Brett Kavanaugh Uses Prager U. Maxim In Supreme Court Opinion

  
By:  john-russell  •  4 months ago  •  118 comments

Brett Kavanaugh Uses Prager U. Maxim In Supreme Court Opinion

Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh , widely believed by the center-left to be a water carrier for right wing philosophies on the Roberts court , wrote a majority opinion the other day.




It is sometimes said that the bigger the government, the smaller the individual. Consistent with the text of the Constitution, the state-action doctrine enforces a critical boundary between the government and the individual, and thereby protects a robust sphere of individual liberty. Expanding the state-action doctrine beyond its traditional boundaries would expand governmental control while restricting individual liberty and private enterprise. We decline to do so in this case. (bla bla bla)

The phrase ' It is sometimes said that the bigger the government, the smaller the individual.'  appears to have been taken from a Prager U. video from 2014.  ( The phrase is actually the opening lines Prager says in the video)




Mar 3, 2014 -  ... puts it this way: "The  bigger the government, the smaller the citizen. ... Can we get back to the principles of liberty and  individual responsibility ?

Missing:   said   ‎| ‎Must include: ‎ said







The phrase was also found on the website of the Ayn Rand Society, but they may have simply been regurgitating it from Prager U. 

So now we have US Supreme Court justices modeling their words on the thoughts of Dennis Prager, a right wing propagandist who has made some of the most widely despised videos on You Tube. 

related

https://www.alternet.org/2019/06/legal-scholar-tracks-down-the-bizarre-origins-of-the-right-wing-phrase-justice-kavanaugh-used-in-a-new-opinion/

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JohnRussell
1  author  JohnRussell    4 months ago

I thought the SCOTUS had higher standards. 

 
 
 
epistte
1.1  epistte  replied to  JohnRussell @1    4 months ago

Maybe he will quote Alex Jones in the next decsion.

 
 
 
Heartland American
1.1.1  Heartland American  replied to  epistte @1.1    4 months ago

Or maybe it’s such a broad and common value and belief of conservatives that just about any of us could have said it

 
 
 
MrFrost
1.1.2  MrFrost  replied to  epistte @1.1    4 months ago
Alex Jones

Caught sending child porn to Sandy Hook victims. He needs to be locked up permanently. 

 
 
 
Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו
1.1.3  Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו  replied to  Heartland American @1.1.1    4 months ago
broad and common value and belief of conservatives

IOW, Randian horseshit which is immediately jettisoned whenever rightwing culture warriors need to stomp on extremely personal health choices for one particular gender to name just one of their massively sanctimonious crusades. 

 
 
 
KDMichigan
1.2  KDMichigan  replied to  JohnRussell @1    4 months ago

Oh no, or maybe its a saying that's been around...Maybe he lifted it from Real clear politics that used the saying 5 years earlier...

https://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2009/09/01/the_bigger_the_government_the_smaller_the_citizen_98114.html

 
 
 
JohnRussell
1.2.1  author  JohnRussell  replied to  KDMichigan @1.2    4 months ago

You posted a link to something written by Dennis Prager.

Do you have a point?  That Kavanaugh quoted Dennis Prager who may have quoted himself from an earlier article? I dont know, maybe. It's still Prager. 

 
 
 
Heartland American
1.2.2  Heartland American  replied to  JohnRussell @1.2.1    4 months ago

so?  Maybe the Justice is open minded enough to consider the value of the words themselves rather than get all up in arms and refuse to use them because of the site they might have come from?  

 
 
 
KDMichigan
1.2.3  KDMichigan  replied to  JohnRussell @1.2.1    4 months ago
ou posted a link to something written by Dennis Prager.

5 years earlier. You actually think Dennis Prager coined the phrase? 

 
 
 
devangelical
1.3  devangelical  replied to  JohnRussell @1    4 months ago

it's a nod and wink back at dennis prager and the ADF cult.

 
 
 
Heartland American
1.3.1  Heartland American  replied to  devangelical @1.3    4 months ago

What is the ADF cult?  

 
 
 
Don Overton
1.3.2  Don Overton  replied to  Heartland American @1.3.1    4 months ago

Advanced Dumb Fucks

 
 
 
devangelical
1.3.3  devangelical  replied to  Don Overton @1.3.2    4 months ago

Americans Denying Freedom (to others)

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
1.3.4  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Don Overton @1.3.2    4 months ago

If they're 'Advanced' I'd hate to see the Remedial or Beginner DF's...

 
 
 
Heartland American
1.3.5  Heartland American  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @1.3.4    4 months ago
  1. ADF in the real world is of course the very great and highly esteemed patriotic conservative Christian group Alliance Defending Freedom that defends personal freedom and religious liberty:  That awesome group that wins many cases before the Supreme Court and get our members appointed to lower courts. I am very proud to associate myself with them.  
 
 
 
Heartland American
1.4  Heartland American  replied to  JohnRussell @1    4 months ago

You mean like what you used?

left2.png?resize=700%2C78&ssl=1https://i1.wp.com/mediabiasfactcheck.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/left2.png?resize=300%2C33&ssl=1 300w" sizes="(max-width: 700px) 100vw, 700px" > LEFT BIAS

These media sources are moderately to strongly biased toward liberal causes through story selection and/or political affiliation.  They may utilize strong loaded words (wording that attempts to influence an audience by using appeal to emotion or stereotypes), publish misleading reports and omit reporting of information that may damage liberal causes. Some sources in this category may be untrustworthy.  See all Left Bias sources.

  • Overall, we rate AlterNet far Left Biased on story selection and wording that always favors the left and Mixed for factual reporting due to some promotion of pseudoscience.

Detailed Report

Factual Reporting:  MIXED
Country: USA
World Press Freedom Rank: USA 45/180

History

AlterNet is a liberal activist news service and is a project of the non-profit Independent Media Institute that Launched in 1998. According to their about page “AlterNet has developed a unique model of journalism to confront the failures of corporate media, as well as the vitriol and disinformation of right wing media, especially “hate talk” media.” The current editor is Roxanne Cooper.

