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Take One

Have Your Voice Be Heard

George Washington...... 1 False Security............ 1 Minimum Wage............ 1 (see back)

Feature:

Vol. 28, No. 2

Ithaca / Tompkins County

INCOME GAP SOARS UNDER OBAMA

February 2014

Income Inequality Grows Under Obama.............. 6

Know The Enemy: Al Qaeda’s Strategy Thomas Joscelyn Reprinted from the Weekly Standard

Source: US Census Bureau

George Washington: A Model of Character Daniel Webster A speech given in Washington, D.C. On February 22, 1832, the centennial birthday of George Washington, a number of men, members of Congress and others, from different parts of the Union, celebrated the occasion by a public dinner in the city of Washington. After dinner,
 Senator Daniel Webster of Massachusetts (1782–1852) gave this (excerpted) address, which remains one of the greatest speeches commemorating our founding president. I rise, Gentlemen, to propose to you the name of that great man, in commemoration of whose birth, and in honor of whose character and services, we are here assembled. I am sure that I express a sentiment common to every one present, when I say that there is something more than ordinarily solemn and affecting in this occasion. We are met to testify our regard for him whose name is intimately blended with whatever belongs most essentially to the prosperity, the liberty, the free institutions, and the renown of our country. That name was of power to rally a nation, in the hour of thick-thronging public disasters and calamities; that name shone, amid the storm of war, a beacon light, to cheer and guide the country’s friends; it flamed, too, like a meteor, to repel her foes. That name, in the days of peace, was a loadstone, attracting to itself a whole people’s confidence, a whole people’s love, and the whole world’s respect.

That name, descending with all time, spreading over the whole earth, and uttered in all the languages belonging to the tribes and races of men, will for ever be pronounced with affectionate gratitude by every one in whose breast there shall arise an aspiration for human rights and human liberty. We perform this grateful duty, Gentlemen, at the expiration of a hundred years from his birth, near the place, so cherished and beloved by him, where his dust now reposes, and in the capital which bears his own immortal name. All experience evinces that human sentiments are strongly influenced by associations. The recurrence of anniversaries, or of longer periods of time, naturally freshens the recollection, and deepens the impression, of events with which they are historically connected. Renowned places, also, have a power to awaken feeling, which all acknowledge. No American can pass by the fields of Bunker Hill, Monmouth, and Camden, as if they were ordinary spots on the earth’s surface. Whoever visits them feels the sentiment of love of country kindling anew, as if the spirit that belonged to the transactions which have rendered these places distinguished still hovered round, with power to move and excite all who in future time may approach them. But neither of these sources of emotion continued on page 8

In the summer of 2008, Barack Obama, senator and presidential candidate, toured the war zones of Afghanistan and Iraq. Obama had endeared himself to the antiwar left by denouncing President Bush’s decision to topple Saddam Hussein and repeatedly claiming that the war in Iraq had diverted resources from defeating al Qaeda and its allies in South Asia. Obama did not tone down this criticism even as he spoke with CBS News from Kabul on July 20, shortly before proceeding to Saddam’s former abode. “We got distracted by Iraq,” Obama said. Afghanistan “has to be the central focus, the central front [in] our battle against terrorism.” Some top U.S. military commanders, including General David Petraeus, then the face of the American war effort, disagreed with Obama’s assessment. And in Iraq, the general and the senator squared off. The contentious meeting between Petraeus and Obama has been recorded in The Endgame: The Inside Story of the Struggle for Iraq,

from George W. Bush to Barack Obama, by New York Times reporter Michael Gordon and General Bernard E. Trainor. Obama repeated that “Afghanistan is the central front in the war on terror,” and therefore a timetable for withdrawing troops from Iraq was necessary. Petraeus disagreed: “Actually, Senator, Iraq is what al Qaeda says is the central front.” Obama was unpersuaded. “The al Qaeda leadership is not here in Iraq. They are there,” Obama said, pointing to Pakistan on a map. Petraeus, of course, knew this. The general did not need the senator to point out the obvious. And besides, Petraeus argued, Obama was missing the point. Whatever one thought of the decision to invade Saddam’s neo-Stalinist state in the first place, al Qaeda had made the fight for Iraq its main priority. Obama pressed forward, questioning “whether al Qaeda in Iraq [AQI] presented a threat to the United States,” Gordon and continued on page 4

A False Narrative Endangers Security Joseph Lieberman Testimony given at the House Homeland Security Committee In the aftermath of the attacks of September 11, 2001, the overwhelming focus of our government and of the American people was on the threat of terrorism. Twelve years later, that is no longer the case. Our loss of focus is in part a consequence of the success we have achieved—namely, the fact that we have not had another catastrophic attack on our homeland since that terrible Tuesday morning in September, 2001. The absence of such an attack, however, is not because of an absence of terrorist plots or plans against us. Rather, it has been the consequence of vigilance, determination, courage, and creativity by national security professionals and national leaders across two Administrations, as well as the close cooperation and help of America’s allies and partners around the world. It is also due to a series of sweeping national security reforms and innovations enacted in the aftermath of 9/11 that have made our nation safer. Pride in this achievement, however, must be tempered by an awareness of several harsh realities. First, al Qaeda and its affiliates remain a ruthless, determined, and adaptive adversary. Second, the underlying ideology

that inspires and drives al Qaeda to attack us and our allies—the ideology of violent Islamist extremism--is neither defeated nor exhausted. It manifests itself not just in al Qaeda but in terrorist organizations that are either unaffiliated with al Qaeda or loosely affiliated with it. For that reason, our safety as a nation is ultimately inseparable from our own ability to adapt to meet this changing threat. It also requires that we stay engaged in the world beyond our borders. That is the best way to prevent another terrorist attack against America like the one that occurred on 9/11. Yet increasingly we hear voices--on both sides of the political spectrum--who say that the threat from terrorism is receding, the end of this conflict is here or near, and therefore that we can withdraw from much of the rest of the world. This narrative is badly and dangerously mistaken. There is no question, the United States—under President Bush and President Obama—has inflicted severe damage to ‘core’ al Qaeda, the senior leadership that continued on page 3


IN REAL LIFE

Minimum Wage Order is Out of Step with America Diana Furchgott-Roth Reprinted from the Manhattan Institute President Obama’s executive order raising the minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10 an hour covers employees of federal government contractors who work on federal projects, and applies to new contracts. It would give some workers as much as a 39 percent raise. But others would lose jobs, since Congress is unlikely to increase contractors’ funding because Obama has raised the minimum wage by executive order, skirting congressional authority. In a fact sheet, the White House stated, “Low wages are also bad for business, as paying low wages lowers employee morale, encourages low productivity, and leads to frequent employee turnover--all of which impose costs.” Although he has little private-sector experience, the president thinks he knows best how to run a business. Some unintended consequences: Under the new order, food service contractors operating federal cafeterias might lay off workers to keep costs even. Or, if firms kept all workers, they might cut costs in other ways, or raise prices of food. The order is more show than substance. If Obama cared about the issue, he could have ordered all employees of federal contractors—not just those working on federal contracts—to be paid $10.10 an hour immediately, indexed for inflation. President Lyndon Johnson’s 1965 Executive Order 11246, which banned government contractors from discrimination on the basis of race, sex, and national origin, covered all employees of federal contractors. Large government contractors, such as Lockheed Martin and Boeing, primarily employ professionals such as mechanics, engineers, scientists and professional service personnel who are already paid more than $10.10. The non-profit organization, Demos has estimated that federal contractors employ 560,000 people making less than $12.00 an hour on government contracts. If 250,000 employees of government contractors made less than $10.10 an hour—say, an average of $8.10—and each worked 2,000 hours per year, then when the minimum wage increase were fully phased in, each employee would cost the federal contractor another $4,000 annually. The cost to the federal contractors to raise wages for those 250,000 workers would be $1 billion a year. While legal, the minimum wage executive order is contrary to congressional intent and contrary to the practices of American people. The president is out of step with Congress, and out of step with the country. Most people do not hesitate to go to fast-food establishments because these restaurants pay minimum wage. On the contrary, fast-food restaurants appear to be flooded with customers. The House of Representatives has shown wisdom in keeping the minimum wage at $7.25 and allowing states to set higher minimum levels if they choose. Fewer than 3 percent of American workers make minimum wage, but half of them are younger than 25. Teens faced a 20 percent unemployment rate

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Volume 28, No.2

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February 5, 2014

in December. The unemployment rate for African American teens was higher, at 36 percent. These are the people who would be adversely affected by a higher minimum wage. Census data assembled by Heritage Foundation economist James Sherk show that the average annual income of a family with a minimum wage worker is $53,000. Minimum wage workers tend not to be heads of households. Obama’s order will discourage federal contractors from hiring young, low-skilled workers. Precisely to avoid giving employers disincentives to hire such individuals, our society has crafted a social safety net to supplement low earnings,

including the earned income tax credit, energy assistance, food stamps, Medicaid, and housing vouchers. To raise earnings, we should encourage children to finish high school. Along with unemployed adults, they should get post-secondary education in high-return fields, such as health services or computer programming. Then employers would be competing to hire them at wages far above Obama’s proposed minimum. n

Reprinted from the Manhattan Institutes economics21 organization: http:// www.economics21.org/commentary/obamas-minimum-wage-order-outstep-americahttp://economics21.org/commentary/obamas-minimum-wageorder-out-step-america

Better Marriages Without Mandates Joseph Horton Reprinted from Vision and Values Everyone is happy when they are engaged, even those who will eventually divorce. The feelings people have going into marriage do not predict the future of the relationship. Therefore I recommend that everyone get good premarital education. I tell my Foundations of Psychological Science students this every semester. I convey to them it is the most important thing I will tell them all semester. A group in Colorado is working to get an initiative onto the November ballot to require couples to get premarital education. It is further hoped that such initiatives will get passed in other states. I hope the proposals fail to pass. Good, evidence-based, premarital education works. By evidence-based, I mean programs that are founded on scientific evidence and have been scientifically tested. Two such examples are P.R.E.P. and Prepare/Enrich. Not all premarital education programs are evidence based. On average, couples who participate in evidence-based programs are happier and more satisfied during the first few years of marriage, when divorce risk is at its highest, than couples who do not complete such programs. As a society we will benefit if more people seek good premarital education. That children do best when raised by two happily married parents is one of the most robust findings in social-science research. Just as it is recommended that people get annual physicals, marital health would be better if people checked the health of their marriage before problems arise. Ideal times for additional education are before the birth of the first child and when the children leave home. These life transitions present new challenges for which new skills can be learned. Most Americans, even those who are not particularly religious, want to get married in churches. The Marriage Savers organization encourages churches in communities to unite by requiring good premarital education of everyone who gets

married in a church. These community-wide marriage policies have been shown to dramatically reduce divorce rates. Note that these policies are adopted by churches freely without coercion. Note too that couples who object to premarital education are free to have a non-church wedding or to have their wedding in a community where the churches do not require premarital education. The research evidence is quite convincing. Good premarital education programs improve people’s lives. Yet I am strongly opposed to the ballot initiative on two grounds. First, I am concerned about liberty. When government forces us to do things that experts say are good for us there will be no end to government intrusion in our lives. Think of all the things that are supposed to be good for us: reading, eating vegetables, saving for retirement, meditating, and the list goes on.  How much documentation about how many activities do we need to provide to government officials so they know we are doing things for our own good? Second, when the government begins requiring premarital education, it can begin regulating the content of the education. If you, like me, would like to see far more people get good premarital education, be careful what you wish for! Today we are free to base our programs on what science shows to be effective. We do not need government officials to determine what our programs should and should not include. Marriage is a great institution. It is not only the best situation for raising kids; on average married people are happier, healthier, and wealthier than those who are not. Premarital education programs improve people’s odds of obtaining the bountiful blessings of a good marriage. The product is great. We may need better marketing, but we do not need the government to coerce people to buy our product. n © 2013 by The Center for Vision & Values at Grove City College. http:// www.visionandvalues.org/2014/01/better-marriage-through-marketing-notcoercion/

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SECURITY Continued from page 1

reconstituted itself in the mid-2000s in the tribal areas of northwestern Pakistan, after being driven by the American military from neighboring Afghanistan after 9/11. To borrow a phrase from General David Petraeus, while the progress we have achieved against core al Qaeda is real and significant it is also fragile and reversible. What has degraded core al Qaeda in the tribal areas of Pakistan has been the persistent, targeted application of military force against these individuals and networks. The precondition for these operations, and the intelligence that enables them, has been our presence in Afghanistan. If the United States withdraws all of our military forces from Afghanistan at the end of this year—the so-called “zero option,” which some now advocate—you can be sure that al Qaeda will regenerate, eventually on both sides of the Afghan-Pakistan border. If you doubt this, I urge you to look at what is now happening in western Iraq, where just a few years ago, during the U.S.-led surge, al Qaeda was dealt an even more crippling blow than core al Qaeda has suffered in Pakistan. Yet now it is al Qaeda that is surging back in Iraq, hoisting its black flag over cities like Fallujah and Ramadi, murdering hundreds of innocent Iraqis this year, with violence surging back to 2008 levels. This leads to an important conclusion. While space for core al Qaeda in tribal Pakistan has been shrunk thanks to persistent U.S. action in recent years, new territory where al Qaeda affiliates can find sanctuary has grown significantly during this same period, in the Middle East, North Africa, and Sub-Saharan Africa. Al Qaeda and other Islamist extremist groups have long exploited Muslim-majority countries that have been weakened or fragmented by conflict, and neglected by the international community. They take advantage of these places to recruit, radicalize, and train the next generation of extremist foot soldiers. They use them to plot and plan attacks. That is why al Qaeda and its affiliates first went to Afghanistan in the 1990s. That is why they later turned to Yemen and Somalia in the 2000s. And it is why today they are fighting to build sanctuaries in Syria, Iraq and Libya. Several factors make the prospect of al Qaeda sanctuaries in these three countries especially dangerous for the U.S. and our allies. The first is their respective locations. Syria and Iraq are in the heart of the Arab Middle East, bordering key American allies like Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Turkey, and Israel. Libya and Syria are Mediterranean countries-comparatively easy to reach by terrorist recruits from the West, in contrast to remote Afghanistan and Pakistan. And Libya is also adjacent to the vast Sahel, with its weak and poorly governed states. In the face of the clear, present, and increasing threat to America and our allies from these places, American policymakers have signaled that any involvement by the U.S. military is for all intents and purposes off the table. This means that the United States is not effectively able to assist our local allies in combating the rise of al Qaeda in these countries.  It also means that we are failing to help deal with the underlying conditions that are making al Qaeda’s resurgence possible. Put very bluntly, I do not see a credible or coherent U.S. strategy right now for exactly those countries--Syria, Iraq, and Libya—that most threaten to emerge as al Qaeda’s newest and most dangerous footholds—places, from which terrorist attacks against our homeland can and will originate. According to one estimate, there are now more foreign fighters in Syria than in Iraq and Afghanistan combined over the past ten years. This failure, it should be added, has consequences for our national security that extend far beyond counterterrorism. Across the Middle East and beyond, the credibility of American leadership is being questioned as it has not been for a very longtime. Among friends and enemies alike, there are doubts about our staying power; questions about our reliability as an ally; and suspicions that, at the end of the day, we will hesitate to back up our promises and historic commitments with the use of force—if necessary. This is the reality of how the United States is seen right now in too much of the rest of the world. Some in Washington look at what is happening in Syria, Iraq, and Libya and downplay their significance for our security, and with it, our need to get involved. Yes, al February 2014

Qaeda-affiliated groups are there, these skeptics say, but they are mostly focused on fighting other Muslims. The situation is confusing and chaotic, we are told, and these Sunni-Shia conflicts have gone on forever. It is “someone else’s civil war” is a familiar refrain we are hearing often again. But keep in mind that twenty years ago, during the 1990s, most people in Washington dismissed what was happening in Afghanistan as “someone else’s civil war.” And thus began the road to 9/11. I fear very much that twenty years from now or less, someone else will be sitting here, testifying before this committee, saying much the same about pulling back from Syria, Libya, and Iraq today. What do I believe the U.S. can and should do now to protect our people against future 9-11 attacks? First, I do not advocate sending tens of thousands of troops to these countries. Nor do I believe it is within our power, or our responsibility, to solve every problem these countries face. These are hollow straw man arguments against what we can and should do. And there is much we can and should be doing today that we are not. In Syria, we can much more aggressively and creatively provide militarily-relevant support to non-extremist rebel forces. In Iraq, we can make clear to the government that we are willing to support Iraqis against al Qaeda with U.S. airpower, as well as putting a small number of embedded advisors on the ground, while using that increased assistance as leverage to encourage political reconciliation. In Libya, we can put in place a large-scale, well-resourced, U.S.-led effort to build up new Libyan army and security forces as quickly as possible—rather than the balkanized, poorly-resourced, decades-long effort now in place. And in Afghanistan, we can choose not to squander the gains of the past decade and dishonor the brave Americans who lost or risked their lives there. Instead we can keep a sufficient follow-on military presence to sustain the increasingly capable and courageous Afghan National Security Forces in our shared fight against al Qaeda and the Taliban, that will also safeguard the gains that have been made in human rights and human development more broadly, particularly among Afghan women, all of which will be erased if the Taliban returns. None of these possible actions by the U.S. represent simple or quick solutions. There are no easy solutions to the problems here. But there are smart, measured steps we can take that will put us in a stronger position to deal with the evolving threats we face and that will ultimately make us safer as a country here at home. It is worth noting that, in all of these countries, we have repeatedly seen that al Qaeda and its extremist vision for society are rejected by the overwhelming majority of people living there. In Iraq, Syria, and Libya, we have seen popular, grassroots movements rise up against al Qaeda and other extremist groups. The question is whether we provide these anti-extremist popular movements with the help and support they need to succeed, or leave them on their own to fail. This is especially urgent in Syria right now. In just the past several days, there has been a grassroots uprising in the northern party of the country against the al Qaeda affiliate in Syria, because al

