Thursday, March 03, 2011

A Government by Constitution or by Ideology, Which is Your Choice? (Part 3)

As grandpa looked at the person that shouted out the question he responded to him with these words.

“ My good friend, take a moment to ponder over the significance of an amendment such as this.

1. This amendment by itself will force each Supreme Justices to view the Constitution from a singular mindset in terms of federal powers versus State powers in the manner as illustrated in this post, The Preamble to the Constitution of the United States  and this post, The Preamble to the Constitution of the United States (Part III).  This in itself should produce far better decisions on the part of the Supreme Court. In fact I'll predict that it will result in many more decisions that were unanimous decisions rather than the biased 5-4 decisions which is known to be influenced by the divided interpretation of the Constitution now. And since they would be hearing cases that were primarily dealing with domestic issues they would be seen as an unbiased arbitrator of disputes once again.

2. This amendment, by itself, would force Congress to rethink their role in government and focus its entire attention on foreign affairs since all domestic affair would fall within the realm of the States.

3. This amendment, by itself would instantly heighten the status of the States in the eyes of the world and in the eyes of the federal government for it would force the federal government to treat each State of the union in the same manner as an independent State as they do every State in the world when it comes to domestic affairs of each State.

4. It would establish once and for all that the U.S. constitution was written to restrict the authority and powers of the federal government only.  And it would elevate the significance of State Constitutions as the only restriction upon the authority of State governments in terms of domestic affairs as intended.
5. One benefit of this amendment might be that, in time, Congress would not be a full time job as it is now because the work load would not be as great in regards to the need for legislation.

Does that answer your question, my friend?”

The man just nodded and said, “Thank you, you have given me food for thought.”

The crowd went silent and you could just hear the wheels turn in their heads heavy in thought as grandpa stood there awaiting more questions if any. After a few moments another voice spoke up in question as he asked this.

“That amendment was first purposed back in 1861 and its purpose was to prevent the secession of the Southern States because of the issue of slavery. Since the Civil war and the ratification of the 13th amendment solved these two issues of what use and purpose would this amendment have now?”

“Another good question, my friend.” said grandpa as he nodded to the man.

“As I stated earlier the purpose and intent of this amendment at the time of its passage in Congress may no longer be valid but that does not mean that its value as an explicit declaration of the intent of the founding fathers has diminished one iota. And that is the important issue that needs to be addressed in politics today if we want to have a government as intended by the founding fathers.

And to address an issue that is related to this I'll warn you right now that there will be some that will accuse you of trying to undo everything that has been accomplished in regards to race relations. They will even accuse you of trying to bring back the age of slavery. Well. Let's look at it from that point of view.

Whether or not it actually would is for lawyers to hash out between them and I am no lawyer. But I can speculate about how it would appear to bring back the age of slavery. From the wording of this amendment there might be an argument that in ratifying this amendment it will automatically repeal the 13th amendment. If this is true then by its very power it would also repeal the 14th and 15th amendment for the same reasons.

If in the end we find that this is not true then the argument is irrelevant, isn't it? It only can be said that it could be a problem if it is true. And if it is true then we have taken ourselves back to a time prior to the war and prior to the secession of the first State in a political sense, haven't we? This would be a time that we were still a union by consent and not by force.

Would the repeal of these three amendments be a problem? The answer is no. We do not live in a society where the people believe that the enslavement of their fellow man is a moral practice and the people as a whole do believe it should be illegal also. This is an entirely different mindset than the people had back in 1860 when they were divided on the morality of slavery.

We also have to remember that back in the 1800's there was 16 States that were considered as free States who had banned slavery on their own authority. Given the mindset of today there is no doubt that the other 34 States in this union would join those 16 States and ban the enslavement of another human being on the State level at the same time they were to ratify this amendment if they haven't done it already.

And when that happens it would only affirm the separation of powers as the founding fathers intended. It would also declare that we were once again a nation united by consent and by shared values. To me that would be the two greatest benefits of this process. For in doing so it will affirm the idea that we are a people of free will united by consent as this nation was founded and no longer a people united by force as we are now. And what better example of a government/people relationship for the world is there than that?

Now, I hope I have given you answers that you can use as defense of your position if you decide to accept this solution. For it is my belief that this is a solution to a problem that benefits persons of every political persuasion.

Are there any more questions?”


LandShark 5150 said...

Well hell yes my friend, the most important of which - here in my little old state of Tejas which with Abbott and Dewhurst both conservatively strong, this would have a chance. And yes I will press it to them. But on the national level, who knows. I real concern and as you know as well as me - if congress will not allow a list of grievances or Art convention, their inability to cut 1% from the budget, and on and on and on and really think they'll stand for having their ass handed to them?
Griper don't get me wrong, but face it (and here's one of those sticky wall moments) the Constitution is dead and buried my friend and my belief is that it will take an internal struggle as in revolution to revive this republic as intended. Secession and new unions being formed is what I believe will be the path chosen without bloodshed but the fight will be on to stop it. I know that is radical thinking but no more than our founders pondered and acted upon. The list of grievances listed by Jefferson at the end of the Declaration of Independence is exactly the same we face today from the 545± little King Georges residing on the Red Square in DC.
So what is your thought, my friend. (Word verifier - stickum)

The Griper said...

