Thursday, February 23, 2012

Words of Wisdom for Today

Since listening to our politicians for the last many months, I think that most could use a few gems of wisdom from America's sixteenth president, Abraham Lincoln.

"Let not him who is houseless pull down the house of another, but let him work diligently and build one for himself, thus by example assuring that his own shall be safe from violence when built."

"I remember my mother's prayers and they have always followed me. They have clung to me all my life."

"I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The great point is to bring them the real facts."

"It is better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to open one's mouth and remove all doubt."

Thanks, Honest Abe!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012


A place where members of a republic need to be ever vigilant is in the realm of education, for what goes into the heads of our young people becomes the policy of later years. And to argue that the parents have the main sway in their children's preceptions, does not hold true into the years of high school and higher education. We know that one of the chief jobs of young people is to rebel against the "old-fashioned" teachings of Mom and Dad.

Here's an example. For several decades the concept was taught in history classes that the founding fathers of this republic were severely flawed individuals with no moral character or concern for all the people who lived or would live under the flag of the United States. I remember being taught these ideas in my high school civics and history classes. At home, I was taught that the founders were wise men of conscience who worked hard to establish a set of laws that would keep fallible leaders in check and allow for amendments which could be used to correct oversights. The battle lines were drawn, and for several years I found myself bitterly opposed to any thought my parents held about this country.

Luckily, as I matured, I learned to do my own independent reading and research, and I came to know that those who founded this country were truly remarkable individuals.

Let's not be complacent. It shouldn't matter if we have children in school or not; we should know the curriculum and what's being taught whether it be history, sex education, or science. Remember, those students will grow up to be our leaders.

Note: please study the Cultural Revolution in China, and Mao Tse-tung's thoughts on education and his use of young people as Red Guards.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Good and Evil?

A government of the people, by the people, and for the people must take into account the duel inclinations of human nature. Within each person is the pull of good and evil. When enacting laws to govern a populace, these opposites of human nature must be recognized. It should also be noted that, in a Republic, since we choose men and women to represent us, we must be vigilant in assessing their leaning.

Aristotle told of this duality in the story of the white dog and the black dog.

A man came across another man walking two dogs, each on their own leash. One dog was white and the other black. Both were straining against their ropes in an attempt to be in the lead. The one man asked the dog owner, "Which one wins?" The dog owner answered, "The one I feed the most."

We should continually ask ourselves if our laws encourage the best qualities of human nature and fairly punish the meaner propensities. So too, we should be watching our elected leaders to see which dog is in the lead.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Natural Law

Within the Declaration of Independence are these words, "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."

Natural law means laws that govern men that are God given, not man given. As stated by Sir William Blackstone in his book Commentaries on the Laws of England: "And these [great natural rights] may be reduced to three principal or primary articles: the right of personal security; the right of personal liberty; and the right of private property; because as there is no other known method of compulsion, or of abridging man's natural free will, but by an infringement or diminution of one or other of these important rights, the preservation of these, inviolate, may justly be said to include the preservation of our civil immunities in their largest and most extensive sense."

In order to have a dialogue about government, and especially the government established for America, the principle of Natural Law must be acknowledged and approached in the discussion.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Living under Tyranny

When the founders of this country were debating the principles by which we would be governed, the first premise on which they agreed was that there would be no king. They knew what it was like to live under a tyrannical monarch. They also knew from study and analysis of the ages, how Ruler's Law did not normally work out well for people in the "realm." That's the problem; the people are the property of the king and therefore have no say in their lives. They do not have inalienable rights given them from God, they only have the rights issued by the king, and what the king gives--the king can take away.

Ah, but what if the king is wise, kind, and generous? What if the monarch treats his subjects with fairness and concern? Have you ever, in studying the annuals of history, run across such a benevolent dictator?

Isn't there a saying that "power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely?" Something about the basic human psyche makes it nearly impossible for one person to possess huge amounts of money without greed, or be given unlimited power without despotism.

The Founders did not want a king, nor did they want a government behaving like a monarch.