Four Guiding Principles Apply to Life and Governance starting with America First

by | Mar 7, 2022 |

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The same foundational principles and values that guide our personal everyday lives should be no different than those we apply in selecting government representatives and cultural philosophies we most trust to lead us.

I’ll briefly summarize four basic considerations to keep in mind.

Get Your Own Act Together First

We hear this simple advice each time we get on the airplane: “In case of a cabin pressure emergency, put on your own mask first before assisting others.”

After all, it isn’t selfish to recognize that we can’t help others very long in this plane metaphorically called life if we don’t first prioritize our own oxygen supply.

The same fundamental wisdom applies to America, along with every other independent, peacefully coexistent nation.

An “America First” tenet shouldn’t be confused with a false precept of “America Only.” Rather, it prudently acknowledges that in order for our nation to serve as a strong global force and benefactor it must first serve to sustain the economic prosperity and social wellbeing of its people.

Access to abundant, affordable hydrocarbon energy comprises essential “oxygen” life support without which no modern society can exist.

Inexplicably, we have witnessed current Biden White House policies intentionally disrupt American energy independence and raise inflationary petroleum and home heating costs by capping the Keystone XL pipeline and drilling on federal lands and waters premised upon climate salvation, while simultaneously removing sanctions on the Nord Stream 2 pipeline which will make Germany, and Western Europe in general, more dependent on Russian gas.

We now watch the consequences play out as Moscow holds NATO hostage to Russian energy dependency as it advances toward territorial conquest in Ukraine.

Steer Clear of “Free Stuff” Offers

Whereas freedom never comes free, losing it imposes terrible costs.

And if you aren’t scared and disturbed as hell about the attacks on freedoms, values, and traditions taking place from within America, you just aren’t paying attention.

False promises of a cradle-to-grave socialist welfare state are supplanting an equal opportunity workfare ethic that incentivizes and rewards achievement.

Unaccountable profligate government spending is driving staggering levels of inflation and public debt that are devaluing our nation’s currency, eroding real wages, and imperiling our financial infrastructure.

Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher summed up the matter quite simply: “The trouble with socialism is that eventually, you run out of other people’s money.”

During a 1976 television interview, PM Thatcher observed that countries with governments that do this push to nationalize and control everything and progressively reduce free choices available to ordinary people.

President Ronald Reagan issued an urgent reminder that “Freedom … is never more than one generation away from extinction.”

Reagan added: “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.”

No One Is Ever Promised “Equity”

On his first day in office, President Joe Biden issued an Executive Order On Advancing Racial Equity and Support for Underserved Communities which, again, sounds very appealing.

After all, what culturally enlightened and compassionate person of any political stripe wouldn’t want to end all forms of discrimination and support economic and social programs that address injustices and inequities?

But here again, tricky trigger words, ”equity” for example, can target very costly intents and consequences America’s founders didn’t have in mind in writing the second paragraph of our nation’s Declaration of Independence: ”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, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

Differences between equality and equity are fundamental and crucial: between assuring equal opportunities and equal outcomes; between equal treatment under the law and fingers on scales of justice; between unbiasedly judging people’s behaviors and achievements as individuals — or stereotypically as members of groups; between rewarding those who strive for achievements and those who don’t.

Such social equity programs — socialism rebranded as sine qua non-doctrine of diversity — are antithetical to equal freedoms from government encroachments upon individual civil liberties our Constitution was expressly designed to protect.

Get Over Woke Guilt Shaming Gullibility

Plummeting Biden administration poll numbers indicate that more and more Americans are becoming wearily awakened to destructive woke consequences: woke race-baiting has attacked American patriotism; woke critical race theory (CRT) indoctrination has divided impressionable children into oppressor-victim categories; woke communication commissars have canceled free speech, and woke anti-law police movements have contributed to rampant lawlessness.

The very concept of patriotism has come under attack by modern Jacobins as we have witnessed top-level elected leaders characterize America as a systemically racist country; nihilistic mobs destroying and defacing statues of historical figures with impunity; and schools, institutions and streets dedicated to such founding leaders as George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, and Thomas Jefferson renamed because they were “offensive.”

Identity-based assaults on America and its institutions have invaded publicly funded universities, government agencies, and even the U.S. military — the very kind of discriminatory thinking that concerned patriots have been fighting against and dying for throughout our nation’s noble experiment with liberated equal opportunities and justice for all.

While always an imperfect work in progress, our nation has continued to move to right the wrongs of fallible human beings, building upon real progress as a beacon of hope and generous arm of support for the rest of the world.

American patriotism is embodied not in conceit, but rather is enshrined in lofty founding principles and judicially recognized non-segregate God-given rights which apply equally to everyone.

That’s nothing to be ashamed about.

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Larry Bell is an endowed professor of space architecture at the University of Houston. He founded the Sasakawa International Center for Space Architecture (SICSA) and the space architecture graduate program. He is the author of several books, including "Reinventing Ourselves: How Technology is Rapidly and Radically Transforming Humanity" (2019), "Thinking Whole: Rejecting Half-Witted Left & Right Brain Limitations" (2018), "Reflections on Oceans and Puddles: One Hundred Reasons to be Enthusiastic, Grateful and Hopeful” (2017), "Cosmic Musings: Contemplating Life Beyond Self" (2016), and "Scared Witless: Prophets and Profits of Climate Doom" (2015). He is currently working on a new book with Buzz Aldrin, "Beyond Footprints and Flagpoles."

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