Thursday, January 24, 2013

The Founders had a chance to discuss Progressivism, and they rejected it

For those of you who didn't catch the tail end of Mark Levin's show Tuesday night, here's what he discussed in the last 5 minutes.(mp3)

At the Constitutional Convention, July 17th, 1787, delegate Gunning Bedford of Delaware made the following proposal:

Mr. BEDFORD moved that the 2d. member of Resolution 6. be so altered as to read "and moreover to legislate in all cases for the general interests of the Union, and also in those to which the States are separately incompetent," or in which the harmony of the U. States may be interrupted by the exercise of individual Legislation."

That proposal has progressivism written all over it. And as is made clear by the debate that ensued, the Founders resoundly rejected it.

Mr. RANDOLPH. This is a formidable idea indeed. It involves the power of violating all the laws and constitutions of the States, and of intermeddling with their police.
Mr. L. MARTIN considered the power as improper & inadmissible. Shall all the laws of the States be sent up to the Genl. Legislature before they shall be permitted to operate?

I liked the opening line of Madison's comment the best:

Mr. MADISON, considered the negative on the laws of the States as essential to the efficacy & security of the Genl. Govt. The necessity of a general Govt. proceeds from the propensity of the States to pursue their particular interests in opposition to the general interest.

In other words, the states have a specific claim to persue their own best interests, regard of whatever is being called the "general interest" of the day. For Madison, the states were never incompetent; or, certainly not nearly as incompetent as the federal government.(or, as the Founders then referred to it, the general government) Hello 10th amendment. 9th amendment too.

The proposal created quite an outburst, as is made evident by this:

Mr. Govr. MORRIS was more & more opposed to the negative. The proposal of it would disgust all the States.

I would encourage all to listen to the last few minutes, starting at 1:07. It should be noted that the primary pillar of progressive ideology is rule by unelected bureaucrats, but said rule needs to have no opposition from some pesky state legislature.

"We are impatient of state legislatures"

Yeah you are, Mr. Wilson. You certainly are.

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