Springtime in the Smokies
Showing posts with label Paul G. Kengor. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Paul G. Kengor. Show all posts

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Black Pastors Protest Margaret Sanger at Smithsonian


By Dr. Paul G. Kengor

Margaret Sanger is a saint in the feminist church. She is a charter member of the progressive hall of fame. Liberals revere this woman who preached “race improvement” and denounced what she called “human weeds,” “morons,” “idiots,” “imbeciles,” and the “dead weight of human waste.”

Hillary Clinton glows that she is “in awe of” Sanger. She said so in 2009 upon receiving Planned Parenthood’s “highest honor” that year: its coveted Margaret Sanger Award. Likewise effusive was Nancy Pelosi when she proudly accepted the award in 2014.

Friday, November 7, 2014

The Mid-Term Election: Is Obama Still Relevant?

From The Center for Vision & Values, Grove City College
By Paul G. Kengor

Editor’s note: A version of this article first appeared at Fox News.

“Today I had a chance to speak with John Boehner and congratulated Mitch McConnell on becoming the next Senate majority leader,” said Barack Obama in the opening of his White House press conference following the Democrats’ Tuesday massacre. “And I told them both that I look forward to finishing up this Congress’s business and then working together for the next two years to advance America’s business.” The president is looking forward to “working together to deliver for the American people.”

Obama struck an optimistic, cooperative tone. Of course, he better. If he wants to have any relevance going forward, what choice does he have but to play nice with Republicans, or at least talk nice?

This begs the trillion-dollar question: Is Obama still relevant? Given the truly historic proportion of this Republican victory, is Barack Obama about to become the lamest of lame-ducks?

Monday, October 27, 2014

A President Who Doesn’t Seek Advice?


From The Center for Vision & Values, Grove City College
By Paul G. Kengor

The Government Accountability Institute reports that President Obama continues to skip the majority of his Presidential Daily Briefings. This is a stunning fact, first reported two years ago and now updated and reconfirmed. Worse, it was also just reported that Obama likewise doesn’t consult his White House predecessor. Altogether, this paints a very troubling picture.

To recap: In September 2012, the Government Accountability Institute released a study which revealed that our president failed to attend a single Presidential Daily Brief (PDB) in the week leading up to the anniversary of 9/11, despite major eruptions in the Arab world, and despite the obvious fact that we were approaching another 9/11 anniversary (i.e., the highest level of security alert). And yet, President Obama didn’t attend a single briefing that week. In fact, Obama attended only 43.8 percent of his Daily Briefs in the first 1,225 days of his administration. For the year 2012, he attended a little over a third.

Monday, July 7, 2014

God and Dick Scaife

By Paul G. Kengor

Editor’s note: This article first appeared in The American Spectator.

I was saddened to wake up the morning of July 4 and learn that Richard Mellon Scaife, Pittsburgh billionaire, conservative philanthropist extraordinaire, and spearhead of Hillary Clinton’s ominous “vast right-wing conspiracy,” died at age 82. How appropriate that this patriot bid goodbye on July 4. It’s fitting, too, that his death comes within a year of the deaths of his two principal lieutenants at his foundation, Dan McMichael and Dick Larry. Together, these three men established numerous conservative programs, institutions, and even individuals. They made a huge impact.

I got to know Dick Scaife pretty well. About three or four years ago, he read my book Dupes. It’s a lengthy account of how the communist movement has long hoodwinked and exploited American leftists—many of whom Dick Scaife had battled and loathed. Scaife loved it. It was the last full book that he read. I learned that he was recommending the book to his friends. Soon enough, I learned he wanted to meet with me.

Friday, May 16, 2014

“Heaven is for Real” and the Gospel of Life

By Paul G. Kengor

Editor’s note: A version of this article first appeared at thecatholicthing.org.

I recently bought the book “Heaven is for Real” and saw the movie. That was unusual for me. I don’t typically do the books and movies everyone else is doing, especially the touchy-feely spiritual ones. Maybe it’s the snob in me, or, really, I just don’t like to do what the culture is doing. But this time, I made an exception.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Ronald Reagan’s City of God

Editor’s note: The following is an excerpt from Paul Kengor’s new book 11 Principles of a Reagan Conservative. Among the principles is faith. A version of this article first appeared at RealClearReligion.org.

