Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Everything You Need to Know About Politics … You Learned From Being a Mom.

The Deadly Fallacy of Fairness

If you’re a mom, it’s likely that you’ve fallen head first into the occasional fairness trap.  It all starts out so nice … everyone gets their fair share!  Until the minute details of the negotiation derail the process, fighting ensues and the whole thing dissolves in tantrum and tears.  

You see, Mimi doesn’t care that the cookie cake slices are EXACTLY the same size because Jack’s slice has a flower on it and she wants the flower.  And Ted could care less about the damn flower – he wanted the crust piece.  And on and on until you actually hear yourself conjuring up your mother’s favorite line:

“Life isn’t fair!  It’ll never be fair! So get over it and eat your damned cookie!”

And there it is.  A life lesson that we all learn at age four and acknowledge as truth. The world is actually a completely, unfair place.  This has been a truth throughout human history regardless of era, culture, geography or government system.  You may “even the playing field” as best you can but at the end of the day even the nature of our birth is unfair!  Some are tall, some are short.  Some are geniuses others, not so much.  Some are beautiful and others are homely.  Some born wealthy, some impoverished.  Some are friendly, others cranky. I could go on. 

Thomas Jefferson wrote that “all men are created equal”.  But he never implied that the government should be empowered to force them all to have equal amounts of stuff.  Or that every man had equal talents and abilities.  That would have been absurd!  He meant that each life was equally valuable and had equal protection under the law.  

Amazingly … this kindergarten level truth seems to be incomprehensible to our modern day politicians and bureaucrats, who fancy themselves some kind of Houdini – who can magically conjure up an American Utopia where everyone ‘gets their fair share’ and has ‘complete wage equality’.  The promises are grand.  And we believe they can deliver.

But they can’t deliver. Because if it doesn’t work at my kitchen table with a cookie cake, it certainly can’t work in a country of 300 million, with the largest, most complex economy in the world.  It’s actually impossible for an elite few in Washington, DC to EVER deliver even a modicum of fairness. And while falling into the fairness trap is annoying as mom, it’s a deadly for a nation. 

Karl Marx promised a Communist Utopia to the Russians “from each according to his ability, to each according to his need” and equal distribution of goods and services for the people. When his plan was implemented by Stalin it resulted in forced famines, food shortages, economic collapse, purges, forced displacements, imprisonment in labor camps and massacres. 

All told, Russia lost 40 million souls during Stalin’s Communist reign because the people were lured by the promise of false utopia and a ‘fair share”.  They surrendered liberty for perceived equality.

Socialism didn’t fare much better.  Hitler’s National Socialist Party promised the Germans the same type of ‘social and economic justice’ in the early 1930’s.  Total government control of business, major industries, healthcare, education and religion would usher Nazi Germany to the Promised Land.

Germany’s experiment with socialism cost the world 11 millions souls who perished in concentration camps.  Their highly efficient, national ‘health care system’ featured the T4 Euthanasia program responsible for the injection deaths of 200,000 disabled children and elderly.   

We are being sold these tired, failed ideals today.  Only they’re repackaged as ‘economic justice’ and  ‘income equality’. Every time we empower the government to be the arbiter of fair share we are giving up our liberty, independence and freedom to pursue happiness as we see fit. 

Isn’t it interesting that we give politicians (who rank between used car salesmen and blood sucking lawyers in terms of trustworthiness) so much power to take our hard earned money and redistribute it to others?  We trust them to control our healthcare and education?  Do we really believe they won’t simply enrich themselves, enrich their cronies and consolidate power at the expense of our liberty and prosperity? 

The thing is … Liberty might be messy. And it’s not always fair.  But that’s OK for me.  I know enough about history to know that when a politician promises fairness they are really only looking to get elected.  And with too much power and control, governments become downright dangerous.  I’d rather have income inequality than tyranny.

And, I actually don’t mind that some people are richer than I.  Because in addition to telling me that life is never fair, my Mom also told me that money can never buy happiness!

Am I at WAR?!

I’ve been told that there is a War Against Women.  Seriously. Beyonce and Lena Dunham told me so. When I watch Good Morning America, The View or any mainstream media venue I am informed that there is a battle raging to rid me of my reproductive rights and screw me out of fair pay.  And by the way I’d better be ‘Ready For Hillary’, cause if I’m not – I clearly hate women. 

The perpetrators of this War Against Women? Well the list is long … Society, Men, Conservatives, Christians, Republicans, The Patriarchy, Stay at Home Moms, Sarah Palin and anyone who doesn’t want to pay for my condoms. 

