Throw the Constitution Out and Start Over

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Blogger Ryan Cooper "The Week" web publication on January 26 put out and article America's Constitution is terrible. Let's throw it out and start over. Mark Levin's Conservative Review web video station highlighted the article and called it rubbish. Other web sites have also presented articles reviewing it. The author, Mark said, has a degree in chemistry which makes him not even close to being an expert on Revolutionary time period history. As an engineer I do not claim to be any more an expert than Ryan so I suggest that consider reading his article.


I would like to point out where I see the errors in the article, maybe enticement you to read it.  He starts with the typical attack on the Constitution, morally hideous compromise with slavery. But this is taking today's standards and applying them to 1700's. Slavery is still accepted in the Muslim world today which is one of the major religions of the world and represents a major slice of the humans on this planet. Slavery outside of Islam was not outlawed until about the time of the Civil War, almost a century after the Declaration of Independence.


He says that the Constitution has fallen prey to the same defects that has toppled every similar government. But he does not define what that defect is. I will, ruled by a small upper class of humans that make decisions for the nation. The population serve the interest of the upper class before they can serve their own interests.


He says there is no mechanism to break a deadlock. That is not quite true, since representatives are elected, the mechanism occurs every two years called an elections and all representatives face election in 6 years. What he is complaining about the long time to break a dead lock. The voters in the end determine how a dead lock is broken. On this point he mentions the super-majority rule in the Senate, which is a senate rule and is not ever required by the Constitution or any amendment.  A Senate Rule that can be changed  by the Senate.


He wants a proportional parliamentary democracy, but purposely ignoring history. Benjamin Franklin and other colony representatives went to England and lobbied the Parliament for decades before the revolution. The lack of representation the occurred violated the law for British citizens, which the colonist were. The other British colonies were given representation or allowed to have their own Parliaments after the American Revolution, opened Parliament eyes, they feared other revolutions.


Gerrymandering has always seem as a problem, but Ryan C., doesn't end it. One approach for example, say that districts have a ratio of area to perimeter length with some provision for the natural boundaries. He create super Gerrymandered district electing three representatives. And makes an unfounded assumption that this will improve choice. How is anyone's guess, and he doesn't provide statistic models to even make his argument. I can assure you that models of boundaries following area perimeter rules have been done. Ratio rules will end one party rule of a district is obvious. The performance of any representative elected is another matter. He also assume with no proof the third parties will gain seats. But the biggest problem of third party candidate is convincing voters that their vote is not wasted. That means a third party candidate need the money to campaign against the coffers of party candidates. The swamp purchase seats in Congress, never mention by Ryan Cooper.


The Founders by experience and history know that the lack of check and balances in a parliament system, doesn't work well most of the time. Britain is a class society rooted in a monarchy. The rights of citizens depended on one's class. The Declaration of Independence states clearly that these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness [property, the product of their sweat equity]. . . Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. . . Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.


Why would one believe that the parliament system that failed the colonist.  They didn't want to have a revolution. The founders in the end had not choice since the parliament was never going to treat them as equal citizens of the empire. Why would this flaw never happen again?  Never answered by Ryan. The reason is simple it could happen again, and the discussion of classes of citizens by the representatives suggest that it will happen again.


Ryan goes further to make the Senate a toothless body and the president an agent of the house which would be the parliament type legislation body. American is not a 'normal country' in Ryan's eyes.


Ryan says, “Constitution as written, makes changing anything nearly impossible. Other countries regularly ditch or overhaul their constitutions to deal with problems.” But he provides no examples. I suggest the USSR is an example. And how about the 27 Amendments to the Constitution. He forgets about them. Impossible NO, it does require agreement of the federation of states, the stake holders that are closer to the voters. It requires the citizens support the Amendment, consent of the governed.


