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Author Topic: Political Violence  (Read 6269 times)

Rand47

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Re: Political Violence
« Reply #20 on: June 16, 2017, 08:39:38 AM »

As opposed to the vast changes in society, culture, technology, politics, and so on affecting the degree of relevance, scope, and application?

The US constitution has been elastic since day 1.  Jefferson expressed his opinion that constitutions should be regularly rewritten, for example.

I rest my case.

Rand
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Alan Klein

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Re: Political Violence
« Reply #21 on: June 16, 2017, 10:58:47 AM »

As opposed to the vast changes in society, culture, technology, politics, and so on affecting the degree of relevance, scope, and application?

The US constitution has been elastic since day 1.  Jefferson expressed his opinion that constitutions should be regularly rewritten, for example.

People don't change.
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James Clark

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Re: Political Violence
« Reply #22 on: June 16, 2017, 11:12:12 AM »

I rest my case.

Rand

Phil's right, though. To think a scientist like Franklin, or a scholar like Jefferson, or a federalist like Hamilton would subscribe to strict originalism based on a document without the benefit of 250 years of progress is absurd.   

(In fact, many Federalists didn't even want to codify the Bill of Rights - not because they didn't believe in them, but because they feared that listing them would use that document to assert that those were the ONLY protected rights.)   

Lo and behold, 260 years later, that seems very prescient, doesn't it?
« Last Edit: June 16, 2017, 11:20:50 AM by James Clark »
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Rand47

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Re: Political Violence
« Reply #23 on: June 16, 2017, 11:31:30 AM »

Phil's right, though. To think a scientist like Franklin, or a scholar like Jefferson, or a federalist like Hamilton would subscribe to strict originalism based on a document without the benefit of 250 years of progress is absurd.   

(In fact, many Federalists didn't even want to codify the Bill of Rights - not because they didn't believe in them, but because they feared that listing them would use that document to assert that those were the ONLY protected rights.)   

Lo and behold, 260 years later, that seems very prescient, doesn't it?

I completely agree.  I guess my point is that the founders did, indeed, know this... and they put in a process for amending, re-writing, etc.  When was the last time the elastic was stretched using the prescribed process?  As I said earlier, the legislative and judicial "stretching" amounts to the beginnings of oligarchy to my way of thinking.  As legitimate adjustments are deemed appropriate, why doesn't the legislature develop appropriate amendments and then "run the process" to have them ratified?  It has happened (appropriately, me thinks) in the past.  Today, and moving forward, I doubt you'll see that happen.  The acrimony dividing "pretty much everything" renders the process unworkable.  So, we'll slide along doing it "other ways" with the oligarchs (and I'm not talking about new world order conspiracy nonsense or the like here, just what happens as described earlier) garnering more power along the way.

Rand
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Alan Klein

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Re: Political Violence
« Reply #24 on: June 16, 2017, 11:39:57 AM »

I'm sure the founders never thought in their wildest dreams that the Supreme Court Justices would write law based upon their own personal beliefs and biases. The founders didn't even want to have too much power through legislation coming out of congress.

They mainly wanted to have people run their own lives in their own States based upon their state laws and how they wanted to live personally.  If they knew how the Supreme Court justices have created so many of the laws we have today, they would be astounded and disappointed.
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James Clark

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Re: Political Violence
« Reply #25 on: June 16, 2017, 01:27:46 PM »

I completely agree.  I guess my point is that the founders did, indeed, know this... and they put in a process for amending, re-writing, etc.  When was the last time the elastic was stretched using the prescribed process?  As I said earlier, the legislative and judicial "stretching" amounts to the beginnings of oligarchy to my way of thinking.  As legitimate adjustments are deemed appropriate, why doesn't the legislature develop appropriate amendments and then "run the process" to have them ratified?  It has happened (appropriately, me thinks) in the past.  Today, and moving forward, I doubt you'll see that happen.  The acrimony dividing "pretty much everything" renders the process unworkable.  So, we'll slide along doing it "other ways" with the oligarchs (and I'm not talking about new world order conspiracy nonsense or the like here, just what happens as described earlier) garnering more power along the way.

Rand

Thanks for the clarification - I think we are on the same page then.  The problem now, as you said, is that the process is broken.  Whether by design to benefit said oligarchs, or by chance due to the perniciousness of "factions" (i.e. partisanship - another paramount worry of this nation's founders (see federalist 9 & 10, for example), the fact remains that the idea of a living document is largely reliant on compromise and forethought, both of which are currently in short supply.
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James Clark

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Re: Political Violence
« Reply #26 on: June 16, 2017, 01:31:55 PM »

I'm sure the founders never thought in their wildest dreams that the Supreme Court Justices would write law based upon their own personal beliefs and biases. The founders didn't even want to have too much power through legislation coming out of congress.

