Posts Tagged ‘Government Reform’

The GOP Establishment’s Willingness to Lose

Monday, January 23rd, 2012

How They see Us

Watching the post-South Carolina reaction of the GOP establishment and all of its various and sundry shills in media, I’ve come to the inescapable conclusion that there is a disease greater than Obama’s radical leftism that makes us vulnerable to him.  The Republican establishment is committed to destroying Gingrich because he’s not one of them, but I also think because they may not want to win.  If you listen to what they say, and compare it to what they do, it’s clear to me that staving off a candidate who Tea Party folk would prefer is more important to them than the possibility of losing the election. You shouldn’t be shocked that the establishment would prefer to lose to Obama, because in truth, they’re more interested in keeping their gravy train running than fixing the country, and there are at least three reasons this is true.

Culturally, the elite is more amenable to the ideas for which Obama stands.  Obama is a big government statist, and so are most of the people in the GOP establishment.  Their first response to any issue, much like Obama’s, is to imagine a government solution that will involve kickbacks and patronage jobs to their well-connected friends.  These people are all friends, left or right, and they tend to prefer the company of their establishment opposites to the “barbarians” and “riffraff” who constitute the base of their respective parties.  These are the people who descend from on high to participate with you in more humble fare when it suits their political ends. Otherwise, you’re the residents of flyover country, and your job is to shut up and do what you’re told.  They will not be hurt in the least by Obama-care, or any of the other plots and programs and government schemes concocted in Washington DC.  New health-care plan with death panels?  Not for them.  New regulations that make it impossible to start a small business?  Not with their friends.  An economic crisis that would make Herbert Hoover shudder?  It might make a small dent in their accounts, but the difference will generally be negligible.  The simple point is that Barack Obama offers no real threat to them, and besides, they’d prefer to drink cocktails with him than oppose him.  To this jet-set, you and I are unimportant, and our individual goals in life are so pedestrian.  They view us as they view the gardeners and mechanics and all the others they hire:  Important, but interchangeable cogs in support of their lifestyles.  Understand that I’m not talking about “class envy” here, because I surely do not begrudge them their relative wealth.  It’s their attitude that strikes me as fundamentally bankrupt, and it’s encapsulated in the sentiment: “I’ve got mine,” as they ignore the fact that you would like a similar opportunity to pursue your own.

The party insiders wants a safe nominee, who will neither cause them the loss of the House, nor even risk it.  They need to maintain control of at least one house of Congress in order to have the bargaining power necessary to shove provisions into legislation that will allow them to personally profit from the resulting market blow-back, and from insider information.  It’s what they do, and if the control of Congress is at least split, they will maintain that bargaining position. A “safe” candidate like Romney probably wouldn’t risk costing them the House, but such a candidacy might well not gain the Senate, or much of anything at all.  That’s fine with the establishment, so long as there are no losses.  The point is that Congress frequently functions as an extortionist’s protection racket, or plays favorites, and those who control the leadership are able to work out their own deals.  Worst of all, Gingrich is a guy who knows where some of the bodies are buried, and he’s exposed a few of them before.  Whether Gingrich would use that knowledge for reform is another question, but the establishment doesn’t wish to take any chances.

The party elite would just as soon lose because they hope the Tea Party will go away, and they see the re-election of Obama as a political repudiation of the Tea Party.  This is because the Tea Party has come awfully close to discovering how deeply the establishment’s profiteering runs, and the legislation the Tea Party-inclined Americans would like to see would upset too many profitable apple-carts.  More, the Tea Party is not under their control, and what they dislike even more than the party followers of their opponents is the somewhat less predictable nature of the Tea Party.  Tea Party folks don’t necessarily toe the party line, and it was mainly a number of their forerunners who in 2006 sat out the elections giving the House back to Democrats because of Republican over-spending.  These are Americans who don’t care so much about party, but instead are concerned with the general direction of the country, and the implications of gigantic deficits and debt.  These are the people whose wrath will be known in November 2012, and it is their energy that propelled Gingrich to victory in South Carolina.  One thing the party insiders hate is a segment of the electorate that can so easily overturn their plans, which is why when the Tea Party has come under attack from the left, they have generally sat by in silence,  saying little or nothing in defense of the Tea Party.  They are hopeful that the left will make some hay and beat down the Tea Party, because it’s a threat to the GOP establishment every bit as much as the left.  Re-electing Obama increases the chances that Tea Party will fizzle and go away.

