Frank Maguire
Answering a rhetorical question
By Frank Maguire
August 30, 2010

The following is response to a dear friend of mine who lives in Fairview, OR and who sent me a question which I accepted as rhetorical, his purpose being to remind me and others of those threats to which we as citizens should pay very close attention. My friend closed with "I wish everyone could read this."

I decided to write my response and ask North West Connection to print Jefferson's cautions and my answer to "How Did Jefferson Know?" On the principle of "age before beauty," let's start with Jefferson.

How Did Jefferson Know?

The following axioms by Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826) American statesman, one of the authors of the Declaration of Independence, 3rd president of the United States (1801-1809) are cautions about how a people can lose their liberty and their nation.

When we get piled upon one another in large cities, as in Europe, we shall become as corrupt as Europe.

The Republic will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not.

It is incumbent on every generation to pay its own debts as it goes. A principle which if acted on would save one-half the wars of the world.

I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them.

My reading of history convinces me that most bad government results from too much government.

No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms. The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government.

The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.

To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical.

Thomas Jefferson

"Those in the West who expect us to give up socialism will be disappointed....I hold a firm trust in socialist democracy and socialist humanism." Mikail Gorbachev, Time magazine's Man of the Decade of the 1980s, "I am an optimist," Time, June 4, 1990 (pg. 31)

Remember the axiom "The more things change, the more they remain the same?" It is attributable to Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr (1908–1990). Karr's actual words were: 'plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose' (Les Guêpes).

Solomon, the Wise, put it this way: Ecclesiastes 1:9 (New International Version) 9 "What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun."

Then there is the proverb of the Irish/English parliamentarian Edmund Burke which is faithful to Solomon's wisdom: "Those who don't know history are destined to repeat it."

Jefferson knew because he knew Scripture well. He wrote in America's exalted mission statement, the Declaration of Independence, of Man's intrinsic equality, providing all with the unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness under Creator God. Jefferson was also very familiar with the sagacious and forthright political philosophy of Edmund Burke (born January 12, 1729 in Dublin, died July 9, 1797).

To the contrary, the "Progressives" are Darwinians and believe that men, and their systems, are progressively evolving for the better. They are dialectical-materialists and exponents of meliorism, the doctrine that claims that the past can be "repaired" and the world can be improved by human action alone with total disregard for such superstitions as religion.

Many Progressives profess to be "Christian" but they are merely associated with a form of religiosity that is grounded in the philosophies of men but does not hold to the validity of Scripture; thus, they deny the words of Jesus who taught that his Father's Word is true in its entirety. Progressives when they do polemicize on Scriptural ethics and values reduce the Word to a religious-humanist manifesto. Their comprehension of Scripture is that of the proof-texting sojourner — a temporary resident, unfamiliar with the Territory.

Barack Hussein Obama is a perfect paradigm of the Progressive sojourner. The current polls of the American citizenry indicate that close to 30% of the populace believes that Obama is a Muslim. About 43% take his word for it, that he is a Christian. What the remaining 20-plus % think we are not told. Perhaps they don't care one way or the other.

But everyone should expect that when someone confesses a faith, he or she should have some idea about the essential teachings of that faith. Obama volunteered the information "I have always been a Christian." Immediately when I heard this I asked myself where he learned this impossible idea.

Renowned Christian apologist Ravi Zacharias makes the above reality very clear in his valuable book Jesus Among Other Gods. In his chapter "When God is Silent," Zacharias writes, "How is the Christian faith unique? First is the issue of conversion. Jesus' message reveals that every individual, whether Jew or Greek or Roman or from any civilization, comes to know God not by virtue of birth, but by a conscious choice to let Him have His rule in his or her individual life. Jesus' kingdom is not of this world, neither is our inheritance in His kingdom a world into which we enter by birth...nobody is born a Christian." Thus, contrary to Obama's declaration of faith, no one has "always been a Christian."

In his comprehensive book Understanding the Times, David A. Noebel provides a contrast between the Progressivist percepción del mundo and that which was held by those who founded the American republic.

"There are many similarities between Marxist/Leninist historical materialism and the Secular Humanist interpretation of history. Both Marxists and Humanists view history from an evolutionary perspective, and, therefore, both believe Mankind's history will always progress, just as the development of life constantly progresses. Consequently, both worldviews perceive the historical process as guaranteeing the redemption of Mankind through the future establishment of some kind of heaven on earth.

"Instead of Jesus Christ establishing the Kingdom of God on earth, both Marxists and Humanists insist that evolving Man — the new, Socialist (i.e., Progressive) Man — will usher in the Kingdom of Man."

Jefferson knew what to expect from the machinations of ambitious, envious, blasphemous, and greedy Mankind. He knew because he was a man. He knew how imperfect-man is capable of rationalization and self-justification. He knew how man enslaves man and explains the sin of enslaving away.

Everything Jefferson said and wrote was said and written many times before; he skillfully and beautifully paraphrased the wisdom of his antecedents.

I close with a quote from Edmund Burke which recalls the lessons of human history and presages that which is inevitable unless Man acknowledges his mortal limitations and the sovereignty of Creator God.

"Men are qualified for civil liberty in exact proportion to their disposition to put moral chains upon their own appetites, — in proportion as their love to justice is above their rapacity, — in proportion as their soundness and sobriety of understanding is above their vanity and presumption, — in proportion as they are more disposed to listen to the counsels of the wise and good, in preference to the flattery of knaves. Society cannot exist, unless a controlling power upon will and appetite be placed somewhere; and the less of it there is within, the more there must be without. It is ordained in the eternal constitution of things, that men of intemperate minds cannot be free. Their passions forge their fetters." Letter to a Member of the National Assembly (1791)

© Frank Maguire


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Frank Maguire

(Frank Maguire passed away on May 19, 2021. His obituary can be read here.

Frank Maguire was born in Dorchester, MA, 1938, attended schools in Massachusetts, California, and Arizona, where he completed degrees in music and English writing/Journalism. Frank has been married to Helen Isabel Maguire Estevez of Culver City, California, since 1957. They have six children, 14 grandchildren, and 17 great-grandchildren.


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