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Pro-Democracy Group Warns of Secret Right-Wing Push to Rewrite Consitution


#1

Pro-Democracy Group Warns of Secret Right-Wing Push to Rewrite Consitution

Deirdre Fulton, staff writer

Under the radar of corporate media and general public, a "dangerous proposal" is bubbling up in state legislatures throughout the country—one that could trigger "political chaos that would make past upheavals like the Watergate scandal and the impeachment trial of President Bill Clinton seem tame by comparison."

"We're sounding an alarm. This is a national train wreck that must be stopped."
—Miles Rapoport, Common Cause


#2

This push for artificial civil rights for Corporation-Americans has been underway for over a century. Note that the responsibility of Corporation-Americans to spend time in prison for their wrongdoings has never been advocated.


#3

Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) and its sequels will give Corporation-Americans the power to sue governments that attempt to right corporate "wrongdoings", thereby enriching the perpetrators at the expense of the victims.

"The national train wreck" that Miles Rapoport alludes to has been in progress for more than three decades and will not end until the 1787 Constitution is totally beyond recognition.


#4

The Constitution certainly needs amending. Hard to see how the train wreck that is US political system could do so without making it far worse.


#5

i just wrote to WAmend here in Washington State, flagging this Common Cause letter and asking if they have any information they can give me about how they might mitigate the risks of a runaway Article V constitutional convention. (i've previously already signed their petition, since overturning corporate personhood is essential.) Will post here if they reply.


#6

The last time this happened in 1787, the Robber Barons and Banksters tried to prevent any citizen rights at all from being mentioned. If it were not for the Anti-Federalists who stormed out and demanded and got us a Bill of Rights, we'd have been living in a very scary country the whole time, where only money provided freedom (sorta like today, but much worse!)

The last Constitutional Convention was held in secret from the people and James Madison made every participate sign a secrecy pledge not to divulge what was being discussed. Thank God, the Anti-Federalists broke that pledge and leaked the plot to the people via alias pennames in USA newspapers.

Convening a Constitutional Convention is opening Pandora's Box for freedom-loving Americans. The last time this was done, the Convention went way beyond it's authorized powers to simply amend the Articles of Confederation, which served the nation fine with a weak Central Government.

Untaught in American History, the viewpoints of the Anti-Federalists who gave us the First Ten Amendments (the Bill of Rights) are in this seven-volume original collection that I'm about half-way through which contains the 1780's newspaper articles and broadsides opposing the power-grab by the Federalists from the people:


#7

Please read the history of the Constitution. The reason there was a constitutional convention was that the Articles of Confederation were unworkable. The central government was limited (the states were sovereign) and had no power to tax. We were fighting the Revolutionary War and the Continental Congress could not levy taxes to finance the war. The only thing they could do was to borrow money form the French (who were very willing to help us fight the bloody Brits because the French hated the Brits more than we did). Once the war was over, the country was in debt (both states and the central government had debts). The Constitution gives Congress the power to tax to pay debts (see Article 1, Section 8), so, the first Congress levied an excise tax (no income tax in the good old days) on grain used to make whiskey to pay the tax. Hamilton was much brighter than members of Congress today because he understood that if you want to raise revenue to pay debt, you must tax the wealthy because they have the money to pay the taxes. As Willie Sutton famously said when he was asked why he robbed banks: "Because that is where the money is." Hamilton also wisely rolled all state debts into the federal debt and paid them off with money raised taxing grain used to make whiskey.

Madison and Hamilton understood that the central government must have the power to tax and that individual sovereign states in a confederation is unworkable. This is evident because the Civil War happened when some states (the pro-slave states) seceded from the Union because they didn't want the federal government abolishing slavery (they argued that abolition would destroy their economy--a plantation system based on slave labor). In a confederation, individual states can go their separate ways. Since slavery is unjust, it was right for the federal government to abolish slavery even though this destroyed the plantation economy in the south. The Constitution states government is to establish justice. It does not state government is to make sure the economy grows.

