The Revolution was fought, capitalized by real men and women who understood why they were fighting and sacrificing, to secure a truly evolutionary understanding of humanity's relationship with God, each other, and with the curious tool of human organizing we call government. America had been founded by four distinct groups with very different views of their spiritual relationship with God and very different cultures. These were Puritans, Quakers, Scots-Irish (Scots evicted from Scotland by the English many of whom briefly lit down in Ireland before moving on to the Colonies), and the second and third sons of the English Aristocracy looking to establish themselves.
All people bring with them when they move their culture and the technologies for survival and beliefs they accepted as true. These people took their beliefs and built a world that enunciated those beliefs through action.
Accidentally, the Puritans and Quakers settled mostly in the New England area. The Scots-Irish and Chesapeakes (2nd and 3rd sons) settled mostly in the South. After the initial settlements were in place this reinforced itself, new immigrants moving where the culture was most familiar to them.
The New England culture, derived from Puritan and Quaker, had at its foundation the belief that each human soul is directly connected to God and sovereign. This was the basis of the original Puritan settlement of Massachusetts. That belief, then echoed in Locke and other later more secular philosophers, was accepted by many of the Founders, especially those who were intellectuals. This included Thomas Jefferson. Natural Rights Theory, the view that all of us possess inherent rights at birth and that these are not given by government is a profound departure from earlier assertions on the basis of government.
In the immediate wake of the Revolution a bait and switch took place.
To secure something the Founders believed to be essential, a common, central government, they compromised on the issue of the inherent rights of all. Blacks and women were excluded; their inherent rights were reduced to legislated privileges and they had few, of any, of those.
The Founders sincerely believed this would be of short duration. The Great Compromise was seen as a transitional step. Most men at that point in time may have actually believed the disinformation campaigns that characterized women variously as 'uncontrollably sexual,' 'inherently unable to reason,' and 'needing moral guidance.' We hear echoes of this today though it is now a marginal belief system. Most people still holding these beliefs are uneducated and do not express these thoughts because they become subject to ridicule.
There was a lot the Founders, necessarily, did not know because no one knew. The concept of economics as a system of study, genetics, germ theory, anthropology, neurobiology, and other more accurate ideas on human development were not yet in existence. They did the best they could. They also trusted the South to honor its promises. That was a mistake. They had no preset means for enforcement. People do not voluntarily give up stolen goods.
It would have been better if the Constitution had not ratified at the cost of compromising on the foundation on which government would then operate The divisions we face today all have their origin from that point in time.
Those Chesapeakes went on to replicate the economy and cultural forms most familiar to them. So, ironically, the estate system of England, which was then dying because of pressures that ended serfdom and untying people from the land, sprang up in the South. The new serfs, black slaves, had even fewer rights than had their English equivalents. Southern States forced the less wealthy among them to subsidize slave holding by establishing a militia who enforced the laws they legislated that kept them in power.
In the immediate wake of the Revolution a huge migration took place. A half a million Southerners, mostly Abolition oriented, left the South for the North or North West. At the same time 350,000 slaveholders from the North left there for the South or South West. The people voted on the issue. This homogenized opinion in each area and delayed the conflict.
The Civil War was not fought over slavery; each governmental entity used those issues that worked best to quash dissent and whip up patriotic fervor. Both sides actually were focused on the wrongful preservation of the means by which a small, powerful elite was profiting. This is true of all the wars, except the Revolution, that America has fought.
In the interim women had been busy. Denied their proper rights they used those tools available to them to increase their ability to run their own lives and improve their communities. All social justice movements come from the consistent, and determined work of women. Women entered education; the first generation of the women's movement must be counted as those first teachers of Dame schools, mostly in New England. From there graduates began to seek jobs as teachers themselves. Through arguments that teaching children was a natural corollary of women's natural role in the home women teachers were allowed to have jobs – at 1/3 to ½ the wages paid to men. The only tool open to women to increase their participation in the economy and in the exercise of their rights was through legislation. A Constitutional Amendment that affirmed their status as people included under the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution was out of their reach. But the use of statute to modify the inherent rights of individuals had become accepted and soon had begun to impact men as well.
