By: Thomas Lee Abshier, ND
The following email debate is between 1) a Libertarian (John) who contends that the Constitution was a document influenced by Mercantile Shipping interests, and 2) a Constitutional Biblical Libertarian, a patriot (Thomas) who believes the Constitution is a document meant to codify the Judeo-Christian tradition into a secular document that would reflect the perfect balance between the law and liberty of God’s kingdom.
I agree that the Constitution has been perverted from its highest intent. The Federal government has expanded its scope far beyond that intended by its founders, largely through Judicial activism. But, this does not mean that the document is inherently, deeply, and fatally flawed. Rather, it raises the question as to how we can implement its provisions in a manner that reflects the Godliness of the Kingdom of Heaven that could and should someday be fully manifested here on earth.
The argument presented by John is that the shipping interests of the day influenced the Federalists (pro-Constitutionalists) to include the power for unlimited taxation for defense so that they could pass the cost of defending their shipping onto the taxpayer. This would allow them to compete with England (and other countries) who already had this arrangement with their commercial shippers.
The argument sounds weak (presented with the bias to justify the Libertarian argument to eliminate the Constitution, government, taxes, and power to defend). Pirates commonly attacked commercial freight ships coming from the American Colonies prior to the Revolutionary War; there was no protection by the Royal Navy prior to separation from England. The drive for taxes and a Federal defense was not just about protecting shipping lanes, there were real threats to America from enemies that wished to overtake and destroy her. In the War of 1812, the British invaded our shores and burned Washington DC.
Thus, this entire argument seems biased toward serving the Libertarian argument to depreciate the moral high ground of the Constitution, and therefore create doubt and rebellion against the government it created. The Libertarians wish to create a sense of revulsion and disgust at the small-minded, avaricious, self-serving shipping industry, who supposedly were the major movers behind the crafting of the Constitution. This argument implies that the Constitution was created to form a government which could be shaped like wax in the hand of the industrialist to do its bidding.
I see this argument/data about shipping and the Federalists-Anti-Federalists debate as a prop, as bits and pieces of decontextualized data extracted from the mass of historical records, that plausibly validates the Libertarian perspective, but does not rise to the level of truly capturing the larger spirit of the Framers of the Constitution.
I have not seen the text of the original Federalist-AntiFederalist debates to validate or deny, or qualify this claim. But, it seems plausible that agents for the shipping industry may have spoken and advocated for their interests in this regard. And, it may have been one of the concerns that was used as a factor in approving the powers of defense and taxation.
The real question is whether this is a serious flaw regarding the intent and spirit of the Constitution? Is this an important historical fact that gives us deep insight into the general spirit and intent of the Constitutional framers? There is vast scholarly evidence to support the contention that the framing of the Constitution arose as a product of a Christian environment. As such, I am doubtful that any special interest took the document from its middle path of Godliness and intent to balance and moderate the important forces of society and government.
It is probably not possible to determine whether the lobby to support the mercantile shipping industry alone was a/the primary factor that drove the inclusion of articles authorizing taxation and defense in the Constitution. The issue of whether the shipping corporations/partnerships had an influence on the inclusion of taxation and defense is important because it forces us to ask whether this historical force acting in the past strikes a fatal blow to our concept of the Constitution as a good and Godly national charter.
Must we throw out the Constitution, and rewrite it so that there is no provision for defense or taxation so that the Federal government cannot go beyond the bounds of a limited governmental entity that will not intrude itself into the issues of Health Care, education, banking, and corporate management…?
I suspect there were other conditions besides simply protecting shipping that drove the adoption of provisions to “provide for the common defense”. And, while the Constitution does provide for taxation, it was a limited tax base that was allowed in the original text of the Constitution. The income tax was not adopted by the 16th Amendment into the Constitution until 1913. Still the Libertarian, seemingly intent upon showing what a bad spirited document we have in the Constitution, will argue that the seeds of the abuse of power are present within it because it allows the central government to concentrate wealth (and therefore power) through taxes. Simply having the power to tax and defend enables the government to suppress/oppress the people by using concentrated wealth to control and oppress the very citizens that paid the tax. Likewise, giving government the power to wage war opens the possibility for power-hungry leaders to engage in empire-building in the name of national security. And, the Libertarian would proclaim that the only sure way to prevent such possibility is to restrict government from ever having the power of defense and waging war.
