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View Diary: The Imperial Senate (237 comments)

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  •  I'd be much happier with a petty Congress that... (7+ / 0-)

    jealously guarded its prerogatives in the most small minded of ways, than with the supine assemblage we have that begs the president to grant them new opportunities to demonstrate their loyalty to him.

    •  the founders, while idealistic in many ways, (6+ / 0-)

      were experienced, brilliant, and ruthlessly pragmatic men.

      They didn't trust to the goodness of human nature to keep their marvelous system balanced. They trusted to a more basic part of the human psyche: jealousy over one's own power.

      They intended Congress to be in a perpetual state of antagonism towards the president, jealously struggling to maintain every scrap of its own power against the executive. To always question him and challenge him and be forever skeptical of him.

      They also intended the judiciary, who were appointed for life, to be free of political concerns and thus free to check the power of the executive.

      Only in this way could the system maintain its delicate balance, and only in this way could tyranny be averted.

      Now the system is very badly broken. And it's not even clear if it can be fixed.

      •  Exactly (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        limpidglass, James Kresnik

        They didn't trust to the goodness of human nature.

        Personally, I don't think human nature has change one iota in the short span of a couple of hundred years. But that doesn't stop people from projecting super human traits onto their leaders.

        While some of these leaders may be relatively good people, each and every one of them is still a human being with all of the traits handed down through countless generations of a very competitive specie.

        Few things behave against their nature and that's what our Founding Fathers knew quite well.

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