Thursday, December 29, 2011

Elections in America and Israel: Four scenarios

By Bernie Quigley

For The Hill on 11/29/11

It is more like a brick wall than a turning; the thump heard when the first primaries are finally held in the next weeks. Here are four scenarios on how history could turn at Iowa, New Hampshire and Israel.

Romney/Perry: There are three conservatives running in Iowa says Rick Santorum; himself, Rick Perry and Michele Bachmann. Primary season is about who you like to dance with. Voting at the end, who you will marry. Of these three Perry seems the best fit for Iowa country folk with a farm backbone. While Romney a slam dunk in NH. Rightly so because you know what, Romney camp returns your calls and they always did, even on little items like that Russians-are-coming thing I wrote here a few days ago. Romney/Perry ticket would work because Romney really is a problem solver and would see this ticket as following the post war demographics and dynamics of business, energy and people in our time; with one hand holding on to the East as governor of Massachusetts, but following the demographics west with Perry.

Romney/Paul: But if Paul wins Iowa it would bring a new day to America. There will be a new party. Actually a new movement naturally awakened in the middle of the country with help from Sarah Palin and the roar of the Tea Party crowd, turning now into a real political faction. Solid stock Iowans would be putting their backs behind a new establishment. A new two-party system could emerge: Republicans with Romney at the helm and Libertarians with Ron Paul. But I wish the Libertarians would change their name to the Federalists or something because in the true Jeffersonian mold, that is what they are. Libertarian sounds like a religion hatched in the mountains of New Hampshire in the 1830s.

Romney/Bush: Romney slam duck again. It would be a tragic historic error if Romney, hoping to appease the traditionalist longing, bows to the temptation to bring in Jeb Bush as VP. What is of significant historic action in this race and the next is that America has finally moved past the monarchist temptation to be governed by Massachusetts families, the one which vacations in Kennebunkport or the one which vacations in Nantucket, which has drained American creativity for at least two generation. If politics does not follow the contours of rising history, conflict results.

Israel: There is a race in Israel at the end of January for Chairmanship of the Likud to challenge the party leadership of Benjamin Netanyahu. It comes from Moshe Feiglin and the Jewish Leadership group constantly called "extreme right" in the establishment press. It is not extreme anything but does bring a new political and cultural paradigm to Israel, one similar to that proposed by Thomas Jefferson in America. Recently, Netanyahu called Israel a “liberal Western democracy.” His leadership is actually comes from generational demographics based on American pop culture and political influence. There is no West. It has ended in Europe. None in America either. Feiglin's group has called for a rejection of American aid to Israel (as Paul does). This is seen as extremist by many America Jews and others who see Israel in an American perspective as a half-child of America. And that is the issue. In our time, Israel has prospered. It has also become more Jewish and is ready to drop the American mask. A Feiglin victory in Israel would engage a new generation of governance and bring a new future to Israel.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

How to fix a corrupt Congress? A Governor's Council (Ron Paul/Joe Miller '12)

By Bernie Quigley

For The Hill on 11/28/11

There is easily available testimony from the best among us, warrior scholars such as Jim Webb, Lawrence Wilkerson, Wesley Clark and the gone-but-not-forgotten Robert C. Byrd of West Virginia, that the invasion of Iraq was a plot by a very small group of governmental advisors and mainstream journalists who had commandeered the so-very-vulnerable imagination of President George W. Bush. At the time it was apparent to anyone who cared to look. But Congress did not care to look. Today, as Iraq falls apart, we pay the price: The price of George W. Bush and the Congress of Easter Peeps is Ron Paul.

Paul's influence is authentic and real. If he wins Iowa he could then go on to New Hampshire, but Iowa is more important. It represents the heart which in the end drives America and to which America will ultimately answer.

But Paul can only change Congress temporarily. If a new grass-roots wave comes in there will be a lot of shouting for awhile and throwing the bums out, but the problems of centralization are systemic to the system, and that is the source of our problems. When influence coalesces in one place, money will inevitably follow. And as Ross Douthat said this morning in the New York Times, Rick Perry's idea of a part-time Congress will only bring more lobbyists. And again in short order, Congresswomen and men will find the insider track to wealth though their legislative positions.

Few are brave. The problem is not the people in Congress. They are no more vulnerable to temptation that the rest of us. The problem is the system of centralization. It was a perfect system for when America was three cities and a forest in 1776, but in seeing the future, it no longer works.

Nor will the excellent ideas of Paul and Rick Perry, who bring a thoroughly new approach to government and one well suited to the times and to America’s future. But these ideas won’t work because the states, accept maybe Texas, Alaska and Kansas, are fully unprepared to take on greater authority and new responsibilities. Most states, such as Vermont under Governor Peter Shumlin, would be like those unfortunate Soviet sub states suddenly let out into the light in 1991, but they forgot who they were, they forgot their real names.

America is ready to mature in the middle, where farms stretch into the horizon as in a Thomas Hart Benton painting. But it needs a proper form and matrix to do so. It needs regional representation answering to itself: a Governors Council answering to a single elected representative governor, to end the social and ethnic tribalism that has resulted from the Hamilton view, to watch Congress and the President and hold in check their authority, and to nurture the Jeffersonian moral and economic growth and competition of the states and regions. Then they will be ready for Paul and Perry.

Alaska's Joe Miller, combat veteran and warrior-scholar with the highest credentials, would be a great match up with the more theoretical Ron Paul in this direction, either on a third party or at the head of the Republican ticket in 2012.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Russian troops above America’s border: Canada’s ‘Red Dawn’ moment?

