“Perhaps the sentiments contained in the following pages are not yet sufficiently fashionable to procure them general favor; a long habit of not thinking a thing wrong, gives it a superficial appearance of being right, and raises at first a formidable outcry in defense of custom. But the tumult soon subsides. Time makes more converts than reason.”
From “Common Sense”
February 14, 1776
The approach and arrival of the Bicentennial year has evoked considerable analyses of North American political retrospective. While most diagnoses conclude an ailing bi-centenarian suffering from blunted thrust to blemished future, few prescribe remedies for this ailing body politic. Although two hundred years ago, a large portion of the conservative establishment of the Colonies was willing to plan and then cause a radical change in their governance, the sense of adventure that Americans are so abundantly endowed with in myth has so atrophied in this supermaterialistic society that none appear even able to conceive, let alone execute, the radical change in governance now needed to save this, our citadel of mongrelism. For, unless a counterforce can soon be generated to restrain the centripetals of the unreasoning democracy exercising presumed political rights with increasing inarticularity, soon the very atoms of our society may be split.
Common sense indicates that in order to prevent a nuclear explosion and possible catastrophe, prompt action must be taken.
An appropriate time to adopt a Declaration embodying the principles of this Manifesto is July 4, 1976.
If the proposed Declaration were issued in 1976, then, perhaps, with sentimental appropriateness, a new Constitution can be readied for adoption in 1986, the 200th anniversary of the original.
In order to create a new constitution embodying the principles of this Manifesto, there will be required an immense educational effort so that the citizenry at large shall be able to discern the absurdities, nay the perils of the present, to discover the needs for the future and then rationally and unrancorously to permit the installation of governmental machinery that can not only meet these cherished objectives of the men of 1776 but will be also capable of producing justice in the relationships of man to man, man to State and man to God.
This Manifesto is a modest beginning and perhaps the task before us is not so arduous after all, for the “modest proposals” hereinafter outlined require for adoption acceptance of only a trinity of basics: recognition and implementation of that guiding principle of government, “restraint”; appointment of a receiver for a bankrupt agency of government; and, finally, the laying aside of prejudice. These basics, when adopted in accordance with this Manifesto, will require slight substantive changes in the mechanics of government and most governmental institutions will continue to function as they now do. Perhaps the single greatest impediment in the path of a Declaration of 1976 will be the usual unreasoning human prejudice against improvement in its sorry lot. But friends despair not, use the men of 1776 as models, for they who were also prisoners of their illusions, against greater odds than we, caused a reality therefrom.
If 1776 is an apogee of the Age of Reason, then 1976 is the nadir of the Age of Bankruptcy, for have we not recognition in all quarters of the near and actual bankruptcy of youth, morals, church, government — the list is endless. No doubt some of the institutions of society can be rehabilitated and a period in Chapter 11 under friendly controls might rescue the bankrupt; however, many are to such a degree insolvent that we creditors for our protection require Chapter 10 bankruptcy — without the delay of further debate. The most important institution in our society thus qualifying is the Presidency. The liquidation of which for the benefit of all taxpayers is required forthwith.
Need there be any debate regarding so obvious a conclusion? Consider the following: the office originally conceived as the executive and, in many ways the servant of the legislature, now has changed beyond belief into a corruption that stinks of the sweat of pretense. For it is not of a tyrannical power that we complain, since the power of the Presidency is in actual fact a small force for either good or evil (the character of its power best expressed in its command of Mafia call girls). Activities of recent presidents have been a litany of mischievous acts relieved only by the pardon of Nixon. Certainly, the proof certain of the weakness of the office is the inability of assorted charlatans, nincompoops and dedicatedly evil men to cause the actual demise of this chaotic combination of reason, unreason, prejudice, pseudo-capitalism, neo-fascism, social democracy and mongrel citizenry we call these United States. On the other hand, neither have genuine patriots who accidentally occupied the office been able to chart a course of civic virtue for the Ship of State.
Yet the childlike attitude of the citizenry towards the office (President Nixon perceptively and insultingly recognized the “childlike” attitude in a nation wide speech defending his actions in Vietnam) persists in elevating it to status far above its actual ability to exert power. The historical beach is strewn with shipwrecks of presidential initiatives which foundered because of the lack of actual power (not, in fact, available to any person or institution) to withstand such stormy seas generated by worldwide economic cycles or nationalistic surges of subject people.
