Following the crisis in Venezuela (because it can happen in the U.S.A.)

Thanks to the Communist-Socialist ascendency in Venezuela, what was once the wealthiest Latin American country now has many of its people adjusting to shortages of food, water and life-giving energy needed to heat and light their homes and neighborhoods. Common prescriptions and life-saving medicines are almost impossible to obtain there. Widespread hopelessness has led to a spike in suicides. Can this happen in the United States? The answer is: Yes.

Venezuela should be a warning to all who are mesmerized by socialists like Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Socialism, and those who sell it will wreak havoc on our nest eggs and living standards. Look at the buying power of those who have worked hard and saved their money in Venezuela. Their life savings will hardly buy a loaf of bread due to hyperinflation. This is not opinion. Investigate for yourself.

In Venezuela there is nothing

This Venezuelan woman holds a sign that says, “In Venezuela there is nothing.”

Beware of politicians that promise “free” stuff like college tuition or healthcare or other shiny giveaways in return for votes. U. S. Senator Cory Booker has recently proposed that the government force taxpayers to award payments of $50,000 to poor people as a means of raising them out of poverty. Don’t be weak – don’t take that poisoned bait. If somebody gets something “free” it is because somebody else worked hard to pay for it, or will have to in the future. Think of it this way, you work hard year after year, but under socialism someone else in government decides that you are too successful and that some lazy ass shit is entitled (in the supposed causes of fairness, equality, and social justice) to what you have worked so hard to earn. (Of course, not all people in poverty are “lazy ass shits,” but there are many.) Or perhaps this or that politician and his supporters argue that needy refugees are entitled to the wealth you have worked so hard for and saved. A reason will always conveniently be found to argue why government planners are more qualified to control the assets of its citizens. Your wealth used to be your property, but under socialism, your property will be controlled and squandered by the state. Large scale redistributions of wealth lead to large-scale decreases in productivity – everyone in that society becomes poorer. This increases equality not in luxury, but rather equality in poverty.

To put it in simple terms, essentially socialists put their faith in government to solve societal problems which is done at the expense of freedom and individual and local decision-making. Opposite the socialists are those who want to place finite limits on the power of government. They do not put blind faith in politicians and bureaucrats because history teaches that rulers with too much power become tyrants and abusers of the people. These anti-socialists instead value individual liberty, and understand that the free association of individuals into charities etc. is a much more effective means of improving society.

Mountains of garbage in the capitol city of Caracas

One result of the socialist government’s mismanagement – mountains of garbage are accumulating in the streets of the capitol city of Caracas.

In 2013, when President Nicolás Maduro was elected, one of his campaign promises was that he would approve an increase in the minimum wage that would be between 38% and 45% by the end of the year. What Maduro and most of the people who have supported him do not understand is that wage increases without corresponding productivity increases will lead to inflation. In Venezuela it is even worse than that – the socialist government’s takeover of private industry and the gross mismanagement of it has led to a large-scale decrease in productivity. Under these self-inflicted circumstances wage increases will never keep up with monetary hyperinflation. Venezuelan money is practically worthless. This has destroyed the life savings of any and all Venezuelans who have worked hard and saved.

Below are excerpts translated from a Spanish-language website. Notice the obviously flawed rhetoric that focuses on the ethical and moral reasons for imposing socialism – the desire for greater equality. Sounds familiar doesn’t it? Well it only took 14 years for Hugo Chavez and his socialists to ruin the lives on 32 million Venezuelans.

Excerpts:

Bolivarian Socialist Project leaves hunger and misery in Venezuela
Thousands of Venezuelans migrate to Latin American countries in search of better living conditions

Since 1999, Venezuela has suffered from the deterioration of its productive system, as a result of the application of social, economic and political programs that, far from favoring the lives of its citizens, have left them submerged in conditions of critical poverty. This process of economic collapse, initiated by the ex-president Hugo Chávez has its continuation in the government plan of the current president Nicolás Maduro Moros, with its disastrous consequences for the 32 million Venezuelan inhabitants.

Little by little more Venezuelan citizens were added to the Chávez government, in view of the need to live in conditions of social equality … by a socialist model that would provide everyone conditions of social equality.

The focus of Chávez’s government program was based on the full realization of 21st century socialism… through the ethical and moral rebirth of the Venezuelan nation. This restructuring had at its roots the fusion of the values ​​and principles of the humanist currents of socialism. Its ultimate goal was the supreme social happiness for every Venezuelan. (Ahhhh…. dream on….)

