James Madison and the original Federalists, where are they when we need them?
Bob Barr argues that a tremendous and dangerous growth of government has taken place in recent decades. He points to what he says is the unprecedented power of the executive branch, the growth of federal laws and regulations, and the massive levels of federal spending, all as evidence that it's time for the country to look back on the writings of James Madison and the original Federalists and to benefit from their wisdom.
Robert L. Barr, Jr. is an attorney and a former member of the United States House of Representatives from Georgia. Barr represented the 7th District of Georgia, from 1995 to 2003.
Barr is now a Life Member of, and on the National Committee for, the United States Libertarian Party.
George Dobbins is Vice President of Programs at the Commonwealth Club of California.
Former presidential candidate Bob Barr agrees with "torture memo" author John Yoo that a wartime president can assume extraordinary powers, but argues laws must be in place to expressly limit that power.
"We should never go down...that slippery slope of a President saying he is above the law."
Early U.S. political party that advocated a strong central government. Federalist was first used in 1787 to describe supporters of the Constitution of the United States, with its emphasis on a federal union; the Federalist papers was a series of 85 papers (178788) published by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay to persuade New York voters to ratify the Constitution. By the 1790s other policies defined the party, including Hamilton's fiscal program, creation of a central bank, a tariff system, favourable treatment for U.S. shipping, friendship with Britain, and neutrality in foreign affairs. The party elected John Adams as president in 1796 but was unable to organize effectively after 1801. It lost favour for its opposition to the Embargo Act and the War of 1812; an internal split by the New England faction (seeHartford Convention) further weakened the party. By the 1820s most of its original principles had been adopted by the opposition Democratic Party, and the Federalist Party disappeared. Notable Federalists included John Marshall, Rufus King, Timothy Pickering, and Charles Pinckney.
Mark Sullivan, ... little or no Capital? You mentioned in a post in another thread that you live only on Social Security. Could you not save any money to support yourself over the 50 or so years of your working life?
First, little or no capital is a fact, not bitterness. You really have a very serious problem dealing with fact. I preseume from the constancy of its expression in your writing that it is an intellectual short-coming of yours.
You seem to be unable to recognize the obvious.
Every employer I had was well informed I was college educated. None wanted to pay me for that and put it to a mutual benefit. They found other profitable (to them) uses for my labor. My fellow Americans rewarded my hard work of acquiring that education with a draft notice to go to Vietnam and defend as cannon fodder the poor investment risks American corporations had taken there rather than let them suffer with the vicissitudes of the market and risk. One does not fight economic theory (alleged communism) with guns. I risked the hard work of becoming educated and suffered the vicissitudes of that risk. I know it intimately.
I am just one American who has been adversely affected by the lies of bi-partisan capitalism. I just happen to be able to address those lies in ways that apologists such as yourself find uncomfortable.
And once again in your response you have not provided any valid points to paying wages of poverty beyond the greater profit to the capitalist. Nor have you shown how wages of poverty or enriching a very few (very few Americans profited playing in the latest casino; millions were too busy working as employees and were not prepared to act as capitalists * and now are out of work and capital and homes) promotes the welfare of the nation. Why don't you argue "Wages of poverty promote the general welfare of the nation."? Because you know that wages of poverty are a drain on the general welfare of the nation while being a benefit for a very few, and you can't admit to that and defend your personal greed.
Just incidentally, on National Business Report (PBS) tonight, corporate fraud (in the billions) of Medicare was a feature story. I suggest I made that point in response to one of your attempts at misdirection and this report merely supports the obviousness of my earlier argument.
Speaking of argument, you really have not presented one, only feeble attempts to justify a personal greed which has given you property and capital derived " off the hard work of others ", for even on your own personal moral scale " far less greedy " is still greedy. And that is obvious.
Janis was right, ya know. Freedom is just another word for nothing left to lose.
BTW, the problem with the Federalist Society is that they want to interpret the Constitution 'in the language of the day' based on the writings of those commonly held as 'founding fathers'. A fine premise except that they do not want to interpret the Constitution with the history of the day, e,g,, with corporations being limited in many ways such as non-ownership of other corporations, with the fact that the nascent nation was agrarian with a large frontier where an individual could go and gain real property through his own taking and labor. Of course, those with capital bought and sold people in slavery who did the work and had the largest estates of property. Today, we are an industrialized Nation, no longer agrarian. We have new corporate structures which did not exist. Corporations were recognized as a fictional person for purposes of suit. Now SCOTUS is moving toward legitimizing the margin note of a law clerk in Santa Clara County v. Southern Pacific Railroad Company. No doubt you have read the case to become informed as I have. And you are no doubt intimate with Woodrow Wilson's Educational Model. And it is this avoidance of the reality and that the Constitution is what the people (who were allowed to participate - largely property owning white males) accepted and by that acceptance did give birth to this nation. And the First Amendment was put in in part because, while many of the people were socially religious, there were many religions and there were atheists, agnostics and 'free thinkers' as well. America is a secular nation by its structure. It tolerates the weirdly superstitious (" ... or prohibiting the free exercise thereof ").
*You no doubt understand and are intimate with the Wilson Educational Model
Contemplate me teaching American history in your child's public school.
Have an enlightening day worshipping your capital and property.
As much as I have enjoyed our discussion, I feel it is self indulgent of me to use this site to argue with one other poster. These will be my last points.
-If you believe Capitalism is undemocratic, fine. Let's assume it is not democratic - that "we the people" do not have a say in what a private business does to improve its business. So what? The same is true with corporations. Personally, if "we the people" got to vote on everything that corporations do, the stock market would not exist at all. You've not made any case that "we the people" should have any say in what businesses do, other than your opinion, based on a neo-Marxist, collectivist bastardization of the Constitution. I believe Capitalism - free markets, private property, voluntary cooperation with allocation of resources done by the free market, supply/demand and individuals free to dispose of their hard earned private propety as they see fit - is a necessary, though not sufficient, condition for democracy to be just to the most people and raise the standard of living of the common man. Please name a non-Calitalist nation that has a higher standard of living for the common man than what Capitalism has built. The poorest nations of the world are NOT Calitalist. The poorest, most desperate, most violent, most unjust and most aggressive nations have all been and continue to be non-Capitalistic.
-Your denial of my ownership of my home and other property is irrational and has nothing to do with flesh and blood human beings, the systems of finance and government and the rule of Law. You know clearly who holds the title on a person's home. You are playing your metaphysical, silly games to create a reality that does not exist.
-General Motors has failed and lost market share because its products did not appeal to enough customers and because union bosses and selfish, materialistic members of those unions pushed too far. Past management of General Motors, who agreed to all of these unsustainable wage and benefit contracts for workers and retirees are to blame. They, like politicians and most Americans, knew they would not be held to account when the shit hit the fan. They would be retired or dead when the bills became due. The Baby Boomers are doing it to my kids now. Let's assume that GM kept all jobs in the United States and raised the prices of their cars to pay for all of this and never reduced the work force as they perpetually lost market share to Honda, Toyota, Nissan, Hyundai, etc. They would not exist at all. They would be unable to compete. My guess is you would insist on tariffs on Japanese, Korean and other imports to make sure the American companies did not have to compete. I have owned 1 American car and will never own another. It was junk. Do I care about the workers who built this junk? Do they care about me? Also, I opposed the bailout of General Motors. It was nothing but a cynical ploy by Obama to pay back his union boss supporters for all of the billions in union dues that have been diverted to democrat political causes. They should go bankrupt, restructure and start fresh. If they cannot compete, they should go out of business. The same is true of the business I am in.
