Tag Archives: Thomas Jefferson

Only 1 in 3 Americans could pass a U.S. citizenship test

Do you wonder why so many Americans have piled onto the Democrats’ persecution of Judge Brett Kavanaugh, seemingly oblivious to America’s fundamental principles of evidence-based accusation and innocent until proven guilty?

The answer is in the stunning results of a recent national survey which found that only one-third of adult Americans could pass a multiple-choice U.S. citizenship test, with a passing score of 60. The test consisted of items taken from the actual U.S. Citizenship Test. Younger Americans (age 45 and younger) are even more ignorant, with just 19% (2 out of 10) who passed the test.

The survey of a random (and thetrefore representative) sample of 1,000 American citizens was conduced by research firm Lincoln Park Strategies for the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation, which was founded in 1945 to identify, develop, and support America’s best minds to be the next generation of leaders. The survey has a margin of error of ±3%.

In a press release on October 3, 2018, the Foundation made public the results:

  • Only 1 in 3 Americans (36%) passed a multiple choice test consisting of items taken from the U.S. Citizenship Test, which has a passing score of 60.
  • Only 13% knew when the U.S. Constitution was ratified, with most incorrectly thinking it occurred in 1776.
  • More than half (60%) didn’t know which countries the United States fought in World War II.
  • Despite the recent media spotlight on the U.S. Supreme Court, 57% did not know how many Justices actually serve on the nation’s highest court.
  • 72% either incorrectly identified or were unsure of which states were part of the 13 original states.
  • Only 24% could correctly identify one thing Benjamin Franklin was famous for; 37% mistakenly believed he invented the lightbulb.
  • Only 24% knew the correct answer as to why the colonists fought the British.
  • 12% incorrectly thought WWII General Dwight Eisenhower led troops in the Civil War; 6% thought he was a Vietnam War general.
  • While most knew the cause of the Cold War, 2% said the Cold War was about climate change.
  • Age gap: Americans 65 years and older scored the best, with 74% answering at least 6 in 10 questions correctly. For those under the age of 45, only 19% passed the test; 81% scored 59% or lower.
  • Despite their lack of even a basic understanding of American history, most respondents in the survey said U.S. history was an appealing subject during their time in school; 40% said it was their favorite subject.

Woodrow Wilson Foundation President Arthur Levine said:

With voters heading to the polls next month, an informed and engaged citizenry is essential. Unfortunately this study found the average American to be woefully uninformed regarding America’s history and incapable of passing the U.S. Citizenship Test. It would be an error to view these findings as merely an embarrassment. Knowledge of the history of our country is fundamental to maintaining a democratic society, which is imperiled today. Americans need to understand the past in order to make sense of a chaotic present and an inchoate future. History is both an anchor in a time when change assails us and a laboratory for studying the changes that are occurring. It offers the promise of providing a common bond among Americans in an era in which our divisions are profound and our differences threaten to overshadow our commonalities.

Alas, the Woodrow Wilson Foundation does not break down the survey results by political party identification.

Washington Times has a 24-question multiple-choice US citizenship test. The newspaper explains:

An important part of the application process for becoming a US citizen is passing a civics test, covering important U.S. history and government topics. There are 100 civics questions on the naturalization test. During the interview process, applicants are asked up to 10 questions and must be able to answer at least 6 questions correctly. Here is a sampling of what may be asked.

The 24 questions are really, really easy for regular readers of FOTM. As an example, the first question is “Who is in charge of the executive branch?”.

To take the test, click here.

I got 24/24. What’s your score?

H/t GiGi

~Eowyn

Better than Drudge Report. Check out Whatfinger News, the Internet’s conservative frontpage founded by ex-military!

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Remembering that first Fourth of July 241 years ago

Today, July 4, 2017, is the 241st anniversary of America’s Declaration of Independence.
As the light of freedom dims in America, we should recall that first Fourth of July in 1776, when 56 men convened in a hot stuffy room in Philadelphia to deliberate on and sign the Declaration of Independence.
There are 3 parts to this post:

  1. An evocative narrative of that day in 1776.
  2. What happened to the 56 men who signed the Declaration.
  3. The Declaration of Independence.


The Americans Who Risked Everything,” by Rush H. Limbaugh, Jr. (father of talk radio titan Rush Limbaugh, III):

