There is a quote that has been attributed to the 18th Century Scottish Judge, Alexander Fraser Tytler, which states the progression which all great nations and empires undergo, “The people go from bondage to spiritual truth, to great courage, from courage to liberty, from liberty to abundance, from abundance to selfishness, from selfishness to complacency, from complacency to apathy, from apathy to dependence, from dependence back again to bondage.” While there is some doubt that Tytler himself actually said that, it really doesn’t make much difference; somebody did, otherwise I would be finding references to it all over the internet.
Now if you were to apply that timeline, or progression, to America herself, you might find that it is pretty darned accurate. America began as 13 Colonies under the will and authority of whoever wore the Crown in Great Britain. While being a subject is not as bad as being a slave, it is still a form of bondage that binds you to the will of another.
Then our Founders underwent a change of sorts where they found a form of spiritual truths; that all political power is held by the people, and that government should be introduced to safeguard their rights. This led them to exhibit great courage; for it was no little matter for them to declare to their King that they would no longer be subject to his will. Nonetheless, when the 56 signers of the Declaration of Independence placed their signatures on that document, they did so pledging their Lives, Fortunes and Sacred Honor.
This courage led them to obtaining their independence, and the liberty that accompanied it. They were now free to decide for themselves what type government they should have, and what powers it might exercise.
The liberty that was the thing our government was established to secure for the people led America to becoming a mighty nation; a nation of abundance and wealth. But then people became selfish; they sought not to choose for leaders those who would adhere to the Constitution, but those who would provide the most benefits for them.
This led to complacency; the willingness to suffer under unjust laws so long as the benefits kept coming. Complacency led to apathy; where the people no longer care about truth or justice. Apathy, of course, led to dependence. Don’t you find it strange how people panic when there is talk of a government shutdown? Why would people panic unless they were dependent upon government for something? A free person does not need government, or any of the services it provides, to live their life in happiness.
Which leaves us with but one final step; a return to bondage; and if you ask me, I’d say we are well on our way to that already.
Well let me tell you something right here and now; I do not consent to bondage in whatever guise it may come. I am a free man and no man or group of men hold any power or authority over me unless I have expressly given that power to them; which I have not!
Getting back to Tytler for a minute, how many of you truly understand the meaning of the word complacent? Simply stated, complacency is a lack of concern for or the awareness of certain dangers. Complacency is, more often than not, brought about by an overall ignorance of the people who exhibit it.
People have this misguided, and dangerous belief that government is their master, that they must obey whatever laws it enacts simply because it is the ‘government.’ Have you ever stopped to think about the meaning of the word governed? Being governed is having power and authority imposed upon you; being controlled in your thoughts or actions. If you cannot see that being governed is at the extreme opposite end of the spectrum from freedom, then there is absolutely no hope for you and you may as well enjoy your ignorance and your servitude.
Those whom we elect to hold political office ARE NOT our masters; they are our servants. We are the true masters in this country; you, me, the guy who delivers your mail, the person who fixes you car when it breaks down, and the person who stocks the shelves at your local WalMart.
I’m guessing that you are not aware that 4 years after our Constitution went into effect the Supreme Court held, “…at the Revolution, the sovereignty devolved on the people; and they are truly the sovereigns of the country, but they are sovereigns without subjects…with none to govern but themselves; the citizens of America are equal as fellow citizens, and as joint tenants in the sovereignty.” (Source: Chisholm v. Georgia)
There’s that blasted word sovereignty again. I’m guessing that although people may think they have a rudimentary understanding of the meaning of the word sovereign, or sovereignty, they don’t fully realize the importance of it. The sovereign political authority of a nation is the supreme or absolute power from which all other power flows, or emanates.
I find it absolutely mind boggling that most people can’t grasp the simple concept that we are the sovereigns in this country, and that our government is under the obligation to obey the law which we have enacted governing their actions. I find absolutely no justification in the writings of our Founders for the belief that our government is supreme and that we must obey its will in all cases.
Are people so woefully ignorant that they cannot see that this is one of the things which led our Founders to seek their independence; that King George III and Parliament had sought to bind, by statute, the Colonists in all cases whatsoever? Can people not see that by consenting to this belief that the government is supreme and its authority absolute, they are consenting to the very belief which led our Founders to revolt?
I sometimes marvel at how people can read through documents from our nation’s history, but not allow them to form the basis of their opinions and beliefs. This belief in unquestioned submission to an arbitrary government is one of the things that have absolutely no basis in historical fact; yet people believe that to question, to resist government is unpatriotic.
Our Declaration of Independence states that government derives its authority from the consent of the people and that it is instituted to secure those rights, not annihilate them. The Preamble to our Constitution declares that it was We the People who ordained and established the Constitution.
Government did not simply will itself into existence, it came into existence when the plan for government was submitted to the people and they voted to accept the plan. Even then there were those who felt that there were insufficient safeguards for certain rights; so a Bill of Rights was added to the Constitution to protect those rights.
