This Is Obama’s Legacy, and He Knows It

On Tuesday, January 10th, 2017, Barrack Obama delivered his farewell address in the city of Chicago. The address served as a way for Obama to proclaim that he will be forever remembered and admired because of his great legacy, one that includes: the amelioration of our civil society, the expansion of the economy, the progress towards world peace, and the precedent for transparency. This, however, is merely the result of his proclivity for self-aggrandizement. Obama’s declaration that his administration is one of success is simply a false narrative. His administration has been one dedicated to: the performance of unscrupulous actions, the ignorance of reality, and the rejection of veracity. His great legacy will not be full of hope, progress, and change. Instead, it will be marked with lies, corruption, and failure.

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care is a prime example of this. The setup of the policy was misguided, for its success was contingent on the amount of people that would sign up for health insurance. This was to be achieved through the government’s mandate that the people must acquire health insurance. Despite the efforts of this mandate, which was unconstitutional in its very nature, not enough people signed up for health insurance. As a result, insurance premiums rose significantly, which is something that will continue. More so, Obama claimed that families could keep the doctors of their choice under the healthcare policy, which actually turned out to be false.

Obama expanded the size of the government significantly during his administration, which resulted in an existential increase in the overall level of debt. Obama’s stimulus package, which was a response to the financial crisis, contributed to this as well. The overall economy under the Obama administration experienced some of the slowest growth this country has seen. Obama’s claims that the unemployment rate has decreased are true. But, when looked at in conjunction with the significant decrease in the labor force participation rate it is apparent why the unemployment rate has actually gone down. These are a result of the enhanced business regulations made by the Obama administration.

Obama’s claims of success in regards to foreign relations are fatuous in nature as well. He pulled the troops before the Middle East could be stable enough to thrive on its own, and as a result it fell into chaos. ISIS was also able to grow significantly once the troops left the area. The administration downplayed the cruel nature of Bashar al-Assad as well, and once the dictator started to attack his own people, the administration refused to provide sufficient military support. Obama did nothing to stop the advancement of Russian military forces into the Crimean Peninsula of Ukraine, as well as their infiltration in the Syrian conflict. The Iranian Nuclear Deal that his administration supported provided Iran, a country at odds with western civilization, with the capacity to develop nuclear weapons in the near future. Lastly, Obama’s claim that no terrorist attack has taken place in our country that was orchestrated by a terrorist organization overseas was simply a way for him to narrow down an issue so much that it makes him appear to be successful. Radical Islamic terror has grown significantly in the world under Obama’s watch. This is a result of his refusal to properly accredit ISIS-inspired attacks to radical Islam, as well as his inability to propose rational policies to combat them.

The notion that Obama’s administration was honest and competent is also false. Obama lied about the true nature of the Benghazi incident and Hillary Clinton’s private email server. He utilized executive orders as a way to go around congress and implement whatever policies suited his own interests, such as when he wrongfully declared that five million illegal immigrants would be protected from deportation. He also used the departments and agencies of the executive branch, such as the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Justice, in order to usurp his Constitutionally provided powers.

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Most Millennials Don’t Identify With a Political Party

28 percent of millennials (18-33) identify as Democrats, 18 percent as Republicans, and 48 percent identify as independents, according to the Pew Research Center.

There is a notion that one’s political party affiliation must completely represent their ideological inclinations. The conversations held about politics in our society involve such questions as, “are you a Democrat or Republican?”. Polling research, such as that conducted by news organizations and academic institutions, often focuses on organizing their subjects into being only Democrats or Republicans. During the political campaign season, candidates claim that their unyielding sense of support for their political party makes them virtuous, and state that this is a reason why the people should vote for them. Our country has seemingly established a tradition that the people must define themselves by the political party they align themselves with. This tradition has resulted in the degradation of both individual autonomy and self veneration.

Why political parties exist

The proper functionality of political parties has been misconstrued. Political parties exist to provide individuals the opportunity to come together for the advancement of particular ideals they agree upon. Political parties serve as the embodiment of various philosophies. They do not exist for the purpose of construing the intellectual and moral character of its followers, nor do they remain stagnant over the course of history. They are simply the product of a society’s assemblage of particular ideals. Political parties either change or die out completely in response to various political movements that occur at different points in time.

