Our Constitution guarantees that each state of the union provide a republican form of government.
Does that mean that all that is prohibited is . . . monarchy?
One very common form of modern governance is deeply anti-republican, requiring — at the very least — strict regulation to prevent it from usurping our form of government. And what is this dangerous variety? The kind an economist defined centuries ago: “We have an illness in France which bids fair to play havoc with us; this illness is called bureaumania.” He called it “government by desk,” or, “bureaucratie.”
You might think I’m about to launch into another attack upon the Deep State, perhaps in relation to the ongoing coup-by-desk of the Trump Presidency.
But no. Let us turn to the other Washington, the one with the capital named Olympia.
In that hotbed of politics-as-usual, the city government printed out and mailed — on the public dime — a pamphlet entreating voters to vote against I-976, a state-wide initiative that had been advanced onto the ballot by Tim Eyman* and hundreds of thousands of voter signatures.
Even if it had been a broadside for the initiative this would have been very, very bad.
In republics, those who inhabit public desks must not be allowed to hijack election campaigns from those who are, ultimately, in charge: the citizens.
And in Washington State by law: RCW 42.17A.555 broadly and strictly prohibits using public resources for campaigning.
Apparently, public servants in the Evergreen State (as elsewhere) do not see that they themselves can corrupt our form of government.
Which makes this government-printed pamphlet a very serious breach of law indeed.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.
* You may remember me talking about Eyman before — often. I have called him the most effective limited-government activist in these United States. And it is from Eyman himself that I learned of this story.