Detail, east Portland photo, courtesy Miles Hochstein / Portland Ground.

For old times' sake
The bojack bumper sticker -- only $1.50!

To order, click here.

Excellent tunes -- free! And on your browser right now. Just click on Radio Bojack!

E-mail us here.


This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on July 4, 2007 8:38 AM. The previous post in this blog was Bar bar bar, bar bar review. The next post in this blog is Greetings, WW readers. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.



Law and Taxation
How Appealing
TaxProf Blog
Mauled Again
Tax Appellate Blog
A Taxing Matter
Josh Marquis
Native America, Discovered and Conquered
The Yin Blog
Ernie the Attorney
Above the Law
The Volokh Conspiracy
Going Concern
Bag and Baggage
Wealth Strategies Journal
Jim Hamilton's World of Securities Regulation
World of Work
The Faculty Lounge
Lowering the Bar
OrCon Law

Hap'nin' Guys
Tony Pierce
Parkway Rest Stop
Along the Gradyent
Dwight Jaynes
Bob Borden
Dingleberry Gazette
The Red Electric
Iced Borscht
Jeremy Blachman
Dean's Rhetorical Flourish
Straight White Guy
As Time Goes By
Dave Wagner
Jeff Selis
Alas, a Blog
Scott Hendison
The View Through the Windshield
Appliance Blog
The Bleat

Hap'nin' Gals
My Whim is Law
Lelo in Nopo
Attorney at Large
Linda Kruschke
The Non-Consumer Advocate
10 Steps to Finding Your Happy Place
A Pig of Success
Attorney at Large
Margaret and Helen
Kimberlee Jaynes
Cornelia Seigneur
And Sew It Goes
Mile 73
Rainy Day Thoughts
That Black Girl
Posie Gets Cozy
Cat Eyes
Rhi in Pink
Ragwaters, Bitters, and Blue Ruin
Rose City Journal
Type Like the Wind

Portland and Oregon
Isaac Laquedem
Rantings of a [Censored] Bus Driver
Jeff Mapes
Vintage Portland
The Portlander
South Waterfront
Amanda Fritz
O City Hall Reporters
Guilty Carnivore
Old Town by Larry Norton
The Alaunt
Bend Blogs
Lost Oregon
Cafe Unknown
Tin Zeroes
David's Oregon Picayune
Mark Nelsen's Weather Blog
Travel Oregon Blog
Portland Daily Photo
Portland Building Ads
Portland Food and
Dave Knows Portland
Idaho's Portugal
Alameda Old House History
MLK in Motion

Retired from Blogging
Various Observations...
The Daily E-Mail
Saving James
Portland Freelancer
Furious Nads (b!X)
Izzle Pfaff
The Grich
Kevin Allman
AboutItAll - Oregon
Lost in the Details
Worldwide Pablo
Tales from the Stump
Whitman Boys
Two Pennies
This Stony Planet
1221 SW 4th
I am a Fish
Here Today
What If...?
Superinky Fixations
The Rural Bus Route
Another Blogger
Mikeyman's Computer Treehouse
Portland Housing Blog

Wonderfully Wacky
Dave Barry
Borowitz Report
Stuff White People Like
Worst of the Web

Valuable Time-Wasters
My Gallery of Jacks
Litterbox, On the Prowl
Litterbox, Bag of Bones
Litterbox, Scratch
Ride That Donkey
Singin' Horses
Rally Monkey
Simon Swears
Strong Bad's E-mail

Oregon News
The Oregonian
Portland Tribune
Willamette Week
The Sentinel
Southeast Examiner
Northwest Examiner
Sellwood Bee
Mid-County Memo
Vancouver Voice
Eugene Register-Guard
OPB - Portland
Salem Statesman-Journal
Oregon Capitol News
Portland Business Journal
Daily Journal of Commerce
Oregon Business
Portland Info Net
McMinnville News Register
Lake Oswego Review
The Daily Astorian
Bend Bulletin
Corvallis Gazette-Times
Roseburg News-Review
Medford Mail-Tribune
Ashland Daily Tidings
Newport News-Times
Albany Democrat-Herald
The Eugene Weekly
Portland IndyMedia
The Columbian

The Beatles
Bruce Springsteen
Joni Mitchell
Ella Fitzgerald
Steve Earle
Joe Ely
Stevie Wonder
Lou Rawls

E-mail, Feeds, 'n' Stuff

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

What would the Founding Fathers think?

If the people who signed the Declaration of Independence were alive today, how would they rate our nation?
Very good
Poor free polls

Comments (27)

Which Founding Fathers, Jack?

The slave owners or the non-slave owners?


Do you have a point?


The former would loathe what we have become.

The latter would believe we have become what they hoped but could not achieve in their lifetimes.

Up until well past the middle of the 20th century, the 4th of July celebrated the triumph of white males to be free (the right to vote, for an example).

Only since then has it been a date for all Americans celebrate.

I think they would marvel at our ingenuity and economic power, but would be repulsed by what our government has grown into. They would likely wonder why the Decider has us in Iraq, and would certainly question the wisdom of 700+ military bases in 135 countries.

They would, though, like Ron Paul. :)

I think they would marvel at us, really. Cars, the internet, our network of roadways, television, Starbucks, mp3 players, cell phones, modern medical advances, shopping malls, kitchen appliances, air travel, space travel and everything else in between. It is a very different world than when they signed the Declaration of Independance - so first they would have to wrap their minds around THAT. And I think they would be proud that their ideals have survived this long and that much change, that people haven't scrapped what they started and tried something else. That is sticking power.

What would they think of our current administration? I think they would realize that Americans have it so good, its made them mentally lazy.

I think you are right that they be repulsed by what our government has ever-growing nanny state trying to coddle us poor, ignorant citizens from cradle to grave while allowing political correctness to prevent the government from doing to one thing that it was primarily charged to do - protect its citizens and the Union.

I think pamphleteers like Thomas Paine would admire the bloggers and the revolutionary spirit found "on the ground" all over the country. But Jefferson would be dismayed at the yuppie sense of entitlement and spoiled self-indulgence also abounding.

I think the founders would wonder why they even bothered. So many of the things we were warned about and that the Constitution was was set up as a bulwark against are alive and well. Foreign Entanglements, Political Correctness, Free Speech Zones? Where did it say that in the Declaration Of Independence?

The founding fathers would be dismayed that the current administration has used a variety of power-grabbing moves to circumvent the entire point of American government: That power must be checked and balanced. I believe General George Washington would have Cheney and Bush arrested.

Only since then has it been a date for all Americans [to] celebrate.

I'm not so sure about that. Sure, by our standards the men of the 18th Century were backward -- a disgrace on many counts. But given where they came from and what they had to work with, the Founding Fathers did something incredibly positive and good. We owe them a great deal.

It's been the same with many heroes of succeeding generations.

But what we're doing now -- domestically, internationally -- is ghastly. We are moving backward, backward, into a hole that we may never come out of.

Thrilled at our cohesion & unity as one nation.

Impressed by all the new land we've added--all the way to the Pacific!

Amazed by the economic powerhouse we've become.

Awed that the document they fashioned is still used, abused, imitated & revered.

Thrilled at our cohesion & unity as one nation.

Now that's funny.

Impressed by all the new land we've added--all the way to the Pacific!

And the savages have all been tamed!

Amazed by the economic powerhouse we've become.

Mmmmm... Chinese antifreeze toothpaste.

Awed that the document they fashioned is still used, abused, imitated & revered.

"Imitated," as in Bagdad? We're especially good at the "abused" part.

"Imitated" in Japan. You're right Jack, out Nation just outright sucks. I'm leaving.

I am capable of distinguishing between the nation and the people who run it. At the moment, the latter, yes, outright suck as leaders. And their apologists are pitiful.

Go with god, butch!

Two things our Founding Fathers DID think:

1. When a government becomes oppressive, the people can and must (and, in their case, did) replace it.

2. When a President exercises his constitutional power to pardon or commute a crime to which he is related, the remedy is impeachment.

"That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles, and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness."

Not to beat the point to death, Jack, but many of the Founding Fathers believed fervently -notwithstanding the era they lived in- that slavery was a sin against God. Other Founding Fathers believed just as passionately, based on their economic reliance on the institution of slave labor, that slavery would be federally blessed or they would not agree to have their states join the Union.

As I wrote earlier, some Founding Fathers would rejoice that all Americans are now included under the umbrella of Jefferson's Declaration Of Independence that, on this point, said

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."

A number of the Founding Fathers aspired that Jefferson's "inalienable Rights" would apply to all -irrespective of race- when the Constitution was being developed a decade later.

Others among the Founding Fathers, along with their descendants,

were fervent racists that we cannot discount simply because of the era in which they lived. Many of that same era were repulsed at such views.

I am happy to be alive at this point in the United States history. For all of the problems that are pointed out here and elsewhere, I do not forget that there are many in this country for which basic human rights was fought for and achieved long after the Founding Fathers went to their graves by equally brave and heroic Americans, both men and women, of all races.

Among the grievances against King George:

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.

He has obstructed the Administration of Justice by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary Powers.

He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.

He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil Power.

[Deprived] us in many cases, of the benefit of Trial by Jury.

He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws...

He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation, and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & Perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.

I read the whole thing for the first time in my life this morning. It could have been ripped from today's headlines. I remember learning about the Revolution in middle school and believing such things would no longer be possible. Not in this country. And here we are.

What would the Founders think of how we've done? After reading The Declaration of Independence, I think they'd be horrified.

that we cannot discount simply because of the era in which they lived

Guess we'll have to disagree about that one. Wait 'til history looks back at us -- eating animals, for example. I hope the kids cut me some slack rather than dismiss everything I ever said or did because I was a "fervent species-ist."

basic human rights was fought for and achieved long after the Founding Fathers went to their graves by equally brave and heroic Americans, both men and women, of all races.

Some of the brave people who fought and died, yada yada yada, were bigots of the lowest order. Even Lincoln wanted to send the negroes back to Africa, where they'd be safe. That doesn't discount the heroes' sacrifice or their positive achievements, and it shouldn't disqualify their opinions on aspects of our society other than racial and gender equality.

You can also read the document here.


Thrilled at our cohesion & unity as one nation. (Now that's funny.)

From my reading of history, I understand that the biggest challenge of the war was to get each colony to fight under one banner.

Impressed by all the new land we've added--all the way to the Pacific! (And the savages have all been tamed!)

Again, from my reading of history I understand that savage-taming was a major pasttime of many of the founders (see Colonel Washington: French & Indian War)

Amazed by the economic powerhouse we've become (Mmmmm... Chinese antifreeze toothpaste.)
I don't think these expansionist slave-holding Virginia plantation holders ever took a vow of poverty!

I agree with you about the principles, Jack, but I thought the game was what the founders might think, not what I think!

Yeah, I guess you're right.

In a way, it depends on how literally you play the game. If you woke them up and gave them just a day or two to look around, it would all be a wonder to them, I'm sure.

I was thinking more along the lines of letting them have a year or two, and then asking them what they thought. Particularly of federal government policy.

To be balanced, they would likely also be dismayed by our diversity & shocked at the public role of women. (All that positive stuff was probably the cherry pie talking.) But I'm still grateful to the old guys for giving us a couple of amazing documents.

Randy writes; "I do not forget that there are many in this country for which basic human rights was fought for and achieved long after the Founding Fathers went to their graves by equally brave and heroic Americans, both men and women, of all races."

Last time I looked there were a lot of things that were still illegal to do in this country without the permission of government. Things that caused no harm to others such as building a house or starting a business. As it is since these things are often not permitted there are many in our society that do without many basic items needed for daily life.

One look at the City of Portland, and our Founding Fathers would once again - rebel.

Sorry, Fireman. I voted for you, but won't be fooled again.

"One look at the City of Portland, and our Founding Fathers would once again - rebel.

Sorry, Fireman. I voted for you, but won't be fooled again."

Is he up for re-election already?

Greg C

The Founders would be saddened that we still rely on slave labor to fuel the prosperous. They would immediately equate the undocumented alien populous with the indentured servants, sharecroppers, and slave population of their times. They would lament the fact that their ideals have fallen prey to base instincts of greed, avarice and narcissism. They would scratch their collective wigs in amazement that we have not improved upon their ideals.

"Founders would be saddened that we still rely on slave labor to fuel the prosperous."

Uh, friend, slave labor is compelled labor, not someone who crosses a border illegally to take low-wage work from other Americans.

As far as the Fireman, amazing how he can overlook everything the founders did to set up this country by calling them racist bigots. I don't think getting more slaves was why they founded the USA.

Maybe he can focus on the reason they set up a new government was to escape oppressive taxation and government without representation like Bush and the CoP. Sorry, I forgot, Bush at least lowered taxes.


As a lawyer/blogger, I get
to be a member of:

In Vino Veritas

Lange, Pinot Gris 2015
Kiona, Lemberger 2014
Willamette Valley, Pinot Gris 2015
Aix, Rosé de Provence 2016
Marchigüe, Cabernet 2013
Inazío Irruzola, Getariako Txakolina Rosé 2015
Maso Canali, Pinot Grigio 2015
Campo Viejo, Rioja Reserva 2011
Kirkland, Côtes de Provence Rosé 2016
Cantele, Salice Salentino Reserva 2013
Whispering Angel, Côtes de Provence Rosé 2013
Avissi, Prosecco
Cleto Charli, Lambrusco di Sorbara Secco, Vecchia Modena
Pique Poul, Rosé 2016
Edmunds St. John, Bone-Jolly Rosé 2016
Stoller, Pinot Noir Rosé 2016
Chehalem, Inox Chardonnay 2015
The Four Graces, Pinot Gris 2015
Gascón, Colosal Red 2013
Cardwell Hill, Pinot Gris 2015
L'Ecole No. 41, Merlot 2013
Della Terra, Anonymus
Willamette Valley, Dijon Clone Chardonnay 2013
Wraith, Cabernet, Eidolon Estate 2012
Januik, Red 2015
Tomassi, Valpolicella, Rafaél, 2014
Sharecropper's Pinot Noir 2013
Helix, Pomatia Red Blend 2013
La Espera, Cabernet 2011
Campo Viejo, Rioja Reserva 2011
Villa Antinori, Toscana 2013
Locations, Spanish Red Wine
Locations, Argentinian Red Wine
La Antigua Clásico, Rioja 2011
Shatter, Grenache, Maury 2012
Argyle, Vintage Brut 2011
Abacela, Vintner's Blend #16 Abacela, Fiesta Tempranillo 2014
Benton Hill, Pinot Gris 2015
Primarius, Pinot Gris 2015
Januik, Merlot 2013
Napa Cellars, Cabernet 2013
J. Bookwalter, Protagonist 2012
LAN, Rioja Edicion Limitada 2011
Beaulieu, Cabernet, Rutherford 2009
Denada Cellars, Cabernet, Maipo Valley 2014
Marchigüe, Cabernet, Colchagua Valley 2013
Oberon, Cabernet 2014
Hedges, Red Mountain 2012
Balboa, Rose of Grenache 2015
Ontañón, Rioja Reserva 2015
Three Horse Ranch, Pinot Gris 2014
Archery Summit, Vireton Pinot Gris 2014
Nelms Road, Merlot 2013
Chateau Ste. Michelle, Pinot Gris 2014
Conn Creek, Cabernet, Napa 2012
Conn Creek, Cabernet, Napa 2013
Villa Maria, Sauvignon Blanc 2015
G3, Cabernet 2013
Chateau Smith, Cabernet, Washington State 2014
Abacela, Vintner's Blend #16
Willamette Valley, Rose of Pinot Noir, Whole Clusters 2015
Albero, Bobal Rose 2015
Ca' del Baio Barbaresco Valgrande 2012
Goodfellow, Reserve Pinot Gris, Clover 2014
Lugana, San Benedetto 2014
Wente, Cabernet, Charles Wetmore 2011
La Espera, Cabernet 2011
King Estate, Pinot Gris 2015
Adelsheim, Pinot Gris 2015
Trader Joe's, Pinot Gris, Willamette Valley 2015
La Vite Lucente, Toscana Red 2013
St. Francis, Cabernet, Sonoma 2013
Kendall-Jackson, Pinot Noir, California 2013
Beaulieu, Cabernet, Napa Valley 2013
Erath, Pinot Noir, Estate Selection 2012
Abbot's Table, Columbia Valley 2014
Intrinsic, Cabernet 2014
Oyster Bay, Pinot Noir 2010
Occhipinti, SP68 Bianco 2014
Layer Cake, Shiraz 2013
Desert Wind, Ruah 2011
WillaKenzie, Pinot Gris 2014
Abacela, Fiesta Tempranillo 2013
Des Amis, Rose 2014
Dunham, Trautina 2012
RoxyAnn, Claret 2012
Del Ri, Claret 2012
Stoppa, Emilia, Red 2004
Primarius, Pinot Noir 2013
Domaines Bunan, Bandol Rose 2015
Albero, Bobal Rose 2015
Deer Creek, Pinot Gris 2015
Beaulieu, Rutherford Cabernet 2013
Archery Summit, Vireton Pinot Gris 2014
King Estate, Pinot Gris, Backbone 2014
Oberon, Napa Cabernet 2013
Apaltagua, Envero Carmenere Gran Reserva 2013
Chateau des Arnauds, Cuvee des Capucins 2012
Nine Hats, Red 2013
Benziger, Cabernet, Sonoma 2012
Roxy Ann, Claret 2012
Januik, Merlot 2012
Conundrum, White 2013
St. Francis, Sonoma Cabernet 2012

The Occasional Book

Phil Stanford - Rose City Vice
Kenneth R. Feinberg - What is Life Worth?
Kent Haruf - Our Souls at Night
Peter Carey - True History of the Kelly Gang
Suzanne Collins - The Hunger Games
Amy Stewart - Girl Waits With Gun
Philip Roth - The Plot Against America
Norm Macdonald - Based on a True Story
Christopher Buckley - Boomsday
Ryan Holiday - The Obstacle is the Way
Ruth Sepetys - Between Shades of Gray
Richard Adams - Watership Down
Claire Vaye Watkins - Gold Fame Citrus
Markus Zusak - I am the Messenger
Anthony Doerr - All the Light We Cannot See
James Joyce - Dubliners
Cheryl Strayed - Torch
William Golding - Lord of the Flies
Saul Bellow - Mister Sammler's Planet
Phil Stanford - White House Call Girl
John Kaplan & Jon R. Waltz - The Trial of Jack Ruby
Kent Haruf - Eventide
David Halberstam - Summer of '49
Norman Mailer - The Naked and the Dead
Maria Dermoȗt - The Ten Thousand Things
William Faulkner - As I Lay Dying
Markus Zusak - The Book Thief
Christopher Buckley - Thank You for Smoking
William Shakespeare - Othello
Joseph Conrad - Heart of Darkness
Bill Bryson - A Short History of Nearly Everything
Cheryl Strayed - Tiny Beautiful Things
Sara Varon - Bake Sale
Stephen King - 11/22/63
Paul Goldstein - Errors and Omissions
Mark Twain - A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court
Steve Martin - Born Standing Up: A Comic's Life
Beverly Cleary - A Girl from Yamhill, a Memoir
Kent Haruf - Plainsong
Hope Larson - A Wrinkle in Time, the Graphic Novel
Rudyard Kipling - Kim
Peter Ames Carlin - Bruce
Fran Cannon Slayton - When the Whistle Blows
Neil Young - Waging Heavy Peace
Mark Bego - Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul (2012 ed.)
Jenny Lawson - Let's Pretend This Never Happened
J.D. Salinger - Franny and Zooey
Charles Dickens - A Christmas Carol
Timothy Egan - The Big Burn
Deborah Eisenberg - Transactions in a Foreign Currency
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. - Slaughterhouse Five
Kathryn Lance - Pandora's Genes
Cheryl Strayed - Wild
Fyodor Dostoyevsky - The Brothers Karamazov
Jack London - The House of Pride, and Other Tales of Hawaii
Jack Walker - The Extraordinary Rendition of Vincent Dellamaria
Colum McCann - Let the Great World Spin
Niccolò Machiavelli - The Prince
Harper Lee - To Kill a Mockingbird
Emma McLaughlin & Nicola Kraus - The Nanny Diaries
Brian Selznick - The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Sharon Creech - Walk Two Moons
Keith Richards - Life
F. Sionil Jose - Dusk
Natalie Babbitt - Tuck Everlasting
Justin Halpern - S#*t My Dad Says
Mark Herrmann - The Curmudgeon's Guide to Practicing Law
Barry Glassner - The Gospel of Food
Phil Stanford - The Peyton-Allan Files
Jesse Katz - The Opposite Field
Evelyn Waugh - Brideshead Revisited
J.K. Rowling - Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
David Sedaris - Holidays on Ice
Donald Miller - A Million Miles in a Thousand Years
Mitch Albom - Have a Little Faith
C.S. Lewis - The Magician's Nephew
F. Scott Fitzgerald - The Great Gatsby
William Shakespeare - A Midsummer Night's Dream
Ivan Doig - Bucking the Sun
Penda Diakité - I Lost My Tooth in Africa
Grace Lin - The Year of the Rat
Oscar Hijuelos - Mr. Ives' Christmas
Madeline L'Engle - A Wrinkle in Time
Steven Hart - The Last Three Miles
David Sedaris - Me Talk Pretty One Day
Karen Armstrong - The Spiral Staircase
Charles Larson - The Portland Murders
Adrian Wojnarowski - The Miracle of St. Anthony
William H. Colby - Long Goodbye
Steven D. Stark - Meet the Beatles
Phil Stanford - Portland Confidential
Rick Moody - Garden State
Jonathan Schwartz - All in Good Time
David Sedaris - Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
Anthony Holden - Big Deal
Robert J. Spitzer - The Spirit of Leadership
James McManus - Positively Fifth Street
Jeff Noon - Vurt

Road Work

Miles run year to date: 113
At this date last year: 155
Total run in 2016: 155
In 2015: 271
In 2014: 401
In 2013: 257
In 2012: 129
In 2011: 113
In 2010: 125
In 2009: 67
In 2008: 28
In 2007: 113
In 2006: 100
In 2005: 149
In 2004: 204
In 2003: 269

Clicky Web Analytics