A Conflict of Vision

Mark and Amazona and I had an off-blog conversation recently about how we have begun to distance ourselves from friends or acquaintances who inhabit the left side of the political spectrum.  For most of my adult life I rationalized keeping such friends by convincing myself that it was “only politics”; that we basically wanted the same things for ourselves and our descendants; we just disagreed with how to get there.

One of the things that the Obama presidency has accomplished is highlighting the stark contrast between Liberals and Conservatives, not just on issues and not just on their approach to problem solving, but on a fundamental conflict in our vision for the future.

The greatest and most obvious conflict of vision is about the basic role of the central government where one side believes the success of government is defined by how many people are helped by government and the other side which believes the success of government is defined by how few people need help from the government.

But the conflict is much deeper and broader than that.  It is a conflict between:

  • The fundamental transformation of America and the fundamental restoration of America.
  • The belief that some people can neither handle nor deserve freedom, and the belief that the yearning for freedom is an inherent part of the human spirit.
  • The belief that America is the greatest force for freedom and prosperity in the world, and the belief that America is the source of most of the evil and misery in the world.
  • Doing what’s right all of the time, regardless of the consequences and doing what’s right only when doing so yields personal or political benefits.
  • Always telling the truth and ignoring the truth when it has negative political or personal consequences.
  • Voting for someone because you’re confident they will honor their oath to uphold the Constitution and voting for someone because you’re confident they will ignore or subvert the parts of the Constitution that you don’t like.
  • Case law and original interpretation.
  • Morality and moral relativism.
  • Learning from history and re-writing history to fit an agenda.
  • Dwelling on what’s good about America as opposed to dwelling on what’s bad about America.
  • The creation of wealth and the transfer of wealth.
  • Freedom of religion and freedom from religion.
  • A dynamic view and a static view on just about everything.
  • Defining success as actually helping someone in need vs. defining success as feeling good because you tried to help someone.
  • Accountability and avoiding responsibility.
  • Humility and hubris.
  • Criticizing policies because they’re bad policies and being accused of being racist for criticizing policies because the policy maker is black.
  • Becoming a color-blind society and using race as a political weapon.
  • Lightly-regulated free market capitalism and crony capitalism with rewards for supporters and burdensome regulations on and harassment of any company that doesn’t support your policies.
  • Policy making based on polling and policy making based on sound scientific and economic principles.
  • Transparency and closed door, secret deals.
  • Increasing tax revenue and decreasing spending.
  • Economic justice and economic liberty.
  • Social justice and justice for all.
  • The individual and the collective.
  • Results vs. intentions.
  • Conservation and eco-imperialism.
  • Victory and exit strategy when applied to military conflict.
  • An educational system that teaches how to think vs. what to think.
  • “Our plan didn’t work because we didn’t spend enough money”, and “your plan didn’t work because it was an unworkable plan.”
  • Eliminating incentive and fostering dependency vs. entrepreneurship and self-reliance.
  • Voting based on issues and voting based on the best way to govern.
  • Liberty and tyranny.
  • And ,ultimately, between the survival of the human race vs. the here and now.

So I ask my former friends and acquaintances on the Left — common ground?  What common ground?  We are in a fight for the soul of the greatest nation in the history of the world, and our conflict of vision for the future is so profound that I will, without hesitation, lay down my life to ensure that my descendants are not forced to live under your vision.


The Yeomanry & The Clerisy

I recently stumbled upon this excellent article in The Daily Beast from last October, and have never read a better description of the emerging class structure in this country, as unfortunate as that is. You may remember the old saying – as California goes, so goes the country – well let’s hope that this one time, we don’t follow California’s lead:

The OligarchsThe swelling number of billionaires in the state, particularly in Silicon Valley, has enhanced power that is emerging into something like the old aristocratic French second estate. Through public advocacy and philanthropy, the oligarchs have tended to embrace California’s “green” agenda, with a very negative impact on traditional industries such as manufacturing, agriculture, energy, and construction. Like the aristocrats who saw all value in land, and dismissed other commerce as unworthy, they believe all value belongs to those who own the increasingly abstracted information revolution than has made them so fabulously rich.

