public control there may be: limits of principle there are, upon strict analysis, none.

      It is of capital importance to note this substantial correspondence of fundamental conception as between socialism and democracy: a whole system of practical politics may be erected upon it without further foundation. The germinal conceptions of democracy are as free from all thought of a limitation of the public authority as are the corresponding conceptions of socialism; the individual rights which the democracy of our own century has actually observed, were suggested to it by a political Philosophy radically individualistic, but not necessarily democratic. Democracy is bound by no principle of its own nature to say itself nay as to the exercise of any power. Here, then, lies the point. The difference between democracy and socialism is not an essential difference, but only a practical difference — is a difference of organization and policy, not a difference of primary motive.

      There is more but you get the gist, look up the rest if you are interested. One can imagine without too much difficulty any brand of socialist today making the same argument. They’d be wrong but they’ve been driving this philosopy down our throats a long time, and a large number of people are getting tired of being choked.

      The country is just starting to wake up, it’s an insurgency indeed. Why? Because this is a cold civil war and a cold insurgency is exactly what will happen. With the ability to get around the self appointed elites through the internet it is an insurgency that will grow as people are able to educate themselves to reality instead of a presented reality that we have been given through news sources, historians and entertainment. It took a long time to get us where we are, it’s going to take a long time and much dedication to turn this ship around. I however, do not doubt it will occur. We are just getting started. Finally.

    78. Lexington Green Says:

      Mere Citizen: Bravo.

    79. Urutu Says:

      Was going to comment but then read your Comment Policy(ies) and … why bother? Moving on as encouraged.

    80. Dedicated_Dad Says:

      “Mr. Green”

      I mean no disrespect whatsoever – on the contrary it is a sign of my respect that I am willing to act as I believe a true friend must — they tell us what we NEED to hear as opposed to what we’d WANT to hear.

      I must note in passing that I find it fascinating that you picked such a moniker but instinctively recoil from any mention of anything resembling what happened there.

      You DO realize that our founders didn’t put flowers in the muzzles of the redcoats’ rifles while singing kumbaya, right?

      Given your reaction to “Foxmarks” obvious statement of what he sees (as opposed to DESIRES) I fully expect that you’ll REALLY hate what I’m about to say.

      I ask only that you read carefully, and take note of the fact that like him I am not advocating for violence, but rather putting together all visible evidence, and apply some hard-won knowledge of human nature and history to construct a picture of what I DREAD, but believe is coming.

      “Had the Japanese got as far as India, Gandhi’s theories of ‘passive resistance’ would have floated down the Ganges River with his bayoneted, beheaded carcass.” — Mike Vanderboegh

      Today, we face no less evil an enemy than the Imperial Japanese. Though surrounding themselves with platitudes of “peace and love” and “one nation, working together” our domestic enemies simultaneously and enthusiastically treat with our foreign ones – and laugh gleefully over videos of children being graphically, grotesquely, violently murdered because they don’t hearken immediately to their way of thinking.

      This enemy has – as has been noted above – openly advocated the killing of all who won’t fall in (their) line, and routinely discuss reeducation camps and mass-murder in the same tones as they do what to wear to the next protest. They are so inured to violence – in support of their agenda – that they were shocked — SHOCKED I TELL YOU!!! — when people recoiled in horror at their “funny…light-hearted” little “joke” “10-10” video.

      Politically, we don’t have a two-party system – we have ONE party (“The Government Party”) with two branches. Two branches, in public at least…

      In an ongoing bit of theatrical production – much akin to “pro wrestling” – they publicly posture and threaten each other, while privately associating as friends working toward the exact same goal: the fleecing of the poor rubes who think their performances are real.

      Dubya – from the allegedly “conservative” branch – did more to expand government than any one POTUS in many decades (if ever) prior. Worse, he oversaw the biggest curtailing of civil liberties in the history of our Republic.

      Fed up with this abomination, tired of two apparently never-ending wars (and whipped into a frenzy by the Propaganda Ministry (aka “media”) The People then elected as his successor an exponentially larger abomination. This thing – though billing himself as the “hope and change” candidate, and making innumerable lofty, empty promises – not only continued the most objectionable policies of his predecessor but topped them with an overt takeover of the economy and open calls for reporting dissenters to the Government.

      I’m as yet undecided as to whether this was an accidental overreach born of ignorant enthusiasm, or a deliberate maneuver to lead dissenters to rise so they could be easily identified — time will tell — but in either case it led to a mass uprising among the aforementioned rubes.

      At the first sign of real fire among the people, here comes the other branch of The Government Party — ready and willing to throw off their mantle of statism and remold itself into the image of the uprisen.