In 2013, Venezuelans were overwhelmed by a deepening economic crisis, which has left them unemployed, victims of organized crime, facing the loss of the purchasing power of the monthly salary of families, extremely high inflation and no food supply and of medicines. Currently, a significant number of Venezuelans are unable to meet their primary needs and live in conditions of extreme poverty.

Here are some English-language stories that will help explain what has been going on with Venezuela.

https://www.csis.org/analysis/venezuelas-presidency-jeopardy

https://www.bloombergquint.com/onweb/suicides-surge-in-a-hopeless-venezuela#gs.0aGIqWI

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-venezuela-femsa/femsa-to-lay-off-2000-venezuela-workers-amid-crisis-union-idUSKCN1MW2G9

https://www.apnews.com/ffce652508c44d4184d88a921b582709

When reading this keep in mind that Chavez came to power in 1999 – coincidence?:

http://elpitazo.info/reportajes/sin-servicios-miguel-gladys-sanchez-se-nos-va-la-vida-esperando-llegue-agua/

Ocasio-Cortez: ¡Viva el socialismo!

So, the pretty, young Latina is a blazing star that has the left-wing media foaming at its mouth. Ocasio-Cortez may have opinions, but she is not a well-informed person when it comes to politics and socialism as a matter of policy. But she is photogenic. She has a nice smile. In other words, she is nothing short of a superficial know-nothing. She has pretty much proved this every time she has opened her mouth. It is telling that this hollow political candidate is so highly celebrated by the progressives in media, academia and Hollywood. It is a reflection on them.

Alexandria Ocasio Cortez

Ocasio-Cortez is a socialist candidate for Congress from New York. She will have lots of coaching in the future, but it has been pretty obvious that there is very little, if any, substance behind her slogans, pronouncements and platitudes.

Human nature will always be at work when it comes to flirting and sometimes embracing socialism. A large percentage of people simply cannot resist the temptation of “free” stuff, whether it’s the promise of free phones or healthcare or college tuition or whatever. This is because a large percentage of the population is ignorant of history and economics. But in this type of mind, the history and economics of socialism and its effects are unimportant – in fact they don’t count. What counts is how irresponsible politicians stimulate their imaginations to think how things could be (but never will be).

As far as socialism and electing socialists is concerned, a socialist is another word for a statist – one who thinks the state should be used to regulate people’s behavior down to the minutest detail in order to bring order and prosperity, etc. to the community as a whole. The problem is that those who you hand over the reins of socialistic power to are flawed human beings like everyone else. And as Lord Acton pointed out, “Absolute power corrupts absolutely.”

Once a people forfeit their individual rights to the rights of the state, which is also one result of socialism, they often lose their ability to change the government that has begun abusing them.

One only has to turn to Venezuela to see the ruinous effects of socialism. Many people there no longer have access to the basics for survival like bread and medicine. There has been a surge in Venezuelans committing suicide. Young mothers have turned to prostitution to support their families. People who want to reverse societal decay are murdered or imprisoned by their government and its cartel friends.

Several Americans have contributed to this humanitarian tragedy by their support for the late Venezuelan dictator who started it all, Hugo Chavez. Where are these boosters of socialism now? (Oliver Stone, Sean Penn, Michael Moore)

Will someone in the media ask Ocasio-Cortez why socialism has not worked in Venezuela? Doubtful. Jimmy Kimmel? Alec Baldwin? Maybe Rachel Maddow? Not that long-ago Venezuela was the wealthiest of all Latin American countries. Now it is a land of misery and starvation thanks to the socialist government there. But the Venezuelan people are reaping what they have sown. The socialist Hugo Chavez was democratically elected by the people. When Chavez asked for more dictatorial power the people gave it to him. Venezuela is yet further proof that democracies are capable of committing suicide. This should be a warning for all to see. Resist socialism. Save the United States from the fate of so many others who were tempted by the false promises of socialism.

Frotho

 

Mom Daughter flee Venezuela

A mother and her daughter flee Venezuela – “I’ll walk in my broken shoes.” Thanks to socialist President Nicolas Maduro and his cronies, nearly 2 million people have fled poverty, hunger, crime and hyperinflation in Venezuela since 2015.

P. S. Here’s what some very smart people have observed of socialism and it’s kindred forms governing  –

“Socialism is a wonderful idea. It is only as a reality that it has been disastrous. Among people of every race, color, and creed, all around the world, socialism has led to hunger in countries that used to have surplus food to export…. Nevertheless, for many of those who deal primarily in ideas, socialism remains an attractive idea — in fact, seductive. Its every failure is explained away as due to the inadequacies of particular leaders. ”                           ― Thomas Sowell

empty shelves venezuela

Empty store shelves in Venezuela. The reality of the socialist dream. History tells us over and over again that government-imposed price controls lead to scarcity every time.

