Friday, July 04, 2008

Happy Freedom Day!

This is one of the greatest days of the year. Think about the sacrifices of the brave men who signed the first Declaration of Independence in 1776 on this date. They were risking everything that they owned and loved when they signed that document. If the fledgling 13 colonies didn’t achieve their goal of independence from Great Britain, they were dead men…with a price on their heads and no where to hide. But the dream of freedom burned in their hearts and they put everything else out of their mind….Freedom was the only outcome they would accept!

In 1776, America was a very small island with virtually all of its economy reliant upon agriculture and the exporting of that production to Europe. Living standards badly lagged those in Europe. We were but a flee on the back of the giant Great Britain. From that lowly perch our country has grown into the dominant country in the world. Today, we have a GDP that is twice that of second place Japan.

Yes, we are blessed with very abundant resources, a temperate climate and many other strong attributes but the one thing that sets us apart from every other country and the major reason for our success is our freedom, a freedom won at the end of the long and difficult Revolutionary War. This idea of freedom first started in the USA and has spread around the world, but even today reigns preeminent in this country. It is this sense of freedom that makes us such an adventuresome citizenry and with an entrepreneurial zeal that other societies only hope to emulate. It is why over half of all of the patents in the world have been issued to Americans. There is a sense of optimism that is built upon the freedoms that we enjoy.

Each year we send out gifts to our clients on only one date, July 4th. This year’s gift is a plaque with the picture shown at the top of the blog. The inscription reads, “FREEDOM…Eternal Vigilance is the Price of Liberty…Thomas Jefferson, 1801.”

Today I’m heading to the Cubs-Cardinal game in St. Louis with my sons. Last night we shot off fireworks late into the night with all of the freedom songs that I could find blaring in the background. I’m proud and honored to be an American on this our greatest day of the year.

I hope that you have a great 4th, our freedom day!

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