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|موضوع: Rick Santorum Seems Poised to Launch a 2016 Presidential Campaign الإثنين 15 ديسمبر 2014, 1:47 pm|| |
| Dec. 12, 2014|
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Rick Santorum Seems Poised to Launch a 2016 Presidential Campaign
- اقتباس :
CHESAPEAKE, VA (Catholic Online): Karen Tumulty wrote a column for the Washington Post on Tuesday, December 9, 2014 entitled Rick Santorum is running for president again - and says this time will be different.
The article is making waves among those reading the political tea leaves to discern who is running for President from among the field of candidates identified with the Republican Party.
Tumulty noted that Rick Santorum is reaching out to "blue-collar voters who are being left behind in the economy."
Some who seek to criticize the former senator from Pennsylvania try to undermine his claims to a blue collar background by pointing to the fact that he went to College and graduated from Law School with honors. They are barking up the wrong tree.
Rick Santorum grew up the son of an Italian immigrant and grandson of coal miner. Those roots run deep - like the veins of coal in the areas of West Virginia and Pennsylvania where he spent his childhood. The values of hard work, family, faith and love of freedom can lead to just such accomplishments later in life.
This is part of what is so precious about the vision which gave birth to the experiment in ordered liberty called the United States of America. Rick Santorum wants to make sure those values endure - and that the circle of opportunity and participation they create is expanded.
I grew up in Dorchester, Massachusetts, in a blue collar home. My late father was a salt of the earth, former Navy sailor. He worked hard, loved his family - and lived hard. I miss him. He never made much money. He never went beyond High School. Neither did my dear mother. I recently turned 60 and visited their place of rest. I remembered these words attributed to Mark Twain:
"When I was a boy of 14, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be 21, I was astonished at how much the old man had learned in seven years."
I would add that the hard working, blue collar values which my mother and father instilled within me age well, like a good red wine. So it is with Rick Santorum.
In her article, Tumulty quotes Santorum saying this about the people he met during his last campaign:
"I don't think I've met a 'suit' yet. It's very much heart of America, average Americans who have found a place where they see someone who will stand up and fight for them. If the Republican Party has a future - and I sometimes question if it does - it's in middle America. It's not in corporate America."
Rick Santorum is right.
I write this article because I am seriously concerned for the future of the Nation I love - a Nation which I want to pass on to our children and grandchildren. I believe we are in a National Crisis and we need a real leader.
I am a reluctant Republican. Growing up, my family felt that the Republican Party had a silver spoon in its mouth and had no concern for people like us. I know, it was a caricature. However, like many caricatures, it had an element of truth behind it.
I left the Party calling itself Democratic when it was taken over by the strange coalition which now holds it captive. That coalition purports to care about the poor but fails to hear the cry of the poorest of the poor, our first neighbors in the womb of their mother.
They feign a solidarity with blue collar workers but foment class warfare and push Statist economic and political policies which are now a grave threat to true liberty.
They pay lip service to marriage and family while actively supporting the redefinition of the word and the demise of the institution. They do not respect the first freedom of religious freedom and treat the Church with contempt and disregard for its proper and important role in promoting the common good.
The continued control of the Republican Party by an old guard establishment only feeds the caricature I was raised to believe was accurate. The establishment of the Republican Party does seem to be aligned with corporatism, cronyism and economism.
They often fail to recognize that the source of all of our liberties, including economic liberty, is found in our shared moral values. Rick Santorum's blue collar identification is essential as we fight the effort to push the 1% strategy of class warfare being spun as "income inequality"
Let me make it clear, I am a supporter of the free market economy. It is certainly preferable to an overly centralized planned economy which stifles creativity and undermines initiative. However, the market was made for man and not man for the market. Freedom is a good of the human person. It is not some ethereal concept floating around somewhere.
A market economy remains free when it recognizes that it is not just about financial capital. The recognition of human capital, creativity, initiative should be joined to expanding opportunity and participation as a part of a 2016 economic agenda. It is not enough to criticize big government and then substitute big business.
Just as governing should be reordered from the ground up, the market economy must again recognize the primacy of the human person. We must encourage entrepreneurship and expand the circle of economic participation.
The 2016 presidential race is now fully upon us. I know that the Republican candidates, including Rick Santorum, will put off any formal announcement until sometime in 2015. However, it is increasingly clear who is running. It is time to consider a plan for rescuing the Nation from a downward spiral, morally, economically and internationally.
We are a Nation in crisis, on every front. The angst in the American public is evident in every poll. Our Nation is threatened from within - and from without. We need a leader with clarity of thought and courage in action. We need a leader who is morally coherent.
We need someone who is not an establishment candidate. The establishment wing of the Republican Party have already begun to sing their old tired tune, insisting we should stay away from what they call social issues. FORGET IT! There is a political dualism in establishment Republican leadership.
They simply do not understand this important point - just as you cannot separate body and soul in a human person, you cannot separate social, economic and international issues in the body politic. There is a moral basis to a free society.
Only a people with shared moral values can expand a free market, protect freedom in the international order and build a truly free culture on the home-front. We have often heard two quotes from the founding fathers of the American Republic - we need to hear them again in this urgent hour.
First, from George Washington, Father of our nation, "Religion and morality are the essential pillars of civil society."
Second, from Benjamin Franklin, "[O]nly a virtuous people are capable of freedom. As nations become corrupt and vicious, they have more need of masters."
We need a U.S. President who recognizes and defends the moral foundations of a free and just society; one who demonstrates moral coherence in his personal life and policy positions. I find this kind of moral coherence in Rick Santorum.
