Archive | July, 2014

Constitution 101: Was the Bill of Rights Meant to Apply to the States?

stateflagmap

Last week we began examining the Bill of Rights. This week we will address a specific question: was the Bill of Rights intended to apply to the state governments? Some people argue that it was. They concoct some interesting arguments based on “rules of construction” or approach it through various philosophies of rights and liberty […]

I Hate Monopolies! Now Give Me A Monopoly!

monopoly_intl_pack_logo

Americans hate monopolies. Except when they don’t. Consider this Facebook post I ran across taking a free-market advocate to task. Under the system you propose, trillionaires would be created by default. No reasons, crappy or otherwise would be needed. We’d ditch our anti-trust anti-monopoly law because those require a pretty strong central government to investigate […]

Constitution 101: The Bill of Rights

bill of rights_cropped

I was originally planning on looking at the Second Amendment this week, but it occurred to me that we should examine the Bill of Rights more generally before digging into specific provisions. Adding a declaration of rights to the Constitution was a condition of ratification for several states, and five state ratification documents included specific […]

Step Off the 3×5 Card of Acceptable Opinion

3x5

I’ve noticed a lot of Americans have a complete inability to consider any idea that falls outside of the 3×5 index card of acceptable opinion. (Thank you Tom Woods for that vivid metaphor!) When confronted with a concept that strays beyond what they consider “mainstream,” I find that many people recoil reflexively. I hear things […]

Constitution 101: What Does it Mean to ‘Declare War?’

I-Declare-War-Jay-Shaw-Poster-Mondo

In last week’s Constitution 101 article, we looked at war powers and determined that it was the role of Congress, not the president, to initiate war. Article I Sec. 8 delegates Congress the power to “declare war.” Article II Sec. 2 designates the president “Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United […]

Don’t Be an A-Hole

coal-roller

In order to have a functioning free society, its members must live responsibly and treat each other with basic civility. Critics of conservatives and libertarians often charge that they don’t really care about anybody else and that they exhibit an “I’ll do whatever I want, damn the consequences,” mentality. Sadly, some seem bound and determined […]

Constitution 101: War Powers

us_declares_war

Over the last several weeks, we’ve looked at the “general welfare,” “necessary and proper,” and “commerce” clauses, three constitutional provisions often used by progressives to expand federal power, and we established what those clauses actually mean. While liberal constitutional interpreters abuse those clauses, scholars and politicians have utterly disregarded the proper understanding of war powers. […]

Independence: A Revolutionary Idea

dec

Today, Americans celebrate America. We wave flags. We thank the troops. We shoot off fireworks. We march in parades.  And we talk about the greatness of America and her fight for independence. But the Fourth of July has come to mean something far deeper than a celebration of the birth of a “nation” to me. […]

Americans Playing Monopoly: Court Takes On Another Case It Shouldn’t

Oblique_facade_2,_US_Supreme_Court

In the United States, we have a monopoly government by judiciary. Not only have we monopolized almost all power at the federal level, we have placed nearly unlimited authority in the hands of nine federal employees staffing the Supreme Court. On top of exercising virtually unlimited veto power over every state and local law, these […]

Smash the Frame!

glass

In the wake of the Supreme Court Hobby Lobby decision, I wrote a blog post for the Tenth Amendment Center arguing that the opinion doesn’t warrant celebration. To you conservatives in celebration mode as you dissect the overlords’ opinion on religious beliefs and health insurance mandates, you might want to pause for just a moment […]