Principium Volume II, Book 11, Quote 1194, 1196, and 1197

1194. (1-14-2020) Constitutionalism means that all power rests on the understanding that it will be exercised according to commonly accepted principles, that the persons on whom power is conferred are selected because it is thought that they are most likely to do what is right, not in order that whatever they do should be right. It rests, in the last resort, on the understanding that power is ultimately not a physical fact but a state of opinion which makes people obey.

- Friedrich A. Hayek – The Constitution of Liberty, 1978

1196. (1-14-2011) The principal concern [of]…what constitutionalism meant to Americans,…was, as the Bill of Rights preceding the constitution of Massachusetts of 1780 expressed it, that the government should be “a government of laws, not of men.

- Friedrich A. Hayek – The Constitution of Liberty, 1978

1197. (1-14-2011) (Concerning the commonality of the beliefs enshrined in various Bills of Rights during the founding era, these beliefs were well dispersed among the whole nation.)ATJ Each of these instruments declared that no one should be deprived of his liberty except by law or by judgment of his peers; that everyone, when prosecuted, should be entitled to a copy of the indictment brought against him, as well as to the right of procuring counsel and evidence: and that no one should be compelled to give evidence against himself. They all carefully guarded the right of trial by jury; guaranteed freedom of the press and free elections; forbade the granting of titles of nobility, hereditary honors and exclusive privileges. All of these instruments, except those of Virginia and Maryland, guaranteed the rights of assembly, petition, and instruction of representatives. All except those of Pennsylvania and Vermont forbade the requirement of excessive bail, the imposition of excessive fines, the infliction of unusual punishments, the suspension of laws by any other authority than the legislature, and taxation without representation.

- W.C. Webster – A Comparative Study of the State Constitutions of the American Revolution

– Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, IX, 1897

(To really understand why these principles are important, you have to find cases or places that do not have them and see how bad it is without these guarantees. Fortunately, we have the histories of several Dictatorships, Communist countries, and other sources that point to the debauchery inflicted on a society by men and governments without these guarantees, rights, and controls on government.)ATJ

1 view0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

1331. (3-3-2011) (The book “On Power” is going to be much more cerebral and feel abstract, but lend your mental faculties to it and bits of truth begin to come. Like the leaks in a dam, dike, or levy,