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Date: Sun, 6 Dec 1998 13:24:49 -0600 (CST)
From: The Golem <odin@atlantic.net>
Article: 49263
To: undisclosed-recipients:;
Message-ID: <bulk.6243.19981207121537@chumbly.math.missouri.edu>

The Constitution: A document of, by, and for the rich for control of the laws by which a government operates

By The Golem, 7 December 1998

Charles Beard in AN ECONOMIC INTERPRETATION OF THE CONSTITUTION, MacMillan 1936) wrote: Inasmuch as the primary object of a government, beyond the mere repression of physical violence, is the making of the rules which determine the property relations of members of society, the dominant classes whose rights are thus to be determined must perforce obtain from the government such rules as are consonant with the larger interests necessary to the continuance of their economic processes, or they must themselves control the organs of the government. The founders of Amerikkka knew full well they had to control the government directly or control the laws and that was what was in the minds of those 55 men (women were also disenfranchised) of wealth, who gathered in Philadelphia in 1787 to draw up the Constitution.

Though the people had to be checked, Madison wrote in his Federalist Papers, men of substance and property, did not have to be checked because they had investments and would therefore somehow be better citizens because they had their investments to protect and that was the naivete of James Madison and the other founding fathers.

And, wealthy men of substance move their investments wherever it profits them and in so doing are destroying this republic that Madison and others established to protect these same men of substance.

Those upper classes, to rule, needed to make concessions to the middle class, without damage to their own wealth or power, at the expense of slaves, Indians, and poor whites. This brought loyalty. And to bind that loyalty with something more powerful than even material advantage, the ruling group found in the 1760s a wonderfully useful device. That device was the language of LIBERTY and EQUALITY, which could unite just enough whites to fight a Revolution against England, without ending either slavery or inequality. (A PEOPLE’S HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES, by Howard Zinn)

That was the stage for class struggle in the United States, a struggle of survival for poor people in order to maintain an elite privileged class in power and riches. Zinn points out that the Declaration of Independence, like John Locke’s SECOND TREATISE ON GOVERNMENT, talked about government and political rights, but ignored the existing inequalities in property. And how could people truly have equal rights, with stark differences in wealth?

Zinn wrote that the characteristic of the new nation: finding itself possessed of enormous wealth, it could create the richest ruling class in history, and still have enough for the middle classes to act as a buffer between the rich and the dispossessed....

In OUT OF OUR PAST, Carl Degler writes, The men who engineered the revolt were largely members of the colonial ruling class. George Washington was the richest person in America and John Hancock, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson were all very rich men.

Charles Beard also noted that four groups were not with representation at the Constitutional Convention: those without property, slaves, indentured servants and women, and thus the Constitution did not really reflect the intersts of the disenfranchised. The Constitution WAS WRITTEN FOR THE BENEFIT OF THE WEALTHY. Qualifications for voting at state levels required in most cases the owning of property and excluded women, Indians and slaves and there were no popular elections to higher office. The Constitution only ensured this greater permanent division of society into a rich ruling class and poor working class.

Another interesting point is made by Robert E. Brown that the phrase life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, although it appears in the Declaration of Independence, was altered to appear in the Constitution as life, liberty, and property.

We don’t need anymore lies about the Constitution. The Constitution was written for the rich. What this country needs is change and creative new institutions and an _honest_ president who stands for the interest of all the people, not the special class interests of the rich.

We desperately need a clean environment, affordable housing, decent mass transportation. The nation needs sanity and to vigorously move away from the conspiratorical hypocracy that rules. We need democracy for all the people and, We don’t have it, not enough of it and we aim to get it and that’s human nature—-or to put it in another way in the nature of our humanity, to insist on decency, peace, and social justice. [Michael Parenti/DEMOCRACY FOR THE FEW]