Our rights do not originate with government, but they are to be "secured" by government.
Formerly: Libertarian Party of Citrus county

Monday, September 16, 2013

Basis of the Libertarian World View

By Tom Rhodes, 9/16/2013

I have a world view, you have a world view, everybody has a world view. As Libertarians we rightly attack and denounce the Left-Right flat line view of politics,. (see world's smallest political quiz), because it's a false world view. Everybody's world view is not just political but it is based on our beliefs about the nature of man, where he came from; what's his value; is he inherently good, bad, or something else? Everyone's world view is what forms the foundation for what they believe about a host of worldview issues: ethics, politics, economics and more.

One of our founding fathers, William Penn, expressed his world view of society succinctly, saying;
"The public has been deluded about the material aims of a few and the very existence of the hidden rulers who sit at the very pinnacle of power and see themselves as lords of this planet...

If the men in leadership positions in the world do not know the objective of life then they are not capable of administering a peaceful society? If however they do know, then what we see happening in the world is the deliberate attempt to undermine the primary objective of life. The missing dimension in world politics is the spiritual dimension. The problems of life cannot be solved by material means. Modern civilization is missing the point of life. Human life is meant for understanding spiritual values. Real knowledge is knowing yourself, what you are, what God is...

When men are not governed by God they will be ruled by tyrants."

If you work under the singular belief that man is inherently good, such belief probably leads you to a underlying resentment for the institutions are responsible for evil. Since man isn't to blame, the rational conclusion is moral relativism, and outside influences like corporations, or economic status, or "the man" are the impudence for inherently good people to do bad things. This denies the clear evidence history has shown us, as we saw in the recent random murder in by a young man who was "bored." People are not inherently good, they are sinners.

If you work under the singular belief that man is inherently bad, such belief probably leads you to a underlying hatred for individual liberty, as bad people without restrictions are responsible for evil. Since all men are evil, the rational conclusion is usually totalitarian control to protect people from their evil tendencies. This denies the clear evidence history has shown us as we see in not only the small random acts of kindness, but in such institutions as St. Jude's Research hospital, that cares for children with cancer and never sends a bill, or the billions of dollars and hours we donate to charities all around us; People are not inherently evil, they are made in God's Image, and he is good.

Christianity, in the "age of enlightenment," lead our forefathers to a clear world view that resulted in both the Declaration of Independence and our Constitution, thus creating a divided government because they understood that although men cannot be trusted to govern themselves they must be trusted to govern themselves. So a divided government to dilute the evil any man may do and emphasize the good we can all do. What they believed and what it has been proven fact is that that freedom is critical to human existence. The number of quotes from Washington, Adams, etc made it clear that they believed that true freedom is only found in living by God's moral code.

The world view of Society sways from one extreme (anarchy) to another (totalitarianism), all based on believing first man is good, then man is evil, struggling to understand why nothing works. This is one of the reasons that we in the USA are so divided on fundamental issues of economics and politics and even war. We are divided because we are so fundamentally confused about the nature of man. Our forefathers discovered one thing that has proven to work, the old story that the World rejects is that Man was created in God's image, were pronounced good, but committed evil acts (sinned) and fell from grace. Like Adam and Eve, created in God's image all mankind has eternal worth, but like Adam and Eve mankind is inherently flawed. This understanding with the understanding that man can find redemption is the world view that lead to the USA, an a world view that lead to more people living in relative luxury and wealth, where even the poor have an obesity problem, than any world view ever.

William Penn's world view is why he is "the first great hero of American liberty. During the late seventeenth century, when Protestants persecuted Catholics, Catholics persecuted Protestants, and both persecuted Quakers and Jews, Penn established an American sanctuary which protected freedom of conscience. Almost everywhere else, colonists stole land from the Indians, but Penn traveled unarmed among the Indians and negotiated peaceful purchases. He insisted that women deserved equal rights with men. He gave Pennsylvania a written constitution which limited the power of government, provided a humane penal code, and guaranteed many fundamental liberties.

For the first time in modem history, a large society offered equal rights to people of different races and religions. Penn's dramatic example caused quite a stir in Europe. The French philosopher Voltaire, a champion of religious toleration, offered lavish praise. "William Penn might, with reason, boast of having brought down upon earth the Golden Age, which in all probability, never had any real existence but in his dominions.'"**

Today it can easily be argued that Ron Paul is the most pronounced representative of libertarianism. He is also an openly Christian man. Say what you want, but libertarian ideas and thought from William Penn to Ron Paul, are based on a Christian World View. Today we are seeing the collapse of a Christian World View, and the truth of John Adams observation, "Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other."

