“You have the luxury of not knowing what I know…”
–Colonel Nathan R. Jessep, in the movie “A Few Good Men”
I once sold guns for a living. Before I started there, I thought I knew a lot about firearms, having hunted since I was old enough to hold one and not shoot everyone around me. But the schooling I received made me realize how little I knew and, along with friendships, I left the store and shooting range with a deep appreciation of the greatness of guns. They are the true equalizer among men.
Before I started the Leadership Program of the Rockies (LPR) — a nine-month program dedicated to developing, strengthening, training, and equipping emerging leaders to reach new heights in public policy and the political process, I thought I knew about government, history, and economics. I recently graduated from LPR, and I can tell you there is so much to know that a few lifetimes could be spent mastering the Constitution alone. I can’t recommend this program enough. If you don’t have one in your state, contact Shari Williams to make it happen.
Knowledge can bring a burden. While I don’t claim mastery on the topics we covered during the program, to now have the knowledge of the brilliance of our Founders, what the United States endured through our history to get to where we are, and yet see how far we’ve strayed from our core principles, it’s hard not to have a fair amount of sadness and resignation about our future. Watching people go about their business — families at the swimming pool, business travelers trying to catch an earlier flight, friends kicking back with beer and BBQ — and not know or care how easily this “experiment” could fail and what will happen to us and the rest of the world if it does, is difficult.
What can we do?
First, we can’t boil the ocean. We must learn from the Jewish saying, “It is not your responsibility to finish the work of perfecting the world, but you are not free to desist from it.” Therefore, we must direct our talents and resources appropriately – strictly adhering to our own, personal law of opportunity cost. For those who don’t know, opportunity cost means if you’re spending resources such as money or time on one thing, you can’t direct the same money or time toward another thing. If you purchase a new car, you can’t put that same money in an investment account. Or if you watch all eight seasons of Game of Thrones, that time can’t be spent learning piano. Everything is a trade-off. I once heard Tai Lopez, a self-made millionaire, say, “Everyone knows what opportunity cost is, but no one lives by it.” Amen to that.
Along those lines, while I will continue to fight for America, I will be directing my resources outside of the Clash Daily family. This column never took that much of my time, but it did require careful thought, preparation, and research to bring you what I hope was thoughtful commentary on history, economics, and current events.
My first column at ClashDaily was in July, 2014 so it’s a nice bookend that my last will land on or near the same time. I consider Christmas to be the great micro holiday to connect with your families and friends, and July 4 to be the great macro holiday to honor and commemorate the greatness of America. For the good the United States has done the world, every person on this planet should celebrate this holiday.
Thank you to Doug Giles for the opportunity to write for him and his great site full of patriots. Doug, I hope I did right by you.
Thank you to Karen and Wes Walker, my editors (and Steve Pauwels before them), for enduring my soapbox.
Thank you to all Clashers; I hope you enjoyed reading my work as much as I did writing. Keep in touch: @CummingsAmerica. May God continue to bless the USA!