Warrior of the Week: Sharon Poe

This week’s “Warrior of the Week” isn’t being recognized for her sudden bravery in the face of overwhelming opposition for last week, or even last month, But Sharon Poe has been fighting the good fight both in front of the camera and behind the scenes for a long time. Here is footage of her prior to fighting the Mason Levy during the summer of 2010.

If you listen to the radio, you’ll probably hear her. If you are watching TV and they are covering news regarding Mason, you’ll see her being interviewed. If you go to a school board meeting, you’ll most likely see her giving a speech. But with Sharon, that’s only a small part of what she does.

She amazed me during last week when she helped me coordinate on air interviews from Columbus with news organizations, and was able to turn around in the same afternoon and drop a load of “classified” documents to a major news organization that proves to be a bold and unprecedented move revealing a major cover-up that has been contained from the tax payers for years.

While doing all this she has fulfilled a leadership role within the Lebanon Tea Party, worked to advance “School Choice” as a viable option in Ohio, and maintained very close relationships with key politicians to advance legislation key to much-needed education reforms in Ohio.

For all those reasons and more, Sharon Poe is a “warrior” that if others did half of what she does in her commitment to justice, this world would be a free and wonderful place.

Rich Hoffman


The Overton Window and The Jonestown Tragedy: Richard Trumka’s Progressive Push

I’ve said it many times, I read a lot. A whole lot. And over 2010 one of the books that most jumped out at me was Glenn Beck’s The Overton Window. My daughter had bought it for me for Father’s Day and I read it in one day.

I hear people like Richard Trumka of the AFL-CIO talk about the “RIGHT WING” and you hear what comes out of his mouth and you have to wonder about his sanity. As far as a union leader, and a person close to the White House, which he says he speaks to daily, I would be ashamed if that guy where my boss or leader. He clearly doesn’t understand basic economics and its people like him that create the message that millions of union workers chant.

Here is Trumka speaking in March of 2009. He has no idea how the bill he’s speaking about will “expand” the middle class, and he doesn’t have any idea how this will drive up the labor costs. He just makes statements that people seem to blindly following without question. Something he accuses Beck and other people primarily on the political right of doing.

You can read here how he believes the best way to expand the middle class is through further taxation. http://www.theblaze.com/stories/afl-cio-boss-raising-taxes-is-best-way-to-create-jobs/

America is supposed to be a group of individuals, not a unified collective sum like Trumka speaks about. The Federalist Papers, which went on to become The Constitution were written to protect American from people like Trumka, and Obama. Those people and people like them taken by themselves are not bad people, but they have a dangerous ideology and they disguise it with a message the masses can understand. So it is not a far stretch to say that when I saw Trumka speak on February 26, 2011 that the best way to create jobs was to raise taxes, which I know from economics is false, yet people chant and cheer in approval, and I witnessed the union protests all across the country, it reminded me of Jim Jones, of the Jonestown massacre from 1978. Jones had several thousand supporters that followed him from Indianapolis Indiana, to San Francisco, then to Guyana South America. Jones was an admirer of Marx, Lenin, and Mao. That’s why they chanted this song at their church rallies in the early 70’s.

Jim Jones is a tough story to swallow. Because it is the extreme example of what collectivism can inflict on people. Jones was a proud socialist. What you are about to hear is the actual death tape from the Jonestown Massacre. Jones turned on a tape recorder and gave a final speech while his thousands of followers drank poisoned drink to their deaths. He calls it “revolutionary suicide” to an inhuman world. You will actually hear people perishing in the background, so if you have a soft stomach, don’t listen to this. This behavior is far from a joke. If you listen you will hear several people step forward and speak about the greatness of Jim Jones, their “Daddy,” and of the merits of socialism and communism.
The following clip is from the film The Guyana Tragedy and is a reenactment of what you will hear below.

Here is the actual death tapes. Now consider as you listen to this, these people speaking are just moments from their death. They know it. Listen to their thoughts and what they intend.

So what is the lesson here? Well, madmen have a way of lying to themselves and distorting the reality of the world around them. And such people are attracted to socialism, communism, progressivism and all those collective “ism’s.” At that point it no longer becomes a simple argument about economics and the best way to handle economic issues. It evolves into a struggle between good and evil.

