Jefferson Believed in Intelligent Design and the Blessings of Liberty

Jefferson’s belief in a Creator Who had a purpose for humanity, an intelligent design, is plain from the preamble of our Declaration of Independence:
jefferson“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.

Jefferson considers these truths to be self-evident. If you don’t agree, Jefferson’s America was not for you. Jefferson and the signers continue:

  • 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 to these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to 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.

Jefferson’s great paradigm shift, a shift that all the founders shared, was from the Divine right of kings to the manifest and self-evident God-given rights of the individual to liberty. Whether one agrees or disagrees with Jefferson’s view on Intelligent Design, that huge shift is why his views of the creation must be taught at the high school and college level. Without an understanding the idea of a Creator of an orderly universe with a clear purpose for humanity, students cannot properly understand the American idea.

Thomas Jefferson’s idea is that legitimate government is responsible to God to secure the rights He has given to men, rights that the Creator has designed for everyone. In the design of mankind the Creator’s purpose is revealed. Against that purpose no government, monarchy or republic, dare stand. That’s the American idea.

The resounding triumph of Jefferson’s words are often ignored by the uncritical mind as some reflexive product of a religious background. This could not be more incorrect. Jefferson’s views were primarily philosophical; they were not religious. The key is in Jefferson’s term: “self-evident.” As an example of Jefferson’s strongly reasoned and critically evaluative thinking is some of what Jefferson wrote to John Adams:

“They (Diderot and others) say then that it is more simple to believe… in the eternal pre-existence of the world … than to believe in the eternal pre-existence of an ulterior cause, or Creator of the world, a being whom we see not, and know not, of whose form… no sense informs us, no power of the mind enables us to… comprehend. On the contrary I hold (without appeal to revelation) that when we take a view of the Universe… it is impossible for the human mind not to perceive and feel a conviction of design, consummate skill, and indefinite power in every atom of it’s composition. The movements of the heavenly bodies, so exactly held in their course by the balance of centrifugal and centripetal forces (Newton), the structure of our earth itself, with it’s distribution of lands, waters and atmosphere, animal and vegetable bodies, examined in all their minutest particles, insects mere atoms of life, yet as perfectly organised as man or mammoth, the mineral substances, their generation and uses, it is impossible, I say, for the human mind not to believe that there is, in all this, design, … a fabricator of all things…” [emphasis mine].

This is what Jefferson meant by “self-evident.” Of particular note is his phrase “without appeal to revelation.” This means Jefferson did not believe in design because of any religious text or religious background. Jefferson believed based on what he could see in the world around him. This notion of self-evident belief in a Creator is central to Jefferson’s idea of religion and religious expression. While Jefferson was conveniently in Europe as the constitution was written, his letters were still a force in the debate.

Many will say that if Jefferson had only known about Darwin, he would have had a different view.  Notice that the perfect mathematical laws of Newtonian physics influenced Jefferson’s beliefs, and his study of the “minutest particles…of life” also persuaded him of an Intelligent Designer. During the last century astronomy has again indicated a beginning for the universe, and based on this beginning, the mathematics of microbiology has disproven the theory of the origin of life arising from random forces.1 The real question is whether Charles Darwin would believe his own theories if he had seen modern science. Either way, Jefferson’s views are critical to understanding his perspective on the role of religion in American society.

Again, consider the force of Jefferson’s beliefs as expressed in the Declaration of Independence. Jefferson, by writing “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness,” all but perfectly echoes the key terms of Locke’s Enlightenment ideas about the natural rights of man (“life, liberty, and estate” see: paragraph 5 and 6). These words are not a mere student’s assent to the wisdom of his English heritage. They constitute, in literary terms, an allusion. Jefferson’s work purposely subsumes all that Locke had written under a larger banner of liberty than had yet been conceived. Consider these words of the Declaration of Independence: “When in the Course of human Events, it becomes necessary for one People …to assume among the Powers of the Earth, the separate and equal Station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them…” Jefferson only declares the Enlightenment ideas after citing Nature’s God. While Locke’s ideas reside in the equality of men because of the powers of reason, Jefferson’s sees, instead, the God of Nature’s Divine plan for the liberty of all mankind. The design of mankind indicates His purpose in endowing us with reason and with the concomitant natural abilities or rights.

Jefferson, was of course, a man of his times. He was an Enlightenment thinker. However,  instead of being a mere disciple of Locke or Rousseau, Jefferson was the master. Jefferson’s preamble is a capstone for and an apex to Enlightenment thinking. By way of the witness of natural rights, Jefferson undermines the Divine right of kings and establishes the Divinely ordained sovereignty of the individual; Jefferson does so with an eloquence that allows for all who recognize a Designer in the fabric of life to plainly see the Creator’s plan for humanity’s liberty.

The Jeffersonian idea was for a nation united in liberty answerable, as one people, to a benevolent God, the Creator of the Heaven and Earth.

1. An exhaustive list of Nobel Prize winners who have done the math on this can be found in Stephen Meyer’s Signature in the Cell (see also my previous articles “A Scientific Consensus…” and “Darwinism Deselected:…”). Perhaps the best synopsis for those not scientifically minded is a video promotion for Signature in the Cell that simulates some of amazing discoveries in recent microbiology. Modern science was wrong on the atom and the cell. Neither are irreducible units of the world around us. The more we look into the depths of the world around us the more phenomenal it reveals itself to be.

Addendum 1/31/12– As a result of losing some of the great board posts to the original article:

The point of the foregoing is that the theory of intelligent design is not, in Jefferson’s view, faith based. Furthermore, Jefferson is but a case in point for the many founders who signed the Declaration of Independence. Therefore, it cannot be considered unconstitutional or un-American to discuss the theoretical elements pertaining to the reasons the founders believed in and based our laws on an Intelligent Designer.

More importantly, the logic of a political system based on the notion of intelligent design must be taught. It is our duty and responsibility to teach that the founders believed men were designed for liberty and that governments that refuse to respect these liberties are counter, not only to humanity itself, but to the plan of the God of nature.

The above is a legal argument rather than a scientific argument for including intelligent design in the classroom. However, if Ron Paul means anything to Libertarians, then the position of this article and other articles on evolution by Paul Benedict are genuinely Libertarian. For more information see the following link to Ron Paul’s views:

Ron Paul doesn’t accept evolution unedited.

By the way, Ron Paul is a Dr. of medicine. He certainly has more of a scientific background than many who love to pound these boards.

Update:

The distinction between a religion and a philosophy is the willingness to relate one’s convictions to observable evidence. Jefferson’s willingness to do this is demonstrated in his discussions of Dedirot and other Enlightenment pre-Darwinian naturalist philosophers. His willingness to do so is far greater than the willingness shown by many in the ‘scientific’ community today.

For instance, the latest analysis of human DNA indicates that our genetic information could not have come from Darwinian-styled ancestors or predecessors. Instead of recognizing, based on this evidence that Darwinian theories of evolution are impossible, that there may well be an Intelligent Designer; scientists are forced to publicly comply with a religion of materialistic or naturalistic causes that is “beyond discussion.” Modern ‘science’ has devolved into a cult of maniacs.

The Defamation of Marriage and the Rise of Totalitarianism

To abandon celebrating the self-evident truths of what a marriage is, is to abandon reason itself, for reason tells us that the oaths of marriage are abiding in their humanity. The abiding meaning of these oaths to the human spirit flow from their relationship to the commitment to others demanded by every biological union of man and Cer4F0TWQAEspsJwoman. The oaths of marriage are not for self.  The oaths of marriage begin with self, but they are in exchange for something higher in people than their personal desire. The exchange of vows is about far more than joint financial agreements that mutually benefit each ‘partner.’ Marriage oaths are selfless commitments made because of each individual’s honesty with reality.

In all of this “marriage equality” legalese is a kind of bitterness, a jealously that requires the defamation of marriage from personal spite. Only the strain-at-a-gnat, most superficial things that can, by arcane, nonsensical sophistry be associated with marriage, are of interest to modern “justice.” Under the guise of the misguided pursuit of the jurisprudence of equal outcomes as justice, the courts claim the state has no interest in the human part of marriage. Such courts and such laws must ignore liberty because liberty is a human thing. Only human hearts can see the bars that hold living things in prisons for what they truly are. 

It’s a hardness of heart, not justice, that shuts out human concerns, loves, and, finally, liberty in the name of equality.

Cer4FzQXEAQh1eDNo rational system of law can survive an arrogance so blinding it cannot see the purpose of the sacred promises of marriage, vows that are far above a desire for financial and social advantage or “equality.” No civilization can endure a foolishness so malignant that it would deny the reality, reason, and the nature of these vows. The alternatives are the savagery of totalitarian tyranny and mob rule. Vows like those that are part of marriage bring out the best, most humane in mankind. A nation that would ignore these values is inhuman and very dangerous.