The anti-Federalists argued against ratification of the Constitution (written primarily by Hamilton and Madison), because, presumably, they liked the Articles of Confederation. The "Federalist Papers" were arguments for ratification written by Madison, Hamilton and Jay.

The Constitution was ratified by the states. This means the anti-Federalists lost the argument (and this is why anti-Federalist philosophy is not taught anymore just as the Aristotelian nonsense that the earth is the center of the universe is not taught in science classes). Modern Republicans argue for limited government and low taxes. This is exactly what we had under the Articles of Confederation. The problem with conservatives is that they do not heed the words of Santayana: "Those who do not learn from the mistakes of history are doomed to repeat them."

By the way, Jefferson was not involved in writing the Constitution (he was in France at the time falling in love with the French Revolution). Jefferson did not oppose ratification, but he was philosophically an anti-Federalist because he envisioned the US as a small agrarian nation with yeomen farmers making decisions, not elitists in the central government. Opposing Jefferson was primarily Alexander Hamilton who understood that if the young country was going to grow, it had to industrialize and needed a central bank to finance the industrialization of the country (Jefferson was opposed to a central bank). History has proved Hamilton right and Jefferson wrong because we are now an industrial world power and yeomen farmers are only a small percentage of the population. Ironically, both Hamilton and Jefferson were in Washington's cabinet. I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall when they debated.


#8

Just another step in the demise of this empire and the rise of corporate feudalism.


#9

All the rights enumerated in the Constitution and the Bill of Rights are gone already . Dead letters at best . It may be that a new Constitutional convention is exactly what we need . MANY Americans hate the shift towards totalitarianism this country has taken . I wouldn't assume that the far right would win this battle .


#11

You are completely wrong. First if we let states control the process, you will get a cruddy balanced budget amendment and nothing else ... maybe. It still takes 38 states to ratify anything. One house in 13 states can veto any proposal. Even with the worst representation on the state level, since the 1930s I believe, we still have enough houses in states to stop anything we don't like.

"The basis of our political systems is the right of the people to make and to alter their Constitutions of Government. But the Constitution which at any time exists, 'till changed by an explicit and authentic act of the whole People is sacredly obligatory upon all." George Washington, Farewell Address, September 19, 1796

The people who scare others from using their right to alter or to abolish are the ones that are misleading the effort to correct our corrupt government. We have a tampered jury, we need a substitute group to help out.

Iceland and the UK have recently demonstrated how to get the People directly involved in the process. You want Americans sorting these things out as they do in other nations and even state conventions. NY is having one now too. Have you any proof that any of these conventions have ever jumped the tracks? There isn't one. They always do the job because they address the concerns of how to make government work better. that is the mission. When they are done, they go home, not run for re-election. It makes them less influenced by other entities too.


#12

Your faith is touching!


#15

What fascists? What states? And who the heck is Hitler 2.0?


#16

Please expound on this 'level of buffoons seeking ... a balanced budget'. What's your beef with balancing a budget?


#17

The constitution is dead----the "patriot act"-this is why average Americans fought in the revolution-to fight the power of the state. But this has always been a battle of the well off against the common people. Just amend the constitution and enforce the BILL OF RIGHTS. Its mind blowing the "patriot act" how Orwellian! We are a police state -wake up!


#18

You have to admit all these groups have to be admired for their perseverance. They come from all directions (abortion, Frankenfoods, PETA, gun control, pesticides,climate change denial, surveillance, militarized police--Add to the list), so as we address/protest an issue,they are attacking a dozen others. It's 3 steps forward, 2 back but always winning the war by attrition. It really is to be admired in their horror of this endless war on the social network, infrastructure, retirement safety nets, health care, and the middle-class way of life that has been decimated.


#22

Glad to see you are no longer claiming Jefferson wrote the Constitution! You might recall that I straightened you out on that some time ago.