Qaeda has alienated the local population with its brutality and violence. The question is, do we now come to the aid of these rebels who are in a two front fight against al Qaeda and Bashar al Assad—which is to say, against Iran—and who desperately need our help? If we fail to do so, and al Qaeda defeats them, the consequences will be dire not only for Syria, but for our own national security. Let me make one final point. The Obama Administration has repeatedly narrowed the rhetorical scope of this conflict from what it criticized as an amorphous and open-ended “war on terrorism” to an armed conflict against a discrete and identifiable group: al Qaeda and its affiliates. Our goal, the President has said, is to disrupt and ultimately dismantle the entity known as al Qaeda and those affiliated with it. There is an argument for this approach. After all, the enemy we are fighting is not “terrorism,” which is simply a tactic. But an organization-centric approach to counterterrorism, as the Obama Administration has advocated, is ultimately inadequate because al Qaeda as an organization can be eviscerated, but it will regenerate as long as the ideology that inspires it survives. An organization-centric approach may also inadvertently cause us to miss the threat posed by groups that share al Qaeda’s ideology and ambitions to harm us, but that lack meaningful organizational ties to it. Indeed, it seems plausible that this is part of what happened in Benghazi in 2012. The fact is, ultimate success in the struggle we are in depends not simply on the death of particular terrorist leaders or the destruction of a particular terrorist group, important though that is. Rather, it requires the discrediting of violent Islamist extremism as a worldview. And let me underscore here, the enemy is violent Islamist extremism—a political ideology that seeks to justify totalitarian governance by perverting religion. The enemy, we can never stress enough, is not Islam itself. Nor, I would add, our enemy is political Islam per se. In fact, there are political Islamists who are neither violent continued on page 12

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KNOW YOUR ENEMY

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Trainor write. “If AQI has morphed into a kind of mafia then they are not going to be blowing up buildings,” Obama said. Petraeus pointed to a failed terrorist attack in Scotland in 2007 as an example of why Obama’s thinking was wrong. “Well, think about the Glasgow airport,” Petraeus warned. The general, according to Gordon and Trainor, “also noted the potential of AQI to expand its influence to Syria and Lebanon.” The debate between Obama and Petraeus may seem like ancient history after more than five years have passed. And Obama went on to “end” the war in Iraq, or so he claimed during his reelection campaign and thereafter, by withdrawing all of America’s forces at the end of 2011. The truth, however, is that the disagreement between Obama and Petraeus still resonates today. Al Qaeda has come roaring back in Iraq, capturing significant territory in Fallujah, Ramadi, and elsewhere. Obama does not believe this is a major concern. And, just as Petraeus warned, AQI has “expanded its influence” in neighboring Syria as a result

the Islamic world. Al Qaeda’s jihadists are not just terrorists; they are political revolutionaries. They have sought, since al Qaeda’s founding in 1988, to overturn the existing political order in various Muslim-ruled countries. Al Qaeda’s ideologues believed that the status quo before the 2011 Arab uprisings was heretical. They believed that Muslim rulers had abandoned true Islam by neglecting to implement sharia law as defined by al Qaeda. They also believed, and continue to believe, that an imaginary Zionist-Crusader conspiracy has prevented the real believers from achieving success. Therefore, al Qaeda deduced, the conspirators must be confronted. By striking America, al Qaeda’s most senior leaders believed, they could cause the U.S. government eventually to withdraw its support for various Muslim rulers and Israel. According to bin Laden and other al Qaeda thinkers, American support was the main reason why early jihadist efforts to overthrow Muslim dictatorships ended in bloody fiascos. Strike America, al Qaeda argued, and it will crumble just as the Soviets ell over 100,000 Syrians have been killed since the did after their emuprising against Assad’s regime began; thousands barrassing loss to of them have been killed by al Qaeda’s branches. the mujahedeen in Afghanistan in the In Obama’s estimation, al Qaeda’s victims inside 1980s. As America’s Syria and Iraq are not America’s concern. influence wanes, al Qaeda’s theory of the world continued, the of the revolution against Bashar al-Assad. Other al Qaeda apostate tyrants who rule throughout the Muslim world will affiliates have joined AQI in the fight for Syria. become susceptible to the jihadists’ revolution. Al Qaeda and But there is something even more fundamental about like-minded jihadists can then replace the dictators with pure the Obama-Petraeus debate. It goes to the heart of how we Islamic states based on sharia law. And these states can then define al Qaeda itself. link up to resurrect the Caliphate, a supranational Islamic More than a dozen years since the September 11, 2001, empire that was dissolved in 1924 and that has taken on a terrorist attacks, the United States is still confused about al mythical status in al Qaeda’s thinking.   Qaeda’s goals and even how the group founded by Osama This is how al Qaeda has long seen the world and why bin Laden is organized. The intellectual confusion is pervaAmerica was struck on September 11, 2001. It is why U.S. sive—and some of it is deliberate. interests were attacked well before 9/11 and have continued to be targeted ever since. Al Qaeda’s conspiratorial view of POLITICAL REVOLUTIONARIES Middle Eastern politics, its deep hatred of the West, and its Osama bin Laden will always be remembered for his resentment of Western influence in the Islamic world made success in attacking the United States within its own borders, such attacks necessary. thereby shattering Americans’ illusion of security. To this Al Qaeda has repeatedly made this strategy clear. In day, if you listen to many commentators, this is al Qaeda’s his 2002 letter to the American people, Osama bin Laden principal reason for existence. It is widely thought that if emphasized that “our fight against these [Muslim] governal Qaeda is not striking targets in the West, then the group ments is not separate from our fight against you.” Removing must be close to defeat. This is simply not true. “these governments is an obligation upon us, and a necessary Terrorizing the United States and its Western allies step to free the Ummah [community of believers], to make was always a tactic, a step toward achieving al Qaeda’s real the Shariah the supreme law and to regain Palestine.” goal—power for its leaders and their ideology in the heart of In private correspondence recovered in bin Laden’s Abbot-

W

tabad compound nine years later, the terror master repeatedly made the same point. Bin Laden emphasized the necessity of striking American interests as a step towards building a true Islamic state. Bin Laden worried that, however much the United States had been weakened since 9/11, the world’s lone superpower retained the ability to destroy an al Qaeda-style nation should it arise. The “more we can conduct operations against America, the closer we get to uniting our efforts to establish an Islamic State,” bin Laden or one of his top lieutenants wrote in 2010. Still, al Qaeda’s leaders believed that the “time to establish an Islamic state is near, and the jihadist ideology is spreading abroad.” Al Qaeda adjusted its tactics in the post-9/11 world, especially with American troops on the ground in Iraq and Afghanistan. Bin Laden wrote in another letter that his organization must “concentrate” its “jihad efforts in areas where the conditions are ideal for us to fight.” Bin Laden concluded that “Iraq and Afghanistan are two good examples.” The centrality of the Iraq war, from al Qaeda’s perspective, was emphasized in a letter from Ayman al Zawahiri, then bin Laden’s top deputy, to the head of Al Qaeda in Iraq in 2005. Zawahiri wrote: “I want to be the first to congratulate you for what God has blessed you with in terms of fighting in the heart of the Islamic world, which was formerly the field for major battles in Islam’s history, and what is now the place for the greatest battle of Islam in this era.” The very fight that Barack Obama has long seen as tangential to al Qaeda’s operations, and even similar to Mafia-style crime, was viewed quite differently by al Qaeda’s leaders. It was the “greatest battle of Islam in this era.” This was not empty rhetoric. Numerous public and private statements from al Qaeda emphasized the centrality of Iraq and their desire to establish an Islamic state in the heart of the Middle East. Al Qaeda has continued to adjust its operations in the wake of the 2011 Arab uprisings. In Syria, the organization has devoted a substantial amount of its resources to defeating Bashar al-Assad’s regime and establishing a new Islamic regime. Elsewhere, in countries ruled by newly installed Islamist governments, such as Tunisia, al Qaeda initially advised jihadists to refrain from fighting altogether. In such countries it was best, al Qaeda said, to concentrate on recruiting and to build a base of popular support for its ideology. Over time, that strategy has evolved, however, as the Tunisian government has cracked down on al Qaedaallied organizations. But everywhere, the goal is the same: to advance a political revolution that al Qaeda sparked more than a quarter of a century ago.

AL QAEDA’S GLOBAL NETWORK

Once you understand al Qaeda’s true aspirations, the structure of its organization begins to make sense. Although

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much of al Qaeda’s network remains clandestine, a vast amount of information on its operations is available to the public. The days when al Qaeda was a small cadre have long since passed. From its earliest days, al Qaeda devoted a substantial share of its efforts to insurgencies ranging from Chechnya to North Africa. Before 9/11, most of the recruits who passed through al Qaeda-sponsored training camps in Afghanistan were tasked with doing something other than attacking America. “Some experts even believe that the ratio of insurgent fighters to terrorists in al Qaeda’s camps may be 15 to 1,” notes the START Database’s website, which is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. This created a deep well from which al Qaeda could draw manpower. Estimates of the number of jihadists trained in al Qaeda’s camps prior to 9/11 vary, but easily totaled 10,000. (U.S. intelligence estimates cited by the 9/11 Commission range from 10,000 to 20,000 fighters. Other estimates are much higher.) Only 19 of these trainees attacked the United States on 9/11. Going back to his days in Sudan in the early 1990s, bin Laden believed that his al Qaeda was the vanguard of the global jihadist movement. According to the 9/11 Commission, bin Laden “had a vision of himself as head of an international jihad confederation.” Bin Laden established an “Islamic Army Shura,” which “was to serve as the coordinating body for the consortium of terrorist groups with which he was forging alliances.” The Shura “was composed of his own al Qaeda Shura together with leaders or representatives of terrorist organizations that were still independent.” As of the early 1990s, bin Laden and al Qaeda pursued a “pattern of expansion through building alliances” and thus had laid the “groundwork for a true global terrorist network.” Throughout the 1990s and thereafter, al Qaeda continued to pursue versions of this original vision. In some cases, other jihadist groups were outright absorbed into bin Laden’s joint venture. In other instances, al Qaeda remained closely allied with jihadist organizations that did not formally merge with it. Al Qaeda also deliberately spawned new groups to expand its influence. Al Qaeda’s policy of aggressive geographic expansion has been largely successful of late. While the group once relied almost entirely on a network of secret operatives embedded within countries ruled by hostile governments, al Qaeda now has formal branches (often called “affiliates”) operating in Africa, throughout the Middle East, and in South Asia. Each branch is fighting to create an Islamic state and has openly declared its loyalty to Ayman al Zawahiri, bin Laden’s successor as the head of al Qaeda. Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) is headquartered in Yemen and led by Nasir al Wuhayshi, Osama bin Laden’s former protégé. In August 2013, Zawahiri appointed Wuhayshi as the general manager of al Qaeda’s global operations. This gives Wuhayshi great power across the network. Wuhayshi has been experimenting with al Qaeda-style governance, even creating a new brand (Ansar al Sharia, or Defenders of Sharia) for his efforts. Ansar al Sharia in Yemen was the first of several similarly named jihadist groups to emerge following the Arab uprisings. Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) took over much of Mali in 2012 until the French intervened in January 2013. The group continues to operate throughout West and North Africa. In Somalia, another al Qaeda branch, Al Shabaab, continues to hold some territory and wage an insurgency against African forces. The war in Syria has been a boon for al Qaeda. Jabhat al Nusra and the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, the successor