      After all (we’re constantly told) a third-party simply cannot succeed – in order to accomplish anything we must reform this branch of The Government Party, otherwise all our effort will come to naught. Naturally, those who really control this pseudo-party – the unelected national and regional power-structure hidden within – won’t change at all.

      Meanwhile, the entire world economy is falling to pieces around us, ours managing only through sheer size and inertia to avoid being the first to fall.

      But fall it must!

      See, what The Government Party is really about is the utter destruction of our Republic. Nationalism simply cannot be allowed to exist in this “New World” that our Masters are building for us.

      They’ve already ensured that we can never repeat our previous feats of economic warfare – the real reason for our “victory” in past world-wars. It was necessary to their agenda to decimate this economic might, and to separate it from the spirit of America.

      As our factories and whole industries moved out, they didn’t go to some other nationalistic, western country — they went to China, where the people have no history of Liberty or market Capitalism. These people have always been told what to do, and are accustomed to bowing to the whim of their own Leviathan.

      They literally have no concept – culturally speaking – of the sort of Nationalism that led our Parents and Grandparents to amazing feats of accomplishment — ergo they can be trusted with the sort of economic and manufacturing might that once belonged to us.

      Viewed through the lens of knowledge of the ultimate goal, all these disparate events suddenly become clear.

      Why will our Government not secure our borders? How can they ignore the unquestionable danger — especially since the openness has unquestionably allowed terrorists to walk right in?

      How – in the face of these facts – can those charged with “homeland security” instead focus on denigrating and threatening those who would support a third-party candidate, or put a Gadsden-flag bumper-sticker on their vehicle?

      Simple: Terrorists ultimately serve the goals of our Masters, while Patriots oppose them! Each act of “terrorism” increases fear among the rubes, which allows still further abrogation of our rights in the name of “National Security.”

      “Take whatever you want — just PLEASE DON’T LET THEM HURT US!!!”

      Further, they have for generations fostered dependence on Government – to the point that millions of our people live their entire lives in Govt. housing, living on the Govt dole. They’ve no family history of self-reliance, after all Grandma did, Mom did, and now daughter too is raising her kids in the only economic “system” they’ve ever known.

      So utter and complete is their helplessness, that (as Katrina showed us) they can’t even find the gumption necessary to move out of the way of danger, instead sitting in their hovels until the storm flooded and killed them. As they climbed the steps to escape the flood, they gave no thought to how they’d escape their attic — after all, someone would be along, right?

      Further, those who survived the flood then continued to sit, shrieking for Big Daddy Government to “DO SOMETHING!! HELP US!!!” — while never lifting a finger to help themselves.

      I do not despise these poor people – I pity them. They are utterly helpless, and the thought of self-reliance just doesn’t exist for them. In the name of kindness, we’ve done them the greatest evil: We’ve rendered them not only helpless, but DRIVEless as well.

      Given the breakdown in law and order, rather than band together to stop the worst of the offenses, they instead watched and listened as women and children were raped in the darkness around them — and if they got off the proverbial couch at all, it was to go grab some “free” clothes, shoes, beer, or a big-screen — not food, water or supplies.

      Leviathan has made its power so universal, we no longer question its right to take whatever it wants from us, instead celebrating whenever it deigns to give a little bit back.

      Today, something approaching 60% of us either pay no taxes at all – ever – or pay so little that when the “freebies” are tacked on they receive more than they paid.

      ANY mention of cutting spending threatens their rice-bowl, so they’ll turn up en-masse to support their most promising new sugar-daddy.

      Further, people talk about cutting “entitlement” programs and fear old folks getting angry about losing their prescription coverage while somehow not seeing the obvious danger that’s all around them.

      We saw what happened to NOLa post-Katrina — now imagine that scenario writ large in every city across our land. This is what will happen – almost immediately – if anything were to interrupt the supply of free food and cash to our urban populus. Add in the roughly 40,000 gang members in an average city — utterly sociopathic murderers who will have their own designs in such a scenario — and you’ve got a prescription for horror almost unimaginable.

      Almost.

      Further, we are a nation more divided than at any time in our history. In the mid 19th century, we were divided pretty much along a clear geographical line. Folks in one part had a certain way of doing things, folks in the other had theirs. The split was actually logical, when it occurred.

      Spend a disquieting hour over at HuffPo, or DU, and really READ the comments. Better yet, scan the comments on any remotely political video on youtube. In the latter example you’ll need to ignore the moronic gruntings of the younger set – but pay attention to the rest.

      How can these two groups of people *EVER* hope to live in the same land?

      Ultimately, our nation is divided into two camps: One camp desires only to live according to the Supreme law of our land – our Constitution – and to be left alone to sink or swim as their efforts and fates may allow.

      The other desires nothing less than to remake our Republic in the image of some utopian neo-socialist paradise, where all will magically prosper at an equal level.

