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FRIEDMAN FRIDAY Milton Friedman’s video and transcript from C-Span in 1994 Part 2

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Milton Friedman’s video and transcript from C-Span in 1994 Part 2

Milton Friedman on Hayek’s “Road to Serfdom” 1994 Interview 2 of 2

Uploaded on Oct 26, 2011

2nd half of 1994 interview.

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Transcript below:

LAMB: Where did you meet your wife?
FRIEDMAN: In the first course in economics at the University of Chicago in 1932. We took the same course. It was Jacob Viner’s Economic Theory, and, as it happened, Jacob Viner seated his students alphabetically in order to be able to remember their names, and so Rose Director, which was her name, sat next to Milton Friedman. In addition, as Rose always says, she was the only girl in the class at the time.
LAMB: When did you decide to write books together, and how did you separate the responsibility?
FRIEDMAN: Well, that’s very hard to answer. We were married in 1938, six years after we first met, and then we had children. Rose did a wonderful job in really taking care of the house, raising children and being an inspiration to me. But she had a professional career before that. She had written some things and worked in research organizations before that. But it wasn’t until the kids were grown up and off to college that she was able, really, to spend the time working with me. Capitalism and Freedom was based on a series of lectures that I had given at a kind of summer school, and she took those lectures and reworked them into the book, so really she should have been a joint author on that as well.
LAMB: Janet and David?
FRIEDMAN: They’re my children.
LAMB: You dedicate Capitalism and Freedom to them. Where are they?
FRIEDMAN: Janet’s at Davis, Calif. She’s a lawyer, but her husband is a computer specialist who teaches at the Davis Branch of the University of California. My son David is now — well, he’s had a checkered career in the sense that he got a degree in physics, a Ph.D. in physics, but he’s become an economist. He never took a course in economics except over the dinner table.
LAMB: Where is he?
FRIEDMAN: He’s at the University of Chicago in the law school where he does research in law and economics.
LAMB: When did you win the Nobel Prize and for what?
FRIEDMAN: I won the Nobel Prize in 1976, and I won it for none of those things, but for Monetary History of the United States and an earlier book of mine called A Theory of the Consumption Function, which, I may say, are funny things. A Theory of the Consumption Function is, in my mind, the best thing I ever did as a piece of science. Monetary History is undoubtedly the most influential, and Free to Choose is the best selling, so they are not similarly characterized.
LAMB: I’m going to take it even a step lower, if you will. I want you to tell a little bit of the pencil story.
FRIEDMAN: Oh, sure. I’d be delighted to.
LAMB: Your picture on this book has you with a pencil in your hand.
FRIEDMAN: That didn’t originate with me. I got it from Leonard Read, who was the head of the Foundation for Economic Education. It’s used to tell how the market works, and it’s used to tell how people can work together without knowing one another, without being of the same religion or anything. The story starts like this: Leonard Read and I held up a lead pencil — so-called, one of these yellow pencils — and we said, “Nobody knows how to make a pencil. There’s not a single person in the world who knows how to make a pencil.” In order to make a pencil, you have to get wood for the outside. In order to get wood, you have to have logging; you have to have somebody who can manufacture saws. No single person knows how to do all that. What’s called lead inside isn’t lead. It’s graphite. It comes from some mines in Latin America. In order to be able to make a pencil, you’d have to be able to get the lead. The rubber at the tip isn’t really. Nowadays it isn’t even natural rubber, but at the time I was talking, it was natural rubber. It comes from Malaysia, although the rubber tree is not native to Malaysia but was imported into Malaysia by some English botanists. So in order to know how to make a pencil, you would have to be able to do all of these things. There are probably thousands of people who have cooperated together to make that pencil. Somehow or other, the people in South America who dug out the graphite cooperated with the people in Malaysia who tapped the rubber trees, cooperated with maybe the people in Oregon who cut down the trees. These thousands of people don’t know one another. They speak different languages. They come from different religions. They might hate one another if they saw them. What is it that enabled them to cooperate together? The answer is the existence of a market. The answer is the people in Latin America were led to dig out the graphite because somebody was willing to pay them. They didn’t have to know who was paying them; they didn’t have to know what it was going to be used for. All they had to know was somebody was going to pay them. Indeed, going back to Hayek, one of the most important articles he ever wrote — it doesn’t show up in the book — was about the way in which prices are an information mechanism, the role of prices in transmitting information. Let’s suppose there’s a great increase in the demand for graphite. How do people find out about that? Because the people who want more graphite offer a higher price for it. The price of graphite tends to go up. The people in Latin America don’t have to know anything about why the demand went up. Who is it who’s willing to pay the higher price? The price itself transmits the information that graphite is scarcer than it was and more in demand. If you go back to the pencil thing, what brought all these people together was an enormous complex structure of prices — the price of graphite, the price of lumber, the price of rubber, the wages paid to the laborer who did this and so on. It’s a marvelous example of how you can get a complex structure of cooperation and coordination which no individual planned. There was nobody who sat in a central office and sent an order out to Malaysia, “Produce one more thimble of rubber,” or sent a signal. It was the market that coordinated all of this without anybody having to know all of the people involved.
LAMB: How many times have you told that pencil story?
FRIEDMAN: Well, I really haven’t told it that many times. I told it in the TV program and then I told it in the book, but I think this is the third time.
LAMB: You’re living in San Francisco, where we are. What brought you here?
FRIEDMAN: When I reached the age of 65 — I was at that time living in Chicago and teaching in Chicago — I decided I had graded all the exam papers I was going to grade. My wife grew up in Portland, Ore., and she was in love with San Francisco. She tried to move us out here many times during our life together, but she never succeeded until I decided I was going to retire from active teaching. Fortunately, the Hoover Institution at Stanford University offered me the opportunity to be a fellow at Hoover so I could continue my research and writing without doing any teaching.
LAMB: Peter Robinson, who is a “Booknotes” that people will see at another time, said that he got an MBA from Stanford and never once did anybody bring up Adam Smith or Milton Friedman.
FRIEDMAN: I can believe that.
LAMB: Why would that be?
FRIEDMAN: Because you still have, although it’s not the same as it was in 1963 — there’s more tolerance for the kind of ideas I am in favor of. The general academic community is very much socialist in the sense in which Hayek speaks of the socialists. The general academic community, nowadays it’s labeled political correctness. The ideas of Adam Smith, the ideas of Friedrich Hayek, of Milton Friedman are not very congenial to those who believe that the way in which you get things done is by having government come in and do them.
LAMB: You said earlier that you’re an old man. Do you feel like an old man?
FRIEDMAN: Physically at the moment I do, but not intellectually.
LAMB: Why physically?
FRIEDMAN: I recently had an operation on my back, which had some side effects from which I’ve been very slow in recovering.
LAMB: How old are you now?
FRIEDMAN: I’m 82 years old.
LAMB: Other than this operation, do you think differently because you’re an older person?
FRIEDMAN: No, no.
LAMB: Do you have things you want to accomplish?
FRIEDMAN: Absolutely. My wife and I are in the process of trying to write our memoirs.
LAMB: What in that process are you finding? Is it hard?
FRIEDMAN: Yes, because when you start digging back into your past, you find that you’ve forgotten so much and there’s so much to dig out.
LAMB: What’s the purpose of the memoir?
FRIEDMAN: Well, that’s hard to answer. The purpose of the memoirs is we have been very fortunate people. In fact, our tentative title for it is Two Lucky People. We’ve been very fortunate in our life. We’ve had a great deal of activity. We’ve spent a long time. We’ve been able to be at the center. For example, we spent years with the New Deal in Washington. I was involved in wartime research during the war. We’ve lived through and been associated with a lot that has gone on, and we believe that people have forgotten that story. We’re not mostly interested in telling about ourselves, but we want to tell about the world in which we grew up and the world which enabled us, both of whom came from families which by any standard of today would have been regarded as below the poverty level, but neither her family nor mine ever thought of themselves as poor. They weren’t poor. They didn’t have a very high level of income, but they weren’t poor. Unfortunately, the world is moving in a way in which that is no longer likely to be the case. We think maybe we have a story to tell that will be of interest to the public people at large.
LAMB: How are you going about it?
FRIEDMAN: By writing it.
LAMB: Separately, together? Do you dictate?
FRIEDMAN: No, no. In a word processor mostly. Sometimes by hand, but mostly in a word processor. But the way we’ve always done it. We each write parts of it, and then we share it and so on. I don’t believe the problem of collaboration is a very difficult one.
LAMB: How far away are you from completing it?
FRIEDMAN: We’re about halfway through.
LAMB: What size will it be when it’s finished?
FRIEDMAN: I don’t know. At the moment, it’s about their big, but how big it’ll be, I don’t know. We’re up into the 1950s.
LAMB: As you look around today and watch the world move, where are the influences in the society today? Do books influence? Newspapers? Television?
FRIEDMAN: I would say the television has a tremendous influence, but I think books also have an influence. It’s not easy to answer that question. That’s a very sophisticated and subtle question, and I don’t have an easy answer to it. I think experience plays an enormous role. The collapse of the Berlin Wall, for example, was undoubtedly the most influential action for the last hundred years because it put finis to an attitude. The general attitude had been that the future was the future of government, that the way in which you got good things done was by having government do it. I believe the collapse of the Berlin Wall and the exposure of what was happening in Russia, the contrast between East Germany and West Germany has been made a lesson; more recently, the experience of East Asia, of Hong Kong, of Singapore. Today people may not behave in accordance with their knowledge, but everybody knows that the way to develop and to improve the lot of people is through private markets, free enterprise and small government. We’re not practicing what we should be preaching. I’ve been saying that the former communist states are trying as hard as they can to go to where we were 50 years ago, whereas we’re trying as hard as we can to go to where they were 10 years ago.
