Gloom, Doom and Democracy
The last thing people want to read is another article on gloom and doom. Sure, the world is poised on the brink of one of the worst economic collapses in history. Sure, people are losing their jobs, businesses, homes and even their life savings, followed by hyperinflation to get what's left. Sure, political leaders have sold the people out to special interests.
But lets look on the bright side.
These will be the best of times and the worst of times, an age of wisdom and foolishness, of Light and Darkness. These will be the “times that try men souls.” There will be a rebirth of rugged individualism. Some families and communities will be strengthened by suffering and sacrifice. Some will be destroyed. Out of the chaos and confusion an indomitable nation may rise up again based on virtue. Our choice will be which path will we take through it all.
For what we are about to receive, may we truly be thankful.
To find hope, we must seek to honestly understand the problem. The disastrous news we see every day is not the problem but the result of the problem. The problem is what we have already done (or failed to do). It would be convenient to blame others for the morose state of the economy, but pandemic causes are the result of our own foolish choices, which should have been avoided . We should have taken different paths and sought more noble solutions decades ago. Until we are willing to examine our own error and change our ways, there will be no resolution, no salvation, from these dilemmas.
Somewhere along the way, we began to believe that we collectively had the right to decide what was good and what was evil, not only for ourselves, but for our neighbor, too. We began to believe that centralized government authority by the few had answers and solutions that we could not provide effectively for ourselves. Somehow we decided we had the right to rule over our neighbor, while desiring to have our own personal freedom secured and guaranteed.
Nothing could be farther from the truth.
There have been nations of free people in the past who provided for their common welfare and mutual defense through free will offerings and voluntary service. These systems required that people live lives of unselfish service to one another.
The ancient confederation of Hebrew tribes was one of the earliest republics in history. In that union there were no forced taxes, no universal service, and no ruling elite, but they still successfully functioned as a nation in a hostile world. It did not become a democracy within that original republic, until the voice of the people rejected God---and elected Saul.
Edward Gibbon writes that the rapid growth of the Christian church, in The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, was partly due to “The union and discipline of the Christian republic, which gradually formed an independent and increasing state in the heart of the Roman empire.”
In early America, the success and prosperity of the people was, no doubt in part, due to the fact that “The churches in New England were so many nurseries of freemen, training them in the principles of self-government and accustoming them to the feeling of independence. In these petty organizations were developed, in practice, the principles of individual and national freedom. Each church was a republic in embryo. The fiction became a fact, the abstraction a reality...”
America is still called a Republic, but that fact is now a fiction. Rome had been a republic too, but after its own civil war a new type of citizenship was offered through the apparent benevolence of a growing Roman bureaucracy (under the authority and grace of the Patronus of the State). “Augustus [Caesar] was sensible that mankind is governed by names; nor was he deceived in his expectation that the senate and people would submit to slavery, provided they were respectfully assured that they still enjoyed their ancient freedom.”
Republics have been defined as: “A state or nation in which the supreme power rests in all the citizens… A state or nation with a president as its titular head...” Titular is defined in the same dictionary as: “existing in title or name only; nominal…” “In another sense, it signifies the state, independently of its government.” Can we honestly say that the people live their lives(or exercise their God given rights) independently of their government? The freedom of a republic allowed men the opportunity to develop contractual obligations within the republic that often weakened the character and resolve of the community---which is so necessary to sustain liberty.
The Bible tells us to make no covenants, asks what agreements do we have, tells us to swear not, cautions us to not eat with rulers, warns that what should have been for our welfare will become a snare, forbids us to pray to so-called benefactors who exercise authority, and that through covetousness we will be delivered into bondage and made merchandise. Today, the people are no longer sovereign and do not elect titular representatives, but lawmakers who rule. “Were the talents and virtues which heaven has bestowed on men given merely to make them more obedient drudges, to be sacrificed to the follies and ambition of a few?”
The people's relationship with government has gradually changed, shifting power and choice. Citizenship “in the United States ‘it is [now] a political obligation’ depending not on ownership of land, but on the enjoyment of the protection of government; and it ‘binds the citizen to the observance of all laws’ of his sovereign.”
While the Russians, Chinese, and others have lived in communist regimes within republics, many Americans have moved from a republic to “a democracy in a republic.” The details of this process have been done more by contract, application, and participation than by vote. Ben Franklin warned, “Many a man thinks he is buying pleasure, when he is really selling himself a slave to it.”
Today, we have become a nation of consumers, who are willing to consume our neighbor for personal security or gain. People have fallen in love with, if not become addicted to, the benefits offered by democracy. This subsequent love affair with democracy would have to be a recent aberration, since President James Madison said Democracies have ever been spectacles of turbulence and contention; have ever been found incompatible with personal security, or the rights of property; and have in general been as short in their lives as they have been violent in their deaths.”. John Adams said that Democracy “soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There is never a democracy that did not commit suicide.” Long before Adams spoke of his contempt for democracy, Plato had said “Dictatorship naturally arises out of democracy...” And long after Adams, Ralph Waldo Emerson said “Democracy is morose, and runs to anarchy.” “Under a democratic government, the citizens exercise the powers of sovereignty; and those powers will be first abused, and afterwards lost, if they are committed to an unwieldy multitude.” And anyone who has the power to control the multitude is dictator to all.