These are the three most important reasons that the GOP establishment does not want a candidate with real Tea Party connections, and may be willing to lose in order to stave one off.  I’m not suggesting to you that Gingrich is necessarily a strong Tea Party candidate, but the fact that he is in search of a constituency while the Tea Party seeks a candidate may have made for a marriage of convenience, as South Carolina demonstrated.  What you ought to know and recognize is that the GOP’s elite are not very happy with the state of things, with Gingrich as the apparent front-runner at the moment, but they’re not done just yet, and if they can’t swing a candidate they want, many of them would just as soon lose as permit anything to bring their gravy train to a screeching halt.  It’s not merely direct and thorough reformers who they fear, but anybody who is not under establishment control.  The question for you may not be Romney vs. a purported non-Romney, but instead establishment vs. non-establishment, although for the moment, it seems the two are the same.

A Century of Unreality: Shall We Begin Another?

Friday, January 20th, 2012

Trouble Ahead?

The last one-hundred years or so have been unlike any other in human history.  From heavier-than-air flight, to widespread personal modes of transportation, to microprocessors that churn through massive calculations at mind-bending speed, our technical sophistication has created a world that none alive two centuries before would have had the audacity to envision.  Even the greatest visionaries of the early nineteenth century could not have foreseen what has been accomplished by all of mankind, but particularly seeded in the West, and most particularly in America on the shoulders of one unalterable truth:  Reality is real.  What is, is, irrespective of what some profoundly pathological liar may say to a grand jury while on the witness stand.  No country in human history had ever paid greater devotion or service to this truth, and yet with the beginning of the progressive era, no country has worked harder to undo the reality on which its existence and its prosperity depends.  The question now confronting us, if we are brave enough to acknowledge it, is whether we have had enough of unreality and wish to return to our previous condition of growth and success, or instead remain fixed on a course of self-destruction in pursuit of an unreality for another century.

If we choose the latter, it will be a short century, for it shall complete our destruction.  One cannot survive by pretending one’s belly is full, any more than one can pretend it will be filled without effort.  Life is not sustained without action on its own behalf, and yet ours is a culture beset by the bankrupt notion that life may be lived without gainful effort.  How much time in any given day is devoted to the effort of doing nothing?  How many idle hours are exhausted in pursuit of relentless indifference to one’s own existence?  The number is now incalculable, and yet we can see its cost all around us.  This years marks the ninety-ninth that our nation has pretended that value can be created out of nothing.  The Federal Reserve system, enacted into law in 1913, promises to use the manipulation of debts in order to add more currency to our circulation, but it also promised that we would gain wealth by this process.  In 1912, sixteen US Dollars would have purchased for you one ounce of gold.  Now, one-hundred years later, you will need more than sixteen-hundred dollars to buy that same ounce of gold.  This is a measurement of the scale of our century-long unreality.

It is not only in our currency that we permit such self-fraud.  We permit it primarily in our government, and in our daily existence, because it is easier to accept a beautiful lie than an ugly truth, and we are so much more comfortable with the former.  How many Americans now do no labor, today, tomorrow, or any time in the future, and at no time in the recent past?  How many Americans create no new wealth, but instead rely upon others to maintain the flow of their daily bread?  This number now measures not in the tens of millions, or even one-hundred million, but more than one-half of all Americans now receive regular disbursements from government for something other than goods, labor, or services rendered.  It happens at all levels of government, and in all levels of society.  From the poorest to the richest, we are a nation now ruled by the majority who constitute the beneficiaries of an all-encompassing welfare state.  I must compare modern American thinking to an iPhone commercial, but rather than “apps,” it seems for every imaginable want, need, or desire, we have a program now dedicated to providing them to any who demand it.

Food?  We have a program for that.  Medicine?  We have a program for that.  Contraceptives?  We have a program for that too.  Even if you want Internet access, or cellular communications, somewhere in America, under the auspices of some governmental hand-out, we have a program somewhere to suit your demands.  If you need a grant to start a “Green energy” project, we have a program for that too.  We can offer you millions if you wish to produce fuel from corn.  Do you need to advertise your products overseas?  We have a program fit to your purposes.  Education? Got it!  Housing? BINGO!  Do you want a tax break for converting your land into a nature preserve?  We have that nestled somewhere in legislation as well.  There is no limit to the imagination of politicians as to what they might at any moment convert into a so-called “public good,” which in economic terms means something that the free market cannot easily provide to all who want or need it at a price they are all able to pay.  The theory goes that government must then intervene to make sure there is equitable distribution in sufficient quantities to meet the demand, or at least subsidize its payment.

Guess who gets the bill?  You may assume you already know the answer, but do you?  I don’t think most people realize the full scope quite yet. It is true that if you pay taxes into this creature, but take none of the loot, you are among those who have a glimpse of its full unreality.  Multiply this by decades, forged of the servitude of your life stretching out before you, unto death, and spread like a virulent rash to your children and then theirs, in each day and in every moment, grabbing a little more of the life that should have been yours to live, and then theirs, and so on.  I noted with dismay that in the tax return of Newt Gingrich, nearly one-million dollars on just more than three-million dollars earnings had been wrested from him, constituting some 32% of his earnings in that year.  I complain about the total bite the federal government exacts from me, and yet it pales in comparison.  I wish to know in the name of justice why it is that people who earn so much have so much taken.

I wonder how many jobs he might have created with the additional million dollars, or the investments he might have made that would have birthed jobs in the enterprise of another. Most of all, I wonder how that money was squandered in payments to people who ought to have done for themselves that which he and those like him are compelled to provide at gunpoint.  Don’t misunderstand me, as I doubt Mr. Gingrich is suffering, but that’s hardly the point as I consider the scale of the problem.  We have millions upon millions for whom reality has been excised from their lives, allegedly as a matter of “compassion” or “humanity,” but I contend to you that those who live in perpetuity by the exertions of others deserve no compassion, because they do not themselves exhibit humanity.  To be human is to think, and to think is to recognize reality and integrate that knowledge into the consideration of all the choices with which one is confronted.  Only a primitive brute goes through life grasping and grabbing and looting, and yet this is the picture of humanity with which we are scolded.

Each is told that his or her needs is a legitimate claim on the lives and labors of others, and this is an unreality of the very worst sort, and it is at the root of the immorality driving our national decline.  There are those who will claim that “we must have safety nets, for those who cannot,” but I tell you that no such obligation exists except by the willful choice of each individual, but never through the coercive, forceful arm of the government in the name of the public.  Friday, giving a campaign speech, Barack Obama insisted he should pay more in taxes.  Let me ask you: What prohibits it?  Can he not send a check as a donation to the US Treasury?  You see, the truth is that he is not satisfied that he should give to the causes he holds dear, but that you must also.  It is not good enough that an action that should be a function reserved to private charity be left to the vagaries of human choice.  No, you must be compelled.  In this way, you cannot decline to support the un-rehabilitated drug  user, and you may not regard each case on its merits, but instead will be compelled to treat them all as being of equal value, and equal need, irrespective of fact.

