The Federal Government, In Practice (September 15, 2014)

. . .

S          “So the Founding Fathers are blamed for and credited with many things.  Everyone agrees they were inspired by Montesquieu’s notion of the separation of powers providing for executive, legislative and judicial functions.  The division of labor and duties seems so clean and elegant in your civics class.  Yet, in practice, the process is so tainted and untidy.”

T          “In my class, I try to tidy up the mess.  I present this outline of the grand plan on the board to spark discussion:

Post 1787:          Theory:     Practice:

President            34%           30% (implement laws)
Congress             33%           60% (make laws)
Judiciary             33%           10% (interpret laws)
National Bank      0%             0% (inspire debate)

The judiciary was little more than an administrative agency with possibility until the Supreme Court developed the doctrine of judicial review in Marbury v. Madison in 1803.  The political plate tectonics shifted and now we have:

2014:

President                             44% (determines most major domestic and foreign policy initiatives)

Congress                              21% (drives economic activities via substantial ad hoc spending largely for defense, interest and entitlements)

Judiciary                              35% (makes laws)

Federal Reserve                 33% (the private bank with the misleading name establishes monetary policy and directs fiscal policy by default because of Congressional grid lock and thus effectively runs the economy, with little public participation)

National Security State    39% (shapes domestic and foreign affairs via a motley and myriad montage of agencies, contractors, sub-contractors and others with little oversight)

S          “So sixty-eight percent of government policy is imposed by federal judges and the Federal Reserve Board of Governors/Big Bankers who are not elected.”

T          “The Founding Fathers are said to have been anti-democratic.  I know they would be surprised at what has emerged in practice in America.”

S          “So thirty-nine percent of domestic and foreign surveillance and activities are determined by unknown and unaccountable agents and operatives.”

T          “Who knows.”

. . .

S          “So we need to track the federal Debt which is now over 17 Trillion dollars and also the Federal Reserve Debt which is now over 4 Trillion dollars.”

T          “While you are at it, try to fathom the 100s of Trillions of dollars in derivatives that were never on the Founding Fathers’ radar and are off the public radar today.”

S          “That fraud will doom the Republic some day.”

. . .

S          “So the Big Bankers favor war because it is so profitable, so the large number of Big Bankers in power results in an over-production of war.”

T          “Accord.”

. . .

T          “Republicans want a powerful ‘unitary’ President when a Republican is in the White House and an effete President when a Democrat is in the White House.”

S          “And everyone agrees that federal judges are politicians in black robes.”

T          “Accord, young scholar.  See why this is so much fun.”

. . .

[T:  Teacher; S:  Student]

Bumper stickers of the week:

The Declaration of Independence is America’s Original Organic Poem.  The Constitution is America’s Owners’ Manual.  Signed on September 17, 1787.

There is no law.  There is only ideology.

One Response to “The Federal Government, In Practice (September 15, 2014)”

  1. Hi, S. I’d put the Fed at 25-40%, depending on whether you include its Wall Street cronies or not. With a resulting weakening of power of everything else. Yes, it all seemed so clean and well-defined in Civics class.

    “Give me control of a nation’s money and I care not who makes it’s laws” — Mayer Amschel Bauer Rothschild

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