The last statement accurately describes the political party landscape within our nation. Our country was founded with no political party system in existence. This precedent did not last long, as the Federalist Party was created for the purpose of advancing the authority of the federal government, as well the freedoms of large scale businesses. The Democratic-Republican Party came next, and it advocated both a smaller government and an agrarian-like economy. At the time, the citizens of the nation defined themselves by these political parties, and they assumed that the parties would be everlasting. This would prove to be a fallacy of contemplation, as both the Democratic-Republican and Federalist Parties eventually faded into obscurity.

As the preferred ideals of the masses changed, the Democratic and Whig Parties were established. The people at the time identified themselves by the existence of the Whig and Democratic Parties, and they assumed that the parties would remain prosperous. But, the nature of the political party system changed yet again. The Whig Party eventually dissolved, and the Republican Party took its place. The Republican and Democratic Parties then represented the political party system.

Rand Paul taking picture with millennials.
Rand Paul taking picture with millennials.

Political parties are not everlasting

While the Republican and Democratic Parties have endured within our political party system for quite some time, this does not mean they will be everlasting. If our nation’s history tells us anything, it is that the nature of political parties necessitates change. The physical existence of the parties themselves may change, or the ideological makeup of the parties may be altered in response to social movements. The existence of both the Republican and Democratic Parties is something that may or may not last in the future.

The ideological makeup of the parties is something that has already changed on many occasions. The Republican Party was originally established for the advancement of abolishing slavery within the nation. It began with a sense of progressivism, for it established a platform that involved the advancement of both the size and responsibilities of the federal government. The party’s identity of big government favoritism was abandoned for conservatism during the 1980’s. This remained precedent until our recent election cycle, in which the Republican Party altered its previously held sense of conservatism for nationalism and populism instead.

The Democratic Party started as a party dedicated to the preservation of slavery, as well as the promotion of states’ rights. During the 1960’s, progressive liberalism became embedded within the beliefs of the Democratic Party, something that grew until it com—pletely overtook the identity of the party. Just like the Republican Party, our recent election cycle altered the ideological tradition of the Democratic Party. The party has shifted away from progressive liberalism, and it has adopted a true sense of governmental socialism.

Ideas stay the same but parties will change

What all of this shows is that political parties cannot be used as a way to personify the human condition. The ideological identity of political parties depends on the ever-changing preferences of the people. More so, these preferences can result in the abandonment of the political parties themselves, as well as the creation of new ones. The true intellectual principles of humanity, however, do not rely on the preferences of the people, and they are not subject to abandonment or change. Philosophies in their purest form, like: communism, progressivism, and conservatism, will not change. The only thing that changes is society’s predilection for these ideals through its utilization of political parties.

Calvin Coolidge: A Forgotten Conservative Icon

The adoration of political figures is a commonplace tradition amongst both sides of the political spectrum. This sense of reverence for significant figures within our nation’s history is not to the extent of idolatry. Instead, it is the avocation of influential individuals, those who are believed to embody the true meaning behind particular political ideologies. For the political left, Woodrow Wilson and Franklin D. Roosevelt are just a few of the individuals they look to for the promotion of social liberalism and governmental progressivism. The political right often venerates the service of Barry Goldwater, or the presidencies of both Abraham Lincoln and Ronald Reagan. These individuals epitomized constitutional conservatism, and they displayed the proper respect that all politicians should have for our foundational values.

But, there is another person who personifies these traits as well, an individual who is often ignored in regards to our nation’s history just as much as he is forgotten amongst the majority of the political right.

Calvin Coolidge was a Republican lawyer from Vermont. His political career began when he rose through the rankings of Massachusetts state politics to become the governor of the state. Coolidge eventually moved away from state politics in favor of national politics. He was elected as the twenty-ninth Vice President of the United States, where he served alongside President Warren G. Harding from 1921 to 1923. In 1923, Warren G. Harding died unexpectedly while in office, and Coolidge was sworn in as the President for the remainder of the term. He was re-elected in the 1924 presidential election, and he served until 1929.