In 2018, AlterNet was bought by the owners of the left leaning Raw Story under the newly created company AlterNet Media. According John Byrne, who is one of the owners of Raw Story, “AlterNet will continue to carry content from the Independent Media Institute, its prior owner.”  According to Fairness.com the “Independent Media Institute has served the public through the creation and distribution of content about political and social issues.”

Funded by / Ownership

AlterNet is owned by the owners of Raw Story under the name AlterNet Media. The website is funded through online advertising.

Analysis / Bias

In review, AlterNet publishes news with a far left bias through story selection and the use of emotionally loaded words such as these:  Trump goes off in an all-caps New Year’s Eve Twitter meltdown: ‘MEXICO IS PAYING FOR THE WALL’  and  The F Word: The Craven Right Wing Is Now Smearing Teenage School Shooting Survivors . The website also features a separate news category that focuses on negative reports about Donald Trump. When it comes to sourcing, AlterNet typically uses known mainstream sources such as the New York Daily News and NBC News .

AlterNet also frequently delves into pseudoscience with the promotion of anti-GMO propaganda , which is not consistent with the consensus of science. AlterNet has conistently reported on the connection between cell phones and cancer , which is misleading as there is not a scientific consensus on whether radiation for cell phones causes cancer or not.

In general, AlterNet consistently publishes pro-Left news stories and those that denigrate the right.

A factual search reveals that AlterNet has a Mixed claim via Snopes .

Overall, we rate AlterNet far Left Biased on story selection and wording that always favors the left and Mixed for factual reporting due to some promotion of pseudoscience. (5/13/2016) Updated (D. Van Zandt 1/1/2019)

Source:  http://www.alternet.org/

 
 
 
MrFrost
1.4.1  MrFrost  replied to  Heartland American @1.4    4 months ago

Didn't you JUST say that MBFC is a left wing biased site? Now you are using it? LMFAO!!!!

 
 
 
Heartland American
1.4.2  Heartland American  replied to  MrFrost @1.4.1    4 months ago

I did and I am. 

 
 
 
MrFrost
1.4.3  MrFrost  replied to  Heartland American @1.4.2    4 months ago

So when I use it on your articles, you won't flag me... got it. 

 
 
 
Heartland American
1.4.4  Heartland American  replied to  MrFrost @1.4.3    4 months ago

Since we are coerced into using it as a condition of being here, yes, I’ll use it as a weapon against left seeds bias as well.  Equal opportunity.  

 
 
 
epistte
1.4.5  epistte  replied to  Heartland American @1.4.4    4 months ago
Since we are coerced into using it as a condition of being here, yes, I’ll use it as a weapon against left seeds bias as well.  Equal opportunity.  

You are here of your own free will unless there is someone who forces you to post there. Because you chose to be here and you can leave without consequences if you choose to do so, they can be no coercion. The fact that you, like everyone else here, are required to obey the TOS is not coercion.

 
 
 
Heartland American
1.4.6  Heartland American  replied to  epistte @1.4.5    4 months ago

I am here of my own free will.  That much is obvious.  And yes I could have left and didn’t.  I will simply bide my time until the next coc redo to say more about that issue and finding another content control gatekeeper less biased against the religious and the conservative.  

 
 
 
dennis smith
1.5  dennis smith  replied to  JohnRussell @1    4 months ago

As usual, unhappy when a SCOTUS ruling doesn't go a certain way, the usual suspects whine. 

 
 
 
Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו
1.5.1  Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו  replied to  dennis smith @1.5    4 months ago
As usual, unhappy when a SCOTUS ruling doesn't go a certain way, the usual suspects whine. 

Massive Projection Alert!!!!

 
 
 
Heartland American
1.5.2  Heartland American  replied to  Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו @1.5.1    4 months ago

The truth powerfully projected for all to see

 
 
 
Ed-NavDoc
1.6  Ed-NavDoc  replied to  JohnRussell @1    4 months ago

Liberals still pissed and pitching a fit cause Kavanaugh made it to the SCOTUS in spite of them. Just deal with it and go on people!

 

 
 
 
SteevieGee
1.7  SteevieGee  replied to  JohnRussell @1    4 months ago
the state-action doctrine enforces a critical boundary between the government and the individual, and thereby protects a robust sphere of individual liberty.

I guess we'll probably soon see if this robust sphere of individual liberty includes women's reproductive rights or if, by individual, he really just means corporations.

 
 
 
Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו
1.7.1  Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו  replied to  SteevieGee @1.7    4 months ago
I guess we'll probably soon see if this robust sphere of individual liberty includes women's reproductive rights or if, by individual, he really just means corporations.

We really don't have to wait, do we?  It's a foregone conclusion that they'll sing the opposite tune when it comes to crushing women's rights. 

 
 
 
Texan1211
1.7.2  Texan1211  replied to  Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו @1.7.1    4 months ago

[deleted]

 
 
 
Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו
1.7.3  Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו  replied to  Texan1211 @1.7.2    4 months ago

[deleted]

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
2  Sean Treacy    4 months ago

Sound principle.

 
 
 
epistte
2.1  epistte  replied to  Sean Treacy @2    4 months ago
Sound principle.

How is that sound idea?   That assumes that the government does not work in the benefit of the people. This is akin to electing a politician who says that the government is the enemy of the people and then he willfully sabotages the government's ability to function as needed as a way to prove his previous claim.  Stop electing people who aren't working in your best interests a citizen in an interdependent society.

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
2.1.1  Sean Treacy  replied to  epistte @2.1    4 months ago
assumes that the government does not work in the benefit

You should watch the video.

 
 
 
WallyW
2.1.2  WallyW  replied to  epistte @2.1    4 months ago
That assumes that the government does not work in the benefit of the people.

How is government benefiting the people at the present time......

and that means the do-nothing democrats?

 
 
 
epistte
2.1.3  epistte  replied to  WallyW @2.1.2    4 months ago
How is government benefiting the people at the present time...... and that means the do-nothing democrats?

I am hesitant to invest the time and effort into this discussion given your biased partisan attacks and your previous admission of stirring the pot for your amusement. 

Why should we take your partisan claim on face value that the Democrats are the problem instead of the problem being bipartisan?

