March 31, 2005

What He Said

The editor of our local diocesan newspaper writes:
It is amazing how a president, a governor and legislatures act impotent when facing the judiciary. What is happening in our country would be to our Founding Fathers both surprising and expected.

In the Federalist Papers No. 78, Alexander Hamilton wrote:
“… In a government in which they are separated from each other, the judiciary, from the nature of its functions, will always be the least dangerous to the political rights of the Constitution; because it will be least in a capacity to annoy or injure them. The executive not only dispenses the honors but holds the sword of the community. The legislature not only commands the purse but prescribes the rules by which the duties and rights of every citizen are to be regulated. The judiciary, on the contrary, has no influence over either the sword or the purse…and can take no active resolution whatever. It may truly be said to have neither FORCE nor WILL but merely judgment; and must ultimately depend upon the aid of the executive arm even for the efficacy of its judgments.

“This simple view…proves incontestably that the judiciary is beyond comparison the weakest of the three departments of power….”
In the Anti-Federalists Papers, “Brutus” notes in essay XI:
“Every body of men invested with office are tenacious of power; they feel interested, and hence it has become a kind of maxim, to hand down their offices, with all its rights and privileges, unimpaired to their successors; the same principle will influence them to extend their power…this of itself will operate strongly upon the courts to give such a meaning to the constitution in all cases where it can possibly be done, as will enlarge the sphere of their own authority….

“When the courts will have a precedent before them of a court which extended its jurisdiction in opposition to an act of the legislature, is it not to be expected that they will extend theirs….

“This power in the judicial, will enable them to mould the government, into almost any shape they please.”
It seems as much as Hamilton meant well, it was “Brutus” who saw more clearly in what direction the courts would go.

Ultimately, though, we have failed. Inasmuch as the powers of government are derived from the people, we let Terri starve, just as we let 4,000 abortions occur daily, more than 40 million since the Supreme Court declared abortion on demand in Roe and Doe a right. Will we ever have the courage, fortitude and derring-do to stand and say: “No more”? May God have mercy on us. —Mark Moretti, editor

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