Category Archives: Checks & Balances in Government

In America, the Law is King

Thomas Paine

Thomas Paine

“Let a crown be placed thereon, by which the world may know, that so far as we approve of monarchy, that in America the law is King. For as in absolute governments the King is law, so in free countries the law ought to be King; and there ought to be no other.” – Thomas Paine

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Filed under Abuse & Misuse of Power, American Exceptionalism, Checks & Balances in Government, Constitution, Democracy, Democratic Republic, Enumerated Powers & Delegated Authority, Federalism, Founding Fathers, Freedom/Liberty, Government Accountability, Individual Responsibility, Limited Government, Representative Government, Republican Government, Rule of Law, Thomas Paine, Tyranny, Will & Consent of the People

We the People…

Ronald Reagan

Ronald Reagan

We the People…

“We are a nation that has a government—not the other way around… Our government has no power except that granted it by the people…

“Why is the Constitution of the United States so exceptional?

“Well, the difference is so small that it almost escapes you, but it’s so great it tells you the whole story in just three words: We the people. In those other constitutions, the Government tells the people of those countries what they’re allowed to do. In our Constitution, we the people tell the Government what it can do, and it can do only those things listed in that document and no others. Virtually every other revolution in history has just exchanged one set of rulers for another set of rulers. Our revolution is the first to say the people are the masters and government is their servant.” – Ronald Reagan

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Filed under American Exceptionalism, Checks & Balances in Government, Conservative Principles, Constitution, Free Elections, Freedom/Liberty, Government Accountability, Individual Responsibility, Limited Government, Representative Government, Republican Government, Ronald Reagan, Rule of Law, Will & Consent of the People

Every Government Degenerates When Trusted to the Rulers of the People Alone…

Thomas Jefferson

Thomas Jefferson

“Every government degenerates when trusted to the rulers of the people alone. The people themselves, therefore, are its only safe depositories.” — Thomas Jefferson, Notes on the State of Virginia, Query XIV, 1781

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Filed under Abuse & Misuse of Power, Balance of Power, Checks & Balances in Government, Democratic Republic, Enumerated Powers & Delegated Authority, Federalism, Founding Fathers, Government Accountability, Human Nature/Nature of Mankind, Individual Responsibility, Limited Government, Representative Government, Thomas Jefferson, Tyranny, Will & Consent of the People

Government is Instituted for the Common Good

John Adams

John Adams

“Government is instituted for the common good; for the protection, safety, prosperity, and happiness of the people; and not for profit, honor, or private interest of any one man, family, or class of men; therefore, the people alone have an incontestable, unalienable, and indefeasible right to institute government; and to reform, alter, or totally change the same, when their protection, safety, prosperity, and happiness require it.” — John Adams, Thoughts on Government, 1776

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Filed under Abuse & Misuse of Power, Checks & Balances in Government, Courage, Democracy, Democratic Republic, Founding Fathers, Freedom/Liberty, Government Accountability, Individual Responsibility, John Adams, Tyranny, Will & Consent of the People

The Power Under the Constitution Will Always Be in the People…

George Washington

George Washington

“The power under the Constitution will always be in the people. It is entrusted for certain defined purposes, and for a certain limited period, to representatives of their own choosing; and whenever it is executed contrary to  their interest, or not agreeable to their wishes, their servants can, and undoubtedly will, be recalled.” ― George Washington Quote, Letter to Bushrod Washington, Fitzpatrick 29:311; 1787

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Filed under Abuse & Misuse of Power, Balance of Power, Checks & Balances in Government, Constitution, Democracy, Democratic Republic, Enumerated Powers & Delegated Authority, Founding Fathers, George Washington, Government Accountability, Individual Responsibility, Limited Government, People, Republican Government, Rule of Law, Will & Consent of the People

You Must Oblige Government to Control Itself…

James Madison

James Madison

“In framing a government which is to be administered by men over men, the great difficulty lies in this: you must first enable the government to control the governed; and in the next place, oblige it to control itself.” — James Madison, Federalist No. 51, 1788

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Filed under Balance of Power, Checks & Balances in Government, Constitution, Enumerated Powers & Delegated Authority, Federalism, Founding Fathers, Government Accountability, James Madison, Limited Government, Rule of Law, Will & Consent of the People

I Wish Never to See All Offices Transferred to Washington…

Thomas Jefferson

Thomas Jefferson

“[T]he States can best govern our home concerns and the general government our foreign ones. I wish, therefore … never to see all offices transferred to Washington, where, further withdrawn from the eyes of the people, they may more secretly be bought and sold at market.” — Thomas Jefferson, letter to Judge William Johnson, 1823

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Filed under Abuse & Misuse of Power, Balance of Power, Checks & Balances in Government, Democratic Republic, Enumerated Powers & Delegated Authority, Federalism, Founding Fathers, Government Accountability, Individual Responsibility, Limited Government, Republican Government, Thomas Jefferson, Virtue