Consider as an example of our national vulgarity, the legal corruption surrounding the trial of California’s Proposition 8, a trial that ended a voter initiated amendment to California’s constitution defining marriage. The definition of marriage the voters chose was, obviously, the definition of marriage already embodied in California’s constitution and family law.

Because the monkey trial atmosphere surrounding California’s Proposition 8 so reeked of corruption, it marriageis very difficult to tell from the edited version of the “Proponents Defense of Proposition 8″ (Walker’s ruling p. 6) how well ProtectMarriage.com defended that crazy California proposition that marriage is between a man and a woman. For instance, Proposition 8 is, first about preserving the definition of marriage in our laws. A marriage is a marriage and always will be a marriage despite the judicial travesty of putting marriage on trial for inequality. However, in protecting the definition of marriage, Proposition 8 is foremost a defense of the ‘right to marry’ enshrined in federal and state law. Neither the plaintiffs, the majority of voters, nor the judiciary have any authority to infringe upon this natural right of a man and a woman to join in marriage. Tragically, it has been the courts that have led the charge, not to preserve the right to marry, but to deprive the people of the legal recognition of this right. This is prima facie evidence that the bow of our constitutional government is sinking, and, like the stern of the Titanic, an American totalitarianism rises.

What was born in the darkness of California’s corrupt judicial proceedings, proceedings that showed a profound hatred of our constitutional law, can only bring deep evil to our society and culture.

Plainly some of ProtectMarriage.com’s arguments sounded like they were the wrong ones for this particular California judge. For instance, arguing that “We should not accept a court decision that may result in public schools teaching our own kids that gay marriage is ok…” (p. 7) is like arguing natural rights before a hereditary monarch. This is the blindness that passes for light in the dim and reeking recesses of our national “jurisprudence.”

Judge Walker sought to undermine a sound premise argued by ProtectMarriage. Judge Walker’s summary of this part of the argument reads, “…If the gay marriage ruling [of the California Supreme Court] is not overturned, TEACHERS COULD BE REQUIRED to teach young children there is no difference between gay marriage and traditional marriage” (p.7). Walker emphasized “could” to emphasize that the gay community repeatedly denied that teaching gay marriage to kindergartners was on the agenda. Apparently, the good judge felt it was time to refight the campaign, not in the public square where the brainless, dirty masses have the right and power to disagree. Instead, he chose to bolster its wijudgesdom by refighting the campaign in the sanctity of his safely elite, intellectually pure, courtroom. He didn’t argue the law. He argued words spoken in campaign literature. About this though, he was, as about everything else, wrong and deceitfully wrong. California history has shown conclusively that now that the Supreme Court of the United States has made dehumanized marriage the law of the land, our government schools will immediately become sexual “reeducation camps” from the earliest years.

Additionally, based on Judge Walker’s conclusion that asserting that marriage is between a man and a woman “targets gay and lesbians specifically due to sex (p.120),” he seems to have surprised everyone by taking the words “no difference” to mean no “qualitative” difference. In other words, he indicated that all who say that marriage is between a man and a woman intend to teach that same sex couples cannot be successful parents or that their commitment to each other is in some way inferior to that of heterosexual couples. He took, apparently without asking clear follow up questions, the plaintiff’s position that those who espouse the outrageous claim that marriage is between a man and a woman do so to intentionally disparage same sex couples. Nothing could be farther from the truth. Everyone recognizes that the differences that sane people wish to preserve between same sex unions and marriage are factual, biological, and historic.  If there is scientific evidence that children raised by same sex couples do not fare well, that is a matter for science and law. Courts have no more business legislating this that they do in devising the means of conducting open heart surgery.

ProtectMarriage explained that the plaintiffs give no alternative definition of marriage and send, therefore, every branch of family law into an endless morass of absurdity. Their words fell on deaf, callous ears.

It is, nevertheless, apparent that ProtectMarriage made a sound and vigorous defense of the benefits of kidsmarriage to children and for the state’s profound interest in the weakest among us. This is a sound argument, and in happier days such words would never have fallen unheeded to the ground. But these are perilous times. These are the days of a social obsession with an equality of outcomes so complete and total that no aspect of civil life is spared it’s intrusion. Instead of showing the natural compassion for the weak that must be part of a judicial temperament, Judge Walker fixated on bizarre celestial visions of equal protection. Instead of erring on the side of caution, Judge Walker put the state’s interest in assuring the will of the people with regards to the welfare of their children aside. As a result, one who seems unfit for the judgments of law has set himself up as the final authority and arbiter of the benefits of family to children. Judge Walker accepted novel studies over the proven wisdom of the ages. He did this because, in American society today, this is true enlightenment.