to Al Qaeda in Iraq, have thousands of fighters on the ground in Syria and Iraq. The two have quarreled over leadership and other matters. But they are still doing a considerable amount of damage while probably controlling more territory than al Qaeda has ever held before. There are other al Qaeda-allied groups operating inside Syria as well. In addition to these five official branches, there are numerous jihadist groups that have said they are part of al Qaeda’s global jihad. And in South Asia, al Qaeda continues to operate as part of a terror “syndicate,” owing to its decades-long ties to extremist organizations that share its ideology. Al Qaeda continues to cooperate closely with the Taliban, Lashkar-e-Taiba, and an alphabet soup of other groups based in Pakistan. They are jointly seeking to reestablish the Taliban’s Islamic state in Afghanistan. The degree of command and control exercised by al Qaeda’s senior leaders over this global network is hotly debated. But the minimalists have to ignore a substantial body of evidence showing that Zawahiri and his lieutenants maintain a significant amount of influence, despite the management problems that any human organization faces.

THE ENEMY GETS A VOTE

The debate between Obama and Petraeus in 2008 has not been resolved. If anything, Obama now defines al Qaeda more narrowly than ever before, even as al Qaeda’s many branches have become more virulent. To hear the Obama administration explain the current state of the war, you would never know that al Qaeda seeks to establish Islamic states, or that the group has made stunning advances toward this end. Instead, the president and his surrogates consistently draw a hard line between al Qaeda’s “core” in South Asia and “affiliated” groups everywhere else. Some are quick to brand virtually any jihadist group, even if it is openly pro-al Qaeda and has well-known ties to one or more of al Qaeda’s branches, as a “local” nuisance that should not be considered part of al Qaeda’s network. Such arguments miss the entire reason for al Qaeda’s existence, which has always been to acquire power in “local” settings. This is why al Qaeda has always devoted most of its resources to fueling insurgencies. It would be naïve to assume that the Obama administration’s definition of al Qaeda is not directly tied to its preferred policies. President Obama is dedicated to decreasing the American military’s footprint, even as al Qaeda has increased its own. U.S. troops were pulled out of Iraq by the end of 2011. And a short-lived surge of forces in Afghanistan was ended, with the goal of removing most of America’s forces in the near future. While Obama argued in 2008 that

Afghanistan, not Iraq, must be our “central front,” it quickly became apparent that this was political rhetoric, not a real strategy. Drone strikes, Special Forces raids, and other covert activities are sufficient, in the Obama administration’s view. This is not to suggest that large-scale American military deployments are necessary everywhere al Qaeda’s branches prosper. But in the coming months, there simply will be no central front in America’s fight against al Qaeda and its allies. President Obama’s plan for fighting al Qaeda, therefore, rests on a gamble. As long as al Qaeda’s various branches do not successfully attack the continental United States, then the United States will not treat them as first-order security threats. In countries where America has semi-reliable allies, others will take the fight to al Qaeda. In countries where no allied forces exist, such as Syria, America and the West will simply hope for the best. Well over 100,000 Syrians have been killed since the uprising against Assad’s regime began; thousands of them have been killed by al Qaeda’s branches. In Obama’s estimation, al Qaeda’s victims inside Syria and Iraq are not America’s concern. But there are already indications that Obama’s understanding of the enemy cannot be sustained. Al Qaeda’s branches, especially Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), and closely allied groups, such as the Pakistani Taliban, now threaten the U.S. homeland. The threats to American security from al Qaeda’s global network are multiplying, not receding. And during a press briefing on October 30, an anonymous senior White House official explained to reporters that Al Qaeda in Iraq and Syria is “really a transnational threat network” now. “This is really a major and increasing threat to Iraq’s stability, it’s [an] increasing threat to our regional partners, and it’s an increasing threat to us,” the official continued. That is, General Petraeus had a point about Iraq all along. Meanwhile, al Qaeda strives on towards its real goal. It is a difficult course, and success is far from certain. But history tells us that a lot of carnage can be wrought in pursuit of violent fantasies. In one of the documents recovered in his Abbottabad compound, Osama bin Laden wrote that “the jihad war is ongoing, and on several fronts.” The strategy is simple: “Once America is weak, we can build our Muslim state.” n Used with permission of the Weekly Standard, January 20, 2014. Thomas Joscelyn is senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies. http://www.weeklystandard.com/print/articles/know-yourenemy_774088.html.

A C A Y U G A P R E S S C O M P A N Y

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“Income Inequality” in America Missing the Point of Helping the Poor

Blocks to social mobility W. Bradford Wilcox Reprinted from Slate In his State of the Union address, President Obama returned to a theme he and many have been hitting hard in recent months: namely, that the American Dream is in trouble and that growing economic inequality is largely to blame. In a speech to the Center for American Progress last month, Obama said: “The combined trends of increased inequality and decreasing mobility pose a fundamental threat to the American dream.” Likewise, New York Times columnist Paul Krugman recently wrote that the nation “claims to reward the best and brightest regardless of family background” but in practice shuts out “children of the middle and working classes.” .... Why? What are the factors preventing poor children from getting ahead? An important new Harvard study that looks at the best community data on mobility in America suggests a cause progressives may find discomforting. ... The new Harvard study asks: Which “factors are the strongest predictors of upward mobility in multiple variable regressions”? 1) Family structure. Of all the factors most predictive of economic mobility in America, one factor clearly stands out in their study: family structure. By their reckoning, when it comes to mobility, “the strongest and most robust predictor is the fraction of children with single parents.” They find that children raised in communities with high percentages of single mothers are significantly less likely to experience absolute and relative mobility. Moreover, “[c]hildren of married parents also have higher rates of upward mobility if they live in communities with fewer single parents.” In other words it looks like a married village is more likely to raise the economic prospects of a poor child. What makes this finding particularly significant is that this is the first major study showing that rates of single parenthood at the community level are linked to children’s economic opportunities over the course of their lives. A lot of research—including new research from the Brookings Institution—has shown us that kids are more likely to climb the income ladder when they are raised by two, married parents. But this is the first study to show that lower-income kids from both single- and married-parent families are more likely to succeed if they hail from a community with lots of two-parent families. 2) Racial and economic segregation. According to this new study, economic and racial segregation are also important characteristics of communities that do not foster economic mobility. Children growing up in communities that are racially segregated, or cluster lots of poor kids together, do not have a great shot at the American dream. In fact, in their study, racial segregation is one of only two key factors —the other is family structure—that is consistently associated with both absolute and relative mobility in America. 3) School quality. Another powerful predictor of absolute mobility for lower-income children is the quality of schools in their communities. Chetty, et al. measure this in the study by looking at high-school dropout rates. Their takeaway: Poor kids are more likely to make it in America when they have access to schools that do a good job of educating them. 4) Social capital. In a finding that is bound to warm the heart of their colleague, Harvard political scientist Robert Putnam, Chetty and his team find that communities with more social capital enjoy significantly higher levels of absolute mobility for poor children. That is, communities across America that have high levels of religiosity, civic engagement, and voter involvement are more likely to lift the fortunes of their poorest members. 5) Income inequality. Finally, consistent with the diagnosis of Messrs. Obama and Krugman, Chetty and his team note that income inequality within communities is correlated with lower levels of mobility. However, its predictive power—measured in their study by a Gini coefficient—is comparatively weak: According to their results, in statistical models with all of the five factors they designated as Page 6

most important, economic inequality was not a statistically significant predictor of absolute or relative mobility. n Excerpted from Slate magazine, January 20. 2014, “Family Matters” that cites the study, “Where is the Land of Opportunity?: The Geography of Intergenerational Mobility in the United States,” authored by Harvard