Ryan, America actually is coming close to achievement of a class based government.  Article Five in the Constitution, the firewall of the founders, lets a state driven convention drafted Amendments is the only thing that can stop the collapse of the government he desires, throw the Constitution in the garbage. The citizen effort, consent of the governed, can be found on the web is a grass roots effort to use the firewall means of amending the Constitution. The founders realized that Congress may some day consider themselves a special class. So the Founders in the closing days before the end of the convention to draft the Constitution added a means of drafting amendments out side the Federal government, a fire wall to a corrupt federal government. It passed without must effort. 


Thomas Sutrina Added Jan 30, 2018 - 9:00pm
Ed D., the change in the Federal government has change significantly when the Federal government was much smaller with very few departments beyond the cabinet departments.  Federal government was actually limited so there was not much gravy in Washington.  The states were the big seats of government.  Today the federal government is larger then the state governments.  I believe all of them.  But I would also guess the number of bills past by congress is not much different.  The difference is the laws written by the executive branch of government by unelected officials.
So yes, Ed, I agree that government of a bureaucracy is the same.  The legislative be it Parliament or  bicameral that only creates less the 10% of the laws and may direct the overall direction of the bureaucracy would differ very little.  
Pascal Fervor Added Jan 31, 2018 - 12:19am
Thomas, please use WB's edit feature and fix the numerous typos in your text. Even though in  most cases anyone may figure out what you mean (e.g. your last sentence should read "It passed without much effort.") they are distracting. I think your work here is worthy enough to deserve that extra effort.
Take my advise or not. This is a personal note and the only way for me to reach you, so please delete this comment. WB doesn't provide us with personal note communication.
Flying Junior Added Jan 31, 2018 - 4:59am
Anyone who attacks the United States Constitution will face my opposition.
Flying Junior Added Jan 31, 2018 - 5:02am
I don't buy into this notion that we need to adopt a parlimentarian system with a prime minister instead of a president.   We just need all of you crazy republicans to come to your senses and get off of the FOX and Breitbart. 
Case closed.
George N Romey Added Jan 31, 2018 - 5:32am
Throw out the political parties. They are not needed and we’re not part of the Constitution.
Thomas Sutrina Added Jan 31, 2018 - 8:36am
Ryan Cooper is not a conservative republican, Flying Junior.  And I can not see him even as a RINO Republican.
The founders didn't anticipate parties.  It is the nature of man to form groups.  can not find one government in history without something similar to parties.
Dino Manalis Added Jan 31, 2018 - 12:28pm
 Our constitution is alive and well, it may need new amendments, like a balanced-budget amendment, but the Founding Fathers created an everlasting document we should all be proud of and study in our schools!
Dave Volek Added Jan 31, 2018 - 1:11pm
Please read Mr. Ryan Cooper's article, then follow Thomas' article. This is an important discussion. 
With suffrage increased to all economic classes, all races, and both genders, there is no barrier for disenfranchised citizens from casting their vote. American democracy is indeed open to all. 
The issue, as I see it, is that Americans have mythologized their constitution to the point of sanctity, when indeed it was created by a group of racists, misogynists, and elitists. With this kind of thinking behind the constitution, should we still assume that the Constitution is an infallible political document? Especially for the 21st century?
In my mind, Mr. Cooper is trying the problem with old-world order thinking. He seems to keep the political parties intact with their noisy election campaigns and favor-seeking donors.
And we need to understand that the American way is not the only best way. For example, Canada is a parliamentary democracy, something many Americans deplore. Yet Canadians are not living in some kind of obviously inferior system of government.
The Convention of States movement is interesting. It will be interesting to see if polarized Americans can work together to build a new system. I can see the factions within this movement trying to give their faction an edge in this new power sharing arrangement. And in the end, it will be elites of some kind building this convention. Average people won't have the means to participate. 
Rather I recommend that Americans get rid of the parties altogether. But as Thomas alluded, there is a natural force for ambitious people to band together as factions to gain power and influence. Factions exist in all systems of government, but manifest themselves as political parties in western democracies.
