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Freedom & Democracy: Illusion by Stealth
By Alan Adaschik <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Octobert 23, 2004
Original title: Freedom & Democracy
Language defines the world within which we live because through language we define and shape ideas and concepts; the basis of what we think. In turn, what people think determines how they behave. Therefore, controlling the behavior of people is simply a matter of shaping their world by defining the concepts that form the basis of their thoughts. There are three ways to accomplish this:
Redefine concepts and ideas slowly over time to accom-modate desired changes.
Allow unwanted concepts and ideas to fade into obscurity.
Prevent undesirable concepts and ideas from developing.
In America today, the process of controlling people through language has been developed to a fine art by those in government with the cooperation of the media, our educational institutions, and the entertainment industry. The use of the socially acceptable phrase "politically correct" exemplifies this. In the final analysis, politically correct thoughts are nothing more than those acceptable to the ruling establishment. The unfortunate aspect of this situation is that they are correct only because they are acceptable. Merit, reality, principle, reason, logic, and/or constitutional concerns have nothing to do with determining their degree of acceptability. During the cold war, communists subscribed to the notion of politically correct thought, the only difference was that we called their politically correct thoughts propaganda or brain washing.
The end result of a successful thought control process is the general acceptance of change because those affected are not aware that a change took place. The situation changed, but the description of the situation changed along with it and to someone not paying attention, nothing changed. While this is all well and good for harmony and tranquillity’s sake, but there is an inherent grave danger when those in government can wield this kind power. It enables them to make changes at our expense and not in our best interest. This is why our Founding Fathers added an amendment procedure to our Constitution. They strongly believed that it is morally repugnant for government officials to use stealth to make fundamental changes to how we our governed and that the only acceptable way for such changes to be made is by informed consent of the citizenry after a careful consideration of the implications associated with the change being considered.
Unfortunately, in the United States of America today, governmental change by stealth is the order of the day and things have progressed to the point where not only is consent of the governed a dysfunctional concept, it has been almost entirely replaced by deception and illusion. We are truly now a nation of the con and conned and we euphemize this lamentable state of affairs by calling it "politics". Unfortunately, the end result of the "politics" we are talking about is that not only have we been robbed of our heritage and birthright, we are now being ravaged and looted economically with the complicity and cooperation of those entrusted to protect us.
The above statements and conclusions are anathema to most Americans which does not in any way reflect upon their validity or truth, but instead, indicates how successful the change makers have been in achieving their ends. This can be clearly established to anyone’s satisfaction by a careful examination of two of our most revered and sacred concepts; freedom and democracy. These words exemplify the very essence of Americanism and they role off our lips as sacred and inviolate truths. Millions of Americans have died for the sake of these words and it is taken for granted that those who made this supreme sacrifice have not died in vain, but have they?
The "real" truth, out there for anyone to see if they just open their eyes, is that what we call freedom today is not the same freedom we enjoyed in the past and this Nation is democratic in name only. If our Founding Fathers suddenly arose from their graves and surveyed our present situation, to a man, they would hold that not only are we not free and not a democracy, but instead a subjugated and down trodden people.
Freedom is an easy concept to understand. One is free when able to do as one wishes. However, there are obvious limitations to our freedom; the first one being physical reality. We are free to jump off a building if we wish, but if we do, there is a severe consequence for exercising this kind of freedom. Similarly, other people are a limitation to our freedom. An individual’s freedom ends where another person’s begins. From this it necessarily follows that the more people around, the less freedom everyone has. This is why people in a young and relatively un-populated United States enjoyed far more freedom that Americans do today. But this is not why our Founding Fathers would conclude we are not free.
To understand their point of view, it is necessary to realize that there are two distinct aspects to freedom; personal freedom and political freedom. Personal freedom is the freedom to make personal choices such as what channel to watch on television, what to eat for dinner, who to marry, whether to take a walk or not, etc. However, political freedom was far more important to the Founders than personal freedom because they clearly understood that the only way to have and ensure personal freedom was to protect and preserve political freedom. They believed that without political freedom, personal freedom is at risk because it can be compromised at any time. Therefore, when drafting our Constitution, foremost in the Founders minds was to create a document that ensured and protected political freedom. As an after thought, they later added the Bill Of Rights to ensure that some highly important personal freedoms were specifically protected.
What is political freedom? Political freedom is the inalienable right of self-government and it was identified by Abraham Lincoln when he described our government as being "of the people, by the people, and for the people". Unfortunately, in the America today, most people do not realize the significance of these words and only think of them as a historical curiosity, but in truth, they are the very touchstones of political freedom.
"Of the people", means that private citizens hold office, not professional politicians. "By the people", means the people as a group determine how they will be governed and this function is most emphatically not the providence of elected officials alone. "For the people", means that our government is our servant and not our master. This is what the Constitution of the United States of America is all about, this is the primary goal the Founders had in mind when drafting it, and these are the principles they enshrined therein. Underscoring these principals and necessary to ensure their perpetuation are our inalienable right to free speech, our inalienable right to petition government for the redress of grievances, and our inalienable right to hold those in government accountable for their actions under the Constitution. In addition to the foregoing, the final element necessary to ensure freedom is the two underlying principles of enlightened democracy; majority rule tempered by the protection minority rights.
The issue on hand that would be of major concern to our Founding Fathers and should be to us, is how well does the government we presently live under measure up to the above describe principles? Unfortunately, upon examination, the answer to this question is painfully obvious; it does not.
