The Palladium Of Liberty!

***Chapter Two--Conservative Debate Handbook***

The Right & Duty To Keep & Bear Arms

The right to keep & bear arms, inherent to the human condition--hence unalienable--founded on the same philosophic moral basis (individual responsibility) as free enterprise and freedom of conscience. While morally unassailable, it (like free enterprise & free market) is thoroughly practical and utilitarian, conferring numerous benefits. The ultimate benefit is as the linchpin of a free society--that which secures all other freedoms.

The right of the citizens to keep and bear arms has justly been considered as the palladium of the liberties of the republic.--Mr. Justice Joseph Story.


For two centuries, political exponents of man as an individual have fallen into two ideological camps; those who premised their position on Natural Law and moral philosophy, and those who premised their position on Utilitarian considerations. American Conservatives since the Founding Fathers, seeing Government as merely the agency of a social compact between the governed and the State--or between the rulers and the ruled--have viewed the issue as primarily a moral question. Respect for individual Liberty was respect for God's Creation.

From Magna Carta, through Locke and Jefferson, it was the State's respect for this social compact which provided the basis for the individual to respect the authority of the State: for his voluntary submission to its laws, for the duty to serve its needs and defend its interests. Under this concept, the ideological basis for the American Republics, the individual retained his basic natural rights; rights deemed unalienable, coming not from Society (or the State as the political manifestation of Society); but bestowed by the Almighty as inherent to the very nature of man.

These rights included personal freedom in relation to economic endeavor, free access to the market and a right to retain the fruits of one's labor--rewards usually determined by the market, which became the property of one endeavoring, to be passed on to his family and heirs;--together with freedom of personal conscience, limited only by one's obligations to that social compact; and together (by obvious implication) with the right to defend what was one's own.

Jefferson put it thus in the Declaration Of Independence:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men....are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

That Jefferson changed the "life, liberty and property," of the older exponents of Natural Law, was in no respect a trivialization of the essential justice or moral foundation for private property. Jefferson was land rich--but often cash poor (not infrequently the landowner's problem)--and believed in a society of free holders. But the Declaration was an exposition of the moral, Creation derived, basis for human society; and it recognized that the unalienable rights of man included the right to pursue happiness not only via economic or utilitarian pursuits, but via art, philosophy, devotion, reflection and whimsy. The Fathers understood that for many there were things more important than the worldly or material.

While the document defines the moral rather than utilitarian basis for the early American adherence to maximum individual freedom, it clearly implies both the right of a free people to keep and bear arms--else how indeed could they alter or abolish an errant Government--and the utility of an armed population. (We will return to this in more detail.)

The principle that armed free men could and should legally rise against a Government that violated the social compact was at least 561 years old when Jefferson penned the Declaration. The Magna Carta (1215) provided in part (Chapters 60 & 61, Magna Carta Commission Translation, 1964):

60 All the customs and liberties aforesaid, which We have granted to be enjoyed, as far as in Us lies, by Our people throughout Our kingdom, let all Our subjects, whether clerks or laymen, observe, as far as in them lies, toward their dependents.

61 Whereas We, for the honor of God and the amendment of Our realm, and in order the better to allay the discord arisen between Us and Our barons, have granted all these things aforesaid, We, willing that they be forever enjoyed wholly..., do give and grant to Our subjects the following security, to wit, that the barons shall elect any twenty-five barons of the kingdom..., who shall ... keep, hold, and cause to be kept the peace and liberties which We have granted unto them... so that if We, Our Justiciary, bailiffs, or any of Our ministers offend in any respect against any man, or shall transgress any of these articles ..., and the offense be brought before four of the said twenty-five barons, those four barons shall come before Us, ...declaring the offense, and shall demand speedy amends for the same. If we ... fail to afford redress within the space of forty days from the time the case was brought before Us ..., the aforesaid four barons shall refer the matter to the rest of the twenty-five barons, who together with the commonalty of the whole country, shall distrain and distress Us to the utmost of their power, to wit, by capture of Our castles, lands, and possessions and by all other possible means, until compensation be made....etc..

