Sunday, February 1, 2009

Strict Constructionist Democrats

During George W. Bush’s two terms in office, the Democrats rediscovered the constitution. Democrats' frequent claims that the tactics utilized by the Bush administration in prosecuting its “War on Terror” were unconstitutional, and hence illegal, were predicated on the assumption that the constitution is a fixed and inviolable document: a proscriptive text that recognizes individual's rights that the government must not infringe upon, and not a “living document,” subject to the whims of fashion or caprice, nor a vile conspiracy against the poor and oppressed perpetrated by a cadre of greedy racist dead white western males, nor a mere assemblage of meaningless words to be “deconstructed” via turgid exegesis by tenured academics, nor, apparently, is the constitution merely, as Barack Obama has stated, an “impediment” to the redistribution of wealth.

In other words, under Bush, the Democrats were transformed—mirabile dictu--into strict constructionists. Now that Barack Obama is president, and Eric Holder is Attorney General, we shall see how long this new-found dedication to the constitution lasts.

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