Dump the Constitution

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stuff
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LOUIS MICHAEL SEIDMAN wrote:
Imagine that after careful study a government official — say, the president or one of the party leaders in Congress — reaches a considered judgment that a particular course of action is best for the country. Suddenly, someone bursts into the room with new information: a group of white propertied men who have been dead for two centuries, knew nothing of our present situation, acted illegally under existing law and thought it was fine to own slaves might have disagreed with this course of action.

Let’s Give Up on the Constitution

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Pierpont
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Amen! Quote: Our obsession

Amen!

Quote:

Our obsession with the Constitution has saddled us with a dysfunctional political system, kept us from debating the merits of divisive issues and inflamed our public discourse. Instead of arguing about what is to be done, we argue about what James Madison might have wanted done 225 years ago.

As someone who has taught constitutional law for almost 40 years, I am ashamed it took me so long to see how bizarre all this is.

And that's the problem. The Constitution is grotesquely antidemocratic and dysfunctional... but it's protected by a civic religion that blinds us to its defects. Like True Believers of the Market who redefine all the failures into proof of market infallibility, so do True Believers in this civic religion bury all the contradictions and redefine its failures and claim the Constitution was either handed down on a slab or was is a work of genius.

I've confessed in other posts that it's a matter of personal embarrassment that while I was a PoliSci major as an undergrad and certainly had disdain for much of the antidemocratic nature of the Constitution all my adult life, I never really thought it through until a read a MoJo article in '98 called 75 Stars

http://www.motherjones.com/politics/1998/01/75-stars

The more I looked into the antidemocratic math in the Constitution the more shocking it gots. For instance about 3.5% of the nation's population in the 12 smallest states can block ANY constitutional amendment... yet the 38 smallest states that can ratify any amendment do not comprise a super-majority of the population but less than 40%.

The Constitution also just fails some basic requirements of a democracy... or a democratic republic. For instance it fails the test of moral legitimacy set forth in the Declaration of independence... that government derives its JUST power from the CONSENT of the governed. No government that allows for minority rule as ours does has that consent. It also fails to offer citizens the chance to vote their conscience and be guaranteed some representation. I can vote forever and NEVER get representation for my Progressive views. I'm taxed without representation.

 

 

 

Pierpont
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  LOUIS MICHAEL SEIDMAN in a

 

LOUIS MICHAEL SEIDMAN in a NYTs article wrote:
Imagine that after careful study a government official — say, the president or one of the party leaders in Congress — reaches a considered judgment that a particular course of action is best for the country. Suddenly, someone bursts into the room with new information: a group of white propertied men who have been dead for two centuries, knew nothing of our present situation, acted illegally under existing law and thought it was fine to own slaves might have disagreed with this course of action.

This raises a question I posed a time back... why do we feel compelled to so respect our Constitution when it represented the compromises and consent of a mere 2000 white men who wrote and ratified the Constitution 225 years ago... all who are long dead and some may have been quite despicable? Why do we place the politics of 1787 above our own? Why do we deny the failures and dysfunctional of the Constitution or redefine them as proof of the genius of the Framers?

The Constitution HAS become a secular religion.

stuff
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As I have written

As I have written consistently, we ought not be constrained by the understandings of the Constitution held by the Framers, since they are dead and we can really never know the understandings about which they lied and dissembled.

Pierpont
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stuff wrote: As I have

stuff wrote:

As I have written consistently, we ought not be constrained by the understandings of the Constitution held by the Framers, since they are dead and we can really never know the understandings about which they lied and dissembled.

Of course we can know MOST of what they wanted. Just as History is full of objective facts... while much is open to new interpretations, so we know what the three branches of the government are, what a state is and how it's admitted to the union... and we know what the militia is... etc... but "general welfare" and "common defense" are left to each generation to decide. Arguably the congressional power to coin money and set the value... should not be handed off to the Fed. But if that's what Congress decided... who knows. 

Either way, I'm not a fan of the Constitution and could care less about original intent even if I debate it here quite often. The document has always been antidemocratic and virtually reform-proof.. and demographic trends are making it more so. It's created a dysfunctional and braindead political system that deprives citizens of the most basic right in a democracy... the right to vote one's conscience and get representation. In reality it's a system that steals the consent of a large percentage of citizens and gives that power to others. In that process it fails to meet the other basic principle of a democracy... that the government derives its JUST powers from the CONSENT of the governed.   

