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looking for feedback - my constitutional amendment
vanity | 29 may 2010 | sten

Posted on 05/29/2010 4:19:47 PM PDT by sten

over the passed couple of years, i have become more and more worried about the state of our country. in particular, the size of the debt and the speed at which it has been increasing. and that speed has been increasing most recently with no end in sight. if this continues, as it did with the USSR, there is no doubt the country will cease to exist in its current form.

here are the basic facts as of 2009:

gross domestic product: $14,000 b
national debt as of today: $13,000 b
annual federal receipts: $2,105 b
congressional budget: $3,518 b

these numbers are out of whack. the budget of the US exceeds all monies brought in by $1,413b or 167% of all receipts. this would be similar to making $50k/yr and spending $84k on your credit cards... which are already at $40k.

to fix this situation, congress and the federal government needs to be reigned in. unfortunately, there are NO controls that currently exist within the framework of the Constitution to restrain congress from committing financial suicide.

as such, i would propose the following amendment to the US Constitution in order to save the country and insure its future.

"During years where the national debt exceeds 25% of the GDP, the budget of the Congress shall be restricted to no more than 75% of federal receipts brought in the year before. The remaining 25% shall go to repay the national debt in an effort to reduce the debt below 10% of the GDP.

During years when the debt exceeds 5% of the GDP, but is less than 25%, the budget of the Congress shall be restricted to no more than 85% of the federal receipts.

At no time shall the budget of the Congress exceed 125% of the federal receipts."

if this amendment were in place today, the congressional budget would be forced to stay within $1,579 b, while paying off the debt @ $526 b per year. this would continue until the debt reached $3,500 b, which would take about 18 years. at that point, the federal budget would be allowed to grow from 75 to 85% of the federal receipts, which would be $1,789 b, while paying $316 b to the remaining debt. it would take roughly 9 years until the debt is reduced to $700 b, or 5% of the GDP. once that occurs, Congress would be able to increase their budget to no more than $2,630 b on receipts of $2,105b, or 125% of all federal receipts. in roughly 27 years the country will have climbed out of the hole.

i believe this plan would resolve the impending financial crisis, reassure our debtors that we are serious about repaying the debt, while also insuring we never return to such a situation.

TOPICS: Business/Economy; Constitution/Conservatism; Government; Your Opinion/Questions
KEYWORDS: constitution; nationaldebt; taxes; vanity
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To: sten

I’m afraid you’re approaching the problem from the wrong direction. I don’t know whether you remember the financial crisis in New York City in the 70’s, but there was thought that the city might go bankrupt, it needed a federal bailout, and there was a big flap about it.

The entire time New York was digging itself into that hole, the city was required by law to have a ballanced budget every year. And New York had a balanced budget every year. On paper.

Welcome to the wonderful world of creative accounting.

I doubt that any law will restrain congressional spending. We’ll just put this on the budget, take that off the budget, and “deem” last year’s tax receipts to include the last three months of receipts from the previous year. If we can’t build a serious budget when we can at least acknowledge the problem, it’s likely to be even harder when Congress has to pretend that the budget is ballanced.

The only solution to government overspending is to elect members of congress who don’t want to.

This deends, ultimately, on the voters. The reason the members of congress spend money we don’t have, is because they believe that people will vote for them if they do, and vote them out if they don’t. It’s not because those guys can’t add—they do this to stay in office. If enough people vote for fiscal responsibility, even congressmen who don’t believe in it, will start voting for it. The TEA parties are a start in this direction.

41 posted on 05/29/2010 5:52:17 PM PDT by Keb
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To: sten

There are at least a half-dozen amendments I’d like to see made to the Constitution — but right now, I don’t want ANYTHING or anyone meddling with it! Until we RESTORE the government to the original understanding and intent of the Constitution, NO MORE changes. PERIOD.

42 posted on 05/29/2010 5:54:28 PM PDT by patriot preacher (To be a good American Citizen and a Christian IS NOT a contradiction. (
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To: sten

How about any legislator presiding over any legislative term that runs up a deficit in excess of 2.5% of GDP in a single year must step down at the end of that Congressional term and is not eliglble to run for office for four years.

43 posted on 05/29/2010 6:05:08 PM PDT by Hoodat (.For the weapons of our warfare are mighty in God for pulling down strongholds.)
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To: sten
1. The seventeenth article of amendment to the Constitution of the United States is hereby repealed.

2. The power to regulate commerce among the several States shall be used as a negative and preventive provision against injustice among the States themselves, and not for any positive purpose of the Federal Government.

44 posted on 05/29/2010 6:25:55 PM PDT by Ken H
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To: sten
which.. if you put a set of teeth in this thing ...

Therein lays the rub. The Constitution (and any law for that matter) only means anything if the people in charge actually obey it. Currently they don't. There's plenty of places where the Constitution forces a particular branch of government to do something and the branch in question refuses to act.

The massive debt our government has run up is due entirely to purposeful ignorance of the restrictions imposed by the Constitution.

45 posted on 05/29/2010 7:29:42 PM PDT by pnh102 (Regarding liberalism, always attribute to malice what you think can be explained by stupidity. - Me)
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To: Ken H
You're right A17 is a big factor in the dysfunction of the federal government. I also like your clarification of the commerce clause. Good job!
46 posted on 05/29/2010 11:38:06 PM PDT by AlienCrossfirePlayer (No representation without taxation)
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To: AlienCrossfirePlayer
Thank you! I must give credit to James Madison, who said that the power to regulate commerce among the several States "...was intended as a negative and preventive provision against injustice among the States themselves, rather than as a power to be used for the positive purposes of the General Government,".¹


¹James Madison

13 Feb. 1829 Letters 4:14--15

47 posted on 05/30/2010 12:02:07 AM PDT by Ken H
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To: sten
I'd rather have something to amplify Article VI:

Section One: Except as provided in Section Two, any action by the government, or its agents or employees, which is in violation of this Constitution or laws as described in Article VI is illegitimate, and all citizens have a right and duty to regard it as such. The Supreme Court has no authority to issue any ruling which contradicts the Supreme Law of the Land; such rulings are illegitimate and should be disregarded.

Section Two: The only time it may be necessary and appropriate for a government agent to go beyond the clearly-delineated scope of the Constitution would be when effecting a remedy for previous illegitimate activities by government agents. Such actions, to be legitimate, must be done overtly, with the nature of the previous illegitimate actions and the proposed remedy plainly spelled out. Citizens have a right and duty to scrutinize all such claims and actions.

48 posted on 06/07/2010 3:44:28 PM PDT by supercat (Barry Soetoro == Bravo Sierra)
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