11 February 2008

The Language of Liberty

Dr. Samuel Johnson Pointed out "that we hear the loudest yelps for liberty among the drivers of negroes" at the time of the revolution. Thomas Jefferson stated that "all men were created equal", yet he had 187 slaves. Patrick Henry screamed "give me liberty or give me death", yet was also a slave owner. Was Mr. Henry as willing to give his slaves liberty?

Add in George Washington and most of the Southern rebels.

Another cry was "no taxation without representation" which came from Massachusetts. Rather humourous given that the colonies were taxed at a much lower rate than those back in Mother England. Even funnier that the places this cry was heard have high taxes post rebellion (mostly due to the debts incurred from said rebellion). They don't call it Taxachusetts for nothing.

Self-representation and we tax you like the Beatles' song Taxman ("one for you, nineteen for me
'Cause I'm the taxman,...Should five per cent appear too small, Be thankful I don't take it all"). Of course, quite a bit of this money goes toward a standing army, from which the Second amendment is supposed to protect me. We should have a citizens' militia. Of course, it is better to pay high taxes than have to give up time for militia duties.

The "founding fathers" were also not fans of Democracy. Typical contemporary writings describe it as mob rule. The word had a similar connotation to how we use anarchy today. Our friends who were screaming for liberty while screwing their slaves (Old Tom and Sally Hemmings) were all for representation by property owning white males and sod the masses. Fortunately, property was so cheap in North America that most white males could fit into this category.

I draw your attention to the Impeachment of Samuel Chase for criticising voting reforms as "mobocracy". You might also do well to check out my previous post on this subject.

The basic gist of this is that the common man would be considered the mob, or rabble. No where in the Constitution is the word "democracy" used. This is a republic, a vastly different system. The reason Dubious Bush became president had nothing to do with popular vote, but the electoral college. Check out that institution.

Republics expect duties from their citizens which modern libertarians seem to miss.

So, don't let the language of liberty obfuscate the issue. As my dad loved to point out the Soviet Constitution sounded very egalitarian as well.

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