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Champion of Liberty: Thomas Sowell Quotes

Champion of Liberty:

Thomas Sowell Quotes

Born June 30, 1930

Eleven Great Thomas Sowell Quotes

Jerome Hudson

Legendary economist, author, and social theorist Dr. Thomas Sowell submitted his final column Tuesday after 25 years in syndication.

thomassowell“Even the best things come to an end. After enjoying a quarter of a century of writing this column for Creators Syndicate, I have decided to stop. Age 86 is well past the usual retirement age, so the question is not why I am quitting, but why I kept at it so long,” Dr. Sowell wrote.

For more than fifty years, Dr. Sowell has published books and journals on race, economics, cultures around the world, and government policy. He has inspired generations of conservative activists with his humor and ability to condense complex matters into relatable lessons learns.

A self-proclaimed Marxist in his twenties, Sowell served in the United States Marine Corps. (during the Korean War). He earned his bachelor’s degree from Harvard University, his masters from Columbia University, and his Ph.D from the University of Chicago. It was at the University of Chicago, under the tutelage of Milton Friedman, and after his short stint as an economic analyst at the U.S. Department of Labor, where Dr. Sowell lost faith in government institutions’ ability to effectuate positive outcomes in society.

Dr. Sowell has taught economics at Cornell University and UCLA and has been a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University since 1980.

Dr. Sowell’s books, columns, and photography can be found at his website tsowell.com. Below are a handful of the most influential quotes from America’s great living philosopher.

1. The Welfare State:

welfare-stateThe blacks in the West Indies had all sorts of experiences growing their own food, selling the surplus in the market, and, in fact, being responsible for budgeting what they had. Black [slaves] in the United States were deliberately kept from having that. Dependence was seen as the key to holding the slaves down. It’s ironic that that same principle comes up in the welfare state 100 years later.

The black family survived centuries of slavery and generations of Jim Crow, but it has disintegrated in the wake of the liberals’ expansion of the welfare state.

2.  A Legacy of Liberalism:

liberal-compassion-thomas-sowellNearly a hundred years of the supposed “legacy of slavery” found most black children being raised in two-parent families in 1960. But thirty years after the liberal welfare state found the great majority of black children being raised by a single parent.

The murder rate among blacks in 1960 was one-half of what it became 20 years later, after a legacy of liberals’ law enforcement policies. Public housing projects in the first half of the 20th century were clean, safe places, where people slept outside on hot summer nights, when they were too poor to afford air conditioning. That was before admissions standards for public housing projects were lowered or abandoned, in the euphoria of liberal non-judgmental notions. And it was before the toxic message of victimhood was spread by liberals.…

If we are to go by evidence of social retrogression, liberals have wreaked more havoc on blacks than the supposed “legacy of slavery” they talk about.

3. The Failure of Government Bureaucracy: A Personal Odyssey:

bureaucratscautionsignIn the summer of 1959, as in the summer of 1957, I worked as a clerk-typist in the headquarters of the U.S. Public Health Service in Washington. The people I worked for were very nice and I grew to like them.

One day, a man had a heart attack at around 5 PM, on the sidewalk outside the Public Health Service. He was taken inside to the nurse’s room, where he was asked if he was a government employee. If he were, he would have been eligible to be taken to a medical facility there. Unfortunately, he was not, so a phone call was made to a local hospital to send an ambulance. By the time this ambulance made its way through miles of Washington rush-hour traffic, the man was dead.

He died waiting for a doctor, in a building full of doctors.

Nothing so dramatized for me the nature of a bureaucracy and its emphasis on procedures, rather than results.

4. The Conservative Vision Versus the Liberal Vision:

Liberal believe that the real problem with the world is that the institutions are wrong. If the institutions were right; there’s nothing in human nature that would cause us to be unhappy, it’s the fact that we have the wrong institutions.”

Conservatives believe man is flawed from day one. There are no solutions; there are only tradeoffs. Whatever you do to deal with one of man’s flaws, it creates another problem. But that you try to get the best tradeoff you can get. And that’s all you can hope for.

5.  Three Questions to Destroy Liberal Arguments:

There a three questions that I think would destroy most of the arguments on the left. The first is, “Compared to what?” The second is, “At what cost?” And the third is, “What hard evidence do you have?”

6. The Age of Complaining Classes: The Thomas Sowell Reader:

This is the age of the complaining classes, whether they are lawyers, community activists, radical feminists, race hustlers or other squeaking wheels looking for oil. … No society ever thrived because it had a large and growing class of parasites living off those who produce.

media2-lies7. Diversity:

The next time some academics tell you how important diversity is, ask how many Republicans there are in their sociology department.

8. Taxes:

Our tax system penalizes those who are producing wealth in order to subsidize those who are only consuming it.

9. Fake News:

The current hysteria over “fake news” — including hysteria by people who have done more than their own fair share of faking news — shows the continuing efforts of the political left to stifle free speech in the country at large, as they already have on academic campuses.

  1. Immigration Reform:

Immigration laws are the only laws that are discussed in terms of how to help people who break them. One of the big problems that those who are pushing “comprehensive immigration reform” want solved is how to help people who came here illegally and are now “living in the shadows” as a result.

What about embezzlers or burglars who are “living in the shadows” in fear that someone will discover their crimes? Why not “reform” the laws against embezzlement or burglary so that such people can also come out of the shadows?

11. Multiculturalism:

multi-culturalism-quoteWhat “multiculturalism” boils down to is that you can praise any culture in the world except Western culture – and you cannot blame any culture in the world except Western culture.

Eleven Great Thomas Sowell Quotes

Constitution Series 18: Rights from God protected by Constitution, Records of History

Constitution Series 18:

Rights from God protected by Constitution, Records of History

Founding Principles of America:

28 Great Ideas that changed the world

5000leapThe practical application of this book review of Skousen educated wisdom is to leverage “We, The People’s” knowledge to easily expose ignorance, anarchy and tyranny, and hold the government accountable.