To get rid of political parties, we need to first learn how to sideline that instinct for gathering power and influence. Building the TDG will give us these skills and attitudes.
Johnny Fever Added Jan 31, 2018 - 1:16pm
I think Ryan Cooper makes some excellent points.  Few documents written 250 years ago are relevant today.  Time has exposed plenty of mistakes and weaknesses in our Constitution.  Thankfully, we have amended it so that it remains relevant.  However, it seems like no matter what law is enacted, there are constitutional arguments that can be made to abolish the law.    As a result, the Supreme Court holds all the power and that’s not the way the Constitution was designed to work.  So perhaps it would be best to start over and change it so that there isn’t ambiguity and errors. 
Dave Volek Added Jan 31, 2018 - 1:28pm
There's another layer to the issue you have raised. Ideally, it should be the legislatures that should be writing the laws. But these 18th century institutions only have so much capacity to turn bills into laws.  That capacity may have been OK in 1900, but our societies have become so much more complex. 
One result of this dragging is that the courts are writing more of our laws. If a judge makes an "outside-the-box" verdict (because the current laws don't address the new situation very well) and it does not get challenged, the verdict becomes a precedent for other lawyers to use. In effect, a new law has been created--but one without due democratic process, proven popular support, or accountability.
Thomas Sutrina Added Jan 31, 2018 - 5:42pm
Dino M., COS have quite a presentation about what they have asked the states to put into their request for a convention. The request have to be similar so they made an open end or rather issue related statement of intent or direction for their agents.
The Constitution has been violated in many ways so multiple amendments will be needed. Mark Levin wrote a book presenting the draft of 11 Amendments, The Liberty Amendments.
David V. the problem is not disenfranchising citizens but franchising aliens, the dead, or voting multiple times. This is what the Democratic Party in the states do not want to put in check to catch violators. Some election have pivoted on a very small tents of a percent on local and state races.
David V., seem like you do not see the liberal media attacks and the Democratic spokespeople attach on the founders and those founding documents, 'living Constitution' is an attack. This article by Cooper in it self show that no mythologic status is held by either document.
The founders put in the Amendment process because it was fallible. I have not found an Amendment process in the Koran or Bible. Have you?
The American way may not be the best way but they did have full knowledge of a Parliamentary democracy and rejected it. No one considered it. Todays parliaments may be different then those in the 1700's, but could they revert to something similar and how much effort would that take?
The reason I think the COS approach will work is that the thumb of the Feds harmfully effect every state in the union, self interest is what cause the American Revolution and will cause the COS.
Johnny F., is the Bible, Koran, Magna Carta, works of Plato, etc. relevant today? Age is not the determining factor for relevance.
David V. talks about fallibility, well the founders never imagined the power that the Supreme Court has today, and if they thought it could happen they would have put more checks on the court.
David V. one definition of tyranny is so many laws that it is impossible to not break one. That is the situation we are in.  The Western democracies including the US and Canada have far too many regulations and laws. Fewer is better. We only have Ten Commandments not ten million. Look at religions that have piled on layers of rules. Are they better off?
The courts writing laws is called tyranny. That is described by De Montesquieu, “There is as yet no liberty if the power of judging be not separated from legislative power and the executive power.”     Which means David that the bench should not make laws. The validation of ObamaCare by saying it was a tax when it clearly did not actually in its own words say it was a tax resulted in the Supreme Court making a law.
EmilyJane Iswarm Added Jan 31, 2018 - 7:22pm
I don't see much to agree with in the main article nor in the comments.  First, I would point out that not everything that is wrong with our country is related to the failure of the Constitution.  Our government is deeply corrupted by the influence of bribery that is effected by the circle of campaign contributions and the revolving door lobbyist system.  The pervasive effects of this corruption have so completely altered the nature of government that any evaluation of the Constitution is so clouded by the perversity of bribery that a valid conclusion that could be related a normal situation is impossible.  It would be like arguing the nutritional benefits of milk by evaluating patients that are near death.  You could reasonably claim that the omission of Constitutional provisions to preclude such a situation is a serious flaw but most of the argument presented here relates what is already in the Constitution and not its failures of omission.
