Quote of the Day – Freedom and Equality

 

Human beings are born with different capacities. If they are free, they are not equal. And if they are equal, they are not free. – Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

Which matters more to you? Freedom or equality? For me it is freedom. I believe everyone should be allowed to rise to the level of their abilities. That makes sense (for me) since in a free society I am like a cork. I bob to the surface pretty quickly.

I can see why others might think this unfair, preferring equality.  To do so creates a society of the lowest common denominator.  To see where the differences in the two approaches lead compare 1970s West Germany to 1970s East Germany, the 1980s US to the 1980s Soviet Union or present-day South Korea to present-day North Korea.

DEI believes in equality of outcome – at least in theory it does.  The reality is it permits a small fraction of gatekeepers who decide issues of equity to live in luxury while the rest of society is granted the equality of misery at the lowest common denominator. Even if it worked in theory, it would condemn the vast majority of those alive to live lives far below their potential.

Freedom or equality. Pick one. Equality before the law and freedom? Absolutely.  Equality of results and freedom? Not possible. And equality of result is the heart of DEI. That is why DEI must die.

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  1. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    I am not sure I am either.

    • #1
  2. David Foster Member
    David Foster
    @DavidFoster

    Most of the people who say they are for Equality are in reality for no such thing. Link.

     

    • #2
  3. philo Member
    philo
    @philo

    A brief turn once again to American Individualism (Herbert Hoover):

    And from it all I emerge an individualist – an unashamed individualist. But let me say also that I am an American individualist. – Page 6

    No doubt, individualism run riot, with no tempering principle, would provide a long category of inequalities, of tyrannies, dominations, and injustices. America, however, has tempered the whole conception of individualism by the injection of a definite principle, and from this principle it follows that attempts at domination, whether in government or in the processes of industry and commerce, are under an insistent curb. If we would have the values of individualism, their stimulation to initiative, to the development of land and intellect, to the high development of thought and spirituality, they must be tempered with that firm and fixed ideal of American individualism – an equality of opportunity. If we would have these values we must soften its hardness and stimulate progress through that sense of service that lies in our people.

    Therefore, it is not the individualism of other countries for which I would speak, but the individualism of America. Our individualism differs from all others because it embraces these great ideals: that while we build our society upon the attainment of the individual, we shall safeguard to every individual an equality of opportunity to take that position in the community to which his intelligence, character, ability, and ambition entitle him; that we keep the social solution free from frozen strata of classes, that we shall stimulate effort of each individual to achievement; that through an enlarging sense of responsibility and understanding we shall assist him to this attainment; while he in turn must stand up to the emery wheel of competition. – Pages 6-8

    We in America have had too much experience of life to fool ourselves into pretending that all men are equal in ability, in character, in intelligence, and ambition, That was part of the clap-trap of the French Revolution. We have grown to understand that all we can hope to assure to the individual through government is liberty, justice, intellectual welfare, equality of opportunity, and stimulation to service.

    It is in maintenance of a society fluid to these human qualities that our individualism departs from the individualism of Europe. There can be no rise for the individual through the frozen strata of classes, or of castes, and no stratification can take place in a mass livened by the free stir of its particles. The guarding of our individualism against stratification insists not only in preserving in the social solution an equal opportunity for the able and ambitious to rise from the bottom; it also insists that the sons of the successful shall not by any mere right of birth or favor continue to occupy their fathers’ places of power against the rise of a new generation in process of coming up from the bottom. … Otherwise our American fields of opportunity would have been clogged with long generations inheriting their fathers’ privileges without their fathers’ capacity for service. – Pages 15-16

    I’ll stop there (I can cut and paste those all morning)…but the answer is clearly American Freedom (or Liberty). It ensures both. 

    • #3
  4. Seawriter Contributor
    Seawriter
    @Seawriter

    David Foster (View Comment):

    Most of the people who say they are for Equality are in reality for no such thing. Link.

    That was that small fraction of gatekeepers who decide issues of equity comment is about. The nomenklatura in the USSR and the Woke Folk here today.

    • #4
  5. Mark Camp Member
    Mark Camp
    @MarkCamp

    philo (View Comment):

    A brief turn once again to American Individualism (Herbert Hoover):

    And from it all I emerge an individualist – an unashamed individualist. But let me say also that I am an American individualist. – Page 6

    No doubt, individualism run riot, with no tempering principle, would provide a long category of inequalities, of tyrannies, dominations, and injustices. America, however, has tempered the whole conception of individualism by the injection of a definite principle, and from this principle it follows that attempts at domination, whether in government or in the processes of industry and commerce, are under an insistent curb. If we would have the values of individualism, their stimulation to initiative, to the development of land and intellect, to the high development of thought and spirituality, they must be tempered with that firm and fixed ideal of American individualism – an equality of opportunity. If we would have these values we must soften its hardness and stimulate progress through that sense of service that lies in our people.

