Means What it Says

Time magazine editor Richard Stengel presented the cover of his new July 4 issue, which features the U.S. Constitution going through a paper shredder and asks if the document still matters. According to Stengel, it does, but not as much anymore.“Yes, of course it still matters but in some ways it matters less than people think,” Stengel said on “Morning Joe.” on MSNBC

Larry Elder: “When the chief justice read me the oath,” President Franklin D. Roosevelt said to a speechwriter, “and came to the words ‘support the Constitution of the United States,’ I felt like saying: ‘Yes, but it’s the Constitution as I understand it, flexible enough to meet any new problem of democracy — not the kind of Constitution your court has raised up as a barrier to progress and democracy.'”

FDR’s statement vividly illustrates the Big Divide between (most) Republicans and Democrats, free marketers and collectivists, Milton Friedman and Paul Krugman. It’s the line separating those who believe in the power of individuals from those who believe in the power of government — so long as they’re the ones in power. It’s the line that separates those who believe in the welfare state from those who not only believe that the federal government recklessly spends more than it takes in, but also spends it on things not permitted by the Constitution — and the country is worse off for having done so.

This is the tea party message (to the consternation of Democrats and squishy Republicans): The Constitution means what it says and says what it means. All this Constitution talk produces the inevitable backlash. Joy Behar, the learned Constitutional scholar, asked, “Do you think this Constitution-loving is getting out of hand?”

A Los Angeles Times columnist and I sat on a panel to analyze President Barack Obama’s last State of the Union speech. What, I asked, gives the President authority to place health care under the command and control of the federal government? She replied, that part of the Constitution that says to provide for the domestic tranquility.

She refers to a part of the preamble to the Constitution: “We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility … establish this Constitution for the United States of America.” Many members of this “living, breathing” Constitution school claim authority for things like ObamaCare resides in the “promote the general welfare” part of the preamble. Using the “domestic tranquility” part was a first.

The Father of the Constitution, James Madison, anticipated the preamble-gives-government-permission-to-do-all-sorts-of-things-for-which-it-lacks-authority argument. In 1794, Congress appropriated money for charitable purposes. An incensed Madison said, “I cannot undertake to lay my finger on that article of the Constitution which granted a right to Congress of expending, on objects of benevolence, the money of their constituents.”

Time Magazine’s recent Constitution cover story asks: “Does It Still Matter?” Its answer? Well, yeah, it sort of does, but then again, you know, not so much. After all, the Founding Fathers could neither foresee computers nor Twitter nor predict that Rep. Anthony Weiner would use both to implode his career. So, really, in the modern day, what’s the relevance of the old document crafted by well-to-do, slave-owning white males?

As the federal government got bigger over the next 200 years, and assumed responsibilities the Founding Fathers considered the job of individuals, families and communities — or of the separate states — Madison’s position withered. It’s now fighting for its life.

Soon, the 50 percent of voters who pay little or no taxes will march into the polling booth, many pulling levers, pushing buttons and punching chads to vote themselves a raise — at somebody’s else’s expense. If the Supreme Court permits the ObamaCare mandate, anything goes.

Constitution-shredders point not to our bloated federal government, the entitlement mentality or to the desire of politicians on both sides to promise things that the Founders feared would eventually produce an electorate with little or no financial skin in the game. No, the real villain is the dastardly Bush tax cuts! If only they had not been enacted, they tell us!

Why not blame the tax cuts signed by other presidents? President John Kennedy’s plan reduced the top marginal income tax rate from 91 percent to 70 percent. President Ronald Reagan reduced the top marginal tax rate from 70 to 28 percent. President George W. Bush, by contrast, reduced the top rate from 39.6 to 35 percent, making him Scrooge-like in comparison.

The Washington Post’s “Fact Checker” says the two Bush tax cuts, in 2001 and 2003, “cost” $2.8 trillion over 10 years (an average of $280 billion per year). In the last two and a half years alone, Obama has presided over the addition of almost $4 trillion in new debt, and this year’s deficit is an estimated $1.6 trillion.

Besides, liberals like the Bush tax cuts — at least for the lower 98 percent of workers. Since most Democrats want to preserve the Bush-era tax rates for all but the top 2 percent, the objectionable “cost” of the cuts becomes even more inconsequential to dealing with budget, deficit and debt problems.

So now what? We drifted away from the Constitution in fits and starts. It is how we must return to it. Voters must remember who talked the talk and walked the walk. This is a time when we change course, when people rediscover American exceptionalism and the wisdom of the Constitution and say, “Enough.”

If not, Greece awaits.

It’s all Greek to Washington… 😦

Political Cartoons by Chuck Asay

Political Cartoons by Lisa Benson

Political Cartoons by Chuck Asay

All Hail King Obama I

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“There is going to be an effort on the president’s part to use [executive powers] to satisfy his base and institutionalize what he can,” said John Kenneth White, professor of politics at the Catholic University of America.

