Lacey Smith

Inseparably Connected

In Current Events, Education, Politics, Religion on December 9, 2011 at 12:00 pm

On Wednesday I posted a blog that talked about a really frightening and frustrating element of American corruption.

The only solution for it is an informed and constantly watchful electorate.

I believe, as I have for as long as I can remember, that the strength of America has always been her people.

I also believe that that is the weakness of our country as well.

James Madison said:

If men were angels, no government would be necessary.

(Federalist #51)

People need government as adults just as much as children need rules.

Madison goes on:

If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary. In framing a government which is to be administered by men over men, the great difficulty lies in this: you must first enable the government to control the governed; and in the next place oblige it to control itself.

In other words, since men are not angels and are not governed by angels, the only option is for men to govern other men.

This is a risky proposition because men are highly corruptible (think “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” – Baron Acton 1887).

Consequently, any government system needs to have checks placed on it from getting out of hand.

Madison concluded that the best way to do this was to have the government depend on the people but to also have additional controls so that things could not get out of hand.

Like all our Founding Fathers, Madison understood that America’s greatest strength and greatest weakness was us, We the People.

Because we are ruled by men, an understanding of the nature of humanity is crucial to and understanding of good government.

Equally as crucial is the relationship between a moral people and the success of a Republic.

The only way governed people can be free is if they are upstanding, morally sound people.

Without people of character, especially at our highest levels of government, we fail. Therefore, we have to understand people’s character before we vote for them.

Additionally, I believe strongly that we get the government we deserve. A lazy, apathetic people who see principles in their own lives as movable inconveniences will get elected officials of an equal caliber.

A moral, engaged and strictly principled people will demand public servants who are the same. They will not settle for something less and therefore they will receive nothing less.

The only option other than being a principled people is to be slaves to a government. Either we are good and free or we are bad and in bondage.

There is no schism: the nature of man and principles of good government are inseparably connected.

It is completely up to us to be moral or to be slaves.

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