academia

The Moral Superiority Of Capitalism: Daniel Hannan Debunks The "Occupy" Movement

Hearing about Margaret Thatcher's passing this morning got me thinking about this era's great British leader, Daniel Hannan, who is a Conservative Party Member to the European Parliament. I haven't heard much from him lately. You may remember how he burst on the international scene almost exactly four years ago with this dramatic and exquisite dressing down of then British Prime Minister Gordon Brown over his socialist policies that nearly bankrupted the UK. The video went viral and inspired conservatives the world over. Hannan became an instant hero and frequent guest on American media outlets and had a successful book tour here. As it turns out, MEP Hannan is as active as ever, and last January took on American socialist Cornell West at the Oxford Union in a debate about capitalism and the so-called "occupy" movement (see Anne Sorock at legalinsurrection.com.). Actually, it's difficult to call something a movement that can't even find where it's going; Apparently, the protesters in London got lost on the way to the London Stock Exchange. Hannan was his usual, refreshing self: humorous, direct, minced no words while using apt and timeless parables, and spoke with a passionate combination of commonsense and detail. In short, he outlines the moral superiority of capitalism while debunking the prevailing notions in the media, pop culture and academia that somehow socialism is "fair."

Much like the Florida legislators who couldn't believe they had to ask a Planned Parenthood lobbyist such a rudimentary moral question concerning saving a life, Hannan finds it absurd that capitalism's ability to provide the greatest measure of prosperity to the greatest number of people is in dispute, as well as the incredulous notion that the bank bailouts the "occupy" movement protested were capitalist measures! In fact, the left, in its critique of the bailouts, was criticizing its own practice of state intervention — but, as is its tactic, ascribed the failed policy to its free market opponents for political gain.

Daniel Hannan: The thinker and orator of our times, eloquently debunking the so-called "occupy" movement.

The one aspect of free market capitalism that inexplicably escapes its advocacy by conservatives is its moral superiority to any other economic system. This is perhaps the single most important facet in educating people about capitalism. It's inherent freedom, instinctive provisions for every need, and ability to foster the innovation that enriches not only the inventor, but the user as well, is unparalleled. Daniel Hannan may be one of the few prominent voices currently extolling these virtues internationally (and we need many more). But its is one strong, powerful and effective voice at that . . . unparalleled in its own way.

A King-Sized Interview In The Big Apple

I am very excited to be in New York City to participate in The King's College Distinguished Visitor Series. I will be interviewed today by The King's College provost and World Magazine editor-in-chief Marvin Olasky in front of a crowd of the college's students. The King's College is a liberal arts school located in the Empire State Building. This year's Distinguished Visitor Series includes the likes of George Gilder, Dick Armey, Chuck Colson and and many other familiar names from academia, business, journalism, public policy, economics and culture. Past participants include U.S. Senator Jim DeMint, Grover Norquist, John Stossel and Ken Blackwell. Click here to see the complete list of this year's distinguished speakers and click here to see the list from the last three years of speakers up to August 30, and download the podcasts of those who interest you most. It's a terrific roster of intelligent and thought-provoking men and women. We will post the podcast of my interview here when it becomes available on The King's College Web site. Video will be available at the college's YouTube channel.

This year, the series added another element to its speakers' profile. According to Mr. Olasky:

The Distinguished Visitors Series allows students to learn from and interact with some of our nation’s top leaders. And this year we're complementing our established invitees with some younger Americans who will talk about ideas but also about discerning callings and starting careers (see Style Weekly).

I am honored to be a part of this series. I know it is possible only because of the good work by thousands of Virginians who share the common cause of defending our traditional values in the culture at large, and who work hard every day to bring reason and truth in the public square.

What An Honor!

In May, we noticed that none other than Right Wing Watch, the blog of the well known national liberal organization People For The American Way, had commented about us. In fact, it was concerned about the launch of our "Winning Matters" program, which engages pastors to lead their congregations into full participation into the public square. We noted at the time that we must be doing something right if such a large, national organization and RWW were keeping their eyes on us, a lil' ol' state policy organization. So, imagine how we feel now that they've mentioned us again (see here), this time ridiculing Bishop Harry Jackson, Jr., for speaking at some of our pastors events around the commonwealth. Wearing this online red badge of courage, we thought we'd report on something they really could chew on.

People For The American Way and other liberal, secular progressives believe, given recent election trends, that the death of Christianity in America is near — or at least we've been minimized to the point of a curious, but irrelevant, nuisance. It's apparent to the collective liberal institutional genius (media, academia, public education, special interest groups, unions, etc.), that many Americans finally are enlightened, no longer hold the traditional values that are the result of one's faith in God, and that the country has reached the Rubiconof a mother state with no looking back (the flipping of conservative Virginia their prize possession).

Those of us who still dare live in the Stone Age are so few in number that we can be essentially forgotten by society and left to dwell in our caves. Finally the progressives can officially progress . . .  

But maybe not. In Roanoke last week, we hosted a pastors event in connection with the Winning Matters 2009 Campaign. Approximately 40 pastors from around the region filled the room and were encouraged, equipped and empowered to continue influencing their congregations and communities on traditional values issues. (For information on other pastor events around Virginia, click here.)

Mat Staver, founder of Liberty Counsel and Dean of Liberty University's School of Law, reminded them of their personal and congregational rights to speak freely on the issues of the day. Rick Scarborough, of Vision America, challenged them to speak truth to their communities and leaders, as he has done for many years with great success. Family Foundation staff offered practical steps to make their churches more effective voices, including:

» Preaching a citizenship sermon; » Holding a voter registration drive; » Distributing General Assembly Report Cards; and » Distributing voter guides.

Each pastor there decided to stand up and be counted for the cause of Biblical values. They certainly didn't look dead in their passion to make a difference. Besides, even if they were, secular progressives forget that we serve a God who raises the dead. That alone, should give Right Wing Watch plenty to blog about.