From The 5,000 Year Leap—A Miracle that Changed the World

By W. Cleon Skousen

US Constitution Series 18

Our Unalienable Rights from God are Best Protected by Written Records of History

keyoldThey had had many wars and serious contentions, and had fallen by the sword from time to time; and their language had become corrupted; and they had brought no records with them; and they denied the being of their Creator. ~Omni 1:17

No written records, no history

The one weakness of the Anglo-Saxon common law was that it was unwritten. Since its principles were known among the whole people, they seemed indifferent to the necessity of writing them down.

“Until the Anglo-Saxon conversion to Christianity it was unwritten and like all customary law was considered immutable. “ (Lovell, English Constitutional and Legal History, 7)

magna-cartaHowever, the Norman Conquest taught the Anglo-Saxons in England a bitter lesson. Many of their most treasured rights disappeared in a flood of blood and vindictive oppression. In fact, these rights were retained very slowly over a period of centuries and gradually they were written down. In A.D. 1215, during a national crisis, the sword was virtually put to the throat of King John in order to compel him to sign the Magna Charta, setting forth the traditional rights of freemen.

During that same century the “Model Parliament” came into being, which compelled the King to acknowledge the principle of no taxation without representation.

Through the centuries, the British have tried to manage their political affairs with no written constitution and have merely relied upon these fragmentary statures as a constitutional reference source. These proved helpful to the American Founders, but they felt that the structure of government should be codified in a more permanent, comprehensive form.

It will be appreciated, therefore, that the tradition of written constitutions in modern times is not of English origin but is entirely American, both in principle and practice.

Mayflower-compact-hero2-ABeginnings of a Written Constitution in America

The first written charter in America was in 1620, when the Mayflower Compact came into being. Later the charter concept evolved into a more comprehensive type of constitution when Thomas Hooker and his associates adopted the Fundamental Orders of Connecticut in 1639. It is interesting that the Connecticut charter makes no reference to the Crown or the British Government as the source of its authority. (Skousen, 217-218)

American Constitution Represents Wisdom of Many

signers3Montesquieu pointed out that when it comes to legislating (which includes the setting up of constitutions), the writing of the statute or charter is “oftentimes better regulated by many than by a single person.” In harmony with this same sentiment, the American Founding Fathers considered it wise to “legislate” their constitution by filtering it through the wisdom and experiences of many delegates assembled in a convention rather than leaving it to the genius of some individual.

It is always difficult to operate through a committee, a group, or a convention as the Founding Fathers did. Nevertheless, the history of the convention demonstrates that the final product was far stronger than any individual could have written it. Time has also proven the tremendous advantage of having a completely written document for reference purposes rather than relying upon tradition and a few scattered statutes as the fundamental law of the land. (Skousen 220-221)

Why Young Adults need to know about Judeo-Christian Heritage and Freedom of Religion

NEXT—

Principle 19: Only Limited Powers should be delegated to Government; all others being Retained in the People

History Facts: World War 2 Heroes Remember D Day

History Facts:

World War 2  Heroes Remember D Day

The Heroes of D-Day in Their Own Words, 72 Years Later

John Hayward

Time will inevitably take the last heroes of D-Day from us, but a few remain, telling their stories to rapt audiences across the nation.

7th June 1944:  American assault troops and equipment landing on Omaha beach on the Northern coast of France, the smoke in the background is from naval gunfire supporting the attack.  (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images)
7th June 1944: American assault troops and equipment landing on Omaha beach on the Northern coast of France, the smoke in the background is from naval gunfire supporting the attack. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images)

Donald Rutter of the 82nd Airborne recalled having a decent red-eye flight from England to France, but then he jumped out of a perfectly good airplane, and his whole day went to hell.

He said a sniper’s bullet went over his shoulder to hit his lieutenant, and he wound up hiding from 20mm cannon fire in a barn.

“But I happened to survive it,” Rutter, now 94, told his local paper, the Reading Eagle. He said what happened next was “a long story.”

“I could go on and on. I’ll have to write a book,” he said.

The Reading Eagle cites historians who say that even with the surge of pop-culture interest in D-Day over the past generation, ranging from movies like Saving Private Ryan to video games that strive to recreate the experience of storming the beaches of Normandy, most people do not have an accurate impression of what the landing was really like. This makes the recollections of the remaining veterans an invaluable historical resource.

“We want them to have their stories known to others,” said Berks County Department of Veterans Affairs Executive Director Dale G. Derr. “I wish I could articulate what it means when a WW II vet sits down with you.”

That opportunity will only grow more scarce in the future, as the Reading Eagle estimates that just 855,000 World War II veterans remain in the U.S., and they are departing at a rate of 800 a day.

72 years ago, Frank McCalment of South Bend, Indiana was a 22-year-old Navy gunner, who woke up from a night on the deck of the heavy cruiser USS Augusta to see a B-17 bomber burning in the sky overhead.

“We saw a lot of young fellows going in (to shore) on landing craft. I felt sorry for them,” said McCalment, quoted by the South Bend Tribune.

He spent that endless day loading hundred-pound shells into the Augusta’s 5-inch guns, as they pounded German emplacements on the French coast. “We had superior air power. The sky was almost black with Allied airplanes,” he said. “The Germans were firing back. Thank the good Lord, they never hit us.”

A point made by both D-Day veterans and historians is that D-Day was the beginning of a long and difficult struggle, whose end was nowhere in sight on the day the invasion began. McCalment recalled the Augusta providing fire support for General George Patton himself a few weeks later, when Patton needed help with some German tanks.

MemorialDay191-year-old Robert Levine of Teaneck, New Jersey was 19 when he came ashore on Utah Beach. On the far side of Hill 122, retreating Germans ambushed his unit, filled his leg with shrapnel from a grenade, and took him prisoner. Then he got hit by shrapnel from the very same American mortar shells he had been delivering to forward positions at the time of his capture.

He woke up on the kitchen table of a French farmhouse that had been pressed into service as a German field hospital.

