Happy Birthday Mr Jefferson

Today would have been the 275th birthday of Thomas Jefferson, the principal author of the US Declaration of Independence and the 3rd President of the United States.

The importance of his words in the Declaration of Independence, even today, should never be under-estimated:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.

Happy birthday Mr Jefferson.

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47 Responses to Happy Birthday Mr Jefferson

  1. God bless the United States constitution.

    We owe much to Jefferson.

  2. Terry

    When Australia talks about “changing the preamble” to our constitution, we could do worse than to “borrow” this:

    We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.

    …was worth repeating.

  3. duncanm

    ++

    smart Man, that Mr Jefferson.

  4. Pyrmonter

    Isolationist. Protectionist. Slave owner (and probably, sexual abuser). Fellow-traveller with the French Jacobins and then Boney. Anglophobe. Remind me why this man is well-regarded?

  5. ACTOldFart

    It’s well worth also reading his Presidential inaugural addresses. There are many thoughts in them about the role and limits of government with which, I am sure, Cats would firmly agree.

  6. stackja

    Pyrmonter
    #2685630, posted on April 13, 2018 at 10:24 am
    Isolationist. Protectionist. Slave owner (and probably, sexual abuser). Fellow-traveller with the French Jacobins and then Boney. Anglophobe. Remind me why this man is well-regarded?

    Man of his time. Judged by today’s ‘mores’ ? 1950s Australia mores changed by today’s ‘mores’?

  7. rickw

    As Fabio would say, the smartest men in history.

  8. Neil

    I think preaching rebellion against the powers that be is a dangerous concept. I think the Americans are lucky their revolution worked. After British authority left the Americans did a good job. But preaching revolution is dangerous

  9. RobK

    . But preaching revolution is dangerous
    Life is dangerous.

  10. Neil;

    But preaching revolution is dangerous

    Not preaching revolution when it is required is a damn sight more dangerous.

  11. Bruce

    “But preaching revolution is dangerous”.

    Doesn’t seem to discourage the never-ending parade of Stalinists, Maoists, Pol pot wannabes, etc. from vomiting forth endless words and deeds intended to invoke one here in this political cess-pit.

    On the other hand, there are a LOT of people who are seething internally at the “slings and arrows of outrageous government behaviour”, but who, thus far, feel constrained to merely giving token acknowledgement to the “democratic process”.

  12. Pyrmonter

    @ Stackja

    ‘Man of his times’.

    And so Lenin, Hitler, Stalin and Mao are excused their monstrosities because, after all, bourgeois liberalism went into eclipse after the Great War?

    Relativist nonsense.

  13. Dr Fred Lenin

    It’s good to see our polliemuppets are maintaining the high moral standards of truth ,honesty and devoted service to the people who elect them as the founding fathers . These high standards reach a pinnacle of excellence with the US decromats and Australian communist wing of the former liberal party ,no doubt they will receive their just reward one day , hopefully it is humane.

  14. Tom

    Today would have been the 275th birthday of Thomas Jefferson …

    Even better, today IS Thomas Jefferson’s birthday!

    Happy birthday, Mr President. Thank you for your God-given wisdom and knowledge of human nature.

  15. Up The Workers!

    To misquote “incoherent rambler” from 9.45am, above:

    God bless the United States Constitution and Thomas Jefferson.

    We owe much to the Chinese!

  16. mh

    Did he support small or big government?

  17. ACTOldFart

    Did he support small or big government?

    From the first inaugural:

    ” … what more is necessary to make us a happy and a prosperous people? Still one thing more, fellow-citizens — a wise and frugal Government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another, shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government, and this is necessary to close the circle of our felicities. “

  18. Leo G

    “… That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.”

    More logically, those powers are derived from the acquiescence of the misgoverned.

  19. Tom

    Did he support small or big government?

    There was no big government in the 18th and 19th centuries. Big government, and democracy’s end of days, did not arrive until the early 21st century, when the minority of tax-thieving parasites became the electoral majority after taking over the bureaucracy and the judiciary with the help of the Marxist media and academia and learnt how to award themselves the wealth of the tax-paying minority via the welfare state — as Alexis de Toqueville prophetically foresaw in the 19th century.

    If the people want democracy to deliver them from oppression, they’re going to have to fight for it all over again against the totalitarians who want to end it. Two world wars were not enough to guarantee democracy’s future.

    That is why the crowds attending Anzac Day are growing, not dwindling. The common people instinctively know what’s going on.

  20. C.L.

    There is no longer any “consent of the governed” anywhere in the Western world – and certainly not in the United States itself.

  21. Neil

    USA history is also not as clear cut as Americans would have us think. Who was Jefferson declaring independence on behalf of? And was their a vote taken?

    Apparently there were 26 British colonies in North America. 13 up and left. It was the war itself which defined the current borders. One by one they all turned against Britain until the final number of 13 was reached.

