VIII.2: Was Judicial Review Inevitable?

Judicial review transfers constitutional decision-making power from the legislature to the courts. The legislature writes a law. Then the executive branch implements it. And finally the courts apply it to specific cases. As a result, this sequence of events alone implies that judicial review was inevitable: The speedy transfer of this reliance from the legislatures … Read more

VIII.1: The Origin of Judicial Review

“Judicial review” means that a court has the power to declare that a law involved in a case brought before it is unconstitutional. A court has the power to strike down that law if it thinks the law contradicts its interpretation of the Constitution. Such decisions can be appealed to higher courts, and ultimately to … Read more

VII.2: What Does “Federal” Mean?

The word ‘federal’ refers to the division of governing power between a nation and its sub-regions or states. It is confusing that in America it has become common to use the word “federal government” to refer to the national government alone. It would be far clearer to use the phrase “national government” for that purpose. … Read more

VI.4: The Virginia Resolution

James Madison had more influence than any other person in creating the form of the U.S. Constitution. Madison wrote the Virginia Resolution a decade after the Constitution. But both came from his understanding of tyranny. That is, to prevent it, a government must divide power between separate groups of people. If the nation is to … Read more

VI.1: The Fight over the US Constitution

The Articles of Confederation acted as a “federal constitution” for the original thirteen American states, but it had no enforcing power. The story of the fight over the US Constitution begins after the War for Independence. At that time, the state governments ignored the Articles of Confederation. In fact, they refused to cooperate on much … Read more

III.4: Corruption in American Government

Who first brought corruption into the American government? Corruption existed in Great Britain before there was an American government. Consequently, Edmund Burke, a Member of the British Parliament, wrote: There is no safety for honest men but by believing all possible evil of evil men, and by acting with promptitude, decision, and steadiness on that … Read more

I.5: Do We Live in a Jeffersonian Democracy?

Many think our government follows the principles championed by Thomas Jefferson. The phrase, “Jeffersonian democracy” is based on Thomas Jefferson’s defeat of the Federalist Party in 1800, and his tremendously democratic view of government. But I argue that, unfortunately, today we live in a society much more influenced by Jefferson’s arch-enemy, Alexander Hamilton. So we … Read more

I.2: How Can We Separate Money and Politics?

We tend to waste time, money, and energy attacking the symptoms of problems and ignore their root causes. What is the root cause of most of America’s problems? I believe it is government corruption. Moreover, I think that happens because we don’t know how to separate money and politics. The love of money is the … Read more