It bears repeating: The Constitution was meant to restrict GOVERNMENT and not Individuals. Progressives, however, have inverted that:
Note that once constitutional barriers have been lowered during a crisis, a legal precedent has been established giving government greater potential for expansion in subsequent noncrisis periods, particularly those that can be plausibly described as crises. – Robert Higgs (Crisis and Leviathan)
Will this Kung Flu epidemic, along with the Politician-created economic disaster really shove us into America’s post-Constitutional era?
SHOT: NH Governor Sununu: “Public health trumps everything!” or
We’ve been writing about Governor Sununu but he, too, has put a kibosh on congregate religious worship with his limitations of how many people can gather together. NH Gov. Phil Murphy went on Tucker Carlson and let the mask slip:
Fox News host Tucker Carlson pressed Murphy on the constitutionality of his recent executive orders that deem liquor stores essential and business and churches nonessential, which Murphy said he did not consider.
“As I noted before, 15 congregants at a synagogue in New Jersey were arrested and charged for being in a synagogue together. Now, the Bill of Rights, as you well know, protects Americans’ right, enshrines their right, to practice their religion as they see fit and to congregate together, to assemble peacefully. By what authority did you nullify the Bill of Rights in issuing this order? How do you have the power to do that?” Carlson asked.
“That’s above my pay grade, Tucker,” Murphy responded, saying he “wasn’t thinking of the Bill of Rights when we did this. . . We went to the scientists who said people have to stay away from each other”.”
“Well, I can tell,” Tucker interjected.
Indeed. Look, we here at GraniteGrok understand that in the fog of war or emergency, there are a lot of unknown unknowns. In this case, miserable models that originally showed up to 2 million Americans dying. That’s a big absolute number – but but that translates to 0.625% of our population. Here in NH, the projected number is (now, it keeps changing) 76 deaths – with a population of 1.35 million residents that translates to 0.006% of the population. To date here in NH, half have been in old aged / nursing homes. But does that (and I repeat myself again) require the values of both our NH and the US Constitutions to be voided? I direct you back to the initial quote.
Yep, this IS a bugaboo for me right now. Our politicians direct the Government (not US, the Government only); that is their mission. But…
NH State Rep. Debra DeSimone (R): “The Constitution is a guideline”
NH State Rep. Sandra Keans (R, now D): “I don’t try to justify anything by the Constitution, it’s not my job and I don’t want to do it”.
More and more, the Constitution(s) are no longer being used for the purpose for which they were created. They make “lanes” whereby politicians guiding the ships of State should remain. The purpose are to put down markers “do not cross”. Or, using the linguistics of a popular board game: “Do not pass GO and do not collect $200”. It is supposed to keep we Individuals safe from their actions. There are no “escape clauses” within them that emergencies would allow politicians to govern any which way they want. It doesn’t say “when experts say” that their precepts can be tossed into the trash heap (and maybe restored whole when said emergencies are over – history has shown that politicians NEVER totally release ill-gotten Power.
But it requires one small little detail – that the people we elect will actually fulfill their oaths and OBEY it – the black and white letter of these legal documents and to the Spirit of them as well. Exhibit A of a Governor actually putting these values in FRONT of making decisions is South Dakota’s Kristi Noem (here). She recognized that Government serves the people – not controls them. The point of Government is to PROTECT their Liberty – and not, effectively, lock them down.
BOTH Murphy and Sununu are absolutely wrong in both their statement. Unless we are militarily attacked, those strictures are ALWAYS to be obeyed. Yes, they are COMMANDS – the Bill of Rights in both Constitutions DEFEND us FROM them. Yet, neither seems to have this understanding. Or worse, they just have no problem in ignoring them.
Democrat Murphy is making the same argument that many in his position are doing – subverting the Constitution because SCIENTISTS! Anything that these expert technocrats say are OBVIOUSLY more important than your “operating manual”. This is the end goal of Progressives – rule by technocrats and politicians are useless window dressings. I’m not saying that advice by experts is not needed – but that advice should NEVER be the governance itself. We don’t elect experts – we elect representatives. Right now we are hearing from the NH Democrats, especially those seeking election, that the experts should be deciding what happens. They have drunk deep of the Progressive Kool-aid and wish that the rest of us would just get along with that foreign political philosophy.
That’s not how it is supposed to work – we do elect our leaders who are then tasked with making the decisions, not technocrats, as they SHOULD be making those decisions based on multiple inputs. Murphy, Sununu, Cuomo, Baker….are they TRULY considering that the most important input should ALWAYS be the Constitution?
Look at the lockdown of our people in NH and the ruble of what our economy has and will become. In this case, it is doubtful. After all, look at the kinds of decisions and activities we are now NO LONGER allowed to make – do the words match the speeches?
I posit no, they aren’t. I also posit that elected representatives that FAIL to put the Constitutions first should be turned out of office at the next possible opportunity.
We’ll see. First example will be when MI Governor “Half” Whitmore comes up for reelection for basically becoming a tin-pot despot to the point that “Operation Gridlock” had up to 200,000 Michiganders protesting and circling their State House in protest:
Heh! Liberty Block:
Democratic opposition to Sununu’s indefinite shutdown of businesses and schools in the state should not be a surprise, but he has been harshly criticized by many conservatives, as well. Attorney and former State Representative, Dan Hynes has been very vocal about Sununu’s overblown and borderline tyrannical shutdown of the state economy, a cure which could kill more people than the actual virus. A large & influential conservative blog, GraniteGrok.com has grown more critical of Sununu’s decision as the shutdown extends from weeks to months. Of course, the governor must be under tremendous pressure from many sides to lock down the state indefinitely.
But more seriously, in that same post:
Another former legislator and entrepreneur, Keith Murphy has suffered massively from the Governor’s executive order. A day before the Governor’s Tweet, Murphy announced that he was forced to fire his last employees and shut down the last of his businesses, which included ‘Murphy’s Taproom’ and ‘Murphy’s Diner’ in Manchester and ‘Murphy’s Taproom & Carriage House’ in Bedford. One needs to consider that the tremendous psychological toll of the enormous financial strain this has caused could result in a severe blow to the mental health of New Hampshire residents, even to the extent of resorting to alcohol, illicit drugs, or other dangerous and damaging means to handle the unprecedented hardships now legally imposed upon them. We have already seen domestic abuse rising throughout the US from the increased stress and forced isolation of families. Combine that with the stress of the virus caused by the media and the Governor. And then combine that with gyms throughout NH being forced to close by threat of violence at the hands of the Governor’s enforcers and local police.
I know that his staff is starting to feel the pinch. Sununu’s dilemma is no longer just “Collective Safety & Security” vs “Individual Liberties”.
He’s now on the hot seat of “what’s my poll numbers gonna be with my base if I keep this up?” and “will I be able to get elected as my town’s dogcatcher at the end of all this?”.
If he keeps the screws down simply because of the southeast corner of the state, I would start hazarding between glum and non-existent.