Ted Malloch: True Virtue vs. Virtue Signaling

Guest post by Ted Malloch

The “Woke Left” and its counterpart, the mainstream media, are guilty of constantly virtue signaling — without a clue about the definition, meaning or purpose of true virtues.

 

They have no idea where true virtues come from, how they fit together or how they undergird a beneficial life for the good or a society of ordered liberty.

 

 

They are in a word: unschooled.

 

They need to go back and read Benjamin Franklin to get informed.

 

In 1726, at the tender age of just 20, Franklin devised a system to develop what he rightly called, Character.

 

In it he listed thirteen Virtues as:


Temperance. Eat not to dullness; drink not to elevation.

Silence. Speak not but what may benefit others or yourself; avoid trifling conversation.

Order. Let all your things have their places; let each part of your business have its time.

Resolution. Resolve to perform what you ought; perform without fail what you resolve.

Frugality. Make no expense but to do good to others or yourself; i.e., waste nothing.

Industry. Lose no time; be always employed in something useful; cut off all unnecessary actions.

Sincerity. Use no hurtful deceit; think innocently and justly, and, if you speak, speak accordingly.

Justice. Wrong none by doing injuries or omitting the benefits that are your duty.

Moderation. Avoid extremes; forbear resenting injuries so much as you think they deserve.

Cleanliness. Tolerate no uncleanliness in body, clothes, or habitation.

Tranquillity. Be not disturbed at trifles, or at accidents common or unavoidable.

Chastity. Rarely use venery but for health or offspring, never to dullness, weakness, or the injury of your own or another’s peace or reputation.

Humility. Imitate Jesus and Socrates.

This is a lasting and indispensable guide to right living from one of our most important Founding Fathers.

It was a systematic way to check behavior and guide one toward the good, the right, and the just.

Benjamin Franklin, one of our nation’s most revered thinkers, the quintessential American in many ways, was a man of uncommonly fine common sense. His Poor Richard’s Almanac was full of proverbs and aphorisms.

Which are your favorites? Share them with us…

Although he was never able to finish his project of compiling a comprehensive compendium of practical wisdom, (he was busy writing the Declaration of Independence, starting a university, a newspaper, a fire department, a library, a science museum and inventing all sorts of things) he was able to lay down the beginnings of this work in his later writings.

Collected within one volume are Franklin’s writings organized around his timeless philosophy on living well, containing his thoughts on justice, moderation, and chastity.

The Art of Virtue is a simple, concise, and illuminating guide to living a virtuous and fulfilling life.

It makes perfect reading for young and old alike.

In fact, it should be mandatory reading, because unlike the silly signals sent today by the Left, it is grounded in a philosophy and religious impulse as old as Cato, Cicero, Solomon, Socrates and Jesus.

For him virtue was a life well lived, grounded in deep morality and decency.

It led to a good character, strong civil institutions, and a sound society. The three go together, hand in hand.

It was not a posturing or a shrill political exhortation but rather a means and manner intended for noble purpose.

Paste this list of true virtues to your screen and see how you are doing day to day, week to week, and year to year. Improve yourself, take responsibility.

In a word, be more like Ben Franklin and less like the Democratic candidates, the inane CNN talking heads, i.e.,  Fredo, and the lame and totally biased professoriate.

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