Why the Founding Fathers would not like the Tea Party: A Teachable Moment by Bill Maher
By: Jim Byrd
Bill Maher, one of myriad commissioned nincompoop delegates of the Left, and a poor man’s Maxine Waters, expressed the plenary sentiments of the Left last week regarding the Left’s theoretical relationship between the Founding Fathers and the constitutionally inclined Tea Party: â€œNow I want you Teabaggers out there to understand one thing. While you idolize the Founding Fathers and dress up like them and smell like them, I think itâ€™s pretty clear that the Founding Fathers would have hated your guts, and whatâ€™s more you would have hated them. Now that theyâ€™ve finished reading the Constitution out loud, the Teabaggers must call out that group of elitist liberals whose values are so antithetical to theirs.”
Expectantly, no comment from the Left would be complete without a debased pejorative hurled at those of a different ideology to manifest their ethos.
Before directly addressing Maher’s attestation of manifold ignorance, one fact is inarguable: the Founding Fathers were intellectual elites. The existent self-anointed â€œintellectual elitesâ€–a term that has unfortunately become synonymous with â€œliberal elitesâ€–regarding their qualifications as either being intellectual or elite, is logically unsound, as the preponderance of evidence to support either claim is judiciously bereft. The principal luminaries of the Founders of this country were transcendent of their intelligence by virtue of classical education, and to amplify this ascendancy, they possessed wisdom–which cannot be taught by a university–and were of virtuous character. Comparing the contemporary self-anointed intellectual elite vis a vis the intellectual elite of the Founder’s era will be an exercise of comical contrast. The intellectual elites of the past century have operated within a murky penumbra of assumption that an Ivy League degree, intelligence, education, and a liberal ideology are mutually inclusive. This century old affliction, this disease that the contemporary intellectual elite suffer to varying degrees, which causes them to exponentially elevate their intellectual appraisal, is Grandiose Delusional Disorder. This affliction is pandemic as witnessed in the 2008 presidential and congressional election.
For the sake of brevity, the argument of contrasting the disparities of the intellectual elites of the founding era and the current spurious syndicate will be restricted primarily to Thomas Jefferson and Barack Obama. Both were presidents of the United States; both attended Ivy League schools, one public Ivy and the other private Ivy, respectively. This comparison, though true in a factual and academic sense, must be adorned with an asterisk for qualification.
During the mid 18th century, long before the government began invalidating education via bureaucratic cataclysms, to qualify for higher education was a simple enterprise: one had to be intelligent, learned, academically accomplished, and prepared. A sampling of the Founders’ education: Thomas Jefferson attended William & Mary; John Adams, Samuel Adams, and John Hancock attended Harvard; John Jay and Alexander Hamilton attended Columbia; and James Madison attended Princeton. And to further limit higher education to those cerebrally qualified, affirmative action did not exist, standardized testing did not exist, SAT scores did not exist, curriculums focused on ideology did not exist, test scores did not exist, the emphasis on diplomas rather than education did not exist, and the dysfunctional mania for forced diversity at the expense of excluding better qualified students did not exist. What did qualify one for higher education were genuine intelligence, preparation, legitimate preparatory education, mastery of Latin and Greek, and the willingness to follow a Christian lifestyle while being educated. An archetypical example of the qualifications for Harvard College in 1642:
Founding Of Harvard College, America, 1642, Vol. 2, Pg. 155-157
1. When any scholar is able to understand Tully, or such like classical Latin author extempore, and make and speak true Latin in verse and prose, And decline perfectly the paradigms of nouns and verbs in the Greek tongue: Let him then and not before be capable of admission into the college.
2. Let every student be plainly instructed, and earnestly pressed to consider well, the main end of his life and studies is, to know God and Jesus Christ which is eternal life, John 17:3, and therefore to lay Christ in the bottom, as the only foundation of all sound knowledge and learning.
Though eight original rules were observed by Harvard, the first two are more than sufficient to eliminate the faintest possibility of our current intellectual elite from having attended Harvard during this era. Thomas Jefferson possessed a better education at 16 than did Barack Obama the day he graduated from Harvard.