The common Libertarian solution to preventing or reversing the overbearing influence and power of a central government is to eliminate (all or most) government structures and functions. Instead of government, the Libertarian proposes that we privatize all possible activities, and let the market make the decisions about how to execute foreign policy.
This differs a little from the Conservative doctrine of smaller government, but, the Conservative is usually willing to embrace the Constitution as a good framework that simply needs to be interpreted more rigorously according to its literal meaning. The Conservative would likely criticize the expansion of Federal influence through the numerous Court decisions that have expanded powers beyond an obvious extension of Constitutional provisions.
Allowing government to have the power to tax and defend is anathema to the Libertarian, who believes that government will be corrupted by having these powers. The Libertarian solution to this problem of empowering expanding/oppressive government is to never give government such powers. The Libertarian solution is to leave the “job” of defense to private contractors who will respond to needs as they arise, and will be motivated to do so in a cost-efficient manner.
Section 8: Powers of Congress: The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States
16th Amendment: 2/3/1913: The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several States, and without regard to any census or enumeration.
The Libertarian perspective is at odds with the Constitution and its subsequent rule of law, much like the socialist/humanist, but for polar opposite reasons. The Libertarian wishes to let man express himself in any way possible limited only by the barriers established by other men, while the socialist/communist believes that the relationships between men are best dictated/directed/regulated by the State. The Libertarian believes that the generalized forces of the market (a general term applicable to all areas of human interaction) are sufficient by themselves without central governmental organization to regulate men and their behaviors. There are many schools of Libertarianism, from anarchist (no government and no law) to a mini-government with all other relationships moderated by the forces of interaction, contract, and free exchange. The theory undergirding the Libertarian philosophy is that simply allowing men to advocate for their own needs and boundaries will result in a more free society, without the imposition of restrictions of government, which may be motivated more by power or bureaucratic mediocrity than qualified reason. In the Libertarian world, the passions of men struggle for satisfaction against the individuals and groups with opposing interests. Thus, for the Libertarian, the individual right to do as he pleases is limited only by the objections resolved by reasoned or forceful settlement with his neighbor.
The worldview of being able to do whatever we want, as long as we do not harm others sounds reasonable. The resistance to our satisfaction is that the boundaries placed by self/others are often too large or inappropriate, and we must advocate or fight for our position. Thus, each man serves as his own judge and army, determining in his heart/mind his sense of proper boundary and then exercising the force of reason or arms as is necessary to come to a median solution. Every interaction thus involves the balance of two forces, ultimately creating a dynamic equilibrium between the advocacy of self-interest, and the sense of proper care and respect for the needs and boundaries of others.
Such a perspective is very close to the Judeo-Christian concept of law and government, whose primary governing principle is, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind, and strength, and your neighbor as yourself.” To the extent, the Libertarian philosophy embraces this central governing moral guidance, the Libertarian and the Christian have agreement. But in general, the Libertarian system is a Godless system, without a central governing authority, while the Judeo-Christian system is an inherently center-bowing philosophy where God and His Law dictate the larger boundaries of life’s expression. From those macro-patterns of God’s Law, we see the application of the general principles of Law in complex and unique interpersonal issues of boundary and personal desire. The simplicity of God’s Law has multitudinous applications to specific circumstances, each modified by competing principles that modify the importance of any one of the Godly Laws, virtues, and His warning against vice and sin. The combination of simple principles, along multiple axi of circumstances, results in a multivariate, chaotic, fractal or octave-like plot of the set of all possible righteous actions.
The central distinction between the Libertarian and Judeo-Christian philosophy is thus, the difference in belief in a human sense/judgment of right, and the existence of an immutable Law given by God, which defines boundaries from a place of absolute judgment, albeit infinitely modified by the innumerable combinations of force and context. Both Christian and Libertarian are committed to considering the needs of self and others. It is the issue of a Law decreed by God, and the resultant hierarchy of authority and the fact of absolute judgment with which the Libertarian differs. The Libertarian places no authority higher than his own conception of truth and fairness (and that dictated by agreement between people), while the Christian holds that God’s Law is supreme, and government is the agent of God in rightly administering the specifics of men’s transactions required at the octave of the large group.
Sent: Wednesday, May 12, 2010 11:11 AM
Subject: U.S. Constitution Of Unlimited Powers
[This is part of the evidence why I think the U.S. Constitution was a sham pushed by special interests, and today’s end game is the natural outcome. I recently studied the pro and con arguments by the Federalists and Anti-Federalists, and it became pretty clear to me what the Federalists were pushing on behalf of special interests. The “Bill of Rights” that actually passed in the U.S. Constitution was drastically shortened from the Anti-Federalists’ proposal and was included only to throw a bone to the Anti-Federalists to get them to sign off on the document. The “Bill of Rights” was not the showpiece of the document, only an expedient negotiation to get it passed.]
If more people bothered to actually read this document…they would discover the unlimited powers it provided to government. Beginning with a preamble setting forth the purposes of the Constitution being “to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty,” the document proceeds to set forth how such purposes are to be attained.
Article I, Sec. 8 informs us that “Congress shall have Power to lay and collect Taxes, . . . to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States. . . .” Later on, we discover that Congress also has the power “To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers, and all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any Department or Officer thereof.” Standing by themselves, these words would provide the most ambitious tyrant with the only grant of authority that would ever be needed to carry out his or her desired purposes. As Lord Macaulay so well expressed it, “Your Constitution is all sail and no anchor.”
One of Ms. Kagan’s college professors has stated that “she’s a woman whose… deepest dedication is to the Constitution of the United States.” There is nothing startling in all of this: one can find in this document all the power needed for putting together any political program.
Sent On: May 23, 2010 11:08 AM
Here’s my thesis why special interests were desperate for a U.S. Constitution. Consider first that shipping companies were the mega-corporations of their day. They may not have been “corporations” per se, but partnerships of various structures. Consider also that during the age of kings in Europe that kings defended their sovereign territories with Royal armies and navies. These defense forces were naturally financed through taxation. The central purpose of these defense forces was to defend the realm. But a side benefit enjoyed by private shipping companies was protection of their shipping vessels and their transits across vast oceans. Part of the true cost of shipping included defense against would-be thieves and pirates and against the warships of other nations, but private shipping companies did not have to pay this cost. The defense cost was underwritten by taxation of the king’s subjects. Therefore the price of shipped goods was lower than the true market price. It’s a cozy deal — the shipping companies enjoy a subsidy, their customers enjoy a lower cost of shipped goods, the king enjoys more justification for taxation to protect the “vital national interest” of import/export commerce. The taxpayer pays the cost, but the cost is perceived as a justified national interest, not as a subsidy to a private industry. I hope you are with me this far!
What would be the alternative? Make these private businesses incur the full cost of their own operation — make them provide their own private defense if they want to be in business in a known hazardous environment of the open seas. In that case, the customers will pay the full cost, and the relative efficiency of the defense operations will play a role in the competitive advantage between companies. Just as their profit improves with a more efficient shipping operation, a more efficient private defense force would improve their profit and their competitive advantage against other shippers. But the model of the government-provided defense introduces a monopoly into the service of defense, and with monopoly comes inefficiency and inflated cost, not to mention the cost to taxpayers of paying for an inflated monopoly and subsidizing private interests (that have cozy relationships with the crown). Does this sound eerily similar to today’s world so far?
Okay, along comes the American Revolution. There was a gap of several years between the achievement of American independence and the final adoption of the US Constitution. What happened during this time besides the Federalist and Anti-Federalist debates? Consider that the American shipping companies were now on their own! Previously, America was a colony of Britain, and the shipping companies enjoyed the protection of the British navy. But now, after the Revolution, these shipping companies faced the true cost of protecting their shipping fleets on the open seas, while all their competitors (flying the flags of European nations) still enjoyed protection by their respective national taxpayer-provided battleships. These large American shipping companies were no longer competitive against the subsidized foreign companies. They had to reflect the cost of private defense in their shipping costs which were undercut by foreign shippers who still enjoyed subsidized government-provided defense. Imagine, powerful mega-corporations of their day, desperate for economic survival against subsidized competitors, facing a rag-tag colonial government with a weak Articles of Confederation with no national defense force. These American shipping companies have money to spend and positive experience over decades in their previous cozy relationships with the British monarchy — they know that they can structure a cozy deal with a new American government that will benefit them, and they know that politicians are available to the highest bidder. It’s a powder keg situation only needing a spark.
