Among the most successful cases of propaganda and indoctrination has been convincing the American people of how necessary and beneficial the military establishment, the CIA, and the NSA are to the safety and freedom of the American people. From the first grade to big sporting events, people are inculcated with this conviction.
To see how differently the Founding Fathers and our American ancestors viewed a national security state, carefully consider the following quotes. As you read them, think about all the U.S. national-security state’s many regime-change operations in the Middle East and elsewhere, its ongoing provocations against Russia and China, it secret surveillance program, and its decades of assassinations.
James Madison: “A standing military force, with an overgrown Executive will not long be safe companions to liberty. The means of defence agst. foreign danger, have been always the instruments of tyranny at home. Among the Romans it was a standing maxim to excite a war, whenever a revolt was apprehended. Throughout all Europe, the armies kept up under the pretext of defending, have enslaved the people.”
Patrick Henry: “A standing army we shall have, also, to execute the execrable commands of tyranny; and how are you to punish them? Will you order them to be punished? Who shall obey these orders? Will your mace-bearer be a match for a disciplined regiment?”
Henry St. George Tucker in Blackstone’s 1768 Commentaries on the Laws of England: “Wherever standing armies are kept up, and when the right of the people to keep and bear arms is, under any color or pretext whatsoever, prohibited, liberty, if not already annihilated, is on the brink of destruction.”
Commonwealth of Virginia in 1788: “… that standing armies in time of peace are dangerous to liberty, and therefore ought to be avoided, as far as the circumstances and protection of the community will admit; and that in all cases the military should be under strict subordination to and governed by the civil power.”
Pennsylvania Convention: “… as standing armies in time of peace are dangerous to liberty, they ought not to be kept up; and that the military shall be kept under strict subordination to and be governed by the civil power.”
U.S. State Department website: “Wrenching memories of the Old World lingered in the 13 original English colonies along the eastern seaboard of North America, giving rise to deep opposition to the maintenance of a standing army in time of peace. All too often the standing armies of Europe were regarded as, at best, a rationale for imposing high taxes, and, at worst, a means to control the civilian population and extort its wealth.”