Category Archives: US Politics

U.S. Presidential Libraries. Time for radical rethinking as

by Dr. Jeffrey Lant.

Author’s program note. I admit it. I am a presidential buff. I have been for all of my 66 years. I like reading about them, can’t get enough of their early lives, campaigns, policies and peccadilloes, and the tragedies and obsequies which I regard with the same high seriousness and reverence as my own family’s.

For make no mistake about it, for most of us presidents are the Fathers of the Nation and deserve the admiration, consideration and respect we give our own fathers. And it is because of this admiration and respect that I advance the audacious proposals of this article, for it is past time to scrutinize and re-think the matter of the presidential legacies called Presidential Libraries and Museums.

For you see they are, as they stand today, obsolete, expensive, white elephants, inconvenient, grossly inadequate to the task they must perform but cannot perform under the present inefficient system which has grown up like Topsy without vision, efficiency, sufficient financing, organization and maximum utility. In short the “system” is a mess, more muddled with each new president’s addition of his library, the ultimate presidential “entitlement” of all. Here, now I draw the line:

Presidential ego (none more bloated anywhere on earth) must give way to public instruction and utility.

But before we begin, here’s the peppy campaign song I selected to accompany this article. It appears in no presidential library because none of the three presidents mentioned in it have such libraries. And that, of course, is just one more reason why the present flawed, inadequate, incomplete system ignoring most presidents, must be reconstructed for the benefit, first and foremost, of the presidential institution; the executive branch of our tri-partite government.

Such an institution must be a testament, an ornament, a monument to the presidency itself, infinitely more so than merely to the men who have, for a time, held the high office and wrestled with certain events occurring during their administrations, events which might very well have had, most likely did have their roots in earlier administrations and their conclusions still later, in others.

Intricate problems, intractable, interminable, incontrollable demand the talents of many presidents; to truncate such matters into one administration, one president warps, distorts and misrepresents history. Events must never be boxed into terms for mere ease but must be presented as they developed through the several presidents involved in each. In such a way is history best served as well as the various presidents who had a hand, deft or otherwise, in making it.

Now the tune… “Tippecanoe and Tyler Too”, originally published as “Tip and Ty” was a very popular and influential campaign song of the Whig Party’s colorful Log Cabin Campaign of 1840. With its catchy lyrics (and unlimited hard cider) it helped end the era of President Andrew Jackson and his hand-picked successor Martin Van Buren, ridiculed as a small man, effete, with small ideas, rumored to wear scent and a girdle. Find it now in any search engine and enjoy its infectious rhythms.

“What’s the cause of this commotion, motion, motion/ Our country through?/ It is the ball a-rolling on/ For Tippecanoe and Tyler too/ For Tippecanoe and Tyler too/ And with them we’ll beat little Van, Van, Van/ Van is a used-up man.”

General William Henry Harrison won, thereby becoming the first Whig president. He got a burial place in Vincennes, Indiana and a modest house museum in North Bend, Ohio. But no grandiose presidential library.

His successor John Tyler became the first vice president to ascend to the presidency upon the death of the incumbent. He, too, warranted nothing more upon his death in 1862 than a respectable monument in Hollywood Cemetery in Richmond, engraved with suitably sonorous sentiments.

His private residence Sherwood Forest is still owned by his family, who, from their own resources, make the nation’s longest frame house open to the public. Because he died an avowed secessionist and supporter of the Confederacy, he was dropped from the honorable roll of American presidents, for all that he had tried, right into Abraham Lincoln’s early days as president to preserve the Union. When Virginia seceded, he went with her and so became a traitor, and that was that.

The man they defeated, Van Buren, ended up with an historic property called “Lindenwald” near Albany. It is thread bare and artifact-less to a degree. The day I visited with a friend, we were the only visitors. The park ranger asked if we might like to purchase Van Buren’s heavily ornate early Victorian dining table. He wasn’t kidding. It sold at auction in New York just a few months later!

The administrators couldn’t raise the few bucks needed to keep it in situ and so created another problem screaming for prompt resolution. With any luck one fine day His Excellency’s dining table and chairs will return to Old Kinderhook. Brief history of the U.S. presidential library system.

The presidential library system is a nationwide network of 13 libraries administered by the Office of Presidential Libraries, which is part of the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). These are repositories for preserving and making available the papers, records, collections and other historical materials of every President of the United States since Herbert Hoover. Just 13 libraries, you say; what happened to all the other presidents? Good question; without a good answer.

Some presidents (but by no means all) have libraries and museums operated by private foundations, historical societies, or state governments. The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum is owned and operated by the State of Illinois, for instance. Thus some presidents are ignored, their deeds undervalued and forgotten whilst others reside through the years in elegance, luxury, their place in the nation’s history secure and comfortably maintained. This is not right; it is not fair; and it does not do justice either to the presidents so poorly treated, if treated at all, or their individual and collective work. “Hail to the Chief has taken precedence over all and thus is the republic undermined and the imperial presidency built.

It is time to take a new look at the entire business of Presidential Libraries and Museums, ob ovo, “from the egg.” For each addition to the present system only exacerbates its inefficiencies and makes the inadequacies even more glaring than they already are.

What needs to be done… and at once.

First, President Obama, the next slated for elevation to library and museum sainthood, must say “basta” to the nation, that enough is enough; that he is willing, in the greater interests of the nation and his office, to forego perhaps its greatest perquisite…

… That instead, he will use his position, his clout, his undeniable fund raising skills to create a new kind of museum with the explicit role of explaining and exalting the presidency, not just the presidents, much less just a handful of them.

This new institution, placed in a plum position in our great capital, would exist first of all to explain what our citizens need to know about the executive office and how it works. It is a scandal how little our citizens currently know about this essential function; a living, breathing, changing institution can change all that.

How?

Look to the video games of our youngest citizens for inspiration. Their computer role plays, simulations, combats, interactions, holographics and strategies point the way to what must be done… and can be done if President Obama will lay down ego and take this opportunity to advance the greater good. He is now uniquely placed to make this decision and give the Great Republic a unique gift that will benefit the nation and all its citizens whilst giving him another historic role and feature. If he takes the long view, and not the selfish one, he will make the right decision….

About the Author

Harvard-educated Dr. Jeffrey Lant is CEO of Worldprofit, Inc., providing a wide range of online services for small and-home based businesses. Services include home business training, affiliate marketing training, earn-at-home programs, traffic tools, advertising, webcasting, hosting, design, WordPress Blogs and more. Find out why Worldprofit is considered the # 1 online Home Business Training program by getting a free Associate Membership today.

Republished with author’s permission by Daniel Fischer http://SuccessClicks.com.

A citizen writes the Inaugural Address he wants President Barack Obama to deliver January 21, 2013. What would you like this crucial speech to say?

by Dr. Jeffrey Lant.

Author’s program note. Everything, absolutely everything, pertaining to a presidential inauguration is not only of immediate, obsessive interest but constitutes, we know, History… moreover History in which we can and must participate, mull, comment upon, scrutinize, analyze, and, it’s our right, even excoriate, denounce and ridicule without fear of retribution. And so we watch as it all unfolds for you, for me, for each of us…

What the President did while he waited to take his place in the bullet-proof limousine… what the First Lady wore and whose fashion career she made thereby… how the Vice President, the person always just a heart beat away, looked as he took the 1884 oath to uphold the Constitution that kept him next to the most important person in the world but powerless and obscure for another four years. We cannot get enough, no detail too small.

And so we watch, mesmerized, by the most ordinary activities… we learn the President has a new coat and a new reason for his radiant smile… we watch as he walks briskly to the dais where the World, every friend and foe, is waiting impatiently for him… we note the dignitaries… each one a power in our fragmented, federal nation, forged by revolution.

Who is here today… where do they sit and why… who is absent? It is all grist for our mill. The Great Republic does not have the brilliant pageantry of a monarchy nor would it be appropriate, for the precise traditions of our nation are simple and unadorned. Yet there is not a freedom-loving person on Earth who does not find the matter at hand moving, grand, capable of putting a lump in your throat at any moment.

America stands before the world today, proud, reverent, hopeful, riven with problems of every kind, glad to have the opportunity to solve them. At this moment the sharp notes of “Hail to the Chief”, written in 1812 for just one person and this moment, rain upon us all. It is our President and whatever our party affiliation and opinion we wish him Godspeed… for he is our pilot now.

“My fellow citizens:

Forty-five times before, most recently by me at this place four years go, each President has taken the short oath that transforms him from citizen to your servant. It is a moment of awe, humility, and for celebration of the endless possibilities which constitute our Great Republic, and for the vision and genius of our people who, day by day, make these endless possibilities constantly improved realities. God bless America!

Let me share my vision of this place with you, this land of purple mountain’s majesty, from sea to shining sea.

My America is a place of tolerance and unstinting welcome; not merely a great nation, however significant, but bigger than this place, a concept. That here we have as our rooted objective not merely talking about pluralism but fostering it so that we create a nation whose strength is based on, drawn from every diverse strand. As such I shall urge the Congress to give first and prominent attention to creating a workable immigration policy that is at once fair, inclusive, and flexible. Franklin D. Roosevelt once reminded us that we are all immigrants. We must work together so that these immigrants become the best possible Americans, the pride of the Great Republic.

Americans need work and must find their way to success amidst the vicissitudes of the ever changing global economy. This means constant, sustained, never-ending focus on jobs for Americans. Thus, as Commander-in-Chief I hereby declare war on unemployment, war on underemployment, war on dead-end jobs, jobs without future, for America must shape the future in which she’ll abide… creating the jobs that future will demand.

Thus, today, a day of national renewal, I will commence a new, focused attack on the many destructive, pernicious, debilitating aspects of unemployment. Our headquarters will be what in World War II was called the “situation room.” It is now named after Franklin Roosevelt and here I shall work with America to the very moment when every American who wants a job has a job, for my vision of America is an employed America.

It is also a nation where children are safe and not murdered, where the smiles and joys of youth are fostered, valued, treasured… because their smiles and trusting natures brighten the lives of so many, including my own. Just a few weeks ago, I went to Connecticut, to Newtown, and what I experienced there changed my attitude and my life. And so I say this to you, my fellow citizens, “Remember Newtown” and work with me to make sure the sweet laugher of our youngest is not lost forever, their innocent blood dappling the snows of New England, or anywhere else.

Thus I have today instructed Vice President Biden, one of the finest public officials it has been my privilege to know and to call upon for the benefit of America, to take the chair of a national commission on this important matter. I have advised him to invite good people of different viewpoints to participate. The issue is multi-faceted, complicated, thorny and difficult. But the good people of America will solve this matter and stop its terrible manifestations. Because that’s what America does… and what we owe those poor dead children, the children we failed… and must never fail again.

Now I wish to speak to you about health, because life without health is a cruel hoax. We have, I am proud to say, made many advancements towards total national fitness. It is my pride that some of the most important of these were made on my watch. This is good, but America, citadel of the healing arts, can do better, must do better. Thus, I have called upon Bill Gates, a man of vision, kindness, and determination to head a multi-national commission on the eradication of disease, one disease at a time. Such an effort must link government resources and those of generous private donors, individual and corporate. America is admirably suited to lead this initiative… and to lead it now. Since we are able, so must we do.

Similarly, it is time to erase the pirates, marauders and e-highwaymen, the people who have turned one of history’s greatest devices, the Internet, into a mine field where the legitimate and necessary interests of individuals, businesses and government are attacked and destroyed by a handful of criminals and malcontents. This scourge must be stopped and stopped at once. Officials from my administration have been instructed at once to eradicate cyber-crime and free the world from the depredations of the destructive few and so advance universal amity and communication; a future where the entire globe and every person benefits from this epochal advance of massive utility.

Utility, too, must be brought to our foreign policy and diplomatic endeavors. I intend to remind the people of our troubled planet that we have not forgotten our roots, our heritage, the great ideas of democratic governance conceived here, developed here, perfected here, still living here. We are a government of the people, by the people, for the people. This is our heritage, our creed, and our undying example. No foe whoever he is, wherever he may be should forget this and no friend must ever call upon us in need, only to discover that this is nothing more than empty words. And so I have requested outgoing Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton to take up a new role in her historic career; to transform American diplomacy so that America’s mission, America’s message, and America’s heart are known to every person everywhere. This lady who has forged new pathways for women has now agreed to assist me forge new pathways for world peace, for only in peace is security.

One more lady and her crusade must be cited, my rock and loving friend Michelle, always First Lady of my heart. Michelle has been a tireless supporter of American arts, literature, poetry, painting, sculpture, architecture, and historic preservation. Too often our national support for these essential cultural features has been paltry, derisory, an afterthought. But no longer.

A Great Republic requires thoughtful, sustained, and broad-based support for the arts, all the arts. We have waited too long to provide such support. If not now, when? If not us, who? Every great nation glories in its arts and its masters. It is time for our Great Republic to do so.

It will be said that such a national agenda, with so many demanding, intractable problems, is too ambitious for a “lame duck” President. That second terms, however massively bestowed by our citizens, are often futile and bereft of meaningful successes and worthy endeavors. Perhaps. But we, improving everywhere, must not let such improving end at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue where more than anywhere else vibrant change and unceasing betterment must be the order of the day, every day.

Thus, I give you one last reform: the end of Presidential libraries as we have known them. Presently such libraries, monuments to men more than the great and high office itself, commence with President Herbert Hoover and end with President George Bush. It is now time to rethink this matter through the creation of a soaring institution featuring the Presidency, the Congress, and the Supreme Court of these United States, our three co-equal branches of government, too little known by our people, young and old.

Such an institution, set in the midst of our great Capital, made awe-inspiring and thrilling by our unparalleled interactive technology would put the focus where it truly belongs… on the people and what we have, with God’s help, wrought through days of duress and triumph. sacrifice and unified purpose.

Now we must begin for there is much to do. Just steps from this place of our assembling, Abraham Lincoln said, “Fellow citizens, we cannot escape history… No personal significance or insignificance can spare one or another of us.” Thus, I invite you to be an active participant in the greatest odyssey of your life, a voyage each generation must take all over again with determination, commitment and joy… the epic task of reinventing our Great Republic and the nation and people on whom God shed his grace and infinite love. Hallelujah!”

About the Author

Harvard-educated Dr. Jeffrey Lant is CEO of Worldprofit, Inc., providing a wide range of online services for small and-home based businesses. Services include home business training, affiliate marketing training, earn-at-home programs, traffic tools, advertising, webcasting, hosting, design, WordPress Blogs and more. Find out why Worldprofit is considered the # 1 online Home Business Training program by getting a free Associate Membership today. Republished with author’s permission by Daniel Fischer http://SuccessClicks.com.

Is there a future for the GOP? Yes, but only if they heed these admonitions andrecommendations. Otherwise the party’s marginalization will continue, its end certain, ignominious.

by Dr. Jeffrey Lant.

Author’s program note. Steven Spielberg’s important new film “Lincoln” has just been released and not a moment too soon. It’s based on historian Doris Kearns Goodwin’s best-selling book “Team of Rivals:The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln.”

It’s about what it takes to move mountains, manage men, get things done and lead, bending but not abandoning every moral principle or strongly held belief. It is about politics, America’s blood sport, and how they are played at the very top where angels fear to tread… and rightly so. There’s nothing angelic about the participants or the process. It’s a very messy… and absolutely crucial… business that ensures our Democracy works.

For the music to this piece, I have selected “Dixie”, written in 1859 by Daniel Decatur Emmett. Yes, the very anthem of sedition and treason. Why? Because Abe Lincoln thought it a fine tune… and because it reminds us that throwing away a good thing, the greatest reel ever written, makes no sense. Leadership, even in music, means enjoying the good; finessing the bad and remembering what Scarlet O’Hara said: “Tonight I could dance with Abe Lincoln himself”…. and sailed through a sea of outrage and disapproval to prove her point and have a thoroughly good time.

Loss, bad loss, catastrophic loss.

John Boehner (R-OH), Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, is now again the highest ranking Republican in the Great Republic. That wasn’t the idea, but it is the result after an unenlightening campaign that rained money but where victory eluded them… and not by a narrow margin either. Like most everyone in America Boehner has his ideas about why this happened… and to his credit he didn’t hold back when he addressed his chastened, subdued House colleagues by telephone the day after the victory that didn’t happen.

He made it clear they would have to work with the Democrats they viscerally detest… and in this deduction Boehner at last sounded less like the bombastic ultra-partisan, immutable control freak than he usually does but, perhaps for the first time, actually a tad Lincolnesque. For no American politician ever labored so hard or so successfully to work with (and ultimately control) the people necessary to the fruition of his administration and the nation than Lincoln.