This unreality, that the statists name “compassion” is merely a substitute for another word, which when viewed through the lens of those who must provide it can only be “slavery.”  We are now a nation of slaves and slavers, and the truly ingenious expression of this has been the development of a growing class who are both.  It is impossible for our nation to persist in this fashion, and the culmination of a century of social unreality that exceeds the scrupulous adherence to physical reality that has permitted our technological advancements.  It is becoming so thorough that soon, our social unreality will overrun our technological respect for nature’s realities that we will begin to regress.  In truth, this is the secret of so-called “progressivism,” inasmuch as it is not progression but regression by any measure.

Only a fool holds that one can live without effort, or exist interminably by the efforts of others, and yet this is precisely the stated object of the so-called “progressives,” and it is the unreality that they must peddle.  We are now coming to it, in a time when unreality will crash into reality.  We will be faced with many choices when this occurs, and the problem is that in crisis, mankind has a terrible history of reacting against reality’s bite with even more egregious unreality. What shall we do?  Is this to be the last generation of Americans, as that term had come to mean barely more than a century ago, or is this the time when Americans will reach for reality, and demand a respect for it among men and governments?  Time will tell, and yet I know it seems to run ever against us, but still I wonder in the end: Mustn’t we yield to reality, one way or the other?  I think so, and I suspect this will be a rude awakening through which the fragile among us may not long endure.

On the Issues That Matter Most to You

Monday, October 17th, 2011

How Nearly All of You See Government

As a follow-up to my post Boiling It Down, This Is What You’ve Said, where we discussed first principles, it’s now time for we conservatives to talk about the particular issues on which we agree.  I notice that there is a fairly libertarian streak in most of what you’ve offered, which suits me just fine.  Let’s see what sense we can make of all of this. One of the things you’ve told me in various forms is that you want a platform of issues that are positive actions, rather than a bill of all the things against which you stand.  It’s true that there are certain things against which we must all align, but the truth is that most of you would rather see issues in which we are for something, rather than merely against something, which seems to be the reactive role into which Conservatives are all too frequently shoe-horned.

You are for a massive overhaul of the tax-code, in part by repeal of the 16th amendment, and by then instituting some other form of tax with some specific limits enshrined in the constitution.  I don’t think any person who responded expressed any sort of support for our current tax code or system.  Many of you referenced the gargantuan compliance costs for the entire economy that ultimately produce no net wealth.

You are for a balanced budget amendment that will severely curtail the run-away spending of government, with no recourse to additional taxes, but instead to some form of line item veto.  A line-item veto amendment was popular.

You are for the national defense, but not wastefully so, in either men or material, and you are for defending our few actual allies around the globe.

You are all some flavor of pro-life, those of you who mentioned the abortion issue, although there were some differences on any exceptions.

You are for a return to strict constitutional adherence.

There is a half-page of agencies and departments of the federal government you would like to see eliminated.  Those that showed up most frequently in your comments and emails are: Department of Education, EPA, and Department of Energy. Let’s call them the three E’s of disaster, because nearly all of you wanted these three gone, at a minimum.

Virtually all of you wish to see the repeal of Obamacare, with the only replacement being what I would term a de-regulation of health insurers so that they can compete across state lines, among other things.

You want the borders secured, and most of you have no sympathy with the notion that “we can’t deport 12-20 million people.”  Your idea seems to be that while we won’t do so in one day, or even one year, we need to take away the reasons illegals come to the US by instituting a uniform set of rules with respect to benefits and employment. You also want the practice of “sanctuary cities” specifically banned and all federal grants to cities which adopt that policy denied.

You want the government out of medicine except perhaps for veterans, and there is some variation on Medicare.  What you seem to want most in the medical care arena is government to take its nose out of it.

You have varying opinions on social security, although there seems to be a sentiment if not universally held, than held by a clear majority of opinion that the program is fatally flawed, probably unconstitutional by a strict yardstick, and certainly in need of overhaul. At least two people suggested that while they believe the program to be unconstitutional, they suggested amending the constitution to include it long enough to phase it out over twenty years.  Some of you actually said you’d be willing to do without it in the future if you could stop paying into it now.

