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Sunday, July 09, 2006


 

Marxist theory: Permanent Revolution


Thoughts on the founding fathers, from a Los Angeles Times op-ed:
Someone has to say it or we are never going to get out of this rut: I am sick and tired of the founding fathers and all their intents.

The real American question of our times is how our country in a little over 200 years sank from the great hope to the most backward democracy in the West. The United States offers the worst health care program, one of the worst public school systems and the worst benefits for workers. The margin between rich and poor has been growing precipitously while it has been decreasing in Europe.

Among the great democracies, we use military might less cautiously, show less respect for international law and are the stumbling block in international environmental cooperation. Few informed people look to the United States anymore for progressive ideas.

We ought to do something. Instead, we keep worrying about the vision of a bunch of sexist, slave-owning 18th-century white men in wigs and breeches.
...
The founding fathers, unlike the Americans of today, understood their own shortcomings. Thomas Jefferson warned against a slavish worship of their work, which he referred to as "sanctimonious reverence" for the Constitution. Jefferson believed in the ability of humans to grow wiser, of humankind to make progress, and he believed that the Constitution should be rewritten in every generation.

"Laws and institutions must go hand in hand with the progress of the human mind," Jefferson wrote in 1816. "As that becomes more developed, more enlightened, as new discoveries are made, new truths discovered and manners and opinions change, with the change of circumstance, institutions must advance also to keep pace with the times. We might as well require a man to wear still the coat which fitted him when a boy as civilized society to remain ever under the regimen of their barbarous ancestors."


Why stop here? There's more...

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