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Congress of the United States, begun and held at the City of New-York, on Wednesday the fourth of March, one thousand seven hundred and eighty nine.
The Conventions of a number of the States, having at the time of their adopting the Constitution, expressed a desire, in order to prevent misconstruction or abuse of its powers, that further declaratory and restrictive clauses should be added: And as extending the ground of public confidence in the Government, will best ensure the beneficent ends of its institution.
Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America, in Congress assembled, two thirds of both Houses concurring, that the following Articles be proposed to the Legislatures of the several States, as amendments to the Constitution of the United States, all, or any of which Articles, when ratified by three fourths of the said Legislatures, to be valid to all intents and purposes, as part of the said Constitution; viz.
Articles in addition to, and Amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America, proposed by Congress, and ratified by the Legislatures of the several States, pursuant to the fifth Article of the original Constitution.
Article the First Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or a abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
Article the Second A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
Article the Third No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.
Article the Fourth The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
by Prof. John Kozy .
“Washington tends to enforce a foolish consistency. If you are someone of some prominence whose views are known publicly, then everything you have ever said in the past tends to be projected forward and everything you say today is projected backward. Any discrepancy potentially brings charges of flip-flopping or hypocrisy or selling-out or whatever. Certainly, these charges are valid in many cases, but the simple possibility that circumstances have changed or that experience or new evidence has caused one to change one’s mind seems never to be seriously entertained. The result is to force people to stick with positions they know are wrong because they less fear being foolishly consistent than being attacked for flip-flopping.” (Bruce Barlett),
When Americans adopted the notion that acting on principle, standing up and fighting for what one believes in, is virtuous, while changing one’s mind, even on sufficient evidence, is unprincipled flip-flopping and unseemly is not known, but it surely has its foundation in the American addiction to ideology which places greater value on belief than on knowledge. This notion’s absurdity should be obvious, but apparently it isn’t. Acting on erroneous principles leads to disaster, and why anyone should be willing to do that is an enigma. Yet even more sinister consequences follow from this notion. Since no prominent person, especially one holding elective office, wants to be labeled “unprincipled,” people are loath to change their views even when they know those views are wrong. Once they have decided that being “principled” is more important than being right, they have no inclination or desire to question the validity of their views by seeking the truth. The result is that these so-called principles become ossified dogmas, debate degenerates into vituperation, government becomes ineffective, and society disintegrates.
But the adoption of this notion along with the American addiction to ideology does not prevent inconsistency, and Bartlett’s comment reveals another trait of what passes for America’s intelligentsia—the curious inability to think past the first level of consequences.
What Bartlett misses is that people hold “principled” views on numerous issues. Holding a “principled” view on one issue can conflict with the “principled” views held by the same people on other issues, and if the “principled” people have no inclination or desire to validate any of their views, the inconsistencies never become apparent to them.
Two such contradictory views are held by the American political status quo, especially on the political right, but often by those termed moderate and liberal as well. One is the view that the family is the fundamental unit of society. The other is the ideological belief in the capitalist system.
by Jim Quinn
Hat tip: www.opednews.com
Do you know the enemy?
Do you know your enemy?
Well, gotta know the enemy
Violence is an enemy
Against the enemy
Violence is an energy
Bringing on the fury
The choir infantry
Revolt against the honor to obey
Know Your Enemy – Green Day
Do you know the enemy?
Is it Iraqis, Iran, the Taliban, terrorists, Muslims, Russia, North Korea, China, or our government? General Douglas MacArthur had a distinct point of view on the more likely threat.
“I am concerned for the security of our great Nation; not so much because of any threat from without, but because of the insidious forces working from within.”
