Our preachers roar salvo after salvo against the moral relativism that is eroding America’s soul. However, we can only understand this relativism when contrasted with the two moral absolutes that are America’s backbone: propriety and obedience, both of which fall under the rubric of responsible citizenship.
The greatest danger to our country is a moral fringe that attempts to absolutize relative negatives like not killing, not stealing, not lying and not exploiting. Such relativism would undermine our position as the world’s sole hegemon.
One of the duties of the responsible citizen is a willingness to suffer stoically for his country. The patriot who loves his country will embrace the downturns and disasters that are inherent to any well-run republic. Responsible citizens are fatalists who accept disaster, whether economic or natural, with a resigned dignity. (The angry reaction of the citizens of New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina was a tragic example of irresponsible citizenship.)
This courageous acceptance of disaster is especially important as the country enters a terminal phase of economic meltdown that will separate the wheat from the chaff. If ever there was an opportunity for American’s to show the world what we are made of, this is it. Destiny is calling, and it is the duty of every citizen to answer that call by sliding a rung or two down the economic ladder. It is a sacrifice that will cut across economic classes. The unemployed factory worker evicted from his home may take comfort in the fact that somewhere a CEO is being forced to sell his vacation home in Capri.
America’s salvation is that you and your vision are in the Oval Office. And your vision is a powerful one, torn as it is from the backside of our one dollar bill. There it is, for all who still possess a dollar to see: a thirteen tiered pyramid topped by the eye of God. The message it sends inspires, for it tells us that no matter how badly the base of the pyramid crumbles, the apex will remain untouched. This is driven home by the words that sit just above the Eye of God, ANNUIT COEPIS: “He Approves our Undertaking”.
It’s simple logic. Preserve the apex of the pyramid and the spare stones will tumble down to shore up the base. This is why, in times of economic disaster, the first duty of the citizen is to protect the apex. Once the apex is lost, the pyramid is reduced to rubble.
You summed up this iron law of economics in your March 14th speech to the New York Economic Club when you said, “I’m deeply concerned about law and regulation that will make it harder for the markets to recover.”
This is as it should be. America is the market; the market is America. So it is that as Mr. and Mrs. America begin to live out of the trunks of their cars, just as their pioneer forefathers lived out of the back of their covered wagons, they may take comfort in the knowledge that their sacrifices are making America secure and that the stirring tales of their impoverishment will be an inspiration to future generations as they pick through the trash piles of their local favela.