Sunday, April 3, 2011

What's So Great About America

As far as the age of a country goes, America is fairly young.  We've been around for only 235 years.  Countries like France, Germany, England, China, India and Japan have been around for 5 to 20 times that long. Yet, in our relatively short history, America has become the richest, most prosperous country in the world.  Less than 9 percent of the world's population own a car while 89 percent of American households own at least one car.  And that's just the tip of the iceberg.  If you earn less than $37,000 a year you are living below the poverty line in the U.S.  That's a little over $101.00 per day.  The poverty line worldwide is, are you ready for this, $1.45 per day.  A person in a third world country that makes a mere $2.00 a day is doing quite well if he has a job that pays every day.  How did we get to be so wealthy?

We tend to take freedom for granted in this country.  We can say anything within reason and expect no legal repercussions.  We can publish anything we please as long as it isn't a blatant lie that harms someone else.  We can go where we please and chose what kind of work we wish to put our hand to.  It is hard to imagine living in a place where your speech is regulated or you are assigned a job and you must work at it for your whole life.  Think of what it would be like if we had to go to City Hall and request permission to go and visit another town.  People all over the world live in just those conditions and even worse.  How did we get to be so free?

When someone says that we can't do something, we immediately ask, "Why not?"  We don't just bow down before a strong government machine and do their bidding.  A man with a dream can start a business in his own garage and, with hard work, can become the richest man in the world.  Some of the wealthiest people in the history of this country began with nothing, but through determination and a "never quit" attitude became millionaires.  And anyone with a little drive and a lot of elbow grease can start their own business in this country and live very well.  Name any challenge and an American can come up with a solution to it.  As this country was growing, people by the thousands moved farther and farther west.  Some settlers were so remote that they had no one to rely on but themselves.  And those people hacked a nation out of the wilderness.  How did we get to be so independent?

Any architect will tell you that to build a good building you must begin with a good foundation.  Without a firm foundation the building will topple.  But before you build the foundation proper groundwork must be done.  Only when the proper groundwork is laid, a solid foundation can be built and then you can build from there.  And that brings us to the answer to the questions that I asked earlier.  Our founding fathers, may God bless each and every one of them, knew the importance of proper groundwork and a solid foundation.  The groundwork to make this country as great as it has become was already laid for them.  If you read the words of the founding fathers, not just the words that the political correctness police have cleared, you will find that they relied on The Holy Bible to provide the groundwork to support the foundation that they were laying.  Then with belief and Faith in God they hammered out the greatest document ever written, The U. S. Constitution.  It covered only four pages of parchment.  A copy of it could be rolled up and stuck in your pocket.  And with that document in their pockets and The Bible in their hands, Americans set out to tame this land and give us the country that we love today.

A direct result of the Constitution was the Free Market System.  With the free market, you can compete for the consumer's dollar.  If you have a good or service to provide and the public wants it, you can become successful and live the American Dream.  Today many Socialist leaders deride the free market system.  They say it doesn't work and is a total joke.  Really?  I think Bill Gates would argue that point.  The late Sam Walton would have given you a two hour lecture on it.  Now here is the irony, one of the biggest critics of capitalism is Michael Moore.  He has become a multimillionaire by making movies attacking people who have become multimillionaires.

Did I say that this country is perfect?  No, I didn't.  Man is imperfect and anything that he makes, even with the guidance of the Lord, is going to be imperfect.  The only time a perfect country can exist is if there are no people in it. We look with greed and envy at what our neighbors have that we don't and say that this country is unfair.  Unfair?  Does your neighbor have something that he or she got unfairly, or did they just work harder to have more.  Aesop tell the fable of the grasshopper and the ant.  The ant worked hard all summer laying up stores for the winter while the grasshopper danced and played music while the weather was good.  When winter set in the grasshopper was hungry and he saw that the ant had plenty to eat so the grasshopper became bitter and jealous of the ant.  

This great country has had a checkered past.  We have made mistakes and have worked hard to correct them.  The founding fathers knew that the Constitution was not perfect, so they included in it the means to change it if need be.  No, this country is not perfect, but compared to any other country in this world it's a great place to be.  Come to think of it, this blog itself is a testament to the freedom and wealth that we enjoy in America.

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