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Saturday, September 29, 2012

The Cult of the Founding Fathers

Reading about Thomas Jefferson, in the October issue of The Smithsonian:
“One cannot question the genuineness of Jefferson’s liberal dreams,” writes historian David Brion Davis. “He was one of the first statesmen in any part of the world to advocate concrete measures for restricting and eradicating Negro slavery.”
But in the 1790s, Davis continues, “the most remarkable thing about Jefferson’s stand on slavery is his immense silence.” And later, Davis finds, Jefferson’s emancipation efforts “virtually ceased.”
Somewhere in a short span of years during the 1780s and into the early 1790s, a transformation came over Jefferson.
Read more:

There are a couple of Supreme Court justices, Mr. Justice Scalia most prominently, whose legal philosophy seems to be a quest to channel the minds and intellects of the framers of the Constitution.

An enormous problem with this conceit is the assumption that the Founding Fathers never changed, never grew out of any attitudes, and forever remained together as in an enormous still shot from the film 1776.

Read a bit of Jefferson's nail factory staffed by children, and how productivity was increased by whipping the children to their work; read how the letters referring to this were consciously suppressed by Jefferson's most important historians in the 1950's; it may become clear that even some of the most important Founding Fathers had sometimes instincts and ideas which we would abhor.

Therefore, the Constitution is ours to preserve as a living document, not as a mummy shroud wrapped in
the mists of history and delved by the legal imaginings of justices who should know better.


Seeker said...

Very interesting. I need to fine out more about the children in the nail factory. Never heard that.

But I assume all men would be tyrants if they could, including you, and Jefferson.

Power corrupts in other words. Plus, to speak bluntly, Jefferson had to chose. He could be part of the economic lower class, and have little or no status, and get little or no pussy. Men are motivated by power prestige and pussy, which is to say it bluntly, but accurately.

SO, did he want to be working class, get laid seldom, have little status? HELL NO.

Want to learn about a true son of a bitch? By comparison, Jefferson was a great guy

Look into Robert E Lee, who bought women and children from bounty hunters, paying 600% higher bounties for young girls, according to his slave ledgers.

Also, Lee had slaves whipped, including girls. In one case, maybe more, he screamed at at 14 year old girl as he had her whipped.

I will take Jefferson over Lee any day.

Montag said...

I never heard about it either, but as "The Smithsonian" article says, the report was consciously and thoroughly suppressed in the 1950's by the reputable historian in charge of the business.

Regarding Power, I would say that Power without Ongoing Spiritual Quest corrupts.
We see today Power without Spirit, because somehow the Spirit is always assumed to be part of "Church-y" things, and the separation of Church and State is absolute.

Spirituality is not a commodity of churches... many of those churches back in the 19th century enabled Lee's cruelties.
Throughout history, churches and their religion have proved to be the death of spirit and the accomplices of unbridled Power.