The Utilitarian argument for individual liberty is quite different. It is premised not on compact or on what is right, but on what confers the greatest benefit to the greatest number. The motivation is the interest of the collective, the economy or society, rather than an acceptance of the Nature of God's Creation or a concern for establishing a moral basis for the individual's duty towards society. Jeremy Bentham, the definer of this approach, put it more simply: The sole object of government ought to be the greatest happiness of the greatest possible number of the community.

While this collectivist perspective is offensive to most American Conservatives--your correspondent among them--because it reverses basic priorities; the realities of man's nature render the debate largely academic as it pertains to most purely economic decisions facing the modern State. (The distinctions are of course vital to many other questions.) America recognized and respected the individuality of man, because it was morally right. But having accepted the freedoms which flowed from that recognition, America demonstrated to the entire world, the utilitarian benefits of a free society.

For the first 150 years of Independence, we put the individual on his own mettle to determine his material position in life. And the resulting free, market driven economy, proved so much more utilitarian than any of the more regimented societies overseas, that those who came here--from infinitely varied backgrounds--all did better here than their ancestral cousins had ever done in their ancestral homelands: For all the vast range of ethnic types, the same experiment, the same result.

The dynamics were not hard to fathom; although they had escaped much of the old world throughout the ages. By making the motivater not the prescriptions of the theorist, but the self-directed, self-interest of the participant, we unlocked the energy (both mental and physical) of the whole people; each aspiring participant driven to find what he or she could do on which the free market put the greatest value. Communism collapsed because fear and coercion could not bring out the same effective level of individual involvement. It simply could not compete. Today, even the Socialist Governments of Western Europe are engaged in denationalizing industry, and pinning their future plans on market economics and private enterprise, precisely because of that utility; although in other respects many preserve their studied contempt for man as an individual.

It is clearly morally right--inherent to the human situation--that free men be allowed to obtain and possess the arms needed to protect themselves and their families--including the fruits of their and their forebears' labor. There is surely no point in the historic compact, where anyone gave up the right to self-protection on the promise of political protection. The right to exact punishment for crime is a different matter. There, there is reasonable consideration, a "trade off." The State assumed the function of punishment, subject to the rights of a fair trial, etc.. We gave up the right to take private vengeance on the promise of a fairly administered system of Justice. There, there is time for deliberation.

There is no similar trade off for surrendering the right to self-protection. The threat to life or property is usually immediate, compelling an immediate response. It can not be delegated to an Agency acting in the future. Even if half the total population were recruited into a police force, there would still be no way that it could completely protect us--even at the incalculably heavy expense that such a dispensation would entail. The freedom to arm oneself against such an immediate threat is obviously morally right.

But the right of the people, generally, to keep and bear arms is also utilitarian, conveying a clear benefit to the Social Order, and to the citizenry at large. That utility springs from the same human dynamics as those which make the free market work and the free economy prosper. Again it is the total involvement of the whole people, in a Society premised on individual responsibility, which unleashes a force for which no plan, and no collection of planners, can ever provide a substitute. A privately armed Society, all else being equal, will be a safer Society than one where only the rulers have arms.

The Second Amendment

The Second Article to the Amendments of the Constitution of the United States of America provides: A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.

While only the second to be adopted, there is clearly no Article of the Bill of Rights which is more important to the maintenance of Liberty! As the above comment by Mr. Justice Story proclaims, it is the right to keep and bear arms which protects all of the other liberties of our peoples. Moreover, it has a wider applicability than most of the other Articles. For example, while all of us are supposed to enjoy Freedom Of Speech, Freedom of the Press and Freedom of Religion--at least as against Congressional interference--under the First Amendment; only a relatively small percentage of the public are ever really concerned with speaking out on controversial matters; even fewer ever read the editorial pages of newspapers; only a tiny percentage engage in publishing. While most Americans believe in God, many never attend formal religious services. Since it is only a public observation or demonstration of faith that even the most despotic tyranny can interfere with; the large number of non-denominational Americans derive only incidental benefit from the First Amendment.

