Joe Biden and his “Office of The President-Elect” just offered members of the American left their opportunity to decry what, during Trump’s era, they claimed they opposed: the “dictatorial” presidency.
As reported by The Hill’s Tal Axelrod, the Biden Super-Friends Team says that, shortly after his coronation Wednesday, His Highness will issue a dozen super-cool Executive Orders:
Ron Klain, Biden’s incoming White House chief of staff, wrote in a memo released Saturday that the orders will focus on the quartet of ‘the COVID-19 crisis, the resulting economic crisis, the climate crisis, and a racial equity crisis.’
Which comes as no surprise to those who recall that both Hillary Clinton and her former campaign manager and former Obama White House Chief of Staff, Rahm Emanuel, advised other collectivist politicians to “never waste a good crisis.”
Keen advice for megalomaniacs, especially when those crises can be manufactured by politicians and promoted by a sycophantic pop media.
Especially when the vast majority of Americans seem blissfully unaware of the economic danger and anti-constitutional perversion represented by any president who claims he can do so much through executive order, and when they also seem unaware that D.C. is not supposed to touch such issues in any way whatsoever.
More fundamentally, even if it were a “crisis,” there is nothing in the so-called “rules” of the U.S. Constitution allowing any branch of the U.S. government to do anything about a naturally occurring danger. Not a forest fire, not a flood, and not a virus. If the fire, or flood, or virus, is found to have been created by a foreign nation-state, it’s up to the Congress to cite that foreign regime and declare war, and only then could one argue that the feds constitutionally could fight the fire, or flood, or fund a “vaccine” as a defense. And, it should be stressed, such “defense tactics” would have to be stripped of pork bailouts and crazy “bans on evictions” and other nonsense the feds shower in acid rain on us through their deficit-spending, faux-beneficence.
And Biden’s siren song about the virus won’t stop on Wednesday, writes Alexrod:
Biden also will issue a mask mandate on federal property and interstate travel and extend a pause on evictions and foreclosures.
So much for that lack of any constitutional or moral power to tell landlords and renters how to handle their voluntary agreements. Biden seems quite ready to breach the bounds of the Constitution he will swear – once more – to “protect and defend.” With the same zeal he showed in shutting down an investigation of Burisma, Joe appears desirous of making certain that American landowners will either be at risk of ceding their property to multinational banks, or they will ask for unconstitutional federal bailouts to prevent such foreclosures.
He also appears eager to avoid the fact that, just because things or people go over state borders, it does not mean the feds can control those things or people. As I have noted before, this claim of federal power is based on a misreading of the Interstate Commerce Clause of the Constitution (Art I, Sec 8), which, as James Madison said after taking notes at the Constitutional Convention, was written to allow for remedies of State-versus-State trade disputes, not to allow venal federal politicians to control interstate travel or trade. Madison likely would be shocked to see how this clause has been misread and misused since the dawning of the constitutionally dubious Sherman Antitrust Act of 1890. Likewise, Madison would have risen in furious opposition to the idea that the feds could fund an expensive, glad-handling, pork-barrel “interstate highway” systemunder the guise of “national defense” when the Constitution envisioned no standing army. All one need do is consider the absurdity of an “interstate” highway in Hawaii to realize how far off the rails the feds have gone in the last two-hundred-plus years.
But wait, there’s more! As Axelrod notes:
Biden will follow up on Thursday with executive actions to ‘move aggressively to change the course of the COVID-19 crisis and safely re-open schools and businesses, including by taking action to mitigate spread through expanding testing, protecting workers, and establishing clear public health standards.’
None of which is a constitutional purview of the feds, or even envisioned by the Lockean theory of so-called “justified” government in the first place.
According to the Founders’ vision, a polis is only justified if created to protect life, liberty, or property from encroachments by other people. It mostly stems from John Locke’s 17thCentury Second Treatise of Government, and even this theory overlooks a great many moral arguments against the state itself. But, at least on the traditional, constitutional level, it’s utterly obvious that the work of “safely re-opening schools” or of running schools at all, and of “re-opening businesses” (does he mean businesses that have been forced closed by political diktats contrary to most of the Bill of rights – those businesses?), and of “taking action to mitigate spread through expanding testing, protecting workers, and establishing clear public health standards,” have nothing to do with anything in the U.S. Constitution.
Like Biden’s feverish devotion to “anthropogenic climate change crisis” rhetoric when that issue is not a crisis and pushers of it have been shown time and again to be using faulty data (and appear to have communicated with one another about how to manipulate that data), ol’ Joe’s push on all these “crises” has very little to do with facts or the Constitution and much more to do with expanding federal power and handing out cash.
It’s unlikely his orders will be opposed by many Democrats or RINOS in D.C., and very likely that the orders will be praised by the likes of talkers on CNN, MSNBC, ABC, CBS, PBS, and NBC. Old Guard leftist newspapers like the Washington Post and New York Times likely will ritualistically chant about Biden using “his” Executive Power for good, never noting that, as J.R.R. Tolkien tried to warn people, the ring of power is unjust, immoral, and corrosive, regardless of who wears it.
The original idea of Executive Orders was simple. Within the early Executive Branch, if a President needed to handle some small matter such as moving an office he could issue an Executive Order.
But now, there are so many federal statutes, so many federal programs, so many federal offices under Executive control, the President’s Executive Orders can touch on almost any minute facet of American life, regardless of whether it’s constitutional or even ethical to do so.
Since Donald Trump got into office, so-called “anti-authoritarians” decried his use of Executive Orders, but not the concept of such Executive omnipotence. Instead, they wore the cloak of “anti-authoritarianism,” when, really, they just wanted their brand of authoritarian in charge.
Something to remember, as the worship of the new King begins.
(Cover Photo: Gage Skidmore)