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US Constitution for the 21st Century
A United States Constitution for the 21st Century ^ | 11/15/2010 | John K. Piper

Posted on 08/29/2012 7:42:49 PM PDT by johnkpiper

Two visions: A highly amended current Constitution, or a new alternative US Constitution. Both ensure the intent of the founders to protect Individual Rights and limit the Powers of the Federal and State Governments, but are updated with 224 years of hindsight since the 1787 Constitutional Convention. Why do that? Because we have to! We are broker than we have ever been: $15 trillion in debt…that’s $15,000,000,000,000.00… 100% of GDP… for a sense of perspective, that is bigger than ELEVEN Canadas.

(Excerpt) Read more at pipe-dream-constitution.info ...


TOPICS: Government
KEYWORDS: 21st; century; constitution; new

1 posted on 08/29/2012 7:42:52 PM PDT by johnkpiper
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To: johnkpiper

Nope. The 1787 version is fine. We just need to live by it..


2 posted on 08/29/2012 7:44:48 PM PDT by cardinal4 (Do I really need a /s tag?)
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To: johnkpiper
I have problems with the first amendment -- I think Islam should be outlawed.
I have problems with the second amendment -- I think it needs to be more clear that I can carry concealed anywhere at any time.
I have problems with the 16th amendment -- income tax is wrong.
I have problems with the 17th -- direct election of senators is wrong.

The US Constitution failed to stop us from drifting toward a socialistic servile state. On paper, it reads pretty well, but after 200+ years of practice, we've ended up in a bad place.

I'd like a reset, because I don't like where we are.

3 posted on 08/29/2012 7:49:53 PM PDT by ClearCase_guy (I'm not voting for Romney. The Grand Old Whig Party doesn't own my vote and failed to earn it.)
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To: johnkpiper
No. Because the same people who run our government now are going to be the ones elected to "fix" the Constitution. We don't need to mess with the Constitution, we need people to quit being so careless with their votes.

You get what you vote for.

4 posted on 08/29/2012 7:52:56 PM PDT by MNJohnnie (Giving more money to DC to fix the Debt is like giving free drugs to addicts think it will cure them)
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To: ClearCase_guy
I'd like a reset, because I don't like where we are.

If you cannot elect the Goverment you want, why in the world would you think you can elect the Constituional Convention you want? It stupidity in voting that is the problem, not the Constitution.

5 posted on 08/29/2012 7:55:22 PM PDT by MNJohnnie (Giving more money to DC to fix the Debt is like giving free drugs to addicts think it will cure them)
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To: johnkpiper
NOPE!

Not a snowball's chance....

6 posted on 08/29/2012 7:56:31 PM PDT by Wings-n-Wind (The main things are the plain things!)
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To: MNJohnnie
I recognize that "fixing" the document is not likely to work, because people are flawed.

But are you suggesting that we try to "fix" 300 million Americans as a more achievable goal?
Or are you suggesting that we accept the status quo of $1.5T annual deficits and rampant government corruption, because, hey, people are flawed and you can't really fix that?

In short: what's your plan?

7 posted on 08/29/2012 7:59:53 PM PDT by ClearCase_guy (I'm not voting for Romney. The Grand Old Whig Party doesn't own my vote and failed to earn it.)
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To: ClearCase_guy
I have problems with the first amendment -- I think Islam should be outlawed.

Not really a 1st amendment problem; Islam is not a religion, but a political, and legal, system with the trappings of a religion.

I have problems with the second amendment -- I think it needs to be more clear that I can carry concealed anywhere at any time.

I'm not sure it's a problem. Just needs a second section: "It is the right of every Citizen to keep and bear arms; no law or tradition withstanding, any government officer, official, or judge attempting to abridge this amendment shall forfeit all enrollments, pensions, and retirement benefits."

I have problems with the 16th amendment -- income tax is wrong.

I would actually rather an income tax than a property tax; the latter means that you can never, never own your own land and become independent of the government.

I have problems with the 17th -- direct election of senators is wrong.

Agreed; the States themselves [as entities] have no representation in the federal government.

