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My personal musings about anything that gets on my radar screen--heavily dominated by politics.
|Today being the actual anniversary of the birth of George Washington, I thought it would be appropriate to hear some of the great man's, the Prince of America's own words. From his farewell address:|
. . . .the common and continual mischiefs of the spirit of party are sufficient to make it the interest and duty of a wise people to discourage and restrain it.
One wonders if Washington had a crystal ball and could see both the last Republican Congress and the current Democrat one--it took the Republicans 10 years to learn how to misuse, abuse, then protect, and ultimately lose, power; the Democrats are on a much faster pace; and, certainly, the "mischiefs of the spirit of party" take a role [protection of Mark Foley; the payoffs to trial lawyers in the FISA fiasco last week].
It is important, likewise, that the habits of thinking in a free country should inspire caution, in those intrusted with its administration, to confine themselves within their respective constitutional spheres, avoiding in the exercise of the powers of one department to encroach upon another. The spirit of encroachment tends to consolidate the powers of all the departments in one, and thus to create, whatever the form of government, a real despotism.
Give me a branch of government--PLEASE--and I'll demonstrate to you the accuracy of this assessment.
Of all the dispositions and habits, which lead to political prosperity, Religion and Morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of Patriotism, who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness, these firmest props of the duties of Men and Citizens.
I'm gonna put that statement on a plaque and mail it to the ACLU.
Relying on its kindness in this as in other things, and actuated by that fervent love towards it, which is so natural to a man, who views it in the native soil of himself and his progenitors for several generations; I anticipate with pleasing expectation that retreat, in which I promise myself to realize, without alloy, the sweet enjoyment of partaking, in the midst of my fellow-citizens, the benign influence of good laws under a free government, the ever favorite object of my heart, and the happy reward, as I trust, of our mutual cares, labors, and dangers.
Washington was a man born into the exact era where God wanted him to fix the world. It is difficult to image a U.S. now had George Washington not laid down the template of the Presidency.
The one thing that is obvious in his writing, and which is so startly missing from the current debate is the sense of selflessness, service and a calling to do what one, perhaps, does not want to do. " I constantly hoped, that it would have been much earlier in my power, consistently with motives, which I was not at liberty to disregard, to return to that retirement, from which I had been reluctantly drawn. "
I know Barack THINKS he's only being called to pursue this to "heal the country's soul;" but, in truth, the last man who became President who I would guess really didn't want the job is probably Gerald Ford. These days, you have to be running from about the seventh grade to get to be President.
And not that this, in itself, is reason to dismiss any of the current crop of candidates. I'm just saying a little humility from one of them would be refreshing. And historically respectful of the man who created the job they aspire to.