The  ClerisyThe Oligarchs may have the money, but by themselves they cannot control a huge state like California, much less America. Gentry domination requires allies with a broader social base and their own political power. In the Middle Ages, this role was played largely by the church; in today’s hyper-secular America, the job of shaping the masses has fallen to the government apparat, the professoriat, and the media, which together constitute our new Clerisy. The Clerisy generally defines societal priorities, defends “right-thinking” oligarchs, and chastises those, like traditional energy companies, that deviate from their theology.

The New SerfsIf current trends continue, the fastest growing class will be the permanently property-less. This group includes welfare recipients and other government dependents but also the far more numerous working poor. In the past, the working poor had reasonable aspirations for a better life, epitomized by property ownership or better prospects for their children. Now, with increasingly little prospect of advancement, California’s serfs depend on the Clerisy to produce benefits making their permanent impoverishment less gruesome. This sad result remains inevitable as long as the state’s economy bifurcates between a small high-wage, tech-oriented sector, and an expanding number of lower wage jobs in hospitality, health services, and personal service jobs. As a result, the working class, stunted in their drive to achieve the California dream, now represents the largest portion of domestic migrants out of the state.

The YeomanryIn neo-feudalist California, the biggest losers tend to be the old private sector middle class. This includes largely small business owners, professionals, and skilled workers in traditional industries most targeted by regulatory shifts and higher taxes. Once catered to by both parties, the yeomanry have become increasingly irrelevant as California has evolved into a one-party state where the ruling Democrats have achieved a potentially permanent, sizable majority consisting largely of the clerisy and the serf class, and funded by the oligarchs. Unable to influence government and largely disdained by the clerisy, these middle income Californians are becoming a permanent outsider group, much like the old Third Estate in early medieval times, forced to pay ever higher taxes as well as soaring utility bills and required to follow regulations imposed by people who often have little use for their “middle class” suburban values.


Yes, I Wonder About This, Too

What he said:

John C. Wright ponders. Ponder with him.

“Perhaps, like me, you have wondered how it is that so many people, otherwise honest, can adopt without demur the Orwellian anti-language of Political Correctness; how it is that so many people, otherwise rational, can adopt without demur the paradoxes, self-contradictions and logical absurdities involved in relativistic morality, materialistic ontology, subjective epistemology, and the other nuggets of vacuous blather forming the foundations of modern thought; how it is that so many people, otherwise possessing good taste, can without demur fund and support and praise the blurry aberrations of modern art, praise ugliness, despise beauty; how it is that so many people, otherwise good and peaceful, can praise and support and excuse the hellish enormities and mass murders of figures like Che and Mao and Stalin and Castro; or can view with cold eye the piles of tiny corpses heaped outside abortion mills, and make such enemies of the human race into heroes; or can rush to the defense of Mohammedan terrorists with freakish shrieks of ‘€˜Islamophobia!’€™ and ‘€˜Racist!’ even thought to be wary of Jihadists bent on your destruction is rational rather than phobic, and even thought Mohammedanism is a religion, not a race; how otherwise happy, moral, reasonable and decent people can not merely excuse sexual perversion, but will be swept up in a fervor of righteous indignation even if someone points out the biological or Biblical reality of the situation; and likewise excuse lies in their leaders, and adulteries, and abuses of power, and abuses of drugs, and any number of things these otherwise ordinary people would never do themselves.

“And, finally, perhaps, like me, you have wondered why it is that these people who are otherwise civil nonetheless can neither explain their positions nor stop talking, and their talk consists of nothing, nothing, nothing aside from childish personal attacks, slanders, sneers, and accusation, accusation, accusation.   Why are they so angry? Why are they so noisy? Why are they so blissfully unaware of the vice, injustice, ugliness and evil they support?

More on this pondering here.  He has some very good insights.  Of course, a lot of them were insighted a bit back and can be read here (yes, its a whole book).  Main thing is that it is good to fully understand where they – our Progressive friends – are coming from.

White House is Staging A Bloodless Coup!

OK, folks–here’s the deal- I don’t think too many people are realizing this:

1. We currently gather TEN TIMES the amount of revenue required to service our debt, EVERY MONTH.

2. The 14th Amendment states that WE MUST honor and service our debts; meaning that paying and servicing debt MUST COME FIRST.

