Thursday, August 13, 2009

The Limits of Power

I've been trying to mostly avoid the political issues, as they can get somewhat tiresome. But I just read an excellent essay by Anthony Gregory titled "Obama, Bush, and the limits of Power," and thought it worth passing along.

Two key paragraphs:

Constitutions alone cannot limit government. The overwhelming bulk of what the federal government is engaged in, from imperial wars to drug prohibition, from Social Security to Medicare, is unauthorized by the Constitution, and yet they persist. What matters ultimately is the Constitution in the hearts and minds of the people. So long as the American public supports unconstitutional actions, such actions will commence. Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty, as Jefferson noted. The Constitution spells out great limits on the government, but without the support of the people, the document loses its teeth.


...given the stark similarities between both political parties, at least in their leadership, as well as the nature of government itself, it will not do for folks to condemn Obama as Big Brother and a would-be dictator while simultaneously defending torture, more war, and the Bush administration; nor does it make sense to oppose Bush and all he stood for while virulently backing Obama, who's brandishing Bush's executive power grabs, continuing his foreign policy, bailing out the same financial interests and seeking to control more areas of our lives. Can a reorientation of the American public, along more coherent ideological lines, be achieved? If ever there was a time for us to make our case, now is it.

It is not a Republican vs. Democrat problem. It is not a Right vs. Left problem. It is a freedom vs. government power issue. It seems like more and more are waking up to this reality... But it is too early to see whether enough are coming to terms with this to make a difference.

1 comment:

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