As a recipient of an E.C. Harwood Visiting Research Fellowship at the American Institute for Economic Research, I am inspired by tales of the principled battles that Colonel Harwood fought in support of the ideals behind the US Constitution. Taking his oath to support that great document as a lodestar, his support for the cause of human liberty and personal dignity led him to be a vocal opponent of the policies of FDR’s New Deal. As such, he continued doing so despite orders from his military commanders to cease his criticisms, eventually choosing to take early retirement from a promising military career as a graduate of West Point.
My lesson from his brave acts against the most powerful institutions in the US is that being a true patriot requires supporting an ideology of individual freedom rather than accepting partisan interests that violate foundational precepts. As such, Americans wishing for a united and prosperous country should follow Edward Harwood’s example to challenge the authority of government officials and question assertions of “experts” they use for support.
While the emergence of a novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, and the disease that it might cause, Covid-19, are now at center stage, they share equal billing with the former only slightly in the background. In all events, this pair of menaces offers a convenient pretense for government officials to seek expansions in their powers that give them greater control over human actions and private resources. Initially, the specter of climate change was not enough to induce most citizens to accept enhanced political power that would diminish their liberty and curtail their personal rights.