Hot Winds from Washington, the Press, the Imperial Presidency, and You

 

I’d like to speak to you today about how you are contributing to the fall of the republic. Yes, I do mean you. Oh, I don’t think that it’s intentional on your part. I’m certain you mean well and would like to see our republic strong and healthy for years to come. But, I’ve been watching you, and actions speak louder than words. Quite frankly, your words are also much too loud and supporting the demolition of the republic, but your actions are even worse. You act as if you have forgotten what it is to be a free and sovereign citizen of a republic.

In a republic, the sovereignty rests with the citizens. They are the deciders. They elect people to represent them in governments at various levels, but these representatives are merely citizens hired to do the business of their constituents. They are not elevated above their fellow citizens, they are selected and paid to serve, like you might hire a maid or a gardener or a plumber. Monarchy means the rule of one, and in a monarchy, the sovereignty rests in the monarch. A monarchy does not have citizens, the monarch has subjects. So, why are so many of you free and sovereign citizens acting as if you were subjects of a monarch?

“I’m doing no such thing!” you shout.

First, it’s useless to shout. We’re probably not even in the same state. You’re going to wear out your vocal cords. Second, it’s all this shouting that is the trouble in the first place. That’s especially true with what y’all are usually shouting about.

Shall we have some examples?

The President of the United States is asked about a local riot by the press. This is the first problem. Remember a few paragraphs ago where I mentioned how in a republic the officials are only elected and appointed for limited things, that they are our servants? If the maid you hire to clean your house holds the opinion that zebu are better than western cattle, do you care? Is this within the scope of her duties? I mean, if she is constantly spouting off on the greatness of zebu meat, all unsolicited, you might ask her to stop talking about it, especially if you’re a vegetarian. But are you going to ask her about it and give her opinion great weight on the matter just because you hired her to clean your house? I mean, she’s not even the cook. Who in Harry’s sweet acre cares what she thinks about cattle?

The President of the United States is hired by the people to defend the Constitution and to faithfully execute the laws that are properly passed. The Constitution restricts the Federal Government to a very limited list of things that they are supposed to do. Commenting on local riots is not on that list. Suppressing local riots is not on the list unless said locale happens to be on federal land. The President’s opinion on a local riot is no more important than my opinion or your opinion or, assuming your maid is a citizen, your maid’s opinion on the aforementioned local riot. The President is usually not even from the same state where the riot occurs. President Trump is certainly not from Virginia, for instance. Giving what the President says more weight than deserved on a subject outside of his jurisdiction is one step towards the fall of the republic.

Partially, this is the press not doing their job. Even a press in opposition is being sycophantic when they give our hired employee’s opinion on specific events more credence than is earned or associated with the position. You are understanding me correctly if you are reading this as calling out even the most Progressive elements of our press corps as Donald Trump’s sycophants. You should call them this, too. It feels good and brings a smile. “Hey, Jim Acosta! Why are you Donald Trump’s sycophant?”

Now you may question my use of the word. Doesn’t sycophant mean someone who is servile and a flatterer? But isn’t it servile, self-seeking flattery to act as if someone in power’s every word on every subject matters? They may be trying to tear him down, but they are in reality building him up to be much more important, much more monarchical, much more imperial than the position warrants.

So, what about you? Are you upset about how the President answered the question? Are you pleased over what he said? Have you been yelling either at the president or cheering for him as things unfolded? If you’ve been feeling those emotions, you, too, are supporting the imperial presidency and the fall of the republic.

On the other hand, if you think, “Who in Harry’s sweet acre cares what he thinks about that? We hired him to protect the Constitution and execute the properly-passed federal laws,” and are disgusted with the press for being sycophants, congratulations. You are one of the few still acting like the sovereign citizen of a republic.

No, I am not trying to tell you what to think. Think whatever you please. I am merely pointing out the consequences of your actions. Don’t look at me that way. Instead, let’s look at some other recent events in the news.

Mrs. Trump was seen boarding an aircraft wearing stiletto heels on her way to the flood zone in Texas. Again, the press acted as if this mattered. She is a private citizen. Yes, she is married to the guy we hired to protect the Constitution and blah-de-blah-de-blah-de, but so what? Most of the press are married to or siblings of or children of some official or another in Washington. Do they report on what they wear and how out-of-touch it means they are? They demonstrate it, they show it, but they never have to actually tell us. Again, although they are trying to tear down the President and everyone associated with him, this is elevating the couple up to imperial status. As a citizen of the United States, my footwear is just as important as Mrs. Trump’s, yet the press has never reported on the subject. I’ll have you know my shoes are much more interesting. They have character. And the right one is developing a hole in the sole.

Members of Congress, still the opposite of progress, are talking about a disaster relief funding bill. The press says there is a great controversy because Senator Cruz opposed the Sandy disaster relief bill, but now that his state is hit, it’s important to get funding. Therefore, they tell us, Cruz is a hypocrite. But the senator says that the Sandy bill was filled with ridiculous amounts of pork, and that was why he voted against it. He says he wants a clean bill with no pork for Hurricane Harvey disaster relief.

But why are we talking about federal disaster relief? I can’t find that as one of the enumerated powers within the Constitution. Seriously, it’s not in there. Look for yourself. That should be taken care of by the people, or if necessary the local government, or if and only if necessary, the state. So, how come we have FEMA and federal disaster relief? Well, it’s because our Federal Government has expanded in the fashion of an imperial bureaucracy. In systems terms, we call it “shifting the burden to the intervener.” It’s like having that guy constantly watching over your shoulder and telling you, “No, you’re not doing it right. This is what you ought to be doing.” After awhile, you shout, “Fine, if you’re so smart, you do it!” And so he does. Not as well as you were doing it, of course. But now he’s in charge and can do it however he wants to do it, even if it’s the wrong way. Federal disaster relief shows that the Federal Government is taxing you too much to do things it’s not supposed to be doing.

Let’s look at one more instance of what passes for news recently. Donald Trump told the North Korean dictator that his sending missiles over towards Guam would be a bad idea. President Trump used what some might call a strong formulation in what he said would happen. Guess what? These are foreign affairs and military matters. It’s covered by the Constitution. What President Trump says on this matters. It’s consequential. It’s like what your maid says about vacuuming. Guess what else? Despite the number of members of the press who set their hair on fire about how President Trump worded his warning, the President was right. Kim backed down. Sure, he later tossed a missile over Japan, but he hasn’t shot one near Guam as he had said he would. Maybe President Trump understands the psychology of Kim better than members of the press do. Thank goodness we didn’t elect Jim Acosta to anything…other than chief Presidential sycophant from CNN.

Being much more serious than the earlier tone of this article, if we wish the republic to continue and not fall into monarchy, we need to be vigilant in how we treat our elected servants. We need to insist that our members of the press also be vigilant in how they treat the servants. We do not need a sycophantic press building up an imperial presidency. George III exercised far less power than every president of the last eighty years has exercised over our lives. George III also exercised far less attention in the lives of his people than our modern presidents do. Please be careful as you are watching the news. For those in the admirable position of reporting the news, please use good judgment and do not contribute to the fall of the republic.

Finally, if by some chance this gets before the eyes of President Trump, Mr. President, you are wonderful at pushing back against the press. When they ask questions that are outside the bounds of your Constitutional authority, please push back and tell them your opinion on that issue is no more important than their opinion or the maid’s opinion.

Thank you.

Published in General
This post was promoted to the Main Feed by a Ricochet Editor at the recommendation of Ricochet members. Like this post? Want to comment? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Join Ricochet for Free.

There are 47 comments.

Become a member to join the conversation. Or sign in if you're already a member.
  1. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    Arahant: Don’t look at me that way.

    Ought to be used to it by now.

    • #1
  2. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    I believe darn near nothing that I see in the media, not unless there is evidence or a source who will put his name to his nonsense. I’ve had people who have been saying “fake Russian news” for months quoting a Russian TV show where someone said “we interfered in the US elections” as proof that the Russians interfered in our elections. Which isn’t news anyway, since they’ve been doing that since 1917.

    On my spreadsheet of things to worry about, Melania’s footwear choices are nowhere present. Either report some real news or be like Jim Acosta and stand in the middle of the room shrieking “look at me! look at me!” like an improperly socialized four-year-old.

    This is embarrassing.

    • #2
  3. Judge Mental Member
    Judge Mental
    @JudgeMental

    What’s so sweet about Harry’s acre?

