“THE MALADY OF NATIONS”
We have now come to the end of our five-part series, having offered what I hope has been viewed as a unique perspective of the economic and political trappings that have systematically stripped America of its vitality over the past 100 years. As I review the previous articles, there is a pervasive pessimism suggestive of little hope for positive change.
This article wraps my perspective in a historical context reaching back millennia. I hope you find it entertaining and personally useful. And, I bid you adieu.
During a speech, Mitt Romney opined on the health care bill in an extremely critical tone, including an overall condemnation of the entitlement mentality; he ended his tirade with this comment: “…and then they (Obama and friends) will cut Medicare benefits by $500,000,000.” Just keep this quote in mind as we proceed.
In the beginning there were tribes that were consolidated by the most powerful chiefs or warlords into tiny nations or citystates, who then expanded their territories primarily on the basis of common language until vast borders were formed under the banners of sovereign countries.
This persisted for millennia, with one potentate conquering another, from without or within, a steady flow of turmoil dependent on the nature of the ruler, be he benevolent to his subjects and respectful of his neighbors, or more often the case, tyrannical toward his subjects and full of contempt and jealousy for neighboring rulers. A study of history will reveal to the adventurous student a plethora of events costing countless lives in the pursuit of personal regal glory and gain.
A change washed over the world emanating
from the Renaissance of the 16th
century. People engaged in rare human
endeavor– they began to think; this lead to
great inventions, engaging philosophies,
art, and challenges to authoritarian rule of
both the church and state. Legal scholars
might claim that the first great leap in protection
under the law was introduced by the Magna Carta of 1215, but it did more
to ensure the rights of nobility than the
average serf who was still at the mercy
Eventually, through violent social and political revolution, most notably in European countries and/or their colonies, rule by the people evolved as the standard by which all men held the best and most fair chance to improve their lots in life.
There were three notable forms of government that emerged over time to assault the “divine rights of kings.” Fascism not withstanding because it was little more than dictatorship with a complex ideology that quickly evolved to focus on the dictator himself. This I say noting it could be argued that fascism has already taken root in America. Nonetheless, absent a succinct ideology and plan, where simple discontent served as impetus to the revolt, some military strongman consolidated power and eventually filled the void with no small measure of violence. The anointing of kings by God was supplanted by the anointing of the masses bestowed on one who was perceived as one of their own. A good example might be the reign of Napoleon after the French Revolution.
The other two forms held a distinction
from the former: communism and
democracy were fresh concepts borne on
the provocative thought of the enlightened
educated man. If we read a thousand books
on these latter two forms of government,
a litany of distinctions compiled in a scroll
and unfurled from the top of the Empire
State building would stream down 33rd St.
to the Hudson River. Perhaps I exaggerate,
but only to accentuate the point that from
their diametric opposing philosophies,
the latter two seem to be entrenched in a
gravitational pull toward a center of commonality. ......