LAMB: Why?
FRIEDMAN: Because of the inertia and the drive for power. It’s very hard to turn things around. The big problem with government, as Hayek points out, is that once you start doing something, you establish vested interests, and it’s extremely difficult to stop and turn that around. Look at our school system. How is it our school system is worse today than it was 50 years ago? Look at the welfare state. We’ve spent trillions of dollars without any success. But unsuccessful experiments in government — I’ve said if an experiment in private enterprise is unsuccessful, people lose money and they have to close it down. If an experiment in government is unsuccessful, it’s always expanded.
LAMB: What is it that government does that you like?
FRIEDMAN: I would like government to enforce law and order. I would like government to provide the rules, effectively, that guide our life, that determine what’s proper and to do very little other than that.
LAMB: What kind of a grade do you give to the American system of government today? How is it working?
FRIEDMAN: As it was in 1928 or as it is in 1994? It’s a great system. The fundamental system is great, but it hasn’t been working in the last 30 years.
LAMB: Why not?
FRIEDMAN: Because we’ve been departing from its fundamental principles. The founders of country believed in individual freedom, believed in leaving people be, letting them be alone to do whatever they wanted to do. But our government has been increasingly departing from those constitutional principles. You know, there’s a provision in the constitution that Congress shall not interfere with interstate commerce. That provision had some meaning at one time, but it has no meaning now at all. Our courts have ruled that anything you can think of is interstate commerce, and so the government exercises extensive control over things that it has no business interfering with.
LAMB: What do you think of the Federal Reserve Board today?
FRIEDMAN: I’ve long been in favor of abolishing it. There’s no institution in the United States that has such a high public standing and such a poor record of performance.
LAMB: What did Arthur Burns think of that?
FRIEDMAN: He didn’t like that very much, but, needless to say, I didn’t hesitate to say it to him. Look, the federal reserve system was established in 1914, started operation in 1914. It presided over a doubling of prices during World War I. It produced a major collapse in 1921. It had a good period from about 1922 to about 28. Then it undertook actions which led to a recession in 1929 and 30, and it converted that recession by its actions into the Great Depression. The major villain in the Great Depression was, in my opinion, unquestionably the federal reserve system. Since that time, it presided over a doubling of prices during World War II. It financed the inflation of the 1970s. On the whole, it has a very poor record. It’s done far more harm than good.
LAMB: What do you say to the people who say and write that it’s just a matter of time until it all comes tumbling down, meaning the tremendous debt we have in this country will catch up with us.
FRIEDMAN: The debt is not the problem. The debt is not the problem. You’ve got to compare a debt with the assets which correspond to it. It need not come tumbling down. Whether it comes tumbling down will depend on what we do. If we continue to expand the role of government, if we let government grow beyond limit, it will come tumbling down. But that isn’t going to happen. The attitudes of the American people have changed, and they’ve become aware of the fact that government is too big, too intrusive, too extensive, and I have a great deal of confidence in the American people that they’re going to see to it that doesn’t happen.
LAMB: But if you were sitting around with experts in a room and they said, “Let’s look at the future,” where are the problems? We listen every day on the radio and read in the newspapers that it’s just a matter of time.
FRIEDMAN: I think that’s wrong. Fundamentally, what’s been happening is that in the period I talked about from 1928 to now, we have been starving the successful part of our society, namely, the free private enterprise system, and we have been feeding the failure. Government controls over 50 percent of the output of the country, but thank God government is not efficient. Most of that is wasted.
LAMB: Another one of our “Booknotes” guests in this series is John Kenneth Galbraith. If you put the two of you in a room together, which one’s the happiest with what’s happened over the last 50 years?
FRIEDMAN: Ken would be much happier than I would be.
LAMB: Why would he be?
FRIEDMAN: Because he’s a socialist.
LAMB: Why do you think he’s happier and why do you think his side’s been more successful?
FRIEDMAN: Because the story they tell is a very simple story, easy to sell. If there’s something bad, it must be an evil person who’s done it. If you want something done, you’ve got to do it. You’ve got to have government step in and do it. The story Hayek and I want to tell is a much more sophisticated and complicated story, that somehow or other there exists this subtle system in which, without any individual trying to control it, there is a system under which people in seeking to promote their own interests will also promote the well-being of the country — Adam Smith’s invisible hand. Now, that’s a very sophisticated story. It’s hard to understand how you can get a complex interrelated system without anybody controlling it. Moreover, the benefits from government tend to be concentrated; the costs tend to be disbursed. To each farmer, the subsidy he gets from the government means a great deal. To each of a much larger number of consumers, it costs very little. Consequently, those who feed at the trough of government tend to be politically much more powerful than those who provide it with the wherewithal.
LAMB: During your lifetime, who are the leaders you think have been the most loyal to their beliefs and have done the best job?
FRIEDMAN: I would certainly put Ronald Reagan high on that list.
LAMB: What do you say to David Frum’s thesis? Have you read Dead Right?
FRIEDMAN: Yes. He’s quite right. I agree with it.
LAMB: That conservatives basically buy off now . . .
FRIEDMAN: I’m not a conservative. I never have been a conservative. Hayek was not a conservative. The book that follows this one in Hayek’s list was The Constitution of Liberty, a great book, and he has an appendix to it entitled “Why I Am not a Conservative.” We are radicals. We want to get to the root of things. We are liberals in the true meaning of that term — of and concerned with freedom. We are not liberals in the current distorted sense of the term — people who are liberal with other people’s money.
LAMB: You write about Thomas Jefferson. What was he?
FRIEDMAN: I would certainly put him very high on the list. He was a great man. There’s no question about that, and he was certainly a believer in freedom. He was not a conservative.
LAMB: Would he have been a liberal?
FRIEDMAN: Yes, in my sense, not in the corrupted sense of today.
LAMB: But what’s confusing as you watch today’s people who embrace him, you have the Jefferson-Jackson dinners every year for the Democratic Party, and Lincoln is embraced by both sides. What was he?
FRIEDMAN: He’s much more difficult to characterize because his role in our history had to do with the Civil War, and that’s not something to be characterized in terms of socialist or liberal or conservative.
LAMB: Is Thomas Jefferson a Democrat as we know the Democratic Party today?
FRIEDMAN: No, he would not.
LAMB: What would he be today?
FRIEDMAN: He would be a libertarian.
LAMB: A member of the Libertarian Party?
FRIEDMAN: Not necessarily. See, I’m a libertarian in philosophy, but, as I say, I’m a libertarian with a small “l” and a Republican with a capital “r.”
LAMB: You supported and were close to Barry Goldwater.
FRIEDMAN: Yes, I was.
LAMB: What was he?
FRIEDMAN: A libertarian in philosophy, not in party.
LAMB: What is Bill Clinton?
FRIEDMAN: Oh, he’s a socialist.
LAMB: Defined as being what?
FRIEDMAN: As somebody who believes that the way to achieve good things is to have government do it. You can’t think of a more socialist program than the health care program that he tried to get us to adopt.
LAMB: You said earlier in the discussion when we were talking about Rutgers that the worst way to go is to take care of the bottom up. Explain that.
FRIEDMAN: Not to take care of them in the sense of giving them a minimum income, but to believe that the progress of society is going to come from the bottom.
LAMB: So how do you take care of someone who is in the lower third?
FRIEDMAN: In my book Capitalism and Freedom I propose something called a negative income tax, of getting rid of all of the welfare programs we now have, but replace them by essentially a minimum income.
LAMB: But you also say that’s not going to happen very quickly.
FRIEDMAN: Well, we’re moving toward that. The earned income credit is in that line.
LAMB: What will that do?
FRIEDMAN: What we’re not going to move toward, the place we’re wrong is with all of the special welfare programs we have — food stamps, aid to families with dependent children. There are probably a hundred such programs, and what I’ve argued is that we ought to replace that whole ragbag of programs with a single negative income tax.
LAMB: In your lifetime, have you ever had a theory that proved to be wrong? Do you ever go back and say, “I was wrong”?
FRIEDMAN: Oh, yes, sure.
LAMB: What was it?
FRIEDMAN: During World War II when I was at the Treasury, I was essentially a Keynesian, as I believed that the way to control inflation was by controlling government spending. I paid very little attention to money. Only after World War II when I started to work in the field of money did I come to a different conclusion. Now, I believe Keynes was a great man. He was a great economist, but I think his theory is wrong.
LAMB: And his theory, basically stated, is?
FRIEDMAN: Basically stated, the fundamental element of it, is that what matters is spending and what matters in particular is government spending and that government must play a major role in guiding the society. He was a liberal in the 19th century sense, but he was also an elitist, and he believed that there was a group of able public-spirited intellectuals who should be given charge of society.
LAMB: When people look at Milton Friedman 25 years from now — you’ll probably still be here . . .
FRIEDMAN: I won’t be here.
LAMB: What do you want them to remember? Do you want them to remember you as a writer, as a teacher, as a philosopher, as an economist?
FRIEDMAN: Again, I want them to remember me as an economist.
LAMB: And what principle do you want them to remember the most?
FRIEDMAN: That’s hard to say because there are quite a number. I mentioned The Theory of the Consumption Function, which is a very technical book but which yet, I believe, has had a good deal of influence within the discipline of economics. But I really don’t know how to answer that question. I think that people 25 years from now will have to answer it, not me.
LAMB: Milton Friedman has been our guest, and he wrote the introduction of this 50th anniversary edition of F. A. Hayek’s book The Road to Serfdom, and he has a few books of his own. We thank you very much for joining us.
FRIEDMAN: Very nice to be here.
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FRIEDMAN FRIDAY Milton Friedman’s video and transcript from C-Span in 1994 Part 1

