[This is the follow-on to my previous post and must be read in context with it.]
We are the hollow men
We are the stuffed men
Headpiece filled with straw. Alas!
Our dried voices, when
We whisper together
Are quiet and meaningless
As wind in dry grass
Or rats feet over broken glass
In our dry cellar
Shape without form, shade without color,
Paralyzed force, gesture without motion;
T. S. Eliot, The Hollow Men
The failure to articulate the connection between moral concerns and limited government has allowed the emergence of a sham approach to moral issues. On issues like abortion or the defense of the God-ordained natural family, leaders give lip-service or take isolated stands while actually implementing policies that preferentially employ and promote the spirit killing use of government power as the way to deal with our economic and social challenges. This is how the Huckabee/Palin fold (of the three-fold Republican political scenario discussed in my previous post) manifests the deficiency of substantive logic that so often makes the Bush league’s version of a Republican conservative such a ‘hollow man (or woman, as the case may be)’.
Education is the area where this deficiency becomes most apparent. The “No Child Left behind” policies of the Bush years were predicated on the development and use of centralized government power and control as the motivating engine for improvements in the standards and quality of American education. Bush policies also worked comfortably with an understanding of education as primarily aimed at workforce preparation. They did little to challenge the leftist, NEA strategy of abusing education to impose a globalist (‘world citizen’, i.e., citizen as the subject/worker in the global economy) as opposed to American (‘sovereign citizen’, i.e., the citizen as a member of the sovereign body of the people) identity on our children. Mike Huckabee “called No Child Left Behind “the greatest education reform effort by the federal government in my lifetime,” (Washington Times 03/01/05)”. Sarah Palin has superficially criticized its implementation. Her approach to education has generally emphasized funding, teacher salaries and workforce preparation, (typical NEA compatible boilerplate). She allows for school choice and teaching about creation in schools, but has apparently never coherently thought through and articulated the understanding that connects them with the essential goal of preparing young Americans for their historically unique participation as sovereign citizens in the constitutional processes of deliberation and choice that are supposed to govern their nation.
For true conservatives this aspect of education isn’t just one issue among many because it is a key prerequisite for the survival of liberty. The Constitutional oath required of all our government officials obliges them first and foremost to preserve Constitutional government (the republican form of government- of, by and for the people- required by Article IV, Section 4 of the U.S. Constitution.). Except we make preparation for citizenship the core and guiding concept of education in our society, this form of government must fail. But the assertion and sustenance of citizen sovereignty depends on respect for the basic moral understanding that undergirds the just requirement that government be based on the consent of the governed. As summarized in the Declaration of Independence, this moral understanding holds that human beings are created equal, their nature endowed with God-ordained unalienable rights. Though simply stated, the reasoning involved in this moral understanding must be shared with each new generation so that they can act with reasonable conviction as to its truth. Their education must therefore introduce them to the facts that account for its emergence in human history. And it must prepare them to follow and appreciate the thinking that reveals its intellectual and spiritual roots.
These education tasks rely on a reference to the Author of all creation as the ultimate source for the authority of the people. Yet the politicians of our time have surrendered control of education for many of our children to a government run system, that by incompetence or design they permit to be constrained by a doctrine that excludes all reference to God and His creation from the curriculum. The forces that promote this doctrine go beyond the exclusion of God’s authority. They take measures that can only be intended to shame and intimidate students raised to reverence God’s authority in their homes. Though often portrayed as if this is just hostility to “religion” it is in fact hostility toward the ideas of justice and liberty that are the basis for our institutions of constitutional self-government. If, from generation to generation, the American people surrender the warrant of sovereignty they derive from the divine Ruler of all possible worlds, they must inevitably expose themselves to the logic that has, throughout human history, subjected people in this world to the arbitrary rule of elite human masters deriving their warrant from the successful impositions of fear, force and falsehood.
Of course the power hungry elites in our time claim to derive their warrant for mastery from ‘scientific truth’. But when people pretend that modern science offers any proven knowledge about the substance and premises of moral truth, their claim has no more basis than any other superstition. It is the logic of human experience, not scientific experiment that must decide the truth of moral ideas. That logic takes account of facts the instruments of science cannot perceive or measure, like the sense of inner worth that sparks the heart of every human being to cherish the love our nature beckons us to show toward one another, even when it sears our pride or other selfish interest. Such are the self-evident truths on which the American founders based the human claim to liberty. Republican leaders from the Palin/Huckabee fold seek the support and vote of those whose faith and natural wisdom lead them to hold fast to these truths. Whether through insincerity or incompetence, however, these leaders have shown no ability or even inclination to represent and articulate the reasoning that approves this wisdom and justifies this faith. Meanwhile, efforts to do what they can or will not do have been starved, stifled and systematically driven from the most visible platforms of public discussion and debate.