By Bernie Quigley

For The Hill on 12/26/11

In August 2007, at the end of a series of war games uniting China and Russia, the Russians planted their flag at the North Pole, that singular place on earth where the world’s axis seems to align itself with the North Star. The planting of the flag was a Sputnik moment but underwater. Its purpose was to territorialize our northern regions as surely as a dog of war would pee on the frozen tundra to ward off Canadian coyotes. It should have been, but President George W. Bush, his imagination filled of visions of Armageddon in the Holy Land conjured by Appalachian mountain preachers, missed it. Presidential hopefuls, Mitt Romney and Rick Perry in particular, should not. Until recently, threats to America via the splendid isolation of the Arctic seemed absurd. But now it is reported that Russia intends to send a combat brigade.

The Arctic is transforming before our eyes, Heather A. Conley reports on Christmas in The Washington Post, and not just because the ice is melting. The U.S. Energy Information Administration estimates that the Arctic contains 13 percent of the world’s undiscovered oil resources and 30 percent of its gas resources. And as the ice melts, cargo transport could increase from the 111,000 tons in 2010 to more than 1 million tons in 2012, according to some Russian estimates.

It is increasingly the site of military posturing. “Russia has plans to establish a brigade that is specially equipped and prepared for military warfare in Arctic conditions,” she writes.

Does the presence of a Russian brigade present an existential threat to Canada; a ‘Red Dawn’ moment? Because if it does, it presents the same threat to America.
President Obama did the right thing in sending a few hundred troops to Australia, apparently symbolic action geared to the rise of China’s influence in the region. But questions arise if we would likewise defend our far more intimate Anglosphere kin, Canada.

Canadian foreign policy scholar Irvin Studin at the University of Toronto’s School of Public Policy and Governance has single-handedly and perhaps presciently warned of a “new strategic reality” in which war could come to our continent. Under new circumstances he writes, the U.S. “might very well raise the threshold beyond which it would be willing to directly defend or intervene to defend Canada in the event of an attack. The U.S. of this new century [weakened economically and weary of war abroad] will let many sleeping dogs lie.” The astonishing rise of Ron Paul’s isolationism is testament to Studin’s thesis.

The Star, a Canadian periodical, reports that Russia’s new Arctic security force will include 590 ground and sea-based units and 384 aviation units, raising fears that this is a disguised and destaibilzing military buildup. Russia says it is to guard against terrorists, smugglers, illegal fishers, and other interlopers. But Putin’s fresh show of force includes a multi-billion program to build a new generation of nuclear submarines to patrol the Northern Sea Route, he announced last month.

Any threat on Canada's northern borders is as great a threat to America as it is to Canada. It is said that there is nothing between Minnesota and the Arctic Circle but a bunch of fences. I’ve been there. There are no fences. But now a Russian brigade is on the way.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Free Kansas

By Bernie Quigley

For The Hill on 12/22/11

The “revolution in a corn field” that is happening today in Governor Sam Brownback's Kansas is potentially as important as what happened here in 1776. Because in the last two years the states have learned that they don't have to do what the federal government tells them to do. They can think for themselves and govern themselves, just as Dorothy promised. As the Washington Post reports with an excellent article today titled “In Kansas, Gov. Sam Brownback puts tea party tenets into action with sharp cuts”: “If you want to know what a Tea Party America might look like, there is no place like Kansas. In the past year, three state agencies have been abolished and 2,050 jobs have been cut. Funding for schools, social services and the arts have been slashed. The new Republican governor rejected a $31.5 million federal grant for a new health-insurance exchange because he opposes President Obama’s health-care law. And that’s just the small stuff.”

It is the essence of the Tea Party and it is the essence of Jeffersonian democracy. And in this election it was said here the other day it could go one of two ways: There is loud, boisterous and thoughtless Tea Party support for the ideas of Newt Gingrich that advance big government further and to the direction of totalitarianism. Then there is the original item advanced by Ron Paul, Gary Johnson, the Tenth Amendment Center and Judge Andrew Napolitano; states thinking form themselves and freeing themselves from an archaic historic overlord. But someone needed to take action and Kansas has. This could not have been accomplished by any president even one sympathetic to these initiatives like Texas governor Rick Perry.

Working with Arthur Laffer, former Reagan adviser, Kansas is developing a working strategy for self governance. It will be a model now for other states, states in the middle with similar economies which want to go the way again - the American way - of sound money, hard work and self government.

If Ron Paul wins Iowa - Dorothy Rabinowitz of the WSJ who advanced Gingrich weeks back this morning declares Paul to be “the best-known propagandist for our enemies” (Surrender Dorothy!) - and he is doing well in New Hampshire, we will have a new party system. One a combo of Dems and Republicans (“No Labels”? Whigs?); Republicans such as George W. Bush and Dems like Obama with the same policies with cosmetic differences. The other a Jeffersonian party in the direction of Gary Johnson, Judge Nap and Ron Paul. Economically this might be seen as a shift in contention from the twins that have ravaged the world for 150 years Marx and Keynes to one between Keynes and Hayek. This returns us to our original nature: Hamilton v Jefferson.

Even today, thanks to Brownbach and Laffer it is possible to see a Jeffersonian century ahead.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Frodo lives: “The return of the king”

by Bernie Quigley

For The Hill on 12/21/11

In 1967 I walked the night through around two top secret nuclear weapons buried not so deep in the heartland of Ohio’s vast corn belt. One day I noticed that someone has scrawled on the wall, "Frodo lives." Then it was everywhere. Frodo had become an overnight hero of an underground movement begun inadvertently by a mild mannered Catholic Oxford professor of Middle English who in 1937 published a charming book about hairy dwarves and little people, “The Hobbit.” Frodo became in no time at all the avatar of rising Aquarius. “The Hobbit,” prelude to the journey of Frodo featuring his uncle Bilbo, (like John Lennon and his son Sean, born on the same day) hits the big screen this year on Dec 14, 2012.

Any advocates of Aquarius not yet laughed out of the domain? Surely the date will strike a primal cord: 12/14/12, two days after the storied end of the world just ahead, December 12, 2012.

