Rocker and Sage

The Quintessential Optimist and the Quintessential Cynic - Working Together to Build a Better America.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

The Constitution is dead... Long live the Constitution!

Every once in a while in conversation about the problems plaguing our beloved country I will sally forth with the proposal that all of these so-called problems could be quickly solved by putting the country back on what I have come to call "Constitutional footing"; that is by actually applying its true principles to the present day problems that we are facing. Usually, I am met with the response "the Constitution is dead" and that any attempts to apply it according to its "original intent" especially in regards to limiting the power of public officials would be futile, and that any arguments to the contrary could be classified from the ridiculous to the screwball in their character.
The Bible says that "a prophet is not without honor except in his own country". This should not be misconstrued to mean in any way that his prophesy is erroneous, most especially when the argument against his pronouncements are as non-sensical as "the Constituiton is dead".
Quite obviously, the Constitution is anything but "dead" in respect to the application of political power that effects the lives of Americans on a day by day basis. To the contrary, it is very much alive and active in regards to the election process, the Supreme Court's decisions, the President's command of the armed forces and so on. Every happening in these areas is subject to its authority, and procedures according to its dictates in the original form.
True enough, many of these so-called "procedures" done in the name of the Constitution are quite unconstitutional. But my point here is that there is no one who would dare seek public office at either the state or federal level that would ever admit that he is acting outside of its dictates in terms of anything procedural in regards to his own behavior as an elected official. Even those public officials who do in fact flout it in practice
nonetheless acknowledge the Constitution to be "the supreme law of the land"(Art.6 Sec.2) which everyone, including them, must follow. They invoke the Constitution as the source of their authority, and make all claims that their actions are fully consistent with it, they swear an oath of allegiance to it as public servants of its dictates. That these acts are in many cases, acts of self-deception, hypocrisy, and perjury does not diminish the character of this document as "the supreme law" in any way.
The fact that criminals violate laws does not in one iota negate those laws.A good case in point is the ongoing exodus of Mexicans into the US "in search of a better life" that feel that the end justifies the means in spite of any violation of immigration laws and statutes to the contrary.
So, how is it then that the powers that the Constitution grants to officials is fully alive and operative, whereas the limitations that it places on that power, also written in plain language, and no less in force, are supposedly "dead"? How can it be that those in power can pick and choose that which empowers them, and ignore that which limits them?
On what theory of law, or constitutional government can officials enforce the parts of the law that grant them power, while ignoring, or refusing to honor the parts of the very same law that restrains and limits that power?
If this is in fact true in the practical sense that "the Constitution is dead" in regards to its limitations on governmental power, then how can anything that public officials do ever be legally wrong? If public officials refuse to obey the Constitutional parts that limit their power, and need not do so because that part is "dead", then how can American citizens determine whether what is being done by them is in the best interests of the republic? If the Constitution is "dead" as to its limitations, then no public official violates his "oath or affirmation, to support this Constitution"(Art.6, Sec.3) when he disregards those supposedly ineffective restraints.
So, it can only follow, that if the Constitution is indeed "dead" as to its limitations, then it is "dead" to the individual rights that it guarantees, because those rights establish the very limitations on government power that are being violated.If, on the basis of the excuse that the Constitution is "dead", Americans lie supinely on their backs obeying the dictates of these officials whenever they break the statutes of the Constitution, then by their own affirmation they are admitting that those who succeed in seizing control of the reigns of government can do whatever pleases them, whenever it pleases them. These officials are thus accountable only to their own designs of government as they wish it to be.
When this finally, and fully becomes the accepted norm, the age of the coming dictatorship in America will have arrived.
In short, if "we the people" concede the fight to come, and make no mistake about it, we are in a fight to the finish,that the Constitution is "dead", then we will have given away the high ground, and put ourselves at our enemies mercy.
The so-called "American Revolution",was not really a revolution in the best sense of that word, but rather a war of independence from England, and not from the basic precepts of English law, but rather from the rule of a system that was so easily corrupted by usurpations, and tyranny.
This, of course, was the result of a traditional political precedent that was the norm, which is not at all the case today where the establishment's usurpations are exercises of powers that were never delegated to them by 'we the people" and which no public official "sworn to the oath" may thus lay claim to.
This being true,then we find ourselves in the unenviable position of being our own worst enemies having elected the worst possible miscreants to the highest public offices.Thusly, voters ignorant of "the supreme law of the land", have simply provided further evidence for History's teaching that unrestrained democracy leads straight to tyranny, and when has it not?
The task ahead, for those that would "keep" the republic, is not as daunting as the founding brothers, for they had to create something new from scratch, without a map to follow in unknown territory. Whereas, "we the people" merely have to stand our ground and keep what is rightfully ours already.
This,then, raises the even more profound question of whether if it may be conceded that the Constitution is indeed "dead" in such a way as to be beyond revival, or preservation, that it also must be conceded that the concept of constitutionalism is "dead" as well. Is government in the only worthwhile understanding of the term, that is, "organized political power controlled by the laws of nature, and God" impossible and therefore "dead" also?
Any patriot must reject this conclusion outright without further consideration along with the premise on which it rests.What is in fact "dead" is not the Constitution, or constitutionalism, as these are the embodiment of the ideals of every man in every place and time, but rather the defenders of the faith in the eternal truths that they convey. And not because they even believe them to be wrong, or inapplicable to the times, but simply because they lack the courage to stand up for the way of life that the founders of this country left for them.
This, however, does not have to be a fatal condition. Regular Americans once had courage, and believed in the greatness of the founders vision, and they can again. It requires only enough energy and determination to overcome the political laziness that gives up because that is the easiest thing to do. If Americans cannot muster up enough gumption to overcome that sloth then the Constitution is "dead", and so is America-Long live the Constitution!
The Revolution will not be televised.


  • At 8:23 AM , Blogger RightWingRocker said...

    Sage, this is one of your best works ever, bar none...

    especially given that you resisted your tendency to single out President Bush.

    I've long awaited a hard-hitting, powerful piece from you that recognized the true source of corruption - the Americans who elect these clowns to public office, either naively or actively.

    Americans had better get about the task of reading the Constitution and understanding its limits so that they can peoperly assert the rights it guarantees. The alternative is the true death of the Constitution. Every Senator, Cogressman, Justice, and President who swears to uphold the Constitution should be held accountable to that oath, and yes I do include "my buddy Bush" in that.

    It's a tough choice that we have. We can either elect Democrats who are honest about their socialist tendencies despite their unconstitutionality, or we can elect Republicans who care more about getting along with the Democrats than they do implementing the Constitution.

    Third parties? Please. They'd just do the same thing. It's clearly time for the Revolution, and it must take place in the hearts of the American people.



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