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Cubans know the alternative to freedom

When I asked my five-year-old grandson what he knew about George Washington, all he could say was, “He owned slaves.” That’s how Washington is remembered today: slaves, bad teeth, and a face on the dollar bill. But he won the Revolutionary War by sheer force of character; the precedents he set as our first chief executive embodied the ideology of freedom and remain in effect today. Other great men of similar talents behaved quite differently. Napoleon began as first consul, then promoted himself to emperor. Simón Bolívar went from liberator to dictator. By contrast, Washington voluntarily and with much relief relinquished power and ended his days as a farmer at Mount Vernon. That was unusual, unlikely—and exceptional.

Martin Gurri on how he sees July 4th

9 comments to Cubans know the alternative to freedom

  • Steven R

    Napoleon famously said, “they wanted me to be another Washington.”

  • bobby b

    I always loved the little George Washington mini-bio inside this Newt Gingrich NRA speech:


    (Loved the entire speech, actually.)

  • Kirk

    Washington’s greatness, unlike most “great men”, lies not in what he did, but what he did not do.

    Which was to set himself up as a potentate. His officers would have certainly carried out his desires, if that was what he wanted. Especially after the Continental Congress reneged on their obligations to them. Washington, instead, did what few have had the moral rectitude to do, and flatly told them “No’, when they came to him wanting to overthrow the Congress.

    If he did nothing else, that qualifies him for the history books. The current set of asshole revisionists trying to tear down the reputation of the Founders is entirely of a piece with their childish Marxism. They worship a man who signally never did anything but pontificate and parasitize his betters.

  • Paul Marks.

    Good post – and good comments.

    George Washington’s commitment to limited time in office (de facto term limits) and to, at least in time of PEACE, sound money (gold and silver) was honoured by every President before Franklin Roosevelt. “FDR” was not satisfied with two terms – he had four terms (even being elected in 1944 – in spite of his brain no longer really working, the lying media covered it up), and Franklin Roosevelt, in time of PEACE (1933), stole the gold of all the people (well all the ordinary people) and violated all contracts – public and private, George III and Lord North would not have dreamed of acting in the despicable way that Franklin Roosevelt did in-time-of-peace.

    And the education system, including the private schools, hold up “FDR” as a hero.

    The greatest mistake of 19th century thinkers was to hold that a system of schools and universities would promote liberty – sadly, tragically, the opposite has proved to be the case. As early as the elections of 1936 it became clear that the people had been taught to worship the government – and to think that any problem was due to too little statism, not too much statism.

    Indeed even in the “Progressive Era” (the early 1900s) candidates of all parties competed to promise more statism – even William Howard Taft did, just rather less than the Socialist, Progressive and Democrat candidates in the election of 1912.

    George Washington would have been grimly disappointed, Thomas Jefferson would have written a finely worked essay showing how this faith in statism, and bankerism (which are joined at the hip), was misplaced – and John Adams would have exploded in rage against both the statism and the bankerism.

    And I suspect that Roger Sherman would not have been able to resist saying “I told you this would happen”.

  • Paul Marks.

    As for Cuba.

    American universities, and increasingly American schools, as well as the media (especially the entertainment media) are dominated by Marxism.

    Not the same Marxism that the Castro brothers and “Che” (the Argentine mercenary) forced on the people of Cuba – but the even more perverted Marxism of Hubert Marcuse and the modern “Critical Theory” Marxists.

    Even the Castro brothers and “Che” would not have followed the evil path of the modern American (and general Western) establishment – with their obsession with sexually mutilating children, and all the rest of it.

  • Ferox

    Che Guevara’s quote on blacks is enough to embarrass any lefty Che-worshipper into silence.

  • Kirk

    Che Guevara’s quote on blacks is enough to embarrass any lefty Che-worshipper into silence.

    Nope. Not as such. I knew a black guy who wore Che shirts, had his poster up, thought he was a great guy. I pointed out the cognitive dissonance he should have had, with quotes and sources.

    His reaction? “Well, I’m sure he was justified… Those were Cuban/African blacks… They weren’t smart enough to be Marxists…”

    This was a no-sh*t black Marxist, BTW. Today, he’d have been BLM. Che’s actual historically documented statements and actions did nothing at all to dissuade him from his belief system. Talking to him was kinda like talking to a fervent Jewish Nazi. Which, I am told, did actually exist… As counter-intuitive as that might seem. I suppose it’s similar to black slaveowners of the antebellum South… Stockholm Syndrome?

  • Fraser Orr

    I also don’t understand why people wear Che T Shirts either. Why? Because he was a revolutionary, I guess is the reason, or perhaps just spectacular ignorance. Besides his attitude to black people, what he did to homosexuals or even men who were not considered “manly” enough is enough to require the fainting couch and smelling salts for any gender studies major. And what did he achieve in Cuba? The place is a hellhole. If they love Cuba so much, the weather there is lovely, and I am sure Cuba would welcome any Americans who want to relocate. However, AFAIK, it is not widely considered a popular place to retire. For some reason old commies tend to retire in Florida instead under the “tyranny” of Ron Desantis.

  • Steven R

    You don’t normally see people trying to cross the Florida Straits southbound in an old pickup truck turned into a raft to get away from America.