Available Now! (click cover)

America's Counter-Revolution
The Constitution Revisited

From the back cover:

This book challenges the assumption that the Constitution was a landmark in the struggle for liberty. Instead, Sheldon Richman argues, it was the product of a counter-revolution, a setback for the radicalism represented by America’s break with the British empire. Drawing on careful, credible historical scholarship and contemporary political analysis, Richman suggests that this counter-revolution was the work of conservatives who sought a nation of “power, consequence, and grandeur.” America’s Counter-Revolution makes a persuasive case that the Constitution was a victory not for liberty but for the agendas and interests of a militaristic, aristocratic, privilege-seeking ruling class.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Conservatives and the Courts

It is always amusing to watch conservatives react to court decisions they don’t like. They were firmly in character last week when Federal District Judge Anna Diggs Taylor ruled that the Bush administration broke the law and violated the Constitution when it began wiretapping, without warrants, international phone calls between Americans and “suspected terrorists.”

She’s a Carter appointee, they said. She’s a liberal. What did you expect?

It doesn’t take much to see that this is not a refutation of Judge Taylor’s ruling. It is misdirection.
Read the rest of this week's op-ed at The Future of Freedom Foundation's website.


Egoigwe said...

Language of the intellectually disabled. Empty craniums always rattle along making the most noise. As said elsewhere already: Judge Anna Diggs Taylor is about the rule of law, civil liberties and true constitutionalism. She's the very profile of courage, intellect and judicial competence. A glowing portrait in dignity, wisdom and grace.

James Leroy Wilson said...

"The historian Merrill Jensen noted that Alexander Hamilton, a staunch nationalist, and Thomas Jefferson, a staunch decentralist, looked at the same Constitution and saw two contradictory things. Each saw a plan of government consistent with his own predilections."

Maybe so. But I thought Madison's vision for the nation was similar to Hamilton's in 1787, and that he became a "Jeffersonian" because of his interpretation of the Constitution. That is, I thought Madison went against his own predilictions. So viewing the Constittuion objectively can be done.

Sheldon Richman said...

How do we know his interpretation of the Constitution didn't change after the change in his predilections? Isn't the standard account that Jefferson changed Madison's mind on some things? Even if there is reason to be skeptical about that, if it happened, then predilections led interpretation, not the other way around.

Given the intentional vagueness of the Constitution's wording, what does it mean to view the document objectively?