“For you, the war is over,” said a German military doctor, as he prepared to amputate Levine’s leg. Then the doctor noticed the letter “H” stamped on the prisoner’s dog tags… identifying him as Hebrew.

“I had just turned 19, and I thought that was the end for me. I was never going to see my 20th birthday, I knew it,” he recalled.

To his astonishment, he woke up in an improvised recovery room, without his injured leg – or his dog tags. The German doctor hid the tags to conceal Levine’s identity. “That’s the second way he saved my life,” Levine said.

It took him forty years, but he eventually tracked down the doctor, after leaving his contact information at the D-Day museum in Les Perrieres, and taking up a correspondence with a former German prisoner of war whose first letter began, “Dear Robert: Do you mind a former enemy calling you ‘Dear?’”

With his new friend’s help, Levine finally found the home of the man who saved him, only to learn he had already passed away. He presented the doctor’s widow with the hand-written card he found in place of his dog tags when he woke up in that recovery room, containing vital medical information about his injuries.

93-year-old Ray Stewart of Gastonia, N.C. was a 20-year-old gunner on a tank whose crew called themselves “Hell on Wheels.” He remembered rolling into action with the 2nd Armored Division three days after the invasion began, as part of a replacement force.

“I was just like everybody else on D-Day. We didn’t know what was going on,” said Stewart, making a point that could be difficult for young people raised in the Information Age to appreciate. Frank McCalment, the USS Augusta’s gunner, noted that the crew of his ship learned something big was in the wind because the King of England came aboard for a tour, followed soon afterward by Lt. General Omar Bradley.

90-year-old Louis Palermo was part of the second wave of the Omaha Beach assault, after watching the first wave get torn to shreds by heavy German artillery and machine gun fire. He piled out of a Higgins boat, into a storm of bullets and bombs… and then spent 10 minutes wading ashore. This was followed by an hour dug into the bloody sand, while 2,500 men died around him.

“A lot of my comrades got killed. The Germans were throwing everything at us,” he recalled.

Palermo spent the next six months living in foxholes, took a shrapnel hit during the Battle of the Bulge, and was at one point declared MIA after he got separated from his unit for a week. Fortunately, his letter of reassurance that he was still alive reached his mother right after the letter from the Army that said he had been lost.

Amazingly, while he was telling his story to the LI Herald last week, Palermo’s wife of nearly sixty years, Norma, walked into the room and declared, “This is the most I’ve ever heard about it.”

“I just hope we don’t get into another war. I don’t want to see the younger generations go into combat anymore,” said Palermo.

memorial-day2arlingtonContrary to the modern fashion, he thought businesses should be shut down on Memorial Day, to observe a national moment of silence. “The heroes are the guys that got killed over there, that are buried. They sacrificed their lives,” he said.

John Provini of Connecticut recalled seeing three ships behind him taking hits, one of them blown out of the water, during landing operations… and that was two months before D-Day, when his group was training to prepare for the attack, and came under fire from the Germans.

He was nevertheless among the first troops to hit the beaches when Operation Overlord went down. “When you look up, it was sunny day, you couldn’t see the sun because of all the planes,” the Connecticut veteran told CTStyle in a Memorial Day interview.

Provini said he handles the weight of his D-Day memories by remembering, “The good outweighs the bad, and call it a day.”

90-year-old Don Carragher of St. Augustine joined the Navy at 17, hoping to serve on a battleship, but since he was color-blind, he was assigned to the Seabees. He spent six months building barges for the invasion, then volunteered for duty as a signalman during the invasion. His post gave him an incomparable view of the battle.

“The guns from our destroyers and cruisers was unbelievable, and the German bombs, the 88 mm, they were coming over like crazy. You didn’t have time to figure out what was going on. The noise was deafening. But I saw it. I saw things no 18-year-old should see,” he told the St. Augustine Record. “You see dead bodies and there’s nothing funny about it, there’s nothing clever about it, there’s nothing nice about it. It’s unbelievable what men can do to each other.”

Given a chance to come ashore and stretch his legs on the day after D-Day, Carragher said he could only handle ten minutes on the beach, because he was “a bundle of nerves” from thinking about all the men who had died there.

Charles Norman Shay, who journeyed to Normandy this year to deliver a speech despite being almost 92 years old, was a medic with the 1st U.S. Infantry Division. D-Day was his first day in combat.

“The seas were red with the blood of men who were wounded or sacrificed their lives,” he says. “It was very devastating. I had to cleanse my soul – well, not cleanse my soul, but I had to think a lot about it and push what I was experiencing out of my mind so I could function the way I was trained to function,” Shay, a Penobscot Indian, recalled to Indian Country Today.

Half his company, and seven out of nine officers, were dead or wounded by noon on June 6th, 1944. He found his friend Edward Morocewitz dying on the beach from a stomach wound. “I could not even bandage him properly,” he said. “I gave him a shot of morphine, and, well, we said goodbye to each other forever, because he died.”

He began returning to Normandy every year in 2007, to “take up contact” with the fallen, and “let them know they’re not forgotten,” with a stop at Morocewitz’s grave on every visit.

“This was one of the biggest operations in military history. And it was a success. And, well, I was perhaps happy and sad to be a part of it,” said Shay.

Memorial Day: Museum Honors War Heroes

National WWII museum: WE OWE THEM

vetsweowethemHe blinked his eyes rapidly and tears began to moisten his 90-year-old cheeks as memories of war flooded his mind.

“I guess everybody has those feelings,” World War II veteran Harry Robinson told AFA Journal about his recent trip to the National World War II Museum in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Robinson grew up on a farm in Clay County, Mississippi, and voluntarily joined the U.S. Marine Corps when he was 18 years old. After his enlistment, he rode a train from Jackson, Mississippi, to San Diego, California, and then spent two-and-one-half years overseas. Robinson served as a cook and a baker, so he didn’t experience actual combat other than an invasion of Guam that included his platoon. And he was at home on leave when the bomb was dropped on Hiroshima.

But the war was real; Robinson was a part of it and forever impacted by it.

“I have forgiven, but I haven’t forgotten,” Robinson said. His memories became reality again as he and his family toured the museum.

