Carl Douglas’ The Baltimore Principles explores all of the pervading questions in America today, uncovering the answers to questions concerning how American citizens lost their power, how the centralized government became so powerful, and how special interest groups have essentially hijacked the power of our government for their own exploitation and use. While the politician who is emblematic of the phrase “abuse of power” varies from American to American, there are myriad examples of those who suffer from Robespierre Syndrome, ensuring that the interests of the few are protected, while the voices of the many are drowned out.
No matter what political party to which we may belong, one thing can be agreed upon among all Americans: our voices are not being heard and our interests are not being represented. While America is fundamentally bound to allowing us to voice our opinions, they are not being respected or heard, a mere polite formality as the lawmakers forge on with their intended plans, regardless of the people who they ostensibly represent.
This, Douglas asserts, can largely be attributed to the breakdown of basic Constitutional principles, founded on the ideology of Lord Baltimore, hence, what he has coined “The Baltimore Principles.” We have all been familiarized with the system of horizontal checks and balances that exists among the legislative, judicial, and executive branches of government; however, we have completely lost the vertical system of checks and balances outlined by Baltimore’s principles. The bicameral system still exists; however, it is no longer composed of the lower house, which represents the interests of the citizens in a region, and the upper house representing the governments directly below them-rather we redundantly have “two houses made up of the same kind of representation elected by the same people.”
He stresses that the Baltimore Principle provides not only for horizontal checks and balances, but also the “much needed” vertical checks and balances “because we have lost this one, no community government has a voice in their county government, no county government has a voice in their state government, and no state government has a voice in our federal government.” Instead, we have four levels of governments operating independently and “any cooperation is either voluntary or imposed from the top down, rather than from the bottom up,” which has allowed our governmental bodies to be “controlled by self-interest groups.” We have lost the accountability of upper levels of government to the level beneath them, the “missing key” to limiting the powers granted to each level of government, leaving us “held hostage” to “our elected politicians and their respective parties,” the root of “most of our nation’s problems.”
The Baltimore Principles proposes the necessity of restoring order, putting power back into the hands of the people and politicians back in touch with their constituents; “Power would be granted from the bottom up to the lowest level of government possible to get a job done. no votes would ever be cast on the floor of the US Senate without the consent and approval of the majority of City Councils from across the nation.” This work calls attention to the need for very significant reform of our entire political system, helping America to see how we were led astray and how to return to a path in which we are represented and our voices are heard.
Find out more about The Baltimore Principles by visiting www.baltimoreprinciples.com