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Did the Founding Fathers Screw Up?
prospect.org ^ | September 26, 2011 | Harold Meyerson

Posted on 09/28/2011 7:19:50 PM PDT by MontaniSemperLiberi

The country needs and, unless I mistake its temper, the country demands bold, persistent experimentation," Franklin Roosevelt declared as he campaigned for the presidency in the spring of 1932. "It is common sense to take a method and try it. If it fails, admit it frankly and try another. But above all, try something."

Most of the experiments Roosevelt tried to rebuild the economy once he took office encountered fierce opposition. But his closing admonition -- try something -- transcends our political particularities. It's an affirmation of a specifically American common sense, a statement of our national inclination to action, an affirmation of the pragmatism that remains the country's signal contribution to philosophy. In times of trouble, try something. Who could be against that?

Yet, three years into the worst recession since Roosevelt's time, a countercurrent, every bit as American as our bias for action, has swept over us. Twenty-five million Americans are either unemployed or underemployed, and the average duration of joblessness stands at record highs. Consumers are too deep in debt to consume; our producers produce and our investors invest abroad. To remedy all this, the federal government today tries ... nothing.

(Excerpt) Read more at prospect.org ...


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Government
KEYWORDS: constitution; madison
Well a Liberal Progressive (but I repeat myself) gets it. At least partially.

Our system government was not created to do great things in the midst of controversy. It was designed to stop legislation unless there was general agreement. When we disagree, it (should) becomes a government Patrick Henry would be happy with.

It was designed to do big things when there was general agreement, i.e. fight wars, settle the West, etc. When we agree it (should) becomes a government Hamilton would be happy with.

Also, it was meant to thwart an executive who wanted to do things on his own. Unfortunately our founders never though congress would willingly give up it's power to the executive.

1 posted on 09/28/2011 7:19:51 PM PDT by MontaniSemperLiberi
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To: MontaniSemperLiberi
“Most of the experiments Roosevelt tried to rebuild the economy once he took office encountered fierce opposition. But his closing admonition — try something — transcends our political particularities. It's an affirmation of a specifically American common sense, a statement of our national inclination to action, an affirmation of the pragmatism that remains the country's signal contribution to philosophy. In times of trouble, try something. Who could be against that?”

I am.

A great number of problems we face today are BECAUSE of that imbecile FDR, and his “let's push this button and see what it does” mentality. Today we know what most of those buttons did.

2 posted on 09/28/2011 7:26:16 PM PDT by I cannot think of a name
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To: MontaniSemperLiberi

Can’t really blame the founders for the idiots of today. The people themselves hold the bulk of the blame.


3 posted on 09/28/2011 7:29:32 PM PDT by cripplecreek (A vote for Amnesty is a vote for a permanent Democrat majority. ..Choose well.)
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To: I cannot think of a name

Yeah, Oblablah is trying to prove that he can make communism work, when glorious USSR did not succeed.
It took 70 years to overturn it, are we in another “experiment”????


4 posted on 09/28/2011 7:30:24 PM PDT by Leo Carpathian (fffffFRrrreeeeepppeeee-ssed!)
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To: I cannot think of a name

I like Coolidge and his do little attitude.

In fact with the growth of the FEMA monstrosity, we see why he was right to let the people take care of themselves through times of adversity.


5 posted on 09/28/2011 7:32:21 PM PDT by cripplecreek (A vote for Amnesty is a vote for a permanent Democrat majority. ..Choose well.)
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To: I cannot think of a name

I like Coolidge and his do little attitude.

In fact with the growth of the FEMA monstrosity, we see why he was right to let the people take care of themselves through times of adversity.


6 posted on 09/28/2011 7:32:32 PM PDT by cripplecreek (A vote for Amnesty is a vote for a permanent Democrat majority. ..Choose well.)
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To: cripplecreek

The founders had it exactly right, and that is the way it should remain, period!!! End of story!!!


