Sunday, May 9, 2010

The Five Thousand Year Leap, part 1

The Founder's Monumental Task

(I am writing this for my own sanity so I can summarize parts of this book and not get lost in the depth of it.  I am taking it in parts because it is that intense.  And if you have read this book, I would truly appreciate your input and impressions, and corrections.  Thanks!)

Skousen does an excellent job of explaining the basis of our government and the intention of the Founders.  Now, I'm not saying it is easily understood.  True to Glenn Beck sentiment, there were plenty of moments when I thought my head would explode, my eyes would bleed, and my brain would hurt.  I spent plenty of time in the dictionary and you can see in the margin many definitions of words I just had never heard of: stratified, retinue, name a few.  I could easily re-read it several times and pick up many things I am certain I missed or just didn't fully comprehend.  Yes, my little brain is taking on a huge task in reading this book.  But, I hunger for the truth of what our government should be.  This book causes it all to make sense and scares the living daylights out of me in realization of how very far away we are from the Founder's original intent.  I could easily have underlined every single word for the importance of the message, but I restrained myself so I can just pick out some highlights.

What we view as "right" and "left" on the political/government spectrum is far from what the Founders viewed as "right" and "left."  Right is anarchy.  Left is tyranny.  And we must land somewhere in between.  Take a wild guess where we are now.  The Founders placed us practically in anarchy...that is how much they wanted a government of, by, for the people.  They set us 3/4 of the way toward anarchy...not total anarchy because there must be accountability and a few things should be regulated, but for the most part, we should be self-governed.  The importance of local government (starting with your own family) astounded me, but makes perfect sense.  If you can't rule your own household well, how can you rule a nation.  It really encouraged me to be involved in my community.  I only plan the town parade but it is a place where I can serve my neighbors.  Jamie just became a board member for the fire department.  These things matter.  Being an upstanding citizen matters.  Being a leader in your church matters.  Be a good example to others who are watching you.
The Founders placed us approximately halfway between People's Law and No Law.

The Founders, specifically Thomas Jefferson, were deeply concerned with how easily this ideal could be compromised.  We, as a nation, have become apathetic and complacent voters.  And it is destroying us.  We have thought that since we are Americans, partakers of "the dream", that we could never ever become participants in a nightmare.  We are in the nightmare right now.  We must turn the tables.  If we continue in the direction we have been heading, we will soon be a total government, minimal freedom, all regulation country.  Do something.  If you don't know what to do, click here for some ideas.  There is plenty you can do.

Another thing that was awesome for me to read was that the Founders came from vastly differing backgrounds, vocations, religious beliefs, and spheres of education.  Yet they were all "remarkably well-read" and that is why they were so incredibly brilliant.  As a home schooling mom who loves books and learning from them, I found this incredibly encouraging.  We live in a culture that has brain-washed us into thinking that the only "smart" ones are those that attend universities.  Universities are brain-washing American students into socialists.  Abraham Lincoln had the equivalent of one year of school.  He was a lawyer and the president.  But, he was well-read.  Pick up a book...and learn! 

Also, the Constitutional Convention took more than 4 months.  Why?  Because when they disagreed, they continued to work together until everyone could feel at peace with the ultimate outcome.  And we think "reaching across the aisle" is so noble???

Finally, "America's Three-Headed Eagle" is genius!  But this post is already long enough so I won't go there.  

Read this book!  It's really cool!

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