Forefathers For A Future

It is oft said that the truth of history lay in the hands of the historians. It is a fact much like freedom of the press belonging to those who own the press. The more I understand the history of our country the more dismayed I become at the lies upon which this country was founded. Even more, I realize how little the conflict of class warfare has changed in over two hundred years.

Take for example the recent mortgage crisis and Bank of Americas “rent back” program. Bank of America, guilty of fraud in the mortgage crisis, now gets the benefit of leasing their homes in the aftermath of the economic collapse they helped to create. Consumers lose their entire savings and the bank comes out ahead (again). This is nothing new though. A cursory glance at our “founding fathers” reveals much of the same upper class greed. The nations motto should read “In God We Lust”.

George Washington, our first president and a slave owner, had turned down the requests of blacks seeking freedom, to fight in the Revolutionary army. As one of the richest men in the colonies (if not the richest), he needed the slaves to work his plantations. Giving them freedom would not protect the status quo.

Lord Fairfax, a Loyalist friend of Washington, had his 5 million plus acres protected after the revolution while other Loyalists were stripped of their land titles. His bias in “democracy” was obvious. His own aide, Alexander Hamilton, is quoted as telling him “The people are turbulent and changing; they seldom judge or determine right. Give therefore to the first class a distinct permanent share in the government.” George took his advice to heart.

Thomas Jefferson who wrote our Declaration of Independence was as equally biased as Washington was. In no uncertain terms did Jefferson believe “that all men are created equal”. Indians, women and blacks were not in the least bit considered “equal”. Some have argued that Jefferson held sensitivities toward the black race but, even if so, his actions cowered to the cotton plantations, the slave trade, and the politics of unity. He further soured any good name he could possess by his part in the barbaric slaughter of the native indians. All of this was for the furtherance of commercial enterprise and land speculation.

Theodore Roosevelt was, to put it politely, a war monger. Writing to a friend in 1897 he stated, “I should welcome almost any war, for I think this country needs one.” It was the height of the populist movement and capitalists needed something to distract the “lower classes” from their labor grievances: a war would do just fine. He was an expansionist and war was a trusted tool.

While Roosevelt made a reputation for himself as a “trust-buster”, the positive aspects of his presidency are marred by his compromises (if not bribery) with J.P. Morgan’s men- Elbert Gary, chairman of U.S. Steel, and George Perkins, who became a campaigner for Roosevelt. They “arranged a general understanding with Roosevelt by which . . . they would cooperate in any investigation by the Bureau of Corporations in return for a guarantee of their companies’ legality.”

Abraham Lincoln is generally credited with the abolition of slavery but, make no mistake, Lincoln was not an abolitionist. He believed that the 10th amendment could not constitutionally bar slavery in the states and he refused to denounce the Fugitive Slave Law publicly. While campaigning for Senate in southern Illinois, he told his audience, “I will say, then, that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and black races”. At the end of the civil war blacks were free but, more importantly to Lincoln, commerce could continue uninterrupted. The property confiscated under the Confiscation Act of July 1862 was given back to the Confederate owners and the common man, once again, was left holding nothing but the scars of war.

It’s not my intent to disparage the future by dragging up the past but, as is oft quoted, those who don’t know history are doomed to repeat it. The lies our forefathers told are still being repeated today: corporations are people and banks are too big to fail. In God We Lust: what better motto could there be for a nation who, in homage, carves the faces of such men in granite on stolen land? Indeed the Scripture is true: For the love of money is the root of all evil (1 Timothy 6:10).

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