Through the back door the State had achieved the sovereign status that the Revolution had been fought to deny.
In the wake of the Civil War and the reign of the Robber Barons the predatory behavior that took place appalled and disgusted decent people. The philosophy of Natural Rights was questioned because if a tool does not work rational people discard it and find something that will work.
If you couldn't trust individuals to do the right thing, then what about entrusting those decisions to lofty minded, intelligent people who could ensure a real justice?
Progressivism was a movement among the well educated and those who had been struggling for justice for those abused by the system. The bible of Progressivism, written by Herbert Croly in 1909 was, “The Promise of American Life.” Teddy Roosevelt read it on a trip to Africa and was persuaded. The scene had been set to deemphasize the study of America's Founding documents and so acceptance of the philosophy of Natural Rights and instead let government do the thinking by the campaign for the Pledge of Allegiance in 1892 by the Progressive-Socialists, the Bellamy cousins. Cultural waves of change do not happen over night.
Liberals today are still buoyed up with the sense they are idealists with right and justice on their side. They were idealists and this is still the case for many of them – but they were using the wrong tool to achieve the outcome. Centralized control of a system fails to allow individuals to exercise the autonomy and control of their own lives that makes it possible for the system to deliver. If the wheel is square you will never reach your destination.
Enter the PetroElite and their political operatives.
America was experimenting with new technologies with the excitement of a kid who has discovered fireworks in the decades that cap the end of the Nineteenths and Twentieth Centuries. Progressivism, its core philosophy based in the idea that individuals were just too damned dumb and venal to make decisions for themselves, did not see for a moment the logic of where the use of a centralized planning model would take them. Economics was a known discipline but Austrian Economics, the set of ideas that demonstrates that each individual must be free to assert their full weight of choice in the market, was still in its infancy. That the matrix essential to the existence of a free market, universal acceptance of Natural Rights Theory, had never taken place was invisible; a significant percentage of the proponents of NRT had ignored the need to affirm women, more than half the population, in those rights. They had cooperated passively though inaction, and so enabled the view that NR were equivalent to privileges granted by statute. In so doing they ignored the power of the marketplace to allow questions to be determined by human action.
The first corporations that came up with the clever theory of 'natural monopolies' were utility companies and oil companies. Over a period of three generations they came to view government as a natural extension of their corporate policies. The military should protect them – at no cost to themselves, naturally. The courts and legislatures should enable their interests because without them all would freeze and starve. And God forbid anyone would throw a monkey wrench into a their pipelines of profit. To prevent that, and maintain the stability they had come to see as entirely 'natural,' corporations began to use the CIA in the wake of WWII and also to field political operatives to handle movements that they saw would threaten their control.
In the 1950s and 60s they identified two such threats. The United Nations and the Environmental Movement, fielding three main operatives to subvert and redirect these. The operatives are all still with us. They are George H. W. Bush, OR Anderson, an oil man, and Maurice Strong, still active and using the Peace University to train paramilitary and launder funds.
Bush, Senior liaisoned with the new hires, Irving and William Kristol, in their intellectual reformatting of what was once the Conservative wing of the Republican Party. He recruited Karl Rove, who assembled the team who with Ralph Reed, Pat Robertson, Jack Abramoff, and others, converted the Republican Party into a series of carefully managed voting blocks that includes the Religious Right. That was built out of apolitical churches with congregations made up of the most uneducated elements of the population, mostly from poor Southern backgrounds. In this way the lingering hostility towards women and blacks could be resurrected and returned to the mainstream.
This is where we are today, or where we were just before 9/11. Now, the present Public Relations and management firm retained for 30 years by the PetroElite has been axed. The self elected elite will tolerate many things, but incompetence is not one of them. So as their former employees, NeoCons, continue a melt down that would do honor to the Wicked Witch of the West, the PetroElite are looking over resumes and considering their options. We will know who made the first cut because those will be the best funded front runners seeking to occupy the White House in 2009.
Let's fool them by getting off the grids and turning off their stream of income.
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