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NeuroTypical

Happy Independence day weekend!

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(I'm roughly paraphrasing Oaks' April GC talk here, so sue me.)
 
The US Constitution is the oldest written constitution still in force today.
It contains the doctrine of moral agency. Meaning, folks should have the maximum freedom to act according to their individual choices. And also meaning that it is wrong for citizens to have no voice in the selection of our rulers or the making of our laws. It provided a framework that would allow it to grow and evolve. Amendments that abolished slavery, and gave women the right to vote, couldn't be included in the original, they had to come later.
 
Five cool principles found in the US Constitution:
- The source of government power is the people. Quite a revolutionary idea when it was signed - most folks figured sovereign power came from the 'divine right of kings' or military power.
- Division of delegated power between the nation and it's states. Basically, all government powers rest in the hands of the states or the people, except for the powers specifically granted the national government.
- Separation of powers. Not a new idea, but a very good one. Courts, the legislature, and the executive - they don't answer to each other - they only have stewardship over their own functions. Human nature seems to dictate that we want more and more power, consolodated in fewer and fewer places. Checks and balances helps us keep that from happening.
- Specific vital guarantees of individual rights, and specific limits on govt authority. Useful against the always-renewing slew of idealistic worldchangers and problemfixers. Sorry friend, it doesn't matter how good your solution is, if it interferes with this or that right enshrined in the bill of rights, then you don't get to have it.
- Coolest principle: We are to be governed by law, and not by individuals. We pledge allegiance to a symbol, not a person. Our oaths are sworn to protect and preserve the constitution, not this or that party or office holder. Everyone gets equal protection, and equal treatment, under the law.
Imperfect, agenda-driven, biased, error-prone, fallible, sinful, fallen humans will always pick ways to rule each other. I'm glad the US picked the Constitution.
Happy Independence Day weekend y'all!
 
American Flag – Medal of Honor Host City Program
Edited by NeuroTypical

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@NeuroTypical - according to my personal opinion you left out one critical element of freedom, liberty and independence.  That is the light of truth which has but one source, that is G-d!  Without a true understanding and faith in the Living G-d (and his son) there is no freedom, liberty and independence - that there are illusions of such is sure but in reality without G-d all hope for justice and any sustainability of freedoms is an illusion.

 

The Traveler

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1 hour ago, NeuroTypical said:

Separation of powers. Not a new idea, but a very good one. Courts, the legislature, and the executive - they don't answer to each other - they only have stewardship over their own functions. Human nature seems to dictate that we want more and more power, consolidated in fewer and fewer places. Checks and balances helps us keep that from happening.

I have to thank Justice Scalia for explaining why this particular structure ensures the freedoms promised in the Bill of Rights.

 

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2 hours ago, NeuroTypical said:

We pledge allegiance to a symbol, not a person.

Clarification: "I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the republic for which it stands..." We pledge allegiance both to the symbol of liberty and to the imperfect reality that tries to emulate the liberty represented by the symbol.

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