10 August 2012

More on the Messianic Presidency

Nicely timed to follow my squib on the 12th Amendment (check it out here), is a thoughtful piece by David T. Koyzis here. Koyzis correctly notes that the Founders (and, I hasten to add the ratifiers) never foresaw today's engorged political presidency and, again correctly, goes on to observe that the times, they certainly have 'a-changed, like it or not:
As the leader of a great power, a president must be able to respond quickly to both internal and external crises. The business of government is much greater than it was two centuries ago, requiring an office capable of supplying a central co-ordinating function.
Koyzis goes on to suggest a practical way to reduce the self-aggrandizing propaganda that accompanies presidential electoral politics: "curtail primary elections." Personally, I'm not sure how that would help and I'm certain it won't happen. Neither the media nor election roadies (consultants, pollsters, and the like) will let primaries turn into caucuses or state conventions.

Koyzis's final comment, however, rings true:
We can begin to bring more realistic expectations to this year’s presidential contest, demanding that candidates stop making promises they cannot keep and show how they would work with Congress to achieve those they can.
I think I can manage that.

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