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Milton Friedman’s video and transcript from C-Span in 1994 Part 1

Milton Friedman on Hayek’s “Road to Serfdom” 1994 Interview 1 of 2

Transcript below:

BRIAN LAMB, HOST: Dr. Milton Friedman, why did you choose or why did they ask you to write the introduction to the F. A. Hayek Road to Freedom 50th anniversary . . .
FRIEDMAN: Road to Serfdom.
LAMB: Yes, that’s your title on your book. Why did you do it?
FRIEDMAN: The reason they asked me was very clear, because Hayek and I had been associated for a very long time, in particular in an organization called the Mont Pelerin Society that he founded. The charter meeting was in 1947 in Switzerland. Hans Morgenthau, who was a professor at the University of Chicago when I was there, a political scientist, when I came back from the meeting, he asked me where I had been, and I told him that I had been to a meeting that had been called by Hayek to try to bring together the believers in a free, open society and enable them to have some interchange, one with another. He said, “Oh, a meeting of the veterans of the wars of the 19th century!” I thought that was a wonderful description of the Mont Pelerin Society. Well, Hayek and I worked together in the Mont Pelerin Society and we were fostering essentially the same set of ideas. His Road to Serfdom book, the one you have there, which was published 50 years ago, was really an amazing event when it came out. It’s very hard to remember now what the attitude was in 1944-45. Throughout the Western world, the movement was toward centralization, planning, government control. That movement had started already before World War II. It started, really with the Fabian Society back in the late 19th century-George Bernard Shaw, the Webbs and so on. But the war itself and the fact that in war you do have to have an enormous amount of government control greatly strengthened the idea that after the war what you needed was to have a rational, planned, organized, centralized society and that you had to get rid of the wastes of competition. That was the atmosphere. Those of us who didn’t agree believed in what we would call a liberal society, a free society — 19th century liberalism. There were quite a number of us in the United States and in Britain, but in the rest of the world they were very isolated, indeed. Hayek’s idea was to bring them together and enable them to get comfort and encouragement from one another without having to look around to see who was trying to stab them in the back, which was the situation in their home countries.
LAMB: The New York Times put on the op-ed page your introduction to this edition. Do you know why they did that? What got their attention?
FRIEDMAN: I can’t answer that. You’d have to ask the people at the New York Times. On the whole, they have in the past not been very favorable to these ideas — quite the contrary — but they’ve been changing. About two or three years ago, they published — they’ve turned many an op-ed piece from me, which I subsequently published in the Wall Street Journal or somewhere else. But a couple of years ago, they did publish an op-ed piece from me about the situation after the fall of the Berlin Wall, in which my thesis was a very simple one. Everybody agrees, as a result of the experience in the West, that socialism has been a failure. Everybody agrees that capitalism has been a success, that wherever you have had an improvement in the conditions of the ordinary people over any lengthy time, it’s been in a capitalist society, and yet everybody is extending socialism. After the fall of the Berlin Wall, there were no summits in Washington about how we cut down government. The lesson from the fall of the Berlin Wall was that we have too extensive a government and we ought to cut it down. Everybody agrees, but yet wherever you go, we have to extend socialism. The summit in Washington was about how you enable government to get more revenue in order for government to be more important, which is exactly the opposite. So socialism guides our behavior in strict contrast to what we believe to be the facts of the world.
LAMB: Let me ask you a little bit more about Friedrich Hayek. Who was he?
FRIEDMAN: Fritz Hayek was an economist. He was born in Vienna. He started his professional career in Vienna. In the late 1920s, some people in Britain at the London School of Economics were very greatly impressed with the book he had written and with the work he had done, and they invited him to come to the London School. At a relatively young age, he became a professor at the London School of Economics. He spent the 30s and most of the 40s there. Early in the 1950s, he left London and came to the University of Chicago where he was a professor for about 10 years, and then he went back to Germany. He essentially retired to the University of Freiberg in Germany.
LAMB: How long has he been dead?
FRIEDMAN: He’s been dead about two years now, I think. He lived to be 90, and he has an enormous list of books and articles and so on he has published. The Road to Serfdom, the one we’re showing here, was a sort of manifesto and a call to arms to prevent the accumulation of a totalitarian state. One of the interesting things about that book is whom it’s dedicated to. It’s dedicated “to the socialists of all parties,” because the thesis of the book is that socialism is paving the way toward totalitarianism and that Socialist Russia, at the time, is not different from Nazi Germany. Indeed, it was national socialism — that’s where “nazi” comes from. This was a kind of manifesto and had a very unexpected effect. It was turned down by several publishers in the United States before the University of Chicago published it, and both in Britain and the United States, it created something of a sensation. It was a best-seller. The Reader’s Digest published a condensation of it and distributed 600,000 copies. You had a big argument raising about people who were damning it as reactionary against all the good things of the world and people who were praising it and showing what the real status was. It’s a book well worth reading by anybody because there’s a very subtle analysis of why it is that well-meaning people who intend only to improve the lot of their fellows tend to favor courses of action which have exactly the opposite effect. I think from my point of view the most interesting chapter in that book is one labeled “Why the Worst Get on Top.” It’s, in a way, another example of the famous statement of Lord Acton that “power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”
LAMB: Lord Acton’s quoted several times in the book.
FRIEDMAN: Oh, sure. Lord Acton was a great defender of a free society. The way the worst rise to the top is that if you’re given power and you have to exercise it, you are driven by that necessity to do things that many people really would object to doing. Only those people who are willing to behave in a public capacity differently than they would behave in their private capacity are ever going to make it to the top.
LAMB: Who was Lord Acton? G: Lord Acton was an English Catholic who was a great historian. He was a professor at Oxford. He had a named professorship, which I’ve forgotten. He wrote A History of Liberty, which was very famous and very important. He also was very much involved — this has nothing to do with this, really — in the dispute within the Catholic church about the infallibility of the pope. What do they call it when they call one of these . . .
LAMB: Encyclical?
FRIEDMAN: It’s a meeting which establishes a policy.
LAMB: Like Vatican II?
FRIEDMAN: Right. One of those in the end of the 19th century was the one at which they declared the doctrine of the infallibility of the pope, and he fought very hard against that because he was a believer in liberty and freedom and tolerance and did not believe that you should declare any man to be infallible.
LAMB: Why is it that so many conservatives today will cite you but also cite Hayek?
FRIEDMAN: Because, as I said in that introduction, over the years I’ve gone around and asked people who had shifted from a belief in central government and socialism and what today goes by the name of liberalism what led them to shift, what led them to an understanding that that was a wrong road. Over and over again, the answer has been The Road to Serfdom.
LAMB: You wrote an introduction in 1971?
FRIEDMAN: I wrote an introduction to a German edition 25 years ago. It was the 25th anniversary. My introduction here is primarily the same one. It’s just as applicable now as it was then. The really troublesome thing is what I mentioned earlier. Everybody is persuaded that socialism is a failure, and yet in practice we keep moving down the socialist road. When Hayek’s book was published in 1944 — or let’s take not 44, but take 46 or 50 just after the end of the war — government was much smaller in the United States than it is today. If I remember the numbers, government spending at all levels, for federal, state and local, was about 25 percent of the national income. Today it’s 45 percent. That doesn’t allow for the effect, not of spending, but of regulations — the Clean Air Act, the Aid to Disabilities Act and so on — so that, in fact, we are more than half socialist today; that is, more than half of the total output of the country is being distributed in a way that is determined by the government. That’s the regulations. We pride ourselves on being a free society and having a great deal of liberty. We do, compared to many countries of the world. But just consider the limitations on our freedom. You can’t choose what profession to go into. You can’t become a lawyer just because you want to become a lawyer. You have to get approval from the government. You have to get a license. That’s true for beauticians; it’s true for plumbers. It’s true in New York City and most big cities for taxicab drivers. There are enormous limitations on what we can do, and this goes much beyond the direct economic sphere. Consider the question of freedom of speech. During the 1950s, 60s and 70s when there was a big problem of inflation, the government was making a big push about selling savings bonds. They were a gyp. The amount you paid for the savings bond you would never get back in purchasing power. If you held a savings bond for 25 years, at the end of the time when you turned it in, not only was the purchasing power because of inflation less than it had been, but to add insult to injury, you had to pay a tax on the so-called income from it. At the same time, leading bankers would join in advertisements in the newspapers telling everybody to buy savings bonds. I went around and asked bank presidents that I knew why they did that. I asked them first, “Do you buy savings bonds for yourself?” “Oh, no.” “Is it a good investment?” “No.” “Why do you tell the public it is?” “Because the Treasury wouldn’t like it if we didn’t.” They’re not free to speak. I know from experience — I happen to be opposed to tenure in universities. But the only academics who are free to speak that way are people who have permanent tenure and on the verge of retirement. If you look at it from that point of view, there are enormous restrictions on what we can do and say, all imposed by the government. That doesn’t count the loss of freedom from the fact that they take money away from hard-working, productive people who are producing this national income and give it to people who are out of work, who are on welfare, or in prisons for that matter. It doesn’t include the corruption in our personal property rights that arises through the attempt to prohibit drugs, which has led to tremendous invasions on our liberty. You can have a drug enforcement person come to your door and knock on you because some unknown person has said you’re dealing with drugs. There are many absolutely heartbreaking cases of innocent people whose rights have been violated in this way, whose property has been taken away and who have been unable to regain it. I’m a very old man, and I was graduated from high school in 1928. That’s a long time ago. Now, if you look at the situation in 1928, we were much poorer in terms of physical goods. We didn’t have microwave, we didn’t have washing machines — you can go down the line. There’s no question that we’re enormously wealthier today in that sense and enormously have a higher standard of living from that point of view. On the other hand, we were safer, more secure, freer in 1928 than we are now. As of that time, government was spending something like 10 to 15 percent of the national income; the private sector, 85 to 90. Today, government controls over half the national income and private enterprise controls only the rest. Where have all these good things come from? Can you name any of those additions to our well-being that have come from government? It wasn’t government that produced the microwave. It wasn’t government that produced the improved automobiles. It wasn’t government that produced computers that led to the information age. On the other hand, consider our problems. Our major problems are not economic. Our major problems are social. Our major problems are the underclass in the center cities, the development of crime so that today we’re much less safe than we were when I graduated high school. We have much less feeling of security, much less optimism about what the future’s going to be like, and all of the problems have been produced but government. Consider the schools. The quality of schooling I got in a public high school in 1928 was almost surely a great deal higher than you can get in any but a small number of schools now. You have the dropouts, you have the decline in scores on SAT and the like. Why? Because education is the most socialized industry in the United States. Ninety percent of our kids are in public schools, ten percent in private, and education is a completely centralized, socialized system, and it behaves just the way every other socialized system does. It produces a low-quality output, benefits a small number of people — currently mostly those who are associated with the National Education Association, the American Federation of Teachers — and does a great deal of harm to a lot of people.
LAMB: Let me ask you about your own beginning. Where were you born?
FRIEDMAN: I was born in Brooklyn, but I had sense enough to move out when I was 13 months old.
LAMB: What did your parents do then?
FRIEDMAN: My parents moved to Rahway, N.J., and they were small-scale businessmen who never had an income and by today’s standard would have exceeded the poverty standard. They moved to Rahway, N.J., where they at first had a small textile factory, and then that wasn’t very successful and so they opened a small retail store and that was the source of their income.
LAMB: What influence did they have on what you decided to do for college?
FRIEDMAN: Very little, except for the fact that they encouraged me to want to go to college. As it happened, my father died before I had graduated from high school. I had three sisters and myself. I was the youngest, and I was the only one of the four who went to college.
LAMB: Where did you go?
FRIEDMAN: Rutgers University.
LAMB: A state school.
FRIEDMAN: No, at that time it was not. Rutgers is a very old institution that was established before the Revolution by the Dutch Reform Church, and at the time I went to it, it was really entirely a private school. Only subsequently was it converted into one of the mega state universities.
LAMB: What did you study?
FRIEDMAN: Hold on. However, I was able to go to it because of an action of the state. The state of New Jersey at that time offered scholarships on a competitive basis. Had a series of exams, and the people who succeeded in those exams and who could demonstrate financial need received free tuition at Rutgers. It was because of that that I was able to go to Rutgers. Now, the tragedy. At the time, that was a very valuable thing. The tragedy is that the state of New Jersey in their new incarnation now has a similar program, but the qualification for getting a scholarship is below average academic quality. It’s a program to raise the lesser qualified. It typifies what’s happened in our society. Instead of emphasizing strengthening the opportunities open to the able, we have tended increasingly to shift into a state of victims in which the emphasis is on raising the people at the bottom. Now, no social progress has ever come from the bottom up. It’s always come from the top small number pulling up the society as a whole and raising it.
LAMB: When did you first get into economics?
FRIEDMAN: I went to Rutgers and I did a joint major at the time in economics and mathematics.
LAMB: Why did you pick it? Do you remember?
FRIEDMAN: No. I liked mathematics and I was good at mathematics and I wanted to be able to earn an income. I may say, I worked my way through school, of course. I earned my own income. I wanted to be able to earn an income. As an innocent youth, the only way I knew that you could use mathematics to earn an income was in actuarial work for insurance companies, and so that was my initial objective. How I got into economics, I don’t know, but somehow or other I did get into economics. Now, by the time I graduated in 1932, the situation was very different. We were in the midst of the worst depression we’ve ever had. The major problems of the country were economic, and it’s natural that I would have been interested. As it happened, I was very lucky. When I graduated in 32, I was able to get the offer of two tuition scholarships, one from Brown University in applied mathematics and one from University of Chicago in economics, and it’s easy to know why I took the economics at that time.
LAMB: How many books have you written?
FRIEDMAN: Oh, I don’t know, 15.
LAMB: The best seller?
FRIEDMAN: The best seller is undoubtedly Free To Choose, which was written by myself and my wife. It was based on the TV program of the same title. It was a 10-part TV program that was shown in 1980 on PBS. In reverse of the usual procedure, the TV program wasn’t based on the book; the book was based on the TV program, because I insisted that I was not going to talk to a written script for the TV program but I was just going to talk. Then from the transcript of the TV program, we developed the book. It’s undoubtedly the best seller, although the other you have there, Capitalism and Freedom — again, this is a very interesting contrast. That back was published in 1963. At the time it was published, it was so out of favor, so much outside the intellectual atmosphere of the time that it was not reviewed in any major paper or magazine, other than the Economist in London. It was not reviewed by the New York Times, by the then Herald Tribune, Time, Newsweek. None of them reviewed it, and yet over the subsequent 30 years, it has sold something like a half a million copies.
LAMB: The tie you have on . . .
FRIEDMAN: That’s Adam Smith’s tie.
LAMB: Adam Smith comes up in all your books.
FRIEDMAN: Oh, of course. Adam Smith was the founder of modern economics.
LAMB: When did he live?
FRIEDMAN: In the 18th century. Adam Smith’s great book The Wealth of Nations was published in 1776, the same year as the Declaration of Independence.
LAMB: When did you first read it?
FRIEDMAN: In college as an undergraduate.
LAMB: Is he the guy who’s most important in your education?
FRIEDMAN: Well, that’s very hard to say. He certainly had a major influence on all of us, but after all, I think the influence when you get an education comes from people who are living people, not from books. Books influence you. There’s no doubt about it. They make a great difference. But the person who is probably most important in my education — there are several. One is Arthur Burns, who was subsequently chairman of the Federal Reserve System and so on. He was at Rutgers, and he taught me as an undergraduate and he was really my mentor for a large part of my professional career. I owe a great deal to Arthur. But then I went to the University of Chicago and there was a group of teachers at the University of Chicago — Jacob Viner, Frank Knight, Henry Simons — who played a major influence in shaping my views and attitudes.
LAMB: When did you think you had enough independent thought to start writing books like Free to Choose and Capitalism and Freedom?
FRIEDMAN: That was very late. Up until that point, prior to that, my writings were scientific. See, these books give a misleading impression of my publications. Most of my publications are technical, scientific, economic publications, which really do not have any great interest to the public at large. That’s a best-seller, Free to Choose, but there’s no question that the most influential book I’ve written is not Free to Choose, but a book that sold probably one-twentieth as many, 5 percent as many copies, namely A Monetary History of the United States, which I wrote jointly with Anna Schwartz. So I really had a fairly large body of technical economic literature before I started writing on public policy.
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Open letter to George F. Will concerning Donald Trump!!!

