You cannot conceive how much I hate this idea.
We’re talking “hate with the heat of a thousand suns”.
We’re talking about repugnant to the very idea of a republic, and the fact that I have recently come to revisit the idea is yet another sign of just how sad our society has become, and yet when I look at the Federal Government in general, and the Senate specifically, I see the combination of aging hippies acting badly and people who have so overstayed their welcome that they have either lost focus or never had it, and have turned a stint in public service into a lucrative sinecure, and an exercise in the centralization and usurpation of power. It doesn’t really matter if we’re discussing Juan McCain and Lindsey Graham and their constant efforts to be the beautiful losers of the Senate, or Diane Feinstein, and her fundamental mistrust of Americans’ ability to exercise their rights unmolested by a top-heavy, control-freaky government hell-bent on removing the teeth of the Constitution so that the coup can be completed.
I first seriously encountered the idea when I read George Will’s Restoration in the early 90s. At that time, I recall being irritated because I felt that Will had not given sufficient consideration to the way that Congress works, or how to replace it. The entire idea was like a beautiful clock. I could admire how it looked, and how it made me feel, but when I turned it over, I could see no works behind the facade. I may go and dig out of the boxes in the garage just to see if I, or George have gotten any smarter in the last two decades.
But after watching the Old Guard’s shameful response to the New GOP members like Rand Paul and Ted Cruz, with the cries of “Wacko Birds!” and the general condescension in response to reminding the Executive Branch that it is NOT an Imperial Branch, and the unwillingness to participate in actions that they do not seem capable of even comprehending the significance of, I see tired “leaders” who lack either the good sense or the self discipline to realize that they have overstayed their welcome, and that perhaps they would be happier set out to pasture, where they could still get plenty of Lapdog Media airtime offering their meaningless “conservative” opinions that aren’t to those who are happy to take an incremental approach to the compromise of liberty, because any time they get a piece of it, they win. These are the same people who think that it “mavericky” to offer up a mealy-mouthed and insincere apology for their gross miscalculation of the importance of something that it never occurred to them to do in the first place.
Then this week came the exchange between Senator Diane Feinstein and Senator Ted Cruz, in which she felt “patronized”, and proclaimed that she has been “up close and personal with the Constitution”, as if that somehow validated her attempts to void the Second Amendment. Assassins often get “up close and personal” with their intended targets, usually when they are getting ready to slip the knife in between the victim’s ribs.
I’ve heard the exchange. I’ve read the exchange. The Senatrix from Sillyfornia wasn’t patronized… but she should have been. A good way to start would have been to ask her “What part of “…shall not be infringed.” is it that you’re having so much trouble grokking?” And when she devolved into her dubious reading of Heller as her justification for inserting The Asterisk where none exists, the proper response would have been “And is the Supreme Court always correct?” If she was dumb enough to say “Yes, of course.”, then to say “Roger Taney thanks you for your validation. 700,000+ Civil War dead are unavailable for comment, however.” As for her appeal to emotion regarding her role in the Harvey Milk killings, it has been noted by Michael Walsh that the gun used in those murders, a police service revolver, is NOT on the list of firearms that she is excited to infringe upon. When taken in total, I can only conclude that it is about the exercise of power for power’s sake. In invoking Heller in the manner in which she did, she shows her hand. Her premise is not to start at the Constitution, and determine if it gives the authority for the power she clearly wants to exercise; it is to start at what she perceives to be the limitation on the Constitution, which is a very different concept. Her incredulity at Cruz pointing out that limitations on the other rights guaranteed in the Bill of Rights demonstrates that she knows the obvious nature of the contradiction she seeks, and knows exactly why it is so important to neuter this right first.
The sad fact is that we have too many elected officials who are too concerned with being liked, or with passing laws because they think they can, and not enough who do not automatically accept the status quo of compromising liberty and assuming that there is no power forbidden to the Federal Government. I see that changing when I see Cruz, Paul, Amash, and others…especially when they start talking about spending and budgets in current terms, rather than pushing them out to Congresses that they may or may not be part of in ten years or more. It feels like a freshening wind, and for Juan McCain, Lindsey Graham, and DiFi, a song: