Happy Birthday, Jimmy!

Today is the birthday of our greatest Framer and the genius behind our Constitution: James Madison. He would have been 272 years old. We will be celebrating tonight with a traditional Virginia dinner (with the required Virginia ham), a three-layer cake, and Madison’s favorite dessert of ice cream (I recommend the tripartite Neapolitan).

James Madison, Jr. was born on March 16, 1751 at the Belle Gove Plantation in the colony of Virginia to James Madison Sr. and Nelly Conway Madison.

Despite being only 5’4” and barely above 100 pounds, Madison proved to be an intellectual giant who shaped constitutional theory for generations.

As a Madisonian scholar, today is a day of great celebration for the man who is most responsible for our constitutional system, not to mention the Bill of Rights and our 4th President. He was a brilliant writer whose contributions to The Federalist Papers still remain required reading for lawyers and laypersons alike, particularly Federalist No. 10 (on factions) and Federalist 51 (on the separation of powers).

This year, our table will be graced by the presence of my life-sized James Madison in addition to my plethora of Madison busts. As I have constantly reminded my concerned wife, one can never have enough Madison busts.

He died of congestive heart failure at Montpelier on the morning of June 28, 1836. He was 85 — an advanced age for the time. My favorite story from his death came from his niece who asked him, “What is the matter, Uncle James?” Madison simply responded “Nothing more than a change of mind, my dear.” He then promptly passed.

So enjoy the day and celebrate in true Madisonian fashion. There is no need to be moderate. Madison understood our failings and inclinations. After all,  “if men were angels, no government would be necessary. If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary.” Just  keep your friends checked and balanced.

While I expect Dolley would not be thrilled, here is a sultry send off for James Madison at 272 years young today:

Happy Birthday, Jimmy.



56 thoughts on “Happy Birthday, Jimmy!”

  1. “Knowledge will forever govern ignorance, and a people who mean to be their own governors, must arm themselves with the power knowledge gives. A popular government without popular information or the means of acquiring it, is but a prologue to a farce or a tragedy or perhaps both.”
    ~ James Madison

    I just can’t bring myself to call him “Jimmy” after words like that emanating from his pen. His was the finest mind of the Revolution and the Commonwealth with the possible exception of his neighbor — that sage a day’s ride away at Monticello. Thank you Mr. Madison for showing the way. Pity our efforts to follow in such large footsteps.

  2. “As I have constantly reminded my concerned wife, one can never have enough Madison busts.”

    Far better than bobble-heads! 😉

    1. Ha-ha! Love the picture! I had no idea there was a Madison bobblehead!

      I must say I really like the bust, though. And the cake looks delicious!

  3. Despite being only 5’4” and barely above 100 pounds, Madison proved to be an intellectual giant who shaped constitutional theory for generations.

    As if one has anything to do with the other.

    1. Ever work in corporate america? You will get NOWHERE unless you are over 6’4″ thin and a snappy dresser. Shorter people are cr&pped on constantly. I’m not short but i’ve seen this trend for decades. You could have the IQ of a cheese sandwich and make it in management as long as you fit the physical build.

    2. It was a writing style comparing small and giant. He never implied they were mutually exclusive. But your virtue-signaling for small people has been duly noted. 🙄

  4. Turley: you are such a huge phony. None of our founding fathers would approve of the way you use your credentials as a paid pundit for a media outlet that constantly lies to its gullible audience–peddling lies that even they don’t believe. None of them would approve of the way you ignore the big political stories to try to breathe life into fake political “scandals” like the “Hunter Biden Scandal”. They would especially disapprove of you failing to speak out against the Big Lie and the Big Liar or to condemn him for riling up Americans to the point of causing an insurrection. They would be appaled at the slates of fake “electors” who tried to help Trump cheat a second time, and would probably recommend that he be hanged for treason for trying to destroy the democracy they cherished. They would be scandalized at your defense of Bill Barr misrepresenting the findings of the Mueller Investigation. Our founding fathers never envisioned a loser like Trump being able to cheat his way into office with the help of Russian hackers who spread lies about his opponent, or trying to leverage aid to Ukraine in exchange for ginning up a fake scandal involving his opponent, or refusing to concede, or encouraging his fans to lynch the VP because the VP wouldn’t go along with the plot to try to steal the election. So, you go on pretending to be a “Constitutional scholar” with your phony-baloney busts and “Virginia” menu. You’re still just a big, fat phony.