    Personally I do not like revolutionaries who stick their rifles at me and declare I have to do what they say. Just because the revolution worked does not mean it was right

  22. Fat Tony

    Neil
    #2685802, posted on April 13, 2018 at 1:21 pm
    USA history is also not as clear cut as Americans would have us think. Who was Jefferson declaring independence on behalf of? And was their a vote taken?

    Apparently there were 26 British colonies in North America. 13 up and left. It was the war itself which defined the current borders. One by one they all turned against Britain until the final number of 13 was reached.

    Personally I do not like revolutionaries who stick their rifles at me and declare I have to do what they say. Just because the revolution worked does not mean it was right

    Well, Neil, if you had a rifle and could point it back at them and tell them to nick off……oh, hang on, you don’t believe we should have guns, or rottweilers or sharp sticks or…..

  23. Neil

    oh, hang on, you don’t believe we should have guns, or rottweilers or sharp sticks or…..

    Not against guns in general just some types. Same goes for dogs. Rottweilers are fighting dogs. No problem if somebody wants to own a revolutionary war musket.

    Also I think the Americans are lucky their revolution worked. I heard someone say it was because they were fighting to get back what had been taken away rather than to create a new form of govt

  24. RobK

    We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.
    I think this is one of the most powerful things written and i fail to see how anyone, left or right leaning can have issue with it. They are beautiful words and meaning. I would stand and fight for its intent anytime should the need arise. All that, irrespective of values of the authors. I wish it was in our constitution.

  25. Fat Tony

    RobK
    #2685866, posted on April 13, 2018 at 2:44 pm

    I think this is one of the most powerful things written and i fail to see how anyone, left or right leaning can have issue with it. They are beautiful words and meaning. I would stand and fight for its intent anytime should the need arise. All that, irrespective of values of the authors. I wish it was in our constitution.

    We have a politicians’ constitution – they made sure they didn’t repeat the mistakes of the US constitution – you know, free speech, right to bear arms etc.

    Plus the bleating about “common law” rights – the ones that can be over-ruled by legislation….

  26. Fat Tony

    Neil
    #2685864, posted on April 13, 2018 at 2:43 pm
    oh, hang on, you don’t believe we should have guns, or rottweilers or sharp sticks or…..

    Not against guns in general just some types. Same goes for dogs. Rottweilers are fighting dogs. No problem if somebody wants to own a revolutionary war musket.

    Maybe, one day, when your family is being murdered in front of you, your chihauhau stomped into the carpet, your black powder wet from someone’s blood, you may realise where you were wrong.

    But it will be too late then.

  27. RobK

     you know, free speech, right to bear arms etc.
    I agree but to be fair, there were some ammendments.

  28. Tel

    Not against guns in general just some types. Same goes for dogs. Rottweilers are fighting dogs. No problem if somebody wants to own a revolutionary war musket.

    Given that you obviously don’t trust your fellow man, is there any reason anyone should trust your judgement? For that matter, when you move the goalpoasts (and of course you will, because we’ve all been here before) then what?

  29. The revolutionaries having won, decided what they would allow government to do.

    Whereas in AU, government decides what you are allowed to do and what government is allowed to do.

  30. H B Bear

    There is a fair bet that Jefferson wouldn’t even recognise modern government and welfare.

  31. Egor

    The low info left seem to think that a semi auto AR15 look alike is an “assault rifle”. Nah.

  32. Fat Tony

    Egor
    #2685926, posted on April 13, 2018 at 4:16 pm
    The low info left seem to think that a semi auto AR15 look alike is an “assault rifle”. Nah.

    Assault rifle definition: scary looking & black

  33. LBLoveday

    “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness”.
    I have never been able to reconcile those words with the fact that the prime author, Jefferson, owned around 600 human slaves, yet did not see, or chose to ignore, the obvious contradiction.
    “A man of his time” does not cut it for me – either he did not think that blacks were men, or the words were just superficial, no better than what spills from the mouths of Turnbull, Shorten and a plethora of others of the Left.

  34. md

    How long will it be before the commies tear down that monument?

  35. HB Bear;

    There is a fair bet that Jefferson wouldn’t even recognise modern government and welfare.

    He would, Humphrey.
    And he’d be horrified.
    But he wouldn’t recognise it as government.

  36. Dan Dare

    They may not be actual rifles but there are a lot of offensive items being pointed at me by those declaring what I have to do.
    Their revolution is working but that doesn’t mean it’s right.

  37. Neil

    Also a hundred years later the USA had a brutal civil war. I think the Revolutionary war led to the civil war. A peaceful break with Britain like we had would have lead to a different history.

    I don’t like armed revolutions. The Americans were lucky theirs worked

  38. Egor

    “No problem if somebody wants to own a revolutionary war musket.”

    And the 1st Amendment only applies to text printed on a Ben Franklin designed printing press.
    You recognise that you are an idiot now, don’t you son.

  39. Thank you, Egor.
    Saved me the trouble.

  40. Fat Tony

    Neil
    #2686132, posted on April 13, 2018 at 8:03 pm
    Also a hundred years later the USA had a brutal civil war. I think the Revolutionary war led to the civil war. A peaceful break with Britain like we had would have lead to a different history.

    I don’t like armed revolutions. The Americans were lucky theirs worked

    Yeah – they could be like us being invaded by moslems and taken over by the Chicoms with a Uniparty that we are unable to do anything about. Poor buggers.

  41. Zatara

    Jefferson’s association with slavery wasn’t as clear as some have implied here.

    The US was left to clean up the mess left behind by Britain’s enthusiastic employment of slave labor in it’s colonies (even after they were freed in Britain itself). Jefferson, having inherited slaves from both his father and his wife’s, also inherited their lands and their debts. Emancipating his slaves was thus problematic at the time, not to mention illegal. Reality often sucks, but it is still reality.

    In 1778, with Jefferson’s leadership, slave importation was banned in Virginia, one of the first jurisdictions worldwide to do so. Jefferson was a lifelong advocate of ending the trade and as president led the effort to criminalize the international slave trade that passed Congress and he signed in 1807, shortly before Britain passed a similar law.

    In 1779, as a practical solution to end slavery, Jefferson supported gradual emancipation, training, and colonization of African-American slaves rather than unconditional manumission, believing that releasing unprepared slaves with no place to go and no means to support themselves would only bring them misfortune.

    In 1784, Jefferson proposed federal legislation banning slavery in the New Territories of the North and South after 1800, which failed to pass Congress by one vote. In his Notes on the State of Virginia, published in 1785, Jefferson expressed the beliefs that slavery corrupted both masters and slaves alike, supported colonization of freed slaves, suspected that African-Americans were inferior in intelligence, and that emancipating large numbers of slaves made slave uprisings more likely.

    Given the constraints of the time and his situation, Jefferson actually did quite a bit to eliminate slavery and to repair the damages caused by the slave industry. He was quite forward thinking in his recommendations for positive resolution for both the slaves and their owners.

  42. André M.

    Speaking of all men being created equal…

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-04-13/optus-removes-online-job-ad-calling-for-anglo-saxon-staff/9653270

    Telecommunications giant Optus has launched an internal investigation after a job advertisement calling for white candidates at one of its Sydney stores was posted online.
    The ad for a casual retail consultant appeared on employment portal Seek on Thursday afternoon, and said people “who are Anglo Saxon” would be preferred.
    The company has since removed the ad, which was calling for workers at its Neutral Bay store.

    It wasn’t that long ago that Dennis Jensen MP alerted us to the existence of federally funded jobs for “liaison officers” in NT and Qld in which candidates for the position were required to be Aboriginal. Slightly more recently were the QUT students who found themselves on the wrong side of the door to the Aboriginal-only computer labs. Whenever the government implements racist policies year in and year out there is barely a batting of the collective eyelid. But a private sector telco goes wrongly choosy on ethnicity on one day and it is front page excoriation.

  43. squawkbox

    Isolationist. Protectionist. Slave owner (and probably, sexual abuser). Fellow-traveller with the French Jacobins and then Boney. Anglophobe. Remind me why this man is well-regarded?

    Oh, don’t hold back. He probably smoked and opposed gay marriage too.

  44. Neil

    Given that you obviously don’t trust your fellow man, is there any reason anyone should trust your judgement?

    Not really on topic but Britain and the USA has identical gun laws up to around 1920. After WW1 there was revolution in Ireland, Russia and the powers that be decided to do away with the right to bear arms. Legislation was suck through Parliament to do that. So u would also have to say U do not trust the judgement of the British Parliament. We had much loose gun laws than Britain post 1920 until recently

    Maybe, one day, when your family is being murdered in front of you, your chihauhau stomped into the carpet, your black powder wet from someone’s blood, you may realise where you were wrong.

    I really hate comments like that. U do not need a AK47 or Rottweiler to defend your family. Get a cattle dog or a rifle

  45. Neil

    Update.

    Walking home I got cornered by a pit bull and something that looked like a Rottweiler. I was terrified but they were very friendly. The owners had left the gate open. A car pulled up and saw how terrified I was and offered some help. The owners of the dogs came out and saved me

    People if U want to defend your family U do not need a nuclear device. If U want a dog get a cattle dog and if U want a gun get a rifle

  46. Egor

    Ok, given we’ve already established you as an idiot….
    “U do not need a AK47” AK47s have never been available in Australia. An AK47 is a Soviet designed full auto military weapon. The similar looking semi auto civilian AK variants available in the US are no different from a Remington 750 semi auto hunting rifle. The AK variants have a scary military pistol grip, so I understand your fright and concern.

  47. Neil

    Well it looks like I have been told that u need something like that 2 defend your family

    Back on topic, one hundred years later the Americans went through one of the most brutal civil wars in history.

    I like the USA. They United States gave me a job for 6 years when my own country didn’t. The USA is lucky their revolution worked

    PS Rottweilers and pit bulls should not be allowed to be owned by citizens

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