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do James Madison’s warnings about freedom matter to our lives?

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  • Tue, May 05, 2009 - 02:14am

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    strabes

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    do James Madison’s warnings about freedom matter to our lives?

There’s some opinion on this site that discussing matters of freedom and tyranny doesn’t "matter to our lives," or that posts on those topics seem to come from "loony" people.  These opinions aren’t just saying they disagree with how people bring their topics, but rather they’re saying the topics are not legitimate to bring.

Why imply that the citizens of the United States are off-base if they agree with our founders that we should never give up freedom for security, or because they want to debate the policies/actions of the pentagon/homeland infrastructure in the spirit of our founders who said excessive executive power = tyranny? The reason this matters to our lives is because this is a country where power theoretically rests in the hands of the people.  If the people don’t actively engage and debate what the government is doing (the responses to the terror war, the basis for the terror war, the responses to the economic collapse which parallel quite nicely with the facts in other countries that got sucked into tyranny), and they only plant gardens, then power rests in the hands of an unchecked executive branch, which again according to our founders is the basis for tyranny. Planting gardens is essential…it’s on my list when I move…but that alone doesn’t fulfill our duty as citizens of what used to be and maybe can be again a federal republic.  James Madison’s view:

 

 

Of all the enemies to public liberty war is, perhaps, the most to be dreaded, because it comprises and develops the germ of every other. War is the parent of armies; from these proceed debts and taxes; and armies, and debts, and taxes are the known instruments for bringing the many under the domination of the few. In war, too, the discretionary power of the Executive is extended; its influence in dealing out offices, honors, and emoluments is multiplied; and all the means of seducing the minds, are added to those of subduing the force, of the people…. [There is also an] inequality of fortunes, and the opportunities of fraud, growing out of a state of war, and … degeneracy of manners and of morals…. No nation could preserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare.

A standing military force, with an overgrown Executive will not long be safe companions to liberty. The means of defence agst. foreign danger, have been always the instruments of tyranny at home. Among the Romans it was a standing maxim to excite a war, whenever a revolt was apprehended. Throughout all Europe, the armies kept up under the pretext of defending, have enslaved the people.

 

Relating to this issue, it seems there are 2 dynamics happening on this site:  1) a group of people who desperately want to find a forum for discussing these supremely important issues because the "public forum" in the media doesn’t address them at all but rather it focuses on Obama’s dog and swine flu, and 2) a group of people who want to keep this site focused on sustainable community discussions.  It makes no sense for one group to slam the other.  Both of these groups are entirely legitimate.  Both groups are trying to find their way in this world.  Rather, than jumping on each other, Chris should make a definitive statement that, though group #1 is important and these are very legitimate issues to discuss, it’s not the purpose of this site so he will not allow such discussion.  If Chris does not make this statement, then he’s implicitly stating he’s ok with group #1 discussing those topics and group #2 should not criticize them for focusing on things that don’t matter.

 

 

 

  • Tue, May 05, 2009 - 02:42am

    #2
    Peak Prosperity Admin

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    Re: do James Madison’s warnings about freedom matter to our …

 You cannot discuss economics without discussing liberty.  In fact, you cannot have an economy without liberty.  So, I can’t imagine why discussions of liberty shouldn’t be allowed on this site, but I also do not see a need for Chris to make a statement one way or the other.  I don’t mind defending myself.  Attacks can only educate me or make me stronger.

  • Tue, May 05, 2009 - 02:46am

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    Re: do James Madison’s warnings about freedom matter to our …

short answer no

question ………………who is james madison?

  • Tue, May 05, 2009 - 03:02am

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    Re: do James Madison’s warnings about freedom matter to our …

[quote=strabes]Relating to this issue, it seems there are 2 dynamics happening on this site:  1) a group of people who desperately want to find a forum for discussing these supremely important issues because the "public forum" in the media doesn’t address them at all but rather it focuses on Obama’s dog and swine flu, and 2) a group of people who want to keep this site focused on sustainable community discussions.  It makes no sense for one group to slam the other.  Both of these groups are entirely legitimate.  Both groups are trying to find their way in this world.  Rather, than jumping on each other, Chris should make a definitive statement that, though group #1 is important and these are very legitimate issues to discuss, it’s not the purpose of this site so he will not allow such discussion.  If Chris does not make this statement, then he’s implicitly stating he’s ok with group #1 discussing those topics and group #2 should not criticize them for focusing on things that don’t matter.[/quote]

Very well stated!

  • Tue, May 05, 2009 - 03:03am

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    Re: do James Madison’s warnings about freedom matter to our …

Strabes,

Discussions of the founding fathers take on liberty and our responsibilities is something that actually does good.

Encouraging people to understand the rights and responsibilities of citizenship is not "loony" talk, as is the endless bickering about who’s conspiring about what. This type of discussion has everything the conspiracy does not; it educates and opens dialogue on how society should function, and helps us understand the problems we’re entrenched in.

So, perhaps we should discuss what’s "legitimate" as well.
By being active in our community, state and regional politics; educating people to the principles on which we were founded and the ideals of free market capitalism are absolutely legitimate.

To the "some" out there who think that some topics are a waste of time – perhaps the hint should be taken for those who want to discuss unsubstantiated conjectural conspiracies. I’m sure most everyone will agree the founding fathers don’t fall under this topic.

