Author Topic: The Liberty Amemdments  (Read 266 times)

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Offline pjohns

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The Liberty Amemdments
« on: January 22, 2014, 04:02:05 PM »
I have been reading Mark Levin's most enlightening book, The Liberty Amendments:  Restoring the American Republic.  It is an excellent read.

Although I have long taken a slightly different approach from Mr. Levin--one in which the individual states simply drop out of the federal-court system, and nullify federal laws by a majority vote of their respective state legislatures--Mr. Levin does make a very good case for his own views.

Here is a synopsis of his porposed constitutional amendments: 

(1) Limit all members of Congress (both chambers) to a total of 12 years in office; and this, irrespective of whether those years are served in the House, the Senate, or a combination of both.

(2) Repeal the Seventeenth Amendment, and allow all US Senators to be chosen by the several state legislatures, as was originally the case.  As Mr. Levin notes elsewhere in the book, the Seventeenth Amendment" failed when it was introduced several times over the decades before it was finally ratified."  But, about 100 years ago, during the Progressivist fervor typified by Woodrow Wilson, "the unique political and cultural atmosphere" came about "promoting similtaneously radical egalitarianism and centralized authoritarianism." 

(3) Limit the total time served on the SCOTUS to 12 years also; and this, for both Associate Justices and the Chief Justice.  Also, provide for the option for any Supreme Court decision to be overridden by a three-fifths supermajority of both chambers of Congress; that it may also be overriden by majorities of three-fifths of the state legislatures; and that this override "shall not be the subject of litigation or review in any Federal or State court, or oversight or interference by Congress or the President."  (There would be a 24-month time frame, from the issuance of any SCOTUS decision, for either of these types of overrides to occur.)   

(4) Adopt a balanced budget by the first Monday in every May; the failure to do so resulting, automatically, in "across-the board, 5 percent reductions in expenditures from the prior year's fiscal budget."

(5) Require all federal departments and agencies to expire, automatically, "if said departments and agencies are not individually re-authorized in stand-alone re-authorization bills every three years by a majority vote in the House of Representatives and the Senate."  And submit to the GAO all "Executive Branch regulations exceeding an economic burden on $100 million."   

(6) Redefine the Commerce Clause to the US Constitution, which succeeding Supreme Courts have (apparently) considered infinitely flexible, for a very long time now.  Accomplish this by declaring that "Congress's power to regulate Commerce is not a plenary grant of power to the federal government to regulate and control economic activity but a specific grant of power preventing states from impeding commerce and trade between and among the several States."  And, moreover, that "Congress's power to regulate Commerce does not extend to activity within a state, whether or not it affects interstate commerce; nor does it extend to compelling an individual or entity to participate in commerce or trade."   

(7) Whenever the federal government seizes private property for a public use, either "by actual seizure or through regulation," causing "a market value reduction of the property, interference with the use of the property, or a financial loss to the property owner exceeding $10,000," the government must "compensate fully [the] property owner for such losses."

(8) Allow the several states, through their respective state legislatures, to enact constitutional amendments, whenever two-thirds of the states vote to do so.  (There would be a six-year time limit placed upon this measure, "starting from the date said Amendment is adopted by the first State Legislature."  Also, "Each State Legislature adopting said Amendment shall provide an exact copy of the adopted Amendment, along with an affidavit signed and dated by the Speaker of the State Legislature, to the Archivist of the United States within fifteen calendar days of its adoption." 

(9) Every bill voted upon by Congress must have "a minimum of thirty days" between its engrossing, "including amendments, and its final passage by both Houses of Congress."  During that time, the bill "shall be placed on public record," and "there shall be no changes" made to it. 

(10) In all 50 states and the District of Columbia, a photo ID shall be required in order to vote.  Those who cannot afford to acquire such identification shall have it provided "at no cost."
« Last Edit: January 22, 2014, 04:08:10 PM by pjohns »

Offline Rapunzel

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Re: The Liberty Amemdments
« Reply #1 on: January 22, 2014, 04:54:10 PM »
Thanks for the synopsis...  I can't find anything I disagree with in it.
“The time is now near at hand which must probably determine, whether Americans are to be, Freemen, or Slaves.” G Washington July 2, 1776

Offline Chieftain

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Re: The Liberty Amemdments
« Reply #2 on: January 22, 2014, 06:11:51 PM »
Its a great book, and I found his explanation about why we need term limits for SCOTUS as well as Congress, as well as how to go about imposing them, to be particularly compelling.  I've been a fan of repealing the 17th Amendment for decades, and that one act is the root of much, much evil...

Excellent synopsis too....

 :beer:

Offline Rapunzel

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Re: The Liberty Amemdments
« Reply #3 on: January 22, 2014, 06:15:41 PM »
Its a great book, and I found his explanation about why we need term limits for SCOTUS as well as Congress, as well as how to go about imposing them, to be particularly compelling.  I've been a fan of repealing the 17th Amendment for decades, and that one act is the root of much, much evil...

Excellent synopsis too....

