By Theodore R. Malloch
April 28, 2023
(Views expressed by guest commentators may not reflect the views of OAN or its affiliates.)
It is past time that conservatives took back the issue of conservation, which after all we originated in the first instance.
Conservation is the prevention of the wasteful use of resources and the development of sound economic and natural resource policies. One of its principles is subsidiarity, wherein matters are handled at the smallest, lowest, and least centralized competent level of authority.
The way to do that is manifold and starts with an admission that we may live in an increasingly, if not overly globalized world, where the movement of germs, warfare, people, and trade cross borders regularly but we all still reside in — a place. Those places need to be maintained, improved, upheld and that involves both growth and preservation. It is a matter of care.
All of us are from somewhere, not nowhere. I would underscore that there is no such thing as global citizens. Such phraseology is pure fantasy.
These rooted local communities are the places we live our lives in sovereign nations that are themselves defined by overlapping spheres of sovereignty, including our economies, our politics, and all the mediating structures of human existence. These “little platoons,” as Edmund Burke referred to them, our churches, temples, schools, civic associations, and families define who we are. They also give meaning to our existence and connect us to each other in profound ways. As one famous Harvard academic pundit put it some years ago, “we do not bowl alone.”
Only conservatives realize this fact. The Left constantly wants everything fully globalized, universal, with transnational corporations and UN like bodies completely running our lives. We don’t. Conserves conserve—customs, ways, traditions and elevate these aspects of life.
The way to fight back is to take a firmer hold of our local communities and all they embody, to ensure they are vibrant, livable places. We should stop globalism as an ideology and a practice in its tracks.
Here are a half dozen ways to do precisely that.
Having a boat load of so-called “friends” on Facebook is a joke. Drop social media and get some real in-person, face to face, reliable friends. Friendship is according to the literary giant, C.S Lewis, one of the four loves. It is underappreciated and has been relegated and forgotten in our fast-paced superficial society. For your health and companionship—you need real friends. A handful of true, long-term, lasting ones will do. Find them or you will have a very lonely existence.
When the French social commentator Alexis Tocqueville visited and wrote about Democracy in America in the early 19th century, he was astounded to find that Americans were very eager joiners. They belonged, literally to many associations, clubs, and civic groups of all stripes. This he thought made America a stronger more vibrant place. It built up trust and allowed us to work together to construct the greatest country the earth has ever witnessed, what President Lincoln rightly called, “the last best hope of mankind.” It also fostered a sense of well-being called patriotism or love of country.
Support Small Local Businesses
Our economic lives matter and where we spend our hard-earned dollars, invest, and work amounts to close to half of the time we spend on earth. Make it count. Don’t throw it away. Be prudent and make sound, wise decisions. Support the small companies in your region not the gigantic box stores, on-line megabrands or the transnationals who steal your jobs and don’t reinvest in your own communities. Shop for goods and services closer to home and with firms you can trust and bank on. SME’s make up over 70 percent of our entire economy, so give them your business, most, if not all of it.
Eat Farm to Table
We all need to intake calories to survive. Eating healthy natural foods that come from your own garden or local farms is a far better approach than consuming bad foods from mega-factory groceries with no attachment to your area or concern for pollutants, pesticides, or transportation costs. The farm to table restaurant movement is another great thing to support. Drop the junk food, the fast food and soda that will kill you and the foods that put your health and longevity at risk. Just say, no, to processed foods.
Move to a Rooted Place
Get out of the cities. They are places of hate, crime, drugs and are controlled by the most radical Democrat Progressives who are antithetical to everything you stand for and want. Leave now before it is too late. The suburbs are one option, an even better one is the further out exurbs, where the air is better and the people friendlier. Blacks would be better off and live fuller, longer lives if they left the dangerous inner cities and moved to the south or small towns. The schools are better and the streets safer. The other night I presented to my own local board of supervisors about a well-planned and zoned new development that preserved open spaces and walking trails while providing needed homes for families. I reminded the board that in the Hebrew Bible’s very first chapter of Genesis the command from our maker was to “build and to keep.” This twin mandate provides a prudent, conservative way, to be both a steward of the good earth and a faithful working servant who effectively uses their God-given talents.
Attend Church, Temple or Synagogue
Our Republic, if we can keep it, Benjamin Franklin and the Founders believed was an experiment in democracy based in the freedom of religion. The nation was founded in this spirit as witnessed by the Mayflower Compact and our Constitution. We are a city on the hill and the nation’s survival is based on observant, religious faith. This is not a theocracy and surely implies the separation of any established church. Yet today Americans are losing their spiritual zeal and falling out of faith. We won’t continue to thrive and succeed if we do not mend our ways, repent, and go back to our firm religious traditions. We need to put our trust in God. Go see the movie, Jesus Revolution in a local cinema, if you need inspiration.
Ted Roosevelt Malloch is CEO of Roosevelt Global Fiduciary LLC. He served as Research Professor for the Spiritual Capital Initiative at Yale University, Senior Fellow Said Business School, Oxford University and Professor of Governance and Leadership at Henley Business School where he co-led the Director’s Forum. His most recent books concern the nature of virtuous enterprise, the practices of practical wisdom and “virtuous business,” the pursuit of happiness, the virtue of generosity and the virtue of thrift. His latest book is Common Sense Business, co-authored with Whitney MacMillan, former Chairman and CEO of Cargill, the world’s largest privately held company. He has served on the executive board of the World Economic Forum (DAVOS); has held an ambassadorial level position at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland; worked in the US State Department and Senate; did capital markets at Salomon Brothers on Wall Street, and has sat on a number of corporate, mutual fund, and not-for-profit boards. He was very active in the Trump campaign of 2016. Ted earned his Ph.D. in international political economy from the University of Toronto and took his B.A. from Gordon College and an M.Litt. from the University of Aberdeen on a St. Andrews Fellowship.