The Liberal Mind

The world lost a great thinker on Friday. Kenneth Minogue had a heart attack while on a trip to Ecuador. Mr. Minogue is new to me, but he taught “generations of students at the London School of Economics.” He was also the author of a book I just purchased “The Liberal Mind.”

What is his book about? Edwin Feulner gives us an insight into his ideas. Minogue “chastised the establishment elites who viewed humanity’s every challenge as an opportunity for government intervention.” This statement caught my attention; especially when he felt that there needed to be creative solutions to human need, not government bureaucracy. However, during a recent interview Minogue, who had viewed the church as a force to meet human need, felt that the church’s vitality was not as great as he had hoped. The government stepped into the void.

His other book that I plan on purchasing is “The Servile Mind: How Democracy Erodes the Moral Life.” In this book he explores “the remarkable fact that while democracy means a government accountable to the electorate, our rulers now make us accountable to them.” This too seems like an interesting topic. Especially in light of how our own government spies on its people and friends.

The reason I write about this today is because of an event that occurred in my neighborhood. Two houses away a family lost their home. During the two years that they did not make house payments, they trashed the house, and they allowed the grass and weeds to grow throughout the yard. It became an eyesore in the neighborhood. Several of my neighbors have talked about going over to the house and cleaning up the yard. This morning it happened. It was really exciting.

They started at 7am and worked until it was too hot. They cut down all the weeds, and hauled them all away. I was able to spend about an hour with the gang, but my delegate (my wife) stayed and worked until 9:30am. It was the neighborhood coming together to do something good. It wasn’t big government coming in and cleaning up the yard, it was people.

I really think that is how it should be. We retreat into our T.V.’s and computer games and forget about human connection and care. Big government is not the answer, unless you are a proponent of an Orwellian society. The answer is ordinary people helping ordinary people. Maybe I really am a Libertarian.

And that is my thought for the day!


2 thoughts on “The Liberal Mind

  1. “the remarkable fact that while democracy means a government accountable to the electorate, our rulers now make us accountable to them.” That illustrates the difference between a leader and a ruler, but at the end of the day, it’s always people who can make the difference. Real change can’t come from above (government, church, organization …), but from people themselves (mass, community…). Even in a non-democratic mechanism, any change from above would be coercion, thus a pseudo-change. We promote what we have consented to. People have to claim, and work on, what they want. The laws change accordingly; the latest ruling of same-sex marriage by the Supreme Court is a flagrant example. You’re right, Dr. Martin, the final answer is not big government, but people’s conscience.

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