He took his political competitors, even his avowed enemies, and plunked them down in his Cabinet… where he could see what they were up to, the better to control them to get his way. It was bold, audacious, unprecedented maybe even fool hardy. And no one knew whether it would succeed or not, not even Abe Lincoln, the most belittled, reviled, and underestimated American politician ever. He asked every candidate who had opposed his nomination at the Republican convention in Chicago to take a portfolio.

They couldn’t believe their good fortune and assumed their power and control of the new government assured. After all they were men of merit, nationally known, nationally renowned. Seward of New York! Chase of Ohio! Cameron of Pennsylvania! Bates of Missouri! No wonder the weak and untried Lincoln wanted them at hand. He would reign. They would rule. Or so they thought…

But Lincoln understood men, understood how to manage them, and bring them along, always finagling, brokering, deal making to accomplish the needful and always with country humor and good sense. Speaker Boehner ought to ensure that every House Member, Democrat and Republican, gets Goodwin’s book and masters it.

Don’t bet the ranch on Aging White Men.

Lincoln had a goal and never lost sight of it: to preserve the federal Union. He made it clear what he would do to achieve and maintain that goal: anything, everything. If it would help, it was on the table.

“My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and is not either to save or to destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it, and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone I would also do that.”

Now have you ever heard Boehner and company say anything like this about the crucial matter of righting America’s rickety financial house? You haven’t because he hasn’t. And until he does, until he says that everything is on the table to achieve the great goal of saving America’s finances, the goal will never be achieved and all our lives and endeavors blighted accordingly. This great goal, in short, can not just be accomplished by aging white men, the foundation of the Republican party.

Here are the bleak statistics the GOP must wrestle with, statistics which cost them not just the 2012 presidential election but, if not radically improved, will cost them every future presidential election as well:

Women: 55% Obama, 44% Romney.

Hispanics: 71% Obama, 27% Romney.

Young voters under 30: 60% Obama, 36% Romney.

Black voters: 95% Obama, 4% Romney.

Asian American voters: 80% Obama, 19% Romney.

Note: For the record, I must remind you that these numbers are based on various election-date exit polls and other unofficial surveys. Still, the results of these polls are consistent, and therefore are very much to the point.

Radical outreach required, starting at once.

The staff, offices, and work of the national committees dwindle significantly as soon as the election results are in. This model won’t serve the GOP or solve its glaring problem, that it has come to rely upon a group of aging white men who cannot deliver victory in and of themselves. Anyone who can count can see that and the fact that 7,000,000 fewer of these men voted in 2012 than 2008 ought to scare the bejesus out of anyone who wishes the Grand Old Party well. The natural mortality of its favored constituency promises assured cataclysm.

What, then, must be done?

1) Building the new GOP and measurably increasing its voter turn-out in each designated category (women, voters under 30, Asian Americans, etc.) must be an explicit objective. A vigorous title such as “Building the NEW GOP!” should be adopted.

2) Respected office holders should be recruited to head each category and its outreach efforts.

3) Adequate budgets should be drawn up and, with the full assistance of the national party organizations, ample funds raised. This is crucial.

4) IT professionals must be hired to advise on the best way to utilize Internet options, including social media.

5) Internet recruitment campaigns along the lines of “And I’m a Mormon” should be implemented, e.g. “And I’m a Republican”.

6) Focus groups should be established to ascertain reasons why designated groups would and, importantly would not, vote Republican. Congressional leadership should be involved in this matter.

7) State legislatures and local civic, business and elected leaders should be canvassed for desirable candidates in each category for federal offices. Such information should be shared with congressional campaign committees to allocate funding, etc.

8) A list of open or vulnerable Democratic representatives and senators should be drawn up. Resources should be raised and concentrated on the most likely targets.

9) All information from national headquarters should be “translated” into a form most likely to resonate with designated populations.

10) Study the great coalition and team builders who built the modern Democratic party. Congressman Thomas P. “Tip” O’Neill, Jr. (later U.S. Speaker of the House) whose work in a generation changed Massachusetts from solidly Republican to solidly Democratic. Or Senator George McGovern whose signal work transformed overwhelmingly Republican South Dakota into a state “in play” for the Democrats. And, of course, the greatest Democratic coalition builder, Franklin D. Roosevelt, whose transforming brilliance ensured Democratic victories and Republican irrelevance for a generation. These far-sighted, hardworking strategists set the objective for themselves and the Democrats; then did the necessary to achieve it.

Study Lincoln, every fibre, every nuance, every move, every thought.

Remember, the Republican Party, the Grand Old Party, is the party of Lincoln. What this means is that you are charged with doing whatever it takes to keep America strong by keeping its people strong. Sadly too often, and glaringly in 2012, you have forgotten your great charge, lost amongst the negativity and nay-saying which has turned the party of Lincoln into a petty shadow of its historical grandeur and significance.

Changing this reality into a vision to thrill America is your urgent task now. Restore the primacy of great Lincoln’s unsurpassed genius for governance and in the process you will not only save the Grand Old Party and make it grander still; you will save the Great Republic, our nation, our people, our mission. Your moment is here. Seize it… for the good of us all.

‘Da Doo Ron Ron’. The 2016 presidential campaign begins today, November 6, 2012. Here’s what smart candidates must do to use the Internet to win. An audacious plan for capturing the White House and thrilling America.

by Dr. Jeffrey Lant.

Author’s program note. Are you one of those people (I call them optimists) who believes the re-election of Barack Obama plus the election of thousands of successful candidates for federal, state, and local offices ends the campaign and should earn all of us in the Great Republic an electioneering respite? My, my, shows what you know!

The good news is that the 2012 campaign is well and truly over except for a few candidates whose races are still too close to call. They have to remain in vigilant campaign mode until election officials and all too often the courts render judgement.

But who cares about that except the parties involved? $3.3 billion more or less was spent on this year’s 2012 presidential candidates, as well as additional billions on all the other candidates and their campaigns. Surely, the matter having ended now, at last, we get… peace —

NOT!

Bring on 2016!

The truth is, the 2016 presidential campaign is now officially underway. And if you don’t like it, think the never ending campaign should be curtailed, as well as limitations imposed on the number of bucks raised and spent, GET OVER IT. We’re talking, after all, about who gets to lead the Great Republic and be the most important person on Earth for at least 4 whole years; the person who gets all the loaves and fishes, the chance to shape destiny, not to mention Air Force One, “Hail to the Chief”, and your favorite muffins whenever you like!

To accompany this article, I have selected “Da Doo Ron Ron”, a peppy little tune released in 1963 by the Crystals, a one-hit girl group. Go to any search engine, find it now and listen; with just the slightest amount of imagination you can hear these hot girls saying “they do run run, they do run run.” And so the candidates most assuredly do.

The greatest communications device — misused in 2012… ready to change the very nature of campaigns and politics in 2016: the Internet.

In 2008, Barack Obama proved what a technology pioneer could accomplish. In this case, Obama (born 1961) and his campaign turned the ‘net into a cash cow that wowed the world and was a key factor in getting him elected. Hillary Clinton (born 1947) didn’t get it and as for John McCain (born 1936) he ate the dust of both Democratic candidates. Importantly, the candidate who knew the most about technology and how to use it to raise money and garner votes won…. It is entirely likely that this paradigm will determine most and maybe all future presidential elections. Re-read that sentence, candidates; it spells out your fate.

The Internet: misused, under used, misunderstood in 2012.

Sadly, what happened in 2008, which should have provided the candidates with the clearest of insights into what this medium might deliver, did not carry over into the 2012 campaign. Yes, the medium delivered money… but you need more than money to win presidential elections as Mitt Romney, champ fund raiser, now knows.

And so these specific recommendations which if followed carefully could well determine who leads America and the world starting Inauguration Day 2017.

If I’m right that mastery of the unique communications environment we call the ‘net will determine the fate not just of individual candidates, but the campaign in general, and who gets to make policy and history from the Oval Office at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue; this is a change of fundamental importance. Here then is what candidates who wish to be serious contenders must know and do about the ‘net.

1) Hire the best IT guys to advise you on what the Internet is, its salient features, and how it really works and, most importantly, how it will work for you. Be aware that any people you hire will likely be not merely years but whole decades younger than you. You will have to put your formidable ego to one side and LISTEN.

Not only do such people know more than you do; their skills more than yours will shape your candidacy and the entire campaign and electoral process. In other words these wet-behind-the-ears whippersnappers will significantly influence if not dictate what happens — and hence your future.

Thus, the older you are, the less technology you know, the more your campaign will be influenced and directed by people who think devil dogs and twinkies are gourmet food with text-messaging the only language they ever knew. Are you prepared for this?