But all of us need protection. And although many Americans do not avail themselves of their rights to keep and bear arms; far more do than speak out on issues or join unpopular Churches. More significant, all Americans derive a benefit from having a large number, who do in fact "keep and bear," in their midst. This was well understood by the original defenders of our liberty.

Laws that forbid the carrying of arms... disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes. ...Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man.--Thomas Jefferson, quoting with approval a noted criminologist of his day.

There has been an attempt by some anti-gun fanatics--and how else may we describe one who would take away his neighbor's right of self-defense--to confuse a clear understanding of traditional American liberty, by citing the coupling of "a well regulated militia being necessary...," with "the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed"; as though the first clause was limitation to the second. But close scrutiny will not support such confusion.

The existence of the various State militia--regulated or unregulated--was never set up as a condition precedent, nor ever intended to imply a limitation on the manifest right and assumed duty of American free men to arm themselves to protect their selves and families. The emphasis--the thrust of the linkage, as anyone familiar with contemporary concepts will immediately appreciate--was entirely in the opposite direction. A population, self armed and well schooled in the use of small arms, was deemed essential to having an effective Militia. And the expectation of effective State Militia, trained to a common Federal standard, but always officered and ordinarily controlled by those appointed in the States except in times of common danger; was the reason the Constitutional Fathers were able to limit appropriations for a standing army to two years (Constitution, Article I, Section 8).

The Fathers saw a large standing army as a threat to liberty. A review of the treatises on the subject in the Federalist (the essays written to explain the proposed Constitution, and to obtain its ratification), by Alexander Hamilton (No. 29) and by James Madison (No. 46), will readily demonstrate that the cited linkage was never intended as limitation on individual freedom; rather as a safeguard against an overbearing Federal authority; one of our most vital "checks and balances"; a source, if need be, to overthrow usurpers.

The definition of State Militia, under our system, was always the able bodied manhood of a State. Jefferson explained the setup in his Notes On The State Of Virginia in 1782. (Note the tone of lament that the Militia were not better armed.) From Query IX:

Every able-bodied freeman, between the ages of 16 and 50, is enrolled in the militia... The law requires every militia man to provide himself with the arms usual in the regular service. But this injunction was always indifferently complied with, and the arms they had have been so frequently called for to arm the regulars, that in the lower parts of the country they are entirely disarmed. In the middle country a fourth or fifth part of them may have such firelocks as they had provided to destroy the noxious animals which infest their farms; and on the western side of the Blue Ridge they are generally armed with rifles.

What the Constitutional plan envisioned for the regulation of the militia, as it pertained to Federal, State and individual volition in the direction of arms, may be inferred from some of Hamilton's comments in the aforementioned Federalist Paper No. 29:

Little more can reasonably be aimed at, with respect to the people at large, [the unregulated, undisciplined and basically inactive part of the militia] than to have them properly armed and equipped...

But though the scheme of disciplining the whole nation must be abandoned...; it is a matter of the utmost importance that a well-digested plan should ... be adopted for the proper establishment of the militia. will be possible to have an excellent body of well-trained militia, ready to take the field whenever the defence of the State shall require it. This will not only lessen the call for military establishments; but if circumstances should ...oblige the Government to form an army of any magnitude, that army can never be formidable to the liberties of the people, while there is a large body of citizens, little, if at all, inferior to them in discipline and the use of arms, who stand ready to defend their own rights and those of their fellow-citizens. This appears ...the only substitute that can be devised for a standing army; and the best possible security against it if it should exist.

Madison (Paper No. 46) put the same concepts and concerns slightly differently:

Let a regular army, fully equal to the resources of the country, be formed; and let it be entirely at the devotion of the Federal Government; still it would not be going too far to say, that the State Governments with the people on their side, would be able to repel the danger. ....To these [the regular army] would be opposed a militia... of citizens with arms in their hands, officered by men chosen from among themselves, fighting for their common liberties, and united and conducted by Governments possessing their affections and confidence. ...Besides the advantage of being armed, which the Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation, the existence of subordinate Governments, to which the people are attached, and by which the militia officers are appointed, forms a barrier against the enterprises of ambition, more insurmountable than any which a simple Government of any form can admit of.

Clearly Madison saw private arms as the security of a free State--and a free citizenry--against the potential of Federal tyranny. Where would stand that security, if the Federal Administration contemplating an unauthorized extension of Federal power, were to be permitted to define the circumstances under which a citizen might arm himself?

As a final witness that the Fathers' linkage of regulation of the militia with an acknowledgment of the people's right to keep and bear arms, was never intended as a limitation on the latter but rather as a prodding for the former, we cite George Washington. Throughout his Presidency, Washington repeatedly called for improvement and standardization of the training of the more active militia members in order to meet the security needs of the United States. A few years earlier, at the conclusion of the War, General Washington had put his thoughts on the Common Defence into a May 2, 1783 draft to Alexander Hamilton, entitled Sentiments On A Peace Establishment: prove ...the Policy and expediency of resting the protection of the Country on a respectable and well established Militia, we might not only shew the propriety ...from our peculiar local situation, but we might have recourse to the Histories of Greece and Rome in their most virtuous and Patriotic ages.... we might see, with admiration, the Freedom and Independence of Switzerland supported for Centuries, in the midst of powerful and jealous neighbors, by means of a hardy and well organized Militia. ...

It may be laid down as a primary position, and the basis of our system, that every Citizen who enjoys the protection of a free Government, owes not only a proportion of his property, but even of his personal services to the defence of it, and consequently that the Citizens of America (with a few legal and official exceptions) from 18 to 50 Years of Age should be borne on the Militia Rolls, provided with uniform Arms, and so far accustomed to the use of them, that the Total strength of the Country might be called forth at a Short Notice...

The following month, June 8, 1783, Washington reported to the States, in surrendering the solemn trust of his command:

The Militia of this Country must be considered as the Palladium of our security, and the first effectual resort in case of hostility...

Washington's reference to the Swiss was quite revealing. Trained, as school boys, in the safe, correct and deadly accurate use of arms, the Swiss had and have managed to maintain an armed neutrality for generations amidst their more warlike, but less war efficient neighbors. While world travelers have reported for generations that Switzerland, where every household has its own military grade weapons, has the lowest crime rate in Europe. The Swiss have also managed to preserve the diverse rights of their 22 Cantons (or States) better than any other Federation in the world.

Yet perhaps the single most important reason why Washington wanted America to adopt the Swiss system, is that it teaches the youth--in the most immediate and compelling manner--the importance of that level of personal responsibility on which all of our other institutions are based. It gives youth a sense of purpose, importance and self-worth, for which all the words expended by "Liberal" theorists, from the Creation to this day, are no substitute.

A Response To Frivolous Diversionary Arguments Against Private Arms

Those who seek to disarm America's citizens always put a heavy emphasis on safety. They do not discuss the safety of the law abiding from the pestilence of crime and criminals; nor the protection of the Constitution from the would be usurpers of power. Rather, they treat us to endless dissertations on the potential danger of having firearms in the home, on the person, or anywhere near at hand. Basically these amount to a gross exaggeration of the significance of what everyone recognizes--has always recognized--that firearms are a dangerous tool. So too are fire, electricity, and motor vehicles. So, too, if abused, are water, carpenters' tools, stoves, and gardener's tools; steak knives and carving sets, bricks and ladders.

The point then is no point. What it telegraphs--loud and clear--is that the user of the argument does not value the right of self-defense. He focuses on the danger of firearms rather than motor vehicles, central heating or electricity, because he does not think protection of life and property is as important as convenient transportation or "toasty" comfort and a house full of appliances. Were it otherwise, he would see the obvious:

We have reduced the enormous danger from motor vehicles--although still a greater killer and maimer than firearms--by campaigns for safety education and procedures, which start with the very young and extend through life. We teach even very small children, not to play with matches; not to touch the burners on a stove; not to put their hands near fire; not to play with electrical connections.

