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Process or Dictatorship? Time to Choose!

This week, the President of the United States, in a televised interview, stated that the American people were more concerned about outcome than process.  He said that the Washington crowd may be concerned with the details about how a bill becomes law, but that the average citizen just wants something done, and will not fuss about how it gets done. 

So, process isn’t important?

It is news to me; a kick in the solar plexus.

It would have been shocking news to James Madison, Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton and John Jay.  For them, it was ALL about process. 

It amounts to a total repudiation of democratic principles.

It insults every patriot and freedom fighter who fought for our independence. 

It is not true.  It cannot be true. 

If it is true, we no longer have freedom.

This free nation was founded on the very principle of process.

Is President Obama really dismissive of process?  He shouldn’t be.  He was elected by a process.  Alexander Hamilton wrote in Federalist Paper No. 68:  “The process of election affords a moral certainty, that the office of President will never fall to the lot of any man who is not in an eminent degree endowed with the requisite qualifications.”  Also, the U. S. Constitution outlines the process by which a bill becomes law.  Every Bill which shall have passed the House of Representatives and the Senate, shall, before it become a Law, be presented to the President of the United States;[2] If he approve he shall sign it, but if not he shall return it, with his Objections to that House in which it shall have originated, who shall enter the Objections at large on their Journal, and proceed to reconsider it.” 

Nearly every article written about the legislative process contains the word process.   From the U. S. Constitution Online, we read:  The process laid out in the Constitution is relatively complicated when it comes to vetoes, but pretty simple when it comes to approving a bill. But in reality, there is a lot more to law making than these steps spelled out in a clause of the Constitution.” 

In matters of law, no right-thinking person would deny something we call due process.  It guarantees many rights we consider basic to citizenship, including  1) the Right to a fair and public trial conducted in a competent manner 2) the Right to be present at the trial 3) the Right to an impartial jury 4) the Right to be heard in one’s own defense 5) that Laws must be written so that a reasonable person can understand what is criminal behavior 6) that Taxes may only be taken for public purposes 7) that Property may be taken by the government only for public purposes and 8) that Owners of taken property must be fairly compensated.  

Never, ever disparage process.

Rights are protected and preserved in the messy business of process.

Process is central to the way we are governed.

Process is the guarantee of true democracy.

Process is the basic and fundamental way of American life.

Process keeps tyrants from taking over the country.

Process provides for the participation of every authorized individual.

Process insures transparency at every critical juncture of legislative development.

Process incorporates all the rules established to govern us as a nation.

Process allows minorities to express themselves in a meaningful way.

Process militates against discrimination and partisanship.

Process stops heavy-handed manipulators from having access to government.

Process forces patience and deliberation.

Process makes uniformity necessary.


Without guaranteed process, we have oligarchy (rule by the few).

Without guaranteed process, we have aristocracy (rule by the elite).

Without guaranteed process, we have royalty.

Without guaranteed process, we have dictatorship.

Without guaranteed process, we have fiat.  What is fiat?  A command or act of will that creates something without further effort (or without process); an authoritative determination; an authoritative or arbitrary order or decree. 

Some think that fiat is good, as long as the person or persons that use it are good.  My question is, says who?  Are the pro-choice people “good” enough to execute fiats?  Are the amnesty people “good” enough to rule by fiat?  Are the people who loathe the military “good” enough to issue fiats?  How about the euthanasia people?  The gay marriage people?  The tax-and-spend people?  The radical environmentalists?  The socialists?  Communists?  Terrorists?  If you eliminate process, people like the above mentioned—or worse—will replace it. 

I am not afraid of process.

If following legal process I fail to get the outcome I want, so be it.

The outcome must always be subordinate to the process.

The process is everything.

The process is king.

We haven’t had a King since George III in 1776.

We don’t need one now.

Dismissing, bypassing or destroying process is treasonous.

It fomented a revolution at one time in our history.

It stirred men to devote their lives, their fortunes, their sacred honor to establish it.

People shed blood and lost lives over it at one time in our history.

Denial of process tore this nation up two-hundred thirty years ago.

What will it do today?

Those sentiments still run deep in our culture.

We should be careful.

I’m just saying…

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Reader Comments (1)

The U.S. Senate has decidedly undemocratic rules, allowing a single senator to literally stop progress, indeed, even *debate*, on a particular bill. There are "anonymous holds" and threats of filibuster, among other arcane, undemocratic practices in that body. It's these kind of things that make legislating in the U.S. Congress akin to making sausage, as they say; this is not new or unprecedented, and deals were made by Reagan and Tip O'Neil behind closed doors, too. :)

October 7, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTim Garcia

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