The following was emailed to George F. Will on 6-27-16:

Scott Ableman / Wikimedia

Dear Mr. Will,
I really enjoyed your You Tube cllip “George Will Keynotes 2010 Milton Friedman Prize Dinner:” If you google ARKANSAS MILTON FRIEDMAN you will be brought to my website http://www.thedailyhatch.org since I have written so many posts on my economic hero MILTON FRIEDMAN and his film series FREE TO CHOOSE.  Some of my favorite episodes are now on my blog: “The Failure of Socialism” and “What is wrong with our schools?”  and “Created Equal”  and  From Cradle to Grave, and – Power of the Market.

Since we have a choice this year between the ultra liberal Clinton and the moderate to conservative Trump, I was sad to read the following:

Conservative commentator George Will, who frequently has been critical of Donald Trump, said Friday that he is leaving the Republican Party because of its impending nomination of the New York businessman. 
Let me make a few observations on you first then I will turn to Donald Trump.
First, your comments only help Donald Trump. Do you think he is sad to lose the support of Jeb Bush and Mitt Romney also? Trump is energized by those who have had it with  the mainstream of the Republican Party!!! Can you tell me why the Republicans never once made President Obama decide on lower spending amounts versus shutting the government down in the last 8 years? It was probably because of lukewarm conservative leadership such as Mitch  Mcconnell and John Boehner.
Second, Tim Wildmon of the AMERICAN FAMILY ASSOCIATION like me was a supporter of Ted Cruz, but he recently noted that if you wanted to get your house fixed up you may disappointed that Trump may do a mediocre job but in comparison Clinton would burn your house to the ground. Wildmon’s real world example  was the current state of affairs at the Supreme Court where there are several aging justices and presently there are 4 conservatives and 4 liberals on the court.
Third, just like Donald Trump you look at the world in a secular way and personally that always ends with the cry VANITY, VANITY, ALL IS VANITY.
In the article, “The Conservative Agnosticism of George Will,” by ROBERT LONG

I approach the question of religion and American life from the vantage point of an expanding minority. I am a member of a cohort that the Pew public-opinion surveys call the “nones.” Today, when Americans are asked their religious affiliation, 20%—a large and growing portion—say “none.”

Evidently you and Donald Trump do have this in common because you both look at the world from a secular point of view. Let me challenge you to answer this one question:
IS THE BIBLE HISTORICALLY ACCURATE?
Of course, if the Bible is accurate then why not take a closer at the claims of Christ?
 Below is a portion of your most recent article:
 “Every republic,” writes Charles Kesler, professor of government at Claremont McKenna College, “eventually faces what might be called the Weimar problem.” It arrives when a nation’s civic culture has become so debased that the nation no longer has “the virtues necessary to sustain republican government.”
 ….When asked in a 1990 Playboy interview about his historical role models, he mentioned Winston Churchill but enthused about others who led “the ultimate life”:“I’ve always thought that Louis B. Mayer led the ultimate life, that Flo Ziegfeld led the ultimate life, that men like Darryl Zanuck and Harry Cohn did some creative and beautiful things. The ultimate job for me would have been running MGM in the ’30s and ’40s — pre-television.” Yes, that job, not the one he seeks.
A FEW OBSERVATIONS ON YOUR OBSERVATIONS ON TRUMP:
FIRST POINT, you are correct that our country has arrived at the point where Francis Schaeffer observed when he said that the Christian Consensus is gone and we live in a Post Christian society. In your article you cited a quote that makes this same point:  
It arrives when a nation’s civic culture has become so debased that the nation no longer has “the virtues necessary to sustain republican government.”
Maybe that is the reason we have been drawn now to a secular man such as Trump. I consider myself an expert on secularism because I have studied it so long. Thirty years ago the christian philosopher and author Francis Schaeffer (1912-1984) died and on the 10th anniversary of his passing in 1994 I wrote a number of the top evolutionists, humanists and atheistic scholars in the world and sent them a story about Francis Schaeffer in 1930 when he left agnosticism and embraced Christianity. I also sent them  a cassette tape with the title “Four intellectual bridges evolutionists can’t cross” by Adrian Rogers (1931-2005) and some of the top  scholars who corresponded with me since that time include Ernest Mayr (1904-2005), George Wald (1906-1997), Carl Sagan (1934-1996),  Robert Shapiro (1935-2011), Nicolaas Bloembergen (1920-),  Brian Charlesworth (1945-),  Francisco J. Ayala (1934-) Elliott Sober (1948-), Kevin Padian (1951-), Matt Cartmill (1943-) , Milton Fingerman (1928-), John J. Shea (1969-), , Michael A. Crawford (1938-), (Paul Kurtz (1925-2012), Sol Gordon (1923-2008), Albert Ellis (1913-2007), Barbara Marie Tabler (1915-1996), Renate Vambery (1916-2005), Archie J. Bahm (1907-1996), Aron S “Gil” Martin ( 1910-1997), Matthew I. Spetter (1921-2012), H. J. Eysenck (1916-1997), Robert L. Erdmann (1929-2006), Mary Morain (1911-1999), Lloyd Morain (1917-2010),  Warren Allen Smith (1921-), Bette Chambers (1930-),  Gordon Stein (1941-1996) , Milton Friedman (1912-2006), John Hospers (1918-2011), and Michael Martin (1932-).
SECOND POINT, you quote Trump’s PLAYBOY MAGAZINE interview and that revealed Trump’s longing for satisfaction and his yearning to live THE ULTIMATE LIFE. The funny thing is that King Solomon (just like PLAYBOY’S FOUNDER Hugh Hefner) tried to do  that very thing 3000 years ago when he looked for SATISFACTION and he limited himself to finding it UNDER THE SUN without God in the picture. Recently I wrote Mick Jagger about this very thing and I wanted to share that with you below. Thanks again for your time.

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher, everettehatcher@gmail.com, http://www.thedailyhatch.org, cell ph 501-920-5733, Box 23416, LittleRock, AR 72221

February 6, 2016

Dear Mick,

I was prompted to write you again after the horrible month of January saw the passing of 3 legendary rockers (David Bowie [1-8-47 to 1-10-16], Glenn Frey [11-6-48 to 1-18-16] and Paul Kantner [3-17-41 to 1-28-16] ). I know that you have been searching your whole life for the meaning of life and the secret of satisfaction and with the help of King Solomon and Kerry Livgren of the rock group KANSAS I wanted to pass along their conclusions.

I thought of you recently when I listened to a cassette tape of a sermon by Dan Jarrell of FELLOWSHIP BIBLE CHURCH in Little Rock entitled THE PLEASURE IS MINE on ECCLESIASTES 2:1-26 (4-21-96). It was hard for me to obtain a cassette tape player but I searched through my attic and found one hidden away.

As you know the Book of Ecclesiastes was written by King Solomon at the end of his life and he was discussing LIFE UNDER THE SUN. I think it is easy to compare your life to Solomon since you both are pursuing satisfaction in this life UNDER THE SUN without God in the picture. 

Francis Schaeffer noted that Solomon took a look at the meaning of life on the basis of human life standing alone between birth and death “under the sun.” This phrase UNDER THE SUN appears over and over in Ecclesiastes. The Christian Scholar Ravi Zacharias noted, “The key to understanding the Book of Ecclesiastes is the term UNDER THE SUN — What that literally means is you lock God out of a closed system and you are left with only this world of Time plus Chance plus matter.”

Here is a portion of the sermon by Dan Jarrell below:

You and I grew up with Mick Jagger singing “I CAN’T GET NO SATISFACTION.” You think of the lyrics of that song and what Jagger and the ROLLING STONES did. They summarized this philosophy that no matter how hard I tried, no matter how hard I seek it, no matter what I attempt to do, no matter which avenue I go down, there is no personal satisfaction in it for me. Personal satisfaction eludes me because I try and I try and I try but I can’t get no, no, no, no, hey, hey , hey. I just can’t get no satisfaction.

That is the idea  Mick Jagger and the rest of the ROLLING STONES and an entire generation that cut it’s teeth on rock and roll never got past the frustration of that song. We tried, and we tried and we tried. We tried DRUGS, and ALCOHOL. We tried SEX in a permissive moral society. We tried EDUCATION. We tried CORPORATE ACHIEVEMENT. We tried MATERIAL DECADENCE. We tried EMPIRE BUILDING. We have even tried HUMANISTIC SPIRITUALITY. We tried anything that would move us toward satisfaction, but the result of it all is no lasting satisfaction. Even our greatest pleasures lose their luster. Life is a vapor!!!! GONE WITH THE WIND!!!

I suppose the wisdom of ECCLESIASTES could have been the inspiration for the ROLLING STONES song that marked our generation if it were not for one significant detail. You see Solomon tried and he tried and he tried but the conclusion of his song was I FOUND THE KEY TO SATISFACTION. All the things he tried didn’t get him there but those experiences led him full circle to a conclusion that he began his reign with and apparently he ended with as well.

I really believe if MICK JAGGER or if any of us for that matter would listen to Solomon’s wisdom he will teach us a different song to sing, a new chorus that will mark a new generation.  Solomon will show us the key to satisfaction and he warns us of counterfeits. This is the way to go but beware of this that the vapors of life are there and pursue that and you will be CHASING THE WIND.

WHAT WAS SOLOMON’S ANSWER?  Ecclesiastes chapter 2 gives us that answer. This chapter is a discussion of life’s frustrations. Let me start with the conclusion of chapter 2 and then we will go back and look at life’s frustrating moves toward that conclusion. 

Ecclesiastes 2:24-25 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

24 There is nothing better for a man than to eat and drink and tell himself that his labor is good. This also I have seen that it is from the hand of God. 25 For who can eat and who can have enjoyment without Him?

There is some disagreement on the translation of this particular phrase “There is nothing better for a man” The NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE translates it as a comparison. The idea is if you think of all the good things that a man could enjoy there is nothing better for a man or a woman than to eat or to drink and tell themselves their labor is good. In other words, it is good for us. 

The Hebrew seems to indicate we may want to translate it this way. “There is nothing in a man to eat and drink and tell himself his labor is good.” In other words, IT IS IMPOSSIBLE FOR US, FOR THAT IS FROM THE HAND OF GOD. In other words, it is either a comparison or a simple statement. Either way this is the sense of the passage. 

Either way you translate it, it says nothing is so good for us other than a satisfied life but nothing is as impossible for us because it is not in us to be satisfied for who can eat and enjoy life without him?  The answer is NOBODY CAN!!!! So you come down to the idea that if one seeks satisfaction they will never find it. In fact, every pleasure will be fleeting and can not be sustained, BUT IF ONE SEEKS GOD THEN ONE FINDS SATISFACTION. That is my sermon in a nutshell. That is the conclusion. 

___

Just like Dan Jarrell I also loved the song I CAN’T GET NO SATISFACTION by the Rolling Stones.  Then in  1978 I heard the song “Dust in the Wind” by Kansas when it rose to #6 on the charts. That song told me that Kerry Livgren the writer of that song and a member of Kansas had come to the same conclusion that both Solomon and the ROLLING STONES had. I remember mentioning to my friends at church that we may soon see some members of Kansas become Christians because their search for the meaning of life had obviously come up empty even though they had risen from being an unknown band to the top of the music business and had all the wealth and fame that came with that. Furthermore, Solomon realized death comes to everyone and there must be something more.