Cash assistance doesn’t work Aparna Mathur Reprinted from Real Clear Markets Fifty years have passed since President Lyndon B. Johnson declared an “unconditional war on poverty”. More recently, President Obama has declared a new war, this time on income inequality. This shift in focus is somewhat misguided. With 47 million individuals still living in poverty, the first war is far from over. Defining income inequality as “the biggest challenge of our time” further detracts attention from the poor since a change in the income distribution across all households says little about how people are faring in absolute terms at the bottom of the distribution. The fundamental challenge facing this generation is the same one that faced President Johnson. The fundamental issue is about poverty, and not about whether incomes at the top are ten or fifteen times higher than for the bottom. While these latter statistics may serve a useful political end in stoking class wars, they do little to help people in need. Aside from the fact that reducing income inequality per se is an ill-defined goal, a very basic issue with defining the problem of income inequality is the lack of a consistent measure of household income. Researchers have come up with different responses to the question “is income inequality trending up or down” on the basis of these different definitions of income. In a recent December 2013 report, the Congressional Budget Office divided all U.S. households into five groups of equal size (quintiles), on the basis of their before-tax income. The CBO definition of before-tax includes government transfers to these households. As per this report, in 2010, households in the lowest quintile (bottom 20 percent) received 5.1 percent of all before-tax income, or about $24,100 per household. Those in the middle fifth received 14.2 percent or $65,400 per household. Households in the top quintile received 51.9 percent or about $239,100 per household. In other words, households in the top income quintile received an income share that was ten times that for the lower income quintiles. The corresponding numbers for after-tax income are 6.2 percent for the bottom quintile, 15.4 percent for the middle quintile and 48.1 percent for the top quintile. Trends since 1979 suggest that households at the very top of the income distribution have increased after-tax incomes at a much faster pace than households at the bottom. The much cited paper by economists Thomas Piketty and Emmanuel Saez confirms this trend, though it fails to account for taxes and transfers. Other economists however counter these results by using a different definition of income. In a 2013 paper, Richard Burkhauser and colleagues contend that using a broader measure of income, that includes accrued capital gains, income inequality has narrowed between 1989 and 2007. The results for widening income inequality are further weakened when we use consumption as the measure of household welfare. In my own research co-authored with Kevin Hassett, we find that consumption inequality is a lot narrower than income inequality. Further, we document that there has been an increase in material standards of living even for low income households, resulting in a narrowing of inequality in terms of access to everyday household appliances and electronic devices. The percentage of low-income households with a computer rose to 47.7% from 19.8% in 2001. The percentage of low-income homes with six or more rooms (excluding bathrooms) rose to 30% from 21.9% over the same period.  Similar increases can be documented for appliances like air-conditioners, dishwashers, microwaves, cell phones and other household items. However, despite these secular improvements in living

conditions, the census bureau documents that more than 47 million people live in poverty in America today. We are now in the fifth year of an economic recovery that does not seem like a recovery to most people in the labor market. There are more than 10 million unemployed workers, of which nearly 4 million have been jobless for longer than 27 weeks. In addition, there are another 10 million who are either in involuntary part-time jobs, or are too discouraged to look for work. Therefore, I would argue that the focus on income inequality is somewhat misplaced. This is essentially a problem of poverty. And when these high rates of poverty exist in an economy with low economic mobility as is true of the U.S., the problem is exacerbated. What policies can we encourage in order to improve economic mobility and the access to high-wage high-skilled jobs that are one of the primary drivers of economic success? Access to high quality education and schools is extremely important as an investment into children’s futures. Poor quality schooling can limit an individual’s earning ability. Research has shown that the quality of local public education is improved in areas where there is more competition due to a large number of school districts or a greater availability of nonpublic education. The labor market poses serious concerns about the future livelihoods of the millions of unemployed workers, particularly those who are long-term unemployed. One solution that is being proposed is the extension of unemployment benefits to the long-term unemployed. I believe that the unemployment benefit programs have to be supplemented by skills training and greater help with matching workers to jobs. It is simply not enough to keep extending benefits if at the end of the benefit period, the worker is still unemployed. The goal of any such program should be to train the worker to transition to a new job, rather than to simply provide cash benefits to allow them to meet their basic needs for a limited time period. For a worker who stays unemployed for more than six months, the likelihood of finding a job is extremely low and is unlikely to improve without active help. Towards this end, workers who have been long-term unemployed should be provided training and then placed in jobs through wage-subsidy programs that allow some share of the wages to be paid by the employer and the rest to be paid by the unemployment insurance program. This would allow employers to test and see if the match with the prospective employee is a good one, while at the same time it would allow workers to receive on the job training and gain experience with the likelihood that they will be able to keep the job. Raising minimum wages is a particularly bad idea when we think of high youth and teenage unemployment rates. Workers under age 25 make up half of those paid the federal minimum wage (or less). Instead, research suggests that internship or apprenticeship programs may improve employment prospects and also boost college attendance. Minimum wages are also not a tool to fight poverty. By some estimates, less than 25 percent of minimum wage workers live at or below the poverty line based on family cash income. An alternative to the minimum wage is the Earned Income Tax Credit program. The EITC arguably is one of the federal government’s most efficient means of encouraging work and fighting poverty. As per the Census Bureau, the EITC lifted 5.4 million people above the poverty line in 2010.While the EITC has some disadvantages, such as the significant tax penalties on earners in the phase-out range, it has been shown to encourage labor force participation for single mothers, and has lifted millions of adults and children out of poverty. To conclude, the bulk of the evidence suggests that programs that enable people to work or transition to work are more effective at fighting poverty, than simple cash assistance programs. As such, wage-subsidy programs that combine skills training, and tax credit programs like the EITC are a better bet today to get the unemployed back in the labor market and improve the lives of low-income individuals. n Reprinted with permission from Real Clear Markets, Jan. 22, 2014. http://www.realclearmarkets.com/articles/2014/01/22/when_it_comes_ to_fighting_poverty_cash_assistance_doesnt_work_100855.html  

The Herald Examiner


FEATURE

Obama income inequality plans John Merline Reprinted from Investor’s Business Daily In his State of the Union speech, President Obama is expected to make income inequality the centerpiece of his address. Political analysts say it’s a way for him to connect with a public still anxious about the tepid economic recovery—now in its fifth year—and upset with Obama over the disastrous rollout of ObamaCare. They also see it as a way to rally his liberal base in advance of the 2014 midterm elections. But what Obama is unlikely to say in his lengthy address is that income inequality—as measured by the Census Bureau’s Gini index—has increased faster on his watch than it did under any of the three previous presidents.

Nor is he likely to mention that, on his watch, inequality has reached its highest level since the Census started recording it back in 1947. And Obama is almost certain to avoid mentioning that the policies he’s pushing now have either had little impact on inequality or have provided few benefits to those they’re supposed to help. Or that one of his policy priorities is likely to increase inequality, not reduce it. Here’s a closer look at some of Obama’s proposals. Taxes. Raising taxes on the rich might seem like a good way to close the income gap. But inequality rose faster under President Clinton, who raised taxes, than it did under President George W. Bush, who cut them. In fact, the inequality measure was the same when Bush left the White House as when he entered it. Plus, the rich now pay a greater share of total income taxes than at any time in decades, yet inequality is also higher than ever. Minimum wage. Obama will also call for another round of minimum-wage hikes. But raising the minimum wage hasn’t reduced inequality in the past. A 2007 law boosted the federal minimum wage over three years to $7.25 an hour—a 41% increase while inflation has climbed just 12% since that year. Yet inequality was much higher in 2012 than it was in 2007. The federal minimum wage climbed 21% under Clinton, years during which inequality also climbed. And the most recent wage hikes haven’t done much to help those just starting in the job market. In fact, the unemployment rate among 16- to 19-year-olds is 20% today, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That’s up from 16% before the increases started in July 2007. Meanwhile, real median household income is 7% below where it was before the minimum-wage hikes took place, according to Sentier Research. Infrastructure spending. Another likely proposal from Obama is to increase spending on roads, bridges and other infrastructure projects. Obama has long looked to this as a way to boost the number of good-paying jobs. But federal February 2014

transportation spending is already 22% higher than it was before Obama took office, with little to show for it. Promise Zones. Obama has already proposed setting up five “Promise Zones,” economically distressed areas that will get extra federal help and some tax breaks. This isn’t a new idea, but a variation on the “enterprise zone” concept championed by conservative lawmaker Jack Kemp. The idea is to encourage businesses to grow and create jobs in troubled areas by cutting red tape, lowering taxes and providing other incentives. Clinton enacted several “Empowerment Zones” while president. But the effectiveness of these zones is entirely unclear, with several studies finding little overall improvement in the areas. A 2009 study by the Public Policy Institute of California, for example, found that state’s enterprise zone program “has no effect on job or business creation.” College aid. Another Obama favorite is to call for more college aid. On the surface, it makes sense. People with college degrees earn far more than those without them, so making college more affordable should end up raising income levels. The problem is that federal aid has already exploded in recent years—it’s up more than 80% since 2003, according to the College Board. But that hasn’t made a dent in college costs. In fact, average net tuition—after accounting for grants and special tax breaks—at private four-year colleges has been virtually flat over those same years. The average list price, however, shot up 23%. Average net tuition at public four-year colleges has climbed 59%, despite all this extra federal help. It would appear, then, that increases in aid are fueling tuition inflation, not making college more affordable. Immigration. Like Obama, big business has been pushing for immigration reform. They see it as a way to cut labor costs and boost profits. Marriott International CEO Arne Sorenson recently called for “a functioning immigration system that helps us staff positions that might otherwise go unfilled.” And 208 CEOs signed a letter to Obama calling for “a new visa system for lower-skilled workers.” But while a flood of low-income workers might be good for big business, it’s not likely to be so good for those struggling at the bottom of the income ladder. Harvard immigration expert George Borjas found that immigration increases from 1960 through 2000 cut wages of low-skilled black men and boosted their unemployment rate. And when the Congressional Budget Office looked at the Senate immigration bill, it found that it would depress the overall average wage somewhat for the first 10 years. Even backers of immigration reform admit that the Senate bill would hurt low-income wage earners, but claim that those ill effects will be concentrated mainly among earlier immigrants. Either way, it’s not exactly a recipe for reducing income inequality. n Read more at Investor’s Business Daily: http://news.investors. com/012414-687632-obamas-state-of-the-union-inequality-ideas-havefailed.htm#ixzz2rVVMtTH3

Unequal distribution of freedom Alejandro Chafuen Reprinted from Vision and Values While the church and Christian moralists have always spoken about the rich and the poor, and condemned those who put wealth, or anything else, above eternal life, it was only in the 20th century when church authorities began to make frequent empirical statements about the number of rich and poor. Pope Francis is the latest example. He writes in the latest apostolic exhortation that “While the earnings of a minority are growing exponentially, so too is the gap separating the majority from the prosperity enjoyed by those happy few.” During the 20th century, inequalities of wealth became a favorite topic of intellectuals of different persuasions. Vladimir I. Lenin developed his theories of imperialism touching upon the topic of nations continuously getting rich while others grew poor. His views on how the rich capitalist nations exploit others still influence the world today. Corrado Gini, who in 1927 wrote, “The Scientific Basis

of Fascism,” developed a method to measure inequality called the Gini coefficient. The gap between the rich and the poor, measured by this index, led to numerous studies that soon as began to influence moralists of all bents, including those in the Catholic Church. During the second half of the 20th century, economist Raúl Prebisch developed a theory of center-periphery similar to Lenin’s. It stated that as the cards were dealt, the rich countries at the “center” were bound to get richer and exploit the poor countries at the “periphery.” In 1968, the Episcopal Conference of Latin American Catholic Bishops met in Medellin, Colombia. Some of the Medellin document echoed Lenin and Prebisch: “The countries which produce raw materials—especially if they are dependent upon one major export—always remain poor, while the industrialized countries enrich themselves.” Pope Paul VI, in his encyclical Populorum Progressio (1967) used similar language and analysis. He wrote that the economic system left to itself widens the gap between rich and poor nations: “Rich people enjoy rapid growth whereas the poor develop slowly. The imbalance is on the increase.” In “Caritas in Veritate,”Pope Benedict XVI repeated what “John Paul II has already observed: the demarcation line between rich and poor countries is no longer as clear as it was at the time of Populorum Progressio.” Benedict mentioned corruption as exacerbating the problem. But he did not mention that it is precisely those countries with more economic freedom which show lower levels of corruption, and higher levels of economic and human development. The rich can, and at times have, gotten richer at the expense of the poor. This happens when they capture the government and reduce opportunities for the poor. When Paul VI and other religious authorities speak about an economic system “left to itself” they actually mean what they say. This is a system where businessmen make the rules for their own advantage rather than working within a framework of rule of law. That is why John Paul II sided with his predecessors in Centesimus Annus when he criticized the type of capitalism in which “freedom in the economic sector is not circumscribed within a strong juridical framework which places it at the service of human freedom in its totality and sees it as a particular aspect of that freedom, the core of which is ethical and religious.”  Nevertheless, he endorsed a capitalist system “which recognizes the fundamental and positive role of business, the market, private property and the resulting responsibility for the means of production, as well as free human creativity in the economic sector … even though it would perhaps be more appropriate to speak of a ‘business economy,’ ‘market economy’ or simply ‘free economy.’” Hernando de Soto, from the Institute for Liberty and Democracy, showed how an overregulated economy creates such high costs of entrance to the market for the poor, that it ends up excluding them. In addition, and to explain why so many poor can’t improve their lot, I have argued that we need to look into the unequal distribution of economic freedom. The unequal distribution of economic freedom leads to a system where the rich get richer because they are the only ones who can afford the costs of legality. The poor get stuck with little access to legality and poor essential services. In most indices that measure rule of law, only a minority of countries qualify as having a strong and just juridical framework. In those countries the population, as well as moralists, see how the rich who are close to the government continue to enrich themselves even in periods where most of the population is suffering. Unjust inequalities exist, yet saying that the rich get richer and the poor get poorer can still be misleading and dangerous. When speaking about inequality, Gini and Prebisch in the past, and Krugmann, Stiglitz, in the present, use macroeconomics. By its nature, macroeconomics is explained in terms of aggregates, groups and averages. The human person is lost in these aggregates and categories. The Pope and his advisors should be aware of this and should focus more on upward mobility, opportunity, personal responsibility, and family relationships. These factors, rather than redistribution, hold the key to full personal and societal development. n Used with permission. © 2013 by The Center for Vision & Values at Grove City College. http://www.visionandvalues.org/2014/01/unequal-distribution-of-economic-freedom-why-so-many-poor-cant-improve-their-lot/

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CHARACTER

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accomplished. His age and his country are equally full of wonders; and of both he is the chief. If the poetical prediction, uttered a few years before his birth, be true; if indeed it be designed by Providence that the grandest exhibition of human character and human affairs shall be made on this theatre of the Western world; if it be true that, “The four first acts already past,
A fifth shall close the drama with the day, Time’s noblest offspring is the last”;— how could this imposing, swelling, final scene be appropriately opened, how could its intense interest be adequately sustained, but by the introduction of just such a character as our Washington? Washington had attained his manhood when that spark of liberty was struck out in his own country, which has since kindled into a flame, and shot its beams over the earth. In the flow of a century from his birth, the world has changed in science, in arts, in the extent of commerce, in the improvement of navigation, and in all that relates to the civilization of man. But it is the spirit of human freedom, the new elevation of individual man, in his moral, social, and political character, leading the whole long train of other improvements, which e changed mankind’s ideas of political greatness. has most remarkTo commanding talents, and to
success, the ably distinguished the era. Society, in common elements of such greatness, he added a this century, has not disregard of self, a spotlessness of motive, a made its progress, like Chinese skill, by steady submission to every public and private a greater acuteness of duty... ingenuity in trifles; it has not merely lashed itself to an increased speed round the old circles of thought and action; but it has bespeak grateful hearts and a freshened recollection of the assumed a new character; it has raised itself from beneath virtues of the Father of his Country. And it will be so, in governments to a participation in governments; it has mixed all time to come, so long as public virtue is itself an object moral and political objects with the daily pursuits of individual of regard. The ingenuous youth of America will hold up to men; and, with a freedom and strength before altogether themselves the bright model of Washington’s example, and unknown, it has applied to these objects the whole power of study to be what they behold; they will contemplate his the human understanding. It has been the era, in short, when character till all its virtues spread out and display themselves the social principle has triumphed over the feudal principle; to their delighted vision . . . . when society has maintained its rights against military power, Gentlemen, we are at a point of a century from the birth and established, on foundations never hereafter to be shaken, of Washington; and what a century it has been! During its its competency to govern itself. course, the human mind has seemed to proceed with a sort It was the extraordinary fortune of Washington, that, of geometric velocity, accomplishing for human intelligence having been entrusted, in revolutionary times, with the suand human freedom more than had been done in fives or preme military command, and having fulfilled that trust
with tens of centuries preceding. Washington stands at the comequal renown for wisdom and for valor, he should be placed mencement of a new era, as well as at the head of the New at the head of the first government in which an attempt was World. A century from the birth of Washington has changed to be made on a large scale to rear the fabric of social order the world. The country of Washington has been the theatre on the basis of a written constitution and of a pure repreon which a great part of that change has been wrought, and sentative principle. A government was to be established, Washington himself a principal agent by which it has been equals the power with which great moral examples affect the mind. When sublime virtues cease to be abstractions, when they become embodied in human character, and exemplified in human conduct, we should be false to our own nature, if we did not indulge in the spontaneous effusions of our gratitude and our admiration. A true lover of the virtue of patriotism delights to contemplate its purest models; and that love of country may be well suspected which affects to soar so high into the regions of sentiment as to be lost and absorbed in the abstract feeling, and becomes too elevated or too refined to glow with fervor in the commendation or the love of individual benefactors. All this is unnatural. . . . We may be assured, Gentlemen, that he who really loves the thing itself, loves its finest exhibitions. A true friend of his country loves her friends and benefactors, and thinks it no degradation to commend and commemorate them. The voluntary outpouring of the public feeling, made to-day, from the North to the South, and from the East to the West, proves this sentiment to be both just and natural. In the cities and in the villages, in the public temples and in the family circles, among all ages and sexes, gladdened voices to-day

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SCHICKEL CONSTRUCTION

without a throne, without an aristocracy, without castes, orders, or privileges; and this government, instead of being a democracy, existing and acting within the walls of a single city, was to be extended over a vast country, of different climates, interests, and habits, and of various communions of our common Christian faith. The experiment certainly was entirely new. A popular government of this extent, it was evident, could be framed only by carrying into full effect the principle of representation or of delegated power; and the world was to see whether society could, by the strength of this principle, maintain its own peace and good government, carry forward its own great interests, and conduct itself to political renown and glory. By the benignity of Providence, this experiment, so full of interest to us and to our posterity for ever, so full of interest, indeed, to the world in its present generation and in all its generations to come, was suffered to commence under the guidance of Washington. Destined for this high career, he was fitted for it by wisdom, by virtue, by patriotism, by discretion, by whatever can inspire confidence in man toward man. In entering on the untried scenes, early disappointment and the premature extinction of all hope of success would have been certain, had it not been that there did exist throughout the country, in a most extraordinary degree, an unwavering trust in him who stood at the helm. I remarked, Gentlemen, that the whole world was and is interested in the result of this experiment. And is it not so? Do we deceive ourselves, or is it true that at this moment the career which this government is running is among the most attractive objects to the civilized world? Do we deceive ourselves, or is it true that at this moment that love of liberty and that understanding of its true principles which are flying over the whole earth, as on the wings of all the winds, are really and truly of American origin? . . . Gentlemen, the spirit of human liberty and of free government, nurtured and grown into strength and beauty in America, has stretched its course into the midst of the nations. Like an emanation from Heaven, it has gone forth, and it will not return void. It must change, it is fast changing, the face of the earth. Our great, our high duty is to show, in our own example, that this spirit is a spirit of health as well as a spirit of power; that its benignity is as great as its strength; that its efficiency to secure individual rights, social relations, and moral order, is equal to the irresistible force with which it prostrates principalities and powers. The world, at this moment, is regarding us with a willing, but something of a fearful admiration. Its deep and awful anxiety is to learn whether free states may be stable, as well as free; whether popular power may be trusted, as well as feared; in short, whether wise, regular, and virtuous selfgovernment is a vision for the contemplation of theorists, or a truth established, illustrated, and brought into practice

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in the country of Washington. Gentlemen, for the earth which we inhabit, and the whole circle of the sun, for all the unborn races of mankind, we seem to hold in our hands, for their weal or woe, the fate of this experiment. If we fail, who shall venture the repetition? If our example shall prove to be one, not of encouragement, but of terror, not fit to be imitated, but fit only to be shunned, where else shall the world look for free models? If this great Western Sun be struck out of the firmament, at what other fountain shall the lamp of liberty hereafter be lighted? What other orb shall emit a ray to glimmer, even, on the darkness of the world? There is no danger of our overrating or overstating the important part which we are now acting in human affairs. It should not flatter our personal self-respect, but it should reanimate our patriotic virtues, and inspire us with a deeper and more solemn sense, both of our privileges and of our duties. We cannot wish better for our country, nor for the world, than that the same spirit which influenced Washington may influence all who succeed him; and that the same blessing from above, which attended his efforts, may also attend theirs. The principles of Washington’s administration are not left doubtful. They are to be found in the Constitution itself, in the great measures recommended and approved by him, in his speeches to Congress, and in that most interesting paper, his Farewell Address to the People of the United States. The success of the government under his administration is the highest proof of the soundness of these principles. And, after an experience of thirty-five years, what is there which an enemy could condemn? What is there which either his friends, or the friends of the country, could wish to have been otherwise? I speak, of course, of great measures and leading principles.

A MAN OF PRINCIPLE

In the first place, all his measures were right in their intent. He stated the whole basis
of his own great character, when he told the country, in the homely phrase of the proverb,
that honesty is the best policy. One of the most striking things ever said of him is, that
“he changed mankind’s ideas of political greatness.” To commanding talents, and to
success, the common elements of such greatness, he added a disregard of self, a spotlessness of motive, a steady submission to every public and private duty, which threw
far into the shade the whole crowd of vulgar great. The object of his regard was the whole
country. No part of it was enough to fill his enlarged patriotism. His love of glory, so far
as that may be supposed to have influenced him at all, spurned every thing short of
general approbation. It would have been nothing to him, that his partisans or his favorites outnumbered, or outvoted, or outmanaged, or outclamored, those of other leaders. He had
no favorites; he rejected all partisanship; and, acting honestly for the universal good, he deserved, what he has so richly enjoyed, the universal love. His principle it was to act right, and to trust the people for support; his principle it was not to follow the lead of sinister and selfish ends, nor to rely on the little arts of party

delusion to obtain public sanction for such a course. Born for his country and for the world, he did not give up to party what was meant for mankind. The consequence is, that his fame is as durable as his principles, as lasting as truth and virtue themselves. While the hundreds whom party excitement, and temporary circumstances, and casual combinations, have raised into transient notoriety, sink again, like thin bubbles, bursting and dissolving into the great ocean, Washington’s fame is like the rock which bounds that ocean, and at whose feet its billows are destined to break harmlessly for ever. The maxims upon which Washington conducted our foreign relations were few and simple. The first was an entire and indisputable impartiality towards foreign states. He adhered to this rule of public conduct, against very strong inducements to depart from it, and when the popularity of the moment seemed to favor such a departure. In the next place, he maintained true dignity and unsullied honor in all communications with foreign states. It was among the high duties devolved upon him, to introduce our new government into the circle of civilized states and powerful nations. Not arrogant or assuming, with no unbecoming or supercilious bearing, he yet exacted for it from all others entire and punctilious respect. He demanded, and he obtained at once, a standing of perfect equality for his country in the society of nations; nor was there a prince or potentate of his day, whose personal character carried with it, into the intercourse of other states, a greater degree of respect and veneration. He regarded other nations only as they stood in political relations to us. With their internal affairs, their political parties and dissensions, he scrupulously abstained from all interference; and, on the other hand, he repelled with spirit all such interference by others with us or our concerns. His sternest rebuke, the most indignant measure of his whole administration, was aimed against such an attempted interference. He felt it as an attempt to wound the national honor, and resented it accordingly. The reiterated admonitions in his Farewell Address show his deep fears that foreign influence would insinuate itself into our counsels through the channels of domestic dissension, and obtain a sympathy with our own temporary parties. Against all such dangers, he most earnestly entreats the country to guard itself. He appeals to its patriotism, to its self-respect, to its own honor, to every consideration connected with its welfare and happiness, to resist, at the very beginning, all tendencies towards such connection of foreign interests with our own affairs. With a tone of earnestness nowhere else found, even in his last affectionate farewell advice to his countrymen, he says, “Against the insidious wiles of foreign influence, (I conjure you to believe me, fellow- citizens,) the jealousy of a free people ought to be constantly awake; since history and experience prove, that foreign influence is one of the most baneful foes of republican government.” Lastly, on the subject of foreign relations, Washington never forgot that we had interests peculiar to ourselves. The primary political concerns of Europe, he saw, did not affect us. We had nothing to do with her balance of power, her family compacts, or her successions to thrones. We were placed in

a condition favorable to neutrality during European wars, and to the enjoyment of all the great advantages of that relation. “Why, then,” he asks us, “why forego the advantages of so peculiar a situation? Why quit our own to stand upon foreign ground? Why, by interweaving our destiny with that of any part of Europe, entangle our peace and prosperity in the toils of European ambition, rivalship, interest, humor, or caprice?” Indeed, Gentlemen, Washington’s Farewell Address is full of truths important at all times, and particularly deserving consideration at the present. With a sagacity which brought the future before him, and made it like the present, he saw and pointed out the dangers that even at this moment most imminently threaten us. I hardly know how a greater service of that kind could now be done to the community, than by a renewed and wide diffusion of that admirable paper, and an earnest invitation to every man in the country to reperuse and consider it. Its political maxims are invaluable; its exhortations to love of country and to brotherly affection among citizens, touching; and the solemnity with which it urges the observance of moral duties, and impresses the power of religious obligation, gives to it the highest character of truly disinterested, sincere, parental advice. The domestic policy of Washington found its pole-star in the avowed objects of the Constitution itself. He sought so to administer that Constitution, as to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty. These were objects interesting, in the highest degree, to the whole country, and his policy embraced the whole country. Among his earliest and most important duties was the organization of the government itself, the choice of his confidential advisers, and the various appointments to office. This duty, so important and delicate, when a whole government was to be organized, and all its offices for the first time filled, was yet not difficult to him; for he had no sinister ends to accomplish, no clamorous partisans to gratify, no pledges to redeem, no object to be regarded but simply the public good. It was a plain, straightforward matter, a mere honest choice of men for the public service. His own singleness of purpose, his disinterested patriotism, were evinced by the selection of his first Cabinet, and by the manner in which he filled the seats of justice, and other places of high trust. He sought for men fit for offices; not for offices which might suit men. Above personal considerations, above local considerations, above party considerations, he felt that he could only discharge the sacred trust which the country had placed in his hands, by a diligent inquiry after real merit, and a conscientious preference of virtue and talent. The whole country was the field of his selection. He explored that whole field, looking only for whatever it contained most worthy and distinguished. He was, indeed, most successful, and he deserved success for the purity of his motives, the liberality of his sentiments, and his enlarged and manly policy. Washington’s administration established the national continued on page 11

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Make this Valentine’s Day extra special for your family and give them the gift of friendship with a Fresh Air child! Each summer, over 4,000 inner-city children visit suburban, rural and small town communities across 13 states from Virginia to Maine and Canada through The Fresh Air Fund’s Volunteer Host Family Program. This summer, join volunteer host families in the Ithaca, NY area who open their hearts and homes to New York City children.  “We love sharing the wonders of lightening bugs, playing in the backyard, and swimming with our Fresh Air friend!” says Liz, a Fresh Air host. Fresh Air children are boys and girls, from six to 18 years old, who live in New York City. Children on first-time visits are six to 12 years old and stay for one or two weeks. Children who are reinvited by host families may continue with The Fresh Air Fund through age 18 and can enjoy extended trips. Families find hosting so rewarding that more than 65 percent of all Fresh Air children are invited to visit the same host families year after year. Through the eyes of Fresh Air children, families often rediscover the beauty of their own communities. The Fresh Air Fund, an independent, not-for-profit agency, has provided free summer experiences to more than 1.8 million New York City children from low-income communities since 1877. For more information on hosting a Fresh Air child this summer, please contact Lorie Skurka at 607-539-6931 or visit The Fresh Air Fund online at www. freshair.org.

TOMPKINS WORKFORCE Metrix and Prove It! E-Learning: Wednesday, Febru-

ary 26th, 3:00-4:00 Metrix E-Learning is an online skill and job-related training program that contains over 6,000 courses. Courses range in topics from accounting, leadership, healthcare and computer programming, etc. Once registered, customers have accounts with unlimited access for 90 days. Please Note: This workshop requires a mid-level competency with computers. If you want to learn basic computer skills, please speak to the counselor on the Resource Desk. Cornell University - Meet the Employer Session: Friday, February 7th, 1:00-3:30 A Cornell Human Resources representative will discuss job search tips, application process and overall information about working at Cornell University.  Conquering the Interview! Workshop: Wednesday, February

12th, 2:00-4:00 Preparing for your job interview can be a challenge. This course will help you overcome this challenge by teaching you how to: research and prepare prior to an interview; what to expect during an interview, how to follow up after an interview; and avoiding common problems. P.O.D. Professional Opportunity Developers: Thursdays, February 13th, & 27th, 9:00-11:00  Network with people who previously held executive level or highly technical positions. Meet the Employer Session with Stafkings: Thursday, February 20th, 9:00-10:00. Stafkings Personnel Systems is an employment agency that provides applicants with employment opportunities with local employers.  The applicant never pays a fee for this service.  Job seekers typically find opportunities in the following industries:  Accounting, Administrative, Banking, Hospitality, Manufacturing and Technical. Social Security Workshop, Monday, February 24th, 10:30-12:30 Workshop to be held at Borg Warner Rm.Tompkins County Library: Learn about work incentives related to SSI, SSDI and medical insurance (Medicare and Medicaid). Get an overview of the Ticket to Work Program that provides intensive support. Learn how to navigate different disability resources within the community, Civil Service Workshop, Wednesday, February 26th, 10:00-11:00  Learn how to look up exam and vacancy information for various forms of government. Will look at the application process and provide an understanding of navigating the process. Meet the Employer Session with Ithaca College: Wednesday February 26th, 10:00-11:30. Come meet an Ithaca College Human Resource Representative, who will share their application process and the benefits of working at Ithaca College. Job Search Tips for Older Workers: Friday, February 28th, 10:00-12:00 Is age discrimination real? Have you ever been called “over qualified”? Are older adults being stereotyped? Discuss these topics and more in a forum for job seekers who are considered “older”. Topics will include myths about the older worker, changes in job search methods, realities of the current job market, and ways to deal with them. All workshops are offered at no cost to you and will be held at the Tompkins Workforce NY Career Center unless otherwise indicated. We are located in the Center Ithaca Building, Room 241. Registration is required.  Please call  (607) 272-7570 ext. 118 or 135.

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CHARACTER Continued from page 9 credit, made provision for the public debt, and for that patriotic army whose interests and welfare were always so dear to him; and, by laws wisely framed, and of admirable effect, raised the commerce and navigation of the country, almost at once, from depression and ruin to a state of prosperity. Nor were his eyes open to these interests alone. He viewed with equal concern its agriculture and manufactures, and, so far as they came within the regular exercise of the powers of this government, they experienced regard and favor. It should not be omitted, even in this slight reference to the general measures and general principles of the first President, that he saw and felt the full value and importance
 of the judicial department of the government. An upright and able administration of the
laws he held to be alike indispensable to private happiness and public liberty. The temple
 of justice, in his opinion, was a sacred place, and he would profane and pollute it who
should call any to minister in it, not spotless in character, not incorruptible in integrity,
not competent by talent and learning, not a fit object of unhesitating trust. Among other admonitions, Washington has left us, in his last communication to his country, an exhortation against the excesses of party spirit. A fire not to be quenched, he yet conjures us not to fan and feed the flame. Undoubtedly, Gentlemen, it is the greatest danger of our system and of our time. Undoubtedly, if that system should be overthrown, it will be the work of excessive party spirit, acting on the government, which is dangerous enough, or acting in the government, which is a thousand times more dangerous; for government then becomes nothing but organized party, and, in the strange vicissitudes of human affairs, it may come at last, perhaps, to exhibit the singular paradox of government itself being in opposition to its own powers, at war with the very elements of its own existence. Such cases are hopeless. As men may be protected against murder, but cannot be guarded against suicide, so government may be shielded from the assaults of external foes, but nothing can save it when it chooses to lay violent hands on itself. Finally, Gentlemen, there was in the breast of Washington one sentiment so deeply felt, so constantly uppermost, that no proper occasion escaped without its utterance. From the letter which he signed in behalf of the Convention when the Constitution was sent out to the people, to the moment when he put his hand to that last paper in which he addressed his countrymen, the Union, the Union was the great object of his thoughts. In that first letter he tells them that, to him and his brethren of the Convention, union appears to be the greatest interest of every true American; and in that last paper he conjures them to regard that unity of government

which constitutes them one people as the very palladium of their prosperity and safety, and the security of liberty itself. He regarded the union of these States less as one of our blessings, than as the great treasure- house which contained them all. Here, in his judgment, was the great magazine of all our means of prosperity; here, as he thought, and as every true American still thinks, are deposited all our animating prospects, all our solid hopes for future greatness. He has taught us to maintain this union, not by seeking to enlarge the powers of the government, on the one hand, nor by surrendering them, on the other; but by an administration of them at once firm and moderate, pursuing objects truly national, and carried on in a spirit of justice and equity. The extreme solicitude for the preservation of the Union, at all times manifested by him, shows not only the opinion he entertained of its importance, but his clear perception of those causes which were likely to spring up to endanger it, and which, if once they should overthrow the present system, would leave little hope of any future beneficial reunion. Of all the presumptions indulged by presumptuous man, that is one of the rashest which looks for repeated and favorable opportunities for the deliberate establishment of a united government over distinct and widely extended communities. Such a thing has happened once in human affairs, and but once; the event stands out as a prominent exception to all ordinary history; and unless we suppose ourselves running into an age of miracles, we may not expect its repetition. Other misfortunes may be borne, or their effects overcome. If disastrous war should sweep our commerce from the ocean, another generation may renew it; if it exhaust our treasury, future industry may replenish it; if it desolate and lay waste our fields, still, under a new cultivation, they will grow green again, and ripen to future harvests. It were but a trifle even if the walls of yonder Capitol were to crumble, if its lofty pillars should fall, and its gorgeous decorations be all covered by the dust of the valley. All these might be rebuilt. But who shall reconstruct the fabric of demolished government? Who shall rear again the well-proportioned columns of constitutional liberty? Who shall frame together the skilful architecture which unites national sovereignty with State rights, individual security, and public prosperity? No, if these columns fall, they will be raised not again. Like the Coliseum and the Parthenon, they will be destined to a mournful, a melancholy immortality. Bitterer tears, however, will flow over them, than were ever shed over the monuments of Roman or Grecian art; for they will be the remnants of a more glorious edifice than Greece or Rome ever saw, the edifice of constitutional American liberty. But let us hope for better things. Let us trust in that gracious Being who has hitherto held our country as in the hollow of his hand. Let us trust to the virtue and the intelligence of the people, and to the efficacy of religious obligation. Let

us trust to the influence of Washington’s example. Let us hope that that fear of Heaven which expels all other fear, and that regard to duty which transcends all other regard, may influence public
men and private citizens, and lead our country still onward in her happy career. Full of
these gratifying anticipations and hopes, let us look forward to the end of that century
which is now commenced. A hundred years hence, other disciples of Washington will
celebrate his birth, with no less of sincere admiration than we now commemorate it. When they shall meet, as we now meet, to do themselves and him that honor, so surely as they shall see the blue summits of his native mountains rise in the horizon, so surely as they shall behold the river on whose banks he lived, and on whose banks he rests, still flowing on toward the sea, so surely may they see, as we now see, the flag of the Union floating on the top of the Capitol; and then, as now, may the sun in his course visit no land more free, more happy, more lovely, than this our own country! Gentlemen, I propose—“THE MEMORY OF GEORGE WASHINGTON.” n Found in “What So Proudly We Hailed” by Leon and Amy Kass. http:// www.whatsoproudlywehail.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/Webster_ The-Character-of-Washington.pdf

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SECURITY Continued from page 3 nor extremist, and who recognize al Qaeda to be a mortal threat just as much if not more than we do. In Tunisia, for instance, we see an Islamist party that has proven thus far to be respectful of democracy and of political pluralism. In fact, such Islamists--operating in a democratic framework--may ultimately prove to be the most powerful and effective force to delegitimize and destroy violent Is-

Page 12

lamist extremism. Conversely, repressive regimes in Muslim countries are likely in the long run to radicalize people and push them towards violent extremism. For this reason, the U.S. does have a core national interest in the political development of the Muslim world towards greater freedom. The progress we have made since 9/11 in securing our homeland is real. But we should not delude ourselves into thinking that this fight is anywhere near over. Perhaps the best description of where we find ourselves can be found in the familiar words of a great statesman of the last century, speaking of a very different struggle against another totalitarian foe. In late 1942, after the first British victories in North

Africa, Winston Churchill told the House of Commons: “Now this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning.” So, too, perhaps it is for us now “the end of the beginning” of our war against violent Islamist extremism. If so, that should give us reason to hope—but also grounds to recognize much danger, difficulty, and hard work lies ahead. n Congressional testimony: http://www.aei.org/speech/foreign-anddefense-policy/terrorism/al-qaeda/a-false-narrative-endangers-thehomeland/

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