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A Sea of Freedom

Freedom's Choice

The Folly of Idealism

Posted on May 05,2009

Ahhh, the engine of progress and prosperity! It seems that everybody has a different way to shape that engine for the better. We tend to be divided into two different groups, the Conservative group and the Liberal group.

The Conservative group proclaims their idea of freedom is the ability to do as they want according to their ambitions. Those with less ambition achieve a smaller piece of life's pie, while the motivated among us get the big pieces. And in a purely capitalistic society, this divide between the ambitious and the not so ambitious becomes a reality. A society adopting such an unfettered system of Capitalism ultimately fails. The cancer of poverty among those living within the system only grows because the wealth of that society accumulates to the few. Ultimately, in such a system, those with the money and power choke off those avenues of upward mobility by others. The result is a Society that has two distinct groups, the very wealthy, and the very poor.

But, lest we forget, there is also merit in a risk-reward type of Society. Granted, there is a lot of bad in a purely capitalistic system, but preserving the good from this type of system and creating boundaries that will not allow naked greed to crowd out opportunity for the rest of the members of our society is the challenge.

This is the challenge accepted by those who follow the Liberal philosophical path. Just like Capitalism, there are problems as well as virtues. Both systems, when extended to their limits build a type of elitist aristocracy. Liberals build boundaries that are so onerous to enterprise, that they destroy the can-do attitude and ultimately the incentive to create new things and businesses. The resulting society moves backwards from lack of motivation.

What to do is the question. Finding a path that takes the good from both systems and by fiat leave the bad parts behind is the controversy raging in Washington as we speak. Both sides of the spectrum want things done their way.

Both systems, depending upon which is in power, exhibit the same characteristics. Political patronage, corruption, and the quest for omnipotence are all components of the same drug. Each side excoriates the other in their quest for power. But this piece is only concerned with the bigger picture and not with the localized infighting of the individuals who make up our Government.

A democratically elected Government will naturally interfere with both philosophies. The beauty of a democratically elected Government is that eventually, we will as a Society process the good, bad and ugly and ultimately discard those things that hurt us.

Right now, the Liberal philosophy controls the Government. The Conservatives do not possess the votes to prevent whatever policies put forward, so in a real sense, this is a test for the Liberal philosophy. If it succeeds, the voters will go 'yea' and want to continue with the same. But failure is also a real possibility.

I wanted to make failure the centerpiece of this article because it is failure that is the great teacher for all things. Failure is a humbling experience. If the present Liberal Government, with all of their policies enacted fails to solve our problems, then the American people will have learned just how far we as a nation can take this country to the left. We already have a boundary for how far right we can go. We learned those lessons during the late 1800's and early 1900's and we know that we do not want to return to such oppression. But the left extreme is about to be tested. The Obama administration is on a path to test that boundary.

Take hope all of you worried that the demise of America is imminent. This is a strong country with everybody rooting for her to succeed. It is my firm belief that we will eventually get to choose the good parts of both liberal and conservative philosophies and adapt them into a meaningful system. No, it may not happen overnight, but believers in their philosophies are not dumb and will recognize and boot out those bad elements that create chaos for us. Our future political arguments will lessen in their seriousness and be no more important than which way toilet paper should come off the roll, from the top or from under the roll.

We do live in a sea of freedom. We can choose our direction and will learn only through our mistakes, but this is freedom. Some things sound too good to not try them. Take heart everybody.



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