How many of you remember some of the past campaign slogans used by those seeking the presidency? Do you remember America Needs a Change from back in 1984? (Walter Mondale) How about something more recent; Putting People First? (Bill Clinton, 1992) I’m sure you remember Change We Can Believe In. (Barack Obama, 2008) Now we have Donald Trump in office who campaigned on the slogan, Let’s Make America Great Again.
What are these campaign slogans if they are not hooks designed to stimulate an emotional response in regards to a particular candidate? They do not tell you the first thing about what plans a particular candidate has; and it was never intended that they do. They were designed to stimulate emotional responses within each of the voters which then allows for each person’s imagination to take over and envision how good things would be under the leadership of that particular candidate.
Every voter who goes to the polls on election-day has their own preconceived ideas as they pertain to the things they believe government should do. Without being aware of it, they compare the things a candidate campaigns upon against their own mental checklist, and then vote for the candidate who gets the most positive marks on that checklist.
This would not be a bad thing except for the fact that 99.9% of the things people expect government to do for this country are NOT authorized by the very document which created our government.
I find it both funny and sad that the people’s overall response to President Trump’s actions as they pertain to immigration have taken a great deal of heat from those who oppose any type of ban on who may enter the U.S. Of all the things Trump has said he wanted to do, enforcing our immigration laws is about the only one which the Constitution actually authorizes him to do. What does that say about how little people know about the purposes for which our government was established?
Why is it that very few people have even a basic understanding of the history of this country and the purposes for which it’s system of government was instituted? Isn’t it the function of our schools to provide our children with a proper, and thorough education? How can they say that they are doing their job if they do not teach our children these things?
If James Madison is to be considered the Father of our Constitution, then Noah Webster is to be considered the Father of American Scholarship and Education. Webster’s name is synonymous with the American dictionary; as it was he who in 1828 published the American Dictionary of the English Language.
In a 1788 essay on the education of youth in America, Webster stated, “But every child in America should be acquainted with his own country. He should read books that furnish him with ideas that will be useful to him in life and practice. As soon as he opens his lips, he should rehearse the history of his own country; he should lisp the praise of liberty, and of those illustrious heroes and statesmen, who have wrought a revolution in her favor.
A selection of essays, respecting the settlement and geography of America; the history of the late revolution and of the most remarkable characters and events that distinguished it, and a compendium of the principles of the federal and provincial governments, should be the principal school book in the United States.”
When I made my way through the public indoctrination centers, (public schools), I was required to pass a year-long civics class which covered the basics of our system of government. I say the basics because I was never introduced to the writings of the Federalists and anti-Federalists, and I was never taught anything about what inspired our Founders to come up with the system of government that they did.
Fast forward 32 years to when my son graduated from high school and he was required to attend a six week segment of a civics/economics class. How much can one learn about such a vast subject in six weeks? I barely scratched the surface of all there is to learn back in a full year class in 1975, and they have reduced it to six weeks?
I have but one question for our educators: Are you intentionally trying to produce graduates who are completely ignorant in regards to the founding of this country and the establishment of its system of government?
The problem I have encountered is not only that people are ignorant in regards to these subjects, they have been conditioned to not accept any evidence of their having been lied to. The violent reactions I get in response to discussing the War of Northern Aggression, or the Civil War as most call it, is typical of how people react when confronted with facts that shoot their beliefs full of holes.
However, just because a person refuses to accept facts which contradict their beliefs does not mean that the facts themselves lose their power and authority. As John Adams said when he defended the British Soldiers accused of murder in the Boston Massacre, “Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passion, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.”
Facts remain constant throughout time; the only thing that changes is the willingness of the people to give them any consideration. It says volumes about the integrity of a people who refuse to accept any evidence that their belief systems are based upon a well designed plan to produce generations of people who have no understanding of how their system of government was designed to function.
What a difference between the people who consider themselves patriots today and those of days gone by. What a difference between Americans today who refuse to accept any evidence that their government is beyond salvage and men like Patrick Henry, who famously uttered the following, “For my part, whatever anguish of spirit it may cost, I am willing to know the whole truth; to know the worst, and to provide for it.”
One look at politics today and one who has done any studying of our system of government has to shake their head in amazement at the people of this country. A perfect example is the recent attempt by President Trump to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare. Trump supporters are disappointed that they could not get the votes to pass Trump’s plan. Democrats are overjoyed that the Republicans couldn’t overturn their president’s plan.
How many people are dismayed because the continuation of a government run health care program is not among the specific powers given government? Very few I would imagine. The same could be said about anyone attempting to repeal the law which established Social Security; it would be political suicide to even suggest repealing that law; even though it remains to this day an unconstitutional piece of legislation.
I’m not saying that if the people want government provided health care, or a government run retirement plan that they should not be allowed to have one. I am saying that it is not within the powers given the federal government to provide it for them. If they want one, then let them work to have it passed at the State level where the authority to do such things rests.