Livgren wrote:

All we do, crumbles to the ground though we refuse to see, Dust in the Wind, All we are is dust in the wind, Don’t hang on, Nothing lasts forever but the Earth and Sky, It slips away, And all your money won’t another minute buy.”

Take a minute and compare Kerry Livgren’s words to that of the late British humanist H.J. Blackham:

On humanist assumptions, life leads to nothing, and every pretense that it does not is a deceit. If there is a bridge over a gorge which spans only half the distance and ends in mid-air, and if the bridge is crowded with human beings pressing on, one after the other they fall into the abyss. The bridge leads nowhere, and those who are pressing forward to cross it are going nowhere….It does not matter where they think they are going, what preparations for the journey they may have made, how much they may be enjoying it all. The objection merely points out objectively that such a situation is a model of futility“( H. J. Blackham, et al., Objections to Humanism (Riverside, Connecticut: Greenwood Press, 1967).

_____________________________________

Both Kerry Livgren and the bass player DAVE HOPE of Kansas became Christians eventually. Kerry Livgren first tried Eastern Religions and DAVE HOPE had to come out of a heavy drug addiction. I was shocked and elated to see their personal testimony on The 700 Club in 1981 and that same  interview can be seen on youtube today. Livgren lives in Topeka, Kansas today where he teaches “Diggers,” a Sunday school class at Topeka Bible Church. DAVE HOPE is the head of Worship, Evangelism and Outreach at Immanuel Anglican Church in Destin, Florida.

Those who reject God must accept three realities of their life UNDER THE SUN according to Solomon.  FIRST, death is the end and SECOND, chance and time are the only guiding forces in this life.  FINALLY, power reigns in this life and the scales are never balanced. In contrast, Dave Hope and Kerry Livgren believe death is not the end and the Christian can  face death and also confront the world knowing that it is not determined by chance and time alone and finally there is a judge who will balance the scales.

Solomon’s experiment was a search for meaning to life “UNDER THE SUN.” Then in last few words in the Book of Ecclesiastes he looks above the sun and brings God back into the picture: “The conclusion, when all has been heard, is: Fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person. For God will bring every act to judgment, everything which is hidden, whether it is good or evil.”

Actually the answer to find meaning in life is found in putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ. The Bible is true from cover to cover and can be trusted.

Thanks for your time.

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher, everettehatcher@gmail.com, http://www.thedailyhatch.org, cell ph 501-920-5733, Box 23416, LittleRock, AR 72221

 

President Carter with Adrian and Joyce Rogers in 1979 at the White House:
____

Adrian Rogers in the White House pictured with President Ronald Reagan below:

________

Adrian and Joyce Rogers with President Bush at Union University in Jackson, TN:

________________________________________________

Adrian Rogers pictured below on national day of prayer with President Bush.

___

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“Truth Tuesday” Debating the Founding Fathers with Ark Times Bloggers Part 8 Thomas Jefferson affirms that the main purpose of society is to enable human beings to keep the fruits of their labor

I have gone back and forth and back and forth with many liberals on the Arkansas Times Blog on many issues such as abortionhuman rightswelfarepovertygun control  and issues dealing with popular culture , but the issue of the founding fathers’ views on religion got one of the biggest responses.

It is true that 29 of the signers of the Declaration of Independence had degrees with Bible Colleges or Seminaries and these men we know were God-fearing Protestants. This means they had a biblical view of man with an understanding of our sin nature and this led them to come up with a limited government with many checks and balances. They had a strong belief in the afterlife and in future punishments and rewards. They also encouraged Christianity and were not hostile to religion. However, they did not set up a Christian Theocracy but wanted freedom of religion.

People really are losing their faith in big government and they want more liberty back. It seems to me we have to get back to the founding  principles that made our country great.  We also need to realize that a big government will encourage waste and corruptionThe recent scandals in our government have proved my point. In fact, the jokes President Obama made at Ohio State about possibly auditing them are not so funny now that reality shows how the IRS was acting more like a monster out of control.  Here is a clip discussing the founders and what their religious views were.

David Barton: Declaration and Constitution Are Based Entirely On The Bible

Here is some comments from our debate on the Arkansas Times Blog in July of 2013:

Citizen1 talks about my views as if I am in favor of the government having crown jewels pilfered from the peasants. Nothing can be further from my view. I think that the government should lower taxes and return the responsibility for the poor back to private organizations and then eliminate the welfare trap that traps people in poverty.

http://www.vindicatingthefounders.com/libr…

Thomas Jefferson to Joseph Milligan

April 6, 1816

[Jefferson affirms that the main purpose of society is to enable human beings to keep the fruits of their labor. — TGW]

To take from one, because it is thought that his own industry and that of his fathers has acquired too much, in order to spare to others, who, or whose fathers have not exercised equal industry and skill, is to violate arbitrarily the first principle of association, “the guarantee to every one of a free exercise of his industry, and the fruits acquired by it.” If the overgrown wealth of an individual be deemed dangerous to the State, the best corrective is the law of equal inheritance to all in equal degree; and the better, as this enforces a law of nature, while extra taxation violates it.

[From Writings of Thomas Jefferson, ed. Albert E. Bergh (Washington: Thomas Jefferson Memorial Association, 1904), 14:466.]
_______________

Jefferson pointed out that to take from the rich and give to the poor through government is just wrong. Franklin knew the poor would have a better path upward without government welfare coming their way. Milton Friedman’s negative income tax is the best method for doing that and by taking away all welfare programs and letting them go to the churches for charity.

https://thedailyhatch.org/2012/09/06/privat…

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“Truth Tuesday” Debating the Founding Fathers with Ark Times Bloggers Part 7 James Madison “A watchful eye must be kept on ourselves lest, while we are building ideal monuments of renown and bliss here, we neglect to have our names enrolled in the Annals of Heaven”

I have gone back and forth and back and forth with many liberals on the Arkansas Times Blog on many issues such as abortionhuman rightswelfarepovertygun control  and issues dealing with popular culture , but the issue of the founding fathers’ views on religion got one of the biggest responses.

It is true that 29 of the signers of the Declaration of Independence had degrees with Bible Colleges or Seminaries and these men we know were God-fearing Protestants. This means they had a biblical view of man with an understanding of our sin nature and this led them to come up with a limited government with many checks and balances. They had a strong belief in the afterlife and in future punishments and rewards. They also encouraged Christianity and were not hostile to religion. However, they did not set up a Christian Theocracy but wanted freedom of religion.

People really are losing their faith in big government and they want more liberty back. It seems to me we have to get back to the founding  principles that made our country great.  We also need to realize that a big government will encourage waste and corruptionThe recent scandals in our government have proved my point. In fact, the jokes President Obama made at Ohio State about possibly auditing them are not so funny now that reality shows how the IRS was acting more like a monster out of control.  Here is a clip discussing the founders and what their religious views were.

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Here is some comments from our debate on the Arkansas Times Blog in July of 2013:

Outlier you have studied a lot about James Madison evidently. In the advertisement from the Freedom from Religion Foundation there is a quote from James Madison but these quotes below were omitted. Which quotes best represent his views?

James Madison

SIGNER OF THE CONSTITUTION; AUTHOR OF THE FEDERALIST PAPERS; FRAMER OF THE BILL OF RIGHTS; SECRETARY OF STATE; FOURTH PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES

A watchful eye must be kept on ourselves lest, while we are building ideal monuments of renown and bliss here, we neglect to have our names enrolled in the Annals of Heaven.

(. James Madison, Letters and Other Writings of James Madison (New York: R. Worthington, 1884), Vol. I, pp. 5-6, to William Bradford on November 9, 1772. )

I have sometimes thought there could not be a stronger testimony in favor of religion or against temporal enjoyments, even the most rational and manly, than for men who occupy the most honorable and gainful departments and [who] are rising in reputation and wealth, publicly to declare their unsatisfactoriness by becoming fervent advocates in the cause of Christ; and I wish you may give in your evidence in this way.

( James Madison, The Papers of James Madison, William T. Hutchinson, editor (Illinois: University of Chicago Press, 1962), Vol. I, p. 96, to William Bradford on September 25, 1773.)

Olphart responded:

Saline, I don’t think that Madison is supporting your cause here. Admittedly, the quote is in the prolix, exceedingly flowery style of the day that’s hard for us to understand today, but excerpting this phrase “declare their unsatisfactoriness by becoming fervent advocates in the cause of Christ”, seems to perfectly describe any Tea Party politician. In other words, by invoking Jesus for political gain, you are deeming yourself to be unsatisfactory.

I responded:

Olphart, on facebook James C. Pugh who I do not know said this about the letter from James Madison to William Bradford in Sept of 1773:

William Bradford, having decided not to pursue the ministry as a career, wrote James Madison asking his advice on the choice between law, medicine, and merchandising. Madison’s response expressed disappointment in Bradford’s decision not to pursue the ministry, yet he remained supportive of any choice his friend would make. The advice that follows is an expression of humility and devotion to Christ. Madison seems to say that too often men in positions of great public influence fail to follow Christ in their public lives. According to Madison, no stronger testimony of Christ can be born than for those who have acquired much reputation and wealth to publicly declare their devotion to the cause of Christ.

Olphart responded:

Saline, thanks for the further research into that quote. The more I look at it the “confuseder” I get. Sometimes eloquent writers can get carried away and Madison might have done that here.

You’ve looked at the context behind the quote anyway so you might be right. I greatly respect the founding fathers; most seemed to be original thinkers or as we would say now days: they thought outside the box.

Of course, they were human; they were flawed men like us all. You and I might disagree what each man’s flaws and virtues were but we’ll have opportunity to discuss that later, I’m sure.

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“Truth Tuesday” Debating the Founding Fathers with Ark Times Bloggers Part 6 Our founding fathers did believe in rewards and punishments in the next life for what we do in this life!!!!!!

I have gone back and forth and back and forth with many liberals on the Arkansas Times Blog on many issues such as abortionhuman rightswelfarepovertygun control  and issues dealing with popular culture , but the issue of the founding fathers’ views on religion got one of the biggest responses.

It is true that 29 of the signers of the Declaration of Independence had degrees with Bible Colleges or Seminaries and these men we know were God-fearing Protestants. This means they had a biblical view of man with an understanding of our sin nature and this led them to come up with a limited government with many checks and balances. They had a strong belief in the afterlife and in future punishments and rewards. They also encouraged Christianity and were not hostile to religion. However, they did not set up a Christian Theocracy but wanted freedom of religion.

People really are losing their faith in big government and they want more liberty back. It seems to me we have to get back to the founding  principles that made our country great.  We also need to realize that a big government will encourage waste and corruptionThe recent scandals in our government have proved my point. In fact, the jokes President Obama made at Ohio State about possibly auditing them are not so funny now that reality shows how the IRS was acting more like a monster out of control.  Here is a clip discussing the founders and what their religious views were.

David Barton: Declaration and Constitution Are Based Entirely On The Bible

Here is some comments from our debate on the Arkansas Times Blog in July of 2013:

Outlier, you have your humorous moments, I have to give you that and I enjoyed the rap song and the irony of feeling sorry for the pimp who has the hard job of making his rent. It reminded me of the Will Ferrell pimp story he told about in the movie THE OTHER GUYS. Here is the clip:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gzqLbAMhZo…

Morality from religion is necessary for a government such as the founders set up in the USA. Don’t take my word for it but look at some of these comments from George Washington.

In the advertisement from the Freedom from Religion Foundation you have a quote from George Washington but these quotes below were omitted:

“While just government protects all in their religious rights, true religion affords to government its surest support.”

