Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login

> who has empowered the Government to actively manage economic cycles

The common good. Economic uncertainty, like political uncertainty, makes it hard for a society to plan, budget and invest.

A stable currency, low inflation, enforcement of property / contract law and political stability enable commercial activity.

Constant was a man of his time and the Reign of Terror - the despotic abuse of power - was a tragedy. How this is relavent to modern economic management and why Constant should be relevant today (he advocated a monarchical republic, a monarchy? today?) in such very different times would be interesting to hear.




> he advocated a monarchical republic, a monarchy? today?)

The US has become a "de facto" monarchical republic: the powers of Congress have been much diminished compared to what the Founding Fathers presumably had in mind, the Supreme Court actually acts like a monarch's Privy council (it's a non-elected entity and its members depend on the good-will of the so-called "president" to reach its ranks).

If Hillary had been elected the US would have continued the hereditary tradition which had started with the Bushes (or with Bob Kennedy, had he not been shot). There are lots of people on the Democratic-side of things who have lately suggested for Michelle Obama to run for presidency in 4 years' time. So I'd say Constant is still spot-on on lots of things (I've read a collection of Hannah Arendt's essays this summer and on lots of things she has just copied Constant's discourse. I'd say Hannah Arendt is pretty much part of today's conversation). So is Bentham, so is Burke, so is Thomas Paine.


No, it hasn't. It is nothing like that at all. You will have to provide much, much more evidence to support that if you wish to try and make that assertion.

And the Supreme Court was always an appointed position, even in the time of the Founding Fathers. Having judges be elected is a terrible, terrible idea.


But she wasn't. Russia is a de facto monarchy, the United States is a Republic in every way that matters.

The President's entire executive branch has been sent home without pay (yes, they got back pay eventually but contractors often didn't) a few years back by Congress. His appointee to the Supreme Court was blocked very effectively by that same body. His trade deal (TPP) is likely not going to be approved thanks again to Congress.

Also, while the justices need the President's help to get onto the bench, they do not need it in order to stay there. This is an important distinction.


> But she wasn't.

Only thanks to the US's Electoral College system, otherwise she would have been President. The matter of fact is that more Americans have voted for Hillary than for Trump.

And going back to the US President's powers, as far as I know the last few wars in which the US has been involved happened without the preliminary Congress approval. Starting a war without the Congress's/Parliament's approval is a royal prerogative since at least the Middle Ages.

> Russia is a de facto monarchy,

Russia is a light-ish dictatorship (people are not sent to the Gulag, yet) which might turn into a tyrant regime (assuming Putin keeps his power and goes crazier), I wouldn't call it a traditional monarchy.

> the United States is a Republic in every way that matters

The Roman Senate survived until at least 400CE (or around that time), meaning 4 and a half centuries after the "de facto" disappearance of the Roman Republic (even more if you go back to Sulla). Thus means that the fact that the US Congress is still around and from time to time likes to play contrarian games doesn't actually mean that the US Republic hasn't lost its original "status" (not an English native speaker, maybe I'm wrong on this word).

Otherwise I can't understand how Obamacare has stood up against the Republican Congress's will.

> His trade deal (TPP) is likely not going to be approved thanks again to Congress.

Had Trump been pro-TPP (or pro-foreign trade in general) I'm 99% sure TPP would have been voted in.


>Only thanks to the US's Electoral College system, otherwise she would have been President. The matter of fact is that more Americans have voted for Hillary than for Trump.

The popular vote is frankly irrelevant because no one was campaigning for it. It would be a totally different game, from the primaries through the general election, if the presidency was decided by popular vote. Republicans would campaign heavily in California and New York. Democrats would campaign heavily in Texas. Drawing any conclusions from the popular vote when it doesn't matter is futile.


> Otherwise I can't understand how Obamacare has stood up against the Republican Congress's will.

Google the word "filibuster" and you'll have your answer. The Republican Congress didn't have the votes to change policy, so they weren't able to. Whether they do now is actually a matter of some debate.

> Had Trump been pro-TPP (or pro-foreign trade in general) I'm 99% sure TPP would have been voted in.

I disagree, but that's beside the point. It would only get voted in if the Congress decided to do so. That's the crux of my argument; policy gets made by Congress and enforced by the President. Trade deals get negotiated by the President and then approved by the Congress. That's the design, and also how it actually functions.


And if not explicitly, at least implicitly. If you don't right the ship sooner, you don't get that second term.




Guidelines | FAQ | Support | API | Security | Lists | Bookmarklet | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact

Search: