Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Sumner's Explanation of The Forgotten Man - Revised for the 21st Century

Sumner's Explanation of The Forgotten Man - Revised for the 21st Century
By Joshua Lyons 9/25/09

As soon as A observes something which seems to him to be wrong, from which X is suffering, A talks it over with B, and A and B then propose to get a law passed – with the praise of Y – to remedy the evil and help X. Their law always proposes to determine what C shall do for X or, in the better case, what A, B and C shall do for X. As for A and B, who get a law to make themselves do for X what they are willing to do for him, we have nothing to say except that they might better have done it without any law, but C is forced to comply with the new law. All this is done while Y looks on with glee and proclaims that A and B are so good for helping poor X.

A is the politician
B is the humanitarian, special interest, do-gooder, reformer, social speculator, etc.
C is The Forgotten Man (i.e. you, me, us)
X is the downtrodden, the oppressed, the little guy, the misunderstood, etc.
Y is the Mainstream Media

In other words…
As soon as THE POLITICIAN observes something which seems to him to be wrong, from which THE DOWNTRODDEN is suffering, THE POLITICIAN talks it over with THE HUMANITARIAN, and THE POLITICIAN and THE HUMANITARIAN then propose to get a law passed – with the praise of THE MAINSTREAM MEDIA – to remedy the evil and help THE DOWNTRODDEN. Their law always proposes to determine what THE FORGOTTEN MAN shall do for THE DOWNTRODDEN or, in the better case, what THE POLITICIAN, THE HUMANITARIAN and THE FORGOTTEN MAN shall do for THE DOWNTRODDEN. As for THE POLITICIAN and THE HUMANITARIAN, who get a law to make themselves do for THE DOWNTRODDEN what they are willing to do for him, we have nothing to say except that they might better have done it without any law, but THE FORGOTTEN MAN is forced to comply with the new law. All this is done while THE MAINSTREAM MEDIA looks on with glee and proclaims that THE POLITICIAN and THE HUMANITARIAN are so good for helping poor THE DOWNTRODDEN.

The preceding commentary was based on William Graham Sumner’s explanation of The Forgotten Man.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

FNP Article 9/20/09

I decided to discuss this Letter to the Editor (LTE) here instead of the back-and-forth in the comment section. Here's the LTE: http://www.fredericknewspost.com/sections/opinion/display_lte.htm?StoryID=95470

Essentially, this LTE confirms exactly the premise of the LTE, that the country may be approaching a point of being hopelessly divided...at some level. Both camps, as I expected, arrived in the comment section; those holding to a "Living Constitution" position and those of us supporting an Originalist view of the Constitution. In this regard, the battle lines could not be more stark; sadly, there are few national leaders in either party that genuinely support the originalist view. At least their voting records would not demonstrate they're commitment.

So, what do we do here at We Surround Them Frederick?
  1. Remember, you're never going to win 100% of the people to the originalist view of the Constitution. Don't get frustrated or discouraged if you don't persuade every friend or family member to your view point. That's not the goal and we do not need 100% of the people to prevail. When I wrote the LTE, I knew a certain number of people would take an opposing view. What we need is enough people to gain power and reorient the debate to one that we can win; namely, that the Founders did not envision a HUGE, all-powerful central government. If this becomes the debate, freedom loving citizens will respond.
  2. Remember that we're up against decades of entrenched ideas about the role of government in our lives. We've all been raised (even us grey-hairs) under a school system that never taught the Constitution and the principles around it's founding. We've been raised to believe the vast bloated central government is the way it should be and have been told to ignore history that informs us that there has never been a liberty minded country with a large and pervasive central government...we will be no different.
  3. Remember, we're at the very early stages of the battle and they (the Living Constitution) crowd have had a 100 year jump on us. This will not be won in months and there will be many losses along the way. Our responsibility is to hold to our principles, not despair, and keep pressing ahead.
  4. Finally, muster courage to engage your friends, family, co-workers. Learn about the principles of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. Read...read...read. Be prepared.

Folks, it has been an absolute highlight of my life to see what we have already accomplished as a group...together. Who'd have thought that by clicking a simple button 6 months ago, we'd have found 270 like minded people, made new friends, organized local TEA parties, launched a radio show, and have become a resource to the community for Constitutional issues. Who'd of thought.

This is just the beginning, we're getting our feet under us and while the future will be full of ups and downs, one thing I know for absolute sure, together, we're going to force our community to confront the realities of the consequences of a LARGE and BLOATED federal government.

Keep talking to your friends, invite them, connect them. My hope is by the end of March 2010, one year after We Surround Them Frederick was formed, there are 1,000 members connected to us.

Blessings to you all,

Mark Kreslins

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Do we just throw away the Constitution...?

The Federalist and Anti-Federalist papers have a great deal to do with how we ‘interpret’ the Constitution – as does the Declaration of Independence. They are interdependent with regard to how we understand the intentions of the founders. Thomas Jefferson wisely instructed that, "On every question of construction [of The Constitution], let us carry ourselves back to the time when the Constitution was adopted, recollect the spirit manifested in the debates, and instead of trying what meaning may be squeezed out of the text, or invented against it, conform to the probable one in which it was passed." What has occurred through manipulation and injection of humanism, progressivism, lust for power, and greed is the systematic divergence from the founders original intent. Society will cease to function without a constant order…when the law becomes a moving target – those without integrity will surely take advantage of the chaos that ensues.

In his FNP As I See It column, Mark has accurately laid out the overarching problem that we face as a nation. Until this is addressed and we decide what guidelines to follow – our exchange of power from one side to the other will ultimately divide us beyond repair. WST Frederick has the goal of bringing this topic into the local and national conversation and ultimately bring us back to our roots of a limited Federal gov’t and robust State gov’t.

Please read Mark's article here: http://www.fredericknewspost.com/sections/opinion/display_lte.htm?storyid=95470

[From the Frederick News-Post's "As I see it" column A-9 this date]

The real national debate - from a local perspective

I started "We Surround Them Frederick" on March 3 by clicking "join" on Meetup.com. I never imagined it would grow in size and influence like it has. Perhaps this suggests the status quo is no longer holding, and people are growing more and more dissatisfied with their options, whether Democrat or Republican.

Why do I believe this? The truth is, the current system of governance perpetually leaves one half of a country ticked off and feeling oppressed. This raises the question: Is this really what the founders intended when they signed the Declaration of Independence? Now some, who have never taken the time to read the writings of Jefferson , Madison and the others, may wonder what the heck I'm talking about and therein lies the problem.

We talk as though we all believe in the Constitution and adhere to it, yet did they really create a country where one faction gets to "rule" over another? Did they really intend Congress to manipulate three clauses in Article 1 Section 8 and rack up a projected future $99 trillion debt?

[yes, this is a correct calculated figure for our real long-term liability]

So when I read the comments in The FNP following the article on the Sept. 11 Tea Party, I was a bit taken aback by the vitriol and ask again: Is this really what the founders intended?

Those who advocate for an original intent position for the Declaration and Constitution are criticized as "crybabies," "crazy loons" or, my favorite, I am accused of belonging to a site (wesurroundthem.com) that I'd never even heard of before the commenter mentioned it in his post. This is very revealing of where we are in our public discourse.

So, at the Sept. 11 Tea Party I never mentioned the word Democrat, or liberal, or Republican or right-winger. Instead, I pointed at Congress, with Rep. Roscoe Bartlett sitting off to my right, and properly identified Congress as the real problem. They're the ones in cooperation with big corporations who have saddled us with a debt we can never pay. Some of you might think that's fine; not me. So, on March 3, 2009, I clicked the button and the immortal phrase from "Field of Dreams" became a reality: "If you build it, they will come."

Perhaps a more productive exercise would be to help advance the ultimate argument we're confronting as a country. Simply put, are we still governed by the fundamental principles described in the Declaration and Constitution -- or are we not? If not, then there are consequences. One untenable consequence: to have one ideology oppress the other, which is fundamentally wrong. I see only bad outcomes with this course.

So, if the chasm is just too large, cooler heads should prevail and our country's leaders should gather in good faith to openly discuss 1776 and 1787 afresh. For just as there are Hamilton's legions today advocating a larger central government, there are also Jefferson 's legions wanting to eviscerate the size and reach of the federal government. I suggest that before lines get too dramatically drawn, cooler heads should prevail just as they did back in 1787.

Until this happens, I personally will continue to advocate Madison's position so well articulated in Federalist 45, to wit, "The powers delegated by the proposed Constitution to the federal government are few and defined. Those which are to remain in the State governments are numerous and indefinite.

"The former will be exercised principally on external objects, as war, peace, negotiation, and foreign commerce; with which last the power of taxation will, for the most part, be connected. The powers reserved to the several States will extend to all the objects which, in the ordinary course of affairs, concern the lives, liberties, and properties of the people, and the internal order, improvement, and prosperity of the State."