-May I assume by your bitterness that you own little or no Capital? You mentioned in a post in another thread that you live only on Social Security. Could you not save any money to support yourself over the 50 or so years of your working life? Even $50 - $100 per month, invested in an S & P 500 index fund would have compounded and grown to an enormous sum of money by the time you retired. Building wealth is not just for the already rich. That is a class envy motivated lie. It simply takes desire and discipline. My Father taught me a lesson when I got my first job as a newspaper delivery boy. He sat me down at the kitchen table and put three quarters, two dimes and a nickle on the table. Sliding a dime and a nickle away from the remaining change, he told me, "Mark, imagine this is a dollar you have earned selling your papers. if you can invest a dime and a nickel out of every dollar you earn now and throughout your life, you will retire a wealthy man and be able to live with dignity and have options about how to live out your final years. Heck, you may even be able to leave a pile of dough for your children and grandchildren." Even as a middle class man, it was never hard to do what he taught me, even though the temptation not to was strong. I have also encouraged my children to pay their own way and take their future into their own hands, as Social security will not be around when they retire. The Baby Boomers - the wealthiest cohort of humans in history, have squandered not only their own future, but that of my children. My children will be paying for all of the arrogance and selfishness of the Bay Boomers, of which I am among the last. I worry about my children's future. They will have a large portion of their hard earned wealth confiscated through the coercive power of government to pay the bills for the irresponsible Baby Boomers who, despite the prosperity and peace their parents left them, just had to experiment and innovate and play around in an attempt to create an egalitarian paradise, throwing away the hard earned freedoms and wealth, culture and traditions that they inherited.
-I do not hate society. "Society" is a fiction. Another anthropomorphism, which assumes that all humans are in lock step. I do not respect many people and feel no obligation to help them when they have not helped themselves, despite being able to. Those who, due to no fault of their own, need assistance, have my support to the degree I am able to, but not until my family is cared for.
-I am far less greedy and far less attached to wealth than the multitude who live off the hard work of others. I can think of nothing greedier than a person demanding that the property of others be confiscated and used to pay for his education, food, health care, retirement, etc. The true materialists and greedy are those who do not pay their own way, seeing material comfort as a right, to be paid by others.
Mark Sullivan, " The best we can do is to care for ourselves and those for whom we are responsible first, then care for those in need to the degree we can.
No Mark. What you suggest is limited by your addiction to capital, the concept that what you have is a divine entitlement, and an adamant refusal to consider other options.
Holding a broader vision, We the people, working together as a nation for welfare of the nation and on the defense and of the nation and its Constitution, can come up with a solution for ending poverty based on the purposes of our government as set out in the Constitution. It may not be a solution that you like personally, but it will be a solution, derived from the people, for ending poverty.
You have not refuted that capitalism is anti-democratic.
You have not refuted that corporations, which are just tools of capitalists, are undemocratic in their very structure.
You argue emotions, you argue your addiction, but you cannot refute the cold hard facts about capitalism.
Look at how General Motors, for one example of capital in action, has insulted and injured the American workers who built their products and provided their stockholders capital growth, by taking those jobs from American workers and sending them to Mexico and China and other foreign shores. That capital removal has drained the general welfare. And the capitalists have added further insult by ripping off American tax payers vis a vis the "special interests" bailout. Of course, you will choose, once again, the safety you find in your willful ignorance.
Capital has no national obligation, as I have consistently held, and as you have failed to refute.
If you "own" a piece of real estate (real property), from whence does your title come? The government of we the people. It did not come from a 2000 year old Jewish Zombie or his alleged but unproven daddy. There is nothing divine about that title. Got it!?!
You have offered no argument for your position other than a personal greed to satisfy your addiction and a personal hatred of the society in which you live and the Constitution (the sole thing Americans hold in common) of that society.
Can you name a society at any time, anywhere that did not have poverty? Do you really think it can be legislated away? Hasn't the UNited States spent trillions to fight its "war on poverty?" I admire your idealism, but you will die a sad person, because poverty will always be with us. The best we can do is to care for ourselves and those for whom we are responsible first, then care for those in need to the degree we can. Your ability to see poverty and be sad or angry is admirable. IN fact, most of us have it - even we stupid Capitalists, who have been the most generous people in history and have adopted a system that has given the common man the most comfort and the highest quality of life in history. Your solution seems to be something like, "From each according to his abilities; to each according to his needs." Hmmmm, where have we heard that? You seem to favor a levelling, egalitarian "democracy" which is a whirlpool to the bottom. Remember, at the time the Constitution was written, there was no universal suffrage. I still believe it has been a huge mistake to give everyone 18 and older the vote. It has lead to this tyrannical impulse you display to "take from the rich and give to the poor." You see to see government coercion as a tool of "the people" to take what they believe they are entitled to.