“I’m so thankful I came back [from war] without a bruise or anything,” he said while fighting back tears. “So many people lost their lives over there. I hope that visitors to the museum recognize the fact that so many gave their lives.”

The National World War II Museum opened its doors June 6, 2000, after its founder, the late  historian Steven Ambrose, had the idea to build it in memory of Andrew Jackson Higgins. Higgins built the boats that were used as landing craft by the United States to win WWII. Higgins Shipyard in New Orleans built some 20,000 of those boats, thus the reason the museum is located in the Big Easy.

“The museum tells the story of the American experience in the war that changed the world,” William M. “Bill” Detweiler, J.D., told AFA Journal. “It tells why it was fought, how it was won, and what it means today so that all generations will understand the price of freedom and be inspired by what they learn. That’s our mission statement.”

Detweiler is the museum’s consultant for military and veterans affairs.

“The museum is a passion for me,” Detweiler said. He has been with the museum since before there was a museum, dating back to his service as national commander of the American Legion (1994-95). During that time he was in a dispute with the Smithsonian Institute over the display of the Enola Gay, a Boeing B-29 Superfortress WWII bomber that became the first aircraft to drop an atomic bomb.

“I got involved on behalf of the American Legion and spent my whole year as national commander trying to defend the courage and honor of the men and women of the war years and to defend President Truman’s decision to drop the bombs to bring the war to a conclusion,” Detweiler explained.

Because of his work, he was elected to the board of the museum a few years later.

Ceremonies
Presently, Detweiler handles all of the outreach and relations dealing with the military on both the local and national levels. This involves special ceremonies presented by the museum as well as assisting with special functions initiated by branches of the military.

“We host major ceremonies on patriotic holidays like Armed Forces Day, Memorial Day, Veterans Day, and the Fourth of July,” Detweiler said.

Plans are still being finalized for this year’s Memorial Day celebration, but in years past it has consisted of a speaker, music by the museum’s Navy band and Marine Corps band, and a POW/MIA ceremony provided by a Jr. ROTC cadet program from one of the local high schools.

“It’s a very elaborate ceremony that’s put on by these high school students in memory of those who have paid the supreme sacrifice and have been lost in war,” Detweiler explained. The Memorial Day program is scheduled to begin at 10:30 a.m. (CT) and is open to the public.

On June 6, the museum is planning a major observance to mark the 70th anniversary of the invasion of Normandy. There is a related event planned almost every day during the week of June 1-8.

Education
The museum reaches out not only to veterans and their loved ones but also to families, schools, students and the community. The purpose of the museum is to help people understand WWII, how it influences the world today and what future generations can learn from it.

“In order to keep young people interested, the exhibits have to be such that they appeal to younger people and that they raise their interests and keep their attention,” Detweiler said.

That’s why the museum always has an ongoing project and is constantly incorporating advanced technology to make the museum relevant both now and in the future.

One of the most powerful aspects of the museum, according to Detweiler, is a feature presentation titled Beyond All Boundaries that runs daily on the hour. It’s a 4-D film produced by actor Tom Hanks that tells the story of the war in less than an hour.

The museum also houses thousands of oral histories, statements from WWII veterans and members of the home front. One of the museum pavilions has been remodeled to look like a train station from the 1940s. Visitors purchase tickets and board a train car that uses technology to take them on a computerized ride through the countryside in order to experience life during the era.

At the museum’s Stage Door Canteen, bands play, the Victory Belles sing, and swing dance lessons are taught on occasion. In the restoration facility, visitors can watch as men and women work to restore a WWII patrol boat similar to the one on which President John F. Kennedy served.

The United States Freedom Pavilion, which opened earlier this year, houses five vintage WWII planes. The planes hang 90 feet in the air, and catwalks allow visitors to walk right up to the planes and look inside them.

There are various hands-on educational projects, events and exhibits like the Classroom Victory Garden Project that teaches elementary students the importance of community during a time of war. The museum holds summer camps for children as well as various activities for families including Night at the Museum, when a child and parent stay in the museum overnight, watch movies and make crafts.

“We’re an educational facility,” Detweiler explained. “We are not a museum of guns and bullets. We’re not about gore. No veteran who has ever seen combat wants to see war or combat again.

“We want families to realize the sacrifices and what it took, what these men and women did, in order to earn and protect the freedoms that we continue to enjoy today,” he said. “We really encourage families who still have a living World War II vet or family member who was working on the home front during World War II to come on in and take a look. It’s worth the visit. It really is.”

– See more at: http://www.afajournal.org/archives/2010-present/2014/may/features/national-wwii-museum-reminds-us-%E2%80%A6-we-owe-them.aspx#sthash.8QMGv7Rg.dpuf

 

For more information:
National World War II Museum
504-528-1944
info@nationalww2museum.org – See more at: http://www.afajournal.org/archives/2010-present/2014/may/features/national-wwii-museum-reminds-us-%E2%80%A6-we-owe-them.aspx#sthash.8QMGv7Rg.dpuf

Memorial Day: Remembering World War 2 Heroes

Memorial Day: Remembering World War 2 Heroes

This World War II Soldier’s Story Reminds Us of Why Memorial Day Matters

James Carafano

memorial-day2arlingtonIf any day is more than just a day, then Memorial Day is it.

Sometimes remembering just one soldier reminds us why.

His name was Lawrence Gordon. He grew-up on a hard-scrabble farm in Canada. After Pearl Harbor, he decided to join the American Army. The Americans had better “kit.”

The Army sent Gordon into the center of the storm, as the allies battled from the beaches of Normandy breaking through the German defenses and then racing to encircle the enemy as it withdrew from France.

Gordon was on the sharp edge of the bayonet. His cavalry unit, in thinly skinned armored vehicles, was dispatched way to the front or the flanks to find the enemy before the more heavily armored columns were called up to engage. Sometimes “finding” the enemy started with a wild exchange of gunfire or the unexpected burst of mortar rounds. Patrols could go from tense silence to vicious firefights in seconds. Gordon’s letters home to the family and his girl kept up their spirits with assurances he was safe and surrounded by dependable comrades and delivered a travelogue of his little unit’s march across France.

One day the letters stopped.

The family received a partially burned wallet. They knew it was his. The picture of his girl was singed but still recognizable. But other than a few personal effects, there was no explanation of what had happened to Lawrence Gordon—and no body. He was missing in action—and would remain so for almost 70 years.

A documentary, “Honoring a Commitment,” by a young filmmaker named Jeb Henry, tells the extraordinary story of how his loved ones found Private Gordon and brought him home.

The new film, recently screened at The Heritage Foundation in partnership with National Review, is part detective story and part love story, a journey of a family’s determined unrelenting effort to find and honor a brave man.

Remembering Private Gordon is important for all of us. Any remembrance of war that doesn’t include the telling of individual stories lessens the purpose of the day–and why it is important that we remember.

Sometimes the enormity of war overwhelms the truth that all great struggles are just the sum of individual stories. Each is more than just the story of one soldier’s service and sacrifice. Their service ripples across their families, friends and their communities. Memorial Day reminds us it is the noble sacrifice of many that makes us who we are.

Every soldier’s story of World War II is worth telling. Every story of every soldier in every war has value. Every generation of American soldiers is the greatest generation. What is most extraordinary about the extraordinary story of Private Gordon and his extraordinary family is that it is singularly representative of what the fight for freedom and the eternal struggle for the preservation of liberty really means.

MemorialDay1They Stood For Something and We Owe Them Something’: Reagan’s 1986 Memorial Day Speech

Remembering Those Who Never Came Home

Nursing Hero: Florence Nightingale

Nursing Hero:

Florence Nightingale

Dinner Topics for Tuesday

keyThe Times: She is a ‘ministering angel’ without any exaggeration in these hospitals, and as her slender form glides quietly along each corridor, every poor fellow’s face softens with gratitude at the sight of her. When all the medical officers have retired for the night and silence and darkness have settled down upon those miles of prostrate sick, she may be observed alone, with a little lamp in her hand, making her solitary rounds.[9]

From wikipedia

220px-Florence_NightingaleFlorence Nightingale OM, RRC 12 May 1820 – 13 August 1910) was a celebrated English nurse, writer and statistician. She came to prominence for her pioneering work in nursing during the Crimean War, where she tended to wounded soldiers. She was dubbed “The Lady with the Lamp” after her habit of making rounds at night. An Anglican, Nightingale believed that God had called her to be a nurse.

Nightingale laid the foundation of professional nursing with the establishment, in 1860, of her nursing school at St Thomas’ Hospital in London, the first secular nursing school in the world, now part of King’s College London. The Nightingale Pledge taken by new nurses was named in her honour, and the annual International Nurses Day is celebrated around the world on her birthday.

Florence Nightingale was born into a rich, upper-class, well-connected British family at the Villa Colombaia,[1] near the Porta Romana at Bellosguardo in Florence, Italy, and was named after the city of her birth. Florence’s older sister Frances Parthenope had similarly been named after her place of birth, Parthenopolis, a Greek settlement now part of the city of Naples.

Her parents were William Edward Nightingale, born William Edward Shore (1794-1874) and Frances (“Fanny”) Nightingale née Smith (1789-1880). William’s mother Mary née Evans was the niece of one Peter Nightingale, under the terms of whose will William inherited his estate Lea Hurst in Derbyshire, and assumed the name and arms of Nightingale. Fanny’s father (Florence’s maternal grandfather) was the abolitionist and Unitarian William Smith. (For family trees, see here.)

Inspired by what she took as a call from God in February 1837 while at Embley Park, Florence announced her decision to enter nursing in 1844, despite the intense anger and distress of her mother and sister. In this, she rebelled against the expected role for a woman of her status, which was to become a wife and mother. Nightingale worked hard to educate herself in the art and science of nursing, in spite of opposition from her family and the restrictive societal code for affluent young English women. Nightingale was courted by politician and poet Richard Monckton Milnes, 1st Baron Houghton, but she rejected him, convinced that marriage would interfere with her ability to follow her calling to nursing.

In Rome in 1847, she met Sidney Herbert, a brilliant politician who had been Secretary at War (1845-1846), a position he would hold again during the Crimean War. Herbert was on his honeymoon; he and Nightingale became lifelong close friends. Herbert and his wife were instrumental in facilitating Nightingale’s nursing work in the Crimea, and she became a key adviser to him in his political career, though she was accused by some of having hastened Herbert’s death from Bright’s Disease in 1861 because of the pressure her programme of reform placed on him.

Nightingale also much later had strong relations with Benjamin Jowett, who may have wanted to marry her.

Nightingale continued her travels (now with Charles and Selina Bracebridge) as far as Greece and Egypt. Her writings on Egypt in particular are testimony to her learning, literary skill and philosophy of life. Sailing up the Nile as far as Abu Simbel in January 1850, she wrote “I don’t think I ever saw anything which affected me much more than this.” And, considering the temple: “Sublime in the highest style of intellectual beauty, intellect without effort, without suffering… not a feature is correct – but the whole effect is more expressive of spiritual grandeur than anything I could have imagined. It makes the impression upon one that thousands of voices do, uniting in one unanimous simultaneous feeling of enthusiasm or emotion, which is said to overcome the strongest man.”

At Thebes she wrote of being “called to God” while a week later near Cairo she wrote in her diary (as distinct from her far longer letters that her elder sister Parthenope was to print after her return): “God called me in the morning and asked me would I do good for him alone without reputation.”[2] Later in 1850, she visited the Lutheran religious community at Kaiserswerth-am-Rhein in Germany, where she observed Pastor Theodor Fliedner and the deaconesses working for the sick and the deprived. She regarded the experience as a turning point in her life, and issued her findings anonymously in 1851; The Institution of Kaiserswerth on the Rhine, for the Practical Training of Deaconesses, etc. was her first published work;[3] she also received four months of medical training at the institute which formed the basis for her later care.