    Therefore, it is not the individualism of other countries for which I would speak, but the individualism of America. Our individualism differs from all others because it embraces these great ideals: that while we build our society upon the attainment of the individual, we shall safeguard to every individual an equality of opportunity to take that position in the community to which his intelligence, character, ability, and ambition entitle him; that we keep the social solution free from frozen strata of classes, that we shall stimulate effort of each individual to achievement; that through an enlarging sense of responsibility and understanding we shall assist him to this attainment; while he in turn must stand up to the emery wheel of competition. – Pages 6-8

    We in America have had too much experience of life to fool ourselves into pretending that all men are equal in ability, in character, in intelligence, and ambition, That was part of the clap-trap of the French Revolution. We have grown to understand that all we can hope to assure to the individual through government is liberty, justice, intellectual welfare, equality of opportunity, and stimulation to service.

    It is in maintenance of a society fluid to these human qualities that our individualism departs from the individualism of Europe. There can be no rise for the individual through the frozen strata of classes, or of castes, and no stratification can take place in a mass livened by the free stir of its particles. The guarding of our individualism against stratification insists not only in preserving in the social solution an equal opportunity for the able and ambitious to rise from the bottom; it also insists that the sons of the successful shall not by any mere right of birth or favor continue to occupy their fathers’ places of power against the rise of a new generation in process of coming up from the bottom. … Otherwise our American fields of opportunity would have been clogged with long generations inheriting their fathers’ privileges without their fathers’ capacity for service. – Pages 15-16

    I’ll stop there (I can cut and paste those all morning)…but the answer is clearly American Freedom (or Liberty). It ensures both.

    Hoover preferred equality to freedom, according to what I speculate are Seawriter’s particular definitions of those two dangerously ambiguous terms, which he does not specify.

    There is a common misconception that the New Deal, whose true purpose was to increase “equality” at the expense of “freedom”, was started by FDR.

    History reveals the fact it was started by the Hoover administration. One of incoming staffers (historians, please help me with the name and the exact quote) of the new Roosevelt administration confessed to being amazed to discover, upon studying the documents of the outgoing regime, that the majority of the FDR agenda had already been implemented by Hoover. 

    Coolidge and Harding, not Hoover and not Reagan, were the last non-RINO republican Republican Presidents of the US.

    • #5
  6. philo Member
    philo
    @philo

    Mark Camp (View Comment): Hoover preferred equality to freedom

    I’ll stick with Hoover in Hoover’s own words and the guidance that provides toward the last 11 words of my prior comment.

    • #6
  7. DaveSchmidt Coolidge
    DaveSchmidt
    @DaveSchmidt

    “The history of the 20th century is full of examples of countries that set out to redistribute wealth and ended up redistributing poverty.”  — Thomas Sowell 

    • #7
  8. Barfly Member
    Barfly
    @Barfly

    One way to look at what happened is that the society gave authority over hiring, firing, and advancement to the HR department. HR proceeded to advance itself and fire everyone who objected.

    • #8
  9. JimGoneWild Coolidge
    JimGoneWild
    @JimGoneWild

    Victims aren’t free. The gatekeepers own them.

    • #9
  10. Mark Camp Member
    Mark Camp
    @MarkCamp

    philo (View Comment):

    Mark Camp (View Comment): Hoover preferred equality to freedom

    I’ll stick with Hoover in Hoover’s own words and the guidance that provides toward the last 11 words of my prior comment.

    I believe that this could be a very productive debate…

    (a)…about Hoover, were you to persuade me to join your side at the end of the dialog.

    That’s quite possible.  You have studied Hoover himself.  I only peripherally and superficially, through the political and economic history of the Depression.  And that, admittedly from a liberal, minority, iconoclastic point of view. Those writers are naturally more impressed by the legacy of his actual radical political accomplishments—the creation of the main organs of the New Deal— and not very impressed by his admittedly very liberal-, Americanist-sounding language.)