Few, today, would propose going back to the days before Ford and Edison because of safety considerations. If a new danger is identified, we educate against it. There is absolutely no reason not to teach children from the same very early ages, about the danger inherent in an improper use of firearms. No defender of the inherent right of a free people to keep and bear private arms has any problem with such teaching.

We are not suggesting a licensing requirement. Driving on a public highway is a privilege--that highway did not have to be constructed--and may be licensed. The right to keep and bear is inherent to the human situation. Yet that in no way limits the need or ability of parents and society to emphasize safety. No one licenses children to cross streets; but from the time they begin to walk, we teach them to look both ways. No one licenses children to use the appliances in the modern home. But from the time they are able to crawl to an electrical outlet, we teach them rules of safety. There are still innumerable home accidents; but we have greatly reduced the danger by teaching the correct, safe and proper, use of other tools. There is no rational reason to treat firearms any differently.

Some of the clamor against private arms has come from persons of the same ideological stripe as those who have advocated international disarmament as the path to Peace. The mythical ostrich, his head planted deep in the sands of self-inflicted ignorance, is the great prophet of the pacifist. And even as the popularity of pacifism, following World War I, contributed to the foreign adventures of Communists and Nazis--at the expense of tens of millions of lost lives--so the concept of a less violent response to crime has emboldened those without moral conscience in the more "liberal" venues of America.

There are two aspects of what might be called the "muted response" to the criminal act: The first, another facet of the misguided preoccupation with "safety"; safety as seen from the pacifist delusion. The other, a compulsive concern for the well-being of the criminal. The popularity of these approaches closely parallels the explosion in juvenile crime over recent decades, strongly suggesting that our less moral youth are drawing the reasonable conclusion.

The pacifist version of the muted response, as applied to the property owner, urges him not to endeavor to protect what is his, either on the theory that to do so might provoke a violent response on the part of the criminal--causing a confrontation where the property owner might get the worst of it;--or on the theory that property is not worth the risk of maiming or killing another human being. Obviously, the answer to the first concern is better training for the property owner. That is what the Fathers thought our clear duty, anyway. The second concern really requires no answer. But we will offer the obvious in a moment.

The idea that the defence of property can not justify taking a human life, is the precise basis for that other aspect of the muted response, seen across America in departmental protocols that require police to chase, rather than shoot, fleeing criminals; that sometimes lead to charges being filed against property owners who successfully defend what is theirs by "taking out" those attempting its removal. It would make as much sense to respond to an invading army with slogans about "the sanctity of human life" and "social justice"; nay, more sense, because the invading army could well be populated with decent and honorable young men, serving their country; while the thief, waging his personal war on you and your neighbor, may be morally the scum of the earth.

The concept that there is a dichotomy between property rights and other human rights, is at the core of the most mischievous heresy against reason and common sense in all the annals of pseudo social progress. Men and women hold property; not property, humans. One's property may represent the fruits of a lifetime of labor; perhaps the fruits of many lifetimes of labor. Most of those with a sense of heritage and purpose, labor in large measure for what they can do for those who will come after--their children and their children's children, down through the generations. Even among those of a spiritual, rather than material pursuit, private property may still represent the blood, sweat, toil and tears, of persons living or dead. Indeed, it is often that little bit of material wealth, which makes possible a life-long pursuit of things of the spirit.

No one can relive the past--other than in the eye of memory. One may be able to replace stolen property through insurance, or by laboring to replace it; but the cost of that replacement will be an expenditure of time or money, otherwise available for other purposes. You can never bring back the years you spent in struggle; nor ever, the lives of loved ones, who may have worked their whole lives that you and yours could live better lives than they.

