But the SECOND question that one ought to ask is- Cui Bono? ('qui bono' "To whose benefit?") Cui Bono is a Latin term, probably made most famous by the Roman judge, Lucius Cassius, in ancient times, and still used with effect today. The answers to this question can be most enlightening, in all sorts of situations. Sometimes, trying to figure out the intricacies of a complicated bit of legislation, sorting out all the whys and wherefores, can be exhausting. In such a situation, it is often more productive to consider who will benefit, and who will be hurt. This is true outside politics, as well.
When I contemplate the current state of affairs among those who supposedly stand for Liberty and listen to all the various arguments among all the various factions, if I were not a student of history, I'd be tempted to indulge in fits of gibbering rage at the parochial pettiness of some of the arguments ongoing. Yet, putting matters into perspective, history shows that this is not unusual. The Greek city-states, after revolting from Persian rule, spent the next few years squabbling and quarreling amongst one another.
It was not until the advancing Persian army came closer and closer to Greece that the bitter factionalism died down, and the various Greek city-states joined together. After the heroic defense of Thermopylae, where a few thousand Greeks, led by Leonidas and the Three Hundred, slowed the Persian advance, the Greeks rallied to defeat Persia, first at Salamis and then at Plateia.
The thirteen American Colonies similarly were stricken by factionalism and parochialism; it took over a year after the Revolutionary War started on April 19th, 1775 for the Continental Congress to declare independence, over 3 months after the British fleet evacuated Boston. Nor are these the only two such examples; from Ancient Rome to medieval times right up to today, history is replete with people busy picking a fight rather than picking the fruits of peace, even if the only quarrel they can find is with their comrades right beside them. Ah, well.
Not only that, but history also shows us that there are often those who have taken a tyrant's silver to deliberately sow discord, to encourage division, to promote indecision, to poison the morale of the resolute and intimidate the undecided. It is worthwhile, then, to ask, in the immortal words of Lucius Cassius, cui bono? Who benefits from the present state of factionalism and bickering? On whose behalf are the sowers of discord acting? On whose behalf are you acting?
Would you rather be right, or free?
*I* do not pretend to know the answer to this question, O gentle reader. But I do know that it is worth your time to ask, and to answer, that last question. Contemplate your answers, consider the Perfection of Imperfection, and then ask yourself one more question- "What is my goal, what do I seek?" Most men seek to defend their families. Patriots know that defense of the rights of Man is essential to the long-term well being of their family and their friends, and thus they defend what is right. What do you defend?
Do you truly seek individual freedom, where every person may do as they choose, live as they please, as long as they do not interfere with the right of others to do the same? I am struck by the irony of those who say that they seek to oppose tyranny, to defend freedom, yet in the next breath they aspire to stamp their preconceptions upon every brow. Is that Liberty?
Look at your actions, and weigh the answer.
Then do some PT and polish those skills!
With regard to all who serve the Light,