    1. Gigi, Nothing you said is backed up by fact. You are spewing falsehoods with abandon. The Russia-Trump Hoax has already be disproven by Mueller. The “Hunter Biden Scandal” happens to have a grand jury behind it and has issued subpoenas. Soon you will see how that scandal reaches up into the White House. As far as “the Big Lie” and the “Big Liar”, Nancy Peloso has nothing to do with January 6th…yet. Her day is coming. But your head is so far up the democrat propaganda machine you dont even know what truth is anymore. Shame on you. You lack any kind of truth or understanding or desire to see it.

      1. Eric: you don’t know what the hell you’re talking about. Trump is the only “hoax”–a malignant narcissist who will do anything, everything for attention, power and adulation. It isn’t just the Mueller investigation that proved he cheated–a REPUBLICAN Senate Committee investigation confirmed it, as did lifelong Republican and former member of Congress, Dan Coats, appointed by Trump as head of US intelligence agencies. So, there’s a “grand jury investigation” of Hunter Biden–so what? WHAT has been proven, other than Hunter is a person with serious problems with immaturity and substance abuse. How does that implicate Joe Biden? Despite the fact that Mark Levin lies about there being a “Biden Crime Family”, there are NO facts to back up this lile. Trump is the Big Liar. How much proof that Trump validly lost will convince you? I already know the answer to that one–nothing will convince you, but here’s food for thought: 1. every poll predicted he would lose; 2. 60+ lawsuits were dismissed for lack of anything resembling proof of a “stolen election”; every time a judge asked Giuliani or Powell for proof, they had to admit they had none, but filed the lawsuit hoping to obtain some proof of their claims, which include the lies about Dominion Voting Systems tabulation machines being manipulated by people in Italy and/or Venezuela to flush Trump votes or add Biden votes–pure fantasy, and the object of a multi-billion-dollar lawsuit that uncovered the fact that Fox “hosts” don’t believe the crap they spew; but, that doesn’t faze you either; 3. there were recounts, re-recounts and forensic audits in swing states, all of which proved Biden DID win, just like every poll predicted he would; there were small irregularities, but no widespread voter fraud like Trump claims; 4. Trump began, even before Election day, claiming that the election was “rigged”, so virtually every state went to extra lengths to provide security, to check and double-check IDs and the vallidate the vote totals. YOU and your fellow gullibles are the ones who lack even common sense. Devotion to a chronic, habitual liar, someone who stole the US Presidency, someone who trashed our economy, alienated our EU and NATO allies, decimated our public health, started a trade war with China, lied about the seriousness of the pandemic because it made him look bad, who pushed for fake “cures” proven to be ineffective by medical science, and who fomented an insurrection because his ego wouldn’t allow him to accept the truth that he lost, is a sign of a serious lack of basic common sense if not something far worse.

        1. 65.9 Million for Barack Obama in 2012
          65.8 Million for Hillary Clinton in 2016
          81+ Million for Joe Biden in 2020?
          15 million more people voted for Joe Biden than Barack Obama!?
          Obama was filling up sports stadiums. Biden couldn’t fill up a McDonalds parking lot.
          Biden handily loses OH and FL.
          Biden wins 477 counties. Trump wins 2,497, including 18 of the 19 bellwether.
          House Republicans win all 27 of the highly-contested seats and flipped an additional 3 from D to R in CA!
          Donald Trump gained 11 million more votes in 2020 than 2016, but still “lost” states he won in 2016 – MI, PA, GA, AZ, and WI – by less than 300,000 combined?
          In order for Joe Biden to garner 81.2 million votes, every single Democrat voter (51.8M), over half of Independent voters (24.1M), and nearly 10% of registered Republicans (4M) would have had to cast a ballot for Joey and the Tramp on 03NOV2020.
          AND in order for Donald Trump to gain 11 million more votes in 2020 and still lose MI, PA, GA, AZ, and WI – by less than 300K total, he would have had to make MAJOR GAINS in blue states, which would have flipped at least ONE of them to red. This DID NOT HAPPEN.

          Good luck with your myocarditis and blood clots, 100% positive your vaxxed and boosted, get another just to be safe you know science…

          1. One great, big thing people like you overlook is the fact that lots of people who voted for Biden did so not as much because they loved him– it was because they hated Trump. Voter turnout set a record, and attendance at rallies has nothing to do with how many votes a candidate will get in a state or city. Most Americans saw Trump as not only lazy, stupid, and unaccomplished–but a clear and present danger to democracy as we know it. He trashed Obama’s successful economy, he alienated our allies, he only got one significant piece of legislation passed–a massive tax break that mostly benefitted the ultra-wealthy, he lied about fake “cures” for COVID, and his incompetence caused the US to be shut down for about 2 years, with kids unable to attend school in person, business and restaurants closed, people couldn’t take pleasure trips because it wasn’t safe, people who could, forced to work from home. All the while, Trump is waddling out in front of cameras, dominating CDC news conferences with his BS and misinformation like putting lights inside the body, Hydroxychloroquine and consuming bleach. The US fared much worse than other developed countries in terms of COVID infections and deaths, and it was due to Trump’s utter cluelessness as to what to do and his arrogant inability to defer to scientists. Trump did NOT make “major gains” at all. MOST Americans saw him for what he is–a pathetic, fat narcissistic loser, a racist, xenophobic, chronic liar–someone with a pathological need for attention and adulation. Your analysis is seriously flawed. EVERY single poll predicted he would lose, including Fox (fake) News polls. Just HOW many recounts, re-recounts and audits were conducted in swing states? Did they turn up anything that proved Trump could even have come close to winning? No. And, 26 Secretaries of State who certified Biden’s victory were Republican.

          1. What medication can change the fact that 1. Trump trashed our economy by starting a trade war with China, causing a shortage of computer chips and consumer goods, which has helped push inflation; 2. lied repeatedly about the seriousness of COVID–deliberately. Read Bob Woodward’s book “Rage”, in which he ADMITTED he deliberately lied and downplayed the seriousness of COVID because it made him look bad; 3. trashed our relations with our EU and NATO allies, promising Putin that if he got back into office, he’d pull the US out of NATO, which Putin wanted because Putin wants to retake all of the former Soviet Union countries, starting with Ukraine;; 4. how about siding with Putin over Dan Coats, head of all US intelligence agencies, lobbied to get Russia back into the G-7, and praised Putin as “genius” and “savvy” for invading Ukraine; what American President has ever done something like this? Ask yourself why–then look at the facts about Trump’s indebtedness, his 6 bankruptcies and the answer will become clear; 5. called migrants “animals, vermin, murderers and rapists”; 6. praised White Supremacists and “good people”; 7. lied about losing a “landslide” election due to the election being “rigged” without any proof; 8. drew down our troops in Afghanistan from 14,000 to 2,500 and cut a deal with the Taliban to release 5,000 of their members and failed to arrange for any air or land base, all without involving our Afghan allies. The list literally goes on and on. These are all PROVABLE FACTS.

            If anyone is “deranged” about that thing called “Trump”, it’s people like you who are literally immune to the truth.

