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Articles,Books,Videos Reviewed Susan Freis Falknor on 22 Apr 2009 07:41 am

Will Conservatives Follow Mark Levin’s Survival Map?

Reviewed by Susan Freis Falknor

Liberty and Tyranny, a Conservative Manifesto, by Mark Levin, Threshold Editions, A Division of Simon & Schuster, Inc., New York, 2009.

“The Republican Party acts as if it is without recourse.  Republican administrations — with the exception of a brief eight-year respite under Ronald Reagan — more or less remain on the glide path set by Franklin Roosevelt and the New Deal.”

— Mark Levin

Conservatives will find Liberty and Tyranny, a Conservative Manifesto to be a lifeline as well as a roadmap — as we try to keep our heads above water during today’s flood of unprecedented threats to traditional American life and political values.

Levin elaborates – –

“Just as another Republican president, Herbert Hoover, laid the foundation for Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal, Bush has, in words and actions, done the same for President Barack Obama — the most ideologically pure Statist and committed counter-revolutionary to occupy the Oval Office.”

Liberty and Tyranny is also an understandable exposition of American political history. It pulls it all together.

There are many fine conservative book out there, but this one hits the target. And it is a blockbuster: number one on the Amazon and New York Times bestseller lists since its publication in March, Liberty and Tyranny is in its fourteenth printing with 800,000 copies either sold or printed. “That is more books than most cable TV shows have viewers.” as Levin pointed out on his radio show on April 14. “More than most radio talk shows have listeners.”

With a gift for getting across U.S. constitutional history to non-lawyers, Levin explores how traditional American political values came about; how they have deteriorated, especially since the New Deal; and how drastically they are threatened now.

The book is very much a call to action in the 21st century, advising how conservatives can win the long, tough struggle back to first principles.

One of the country’s best-known talk show hosts, Mark Levin is president of the Landmark Legal Foundation and an author. He was chief of staff to president Ronald Reagan’s attorney general Edwin Meese. With this book, Mark Levin lives up to his nickname “the great one,” bestowed on him by radio and TV commentator Sean Hannity.

Author Levin pulls no punches as he describes America today:

“It is a society steadily transitioning toward Statism. If the Conservative does not comes to grips with the significance of this transformation, he will be devoured by it.”

Levin identifies the ideals of America’s Founders, such as ordered liberty, the social contract, limited government, and natural law. He then dissects liberty’s enemy, the Statist:

“For the Statist, liberty is not a blessing but the enemy. It is not possible to achieve Utopia if individuals are free to go their own way. The individual must be dehumanized and his nature delegitimized. Through persuasion, deception, and coercion, the individual must be subordinated to the state. He must abandon his own ambitions for the ambitions of the state. His first duty must be to the state – not family, community, and faith, all of which have the potential of threatening the state. Once dispirited, the individual can be molded by the state.

The Statist’s Utopia can take many forms and has throughout human history, including monarchism, feudalism, militarism, fascism, communism, national socialism, and economic socialism. They are all of the same species – tyranny. The primary principle around which the Statist organizes can be summed up in a single word – equality.”

Statists have perverted the original meaning of equality, Levin notes.

The Founders understood equality as “the natural right of every individual to live freely under self-government, to acquire and retain property he creates through his own labor, and to be treated impartially before a just law”—what is sometimes referred to as equality of opportunity.

The Statist, by contrast, twists this ambitious but realistic goal, and uses “persuasion, deception, and coercion” to drive the people towards an always-receding future where inequities will supposedly, like the state under communism, wither away.

Levin anticipates little help coming from partisan politics as they are structured now. He points out that too many “clueless” Republicans have a disastrous predilection toward neo-Statism (Levin’s word for the mindset of those who are “subservient to a ‘reality’ created by the Statist rather than the reality of unalienable rights granted by the Creator”).

Here are some of Levin’s guides for action.

  • “The Conservative must become more engaged in public matters…. [Success] will require a new generation of conservative activists, larger in number, shrewder, and more articulate than before, who seek to blunt the Statist’s counterrevolution – not imitate it – and gradually and steadily reverse course.”

  • Parents and grandparents must take it on themselves to teach their children and grandchildren to believe in and appreciate the principles of the American civil society and stress the import of preserving and improving the society.”

  • “When the occasion arises in conversations with neighbors, friends, coworkers and others, take the time to explain conservative principles and their value to the individual, family, and society generally.”

  • “The Conservative should acquire knowledge outside the Statist’s universe. (Levin recommends the Avalon Project, the Atlas Economic Research Foundation, the CATO Institute, and the Heritage Foundation; academic institutions such as Hillsdale College, Chapman University; groups such as Young America’s Foundation, the Intercollegiate Studies Institute, and the Leadership Institute; publications such as Human Events and National Review; conservative internet columnists and bloggers; and talk radio.)

  • For all the apparent victories of the Left in “controlling the public vocabulary. . . the battle over language, like the battle over ideas, is one that conservatives should relish.”

  • “The Conservative must take heart from, and learn the lessons of, his nation’s history. America’s founding, the Civil War, and World War II were epic and, at times, seemingly insurmountable wars of liberty against tyranny, which would have destroyed the civil society had they been lost.” (Underscoring Forum’s throughout.)

Levin details specific approaches to many of the most hard-fought issues that conservatives face: taxation, environment, judges, the administrative state, government education, immigration, entitlements, foreign policy and security, faith, and the Constitution.

“For the Conservative, the challenge is daunting and the road will be long and hard,” Levin sums up. “But it took the Statist nearly eighty years to get here, and it will take the Conservative at least as long to change the nation’s direction. Still, there is no time to waste. The Conservative must act now.”

UPDATE SEPTEMBER 15, 2009! CNS NEWS – -”Never Reviewed by NYT or WashPost,Mark Levin’s ‘Liberty and Tyranny’ Has Now Sold 1 Million Copies.”


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