NY Times recommends scrapping the Constitution

because people like the creators of the NY Times and our Ruling Class are just so much smarter than the rest of us. Fundamentally undermining the entire legal, social, and civil order of the most awesomely powerful militarist society on the planet, scrapping it and replacing it with something else? What could possibly go wrong? Since when have lefties ever made mistakes when they undertake such projects or wound up murdering millions upon millions in the dogged determination to create heaven on earth? What on earth could go wrong if a leftist utopian mishandled a vast military industrial complex? Why do the little people cling to Old Ways when the Great Rosy Dawn beckons?

Mike Flynn has a few choice remarks about these plutocrat tyrant wannabes.

But for most Americans, the real issue is: what is Kim Kardashian doing today? We are a Paris Hilton people in an apocalyptic world.

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  • Stu

    Wow. This guy teaches at Georgetown. And people wonder why, as a college graduate, I am not quick to recommend such “education” for others. Not to mention he teaches at a “Catholic” institution.

    So basically, because the men and women we elected find it too hard to operate within the framework of our government, we change the framework?

    The makers of the movie Idiocracy were prophets.

    • Arnold

      The Law School at Georgetown is located downtown near the courts and has been known for decades as a large and high quality lawyer factory. I doubt that the Catholic or even the Jesuit “tradition” has ever had much influence there even when the College and other parts of the university still could rightly be called “Catholic.” It is in effect a trade school and reflects the values and ideas of the reigning classes in D.C.

    • Jon W

      The makers of the movie Idiocracy were prophets.

      I rather think they were more observers than prophets.

      P.S. I like money.

  • Bryan

    Mark, you don’t seriously believe that we’re governed by the Constitution in this country right now, do you? And I know you were just using a figure of speech, but in truth the Constitution embodies “the Old Ways” only inasmuch as it is one of the last great cultural works of the pre-industrial age. But in The Big Picture, all of history, the Constitution and its ideas are very modern and unproven. And frankly, I don’t think it’s a radical stretch to argue at this point that the notion of Constitutional Representative Democracy has in fact been proven….proven wrong. Dreadfully wrong.

    Again, I present as Exhibit ‘A’ for that case the fact that we in America are not being governed by the Constitution right now, by any stretch of the imagination, corrupt and fallible judicial rulings notwithstanding. When the American facade eventually implodes it will be plurality rule. Christians, fractured and contentious though we are, even among ourselves, will be the only arguably-single-group with the unity of purpose–and, ahem, arsenal–to survive The Real Big Fall when the things of our current world finally fall away. Gird your loins. I’m not saying it will be pleasant, but we all know it’s coming. It’s happening as we speak. The only thing left is an appeal to heaven.

  • Joseph

    I have a lot of problems with the misplaced worship of the Founding Fathers that takes place on the right… either out of ignorance or convenience (they weren’t holy by any stretch of the imagination). Likewise, I have a problem with the Bolsheviks in the media who, if given their chance to lead, would only end up outclassing their great comrade Lenin by surpassing the number of innocent people murdered in cold blood to further their cause constantly asking for subversion and coup.

    The Constitution may not be perfect, but essentially what this Stalinist is complaining about are the consequences of the inbuilt checks and balances… a disgrace for a so-called constitutional lawyer.

  • Rosemarie


    So he thinks that, if the Consititution is scrapped, we would still be able to keep freedom of speech and religion out of respect, not obligation? Yeah, let’s see how long that lasts. Maybe a second or two longer than freedom of the press.

  • Hah! I know who he is. Fortunately, he was neither my nor Mr. Beadgirl’s Con Law professor.

    What a lunatic article.

  • Will

    “NY Times recommends scrapping the Constitution”
    I was expecting a NY Times editorial. The headline on your article is a mite misleading as this is an opinion writer.

    • Mark Shea

      If the NY Times ran an a piece titled “Hitler was right about the Jews” would anybody say, “Hey! It’s just one opinion writer! It’s not like Times is backing him by publishing it!”