            1. Gigi – your list contains half-truths and no-truths.
              1) The economy. The economy grew under Trump and inflation was low.
              2) Lied about COVID. Exactly where and when? The seriousnes of COVID was evident from the beginning. Trump let Fauci and the CDC run the national response to the disease. He did not interfere with their actions, even though he probably should have. HIs instincts that our covid-response was “over the top” has proved correct.
              3) This is almost a blood libel. Where and when did Trump promise Putin we would withdraw from NATO? If he wanted to so, it would have been impossible without the concurrence of Congress. NATO is a treaty, and thus law. It cannot be nullified by any adminstration unilaterally.
              4) This is just more Russian collusion nonsense. Trump has occasionally expressed admiration for Putin in some regards, and he is entitled to his opinion.
              (In one speech, Winston Churchill expressed admiration for Hitler: “I have always said that if Great Britain were defeated in war I hoped we should find a Hitler to lead us back to our rightful position among the nations.” https://richardlangworth.com/did-churchill-praise-hitler ). In some ways, as I noted in a previous post, Putin is a shrewd critic of the left-sickness that besets the Western world. But Trump gave no aid to Putin, and in fact delivered aid to Ukraine. By contrast, the Roosevelt adminstration actually saved the Soviet Union, the most murderous regime in human history, from destruction in WWII. As a good Democrat, you would probably have applauded.
              5) Insults to migrants. First of all, the people flowing over our Southern border are not “migrants”, they are invaders. Second, Trump never said that ALL of these people are “animals, vermin, murderers and rapists.” In fact, however, many of these invaders are related to criminal gangs. Deadly drugs like Fentanyl are flowing over our border in prodigious amounts, bringing death to a 1000 Americans per month. You and your fellow Demo’s don’t give a rat’s backside for any of them.
              6) White Supremacists. I assume you are referring to a comment of Trump made about rioting in Charlotteville NC. The acccustation that he praised white supremacists, has been made frequently by Democrats, including Joe Biden, FactCheck has this to say:
              “Trump drew criticism for his condemnation of “hatred, bigotry and violence on many sides” after a rally organized by a white nationalist in Charlottesville in 2017, and for saying there were “very fine people on both sides.” But, contrary to Biden’s claim, the president twice specifically condemned white supremacists and neo-Nazis, and he has repeated that condemnation since.”
              7) Lied about losing 2020 election. There are grounds for challenging the fairness of the 2020 Presidential elections: 1) illegal changes in election laws (e.g. Pennsylvania, Georgia) during the election campaign; 2) private money flowing to Democratic election officials in Wisconsin and Arizona; 3) milliions of mail-in ballots that I suspect were never adequately examined; 4) pressure placed on election officials to green-light dubious signatures on mail-in ballots (Michigan); 5) vote gatherers who did not adhere to the law in dumping off bags of ballots (see “2000 Mules”); 6) suppression of the Tara Reade story; 7) suppression of the Hunter Biden investigation by the FBI; 8) supression of the Hunter Biden laptop story by the MSN and social media. If all these dishonest fixes had been removed from the system, it is likely that Trump actually would have won. At least it is arguable.
              8) Draw down of troops in Afghanistan. This was necessary. We had occupied the country for no good reason for almost twenty years. Do you think we should have gone on doing so? The debacle of our withdrawal, which probably did influence Putin to invade Ukraine, lies wholly at the feet of Biden, as even some Democrats admit.

              1. There is simply no reasoning with someone who is a member of a cult, like you are. You cannot hear facts. You won’t believe the truth. 1. the economy went into recession under Trump, and it IS his fault because he has NO leadership abilities–the economy began slowing down long before COVID struck, and the trade war he started when he couldn’t bully China is one reason. 2. Read Woodward’s book “Rage”, in which he quoted from TAPED interviews with Trump, in which he admitted lying about COVID. Some examples: “it’s just one person coming from China” “15 cases will soon be 0 cases” “you’ll be back in church for Easter” “it’s no worse than the flu” (actually COVID is 10Xs more deadly, and Trump knew it). Over 1 million Americans died of COVID, and several hundred still get it every day. 3. Trump, just yesterday, pledged to pull the US out of NATO and to redesign it, or some such language. WHY do you think Trump is anti-NATO? In the first place, one of the generals in the administration had to actually school Trump on what NATO is, how it came about, and the role it plays in preventing another world war because Trump is just plain ignorant about history and government. Trump DID praise Putin at Helsinki, he DID try to bully the G-7 allies to take Russia back, and he DID side with Putin over Dan Coats, his own appointee, publicly. Putin is a vicious murderer who hunts down and poisons critics. Trump yearns to be a dictator like Putin and MBS–under Trump’s watch, MBS murdered and dismembered Jamaal Khashoggi, a US-based journalist, and Trump did absolutely nothing about it–didn’t even criticize him. Khashoggi was lured to an embassy to get copies of divorce papers so he could get remarried to a US citizen, and they were waiting for him.. In fact, Jared is involved in business dealings with MBS because he, too, has to borrow money to keep his businesses afloat because he, too, is a lousy businessman. Kellyanne came up with the idea of back-pedaling after Trump praised White Supremacists, but it won’t fly. We heard the original statement–he DID praise them. Later efforts to try to take it back, criticize them after the fact and/or explain it away won’t work. Then, there’s the fact that he told the Proud Boys to “stand down and stand by”, which they literally did, until Jan 6th. Poor people from south of the border are not “invaders”. They don’t have weapons. they don’t come here to take over the government and they come here for work. What are Republicans doing about it? Nothing, because big business makes more profit from hiring them because they’ll accept less than minimum wage, they’ll work in unsafe conditions, they don’t have to pay overtime, they don’t make workers compensation or sexual harassment claims, and they don’t demand benefits. But, Republicans do use migrants politically. Such hypocrisy!