This failure of reasonable articulation tacitly cedes the high ground of moral discussion to those who assault the premises of liberty. It feeds and almost guarantees the outcome we have seen from the Bush era of Republican leadership. You can’t beat something with nothing. Though confronted only by the straw man of socialist materialism and false compassion, the hollow men of contemporary Republican ‘conservatism’ lose because they will not fight, and because they fight for nothing even when they win. Who still deludes themselves that another empty victory won by such an empty leadership will restore the strength of the American people, and renew their faith in the better human destiny their liberty is supposed to illustrate to all mankind? The tragedy is, however, that except they are stirred by such renewal, there will be no victory of freedom, even a hollow one. And like the elderly exiled from care by the elitists’ banal scheme for health care savings, this once free people will be pushed by falsehood and hollow betrayal, gently whimpering with inarticulate regret, into the long, dark night of tyranny come again. Have we become people with souls so dead we can still believe this is the lesser evil?
Between the idea
And the reality
Between the motion
And the act
Falls the Shadow…
T. S. Eliot, The Hollow Men
Today I was behind an older gentleman in a store. He was frustrated because the item he wanted to purchase did not ring up at the register according to what the tag hanging over the item had said it cost. He turned around and asked me why were things always ringing up different than they were marked. I said because we are too smart for our own good. I told him when I was a little boy and people used pricing guns, every item was marked and cashiers not only KNEW the prices, they knew how to count. Thank you, computers and UPC's…
We continued our conversation in the parking lot when he stopped me on the way to my truck. Come to find out, he is 76 and a former pastor – AND YES, he TOO said that things are the way they are in this country because we do NOT acknowledge GOD in public OR in our government. Unless it is self serving.
We both agreed that many we know love to play dress up and go to church on Sunday, but as he said, they are door stop Christians. We do not fight for too much and many of us believe we should "mind our business" and stay OUT of government. We, unfortunately, are what is WRONG with this country and the ROOT of the problem.
As I have said before in my comments – the day we get down on OUR knees and confess OUR sins, ask for forgiveness and go about our way ALL THROUGH the week to live for Christ, THEN we will see a turn around in this country. Not a moment before. GOD says those that are called by HIS name must do this – NOT those who are running the government or Muslims or gays or whoever else wants to be put into a category.
WE need to get OUR act together!
"Who still deludes themselves that another empty victory won by such an empty leadership…"
On the one hand many 'appear' to still be caught up in the verbiage of talking heads. Afterall, not only are there some valid points in trashing the left, but isn't it fun?
But then there are the tea partiers. Many of them do "get it" and acknowledge the line between the two parties is thin indeed. But it will take vigilance to ensure the movement isn't hijacked by neocon usupers from that same media element. And possibly coming from former members of Congress.
Call me cynical, but unless there is a mass exodus from the so-called two-party monolith I will not trust their motives. If this takeover succeeds it will be proof the dumbing down of Americans isn't confined to the leftists.
And I mean no disrespect. It would be easy to toss around epithets to the chagrin of many. But this is serious business. The real deficiency is spiritual, as Dr. Keyes makes clear.
Hmmm…I'm very glad of individuals who have a vision of education that harks to the purpose of mortal life, that men may learn to know and do the will of God.
At the same time, I do not see that any elaborate theory along such lines is necessary to the system of education itself. As long as there is no government established monopoly over the kind and degree of education which may be obtained, those most able to provide really sound moral education will find customers among those who really value it. Nothing more is really necessary. Freedom is useful, not only in producing the success of those who follow the dictates of natural and divine law, but in permitting the 'instructive counterexample' of those who volunteer to demonstrate the consequences of defiance of that law which truly ordains all that is and may be.
That may sound very cold-hearted. I am certain that God must have a higher understanding of the purpose of freedom for those who will use it badly…but I don't share that understanding, and the 'higher' purpose I do understand is probably reflective of my own evil nature. So I settle on the merely pragmatic utility of freedom for all, not only those who will use it well.
And, naturally, offering freedom to all (including those who will only use if for self-destruction) is also the only way to enlist full support for it. Besides, there is the practical difficulty of creating a scheme of freedom that cannot be abused. Whether or not God might be able to do such a thing, it is certainly impossible for humans to implement.
I admit Dr. Keyes. I have probably used the phase in a comment on your post before. I was ALWAYS told vote for the lesser of two evils. Now, after this and one of your other recent blogs, I see there is no difference between the two.
If someone is committing suicide, it doesn't really matter if they shoot themselves in the head or bang their head against a rock. The result is the same. I just wish we had more people willing to stand up for what is right AND more people spreading the word about serious candidates WITHOUT an (R) or (D) behind their name.