      The latter camp hates everyone and everything that has ever led to any actual prosperity — but that’s beside the point.

      They are truly, wholly, fanatically TRUE BELIEVERS, and they react with violent, vitriolic, personal attacks to any attempt to question their Faith.

      Taken as a whole, and considering the intricacies of these issues far too complex for an already too long comment, there is simply no way we get from here to anywhere without violence.

      Again — I’m not advocating for it. I pray almost without ceasing – countless times per day – “God help us – and God Save Our Republic!” I work – I work to educate others on Constitutional principles. I support with my time, my effort, my labor and my money NUMEROUS people and groups working toward a return to Constitutional Government – and any political candidate who seems to sincerely desire the same.

      I do this because – when the lid finally comes off – I want to be able to look my children in the eye and tell them I did all within my power to keep this from happening.

      Still, I do it all with my eyes wide open, knowing all the while that I’m probably delaying the inevitable. I ALSO do it – as was taught in the Holy Bible – with the proverbial trowel in one hand and the proverbial sword in the other.

      What I mean by this is that I’m also endeavoring to do whatever I can to prepare for what is coming. Some food, medicines, weapons and ammo, and most of all SKILLS to help us survive the crisis and rebuild our society in the aftermath.

      For thousands of years, the wisest advice has been “Si vis pacem, para bellum.”

      This does not mean I desire violence, any more than having extinguishers and plans means I desire a house-fire. On the contrary – I take common-sense steps to minimize our risk of fire, while simultaneously doing my best to ensure we’ll survive should it happen.

      It’s time we wake up, and face the evil that is heading our way. Our future – barring Divine intervention – is very likely to be ugly and violent, and pretending otherwise does nothing but help line us up to be victims.

      Respectfully,

      DD

    81. Desiderius Says:

      “Also, the big problem is not so much the liberals, but the regulatory state, the Leviathan, and the people who benefit from it, many of whom have no ideology at all.”

      Indeed. We will ultimately need the (real) liberals if the insurgency is to produce anything worth having, as the Enlightenment needed the Humanists still within the (counter-reformed) church.

    82. Lexington Green Says:

      “I ask only that you read carefully.”

      With all due respect, then write more briefly, please. Epic length comments are parasitic. Put it on your blog, and put a link and a few of your best lines here, and let people decide if they want to over there and read it. No problem this time, but avoid it in the future, please.

      Short response: We have a political process, a legal process and a Constitution. The American founders, including the men of April 19, 1775, tried very, very hard to reach a peaceful resolution with their King and his government. Benjamin Franklin was a very reluctant revolutionist. The Americans of 1775-76 lacked the means we have, to make peaceful change, so the analogy is not there. Sam Adams himself said once you have a democracy and can govern yourself, revolution is inexcusable.

      We will reform ourselves via peaceful means.

      A lot of people get into a sort of “apocalypse porn” about how everything is going to blow up, and there will be reckoning, and they seem to like the idea that the boring stuff they have to deal with as ordinary suburban Americans will give way to exciting and destructive events. It is 99% talk, and pointless and counterproductive talk at that.

      Things are bad. They were worse by far in 1930. Very hard times, much worse than now, but we processed it through the political and legal system. I see no reason to think we won’t do the same thing again.

      We inherited a remarkably resilient and flexible system.

      Making it work is the goal. Or, it’s mine.

      Others may differ.

    83. J. Scott Says:

      LG: Well said. Nuf said.

    84. foxmarks Says:

      Lex, one the things you appear to lack is a framework or structure by which these irreconcilable factions will reconcile. To wave your hand at the Constitution is not an argument. Similarly, to paint those who see ugliness on the horizon with some glib ad hominem about porn is no argument.

      You have invested yourself heavily in a idea using the terms of war. You admit you’re not sure what will happen, but you seem certain that everything will be fine in the end.

      Lay it out then. What are those peaceful means? Sketch out a scenario that avoids what you abhor. If you truly want a better outcome, if using the system as we find it today is your goal, then show us how.

      Just telling us everything will be alright—and that it was worse long ago—is insufficient.

      You have a blog that people read. Put it to work.

    85. Brad E. Says:

      LG, I don’t disagree with much in your Right Network articles save your optimism that significant positive change can somehow happen much less be sustained. You identified quite clearly a very strong reason that such change is unlikely and why, in the unlikely ever it occurs, it will not be permanent: the incremental cost to each taxpayer of each new benefit, rule or regulation is very small while benefits accruing to the favored parties are significant. Thus there exists an irreversible inertia in any popularly elected government for politicians to promise and do ever-more and an unchangeable dynamic that will always incentivize benefit seekers much more strongly than those who seek to restrain the growth of government. To sustain positive change, to convince everyone to accept an equal haircut, one must reverse those facts and retain the reversal over decades an eventuality that is, sadly, almost certainly no longer possible here.