Congress would have no say in the matter only the States would have a say now since it has already been passed by Congress.

BB-Idaho said...

Why should anyone trust a state more than a nation?
Or a county more than a state? Or a community more than County? Or a neighborhood more than a community? Why?

The Griper said...

it is not a matter of trust, just a matter of self-respect, BB.

it is a matter of whether we are a nation that abides by and are united by Constitutional principles or abides by and are divided by ideological principles. which would you choose?

it is a matter of whether we want to be known as a nation that is to be united by consent or by force. which would you choose?

it is a matter of whether we want to be known as persons with a free will or persons whose lives are determined by government. which would you choose?

by the application of this amendment it would allow every person to choose the way they wish to be treated instead of forcing everyone to abide by only one way.

cases in point.

it would allow Massachusetts to choose statewide medical care for its citizens but not force every state to provide for it unless it chooses to do so.

it would allow california to recognize traditional marriage only even if other states choose to recognize gay marriages.

it would allow some states to outlaw abortion while other states permit it.

so, it is an amendment that would benefit persons of every political persuasion instead of only a single persuasion as it is now.

am i making sense?

BB-Idaho said...

My point being that if one thinks states precede the nation, then the next step is counties precede states, etc..until we have
achieved anarchy. A return
to pre-civilized times, so to speak. I am familiar with states rights..having
been based in Alabama in the early sixties. Pretty damn ugly, IMO!

The Griper said...

it's not a matter of which precedes which, BB. it's a matter of what the Constitution declares is the form of government we have, doesn't it? what value is a Constitution if we do not abide by it?

The Griper said...

to take this a step farther, BB personally i'd prefer a government hierarchy which is based upon local control over State and national governments. it is established that the people have greater control over their local governments. but as i said that isn't how the Constitution has set it up. and i am one that prefers that government abide by a constitution. and it is what our government representatives take an oath to uphold.

LandShark 5150 said...

Griper - my point is the states have passed their over runs onto the fed. And they both as well as we do that the banker will call the shots. Case in point, the fed budget as a couple tril, 310 mil people, what's it per person? Too much right? If the state didn't have the fed gov to push their debt (and I concede much of which is pushed from above by grants loans ....). If our states reps were held accountable for the over runs we would hang'em. So it is, as we speak, they have the Fed buffer and the blame game upward. Take that away? They don't want that. And yes it would eventually work itself out by rolling up the sleeves and doing the work but face it most people would find a state with a lighter load.

The Griper said...

deal with one problem at a time. and the first problem comes from the fact it would force the federal government to eliminate any and all domestic programs.and that can be accomplished all at once or over time.

Rational Nation USA said...

Sounding a bit like The Articles of Confederation.

Lincoln was perhaps the original statist. Although Washington was in fact an advocate of a strong central government as well.

The issue {state rights -vs- federal rights} was of great concern during the constitutional convention and 224 years later we are still discussion the issues.

My guess... the nation {if there still is one} will be discussing the issue years into the future.

Sometimes one feels like they are on a merry go round.

Thought provoking post Griper.

The Griper said...

there is no weaker form of government than that government whose leaders are divided in the principles of governance, RN.

that is one of the purposes of a constitution, to see to it that those leaders are united in the principles of governance.

BB-Idaho said...

"Are there any more questions?”"
Well Grandpa, are you descended from States Rights Gist ? :)

The Griper said...

ha,ha,ha BB. can you imagine someone talking to him and using his name?

it was sure nice of you to provide further evidence of the validity of grandpa's stance on this constitutional issue. sure do appreciate it.

BB-Idaho said...

True, Granpa's stance is very old..Articles of Confederation, etc. Since I study the Civil War, I was familiar with States Rights Gist. But its one of those names you wonder what the parent is thinking. You know, like:
Robyn Banks, Justin Case,
Doug Graves, Owen Money,
Ima Kettle, Hazel Nutt,
Seymore get the idea. :)

The Griper said...

yah, i get the idea BB. :)

answer a question for me. what is it that you know that i don't so as to adhere to the idea that the constitution is a living document rather than a contract?

BB-Idaho said...

Well doggone drat. My longish explanation got
redistributed into cyberspace. As to differing opinions regarding, 'living', 'pragmatic', 'contract', 'strict
construction' and the like,
don't you suppose we all have our preferences and reasons? IMO, the elegance of the thing was the built in flexibility and could grow with the nation.
Dingnabit, where is that
500 word explanation?

The Griper said...

ahhh there is a limit on words in comments, BB. if you have a copy email it to me

The Griper said...

yes i understand there are differences, BB. it is the differences that i was hoping to know from you. i recognize that it has flexability. if it didn't there wouldn't have been any provisioon for amendments.


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