                You keep trying to legitimize Trump’s Big Lie–that won’t fly, either. He began BEFORE Election Day strategizing on how he could cheat his way into office a second time because every single poll showed Americans would vote him out, our economy was in recession, our public health was a hot mess, businesses and schools were closed, and the US was setting new daily records for deaths and acute infections. Our public health was much worse than comparable developed countires. Trump tried to discredit medical scientists because they wouldn’t support his lies about fake cures, and so people began fearing and refusing vaccination, which millions of doses prove is both safe and effective in preventing hospitalizations and deaths. All of the BS you cite as alleged “proof” of a “stolen landslide victory” are lies–all have been disproven; specifically, 2,000 mules has been thoroughly discredited. As Snoop Dogg would say: “you better ask someone”.

                Republicans are trying to score political points on the messy withdrawal from Afghanistan, which is entirely Trump’s fault for drawing down our troops first, releasing the Taliban and failing to arrange for any air or land base, all while not involving our Afghan allies. This is the mess Biden inherited. Putin always intended to invade Ukraine, and was hoping that Trump’s insults to NATO and EU allies weakened our alliances to the point that our allies and the US wouldn’t be able to get along well enough to mount an effective defense. He was wrong. Biden has mended these rifts. And, where the hell do you get off trying to speak for what’s in Putin’s mind, anyway? The fact that Trump and certain Republicans are speaking favorably about a murderer like Putin is truly shocking, and just as shocking is the fact that fools like you go along with it.

        2. “Ordinarily he was insane, but he had lucid moments when he was merely stupid.”
          – Heinrich Heine
          Well, Gigi, I see you are having a lucid moment.

        3. Gigi – you blame Trump for not accepting his defeat in 2020, but then in the middle of your rheorical goulash you say Trump is “someone who stole the US Presidency.” Do you not recognize the irony of your comment? Like all Democrats, including Gore, Kerry and Clinton, you think that any election you lose is “stolen” in some way (Florida buttlerfly ballots, Ohio voting machines, Wikileaks, Comey, Russia), but when a Republican makes such a claim, you shout “insurrection”.

          1. Trump cheated in 2016 by using the help of Russian hackers to spread lies about Hillary Clinton strategically directed by insider polling information in swing states where support for her was soft enough that it could sway the Electoral College. It worked in 2016–he LOST the popular vote but won the Electoral College. In 2020, he tried everything he could come up with to defeat the will of the American people again because all polls predicted he would lose. He started claiming “rigged election” even before Election Day. He declared victory in the wee hours after Election Day, even though all of the ballots hadn’t been counted, but it was clear he had lost. He immediately declared there was “fraud” without any proof, and then tried to drum up some proof after the fact, but that failed. There were multiple recounts, re-recounts and audits that proved Biden won, fair and square. He bullied Georgia Election Officials and the Secretary of State to “find” him 11,780 votes “which is one more than we have” (itself an admission that he knew he lost), and to convene the Ga. Legislture to throw out the votes and appoint slates of electors to award him Georgia’s electoral votes, which they refused to do. This conduct is the subject of grand jury investigations that should result in criminal charges. He tried to bully Pence into refusing to accept the certified election vote totals, something he had no authority to do, and when that failed, he went on “Stop the Steal” campaign rallies to get his fans to come to Washington on Jan 6th, promising it would be “wild”. He told his fans to “fight like hell or you’re not going to have a country any more”. He stirred up his fans to hunt down Mike Pence, which they did, erecting a gallows with a noose, chanting “Hang Mike Pence”, and they forced their way past Capitol Police barriers, broke windows, bashed in doors and invaded the Capitol, trying to prevent Biden’s victory from being certified. They had planned this invasion in advance; they had weapons stored across the Potomac in a hotel room, waiting for the signal from Trump to invade and take over Congress. Only, their hero was a no-show. Yet, he watched the carnage unfold on television, basking in the glory of his power, all while the VP’s life was in danger because of the lies he spread. After more than 3 hours, he finally called off the mob, told them they were “special” and that he “loved” them. If this isn’t sick, I don’t know what qualifies. There were also 60+ failed lawsuits, and now his lawyers are facing disbarment for lying to federal courts. He still can’t stop lying about the fact that he lost. And, he still has people like you who refuse to aceept the truth–not just about the election results–but about just how morally and ethically defective and unfit for the presidency Trump is.