The century ahead is said to be the rising first of 20 centuries of Aquarius. Will it be different from the last century or last say, the last 500 years? It already is. It will be marked by a returning to earth of English imagination. Consider when my father was a boy what captured his imagination. Frank Reade, Jr. and his airships and steam-powered robots, Buck Rogers, Captain Z-Ro, Flash Gordon on his mythic journey to the planets. Imagination was rising as Walt Whitman had written in 1900, to Sirius, Jupiter and beyond. In the 1950s UFO visions shook the world and if you look closely they resembled the oculus architecture at the pitch of the arc of Byzantium cathedrals; “eyes of God,” very many hovering strangely over the Mormon lands.

But as Steve Jobs has said, virtually his last words, in fact, “The spaceship has landed.”

Today my kids are inspired and awakened since the 1990s by the earth shaman who preceded Newton and even Calvin, Harry Potter, returning America to its oldest English psychic ancestor. And Tolkien goes beyond to the “shadow of the past,” to Tom Bombadil, the earth spirit itself, here before river, trees, acorn and the first raindrop.

And look to the currency on TV today; “The River” coming in February from Steven Spielberg, following the trend of “Lost,” all returning to earth myths but with the inherent mysteries we saws in planetary pop culture of the fifties, found here again on earth. Even the popular “Survivor” series has a “returning” quality, as if in the Eliot poem of returning where we know the place for the first time

Maybe that is our time again. It should be a good time because when the journey to Jupiter and beyond is finished, says Whitman and we come home to ourselves, and “The true son of God shall come singing his songs." And that, with Tolkien, is the promise; the end of golem’s long shadow and “the return of the king.” And that is the promise of rising Aquarius.

Worth noting today on the last solstice before the fiery end. Or not. Maybe an end only to seeing and seeking things in the sky and a beginning again to find ourselves here on earth where we actually live.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Rick Perry rising

Bernie Quigley

For The Hill on 12/20/11

7.57 million viewed the ABC debate on December 10. Nallie Andreeva reports on Deadline:Hollywood: “ABC News’ Republican presidential debate drew 7.6 million total viewers on Saturday, 2.1 million of them in the 25-54 demographic. Titled Your Voice, Your Vote – Republican Presidential Debate in Iowa, the special ranks as the most-watched debate of the 2012 presidential campaign to date, eclipsing Fox News’ Sept. 22 telecast, which averaged 6.1 million viewers."

Suggests that “normal people”; people who do not compulsively follow politics, are only recently beginning to get serious about the upcoming primaries in the last week.

The Gallup poll out December 19 indicating Republican preferences for 2012 GOP Presidential nomination and recent trends indicates that since the December 10 debate Gingrich sank 7, bringing him even with Romney. Romney and Paul remain flat. Bachmann up then down. Santorum, Huntsman flat since Dec. 11.

Only Rick Perry graphs steady rising progress since last Tuesday, Dec. 13, when people started to watch in greater numbers.
Did George W. Bush destroy America? Will Gingrich?

By Bernie Quigley

For The Hill on 12/19/11

Ruling class suggests Kim Jong-il’s son is in charge, as sclerotic North Korea like Greece pitches its third family member. And Jeb Bush likewise hovers this morning again at the top of the WSJ op ed page as his family seeks, strives and hopes for a brokered convention. Because without Bush (III) there is no America. And given the state of the Republican Party, crippled by money, influence, think tanks, nostalgia, the WSJ op ed page, too many Bushes and dead ideas as it seeks it's worthy, it is not unlikely. Newt Gingrich? That Gingrich this weekend brings in Abraham Lincoln, liberator of the world, avatar of the awakening centuries, to legitimize a miscreant like George W. Bush and advance his own feral visions of dictatorship and authoritarianism borders on the demonic. Iowa voters take note.

Time measures us by the size and status of our enemies: Nelson/Napolean, Grant/Lee, Churchill/Hitler, Roosevelt/ Stalin, George W. Bush/Kim Jong-il. But Gingrich begins the age. His claim that if elected president he would reign in the judiciary is a brilliant and dangerous ploy, peeling back the illusions of the American dilemma and slashing its idols, Lincoln, to expand his ever-growing girth. The Presidency has the right to reign in the Supreme Court, he claims, because it has done so twice before. The president of course has no right to reign in the Supreme Court and a president who does so should be thrown in the D.C. jail with the general population.

Then what was Lincoln’s authority in the invasion of the South and for freeing the slaves? Not the constitution. "Higher law." The law of God. In freeing the slaves Lincoln took the “higher law” path and even Rand Paul, primo libertarian and states’ rights advocate, acknowledges that morally, he did the right thing. Likewise, in the same theme and forum, God apparently gave Bush the right to torture the already pitiful foreign devils under the thumb of Osama bin Laden.

This authority came from God? As did Henry VIII, W. Bush declared himself to be the agent of “higher law” and the emissary of God. And Gingrich intends to do so as well.

In the Washington Post this weekend comes essential reading. The withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq this month marks the passing of an era, claims Andrew J. Bacevich, a retired Army colonel and Boston University professor, who would make a very excellent VP candidate for Ron Paul if Wes Clark can’t take the job. President George H.W. Bush heralded the approach of a “new world order” he writes. But lacking poetry, his formulation never caught on. And that which never began ends today with American troops leaving Iraq.

Gingrich is today as always, the Trickster. But as Obi-wan Kenobi advanced it, the Trickster’s power is only advanced by the people’s inclination to deception. He tips the statues of our gigundous idols to find the weasel work underneath. But in this we find Newt, the Tea Party champion to be in fact the antithesis of Tea Party. Tea party speaks for the states as Rick Perry does and Ron Paul does. In that regard, Tea Party speaks to our future. Newt paves the way to Bismarck, Kim and himself and he understands that we are at the moment of essential change today and it can go either way.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Ron Paul and Moshe Feiglin

By Bernie Quigley

For The Hill on 12/13/11

Last year, when the idea of the Tea Party was beginning to catch on, the New York Times ran a story on the rising Tea Party in Israel. On stage was Moshe Feiglin, an Israeli leader and I would say authentic, indegeneous folk hero. Feiglin is the head of the Jewish Leadership Movement which seeks to turn “the state of Jews into a Jewish state.” Feiglin and company were Tea Party before Tea Party was cool and before it became loud. I was writing about the Tea Party at the beginning and for two years at least, every day, Ron Paul and I were on the same page. It was why I first became interested in Feiglin. As Paul rises in Iowa he will carry America, whether he wins or not. He will not go away. The same can be said of Feiglin.