3. Barack Obama has been threatening that we WILL DEFAULT on our debt if the debt ceiling is not raised in two days.

4. The ONLY way this can happen, is if Barack Obama IGNORES the 14th Amendment and REFUSES to service the debt. This means that Barack Obama MUST OPENLY DEFY the Constitution to bring about what he threatens will happen.

5. Understand also that I believe that Barack Obama FULLY INTENDS to carry out his threat. I believe that Barack Obama MEANS, in direct opposition to the 14th Amendment, to ALLOW the United States to go into default. Like a terrorist with his finger on the button of his suicide vest, he is threatening to DESTROY THE FULL FAITH AND CREDIT OF THE UNITED STATES, placing our economy in RUIN, unless Congress meets his every demand.

6. In effect, Barack Obama is staging what amounts to nothing less than a COUP– a complete usurpation of the power of the purse that IS EXCLUSIVELY THE PURVIEW of the duly and locally elected United States House of Representatives.

7. In completely and WILLFULLY ignoring his Constitutional responsibilities with respect to the 14th Amendment, Barack Obama has effectually denounced the primacy of the U.S. Constitution. He is effectively governing by EXECUTIVE FIAT.

In other words, Barack Obama HAS THROWN AWAY THE CONSTITUTION and is in effect GOVERNING AS A DICTATOR!


From The Mind of Thomas Sowell

Here is a recent article written by Thomas Sowell that speaks to the systemic failure of leftism, and something of which individuals on the left either choose to ignore, or choose to blame other external factors on for that failure. I believe it is the latter. Remember when Obama partly blamed the Japan tsunami for having a negative impact on his brilliant economic policies? How about the left’s penchant to blame the gun? In my opinion, there is simply no possible way to objectively look at the current state of our economy, our country, and our world, and claim that leftism is a success. The following is a very poignant excerpt of the piece, and I do hope this makes it over to the new rebuttal blog. Enjoy:

Why has evil been such a hard concept for many on the left to accept? The basic agenda of the left is to change external conditions. But what if the problem is internal? What if the real problem is the cussedness of human beings? Rousseau denied this in the 18th century and the left has been denying it ever since. Why? Self preservation. If the things that the left wants to control — institutions and government policy — are not the most important factors in the world’s problems, then what role is there for the left? What if it is things like the family, the culture and the traditions that make a more positive difference than the bright new government “solutions” that the left is constantly coming up with?

The Authoritarian Nature of This Progressive Regime

In what has gradually built up over the last decade, accelerated in the last five years, and has now reached epic proportions, our federal government has undeniably become authoritarian, and the only backstop is a very weak GOP, which certainly can’t give anyone much hope. And based on their tepid opposition to the ill advised immigration bill, it would appear that that opposition to this currently expanding authoritarian federal bureaucracy is all but lost, and the ideal of America will be lost with it. In the name of social and economic justice, the progressive movement, currently led by Barack Obama has successfully shamed, demonized, and lied about any one who had the temerity to oppose their agenda which has cowered too many people, and convinced the low information voter that opposition to their grandiose agenda is tantamount to wanting seniors to die and children to starve. Their control of the language and message has had a negative impact on our representative republic which has now morphed into a democracy more in keeping with those countries led by oppressive regimes that garner 95%+ of electoral votes. And the blame can not be laid entirely at the feet of Barack Obama. We have the vast liberal media complex to blame as well, which commands a large platform and presence with the low information. We have the entertainment complex which again commands a huge presence with those who idol worship, and we have the minions of Congress critters, and Senators who will say anything to retain their power & privileged positions.

It was very disheartening to see many GOPers fold and vote for this joke of an immigration bill, including my two Senators McCain and Flake. Every thinking person knows that if this bill passes the House, it will go into committee, and the border security teeth that was amended to the bill will be stripped away and we will be left with 1986 all over again. Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me, and that is exactly what is happening. On top of that, this immigration bill will hurt the low wage worker more than anyone, and isn’t that the very person “progressives” profess to care so much about? How you ask? Obamacare, wherein a penalty of up to $5,000 can be avoided if you hire a newly minted “undocumented worker”, who is not subject to the Obamacare mandates. So once again, Obama has acted outside the interests of Americans, who largely oppose this current effort at reform, and this is true on many different fronts. The majority of Americans oppose Obamacare, but this authoritarian regime shoved it down our throats. The majority of Americans oppose abortion on demand, but this regime continues to demonize anyone who opposes their desire to kill infants. The majority of Americans oppose recent tactics of the IRS, but this regime continues to avoid answering difficult questions. The majority of Americans oppose the NSA collecting emails and phone call records, but this regime continues the practice and lies about it in front of Congress. The majority of Americans oppose further restrictions on the second amendment, but this regime refuses to listen and will make another pass at legislation, after failing at a previous attempt by breaking the law and allowing illegal firearms to cross international borders resulting in the deaths of many Mexican nationals, to which they invoked executive privilege.

