Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness, Version 4.0 (Paragon Issues in Philosophy)

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9781557788863: Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness, Version 4.0 (Paragon Issues in Philosophy)
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This book explains the evolution of the core principles of political philosphy contained in the US Constituion and how, in the quest for power and wealth, they have been circumvented and misapplied by those who followed after the founders. The resulting dysfunctional, bloated, and debt-ridden system can be fixed by reapplying principles that prevent special interests from hijacking government. The final chapter suggests changes that would eliminate numerous conflicts of interest and create checks and balances that would make the system more efficient and functional.
With a focus on the effects of human nature and economic motives on government, this books explains how the U.S. has drifted far from its original mission statement of "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness." Using the analogy of government as the social operating system to a computer operating system, Anderson shows how various "viruses" have infected government and society, overloading the system and brought it to near collapse. Anderson views the U.S. Constitution as "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness, Version 3.0" and promotes an "upgrade" to version 4.0 to take into account the historical, technological, and global developments that occurred since the founding.
How did special interests on the right and the left wrest control of government from the citizens? How did a free Republic turn into an Empire of force? How do the government and the special interests combine forces to oppress the citizens they are supposed to serve?
Five key principles of government are discussed in Part 1: Protection, Subsidiarity, Separation of Powers, Transparency, and the (conditional) Right to Secede. Part 2 delves into discussion of reforms of Congress, Taxes, and Welfare necessary to make government run effectively.

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Book Description:

Congress is in a position much like the programmers of a computer operating system that seek to increase the functionality of the system and to ward off attacks from viruses. However, not only have they passed laws that take away from the citizen's abilities to pursue life, liberty, and happiness, they have also introduced various viruses that threaten the existence of the entire system. This book describes how we can eliminate these viruses infecting the system and update the U.S. government to "version 4.0," allowing U.S. citizens to pursue life, liberty, and happiness, thereby producing a solid foundation for a strong and durable society in which all can freely prosper.

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Praise for the Book
"Smart, balanced, and wonderfully readable, Life Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness Version 4.0 is the perfect antidote to the malaise that seems to be encompassing vast segments of American society. Mired in two wars, and experiencing the most severe economic contraction since the depression, the United States seems to have lost its way. To many, the basic principles and beliefs that made the United States a great country are no longer applicable in today's world. Gordon Anderson brings much needed balance to the debate over the changes that must occur if the United States is to regain its footing. In doing so, he touches on a series of fundamental issues that have too often been the subject of unhelpful polemics. No axe to grind - just a world-class researcher providing insights to some of the most vexing issues of the day. A fascinating perspective developed with care and judgment."
--Robert Looney, Professor, Naval Postgraduate School

"This book does a wonderful job explaining how our evolving political-economic system has moved in a direction not intended by the framers of the U.S. Constitution. The primary undermining of our political system is attributed to several factors: judicial activism, erosion of checks and balances, a tendency for our Federal government and institutions in general to become more centralized, deviating from the goal of subsidiarity, and the deleterious economic impact caused by rent-seeking lobbyists."
--Gary Quinlivan, Dean, Alex G. McKenna School of Business, Economics, and Government, St. Vincent College

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