When you say, "Capitalism is anti-democratic," do you mean that we don't vote on whether or not people get a share of my Capital, you are right. Capitalism is purely voluntary. It involves agreements between parties. You either want to purchase my good or service at the price I ask or you do not. You seem to believe that if you want my good or service but believe it is too expensive (medical care, for example), "the people" should be able to vote to have it taken from me and given for no profit or less profit. That is theft, my friend. I'll take a voluntary, cooperative system over "democracy" at the point of a gun any day.
Mark Sullivan you wrote, "According to the enumerated powers, the Federal givernment is to provide for the common defense, maintain infrastructure protect our rights with an independent judiciary."
You are correct that the first three Articles of the Constitution delineate enumerated powers . And last of the vaunted Bill of Rights, Amendment X addresses that very issue:
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people .
What is there about people and where the States (individual and national) derive their authority? The authority of our government does not come from some extra-natural source from nowhere, as certain American religious extremists would have you believe. It is stated clearly in the Constitution, the social contract of America.
We the people are responsible for the powers of gevernance which are not enumerated to any of the particular branches in the first three Articles. We the people retain those powers. We the people declared that when Amendment X was included into the Constitution. How can you not understand that?
KAPITAL MACHT FREI
Man you are so attached to the burdens of property, including the moral burdens, that you have no chance ever of being free. You sold your freedom for the pursuit of capital. That is why you make the shallow argument which displays a willful ignorance of the written word and the reality. And that willful ignorance in pursuit of capital is why America is in failure.
The Constitution is political theory put to practice. It is the rules by which we conduct the governance of our society. It is not economic theory, nor is an economic defined therein.
Capitalism is economic theory.
Capitalism has the sole requirement of capital.
Capitalism's sole goal is more capital.
What is there about that which you can refute?
Since you ask, my beef with capitalism , as you call it, has already been stated and stated clearly and accurately without refutation by you. If you care to address my beef, please do so as to enlighten me to my failure to understand what capitalism is, since I have once again made clear what is necessary for capitalism, let me restate a very important fact about capitalism to which I am sincerely hopeful you will enlighten me as to any error as to this fact which is at the core of my beef with capitalism for, unregulated or misregulated, capitalism, the economic, is against the premises and substance of our Constitution, our society.
Fact, Capitalism, at its core, is anti-democratic, corporations are, at their core, undemocratic.
When you present your argument about what capitalism provides, why do you fail to mention the poverty of tens of millions of working Americans who are provided wages of poverty by capitalists? Those wages of poverty do not come from government, only the legislation which was promoted and paid for by the capitalists and the votes of the capitalists within Congress. Working men and women would not knowingly enact legislation which ensured them that capitalists can legally pay wages which ensure Americans a life of working to live in poverty and which deny them the sole thing necessary to participate in capitalism as capitalists. Consider the Wilsonian Model of Education's role in the continuation of poverty, the educational model used by America for close to a century, when you refute that.
Here is another capitalist lie which the capitalist press echoes, a number (lately in the millions) of jobs were lost . Refute this fact, the jobs were not lost, they were withdrawn from the market by the owners of the jobs, the capitalists; the workers could not lose something they did not own.
Perhaps the economic should rightly be called 'sapitalism' because it makes SAPS (Stupid Ass PersonS) of the majority of American voters who fall for its lies election after election, who keep electing from just two sold-out, majority parties which do not represent them. Just look to the Americans who lost money in the latest rip-off by capitalism, the majority of investors.
What the heck do you think they mean when they talk about a systemic failure ? The system referred to is the economic system of capitalism that is the failure.
According to the enumerated powers, the Federal givernment is to provide for the common defense, maintain infrastructure protect our rights with an independent judiciary. That's about it. That's all the Constitution says. The preamble is a preamble. It was written at a time when people educated their children by themselves, did not have medical insurance, and basically would be ashamed to demand that the wealth of others be confiscated and divided up among those who cannot or will not go out and earn their own.
