Monday, August 27, 2007

Ever Wonder Where The Idea of A Living Breathing Constitution Came From?

I was rereading a section of the book, "Christianity and the Constitution" by John Eidsmoe. I wondered if any of you had ever read this before. I posted the same thing over at Vox's today and then decided I should post it here as well.

From "The New Freedom" by Woodrow Wilson

One of the chief benefits I used to derive from being president of a university was that I had the pleasure of entertaining thoughtful men from all over the world. I cannot tell you how much has dropped into my granary by their presence. I had been casting around in my mind for something
by which to draw several parts of my political thought together when it was my good fortune to entertain a very interesting Scotsman who had been devoting himself to the philosophical thought of the seventeenth century. His talk was so engaging that it was delightful to hear him speak of anything, and presently there came out of the unexpected region of his thought the thing I had been waiting for. He called my attention to the fact that in every generation all sorts of speculation and thinking tend to fall under the formula of the dominant thought of the age. For example, after the Newtonian Theory of the universe had been developed, almost all thinking tended to express itself in the analogies of the Newtonian Theory, and since the Darwinian Theory has reigned amongst us, everybody is likely to express whatever he wishes to expound in terms of development and accommodation to environment.
Now, it came to me, as this interesting man talked, that the Constitution of the United States had been made under the dominion of the Newtonian Theory. You have only to read the papers of The Federalist to see that fact written on every page. They speak of the "checks and balances" of the Constitution, and use to express their idea the simile of the organization of the universe, and particularly of the solar system,— how by the attraction of gravitation the various parts are held in their orbits; and then they proceed to represent Congress, the Judiciary, and the President as a sort of imitation of the solar system. They were only following the English Whigs, who gave Great Britain its modern constitution. Not that those Englishmen analyzed the matter, or had any theory about it; Englishmen care little for theories. It was a Frenchman, Montesquieu, who pointed out to them how faithfully they had copied Newton's description of the mechanism of the heavens. The makers of our Federal Constitution read Montesquieu with true scientific enthusiasm. They were scientists in their way,— the best way of their age,— those fathers of the nation. Jefferson wrote of "the laws of Nature,"—and then by way of afterthought,— "and of Nature's God." And they constructed a goveminent as they would have constructed an orrery,— to display the laws of nature. Politics in their thought was a variety of mechanics. The Constitution was founded on the law of gravitation. The government was to exist and move by virtue of the efficacy of "checks and balances." The trouble with the theory is that government is not a machine, but a living thing. It falls, not under the theory of the universe, but under the theory of organic life. It is accountable to Darwin, not to Newton. It is modified by its environment, necessitated by its tasks, shaped to its functions by the sheer pressure of life. No living thing can have its organs offset against each other, as checks, and live. On the contrary, its life is dependent upon their quick co-operation, their ready response to the commands of instinct or intelligence, their amicable community of purpose. Government is not a body of blind forces; it is a body of men, with highly differentiated functions, no doubt, in our modern day, of specialization, with a common task and purpose. Their co-operation is indis-pensable, their warfare fatal. There can be no
successful government without the intimate, instinctive co-ordination of the organs of life
and action. This is not theory, but fact, and displays its force as fact, whatever theories may
be thrown across its track. Living political constitutions must be Darwinian in structure
and in practice. Society is a living organism and must obey the laws of life, not of mechanics; it must develop. All that progressives ask or desire is permission—in an era when "development," "evolution," is the scientific word — to interpret the Constitution according to the Darwinian principle; all they ask is recognition of the fact that a nation is a living thing and not a machine. Some citizens of this country have never got beyond the Declaration of Independence, signed in Philadelphia, July 4th, 1776. Their bosoms swell against George III, but they have no consciousness of the war for freedom that is going on to-day.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

A Recap of the Straw Poll

Some thoughts about the straw poll.

First, about the voter numbers. In both '95 (Bob Dull) and '99(GW) the winners buses in huge numbers from out of state. There was no provision made to make certain that only Iowans were voting. I have always believed that neither of them would have won if only Iowans had been the voters. So the number of voters was inflated because many simply voted with tickets provided by the campaigns.
This year was much different, when the lovely Mrs. farmer and I voted we had to show our drivers license as proof of Iowa residency then after recieving a ballot, put our thumb on a pad of indelible ink. Then we voted on a paper ballot which was then fed into a Diebold? counter. BTW, the number of tickets sold is deceiving as well, I had signed up with both the Ron Paul and Tom Tancredo campaigns for free tickets. So the wife and I had four tickets. My younger brother had signed up with Tancredo, but his tickets would not allow him to go into the auditorium to hear the candidates speak(there was number limit on that for seating purposes). I gave him two tickets, so he and his wife were able to get in, then the tickets he had been given to vote, but not hear the speeches went unused. I know of several others which signed up for tickets with more than one campaign.