On 22 August 1853, Nightingale took the post of superintendent at the Institute for the Care of Sick Gentlewomen in Upper Harley Street, London, a position she held until October 1854.[4] Her father had given her an annual income of £500 (roughly £40,000/US$65,000 in present terms), which allowed her to live comfortably and to pursue her career.

Florence Nightingale’s most famous contribution came during the Crimean War, which became her central focus when reports began to filter back to Britain about the horrific conditions for the wounded. On 21 October 1854, she and a staff of 38 women volunteer nurses, trained by Nightingale and including her aunt Mai Smith,[5] were sent (under the authorisation of Sidney Herbert) to the Ottoman Empire, about 295 nautical miles (546 km; 339 mi) across the Black Sea from Balaklava in the Crimea, where the main British camp was based.

Nightingale arrived early in November 1854 at Selimiye Barracks in Scutari (modern-day Üsküdar in Istanbul). She and her nurses found wounded soldiers being badly cared for by overworked medical staff in the face of official indifference. Medicines were in short supply, hygiene was being neglected, and mass infections were common, many of them fatal. There was no equipment to process food for the patients.

After Nightingale sent a plea to The Times for the government to produce a solution to the poor condition of the facilities, the British Government commissioned Isambard Kingdom Brunel to design a prefabricated hospital, which could be built in England and shipped to the Dardanelles. The result was Renkioi Hospital, a civilian facility which under the management of Dr Edmund Alexander Parkes had a death rate less than 1/10th that of Scutari.[6]

At the beginning of the 20th century, it was asserted that Nightingale reduced the death rate from 42% to 2% either by making improvements in hygiene herself or by calling for the Sanitary Commission. The 1911 first edition of the Dictionary of National Biography made this claim, but the second edition in 2001 did not. However, death rates did not drop: they began to rise. The death count was the highest of all hospitals in the region. During her first winter at Scutari, 4,077 soldiers died there. Ten times more soldiers died from illnesses such as typhus, typhoid, cholera and dysentery than from battle wounds. Conditions at the temporary barracks hospital were so fatal to the patients because of overcrowding and the hospital’s defective sewers and lack of ventilation. A Sanitary Commission had to be sent out by the British government to Scutari in March 1855, almost six months after Florence Nightingale had arrived, and effected flushing out the sewers and improvements to ventilation.[7] Death rates were sharply reduced. During the war she did not recognise hygiene as the predominant cause of death, and she never claimed credit for helping to reduce the death rate.[8]

Nightingale continued believing the death rates were due to poor nutrition and supplies and overworking of the soldiers. It was not until after she returned to Britain and began collecting evidence before the Royal Commission on the Health of the Army that she came to believe that most of the soldiers at the hospital were killed by poor living conditions. This experience influenced her later career, when she advocated sanitary living conditions as of great importance. Consequently, she reduced deaths in the army during peacetime and turned attention to the sanitary design of hospitals.

The Lady with the Lamp

During the Crimean war, Florence Nightingale gained the nickname “The Lady with the Lamp”, deriving from a phrase in a report in The Times:

She is a ‘ministering angel’ without any exaggeration in these hospitals, and as her slender form glides quietly along each corridor, every poor fellow’s face softens with gratitude at the sight of her. When all the medical officers have retired for the night and silence and darkness have settled down upon those miles of prostrate sick, she may be observed alone, with a little lamp in her hand, making her solitary rounds.[9]

The phrase was further popularised by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow‘s 1857 poem “Santa Filomena”:[10]

Lo! in that house of misery
A lady with a lamp I see
Pass through the glimmering gloom,
And flit from room to room.

Florence Nightingale, continued in Wikipedia

Hayek Quotes: Liberty, Socialism, and Economy

Dinner Topics for Monday

Quotes by Friedrich Hayek

keyIf we wish to preserve a free society, it is essential that we recognize that the desirability of a particular object is not sufficient justification for the use of coercion. ~Friedrich August von Hayek

Even the striving for equality by means of a directed economy can result only in an officially enforced inequality – an authoritarian determination of the status of each individual in the new hierarchical order. ~Friedrich August von Hayek

We must face the fact that the preservation of individual freedom is incompatible with a full satisfaction of our views of distributive justice. ~Friedrich August von Hayek

socialjusticeThe mirage of social justice

F. A. Hayek made many valuable contributions to the field of economics as well as to the disciplines of philosophy and politics. This volume represents the second of Hayek’s comprehensive three-part study of the relations between law and liberty. … Google Books

hayekbooksocialismThe Fatal Conceit

Book by Friedrich Hayek

The Fatal Conceit: The Errors of Socialism is a non-fiction book written by the economist and political philosopher Friedrich Hayek and edited by William Warren Bartley. Wikipedia

Published: 1988Author: Friedrich Hayek

Friedrich Hayek

Friedrich August Hayek ( 8 May 1899 – 23 March 1992), born in Austria-Hungary as Friedrich August von Hayek and frequently known as F. A. Hayek, was an Austrian, later turned British,[1] economist and philosopher best known for his defense of classical liberalism. In 1974, Hayek shared the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences (with Gunnar Myrdal) for his “pioneering work in the theory of money and economic fluctuations and … penetrating analysis of the interdependence of economic, social and institutional phenomena”.[2]

Hayek is an economist[3] and major political thinker of the twentieth century.[4] Hayek’s account of how changing prices communicate information which enables individuals to coordinate their plans is widely regarded as an important achievement in economics.[5] He also contributed to the fields of systems thinking, jurisprudence, neuroscience, and the history of ideas.[6]

Hayek served in World War I and said that his experience in the war and his desire to help avoid the mistakes that had led to the war led him to his career. Hayek lived in Austria, Great Britain, the United States and Germany, and became a British subject in 1938. He spent most of his academic life at the London School of Economics (LSE), the University of Chicago, and the University of Freiburg.

