We are suffering from a serious intelligence deficit in this nation and it is quite literally killing our country.
On some of the biggest, most important arguments we are having socially, economically, and morally, the people who are on the correct side of the argument are making horrendously stupid arguments to support their position, thus limiting the likeliness that we will end up on the right side of both the issue and history. As follows:
MASS SHOOTINGS/GUN CONTROL: As an advocate of the 2nd Amendment and a gun owner, I immediately blanch at any suggestion that my God Given right to bear arms be infringed upon for any reason. The truth is that, (as hard as it is to hear), crap happens and evil lives. Limiting, in any way, the rights of law abiding citizens is never the answer, whether it be hate speech laws or gun control, period. That should be the argument and the answer; one in which we force America to acknowledge both its’ truth and its’ founding. The truth is that we have tons of laws in place and murder, rape, and robbery still occur. Laws do not deter people, they draw moral lines for the nation and they punish those who cross those lines. When a mass shooter pops up you don’t stop him by waving a law in his face, you stop him when someone else with a gun arrives. Our founding, meanwhile, guaranteed us the right to bear arms, period, without restriction, limitation, or qualification. Those who argue the sentence of the amendment regarding “militias,” as a way to justify their belief that the only reason that the founders armed its citizenry was to, using the now antiquated technology of the time, provide a safety net for the public to fight back against a corrupt government miss the point and the spirit of the 2nd Amendment. Sadly, those who support the 2nd amendment are only making things worse by screaming “mental health, mental health.” Be careful what you wish for, my fellow gun lovers. The gun control crowd will leap to your side quickly and use your own words against you as they create law after law and provision after provision that empowers everyone from doctors to teachers to pharmacists to become mandated reporters who will let the government know when a “questionable” person owns a gun that should, for pre-emptive safety reasons, be confiscated. Don’t come crying to me when the sheriff shows up at your door with a warrant because you’re taking Prozac, or because you have PTSD. If you’re arguing “mental health, mental health,” you are creating the very problem that will lead to the very outcome you’re dreading, all because you don’t have the courage to say the truth; life sucks, crap happens, guns help me take care of the crap that happens in life.
MINIMUM WAGE: For starters, the very presence of a minimum wage as mandated by any of our governments (federal, state or local) is a form of Socialism and should be eschewed. But it is here to stay so let’s move along. Beyond the theoretical is the practical reality that the free market should determine a person’s worth based on that person’s skill set, in conjunction with supply and demand for said skills, period. The reason our military make such little money is that we live in the greatest nation on Earth with no shortage of people willing to step forward and serve their country voluntarily. Is it “right,” that a morning talk show host makes 10 times what an infantrymen fighting for our freedoms does? Of course not, but we have a shortage of people talented enough to attract large audiences to the radio and advertise other peoples’ businesses, while we have no shortage of the brave. Supply and Demand is not always just, but it exists. That should be the argument. Stay out of the free market, period. At the very least, if you acknowledge, correctly, that the minimum wage, along with many other forms of American Socialism are here to stay, then argue for a slowly phased in increase over many years. STOP saying that by raising the minimum wage people will pay $10 for a Big Mac because that is not true at all. It is 100% provably true that raising the minimum wage in America does NOT hurt the economy. In theory, people argue, raising costs of doing business gets passed on to consumers, but that’s why theory is not reality. There are two realities when companies see their costs increase; they either pass on the pain to the consumer OR to their workforce, and it is the latter that always suffers when the minimum wage is increased. As we’ve seen recently in countless examples, companies who have voluntarily raised their minimum wage have then gone on to eliminate thousands of jobs to make up the costs. In other words, since the economy is not actually measured by the workforce, raising the minimum wage doesn’t hurt the economy because companies don’t raise their prices. They do, however, eliminate the very people a minimum wage increase is supposed to help; their lowest end working folks. Period. Argue the god damned facts, people. Minimum wage increases hurt the very people they’re designed to help because many of them lose their jobs, not because Starbucks coffee suddenly costs $22. Throughout American history, every single increase in the minimum wage has caused a greater amount of people to lose their jobs, while those working earn more. The latter of those statistics is how labor folks sell the idea, they just leave out the collateral damage portion of the argument in which a lot of people become unemployed. Those against minimum wage increases (or for them slowly phased in) need to find the courage to argue the facts.
KEYSTONE PIPEPLINE: For almost a decade now we have been debating whether or not to build a pipeline from Canada to Texas so that we could easily move and import enormous amounts of crude from our neighbors to the north. If we don’t build it, Canada will still produce the oil and sell it to China and others. Whatever alleged effect there will be on the environment will occur regardless of whether we run it through America or Canada sails it to China. Grow up, people. Google “George Carlin on the planet,” and listen intently to how he describes modern day environmentalists. They don’t give a damn about the Earth they care about a clean place to live…their own habitat. They are narrow minded, unenlightened bourgeois phonies, period. Unfortunately, the argument countless idiots have been making in favor of the pipeline is that it will create jobs, an attractive sentiment in today’s America where fewer and fewer people work. Unfortunately, it’s misleading if not fundamentally false. Yes, for a while, people will be needed to build the pipeline; since, however, it’s government work, the people who will actually build the pipeline already have jobs in a union already approved by the government, and they’ll just be shipped to the Midwest for a few months to complete the task. Then they’ll leave and still have jobs. No jobs created. Once the pipeline is built, it’s almost self-sustaining. Most estimates say it creates a total of less than 40 permanent jobs so those in favor of the pipeline need to STOP ARGUING IT WILL CREATE JOBS and just be honest. Argue for the pipeline because you believe that America must be energy independent and/or that you believe in an “all of the above,” energy policy in which America continues to embrace crude oil unless and until an actual alternative arrives, which, despite claims to the contrary, is nowhere on the horizon.
Lying to win arguments always comes back to bite the liar. Convincing people via the truth means they come to your side of their own volition and will support you throughout. While not all of these examples I have given you involve lies, they are either woefully dishonest or miss the mark by devastating margins.
If, for example, you convince people to follow you to the promised land because you’re going to get the nation to stop focusing on gun control and instead focus on mental health, how will you defend yourself when millions of gun owners have their weapons confiscated as a result of a mental health provision under the guise of “public safety?” A response of “that’s not what I meant,” won’t cut it. When yet another minimum wage hike is enacted and a year later consumer prices have remain stagnant or followed an acceptable year-to-year path (as opposed to your fearmongering $10 Big Mac argument), how will you then stave off another increase immediately? Your fundamental premise will have been proven wrong and you will lose yet again.
I gather it’s not news that we have a lack of courage in modern day America; it should, however be disheartening that we have seemingly almost no courage at all anymore, even in the arena of public debate and ideas. The crippling fear meant to be created by a combination of political correctness and a society filled with defining themselves by what others think of them has taken the stranglehold it was designed to and we’re all going to suffer for it.