      • Will

        Our local newspaper has opinion colums, with headlines, from Thomas Sowell, Byron York, Cokie and Steven V. Roberts, Dana Milbank, Esther J Cepeda, and Diana West, Leonard Pitts, Jr.,Donna Brazile, and others. Most people can tell what is written in an editorial and what is an opinion column.

      • Bob

        No, but that’s an extreme example of an obviously racist viewpoint. The Times also publishes conservative writers like Ross Douthat but you don’t think the Times’ editorial board agrees with him, do you?

        • Mark Shea

          So what? The point is that by giving a place at the table to somebody, they are declaring that their opinion is withing the “universe of discourse”. People who want to abolish the Constitution are extremists, but extremists that the elitists at the Times think deserve a place at the table, whereas nuts who support the Nazi party are *not* granted a place at the table. So don’t BS me that the Time is not offering aid and comfort to scrapping the Constitution.

          • Dale Price

            A-yup. And Seidman is a doyen of Critical Legal Studies, an ultra-left coterie of legal scholars. He’s much more in line with the mindset of the Times’ editorial board than a diversity token like Douthat.

          • Bob

            Never heard of this guy before today, and don’t anything about him. Don’t agree with his view of the Constitution, though his point hat presidents judges and Congress has ignored it for years whenever it suits them is entirely valid, and his point that some of the Constitution’s strictures are designed for the 18th century or not without merit. I am not, in any case, buying comparisons to his views and Hitler’s.

            • Mark Shea

              I’m not comparing his views to Hitler’s. I’m saying that when the NY Times admits him to a place at the table of national discussion, it is saying that his views are “within the pale of discourse” and thereby giving them a measure of approval. Precisely *why* a raving racist is not allowed to publish in the Times is because the Times refuses to allow such people within the universe of discourse permitted at the times. The Times is therefore saying that scrapping the Constitution is on the table for discussion.

  • Seidman is just the next place liberal conlaw goes after the Living Constitution lost to originalism. Like Joseph, I do think his rejection of our idolatry of the Founders and their (excellent) work is refreshing. Also, I do think functionally unicameral parliamentary systems are somewhat more directly accountable to their electorates than our own Congressional morass of bicameralism, filibusters, and the Hastert Rule: they have some advantages and some disadvantages. Still, however idolized, the Constitution generally (and the Bill of Rights in particular) have been a bulwark of liberty for a long time, and long a mainstay of the best Burkean traditions in American politics. Happily, Seidman’s imprudent project seems like it will remain outlandishly unpopular and entirely fanciful for the foreseeable future. In short, I’m somewhat outraged by the piece, but mostly just unimpressed with Seidman.

  • Oh man, have you guys ever lived in a country where human rights is what the local MVD colonel says it is?

    People in the US are so sheltered.Tthe idea of the Constitution is that power doesn’t always win. When power always wins most of us are cold meat.

    • c matt

      I think the basic idea behind the Constitution is that power corrupts, so it needs to be divided against itself. Divided between the states and the fed, and among the branches within the fed. That system has been scrapped for a long time. The fed beat down the states, and the executive has been beating down the other two branches for a while now. Congress, which should be the strongest branch, is now the weakest. The Court and the Pres are now in a duel to the death, and the Court is badly cut. Every appointment, regardless of the Appointer, seems to favor more power to the Pres, if not in words, then in result (c.f. Roberts vis a vis Obamacare).

      Your individual rights, even though God-given, are only respected by the state to the extent some judge decides to respect them, and some executive decides to enforce them. It is not a piece of paper called the Bill of Rights that protects you – it is the human being in black robes, or with a badge and a gun, or behind a desk in a government building that does. And now imagine that these positions are being increasingly filled by cronies of one party or the other.

