Saturday, April 28, 2007

S.C.'s Governor

South Carolina's governor is providing the keynote for lunch today.

He spoke on the spirit of the founding revolutionaries, who banded together make a positive change in their country, without waiting for instructions or leadership from the government. They believed and codified that the individual is the sole repository of power in our political system, and any portion of government has legitimacy only so far as the people have consented to it.

The response to Hurricane Katrina illustrates how far we have consented. Where do people turn when we feel threatened? "Too often, it's the government."

He references Thomas Friedman's The World is Flat and says that for the first time in recorded history, a kid here in Raleigh is directly competing with a kid in Shanghai, Dublin, or another foreign location. We aren't tied to geography like we always were. This is a world completely unimaginable to our grandfathers or even our fathers. David McCollough, the author of 1776, said the most pivotal time in America's history was not 1776 but 2000-2005.

Sanford says that education is the great frontier of the conservative movement. I didn't catch the rest in my notes -- it was a passing comment -- but I think he's right, and not just in the institutional sense of what do we do with the schools. Conservatives have to educate the electorate on why this principles are so important. There is a lot of education pouring through the screens of the main stream media, and we need to get the canoe moving against the current.

"Wherever you are and how you'd like to make a difference, please don't forget the small things," Sanford said. "The name of the game is trying to make a difference by keeping the promises you made to get in there."

Warfare has casualties, he said, and conservatives are in a battle. We need to be ready to lose if necessary to get the message out and stand on principles.

"Be of courage and be willing to take risks," he said. "Winston Churchill said, 'Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm'."

"Look for ways to be happy warriors," the governor said. The Biblical parable of the talents, he reminded, is "not about what we do best, but what we do with what we have."

"Remember it's a movement, not a transaction," he said.


UPDATE: Added more notes to the original posting.



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