The Cult of the Presidency-How We Got a Superstar President

@debrakcarey (19925)
United States
May 8, 2011 9:04pm CST
http://reason.com/archives/2008/05/12/the-cult-of-the-presidency/2 Who can we blame for the radical expansion of executive power? Look no further than you and me. Throughout the 20th century more and more Americans looked to the central government to deal with highly visible public problems, from labor disputes to crime waves to natural disasters. And as responsibility flowed to the center, power accrued with it. If that trend continues, responses to matters of great public concern will be increasingly federal, increasingly executive, and increasingly military. http://reason.com/archives/2007/09/12/rant-learning-to-love-the-impe I took an oath, and I take that oath to the president very seriously,” former White House aide Sara Taylor told the Senate Judiciary Committee during the summer hearings on the U.S. attorneys purge. Taylor’s statement prompted an indignant clarification from Sen. Patrick Leahy (D–Vt.): “No, the oath says that you take an oath to uphold and protect the Constitution of the United States!” HOW DID IT HAPPEN THAT A THIRTY-TWO YEAR OLD WOMAN DOES NOT KNOW THAT HER OATH IS TO THE CONSTITUTION AND NOT THE PRESIDENT? Americans are responsible for the Constitutional mess we're in. It isn't Republican vs. Democrat or conservative vs. liberal; its We the People against OURSELVES. We asked for this and now we have to do some serious introspection and find it within ourselves to be responsibile and accountable. No more asking the President to be more than he can according to our founding documents. No more expecting the federal government to solve all the problems. We need education to stand up and educate our children on what it means to be responsible and accountable as well. If that means paying attention, caring about what they're exposed to etc. Then we must do it. Do we have what it takes? Do we even know what it takes? Can we return to limited federal government?
2 people like this
4 responses
@dragon54u (31184)
• United States
9 May 11
What you are proposing is a massive education effort to erase more than 50 years of indoctrination. Since the New Deal our politicians have diligently worked to stamp out personal pride in independence. And now our children are being brainwashed to expect the government to support them. On top of it all, most of the people receiving entitlements of some kind (at last count, about 57% of the population) think of the government as a nanny with its own income. They don't realize that it is money grabbed forcibly from workers and those that do usually don't care. They've been indoctrinated into the culture of entitlements and don't care where it comes from as long as they get what they think they deserve. So if we're going to reduce government to sane proportions, we have a big job ahead of us. I'm educated my children and everyone else would do the same we might see some change in a decade or so. But we absolutely must make people realize what government is--the people, not a nanny--and the heights we could reach if it were smaller and less intrusive.
1 person likes this
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
9 May 11
Yes, I realize what I am proposing. And like you say it would be a big job IF everyone wanted to cooperate. Which I do not see happening. There is a small fraction of Americans willing to try. But truthfully, I do not see it happening peacefully. Here is a reason why: http://paulrevereradio.ning.com/profiles/blog/show?id=6327028%3ABlogPost%3A64029&xgs=1&xg_source=msg_share_post Because there is also a portion of our fellow Americans who will fight (literally) to keep their entitlements.
1 person likes this
@matersfish (6311)
• United States
9 May 11
It seems to me that, by and large, people need some sort of divinity in their lives, a purpose to serve. For many folks, that gets warped into viewing political figures as deities. This isn't some wild and crazy theory that little ol' matersfish has and that nobody else is thinking or something that no one else is aware of. This is something that's painfully obvious when looking at world history. Emperors and kings and queens and dictators have been held in power throughout human history simply because too many people elevated them to that position. Ironfisted rule cannot keep you in power amongst your own people if your own people don't want you in. So that's definitely not an excuse. And even leaders overseeing political systems that have killed millions upon millions are still held in high esteem if the deaths can somehow by spun into righteous for "equality" or "justice." It's sick. Some of the most headstrong, outspoken, vibrant and passionate people I've ever met in my life have been, ironically enough, proponents of big, all-controlling government. That's a clash if ever there was one. It doesn't make much sense. But then to look at it, well, it kinda does. Their ideas and hopes and dreams and values aren't necessarily "their" ideas and hopes and dreams and values. They're secondhand desires, in a lot of cases, picked up through, for lack of a more appropriate term at 12:16am, idol worship. Sitting here typing, I just suddenly started laughing to remember the other week when a (surprisingly!) 10-star-rated, seemingly respected poster on myLot literally called me extreme and foolish for simply stating that people should rule over themselves and that government should not be in charge of lives. The idea that someone needs to be in control, that some power needs to be higher, is an idea we're simply not ready to evolve out of yet. When I hear and read the more "liberal" way of seeing the world, I always cringe when they claim "their" ways are fairer and more evolved than others. The way I see it, they're actually going in reverse. Wanting government to be in charge of people's lives and to be in charge of what's "fair" and what's "right" is the deevolution of humanity. Why do grown, intelligent, driven people want or need someone else to be in charge? America is the ideal that, at least on its face, broke away from the idea that some ruling body needs to control lives. I'm just confused to see so many people continuing to want government to do things for them. Education is certainly paramount in convincing people that big government never ends well for anyone. But for many people in America, they have no choice but to attend or send their childen to schools big government already controls. And we all know what goes on in those schools: you're taught big government is the key to all world happiness and that mmm mmm mmm Obama songs are right catchy tunes.
1 person likes this
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
9 May 11
Very interesting matersfish. Very interesting indeed. As you know, I am a believer in God. Perhaps this is why conservative Christians are so against big government? Now I realize this doesn't ALWAYS hold true. But perhaps some Christians do not worship the 'idol' because they are content with God being in charge of their lives? You may have hit on something here. http://articles.cnn.com/2007-04-04/health/neurotheology_1_scans-frontal-lobe-sensory-information?_s=PM:HEALTH
@rachael5760 (2455)
• Israel
10 May 11
There is a common saying, that you can't put the cat back in the bag. The government has grown so big and employs so many people that it is difficult to go back to limited Federal power. What can be done is to do what Israel is doing. They need health care in the schools, so the contract out the service to a private company. Maybe there are areas in the US that can do this as well? Elect senators and congressmen who are for limited government.
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
10 May 11
That would be difficult. I have extensive knowledge on alternative health practices and some knowledge in allopathic medical practices, but if I was to tell you what to do to heal or get well, I could go to prision under the system we have now because I am not a licensed doctor. While I agree that there must be a system that protects the medical consumer, one person advising another is not harmful if we recognize the person receiving the advice is free to accept it or not. Government is felt to be the answer to that protection. So, can we fix it. Sounds harder and harder to me.
@kenzie45230 (3563)
• United States
9 May 11
Thankfully, home schoolers have been learning the correct history for years, not the re-written history our public school kids get. Just yesterday, I posted an article here: http://www.gather.com/viewArticle.action?articleId=281474979305199 The title says it all, I think: American Students Fail Basic Civics Test That Immigrants Could Pass The article provides a link to a test that was given to college students. It's amazing what they don't know about the US, our government and our history. Only 19% knew why we fought the Civil War. Only 21% knew where the phrase "government of the people, by the people and for the people" originated. 19% answered properly about the Puritans. Only 19% knew where the phrase "wall of separation between church and state" appeared. And, not surprisingly, only 16% understood what the term "free markets" actually means.
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
10 May 11
Great site and I just may join! You did great on that article. Reading it saddened me, but you did great presenting the facts. So, what do we do? Is it fixable? I homeschooled, and I understand why so many are. But can we take back our PUBLIC schools?