In 1984, he was appointed as a member of the Order of the Companions of Honour by Queen Elizabeth II on the advice of Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher for his “services to the study of economics”.[7] He was the first recipient of the Hanns Martin Schleyer Prize in 1984.[8] He also received the US Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1991 from president George H. W. Bush.[9] In 2011, his article The Use of Knowledge in Society was selected as one of the top 20 articles published in the American Economic Review during its first 100 years.[10]

More about Hayek from Wikipedia

The Hayek Center

US Constitution Series 17: Checks and Balances in the Constitution Prevent Abuse of Power

 Checks and Balances in the Constitution Prevent Abuse of Power

From The 5,000 Year Leap—A Miracle that Changed the World

By W. Cleon Skousen

A System of Checks and Balances Should Be Adopted to Prevent the Abuse of Power

Failure to use Checks and Balances effectively Causing Problems Today

media cover up swampJust how difficult this task turned out to be is demonstrated in a number of problems which have arisen in our own day. The failure to use the checks and balances effectively has allowed the judiciary to create new laws (called judicial legislation) by pretending to be merely interpreting the old ones. Failure to use the checks and balances has also allowed the President to make thousands of new laws, instead of Congress, by issuing executive orders. It has allowed the federal government to invade the reserved rights of the states on a massive scale. It has allowed the legislature to impose taxes on the people never contemplated by the Founders of the Constitution. (Skousen, 207-208)

Checks and Balances in the Constitution

A number of procedures were tried in various states to protect the will of the people, but they were montesquieumostly ineffective. The American Founding Fathers were impressed by the concept of checks and balances set forth by Charles Montesquieu. They eventually achieved a system of checks and balances far more complex than those envisioned by Montesquieu. These included the following provisions:

  1. The House of Representatives serves as a check on the Senate since no statute can become law without the approval of the House.
  2. At the same time the Senate (representing the legislatures of the states before the 17th Amendment) serves as a check on the House of Representatives since no statute can become law without its approval.
  3. A President can restrain both the House and the Senate by using his veto to send back any bill not meeting with his approval.
  4. The Congress has, on the other hand, a check on the President by being able to pass a bill over the President’s veto with a two-thirds majority of each house.
  5. The legislature also has a further check on the President through its power of discrimination in appropriating funds for the operation of the executive branch.
  6. The President must have the approval of the Senate in filling important offices of the executive branch.
  7. The President must also have the approval of the Senate before any treaties with foreign nations can go into effect.
  8. The Congress has the authority to conduct investigations of the executive branch to determine whether or not funds are being properly expended and the laws enforced.
  9. constitutionThe President has a certain amount of political influence on the legislature by letting it be known that he will not support the reelection of those who oppose his program.
  10. The executive branch also has a further check on the Congress by using its discretionary powers in establishing military bases, building dams, improving navigable rivers, and building interstate highways so as to favor those areas from which the President feels he is getting support by their representatives.
  11. The judiciary has a check on the legislature through its authority to review all laws and determine their constitutionality.
  12. The Congress, on the other hand, has a restraining power over the judiciary by having the constitutional authority to restrict the extent of its jurisdiction.
  13. The Congress also has the power to impeach any of the judges who are guilty of treason, high crimes, or misdemeanors.
  14. The President also has a check on the judiciary by having the power to nominate new judges subject to the approval of the Senate.
  15. The Congress has further restraining power over the judiciary by having control of appropriations for the operation of the federal court system.
  16. The Congress is able to initiate amendments to the Constitution which, if approved by three-fourths of the states, could seriously affect the operation of both the executive and judicial branches.
  17. The Congress, by joint resolution, can terminate certain powers granted to the President (such as war powers) without his consent.
  18. The people have a check on their Congressmen every two years; on their President every four years; and on their Senators every six years. (Skousen, 211-213)

George Washington on the Importance of Preserving the Founders’ Checks and Balances System

George WashingtonThe spirit of encroachment tends to consolidate the powers of all the departments in one and thus to create, whatever the form of government, a real despotism. A just estimate of that love of power and proneness to abuse it which predominates in the human heart is sufficient to satisfy us of the truth of this position.

The necessity of reciprocal checks in the exercise of political power, by dividing and distributing it into different depositories and constituting each the guardian of the public weal against invasions by the others, has been evinced by experiments ancient and modern, some of them in our country and under our own eyes.

To preserve them must be as necessary as to institute them.

If, in the opinion of the people, the distribution or modification of the constitutional powers be in any particular wrong, let it be corrected by an amendment in the way which the Constitution designates. But let there be no change by usurpation; for though this, in one instance, may be the instrument of good, it is the customary weapon by which free governments are destroyed.

The Founders’ Device for “Peaceful” Self-Repair

signers3During nearly two centuries that the Constitution has been in operation, it has carried the nation through a series of traumatic crises. Not the least of these have been those occasions when some branch of government became arrogantly officious in the administration of its assigned task or flagrantly violated the restrictions which the Constitution placed upon it. As President Washington indicated, there is a tendency for some of this to occur continually, as is the case in our own day, but when it reaches a point of genuine crisis there is built-in Constitutional machinery to take care of it.

Other Countries lack Means of Peaceful Self-Repair

By way of contrast, we have scores of nations which claim to have copied the United States Constitution, but which failed to incorporate adequate checks and balances. In those countries, the only remedy, when elected presidents have suspended the constitution and used the army to stay in power, has been to resort to machine guns and bombs to oust the usurper. This occurs time after time. What the Founders wished to achieve in the Constitution of 1787 was machinery for the peaceful means of self-repair when the system went out of balance.

The Blessing of Domestic Tranquility

church-1Some of us have had to travel or live in nations during a time of turmoil and revolution. Even one such experience will usually convince the most skeptical activist that there is nothing to be gained and a great deal to be lost by resorting to violence to bring about political change. Once a constitution has been established and the machinery developed for remedy or repair by peaceful means, this is the most intelligent and satisfactory route to pursue. It requires more patience, but given time, the results are more certain.

To solve problems by peaceful means was the primary purpose of the United States Constitution.

