Blithe Spirit

The founding fathers quoted John Locke (1632-1704) more than any other non-biblical writer. A pungent sample:

It cannot be supposed that they [free people] should intend, had they a power so to do, to give to any one, or more, an absolute arbitrary power over their persons and estates, and put a force into the magistrate’s hand to execute his unlimited will arbitrarily upon them.

Arbitrary the significant word.

This were to put themselves into a worse condition than the state of nature, wherein they had a liberty to defend their right against the injuries of others, and were upon equal terms of force to maintain it, whether invaded by a single man, or many in combination.

State of nature: before government.

Whereas by supposing they have given up themselves to the absolute arbitrary power and will of a legislator, they have disarmed themselves, and armed him, to make a…

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