"In selecting men for office, let principle be your guide. Regard not the particular sect or denomination of the candidate -- look at his character. It is alleged by men of loose principles, or defective views of the subject, that religion and morality are not necessary or important qualifications for political stations. But the scriptures teach a different doctrine. They direct that rulers should be men who rule in the fear of God, men of truth, hating covetousness. It is to the neglect of this rule that we must ascribe the multiplied frauds, breaches of trust, speculations and embezzlements of public property which astonish even ourselves; which tarnish the character of our country and which disgrace our government. When a citizen gives his vote to a man of known immorality, he abuses his civic responsibility; he not only sacrifices his own responsibility; he sacrifices not only his own interest, but that of his neighbor; he betrays the interest of his country." ~ Noah Webster

"Human rights can only be assured among a virtuous people. The general government . . . can never be in danger of degenerating into a monarchy, an oligarchy, an aristocracy, or any despotic or oppresive form so long as there is any virtue in the body of the people." ~ George Washington

"No people will tamely surrender their Liberties, nor can any be easily subdued, when knowledge is diffused and Virtue is preserved. On the Contrary, when People are universally ignorant, and debauched in their Manners, they will sink under their own weight without the Aid of foreign Invaders." ~ Samuel Adams

"Only a virtuous people are capable of freedom. As nations become more corrupt and vicious, they have more need of masters." ~ Benjamin Franklin

"Perfect freedom consists in obeying the dictates of right reason, and submitting to natural law. When a man goes beyond or contrary to the law of nature and reason, he introduces confusion and disorder into society thus where licentiousness begins, liberty ends." ~ Samuel West

"It is in the manners and spirit of a people which preserve a republic in vigour. . . . degeneracy in these is a canker which soon eats into the heart of its laws and constitution." ~ Thomas Jefferson

"The institution of delegated power implies that there is a portion of virtue and honor among mankind which may be a reasonable foundation of confidence." ~ Alexander Hamilton

"To suppose that any form of government will secure liberty or happiness without any virtue in the people, is a chimerical idea." ~ James Madison

"Bad men cannot make good citizens. It is when a people forget God that tyrants forge their chains. A vitiated state of morals, a corrupted public conscience, is incompatible with freedom. No free government, or the blessings of liberty, can be preserved to any people but by a firm adherence to justice, moderation, temperance, frugality, and virtue; and by a frequent recurrence to fundamental principles." ~ Patrick Henry

"Statesmen, my dear Sir, may plan and speculate for liberty, but it is religion and morality alone, which can establish the principles upon which freedom can securely stand. The only foundation of a free Constitution is pure virtue, and if this cannot be inspired into our People in a greater Measure than they have it now, they may change their rulers and the forms of government, but they will not obtain a lasting liberty." ~ John Adams

"Our liberty depends on our education, our laws, and habits . . . it is founded on morals and religion, whose authority reigns in the heart, and on the influence all these produce on public opinion before that opinion governs rulers." ~ Fisher Ames

"The diminution of public virtue is usually attended with that of public happiness, and the public liberty will not long survive the total extinction of morals." Samuel Adams

"... the manners of the people in general are of the utmost moment to the stability of any civil society. When the body of a people are altogether corrupt in their manners, the government is ripe for dissolution. So true is this, that civil liberty cannot be long preserved without virtue." ~ John Witherspoon

"Manners are of more importance than laws. Upon them in great measure the laws depend. The law touches us but here and there, and now and then. Manners are what vex and smooth, corrupt or purify, exalt or debase, barbarize or refine us, by a constant, steady, uniform, insensible operation, like that of the air we breathe in. They give their whole form and color to our lives. According to their quality, they aid morals, they support them, or they totally destroy them." ~ Edmund Burke

"Men are qualified for civil liberty in exact proportion to their disposition to put moral chains upon their appetites; in proportion as their love of justice is above their rapacity; in proportion as their soundness and sobriety of understanding is above their vanity and presumption; in proportion as they are more disposed to listen to the counsel of the wise and good, in preference to the flattery of knaves. Society cannot exist unless a controlling power upon will and appetite be placed somewhere, and the less of it there is within, the more there must be without. It is ordained in the eternal constitution of things, that men of intemperate minds cannot be free. Their passions forge their fetters." ~ Edmund Burke

Over 100 years ago Teddy Roosevelt told us what would happen when we embraced the idea that all religions and cultures were equal. "To educate a man in mind and not in morals is to educate a menace to society." ~ Theodore Roosevelt

William Penn's now immortal words are coming true, "When men are not governed by God they will be ruled by tyrants."

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