Perhaps Healthcare Will Be a Catalyst, at Least for a Permanent Alarm

Theodore Gatchel raises the operative question with regard to the reaction to the content and process of the new healthcare legislation:

On the positive side, the process the Democrats have used to pass this legislation appears to have caused more Americans than ever to read the Constitution.
The more they read it, the more they question not just the legitimacy of this particular process, but also how the immense power of today’s federal government can be reconciled with any common-sense reading of the Constitution.

As Gatchel suggests, part of the answer will depend on the direction that the Democrats head from here. If they wipe the dirt off their hands and govern quietly from the center at least through the next election, public ire might subside. If they continue with their radical agenda, whether on immigration, energy, unions, or what have you, they’ll reinforce public opposition.
On the other hand, even in our little blue, heavily propagandized state, we’ve seen people newly involved in a way that suggests a long-term commitment — and a long memory. Even if the politicians manage to lull a critical mass of Americans back into apathetic slumber, there is now a huge nationwide infrastructure for sounding alarms.

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11 years ago

Reading and comprehension are two different things!
I honestly hope a lot of people read the Constitution. It is a very short document and fairly easy to devour. However, without some context, it means little.
I would hope the same folks could digest some bios and history books about Jefferson, Franklin, Hamilton, Monroe, Madison and other others….well, just on those above would do the job.
Most of these books follow the actual letters and speeches of these great men, so it is very easy to see exactly where they are coming from – in context.
Without backstory, the constitution by itself would be of little use. It would be like the Bible, where everyone seems to find what they want (right or wrong) out of it.
I would love seeing more US History taught throughout schools also. IMHO, this is more important than a lot of the rote learning crap they feed our kids these days.

11 years ago

Justin, if they govern from the center, they’ll irritate all the progressives and unions who “put them in office”. I’ve already heard of unions saying that they’re done with Obama and want a new candidate in 2012. Of course they’re not going to get one, nor would they vote for a Republican candidate, but it is an interesting spot that Obama has put the Dems in.

11 years ago

Would that the Me Party, antigovernment folks actually read more of Jefferson than what they saw on Glenn Beck’s blackboard.

The care of human life and happiness and not their destruction is the first and only legitimate object of good government.
–Thomas Jefferson to Maryland Republicans, 1809.

That’s right, the first and only legitimate object. Jefferson was clear on what constituted wasteful and foolish government.

Never was so much false arithmetic employed on any subject, as that which has been employed to persuade nations that it is their interest to go to war. Were the money which it has cost to gain, at the close of a long war, a little town, or a little territory, the right to cut wood here, or to catch fish there, expended in improving what they already possess, in making roads, opening rivers, building ports, improving the arts, and finding employment for their idle poor, it would render them much stronger, much wealthier and happier. This I hope will be our wisdom.
— Thomas Jefferson, Notes on Virginia, 1782.

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