 
 
 
JohnRussell
2.1.4  author  JohnRussell  replied to  epistte @2.1.3    4 months ago

The phrase in question assumes that in a society with a large government individual rights and stature will necessarily be less, and it is true that in a society ordered by rules and laws there will be some petty restrictions on individual "rights" (i.e. parking restrictions, zoning issues, no drinking in public parks, etc). These things do not make individuals smaller unless one believes that conforming to a society makes one a lesser person. That is a point of view, I suppose, but it is hardly the only or the substantially operative point of view. 

In this case I'm more concerned about Kavanaugh mouthing Dennis Prager in general than I am about the specific phrase used here. 

 
 
 
JohnRussell
2.1.5  author  JohnRussell  replied to  Sean Treacy @2.1.1    4 months ago

Prager's main whine in the video is that government is not always seen as the "last resort" for helping people in economic need. He wants it to be the "last resort", evidently willing to let people and kids nearly starve to death before the "last resort' benchmark is reached.  This is senseless since there is ALWAYS need and poverty in America. Always. 

 
 
 
Greg Jones
2.1.6  Greg Jones  replied to  JohnRussell @2.1.5    4 months ago

True that, and the left apparently wants to make it worse by ignoring the current border crisis. Why do we need more poor people in this country if we can't even take care of our legal population of poor and needy citizens?

 
 
 
Heartland American
2.1.7  Heartland American  replied to  epistte @2.1.3    4 months ago

[Deleted

 
 
 
Heartland American
2.1.8  Heartland American  replied to  JohnRussell @2.1.5    4 months ago

Prager is 100% correct in all that he was quoted saying. Pager is a great American!  

 
 
 
Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו
2.1.9  Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו  replied to  Heartland American @2.1.8    4 months ago
Pager is a great American!  

In your highly extreme opinion only.  

 
 
 
Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו
2.2  Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו  replied to  Sean Treacy @2    4 months ago
Sound principle.

A meaningless slogan. 

 
 
 
Texan1211
3  Texan1211    4 months ago

Kavanaugh wrote the majority decision, so it sure sounds like whatever words he used, the decision was made and agreed on by the majority, so it obviously had legal merit.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
4  author  JohnRussell    4 months ago

https://twitter.com/dorfonlaw/status/1140682108148563973

In today’s 5-4 SCOTUS ruling that a private company administering a public access channel in NYC is not a state actor subject to the First Amendment, Justice Kavanaugh writes for the majority: “It is sometimes said that the bigger the government, the smaller the individual.” 1/

It is? Said by whom? I never heard anyone say this, and the opinion provides no citation, so I Googled it and found the Twitter feed of the Ayn Randian Atlas Society. But what is the origin of this saying? 2/

It appears to be an aphorism coined by a libertarian talk show host named Dennis Prager (who originally referred to “citizen” rather than “individual”). Various libertarian candidates for office have used the phrase, with or w/o attribution. 3/

The claim is false insofar as it asserts a linear relationship between the size of government and the ability of individuals to flourish. Ask Hobbes how well individuals do when one shrinks government down to nothing. 4/

The claim conflates government’s size and its reach. Govt could be large in terms of taxes or spending/GDP ratio but small in its intrusion on people’s lives. Welfare states need not be and generally have not been totalitarian states. 5/

But merits aside, note how five GOP-appointed Justices issue an opinion containing a slogan that seems to travel almost exclusively in the libertarian right-wing-o-verse. [End of thread]

====================================================

 
 
 
Heartland American
4.1  Heartland American  replied to  JohnRussell @4    4 months ago

we follow Burke much more than Hobbes who was his rival in the enlightenment back then.  

 
 
 
Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו
4.1.1  Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו  replied to  Heartland American @4.1    4 months ago

You clearly know nothing about either one of them.

 
 
 
Heartland American
4.1.2  Heartland American  replied to  Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו @4.1.1    4 months ago

I know some about Burke and some of the best things he ever said was on the issue of allowing atheists to serve in government.  

 
 
 
Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו
4.1.3  Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו  replied to  Heartland American @4.1.2    4 months ago

It surprises no one that you'd favor Burke view that only Christians (by his definition) should be allowed to hold political office.  And as you know, his views of Jews was even more vicious so there's the company you keep.  And it's also no surprise that you'd admire his views over this man's:


But it does me no injury for my neighbor to say there are twenty gods or no God. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg.
Millions of innocent men, women and children, since the introduction of Christianity, have been burnt, tortured, fined and imprisoned; yet we have not advanced one inch towards uniformity.

But, thanks again for showing us how at heart you despise the founding principles of this country. 

 
 
 
JohnRussell
5  author  JohnRussell    4 months ago

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dennis_Prager

Dennis Prager isnt even a lawyer, he's essentially a conservative radio talk show host who has expanded into trying to lecture the society on religious (Judeo-Christian) and conservative principles through his Prager U. You Tube channel. 

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
6  Buzz of the Orient    4 months ago

IMPEACH HIM FOR PLAGIARISM!!!   IMPEACH!!   IMPEACH!!!   IMPEACH!!!  s/

 
 
 
Don Overton
6.1  Don Overton  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @6    4 months ago

You actually make great sense  with that comment

 
 
 
bbl-1
7  bbl-1    4 months ago

Kudos to Kavanaugh.  Even those half a dozen Ku Kluxers in their starched shiny whites are standing on hallowed ground.

 
 
 
Tacos!
8  Tacos!    4 months ago

It's hardly a new idea or unique to Dennis Prager. 

 
 
 
Bob Nelson
9  Bob Nelson    4 months ago

The standard for "what is acceptable" has moved so far right that the President of the United States can find "fine people" among the neo-Nazis and White-supremacist of Charlottesville... and his Fox True Believers TM cheer!

So now we have a Supreme Court Justice quoting a far-right YouTuber. The Unthinking Faithful TM applaud...

Kavanaugh probably didn't know what he was doing. "His" opinion was probably written by one of his clerks.

 
 
 
Texan1211
9.1  Texan1211  replied to  Bob Nelson @9    4 months ago

What problem do you have with the actual words used?

Are you mad about the source?

 
 
 
dennis smith
9.2  dennis smith  replied to  Bob Nelson @9    4 months ago

Kavanaugh probably didn't know what he was doing. "His" opinion was probably written by one of his clerks.

PROBABLY didn't know what he was doing. "His" opinion was PROBABLY written by one of his clerks. No certainty, just probably's. 

 
 
 
Bob Nelson
9.2.1  Bob Nelson  replied to  dennis smith @9.2    4 months ago

OK.

"Kavanaugh certainly knew he was channeling a neo-fascist!"

Happy now?

 
 
 
dennis smith
9.2.2  dennis smith  replied to  Bob Nelson @9.2.1    4 months ago

Why would you ask if I am happy now? 

"Kavanaugh certainly knew he was channeling a neo-fascist!"

How do you know this? Are you a mind reader?

 
 
 
Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו
9.2.3  Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו  replied to  dennis smith @9.2.2    4 months ago
Why would you ask if I am happy now? 

That Kavacrybaby's  delivering on fascism is my guess. 

 
 
 
Ronin2
10  Ronin2    4 months ago

For those capable of seeing past a one line deflection, here is a link to the actual ruling.

https://psmag.com/news/a-supreme-courts-decision-could-have-implications-for-social-media-free-speech

Funny how the left will defend Youtube, Facebook, and Twitter that purges anyone of a non left wing ilk; but suddenly gets upset to high heaven when a private non profit public access network decides to not show content that criticizes it. Seems that the "liberal" justices on the Supreme Court like their hypocrisy to only lean to one side.

In their dissent, the Supreme Court's liberal justices maintained that First Amendment constraints should apply to the Manhattan Neighborhood Network: "By accepting that agency relationship, MNN stepped into the City's shoes and thus qualifies as a state actor," Justice Sonia Sotomayor wrote, "subject to the First Amendment like any other."

So the liberal justices should find against Youtube, Facebook, and Twitter.  Can hardly wait to see that ruling when the case finally makes it to the high court.

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
10.1  Sean Treacy  replied to  Ronin2 @10    4 months ago
ices should find against Youtube, Facebook, and Twitter

They won't. 

Unless the issue is not allowing Donald Trump to block people on Twitter. Then the first amendment applies.  But if conservatives sue twitter for their discriminatory polices, then the First Amendment doesn't apply. 

 
 
 
evilgenius
10.2  evilgenius  replied to  Ronin2 @10    4 months ago
Funny how the left will defend Youtube, Facebook, and Twitter that purges anyone of a non left wing ilk; but suddenly gets upset to high heaven when a private non profit public access network decides to not show content that criticizes it. Seems that the "liberal" justices on the Supreme Court like their hypocrisy to only lean to one side.

Setting aside for a moment that breaching terms of service is different than public accommodation laws. Wouldn't it then also be the same hypocrisy shown by conservatives? By your logic then if YouTube et al are wrong then the conservative bakers are also wrong? 

So the liberal justices should find against Youtube, Facebook, and Twitter.

Unless the plaintiffs can show social media platforms breached their own terms of service then all the justices should find for the defendants.

 
 
 
Ronin2
10.2.1  Ronin2  replied to  evilgenius @10.2    4 months ago
Setting aside for a moment that breaching terms of service is different than public accommodation laws. Wouldn't it then also be the same hypocrisy shown by conservatives? By your logic then if YouTube et al are wrong then the conservative bakers are also wrong? 

Seems you missed that this is a privately owned non profit public access channel. Then by my logic the liberal judges should have sided with the bakers, they didn't. Privately owned is privately owned.

Unless the plaintiffs can show social media platforms breached their own terms of service then all the justices should find for the defendants.

All they have to do is show that far anyone with a far left view is not banned/barred from using the platform. Unless you think there isn't offensive speech/actions on the left? Funny thing is I have no problem with You Tube, Twitter, and Facebook banning those on the right, and it should hold up at the highest court as well. They are private companies, their terms of service are their own. They can ban anyone, and any content, they feel like.

What they are doing should spur someone to create a social platform to cater to those on the right; or be truly open access to the public. That would quickly solve the problem by taking clicks away from the others. Hurting their bottom line will bring them into compliance faster than anything else.  No need to involve the courts. 

 
 
 
Nerm_L
11  Nerm_L    4 months ago

I don't understand the complaint.  Someone, please, explain.  Is the complaint that Brett Kavanaugh is too liberal?

"It is sometimes said that the bigger the government, the smaller the individual."

The sentiment embodies liberalism, regardless of the source.  That was the justification for the American Revolution.  

 
 
 
The Magic Eight Ball
11.1  The Magic Eight Ball  replied to  Nerm_L @11    4 months ago
I don't understand the complaint.

neither do the ones complaining about it.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
11.1.1  author  JohnRussell  replied to  The Magic Eight Ball @11.1    4 months ago

I don't think it's unfair to be wondering why a Supreme Court justice quoted a conservative talk show host in one of his SC opinions. 

 
 
 
Texan1211
11.1.2  Texan1211  replied to  JohnRussell @11.1.1    4 months ago

Do you have a problem with the legal decision that was the subject?

If so, why?

Seems like some are merely having kittens because they don't like Kavanaugh, or the person he quoted.

Oh, well.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
11.1.3  Nerm_L  replied to  JohnRussell @11.1.1    4 months ago
I don't think it's unfair to be wondering why a Supreme Court justice quoted a conservative talk show host in one of his SC opinions. 

I believe the sentiment originated with Jean Jacques Rousseau in his treatise titled " On the Social Contract; or, Principles of Political Rights"  published 1762 which was the impetus for political reforms in Europe.  Here is the passage:

"Suppose the State is composed of ten thousand citizens. The Sovereign can only be considered collectively and as a body; but each member, as being a subject, is regarded as an individual: thus the Sovereign is to the subject as ten thousand to one, _i.e._ each member of the State has as his share only a ten-thousandth part of the sovereign authority, although he is wholly under its control. If the people numbers a hundred thousand, the condition of the subject undergoes no change, and each equally is under the whole authority of the laws, while his vote, being reduced to one hundred thousandth part, has ten times less influence in drawing them up. The subject therefore remaining always a unit, the relation between him and the Sovereign increases with the number of the citizens. From this it follows that, the larger the State, the less the liberty. "

Here is a link to a downloadable copy of the book from Project Gutenberg (click Plain Text at the bottom of the list to read the book online):

The Social Contract & Discourses by Jean-Jacques Rousseau

It seems Dennis Prager was restating an idea from one of the most influential liberal thinkers of the 18th century.

