Month: February 2013

Govt 101 – Federalism

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Definitions –

GOVERNMENT – direction …, regulation …, control …, restraint ….

[Webster 1828 (my paraphrase)]

FEDERAL, a. […]

1. Pertaining to a league or contract; derived from an agreement or covenant between parties, particularly between nations.

The Romans, contrary to federal right, compelled them to part with Sardinia. Grew.

2. Consisting in a compact between parties, particularly and chiefly between states or nations; founded on alliance by contract or mutual agreement; as a federal government, such as that of the United States.

3. Friendly to the constitution of the United States. [See the Noun.]

FEDERAL, FEDERALIST, n. An appellation in America, given to the friends of the constitution of the United States, at its formation and adoption, and to the political party which favored the administration of President Washington.

FEDERARY, FEDARY, n. A partner; a confederate; an accomplice. [Not used.] Shakespeare.

FEDERATE, a. […] Leagued; united by compact, as sovereignties, states or nations; joined in confederacy; as federate nations or powers.

FEDERATION, n. The act of uniting in a league.

2. A league; a confederacy.

[Webster 1828]

Back to basics –

1. A guy and a gal get together and make a baby. That is a “family”, the “building block” of every society.

2. Several families federate to share the tasks of life. That is a tribe. Ultimately the tribe grows to become a society.

3. Every society develops a dominant concept of a higher power (a god, or God).

4. That vertical concept will always determine the horizontal concept of relations with other families and societies.

· The vertical relationship between families and God is called “church”.

· The horizontal relationship between families and families is called “state”.

· It is a Law of Nature all through human history – A society’s corporate concept of the vertical relationship will ALWAYS determine its concept of horizontal relationship. NEVER the other way around!

Our founding fathers were wary of an all-powerful central government. The recognized and honored the individuality of America’s various societies. They chose a federal system of government. It is difficult to be a citizen of the “United States of America” without ALSO being a citizen of one of the states. We have a vertical relationship, together with our fellow citizens, to the USA. At the same time, we have a horizontal relationship with citizens of the other states.

Master, which is the great commandment in the law?

Jesus said unto him, “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. [vertical] This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it – Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. [horizontal] On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.

[Matthew 22:36-40]

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Govt 101 – Democracy

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Definitions –

GOVERNMENT – direction …, regulation …, control …, restraint ….

[Webster 1828 (my paraphrase)]

DEMOC̵RACY, n. […] Government by the people; a form of government, in which the supreme power is lodged in the hands of the people collectively, or in which the people exercise the powers of legislation. Such was the government of Athens.

[Webster 1828]

When democracy works –

X-ville is a 50 family village in colonial Massachusetts. The good folks of this small community meet monthly in their meeting house (the church is the community’s largest room) to do the community business. We’ll call it a “town meeting”. Majority rules.

The well is dry. They must tax themselves to dig a new well. They vote for a $50/family tax. Everyone will be drinking from the well.

The widow Jones and her 16 kids (You’d think she would have died before the husband!) is already having a hard time clothing and feeding her family. These were pre “government-welfare” days. The new $50 assessment will hit her hard.

X-ville folks have good character. Without anyone saying anything, her share gets taken care of. BUT – Suppose the folks lack that good character and the widow Jones has to go without food and shoes for her kids so they can drink. — Every time the townsfolk walk past her house they and their consciences see the results of their majority vote. They don’t enjoy that, and the problem gets corrected.

My point – In a small community, the majority has to live with the results of their majority vote. Conscience makes it a self-policing system.

When democracy does not work –

Suppose the folks in the county (X-ville, Y-ville, Z-ville) decide to have just one “town meeting” in place of the three held in each town. All 150 families gather monthly in the Y-ville church – majority rules. Will the majority (100 families from Y-ville & Z-ville) know anything about widow Jones? Not likely. Will their consciences serve to self-police their majority rule?

My point – In a large group, the minority is often overlooked. The majority becomes a tyranny.

A system ruled by a majority is called a “democracy”. The ultimate “democracy” is a lynch mob. Only one person in the group objects!

America’s founders recognized the significance of small electorates (those who may vote in an election). The president is elected by the states. Congressmen are elected by CD (“congressional districts” with more or less equal number of voters).

Before the 17th Ammendment [April 8, 1913] U.S. Senators (2 per state), were elected by their state legislators. Thus – Since CA has 80 Assemblymen and 40 state Senators [120 legislators], Senators Boxer & Feinstein would be elected to the U.S. senate by a majority of 120 votes.