It was a glorious morning. The sun was shining and the wind was from the southeast. Up especially early, a tall bony, redheaded young Virginian found time to buy a new thermometer, for which he paid three pounds, fifteen shillings. He also bought gloves for Martha, his wife, who was ill at home.
Thomas Jefferson arrived early at the statehouse. The temperature was 72.5 degrees and the horseflies weren’t nearly so bad at that hour. It was a lovely room, very large, with gleaming white walls. The chairs were comfortable. Facing the single door were two brass fireplaces, but they would not be used today.
The moment the door was shut, and it was always kept locked, the room became an oven. The tall windows were shut, so that loud quarreling voices could not be heard by passersby. Small openings atop the windows allowed a slight stir of air, and also a large number of horseflies. Jefferson records that “the horseflies were dexterous in finding necks, and the silk of stockings was nothing to them.” All discussing was punctuated by the slap of hands on necks.
On the wall at the back, facing the president’s desk, was a panoply — consisting of a drum, swords, and banners seized from Fort Ticonderoga the previous year. Ethan Allen and Benedict Arnold had captured the place, shouting that they were taking it “in the name of the Great Jehovah and the Continental Congress!”
Now Congress got to work, promptly taking up an emergency measure about which there was discussion but no dissension. “Resolved: That an application be made to the Committee of Safety of Pennsylvania for a supply of flints for the troops at New York.”
Then Congress transformed itself into a committee of the whole. The Declaration of Independence was read aloud once more, and debate resumed. Though Jefferson was the best writer of all of them, he had been somewhat verbose. Congress hacked the excess away. They did a good job, as a side-by-side comparison of the rough draft and the final text shows. They cut the phrase “by a self-assumed power.” “Climb” was replaced by “must read,” then “must” was eliminated, then the whole sentence, and soon the whole paragraph was cut. Jefferson groaned as they continued what he later called “their depredations.” “Inherent and inalienable rights” came out “certain unalienable rights,” and to this day no one knows who suggested the elegant change.
A total of 86 alterations were made. Almost 500 words were eliminated, leaving 1,337. At last, after three days of wrangling, the document was put to a vote.
Here in this hall Patrick Henry had once thundered: “I am no longer a Virginian, sir, but an American.” But today the loud, sometimes bitter argument stilled, and without fanfare the vote was taken from north to south by colonies, as was the custom. On July 4, 1776, the Declaration of Independence was adopted.

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The Fate of the Signers

Even before the list was published, the British marked down every member of Congress suspected of having put his name to treason. All of them became the objects of vicious manhunts. Some were taken. Some, like Jefferson, had narrow escapes. All who had property or families near British strongholds suffered.
Of those 56 who signed the Declaration of Independence, nine died of wounds or hardships during the war. Five were captured and imprisoned, in each case with brutal treatment. Several lost wives, sons or entire families. One lost his 13 children. Two wives were brutally treated. All were at one time or another the victims of manhunts and driven from their homes. Twelve signers had their homes completely burned. Seventeen lost everything they owned. Yet not one defected or went back on his pledged word. Their honor, and the nation they sacrificed so much to create is still intact. [from “The Americans Who Risked Everything“]

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The Declaration of Independence

The Want, Will and Hopes of the People

IN CONGRESS, JULY 4, 1776
The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America

When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. — Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.
He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their Public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected, whereby the Legislative Powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.
He has obstructed the Administration of Justice by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary Powers.
He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people and eat out their substance.
He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.
He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil Power.
He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:
For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
For protecting them, by a mock Trial from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:
For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
For depriving us in many cases, of the benefit of Trial by Jury:
For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences:
For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies
For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.
He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation, and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & Perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.
He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.
He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.
In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.
Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.
We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these united Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States, that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. — And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.
John Hancock
New Hampshire:
Josiah Bartlett, William Whipple, Matthew Thornton
Massachusetts:
John Hancock, Samuel Adams, John Adams, Robert Treat Paine, Elbridge Gerry
Rhode Island:
Stephen Hopkins, William Ellery
Connecticut:
Roger Sherman, Samuel Huntington, William Williams, Oliver Wolcott
New York:
William Floyd, Philip Livingston, Francis Lewis, Lewis Morris
New Jersey:
Richard Stockton, John Witherspoon, Francis Hopkinson, John Hart, Abraham Clark
Pennsylvania:
Robert Morris, Benjamin Rush, Benjamin Franklin, John Morton, George Clymer, James Smith, George Taylor, James Wilson, George Ross
Delaware:
Caesar Rodney, George Read, Thomas McKean
Maryland:
Samuel Chase, William Paca, Thomas Stone, Charles Carroll of Carrollton
Virginia:
George Wythe, Richard Henry Lee, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Harrison, Thomas Nelson, Jr., Francis Lightfoot Lee, Carter Braxton
North Carolina:
William Hooper, Joseph Hewes, John Penn
South Carolina:
Edward Rutledge, Thomas Heyward, Jr., Thomas Lynch, Jr., Arthur Middleton
Georgia:
Button Gwinnett, Lyman Hall, George Walton

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“I am no longer a Virginian, sir, but an American.”
How many Americans today — like this Vietnamese immigrant — identify first and foremost as American instead of by a perpetually-aggrieved race or ethnicity or country-of-origin or class or gender or political party?
Today, the Left and RINOs deify globalism, and portray American nationalism as a dirty word and American nationalists as racists. How low we have sunken . . . .
Friends and patriots, on this Independence Day, never forget the sacrifices so willingly undertaken by this nation’s founding fathers. Let us take up the challenge and make sure that the dream they began 241 years ago be never extinguished.
May God have mercy on America.

~Éowyn

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Amerika: A nation of know-nothing potheads

sheeple
This past Wednesday, Sept. 17, was Constitution Day — the 227th anniversary of the signing of the U.S. Constitution.
It’s a sad day for our Founding Fathers because after they had labored and sacrificed to establish a government of checks and balances and the rule of law, for the people, by the people, and of the people, only 36% or about one of every three Americans can name the three branches of government — executive, legislative, judicial — which the Constitution had created.
Reid Wilson reports for The Washington Post, Sept. 18, 2014, on more findings from the new survey from the Annenberg Public Policy Center:

  • Only 38% of Americans know the Republican Party controls the U.S. House of Representatives, while 17% think Democrats are still in charge. Worse still, fewer Americans –a drop of 17% — now know the GOP controls the House than back in 2011, right after Republicans had reclaimed control of the lower chamber.
  • An identical number, 38%, knows Democrats run the Senate, while 20% believe Republicans control the upper chamber.
  • Only 27% know it takes a two-thirds majority of the House and Senate to override a presidential veto.
  • 15% of Americans correctly identified the chief justice of the United States, John Roberts; but 27% know Randy Jackson was a judge on American Idol.
  • Only 13% know the Constitution was signed in 1787.

There are groups, like the Civics Education Initiative (CEI), which are are pushing to include more civics education in high schools by requiring students to pass the same citizenship test that immigrants do when they come to America. CEI will introduce legislation in seven states that would require passage of the citizenship test before graduating.
Meanwhile, Kate Rogers reports for CNBC, Sept. 18, 2014, that 1 in 10 Americans are showing up to work high on pot.
A new survey conducted by Mashable.com in partnership with SurveyMonkey found 9.7% of Americans fessed up to smoking marijuana before showing up to the office. Worse still, nearly 81% said they scored their cannabis illegally.
james Madison
Think you can do better than the 36% of Americans who can’t name the three branches of the U.S. government? Take the American Civics Literacy Quiz!
After you’ve taken the quiz, compare your score to our elected officials by going to “How Elected Officials Scored on American Civics Literacy.”

~Eowyn
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Thomas Jefferson. He Tried To Warn Us.

Too Many to hide from.

Too Many to hide from.


There are two parts. Be
sure to read the 2nd part (in RED).
Thomas Jefferson was a very remarkable man who started learning very early in life and never stopped.
At 5, began studying under his cousin’s tutor.
At 9, studied Latin, Greek and French.
At 14, studied classical literature and additional languages.
At 16, entered the College of William and Mary. Also could write in Greek with one hand while writing the same in Latin with the other.
At 19, studied Law for 5 years starting under George Wythe.
At 23, started his own law practice.
At 25, was elected to the Virginia House of Burgesses.
At 31, wrote the widely circulated “Summary View of the Rights of British America ? And retired from his law practice.
At 32, was a Delegate to the Second Continental
Congress.
At 33, wrote the Declaration of Independence .
At 33, took three years to revise Virginia ‘s legal code and wrote a Public Education bill and a statute for Religious Freedom.
At 36, was elected the second Governor of Virginia succeeding Patrick Henry.
At 40, served in Congress for two years.
At 41, was the American minister to France and negotiated commercial treaties with European nations along with Ben Franklin and John Adams.
At 46, served as the first Secretary of State under George Washington.
At 53, served as Vice President and was elected president of the American Philosophical Society.
At 55, drafted the Kentucky Resolutions and became the active head of Republican Party.
At 57, was elected the third president of the United States .
At 60, obtained the Louisiana Purchase doubling the nation’s size.
At 61, was elected to a second term as President.
At 65, retired to Monticello .
At 80, helped President Monroe shape the Monroe Doctrine.
At 81, almost single-handedly created the
University of Virginia and served as its first president.
At 83, died on the 50th anniversary of the Signing of the Declaration of Independence along with John Adams.
Thomas Jefferson knew because he himself studied the previous failed attempts at government. He understood actual history, the nature of God, his laws and the nature of man. That happens to be way more than what most understand today. Jefferson really knew his stuff. A voice from the past to lead us in the future:
John F. Kennedy held a dinner in the white House for a group of the brightest minds in the nation at that time. He made this statement: “This is perhaps the assembly of the most intelligence ever to gather at one time in the White House with the exception of when Thomas Jefferson dined alone.”
 
