Tag Archives

Archive of posts published in the tag: Constitution

Addressing Presidential Power

Both sides refuse to re-examine the proper role of the presidency, and focus on the president in power.  It may seem unrealistic to return to constitutional norms, but the alternative seems to be an escalation of the bitterness of our politics.

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The Progressive Inception

Clarity in words and thoughts decay over time.  When opposing views retain respect for the same words and principles, those ideas become ripe for interpretation, transposed to meet our current personal and political objectives as much as we may profess fidelity to its conception.

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The Role of the Ruling Class

The progressive effort to remove the obstacles to a purer democracy exposed the faults of democracy.  The administrative state moved law making power away from the accountability of an electorate.  Deliberation and debate were replaced by referendums and mobs. In frustration the voters sought their objectives from the courts and the executive.  It should be no surprise that those contests have become so hostile.

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The Resistance is the Establishment

The belief in a ‘general will’ or the ‘people’s will’ is a myth. It is the calling card of the progressives as well as the socialists and Mussolini’s brand of fascism. We are a collection of interests and factions and the constitution is a system to balance those interests, not to ignore them or oppress them.

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The Result of Sidelining Congress

Judge selection was a key reason many skeptics supported Trump over HRC. While we may have cheered many decisions made by the court that would never have made it through Congress, we have made that the focus of our voting. The result may be that liberals will become less activist on the court and more deferential to the states’ power.

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Anti-Fragile Democracy

The idea of central control of individual freedom is fraught with contradictions and has become our greatest challenge. The Progressive Era is where this came to a head and majoritarian democracy edged priority over individual and minority rights. This battle between Progressive majoritarianism manifested in an activist president and the Constitutional protection of individual rights defines our current political debate.

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Andrew Jackson and the Modern Presidency    

Historians can debate if Jackson moved us further away from the vision of the Constitution and its framers, as so many of his critics contended, or was a step in the evolution or the practical clarification of the vision to address the issues of his day.   There is much less agreement that his term was one of the most pivotal in the direction of our history.

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How Progressivism Perverts the Constitution

From The Washington Post and  George Will, Progressives are wrong about the essence of the Constitution: The fundamental division in U.S. politics is between those who take their bearings from the individual’s right to a capacious, indeed indefinite, realm of…

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The Progressive Fallacy and Donald Trump

Andrew Cline at National Review reminds us of one of the side benefits of a Trump presidency – that the left will rediscover the genius of the constitutional  limits on executive power -in The Real Hero of the Trump Resistance? James…

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The American Brexit

From Kevin Williamson at National Review, The Anglo-Americans: Hannan, too, is kind of populist, a leading figure in a populist political campaign. An American friend sent him a note during the referendum that read: “We voted ‘Leave’ in 1776, and it…

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Means Matter

One of the problems with the ‘ends justify the means’ mentality is determining whose ends you are pursuing. The idea of a living constitution sounds fine to the left as long as they are pursuing the goals the left values,…

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Liberty and Democracy

From George Will at National Review, Where Justice Scalia Went Wrong: There is no philosophizing in the Constitution — until the Founders’ philosophy is infused into it by construing the document as a charter of government for a nation that…

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An Afterthought or a Relic

from Jonah Goldberg in The National Review, Democrats’ Dumbest Complaint The whole point of the Constitution is to prevent the concentration of power. The Founders understood that the only thing that can reliably check power is power. If too much…

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Redefining Liberty

I attended a Hillsdale College Free Market Forum in Atlanta last week. I was able to meet Don Boudreaux from Café Hayek, one of my daily go to blogs, and Ronald Pestritto, a history professor at Hillsdale. Ron authored three…

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When Democracy Trumps Liberty

George Will wrote an excellent piece in National Affairs, The Limits of Majority Rule.  My very brief summary and a few comments: The Progressive pivot of about 1890- but reached in full bore under FDR  is when democracy superseded liberty…

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Restraint and Accountability

From The Atlantic, How American Politics Went Insane by Jonathan Rauch The Founders knew all too well about chaos. It was the condition that brought them together in 1787 under the Articles of Confederation. The central government had too few powers and…

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Democracy and Liberty

From National Affairs George Will writes The Limits of Majority Rule.  It is an excellent summary of the history of the court as it has moved from judicial review to activism.  The success of Progressivism has hinged on the court shifting from…

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The Unwritten Constitution

From The Atlantic, How American Politics Went Insane by Jonathan Rauch The Constitution makes no mention of many of the essential political structures that we take for granted, such as political parties and congressional committees. If the Constitution were all we had,…

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Democracy and Freedom

by Henry Oliner “It would seem that reasonable people ought to be able to get together and get things done.” This seemingly obvious and innocuous statement, a statement of pragmatic democracy, underlies the frustration voters feel and why they think…

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Is Democracy a Threat to Liberty?

from zpolitics’ Ron Hart,  AMERICA’S TWO-PARTY SYSTEM IS CRACKING UP Within the Democratic Party, which historically enforces party discipline with draconian measures, there is also a split. Secular progressives, led by Bernie Sanders, want to see this country become socialist.…

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