How is it that people can revere the Constitution as a historical document, but not care one whit that the specific Articles and Clauses found within it are violated daily by the government it establishes? How is it that the people can care so little for their rights that they allow government to enact law after law which violates them? Why is it that people submit to such tyranny without even recognizing it exists? How can it be that a people who claim to love liberty care more about sporting events and Social Media than they do about learning the true history of their country, or the principles upon which America was founded?
These are all questions that I ask myself when I see people scurrying about in their daily lives; and they are questions for which I have found no suitable answer.
If we truly are the sovereigns in this country, how is it that the minutest details of our lives are open to governmental intrusion and examination; yet they routinely classify things they do not want the public to see? If we truly are the sovereigns, how is it that those who represent us can enact law which restricts what type firearms we are allowed to keep and bear, and then turn around and give government the right to keep and bear the very arms it prohibits us from keeping and bearing?
Do you understand the meaning of the word consent; and I mean really understand it? Consent means to give permission for something. By drafting and ratifying a Constitution, we gave government permission to exist and enact laws for certain specific purposes. Our government was not one of wide reaching and unlimited authority.
In 1792, as a young member of the newly created House of Representatives, James Madison stood upon the floor and voiced the following in opposition to a bill granting bounties to Cod Fisheries, “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.” (My emphasis)
Well, I’m here to tell you that the principle of a limited government with few and defined powers has certainly been subverted! The thing is, nobody cares because nobody knows what the true powers given our government are; and even if you tell them they still don’t care.
You may not care, you may find bliss in your ignorance and your apathy, but I care and I DO NOT CONSENT to a government of unlimited authority that can restrict my rights just because the majority of the people think they should be restricted. I do not consent to having my wages taxed; just so they can be given to someone in need, or worse, given to some foreign country in the form of foreign aid. Do you hear me people; I DO NOT CONSENT!
That is why I no longer vote. You may think that by my not voting I lose all say in what our government does. Well, you’re partially correct in that I don’t care what goes on in government because I have withdrawn my consent for government itself. Were I to vote I would be tacitly giving my consent for government’s authority; which I don’t. I don’t recognize their authority because 99.9% of the things our government does exceed the powers given them by express consent of the people who established our form government back in 1789.
I may be forced to obey the laws this government enacts, but I do so under duress; and being under duress is NOT the state anyone lives in if they consider themselves free. I recognize that I am a slave, a serf, a tax paying cog in the wheel whose life and earnings are possessions of the bankers and corporate interests which have purchased the souls of those the people elect to represent them. I simply choose not to play the game of choosing which party will be my slave master. I may submit to their authority, to a certain extent, but I do not recognize their authority as being just, and I damn sure am not going to consent to it by voting.
That is also one of the reasons why I will no longer repeat the Pledge of Allegiance. I owe no allegiance to anyone but God; and certainly not to a government that has overstepped its legal authority and made a tyrannical use of the limited power originally bestowed upon it. Secondly, I refuse to pledge allegiance to the flag that was carried by the Army which sought to subjugate and subdue the people of the Confederate States of America; that last true vestige of truly constitutional government in America. I simply refuse to pledge allegiance to any symbol that represents tyranny and oppression.
If you call these things unpatriotic, I believe it is because you have no idea of what it really means to be a patriot. A patriot would NOT stand by while their rights were being taken from them. A true patriot would not vote for candidates who openly promise to do things which the Constitution forbids them from doing. A true patriot would not stand for party over principle.
You can call me whatever name you want and I will wear them as badges of honor; as I believe it is the overwhelming majority of people in this country who are the ones who are unpatriotic; for if they actually were patriots there would be elected officials hanging from lampposts across the nation for their crimes against the people and the Constitution which they all took an oath to support and defend.
Now that I’ve explained my position and views, maybe now you will understand why this quote from Samuel Adams means so much to me, “If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude greater than the animating contest for freedom, go home from us in peace. We seek not your counsel, nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you; May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen.”
Patriotism is non-partisan; it is a loyalty and attachment to the principles upon which a country was founded. Therefore, as Mark Twain said, “Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it.” Well, if you weren’t so ignorant you might see that the government you give your consent to does not deserve your support.
Then again, what do I know; I’m a danger and a radical; right? Just keep in mind the words of H.L. Mencken, “The notion that a radical is one who hates his country is naïve and usually idiotic. He is, more likely, one who likes his country more than the rest of us, and is thus more disturbed than the rest of us when he sees it debauched. He is not a bad citizen turning to crime; he is a good citizen driven to despair.”
I’m absolutely certain that, in today’s political climate, that were there 1,000 Samuel Adams and Patrick Henry’s on the internet blogging about freedom and liberty that they would be on every government watch list and that the general public would view them as radicals and terrorists too.
That ought to cause any thinking person to question their views and positions. Unfortunately for America, there aren’t many who have been taught how to think, all they have been taught is that government deserves their support and their consent.
That’s okay consent to your government if you wish; just don’t expect me to. I will never consent to bondage; and if you were a true patriot, if you truly valued freedom and liberty like you claim to, neither would you.