Republican president Calvin Coolidge for president campaign sign

Calvin Coolidge’s tenure in office not only serves as an advancement for proper constitutional conservatism and classic economic theory, but it also represents how successful these ideologies can be when applied in policy. He spent a majority of his first term rejuvenating a sense of trust and sincerity in the executive branch that was depleted as a result of Warren G Harding’s tenure. In a way, he effectively “drained the swamp”, as he removed the corrupt members of the presidential cabinet and replaced them with men of credibility. In regards to legislation, he signed into law the Immigration Act, a bill designed to limit the seemingly uncontrollable levels of immigration that were occurring at the time. He also signed into law the Revenue Act of 1924, a bill that reduced the top marginal tax rates, as well as the overall levels of the personal income tax rates.

Coolidge’s second term in office can be described as an era of small government.

He spent a majority of his time trying to restore the concepts of federalism and constitutional authority. He cut down on unnecessary federal spending: Coolidge spent countless hours in his office going over the details of the budget, cutting anything unnecessary and unconstitutional. He limited the involvement of the federal government in regards to private businesses and state governments by appointing commissioners to the Federal Trade Commission and the Interstate Commerce Commission who would not try to abuse their powers and issue unscrupulous regulatory practices. He also reduced the overall federal debt by signing into law the Revenue Acts of 1926 and 1928. In fact, federal spending was so low during Coolidge’s tenure that about one-fourth of the federal debt was retired. The state and local governments grew at such a significant rate that their annual budget exceeded that of the federal government in 1927.

The economic policies imposed by Coolidge promoted laissez-faire ideals, which is why there was a significant level of economic growth during his administration. His reduction in the consumer income tax rates, as well as his reduction in the level of the government’s regulatory control allowed the consumers and private businesses to have a renewed sense of freedom. Coolidge continuously stayed dedicated to the notion that a free economy is the best economy. For example, he rejected the attempts of Congress to pass legislation that would impose subsidies for farmers. These bills would have basically given the government the power to purchase excess crops from farmers in order to sell at lower prices. Coolidge understood that these policies would degrade the process of natural selection in the economy by providing an unfair advantage for farmers, which would result in the depletion of quality and efficient crops for the American consumers. He also recognized that the policies would enhance the involvement of the federal government in the economy, which was something that actually needed to be prevented.

So, the question is, why should we care about a guy in a top hat from the 20’s? Calvin Coolidge was not the perfect president, nor was his administration free of flaws. But, he was a man that understood the true purpose of constitutional conservatism and classic economics, which is the advancement of our inalienable rights and civic freedoms. More so, he was able to successfully act upon these ideals, as his policies: reduced the size of the federal government, decreased the high levels of government spending, and imposed economic growth, and the American people loved him for it. When Coolidge announced that he would not seek reelection, his successor, Herbert Hoover, won election by promising to continue the policies of President Coolidge (unfortunately, Hoover lied). Calvin Coolidge was a man who is glossed over in American history today. His administration was one that should be given more credibility by historians, and it was one that should be commended by the members of the political right.

5 Absurd College Courses Offered by Public Universities

Many people of the world know that public universities in America serve as institutions for political leftism and intellectual incompetence. Oftentimes, one will hear stories in the news and in the media about how particular universities offer radical courses that solely exist to reflect what has now become this stereotype. But, how widespread is this characteristic amongst the colleges in the country? In order to solve this question, I decided to look at a variety of courses offered by state-funded public universities across the U.S. I compiled a list of a few courses that I happened to find in my research; ones that I believe show just how credible these institutions are.

  1. “EcoFeminism” – The College of New Jersey, School of Humanities & Social Sciences, Department of Women’s and Gender Studies

According to the university’s course catalog, this course instructs its’ students on the idea that both women and nature are linked due to their oppression at the hands of dominating males in American society. So, if students at the College of New Jersey would like to obtain the ability to criticize society for using nature, and somehow dominating women as well, then this is a class worth taking.

 

  1. “Pornography and Culture” – The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Communications Studies

This course teaches students about the historical, legal, and social implications of the pornography industry in the world. This is clearly an aspect of society that deserves extensive academic research at the expense of North Carolina’s taxpayer dollars. If there is one sure thing we can all learn from this, it is that any college course with a title of “pornography” has a high level of popularity amongst men, primarily those within fraternities.

 

  1. “(De)tangling the Business of Black Women’s Hair” – New York University, College of Arts and Sciences, Africana Studies – Social and Cultural Analysis

New York University has a reputation for offering a variety of courses that instruct students on knowledge that is both applicable and necessary in the real world. This class is just a prime example of that fact. By analyzing the hair industry of black women on a conceptual basis, you will be able to enhance your understanding and appreciation for the little insignificant threads of hair that grow on all of our heads.

