As I typed the words above, I had to backspace several times because, twice before I got it right, I had typed 'america' with a lower-case 'a'. Funny what the subconscious (or the fingers, possessing a keenness of which we are unaware?), do when we find ourselves in a less-than-optimum frame of mind.
Today marks the fifth anniversary of President Ronald Reagan's death. He is now in the company of the great founding patriots who laid down the magnificent vision that he revived and revered.
About ten years before he was taken from us, President Reagan observed:
... whatever else history may say about me when I'm gone, I hope it will record that I appealed to your best hopes, not your worst fears, to your confidence rather than your doubts. My dream is that you will travel the road ahead with liberty's lamp guiding your steps and opportunity's arm steadying your way.
My fondest hope for each one of you -- and especially for young people -- is that you will love your country, not for her power or wealth, but for her selflessness and her idealism. May each of you have the heart to conceive, the understanding to direct, and the hand to execute works that will make the world a little better for your having been here. May all of you as Americans never forget your heroic origins, never fail to seek divine guidance, and never lose your natural, God-given optimism. And finally, my fellow Americans, may every dawn be a great new beginning for America and every evening bring us closer to that shining city upon a hill.
The personal foundation that allowed President Reagan to lead us from darkness to light in eight short years rested upon his reverence for the United States Constitution – the most magnificent blueprint for governance ever devised by the mind of man.
In our national leadership, that reverence had been tossed aside for the better part of the twentieth century: Theodore Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson, Franklin Roosevelt, and Lyndon Johnson, especially, ignored its cautions with impunity, and placed their own political agendas above its brilliant dictates, resulting in a gradual erosion of our Founders’ vision ... until Ronald Reagan successfully led us back onto the path the Founders had cleared for us.
Just two years before he left office, President Reagan issued an executive order (number 12612) on federalism in which he underlined the pressing need to limit government power, lest we lose our way again. Part of that eloquent order reads:
Federalism is rooted in the knowledge that our political liberties are best assured by limiting the size and scope of the national government ... The people of the States created the national government when they delegated to it those enumerated governmental powers relating to matters beyond the competence of the individual States ... All other sovereign powers, save those expressly prohibited the States by the Constitution, are reserved to the States or to the people.
The seed for that executive order was planted decades before, in his 'Rendezvous with Destiny/A Time for Choosing' speech, in which he cautioned:
The Founding Fathers knew a government can't control the economy without controlling people, and they knew that when a government sets out to do that, it must use force and coercion to achieve its purpose. So we have come to a time for choosing.
Reagan’s legacy is so powerful, and so widespread, that his countrymen have tended to take it for granted as something that always existed. And yet his simple reliance on our founding principles, as delineated in our Constitution, was the catalyst that turned an ailing economy into a robust one, that re-ignited the spirit of allegiance and duty into the hearts of his countrymen, and that ushered communism – in both the Soviet Union and East Germany – down the dark road toward resounding defeat.
Under Ronald Reagan, individual freedom, limited government, and the free market system, were proved to be the cornerstone of honest wealth, widespread prosperity, and national safety and security. He reminded us all that 'socialists ignore the side of man that is of the spirit. They can provide shelter, fill your belly with bacon and beans, treat you when you’re ill – all the things that are guaranteed to a prisoner or a slave. They don’t understand that we also dream'.
Despite media assertions otherwise, in eight short years, Ronald Reagan reversed dangerous economic trends, much worse than those that were in place when Barack Obama took office, by implementing four simple practices:
- government deregulation of the economy
- across-the-board reductions in tax rates
- anti-inflationary monetary policy, and
- non-defense budget restraint
The difference between the two ‘leaders’? The former loved America and embraced as his primary goal her security and prosperity. The latter is devoted to a political ideology in which genuine security and prosperity (the kind enjoyed by a free people) are viewed as enemies of the state.
