The force behind Bond, Potter, the Beatles; Of murdered Israeli athletes and the banned Greek.
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… Henceforth, in the depth of my being there was peace and a strength that nothing could shake. It was the strength that carried me out of the Communist Party, that carried me back into the life of men.
If you will fight for freedom, all will be well with you.
The hard-earned wisdom of Chambers speaks to us all today. It reminds one and all to be on guard for both the casual disregard of freedom and its fruits — the Opening Ceremony of the London Olympics. It reminds that it is a dangerous folly to ignore the facts of those who would and have snuffed out innocent lives in the name of totalitarian murder (ignoring the massacre of those Israeli Olympians). And it reminds that the spotlight should always shine on those who, in the name of a quasi-totalitarian political correctness will ban the simplest expression of freedom — free speech.
Freedom is perpetually targeted for war. And one doesn’t have to sally forth to any foreign countries as the challenges within U.S. borders are multiplying daily.
The Mayor of New York wants the Big Gulp of soda banned because he is determined to control what you voluntarily put into your body by way of soft drinks.
In the wake of the Colorado shootings, the cry goes up yet again for controlling the freedom to bear arms.
In some automotive quarters the idea is to install a gadget in your car that measures your road mileage — so you can be taxed accordingly.
And, of course, Obamacare is in the process of restricting the right of a patient to choose their own doctor, keep their own insurance and, thanks to the rationing of the Independent Advisory Board — aka the “Death Panel” — have a say in your freedom to literally draw your next breath.
The other day, the Wall Street Journal’s Robert Pollock sat down with Yale Professor Charles Hill — a rare conservative in academia. Hill has seen more of the world than the university campus, having served as a foreign service officer and adviser to two Secretaries of State — Nixon’s Henry Kissinger and Reagan’s George Shultz.
What concerns Mr. Hill these days is “the conduct of the Obama administration” that is, in Hill’s view, effectively turning back the “democracy wave” that began in the wake of the end of the Cold War. Yet another way of noting that freedom is struggling in the 21st century. With the power of the Chinese on the rise, a Putin-run Russia essentially trying to restore as best as possible the empire of influence that once was the Soviet Union — and a craven (and broke) Europe wallowing in the guilt of responsibility for “Napoleon and colonialism and imperialism and Stalin and Marx and Lenin and Hitler and the Holocaust” — only more trouble for freedom lies ahead. If the United States is unwilling to do battle for the freedom that is at the core of liberal (in the old-fashioned sense) democracy — who will do this?
Once upon a time America was a beacon of freedom. And for a considerable while, all of Western civilization.
The failure to point out the role of freedom at the Olympics, the failure to take a specific moment of silence for those Israeli athletes murdered at the hands of freedom’s enemies, and the assault on the free speech rights of an Olympic athlete collectively bode nothing but ill.
They are signs that freedom is not only being taken for granted amidst even a vast celebration of the fruits of that freedom. They are one more in a series of signs that freedom itself is in one form, fashion or another directly under assault.
President Reagan used to speak of the importance of standing up for freedom. Marl Levin notes a specific Reagan quote on freedom at the close of his bestseller Liberty and Tyranny:
“Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children’s children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.”
Now is the time — now is always the time — to stand up for freedom.
Especially at the Olympics.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?
H/T to National Review Online