WASHINGTON, November 28, 2015 — At some point, Americans forgot that the principles of individualism, freedom, prosperity, and even failure rooted in our free market system were actually meant for them.
That was one of the goals of the Founding Fathers from the onset of the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia in 1787.
For four months in 1787, 55 delegates from several states met to frame a Constitution for a federal republic that would last into “remote futurity.”
Several other government models available to the framers—monarchy, dictatorship, oligarchy, parliamentary democracy, theocracy, commonwealth—were rejected for this new nation.
Today socialism, with collectivism at its core, is the biggest rival to our system. Early concepts of socialism were available to the framers, as well. They knew that socialism restricts individual liberty and stifles creativity. To their credit, they chose to create a republic.
Over the span of 200 years, the United States of America became a military superpower and a global economic and political leader.As an industrial juggernaut, the country not only armed our victorious allies, but helped them win two World Wars.
As a military power, it was second to none. Its free market system produced the largest middle class society known to modern man. Mom-and-pop businesses flourished.
Then things began to change—for the worse. People who favored other forms of governance crept into power and methodically, fundamentally changed our system. This process began in earnest with the 28th President of the United States, Woodrow Wilson. Today, progressivism and socialism have been taken to a new level by the 44th President of the United States, Barack Hussein Obama. The result: communism.
Individuality and pursuing one’s dreams have become synonymous with materialism and self-indulgence. Successful and prosperity are no longer admirable goals. Freedom of choice and enjoyment of the fruits of ones’ labor are now considered greed and self-indulgence. Individual success and widely diffused power are not only distasteful, but intolerable to those who believe that government is best suited to guide societies and should have a monopoly on power.
Many equate greedy men and women, some with criminal intent, with an economic process that was never about greed or crime. Thus was born the term “crony capitalism.” But it is not capitalism, nor even close.
To correct this aberration, American going after corporate greed have supported and even encouraged the erosion and dismantlement of our capitalist system to get back at those crony capitalists who have manipulated that system.
They confuse the capitalist system with the alliance of corrupt corporate interests and government that have undermined capitalism and our constitutional republic.
The outdated practice of bloodletting was thought to purge the body of “bad humors” or “bad blood.” It was almost always harmful to the individual and often resulted in death.
Today, we seek to bleed the rich and our free-market system. That system, though, is inextricably tied to our democracy. The destruction of our free market system will also destroy freedoms and liberties we enjoy now, harming not just the crony capitalists, but everyone. Rather than destroy the rotten apples who gamed the system, the the goal is to bleed and destroy the tree.
When America was guided by virtuous leaders and the principles established by the Founding Fathers, we thrived as a nation and rose to global prominence. Our society was imperfect, but there were mechanisms in place that could improve and keep the United States relevant, united, solvent and true to the framers’ original intent.
The greatness of ancient societies was in their ability to remain united in purpose. Once they lost their focus, they declined. Those who were not united were at war with themselves, and that finally destroyed them.
United, Athens and Sparta fought off the Persian Empire, the superpower of their time. Divided, they fought the Peloponnesian War, the turning point of Greek civilization and the start of its decline. United, Rome conquered the known world. As it forgot the virtues that made it great, it drained its vitality on internal power struggles, relied on mercenary armies, and was finally destroyed, plunging Europe into centuries of darkness.
America has had a history of being divided, united, divided and then united again. It has known a resilence few countries have. But polls today show that people think that America is in a decline.
There was a time people came to the United States to seek freedom and opportunity here. Today, illegals flood across the border seeking freebees and whatever else they can bleed from the system. This is not what makes a nation great. What is going on now in America is a recipe for failure.
Great nations like Rome and Greece died from this toxic recipe. They experienced a gradual decline in morals, political corruption, failing economies, high unemployment within the working class, constant wars and invasions. A majority of Americans seem to think that this country is headed down this slippery path.
America may be down, but many of its citizens are still in the fight. The country can bounce back if it can find ways to reunite in purpose and return to the principles of liberty and freedom, justice and prosperity. It was never meant to be an easy road to travel. Nothing worthwhile ever is.
Outside Independence Hall when the Constitutional Convention of 1787 ended, Mrs. Powel of Philadelphia asked Benjamin Franklin, “Well, Doctor, what have we got, a republic or a monarchy?” With no hesitation whatsoever, Franklin responded, “A republic, if you can keep it.” As other great civilizations have learned, greatness is hard-won by blood and sacrifice, and easily lost in luxury and sloth. As the Romans might have said, O quam cito transit gloria mundi.