After a century long experiment with an alien philosophy of government and economics, Americans are beginning to coming home. We are awakening to our heritage of self-government and personal responsibility. But our experiment with the government welfare state has been expensive. We are now the world’s number one debtor nation with over $100 trillion dollars in unfunded liabilities.
The problem today is that Americans do not know their history and economic heritage. Even Karl Marx, the founder of Communism, said, “A people without a heritage are easily persuaded [controlled].”
Four hundred years ago in Europe and around the globe, economic prosperity was the exclusive right of royalty. It was hard to set up a “McDonalds” on the corner when “Gengis Khan” could come through in the morning, kill your employees and empty your cash drawers. The Pilgrim families in England were experiencing tyranny and economic deprivation on a grand scale. King James I bankrupted the national treasure of England in his first year as king. He squandered the wealth of the people, giving estates and lavish gifts to his favorite courtiers. He stole the Pilgrims wealth and imprisoned their wives and their leaders.
Finally, after exile in Holland for twelve years, the Pilgrims decided to take a desperate risk and immigrate to a remote wilderness. Their first purpose for coming was that they might be economically successful so that others would join them in Christian freedom. Within four months of landing in the wilderness in the dead of winter, half of them had died. They labored under a forced “socialist” economic system of common farming for two years. The result was near starvation.
In 1623 Governor William Bradford took the colony back to the biblical economic plan of private ownership and self-government. Each family was assigned a plot of ground to work and the result was a plentiful crop. Free enterprise was birthed that year and they had a day of thanksgiving to God that fall. We celebrate this turn to free enterprise every year with the great American holiday, Thanksgiving.
One hundred and fifty years later, our Founders, having just stood against the economic and political tyranny of the rogue King George III, wisely created a firewall of freedom – the U.S. Constitution. This document locked down the ability of the national government to take away rights and property (wealth) of the people. It prevented centralization of power by giving the national government only limited powers. On the other hand, the Constitution gave all other powers to the States and the people, ensuring de-centralization of power.
The biblical economics & faith of the founding generations led to the most productive, creative, and honest workforce in all of history. America, with its family centered free enterprise system and entrepreneurship soon began to out-produce and out-invent all other nations of the world, including England. In the 19th century, the standard of living grew by 900%. America became the productive miracle of the ages. How? This economic success was built on an essential moral foundation which permeated the entire fabric of society.
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