 :beer:

I cannot imagine why anyone thought the 17th was a good idea - other than the lobby industry and the senators who had dreams of cash flowing into their pockets - how did they convince the states to give up their power in DC by agreeing to the amendment?
“The time is now near at hand which must probably determine, whether Americans are to be, Freemen, or Slaves.” G Washington July 2, 1776

Offline EC

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Re: The Liberty Amemdments
« Reply #4 on: January 22, 2014, 09:15:41 PM »
Don't often buy political books. This one has been bought.

Excellent synopsis, thank you!
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Offline Chieftain

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Re: The Liberty Amemdments
« Reply #5 on: January 22, 2014, 09:30:20 PM »
I cannot imagine why anyone thought the 17th was a good idea - other than the lobby industry and the senators who had dreams of cash flowing into their pockets - how did they convince the states to give up their power in DC by agreeing to the amendment?

Great question Rap.  The Progressives used the low information voters of the day to pass the amendment.

Pre-17th, US Senators were appointed to office by the State Legislatures.  There were periods of time where some states went unrepresented in the Senate because the Legislature could not agree to any Senator, so both seats went unfilled.  As I recall Delaware went for a couple of years with no Senator, and of course it was because the People kept reelecting the same dysfunctional legislators, but that never dawned on any of the low information voters then.

Being unrepresented in the US Senate was portrayed by the Progressives, who supported the 17th, as a National calamity, that could only be solved by amending the Constitution and giving the People the power to elect those vital Senators, and just leave those naughty State Legislators all to themselves.  That was the gist of the rationale to pass the 17th Amendment, and States who had never, ever been without a Senator because their Legislatures worked just fine, were convinced to support the amendment and save those other poor souls from themselves.

The passage and ratification of the 17th was one of the greatest frauds ever perpetrated by a political party, and when it went into effect the amendment effectively dealt the States completely out of the vital checks and balances they were originally Constitutionally bound to provide.  The fraud is that even though the People elect two Senators for their state, it is not the People whose views are represented but the Political Party to which the candidate belongs.  Senators do not answer to the People or the States, but to the Party, and that is a direct result of the 17th Amendment.



Offline Rapunzel

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Re: The Liberty Amemdments
« Reply #6 on: January 22, 2014, 09:44:14 PM »
Quote
The fraud is that even though the People elect two Senators for their state, it is not the People whose views are represented but the Political Party to which the candidate belongs.  Senators do not answer to the People or the States, but to the Party, and that is a direct result of the 17th Amendment.

I know and this is what bugs the hell of me........ how people could be so freaking stupid to think ratifying it was a good idea.  However... ask the common person on the street (even those who pay a little bit of attention to politics) what they think of the 17th.  Trust me - I have - you will get a blank stare and a huh?
“The time is now near at hand which must probably determine, whether Americans are to be, Freemen, or Slaves.” G Washington July 2, 1776

Offline aligncare

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Re: The Liberty Amemdments
« Reply #7 on: January 22, 2014, 10:09:06 PM »
The liberty amendments: what's not to love? These changes are an ultimate expression of federalism. States should step up and be counted and some already have. Americans ought to get this done.
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Offline Fishrrman

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Re: The Liberty Amemdments
« Reply #8 on: January 22, 2014, 10:53:10 PM »
Amendment number 11:
Establish a Constitutionally-protected right to privacy, with this:
======================================================
Citizens protected by this Constitution possess an inalienable right to privacy in their persons, business, and homes, and while they are in public.

It shall be a violation of this Constitution for the United States or for the several States to violate or invade the individual privacy of citizens by use of physical, mechanical, or electronic means or by the use of devices on land, on water, below the ground, or from the air.

This protection shall extend to all lawful communications and acts by an individual citizen or between two or more citizens, including content that is spoken, written, or electronically transmitted. It shall extend to citizens regardless of their location, whether in private or in public.

The only exceptions will be as governed by the Fourth Amendment of this Constitution.
======================================================

Mr. Levin, why didn't you think of that?
« Last Edit: January 22, 2014, 10:53:33 PM by Fishrrman »

Offline pjohns

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Re: The Liberty Amemdments
« Reply #9 on: January 23, 2014, 01:03:10 PM »
I cannot imagine why anyone thought the 17th was a good idea - other than the lobby industry and the senators who had dreams of cash flowing into their pockets - how did they convince the states to give up their power in DC by agreeing to the amendment?

It was sold as an expansion of democracy--"the people," after all, would be electing their senators directly--and, superficially, it probably seemed like precisely that.

But the net effect was to diminish the influence of the states upon the federal government, thereby upsetting the balance that the Framers had carefully crafted. 

Offline aligncare

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Re: The Liberty Amemdments
« Reply #10 on: January 23, 2014, 01:26:35 PM »
 :thumbsup:
It was sold as an expansion of democracy--"the people," after all, would be electing their senators directly--and, superficially, it probably seemed like precisely that.

But the net effect was to diminish the influence of the states upon the federal government, thereby upsetting the balance that the Framers had carefully crafted.
Some #NeverTrumpers are like the pockets of Japanese who didn't know the war was over


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