The Spirit of 1776 in 2012
Happy 4th of July America! We have so much to celebrate here in the land of the free and home of the brave don’t we? Then why does this 4th seem to ring a little hollow? Sure, family and friends are abundant, fireworks large and small are anxiously awaiting a match, BBQs are being meticulously cleaned and loaded with charcoal, the red white and blue adorn every fixture, and libations await to conduct the entire affair.
America is 235 years old today, but what will the next 200 years bring? The next 100? If the last 10 years can provide us with a reasonable trajectory one could arguably predict a rough road ahead. From a metastasizing national security apparatus and 4 foreign wars to an economy on life support and massive debt we find ourselves in a uniquely precarious situation. This Independence Day may also ring especially hollow for over a quarter of Americans who can’t quite put their finger on who we declared independence from, let alone for what reasons.
This may seem shocking to you, but it is true! What is equally true is that most Americans have forgotten that our independence was not just from Great Britain, but from its oppressive government. We fought a war, you know killing people with armies, in order to free ourselves from its tyrannical systems. Let me be clear, King George III and his government were by no means herding our forebears into concentration camps or enslaving colonists for work in hard labor. Lack of representation and one too many taxes was all it took for us to start ending the lives of British soldiers. This is representative of how greatly our forefathers cherished our inalienable rights and liberties and how little they would tolerate others trampling over them.
In the last 10 years we have seen exponential growth in government under both parties, Republicans and Democrats. Our systems of governance have been demonstrably broken down under the “silent artillery of time“, through the purposeful dismantling of constitutional safeguards, and the ensconcing of aberrant and unelected agencies (i.e. the National Security Agency (NSA) and the Federal Reserve, two inherently mischievous and unconstitutional bodies) amidst our free society. This multitude of vulnerable governmental entities is incalculable beckoning powerful interests to penetrate the halls of democracy and usurp regulatory posts via hordes of private lobbyists – our mercenaries of influence.
At every turn we pay through taxes to be searched, stopped, fondled, monitored, and categorized by these supposed departments of freedom. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and its loyal dog the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is the domestic equivalent of our foreign legions. While our troops are away fighting unending warfare in numerous countries, known and unknown, the Pentagon has grown, here at home, a grossly self serving and powerful private intelligence and R&D community who’s ultimate obsession is with the literal manufacture of not only weapons and war technology, but also the bogeymen to fight them with.
Meanwhile, our economy struggles. It is laden with regulation, taxes, anywhere from 11.4% to over 20% unemployment (here, here, here, and here), and operated under the new paradigm of crony capitalism our government has been put in the position of picking the winners and losers instead of the objective and invisible hand of the free market. Bad firms with their worse ideas and antiquated business models are kept afloat by the largesse of government intervention creating a tempestuous business environment where instead of investing money in growing brands and hiring new workers companies cautiously hoard cash and ship jobs overseas.
What will it take for today’s Americans to rise up and say enough is enough? According to our Founders they knew the tendency of most nations throughout history is to roll over and submit to tyranny and governmental overreach, but as far as our founders were concerned Americans are duty bound to abolish and reestablish a new and more free government!
“…Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.” – Declaration of Independence
Aside from our charge as individuals to be vigilant in our mission of freedom, the Declaration of Independence is nonpareil in one important aspect, it was the first document ever referred to as a declaration of independence. It is this singular document, this public example (not our armies), which over the last 235 years has recreated the world in our image, that is to say, has turned the world from a static amalgam of empires into a dynamic juxtapositional collage of independent nation states. While nations have attempted to grow their power and influence by invading and/or attempting to control other countries through various vehicles causing much war and tumult this world of independents is still thankfully the status quo. It however may not always be so.
The growing role of the United Nations threatens to throw America and the rest of the world back into the dark ages with regard to decentralized independent control of our nations and their peoples. Regardless of the intoxicating prospects of perpetual peace envisaged by the UN’s proponents it nonetheless is a superstructure with the incredible potential for apocalyptic failure.
Real peace is achieved through the free market of governments, the right of free humanity to emigrate to wherever they may find the most happiness. The question this 4th of July is: is America still that destination and if we are not, how do we restore our Republic?
This article was originally posted at PurpleSerf.com in 2011. It is being used again because of its persistent relevance.