Jefferson - A Father of the Revolution and Proponent of Open Systems

Jefferson.jpgFor the vast but relatively brief time that humans have elected to engage, create, or submit to governments, whether they be religious institutions, monarchies, dictatorships, social regimes, republics or any other form or combination thereof, the basis upon which those in charge wielded their power is the control of information and the associated lack of understanding and education of their constituency. Be it building superior armies, affecting rumors or common thinking or submitting to and enabling commercial influence of the masses, those in charge, over time, tend to manipulate the masses to a view that benefits their control.

A significant and historical dimension of controlling the citizenry has been wielded through the control of information. Begining with the printing press, this mode of control started to diminish. In the past century information control has diminished increasingly as technology and education proliferate across the globe. More people have access to information than ever before, and therefore the means with which governments and institutions have to hide from information is diminishing greatly. However, this reality does not result in enhanced governance. In fact, it is resulting in more corruption and poorer governance and those in charge are increasingly attempting to seize what they can through this time of great change and flux. The battle is between the old and the new and what lies ahead is an opportunity- if people only seize it.

The foundation of a just governance of people is based on an enlightened people. Therefore, when the citizens of the world object to wrongs it is they who must take responsibility for those acts which reflect an unexamined and unchallenged government. While the grip of the revolution is seizing us all, failing to take on the responsibilities associated with the new paradigm will result in the possibility of more oppression and lost opportunity available through the revolution of change. A visionary, Jefferson opined years ago of the realities of humanity, governance and leadership. In the age of revolution his words carry more weight than every before and bare consideration in reflecting upon the opportunity for mankind.

"Some preparation seems necessary to qualify the body of a nation for self-government." -- Thomas Jefferson to Joseph Priestley, 1802. FE 8:179

"Reformation in government follows reformation in opinion." -- Thomas Jefferson to Richard Price, 1789. ME 7:366, Papers 15:138

"If Caesar had been as virtuous as he was daring and sagacious, what could he, even in the plenitude of his usurped power, have done to lead his fellow citizens into good government?... If their people indeed had been, like ourselves, enlightened, peaceable, and really free, the answer would be obvious. 'Restore independence to all your foreign conquests, relieve Italy from the government of the rabble of Rome, consult it as a nation entitled to self-government, and do its will.' But steeped in corruption, vice and venality, as the whole nation was,... what could even Cicero, Cato, Brutus have done, had it been referred to them to establish a good government for their country?... No government can continue good but under the control of the people; and their people were so demoralized and depraved as to be incapable of exercising a wholesome control. Their reformation then was to be taken up ab incunabulis. Their minds were to be informed by education what is right and what wrong; to be encouraged in habits of virtue and deterred from those of vice by the dread of punishments proportioned, indeed, but irremissible; in all cases, to follow truth as the only safe guide, and to eschew error, which bewilders us in one false consequence after another in endless succession. These are the inculcations necessary to render the people a sure basis for the structure of order and good government. But this would have been an operation of a generation or two at least, within which period would have succeeded many Neros and Commoduses, who would have quashed the whole process. I confess, then, I can neither see what Cicero, Cato and Brutus, united and uncontrolled could have devised to lead their people into good government, nor how this enigma can be solved." --Thomas Jefferson to John Adams, 1819. ME 15:233


"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with inherent and inalienable 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; that whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles, and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness." --Declaration of Independence as originally written by Thomas Jefferson, 1776. ME 1:29, Papers 1:315

Turn off the tube, read, write and seek to understand the revolution. You have a duty to human kind to learn, think and act.