 

  1. “From Ballet to Beyoncé: Gender and the Body in Dance and Pop Culture” – Florida State University, Humanities and Cultural Studies

After looking through the university’s course catalog, I hit the jackpot by finding this. The class looks at pop-culture figures, like Beyoncé, and the topic of dance as a whole in order to analyze the ways in which the human body expresses itself. Having an extensive knowledge of dance, pop culture, and the “Queen B” is vital for my academic and professional interests.

 

  1. “Approaches to Social Justice” – Oregon State University, Women/Gender/Sexuality Studies

Do you want to become a social justice warrior? Do you have a passion for finding offensiveness in every part of our society? If you answered yes to these questions, then this class is for you! This course will instruct you on the important skill of being able to analyze current events and non-representative case studies as a means of satisfying your own pre-conceived ideals about how everything is oppressive and unfair.

Colleges should be a place for students to further their education to open up more opportunities for their future.  Colleges should not be a place to push your political agenda while shaming others that do not agree with you.

The Left Has a Dangerous View on the Supreme Court

On October 19, 2016, Fox News held the final presidential debate between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. The debate signified the ideological clashing of the political right and the political left in our country. The two candidates debated a variety of issues that would serve to represent the fundamental differences between both sides of the political spectrum.

One issue that both candidates discussed was the Supreme Court. The candidates were asked what they believe the Constitution dictates as the proper functionality of the Supreme Court and what type of candidates they would nominate to fill the vacant justice seat if they were elected president. In response to these questions, Hillary Clinton answered by stating:

“You know, I think when we talk about the Supreme Court, it really raises the central issue in this election. Namely, what kind of country are we going to be? What kind of opportunities will we provide for our citizens? What kind of rights will Americans have? And I feel strongly that the Supreme Court needs to stand on the side of the American people. Not on the side of the powerful corporations and the wealthy. For me, that means that we need a Supreme Court that will stand up and say no to Citizens United, a decision that has undermined the election system in our country because of the way it permits dark, unaccountable money to come into our electoral system. I have major disagreements with my opponent about these issues and others that will be before the Supreme Court. But I feel that at this point in our country’s history, it is important that we not reverse marriage equality, that we not reverse Roe v. Wade, that we stand up against Citizens United, we stand up for the rights of the people in the workplace, that we stand up and basically say, the Supreme Court should represent all of us. That’s how I see the court. And the kind of people that I would be looking to nominate to the court would be in the great tradition of standing up to the powerful, standing up on behalf of our rights as Americans.”

This answer was seemingly glossed over by the media and a majority of the country. On the surface, her statement seemed to be a typical representation of what a Democrat wants out of the Supreme Court and its justices: a focus on increasing governmental involvement and scrutiny when it comes to social issues. However, Hillary’s statement on the Supreme Court displays a much larger issue in our country, one that is intertwined with the fundamental core of the political left. This issue is the political left’s conceptual view of law itself.

Article 3 of the U.S. Constitution establishes the judicial branch for our nation and thus gives existence to the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court is explicitly given the power of both appellate and original jurisdiction. The Supreme court also decides which cases it wants to hear depending on the nature of each case. This allows the court to review and rule over the appealed decisions of the lower courts amongst the states. The court is also able to give an original ruling decision over other cases that do not derive from an appeal.

When the Supreme Court makes a ruling decision about a particular court case, its justices derive their decision as well as the decision’s ideological reasoning from the Constitution itself. The Constitution embodies the founding fathers’ original intent. The Constitution establishes the law of the land, and that law serves as an extension of the founders’ original intent. The Supreme Court then rules in accordance with the Constitution and the law of the land.

This truth is self-evident within the text of the Constitution. It is also evident through the oath that Supreme Court Justices have to make before they are able to execute their duties. All justices must adhere to the founding document and the laws that are derived from it. All justices must also make decisions based solely on the Constitution and law itself. It cannot provide privileges to any individual no matter their income, gender, age, or race.

“I,______, do solemnly swear or affirm that I will administer justice without respect to persons, and do equal right to the poor and to the rich, and that I will faithfully and impartially discharge and perform all the duties incumbent upon me as ______, according to the best of my abilities and understanding, agreeable to the constitution and the laws of the United States. So help me God.”

