24 November 2009

A Little Off Topic...

So, I admit I've been a little lax in my reading of the 1776.. but I have been reading more in the Eleanor Roosevelt biography and I came upon some stuff I thought was interesting and that I'd share.

So, a while back, Ritsumei, you and our Cousin were having a discussion on Facebook about politics and parties and party loyalty. Now, at the time, I didn't really have much to add to things, so I didn't. But a few days later, while reading about ER, I came across her views on the subject. It was too late to post on Facebook ('cuz I couldn't find the thread) but then I thought that this would be a good place to post it:

As she was originally sorting out her political opinions, ER felt that party loyalty was very important. However, as she became more involved politically (especially in getting women exercise their newly won sufferage), she departed from that philosophy and
"argued that voters of "the modern stamps" no longer adhere slavishly to their party's candidates. Although she agreed that women should enroll in the party that best represented their principles, issues of personal integrity, vision superior qualification should determine a person's vote: "Small minded people will tell you that but for party regularity in all things party organization would not exist, and that party government is necessary to our National institutions. This argument has ... been refuted a thousand times." Better government depends on "individual nominees." If our partisans "appear to us unworthy, then we have an even higher duty ... America must come first, not party (Eleanor Roosevelt Vol. 1; B.W.Cook, pg. 303-304)."


Ritsumei said...

I think that puts it very nicely: America first, not the party. I like it. I don't think that we'll ever really leave the party system behind as long as we have a political system because like minded people will band together to accomplish their goals and oppose other goals, thus creating parties. But America should ALWAYS come first, something that I think that most of the members of Congress have forgotten. My guess is that their voters will remind them after this whole health care mess.

Ritsumei said...

I was flipping through my copy of the Discourses of Brigham Young this evening, and discovered that it's got a section where the editor has collected some of the things he said about politics, and there was a couple in there on political parties. I don't think that he was impressed at all with parties, though the language is old and difficult in this section, and I'm unsure of his precise meaning.

"When the people's affections are interwoven with a republican government administered in all its purity, if the administrators act not in virtue and truth it is but natural that the people become disaffected with mal-administration, and divide and sub-divide into parties, until the body politic is shivered to pieces. 10:108"

Here's another he said about our government, though not so much on parties:

"It was the voice of the Lord inspiring all those worthy men... to form and adopt those wise and efficient measures which secured to themselves and succeeding generations, the blessings of a free and independent government. This government, so formed, has been blessed by the Almighty until she spreads her sails in every sea, and her power is felt in every land. 2:170"