When Bob Schieffer recently asked how he would force federal judges to comply with congressional subpoenas, Gingrich said he would send the U.S. Capitol Police or U.S. Marshals to arrest the judges and force them to testify.Independent judiciary? What independent judiciary? Talk about a hack!
The sub-text of his agenda is twofold.First, the bedrock doctrine of an independent judiciary laid down in Marbury v. Madison is to be rendered a nullity.
The second is that further precedents such as Brown v. Board of Education , Loving v. Virginia and Lawrence v. Texas, would be prevented since they do not represent the will of the bigoted mob or satisfy the tyranny of the majority which is a phrase that originated with Alexis de Tocqueville in his Democracy in America, and is an entire section of the book. The notion was further popularized by John Stuart Mill, who cites de Tocqueville, in On Liberty (1859). The Federalist Papers frequently warned against the danger under the name of "the violence of majority faction," and in particular by James Madison in Federalist 10. Lord Acton also used this term in The History of Freedom in Antiquity (1877) where he wrote,
The one pervading evil of democracy is the tyranny of the majority, or rather of that party, not always the majority, that succeeds, by force or fraud, in carrying elections.The obvious consequence and hidden agenda is a repeal of the Bill of Rights the very purpose of which, as the late Justice Robert H. Jackson wrote, was
“to withdraw certain subjects from the vicissitudes of political controversy, to place them beyond the reach of majorities and officials and to establish them as legal principles to be applied by the courts. One's right to life, liberty, and property, to free speech, a free press, freedom of worship and assembly, and other fundamental rights may not be submitted to vote; they depend on the outcome of no elections."Justice Jackson’s summery of that fundamental, bedrock, legal principal is the essence of Federalism that will ultimately bring down DOMA and the infamous Proposition 8 --the principal being that neither Congress, nor state legislatures, nor the pitchfork-wielding soldiers of Kulturkampf known as voters, may abrogate a ‘fundamental’ right in violation of the U.S. Constitution.
Dismantling these bedrock legal principals is, and always has been, the not-so-hidden agenda of the sanctimonious wingnut bullies on the right. In one sense Gingrich’s demagoguery is a perfect example of the point Christopher Hitchens made in his marvelous 1998 essay, "Goodbye to All That: Why Americans Are Not Taught History." The self-anointed “historian” Gingrich would, like Our Ford in Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World, wave his hand as though with an invisible feather whisk and just brush away a little Constitutional dust, and that dust is the Bill of Rights and an independent judiciary that gave us in Marbury v. Madison, Brown v. Board of Education, Loving v. Virginia and, Lawrence v. Texas. Whisk. Whisk. Whisk. Hack. Hack. Hack.That any politician could even suggest such consequence is clear and convincing evidence that either he is a delusional megalomaniac and demagogue or that he could not possibly think he has a chance at being president but cynically marches to the dead beat of a demented drummer for purely egoistical purpose and, of course, for cynical profit as hack in author’s drag.
If the majority of voters took him seriously he’d be the most dangerous man in America for, in his own words, Gingrich is so a “radically anti-American that [it is he who is] a threat to the fabric of the country.” But unless demented by delusions of grandiosity (a distinct possibility) even he could not believe his own balderdash and claptrap has a chance of putting him in the White House.Does Gingrich really think his fellow Americans are gullible dumb sheep ready to line up and again be fleeced and sodomized by their shepherds and that he can sell us his underwater ocean-front property in Arizona? If so then he may belong in an institution but it’s clearly not the White House.
Francois ArouetCopyright © 2011 Francois Arouet