(Source: George Washington, The Writings of George Washington, John C. Fitzpatrick, editor (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1932), Vol. XXX, p. 432 n., from his address to the Synod of the Dutch Reformed Church in North America, October 9, 1789.)

“Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of patriotism who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness, these firmest props of the duties of man and citizens. The mere politician, equally with the pious man, ought to respect and to cherish them. A volume could not trace all their connexions with private and public felicity. Let it simply be asked, Where is the security for property, for reputation, for life, if the sense of religious obligation desert the oaths, which are the instruments of investigation in Courts of Justice? And let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion. Whatever may be conceded to the influence of refined education on minds of peculiar structure, reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle. It is substantially true, that virtue or morality is a necessary spring of popular government. The rule, indeed, extends with more or less force to every species of free government. Who, that is a sincere friend to it, can look with indifference upon attempts to shake the foundation of the fabric?”

(Source: George Washington, Address of George Washington, President of the United States . . . Preparatory to His Declination (Baltimore: George and Henry S. Keatinge), pp. 22-23. In his Farewell Address to the United States in 1796.)

“[T]he [federal] government . . . can never be in danger of degenerating into a monarchy, and oligarchy, an aristocracy, or any other despotic or oppressive form so long as there shall remain any virtue in the body of the people.”

(Source: George Washington, The Writings of George Washington, John C. Fitzpatrick, editor (Washington: U. S. Government Printing Office, 1939), Vol. XXIX, p. 410. In a letter to Marquis De Lafayette, February 7, 1788.)

_____________________

OUTLIER, ON WHAT BASIS DO YOU SAY THAT MURDER IS WRONG? The founding fathers made it clear that our rights to life and liberty came to us from the lawgiver which was the God that revealed himself in the Bible. If you took the time to read George Washington’s Farewell Speech (which I quoted from above) then you will see that this is true.

Here is an outline of some of points he made in that speech, by the way when he said “religion” in this speech he was talking about Christianity.

Religion and Morality…
Are “indispensable supports” for “political prosperity.”
Are the “firmest props of the duties of Men and Country.”

The oaths in our courts would be useless without “the sense of religious obligation.”

“And let us with caution indulge the supposition, that morality can be maintained without religion.”

“Reason and experience both forbid us to expect, that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle.”

“Promote, then, as an object of primary importance, institutions for the general diffusion of knowledge.”

THIS BRINGS ME TO WHAT “CITIZEN1” DISMISSED AS “RICHES IN THE NEXT LIFE.”

Our founding fathers did believe in rewards and punishments in the next life for what we do in this life!!!!!!
___________

Benjamin Rush, Signer of the Declaration of Independence,

“Remember that NATIONAL CRIMES REQUIRE NATIONAL PUNISHMENTS AND WITHOUT DECLARING WHAT PUNISHMENT AWAITS THIS EVIL, YOU MAY VENTURE TO ASSURE THEM THAT IT CANNOT PASS WITH IMPUNITY, UNLESS GOD SHALL CEASE TO BE JUST or merciful.”

(Source: Benjamin Rush, An Address to the Inhabitants of the British Settlements in America Upon Slave-Keeping (Boston: John Boyles, 1773), p. 30.)

______________________

James McHenry

Signer of the Constitution

“[P]ublic utility pleads most forcibly for the general distribution of the Holy Scriptures. The doctrine they preach, the obligations they impose, THE PUNISHMENT THEY THREATEN, THE REWARDS THEY PROMISE, the stamp and image of divinity they bear, which produces a conviction of their truths, can alone secure to society, order and peace, and to our courts of justice and constitutions of government, purity, stability and usefulness. In vain, without the Bible, we increase penal laws and draw entrenchments around our institutions. Bibles are strong entrenchments. Where they abound, men cannot pursue wicked courses, and at the same time enjoy quiet conscience.”

(Source: Bernard C. Steiner, One Hundred and Ten Years of Bible Society Work in Maryland, 1810-1920 (Maryland Bible Society, 1921), p. 14.)

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President Obama c/o The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW Washington, DC 20500 Dear Mr. President, I know that you receive 20,000 letters a day and that you actually read 10 of them every day. I really do respect you for trying to get a pulse on what is going on out here. There have […]

The Founding Fathers views concerning Jesus, Christianity and the Bible (Part 5, John Hancock)

There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at war with religion in our public life. Lillian Kwon quoted somebody […]

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There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at war with religion in our public life. Lillian Kwon quoted somebody […]

The Founding Fathers views concerning Jesus, Christianity and the Bible (Part 2, John Quincy Adams)

There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at war with religion in our public life. Lillian Kwon quoted somebody […]

The Founding Fathers views concerning Jesus, Christianity and the Bible (Part 1, John Adams)

There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at war with religion in our public life. Lillian Kwon quoted somebody […]

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President Obama Speaks at The Ohio State University Commencement Ceremony Published on May 5, 2013 President Obama delivers the commencement address at The Ohio State University. May 5, 2013. You can learn a lot about what President Obama thinks the founding fathers were all about from his recent speech at Ohio State. May 7, 2013, […]

Francis Schaeffer’s own words concerning the founding fathers and their belief in inalienable rights

Dr. C. Everett Koop with Bill Graham. Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 4) THE BASIS FOR HUMAN DIGNITY Published on Oct 7, 2012 by AdamMetropolis The 45 minute video above is from the film series created from Francis Schaeffer’s book “Whatever Happened to the Human Race?” with Dr. C. Everett Koop. This […]

David Barton: In their words, did the Founding Fathers put their faith in Christ? (Part 4)

America’s Founding Fathers Deist or Christian? – David Barton 4/6 There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at […]

Were the founding fathers christian?

3 Of 5 / The Bible’s Influence In America / American Heritage Series / David Barton There were 55 gentlemen who put together the constitution and their church affliation is of public record. Greg Koukl notes: Members of the Constitutional Convention, the most influential group of men shaping the political foundations of our nation, were […]

John Quincy Adams a founding father?

I do  not think that John Quincy Adams was a founding father in the same sense that his  father was. However, I do think he was involved in the  early days of our government working with many of the founding fathers. Michele Bachmann got into another history-related tussle on ABC’s “Good  Morning America” today, standing […]

“Sanctity of Life Saturday” Taking on Ark Times Bloggers on various issues Part E “Moral absolutes and abortion” Francis Schaeffer Quotes part 5(includes the film SLAUGHTER OF THE INNOCENTS) (editorial cartoon)

I have gone back and forth and back and forth with many liberals on the Arkansas Times Blog on many issues such as abortion, human rights, welfare, poverty, gun control  and issues dealing with popular culture. Here is another exchange I had with them a while back. My username at the Ark Times Blog is Saline […]

Article from Adrian Rogers, “Bring back the glory”

I truly believe that many of the problems we have today in the USA are due to the advancement of humanism in the last few decades in our society. Ronald Reagan appointed the evangelical Dr. C. Everett Koop to the position of Surgeon General in his administration. He partnered with Dr. Francis Schaeffer in making the […]

“Schaeffer Sundays” Francis Schaeffer’s own words concerning the possibility that minorities may be mistreated under 51% rule

Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 4) THE BASIS FOR HUMAN DIGNITY Published on Oct 7, 2012 by AdamMetropolis ____________ The 45 minute video above is from the film series created from Francis Schaeffer’s book “Whatever Happened to the Human Race?” with Dr. C. Everett Koop. This book  really helped develop my political […]

 

“Truth Tuesday” Debating the Founding Fathers with Ark Times Bloggers Part 5 Greg Koukl “What Did the Founding Fathers Believe and Value?”

I have gone back and forth and back and forth with many liberals on the Arkansas Times Blog on many issues such as abortionhuman rightswelfarepovertygun control  and issues dealing with popular culture , but the issue of the founding fathers’ views on religion got one of the biggest responses.

It is true that 29 of the signers of the Declaration of Independence had degrees with Bible Colleges or Seminaries and these men we know were God-fearing Protestants. This means they had a biblical view of man with an understanding of our sin nature and this led them to come up with a limited government with many checks and balances. They had a strong belief in the afterlife and in future punishments and rewards. They also encouraged Christianity and were not hostile to religion. However, they did not set up a Christian Theocracy but wanted freedom of religion.

People really are losing their faith in big government and they want more liberty back. It seems to me we have to get back to the founding  principles that made our country great.  We also need to realize that a big government will encourage waste and corruptionThe recent scandals in our government have proved my point. In fact, the jokes President Obama made at Ohio State about possibly auditing them are not so funny now that reality shows how the IRS was acting more like a monster out of control.  Here is a clip discussing the founders and what their religious views were.

David Barton: Declaration and Constitution Are Based Entirely On The Bible

Here is some comments from our debate on the Arkansas Times Blog in July of 2013:

YossarianMinderBinder, you think David Barton is a con man. I think if you look at the historical facts that he puts forth then you will come to a different conclusion. Tell me how you can deal with these historical facts from Greg Koukl?

https://thedailyhatch.org/2012/09/12/open-l…

In a letter to the White House in 2012 I included these words by Greg Koukl:

Who Were the Founding Fathers?
Historical proof-texts can be raised on both sides. Certainly there were godless men among the early leadership of our nation, though some of those cited as examples of Founding Fathers turn out to be insignificant players. For example, Thomas Paine and Ethan Allen may have been hostile to evangelical Christianity, but they were firebrands of the Revolution, not intellectual architects of the Constitution. Paine didn’t arrive in this country until 1774 and only stayed a short time.As for others–George Washington, Samuel Adams, James Madison, John Witherspoon, Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, John Adams, Patrick Henry, and even Thomas Jefferson–their personal correspondence, biographies, and public statements are replete with quotations showing that these thinkers had political philosophies deeply influenced by Christianity.The Constitutional ConventionIt’s not necessary to dig through the diaries, however, to determine which faith was the Founder’s guiding light. There’s an easier way to settle the issue.The phrase “Founding Fathers” is a proper noun. It refers to a specific group of men, the 55 delegates to the Constitutional Convention. There were other important players not in attendance, like Jefferson, whose thinking deeply influenced the shaping of our nation. These 55 Founding Fathers, though, made up the core.The denominational affiliations of these men were a matter of public record. Among the delegates were 28 Episcopalians, 8 Presbyterians, 7 Congregationalists, 2 Lutherans, 2 Dutch Reformed, 2 Methodists, 2 Roman Catholics, 1 unknown, and only 3 deists–Williamson, Wilson, and Franklin–this at a time when church membership entailed a sworn public confession of biblical faith.[1]This is a revealing tally. It shows that the members of the Constitutional Convention, the most influential group of men shaping the political foundations of our nation, were almost all Christians, 51 of 55–a full 93%. Indeed, 70% were Calvinists (the Episcopalians, Presbyterians, and the Dutch Reformed), considered by some to be the most extreme and dogmatic form of Christianity….

What Did the Founding Fathers Believe and Value?
When you study the documents of the Revolutionary period, a precise picture comes into focus. Here it is:

Virtually all those involved in the founding enterprise were God-fearing men in the Christian sense; most were Calvinistic Protestants.
The Founders were deeply influenced by a biblical view of man and government. With a sober understanding of the fallenness of man, they devised a system of limited authority and checks and balances.
The Founders understood that fear of God, moral leadership, and a righteous citizenry were necessary for their great experiment to succeed.
Therefore, they structured a political climate that was encouraging to Christianity and accommodating to religion, rather than hostile to it.
Protestant Christianity was the prevailing religious view for the first 150 years of our history.

However…

The Fathers sought to set up a just society, not a Christian theocracy.
They specifically prohibited the establishment of Christianity–or any other faith–as the religion of our nation.

