Liberty endangered by the abuse of power

“Liberty may be endangered by the abuse of liberty,
but also by the abuse of power.”

— James Madison 

As I write a few days before you are reading this, I’m having trouble keeping up with the number of politicians, Hollywood celebrities, and reputable journalists that are being brought down for their repulsive behavior.  The sexual harassment claims against men who hold power, whether in politics or in the workplace or in the newsroom, seems to have exploded since  Harvey Weinstein was exposed as the monster that he is.  While none of this is really shocking, what is surprising is the speed at which they are falling.  It is a stunning toppling of powerful men who have abused their positions for many years.

There are a few lessons that we can learn from this wide-encompassing scandal.

1)  There is no limit to the number of hypocrites in the halls of Congress and in Hollywood and in the newsroom.

2)  There are many women who have suffered from abuse, harassment, or even rape, who were frightened into silence by a society that too often made excuses for the powerful. Too many excused this behavior by thinking that “boys will be boys”.  This is a different time though and we are better for it.  Never again should the Bill Clintons and Ted Kennedys of this world be given a pass.

3)  American love sex scandals, even when they involve victims who have been severely harmed.

4)  We love to defend those on our side when the scandals involve “their guy”.  Whether to believe the accuser or the accused too often depends on their politics.

5)  The court of public opinion can often deliver justice that is swift and effective and just when the courts of justice fail us.

These men who are being brought down have been proven to be weak, immoral characters.  So why did so many idolize them before these scandals?   Why are people so willing to allow these kinds of people to lead them or have influence over them?   If anything, we should learn that just because someone is powerful or wealthy or famous, they are no better than the average citizen.  In fact, I would posit that they likely gained their positions because of the faults, not despite them.    They are addicted to power and they used this power for sexual conquests and violence.  When these men have been flushed out, America will be a better country, intolerant of those who abuse the vulnerable.

We should always question the ethics of those who seek power.  A more effective way to protect the vulnerable than this is to seek ways to limit the power and authority of those who lust for it.  A flawed person with no power is of no consequence to us.

I know that many people are reveling in the schadenfreude that comes from seeing the powerful fall.  In the midst of this glee, let’s not forget their victims, women who have suffered alone, often for many years.  They are victims of evil men who abused power.   Let us all be ever vigilant and ready to knock those who abuse power and position from their pedestals.

​In Liberty,
Ken Mandile
Senior Fellow
Worcester Tea Party

Justice League: A Tea Party Movie Review

Justice League: A Tea Party Movie Review

The Worcester Tea Party Eagle Soars Move Review Justice LeagueJustice League is a wonderful Tea Party movie earning 4.5 / 5 on the Eagle Soars Meter of American Values.  The core theme of the movie illustrates effectively the horrors caused by those who wish to destroy individuality in the name of “unity.”

The maniacal villain Steppenwolf is bent on destroying the world due to his frustration with his inability to produce anything of value.  So he turns this frustration into aggression with the goal of enslaving mankind to serve his will.  This theme illustrates the evil of the ever-present groupthink of public sector unions and all other political entities that consider “solidarity” one of its highest values.

To do this, Steppenwolf wishes for the sum of all power.  As with all people with similar goals, analogous to the political power of today, this can only be achieved through the destruction of the individual, their egos, and their lives in order to bring about the solidarity and coercion necessary to amass a blind following.  Steppenwolf surrounded himself with an army of identical human shaped bug winged monsters born and fed by human fear and willing to do his bidding without any question.

The heroes are of course brilliantly played with obvious undertones of a capitalist morality.  With references to Ayn Rand’s concept of certain people being “. . . the engine of the world” and of course Batman’s admission that his superpower is his immense wealth, we see a clear celebration of success and productivity as well as the willingness of many to voluntarily give back to society.  In the case of Batman, he is driven to use his immense wealth to satisfy his love for justice.

A Profound Observation

The President of the Worcester Tea Party makes a profound observation regarding one of the subthemes of the movie.  Upon completing the viewing, Matt O’Brien stated “It is an interesting juxtaposition between Bruce Wayne, who suppresses his humanity in attempt to gain superpowers and Clark Kent, who suppresses his super powers to gain more humanity.”

This analysis shows brilliantly that even those whom we perceive possess everything, they too want more.  And for both, the ‘more’ that they want is a better world for everyone.

The Use of Fear to Destroy

There’s plenty of action, adventure, narrow escapes and, of course, in the end the bad guy loses, although how Steppenwolf loses is one of the most important underlying concepts that underscores the importance of a capitalist morality.