As far as it goes, this system was still better than the last vote at the str-pll. That is why there were so many less votes cast. I heard several people asking how they could get an Iowa id to beat the system, but for the most part I think the vote was honest.

On the other hand, if you have big bucks, Romany had them, then all you had to do to win was get the bodies, warm breathing but unthinking bodies to vote. Romany had buses from every one of the 99 counties in Iowa and large counties had more than one. He had also rented over a hundred golf carts. His strategy was very simple, get as many old geezers as you can, give them a free ride to Ames, don't make them walk from the parking to the event, feed them the best food in town, Hickory Park Barbecue, then carry their stuffed, portly ass over to the voting machine. Along with this plan, never mention change in any other than rhetorical fashion, so mr and mrs geezer think the SS and medicare checks will keep coming, and ta da you gots yourself a winner.

I had several friends and acquaintances there, all of them remarked on the large numbers of geezers in the Romany contingent. Throw in a number of faithful wearing the Holy underoos and it was a slam dunk.

I was surprised that Brownback did as well as he did, there were not a lot of signs of public support. I guessed he was going to lose to Huckabee but I would have guessed that Tancredo would beat him as well.

It was not just presidential campaigns there though, FairTax had a huge presence as well and the NRA, all six in my family got free hats from NRA, several groups lobbying for change in SS law, repeal of Real ID, even a group trying to petition Alan Keyes to make another run for President.

All the candidates had food, I ate a light breakfast at Tancredo's tent, Krispy Kremes and fresh fruit. Most had a stage with entertainment acts, bands speakers etc. There where lots of families. You know the type, us homeshool parents with 4, 5, 6, or more kids in tow, I know one family with eleven was there. Brownback, Paul and Romany had games, slides, inflatables for the kids to play on.

Ron Paul had by far the most volunteer help there. They literally lined the streets and sidewalks with volunteers holding signs and shouting Ron Paul. I think if all of them could have voted he might have won. Saturday morning Dr. Paul's wife was admitted to the hospital with an irregular heart beat, so he was late arriving at the event.

I had to leave at noon to attend a wedding, so I did not get to hear the speeches. According to my brother, who did not hear them all, Romany was perfect, looked perfect(looked like he spent a week in the tanning bed), spoke perfect, no stutters or stumbles, paused at the right times for applause, just did a perfect acting job playing the part of a conservative in the mold of RR. And the geezers ate it up like candy.

Tancredo on the other hand stuttered and stumbled, spoke during the applause, lost his place several times, so had to look at the written copy, not a good performance by any standard.

And yes I voted for Ron Paul.

more info is in the Des Moines Register Sunday edition online.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

The Iowa Straw Poll

First, let me tell you about my upcoming weekend. Tomorrow, (Friday), I'm taking my first day off in several months. A close friend is getting married on Saturday at 2:00. Friday evening I volunteered to cook the rehearsal supper for his parents. So I'm in the process of loading up the second family truckster(spell check doesn't like that word) with all the necessary things one would require to cook steaks and toast garlic bread on a grill for a group of 50. We will be serving Black Label Certified Angus Beef rib eyes.

Early Saturday morning I will drive from the town where the wedding is to be held, the 15 miles or so to Ames for the Straw Poll. I understand that most of the candidates will start serving food of some kind by 10:00 AM. I think that we can also cast ballots at 10:00 AM. I know that the NRA is having a big shindig, Newt is going to be there shilling for his "think tank"/foundation whatever their calling it these days. Each candidate will give a 15 minute speech starting at noon. I however will need to leave, at or around noon to go back and get dressed for attending the wedding, which starts at 2:00 PM. After the wedding and reception to follow, I will probably change clothes again, then head back to Ames, where they are supposed to announce the winners at 7:00 PM. Then, if I know my wife, she will suggest that we go to Hickory Park in Ames and consume a rack of pork ribs. I tell all of you, with utmost sincerity, they is the best poke ribs I ever done et, period, bar none.

Now the stuff you have been waiting for. Who am I going to vote for?

