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Tag Archives: Government

“To the Size of States There is a Limit”

What is a Republic and does it contain an element of representation?  In the US Constitutional context, James Madison defined republic as “…a government in which the scheme of representation takes place…” and “…the delegation of the government, in the latter [republic], to a small number of citizens elected by the rest…” –Federalist #10.  John Adams defined republic as “…a government, in which all men, rich and poor, magistrates and subjects, officers and people, masters and servants, the first citizen and the last, are equally subject to the laws.”  Also, the word republic was used specifically to describe a non-monarchical constitution during the writing and ratifying of the US Constitution. 

According to Donald Livingston, in his lecture Size, Scale, and American Republicanism, in the Greek traditions of republican governments, a republic requires three things:

1)      The citizens make the laws in which they live under;

2)      Legislation must be in accord with inherited tradition or common law, which they do not make – The Rule of Law;

3)      Human Scale – that is they must be small.

In a classical sense of the term representation does not appear to be a requisite for a republican form of government.  It might be inferred that because the citizens make the laws that representation is required, however it is not required that citizens be represented in order for them to participate in the lawmaking.  In the United States under the Constitution, a republican form of government was defined to include representation as a mode of citizen participation in the lawmaking process. 

So what does Donald Livingston mean when he refers to laws being made in accord with inherited tradition?  Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on December 22, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

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A World with Only One Color

In a world where everything is red, it sure is hard to explain blue.  And so it is with liberty.  In our world today where government has assumed so many roles and responsibilities, it is sometimes very difficult to explain a world where true liberty, void of government intervention, could exist. 

Today’s political toy of the minute is the payroll tax cut.  The Democrats say that we must pass this tax cut and “pay” for it with a small increase in taxes on the wealthy.  The Republicans say that is fine as long as we get this oil pipeline passed so that we can “create jobs”.  The premise of both arguments is all red.  Red, red, red.  No concept of blue.  Perhaps they should not be arguing over these trivial matters of how much money they are going to take from people but should instead be arguing whether they should be taking our money at all.  Red and blue.  Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on December 15, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

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Capitalism is Amazing

Capitalism is amazing.  And by capitalism I mean free people associating with other free people in order to produce and consume goods and services.  The other day I bought a ceiling fan from Home Depot.  I love Home Depot.

As I walked into the store with my very specific purchase in mind, I noticed a pallet of various bags of mulch and soil.  The whole pallet was reduced to a few dollars.  I noticed the products were imperfect.  The bags had holes torn in them, some product had spilled out, or had they had some other deficiency.  This is one of the amazing parts of capitalism:  imperfect products are either completely thrown out (like rotten or imperfect food in a grocery store) or sold at extremely reduced prices.  Why does this happen?  It happens because you, the consumer, want and demand a perfect product.  And because you, the individual making your own decisions influencing the decisions of the capitalist, get to be in charge.  Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on November 29, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

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