Populist #21 - On the Executive Branch
by populistamerica, Mon Jan 30, 2006 at 05:22:44 PM EST
An honest and logical study of the executive branch will show even the most casual observer that it has always been a source of the People's oppression; from its support of slavery, to its extra-judicial impositions in the war on drugs and the poorly-named war on terror. It is the principal evil we face today, and in the future...
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The administration of the American central government, in its most general interpretation, encompasses all the federal undertakings of the nation; whether legislative, judiciary, or executive. But, in the common course of our lives, and perhaps in its most practical description, it is the executive branch, and all its related offices, which truly captures our attention. Thus, the constitution of this branch, the pinnacle of American empire, requires a thorough examination. It is my strongest contention that the structure of this branch was fatally flawed from its inception; resulting in such an accumulation of power that it has become repugnant to the most basic ideals of a free society. As the presidency assumes endlessly more power for itself, it loses more and more of that great pillar of freedom; responsibility to the People; and without a fundamental alteration of its make-up, it will certainly develop into nothing more than a complete tyranny.
An honest and logical study of the executive branch will show even the most casual observer that it has always been a source of the People's oppression; from its support of slavery, to its extra-judicial impositions in the war on drugs and the poorly-named war on terror. It is the principal evil we face today, and in the future.
It is a widely accepted maxim that history will most often repeat itself; thus, it is reasonable to conclude that many of the acts of depravity brought upon us by the presidency, in the past, will reappear, or in the case of its current wrongdoings, simply continue. It has launched unjust and extra-constitutional wars against nations and people who have never done us harm; resulting in the deaths of millions of people. It has sunk our national dignity and credit to extreme levels. It has repeatedly violated our rights, spied on us, and lied to us.
The presidency of the United States is the pinnacle of power in the most powerful government in the history of the world. To be clear, I'm referring to the institution of the executive branch itself, and not any particular president; although a vast majority of them have regularly acted contrary to our liberty. It is America's sad state of affairs that the branch of government with the responsibility to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States represents nothing more than the opposite of freedom; and it would not be logical to expect, from this time forward, without additional checks and balances, that further such breaches by the executive, of moral obligation and social justice, would cease to continue. The executive branch is one of the greatest obstacles to a true restoration of our liberty!
The executive branch is apparently restrained by the Constitution; but, in actual practice, the law seems to be adhered to only when the cost of violating it is greater than what can be absorbed. In essence, without popular resistance, it does whatever it pleases. It can deploy troops to every corner of the world, initiate war without a declaration by Congress, imprison people without charge, tap our phones, read our mail, and tell us, the Sovereign, what it has the legal authority to do, instead of the other way around.
The executive branch has shown us, over the years, that it has massive power. Presidents have bribed foreign leaders, overthrown governments, used all sorts of inhumane weapons, silenced and kidnapped their enemies, authorized the torture of prisoners, engaged in espionage, imposed crippling embargoes, pillaged our resources, taken our property, and destroyed our economy and our environment. Throughout history, even kings and queens have often failed to survive such disastrous acts; but, in "free" America, the major parties that produce all our presidents today continue to receive our approval through millions of votes. It should be painfully clear to all of us by now, that voting for the lesser of two evils still gives us massive amounts of evil.
The insufficiency of a mere parchment delineation of the boundaries of power for all the branches of the central government; and the necessity of building additional checks into our system, has been both alluded to and discussed in previous papers, and this much is obvious. The checks on the executive branch are painfully inadequate; many of the aforementioned acts may, very likely, have been prevented through proper checks on executive power.
All multiplication and expansion of executive power is dangerous, rather than friendly, to liberty. Extravagant acts such as the aforementioned, which have disfigured the nature, and altered the fundamental structure of the executive; make it necessary to take in an accurate and objective study of its real nature and form. It is my intention, in a number of forthcoming papers, to illustrate how I have reached the conclusion that this branch is in dire need of a fundamental restructuring; without which, our only fate is despotism.
A proper study of the executive must include an understanding of: 1) its intended form, 2) its current form, and 3) the possible merits and flaws of both. We have clearly ignored an absence of the founding principles in our Constitution for too long; but a mere reliance on these principles alone will not secure our future, since such egregious violations and usurpations of power could not occur if these principles were not inherently flawed from the outset. It is through the study of the above three that I hope to find a form best suited to serve our national interests, while ensuring our liberty for a long time to come.
Before I leave you to embark on my next paper, which I will publish on February 9, 2006, I urge you to keep in mind the following words of Thomas Jefferson:
"Unless the mass retains sufficient control over those entrusted with the powers of their government, these will be perverted to their own oppression, and to the perpetuation of wealth and power in the individuals and their families selected for the trust."
"It is a happy truth that people are capable of self-government, and only rendered otherwise by the moral degradation designedly superinduced on them by the wicked acts of their tyrant."
In the spirit of liberty and prosperity,