The choice then, whether to use force to stop one from stealing what is yours, is not a question between life and property. Both you and the thief are live beings; the issue between you is property. The question involves whose life, and what shall be the quality thereof: The life or lives--or a significant portion thereof--of those who respect, or respected, the social order and the ways of civilized peoples--including their rights to property and privacy--versus the life or lives of those waging an immediate and personal war against those fundamental rights of you and your loved ones? The decision should really not be terribly difficult!

Nor should the subsidiary one, of how we defend what is rightfully ours. Do we make that defense dependent upon the criminal's choice of weapon? Do we expect the property owner--or maybe his wife or daughter--to have to wrestle with some thug over the family silver, or maybe even over the sanctity of his daughter's body, because some "Liberal" has said that guns are too dangerous to be allowed in the home? The cruelty inherent in that suggestion is staggering!

Again, the threat when it arises is savage and immediate. The Police can only respond later--maybe to start the punishment process after the damage has been done; often only to file a report, on which no action is ever taken. And no Police work, however skilled, can ever restore your daughter's innocence. (As for your grandparents' silver? That will be melted down without a trace.)

It is fundamentally wrong, morally wrong, to deny the law-abiding mainstream the right to use logical tools to defend themselves against such thuggery!

But again to return to the utilitarian. As the expectation of the would-be burglar, robber, rapist or arsonist, is increasingly for the muted response, he is emboldened; we will all have more crime with which to deal. As his expectation tilts towards an image of having to deal with an armed victim, comfortable and effective in the use of weapons, he will consider changing his ways; we will all benefit. And if he still persists; it is a lot cheaper to bury him than to house him for life in a penal colony. He must make his choice. We will make ours.

* * * * * * *

The favorite "arguments" of the foes of freedom are actually not arguments at all. An argument, philosophically, is an appeal to reason. The constant focus, the endless iteration of the details of every gun accident or incident in the "liberal" media, is an appeal to fear. The tortured but ostentatious law suits, now being filed by ultra-"liberal" urban administrations against the manufacturers of firearms, are appeals to greed, intended in reality as a restraint on trade. They will probably persist until the gun manufacturers gather enough evidence of an illegal conspiracy, outside the scope of the initiators' duties in city government, to strip away any pretense of personal immunity. And the perpetrators will then run like rats, leaving a sinking ship. (Or does anyone really believe that these suits just all happened to arise independently, with no collusion or ulterior design?!)

[On the question of whether the availability of firearms somehow causes the outbreaks of adolescent rage, increasingly evident, we refer you to the essays on Something of Value and Feminism, at this web site.]

The Times In Which We Live

There are indeed tides in the affairs of men, which flow for a time in one direction and then ebb and flow in another. While eventually it may turn, the tide for the past century in America--with only an occasional hesitation--has been flowing towards an ever greater Federal power--an ever more intrusive and restrictive Central Authority. It would be difficult to imagine a time less suitable for stripping away the public's right to private arms; that which the Fathers--Federalist and Jeffersonian alike--saw as the last line of defense against despotic Government.

The Declaration of Independence is only a click away at the bottom of this Chapter. The bulk of the Declaration is not quoted much these days--and for good reason. It reads as an indictment of unrestrained and intrusive Government; and this is the age of unrestrained and intrusive Government. Consider just a few of the things Americans have witnessed since the New Deal, from a Government we are now asked to trust with every right we possess:

In 1934, the Supreme Court upheld the Federal Government's repudiation of its own contractual obligations to pay the holders of "Gold Clause" bonds in gold. Of course, the entire reason for the gold payment clause in the bonds was as security against a devalued currency. But when the Government under Roosevelt decided to devalue the currency, it repudiated that security. (Talk about trust in Government!)

In 1942, the Court upheld Federal regulation of agriculture, which penalized a farmer for growing food for his own table on his own farm (Wickard vs. Filburn). Was that what the farm boys fought for at Lexington and Concord, Trenton or Yorktown? Did they suffer the winter at Valley Forge for that sort of Society?!