Steppenwolf fights the heroes in an epic battle, until his weapon is destroyed triggering his fear of failure, which attracts his minions who sense his weakness and strike.  This is reminiscent of what happens at the end of all socialist regimes that adore coercion (e.g. Yugoslavia).  This is not a cautionary tale for every erstwhile dictator (e.g. Mugabe in Zambia).  After Steppenwolf is defeated, the strange horror he had controlled and tried to use for destruction miraculously bursts forth in an array of strange and beautiful flowers as peace and prosperity return.

Statism vs. Individualism

In the philosophy of socialism, progressivism, and communism, morality is founded on the belief that people, at their core, are bad.  Therefore, people must be forced to do good deeds, or in the case of Justice League’s antagonist, evil deeds.  This concept is profound because capitalists understand and truly believe that most people are good.  People whom are unsure of the morality of capitalism find this concept hard to accept; but once they do the philosophy is easily understood and applied:

A society consisting of people who truly own their lives,
when left to act upon their own free will,
will choose to help others.

This is true justice, and the Justice League nails it!

 

Authored by John Niewicki

“Facts are stubborn things”

“Facts are stubborn things;
and whatever may be our wishes,
our inclinations, or
the dictates of our passions,
they cannot alter the
state of facts and evidence”

John Adams 1770 Trial for the British soldiers
involved in the Boston Massacre.

The election of Donald Trump as president has had a terrifying effect on many of our fellow Americans.  One has to look no further than the plans that are being made to have a Protest Scream on Boston Common on the anniversary of Trump’s election and this summer 40,000 of our fellow citizens marched in a “Stand Up to Nazis” event, of course no Nazis were there.

This is the state of politics in our Republic in 2017.  The politics of self-destruction and negative campaigns that have gone on for decades, seeming only to get more vicious and more personal as well as less issue-oriented and less principled every day.  This has turned off a solid majority of Americans from being involved in politics and their government.  Those that are involved are blinded by partisan zeal.  They seem more interested in scoring political points than in effectively crafting policy that serves our Republic.

Such facts could make one cynical about the future of our Republic.  Happily there are other facts that can’t be ignored, hidden or forgotten.

America is built on big dreams, small dreams, and impossible dreams.  Those dreams became facts.  America is the place that people from all over the world come to dream big.  Without dreams not only America, but most of modern society would be impossible.  Without dreams there’d be no airplanes, no satellites, no cell phones, no computers, no movies, no music; what a blighted world this would be if we allowed our dreams to be overcome by our cynicism.

The WTP is made of equal parts dream and cynicism.  We believe that our current political leaders have lost faith with the Dream that America is founded on.  And we still believe in that Dream.  All that we do together is to turn that Dream in to a fact.  The work of the WTP is by necessity profoundly hopeful.

That is not to say that our work is easy.

I am confident that working together we will face all the challenges and overcome every obstacle.  But this cannot happen without you.  The WTP needs you to volunteer your time.  The WTP depends on your donations to support our effort.  Follow the PayPal link and give what you can.

Thank you for all you do in the cause of Liberty.

​In Liberty,
Matt O’Brien
President
Worcester Tea Party

No right to absolute arbitrary power!

In the fall of 1772, Massachusetts House of Representatives member Samuel Adams began to stir up some trouble in Boston.  The legislature had traditionally paid the salaries of the Governor and of judges, but the British decided that they would pay these officials directly.  This removed an important check on power, diminishing the power of the colony’s elected representatives.  Adams had had enough of dirty British political tricks.  It was time for action.

In November, he formed the Committees of Correspondence, effectively forming a shadow government that was not accountable to the crown.  Adams’ document forming the Committees of Correspondence consisted of three parts:

“First, a State of the Rights of the Colonists and of this Province in particular–

Secondly, A List of the Infringements, and Violations of those Rights.–

Thirdly, A Letter of Correspondence with the other Towns.-“

In many ways, it was a precursor to the Declaration of Independence that would follow less than four years later.   Samuel Adams’ declaration of rights goes further than our other founding documents.  He felt that no citizen could voluntarily cede their rights.  These were gifts from God.:

“If men through fear, fraud or mistake, should in terms renounce and give up any essential natural right, the eternal law of reason and the great end of society, would absolutely vacate such renunciation; the right to freedom being the gift of God Almighty, it is not in the power of Man to alienate this gift, and voluntarily become a slave.”

Can we look at today’s federal government and believe anything less than that we have alienated this gift?  While we fight over football players and statues and fake news, others fight to cede their gifts (and ours) to a bloated power in Washington.