      We’d likely agree that the size of government is the central problem. But how large should the federal government be? Through much of the 19th Century it spent less than 2% of GDP and had little regulatory impact. Today it spends what, nearly a quarter of GDP, and its regulatory cost is perhaps another tenth? Thus, as a baseline, we’ve accumulated 17 to 18 times the amount of federal government the Founders intended or saw as healthy based on their own actions in running the nation. I’d be interested in your thoughts on the scope of what positive change would look like and I’ll suggest that anything less than an absolutely neutered and toothless federal government would quickly erase any positive change that might occur as new administrations simply redo, to great praise and popular support, what has been undone. Such instability might well be worse than the slow fade we’ve been executing for a century now.

      Your suggestions to the insurgency are fine tactical considerations for infiltrating and gaining power within the present system, a prerequisite to any peaceful change to be certain. But to what end? “Smaller government” is too nebulous a definition for victory, something without which no insurgency will succeed.

    86. Lexington Green Says:

      “Lay it out then.”

      I will lay it out in another venue, not in a comment section under cross examination.

      I have some ideas about how this will play out.

      They are book length.

      I will give everybody a lot more to chew on.

      But not on the fly, here.

      Getting it all in a form worth reading, while also trying to make a living, is a challenge.

      Stand by.

    87. mlyster Says:

      Wow. What a stimulating string. I’ll keep it short.
      I expect the left to lie and cheat; they have, they do, and they will.
      We need however, at all costs to constitutionally ‘color within the lines’. To violate this is to defeat the purpose of a constitutional, representationally governed society.
      LG, you’re right: It’s all fun and games to indulge in ‘apocalypse porn’, but it doesn’t advance the discussion, really.
      The rule of law is what maintains the surprisingly thin separation between society and anarchy. One can have America, or one can have Haiti. Or Somalia.
      We have as an electorate the opportunity to send our government a potent message in not-quite a month. Republicans have one more chance to prove that they finally get it. Their protests that conservatives ‘cannot win’ have been, and remain, self-serving. Once they DO win: we need to see them incorporated intellectually into the Republican governing process. If not: they will lose the grudging support they’ve gained through the Tea Party and conservative supporters that have thrown their lot in with the GOP as the lesser evil.
      That’s my two cents’ worth—all you intellectuals, continue to have at it. It’s refreshing and educational for the rest of us (really). Thanks.

    88. GettingReal Says:

      We were fooled by the contract with America and I have read this new contract they have written which is even more vague and unproductive. I think as long as vague and unproductive is considered the only acceptable form of public communication we will remain vague and unproductive. The framers of the Constitution openly said it would never work apart from God. That is the underlying issue that must be addressed or we as a nation will continue to pretend the constitution itself is able to prevent people from corruption. The big O has demonstrated openly that he is able to pervert the constitution to accomplish his own will with it. The real question is — will Americans be willing to come to repentance to the acknowledging of the truth that they may recover themselves from the snare of the lying devils who have taken them captive at their will?

      Liars come to steal, to kill and to destroy. Right now, liars rule the airwaves. Without repentance, there is no remission of sin. (As in remission of cancer causes the cancer to cease to operate for a time until conditions return to the place where it can once again overtake the body.)

    89. Lexington Green Says:

      This discussion has helped me see that the process of winding up the existing regime is under-theorized. Thanks to DD and Foxmarks for pushing me on this point.

      This article, The Coming of the Fourth American Republic, takes some steps toward a discussion of this process, but mostly notes that no one knows how it would work.

      Thinking caps on, team.

      Suggestions welcome for the (peaceful, orderly, lawful) dismantling of the current Leviathan.

    90. Cromagnum Says:

      Suggestions welcome for the (peaceful, orderly, lawful) dismantling of the current Leviathan.

      Can we turn Cloward-Piven on its head? Can we force the government to fail the liberal policies? This would need more thinking.

      I think the best chance to dismantle is the potential supermajority coming (see American Thinker July 2010). Never let a Good Victory go to waste. Using that, pass 5 Constitutional Ammendments that destroy/deflate the power base of communism and progressive socialism (I almost repeat myself)

      These 5 Ammendments should be sweeping and brief. They should each capture and destroy several key belief, by attacking and eviscerating the root.

      For one example, you could attack Illegal Immigration, Abortion, and NaturalBornCitizen by simply defining person and citizen. Something like that to consolidate and destroy the principles of the internal enemies of the Constitution.

      Then take some of the lists floating out there that the Weather underground, Fabians, CPUSA etc have made and undermine the premises.