Saturday, July 04, 2009

To All My American Readers...


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.


Happy Independence Day.

25 comments:

londonmuslim said...

many congratulations for kicking the British Empire out

Tory Activist said...

Happy Independence Day from Tory Activist!

londonmuslim said...

rather uncalled for comment Anonymous on today of all days when people March against homophophobia

JMB said...

And an original copy of the Declaration of Independence has been found by the National Archives (seems suspicious that it was found so close to 4th July?).

Man in a Shed said...

It is interesting to think of the early US as being the body that continued the English traditions of freedom against the super national body of Britain.

The early US in in many ways truly the New England, and what England could have been if it hadn't been subsumed into Britain.

Shane O'Neill said...

The Declaration of Independence draws heavily from Catholic teaching. See here:

http://www.catholiceducation.org/articles/politics/pg0003.html

Angela said...

Iain, are you serious? You have made a post quite rightly defending the Conservative position with regard to homosexuals, and then you quote that emotive & inspiring passage from the US Constitution that Obama is studiously ignoring, ie he is not, despite his Democrat majority, repealing anti-gay legislation. Passed by Clinton, incidentally, not any wicked Republican. Best I can do is post a link:
http://www.hurryupharry.org/2009/07/02/obama-vs-gay-america/

I know this will break, but most people will know how to reconstruct it. Please read.

trevorsden said...

@ 'Angela said' ---

As far as Labour are concerned the deep black heart of its grass roots are thoroughly homophobic.

So I would imagine the same it true of the Democrat Party. And lets remember that the Democrat Party is pretty much the same as the Labour party only more left wing.

Tachybaptus said...

'Liberty' -- what was that? I know it used to mean something once, but I've forgotten.

God damn all politicians and their pompous self-serving soundbites.

Anonymous said...

@Shane O' Neill.

Absolute nonsense. You need to read up on the philosophies of the Enlightenment and stop believing every piece of religious propaganda that your church rams down your throat.

The American Declaration of Independence owes infinitely more to the philosophers of the Scottish Enlightenment like David Hume than to any member of the Catholic Church and no amount of wishful thinking to the contrary will change that.

Tory Activist said...

there are some definate lessons from history that can be drawn from American Independence.

Thatsnews said...

Happy 4th of July. Isn't it time America joined the commonwealth?

Daniel Earwicker said...

Happy Birthday, America!

Salmondnet said...

Oh dear. Another wretched good looser. American independence, brought about by an unholy alliance of those rebellious colonists who wanted to expand their empire west against the wishes of King George, and our (and their) natural enemies, the equally imperialist French. Might have been a good idea for the colonists and the French, but it certainly wasn't for us, or for native Americans.

And LondonMuslim, if you so dislike the British Empire, why stay at it's heart. Presumably to stick a knife in it. We don't stop people leaving.

We can learn from the Americans though. To start to value winning. The rest of the world also has a lesson, learn to hold historical grudges, everyone else does.

Freddie said...

Except that its famous nonsense.

There are no universal human rights.
Man lives in a state of nature preying and preyed upon. The strong control the weak except in so far as they grant them enough freedom to prevent them rising up and using their combined strength to overcome the individually strong. Man gains rights only by being in a Society with other men and has such rights as the Society grants. It must police those rights within and protect itself against or agree an accommodation with all other Societies to allow the rights to be relied upon.
It follows that there are no inalienable or universal rights rights as there is no one to grant those rights except the Society which has the political and military power to control the area in which you live.

All the rest is piety.

weggis said...

Freddie @ 11:21

Any life form, man or otherwise, has the potential ability to ensure its own survival and its own “happiness”. Is that a “right” or a given? And what is the difference?

Anonymous said...

Happy independence day. Our American cousins took the old English constitution from Thomas Paine. Much superior to our present constitution.

dorittl said...

@Salmondnet July 04, 2009 10:42 PM.

"We don't stop people leaving"

Tell that to this guy :

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/terror-suspect-wins-battle-to-leave-britain-1731260.html

See, we don't need to learn nuffink from the septics. We can be thoroughly bloody nasty without anyone else's help.

We wrote the manual.

eeyore said...

"How is it we hear the loudest yelps for liberty from the drivers of negroes?" (Dr Johnson)

Pugwash said...

Stuff America, our real Future lies with the East, especially Russia.

Proud to be a Republican said...

Freddie:

Except that its famous nonsense.

There are no universal human rights.
Man lives in a state of nature preying and preyed upon. The strong control the weak except in so far as they grant them enough freedom to prevent them rising up and using their combined strength to overcome the individually strong. Man gains rights only by being in a Society with other men and has such rights as the Society grants. It must police those rights within and protect itself against or agree an accommodation with all other Societies to allow the rights to be relied upon.
It follows that there are no inalienable or universal rights rights as there is no one to grant those rights except the Society which has the political and military power to control the area in which you live.

All the rest is piety.


Ah yes, the famous British complete ignorance of history combined with overwheening arrogance is alive and well and appears to be voting Conservative (so no change there then).

The Declaration of Independence was written by English-educated people and the complaints were directed at Parliament although by convention it was written to the King (the completely ga-ga George III). It is there that you find the phrase about government being by the "consent of the governed" which of course, is anathema to the British Parliament and of course to the British Conservative Party.

I note that "Freddie" appears to imbue "Society" with some mystical quality that means it cannot be examined, democratically accountable or limited in its powers, exactly the issues that vexed the Founding Fathers 200 years ago and just as relevant to today.

Of course, the American republic has waxed to be the most powerful on the Earth, and the British "Society" has shrunk to a middling European power that can be safely tucked in the back pocket of the US President to be used where necessary.

And people like Freddie will make sure that Britain stays that way, because as we all know, there is no alternative to the weak sectarian unthinking Royalist state that is the ludicrously named "United Kingdom".

Little Black Sambo said...

We never used to talk much about rights in this country. That was when we had liberty. Now that our liberty is being taken away, we are being given rights, which are NO SUBSTITUTE.
(As for the "unalienable" kind, if the truths about them were indeed self-evident we should not need to uphold them; they would uphold themselves.)

Proud to be a republican said...

LBS:

That's because you fail to understand the ironic tone of the Declaration of Independence. It was written to be deliberately obtuse and offensive to the British State, by declaring that basic human rights are self-evident they mean "and that's exactly what the British Parliament withholds from ordinary people"

You really ought to read the Declaration some time, instead of allowing someone else to do the thinking for you

Mike Law said...

@ weggis:

Isn't it that a "right" has to be acknowledged, agreed to and adhered to by those participating in the social grouping that has incorporated that "right"?

weggis said...

@ Mike Law

Yes for "social rights", but here we are speaking of "unalienable Rights", "Endowed upon us by our Creator".