Conservatives constantly talk of freedom.

Freedom. Freedom. Freedom. Go to any gathering of conservatives, and you will hear a freedom mantra. They speak of “freedom” almost as if it were a one-word synonym for conservatism, a slogan for the movement. At times, they do so in an almost trite way.

Ronald Reagan likewise spoke constantly of freedom. Mankind, from “the swamps to the stars,” as he said in his seminal October 1964 “Time for Choosing” speech, longed to be free. The global Cold War struggle of Reagan’s life represented the arc of that longing, of that crisis. Obviously, the communist world hungered for freedom. But even the free world didn’t always appreciate it. Free people needed always to be reminded of their freedom and the need to understand and reassert it. That included Americans. Reagan said that freedom is always under assault; every generation must fight to preserve it.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Dr. Paul Kengor: Shirley Temple's America



I learned only yesterday that Shirley Temple, the iconic child actress, died earlier this week at age 85. Reports on her death were easy to miss. I went through my usual scan of various websites and saw nothing. I fortunately caught a buried “Shirley Temple, R.I.P.” by a writer at a political website.

I was dismayed by the sparse reaction to the loss of this woman who lived a great American life. Had Shirley Temple died 50 years ago, or even 30 years ago, the country would have stopped. People everywhere would have paused to give Temple her due. It would have been the lead in every newspaper.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Pete Seeger, Marxist Minstrel

From The Center for Vision & Values, Grove City College
By Paul G. Kengor

Editor’s note: A shorter version of this article first appeared in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.

Pete Seeger’s death at age 94 is a cultural catharsis for the American left. The New York Times accorded his passing the kind of space normally reserved for the death of a president. Such was Seeger’s special place of reverence among liberals.

The media is hailing Seeger as a “social-justice” crusading “progressive,” a voice for the poor, the downtrodden, the working man, and the environment. He’s also being portrayed as a victim of wild-eyed McCarthyites who maniacally searched for a red under every bed.

Well, the full story is a little different.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

The Progressive Income Tax Turns 100

By Paul G. Kengor

Editor’s note: This article first appeared at Investor’s Business Daily.

Maybe it’s a measure of progressives’ refusal to look back, to always move “forward.” Otherwise, they should be celebrating right now. In fact, President Obama and fellow modern progressives/liberals should have been ecstatic all this year, rejoicing over the centenary of something so fundamental to their ideology, to their core goals of government, to their sense of economic and social justice—to what Obama once called “redistributive change.”

And what is this celebratory thing to the progressive mind?

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Well Done, Lady Thatcher … The Passing of the Iron Lady

By Paul G. Kengor

Margaret Thatcher, one of the greatest leaders of the Cold War, of the 20th century, and of British history, has died at the age of 87.

I’ve referred to her as one of my Cold War seven: Ronald Reagan, John Paul II, Mikhail Gorbachev, Lech Walesa, Vaclav Havel, Boris Yeltsin, and Margaret Thatcher. They were the seven figures who dissolved an Evil Empire, and only Walesa and Gorbachev still remain with us.

The world dubbed her the Iron Lady, a title that duly fits. Many, however, mistake the Iron Lady moniker as referring solely to her strength in the Cold War. There was much more to it. Consider:

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

The End of the Reagan Era?

From The Center for Vision & Values, Grove City College
By Dr. Paul G. Kengor

Editor’s note: A longer version of this article first appeared at American Spectator.

With Barack Obama’s second inauguration, liberals are touting an altogether new epoch: the end of the Reagan era.

Unfortunately, I believe they are largely correct. We are witnessing a period of left-wing ascendance, marked by gay marriage, forced taxpayer funding of abortion, an exploding government class, and big government. As to the latter, Ronald Reagan had declared in his first inaugural: “government is not the solution … government is the problem.” The first Democrat to follow Reagan, Bill Clinton, similarly stated “the era of big government is over.” Clinton’s affirmation was also affirmation of the Reagan era.

Then came Barack Obama. Just days after his 2009 inauguration, Obama proclaimed: “the federal government is the only entity left with the resources to jolt our economy back into life.” He said “only government” could alter our “vicious cycle.”

Obama had repudiated Reagan, and the electorate would again reward him four years later. What Obama called for in 2009 seems to be the new American spirit in 2013.

But is it? Well, the answer is complicated.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Santorum or Romney? Culture War or Class War?


By Paul G. Kengor

The question for Republicans right now seems obvious: Would you prefer Rick Santorum or Mitt Romney to run against Barack Obama?

Well, it depends on whether you prefer to engage President Obama on cultural grounds or on terms of class warfare. Obama and his chief political strategist, David Axelrod, are going to give us one or the other. Thus, maybe the better question is: Can Santorum articulate and defend social conservatism better than Romney can defend free markets? Which of the two is a more forceful, eloquent spokesperson for the area that Obama and Axelrod will use to define and malign him?

Not only has President Obama been employing class rhetoric unceasingly for three years now, but David Axelrod has been planning precisely such an assault against Mitt Romney. “Obama officials intend to frame Romney as the very picture of greed in the great recession—a sort of political Gordon Gekko,” reported an August 2011 Politico piece titled, “Obama plan: Destroy Romney.” The piece quoted Axelrod: “He [Romney] was very, very good at making a profit for himself and his partners but not nearly as good [at] saving jobs for communities. He is very much the profile of what we’ve seen in the last decade on Wall Street.”

This was the plan even before the Occupy Wall Street movement exploded. Axelrod and Obama view Mitt Romney as red meat for the Occupy movement, the poster-boy for Wall Street greed.

“[Romney] says he represents business,” Axelrod told MSNBC in October, “but he really represents the Wall Street side of business.”

Axelrod told George Stephanopoulos that Romney is “not a job creator” but a “corporate raider” who outsourced “tens of thousands of jobs,” “closed down more than 1,000 plants, stores, and offices,” and joined “his partners” in making “hundreds of millions of dollars” at the expense of the poor. Axelrod calls this the “Bain mentality.”

This caustic, class-warfare rhetoric is just a taste of what will come if Romney gets the GOP nomination. The class envy will get far worse. And no one will do it better than a smiling Obama.

Perhaps the only thing that might energize the president and his team more is a battle with the Catholic Church over his HHS mandate on “contraception.” And that’s where Rick Santorum comes in.

I’m increasingly convinced that President Obama wants this fight with the Catholic Church. I think this is a fight not only close to Obama’s ideological heart, but one he perversely feels can help him politically. If he can frame this debate as not about taxpayer support of abortion drugs, or about religious liberty, or freedom of conscience, or the First Amendment and Constitution—all of which it is—but about “women’s rights” vs. the stodgy old men who run the Catholic Church, he will make headway with certain voters. Don’t underestimate Obama’s ability to do just that.

If Rick Santorum becomes the 2012 GOP nominee, he’ll be an automatic spokesman for the Catholic Church’s position. He’s a living, breathing testimony to the Church’s teaching, from his own personal life to his well-informed intellect on Church teachings. Rick Santorum is the rarest candidate who has actually read Church encyclicals like Humanae Vitae and Evangelium Vitae.

That’s just fine for President Obama and David Axelrod. They’ll take that guy any day. Hey, buddy, you want a culture war based on Catholic Church teachings? You got it!

Never mind, of course, that President Obama started this fight with his heavy-handed decree to the Catholic Church. The president’s protective media will behave as if Rick Santorum is the intrusive one, rudely and righteously thrusting his faith into the “public square.” The media will not portray Santorum as simply reacting to Obama’s totally unnecessary decree and intrusion—which is what really happened—but as a sexist Neanderthal who just can’t pull his nose out of your bedroom.

So, that brings us back to my original question for Republicans: Which of the two—Romney or Santorum—is a more forceful, eloquent spokesperson for the issues that Obama and Axelrod will use to define and malign him? I think the answer is Santorum, which is less a vote for Santorum than a vote of no confidence in Romney’s persuasive abilities. Or does that bring us back to Newt, assuming Newt remains politically viable?

One thing is certain: Neither of these Obama-Axelrod tactics will unify Americans; it will divide them, pitting them against each other by class or religion, by income or faith, by money or conscience. And that isn’t a good thing, especially from a president who promised to be a unifier and symbol of “hope.”


Dr. Paul Kengor is professor of political science at Grove City College, executive director of The Center for Vision & Values, and author of the newly released Dupes: How America’s Adversaries Have Manipulated Progressives for a Century. His other books include The Crusader: Ronald Reagan and the Fall of Communism and God and Ronald Reagan.