They tell me that if this War Against Women is lost then I will go back to being barefoot and pregnant, subjugated and unable to ‘get mine in a Man’s World’. They tell me to be outraged by studies that ‘prove’ men still make more than women for the same job. (Which they don’t)

They tell me to divide women into categories like ‘Working Women” and ‘Stay At Home Moms’ and then tell me to judge the ‘Stay At Homes’ as never working a day in their lives.  They tell me that Real Feminists must be pro choice.  Real Feminists must be Democrats.  Real Feminists must support gay marriage.  Real Feminists must support Big Daddy Government. Real Feminists must vote for Hillary Clinton.

I’m sick of being told that I hate women because I don’t fall in lockstep with the political platform of the Democrat Party.  I’m not ready for Hillary.  Not because she is a woman but because I disagree with her world view.  I don’t believe in top down, autocratic government control of any aspect of my life.  I like small government, and local control and LOTS of personal liberty. 

So I reject the tired old notion that Democrats are the only party that represents women.  Because it is simply not true.  I have plenty of criticism for Republicans but the truth is that Democrats are not talking about the issues that I care about.  All they want to talk about is birth control.  And they just assume that women will always vote for them.

The political class in Washington, DC is not addressing the concerns of women today.  Women are worried about a lot more than their ‘reproductive health’ and it is demeaning and dismissive to assume that we only vote with our ovaries.  So what are women really worried about today? 

Energy prices skyrocketing in the past 4 years.
Grocery prices continually rising with no end in sight.
Insurance rates doubling and the loss of their doctor (who they thought they could keep)
Local schools being hijacked by the federal government and massive corporations.

They are worried that the dollar just doesn’t seem to go as far as it used to.
They are worried that their kids won’t be able to afford the 300% hike in college tuition.
They are worried that college won’t even prepare their kids for the real world.
They are worried that they can’t trust the media, or the government, or big businesses.
They are worried that they can’t trust “experts” or “studies” anymore because there are so many of them and they always seem to be wrong, eventually.
They are worried that their hard earned tax dollars are being wasted on welfare.  Corporate AND Personal.

They worry that huge corporations and big government politicians seem to be in bed together.
That power is being centralized quickly and without their consent.
That Democrats and Republicans seem to be the same.
That government seems to be the only thing in America that is growing.
That government is too big, out of control and unresponsive to the American People. 

They are worried that their children will never experience the liberty and prosperity that past generations have and that the American Dream will not be a reality for their children and grandchildren.  There is a ‘War on Liberty’ and it is much bigger and more dangerous than any ‘War on Women’.

I suspect that the ‘War on Women’ is just a slick marketing tool to scare women into voting for Democrats.  I think we should stop with the labels and the scare tactics and take a fresh look at our politicians in Washington, DC.  Neither party is reforming government.  Or taking on the corruption.  But we should stop giving Democrats a pass and start holding them accountable for the problems they’ve created. 

Hillary doesn’t automatically get my vote because she’s a girl.  I want new leadership that will reform Washington, DC and bust up the corrupt power structures that have put our children’s future in jeopardy. 

Monday, December 9, 2013

A Holiday Tour of My Home!

A Holiday Tour of My Home!

My budget this year for decorations was ... wait for it ... ZERO!!

Yes, the hubby and I decided to shave unnecessary expenses to avoid the hangover credit card bill in January.  So I went to work with what I had in the house and was able to add a few personal touches that were DIRT CHEAP!!

So I armed myself with a roll of burlap, festive looking wine & liquor bottles and a can of fake snow.  Hers's what I came up with ...

Monday, November 25, 2013

Are We Really Free? Why Free Markets are ESSENTIAL to Free People.

Free Markets are born out of Free People.  If we want to remain free people we must embrace free markets.  Why is that?

Well, what does it mean to be a free human being?  Our founders gave us a few ideas but you can boil it down to our RIGHT to private property.  What is private property?

Private Property
Physical Property (land & possessions)
The Body Property (your physical being and labor)
Property of the Mind (your intelligence, your beliefs, your conscience or religion)

Any attempt by government to control our Physical, Body or Mind Property is an erosion of our natural right to private property.  If we want to be truly free than we must limit the ability of a central authority to dictate how we are to make use of our private property.  Otherwise … at some point we lose our freedom and become slaves.

So imagine a bunch of free people running around town not being manipulated, forced or coerced by a government entity regarding their private property – how does society interact?  Well we certainly don’t sit in caves and rock back in forth all day!  We have dreams, desires, ambitions, physical needs and wants.  In addition we have a immediate, central driving ambition ...the survival instinct.  We MUST put a roof over our heads and feed ourselves and our families in order to survive.