7 posted on 09/28/2011 7:32:55 PM PDT by JLAGRAYFOX
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To: MontaniSemperLiberi

I must admit, I skimmed the article. Unless I missed it, the author didn’t discuss the most important dynamic of all in any analysis of our nation’s founding—the tension between the state and its people.


8 posted on 09/28/2011 7:34:25 PM PDT by reasonisfaith (Governor Palin: "I'm not for sale." It's true. Watch The Undefeated.)
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To: Leo Carpathian
It took 70 years to overturn it, are we in another “experiment”????

LOL 100 years ago we had idiots like George Bernard Shaw explaining that communism just wasn't being done right or blaming its failures on its victims.
9 posted on 09/28/2011 7:35:26 PM PDT by cripplecreek (A vote for Amnesty is a vote for a permanent Democrat majority. ..Choose well.)
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To: MontaniSemperLiberi

There seems to be a lot of people coming out these last few days questioning the very nature of America’s constitutional form of government.

A sitting governor floats a trial balloon on suspending congressional elections, a former Obama budget chief says we need “less democracy”, and now this...

It’s no secret to anyone with two working brain cells to rub together that 2012 is shaping up to be a major disaster for the Dems. Cynical and suspicious person that I am, I am also starting to wonder if there is not a building movement in the Democrat and Liberal power structures to change the rules — in their favor, naturally.

Since that pesky Constitution is in the way, why not...

Scary, my friends. Very scary indeed.


10 posted on 09/28/2011 7:37:14 PM PDT by Ronin (If we were serious about using the death penalty as a deterrent, we would bring back public hangings)
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To: MontaniSemperLiberi

Green weenie org. Progressive, liberal...not credible.


11 posted on 09/28/2011 7:37:26 PM PDT by Rudder (The Main Stream Media is Our Enemy---get used to it.)
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To: reasonisfaith

No he did not. Not precisely.

His assumption is that the people should be ruled and improved by the state and his conclusion is that the constitution gets in the way.

What he fails to understand is that we are made in the image of our creator and we cannot be improved by our government.


12 posted on 09/28/2011 7:37:42 PM PDT by MontaniSemperLiberi (Moutaineers are Always Free)
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To: reasonisfaith

The success of our nation has nothing to do with what the government can do for the people.

Our success depends on avoiding big government and crony capitalism. In other words, breaking up the permanent political class when it gets out of hand.


13 posted on 09/28/2011 7:39:09 PM PDT by reasonisfaith (Governor Palin: "I'm not for sale." It's true. Watch The Undefeated.)
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To: MontaniSemperLiberi
Another Roosevelt (Teddy) had other ideas about how to "fix" society, by force if need be.

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us
14 posted on 09/28/2011 7:40:54 PM PDT by cripplecreek (A vote for Amnesty is a vote for a permanent Democrat majority. ..Choose well.)
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To: Ronin

Yep.


15 posted on 09/28/2011 7:41:04 PM PDT by MontaniSemperLiberi (Moutaineers are Always Free)
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To: MontaniSemperLiberi

Yes, and his failure to understand this is more than shameful.


16 posted on 09/28/2011 7:41:09 PM PDT by reasonisfaith (Governor Palin: "I'm not for sale." It's true. Watch The Undefeated.)
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To: Ronin

Two such trial balloons in a month.
In politics, there are no coincidences..........


17 posted on 09/28/2011 7:44:32 PM PDT by Red Badger ("Treason doth never prosper.... What's the reason? Why if it prosper, none dare call it treason.")
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To: MontaniSemperLiberi
The problem, Cutler concluded, was the Constitution. More bluntly, the Founding Fathers got it wrong.

No they didn't. In a free society that is compatible with the nature of man as a rational being,with a just government that respects natural rights,the proper function of government is to protect and preserve those rights from both internal and external threats, protect and enforce contracts, and to settle disputes with a judicial system.The government is a servant of the people not its ruler.Anything more than that is tyranny. The economic problems of the country would work themselves out naturally if the government would stop intervening and just allow individuals the freedom to make decisions that promote their own self interest.