 

Karolina
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The idea of the Constitution

The idea of the Constitution was to assure that equality and justice for all human beings would be available in this new nation, as opposed to what the founders and their ancestors experienced in plutocratic Europe for milleniums. Of course, at the time the founders put the Constitution together, the only people considered to be human beings were white males, but that was as much an opinion formed by the former and current eras as today's common opinion that plutocracy must be protected has been formed by media propaganda since the 1980's.

It is apparently impossible to find anything that would be recorded on the Congresional Record from 1876 to 1988 on the internet. If one wants to study what changes were discussed and/or made in the Constitution during those years, one must find them in a law library. This is of interest to me since I recently heard that supposedly on Feb. 9, 1917, the Congressional Record of the House has a discussion on how to dumb down the public, recorded on pages 29-46, 29-47, 29-48, and 29-49, showing us how that has been now done by the media. 

If that is true, I wonder if this current NYT article does is not just continuing to practice propagandizing to the public that they must get rid of the article that has been holding that attempt to keep all of the US nation's citiens in equality and justice for over two centuries.

BTW, when I wrote to the Library of Congress about the missing years of Congressional Record, the answer was:

Library of Congress wrote:
Unfortunately, the Library of Congress does not currently have the resources and staff necessary to digitize the entire historic run of the Congressional Record from 1876 to 1988. We hope that this will be possible at some point in the future, but there are no immediate plans for this to happen.

Pierpont
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Karolina wrote: The idea of

Karolina wrote:

The idea of the Constitution was to assure that equality and justice for all human beings would be available in this new nation, as opposed to what the founders and their ancestors experienced in plutocratic

That is a laughable claim. The intent was to to create a system that protected the liberties of freemen... aka, "the People". Obviously slaves and women were left out in the cold to varying degrees. So who are we talking about here... perhaps 40% of the population? 

Karolina
Karolina's picture
The idea of the Constitution

The idea of the Constitution was to assure that equality and justice for all human beings would be available in this new nation, as opposed to what the founders and their ancestors experienced in plutocratic Europe for milleniums. Of course, at the time the founders put the Constitution together, the only people considered to be human beings were white males, but that was as much an opinion formed by the former and current eras as today's common opinion that plutocracy must be protected has been formed by media propaganda since the 1980's.

It is apparently impossible to find anything that would be recorded on the Congresional Record from 1876 to 1988 on the internet. If one wants to study what changes were discussed and/or made in the Constitution during those years, one must find them in a law library. This is of interest to me since I recently heard that supposedly on Feb. 9, 1917, the Congressional Record of the House has a discussion on how to dumb down the public, recorded on pages 29-46, 29-47, 29-48, and 29-49, showing us how that has been now done by the media. 

If that is true, I wonder if this current NYT article is not just continuing to practice propagandizing to the public that they must work against themselves and get rid of the article that has been holding that attempt to keep all of the US nation's citiens in equality and justice for over two centuries.

BTW, when I wrote to the Library of Congress about the missing years of Congressional Record, the answer was:

Library of Congress wrote:
Unfortunately, the Library of Congress does not currently have the resources and staff necessary to digitize the entire historic run of the Congressional Record from 1876 to 1988. We hope that this will be possible at some point in the future, but there are no immediate plans for this to happen.

[/quote]

Karolina
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Pierpont wrote:That is a

Pierpont wrote:
That is a laughable claim. The intent was to to create a system that protected the liberties of freemen... aka, "the People". Obviously slaves and women were left out in the cold to varying degrees. So who are we talking about here... perhaps 40% of the population? 
Did I not address that? In the 1970s you might have thought that bell-bottoms were very attractive, because everybody said so.

The originators of Democracy, the Greeks, also had slaves and powerless women. Look where they are now.