There were a number of differing opinions on issues like gay marriage, and assisted suicide and such things,  but all in all, the bulk of the comments and suggestions were in relative agreement on most issues.

Of those who spoke of foreign policy, almost all of you wanted a radically reduced American role in any sort of global alliances like the UN.  From there, proposals differed radically, but one thing surfaced repeatedly: You want the United States to continue its support of Israel, with only one exception.

There was near unanimous support for term limits, although ideas on how long varied.  I saw a suggestion for a maximum of six terms in the House, two terms in the Senate, while leaving the President as is.  There was one that suggested nobody needed to serve more than a single term as President.  There was one that I found interesting suggesting that we should have a total of twenty years federal service for elected officials, but that the presidential term limit still ought to apply.  The idea was to discouraged lengthy federal careers, giving the edge to people from the states to move up.  More than one of you suggested that staff be term-limited just like the officials under which they serve.  It was a mixed bag of ideas from very sedate and practical to much more radical and creative.

Speaking of ‘radical ideas,’ the number of you who thought it would be a good idea to reform the Federal Reserve system, or abolish it outright was rather high.  I always knew that conservatives never really liked the Federal Reserve, but I figured this to be mostly a libertarian position.  Apparently, that’s not at all the case. You want a stable currency with a stable store of value providing its backing.

Most of you wanted the bulk of the welfare state eliminated, particularly for able-bodied people.  You wanted strict lifetime limits. You wanted to see cash and cash-like subsidies replaced with food allotments to discourage widespread fraud. Three of you expressly called for a requirement to establish paternity of any child for whom support would be claimed.

You wanted work and savings and thrift to pay.  Four of you suggested eliminating the minimum wage outright, citing its negative effects on total employment and inflation.

Most of you thought our energy policy is a joke.  You think the government is discouraging rational energy ideas while subsidizing what some of you called boondoggles(“green energy” and ethanol subsidies) and others among you called corporate welfare.

There were a few other things you expressed.  Most of you were in favor of harsh punishments for corruption. Almost all of you favored a federal death penalty, those who mentioned it. Anybody who mentioned “affirmative action” did so in the negative.

There were various opinions on drug legalization, some strongly against, and a couple strongly in favor.

Everybody was angry about debt growth and deficit spending.

That’s covering a lot of ground, and I hope you’ll help me with the next step in this.  What I’d like to do is get your help in prioritizing these things.  So, here’s what you can do:  Select your top five, in order of importance, and if you think there’s something not mentioned here that must be mentioned, make  it number six on your list, and I will add it for the second round.

I think this gives us a good toe-hold on this cliff, but it’s a long and treacherous climb ahead.  I expect there will be disagreements, but the general sentiments expressed suggested to me that you’re mostly willing to work around some issues in favor of your most important priorities.  Much of what you’ve offered comports well with what I’ve seen of Tea Party doctrine, insofar as I know it, and you all seem willing to give this a go.  I want to thank all the respondents who filled my inbox, and submitted comments.

Submit your new lists with the subject line [Priorities] to markamerica@embarqmail.com

Thank you!

Boiling It Down, This Is What You’ve Said

Saturday, October 15th, 2011

The Hard Work Has Been Done

I’ve gathered together all the material and information so many of you have sent me these last few days, in response to my article Note to the GOP Establishment: Forget It!   I first wish to thank you all for your contributions, as they were from a diversity of sources and yet they all seemed to abide by a set of principles that I believe we can distill down to just a few things.  One of the recurrent themes was that we must adhere to our Constitution, and that we must bear in mind the reasons for our founding as expressed in our Declaration of Independence.  One of you actually submitted the Declaration and said: “Here, it’s all right here.”  Indeed, much of it is, but I think in order to carry our nation forward, and up out of its current morass, we must make clear what it had meant.