“When we get piled upon one another in large cities, as in Europe, we shall become as corrupt as Europe .”
— Thomas Jefferson
“The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not.”
— Thomas Jefferson
“It is incumbent on every generation to pay its own debts as it goes. A principle which if acted on would save one-half the wars of the world.”
— Thomas Jefferson
“I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them.”
— Thomas Jefferson
“My reading of history convinces me that most bad government results from too much government.”
— Thomas Jefferson
“No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms.”
— Thomas Jefferson
“The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government.”
— Thomas Jefferson
“The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.”
— Thomas Jefferson
“To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical.”
— Thomas Jefferson
Thomas Jefferson said in 1802:
“I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies.
If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, the banks and corporations that will grow up around the banks will deprive the people of all property – until their children wake-up homeless on
the continent their fathers conquered.”
~Steve~                                                        H/T I-Man
 

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Satanic Temple wants prayer in school to the Devil

crucifix repels vampireJust like their father, the Devil, who twists and perverts God’s words, Satanists in America are hell bent on exploiting the Constitution’s First Amendment guarantees for their purpose.

In 2009, the conservative-led Oklahoma state legislature approved a privately funded Ten Commandments monument, which was erected last year outside the state Capitol building.

While atheists and the ACLU oppose the Ten Commandment monument on the grounds of the First Amendment’s misinterpreted “separation of church and state” — a phrase not found in the First Amendment but originates in an 1802 letter by Thomas Jefferson — a group of New York-based devil worshippers who call themselves the Satanic Temple, demand their right to erect a monument to Satan next to the Ten Commandments in the name of “religious parity.”

Below is the Satanic Temple’s proposed 7-foot-tall statue of Satan as Baphomet, a goat-headed figure with horns, wings and a long beard that’s often used as a symbol of the occult. In the rendering, Satan is sitting in a pentagram-adorned throne with smiling children next to him.

Baphomet

Now, the Satanic Temple, in the name of “protecting the children,” wants in on the right to pray in school – as long as they can pray to the devil.

Brownie Marie reports for Christianity Today, April 14, 2014, that the devil worshipers say they are fighting for the rights of public school students to learn in a cruelty-free classroom.

In a press release, the Temple declared May 15 as “Protect Children Day” to promote the rights of public school students to learn in a cruelty-free classroom, free of physical and mental abuse.

Temple spokesman Lucien Greaves said, “One of the fundamental tenets of The Satanic Temple is personal sovereignty and the inviolability of one’s body and mind. Hitting a child or placing them in solitary confinement goes entirely against our beliefs. We want children to know that they are permitted to pray to Satan in school and that they can even share their religious beliefs with others in accordance with certain guidelines.”

Lucien GreavesGreaves makes the devil’s horns hand-sign (Oops! Excuse me! it’s really the “I love you” sign of deaf-mutes! No, it’s really the Texas Longhorns handsign! Sarc) at a Satanic Temple rally in Tallahassee, on Jan. 25, 2013, in support of Florida Governor Rick Scott’s Senate Bill 98.

Students are encouraged to register on Satanic Temple’s website, ProtectChildrenProject.com, where they are asked to submit their name, email address, and the name of their school in order to receive “help” from the Temple. The organization sanctimoniously insists that submission does not make one a Temple member, and is open to all denominations.

However, at the same time as ProtectChildrenProject.com provides fact sheets on physical and psychological abuse in schools, also available is a Satanic activity book.

Parents and grandparents, beware!!!!!!!!!

~Eowyn

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St. Robert Bellarmine and the Declaration of Independence

Today is the feast day of St. Robert Bellarmine!

FOTM, therefore, is paying homage to this saint by re-publishing joandarc’s post from last year. 🙂

Today, September 17th, is the Feast Day of a most remarkable man, St. Robert Bellarmine.

He was born on October 4, 1542, in Montepulciano near Siena, Italy.  He had an excellent education, being schooled in the humanities, theology and philosophy, ordained a Jesuit priest on March 25, 1570.  He was a Professor of Theology at Louvain and was summoned to teach at the Roman College as the Chair of Apologetics.  He is affectionaly known as the Patron Saint of Catechists and Apologists, having approached with charity, reason and thorough analysis, the heresies of his day.  He was made a Cardinal on March 3, 1599 and appointed the Papal Theologian by Pope Clement VIII, and on March 18, 1602, he was appointed the Archbishop of Capua.  He composed varous books on spirituality, on the Church and the Mystical Body of Christ.  Pope Benedict XVI tells us that, “Since as a priest and bishop he was first and foremost a pastor of souls, he felt it was his duty to preach diligently.”  He gave hundreds of sermons.  Pope Benedict XVI further tells us that the “hallmark of Bellarmine’s spirituality is his vivid personal perception of God’s immense goodness.  This is why our Saint truly felt he was a beloved Son of God.  It was a source of great joy to him to pause in recollection, with serenity and simplicity, in prayer and contemplation of God.”

What is most important is that Bellarmine taught that we must center on our own pesonal conversion in order to reform our lives so that we are pleasing to God.

