COMMON SENSE – 2017 (PART TWO) – The Burning Platform - by Jim Quinn
In Part One of this article I explored Thomas Paine’s critical role in the creation of our nation. His Common Sense pamphlets inspired the common people to uncommon acts of courage and heroic feats of valor; leading to the great experiment we call the United States of America. Paine, Franklin and the other Founding Fathers produced a republic, if we could keep it.
John Adams championed the new Constitution precisely because it would not create a democracy, as he knew a democracy “soon wastes, exhausts and murders itself.” Their herculean efforts, sacrifices, and bloodshed have been for naught as we allowed our republic to devolve into a democracy and ultimately into our current corporate fascist warfare/welfare surveillance state. Sadly, we were unable to keep the republic Franklin and his fellow revolutionaries gave us.
“From the errors of other nations, let us learn wisdom.” – Thomas Paine,Common Sense
Some might contend Paine’s Common Sense arguments against a despotic monarchy two and a half centuries ago, with an audience of two and a half million colonists, couldn’t be pertinent today in a divided nation of 325 million people. But when you examine the events, actions and catalysts inspiring Paine to pen Common Sense, you see the parallels with the events, decisions and facilitators of our current Crisis.
For more than a decade before the eruption of open hostilities, tensions had been building between colonists and the British authorities. An overbearing far flung British Empire began to pillage the colonies to pay for their corrupt kingdom by shaking them down through the Stamp Actof 1765, the Quartering Act of 1765, the Townshend Tariffs of 1767 and theTea Act of 1773.
This taxation without representation was met with passionate protest among many colonists, who resented their lack of representation in Parliament and demanded the same rights as other British subjects. These demands were met with arrogant indifference by the monarchy and a haughty parliament. Forcing colonists to feed and house the very soldiers who were being paid with their taxes to repress them was the ultimate insult.
Initially, the colonists just fumed at the domineering disrespect shown them by the British ruling establishment. The pillaging of their hard earned wealth by distant oppressors prompted the colonists to initially organize nonviolent resistance and embargoing British luxury goods. As anger against their authoritarian overseers boiled over, the British cracked down harder in their version of a colonial surveillance state. Colonial resistance eventually led to bloodshed in 1770, when British soldiers opened fire on a mob of colonists, killing five men in what became known as the Boston Massacre.
Parliament eventually backed down and repealed all of the duties except for one symbolic duty on tea. In December 1773 the Samuel Adams inspired Sons of Liberty, dressed as Mohawk Indians, boarded British ships and dumped 342 chests of tea into Boston Harbor. An outraged Parliament passed a series of measures known as the Intolerable or Coercive Acts, designed to reassert imperial authority in Massachusetts. In response, a group of colonial delegates (including George Washingtonof Virginia, John and Samuel Adams of Massachusetts, Patrick Henry of Virginia and John Jay of New York) met in Philadelphia in September 1774 to give voice to their grievances against the British crown.
This First Continental Congress did not mandate liberation from Britain, but it denounced taxation without representation, maintenance of the British army in the colonies without their consent, and issued a declaration of the rights due every citizen, including life, liberty, property, assembly and trial by jury. The Continental Congress voted to meet again in May 1775 to consider further action, but before it convened again Paul Revere made his fateful ride and local militiamen fired the first shots of the Revolutionary War at Lexington & Concord. These events set in motion Paine’s call to arms and the Declaration of Independence shortly thereafter.
The First American Revolution was the result of at least a decade of government overreach, excessive taxation, disregard for the rights of citizens, elitist arrogance of empire builders, and thuggish intimidation of colonists by the British military. The Americans, most of whom had been born on American soil, felt only vague allegiance to a monarchy across the seas imposing their iron fist of taxation and intimidation upon citizens and their means of livelihood.
There had been growing discontent for decades and the Boston Tea Party catalyst triggered a dramatic change in the colonial mood. The chain reactions happened rapidly thereafter and there was no turning back. Paine realized independence was the only true option and proceeded to inspire that result with his Common Sense pamphlets.
“Until an independence is declared the continent will feel itself like a man who continues putting off some unpleasant business from day to day, yet knows it must be done, hates to set about it, wishes it over, and is continually haunted with the thoughts of its necessity.” – Thomas Paine, Common Sense
With this potent image, Paine concluded Common Sense. This illustration captured Paine’s central point throughout the pamphlets that America must break away from Britain. The only question that remained was when the colonies were to become free. Paine believed the time for action was now rather than later, and exhorted his fellow Americans to rise to arms and vanquish their British oppressors.
