Posts Tagged ‘American’

If someone were to talk about people who live in conditions of poverty, you might expect them to be talking about people who live in developing countries or in a location where a natural disaster has recently occurred. Would you be surprised to learn that over 14 million American children live below the poverty level today? Most people in this country would be shocked to hear that number. Do we simply look at the forest of reasonably well-off people in America and forget to look at the individual trees?

Especially during the past few years of economic downturn, the problem of children in poverty is becoming a topic of which more and more people are becoming aware. There are many reasons for poverty, but with many jobs being lost and homes being foreclosed on recently, more and more people are unable to meet the high cost of living. The children are the innocent victims of circumstances beyond the control of their families. If there is not enough money, the children are undernourished, have limited educational opportunities, and minimal health care. This means that they are growing up without the advantages that most Americans take for granted.

Once you are aware of the magnitude of this problem, you will probably ask yourself what you can do to help. It may seem overwhelming and like nothing you can do could possibly make a dent. However, the little you are able to do could help one child receive needed medical care or nutritional supplies. It will make a difference to that one child. If you tell someone else about the problem and let them know that you are helping and ask them to help as well, it will make the difference to another child. One by one, the children can be helped out of this terrible situation.

Once you have decided that you can make a difference, you may wish to know how to go about finding ways to help. Many Church and Civic groups work with children who are living below the poverty level. They love to have volunteers and donations and can get you started on a path to empowering the children. There are also many other charitable organizations who have studied this problem and know how to put the least amount of money to the best use, so you know that every dollar counts. You can search online for charitable organizations dedicated to feeding America’s hungry children and make donations through them. No matter how you are able to help, don’t let another day go by without doing something for a hungry child.

The American Relief Foundation invites you to help us provide poor children around the US with support they need. We are looking for a Suffolk County Car Donation to help our cause. If you have an unwanted car consider a charity car donations.

What if the South Won the American Civil War?

The American Civil War was the most devastating event in United States history. It changed the entire fate of the nation, and created the America we know today.

But, what if that all changed? What if instead of a Southern defeat, the Confederates won the Civil War? Using alternate history, that is a question I am to theorize about.

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Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/alternatehistoryhub

Music by Holfix: Check out his channel! https://www.youtube.com/user/holfix
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The Classical Conservative Definition:
A classical conservative values tradition and freedom over governmental power. Conservatives, under this definition, advocate a free market economy without governmental intervention. Conservatives tend to view government as a necessary evil, whose primary responsibility is to protect people from violation of their rights and freedom by others. Conservatives distinguish this from government taking action to guarantee people’s rights and freedom (a subtle, but important distinction). Conservatives think of morality as something that binds people into groups through loyalty and authority (in certain cases, substituting religion for authority). Conservatives tend to be tribalists.

There is likely not as much difference between the two philosophies as you may have thought. The distinctions are subtle, but they do lead to a different philosophy of both the purpose, and responsibilities of government. Distinctions between the two philosophies shift and morph to suit the politics of the day.

Conservatives are usually regarded as associated with the Republican Party, liberals with the Democratic Party. This is an over-generalization.

Both parties embrace certain conservative and liberal tendencies. Moreover, it does not account for those that do not affiliate with either party, standing as independents, a very large segment of America’s political society.

FOUNDERS OF CONSERVATISM
Edmund Burke is often regarded as the founder of the conservative philosophy. Burke stated in 1791 that it was not necessary to tear apart society to cure its evils:

“An ignorant man who is not fool enough to meddle with his clock, is however sufficiently confident to think he can safely take to pieces, and put together at his pleasure, a moral machine of another guise, importance and complexity, composed of far other wheels, and springs, and balances, and counteracting and co-operating powers.

Men little think how immorally they act in rashly meddling with what they do not understand. Their delusive good intention is no sort of excuse for their presumption. They who truly mean well must be fearful of acting ill.”

Burke professed that change should only be made when fully aware of the consequences of the actions. Society is complex and interconnected, so changes must be made with deliberation and knowledge of history. The damage from miscalculated changes can be too disastrous to society, to do otherwise.

This is not to say conservatives oppose change. Conservatives recognize that change is necessary in society; however, conservatives move at a slower pace than liberals.