The Tea Party has even become imperial with Glenn Beck’s resent sojourn to Israel to declare Christian solidarity. His call was famously repudiated by Feiglin and several well known Senators who planned to attend suddenly cancelled. But America’s vision has always been imperial regarding Israel. We intend to help, but imperialists always do. Many Americans see Israel as a pseudo-American state in which they somehow have a say. George Schultz, advisor to George W. Bush, once said on The News Hour with Jim Lehrer that as a Christian he “has a say” in Israel. With no mean intention. It is taken for granted by those who love Israel most; Christians in the heartland and American Jews in the northeast.

Israel in recent years has become more Jewish. Jewish Americans have become more American.

My interest in Israel is correctly described by former Mayor Ed Koch of NY: After 9/11 “an attack on Israel is an attack on America.” In a conversation recently, Feiglin framed it more elegantly: An attack on Israel, he said, “is an attack on freedom.”

Feiglin brings a challenge to Benjamin Netanyahu’s leadership on January 31. Events there could very well parallel events here in Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina.

Rafi Farber, a young Israel supporter, sees a parallel between Paul and Feiglin. “Ron Paul is to Government Spending as Moshe Feiglin is to the Oslo Peace Process,” he writes.

“America made a decision in 1913 on big government,” he blogs from Samaria. “To change that direction requires not simply a change in style. It requires a 180 degree paradigm shift in the way America thinks about itself as a country,” and as Paul brings that paradigm change to America, so does Feiglin to Israel. And that includes aid to Israel: “Both Ron Paul and Moshe Feiglin are trying to do the impossible and change the way their countries think about themselves. And both Ron Paul and Moshe Feiglin want America to stop giving foreign aid to Israel.”

Indeed, as Feiglin wrote years back in his book, The War of Dreams:

. . . the State of Israel, with the GNP of a modern country, can easily do without aid that amounts to just one and one half percent of its budget – aid for which Israel essentially surrenders its independence. Why do Israelis insist on developing a sense of imaginary dependence on the U.S. and Europe, specifically at the point that Israel is both economically and militarily vigorous? The answer to that question is not at all connected to Israel's military or economic capabilities. It is on a totally different plane.
The Hill

Newt Gingrich: The world begins with Trickster

By Bernie Quigley

For The Hill on 12/13/11

The conventional wisdom is that Newt can’t get elected so Romney should be pushed. Same was said of Barack Obama. Certainly Newt can get elected and a Gingrich/Rick Perry ticket or Gingrich/Jon Huntsman ticket or a Gingrich/Nikki Haley ticket would bring a new political agenda. Possibly only Gingrich can bring it to Washington. The Trickster starts the world again and Newt is the Trickster.

What he says shocks because it is true. And we know it is true. We just haven’t been saying that since at least 1992 and the Oslo Accords or even before. I felt we turned the corner to cloud cuckoo land when Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and George H.W. Bush began taking foreign policy advice from Bob Geldorf. (Geldorf, who can fairly be called squalid, was a singer in the Boom Town Rats, an Irish punk band. He was the Monkey Trickster who legitimized Bono and Lady Gaga as foreign policy luminaries.) Since then we say these things are true because we have accepted them to be, like taking Pinocchio to be the real boy, we know they are not true but they feel nice and if so many of us say the same thing we believe them to be. And we don’t want any trouble. The wooden boy is good enough. But they were never true and only the Trickster – he comes with the sword and cuts through the false consciousness of the establishment press like butter – can lift the curtain.

A Gingrich/Perry or Gingrich/Huntsman or Gingrich/Bobby Jindal operation in the White House in 2012 is a very real possibility, even at the moment, a probability. Gingrich understands the new day. He is not beholden to old family sentiment and the ancient regime. The new starts with the Trickster. And he is essential for the new to begin, like John Brown or Bob Dylan. There would have been no Lincoln without Brown – Thoreau and Emerson would not have brought in the New England preachers. And without Dylan the Beatles would still be in the floppy wigs, playing Bar Mitzvahs and weddings. They have said as much. The Trickster awakens the world.

Then he goes away. A classic Trickster run today would be a Gingrich/Perry or Huntsman ticket. Changing everything. New foreign policy, balanced budget, the whole nine yards. Then two years in the horde that brought him there tires of him and decides to throw him out. And as quickly as he slips in, coyote Trickster slips back into the forest. Then the great man takes over, whoever that would be. Probably who Newt brings in now as his VP: Huntsman, Perry, Haley, someone else yet unsuspected as Gingrich always does the unexpected. It is the way of the Trickster.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

A Christmas wish: England and the Anglosphere

by Bernie Quigley

For The Hill on 12/12/11

A clever young Israeli writes that Bathsheba should be looked at as the cosmic feminine principle of the Jewish people; the equal and opposite counterforce to the cosmic male principal, David. The history of the Jews and Israel’s four external children in the outside world - Orthodox, Muslim, Catholic, Protestant - all evolved from one moment between these two. I think the term for that moment is coniunctio; the sacred marriage, the marriage of the divine spirit. It was the moment that produced Solomon, his temple and his kingdom. The moment time rose from an empty desert to become the world.

