Where Are You, Country?

Where are you, country?  Why can’t I find you?  Why have you gone away?

Adapting Cindy Lou’s song about the loss of Christmas spirit in Whoville expresses the sadness for what as been lost in my country. 

When I was a young boy in the small town of Piedmont, Missouri, the local physician, Doc Jones, would come to your house if you were sick.  People paid him in cash, or perhaps some other goods.  No one imagined they had a “right” to have someone else pay Doc Jones.  It was their solemn duty, part of leading a responsible and moral life.  People earned their living, to rely on charity a character stain to be avoided at all costs.

The personal responsibility of those days has become a distant memory.   Now it is called “fair” for much of the population to live at the expense of the rest.  We are informed that some are “entitled” to have the wealth of others “redistributed” to them.  Anyone daring to object to being a serf of the statist elite is called “radical,” and accused of trying to “repeal” the 20th century.  Sometimes, having gone down the wrong path, the only way out is to turn back.  If that is “repeal,” so be it.

The country’s current moral inversion is illustrated by two recent TV interviews.  In the first, the individual talks about how her health insurance is cheaper with an Obamacare subsidy, without a trace of embarrassment, as if the money, instead of being forced from someone else without their consent, came from Barack’s private stash or flowed from some eternal mountain spring. 

The individual in the second interview, who has been assigned by the IRS to man the money pumps on that mountain spring, agonizes over how to pay the new bloated Obamacare premium.  While this person is a real victim, there is no objection or hint of defiance.  This individual, who probably sent her children to anti-bullying classes, allows herself to be bullied by the government.  This is not the spirit of 1776.  I cannot find much of that spirit in my country.

My dad was assigned by the IRS to man one of the small money pumps.  He had a barber shop right on Main Street.  Every year he would carefully figure how much he would send to the IRS, believing they had no right to take whatever they wanted.  He was right.  Government really shouldn’t have that power.  Many of us, like Dad, are victims of the IRS.  At least in those days it didn’t go after the President’s enemies.

The groundwork for this travesty was laid when Dad was only five years old, with the ratification of the 16th amendment.  The income tax erased Constitutional protections of the last 130 years.  A citizen’s property could now be taken without just compensation, without any justification of its use, and without any consideration of equal treatment under the law.  The income tax is incompatible with a free society.  In a truly free society, never would the lead-in to a local tax lawyer’s radio ad be, “If you aren’t afraid of the IRS, you should be.”

Our ancestors would be horrified to hear such an ad, and would be asking, “Where are you, country?  Why can’t I find you?”  Some of them pledged their lives and sacred honor.  We owe it to them to find the free country they knew, and we owe our children, so they may know and value that same liberty.

We have little help finding the country.  Most of the media aren’t interested.  Except for Fox News, newscasts could be mistaken for Democrat Party political ads, and might as well be preceded by; “The following message has been approved by the Propaganda Commissar.” 

Congress is not looking for the country.  They are more interested in getting re-elected or, in case of the Democrats, implementing a forced march to that great utopia in the sky.  Meanwhile, the Republicans relish their victory forcing the Democrats to start the forced march in the afternoon rather than the morning.  Neither have done anything to stop the lawlessness of the Attorney General and the President, who are badly in need of a midnight visit from the ghost of liberty’s past.

The courts have unconditionally surrendered, telling us essentially, “Don’t believe your lying eyes when you read the Constitution.”  This beautiful document does not require a Harvard degree to understand.  The degree is needed to pretend we are still following it.  The Constitution grants the federal government very limited powers.  It does not allow for wealth redistribution, confirmed unequivocally by a 1795 Supreme Court ruling.   Its restriction on religion only applies to Congress.  It doesn’t say that people have no voice in who can marry in their own states.

The Founders would be saying, “Where is our country?”

Those now asking, “Where are you, country?” are Americans like the Tea Party, Constitutionalists, and American Thinkers, who, like Cindy Lou, can see something has been lost.

The Tea Party is named for an act of defiance, something we need more of these days, lest we sink deeper into the progressive swamp. Defiance like the vets dumping the WWII memorial barriers in front of the White House, or Congressman Joe Wilson’s “You lie.”  Defiance like the Austrian crowd singing Edelweiss in The Sound of Music, or the patrons in Rick’s Café in Casablanca chiming in with La Marseillaise, or the Grinch (?).  How about many of us Grinches refusing to participate in Obamacare? 

The old saying could be reworded, “The wheel which doesn’t squeak will never get oiled.”  Productive and responsible Americans have so far gone along without a squeak, giving silent consent to be victims.  Without some Atlas Shrugs acts of defiance, we will become further enslaved and never find the country we love.

Symbolic acts of defiance are not enough where tyranny has already arrived, but may keep it from coming.  The nation needs the loud and continuous noise of defiance while the bums can still be voted out.  Americans who hadn’t noticed may begin to wonder why all the uproar.  Some may begin to say, as in the classic hymn Amazing Grace, “I once was blind, but now I see.”  Then, perhaps, elections will not be decided on some unrealistic and undefined fantasy, or who has that Evita  “little touch of star quality,” but on how to find the liberty that has been lost.  If so, some day our children can sing:

“I feel you country.  I know I've found you.”