"What's up with all these hicks sending bricks to us? Xenophobic assholes." said Jonathan Bullwort, the most obviously bored of all the three, lounging in the mail center whilst processing the odds and ends. As the whir of letterhead sorters and racks of mail rolled by to their pre-sorted destinations the three men, who sort out the odd end-of-the-line mailings to be reported or discarded, sat in the Congressional mailroom, as bored as the day they got the job. It is a tedious task, one can imagine, especially with all the lunatics who have access to paper - or in this case cinderblocks - and the money for the appropriate postage.
"Y'know, if someone mails us anthrax, we'd be screwed", said Roberto, the least bored of the three.
"Yeah, and you know it's only a matter of time before some crackpot slips us some kind of AIDS-infected needle or exotic, odorless poison intended for some random senator. To think, that people are actually going to read their worthless manifestos and opinions, when they can't even address the letters right." replied Jon.
"I've been here 24 years," started Norm, the eldest of the three, who was only somewhat less bored than Jon and perhaps a bit more bored than Roberto. However, his thoughts adrift, he did not finish his statement, forgetting exactly what it was that he was going to say.
"Here is something interesting", said Jon, attempting to liven the atmosphere. "This guy addressed his letter to the central hall of Congress. What, does he think that every letter we get is read aloud each morning in front of every senator? Who spends their time writing letters to Congress?"
"That'd be great if they did that, I know the first letter I'd send. 'Vote me a raise too!'", replied Roberto, who was already slightly amused from a somewhat funny joke he had heard earlier in the day.
"Well," started Norm, but Norm never really finishes his sentences. He's old, after all.
"We need some kind of distraction, so read the thing.", interjected Roberto, attempting to decrease the level of boredom shared somewhat by the three, less by him and more by the others.
"Yes", said Norm, who said nothing else.
"Alright, what the hell..." and so, Jon read the letter. It said...
To the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress:
It is under unusual and strange circumstances that I summon you here today, and perhaps you will not find it fit to be summonable. It is my earnest and greatest hope that you may find a gratification in reading a letter such as this, that you shall pass it on to as many others as you may.
A rising nation, spread over a wide and fruitful land, traversing all the seas with the rich productions of their industry, engaged in commerce with nations who feel power and forget right, advancing rapidly to destinies beyond the reach of mortal eye - when I contemplate these transcendent objects, and see the honor, the happiness, and the hopes of this beloved country committed to the issue, and the auspices of this day, I shrink from the contemplation, and humble myself before the magnitude of the undertaking. We carry out in our lives the bold and seemingly insurmountable undertaking of attempting to create, each day, a more Perfect Union, a world where we promise ourselves that we can do our best, and that we strive to do better for our descendants. To you, then, gentlemen, who are charged with the sovereign functions of legislation, and to those associated with you, I look with encouragement for that guidance and support which may enable our posterity to steer with safety the vessel in which we are all embarked amidst the conflicting elements of a troubled world.
Since the Dawn of Time, Man has been confronted with Nature and Nature's Law, and frustrated with the possibility of knowing more than he does, he has regretted in his own way each lesson that passed unlearned. So, as it was destined to be repeated throughout history by the peoples of many different nations, he created a set of ideas about the way things should be, called them a government, and set about the moral and practical change necessary to keep the peace. However, it was not long before these governments were realized to be centrally flawed, in that there was no binding principle that stood true to affect their governance, until he learnt of the concept of Liberty. Indeed, the idea before him now was that no matter how binding the vices of the world, it was his right to be his own man, and the right of his fellows to be their own in kind: under this no God of the world would be worth worshipping who did not recognize this as its sole fundamental truth, no aspect of Nature worth finding beautiful if this premise indeed were false, and certainly no King whose mighty edicts were ever worth obeying throughout the course of history, no matter how benevolent or wise they may have been. It was this cause which compelled Man to seek change, and many times he tried and failed to do so. I would like to believe this is the story of our nation, but perhaps it is the story of every man in the annals of history who understood this basic idea, in his heart, and who was not afraid to speak, act and think upon it.