After the 17th Ammendment was (passed by the people!), Boxer and Feinstein are elected by a majority of ALL the voters in CA (18 million voters!!!!).

Think about it.

Would you rather take great care in your choice of a state legislator and trust him and at least 60 others to send a CA Senator to Washington – or – Leave it to the good judgment of at least 9 million plus 1 (a majority of voters). Which system better limits the behavior of a U.S. Senator? What size “tea party” group will it require to threaten re-election of a State Senator answerable to 9,000,001 voters?

So why did the people vote away their sovereignty over the U.S. Senate? They were duped. They did not understand the difference between “democracy” (majority rule) and “republic” (representation). They needed a course in “Principles of American Government!

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Washington – The Indispensable Man

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These posts to our ACH blog over the years, have served to draw each of you, dear reader, in my concepts, closer to me. It is, to me, as if I were writing to each of you individually.

This morning, before Church, I opened an e-mail with the following URL attachment –

http://www.newsmax.com/live/Gingrich-Lecture/?s=al&promo_code=128ED-1

I opened it to view Newt Gingrich in Mount Vernon lecturing on George Washington.

WOW! Every American MUST be encouraged to view this lecture! (Including the very practical Q&A at the end.) It is an hour-long video. Set it, please, as a priority.

I chose to skip church this morning to finish viewing it and send this encouragement to you. It will serve to put our discouragements and problems today, into a providential context.

Should the URL above not open, I am sure it can be found by googling the title on your web browser.

Please enjoy it and share it broadly!

For His-story and Government,

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Govt 101 – Separation of Powers

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Definitions  — [“government” is — direction, regulation, control, restraint]

 

  • First – You plan a project.
  • Second – You carry out the plan.
  • Third — You consider how the plan worked.

 

  • A football coach conceives a play and diagrams it for the team.
  • The team executes the play.
  • They judge whether it was executed according to the plan – AND – whether it worked.

 

Think about this –

 

Everything you do.  Every project – From planning the day before you get up, to brushing your teeth and getting dressed – Involves these three functions of “government”.

 

All government involves, legislative, executive, judicial functions.  These functions are represented in the departments of American civil government.

 

  • Congress legislates (makes a law).
  • The President executes the law.
  • The Supreme Court judges the law against the Constitution (the standard).

 

Each department of government is independent of the others:

  • The Congress is elected by the people.
  • The President is elected by the states (Electoral College).
  • The Supreme Court is appointed for life (i.e. independent of changing politics).

 

Our founders wanted each department to be jealous of its turf.  They called it “Separation of Powers”.

 

Note to reader – I lack the computer savvy to insert a diagram.  You do it below please.

Draw an equilateral triangle – but – DO NOT join the corners.  Label the legs, “Legislative”, “Executive”, “Judicial”.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now – Pause and consider how each department functions and “checks and balances” the others.

 

Next – Pause and think about what would happen if any two departments were in one person’s hands.  Can you see how the combined departments would overrule the third.

 

When I was a boy, President Roosevelt was having trouble with the Supreme Court.  He proposed adding three more judges (would have given him a favorable majority).  Fortunately, it was not allowed.

 

Our governmental system is outstanding!  There is nothing wrong with the mechanics!  Today’s problem rests with those exercising the authority of each department.  The Legislature is gridlocked in partisan battles.  The President commits treason almost daily.  The Supreme Court Justices are twisting the intent of our Constitution.  Our unique system of government is imploding!

 

The solution to today’s problem rests in our hands.  The ONLY authority those in government have is what we give them.  The conflict between more or less power in government in unending.  It is “we the people” who have neglected and forgotten governmental principles.  It is “we the people” who have taken the lazy way out and permitted the statists to train up our children in the (unintelligent) way they should go.  It is “we the people” who are the ONLY ones, with God’s help, who can stand up and take responsibility for our actions and the means of correcting the damage.

 

By the way – “judicial”, “legislative”, “executive”, functions are Biblical concepts!

“For the Lord is out judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king, he will save us.”  [Isaiah 33:22]

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Watchmen and Walls

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A long time friend and fellow patriot, asked for my thoughts, feedback and insights, regarding two online films, “The Money Masters” and “After the Tribulation”. I watched the first film this afternoon, but had to leave my desk before reviewing the second.

I left because my wife and I had a date for pizza and a movie at a church social with our Sunday School “Prime Timers’ 50+” class. The movie, “Last Ounce of Courage,” was about American town folk, facing down efforts to erode their liberty.

