20 Unheeded Warnings in Washington’s Farewell Address
President George Washington
- Be vigilant, people will seek to use the government for selfish ends.
- Avoid overgrown military establishments; they are hostile to liberty.
- Prevent all obstructions to the execution of the laws.
- Control bureaucracies; make sure they all work together.
- Avoid political parties; they will cause divisive factions and unscrupulous men will use them to undermine the government.
- Give allegiance to the Constitution; improve it as necessary.
- Do not alter the Constitution lightly, or based on hypothesis; apply the experience applied when it was created.
- Be suspicious of administrators; they may serve themselves rather than the people.
- Watch for consolidation of power in any department of government.
- Preserve existing checks and balances and add more where power needs to be checked.
- Religion and morality are essential to create the virtue necessary to preserve the ion.
- Promote widespread education; democracy requires literate citizens that understand the system of governance and take responsibility for themselves.
- Avoid debt, and immediately discharge any debt created by war.
- Taxes are unpleasant; government spending should be candidly conducted.
- Cultivate peace and justice toward all nations.
- Avoid alliances and maintain neutrality among nations.
- Avoid dependency; a weak state that allies with a stronger state will become its servant.
- Real patriots will resist intrigues, while dupes will surrender to interests.
- In trade, give no nation a favored nation status.
- Be guided by principles, not interests.
The truly inspired mind of George Washington warns us to be careful of many of the issues we currently face as a direct result to not heeding his warnings. If we want to make this country Great Again, we need to institute and revitalize these foundational principles.