Rev. John C. Rager, S.T.D., stated to Professor David A. Schaff in defense of Bellarmine, that “the Congressional Library still possesses a copy of Patriarcha, a book which once stood on the library shelf of Thomas Jefferson.  Patriarcha, was written by Robert Filmer, the privage theologian of James I of England in defense of the Divine Right of Kings and principally in refutation to the Jesuit Cardinal Bellarmine’s political principles of popular sovereignty.”

Father Rager provides us some interesting parallels, clause for clause, of the American Declaration of Independence and Bellarmine’s statments, to-wit:

With regard to the equaity of men:

Declaration of Independence:  “All men are created equal; they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights.”

Bellarmine:  “All men are equal, not in wisdom or grace, but in the essence and nature of mankind” (De Laicis,” c.7).  “There is no reason why among equals one should rule rather than another.” (Ibid.)  “Let rulers remember that they preside over men who are of the same nature as they themselves” (De Officus Princ.” c.22).  “Political right is immediately from God and necessarily inherent in the nature of man” (De Laicia” c. 6, note 1).

With regard to the function of government:

Declaration of Independence:  “To secure these rights governments are instituted among men.”

Bellarmine:  “It is impossible for men to live together without someone to care for the common good.  Men must be governed by someone lest they be willing to perish” (De Laicia,” c.6).

With regard to the source of power:

Declaration of Independence:  “Governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.”

Bellarmine:  “It depends upon the consent of the multitude to constitute over itself a king, consul, or other magistrate.  This power is, indeed, from God, but vested in a particular ruler by the counsel and election of men” (De Laicis, c. 6, notes 4 and 5).  “The people themselves immediately and directly hold the political power” (De Clericis, c. 7).

With regard to the right to change the government:

Declaration of Independence:  “Whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it, and to institute a new government. . .Prudence, indeed, will dictate that governments long established should not be changed for light and transient reasons.”

Bellarmine:  “For legitimate reasons the people can change the government to an aristocracy or a democracy or vice versa” (De Laicis, c. 6).  “The people never transfers its power to a king so completely but that it reserves to itself the right of receiving back the power” (Recognitio de Laicis, c. 6).

And says Father Rager:

“If Jefferson ever read as many as four pages of this book, he read on the fourth page, the following:

Four times Bellarmine’s name is mentioned in bold print on this contents page of Patriarcha.  The first chapter of Patriarcha is again prefaced with its table of contents and Bellarmine’s name appears on it three times.  Then, if Jefferson read the first lines of the chapter he read this:

‘Since the time that school divinity began to flourish there hath been a common opinion maintained.  Mankind is naturally endowed and born with Freedom, and at liberty to choose what form of Government it please.  And that the Power which any one Man hath over others, was at first bestowed according to the discretion of the Multitude.’

If Jefferson ever read as many as four pages of this book, he read on the fourth page the following:

‘To make evidence the Grounds of this Question, about the Natural Liberty of Mankind, I will lay down some passages of Cardinal Bellarmine, that may best unfold the State of this controversie.  Secular or Civil Power is instituted by man; it is in the people, unless they bestow it on a Prince.  This Power is immediately in the whole Multitude, as in the subject of it; for the Power is in Divine Law, but the Divine Law hath given this Power to no particular man.  If the Positive Law be taken away, there is left no Reason why amongst a Multitude (who are Equal) one rather than another should bear Rule over the Rest.  It depends upon the Consent of the Multitude to ordain over themselves a King, Counsel, or other Magistrates; and if there be a lawful cause the multitude may change the Kingdom into an Aristocracy or Democracy.  Thus, far, Bellarmine, in which passages are coprised the strength of all that I have read or heard produced for the Natural Liberty of the Subject.’ “

And Father Rager asks, “Would not Jefferson, who was seeking a formulation of “the natural liberties of the subject,” be attracted to read and re-read this quotation from Bellarmine which “comprised the strength of all that had ever been produced for the natural liberty of the subject?”  And does not the American Declaration reflect strikingly this very passage of Bellarmine quoted by Filmer and lying open before the eyes of Jefferson?”

We will never actually be able to confirm or deny if Jefferson ever read the original works of St. Robert Bellarmine.  However, in the Library of Princeton University there was, according to Father Rager, “a copy of Cardinal Bellarmine’s works in the days of Jefferson.  James Madison, a member of the committee which drafted the Virginia Declaration of Rights was a graduate of Princeton in 1771 and certainly had access to Bellarmine’s works.”

Pope Benedict XVI tells us that Bellarmine “died in Rome on 17 September 1621.  Pope Pius XI beatified him in 1923, canonized him in 1930 and proclaimed him a Doctor of the Church in 1931.”

One cannot help but find noteworthy the similarities in thought as set out above.  Happy Feast Day to you, Dear St. Robert Bellarmine!  I implore you to interecede for the people of America before the throne of the Triune God to help our country be rid of its present tyranny, of its present war on people of faith lodged by this administration, of its present war on the culture of life where millions and millions of innocent children have lost their lives to legalized abortion on demand.  We need your help Great Saint!