I hope those toothless labor leaders who brag of their shiny new Jaguars and who so want to yield England’s birth right and sovereignty to Germany catch the magnificent Canadian-produced series The Tudors to see that we in England and North America were born as well in coniunctio, like Solomon, in lust and panic, and our own tribal mother this side of Israel is Anne Boleyn, mother of Elizabeth I. It was Elizabeth who gave the England its kingdom and Elizabeth who created the modern world. Her psychic ancestor, the White Goddess of Birth, Love, and Death, was worshiped under countless titles for a thousand years preceding her in pre-history, celebrated at the winter solstice. A testament to England’s old soul; a virtual “old testament” of England, is well documented in a classic text by Robert Graves, “The White Goddess.”

Maybe It is just too late for us. Maybe England, like America, has already been killed by populism and sociology and journalism and political science; the nerd prom, Bono and the smart phone, and has to start again at zero, like in the first day of the Christ, year zero. Today, the shadow of Benny Hill quite literally stalks the Republican primary. Possibly we have wandered just too far away from mother.

Germany gains strength. Sarko was always Angela’s bitch and as is clear today, France's fate was fixed in Vichy France. She, France, will be German in time but England should stay with us.

The American Revolution drove us apart but WW II brought us back together. We belong together. We, the U.S. and England should begin now to formalize our primal root, our history and own relationship; we plus Canada, Australia, New Zealand and any other of the English-speaking people brought together again in WW II. For Germany has outgrown the Anglo-American conquest and soon will outgrow Angela. (Did we think they would forget? Did they forget Napoleon?)

With the successful rise of the economic East, America for the first time finds a margin on the left where our free range comes to a stop. With the rise of Germany and its EU, England finds the same margin to its right, the same one that has always been there.

Ottawa, jewel of the Great White North at the top of the world, should be looked at today as the beginning spot of something that resembles the EU but instead as the most obvious union of English-speaking nations which still hang together in spirit. Hatched all in time from the same lusty and panicky coitus of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn.

The UN, NATO, EU, etc. are really packages resulting from the WW II conquest, but the victory now is past and Poland today begs for Germany to save it. Anglosphere is a better fit for times ahead for England and North America.

Friday, December 09, 2011

Free New England. Free California. Martha Coakley to the rescue.

. . . states rights’, states’ rights, states’ rights . . .
Texas Governor Rick Perry, April 15, 1009

When I proposed up here at the buildup to the war on Iraq that if the United States no longer wanted to be part of the UN then New England should send its own represented, it brought a kindly note from John Kenneth Galbraith who thought it “ . . . wonderfully to the good.” America’s greatest ambassador since Franklin, George Kennan, like Galbraith, almost into his hundreds, proposed New England secession. “We are a monster country . . .” he wrote, and proposed decentralizing the U.S. into a dozen constituent republics. Harvard’s pastor, Rev. Peter Gomes, proposed a new Hartford Convention like the one during the War of 1812.

Possibly Emerson’s anthem and manifesto of New England self reliance is beginning to sink in. Martha Coakley, Massachusetts Attorney Generally, following Emerson’s order to “go alone,” takes initiative on her state’s behalf. From the Massachusetts Real Estate Law Blog: “Breaking away from the proposed 50 state attorney general settlement talks, Mass. Attorney General Martha Coakley has filed a monumental consumer protection lawsuit over wrongful foreclosures against the top 5 U.S. lenders, Bank of America Corp., J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., Wells Fargo & Co., Citigroup Inc. and Ally Financial.”

The Democrats hate Wall Street and the Republicans hate Washington, D.C. As George Will wrote this week, Texas Governor Rick Perry doesn’t like either very much. Which in my opinion makes him the man for our times. New England is a place. Texas is a place. Let them think for themselves. Take the training wheels off.

The timing of Coakley’s action seems a manifestation of Occupy; moving from the amorphous to the actual. That is, moving from rest to an awakening. I propose Coakley take it further and run for governor on this; Governor of New England.

And California Assemblyman Felipe Fuentes, a Democrat from Sylmar, CA, for governor of California. He is gathering signatures for a ballot initiative for what he calls the California Opportunity and Prosperity Act, in which hundreds of thousands of undocumented immigrants living in California could work without the threat of deportation. But this could be a job for Arnold Schwarzenegger, no? He seems at loose ends. (“I’ll be back!”)

California is falling apart because it is a free state which, like Tibet, must answer to power thousands of miles away. Companies and capital are fleeing to the hinterland. A major India journal recently suggested that if the U.S. wanted to jumpstart the economy it should bring in several million East Asians, Chinese, South Koreans and others thereabouts to start a new economic cycle. As New England brought in Irish workers in the 1830s and later. It gave New England a hundred years. California should be able to make its own judgments on this.

Arizona’s immigration issues last year brought a legal prelude. Not a lawyer, but as I understood it, Arizona was not within its Constitutional rights to make decisions on immigration. Nor is California. Fuentes knows that. So it is a Constitutional issue: Does California have the right to override federal legislation by state referendum? No, the real question is, should it?

A question for Judge Andrew Napolitano.

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Rick Perry and Mike Huckabee should join in the Trump debate

By Bernie Quigley

For The Hill on 12/8/12

Mike Huckabee should join the Donald Trump debate on Dec. 27 pitched by Dick Morris as “the most important Presidential debate in American history.” Potentially, yes. At least since 1860. And Rick Perry must be there as well. This is the big fight and The Donald is Don King.

Because there is panic in the primaries as the Establishment attempts to gather itself. This morning there are two pictures of New Jersey governor Chris Christie on the opinion pages of the Wall Street Journal, suggesting – “just talk and just speculation . . . hypothetical” - a write-in campaign and a brokered convention. They would feature those who are not Newt Gingrich or Mitt Romney like Mitch Daniels, who used to work for the Bush family, and Christie, who hopes to in the future. And did I mention Jeb Bush? His name tags on at the end there. How about Chris Christie? How about Jeb Bush? How about Jeb Bush in a Chris Christie mask?

