Sunday, July 18, 2010

Candace de Russy and St. Augustine on American Decline

My friend Candace de Russy makes interesting points on Big De Russy observers that former Justice Department attorney Christian Adams has repeatedly brought to the media's attention shocking revelations that the Obama administration has instructed lawyers to disregard cases involving white victims and black perpetrators; has insisted that the DOJ's election law division NOT enforce voter fraud laws particulary concerning fraudulent voting by non-citizens; and "is now considering a submission by Ike Brown, a Democratic Party Chairman in Mississippi, to run elections in Mississippi, even though a federal court already stripped him of that authority after he victimized minority white voters and otherwise prevented people from voting based on their party loyalties."

All of this smacks of racism in the Obama administration, which is not news.  Obama's followers are left wing brownshirts. But the story had some synchronicity with a book I'm reading, Book One of St. Augustine's City of God. 

Augustine, originally from North Africa, wrote in the last years of the Roman Empire. His arguments in Book One oppose the claim that Rome's adoption of Christianity led to Alaric's sacking of the city and the Empire's ultimate fall.  Augustine argues that self indulgence led to Rome's fall.   Here and now we have a president elected on the basis of public whim and hysteria who adopts socialist policies that repeatedly have been associated with decline.  America's self indulgent prosperity sounds something like the prosperity that Augustine argues led to Rome's fall (Book I, chapter 31):

"And greed and sensuality in a people is the result of that prosperity which the great Nascia in his wisdom maintained should be guarded against when he opposed the removal of a great and strong and wealthy enemy state. His intention was that lust should be restrained by fear, and should not issue in debauchery, and that the check on debauchery should stop greed from running riot. With those vices kept under restraint, the morality which supports a country flourished and increased, and permanence was given to the liberty which goes hand-in-hand with such morality."

While the construction of theaters, one of Augustine's concerns, does not trouble me the decline in American morality does. The nation no longer takes democracy or the moral principles on which democracy depends seriously.  Part of the problem is the decline of public debate because of the poor quality of the most popular media outlets.  Just as with Rome, American decline is a long process.  It began more than a century ago and is accelerating.

Mr. Obama is hardly of interest to me at this point.   I do not doubt that his administration is ugly, corrupt and stupid, nor do I doubt that the media that whisked him into office is dysfunctional and destructive.  None of these institutions are worth worrrying about because they are not worth saving.  America must be reconstructed from the bottom up.  We are living in the days of American democracy's well-deserved collapse.


Doug Plumb said...

BTW: Great post !!

Doug Plumb said...

I think that the way to rebuild is for people to learn about the law, ie: not become attorneys, but lawyers. A civilization sits on a foundation of justice and countries cannot afford to have outsiders (BAR association attorneys) run their justice system.

With justice anything is possible, and justice can only be preserved with a widespread understanding of the law. You can only build on a solid foundation.

I just posted three articles, one of which I wrote, that explains the legal (read "legal" not lawful in itself but sanctioned by law) system and what is fundamentally wrong with it.

There is no doubt whatsoever in my mind that we can dig ourselves out of this, using only our minds and not a single bullet. We must become the law again.

I also agree that we are going the way of Soddam and Gamorrah. We need productive rather than counter-productive laws to stop this.