Tuesday January 20th, 2009 was a day of historic proportions. Why? Because for the 44th time in our nation’s history we had a peaceful transfer of leadership. There were no riots, no assassination attempts, no military coup, and other than some rude behavior to our former president there was relatively little trouble at all the entire day. We should all stop and be thankful that we have such days. But Tuesday is over, and the time for action has begun. You see it’s our job to hold our elected leaders accountable for what they say and do, and now that President Obama is doing things I feel compelled to hold him accountable for them.
Inauguration speeches tend to be somewhat vague. Generally they are a venue where new presidents attempt to bring the country together by saying a bunch of things on which everyone agrees. President Obama’s speech was no different and he hadn’t even completed two paragraphs and I was already agreeing with him. He said quite simply that,
“every so often the oath is taken amidst gathering clouds and raging storms. At these moments, America has carried on […] because We the People have remained faithful to the ideals of our forbearers, and true to our founding documents.”
If I was at the inauguration I would have cheered loudly at that line because he was right, in times of crisis the American people have stood up and done the right thing for ourselves and the World because that is who we are, that’s what makes us Americans because that’s the example that was given to us by those who created this country and those founding documents are the ones that gave us the ability to do it. The problem is that what our President is saying out of one side of his mouth is completely contradicted by his actions and his planned actions for the next four(eight) years. I don’t need to look deep into his speeches, his past policy decisions, or his updates to whitehouse.gov I can simply look no further than his inaugural address to show you how President Obama will fail to “remain faithful to the ideals of our forbearers, and true to our founding documents.”
To do that we must look at what he said. If you haven’t heard go listen . I personally found it somewhat boring and found it to be a somewhat better read. If you wish to do neither of those things I’ll give you some highlight of some of the things he said this country [read that: this government] needs to do. For you see when the President is making promises he is making promises for the Federal Government and you must realize that first and foremost before you start thinking about what the Constitution says can and cannot be done.
The President said, “For everywhere we look, there is work to be done. The state of our economy calls for action, bold and swift action […] to lay a new foundation for growth.”Allow me to list some of the things that President Obama said in his speech:
- “We will build the roads and bridges, the electric grids and digital lines.”
- “We will […] wield technology’s wonders to raise health care’s quality and lower its cost.”
- “We will harness the sun and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories.”
- “We will transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age.”
- “We will work tirelessly to […] roll back the specter of a warming planet.”
President Obama went on to say that, “the question we ask today is not whether our government is too big or too small, but whether it works–whether it helps families find jobs at a decent wage, care they can afford, a retirement that is dignified.” The problem Mr. President is that isn’t the question that you should have been asking. The question you should be asking is whether or not government has the right to do what you suggest it must do. Did the founders give the federal government the right to accomplish your list of “we wills.” The list may sound nice, and if you go to whitehouse.gov you’ll find an even longer list that might sound even nicer, there is but one problem and it is that pesky little 10th Amendment.
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.
The problem is the Constitution gives no power to the Federal Government for any of those things listed nor does it give the Federal Government the power to do a slew of the things he’s suggesting. The purpose of the government is not to supply all the needs of the people nor is it to make the country a better place to live in, nor is it to make wonderful schools or fantastically transform the environment. The purpose of our government is to provide the country in which we can do these things for ourselves. We were endowed by our creator with rights which are self-evident and they include the “pursuit of happiness.” The constitution allows for this pursuit by suggesting that the government can “promote” the “general welfare” not by provide for every need of a lazy populace. Sure some of these things are good and need doing but it’s not suppose to be up to the federal government or President Obama, it is suppose to be up to the states because the infrastructure needs in Montana are different than those in New York City. Our government has lost it’s way on both sides of the isle and it’s time we all wake up and notice before we stop using the Constitution altogether.