“The preservation of the sacred fire of liberty…is finally staked, on the experiment entrusted to the hands of the American people” – George Washington
[UPDATE: Part 2, "some responses & clarifications" is now posted.]
[UPDATE II: Part 3, "specific abuses of Executive Power" is up]
America’s Founding Fathers consistently referred to our country as a “grand experiment”, and on this President’s Day–and good ol’ George’s birthday–I want to meditate on this for a little bit. What was (is?) so “experimental” about America?
There seems to be a repeated “life-cycle” to nearly every great power in the entire history of the world. In the beginning of most of these nations, the “power” and authority is more or less decentralized (perhaps in a localized, tribal, or feudal system–or in our case, States).
Over the course of time, though, this “power” becomes increasingly centralized: first, into one part of society (usually to the wealthy and their businesses), then it gathers into one part of the government, and then it continues onward until it is ultimately centralized in one person.