    • #3
  4. Judge Mental Member
    Judge Mental
    @JudgeMental

    I don’t know if even Trump can push back on this one.  If he does, he’ll get crucified for every comment he’s made that he shouldn’t have made, based on this standard.  To be able to do it, you would have to start from the first day of the candidacy.

    • #4
  5. Kevin Schulte Member
    Kevin Schulte
    @KevinSchulte

    Very reasoned and factual essay. To bad we live in an insane world where lies are the order of the day. Sqaure peg, round hole. Good thing we got a big hammer.

    Go Trump ?

    • #5
  6. I Walton Member
    I Walton
    @IWalton

    Exactly and we do share the blame we want our President to fix things but  it’s not monarchy it’s mobocracy.  Is there a word for that?

    • #6
  7. Stina Member
    Stina
    @CM

    I Walton (View Comment):
    Exactly and we do share the blame we want our President to fix things but it’s not monarchy it’s mobocracy. Is there a word for that?

    Idiocracy?

    • #7
  8. Hang On Member
    Hang On
    @HangOn

    Do the laws of thermodynamics work in politics?

    If so: Is answering such questions increasing or decreasing the entropy of the system?

    It’s actually a trick question because not answering such questions will definitely increase the entropy of the system. Answering such questions can either a) decrease the entropy, b) increase the entropy but less than not answering or c) increase the entropy more than not answering. With Trump, you are guaranteed c). But Trump is incapable of not answering. So after a while you realize it will always be c) and you quit paying attention because there is real life rather than reality tv.

    • #8
  9. Jules PA Inactive
    Jules PA
    @JulesPA

    Arahant:

    X federal programs shows that the Federal Government is taxing you too much to do things it’s not supposed to be doing.

     

    • #9
  10. Matt White Member
    Matt White
    @

    We might even be in the same county. I’ll shout when I want to shout.

    • #10
  11. Aaron Miller Member
    Aaron Miller
    @AaronMiller

    Nice try! We know you’re just an advertiser for sorely neglected telenovelas. Unless your show has Jerry Springer as El Presidente, DC politics is the best soap opera on today.

    If only it was a bit more like Game of Thrones so more actors disappear.

    • #11
  12. Trink Coolidge
    Trink
    @Trink

    Arahant: Don’t look at me that way.

    I promise, my eyes were widening merely from the insight borne of your take on these matters.

    • #12
  13. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    If you create a government strong and rich enough to whip enemies in wartime, you’ve also created a government strong enough and rich enough to provide disaster relief, which will be expected of it whether or not it’s in the government’s list of duties, unless there is some other institution that’s richer and stronger. That’s just how humans work and how limitations on governments are corrupted.

    • #13
  14. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Judge Mental (View Comment):
    What’s so sweet about Harry’s acre?

    That’s the edited to be polite version.

    • #14
  15. Judge Mental Member
    Judge Mental
    @JudgeMental

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Judge Mental (View Comment):
    What’s so sweet about Harry’s acre?

    That’s the edited to be polite version.

    I tend to miss those, as I’m not polite enough to know them.

    • #15
  16. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    The Reticulator (View Comment):
    If you create a government strong and rich enough to whip enemies in wartime, you’ve also created a government strong enough and rich enough to provide disaster relief, which will be expected of it whether or not it’s in the government’s list of duties, unless there is some other institution that’s richer and stronger. That’s just how humans work and how limitations on governments are corrupted.

    Yep. When the country started, it was the people or the states. How were the poor taken care of? County poor farms? That wasn’t good enough. Didn’t have enough dignity. Didn’t have enough capacity. So, now there is federal welfare, EBT cards, WIC, etc. Has the Constitution been changed to allow it? Of course not. It was just that “Something has to be done!” Legality? Who cares about that? Certainly not nine fools in black nightgowns. So, slowly everything becomes a federal matter.

    “Honey, we’re low on toilet paper.”

    *Knock, knock at the door*

    “Uh, who is it?”

    “Federal toilet paper service, sir.”

    • #16
  17. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Matt White (View Comment):
    We might even be in the same county. I’ll shout when I want to shout.

    This county is 907 square miles. You’re going to hurt yourself.

    • #17
  18. Stina Member
    Stina
    @CM

    Arahant (View Comment):
    “Honey, we’re low on toilet paper.”

    *Knock, knock at the door*

    “Uh, who is it?”