2) Make getting your IT team in place your first priority. Spend the big bucks and pull in every favor to get the top people on this team. Splurge and treat these junior birdmen with every sign of respect and consideration. Go see the movie “Big” (1988) with Tom Hanks. Your character is the owner of the toy company; take note what that wise man does. You’ll have to do as much or more, or they’ll get bored and leave, taking their crucial skills with them.

3) Resolve to record a video of just 5-7 minutes six days a week; (even the Lord of Hosts rested on the seventh, and you probably should, too). Hire a well respected producer, someone with Hollywood level production experience and a sensitivity to the unique Internet environment. The producer’s team should include the best possible content writers, editors, and copy writers.

Go to jeffreylantarticles.com. This will give you a good idea of the content, tone and presentation required. The Internet lends itself to stories that inform, educate, enthral and motivate. Dry copy won’t cut it. Neither will endless attacks, denigrations, and negativities about the other candidates.This is your chance to shape the political agenda and WIN. Don’t blow it with comments banal, infra dig, and belittling.

4) Start producing Internet videos at once. Make sure to run at least a few through focus groups. You need to know whether what you are talking about connects and resonates with real people. This is crucial.

So what should these programs be about? For one thing, the very real problems of average Americans, their dreams, aspirations, what makes them angry, what makes them happy and contented. Speak to the people; speak about the people; speak from your heart… be honest, upright, inspiring, a problem solver, a person who can motivate millions, earning their awe and support, whilst never losing the common touch.

One more point: don’t say the same thing over and over again, the standard “stump” speech. Talk about such things, of course, but not to the exclusion of everything else. Your webcasts must focus on every aspect of the Great Republic, not just a few talking points growing more stale with every reiteration.

This means talking about Social Security… but also what you intend to do to keep the great African elephant from being wiped out this decade. It means dealing with national defense issues but also how we can deal with continual cut-backs in arts budgets at public schools.

In short, nothing that pertains to the Great Republic and its place in the world, triumphs, woes, grand events and more pedestrian matters will be neglected or forgotten… for to neglect or forget is to diminish the great land you wish to lead.

And so, I end where I began, with the Crystals and their single hit. Use these suggestions and recommendations, and you’ll not only “da doo ron ron” but “da doo win win”.

About the Author

Harvard-educated Dr. Jeffrey Lant is CEO of Worldprofit, Inc., providing a wide range of online services for small and-home based businesses. Services include home business training, affiliate marketing training, earn-at-home programs, traffic tools, advertising, webcasting, hosting, design, WordPress Blogs and more. Find out why Worldprofit is considered the # 1 online Home Business Training program by getting a free Associate Membership today. Republished with author’s permission by Daniel Fischer http://SuccessClicks.com.

‘Civus Americanus sum.’ On what must be done to protect Americans abroad in theage of world revolution, terror, and outrage. Some thoughts.

by Dr. Jeffrey Lant

Author’s program note. Are you a citizen of the United States? Do you wish to travel, live, or work outside the geographical boundaries of the nation? Do you expect to do so in confidence that, at the conclusion of your sojourn, you will return in one piece, safe and sound, not mangled remains in a flag-draped coffin, premature death and bitter tears your part and your survivors? Then this article is for you.

Lord Palmerston

Have you ever heard of Henry John Temple, 3rd Viscount Palmerston (1784-1865)? Probably not and yet this significant British statesman, often Foreign Secretary (from 1830) and Prime Minister (from1855) understood that when you travel abroad you are entitled to the protection of your government and nation. And on June 25, 1850 he gave perhaps the greatest speech ever made on the matter of what a citizen abroad may and has the right to expect.

The speech in question concerned a merchant of murky lineage named Don Pacifico, a British subject whose claims of commercial injury had been ignored by the ramshackle Greek government of its day; (some things seem never to change.) He had a smoldering grievance and in due course this grievance came to the attention of the British government of Lord John Russell which in the usual way of such entities did — nothing; sloth, a blind eye, and soothing banalities being their response to the pleas and cries for assistance of the exigent Pacifico and his irksome matter, so important to him, so boring and tedious for the ministers.

Palmerston took this unpromising situation and, with an eye of genius, turned it into a great pronouncement on what citizenship means and what must be done to assist such people in their legitimate affairs, no matter where these affairs take them. Here is the conclusion to his great speech, a speech that shamed the gentlemen of England in Parliament assembled and reminded them why England was great.

“… whether, as the Roman, in days of old, held himself free from indignity, when he could say ‘Civis Romanus sum’; so also a British subject, in whatever land he may be, shall feel confident that the watchful eye and the strong arm of England, will protect him against injustice and wrong.”

Even before he finished his great oration, those gentlemen of England, very much aware of the importance of what they’d just heard, were on their feet shouting their approval. The atmosphere was electric… and at a single moment Palmerston’s advancement was assured; Don Pacifico’s compensation became certain… and the right of British subjects anywhere on earth to safety, security and protection were made clear and adamant.

To be British meant to be protected by a nation clear on its obligations to citizens.

It is now time for the government of the United States to do the same, because our citizens most everywhere on earth have never been so exposed and vulnerable before. Here’s why.

Anyone with a bee in his bonnet can release a cartoon, article or film construed or explicitly designed as an attack on Islam and the Prophet Mohammad. The sequence of events goes like this:

1) Attack made in any form.

2) Attack posted on YouTube and on the Internet generally.

3) Attack comes to the attention of radical Muslims.

Radicals are predictably outraged by this sacrilege. They riot and vow revenge.

They attack any U.S. government offices like the embassy of the United States… and U.S. citizens wherever they can find them, including church missions, schools, work sites with U.S. personnel, food banks, etc. In other words, once the original sacrilege is published, no American citizen is safe from attack by Islamic radicals and fundamentalists. And so innocent Americans die.

4) Once one group of Islamic adherents riots, their fellow Muslims riot, thus provoking a chain reaction of outrage, destruction, and murder.

This sequence of events is clear and has already occurred on several occasions.

Item: Jyllands-Postern Prophet Muhammad cartoons controversy, 30 September 2005. (Denmark)

Item: “Innocence of Muslims “, explicitly anti Muslim film, released on the Internet in July 2012. (USA)

Item: publication of anti-Muslim cartoons in the “Charlie Hebdo” magazine, 18 September 2012 (France).

And so groups and publications of no particular importance, become notorious and influential simply by publishing something that insults Islam and the Prophet Mohammad, causing their rabid and unrestrained followers to erupt in murderous and destructive rage. As a result the real innocents, our fellow countrymen, find themselves at immediate risk, life and limb.

Predictions

We may be assured that irresponsible, fringe groups will continue to outrage and insult Muslims, thereby provoking maximum thoughtless and destructive response and Muslim recriminations. We have three courses of action:

1) Do nothing beyond the little done at present. In other words, retain the status quo and hope for the best.

2) Remove all citizens in whatever capacity and position they may be. Revert to a “Fortress America” isolationist position, saving lives but causing significant economic dislocation and undermining defense.

3) Begin immediate work on a new policy towards Americans overseas, proactive, not merely waiting for outrages to occur but assuming such outrages can and will occur at regular intervals and that we must plan accordingly.

Option 3 is the constructive alternative, and we must start to implement it at once.

1) The President must announce that the current situation is inadequate and commit the necessary resources to commence reform.

2) The Secretary of State must be designated the responsible authority.

3) All persons in the government currently involved in this matter must be placed under the Secretary of State, so there is a unified, not duplicated, response.

4) Policy changes must be brainstormed, evaluated, adopted, publicized and promoted.

5) Creation of a directory of traveling and particularly overseas resident Americans so that pertinent warning and other messages may be emailed and otherwise instantly transmitted.

6) New governments like that in Egypt and Libya should be approached for the purpose of beefing up whatever protective services and capabilities exist. We must never assume any, especially new, government has such services; we must ask and verify for ourselves, with the constant question being “What have you available to support U.S. citizens?” Their willingness to answer this question and work with us to protect our nationals should weigh heavily when they want and ask for everything under the sun from us.

Implementation of these 6 steps will begin, but just begin, to solve the problem that exists and is slated to get worse unless such decisive action is taken at once. Remember, the first job of any government is to protect its citizens, at home and abroad.

Will this solve the problem? Probably not. So what about this? Go to any search engine and find Louis Armstrong and his 1968 song “What a Wonderful World”; written by Bob Thiele and George David Weiss. At first you may, like me, find the words sophomoric, even silly. But in fact, they offer the most strenuous challenge of our life, to look at the world as it is now and do our bit it to improve and sustain it. For each of us must take responsibility for creating the trees of green, red roses, too, and so shape the wonderful world that should be the objective of all of us, for we are each of us citizens of this planet, “Civus mundi sum”.

About the Author

Harvard-educated Dr. Jeffrey Lant is CEO of Worldprofit, Inc., providing a wide range of online services for small and-home based businesses. Services include home business training, affiliate marketing training, earn-at-home programs, traffic tools, advertising, webcasting, hosting, design, WordPress Blogs and more. Find out why Worldprofit is considered the # 1 online Home Business Training program by getting a free Associate Membership today. Republished with author’s permission by Daniel Fischer http://SuccessClicks.com.

Wrong right from the start. Problems, muddle, confusion, embarrassment at the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate.

by Dr. Jeffrey Lant

Author’s program note. You’ve got to wonder whether the late Senator Edward M. Kennedy and his second wife Victoria Reggie ever bothered to read the Constitution of these United States before advancing what the Senator saw as his ‘legacy,” the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate.

Article 1 Section 1 of the most important and influential document of the Great Republic reads thus:

“All legislative powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.”

In crystal clear language, the Constitution lays out what legislative entities there will be, what powers they shall possess, how many representatives there will be in a state, who is eligible to serve, what officers there will be, how they are chosen, etc.

At no time does the Constitution state or imply that one branch shall be considered superior to the other. Instead, the Constitution lucidly makes the point that the two branches of Congress are equal.

This being the case, any discussion of the Congress, its history, and its place in the Great Republic must perforce focus not on one branch or the other but on the two co-equal branches and how they work together to advance the people’s business, or not.

Why did Senator Kennedy decide to focus his institute on just one branch? First, because he served in the United States Senate for nearly fifty years and was widely regarded as one of its Grand Old Men. Second, because it was the sole branch of government in which all three famous brothers served, John, Robert, and Edward.

Once the decision was made that the Institute should focus solely on the United States Senate, a host of otherwise avoidable problems was planted and began to grow. These problems are now numerous and acute, threatening an already illogical organization that wiser heads than those in charge would have seen as a disaster waiting to happen, taking prompt remedial action accordingly, not least to save the face of this celebrated family.

The project is born (2003).

When you’re a Kennedy of the Camelot Kennedys, it is expected, anticipated that you will have a suitable monument, large, grandiose, something that adds to the family’s renowned place in the history of the Great Republic. For after all, to be a Kennedy is to be an historic figure. No one knows this better than the Kennedy in question, the next to be immortalized. Discussions amongst the cognoscenti go something like this: “Should I run for offices for which I am entirely unqualified… or not?” “Should the names of my several spouses and friends with benefits be included in my monument… or not?” “Should this stirring quotation attributed to me but written by my ghost writer be chiselled in my eternal stone… or not?”

Such questions are unending, continual… and treated with the utmost seriousness by those expecting apotheosis, victims all to a collective edifice complex, the latest example being the Kennedy Senate Institute, a whopping 40,000 square feet of hubris. And what is to take place in all that space? Just about everything that has to do with the Senate, including its history, members, operating procedures, educational programs, issues, debates, filibusters, legislative training et al. Only senatorial amours and favorite salad dressings have been left out.

The problem is, the way this institute is organized is egregiously incorrect. Just as love and marriage go together like a horse and carriage, so does the United States Senate go hand-in-hand with the United States House of Representatives. Whilst each has its unique aspects, neither makes complete sense (much less a productive legislative enterprise) without the other. They are two halves of the whole.

Imagine this scenario.

Ms. Martin’s 5th graders are learning about how Congress works, how bills become laws… or not. Emmy Sue asks what happens when a bill passes the Senate. What then? And there’s the rub… the Senate-only institute stops just when it needs to continue, so that people understand the complete Congress, the total legislative process, not merely its seigneurial “upper” branch. Even Emmy Sue, age 10, will know something’s amiss when the guide says, “Er, the Senate bill goes to the House, but this institute only covers the Senate, so I cannot tell you more….” Even ten-year-olds would consider this weird, bogus, dumb. And they’d be right. That’s why there must be a complete halt to the current farce… and a total rethinking of this embarrassing “institute” that has “Keystone cops” written all over it, before there are further cost over runs and another seventy million dollars, more or less, are wasted.

What must be done?

1) The Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate as presently configured must be terminated. Its 40,000 square feet should be transferred to the JFK Presidential Library. Suitable spaces within the whole should be carved out for Robert Kennedy, Edward M. Kennedy, their wives and families, personal lives and professional achievements.

2) Focus should shift to a much needed Congress facility where everything about the Congress of the United States, past, present and future, can be showcased and presented to a nation which desperately needs a brilliant state-of-the-art interactive facility, the apogee of American technology, architecture, and historic preservation and presentation.

3) A suitable Washington, D.C. location should be scouted, considered, selected… no other location can or should be reviewed, much less Dorchester, Massachusetts, its current pied-a-terre.

4) ALL current administrators should be graciously, courteously shown the door forthwith.

5) The highest possible blue ribbon advisory board and trustees should be appointed with the sitting president a must as honorary chair. Mrs. Victoria Reggie Kennedy can have an honorable seat amongst them, but no more. An important institution requires important governors, and it is telling that the current institute has none.

6) A complete fund raising plan should be drafted with both private and public funds to be raised.

7) A knowledgeable, hands-on, organizational expert must be appointed, an individual of skills, deep pockets, and determination. My suggestion? Mitt Romney, if the presidency eludes him. After all Romney salvaged the 2002 Olympics. He is even an historic footnote in the story. He ran against Senator Kennedy in 1994, and lost. Mitt would do the project proud. His considerable pride alone would see to that.

Can such a radical shift take place? Of course. IF the principals now bobbling the matter are open to reason and a willingness to put the needs of the Great Republic above their own. Thus we need a “fixer” to arrange matters with grace, kindness, clarity, efficiency and such ruthless and surgical incision as may be called for.

In short, we need Joseph P. Kennedy, Patriarch. He would have seen the point, dragooned the personnel and raised the lavish funds required. Oh, where is Joe Kennedy now, and where shall we find his like — and fast enough to avoid more muddle and abashment? For these, muddle and abashment, have set the two surviving children of Edward Kennedy against the woman he loved and revealed how toxic this situation already is and how much more poisonous it could get. For now, this is the sad legacy of Edward Moore Kennedy, and until it is firmly taken in hand, rethought and redirected it will fester and deteriorate into rancor, bitterness, and enmity. Musical note. As the music to accompany this article, I have selected “The Country’s In The Very Best of Hands” (music by Gene De Paul; lyrics by Johnny Mercer) from the 1956 production of “Li’l Abner.” Go now to hear this ironic gem… and let’s hope it motivates the folks so over their heads and misguided at The Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate, so obviously not in the best of hands, or anywhere thing near.

About the Author

Harvard-educated Dr. Jeffrey Lant is CEO of Worldprofit, Inc., providing a wide range of online services for small and-home based businesses. Services include home business training, affiliate marketing training, earn-at-home programs, traffic tools, advertising, webcasting, hosting, design, WordPress Blogs and more. Find out why Worldprofit is considered the # 1 online Home Business Training program by getting a free Associate Membership today. Republished with author’s permission by Daniel Fischer http://SuccessClicks.com.

Why the 2012 presidential campaign is boring me witless… and why that’s bad for the Great Republic. A sound off.

by Dr. Jeffrey Lant.

Author’s program note. I have been a political animal my whole life, my entire life since birth, February 16, 1947. I mean, I was chairman of the Puffer School Republican Party in 1960. When Illinois Governor William G. Stratton came down on the school playground for some platitudes, I was the guy who was taken up in his excellency’s helicopter. The local paper blazoned “Local Ladd flies high,” being a play on my middle name (“Ladd”).

The fact that Governor Stratton was wiped out in his bid for a third term (thereby helping hand John F. Kennedy Illinois and the White House) and later made the obligatory stay in the Big House the way most Illinois governors do, in no way diminished my personal thrill. For I was the most political of animals… beguiled by America’s real national pastime and blood sport — politics — never happier than when sticking pins in the huge maps that turned my adolescent bedroom into Campaign Central, its very walls covered in ephemera — buttons, posters, autographed photos and brochures featuring the greatest slogans every written — and ignored. Everything — absolutely everything — about politics thrilled me. That was then…

… this is now. But before I survey the lugubrious aspect of political affairs, before I hold up system and candidates to justifiable obloquy and disgust… before I offer a panoply of needed reforms and recommendations, I shall give you today’s music, for if this rollicking set-piece of Americana cannot improve the atmosphere and help revive and reinvigorate, then we are well and truly doomed. And so, with the greatest possible hope, I give you… “Take Me Out To The Ball Game,” even more American than the apple pie nobody’s grandmother makes home made anymore.

