Friday, July 29, 2011

The Lie of all Munchkins

I was going to say the "Munchkin of all Lies" but I didn't want you to think I was talking about any particular Munchkin (Sarah?)

This theme isn't exactly new on these pages but it came to me in such stark terms last night with Boehner's Debacle and watching a clip of Michelle Bachman going on about "the government this" and "the government that." It's tempting to say the quote: "the government is the problem" is the problem (thank you, President Reagan) but it goes much deeper to the core of a very simple truth. WE ARE THE GOVERNMENT. Of course, it also makes Walt Kelly's immortal turn of the phrase have extra, ironic truth, "We have met the enemy, and he is us."

So, I'd like to make a simple request. Please read two, short, but important documents that everyone should know. And then please explain to me why we blame something other than ourselves rather than taking responsibility for ourselves, that is, ourselves individually and collectively as we, all of us, Republican, Democrat, Independent, Black, White, Brown, Catholic, Jew, Muslim (Mormon), etc., etc., etc., are our more perfect Union:

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.
. . . .

Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.

Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.

But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate -- we can not consecrate -- we can not hallow -- this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

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