“Democracy and socialism have nothing in common but one word, equality. But notice the difference: while democracy seeks equality in liberty, socialism seeks equality in constraint and servitude.” – Alexis de Tocqueville

“There is all the difference in the world between treating people equally and attempting to make them equal. While the first is the condition of a free society, the second means as de Tocqueville describes it, ‘a new form of servitude.’” – Friedrich von Hayek

“No government of the left has done as much for the poor as capitalism has. Even when it comes to the redistribution of income, the left talks the talk but the free market walks the walk. What do the poor most need? They need to stop being poor. And how can that be done, on a mass scale, except by an economy that creates vastly more wealth? Yet the political left has long had a remarkable lack of interest in how wealth is created. As far as they are concerned, wealth exists somehow and the only interesting question is how to redistribute it.” ― Thomas Sowell, Controversial Essays

“The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other peoples’ money.” –Margaret Thatcher

“It is hard to imagine a more stupid or more dangerous way of making decisions than by putting those decisions in the hands of people who pay no price for being wrong.”   –Thomas Sowell

“Everyone may be called ‘comrade,’ but some comrades have the power of life and death over other comrades.” ― Thomas Sowell, Knowledge And Decisions

Ludwig von Mises:

“The worst evils which mankind has ever had to endure were inflicted by bad governments.”

“The state can be and has often been in the course of history the main source of mischief and disaster.”

Mises correctly identified a temptation that many people find too hard to resist – “the illusion that socialism will make them richer.”

Frederic Bastiat:

“Government is the great fiction through which everyone attempts to live at the expense of everyone else.”

Remember Benghazi – Beware of Twitter

“The very media, founded on communications and automata, especially television, can communicate illusion as well as reality, and that is all right as long as we know the difference.” –Dr. William O. Baker, patriot genius and former leader of Bell Labs, from his speech at Northwestern University, July 12, 1976.

It’s very hard to reach anyone at Twitter unless you tweet them, which I refuse to do. I wanted to voice a complaint directly to their management, but since I don’t tweet, I’ll voice my opinion here instead. My issue is with Twitter, Inc. itself. Too few people control platforms such as Twitter/Facebook and thus are able to “nudge” the masses in a direction that matches the values and world views of Twitter/Facebook’s leaders and their company cultures. Generically speaking this was not necessarily wrong when done transparently, but in this day and age of algorithms, supercomputers and social media, it is not at all transparent. Many people are being influenced and manipulated by online platforms without their knowledge. It is pretty scary. Why should I care what issues or stories Twitter/Facebook has chosen to label as “trending” conversations? I choose to leave myself out of that artificially created herd to hopefully think, explore and learn for myself.

Twitter, Inc. leans progressive-left. I know that means they don’t like conservatives and Republicans – people who favor more “traditional” values. That’s OK, because I don’t like their politics and social views. For instance, what is Twitter’s obsession with sexual orientation, especially the LGBT kinds? Why should I care if my auto mechanic or plumber or whoever is straight or gay? Judging from the content on Twitter’s website one might begin to think that being straight in this modern era is an oddity. But I digress…

My main point is that I know that Twitter suppresses tweets and conversations that go against their political views and promotes (trends) conversations that support their political and social views. They cannot suppress all of the things they don’t like because that would be too obvious and they don’t want to appear obvious in their bias. The latest evidence that Twitter does this: Kris Paronto’s tweet excoriating former President Obama for the Benghazi fiasco. Paronto offended Twitter with his comment. They shut him down.

Ambassador christopher stevens

Ambassador Christopher Stevens was murdered during a terrorist attack on the diplomatic outpost at Benghazi in 2012.

Paronto, a former U.S. Army Ranger and CIA security contractor, was actually in Benghazi when Americans came under attack there in 2012 on the anniversary of 9/11. The murders of four Americans there could probably have been prevented by the Obama administration. Ambassador Chris Stevens had requested more security; none was sent. Instead he was murdered and his body paraded around the streets. Two other Americans, security officers Tyrone Woods and Glen Doherty were killed by jihadi mortar fire. U.S. Foreign Service Information Management Specialist Sean Smith was also killed. There was a coverup. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton li*d about it. Ambassador Susan Rice l*ed about it. President Obama li*d about it. Kris Paronto was at Benghazi. He was an eye-witness. His observations and opinions carry weight. He is not a politician. He tweeted about it. Twitter’s censors deleted his tweet. Thus, Twitter provides cover for the Obama/Clinton derelicts responsible for the death of four Americans at Benghazi and their ongoing li*s to coverup the truth of that mess.