Jennifer Rubin’s column in the Washington Post features a Goofus and Gallant contrast:

Gingrich, for example, in his over-the-top style called this election the most important since 1860. Christie at lunch had mocked the elf-importance [sic] of those who say such things. Gingrich at one point declared that he’d need not just eight years but solid majorities in the Congress. Christie had chided pols who are obsessed with the time in office rather than the progress they make on big issues. Gingrich explained how he couldn’t get anything done without big GOP majorities. Christie had spoken about how a leader can pull in Democratic support. . . The speech certainly revealed Gingrich’s exaggerated regard for his own intellect, his tone deafness, his penchant for self-delusion and his serious handicap in reaching voters beyond the GOP base.

All the result of the venerable WSJ Dorothy Rabinowitz’s column a few weeks back dragging Newt out of rural obscurity to the top of the polls. Lonely are the brave.

Possibly the panic is greater in Iowa and more significant. I may have this wrong but as I understand it there is no ballot in Iowa so anyone can enter at any time. So Mike Huckabee, the former Arkansas governor who won there last time, could still enter Iowa. And he seems as a good a fit for Iowa as Christie does for Wall Street.

I don't see Iowans voting for Newt, who not long ago converted to Catholicism. His conversion seems the Dutch Schultz model popular with politicians today: Schultz lived a life of ruin and mayhem and converted on his death bed. It appeared suspicious to us in the Catholic school. Iowans might prefer John Bunyan’s Christian on the road to the Celestial City. Someone more like Ron Paul in principal. But not in real life. I don’t see them voting for him either; too much like John Bunyan’s Christian. Paul is a revolutionary and Iowa is not yet in revolutionary times. Nor do I see them voting for Mitt Romney. The mischievous video “Romney: Stuff the Ice Chest” (“I would force spiders and badgers on the enemy!”) hits a spooky cord. Earthy Iowans intuit Romney’s 7% creep factor.

That leaves Texas governor Rick Perry hovering around at 11% in fourth place behind Gingrich, Paul and Romney. Iowa is still unsettled and Perry is a good fit. As good and natural a fit as Huckabee was last time around when he came from behind to win.

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Draft Mike Huckabee

By Bernie Quigley

For The Hill on 11/7/11

In the new Gallup poll virtually all of the support for Herman Cain has translated into support for Newt Gingrich. He stands at 37% now and Romney is at 22%, where he has been all year. Everyone else is in single digits. Newt Gingrich or Mitt Romney? Really? How about Mike Huckabee? I can’t think of anyone better prepared to be President. I can’t think of a better man. It is not too late.

Huck gave it long consideration early on. He might have seen Texas Governor Rick Perry riding over the horizon pretty tall in the saddle. As Gingrich said, if Perry could adapt to the national scene there would be no stopping him. Then something happened with Perry and I still can’t figure out exactly what. For whatever reason, he decided in that environment to stay out. It might be wise in this environment to get back in. Gingrich and Romney are not satisfying options.

He won Iowa last time around. He would likely win this year again if he was in. And against Gingrich and Romney in South Carolina he would likely do well. Florida too. There is a pall over this race now. GOP leadership is not pleased with the contest between the current front runners. No one is except Team Obama.

And Huck has very good Tea Party kung fu. Not the shouting and hollering kind like Gingrich, Dick Armey and Glenn Beck bring forth. Huck is no iconoclast or renegade. The mature format of his forum over the weekend brought high marks from the Tenth Amendment Center, on the front lines of Tea Party relevance.

“The emphasis you saw placed on limiting the powers of the federal government during the forum reflects an awakening we’re seeing across America,” Tenth Amendment Center communications director Mike Maharrey said. “People are concerned about the growing power and intrusiveness of the federal government – from the whole health care issue to concerns that the government is disregarding our civil liberties in the name of security. People are recognizing we need to return to the proper balance of power between the state and federal government intended by the founders.”

“Huck’s forum brought us back to the philosophical underpinnings of conservatism,” said Janis Cherry, Director of Policy during his presidential run. “Too much of this campaign so far has been about nonsense like the HPV vaccine causing retardation or children working as janitors or ‘corporations are people’ that has made the GOP look stupid and silly. Huck showcased the candidates in a setting that was serious and substantive, something Bill Buckley would have approved.”

Exactly. Probably why his popularity today seems broader and deeper than it was four years ago. A Catholic journal likewise gave his forum highest kudos.

Huck should rethink. In hindsight, he was a man ahead of his time and ours and maybe his time is now.
Perry should attend the Donald Trump event

By Bernie Quigley

For The Hill on 12/7/11

They come in twos, it is advised in Star Wars, but which is the emperor and which is the sith? And there are still today two New Yorks, the high brow brahmins and the broad shoulders of the working class. Everything else is precariously perched in the in between. Jimmy Breslin and Norman Mailer. The gut brain and the ethereal. But New York today as always gets its power from the broad shoulders. And say what else you like about Donald trump, he's down with the people. And he represents New York, still the center of the world, in its gut. All candidates should attend his debate.

The Bloomberg/Washington Post debate was supposed to be the high brow event in this race, featuring Charlie Rose as moderator, bow tie wearers and Al Hunt. Good for the people who read the New Yorker and dine at The Leopard at des Artistes. But are you likely to run across Rose at the Frazier/Foreman fight? You might have run across Norman Mailer there with his bud Donald Trump.

Particularly among conservatives, that which we used to proudly call working class, as working class hero John Lennon did, has been commandeered today by ideologists, religious fanatics and the dangerously disturbed like Glenn Beck. Trump today is quintessentially New York, although Tom Wolfe snarks at his tacky architecture. That is part of it. This is New York, not Versailles. Let Trump ask the questions.

All who attended the Dartmouth debate should go to this one as well as more than any of the others in our times it is likely to be the people's forum. Especially those who took the free meal; Rick Perry, Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich and Michele Bachmann and didn't slip out the back door. It's the Donald buck. He should not let that one back in.

