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Freedom and Democracy

By       Message Alan Adaschik     Permalink
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Language defines the world within which we live because through language we define and shape ideas and concepts that are 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 accommodate 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 tranquility's sake, there is an inherent grave danger when those in government can wield this kind of 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 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?

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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 downtrodden 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, whom 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 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 of minority rights.

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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-described 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.

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Al Adaschik was born in New London, Connecticut, on June 27th, 1943. He was raised in Brooklyn, New York and attended Franklin K. Lane High School. Upon graduation, he was accepted as an engineering student at the University of Michigan in its (more...)
 

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