“Take Me Out to the Ball Game.”

This 1908 Tin Pan Alley song was written by Jack Norworth and Albert Von Tilzer. The first notable thing you need to know is neither of its creators had ever attended even a single game prior to writing it, thus providing justifiable license for politicians (and that would be every politician) who talk vehemently and so well about matters they have never seen and know nothing about. (By the way Von Tilzer didn’t see his first baseball game until 20 years after his iconic achievement; it took Norworth even longer, 32 years. They helped immortalize a game that clearly neither saw much point of even attending.) Go now to any search engine and find it. Personally I prefer the original 1908 Edison recording by Edward Meeker. He sings it with just the rousing gusto and tongue-in-cheek enthusiasm required.

The boys of Cambridge.

It is now time to tell you something about the presidential candidates you have probably never known or considered before, namely that these men are both card-carrying members of the best and the brightest, that is they are both Harvard boys, Harvard grads. But they were instructed by and matured in two quite different faculties, Law and Business. Once you understand this you begin to understand their manifest strengths — and weaknesses… and our national predicament.

Barrack Obama was a star at Harvard Law School, right across the street from where I’m writing you. As such he became adept at what clever lawyers do: he learned not to make pies but to divide pies. In other words, he was trained to be expert at dividing what is not his; what he had done nothing to create. Instead, lawyers prosper by taking a sum of anything and making a deal with it, a deal that will give his client as much of what’s being cut up as possible; thereby increasing his commission… and wealth.

Lawyers, especially Harvard trained lawyers, know nothing about the grubby, demanding, even squalid work of building wealth. But when partners fall out, marriages fail, squabbling children fight each other for more than their share, no one is more equipped to fight for you using the tools which, in the right manicured hands, can and will be devastating to opponents. Here the pen (and precedent) are truly mightier than the sword. Barrack Obama is the master of masters here.

On the other side of the River Charles lies the citadel of capitalism and unimaginable wealth, Harvard Business School. Here Mitt Romney, plutocrat, learned the essential secrets that turned him into one of history’s richest people. The game went something like this: find a business, review its operations carefully, then surgically remove what is not profitable (including excess labor) to create profit. Then sell the reorganized, vastly more efficient enterprise for maximum — and fastest — return on investment. It was all about what capitalism is always all about — money. Creating jobs, employing people and improving their lives had absolutely nothing to do with it.

Now these supremely gifted men are charged with the pressing task of persuading “we the people” that they have what it takes to lead a fractured, factious nation at a perilous time. And so far we are underwhelmed…. and increasingly impatient. As sardonic Miss Peggy Lee sang so well, lyric acid in her voice, “Is that all there is?” Because if that’s all there is, then let’s keep dancing.

Going through the motions, enthusiasm tepid at best.

In 1948 an execrated little man from Independence, Missouri, a man who by an accident of history was President of the United States wrote his sister a letter which said volumes. He told her he was going to go out across this great nation and present himself to the majesty of the people, show them who he was… and learn more and more still about who they were and what they wanted from him. He choose to do this on America’s railroads, the greatest on Earth. Thus, fully committed, with astonishing energy and high good humor and desire to connect, Harry Truman boarded the Ferdinand Magellan and, at even the tiniest whistle stop, gave them hell…

The nation responded by giving him a smile, a hand shake, and the presidency.

Sadly the candidates have drawn the absolutely wrong conclusion from this event. Harry Truman won not because he whistle-stopped but because he had personal convictions, because he did everything possible to connect with Citizens of the Great Republic, and because he came across as a man of integrity, credibility, and a man who did not just expatiate and make promises, but who actually said what he meant and meant what he said, pledging, not merely promising.

Is there anyone out of rompers who believes that about our candidates as they too “whistle stop”; this time ordinarily in supremely appointed air-conditioned buses, usually in the key state of Ohio? If so, I don’t know this person. And neither do you.

As a result, I have come to the infinitely sad conclusion that neither candidate believes in anything, anything at all, except what is directly related to seizing the White House, the most bully pulpit in the world, and neither one knows how to use it to grasp minds, create visions, and achieve the great successes we expect of our hailed to chief.

That why I am disheartened, dismayed, and increasingly despondent about these men and their vapid campaigns. And I remind them of this: that the truly great create precedents and do not merely follow them. They seize the future and then use the unparalleled resources of both their person and office to achieve success and make this Great Republic greater still. Until this happens, fewer will care, fewer will vote, and more, like me, will become disenchanted by a process that continues to produce so much less than we need and which our Citizens deserve.

In the meantime…

“Take me out to the ball game, Take me out with the crowd: Buy me some peanuts and Cracker Jack, I don’t care if I never get back”

… especially if there’s not a better prize in this box.

About the Author

Harvard-educated Dr. Jeffrey Lant is CEO of Worldprofit, Inc., providing a wide range of online services for small and-home based businesses. Services include home business training, affiliate marketing training, earn-at-home programs, traffic tools, advertising, webcasting, hosting, design, WordPress Blogs and more. Find out why Worldprofit is considered the # 1 online Home Business Training program by getting a free Associate Membership today. Republished with author’s permission by Daniel Fischer http://SuccessClicks.com.

‘Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion…’; the great truth assailed by the little man from Pennsylvania, former U.S. Senator Rick Santorum; John F. Kennedy’s historic address on the matter revisited.

by Dr. Jeffrey Lantby Dr. Jeffrey Lant

Author’s program note. Religious fervor, religious metaphors, religious language, religious dispute, religious assertiveness, religious iconography, religious music all pulsate through every aspect of the Great Republic, its life and affairs. And that is why the Founding Fathers as their first order of business and to establish the tone and substance for all that followed, wrote the First Amendment to the Constitution. In sparse, incisive, resolute, unequivocal language they rendered their bold and well considered opinion thus:

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof, or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.”

These sentiments were the more necessary because of the very vibrancy of religion and all of its manifestations in the Great Republic… for every religion, (because of its adamant belief that its way to God is The way to God), is messianic, exclusive, intolerant, and so potentially divisive, disruptive, even dangerous.

And no one knew this better than the great and thoughtful Founding Fathers who had as their matter of high and abiding significance the preservation of the many great things rendered by religion… whilst avoiding the imperial tendencies of all religions, to uplift themselves, even unto the seizure of the Great Republic, whilst denigrating the rest.

The great problem set, these same Founding Fathers commenced their high business of solving it. For make no mistake about it, the objective of the Founding Fathers was not the crippling control and suppression of religion so much as it was creating an atmosphere and civic establishment in which religions — all religions — might flourish to the glory and benefit of the Great Republic they were crafting and meant to have.

Thus I give you the occasional music for this article, and a better tune one could hardly have for this subject: “Give Me That Old-Time Religion.” It’s a traditional Gospel song dating from 1873. Charles David Tillman took this song, which may have originated as a black folk song, and by his publishing and enthusiasm for its adamant, uplifting message turned it into a staple of white congregations and so it has abided, a joyful manifestation of the Good News.

To get it, go now to any search engine. You’ll find many fine renditions of this song; I prefer the get-up-and-praise Him version belted out by Mahalia Jackson, Hallelujah… for if it was good enough for my father… good enough for my mother… then it’s good enough for me!

The background to the First Amendment.

To a person, the men who constituted the Founding Fathers, were men knowledgeable about religion, its history, uses, practices, and tendencies. As a result, they were haunted, almost to a person, by the damages religion could deliver, as well as its comforts. And they knew, none better, that left to its own devices religion could chill individual inquiry rather than encourage it, could become the harsh means of fettering the human mind, not advancing it. And what they wanted, to the point of obsession, was a land of liberty, not a land where uniformity of view was the order of the day, and was enforced by priests, pastors, and pontiffs; different in their views, the same in their devices for achieving them; working each to control with bell, book, and candle.

They, too, were aware that such a land, so unfettered in its thoughts, a paradise for every believer not just one, had never existed in the history of mankind where uniformity of outlook reigned as the desired objective. As a result the Founding Fathers, here as elsewhere, found themselves on the cutting-edge of this crucial matter of statecraft and belief…. and they gave the matter their utmost consideration… for no question exercised them more that what they could do to place the people of the new republic into a proper, sustained relationship with their common Creator.

