Category Archives: Perspectives

US Constitution|Timeless Truths


I have often considered it unfortunate that those who call the US Constitution a “Living” document, do so to argue for the flexibility of its meaning. When I first heard the term “Living Constitution,” it brought a completely different picture into my mind. For me, the Constitution lives because the founders built it on consistent truths of the human condition. It lives in us because it was the first governing document which crafted a constituted government designed to keep men […]

Does the Constitution Hang by a Thread?


Some say that large, centralized government began with Franklin D. Roosevelt and his New Deal. Others point to Woodrow Wilson and the expanded powers granted to his presidency during World War I’s “war socialism.” Some go to Theodore Roosevelt; whose strong personality transformed the US Presidency from a symbolic figurehead to the active modern role it plays today. I often go even further into history and comment on the great powers seized by the Radical Republicans after the Civil War, […]

What Are Constitutional Values?


The US Constitution doesn’t exist in a vacuum. There are strong ideological and philosophical underpinnings behind its provisions and framework. In American society, “unconstitutional” is a tremendously heavy word, often tossed around with surprising ease. However, despite the frequency of its use, I have often observed there is an inconsistency with its meaning. There have been many times I have called certain policies unconstitutional and even pointed out certain visions which are in contempt of the constitutional order. Often, I’m […]

Experience, The Oracle of Truth


Often, Americans speak of the US Constitution as if it is the fountain from which political truth originates. Even those who fight stridently for constitutional orthodoxy sometimes forget that the US Constitution and the rest of America’s founding documents were just as much a climax of political thought as they were a beginning.    In my previous article for the Federalist Coalition, I cautioned against allowing federalism to become a casualty of the culture war when I asserted that “federalism […]

The Culture War and Federalism


Federalism is one of the few political mechanisms that benefits everyone. All sides of the political divide should be wary of allowing it to become a casualty in the ever-escalating culture war. The system of federalism created by the Constitution of the United States formed a union of sovereign states. While modern Americans do not generally think of themselves in terms of state identity and citizenship as much as their ancestors did, our laws still maintain a Republic of individual […]

A New Message: VII. On Amendment XVII


This continues a series of articles in which the author draws upon the extensive collection of the thoughts of the Founding Fathers and lets them speak to us relative to the problems we face in the United States today. When we met in convention in Philadelphia that summer of 1787, our new land was in the throes of civil turmoil and economic emergency. Mobs had driven the Congress from the city, court houses in Massachusetts had been fired upon, inflation […]

A New Message: VI. On Political Philosophy


This continues a series of articles in which the author draws upon the extensive collection of the thoughts of the Founding Fathers and lets them speak to us relative to the problems we face in the United States today. One of the dilemmas of the Convention was the need to grant the government authority sufficient to insure domestic tranquility and yet give the people enough control of the government to protect their rights. The solution to the difficulty lay in […]

A New Message: V. On the General Welfare


This continues a series of articles in which the author draws upon the extensive collection of the thoughts of the Founding Fathers and lets them speak to us relative to the problems we face in the United States today. You may have had occasion to observe, in the course of pondering the troubles of your times, that nearly all of your political abuses come from your federal government, and that most of these problems have come to you under the […]

A New Message: IV. Comments on The Bill of Rights


This continues a series of articles in which the author draws upon the extensive collection of the thoughts of the Founding Fathers and lets them speak to us relative to the problems we face in the United States today. How is it that a man loses his rights? There are at least three ways; but each is a result of his own choice. First, he may agree to give them up, and if he has his wits about him, he […]

A New Message: III. On The Constitution


This continues a series of articles in which the author draws upon the extensive collection of the thoughts of the Founding Fathers and lets them speak to us relative to the problems we face in the United States today. There are those among you who heap fault upon your heads, and declare you derelict for your shallow knowledge of the basis and workings of your government. While it is true that you evidence a dangerous lack of understanding of those […]