Where Did Our Republic Go??

Discussion in 'History' started by PoliticalChic, Feb 24, 2012.

  1. PoliticalChic
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    PoliticalChic Gold Member

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    1. re·pub·lic/riˈpəblik/ Noun:
    A state in which supreme power is held by the people and their elected representatives, and which has an elected or nominated president...

    2. "Woodrow Wilson first articulated what would become American government bureaucracy in a 1887 scholarly paper advocating the study of public administration (Wilson 1887).... Although the United States Constitution has been in existence since the beginning of the Union and states enacted their own constitutions modeled after it, very few municipal charters specifically limited or delegated authority."
    Ethics of Bureaucracy

    a. "The politics-administration dichotomy is a theory which holds that bureaucrats are experts who should be left alone to do their job without political interference. It derives from the Woodrow Wilson days of the "founding" of public administration,..."
    Bureaucracy Theory

    Unelected technocrats, experts, and bureaucrats?
    b. Ludwig von Mises said: "The worst law is better than bureaucratic tyranny."

    3. Former NY Senator James L. Buckley said the following:
    "Today, this federal law is 1700 pages more than it was prior to the New Deal. The reason is the creation of more and more bureaus and agencies endowed with ever broader responsibilities and discretion in defining the rules that govern our activities and our lives. And these rules have the full force of law! Congress has increased the number of rules whose infractions are criminalized, waiving the common law requirement that one knows he is breaking the law. Today, one can be jailed for violating a regulation that one had no reason to know even existed!

    a. While the officials in these agencies are generally good people, they become focused on their particular portfolio of duties, that, often, they cannot see the consequences on other parts of society. Put this together with human nature, and one can see bullying, and misuse of power, especially when these individuals are immune to penalty, and supported by free and extensive legal representation: they have sovereign immunity in their positions.

    4. C.S. Lewis identified the result of such great delegation of power and authority to these bureaucrats...
    "I live in the Managerial Age, in a world of "Admin." The greatest evil is not now done in those sordid "dens of crime" that Dickens loved to paint. It is not done even in concentration camps and labour camps. In those we see its final result. But it is conceived and ordered (moved, seconded, carried, and minuted) in clean, carpeted, warmed, and well-lighted offices, by quiet men with white collars and cut fingernails and smooth-shaven cheeks who do not need to raise their voice. Hence, naturally enough, my symbol for Hell is something like the bureaucracy of a police state or the offices of a thoroughly nasty business concern." C.S. Lewis, The Screwtape Letters

    5. Today, another Progressive President uses bureaucracy to eviscerate our republic:
    "Behind every powerful health care mandate under Obamacare is a power-hungry woman named Kathleen Sebelius. As the Health and Human Services Secretary, she has unprecedented power under Obamacare to control health care decisions, the approval of medical products and the national biomedical research agenda. The Secretary is not only the key player; she is the only one on the field. "The Secretary shall…" is mentioned more than 1000 times in the new health care law."
    The American Spectator : Obama's Nurse Ratched


    When did Americans decide to cede their power to a bureaucracy?
    When did we lose our republic?
     
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  2. Mr Clean
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    Mr Clean Gold Member

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    Still here.

    Just under different ownership.
     
  3. Dragon
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    Dragon Senior Member

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    Power held by people THROUGH elected representatives is actually a definition of a DEMOCRATIC republic. Republics may or may not be democratic. Nice to see you coming down on the side of democracy, though. I'll remind you of that next time you seem to swing the other way.

    There you go again, claiming something began with Wilson when it obviously didn't. I have no doubt that he wrote that paper, but the U.S. government has always had a bureaucracy appointed by the executive on authority granted by Congress.

    Untrue. The Union began in 1775-76, while the Constitution was not ratified until 1789, so during its first 13-14 years, the United States was not governed by the Constitution but by the prior government, the Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union.

    "Very few"? I'd be surprised if any did. Delegated authority is a feature of a federal system. It establishes the limited range of powers to be exercised by the federal government, leaving all other governmental powers in the hands of the states. Delegated authority or enumerated powers simply isn't a concept that applies to state governments, only at the federal level. A state government can do anything whatsoever that its people through the elected representatives want it to, except for what is expressly forbidden either by the U.S. Constitution or by the state constitution. It is not limited, as the federal government is, only to certain specified powers.

    I don't know who has advocated this. I do know that, in practice, that's not the way it works.

    Lewis was 1) arguing that nowadays evil is done in different ways than in the past, and 2) expressing a personal dislike. As he said immediately before what you quoted, "I like bats much better than bureaucrats." But he also acknowledged that this idea about the nature of devils (this was from the introduction to The Screwtape Letters) was quite likely to be wrong.

