Author Topic: The Miracle of Freedom - by Ted Cruz  (Read 3045 times)

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Offline Jim Nunziato

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The Miracle of Freedom - by Ted Cruz
« on: February 13, 2016, 04:53:47 PM »
The Miracle of Freedom
Senator Ted Cruz

Looking back over all of the history of mankind, the miracle of freedom has been the exception. For thousands of years, under all types of governments, emperors, kings & queens, and totalitarian rulers, we were told that power starts at the top and flows down to the people.

In England, where kings and queens ruled for hundreds of years, it was understood that the rights of the people emanate from a monarch and may be taken away at the monarch’s whim. It was the British who began a revolution against that way of thinking as far back as the year 1215, in the unlikely location of a meadow called Runnymede.

It was there that the Magna Carta was created, and which read in part, “To all free men of our kingdom we have also granted, for us and our heirs forever, all the liberties written out below, to have and to keep for them and their heirs….” That revolution fully blossomed over 550-years later in 1787, in Philadelphia in a Constitution that began with two radical premises:`

The first was that our rights come from God, not from kings or queens, emperors or presidents, but directly from God. Our Declaration of Independence reinforced that premise by clearly stating, in writing, “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, and that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”

The second premise in the Constitution dealt with a new idea of sovereignty and the flow of power. They founders stated that power flows not from the top down, but up, from “We the People,” and the governing authority we vest in those in political offices is to be limited to set periods subject to elections.

James Madison clearly understood the frailty of men and their quest for increased power, and he stated his reasoning in Federalist 51 when he wrote, “If men were angels, no government would be necessary…. In framing a government which is to be administered by men over men, the great difficulty lies in this: you must first enable the government to control the governed; and in the next place oblige it to control itself.”

Today, you can be certain that there are no angels in Washington, DC, and that is why Thomas Jefferson said the “chains of the Constitution” should bind the mischief of government.  Because only when government is limited are rights protected, the rule of law honored, and freedom allowed to flourish.

The truth is that freedom works, the proof of that statement is that the American free market system is the greatest engine for prosperity and opportunity that the world has ever seen.  No other nation on Earth has allowed so many millions to come to its shores with nothing and achieve so much.

Prior to the American Revolution, the average human lived on a wage of between one and three dollars a day, no matter what region of the world in which he lived – Europe, Africa, Asia, North or South America. But after the Revolution of 1776, the birth of the American experiment began, and for the first time in the history of the world, per capita income in a few countries began to grow rapidly, and nowhere was that more evident than in these United States.

Because of economic freedom, per capita income in America was, by the 1830’s, the highest in the world, enabling entrepreneurs and small businesses to flourish.  In just the past 200-years, U.S. economic growth rates have far outpaced all others throughout the world, producing per capita incomes equal to about 6-times greater than the world average, and 50% higher than those in Europe.

To put that into a more striking perspective, the United States represents 4.5% of the global population and produces a staggering 22% of the world’s output, and has sustained that level for the past 2-decades despite increasing competition from abroad.

If we step back for a moment to look at the accomplishments of our comparatively new nation, we see that today the U.S. Dollar remains the international reserve currency, and English is the language standard throughout the world of commerce. The strength of our economy permits us to have and maintain the mightiest military the world has ever seen and U.S. culture in TV, film and the Internet is preeminent in the world – with I’m certain, apologies due for some of their content. A disproportionate number of the world’s great discoveries in medicine, pharmaceuticals, electronics, the Internet and other technologies come from America, and contribute to improving, expanding and saving lives.

America is the country where the telephone, automobile, airplane and iPhone were invented, and our technology and spirit of adventure led to having Americans be the first to walk on the moon.

In the political arena, the liberal left seeks to extend the hand of government down to people, to put them on an elevator and pull them up the economic ladder. While their intent may be noble, the reality is that approach never works. Conservatives know and understand that the only way to help people is to provide them the opportunity to access the stairway leading to the top. Conservatives know that the liberal “elevator to success” is broken, and that to reach the top, people have to be given the opportunity to make it on their own, one step at a time.

Today we hear about poverty in our country.  Yes, there are poor people in America, but thanks to our free market system, the average poor American has more living space than the typical non-poor person in Sweden, France, or the United Kingdom. Today, 80% of American households have air conditioning, 96% of poor parents report that their children were never hungry at any time in the preceding year because the family could not afford food.

Of course there remains a great deal of need in America and throughout the world, and if we’re able, we should reach out to our fellow man.  But more and more government has not been and is not the answer or the best approach.  To believe otherwise ignores the fact that all major European nations have higher levels of public spending than does the United States, and yet every one of those countries is poorer than we.

Human beings are not happiest when cared for by the state, and cradle to grave dependency is not an attractive utopia.  Men and women flourish when afforded the equal opportunity to work, create and accomplish without government intrusion.  The question might be asked who cares more for your family, the government or you, even in area like healthcare.

A great example of that may be a story from Texas, when many years ago Senator Phil Gramm, during a hearing on Capitol Hill about socialized medicine, listened as a witness explained that the US government would be best at caring for people. Senator Gramm said, “I care more about my family than anyone else does.” The surprised witness than said, “Oh no, Senator. I care as much about your children.”  Senator Gramm smiled and said, “Really? What are their names?”

Why, over the centuries, have millions risked everything to come to America? It’s not to have dictators, monarchs or presidents tell them how life will be for them. It is precisely because economic freedom and opportunity outperform centralized planning and regulations.

Many of us here today could stand up and tell the story about how an ancestor came to this country risking everything for the freedom and liberty to make something of their lives. We are all children of those who risked everything for liberty – knowing the value of that freedom is now part of our DNA as Americans – valuing our freedom and opportunity above all.

In 1976, Margaret Thatcher delivered her “Britain Awake” speech where she said, “There are moments in our history when we have to make a fundamental choice.  This is one such moment, a moment when our choice will determine the life or death of our kind of society and the future of our children.  Let’s ensure that our children will have cause to rejoice that we did not forsake their freedom. Of course, this places a burden on us, but it is one that we must be willing to bear if we want our freedom to survive.”

It is up to each of us as individuals to continue to carry the torch for freedom, so that we may ensure that America remains a shining city on a hill, a beacon to the world of hope and freedom and opportunity.

Thank you, God bless you, and may God bless America.   
"I never considered a difference of opinion in politics, in religion, in philosophy, as cause for withdrawing from a friend."  Thomas Jefferson

If Hillary was the answer, then it must have been a really stupid question!