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The New American: Dan Smoot Report- Basic Constitutional Government: 1960s Leader of The Tea Party?

September 13, 2011
Dan Smoot

Dan Smoot

This piece was originally posted at FRS FreeState Now

If you’re a supporter of limited government, as well as individual freedom, that without limited government, individual freedom is threatened, as I am, then you believe in the U.S. Constitution. Because that’s what it’s about. The theory being that the more power that government and I mean any government at any level, has to regulate our lives and do more for us and take more of our money, the less freedom that we have to live our own lives and do these things for ourselves. It’s a big difference between America and Europe.

Where America in many ways is about individualism, the liberty for Americans to live their own lives without being harassed by government. And government taking a lot of their money away from them. Where Europe in a lot of ways is about collectivism. “That we are all in this together meaning life and that we need to put a lot of our resources together into one pot. For the betterment of all people. And government will take this money from people to make the country as good as possible. Through government services basically.”

This is a simple way of putting it, but accurate. If you’re a what’s called Constitutional Conservative, or a Constitutional Constructionist, that you basically believe that government should only do what is laid out for it in the Constitution, that you take that text to be literal and only read the constitution in its literal sense, then of course a lot of what the Federal Government does today would be unconstitutional as you see it.

For me, I see the Constitution as meaning that it’s based on limited government and individual freedom. And the main role of the Federal Government is to protect our individual freedom and not harass us. And not get involved in areas like medical care. Except to regulate it, or marriage at all, except to maybe how it relates to the tax code. Or marijuana, or alcohol, tobacco, prostitution, pornography, etc. Let the people live their own lives as they see fit. That free people have the right to live freely in a free society.

That government should only be doing what the people can’t for themselves, or not as well. That government should be there to regulate and protect. Not regulate people, but regulate how people interact with each other, which is different. Step in when innocent people are being abused unfairly and protect and defend the country. Law Enforcement and a military, both strong, efficient and affordable enough to defend the country. Basically looking after the welfare of the people like a referee, but not try to control the people. With the Welfare Clause in the U.S. Constitution.

I wouldn’t eliminate a lot of the programs that the Federal Government currently operates. I would just reform a lot of them. Most of them in the social welfare area by making them independent of the Federal Government. And letting each state set up their own system in how these services would be operated in their state. That would have to meet basic Federal standards and also run independently of the state and local governments as well. If we had a Federal Government like this, then I believe we could answer a lot of questions and settle debates. About the role of the Federal Government and what its supposed to do under the U.S. Constitution.

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