Why, man, he doth bestride the narrow world
Like a Colossus, and we petty men
Walk under his huge legs, and peep about
To find ourselves dishonourable graves.
Men at some time are the masters of their fates:
The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars,
But in ourselves, we are underlings.
Julius Caesar, William Shakespeare
On Monday night, I sat and watched the debate among the currently-announced Republican candidates for the Presidency. As of this writing, I am still searching for a candidate to support.
I am not still searching because, like the media continues to argue, the current field is inadequate. No, this field, together with others who are still openly considering a run at the Presidency, is filled with highly qualified, and highly gifted men and women who represent virtually every facet of modern conservative thought in this country. Each one of them would make a better President than the current occupant of the White House.
Moreover, I believe each of these men and women understand the urgency of the fiscal problems facing this country and the profound impact they will have on our future, and the world’s future, if they are not addressed immediately.
What is lacking in this field is not purpose or courage; it is, rather, an understanding of how we can correct the problems we face and still function as a society of free men and women. That is, when all is said and done, and all the budgets have been cut and the programs have been dismantled or restructured, how will we be the “masters” of our “fates” going forward. Unless the next President formulates the answer to that question correctly, and persuades the American people that his or her answer provides the correct path forward, he or she will fail. Unless the American people understand the new path they must follow and commit themselves to follow that path, eventually old habits will re-emerge and new federal schemes will be created to address our many problems, our appetite for larger and larger government will swallow our future, and we will return to our self-imposed position as “underlings” to another “Colossus”.
The answer the next President must formulate should be based on an inherent trust in you and me to govern ourselves, our families, and our neighborhoods without “guidance” from a “Colossus” in Austin or Washington. Then, we must look in the mirror and commit ourselves to live as truly free men and women: as men and women willing to sacrifice and be responsible for ourselves, our families, and our communities; as men and women who are willing to do the important work of governing our communities, rather than delegating that work to others.
If the next President has that trust in his fellow citizens, and if we make the commitment to accept the responsibilities that come with that trust, then we can truly limit government in size, scope and cost to its proper functions at every level. We, then, will be the masters of our own fates and give our children the chance to be the masters of their fates in the future. We, then, will be the society our Settlers and Founders intended.
When I find that candidate, he or she will have my full support.