As far as scrapping the Constitution and starting over, be careful what you wish for.
The men who wrote the Constitution were well aware of its flaws, particularly its active embrace of slavery.  As unfortunate as this and other flaws might have been, it was a choice of egregious compromise or nothing.  I would take the Constitution over nothing.  The Constitution still has flaws but, although a little worn, it has held up quite well considering the constant destructive challenges of misguided campaigns to weaken the Constitution.  
The courts, which have taken such a beating in this article and the comments, has played a pivotal role in maintaining the integrity and purpose of the Constitution.  Certainly there are authoritarian religious types that think that the freedoms that the courts have supported go too far but I don't agree with that.  Much like the abolition of slavery, the inclusive nature of these expended freedoms reaffirm the inalienable rights of all people to be governed by consent. 
Thomas Sutrina Added Jan 31, 2018 - 8:21pm
EmilyJane, do you really thing I agreed with Ryan Cooper?  Being new to WB the wide swing of ideas is common.  Both liberals and conservative spare on most articles.  I guess we hope that with repetition some truths may actually enter into the mind of the opponents.  It is difficult to get someone that believes something to realize that they were spun.  No one wants to believe they fell for a scam.  Liberals on WB tend to thing just repeating what they know is fact enough.  So when presented with facts the common response is that the author or publication is unrepeatable.  I go looking for a liberal source that can be tied in.         
Katharine Otto Added Jan 31, 2018 - 9:01pm
There are so many issues here, that I feel overwhelmed.  I'm not a fan of the Constitution, but Ryan's Cooper's ideas are worse.  The idea of neutering the Senate and electing the President from the House sounds like a path to dictatorship, with too much power concentrated in the House.
The Supreme Court has too much power, but in the Constitution, it is ill-defined.  That a non-elected body, appointed for life, is the last word in all law negates the entire idea of representative government.  In my opinion, the Supreme Court should rule on laws before they are passed.
The Senate was created to keep the more densely populated states from overwhelming the less populated ones. 
Mr. Cooper presumes that there's something wrong with passing only one law a year.  According to me, that is one law too many, as though the federal government needs more laws.  If it spent the next fifty years repealing one law per year, that wouldn't be enough.
I believe the US government is far too large, unwieldy, warlike, and intrusive.   I wonder if bankruptcy is the only thing that will stop its cancerous growth.  Any new constitution should focus on keeping it within financial boundaries.  
Thomas Sutrina Added Feb 1, 2018 - 8:26am
Katharine O,  You got the point why I posted this article.  Ryan Cooper reaches a wide liberal audience and he has many super-liberals/ Marxist that agree.   The Senate should go back to have some direct responsibility to the state legislature which we elect.  Then Federalism will return.  The state legislatures will rain in the Federal executive departments and end the carrot and stick approach of treating them by those departments.  For example the senate candidates are put on the ballot by the state legislature.  Or even reverse it and the people choose acceptable senators and the state legislature picks from that list.    Mark Levin's approach to judges is to make them have a 12 year term of office since they are political and always have been.  
Dave Volek Added Feb 1, 2018 - 11:15am
I regarded Mr. Cooper article as one of many "rearrange the deck chairs on the Titanic" ways to improve democracy. His ideas are not so novel. On the surface, he believes his ideas are better for democracy. But deep down inside, maybe he believes his favorite kind of candidates will be elected if his ways are adopted. I really couldn't tell if he was a liberal or conservative.
As a Canadian, I have been confused about these presidential executive orders over the past decade. For example, Mr. Trump issued one that allowed offshore oil development in the USA. I had thought that issues "that big" should have the approval of Congress. But it seems that Congress has been relegated to a non-player in many American government decisions. And I can't understand why offshore oil can be opened by EA, but building a wall requires Congress. I can see why these executive orders have evolved with Congress being so stalled in the past 20 years. If Congress is becoming less important, is executive orders not a movement towards an American oligarchy?
Whether a Westminster type parliament or a bicameral Congress, there's really no proof that one system is better than the others. For example, Canada more or less took on the Westiminster system, and we have not became a banana republic when compared to the American model.
But when those pieces of paper that outline the structure of government become discredited by the public, those papers won't hold a country together.
Thomas Sutrina Added Feb 1, 2018 - 1:27pm
David V., De Montesquieu talks about checks and balance with the parliamentary system as an example.  He says that three divisions are needed and they need to be independent.  And that long term decisions require all three have an input.   Executive orders are for short term issues that should be back by laws from the legislature.  The reason Trump has made so many changes in regulations is that they were not created by Congress.  What a president creates alone a president can end.  Obama didn't use the check and balance system to create regulations, and Obama did not do his duty to enforce laws.   
Dave Volek Added Feb 1, 2018 - 2:44pm
Thanks for the explanation. I still can't understand how a president can create new laws by EO. When did this come into being? How often has it been used in the past?
In Canada, we have division from the judiciary, but not between executive and legislative. The prime minister (or his office) makes the big decisions and sets the legislative agenda. We can deem this a conflict of interest.
The Canadian parliamentary system has an informal check-and-balance. Members of Parliament, once elected, can renounce their party affiliation at any time, and remain as MPs until the next election. A prime minister needs about 155 MPs to become prime minister. However there are only about 30 influential jobs to hand out. This means about 125 MPs are mostly lapdogs for the party--in terms of policy and legislative development. 
However, the prime minister must still keep most of those 125 MPs in agreement with his agenda. If too many renounce their party affiliation, the majority is lost.
This informal check-and-balance keeps the prime minister from behaving too arbitrarily.
For example, it would be hard for the current prime minister to open coastal areas on offshore drilling--without first getting the support of those 125 back-bench MPs.
This seems to work. Canada has been doing things this way for 150 years. We are not a banana republic.
Thomas Sutrina Added Feb 1, 2018 - 4:08pm
David V., President or Prime Minister need to act decisively so have the ability to for example declare marshall law and put solders on the streets.  Protect citizens in harms way.  Stop immigrants from entering the country.    Congress or Parliament normally backs up this action because it is done for obvious reasons.   So when Trump stopped DACA EO of Obama he did so because to back up the action required a law from Congress.   The divided Congress or the GOP RINOs  didn't want to end DACA but also didn't want to put their name on the line for or against DACA.  
I said that the British government, the king and Parliament, didn't seem to have good checks and balances in the 1700s.  I think that both systems are always sitting on the edge of effective checks and balances.   
EmilyJane Iswarm Added Feb 1, 2018 - 4:54pm
I had a general sense that they weren't your words from looking at other articles, so, not knowing, I reacted to the words as is.  As for the liberal/conservative thing, I would say that the words "liberal" and "conservative" have no meaning any more.  Instead of conveying information about a person of that ilk, they conjure up a plethora of adjectives that may or may not have anything to the person's identity.
"Liberal" has become a pejorative that retains none of its original meaning and that at various times means: libtard, wimpy, maudlin, weak, emo, snowflake, whiny, socialist, communist, Marxist, lover of big government, welfare recipient, hispanic, black, globalist, immigrant, atheist, buddhist, hippy, pot smoker, drug addict, diversity champion, etc.  "Conservative" commands more respect most likely because it conjures an image of fear.  That is why we "look back over our shoulders" at conservatives.
The original meaning of "liberal" relates to a loose more expedient interpretation of the Constitution.  Roosevelt was a Liberal because he would stretch the accepted traditional interpretation of the Constitution to accommodate his new Deal which was seen as containing Constitutionally prohibited features. 