I will not, nor have I ever to my knowledge voted for a pro-baby killer candidate for any office. So Rudy is out. Since I believe McCain neutered himself with his pro-amnesty position, and I would never vote for anyone who help write, voted for or had anything to do with McCain-Feingold, John is done, stick a fork in him.

I believe that Mitt Romney is one of the most slimy politicians to ever come down the track. This man has changed positions more often than the hands on a clock. I tell you with all sincerity, I would rather have Hillary as a president than this guy. We know Hillary is evil incarnate. The normally spineless Republicans might actually stand up to her. Mitt on the other hand would say and or do anything if he thought it was popular. I think the man would show you his magic underoos if he was convinced it would get a few more votes.

I claim to be a Constitutionalist. I believe that we should treat the founding documents of our secular government exactly how I as a fundamentalist treat the Holy Scripture. Scripture is to be interpreted according to the original intent of the Author. This is why I believe in Sola Scriptura, using Scripture to interpret Scripture. In the same way, we should interpret the Constitution according to the original intent of the writers.

Let me give you an example I mentioned on a previous post. I can find nowhere in the Constitution where the federal government has any authority to be involved in education. In the 2000 race for president, when GWB said that he had a plan called "No Child Left Behind" I refused to vote for him, because that program is outside the jurisdiction of the federal government. He claimed to be a "compassionate conservative" but the first policy he purposed was a vast increase the feds involvement in education.

I referenced an article in the DSM Register about the candidates stand on education. Brownback, Hunter and Tommy Thompson all talked about tinkering around the edges. More teacher, more accountability, more advanced classes, report cards for the schools (Thompson), none of those three mentioned anything about the unconstitutional role the federal government has in doing anything related to education. Romney purposed,(and I'm not making this up) "providing laptops to all middle and high school students". Funny thing, here is the same guy running radio adds in which he claims to be a small government conservative.

The question the Register asked is as follows,
What would you do to ensure U.S. fourth-graders are competitive in academic achievement with their international peers in math science and reading? Only two of the nine candidates gave an answer which fits with my worldview.

I was very disturbed by Mike Huckabee's answer. He said he would create preschool programs and implement a program similar to Arkansas' Smart Start which targets children in kindergarten through forth grade increase standards and accountability measures.
That is not a conservative position. The federal government has no authority to create "mo and better" programs. In fact he sounds a whole lot like GWB on the topic. I will not be voting for Mr. Huckabee. I think he's a nice man, but in the end, he believes that government is the solution to the problem. I believe government is the problem.

Tom Tancredo said, "He does not favor the expansion of the federal governments role in public education." and he would work to repeal "no-child left behind" because it strips away local control.

And Ron Paul said, "he would get the federal government out of the classroom and allow states and local officials and parents to make the decisions that are best for their individual situations."
He also said, " NCLB is unconstitutional legislation that usurped state and local authority over education . He would seek to repeal this law and give the money being spent to America's parents so they could once again be in charge of their children's educations."

So there are two candidates which have actually read and understand the constitution. Ron Paul and Tom Tancredo. All the rest are just liberals, claiming to be Ronald Rega

I will vote for one of the two. I will reveal which one on Sunday evening, since we won't get home till Sunday evening.

So it's Ron Paul and/or Tom Tancredo. I know I left you hanging. I really have not made up my mind. I see positives and negatives for each. Until Sunday evening.

God Bless America

Monday, August 6, 2007

Out of Time

I went and heard Dr. Ron Paul speak tonight. According to a friend my ample backside made it on TV. The lovely Mrs. farmer Tom went with me, then we went to our favorite Mexican place for supper.

It's 11:00 pm and I have to load cattle at 5:00 AM, I'm going to bed. I will provide comments on Dr. Paul's speech tomorrow.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

This You Have Got to See

As I've written or said on numerous occasions, Jan Mickelson on WHO 1040 radio and web is my favorite talk show host. I've heard him turn more than one guest into a quivering puddle of flesh after an intense disscussion of the issues. One of my favorites was a Catholic Priest telling Jan that the Scripture was wrong. I laughed for an hour that morning.

Anyway, Jan had Mitt as a fly by guest on Thursday. It got rather heated off air, Jan even said something to the effect that the off-air conversation was better than the on-air one. This morning I found this video link.

Taylor still has not showed me how to create links, so copy this and paste it, then watch the video, very entertaining stuff.


Here's the video.