Sources:

General Audience of Pope Benedict XVI, February 23, 2011, Saint Robert Bellarmine, Vatican website.

Catholic Sources and the Declaration of Independence, Rev. John C. Rager, S.T.D., CERC Home website.

~Joan

See our other posts on saints and angels by going to that page. Click here!

~Eowyn

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How bankrupt govt steals your money in 8 steps

big-government
As news on the Great Cyprus Bank Robbery keep getting worse, the latest being the country’s corrupt finance minister Michael Sarris saying that as much as 80% of “large” bank deposits can be confiscated, Americans should be on the alert to copycat moves by our feral government and bankers. All the more because the American Left are applauding the theft of Cypriots’ bank savings.
Tyler Durden of ZeroHedge warns us that when bankrupt insolvent governments “run out of fingers to plug the dikes,” history shows that they fall back on a very limited playbook.
Simon Black of Sovereign Man blog has enumerated 8 steps in the playbook of bankrupt governments:
1. Direct confiscation: As Cyprus showed us, bankrupt governments are quite happy to plunder people’s bank accounts, especially if it’s a wealthy minority. Aside from bank levies, though, this also includes things like seizing retirement accounts (Argentina), increases in civil asset forfeiture (United States), and gold criminalization.
big govt
2. Taxes: Just another form of confiscation, taxation plunders the hard work and talent of the citizenry. But thanks to decades of brainwashing, it’s more socially acceptable. We’ve come to regard taxes as a ‘necessary evil,’ not realizing that the country existed for decades, even centuries, without an income tax. Yet when bankrupt governments get desperate enough, they begin imposing new taxes… primarily WEALTH taxes (Argentina) or windfall profits taxes (United States in the 1970s).
3. Inflation: This is indirect confiscation– the slow, gradual plundering of people’s savings. Again, governments have been quite successful at inculcating a belief that inflation is also a necessary evil. They’re also adept at fooling people with phony inflation statistics.
4. Capital Controls: Governments can, do, and will restrict the free-flow of capital across borders. They’ll prevent you from moving your own money to a safer jurisdiction, forcing you to keep your hard earned savings at home where it can be plundered and devalued. We’re seeing this everywhere in the developed world… from withdrawal limits in Europe to cash-sniffing dogs at border checkpoints. And it certainly doesn’t help when everyone from the IMF to Nobel laureate Paul Krugman argue in favor of Capital Controls.
5. Wage and Price controls: When even the lowest common denominator in society realizes that prices are getting higher, governments step in and ‘fix’ things by imposing price controls. Occasionally this also includes wage controls… though wage increases tend to be vastly outpaced by price increases. Of course, as any basic economics textbook can illustrate, price controls never work and typically lead to shortages and massive misallocations.
6. Wage and Price controls– on STEROIDS: When the first round of price controls don’t work, the next step is to impose severe penalties for not abiding by the terms. In the days of Diocletian’s Edict on Prices in the 4th century AD, any Roman caught violating the price controls was put to death. In post-revolutionary France, shopkeepers who violated the “Law of Maximum” were fleeced of their private property… and a national spy system was put into place to enforce the measures.
7. Increased regulation: Despite being completely broke, governments will dramatically expand their ranks in a last desperate gasp to envelop the problem in sheer size. In the early 1920s, for example, the number of bureaucratic officials in the German Weimar Republic increased 242%, even though the country was flat broke from its World War I reparation payments and hyperinflation episode. The increase in both regulations and government officials criminalizes and/or controls almost every aspect of our existence… from what we can/cannot put in our bodies to how we are allowed to raise our own children.
8. War and National Emergency: When all else fails, just invade another country. Pick a fight. Keep people distracted by working them into a frenzy over men in caves… or some completely irrelevant island.
~Eowyn

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Where have all the good Presidents gone?

Today is Presidents’ Day, a federal holiday that originally was a day to celebrate the birthday of one president — the first President of the United States, George Washington.
By the mid-1980s, with a push from advertisers, the term “Presidents’ Day” began its public appearance. Although Lincoln’s birthday, February 12, was never a federal holiday, approximately a dozen state governments have officially renamed their Washington’s Birthday observances as “Presidents’ Day”, “Washington and Lincoln Day”, or other such designations. In Washington’s home state of Virginia, however, the holiday is still legally known as “George Washington Day.”
By changing Washington’s Day into a generic Presidents’ Day, America has diluted and forgotten this day’s significance. Today, Presidents’ Day is better known for being a day in which many stores, especially car dealers, hold sales.
This post is a reminder of what Presidents’ Day originally was about and of the kind of man America’s first president was.

In a letter to Dr. Walter Jones in 1814, Thomas Jefferson, America’s third President (1801-1809), wrote this about the first President of the newly independent United States of America:

“[H]is was the singular destiny and merit, of leading the armies of his country successfully through an arduous war, for the establishment of its independence; of conducting its councils through the birth of a government, new in its forms and principles, until it had settled down into a quite and orderly train; and of scrupulously obeying the laws through the whole of his career, civil and military, of which the history of the world furnishes no other example.”

