Previously I was discussing Eigene Weekly's Next Big Thing blog interview of Craig Rosebraugh regarding Earth Liberation Front's magazine 'Resistance.' I pointed out a couple of myths being perpetuated about the role of profits and biotechnology as they relate to environmental sustainability. In the same interview, Mr. Rosebraugh makes the following comment:
"This is a corrupt government, one that has been corrupt since its inception in 1776. The most unreasonable, potent, and damaging lie ever told to the people of the United States is that this is a democracy. The United States has never been a democracy nor will it ever be one without a significant change in the way the government is structured and the way it operates. This plutocracy or oligarchy is going to do what is in the best interest of the wealthy, of the corporations, and even to this day of the white male. Anything that stands to challenge the power the government and corporations hold over the people will be met with extreme force and violence."
Some of this really needs to be broken down line by line.
Let's start here:
"The most unreasonable, potent, and damaging lie ever told to the people of the United States is that this is a democracy. "
He is correct, but for all the wrong reasons. It seems that many people do have the misconception that we live in a democracy- but that is not what was intended. If it is a lie being told, that is being done in our schools or by activists and politicians. It certainly does not reflect the famous exchange made by Ben Franklin regarding the constitution:
Someone: “Well, Doctor, what have we got—a Republic or a Monarchy?” -
Ben Franklin: “A Republic, if you can keep it.”
A republic, not a monarchy, not a democracy. Rosebraugh is correct though, this myth about us being a democracy has been damaging, but not for the reasons he thinks. Some politicians have been so ambitious as to think that democratic popularity should override the protections our founders gave us in the Constitution- in other words congress should be able to do what ever it wants as long as it has the votes and the people keep sending them to Washington. And, if the constitution gets in the way, then it is OK for some unelected judge to make up a new interpretation granting congress the power it needs. I have a feeling that this is exactly the 'significant change in the way the government is structured and the way it operates' that Mr. Rosebraugh has in mind. We apparently just haven't went far enough in his mind and formally rescinded the Bill of Rights.
He also says that "This is a corrupt government, one that has been corrupt since its inception in 1776."
Well, of course government has always been corrupt in every form. But that is exactly why our founders gave us a Constitutional Republic. As Thomas Jefferson said:
“in questions of power then, let no more be heard of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the constitution”
By unbinding an otherwise democratic government from its constitutional restraints, as Mr. Rosebraugh may prefer, we open the door to some of the worst kinds of corruption we have seen in our history.
In a constitutional republic,(at least with our Constitution as it was written) corporations have no power other than the power we give them when we buy their products. Our Constitution as it is written expressly forbids government granting them any other power or special privileges over the common man. And, it protects us from any power held by the government. Only when we compromise (as we continue to do)for example with wild interpretations of 'the commerce clause' or the term 'general welfare' do we give up these protections.
But, these very compromises are what give the federal government the power it needs to enforce the environmental regulations these anti-ag activists treasure so much. The reforms that Mr. Rosebraugh and ELF are pushing certainly may be responsible for any truth that there may be regarding his statement:
"Anything that stands to challenge the power the government and corporations hold over the people will be met with extreme force and violence."
Only in a democracy void of constitutional restraint could we have such corruption and abuse of power. Our founders may have had their flaws, but they definitely knew what they were doing.