Along come the Federalist/Anti-Federalist debates. Please read them! You will see that the Anti-Federalists gave consistent airtight arguments for individual liberty, individual sovereignty, and argued that the American Revolution was won by their individualist rag-tag nature without a central government and without a central defense force. What did the Federalists do? They ignored the Anti-Federalist arguments, did not address them, and instead painted a picture of panic. As the Federalists openly and proudly claimed, the proposed US Constitution deliberately contained clauses of unlimited power and unlimited taxation (check me out!) based on the argument that the Americans can never know the extent of any possible foreign threat. So the new central government needs the power to raise armies and tax the citizens to any extent necessary to counter any possible threat. That would be like me saying to you “Tom, forget your freedom and the way you have lived all your life. Do you realize that an asteroid can hit Earth at any moment? You should be spending all your effort and every waking moment of your life preparing for the possible disaster that such an asteroid could bring! Can you prove to me that we are NOT under such a threat? Give up your life’s goals and all your money, and turn yourself and all your wealth over to the government so the government can muster as many resources as humanly possible to defend against an asteroid hitting the Earth!”
This is the kind of argument the Federalists made about possible foreign threats to the American states and the urgent need for an unlimited central government and defense forces to defend against any such real or imagined threat. The Anti-Federalists basically conceded, well, okay I see your point, but here is a Bill of Rights that we insist you include in this government charter to protect individual liberty! The original Bill of Rights was very long and detailed. The Federalists chopped the original Bill of Rights down to 10 and threw it in as a political expedient to get the Anti-Federalists to sign off on the charter.
Why were the Federalists so consumed with the panic of possible foreign threats? Financial influence by the unprotected shipping companies? (I would love to research and supply the proof here, but the circumstances I outlined are too compelling to ignore.)
Doesn’t this “panic” approach to political argument sound like today? Global warming? Flu pandemics? Poor without health insurance? Help! Panic! We gotta pass something today even if nobody has read it!
Do you think I have the makings of a book here?
From: “Thomas Lee Abshier, ND”
Sent On: May 14, 2010, at 5:22 AM,
John, your thesis is that the deepest roots of the US Constitution were based upon granting power to corporations. I find such a thesis as factually/historically unlikely, given the small amount of industrialization in the US at the time of the writing of the Constitution. The men involved in framing the Constitution were in large part farmers, professionals, and small businessmen. It seems improbable to imagine that the industrialist lobby had taken such control over the Constitutional Convention as to be the superior and victorious organizing force around which the entire spirit and intent of the document revolved.
I believe the intent of the Constitution was to create a government that would allow freedom, both for groups who had differing political/religious views (i.e. States, churches, communities…) and for individuals who had divergent expressions of desire. Ultimately they crafted a document allowing for both power (actual forceful authority to tax, wage war, enforce law…) and liberty (protection of rights to worship, speak, self-defense…).
The Bill of Rights is commonly recognized as an addition demanded by forces opposing adoption of the Constitution. And while it was not penned as part of the original offering, its addition provided an important opposing polarity to the powers of the state by acknowledging the inherent rights of people as given by God.
Such development of a document is characteristic of the process of organically growing a mature idea that reflects the heart and soul of God and His Law. Men usually imperfectly divine the Truth and Way of God in their first attempts. In other words, we could project upon this delay in writing the Bill of Rights, a theory that such was only done in begrudging compliance with the objections of those who opposed Corporate rule, or we could hypothesize that men are imperfect and only slowly hear/feel the voice of the Holy Spirit in their hearts. The unfolding of the drama of men generally undershoots and overshoots the perfect will of God in its restrictions and liberty in the play between the forces of law and passion.
The concern about Judicial oligarchy is well founded. When the Court ruled in Marbury vs. Madison, the precedent of the Supreme Court having superior power over the Legislature was established, and its ascendancy has reversed the original intent of the Court as the weakest branch. Jefferson noted this at the time and predicted that the Court would be the entry point for destruction of the balance of power.
Neither the fact of Judicial tyranny creeping into prominence, nor the criticism of a group of Anti-Federalists, nor advocacy of the Federalists, proves the intent of corporations to create a prison planet, slave state, or feudal kingdom through Constitutional provisions. Still, there is a high probability that agents representing the corporate world sought to bend the Constitution to favor allowing the power of corporations to dominate the legislative, judicial, and executive processes.
And while you did not present all the data you had regarding the Corporate cabal, I’m sure that prooftexting arguments from the Federalist/Anti debates could present what appears to be a convincing pattern of words and concepts that validate your thesis of Corporate rule. Since I do not have the arguments to confront at this time, I must wait to rebut more specific evidence of Corporate influence on the Constitutional convention. From my perspective, the argument that Corporate influence has fatally flawed the Constitution appears to be for the purpose of sullying the assumption of the Constitution as a good and Godly document.
