As we always do on this occasion, we ask our non-US readers to indulge us as we celebrate America’s Independence Day.
There wasn’t much news today, and there won’t be much over the weekend, but if we find something, we’ll certainly post about it. One thing we always watch for is when the Discoveroids, as they usually do on the Fourth, continue their gruesome campaign of intellectual body-snatching and quote-mining by hijacking one of America’s Founders and claiming him as one of their own. They did it last year with Jefferson when they wrote On Independence Day, Recalling the Intelligent-Design Views of the Man Who Wrote the Declaration of Independence. They did it the year before too — see Discoveroids Again Hijack the Fourth of July.
Regardless of what creationist websites may claim, there was nothing biblical about the Revolution. Most of the clergy opposed it — divine right of kings, you know. The bible is all about monarchy, on Earth as it is in heaven. It’s not much of a blueprint for the American Revolution, or the Constitution — see Is America a “Christian Nation”?
We always take this occasion to load you up with a bunch of historical links, so we’ll do that once again. Here’s a link to the Declaration of Independence, plus the Articles of Confederation, which — except for a few tweaks — was also drafted in July of 1776, but it wasn’t ratified until 1781. No collection would be complete without Common Sense by Thomas Paine.
Those links are about the Revolution. The time when we were living under the Articles is the often-neglected period when we had ten Presidents before George Washington — see President of the United States in Congress assembled. Finally we come to the Constitution.
Here’s the Federalist Papers — that splendid and still authoritative series of essays by the Constitution’s principal authors, who explain the meaning and purpose of its every clause. The website has a search feature at the bottom of the page. For some wholesome family amusement, invite someone over who insists that the nation was founded on religious principles. Encourage your friend to search through the entire thing for all the religious words he can think of, and then let him ponder the results.
It’s astounding what you can find at Primary Documents in American History (1763-1815). And you ought to be aware of this: Veto of federal public works bill by James Madison, because pork barrel spending is unconstitutional. Hey –it’s always handy to have a link to Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith. Searchable!
Because we’re not expecting any of our kind of news this weekend, it’s up to us to entertain ourselves. Therefore, we’re declaring another Intellectual Free-Fire Zone. As with all our free-fire zones, we’re open for the discussion of pretty much anything — science, politics, economics, whatever — as long as it’s tasteful and interesting. Banter, babble, bicker, bluster, blubber, blather, blab, blurt, burble, boast — say what you will. But avoid flame-wars and beware of the profanity filters.
We now throw open the comments to you, dear reader. Have at it.
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