we’re not created equal

Where does the notion come from that any two people should have equal results.

Like with the idea that we can possibly understand the dynamics of the earth’s climate, what makes us think that two people’s lives can follow an equal path.

No two people have had the same experiences, education, opportunities or luck. Some people are wealthy because they made the right decisions at the right time. Some “worked harder.”

Some worked really hard and ended up with an average income. Some worked two jobs and ended up relatively poor.

But society seems to have this strange urge to make everyone the same. To equalize the outcome.

To what end? There are wealthy people who are miserable, and poor people who are having the time of their life.

I think money gets way too much credit for the affect it has on people. Some people think about it all of the time, and others never sweat it.

Conservatism is about limited government. But, in a sense, it’s also about leaving others alone and being left alone yourself.

I don’t want people watching me to make sure I’ve got as much as the next guy, and I also don’t want them checking to see that I don’t have too much.

The world will never be equal from person to person. That’s what makes it great. Everyone has their own story and set of experiences. Let’s not assume they’re happy or miserable based on how much money they are perceived to have.

Some rich people have no savings, and some poorer people have saved a surprising amount. Either way, you’ll never know. But we should clear the decks as much as is possible to let people pursue happiness as much as they want and to the best of their ability.


what motivates an “achiever?”

I think there is a growing perception that achievers are solely motivated by money. Those on the liberal side beat this drum constantly, and add the part about “… and at the expense of others.”

But conservatives, more specifically Republicans, tend to cement this notion as well by always talking about one’s ability to make money, get rich on their own hard work or even just keep more of what they earn. This implies that it’s the money they are most concerned about.

I think that’s a shame, because most of the people I’ve known and had the honor to work with, be they liberal or conservative, tend to take joy in their achievements.

Accomplishing something, especially having to overcome obstacles to do it, is a great feeling, and I’ve enjoyed watching people of all political beliefs go through it. It’s rewarding to be a part of and to watch.

Money is something that usually accompanies achievement in some way or another. But I don’t think it’s the driver. It’s a driver to just “have a job,” and it’s a driver for some who are strictly motivated by it.

But I believe the majority of Americans, and certainly conservatives (though not limited to them, by any means) are motivated by doing and doing well. Now we just need to create a climate in which that can happen.

conservatism hits the road

I was driving to work today when I ended up behind a guy doing 30 mph in a 40 mph zone.

The first chance I got, I attempted to pass him. He sped up his car so that I couldn’t (or most couldn’t… I don’t give up easily).

To me, this was a great example of conservatism applied. One of the roots of conservatism is minding your own business and letting people live their own lives.

If someone wants to pass me, I let them. If they want to go 80 in a 40, why not? Survival of the fittest. If I let them pass me, then they’re no longer tailgating me or giving me the finger or whatever. I let them pass, and they’re out of my life. They get to go fast, I get to go my own speed.

To purposefully try to keep someone behind you is to actively assert control over another. And all it does is make sure both parties are pissed off – which opens the door to a more dangerous ending.

The man who tried to prevent me from passing was a liberal. The Obama sticker told me so (at least they’re clearly labeled… almost all of them in Madison). A conservative would have let me go, and might even have pulled to the shoulder to ensure a safer pass.

the youtube mix

A friend of mine just sent this over to me. His message?

“Consider my mind blown. I am done. This is BY FAR the best thing I have ever found on the internet.”

Strong words, to be sure. But I can see his point.

Sorry, but there’s no visual to share. You just have to go HERE to experience it yourself.


For more information on Kutiman, check out this album review on Pitchfork. I know I’ll be buying a copy.

abortion confusion

I can’t help but wonder, with their penchant for limited government, how abortion rights are not a cause for conservatives while they are for liberals, who are usually pro-government control.

This seems entirely backwards to me. I’m aware of the religious component to it, but religion is not necessarily tied to conservatism (in fact, its only tie is the notion that our freedom is granted from god (which god, not specified)).

do you hear me?

I’ve heard it observed many times that our texting culture no longer knows how to write.

And, as a hiring manager, I’ve seen way too many examples of this in resumes, cover letters and work that’s been handed to me. It is stunning, and problematic, that the next generation appears to be unable to write their thoughts with any coherence.

But only recently, I’ve come to realize that this is partly due to the fact that people no longer know how to listen, either.

The ability to listen is absolutely crucial to the future of this country. You can’t learn without listening. You can’t think critically unless you are hearing and understanding the words of others.

And hearing the words of others isn’t necessarily enough. You have to consider the context and the origin of the words.

I watched Rush Limbaugh’s now famous CPAC speech last Saturday. What impressed me most about it is that he generally left behind his mock arrogance and insistence on assigning evil motivations to liberals.

Instead, he gave, what I considered to be, a heartfelt definition of conservatism and why it promotes greatness in all people. He explained it, to the nation, in a way that it has never been explained before.

And to hear the media report what he said is stunning to me. None of what I hear reported actually came from that speech. As is usually the case with Limbaugh, you need to listen to the sum of his words. He is very hard to excerpt, which I think hurts him greatly.

But listening also requires courage. It requires the courage to suspend, just for a moment, your own beliefs, get your head in the mindset of those who believe in him, and consider what he’s actually saying. Explore his ideas and thoughts and test them out. Play with them a bit.

In the end, you may conclude he’s wrong… and that’s fine. But I am not at all convinced our nation has the ability to listen and consider anymore.

I would say the exact same thing for people listening to Obama. I don’t think anyone is truly listening to the entirety of his words and considering what they truly mean.

I fear this is going to cost us all.

atlas shrugged – it never really goes away, does it?

I just read in the Economist that sales of Ayn Rand’s classic, Atlas Shrugged, are spiking again – and have been since Obama’s inauguration.

Like many, I read Atlas Shrugged in college, and, like many, it completely changed my life. It’s one of those rare books that comes along and forever changes the lens through which you see the world.

The premise of the book, in brief (especially compared to the 1,000+ pages of the book), is what would happen if all of the talented, motivated achievers of the world just decided they were done being taken for granted, scorned and unappreciated and decided to all disappear. I don’t think it’s too much of a spoiler to tell that by disappear, I mean they all find a place where they can live together, free from the dependents who continually took from them with no give-back or appreciation.

No book has remained a part of me as much as this one, and I can’t recommend it strongly enough. We’re living the first half of the book right now. What I wonder is if the achievers decided to check out, where would they go? (I’m thinking California will be ripe for the taking, soon… just a thought).

Even if you don’t think you can make it through the entire book, read the first 100 pages. The opening scene on the train will strike a chord with you immediately.