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Declaration of Independence, St. Thomas, St. Robert

Started by Kephapaulos, July 26, 2016, 11:33:01 PM

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Kephapaulos

Was the Declaration of Independence actually influenced by actual teachings of St. Thomas Aquinas and St. Robert Bellarmine concerning government? Or were their teachings taken out of context?

Geremia

July 27, 2016, 09:55:40 AM #1 Last Edit: July 27, 2016, 09:58:22 AM by Geremia
Indirectly

The economist Jesús Huerta de Soto, who specializes in Spanish scholasticism, said (@17:54), speaking of the Spanish Jesuit scholastic and Thomist Fr. Juan de Mariana (1536-1634) (source):
Quote from: Jesús Huerta de SotoBut [Fr. Juan de] Mariana insists on another very important idea. He says natural law is vastly superior to the power of each king or ruler. This is an essential idea that is still perfectly applicable today. I believe that we must be aware of and very proud of the fact that when Thomas Jefferson, the founding father of the United States, was considering whether or not to rise up against the king of England, in order to give encouragement to Madison and the rest of the founding fathers of the great American homeland, he says to them: "You only have to read one book: The History of Spain by Fr. Juan de Mariana." And, in fact, Madison even sent him a copy of the book [the "12mo" or duodecimo version of vol. 2; here's a scan of Madison's copy on Internet Archive], because it is a history of Spain written from the perspective of freedom, unmasking the tyrants.
Also, Jefferson might have read Hobbes's Leviathon, which has a chapter entitled "Cardinal Bellarmines Books De Summo Pontifice Considered."

Kephapaulos

I remember reading the part in Right and Reason about government by Fr. Austin Fagothey, S.J. as well as an article by Dr. Correa de Oliveira about authority. I seemed to gather from each reading the notion that authority comes from the people or us vested in a ruler by the authority. I had thought that authority came from God directly. Were Fr. Fagothey and Dr. Correa de Oliveira simply in error on that point then?

Geremia


Quote from: Kephapaulos on July 28, 2016, 01:42:18 PMI had thought that authority came from God directly.
See Pope Leo XIII's encyclical "On the Origin of Civil Power," Diuturnum.

This is the conclusion of that encyclical:

Quote from: Rom. 13:1,4Let every soul be subject to higher powers, for there is not power [authority] but of God. And those that are [princes], of God are ordained. ... For he [a prince] is God's minister unto thee for good. ...
Princes get their authority from God, even if they are elected. It's similar to how cardinals elect a Pope (and whoever they validly elect is whom the Holy Ghost chooses to be Pope), but he gets his authority directly from God, not from the electors.

PerEvangelicaDicta

Whether clergy or secular, we sure do seem to get the government we deserve.

Geremia

Quote from: Geremia on July 27, 2016, 09:55:40 AMAlso, Jefferson might have read Hobbes's Leviathon, which has a chapter entitled "Cardinal Bellarmines Books De Summo Pontifice Considered."
ted to this is: "Catholic Sources and the Declaration of Independence" by Rev. John C. Rager, S.T.D.
He lists, side-by-side, the parallels between the Declaration and St. Robert's and St. Thomas's works.

Kephapaulos

October 12, 2016, 01:56:57 PM #6 Last Edit: October 12, 2016, 02:01:01 PM by Kephapaulos
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YxOa25hNU1s

This was a good listen for the topic of this thread. It is a talk by Dr. Jeffrey Bonds on the principles of James Madison and about two of The Federalist Papers. The concepts of liberty and justice on which the United States and its government are based are indeed erroneous. No wonder we see what we see today from the current presidential election to the individual U.S. citizen.

Geremia

October 16, 2016, 03:26:12 PM #7 Last Edit: October 16, 2016, 03:28:26 PM by Geremia
Quote from: Kephapaulos on October 12, 2016, 01:56:57 PMhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YxOa25hNU1s

This was a good listen for the topic of this thread. It is a talk by Dr. Jeffrey Bonds on the principles of James Madison and about two of The Federalist Papers. The concepts of liberty and justice on which the United States and its government are based are indeed erroneous. No wonder we see what we see today from the current presidential election to the individual U.S. citizen.
Very good talk
Thanks for posting
I agree with him that Pope Leo XIII's Libertas is a great encyclical "on political philosophy"; but there are others in "the past 500 years" (cf. the "Popes Against Modern Errors" encyclicals).
Yes, the U.S.'s "Founding Fathers" were heavily influenced by French Revolution, "Enlightenment," Masonic ideas.