            Trump didni’t just fail to “accept his defeat in 2020”–he tried to steal the US Presidency by the conduct listed above, and there are still people like you that don’t see how dangerous this is to our fragile democracy. It’s far more serious than just being disappointed over the results of an election– it’s deliberate criminal conduct calculated to defeat the will of the American people as to our right to choose our leader, even if it involves violence, and it runs counter to the bedrock principles upon which America was founded.

        1. NUTCHACHACHA, did you read that?

          “A brain dead troll,” Sissy wrote.

          And that was a compliment.

      2. Lol
        What’s that old saying I’m looking for?
        It’s on the tip of my tongue
        Oh, that’s right,
        NEVER FEED MARXIST VERMIN TROLLS. just makes them more hungry HAHAHAHA

    2. The “fake Hunter Biden” scandal…that’s a good one! Almost as good as the “fake Birther” scandal and “fake Steele Dossier “ both courtesy of Hillary Bleach bit Clinton with an assist from Phillip Berg. You’re killing me… got anymore? You can’t really be that oblivious can you? Your hatred for President Trump appears to shadow any logical conclusion to any of the volumes of evidence presented. Good luck and seek some therapy, and leave TURLEY be.

  5. Enjoy your Birthday feast….and do share where you can find a Virginia ham product not owned by China….

  6. Genius:

    “[Private property is] that dominion which one man claims and exercises over the external things of the world, in exclusion of every other individual.”

    – James Madison

    The Thing Itself Speaks

    The 5th Amendment right to private property is absolute having provided the sole qualification itself, that being “taking” property for public use, excluding any and all others.

    “In one word, you reproach us with intending to do away with your property. Precisely so: that is just what we intend.”

    – Karl Marx

  7. They expected us to be as intelligent as they were.
    Absolute proof they were what conservatives are today.
    Now it’s obvious they should have written our highest law like they were talking to a five year old.

  8. Dear Prof Turley,

    I had no idea you were such a Madisonian! .. . I’ve known good ones and bad ones.

    mental note to self. check out Federalist #10 (factions).

    *remember, all things in moderation .. .

  9. If we had decent, informed and conscientious schools we would be teaching this man’s writings instead of that partisan hack Nikole Hannah-Jones. If we are that lazy, lost. or uninformed as to see what is happening; perhaps we deserve what is coming.

  10. I would add another of the many accomplishments: setting the executive leadership practice of sitting at the middle place at the table, not at the head, the better to hear the comments of all invited.

  11. For over 200 years, the United States Constitution was the foundation of the most free, most advanced, and most prosperous nation on earth. Shamefully, thousands of today’s American politicians, at all levels, have brazenly chosen to ignore the Constitution or read non-existent content into it. I pray they soon will be defeated at the ballot box and begin to rue the day they decided to take that path.

    1. dwmographically, that hope is dwindling with every illegal crossing our border. We have little time left to reverse this.

      1. “But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.”

        – Declaration of Independence, 1776

  12. Looks like salads for you for the rest of the week.
    As far as James Madison is concerned he is probably the most unappreciated president, especially with all that he accomplished. A brilliant man who graced this country with his service.
    Thumbs up on the Ham. Just nothing like a great ham, brown sugar glaze especially. Then ham sandwiches for days after.

  13. A life-sized James Madison. Kinky. Just kidding. Is he out all the time or in storage until his birthday once a year?

      1. Started the marine corp, drafted the order and signed it, and at one time fought along side marines on a naval ship

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