The Daily Sandwich

"We have to learn the lesson that intellectual honesty is fundamental for everything we cherish." -Sir Karl Popper

Location: Boston, Massachusetts, United States


Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Alexander Hamilton hates George Bush

From the Federalist Papers:
To what purpose then require the co-operation of the Senate? I
answer, that the necessity of their concurrence would have a
powerful, though, in general, a silent operation. It would be an
excellent check upon a spirit of favoritism in the President, and
would tend greatly to prevent the appointment of unfit characters
from State prejudice, from family connection, from personal
attachment, or from a view to popularity. In addition to this, it
would be an efficacious source of stability in the administration.

It will readily be comprehended, that a man who had himself the
sole disposition of offices, would be governed much more by his
private inclinations and interests, than when he was bound to submit
the propriety of his choice to the discussion and determination of a
different and independent body, and that body an entire branch of
the legislature. The possibility of rejection would be a strong
motive to care in proposing. The danger to his own reputation, and,
in the case of an elective magistrate, to his political existence,
from betraying a spirit of favoritism, or an unbecoming pursuit of
popularity, to the observation of a body whose opinion would have
great weight in forming that of the public, could not fail to
operate as a barrier to the one and to the other. He would be both
ashamed and afraid to bring forward, for the most distinguished or
lucrative stations, candidates who had no other merit than that of
coming from the same State to which he particularly belonged, or of
being in some way or other personally allied to him, or of
possessing the necessary insignificance and pliancy to render them
the obsequious instruments of his pleasure.
I'm not a regular listener of Randi Rhodes, but she deserves the credit for bringing up this bit of argumentation from a legendary figure in the struggle for American independence. It works for both Roberts and Miers (who are both corporate attorneys, I might add). The administration has offered up two nominees who are essentially ciphers. And the check on the power of the White House has been abandoned by sycophantic partisans and chicken-hearted opposition.

Conscience is no longer a factor for the American right. And "strict constructionism" is nothing more than reactionary code for returning America to the age of bigotry, corporatism and government non-accountability. Welcome to it. The GOP isn't a party of conservatism-- it's a party of regressivism.