Regular readers of Time magazine this week found in their mailbox yet another pile of leftist tripe in the vein of “the Constitution is a living document.” This week’s cover article by managing editor Richard Stengel is a freak show of anti-Constitutional babble including an assertion that the Constitution was not intended to limit government: “If the Constitution was intended to limit the federal government, it sure doesn’t say so…The truth is, the Constitution massively strengthened the central government of the U.S. for the simple reason that it established one where none had existed before.”
One would have to go through the trouble of taking the Constitution seriously in order to demonstrate that, yes, the Constitution is supposed to limit government. Stengel writes “Article I, Section 8, the longest section of the longest article of the Constitution, is a drumroll of congressional power. And it ends with the “necessary and proper” clause.” Stengel, who as former President and CEO of the National Constitution Center ought to know better, conveniently ignores that the enumeration of powers is itself a limitation on government. The need to list powers in the first place acknowledges that there are certain powers government does not have. Stengel demonstrates that he is well aware that the Framers were opposed to unlimited government, but his belief that limits on government were not a major concern is unfounded.
Stengel also gives scarce recognition to the 10th Amendment, which reserves powers all other powers the states and the people. If the Constitution were really designed to empower the federal government to do everything that liberals want to do, neither the enumerated powers nor the 10th Amendment would have been necessary, and the Framers need only have written the necessary and proper clause, and left it with that. NRO’s John Pitney demolishes Stengel on this point rather concisely HERE.
The limits placed on central government in the Constitution, checks and balances and Bill of Rights, haven’t yet penetrated Stengel’s thick skull. The 1oth Amendment is one of the most powerful measures against centralized government:
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.
Stengel also thinks ObamaCare is constitutional. A federal district judge in Virginia made a point of introducing the ObamaCare creators to the Constitution. Like other ‘experts’, maybe he just finds it too confusing to figure out.
Note to Time Magazine: Your managing editor doesn’t know what the fuck he’s talking about.
- Time Magazine: Constitution Doesn’t Limit Government, ObamaCare Constitutional (gunnyg.wordpress.com)
- Stupidest Editorial Ever (doubleplusundead.com)