Mark E. Kreslins is the founder of We Surround Them Frederick , and is the co-host of the radio program "The Forgotten Men," which airs on 930 WFMD on Saturdays from noon to 1 p.m. He resides in Frederick .

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Sunday, September 13, 2009

9/11 Rally Meets the Tea Party

[from The Tentacle September 14, 2009]

9/11 Rally Meets the Tea Party

Steven R. Berryman

The convergence of local politics with national is impossible to escape now, even to the casual observer. With the timeframe overlap between the newest “Tea Party” style rally, the observances of 9/11s “Patriot Day,” and municipal primary elections tomorrow in Frederick, the relationship between party and constituent becomes even more blurred.

Saturday’s Washington Post led with “
GOP Sees Protest As an Opportunity” in the best possible position above the fold:

“Searching for ways to compete with Democrats after two consecutive electoral drubbings, Republicans have moved past earlier uncertainty about the protesters, who organized nationwide rallies this summer that have threatened Democratic health-care plans and eroded President Obama's standing with the public.”

Perhaps so, but I contend that the “Independents” currently supporting protest movements around the country still gravitate to the GOP, but – for various reasons – they are still very much “up for grabs.”

Flash back to last Friday, to the newly renovated Baker Park band shell; Tea Party Number Three got into full swing at 3 P.M. in the pouring rain. Six hundred faithful shuffled in and out over the next two hours.

I showed up a tad late, but the event was broadcast live so I missed nothing… and thought to wear my FDNY hat, a souvenir from Ground Zero in New York; American flag pin attached. And I was prepared to say a few words should the opportunity arise.

Tracking comments on a related Frederick News-Post article, I had been concerned about naysayers claiming a protest was not apropos for a 9/11 anniversary. They could not have been more wrong, as real patriots were in attendance, and were worried about the unbridled growth of government, the related consequences, and divergence from our Constitutional founding principles.

Much like the last two efforts, this local protest rally was hosted by WFMD radio’s enigmatic afternoon host, Blaine Young, and was coordinated by We Surround Them – Frederick’s Mark Kreslins and Joshua Lyons, the group’s founders.

[They both gave rousing speeches that can be found on

Frederick County Sheriff Chuck Jenkins gave a key invited speech, and appeared specifically as the sheriff, and made a note of it. Our sheriff is a faithful Republican, but that fact was not germane to the conversation at hand.

The elected official closest to the people” – as he rightly puts it – arrived with a montage speech that begun with covering the origins of the 9/11 attacks, a solemn remembrance, and managed to blend it into aspects and consequences of our current Constitutional overreach.

His concerns for a federal government run amok include our new financial liability, resulting in a vulnerability, with the Communist Chinese owning so much of our national debt, while selling us cheap goods at WalMart.

The undeniable cause of the above being the reckless spending of TARP bailouts, faux stimulus to select economic sectors, and energy “cap and trade,” which is vainly masked wealth redistribution for political gain.

“We are doing to ourselves, what a radical regime has already tried to do; to bleed ourselves to death with wasteful spending.” Later Dr. John Vitarello confirmed that the attempted HR3200 healthcare reforms would easily add $1.7 trillion to our national debt.

Fiscal conservatism surely has more value and relevance as an issue today than ever.

The creation of a brigade on the home front by our Department of Homeland Security (DHS) bothered the sheriff.

Although not quite the “brown shirts” of a National Socialist Party from another day, the ominous overreach is redundant, and oversteps local law enforcement, which is already in place and willing to adapt to contingencies such as national emergencies.

Who remembers still when President Barack Obama promised us a Civilian Security Force to match our National Guard in strength? Is this some prelude to internment camps for dissenters?

The unanswered questions give one pause.

How well did an engorged Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) deal with Hurricane Katrina? Imagine how this type of oversight would impact a Johns Hopkins medial facility!

On healthcare reform, the rally featured an in-depth half hour talk by one of our finest local surgeons:

Outspoken cardiologist Dr. Vitarello is adamantly against a healthcare reform that would create a public option. His vision of a plan that would serve the people consists of one in which “the patient is the customer, and it’s all about the patient.”...

Saturday, September 12, 2009

September 11th Tea Party Speech "Enemies Within"

September 11th Tea Party Speech "Enemies Within"
by Joshua Lyons

Link to the speech:

Statism is the doctrine of giving a centralized government extensive reign on economic, political, and related controls at the cost of individual liberty. If this sounds familiar, you know…that we have enemies within.

