There never was a time, when a political outcome could be guaranteed. There has always been action then reaction. One side advances a proposition and the other pushes back.
First please allow me to clarify terms. Politics is defined as who gets what, when and how. I learned that long ago from a text book on day one in my first Political Science class. Ultimately by this definition virtually every decision is subject to politics at some level.
Today I chuckle when pundits use the word. Most news readers must never have cracked a social science text or if they did, they have long since forgotten their earliest lessons. They talk of things being political, as if it is a process occurring in a vacuum in distant far away land. They are tantalized by the constant banter and become immersed in the minutia without any appreciation of the process or the underlying driving philosophies.
The news reader is a captive of the east coast culture and is constantly reassured of their superior knowledge of the process by a parade of hand picked “expert analysts”, whose prognostications never receive a thorough critique after the actual events reveal the fallacy of their original premises.
Today is a day of extreme concern for me. Today the political landscape is much different and much more fragile than it was last week.
The passing yesterday of Justice Scalia removes from the political landscape an element of political continuity. Unfortunately, political balance is now dependent on nine unelected life appointed lawyers. This should be distressing to every citizen. How far we have strayed from government’s original limitations! So much so that the death of a single justice could tip the balance of this nation.
You see Justice Scalia was a Court leader, who approached all the cases he reviewed with his eye always cast back at the original intent of the founding document. He saw no necessity for a living breathing Constitution. If there was a need for change in the original formula at the macro level, there was the amendment process. It was difficult to accomplish by design.
Rights to Justice Scalia weren’t inconveniences to be discarded due to popular whim. The roles of the three branches of government as well as the role of the Federal and State Government were all identified and defined. The mission was one of following the Constitutional recipe as written and amended.
What resulted from his vigilance was philosophical consistency. Not a guarantee of anything except adherence to the original plan. One could disagree on the ultimate outcome, but the method of reaching the result was based upon the original script with no ad libs.
Today, many believe that the Constitution is outdated and call for action and in fact decry the lackadaisical pace of government to address what they see as the pressing issues of modern society. Count me not among these individuals.
Government remains the greatest threat to a free people and as such must be restrained by a sound foundational philosophy. That philosophy is one of inalienable individual rights invested in us by our Creator, limited roles of all branches of the federal government and checks and balances to curb the inevitable power grabs destined to occur over the course of time. Democratic rule unchecked by individual rights is merely tyranny by multiple tyrants.
Modern society is perceived to face threats at levels not encountered in generations past. To this I say nonsense. These threats are different, but not historically unique. What we have allowed to evolve is unbridled government authority over the individual. The political right threatens liberty by hyperbolizing security fears and the political left seeks to dominate the individual by soft tyranny. The left offers this exchange: liberty for financial entitlements.
Let’s return to the fundamental relationships between government, states and individuals. Remember that individual rights form the foundation of our union. It makes us different from most other nations. We remove cronyism from government by limiting its functions and returning to the original intent of our framers.
Families should take care of their members and failing that local charitable organizations or churches and failing either of those then local communities should be the last resort. Government does not and can not possibly share all the values of all of its constituents and is not to stand in loco parentis. (in place of parents) The best way to insure individual rights is through following the limitations on government set forth as written in the founding document. It is past time to return to original intent. Special interests will no longer invest billions of dollars, if limited government is practiced, because there will be nothing to be gained from their lavish expenditures. If who gets what, cannot be manipulated by government intervention, but is rather accomplished by individual enterprise and merit, then better outcomes will undoubtedly result.
Our political landscape is indeed in a fragile state at this juncture with the passing of Justice Scalia. Balance on the Supreme Court will most certainly be swayed by any new appointee. and we are threatened with the appointment of more liberal activist jurists, who impose more federal regulation upon the populace without regard for original intent.
President Obama clearly doesn’t share Justice Scalia’s belief in the wisdom the founding documents. It has been said he sees the Bill of Rights as a listing of negative liberties. I guess that is so, when you have liberalism as your religion and see government as the road to your salvation.
So to you RINOs ,(Republicans in name only) and patriotic liberty loving Democrats, you must impose this litmus test on any future nominee. Any Supreme Court nominee must adhere to founding principles of limited government, separation of powers, checks and balances, individual rights and true federalism, which includes respect for the tenth amendment. Any jurist considered must have a record. No more trying to slide someone by. You must have the difficult debates. You must for just this once show more concern for the future of your nation even at the expense of your personal electoral fate. If you do not we risk moving from a fragile political landscape to a permanently fractured one.