Edmund Burke (1729-1797) wrote that battle groupings in the war against State tyranny are “little platoons” – family, church and local community that orient us towards the virtues of temperance and fortitude. My little platoon of family, friends and clients relies on each other, not government handouts from a “tutelary State”. The Life of Julia is a 2012 Obama campaign video that purported to show how government programs had supported a woman named Julia at every point in her life. It’s a disturbing vision of a caretaker nanny state federal government that provides for peoples’ needs from cradle to grave.
Daneen’s 10th essay is entitled Choosing the Road to Serfdom. He contrasts Serfdom with Liberty, suggesting that Liberty is improperly understood in today’s world to mean freedom to do whatever you want. Julia in the Obama commercial would consider herself FREE – free from any specific bonds or obligations to anyone so she can live her life however she wants. But that’s not Liberty properly understood – Liberty is Law – to rule and be ruled – duty and honor, not license to do as one pleases.
Serfdom, properly understood, is an arrangement by which you owe specific duties to a specific person, a Lord – and in turn, that Lord owes you specific duties as well. Daneen suggests that we can learn something from the Serfdom way of social organization. He proffers an economic, cultural and political vision of self-rule, self-restraint and duty among strong personal relationships of trust and shared sacrifices. Our War Chest weapons of wealth, awareness and aristocratic values are the tip of the spear in an ongoing war against a formidable and immoral enemy. Next week, we’ll bring these enemies, who continue to attack our little platoon, into sharper focus.