Those who were alive at the time our Constitution was written were clear on the fact that the powers given government by this Constitution were few, and limited. In 1788 James Madison wrote, “The powers delegated by the proposed Constitution to the federal government, are few and defined. Those which are to remain in the State governments are numerous and indefinite. The former will be exercised principally on external objects, as war, peace, negotiation, and foreign commerce; with which last the power of taxation will, for the most part, be connected. The powers reserved to the several States will extend to all the objects which, in the ordinary course of affairs, concern the lives, liberties, and properties of the people, and the internal order, improvement, and prosperity of the State.” (Federalist 45)
How difficult is it to read that and understand what it says? Yet there are people who can read that and not make heads or tails out of what Madison meant by those words; yet they believe they are intelligent enough to make informed decisions while voting? C’mon!!!
It is because the people do not know that the States were crucial components of our system of government that they look to the federal government for all their needs. It is because Abraham Lincoln’s war against States Rights demolished what was considered the right of the States to resist federal encroachment upon their sovereignty, and severe the tie which bound them to an oppressive system of government, that we have a nation who idolizes the man who saved the Union; but in so doing obliterated State Sovereignty.
When Thomas Jefferson served as Vice-President under John Adams, he secretly wrote the Kentucky Resolutions in opposition to President Adams signing of the Alien and Sedition Acts. In those resolutions Jefferson states, “Resolved, That the several States composing the United States of America, are not united on the principle of unlimited submission to their General Government . . . . and that whensoever the General Government assumes undelegated powers, its acts are unauthoritative, void, and of no force.”
Year later Jefferson would write to Charles Hammond, “When all government, domestic and foreign, in little as in great things, shall be drawn to Washington as the centre of all power, it will render powerless the checks provided of one government on another, and will become as venal and oppressive as the government from which we separated …”
Then, just three years later, Jefferson would write to William Giles, “I see,… and with the deepest affliction, the rapid strides with which the federal branch of our government is advancing towards the usurpation of all the rights reserved to the States, and the consolidation in itself of all powers, foreign and domestic; and that, too, by constructions which, if legitimate, leave no limits to their power…”
People today don’t even think about such things, all they think about is what their government should do for them. The term general welfare has taken a new meaning to include all their needs. Yet in 1792 James Madison vetoed a bill granting bounties, (or subsidies as we call them today) to Cod Fisheries. In his veto message Madison declared, “If Congress can employ money indefinitely to the general welfare, and are the sole and supreme judges of the general welfare, they may take the care of religion into their own hands; they may appoint teachers in every State, county and parish and pay them out of their public treasury; they may take into their own hands the education of children, establishing in like manner schools throughout the Union; they may assume the provision of the poor; they may undertake the regulation of all roads other than post-roads; in short, everything, from the highest object of state legislation down to the most minute object of police, would be thrown under the power of Congress… Were the power of Congress to be established in the latitude contended for, it would subvert the very foundations, and transmute the very nature of the limited Government established by the people of America.”
Today we have two classes of voters; those who are honest about what they want from government, and those who aren’t. On the one hand we have the Democrats; those social justice warriors who want government to be an agent that brings about equality for all. Then on the other hand we have the Republicans, masquerading as conservatives who are anything but conservative if you consider that most of what they do also violates the Constitution. At least the Democrats are not pretending to be something they aren’t!
Yet we go to the polls and elect candidates from these two parties to fill the various seats of power within our government; never stopping to think about how both parties are guilty of violating the Constitution; which by the way every candidate takes an oath to support and defend.
When are the people of this country going to realize that they hold the ultimate authority in this country, and that their elected representatives work for them and are beholden to them; not the other way around? When are we going to stand up as one and say, “ENOUGH of these unconstitutional laws. ENOUGH of your violating our rights”?
I tell you what, that will never happen as long as you continue playing the game of two party paradigm, or the lesser of two evils. By your voting, whether it be for a Republican or a Democrat, you are giving your consent to the actions of government as a whole. Nothing, and I mean NOTHING is going to change until you come to the realization that voting is not going to change a damned thing. If you want change, do as I do and withdraw your support from government entirely.
Oh, I’ll obey the laws they pass, to a certain degree to retain my freedom from incarceration; but I refuse to participate in choosing which group of criminals runs the criminal enterprise I call government.
If enough people did this, and began focusing all their energies on State sovereignty, then just maybe America would stand a chance. But as long as you continue playing a rigged game and let government trample upon the Constitution and your rights, nothing is going to change.
As I’ve said in previous articles, to quote The Who, “Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.” Or is it that we’ve all gone insane? After all, Einstein defined insanity as doing the same thing over and over again, expecting different results.
The way I see it is that you can package manure in either a blue or a red wrapper, but it won’t hide the fact that you’re still getting manure. The sooner you accept that fact the less painful will be the recovery to a fully functioning liberty minded individual. Until then, as James Madison said, “The preservation of a free government requires, not merely that the metes and bounds which separate each department of power be invariably maintained, but more especially that neither of them be suffered to overleap the great barrier which defends the rights of the people.
The rulers who are guilty of such encroachment exceed the commission from which they derive their authority, and are tyrants. The people who submit to it are governed by laws made neither by themselves nor by an authority derived from them and are slaves.”
So, are you a free man/woman or are you a slave?