This “progressive” regime, is anything but progressive, and is quickly leading America down the road to authoritarian rule where opposition is not allowed, if not imprisoned.


We are living it now folks. We are up to our collective necks in liberalism and it wasn’t just a result of the last 5 years under Obama, of course he opened the throttle quite a bit, but this is a slow, festering symptom that started with Republican Theodore Roosevelt, picked up steam with Woodrow Wilson, accelerated with FDR, and reached overdrive with LBJ. And now we find ourselves mired in a mediocre stew of progressive feel good policies that have only served to bring the strongest, most economically robust, most individually free country to its collective knees. Ironically, the policies that progressives champion, hoping to “level the playing field”, do anything but and were strictly designed and marketed by a ruling class to win elections. There is zero intent by the leaders of the current Democratic Party, or the ruling class which includes many Republicans, to actually resolve the issues they promise to fix primarily because, to do so would render themselves useless. Their sole intent is to continue to amass money and power and doing so, requires a loyal, fever pitched base convinced that they need their benevolence and protection. For those conservatives who fear the onset of a socialist state, that ship has sailed – we are already there. The myriad of welfare programs, Medicaid, Medicare, SS and now Obamacare has America firmly planted in socialism.

What other current issues can we attribute to liberalism you may wonder? Take Benghazi – here is a ME outpost that sits in a chaotic country void of any leadership, specifically because of the recent actions of our military, and one that is rife with rogue and radical elements. The current liberal brain trust, which included Ambassador Stevens, thought that reinforced security measures were not important, and would send the wrong message, primarily because liberalism believes that the US military is part of what’s wrong with this world, not what is right. Therefore, their cavalier attitude towards radical elements resulted in four American deaths, and their attempt to obfuscate that fact has resulted in the recent scandal.

The IRS – liberalism believes that any opposition towards their high-minded policies is tantamount to malicious obstructionism and borderline treason (see Michael Moore), therefore, the intense scrutiny the IRS applied towards groups opposed to the administration was in line with the culture that liberalism creates.

The debt – Every dollar taxed and sent to Washington DC, is another dollar stripped from the private market, rendering it less powerful and more dependent on the government. It’s really that simple. By creating crisis’s that require additional spending and running up the debt, the Federal Government can convince their loyal base that taxes need to increase and the problems they face are not because of any actions of their own or the government, but because those with the money refuse to pay their “fair share”. Take for example Oklahoma – the Democrats are claming that they need to borrow more money to pay for the storm, are demonizing conservatives for wanting off sets, and not reminding anyone of the fact that Obama just sent $200 million to Syrian refugees that could have been used for the storm, or that there is $11 billion currently in the FEMA account. They are simply exploiting a crisis to rile up their base, demonize an opponent, and take more money away from the private sector.

These are just a few examples of what the disease of progressivism has wrought, and if we continue down this path, these and other problems will only persist and expand. As David Axlerod recently admitted, the Federal Government is too vast, our debt is too big, our problems are too pronounced, and our labor force is too small, but our country is too important. We currently have a President that does nothing, and knows nothing so it is incumbent upon us to be diligent and engaged if we are to ever repeal the progressive efforts, policies and mindsets that brought us to this point.

UPDATE, by Mark Noonan.  Axelrod tweeted that he hopes the bridge collapse will induce us mean, evil Republicans to pass more spending for infrastructure.  This is the kind of nonsense I think all of us on the right are sick of.  Axelrod’s President has been in office for more than four years; trillions of extra money has been spent since Obama took office, a great deal of it justified as money to rebuild infrastructure and here’s comes one of the dunces who put Obama in office to demand that we GOPers agree to spend even more money!  Tell you what, Axelrod, maybe if you and your buddy Barry hadn’t use the last pile of money just to keep your union buddies employed then that bridge would have been fixed!  I hold Obama and Axelrod personally responsible for this – they didn’t do their jobs and a bridge collapsed.  They’ve had more than four years to ensure that all bridges are inspected and necessary repairs done.  That is more than enough time – though I guess what with all the vacations, golf outings and neglect of embassy security, fixing bridges escaped our President’s notice.