The Modern Conservative Movement
Many credit Russell Kirk’s 1953 book, “The Conservative Mind” with the birth of the modern conservative movement in the United States. In 1957, Kirk condensed he beliefs in “The Essence of Conservatism:”

“…The conservative is a person who endeavors to conserve the best in our traditions and our institutions, reconciling that best with necessary reform from time to time…Our American War of Independence…especially in the works of John Adams, Alexander Hamilton, and James Madison, we find a sober and tested conservatism founded upon an understanding of history and human nature. The Constitution which the leaders of that generation drew up has proved to be the most successful conservative device in all history.”

In this statement, Kirk restated that the U.S. Constitution is an instrument that protects people from abuse by government; in that regard, the Constitution must be strictly interpreted to guarantee that protection.

Barry Goldwater was the first politician to waive the modern conservative banner. His book, “The Conscience of a Conservative” was required reading at Harvard, at least for a while. When running for president in 1964, Goldwater promised to enforce the U.S. Constitution.

However, it was Ronald Reagan that legitimized the conservative political philosophy as President in 1980. He ran on a platform of cutting government, as he did when governor in California, where his main reform was in welfare.

As President, Reagan cut taxes in his first year. Whether as a direct result or not, the U.S. economy began an unprecedented economic boom in 1982 that lasted until 2001. However, Reagan will also be remembered for not only his economic forecast in 1982, but his prophesy that: “The march of freedom and democracy … will leave Marxism-Leninism on the ash-heap of history as it has left other tyrannies which stifle the freedom and muzzle the self-expression of the people.”

The fall of the Berlin wall came in 1989, followed by the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991.

CONCLUSION
In looking at the above comparison of conservative and liberal values, it is apparent that arguments can be made for the value of either position. However, such a limited view misses the point. Combining both philosophies can take the best from each to provide solutions to our problems.

As an example, take the issue of trust as to whether government is the best answer to our problems. Conservatives are wary to trust government as the answer; liberals tend to see government as a necessary evil, but still the best answer to solve our problems. Both are appropriate views. Our Founding Fathers recognized this dilemma and developed a system of checks and balances, a separation of powers for an effective government, but one that never developed too much power over its citizens.

The Founding Fathers listened to both sides of the conservative and liberal argument to try to find a system that meets the needs of all.

Today, our society needs to move forward to meet new challenges; liberals say we need new solutions to those challenges; conservatives say we need to trust proven solutions because miscalculation could make our problems worse. Again, both views have value; and a blending of both is likely the best answer: learn from the past, while we forge the future.

Unfortunately, our politics have become too polarized and too divisive. People take positions rather than work together. Political parties provide those positions. Many Republicans revert to religion as a bastion, while many Democrats turn their party into a religion.

After obtaining a degree in political science, I embarked on a career in insurance and government. For the last 21 years, I have worked for local government and government associations. I have written articles, as well as manuals, assisting local government in effectively managing their activities and exposures. I have also provided training in these areas, been a frequent speaker at educational seminars, and acted as President of an association of governmental employees.

Scientific American Frontiers: The Hidden Prejudice

Scientific American Frontiers Host, Alan Alda, speaks with Dr. Mahzarin R. Banaji (Harvard University) and Dr. Brian Nosek (University of Virginia) on how the subconscious mind can influence decision making. They discuss several experiments that use the “Implicit Association Test” (IAT) to reveal hidden gender and racial biases.

Additional Research Information
Updated (05/15/2009):

Scientific American: The Implicit Prejudice
http://www.sciam.com/article.cfm?id=the-implicit-prejudice&print=true

Project Implicit®
http://www.projectimplicit.net/

Copies of Technical Research Papers can be obtained at:
http://projectimplicit.net/articles.php

The Test
https://implicit.harvard.edu/implicit/

Harvard Science: Prejudices we won’t admit
http://tinyurl.com/qubejc

WashingtonPost.com: See No Bias
http://www.washingtonpost.com/ac2/wp-dyn/A27067-2005Jan21?language=printer

University of Washington: The Unconscious Roots of Racism
http://uwnews.org/article.asp?articleid=2568

University of Washington: Prejudice affects 90 to 95 percent of people
http://uwnews.washington.edu/article.asp?articleID=2607

University of Michigan Health System: Your Child & Television
http://www.med.umich.edu/yourchild/topics/TV.htm#attitude

The Media Awareness Network: Kids & Racial Stereotypes
http://www.media-awareness.ca/english/resources/tip_sheets/racial_tip.cfm

Gladwell.com: The Second Mind (Blink)
http://www.gladwell.com/blink/blink_excerpt1.html
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