“That no free government, or the blessings of liberty, can be preserved to any people, but by a firm adherence to justice, moderation, temperance, frugality, and virtue, and by frequent recurrence to fundamental principles.”
Last week I wrote about a checklist for every candidate derived from the constitution written for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts by John Adams. Several readers speculated the list resulted from Adams’ religious beliefs. However, the above statement was taken from the initial constitution drafted for the Commonwealth of Virginia by several notable Founders including George Mason and James Madison. In fact, it is interesting to learn that similar language can be found in the first constitutions of Vermont, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Connecticut.
Please take a moment to consider the diversity of the people who lived throughout the American colonies at the time of the Founding. Despite their different cultural backgrounds, religious belief systems, and life circumstances, they could agree that those in power over them should conduct themselves in a certain manner. The clarity of their thought matches that of Beauty Pool in Yellowstone National Park (as seen in the attached image). Their willingness to emphasize the need fundamental principles is so different from our hesitation to raise the issue of principled leadership at all. How differently decisions might be made today if they were based upon principles rather than backroom deals. The blessings of liberty, as secured by the fundamental principles of justice, moderation, temperance, industry and frugality, is What IS Right With America.