Dystopia–In His Own Words.

Just prior to the 2008 elections, Barack Obama boldly stated,

“We are 5 days away from fundamentally transforming the United States of America” (October 30, 2008)

Many among my conservative friends took that to be so much fluff; pretty much liberal boilerplate consistent with his whole “Hope and Change” campaign message.  Given, however, Obama’s background, cutting his teeth with the radical leftists/communists of his day (i.e., Frank Marshall Davis, Bernadine Dorn, Bill Ayers, Jeremiah Wright) I believe I was one of the relative few that took him at his word.  Unlike most of America, conservatives such as myself and others who actually took the time to vet Obama, knew that background and worldview mattered, and that Obama’s past gave more than a glimpse of how he intended to govern in the present.

When Obama uttered those words, “.. fundamentally transform AmericaI knew he meant it. It was Obama himself who stated (emphases added),

“As radical as I think people try to characterize the Warren Court, it wasn’t that radical.  It didn’t break free from the essential constraints that were placed by the founding fathers in the Constitution, at least, as it’s been interpreted and Warren Court interpreted in the same way, that generally the Constitution is a charter of negative libertiesSays what the States can’t do to you; says what the Federal Government can’t do to you, but doesn’t state what the Federal government or State Government must do on your behalf.”  (Barack Obama, June 18, 2001).

There is no question that Barack Obama was unhappy with his perception of unequal distribution of wealth that America so unfairly championed, and that he wanted to transform this nation into something more ‘equitable’ in his eyes.  The question was how, and to what extent.  Just how does one “fundamentally”  transform a nation whose very basis for existence is freedom, itself?  The only feasible answer is to transform that already-free nation, into a nation with fewer freedoms.  Given Dinesh D’Souza’s brilliant insights as to Obama’s worldview engendered by his past, one knew that Obama’s absolute contempt for what he saw as America’s unequal distribution of wealth would result in his promoting policies that would necessarily stifle economic growth.   Obama’s America would no longer be one of unbridled economic opportunity; rather, America would be a nation of egalitarian outcomes, regardless of effort; to coin a phrase, to each, according to his needs; from each, according to his means.  

As a means of bringing about this transformation, America could no longer be a free nation.  No where as free, at least, as it was at the time of he assumed his presidency.  Liberties would need to be forsaken to bring about his vision of utopia.  The free market system would need to be reined in, and done so in no small measure.   Obama would have four years, eight at most, to make this happen.  This transformation would need to be done quickly, and in a big way.

Enter Obamacare, America’s first stop on its train ride to Utopia. Against the wishes of 60-70 percent of Americans, and without the vetting of congressional legislators who rammed through the legislation, the United States Federal Government took control of a full one-seventh of the American economy, which had the net effect of driving up the cost of health care for all involved,  taking away freedom of choice, relegating freedom of conscience incompatible with the party line to irrelevancy, while at the same time having the no-doubt intended effect of casting a chilling pall on America’s ability to sustain economic growth and prosperity.  For those who wish to argue regarding this latter point, how better to right the wrongs of the perceived injustice of unequally-distributed wealth than to stifle the engine that creates such wealth?

As I’ve said, Obamacare is but stop one on America’s train ride to Obama’s Dystopia.  Obama’s seeming assault on everything traditional America has held dear for centuries appears to have taken on epidemic proportions.  Remember- Obama only has three and three-quarter years left.  Those who haven’t yet felt the pinch of his “transformations,” most likely have not yet realized that they, too, have been pinched.   Obama’s willing media accomplices can only cover for him for so long before a critical mass of Americans, admittedly as dull as many of them are, will start to put two-and-two together and finally determine that the hopey-changey unicorn jockey they voted for may actually have had something to do with the plight in which they suddenly find themselves.

Then what?

