Mandeville, LA – Exclusive Transcript – What have we done with our birthright? We’ve squandered it. We’re told to hold hands around trees and sing “Kumbaya” songs and the Coke song and what have you and we’re all in this together and we can’t ever break apart, can’t ever dissolve this part of that and this agency or that tax or this law or that program can’t ever be ended because it benefits all of us. It doesn’t benefit all of us. A social safety net doesn’t benefit any of us. If only some of us have to pay for it, then we all mightily pay in the end. We pay the price of liberty.
Begin Mike Church Show Transcript
Mike: I don’t think there’s any way to get around the question, which I posed to you, is this a rejection of the communitarian ideal or is this a reform of the communitarian ideal? I think that the arc of history is going to require that this is a rejection of the communitarian ideal, because I don’t think that the compulsive idea of public this and public that was ever part of the original republic that not only did the founding generation live in, but that almost all inhabitants of this country lived in since Jamestown was settled. People seem to forget there was 160 years of history before the first shot was fired at Lexington and Concord in 1775. None of those events, none of that history suggests that there ever was a compulsory communitarian or public or a force-fed acceptance of the idea of public funding for anything. I think what you saw in Wisconsin — you remember banshee woman, AG?
AG: Hard to forget.
Mike: Russ, did you ever hear me play banshee woman?
Russ: Yes, I have.
Mike: We have to revisit this. If you’re a new listener, you’re going to want this on your phone. You got to get this.
Female: We’re doing this for the kids. The unions are the people who brought us a weekend and an eight-hour workday. If we don’t do this now, our children will not have a weekend, an eight-hour workday or collective bargaining rights. This is for the kids!
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Mike: That woman, she is a public school teacher in the Wisconsin public school system, banshee woman. She’s actually correct about the — I’ve brought this up before about the whole weekend thing. It’s just one of the axioms now, or one of the adages, of the commonality of the American experience now that you have a weekend. This is a fairly new invention. Most people don’t realize this. The weekend was basically the brainchild of the American Socialist Party. Did you know that, Russ?
Russ: You know, Mike, it seems to me all this amounts to is a rejection of the early days of — Jefferson was characterized as a communitarian, but in a different sense. It wasn’t a forced, political, indoctrinated community that he advocated. It was a voluntary, how to get along with your neighbor basically. This has all been morphed over the last 150 years via the various so-called progressive movements. They latch onto these terms because the squishy middle, as a lot of people refer to them, it has appeal to them. They know something is wrong. They see it every night in their news, but they don’t know what it is.
Mike: You’ve stumbled — no, you haven’t stumbled upon it. It sounds to me like you have fastidiously studied it and are enunciating it. AG has sent me the column now. This is from Daniel Henninger, January 21, 2010. “The Fall of the House of Kennedy” is the title, “The battle over who defines the work and institutions that make a nation thrive and grow.” What Henninger writes here, in part, is:
The revolt against the machine began with voters’ 2006 ouster of the Republican majority in Congress for making a mockery of fiscal rectitude. An angry electorate then swept Barack Obama into office. Now Mr. Obama is saying voters elected him on the same wave of anger that elected Scott Brown. Sorry, but Messrs. Obama and Brown are not surfing in the same political ocean. The central battle in our time is over political primacy. It is a competition between the public sector and the private sector over who defines the work and the institutions that make a nation thrive and grow.
Mike: Now I’m going to say to you that Henninger, because I believe he to be a brilliant writer, but I also believe him to be a nationalist and an imperialist at the same time. We can talk about that at a different time. I’m also going to say to you that the seed that has long been dormant has had water thrown on it and has germinated. That is the seed of republicanism. Again, that’s why I think the term republican, even if it’s not as I have spelled it out, not with a capital ‘R,’ with a little ‘r,’ which basically means local control over local means. Republicanism, with almost every machination, and there are a few, and with almost every effort, resists the urge to consolidate. Consolidation would mean, if you are a little ‘r’ republican — and the T-shirt and the bumper sticker say “[r]epublican: if you have to ask, you’re part of the problem” — that you reject this jingoistic “I heard somebody else say it, so it must be a good idea,” this jingoistic adoration of, this false god of nationalism.
It never ceases to both amaze and shock me at the same time that the same American people, the same American public that were so mortified and horrified over national soviet communism and the rise of national communism in China and the rise of national communism in Cuba, so much so that we were ready to go to a nuclear war over it in the Cuban missile crisis, has over the course of time, since the great war of the 1940’s, has decided that we are going to give it the old college try and that we can be the world’s great next nationalist. There’s just something inherently suspicious, I think, about the urge to turn to nationalism as opposed to individualism. Individualism is what brought people to these shores. It’s what made this country and those that settled it so vibrant and so unlike those that had settled and become in a stasis in the rest of the world. We were the fortunate heirs of this.
What have we done with our birthright? We’ve squandered it. We’re told to hold hands around trees and sing “Kumbaya” songs and the Coke song and what have you and we’re all in this together and we can’t ever break apart, can’t ever dissolve this part of that and this agency or that tax or this law or that program can’t ever be ended because it benefits all of us. It doesn’t benefit all of us. A social safety net doesn’t benefit any of us. If only some of us have to pay for it, then we all mightily pay in the end. We pay the price of liberty.
End Mike Church Show Transcript