Con­sen­sus of fu­ture not di­vi­sive war­fare

The Covington News - - Opinion - Wil­liam Perug­ino is ac­tive in lo­cal and re­gional pol­i­tics and can be reached at 3pe­rug­i­nos@bel­lsouth.net.

On Aug. 19, Mau­rice Carter wrote an ar­ti­cle en­ti­tled “Draw­ing a new bat­tle line” in which he ac­cuses Paul Ryan of sup­port­ing only in­di­vid­u­al­ism and fight­ing against col­lec­tivism for the com­mon good. Carter goes on to say that Paul Ryan blindly fol­lows the phi­los­o­phy of Ayn Rand to the ex­clu­sion of a fo­cus on the wel­fare of the U.S.

This com­men­tary is wrong on so many fronts that I must re­spond to Mau­rice’s al­le­ga­tions for fear of some read­ers be­ing falsely in­flu­enced by the in­cen­di­ary writ­ing.

To be­gin with, our coun­try does not need to con­jure up an­other new is­sue to paint the Repub­li­can Party as di­vi­sive and the Democrats as right­eous for the col­lec­tive good.

Carter draws a vague con­nec­tion be­tween Paul Ryan’s af­fec­tion for the nov­els of Ayn Rand and his po­lit­i­cal phi­los­o­phy of life. This is a shame­ful and lu­di­crous anal­y­sis of a dy­namic pa­triot ded­i­cated to lead­ing our coun­try out of the eco­nomic and gov­ern­men­tal night­mare we find our­selves in.

It is po­lit­i­cal fash­ion to­day to den­i­grate Amer- ican ex­cep­tion­al­ism and rugged in­di­vid­u­al­ism. A real time ex­am­ple of that painful at­ti­tude is the state­ment re­cently made by Pres­i­dent Obama while speak­ing at a cam­paign rally: “You didn’t make that. Some­one else did.”

Un­for­tu­nately, that self­ish and volatile be­hav­ior of class war­fare has been brought to New­ton County by Mau­rice Carter.

Con­gress­man Paul Ryan was the only in­di­vid­ual with the in­tel­li­gence, courage and strength to write, pro­pose and present a Fed­eral Bud­get that would pre­serve So­cial Se­cu­rity and Med­i­caid in a vi­ciously bru­tal and dan­ger­ous po­lit­i­cal en­vi­ron­ment.

Did Con­gress­man Ryan do this for an Ayn Rand phi­los­o­phy of life for in­di­vid­ual gain?

Ob­vi­ously not. We all know the ex­treme criticism and out­ra­geous ac­cu­sa­tions made at him be­cause of his coura­geous ef­fort to put our coun­try on a pos­i­tive di­rec­tion. Se­na­tor Harry Reid re­fused to even al­low the bud­get to go to the floor of the Se­nate for a vote. Where was the col­lec­tivism for the good of the coun­try then?

Mr. Carter goes on to say that: “Our So­ci­ety ad­heres to in­di­vid­u­al­is­tic prin­ci­ples of Cap­i­tal­ism be­cause we know no bet­ter way.”

This is such a stun­ning and breath­tak­ing state­ment de­scrib­ing our her­itage that I am ashamed and be­wil­dered that an ed­u­cated ci­ti­zen of New­ton County would pro­claim that po­si­tion in pub­lic print.

In our des­per­ate eco­nomic times in New­ton County, it will be the rugged in­di­vid­u­als who will not be afraid to op­pose pop­u­lar propo­si­tions to spend tax­payer dol­lars for un­nec­es­sary projects that we can­not af­ford but are pro­moted and pop­u­lar­ized by spe­cial in­ter­est in­di­vid­u­als and groups. It takes courage on the part of the in­di­vid­ual to fight against those pro­grams that do not im­prove the com­mon good.

The U.S. is ex­cep­tional be­cause of its univer­sal found­ing prin­ci­ples. At the heart of these prin­ci­ples is the be­lief that peo­ple are free by na­ture and pos­sess in­her­ent rights. The use each of us makes of these rights will nat­u­rally be dif­fer­ent, and the out­comes of those choices will nat­u­rally dif­fer too. But the choice re­mains ours. Free­dom is thus in­ex­tri­ca­bly bound up with liv­ing our lives as we see fit. This is self gov­ern­ment in the truest sense of the term. We the peo­ple need not slav­ishly de­fer to ex­perts. We can be trusted to gov­ern our­selves.

As John Adams stated: “Our Con­sti­tu­tion was made only for a moral and reli­gious peo­ple. It is wholly in­ad­e­quate to the gov­ern­ment of any other.” In the U.S., gov­ern­ment re­quires not merely the con­sent of the gov­erned. It rests ul­ti­mately on the abil­ity of the peo­ple to gov­ern them­selves. The first role, the first duty of the peo­ple is to en­sure that they re­main vir­tu­ous and free.

WIL­LIAM PERUG­INO COLUM­NIST

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