Talk about gridlock. Would the earth come to a standstill? Of course, I realize this would never actually happen. Mainly because a large segment of us simply have no principles to stand on. However, just for the sake of argument, try to imagine this scenario. What if no one compromised their principles when it comes to politics. Or religion. Or with-in the family unit. Or at work. The repercussions would be enormous.

Imagine politics with ethics. It doesn’t matter if you’re ideology is skewed, the point is that you stick to it. If you’re a strict budget person, this would mean no compromises on spending. At all. That would mean the current tax deal being debated on the Hill would be dead. As it stands, both sides are claiming they have caved in too much and given in to the other side. Would it ever be possible to pass any legislation?

This would mean the end to most marriages as they are a case study in compromise. Religious tolerance is already a huge issue throughout the world. Islamic extremists already practice this thinking in that anyone who doesn’t convert to Islam must die. Nearly all wars are begun over religion or property as it is, this would only magnify it. Think about the workplace. How many times have you swallowed your pride and done what you had to do simply to keep your job?

So where is the magic line in which compromise becomes aborting your principles? It’s an important notion to consider. Particularly these days since the Democratic party has put class warfare at the top of their agenda. We’ve all heard the tax cuts for the rich rhetoric. Let’s be honest, in times of economic stress, it works. The have-nots are always jealous of the haves, but today it’s used as the primary argument to enact legislation. It’s an easy sell to the public, but it doesn’t hold up under un-biased review.

We know that the top 1% of wage earners pay 40% of the income tax. Extrapolate it out further and it even exceeds the Pareto 80/20 principle in which 80% of an effect is controlled by 20% of the cause. In other words, 20% of the taxpayers pay 80% of the taxes. It’s really even worse than that when you factor in capital gains and estate taxes. Point being that the rich already carry the water for most of us. Thank you rich people! Maybe I’ll send you a Christmas card.

The rhetoric has been stepped up since Obama took office starting with Joe the plumber. Redistributing wealth, social and economic justice and at some point you’ve made enough money. Throw in the evil, greedy corporations and the bankers and Obama has made a living out of demonizing anyone or any business with wealth. Except him and his political cronies of course. The actual number of what constitutes a wealthy person is a moving target. It depends on exactly what they can get passed through Congress.

I find the entire argument reprehensible and I’m in no way a rich guy. I think the entire class warfare argument is a diversion. They want us to focus on the aspect of the rich getting richer and that it’s un-American to your fellow citizens to continue to prosper while those less well-off struggle. Don’t buy it. It’s simply conditioning for more socialism. If you buy into the argument that everyone should have the same guaranteed results, the same outcome regardless of input, then you’ve lost your country. People try to nail Obama down to a number as what qualifies as rich or as having made enough money. That’s just playing into his game of more class envy.

If you artificially put a ceiling on what level of success you can achieve, you’ve killed the American dream and America itself. If I know that say $250k is the threshold for success and I will be heavily penalized above that, guess where my reported income will stop? It’s been tried before. If you think you can close any loopholes and ensure that any income exceeding that amount will be confiscated through an airtight taxation policy, you’re a fool. No way are people going to work that hard only to give away the fruits of the labors to an over-bearing government hell-bent on power and thirsty for re-election by way of your income. Not gonna happen.

I would venture to say the percentage of Americans who hold true to a set of principles is alarmingly small. This argument over taxation spills over into many aspects of our lives. Take the Constitution itself. Our courts are over-flowing with activist judges who wish to base law on precedent and mold the Constitution to the society of the day. They have no concept of what the Constitution means. It’s a framework. A solid base that will stand up to changes in society no one could have ever envisioned back then and, in fact, they didn’t need to. That’s the beauty of it. Well written law contains a vehicle in which to amend or modify it as the structure of society changes over time. Of course, we have the amendment process written into the Constitution just for this purpose. That’s why it’s timeless. It doesn’t have to account for advances in technology or industry or science etc., in order to remain relevant. But you must take your stand unto it based upon principle.

Compromise is possible while still upholding principle. It has to be or we have nothing. If everything is a free-for-all and based on your negotiating skills or how much leverage you have rather than principle, you cannot stand for anything in the end. So, my initial premise was what if everybody actually stood on principle. That, in fact, is the only thing we can hope for. Differing views and opinions are accounted for and built-in to the Constitution. Otherwise, what would be the point in even having it? If we were all in lockstep and thought the same, it wouldn’t be necessary.

The danger is when people base their beliefs on feelings and whims. Whichever way the wind is blowing. As the country song goes “You’ve got to stand for something or you’ll fall for anything”. When you’re influenced by things like class warfare, you let emotion guide your thought process. And there are lots of other things along these lines besides just class warfare. What matters is that you have a bedrock upon which will be your guide in formulating opinions and views. When your unsure about something, you always fall back upon it for guidance. It works like a charm. We have far, far too many people who don’t utilize it.

The people can still decide which direction this country heads going forward. But you can’t do it based on government telling you what you should think or be concerned about. If you let them dictate what the debate is, they get to set the terms and ultimately who wins and loses. If we don’t take a stand on principle based upon what this country was founded upon, all of us, we are in serious trouble. We will always have disagreements even if we do. You can’t have 310 million people living together and have otherwise. But we must uphold the basis of our liberty above all in order to keep it.

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6 thoughts on “What if everybody actually stood on principle?

  1. Great post, 5etester.

    I agree that the issue of class warfare has been pushed in the last few years. I personally know people who are guilty of doing it, even though they wouldn’t admit it. With our government pushing the idea, the cause isn’t helped.

    Interesting idea, that of standing on the principles on which the United States was founded. Actually, it’s a great idea and one that would work, if we could get our politicians to buy into it. Trouble is, most of them are not interested in those principles, unless they are a means to the end of gaining and retaining power.

    Again, great post. You have given me food for thought.

  2. Larry, I know that I, like you I’m sure, enjoy blogging for that very reason. Get people thinking and discussing these issues. Thanks for stopping by.

  3. So many people today have lost the ability to actually think for themselves, and take freedom for granted. The writing is on the wall, we have HUGE obstacles to overcome in order to continue to prosper.

  4. it’s a great idea and one that would work, if we could get our politicians to buy into it.

    To quibble just a bit, I’d rephrase that as “it’s a great idea and one that would work, if We the People would buy into it.” In the end, the government cannot do a thing without our consent. We may think we don’t consent, but as long as we consider politicians “leaders,” we are indeed in passive consent.

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