Losing the Mandate of Heaven

The Mandate of Heaven (Tian ming) is the belief that the kings and emperors of China have been chosen to rule through the will of the supreme deity Heaven. The king remains in power only so long as he governs with virtue and, in this way, retains Heaven’s favor. A recurring narrative can be discerned in the history of kingship in China. The king at the beginning of every dynasty is thought to be most virtuous but as the succession passes through multiple generations, great-grandsons become less honorable, and thus less worthy, indulging themselves in alcohol-fueled excess and sexual affairs. When a ruler manages to lose the Mandate of Heaven, the dynasty falls into chaos, resulting in both socio-political and natural disasters. The longer the period of misrule lasts, the more horrific are the disasters, ranging from comets and floods, to the eventual overthrow of the ruler by the people.Wellesly College

…to secure these rights (life, liberty, pursuit of happiness), governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed… whenever any form of government becomes destructive to these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government… — Declaration of Independence

In light of the above, it’s worth noting:

…just 21% of voters nationwide believe that the federal government enjoys the consent of the governed.

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 61% disagree and say the government does not have the necessary consent. Eighteen percent (18%) of voters are not sure.

In his new book, In Search of Self-Governance, Scott Rasmussen observes that the American people are “united in the belief that our political system is broken, that politicians are corrupt, and that neither major political party has the answers.” He adds that “the gap between Americans who want to govern themselves and the politicians who want to rule over them may be as big today as the gap between the colonies and England during the 18th century.”

That period gave rise to this flag, among others


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