I believe that the undercurrent of the Constitution was ultimately guided by divine inspiration. There were no doubt many forces operating in the process of creating the document – numerous forces act in every committee debate. The Bill of Rights may have been passed as an addendum/concession. There may have been Corporate interests that were pushing to have their perspective and rights be included, and they may have even tried to dominate the debate. Nevertheless, I believe the Constitution is an expression of divine will as a pattern that can organize our society around the principles of Godliness.
It appears that such arguments are an attempt by the Libertarian to dethrone God from His rule in America. If the Constitution was in fact divinely inspired, then there would be no plausible defense to the argument that we should eliminate a central Federal government. Likewise, the Libertarian could not argue against the powers of the States to pass laws restricting personal freedoms in the realm of moral behavior. If God has standards of ideal/highest human behavior, then the State should have every right to pass laws in realms that dictate punishment for moral violations in the realms of sex, drugs, and other “victimless crimes”.
I take the Constitution as a document that came to man by divine inspiration over a period of time, and through the process of competing interests illuminating aspects of the balance which were accommodated by compromise acceptable to all parties. Certainly, the Constitution was constructed with potential weaknesses in its ability to defend against the domination of special interests. And this is the reason why this document, this guiding set of principles, is suitable only for governing a people who are already guided by the divine principles of loving neighbor as self and putting God’s principles as supreme to all of man’s laws and passions.
I believe the most productive perspective on the Constitution is achieved by asking how we may use it as a guide to group behavior as we attempt to implement the laws and ways of heaven on earth. Currently, such a concern has been submerged beneath the new false Constitutional mandate requiring “Separation of Church and State.” As a result, we only debate how the powers of executive agency, legislature, and courts should subjugate the masses to the dictates of our new humanistic religion and its precepts of Political Correctness.
As Madison said, this Constitution is not suitable for anyone other than a Godly people. In other words, we must try to be holy as a society, otherwise, we will use the implied powers of the Constitution for the purposes of advancing the interests of corporations, ideologies (such as socialism, humanism, Islam….).
As you note, there were undoubtedly forces of the Corporate interests attempting to mold the Constitution as a tool for superiority. But, the same could be argued for the faction of Christian patriots that they were attempting to mold the Constitution for their purpose and superiority. The same argument could be applied to the deists, secularists, atheists, agrarians, isolationists, bankers, etcetera. We can turn the lens of our attention to magnify and buttress any argument and thereby validate our particular perspective in our attempt to validate our belief in the superiority of one ideological influence on the Founders’ intent.
Appropriation of the authority of the Founders’ intent to support our ideological purpose is useful in giving force to our arguments. The Libertarian argument that the Constitution was a document whose intent was support of the corporation dethrones its majesty, and validates the theory of personal will as king. I do not find such an approach useful, since it merely quenches the light of the Constitution, and forces us to look to man and his philosophies to find a more perfect organizing force than One Nation under God, with the Constitution, Declaration, Bill of Rights, and Bible as our founding documents. No actual theory of right government is proposed by the Libertarian, only the vague notion of self-government without the oppression and corruption frequently exercised by government.
I chose to instead see how the Constitution could be sanctified. How could this document be implemented in a way that is, in fact, consistent with divine Law and God-ordained patterns of righteousness? I choose to look at the final goal of an ideal world, properly implementing the divine center of the Constitution, and then argue for its validity and divinity using history, personalities, social trends, reason, and logic.
In summary, I have no doubt about your contention that the Constitution could be seen through the lens of “the corporation as ruler”. I don’t find that perspective helpful in creating the ideal world of today. I instead try to look for how the Constitution could be interpreted and implemented that would give us a good and Godly government. If we moderate the influence of corporation, government, and the individual, and live according to the commands of scripture, love God, and love neighbor as self, then we end up honoring the rights of others as much as our own.
In such a world, the man in the role of governor will be as beneficent to his fellow man as himself; justice would be equal even if the roles were reversed. When men have regulated their own passions for pleasure in all its forms over the needs of others, and such regulation is general through the society, we will have a good and Godly government. The Kingdom of Heaven will be close when the various groups and layers of society come to a proper Godly equilibrium – where the governor and governed, corporation-consumer, and societal-cultural environment are self-correcting of abuse and injustice.