Yet the myth of the office persists. The prize of office grows dearer and now comes, in this latest bicentennial year, the quadrennial madness of the presidential election. What reasonable man can contemplate this event with equanimity? For we slaves of the media now must submit to the incessant drivelings of idiot commentators as they report the activities of the adventurers and opportunists who call themselves candidates seeking this nullity of an office; and even worse, must pay some $100,000,000 before we have surcease; and for closers, observe the motley group of poseurs who would so aspire — and worse yet, if thou hath stomach — list to their nonsense. In fairness, it must be said that an occasional good man in the best sense of the word ill advisedly joins this group of intellectual (and actual) hooligans; however, he either quits quickly in disgust or recognizes the essential qualities of the rat-race and conforms. For in essence, the quest for the Presidency is a (rat or otherwise) race for a prize. Anything goes, the prize is all and immediately after the award of the prize, the engines of the office are forthwith trimmed and set to seek the prize again — regardless of the national interest; first, upon the office and the candidates and secondly, upon national and international imperatives confronting the commonweal. What citizen in sober reflection does but cast a ballot for despair?
Although the Presidency is such an easy target that it is tempting to carry on further, restraint, which will be a touchstone of the new constitution, is hereby invoked to end this diatribe. Accordingly, we will now proceed to consider the central concept of a new constitution.
In a recent speech to the English Speaking Union, Kingman Brewster, President of Yale university, identified “restraint” as the most essential characteristic to allow for the continued functioning of the English speaking democracies. In the exercise of self government, “restraint” invoked by custom or written constitution, both by the governed and the government, generated by self discipline and an appreciation of the limits of self interest, are required of the various constituencies of the body politic. The great twin failures of the Presidency as now constituted are that, powerless to deliver promised solutions to problems it cannot hope to solve, it confuses the body politic, thus causing the development and buildup of irresistible pressures that do not permit timely governmental restraints to be applied as needed.
The Presidency, existing now as the prize of adventurers, can never hope to function as an arbiter and restrainer between conflicting constituencies. The short term of office, the background and training of presidents ensures that, at best, incumbents will consider themselves as caretakers. Accordingly, there is seldom the will to resist those contemporary influences with the most money or the most votes or both — regardless of the ultimate interest of the commonweal.
What is needed then in place of the presidency is an office or institution that can be best defined as “restraintful” — that is, an office with the residual power to save the commonweal from its worst excesses. The present constitution, of course, provides in the Supreme Court an institution with some restraintful powers; however, the Court has no mandate to act as an institution of restraint, and because of long delay, the obfuscation of the legal process, the inability to determine common sense solutions, the restraintful secondary effects of its decision, falls short of being effective. Reliance on the Court has produced such obviously undesirable present decisions on frivolous matters such as pornography and equally undesirable decisions on serious matters such as busing. As a result of the actions of the Court, generations are often condemned to live with bad laws and worse philosophy — a regretful condition indeed and surely more regretful when, if only the restraints of common sense were applied, there need be no law or philosophy inconsistent with a disinterested assessment of the needs of the commonweal as considered by that “restraintful” office.
Surely then, when presented the evidence of the political irresponsibility of our times and the history leading to our present status, the time has arrived when citizens should consider the surrender of a small part of the presumed political rights to an office that despite the exigencies of the moment, the tyranny of the majority, the demagogic promises of the irresponsible, can impose a final veto of any political decision of the electorate, legislature, executive and judicial bodies of the political corpus. The United States of America needs to return to government by Monarchy!
While monarchical government appears to be completely contrary to the American tradition, it cannot be overlooked that in 1776, republican government was completely contrary to American and English tradition. A return to a monarchy now is a much less radical proposal than that of the Sons of Liberty in the 1770’s and a more rational action than that of the desperate Continental Congress in 1776.
The royalist government proposed shall, of course, be a constitutional monarchy with provisions limiting circumstances under which the monarch would be able to act. Except in clearly defined emergency situations, the monarch’s actions would be limited to veto powers. Monarchical succession is to be hereditary and the Monarch shall be endowed with all the ceremonial duties of the head of state. In addition to the political and ceremonial powers; the monarchy shall be given all right and title to the nation as a whole — all physical and spiritual properties including its citizens — and shall under a royal charter be charged by the citizenry at large through its legislature to be strictly accountable for both the fiscal and moral state of the nation.