Monday, December 05, 2011

Time for a third party with Gary Johnson

by Bernie Quigley

For The Hill on 12/6/11

I said “hey” to Gary Johnson as he was standing mournfully outside the state house in Concord, NH, when he signed on to the primary. The former governor of New Mexico seemed the most normal or human of the candidates; does not “prepare a face to meet the faces that he meets” or see himself as an object that is Gary Johnson, candidate, as most of the others see themselves. We talked of Tuckerman Ravine and New Hampshire. He said recently on the John Stossel show that he could possibly run as a third-party candidate. I hope he does.

Others threaten to do so, like Trump and Bloomberg, but they would run as third or fourth gargantuan party just like the other two but with themselves as the new Godzilla.

But Gary Johnson, with Ron Paul, has added enormously to this campaign. As he told Stossel, the rising energies in conservatism today are in Libertarianism and Johnson is a libertarian. Most of the gargantuans, or globalists or neo-totalitarians - Clinton, Bono, Trump, Bloomberg - act out of a basic anthropology which would claim that if you can conquer New York City then you have conquered the citadel and you have conquered the world. The presumption is that people are sheep, but our two existing globalist parties helped make them sheep. There is little inner satisfaction in conquering sheep. A libertarian third party approach would liberate individuals, freeing them from the neurosis to “save the world” and guide the child instead to Krishnamurti’s direction, allowing them to free and conquer themselves as individuals and as communities. This cannot be done with a top down, one-size-fits-all federal government.

I was drafted into libertarianism in 2003 when I wrote an article titled “A states’ rights defense against Dick Cheney.” It took a long time to figure out what it was, but Johnson, Ron and Rand Paul and Judge Andrew Napolitano have clarified things. I claimed then not knowing it was libertarian that New Hampshire and Vermont need not participate in the war on Iraq citing Jefferson’s Kentucky Resolutions.

In those days it seemed only a few hundred were listening, but today millions nightly follow Judge Andrew Napolitano on states’ rights, constitutional government, Austrian economics and personal freedom. I have never voted for a third party but would not this round consider voting for either Mitt Romney or Newt Gingrich. It would be a nice option.

Besides the books of Judge Napolitano, there are two recent free state and libertarian books that some western governors are already using as texts: Rick Perry’s “Fed Up! Our Fight to Save America from Washington” and “Nullification” by Thomas Woods. I have spoken at a series of conferences which featured both Johnson and Woods and the energy and ideas presented brought a vitality that I’ve not seen elsewhere in my lifetime. It brings new karma arising. Much is to be done in this regard because most states are in truth not ready for self government and rely on federal government as the inmates of the cuckoo's nest rely on Big Nurse. The northeastern states; the oldest states and Vermont in particular, are most dependent. These are ideas for new people and new regions like Texas, California and Johnson’s New Mexico: The west is the best.

That is where the future of the free state lies. Those who have made the journey across the desert sense it, feel it, and Washington, D.C. is just too far away to tell them what to do.

Would a third party skew results. This time, in a race between Newt Gingrich and Barack Obama it makes little difference.

The late distinguished historian David Smiley used to say that when the United States moved to centralized government in the 1850s all of the major governments in the world followed suit. It may prove to have been the greatest disaster ever to befall the human race. Johnson, the Pauls, Napolitiano and company offer us an auspicious new beginning.

Sunday, December 04, 2011

‘Twilight’ of the Republicans; Jon Huntsman, Rick Perry to rise

By Bernie Quigley

For The Hill on 12/5/11

“In what all say is an ‘historic’ election, the GOP is fielding its B team while the A team sits in the locker room. Since when does that win the big games?” The Wall Street Journal’s Dan Henninger asked last week.

Because, like Bella Swan, they are lost in a dark trance and can’t wake up. Because they have with astonishing hubris considered the 2012 election to be a slam dunk, visualizing President Obama to be the second Jimmy Carter, who they followed sensationally with Ronald Reagan in 1981. And so they have been inclined to advance their weakest agents; Gingrich, Cain, Bachmann, just anybody, and appeal to angry birds, to the dissolute base and to those dumpster babies of archaic conservatism, red neck radio commentators.

Possibly the Republicans have spent one too many mornings at the bar in the smoky Legion hall. They bring forth first their most honorable, the war wounded. But they don’t seem to have noticed that the war is over some 70 years now and the Poles today beg Germany to save them. War is over. We won. Time to come home.

Technically, the Republicans are stuck in time, much as the South was until W.J. Cash published The Mind of the South in 1941 and changed self awareness.

But an 8.6 unemployment rate should change things.

“Is this [the 8.6 unemployment rate, down from 9] good enough to get Obama reelected?” Stuart Varney of Varney & Co. asks colleague Charles Payne.

“Moving in the right direction. Every Republican should be worried,” says Payne.

This is good for Republicans. They should have been worried six months ago.

This should be a wakeup call. The Republicans should begin to get serious now and send forth their best people. Rick Perry and Jon Huntsman should rise. Perry did very well in Huckabee’s forum this weekend and gave a great speech to the New Hampshire legislature last week. The Huntsman girls’ YouTube bits give a human touch and apparently Perry and Huntsman are the only candidates with a sense of humor. The others appear to have taken laugh lessons for public speaking. The Huntsman/Gingrich “Lincoln-Douglas” style debate matchup is one of the best ideas to come this campaign to date.

But it’s too late for Mitt, on the settee this week with H.W. Bush and his little Bichon Frise and Barbara, sheepishly seeking their endorsement in Texas. What kind of man would do that after the entire Bush Establishment (including Karl Rove, Kissinger, Barbara and the neocon apparatus) orchestrated the “anybody but Romney” campaign featuring Chris Christie, Mitch Daniels, Paul Ryan, John Thune and anybody but Romney?

Outlook: George Will’s Saturday column in the Washington Post, “Stop the coronation”: “Both Gingrich and Romney are too risky to anoint today” pretty much comes down to an endorsement of Jon Huntsman ( “. . . Republican for people who rather dislike Republicans, but his program is the most conservative.”). Gingrich, the "angry badger," will destroy Romney and then destroy himself as he always does.

Friday, December 02, 2011

Are Republicans “normal”?

By Bernie Quigley

For The Hill on 12/2/11

My daughter, who is not old enough to go to college, says that although she doesn’t really understand all of the issues, she likes President Obama because he seems “normal.” She says most of the Republican candidates “don’t seem normal.” It’s been my observation. I met Obama with my kids up here when he was running and instinctively liked him for that reason. It is why as things go today, Obama will likely win in a landslide. Jon Huntsman seems normal too and Republicans have no use for him whatsoever. Rick Perry, normal. Same.

Another thing, they like to fail. The Republican apparatus today is enormously proud of its failures (Gingrich). The Democrats, especially in Massachusetts, were like that for a long time after JFK. Took pride in impossible losers like George McGovern and The Duke. Considered losing with McGovern a victory. With Howard Dean as well. Likewise, they did not seem exactly “normal.” They seemed ideological, driven by ideas, even vengeance, abstracted and ungrounded. Like Newt Gingrich, Ron Paul, Michele Bachmann, Mitt Romney, Herman Cain and Rick Santorum today. Maybe it is a Reagan afterglow; there will never be another; we will wait devotedly for the return of the avatar.

Another Kennedy announces he may run in Massachusetts this week. Perhaps this one will be the returning master up here. Still they wait.

The Republicans also have ghost issues; things they support vehemently but don’t really want to happen. That gives them that out-of-body quality. Like balanced budget. They love to talk about that but they don’t want it to happen. It is something to wish for like next year in Jerusalem. They had a conniption fit last summer about wanting it and not wanting it.

And the small government thing. They don’t believe in small government. They believe in thin government. They want to remove organs of the federal government placed in there in our times because they didn’t put them there. But there has not been a moment’s discussion until the Tea Party about actual small governments which we call states. Now the Tea Party has forgotten it. And how would states work with a devolved federal government? Rule of thumb: Power will not devolve to new agencies like states and regional circles until those regions are fully formed and ready to receive it. Was that way when Germany and England removed from Rome and when the colonies removed from England. And you never really remove; you mainly shift certain responsibilities to more appropriate realms as the greater convention matures.

So all small government talk amounts to antithetical posturing. You will get a lot of that in the Gingrich administration’s “idea factory.” He’s a regular bee hive of ideas.

Texas is probably the only state ready for the shifting of authority from central government to regional. So when Governor Rick Perry says he is an outsider, he really is. Pundits who say he has spent a long time in government because he was governor of Texas miss the central idea: He has spent a long time in SMALL GOVERNMENT. And that is why he brings a successful model of regional development and governance for the 21st century.

We could have, should have, had that back here in New England a hundred and fifty years ago but defaulted to governance by New York and Washington. Elizabeth Warren, Okie grandmother, briefly brought us an auspicious new beginning. But again we default back to a Kennedy family member. ‘Twas ever thus.

Thursday, December 01, 2011

The end of the Smoke-Filled Rooms?

By Bernie Quigley

For The Hill on 12/1/11

“In what all say is an ‘historic’ election, the GOP is fielding its B team while the A team sits in the locker room. Since when does that win the big games?” writes The Wall Street Journal’s talented Daniel Henninger. And he overheard mumbling of late: "Maybe it's time to bring back the smoke-filled rooms."

This was the nearly mythical system of selection in which party leaders and party bosses gathered over cigars, bourbon and branch to pick a candidate "who could win," he tells. “The most famous smoke-filled room pick was William McKinley, anointed for the 1896 election by Ohio kingmaker Mark Hanna (though in fact Hanna got McKinley nominated over the opposition of GOP party bosses).”

No, it persisted longer. When Jack Kennedy first decided to run for office in Massachusetts he presented himself to three prominent Boston Irishmen who pretty much ran Boston. One I knew well; old school . . . a drink in the right hand at any time of day, a cigar in the other, high starched collar and a diamond pin in his tie, a new grey Cadillac every two years. When Kennedy told them he intended to run for office and he needed 16,000 signatures to enter, one of the burghers said they would have them on his desk in the morning. Kennedy said, no you actually have to go out and get people to sign. Which they did. First time in Boston. But there was never any question that Jack would get the job. It was more of an appointment, with a little public performance thrown in of people on the street signing papers. But it was long decided elsewhere that Jack would be their man.

This was the politics of smoke-filled rooms; situations decided by the traditional association of money and men. But the worst-case was the most recent, the election of our very worst president, George W. Bush. This was decided before he was even born.

And that is where all the trouble comes this time around. Both parties have lost the atavistic connection to their Boston families, the Kennedys and the Lodges, playing out today in its end game now with Obama, keeper of the Kennedy dog, and the heartfelt yearning for Jeb Bush. These are birth pains. America is being born.

The level of corruption in the Kennedy mystique, personal and professional, was high and unprecedented in America. The level of professional corruption in the George W. Bush administration was astonishing and immoral. And as per the B team Henninger mentions; Cain, Gingrich come to mind, we have become acclimated to it.

Family politics devolves a republic or even a democracy to an empire by lowering the political dialog to pabulum. Did Sarah Palin mistakenly attribute a quote? Did Rick Perry get the voting age wrong in New Hampshire? The people default to trusting a political family – Hapsburg, Papandreou, Kennedy, Clinton, Bush - because they do not trust themselves or maybe because they no longer care and they find it easy. Then those who desire the rigors of a republican government should separate from them.

If regions want a significant family to identify culturally and spiritually with as England does and Israel will do again in my children’s lifetime, they should appoint a queen and leave governance to an elected prime minister. It works in Canada.