Changes are inevitable, and our Constitution has been worked on as the changes happened, though not always in the same spirit of liberty, equality and justice that it was created in...

mstaggerlee
mstaggerlee's picture
Ok - so we're all apparently

Ok - so we're all apparently in agreement here that the Great Experiment in Democracy, as set forth in the Constitution of the United States of America has failed miserably, and that it has, in effect, set up the worst form of Government possible - except for EVERYTHING ELSE THAT ANY NATION IN THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD HAS EVER TRIED!

No gang ... it ain't perfect, but it's the best we've got.  Take a lesson from the 2010 elections (y'all CAN reemember THAT far back, can't'cha?) ... don't abandon the good in the quest for perfection.

Pierpont
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Karolina wrote: Pierpont

Karolina wrote:

Pierpont wrote:
That is a laughable claim. The intent was to to create a system that protected the liberties of freemen... aka, "the People". Obviously slaves and women were left out in the cold to varying degrees. So who are we talking about here... perhaps 40% of the population? 
Did I not address that? In the 1970s you might have thought that bell-bottoms were very attractive, because everybody said so.

The originators of Democracy, the Greeks, also had slaves and powerless women. Look where they are now.

Changes are inevitable, and our Constitution has been worked on as the changes happened, though not always in the same spirit of liberty, equality and justice that it was created in...

There you go again... oblivious to your contradictions. If the Constitution was designed to protect the rights of perhaps 40% of the population and keep perhaps 10-15% (a guess) in slavery... it's ludicrous to say it was created in the spirit of liberty equality and justice for everyone. Protecting a slave owner's "right" to own slaves is hardly the protection of liberty.

And it was the REFORMS to the Constitution that have made it more in the spirit of liberty equality, and justice... not the other way around.

 

Bush_Wacker
Bush_Wacker's picture
Dump the Constitution?  Where

Dump the Constitution?  Where would you like to start?  How about removing that nasty old seperation between church and state.  How about erasing that statement about the general welfare of the people.  Be very careful what you wish for.

Pierpont
Pierpont's picture
mstaggerlee wrote: Ok - so

mstaggerlee wrote:

Ok - so we're all apparently in agreement here that the Great Experiment in Democracy, as set forth in the Constitution of the United States of America has failed miserably, and that it has, in effect, set up the worst form of Government possible - except for EVERYTHING ELSE THAT ANY NATION IN THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD HAS EVER TRIED!

No gang ... it ain't perfect, but it's the best we've got.  Take a lesson from the 2010 elections (y'all CAN reemember THAT far back, can't'cha?) ... don't abandon the good in the quest for perfection.

Yup, we're the best.... because why exactly? No evidence is needed for this claim because it's our secular religion. And let's look back to election 2000... are you saying that a system that imposes on this nation of free persons a candidate REJECTED by the people is "the best system" yet devised? Isn't a core principle of a democracy or a democratic republic that government derives its JUST powers from the CONSENT of the governed? US history was changed for the worst AGAINST the will of the People.

If you can't even deal with that obscene failure of our system then you'll never move on to see how antidemocratic the Senate is with a mere 18% of the population getting 52% of the seats... or how a mere 3.5% of the population in the 12 smallest states can block ANY reform to the Constitution.

The best... my ass. But thanks for the laugh.

Pierpont
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Bush_Wacker wrote: Dump the

Bush_Wacker wrote:

Dump the Constitution?  Where would you like to start?  How about removing that nasty old separation between church and state.  How about erasing that statement about the general welfare of the people.  Be very careful what you wish for.

Ya ya, we dare not ever try to reform the Constitution because instead of getting rid of the bad parts we might get rid of the good ones. So here we all... stuck with a system that is dysfunctional, braindead, antidemocratic, and reform-proof... and getting more so... but we dare not EVER think of real reform.

Bush_Wacker
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Pierpont wrote: Bush_Wacker

Pierpont wrote:

Bush_Wacker wrote:

Dump the Constitution?  Where would you like to start?  How about removing that nasty old separation between church and state.  How about erasing that statement about the general welfare of the people.  Be very careful what you wish for.

Ya ya, we dare not ever try to reform the Constitution because instead of getting rid of the bad parts we might get rid of the good ones. So here we all... stuck with a system that is dysfunctional, braindead, antidemocratic, and reform-proof... and getting more so... but we dare not EVER think of real reform.

