When the United States was just a gleam in the Founding Fathers' eyes, there had already been a generation or so of discussion about the way the then-colonies should be governed. A lot of discussion but little agreement. What they more-or-less agreed on was not what they were FOR but what they were AGAINST. Look at the Declaration of Independence. It is mostly a litany of the harms inflicted by the king and his agents. The debate of the time (see Federalist Papers) centers on how to avoid the significant harms visible through history and in their own time.
Here's the question: how do you constitute a way of government that avoids the harms (see Declaration) while making sure that you "... establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty ..." ?
Well, at some point you have to stop arguing and start making. I know they call it Political Science at our failing universities, but it ain't Science. It's Art. In fact it's Theater. Specifically, it's Devised Theater.
Wikipedia says: "It is very hard to pin down exact methods for devising, as every group of collaborators will have different ways of approaching the creative process. One very common method is to begin by focusing on form, and then extract thematic ideas and work with them retrospectively." (emphasis added)
Well hot Wiki damn, whaddya think the original Americans did? They got all focused on the form of the government. What the Constitution constitutes is the form. Aside: What was the world before God spoke in Genesis chapter 1? Anybody? That's right, a formless void. Anarchy of potential. The world came into being as God spoke and set limits. Earth, meet Sky. And it was good. Back downstage: America came into being as the words of the Constitution attempted to set limits on government. The Founders believed in freedom. (God does too, by the way, He even risks losing you to wrong application of your freedom.) The American experiment devised a system by which the governed also do the governing: limited self-government!
Devised Theater came about because some theatrical experimenters believed that the actor (Wikipedia again) is "... a creative artist in their own right, as opposed to a functional worker there to carry out the wishes of the writer and director ..." See what I'm thinking? In America, a free person is an agent of his own destiny, working with others, within limits. We're living Devised Theater. America. The biggest show on or off Broadway since the 18th Century, and it's not top-down, it's Devised.
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