I am still sick to this day that I ever registered as a Republican. I thought so much of President Bush (especially up against Al "Nobel" Gore) and up until he started rolling over to the Demorats. When he pulled that second criminulus stunt, I was through! THEN I found out how the Republican Party had disrespected you! That was the END for me.
Now, I just wish we could get your name out there for more people to read your blog. So many seniors in this country that will not hear of the internet and are TIRED of this mess we are in. We need promotion!
Doesn't any wealthy conservative own a media corporation in this country?????????
Third rail political issues. It's time to touch on all of them. In addition to abortion –
3. (Unfunded) Liabilities
Just to name a few….
Hollywood stars are believers in the falsehood that if a person is able to attain wealth that must be a sign of wisdom, but what they don't realize is that wealth in a corrupt system is a sign of corruption.
The law makers have forgotten the purpose of the law, and that is to settle disputes in an orderly fashion as to maintain peace in the nation. They have changed the laws from being a servant to mankind, into being a driver and ruler over mankind. Instead of people using their inherent ability to use a well tempered heart to measure justice, they now depend on the law to educate them on what a good heart should decide. But unfortunately the corrupt hearts of the custodians of the laws have perverted the laws to dictate the detailed lives of the individual, leaving the citizens to put to rest their alertness to justice.
A nation's culture is defined on the basis of several fundamental core virtues; temperance, courage, wisdom and justice. If your definition of justice is that a man should gain power by who he knows your culture will be a slave to the popularity contest that caters to the intemperate members of your society. The vices will grow and viciousness will be the fruits of your society. BUT if you define justice such that a man should gain power by the effort and wisdom he has gained through temperance of his passions and displayed courage by showing his temperance through selfless acts which is proof that he is temperate and knows himself and thus has attained true wisdom.
—- Know yourself and BE TEMPERATE!
This is a culture that will sustain itself and never be destroyed. The body of the congregation forms the basis for a culture, and any culture (or body) which has temperance deeply rooted in itself is incorruptible.
Lead by the Holy Spirit !
All the best !
Software Programmer !!
By the way, this is one primary reason that I advocate for placing a moratorium on immigration to this country. And, yes, I obviously mean the legal kind.
It's bad enough when your own (rooted) citizens don't understand the essential characteristics of their form of government. It is worse when, to add insult to injury, you invite people in from very different cultures who haven't even the benefit of having lived under a system of government that remotely values and protects fundamental human rights. Not even on a local level.
To quote Mr. Webster again:
"Many of them [immigrants] come here with violent prejudices against arbitrary government, and they seem to make no great distinction between arbitrary government and a government of laws founded on free elections."
This is at least as true as it was in Webster's time. Except, of course, we're bringing in a lot more of them now, and from cultures vastly more different than they ever thought about bringing in in Webster's day. And this when America's national purpose is almost completely lost on this generation.
George Washington warned that there was a danger inherent to sending our young people abroad to acquire the higher branches of education. What was the danger he saw in this? That they would likely, not being familiar with the value of their own government, imbibe principles not congenial with republicanism. Well, there's no great danger in that anymore. Rather than the problem being the exportation of our impressionable youngsters abroad where they would imbibe these anti-Republican principles, we've imported to America these philosophies of government and allowed them to grow and infect everything like the cancer that they are. Hence, Hussein Obama and the Communist Congress.
It's amazing to me what people (particularly modern Christians) tend to think is the end of education. "America's Schoolmaster" Noah Webster defined education this way,
"All that series of instruction and discipline which is intended to enlighten the understanding, correct the temper, form the manners and habits of youth, and to fit them for usefulness in their future stations." -Webster's 1828 American Dictionary of the English Language
Mr. Webster added that "Education in arts and sciences is important, but a religious education is indespensible. And a heavy responsibility rests on those parents and guardians who neglect these duties."
Of course, Mr. Webster also had a unique understanding of the purpose of our form of government, and from whence its principles ultimately derive. In the preface to his book "History of the United States" Webster wrote:
"The brief exposition of the Constitution of the United States will unfold to young persons the principles of republican government; and it is the sincere desire of the writer that our citizens should early understand that the genuine source of correct republican principles is the BIBLE, particularly the New Testament or the Christian Religion."
We see herein why the NEA rejects both Webster's definition of education and the exposition of the constitution to young folks in its design of curriculum and educational methodology. Beyond the obvious of the separation of political powers between the three branches of government, what more of any substance does the average public school educated American know about the unique qualities of his form of government? What percentage of them can accurately identify (much less quote) relevant passages from the Constitution, the Declaration of Independence, Washington's Farewell Address, or even the Gettysburg Address for that matter?
It really is a wonder to behold that we've managed to retain the bare bones of federal representative Republicanism, and/or any sense of moral responsibility to our posterity.