Here is a brief selection of teasers from the current interview of Judge Napolitano by Anthony Wile of The Daily Bell. Please enjoy this tremendous interview at The Daily Bell’s website, where you’ll find lots of embedded links. URL for this interview -
Introduction: Judge Andrew P. Napolitano joined the FOX News Channel (FNC) in January 1998 and serves as its senior judicial analyst. Judge Napolitano is the youngest life-tenured Superior Court judge in the history of the state of New Jersey. While on the bench from 1987 to 1995, Judge Napolitano presided over more than 150 jury trials and sat in all parts of the Superior Court – criminal, civil, equity and family. He has handled thousands of sentencings, motions, hearings and divorces. For 11 years, he served as an adjunct professor of constitutional law at Seton Hall Law School, where he provided instruction in constitutional law and jurisprudence. Judge Napolitano returned to private law practice in 1995 and began television broadcasting in the same year. Judge Napolitano’s many books include: It is Dangerous to be Right When the Government is Wrong: The Case for Personal Freedom (2011), Constitutional Chaos: What Happens When the Government Breaks Its Own Laws (2006), A Nation of Sheep (2007) and NY Times bestsellers The Constitution in Exile: How the Federal Government Has Seized Power by Rewriting the Supreme Law of the Land (2007) and Lies the Government Told You: Myth, Power and Deception in American History (2010).
Daily Bell: Let’s get started. What about the Rand Paul controversy? Where do you stand on his endorsement of Romney?
Judge Napolitano: Rand Paul is a friend of mine but yes, that endorsement certainly got him slaughtered on his Facebook page; they were running 50:1 against him. My whole view – and I’ve said this on air – Mitt Romney’s views are closer to Barack Obama’s than they are to Thomas Jefferson’s and he presents just a slightly different version of big government. In fact, in the defense policy he might actually be worse than the President because he seems to be itching to start a war with Iran. In terms of domestic policy, he contemplates additional borrowing, maybe a little less than the President has borrowed. If the President is re-elected he might bring us to $20 trillion in debt by 2016; Romney might bring us to $18 trillion in debt by 2016. Either of those federal debts would be unsustainable.
Daily Bell: Is America currently under a state of emergency and legally led only by the president?
Judge Napolitano: I think we are a police state. I think we are a national security state. I think the government pays lip service to the Constitution and basically does whatever it wants to do. When the Congress let the President decide that he can kill people on his own and he can start wars on his own – he once threatened to borrow money on his own – when the Congress permits that to happen, this is close to being a dictator. For the most part, Congress is a potted plant while the president, whether it’s George W. Bush or Barack Obama, is allowed to do virtually whatever he can get away with. Frequently, the courts are reluctant to restrain him. It’s a deplorable state of affairs in which we are on the precipice of a cliff. The true TV commercial should not be granny going over the cliff; it’s all of us going over the cliff with the federal government pushing the wheel chair behind us.
Daily Bell: Why did we move from private law to “public” socialized law?
Judge Napolitano: Oh, my goodness, because people were bought off by the federal government. Why did FDR and LBJ create their massive establishments in order to create entitlements and in order to create dependence on the Democratic Party? People accepted the giveaways in return for the loss of freedom. Jefferson and Hamilton rarely agreed on anything but one thing they did agree on is when the public treasury becomes a public trough and the public learns this, it will send to the government people who will bring home the larger piece of the pie. That has happened, beginning in the Progressive Era and heightened in the FDR years, and heightened yet again when Republicans fell in line. They previously resisted the entitlement state; now they fall in line with it. That has produced a country in which half of the population receives a salary or material goods from the government, paid for by the other half. That also cannot survive in the context of freedom for very long.
Daily Bell: Give us a quick summation and your thoughts on the election this year.
Judge Napolitano: I have harshly criticized Paul Ryan for having voted to offer the president to raise the debt ceiling; I have also criticized him for his support of the Patriot Act and its extensions and the National Defense Authorization Act. He is a classic George Bush Republican who does not believe that the Constitution means what it says. I was heartened to hear him quote me the other day when he said ‘our rights come from our humanity,’ which is a gift from God, and they don’t come from the government. But unfortunately, he lied by his vote to take our rights in the legislation that I have just articulated.
On the other hand, I don’t think his designation by Governor Romney has succeeded in getting capital and getting the Governor’s taxes off the front page, and has zeroed the media focus on what should be an essential aspect of this election. That is who would be a better steward of the economy. I say steward because they both want to be steward of the economy. To me, the steward of the economy should be the people who participate in it and not the government. It should be the free choices of entrepreneurs and consumers; they shouldn’t need the hand of the government.
Having said that, I disagree with the fundamental premise of both of their campaigns. Now, the President believes that government is there for people who can’t do what they should do for themselves. Governor Romney wants to make government more efficient. I don’t want to make it more efficient; I want most of it to go away. I’m sure I would be a challenger of much of what a President Romney would do – and I know that I sometimes get in trouble when I use the Romney/Jefferson comparison but I don’t think that’s an opinion; I think it’s a truism. His views are much closer to Obama than they are to Jefferson.
Daily Bell: Not much difference between the two of them would you say?
Judge Napolitano: Well, no, but that’s the society we’ve created. We really don’t have two political parties anymore. We have one big government party, with a democratic wing that likes war and taxes and individual welfare and staying in power, and a republican wing that likes war and deficits and corporate welfare and staying in power. There is very little difference between them. I mean, Ron Paul and Gary Johnson are so different from the mainstream Republicans and the mainstream Democrats; they really present the only alternative. It’s basically a choice between Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum.
I understand the animosity towards the president, I understand the fear he instills in those who embrace traditional values, I understand the anybody-but-Obama. I understand the argument of those who say at least Mitt Romney is a step in the right direction. My own view is that those who are afraid of big government under President Obama will be equally as afraid of it under a President Romney.
Read entire interview <here>
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