"It will be of little avail to the people, that the laws are made by men of their own choice, if the laws be so voluminous that they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be understood; if they be repealed or revised before they are promulgated, or undergo such incessant changes that no man, who knows what the law is to-day, can guess what it will be to-morrow." — James Madison, Federal No. 62, 1788
Classical liberalism (also called laissez-faire liberalism) is a term used to describe the following:
1) The philosophy developed by early liberals from the Enlightenment until John Stuart Mill
2) The philosophy developed by early liberals from the Age of Enlightenment until John Stuart Mill and revived in the 20th century by Friedrich Hayek and Milton Friedman. The contemporary restatement of classical liberalism is sometimes called "new liberalism" or "neo-liberalism"
Classical liberalism is a political philosophy that supports individual rights as pre-existing the state, a government that exists to protect those moral rights, ensured by a constitution that protects individual autonomy from other individuals and governmental power, private property, and a laissez-faire economic policy. The "normative core" of classical liberalism is the idea that in an environment of laissez-faire, a spontaneous order of cooperation in exchanging goods and services emerges that satisfies human wants.
Classical liberalism is a philosophy committed to the ideal of limited government and liberty of individuals including freedom of religion, speech, press, assembly, and free markets. This is the basis for our Declaration of Independence and our Constitution. It can be said with confidence that our Founders were Classical Liberals and the Tories, loyal to King George were the Conservatives. Today these terms have been reversed by our media and education system.
Classical liberalism is a political philosophy and ideology belonging to liberalism in which primary emphasis is placed on securing the freedom of the individual by limiting the power of the government. The philosophy emerged as a response to the Industrial Revolution and urbanization in the 19th century in Europe and the United States. It advocates civil liberties with a limited government under the rule of law, private property rights, and belief in laissez-faire economic liberalism. Classical liberalism is built on ideas that had already arisen by the end of the 18th century, including ideas of Adam Smith, John Locke, Jean-Baptiste Say, Thomas Malthus, and David Ricardo. It drew on a psychological understanding of individual liberty, natural law, utilitarianism, and a belief in progress.
In the early 20th century, liberals split on several issues, and in the United States in particular, a distinction grew up between classical liberals and social liberals.
There was a revival of interest in classical liberalism in the twentieth century led by Friedrich Hayek and Milton Friedman.
In the late 19th century, classical liberalism developed into neo-classical liberalism, which argued for government to be as small as possible in order to allow the exercise of individual freedom. In its most extreme form, it advocated Social Darwinism. Libertarianism is a modern form of neo-classical liberalism.
The term classical liberalism was applied in retrospect to distinguish earlier 19th-century liberalism from the newer social liberalism. The phrase classical liberalism is also sometimes used to refer to all forms of liberalism before the 20th century, and some conservatives and libertarians use the term classical liberalism to describe their belief in the primacy of individual freedom and minimal government. It is not always clear which meaning is intended.
The term "liberal" changed meaning in the 1890s. Men like Theodore Roosevelt, John Dewey, Woodrow Wilson, Herbert Hoover, and Franklin Roosevelt changed the meaning previous meaning of “Liberal” to include bigger and more intrusive central government. They called there political philosophy and programs “Progressive.” They believed “progress” meant more government programs at the cost of increasing the tax burdens on those that had been successful. This change began at John Hopkins and Princeton Universities in the 1890s with the influence of Frank Goodnow and John Dewey. For a further discussion of this change see my blogs: The Progressive Rejection of the Founding, Voting Obama Out of Office is not Enough, and The Rise of the Progressive Mind.
Since then Classical Liberals are called "Conservatives" or "Libertarians" in the United States; in the rest of the world, especially Europe and Japan, classical liberals are still called liberals.
This progressive philosophy was not common to one political party. There were Democrats like Grover Cleveland and Republicans like Calvin Coolidge who would be called Classical Liberals (or in today’s lexicon Conservatives or Libertarians). On the other hand there were Democrats such as Woodrow Wilson (the father of the administrative state), Franklin Roosevelt (who believed in the Second Bill of Rights where government was to provide new rights for citizens through redistribution of wealth and property) and Lyndon Johnson (the father of the Great Society). Republicans also fell into this category. Men such as Theodore Roosevelt (who called himself a Progressive), Herbert Hoover, and George W. Bush. Remember that Hillary Clinton is a self-proclaimed dyed-in-the wool Progressive.
So what do we call those who believe in the traditional Classical Liberalism and those who subscribe to the philosophy of Progressivism and the administrative state today?
To help you understand the mind of the Progressive, called Liberal today here are a few metrics to assist you in making that determination:
1) Liberalism is college professors and documentary filmmakers accumulating vast fortunes in a capitalistic system by decrying the evils of capitalism.
2) Liberalism is claiming that the "border is secure" while saying we shouldn't deport anyone who illegally crosses the border.
3) Liberalism is "environmental activists" flying across the world to ride together in SUVs to posh environmental conferences where they call for everyone else to live like cavemen in order to save the planet.
4) Liberalism is spewing hatred and profanity at conservative women, calling for gun control that leaves women defenseless against rapists and murderers, and celebrating misogynistic pigs like Bill Clinton while accusing other people of being engaged in a "war on women."
5) Liberalism is people who say that asking for voter ID is racist while claiming that black Americans are too uniquely stupid and lazy to get an ID.
6) Liberalism is forcibly taking money they believe you don't deserve from the people who earned it and calling them greedy for not wanting to give even more. This is called redistribution of wealth.
7) Liberalism is saying that the government should confiscate guns from NRA members and kill them if they resist and then claiming that you have no idea why they think that they need guns to defend themselves.
8) Liberalism is people who sneer at displays of the American flag, tell the world America isn't exceptional, and criticize the country non-stop while getting offended if their patriotism is questioned.
9) Liberalism is calling for higher taxes while you cheat on your own taxes.
10) Liberalism is bitter, race-obsessed people who see everything in racial terms, accusing other people of being racists.
11) Liberalism is saying you're for "choice" because you support abortion while opposing giving Americans choices about their health care, schools, whether they want to bake cakes for gay weddings, or even the light bulbs they have in their house.
12) Liberalism is calling everyone who disagrees with you a racist, bigoted, homophobic Nazi and then calling other people hateful.
13) Liberalism is considering yourself compassionate for wanting to forcibly confiscate other people's money to give away to constituent groups you hope will vote for you in exchange for the loot.
14) Liberalism is saying George W. Bush is a monkey who started the war in Iraq to "steal their oil" while becoming furious if anyone criticizes Obama.
15) Liberalism is pretending that Christians are dangerous while radical Islamists chanting "Death to America" and advocating Sharia law are harmless little lambs.
16) Liberalism is calling for guns to be taken away from Americans while you're protected by armed guards.
17) Liberalism is millionaires who have more money than they could spend in a lifetime railing against the horrors of "income inequality."
18) Liberalism is "animal rights activists" who eat meat and wear leather shoes screaming profanity at women who hunt.
19) Liberalism is black pundits who got their jobs solely because they're black and willing to call other people racists going on TV and claiming that white gas station attendants and fast food workers are benefitting from "privilege" because of their race.
20) Liberalism is thinking of yourself as an independent, open-minded free thinker for mindlessly parroting whatever the Democrat Party line is on every issue.
21) Liberalism is the belief in the administrative state and that government is the source of your rights.
22. Liberalism is where when they lose at the ballot box they find sympathetic, like-minded judges to overturn the will of the people.
So with this in mind we have to be careful how we define ourselves if we subscribe to the philosophy of the Classical Liberals of the 18th and 19th centuries. I like to use the term Constitutional Conservative. This means I believe in and accept the words of our Declaration of Independence and Constitution as written by our Founders. This could be called a “Strict Constructionist.” As for those liberals defined above I like to use the term “progressive-liberal” or just plain liberal. This means I deem them as progressing away from the philosophy of the classical liberalism of our Founders.
Years from now, historians may regard the 2008 election of Barack Obama as an inscrutable and disturbing phenomenon, the result of a baffling breed of mass hysteria akin perhaps to the witch craze of the Middle Ages. How, they will wonder, did a man so devoid of professional accomplishment beguile so many into thinking he could manage the world's largest economy, direct the world's most powerful military, execute the world's most consequential job?
Imagine a future historian examining Obama's pre-presidential life: ushered into and through the Ivy League, despite unremarkable grades and test scores along the way; a cushy non-job as a "community organizer;" a brief career as a state legislator devoid of legislative achievement (and in fact nearly devoid of his attention, often he voted "present"); and finally an unaccomplished single term in the United States Senate, the entirety of which was devoted to his presidential ambitions.
He left no academic legacy in academia, authored no signature legislation as a legislator. And then there is the matter of his troubling associations: the white-hating, America-loathing preacher who for decades served as Obama's "spiritual mentor;" a real-life, actual terrorist who served as Obama's colleague and political sponsor. It is easy to imagine a future historian looking at it all and asking: how on Earth was such a man elected president? There is no evidence that he ever attended or worked for any university or that he ever sat for the Illinois bar. We have no documentation for any of his claims. He may well be the greatest hoax in history.
Not content to wait for history, the incomparable Norman Podhoretz addressed the question recently in the Wall Street Journal: “To be sure, no white candidate who had close associations with an outspoken hater of America like Jeremiah Wright and an unrepentant terrorist like Bill Ayers would have lasted a single day”. But because Mr. Obama was black, and therefore entitled in the eyes of progressive-liberals to have hung out with protesters against various American injustices, even if they were 'a bit' extreme, he was given a pass. Let that sink in: Obama was given a pass - held to a lower standard because of the color of his skin.
Podhoretz continues: And in any case, what did such ancient history matter when he was also so articulate and elegant and (as he himself had said) "non-threatening," all of which gave him a fighting chance to become the first black president and thereby to lay the curse of racism to rest?”
Podhoretz puts his finger, I think, on the animating pulse of the Obama phenomenon — affirmative action. Not in the legal sense, of course. But certainly in the motivating sentiment behind all affirmative action laws and regulations, which are designed primarily to make white people, and especially white progressive-liberals, feel good about themselves.
Unfortunately, minorities often suffer so that whites can pat themselves on the back. Progressive-Liberals routinely admit minorities to schools for which they are not qualified, yet take no responsibility for the inevitable poor performance and high drop-out rates which follow. Progressive-Liberals don't care if these minority students fail; liberals aren't around to witness the emotional devastation and deflated self-esteem resulting from the racist policy that is affirmative action. Yes, racist. Holding someone to a separate standard merely because of the color of his skin — that's affirmative action in a nutshell, and if that isn't racism, then nothing is.
And that is what America did to Obama. True, Obama himself was never troubled by his lack of achievements, but why would he be? As many have noted, Obama was told he was good enough for Columbia despite undistinguished grades at Occidental; he was told he was good enough for the U.S. Senate despite a mediocre record in Illinois; he was told he was good enough to be president despite no record at all in the Senate. All his life, every step of the way, Obama was told he was good enough for the next step, in spite of ample evidence to the contrary.
What could this breed if not the sort of empty narcissism on display every time Obama speaks? In 2008, many who agreed that he lacked executive qualifications nonetheless raved about Obama's oratory skills, intellect, and cool character. Those people - conservatives included - ought now to be deeply embarrassed and ashamed.
The man thinks and speaks in the stalest of clichés, and that's when he has his teleprompters in front of him; when the prompter is absent he can barely think or speak at all. Not one original idea has ever issued from his mouth — it's all warmed-over Marxism of the kind that has failed over and over again for 100 years. (An example is his 2012 campaign speeches which are almost word for word his 2008 speeches)
The most recent example of his total incompetence is his dealing with the shoot down of ML-17 by Russian and Ukrainian separatists. In his public press conference 24 hours after the facts came in he was lack-luster in his words and demeanor which cold only mean he didn’t have the slightest idea of what to say or do. As a leader he fails. As an eternal campaigner and fund raiser he excels.
And what about his character? Obama is constantly blaming anything and everything else for his troubles. Bush did it; it was bad luck; I inherited this mess. Remember, he wanted the job, campaigned for the task. It is embarrassing to see a president so willing to advertise his own powerless-ness, so comfortable with his own incompetence. (The other day he actually came out and said no one could have done anything to get our economy and country back on track). But really, what were we to expect? The man has never been responsible for anything, so how do we expect him to act responsibly?
In my view Obama is neither a Progressive-Liberal nor a Constitutional Conservative. He is a hollow caricature filled with sound bites written by others who has been pampered and groomed by Liberal handlers and Chicago politicians who are the power behind the throne. His depth is no greater than a saucer half filled with water.
