“Bad men cannot make good citizens. It is when a people forget God that tyrants forge their chains. A vitiated state of morals, a corrupted public conscience, is incompatible with freedom. No free government, or the blessings of liberty, can be preserved to any people but by a firm adherence to justice, moderation, temperance, frugality, and virtue; and by a frequent recurrence to fundamental principles.” ~Patrick Henry
America finds itself in a very precarious position. We have gone from the envy of the world in industrial might, education and freedom, to a country that is so far past broke, ever becoming solvent again is a pipe dream; a nation that exports more jobs than goods and an increasing rate of personal slavery unknown on this planet since several governments in Europe decided totalitarianism was the way to go early in the last century.
This enslaved populace is either held hostage through the process called entitlements, which creates slaves waiting for sustenance from their masters, or those oppressed by a confiscatory tax scheme and freedom smothering regulations from politicians and bureaucrats. While one class of the oppressed are fed by the other class of slaves, only those who supervise the slavery prosper.
The common denominator throughout our country’s fall from grace has been the domination of the two-party system. Both democrats and republicans have contributed mightily to our present financial morass and tyrannical, oppressive government. Looking to either of these parties as solutions to our predicament is analogous to hiring Bernie Madoff to run your local bank, or electing Al Capone sheriff. Justifying what the current set of criminals are doing by pointing to what previous criminals have done is intellectual madness. Blaming the other political party for our problems, while ignoring similar crimes by our chosen party, is hypocrisy squared. Explaining away crimes of the Obama administration by pointing to crimes of the Bush administration as justification, only leads to acceptance of the crimes of both under the false pretext of balancing the scales.
Allegiance to party over country is destroying freedom; financial and personal. George Washington warned us of this possibility in 1796 in his Farewell Address. Washington sought to explain his purpose for his admonitions to the people by saying: “…These will be offered to you with the more freedom, as you can only see in them the disinterested warnings of a parting friend, who can possibly have no personal motive to bias his counsel.”
Washington, in his foresight, was able to see the elements of destruction of the country by those who would place their own personal political and financial aspirations above the health and vibrancy of their fellow citizens. Washington would refer to such people who would bind themselves together to “disturb the union,” as factions or parties.
“It is, indeed, little else than a name, where the government is too feeble to withstand the enterprises of faction, to confine each member of the society within the limits prescribed by the laws, and to maintain all in the secure and tranquil enjoyment of the rights of person and property.
I have already intimated to you the danger of parties in the State, with particular reference to the founding of them on geographical discriminations. Let me now take a more comprehensive view, and warn you in the most solemn manner against the baneful effects of the spirit of party generally.
This spirit, unfortunately, is inseparable from our nature, having its root in the strongest passions of the human mind. It exists under different shapes in all governments, more or less stifled, controlled, or repressed; but, in those of the popular form, it is seen in its greatest rankness, and is truly their worst enemy.
The alternate domination of one faction over another, sharpened by the spirit of revenge, natural to party dissension, which in different ages and countries has perpetrated the most horrid enormities, is itself a frightful despotism. But this leads at length to a more formal and permanent despotism. The disorders and miseries which result gradually incline the minds of men to seek security and repose in the absolute power of an individual; and sooner or later the chief of some prevailing faction, more able or more fortunate than his competitors, turns this disposition to the purposes of his own elevation, on the ruins of public liberty.
Without looking forward to an extremity of this kind (which nevertheless ought not to be entirely out of sight), the common and continual mischiefs of the spirit of party are sufficient to make it the interest and duty of a wise people to discourage and restrain it.”
Washington, in his wisdom, also saw how political parties could also lead to foreign influence in our government. To say this does not now exist is to ignore the obvious. He also envisioned how political parties would “distract” and “enfeeble” the government and created jealousies and pit citizens against citizens, caring more for party affiliation than for what was best for the country.
“It serves always to distract the public councils and enfeeble the public administration. It agitates the community with ill-founded jealousies and false alarms, kindles the animosity of one part against another, foments occasionally riot and insurrection. It opens the door to foreign influence and corruption, which finds a facilitated access to the government itself through the channels of party passions. Thus the policy and the will of one country are subjected to the policy and will of another.”
It is time we followed Washington’s sage advice and look to what a political candidate brings to the table as regards working for all in their realm of jurisdiction, rather than whether they have an “R” or “D” before their names.
We have witnessed in our county and in our state, as well as in our country, how political parties and the leaders of those parties (factions) seek individual power and control over others, including those who seek/hold political office. To say that a qualified individual could secure political office in this country without being vetted by party officials is preposterous. When this happens, party officials hold the trump card over who “we the people” have to choose from when it comes to those who govern. This takes power from the many and gives it to the few; a proposition that was unacceptable to George Washington.
It should also be unacceptable to those who truly cherish Liberty. Forget political parties and think first of your Liberty and your country, especially when you look at those who seek political office in the future.
Sgt Major Mike Gaddy – Teaching classes about the Constitution in the South-West Corner of the state. Please let us know if you would like to attend!