I love America.

I love the spacious skies. I love the amber waves of grain, the
purple mountains’ majesties and the fruited plains. But what I love most
about America is the God-breathed revolutionary spirit that led its
founders to risk everything in a desperate fight for freedom and a noble
effort to write the greatest Constitution the world has ever known.

But something dreadful has happened to that spirit. It’s gone. Oh,
there’s a small remnant of people who still have it, understand it and
live by it. But, apparently, the vast majority of Americans are clueless
about it. They have no sense of history. They have no connection with
their revolutionary past. They have no idea of how blessed they are to
live with the fleeting legacy of freedom they inherited from George
Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison and our other forefathers
who staked their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honor in a quest
for liberty.

Americans have grown fat and lazy, content with their material
blessings and ignorant of their far more important endowment of freedom.

It’s enough to make you sick.

Oh, sure, Americans have lots of scapegoats for their ignorance.
They’ve been deliberately dumbed down for 30 or more years by government
schools determined to turn them into mindless robots. They have been the
victims of media propaganda designed to deceive them and lead them
astray. And for a generation or more they have been seduced by
government plans to instill in them an ever-greater sense of dependency.

But those are excuses. The truth is out there. It’s more readily
available to Americans who choose to seek it out than any other people
in history. Americans are just too busy, blind or comfortable to bother
searching for it. Most don’t even comprehend the way they are being
manipulated — or just don’t care. In other words, ultimately, they have
no one to blame but themselves.

As an example of what I’m talking about, take the latest polls
conducted after the release of the Starr report. Most Americans say
President Clinton is doing a good job and should not resign or be
impeached. A CNN/Gallup poll released the day the report went public on
the Internet placed the president’s job approval rating at 62 percent,
about where it was before the report was released. More than half, 58
percent, said Congress should vote to censure the president for behavior
that has eroded the public’s respect for his ethics and truthfulness —
a thoroughly meaningless gesture, a slap on the wrist with no
consequences, the kind of punishment Bill Clinton awaits more eagerly
than the next class of White House interns.

Almost 60 percent of those polled said they thought Clinton was fit
to be president. By what standard? That’s the trouble. Americans have no
standards — no unchangeable yardsticks by which they measure right and
wrong, truth from fiction.

Now, I don’t put much stock in public opinion surveys. They are often
conducted by the same corporate media interests whose agenda is
inextricably tied to bigger and more intrusive government. Nevertheless,
these surveys are at least an indication that our nation is in grave

What do they tell us?

We’ve lost our moorings — just as surely as Bill Clinton has.
America is morally, politically, intellectually, spiritually adrift.
There are no anchors aboard. No compasses. The USS America is at the
mercy of the winds and currents, and most on board don’t care. As long
as the crew is serving them fine food and entertaining them, the
passengers don’t give a second thought to their fate or their ultimate

In a way, Americans are getting just what they deserve. Their choice
of leaders reflects their own inadequacies and shortcomings — their own

No wonder they look at Bill Clinton without judgment. To hold him
accountable would mean holding themselves to a standard of
accountability. They like looking up to see a leader who is every bit as
dysfunctional, soulless and lost as themselves. It’s comforting, in a
perverse way.

And psychic and material comfort is the only standard by which
Americans today measure their lives, their liberty and their pursuit of
happiness. It’s not an easy observation or admission to make, my fellow
Americans. But somebody has to say it.

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