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The Problem With Nice Republicans

When it comes to a political fight they fold. They are, frankly, just too nice.

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I like nice people. Nice people are, well, nice. It’s lovely to have a really nice neighbor who you can chat with and borrow a tool from every now and again. It’s great to have a group of really nice friends who care about you. Frankly, the world could use many more nice people. It certainly makes life more fun and enjoyable.

But there is a place where nice doesn’t always work. Yes, we should still be nice, but there’s also a place and a time in which we should not be nice. And this is my problem with nice Republicans.

I have some very dear friends, friends that I would consider lifelong friends. They are Republicans. Some of them are even conservatives although most of them are what we would call moderate Republicans. I love them to death. I would do almost anything for them if they needed my help.

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But they have a fatal flaw. They are too nice.

When it comes to a political fight, they fold. They are, frankly, just too nice. They want people to like them. They want to feel like we can all get along. They want to have unity, and usually the terms for the “unity” are determined by the Democrats. Don’t get me wrong, these nice Republicans are almost always on the Republican side of the debate. The problem is that the Democrats know that there are nice Republicans who are easily manipulated because of their kindness. They know that because of their kindness they will go along with almost anything if it means keeping the peace. When it comes to the old saying, “Don’t mistake my kindness for weakness,” their kindness actually IS a weakness.

There’s an old Bible verse that I remember quite often. It says that we should “speak the truth in love.” Do you see the two aspects there? There is truth and there is love. One problem in much of America today is that there are those who focus almost entirely on truth with no love, and there are those who focus almost entirely on love and there is no room for truth. Therein lies the problem for our nice Republican friends. They are all for the truth until things start to not be nice. As soon as those on the left begin to scream and yell at them, put them down, demean them, condescend to them, and the like, our nice Republican friends forget the truth in order to keep the peace. They kick their “niceness” into overdrive.

Well, as important as nice is, truth is far more important. If I had to choose between truth and nice, I would pick truth. Truth is the foundation of everything that we do. One of the great problems in America today is that there is no absolute truth. You can say almost anything – even something completely ridiculous – and demand that others accept your ridiculousness. And sometimes not only accept that you have a very weird belief but demand that they approve of what you know to be an absolute lie and falsehood.

So this is for you, my nice Republican friends. I love that you are a nice person. We need more nice people in the world. But when push comes to shove and I need somebody to throw down with me, I need you to be on my side. I need you to be willing to fight for what is true.

I’ve asked a few of my nice Republican friends over the last nine months or so as I’ve seen them cave to one demand after another from the left, “Is there anything that makes you angry? Is there anything for which you would fight for?” Do you know what most of them say? “Not really.” Their primary goal is to be liked by being nice. Nice is their core value. The primary goal is to keep the peace. The problem is that the left knows that there are enough nice Republicans that if they scream loud enough and throw a big enough temper tantrum, that the nice Republicans, the ones who do not hold truth as the highest goal, will buckle and cave and go along with the Democrats.

So my challenge to you is this. Are you nice? That’s great. But are you willing to stand up for the truth in the face of confrontation from the left, those who seek to destroy our country? Or will you be so nice, so willing to go along, so willing to seek peace with the enemy, that they manipulate you to the point where you allow them to steal your country and destroy your children’s future?

Perhaps it is time to stop being so nice. At least when truth is on the line. We need you to fight and stop being so nice.

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Chris is the President of the American Freedom Tour, one of the World's Top 50 Speakers and a member of the Motivational Speakers Hall of Fame. He considers it a privilege to be able to speak to people, help them lead successful lives, become extraordinary leaders and, masterful salespeople. Chris has authored twenty books with three million copies in print in 14 languages and over 450 articles on success, leadership, sales and motivation.



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Politics

What’s This Fuss About Conservatives Not Joining the Left in Cheering for Ukraine?

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At first glance, most of us thought Russia was out of line invading Ukraine. But then some leading conservatives started questioning things. They got sick of the Democratic-controlled government and MSM whitewashing history and not explaining to the American public how the war came about. We just got out of three years of COVID-19 misinformation, so bad that it probably led to the needless deaths of conservatives overreacting in disgust to the misinformation, so we’re highly skeptical right now of being told how to think. 

