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The past two years appear to have been an ongoing crisis, well outside of the coronavirus pandemic.
Soaring prices for cars, gasoline, appliances, wood, houses and food revisit the miseries of the 1970s.
Anarchy defines the border.
A new dividing tribalism focuses on “critical race theory”.
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Unelected Washington greats from the CIA, FBI, IRS, NSA, and the Pentagon – like John Brennan, James Comey, Lois Lerner, Gen. Mark Milley, and Robert Mueller – feign ignorance or mislead under oath – or even break or ignore the laws without consequences.
The old customs and laws are attacked by the Electoral College until the composition of a century and a half of the Supreme Court.
The current administration is looking to the United Nations, the World Health Organization and the Paris Climate Agreement for answers to America’s problems.
What’s going on?
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All of these everyday melodramas are the natural dividends of the waning power of the independent American citizen – politically, economically, socially and culturally. Citizens become inert as radical ideas take root that our Founders never considered.
Again, what once distinguished Western democracies in general and the American Republic in particular was strong citizenship.
A chauvinistic and broad middle class controlled the privilege and influence of the rich. Yet he lacked the addictions – and often the envy – of the poor. The middle class was economically self-sufficient. His subsequent empowerment ruled the electorate.
Americans once viewed the physical space of the United States as both sacred and their own laboratory for democracy. The immigrants arrived in a diverse and legal manner. As guests, all newcomers were to be integrated and assimilated into the American civic identity.
America has been one of the few successful multiracial and multiethnic democracies in history. And Americans have come to accept, through civic education and constant self-criticism, that the ancient global scourge of tribalism was only leading to national oblivion.
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So, they undertook the hard work to realize Martin Luther King, Jr.’s vision that our characters, not our race, are what matters.
There were other challenges to citizenship as the country grew powerful and wealthy. A huge government bureaucracy has insidiously diverted the power of elected officials to “improve” – but also often to damage – the lives of Americans.
Because these administrators of a permanent state posed as our paternal benefactors, few citizens initially opposed the sweeping tax increases and unelected officials.
But soon the citizens began to worry that the unelected of our bureaucracies had combined the role of the judiciary, the executive and the legislature. Very often, government greats have acted as judges, jurors, and executioners when their regulations, orders, fines and punishments have crushed vulnerable citizens without state resources.
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More formally, our professional legal, academic and politically active elitists have lost faith in ancient customs and the Constitution itself. They hate the fact that our traditions have privileged individual freedom over government-imposed equality of outcome.
Over the past two years, we have seen progressive efforts to end the 233-year-old electoral college and constitutional guarantees for states to set their own voting protocols in national elections. The 150-year-old nine-judge Supreme Court, the filibuster of the 180-year-old Senate, and the 60-year-old notion of a 50-state union are all also under attack.
Apparently, the left thinks these customs and laws hinder our fatal march towards radical socialist democracy – or more likely the rule of what 51% of people prefer on any given day.
Globalization over the past half century has created two Americans. One is limited red states whose manufacturing, assembly and processing plants have been shipped overseas or shut down. In contrast, the privileged bi-coastal elites of the Blue States have become fabulously wealthy in new multi-billion dollar markets for their legal, academic, financial, investment and technological expertise.
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Soon politics followed money. And today, our ruling and professional classes often feel more comfortable with global norms – various UN commissions, the social mores of the European Union and the diktats of the World Health Organization or of the International Criminal Court – than with those of their own American compatriots. .
Yet if we were to restore the original idea of empowered citizens, then many of our current crises would go away.
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