    (b)…or (in the unlikely event that it finished with you coming over to my side), then about the history and method of Progressivism.  About what I have firmly and sincerely come to believe is its manipulation of the language itself, to twist Americans’ native benevolent emotions, sincerity, and Judeo-Christian morality into a self-sustaining campaign of self-enslavement under amoral, atheist socialist totalitarianism.

    • #10
  11. Jeff Petraska Member
    Jeff Petraska
    @JeffPetraska

    Carl Benjamin makes a fair point about liberalism’s promise of freedom and equality in this video, starting at the 40-minute mark:

    • #11
  12. Jim McConnell Member
    Jim McConnell
    @JimMcConnell

    Lately, there seems to be a growing tendency to equate “equality” with “equity.” Some think that equality of opportunity should result in “equity” of results. In Obama’s formulation, “You didn’t build that!”

    • #12
  13. Nathanael Ferguson Contributor
    Nathanael Ferguson
    @NathanaelFerguson

    I don’t think that Solzhenitsyn’s framing is correct here, at least not in the way it reads in English. The American concept of equality is well laid out in the Declaration: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

    In this view, we (Americans) are both free and equal. Not equal in outcomes, but equal in value, worth, human dignity, and the inherent rights we share as creations of the same Creator. In this formulation of the concept, everyone is equal regardless of whether everyone is free because the inherent qualities endowed by our Creator are not dependent on the political circumstances in which we find ourselves on Earth. 

    I probably shouldn’t quibble with an intellect such as his, but I would reframe Solzhenitsyn’s statement “Human beings are born with different capacities. If they are free, they are not equal will not have equal outcomes. And if they have equal outcomes are equal, they are not free.” This is probably what he meant anyway. He was anti-DEI before anti-DEI was cool. 

    • #13
  14. Nathanael Ferguson Contributor
    Nathanael Ferguson
    @NathanaelFerguson

    Well, shoot, I responded to the Solzhenitsyn quote before reading the rest of your post, @seawriter. I should have read the whole thing first and saved my breath. ;-)

    • #14
  15. tigerlily Member
    tigerlily
    @tigerlily

    Mark Camp (View Comment):

    philo (View Comment):

    A brief turn once again to American Individualism (Herbert Hoover):

    And from it all I emerge an individualist – an unashamed individualist. But let me say also that I am an American individualist. – Page 6

    No doubt, individualism run riot, with no tempering principle, would provide a long category of inequalities, of tyrannies, dominations, and injustices. America, however, has tempered the whole conception of individualism by the injection of a definite principle, and from this principle it follows that attempts at domination, whether in government or in the processes of industry and commerce, are under an insistent curb. If we would have the values of individualism, their stimulation to initiative, to the development of land and intellect, to the high development of thought and spirituality, they must be tempered with that firm and fixed ideal of American individualism – an equality of opportunity. If we would have these values we must soften its hardness and stimulate progress through that sense of service that lies in our people.

    Therefore, it is not the individualism of other countries for which I would speak, but the individualism of America. Our individualism differs from all others because it embraces these great ideals: that while we build our society upon the attainment of the individual, we shall safeguard to every individual an equality of opportunity to take that position in the community to which his intelligence, character, ability, and ambition entitle him; that we keep the social solution free from frozen strata of classes, that we shall stimulate effort of each individual to achievement; that through an enlarging sense of responsibility and understanding we shall assist him to this attainment; while he in turn must stand up to the emery wheel of competition. – Pages 6-8

    We in America have had too much experience of life to fool ourselves into pretending that all men are equal in ability, in character, in intelligence, and ambition, That was part of the clap-trap of the French Revolution. We have grown to understand that all we can hope to assure to the individual through government is liberty, justice, intellectual welfare, equality of opportunity, and stimulation to service.

    It is in maintenance of a society fluid to these human qualities that our individualism departs from the individualism of Europe. There can be no rise for the individual through the frozen strata of classes, or of castes, and no stratification can take place in a mass livened by the free stir of its particles. The guarding of our individualism against stratification insists not only in preserving in the social solution an equal opportunity for the able and ambitious to rise from the bottom; it also insists that the sons of the successful shall not by any mere right of birth or favor continue to occupy their fathers’ places of power against the rise of a new generation in process of coming up from the bottom. … Otherwise our American fields of opportunity would have been clogged with long generations inheriting their fathers’ privileges without their fathers’ capacity for service. – Pages 15-16

    I’ll stop there (I can cut and paste those all morning)…but the answer is clearly American Freedom (or Liberty). It ensures both.

