By Paul Jacob
"So this is how liberty dies: with thunderous applause." That's just one of the several wise lines in the biggest box office tragedy in world history, "Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith."
For many in my generation, the original "Star Wars" was a significant movie. Its "limited government" message may have always lied buried behind cowboy action and gosh-wow special effects, but that message was always there. "The Force" was a bit of a puzzle, but, hey, this was fantasy. And a triumphant, feel-good fantasy at that.
But the current film is not triumphant. It's a tragedy. The bad guys win. Our hero becomes evil. With the applause of the representatives, a republic gives birth to empire. Ancient principles get thrown out with the old droids.
Some people are making too much partisan political hay from the movie. Comparing Senator Bill Frist to Darth Sidious is ridiculous.
But it's not ridiculous at all to mention a principle most people lose track of in all the light saber battles -- term limits. The wicked Chancellor assumed "temporary" military powers, and ignored a term limit. When the excuse for those powers finally collapsed, he refused to step down, declaring himself Emperor. Creator George Lucas imagines this about perfectly: term limits are republican through and through; to resist them is to join the Dark Side of politics.
So, any time you witness a politician resisting term limits, see the grisly face of that insidious Lord Sidious, the Emperor, lying his way to the murder of a republic.
This is Common Sense. I'm Paul Jacob.
Common Sense is published by Americans for Limited Government. Their website can be visited at www.limitedgov.org.