Mike:  If you want to see what I was talking about when I gave the rah, rah, “You are not walking away from this revolution, Mister” speech on Wednesday, go to Imaginative, or just Google it, and it’s the top story, and it’s Brad Birzer’s review of the movie.  But there’s something else that’s contained—AG, did you get a chance to read Birzer’s piece?

AG:  Not yet.

Mike:  Okay.  There’s something else that is contained in Birzer’s review. And as I said, it’s a lot about the show, but it’s also a lot about the country. It’s a lot about the people.  And as Birzer points out, the term “republic” comes from the Greek “res publica.” And that was Greek for that which is good. This is why the Greeks organized republics, because they thought they were good. We think that they’re good. We don’t have a republic anymore. And Birzer was recounting, and I found this amazing, being the history buff that I am, that as early as 1805, there were Mike Churches in 1805. Her name was Mercy Otis Warren. Yeah, I know. Go ahead and laugh.

Mercy Otis Warren was an early historian of the early country, of the early republic. And 1805, a mere 30 years, or 29 years after the American Revolution commenced in earnest, she was already seeing the beginning signs of the decay of the republic, the decay of republicanism. And she resolved, and Birzer quotes her here, to go ahead and write down what it was that the struggle for independence meant, what it was that drove and inspired the men that instigated it, that fought for it, that executed it, that stood by it, that pledged their lives, fortunes, and sacred honor to it and what have you. She did all these things. And she wrote them down, and it’s a history of the American Revolution, I believe is what—I think you can get it at Google Books. It’s probably in print, too. Mercy Otis Warren.

And what Birzer was recounting is that we have tried every remedy—and I just thought this was just so poignant and so relevant to today’s discussion. The people in this country have tried every remedy. We have bought every snake oil remedy there is out there. We bought porkulus. We bought stimulus. We bought tax cuts. We bought new presidents. We bought new congresses. We bought new policies. We created agencies. Why, we managed the air, we managed the land, we managed the sea, we managed everything. We regulated banks. We regulated stocks. We did this. We traded with the world. We entered world leagues. Hell, we fought the entire world. We fought terrorism. We did all these things, and we’re still continuing to do all these things. We managed our crops. We paid people to not grow crops. We ruined free trade in our own hemisphere. We tried that. We’ve tried everything. We’ve subsidized industries.

We’ve tried everything except—and this is Brad Birzer’s brilliant, salient point here—we have tried everything to fix our current malaise except republicanism. That gift, that glowing, burning, beautiful gift that those men called the Founders left us. We tried everything except that. That’s the only thing that is left on the damn table unused. That’s criminal. And there are some of us that see that as our escape hatch, as our way out of this. And there are some of us that recognize that it is not the best laid plans of men that lead to success, that lead to prosperity, that lead to happiness.

Books related to this topic of this essay may be found in The Imaginative Conservative BookstoreThis is a revised transcript from The Mike Church Show

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  1. With all due respect to Mr Church, ‘res publica’ is from the Latin, and not the Greek. Its nearest equivalent in the Attic tongue would have been ‘politeia,’ which appears in Plato’s “Republic.” Roughly translated into modern English, the Latinate ‘res publica’ could mean anything from public affairs to public property — basically anything pertaining to or belonging to the State and the Commonwealth therein. Because English is partially derived from the Norman, which in turn is influenced by the French, which itself is a Romance descendant of the vulgarised Late Latin, which itself is a debased derivative of the Classical Latin spoken and written by the Senatorial class at the height of Republican Rome, the modern English term ‘Republic’ can be said to be drawn from the modern French ‘République’ — always capitalised when written in the original French, as if to emphasize the omnipotence and omnipresence of the State in continental European powers who fancy themselves the cultural and political heirs of Rome. This legacy holds especially true in their hypocritical insistence on Republican ‘egalitarianism’ — which in reality is anything but — and in their insidious use of that old Imperial ruse to bribe and disarm the people through contemporary forms of ‘bread and circuses’ — welfare payments and state television. Not very ‘Republican,’ to be sure, but then again, what would this stodgy old monarchist know about that. Alright, not very old at all, but still a stodgy monarchist nevertheless.

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