    Hoover preferred equality to freedom, according to what I speculate are Seawriter’s particular definitions of those two dangerously ambiguous terms, which he does not specify.

    There is a common misconception that the New Deal, whose true purpose was to increase “equality” at the expense of “freedom”, was started by FDR.

    History reveals the fact it was started by the Hoover administration. One of incoming staffers (historians, please help me with the name and the exact quote) of the new Roosevelt administration confessed to being amazed to discover, upon studying the documents of the outgoing regime, that the majority of the FDR agenda had already been implemented by Hoover.

    Coolidge and Harding, not Hoover and not Reagan, were the last non-RINO republican Republican Presidents of the US.

    I believe the economist in the Roosevelt administration who acknowledged that many of the programs of the New Deal came from the Hoover administration was Rexford Tugwell

    • #15
  16. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    There is a difference between wanting equality and wanting greater equality.   (Not to mention the various flavors of equality.)

    • #16
  17. Nanocelt TheContrarian Member
    Nanocelt TheContrarian
    @NanoceltTheContrarian

    Mark Camp (View Comment):

    philo (View Comment):

    A brief turn once again to American Individualism (Herbert Hoover):

    And from it all I emerge an individualist – an unashamed individualist. But let me say also that I am an American individualist. – Page 6

    No doubt, individualism run riot, with no tempering principle, would provide a long category of inequalities, of tyrannies, dominations, and injustices. America, however, has tempered the whole conception of individualism by the injection of a definite principle, and from this principle it follows that attempts at domination, whether in government or in the processes of industry and commerce, are under an insistent curb. If we would have the values of individualism, their stimulation to initiative, to the development of land and intellect, to the high development of thought and spirituality, they must be tempered with that firm and fixed ideal of American individualism – an equality of opportunity. If we would have these values we must soften its hardness and stimulate progress through that sense of service that lies in our people.

    Therefore, it is not the individualism of other countries for which I would speak, but the individualism of America. Our individualism differs from all others because it embraces these great ideals: that while we build our society upon the attainment of the individual, we shall safeguard to every individual an equality of opportunity to take that position in the community to which his intelligence, character, ability, and ambition entitle him; that we keep the social solution free from frozen strata of classes, that we shall stimulate effort of each individual to achievement; that through an enlarging sense of responsibility and understanding we shall assist him to this attainment; while he in turn must stand up to the emery wheel of competition. – Pages 6-8

    We in America have had too much experience of life to fool ourselves into pretending that all men are equal in ability, in character, in intelligence, and ambition, That was part of the clap-trap of the French Revolution. We have grown to understand that all we can hope to assure to the individual through government is liberty, justice, intellectual welfare, equality of opportunity, and stimulation to service.

    It is in maintenance of a society fluid to these human qualities that our individualism departs from the individualism of Europe. There can be no rise for the individual through the frozen strata of classes, or of castes, and no stratification can take place in a mass livened by the free stir of its particles. The guarding of our individualism against stratification insists not only in preserving in the social solution an equal opportunity for the able and ambitious to rise from the bottom; it also insists that the sons of the successful shall not by any mere right of birth or favor continue to occupy their fathers’ places of power against the rise of a new generation in process of coming up from the bottom. … Otherwise our American fields of opportunity would have been clogged with long generations inheriting their fathers’ privileges without their fathers’ capacity for service. – Pages 15-16

    I’ll stop there (I can cut and paste those all morning)…but the answer is clearly American Freedom (or Liberty). It ensures both.

    Hoover preferred equality to freedom, according to what I speculate are Seawriter’s particular definitions of those two dangerously ambiguous terms, which he does not specify.

    There is a common misconception that the New Deal, whose true purpose was to increase “equality” at the expense of “freedom”, was started by FDR.

    History reveals the fact it was started by the Hoover administration. One of incoming staffers (historians, please help me with the name and the exact quote) of the new Roosevelt administration confessed to being amazed to discover, upon studying the documents of the outgoing regime, that the majority of the FDR agenda had already been implemented by Hoover.

    Coolidge and Harding, not Hoover and not Reagan, were the last non-RINO republican Republican Presidents of the US.

    Not exactly. Coolidge was a Progressive. He signed the 1924 immigration law that was based on Eugenics ideas, and Eugenics was the foremost Progressive project of the Progressive era and beyond, influencing our society still and gaining steam in our new era of Progressive madness.