First and foremost, we do not have a government that is "of the people". Instead, our elected representatives are lifelong professional politicians whose first order of business is feathering their own nest and protecting the status quo. However, this is not the worst of it because in the United States of America today it takes a tremendous amount of money to run for national office. Therefore, in keeping with a desire to look out for their own interests, the very first order of business of a professional politician is to ensure that those providing him with money and support continue to do so. The only way to do this is to do their bidding. No one with power and influence contributes to and supports politicians so they can independently vote their conscience in the best interests of this Nation and its people. Therefore, the real first order of business of a professional politician is to vote to please those who contribute money and do favors for them. Doing what is best for the people of this Nation is secondary.
"By the people"
Instead of living under the government created and bestowed upon us by the Founders, how our government functions and operates has been changed through the years, not by amendment as required by our Constitution, but, wrongfully, by simple legislative acts. In other words, the government we presently live under is not the brainchild of our Founding Fathers as we delude ourselves into believing, but instead, the handiwork of professional politicians whose loyalties and motives have just been discussed.
"For the people"
A healthy economy is in everyone’s best interest and many politicians, especially Republicans, subscribe to the trickle down theory of economics as follows; when corporations earn profits, for the most part, they are reinvested in the economy thus creating jobs and adding to the prosperity of all concerned. This kind of thinking is used by politicians to justify their catering to special interests. True, it is self-serving to a degree, but in the past such thinking had validity and did no real harm to the Nation. However, this is no longer true. Special interests and the corporations they represent have become globalized. In other words, our situation is now such that those who call the tune that politicians dance to are concerned with global issues and have no concern for the well-being of Americans and the American worker. This being the case, the trickle down theory as far as Americans are concerned, is bankrupt. When politicians cater to special interests and help corporations earn money from Americans, this money is invested over seas where it is cheaper to do business. The end result of this is a steady flow of wealth out of the country that is robbing us of our prosperity. Our elected representatives pretend to be for us, but in deference to those who back them, knowingly act to allow this to happen belying what they pretend to be.
Freedom of speech
It takes great courage for someone to speak out against what is wrong with government in America today and this does just mean running the risk of being ridiculed or labeled politically incorrect. Speaking freely about how we are governed in the United States of America today will affect your job, opportunities for employment, opportunities for advancement through promotion, and your ability to earn a living for you and your family. If the consequences for speaking freely are this severe, then free speech is not free and has a terrible cost associated with it.
In America today, writing to elected officials is a waste of time for matters of substance because professional politicians cater to special interests when it comes to deciding such matters. This being the case, our final redress should be the Courts. However, the Courts have wrongfully and unconstitutionally ruled that citizens alone or in concert have no legal recourse over the actions of Congress that affect all citizens equally as a group. It is more than ironic that the Judicial Branch of our government which is constitutionally tasked with ensuring that the other branches of government abide by constitutional precept, has acted in an official capacity to ensure that the other branches of government do not have to and that no one, not even all of us acting together, can do anything about it. Not only is this a gross and flagrant violation of our Constitution, it abrogates one of our most important inalienable rights.
Americans can no longer achieve redress of their grievances by petitioning government officials or by suing them in a court of law. Thus, we have no means of holding them accountable other than voting them out of office. However, voting them out office will only produce results if there are alternative candidates who hold different views from the incumbent official that coincide with ours. While some third party candidates offer such options, the simple truth of a matter is that the two major parties have such a lock on the electorate and elective process, that address addressing issues about how we are governed through the ballot box is impossible. The inescapable result of all this is that elected government officials are accountable to no one other than the special interests that help get them elected and keep them in office.
The only thing that the majority really decides in America today is whether Twiddle Dum or Twiddle Dee will hold office. However, average citizens have absolutely no say in who becomes Twiddle Dum or Twiddle Dee and once either one is elected, as far as our system of Government is concerned, they are one and the same person. Furthermore, there are many important actions taken by our government today that, if the truth were known, the majority would be dead set against, yet our government is able to take these actions anyway.
Minority rights in America have come to mean rights solely associated with ones color, creed, gender, sexual preference, or national origin and no longer include protecting the rights of an individual against majority preferences and excesses. Not only are the minority rights of an individual no longer afforded any special kind of protection by government, we have also been stripped of our God given inalienable rights. Our perception of rights and minority rights has changed and because of this, we docilely accept a government that instead of protecting our rights, extends or takes them away at will.
In conclusion, Americans are free to go to the bathroom when the need arises, but when it comes to enjoying the elements that comprise political freedom, all of them have been compromised and are essentially dysfunctional. Yet, we go about our business thinking this is not the case. We think we are free because we confuse personal freedom with political freedom and no one in government, the media, or our educational institutions will risk their jobs or future well being by clearing up our misconceptions. We have lost the only thing that ensures our personal freedom; our political freedom and an inevitable result is that we are now losing our personal freedom as well.
If we have been robbed of our political freedom by those elected to serve us, what then does this say about the kind of democracy we have? No American would intentionally vote away our political freedom, yet it is gone and has been taken from us without our consent. This makes a mockery of democracy and establishes that the democracy we have is only an illusion.
For several generations, this nation was locked in a cold war with communism. Indeed, we called our selves the free world and looked upon those living in the Soviet Bloc as enslaved and down trodden. The question is, how free are we today in comparison to those who used to live under Communism. The truth is that we are now not much better off than the citizens of the Soviet Union during the cold war. We have a two party system that in matters of substance is one party, we no longer have inalienable rights, we no longer own the fruits of our own labor, our property is not safe and secure from confiscation and seizure, we are being systematically robbed of our wealth and heritage, and we can be arrested and held without being charged or tried at the discretion of government bureaucrats. Where then is the freedom that we take such pride in having?
Americans are no longer free and democracy is just an illusion kept alive by the ruling establishment so they can have their way with us. This would be the verdict of our Founding Fathers if they were alive today and this is the verdict that would be reached by any intelligent individual who impartially examines our present situation
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