1187. (1-12-2011) By a limited constitution, I understand one which contains certain specified exceptions to the legislative authority; such, for instance, as that it shall pass no bills of attainder (an act of legislature finding a person guilty of treason or felony without trial. – Dictionary.com)ATJ, ex post facto (after the fact)ATJ laws, and the like. Limitations of this kind can be preserved in practice no other way than through the medium of courts of justice; whose duty it must be to declare all acts contrary to the manifest tenor of the constitution void. Without this, all the reservations of particular rights or privileges would amount to nothing.
- Alexander Hamilton – Federalist No. LXXVIII, 1788
1188. (1-12-2011) Their (the Founders)ATJ experience had also taught them that any constitution that allocated and distributed the different powers thereby necessarily limited the powers of any authority….They perceived that, once such a document assigned specific powers to different authorities, it would also limit their powers not only in regard to the subjects or the aims to be pursued but also with regard to the methods to be employed. To the colonists, freedom meant that government should have powers only for such action as was explicitly required by law, so that nobody should possess any arbitrary power.
- Friedrich A. Hayek – The Constitution of Liberty, 1978
1189. (1-13-2011) The very definition of liberty was freedom from arbitrary rule.