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Philosophy

Return to Common Sense

July 4, 2014

Section: Introduction - Philosophy

United States began with a fine Constitution and we now need to use our “Common Sense” to force our elected officials to return to its underlying principles that government serves the people, and not vice versa, to reinforce the exceptionalism that makes this country great!

When the people fear the government, there is tyranny; when the government fears the people, there is liberty.” Thomas Jefferson

 

Philosophy (Background, Issues, Objectives):

Declaration of Independence recorded our founding principles.

o   Among them are Life, individual Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.

Founders based Constitution on Judeo-Christian tenets.

Federal government was designed to serve the states.

Government was designed to serve the people.

Government was defined as a representative republic with three, equal, balanced branches.

Constitution established a federal government of limited powers, enumerated in Article I, section 8.

States rights are reaffirmed by 9th and 10th Amendments to the Constitution.

Revolutionary War era essays helped sell the ideas of the new republic.

 

Principles:

America, as defined by the Constitution is not a democracy.

Fundamental American Principles:

o   Individual freedom of action.

o   Right to think for yourself.

o   Trust in your own judgment.

o   Freedom and property are inextricably linked.

·         Equality – equal justice under law.

o   Judiciary interprets, not creates law

o   Strong families

·         Fraternity – serve the common good

o   Serve the majority, while respecting the minority

o   Encourage responsible behavior

·         Democratic – representative

o   Legislature was composed of citizen representatives (no professional politicians).

o   Limited government.

·         We live in a competitive world.

o   Freedom to pursue happiness; does not guarantee achievement of happiness.

o   Individuals are free to make life decisions; and live with their consequences.

o   Some people win; some people lose.

·         We believe in America’s exceptionalism.

o   Assume problems and mistakes are exceptions.

Ten Principles of Freedom:

  1. No other human being can tell me what to do, without my consent.
  2. No other human being can compel me to serve what he has created, without my consent.
  3. No other human being can compel me to enter any obligation, without my consent.
  4. No other human being can compel me to work for him, or take my income or property, without my consent.
  5. The family, the union of a man and a woman to create new life, being the only discernible purpose of life, and the only means of perpetuating human life, is sacrosanct.
  6. Do not use or threaten violence.
  7. Do not cause or be party to a betrayal, sexual or otherwise, of your own or any other person’s family obligations.
  8. Do not interfere with the property of others.
  9. Don’t be dishonest.
  10. Do not use your freedom to interfere with the freedom of others.

The Idea of America:

·         Man is created with certain inalienable rights, including Life, Liberty, and Property.

·         Man has the right to self-government, the right to be left alone, the right to the fruit of his labors, the right to dispose of his property as he sees fit.

·         All men are created equal under God and the law, and that no man can take away these rights, and that the sole duty of government is to protect them.

·         The government must be accountable to The People, not the people to the government.

·         Ours is to be a nation of laws, not of men, and that no one is above the law.

·         Justice is blind, and man must be virtuous if he is to be free.

·         Human rights come from the creator and cannot be abrogated by men.

In 1918, Congress adopted the American's Creed.

Core rights and liberties are contained in the founding documents.

·         Never let the force of a majority take away the rights of an individual.

·         Establish no right that is not given to all equally or that obligates another citizen for anything more than non-interference.

·         Measure the success of government, not by how many services it provides, but by how many citizens are free and effective in meeting their own needs.

·         Never sacrifice tomorrow's liberties for today's temporary needs for security.

·         Protect the property rights of citizens to enjoy and control the fruits of their own labor and investments.

·         Refuse to expend the money of constituents for benevolence best done by individual charities or local governments.

·         Promote and preserve a sound, free-enterprise economy and protect economic freedoms--the freedom to work, the freedom to enjoy the rewards one earns, the freedom to own and control one's property, and the freedom to participate in a free market.

·         Protect the right of individual self-defense, the spirit of resistance in defense of liberty, and the right to bear arms.

·         Protect "we the people" from the abuse of government by creating checks and balances between branches that prevent hasty change, unnecessary regulations, or government tyranny.

·         Ensure and promote the free expression of religion without ever establishing any state religion or denomination.

·         Ensure freedom of speech that allows people to criticize their government, express unpopular opinions, or even express offensive comments without fear of government reprisal or criminal persecution.

·         Establish, fund and maintain a vibrant and effective military force appropriate for the time and the threat that preserves the security of our country.

·         Finally, ensure that all citizens, from the poorest to the richest, will equally pay their fair share of the cost of maintaining our Constitutional Republic - freedom isn't free.

Getting America Right has defined six simple questions to consider before supporting any policy:

Government Minimalist Guidelines:

·         The need for government in a society varies inversely to the sophistication and affluence of its people.

·         Government is a high-cost ay of doing anything.

·         The less government does, the better off we are.

·         Government cannot spend its way out of the economic hole dug by taxes.

·         Since we need so little and the cost is so high, why do we have so much government?

·         How to make and keep government small?

o   Tell the voters the truth about the high cost of taxes weighed against the often low benefit of spending.

o   Force Congress to adhere to a cost-benefit budget procedure, conducted in the open with full public notice and voter participation.

o   Give everyone a “tax dividend” when spending reduction targets are met and send the bill for additional taxes when spending goes up.

Americanism is freedom founded on the power of the individual, and his ability to achieve without undue government interference.

Reasons to be grateful and proud to live in the United States.

The Seven Reasons America Became a Great Power

 

Recommendations:

Limit size and intrusion of federal government to less than 20% of GDP.

·         Ensure general welfare clause is not interpreted as an enumerated power to expand government.

Enact the Enumerated Powers Act to link all legislation to appropriate constitutional authority.

·         Require each Act of Congress contain a concise and definite statement of the constitutional authority relied upon for the enactment of each portion of that Act.

Hold Congress responsible for their words and actions.

Champion those who serve the country honorably and make a real difference.

 

References:

Taking America Back” by Joseph Farah published by Cumberland House Publishing, 2003.

The 5000 Year Leap” by W. Cleon Skousen published by National Center for Constitutional Studies, 2006.

The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Constitution” by Kevin R. C. Gutzman published by Regnery Publishing, 2007.

Arguing with Idiots” by Glenn Beck published by Simon & Schuster, Inc., 2009.

The Citizen’s Constitution” by Seth Lipsky published by Basic Books, 2009.

Common Sense” by Glenn Beck published by Simon & Schuster, Inc., 2009.

Liberty and Tyranny” by Mark R. Levin published by Threshold Editions, 2009.

The Politically Incorrect Guide to The Founding Fathers” by Brion McClanahan published by Regnery Publishing, 2009.

Saving Freedom” by Jim DeMint published by Fidelis Books, 2009.

America 3.0” by James C. Bennett and Michael J. Lotus published by Encounter Books, 2013.

 The Purpose and Limits of Government” by Roger Pilon dated 1999 published by The Cato Institute at http://www.cato.org/pubs/catosletters/cl-13.pdf .

L’Etat Cest Vous” by Phil Brennan dated August 20, 2003 published by News Max at http://www.newsmax.com/archives/articles/2003/8/20/12944.shtml .

An Ownership Society Fosters Responsibility, Liberty, Prosperity” by Tom G. Plamer dated January 13, 2004 published by The Cato Institute at http://www.cato.org/pub_display.php?pub_id=6518&print=Y .

Competition in Government” by Christopher DeMuth dated October 6, 2004 published by American Enterprise Institute at http://www.aei.org/include/news_print.asp?newsID=21341 .

How to Read the Constitution: Self Government and the Jurisprudence of Originalism” by Keith E. Whittington dated May 1, 2006 published by The Heritage Foundation at http://www.heritage.org/Research/PoliticalPhilosophy/upload/96515_1.pdf .

Revolutionary No. 19” by Paul Jacob dated December 3, 2006 published by Town Hall at http://www.townhall.com/columnists/PaulJacob/2006/12/03/revolutionary_no_19 .

“Believe it or Not: An American’s Creed” by Robert Klein Engler dated February 10, 2007 published by American Daily at http://www.americandaily.com/article/17630 .

“Born in the USA” by Nicholas Eberstadt dated April 19, 2007 published by American Enterprise Institute at http://www.aei.org/publications/pubID.25988,filter.social/pub_detail.asp .

We Know So Much Better Than We Do” by William D. Bailey dated June 21, 2007 published by American Daily at http://www.americandaily.com/article/19320 .

’I can…,’ a Conservative Philosophy” by Paul A. Ibbertson dated August 18, 2007 published by American Daily at http://www.americandaily.com/article/19962 .

Liberty Defined” by F.A. Harper dated August 18, 2007 published by Ludwig Von Mises Institute at http://www.mises.org/story/2593 .

Government for the Good of the People: Ten Questions about Freedom, Virtue, and the Role of Government” by Ryan Messmore dated September 17, 2007 published by The Heritage Foundation at http://www.heritage.org/Research/Religion/wm1620.cfm .

Life, Liberty and Freedom: The Greatest Common Good on Earth” by JB Williams dated September 20, 2007 published by American Daily at http://www.americandaily.com/article/20328 .