The moment for transformation had come. It was time for the American people to take back their country from an overbearing, corrupt, evil establishment. The Crisis had reached its regeneracy with Paine’s Common Sense and Jefferson’s Declaration of Independence, two of the most important documents in America history.
Society is a Blessing/Government a Necessary Evil
“Society in every state is a blessing, but government even in its best state is but a necessary evil; in its worst state an intolerable one; for when we suffer, or are exposed to the same miseries by a government, which we might expect in a country without government, our calamity is heightened by reflecting that we furnish the means by which we suffer…” – Thomas Paine,Common Sense
If you are blind to the parallels with our current position in this Fourth Turning, you are either wallowing in willful ignorance or you are a functionary within the debased establishment. One of Paine’s main themes was society was a blessing while government was, at best, a necessary evil.
Paine believed in the power of the people. Society constitutes everything constructive people create through working together. The creation of businesses, inventions, scientific discoveries, art, and literature has never required government. Collaboration among individuals brings about positive outcomes and the advancement of society. People transact business, cooperate, follow societal norms, and live their lives on a daily basis with absolutely no intervention or oversight from an oppressive threatening government entity.
Human beings are fallible creatures with a weakness for the vices of greed, envy, lust, pride and a few others. The only true purpose of government is the protection of life, liberty and property. Paine presented government as an organization whose lone function was to inhibit the wickedness in man.
Government’s fundamental purpose is to provide security from foreign invaders and insure property rights are protected. The success of a government should be judged by the extent to which it fulfills these roles. Society is a force which promotes our happiness positively, while government is a coercive force, which at best has a neutral impact on our lives and at its worse, hampers our lives through coercion.
Paine believed the British monarchy had too much power over the lives of the colonists. The hereditary succession of the monarchy led to the elevation of asses to the throne while pretending he was a lion. King George III was just such an ass.
The purposeful complexity of the British system of government was designed to centralize power in the hands of the few, unlawfully and unjustifiably seizing control from the people. A government should be judged on whether it improves society or makes it worse. If the government does not represent the will of the people then it needs to be discarded or overthrown. The larger the government bureaucracy, the more disordered its decision making, and more likely corruption, tyranny, and taxation will burden the citizens.
Paine scoffed at the absurdity of branches of government checking each other. Once entrenched in power the aristocratic civil servants only served themselves and their financial benefactors. The happiness and well-being of the people was not their concern. Every government, even if its initial design had a noble purpose, devolves into a fetid swamp of control freaks, the tyrannical power hungry, egomaniacal sociopaths, and feckless apparatchiks. It becomes a bane and punisher of the people.
“Society is produced by our wants, and government by wickedness; the former promotes our happiness positively by uniting our affections, the latter negatively by restraining our vices. The one encourages intercourse, the other creates distinctions. The first is a patron, the last a punisher.” – Thomas Paine, Common Sense
Government of the People, By the People, For the People
“I offer nothing more than simple facts, plain arguments, and common sense.” – Thomas Paine
“We still find the greedy hand of government thrusting itself into every corner and crevice of industry and grasping at the spoil of the multitude. Invention is continually exercised to furnish new pretenses for revenue and taxation. It watches prosperity as its prey and permits none to escape without a tribute.” – Thomas Paine, Common Sense
Three generations have passed since Paine’s words inspired a revolution, but they ring as true today as they did during that fateful year of 1776. We have been ruled by an oppressive tyrannical establishment, bent on controlling and regulating every aspect of our lives, over-taxing hard working Americans to pay for its welfare/warfare surveillance state, indebting unborn generations with over $200 trillion of unfunded promises, enriching themselves and their Deep State benefactors, impoverishing the people through systematic inflation, globalizing their jobs to Asia, and treating hard working Americans with utter contempt.
The 2008 Federal Reserve/Wall Street created global financial collapse and subsequent banker bailout, while throwing senior citizens and the common man under the bus catalyzed this Fourth Turning. Main Street and flyover America did not participate in the faux economic recovery flogged by Obama, his minions, and their media mouthpieces.
Propaganda, fake economic data, and a vacuous divisive empty suit Deep State pawn president, running up the national debt by $9.3 trillion while enriching Wall Street, the military industrial complex, and the sickcare complex, did nothing to benefit average Americans. The result of this blatant disregard for the well-being of millions has backfired on the establishment.
