First Principle: The only reliable basis for sound government and just human relations is ____________ Law.
Describe the relationship between God’s Law and Natural Law.
What is natural law?
What is the role of natural law in America?
What rights does natural law give us?
According to Cicero, what did it mean to build up a society based on principles of Natural Law?
Does building a society based on Natural law only work for some groups and time periods?
Principle 2 – A Virtuous and Moral People
Second Principle: A free people cannot survive under a republican constitution unless they remain virtuous and ______________ strong.
[How can self-interest be compatible with “public virtue,” as described in The 5,000 Year Leap Principle #2?]
Why does self-government only work for moral and virtuous people?
What is “Public Virtue”?
Why is it more effective to promote virtue through educating youth than by educating adults?
What is the relationship between religion and public and individual morality?
What authority do citizens have to establish standards of public morality?
Principle 3 – Virtuous and Moral Leaders
Third Principle: The most promising method of securing a virtuous and morally stable people is to elect ______________ leaders.
Who has the greatest influence in preserving the morality of the nation?
What was the Founders’ view of human nature?
What was Thomas Jefferson’s idea of a “natural aristocracy”?
What was Jefferson’s idea of an “artificial aristocracy”?
As Benjamin Franklin traveled to Europe, what did he feel was a serious mistake pertaining to appointment of public officials there?
How did the Founders feel about haggling for high salaried public officials?
What did Benjamin Franklin say was to be expected if future generations of Americans permitted the lure of high salaries to be associated with public offices?
What is the formula for producing leaders of character and virtue?
Principle 4 – The Role of Religion
Fourth Principle: Without ______________ the government of a free people cannot be maintained.
What surprised Alexis de Tocqueville about the different ways religion influenced politics in America compared to Europe?
What is the proper relationship between religion and government?
What were the three things that were emphasized that needed to be taught in schools in the Northwest Ordinance?
What were the teachings of religion in schools restricted to?
What are the “Fundamental Points” of sound religion to be taught in the schools?
What did Alexis de Tocqueville describe as the role of religion in the schools?
What did Alexis de Tocqueville describe as the role of the American clergy?
Why did the Founding Fathers want the federal government to be excluded from all problems relating to religion and churches?
In what level of government should religious problems be solved?
Principle 5 – The Role of the Creator
Fifth Principle: All things were created by God, therefore upon Him all mankind are equally ______________, and to Him they are equally ________________.
According to W. Cleon Skousen, what did the Founders consider to be the foundation of all reality?
Outline the simple thought process that logically concludes that there is a Creator.
Every single self-evident proof enunciated by the Founders is rooted in what presupposition?
According to the Founders, what is the entire foundation of a just society?
What kind of a relationship did the Founders generally believe God desires to have with us?
Why did Washington and Alexis de Tocqueville believe a sense of religious obligation is a critical part of our judicial system?
Principle 6 – All Men Are Created Equal
Sixth Principle: All men are created __________.
What are the three ways in which human beings can be treated as equal?
What does it mean for a society to provide equal justice?
How can the impatience of a minority in “crossing the cultural gap” be advantageous?
Principle 7 – Equal Rights, Not Equal Things
Seventh Principle: The proper role of government is to protect equal ___________, not provide equal ____________.
Describe the proper role of government regarding the establishment of “equality” in America.
What did the Founders think of forced “redistribution of wealth”?
What’s the difference between “equality of outcome” and “equality of opportunity,” or “equality before the law”?
Many believe the government’s primary economic responsibility is to take from the ___________ and give to the __________-________.
How does the government sometimes commit “legal” crimes?
What is the popular fallacy with the concept of forced redistribution of wealth?
How did the Founding Fathers feel about the freedom to prosper and income inequality?
What are the four examples that Benjamin Franklin used of what he called “counter-productive” compassion?
What are the five principles of “calculated” compassion?
Principle 8 – Man’s Unalienable Rights
Eighth Principle: Men are endowed by their Creator with certain ________________ rights.
Explain the meaning of “inalienable rights”.
Where do rights come from?
When is a right unalienable?
What is a vested right?
How are property rights essential to the pursuit of happiness?
What are the three great categories of natural rights?
Principle 9 – The Role of Revealed Law
Ninth Principle: To protect man’s ___________, God has revealed certain principles of divine law.
Where can we find and how can we identify our unalienable rights?
What is the relationship between rights and duties?
What two peoples in history did the Founders say established this type of government?
What is the difference between freedom and liberty?
Explain the Creator’s superior law of criminal justice.
Principle 10 – Sovereignty of the People
Tenth Principle: The God given right to govern is vested in the sovereign authority of the ____________ people.
What is the “divine right of kings”?
Compare the concept of popular sovereignty with the divine right of kings.
How did the Founding Fathers view the role of rulers?
Principle 11 – Who Can Alter the Government
Eleventh Principle: The majority of the people may alter or abolish a government which has become _________________.
What is popular sovereignty?
Who has the inherent right and power to alter government?
Does a minority have the right to alter government?
What is likely to be the best form of government which will preserve liberty?
Principle 12 – Advantages of a Republic
Twelfth Principle: The United States of America shall be a _______________.
Define a democractic form of government.
Why has a direct democractic form of government never worked?
Why does a republic work comparatively better than a democracy?
Define a republican form of government.
Why is our government considered a “democratic” republic?
Principle 13 – Protection Against Human Frailty
Thirteenth Principle: A constitution should be structured to ______________ protect the people from the human frailties of their rulers.
Did the Founders generally place more trust in the people or in the leaders of the people?
Where did the Founders believe the greatest danger arises from?
How did the Founders view the power of government?
“Leaders are not angels but __________ human beings.”
What did James Madison say about the process of how constitutional rights could be lost?