(Skousen, 214-215)

NEXT: 18th Principle—The Unalienable Rights of the People are most likely to be Preserved if the Principles of Government are Set Forth in a Written Constitution

US Constitution Series 16: Our Government has 3 Parts—Law, President, and Courts

Judeo-Christian Worldview: Truth Matters

Judeo-Christian Worldview: 

Truth Matters

WHAT IS TRUTH?

 

truth-not-altered-simply

This question has echoed through the ages, since Pilate asked it of Jesus  Christ. This is a good question today for some who, sadly, are” ever learning, but never coming to a knowledge of the truth.”[1] We can only hope that at some point their prejudices may give way before the truth. Those seeking truth in the spacious, but specious,[2] towers of moral relativism will search in vain, because truth abides forever and ever, not subject to popular opinion, not based on trendy fads. Truth is absolute.

“Why are we here? Without truth, many wonder, “What is the purpose of life?” These are the ones  who sincerely seek the truth, only to be kept from it, for they do not know where to find it.

forgiveness4doveSo How Do We Find the Truth?

One ancient prophet said of his Creator: “He is a God of truth, and cannot lie.” Therefore, a logical place to start looking for truth is in the word of God. Saint John said “it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit [of Christ] is truth.”[3]

So, if we ask what is true, with a sincere heart, having faith in Christ, He will manifest the truth to us, by the power of the Holy Spirit. And by the power of the Holy Spirit, we may know the truth of all things.

But Why Does It Matter?

Not too long ago, Sean McDowell, Ph.D.,  a professor of Christian Apologetics,  was speaking at a youth event. Afterwards, a student came up to him and said, “You talked about truth a lot. What’s the big deal? Why is truth even important?”

                Why does truth matter? I would suggest to this young man: “At some point in time, in some real crisis, not an imagined one, perhaps you will even be faced with death.  In that defining moment, real truth will be important.”

naval-academy                Dr. Peter Marshall, a beloved chaplain in the United States Senate in the 1940s, was invited to speak at the Naval Academy. He was prepared to address his concern about the loose morals of the young people at that time. But the Spirit gave him a different message.  He felt strongly impressed to speak to them about death.

He told them about a young boy with a fatal illness. The boy Mother_Reading_to_Sonasked his mother what it was like to die.  She reminded him of those days when he had come in from play, so exhausted that he had fallen asleep on his mother’s bed, without even changing his clothes. When he awoke in the morning, he was in his own bed. Daddy had lovingly lifted him up in his strong arms and carried him to the comfort of his own bed, where he belonged.

Sailor w-Jesus by Warner Sallman
Sailor w-Jesus by Warner Sallman

That is what death is like, his mother continued. You fall asleep and when you wake up in the morning, you find that Heavenly Father has lifted you up and brought you home to the comfort of His loving arms, where you belong. And the little boy no longer feared death.

So the Spirit prompted Dr. Marshall to tell the truth about death to those hundreds of bright young sailors at the Naval Academy. Shortly thereafter, Pearl Harbor was bombed, and many of those sailors faced death in the devastating war that followed.

Yes, truth matters. We need it to give meaning to our lives.

Saint John reminds us that the Spirit “will guide you into all truth.”[4] And Jesus Christ is that way, that truth, and life eternal. At the end of the day, through Him we can return home, where we belong.

Why the Bible Matters

Culture War GamesExcerpt from Culture War Games, historical novel by CA Davidson

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[1] 2 Timothy 3:7

[2] specious—false, erroneous, unsound, wrong, deceptive, delusory, misleading

[3] 1 John 5:6

[4] St. John 16:13

US Constitution Series 16: Our Government has 3 Parts—Law, President, and Courts

Dinner Topics for Monday

US Constitution Series 16: Three Separate Branches of Government—Legislative, Executive, and Judicial

John Adams Pushes Separation-of-Powers Doctrine: Law, President, and Courts

3-branches-govtIn 1776, when it first became apparent that the American people would have to set up their own government, John Adams practically stood alone in advocating a government built on a separation of powers. Even before the Declaration of Independence he was advocating a new national government with three separate departments but found himself severely criticized for such a revolutionary idea. (Skousen, 198)

John Adams Studies the “Divine Science” of Good Government

It is interesting that John Adams should have been the first among the Founding Fathers to capture the vision of Montesquieu in setting up a self-repairing national government under the separation-of-powers doctrine. As we pointed out earlier, he looked upon politics as a “divine science,” and determined to devote his life to its study. (Skousen, 199)

John Adams Writes Separation of Powers into a the Massachusetts Constitution

[I]n spite of all the opposition John Adams encountered, he did succeed, almost single-handedly, in getting his state to adopt a constitution based on separation of powers. (Skousen, 201)

The Modern Apostle of the Divine Science of Good Government Unappreciated for a Century

johnadams2In later years, Adams was successful in getting his ideas incorporated in the U.S. Constitution, but he was never able to gain a genuine acceptance of himself. Even though he was elected the first Vice President of the United States and the second President, he very shortly disappeared into history with scarcely a ripple. A hundred years after the founding of the country, neither Washington nor Massachusetts had erected any kind of monument to John Adams. It was only as scholars began digging into the origins of American constitutionalism that John Adams suddenly loomed up into proper perspective. Even he suspected there would be very few who would remember what he had attempted to accomplish. (Skousen, 201)

A Constitution for 300 Million Freemen

Nevertheless his political precepts of the “divine science” of government caught on. Even Pennsylvania revised its constitution to include the separation of powers principle, and Benjamin Franklin, one of the last to be converted, finally acknowledged that the Constitution of the United States with its separation of powers was as perfect as man could be expected to produce. He urged all of the members of the Convention to sign it so that it would have unanimous support.

John Adams said it was his aspiration “to see rising in America an empire of liberty, and the prospect of two or three hundred millions of freemen, without one noble or one king among them.” (Koch, The American Enlightenment, p. 191)

NEXT—

Principle 17: A System of Checks and Balances to Prevent the Abuse of Power

US Constitution Series 15: Government, Liberty, and Business Economy