Eight years ago this month, tens of thousands of Tea Partiers marched on Washington in the 912 March, demanding an end to the bloat.  Looking back, it seems that much of our effort was futile.  We can look at Washington today and we see little effective effort in Congress to deflate the bubble of bureaucracy.  Yet, many of us still fight on.  The fight is a lot more lonely today, but no less important.  Are we going to cede the gift of liberty through inaction and apathy?   We may not gather again in enormous crowds, but we can fight on alone, in our neighborhoods, and in our towns.  This was where Sam Adams brought the battle.  And, it is there that he helped spark the brush fires of liberty that we celebrate today.

 

​In Liberty,
Ken Mandile
Senior Fellow
Worcester Tea Party

It is better to have and not need, than need and not have.

I was wondering what to title my first writing for the Worcester Tea Party.  It is a phrase I first heard decades ago, early in my law-enforcement career.  It refers to carrying a firearm to defends one’s life.  I have heeded that advice for virtually my entire adult life, both professionally (because I have to) and personally (because I choose to).

 

I am a somewhat rare Tea Party member, also being a government employee.   I have worked as a police officer and a corrections officer for well over thirty years.  I was a certified armorer and firearms instructor.  And I believe that more law abiding citizens should heed the aforementioned advice.

 

I am not writing this for the professional or the person who already carries.  I am not going to tell you that this or that gun or caliber is best. Or even that you should carry.  I will tell you to be as discreet as possible about your choice.  I am writing this to provoke some thought among our good citizenry.

 

I know many people who have carry permits but have never actually carried a firearm for protection. They never think that today is the day they might need it.  I am willing to bet that most law abiding murder victims thought the same.  They didn’t go to where they were murdered thinking, I bet I will get killed here.”

 

I am not suggesting that simply carrying a firearm will guarantee your survival.  It will not!  It takes a lot mote than that.  Hopefully the future will allow us to delve more deeply into the hows and whys.

 

For now, I will list some pros and cons. First, some cons…

 

Depending on your disposable income, firearms and an adequate supply of ammunition for training can be relatively expensive; carrying them (especially concealed) can be uncomfortable and limits your choice of wardrobe; and there is the potential for great civil and criminal penalties in the unlikely event you fire it and kill or injure someone.

 

Now, some pros…

 

Carrying a firearm may save your life; it may save the life of a loved one; it may save the life of a perfect stranger.

 

There are many more cons, but none are as important as the pros!

 

Until next time, stay vigilant.

 

Dean of 2A Studies

Be Civilized Grudges are for Neanderthals

It is with great hesitancy that I wade into the quagmire of this month’s events in Charlottesville and Boston.  Uncontrolled and irrational emotions on both sides seem to have wiped out any chance of civilized conversation about Charlottesville, President Trump, Antifa, White Supremacy, Confederate statues, and other issues that have gripped the news and social media.

 

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Land of Freedom of Speech?

You’ve probably heard this quote or have seen it floating around the internet:

“America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.”

Supposedly Lincoln said it, then it was Reagan who said it. Consensus says it is a gross distortion of one of Lincoln’s speeches, but it makes no difference. The words ring true no matter who said them.

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Another story about Google

The world is in uproar over the Google “Manifesto” written by now ex-Google employee, James Damore. And when I say the world is in uproar, I really mean leftist institutions and the mainstream media, all of which clearly did not read the memo before lambasting the creator as anti-diversity, and more so, anti-woman. If you haven’t had the chance to read the memo for yourself, please do. Any rational person will quickly see the psychosis of the left before leaving the first page. As a contextual side note, I hate to use the term “left” or “right” as it often sells either group short, or is too inclusive, but sometimes I find there to be a lack of a better word and therefore stick with the norm for the sake of ease of read.

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How beauteous mankind is!

 

O wonder!
How many goodly creatures are there here!
How beauteous mankind is!
O brave new world,
That has such people in’t.
— William Shakespeare, The Tempest

I’ve just finished reading Brave New World (when I say “reading’, I really mean listening to on Audible).  Written in 1931 by Aldous Huxley, Brave New World was one of the first dystopian novels, a genre that has gain much popularity in the 21st century, and for good reason.

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All this is what it means to be an American.

Independence Day offers us reason to celebrate and to reflect what it means to be free.  Looking to the revolutionary times of the late 18th century, we see a society where, for the first time in human history, the “common man” came to seize power from his aristocratic oppressors.  Today though, we should be looking beyond the “common man”.  We should all be uncommon.

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