Decentralizing the Failed American Republic… ~ “…A crucial thing people don’t know about Jefferson is this: he was fully convinced that freedom in America was fatally wounded—in fact on its deathbed—by 1810 or so. He maintained that he and his fellow founders had blown their opportunity and that American freedom had already slipped away….” – LewRockwell.com
What People Don’t Know
A crucial thing people don’t know about Jefferson is this: he was fully convinced that freedom in America was fatally wounded—in fact on its deathbed—by 1810 or so. He maintained that he and his fellow founders had blown their opportunity and that American freedom had already slipped away.
Now, since what I’ve written above will seem almost inconceivable to many Americans, let me back it up by quoting a few of Jefferson’s letters:
Letter to John Holmes, April 22, 1820:
I regret that I am now to die in the belief that the useless sacrifice of themselves by the generation of 1776, to acquire self-government and happiness to their country, is to be thrown away by the unwise and unworthy passions of their sons, and that my only consolation is to be, that I live not to weep over it.
Letter to Nathaniel Macon, 1821:
Our government is now taking so steady a course as to show by what road it will pass to destruction. That is: by consolidation first, and then corruption, its necessary consequence.
Letter to John Cartwright, June 5, 1824:
Our Revolution presented us an album on which we were free to write what we pleased. Yet we did not avail ourselves of all the advantages of our position… [What we really needed was] to break up all cabals.
Letter to Samuel Johnson, 1823:
I have been criticized for saying that a prevalence of the doctrines of consolidation would one day call for reformation or revolution.
Letter to William B. Giles, 1825:
I see with the deepest affliction, the rapid strides with which the federal branch of our government is advancing towards the usurpation of all the rights reserved to the States, and the consolidation in itself of all powers, foreign and domestic; and that too, by constructions which, if legitimate, leave no limits to their power.
I don’t think any honest reader can see Jefferson’s actual words and still conclude that he’d have any respect at all for the modern US government. And please believe me that there are more passages like these.
While Jefferson was fully convinced that he and his friends had blown their opportunity, he wasn’t one to simply give up. So, in typical fashion, he put together a plan to recreate the republic. And you can find this plan in letters to his friends. (As best I can tell, no one in Washington ever gave them the time of day.)
I’m editing these passages for clarity. You should be able to find the originals online.
This is from a letter to John Tyler, dated May 26, 1810:
I have indeed two great measures at heart, without which no republic can maintain itself in……………
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