I agree with you. The answer lies in achieving a society based as close as possible on pure Judeo-Christian values. But my point wasn’t intended to go that far! Too many people say we need to get back to the original Constitution. My point is to dispel that notion and show that we need to question the Constitution itself and the original intent of its proponents. Even people who don’t accept this point should wonder if they could take us back to the original Constitution, what would prevent the same outcome we have today if they start over with the same document?
The concept of Original Intent is valuable only to the extent that we are committed to the fidelity of implementing the Constitution as the Founders intended. The definition and specifics of Original Intent will always be murky because of the variety of ideas presented, and perspectives of many individuals. No doubt there was not one monolithic idea that all participants held throughout the Constitutional Convention. I have used my particular set of beliefs and perspectives about the founding era to validate my beliefs about their original intent. Others take a different perspective. I believe mine is correct, as being a Judeo Christian based intent. Others who disagree will validate their perspective based on their chosen pieces of data that validate that opinion. The group dynamic is swayed by presentation and argument, both by reason and the subconscious drone of the media imprinting us with data points that can then be used to give visceral validation to new concepts intentionally fabricated to advance an agenda. Is the Judeo Christian contention such a fabrication of zealots? I don’t think so. I stand on my belief in our history and tradition as a Christian Nation. We can choose to undo, forget, remake our social contract at any time, but to do so would uncover us from God’s blessing and protection, and we would again experience the horrors of famine, poverty, and domination as played out by the Children of Israel as they repeatedly turned from the One True God and His worship.
—– Original Message —–
From: Dr Margo
Sent: Friday, May 14, 2010 6:18 AM
Subject: Fw: Bad Time For Christians in UK
Great video clip from CBN. Please watch it and send it to everyone in an attempt to save this nation from what is happening in the UK. This persecution will only get worse unless we promote our Christian heritage like Tom has done on his website www.drsenator.com. Please make the people you know and love aware of the fact that “all law is legislated morality.” http://www.drsenator.com/LegislatingMorality.html
The only question: is whose law will be imposed, God’s law which makes men free and provides equal justice under the law, or man’s caprice which enslaves them? And then study to know that the founders and their most quoted individual, Baron Montesquieu, spent a great deal of time analyzing forms of government and concluded that: “Society, notwithstanding all its revolutions, must repose on principles that do not change… The Christian religion, which ordains that men should love each other, would without doubt, have every nation blest with the best civil, the best political laws; because these, next to this religion, are the greatest good that men can give and receive.”
http://www.drsenator.com/FoundingFathers.html Read some of the words of the founders instead of their modern detractors. These were sincere men who were not plotting to enslave the people, but to set them free in the Christian nation they so loved, in the only way they knew how to do that, by close adherence to the Words of God.
John 8:32 and you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”
2 Cor. 3:17 Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.
On June 28, 1813, in a letter to Thomas Jefferson, John Adams wrote:
The general principles, on which the Fathers achieved independence, were the only Principles in which that beautiful Assembly of young Gentlemen could Unite… .And what were these general Principles? I answer, the general Principles of Christianity, in which all these Sects were United: And the general Principles of English and American Liberty, in which all those young Men United, and which had United all Parties in America, in Majorities sufficient to assert and maintain her Independence. Now I will avow, that I then believe, and now believe, that those general Principles of Christianity, are as eternal and immutable, as the Existence and Attributes of God; and that those Principles of Liberty, are as unalterable as human Nature and our terrestrial, mundane System.
On October 11, 1798, President John Adams stated in his address to the military:
We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge, or gallantry, would break the strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.
From: Dr Margo
Sent: Friday, May 14, 2010 11:17 AM
Subject: Re: U.S. Constitution Of Unlimited Powers
Did you watch the video at the end? You should do so. It shows what happens when lawful people are talked out of the Christian principles that made their nation great. When they say “you can’t legislate morality” they exclude themselves forcing their version of “morality” down everyone else’s throat. The supposed “oppressed” become the oppressors, just like they did in Nazi Germany when the homosexuals took over Germany and then tried to overtake the whole world.
It is my opinion, the Constitution is not flawed so much as “liars do figure” (as in “figures don’t lie”) how to circumvent the law. Judicial activists at the turn of the century on the courts started subverting the Constitution by reinterpreting the commerce clause, to the point where they now tell us what toilets and light bulbs we can and cannot buy.