18 posted on 09/28/2011 7:46:43 PM PDT by mjp ((pro-{God, reality, reason, egoism, individualism, natural rights, limited government, capitalism}))
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To: mjp

“natural rights”

Exactly. Progressives do not believe in natural rights let alone natural law because they do not believe in God.


19 posted on 09/28/2011 7:48:46 PM PDT by MontaniSemperLiberi (Moutaineers are Always Free)
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To: Ronin

We, the people are our own worst enemies!!! Why??? Yesterday the Governor of North Carolina, Ms. Bev Purdue called out to cancel the upcoming congressional elections in November, 2012 so that congress can get on, unfettered,with solving the problems of the nation without holding those “nasty”, unecessary elections. The USA in our history, has seen wars, depressions, attacks on our nation. etc., but....we have never postponed a federal election. And...we should not now, even entertain such a horrible suggestion as came from the mouth of Ms. Purdue. Now.....realist that I am, this utterance from Gov. Perdue came from somewhere other then her brain, as this was not the first hint at doing away with Democracy and the Constitution from Obama’s Democrat Party. This came, IMHO, directly from the man in the White House, Barack Hussein Obama!!! But....we cannot prove that!!! However, we have the utterer of such trash talk, Ms. Perdue. Instead of just sitting around, complaining of our diminishing freedom and liberty and doing nothing, one would think the voters of North Carolina would rise up and force Gov. Perdue to resign, and if she refuses, they should impeach her immediately according to the laws of North Carolina!!! I don’t see that happening and am saddened deeply for the lack of action from the citizens and voters of NC!!! When I think of how many American military folks, both men and women fought and gave their lives to establish our country, protect and defend it so that we could remain free and determine our own destiny through free and repetitive elections, I am utterly disgusted with my fellow Americans that reside in North Carolina!!!


20 posted on 09/28/2011 8:02:10 PM PDT by JLAGRAYFOX
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To: MontaniSemperLiberi
Libs are such hypocrites. Roosevelt one of them. He says "if it fails, admit it and move on." Libs never admit they failed. They never say they were wrong. Instead they say: "we had good intentions. You're too stupid to know in theory it works. If we only had more money it would have worked. If they would have worked with us/compromised/met us halfway it would have worked. I had nothing to do with it, that was baby. " Any number of these get tossed out instead of "I was wrong. I screwed up." they never say that. That's the fatal flaw they hope you'll never pick up on.
21 posted on 09/28/2011 8:04:09 PM PDT by Secret Agent Man (I'd like to tell you, but then I'd have to kill you.)
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To: I cannot think of a name

“But his closing admonition — try something — transcends our political particularities.”

When every effort is aimed at expansion of government’s role, that isn’t experimentation, that’s an agenda being pressed.

It was liberalism under FDR,
It’s liberalism under OBummer!


22 posted on 09/28/2011 8:08:18 PM PDT by Rembrandt (.. AND the donkey you rode in on.)
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To: Red Badger; Ronin

What is amazing to me, considering that there has been much discussion about what constitutes a line in the sand for most people, and the fact that there is so little agreement concerning one that any particular person’s stand is liable to be viewed as that of an isolated fanatic, is the fact that we are being handed one on a platter, which most everyone can agree upon.

That was a long and convoluted way of saying that I think that most people would agree that taking away the ballot box is a definite NO, and would lead to serious repercussions. So why float it, unless that is where you want to go? And if so, why?


23 posted on 09/28/2011 8:56:31 PM PDT by Apogee
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To: MontaniSemperLiberi
Republicans want to TRY SOMETHING, but Reid and Obama are stuck on stupid.

From the quotes, even FDR knew trying the same thing over again is futile and you need to try something new.

The four terms of FDR radically transformed America. There's very few who remember the America before his rule. For nearly 80 years since he started his presidency, we've all grown up in a society with the idea that the federal government is the source of all good. That it should be the center of everything. It pervades even the party of "smaller government."

