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Why Appeal to Heaven?

The old question will be asked in this matter of prerogative, But who shall be judge when this power is made a right use of? I answer: between an executive power in being, with such a prerogative, and a legislative that depends upon his will for their convening, there can be no judge on earth; as there can be none between the legislative and the people, should either the executive, or the legislative, when they have got the power in their hands, design, or go about to enslave or destroy them. The people have no other remedy in this, as in all other cases where they have no judge on earth, but to appeal to heaven: for the rulers, in such attempts, exercising a power the people never put into their hands, (who can never be supposed to consent that any body should rule over them for their harm) do that which they have not a right to do. And where the body of the people, or any single man, is deprived of their right, or is under the exercise of a power without right, and have no appeal on earth, then they have a liberty to appeal to heaven, whenever they judge the cause of sufficient moment. And therefore, though the people cannot be judge, so as to have, by the constitution of that society, any superior power, to determine and give effective sentence in the case; yet they have, by a law antecedent and paramount to all positive laws of men, reserved that ultimate determination to themselves which belongs to all mankind, where there lies no appeal on earth, viz. to judge, whether they have just cause to make their appeal to heaven. And this judgment they cannot part with, it being out of a man’s power so to submit himself to another, as to give him a liberty to destroy him; God and nature never allowing a man so to abandon himself, as to neglect his own preservation: and since he cannot take away his own life, neither can he give another power to take it. Nor let any one think, this lays a perpetual foundation for disorder; for this operates not, till the inconveniency is so great, that the majority feel it, and are weary of it, and find a necessity to have it amended. But this the executive power, or wise princes, never need come in the danger of: and it is the thing, of all others, they have most need to avoid, as of all others the most perilous.

– John Locke, Second Treatise of Civil Government – Sec. 168

The Eastern White Pine tree has been referred to as “the monarch of the forest.” Some that greeted the first settlers reached a height of 250 feet with diameters of 6 feet. They were a bonanza for England in colonial times, as they met a vital military and commercial need for sailing ship masts. Since the colonists were rapidly using up the existing supply of trees close to the ocean that were large enough for masts, the Royal Navy appealed to Parliament. As a result, in 1691 Great Britain imposed the first of the so-called “broad arrow” acts, so named because of the axe mark placed on the reserved trees by the king’s men, that reserved these trees for the English government. Growing resentment to the crown’s appropriation of the choicest White Pines helped precipitate the Revolutionary War, and the first flag of the revolutionary forces even had a White Pine as its emblem. –Arborday.org

washcru

The Pine Tree Flag was one of the flags used during the American Revolution. The flag, featuring a pine tree flag with the motto “An Appeal to God,” or, more usually, “An Appeal to Heaven.” was used originally by a squadron of six cruisers commissioned under George Washington’s authority as commander in chief of the Continental Army in October 1775. It was also used by Massachusetts’ state navy vessels in addition to privateers sailing from Massachusetts.

The Massachusetts General Court established the flag of the state navy on July 26, 1776: “that the Colours be a white Flagg, with a green Pine Tree, and an Inscription, “Appeal to Heaven.'”

wikipedia

About this Blog: This is not a blog about politics…

How’s that, eh?

When it comes down to it, what issues are really worth writing about? I’m would agree that discussing the news of the day, certainly has it’s purpose. However, when topics turn to politics (especially in the blogosphere), I have noticed a trend. People from either side of the political spectrum tend to write and talk in a manner that is best described as ‘insider baseball.’ Basically, most political writers argue under the assumption that you (the reader) already understand their fundamental philosophy or worldview. For most people, I don’t believe this is actually the case. In fact, I think that this assumption usually drives people away from political discussions. (By the way, I am totally guilty of this, and I apologize to anyone I have brow-beaten in the past with this assumption)

Ultimately, with that approach you end up with this:
internet_argument

…or something similar.

Appeal to Heaven is an attempt to take a different tack. Our goal with this blog is to provide you, whatever your political leanings, with a resource for understanding a conservative (Liberty focused) world view. (In my (Adc) experience, conservative ideas are often self-evident to the point of seeming too obvious. However – they are often rejected in pursuit of noble, though emotionally driven and unrealistic ‘nice’ sounding ideas.) The point of this blog is not, again –IS NOT- to make you agree. Neither is this blog an attempt to paint anyone who thinks differently as bad, stupid, or evil. There are plenty of places you can go if you want someone’s point of view bashed in your face. This won’t be that place.

In fact, this is the purpose of the comment area. If you share a different view, and at any point feel that your view is being misrepresented, or if our rhetoric becomes too harsh or in-your-face, let us know immediately! After all – Appeal to Heaven is an attempt to combat this very thing: the misrepresentation of Conservative/Libertarian views by others.

Finally, you might be thinking – “Dude…barf, why care so much about politics? Isn’t there more to life?”

Yes – there is more. However, I (Adc) believe that a proper understanding of Man is vital to understanding much of life. Frederick Bastiat summed up Man eloquently:

We hold from God the gift which includes all others. This gift is life — physical, intellectual, and moral life.

But life cannot maintain itself alone. The Creator of life has entrusted us with the responsibility of preserving, developing, and perfecting it. In order that we may accomplish this, He has provided us with a collection of marvelous faculties. And He has put us in the midst of a variety of natural resources. By the application of our faculties to these natural resources we convert them into products, and use them. This process is necessary in order that life may run its appointed course.

Life, faculties, production — in other words, individuality, liberty, property — this is man.

The Law, Frederick Bastiat

This blog is not about which political party you should support, or who you should and should not vote for, or who’s the most patriotic… Can all of that.

At the end of the day, this blog is really about the philosophy of Liberty. This is a topic dear to us, that I feel most Americans (and perhaps people in general who have grown up in a free society) take somewhat for granted. Freedom is a precious gift that does not perpetuate itself naturally without effort. As Samuel Adams said:

The liberties of our country, the freedom of our civil Constitution, are worth defending at all hazards; and it is our duty to defend them against all attacks. We have received them as a fair inheritance from our worthy ancestors: they purchased them for us with toil and danger and expense of treasure and blood, and transmitted them to us with care and diligence. It will bring an everlasting mark of infamy on the present generation, enlightened as it is, if we should suffer them to be wrested from us by violence without a struggle, or to be cheated out of them by the artifices of false and designing men.

This, for me, is what is truly at the heart of conservatism – the preservation and defense of Liberty. And, I would venture to assert that this is truly at the heart of most Americans – whether they consider themselves conservative, liberal, or anything else. The problem, in my view, is that most people have not had a real opportunity to hear the philosophical arguments backing traditional conservative principals.

That is the goal of this site.

Best Regards to you, the reader,

-Adc

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