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Political Columnist Questions Relevance of Constitution

After reading Ezra Klein’s latest op-ed piece in the Washington Post last week, I couldn’t stop my burning desire to pen a rebuttal of the skewed viewpoint he brings in this column.

In Part one of the column, Klein opens by discussing the new House rule on the wording of legislation. The new rule Klein is referring to is the House’s attempt at something similar to the Enumerated Powers Act. For those of you not familiar, The Enumerated Powers Act is legislation that would require by law all Acts of Congress to specifically state which “Enumerated Powers” from Article I Section 8 of the Constitution gives Congress the authority to enact that particular piece of legislation. This Act has been proposed many times over the past 30 years or so, but until now it hasn’t gotten much attention.

In typical elitist behavior, Klein begins by mocking Republicans and “tea partyers” for their insistence on a rule that would require Congress to justify their actions. To make his point that such a rule is pointless, he offers the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare) as an example. He mentions that the Obamacare Act states that it has the authority to require every citizen to buy health insurance because “insurance is interstate commerce.” Klein questions: So why are conservatives against Obamacare?

Klein is missing the point. Levying this requirement on Congress protects the People by strengthen the Judicial Branch. With these new rules, Congress must make its case for a particular piece of legislation at the time it writes the law. That ensures that Congress cannot use one argument to pass legislation and then another argument to defend it before a Judge. Now the lawmakers’ true intent can be recorded and taken into account when the constitutionality of legislation is brought into question. To build on Klein’s example in Obamacare: There can be no weaseling by Government lawyers later when a law is brought before the Supreme Court. The writers of Obamacare clearly make their case that it should be legal because the individual mandate extends from Congress’ power “To regulate Commerce […] among the several States.” Based on that, the Court can clearly examine the claim, and so can we.

More and more often, the Court is reviewing laws that leave the intent of Congress ambiguous. I have read several decisions from the bench which note that the intention of Congress is unclear. A rule similar to the Enumerated Powers Act will go a long way in cleaning up what has become a behemoth of over-legislation.

Klein continues in part two of his column by generally attacking the relevance Constitution itself. He pines that the document is not “clear” and deals with “very different problems” than what we face today. He points to the only-recently-questionable language of the Second Amendment: “A well regulated Militia being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” Klein shamelessly recycles the now-refuted myth that these words only apply to a modern “well regulated militia” and not to the entire body of citizens, as the words “the right of the people” clearly state.

Klein is right in one sense; the Framers of the Constitution likely never imagined that future Americans would blatantly disregard the intent, meaning and spirit of the document to argue its relevance.

Klein’s viewpoint represents what has brought this country to the state it is in. Advocating a departure from the concept of a limited Federal Republic, this modern liberal ideology wishes to replace the rights of individuals to shape their own destiny with an Orwellian authoritative system of bureaucracy that stifles any possibility of personal advancement for the expense of a few social services.

The Choice: Live Free or Die

Those of you that know me, probably realize that I enjoy having open and honest discussions about history, politics, and philosophy.   I am firm in my convictions, but humble in my limited knowledge.  With that said, I hope that each of you read what I have to say and seriously consider its implications.

The natural progress of things is for liberty to yield, and government to gain ground. - Thomas Jefferson

The Tenets of The Republic

Over the  234 years of our history, we have faced political strife, domestic injustice, foreign aggressors, and economic catastrophe.   Yet, through all of these hardships we have emerged wiser, more just, victorious, and more prosperous time and time again.  Each time, our real perseverance has been owed not to the select few elite, but to each and every one of our citizens.  As citizens, nothing is more important than the right we have to govern ourselves.  Men and women have died to give us that right.  Our independence has allowed us to shape our own destiny and make our dreams reality.

The United States of America is on a dangerous path.   With each passing election, we are getting further and further from the principals on which we were founded:  limited government, individual liberty, and an economy based on the concept that people should be able to keep what they earn.

Limited government has been replaced by a crushing bureaucracy at every level.  We were a nation modeled on a republic which allowed us to choose who was the best, brightest, and most virtuous to govern our affairs as public servants, holding true to the Constitution, and the common law.  We were established as a Federal government to allow decisions that were not of select national importance to be made by a government closest to the people as possible.  We were a society rooted in the notion that the government served the people, and not the opposite.

Individual liberty has been replaced by a culture of restriction and victim-hood.  Despite past injustice, Americans have always strived to provide a society where people are able to realize their own destiny, free of the hindrance of tyrannical government.  We were founded on the belief that the ability to shape one’s future was a right worth fighting for.

Economic freedom has been replaced by a burdensome system of finance and regulation that has unjustly benefited banker, lobbyist, and politician alike.  The current system of government taxing, spending, borrowing, and transferring of wealth equates to theft of the entrepreneurial spirit of our country: both large and small.  In its natural state, our economy should allow us the right to build wealth and to sustain that wealth, free of policies and regulations that are contrary to the common good.

The Expanding Welfare State

A government big enough to give you everything you want is a government big enough to take from you everything you have. - President Gerald Ford

Today, a certain faction of the political elite have built their influence on the increasing power of the welfare state.  Our nation has been consumed by spending on these ridiculous and destructive programs.  We have let ourselves be bribed by the notion that among our “unalienable Rights” exist a desire for a certain standard of living that no government can guarantee.  The latest economic downturn has brought this truth to light.  You only have to look toward Europe to see the eventual outcome of what it would be like if the United States abandoned its Republican government and became a social democracy.

In 1966, Richard A. Cloward and Frances Fox Piven wrote an article entitled: “The Weight of the Poor: A Strategy to End Poverty.”  It outlined what would eventually be called the Cloward-Piven Strategy.  This political strategy was designed to institute a socialist democracy in the United States by expanding the number of people on welfare beyond the limits of what the system could support, causing a political crisis which would result in the establishment of a “guaranteed annual income” by the outright “redistribution of income.”

Cloward went on to co-found the National Welfare Rights Organization.  Active until 1975, this organization spawned the now-familiar Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now or ACORN.  ACORN was an organization dedicated to the expansion of the welfare state through the manipulation of the housing market, voter registration, and organized labor.  After uncovering evidence of widespread corruption within ACORN, Congress cut off funding for the association, causing it to fold earlier this year.

President Barack Obama defended ACORN in court during his time as a civil-rights lawyer and later went on to hold “leadership training sessions” for its staff.  As a community organizer, Obama has risen up from a background advocating a limitless welfare state.  As President, Obama has presided over the largest expansion of the welfare state in history.

The long arc of history exposes what choice we now face.

The Choice

In about one week, we will exercise our most important right: We will vote.

When you vote, remember that you are participating in one of the most important elections of our time.  Choose a candidate that will not simply become part of the political establishment.  By voting for candidates who will champion the values that our Republic was founded on, we may be able to set things right, and return us to the path of prosperity once again.  Never has the choice been more clear:

Should the United States abandon its Constitution and become a social democracy, or should we restore the Republic to its original intent?

As a General from the American Revolution once said:

Live free or die: Death is not the worst of evils.