In the preamble to the United States Constitution, the phrase “a more perfect union” is employed to describe the purpose for creating government. That phrase has at times been misconstrued and inappropriately applied.

Recall when then-candidate Obama used it is a speech in Philadelphia by that very name to steer free of his former pastor, Rev. Jeremiah Wright, who had “God-damned America.” Obama wanted to get past race-baiting and free himself from the shackles of language, which would have plagued his campaign. Ironically, such “damning” has come to embody his entire presidency.

But what is the real meaning of limited government? It should be defined as a “system in which legalized force is restricted through delegated and enumerated powers.” In other words, it is the exact opposite of what we have experienced over the last eight years.

This idea stems from classical liberalism, free (economic) markets and conservatism in the earliest days of the United States. Bound by the Constitution, it systematically maintains principles of action that are spelled out in that Constitution. In the U.S., this idea of limited government originated specifically in the notion of separation of powers and a system of checks and balances.

The Bill of Rights, in the Ninth and 10th Amendments, outline once and for all and in clear, unambiguous terms, what the principles of limited government implied. i.e., the enumerated rights of the people vs. the expressly delegated powers of the federal government.

Limited government, you see, stands in harsh contrast to the older doctrine of Divine Rights of Kings (or modern-day executives, presidents for life, dictators, klepocrats or the Clintons) where the king or executive alone holds unlimited sovereignty over his subjects.

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Eight centuries ago we saw the major milestone and turning point in Western civilization, the Magna Carta. It remains the exemplar of a doctrine limiting the reach of sovereignty. But it was only in 1787, and in the United States Constitution, that we witnessed a government limited by the terms of the written document itself, the election of legislators by the people, and balancing the three branches of government by each other’s powers.

In limited government, the power of government to intervene in the exercise of civil liberties is restricted by law. Government, by definition, cannot mandate equality through regulation of property and wealth redistribution. Reread the Federalist Papers, if in doubt. Madison, writing as Publius, made this case.

So the pertinent question today is: Does presidential candidate Donald Trump believe in and will he respect the tradition of limited government?

His words are as forthright as Madison’s and embody a resounding “yes.”

Trump is a strict constitutionalist and has no expectations to usurp power or to grow the government. To the contrary, he has said he will give more powers and redirect funding to the states and use checks and balances as they were originally conceived. He will limit both his own executive powers and ask Congress and the courts to do the same. In other words, power will be returned “to the people.” This is the kernel of Trump’s populism, and it is as basic as the Boston Tea Party or the shots fired in Lexington by farmer militiamen.

All said, Trump’s government will be smaller, more efficient, more frugal and use management principles and best practices, so as to be more excellent, i.e., we will actually get the services for which our hard-earned tax monies were contributed.

Under Trump, we will see limited government for the first time in 60 years.

Trump himself has said, “Common sense tell us that the two basic principles of governing should work anywhere they are applied. First: Get government out of activities it can’t do well. (A list of thing government doesn’t do well is a very long list.) Second: Get government back in the business of providing for public convenience (transportation, public works) and safety (police and firefighters), and make sure it does so efficiently. Then judge its efforts by visible, definable results and fine-tune, as needed.”

Remember Donald Trump has self-funded his presidential campaign, disavowed PACs (no one else has) and is the puppet of no one or special interest. He complains constantly about “government incompetence” and cronyism. He promises “great management” of the limited government we need. He would employ all the skills from the private sector and deliver. As an entrepreneur, a doer and a builder, he would allow every American to succeed, so as to make America great, again.

That narrative means limited government and maximum prosperity. Such a powerful combination would work to achieve what America’s founders intended.

Those Founding Fathers knew it wasn’t government that bestowed rights upon the American people. They firmly held that it was God who gave these rights to men, and as such they cannot be regulated, legislated or taken away by any man.

The founding was greatly influenced by the philosopher John Locke. Locke advocated government as a social contract. The term “will of the governed” summarizes this concept, and it was meant to show that the American people are the directors of those elected, not vice versa.

The power of the people is declared in the first three words of our Constitution, “We the People.” This principle is also the underlying basis for the Declaration of Independence, which is revealed in these words:

“Governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. That whenever any form of government becomes destructive to these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness.”

Trump would reinstitute limited government in America.

A fascinating, can’t-put-it-down memoir describing the power cabal from the inside, Theodore Roosevelt Malloch’s brand new book, “Davos, Aspen & Yale: My Life Behind the Elite Curtain as a Global Sherpa”

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