The Imperial Presidency
Substituting Rule of Law with Rule of Men
“Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it.” –Declaration of Independence (1776)
This being the week designated to celebrate American Liberty, I paused to read the Declaration of Independence, as I do every anniversary of its signing. In that venerable old parchment, our Founders reduced to words the eternal source of Liberty as “endowed by our Creator,” and then outlined their grievances against an imperial executive who willfully violated that endowment “which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitled them.”
The Unanimous Declaration was, in the words of Thomas Jefferson, its principal author, “the declaratory charter of our rights, and the rights of man.”
It opens by defining those rights, framing the relationship between the Creator and His people, the people and the government, and then listing how the executive had violated their God-given rights, “all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States.”
Among those “injuries and usurpations” committed by the executive, they noted:
“He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good. … He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them. … He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers. … He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance. … He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation.”
The comparison between the imperial powers which gave rise to the American Revolution and the imperial presidency which now threatens the Essential Liberty our Founders fought for, and generations of American Patriots have since defended, is unavoidable.
Barack Hussein Obama recently lamented, “It turns out our Founders designed a system that makes it more difficult to bring about change than I would like sometimes.” However, he added, “One of the things about being President is you get better as time goes on.” Indeed, he has become quite better at forging ahead with his agenda to supplant Rule of Law with rule of men, in flagrant disregard of his Oath of Office.
The evidence of Obama’s self-anointed imperial status is mounting.
He created swarms of “czars” unaccountable to Congress. He circumvented Congress by using the Environmental Protection Agency to implement his cap-and-trade scheme. He used the National Labor Relations Board to circumvent the Employee Free Choice Act. He used the Federal Communications Commission to circumvent the judiciary’s proscription on regulating the Internet. He used the Department of Education to force national education standards.
In other cases, Obama has simply ignored the law completely.
He ordered the Department of Justice to cease enforcement of the Defense of Marriage Act. He ordered the Department of Health and Human Services to force private religious institutions to fund abortions and other measures contrary to their Biblical moral code. He ordered the Department of Homeland Security’s immigration service to use “prosecutorial discretion” in order to stop the mandated deportation of illegal immigrants.
Regarding the latter, even former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales responded, “To halt through the deportation of some undocumented immigrants looks like a political calculation to win Hispanic votes, and subjects him to criticism that he is violating his oath of office by selectively failing to enforce the law.”
Most recently, Obama claimed “executive privilege” to avoid further investigation into “Fast and Furious,” a scheme designed to promote the administration’s efforts to undermine “the palladium of all rights,” our Second Amendment.
Of course, Obama’s imperial ascension is fully in keeping with his narcissistic pathology, and he’s made plain that he doesn’t intend to be constrained by the law.
Soon after his election, his former Chief of Staff, Rahm Emanuel, proclaimed that Obama would use “executive orders and directives to get the job done across a front of issues.” And Obama himself boldly decreed earlier this year, “Whenever Congress refuses to act, Joe [Biden] and I, we’re going to act. In the months to come, wherever we have an opportunity, we’re going to take steps on our own [to implement my agenda].”
In the Declaration of Independence, our Founders' long list of objections to government assault on Liberty closes by condemning the executive “for altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments” and “exciting domestic insurrections amongst us,” and notes, “A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.”
Today, Obama’s pledge of “fundamentally transforming the United States of America” is brought about by attacking the free enterprise system, by altering our form of government in favor of Democratic Socialism, by pitting one group of Americans against another, and by justifying a domestic insurrection called “Occupy Wall Street.”
The Declaration concludes, “And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.”
Fellow Patriots, whether by ballot or bullet box, we must pledge no less to preserve Liberty.
Pro Deo et Constitutione – Libertas aut Mors
Semper Vigilo, Fortis, Paratus et Fidelis