 

But the MSM then turned the right’s skepticism around on them and made them look like they supported Russian President Vladimir Putin, which is something completely different. They cherry picked statements by conservative leaders in order to do this.

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In a segment entitled, “Our leaders are lying about Putin’s invasion of Ukraine, and it’s insulting,”  top conservative Tucker Carlson said, “They’re forcing the entire American population to mouth childish slogans about good versus evil. It’s insulting, but worse, it’s not helpful.” 

 

He suggested looking to leading UK conservative Nigel Farage to understand the skepticism. Farage warned eight years ago not to provoke Putin, “the moral of the story is if you poke the Russian bear with a stick, don’t be surprised when he reacts.” Farage criticized the European Union’s expansion — and why not, conservatives have warned against a one-world government for years. He said encouraging Ukraine to join NATO, combined with NATO conducting joint exercises in Ukraine, needlessly provoked Putin. Bombing Libya —which many believe was a mistake now — and arming the rebels in Syria exacerbated the pressure. Farage pointed out the moral relativity involved, it’s not all black and white, “in the war against Islamic extremism, Vladimir Putin … is actually on our side.” 

The Biden administration has been a disaster so far, from the bloody withdrawal from Afghanistan to record inflation and now the Russia-Ukraine war. So Democrat hacks are desperately spinning to look good, forced to defend their actions under President Barack Obama that deliberately antagonized Putin, bringing this on. They’re spinning Carlson’s remarks, especially his obviously sarcastic ones, into making him look like he supports Putin, which isn’t accurate. And they conveniently leave out the fact the Democrats stand to benefit financially from a war in Ukraine. 

 

So far, the Biden administration is doing almost exactly what Carlson advises (Carlson merely seems a little more hesitant about some of the sanctions)  — not getting involved militarily to stop Putin, since the ramifications could drag us into another Vietnam War, or at best, another Iraq War.

 

Sen. Rand Paul was criticized for questioning giving Ukraine financial aid, but that’s because he’s one of the biggest fiscal hawks in Congress, concerned about “taxpayers who are struggling to buy gas, groceries and find baby formula.” Trump said the invasion was “genius,” but that’s not the same as agreeing with it. 

 

A lot of the quibbling gets into the minutiae. Some on the right point out that Ukraine is not a democracy, then get slammed for pointing that out as if they’re on Russia’s side. Well according to ratings and rankings of how democratic countries are, Ukraine’s scores are mediocre. The  Economist Intelligence Unit’s 2021 rankings place Ukraine at 86th in the world, tied with Mexico, in a section of countries described as “hybrid regimes” due to their authoritarian leanings. Russia is ranked 124, in the authoritarian section.

 

Where is the questioning of the left’s motives? They jeered at the right for many years for being too interventionist, accused conservatives of trying to make the U.S. the world’s police. Now they’re doing exactly what they accused us of with a straight face; they’ve become more interventionist than the right. Biden said Putin is a war criminal who needs to be removed from office. So where were they defending the U.S. in Vietnam and Iraq? 

 

It’s surreal watching them condemn the type of statements some on the right are saying that they themselves said about Vietnam. Former Hawaiian Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, a conservative Democrat, has been slammed for asking on Carlson’s show, “Are we prepared to see our loved ones burn alive in a nuclear holocaust in a war with Russia over Ukraine?”

 

Evangelicals, who generally represent the conservative base, support Ukraine over Russia in similar numbers to the general population. This is more evidence some of our conservative leaders are deliberately being misinterpreted by the MSM.

 

Amost no one supports Russian troops murdering thousands of Ukrainians. It all comes down to the Democrats cleverly twisting the words of prominent Republicans. During CPAC this year, a plane flew overhead with a banner stating “Putin Welcomes CPAC to Orlando.” Tellingly, it didn’t come from the right; a Democratic political action committee paid for the banner in order to spin the false mantra. 

 

The Democrats are attacking the right for doing what we do, fully analyzing all aspects of a political issue. Unlike them, we value the freedom to think for ourselves and do not enjoy being told by the government and MSM how to think monolithically. 

