Monday, July 7, 2008

Rulers vs. Leaders

One of the things that inspired the American Revolution was the idea that men were not created to be ruled over by other men by some "appointed" God-given right. Even the English had some sense of that although its full realization did not occur in the United Kingdom until later. In this country, the establishment of the Republic was to guarantee leaders, that is men and women who could inspire (key word) others to go in a direction for the benefit of the country. They were not in office to tell their lowly minions and servants what to do and how to do it. How far we have come.
Our current president and our two candidates for President envisage themselves not as leaders (though they will not acutally say such) but as rulers. None of them (not even Barack) have the charisma or inspiration or speaking ability of a JFK, an FDR or a Ronald Reagan. They treat the people of this country as stupid (and many, if not, most are), but that in of itself does not entitle the President to become a transcendent entity with a sacred ordination which gives supreme authority over everyone else to correct their supposed stupidity. Such is antithetical to the nature of the Republic which was founded upon the principle of "all men are created equal." (Yes, I know that's from the Declaration of Independence and not the Constitution, but the same idea is present in both documents so don't bother trying to correct me on a petty nuance which I thought of way in advance of you, genius.)
We have Barack telling us how to live, what kind of car to drive, how low or high we can keep our thermostats. John McCain may not be saying exactly the same thing in so many words, but his agenda is filled with just as many freedom-restricting items.
So our choices: ruler 1 vs. ruler 2. And I guess we have to vote for one; it's a two-party system. Such makes a great case for an actual third party. As for me, I'm voting Libertarian, the bastion of lost causes.


soonerfaninks said...

Were the founders right that leaders do not have a God-given right to rule?

Chris said...

Again, there is a distinction between lead and rule. We are endowed by our creator with rights which are not to be abused, certainly not by our leaders. Thus, in the minds of Jefferson and Madison, the leaders of the state are subordinate to divine rights granted to individuals, not vice versa which is found in Hobbesian Absolutism.

soonerfaninks said...
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soonerfaninks said...

Biblically or theologically, how do you justify that one's "endowed rights" supercede the authority rulers are given by God. And what are these rights exactly?

Chris said...


Read the declaration of independence. The rights of individuals are guaranteed as sacrosanct to the point that if they are violated, the individuals are allowed if not compelled to take action to restore lost rights.

I'm not talking biblically or theologically here. I'm restating the positions held by our Founding Fathers, particulary Jefferson and Madison.

soonerfaninks said...

I understand, but is it not possible they were wrong? Perhaps the Revolutionary war was unjust?

Chris said...

War of Revolution was unjust? Phil, don't get yourself caught saying that on the Fourth of July!

Were they, the founding fathers, wrong? I suppose, but it is a a political philosophy that I do subscribe to (hence why I'm a libertarian!). It is by no means perfect, nor intended to be perfect, but the converse of absolute rule is not acceptable.