You need to take a dose of reality.  Do you really think that people such as you and I would have a say in a new Constitution?  Those who own the world now would be the authors of a new and improved version and it wouldn't represent the common man in any shape or form.  No thanks.  The Constitution as it is written now is the only thread of hope that the common man has left even if it's a weak and tiny thread.

Karolina
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Pierpont wrote:And it was the

Pierpont wrote:
And it was the REFORMS to the Constitution that have made it more in the spirit of liberty equality, and justice... not the other way around.
Despite your continued whining, you clearly understood what I was saying. Good job!

Pierpont
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Karolina wrote: Pierpont

Karolina wrote:

Pierpont wrote:
And it was the REFORMS to the Constitution that have made it more in the spirit of liberty equality, and justice... not the other way around.
Despite your continued whining, you clearly understood what I was saying. Good job!

What I understand is those points of yours responded to made NO sense. Please don't try to rewrite the history of a thread that is here for all to see. 

Pierpont
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Bush_Wacker wrote: Pierpont

Bush_Wacker wrote:

Pierpont wrote:

Ya ya, we dare not ever try to reform the Constitution because instead of getting rid of the bad parts we might get rid of the good ones. So here we all... stuck with a system that is dysfunctional, braindead, antidemocratic, and reform-proof... and getting more so... but we dare not EVER think of real reform.

You need to take a dose of reality.  Do you really think that people such as you and I would have a say in a new Constitution?  Those who own the world now would be the authors of a new and improved version and it wouldn't represent the common man in any shape or form.  No thanks.  The Constitution as it is written now is the only thread of hope that the common man has left even if it's a weak and tiny thread.

ROTF

Gee... did it EVER occur to you we've gotten to this sad point BECAUSE of we have an antidemocratic Constitution?

It's going to take at least a concerted 50 year plan to reform the Constitution and that includes breaking the monopoly of power the two braindead parties have on politics. Since we'll never get real reforms from the GOP, they'll have to come from the Left. A balance will have to be struck between working with reform-minded Dems but NOT to get sucked back into the dysfunctional two party trap. Most reform efforts will have to be done OUTSIDE the Democratic Party... such as through referendum.

Reforms will have to begin in the states... reforming their constitutions to create multiparty systems there first based on proportional representation. This will FINALLY give the People some idea of what a functioning democracy can look like. Once we expand the political spectrum where anti-corporate ideas are finally given voice... we can start building a consensus that business or Wall Street needs to be placed more on a choke-chain so they can not influence the political process. First step for federal reform: the amendment process will have to be changed to be based on population instead of states... unless you like the idea of 3.5% of the population having a veto over what the other 96.5% want... or where a mere 38% can RATIFY any amendment. This is the sort of insanity we get when we base reform on states instead of population. 

And your ideas for the next 50 years are what? More of the same even as corporate power grows, more people get disgusted and drop out of the political process, and the Constitution becomes more and more antidemocratic and reform proof?

Great plan ya got there!

 

Karolina
Karolina's picture
Wrong. All it takes is

Wrong. All it takes is reforming it back from where the teabaggers and those idiots before them took a slice of "the American Dream" out of it, by a strong and brilliant and rational Congress.

Bush_Wacker
Bush_Wacker's picture
Pierpont, the idea is valid

Pierpont, the idea is valid but the reality of a new and "improved" Constitution would be a nightmare.  How does the Constitution become more and more antidemocratic?  It's hardly changed in over 200 years.  "People" are becoming more and more intidemocratic.  People are abusing the Constitution.  People keep changing while the ink stays the same.

norske
norske's picture
Dump the

Dump the Constitution...?

Probably the only chance for the US to become a civilized democracy...

As it is... continuing to vote for war mongering, war criminal, criminal corporatists who continue to facilitate the redistribution of wealth from the working class and the poor to those at the top while destroying democracies and murdering innocent people leading to the most unequal, violent, terrorist nation in the world... while pretending that voting really matters... does little more than making such crimes acceptable as the "lesser evil"...

If and when the US gets it right... probably see more than a few ex-pats returning to give it another go...

Pierpont
Pierpont's picture
Karolina wrote: Wrong. All it

Karolina wrote:

Wrong. All it takes is reforming it back from where the teabaggers and those idiots before them took a slice of "the American Dream" out of it, by a strong and brilliant and rational Congress.

