Return to Common Sense

August 14, 2019

Section: Introduction - Philosophy

United States began with a fine Constitution and we now need to use our “Common Sense” to force our elected officials to return to its underlying principles that government serves the people, and not vice versa, to reinforce the exceptionalism that makes this country great!

When the people fear the government, there is tyranny; when the government fears the people, there is liberty.” Thomas Jefferson


Philosophy (Background, Issues, Objectives):

Declaration of Independence recorded our founding principles.

o   Among them are Life, individual Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.

Founders based Constitution on Judeo-Christian tenets.

Federal government was designed to serve the states.

Government was designed to serve the people.

Government was defined as a representative republic with three, equal, balanced branches.

Constitution established a federal government of limited powers, enumerated in Article I, section 8.

States rights are reaffirmed by 9th and 10th Amendments to the Constitution.

Revolutionary War era essays helped sell the ideas of the new republic.

American nationalism upholds the shared ideals of American citizens, including collective history, our unique Constitution, free-enterprise economic principles, and our great flag.

·         This philosophy is rooted in the belief that the United States thrives best when it primarily promotes our national interest, particularly as it relates to trade, borders, and foreign interventions.

·         American nationalism rejects the multilateralism that gained far too much sway over our sovereignty in recent decades. 

·         American nationalism is not retrograde, and does not believe in “America alone,” but does strongly assert “America First.” 



America, as defined by the Constitution is not a democracy.

Fundamental American Principles:

o   Individual freedom of action.

o   Right to think for yourself.

o   Trust in your own judgment.

o   Freedom and property are inextricably linked.

·         Equality – equal justice under law.

o   Judiciary interprets, not creates law

o   Strong families

·         Fraternity – serve the common good

o   Serve the majority, while respecting the minority

o   Encourage responsible behavior

·         Democratic – representative

o   Legislature was composed of citizen representatives (no professional politicians).

o   Limited government.

·         We live in a competitive world.

o   Freedom to pursue happiness; does not guarantee achievement of happiness.

o   Individuals are free to make life decisions; and live with their consequences.

o   Some people win; some people lose.

·         We believe in America’s exceptionalism.

o   Assume problems and mistakes are exceptions.

Principles of Constitutionalism

o   A “positive” view of rights is one where the government can compel the individual to do, or to provide for others.

o   Natural rights are incompatible with positive rights.

Ten Principles of Freedom:

The Idea of America:                   

·         Man is created with certain inalienable rights, including Life, Liberty, and Property.

·         Man has the right to self-government, the right to be left alone, the right to the fruit of his labors, the right to dispose of his property as he sees fit.

·         All men are created equal under God and the law, and that no man can take away these rights, and that the sole duty of government is to protect them.

·         The government must be accountable to The People, not the people to the government.

·         Ours is to be a nation of laws, not of men, and that no one is above the law.

·         Justice is blind, and man must be virtuous if he is to be free.

·         Human rights come from the creator and cannot be abrogated by men.

In 1918, Congress adopted the American's Creed.

Core rights and liberties are contained in the founding documents.

·         Never let the force of a majority take away the rights of an individual.

·         Establish no right that is not given to all equally or that obligates another citizen for anything more than non-interference.

·         Measure the success of government, not by how many services it provides, but by how many citizens are free and effective in meeting their own needs.

·         Never sacrifice tomorrow's liberties for today's temporary needs for security.

·         Protect the property rights of citizens to enjoy and control the fruits of their own labor and investments.

·         Refuse to expend the money of constituents for benevolence best done by individual charities or local governments.

·         Promote and preserve a sound, free-enterprise economy and protect economic freedoms--the freedom to work, the freedom to enjoy the rewards one earns, the freedom to own and control one's property, and the freedom to participate in a free market.

·         Protect the right of individual self-defense, the spirit of resistance in defense of liberty, and the right to bear arms.

·         Protect "we the people" from the abuse of government by creating checks and balances between branches that prevent hasty change, unnecessary regulations, or government tyranny.

·         Ensure and promote the free expression of religion without ever establishing any state religion or denomination.

·         Ensure freedom of speech that allows people to criticize their government, express unpopular opinions, or even express offensive comments without fear of government reprisal or criminal persecution.

·         Establish, fund and maintain a vibrant and effective military force appropriate for the time and the threat that preserves the security of our country.

·         Finally, ensure that all citizens, from the poorest to the richest, will equally pay their fair share of the cost of maintaining our Constitutional Republic - freedom isn't free.

Heritage Foundation unchanging conservative True North principles:

Getting America Right defines six simple questions to consider before supporting any policy:

Government Minimalist Guidelines:

·         The need for government in a society varies inversely to the sophistication and affluence of its people.

·         Government is a high-cost ay of doing anything.

·         The less government does, the better off we are.

·         Government cannot spend its way out of the economic hole dug by taxes.

·         Since we need so little and the cost is so high, why do we have so much government?

·         How to make and keep government small?

o   Tell the voters the truth about the high cost of taxes weighed against the often low benefit of spending.

o   Force Congress to adhere to a cost-benefit budget procedure, conducted in the open with full public notice and voter participation.

o   Give everyone a “tax dividend” when spending reduction targets are met and send the bill for additional taxes when spending goes up.

Americanism is freedom founded on the power of the individual, and his ability to achieve without undue government interference.

Reasons to be grateful and proud to live in the United States.

The Seven Reasons America Became a Great Power



Limit size and intrusion of federal government to less than 20% of GDP.

·         Ensure general welfare clause is not interpreted as an enumerated power to expand government.

Enact the Enumerated Powers Act to link all legislation to appropriate constitutional authority.

·         Require each Act of Congress contain a concise and definite statement of the constitutional authority relied upon for the enactment of each portion of that Act.

Hold Congress responsible for their words and actions.

Champion those who serve the country honorably and make a real difference.



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