The defamation of marriage is the consequence of an idolatrous blindness and an ascending American totalitarianism.

These are the days of the leveling of our land. There can be no excellence because there can be no failure. It does not matter whether you study hard and become an outstanding physician who is able to help people in ways no one had ever thought about before; your outcome must be the same as your neighbor’s. It does not matter whether you’ve chosen to do drugs all through high school, the state must provide for your college education and the best health care that everyone else’s money can buy. Likewise, if you are a homosexual it is just not fair that you can’t be married like everyone else, even though it is physically impossible.

We have been making excuses for everyone in society.  It is not compassion but an obsessive craving for a self-deceptive, idolatrous ideal that thrives on its own relativistic madness. A fear of the truth, like the Tower of Babel, is being, block by block, lifted from the cheering masses of smug, useless “intellectuals” that populate the sterile hopeless corridors of our universities. Only the rise of a totalitarian state could defy the natural light of liberty completely enough to satisfy craving for self importance.

Most of the working people in America could care less about this new religion of egalitarianism. However, the elite of our educational institutions know this idol and have bowed before its golden horns.the-golden-calf

Western society’s “new” ideology, its “new” religion, is one so psychotic it can tolerate none other. Its first creed is that “all truth is relative.” Hence its others: “all choices are virtue,” “all choices are equal,” and, therefore “no choice has a consequence.” This is not a happy time in California where the merit of the family is not in the state interest. This is not a happy time in the United States when “equal protection” is exalted above sanity in a farce beyond historic parallel. The notion that some choices are a blessing to the individual and to his country is a notion that can no longer be tolerated. Such a conclusion is unacceptable, so no fact that leads to such conclusions can, ipso facto, be valid. Today we are closer to the days of the monkey-courts of the French Revolution than we were last week. An American totalitarianism is rising.

Those Earning $400,000 a Year aren’t Marx’s Rich

The president of the Chicago teachers’ union’s comments about beheading the rich, when taken with Obama’s desire to de-capitalize those making $400,000, shows a misunderstanding of the French Revolution and its importance to Marxist doctrine about the rich. In America, by Marx’s own standards, those making $400,000 a year are not the rich, evil, bourgeoisie.

guillotine3[1]Bourgeoisie is a term for a social class during the French Revolution that eventually became the enemy of every good Communist. Marx claimed that the bourgeoisie of the French revolution, the talented, but far from rich members of the French 3rd estate, evolved through industrialization into the evil, crony-capitalist, monopolistic, ruling rich that workers (the proletariat) must destroy. Marx’s post-industrial evil bourgeoisie had a single distinguishing characteristic: they owned the means of production.

Of course, today, most free market types recognize that any monopoly is counter productive, but Marx had a far better solution than deregulation. His was much like Karen Lewis’ “off with their heads!” Karen should be warned though, after the French Revolutionary ruling committee, the one with Orwellian name: the Committee of Public Safety, was done beheading the members of the French 1st and 2nd estates, they went after everyone else for almost anything else. They were sort of prototypes for Mau Tse-Tung and Joseph Stalin.

Dear Marxists everywhere, this is not a coincidence. Whether you read Edmund Burke or Friedrich von Hayek, the reality is this: the rights of property protect us all. To unmake the foundational relationship between a law-abiding man’s work and his earnings destroys the fabric of law, and leaves only lawless tyranny. But I digress. Back to whom Karen Davis and Obama ought to be beheading according to the purist Marxist doctrine.

Karen ought to be beheading those who own the means of production, for they are Marx’s evil rich. They are the French 1st and 2nd estate. They are also, as Karen sort of alluded to when she said:  “… there is one party in this country – that is, the party of money, with two branches…” By this she seems to mean that today’s political elite are the modern bourgeoisie. In this she was talking Marxist doctrine, for the French 2nd estate were those who were exempt from the taxes and the rules the rest of France had to live by. Today these are elected officials, judicial appointees, lobbyists and all the political bureaucrats currently eating us out of house and home.

Karen, though, like far too many modern American Marxists, in the spirit of the Reign of Terror, has redefined the bourgeoisie, the “rich” in search of more victims for the tax guillotine.  Karen and Obama need to review American class structure, not according to yearly salary, but according to the characteristics described by Marx.

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There are two leisure classes in modern America, the lower class and the upper class. Both classes exert tremendous control over the means of production. The entire working class is the middle class.

