"When it becomes dominated by a collectivist creed, democracy will inevitably destroy itself." ~ Friedrich August von Hayek
The Grand Illusion
Exclusive to STR
January 23, 2009
I'll tip my hat to the new constitution
Take a bow for the new revolution
Smile and grin at the change all around
Pick up my guitar and play
Just like yesterday
Then I'll get on my knees and pray
We don't get fooled again
Don't get fooled again
Meet the new boss
Same as the old boss
From Don't Get Fooled Again by The Who
The coronation of the new Emperor of the American Empire has recharged the hope of so many. The traditional rituals have been performed by the high priests of democracy putting forth the next great fix-it man. The rituals that soothe the fears of the masses are so superficial that one must take pause before the great spectacle of it all. This new politician will fix the economy, fix medical care, fix the weather, fix racism, etc. where all before have failed. Where is the little girl shouting out that "The Emperor has no clothes!?" The triumph of popularity over reason so prevalent in modern society has resulted in self-delusion as the primary survival strategy. Alas, there is nowhere to start but at the beginning: How did these bozos get so much power over me?
President Obama, just like every other man before him, put his hand on the Bible and swore to God to "protect and defend the Constitution." Perhaps the first couple of fellows were sincere, but nobody takes this oath seriously anymore. So right off the bat, the crowning ceremony requires the new President to lie under oath to assume power. This is very telling, and it's all downhill from there.
The Constitution is a quasi-legal document commonly referred to as a "social contract" that is purported to be the "law of the land," yet is regularly skirted by those who it supposedly restricts. What do you expect when the people it restricts are the same people that get to enforce it? And judge what it says? There is always some reason to reinterpret its heretofore clear meaning, you know, for the greater good. A greater good determined by the consuls of wealthy elite and enforced by their state subordinates.
Cronies who swear an oath to protect and defend that holy document sneer at it as an anachronistic piece of paper. Immediate threats are said to require practical responses void of principle. Liberties must be sacrificed for security or we will all die, so trust the government officials to do the right thing. Therefore, if this "social contract" is considered a dead letter by those who derive their power to govern us from it, then how do they sustain legitimacy for their rule? A hope and a prayer, it seems.
Since it is obvious that the Constitution doesn't work like it is supposed to, then why do supposedly individualistic Americans keep clinging to this ideal of freedom through collective designs? The "social contract" establishing a rule of force by decree should be destroyed when our leaders no longer adhere to it. This is why the elite are in the process of throwing President Bush under the bus. President Bush so flagrantly ignored the rules by doing whatever he wanted that it became too dangerous an example for the unwashed to question his legitimacy to rule. Bush even famously said, "It's just a god-damned piece of paper!" Things were getting out of control as too many people started to notice the sham. Time for a change; a new figurehead to provide new hope.
For some time now it has been popular for right-wing socialists (a.k.a. conservatives) to lament the destruction of the Constitution by those who believe it is a "living, breathing document." This personification of documents is consistent with the cartoonish level of analysis prevalent among left-wing socialists (a.k.a. liberals). There is bipartisan support for the political strategy that the Constitution is only useful when it agrees with your agenda, or more popularly, when it restricts the agenda of the other guy. Only one man in my lifetime has consistently stayed true to his oath of office. Yet the masses march to the tune played by these fakes who openly commit fraud and murder in their names without missing a beat.
The Jack Bauer fanatics who constantly hear the Mission: Impossible theme whistling in the back of their brains as they plan SWAT team raids to storm in to look under every bed in the country for terrorists agree with the flower child hippies putting daisies in all the guns and getting high while evil-doers sneak by under their naïve, pacifist noses: Nobody believes Federal Rulers anymore when they pledge their oaths to protect and defend the Constitution because they obviously don't have to. Is the majority of American psyches really that brainwashed by generations of self-glorifying lies? Well, yea, duh!
There is no denying that the United States Constitution is one of the greatest documents ever written establishing a state. The clear, concise language establishing guidelines for wanna-be tyrants stands above all previous attempts by far and I have yet to see a better one written since. Going as we were from lazy monarchs fixated on their amusements and smug in their superior "positions" to liberty seeking merchants who challenged their exploitation and tyranny makes it a significant accomplishment. However, the royalist (or in the U.S. , the Hamiltonian) influence on republican states still manifests itself through the Leader Principle indoctrinated with democracy worship. So freedom and liberty have devolved into a popularity contest to determine who gets to be dictator. It is time to move on.
The point of a "social contract" is to establish legitimacy for authority within a society by formalizing the submission of individual sovereignty to that authority. This ceremonious ritual serves the elites who write the document the same as a marriage ceremony does declaring a bond for life before all to see and hear. A ritual that is complete with a contract, but distinctly different in that there are no consenting parties and it dissolves at the death of one of the parties. After having this ritual to declare this version of groupthink a reality, the head conspirators then sign the contract (wait for it) for the people! The state apparatus is thus created to administer an eternal bond between the Alpha Collective Corporation and The People. Notice again how this process eliminates individuals and never dissolves.
Decision making processes are central to assessing degrees of liberty. Self-governing individuals make decisions for themselves. Individuals who submit to rulers must therefore submit to their rules. Obedience and conformity become the ultimate virtues under this type of order. Society is never allowed to grow up, but is forever to be ruled by a few chosen ones. Perpetual childhood is not the ideal way to organize society in my view. If you have never read Lysander Spooner on this subject, please do here (start with the No Treason essays).
That bondage is so natural to humans does not mean that society can't mature past such childish institutions. The crumbling of states today is a sign of collective puberty coming to an end. Society must now grow up and this is a good thing. We must all, each of us, be ready to govern ourselves when the state collapses in bankruptcy. Violent revolution is not required in most places, especially in America . Americans feel a bond that goes beyond those who worship the state as if it were the giver of life. Family, friends, neighbors, associates, competitors, groups, leagues, clubs, companies and churches do not need a state to guide them, regulate or organize them. A lot of people in our society have grown up and no longer require surveillance, regulation and intervention by those with the power to do so.
When the façade protecting the grand illusion of collective authority embodied in leaders to act for you, by you and to you is buried in bankruptcy, many individuals will feel lost and alone. We must reach out to them with calm and reason while providing an example of maturity. Most people are in denial that the structure of order breast fed to them since childhood is really nothing more than a means of controlling them. They are scared because their entire worldviews are getting shattered, but they must realize that they are only losing their chains. Just because something is a tradition doesn't make it right. Asking "What Fearless Leader can fix the system?" is asking the wrong question. We should ask a more basic question: "What gives other men the right to rule me?"
Mark Davis is a husband, father and real estate analyst/investor enjoying the freedoms we still have in Longwood, Florida.
The Grand Illusion
by Mark Davis