George Washington was the commander of the Continental Army in the American Revolutionary War from 1775 to 1783. He never used his command for his own advantage. Washington even rebuked his men when they suggested that he be king or that the army assert its control over the civilian authorities. As Commander in Chief, Washington demonstrated his respect for the rule of law by his consistent deference to the elected Continental Congress.
When he ended his service at the end of the war, he resigned his commission in 1783 and retired to private life at his plantation in Mount Vernon, thereby proving King George III wrong. George III had asked what Washington would do after the war and was told of rumors that he would return to his farm, prompting the King to state, “if he does that, he will be the greatest man in the world.”
Washington presided over the Philadelphia Convention that drafted the United States Constitution in 1787. Washington was elected the first president, unanimously by the Electoral College, something that has never been repeated in American history.
Washington belonged to no political party and served as America’s first President from April 30, 1789 to March 4, 1797. After two terms Washington thought it was important that he step aside. He believed that a peaceful transition of power to a newly elected president was necessary before his death. He feared that if he died in office and the vice-president ascended to the presidency, it would appear too much like an heir ascending to the throne after the death of a king.
Washington’s farewell address was a primer on republican virtue and a stern warning against partisanship, sectionalism, and involvement in foreign wars. When Washington stepped aside at the end of his second term, George III said that Washington’s retirement from the presidency along with his earlier resignation of Commander in Chief, “placed him in a light the most distinguished of any man living,” and that his relinquishing power made him “the greatest character of the age.”
Washington died in 1799. Henry Lee, delivering the funeral oration, declared Washington “first in war, first in peace, and first in the hearts of his countrymen”. Historical scholars consistently rank him as one of America’s greatest presidents. [Sources here and here.]
prayeratvalleyforge
Tears streamed down my face as I wrote this post.
We the People are political orphans. Where have all the good presidents gone?
In their place is a man who picks his nose on live T.V. and a First Lady who lets snot dribble from her nose while delivering a speech to America’s governors.
I will not sully this remembrance of George Washington with those images. Click here to see who we now have in the White House.
~Eowyn

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Think you are being watched? Here come spy street lights!

Security cameras are now everywhere — before private homes, in airports, inside and outside stores of every variety, at bank ATM booths, on street corners and intersections in cities big and small.
Now, we can add the humble street light to the ever-growing list of the Surveillance State.

Look out! Big Brother is Watching You.


Matt Roush reports for CBS Detroit that a company called Illuminating Concepts, based in Michigan’s Farmington Hills, launched its first “Intellistreets” concept installation in its hometown in October of last year, 2011.
Farmington Hills is using federal grant money to become the first site in the world to feature the Intellistreets system, a lighting pole system that combines energy conservation, audio entertainment, traffic control, advertising, homeland security features and more.
Intellistreets amounts to an intelligent wireless network, completely concealed within the street light pole. But it’s far more than a simple street light. Its lighting is variable for energy conservation and theming, reacting to natural light, the environment, and wireless commands. It has sensors to monitor foot and vehicle traffic. And it replaces static vinyl banners typically attached to light poles with LED screens. It can transmit information for emergency alerts, indicate evacuation routes or Amber Alert warnings, or hazardous environment alerts.
The system was invented by Illuminating Concepts founder Ron Harwood, who holds numerous patents in the lighting and multimedia fields.
On Oct. 28, 2011, politicians including Congressman Gary Peters and Farmington Hills Mayor Jerry Ellis headlined a ceremony to officially send the system live on 10 Mile Road in Farmington Hills.

Wow! We have three models to choose from for these new-fangled Intelligence Surveilliance street lamps!

This is how the company Illuminating Concepts describes these new “intelligent” street lights:

Illuminating Concepts, a Farmington Hills, Mich.-based architectural lighting company, revisited the ubiquitous light pole and found vast untapped potential. With a touch of technology, the simple light pole can be transformed into a product that is poised to completely change what is possible in an urban streetscape: Intellistreets.
At its core, Intellistreets is a wireless light pole-based intelligent control system that addresses the needs of the modern cityscape.  The system was designed to provide developers, urban planners and city officials with powerful new tools to enhance public safety, inform residents and visitors, and connect commercial, residential, hospitality and entertainment components. By using light poles as its foundation, the Intellistreets system takes advantage of the vast amount of infrastructure that already exists in cities around the world to transform urban corridors into environments that promote vitality, safety and economic development. …
Unlike other control and energy management systems, the Intellistreets system is intelligent. Not only is it possible to control or schedule functions such as lighting and audio, Intellistreets components can adapt to changes in the environment without any human intervention. If a light pole is damaged, neighboring light poles can route around the damage and continue to function. If communication throughout the system is disrupted for any reason, each light pole has the ability to continue to function independently. The Intellistreetssystem has the ability to learn over time, allowing unprecedented flexibility and automation.
The Intellistreets base system consists of the following components: lighting control, wireless communication, concealed audio and alert indication. Additional digital video signage and data acquisition components are available to further enhance functionality. …
A concealed speaker housed within the base of the light pole provides clear, high-quality, 360-degree dispersion audio without being visible. The audio capabilities of Intellistreetscan be used for many different audio applications, such as background music, paging and announcements, emergency alert information, and even sirens.
The Intellistreets system supports visible LED alert indicators that can easily be programmed for a wide range of uses. Alert indicators can be used to direct people to an exit in the case of an emergency, or could be used to indicate a faulty lamp source to maintenance personnel. Alert indicators can also be used as part of a larger security system to provide safety benefits.
The Intellistreets system offers the ability to add digital video signage in the form of a large LED banner to a light pole, much like the vinyl banners currently seen in city environments. Unlike vinyl banners, LED banners can display a wide variety of continually changing content, including both still images and video. This opens up endless possibilities for revenue generation through advertising, as well as intuitive and localized way-finding and video-based public service announcement.
Data Acquisition
A wide range of sensors can be added to the Intellistreets system, including weather and environmental sensors, toxic gas, radiation and other atmospheric monitoring and alert systems. Footfall sensors can be added to gather and relay valuable information regarding pedestrian traffic, which can assist city planners, managers & DDA directors.  All of this data can be intelligently shared between poles to enable the system to adapt and react by itself, as well as enabling advanced reporting functionality as an adjunct to Homeland Security, emergency management and municipal operations. …
An Idea Whose Time Has Come
With its enhanced energy efficiency capabilities and security benefits, Intellistreets is a natural candidate for stimulus funding, and the system’s unique municipal, educational, commercial, and even military applications are limited only by the imagination. With Intellistreets, Illuminating Concepts has re-imagined the light pole and redefined conventional notions about what is possible in the modern urban landscape.

Yes, indeed! In the name of “safety” and “homeland security,” these “intelligent” street lights will alert and protect us from all sorts of threats and hazards!
We are the Government, and we’re just here to help you! Just sign on the dotted line on this Faustian Bargain contract!
Meanwhile, the powers and capabilities of Government grow ever bigger….
~Eowyn

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My New Hero, Alexis deTocqueville

I had thought Thomas Jefferson to be the wisest, or shall we say able to see what was coming. The more I Quote Alexis deTocqueville, the more I see he was at least on par with Jefferson. Just some quotes. for today.
——————————— Steve  ——————————————

In New England every citizen is instructed in the elements of human knowledge; he is also taught the doctrine and the evidences of his religion; he must know the history of his country and the main features of its Constitution. In Connecticut and Massachusetts you will very seldom find a man whose knowledge of all these things is only superficial, and anybody completely unaware of them is quite an oddity.

The safeguard of morality is religion, and morality is the best security of law as well as the surest pledge of freedom.

Alexis DeTocqueville, French philosopher

The Americans combine the notions of Christianity and of liberty so intimately in their minds, that it is imposible to make them conceive the one without the other.

Alexis DeTocqueville, French philosopher

From the earliest settlement of the emigrants, politics and religion contracted an alliance which has never been dissolved.

Alexis DeTocqueville

I do not question that the great austerity of manners that is observable in the United States arises, in the first instance, from religious faith.

Alexis DeTocqueville

I do not know whether all Americans have a sincere faith in their religion – for who can read the secrets of the heart? – but I am certain that they hold it be indispensable to the maintainance of republican institutions. This opinion is not peculiar to a class of citizens or a party, but it belongs to the whole nation and to every rank of society.

Alexis DeTocqueville

Men think that the greatness of the idea of unity lies in means. God sees it in the end. It is for that reason that the idea of greatness leads to a thousand mean actions. To force all men to march in step toward the same goal – tthat is a human idea. To encourage endless variety of actions but to bring them about so that in a thousand different ways all tend toward the fulfillment of one great design – that is a God-given idea.

Alexis DeTocqueville, French philosopher

…what does decide events, gentlemen, is the essential spirit of the government…for God’s sake, change the spirit of the government, for that spirit, I repeat, is leading you to the abyss.

Alexis DeTocqueville, to a EuropeanChamber of Deputies

Therefore, in all matters concerning the duties of citizens toward each other he (the individual) is subordinate. In all matters that concern himself alone he remains the master; he is free and owes an account of his actions to God alone. From this derives the maxim that the individual is the best and only judge of his own interest and that society has no right to direct his behavior unless it feels harmed by him or unless it needs his concurrence.

Alexis deTocqueville, French philosopher

Do you not see that religions are growing weak and that the conception of the sanctity of rights is vanishing? Do you not see that mores are changing and that the moral conception of rights is being obliterated with them?
Alexis deTocqueville, French philosopher

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