Monday, October 27, 2008

Negative liberties?

The clock on this election season is fast running down and the dam that has kept seriously negative information about Barack Obama is finally getting some leaks that the little Dutch boy and his friends can no longer control.

Last week's McCain/Palin 'scandal' over clothing is childish when compared to so much of Obama's story to include this morning's audio of an interview Obama had in 2001 with Chicago's Public Radios Station. No doubt he felt like he was talking to family and felt free to express his opinion in a more unguarded way. Here's a snip from that interview (emphasis mine):

But, the Supreme Court never ventured into the issues of redistribution of wealth, and of more basic issues such as political and economic justice in society. To that extent, as radical as I think people try to characterize the Warren Court, it wasn’t that radical. It didn’t break free from the essential constraints that were placed by the founding fathers in the Constitution, at least as its been interpreted and Warren Court interpreted in the same way, that generally the Constitution is a charter of negative liberties. Says what the states can’t do to you. Says what the Federal government can’t do to you, but doesn’t say what the Federal government or State government must do on your behalf, and that hasn’t shifted and one of the, I think, tragedies of the civil rights movement was, um, because the civil rights movement became so court focused I think there was a tendancy to lose track of the political and community organizing and activities on the ground that are able to put together the actual coalition of powers through which you bring about redistributive change. In some ways we still suffer from that.
More evidence that what Melanie Philips wrote about (see post below) is exactly spot on. Obama sees the Constitution as a hindrance and I and millions of other America loving patriots see it as a path to enormous freedom. Did it need a tweak or two...obviously yes. Obama fails to understand the times and tyranny the founders were trying to escape from when they created those boundaries. Without those boundaries I believe we'll face another King George. Only God knows at this point if his name will be King Obama.

Hat tip: Michelle Malkin


Rotundo said...

do you understand what it means for the constitution to be a "charter of negative liberties" ? - From your post it appears that you don't. It is not a liberal/conservative viewpoint, it is a fact. The constitution dictates no positive rights, only what the government CAN'T do, this is quite intentional from the wording chosen.

Why do you find this quote an example of Obama having a negative view of the constitution, when in fact it is a quite conservative viewpoint on the constitution, especially when viewed alongside the leftist politics of the last 50 years.

N.S. Allen said...

Okay, what, exactly, do you disagree with, in that statement? Especially if you read the entire comment, it's clear that Obama is saying that the court asserting positive rights, saying that the federal government must do something for someone, is a bad idea and not something anyone should expect anytime soon.

Do you think the courts should mandate certain actions by the the feds or the states? If not, you agree with Obama, on this point.

(And, while Obama talks about redistribution of wealth, he's talking about it in context of the civil rights movement. There's a big difference in wanting people who have been economically oppressed for as long as they've lived to get some more money and wanting to institute sweeping socialist reform.)

Right Click said...
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Right Click said...

More people should be pointing out what you've pointed out here. It is clear to me that Obama has contempt for the emphasis on negative liberties that is found within our constitution. It is very convenient for Obama that the term "negative liberties" is an accurate one. But his choice of words, taken in the entire context, is very telling. For most people, including those listening to that broadcast, the word NEGATIVE is synonymous with BAD. Obama knows this. If Obama knows anything, he knows how to choose words carefully. Although Obama is making other points, I think this information sheds more light on Obama's attitude toward our Constitution. Obama is a constitutional scholar, and if he wanted to make the Constitution and "negative liberties" sound like the best thing since chicken noodle soup he would have chosen different words. Take a look at "Negative Liberties" By Cyrus R. K. Patell. Tell me if you think HE admires the U.S. Constitution. Do Patell and Obama have similar viewpoints? Wouldn't it be nice if someone had the courage to ask Obama about this and insist on a straight answer?

N.S. Allen said...

Oh, yes, Obama is just devious when it comes to the use of language. How dastardly of him to use the phrase "negative liberties," since it is accurate, is common in constitutional law circles, is clearly defined, and can be read as pejorative by someone who doesn't know what it means! Maybe he has similar views to some of the other thousands and thousands of people who have previously used the phrase!

People like Supreme Court justice Stephen Breyer! That sneaky traitor, sending out code messages to his anti-American friends, while he sits there on the high court! A man of his intellectual stature would come up with some other, less common term, rather than use a well-recognized phrase within his field that could possibly be construed as offensive by people too lazy to look it up!

Seriously, I try to avoid sarcasm, but are you insane??