Acting then under Royal Charter, the Monarch and his family would by restraint preserve their property and by these acts perform a service of inestimable value to the commonweal — for who now acts to preserve the physical and spiritual property of the nation with the zeal of proprietorship of an owner? It is not difficult to imagine the restraintful intervention of a monarch to avoid some of the worst excesses of the recent past — Vietnam, wasteful social legislation, irresponsible budgets, the CIA — each action a profligate wasting by caretakers and managers of the owner’s spiritual and physical capital. An alert and resourceful monarch with only the latent threat of veto may well have prevented the commission of these errors. In retrospect, of course, it appears that monarchical guidance would have avoided all of them.
But how shall we avoid tyranny or other aberrations of a constitutional monarchy? Firstly many properly constituted monarchies have ruled for centuries which length of sovereignty is testimony to responsible rule, able to retain the confidence, loyalty and the consent of the governed. There is good reason to believe that more rather than less political stability will flow from a monarchy rather than a republic. The American republic was unable to exist 100 years without indulging in a bloody and bitter civil war which in its ferocity has never been equalled under a monarchy. Secondly, in the case of a monarchical aberration or default, revolt is always available — peaceable or otherwise as endorsed by Mr. Jefferson: “The tree of liberty needs to be watered from time to time by the blood of patriots.” The perils to liberty are far greater from demagogically unrestrained big government than from monarchical hierarchies intent upon the enlightened preservation of its property.
Come then Americans; lay aside your prejudices, recognize the realities of politics and the supreme truth that political man acts most reasonably under firm recognizable restraints — that the time of the republic is past and that the perils of disunity can best be avoided by unity under a royal monarch!
Long live the King and/or Queen!
ADDENDUM NO. 1
On Selecting A Monarch
The essence of the monarchical spirit shall be proprietorship. The categorical imperatives of proprietorship, of which preservation is the chief, shall motivate monarchical acts. Accordingly, then, since the office does not allow for initiatives, an activist shall not be required for the exercise of office. This means the office is not that of a dictator or a potential dictator. By negation then, since most dictators arise from groups unused to the exercise of power for extended periods, it follows that our monarch is best chosen from a long established family with a record both of responsible proprietorship and of restraintful exercise of power.
The successful establishment of a monarchy will obviously depend in large part upon the selection of a proper individual to become the first sovereign; however, the importance of the proper individual shall not outweigh the need for the concurrent selection of the proper family. The monarchical qualities inherent in the family shall, for the continuing and future welfare of the nation, then outrank those of the individual. Accordingly, the selection of the individual shall be consonant with the selection of dynasty, for the establishment of the dynasty shall reinforce the sense of proprietorship so essential to monarchy.
The foregoing considerations lead to the conclusion that available qualified monarchs, except from existing royal or near royal families, are few indeed. Some American dynasties such as the Rockefellers might possibly qualify, except that a too-ready familiarity has already bred a too-general contempt, and lineage, in comparison with other candidates, is unacceptably brief. Further, a certain hauteur requisite to the office is probably impossible of development in a native family.
If an American is unacceptable, then perhaps foreign royal stock might be considered; however, there are considerable difficulties. For instance, among the Irish, except for the fat prelates of America, there is no royalty. The international aristocracy of Jews (such as the Rothschilds) hold some possibility except a plethora of dialect jokes would crush their pretensions. While an Italian monarchy might hold some possibility in maintaining the Mafia links with government as established by the Kennedys, it would not have the necessary eminence to overawe native Wahoos.
When all is considered, the best qualified and available dynasty is the House of Windsor/Hanover. Firstly, Windsor/Hanover holds a long tradition of governing America and when not actually governing, leading and controlling America by shining example and/or subtle diplomacy. Secondly, the misguided and eccentric British democracy, now in its final stages, has so diluted the influence of the monarchy that the dynasty must be looking and available. Thirdly, only monarchs with proper British sangfroid and, above all, accent would be able to overawe and win the allegiance of the great peasantry that is America.
Thus the wheel of history turns full cycle. The men of 1776 forswore allegiance to the House of Windsor/Hanover — we of 1976 now again proffer that allegiance.
ADDENDUM NO. 2
The Dialectic Of The Royal Charter And Constitutional Monarchy
Upon the publication of The Declaration of 1976, Congress shall under its present powers convoke a Constitutional Congress. The Constitutional Congress shall then create a Royal Charter defining the rights and obligations of the Monarch and the creation of a hierarchical meritocracy to support the Monarch; further, it shall concurrently amend the present Constitution to conform with the principles of the Declaration of 1976 and the Royal Charter.
The details of these activities shall be the subject of a dialogue between all constituencies of the Nation.
Others must now speak for. . . .
“Before Allah, only the Fool makes ready response. The Wise Man doth first ponderously pick his teeth.”
From “The Toothpick Society”