His Voice: It’s a republic, if you can keep it
by By Charles Norton/Submitted to the Tracy Press
Jul 20, 2012 | 4642 views | 29 29 comments | 4 4 recommendations | email to a friend | print
On Sept. 18, 1787, a woman history identified as Mrs. Powell is said to have asked Benjamin Franklin, as he departed the meeting which enacted the U.S. Constitution, “Well, Dr. Franklin, do we have a monarchy or a republic?”

Franklin’s historic reply: “A republic, if you can keep it!”

The Constitution is a remarkable document. It is the document that establishes America’s supremacy among the gaggle of all other political systems, past and present, on Earth.

The combination of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution launched “The great American experiment,” which has become the world’s template for individual rights and freedom.

The public must be protected from the excesses of government, is the message of both documents.

Today, the Declaration and Constitution are facing arguably the most onerous threat against their survival since 1861. That threat comes not from a Hitler, Stalin or foreign royalty. More insidiously, it comes from within.

While historically there has always been friction between supporters of more government and less government, which have stayed within the boundaries of the Constitution, the past two years have seen acts by our government that challenge, if not violate, the core of American political principles.

The blame for the current state of political friction lies with those who promote the notion that America, if not the planet, needs more government to solve problems.

Those who embrace this notion call themselves “liberals” or “progressives” — both euphemisms for “socialists.”

Collectively, liberals are not fun to be around. Liberals don’t like to see other people enjoying themselves. So they do all they can to spread misery around.

Liberals are convinced that they are smarter than the rest of us and are driven to making rules to govern our behavior. Need I mention lightbulbs, gasoline blends, fireplaces, “paper or plastic,” press 1 for English, Happy Meals, Big Gulp drinks, etc?

Liberals are also totally devoid of the principles of economics. How else can one explain the notion of raising taxes to escape a recession?

Some liberal-inspired outcomes are merely irritants, with no permanent damage to the American system. However, the bailouts, deficit-debt action, student loan system takeover and health care takeover do note bode well for the preservation of liberty for the American people.

Further, the questionable action of the chief justice on compulsory insurance is undermining confidence in the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court decision regarding the Affordable Care Act has given the executive and legislative branches a power not enumerated in the Constitution. That is extremely dangerous to our freedom.

Personally, I am obliged to honor my oath “to protect and defend the Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic. And I accept this responsibility willingly, without reservation or purpose of evasion, so help me, God.”

Millions of men and women have served in the armed forces of the United States, from the war for independence to today. More than 1 million have given their lives fighting for the American Way. I do not recall any who have fought to preserve socialism.

• Charles Norton is a Tracy resident and a retired U.S. Marine Corps member.
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LuckyInTracyNot
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July 24, 2012
In a week or two we will read another letter but from a pro-Obama supporter saying how good he is, the best thing since sliced bread and canned beer. I can't wait until November!
doors17
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July 25, 2012
Good morning LITN. Today it seems to me that Romney has to overcome the same obstacle that John Kerry faced when he ran against Bush in 04. There didn’t seem to be any enthusiasm to vote for Kerry as a pro-Kerry vote, but more as an anti-Bush vote. It has that same feel to me today with I don’t really see any pro-Romney supporters, but anti-Obama.

My guess is Obama will win by about 4 percentage points unless the Romney campaign can make him more appealing to vote for him, and not just to vote against the President. Of course keep in mind I’ve been playing the same lotto numbers for 24 years (which I’m sure will finally come up the week I die) so when it comes to predicting the future, what the hell do I know.

backinblack
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July 23, 2012
If you boys & girls don't mind I'd like to throw my 2 cents in on one issue. It was absolutely the right decision to drop the the A bomb & H bomb on Hiroshima & Nagasaki. Truman's decision although controversial saved millions. I'm sure people who don't know a thing about our wars especially in this case WWII, will strongly disagree. However, island hopping up to Japan and an ultimate invasion would have caused some of the bloodiest fighting in history.

The Japanese had a very good and very disciplined military and when the element of desperation set in which was already happening, it would have been horrendous for both sides. Take the fierocity of the fighting on Iwo Jima and Okinawa, the Kamikazi attacks, then multiply by maybe 100 and you get the idea.

Ornley, I agree about not liking war and I'd like to think most people feel the same, however it is because of human nature a neccessary thing at times. That being said I don't like that we have moved away from going in to win. Vietnam changed everything. I know you are aware of the reasons so there's no need to say anything more than the US population and the politicians lost that war, not our troops.

cont..

backinblack
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July 23, 2012
For one we should have crossed any border and done whatever it took to destroy the Ho Chi Minh trail. I'd be interested in hearing your opinion but shutting down that supply line to me would have changed the complexion of the war. I also don't think we should have reined in our massive air superiority due to public pressure.

The day we as a nation start conducting war based on public opinion and politicians desires to please the people in order to get re-elected, is the day we should just stay on the sidelines.

Here's a good what if, what if we would have cut our military loose and gone all the way to Baghdad in 91? Hmmmm
backinblack
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July 23, 2012
For one we should have crossed any border and done whatever it took to destroy the Ho Chi Minh trail. I'd be interested in hearing your opinion but shutting down that supply line to me would have changed the complexion of the war. I also don't think we should have reined in our massive air superiority due to public pressure.

The day we as a nation start conducting war based on public opinion and politicians desires to please the people in order to get re-elected, is the day we should just stay on the sidelines.

Here's a good what if, what if we would have cut our military loose and gone all the way to Baghdad in 91? Hmmmm
doors17
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July 23, 2012
Back In Black, good morning. I agree with you on the reasons you gave on why it was necessary for Truman’s decision to bomb Japan. Not a position I would want to make, but that’s how history separates and judges great leadership.

I also agree with Ornley with not liking war, but then does anyone? While unfortunately it’s necessary as a last resort I feel uncomfortable acting as a cheerleader while I’m sitting on my fat butt, and not in harm’s way. We can disagree with the politician’s reasons but I do feel we should never question those who are fighting and give them whatever support we can give.

When you changed you name to Back In Black, I knew right away what it meant. I never thought the day would come when AC/DC or Led Zeppelin would be considered for the rocking chair crowd. Does this mean we’re getting old? Can’t be. Good taste never gets old.

Ornley_Gumfudgen
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July 22, 2012
I wonder.

If Truman had of let MacArthur drive up ta th North Korean border, instead of firein him because he an his party (Th Democrats) were worryin that MacArthur was gonna run fer president, if history would have tarned out differently?



North Korea, Vietnam, Iraq ect.

Don't like war, never did but sometimes ya just gotta take out th trash before th trash overwhelms ya an ends up takin ya out.

Is that conservative or liberal or just good common sense?

Truman agonized over his decision ta use th bomb on Japan. But it did save million's of lives by bringin th war ta an abrupt end. Yep, a horrific thang but which would have been worse, two ta three more years of world war, killin millions, or th slaughter of some 200,000 souls livin in Japan at

Truman was a man, not a saint an he had his own share of mistakes as well as successes in his administration.

The difference between him an politicians taday is that he cherished freedom an human rights where as taday's politicians are more consarned with garnerin personal wealth an political power an will do an say virtually anythang ta get it.

I respect Truman as a president but certainly he was no savior an no saint.
Ornley_Gumfudgen
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July 22, 2012
Sorry about that, got messed up on th ole computer keyboard an some thoughts got disorganized. Remove, "Truman agonized over his decision ta use th bomb on Japan. But it did save million's of lives by bringin th war ta an abrupt end. Yep, a horrific thang but which would have been worse, two ta three more years of world war, killin millions, or th slaughter of some 200,000 souls livin in Japan at" an place it at th end.

Then continue, livin in Japan at th time?

Had Truman an his fellow Democrats been less consarned with MacArthur's impendin run fer th presidency, as people in our nation loved MacArthur at th time because of his deeds in WWII an in Korea, th world taday just might be a better place.

Harry had a statement, "Th buck stops here." His successes an mistakes then stop with him. He wasn't all that bad as a president but then again he wasn't all that good either. Point in fact, he didn't want ta be president at all because he was well aware of his shortcomings.

HarryTrumanConservative
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July 22, 2012
This might come as a surprise to you Ornley, but Truman could care less about MacArthur wanting to run for President. Truman had a very deep respect for the Constitution and the "rule of law". Truman had given VERY SPECIFIC orders to NOT cross the 38th parallel.

As a General under the command of the commander-in-chief, MacArthur disobeyed a DIRECT order of the commander-in-chief. You don't think Truman didn't know and understand how very popular MacArthur was? He sure wasn't stupid in that regard! He knew exactly how unpopular he would become at firing him, but he didn't care. He was acting as the commander-in-chief and one of his subordinates just committed insubordination.

