Friday, July 1, 2011

Why Have a Constitution?

Why did the founding fathers of our great nation write a Constitution? Seriously, other than the Bill of Rights it seems the Constitution is null and void! If the purpose of the Constitution was to prevent government from getting too big, it has failed. If the Constitution is inclusive to all federal government power grabs, then why write a Constitution? In other words, if the Constitution fails to prevent the federal government from passing laws and legislation that are not included in the initial writings, then why have a Constitution? The document seems to be meaningless. Alexander Hamilton stated the Constitution gives the federal government all powers that are not specifically stated in the document. This is how the document has been interpreted over the past 220 years.

Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution specifically states those enumerated powers granted to Congress. There is nothing written in this section allowing the government to create a Department of Education, Department of Energy, Department of Agriculture, Department of Health and Human Services, Environmental Protection Agency, and dozens of other organizations. So, it begs to reason, why write a document if the federal government can create any agency, department, or organization it sees fit? After all, there is no need for a document if the federal government can do what it pleases.

The federal government has expanded the Necessary Clause of the Constitution to include just about everything they want. Today, the President has used the Necessary Clause to expand the power of the executive branch. Think about it; the President has appointed over 40 czars including a faith, Asian Carp, and car czars. If the federal government can use the Necessary Clause to control Asian Carp in the Great Lakes, then there is nothing the federal government cannot use as an excuse, via the Necessary Clause, to meddle and interfere into our daily lives. So, once again, why have a Constitution?

The federal government has expanded the Commerce Clause of the Constitution to include everything, there are no exceptions. At first the Commerce Clause was needed to protect interstate commerce, but today it includes intrastate commerce including how much each American can farm on their personal property. Today, the federal government is using the Commerce Clause to mandate American citizens to buy a product they may not necessarily want – health insurance. If the federal government can force Americans to buy something they do not want, then what exactly does the Commerce Clause exclude them from doing? Nothing! So, why did the founding fathers write a Constitution in the first place?

The only thing that seems necessary in the Constitution is the Bill of Rights, with exception of the tenth amendment. The tenth amendment gives state government’s all powers not vested by the Constitution to the federal government. Since the Constitution apparently has no constraint for the federal government – then why would the founding fathers include the tenth amendment in the Constitution?

What’s worse, it is not just the legislative and executive branches exploiting the Constitution for political gains, the Supreme Court has ruled on subjects that should be decided by the individual states such as abortion. And the courts have expanded the Contracts Clause of the Constitution far beyond its original scope to protect lenders. So, the question remains, why did our founders write a Constitution if there are no exceptions to the powers of the judicial branch?

The bottom line is that it makes no sense to write the Constitution if it has no intrinsic value. If the Constitution allows the federal government to do everything it wants, then why doesn’t the Constitution say that or better yet, why write a document to define the scope of the powers allowed by each of the three branches of government at all? It simply makes no sense to write a document to define limitless powers. It only makes sense to write a document to restrict and specifically define powers.

My Book: Is America Dying? ( Barnes and Noble)

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