Friday, June 3, 2011

The Five Thousand Year Leap, Principles 24-25

(To read this series from the beginning, click here.)

Principle 24: Peace Through Strength

"To be prepared for war is one of the most effectual ways of preserving peace." ~George Washington
"If we desire to avoid insult, we must be able to repel it; if we desire to secure peace, one of the most powerful instruments of our rising prosperity, it must be known, that we are at all times ready for war." ~George Washington
Basically, let other nations be too afraid to pursue us in war because if they did, they would be utterly annihilated.  Pearl Harbor, anyone?  Surely a sleeping giant was awakened.  Even after 9/ is only the ridiculous global regulations that keep this ridiculous war on terror lasting as long as it has.  If we would be allowed to unleash our fury, this craziness would be over with quickly.

Franklin:  "The very fame of our strength and readiness would be a means of discouraging our enemies.  The way to secure peace is to be prepared for war.  They that are on their guard, and appear ready to receive their adversaries, are in much less danger of being attacked than the supine, secure and negligent."

...also: "Make yourselves sheep, and the wolves will eat you."

If you have read anything about Washington's frustration with Congress during the Revolutionary War, then you know that he battled with them over the provisions the military needed and how Congress refused to comply.  Now, we have a Congress trying to take care of national security and a President that makes cuts first to National Defense.  What?!  Granted, we need to make cuts everywhere, but I'm sure there's a few trillion that can be cut in other areas before we target our military.

The Founders were "peace-loving, but not pacifists."

Here's something that is sobering:  "The foundation for their (the Founders') security in a bustling, prosperous economy with a high standard of public morality; and they saw the necessity for a level of preparedness which discouraged attack from potential enemies by creating a rate so high that the waging of war against this nation would be an obviously unprofitable undertaking." (p.187)  We have trashed our economy, our morality is basically non-existent;  Is National Security next?

Principle 25: Avoiding Entangling Alliances

"Friendship with all...alliances with none." ~Thomas Jefferson
"...the jealousy of a free people ought to be constantly awake, since history and experience prove that foreign influence is one of the most baneful foes of republican government." ~George Washington

I think this is true.  As we become a more global society to travel to and fro throughout the earth, we begin to want foreign influence.  But we must remember that we are uniquely American and have been exceptional because of our uniqueness.  I certainly treasure the diverse traditions and people of various cultures, but we ought not to try to make our society like theirs because we are not them.  We separated ourselves out intentionally hundreds of years ago and have prospered as a result.  Now, we have so much foreign influence and so many Americans desire it that we are putting ourselves back into the bondage we once freed ourselves from.  If we were meant to be European, we ought not to ever have sought independence from England and battled to the point of great sacrifice of life in the Revolutionary War.  Yes, let's appreciate the beauty of diversity and cultures, but let's be careful to always treasure in our hearts and lives the great blessing of our beloved USA.

I had no idea that the Founders' original intent was that we would be friendly with all nations solely for the sake of having an open market, and never become involved with other countries politically.  I should've made a list from the beginning of this book regarding all the things the Founders' said we are not to do, that we have now done, and find ourselves in the nearly impossible position to back-pedal or reverse course.  So, obviously, we have become VERY politically involved with several nations.
Another one bites the dust.

I have a little bit of trouble with this idea of not allying ourselves with other countries, and yet knowing the good we must do and do it.
"So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, to him it is sin." (James 4:17)
Take the holocaust, for example.  Sure, it didn't affect us at all.  We were never in danger. But if you have the ability to save someone from a brutal murderer, ought we to step in and do it if they are totally and utterly helpless to rescue themselves?  (Good Samaritan?)  I just don't know what to think about this.  It seems the right thing to do in the case of the holocaust was to take out the Nazi agenda and rescue the Jews and others who were suffering.  I understand that there are several oppressive regimes around the world and it would not be beneficial (or possible) to be the knight in shining armor in all of these situations...mostly for the reason that we just can't afford it without putting ourselves in an economically compromising position (which we are already in anyway).  This book suggests that in a situation where a group of people are being oppressed or denied such things as food, then we may step in and provide their needs for them, but it doesn't seem to allude that we ought to deploy our resources (military force) to make the situation right.  Still, this one stumps me.

Great!  Now, I'm gonna have to figure out what I think about this whole thing! ;)  Who has time for this?  LOL!  Seriously though, we must know why we stand where we stand and be able to defend our position solidly.  And so, I will be pursuing this in the days to come.

For the next post on this book, click here.

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