The US Constitution failed to stop us from drifting toward a socialistic servile state. On paper, it reads pretty well, but after 200+ years of practice, we've ended up in a bad place.

I lay much of the blame on the judiciary: precedent is a horrible, horrible thing, it is nothing less than judges playing the children's game of 'telephone' with your [legal] rights.

I'd like a reset, because I don't like where we are.

What we need as-a-country is real, moral, righteous life... the kind that only God gives.

8 posted on 08/29/2012 8:02:06 PM PDT by OneWingedShark (Q: Why am I here? A: To do Justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with my God.)
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To: johnkpiper

NO!

Today’s leaders are not the best and brightest. There are no James Monroes, Thomas Jeffersons, Sam Adams, or Benjamin Franklins in our government. I doubt if most of them that are there have read Locke, Rousseau, or Hobbs. Or even the Federalist Papers for that matter. The best minds of the twenty first century are not attracted to Washington.

They need to keep their hands OFF the Constitution.


9 posted on 08/29/2012 8:04:45 PM PDT by lrdg
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To: johnkpiper
Welcome to FR, John. With respect, the part of the Constitution dispensed with in the Pipe-Dream version is the entire purpose of the original document: to lay out the structure and relationships of the various branches of government. A Constitution consisting only of an augmented Bill of Rights is fine as a statement of principle but useless as a model for government.

I'm not entirely certain that such minutiae as plastic surgery and the ingestion of intoxicating substances really belong in such a source document. Rather, I would submit that these are to be governed under a broader principle that would be equally applicable to topics not so specifically delineated - the Constitution is, after all, supposed to be a framework for future legislation.

It may be that I have misinterpreted your intentions here and if so I apologize, but it appears to me that the proper focus of the body of your text ought to be on the Bill of Rights exclusively. Whether I've missed the point or not (and that is quite likely), thanks for an interesting read.

10 posted on 08/29/2012 8:06:13 PM PDT by Billthedrill
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To: johnkpiper

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!


11 posted on 08/29/2012 8:09:58 PM PDT by Emperor Palpatine (I need a good stiff drink. How 'bout you?)
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To: lrdg
Or even the Federalist Papers for that matter.

Honestly, I think the Antifederalist Papersare a bit more relevant and insightful.

12 posted on 08/29/2012 8:09:58 PM PDT by OneWingedShark (Q: Why am I here? A: To do Justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with my God.)
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To: ClearCase_guy

Many living Americans have fought in wars and been permanently scarred because of it. Many other Americans have lossed loved ones. Many Americans have died in such wars.

The common denominator for all:

They swore an oath to defend the Constitution. As did I.

No one in their right mind would want to get rid of it.


13 posted on 08/29/2012 8:22:01 PM PDT by moonshot925
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To: johnkpiper

Maybe he means a new constitution with a new Qualifications Test for the Presidency (like, “Citizen of Kenya, Indonesia, Pakistan, or Transylvania?”). Well, that would at least clean things up a bit...

I vote for keeping (and honoring) the old one...


14 posted on 08/29/2012 8:27:04 PM PDT by faithhopecharity
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To: johnkpiper
If it ain't broke, don't fix it!

Changing the 'old' language in the Bibles for the lazy and calling that modernizing....2+2=5 if it makes the child less fearsome of math; changing the rules in some sports so there are no winners or losers and on and on. The United States Constitution is one of the most admired documents in the world....Leave It Alone.

15 posted on 08/29/2012 8:41:00 PM PDT by yoe (Vote for your Country, not a political party. or personal issues.)
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To: ClearCase_guy

That is because we have a Post-Constitutional government like Mark Levin states.

So many current laws should be Null and Void because they conflict with the Supreme Law of the Land. They are provable UNCONSTITUTIONAL. We The People have to make sure the judges quit twisting and warping our Constitution into Marx’s Manifesto.

If we were following the Constitution—Muslims wouldn’t be allowed to become citizens, because they believe in another political system and want to overthrow the Constitution, and polygamy denies equality under their law to women. Polygamy is illegal here.

We need to return to laws prior to Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. who removed God’s laws from our legal system. We have one standard —where our Rights are from-—not from Satan—or Barney Frank. God=Given Rights are the only one compatible with our Constitution.