They selected a solution Erastian, latitudinarian, tolerant.

Tolerance for all, hegemony and control for none. This became their guiding light , and they found vital sustenance for it amongst the works of Thomas Erastus, (1524-1583), a 16th century German physician and theologian. He held that the punishment of all offenses should be referred to the civil power and that holy communion was open to all. Thus should the church and its ministers be made subservient to the officials of the government, rather than these officials of the government made subservient to the church and its ministers.

They looked, too, to the cool reason of John Locke (1632-1704), who advocated, first and foremost, a tolerance which had, perhaps, never been seen before… a latitudinarian whose profound thoughts once glimpsed became the abiding vision of all sensible people, and the basis for civil peace, not internecine strife.

From such beginnings did the idea of religious tolerance grow, until at last it was written and proclaimed in the First Amendment, as the very essence of what we stood for as a Great Republic and who we wanted to be. Thus as the Founding Fathers surveyed it, they saw their work whole… and knew it to be a great resolution to a great problem, a great policy indeed for the Great Republic.

.. and from the moment of its inception it has done its work…

JFK, admirable in Houston.

Then John Fitzgerald Kennedy ran for president… and many people worried that as a Roman Catholic he would sabotage this verity, pledging instead fealty to the Bishop of Rome, rather than the Great Republic. And so, he went to Houston where before the Greater Houston Ministerial Association he presented himself and his views. The date was September 12, 1960… and it was perhaps his most admirable day on Earth; for on this day he stated with vehemence and resolution these words:

“I believe in an America where the separation of church and state is absolute.” And if, perhaps, he did not persuade all the reverend doctors present (for some were not to be persuaded) he did persuade the people of the Great Republic, who in their turn elected him…thus proving with their ballots the kind of inclusive, tolerant, pacific society they desired and affirmed.

It is this society, this vision, the most profound ever imagined that one little man has challenged, in a way at once crude, graphic and alarming.

“I don’t believe in an America where the separation of church and state are absolute.” Rick Santorum, (College of Saint Mary Magdalen, Warner, New Hampshire, October 2011 and reaffirmed thereafter).

“The idea that the church can have no influence or no involvement in the operation of the state is absolutely antithetical to the objectives and visions of our country… to say that people of faith have no role in the public square? You bet that makes me want to throw up.”

This is the statement of a zealot, a demagogue, a radical… and thus a danger to the community, the comity, the country… and to the Great Republic itself.

The firewall called Michigan held… but barely.

The results are now counted in Michigan which Tuesday, February 28, 2012 held one of the most important presidential primaries ever, and by just the smallest of margins denied Santorum and his radical views, views that would roil the essential verities of the Great Republic and divide the people.

Is this the end of the war then? Alas, no. For this battle, which sensible citizens thought was settled centuries ago by the expansive vision of the Founding Fathers, is under attack by incendiaries like Santorum who mean to light their way to the God they arrogantly suppose they know with autos-da-fe, a ghastly light unto eternity.

That is why the rest of us must remain vigilant, for a right undefended is a right at risk… and this right has been too hard won to be threatened, much less eviscerated and destroyed, by a man like Santorum, for all that he fancies himself the agent of God and his Holy Will.

** What do you think? We invite your comments below.

About the Author

Harvard-educated Dr. Jeffrey Lant is CEO of Worldprofit, Inc., providing a wide range of online services for small and-home based businesses. Services include home business training, affiliate marketing training, earn-at-home programs, traffic tools, advertising, webcasting, hosting, design, WordPress Blogs and more. Find out why Worldprofit is considered the # 1 online Home Business Training program by getting a free Associate Membership today. Republished with author’s permission by Daniel Fischer http://SuccessClicks.com.

Indiana governor Mitch Daniels February 1, 2012 signs first right-to-worklaw in over 10 years… the key is that it’s for a crucial state in the ‘rust belt’.

by Dr. Jeffrey Lant

Author’s program note. When I was a little whippersnapper 60 years ago and more, my young father used to take me on his knee, his only very occasionally used guitar in hand and sing me a song that I hadn’t thought of in all these years. It’s the kind of childhood memory that comes at you when you’re least expecting, bittersweet, tugging at your heart. Now I just cannot get it out of my mind…

The song is the “Wabash Cannonball” originally written in 1882 as “The Great Rock Island Route”, a happy-go-lucky number credited to one J.A. Roff. In 1904 William Kindt rewrote the lyrics, changing the name of the train to the “Wabash Cannonball”.

It’s a pip of a tune with a chorus that makes you glad to be alive…

“Now listen to the jingle, and the rumble, and the roar, As she dashes thro’ the woodland, and speeds along the shore, See the mighty rushing engine, hear her merry bell ring out, As they speed along in safety, on the ‘Wabash Cannonball’.”

… named after the great American main street town of….. Wabash, Indiana, its claim to fame the fact that in 1880 it became the first electrically lighted city on Earth. It is the center of the center state of America, the state that has just tossed a stink bomb into the politics of the Great Republic with its brand-new right-to-work law.

Get into the spirit of this article by going to any search engine, finding one of the many excellent versions; (I prefer the one by Johnny Cash)…. then let ‘er rip…. because you’re riding the rails through the great American heartland, once so prosperous, the pride of the nation, now blighted in so many disheartening ways.

Born in 1947.

In the year of our Lord 1947, at least two significant things occurred: I was born… and the Congress of the Great Republic resoundingly overrode the adamant veto of President Harry S. Truman on a matter of resolute importance to unions. The result was the Taft-Hartley Act, a haymaker by the Republican Party that punched a gaping hole in the closed union shop, thereby providing the U.S. labor movement with an abiding grievance and red-meat for a million stump speeches and union halls. Here’s what Taft-Hartley did to the prevailing National Labor Relations Act.

NLRA dictated that all employees at unionized workplaces must be members of the union as a condition of employment. It turned employee coercion into union power… and as such became a critical component of what transformed the disorganized, scattered Democratic Party into the majority party that ruled the Great Republic under Franklin D. Roosevelt and Harry Truman for 20 years, with still major influence today.

The politics of the matter went like this: To wed the millions of laboring people to his governing coalition, Roosevelt cut a series of deals with union leaders, including giving them the right of introducing the closed shop, wherein every worker — whatever their personal views and politics — was forced to join the union… and finance it with their dues.

This gave the unions raw political power and Democrats a leg-up for local, state, and federal elections where this muscle delivered victory after victory. But it also created an outraged, seething menace from people who didn’t like Roosevelt (and despised Truman)… patriots who vociferously demanded to know how such coercion, the stuff of Red revolution and godless Communism, could possibly be justified in the Land of Washington, Jefferson and Lincoln.

One side said that employee coercion, fueling union power, brought good jobs and the realization of the American dream… the other demanded liberty and unfettered freedom of choice. Both arguments had valid points… which made the resulting battle bloody, bitter, protracted and internecine, a bona fide civil war… which Indiana has now re-opened, to the outrage of the unions…

The matter was further complicated because of the unconcealed contempt the leaders of each side felt for their opponents, dictated by the unyielding, abiding, fathomless scorn and disdain of Senator Robert Taft (R-Ohio) (1889-1953) for President Truman. “To err is Truman,” Mrs. Taft said… The words Senator Taft used are unprintable. No quarter asked for, no quarter given by anyone, war to the death.

Taft-Hartley became the crucial weapon in that war.

Taft-Hartley outlawed the closed shop. The union shop rule, which required all new employees to join the union after a minimum period of time, is also illegal. As such, it is illegal for any employer to force an employee to join a union.

Section 14(b) of the Taft-Hartley Act goes further and authorizes individual states (but not local governments such as cities and counties) to outlaw union (as well as so-called agency) shops. Under the open shop rule, an employee cannot be compelled to join or pay the equivalent of dues to a union, nor can the employee be fired if he joins the union. In other words, the employee has the right to work, regardless of whether or not he is a member or financial contributor to such a union.

22 states ban “forced unionism”… 27 states and the District of Columbia do not.

Proponents of right-to-work laws, based on freedom of association, went to work with a will signing up one state after another. The states they persuaded reads like the playbook of the Republican Party, including Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nebraska, Nevada, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, and Wyoming. There the great roll call of right-to-work states stopped, until now… with the adhesion of Indiana.

Why did Indiana act now… and why does it matter?