That’s where I start seeing startling comparisons from people in the modern labor movement. What they are saying are simply the words their leaders speak.  Richard Trumka is a powerful union leader and in this recent case involving these labor protests, what he says in public, over a microphone, ends up coming out of the mouths of his followers.

Trumka, like many people attracted to those “collective ideologies” are prone to climb for power. History shows that it happens in every case. I don’t know of a single instance of a collective society that survives outside of a tribal village. The individuality inherit in the human being seems to break down true collectivism, and social experiments to water this tendency down in our youth have failed with terrible results. This is the reason the Tea Party has risen as a permanent movement, because many people are just tired of the “social experiments.” Many want to return to the original blue print that paved the way for the greatest nation on earth.

The Tea Party is a push back against the tendency of “collectivism” that has gotten out of control.

Whether or not he is aware of it or not, Trumka’s actions show that he is power-hungry and idealistic, and is essentially no different from someone like Jim Jones. It is quite possible that if that congressman from California had not went to Jonestown and been killed, Jim Jones and his followers would have lived for years without a mass suicide. But the scary thing about it is that Jones had to retreat to South America to have his utopian society. And the congressman was doing in that society much of what the Tea Party is trying to do in American Society. They are intervening and attempting to break up the dangerous collectivism that is consuming the nation.

Progressives are insistent in the modern age to not leave the country for their utopian society. They instead are intent to change the country itself. Here Trumka reveals what he is all about, which concerns me a great deal. It concerns me because watching his followers on Saturday; they seem to think he truly believes in this whole “middle class” protection. Yet he states otherwise.

Now this doesn’t mean Trumka is just like Jim Jones. Jones when he was in Indiana seemed like a reasonable guy. Thousands and thousands of people wouldn’t have followed him if they thought the path would take them to their sweaty deaths in a South American jungle within a decade. But Trumka’s followers behave almost identically to the congregation of Jim Jones, and that is what is troublesome.

Watch and listen to these clips from the Saturday Protests. And compare the behavior to what you heard from Jim Jones’s Congregation.

This brings me back to the Overton window concept introduced in Beck’s book. People can say what they want about Glenn Beck, but from what I know about the guy, he genuinely wants to get at the truth. His agenda is the truth. And that’s why he wrote his book, The Overton Window.

As I was reading The Overton Window, I realized that here is a guy that Time Magazine called the most dangerous man in American. Here is a guy hated by all these various progressive groups. Here is a guy that has become massively popular in a very short period of time. Here is a guy that has an agent that is very liberal. Here is a guy that knows a few rich people yet has not forgotten his humanity. Here is a guy that has hit the bottom, and realizes that it’s the little things in life that makes things precious. Here is a guy that would never, ever, under any circumstances be a Jim Jones. He might have the power to be, but he would not sub come to it. Glenn Beck is the kind of man who you could put a pile of gold in his lap, ask him to watch it for you till you come back, and when you returned 2 years later, he’d give it back without anything missing. Since he has a unique insight to how the game is played at the level he’s at now, the book, The Overton Window is a particularly rare opportunity for a reader. And I found the book and its concepts uniquely rich. It may not be the most profound literary work in history. But it is very bold in its attempt and it succeeds. What it is successful in doing is capturing the confusing political landscape that we are currently involved with revealing through a cleaver story what drives all the groups involved in creating their own Overton window that will pull society in their desired direction.
Here is the definition and description of what a Overton Window is as described in Wikipedia.

The Overton window, in political theory, describes a “window” in the range of public reactions to ideas in public discourse, in a spectrum of all possible options on a particular issue. It is named after its originator, Joseph P. Overton.

At any given moment, the “window” includes a range of policies considered to be politically acceptable in the current climate of public opinion, which a politician can recommend without being considered too “extreme” or outside the mainstream to gain or keep public office. Overton arranged the spectrum on a vertical axis of “more free” and “less free” in regards to government intervention. When the window moves or expands, ideas can accordingly become more or less politically acceptable. The degrees of acceptance of public ideas can be described roughly as:

• Unthinkable
• Radical
• Acceptable
• Sensible
• Popular
• Policy

The Overton Window is a means of visualizing which ideas define that range of acceptance by where they fall in it. Proponents of policies outside the window seek to persuade or educate the public so that the window either “moves” or expands to encompass them. Opponents of current policies, or similar ones currently within the window, likewise seek to convince people who these should be considered unacceptable.

