Once upon a time, years ago, many years ago, there was a young man named Sam who moved into a large house. Some say he had no right to move into the house. Perhaps that is so; I don’t know. Regardless, he moved into the house.
Before he could take clean title, he had to evict a pesky guy with a British accent who was trying to claim the house as his own. Sam didn’t like the British guy bossing him around. It was a major battle, and indeed it looked dark for a while. They really duked it out. Amazingly, they would become the best of friends later in life.
There some other skirmishes undertaken over the early years. Sam needed to let folks know where they stood.
Sam took exceptional care of the house from the start. Now, he did have the advantage of free labor for a number of years. He argued with himself over the decency of forcing others to work for him. Eventually, the argument grew heated, and violence filled the house. Some residents complained that they should be free to run their rooms as they saw fit, and that forced labor was only part of that. Other residents insisted otherwise. After much bloodshed, the matter was settled and the practice ended.
Sam was a pretty good manager of his finances. Residents worked hard, built up the yard, fixed up the place. There was not much concern, for the most part, for folks to worry about what other residents did with their rooms in the house.
As time went on, Sam worked hard and developed the house into a real showcase. He took good care of the money entrusted to him, believed in paying his way, and was thrifty. There were some lean years to be sure. At one point, the garden dried up and dust blew all over the house. Folks were poor, too, but resourceful.
About 80 years ago, in another neighborhood, a bully named Adolph started bullying his neighbors around… even declaring ownership of their houses. Unfortunately, he had a real knack for persuasion, and many people went along with him. He would make promises, only to break them later. It became evident that someday Sam and Adolph were going to come to blows.
It was also evident, though some folks would forget this later, that there will always be bullies who rise up, and there must always be those who will rise up against them. The only talk a bully listens to is his own. It is very, very important to stay strong and in shape so that the bullies can be repelled, so that the weak can be protected. It’s hard for a weak man to protect other weak men.
So, Sam started doing pushups and sit-ups; then, he decided to build a really big gun in his basement. It was a top-secret project. Some of the folks living in the house didn’t even know about it. Sam had the smarts to welcome folks in for other houses who could contribute to the project. It was a difficult gun to build. Adolph was working on one too.
Adolph grew so bold that Sam’s former enemy with the British accent even came over to Sam’s house once, now that they were friends, and asked for some help. Adolph was getting out of hand. He was bent on stealing and cruelty and murder… horrendous deeds the whole town would come to know about later. Sam was iffy about it at first. Seems like part of him wanted to go help, and part of him had the belief that it is best to tend to one’s own business.
One thing Sam knew, and it pays for everyone to know… a bully can never be appeased.
Thankfully, though, a bully always understands big guns.
Wouldn’t you know, while all of this was going on, a guy named Hirohito from another neighborhood attacked some brave residents out on some property Sam had in a nearby lake. Time to fight.
Thankfully, Sam won the race to build the big old gun. Had it not worked, he would have had to fight a long drawn out, even more bloody fight. The whole town breathed easier without Adolph around and without Hirohito pushing his way around.
As time went on, Sam was quick to come to the defense of the needy. There were other fights in the town. Sometimes, he tied his own hands and didn’t pummel the bullies as he should have.
Something else happened along the way. You see, there was an original Homebuilder, and there were instructions for how Sam was to live. Really, the Homebuilder had built the whole town, indeed the whole universe and – again, indeed – the instructions held for folks everywhere. Over time, Sam forgot the Homebuilder. Some folks living in the house didn’t want to read the instructions, or even follow them. The house rules were thrown out. Chaos, slowly, ensued. Progressives started running things.
The house is not what it once was. There are fine folks living there still, but Sam has grown fat. He borrows money from his own residents, sometimes without their okay. It’s confusing because some of the folks are fine with it, but it is not as it was. It doesn’t work.
While always open, within reason, to folks moving in who were willing to work hard and pay their way, Sam has pretty much stopped locking the windows, and he leaves the door open to pretty much anyone. It is thought by some that this is compassionate. Sam, however, cannot afford to let just anyone in, since his checkbook is in shambles. It only makes matters worse.
Some of the new folks are freeloaders; some of the old-time residents have taken to freeloading too. Some who call Sam out on this are called intolerant, a magical word to many of the progressives. Progressives have other magical words, too, like racist and homophobe. Many times, they sprinkle their magic words around the house, thinking all will be well. Alas.
Part II, upcoming.