      • Vicke

        Maybe that is the point. The founders, imperfect sinful men though they were, had the courage of their convictions. It also seems that they were deeply knowledgeable. If there is a way to preserve what we have maybe we need behave according to the truth that our rights come from God. I do believe that we are headed to the place where that will be required by more people. I have heard of pro-lifers who are serving in that capacity now.

    • Rosemarie


      Thank you, Pavel. Yes, we in the US are very sheltered and painfully naive. Seidman especially, judging from the dreck he wrote in that article. Our freedoms will continue without the Constitution, out of respect? Not gonna happen. It’s scary how people can take our freedoms for granted like that, assuming they’ll always be secure no matter what.

  • What’s most troubling to me is not that he recommends significant changes to the Constitution (or even scrapping it) but that there seems to be no attempt to understand WHY the constitution has the provisions it does nor WHY they might be important.

    First and foremost he seems to not ask WHY the very same people who wrote the constitution were quick, in the examples he gave, to attempt to undermine it. And the answer is simple: We are easily corruptible beings who let our current desires easily interfere with what is truly just. The Constitution is SPECIFICALLY written to ensure we protect ourselves from OURSELVES.

    To that very point, I guarantee this writer would not have presented this opinion piece for publication when GW Bush was in office and both houses of Congress were Republican. No, in that instance he’d be glad the Constitution is there to protect him from those who might lord their power over him. Only when the One Ring is in his grasp does he suggest ridding us of the protections the Constitution affords us.

    • Vicke

      Somewhere i read today that if you get rid of any pretense of Law, than you only have rule by power. It makes sense that then the other side is no longer just deluded fools but a dreaded enemy to suppressed at all costs.

  • Stu

    Well, at the lest the 2nd Amendment would be gone? Right?

    • North West

      Well we all know it’s not sacred scripture. 😉 Of course, neither is the first amendant (or any others)…

      • Stu

        Of course. But it sure is at least nice to have something on paper and mostly binding that speaks to the limits of Caesar or Pharaoh.

  • Loud

    Wait, WAIT! This lune wants us to follow the good things in t laws, freedom of speach and religion, out of respect and NOT obligation? Of course e should, but dosent the dunce realize that time after time after time people have tried to VIOLATE those rights? That if there is no legal protection on a fundemental rights, institutions, and even the government, can violate it and abuse us? There wew compaints that even our founders have tried to go around it, the alien ans sedation actwas mentioned s a violation of freedom of speech, so why would we want to scrap the thing protecting us from what we have a long history of being threanted with?

    • Rosemarie


      He’s living in a far left fairyland; he thinks everyone will respect everyone else out of the sheer goodness of their hearts. Meanwhile, people in the *real* world are growing more disrespectful and selfish all the time.

  • c matt

    Franklin or one of the other founding fathers commented that democracy, and the Constitution, were only suitable for a moral people. Even if such a people ever did exist, what made them think such a people would ever remain so for any extended period of time? History certainly did not support such a thought.

    There seems to be a natural life cycle to nations and civilizations:

    1. The struggle to survive phase (where virutes are learned – hopefully – not always, so one could get “stuck” here)

    2. The expansion and development phase (where the learned virtues are practiced and lead to advancement and prosperity)

    3. The fat and lazy phase (where the prosperity leads to lax practice of the virtues)

    4. The decline phase (where the lax practice eventually leads to loss of virtue and loss of prosperity)

    5. The collapse phase (where the societal capital built up during phase 2 is finally used up by phases 3 and 4)

    I’d say we are in phase 4, maybe 3. But we seem to be burning through our societal capital pretty quickly. One symptom of that is wanting to scrap the very structure that helped us build up our capital without much thought as to why.

    • Rosemarie


      We’ve been in phase 3 for a few decades. Now we are likely transitioning into phase 4 – unless we’re farther along into that than I think.

  • merkn

    Agree solidly with your point on the Constitution. But do not see by what stretch of the imagination we live in a militaristic society.