The American experiment: From birth to bureaucracy (letter)
239 years ago, the British Colonists in America declared their independence from the King and founded a new nation because of a long list of tyrannical grievances. They won a Revolutionary War against the strongest military force in the Western world. We celebrate each year on July 4th the freedom we gained from tyranny with a holiday topped off with amazing fireworks displays.
The Founders resolved those grievances by designing a government that had never been tried before based on the principle of self-government which derives its powers from the consent of the governed. They also recognized the need to institute the unalienable rights that are the foundation of humanity: Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.
The people ratified a constitution with enumerated powers, which secured those rights and spread power among three equal branches: one to pass laws, another to execute them and a third to adjudicate them. Most of the governing powers remained in the sovereign states. Checks and balances were incorporated to avoid the tyranny from which the Founders declared their independence. We as a nation adhered to this constitution for over a hundred years, creating the highest standard of living in recorded history.
However, in the second hundred years and into the third, We the People have elected governments that believe technological advances have rendered self-government obsolete, regardless of unalienable rights. Now, the Legislative branch, without even reading them, passes complex laws — many of which fall outside the scope of enumerated powers. Then the Executive branch appoints bureaucracies of highly-trained people — who know best how we should live — to write contradictory instructions into laws that include mandates and restrictions plus the power to define, enforce and adjudicate them. The unalienable rights of the people and the Judiciary are ignored, leaving full governing powers in the Executive branch.
Since then, We the People have accumulated an $18-trillion debt and unwittingly turned over our food, shelter, safety, initiative, health care, child care, education and environment to bureaucrats. We have been experiencing less freedom and suffering more tyranny each 4th of July ever since.
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