President Reagan often echoed the observations of Alexis de Tocqueville, the Frenchman who visited America in the early 1800s and wrote extensively about what he observed, with great fascination and prescience. In an address then-Governor Reagan delivered at Hillsdale college a few years before his first election to the presidency, he observed:
... he [de Tocqueville] came here and he looked at everything he could see in our country, trying to find the secret of our success and then went back and wrote a book about it. But even then, 130 years ago, he saw signs that prompted him to warn us, that if we weren’t constantly on guard we would find ourselves covered by a network of regulations controlling every activity. And he said, if that came to pass we would one day find ourselves a nation of timid animals, with government the shepherd ... and if you lose your economic freedom, you lose your political freedom ... all freedom.
Believing, as de Tocqueville did, in the absolute necessity of vigilance against the over-encroachment of government, President Reagan restored a nation to former greatness. He closed the curtain on an era of national weakness, diffidence, and division, and eased fears and repressions that had gripped the world for decades.
His countrymen respected him because of his faithfulness to America’s roots; they loved him because of his goodness. He had the strength that emanates from character, the stalwartness that flows from conviction, the grace and gentleness that flow from humility, and the humor that flows from being comfortable with who he is.
What more can a free society ask of a leader?
I have a picture of President Reagan on the bulletin board above my desk at my office. Each day before I turn out the lights and close the door behind me, I look at his likeness, silently thank him for the gift of ‘rebirth’ that he so faithfully provided us all, and assure him that, in spite of the fact that his beloved republic has abandoned his lofty ideals, and forgotten the noble sacrifices that made us the most moral and prosperous people in the history of mankind, there is still a faithful remnant among his countrymen that will continue to cling to the vision that he held so dear. No matter the cost.
Yet, a mere twenty years since he left office, most Americans have forgotten their heroic origins and have declared that divine guidance is dispensable. They have allowed a cadre of elitist scoundrels in Washington to muddy, beyond recognition, the phrase 'of, by and for the people', and they have vicariously written its epitaph by virtue of their eyes-diverted apathy and indifference to its brutal murder.
The majority of our countrymen no longer value:
- instilling in their children a knowledge of, and reverence for, their proud heritage
- encouraging personal responsibility as opposed to careless, parasitic dependence on others for sustenance
- respecting the rule of law and seeking genuine justice as opposed to a perverted, entitlement-oriented sense of 'equality'
- the striving for, and rewarding of, excellence
- the responsibilities, both civic and personal, incumbent with citizenship in a free society
Mankind has been struggling for more than two millenia to comprehend and retain Plato's admonition. If Americans ever successfully heeded his warnings, we have since decided that such wisdom is sadly passé. In carelessly relaxing our grip on those citizen-characterisitics essential to preserving and defending a free society, the last best hope of man on earth has sentenced its children to a thousand years of darkness.
If I could call every American's attention to one paragraph of 'literature' in these toubling times, it would be this excerpt from Paul Johnson, in Modern Times, regarding the decline, and ultimately the collapse, of the 'religious impulse' in the modern world, and the filling of the hideous vacuum that it will create:
- Nietzsche rightly perceived that the most likely candidate would be what he called the 'Will to Power,' which offered a far more comprehensive and in the end more plausible explanation of human behavior than Marx or Freud. In place of religious belief, there would be secular ideology. Those who had once filled the ranks of the totalitarian clergy would become totalitarian politicians. And above all the Will to Power would produce a new kind of messiah, uninhibited by any religious sanctions whatsoever, and with an unappeasable appetite for controlling mankind.
Below is a column that recently appeared in Pravda. A resident of what President Reagan once called the ‘evil empire’ sums up fairly well America’s impending demise. How tragically ironic that the enemy that Ronald Reagan brought to its knees should, a mere twenty years later, be capable of foretelling the death of the beloved country he served so faithfully and so well.
Μολὼν λάβε ...
It must be said, that like the breaking of a great dam, the American decent into Marxism is happening with breath taking speed, against the back drop of a passive, hapless sheeple, excuse me dear reader, I meant people.
