Thursday, May 7, 2009

Still Learning

Over the past year or so I have been forced to challenge everything I have ever been taught about civics, social studies and social interaction, history and politics. I used to consider myself as more of a republican than anything else, though there were and always have been things that I very reluctantly accepted as being correct. Thinking that “well, its coming from a person with an ‘R’ next to their name so its probably more right than wrong.”

Since the primaries of last year I started asking myself questions that weren’t easily answered in any form of media that I could find. I would watch news shows like Fox, CNN, HLN and BBC and always felt like there was something amiss and because of this it was extremely difficult for me to determine for myself what was correct and why.

Then I was able to finally put my finger on it. Nearly everything I had ever been taught, and all the things I had reluctantly accepted as truth were indeed wrong or at least only partially right. This convinced me that Republicans and Democrats alike were primarily wrong in their approach. They were all wrong.

This really hit home to me early in the winter when Evanston was visited by one of our senators and I asked him a question that went something like this “Senator Barrasso, our military is currently spread across 130 +/- countries, we are currently fighting two wars in a region where there has been war for literally thousands of years, wars that we cannot win and our empire is costing us over a trillion dollars a year…..Is there any attempt whatever to bring the troops home and dismantle the empire?”

He thought for a second and replied with something like “That’s a great question and I’m glad you asked it. You know, after 9/11 everything changed. We are actively fighting two wars and I want to make sure we take our hats off to those brave young men and women who have left their families and put their lives in harm’s way for the protection of America. God bless our veterans and thank God that there are so many willing to fight for our freedom.”

I hope that you are thinking what I was thinking at that time, which can be summed up by: “What the hell?” That didn’t even come close to answering any part of my question.

The reason why is he didn’t have an answer. He did not have any principles whereon to base his answer so he danced around it and spit out the official Republican party line. I truly wanted to vomit after I heard it. This is not to say that the good senator is not well intentioned I'm sure he has only the best of intentions.

I decided then that party didn’t really mean very much because if you take a step back, it doesn’t matter who the president has been or what party he’s been affiliated with, the drift is in the same direction, sometimes faster, sometimes slower but the same direction none the less. That is to say we are becoming (and for all intents and purposes are) a warfare, welfare, police, social engineering, socialized empire and getting worse.

So I decided that I needed to give myself the education that school never gave me, specifically in regard to our constitution and free market economics. What I am learning is that we don’t follow the constitution, except for term lengths. But I’m sure that too will eventually change. We follow so little of our own constitution that few even recognize when and how often it is violated. When someone brings up an important constitutional principle that has long been forgotten everyone thinks they are crazy, out-dated, crazy, an extremist, crazy and crazy. This is clearly evident with the entire Ron Paul revolution which by the way, is in no way over. I feel crazy half of the time. Just ask Sarah how many times I ask her if I am in fact crazy. Maybe she’s just being nice. If she is just being nice I would appreciate a heads up.

I couldn’t have told you much about the constitution a year ago and I am still learning about it more everyday. I certainly don’t want to come off like I know everything (or anything) because frankly, what I know could fit in a thimble with some extra space to spare.

The driving point is this: when you have the principles and in this case when you have the constitution of the United States, it makes it incredibly easy to cut to the quick. Now when I hear news or hear of situations it is easy to think of the solution because it is principle based not politically based.

Our government has done such a flawless job of making it so that no one can understand anything and they eventually lose interest. It is supposed to be boring. Very few people find it interesting at all. You are supposed to keep your head down, do what you’re told and for crying out loud listen to the mainstream media, they are telling you exactly what to think.

In reality I find that getting ripped off continually, waging unjust wars, silently taking the rights away from the people, etc. is incredibly interesting.

On top of this no one wants to figure out that what they believe has been fundamentally false. Trust me, I can tell you from personal and ongoing experience that it is difficult to come to terms with that reality but once you do it is incredibly liberating. It is just like seeking out and finding any other truth, it sets the world right.

Just a quick footnote - everyone has their favorite places to get information but if you are looking for another good spot to go visit there are some very good sites linked on the sidebar of this blog, particularly the Ludvig Von Mises Institute.


ryan and danielle said...

i have been realizing this more and completley conrols what the majority thinks because the majority is not porperly educated on politics and the back stories to events that happen. and you are right, we are taught that politics is boring so we just go with the flow on most things...cause we aren't taught to question and find things out for ourselves.

you may be a little crazy but not insane. :)