    • #17
  18. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    tigerlily (View Comment):

    Mark Camp (View Comment):

    philo (View Comment):

    A brief turn once again to American Individualism (Herbert Hoover):

    And from it all I emerge an individualist – an unashamed individualist. But let me say also that I am an American individualist. – Page 6

    No doubt, individualism run riot, with no tempering principle, would provide a long category of inequalities, of tyrannies, dominations, and injustices. America, however, has tempered the whole conception of individualism by the injection of a definite principle, and from this principle it follows that attempts at domination, whether in government or in the processes of industry and commerce, are under an insistent curb. If we would have the values of individualism, their stimulation to initiative, to the development of land and intellect, to the high development of thought and spirituality, they must be tempered with that firm and fixed ideal of American individualism – an equality of opportunity. If we would have these values we must soften its hardness and stimulate progress through that sense of service that lies in our people.

    Therefore, it is not the individualism of other countries for which I would speak, but the individualism of America. Our individualism differs from all others because it embraces these great ideals: that while we build our society upon the attainment of the individual, we shall safeguard to every individual an equality of opportunity to take that position in the community to which his intelligence, character, ability, and ambition entitle him; that we keep the social solution free from frozen strata of classes, that we shall stimulate effort of each individual to achievement; that through an enlarging sense of responsibility and understanding we shall assist him to this attainment; while he in turn must stand up to the emery wheel of competition. – Pages 6-8

    We in America have had too much experience of life to fool ourselves into pretending that all men are equal in ability, in character, in intelligence, and ambition, That was part of the clap-trap of the French Revolution. We have grown to understand that all we can hope to assure to the individual through government is liberty, justice, intellectual welfare, equality of opportunity, and stimulation to service.

    It is in maintenance of a society fluid to these human qualities that our individualism departs from the individualism of Europe. There can be no rise for the individual through the frozen strata of classes, or of castes, and no stratification can take place in a mass livened by the free stir of its particles. The guarding of our individualism against stratification insists not only in preserving in the social solution an equal opportunity for the able and ambitious to rise from the bottom; it also insists that the sons of the successful shall not by any mere right of birth or favor continue to occupy their fathers’ places of power against the rise of a new generation in process of coming up from the bottom. … Otherwise our American fields of opportunity would have been clogged with long generations inheriting their fathers’ privileges without their fathers’ capacity for service. – Pages 15-16

    I’ll stop there (I can cut and paste those all morning)…but the answer is clearly American Freedom (or Liberty). It ensures both.

    Hoover preferred equality to freedom, according to what I speculate are Seawriter’s particular definitions of those two dangerously ambiguous terms, which he does not specify.

    There is a common misconception that the New Deal, whose true purpose was to increase “equality” at the expense of “freedom”, was started by FDR.

    History reveals the fact it was started by the Hoover administration. One of incoming staffers (historians, please help me with the name and the exact quote) of the new Roosevelt administration confessed to being amazed to discover, upon studying the documents of the outgoing regime, that the majority of the FDR agenda had already been implemented by Hoover.

    Coolidge and Harding, not Hoover and not Reagan, were the last non-RINO republican Republican Presidents of the US.

    I believe the economist in the Roosevelt administration who acknowledged that many of the programs of the New Deal came from the Hoover administration was Rexford Tugwell.

    The Hoover administration followed the pronouncements of the experts that Something Must Be Done. They Did Something. The FDR administration came along and turned all the dials to eleven. 

    • #18
  19. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Percival (View Comment):
    The Hoover administration followed the pronouncements of the experts that Something Must Be Done. They Did Something. The FDR administration came along and turned all the dials to eleven.

    …and blamed Hoover for doing nothing. 

    • #19
  20. Susan Quinn Member
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Since achieving equality for everyone is impossible, it is a silly goal to pursue. As long as they don’t turn us into robots, we are unequal in many ways. Sometimes I am greater than equal because I have certain skills; sometimes a person surpasses me with their opportunities. Achieving equality has no meaning for me.

    On the other hand, freedom is supreme. Every time we lose some of our freedom, even when we think we are giving up some freedom for a greater cause, it is a negative. Give me freedom!

    • #20
  21. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Percival (View Comment):
    The Hoover administration followed the pronouncements of the experts that Something Must Be Done. They Did Something. The FDR administration came along and turned all the dials to eleven.

    …and blamed Hoover for doing nothing.

    Well, he couldn’t blame Hoover for doing what he himself was doing, particularly when it didn’t work.

    • #21
  22. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Percival (View Comment):

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Percival (View Comment):
    The Hoover administration followed the pronouncements of the experts that Something Must Be Done. They Did Something. The FDR administration came along and turned all the dials to eleven.