24 posted on 09/28/2011 9:11:34 PM PDT by newzjunkey (Obama wins reelecton; GOP will find a way to lose.)
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To: MontaniSemperLiberi

According to the website of The American Prospect, “at the dawn of a new progressive era and a time of economic transformation for the United States and the world, the magazine’s founding purpose was to demonstrate that progressive ideas could animate a majority politics; to restore to intellectual and political respectability the case for social investment; to energize civic democracy and give voice to the disenfranchised; and to counteract the growing influence of conservative media.”

I”m lost what value you think there is in posting their tripe here.


25 posted on 09/28/2011 11:48:45 PM PDT by Freedom_Is_Not_Free (SP12: They called Reagan "unelectable", too.)
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To: Freedom_Is_Not_Free

Read the comments and you might get it. That’s okay if you don’t. The rest of us will lead you.


26 posted on 09/29/2011 4:17:24 AM PDT by MontaniSemperLiberi (Moutaineers are Always Free)
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To: Apogee

You know, that’s a very good point.

Establishment Republicans make this more effective. By slowing down but not stopping the Progressives, Progressives isolate fewer people but those people are more effectively isolated.


27 posted on 09/29/2011 4:20:53 AM PDT by MontaniSemperLiberi (Moutaineers are Always Free)
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To: MontaniSemperLiberi

Harold Meyerson is a self described socialist. He is in this articular advocating for more direct and pure democracy at the expense of the rights of the individual(the minority).

He is utterly blind to the unmitigated tyranny that’s has resulted in thou-out human history including our own history.

Indeed his “call to action” sites the “Civil War” as an example where the Federal goverment was paralyzed by action unable to accomplish his own tyrannical goal of forcing submission to a lawless majority, and suppressing the formally inalienable right of revolution.

This was sadly untrue then as it was untrue in the 1930’s where FDR DID NOT abandon his failed “experiments” with goverment force, Instead FDR left us with an insurmountable legacy of debt and goverment largesse & dependents we to this day can’t afford to support.

If you ask me this man should get what he wants, he should be voted into slavery by a majority. Maybe then he will stop and think before he advocates other people having the right to vote away your rights in an essentially lawless(limitless) goverment.


28 posted on 09/29/2011 6:35:08 AM PDT by Monorprise
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To: I cannot think of a name
A great number of problems we face today are BECAUSE of that imbecile FDR, and his “let's push this button and see what it does” mentality. Today we know what most of those buttons did.

FDR knew full well what his policies would do. That is why he did them. He was surrounded by Communist in his administration and his wife was also a Communist. All those disclaimers of his were pure lies to get the legislation passed. LBJ, and Obama borrow tactics from FDR frequently.

29 posted on 09/29/2011 5:26:45 PM PDT by Mind-numbed Robot
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To: MontaniSemperLiberi
The average Freeper could refute Meyerson’s version of history in less than a minute.

The danger of men like him is the use of his material by high school and college “educators.” When millions of young people are taught to despise the principles of our republic, the consequences will be terrible.

30 posted on 09/30/2011 3:09:47 AM PDT by Jacquerie
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To: MontaniSemperLiberi
The country needs and, unless I mistake its temper, the country demands bold, persistent experimentation," Franklin Roosevelt declared as he campaigned for the presidency in the spring of 1932. "It is common sense to take a method and try it. If it fails, admit it frankly and try another. But above all, try something."

Most of the experiments Roosevelt tried to rebuild the economy once he took office encountered fierce opposition.


Oh, Harold, you poor boob! Roosevelt was correct in the intent but completely wrong in the means. The country (which is not equivalent to "the federal government of the United States, though liberal Democrats believe it to be) will experiment boldly through its states and its people and through their voluntary associations dedicated to whatever it is that happens to motivate them at any particular time. What will it be? Who knows? Nobody can predict that. Anyone's free to try.