These enemies have infiltrated our party system, our labor unions, and our non-profits. Around the country they have infiltrated our state and local gov’ts – our state legislatures, our city councils, and local Boards of Education. They have infiltrated our US Congress, our federal government agencies, and specialized posts directly appointed by our Executive Branch. I would venture to say that many of these people don’t even know what their participation and actions are producing. But there are many more that do know and are actively working toward systematically revamping our nation. These are the individuals who make statements, as our president did as a candidate on Oct. 30th, 2008. His proclamation was – and I quote – “we are 5 days away from fundamentally transforming the Unites States of America.”

The American sleeping giant has finally awoken partly because of these arrogant and blatant statements made in public by the radical proponents of Statism. This is why we are here – this is why we are compelled to gather together. The message of the Tea Party is of our liberties and what we must do to recapture them. The T-E-A acronym in TEA Party has come to be identified with “Taxed Enough Already.” I would like to suggest a new meaning for the T-E-A acronym. Tyranny Exists Already!

Don’t confuse my statement with hyperbole. To do so, would be a great folly and would play right into the hands of our opponents. Tyranny does not always show the familiar face of guillotines and firing squads. Sincere humanitarian concerns that are continuously acted upon for the good of the people (at the expense of their liberty), will only lead us down the path toward happy-faced tyranny. It is our civic duty to root out these acts and hold them up high for all to see. As Edmund Burke said, “All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.”

Hate crimes bills, Cap & Trade legislation, Fed wire-tapping of citizens, increased Social programs…
I ask you…WHERE DOES IT STOP?!?!?!? It doesn’t…it won’t…

If we do not fight for liberty now, I see a time in the not too distant future when we will look back and say, “Is the material comfort and superficial security I have – really worth the overbearing regulation and burdensome rules I’m forced to live by?” Let me remind you something Benjamin Franklin wisely said so many years ago, “They who would give up an essential liberty for temporary security, deserve neither liberty or security.”

If we do not reverse the federal government’s rapid usurpation of power, we will have neither security nor liberty. We will experience a tyranny not seen in our lifetimes.

Washington must stick to the restricted authority that We the People consented to in our Constitution! And our damned state gov’t officials need to do their job and stop the monsters in Washington from stealing power not granted to them!

We would be wise to avoid constantly referring to the current environment as being Communism, Socialism, and Marxism. This is how the other side marginalizes us because the average American is still not plugged in and does not understand what is occurring. What we’re experiencing is Social Democracy. Social Democracy is the use of democratic means to achieve a gradual transition from capitalism to socialism. People…we are in the period between Republic and pick your “ism”

So you ask…who is the enemy within – who are problem? It is the deceptive radicals – these Statists!

They are the radicals!
They are the extremists!
They are ultimately our oppressors!

Those of us who are saying “enough is enough!” are not trying to stop anyone from succeeding; we are solely and uniformly declaring that “we don’t want our country fundamentally transformed!”

We are not opposed to progress…we are opposed to what progress means to the radicals!I say today marks a defining moment. This is the day that we stop throwing around the loose term liberal. That term may encompass the extreme Statists, but it also includes so many people that don’t fit into the real problem group. Think about it…it includes those who simply don’t want to be labeled selfish or intolerant, those who have well intentions and just want to help people…the list goes on. But most of them are the result of the problem, not the root cause. The root cause is the extremists who began this ball rolling at the beginning of the 20th century and continue to push progressivism under the guise of liberalism. We must be specific to call out the right people. Those people who we are in opposition to – we must now properly refer to them as Progressive Radicals!

Sides are being drawn and if we do not begin distinguishing the correct enemy now, we will forever be marginalized and that will lead to their ultimate victory. However, I have faith in this movement…I have faith in you! I know we can make this important distinction and I know we will win!

As I did the last time we gathered…I’ll close with a poem by Milton Mayer that you may know. While you hear this, do not focus on the figure heads of that era or ours…but recall the snowball effect of recent events that began in the fall of 2008 and have gained unprecedented momentum since then.

"In Germany, they came first for the Communists,
And I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Communist;

And then they came for the trade unionists,
And I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a trade unionist;

And then they came for the Jews,
And I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Jew;

And then... they came for me...
And by that time there was no one left to speak up."

And so I promise you…I will not be inactive. I will not stay silent.
I will stand up! I will speak up!Because for me and my posterity…there WILL be LIBERTY!!