That statement is so bizarre I'm speechless. You mean the Congress that foolishly let Bush con them into trusting him on invading Iraq? Or the Congress that passed the irresponsible Bush tax cuts and stopped debt pay down before it really got going? How about the Congress that passed NAFTA and the WHO... or the Congress that passed the deregulation of banks and commodities leading up to the Bush Depression?

If you have ANY valid point... I'm still waiting to hear it. But I'm giving up any hope.

stuff
stuff's picture
Quote:Of course we can know

Quote:
Of course we can know MOST of what they wanted.

Of course we can't. You can document what people do, but not what they want (or feel or believe).

stuff
stuff's picture
Quote:The idea of the

Quote:
The idea of the Constitution was to assure that equality and justice for all human beings would be available in this new nation, as opposed to what the founders and their ancestors experienced in plutocratic Europe for milleniums.

Not really. The idea of the Constitution was to limit the power of government.

stuff
stuff's picture
mstaggerlee wrote:Ok - so

mstaggerlee wrote:
Ok - so we're all apparently in agreement here that the Great Experiment in Democracy, as set forth in the Constitution of the United States of America has failed miserably, and that it has, in effect, set up the worst form of Government possible - except for EVERYTHING ELSE THAT ANY NATION IN THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD HAS EVER TRIED!

The Constitution did not attempt to establish a "democracy." The document guarantees states a "republican" form of government, not a democratic form.

drc2
Whether or not we can/should

Whether or not we can/should dump the Constitution to frame a better democracy seems to be all about how bad the new version would be, given who is running America now.  This is a fairly circular negative loop, and leaves us damned if we do and damned if we don't.

I think democracy is still a popular idea, and pointing out that we are not only in imperialism where we haven't enough left over for our domestic budget and must have imperial national security measures as well as being run by banksters brings up a lot of dissonance.  OWS was all about democracy in its spirit, and if people were not fully informed on every political wonk issue and just felt the 99 thing, that tells me that people feel that the Constitution is not working, that America is not what it ought to be, and that is something to work with.

I would propose that we begin writing up alternative Constitutions.  We will probably borrow a lot from this one if you include the Bill of Rights.  Separation of Church and State will survive.  We might even get a national bank instead of the Fed.  

Amending this Constitution is too difficult.  Too many entrenched interests can keep it from being ratified.  So, let's go for a new one, but have the going for it be a dynamic conversation on democracy and how we can have it.  Unlike the Founders, we can draw upon a number of successful models that came later.  At the very least, the national conversation would be a good thing.

Pierpont
Pierpont's picture
Bush_Wacker wrote: Pierpont,

Bush_Wacker wrote:

Pierpont, the idea is valid but the reality of a new and "improved" Constitution would be a nightmare.  How does the Constitution become more and more antidemocratic?  It's hardly changed in over 200 years.  "People" are becoming more and more antidemocratic.  People are abusing the Constitution.  People keep changing while the ink stays the same.

You mean this isn't obvious? Much of the Constitution is state based... which means it doesn't matter how many people live in a state... each state gets one vote... or it's weighted in by some other formula. All we have to do is look at the population differences between the smallest and largest states. Working from memory... a century ago when Wyoming became a state I believe the ratio between them and California was 1:9. It's now 1:72. This means any given citizen in WY has 72x the clout in the Senate than any given citizen in CA. NO... the House apportionment does NOT compensate for this since any given citizen only votes in their DISTRICT... not the entire state delegation. As the gap widens between the big population states and the small ones... these state formulas... for the Senate, EC, amendment process ALL become more antidemocratic. That means because the Senate has a veto over the House... and special duties such as ratifying nominations and treaties... our laws can be vetoed by smaller and smaller percentage of the population... AND in the case of the EC... election LOSERS can be imposed on a nation that rejected them. The currents of antidemocratic government are insidious
http://reinventing-america.blogspot.com/2005/12/insidious-currents-of-an...

Bush was able to change US history WITHOUT the consent of the People. And you're saying we dare not touch this system?

Bottom line... whenever there are vote weighting/dilution schemes... there's a chance for minority government.

