“Those who cannot remember the past, are condemned to repeat it.”
~George Santayana ~
The fact that some people in this country, a majority actually, care so little about the history of the country they live in continues to boggle my mind. Since America declared its independence 244 years have passed. A lot has happened since then; a constitution was written abolishing our old system of government, a Civil War was fought, as well as two World Wars, and we went through a Great Depression.
Do you honestly think you can learn all there is to learn about that lengthy a period of history by studying a textbook that is probably no thicker than your local Yellow Pages? Forgive me, some of you don’t even know what the Yellow Pages are; they were before the age when you could find a phone number by asking your smart phone.
The point I’m trying to make is that what you were taught in school, even assuming it is accurate, thorough, and truthful, (which more often than not is not the case), there is simply no way you can be taught all there is to learn about 244 years of history in a single year of study. To prove my point I took all the data I have collected regarding the drafting and ratification of our constitution and I piled it into a neat stack. I then measured it with a tape measure. Do you want to know how thick it was? It was nearly 6 inches thick…and that’s just the period beginning in 1787 and ending in 1789.
That’s just the data I myself have collected regarding the drafting and ratification of our constitution; which is far from being all that could be studied; the information I have regarding the Civil War is most likely twice that thick if put into a pile.
Most, if not all of that data is not history books written by people expressing their opinions on a particular period of our country’s history; they are source documents – speeches, notes taken during conventions, or the personal writings of those who participated in the events. You see, that is where you find the truth, not in some history book written two-hundred years after the event took place.
You see, history books are written by people, and people have biases. I’m not saying that history books always lie, or provide false information; but they often do what is called lying by omission. For instance, the Civil War did end up leading to the abolition of slavery; but that is not the reason it was fought; far from it. If the threat of losing their slaves was what the South was fighting for, why didn’t they just stay in the Union, and ratify the proposed Corwin Amendment; which would have made slavery a permanent institution in the United States. Google it if you don’t trust me to tell you the truth.
If the end of slavery was what the Union was fighting for, why did Abraham Lincoln say, “I would save the Union. I would save it the shortest way under the Constitution. The sooner the national authority can be restored; the nearer the Union will be “the Union as it was.” If there be those who would not save the Union, unless they could at the same time save slavery, I do not agree with them. If there be those who would not save the Union unless they could at the same time destroy slavery, I do not agree with them. My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and is not either to save or to destroy slavery.” (Source: Lincoln’s letter to Horace Greeley, August 22, 1862)
Those are historical facts, you can ignore them and continue to believe whatever you have been indoctrinated into believing but you can’t deny their validity or accuracy as to the events that transpired between the years 1860 to 1865. As John Adams said in his defense of 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.”
When I discuss politics, government, or history with most people I find that the things they say often reflect what they hear on the news, or coming from the lips of some so-called expert; like Chuck Dodd, who hosts NBC’s Meet the Press. I often hear people talk about how great our democracy is, or how bad it is, depending upon whom I’m speaking with. Yet try telling them that our system of government was not designed to be a democracy and they look at you as if you’ve lost your mind. Yet a simple Google search would prove that our system was supposedly designed to form a Republic, not a democracy; and that’s assuming that people could accurately explain the difference between the two systems.
People today fail to realize that their system of government has limits imposed upon its powers; limits which both it, and the people who elect these criminals to office, have ignored. People think that the Constitution was written and adopted by the people, yet it was a small group of people, representing a certain class of society, who both wrote it and ratified it. Had you or I lived in 1787 we wouldn’t have stood a snowball’s chance in hell of attending the Constitutional Convention or any of the State Ratifying Assemblies; we’re just peasants who don’t fall into the category of people the Constitution was written to benefit.
All one has to do, and again that’s assuming they are so inclined, is to study the notes taken during the convention which produced the Constitution, the arguments leveled both in support of and in opposition to it, and the notes from the State Ratifying Conventions and you’ll see that there were conflicting beliefs as to whether or not the proposed system would establish a system of government that would secure to the States their rights, and protect and defend our liberty as individuals. But like I said, that’s a six inch thick pile of documents; much of which is written by people whose education far exceeds that which is provided at the hands of our public school system today.