The contrast between, “The Money Masters” and “Last Ounce …” was stark. I hurried home to get this typed while it is fresh in my thoughts. — — —

Money Masters” is a very well made documentary on international banking conspiracies. I have been aware of these facts for decades, since first becoming interested in principles of government [1962]. The film documents how money has been used to manipulate wars and peace at the great expense of many, and the great profit of an elite few. It traces such historical manipulation as the source of European wars (Napoleon & Wellington), William of Orange becoming King, the American War for Independence, our civil war, our stock market crashes, … … and on and on. No doubt most of the facts are true. The conclusion – These elite are seeking a “New World Order” a “Global Government” under their control.

The question is often asked, “Why isn’t such important information included in ACH Study Groups curriculum?

I reply. “What does such knowledge produce? –Awe at the size of the problem; A sense of hopelessness and fatalism; Frustration and anger. When we study evil we become fascinated. We want others to “wake up” and see what we see! The enemy is within our gates! We become “authorities” on this or that evil conspiracy. Satan is always ready to give us more evil things to study and focus upon!

I rebuke it!

How big is your God?

They quote [Ezekiel 33:6], “But if the watchman see the sword come, and blow not the trumpet, and the people be not warned, if the sword come, and take any person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity, but his blood will I require at the watchman’s hand.

Dear reader – I am on the roof-top blowing the trumpet with all my might!! ACH Study Groups (the organization my Lord has lead us to create) is dedicated to teaching Providential History and Biblical Principles of Government. That is – We teach what is right – not – what is wrong. Generations of Americans have been slowly separated from such teaching. When they discover what they did not know they did not know, such knowledge produces – Hope, Faith, Life, Enthusiasm, …, …! Very positive results indeed.

Perhaps the Rothchild family did indeed finance both France and England. Napoleon was a tyrant, the result of a French revolution that degraded into anarchy. Locke, Montesquieu, Sidney did not put their views on the table to support a banking conspiracy. Their work was rooted in promoting Biblical concepts of civilization that changed European thought. The Bible in English – not a banking conspiracy – was the seed of the greatest growth in literacy in human history. That (literacy) in turn, produced the industrial revolution, NOT a banking conspiracy.

The Pilgrims were not persecuted because they used the wrong bank! They did not come to Plymouth for a better banking system! “Lives, fortunes and sacred honor” were not pledged to an improved monetary system!

There is within every man, a desire to order his actions, and dispose of his possessions and person as he thinks fit. Unless he controls his will and appetite, that will lead to either anarchy (lawlessness) or tyranny (slavery). If he governs his will and appetite, within the laws of nature and of nature’s God, that will lead to liberty. [2nd Chonicles 7:14]

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The state of our union – with Christ

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My nomination for greatest master-teacher in the field of Providential History and Governmental Principle – – James Rose, American Christian History Institute.

Like so many of those involved in restoring awareness of the subject, Mr. Rose studied under FACE (Miss Hall & Miss Slater). Their wisdom and foresight impress me more each day I study and teach! James Rose authored, “A guide to American Christian Education for the Home and School.” [1987]

On page 10 of, “A Guide …” is a quote from another master-teacher who was inspired by FACE – Miss Kathy Dang:

“In ignorance, Christians are aiding and abetting anti-Christianity in America. More than any other factor, it is the weakness of Christian character and scholarship that is responsible for this country’s apostasy from its founding Christian principles of education, government and economics.

“The pagan remains true to paganism. Spiritual backsliding is a believer’s trait, not a pagan’s. The dissolution of Christian character has resulted from generations of unbiblical education among Christian institutions of teaching and learning.

“Christians are duped to believe that the ‘forces without’ are mightier and inevitable; thus they isolate themselves, calling it separation, only to breed more cowards after their own kind.1 The battle is within; the enemy is within the camp; that enemy is American Christianity’s own ignorance to effect superior spiritual armerments.

“Impotent and unequipped to supplant or displace, Christians tacitly consent to creeping socialistic policies in their own institutions: homes, churches, and schools, advancing the kingdom of Satan.

“The need is for a soul-searching of content and methods in pastoring and teaching, to consider their implications for home, church, school and state.

“The need is for a generation of American Christians who know God and His word, and by their own scholarship know how to implement their knowledge. It is the duty of Christian educators to lead in advance of their students, not only to stem the tide of anti-Christian socialism, but to seek an effective alternative in schooling parents, pastors, businessmen, and statesmen. American Christianity must first sanctify itself before this nation can be purged of her enemies and reclaimed for Christ.”