 

Look at our conflicted history with Afghanistan. The U.S. supported the mujahideen fighters in Afghanistan in the 1980s against the Soviet Union, which enabled the Taliban takeover in the 1990s. But that switched after 9/11, and we worked with NATO and the Northern Alliance to topple the Taliban regime in 2001.  

 

The Democrats are trying to deflect from the fact Putin is not afraid of Biden, so Biden is ineffective at bringing the war to a close. Many believe if Trump had been in office, Putin would have never dared to invade Ukraine. They had “detente,” a word the MSM will never bring up now, but what effectively worked under President Ronald Reagan in dealing with the Soviets. Putin held a begrudging respect toward Trump, and was secretly terrified that if he pushed him too hard, Trump would hit back hard. The real question people should be asking is why have the Democrats decided to do a 180 on interventionism for this war. 

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Education

Academic Underachievement As a Permanent Condition

Academic achievement occurs through individual effort: One boy and one girl after another rising above

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On the state and local level, as decisions are made about how and in what form we will educate the nation’s children, an age-old issue remains. The underlying causes of income inequality and civil unrest likely has less to do with media-inflamed coverage and more to do with a lingering issue that few people want to earnestly discuss: educational disparity.

In virtually every U.S. school system, the disparity year after year, decade after decade, and even longer, in mathematics competency, reading proficiency, test scores, honor roll status, and graduation rates, between African American students and other students is disturbing.

A Disturbing Reality

Here in the third decade of the third millennium, with a male African American high school dropout rate at 40% across the U.S., can anyone view the situation optimistically? Any responsible American would understandably be concerned.

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As Eric Hanushek, who is a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research, as well as a senior fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution, exclaimed “It’s remarkable.” Following his extensive analysis of the situation, he remarked, “I knew that the gap hadn’t been closing too much, but when I actually looked at the data I was myself surprised.”

In one community after another, and one school system after another, when strenuous efforts to bridge the gap do not bear fruit, invariably someone yells “foul,” as if some grand conspiracy is occurring and a magic wand, yet to be waved, could suddenly redress all. And, as if hard-working, dedicated teachers are not attempting their utmost for each of their students.

An Undesired Path

Consider the school system in Chapel Hill-Carrboro, North Carolina. This locale, deemed, “The southern part of heaven,” by a variety of writers, is among the most progressive in the United States. The teachers and educators here have a vested interest in demonstrating that their school system, beyond all others, can succeed in the vital area of closing achievement gaps between whites and minorities.

Nevertheless, year in and year out the gap remains. So, the Chapel Hill-Carrboro Board of Education becomes primed to try anything! Another in an endless line of supposed “fixes” was to eliminate the advanced math classes in the middle schools and to lump all non-pre-algebra students together, with similar plans to eliminate other advanced classes such as in language arts.

Just as you cannot easily erect a sound building on quicksand, and you cannot expect to solve a decades-old problem by starting with a shaky foundation. Taking a lowest common denominator approach to developing school curriculum has never consistently worked, anywhere. It frustrates the students and dramatically increases a teacher’s burden – all such students must then be taught at individual learning speeds. Do you know any superhuman teachers? If so, could you afford them?

Face the Real Issues

Permanently closing the academic gap between underachieving students and the rest of the student population requires addressing reality – airing the truth about the disparity – not resorting to politically “correct” psychobabble and curricula finagling for another ten years, and then another ten, and then another.

This disparity encompasses such issues as the number of hours the television is on in given households, family or parental encouragement for completing homework assignments, a regular workspace, and established hours for studying in a quiet environment, among other factors.

Until solid analysis, exploration, and programs that address these issues are undertaken, no amount of wrangling with classes will prove to be the “winning formula.” And, school boards will have no chance of effectively addressing the continuing problem of poor academic performance among student groups.

In Arthur Conan Doyle’s short story The Sign of Four, detective Sherlock Holmes says, “…When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.” The schools in U.S. communities routinely exhaust talented teachers with a task that cannot be solved by them, nor is it theirs to solve.

Students Eager to Learn

However improbable to those who wish to pretend otherwise, academic achievement occurs through individual effort: One boy and one girl after another rising above and cracking the books, then coming to class as serious students, eager to learn, and primed to excel. Such achievement is not likely to occur any other way.

Otherwise, expect that income inequality and civil unrest will continue for decades into the 21st century.

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