William Strauss and Neil Howe wrote the book The Fourth Turning in 1997. Their theory is that history is a series of repetitive 100 year cycles with four generations living through each cycle. Each cycle and generation has many similarities, only the particular events change. We are currently in the most hazardous part of the cycle with the most volatile generation in positions of power. Strauss & Howe foresaw perilous times ahead:
“Based on historical patterns, America will hit a once-in-a-century national crisis within the decade…’like winter,’ the crisis or ‘fourth turning’ cannot be averted. It will last 20 years or so and bring hardship and upheavals similar to previous fourth turnings, such as the American Revolution, the Civil War, the Great Depression and World War II. The fourth turning is a perilous time because the result could be a new ‘golden age’ for America or the beginning of the end. It all will begin with a ‘sudden spark’ that catalyzes a crisis mood around the year 2005.”
We are currently in the midst of the Fourth Turning, an era of upheaval, a crisis in which our country will redefine its very nature and purpose. The sudden spark that catalyzed this crisis occurred on the beautiful sunny morning of September 11, 2001. The crisis reached an initial crescendo in late 2008. Many believe that the worst is behind us and the future has begun to brighten. This is highly unlikely. Previous crisis periods lasted fifteen to twenty years. The Civil War crisis was confined to five brutal years that resulted in 600,000 American deaths. The crisis in our past history that appears most analogous is the Great Depression/World War II crisis that lasted sixteen years. A financial depression caused by the Federal Reserve pumping too much credit into the financial system during the 1920′s had been considered the worst in U.S. history. The current financial crisis, caused by the Federal Reserve pumping too much credit into the financial system along with politicians turbo charging the effort by eliminating all regulation of the financial system, has led to the Greater Depression. We are likely only half way through this crisis, with tears and bloodshed yet to follow.
The global financial crisis will see the US falter in the same way the Soviet Union did when the Berlin Wall came down. The era of American dominance is over
Our gaze might be on the markets melting down, but the upheaval we are experiencing is more than a financial crisis, however large. Here is a historic geopolitical shift, in which the balance of power in the world is being altered irrevocably. The era of American global leadership, reaching back to the Second World War, is over.
You can see it in the way America’s dominion has slipped away in its own backyard, with Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez taunting and ridiculing the superpower with impunity. Yet the setback of America’s standing at the global level is even more striking. With the nationalisation of crucial parts of the financial system, the American free-market creed has self-destructed while countries that retained overall control of markets have been vindicated. In a change as far-reaching in its implications as the fall of the Soviet Union, an entire model of government and the economy has collapsed.
Ever since the end of the Cold War, successive American administrations have lectured other countries on the necessity of sound finance. Indonesia, Thailand, Argentina and several African states endured severe cuts in spending and deep recessions as the price of aid from the International Monetary Fund, which enforced the American orthodoxy. China in particular was hectored relentlessly on the weakness of its banking system. But China’s success has been based on its consistent contempt for Western advice and it is not Chinese banks that are currently going bust. How symbolic yesterday that Chinese astronauts take a spacewalk while the US Treasury Secretary is on his knees.
As I see it, the beginning of the United States of America was the most dramatic and significant episode in a long pilgrimage — the pilgrimage of the Christian idea of law, liberty, and self-government. Christianity is the master principle of our organic documents of government — the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights.
Neither Paul nor any of the other early Christians had any particular interest in social reform or political revolution. Their dedication was spiritual; yet,
at the core of Christian faith is the most revolutionary idea ever conceived: that individual man is infinitely important. Individual man is imperfect, yet God so loved him that He sent His only begotten Son to save him from sin.
After that basic Christian idea had worked for centuries in the finite minds of men, it led to an obvious conclusion: Individual man, the object of such infinite grace and mercy, is the most important creature on earth. This is the origin of the basic American political ideal: that man gets all his rights and powers from God, the Creator; that government is weaker and less important than man, because government was created by man.
It is curious that physical courage should be so common in the world and moral courage so rare.
“In Germany, they came first for the Communists, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Communist; And then they came for the trade unionists, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a trade unionist; And then they came for the Jews, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Jew; And [...]