Conservatives Keep Losing Because They’re Reading The Wrong Books

For the past four years. conservatives have worried more about being right while liberals worried about winning. We all know how that worked out.

It doesn’t matter how right you are if you’re powerless.Right now we are.


I didn’t think so.


After four years of 5,000 Leap and Constitution study groups, of Constitutional workshops, and rallies in the park, let’s make a vow to ourselves and to each other: We’re Done With Losing.

Here are the books I challenge you to read in the next six months. Hold study groups on these tomes. Get people excited about winning a damn race here and there.

I won’t review. I’ll give you the list. Amazon’s pretty good about turning shoppers into buyers.


Connected: The Surprising Power of Our Social Networks and How They Shape Our Lives

Millennials Rising: The Next Great Generation

The Fourth Turning

The Victory Lab: The Secret Science of Winning Campaigns

The Blueprint: How the Democrats Won Colorado (and Why Republicans Everywhere Should Care)

Thinking, Fast and Slow

Steve Jobs

The Next 100 Years: A Forecast for the 21st Century

Thinking Strategically: The Competitive Edge in Business, Politics, and Everyday Life

Imagine: How Creativity Works

The Dip: A Little Book That Teaches You When to Quit (and When to Stick)

Tribes: We Need You to Lead Us

These books are not about the Constitution or the wages of socialism. You already know all you need to know about those things.

These books are about winning. If you don’t start winning, it won’t matter what you else you know or believe.

P.S. If you object to any of these titles because they’re by or about a liberal, you’re the problem.

Covenant of Liberty Is Available Now

Covenant of Liberty is the best American history I’ve read in years.

Michael Patrick Leahy, among a very small group of patriots who hatched the first round of Tea Parties in February 2009, documents the US Government’s 230 year history of Constitutional infidelity.

My full review will be finished soon, but don’t wait: buy Covenant of Liberty today.

Mike Leahy was the keynote speaker on day one of the 3rd Anniversary Tea Party in St. Louis and has been a great friend and ally to STLTPC in our continuing fight for liberty.

Buy TWO copies—one to keep and one to lend.  Everyone needs to read this Covenant of Liberty.

Where Were You When Obama Nullified the Constitution?

Most Americans know more about forensic evidence in the Casey Anthony case than they do about the Constitution.  That ignorance gave Barack Obama the hubris to end constitutional government in the United States. He did it, and you probably didn’t even notice. Obama_DictatorOver the course of a week, Barack Obama made a series of so-called recess appointments. In the process, he and his henchmen in Eric Holder’s Justice Department effectively nullified the US Constitution.

The Constitution separates the federal government into three co-equal branches: executive (president), legislative (Congress), and judicial (courts).

Article I of the Constitution gives each House of Congress the power to make the rules under which it operates.

Each House may determine the rules of its proceedings, punish its members for disorderly behavior, and, with the concurrence of two thirds, expel a member.

One of the the rules each House sets for itself involves recess.  The Senate has rules governing its recesses; the House of Representatives governs its own.

But Obama Administration, through  the Justice Department, overruled the Senate’s rules on recesses.

Even the liberal New York Times found this dictatorial move troubling, recognizing that the White House has overturned a Senate rule:

On Wednesday, Mr. Obama went where Mr. Bush had declined to go. He invoked his constitutional right to recess appointments to install four nominees — the first director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Richard Cordray, and three members of the National Labor Relations Board — effectively calling the pro forma Senate session illegitimate.

Its experts agree that Obama has nullified the Constitutional power of the Senate to advise on and consent to certain presidential appointments:

Republicans, lawyers and parliamentary experts say the move, if it survives potential legal challenges, could herald an end to the Senate’s constitutionally guaranteed right to advice and consent.

It’s easy for the left to shout “hyperbole” when confronted with terrifying evidence of Obama’s aims. This naked power grab exposes the sorry state of Constitutional government in the United States.  It demands drastic action by the courts and Congress and the people.

I see no reason why Congress, business, government employees, and citizens would obey any ruling, regulation, or requirement issued from the illegitimate offices filled without the Senate’s advice and consent. No one is required to obey an illegally appointed official, just as no one is required to obey an illegal order in the military. (In fact, a member of the military is required to disobeyillegal orders.)

The most significant of these appointments is the frighteningly powerful office Consumer Financial Protection Bureau—an office with the power to fine private businesses up to $1 million per day.

I also call on all Missouri and Illinois candidates to the US House or Senate to publicly state their position on these anti-Constitutional appointments.

Here’s what Constitutional scholar Mark Levin says:

The President of the United States is trashing the Constitution now day in and day out.

What do you think?

Read More on Heritage Foundation.

Image source:

Obama’s Contempt for the Rule of Law

When he identified the three branches of government as President, House, and Senate, obama-lgWas Chuck Schumer confused, or did he accurately state the Obama administration’s intent to subjugate the Judicial Branch of government?  It seems the White House no longer considers the Judicial Branch the equal of the Executive.

