Thursday, February 26, 2009

Quote of the Day

"Of all enemies to public liberty war is, perhaps, the most to be dreaded because it comprises and develops the germ of every other. War is the parent of armies; from these proceed debt and taxes. And armies, and debts, and taxes are known instruments for bringing the many under the domination of the few." -- James Madison

Emotionally, Jefferson is my favorite founder, with his eloquence and his zeal for liberty, but over the years I have come to believe that perhaps Madison was the wisest of the founders, the one who gave the most sustained thought to the kinds of institutions, given the imperfect nature of human beings, most conducive to liberty. The constitution he fathered was not perfect, and he had a weakness for embargoes, but it facilitated and preserved liberty for a good long time and still has some residual power to do so even today, despite having been shredded and twisted in so many ways by all three branches of government. Durk and Sandy, my old friends since college days (I really should call them; it's been a while) have admired Madison for a long time, and I believe they are right to do so.

No comments: