It’s been only a hundred days but it feels like a century. At least that’s how long the “100th day” celebration seemed to have taken. The good news: Fox, in choosing not to air the Prime Time Obama Love – er, I mean “Press” – Conference, won the ratings sweep for that time period. Maybe people are starting to suffer from Obama fatigue. The bad news: Arlen Specter decided, after forty years, he really was a Democrat after all. We now officially have a one-party government with no systematic checks or balances. Great. Kremlin on the Potomac. We better be careful or Napolitano might banish us to the oil fields in North Alaska.
So, what’s a proud red-blooded American to do in these dire times?
Sorry, but that’s the greatest priority. Sure, we can (and should) have fun at regularly scheduled tea parties, but we’ve got to accept the hand fate has dealt us. From the moment W modified the honorable label “conservative” with the lame Alda-esque qualifier “compassionate,” we ought to have known this day would soon be upon us. Yes, just as society lampooned Michael Dukakis for being a “card carrying liberal” in 1988, so, too, the vast popular culture looks with disdain upon “card carrying” conservatives.
True conservatives – those who understand what Liberty meant to our Founding Fathers and why America was and always will be that “Shining City on the Hill” – cannot make the same mistake Dukakis and George W made. True conservatives never will and never should apologize for their love of liberty. We shall wear it like a bold scarlet C emblazoned across our bosom, defying those who choose to stone us, daring those who think they can debate us.
For, you see, imbedded within our very soul lies a deep realization of why Aristotle feared pure democracy. Our form of government – a Republic – as Montesquieu aptly states, demands virtue of its citizens. We embrace the morality that implies it’s more than simply counting all the votes – virtuous policy demands a reasoned debate. Nothing said this more than Benjamin Franklin’s answer to a woman who asked what type of government the Constitutional Convention had agreed upon. Franklin’s terse response: “A republic, if you can keep it.”
But, while survival may be our primary objective, it remains by no means our only objective.
Fortunately, in modern America, the lifeblood of politics comes down to one simple equation: E = mc2. In Washington parlance, this translates to “winning Elections equals Money to Campaign the Citizens.” Without money, therefore, a politician’s electoral hopes vanish faster than the speed of light. Take away an elected official’s money and you take away his mouthpiece. Take away his mouthpiece, and the citizens start worrying about other things like Swine Flu, staying employed and, yes, even paying taxes.
If we are to truly “go Galt” – go on strike, if you will – we need to sacrifice. We need to stop buying products that support our political enemies. Many people think the discipline required to successfully strike represents too high a hurdle for free marketers like us. But, look, it worked (unless you really like ’57 Chevys) for three generations with Cuba. Now is the time we need to shield our collective wallets from the socialist fiefdoms sprouting up across America.
Allow me to offer three effortless ways to Go Galt in our current environment:
1) Identify all public, private, profit and not-for-profit institutions you currently do business with – both directly or indirectly.
2) Understand who gets the money you pay to these institutions and identify on which side of the free market aisle they reside. In other words, are they defending the ideal of America or merely looting the American Dream?
3) Do more business with those who have a kindred spirit and less (hopefully none) with those who are enabling the socialist path Obama seems intent to take us on.
Bear in mind, the opposition is already doing this. They don’t believe in free markets, so every purchase they make becomes a political decision. We need to buckle down. Start small. Start with your accountant, lawyer or financial adviser. These are individuals you ought to know well and who reside in highly competitive businesses. You might not be able to do this with your doctor, so just skip your doctor and move on to easier targets. Share ideas with your like-minded friends.
On a national scale, don’t do business with the banks now beholden to the government and, by all means, don’t buy GM or Chrysler if they become nationalized in any way. Ford might not be perfect, but, of the American car manufacturers, to date it continues to have a better idea.
That’s it. Pure, simple and relatively easy, though not necessarily painless. But, you’ve got to ask yourself one question: How much do you love America? Enough to give up your Cadillac? Enough to stop buying Apple products? Enough to forgo the next Dreamworks or Pixar film – or even the movie version of Atlas Shrugged (I mean, come on, Angelina Jolie as Dagny Taggart?!).
Winning is easy. But it’s up to you to start.