So out of free men and their desire to not only survive but THRIVE - will emerge the free exchange of each man’s private property.  We work to survive and we TRADE our skills to live better and happier!  Some people excel at literature and the arts, others are great at baking or entertaining, some love math and science.  And because most people would rather spend their days doing the things they love and are interested in they specialize in the areas that they excel! 

Therefore … you will eventually have free men trading their private property in order to survive and pursue happiness with their lives.

So what do they trade?

Free Market Trade
Can exchange physical property … buying or selling land or goods
Can exchange body property … voluntary exchange of labor for cash/goods
Can exchange mind property … voluntary exchange of creativity, ingenuity or innovation

Despite what you may have learned in college humanities ... free markets are NOT huge corporations, greedy investors, shady derivative markets or crony capitalists.  They are very simply the conditions that exist when free men voluntarily exchange their private property.  Free markets are the ONLY natural extension of free men. 

Now that doesn't mean that you don’t have certain laws and systems that can be instituted by a community of people to protect the right of men to freely trade their private property.  Or that free markets cannot be corrupted with liars, cheaters and manipulators.  But the “problems” of a free market are not inherent in the system.  They are the problems (greed, lust for power, hatred or jealousy) that have plagued the world since the beginning of time.

Understanding the necessity of some, very limited government involvement in the area of trade we must always acknowledge that government manipulations and invasions in the free market are always at the expense of our personal freedoms.  The act of giving public funds to one free citizen that is deemed to be poor, must always involve the confiscation of private property from another free citizen. 

We can certainly debate whether or not governments should be empowered to confiscate the private property of its citizens for "public welfare".  However, we must all acknowledge the fact that any government involvement or attempt to control/manipulate the free markets represents an erosion of our natural rights & freedoms.  

Let's always consider that when we empower our government to engage in charity!

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Fred Upton Should Read This

Dear Mr. President, Diane Feinstein, Mary Landrieu, Kay Hagan and any other Democrat in a swing state,

Right now you are calling for a “fix” to the Obamacare Problem.  Some of you are clamoring for a congressional bill to reinstate the health insurance of 5 million Americans.   

Your ideas are a JOKE.

Forget the fact that you CAN’T reinstate health insurance plans that are illegal under the ObamaCare Law.  The plans are gone.  In addition – it is unfair and unreasonable for you to brazenly take private insurance companies and their customers on another unpredictable and unfair roller coaster ride.

The Republicans are as opposed to Obamacare as they were the fateful day it passed and they would be dishonest and disingenuous if they lifted a finger to help you out of this mess that you created for yourselves.  And if you think the Republicans are going to aid and abet you in perpetrating this crime against Americans or help President Obama FIX this monstrosity called Obamacare you are sadly mistaken.

The reason that Republicans won’t help you is that ObamaCare hurts Americans. 

It damages the economy, it kills jobs and it steals hard earned income from every taxpaying citizen.  The fact is Republicans believe that this law is the biggest mistake that ever happened in Washington DC.  And it has had devastating effect on millions of Americans.

More importantly … Republicans won’t bail you out of this one because you DON’T DESERVE IT.

You have lost all credibility with American People.

You lied hundreds of times when you said we could keep our health care plans and our doctors.
You lied when promised Americans that their healthcare costs would go DOWN by $2500 per year.
You KNEW that 5 million Americans would lose their health care when the private mandate set in.
You NOW know that as many as 50 to 100 Million MORE Americans will lose their healthcare when the employer mandates set in.
You refused to compromise or work with Republicans for Health Care Reform in 2009.
You crafted a BILL that was universally opposed by Republicans but you didn’t care.
You used procedural tricks, PORK kickbacks and deception to pass Obamacare at midnight on Christmas Eve in the House of Representatives.
Then you manipulated the rules of the Senate after Scott Brown was elected in Massachusetts to block Obamacare.
You ignored the will of the American People who have NEVER supported Obamacare as a majority.
You passed ObamaCare without reading it.
Let me say that again … You passed The Affordable Care Act without READING IT!
One more time … You voted YES on a 2,000 page MegaBill WITHOUT READING THE DAMN BILL!
You ignored President Obama when he issued multiple executive orders changing the LAW … which was illegal and unconstitutional.
You ignored President Obama when he issued multiple executive orders to exempt his cronies in the unions and in the corporations that donated to his campaigns.
You exempted yourself, your staff and Washington DC cronies from ObamaCare while shoving it down the throat of every single American Citizen.
You refused to even meet with Ted Cruz,  Mike Lee or House Republicans 5 weeks ago when they were desperately trying to fix this. 
You refused to defund, delay or even marginally change Obamacare. 
You said the words “We will not compromise” and “I will not compromise” more times than one can remember.
You demonized anyone who tried to fix or change Obamacare and painted them as radicals, haters, extremists, hostage takers and terrorists.
And amazingly … You managed to fail miserably and spectacularly at creating a simple website with 3 years lead time and 600 million taxpayer dollars.
That is $600,000,000 taxpayer dollars to create a website.  A WEBSITE!

