Harvard professor Alan Dershowitz is one of my favorite liberals. He is typically a reasonable, insightful man who hates MoveOn.org and writes a magical book. That said, he shouldn’t even be teaching Constitution 101.
I praised Alan Dershowitz for his courage during the George Zimmerman trial, when he called out special prosecutor Angela Corey for tainting our judicial system with her own political ambition, demanding her disbarment.
I am also quick to praise his new book, Taking The Stand: My Life In The Law, which I would highly recommend and wish him the greatest of success with sales. However, his interview on Geraldo Rivera, during which he debated Fox News’ Eric Bolling over ObamaCare, Sen. Ted Cruz and the shutdown, was deeply troubling.
As a professor at Harvard, who teaches constitutional law no less, several of his arguments and claims reflect only one of two possibilities, neither of which are particularly encouraging. Let’s begin with Alan Dershowitz suggesting that we should revoke the power of the purse held by the House of Representatives — or, even modify its power in certain circumstances — i.e., in the event of a “perceived” threat of default or government shutdown.
The first possibility, though an unlikely one, is that somehow Alan Dershowitz made it through his entire academic career without fully grasping why our Founders thought it was a self-evident, common sense necessity to entrust the power of the purse to the body of government that best reflects the will of We the People — the House of Representatives. The second possibility, and far more historically likely, is a great deal more nefarious in nature.
Alan Dershowitz, as all progressives, dream of having an unrestrained ruler, because We the People are too stupid to know what we truly need or want from and for our government. The Senate, with a popularly elected “permanent share of government,” is a rubber stamp for a “rich and well-born” dynamic executive branch, and the only obstacle to total control is that pesky will of the people, who are too stupid to even know that we are already ruled. Of course, the will of We the People manifests in the House of Representatives, where lawmakers are most responsive to their constituents, as they are the closest body to We the People.
Regardless, if we look at the example of ObamaCare, it becomes illogical and indefensible to hold either position, while still maintaining that progressivism holds the promise of freedom and liberty. The Constitution is a liberty-defending document, and every progressive defilement to its rule of law in the past, as well as current or future propositions made by Dershowitz and others, has and will always result in tyranny, government dysfunction, social unrest and democratic despotism.
The Tea Party, for instance, is a demon of the president’s own design, an equal and opposite Natural Law reaction to Obama and the Democrats’ attempts — which were successful, unfortunately — to impose unpopular policy on the American people. During the ObamaCare debate, neither the president nor the lock-step, rubber-stamp lawmakers in the Democratic Party felt obliged to respond to constituent opposition over the government takeover of healthcare.
And in their minds they didn’t have to, because the passage of the Seventeenth Amendment has long ensured states no longer have their constitutional power to oppose policy that is not in their interest, which left it up to the House of Representatives to be the sole voice of the vast majority of Americans who didn’t — and still do not — even want the law in the first place.
In true despotic fashion, Obama and the Democrats ignored those voices, rammed through the bill, and sacrificed the last of the conservative Democrats in the House who still believed in a responsive, representative republic over “cannibalistic Democracy,” as Madison described it.
Intimidating the Supreme Court in the Rose Garden, coupled with an order to the state-run media to ostracize him, resulted in Chief Justice Roberts actually switching his vote, upholding the law that everyone knows is unconstitutional. Now, any attempt to rollback, improve, or dismantle a failed law by the branch of government who actually possesses the power to do so, is answered by the tyrant with a “crisis and leviathan,” which is where Alan Dershowitz made another unreconcilable mistake in his argument against Eric Bolling.
Eric Bolling correctly argued, and a Moody’s memo affirmed, there was never any threat of default, just a manufactured “perception” as Dershowitz claims. But who manufactured that perception if not Barack Obama and his rubber-stamping, Democrat Majority Leader Harry Reid-controlled Senate? I am certain a despot like Barack Obama would love to adopt the proposal by Alan Dershowitz to reform the power of the purse. Barack Obama is already manufacturing crisis after crisis at a rate that would result in the House never holding the purse strings under such a proposal.
For those who aren’t convinced progressivism is a tyrannical ideology, the definition of a despot is “a ruler with absolute power and authority, who exercises that power tyrannically.” Tyrannical, is defined as “ruling against the will of those he rules, often in an unfair and cruel manner.”
Steamrolling over the House of Representatives, the American people, and a cowardly Supreme Court justice fits the definition above, verbatim.
Now, more than ever, we must trust and ally with lawmakers in the House of Representatives, because now that they have corrupted our representative republic with the passage of the Seventeenth Amendment, the people’s House is all that stands between We the People and a despotic executive who enjoys the full support of a complacent Senate.
Eric Bolling, twice, expressed his disbelief that parents would take out their checkbook and pay for their children to be educated in all matters constitutional in a class headed up by Alan Dershowitz, to which, both Geraldo Rivera and Dershowitz quickly responded with slight outrage that Bolling was out of line disrespecting a Harvard professor. But which instance should We the People in a freedom-loving society be more outraged over? Eric Bolling breaking some constructed societal rule or, a man who is either ignorantly or willfully teaching our children despotic, dangerous philosophy that will result in tyranny by popular support?
It was for this very reason I wrote Our Virtuous Republic, to remind Americans not just of the reasons behind these structural constitutional measures, but also of their unique national identity. The progressive academic establishment, both in secondary and higher education, refuses to teach the true American heritage, which is a heritage of empowerment that rendered government almost completely unnecessary and improper. America was a nightmare for despots, because when people have little or no need for dependence on government, the tyrant rules over no one and nothing.
And if conservatives or, all freedom-loving Americans of all stripes, want to keep the freedom they love so much, then they must win the argument, which cannot be done without educating more Americans about the dangers of progressive, relative government Alan Dershowitz favors. We cannot win the argument by allowing ourselves to be confined to the cage of political correctness that was purposely constructed to control the debate.
As for Alan Dershowitz, he wrote a really great book, but rather than teach our children about the Constitution, Dershowitz should go back to the drawing board of human history and study tyranny, because he can’t even recognize it when it is on full display.