Related posts:

Open letter to President Obama (Part 293) (Founding Fathers’ view on Christianity, Elbridge Gerry of MA)

President Obama c/o The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW Washington, DC 20500 Dear Mr. President, I know that you receive 20,000 letters a day and that you actually read 10 of them every day. I really do respect you for trying to get a pulse on what is going on out here. There have […]

The Founding Fathers views concerning Jesus, Christianity and the Bible (Part 5, John Hancock)

There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at war with religion in our public life. Lillian Kwon quoted somebody […]

The Founding Fathers views concerning Jesus, Christianity and the Bible (Part 4, Elbridge Gerry)

There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at war with religion in our public life. Lillian Kwon quoted somebody […]

The Founding Fathers views concerning Jesus, Christianity and the Bible (Part 3, Samuel Adams)

There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at war with religion in our public life. Lillian Kwon quoted somebody […]

The Founding Fathers views concerning Jesus, Christianity and the Bible (Part 2, John Quincy Adams)

There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at war with religion in our public life. Lillian Kwon quoted somebody […]

The Founding Fathers views concerning Jesus, Christianity and the Bible (Part 1, John Adams)

There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at war with religion in our public life. Lillian Kwon quoted somebody […]

President Obama and the Founding Fathers

President Obama Speaks at The Ohio State University Commencement Ceremony Published on May 5, 2013 President Obama delivers the commencement address at The Ohio State University. May 5, 2013. You can learn a lot about what President Obama thinks the founding fathers were all about from his recent speech at Ohio State. May 7, 2013, […]

Francis Schaeffer’s own words concerning the founding fathers and their belief in inalienable rights

Dr. C. Everett Koop with Bill Graham. Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 4) THE BASIS FOR HUMAN DIGNITY Published on Oct 7, 2012 by AdamMetropolis The 45 minute video above is from the film series created from Francis Schaeffer’s book “Whatever Happened to the Human Race?” with Dr. C. Everett Koop. This […]

David Barton: In their words, did the Founding Fathers put their faith in Christ? (Part 4)

America’s Founding Fathers Deist or Christian? – David Barton 4/6 There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at […]

Were the founding fathers christian?

3 Of 5 / The Bible’s Influence In America / American Heritage Series / David Barton There were 55 gentlemen who put together the constitution and their church affliation is of public record. Greg Koukl notes: Members of the Constitutional Convention, the most influential group of men shaping the political foundations of our nation, were […]

John Quincy Adams a founding father?

I do  not think that John Quincy Adams was a founding father in the same sense that his  father was. However, I do think he was involved in the  early days of our government working with many of the founding fathers. Michele Bachmann got into another history-related tussle on ABC’s “Good  Morning America” today, standing […]

“Sanctity of Life Saturday” Taking on Ark Times Bloggers on various issues Part E “Moral absolutes and abortion” Francis Schaeffer Quotes part 5(includes the film SLAUGHTER OF THE INNOCENTS) (editorial cartoon)

I have gone back and forth and back and forth with many liberals on the Arkansas Times Blog on many issues such as abortion, human rights, welfare, poverty, gun control  and issues dealing with popular culture. Here is another exchange I had with them a while back. My username at the Ark Times Blog is Saline […]

Article from Adrian Rogers, “Bring back the glory”

I truly believe that many of the problems we have today in the USA are due to the advancement of humanism in the last few decades in our society. Ronald Reagan appointed the evangelical Dr. C. Everett Koop to the position of Surgeon General in his administration. He partnered with Dr. Francis Schaeffer in making the […]

“Schaeffer Sundays” Francis Schaeffer’s own words concerning the possibility that minorities may be mistreated under 51% rule

Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 4) THE BASIS FOR HUMAN DIGNITY Published on Oct 7, 2012 by AdamMetropolis ____________ The 45 minute video above is from the film series created from Francis Schaeffer’s book “Whatever Happened to the Human Race?” with Dr. C. Everett Koop. This book  really helped develop my political […]

 

“Truth Tuesday” Debating the Founding Fathers with Ark Times Bloggers Part 4 Ben Franklin “I see of this truth, that God governs in the affairs of men”

I have gone back and forth and back and forth with many liberals on the Arkansas Times Blog on many issues such as abortionhuman rightswelfarepovertygun control  and issues dealing with popular culture , but the issue of the founding fathers’ views on religion got one of the biggest responses.

It is true that 29 of the signers of the Declaration of Independence had degrees with Bible Colleges or Seminaries and these men we know were God-fearing Protestants. This means they had a biblical view of man with an understanding of our sin nature and this led them to come up with a limited government with many checks and balances. They had a strong belief in the afterlife and in future punishments and rewards. They also encouraged Christianity and were not hostile to religion. However, they did not set up a Christian Theocracy but wanted freedom of religion.

People really are losing their faith in big government and they want more liberty back. It seems to me we have to get back to the founding  principles that made our country great.  We also need to realize that a big government will encourage waste and corruptionThe recent scandals in our government have proved my point. In fact, the jokes President Obama made at Ohio State about possibly auditing them are not so funny now that reality shows how the IRS was acting more like a monster out of control.  Here is a clip discussing the founders and what their religious views were.

David Barton: Declaration and Constitution Are Based Entirely On The Bible

Here is some comments from our debate on the Arkansas Times Blog in July of 2013:

https://thedailyhatch.org/2013/03/09/import…

In the advertisement from the Freedom from Religion Foundation you have a quote from Benjamin Franklin but these quotes below were omitted.

Benjamin Franklin

Signer of the Constitution and Declaration of Independence

[O]nly a virtuous people are capable of freedom. As nations become corrupt and vicious, they have more need of masters.

(Source: Benjamin Franklin, The Writings of Benjamin Franklin, Jared Sparks, editor (Boston: Tappan, Whittemore and Mason, 1840), Vol. X, p. 297, April 17, 1787. )

I have lived, Sir, a long time, and the longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this truth, that God governs in the affairs of men. And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without His notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without his aid? We have been assured, Sir, in the Sacred Writings, that “except the Lord build the House, they labor in vain that build it.” I firmly believe this; and I also believe that without His concurring aid we shall succeed in this political building no better, than the Builders of Babel: We shall be divided by our partial local interests; our projects will be confounded, and we ourselves shall become a reproach and bye word down to future ages. And what is worse, mankind may hereafter from this unfortunate instance, despair of establishing governments by human wisdom and leave it to chance, war and conquest.

I therefore beg leave to move that henceforth prayers imploring the assistance of Heaven, and its blessings on our deliberations be held in this Assembly every morning before we proceed to business, and that one or more of the clergy of this city be requested to officiate in that service.

(Source: James Madison, The Records of the Federal Convention of 1787, Max Farrand, editor (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1911), Vol. I, pp. 450-452, June 28, 1787.)

* For more details on this quote check out this link

http://www.wallbuilders.com/LIBissuesArtic…

Related posts:

Open letter to President Obama (Part 293) (Founding Fathers’ view on Christianity, Elbridge Gerry of MA)

President Obama c/o The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW Washington, DC 20500 Dear Mr. President, I know that you receive 20,000 letters a day and that you actually read 10 of them every day. I really do respect you for trying to get a pulse on what is going on out here. There have […]

The Founding Fathers views concerning Jesus, Christianity and the Bible (Part 5, John Hancock)

There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at war with religion in our public life. Lillian Kwon quoted somebody […]

The Founding Fathers views concerning Jesus, Christianity and the Bible (Part 4, Elbridge Gerry)

There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at war with religion in our public life. Lillian Kwon quoted somebody […]

The Founding Fathers views concerning Jesus, Christianity and the Bible (Part 3, Samuel Adams)

There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at war with religion in our public life. Lillian Kwon quoted somebody […]

The Founding Fathers views concerning Jesus, Christianity and the Bible (Part 2, John Quincy Adams)

There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at war with religion in our public life. Lillian Kwon quoted somebody […]

The Founding Fathers views concerning Jesus, Christianity and the Bible (Part 1, John Adams)

There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at war with religion in our public life. Lillian Kwon quoted somebody […]

President Obama and the Founding Fathers

President Obama Speaks at The Ohio State University Commencement Ceremony Published on May 5, 2013 President Obama delivers the commencement address at The Ohio State University. May 5, 2013. You can learn a lot about what President Obama thinks the founding fathers were all about from his recent speech at Ohio State. May 7, 2013, […]

Francis Schaeffer’s own words concerning the founding fathers and their belief in inalienable rights

Dr. C. Everett Koop with Bill Graham. Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 4) THE BASIS FOR HUMAN DIGNITY Published on Oct 7, 2012 by AdamMetropolis The 45 minute video above is from the film series created from Francis Schaeffer’s book “Whatever Happened to the Human Race?” with Dr. C. Everett Koop. This […]

David Barton: In their words, did the Founding Fathers put their faith in Christ? (Part 4)

America’s Founding Fathers Deist or Christian? – David Barton 4/6 There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at […]

Were the founding fathers christian?

3 Of 5 / The Bible’s Influence In America / American Heritage Series / David Barton There were 55 gentlemen who put together the constitution and their church affliation is of public record. Greg Koukl notes: Members of the Constitutional Convention, the most influential group of men shaping the political foundations of our nation, were […]

John Quincy Adams a founding father?

I do  not think that John Quincy Adams was a founding father in the same sense that his  father was. However, I do think he was involved in the  early days of our government working with many of the founding fathers. Michele Bachmann got into another history-related tussle on ABC’s “Good  Morning America” today, standing […]

“Sanctity of Life Saturday” Taking on Ark Times Bloggers on various issues Part E “Moral absolutes and abortion” Francis Schaeffer Quotes part 5(includes the film SLAUGHTER OF THE INNOCENTS) (editorial cartoon)

I have gone back and forth and back and forth with many liberals on the Arkansas Times Blog on many issues such as abortion, human rights, welfare, poverty, gun control  and issues dealing with popular culture. Here is another exchange I had with them a while back. My username at the Ark Times Blog is Saline […]

Article from Adrian Rogers, “Bring back the glory”

I truly believe that many of the problems we have today in the USA are due to the advancement of humanism in the last few decades in our society. Ronald Reagan appointed the evangelical Dr. C. Everett Koop to the position of Surgeon General in his administration. He partnered with Dr. Francis Schaeffer in making the […]

“Schaeffer Sundays” Francis Schaeffer’s own words concerning the possibility that minorities may be mistreated under 51% rule

Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 4) THE BASIS FOR HUMAN DIGNITY Published on Oct 7, 2012 by AdamMetropolis ____________ The 45 minute video above is from the film series created from Francis Schaeffer’s book “Whatever Happened to the Human Race?” with Dr. C. Everett Koop. This book  really helped develop my political […]

 

“Truth Tuesday” Debating the Founding Fathers with Ark Times Bloggers Part 3 John Adams “The general principles on which the fathers achieved independence were the general principles of Christianity”

I have gone back and forth and back and forth with many liberals on the Arkansas Times Blog on many issues such as abortionhuman rightswelfarepovertygun control  and issues dealing with popular culture , but the issue of the founding fathers’ views on religion got one of the biggest responses.

It is true that 29 of the signers of the Declaration of Independence had degrees with Bible Colleges or Seminaries and these men we know were God-fearing Protestants. This means they had a biblical view of man with an understanding of our sin nature and this led them to come up with a limited government with many checks and balances. They had a strong belief in the afterlife and in future punishments and rewards. They also encouraged Christianity and were not hostile to religion. However, they did not set up a Christian Theocracy but wanted freedom of religion.

People really are losing their faith in big government and they want more liberty back. It seems to me we have to get back to the founding  principles that made our country great.  We also need to realize that a big government will encourage waste and corruptionThe recent scandals in our government have proved my point. In fact, the jokes President Obama made at Ohio State about possibly auditing them are not so funny now that reality shows how the IRS was acting more like a monster out of control.  Here is a clip discussing the founders and what their religious views were.