The NRA is a liberal organization that promotes the expansion of the second amendment beyond its intended protection of the militia and the ability of the state to independently defend itself.
The original meaning of "conservative" was just the opposite.  Barry Goldwater was a Conservative who said that he cared not for the utility nor transient benefit of a law that would push the Constitution beyond it's accepted and reasonable interpretation.  If it was unconstitutional it was in the trash.
I generally agree with Barry Goldwater.  Don't forget that he is quoted as saying, "I don't care if a soldier is straight.  I only care that he can shoot straight."  Or something like that.  How could he be called a conservative if he was willing to allow gays in the military.  My parents were big fans of Goldwater.  I still think he would have been a good president.  He was a man of his time but he was smart enough to know the truth when it passed his way.
opher goodwin Added Feb 1, 2018 - 7:27pm
Any kind of fundamentalism is nuts. Why should anyone adhere to something designed for a different age whether it be a constitution or a religion?
The USA and world has changed. The constitution needs updating. It could be a lot better.
Thomas Sutrina Added Feb 1, 2018 - 9:10pm
EmilyJane, liberal flipped in meaning.  Classic Liberals include the founders of the nation, John Locke, Adam Smith, De Montesquieu, and Martin Luther to name a few.   Modern Liberals are the present crop that include most of the Democratic Party and the RINO Republicans. 
For American liberals they try to implement FDR's 'Second Bill of Rights,' that were never intended to be turned into Amendments so using the word 'bill' is just spin.  I would define them as Fabian Socialist or Democratic Socialist rather then Marxist.  The end objectives between the two is really just spin.  Private ownership is a myth if the government sets all the rules and the private owner only implements vs government ownership.  Just semantics. 
Conservatives goal is to conserve the government that worked according to the founders basic blue print.  Thus an Adam Smith style free enterprise system.  Capitalism is not an economic system but a method of acquiring capital.  Even Marx and all Socialist want capitalism because without it noting can be built.  You do not need banks.   The Declaration of Independence  uses 'pursuit of happyness' replaced 'property' in the Virginia Bill of Rights that was issued a few months before the declaration and from Jefferson's home colony.  Property is the wealth attached to an individual sweet equity and what is accumulated by them or inherited.
Generally you can tell what I write because I have never been a good writer.   
Doug Plumb Added Feb 2, 2018 - 5:16am
I'd like to point out at this time that USA is a Republic, NOT a democracy. A democracy is just a system that is transitioning to a despotism. Its a stage of decay that occurs before despotism and it is fundamentally different from a Republic. In a democracy people can be propagandized to vote for or go along with anything. In a Republic they cannot, there are limits. In a democracy two wolves and a sheep vote for what will be dinner.
re "Yet Canadians are not living in some kind of obviously inferior system of government."
Yes we are. "Fact is no defense in a Canadian court" as said by a justice during Earnst Zundels trial. Holocaust denier trials are inquisitions and you can't have inquisitions in the USA. The Canadian government is extremely corrupt but its well hidden by the Canadian press.
  There is just no point in discussing politics with anyone not well studied at law. Politics is how statutes are created. Statutes have to be created within bounds of the law. Statutes are not the same as laws, attorneys are not the same as lawyers.
@Opher re "Any kind of fundamentalism is nuts. "
  So common law, a law shared in common by all men, equality before the law is "nuts" ?
opher goodwin Added Feb 2, 2018 - 8:27am
Doug - common law is what you call fundamentalism? Not me. I call believing every word of a manmade religion cobbled together in the Dark Ages fundamentalism. I call blind acceptance of a constitution put together hundreds of years ago fundamentalism. I think if common law was blindly adhered too and never updated that too would be stupid.
