Avatar of admin

by

From His Very First State of the Union Utterance, President Obama Got It Wrong

February 13, 2013 in Uncategorized

By Roger Pilon

Roger Pilon

From his very first state-of-the-union utterance last night, associating himself with President Kennedy, President Obama got it wrong, and it was mostly downhill from there: “51 years ago,” he began, “John F. Kennedy declared to this chamber that ‘the Constitution makes us not rivals for power but partners for progress.’” Great alliteration; bad constitutionalism.

Yes, in a very narrow sense the Constitution makes the political branches partners for progress. But it also, most definitely, makes the branches, and those with authority within them, rivals for power. Indeed, throughout the Federalist Papers we learn how the Constitution pits power against power in order to limit power — and government itself.

But limited government was the furthest thing from the president’s mind last night. As Senator Marco Rubio responded, Obama’s “solution to virtually every problem we face is for Washington to tax more, borrow more, and spend more.” Even the Washington Post subtitled its editorial this morning, “Obama’s wish list.”

What then is the narrow sense in which the Constitution makes the political branches “partners for progress”? That takes us back to first principles, which Obama seems not to have encountered when he studied law at Harvard or taught parts of the Constitution at the University of Chicago. The purpose of the political branches is to refine and run the institutional and legal structure the Constitution establishes. That will then enable private individuals and the private organizations they create to flourish. And in a free society, that mainly is how “progress” comes about, not through government but through private initiative. For Obama, however, progress is mainly for government to engineer, through a vast array of manipulative regulations and government “investments.”

Not since Franklin Roosevelt have we had a president with so little appreciation for our basic constitutional system, or so little understanding of basic economics.”

Not since Franklin Roosevelt have we had a president with so little appreciation for our basic constitutional system, or so little understanding of basic economics. And like his New Deal mentor, Obama has overseen an economic recovery that is stalled from the political uncertainty his policies have engendered — from Obamacare to Dodd-Frank, green energy, and so much more — with the slowest economic growth since the Great Depression and unemployment refusing to budge. In fact, during the last quarter the economy actually contracted.

So what is his response to four years of failure? He doubles down on those …read more
Source: OP-EDS

Leave a reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.