The elevation of Donald Trump to the presidency has marked the regeneracy moment of this Fourth Turning. The mood of the country has taken a dramatic turn, with the normal people attempting to take back control of the government from malevolent Deep State financial, military, media, and corporate interests. This invisible government establishment is far more entrenched and malignant than the British monarchy confronted by Thomas Paine.
Just as the Loyalists supported the armed clampdown upon the liberty seeking revolutionaries by the redcoats, the deranged leftist useful idiots rioting in DC and in the liberal urban bastions around the country this past week are at war against normalcy, self-reliance, fiscal responsibility, the family values that built this nation, and the geographic will of 85% of the country.
Despite the wailing, gnashing of teeth, breaking of windows, setting limousines on fire, dressing as vaginas, calling for the assassination of Donald Trump, and overall infantile behavior of the losers in this recent election, the fact remains Trump won the popular vote in 30 states, accumulated an electoral landslide victory, and struck a chord with normal average family people who have been left behind by a government designed to benefit an autocratic few and buy off special interests for their votes.
These supposedly grass roots rallies representing all women were nothing more than another George Soros/Democrat Party funded propaganda effort to discredit Trump’s overwhelming victory. The dying left wing media mouthpieces for the establishment felt a tingle up their legs as they breathlessly reported on the prodigious hatred for a man who has been in office for one day.
Where were these patriots for the last eight years as their savior president droned wedding parties, blew up hospitals in the Middle East, and oversaw the unlawful collection of personal data by his rogue NSA spies? You didn’t hear any of the fake news pundits on CNN or MSNBC mention that 30 million deplorable women had voted for Trump and he crushed Hillary among white women with 53% of the vote.
The vitriolic, unhinged reaction to Trump’s victory by a fearful establishment, their fake news corporate media hacks, and the parasitical special interests dependent upon free shit, should be a wake-up call for the normal, hard-working, tax paying, self-reliant, liberty minded people in this country. The deeply rooted evil establishment and their feckless, toady, easily manipulated, useful idiot minions have declared war on Trump and the normals (aka deplorables) who voted for him.
After the battles of Lexington & Concord the British Empire declared war on the colonies. Many colonists still longed for reconciliation, but Thomas Paine and his fellow patriots knew that was impossible. This was going to be a fight to the death. If they lost, Paine and his brethren would be hanged.
Paine’s simple facts, plain words and common sense bolstered the morale of the American colonists, provided backbone to those on the fence, appealed to the English people’s consideration of the war with America, clarified the issues at stake in the war, and denounced the advocates of a negotiated peace. There was no time to be a summer soldier or sunshine patriot in 1776. We now stand on the precipice of another era of revolution. These are new times, but they will also try our souls. Words do matter. This really is a war and must be fought on all fronts.
The dumbing down of the American populace through the government run public education system results in tens of millions being intellectually incapable of resisting the never ending onslaught of Deep Statepropaganda through critical thought. Restoring the public’s ability to use common sense, sound reasoning, and good judgement is a virtual impossibility today, as a vast swath of the populace couldn’t name a Founding Father, why we celebrate July 4, or even voted in this past election. There were approximately 231 million eligible voters on November 8 and only 136 million voted. The apathy of the 95 million non-voters is a reflection of our iGadget addicted, debauched, feeble minded, bread and circuses distracted, confederacy of fools culture.
With a population of 325 million, versus the 2.5 million in Paine’s day, the question is how many patriots will be required to vanquish the Deep State sycophants and their useful idiot followers. It has been noted only 3% of colonists truly fought for independence during the American Revolution. One third remained loyal to the crown, one third passively supported independence and another third didn’t support either side. We have a similar dynamic today with about 30% supporting Trump’s revolution, 30% supporting the corrupt establishment, and 40% choosing to not participate. If the 3% still applies, it will only take 7 million out of Trump’s 63 million voters to successfully see the revolution through to its conclusion.
The venomous reaction from the fake news corporate media to Trump’s plain spoken, direct, and truthful, common sense inaugural address reveals his opponents true nature. They called the speech dark, gloomy, scary, and Hitler like. Trump derangement syndrome has clearly infected this insane clown posse of brainless talking heads and vacuous spokesmodels as they mouth the lines written by their establishment employers.
He directly confronted his establishment enemies as they sat in front of him by declaring war on their petty world of corruption, malfeasance, idolatry of power, world domination, globalization, and disregard for the lives of the common people. Just as Paine had declared in 1776, Trump declared this week – there will be no reconciliation, no negotiated peace, and no truce. His war on the establishment will be fought to the finish, with a clear winner and a clear loser. His address is the new Common Sense for common people looking to take back control of their government.
Trump immediately struck at the heart of the Washington DC beltway beast. The people out in the hinterlands, beyond the DC, NYC, LA, SF elitist enclaves, have been left behind and discarded while the connected few reaped unwarranted riches.
“For too long, a small group in our nation’s capital has reaped the rewards of government while the people have borne the cost. Washington flourished, but the people did not share in its wealth. Politicians prospered, but the jobs left and the factories closed. The establishment protected itself, but not the citizens of our country. Their victories have not been your victories. Their triumphs have not been your triumphs. And while they celebrated in our nation’s capital, there was little to celebrate for struggling families all across our land.”
Just as Paine delineated between the liberty seeking patriots and the despotic monarchical regime of King George III, Trump doesn’t play the standard political party games. This is a revolutionary movement. It’s the forgotten men and women versus the non-responsive imperious government.
“What truly matters is not which party controls our government, but whether our government is controlled by the people. The forgotten men and women of our country will be forgotten no longer. At the center of this movement is a crucial conviction that a nation exists to serve its citizens.”
Trump demolished the fake news storylines of economic advancement, low unemployment, reduced crime rates, and a thriving middle class. The media pundits were aghast when he told the truth about a nation in decay. After 50 years and $10 trillion of Great Society welfare programs, the poverty rate is near all-time highs; 43 million (up by 12 million since recession officially ended in 2009) people depend on food stamps to survive; over 100 million working age Americans aren’t working; real wages are lower than they were thirty years ago; and millions of family sustaining blue collar jobs have been off-shored to Asia in the name of globalization.
Our government run public schools are nothing more than social engineering indoctrination centers wasting $12,000 per student by having mediocre overpaid union teachers flog common core pabulum to disinterested students. They graduate functionally illiterate morons into society, further degrading the civic character of our nation, while in liberal run cities, like Chicago, murder rates skyrocket as black communities implode due to the breakdown of the family unit, welfare mentality, drugs, and placing no value on education. Trump’s assessment of this carnage is dead on.
“But for too many of our citizens, a different reality exists: mothers and children trapped in poverty in our inner cities; rusted out factories scattered like tombstones across the landscape of our nation; an education system flush with cash, but which leaves our young and beautiful students deprived of all knowledge; and the crime and the gangs and the drugs that have stolen too many lives and robbed our country of so much unrealized potential. This American carnage stops right here and stops right now.”
Trump scorched the globalization acolytes and neo-cons with his common sense appraisal of how we’ve wasted our wealth benefiting other countries and global corporations, while disregarding our own decaying infrastructure and families’ dependent upon decent paying jobs to make an honest living. The priorities of the establishment have enriched their corporate masters while destroying a once thriving middle class.
“We spent trillions and trillions of dollars overseas while America’s infrastructure has fallen into disrepair and decay. We’ve made other countries rich, while the wealth, strength and confidence of our country has dissipated over the horizon. One by one, the factories shuttered and left our shores, with not even a thought about the millions and millions of American workers that were left behind. The wealth of our middle class has been ripped from their homes and then redistributed all across the world.”
It is telling how low we’ve sunk as a nation when the intellectual elitists reference Hitler when pandering to their disturbed demagogues of despair while describing Trump’s speech. I guess the author of the Declaration of Independence would be classified as a Nazi by today’s standards, as his words were directly echoed by Trump:
“Peace, commerce, and honest friendship with all nations…entangling alliances with none” – Thomas Jefferson
“We will seek friendship and goodwill with the nations of the world, but we do so with the understanding that it is the right of all nations to put their own interests first. We do not seek to impose our way of life on anyone, but rather to let it shine as an example. We will shine for everyone to follow.”–Donald Trump
If CNN, MSNBC, or the Washington Post had existed in 1776, they would have classified Thomas Paine as a terrorist, exposing his failed business ventures, failed marriages, and revealing him to be too pugnacious and nasty to be taken seriously. They couldn’t demand that he release his tax returns, since the individual income tax didn’t get enacted until 137 years later in the dreadful year of 1913. They would have glorified King George III as a benevolent father figure and boldly predicted a landslide victory for the British Army against Washington’s ragtag army of farmers.
The dying legacy media are the propaganda arm of the establishment and will need to be crushed without impunity by the Trump administration and the hundreds of alternative truth telling media websites representing the Thomas Paines of today. One Thomas Paine cannot influence 200 million people the way he influenced 2.5 million in 1776, but an irate, tireless minority, keen on setting brushfires of freedom in the minds of men, can make an impact during the most crucial period of this Fourth Turning Crisis.