Bush_Wacker
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I'm not saying we don't touch

I'm not saying we don't touch the system, but we do have the ability to amend.  No need to rewrite.

norske
norske's picture
My sense is that if the US

My sense is that if the US continues on its current course... revolution is the predictable response and following in the steps of the more successful social democracies would be a logical place to look for new beginnings....

Pierpont
Pierpont's picture
stuff wrote: mstaggerlee

stuff wrote:

mstaggerlee wrote:
Ok - so we're all apparently in agreement here that the Great Experiment in Democracy, as set forth in the Constitution of the United States of America has failed miserably, and that it has, in effect, set up the worst form of Government possible - except for EVERYTHING ELSE THAT ANY NATION IN THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD HAS EVER TRIED!

The Constitution did not attempt to establish a "democracy." The document guarantees states a "republican" form of government, not a democratic form.

That's a red herring since republican governments are STILL based on democratic principles. Where our system becomes antidemocratic is through the concept of state suffrage... which is nothing but a vote weighting/dilution scheme.. which are ILLEGAL on all other levels of government.

Based on choice of state residence... one's Senate vote can now carry up to 72x more weight if one chooses to live in Wyoming instead of California. And whenever there are such vote weighting/dilution schemes, there's a chance for MINORITY government as we got in 2000.

Pierpont
Pierpont's picture
Bush_Wacker wrote: I'm not

Bush_Wacker wrote:

I'm not saying we don't touch the system, but we do have the ability to amend.  No need to rewrite.

Why do you think I suggested a first step is the reform the amendment process itself? 

Bottom line the bar is SO steep that in 225 years not ONE amendment has changed any of the core antidemocratic features of the Constitution. Here's a breakdown:

http://reinventing-america.blogspot.com/2012/11/do-those-27-amendments-p...

And as long as a mere 3.5% of the population has a veto of ANY amendment... we're never likely to get ANY meaningful reform.

 

Pierpont
Pierpont's picture
stuff wrote: Quote:Of course

stuff wrote:

Quote:
Of course we can know MOST of what they wanted.

Of course we can't. You can document what people do, but not what they want (or feel or believe).

Sure we can... to a point. Leaving aside what was actually written into law, there's a vast amount of historical documentation that addresses MOST, not all, questions. But as I've said in other threads, opinions don't matter if those ideas did NOT make it into law. Yes there are many defects in the study of history. It's usually written by the elite or the victors to suit their own purposes. It's incomplete as Howard Zinn demonstrated. But to follow your guidelines we can never be sure of anything... is to embrace historical ignorancel. You're so committed to this you even seem to ready to throw the baby out with the bathwater by rejecting even OBJECTIVE historical facts. 

Pierpont
Pierpont's picture
What's insidious about our

What's insidious about our system is it creates disincentives for democratic reforms. Look at Bernie Sanders.... an economic progressive but do you ever hear a peep out of him about true democratic reform? He's a member of perhaps the most malapportioned, antidemocratic legislative body on the planet... and he must know Vermonters would NEVER want to give up their power in the Senate.

Think of it... our system is not just antidemocratic and permits minority government, the system is so insidious it works against ANY talk of democracy.

stuff
stuff's picture
Democratic? Undemocratic?

Democratic? Undemocratic? Democratic? Undemocratic?

Make up your mind.

nimblecivet
nimblecivet's picture
A new era is being ushered

A new era is being ushered in. Those who cling to antiquated ideals will perish in the great coming transformation. Only those who are able to discern true power in the range of possibilities before them shall emerge triumphant as the shapers of their own destiny. Within the worlds of privilege which they cast for themselves, impervious as sheer ice cliffs from the outside, all the expression of joy and fulfillment of every type will resound in the echoes of life, love, laughter, and yes, also tears and sadness- but never forgetting that EVERYBODY is special!

