THE AMERICAN DREAM LIVES ON
July 19, 2010
The center of gravity in a republic, such as the United States, is the people and not the unit of government per se. All of us recall the words of Thomas Carlyle "Let each become all that he was created capable of being." We cannot say it any better than that and therein is a hope of all Americans. Also, we recall the motto of the State University of New York "To Learn...To Search ...To Serve." That too is so much a part of the American Dream.
We live in America where we treasure liberty, freedom, and hope. Every person, regardless of birth, social, or financial standing, should have the shining opportunity for success and happiness and, to feel safe and secure from enemies both foreign and domestic. Each person deserves the right to live, to be one's self, and to become all for which she or he is capable. Each individual deserves the right to reside and work in an environment where there is confidence in our economic and monetary system. And, to live where the economy is garnered and supported by a vibrant free market system with free market solutions to meet the economic and social challenges of the day. It was President Kennedy who so nobly stated: "A nation that is afraid to let its people judge the truth and falsehood in an open market is a nation that is afraid of its people." Government legislation did not outlaw typewriters and demand the use of computers, free markets did. The only true lasting change is that which the market brings and supports.
Each person deserves to have the opportunity to live a wholesome and productive life and to be able to attend to the unmet needs of loved ones and those of needy neighbors wherever they might be. This is so much a part of the American Dream.
In the United States' Declaration of Independence, our founding fathers stated: "...we hold certain truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they Are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness." Could these words be the foundational setting for the American Dream? We believe in a "harmony of interest," as Adam Smith put it, and rules of cooperation that have developed through generations of human experience and collective reasoning. These rules promote the betterment of the individual and society. And thus, each individual through one's own pursuit should have an equal opportunity to achieve the fruits of the American dream.
As part of our American dream, private property and liberty are inseparable. The individual's right to live freely and safely and pursue happiness includes the right to acquire and possess property, which represents the fruits of one's own intellectual and/or physical labors. The denial or diminution of one's private property or the collectivization of that property by government denies that person the right to liberty and thereby seriously encroaches on one's freedom. And further, excessive taxation diminishes ones right to enjoy the bounty of their life and labor. Unfortunately, current events seem to suggest that this is the track on which we are headed.
With the fast moving events of our times, willful ignorance of realty is no virtue. True wisdom suggests that when driving in the wrong direction, one does not step on the pedal and go faster, but one turns around and gets back on track. It is time to get back on track!
Liberty carries with it the moral imperative that all in our society must have the opportunity to live and work in a society where there is homeland security and where our national interests are protected elsewhere. It is imperative there be an end to the war waged against profit and prosperity and that we stabilize our bleeding economy, control our egregious deficit, put an end to generational theft, balance the federal budget and work toward the renewal of sources for energy independence. And further, these three imperatives appear to be essential: where there is no more apologizing on foreign shores for our American Exceptionalism, where the out of control national debt is ended, and where there is the utilization of free market solutions to solve the challenges facing our times.
These matters weigh heavily on the minds of most Americans. Something is wrong and most Americans sense it. The center of gravity in a republic, such as the United States, is the people. On election day and every day is the day we can keep the American Dream alive and well.
The American Dream is that we live in a land in which life is better and richer and fuller for everyone, with opportunity for each according to their ability and achievement. It is spurred on by hope, faith and charity, with a vision for the future, resilience for the now, and appreciation for the past. This dream is guided by moral virtue, transmitted by a determined zeal, under girded by a noble work ethic, and valued by a sense of accomplishment for ALL and encouragement for the many. And that is how I see it from FROM THIS PERSPECTIVE.