All laws giving special rights to any group-—including special health care for Congressmen-—and DOE are UNCONSTITUTIONAL-—as is Obamacare.

We have to impeach judges and get them to quit being activist judges and acting like a ruling elite. This is not an oligarchy and the judges are ignoring the Supreme Law of the Land.

The Constitution—as it is— is near perfect.


16 posted on 08/29/2012 11:09:39 PM PDT by savagesusie (Right Reason According to Nature = Just Law)
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To: ClearCase_guy

Hello, ClearChase

I agree on most everything you say (except that Islam should be outlawed - only the intolerant/violent type should be), and lay out specifics in the pipe dream constitution.

Your Loyal Servant,
JKP


17 posted on 09/10/2012 10:41:14 PM PDT by johnkpiper
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To: MNJohnnie

Hello, Minnesota Johnnie

I agree with your sentiment, but not the conclusion. We vote for the lesser of the evils, and a careless vote between a skunk and a rat is still a vote for a skunk or a rat. The system is rigged, and most people can be accused of careless votes with these conditions. I address some of this in my fantasy constitution.


18 posted on 09/10/2012 10:41:46 PM PDT by johnkpiper
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To: Wings-n-Wind

Hello, Wings and Wind,

I agree, not even a little snowball’s chance...
But they said that in 1787, too. I daresay we should consider our alternatives, as limited as they are, though.

Your Loyal Servant,
JKP


19 posted on 09/10/2012 10:42:06 PM PDT by johnkpiper
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To: lrdg

Hello, Lrdg,
I agree completely that the best and brightest are not attracted to D.C.

Which is probably the way it should be...they should be members of the civil society, making their mark as businesspeople, scientists, and (commonsensical) thinkers, not rulers.

BUT a few should want to do a term of service as a Representative the same as people do an enlistment in the Army...but they are not attracted to D.C. because it is such a den of vile vultures, elected with the aid of slanderers like David Axelrod, who could turn Mother Teresa into a demon.

It requires a few believers in constitutional principles to go to D.C. to ensure the Constitution is upheld...and pry the hands of the scoundrels off of it.

My point is: this noble document has been so adulterated by people who lack honor and virtue that its principles need to be reaffirmed in a stronger document...or we are doomed as a Free people.

Your Loyal Servant,
JKP


20 posted on 09/10/2012 10:45:00 PM PDT by johnkpiper
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To: Emperor Palpatine

Greetings and Salutations, Excellency...

What makes you think it ain’t broke?

Your Loyal Servant,
JKP


21 posted on 09/10/2012 10:48:40 PM PDT by johnkpiper
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To: Billthedrill

Hello, Bill,

I must say, you are exactly the type of person I expected to encounter on Free Republic: Thoughtful, yet tactful. I DO appreciate it.

My purpose was to lay out a prototype for a free society which would be improved upon by those smarter than I, such as those on this forum.

I did, as you said, lay out an expanded Bill of Rights. Stuff that many of us talk about and “take for granted, duh” but have not explicitly codified. Stuff that enemies of liberty would twist to mean something different if it weren’t explicitly stated.

I figure, not to be contentious but simply to state to the counterargument, that it is actually, very useful as a model for government to lay out Rights which government may not violate and which Courts will enforce on the other branches of government. It has worked reasonably well for the 1st, 2nd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 8th, and 14th amendments, and occasionally for the 9th and 10th. These are far more than (simply) a statement of principle, but a statement of the inherent (god-given, or natural) rights of man, which no (legitimate) government may violate. Not only not-useless, but required by a government by consent.

On plastic surgery and intoxicating substances, I must (heh heh) yield, because Constitutions are supposed to lay out principles, not specifics, as I have done.

The remaining parts (II-VI, grouped by topic) lay out the cybernetics (that is, proper functioning) of this limited government. This makes the document far broader than simply an expanded statement of Rights, but an actual (but long- winded) blueprint for Government. (To be pared down and refined by others wiser than I.)

Your Loyal Servant,
JKP


22 posted on 09/10/2012 11:32:29 PM PDT by johnkpiper
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To: faithhopecharity

Hello, person adopting the names of the three most admirable qualities anyone can exercise...

