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From the Track

The differences between a Republic and a Democracy

Kip Hamilton

(April, 2011) Let me begin this month with some sad news. On Friday, April 8th, Fairfield Fire & EMS suddenly and unexpectedly lost our friend and Vice President, Bill Chase, who, just the previous night had been doing what he loved…working the grill in the kitchen at our Thursday night Bingo. Bill was a rock of strength around the station, a friend to all and he will be greatly missed.

Also, please plan on stopping by the firehouse in Fairfield on Sunday, May 15 from 1-4 for our EMS Open House in recognition of National EMS Week. There will be some great demonstrations! The kids will love it… even the adult ones!

If you recall last month the question was raised whether ours was a single, democratic country. We talked about how the founders had established that each of our states was a separate, sovereign state united for a common purpose. But, what about that democracy thing? Remember back when you were a kid and having playground disputes settled with a loud chorus of "Majority Rules!" That’s a democracy in action… So is a lynch mob.

Even though a great many politicians, teachers, journalists and citizens nowadays believe that our Founders created a Democracy; that is absolutely not true. The Founders knew full well the differences between a Republic and a Democracy and they repeatedly and emphatically said that they had founded a Republic…."if we could keep it", as Ben Franklin said once.

Article IV Section 4, of the Constitution "guarantees to every state in this union a Republican form of government". Madison warned us of the dangers of democracies with these words, "Democracies have ever been spectacles of turbulence and contention; have ever been found incompatible with personal security or the rights of property; and have in general been as short in their lives as they have been violent in their deaths..."

Democracies always self-destruct when the non-productive majority realizes that it can vote itself handouts from the productive minority by electing the candidate promising the most benefits from the public treasury. When there are no longer enough producers to fund the legitimate functions of government and the socialist programs, the democracy will collapse, always to be followed by a Dictatorship. 47% of the households in our country pay no federal income taxes. What do you think will happen when that number reaches 52% or 55%?

Currently, only 43% of adults in our country are working and paying taxes, yet we are told that we are not doing enough. They say that "The Rich" are not paying their "fair share" and in order for the system to be more "equitable" that the people who are working and paying taxes must pay more. What??? How much is enough for these guys? What about the half of the country who are not working and being supported by those who are? Where is the equity in that?

We are told to do our "patriotic duty" and go along with the higher taxes. Like someone said, Socialism works fine until you run out of other peoples’ money. In 2007, just 4 years ago, our national debt was $167 Billion for the entire year. The amount of debt our career politicians incurred this past February was over $260 Billion in one month! They are now spending EIGHT times the amount of money they receive. If your family made $100K a year, that’s like putting $800K on your VISA. We borrow around $4 Billion each day. How are we ever going to pay this back?

Standards & Poor, the national credit rating agency just lowered their evaluation of the US Government’s official ability to maintain our AAA rating to "Negative." Unless Congress and the White House stop the fiscal shenanigans and get serious about cutting both the deficit (the year-to-year shortfall, now over $1 trillion) and the national debt (above $14 trillion and soaring), the "full faith and credit" of the United States is in danger of becoming an international joke… if it isn’t already.

Why have we reached this close to the edge of collapse?

Apathy. That’s why. Each one of us is to blame because we have allowed this nonsense to continue. We keep re-electing politicians to office who have been proven to be abject failures in directing this country. Why? Every day we hear of totally outrageous bills proposed, votes taken, money wasted, statements made by our career politicians and what do we do? We just shrug and shake our heads…maybe give that little "what the heck" laugh…you know the one… and that’s as far as it goes. Then we go back to doing whatever we were doing. Folks, we cannot do this any longer. We must get involved. ‘Don’t think there’s anything you can do?

Were you paying attention last November?

The primary election for 2011 is being held in PA on Tuesday, May 17th. Our patriotic duty is not to pay ever-increasing taxes, which will insure our once great country plunges over the cliff. Our single patriotic duty is to cast a vote…and not a vote for the status quo. We must start paying attention and take our representative duty seriously. A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Your vote does matter. You can make a difference. We must replace these career politicians who have grown over time to represent not the citizens who live in their districts, but the bankers, the unions and the corporate lobbyists who insure their re-election. We need to get back to our constitutional roots now more than ever. This movement needs to start with the local and state elections.

There are no more important elections in the history of our country than the local elections of 2011 and the national election next year. The very survival of our republic as we have known it hangs in the balance. If you don’t do anything else, make sure you are properly registered, and on Tuesday the 17th turn off the stupid TV and GO VOTE!

Read other articles by Kip Hamilton