Susan Rice official photo

Susan Rice was the public face of the Obama administration’s campaign to deceive the American people from the truth behind the Benghazi attacks.

Benghazi was a fiasco that could have been avoided, except the Clintons didn’t like Ambassador Chris Stevens. There is gossip that he had crossed them. It may well be true. So Secretary Clinton assigned him to the most dangerous outpost in the world with minimal security. Professionals in the State Department knew it was a good possibility that Americans in Benghazi would come under attack. Hillary knew it too.

Read the National Review article about Benghazi here.

The coverup of what really happened in Washington and at Benghazi was criminal and was done simply to hide the truth, which was necessary for Obama to get re-elected in 2012. The coverup was also about protecting Hillary and her future ambitions. It was one of the ugliest examples of political blood sport in modern American history. Yet Twitter must censor Kris Paronto. The coverup continues.

Yes Twitter, yes Jack Dorsey, you are falling shy of living up to your stated values:
“We believe in free expression and think every voice has the power to impact the world.” – Twitter, Inc.

Blah, blah blah… more false advertising.

I have no doubt that Twitter/Facebook are part of the crowd that is in competition to take Trump down or at least prevent him from a second term. The people who control social media’s online platforms are not merely unbiased facilitators of communication. Instead they are using their dark genius as much as lies within their power to shape political and social conversations, which, in turn, will shape the future of our world. It’s very 1984.

Food for thought: Why does “progressive” San Francisco have such a homeless problem? Could it be that there is a correlation between progressive policies and a certain level human dysfunction? Which states tend to be generally in better fiscal health, ones controlled by Republicans or ones controlled by Democrats? Throw out the exceptions (if there are any) and you will see the correlation.
–An American

P.S. Predictably, some will dismiss my views about the Benghazi scandal as being some sort of wacky conspiracy theory. I say to them: read the Congressional Benghazi report. Look at the known facts of the case. If you are a Democrat or a liberal, be a grownup and make an honest assessment of that history. Regarding Twitter/Facebook’s shenanigans -there are so many examples of funny stuff going on behind the scenes at these online platforms it is impossible to conclude they are merely non-partisan facilitators of free speech. Only an ostrich would believe that.

 

 

Open Letter to Gov. Andrew Cuomo

Dear Governor Cuomo:
Trump was not remotely believable when he walked back his Russian election meddling comment at Helsinki by saying, “The sentence should have been, ‘I don’t see any reason why it wouldn’t be Russia.'” So too is your administration’s explanation not believable as it tries to walk back your comment that America “was never that great.” Of course, America has been and is considered by many people to be great – how else do you explain (you who condone illegal immigration into the United States) why so many emigrants risk their lives to come to the United States? Which is it Governor Cuomo? How do you reconcile those two things? You cannot.

Cuomo

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo. Will he be running for President in 2020? Of course! He already is.

I know what you were up to when you said that America “was never that great.” You were pandering to potential voters who see themselves as victims and who have been brainwashed by party, media and academia to think America is built on a racist, sexist, homophobic foundation. I understand your ambition, but please don’t trash the country that gave you and your family so many great opportunities. That behavior is very low.

On our original founders:

The Landing of the Pilgrims at Plymouth, Mass. Dec. 22nd 1620

The Pilgrims in 1620 – our founding Mothers and Fathers.

“So they left that goodly and pleasant city of Leyden, which had been their resting-place for above eleven years; but they knew that they were pilgrims and strangers here below, and looked not much on these things, but lifted up their eyes to heaven, their dearest country, where God hath prepared for them a city ( Heb. xi. 16), and therein quieted their spirits.

When they came to Delfs-Haven they found the ship and all things ready; and such of their friends as could not come with them followed after them, and sundry came from Amsterdam to see them shipt, and to take their leaves of them. One night was spent with little sleep with the most, but with friendly entertainment and Christian discourse, and other real expressions of true Christian love. The next day they went on board, and their friends with them, where truly doleful was the sight of that sad and mournful parting, to hear what sighs and sobs and prayers did sound amongst them; what tears did gush from every eye, and pithy speeches pierced each other’s heart, that sundry of the Dutch strangers that stood on the Key as spectators could not refrain from tears. But the tide (which stays for no man) calling them away, that were thus loth to depart, their Reverend Pastor, falling down on his knees, and they all with him, with watery cheeks commended them with most fervent prayers unto the Lord and his blessing; and then with mutual embraces and many tears they took their leaves one of another, which proved to be the last leave to many of them.”

