The Secret History of Great Men


If you want to attack the ignorance of the Republican Party, try to stand clear of all the things that are going to undermine your argument:
Thomas Jefferson recognized that education is vital to a functioning Democratic Republic.
In a letter to James Madison, Jefferson wrote: “And say, finally, whether peace is best preserved by giving energy to the government, or information to the people. This last is the most certain, and the most legitimate engine of government. Educate and inform the whole mass of the people. Enable them to see that it is their interest to preserve peace and order, and they will preserve them…. They are the only sure reliance for the preservation of our liberty.”
In light of Oklahoma’s recent attack on AP History, it would be easy to argue that today’s Republicans don’t recognize the value of a good education. However, the reality is that they do, and that the spreading attack on public education is far more sinister.
When the Patriot Act was signed, Bush and his ilk claimed the power to violate citizens’ private lives because, they said, there is no “right to privacy” in the United States. In that, they – perhaps purposefully – overlooked the history of America and the Declaration of Independence, signed on July 4, 1776. And they missed a basic understanding of the evolution of language in the United States.
I always laugh when these flowery "letters" from one Founding Father to the other is cited in order to support a theory or argument. These were men who knew when they had an audience and who knew how to speak to each other in private. I don't for a second think any of them really believed in God. They did believe in America, but it was an America ruled by a moneyed elite that kept the mobs at bay with promises of a token piece of the franchise and reasonable taxation, and it did not include free slaves, women with rights, or allowing non-property owning yahoos the right to vote. These were secretive, profane men who hated foreigners and fought amongst each other over women and personal slights. 
Just once, I'd like to see them portrayed the way they lived their lives--bawdy, drunken, filthy, toothless, and envious of one another, furiously hiding debts and embarrassments from one another, secretly wishing death would visit their rivals and mistresses would appear when summoned. They rolled out of soiled beds, rubbed raw and miserable with hangovers, often scratched and clawed by furious lovers and always short of cash. You know, like we are today, except with slightly better dental care and Grindr accounts and cleaner bed pans.
Thomas Jefferson was an elite planter from Virginia who used sex to terrorize his own female slaves. He was forever spending money he did not have. He was terrified of the mob rule that descended on America when the British failed to properly collect taxes and fees, which usually left him scrambling for relief. He was not a revolutionary--he was a smart man who used words to form arguments. He was a physical coward who did not hesitate to violate the law in the service of his own interests (see Aaron Burr, et al). He was not the paragon of virtue that can be summoned by a still-outraged lefty to refute the idea that the Patriot Act destroyed America. Man, it's 2015. Bush and Cheney were awful. But that's just half the story, and everybody knows it.
Bi-partisanship delivered the Patriot Act and renewed it. This phony idea that the Congress has to get along and allow freedom to be trampled so that neither side will be held accountable by a future terrorist attack is the real culprit. Without Democratic complicity, there is no Patriot Act and there are no restrictions on freedom (and there damned sure wouldn't have been an Iraq War, either).
Allowing the Republican Party to stampede America into wars, restrictions on freedom for women, minorities, and anyone with any kind of data whatsoever in the name of bi-partisanship is your real enemy these days. They are not reasonable people and they never will be, but we damned sure can't help ourselves when the Daddy Party wants something because our lapdog media and a weak and fractured Democratic Party can't stop going out on heavy petting dates with these psychopaths.