David Barton: Declaration and Constitution Are Based Entirely On The Bible

Here is some comments from our debate on the Arkansas Times Blog in July of 2013:

Olddoc read Jefferson’s own words given 237 years ago:

“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…”

______________

I want to go where the evidence leads. AMERICANS UNITED Rob Boston misled several leaders into believing that David Barton fabricated quotes and attributed them to the founders and when I confronted him about that he just laughed and said he was glad that Barton was experiencing problems because of the article that Boston wrote even though Boston himself admitted to me that he knew that Barton did not fabricate the quotes but just got them from secondary sources.

https://thedailyhatch.org/2012/06/18/did-da…

________________________

In the advertisement from the Freedom from Religion Foundation you have a quote from John Adams but these quotes below were omitted. By the way these quotes were so powerful that I emailed and mailed them to the White House and here is a copy of the letter at this link

https://thedailyhatch.org/2013/04/03/open-l…

JOHN ADAMS:

SIGNER OF THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE; JUDGE; DIPLOMAT; ONE OF TWO SIGNERS OF THE BILL OF RIGHTS; SECOND PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES

The general principles on which the fathers achieved independence were the general principles of Christianity. I will avow that I then believed, and now believe, that those general principles of Christianity are as eternal and immutable as the existence and attributes of God.1

The Holy Ghost carries on the whole Christian system in this earth. Not a baptism, not a marriage, not a sacrament can be administered but by the Holy Ghost. . . . There is no authority, civil or religious – there can be no legitimate government but what is administered by this Holy Ghost. There can be no salvation without it. All without it is rebellion and perdition, or in more orthodox words damnation.2

Without religion, this world would be something not fit to be mentioned in polite company: I mean hell.3

The Christian religion is, above all the religions that ever prevailed or existed in ancient or modern times, the religion of wisdom, virtue, equity and humanity.4

Suppose a nation in some distant region should take the Bible for their only law book and every member should regulate his conduct by the precepts there exhibited. . . . What a Eutopia – what a Paradise would this region be!5

I have examined all religions, and the result is that the Bible is the best book in the world.6

1.Thomas Jefferson, The Writings of Thomas Jefferson (Washington D. C.: The Thomas Jefferson Memorial Association, 1904), Vol. XIII, p. 292-294. In a letter from John Adams to Thomas Jefferson on June 28, 1813.(Return)

2. John Adams, The Works of John Adams, Second President of the United States, Charles Francis Adams, editor (Boston: Little, Brown and Company, 1856), Vol. X, p. 254, to Thomas Jefferson on April 19, 1817. (Return)

3. John Adams, Works, Vol. III, p. 421, diary entry for July 26, 1796. (Return)

4. John Adams, Works, Vol. II, pp. 6-7, diary entry for February 22, 1756. (Return)

5. John Adams, Works, Vol. X, p. 85, to Thomas Jefferson on December 25, 1813. (Return)

6. John Adams and John Quincy Adams, The Selected Writings of John and John Quincy Adams, Adrienne Koch and William Peden, editors (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1946), p. 292, John Quincy Adams to John Adams, January 3, 1817.
__________________

Related posts:

Open letter to President Obama (Part 293) (Founding Fathers’ view on Christianity, Elbridge Gerry of MA)

President Obama c/o The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW Washington, DC 20500 Dear Mr. President, I know that you receive 20,000 letters a day and that you actually read 10 of them every day. I really do respect you for trying to get a pulse on what is going on out here. There have […]

The Founding Fathers views concerning Jesus, Christianity and the Bible (Part 5, John Hancock)

There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at war with religion in our public life. Lillian Kwon quoted somebody […]

The Founding Fathers views concerning Jesus, Christianity and the Bible (Part 4, Elbridge Gerry)

There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at war with religion in our public life. Lillian Kwon quoted somebody […]

The Founding Fathers views concerning Jesus, Christianity and the Bible (Part 3, Samuel Adams)

There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at war with religion in our public life. Lillian Kwon quoted somebody […]

The Founding Fathers views concerning Jesus, Christianity and the Bible (Part 2, John Quincy Adams)

There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at war with religion in our public life. Lillian Kwon quoted somebody […]

The Founding Fathers views concerning Jesus, Christianity and the Bible (Part 1, John Adams)

There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at war with religion in our public life. Lillian Kwon quoted somebody […]

President Obama and the Founding Fathers

President Obama Speaks at The Ohio State University Commencement Ceremony Published on May 5, 2013 President Obama delivers the commencement address at The Ohio State University. May 5, 2013. You can learn a lot about what President Obama thinks the founding fathers were all about from his recent speech at Ohio State. May 7, 2013, […]

Francis Schaeffer’s own words concerning the founding fathers and their belief in inalienable rights

Dr. C. Everett Koop with Bill Graham. Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 4) THE BASIS FOR HUMAN DIGNITY Published on Oct 7, 2012 by AdamMetropolis The 45 minute video above is from the film series created from Francis Schaeffer’s book “Whatever Happened to the Human Race?” with Dr. C. Everett Koop. This […]

David Barton: In their words, did the Founding Fathers put their faith in Christ? (Part 4)

America’s Founding Fathers Deist or Christian? – David Barton 4/6 There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at […]

Were the founding fathers christian?

3 Of 5 / The Bible’s Influence In America / American Heritage Series / David Barton There were 55 gentlemen who put together the constitution and their church affliation is of public record. Greg Koukl notes: Members of the Constitutional Convention, the most influential group of men shaping the political foundations of our nation, were […]

John Quincy Adams a founding father?

I do  not think that John Quincy Adams was a founding father in the same sense that his  father was. However, I do think he was involved in the  early days of our government working with many of the founding fathers. Michele Bachmann got into another history-related tussle on ABC’s “Good  Morning America” today, standing […]

“Sanctity of Life Saturday” Taking on Ark Times Bloggers on various issues Part E “Moral absolutes and abortion” Francis Schaeffer Quotes part 5(includes the film SLAUGHTER OF THE INNOCENTS) (editorial cartoon)

I have gone back and forth and back and forth with many liberals on the Arkansas Times Blog on many issues such as abortion, human rights, welfare, poverty, gun control  and issues dealing with popular culture. Here is another exchange I had with them a while back. My username at the Ark Times Blog is Saline […]

Article from Adrian Rogers, “Bring back the glory”

I truly believe that many of the problems we have today in the USA are due to the advancement of humanism in the last few decades in our society. Ronald Reagan appointed the evangelical Dr. C. Everett Koop to the position of Surgeon General in his administration. He partnered with Dr. Francis Schaeffer in making the […]

“Schaeffer Sundays” Francis Schaeffer’s own words concerning the possibility that minorities may be mistreated under 51% rule

Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 4) THE BASIS FOR HUMAN DIGNITY Published on Oct 7, 2012 by AdamMetropolis ____________ The 45 minute video above is from the film series created from Francis Schaeffer’s book “Whatever Happened to the Human Race?” with Dr. C. Everett Koop. This book  really helped develop my political […]

 

“Truth Tuesday” Debating the Founding Fathers with Ark Times Bloggers Part 2

Debating the Founding Fathers with Ark Times Bloggers Part 2

I have gone back and forth and back and forth with many liberals on the Arkansas Times Blog on many issues such as abortionhuman rightswelfarepovertygun control  and issues dealing with popular culture , but the issue of the founding fathers’ views on religion got one of the biggest responses.

It is true that 29 of the signers of the Declaration of Independence had degrees with Bible Colleges or Seminaries and these men we know were God-fearing Protestants. This means they had a biblical view of man with an understanding of our sin nature and this led them to come up with a limited government with many checks and balances. They had a strong belief in the afterlife and in future punishments and rewards. They also encouraged Christianity and were not hostile to religion. However, they did not set up a Christian Theocracy but wanted freedom of religion.

People really are losing their faith in big government and they want more liberty back. It seems to me we have to get back to the founding  principles that made our country great.  We also need to realize that a big government will encourage waste and corruptionThe recent scandals in our government have proved my point. In fact, the jokes President Obama made at Ohio State about possibly auditing them are not so funny now that reality shows how the IRS was acting more like a monster out of control.  Here is a clip discussing the founders and what their religious views were.

David Barton: Declaration and Constitution Are Based Entirely On The Bible

Here is some comments from our debate on the Arkansas Times Blog in July of 2013:

https://thedailyhatch.org/2012/08/12/presid…

David Barton has noted the following:

Contemporary post-modern critics (including President Obama) who assert that America is not a Christian nation always refrain from offering any definition of what the term “Christian nation” means. So what is an accurate definition of that term as demonstrated by the American experience?

Contrary to what critics imply, a Christian nation is not one in which all citizens are Christians, or the laws require everyone to adhere to Christian theology, or all leaders are Christians, or any other such superficial measurement. As Supreme Court Justice David Brewer (1837-1910) explained:

[I]n what sense can [America] be called a Christian nation? Not in the sense that Christianity is the established religion or that the people are in any manner compelled to support it. On the contrary, the Constitution specifically provides that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” Neither is it Christian in the sense that all its citizens are either in fact or name Christians. On the contrary, all religions have free scope within our borders. Numbers of our people profess other religions, and many reject all. Nor is it Christian in the sense that a profession of Christianity is a condition of holding office or otherwise engaging in public service, or essential to recognition either politically or socially. In fact, the government as a legal organization is independent of all religions. Nevertheless, we constantly speak of this republic as a Christian nation – in fact, as the leading Christian nation of the world. 8

So, if being a Christian nation is not based on any of the above criterion, then what makes America a Christian nation? According to Justice Brewer, America was “of all the nations in the world . . . most justly called a Christian nation” because Christianity “has so largely shaped and molded it.” 9

Constitutional law professor Edward Mansfield (1801-1880) similarly acknowledged:

In every country, the morals of a people – whatever they may be – take their form and spirit from their religion. For example, the marriage of brothers and sisters was permitted among the Egyptians because such had been the precedent set by their gods, Isis and Osiris. So, too, the classic nations celebrated the drunken rites of Bacchus. Thus, too, the Turk has become lazy and inert because dependent upon Fate, as taught by the Koran. And when in recent times there arose a nation [i.e., France] whose philosophers [e.g. Voltaire, Rousseau, Diderot, Helvetius, etc.] discovered there was no God and no religion, the nation was thrown into that dismal case in which there was no law and no morals. . . . In the United States, Christianity is the original, spontaneous, and national religion. 10

Founding Father and U. S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Marshall agreed:

[W]ith us, Christianity and religion are identified. It would be strange, indeed, if with such a people our institutions did not presuppose Christianity and did not often refer to it and exhibit relations with it. 11

Christianity is the religion that shaped America and made her what she is today. In fact, historically speaking, it can be irrefutably demonstrated that Biblical Christianity in America produced many of the cherished traditions still enjoyed today, including:

A republican rather than a theocratic form of government;
The institutional separation of church and state (as opposed to today’s enforced institutional secularization of church and state);
Protection for religious toleration and the rights of conscience;
A distinction between theology and behavior, thus allowing the incorporation into public policy of religious principles that promote good behavior but which do not enforce theological tenets (examples of this would include religious teachings such as the Good Samaritan, The Golden Rule, the Ten Commandments, the Sermon on the Mount, etc., all of which promote positive civil behavior but do not impose ecclesiastical rites); and
A free-market approach to religion, thus ensuring religious diversity.

Consequently, a Christian nation as demonstrated by the American experience is a nation founded upon Christian and Biblical principles, whose values, society, and institutions have largely been shaped by those principles. This definition was reaffirmed by American legal scholars and historians for generations 12 but is widely ignored by today’s revisionists.

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