It is in such light that one realizes that death and life are the process of exercise of our inalienable rights, that a slave yearning freedom is free in mind knowing the freedom is his by Right, that he owns that Right and cherishes it, even under the most brutal oppression. Under this premise, he who has little and suffers injustice daily is equal before Creation itself to him who has plenty and lives in ease, for they have equal rights, amongst them the right to Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of their own Happiness.
In the world today I come forward for this so that you might ask yourself, "What principle compels me?" Do the interests of your parties, so distraught and confused, reflect a principle, or merely an attitude with which you were raised? I look towards politics and I see a surmounting confusion, a bulky and unyielding bureaucracy growing towards such levels that it has become unmanageably difficult. Such political change as that of today is embodied only in a particular status quo, a certain senseless and faithless allegiance to whosoever is the lesser of two common evils. The evil being not of a particular platform or issue, but the evil being of a failure to represent the real nature of Liberty, that we all, while taking sides, never should forget we exist as individual men and women in the eternal debate, that we hope to know more right than wrong, and exercise it with sensibility and understanding.
Certainly, governments are not to be replaced for light and transient causes, but their central trapping is that when evils are sufferable we are more disposed to suffer than to commit to change, and that this suffering dispenses with us a greater tolerance for furthered suffering. More men, over the course of history, have been disposed to do evil, not because he himself was empowered by evil people, but because good people too often used force against other good people to secure what they believed to be good things. So builds the background for the need of a constant state of revolution, that we each must attempt to dissuade our fellow men to not let their sufferings bind them to passions of greater suffering, to hope that they understand that to avoid repeating the mistakes of history they must embrace a greater aspiration for their lives and the lives of others than a belief that they each hold a power to apply, with force, on other men, something that their imagination tells them will interest them all. For it is against the interests of every man to submit to such a force.
So, I pose the question again to you, what principle compels you? For in that question is the foundation of the destruction of every political party ever known to man, the dissolution of every political bond than we hold, for every different answer is its own platform, every different answer balances between what is right and what is wrong. It is, that for the purposes of a nation, for the purposes of its growth towards tolerance and understanding of the different causes which compel us all, that we all might seek only one true political principle - Liberty. For in it, all other causes, attitudes, cultures and beliefs will thrive.
There are certain circumstances that prevent me the satisfaction of being there today, engaging in the social intercourse of ideas with you, being a trader in knowledge and philosophy. However, it is with due recourse that I hope to ensure, that through some way when you look back upon the true nature of these ideas, that you will find within them a subtle method which will hold together a lifetime of passion and affections. So too, having lived that lifetime myself, I give my eternal affection to you along with my assurances of the highest respects, so that if nothing more, these sentiments are not forgotten in the remises of the caretakers of human history, as so many often are.
- TH. Jefferson
"Boring!" said Roberto, who was now probably more bored than the others.
"So, worthless manifesto number one thousand one hundred and one. What should we do with it?" asked Jon.
"I think it's time to shoot some hoops." Roberto said, grabbing the garbage can high.
"He shoots..." Jon says, as he takes aim, and aloft a mighty crumpling of the letter, he throws the ballistic wad, hitting Norm in the head, who stood stunned but had already said everything he was going to, but amazingly... "He scores!"
"Great shot man. I'm so completely bored out of my mind now." said Roberto, who was not amused anymore, really at all.
"Same here." said Jon, who looked on to Norm, who was nearly asleep now.
They all resumed their busy-work, paying not much attention to the lost thoughts of others, but that was the way it was to be, in a world of boredom and mediocrity most likely not too different from our own.
Please be on the lookout for more news on the publishing status of this novel and new projects at NAMyth.com or at my personal blog, PAOracle.com.