Who qualifies as an intellectual elite today? First and foremost, and before any other criterion is measured, one must be liberal, progressive, and a product of the Left. An Ivy League diploma is essential. It is preferable that one be published–especially advocating a Leftist ideology. It is essential to employee the ability to philosophize and articulate nugatory topics that the sophist has never cultivated from functional experience or accomplishment. This articulation must be presented by the utmost magniloquent and grandiose elocution to cloak its destitute substance.
To the truly learned, the term “intellectual elite” is pejorative. But to the unenlightened proletariats who subscribe to the intellectual elitesâ€™ ideology at face value, the intellectual elite are omniscient despite their self-anointed stature. They possess superior intellect by virtue of educational degrees and sterile philosophical scholarship as opposed to practical experience and circumstantiated accomplishments in fields of benefit to society. The most ponderous aspect regarding the intellectual elite is their concocted and poppycock discourse employed to mesmerize their acolytes and bewilder opponents. They do have their own language, especially at the professorial level, which can transform the intellectually malleable student into a capricious and volatile state of cognitive confusion and stability. The words, the phrases, the sentence structures are something to behold, quite intimidating, and are designed for one purpose: to promote and present as fact and truth the baseless assertions, unsubstantiated results, failed theorems, and historically bankrupt ideology of the Left. But upon further autopsy, and when the pompous and flatulent diction are severed from the bereft narrative, there is generally insufficient sustenance to nourish a thought.
The primary breeding grounds for such pompous hyperbole are Ivy League universities and various elite and highly competitive public and private universities that could be classified as Public Ivy universities. Devout liberalism is expected with the same fervency at these institutions of learning as devout Christianity was, at these same universities, 250 years ago. To sustain their liberal worldview prejudice, especially in law, Ivy League institutions maintain a safe percentage of approximately 80% of professors with a liberal leaning bias. The tenured professor, the virtually untouchable scholar, will need to publish some ridiculously preposterous argument about some purposeless and frivolous topic. The impressionable fledgling student, if not properly indoctrinated in his formative years, will generally be presented with two choices: relent, and become indoctrinated by adopting this absurdly amusing diction, or resist, and question the professors’ views pertaining to substantiated facts and history, suffering varying academic consequences. This Oedipal relationship cycle is continuously regenerating, and as with continual inbreeding, congenital and genetic intellectual defects have become problematic within the halls of academia.
David Horowitz summarized the typical disposition of a college regarding diversity of thought and ideology: “Ideas that oppose left-wing orthodoxy â€” opposition to racial preferences, belief in innate differences between men and women, or, more recently, support for Americaâ€™s war in Iraq â€” are regarded as morally unacceptable or simply indecent. The proponents of such ideas are regarded as deviants from the academic norm, to be marginalized and shunned.â€™â€™
This is what passes as the intellectual elite of today when contrasted to the intellectual elites of 250 years ago: masters of nothing of value outside academia, experts of nothing of value outside academia, accomplishments of nothing of value outside academia.
Thomas Jefferson started his classical education at a very early age, tutored by William Douglas, a Scottish Reverend. Jefferson learned French under Douglas’ tutelage, but with a twist: he learned to speak French with a Scottish accent. Jefferson then enrolled in the Classical School for Boys operated by James Maury, a minister. Jefferson lived with the Maury family while attending the school. Maury began teaching Jefferson Latin, Greek, and French at the age of nine. Jefferson’s classical education began while Obama and current intellectual elites were learning rudimentary grammar such as what a noun and verb are in their native tongue, English.
Jefferson entered the College of William & Mary in 1760 and graduated in 1762, with the highest of honors. Before entering the college, he could read Greek and Latin, as was expected before entering the school. He studied under Professor William Small, a professor of natural philosophy (physics, metaphysics, and mathematics), and moral philosophy (rhetoric, logic, and ethics). Jefferson studied, practiced his violin, and was never without his Greek grammar book 15 hours a day. In 1772, Jefferson was asked by the College of William & Mary, at the age of 18, to design an addition to the College.