And you want the American People to trust you to run healthcare?

The answer is no.  NO!

You don’t get a bailout.  You don’t get a second chance.  Not from the Republicans and not from the American People. You have failed in every sense of the word.  You colossal failures will have ripple effects of pain on Americans for years to come.  The damage you have left in your wake will take many years to fix.

You plan sucked.  It didn’t work. And the only way to FIX IT is to REPEAL the damn thing. 

PERIOD.  (to quote Obama)

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Fashion & Politics

I’ve decided to rename this blog ‘Fashion & Politics’.  Why?

Well first the obvious reason, I’m a chick and I love clothes and fashion.  Shopping, primping, make-up, hair and a nice mani/pedi now and then with the gals. 

And I like taking selfies of my outfits. What can I say?

I’m also obsessed with politics, current events, government, culture and debate.  I always have been … it’s a passion built into my nature and my soul for as long as I can remember.

So I have this crazy notion that fashion and politics are interrelated

But how possibly can you marry fashion and politics?  They seem to occupy completely opposite ends of the spectrum.  And while fashion occasionally delves into politics (think Kirsten Gillibrand featured in Vogue)… politics rarely delves into fashion (think Hillary Clinton’s pantsuits).

In fact, fashion among Republican politicians is about as rare as the spotted owl. The last (and only) Republican woman grudgingly applauded for her fashion sense was Nancy Regan.  And when the fashionable set isn’t completely ignoring Republican women, they devolve into complete ‘Mean Girl’ territory.   Who can forget the twin Newsweek covers of Michelle Bachmann looking like a wild eyed lunatic and Sarah Palin in spandex lollipops?

The folks at Newsweek were total jerks … but the “hip” factor does seem elusive to many Republicans.

Hollywood, the media and pop culture have seemingly rejected Conservatism and the GOP.  And the truth is that Republicans do have a problem.  They seem old, out of style and curmudgeony. They are not appealing to younger generations. They are perceived as out-of-touch, antiquated and out of ideas.  The GOP needs to appeal to new voters.  But gaining favor among the young and cool does not necessarily mean changing your core values.  It might just mean tweaking your logo.

I’ve worked in advertising & marketing for ten years.  As an advertising executive I’ve sold everything from radio to billboards to network television.  I’ve helped hundreds of clients write and produce advertising campaigns.  If I’ve learned anything from this experience it is this:

Image. Matters. 

The first impression is vitally important and the image you portray can help you get your foot in the door and break down barriers.  Is image the most important thing?  Absolutely, positively NO!  A bad product will have trouble selling regardless of how fancy the packaging.  Bad ideas, bad policies and a lackluster track record won’t be fixed with a smart outfit and cool demeanor.  (Actually, I  take that back.  It actually worked for Obama.)

But thankfully image is one of the easiest things to tweak without compromising core values.

Republicans want to appeal to younger voters.  Progressive consultants are telling them that to achieve that, they must change who they are and everything they believe in.  They must approve of gay marriage, abandon the abortion issue, support amnesty and embrace social welfare programs to reach these elusive young voters. This is the only way to move into the 21st Century and be relevant.
That advice is dumb. 

This is like telling Coca Cola to change their famous recipe to appeal to Millenials.  It’s like telling Colonel Sanders to add a spice or two to his fried chicken.  Every marketing expert and advertising guru knows that the legends in product marketing never mess with the original … they just TWEAK the packaging!

Republicans don’t need to change their core values in order to appeal to younger generations.  They just need a good image overhaul and new creative language that effectively articulates conservatism to the younger set.  They need to identify what draws Millenials to Libertarianism and EMBRACE IT! 

Republicans actually have an amazing marketing opportunity.  They can excite their conservative base and introduce limited government to a whole new generation of young voters who are open and receptive to Libertarian values.  The Millennials are ripe for the picking and if Republicans were smart they would seize this moment and tailor their message to these new voters.

And at the end of the day … maybe consider a few makeovers?  After all … it is infinitely easier to tweak your wardrobe, hair and language than to sacrifice everything you believe in.