Mandeville, LA – Exclusive Transcript – Think about this for just a moment. Madison is going to take Hamilton to task because Washington is not going to war, or is not going to act as an ally in a war. James Madison’s point is: Even when it comes to declaring neutrality, that’s still not a function of the executive, unless it’s a treaty to remain neutral. Then the executive can suggest it, but the Senate has to ratify it. Check out today’s transcript for the rest…
Begin Mike Church Show Transcript
Mike: There are a couple things we can bring into this conversation today. Let’s go back to 24 August 1793. [mocking] “Here he goes again with history. Here he goes again with bringing up the founders.” Yeah, here I go again. There was a debate that took place between Alexander Hamilton and James Madison. Hamilton wrote under the pen name Pacificus. Madison wrote under the pen name Helvidius. Check this out. If you want an interesting corollary here, think about this for a moment. Hamilton was making the case that President Washington had the authority to declare the United States neutral in our affairs with France, even though there was a treaty that was in place. This was a treaty that had come about as a result of France’s alliance with us during our war for independence. There was nothing that said the treaty had expired. There was a treaty in place and there was also the spirit of the treaty, which was when we needed boots, when we needed clothes, when we needed a navy and didn’t have one, the Frenchies were there. King Louis was there. He said: Yes, I will help you out, but you must dispatch with the United Kingdom, the Empire of Great Britain.
Washington was arguing in his neutrality statement: We understand that you Frenchies are getting ready to have your little war with the English and we’re not getting involved in it. Think about this for just a moment. Madison is going to take Hamilton to task because Washington is not going to war, or is not going to act as an ally in a war. James Madison’s point is: Even when it comes to declaring neutrality, that’s still not a function of the executive, unless it’s a treaty to remain neutral. Then the executive can suggest it, but the Senate has to ratify it. You have to take it to the Senate and it has to be ratified by the Senate. Again, it is left in the hands of — at that time the Senate served at the pleasure of the legislatures of the several states.
James Madison takes up the argument under the name Helvidius. If you wonder why they use pen names, for those of you that are not followers of the members of the founding generation, the reason I think they use pen names is that the actual work they were doing and what was contained in their pamphlet or editorial piece or in whatever manner this article may have been written or submitted, sometimes to a newspaper and other times to a legislative body, what they wanted to stand out was the work itself and not the author of the work. In other words, they didn’t want someone to think: You’ve got to give that extra weight because Washington said it or Madison said it or Patrick Henry said it or Luther Martin said it. They wanted the work to stand on its own. Many times these were sensitive subjects and they did not want — this is another intriguing thing. Some of these men did not want members of their state legislatures or of their political class at the time to know what their true opinion was because they had to work with these people. They also had to be elected to their stations. So Madison writes under Helvidius and Hamilton under Pacificus. Madison takes the point of view that President Washington cannot declare us to be neutral. He starts off in Helvidius No. 1:
For the rest of today’s transcript please sign up for a Founders Pass or if you’re already a member, make sure you are logged in!
Several pieces with the signature of PACIFICUS were lately published, which have been read with singular pleasure and applause, by the foreigners and degenerate citizens among us, who hate our republican government, and the French revolution; whilst the publication seems to have been too little regarded, or too much despised by the steady friends to both.
Mike Church Show Transcript – Someone Send Congress A Copy Of The Constitution Before Obama Starts Another War
Had the doctrines inculcated by the writer, with the natural consequences from them, been nakedly presented to the public, this treatment might have been proper. Their true character would then have struck every eye, and been rejected by the feelings of every heart. But they offer themselves to the reader in the dress of an elaborate dissertation; they are mingled with a few truths that may serve them as a passport to credulity; and they are introduced with professions of anxiety for the preservation of peace, for the welfare of the government, and for the respect due to the present head of the executive, that may prove a snare to patriotism.
Mike: Let’s stop right here. I have digital media files today from John Boehner saying that he is going to support the president and he thinks it’s his patriotic duty to support President Obama. If James Madison back in 1793 could say that it is not my patriotic duty to even support the father of the freaking country, the guy that’s on the money, Washington. I don’t have a patriotic duty to do that. As a matter of fact, I have a patriotic duty to do the opposite, to consider whether or not the father of the country is within the bounds of the Constitution that animates him and gives him his executive power to start with. I’m supposed to look at this objectively. I’m not supposed to look at it and say: Well, that’s Washington so I have to say yes. I won’t be a patriot if I say no.
Right here in the first paragraph we find a clear diversion from this fake patriotism that we hear people chortling on about today. I heard someone else yesterday say [mocking] “Out of a duty and a sense of patriotism, I have to support the president on this one.” No, you don’t! What kind of patriotism is that? If you know the nomenclature, the etymology of the term patriot, you would know that it’s from the Latin patriote, meaning homeland, home of the fathers. It’s about preserving and conserving the land of the fathers. It doesn’t have anything to do with falling on your sword because one of the fathers says you ought to.
End Mike Church Show Transcript