Hmm – I wonder what she really thinks! I have always respected Miss Dang for her no-nonsense teaching. There is more to the quote – but you get the idea. Mr. Rose adds the footnote:

1There is, of course, a Biblical basis for separation – ecclesiastically, morally and socially (II Cor. 6:14-18), but the emphasis here is on false isolation in the name of separation. …

If what I have quoted (and endorsed) from Miss Dang rings true to the reader, it will surely inspire and encourage efforts to humbly cooperate with God’s efforts to “heal our land” [II Chron 7:14].

If, on the other hand, the reader reacts against the challenge and wishes to contradict her / our view of the American church – or has the view that America is beyond redemption and needs to dissolve and get out of the way of “providence” – I suggest not throwing rocks at the messenger because you dislike the message.

Permit me, please, a last quote concerning “The state of our union – with Christ

The Astonishing Accomplishment of Christianity

"In proportion as Americans let go of faith in the absolute power of God, they have accepted the belief in an all powerful State. This is true of peoples or nations, for their idea of God determines the form of their civil, political, religious and social institutions . . . Each religion has a form of government, and Christianity astonished the world by establishing self-government . . . . Reading and studying American history revealed the fact that this nation is unique; it had a singular beginning; it has the sacred covenant of individual freedom or local self-government in all spheres entrusted to its care."

Verna Hall, The Christian History of the Constitution of the United States: Christian Self-government, 1960, pp II-III

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The significance of insignificance

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Miss Verna Hall and Miss Rosalie Slater, were founders of FACE (Foundation for American Christian Education), precursor to most of today’s efforts to restore America’s heritage and founding principles. They were sticklers for details – the little things that seem insignificant.

Miss Hall (though a close friend, when in public, it was always “Miss Hall,” or “Mister. Gilmore” – never – “Verna, or Ben”!). I recall her standard response to “The study assignment is too hard!” She replied, “Don’t lower the bar, challenge the student to reach for it.” She shunned paraphrases, insisting that the student struggle to understand the original text – even with ancient fonts where the f’s look like s’s!

Unlike modern cyberspeak “the ladies” never seemed to use abbreviations, or improper grammar, when they wrote. They often spoke of “Dress to honor your subject.” Contrast that with the trend away from use of capital letters (unless to indicate shouting), and the shift from IBM’s norm of suit and tie, to Apple’s sport shirt and jeans.

The popular series, “Downton Abby” illustrates the passing of aristocratic norms, like dressing up for dinner. Granted: American culture shuns (or used to shun) “class distinctions.” Still, something of personal and cultural self-image is lost by lowering the bar.

FACE initiated a term, “The Principle Approach” which appears to me to be a philosophy of teaching, that challenges the student to “4-R” a subject (Research, Reason, Relate, Record). PA students are challenged to study a subject, think through its purpose and origin, relate it to their personal life adventure, then record their conclusions in some form. Such “critical thinking” appears to be a lost art in today’s culture.

Miss Slater encouraged us to home school our youngest daughter way back, before it was a common practice. Folks use to ask, “Is it legal?” Sally Thoman, one among many we have since introduced to home schooling, had these golden words, “My greatest fulfillment as a parent is when I am home schooling my child.

If it be true – “The fear (reverence) of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.” [Proverbs 9:10] It follows that an irreverent teacher is incapable of producing a “wise” student! Our whole public school system has been made irreverent by fiat!

In the next generation, the pool of “wise” leaders will come from the knees of homeschool parents!

If it be true that no civil government rises without the hand of God. It should be possible to discover His “providence” in our states’ and national history [His-Story]!

My beloved wife, Fran, has been researching the “Christian history of our home state – Texas.” She came across a most interesting individual, Lorenzo de Zavala, a Mexican national, who was elected as the first Vice President of the Republic of Texas. A chapter of her research has been published as a text book in the “God & Texas Series.

Like Alexis de Tocqeuville, Zavala toured young America to discover its greatness. Zavala wrote back to his Mexican compatriots –

“Repair your roads; raise up houses in order to live like rational beings; dress your children and your wives with decency; don’t incite riots in order to take what belongs to somebody else. And finally, live on the fruit of your labors, and then you will be worthy of liberty and of the praises of sensible and impartial men.”

[Lorenzo de Zavala, Journey to the United States of North America. “Prologue.”]

As we seek to restore things of value – Let us not overlook the “insignificant.

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