True, the situation has been well prepared on and off for the past century, especially the past twenty years. The initial testing grounds was conducted upon our Holy Russia and a bloody test it was. But we Russians would not just roll over and give up our freedoms and our souls, no matter how much money Wall Street poured into the fists of the Marxists.
Those lessons were taken and used to properly prepare the American populace for the surrender of their freedoms and souls, to the whims of their elites and betters.
First, the population was dumbed down through a politicized and substandard education system based on pop culture, rather then the classics. Americans know more about their favorite TV dramas then [sic] the drama in DC that directly affects their lives. They care more for their "right" to choke down a McDonalds burger or a BurgerKing burger than for their constitutional rights. Then they turn around and lecture us about our rights and about our "democracy". Pride blind [sic] the foolish.
Then their faith in God was destroyed, until their churches, all tens of thousands of different "branches and denominations" were for the most part little more then [sic] Sunday circuses and their televangelists and top protestant mega preachers were more then [sic] happy to sell out their souls and flocks to be on the "winning" side of one pseudo Marxist politician or another. Their flocks may complain, but when explained that they would be on the "winning" side, their flocks were ever so quick to reject Christ in hopes for earthly power. Even our Holy Orthodox churches are scandalously liberalized in America.
The final collapse has come with the election of Barack Obama. His speed in the past three months has been truly impressive. His spending and money printing has been a [sic] record setting, not just in America's short history but in the world. If this keeps up for more then [sic] another year, and there is no sign that it will not, America at best will resemble the Wiemar [sic] Republic and at worst Zimbabwe.
These past two weeks have been the most breath taking of all. First came the announcement of a planned redesign of the American Byzantine tax system, by the very thieves who used it to bankroll their thefts, loses and swindles of hundreds of billions of dollars. These make our Russian oligarchs look little more then ordinary street thugs, in comparison. Yes, the Americans have beat our own thieves in the shear volumes. Should we congratulate them?
These men, of course, are not an elected panel but made up of appointees picked from the very financial oligarchs and their henchmen who are now gorging themselves on trillions of American dollars, in one bailout after another. They are also usurping the rights, duties and powers of the American congress (parliament). Again, congress has put up little more then [sic] a whimper to their masters.
Then came Barack Obama's command that GM's (General Motor) president step down from leadership of his company. That is correct, dear reader, in the land of "pure" free markets, the American president now has the power, the self given power, to fire CEOs and we can assume other employees of private companies, at will. Come hither, go dither, the centurion commands his minions.
So it should be no surprise, that the American president has followed this up with a "bold" move of declaring that he and another group of unelected, chosen stooges will now redesign the entire automotive industry and will even be the guarantee of automobile policies. I am sure that if given the chance, they would happily try and redesign it for the whole of the world, too. Prime Minister Putin, less then [sic] two months ago, warned Obama and UK's Blair, not to follow the path to Marxism, it only leads to disaster. Apparently, even though we suffered 70 years of this Western sponsored [sic] horror show, we know nothing, as foolish, drunken Russians, so let our "wise" Anglo-Saxon fools find out the folly of their own pride.
Again, the American public has taken this with barely a whimper...but a "freeman" whimper.
So, should it be any surprise to discover that the Democratically controlled Congress of America is working on passing a new regulation that would give the American Treasury department the power to set "fair" maximum salaries, evaluate performance and control how private companies give out pay raises and bonuses? Senator Barney Franks [sic], a social pervert basking in his homosexuality (of course, amongst the modern, enlightened American societal norm, as well as that of the general West, homosexuality is not only not a looked down upon life choice, but is often praised as a virtue) and his Marxist enlightenment, has led this effort. He stresses that this only affects companies that receive government monies, but it is retroactive and taken to a logical extreme, this would include any company or industry that has ever received a tax break or incentive.
The Russian owners of American companies and industries should look thoughtfully at this and the option of closing their facilities down and fleeing the land of the Red as fast as possible. In other words, divest while there is still value left.
The proud American will go down into his slavery with out a fight, beating his chest and proclaiming to the world, how free he really is. The world will only snicker.