(the following reading of my article by an unnamed individual was delivered as a speech at the Seattle Tea Party)
"Our political problem now is “Can we, as a nation, continue together permanently—forever—half slave, and half free?" Abraham Lincoln, 1855
Three years later in 1858, Lincoln slightly reformulated this question with a view of what the end result in America must be, during his House Divided speech.
"A house divided against itself cannot stand." I believe this government cannot endure, permanently, half slave and half free. I do not expect the Union to be dissolved — I do not expect the house to fall — but I do expect it will cease to be divided. It will become all one thing or all the other. "
The idea Lincoln put forward here, was similar to the ideas that Eisenhower, Kennedy, Nixon and Reagan would put forward during the Cold War. That states of free men and slaves could not co-exist for long. Sooner or later either the free men will become slaves, or the slaves will become free.
In the Communist era that meant that either free countries would become Communist, or Communist countries would become free. So too with Islam, the same balance exists. Either free nations will become Muslim, or Muslim nations will become free. We can see the consequences of that playing out now in Europe, where nations of free men are becoming slaves. In reverse we see the possibility in Iraq of slaves becoming free men.
Lincoln however was not speaking globally but locally-- and it is the local that concerns us now.
Today 150 years later America is once again half-slave and half-free. Slavery no longer means cotton plantations and slave markets. Instead slavery today exists in a more insidious form of bureaucracies and social service agencies. Pages after pages of regulations and forms to fill out. Advisory committees that become authorities and taxation that quickly mutates into confiscation.
The bottom line though is very clear. Slavery represents a fairly simple social contract that says, "Give me your freedom and I will see that you're taken care of." The simplest way to describe modern slavery in the United States today is with another "S" word. Socialism.
Socialism is modern slavery. It is slavery disguised by high minded ideals, but so was the original slavery. American Liberals, like the Slaveholders of the Pre-Civil War era, presume that minorities are unfit to take care of themselves without someone to take care of them and tell them what to do and how to live. That of course is why socialism's thrust is so focused on minorities in the first place. But it isn't limited to minorities.
Those deprived of their labor through taxation are helping to underfund the Socialist Masters, to create their jobs, maintain their power and expand their organizations. And since slaveholding systems have no real room for anyone who isn't a Master or a Slave, anyone trying to remain independent, particularly small businessmen will be squeezed out, until they're in one category or the other.
Like Slavery, Socialism needs to expand into free states. Like a Ponzi Scheme, Socialism constantly needs new territories and people in order to fund its own operations, which are always taking place at a loss.
The following quote nicely sums up the state of affairs;
"...At the present rate, as I see it, by the year 2000 everybody is either going to be on welfare or administering it. I see no middle ground at all. Just consider the statistics."
Unit Supervisor, NYC Department of Welfare, 1964
In its own way this quote is every bit as powerful as Lincoln's. A statement of manifest destiny for social services to expand from ocean to ocean, to include everybody in the system. Just as Slaveholding systems devalue free labor, forcing everyone into the Master or Slave category.... Socialism also devalues free labor, forcing everyone to either work in the government, or work for the government.
Lincoln's response to this expansionism was to point out that if it went on, America would no longer be half-slave and half-free. It would be either all free as the result of abolishing slavery-- or it would be all slave because slavery had spread to every state in the union.
We are facing the same situation today. To reformulate Lincoln's words, "American cannot continue as a nation, half-socialist and half-free. Either one will fall or the other. Either all the states and every state and city, town and village will become socialist. Or all will become free."
A Slaveholding economy or a Socialist economy cannot co-exist for long with a free system. They must naturally consume and expand to survive. And Socialism, the modern day slavery, is quickly expanding across America. And we cannot long survive as a mix of free states and slave states.
Obama's election is a decisive wake up call in that regard. A statement that America is to be a slave nation, its population taxed into poverty, its corporations turned into corrupt government fiefdoms, its freedoms tightly regulated and curtailed. The contest for the future depends on making clear the choice between Freedom and Slavery, between Individualism and Socialism. The fate of America and the future depends on it.
We can either have a nation of free men, or a slaveholding nanny state. We cannot have both. The time when we could choose is quickly passing, and the chains and collars are nearing our throats.
An America of slaves may carry the name America, but it will no longer be the same nation. Instead it will be American In Name Only. A country where the Constitution is nothing more than a piece of paper, where history is bunk, rights are imaginary and everyone is constantly arguing over which of them is more mistreated. And worst of all, we're nearly there now.
The media's propaganda barrage is meant to get the populace happy about being slaves. Slavery with a smile, or Socialism with a Human Face, as was the old Soviet slogan. And it will be slavery indeed, whether it's Slavery in the name of the environment, Slavery in the name of social justice, Slavery in the name of the Unions, Slavery in the name of the Bureaucracy. It doesn't really matter because slavery by any name is still slavery.
That is our political problem. That is the great question of our time. Strip away all the details, the personalities and the vanities-- and this overriding question remains. It is one that the Democratic party has worked hard to make sure no one asks or even hears, because the chains they put on us are not meant to look like chains.
In 2010 and 2012, the battle will be joined and the ultimate question must be this one, "Are we to be a nation of slaves governed by masters, or a nation of free men and women? Are we a nation of slaves or free citizens? Do we need to be taken care of, told what to do all the time, deprived of the rightful benefits of our work and our freedoms-- or are we best suited to care for ourselves and our families, employ our money and our Constitutional rights as we see fit ?"
That is what it will all come down to. If we can communicate that question to enough people, set it as the agenda for the party and the core slogan that defines our values-- we can win. And set America on a path to being a free nation again. If we lose, the chains of slavery are already forged and waiting for us.