Curtis Dahlgren
A LETTER TO "INDEPENDENTS" from (re Palin, etc.)
By Curtis Dahlgren
July 14, 2009

"Charles de Gaulle not only memorized the answers he gave at press conferences, but required questioners to memorize the questions he gave them to ask him." William F. Buckley, Jr.

"When schoolchildren start paying union dues, that's when I'll start representing the interests of schoolchildren." — Al Shanker, longtime president of the American Federation of Teachers

IF EVEN HELEN THOMAS CAN SEE WHAT'S GOING ON, SURELY "REAGAN DEMOCRATS" CAN TOO. If one can savage a Palin, impale a Savage, and haze a Rush, one can silence millions of people, control the media, and abort the American Experiment in Liberty.

"Conservatives and other Independents" need to get together and speak up before it's too late. The educrats-from-hell certainly aren't hiding their agendas anymore! We need to stop hiding our "feelings" and stop preaching just to the choir. The retiring counsel for the National Education recently said that the NEA "has fashioned itself into "the nation's leading advocates' for public education and the type of liberal social and economic agenda" [that right-wing groups find unacceptable]. NO KIDDING!

The Roman statesman Seneca (4 BC-65 AD) once said, "It is better, of course, to know useless things than to know nothing."

But Seneca would be shocked by the public schools today! Many of the curricula are worse than nothing at all would be! The Wisconsin Education Association Council constantly tells us what "great schools" they have, but one local school board recently adopted "Eight Don'ts of Education," according to a memo sent to parents. Included among these "8 don'ts" were:

- Don't grade on behavior.

- Don't give demerits for late work.

- Don't give credit for extra work.

- Don't average in any "zero" work.

- Don't, well — you get the idea (in other words, teachers' expectations should not "stress" the students with the lowest-common-denominator work-ehtics). But keep asking the tax payers for more money for the teachers, because the school-children don't pay any "union dues."

President James Monroe warned us, "While then [America] retains its sound and healthful state, everything will be safe. [People] will choose competent and faithful representatives for every department. It is only when the people become ignorant and corrupt, when they degenerate into a populace, that they are incapable of exercising the sovereignty.

"Usurpation is then an easy attainment, and an usurper soon found. The people themselves become the willing instruments of their own debasement and ruin." [1st Inaugural Address]

A couple of years ago, I asked a college freshman if she knew who James Monroe was, and she said, "Marilyn Monroe's husband?" I've know three "grads" of the high school I attended what the 4th of July commemorates, and they all had "no clue." When given a clue, "England," all three said the same thing: "BEATLES?"

Y'think we're almost at the point of no return yet? It's almost "too easy" for an usurper to achieve his leftist "social and economic agenda" when the young voters don't even know what the word "usurper" means (I even had to explain what the word "commemorates" means to those kids who didn't know the meaning of the fourth of July!

The time to speak up is when it doesn't seem to do any good, but you can still DO it. A mother complained to the New York Times in 1998 about the lack of history in her 4th-grader's public school. An "educator" (sic) immediately wrote a "defense" by saying:

"There is a common misconception that a history course is a study of the past . . "

A Columbia University professor replied to that letter by saying, "Well, it's nice to have that cleared up, isn't it?" Yes, they call it Social Studies now [or Present-Tense History]. Social engineering is so much more "fun" than reading, writing, and arithmetic!!

The motto of the National Association for the Social Studies is:

"Transforming cultures — past, present, and future."

Our Ivy League wannabe educators took a tip from George Orwell when he said, "He who controls the past controls the future; who controls the present controls the past."

Instead of taking those words as a warning never to let anyone "control" (and silence) the past, the Lefties took it as a recipe for victory.

Speaking of "culture," the wall-to-wall coverage of the Michael J. "Princess Diana" Ross "memorial" last week was a mixed blessing. It may have been an eye-opener for some people, and it certainly gave the Palin family a little relief from the magnifying glass.

Ironically, in 2008, Maureen Dowd's column published on the fifth anniversary of the 9-11 attack complained about the supposed Palin "personality cult." Mo said that since the GOP now had "the electric Palin, they've stopped arguing that celebrity is bad. All they do is worship at her cult of celebrity."

