Happy Independence Day to all Posse readers. Thanks for your patronage.
Thank Benjamin Franklin for today's headline. He was probably more prescient than he's been given credit for, when you consider recent trends in our nation.
Franklin's quip was actually uttered following the constitutional convention in 1787, but it is oh, so apropos on this Independence Day, 236 years after the signing of the Declaration of Independence codified the colonists' refusal to submit to Great Britain's taxation tryanny.
Of course, Chief Justice John Roberts' Obamacare opinion sticks in my craw less than a week after he issued it, and it bodes ill for an out-of-control, power-hungry government that Republicans often fail miserably to contain while Democrats put the pedal to the metal for bigger government, more intrusion and higher taxes.
Not just in recent years, but in recent decades — indeed, since the New Deal years — our nation has been drifting further and further from the Founders' intentions. We have an out-of-control labyrinth of entitlements, restrictions on campaign spending and freedom of speech, and way too many unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats and czars writing regulations and implementing policies that stick those government tentacles farther and farther out, with strangulation drawing nearer.
The Obamacare decision makes it clear that the ballot box is our last hope for retaining the liberty our Founders intended, and for which so many brave soldiers have suffered and died. But even that is vulnerable, as Democrats have mounted a full-frontal assault on photo ID's for voters, and the Eric Holder Department of Justice recently attempted to prevent Florida from removing non-citizens from voter rolls.
This was just the latest of many outrageous abuses of power by this maverick Attorney General, but thankfully a U.S. District judge struck down Justice. However, don't think there won't be many more attempts to taint the voting process and tilt it toward Democrats by this corrupt Justice Department.
At age 52, I am tempted to point my finger at today's teens and twenty-somethings and accuse them of being ignorant, apathetic and far more concerned with iPods, texting and tweeting than the future of their country and the disturbing trends playing out as I type.
However, upon further reflection I realize that many of these young people have been educated in a school and university system long ago taken hostage by misguided leftists. The leftists don't appreciate American exceptionalism (case in point: Barack OBama). They don't understand or appreciate American history, the genius of our constitution, the separation of powers and how precious our freedoms are. They would rather spend their time demonizing American imperialism and greed, and focus on our imperfections.
Of course, we have things in our past that we're not proud of (slavery, mistreatment of Native Americans, Jim Crow laws, child labor, etc.). But what country doesn't have bad things in its past? The important thing is we have the freedom, institutions and rule of law to go about correcting our mistakes, and we've done so repeatedly.
Most of us realize government cannot and will not create a utopia. Those who love expanding entitlements and do not acknowledge how unsustainable our present entitlements are; those who naively believe government can ensure equal outcomes, equal incomes, political correctness so no one's feelings get hurt, and all the rest of that left-wing rot-gut... THOSE are the people against whom we must stand guard. They are aided and abetted by the news media, Hollywood, the K-12 schools and academia. The current administration is carrying their water and doing severe damage to our republic.
Franklin uttered his famous "if you can keep it" phrase nearly 50 years before Alexis de Tocqueville published "Democracy in America". One of Tocqueville's concerns is unfolding before our very eyes. I quote:
"A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves largesse from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates promising the most benefits from the public treasury with the result that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy, always followed by a dictatorship. The average age of the world’s greatest civilizations has been 200 years."
Right on the money! Let's do what we can to spread this truth to those who don't know, don't care, or think they don't care. The hour is late.