Conservative fealty to the U.S. Constitution in the Age of ObamaDems' Great Depression II and the Race for 2012
The occasion of America's first great depression saw the exponential growth of a heretofore limited central government that was thought to have been a key ingredient of the 1789 Miracle at Philadelphia that had made our country exceptional.
The post-WWII military retrenchment remained unrecognizably large by pre-Hoover standards and has been growing ever larger ever since. That inexorable growth sparked a conservative movement intent on domestic retrenchment of the national government and a return of Tenth Amendment power to the states.
Conservatives claim a fealty to the Rule of Law instead of men, which requires resort to a source of absolute authority, i.e. The Constitution of the United States which also just happens to advance the principles that produce wealth enough to buy superior arms and a middle class dominating a Fruited Plain.
America now languishes in the longest dire economic circumstance since the 1930s. Then, as now, massive Democratic Party-ordained deficit government spending is not proving remedial, as Republicans frequent Iowa cornfields as the first step in the process of choosing their champion to reverse course.
Kill bad policy at the ballot box
Yet, a disturbing number of Grand Old Party musings from the Hawkeye State do great violence to the great document that replaced the Articles of Confederation, thus allowing a great nation to secure its manifest destiny.
This conservative longed for the leader of the Texas Jobs Machine to enter the race, especially after Tim Pawlenty issued an intentional pass to Oromneycareafter having two strikes on Mitt. All things being equal we favor proven executive competence and results. Paws passed that test and the issues test when he renounced prior support for Cap and Trade.
So, we were thrilled to welcome Rick Perry as an unabashed, unapologetic conservative that is a proven conservative leader as governor with results and who had renounced a seemingly overreaching child inoculation plan. But as we hopefully awaited a statement favoring a border fence before amnesty, Perry went all Cindy Sheehan and deemed Ben Bernanke's loose monetary policy to be "near treasonous".
The Constitution specifically defines the elements of the crime of treason for which one can be hanged by the neck until dead as levying war on the United States or adhering to its enemies while providing aid and comfort.
Some have defended Perry's outburst as not over-the-top because of the "near" qualifier. Would his defenders merely sentence the Chairman of the Federal reserve to 20 years of hard labor?
Of course, this rhetoric is unacceptable unless the Governor of the Lone Star State has copies of emails to Red China's leader outlining a conspiracy to destroy the Almighty Dollar.
This gamecock economics major has waxed profusely against the Paulson Pal Payoff and Panic Prevention Plan (TARP) that Bernanke was in on, as well as the QEII. Bad policy. Dangerous policy. But absent smoking guns adhering to foreigners or domestics intent upon levying a post-crash coup, its nowhere near un-patriotic, much less treason.
We are happy that Rick refuses to repeat the charge.
The State's Right to do wrong and Americans' right to Go West
We are less happy that Rick Santorum would gut the Tenth Amendment and re-write the U.S. Constitution as prohibiting states from exercising their inherent power over marriage and intrastate commerce. Santorum's reasoning? That state governments can't do "wrong". This smacks of Rousseauian French Revolution general will justifications that inexorably lead to mob rule.
States most certainly do retain the power to do wrong. We think Mitt Romney was wrong to favor a law requiring Bay State denizens to buy health insurance. We also cherish the rights of American citizens to move away from Massachusetts to states like Texas to flee bad governance.
Don't like New York's law allowing for same sex marriages? I don't. Then work for a constitutional amendment that would only allow traditional marriages between one man and one woman in the Fifty States and the District of Columbia.
Conservatives must recognize that a federal system exalts states rights and that we are one nation bound together in a compact ratified by We the People.
Loving soldiers, sailors, airmen, marines and the mailman
That document also empowers Congress raise taxes, establish Post Offices and post Roads, raise and support Armies and provide and maintain a Navy. Just as we should not require the Department of Defense to take weekends off unless it raises funds to turn on the heat on Saturdays and Sundays via bake sales, neither should we shut off Americans from the unifying force of affordable mail communication due to poor management.
The Founders and those that followed in the Daniel Webster/Andrew Jackson Era deemed post office and its roads essential to bind the nation and history has born out their wisdom. Moreover, affordable postal services for all has proven and still is essential to a vibrant economy that allows any American to run a business from their home.
I call on conservatives to discover their inner originalist and eschew their penny-wise and pound foolishness. Save the Post Office, keep stamps under 50 cents and deliver mail Six days per week. Listen to Alexis De Tocqueville:
The patriotic feeling that attached each of the Americans to his own state has become less exclusive, and different parts of the Union have become more amicable as they have become better acquainted with each other. The post, that great instrument of intercourse, now reaches into the backwoods...
America needs the wisdom of and unity with the backwoods and the inner city. Make Benjamin Franklin, our first Postmaster General, proud and support a vibrant USPS.
Legal Editor - The Minority Report
Atlanta Law & Politics columnist for Examiner.com
“One man with courage makes a majority.” – Andrew Jackson
More DeVine Gamecock rooster crowings at Modern Conservative, Hillbilly Politics, Unified Patriots, Political Daily and Conservative Outlooks. All Charlotte Observer and Atlanta Journal-Constitution op-eds archived at Townhall.com.