As we once again pause to celebrate the founding of our country on Independence Day, we should also take stock of the great genius of our nation’s founding.
Breitbart News Daily spent this July fourth exploring all aspects of our Revolutionary War against England. Speaking with Breitbart correspondent Warner Todd Huston, SiriusXM host and Executive Chairman of Breitbart News Steve Bannon wondered what the basic origins of the Revolution really were.
Huston noted that there has never been a nation like the United States because our country is the first country ever invented on a specific set of ideals.
Huston pointed out that the US didn’t just evolve by happenstance, it was actually crafted based first of all on the English Common law as written by Jurists such as Sir Edward Cooke and William Blackstone. But the genius of those great jurists was supplemented with the classic Roman and Greek philosophers along with more recent works by philosophers such as Montesquieu, Adam Smith, John Locke, and others of the French and Scottish Enlightenment.
“We weren’t just an accidental nation, that was created by geography or bloodlines we had created an actual, thought out idea,” Huston replied, “and it was something that was straying from Britain’s old line royalty.”
Indeed, America was based on the idea that the whole of the people would be educated and enlightened on the principles of the founding and would put their mind to the improvement of the country. Not just for selfish needs but for virtuous ones.
And virtue was the key principle.
The founders expected all Americans, from the lowest stable boy to the richest merchant, to carry on his daily duties with the needs of the community and the nation in mind at a level just as important as personal need.
Bannon went on to point out that only a third of Americans were supportive of the war against England. Of the other two thirds, one third was ambivalent about the war and the final third was still loyal to the English Crown.
“What was it about two thirds of our countrymen, or over 50 percent at least, that weren’t attracted to this kind of radical idea we had about this country?” Bannon asked.
“That’s exactly right,” Huston said, “It was a radical idea. It was brand new. So there were a lot of people — that one third that supported England, as you said — they were traditionalists. They were saying, ‘well, what do we need all this new stuff for? We have England. We have our mother country.’”
Huston noted that the last third saw no reason to get involved, they just wanted to lead their lives. In fact, Huston went on to point out that many of that last third lived in the southern colonies where the war hadn’t yet reached and they just didn’t understand why they should involve themselves in a war going on so many miles to the north.
But England made a fatal error with the southern colonies.
“It was probably Britain’s going down south through the southern areas of our country, that actually lost them the war,” Huston said. Because a lot of that third that didn’t care about the war were down in the southern parts where the war was not touching” until British troops decided to swing south and upset that balance.
Bannon went on to ask if Americans have lost the “thirst to go back to the original documents and ideals of the nation.”
Huston replied that we probably have.
“We really have strayed as far as you possibly can from our founding principles and the ideas of limited government”, Huston replied. “We have people in government now that see government as an excuse to do whatever they want to do as opposed to a limit on their power.”
Bannon’s final question was about America’s interest in the Revolutionary War. Are Americans still interested in reading and learning about the war he wondered?
“It seems to me we don’t have that thirst,” Huston concluded, “and it’s something that programs like what you are doing today would help drum up in America again. We need it so badly because we need to get back to our principles.”