I received this email that I will share here. All of the so called coincidences have been verified many times in reputable blogs, articles, and books. Any one of these 'coincidences' when taken singularly appear to not mean much, but when taken as a whole, a computer would blow a main circuit if you asked it to calculate the odds that they have occurred by chance alone. Sit back, get a favorite beverage, and then read and ponder the Obama-related 'coincidences' ... then super-impose the bigger picture of most recent events i.e. Fast and furious, Benghazi, the IRS scandal and the NSA revelations ... then pray for our country.
“Obama just happened to know 60s far-left radical revolutionary William Ayers, whose father just happened to be Thomas Ayers, who just happened to be a close friend of Obama’s communist mentor Frank Marshall Davis, who just happened to work at the communist-sympathizing Chicago Defender with Vernon Jarrett, who just happened to later become the father-in-law of Iranian-born leftist Valerie Jarrett, who Obama just happened to choose as his closest White House advisor, and who just happened to have been CEO of Habitat Company, which just happened to manage public housing in Chicago, which just happened to get millions of dollars from the Illinois state legislature, and which just happened not to properly maintain the housing—which eventually just happened to require demolition.
Valerie Jarrett also just happened to work for the city of Chicago, and just happened to hire Michelle La Vaughan Robinson (later Mrs. Obama), who just happened to have worked at the Sidley Austin law firm, where former fugitive from the FBI Bernadine Dohrn also just happened to work, and where Barack Obama just happened to get a summer job.
Bernardine Dohrn just happened to be married to William Ayers, with whom she just happened to have hidden from the FBI at a San Francisco marina, along with Donald Warden, who just happened to change his name to Khalid al-Mansour, and Warden/al-Mansour just happened to be a mentor of Black Panther Party founders Huey Newton and Bobby Seale and a close associate of Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan, and al-Mansour just happened to be financial adviser to a Saudi Prince, who just happened to donate cash to Harvard, for which Obama just happened to get a critical letter of recommendation from Percy Sutton, who just happened to have been the attorney for Malcolm X, who just happened to know Kenyan politician Tom Mboya, who just happened to be a close friend of Barack Hussein Obama, Sr., who just happened to meet Malcolm X when he traveled to Kenya. Obama, Sr. just happened to have his education at the University of Hawaii paid for by the Laubach Literacy Institute, which just happened to have been supported by Elizabeth Mooney Kirk, who just happened to be a friend of Malcolm X, who just happened to have been associated with the Nation of Islam, which was later headed by Louis Farrakhan, who just happens to live very close to Obama’s Chicago mansion, which also just happens to be located very close to the residence of William Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn, who just happen to have been occasional baby-sitters for Malia and Natasha Obama, whose parents just happened to have no concern exposing their daughters to bomb-making communists.
After attending Occidental College and Columbia University, where he just happened to have foreign Muslim roommates, Obama moved to Chicago to work for the Industrial Areas Foundation, an organization that just happened to have been founded by Marxist and radical agitator Saul “the Red” Alinsky, author of Rules for Radicals, who just happened to be the topic of Hillary Rodham Clinton’s thesis at Wellesley College, and Obama’s $25,000 salary at IAF just happened to be funded by a grant from the Woods Fund, which was founded by the Woods family, whose Sahara Coal company just happened to provide coal to Commonwealth Edison, whose CEO just happened to be Thomas Ayers, whose son William Ayers just happened to serve on the board of the Woods Fund, along with Obama.
Obama also worked on voter registration drives in Chicago in the 1980s and just happened to work with leftist political groups like the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) and Socialist International (SI), through which Obama met Carl Davidson, who just happened to travel to Cuba during the Vietnam War to sabotage the U.S. war effort, and who just happened to be a former member of the SDS and a member of the Committees of Correspondence for Democracy and Socialism, which just happened to sponsor a 2002 anti-war rally at which Obama spoke, and which just happened to have been organized by Marilyn Katz, a former SDS activist and later public relations consultant who just happened to be a long-time friend of Obama’s political hatchet man, David Axelrod.
Obama joined Trinity United Church of Christ (TUCC), whose pastor was Reverend Jeremiah Wright, a fiery orator who just happened to preach Marxism and Black Liberation Theology and who delivered anti-white, anti-Jew, and anti-American sermons, which Obama just happened never to hear because he just happened to miss church only on the days when Wright was at his “most enthusiastic,” and Obama just happened never to notice that Oprah Winfrey left the church because it was too radical, and just happened never to notice that the church gave the vile anti-Semitic Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan a lifetime achievement award.
Although no one had ever heard of him at the time, Obama just happened to receive an impossible-to-believe $125,000 advance to write a book about race relations, which he just happened to fail to write while using the cash to vacation in Bali with his wife Michelle, and despite his record of non-writing he just happened to receive a second advance, for $40,000, from another publisher, and he eventually completed a manuscript called Dreams From My Father, which just happened to strongly reflect the writing style of William Ayers, who just happened to trample on an American flag for the cover photograph of the popular Chicago magazine, which Obama just happened never to see even though it appeared on newsstands throughout the city.
Obama was hired by the law firm Miner, Banhill and Galland, which just happened to specialize in negotiating state government contracts to develop low-income housing, and which just happened to deal with now-imprisoned Tony Rezko and his firm Rezar, and with slumlord Valerie Jarrett, and the law firm’s Judson Miner just happened to have been a classmate of Bernardine Dohrn, wife of William Ayers.In 1994 Obama represented ACORN and another plaintiff in a lawsuit against Citibank for denying mortgages to blacks (Buycks-Roberson v. Citibank Federal Savings Bank), and the lawsuit just happened to result in banks being blackmailed into approving subprime loans for poor credit risks, a trend which just happened to spread nationwide, and which just happened to lead to the collapse of the housing bubble, which just happened to help Obama defeat John McCain in the 2008 presidential election.
In 1996 Obama ran for the Illinois State Senate and joined the “New Party,” which just happened to promote Marxism, and Obama was supported by Dr. Quentin Yong, a socialist who just happened to support a government takeover of the health care system.
In late 1999 Obama purportedly engaged in homosexual activities and cocaine-snorting in the back of a limousine with a man named Larry Sinclair, who claims he was contacted in late 2007 by Donald Young, who just happened to be the gay choir director of Obama’s Chicago church and who shared information with Sinclair about Obama, and Young just happened to be murdered on December 23, 2007, just weeks after Larry Bland, another gay member of the church, just happened to be murdered, and both murders just happened to have never been solved. In 2008 Sinclair held a press conference to discuss his claims, and just happened to be arrested immediately after the event, based on a warrant issued by Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden, who just happens to be the son of Joe Biden.
In 2003 Obama and his wife attended a dinner in honor of Rashid Khalidi, who just happened to be a former PLO operative, harsh critic of Israel, and advocate of Palestinian rights, and who Obama claims he does not know, even though the Obamas just happened to have dined more than once at the home of Khalidi and his wife, Mona, and just happened to have used them as occasional baby-sitters. Obama reportedly praised Khalidi at the decidedly anti-Semitic event, which William Ayers just happened to also attend, and the event Obama pretends he never attended was sponsored by the Arab American Action Network, to which Obama just happened to have funneled cash while serving on the board of the Woods Fund with William Ayers, and one speaker at the dinner remarked that if Palestinians cannot secure a return of their land, Israel “will never see a day of peace,” and entertainment at the dinner included a Muslim children’s dance whose performances just happened to include simulated beheadings with fake swords, and stomping on American, Israeli, and British flags, and Obama allegedly told the audience that “Israel has no God-given right to occupy Palestine” and there has been “genocide against the Palestinian people by (the) Israelis,” and the Los Angeles Times has a videotape of the event but just happens to refuse to make it public.
In the 2004 Illinois Democrat primary race for the U.S. Senate, front-runner Blair Hull just happened to be forced out of the race after David Axelrod just happened to manage to get Hull’s sealed divorce records unsealed, which just happened to enable Obama to win the primary, so he could face popular Republican Jack Ryan, whose sealed child custody records from his divorce just happened to become unsealed, forcing Ryan to withdraw from the race, which just happened to enable the unqualified Obama to waltz into the U.S. Senate, where, after a mere 143 days of work, he just happened to decide he was qualified to run for President of the United States.”
In short: our president is a small-minded man, with neither the temperament nor the intellect to handle his job. When you understand that, and only when you understand that, will the current erosion of liberty and prosperity make any sense. It could not have gone otherwise with such an impostor in the Oval Office.