In two cases—the Gulf oil drilling ban and Obamacare—the White House refuses to obey ruling from federal judges.  In New Orleans, federal judge Martin Feldman found the White House in contempt for its re-imposition of oil drilling bans after his previous ruling to the contrary.  Meanwhile, the government has refused to obey a Florida judge’s declaratory relief ruling over Obamacare. 

It’s not unusual for dictators to simply ignore court orders they don’t like.  But it’s very unusual in the United States. It indicates to me that the era of Constitutional government is over as citizens can no longer rely on injunctive relief from tyranny. 

A decade ago, Barack Obama told Chicago Public Radio the believes the U.S. Constitution “is a fundamentally flawed document.”  In that interview, he expressed his further belief that radicals who attempted to undermine the Constitution through the courts were misguided. 

Today we’re learning Obama’s preferred method of ending Constitutional law: naked aggression.

Soon, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear and rule on the Constitutionality of Obamacare. Many observers believe the court will find the individual mandate unconstitutional.  Based on his previous contempt for the rule of law, we have no reason to believe Obama would obey the Supreme Court’s ruling.

What’s the Constitutional Standing of a City?

Many of the people who support eliminating state oversight of the St. Louis Board of Police Commissioners are not conservatives.  Decidedly not.

There are some good conservatives who disagree over the Board of Police Commissioners for the City of St. Louis. I’ve heard some of these conservative make some strong arguments for abolishing the board or relinquishing it to St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay.

Some of the arguments in favor of so-called “home rule” are flat out false.  The biggest fallacy is the claim that local control is a Constitutional principle.

States are the only political sub-division mentioned in the Constitution.  Some claim that people are a second, but that doesn’t make sense.  People are not political subdivisions, but the earthly source of all political power. People, alone, may create political institutions.  Where the Constitution mentions “the People,” it is simply asserting powers that are reserved explicitly by the people.

So the Constitution divides the country as such: the United States and the respective States. 

Technically, the states have no Constitutional requirement to further subdivide.  A state could be nothing but a state.  It could authorize no cities, no counties.  Each state must create United States House of Representative districts, but those boundaries are irrespective of cities and counties. 

The principle of home rule has no Constitutional basis.  Supporters of abolishing state oversight of police boards practice deception when they hint otherwise.

I am confident that we will soon learn who is really behind the current home rule initiative.  When that information comes out, those supporting the initiative will have little choice but to switch sides. 

More to follow.  In the meantime, don’t be deceived.

Ezra Klein and the Dead Constitution

Clearly a fan of understatement, Ezra Klein once ran a blog called “Not Geniuses.” Now, of course, he demonstrates his ignorance on MSNBC. 

Last week, Klein unwittingly advanced the cause of dead constitutions. He did a  better job than any proponent could.  He said:

The issue with the Constitution is that the text is confusing because it was written more than a hundred years ago.

(William F. Buckley once described a statement like Klein’s as evoking of the sort of pity  one feels for the ignorance of animals.)

Getting past Klein’s ignorance and cognitive feebleness (some massive obstacles to circumvent), we see he’s dropped a gem of an argument in favor of dead constitutions. 

By “dead,” I mean that the meaning doesn’t change with the changing of the seasons.  Proponents of a “living Constitution,” such as Klein and his not-genius friends, believe that the Constitution has no meaning.  Rather, they wish the whims and fancies of the day to guide an oligarchy of judicial rulers to determine the definition of life and everything surrounding it. 

Wise men, like Jonah Goldberg understand that the founders intended, and reason demands, a dead Constitution

The case for dead constitutions is simple. They bind us to a set of rules for everybody. Recall the recent debate about the filibuster. The most powerful argument the Democrats could muster was that if you get rid of the traditional right of the minority in the Senate to bollix up the works, the Democrats will deny that right to Republicans the next time they’re in the majority (shudder)

Whether I write “Carthego delenda est” or “Ceterum censeo Carthaginem esse delendam,” the meaning is identical today as it was when Cato the Elder said it 2000 years ago.  “Carthage must be destroyed.”  (For Klein’s edification, 2000 years is even more than “over 100 years.”)

We call Latin a “dead language,” not because it fails to convey life, but because its meaning is set in stone, chiseled in granite, as it were, with “U”s that like “V”s.   The advantage of a dead language is that the author’s intent remains understandable for all eternity.

If men like Ezra Klein find the Unites States Constitution confusing, it is not because the Constitution changed over the 223 years of its existence—but because Klein and his ilk refuse to understand the meaning of the words. 

(Actually, it’s more likely that Klein has determined the meaning of the words, found that meaning in direct opposition to his tyrannical goals, and decided that playing stupid (superbly) would best advance his collectivist goals.)

To say that we cannot determine the intent of those who ratified the Constitution is to say that all language is meaningless. That’s great mental masturbation for the Derrida’s of the world, but offers nothing to people live real lives.

According to Klein’s reasoning, whoever wrote the Christmas song Deck the Halls meant to imply that men in the 19th century at Christmas time dressed to imply homosexuality. Yes, that’s absurd—just as absurd as Klein’s belief that we cannot know what was intended by the statement “Congress shall have the power to lay and collect taxes.” 