The Ten Principles of Freedom: Conclusions, and Some Observations” by Joseph BH McMillan dated September 28, 2007 published by Intellectual Conservative at http://www.intellectualconservative.com/2007/09/28/the-ten-principles-of-freedom-conclusion-and-some-observations/ .

What Separation of Powers Means for Constitutional Government” by Charles R. Kesler dated December 17, 2007 published by The Heritage Foundation at http://www.heritage.org/Research/Thought/fp17.cfm .

“Government’s New Minimalist Mission: ‘Just Keep Us Safe And Leave Us Alone’” by Ernest S. Christian and Gary A. Robbins dated February 26, 2008 published by Investor’s Business Daily at http://www.ibdeditorials.com/IBDArticles.aspx?id=288920217167446 .

What makes America different?” by Henry Lamb dated July 6, 2008 published by American Daily at http://www.americandaily.com/article/22555 .

Enumerated Powers Act Brings the Constitution to Capitol Hill” by Andrew M. Grossman dated July 30, 2008 published by The Heritage Foundation at http://www.heritage.org/Research/LegalIssues/lm29.cfm .

For the General Welfare of the Country” J.R. Dieckmann dated August 18, 2008 published by The Conservative Voice at http://www.theconservativevoice.com/article/33970.html .

Credo in Unam Nationem, Sub Deo-Redux” by Geoffrey P. Hunt dated November 8, 2008 published by American Thinker at http://www.americanthinker.com/2008/11/credo_in_unam_nationem_sub_deo_1.html .

A Day for Rights” by Paul Jacob dated December 14, 2008 published by Town Hall at http://townhall.com/columnists/PaulJacob/2008/12/14/a_day_for_rights .

“The optimum government” by Richard Rahn dated January 29, 2009 published by The Washington Times at http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2009/jan/29/the-optimum-government/ .

The Europe Syndrome and the Challenge to American Exceptionalism” by Charles Murray dated March 16, 2009 published by American Magazine at http://www.american.com/archive/2009/march-2009/the-europe-syndrome-and-the-challenge-to-american-exceptionalism .

Texas guv: ‘Feds have become oppressive’” dated April 14, 2009 published by World Net Daily at http://www.worldnetdaily.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=94928 .

The U.S. Constitution: An Agreement by States” by Mark Roth dated September 17, 2010 published by American Thinker at http://www.americanthinker.com/2010/09/the_us_constitution_an_agreeme.html .

Twelve Great Reasons to Love a Great Country” by Bill Bennett dated December 6, 2010 published by National Review Online at http://www.nationalreview.com/articles/254468/twelve-great-reasons-love-great-country-william-j-bennett-brjohn-t-e-cribb .

Is America Exceptional?” by Kim R. Holmes dated November 15, 2011 published by The Heritage Foundation at http://www.heritage.org/research/lecture/2011/12/is-america-exceptional .

Exceptional” by Douglas V. Gibbs dated January 2, 2012 published by Canada Free Press at http://www.canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/43636 .

In Search of Americanism” by Ned Ryun dated May 2012 published by The American Spectator at http://spectator.org/archives/2012/05/07/in-search-of-americanism .

Whatever Happened to Common Sense?” by Dennis Lund dated December 5, 2012 published by American Thinker at http://www.americanthinker.com/2012/12/whatever_happened_to_common_sense.html .

The Origins of Our American Creed” by Brian Vanyo dated February 5, 2013 published by Real Clear History at http://www.realclearhistory.com/articles/2013/02/05/the_origins_of_american_creed_50.html .”

The Meaning of Our American Creed” by Brian Vanyo dated February 25, 2013 published by Real Clear History at http://www.realclearhistory.com/articles/2013/02/25/the_meaning_of_our_american_creed_63.html .

Why the Federal Government?” by Mike Foil dated April 1, 2013 published by Canada Free Press at http://canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/54574 .

The Dangers of Democracy” by Todd Keister dated June 21, 2013 published by American Thinker at http://www.americanthinker.com/2013/06/the_dangers_of_democracy.html .

Founding Principles Worth Guiding America Then and Now” by Terry Paulson dated August 12, 2013 published by Town Hall at http://townhall.com/columnists/terrypaulson/2013/08/12/founding-principles-worth-guiding-america-then-and-now-n1660478 .

The 7 Reasons America Became a Great Power” by Dennis Prager dated April 1, 2014 published by Town Hall at http://townhall.com/columnists/johnhawkins/2014/04/01/the-7-reasons-america-became-a-great-power-n1817340 .

The Progressive Assault on the Legacy of Independence Day” by Bruce Thornton dated July 4, 2014 published by Front Page Magazine at http://www.frontpagemag.com/2014/bruce-thornton/the-progressive-assault-on-the-legacy-of-independence-day/ .

 

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