    …and blamed Hoover for doing nothing.

    Well, he couldn’t blame Hoover for doing what he himself was doing, particularly when it didn’t work.

    My memories of this are not very specific, but in the 60s the Democrat national conventions would still conduct a 2-minute hate (or its equivalent) of Hoover at least once during the convention.  They still honored Jefferson and Jackson in those days, too.  

    • #22
  23. Barfly Member
    Barfly
    @Barfly

    Nathanael Ferguson (View Comment):

    Well, shoot, I responded to the Solzhenitsyn quote before reading the rest of your post, @ seawriter. I should have read the whole thing first and saved my breath. ;-)

    I do that all the time. 

    • #23
  24. kedavis Coolidge
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Since achieving equality for everyone is impossible, it is a silly goal to pursue. As long as they don’t turn us into robots, we are unequal in many ways. Sometimes I am greater than equal because I have certain skills; sometimes a person surpasses me with their opportunities. Achieving equality has no meaning for me.

    On the other hand, freedom is supreme. Every time we lose some of our freedom, even when we think we are giving up some freedom for a greater cause, it is a negative. Give me freedom!

    Of course, robots are not all equal either.

     

    • #24
  25. Stina Inactive
    Stina
    @CM

    Constitutional equality was always limited to two things:

    1) All endowed by our creator with inalienable rights, and

    2) Equality before the law.

    That is it. And we can have those two things alongside appropriate freedom.

    Our freedom was ostensibly intended to be free to live rightly – provide for self and loved ones freely and worship God according to one’s conscience.

    Libertinism was clearly not within the purview of “freedom” given the myriad laws existent in early America.

    • #25
  26. Mark Camp Member
    Mark Camp
    @MarkCamp

    Stina (View Comment):

    Constitutional equality was always limited to two things:

    1) All endowed by our creator with inalienable rights, and

    2) Equality before the law.

    That is it. And we can have those two things alongside appropriate freedom.

    Our freedom was ostensibly intended to be free to live rightly – provide for self and loved ones freely and worship God according to one’s conscience.

    Libertinism was clearly not within the purview of “freedom” given the myriad laws existent in early America.

    Brava, Brava, Brava!

    • #26
  27. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Stina (View Comment):

    Constitutional equality was always limited to two things:

    1) All endowed by our creator with inalienable rights, and

    2) Equality before the law.

    Maybe.  But the writers of the Constitution were also concerned about a rough equality being necessary for the survival of the new Republic.  None of them had any illusions that absolute material equality was achievable or desirable, though.

    • #27
  28. Mark Camp Member
    Mark Camp
    @MarkCamp

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    But the writers of the Constitution were also concerned about a rough equality being necessary for the survival of the new Republic.

    No doubt they were, as individuals.

    But I don’t see anyplace in the Constitution where they made that a concern of the Federal Government.  Do you?

    • #28
  29. TBA, sometimes known as 'Teebs'. Coolidge
    TBA, sometimes known as 'Teebs'.
    @RobtGilsdorf

    Mark Camp (View Comment):

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    But the writers of the Constitution were also concerned about a rough equality being necessary for the survival of the new Republic.

    No doubt they were, as individuals.

    But I don’t see anyplace in the Constitution where they made that a concern of the Federal Government. Do you?

    Well, there is the general welfare clause which is a loophole you could drive an F-15 through. 

    • #29
  30. Mark Camp Member
    Mark Camp
    @MarkCamp

    TBA, sometimes known as ‘Teebs… (View Comment):

    Mark Camp (View Comment):

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    But the writers of the Constitution were also concerned about a rough equality being necessary for the survival of the new Republic.

    No doubt they were, as individuals.

    But I don’t see anyplace in the Constitution where they made that a concern of the Federal Government. Do you?

    Well, there is the general welfare clause which is a loophole you could drive an F-15 through.

    Madison wrote it; he said it wasn’t intended as a loophole, but as an introductory phrase to the text that followed immediately, amplifying rather than contradicting the limited role of the Federal Government he specified.

    Either

    (a) he was lying or

    (b) he truly never intended it that way, and it was made into a loophole by politicians with nefarious motives soon after ratification.

    I am much more inclined to believe (b) than (a).

    Partly that’s because of his character. He was the most scholarly intellectual on the liberal side with Jefferson, and against the statist side with Hamilton. And partly because of what I know of his character and that of Hamilton, based on reading a biography of each.

    • #30
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