The signature tune of the people they call Hoosiers is “Back Home Again In Indiana” (1917) … and there’s nothing more domestic, more American, more representative of the Great Republic, than these sane, decent, responsible folk. They are the very salt of the Earth, the bedrock of who we are and what we believe in. And these folks in recent years have watched as the land — and lifestyle they love — diminish, as one job after another ends, so many shipped overseas, all gone forever. And as the jobs left, their outrage and despair waxed.

To sustain the people, to maintain the land, there must be jobs… and so the people demanded jobs… seeing the bloated unions no longer as job providers but as menaces to their revival and reconstruction. Their representatives (in the persons of the majority Republican Party in the legislature) heard this plea… and essentially said by their actions that Indiana, to compete again and prosper again, must be prepared to face economic facts, no matter how unpleasant. Thus, unions must give back, divest, rethink… instead of merely waving placards, opposing this, blocking that, fulminating, never solving. For the issue here is and always will be the welfare of the people, not merely the welfare of the unions.

Thus the unions face the growing disbelief in towns like Wabash that they are not up to the job at hand, the job of making Indiana, a key industrial state, livable again. And so as the unions argue against their fate in Indiana, the “Wabash Cannonball” surges anew… to Ohio, Michigan, Illinois… an engine of change for a nation that needs it, the ghost of Senator Robert Taft riding in triumph.

“Oh, the Eastern states are dandy, so the Western people say Chicago, Rock Island, St. Louis by the way To the lakes of Minnesota where the rippling waters fall No changes to be taken on the Wabash Cannonball.” All aboard…

** We invite you to submit your comments below.

About the Author

Harvard-educated Dr. Jeffrey Lant is CEO of Worldprofit, Inc., providing a wide range of online services for small and-home based businesses. Services include home business training, affiliate marketing training, earn-at-home programs, traffic tools, advertising, webcasting, hosting, design, WordPress Blogs and more. Find out why Worldprofit is considered the # 1 online Home Business Training program by getting a free Associate Membership today. Republished with author’s permission by Daniel Fischer http://SuccessClicks.com.

‘Hey, look me over’ as two-timin’ Newt stops Romney’s coronation coach in South Carolina.

by Dr. Jeffrey Lant

Author’s program note. There can be only one song peppy enough, bouncy enough, irresistible enough, a song that is the very essence of what is best about America… that we get hit and hit again and hit again… yet get up, dust ourselves off and do what’s necessary to win, thank you very much.

That song is “Hey, look me over,” from the 1960 musical “Wildcat” (book by Richard Nash; lyrics by Caroline Leigh; music by Cy Coleman); and it fits the mood today at the headquarters of Newt Gingrich, the man who squeezed the bitter lemon of his contorted and messy relations with women into a lemonade sweet enough even the good Christian folk could drink by the gallon.

Thus, go to any search engine now. Find this tune and play it loud and proud… For, in the final analysis, we love the people Teddy Roosevelt described as “the man in the arena,” the people who have to win because losing is unthinkable. Even if we have to hold our noses when we get too close, we just can’t help admiring them, getting off our posteriors and cheering them to the echo. And the GOP citizens of South Carolina did just that.

They decided to vote for an idea… the idea that it is “we, the people” who make presidents… not pollsters, not handlers, not pundits and prognosticators… and if you don’t like it, that’s your problem. Not theirs. Thus did Romney get his gourmet, tax- deductible lunch handed to him… his contrived designer jeans ripped, torn, muddy, and a black eye to boot. This doesn’t mean he won’t be nominated, but it most assuredly means he will not be, cannot be nominated the way he’s gone about the job so far. South Carolina has dictated that if nothing more.

Prize day.

To sketch this influential event in a way that even third-graders could understand, consider this: Mitt Romney is the school kid we all hated; hated with our heart, soul and brain, for we knew — and could see evidence every single day, every day he raised his hand and knew the answer — that he was the kid the teachers idolized, the one they could with abiding pride point to and say, “That’s our boy.” Whereupon the boy would beam… and our hatred would grow… and we’d dream delicious ways of taking him down a peg or two… the faster, the sooner, the most abashing, the better.

Then one day one of the kids couldn’t take it take it anymore… and he pops, goes nuts. It’s the day school prizes are awarded; Mitt getting the lion’s share. It was the day something must be done… the time for mere rage gone; the need for action this day nigh.

Thus does this kid (call him Newt) see picture-perfect, not-a-hair-out-of-place Mitt coming to school in his chauffeur driven car and goes postal; he decides enough is enough… that Mitt (whose very name he abominates and loathes) must be taken out… but without of course implicating himself. Thus with a “sorry, man” at the ready scruffy, incorrigible Newt maneuvers Mitt into the nearest, stinkiest, festering mud, thereby rendering the apple of every teacher’s eye an unholy mess when he walks into class…

How much sympathy does ol’ Mitt get, for all that he’s the victim? None, absolutely none at all… and they elect Newt Student Body President in a landslide… because, because… Mitt makes them sick, every last one of them.

And, friends, this is what happened yesterday in South Carolina… the state oh-so- clearly indicated that they want candidates who fight for their favors, including the ultimate favor of getting to whack on their behalf, the man each and every one of them despises… Barack Obama, president of the Great Republic… for make no mistake about it, the fractured, snarling, uncooperative members of the Grand Old Party want brother Barack’s head on a platter… this is and has been since Inauguration Day 2009, their first and preeminent desire.

And they aren’t convinced Mitt can bring home the bacon… stinging the incumbent, slashing the incumbent, wounding the incumbent, humiliating the incumbent, for that’s what they insist their candidate deliver… like Salome with the head of John the Baptist, a reference every Evangelical knows and savors.

So, what has the great Palmetto State, home of nullifier John C. Calhoun and war profiteer Rhett Butler, the state that lobbed the first treasonable shot, thereby launching a war anything but civil, what has this state said?

First, that the Romney Coronation is off. That the carefully contrived, minutely controlled candidacy of Massachusetts’ least popular governor has ended. Mitt is going to have to do what Mitt hates: engaging in a bare-knuckles brawl that must show the GOP he is their boy; a man who can deliver the red-meat the much challenged and riven party craves. For these folks, rabid revolutionaries all and Constitution-hugging patriots as they are, are not about to go gentle into this good-night; they insist upon a candidate who can turn their white hot rage about the wrongful direction of the Great Republic into a lifetime lock on 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue and the nation’s agenda.

They look at Mitt and want to puke… What kind of American is he, they wonder, who wants the most precious of their gifts, their vote for president; but who, they feel in their gut, not only does not like or understand them, but faces them with incomprehension and even disdain? They know that a dinner-party with Mitt and his dutiful, adoring wife (a role model impossible for today’s woman) would be proper, dull, an unhappy memory for all… for all that Mitt might say just the right things with gestures approved by his stable of handlers.

And so while Republican hosts may yet dine with this stiff, control freak and paragon, they are afraid, and rightly so, that there won’t be any pleasure in it, no fun, no grandiose joys and memories; worst of all, no White House.

And this is why the GOP has gone through the long, exhaustive, often abjectly humiliating process of vetting one potential presidential nominee after another, all ardently desired and even adored at the outset; all found wanting and disquieting in so very many ways.

Will these folks be happy with Newt, his many wives, his inexplicable financial arrangements, his blatant self-service and prevarications? Maybe not. But he is serving their purposes right now — forcing Mitt out of his bubble, demanding he get real on why his association with Bain Capital unnerves so many at a time when he has so egregiously mishandled the matter of his tax returns. We all know, and Romney knows we know, that what we will find when he at last makes them public — no evidence of illegality but a text-book case of how the super-wealthy gain and use loop-holes on which they build their empires.

Newt has all of Romney’s many inadequacies going for him… and he has, mirabile dictu, brigades of Southern women for him, too. They already knew that men are lyin’, cheatin’, low-down scoundrels. But now it’s official. Messin’ around with women is no big deal, no sin at all, whatever the Good Book says… just keep our taxes low, hold our Founding Fathers high, make us as special as we see ourselves, and above all love us… something Mitt Romney just cannot do…

About the Author

Harvard-educated Dr. Jeffrey Lant is CEO of Worldprofit, Inc., providing a wide range of online services for small and-home based businesses. Services include home business training, affiliate marketing training, earn-at-home programs, traffic tools, advertising, webcasting, hosting, design, WordPress Blogs and more. Find out why Worldprofit is considered the # 1 online Home Business Training program by getting a free Associate Membership today. Republished with author’s permission by Daniel Fischer http://SuccessClicks.com. Check out Info Cash -> http://khdfshops.cpc100.hop.clickbank.net