Then in 1947, the courts started this “separation of church and state” lie because the only way they could destroy the Constitution was to lie about it and the founders and prevent students from learning about God and our godly heritage in schools. The only way they could destroy our freedom was by lying and they had to codify the lie and force it down the throats of the American people.
Since driving the Bible and its influence out of the schools and forcing Dr. Spock in, they managed to raise a bunch of spoiled rotten red diaper doper babies who they taught moral relativism, and then subverted all of business with their godless greed, and politicians who would force even the decent business people to do awful things that ended up sending the economy into a tailspin due to Fanny and Freddie.
A Libertarian approach to a “constitution” would not necessarily work better; just look back at the French Revolution and see how that one worked out. Pure Libertarianism is anarchy. We almost had that with the Articles of Confederation and that’s what facilitated the need for the Constitution. The states were already on the verge of breaking up because there wasn’t a strong enough referee at a higher level to keep the union together. That is why Lincoln was such a “union” guy, united we stand, divided we fall (can a nation so conceived long endure?).
The problem today is that law and order (probably why the show of that name was so popular for so long – people’s hunger for justice) is ignored, the wicked aren’t punished for breaking the law, and the Constitution is ignored. In fact, anyone who wants the law to be followed and upheld is now called “mean spirited” and “bigoted.” God’s Lex (law) is no longer Rex (king). “No king but King Jesus” is no longer our king. Given a godly people who are trying to obey the Lord first, the Constitution worked fine and will work fine again. Given godless thugs in positions of power who ignore the Constitution and the law, nothing will work, never has, never will. Only one way works; God’s way. Everything else turns God’s lovely planet into a living hell. We see this illustrated repeatedly in world events and throughout history.
Yes, I watched the video at the end: well done. And thanks as always for the dialog and your comments. Intelligent and measured, as always. You give great support to your perspective, and I agree with your points and reasons behind them. This subject is obviously much greater than we can discuss in a few emails. We agree in spirit on many points.
Certainly, the Federalist (pro-Constitution) forces were not monolithic – some favored it with good and honest intentions and some favored it out of special interest. But in recently hearing the detailed pro and con arguments during that time, a consistent theme came clear to me. Despite those Federalists with honest intentions, I would like to explore with you what I see as fatal flaws.
As I am sure you know, the U.S. Constitution was signed by an almost entirely different group of people from those who signed the Declaration of Independence. I think you and I would entirely agree on the philosophy, heroism, and enormous human achievement of the Declaration of Independence, the American Revolution, and the true Founders of American liberty. Sadly, most people include the U.S. Constitution in the same breath, but here is where I believe we need to look much more carefully.
Another area we can discuss is your contention that the French Revolution had Libertarian roots. I have read several accounts of American revolutionaries (both philosophers and patriots) who embraced individual liberty at the core of their being, going to France, hearing the French revolutionary leaders and departing in disgust or in fear for their lives. I don’t see Rousseau’s philosophy and the French revolutionaries as Libertarian in the least, but very collectivist.
Our history is written by the winners. The rebels in the American Revolution are good. The rebels in the American Civil War are bad. Both rebel forces staked their lives for independence, and I hope you know that slavery was a smokescreen at best.
Totally off topic, if you have time for “research reading”, I highly recommend both of you reading the socialist manifesto “Looking Backward: 2000 to 1887” by Edward Bellamy (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Looking_Backward).
You can read a synopsis, but please read and enjoy the book. I find it invaluable to have the background of the ideas and tone and vision of this book when I speak with liberals, socialists, and progressives. I consider this book their *best shot* at outlining the utopian socialist vision, yet it was written over 100 years ago (before the author could have witnessed the 20th-century horrors of Nazism, Communism, etc.). It is written as science fiction, as a first-person account by a 19th century American who suddenly finds himself in 21st-century socialist utopia America, and he is writing to his 21st-century socialist colleagues about his life back in the primitive 19th century. Very compelling writing style and storyline. If we are willing to turn off our critical brain, we can let ourselves get taken in and will gain a good understanding of the appeal of socialism. This book should be required reading for every clear-thinking individualist of Judeo-Christian values who wants to speak constructively with socialists and understand their perspective. The book was recommended to me by a socialist, and I am glad I read it… not for the reasons the person wanted me to read it!
Best Wishes Always!