Hillary Clinton’s statement did not reflect any of the proper components of the Supreme Court. To Hillary Clinton, and the whole political left, the justices of the Supreme Court should not formulate their decisions on the basis of the Constitution or law but instead on their own subjective opinions about how they think they can instill progress within our society. To them, this means that the court can interpret the Constitution and law anyway they see fit, for in doing so they are capable of enacting social justice. Thus, the political left does not see the Supreme Court as an institution that should be purely impartial to justice, but instead they see it as an institution that should purposefully be partial so that equality and fairness can be assured.

This is a dangerous view of the Supreme Court. The justices that make up the court do not have the moral authority to be partisan in their decisions, nor do they have the ability to transform the Constitution and the nation’s laws in order to instill their subjective views of what social justice should be. The alteration of the country’s founding document must come from the amendment process and not from the hands of the Supreme Court. The inclusion of social justice or social progress must come from legislation at the consent of the people. Restructuring the purpose of the Supreme Court into one that only exists to enact social change will only result in the depletion of the nation’s prosperous system of law.

The Alt-Right Is Not Conservative

Both major political parties saw their ideological foundations shift away from their long-established precedents. The Republican Party witnessed some of its members abandon the traditionally held small-government and pro-capitalist ideals in favor of populism and economic protectionism. The Democratic Party experienced a large transition towards governmental authoritarianism and economic socialism within its own base. This election cycle had no shortage of political movements, and recently a new movement has formed. Its very existence is the cause of great controversy and division within our political system. This movement is called the alt-right.

The movement has been a recent topic of discussion held by many political figures and reporters within the media, as they meticulously analyze it in order to get a sense of its purpose. Given all of national exposure that the alt-right receives, you would expect there to be a uniform sense of understanding about the nature of the movement. This is simply not the case. The mainstream media continuously describes the movement as being affiliated with conservatism on a theoretical basis, due simply to the fact that both beliefs lie on the right side of the political spectrum and that they share some of the same policy proposals. Liberal reporters, pundits, and politicians criticize the radical conduct of the alt-right, but then continue by denouncing all conservatives for their supposed “association” with the movement.

It is true that both the alt-right and conservatism are placed on the right side of the political spectrum, and that they share some of the same general policy proposals. However, the similarities between the two movements do not extend past these points, for the alt-right and conservatism differ in their sense of values, their views on culture, and their overall perspectives of the world itself.

The alt-right is a term that is given to individuals that believe in a sense of American white nationalism. What this means is that the alt-right proposes the protection of our country’s sense of exceptionalism, our sense of values, and our overall western culture. However, in order to achieve this feat, the alt-right views that the white-heritage of our nation’s founding colonists must be preserved. This stems from the movement’s unique perspective of the world, in which they view superficiality as a contributing factor to ideology. To them, one’s heritage, and subsequent skin color, is intertwined with one’s ideals. Therefore, an emphasis must be placed upon the external factors of the people. The alt-right makes proposals that are aimed at continuing our nation’s legacy of white heritage. They advocate for things like strong immigration regulations and enhanced border security in order to prevent an incorporation of different nationalities.

Conservatism teaches that it is necessary to preserve our original values, but the philosophy also understands that it is wrong to emphasize a protection of our country’s colonial white-heritage as a means of doing so. Conservatism recognizes the fact that one’s external features do not contribute to one’s beliefs. This is morally sound, for it does not matter which particular individuals may share our nation’s values, nor does it matter what these people may look like. All that matters is that our founding principles in and of themselves are retained. For this reason, conservatism advocates for a preservation of our country’s cultural values, such as the equality of opportunity for all people and the equitable protection of our natural rights, while not proposing white nationalism in any sense. Conservatism does share some similar policy proposals with the alt-right, like strict immigration and heightened border security, but the intent is solely for the assurance of preserving our ideological traditions. They are not a preventative measure aimed at defending the sovereignty of white colonial ancestry.

It may be tempting for conservatives to recognize or applaud the alt-right. Some may even consider joining the movement because they have the same political opponents and proposed policies. But, the alt-right’s prominence has resulted in the wrongful labeling of conservatism as a philosophy that is also in favor of white supremacy. Therefore, conservatives must completely denounce the alt-right, and they must unite in opposition to the movement in order to end the misrepresentation of conservatism’s true ideals.