Constitutional Flaws

The Bill of Rights (1791) was modeled off the French Revolution's Déclaration des droits de l'homme et du citoyen (1789), and Thomas Jefferson influenced both. Two major defects in them are:
 
 1. religious indifferentism (that all beliefs are equal under the law):
QuoteDéclaration des droits Article X:
No one may be disturbed for his opinions, even religious ones, provided that their manifestation does not trouble the public order established by the law.
There are people (e.g., Muslims) who believe killing infidels is a virtue. Why should such a Muslim not "be disturbed for his opinions," even though the "manifestation" of his beliefs does indeed "trouble the public order established by the law"?
 
 2. freedom of press:
QuoteDéclaration des droits Article XI:
The free communication of [true and false!*] thoughts and opinions is one of the most precious rights of man: any citizen thus may speak, write, print freely, except to respond to the abuse of this liberty,** in the cases determined by the law.
*Why should one have the freedom to spread falsehoods and lies?
 **"[R]espond[ing] to the abuse of this liberty" is exactly what anyone who criticizes the dictatorship of the mainstream media does, yet this Article says they should be silenced! The Liberal press, lead by the Freemasonic philosophes (revolutionary French philosophers like Voltaire), is what instigated the French Revolution in the first place.
 
 These Articles X and XI are combined in the U.S.'s 1st Amendment:
QuoteU.S. Constitution's 1st Amendment
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, ...

These documents are far more tyrannical and revolutionary than the kings and queens (e.g., King Louis XVI and Queen Marie-Antoinette, who the French Revolution guillotined) supposedly were. Yes, there are some good parts of these documents (like real natural rights, etc.), but religious indifferentism (which says beliefs don't matter) and freedom of press (which gives way to a dictatorship of the mainstream media, Hollywood, textbook publishers, et al., who know beliefs do matter and yet inculcate falsehoods) is the "drop of poison in the well."

Geremia

October 17, 2016, 09:00:53 AM #8 Last Edit: October 17, 2016, 09:03:34 AM by Geremia
Madison et al. were clearly deists/materialists, influenced by Newton in their idea of "justice" as a "balancing of (vector) forces" between opposing "factions;" the more opposing "factions," the more balanced ("just") the country will be. They think citizens are like molecules in an ideal gas! Improving the system by statistical analysis, not the perfection of the citizens, is their solution. Like Modernists, they used the terms "justice," "virtue," et al. in a completely different sense than we're used to. Dr. Bond insisted these Masons do not see politics as the art which helps perfect man but as the art of using man's passions and corrupted nature for their own gain (viz., treating citizens as animals to be exploited). His analogy to parents who placate their children instead of disciplining them describes American parenting and politics quite well. Dr. Bond also mentioned that they consider the sole purpose of government to be protecting one's property (maintenance of a "naughty peace" between believers and heretics as the Original Rheims commentary on Mt. 10:34 / Lk. 12:51 so accurately puts it), an idea upon which Marx would build.

Geremia

November 12, 2016, 11:13:35 PM #9 Last Edit: November 12, 2016, 11:15:44 PM by Geremia
St. Thomas's mature view on the best form of government (ordination principum):
Summa Theologica I-II q. 105 a. 1 ("Whether the Old Law enjoined fitting precepts concerning rulers?") c.:
Quote... Unde optima ordinatio principum est in aliqua civitate vel regno, in qua unus praeficitur secundum virtutem qui omnibus praesit; et sub ipso sunt aliqui principantes secundum virtutem; et tamen talis principatus ad omnes pertinet, tum quia ex omnibus eligi possunt, tum quia etiam ab omnibus eliguntur. Talis enim est optima politia, bene commixta ex regno, inquantum unus praeest; et aristocratia, inquantum multi principantur secundum virtutem; et ex democratia, idest potestate populi, inquantum ex popularibus possunt eligi principes, et ad populum pertinet electio principum.
Exactly what St. Robert says in his De Romano Pontifice "Chapter III: That Monarchy Mixed with Aristocracy and Democracy, Should be More Useful in this Life," after showing that simple monarchy is best.

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