Without any consultation Truman boarded the plane with his Secret Service detail and ordered the pilot to head to South Korea. Unbeknownst to anyone except his secret service when he arrived to MacArthur's camp he stayed in the car and ordered a SS agent to get MacArthur and to bring him by force if necessary. After a 20 minute private meeting with just the 2 of them, Truman ordered MacArthur out of the car and flew back to Washington. While getting back on the plane he looked at the lead SS agent and stated, "I just fired the son of a bitch!" ..... more
HarryTrumanConservative
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July 22, 2012
No one knew what Truman had done until he got back to Washington and made the announcement. The fact was that MacArthur had not violated Truman's order, but MacArhthur had violated the commander-in-chief's order. Popularity be damned at that time, Truman could care less about how unpopular he would become. He was very concerned about his duty to uphold the Constitution, no matter what it cost.

Captain Harry Truman was a bonafide war hero in WWI, He was so loved and respected as a military leader because he would NEVER give a command to his men that he would not due himself.

Granted, Truman knew he was not perfect but all decisions made by him during his Presidency were always for the good of the country, never for the political.
doors17
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July 23, 2012
HTC, When it comes to your opinion on President Truman, this is where I find myself in agreement with you. :)
Ornley_Gumfudgen
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July 23, 2012
HTC

Historical documents tell a different story regardin th political consarn regardin MacArthur's possible presidential ambitions. Suggest ya read em.

As far as "the good of the country" had Korea been properly terminated th outcome of th world today would look much differently. But that's 20/20 hindsight.

Was he right in firin MacArthur fer not followin orders? Yes, he was, he had that authority. But perhaps he should have listened ta his military commander an his military advisers on th subject of continuin th push th Chinese out of North Korea an properly endin th conflict.

It's a matter of opinion as ta whether or not Truman's decision was based on politics because it cartanly wern't a good military one and is one reason why th DMZ between North an South Korea is a tender box an North Korean citizens suffer th oppressions they suffer taday at th hands of a self appointed, or rather father appointed god.

Had MacArthur been allowed by Truman ta finish th job thangs would be much different taday.
rosa62
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July 21, 2012
In short, Harry S. Truman was not one to attempt to categorize others as you are trying to do. He believed every man should be free to live his life as he sees fit.

I would suggest you reconsider your username as it tarnishes the honorable reputation of the man whose name you use as your own.
HarryTrumanConservative
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July 21, 2012
rosa62 - I do not need to reconsider my username. I happen to have made a lifelong study of Harry Truman and had personal contact and correspondence with his daughter Margaret until her passing in January, 2008.

I have personally restored many of his Presidential and Senatorial letters and custom framed them myself. I own 500 plus authentic original newspaper photos of Truman a number of rare items from Truman and in the Oval office during his Presidency,

You are correct about his honesty and integrity. It was second to none. He is our only President to leave office poorer than when he entered. He was a failed farmer on the family farm for 9 years. He understood independence and freedom along with liberty.

You are very wrong on a couple of points however.He was a very successful businessman after WWI with his business partner, Mr. Jacobs. I have authentic photos of Truman and Jacobs together in their beautiful haberdashery. There Truman made quite a bit of money but ended up with very little of it because he literally gave it all away to his Army buddies who fell on hard times during the depression......more
HarryTrumanConservative
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July 22, 2012
Truman was not only a Democrat but he was the MOST LIBERAL Democrat in Washington during his Presidency. However, with his morals, character, beliefs and actual life experiences, in today's real world he would be a hard headed true Conservative. His vision of his socialized medicine plan, was under a system that was made next to impossible to get a welfare check without being completely incapacitated to work. And then that welfare check came from the state and not the Feds. Truman despised handouts to those who could do an honest days work. Remember, this was not during the depression. This was during his Presidency.

To say Truman did not categorize others is a complete insult to Harry and his memory. That is what made Truman so great and so loved. He was the most biased politician Washungton DC had ever seen! You obviously never heard the battle cry of his day, "Give 'em Hell, Harry!"

His complete disgust with the Republican Party of that day was truly invigorating for his supporters. In fact, the Press could not print what he really said because you couldn't print or use those words in movies back then. His adjectives were very blunt and even obscene.

You always new where Harry stood on every issue because he let you know in very BLUNT language, You also couldn't buy Harry because he was way too honest for Washington.

He became very popular as a Senator because as member of the Senate Committee overseeing defense contracts during WWII, he of his own accord personally drove around the country visiting many of the companies with the contracts. He personally documented all the inefficiencies he saw and saved the taxpayers over $300,000. In todays world, it would equal $300 billion. It was an astounding amount back then with the national debt at only 3 or 4 billion dollars.

