Wednesday, May 10, 2006
Dictatorship and despotism thrive when ignorance and stupidity rule societies. “If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be,” Thomas Jefferson declared in 1816. At the time, the populace of America understood the powers of sovereignty are vested in the people and are exercised by the people, not the government. Americans read and comprehended the Preamble of the Constitution, where specific tasks are assigned to government. In the early 19th century, John Locke’s “liberal” philosophy of natural rights (universal rights derived from natural law) inspired and guided many Americans. Now most Americans follow the philosophy of Thomas Hobbes, although they have no idea of Hobbes or what he wrote about government. Hobbes believed that sovereignty was vested in the state. As an example of the Hobbesian state, consider that most Americans believe only the government may grant “civil rights,” when in fact rights are natural, much like the physical laws of nature, and inalienable, that is to say the government cannot take them away.
Posted by NotASheep at 11:55 PM