Another American Revolution? A Guest Post by Richard Larsen
Greetings fellow blog followers. I have a guest post from an Idaho colleague of mine, Richard Larsen. Rick has read Shadow Revolution and has offered a few reflective comments that I thought you might enjoy. I thought he did a nice job of comparing the story to what is happening in our country today.
Rick is a political columnist for the Idaho State Journal, and his columns are also often picked up by national online newsletters, Conservative Daily News and Western Journalism, as well. So without further adieu, here’s Rick.
The number of Americans disgusted with the direction the nation is headed has been growing steadily over the past several years. And increasingly, abject frustration with the electoral process, which arguably has facilitated a fundamental transformation of America, leads a growing chorus calling for outright revolution. After all, the abuses of our own government far exceed what King George imposed on our revolutionary forebears.
Those of us who treasure America as the land of the free and the home of the brave, see contemporary statists, those who are actively engaged in expanding centralized governmental authority at the expense of personal liberty, as adulterators and enemies of freedom. They are “fundamentally transforming America” into a fiercely potent centralized government that was never intended for this republic; a fascist police state that, regulates, coerces, bullies, and spies on its citizens. In the past, they’ve done it surreptitiously, clandestinely, and dishonestly. Now, however, they do so blatantly and openly, yet classifying it as something else. The United States of America currently only slightly resembles the land of the free and home of the brave as founded and intended.
Even a cursory series of online searches reveals a growing chorus of classical-liberals calling for a “new revolution” against the tyranny of a federal government that resembles oligarchical fascism much more than the liberty-based republic we were given. Is such talk of a new revolution hyperbolic, or real? And if there were such a revolution, what might it look like? It could possibly resemble the plot of a new book, “Shadow Revolution: Code Name Operation Achilles,” by Will Edwinson. This is a major rewrite of his 2001 book, “Halcyon Revolution.”
As Will describes it, “The self-reliant producers try for years to elect people to government that would stem the tide of the Progressive movement, but to no avail. The Progressives always manage to win, and the trend continues toward socialism. Titus Coppard and the revolutionists have finally had enough, and they start a quiet shadow (underground) revolution. The goal is for all the self-reliant like-minded people to exodus to eighteen Western states, get jobs, start businesses, get involved in politics to gain ideological control of the respective legislatures; and on a pre-determined date, secede in one block from the union of the United States and form the new nation of the Free States of North America.”
For lovers of liberty, the speeches and teachings of Coppard, a fictional yet inspiring protagonist, are like reading Jefferson and the founding fathers. He explains the rationale behind the revolution. “The whole purpose of establishing this new nation is to encourage people to pursue their personal happiness by being as productive as they can. We will do this by cutting the shackles of regulation that prevent that productivity. We want new citizens to migrate to our country, but not for the purpose of a dole. If they are expecting that, they had better stay where they are, because, here, there will be no dole. Our credo will be that of President John F. Kennedy when he said in his inauguration speech: ‘Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country.’”
When addressing the economics behind his plan, he sounds like Milton Friedman, “We hope to abolish all taxes on income and capital; or at least, make them minimal. We feel that those taxes are counter-productive. People should be allowed to keep all of what they earn and accumulate and be free to dispose of it as they see fit. We will have poor people, true. As Jesus said, ‘The poor will always be with us’, but we intend to retrain the mind-set of the citizens. We will work to instill in their belief system that it is not the responsibility of government to care for the poor, but rather, this should be left up to private citizens, churches, and charities.”
And he embodies the federalist ideals of James Madison when he explains, “There will be no mandates imposed on the several states by the federal government because we respect states’ rights as spelled out in the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution.”
Some of Coppard’s suggestions for the Free States of North America will ring true regardless of ideological orientation on the political spectrum. Who could argue with a competency requirement for those seeking public office, or with term limits? As he explains, “Everyone running for president, vice-president, and service in the Congress—and I emphasize service, not career—must pass a comprehensive examination testing his knowledge and understanding of the Constitution in order to qualify him to run for office.” He then goes on to explain the term limits on congressmen and senators that would prevent the level of cronyism and amalgamation of power we see today.
Government is not the only difference in the new country. The basic culture must change as well. “Someone once said the miracle of America originally brought forth a breed of human being that was noted for its desire to do the right thing because common decency and common sense dictated common standards of conduct. Because of this, each generation rose higher and higher on the ladder of civilization with genuine and lasting results. We intend to recapture that philosophy. Basic honesty will be the governing rule,” Coppard explains. And while it may sound idyllic in today’s context, at one time it defined American culture.
For those of us who embrace the founding principles and documents of our republic, this story is one of reflection as well as possible inspiration for the future. After all, the classical-liberal ideals embedded into our founding documents made of us a great nation. We could be great yet again by returning to them. The existential question for each of us to ponder, is whether it will come at the ballot box, or from a new revolution?
Associated Press award winning columnist Richard Larsen is President of Larsen Financial, a brokerage and financial planning firm in Pocatello, Idaho and is a graduate of Idaho State University with degrees in Political Science and History and coursework completed toward a Master’s in Public Administration. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A postscript from Will: I thank Rick for this enlightening description of my novel. Just a reminder, also, that it is now available for purchase at www.amazon.com, and barnesandnoble.com., in paperback and Kindle at amazon, and in paperback only at barnes and noble.