Fourteenth Principle: Life and liberty are secure only so long as the right to _______________ is secure.
Why are property rights so essential?
Principle 15 – Free-Market Economics
Fifteenth Principle: The highest level of prosperity occurs when there is a free market economy and a ___________________ of government regulations.
What are the four economic freedoms that Adam Smith claimed are needed in order to successfully implement a free-market economy? Explain each.
What are the four types of government intervention in the markets that have proven to be helpful to a free-market economy? Explain each.
Principle 16 – The Separation of Powers
Sixteenth Principle: The government should be separated into three branches: ________________, ___________________, and ______________________.
Explain what “separation of powers” mean?
Why is dividing political power so important considering human nature?
What are some responsibilities of government that are most effectively executed by state or local governments?
What are some responsibilities of government that are most effectively executed by the federal government?
Why is it so important to “keep solutions local”?
Principle 17 – Checks and Balances
Seventeenth Principle: A system of _____________ and _____________________ should be adopted to prevent the abuse of power.
What does the phrase “checks and balances” mean?
Principle 18 – Importance of a Written Constitution
Eighteenth Principle: The unalienable rights of the people are most likely to be preserved if the principles of government are set forth in a _________________ constitution.
How are constitutions different from laws that are passed by legislatures?
What is the purpose of a constitution?
Why is it so important for a state or nation to have a written constitution?
Are governments best designed through the intellect of an elite individual or through the wisdom of many?
Principle 19 – Limiting and Defining the Powers of Government
Nineteenth Principle: Only limited and carefully defined powers should be delegated to government, all others being retained in the ______________.
Is it safer to enumerate the powers of or limitations on government? Explain.
Principle 20 – Majority Rule, Minority Rights
Twentieth Principle: Efficiency and dispatch require government to operate according to the will of the majority, but constitutional provisions must be made to protect the rights of the ____________.
What are the limits of majority rule, minority rights?
What is the problem with legislating by unanimous consent?
Explain why majority rule is a necessity.
Why did the Founders feel so protective of minority rights?
Principle 21 – Strong Local Self-Government
Twenty First Principle: Strong __________ self government is the keystone to preserving human freedom.
How does the spirit of “voluntarism” get numbed when political power gravitates towards the central government?
What types of problems should be delegated to the central government?
Why is strong local self-government ideal?
Principle 22 – Government by Law, Not by Men
Twenty Second Principle: A free people should be governed by law and not by the _____________ of men.
What does it mean to be “governed by the whims of men?”
What is meant by “the rule of law” or “fixed laws”?
How does the rule of law preserve liberty?
Why is it important that laws should be understandable and stable?
Principle 23 – Importance of an Educated Electorate
Twenty Third Principle: A free society cannot survive as a republic without a broad program of general ______________.
What is the purpose of general, or publicly funded, education?
How can education be used to promote morality?
According to the Northwest Ordinance, what subjects did the Founders want taught in schools?
Why do citizens have a responsibility to be informed voters?
Principle 24 – Peace Through Strength
Twenty Fourth Principle: A ________ people will not survive unless they stay strong.
What conditions did the Founders believe we must live by to qualify for freedom and prosperity?
“Peace was the goal, but ___________ was the means.”
How is strength the greatest preserver of peace?
What did Samuel Adams say about American’s duty to the Creator in preserving freedom?
The Founders were peace-loving, but not ___________.
Principle 25 – Avoid Entangling Alliances
Twenty Fifth Principle: “Peace, commerce, and honest friendship with all nations _________________ alliances with none.”
What is the difference between the Founders’ foreign policy of separatism and isolationism?
What is the difference between a temporary alliance and an entangling alliance?
When did the Founders deem temporary alliances to be necessary?
What is the danger with “playing favorites”?
Principle 26 – Protecting the Role of the Family
Twenty Sixth Principle: The core unit which determines the strength of any society is the _____________; therefore, the government should foster and protect its integrity.
How can a government protect the family unit?
What is the role of parents and families in America?
Who is primarily responsible for fueling the fires of virtue from generation to generation?
What is the responsibility of children to their parents?
Principle 27 – Avoiding the Burden of Debt
Twenty Seventh Principle: The burden of ________ is as destructive to freedom as subjugation by conquest.
How is debt equivocated to slavery?
What is the Founder’s policy concerning a national debt?
Principle 28 – The Founders’ Sense of Manifest Destiny
Twenty Eighth Principle: The United States has a manifest destiny to be an ______ and a ______ to the entire human race.
“Happily for America, happily we trust for the __________ human race, they pursued a _________ and more ___________ course. They accomplished a revolution which has no parallel in the annals of human society. They reared the _____________ of governments which have no model on the face of the globe. They formed the design of a great Confederacy, which it is incumbent on their _____________________ to ______________ and _________________.” (James Madison, The Federalist Papers, No. 14, pp. 104-105.)
Twenty Eighth Principle: The United States has a _________________ _________________ to be an example and a blessing to the entire human race.
What did the early colonists consider to be their American “manifest destiny”?
What is the difference between the Founders’ sense of mission and the chauvinistic idea of “racial superiority”?
Mission and Vision
Our mission is to promote and defend the family unit by teaching principles of limited government as espoused by the Constitution of the United States.
Our vision is for an American Republic that treats the family unit as sacred and worthy of protection—an America that trusts and enables parents to raise their children with a loyalty to God, Family and Country.
The Benjamin Franklin Center was established in Utah in 2017 and is operated by a virtual team spread across the western United States.
Our team has been certified and trained to teach the Healing of America Seminars, originally produced by the Thomas Jefferson Center for Constitutional Studies.
We teach principles of successful government using The 5,000 Year Leap, The Making of America, and the Healing of America Seminars, among many other manuals.