Skip to comments.Progressivism: nonsense has been talked about the inalienable rights of individuals
Posted on 08/28/2011 8:23:12 AM PDT by ProgressingAmerica
In his book "Constitutional Government in the United States", President Woodrow Wilson has this to say:(page 16)
To inquire into such matters is to make intimate approach to the very essence of constitutional government; but we approach that essence still more intimately when we turn from the community, from the nation, and from the assembly which represents it, to the individual. No doubt a great deal of nonsense has been talked about the inalienable rights of the individual, and a great deal that was mere vague sentiment and pleasing speculation has been put forward as fundamental principle. The rights of man are easy to discourse of, may be very pleasingly magnified in the sentences of such constitutions as it used to satisfy the revolutionary ardor of French leaders to draw up and affect to put into operation; but they are infinitely hard to translate into practice. Such theories are never 'law, no matter what the name or the formal authority of the document in which they are embodied. Only that is 'law' which can be executed, and the abstract rights of man are singularly difficult of execution.
Time after time, Woodrow Wilson talked a very good game about liberty. But as I already pointed out here progressives have a very different definition of the word 'democracy' than you or I do. So too with 'liberty'. If "Only that is 'law' which can be executed, and the abstract rights of man are singularly difficult of execution" then a government such as what the founders created, in which people are actually free to live their lives and government keeps it's hands off, that can't exist. The government needs a little bit more liberty to execute positive laws, the only true kinds of laws. Woodrow Wilson also stated:(when referring to governmental checks and balances)
The trouble with the theory is that government is not a machine, but a living thing. ... No living thing can have its organs offset against each other, as checks, and live.
So you see, your government can't even survive if it doesn't have more controls and freedom to lord over your life, more 'positive liberties'. When Barack Obama said:
It didn't break free from the essential constraints that were placed by the Founding Fathers in the Constitution, at least as it's been interpreted, and the Warren Court interpreted in the same way, that generally the Constitution is a charter of negative liberties. Says what the states can't do to you. Says what the federal government can't do to you, but doesn't say what the federal government or state government must do on your behalf.
This is what he's getting at, all of these things are related. If a law cannot be executed, then it can't really be a law. A lack of a law is not a legitimate function of government. Woodrow Wilson also spoke about a government of negation, just as Obama did. Here:(page 284)
But I feel confident that if Jefferson were living in our day he would see what we see: that the individual is caught in a great confused nexus of all sorts of complicated circumstances, and that to let him alone is to leave him helpless as against the obstacles with which he has to contend; and that, therefore, law in our day must come to the assistance of the individual. It must come to his assistance to see that he gets fair play; that is all, but that is much. Without the watchful interference, the resolute interference, of the government, there can be no fair play between individuals and such powerful institutions as the trusts. Freedom to-day is something more than being let alone. The program of a government of freedom must in these days be positive, not negative merely. Well, then, in this new sense and meaning of it, are we preserving freedom in this land of ours, the hope of all the earth?
In one fell swoop, the entire meaning of liberty is turned on it's head. Yet knowing how progressives look at democracy, how they look at liberty, and how too they look at law, it "all makes sense". Talk of inalienable rights necessarily means government keeps it's hands off in a lot of very important ways. But to progressives, that sort of sentiment is nonsense.
Wilson was a big proponent of the “living Constitution” approach wherein the meaning of the Constitution was to be determined within the context of the “spirit of the age”. This “spirit” was, according to him, to be devined by an elite cohort especially trained for the purpose. Naturally, this elite would be made up of him and his progressive ilk, drawing their guidance from the Frankfurt school.
All the evils of this world - at least since the establishment of our Constitution - can be directly attributed to those who would destroy our republic. Slavery, Great Depression, WWI, WWW2, Korea, Vietnam, Overthrow of the Shah, North Korea’s nuclear program, the Middle East mess, and on and on.
Heading the list of evil men who have held the Presidency are WW, FDR, LBJ, JEC, WJC and BHO. These men are traitors to be despised as much as Benedict Arnold.
May God have mercy on them, for I will not.
Sometime in the next 5-15 years the 2nd amendment will prove to be the most important and, quite possibly, the most frequently employed amendment.
Tree of liberty, etc.
There exist two fundamentally irreconcilable philosophies of governance in the United States, and they will have it out, one way or another. Both cannot survive.
Dear Dipstick Beltway Progressives, Those of us in flyover country are not helpless, we are hard working, energetic, ingenious and clever. We want you to let us alone, really, really. Please go away. Thnx. Honestly, I am so tired of the plantation mentality of our Progressive Overlords. It's time to water the Tree of Liberty.
The American Dream is life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. An impenetrable defense and a sound civil justice system secure life and liberty. The pursuit of happiness means spiritual prosperity within the hazards and uncertainties of personal freedoms. It does not mean the government will ensure the protection of home values, college funds, retirement accounts, savings, executive severance packages, affordable healthcare, homeownership, lifetime employment, corporate wealth, political careers, and union benefits. Those are examples of a social welfare system become the dominate source of profligate spending and the acquisition of power. Because entitlements have been sacrosanct, they have grown astronomically since Lyndon Johnson introduced Medicare and Medicaid with his Great Society.
When Eisenhowers made his famous military industrial complex speech most fail to note he emphasized concern about a proper balance between the private and public economy. Eisenhower concern was the military, but in our time current government transfer payments are now nearly twice corporate net income. However, military security expenditures account for about one sixth of corporate profits.
Placing too much money, and therefore power, in the public sector endangers our personal liberties. Federal administrative laws and regulations are the soft underbelly of our Constitution. Under English common law, which serves as the basis for our Constitution, a person is innocent and not subject to the penalties of the law until proved guilty. Under administrative law like Roman civil law a person is subject to its penalties and restrictions until they discover a way to legally extricate themselves.
We must retain the understanding that pursuit of happiness means spiritual prosperity within the hazards and uncertainties of personal freedoms. Politicians continually offer enchanting material security, while obscuring subservience to rules vastly increasing their power. Their legislation attacks our Bill of Rights by confiscating speech and religious freedoms, personal life without access to courts and trial, and Ninth Amendment personal freedoms guaranteed, but not enumerated by our Constitution. Personal iberty must must be a condition precedent to commencing a debate on any legislation.
Individual rights are the means of subordinating society to moral law. When the rights of man are subordinated to some higher authority, either mystical or social, statist tyranny is the result.
To Progressives, democracy means convincing the rubes to follow you, and if they refuse, to force them to follow you through “progressively” more coercive means.
Very well said. Bump.
Unlike the English monarchy, we are not “subjects” of the sovereign. We are the sovereign. Unlike the Englishman, we did not have to wrest our rights away from the Crown and secure them through various documents such as the magna carta. Unlike the French socialists, we did not trade our natural individual rights for the superior security of “civil rights” and subordination to the benefit of the majority.
The tenth acknowledges that, as sovereigns, we delegated only certain power and authority over our actions to government. We allocated a specific portion to the federal government and a portion to the states and we retained the rest as our own individual business - our liberty free from external government.
Government being government has greatly enlarged itself beyond the limited powers we gave it. The federal government using the spending power and the “authority” of International agreements, has shredded the constitution, expanding far beyond the enumerated powers we gave it. Now the President is implementing International agreements administratively, by-passing Congress all together. The feds have constantly encroached upon the state's powers as well as pushed the boundaries of the Bill of Rights. The State, in turn, has regulated the individual’s domain out of existence until we approach a socialistic system. The tea party is the first movement of recent date to recognize that individuals joining together can once again exert the power of the sovereign without doing a total reset on the social compact.
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