We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Fred Thompson hits the right notes for me when he talks about federalism, a topic of little interest to either of the George Bushes, nor to any Dems.
A quote from Edwards' piece at TCS:
There has been a void in the Republican presidential race. The GOP candidates have spoken about immigration, taxes, social issues, and the war in Iraq. Mitt Romney, Rudy Giuliani, and John McCain have also spoken frequently about Ronald Reagan in order to position themselves as the political heirs to the great president.
The candidates, however, have overlooked a central idea that animated Reagan's view of government. That was federalism, the constitutional principle that the federal government's responsibilities are "few and defined" as James Madison put it.
Reagan believed that the federal government had grown too big and swallowed up too many activities that, in the words of the 10th Amendment, should be left to the states and the people. Education, welfare, food stamps, and other such activities were not properly federal roles in his view. Here is Reagan kicking off his run for the presidency on November 13, 1979:
"The federal government should do only those things specifically called for in the Constitution. All others shall remain with the states or the people ... The federal government has taken on functions it was never intended to perform and which it does not perform well. There should be a planned, orderly transfer of such functions to states and communities."
Sadly, accomplishing that goal was another story. Read the whole thing.
"Sadly, the Bush administration has buried federalism."
Yes, but it was a dignified burial. Just think what HillaryCare will do- dig it up, drag it through the streets, and then put its head on a pike in the crowded waiting rooms of gov’t approved healthcare providers as a warning to citizens to not do for themselves what she can do for us with our money and in the way she wants. Meanwhile, the Federal government will get so bloated and obese from her programs on top of our other junk food entitlements that even Richard Simmons couldn't help its stuck indoors, maybe terminal condition.
Look what's happening to the UK. The gov gives (nominal, not cutting edge, degraded and delayed) healthcare to its population and then increasingly tells them, even mandates, how they should live their lives. Naggy-statism.
Frederalism is the Rx we need quick before it's too late.
Grant - That is a valid point. The 50+ sets of rules for Health Insurance really does drive up costs. On the other hand, there is nothing stopping the states from cordinating their regulations and laws with each other. Some states try to do this - others, especially New York, actively interfere in other states' business.
National defense, playing world cop, border and port control, veteran services, repairing infrastructure, technology and space to stay ahead of China Putin and the EU, the WOT, revising Iran and Afghanistan and others, energy independence to quit funding nutjobs, etc.. will take cash and manpower to maintain and manage. The way to have all this done privately doesn't seem to have been well thought out and tested yet.
Eliminating education, welfare, food stamps, abortion.. would be like imposing major gun controls – hard to do well if not political suicide for the unskillful. There’s just too many cans of worms to keep capped and DC just hasn’t been smart enough lately. Good problem solvers are needed and not more slick talking ideologues.
What can Fred actually do?
I like Fred & Rudy both, tho they are for sure two different ideas.