They mainly wanted to have people run their own lives in their own States based upon their state laws and how they wanted to live personally.  If they knew how the Supreme Court justices have created so many of the laws we have today, they would be astounded and disappointed.

I'm not sure I agree with you, Alan.  I know it's a common to complain about "activist judges" (basically when they decide a case that goes against one's own idea of Constitutional scholarship ;)  ), in reality, once one accepts the (honestly rather obvious) fact that the Constitution was never meant to *limit* rights in excess of those explicitly stated in the original documents and amendments, the idea that the USSC "creates" laws by extending implied rights is sort of goofy.   

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Alan Klein

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Re: Political Violence
« Reply #27 on: June 16, 2017, 01:58:02 PM »

I'm not sure I agree with you, Alan.  I know it's a common to complain about "activist judges" (basically when they decide a case that goes against one's own idea of Constitutional scholarship ;)  ), in reality, once one accepts the (honestly rather obvious) fact that the Constitution was never meant to *limit* rights in excess of those explicitly stated in the original documents and amendments, the idea that the USSC "creates" laws by extending implied rights is sort of goofy.   


The constitution doesn't grant rights.   It limits power.   It doesn't say the people have free speech.   Rather it says  the government cannot block free speech.  It doesnt say we can practice whatever religion we want or none at all..   It says the government cannot impose it's religious standard or doctrine.  Whatever power is not granted to government remains with the people.  We are less free with more government power.

The problm is that the supreme court has rewritten the constitution to extend additional  powers to the government.   For example,  social security,  Medicare,  Obama care,  etc have nothing to do with congresses right to regulate interstate commerce or taxation which power is granted in the constitution.   Yet we've allowed the courts to approve those thjngs.  Note these may or may not be good things to have.   But the constitution should be amended to allow them just like taxes were included by amendment.   Remember,  every law takes away someone's rights and freedom.   So the court is not extending freedom but rather limiting it by giving more power to the government.   You're becoming less rather than more free.
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BartvanderWolf

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Re: Political Violence
« Reply #28 on: June 16, 2017, 02:25:51 PM »

The constitution doesn't grant rights.   It limits power.

Correct, that's how most constitutions work. It protects the people from an 'all' mighty government that might want to overstep the limitations of its mandate.

Cheers,
Bart
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== If you do what you did, you'll get what you got. ==

James Clark

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Re: Political Violence
« Reply #29 on: June 16, 2017, 02:41:58 PM »

The constitution doesn't grant rights.   It limits power.   It doesn't say the people have free speech.   Rather it says  the government cannot block free speech.  It doesnt say we can practice whatever religion we want or none at all..   It says the government cannot impose it's religious standard or doctrine.  Whatever power is not granted to government remains with the people.  We are less free with more government power.

Yes, but that's not what I said :)  I'm totally fine with the concept as presented, but in practice, what we hear coming from originalists is, "...there's no right to privacy (for example) because the Constitution doesn't spell it out."  When a court affirms the implied right, it isn't *creating law,* it's asserting that the right already exists and cannot be infringed, which is totally in line with the founder's thinking.

Quote from: Alan Klein
The problm is that the supreme court has rewritten the constitution to extend additional  powers to the government.   For example,  social security,  Medicare,  Obama care,  etc have nothing to do with congresses right to regulate interstate commerce or taxation which power is granted in the constitution.   Yet we've allowed the courts to approve those thjngs.  Note these may or may not be good things to have.   But the constitution should be amended to allow them just like taxes were included by amendment.   Remember,  every law takes away someone's rights and freedom.   So the court is not extending freedom but rather limiting it by giving more power to the government.   You're becoming less rather than more free.

These things you're talking about were duly created in Congress, by the people's representatives, not by courts.  What's your point? ;)
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Alan Klein

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Re: Political Violence
« Reply #30 on: June 16, 2017, 04:30:18 PM »

Yes, but that's not what I said :)  I'm totally fine with the concept as presented, but in practice, what we hear coming from originalists is, "...there's no right to privacy (for example) because the Constitution doesn't spell it out."  When a court affirms the implied right, it isn't *creating law,* it's asserting that the right already exists and cannot be infringed, which is totally in line with the founder's thinking.