Karolina
Karolina's picture
Pierpont wrote:You mean the

Pierpont wrote:
You mean the Congress that foolishly let Bush con them into trusting him on invading Iraq? Or the Congress that passed the irresponsible Bush tax cuts and stopped debt pay down before it really got going? How about the Congress that passed NAFTA and the WHO... or the Congress that passed the deregulation of banks and commodities leading up to the Bush Depression?
There is no connection between whatever you are pointlessly asking me here and my suggestion that what it will take to readjust the Constitiution is having a non-plutocratic, non-oligarchical, non-self-serving, non-neo-liberal-neo-concervative, non-libertarian group of patriots in the Congress. Though we lost my faovorite rep, Representative Kucinich, we have gained some good people today and I am optimistic about the Constitution.

If you can't understand that, we'll just have to agree that you are hopeless.

Pierpont
Pierpont's picture
stuff wrote: Democratic?

stuff wrote:

Democratic? Undemocratic? Democratic? Undemocratic?

Make up your mind.

Dealing with your inability to understand simple concepts isn't my responsibility.

Pierpont
Pierpont's picture
stuff wrote: Quote:The idea

stuff wrote:

Quote:
The idea of the Constitution was to assure that equality and justice for all human beings would be available in this new nation, as opposed to what the founders and their ancestors experienced in plutocratic Europe for milleniums.

Not really. The idea of the Constitution was to limit the power of government.

Hardly... try reading the Preamble for a clue to its purpose.

The Constitution also ENABLED a more powerful government. A government where limiting government power was a high priority proved to be an utter failure of the Articles. Ever hear of them?

Pierpont
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Karolina wrote: Pierpont

Karolina wrote:

Pierpont wrote:
You mean the Congress that foolishly let Bush con them into trusting him on invading Iraq? Or the Congress that passed the irresponsible Bush tax cuts and stopped debt pay down before it really got going? How about the Congress that passed NAFTA and the WHO... or the Congress that passed the deregulation of banks and commodities leading up to the Bush Depression?
There is no connection between whatever you are pointlessly asking me here and my suggestion that what it will take to readjust the Constitiution is having a non-plutocratic, non-oligarchical, non-self-serving, non-neo-liberal-neo-concervative, non-libertarian group of patriots in the Congress. Though we lost my faovorite rep, Representative Kucinich, we have gained some good people today and I am optimistic about the Constitution.

If you can't understand that, we'll just have to agree that you are hopeless.

My apologies.... I misread your post just now saw you included those before the Tea Crack Pots. But even taking it back to before Reagan does NOT deal with the inherent antidemocratic, braindead, and reform proof nature of the Constitution. All you're wishing for is a time before the Right became ascendent... WITHOUT looking at how our Constitution made that possible. You seem determined to deny the Constitution has ANY faults even though it gave us Bush after being REJECTED by the People. Or what about Clarence Thomas who was REJECTED by Senators who represented a majority of the population? He then went on to be the swing vote now in how many far right court decisions like Bush v Gore?

It's one thing for the majority to screw up and have a chance to learn from their mistakes. Our system deprives the public of even that basic right to a civic education.

 

 

ah2
It would be nice to revisit

It would be nice to revisit the structure of the Constition.  It seems to me it would probably be beneficial to look at the consulting people ike Jefferson did after he wrote the Constitution when helping other countries creating theirs.  There were some pretty distinct and consistent differences (parlimentary system for example) that probably would benefit the political process in this country.

 

 

Pierpont
Pierpont's picture
ah2 wrote: It would be nice

ah2 wrote:

It would be nice to revisit the structure of the Constition.  It seems to me it would probably be beneficial to look at the consulting people ike Jefferson did after he wrote the Constitution when helping other countries creating theirs.  There were some pretty distinct and consistent differences (parlimentary system for example) that probably would benefit the political process in this country.

Are you saying Jefferson wrote the Constitution? He was corresponding with Madison but Jefferson was in France. 

stuff
stuff's picture
Quote:The Constitution also

Quote:
The Constitution also ENABLED a more powerful government. A government where limiting government power was a high priority proved to be an utter failure of the Articles. Ever hear of them?

More powerful than the Articles of Confederation, which was why Jefferson demanded a Bill of Rights.

The whole point of having a written constitution in the first place is to put limits on its power.

Pierpont
Pierpont's picture
stuff wrote: Quote:The

stuff wrote:

Quote:
The Constitution also ENABLED a more powerful government. A government where limiting government power was a high priority proved to be an utter failure of the Articles. Ever hear of them?

