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This article appears in the March 10, 2017 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.

Trump, Lincoln,
and LaRouche’s Four Laws

by Robert Ingraham

[Print version of this article]

March 5, 2017—The speech which President Donald Trump delivered to a joint session of Congress on Feb. 28, contained the following remarks:

It’s been a long time since we had fair trade. The first Republican President, Abraham Lincoln, warned that the “abandonment of the protective policy by the American government… will produce want and ruin among our people.” Lincoln was right—and it’s time we heeded his advice and his words...

In nine years, the United States will celebrate the 250th anniversary of our founding—250 years since the day we declared our independence. It will be one of the great milestones in the history of the world. But what will America look like as we reach our 250th year? What kind of country will we leave for our children?

On our 100th anniversary, in 1876, citizens from across our nation came to Philadelphia to celebrate America’s centennial. At that celebration, the country’s builders and artists and inventors showed off their wonderful creations. Alexander Graham Bell displayed his telephone for the first time. Remington unveiled the first typewriter. An early attempt was made at electric light. Thomas Edison showed an automatic telegraph and an electric pen. Imagine the wonders our country could know in America’s 250th year.

Think of the marvels we can achieve if we simply set free the dreams of our people. Cures to the illnesses that have always plagued us are not too much to hope. American footprints on distant worlds are not too big a dream. Millions lifted from welfare to work is not too much to expect. And streets where mothers are safe from fear, schools where children learn in peace, and jobs where Americans prosper and grow are not too much to ask.

When we have all of this, we will have made America greater than ever before—for all Americans. This is our vision. This is our mission. But we can only get there together. We are one people, with one destiny. We all bleed the same blood. We all salute the same great American flag. And we all are made by the same God.

When we fulfill this vision, when we celebrate our 250 years of glorious freedom, we will look back on tonight as when this new chapter of American Greatness began. The time for small thinking is over. The time for trivial fights is behind us. We just need the courage to share the dreams that fill our hearts, the bravery to express the hopes that stir our souls, and the confidence to turn those hopes and those dreams into action...

True love for our people requires us to find common ground, to advance the common good, and to cooperate on behalf of every American child who deserves a much brighter future...

From now on, America will be empowered by our aspirations, not burdened by our fears; inspired by the future, not bound by the failures of the past; and guided by our vision, not blinded by our doubts.”

I. The Axiomatic Approach to Moving Forward

How is this vision—so eloquently enunciated by President Trump—to be actualized? What is the pathway we must take if we are to successfully return the United States of America to the “Temple of Hope and Beacon of Liberty” it must once again become, by its 250th birthday in 2026? The challenge is manifest; the battle-plan, for many, remains unclear.

In 2014, Lyndon LaRouche issued the three page document The Four New Laws to Save the U.S.A. Now! That document, whose Four Laws are grounded in the principles of Public Credit and National Banking, as promulgated by Alexander Hamilton, remains, starkly, as the only viable solution to the banking and economic crisis facing the United States and the world today. It defines the only possible strategy for fulfilling President Trump’s promise to create a “new chapter of American Greatness”—and in the process to lay the basis, in cooperation with friendly foreign nations, for the beginning of a new global economic and scientific Renaissance.

The paramount feature of those Four Laws is to be found in the concluding paragraphs of the document. It is here that LaRouche defines the basis for all economic policy. He says,

The knowable measure, in principle, of the difference between man and all among the lower forms of life, is found in what has been usefully regarded as the naturally upward evolution of the human species, in contrast to all other known categories of living species. The standard of measurement of these compared relationships, is that mankind is enabled to evolve upward, and that categorically, by those voluntarily noëtic powers of the human individual will.

Mankind’s progress, as measured rather simply as a species, is expressed typically in the rising power of the principle of human life, over the abilities of animal life generally, and relatively absolute superiority over the powers of non-living processes to achieve within mankind’s willful intervention to that intended effect. Progress exists so only under a continuing, progressive increase of the productive and related powers of the human species. That progress defines the absolute distinction of the human species from all others presently known to us. A government of people based on a policy of ‘zero-population growth and per capita standard of human life’ is a moral, and practical abomination.