“Let the reader with me make a pause, and seriously consider this poor people’s present condition, the more to be raised up to admiration of God’s goodness towards them in their preservation: for being now passed the vast ocean, and a sea of troubles before them in expectation, they had now no friends to welcome them, no inns to entertain or refresh them, no houses, or much less towns, to repair unto to seek for succour: and for the season it was winter, and they that know the winters of the country know them to be sharp and violent, subject to cruel and fierce storms, dangerous to travel to known places, much more to search unknown coasts. Besides, what could they see but a hideous and desolate wilderness, full of wilde beasts, and wilde men? and what multitudes of them there were, they then knew not: for which way soever they turned their eyes ( save upward to Heaven) they could have but little solace or content in respect of any outward object; for summer being ended, all things stand in appearance with a weather-beaten face, and the whole country, full of woods and thickets, represented a wild and savage hew; if they looked behind them, there was the mighty ocean which they had passed, and was now as a main bar or gulph to separate them from all the civil parts of the world.”

Our original founding document – the Mayflower Compact (1620):

“IN THE NAME OF GOD AMEN. We, whose names are underwritten, the loyal subjects of our dread Sovereign Lord King James, &c.& c., Having undertaken for the glory of God, and advancement of the Christian Faith, and the honour of our King and country, a voyage to plant the first colony in the northern parts of Virginia; Do by these presents solemnly and mutually, in the presence of God and one another, covenant and combine ourselves together into a civil body politick, for our better ordering and preservation, and furtherance of the ends aforesaid: and by virtue hereof do enact, constitute, and frame such just and equal laws, ordinances, acts, constitutions, and offices, from time to time, as shall be thought most meet and convenient for the general good of the Colony: unto which we promise all due submission and obedience,” etc.”

“A democracy, more perfect than antiquity had dared to dream of, started in full size and panoply from the midst of an ancient feudal society.” — Alexis de Tocqueville, “Democracy in America,” 1835

Gov Cuomo: If America isn’t and wasn’t ever great then why did your ancestors leave Italy to come here? More importantly, you imply that there are other countries greater than the United States. So I ask – why are you even still here?

One other thing, Governor Cuomo, your official website is like one big campaign ad – I cannot believe the people of New York put up with it. It really is an abuse of your office.

Sincerely,

Hortentius Canutus

Disclaimer: By receiving this correspondence Andrew Cuomo agrees to receive a lifetime of well-deserved criticism from the patriotic defenders of Lady Liberty.*

*The following disclaimer appears on Governor Cuomo’s official website:

“Disclaimer: By submitting this form you are agreeing to receive email updates from the State of New York.”

In other words if you want to voice your opinion to the governor’s office or ask for help you will be subject to a constant barrage of propaganda, like it or not. Just another friendly and delicate touch brought to you by the State of New York, Andrew Cuomo, governor.

P.S. Governor Cuomo may think my words too harsh, but I think when politicians say stupid things and promote damaging policies and ideas they need to be called out for it. I am sure Governor Cuomo is a big supporter of free speech, which is a right guaranteed to all Americans by our Bill of Rights.

A Little Thanksgiving History

Sarah_Hale_portrait

Sarah Josepha Hale (1788-1879) painted by James Reid Lambdin.

While a national civil war was raging, on September 28, 1863 Sarah J. Hale, one of the most influential American women of her time, wrote President Lincoln asking that Thanksgiving be “made a National and Fixed Union Festival.” Hale had been pushing her idea for fifteen years on presidents and governors and readers of her influential magazine, Lady’s Book. Less than a week later President Abraham  Lincoln issued the following Proclamation:

Washington, D.C.

October 3, 1863

By the President of the United States of America.

A Proclamation.