A quick contrast between Jefferson’s 15 hour days filled with education, and how Obama filled his days during his formative educational years: In his book, Dreams From My Father, Obama stated that he used marijuana and cocaine, and the only reason he did not try heroin was because he did not like the dealer. His reasoning: “It was reflective of the struggles and confusion of a teenage boy. Teenage boys are frequently confused.”
After graduating in 1762 with the highest of honors, Jefferson studied law with the distinguished jurist George Wythe for five years. Wythe became the first professor of law at William & Mary, and this country’s first law professor.
The intellectual elite of the founding era were taught how to think. They were prepared to become leaders of men, leaders of countries, and if elected, statesmen. Those who pass today as intellectual elite, especially in politics, are followers of ideology, trends, and polling numbers. They have mastered the art of following, in contrast to 250 years ago, when an education taught a student how to think–which is a fundamental qualification of a leader.
What does one accomplish when education is the goal of attending college rather than social experience, protesting wars, protesting tuition costs, shouting down guest speakers with opposing views, organizing to organize, and protesting to protest? Here is what Jefferson accomplished: He could speak five languages, he was a horticulturist, philosopher, author, musician, scientist, architect, inventor, agronomist, lawyer, archaeologist, and a statesman. Barack Obama, the President of the United States, has never practiced law of any relevance, and his election to public office is an accomplishment of little to no value. So, what has this contemporary intellectual elite accomplished when contrasted with Thomas Jefferson and the founders of this country? What accreditation does Obama possess that grants him the right to wield his antithetical disposition to this country’s Constitution, this country’s founding document, conceived, written, sacrificed, and fought for by men of far superior education, intellect, and character?
This is not an indictment on the entirety of graduates of Ivy League and elite universities as prostrate thinkers, nor a characterization of all professors as unrelenting ideologues; there is a wealth of intelligent representatives from the Left and the Right in and out of academia. But there does exist a remarkable chasm in the quality of education provided today, and the requirement to enter a college when compared to the founding era. But most important is what is expected of the student once enrolled. What segregated Jefferson, Madison, Adams, et al. from their contemporaries was their incessant drive to pursue education far beyond expectations. With just a perfunctory study of Jefferson’s life and education, it is inarguable that Jefferson’s deep wealth of knowledge was derived from his autodidact pursuits. All people, all students, have at their disposal this same method of education if they so desire, and the ability to greatly transform themselves into highly educated people.
Bill Maher is partially correct in one regard: the Founding Fathers would not have hated the Tea Party, but certainly would have cast the entire lot as loony as Alexander Hamilton’s original idea of how to structure the government. It was Hamilton’s idea of elective monarchs and no term limits, and his declaration that British government was “the best in the world” that caused him to not be able to attend the Constitutional Convention for its entirety, as would have been the case with the Tea Party. The Tea Party, with their desire to follow the constitution, would still be too far to the left of the founders to have been taken seriously. Even Ron Paul, one of the more “radical” of the right, would have been far too much to the left to have been taken seriously, just as he is now considered too far to the right to be taken seriously. This is not a slight to the Tea Party or Ron Paul; the original position of our government on the political spectrum has been poisoned and shifted so far to the left that what would have been considered left of the foundersâ€™ ideas is now considered radically to the right. This is the product of a contemptible education system and its perpetuation of inaccurate and blatant manipulation of history.
What the Founders gave us was a very specifically designed Republic, but what Democrats, Republicans, Tea Party, and almost all politicians fail to grasp, is its simplicity and its being the most perfectly formed government possible by human creation: a government that resided in the very center of the political spectrum, just enough government to get the job done, not too much, not too little.
After suffering through the vile rhetoric from the Left regarding the Tea Party’s platform of adhering to the Constitution, the question must be asked of Maher and the Left: it is not a question of why the Founding Fathers would have hated the Tea Party, but why do the Left and the Democratic Party hate the Founding Fathers and their Constitution?
Jim Byrd's website is A Skewed View.