Over the years, I have used these articles to chronicle America's slide from a nation based on limited government, personal liberty, and economic opportunity to one based on an all-powerful central government, an apathetic public bought off with entitlements, and a regulated economy in free-fall to stagnation if not contraction.

The professional politicians, their casino capitalist cronies, and the media/academic alliance that justifies and promotes their seizure of power have triumphed.  The America we have known, the one we grew up in, has been replaced by Saul Alinsky's America, and no matter how many times we click our heels and say "I want to go home," you just can't get there from here.

The political "game" is rigged.  The two-headed Progressive machine will not be defeated at the rigged ballot box.  They have gerrymandered the districts and stacked the deck. And if that won't work, the import-a-voter campaign is designed to make sure of a permanent statist majority. The media, which shapes reality for the majority of those Americans who are not enthralled by reality shows and sports, either won't mention anyone who isn't part of the ruling apparatus or casts them as buffoons or lunatics wearing tinfoil hats.  Unless they bow the knee to the causes and beliefs of the Progressive juggernaut's PC pantheon, successful people are shown and perceived as greedy graspers out to steal the food from orphans and widows.

In the midst of darkness, the best any individual can do is generate all the light they can, for in the dark of night, even one single candle is bright.  There are more than enough pundits available to comment upon the growth of totalitarianism in the Land of the Free and the home of the Brave. I want to take this opportunity to speak about the need for us to be the light that leads the way.

Historically, there have been numerous experiences and transitions that have been called the Second American Revolution. The current triumph of the Progressive Party of Power more closely resembles a counter-revolution. Take the Declaration of Independence and substitute President Obama for "He" in the list of particulars, and anyone can gauge where we stand in the transition from limited government to tyranny.

When we recall that not only did this our founding document say, "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," it also says, "That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed."

Which leads us directly to, "That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of 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 (sic) their Safety and Happiness."

Philosophically, this train of logic leads us to the same unmistakable conclusion so many reached in 1860-61. Knowing the result of that and looking at the now much greater power of the central government, we are faced with a conundrum. How do liberty-loving patriots stand for what this nation has always stood for, limited government, personal liberty and economic opportunity- in the face of 24/7 surveillance, cradle-to-grave social engineering, and a military/industrial complex fueled by endless wars for peace? Are we whistling in the dark? Are we trying to convince ourselves that the fat can be pulled out of the fire?

I believe in American exceptionalism. I believe in the ability of our can-do nation to confront and overcome the challenges that the world throws in front of us.

When the world was owned by kings and crushed by empires, we rose up, threw off the monarchy, and established a new thing upon the earth—a republic operating on democratic principles. When our former colonial masters tried to keep us as a source of raw materials without the manufacturing base to change our continued economic dependence into the freedom of action we craved, we erected tariff walls to protect our infant industries and we let a thousand ideas bloom. When foreign powers infringed upon us, we made war to defend our rights returning to the peaceful pursuit of our national goals as soon as the fighting stopped.

In a record time, we rose from a struggling hodgepodge of varied interests and cultures into the greatest industrial, political, and military power this world has ever known. An American century looked like it was going to become a two-for and then, after achieving a landmark unity, after being attacked on 9-11, we stumbled.

A pre-emptive war shattered our unity, resulting in the election of Hope and Change. Empty rhetoric filled with the promise to fundamentally change America. Fast forward 7 years and we are almost there—a new America for new Americans. An America where the government can listen to and record everything a citizen says without a warrant and the person who tells us about it is a traitor. An America where the government's bureaucracy can take over the internet using regulations carrying the weight of law, since the elected legislature has surrendered their delegated power. An America where the so-called opposition party wins two off-year elections in a row by historic margins and then acts like it lost as an imperial president rules by decree.

This is the darkness that is descending upon us: an unlimited government, 360º personal surveillance, and economic regulation strangulation. So where is the light? Where is the one candle we can light?

The truth is, we really can't light it because if we could, someone else could blow it out. The only light that will dispel the darkness and lead the way is the only light that cannot be dimmed--the light of Jesus Christ.

Jesus said, "I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won't have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life." An old song spoke about that light: "This little light of mine, I'm gonna let it shine," admonishing us, "Hide it under a bushel? No! I'm gonna let it shine" and warning against allowing evil to extinguish what Jesus gave us, "Don't let Satan blow it out, I'm gonna let it shine"

A modern song expresses this truth in a contemporary way. "Just to know You and to make You known we lift Your name on high shine like the sun, make darkness run and hide."

So that's it In a world filled with evil, as we watch our precious birthright being stifled by central planning bean counters and their Progressive statist masters, we must allow Jesus to shine through us so that in this gathering evening, one candle can shine.

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