Trump has pointed out what is wrong with our government. The outcry from those comfortable with the status quo has been spiteful, lashing out irrationally in a crazed manner, which will surely bring more normal people over to Trump’s side. Time and results will convert more to the right side of history.
“A long habit of not thinking a thing wrong, gives it a superficial appearance of being right, and raises at first a formidable outcry in defense of custom. But the tumult soon subsides. Time makes more converts than reason.” –Thomas Paine, Common Sense
Just as the British levied taxes on the colonies to pay the debts of their French & Indian War adventures and their sprawling empire, our malevolent surveillance state wages undeclared wars across the globe, having wasted over $6 trillion in the Middle East since 2003, and extracts taxes from our paychecks at the point of a gun to pay for these neo-con wet dreams. The $20 trillion of accumulated debts and the $200 trillion of unfunded future obligations are nothing but tax obligations of our children and unborn generations.
Just as the British military invaded the homes of American colonists, police state thugs roam our streets with impunity, intimidating, shaking down and acting as the truncheon for the establishment. The Fourth Amendment has been gutted by the powers that be, with the First and Second under constant attack.
Paine believed in the common sense golden rule.
“When I was teaching children I began every day writing this on the blackboard: “Do to others what you would like them to do to you”, telling them how much better the world would be if everybody lived by this rule.” –Thomas Paine, Common Sense
But he realized everyone does not live by that rule. In fact, very few people live by that rule. They believe they are owed something for being born. The right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness isn’t good enough. The leftists fighting Trump tooth and nail believe they are entitled to special rights, privileges, and benefits. These special snowflakes have been triggered by the big bad mean talking Trump and after getting their paychecks from Soros will angrily protest within their liberal urban blue safe zones. If they ever violently venture into the 85% of the country colored red, the carnage will be instantaneous.
The contemptible fake news media continues to flog the popular vote drivel of a country divided. This map shows a much unified country, unified against the liberal elite and their enslaved welfare state dregs occupying the miniscule blue areas on the map. Those in the blue believe it is their right to subdue the will of those in the red. We disagree. Let the hostilities commence. Over 90% of the legally owned firearms reside in the red areas.
“Common sense will tell us, that the power which hath endeavored to subdue us, is of all others, the most improper to defend us.” – Thomas Paine,Common Sense
Donald Trump had much more to lose than to gain by putting himself through the gauntlet of a presidential campaign. He was ridiculed, scorned, attacked, and dismissed by the ruling oligarchy and their prodigious array of propaganda mechanisms. The surveillance state used all their unlawful powers to discredit him.
He has taken on the thankless task of trying to rectify decades of bad decisions, bad policy, bad finance, bad people, and an entrenched bureaucracy of DC swamp creatures. Trump is a billionaire and could have spent his waning years golfing, mentoring his sons, and enjoying the fruits of his labor. But, like the wealthy colonial landowners Washington, Jefferson, and Madison, Trump has taken a huge risk in fighting the Washington Deep State establishment to make government work for the people again.
His inauguration speech was the first salvo in what will be a long and bloody fight. Common Sense was written in 1776 and the ratification of the U.S. Constitution was still thirteen bloody years in the future. Fourth Turnings never end in compromise. They end with a clear victor and a clear loser. The next eight years will surely try men’s souls.
Trump is fighting against a half a century of establishment rule. As we have seen already, they will not go down without a fight. Are we ready to stand and fight, or will we be summer soldiers and sunshine patriots during this crisis, shrinking from the service of our country? The future of our country depends upon our answer.
Aldous Huxley foretold the willful loss of our freedoms back in 1959. Our chance to vanquish the oligarchs has arrived.
“Under the relentless thrust of accelerating over-population and increasing over-organization, and by means of ever more effective methods of mind-manipulation, the democracies will change their nature; the quaint old forms—elections, parliaments, Supreme Courts and all the rest—will remain. The underlying substance will be a new kind of non-violent totalitarianism. All the traditional names, all the hallowed slogans will remain exactly what they were in the good old days. Democracy and freedom will be the theme of every broadcast and editorial—but Democracy and freedom in a strictly Pickwickian sense. Meanwhile the ruling oligarchy and its highly trained elite of soldiers, policemen, thought-manufacturers and mind-manipulators will quietly run the show as they see fit.” – Aldous Huxley, Brave New World Revisited