… is from page 159 of my colleague Richard Wagner’s excellent intellectual biography of Jim Buchanan, James M. Buchanan and Liberal Political Economy (2017):
For Buchanan, maintenance of a constitutional framework required that post-constitutional actions be consistent with maintaining that framework. While maintenance of that framework is often attributed to law enforcement, it is impossible for any police department or attorney general to maintain a set of rules unless the bulk of the citizenry wants to see those rules maintained.
DBx: No amount of words on parchment will keep the state constitutionally limited if the general public tolerates violations of constitutional restraints. This reality is not diluted if those violations are camouflaged with verbal legerdemain as being consistent with constitutional restraints.