These things you're talking about were duly created in Congress, by the people's representatives, not by courts.  What's your point? ;)
The power of congress to create these laws was not given ("enumerated") in our constitution.  The Congress created that power out of whole cloth, and the Supreme Court let them do it under the guise that Social Security, Medicare and Obamacare somehow was included in the constitutionally allowed power to tax and regulate interstate commerce.  I do not believe that it was the intent of the constitution to use those powers to create these other things. 

Think about Medicare and Obamacare and Medicaid.  Around 17% of our economy possibly going up to 25% is under the control of government bureaucrats.  How much we pay, how much doctors and pharmaceutical  and medical supply companies will make, which doctors we will be able to see, etc. will no longer be under our personal control.  And this is the point.  That it was done without an amendment to the constitution.  Major legislation that effect life and death and health issues and our freedom to decide how we want it done. 

Our friends in Europe were disconcerted that it only required a 51% vote for Brexit.  At least the people voted on it.  But here, bureaucrats have seized the power supported by a liberal court who decides things on what they think best for us rather than relying on what the constitution says.  Rand was right.  We may have given up our rights already and it's too late to get them back.
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Farmer

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Re: Political Violence
« Reply #31 on: June 16, 2017, 07:36:37 PM »

People don't change.

Of course they do.  Individually and collectively.  You think you're conservative?  Go back just 50 years and you're quite progressive.  100?  You're left of centre.  200?  You're out of your mind on many issues.

Jefferson didn't just want people to be able to amend the constitution (which of course is a good thing to be able to do, and suitably difficult), he was proposing complete re-writes.  Constitutional process as they had just done, to reflect the new realities.

Alan you complain that the original framers couldn't have imagined the power of the presidency or the supreme court or the congress - basically, the power of the nation itself.  That's entirely correct - they couldn't.  The US was dispersed geographically with the fastest method of transport being a horse or a ship, and no means of communications that could exceed that save over a very short distance (signals).  The concept of more than a quarter of a billion people being in the same nation.  The population of the US in 1776 is estimated at about 2.5 million.  The entire world is estimated at a population barely twice that of the US now by itself around 1750.  50 states compared to 13?  Australia has just been "discovered" by Cook 6 years earlier and Antarctica just 3 years.  The world was hardly known by modern standards.


As James points out, the courts affirm that rights exist when there is an attempt to limit them.  They don't create new ones.  ALL other rights already exist and are held by the states and the people.
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Phil Brown

Farmer

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Re: Political Violence
« Reply #32 on: June 16, 2017, 07:41:16 PM »

Our friends in Europe were disconcerted that it only required a 51% vote for Brexit.  At least the people voted on it.  But here, bureaucrats have seized the power supported by a liberal court who decides things on what they think best for us rather than relying on what the constitution says.  Rand was right.  We may have given up our rights already and it's too late to get them back.

The last 80 years have, on balance, been under a conservative SCotUS, and before the last 5(ish) years, you need to go back to 1970 to find a time when it was liberal.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ideological_leanings_of_U.S._Supreme_Court_justices#/media/File:Graph_of_Martin-Quinn_Scores_of_Supreme_Court_Justices_1937-Now.png
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Phil Brown

Alan Klein

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Re: Political Violence
« Reply #33 on: June 16, 2017, 09:20:38 PM »

The last 80 years have, on balance, been under a conservative SCotUS, and before the last 5(ish) years, you need to go back to 1970 to find a time when it was liberal.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ideological_leanings_of_U.S._Supreme_Court_justices#/media/File:Graph_of_Martin-Quinn_Scores_of_Supreme_Court_Justices_1937-Now.png
The conservatives on the court look conservative compared to the liberals.  But conservatives have also bought into the  movement of the law to a more powerful and centralized government, something the framers would have been aghast at.  They wanted minimum centralized power.  That's how they wrote the constitution.  But we have develop is a federal system that rules roughshod over the people. 

Looking up line graphs you present does not tell the story.  Having lived the last 72 years, I can tell you control and regulation and laws are much more oppressive than it's been.  Plus we have a media, a culture from Hollywood, and an educational system that has bought into big government and social oversight.  They have conditioned regular folks to accept this loss of their personal freedoms by being brow beaten with phony guilt and political correctness.  People also have personal greed in looking for something that's "free".  Of course nothing is free; something for nothing always comes at a great price.   Independence and personal freedoms are lost.  Maybe forever.
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Farmer

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Re: Political Violence
« Reply #34 on: June 16, 2017, 09:33:42 PM »

But conservatives have also bought into the  movement of the law to a more powerful and centralized government, something the framers would have been aghast at.