So far all I’ve talked about is the history of this country, yet many of those we call founders were quite knowledgeable about world history; the wars and various systems of government that had existed dating back centuries. They could write, or speak, in great detail regarding the benefits of certain systems of government, and the flaws in others. They could also tell you what type of governments had led to a gradual erosion of the public liberty, and which had best served to secure liberty for the people they governed.
How does any of that apply to what’s happening in America today? Well, it’s quite simple actually. If you don’t know how our current system of government came into being; what those who opposed it feared would happen should this system be adopted; what specific powers were promised this government would exercise on behalf of the people, then that government gets to determine for itself what the limits to its own powers shall be.
In 1798 Thomas Jefferson wrote a document explaining how that is not how our system was designed. In that document Jefferson states, “…the government created by this compact [the Constitution for the United States] was not made the exclusive or final judge of the extent of the powers delegated to itself; since that would have made its discretion, and not the Constitution, the measure of its powers; . . . . that this would be to surrender the form of government we have chosen, and live under one deriving its powers from its own will, and not from our authority…” (Source: Kentucky Resolutions)
I’d be willing to bet a substantial sum of money that if our current system of government began exercising only that power which it had held prior to the Great Depression, (even though by then it had already amassed more power than was originally delegated to it), the people of this country could not handle it; they would wonder where all the government programs and benefits went. Yet since that time in our history our government has exponentially increased its power, and restricted our liberty to the point where it is almost non-existent.
If you don’t believe me, just ask yourself if you would vote for a candidate for president who ran on the campaign promise of, “,,,a wise and frugal Government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another, shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government…” or, “The worst lesson that can be taught to a man is to rely upon others and whine over his sufferings. If an American is to amount to anything he must rely upon himself, and not upon the State; he must take pride in his own work, instead of sitting idle to envy the luck of others. He must face life with resolute courage, win victory if he can, and accept defeat if he must, without seeking to place on his fellow man a responsibility which is not theirs.”
That first quote is taken from Thomas Jefferson’s Inaugural Address in 1801, and after 4 years of a Jefferson presidency he was proud to say, “At home, fellow-citizens, you best know whether we have done well or ill. The suppression of unnecessary offices, of useless establishments and expenses, enabled us to discontinue our internal taxes. These, covering our land with officers and opening our doors to their intrusions, had already begun that process of domiciliary vexation which once entered is scarcely to be restrained from reaching successively every article of property and produce. … it may be the pleasure and the pride of an American to ask, What farmer, what mechanic, what laborer ever sees a taxgatherer of the United States?”
The other quote comes from Theodore Roosevelt, who served as president almost 100 years after Jefferson died in 1826. Can you imagine any candidate for office today saying something like that; how many votes do you think they’d get…would YOU vote for them? I certainly would; and that right there is the underlying cause of all the problems in America today; what YOU expect out of government.
As I write this a vast number of those inhabiting this once great country are running around in a state of panic over the spread of this Covid virus. I’m not saying that any death due to this virus, or any virus for that matter, is not a tragedy, but I am saying that the extreme paranoia and fear this Covid virus has led to is causing people to act like a bunch of idiots.
So far there have been almost 64,000 deaths in the U.S. due to the Covid virus. Yet according to statistics found at the Centers for Disease Control, last year 840,768 people died of heart attacks in the U.S.; which means that so far the number of deaths due to this Covid virus only amount to 7.5% of the total number of people who died from heart attacks last year…yet we’re acting like it’s the end of the world for crying out loud.
There is a graphic that has been floating around the internet since these draconian steps have been imposed upon us to prevent the spread of the Covid virus that states something like, “When I studied the Holocaust in school I could never understand how Hitler got all those people to willingly board those trains that led them to the concentration camps. Now I look around and I understand how easy it was.”
It doesn’t really matter if we are discussing the Covid virus, if it is a mass shooting, or if it is the threat of a terrorist attack; people live their lives in a constant state of fear, and are willing to sacrifice almost anything to be provided with some semblance of safety and security. Not only that, the people have been so indoctrinated that they believe they don’t have the authority to question the edicts and orders of those in positions of authority.
Therefore, when you combine fear and panic with blind obedience, you end up with a populace who will surrender to almost anything; simply because they are told it is in their best interests, or because they are too afraid to stand up to those in office, or those wearing a badge who enforce the laws enacted by those in office. What you end up with are sheep; who are herded around by government and law enforcement, and whose truth is spoon fed to them by the propaganda arm of the owners of the slave farm, the network news media.