Let us begin, again, with our Declaration of Independence:

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

Our founders were breaking away from the King, and they were laying out their justifications.  They were making a case that we must not ignore, because in many ways, it has become our case too, although there is no official monarchy now oppressing us.  Here, they told us something critically important, and I want my readers to pay special heed to it, because we will revisit these concepts repeatedly:

…the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them…

I should very much like to drill down on this for a moment, in reflection on its explicit meaning, but also its implicit reasoning.  “Separate and equal station” means the rights of all men as equals under the law.  Which law?  The “laws of Nature and Nature’s God.”  What does this mean to us, now?  It means that our rights are not a gift from the State, but arise from our nature.  It also tells us something else: The founders wanted posterity to understand that irrespective of the particulars of a particular faith, or of a lack thereof, we must acknowledge that all people possess these rights because nature demands it, and if you hold God to be the great author of Nature, then you must admit that these natural rights are those of all mankind.  In other words, it really doesn’t matter if you believe in God, or not, or which version of God, with respect to various religions, because Nature’s laws lay out what are the rights of people, so that if you believe in a God that created the heavens and the Earth, He also created the laws of nature.  Even if you do not believe in a God Almighty, still you must respect the laws of nature.  In this way, the great mind who wrote this document was already laying the groundwork for our nation’s eventual basis in fundamental rights in a way that its people could universally agree, irrespective of the particulars of their individual and very diverse faiths.

We may argue yet what are Nature’s Law, but this much we can be certain:  All people must observe and ultimately obey it.  Since governments are merely fictional entities created by mankind, they too must obey.   No government can be permitted special dispensations to ignore Nature’s Law, just as no individual may ultimately ignore it.  This is a great basis for law, since it represents the most objective basis upon which mankind can derive a governing philosophy.  In their day, the founding fathers and the framers of our Constitution were called “liberals.”  This is because they believed in liberalizing governance, and freeing individual men to pursue their own rational self-interests with minimal interference from other men.   Let me suggest to you that before we go any farther down this road, we must understand these labels, how their meanings have changed over time, and how we must recapture the language that has been stolen from us.

In the days of our revolution, the “conservatives” were those who did not wish to break free of England and its monarchy.  They were adherents of statism, since monarchy is merely another manifestation of the state’s supremacy over individuals.   In the very early 20th century, this went through an odd transformation, in that those who were mere “progressives” grabbed the label for their own use.  They were in fact a sort of counter-revolution, inasmuch as their policy ideas were intended to undo much of what our founders had put in place.  In a burst of Amendments, we got the 16th, establishing the statists’ income tax, the 17th, making the election of Senators by direct majority of the people of the states, thereby silencing the States in the federal government, the 18th, making alcohol illegal(Prohibition,) and the 19th finally giving women the right to vote anywhere in the US where it had been denied to them previously.

For fourteen years, the nation suffered under the idiocy of the 18th Amendment, until it was repealed in 1933 by the 20th.  Two of the other three Amendments of the period were equally awful, those being the 16th and 17th, both put into place in 1913 during the Wilson administration’s first year.  These two Amendments have done more damage to our nation than any others, even prohibition.  The people who put those in place, and carried us into WWI were “progressives,” who were in both parties, but predominately the Democrats, and who were intent upon reversing the ethos of natural law upon which our government had been built.  It was after their ideas became known that they beat a hasty escape to the label they appropriated for themselves: “Liberals.”  It was at this time that conservatism as we now know it was truly born.  Understand with care and attention to detail: Today’s conservatives are the founders’ era’s liberals, and what we today call “Liberals” are in fact nothing but statists, particularly of the leftist persuasion, but nevertheless interested in the supremacy of the state over individual men.

