Skip to comments.What If There Were No America?
Posted on 06/29/2003 5:25:25 PM PDT by RJCogburn
On July 4th we celebrate the establishment by our Founding Fathers of the United States of America. Since 1776 America has become the freest, richest country that the world has ever known. One way to appreciate just what a blessing this country is to each of us is to reflect upon what the world would be like if America had lost the Revolution, if there were no America.
What if armed minutemen had not fought so valiantly at Lexington, Concord and Bunker Hill? What if Washingtons volunteers had been summer soldiers and sunshine patriots who could not endure the bitter winter at Valley Forge? What if Jefferson had never penned the Declaration of Independence, or if his words had been lost in the face of a British victory?
The key to America is the idea of liberty articulated in the Declaration, that all men are created equal and endowed with certain unalienable 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.
Without that ringing affirmation of individualism, perhaps many of the colonists -- in moral confusion -- would not have fought for their freedom. Without Jeffersons crystallizing words the colonists might not have seen the future of opportunity that a victory would bring.
Without an American victory the political map of the world would have been sadly different. Perhaps the colonists in British America would have remained a few million confined to the eastern seaboard, with French, Spanish and Russian colonies occupying the rest of the continent. Without America, the subjects of the Great Powers of Europe might have wasted their time, energy and blood fighting in the New World the types of wars that plagued the Old World.
But instead, in the two centuries and two score years of its history, the United States expanded from the Atlantic to the Pacific, and three million colonists became 280 million proud citizens who constructed homes and towns; planted crops; raised cattle; mined gold, silver and copper; established trading posts and ports; and built railroads, steel mills, factories and great, gleaming cities.
Without America, there would be no global economic giant with fruitful farms to feed itself and the rest of the world; no Thomas Edison or General Electric to light our homes and cities; no Ford and General Motors to mass-produce cars to make every American mobile; no Wright brothers or Boeing to fill the skies with planes to carry hundreds of millions of travelers to the far corners of the country and the world; no Samuel Morse, Alexander Graham Bell, Microsoft or Apple Computer to make instantaneous communications possible.
Americas economic success reflected its deeper, spiritual contribution to the rest of the world. Its philosophy of freedom and example of prosperity taught all individuals that they should expect nothing less than the personal autonomy to live their lives as they see fit and to pursue their personal dreams and material well-being without apology, with government to protect their freedom and to treat them with dignity rather than rule them like subjects.
Without America there would be no spirit of hope and optimism that contrasts with the pessimism and cynicism that besets even developed countries today. Without America there would have been no shining city on a hill, no land of opportunity to attract millions of immigrants -- individuals who were poor in wealth but rich in a desire to work hard and take risks to make the best of their lives. Without America there would have been no place to which those suffering political and religious persecution could flee. Rather than being free in America such individuals would have remained impoverished, frustrated and oppressed in their own lands.
Perhaps they would have tried to make revolutions in their own countries. But without Americas inspirational example, fighters for freedom might have faltered from the knowledge that the one attempt to establish a regime that recognized individual rights had failed. There would have been no Statue of Liberty welcoming to America all those who yearned to be free and stirring freedom-loving Chinese students to erect a similar sculpture in Tiananmen Square to declare their opposition to communist tyranny. Without America there would have been no military giant and arsenal of freedom to stand against the totalitarian regimes of the past century.
But fortunately, what was the dream of every moral and rational man and woman throughout history -- a land in which they could live their lives in liberty -- was established on Earth in the United States. Fortunately, each of us can strengthen and renew that land each day when we as individuals make the most of that blessed freedom and respect the equal freedom of others. Fortunately, there is an America.
Copyright, The Objectivist Center. For more information, please visit www.ObjectivistCenter.org.
The world would be a cross between this . . .and this. . .
Easy. Then the liberals will be happy.
Keep the floodtide of illegals coming in and keep offshoring every job that pays above minimum wage, and there won't be.
That's right. Al Gore wouldn't be around to have invented the internet and by extension Internet Porn.
If you look at some of the patterns established by the later colonies, think of vast nobility and rigid class systems. England in the 19th century was (and is still influenced by) controlled by the aristocracy and the American colonies were looked upon as excellent sources of estates and land wealth. The later American Colonies were Royal Colonies that could easily become the source of wealth for younger sons.
Without the loss of America, Lord North could have stayed in power during the Madness of George 3rd. Would the French Revolution, lacking the catastrophic costs of supporting the Anerican Rebels, have occurred at all? Louis XIV much preferred comfort to action and without the American War, taxes would probably have remained tolerable for years to come.
Yet, I'm of the opinion that the events had a momentum of their very own. The popular revolts of the 100 years from the 1760s on were the death knells of the aristocratic and religious dominations that could no longer remain static in the dynamic expansion of the Europeans into the larger world. From the American Revolution through to the citizen revolts throughourt Europe in 1848 to the American Civil War, the aristocratic dominion derived from feudalism fell back from the strengthening individualism. Eventually, of course, this pendulum swing transferred tyranny from blooded aristocracy to even bloodier dictatorship by those who spoke for the lumpen proletariat.
I'm somewhat uncertain about the probability of Napoleon and his empire without an American Revolution. As I explain in #13, without the bankruptcy deriving from French support of the American Revolution, the French Revolution could have happened much later, if at all.
Lacking that, would Nappy have been more than a great general? I see him more as the last of the great mercenary generals in Italy and perhaps India. As a Corsican and without the upset of the French Revolution, his path in France's military would likely have been limited!
Look at the world from Kashmir to Algeria, mad jihadists on an endless murder rampage. Oh, they're murdering mostly Muslims.
And honestly, wouldn't the Royal American Mounted Police be better than the FBI?
"What you have inherited from your fathers, earn over again for yourselves or it will not be yours."
We inherited freedom. We seem unaware that freedom has to be remade and re-earned in each generation of man.