Locke differentiates the various forms of government on the basis of where the people choose to place the power to make laws. The intellectual underpinnings of the modern study of law—scientific positivism—has established the foundation of all law school education based on of the authority of its technical rationality, which is seen as essential to the ongoing social progress of the modern state.
That proved compatible with the scientific or positivist understanding of law and interest group liberalism. At the same time, not being insurrectionists, we have decided, for a variety of good reasons, to act as ifTrump was the legitimate president, in at least this sense: we have accepted the very flawed process by which he has claimed his office, and have opposed him through the appropriate means made available by constitutional democracy: public criticism, dissent, protest, civil disobedience, and legitimate opposition through courts, legislatures, and elections.
For those who think this way, the universal homogenous state is understood to be historically inevitable. And who is to judge whether the government has abused its trust? Share this article.
This is a real problem for Trump — and for us! From my perspective the idea of resisting a democratically elected president and basically throwing everything at him and you know, really changing the norms on the grounds that we have to stop this president, that is where the shredding of our norms and our institutions is occurring.
Moreover, its intellectual authority made it possible to transform policy preferences into a moral defense of progressivism and the administrative state.
It was a position, and strategy, that could not but alienate him from both parties and the permanent government. It has established the intellectual and legal justification for allowing the other branches to ignore their constitutional role.
It is not surprising that Trump had few public intellectuals who could or would support his election as he framed it. But its very success produced a crisis of liberalism that threatened the progressive legacy established over much of the prior century.