It is in this section of the Four Laws that LaRouche defines a scientifically precise notion of human productivity. LaRouche’s words echo the intent of the Preamble of the United States Constitution as well as the sentiment expressed in Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address. It is in the noëtic creative distinction between members of the human species and all of the lower beasts that proper economic policy must be grounded.

Real economics, economics as LaRouche defines it “as the naturally upward evolution of the human species” is not about money or profits, as those terms are usually understood. Rather, it is the purpose of a Hamiltonian system, anchored by the principles of Public Credit and National Banking, to establish a sound basis whereby an escalating increase in human and national productivity might be realized.

When the Gouverneur Morris-authored Preamble speaks of “We the People...,” or when Lincoln speaks of a government “of the people, by the people, and for the people...,” the profundity of that idea-content must not be obscured by maudlin romanticism. Rather, it represents an intention—to marshal the power of government to advance the opportunities, skills, talents and productivity of the citizens of the nation, to aid in the emergence of a national culture grounded in happiness.

II. Lincoln and Grant

If one examines the entire sweep of Abraham Lincoln’s policy initiatives—from the protectionist tariff policies to the Greenback national credit policy; from the Emancipation Proclamation to the Homestead Act; from the Transcontinental Railroad to the Land-Grant Colleges Act—all of these are aimed at accomplishing a powerful improvement in the physical economy of the nation, accompanied by an increase in productivity and opportunity for the all of the citizenry. Neither de jure slavery nor de facto economic servitude were to be tolerated. As LaRouche puts it, the outlook was grounded “in the rising power of the principle of human life, over the abilities of animal life generally.”

The White House Historical Association
Grant and Lincoln. Excerpt of the White House copy of the lost 1868 painting. Sherman, Grant, Lincoln, and Porter aboard the River Queen on March 27th & March 28th, 1865.

Lincoln launched an economic revolution, and he quickly found himself at war with entrenched monied interests, particularly with leading Wall Street banking houses and the financial institutions of the British Empire’s City of London. Their system was a money system; his was a physical economic system. Beginning in 1861, and continuing over the next four years, the New York Associated Banks, and their leader James Gallatin, relentlessly endeavored to destroy the Lincoln Presidency, demanding that President Lincoln’s efforts to impose national sovereignty over economic and banking policy be killed.

The outlook of those 19th century financiers is no different than what we hear today, emanating from Wall Street apologists who denounce Glass-Steagall legislation as “government interference” into private banking matters and deleterious to their designs to accumulate speculative financial profits. Lincoln, like Hamilton, comprehended the power and responsibility of government to regulate, and even promulgate, policy related to banking and finance, so as to secure a Credit Policy that achieves the greatest reward for the common good. Such an approach is the only one that honors the Oath of Office to uphold the United States Constitution.

In truth, only those policies—economic or otherwise—which stem from an intention to “establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity” can be rightfully considered lawful, either in the strict sense of U.S. Constitutional Law, or from the vantage point of a natural law which recognizes the unique nature of the human species.

It is also within this intention to promote the General Welfare and to secure a positive future for the children of the United States of America, that President Trump’s praiseworthy vow to “stop the drugs from pouring into our country and poisoning our youth” must be seen. This is a sacred promise to yet unborn generations, and many nations will be eager to work with the United States in such an effort.

1876: Philadelphia Centennial Exposition

President Trump’s extended reference to the 1876 Philadelphia Centennial Exposition is truly heartening. Implied, but unstated in his remarks, is the reality that the industrial and scientific wonders that were there displayed, were all made possible through the intention and effects of the Lincoln Economic Revolution. Also left unsaid in the President’s remarks was that the Exposition was organized under the Presidency of Ulysses Grant, who attended the opening ceremony and flipped the switch to turn on the Corliss Steam Engine, then the most powerful engine in the world.