Karl Marx claimed “Democracy is the road to socialism.” And we know he was really trying to get to communism. Winston Churchill wrote that: “Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy, its inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery.” He went on to say that “The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.”
Caesar was right, mankind is governed by names and their definitions. This was the definition of democracy in 1928:
“DEMOCRACY: A government of the masses. Authority derived through mass meeting or any form of direct expression. Results in mobocracy. Attitude toward property is communistic - negating property rights. Attitude toward law is that the will of the majority shall regulate, whether it is based upon deliberation or governed by passion, prejudice, and impulse, without restraint or regard for consequences. Results in demagogism, license, agitation, discontent, anarchy.”
Perception is altered and the path of a nation is changed. By June 1952, the following definition resulted in a changed attitude:
“Meaning of democracy: Because the United States is a democracy, the majority of the people decide how our government will be organized and run - and that includes the Army, Navy and Air Force. The people do this by electing representatives, and these men and women carry out the wishes of the people.”
Changing definitions will not protect the people. “The multitude of those who err is no protection for error.” Democracies all end the same.
“If you establish a democracy, you must in due time reap the fruits of a democracy. You will in due season have great impatience of the public burdens, combined in due season with great increase of the public expenditure. You will in due season have wars entered into from passion and not from reason; and you will in due season submit to peace ignominiously sought and ignominiously obtained, which will diminish your authority and perhaps endanger your independence. You will in due season find your property is less valuable, and your freedom less complete.”
Historian and Congressman Ron Paul said “Our country's founders cherished liberty, not democracy.” In a democracy it is your freedom, your right to choose, that is often on the political chopping block . Even Benjamin Franklin said a “Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote!”
“For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only [use] not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another. For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. But if ye bite and devour one another, take heed that ye be not consumed one of another.” Galatians 5:13-15
Franklin advised those lambs how best protect themselves from the ravages of democracies, saying “A nation of well informed men who have been taught to know and prize the rights which God has given them cannot be enslaved. It is in the region of ignorance that tyranny begins.” Those rights depend upon us valuing our neighbors rights as much as we value our own.
So, what do we need to know?
Nothing is beyond re-examination. In a constitutional republic, you might have some safeguards but Patrick Henry argued against the Constitution of the United States because he saw that “When evil men take office, the whole gang will be in collusion! They will keep the people in utter ignorance and steal their liberty by ambuscade!” Do we understand those flaws, and are we prepared to guard against them? It was not the Constitution that made this nation great, but the noble individuals who rose up every day, worked in the fields and factories, cared for their families, and provided for the honest needs of their community.
Benjamin Franklin also warned emphatically that “When the people find they can vote themselves money, that will herald the end of the republic.” I have to agree with James Russell Lowell when he said “Democracy gives every man the right to be his own oppressor” and he begins the process by oppressing his neighbor. “Can the liberties of a nation be thought secure when we have removed their only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of the people that these liberties are of the gift of God? That they are not to be violated but with His wrath?”
Democracy has no inherent right to remove the rights of others. We give it that right when we call on it to take from our neighbor for our own benefit. “I often wonder whether we do not rest our hopes to much upon constitutions, upon laws and courts. These are false hopes, believe me; these are false hopes. Liberty lies in the hearts of men and women; when it dies there, no Constitution, no law, no court can save it.”
If you apply for benefits, deeming that your neighbor must pay for your welfare through the authority of men who call themselves benefactors, then you will and should become nothing more than human resources, at the whim of those elected to rule over you. The greatest threat to liberty is the offices of voters steeped in a desire for benefits, even at their neighbor's expense.
“You have rights antecedent to all earthly governments: rights that cannot be repealed or restrained by human laws; rights derived from the Great Legislator of the universe.” But you may sell yourself a slave to a world of your own making, and seal your bondage in debt. Free societies are dependent upon the charitable nature of its members, not the ability to extract contributions at the point of a gun.
It is a violation of the perfect law of liberty, of charity and love to covet our neighbor's goods through the exercise of democracy. Abraham, Moses, and Jesus taught the people the precepts of freedom, but modern churches, synagogues, and even mosques have rejected God and failed the people they were meant to serve. We the people will not be free until we free our neighbor from the whim of our own desires. “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” Matthew 6:33
“Because my people hath forgotten me, they have burned incense to vanity, and they have caused them to stumble in their ways [from] the ancient paths, to walk in paths, [in] a way not cast up;” Jeremiah 18:15
Chapter 7. of the book The Covenants of the gods
Republic vs Democracy
Chapter 8. of the book The Covenants of the gods
Democracy vs Demagogue
Slavery to Salvation [see clip 5]