the conservative political tradition (5)"Edmund Burke, one of the most important figures in the history of conservatism..." --
Karl Rove, Speech to the New York Conservative Party
Wednesday, June 22, 2005
"As little genius and talent am I able to perceive in the plan of judicature formed by the national assembly. According to their inevitable course, the framers of your constitution have begun with the utter abolition of the [judicial] parliaments. These venerable bodies, like the rest of the old government, stood in need of reform, even though there should be no change made in the monarchy. They required several more alterations to adapt them to the system of a free constitution. But they had particulars in their constitution, and those not a few, which deserved approbation from the wise. They possessed one fundamental excellence; they were independent...They held for life. Indeed they may be said to have held by inheritance. Appointed by the monarch, they were considered as nearly out of his power. The most determined exertions of that authority against them only shewed their radical independence. They composed permanent bodies politic, constituted to resist arbitrary innovation; and from that corporate constitution, and from most of their forms, they were well calculated to afford both certainty and stability to the laws. They had been a safe asylum to secure these laws in all the revolutions of humour and opinion. They had saved the sacred deposit of the country during the reigns of arbitrary princes, and the struggles of arbitrary factions. They kept alive the memory and record of the constitution...
"Whatever is supreme in a state, ought to have, as much as possible, its judicial authority so constituted as not only to depend upon it, but in some sort of balance to it. It ought to give a security to its justice against its power. It ought to make its judicature, as it were, something exterior to the state." --
Edmund Burke, Reflections on the Revolution in France