Friday, September 4, 2009

Remembering the Founding Fathers

I love the Founding Fathers. I freely admit that they were imperfect men with faults. But, we all are. They were however inspired. Their own accounts testify to the Spirit of God moving upon them to lay the foundations of this country. For this I am eternally grateful.

Unfortunately, there are those in our nation that do not accept this view. It is hard to accept God's hand in the founding of the United States of America if one does not believe in God. Neither does one accept that our rights are God given.

For this reason there are some who, in order to lessen the impact and importance of our Founding Fathers, will continue to look, talk, and teach of them in a negative light. They will focus only on their faults to lessen them and what they accomplished (namely The Constitution, Bill of Rights, and The Declaration of Independence.)

I have friends that will complain that the Founding Fathers were nothing but rich men who made money through the war; that they were nothing but a bunch of white slave owning rich men.

The more I study about them, however, the more in awe I become of there wisdom, their insights, and their sacrifice. I have grown to love them and I know that they were inspired, and that God's hand rests upon this nation. James Madison said of the founding of our nation, "It is impossible for the man of pious reflection not to perceive in it a finger of that Almighty hand which has been so frequently and signally extended to our relief in the critical stages of the revolution. "

In their defense, I link the following speech that was given by Rush Limbaugh's Father. Rush has added a little bit of commentary at the beginning and end of the speech. I have permission to link it but not to copy and post the text. Please follow the link below and renew your appreciation of these great men.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

The 17th Amendment to the Constitution of the United States

In recent months there have been louder cries from the governors and state legistlators of many states, that the Federal Government has spilled over its bounds and is usurping the authority of the individual states. Many States Have passed legislation asserting their sovereignty. Montana had passed legislation stating the federal law does not apply to guns made sold and kept with in the state. Universally they have been invoking the 10th amendment in their claims. The tenth amendment reads thus.

"The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people."

The Founding Fathers believed in a limited federal government and in the rights of states. Their first attempt at a constitution, the Articles of Confederation, gave no authority to central government in order to impose its will. Because of this the Government could not do anything or force the states to comply with its wishes. Nothing got done. In order to fix this they met again to address these problems. Out of this came the Constitution. The Constitution gave the federal government the authority it needed to conduct business, but the Founders were very concerned about the central government over-stepping its bounds and taking powers from the states. They did not want to over correct and give too much power to the central government. In order to protect the rights of states, the framers did two things: they created the Bill of Rights, specifically the 10th amendment, and they designed a government where senators would be chosen by the individual state legislatures.

The Founders set it up that the people individually would be represented in the Congress. That is why there is one congressman for a geographic area with roughly the same number of people. These congressmen would have to answer to their constituants by needing to be reelected by them every two years. The states would then be represented in the senate. That is why there is an equal number of senators per state regardless of its population. Senators where to protect the interests of the states. These senators would be chosen by the legisltures of the state and would be accountable to them by reappointment. The senator would then protect the rights of the state because he was accountable to them.

In 1913 this changed with the passing of the 17th amendment. Making the senators popularly elected. Now the states have no voice in the federal government. They have no one who specifically looks out for their best interest, or anyone who is directly accountable to them. Since 1913 the rights of the states have slowly been whittled away.

For more information on this subject you can read:
Principle #19 and #21 in The 5000 Year Leap
or follow this link to a CNN article about the 17th amendment

A Republic

After the Constitutional Congress had completed their work on the Constitution, Benjamin Franklin was asked by a woman "what kind of government he and his fellow delegates had given them, Dr. Franklin replied: 'A Republic, if you can keep it (America, The Last Best Hope, by Bill Bennett, 126.)'"

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

It's For Your Own Good

Do I believe that those who are trying to fundamentally change the US are really wanting to destroy the country? No, I believe that they are sincere in their desires. I believe that they are really trying to do what they think is best. And that is what worries me the most.

"Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience"
C. S. Lewis

Monday, August 24, 2009

Esau's Birthright

In the Bible there is the story of Esau, the eldest son of Isaac and twin brother of Jacob (Israeal.) One day, Esau was particularly hungry so he sold his birthright, or gave his birthright to his brother, for a mess of pottage.
In order to understand the significance of this story we must first look at what a birthright is. A Father's posessions, land, gold, etc. would be divided into the sum of the children plus one. So if a man had 2 children, as in this case, the posessions would be divided by three with the extra portion going to the son with the birthright. Esau stood to inherit two thirds of his father's possessions and his brother would get one third. With this extra inheritance came added responsiblility; the birthright child was also to assume the leadership of the family upon the death of the father.
It is never fully explained the reasoning behind Esau's choice; He said he was "at the point of death." But for what ever reason, Esau did not hold his birthright in high enough regard or think it important enough, because to him, it was only worth a mess of pottage. Maybe he did not want to take upon himself the added responsibility. We do not completely know. But this we do know - His choice affected not only himself but also the rest of his posterity. Because, with the birthright also came the covenant blessing.

