America's Spirit of Enterprise Must Not Be Replaced By a Nanny State

Well, I had great fun reading Alexander Hamilton’s "Federalist Paper No. 11," especially toward the end of the paper, where he makes a statement regarding Europe:

“The superiority she has long maintained, has tempted her to plume herself as the mistress of the world, and to consider the rest of mankind as created for her benefit. Men, admired as profound philosophers, have, in direct terms, attributed to her inhabitants a physical superiority; and have gravely asserted, that all animals, and with them the human species, degenerate in America; that even dogs cease to bark, after having breathed a while in our atmosphere…. It belongs to us to vindicate the honor of the human race, and to teach that assuming brother moderation. Union will enable us to do it. Disunion will add another victim to his triumphs.”

This statement, once again, exhibits the vision of our Constitutional Founding Fathers and Publius; strength in numbers, success with unity. They envisioned a United States that could, with her richness, vastness, intellect, unsurpassed spirit of enterprise, and republican virtue compete with Europe and to do so with dignity and in a way that would, “vindicate the honor of the human race.”

Other points that I found to be of interest were regarding a strong and unified navy.

“The rights of neutrality will only be respected when they are defended by adequate power. A nation, despicable by its weakness, forfeits even the privilege of being neutral.”

This statement is relevant today and is applicable to our current situation regarding 9/11 and terrorism. It is, also, represented by human nature. Bullies only attack the weak. Other nations watch our administration and our country’s stance on defense. If they sense any leniency, or lack of response to attacks on American soil, which is “despicable by its weakness,” then we, as Americans, forfeit our privilege of being neutral. Peace is no longer an option for us if we do not exhibit and execute strength – strength politically (a Congress that thinks in terms of what is best for America and not facetiously), militarily (readiness and response), and financially (solvency). Strength, also, lies in our resources – our own oil and advances in new fuels.

It is best illustrated by Alexander Hamilton’s own words regarding unity and strength:

“The unequalled spirit of enterprise, which signalizes the genius of the American merchants and navigators, and which is in itself an inexhaustible mine of national wealth, would be stifled and lost; and poverty and disgrace would overspread a country, which, with wisdom, might make herself the admiration and envy of the world.”

As a final note of relevancy – there are many mentions of the phrase “spirit of enterprise” in the "Federalist Papers," in this case, “unequalled spirit of enterprise.” America was built on this spirit – a can-do, true grit American determination. The greatness of America will cease with the continuance of a “nanny state.” America was not built with her hand out. America was built with her hands at work.

God Bless.

Janine Turner is an actress and the founder and co-chairman of “Constituting America.” For more visit

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