But what Roosevelt tried was to use the government to enact his particular vision of what the United States should be. This is completely contrary to the intent of the founders written into the Constitution (and acknowledged by Obama in his whining about the Constitution being a negative document): the federal government is limited to a few well-defined, enumerated powers, everything else is to be left up to the States or to the people. And the constitution of the federal government is such that it is to be hobbled so that rapid social engineering is not easy to do: staggered election cycles, separation of powers, vetoes on legislation, the possibility of overriding the veto, a presidency rather than a parliament, the popular election of representatives to pit rabble rousers against the states in their appointment of senators to represent the states' interests (sadly eliminated by the 17th amendment).
31 posted on 09/30/2011 4:17:27 AM PDT by aruanan
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To: Jacquerie

The danger of men like him is the use of his material by high school and college “educators.”

Great point.

I suspect/believe the evolution of thought goes something like this. Once God was taken out of the discussion natural law could no longer be taught. Economics and other social sciences had to be explained on a secular basis. The secular explanation for economics is an amoral “survival of the fittest”. Meyerson’s arguments revolve around human thought being superior to what happens naturally. Young people accept this basis and become lost.


32 posted on 09/30/2011 4:50:52 AM PDT by MontaniSemperLiberi (Moutaineers are Always Free)
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To: aruanan

Love the comments.


33 posted on 09/30/2011 4:52:17 AM PDT by MontaniSemperLiberi (Moutaineers are Always Free)
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To: reasonisfaith

Our founders never dreamed America would send its jobs and factories, to America’s largest competitor.

They never dreamed anyone at any future date would do such a stupid thing, because to them, that was treason.

They would never even consider any Americans would.


34 posted on 09/30/2011 4:56:52 AM PDT by Cringing Negativism Network ("Cut the Crap and Balance!" -- Governor Sarah Palin , Friday August 12 2011, Iowa State Fair)
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To: MontaniSemperLiberi; Mrs. Don-o
What he fails to understand is that we are made in the image of our creator and we cannot be improved by our government.

That is true. But it must also be recognized that the image and likeness has been marred by sin and that unregenerate man tends to evil. That tendency was recognized by the Founders and the solution was to disperse political power as widely as practical. Hence, a Republic - NOT a Democracy. Hence, greater power originally given to the states - NOT to the Federal Government. The Tenth Amendment makes that as clear as crystal.

I'll divert from Roosevelt and bring up Lincoln as an earlier wrecker of the basics of the Constitution. "Saving the Union" at the expense of the States' natural rights was the turning point. The philosophical basis of the American System, so wondrously crafted by the Founders, fell to raw power - military might - and a "New Vision" of America resulted. Since then, the several states are mere appendages, existing only as administrative units to enforce the will of Holy Mother, THE State.

35 posted on 09/30/2011 5:14:15 AM PDT by don-o (He will not share His glory and He will NOT be mocked! Blessed be the name of the Lord forever.)
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To: Freedom_Is_Not_Free
I”m lost what value you think there is in posting their tripe here.

The value is the discussion that refutes the article - best discussion I have seen in many moons on this board. Conservatives need some depth in our understanding of WHY we are in the mess we are in and historically, HOW we got into it. The comments posted so far help us with that.

36 posted on 09/30/2011 5:22:25 AM PDT by don-o (He will not share His glory and He will NOT be mocked! Blessed be the name of the Lord forever.)
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To: MontaniSemperLiberi

Thanks, I’ve been trained by Mark Levin. Ha ha.


37 posted on 09/30/2011 5:35:01 AM PDT by aruanan
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To: MontaniSemperLiberi
Along your line of thought, I just started reading Hayek's The Fatal Conceit, The Errors of Socialism.

Early on, he says he always chuckles when a Leftist goes on and on about evolution, i.e. Natural Selection, spontaneous order, and in the next breath contradicts himself by demanding total central planning and control of human behavior.

38 posted on 09/30/2011 11:43:32 AM PDT by Jacquerie
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