I've read other posts of yours and responded to them as well. I appreciatwe this dialogue. What are you really after? What is your beef with Capitalism? It has provided you with a computer more powerful than the one that sent men to the moon, so that we can have this conversation. It has provided you with the highest standard of living ever known to mankind. (And no, I do not see the dependency culture of Western Europe as a higher standard of living than I enjoy here.) As a believer in freedom, hown can you not see the impersonal forces of the market working so beautifully to provide all of this? The indivisual, pursuing happiness as he sees it, using his God given talents and wealth to meet the needs of his fellow man through a desire to improve his station in life. This voluntary system is beautiful, in my opinion, and makes sure tha resources are going to the most efficient needs and desires of "We the People." All attempts to regulate, tax and otherwise interfere with this process has lead to disaster. (anti-trust laws are arguably a public good). Which person or persons has the intellect, wisdom, virtue and moral insight to regulate the day to day economic activities of 300 million+ individuals? Every time it has been tried, it has failed.
What is it you are after? Are you really a socialist at heart? Do you believe my property can be redistributed as long as "We the People" want it to be? Please read THE ROAD TO SERFDOM by Friederich Hayek. It will be good for your soul.
@Mark Sullivan, "Your claim that the Minimum wage laws are "legislated pverty" [sic] makes no sense. The left is the only side urging ther [sic] passage and maintenance of a "minimum wage.""
Mark Sullivan, I am sorry that you cannot comprehend (makes no sense to you) how a legislated minimum wage is legislated poverty. Perhaps you should be paid the minimum wage to gain an understanding.
Are you suggesting that those you identify as "the left", "the only side urging ther [sic] passage and maintenance of a 'minimum wage'", are not capitalists? Please provide facts to support such an outrageous claim.
Name the conservatives who have introduced legislation requiring that wages must be at least a living wage for a modern capitalist society. A living wage; a wage which allows the earner thereof the basic necessities of a modern society which includes food, lodging (and insurance thereon), clothing, health care (or insurance therefor) transportation (and insurance thereon) and sufficient other wage to provide the capital to participate in the capitalist society as a capitalist and not a debtor or economic slave.
And do inform us, please, of that which you are trying to conserve.
Just how limited is your view of the purpose of government considering that the purpose of American government is set forth at the very beginning of the Constitution and the authority of American government lies with We The People. Often called the preamble it is part and parcel of the Constitution.
When you attack the government of America you attack We The People as if you were not one of the people responsible for electing the elected officers of government. If you are not engaged vis a vis the political disengagement of failing one's civic responsibilities to participate in an informed manner, then you are the problem.
Labeling a capitalist either left or right demonstrates your bias to dogma and a failure to be informed.
You have no more than 24 hours in any one day to live your life. What false sense of entitlement makes you think your time is any more valuable than another's?
Originally Posted by Mark Sullivan
The failures in the planning and aftermeath of Hurrican Katrina were GOVERNMENT FAILURES.
Thank You, that's exactly my point! We need government, because the "Free Market" does not solve everything!!!
The failures in the planning and aftermeath of Hurrican Katrina were GOVERNMENT FAILURES. Wal Mart, a publicly owned corporation, has been commended for its generosity, organization and actions post Katrina. Can we say the same about the Governor of Louisiana or Mayor Nagin? I think not.
Your claim that the Minimum wage laws are "legislated pverty" makes no sense. The left is the only side urging ther passage and maintenance of a "minimum wage." Conservatives believe the government should not be involved in the contracting of employment between the worker and the employer. Again, you say the same things and quote the Constution every time you post, but you do not appear to understand what our nation is founded on. You seem to favor anarchy, where all is open to a poll of the citizens and that citizens should take the private property of others and that this is somehow democratic. I'm sorry, you are plain wrong.
The "Citizens United" case was decided correctly in my view. IU am almost a free speech absolutist. Thered is no way anyone can give a positive rationale for government having the right to cut off political speech. Without free speech, we have nothing.
If men were angels, no government would be necessary. If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary. In framing a government which is to be administered by men over men, the great difficulty lies in this: you must first enable the government to control the governed; and in the next place oblige it to control itself. - James Madison, Federalist 51
Food for libertarian thought.