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13 July 2012

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SteveB

Taxes were, and always will be, a proxy for "freedom." What's the difference between the colonialists and the current "Sovereign Citizens"? 236 years about covers it. People do NOT want to be told what to do. They do NOT want to be dictated to. Well, tough. Although nobody likes taxes it's indisputable that to live together in a civilized society that taxes must be levied and payed.

The rest is just arguing over who pays what and FOR what....but if the electoral process can effectively be rigged, either through controlling who votes or disseminating propaganda that fools people into voting one way or the other, then even that can be called into question.

What's the average net worth of a representative to Congress? A senator?

mbrenner

I presume that Burke did not you use the terms "people' "granting their money" to mean voluntary donations. Even in his day when the vast majority of people had little or no say over anything, it was recognized authority that legitimately represnted the community of Burke's select band of "people."

Let's face it - taxes are the price we pay for civilization. Other freedom is just the freedom we had in Hobbes' state of nature to flee or fight in our bare feet on any given day. In more modern times, by this definition we were freer before the federal income tax was legislated. If we returned to yesteryear, there would be enormous suffering - but here at home rather than in Iraq, Afghanistan, and sundry other places where our taxes pay for the jihad of promoting the freedoms that many of us seem prepared to interpret as all against all.

turcopolier

mbrenner

I did not realize that you are a devotee of the Leviathan state. The question is what taxes, in what amounts and approved by whom and for what. pl

mbrenner

Colonel

Those are decisions to be taken by persons following procedures incorporated in our constitution and laws. If we reject that concept in the name of freedom, or pick-and-choose, then indeed there is no alternative but a lapse back into anarchy or the Leviathon. What we have achieved is a reconciliation of individual freedom and the capacity for legitimate collective action. Over the past 70 years, the countries of the developed world have built within that political infrastructure the most successful, just and free societies the world has ever known - or even imagined. I believe this to be true by any humanitarian standard. We (here and in much of Europe) are well along in the process of dismantling that creation for the most vane reasons. We will deserve the condemnation that history surely has in store for us.

A few words about Burke. He is best known for his critque of the democratic concept that spawned the French Revolution and the abuse of it. We do not study a related Burke - that is the Burke who inveighed against commerce, against industry, against rational technique or organization, and most vehemently against Jews who he claimed were the diabolical embodiment of those evils. Bismarck was one person on whom he had a great influence. there were many others - few admirable figures.
In the 20th century, we experienced the bitter fruits of both Jacobinism and atavistic Burkism. Let's celebrate our having surmounted them.

The Twisted Genius

Just from the quotes in this document, Burke created a pretty accurate description of the developing nature of the early Americans. Especially considering he relied on written documents sent by ship from 3,000 miles away to create it. Burke's characterization of those early Americans, his contemporaries, reminds me of the portrait of those same early Americans created by Eric Sloane in the late 20th century. IMO Sloane's philosophy of awareness and declaration of self dependence captures the essence of those early Americans, especially the rural New Englanders. I have quite a few of his richly illustrated books. They remind me of the land of my youth.

http://www.ericsloane-awareness.com/philosophy.html

http://www.ericsloane.com/declare.htm

turcopolier

mbrenner

I appear to have wounded your liberal sensibilities in this and the Indian piece. i think Bismarck was admirable. His statement to the effect that genius lies in knowing when to stop was indicative of a mindset that helped keep Europe from disastrous war in his lifetime. With regard to the noble Red Man, perhaps you have not noticed that there are many, many Indians in North America and many more people with Indian blood just as there are many people in England with ancient British blood. The American Indian in his great variety fought savage wars of extermination and subjugation throughout the Americas. To think that the Europeans who conquered the Americas were more cruel and rapacious than those they found here is just sentimentality and incorrect. European colonization was unfair? Come now... What is fair in such matters? War is not an athletic event. pl

Alba Etie

Col Lang
It is well documented that the Comanches kept not only other Tribes but the Mexicans and most Europeans out of their territory for many decades by ruthless war making .

turcopolier

AE

"The finest light cavalry in the world" that's what Ranald Mackenzie called them after he decisively defeated them and killed their horse herd at the Palo Duro Canyon in 1874. pl

Babak Makkinejad

Civilization is not a value, it is just another machine built to sustain large numbers of human beings from their births to their deaths.

Taxes in support of the poor and the indegent are an acto f Charity. Charity is not an act of civilized men; it is an act of Religious men.

Hindus were civilized for a long time but had no notion of charity until Muslims invaded India.

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