Library of Congress
The Philadelphia Centennial Exposition

Grant’s Presidency was characterized by an ironclad commitment to secure equal rights for Black Americans. It was Grant who initiated military campaigns against the Ku Klux Klan; it was Grant who defended black voting rights with U.S. troops; and it was Grant who defended and supported the creation of educational institutions for freed slaves. This included his use of troops to defend the facilities of the Freedmen’s Bureau, an organization created by Abraham Lincoln; and his later support for the black universities which were being established.

This is the same Grant who, beginning in 1869, put an end to the wars of extermination against American Indians. For Grant, as with Lincoln, celebrating the triumphs of American science and inventiveness was not separate from the commitment to human equality and justice. For Lincoln, economic and financial policies were never allowed to serve the financial elites—every policy, every initiative must have as its intention to “secure the blessings of liberty” to every one of the nation’s citizens, as well to secure a better world—a better future—for the nation’s posterity.

Today, the policies of Glass-Steagall, national banking, public credit, and a science policy centered on fusion energy and space exploration will—as LaRouche defines in his Four Laws—fulfill exactly that mission, as defined in the Lincoln and Grant Presidencies from 1861 to 1877. A financial system which generates speculative mega-profits, while little is produced in terms of tangible physical wealth, leaving millions to languish in poverty, is not the legacy of our greatest President. A nation’s credit is a bounty; it should not be squandered on frivolous things, but put to work building for the future.

III. Partners

Abraham Lincoln stated, in a speech shortly before his 1861 inauguration, that the American Declaration of Independence “gave liberty not alone to the people of this country, but hope to all the world, for all future time.”

It should come as no surprise that both Lincoln and Grant approached foreign powers from the standpoint of winning friends based on the Principles embedded in that Declaration. From Lincoln’s friendly initiatives with Russia, Japan and Benito Juarez’s Mexico, to Grant’s world tour of 1877-1879, the United States offered a hand of friendship to every nation in the world, an offer which stemmed from a genuine desire to work with other nations in the great task of uplifting civilization through science, industry and the eradication of human impoverishment.

Today, in 2017, the tables have turned, and it is now the nations of China and Russia, together with their partners, who are offering a helping hand to the United States—to aid the United States in recovering from the 16 years of murderous geopolitics unleashed by George W. Bush and Barack Obama, to join with them in building a great world-wide economic and scientific Renaissance.

The Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation (BRF) will be held in Beijing from May 14 to 15 of this year. Already, more than 65 countries, encompassing more than half of the human race, have joined this initiative. More than 20 heads of state, including President Xi Jinping of China, President Vladimir Putin of Russia, and President Rodrigo Duterte of the Philippines will be in attendance. This conference is a watershed event in the ongoing work of the Chinese One Belt-One Road policy, a policy which is redefining relations among nation states away from imperial geopolitical conflict toward cooperation and major economic development projects.

President Trump should attend the May Conference in Beijing. Were Lincoln and Grant alive today, they would not hesitate. The world today does not need more wars. Great economic projects and great scientific challenges —the type of challenges which pull nations together as partners and friends —is the required future.

Speaking to an audience in New York City on February 4, 2017, Helga Zepp-LaRouche declaimed,

And I think if we can convince the United States with the Trump administration to cooperate with China on the New Silk Road, I am safe on the prediction that Mr. Trump will not be only a great American President, but if he can mobilize his country to join hands with China right now, he will go into history as one of the towering giants of all of universal history.

The operative word in Mrs. LaRouche’s statement is “if.” It is a word pregnant with potential, but it is not yet realized. America’s 250th birthday is nine years away. As President Trump asked, “But what will America look like as we reach our 250th year? What kind of country will we leave for our children?” The answer is right in front of us. The still-living minds of Abraham Lincoln and Alexander Hamilton, together with the economic principles defined by Lyndon LaRouche in his Four Laws, offer the path that will get us to that promised great future.

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