He does not separate moral, social, international and economic issues. He knows that we must care about expanding economic opportunity precisely because we respect the dignity of every human person and want to see our neighbor flourish.
He wants to expand participation in the market economy while respecting fairness in competition.
He insists that economic policy respect human initiative, promote mediating structures and be rebuilt from the bottom up and not top down. He affirms the dignity of all human work, precisely because of the dignity of every human worker.
His 2014 Book, Blue Collar Conservatives: Recommitting to An America That Works is worth reading. It is not same old/same old Republican/conservative recitations and sloganeering. It is plain spoken - "meat and potatoes" as my Dad used to say.
I just watched Rick Santorum give an interview in which he was asked about the abuse of executive authority by President Obama. He did not hesitate in his response. The man is plain spoken, courageous and unafraid of doing what will be needed to right the ship of State.
Rick Santorum understands the relationship between solidarity - we are our brother's keeper and have an obligation to the needy - and the ordering principle of subsidiarity. The word subsidiarity is derived from a Latin word which means help and assistance.
This view of governing insists that government begins with the smallest unit, the individual and the family. All other government exists in order to provide them the help and assistance they need. It affirms that the proper role of any government - above the family - must be to provide assistance and help, - not usurp the rightful role of the first government. It should also be handled at the level closest to the need.
This is referred to as subsidiarity. The principle of subsidiarity is not libertarianism. It does not posit the individual as the epicenter of freedom. It does not see all government as restrictive. It recognizes that we are not fully human, nor can we find true freedom, outside of relationships, and that governing begins at home.
It promotes and preserves ordered liberty by promoting and protecting the family, the mediating associations, and then proceeds outward to small and local governance, closest to those being governed and recognizing the source of our liberties.
It recognizes the primary role of the family and other mediating associations in the proper understanding of governance itself. The family is the first society, the first government, the first church, first school, first economy and first mediating institution.
Rick Santorum understands this.
His advocacy of a smaller federal government is NOT to espouse an anti-government message. He understands that governing begins at home. He properly criticizes the tendency in liberal and progressive circles to exalt overly federalized government - and the tendency to always move from the top down in models of governance.
He proposes a governing vision and economic policy which is rooted in a recognition of different types of capital; social, economic, moral, cultural and intellectual. He understands how together they can serve the true common good of society and promote a robust vision of freedom.
There are many voices pointing out the failures of the federal government - but there are few voices articulating an alternative; a vision for good and efficient governance. Rick Santorum offers such a vision of good governance; "good" in its moral foundation, as well as efficient and good in its practical application. We need this kind of vision and the blueprint which it presents for a true renewal in the United States.
Santorum also stands without any compromise or equivocation for the first freedom of religious freedom. He affirms the vital role that religious faith and the principles derived from such faith, play in securing freedom for all. He knows that religious freedom is a fundamental human right and articulates a clear and compelling understanding of the First Amendment, with both its establishment and free exercise clauses.
He respects the mediating role of religious institutions and recognizes the proper leavening role of the values informed by faith in the public square. Recently, in his leadership of Echolight Studios , he gave the Nation an outstanding resource, a film called One Generation Away: the Erosion of Religious Liberty.
Rick Santorum has been consistent and courageous in speaking out against the rising tide of Islamic radicalism for years. As we face the growing threat from the Islamic State (ISIS), and its vision of an expanding Caliphate, Rick Santorum is owed an apology from some who alleged that his warnings of this threat were overblown. He was correct.
Last August he wrote an outstanding editorial for Philly.com entitled Face Reality In the Mideast He could provide the kind of leadership needed on this increasingly dangerous international front. In that editorial he offered a reasoned, strong and clear agenda for confronting this threat with specific and practical policies. Here are a few of his insights:
"It is painful beyond words to behold the bloodthirsty brutality of the jihadists in the Middle East right now. But perhaps even more disturbing is the sight of an American president unable or unwilling to accurately assess the magnitude of the threat to America and our allies, and taking hesitant, awkward, vacillating half-measures in response.
"The forces of radical Islam are on the move. In Syria, nearly 200,000 people are dead. Millions are on the run. In Iraq, the jihadists are slaughtering Muslims, Christians, and other minorities. In Gaza, the radicals have fired more than 4,000 rockets aimed at massacring Israeli civilians.
"The jihadists may use different names (ISIS, Hamas, Islamic Jihad) and different tactics (rockets, tunnels, beheadings, crucifixions), but their goals are the same. Obliterate Israel. Topple our Arab allies. Establish an Islamic caliphate. Then launch a series of catastrophic attacks on the United States."
Santorum places respect for the dignity of every human person front and center of his political and governing vision. It is not an issue but a lens through which every other policy issue is approached, economic, social and international. Rick Santorum is unafraid to state what is objectively true, every person has human dignity, whether they are in the womb, a wheelchair, a soup kitchen, a hospice, or a prison cell.
We need a National renewal from the inside out. We need a courageous leader who can deal with the growing specter of militant jihadist ideologies from abroad - and the steady erosion of our moral foundation at home. The election of 2016 requires a serious response from all of us.
Rick Santorum is not an establishment candidate. He threatens establishment leaders in both major political parties. He has always played the role of the underdog and been counted out by the many self-professed experts.
I believe this is one of the greatest assets Rick Santorum brings to the 2016 Presidential campaign in the United States. He has the potential to draw voters from across party lines and help to forge a new governing coalition which can resuscitate the American dream - and set us on a course to brighter future.