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Interesting Passages VII…

April 18th, 2009 · No Comments

From Mark R. Levin’s Liberty and Tyranny: A Conservative Manifesto:

In regards to property equaling liberty: “As the individual’s time on Earth is finite, so, too, is his labor. The illegitimate denial or diminution of his private property enslaves him to another and denies him his liberty.”

“A free people living in a civil society, working in self-interested cooperation, and a government operating within the limits of its authority promote more prosperity, opportunity, and happiness for more people than any alternative.” This is such a cut-and-dried, historically upheld idea that I find myself really wondering how anyone in local, state, or national politics can argue for anything else. Yet, so many still seem to believe that huge, overgrown, overreaching government is the way to go.

“Change unconstrained by prudence produces unpredictable consequences, threatening ordered liberty with chaos and ultimately despotism, and placing at risk the very principles the Conservative holds dear.”

“There is profound self-deception at work in people who luxuriate in the fruits of worldly success while disdaining the personal habits and cultural conditions that make such success possible” (quoting University of Tennessee professor Wilfred M. McClay’s The Idea of Change in American Politics: Meaningful Concept or Empty Promise?). Hollywood. Feh! Anyone who takes the opinion of someone like this seriously is dafter than daft.

“Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience” (quoting C.S. Lewis’ God In The Dock: Essays on Theology and Ethics). No one knows better than the individual what is good for the individual. Any other way of thinking is an abject relinquishment of liberty.

Regarding the necessity of faith in society and the dangers of a lack thereof: “…faith is not a threat to civil society but rather vital to its survival.” and (quoting George Washington in his farewell address) “And let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion.”

On governing to the lowest common denominator: “There is no justice, and great harm, in diminishing the whole array of future opportunity to save a few people now from a regrettable fate” (quoting Will Wilkinson’s Failure: For Our Future).

On the supposed “consensus” among scientists that man is directly responsible for the warming of the globe (or “climate change” as it is now called, since the world is actually in a cooling phase, now): “Skepticism is essential to science; consensus is foreign.”

On illegal immigration: “Being without work [in the United States} is still far better for most people than being employed in Central America.” Promoting an open immigration policy is absolutely suicidal to a society when that society also promotes a welfare state.

On readiness (quoting George Washington in his fifth annual message): “There is a rank due to the United States among nations which will be withheld, if not absolutely lost by reputation of weakness. If we desire to avoid insult, we must be able to repel it.; if we desire to secure peace, one of the most powerful instruments of our rising prosperity, it must be known that we are at all times ready for war.”

Regarding preemptive action: “…preemption is prudent. For a government to be irresolute in the face of a growing or imminent threat to its citizenry is suicidal.”

Tags: Literature · politics

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