Thomas Sutrina Added Feb 2, 2018 - 9:07am
Opher G., the Ten Commandments are common laws.  Sharia law is also common laws.  Generally common laws have been around for generation and generally agreed by communities for those communities.  By definition common law is based on fundamental beliefs.   I don't think that any religion would think there common laws are 'cobbled together.'  Also by definition to get common agreement does take decades of acceptance.  Examples would be things that are left out of their religious books.    Blind acceptance happens in cults that seldom last more then the life of the founder.  The Constitution has out lived the founders.  So Opher the Koran and Bible have been the same for centuries.  The Constitution has been updated 27 times.  Some may disagree if the update is an improvement of deficit. 
Dave Volek Added Feb 2, 2018 - 1:21pm
For the longest time, the British parliament was only for the wealthy. And it is interesting to note the American Constitution started out this way. Thankfully things changed to broaden the suffrage.
A lot of emphasis is given to the structures of governance. But modern democracy relies more on the principles than on how the representatives are actually elected (in my opinion).
Freedom of the press, freedom of speech, right for peaceful protest, due legislative process, etc etc all play into making the decisions, albeit mostly in indirect ways.
If we categorize western democracy in three versions: American, British Commonwealth, and Continental Europe, all three have advanced fairly equally over the decades and centuries. So no one is actually superior to the other these days. But all three have the basic principles in tact.
In a like manner, all three systems force the politicians to have a greater loyalty to their party than to the nation.
Benjamin Goldstein Added Feb 2, 2018 - 3:42pm
Dave: American, British Commonwealth, and Continental Europe, all three have advanced fairly equally over the decades and centuries. So no one is actually superior to the other these days. 
That's rubbish. Of course, the Anglo-American-Commonwealth democracy is superior.
Dave Volek Added Feb 2, 2018 - 4:07pm
You have not been following the thread very well.
In this article and other places in WB (and my other internet wanderings) there is a pervasive belief that the American system of governance is vastly superior to other forms of western democracy.  Of course, there are all sorts of theories and platitudes that espouse this axiom. But when we compare the various forms of Western democracy, the American version has not produced a significantly better society than the British version or the continental European version. For example, Canada (with its British version) is not in the same league as Egypt or China in terms of opportunities for its citizens and human rights. Canada is not a banana republic when compared to the USA. 
On a similar vein, there are many advocates for improving American democracy by going back to the original constitution----as if America has greatly departed from that path. 
Benjamin Goldstein Added Feb 2, 2018 - 4:27pm
the American version has not produced a significantly better society than the British version or the continental European version.
Sure it has. I may add that it also produced a better society than Canada's where you are not allowed to speak. The Jordan Peterson case is only the most prominent one.
Canada and Egypt are not in the same league. But the main barrier is language. Canada inherited a big chunk of the Ango-US-American culture that Arabs and continental Europeans don't understand.
This understanding of the democratic principles is key. Britain, for example, is formally not a secular country. Germany is formally a secular country, but Germans don't understand the meaning of the word. The Catholic Church and the Lutheran Church are legal entities that belong to the state and have rights of the state. The German tax office collects the tithe along with the income tax. Religious instruction is the only subject that must be offered by schools as demanded by the constitution and yet the same constitution has the lines, "Germany has no state church" and "Religious communities are public institutions" both in the same article (Art 137). Many hospitals, kindergartens and other 'social institutions' are run by churches with privileges (e.g. they can fire homosexuals), but are paid by the state. It goes on and on.
The point is that principles are written down somewhere but by the allied forces after the WWII. The meaning of the words are unknown to Germans to this day. Some principles like "market of idea" are unheard of and have no widely known translation in the German language. Liberals who cover it up or even praise continental European democracies are blatantly lying.
Dave Volek Added Feb 2, 2018 - 5:44pm
The Jordan Peterson case has got lots of attention in Canada. CBC had a pretty big piece on him in  one of their hour-long news casts. 
There are those who adhere that Canada is not a democracy in any way because our legal head of state is the Queen of England,  In theory, she can veto any legislation from the Canadian Parliament. So this makes Canada a monarchy.
