by Joel Tscherne | 2/15/2010 02:14:00 PM
Every year, a member of the United States Senate reads Washington's Farewell Address on Presidents Day. Yet, it seems obvious that nobody really listens to it, given their willingness to ignore it.
Early in the address, Washington argued the importance of unity to the country. He believed that the main purpose of disunity is to gain power and take control. He particularly warns about obstructionists who try to weaken government in the name of the people as a way to place power into the hands of unjust leaders.
Of course, Washington also discusses the dangers of political parties. Factions consistently try to gain power instead of promoting liberty. He disdains the distractions from governing caused by political parties. I can't help thinking that this must be a tough section to repeat today.
Political leaders love to state the importance of listening to the founding fathers, but they invariably ignore opinions that don't jibe with their desire for power.