I know that Harry is presently continuously rolling over and over in his grave with what the Democrats are doing today. The Democrat Party of today is an absolute insult to the memory of the GREAT Harry Truman.

You really need to study up on Truman to know what he was really like.

Therefore, the name HarryTrumanConservative and proud of it.
rosa62
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July 21, 2012
Keep in mind HTC that the late "Great" President Harry S. Truman was a Democrat in the purest sense of the word.

He believed in an honest day's work for an honest day's pay and in doing the right thing even when no one is looking. In fact, his honor was such that he refused a Presidential retirement when offered.

President Truman was a man of the people and he made his bones as a struggling businessman before he ever considered politics. His business ventures were unsuccessful but he did try it on his own which is commendable.

Harry S. Truman was noted for the following sayings"

"No government is perfect. One of the chief virtues of a democracy is that its defects are always visible and under democratic process can be pointed out and corrected." March 12, 1947.

"As Americans we believe that every man should be free to live his life as he wishes. He should be limited only by his responsibility to his fellow countrymen." June 29, 1947.

What he meant was that no form of government, or political system, is perfect and that men should be honorable and unlimited in their pursuits, unless they fail to serve their fellow man.

More-
HarryTrumanConservative
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July 21, 2012
When it comes to a Conservative, you are NOT a conservative is you are liberal on social issues and conservative on economic issues, they call that the modern day Republican OR Democrat depending which issue you are conservative or liberal on.

Example: As a Conservative I don't want taxpayer dollars (only 49% of Americans pay income taxes) to pay for a women's abortion. That is flat out unconstitutional. Nowhere in the Constitution does it call for that.

However, if a woman wants to get an abortion and pay for it on their own with their money, that is an issue that will come ONLY between God and the woman. I have no part in that and because of her freedom given to her by the ruling of the Supreme Court, it is legal for her to do that.

It should also be illegal for taxpayer money to be spent on that as that is an issue NOT specified in the Constitution. The "general welfare" clause in the Constitution has been so abused and misused and misrepresented by liberals who want somebody else to pay for their free abortion.

I refer you to James Madison's writings in The Federalist Papers and Thomas Jefferson's letters regarding the general welfare clause to make my point.

Americans are sorely under educated on what the founders intended and liberals have bastardized what the founders actually intended with the "general welfare clause".

I am NOT name calling. I am merely calling the reality of what the political agenda of this President really is.
HarryTrumanConservative
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July 21, 2012
Doors17 states: They are also sick and tired of the childish behavior with the name calling of labeling someone a socialist, racist, nazi, communist or redneck just because they disagree or vote differently than you do.

Great line Doors17. Calling Obama a Socialist is NOT name calling if that is the political philosophy they promote. Hellooooo! Now where did I say I was a Republican? How do you know how I vote?

I am a Conservative in the true sense of the word, on social and economic issues. Few Republicans in Washington are true Conservatives . That's why they call them a RINO. RINO, Conservative, Liberal, Socialist, Marxist is NOT name calling when they promote that political philosophy as part of their personal agenda. Where do you get off calling that name calling.

The FACTS are this: Socialism FAILS every time its tried. Hello Greece, France and most all European countries. Marxism has failed every time it has been tried.

Margaret Thatcher ACED it when she said "you will eventually run out of money when you've spent all the money the other person has." This is what happens in wealth redistribution which is precisely what Obama is promoting. .....more
doors17
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July 22, 2012
I don't care how you vote or which side you vote for. You gave us your opinion that moderates and independents are gutless. I replied back to you with my opinion why I disagree.
LuckyInTracyNot
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July 21, 2012
very good letter and well said Charles. Some people however will not fully understand the concept of our freedoms nor respect our constitution and only when it applies to their own personal needs when trashing our economy and desires to burn our flags and do other anti American bad deeds. Some people will also take my responce as someone who only see's those some people who only want to see America destroyed, I agree with that because I as you keep an eye on our freedom. Barrack Obama said he would be a one term president if he could not change the economy for the better and he has only made it worse. Now he runs for a second term calling for jobs first. If he is so certain about it then why didn't he get it correct the first time around? He never planned on it and he spent his term laying a foundation of Obamacare-Socialised-Medicine so our country had the basic needs for a socialistic government where the government runs the nation and we don't run our lives as we knew it or know it, whats left of it. The vast population will see Obamacare as a good thing when faced with nothing in the long run and as a carrot to others when faced with more government officials just like Obama
HarryTrumanConservative
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July 21, 2012
The 40% NO CLUE folks call themselves moderates or independents because they have little idea what's going on and refuse to take a stand. They are the gutless.

Here's the way it works in the real world; America is despised by most all nations because of our freedom and independence created by very hard working people who loved liberty more than the countries of Europe, particularly England. Because this nation was founded by very hard working independent thinkers who came to call themselves capitalists, we have the Constitution as our founding document. We have declared ourselves independent.

We are despised by most countries because their freeloader socialist countries are ticked that the RICH Americans won't support their freeloader lifestyle.

It is called right vs. wrong, good vs. bad. It is also called LIBERTY which BHB obviously despises based on his actions. Wake up!!!!!
doors17
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July 21, 2012
Moderates and Independents are not gutless. With Independents you'll find their reason is because they are completely discussed and fed up with both parties that they don't want to be associated with either one of them. They are also sick and tired of the childish behavior with the name calling of labeling someone a socialist, racist, nazi, communist or redneck just because they disagree or vote differently than you do.

With Moderates most don't stand in line and support the parties platform 100% of the time with the party they're registered to. This is not gutless, just different than you.
HarryTrumanConservative
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July 21, 2012
To MODist, longtimetracyrez, adjkpm doors17:

What planet are you folks on? Have you no clue what is going on in America under the leadership of BHB? I suggest you study the word "Socialism" and get an idea of what it means. This is exactly what agenda BHB is pushing.

To make the ridiculous statement you folks make you must be liberals or "liberals in denial". You folks appear to be totally clueless.

Mr. Norton very succinctly states what is happening in our country. Are you folks inferring that BHB is NOT the greatest divider of Americans in our Presidential history. He has divided rich, middle class and poor like no one ever has? He divides blacks, whites, and Latinos like never before.

BHB is the president of the welfare state and could care less about hard working Americans who pay for the welfare state that BHB is growing hat unprecedented levels. HELLOOOOOOO!!!!!

Why is ObamaCare called "socialized medicine"? Here's a newsflash for you folks: "Socialized" happens to be "Socialism" in its' purist form!

It folks like you that make America what it is today, 20% liberal, 40% conservative and 40% have absolutely NO CLUE. The NO CLUE!

MODist
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July 21, 2012
HTC, did you run out of coffee? If you think for a minute I am a liberal you need to put on your clue cap.
adjkp
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July 23, 2012
Harry - How are my comments ridiculous? Would they have been better if I used CAPS to emphasize them like you elect to do? I was simply stating that associating one complete group of people was not fair. Do you believe it is?

Going off on people who share their opinions here is childish. Like I said in my post, go ahead and disagree but try to give reasons why. We are all adults here so let's try to behave like one.

Without examples it just sounds like you are unhappy and have to lash out at something.
MODist
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July 20, 2012
Liberals and conservatives are not political parties. Do not mix them up with the Republican and democrat parties. These two parties play the same games while dividing the people. What I think Charles means is the mindset and thinking of people. The Government didn't create this Country, the people did. And it is up to the people to preserve the ideal of the country against those that would use the government to destroy itself from within.
longtimetracyrez
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July 21, 2012
Liberals and conservatives are not political entities but they are cthe ideology that form the basis for both parties. That much is apparent from the idealogical divide that permeates the country now. I agree with the other responders to this article, there is nothing to gain from yet again demonizing and ranting on how one mind set has hijacked this country. It can be argued that both political parties have done that to the country. We stand nothing to gain as a country by being divided - since the people are the government. Self serving rants such as the letter writer do nothing to better the Republic.
adjkp
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July 20, 2012
No wonder so many people are sick of politics.

Blaming one side of the political aisle, or one group of people, is short sighted and sad.

"Collectively, liberals are not fun to be around. Liberals don’t like to see other people enjoying themselves. So they do all they can to spread misery around" What a depressing thing to say. How can you possibly know every liberal in this country to make an educated comment?

I know people that are strong liberals and strong conservatives. I don't agree with everything they believe in but I certainly don't consider them not fun to be around or not seeing people enjoying themselves.

If you disagree with someone stat your reasons and leave it at that. Demonizing an entire group of people, because you don't agree with them, does nothing more than discrediting your comments.
doors17
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July 20, 2012
Well said adjicp. I agree with you completely. Both sides are equally guilty of playing this nonsense of demonizing each other. It gotten so ridiculous that those that do come across as cartoonish.

At least for one day, I hope the left and right can put their differences aside and come together as a nation and show support to the community of Aurora, Colorado, the innocent victims and their families.

My thoughts and prayers to all of you.


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