More powerful than the Articles of Confederation, which was why Jefferson demanded a Bill of Rights.

The whole point of having a written constitution in the first place is to put limits on its power.

Thanks for another display of ignorance. The Constitution did BOTH... enabled a more powerful government AND tried to place limits on these expanded power by constructing it so the people and the states retained the rest of their rights. But it DID have expanded powers over the Articles. So any notion the ONLY thing the Constitution did was place limits on itself is absurd. Why even bother creating a government if that was its only purpose. READ THE GODDAMN PREAMBLE.. then read all the granted powers.

You seem to have real problems with nuance. Everything to you is black or white.

stuff
stuff's picture
Quote:READ THE GODDAMN

Quote:
READ THE GODDAMN PREAMBLE

My, my, such language.

Karolina
Karolina's picture
Pierpont wrote:You seem

Pierpont wrote:
You seem determined to deny the Constitution has ANY faults even though it gave us Bush after being REJECTED by the People. Or what about Clarence Thomas who was REJECTED by Senators who represented a majority of the population? He then went on to be the swing vote now in how many far right court decisions like Bush v Gore?

It's one thing for the majority to screw up and have a chance to learn from their mistakes. Our system deprives the public of even that basic right to a civic education.

Without some research and thought I wouldn't have any idea as to how the traitorous reigns of the Plutocrats' handymen can be avoided. I think you will agree that it seems that most of the problem lies in the propaganda that is so cleverly delivered to the public, that they fight to go and elect all that is most damaging to themselves and their families.

Maybe some control of out-and-out manipulation and entrapment propaganda would be helpful, both in the government and the private corporate sector — along with many other controls where huge inequalites are found?

Traitors were working for the reconnection of the united American states to the monorchical motherland and her plutochrats, in the earliest history of our Republic and throughout. Yes, you'd think we'd have learned by now.

Phaedrus76
Phaedrus76's picture
Pierpont wrote: ah2 wrote: It

Pierpont wrote:

ah2 wrote:

It would be nice to revisit the structure of the Constition.  It seems to me it would probably be beneficial to look at the consulting people ike Jefferson did after he wrote the Constitution when helping other countries creating theirs.  There were some pretty distinct and consistent differences (parlimentary system for example) that probably would benefit the political process in this country.

Are you saying Jefferson wrote the Constitution? He was corresponding with Madison but Jefferson was in France. 

Madison largely wrote the VA constitution, with Jefferson and others. Then Madison began with the VA Con. as his basis for the Federal Constitution, and had to work out some compromises, Virginia plan vs New Jersey Plan, slavery etc.  

stuff
stuff's picture
Jefferson thought Madison's

Jefferson thought Madison's (and Hamilton's) constitution gave too much power to the national government, which is why he and others demanded a Bill of Rights, in order to put limits on the power of the new federal state.

Note, that the Bill of Rights originally limited only the national government, not state governments.

Pierpont
Pierpont's picture
stuff wrote: Jefferson

stuff wrote:

Jefferson thought Madison's (and Hamilton's) constitution gave too much power to the national government, which is why he and others demanded a Bill of Rights, in order to put limits on the power of the new federal state.

Gee, now you FINALLY see the light... that the Constitution was NOT just about limited government as you repeatedly said. It also created a more POWERFUL government. Now if you just learn about the nuances of history.

As for Madison, he believe the construction of the Constitution made a Bill Of Rights unnecessary... and a Bill Of Rights potentially dangerous. He feared to enumerate some rights placed the others at risk. Madison was clearly correct. That's exactly what's happened... which is why the Right had to buy into a bastardized Second to satisfy a crucial constituent group.  

 

stuff
stuff's picture
Thank you, Mr. Polisci

Thank you, Mr. Polisci Undergraduate.

Pierpont
Pierpont's picture
stuff wrote: Thank you, Mr.

stuff wrote:

Thank you, Mr. Polisci Undergraduate.

TRANSLATION: you have no real rebuttal to what I wrote and think some sarcastic response will distract from that.

Why didn't you just say so????

stuff
stuff's picture
Why should I respond to you

Why should I respond to you when you have not responded to my question:

Do you support anti-gun nuts?