Dead Constitutions, like dead languages, give us a fixed point upon which to navigate. Living Constitutions create massive confusion—the kind currently enveloping Ezra Klein’s feeble mind.

To the Constitution!  May it remain dead forever.

The Tea Party’s Real Purpose Is . . .

We talk about liberty, limited government, freedom, Constitutional principles, and the like. Those are all relevant to the purposes of the conservative grassroots movement.  But are they ends?  Or are they just means?

I believe they are means.  In the founders’ writings we find clues to the end, even they don’t state it explicitly.  Jefferson did.  Jay came close.  And Adams implicitly understood that end. 


Let me ask this: what’s the point of all the work we did in the past two years?  I mean, some of us lost friends, homes, financial security, jobs, and family relationships over this tea party thing.  Some of us switched careers. 

Why?  Why go through this?

If the end is good government, then by what yardstick do we measure “good government?” And what sane person would put himself out for a better government in Washington?

In the end, we are doing this for ourselves as individuals and for our family and community.  We are doing this to improve our own lives, and with ours, everyone’s.  But, again, to what end?  How do we measure better lives?

The answer is in the Declaration and in dozens (if not hundreds) of writings from around the time of the American Revolution.  It involves a state of mind and a state of being, not a station or a title.

Find for that end, pursue that end, and demand that government permit you to pursue that end.  You’ll end up fighting for precisely what the Tea Party came about to promote. But you’ll recognize those things as means, not ends. 

Finally, let me put it this way: if all of our stated objectives are met and we’re still miserable, we will have failed. 

Please leave your thoughts in the comments section.

The Story of the Tenth Amendment

**Note: Please read the entire store by clicking on the title or the Continue Reading link below. ** Those of us whose conservative conversions occured in the late 1970s and early 1980s, I think, are particularly fascinated by the 10th Amendment to the Constitution. We also mourn over its senseless destruction by Congress, courts, and citizens.

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved for the States respectively, or to the people.

How simple. How refreshing. How freedom-loving. For those whose civics classes centered around Native-American rights and women's sufferage lectures, the straightforward concept of this amendment may be too simple to grasp. Try this:

The Constitution speaking to the new members of the 110th Congress, introducing herself:

"I am the Constitution of the United States of America. I was born September 17, 1787 and baptized by the several states in 1789. My husbands have all died, leaving me to fend for myself. I see you have their portraits and statues adourning your walls and this great city. Thank you. I miss them, too.

"I'd like you to meet my 10th son, born in a litter of 10, in 1791. Being the runt of the litter, he is, of course, my favorite. (Please don't tell the others, though; I love them, too. Even the 14th, who is so shamefully misunderstood by everyone.)"

"The Tenth, as we call him, speaks directly to you and to that court a few blocks from here. But do they listen? Do you hear what he tells you?

"When I see the way you ignore him, I think of Scrooge with the Ghost of Christmas Future. Remember the little boy and little girl huddled under the robe of the grim reaper? Remember what Scrooge's guide told him about them?

'This boy is Ignorance. This girl is Want. Beware them both, and all of their degree, but most of all beware this boy, for on his brow I see that written which is Doom, unless the writing be erased.'

"My Tenth, poor little fellow, warns you the same. You ignore the boy at your own peril. You ignore the writing on his brow--a concept so simple, so easy for you to disregard in your sophistication and achievement and fame. But listen, please, while you still can.

"My Tenth is telling you what his Fathers believed, what you claim in you campaign speeches to believe. He's talking about me, his mother. He's telling you, 'Listen to my mother!'

"He speaks so softly that you'll need to turn off your iPods and stop the side conversations to hear him. But what he says is, perhaps, more profound than anything ever written. He says, 'If my mother, the Constitution, doesn't tell you, Congress, to do something, it's the same as her telling that you must not do it. Unlike God, Mother doesn't have time to list the things you're not permitted to do--and there are so many. After all, you aren't a creature of God, but of Man. Man is free to do all but a short list of things, but you are permitted to do only that stated in the Constitution, and no more. You are constrained--the people are merely guided.'"

The Congress sat in nervous silence. A few throats cleared. Some people, mostly on the left side of the aisle, looked down at the blue carpet and seemed restless, even angry. They seemed wishing to be adjourned. Others, mostly on the right, seemed to want to hear more, as if they recognized a favorite lullaby their mothers used to sing them. A tiny group, too small to count, really, all on the Right, wept quietly. They loved the Tenth and saw its mother's pain and wondered what its Fathers would say about this and previous Congresses. They knew the Fathers' thoughts would not be kind.

Ed Morrissey's piece on Captain's Quarters inpsired this story. I hope, like Ed, that our candidates understand the simple little sentence at the end of the Bill of Rights. I wonder, sometimes, weather anyone does. Mark Trapscott's piece on the 10th Amendment through Fred Thompson's eyes seems to have inspired Ed. Please read them all. More from Instapundit.