The original framers would have no concept of how to rationalise the modern world without a lot of time and research and education to catch them up.  Essentially, they would have no frame of reference by which to even consider the modern world in a meaningful way, let alone judge it.  It's the same when people moralise over decisions made in the past - comparing it to the modern frame of reference is utterly unfair on those who made the decisions at the time.

I think the original framers would be mostly aghast at the fact that the US hadn't managed to update its constitution to represent the needs of the modern society and that partisanship and extremism, and by the growing rejection of learning and understanding.
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Phil Brown

Alan Klein

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Re: Political Violence
« Reply #35 on: June 16, 2017, 09:36:35 PM »

Of course they do.  Individually and collectively.  You think you're conservative?  Go back just 50 years and you're quite progressive.  100?  You're left of centre.  200?  You're out of your mind on many issues.

Jefferson didn't just want people to be able to amend the constitution (which of course is a good thing to be able to do, and suitably difficult), he was proposing complete re-writes.  Constitutional process as they had just done, to reflect the new realities.

Alan you complain that the original framers couldn't have imagined the power of the presidency or the supreme court or the congress - basically, the power of the nation itself.  That's entirely correct - they couldn't.  The US was dispersed geographically with the fastest method of transport being a horse or a ship, and no means of communications that could exceed that save over a very short distance (signals).  The concept of more than a quarter of a billion people being in the same nation.  The population of the US in 1776 is estimated at about 2.5 million.  The entire world is estimated at a population barely twice that of the US now by itself around 1750.  50 states compared to 13?  Australia has just been "discovered" by Cook 6 years earlier and Antarctica just 3 years.  The world was hardly known by modern standards.


As James points out, the courts affirm that rights exist when there is an attempt to limit them.  They don't create new ones.  ALL other rights already exist and are held by the states and the people.
When I say people don't change I'm referring to their DNA, their ego, their fears, etc.  The COnsitution works whether it would have been implemented in 1000BC, 1776 or today.  Sure modes of transportation and other things change.  But the basis of human psychology is built into his genes. 

The constitution was implemented to protect men from being ruled by other men a situation that has existed in human psychology for millions of years.

Also you keep going back to rights but fail to recognize that the constitution limits power to do things like Social Security or Obamacare.  The right to be left alone by government is also a right.  That's the purpose of the Constitution as well.  But we've grown into an all powerful government that imposes its will on all areas of our lives. That diminishes all our rights especially the main one to be left alone to decide how we wish to run our lives with minimum interference from government and other men.
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Alan Klein

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Re: Political Violence
« Reply #36 on: June 16, 2017, 09:40:27 PM »

The original framers would have no concept of how to rationalise the modern world without a lot of time and research and education to catch them up.  Essentially, they would have no frame of reference by which to even consider the modern world in a meaningful way, let alone judge it.  It's the same when people moralise over decisions made in the past - comparing it to the modern frame of reference is utterly unfair on those who made the decisions at the time.

I think the original framers would be mostly aghast at the fact that the US hadn't managed to update its constitution to represent the needs of the modern society and that partisanship and extremism, and by the growing rejection of learning and understanding.
You're justifying big government over man who knows better than the individual what they want and how they should live.  I want a small government as the framers had intended.  They would be astonished how much government has grown despite a constitution that intended otherwise.  I guess we will just have to agree to disagree about what's best.
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amolitor

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Re: Political Violence
« Reply #37 on: June 16, 2017, 10:31:06 PM »

Way to go on the political violence issue. You can definitely fix this by continuing to endlessly bicker over minutiae.

If you guys were face to face over a beer, and made an honest effort, it would take you 5 minutes to determine that you agree on 99% of stuff that actually matters (will I be OK? are my children going to be OK? do you like dogs? or are you a cat person?) and you'd be able to set aside the irrelevant 1% without much effort.

But, nope, it's bicker bicker bicker, with the occasional murderous explosion.

Way to go, guys. I'm proud.
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Farmer

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Re: Political Violence
« Reply #38 on: June 16, 2017, 11:33:47 PM »

Ah, yes.  "You all need to stop bickering and posting on the internet", says someone who just posted on the internet to bicker about people posting on the internet.

If you're so disinterested, how is it you speak as if you have detailed knowledge of the thread?
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Phil Brown

amolitor

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Re: Political Violence
« Reply #39 on: June 16, 2017, 11:39:31 PM »

Unlike you, I am addressing the underlying problem head on, which is that we're polarizing ourselves over trivialities, and thus generating hate and anger when what we need is to grasp that we're a humans with roughly the same hopes, dreams, aspirations.

Who cares what some guys 200 years dead might or might not have thought privately?

Seriously. I know it's fun, but it's not what the world needs.
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