In the 1930s, the Federal Government began to police private employment agreements between worker and employer. In the 1960s, it moved on to decree that Americans could no longer exercise private racial, religious or ethnic preferences in employment, or in places of public accommodation. In the same era, the Federal Government assumed a role as the guarantor of health care for the aging and retired. In the past decade, the Federal Government has taken action to prevent attempted seduction or even flirtation in the workplace. On the pretext of protecting children in a religious community, where the practitioners kept personal military weapons (ie. tools which General Washington said should be issued to the householder); it has wiped out that community--men, women and children!

What these and a great many other contemporaneous political innovations have in common, is that all involve radical extensions of the functions the Fathers gave to the Federal Government. We have retrogressed to a Central power more intrusive by far than the Eighteenth Century British Government, repudiated by the Patriots.

We recognize that in this age of "politically correct" education--both public and private--not even all Conservatives will see these innovations in the same light. But no one remotely aware of the origins of a free America can fail to see a pattern. A people who once celebrated the rugged individual--the rights of every man to be unique, and the duty of each man to be responsible--no longer even respect the type, or the old ethic that sustained him. For those who still cherish the Spirit of '76--the armed Minute Men, ready to fight for liberty at a moment's notice--these are increasingly the "times which try men's souls."

This is a Chapter in a debate handbook for the young Conservative, designed to suggest an approach to the persuasive arts. It is not a pamphlet calling for any more violent action. But if we continue to lose the political debate for a free America, we will soon come to a point where we will be faced with a true crisis of the Will.

The rest of the World has not suddenly embraced Liberty--as the Fathers knew it--but only economic Utilitarianism. Unwilling to really trust individual members of its varied societies--outside of Switzerland and the former Settler states in Africa--it has never even considered the utility of an armed citizenry. It will continue in the present economic path only until some new Pied Piper leads the collectivists off in another direction. At that point, you can be certain that the type of American "Liberal," who could not wait to follow the British Fabians into a "Welfare State," will be on the same bandwagon.

If what is left of the American tradition is further subverted, you need not wonder at your children's future. With modern electronic propaganda, surveillance, and the methodology of control, freedom lost will be freedom gone. Neither your children, nor their children's children, will ever likely know its like again!

William Flax

[Download any article at this Web Site onto Flash Drive for safe storage.] Conservative Intelligence Center

Conservative Debate Handbook

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Pursuit Of "Diversity," Return To Babel?

Gold & Money In America

Freedom Of Choice? Gulliver Discovers America!

Libya, America & The Law Of Nations

Perception Of Reality--Or Lack Of It

A Place For The America We Knew?

American Essentials

Ultimate Insult--A Perspective On Egalitarianism

Cloud Dancing--Social Medium For Scoundrels & Neurotics

Answer To "Dancing">>
America, Built On Experience & Reason

Keynesian Harvest, 2008 & Beyond

Gaming The Question--Staple of Demagogues

Better Term: "Liberal" Or "Mipip?"

"Social Justice"--Not Social & Not Just

Congress & The Regulation Of Commerce

The Price Of Egalitarianism

Our Duty, If Present Trends Continue?

Liberty: The Basics

International Relations: The A & Q Personality

Responsibility Factor

George Washington vs George W. Bush on Foreign Policy

"Liberals" Create Hate in America

Columbine? School Killings vs. "Something of Value"

Destroying Cultural Continuity--Leftist War On Social Cohesion

How The Welfare State Works

Declaration Of Independence--With Study Guide


No American journalist in the 20th Century wrote with greater clarity or precision, none with more compelling rhetoric or cadence, than James Jackson Kilpatrick, Editor of the Richmond (Virginia) News Leader in the 1950s and early '60s. In 1957, he wrote The Sovereign States to challenge increasing Federal encroachment into State & local affairs. The book was not only philosophically & Constitutionally sound; it exhibited, in sparkling prose, some of the best American Conservative writing of the 20th Century. Now, 62 years later, it is available on line:

The Sovereign States

Conservative Resource Menu--250+ Items