Sunday, September 02, 2007

What Would the Founders Do?

What Would the Founders Do?: Our Questions, Their Answers, Richard Brookhiser.

What would our founding fathers do about the many problems and issues facing our country today? How would they deal with weapons of mass destruction, education, social security? What might be their stance on unwed mothers, intelligent design, immigration? Historian Richard Brookhiser addresses these issues and many more facing our political leaders and our country today from the persepctive of our country's founders. If you're looking for concrete yes and no answers to most of the questions, you won't get them. In What Would the Founders Do? Brookhiser uses their writings and their lives to both speculate what they might do and think about today's problems. In so doing, he highlights the contentiousness and the brilliance of our founding fathers in a way that's entertaining and thought-provoking. In the last pages of the book, Brookhiser sums up by saying, in part, "Contention is as much a part of their legacy as their principles. It fills our public space, it fills our minds. Mere ambition generates conflict in times of peace and prosperity, and the world provides enough real problems to give us serious things to quarrel about....What we can take away from the founders, whether we are honoring the letter of their law, or improvising madly, as they sometimes did, is a style of thought, a way of working, a stance." In other words, our founding fathers would likely debate many of today's issues as fiercely as we do ourselves.

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