 
 
 
The Magic Eight Ball
11.1.4  The Magic Eight Ball  replied to  Nerm_L @11.1.3    4 months ago
It seems Dennis Prager was restating an idea from one of the most influential liberal thinkers of the 18th century.

today's left has nothing in common with old school liberals.

 
 
 
epistte
11.1.5  epistte  replied to  The Magic Eight Ball @11.1.4    4 months ago
today's left has nothing in common with old school liberals.

Current liberals would have been Republicans 45-50 years ago. Dwight Eisenhower (R.)was farther left than Bernie Sanders on economic and domestic policies. Was he a RINO?

What was liberal in the 18th century would now be a very conservative idea as society moves forward and our knowledge increases.

 
 
 
Bob Nelson
11.1.6  Bob Nelson  replied to  epistte @11.1.5    4 months ago

... and the right in the United States is as far right as any ruling party ever has been in any country. In particular, it has abandoned all the principles of democracy.

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
11.1.7  Sean Treacy  replied to  Bob Nelson @11.1.6    4 months ago

I just want to take a second and marvel at the two posts above. It like a window into soviet “historians” rewriting history on the fly to serve the current demands of the party,  Each writer egging on the other to even more fantastical inventions, knowing only that reality serves no purpose in their work.

Here’s my contribution to your symposia of propaganda:

”we’ve always been at war with east Asia”

 
 
 
Bob Nelson
11.1.8  Bob Nelson  replied to  Sean Treacy @11.1.7    4 months ago

”we’ve always been at war with MiddleEastia”

 
 
 
WallyW
11.1.9  WallyW  replied to  Bob Nelson @11.1.6    4 months ago
In particular, it has abandoned all the principles of democracy.

Explain in detail, which I'm sure you can't or won't do.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
11.1.10  Nerm_L  replied to  epistte @11.1.5    4 months ago
Current liberals would have been Republicans 45-50 years ago. Dwight Eisenhower (R.)was farther left than Bernie Sanders on economic and domestic policies. Was he a RINO? What was liberal in the 18th century would now be a very conservative idea as society moves forward and our knowledge increases.

But the ideas that resulted in the American and French Revolutions haven't changed.  The enlightened thinkers of the 17th and 18th centuries were wary of political parties and our increased knowledge has only substantiated their wariness.  Knowledge obtained over the intervening years does not refute but rather gives greater clarity to the ideas that established self government through consent of the governed.

I submit that our knowledge has diminished rather than increased because we have forgotten the rational philosophy of Descartes, John Locke, Francis Bacon, Thomas Paine, David Hume, Spinoza, Voltaire, and Rousseau.  Irrational knowledge was not the hallmark of the Age of Enlightenment.  I submit that modern society has entered a new dark age where irrationality has displaced ability to think. 

People are more ignorant today than in the 18th century because they have become dependent upon someone else to do the thinking.  We have data everywhere but there is a dearth of rational ideas.  Data has become a 'bread and circuses' means for depriving the governed a voice in governing themselves.  Knowledge has become a tyrannical dictator.

 
 
 
Bob Nelson
11.1.11  Bob Nelson  replied to  WallyW @11.1.9    4 months ago

By what right do you give orders?

 
 
 
epistte
11.1.12  epistte  replied to  Nerm_L @11.1.10    4 months ago
People are more ignorant today than in the 18th century because they have become dependent upon someone else to do the thinking.  We have data everywhere but there is a dearth of rational ideas.  Data has become a 'bread and circuses' means for depriving the governed a voice in governing themselves.  Knowledge has become a tyrannical dictator.

You might want to re-think this claim.

 
 
 
epistte
11.1.13  epistte  replied to  Bob Nelson @11.1.6    4 months ago
... and the right in the United States is as far right as any ruling party ever has been in any country. In particular, it has abandoned all the principles of democracy.

I agree. Trump and Bolsanaros in Brazil are very close. Trump would love it if the Constitution gave him the power to be dictatorial, but even with the Constitution, the GOP won't hold him accountable.   The Founders didn't support political parties and we are seeing why that is because of all three branches of the government are held by the same party the government breaks down because they don't hold each other accountable, as they were designed to do.  This problem must be addressed if the country is to survive.  

 
 
 
Nerm_L
11.1.14  Nerm_L  replied to  epistte @11.1.12    4 months ago
You might want to re-think this claim.

We are encouraged not to think.  Decisions are made based on statistical samples and data models.  But everyone overlooks the margin of error and the propagation of uncertainty.  So, we end up taking long walks in the woods to cope with the disconnect between reality and our irrational expectations.

Read the excerpt from Rousseau in comment 11.1.3 .   Rousseau's idea can be restated according to today's mode of governance; The larger the data, the smaller the data point.   And we have all become data points.  Outliers are simply discarded with exquisite statistical justification.

Knowledge really has become a tyrannical dictator.  Anything can simply be dismissed with carefully selected data and knowledge while ignoring the uncertainty of what we know.  

 
 
 
epistte
11.1.15  epistte  replied to  Nerm_L @11.1.14    4 months ago
We are encouraged not to think.  Decisions are made based on statistical samples and data models.  But everyone overlooks the margin of error and the propagation of uncertainty.  So, we end up taking long walks in the woods to cope with the disconnect between reality and our irrational expectations.

This is your own belief because many of us are very public in our goal of encouraging logical and critical thinking.

Read the excerpt from Rousseau in comment 11.1.3.   Rousseau's idea can be restated according to today's mode of governance; The larger the data, the smaller the data point.  And we have all become data points.  Outliers are simply discarded with exquisite statistical justification.

I'm not sure where you get this idea because Rousseau was very vocal in his idea of a social contract.  He was a huge influence of mine. We have no power individually but great power as a group.

Knowledge really has become a tyrannical dictator.  Anything can simply be dismissed with carefully selected data and knowledge while ignoring the uncertainty of what we know.  

