Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The Lesson of Thanksgiving

I learned a valuable life-changing lesson one Thanksgiving, as profound and life-changing as the one the Plymouth colonist learned in 1623. You know, the colonial lesson that shaped the thinking of the founders of this country and the US Constitution. The one that made America the most successful experiment in self-governance and personal liberty in the history of the world. Yea, that America, the one communist and now with the help of Islamist, are determined to destroy. Not because theirs is so much better but simply envy and the despicable arrogance that stems from the subconscious knowledge that their way is inferior. The same concept that stimulates irrational thought so common in many crimes; "If I can't have it nobody will." Here is my lesson learned and how it relates to Plymouth in 1623.
As a small boy I suffered an incident of abuse by someone who would today have spent a long time in prison. I remember years later as a young man, being asked to pass the bread at Thanksgiving by this person. I remember going ballistic toward this person for no apparent reason and making everyone think I was the one who was nuts. I learned that only I was responsible for my actions and their consequences and that if I didn't accept that responsibility my life was just going to be a series of abject failures and incendiary incidents. So how does this relate to Plymouth ?
I'm sure you know the story of how the colony nearly starved to death the first winter and the noble Indians took pity on them and fed them and then come spring taught them how to raise corn and fish and hunt. The following autumn the colony decided to thank them and invited them to a feast. Me too, I was taught that in the government indoctrination program called public school as well. Nothing could be further from the truth.
You guessed it, when I started learning real history and not some spoon-fed pablum issued by the powers that be, I was outraged that I could have been so gullible and trusting for so long. I felt used and abused again. In 1620 Plymouth Plantation was founded with a system of communal property rights. Food and supplies were held in common and then distributed based on “equality” and “need” as determined by Plantation officials. People received the same rations whether or not they contributed to producing the food, and residents were forbidden from producing their own food. Here is the true story of Plymouth Colony written by the Governor of the colony, William Bradford 1590-1657.
The life-changing lesson they learned ? Communism does not work. They tried it and it didn't work so in 1622 they adopted a private property concept where each family was given a plot of land and responsible for raising their own food. By 1623 they had such an abundance they had a feast of thanks with the surplus. This is considered the first Thanksgiving. Yes they invited some Indians, they were still fairly new there and not seen as a serious threat by the Indians at that point.
If you would like to research this yourself, you can read Governor's Bradford diary and you will learn some interesting facts that you didn't learn in most institutes of higher learning. Here is an excerpt from the original contract colonist agreed to before embarking to Plymouth;

"3. The persons transported and the adventurers shall continue their joynt stock and partnership togeather, the space of 7. years, (excepte some unexpected impedimente doe cause the whole company to agree otherwise,) during which time, all profits and benifits that are gott by trade, traffick, trucking, working, fishing, or any other means of any person or persons, remaine still in the commone stock untill the division."

It shows that each person was an employee of the colony and that there was no private property. This is the part that failed and had to be changed to a Capitalist form of governance. 
I think it is fascinating how they identified the same problems inherent in communism as the cause of failure and found the same principles inherent in capitalism as the solution.
You can find the entire story along with letters between stakeholders here.........


1 comment: