3.19.2012

Unnatural Relations VI

"The separation out of individual liberty and the placing it in conflict with the community by modern political philosophy has been the greatest asset imperialism has enjoyed - it has provided imperialism with its strongest motivating drive and its most powerful legal weapons. Government has aggrandized itself by posing as the defender of the individual against the community. To the Founders the community was the context into which the individual was born or admitted, a context which provided him with a secure identity and the possibility of realizing his potential as a human being. Community implied a degree of homogeneity and stability, of givenness. Cultural activity was an expression of the personality of the community. Political activity, in a healthy and republican community, was the effort to enhance the well-being of the community in regard to its domestic peace and its freedom from the foreign enemy.
...Individual liberty was thus a byproduct of membership in good standing of a free community, not a grant from government. Therefore, individual liberty was much more effectively guaranteed by limitation upon government than by grant of rights. To assume any other grounds for republican citizenship was to assume (and a great deal of what passes at present for democratic political philosophy does so assume) that man derived his worth from the government, that he had no intrinsic value. This may indeed be true of imperial man. It is not true of republican man. Even man's relation to the Almighty, while transcending nations and cultures, has no particular means to express and perpetuate itself except through the personality of a particular community."

-Citizens or Subjects?, Clyde N. Wilson

Men will always be placed under the rule of men. There is no absolute freedom. The question, then, is not whether we will be ruled, we most certainly will be. Rather, the question is whether rule will come from local authority or foreign authority. Local authority may sometimes rule poorly. Foreign authority always will.

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