You have created this circular claim on your own to support your own ideas.

What point are you trying to make because I only see jumbled thinking with no clear end?

 
 
 
Tessylo
11.1.16  Tessylo  replied to  epistte @11.1.15    4 months ago

[Deleted]

 
 
 
Tessylo
11.1.17  Tessylo  replied to  Bob Nelson @11.1.11    4 months ago

That sounds like another poster but I'm sure he's not a sock puppet, no way.  

 
 
 
livefreeordie
11.1.18  livefreeordie  replied to  Nerm_L @11.1.3    4 months ago

Also Thomas Jefferson 

Jefferson believed that government was the greatest, if not only, threat to individual liberty. He wrote that “The natural progress of things is for liberty to yield and government to gain ground.” This is so because those who gain positions of power tend always to extend the bounds of it. Power must always be constrained or limited else it will increase to the level that it will be despotic. Jefferson wrote to Judge Spencer Roane in 1819, “It should be remembered, as an axiom of eternal truth in politics, that whatever power in any government is independent, is absolute also. . . .”

 
 
 
epistte
11.1.19  epistte  replied to  livefreeordie @11.1.18    4 months ago
Also Thomas Jefferson  Jefferson believed that government was the greatest, if not only, threat to individual liberty. He wrote that “The natural progress of things is for liberty to yield and government to gain ground.” This is so because those who gain positions of power tend always to extend the bounds of it. Power must always be constrained or limited else it will increase to the level that it will be despotic. Jefferson wrote to Judge Spencer Roane in 1819, “It should be remembered, as an axiom of eternal truth in politics, that whatever power in any government is independent, is absolute also. . . .”

This is why we have the Bill of Rights. Jefferson was not referring to a government with no authority to make a decision or a government that did not function.   Certaibklthe did want a situation that allowed religious institutions to made societal decisions. 

Jefferson's views on freedom and the political power of religion are well known. He is not only referring to Catholics but all organized religions.

“In every country and in every age, the priest has been hostile to liberty. He is always in alliance with the despot, abetting his abuses in return for protection to his own.”


Thomas Jefferson

 
 
 
epistte
11.1.20  epistte  replied to  Tessylo @11.1.16    4 months ago
removed for context

Nerm consistently gets ideas very backwards. 

 
 
 
Bob Nelson
11.1.21  Bob Nelson  replied to  epistte @11.1.13    4 months ago
This problem must be addressed if the country is to survive.  

    jrSmiley_81_smiley_image.gif

 
 
 
Bob Nelson
11.1.22  Bob Nelson  replied to  Tessylo @11.1.17    4 months ago
I'm sure he's not a sock puppet, no way.

An ado, I think, trying to assert himself. Bad luck! There are a lot of really wretched role models here on NT.

 
 
 
epistte
11.1.23  epistte  replied to  Bob Nelson @11.1.21    4 months ago

Banning political parties and the money they receive from Citizens United would go a long way to moving the country forward.

There might be a problem with banning political parties because of the First Amendment.  This clause has already been used to legitimize unions.

or the right of the people peaceably to assemble,

We must also address mental health and their ability to hold office of the politicians.  Reagan's altzheimers was the first that I remember but there could have been other before that situation.

 
 
 
Bob Nelson
11.1.24  Bob Nelson  replied to  epistte @11.1.23    4 months ago

Unlimited campaign duration is stupid.

Unlimited campaign budgets are stupid.

Unlimited campaign contributions is stupid.

Oh, and... on a different but parallel subject, first past the post, districted elections are stupidity.

 
 
 
Ender
11.1.25  Ender  replied to  epistte @11.1.23    4 months ago

I agree with you about CU. I hate to say this but to me another problem is the House having elections every two years. In a way it almost keeps them in perpetual election mode.

I guess I am not quite sure the rational of the length of terms, such as the senate having a six year term and the house having two year term.

I think both chambers should have a four year run.

 
 
 
epistte
11.1.26  epistte  replied to  Ender @11.1.25    4 months ago
I agree with you about CU. I hate to say this but to me another problem is the House having elections every two years. In a way it almost keeps them in perpetual election mode.

The House of Representatives was designed to be more populist and more reactive to the opinions/will of the people. This is why the terms are shorter.

I guess I am not quite sure the rational of the length of terms, such as the senate having a six year term and the house having two year term. I think both chambers should have a four year run.

There is a reason for their election cycles.

The framers of the Constitution created the United States Senate to protect the rights of individual states and safeguard minority opinion in a system of government designed to give greater power to the national government. They modeled the Senate on governors' councils of the colonial era and on the state senates that had evolved since independence. The framers intended the Senate to be an independent body of responsible citizens who would share power with the president and the House of Representatives. James Madison, paraphrasing Edmund Randolph, explained in his notes that the Senate's role was "first to protect the people against their rulers [and] secondly to protect the people against the transient impressions into which they themselves might be led." To balance power between the large and small states, the Constitution's framers agreed that states would be represented equally in the Senate and in proportion to their populations in the House. Further preserving the authority of individual states, they provided that state legislatures would elect senators. To guarantee senators' independence from short-term political pressures, the framers designed a six-year Senate term, three times as long as that of popularly elected members of the House of Representatives. Madison reasoned that longer terms would provide stability. "If it not be a firm body," he concluded, "the other branch being more numerous, and coming immediately from the people, will overwhelm it." Responding to fears that a six-year Senate term would produce an unreachable aristocracy in the Senate, the framers specified that one-third of the members' terms would expire every two years, leaving two-thirds of the members in office. This combined the principles of continuity and rotation in office.
 
 
 
Nerm_L
11.1.27  Nerm_L  replied to  epistte @11.1.15    4 months ago
I'm not sure where you get this idea because Rousseau was very vocal in his idea of a social contract.  He was a huge influence of mine. We have no power individually but great power as a group.

The essence of Rousseau's idea of a social contract is that government does not have political legitimacy to make law.  Sovereignty resides in the people and only the people have legitimate authority to make law and consent to law.

