The Scots

The Scots –  by Mustang who writes at Fix Bayonets and Thoughts From Afar

A bit of change (but not much) for our usual fare of modern American politics. I am writing today a trifle report on a manuscript by former Secretary of the Navy Jim Webb —also a former senator and a presidential candidate in 2006. Webb’s book (one of them) is titled Born Fighting: How the Scots-Irish shaped America. It is a book worthy of your time if (a) your Scots-Irish, (b) being an American still thrills you, and/or (c) enjoy reading good history.

Essentially, somewhere around 30 million modern-day Americans can trace their lineage to the Scots. This is somewhat amazing, considering that the number of people living in Scotland today only numbers around five-million. Scottish culture has been formed by centuries of continuous warfare, beginning with their migration from the Emerald Isle into the land of the Picts, whose own quite sophisticated society, we are told, the Scots eventually replaced. I’m no anthropologist, but I believe the Picts are still with us today, only we know them as “Scottish Highlanders.”

Chronologically, we obtain the word Scot from the Roman Latin word Scotii; it is simply what the Romans called the Gaelic speaking people living north of present-day Hadrian’s Wall. The sobriquet remains, and today it includes those who migrated to present-day Scotland from Ireland around 400 A.D.

Someone with more wit than I once observed that the number one export from Ireland and Scotland were the Scots-Irish people. What pushed them out of their homes and on to America’s doorstep? Somewhere between 250,000 and 400,000 Scots-Irish immigrants found their way to America in the 17th and 18th centuries. They mostly traveled in family groups; they brought with them their cultural view of the world around them, and they brought their skills as warriors and rebels. If we examine them closely, we’ll find strong individualism, an innate distrust of aristocracy, a military tradition, and a strong sense of duty.

America was not the only place these people went, but inside the United States there were two major waves of immigrants. The first group were mostly protestants; they were welcomed by the English and celebrated for their contributions to the settlements. A second group in the mid-1800s were not quite as welcomed; it had to do with their religious beliefs and the time-period of their arrival in the Americas. Within the first wave, we find men and women whose attitudes and values were predominantly working-class/populist. In the second group came the founders of America’s labor movement; men and women who rejected capitalism in favor of socialist ideology.

Webb’s book, Born Fighting, seeks to chronicle the shaping of the United States. It is a well-written narrative history that brings understanding to many of our perplexing issues of the day. The story begins nearly two-thousand years ago north of Hadrian’s wall; the tale continues with an account of Scotland’s struggle with England … altogether showing how Scotland was formed from conflict, while England’s history was formed around commerce and trade. The Scots and English fought over several hundred years—conflicts which even extended into Northern Ireland. One of the major push factors from both Scotland and Ireland was starvation —people left in droves.

We must acknowledge that the Scots are a people who not only fought for England through two world wars, and numerous other engagements, but they also fought in the American Revolution. They wore both red coats and blue coats … some wore clothing made of buckskin. Easily forty percent of America’s Continental Army were composed of Scots; they included such persons as Daniel Book, George and William Rogers Clark, Meriwether Lewis, David Crockett, and Andrew Jackson.

The Scots helped to settle America’s frontier; they helped to define American culture. One only has to listen carefully to American country music to discern the influence of Scotland. In literature, the Scots gave us Edgar Allen Poe, Samuel Clemens (Mark Twain), and in political and military leadership they gave us Stonewall Jackson1, Ulysses S. Grant, Lewis B. Puller, George S. Patton, and Ronald Reagan.

Throughout America’s formative years, the Scots living in America experienced cultural isolation and hard times, but they were stubborn and refused to give in to either an over-bearing government, or the equally over-bearing industrialists. Today, the continue to dominate the blue-collar work force. They remain a primary enlistment pool for America’s armed forces. They form the so-called Bible Belt; they continue to dominate country music.

Mistrust of the political elite continues even today, but on the downside, it is apparent that many of the Scots-Irish are easily misled by the same people whom they profess to distrust: politicians. Today, they tend to vote Democrat for no other reason than because their ancestors did2. They are convenient targets of political rhetoric and the divide and conquer of class warfare. After decades of being told by politicians that “the rich” are their enemy, the modern Scot envisions anyone more well-off than they are, were somehow born with a silver spoon in their mouths. Born Fighting is a good read, because it causes inward reflection.

The Scots arrived in America believing in liberty, property, equality, and limited government. We must then wonder, how did such a stubborn, prideful people become duped into neo-liberalism? How did such a powerful, patriotic, and individualistic cultural group ever get to the point of embracing socialism?

The answer to the foregoing is that it is part of a global trend. I’ve recently had the privilege of spending several months in the United Kingdom, including England, Wales, and Scotland. Yes, there are “conservative” elements within these societies, but among the Scots I found a very large number of people who think that since government has for decades taxed them into oblivion, and as government have promised them something for nothing, they are entitled to “something” at “someone else’s expense.” There is a belief here that they are entitled to a share of Britain’s national treasury.

Concluding now, I’ve found what seems to go hand in hand with British liberalism is a very large number of homeless people, thieves, pickpockets, and druggies. No matter how many times these people go to jail for breaking the law, they go back on the street as soon as they are released. The once proud Scot has been beaten into submission by all the factors of politics that we despise. Their educational system is an abject failure, and if the government wants to silence voices of discontent, they stick a cookie in their mouths. What is actually happening is that over the years, a once-proud and fiercely independent people are being beaten into submission.

I believe that what I am seeing here in the UK is the future of America. Are we smart enough to turn this trend around before it’s too late?

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Hillary Clinton and her accomplishment ‘fibs’- ‘I brought peace to Ireland’

Hillary is being pressed on her accomplishments. I thought I would give us a heads up before her ‘fibs’ take hold. An ounce of prevention goes a long way. I know she is digging deep, so I thought this little number might get the ball rolling. She presented this fib during her 2008 Presidential campaign.

Now on to the truth of the matter.

If you’re running for president on the basis of your claims of experience, when you then cite examples, you should be careful to be accurate,” Craig said. “The evidence should be accurate. And my point is that Senator Clinton and her supporters have in serious ways overstated, if not grossly exaggerated, the nature of her experience.” FACTCHECK: Hillary’s Adventures Abroad March 13, 2008 We find some exaggerations in Clinton’s claims of foreign policy experience.

UK: Irish Pastor Faces Prison for “Grossly Offending” Islam

No, this isn’t Pakistan, or some other Muslim country. It is Northern Ireland. Think this can’t happen here? Last week’s Supreme Court ruling sets the table. Keep your eye on this one. Here we go:

An evangelical Christian pastor in Northern Ireland is being prosecuted for making “grossly offensive” remarks about Islam.

Pastor James McConnell of Belfast: “I have no regrets about what I said. I do not hate Muslims, but I denounce Islam as a doctrine and I make no apologies for that. I will be pleading ‘not guilty’ when I stand in the dock in August.”

James McConnell, 78, is facing up to six months in prison for delivering a sermon in which he described Islam as “heathen” and “satanic.” The message was streamed live on the Internet, and a Muslim group called the police to complain.

According to Northern Ireland’s Public Prosecution Service (PPS), McConnell violated the 2003 Communications Act by “sending, or causing to be sent, by means of a public electronic communications network, a message or other matter that was grossly offensive.”

Observers say that McConnell’s prosecution is one of a growing number of examples in which British authorities — who routinely ignore incendiary speech by Muslim extremists — are using hate speech laws to silence Christians.

McConnell, who turned down an offer to avoid a trial, says the issue of Christians being singled out for persecution in Britain must be confronted, and that he intends to turn his case into a milestone trial “in defense of freedom of speech and freedom of religion.”

McConnell’s comments about Islam comprised less than ten minutes of a 35-minute sermon that focused on Christian theology.

The blowback was as swift as it was predictable. The Belfast Islamic Center, which claims to represent all of the 4,000 Muslims thought to be living in Northern Ireland, complained to police, who dutifully launched an investigation into whether there was a “hate crime motive” behind McConnell’s remarks.

McConnell later issued a public apology, but he refused to recant. He also rejected a so-called informed warning. Such warnings are not convictions, but they are recorded on a person’s criminal record for 12 months. Anyone who refuses to accept the warning can be prosecuted, and McConnell now faces six months in prison. The first hearing of his case is set for August 6.

More over at Gatestone Institute with the Pastor’s remarks.

Almost Half of Ireland is Privately Insured, Despite Free National Health Insurance

Obamacare has been swallowed up with all of the news out there. I caught this story, and thought it worthy of a post. For anyone who thought that at the worst, we might be able to purchase our own private insurance, this is a lesson. You think that you will escape the government? Ireland now increased a 40 percent “levy” on insurance companies. “Levy”??

Despite the fact that all individuals have access to public health insurance, a near majority of Irish residents also buy private health insurance as well. In June 2012, 2,123 million people — or 46.3 percent of the population — held private health insurance.

Private health insurance, however, is under attack. In June 2012 there were 61,000 less people privately insured than in June 2011.

The reason for this is the rise in cost of private health insurance, due in part to a 40 per cent increase in the Government levy on private health insurance announced at the beginning of the year. In fact, the rise in private healthcare costs has been a leading contributor to the rise in the consumer price index over the last year. From NCPA

Hillary Clinton has problems with the truth again. Fibs in Northern Ireland

Leprechaun-Hillary-Clinton

Leprechaun-Hillary-Clinton

Remember Hillary Clinton’s infamous gaffe about gunfire in Bosnia? Hmm. Now, questions are emerging about the accuracy of her remarks during a trip to Northern Ireland this week. Well, Hillary just can’t help herself. Great for a Secretary of State.

What is it about Hillary Clinton and conflict zones?  A largely fictional account of a dangerous landing under gunfire on a Bosnian airstrip last year. Now, doubts have arisen over comments she made this week relating to Northern Ireland. “We stayed at the Europa Hotel, as I have again this time, even though then there were sections boarded up because of damage from bombs,” she said. The only problem is that it isn’t quite true. A spokesman said it had nothing to do with any bomb damage, and added that there were no “rooms with holes in the walls or no glass in the windows or anything like that.” 

During her bid for the presidency last year, she told NPR that she had been “instrumental” in the peace process. She also claimed during a CNN interview that “I helped to bring peace to Northern Ireland.”

Critics accused her of exaggerating her role, insisting that her involvement had been largely symbolic.

http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2009-10-14/oops-did-she-do-it-again/full/

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