This is a long way of getting  back to our discussion, but it needs to be firmly understood:  We believe in the supremacy of individual rights over the authority of  state.  Our founders were exceedingly careful to build a small sphere of authority in which government could, under specific conditions, temporarily ignore the individual rights of people, but these were remarkably limited.  Several of you have gone to some lengths to remind me precisely how limited, most frequently in the context of Obamacare, but also with respect to other programs and actions of the federal government. Let us then remember that individual liberties are the cornerstone of our Republic, without which it will fall. Let us now consider the preamble of the Declaration of Independence carefully:

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.”

Here, the founders through Jefferson’s mighty pen specified that the aforementioned natural rights are unalienable, and that they were numerous.  “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness” is a phrase with which we ought all be familiar, but its meaning is lost on many who mouth the words not knowing their full meaning.  “Life” seems clear enough, and by “Liberty” they meant a variety of things, but remembering the times, they meant even so basic a notion as the concept of Habeus corpus, that people would not be held indefinitely without charges or trial.  Their view of liberty was broad.  “Pursuit of Happiness” has been a phrase of some controversy because the inevitable tyrannical minds wish to reduce its meaning, but we can learn much if we understand that this phrase had been “Life, Liberty and Property,” but that property alone had been deemed too narrow a concept.  This phrase was chosen not to exclude property rights as some statists will argue, but instead to augment those rights with a good deal more.  It was in recognition that men may find happiness in property, but in all manner of things to which they ought properly have a right. Now consider what they told us of the relationship of people to their government:

“That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed”

This is very important as a basic tenet of our form of government. Government exists not to rule over Men, but merely to secure their rights.  This means that government is to be strictly limited to the role of a policeman, a judge, a prison warden, and a military force.  This is what they were explaining to the King who ruled over them, together with the parliament.  Government does not exist to fund the ambitions or benevolence of some men at the expense of all others.  Having told us the proper function of government, they then tell us what gives cause to changing it:

“That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.”

Ask yourself:  Has our current form of government become destructive of these ends?  In my view, it is plain to see that it is not the explicit form of our government that has become destructive, but all the incessant adulterations of that form that have been implemented over the last century. In point of fact, the framers of the Constitution would ultimately build a framework in which we could abolish most of any given current government in a single election, for in every fourth year, we can elect a President, all of the House of Representatives, and approximately one-third of the Senate.  The courts and the other departments are institutionally more immune, but nevertheless, we can abolish the corruptions of our system through the electoral process in no more than six years. The founders made clear the great struggle it is to abolish a bad form of government, and carefully explained the reasons why changing form should never be undertaken lightly:

“Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.”

This is a warning, and one we also should heed, because even now, their are elements within our country agitating to change our form of government in large part for complaints arising from ideas, notions, and practices that are not rightly part of our form of government.  I have read a lot of material from you, my readers, submitted and thoughtfully offered, and what all of them seem to have in common is the notion that our Constitution, if strictly observed, with the Declaration of Independence providing its purpose, really is the answer to our problems.  We don’t need a new form of government, but only to adhere to and practice the one we had been gifted, until the statists wrapped their dictatorial hands about its throat roughly a century ago.

Let us then start from this place, and resolve that we still hold these truths as self-evident:

  • That government must adhere to the Laws of Nature and Nature’s God
  • That government must serve its people through the guarantee of their rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness
  • That we believe in the supremacy of individual rights over the authority of  state
  • That Governments do not properly exist to fund the ambitions or benevolence of some men at the expense of all others
  • That our form of government ought only be changed after all efforts to repair it have been expended

We will surely expand upon these, and I will continue this series as time permits.  Sadly, it is true that we are running out of time to restore our Republic, but if we are to do so, I believe we must begin with our fundamentals, so that we know that affirmative idea for which we struggle.  Than you to all the many contributors, and even the many who sent an email stating “Interested.”  Even as I finish this more material is coming in.  I’d ask those of you who haven’t read them to consider two articles I’ve previously written as a primer for where we next take this discussion:

If our government is to be in the business of protecting our rights, we ought to know what is or isn’t a right.  If we’re going to restore our form of government, we ought to know what that form had been intended to be.