Rousseau was an advocate of pure democracy (one man, one vote) with a clear understanding of the despotic nature of the majority.  Rousseau argued that large populations could not be democratic; small democratic governments (city states or smaller) ensured the sovereignty of the people.  The smaller the population forming government, the greater the liberty.

You have created this circular claim on your own to support your own ideas. What point are you trying to make because I only see jumbled thinking with no clear end?

Does sovereignty and political legitimacy to make law reside in knowledge?  Rousseau's answer would be negative.  Facts and data cannot make a social contract.

(BTW, I don't agree with Rousseau's ideas about pure democracy.  I believe our representative democracy is a better approach to governing.  But the idea that political legitimacy of any government resides in consent of the governed is a sound philosophy.)

 
 
 
epistte
11.1.28  epistte  replied to  Nerm_L @11.1.27    4 months ago
Does sovereignty and political legitimacy to make law reside in knowledge?  Rousseau's answer would be negative.  Facts and data cannot make a social contract.

Nobody said that it did. This is your own claim that you are making circular. The people still have a voice in government even with the use of statistics and data. 

 
 
 
Jack_TX
11.1.29  Jack_TX  replied to  epistte @11.1.23    4 months ago
Banning political parties and the money they receive from Citizens United would go a long way to moving the country forward.

No.  It wouldn't.  And why is the only the Citizens United money problematic?  Why isn't the Priorities USA money (for example) a problem?

There might be a problem with banning political parties because of the First Amendment.

Y'think??

We must also address mental health and their ability to hold office of the politicians.

We should first address the real issue, which is your quest for absolutely any means to suppress people you disagree with.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
11.1.30  Jack_TX  replied to  Bob Nelson @11.1.8    4 months ago
we’ve always been at war with MiddleEastia

Nah.  Only since 1948.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
11.1.31  Jack_TX  replied to  epistte @11.1.5    4 months ago
Current liberals would have been Republicans 45-50 years ago.

Liberals, yes.  Current leftists...they're as delusional now as ever.

Dwight Eisenhower (R.)was farther left than Bernie Sanders on economic and domestic policies. Was he a RINO?

Utter nonsense.  Ike despised socialize healthcare and compulsory participation in health insurance.

Use a sensible example.  Reagan was further left than Obama.

What was liberal in the 18th century would now be a very conservative idea as society moves forward and our knowledge increases.

And as the Church loses its grip on government influence.

 
 
 
epistte
11.1.32  epistte  replied to  Jack_TX @11.1.31    4 months ago
Utter nonsense.  Ike despised socialize healthcare and compulsory participation in health insurance.

It sounds like Eisenhower would have approved of the ACA.  I still support universal healthcare. 

So how did Ike reconcile his opposition to socialized medicine with his recognition of medical needs?  According to The Heart of Power , a wonderful book  by David Blumenthal and James Morone, Eisenhower reconciled these two goals by pushing for federal subsidies of private insurance plans.  Here is what Ike said in Salt Lake City that day:
“Legislation which compels you to join in a federal health insurance plan is wrong.  It is also wrong—morally and economically wrong—to ignore the health problems of those who cannot pay the cost of adequate medical care.  Federal aid to local health plans that helps make medical care available to those who need it is right.”

Federal aid to local health plans--a truly moderate idea, one that addresses an important social need while promoting private health insurance markets.  Ike had found a way to provide Americans with health insurance, without socializing either medical care or healthcare insurance. That sounds an awful lot like The Affordable Care Act, which pushed aside desires on the political left to socialize healthcare insurance and provide “Medicare for all.” Instead, the law promotes private health insurance, by subsidizing people’s premiums through the health insurance exchanges.

.

And as the Church loses its grip on government influence.

As it should until it is understood to be a mythology, just as Zeus, Vishnu, Horus, and Jupiter.

 
 
 
epistte
11.1.33  epistte  replied to  Jack_TX @11.1.29    4 months ago
No.  It wouldn't.  And why is the only the Citizens United money problematic?  Why isn't the Priorities USA money (for example) a problem?

Citizens United allows an unlimited amount of money under the flawed premise that money in the election is free speech. I'd rather have all elections to be publically funded and get private money and influence out of the process. 

We should first address the real issue, which is your quest for absolutely any means to suppress people you disagree with.

Who public voice am I seeking to suppress? I've never heard this claim. 

 
 
 
Jack_TX
11.1.34  Jack_TX  replied to  epistte @11.1.33    4 months ago
Citizens United allows an unlimited amount of money under the flawed premise that money in the election is free speech. I'd rather have all elections to be publically funded and get private money and influence out of the process. 

Citizens United is a PAC, just like dozens of other PACs.

Even if you could stop them giving money to candidates, you cannot stop them buying TV/Facebook/Twitter ads to express their views.  It's a free country, and people can say what they want.

Who public voice am I seeking to suppress? I've never heard this claim. 

Now that somebody you don't like is in office, suddenly you want to invoke a "mental health" rule. 

Out of curiosity, let's see that list of the elected Democrats you believe were mentally unfit for office.

 
 
 
JBB
11.1.35  JBB  replied to  Jack_TX @11.1.34    4 months ago

WRONGO! Citizens United, as used here, was a Supreme Court case that removed the historic limits on corporate donations to political campaigns allowing multinational corporations to influence our politics with unlimited contributions...

 
 
 
epistte
11.1.36  epistte  replied to  Jack_TX @11.1.34    4 months ago
Citizens United is a PAC, just like dozens of other PACs. Even if you could stop them giving money to candidates, you cannot stop them buying TV/Facebook/Twitter ads to express their views.  It's a free country, and people can say what they want.

Why should we allow that to happen? Why should people with more money be permitted to have a louder voice in the electoral process?

Now that somebody you don't like is in office, suddenly you want to invoke a "mental health" rule.  Out of curiosity, let's see that list of the elected Democrats you believe were mentally unfit for office.

That would require multiple qualified doctors to make that decision. Obviously, I do not have an MD or Ph.D. in psychology. It would not be voted on by members of Congress or federal judges.  Currently, this is a grey area of the 25th Amendment. 

 
 
 
epistte
11.1.37  epistte  replied to  JBB @11.1.35    4 months ago
WRONGO! Citizens United, as used here, was a Supreme Court case that removed the historic limits on corporate donations to political campaigns allowing multinational corporations to influence our politics with unlimited contributions...