Cheers.

Aaron

  • Tue, May 05, 2009 - 03:11am

    #6
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    Re: do James Madison’s warnings about freedom matter to our …

joe, he lives down your street.

Thanks doc!

aaron, I guess the murky area is where people are trying to talk about some of the stuff our "standing army" today (DOD, Homeland, CIA, NSA, state police, etc) is doing.  In my mind this is directly relevant to Madison’s concerns. In other people’s minds it approaches "conspiracy theory."  

 

  • Tue, May 05, 2009 - 03:23am

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    Re: do James Madison’s warnings about freedom matter to our …

 [quote] I guess the murky area is where people are trying to talk about some of the stuff our "standing army" today (DOD, Homeland, CIA, NSA, state police, etc) is doing.  In my mind this is directly relevant to Madison’s concerns. In other people’s minds it approaches "conspiracy theory."  [/quote]

Strabes,

In my mind, a "conspiracy theory" is just like any other theory, except it invokes the coordinated and covert actions of a number of people to explain observed phenomena.  I don’t understand why Conspiracy Theorists are so sensitive to this term.  What would be a better term for theories that invoke coordinated and covert actions of a number of people to explain observed phenomena?

  • Tue, May 05, 2009 - 03:27am

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    Peak Prosperity Admin

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    Re: do James Madison’s warnings about freedom matter to our …

What an excellent post strabes.

It seems like there is an element in here that, no matter how much evidence you supply them; no matter that science is heavily weighing on one side of the argument and there is absolutely no science or logic on the other side, they simply don’t care. In fact, they will just stick their collective heads in the sand and pretend that the argument prevailing the discussion does not even exist. In one thread, I addressed several people to debate a topic trying to get them to logically discuss point A, then B, then C, let’s reach some conclusions.

Nope. The attitude is: I know I cannot win any points in this discussion, now how do I make this all go away.

Many people read in here. People are not stupid. They can see through this illogical diatribe as they read in and it is not positive to the forum or the CM message to make intellectually collective fools of ourselves in public; I for one am convinced that this is just what some of us are doing.

And I agree that many are simply willing to let our freedoms go. So, your government is what it is, what can we do about it? Let’s just move out on our little farms, become isolationists and let life pass us by. Excuse me while I don’t worry about the causes that got me here, I’ll just go plant my garden, milk my goat and it will all go away. Uh huh……it won’t go away until we address the inner issues that have got us to this point and we cannot address them unless we discuss them and understand them.

I totally agree with you that our founding fathers espoused that excessive government is tyranny. What are we living under now other than excess government? This is not tyranny? Tyranny is here, yet many people’s answer to address this problem is to go get a cow and some chickens. What?

That is a very small semi-solution to one little part of a very big problem. Let’s discuss the big problem while we milk the goats. Why is that proposition mutually exclusive?

 

 

 

  • Tue, May 05, 2009 - 03:47am

    #9
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    Re: do James Madison’s warnings about freedom matter to our …

[quote=ccpetersmd]

[quote=strabes]Relating to this issue, it seems there are 2 dynamics happening on this site:  1) a group of people who desperately want to find a forum for discussing these supremely important issues because the "public forum" in the media doesn’t address them at all but rather it focuses on Obama’s dog and swine flu, and 2) a group of people who want to keep this site focused on sustainable community discussions.  It makes no sense for one group to slam the other.  Both of these groups are entirely legitimate.  Both groups are trying to find their way in this world.  Rather, than jumping on each other, Chris should make a definitive statement that, though group #1 is important and these are very legitimate issues to discuss, it’s not the purpose of this site so he will not allow such discussion.  If Chris does not make this statement, then he’s implicitly stating he’s ok with group #1 discussing those topics and group #2 should not criticize them for focusing on things that don’t matter.[/quote]

Very well stated!

[/quote]

Strabes,

I agree with Dr Peters as regards your post. We recently attended the Lowesville Seminar and prior to arriving we visited the home of Thomas Jefferson in Charlottesville VA and came away with a renewed understanding about the man and what he stood for. Jeffersons’ viewpoint that a populace which was not educated or was unable to engage in dialogue as regards the issues which faced them would not be able to sustain their liberty. The book "Thomas Jefferson on Leadership" by Coy Barefoot is a good read into the values he  shared with our young nation.

A problem we all face today is how one individual can make a difference in the outcome of issues we face. Certainly our governments choice to turn their back on overwhelming opposition to the "bailout" last fall was a good example of governance without regard to public opinion.  But that does not mean that we should disregard broader issues in favor of affecting change in only our garden either.

IMHO this site is in support of both #1 and #2 issues which you outlined above and I doubt very seriously that CM would take issue with either subject. He may be dissappointed with whining and sniveling between groups however!  I am too. Can we move on?

Coop

  • Tue, May 05, 2009 - 04:05am

    #10
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    Re: do James Madison’s warnings about freedom matter to our …

You guys have made good points, now do something about it. You want liberty and justice? It doesnt happen with everyone bickering about different views. As I said in other threads, as long as we sit here, veins popping and testosterone filled behind our computers, and arguing about material from questionable sources, the government will always have the power. When we gather in mass, with a common goal, thats when we have the power, and thats what the government is trying to prevent. You guys are serving your governments own purpose, divide and conquer; therefore, you will never have liberty, justice, or freedom.

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