I vote for keeping the old (current) one, too, since I am inherently conservative...

However, we may not get that choice! I am looking two moves ahead in this chess game...my point being: The current debt/fiscal situation may implode the government, requiring a new one to be figured out.

This isn’t a trivial matter! No less than the Great One, Mark Levin, has stated that he thinks we live in a “post-constitutional” republic. That means we are living in a time when the law is uncertain...rights are uncertain...settled law is unsettled. If we are to live in a nation of laws and not of men, we need to figure this out, or we will implode fiscally, and legally.
This pipe dream constitution is one way. I also propose amendments to the constitution as another way. Neither is perfect, but both law out ideas for you to chew on.

Your Loyal Servant,
JKP


23 posted on 09/11/2012 2:15:54 AM PDT by johnkpiper
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To: ClearCase_guy
The US Constitution failed to stop us(??) from drifting toward a socialistic servile state.

The Constitution doesn't endanger our liberty and longevity...
..POLITICIANS (elected by an ignorant and nonchalant people) endanger our liberty and longevity

*********************

On paper, it reads pretty well, but after 200+ years of practice, we've ended up in a bad place.

We've ended up in a bad place because:

(1) We didn't insist on enforcing the Constitutional matrix of governing principles...

(2) We passed amendments that weakened the basic framework ... as you accurately noted...

(3) We have taken a laissez-faire approach to the (lack of) teaching American history and imparting American ideals and values in our education system for the last 40 years...

--AND--
(4) Lately --we have elected TRAITORS!!!
(Just sayin')

Composite_jkr

***********

I'd like a reset, because I don't like where we are.

Can you imagine...??

Attempting a "reset" over a several years period with the radical left occasionally running the country??

IMO --
We should do all that we can to reject the ideas and usurpations of the radical left...

IOW -- Toss them out of the halls of power by a large margin.. and with a stern warning.

Pray for a God-sent revival of our faith and renewed honor for the sacred laws that serve as foundation to our earth-bound laws....

--AND--
Promote a renewal of our historical values and a refreshing of our history --

This Constitution will do just fine --
...Should we again choose to live by it....

Again.... jmho...
No flames...
Just tryin' to think it through...

24 posted on 09/11/2012 8:45:24 AM PDT by Wings-n-Wind (The main things are the plain things!)
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To: johnkpiper
Thank you; it was lovely hearing from you. I think it takes an effort such as this to appreciate just how daunting a task writing the Constitution really was, for it does have to be both a plan on government and a strict set of limitations on government power. I am coming around to the point of view of the anti-Federalists that an attached Bill of Rights was likely to be less persuasive than actually incorporating those principles into the main body of the document. It does provide an easier target for those intent on circumventing them.

An exhaustive listing of corresponding features is beyond the scope of a forum posting, but it seems clear to me that certain ones have proven advantageous well beyond their theoretical predictions. Edmund Burke would probably chuckle to read that. A bicameral legislature, for one, that serves both to present a form of power sharing between equal state governments and unequal populations. This has, sadly, been seriously weakened by the progressive enthusiasms that gave us the 17th Amendment. Separation of powers for another, for which we have to thank Sydney and Montesquieu. Checks and balances. The list is long.

I shouldn’t have been too hard on your inclusion of such items as plastic surgery and intoxicating substances in view of the facts that (1) I do think limitations on government power belong in the body, and (2) the Framers decided to include a couple of specifics there themselves – bills of attainder, for one, importation of slaves for another.

The real difficulty with Constitutional language is not in the enumerated powers but in those the federal government has assumed under the general rubrics of the Necessary and Proper clause and the Commerce clause. This, for Constitutional conservatives, has proceeded from the suspicious to the abusive and now resides in the category of the grotesque. We now see serious debates in Congress on matters such as vehicle fuel from corn squeezings and weddings for individuals fond of alternate sexual practices. It is, to say the least, a degradation of an institution meant for loftier purposes.

I’ve bookmarked the thread to see what others have to offer. Thanks for posting!

25 posted on 09/11/2012 11:02:47 AM PDT by Billthedrill
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