Thank you for explaining that to Mr. Jack-Texas.

 
 
 
dennis smith
11.1.38  dennis smith  replied to  Bob Nelson @11.1.22    4 months ago
Kavanaugh probably didn't know what he was doing. "His" opinion was probably written by one of his clerks.

 
 
 
Texan1211
11.1.39  Texan1211  replied to  JBB @11.1.35    4 months ago
WRONGO! Citizens United, as used here, was a Supreme Court case that removed the historic limits on corporate donations to political campaigns allowing multinational corporations to influence our politics with unlimited contributions..

Where did you get that from?

From Wikipedia:

The court upheld requirements, however, for public disclosure by sponsors of advertisements. The case did not affect the federal ban on direct contributions from corporations or unions to candidate campaigns or political parties.

The case did not involve the federal ban on direct contributions from corporations or unions to candidate campaigns or political parties, which remain illegal in races for federal office.[11]

So NO, the CU ruling simply did NOT remove historic limits on corporate donations. And I don't give a damn what someone told you, they were wrong of they told you otherwise.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
11.1.40  Jack_TX  replied to  JBB @11.1.35    4 months ago
WRONGO! Citizens United, as used here, was a Supreme Court case that removed the historic limits on corporate donations to political campaigns allowing multinational corporations to influence our politics with unlimited contributions...

One does not "receive money" from a Supreme Court ruling.

One may receive money from a PAC, which Citizens United is.....  http://www.citizensunited.org/

 
 
 
Jack_TX
11.1.41  Jack_TX  replied to  epistte @11.1.36    4 months ago
Why should we allow that to happen? Why should people with more money be permitted to have a louder voice in the electoral process?

Why should we allow free speech?  Why should we allow people to spend their money how they want?  I wish I was surprised that to find you place no value on liberty.

That would require multiple qualified doctors to make that decision. Obviously, I do not have an MD or Ph.D. in psychology. It would not be voted on by members of Congress or federal judges.  Currently, this is a grey area of the 25th Amendment. 

Why would it be a grey area?  There is a mechanism in place for removing an unfit president.  The only reason you consider it "grey" is your dislike for the current president.

So we shouldn't let people with money be able to spend it, and we should invalidate elections you don't like based on the candidate being "unfit".  

Is freedom just an academic concept in your world?

 
 
 
Jack_TX
11.1.42  Jack_TX  replied to  epistte @11.1.32    4 months ago
It sounds like Eisenhower would have approved of the ACA.  I still support universal healthcare.

Eisenhower would have vetoed the ACA in a nano-second.  

He would have liked the same three things in it that everybody likes, and would have been appalled at all of the other things liberals like to pretend are not actually part of the law.

He definitely would have supported subsidizing private health insurance.  In Ike's world (a far more intelligent world than the one we currently occupy) there would be a single system for subsidizing private insurance from cradle to grave.  It would be massively less expensive and more effective than what we're doing now.

 
 
 
The Magic Eight Ball
12  The Magic Eight Ball    4 months ago
It is sometimes said that the bigger the government, the smaller the individual.

that idea is not new.  the internet did not even exist untill decades after I first heard that.

so obviously prager did not coin the phrase.  LOL just another way of saying:

a govt big enough to give you everything is big enough to take everything away

but if yall want to give credit to prager for coining the phrase?  that is too funny :)

 
 
 
Don Overton
12.1  Don Overton  replied to  The Magic Eight Ball @12    4 months ago

When you find it show the first time it was used, if you can.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
12.2  author  JohnRussell  replied to  The Magic Eight Ball @12    4 months ago
but if yall want to give credit to prager for coining the phrase?  that is too funny

It is possible that someone said it before Prager, but an internet search showed it originating with Prager, so it is factual to say it originated with Prager until someone proves otherwise. 

 
 
 
Jack_TX
12.2.1  Jack_TX  replied to  JohnRussell @12.2    4 months ago
It is possible that someone said it before Prager, but an internet search showed it originating with Prager, so it is factual to say it originated with Prager until someone proves otherwise. 

People have been saying it for hundreds of years.  

"An internet search" is somehow the determining source of "fact".  Oh my goodness.  Because everything on the internet is true.....

 
 
 
The Magic Eight Ball
12.2.2  The Magic Eight Ball  replied to  Jack_TX @12.2.1    4 months ago
Because everything on the internet is true.....

or if it's not on the internet it never happened... LOL

my family said that stuff all the time when I was growing up but now I have to find the original person who coined the phrase? or my parents never said that?  as if...  too funny.

they will never learn... the bs just does not work on us old fuks.. LOL

 
 
 
Texan1211
13  Texan1211    4 months ago

it is funny that while many are complaining about the use of a quote from Prager, no one is bothering to complain about the actual words--just the source.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
14  Jack_TX    4 months ago
The phrase 'It is sometimes said that the bigger the government, the smaller the individual.'  appears to have been taken from a Prager U. video from 2014.

How poorly educated are you if you think this concept started 5 years ago on YouTube? 

Do they teach ANYTHING about the American Revolution in schools beyond "Washington had slaves"??  Was "The Enlightenment" just something that created coffee shops?

This is like those people who freak out at the use of the word "niggardly", imagining it to be racist.

 
 
 
dennis smith
15  dennis smith    4 months ago

Certain liberals find something wrong with anything a conservative says or writes. Their glass houses are falling down and they can do nothing but find fault with those they disagree with.

 
 
 
Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו
15.1  Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו  replied to  dennis smith @15    4 months ago
Certain liberals find something wrong with anything a conservative says or writes.

Might want to have a self-reflection session if you really want to understand why.   

 
 
 
Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו
16  Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו    4 months ago

Kavascum is just using the same language perversion and propagandizing of his Shitbag sponsor:  i.e.,  "A lot of people say [insert complete bullshit here]" 

 
 
 
Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו
17  Atheist יוחנן בן אברהם אבינו    4 months ago

Re: Don Overton 6.1

Even a broken clock is correct twice a day and a blind squirrel can still stumble into a nut. 

 
 
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