The year that is drawing towards its close, has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies. To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the source from which they come, others have been added, which are of so extraordinary a nature, that they cannot fail to penetrate and soften even the heart which is habitually insensible to the ever watchful providence of Almighty God. In the midst of a civil war of unequalled magnitude and severity, which has sometimes seemed to foreign States to invite and to provoke their aggression, peace has been preserved with all nations, order has been maintained, the laws have been respected and obeyed, and harmony has prevailed everywhere except in the theatre of military conflict; while that theatre has been greatly contracted by the advancing armies and navies of the Union. Needful diversions of wealth and of strength from the fields of peaceful industry to the national defence, have not arrested the plough, the shuttle or the ship; the axe has enlarged the borders of our settlements, and the mines, as well of iron and coal as of the precious metals, have yielded even more abundantly than heretofore. Population has steadily increased, notwithstanding the waste that has been made in the camp, the siege and the battle-field; and the country, rejoicing in the consciousness of augmented strength and vigor, is permitted to expect continuance of years with large increase of freedom. No human counsel hath devised nor hath any mortal hand worked out these great things. They are the gracious gifts of the Most High God, who, while dealing with us in anger for our sins, hath nevertheless remembered mercy. It has seemed to me fit and proper that they should be solemnly, reverently and gratefully acknowledged as with one heart and one voice by the whole American People. I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens. And I recommend to them that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings, they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to His tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquillity and Union.

In testimony whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Seal of the United States to be affixed.

Done at the City of Washington, this Third day of October, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three, and of the Independence of the United States the Eighty-eighth.

By the President: Abraham Lincoln

William H. Seward,

Secretary of State

 

Sarah J. Hale was quite an interesting figure – read more about her by clicking here.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Hortentius

It’s a Great Day…More from J. Adams

It’s a great day to share some thoughts from Founder John Adams.

Children should be educated and instructed in the principles of freedom.

–John Adams, Defense of the Constitutions, 1787

The-first-prayer-in-congress-september-1774

THE FIRST PRAYER IN CONGRESS, SEPTEMBER,1774.

 But what do we mean by the American Revolution? Do we mean the American war? The Revolution was effected before the war commenced. The Revolution was in the minds and hearts of the people; a change in their religious sentiments, of their duties and obligations…This radical change in the principles, opinions, sentiments, and affections of the people was the real American Revolution.

–John Adams, letter to H. Niles, February 13, 1818

The History of our Revolution will be one continued Lye from one end to the other. The essence of the whole will be that Dr. Franklins electrical Rod, smote the Earth and out sprung General Washington. That Franklin electrified him with his rod – and thence forward these two conducted all the Policy, Negotiations, Legislatures and War.

–John Adams to Benjamin Rush April 4, 1790

I have long thought the Philosophers of the eighteenth Century and almost all the Men of Science and Letters, crack. In my youth I was much amused with the Idea that this Globe of Earth was the (insane asylum) of the Universe. If I were now to judge it by the Conduct and Writings of the Men of Science, I should be more disposed than ever to believe that the Sun, Moon and Stars send all their Lunaticks here for confinement…

–John Adams to Benjamin Rush December 22, 1806

 

Thank you, John Adams. Happy Independence Day!

On July 2, 1776, the Second Continental Congress held a meeting at the Pennsylvania State House in Philadelphia and passed a formal resolution declaring, “these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be Free and Independent States.” That was it!

The following day John Adams wrote to his beloved wife, Abigail:

“July 3, 1776 

“Had a Declaration of Independency been made seven Months ago, it would have been attended with many great and glorious Effects . . . .

“But the Day is past. The Second Day of July 1776, will be the most memorable Epocha, in the History of America.

“I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated, by succeeding Generations, as the great anniversary Festival. It ought to be commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance by solemn Acts of Devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with Shews, Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more.

“You will think me transported with Enthusiasm but I am not. — I am well aware of the Toil and Blood and Treasure, that it will cost Us to maintain this Declaration, and support and defend these States. — Yet through all the Gloom I can see the Rays of ravishing Light and Glory. I can see that the End is more than worth all the Means. And that Posterity will tryumph in that Days Transaction, even altho We should rue it, which I trust in God We shall not.”

Letter from John Adams to Abigail Adams, 3 July 1776, “Had a Declaration…” [electronic edition]. Adams Family Papers: An Electronic Archive. Massachusetts Historical Society. http://www.masshist.org/digitaladams/

John Adams Copley.jpeg

Detail of John Adams by John Singleton Copley, ca. 1784.

The following year, after much more blood had been shed, Adams made the following comment in his letter to Abigail of April 26th:

 “Posterity! You will never know how much it cost the present generation to preserve your freedom! I hope you will make good use of it! If you do not, I shall repent it in Heaven that I ever took half the pains to preserve it!”  

If Adams were alive in 2017, I believe he would be disappointed that Americans have strayed so far from the principles of their founding.

Hortensius