Other formulations of the process created after Overton’s death add the concept of moving the window, such as deliberately promoting ideas even less acceptable than the previous “outer fringe” ideas, with the intention of making the current fringe ideas acceptable by comparison.

This site has an interesting twist on The Overton Window by describing it in four planes instead of just left and right, which I like.

What these extreme left groups have done over time is they pulled the Overton window radically to the left with key phrases like, “workers’ rights” and “tax the rich.” Or “all conservatives are Hitler.” 100 years ago at the start of the progressive movement these ideas were considered radical. But in the election of 1912, Eugene V.Debs had doubled the Socialist vote from 500,000 in 1908 to 1 million in 1912. This wasn’t some guy from Europe; he was born in Terre Haute, Indiana. In fact, the Socialists had their 1912 Convention in Indianapolis; the same place Jim Jones started his socialist church. Ronald Reagan toyed with joining the socialist party when he was a young man in Hollywood. It was after he traveled to England and witnessed what socialism had done to England through the Labor Party that he turned far to the right, out of fear for his country. But those people, those 1 million people who voted socialist in 1912 are out there, and they attached themselves to progressive ideas, they had children, raised families and found themselves drawn to the Labor Movement in America on the backs of the unions. Now many of those people aren’t bad people, but they are attracted to the collectivism of socialist concepts by their family culture and genetic make-up, because let’s face it, some people are more comfortable hiding in the masses and are not inclined to stand on their own.

Those poor, unfortunate souls are the people who end up following someone like Jim Jones in the extreme circumstance. And to a lesser degree, they find themselves repeating word for word what someone like Richard Trumka utters, without any care as to the relevance of his words. Trumka knows he can’t talk to an economist about how he represents the “middle class” or how “increasing taxes on the rich,” “creates jobs.” Those are just buzz words to stir up the followers. What Trumka is really after is moving the Overton window far to the left as was the trend during the entire 20th century. It happened because people weren’t aware of the threat and it just crept into our culture subtly. Trumka said it himself; he’s not in the labor movement for wages and benefits. He’s using the labor movement as a platform to change society, and that isn’t any different from Jim Jones who wanted to change the world through religion.

The Tea Party wants none of that non-sense. The Tea Party wants people like Trumka off our back, and wants to pull the Overton window back to the far right so that the recoil will leave the political spectrum back in the middle where it belongs. The caution is there because half the nation isn’t drinking the cool-aid of Trumka. Half is, roughly. The problem is that other half are made up of people who have evolved to expect an entitlement culture, so those aren’t the kind of people who will carry a nation by themselves. They’ll need a fanatical leader to lead them. The Tea Party has no such leader. Glenn Beck could disappear tomorrow and someone like Doc Thompson in Cincinnati would just take his place, or maybe the young man in the radio broadcast above. The movement is essentially leaderless, because it is built upon the ideas of self-reliance, which was what America was intended to be.

The real threat and real money being poured into politics isn’t coming from Rupert Murdoch, or the Koch Brothers. George Soros, and all the Hollywood left has poured far more money into political manipulation so there isn’t any room to talk. Yet if Trumka says “the conservative right is for the rich, and we are for the working man!” Look at all these contributors to the radical left! Yet all these people point to the right and say it’s “Wall Street, the rich, Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Sarah Palin, all are blamed for manipulating the American people when in fact it is these people that have committed the act of their accusations.

“The working man” is another false premise captured by the labor movement and placed into the minds of Americans by the Overton window. In Ohio 655,000 people work for a union, both public and private. That’s only 13.7 percent of the 4,787,000 million people who are employed in the state. That leaves over 4 million people not represented by a union, and don’t particularly want to be represented by a union. And most of those people are not in management. Most of those people are the real workers, and is proof that such extreme rhetoric as exhibited by people like Trumka to an army of people built on entitlement. Yet, because of the Overton window, the media, and the regular everyday people accept that “workers’ rights” represents union work, because that’s how the term was marketed.

The times we live in have these two ideologies colliding before us. And unlike in the past, people will have to choose. One side is the side of life, and one side is the side of doom. So we must choose and choose wisely. Because the time has passed where both sides can’t coexist together now that the radicals have made a move and shown their intentions.

Rich Hoffman