Richard A. Epstein
- Title: How Progressives Rewrote the Constitution
- Author: Richard A. Epstein
- ISBN: 9781933995069
- Page: 492
- Format: Paperback
How Progressives Rewrote the Constitution explores the fundamental shift in political and economic thought of the Progressive Era and how the Supreme Court was used to transform the Constitution into one that reflected the ideas of their own time, while undermining America s founding principles Epstein examines key decisions to demonstrate how Progressives attacked much oHow Progressives Rewrote the Constitution explores the fundamental shift in political and economic thought of the Progressive Era and how the Supreme Court was used to transform the Constitution into one that reflected the ideas of their own time, while undermining America s founding principles Epstein examines key decisions to demonstrate how Progressives attacked much of the legal precedent and eventually weakened the Court s thinking concerning limited federal powers and the protection of individual rights Progressives on the Court undermined basic economic principles of freedom and competition, paving the way for the modern redistributive and regulatory state As Epstein writes, the Progressives, were determined that their vision of the managed economy should take precedent in all areas of life Although they purported to have great sophistication on economic and social matters, their understanding was primitive The Progressives and their modern defenders have to live with the stark truth that the noblest innovations of the Progressive Era were its greatest failures How Progressives Rewrote the Constitution shows that our modern constitutional law, fashioned largely by the New Deal Court in the late 1930s, has its roots in Progressivism, not in our country s founding principles, and how so many of those ideas, however discredited by recent economic thought, still shape the Court s decisions.
Recent Comments "How Progressives Rewrote the Constitution"
This elegant little volume is the result of a lecture given to the Cato Institute in 2004 by Richard Epstein, of which this is an extended version.Professor Epstein’s lecture was on the Progressive movement on which “I had long been critical on constitutional, economic and philosophical grounds.”This little gem offers his defense of the earlier opinions on many controversial topics, in which “the Old Court” supported economic liberties and held a limited view regarding federal power. G [...]
A succinct and well-done explanation of the shift in constitutional thought from the 1910s to the 1930s. Although presented as a brief of sorts for the old view of the Constitution, Epstein does not engage in screeds or purist laissez faire doctrine. In fact, Epstein is at pains to point out how much regulation could be done under the old view of the constitution. He showcases the very broad, mercantilist views behind the clause on interstate and foreign commerce, and celebrates Chief Justice Jo [...]
Interesting Quote:"If there is one jurisprudential lesson that should be learned from Kelo [v. City of New London], it is that the Progressive tradition continues to operate in its bankrupt fashion to the present day. The crushing defeat in Kelo is a disaster for the ordinary people who now stand to be thrown unceremoniously out of their homes. But, more than any academic writing could, it may expose the dangerous side of the big-government position that is the hallmark of Progressive thought." [...]
I started this book some time ago, but never finished it. Turns out you just about need to have a legal mind (i.e. legal training) to understand it. At least it seemed that way to me. There is a lot of discussion of obscure (to the layman) legal cases and precedents. I just ran out of steam. Maybe some other time
Well written summary of how progressive philosophy was implemented through Supreme Court decisions to dramatically alter the Constitution. Decisions have dramatically altered the interpretation of individual freedom vs state power, free markets vs state planning and direction, etc. Familiarity with the referenced court cases would definitely help.
A fairly good short read that talks about the constitution and the deliberate reinterpretation of it by the progressives and how activist judges on the Supreme Court have contributed to the erosion of liberties that were provided in the constitution to all Americans.
How Progressives Rewrote the Constitution by Richard A. Epstein (2007)
a short, and highly legalistic exploration of the Constitutional Revolution of '37, about which we do not learn in government schools.
I'm still not totally convinced.
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