Going way back to before our current system of government was put into operation, Patrick Henry did all he could to oppose the adoption of the Constitution. In one of his speeches to the Virginia Ratifying Assembly Henry said, “Liberty, the greatest of all earthly blessings-give us that precious jewel, and you may take every thing else.” My God, that’s only 18 words; it can’t be that difficult to understand!
Liberty was of such importance to Patrick Henry that just 13 years prior he stirred the hearts of his fellow Virginians towards independence with the following words, “Give me liberty or give me death!” He did not say give me social security; give me social distancing; give me this, or give me that. All Henry wanted was for government to leave him be; to not restrict or infringe upon his right to live his life according to his own dictates. What have we surrendered due to our fears?
-Our freedom of speech has been severely limited because some people find the truth offensive.
-Our freedom to worship has been limited because others find our beliefs offensive; and now we can’t even attend services without fear of being arrested for violating stay at home orders.
-Our right to own guns, and use them for our own personal defense and in defense of our liberty is slowly being taken away from us by cowards and tyrants.
-Our right to freely travel and associate with others is being restricted now; and once this virus ends you can almost bet that it will not be restored to the same degree prior to the outbreak of Covid.
-Our right to work, to own a business, to provide a living for ourselves and our families; not to mention provide the same right to those we might employ, has been denied us because we’re scared of catching a cold.
-Our right to privacy is all but gone, as the government watches, listens to, and tracks our every move. Our phone conversations are captured and recorded; the same is done to our internet messages; cameras and facial recognition systems record our movement outside our homes, drones fly overhead watching our movements, and our phones let government know our exact location 24 hours a day.
This Covid virus, while it is taking the lives of people who ordinarily would not have died, is a psychological operation, the magnitude of which you may never see again. The damage being inflicted both to our economy and your liberty is inestimable; and the aftereffects have yet to be felt.
The first wave of panic this Covid scare induced came when people flocked to the stores to prepare themselves for an extended period of self isolation, and saw people buying up toilet paper, bottled water, hand sanitizer, and vitamin C. The next wave will come when the shelves start running out again due to the fact that producers are not being allowed to manufacturer the items we take for granted.
What are you going to do when you make your weekly grocery run and the shelves are all but empty; and they’ll be no restocking them in the immediate future? What are you going to spend your $1200 stimulus check upon when there is nothing to buy? Who are you going to turn to when your belly is rumbling because your cupboard is bare and WalMart is out of food to sell? I’m not saying IT IS gonna get that bad, but I’m not saying it won’t either; although I’m leaning more towards the belief that things are going to get ugly real quick here in the land of the free.
All of this could have been avoided if people had not let fear dominate their life; if they’d exercised a little bit of logic, a little bit of critical thinking, and had a decent understanding of both U.S. and World History; for this isn’t the first time a country has seen its people faced with starvation due to governmental policies.
One would do well to research the period of history between the years of 1932-33 in Soviet controlled Ukraine known as HOLODOMOR. Restrictions of population movement and the production and distribution of food was curtailed by the government too, and it led to the deaths of anywhere between 3 to 12 million Ukrainians; depending upon whose numbers you go by.
Whether what we are about to witness in America is intentional, or simply due to the ineptitude of those we elect to office is beside the point. The point is, hard times are coming, and it all could have been avoided had the people been educated well, or if they’d had the motivation to educate themselves beyond the lies and half-truths they were taught in school.
But no, football, Reality TV, Candy Crush Saga, and a whole host of other forms of entertainment kept you from focusing your attention upon what really matters; and the time to pay the piper is quickly approaching. I think it was the poet Juvenal who said it best, “Give them bread and circuses and they’ll never revolt.”
You just watch, if things really do go south; if the stores run out of food and people are starving, the masses will still look to those who caused this mess to save them, and they will still criticize those of us who tried to warn them, and who knew a day like this was coming and took certain measures to prepare for it. I truly hope that I’ll be proven wrong about this, but in case it does go down that way, at least I can say that I tried warning people.
It’s all happening because you weren’t taught your history, and you didn’t care enough to learn it on your own; which is why I began this with that quote from Santayana, “Those who cannot remember the past, are condemned to repeat it.” Well get ready folks, you’re about to participate in history in the making. I just hope your grandchildren weren’t as oblivious to the lessons history can teach as you have been.