When the critical mass of Americans finally wake up one morning, to find that they have been played as chumps, they are liable to get a bit–shall we say, testy. When this inevitability finally does come home to roost, The TEA party protests that grew out of Rick Santelli’s historic February, 2009 rant will no doubt look like a series of school pep assemblies.   Such civil unrest would certainly be difficult to quell, and will no doubt be yet another bump in the tracks on the way to Obama’s Dystopian dream.

What to do, what do do? You can’t just sick the military after the troublemakers. Well, you could, I suppose, but then you risk pissing off your fellow travelers who have had a history of contempt for men and women in uniform.

What to do??

Since, at least philosophy- and policy-wise, one can take Obama at his word, one may get a clue as to Obama’s plans by again, studying his own non-TelePrompter inspired rhetoric:

“We cannot continue to rely on our military in order to achieve the national security objectives that we’ve set.  We’ve got to have a civilian national security force that’s just as powerful, just as strong, just as well funded.”   -Barack Obama, July, 2008.

Yeah- remember that phrase?  Neither did a lot of other people.  Like the rest of Obama’s sordid past and rhetoric that if brought to the light of day would have rendered his election impossible, The media (true to their sycophantic nature) pretty much glossed over that little tidbit.  A powerful Civilian security force. Remind you of anyone?

So when you see articles like this, or like this, or like this, and then think, aww–Leo–take off that tinfoil hat!  You’re just blowing smoke.  That would never really happen here.  There’s no way.

Just remember.  I didn’t put those words into Barack Obama’s mouth.

He did.

With a Measure of Disgust…

Oath of Office
“I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter: So help me God.” -Oath of office for Congress.

Just words– without one iota of consideration as to what those words mean.

I’m just getting more and more nauseated every time I think of this whole damned bunch of traitors, liars, opportunists, and career criminals.

I’ve lost every iota of optimism and faith in government.

They are no longer public servants, placed in a position of trust.

They–the lot of them– are self-serving, egotistical leeches who are in it for no one but themselves.

The inmates have taken over the asylum.

God have mercy on our nation, and please, drain the swamp, once and for all.

I’m so disgusted.

A Nation At War

The reelection of Barack Obama by a thin popular margin, albeit a wide electoral margin, underscores a nation divided and unfortunately I don’t see much common ground anymore. The GOP controls the House, the Democrats control the Senate and WH, but the GOP governs 29 states, and controls the legislatures in 27 of those states, so each party have fairly strong battle positions, and the battle has commenced, starting with Michigan. There the GOP legislature passed a right to work which has the unions apoplectic and threatening, and engaging in actual violence. This comes on the heels of a hotly contested battle in WI earlier this year where GOP Governor Scott Walker successfully defeated a union uprising over collective bargaining. Arguably public unions have done more harm than good, of course many liberals including the entire MSNBC network and Mr. Obama will contest that assertion, but if anyone wants to really see the results of public unions they need look no further than Detroit, MI, and San Bernardino, CA, where 71% of the city’s budget goes towards public union pay and pensions which led the city to filing bankruptcy earlier this year. In Detroit, it’s reported that nearly 35% of the population receive food stamps and astonishingly nearly 46% aren’t even the work force, and this is an indictment on both parties. While the MI is traditionally a blue state having voted for Democrat Presidents since 1992, they recently voted in a Republican Governor, who helped initiate the right to work bill, and Republican Legislature and have been governed by a Republican 10 out of the last 16 years. So it seems that regardless of the party, public unions have successfully negotiated more than their fair share of their respective states treasuries for quite some time now, and the results are not good. Compounding this problem is the fact that union officials and their membership seem oblivious to this fact, and are evidently  unyielding, so the battle will go on and Mr. Obama is apparently willing to allow it rather than demonstrate leadership which come as no surprise.

If we are to ever right our countries financial ship, public unions will have to play a huge role, and as evidenced by WI and now MI, and the subsequent reaction from the WH, they have no intention of being responsible. The liberal media is also firmly in their corner, and the union leadership is prepared to “draw blood”, so this will be a very interesting four years and as far as I am concerned – I am up for the battle. These next four years could be Civil War II, that is unless Mr. Obama decides to lead. However, I am not holding out any hope on that.

UPDATE: How did I miss this?

 “This is just the first round of a battle that’s going to divide this state. We’re going to have a civil war,” – Jimmy Hoffa