Wednesday, July 2, 2014

English-Speaking Peoples Invented Freedom

Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children’s children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.--RONALD REAGAN 1964

The foundation of the British Empire was not laid in the gloomy age of ignorance and suspicion but in an epoch when the rights of mankind were better understood and more clearly defined, than at any other former period. --GEORGE WASHINGTON, 1783
English-speaking people invented political freedom. They also invented religious freedom, rule of law and personal liberty. There is a long history of Anglo ideas dating from Pre-Norman times to the Magna Carta that ultimately found their way into the exceptional US Constitution. And that set the foundation for the most successful and vibrant political and social "experiment" ever seen in world history: the USA.

British writer Daniel Hannan has written a history of those ideas in Inventing Freedom: How English-Speaking People Made the Modern World (also A New Road to Serfdom - A Letter of Warning to America.)

A few quotes from Inventing Freedom:
1) "Elected parliaments, habeas corpus, free contract, equality before the law, open markets, an unrestricted press, the right to proselytize for any religion, jury trials: these things are not somehow the natural condition of an advanced society. They are specific products of a political ideology developed in the language in which you are reading these words. The fact that those ideas, and that language, have become so widespread can make us lose sight of how exceptional they were in origin."
2)  "What, after all, do we mean by Western Civilization?…There are three irreducible elements:
First the rule of law.  The government of the day doesn’t get to set the rules. Those rules exist on a higher plane and are interpreted by independent magistrates. The law, in other words, is not an instrument of state control, but a mechanism open to any individual seeking redress.

Second, personal liberty: freedom to say what you like, to assemble in any configuration you choose with your fellow citizens, to buy and sell without hindrance, to dispose as you wish of your assets, to work for whom you please, and, conversely, to hire and fire as you will.

Third, representative government. Laws should not be passed, nor taxes levied, except by elected legislators who are answerable to the rest of us. Now ask yourself how many countries that are habitually labeled Western have consistently applied those ideals over, say, the past century. How many have an unshakable commitment to them even today?"
3) "Anglo-Saxon values are a meme rather than a gene. They can be transmitted without any genetic vehicle. They explain why Bermuda is not Haiti, why Singapore is not Indonesia, why Hong Kong is not China (and, for that matter, not Macau).

These precepts had their genesis in the earliest Anglo-Saxon settlements, in the dark years, violent and unchronicled. From that era came three interrelated concepts that were to transform humankind. First, the idea of personal autonomy, including in contract and property rights; second, the notion that collective decisions ought to be made by representatives who are answerable to the community as a whole; third, the conception of the law as something more than a projection of the wishes of the ruler, as a folkright of inherited freedoms that bound the King just as surely as it bound his meanest subject.

Anglo-Saxon values made possible the transformation of our planet over the past three centuries, allowing extraordinary numbers of people to enjoy an unprecedented standard of living. Nowadays, those values are so widespread that we can easily think of them as an inevitable outcome of human development. It takes a major effort of will to imagine how revolutionary they must have seemed when first proposed."

Some 70% of people polled say the nation is on the wrong track, but too many of those think that government should do more. They are dead wrong. The truth is that national government should do less and end the large number of failed "adventures" both here and abroad. Devolving power back to the States is the correct answer.

Domestically, the absurdity of "ObamaCare" should be the clearest warning. That half-witted bureaucrats have the audacity to believe that they could manipulate an entire health insurance marketplace with 10,000 pages of regulation and "improve" it is proven FALSE! The design was deeply flawed. It's a sorry excuse for "choice." It's limited options are one-size-fits-all and an inferior product at nearly double the price. It raised insurance costs nearly 40% in one year alone! (those prices will never drop!) All of the promised benefits were lies. Everything got worse, not better. It's probable that it will hurt more people than it helps especially since it's pushed medical costs sky high. Since it's passage, a large majority of people are not happy with it but we're told that this failure can't be reversed!! If you don't like it, lump it! But pay-up you will.

So, in summary, it was IMPOSED on you by Liberal lies and promises whether you like it or not. And you're told that you have to tolerate it! Add the irresponsibility of Obama and his enablers in creating a vast new entitlement when all of the other entitlements are financially underwater for as far as the eye can see. How much more do I have to say?

This is what happens when dumb people come to power.

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