Behaviour wise, Canada is very much a democracy. Leaders are chosen by popular support. Laws are created by due process. And many other things associated with democracies.
Canadians and Americans lead very similar lives. Opportunity is on both sides of the borders. There is freedom to work for political causes. If we look at the results, there doesn't seem to be a lot of difference to me.
Doug Plumb Added Feb 3, 2018 - 3:59am
@Opher re "Not me. I call believing every word of a manmade religion cobbled together in the Dark Ages fundamentalism. "
So did Christ. He said the Greeks were to superstitious.
Doug Plumb Added Feb 3, 2018 - 4:02am
re "In theory, she can veto any legislation from the Canadian Parliament. So this makes Canada a monarchy."
Not since the late 70's. Prior to the late 70's the governor general of Canada checked all legislation on behalf of the monarch to ensure that it met common law standards before being passed into law.
  Now Governor general is just a vestigal position and the monarch has no say in Canada's legislation. Although Canada does claim to be common law, we have had political prisoners, one being Dean Clifford, for questioning the monetary system.
Doug Plumb Added Feb 3, 2018 - 4:04am
@ Banjamin re "The Jordan Peterson case is only the most prominent one."
Canada has free speech guarenteed in its constitution, but when you sell your words you enter a commercial jurisdiction where you have no rights.
Doug Plumb Added Feb 3, 2018 - 4:04am
re "Behaviour wise, Canada is very much a democracy. Leaders are chosen by popular support. "
We just select leaders with good hair, that's all.
Doug Plumb Added Feb 3, 2018 - 4:08am
@Thomas re "Sharia law is also common laws. "
Not possible. Common law is law that is common to all men. Islam does not have the same laws for Christians as for Muslims. To live as a Christian in a Muslim society you must become a Demi and pay tax to the Muslim. Same applies with Judaism, but under Jewish law, all Christians are to be killed. See the Noahide laws.
Thomas Sutrina Added Feb 3, 2018 - 8:22am
Muslims accept Abraham from Judaism which means they accept the Ten Commandments, however; Sharia, which is universally understood by all Muslims thus COMMON, modifies the commandments by defining that it applies to Muslims and other humans are lesser humans, animal status.  The commandments apply to humans thus Muslims.
Thomas Sutrina Added Feb 3, 2018 - 8:25am
Antifa and the liberals put down speakers in America also.  Jordan Peterson and the other put down by those that support correct speech, their standards of course, I find on the internet, do make public speeches, teach classes etc.  They have a lot of free speech but not absolute free speech. 
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Feb 3, 2018 - 9:46am
Instead, why not just throw out thousands of case law examples of judicial activism from SCOTUS and lower courts that have distorted the Constitution as the system works if it is not warped!
"Antifa and the liberals put down speakers in America also."
An attack on 1A? The left delights on publishing secret information from the government. 
The FBI is now corrupt. 
The Dems  do a lot more than that like ballot box-stuffing, corruption in the FBI, hiding felons, supporting corruption,  bowing to our enemies [Iran, NOKO] and more. 
Benjamin Goldstein Added Feb 3, 2018 - 11:23am
Sutrina: Muslims don't have anything to do with the ten commandments. BTW they were given to Moses, not Abraham.
Dave: People who think that an uninvolved monarch is an issue are morons. My issue, and i don't want to be too confrontational, because I involuntarily alienate everybody recently, is that Canada has actual laws that forbid free speech.
It is myopic to say that it's enough that your own freedoms don't feel restricted. A Saudi in alliance with his King has all freedoms he desires and, yet, the Western culture is freer than the Saudi Arabian culture. The fact that you don't feel the boundaries of freedom does not mean that you are equally free. You are not.
Thomas Sutrina Added Feb 3, 2018 - 2:03pm
Benjamin G.  do your home work,
First page of search.  The third source goes through all ten commandments and show the passages in Islam that match.
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Feb 3, 2018 - 2:44pm
"First page of search."
Very good. 

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