I continued to be impressed by the quality of our meetings. Hell, I’m impressed that fifteen people would even show up to discuss a topic related to Constitutional law. We seem to be able to have interesting discussions on almost anything. Here are a few follow-up links to topics we couldn’t really get into because of their narrowness and complexity.
- As I explained, I personally don’t have much use for the originalist school of Constitutional interpretation. In my experience, “original intent” is mainly used as a political slogan to delegitimize anyone who disagrees with conservative political preferences.
- However, on an academic level, originalism (related to but not identical to “textualism,” I believe) can be more subtle and deserving of respect. Here are some articles that get into the thick weeds a bit but reflect originalist thinking. They are from the legal blog called the Volokh Conspiracy, the only conservative law-oriented blog I read.
- In sharp contrast, read this explanation of the “Tenther” movement. As I mentioned, people who focus on the 10th amendment believe the every expansion of federal power since the New Deal (since 1900, really) is unconstituitional. We had a voice implying such a viewpoint last night. Tentherism rapidly is becoming a pillar of conservative political thought. It ain’t just Rand Paul.
CONSTITUTIONAL LAW READINGS
- This site, “The Constitution In 2020” is great. It excerpts many of the chapters from the book of the same name. Each one covers a different topic. I’d recommend (to Peter, especially) at least the first two and the one on federalism. One of the main authors, Jack Balkin, has a heavy-duty (liberal) legal theory blog here.
- Book I referenced: The Radicalism Of The American Revolution. Way cool explanation of what was truly new and revolutionary in our nation’s founding — a change from a hierarchical view of political and social relations to a more egalitarian one.
- I also added “Lies The Government Told You” to the Books We like tab at the top of the homepage, per Jess’s suggestion. The author appears to be a strong proponent of the “Constitution in exile” theory; i.e., that the pre-New Deal, 1880s-era interpretation of federal power should be restored.