    “Federal toilet paper service, sir.”

    This problem would be solved with more kids. And just as efficient.

    • #18
  19. Matt Balzer Member
    Matt Balzer
    @MattBalzer

    Arahant: Thank goodness we didn’t elect Jim Acosta to anything…other than chief Presidential sycophant from CNN

    I didn’t vote for him.

    • #19
  20. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    I Walton (View Comment):
    Exactly and we do share the blame we want our President to fix things but it’s not monarchy it’s mobocracy. Is there a word for that?

    There’s a word for everything. My own opinion is the proper word is “democracy.” Some will argue that kakistocracy is closer to the reality. Mobocracy has been used. The real Greek term is ochlocracy. Pollarchy is government by the multitude, and could be used.

    Here is a list for future reference.

    • #20
  21. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Hang On (View Comment):
    So after a while you realize it will always be c) and you quit paying attention because there is real life rather than reality tv.

    Yep.

    • #21
  22. Matt Balzer Member
    Matt Balzer
    @MattBalzer

    Arahant: Mrs. Trump was seen boarding an aircraft wearing stiletto heels on her way to the flood zone in Texas. Again, the press acted as if this mattered

    In fairness I’d say it should matter to the fashion press, where at least I wouldn’t have to read about it. On the other hand I’ve seen some of the fashion press and I don’t think they’re all that fashionable either.

    • #22
  23. Brian Wolf Coolidge
    Brian Wolf
    @BrianWolf

    Bravo!  Truly fine piece of writing, gets right at the heart of the issue with a dose of humor and bucket load of truth.  Thank you, sir.

    • #23
  24. Jim Chase Member
    Jim Chase
    @JimChase

    Arahant: So, why are so many of you free and sovereign citizens acting as if you were subjects of a monarch?

    To coin an age-old Ricochet battle-cry:  Main Feed!

    The American Experiment requires the constant reinforcement of this idea of a sovereign citizenry, but of course the evidence is clear that the trend is back to that ancient demand of the people: “We want a king.”  And most don’t even realize the terrible bargain this represents.  Those in power already treat the people as subjects.  Some rise up against that notion in indignation, but in turn put others in office who continue the pattern.  It is no longer just “We want a king.”  It’s “my guy is better than your guy, we want our guy to be king.”

    It is a disturbing trend.

    • #24
  25. Aaron Miller Member
    Aaron Miller
    @AaronMiller

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Judge Mental (View Comment):
    What’s so sweet about Harry’s acre?

    That’s the edited to be polite version.

    The wine tastes like Derriere.

    • #25
  26. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Jim Chase (View Comment):
    The American Experiment requires the constant reinforcement of this idea of a sovereign citizenry, but of course the evidence is clear that the trend is back to that ancient demand of the people: “We want a king.” And most don’t even realize the terrible bargain this represents. Those in power already treat the people as subjects. Some rise up against that notion in indignation, but in turn put others in office who continue the pattern. It is no longer just “We want a king.” It’s “my guy is better than your guy, we want our guy to be king.”

    It is a disturbing trend.

    Glad I’m not the only one who sees it.

    • #26
  27. Boss Mongo Member
    Boss Mongo
    @BossMongo

    Outstanding.  Thanks, ‘Hant.

    • #27
  28. ToryWarWriter Thatcher
    ToryWarWriter
    @ToryWarWriter

    But I am a subject of a Monarch.

    • #28
  29. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    ToryWarWriter (View Comment):
    But I am a subject of a Monarch.

    Yes, you and a few others. But most are in and citizens of the United States of America. You also misspell words like honor and color, but we’ll keep you around anyway.

    • #29
  30. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

     

    Arahant: Being much more serious than the earlier tone of this article, if we wish the republic to continue and not fall into monarchy, we need to be vigilant in how we treat our elected servants. We need to insist that our members of the press also be vigilant in how they treat the servants. We do not need a sycophantic press building up an imperial presidency

    So how do we go about doing this, Arahant? I agree with your description, and I’m all for being responsible, but I feel as if I’m banging my fists against a brick wall. The press doesn’t care what people think. They are too busy frothing at the mouth and acting outraged and screaming at the president–and as you say, giving him power that doesn’t belong to him.

    • #30
Become a member to join the conversation. Or sign in if you're already a member.