Mandeville, LA – Exclusive Transcript – Let’s go to the Dude Maker Hotline and say hello to author of Liberty, the God That Failed, Christopher Ferrara. “When that idea [democracy] is introduced, you have coming into the political structure of a society this whole notion of representation, that government is a compact between the people and the government as established through their representatives. The great irony of representation is that over time it swallows up everything and destroys true liberty. If anybody doubts that, let me ask a simple question: How has taxation with representation worked out for us?” Check out today’s transcript for the rest…
Begin Mike Church Show Transcript
Mike: Let’s go to the Dude Maker Hotline and say hello to author of Liberty, the God That Failed, Christopher Ferrara. Hello, Chris, how are you today?
Christopher Ferrara: Good morning, Mike. Thanks for having me on.
Mike: You’re very welcome. We were going to talk about a couple things. I’m sure you’re familiar with the proclamation that I just read. What do you think the chances of having something like that read aloud in public today are?
Mike: Even more embarrassingly, what do you think the chances are, even if it’s not read publicly, of people hearing about it being read and going: Yeah, that’s what we ought to do?
Ferrara: Well, I think the reason it’s zero — this is why what you’re doing on your show is courageous. The reason it’s zero, the prospect of a similar proclamation today, is that the internal logic of certain principles that the founding has worked itself out so that now we’re seeing the final consequences. We saw it early on with Jefferson refusing to invoke national days of prayer, fasting and repentance, because he felt that would violate the separation of church and state that had been established with the constitutional regime. James Madison was of like mind, as we see in his detached memoranda. He thought that these types of observances were contrary to the nature of this new vehicle that they had set up with the American Revolution.
Now we’re witnessing the outcome of what I argue in the book is the creation of the world’s first secular State. That wasn’t obvious at the beginning. The typical American was a rather devout Protestant of one kind or another. Catholics were a tiny minority at that time. People just didn’t see this coming but others did. I think we’ve discussed this on previous episodes of the show. John Adams in particular was very much repentant. I his correspondence with Benjamin Rush, he admits that what they had done had provoked disturbances all over the once-Christian West. He himself felt personally responsible for the French Revolution because of what the American revolutionaries had done.
I’m not talking about subjective intentions. I’m not judging them. I’m not saying they’re burning in hell or anything of the sort. I’m just saying that what we have to understand is that the American Revolution was not, as the mythology tells us, a conservative event but something new and radical. The American revolutionaries, at least those in the first rank, understood it as such.
Mike: I would say that at least for some like Patrick Henry and John Dickinson when he finally grudgingly went along with it, to them it was: Okay, I’m with you guys to roll the clock back and to restore the unwritten English constitution of 1688 and the things that came out of that Glorious Revolution, as they called it. In other words, kind of restore the way it was that we existed prior to all these taxes and acts and hostilities and all that. There were some conservative voices, but the radicals, or the ones that saw another day — I was reading this just the other day in researching my upcoming Fourth of July special on the lost original copy of the Declaration. I read a letter that Adams wrote to his wife, Abigail, and the language that he used about the Declaration is shocking: We have proclaimed to the entire peoples of the United Colonies, “We have proclaimed to.” I was reading that going: Where’s Ferrara at when I need him?
Ferrara: You’ve touched on something that’s fundamental, and that is what I’m talking about. This was a new conception. You can’t really understand the American Revolution unless you look beyond certain legitimate grievances they might have had, which could have been addressed and were addressed by the king. For example, the king did repeal the Townshend Acts except for the tea tax, and he repealed the Stamp Act. Let me read you this paragraph that I came across, which is quoted in the book, from LewRockwell.com, talking about George III in anticipation of the upcoming Fourth of July. He talks about how George, in response to the uprisings in the colonies, repealed the Stamp Act, repealed the Townshend Acts, except for this trivial tea tax. Then he said this, and this is on LewRockwell.com, a libertarian website. The author writes:
“Tyrants!? I just wish to God that our Congresses and Presidents were so responsive to the American people’s wishes…If you plan to spend the Fourth celebrating the liberty you haven’t got, by all means go ahead. Me? I’m going to drink a loyal toast to one of the most benevolent rulers this suffering country ever had, a small-government man and a pillar of constitutional rectitude compared to despotic megalomaniacs and reckless warmongers like Woodrow Wilson, Franklin Roosevelt, LBJ, Clinton, and George W. Bush. His Majesty, God bless him!”
That’s a bit ironic. The point is well made. The point is this, when these radicals who led the revolution introduced the idea that “we” speak for the people and that “we” are the representatives of the people — Madison explicitly says this in Federalist 41, that a small group of patriotic citizens can lead the people toward their object. When that idea is introduced, you have coming into the political structure of a society this whole notion of representation, that government is a compact between the people and the government as established through their representatives. The great irony of representation is that over time it swallows up everything and destroys true liberty. If anybody doubts that, let me ask a simple question: How has taxation with representation worked out for us?
Mike: You can get the book, Liberty, the God That Failed autographed by Chris at the Founders Tradin’ Post at MikeChurch.com or the garden variety at Amazon.com and other great book sellers. One of the things I had written to you about the other day was Mrs. Clinton’s fondness now for cavorting about the countryside and promoting her love of LGBT, or if she’s on television LGBTV, and all the wonderful things that humanity is going to gain out of this latest revolution — and that’s what it is — in the concept of marriage or in the concept of familial relations. We have this front and center today with Hillary being asked on NPR last week why she changed her mind. Of course, she denied that she’d changed her mind. She’d always been amenable to this. Would you think that in 1776, when the revolution got kicked off, that if anyone had said your revolution is going to result in your definition of even things that have pretty much been static for 8,000 or 9,000 years is also now going to change?
Ferrara: I say in the book that Locke, whose principles are instrumental to the founding, would not recognize the world that exists today and he would recoil in horror at the very sight of what is going on. As others have said, and as I echo in the book, principles have their consequences. Someone may not have a subjective intention to subvert the moral order and destroy a belief in anything that is good and holy by introducing certain principles, but the operation of those principles is inevitable. Some of the anti-federalists saw it, and, as I mentioned a moment ago, John Adams saw it. When you introduce the idea that government is just a compact that people erect with their representatives and that the majority rules and that 50 percent plus one must dominate 50 percent minus one in any matter whatsoever, including morality, even if you have the best of intentions, even if you’re a devout Protestant in 1776, once you sign onto that idea, you’ve unleashed the tyranny of democracy. [/private]
This is what the federalists supposedly had contrived to prevent with the so-called separation of powers. But as Patrick Henry said — he’s one of the few heroes in my book — the separation of powers is just a separation between the buildings of the government. We’re going to have a unified, all-encompassing government. The separation you’re talking about is ultimately going to be meaningless. Driving the whole ensemble of these new institutions is majority rule. This is what Hillary is pandering to in connection with the Fourth Estate, which is administering the tyranny of public opinion, which is another element of the modern nation-state, which is a mass democracy.
You have to contend not only with the government but with the Fourth Estate and its tyrannical condemnation of heresy against civic religion. The civic religion has one dogma, tolerance, of everything, of course, except Christianity.
End Mike Church Show Transcript