EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

February 6, 2013

Letter: If you want positive change, put country first

The Eagle-Tribune

---- — To the editor:

The Declaration of Independence avers that “governments are instituted among men and derive their just powers from the consent of the governed.” The preamble of the United States Constitution states, “We the People … establish this Constitution for the United States of America.” Amendment V declares, “No person shall … be deprived of life, liberty or property, without due process of law.” What’s in the Patriot Act?

Amendment IX asserts, “The enumeration in the Constitution of certain rights shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.” Do we have a right to prevent our tax dollars from being given to banks that are “too big to fail?” Empires fail. Our federal government failed us yesterday, is failing us today and, apparently, will continue to fail us tomorrow.

In Federalist Paper I, Alexander Hamilton states, “… nothing could be more ill-judged than that intolerant spirit which has at all times characterized political parties.” Welcome to gridlock, where the influence of special interests rules the day to the detriment of the general welfare of the country, which for all intents and purposes has bankrupted our country, morally, fiscally and economically.

Many people are at a loss to understand how our federal government became so ineffective. To find the answer, we must collectively look in the mirror. The answer will be staring us in the face.

There are no local, state and federal lands, buildings or funds. It all belongs to the citizenry. All bureaucrats, public servants, government contractors and politicians work for us. In a democracy of, by and for the people, power rightfully flows from the bottom up not from the top down; however, a lack of vigilance and concern has led to the sad state of affairs in which our country is now stuck.

Democrats, Republicans, independents and progressives have the same needs and wants, e.g., adequate health care, good-paying jobs, secure retirements, first-rate education for their children, secure borders and capable, national security – economic and military. In New Hampshire and the country at large, I suggest that all citizens, regardless of party, stop casting insults at the beliefs and politicians of other parties. Tit-for-tat comments are ineffectual and polarizing. Republicans, Democrats, independents and progressives are all good Americans with ideas worthy of discussion. No one is always right or always wrong. Truth that has the power to result in positive change is an assortment of ideas.

Let people of all political groups assemble together with the goal of determining where we are now, where we want to be and the way to get there. Country first! Let us continue our discussions in this newspaper and in our meeting halls. How do we bring about positive change concerning transportation, oil consumption, protracted wars, the cost of elections, the lack of jobs and so forth? If government is ineffective, responsibility drops to us to find solutions to our pressing needs. Then, we will tell our representatives what we want and how they are going to fulfill our desires, since they work for and represent us. Failure on their part, at any level, is cause for dismissal.

Harlan Cheney