Book Review: The Red, White, and Blue Deal, Part II

Restoring the Constitutional Republic

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One of the greatest difficulties of being a conservative is the fact that we are the Party of the “Big Tent.” While liberals have the advantage of a monotheistic approach to the new religion of secularism, conservatives have a diversity of thought that sometimes puts us at odds. That is, however, our strength.

Conservatism is a crucible that helps your forge your own thoughts, online the “get in line or get out” philosophy followed by the left, conservatives are challenged to defend and identify their positions on a number of issues. We are not the party of the “palm card,” we believe that voters should be able to make up their mind about what issues are important to them.

A Book to Counter the Green New Deal

The impetus of this book was a statement by Rep. Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez. She noted that “Since she had an idea, she was the boss.” While the statement itself showed the limitless bounds of her idiocy and incompetence, it became a rallying cry of the ultra-progressive wing of the Democrat Party. Conservatives and moderates needed a reply; I offered the Red, White, and Blue Deal, Part II as a conversation starter about how we could have an idea.

The core concept of the book was not to present “red meat” to fellow conservatives, but to create logical positions on issues that are affecting the country. While a small portion of the book is dedicated to dealing with the misinformation, propaganda, and the troubling principles of the Green New Deal, most of the book is designed to help return us to a constitutional republic.

The Choice of the Issues Addressed

Personally, one of the most concerning issues I see in our country today is legislative apathy. This has manifested itself as a government that does not want to write individual bills, but would rather pass continuing resolutions and omnibus bills. While this makes things easier for the party leadership, it really brings the progress of the republic to a halt, as nothing new gets done because everyone is worried about settling old scores.

When I started to write this book, I kept that in mind. One of my greatest passions in life – or perhaps hope is a better word – is to see a time when new laws are required to be less than five pages. Realistically, if you cannot pass a law in five pages, it is too complicated. Five pages also allows people to read the law… what a novel thought: a populous who knows what the laws are that govern them.

The issues themselves were taken from the headlines while I was writing (as were many of the citations). The Red, White, and Blue Deal, Part II was not a manifesto of the issues that I cared about, rather, it was a response to the crises of the time in which it was written. Ironically, the topics are even more salient today.

Key Chapters

The key issue while I was writing was healthcare, an issue that we still are very interested in today. Addressing this issue, we need to move away from the government being involved heavily in healthcare. Too much government is the problem that we are facing; hospitals and doctors are not able to deal with the issues that they face. Further, lobbyists – not medical professionals – are making the decisions now. Patient care has been replaced by profit. As a nation, we need to keep the politics out of our doctors’ offices (and as coronavirus has shown us we need to keep the doctors out of politics).

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The second main issue of the book is the economy. Granted, we are in approximately the same position now economically (at least by the stock market) that we were at the beginning of the last Congress. The caveat is that we have a much higher unemployment rate due to draconian government interference in the economy. The United States needs a free economy to be successful, plus less regulation, harsher penalties for those who violate those laws, and an America-first policy are key in this area.

With the big two issues out of the way, the rest of the book concentrates on the more focused issues of the nation. Immigration reform has moved to the back burner since the book was written, however, it is still a major issue. The social contract means a nation must take care of its citizens first. During times of crisis, we need to “fix the plank in our own eye” before we look to fix others lives.

Women’s rights are also an issue that looms large in the world today. The fact that an equal rights amendment has not been ratified is an affront to what we stand for as Americans. People of the same level of skills should be paid the same amount for the same amount of time on the same job within a company. The liberal hypocrisy is an embarrassment here as Hollywood pays men millions more than women for leadership roles and the assault is just beginning on Judge (hopefully soon to be Justice) Amy Coney Barrett.

Gun policy is another issue where there should be a limited debate. “The right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed” is a very simple passage from the Constitution. Americans should be allowed to own the same weapons that the government has unless, of course, that right has been removed by due process of the courts because of a crime or a mental condition. This is a cardinal rule of our republic, whether city liberals like it or not.

Foreign policy is another simple issue we have made complex. If a nation hates us, let them rot from within. Aiding nations that are determined to destroy us is silly. While I am all for loving my enemies, I am definitely against arming them. The government of the United States should always put the needs of Americans first. Any foreign investment, aid, or support (other than military) should be from the private sector.

Income distribution is one of the more interesting points in the book. I am a firm believer in a sales tax and use taxes. These allow people to control their own tax liability without being punished for working. I do, however, support a progressive income tax on people who make over $500,000 a year who do not “produce” anything of value (artists, athletes, celebrities). The idea that corporations should be taxed more while people who play games or make movies get a pass is completely bizarre to me.

There is a section of six or so chapters looking at reform of the government. These parts look at restoring the republic by putting restraints on government abuses of power. This includes term limits on the courts, term limits in congress, punishing foreign interference in our elections, ending the war on drugs and the resulting prison and tort reform. These issues are designed to give people back power in their lives.

Large scale reforms are also needed in the voting system, social security, education, and welfare. These issues are better left to the states, but still need to be discussed at the federal level. If we move these issues to the states, rural states could cease subsidizing failing states.

Finally, we need to have a direct discussion on splitting up some of the larger states. California, Texas, New York, Florida, and Illinois have too much power in the electoral college. Pennsylvania and Ohio should also be thrown in there. We need to look at a rule where no state has more than ten times the electoral votes of the smallest state (which is three).

In addition to this last point, we should make Puerto Rico a state. Along with several other territories, these people should have the same rights to vote in elections as we do, along with their representation. Yes, I understand that PR will likely be a Democrat state, but we should not deny people rights based on their political party. Sometimes being the “person with a plan” means putting the rights of others first.

A Battle Book

This book is a “Battle Book” which means that I have included hundreds of footnotes so that you have sources if you find yourself in a debate. It is also very large, where you could hit someone with it if need be (though I do not recommend this). Either way, this book should arm you for the philosophical debate that will be unfolding in the next couple months.

Christopher W Smithmyer
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