Strong words there (with a touch of jealousy perhaps). Dowd compared Sarah Palin to Eliza Doolittle "the flower seller" being groomed for the Ball. Methinketh Mo protesteth too much, and has forgotten perhaps how the story of the Fair Lady turns out. The gritty Eliza stole the professor's heart and was the belle of the Ball.

Maureen Dowd said, "Palin has to be a Kmart mom who appeals to Kmart moms and dads."

Filling in for Rush Limbaugh last week, Mark Belling [WISN] said it the best. He said that the Left keeps attacking Sarah, because — as they would like to put it — "You're not good enough to be one of US!" After all, she comes from the [yuk] West, and didn't go to an Ivy League school.

Please, Dave Letterman, no jokes about "I-DA-HO State." Which reminds me, I recently said in this column that Geraldine Ferraro ran for veep in 1988 ("how soon we forget," I said). Well, maybe I made that typo on purpose, so I could transition back to the Palin flaps again.

President Reagan always treated his opponents with respect (sometimes with respectful humor, but funnier than Letterman or Franken). Can you imagine Reagan in 1984 ever comparing Geraldine Ferraro to a flower seller or a "slutty flight attendant"?

If Geraldine Ferraro had recently given birth to a Down syndrome baby, would Reagan have made jokes that maybe it wasn't really hers, or that her 14-year-old daughter might get PG at a baseball game in Yankee Stadium? If Geraldine had had a pregnant 18-year-old daughter, the news media might have "celebrated the choice" [the choice to have sex, that is].

If Ferraro's church had been fire-bombed, the media might have acted as though it were a Big Deal. But Sarah is one of "those people" — and I know how the game is played. One typo or one question designed to entrap, and Sarah ends up not only the butt of bad jokes but in debt for exorbitant legal defense fees.

I just ran across a page I had torn out of the National Review in 1988 after the so-called debate between the VP candidates. Bill Buckley said that it was "vicious" of Lloyd Bentsen to say to Dan Quayle, "Senator, you're no Jack Kennedy."

"Quayle's gentle reprimand — 'That was uncalled for' — had a quick, sobering effect on an audience clearly partisan to Bentsen. The Democratic [VP] candidate will suffer for this act of historical one-upmanship.' [And he did.]

Viciousness has a way of backfiring. The relentless attacks by entertainment and news media on Governor Palin — and her family — make it very understandable why she resigned. I would have too. But now Sarah is "free at last." After running for governor in California and losing, Richard Nixon toured the country speaking for six years. It may or may not take six years for Gov. Palin to bounce back, but at least she can, if she will, be a VOICE out there for us traditionalists, "Independents," Christians, Reaganites, and sundry anti-socialists who dare to object to "two trillion dollar deficits."

Not that our problems can be solved by one person. We never said that they can be, and that was one of our biggest objections to the rhetoric of the Obama campaign.

P.S. As Burke said, all that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for enough good people to do "nothing." General MacArthur said that the "solution" must be of the Spirit. He was an "egotist" in some person's books, but does that sound like an egotist? Our public school graduates don't even get it, but MacArthur was saying that essentially only God can save us now. "We have had our last chance," he said.

Burke was indicating that you still matter as an individual, though. This column wasn't about Sarah Palin or anyone else. It's about YOU. An unknown poet wrote "What have we done today?"

We shall do so much in the years to come, but what have we done today?
We shall give our gold in a princely sum, but what did we give today?
We shall be so kind in the afterwhile, but what have we been today? . . .
We shall reap such joys in the by and by, but what have we sown today?
We shall build us mansions in the sky, but what have we built today?

'Tis sweet in idle dreams to bask, but here and now, do we do our task?
Yes, this is the thing our souls must ask,
"What have we done TODAY?"

© Curtis Dahlgren


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Curtis Dahlgren

Curtis Dahlgren is semi-retired in southern Wisconsin, and is the author of "Massey-Harris 101." His career has had some rough similarities to one of his favorite writers, Ferrar Fenton... (more)


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