December 30, 2009

Three Cheers for the Filibuster!

John Stossel wants to expand it to the House.

I'll have to think about that one, but he presents a nice defense of the procedure that every majority party learns to hate:

On any given day, what is Congress more likely to do: violate or expand liberty? As nineteenth-century New York Judge Gideon Tucker put it, “No man’s life, liberty or property are safe while the legislature is in session.”

Libertarian science-fiction writer Robert Heinlein had a good idea. One of his novels depicted a bicameral legislature with one chamber needing a supermajority to pass laws and the other needing only a minority of votes to repeal them.

By the standard of protecting freedom and keeping government caged, that’s not a bad idea. It should be easier to repeal laws than to pass them.


111th Congress Posted by John Kranz at December 30, 2009 12:34 PM

Bravo to Stossel for looking to "The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress" for government reform ideas.

But this quote shouldn't go without repeating:

There is no greater threat to individual freedom and autonomy than government. The threat from private freelance crime is small potatoes compared to the daily usurpations of the state, with its taxation, regulation, privilege-granting, inflation and war.

The first line, by itself, deserves commitment to memory.

Posted by: johngalt at December 30, 2009 3:10 PM | What do you think? [1]