    As for the rest, you're raising, once again, a non-issue through misleading argument, false statements, and the presentation of people's opinions as if it were fact.
     
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  4. CrusaderFrank
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    CrusaderFrank Gold Member

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    My sole consolation will be when Progressives have to kill each other other for the last can of 20 year old government issued cat food rations
     
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  5. Intense
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    Intense Senior Member

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    Still, I believe it actually started with Hamilton.
     
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  6. Douger
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    Douger BANNED

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    Trường hợp nước cộng hòa đã đi
     
  7. PoliticalChic
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    PoliticalChic Gold Member

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    1. If one sees the hallmark of Progressivism as disrespect for the Constitution, and the idea of unalienable rights, and supports the primacy of the state over the individual, than the nod must go to Wilson....

    ....he suggested that the Constitution could be cast off and thrown away...
    ...that unalienable rights were mere fiction,...
    ...but Teddy Roosevelt is in the running, as per 'The New Nationalism' speech.

    a. Woodrow Wilson's essay “Socialism and Democracy” ‘Limitations of public authority must be put aside; the state may cross that boundary at will.’The collective is not limited by individual rights."

    2. But, I'll give your vote for Hamilton, this:

    Both Herbert Croly and TR abhorred Jefferson’s legacy of limited government and uncontrolled individualism. Rather, they championed Hamilton’s legacy of strong government and elite leadership. Croly wrote that Jefferson “understood his fellow-countrymen better and trusted them more than his rival,” but was suspicious of any efficient political authority. The problem of the Hamiltonians (or Federalists) was that they came “to identify both anti-Federalism and democracy with political disorder and social instability.” But they did believe in “a fruitful liberty” so long as there was an efficient central government to promote the national welfare.

    a. Croly favored Hamiltonianism that saw “interference with the natural course of American economic and political business and its regulation and guidance in the national direction.” The drawback was in linking the battle against instability and disorder, i.e. against anarchy and disintegration, to the support of “well-to-do-people,” rather than a broader constituency. The result was that a rising democracy came to distrust the national government. [see “The Promise of American Life.” by Croly]

    3.My view of indicting Wilson is based on the influence of the German philosopher Hegel, who claimed the state as supreme. The source of Progressive ideas was Germany, specifically the philosophy of Hegel, and this euro-thinking placed the ruler above the ruled: Germans have a history of accepting authoritarian rule.

    a. Hegel said, “The state says … you must obey …. The state has rights against the individual; its members have obligations, among them that of obeying without protest” (Ralf Dahrendorf, "Society and Democracy in Germany").

    b. The German influence reflected the “intoxicating effect of the undiluted Hegelian philosophy upon the American mind,” as progressive Charles Merriam once put it.


    I'm hopeful that the Obama term represents the end of a century of Progressive Rule of our republic, the coda of destructive aria.
     
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  8. CrusaderFrank
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    CrusaderFrank Gold Member

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    Unfortunately only 2 Republicans would actually try to roll back the Progressive Jihad: Palin and Paul; she's not running and the RNC would never let him win
     
  9. Intense
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    Intense Senior Member

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    Hamilton held little regard for the Individual. He Trumped Enumerated Powers with the General Welfare Clause, which he viewed without limit. He Elevated the Role of the Court. He fought Madison and Jefferson Tooth and Nail. He was the cause of the Whiskey Rebellion, the Alien and Sedition Acts. He advocated both Monopolies and the Federal or National control over them. He was more into Empire, than Balance of Power. For Hamilton, Federalism was nothing more than a Stepping Stone to Statism, a Phase, nothing more. Translation : He was an Elitist SOB. :)
     
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  10. PoliticalChic
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    PoliticalChic Gold Member

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    1. I'll give you Hamilton as a hero of Progressives, but it was the influence of the German schools that so many of the early Progressives attended, or were tutored by professors who did attend same, that propelled the ideology.

    2. Progressivism as an idea had arisen in the 1880’s, when America was transforming from a largely agricultural country into a burgeoning urban one. But many Americans who had emigrated prior to the Civil War retained a certain moral nostalgia for their American past. While they enjoyed modernization, and wanted to share in the profits of industrial American, and the benefits of city life, they, somewhat paradoxically, yearned for the albeit mythological decency of a rural America.

    a. The Progressive movement at first was made up of consumers and taxpayers who were challenging the accumulated wealth and power of the Rockefellers, Carnegies, Morgans, etc. But by 1912, it had become largely farmers and industrial workers seeking relief from the onerous power of the great monopolies. James Chace, “1912,” p.100

    b. So, had there not been the necessity for reform, there could not have been a Progressive push. There had to be the accumulation of wealth and power in the hands of a few who benefited from industrialization to produce the milieu.
     
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