This week, the Environmental Protection Agency begins regulating greenhouse gas emissions at some energy plants and factories — a move Obama pushed for after his cap-and-trade environmental legislation stalled in Congress.

Obama is expected to make more frequent use of executive orders, vetoes, signing statements and policy initiatives that originate within the federal agencies to maneuver around congressional Republicans who are threatening to derail initiatives he has already put in place, including health care reforms, and to launch serial investigations into his administration’s spending.
“He is the manager in chief, and things like signing statements and however you thwart the will of Congress, sure — there are lots of things that go on other than passing new laws and giving out money that are all part of managing this incredible enterprise,” said Stephen Hess, a Brookings Institution expert on the presidency. (Washington Examiner)
So it’s good to be the King. Don’t like what Congress is doing, screw ’em. Pass your own agenda by going around them. Screw ’em all.
And “Screw you American People!” that was the message he received on Nov 2nd.
And he intends to act on it with Marxist gusto.

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So now if Sith Lord Obama can just dissolve the legislative body as they he did in “Star Wars” he’d be so much happier.
Hugo Chavez, Hillary’s buddy, has it so much easier in Venezuela. He wants power, he gets it.
He wants to takeover an industy, no question. He wants to steal foreign companies property. Easy.
Wants to control anything and everything- easy as pie.
A dictatorship is so much easier to deal with. No messy people’s rights to give a crap about.
You’re either with me or you’re in jail or dead.
That would be so much easier.
The father of our Constitution, James Madison, recognized that gridlock is the goal. He envisioned a system specifically designed to curtail the government’s ceaseless appetite for the irrelevant.

Madison prophesied that the most dangerous “wing nuts” are not sent to Washington, they are cultivated there. Today, with Capitol Hill curiously resembling a progressive college campus full of monologues and Blackberry seizures, the reality-gap has widened. In times of single party dominance, wing-nuttery reigns supreme.

Dr. Thomas Sowell, in “Dismantling America,” said in reference to President Obama, “That such an administration could be elected in the first place, headed by a man whose only qualifications to be president of the United States at a dangerous time in the history of the world were rhetoric, style and symbolism — and whose animus against the values and institutions of America had been demonstrated repeatedly over a period of decades beforehand — speaks volumes about the inadequacies of our educational system and the degeneration of our culture.”

Fighting government intrusion into our lives is becoming increasingly difficult for at least two reasons. The first reason is that educators at the primary, secondary and university levels have been successful in teaching our youngsters to despise the values of our Constitution and the founders of our nation — “those dead, old, racist white men.” Their success in that arena might explain why educators have been unable to get our youngsters to read, write and compute on a level comparable with other developed nations; they are too busy proselytizing students.

Like the La Raza (“The Race”) studies in the Tucson Unified School District that divides students into latino and no-latino and teaches the latinos that they are an oppressed minority in an “occupied” territory of Mexico.

Seriously.

TUSD’s Mexican-American studies program was launched in 1997. Students learn about Mexican-American culture, ethnic stereotypes, and explore U.S. history from a Chicano point of view.

The department’s website says its “students will attain an understanding and appreciation of historic and contemporary Mexican American contributions.”

The department says its goals are:

  • Advocating for and providing curriculum that is centered within the pursuit of social justice.
  • Advocating for and providing curriculum that is centered within the Mexican American/Chicano cultural and historical experience. (Not American!)
  • Working towards the invoking of a critical consciousness within each and every student (that you’re an oppressed minority!)
  • Providing and promoting teacher education that is centered within Critical Pedagogy, Latino Critical Race Pedagogy, and Authentic Caring (Provided by La Raza, a racist Hispanic Advocacy group that is for Atzlan-the “reunification” of  California, Southern Arizona and New Mexico with it’s rightful country of Mexico)
  • Promoting and advocating for social and educational transformation. (Orwell’s Finest!)
Hector Ayala, a teacher at Cholla High Magnet School, “reports that the director of Raza Studies accused him of being the ‘white man’s agent,’ and that when this director was a teacher, he taught a separatist political agenda, and his students told Hector that they were taught in Raza Studies to ‘not fall for the white man’s traps.'” Former Superintendent of Public Instruction (now Attorney General) Horne wrote.

Horne’s push to the the Mexican-American studies program began after a 2006 incident at Tucson Magnet High School.

His deputy, Margaret (Garcia) Dugan, was sent to speak to students after labor activist Dolores Huerta told a school assembly that “Republicans hate Latinos.” Some students stood silently, with tape over their mouths, during Dugan’s speech.

The Liberal, ever respective of your Free Speech. 🙂

TUSD also has programs in Pan-Asian and Native American studies. because after all, you have to divide and conquer first.

Teaching kids American History together as a shared culture and shared history would be “racist” and disrespectful after all.

The second reason is we’ve become a nation of thieves, accustomed to living at the expense of one another and to accommodate that we’re obliged to support tyrannical and overreaching government.

Adolf Hitler had it right when he said, “How fortunate for governments that the people they administer don’t think.” (Walter E Williams)

Indeed.

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