The American middle class itself can be broken down into the Upper-Middle Class, Middle Class, and the Lower-Middle Class. Daumier BourgeoisAmerica’s upper middle class are the skilled artisans and traders of the Middle Ages. These are not the land holders of medieval society, nor are they the bourgeoisie of the industrial society that spawned Marx’s analysis.

The American lower-middle class are unskilled workers who, in many ways, are similar to the Marxist proletariat. Unlike a true proletariat, the American lower-middle class worker can develop marketable skills. Some will and some won’t.

The core of the American middle class are the semi-skilled or highly educated class. This class is dependent on institutional structures for their social status. Not everyone can succeed in America’s bureaucracies, but most can. This group is exemplified by policemen, teachers, military officers, college professors, and tax collectors. These are not the pure capitalists of Marxist ideology, for they don’t control the means of production and, independently, they produce nothing of value. Members of the modern Committee of Public Safety, often found in our institutions of higher learning, want to call these middle class Americans the upper-middle class. This is for two reasons: first, it makes intellectuals feel better to call themselves the upper-middle class, and, secondly, this allows the political class to argue that all evil comes from doctors, lawyers, and pizza franchise owners. Conveniently, this allows both of these subgroups of the middle class to avoid responsibility for their own monumental failures. But when the characteristics of each class are considered, it is plain that, in America, $400,000 a year makes you part of the working upper-middle class.

America’s upper-middle class are skilled workers. This class is exemplified by doctors, certain kinds of engineers, computer programmers, and those capable of sophisticated repair work. Likewise, lawyers, and those skilled in business investment or organization are members of this class. These individuals can prosper without the help of a bureaucratic organization or a union. This financially mobile upper-middle class produces services that are independently valuable. In America, these upper middle class members do not control the means of production; they are the means of production.

Doctors are the CEO’s of their small businesses because they produce the essential services first hand. Even the investors and entrepreneurs at this level often invest borrowed money. Part of their skill involves presenting and selling business plans to those who do own the means of production. Like the doctor, their ability to recognize value and market share means they quarterback a team of workers that, together, produce value.

America’s upper middle class are the skilled artisans and traders of the Middle Ages. These are not the land holders of medieval society, nor are they the bourgeoisie of the industrial society that spawned Marx’s analysis. Even though some of these may break the $400,000 per year mark, they are not the classic Marxist bourgeoisie.

Within this group are also those in the entertainment business such as actors and professional athletes. These later groups, like salesmen, may produce income in short, intense bursts. To be properly understood within the American cartelclass structure, an athlete’s or an entertainer’s yearly income should be amortized over the lifespan of the earner.

The bourgeoisie, those of inherited leisure who control the means of production in America are not those who gain status within the bureaucracy of the banks, they are the bankers we don’t see. Likewise, the leisure class are not those who are working their way up in a Wall Street firm, those of inherited leisure are the massive invisible, individual investors. While Americans who live by interest on their bonds and the dividends of their stock are the leisure upper class, the true haute bourgeoisie, those who hold the means of all production in the industrialized West, are those who provide fossil fuels.

The failure to truly explain class structure in America using Marxist language, has allowed the word “rich” to be demagogued. For instance, while statistics become susceptible to great error when taxable income is the question, it does seem that in any one year, those who make more than $400,000 can’t be greater than 4 or 5 % of the population. But it is a often a different 4 or 5 % every year. The years an American breaks $400,000 are often the years of his “bumper crop.” These are the best years of the entrepreneur’s life. From these years of peak salary and production, an upper-middle class member lays the basis for buying the means of production back from China or Saudi Arabia. To tax the upper middle class of America is to practice the Bush doctrine of preemption, not on terrorists, but on “the rich.”

moneyObama and Lewis must remember that Marx lumps the teachers and the business owners together as the petite bourgeoisie. Unless these two want Fascism, as good Marxists they must support the unity of these to strata of society against the truly evil rich, the 1st and 2nd estates in the French Revolution and the haute bourgeoisie of industrialization.

Ironically, the French thought they were America. At first, the French were applauded by the English liberals for their glorious rout of tyranny; ultimately, as the Reign of Terror ignited, even the best liberals were utterly disillusioned. From the beginning, however, the French Revolution was condemned by Edmund Burke. The strength of Burke’s conservatism was his ability to distinguish the failed elements of the French Revolution from the tyrant shaking ideals of America.

If Liberals want to be disillusioned, they will ignore this Marxist analysis of American class structure and charge forward, taxing everyone that has more money than the leisure lower class. Ultimately, we could all end up not only a proletariat from Marx’s demented dreams, but a starving serfdom in a medieval fiefdom.