Indeed, what we see with Perry is far more than mistrust — he actually denies most federal institutions their existential legitimacy, and has written a book explaining at length how everything from Social Security to federal bank regulation is in fact unconstitutional.

via The global crisis of institutional legitimacy | Felix Salmon.

A recent trend in the presidential election season is to not only to question the effectiveness of the current presidential administration, but to question the very legitimacy of the presidency itself.  Candidates like Rick Perry, exacerbated by movements like the Tea Party, have begun float the idea that many of the governmental institutions that citizens interact with on a daily basis violate the foundations of government envisioned by the framers over 200 years ago.

Do you believe that Americans are suffering from the same crisis of confidence as advanced by these candidates?  Do most Americans see the institutions of government as being not only ineffective, but also unconstitutional?  And if the answer is a resounding yes, how is this belief system likely to affect government’s ability to be effective in situations such as the clean-up following Hurricane Irene?