We as Americans have been given a Birthright as well. It comes in the form of the Constitution, The Bill of Rights, and The Declaration of Independence. It is Freedom. Freedom, like the Abrahamic Covenant is a gift from God. This gift, as believed by the foundering fathers is an unalienable right given to all men. However, it is the general rule throughout history that these rights of men have been taken away or denied to man by unrighteous leaders, by kings, dictators, and tyrants. The Founding Fathers though, endeavored to make these rights protected to the American people. Unfortunatly we, like Esau, can sell our birthright for a mess of pottage. We can give our freedom and our rights away. But why would we do such a thing?Maybe we don't want the added responsiblity. Protecting our rights is a responsility and it takes work and study and diligence. A free people must also take responsiblity for themselves. Sometimes it is easier to let someone of something take care of us. We may sell it through apathy or through fear. We may sell our birthright because we don't value it or we may trade it for a handout.
But these choices do not only effect us but generations to come. And just as we look back at the foolishness of Esau, our decendats will look at us and and question why. Why did you throw away your God given birthright for a mess of pottage? Our excuses will sound as silly to them as Esau's does to us.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Book Review

Besides the scriptures, this book has been one of the most important books I have read.

W. Cleon Skousen's book has put all the pieces together for me. We all have been in history and government class and read the great words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence. But this book opens up to us the minds of the founders, and places those words in the context of the founders lives, the books they read, the ideas they discussed, and the politics of the time. The book itself is mostly quotations of the founders and their contemporaries, sprinkled with Skousen's commentary. Most of the information comes from the primary sources. As you read, phrases that you have heard over and over through your life will take on their proper meaning and significance.
The book is broken into two portions. The first is an overview of the historical background of the founding of this country. The second portion, and the meat of book, walks us through the 28 principles of freedom that the founding fathers understood and how they influenced them as they established the union. These include subjects such as Man's Unalienable rights, Separation of powers, Free Market Economics, Separation of powers, and Property Rights.
I have always had a great love and admiration for the founding fathers. But this book has deepened my respect and awe of these great men who changed not only the United States of America but also the world. It has also deepened my faith in the Almighty and his hand in the founding of this country. This book is a must read for anyone who wants to understand the founding of this country and what it means to be an American.
As I have read this book I have felt an overwhelming sense of pride in this great country of ours. I have also wept to see the many ways that we have wasted our freedom and fallen from the great ideal of that which the founders created. Every American should read this book.
This Book is nearly 30 years old. It was written in 1981. It has recently been rediscovered and still as fresh and timely as it ever was, if not more so. It has spent the last 211 days in the Top 100 on Amazon, and can be easily purchased online at amazon or other retailers. My copy was less than $12, well worth it - one of the most important books I have ever read.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Socialized Health Care

This is an important video for everyone to watch if they want to understand some different scenarios that might be coming with socialized medicine.

I have a friend whose step daughter is half Native American and our community borders the indian reservation. Although she has free health care on the reservation they do not take her out there to receive her care. They would rather pay the co-pays and deductibles because the quality of care is so poor and the waiting times are so long. They would rather pay out of their pocket than use government run health care.

I lived in Japan for 2 years as a missionary for my church, and saw first hand similar, yet different conditions in Japan which also has government funded health care.

I saw crumbling hospitals with paint and plaster falling off the walls of the patient's room. I saw doctors who are only able to spend a 2-3 minutes with each patient before they leave - that is 2-3 minutes for greeting, diagnosis, tests and writing and explaining prescriptions.

This is the average time spent by doctors with patients in Japan.

I personally went to the doctor. I walked in sat down opened my mouth. He looked in, wrote a prescription and I left. I had no time to ask questions or get instructions. I was never told what the diagnosis was. Nor was I informed what medications I received from the pharmacy housed in the medical center. I needed to get out so that he could keep pace with the work load.

The above video is an example of how our government is already running health care. Is that what we want?

One of the arguments for government health care is that we have many people who don't have insurance and therefore can't get health care. This point is a fallacy. No one in this country is denied health care because of an inablity to pay.

I know of a woman locally who has no health insurance and was diagnosed with cancer a few days ago. She will be having surgery in a week and a half, regardless of her ability to pay. As we saw in the above video, when the government runs it, there will be cuts and waiting lists and lack of money.

The Government taking over the health care system is always sold to the public as "helping those who can't be helped." Rather, it is really about power and money. Healthcare accounts for 1/6th of our country's economy. That is a huge piece of the pie that once is put in the government's hands will be nearly impossible to remove.

We keep talking about about the Canadian system and how we should be looking towards that as an example. Well this week the Head of the Canadian health care system came out and announced that the Canadian System is "sick"and "imploding." Maybe we need to be more honest about our health care system. We get the best treatment in the world. Is it perfect? No. Are there changes that need to be made? Absolutely. But, it does not need to be completely scrapped for something worse.

Check out these two links