But the rest of your "understanding" of history is pretty warped. Your beloved Bankster: the hot-head Federalist Alexander Hamilton who got himself killed in a duel, was against the Bill of Rights, and defrauded the United States during his scandals at the First Central Bank we had: The Corrupt First Bank of the United States. Hamilton debased the currency with overprinting, and when the Continental Dollar became worthless, he scurried all over the country buying it up for pennies on the dollar. He then made the government pay him full value, becoming wealthy at the expense of hard working farmers and Soldiers who General Washington never paid like he promised.

Those were the real reason for both Shay's and the Whiskey Rebellions. Shay's and the Whiskey Rebellions were the real reason that nervous elites hastily convened a secret coup against the very democratic Articles of Confederation. The public was sick and tired of Wall Street Scams. Before the coup by Madison, there was one rep for each 300 American Landholders. After the coup, there was only one rep for up to 40,000, and today in California only one rep for 742,000 voters. Americans lost their ability to meet with and get the attention of their supposed "representatives."

Republicans worship Hamilton just as you do. He was never for a weak central government, just a Military Dictatorship which is what we have today. The Black Budget for Star Wars and 26 secret wars all over the world with over 1000 bases and a military 100 times the size we need for defense, dwarf any social program spending.

Jefferson tried to end the slave trade repeatedly, but Hamilton's and the Bush Family's Slave Ships were just too profitable so it continued until the Civil War were the Railroad Barons started today's Republican Party.

The 1787 US Constitution was a complete abortion that nobody was happy with according to historian Joseph Ellis. The Constitution was not going to be ratified by all 13 states as required by the existing Articles of Confederation, so Madison cheated and claimed only nine states needed to vote for ratification. Even then, he couldn't get nine states to get on board and realized it was going to be stillborn without the Anti-Federalists, which is why he caved and agreed to put a Bill of Rights in later as amendments. The Anti-Federalist won, they got us a Bill of Rights. The Federalists, who argued for a massive military police-state, like Hamilton, disappeared into the dustbin of history. In 1800 they were voted out of existence and Jefferson moved to impeach their crooked judges who were trying to build an empire in the Justice Department.

Lastly, the Federal Government didn't abolish slavery. The emancipation proclamation only applied to slaves in the South, not Union slaves. Kidnapped Chinese slaves built railroads all over North America and were buried in mass graves all over the place. The Civil War was not about ending slavery; it was about who's slaves were going to open up the West: Black Southern Slaves or Shanghai-ed Railroad slaves. Slavery never ended in the South since Jim Crow Laws imprisoned millions and rented them out in labor chain-gangs.

Please, please, throw away the government-contaminated BS history books you've been reading and get down to the Library (if the Republicans haven't shut it down yet) and read some real original source documents like the ones I gave a link to.

Because your mind (what little is there is,) is a terrible thing to waste.

TJ


#23

Balanced budget? Ha! Where will all the money for military adventurism come from if it can't just be created out of thin air, like it is now?


#24

A central point that is a likely end result despite the calls for a balanced budget/CC is the incorporation of key elements of the Patriot Act into the Constitution permanently. In other words that the Patriot Act would no longer have an expiration date. Moreover Congress seems inclined to bestow increased power to the presidency whether in trade/treaties or war making powers.


#25

You list PETA with climate change deniers, opposition to health care and gun control and other right wing positions? You are grossly misinformed. If you oppose PETA you are the climate change denier. The meat industry is the number one driver of climate change.


#27

Balanced budgets aren't a problem in the normal case where the economy is growing. The problem comes into play when you force a balanced budget in all cases, even when the economy is in recession or depression. In those cases, revenues are depressed and expenses on social safety net programs are at their highest. Your choices are limited to drastically cutting social safety net benefits, what the right wing desperately wants, or greatly increasing taxes, something no one would want during a recession or depression. Balanced budgets are also a straight jacket that precludes stimulus spending or other smart deficit spending.

All states have balanced budget amendments except for one (I think) and it has proven to be quite a burden. Many states did indeed drastically cut spending by firing school teachers and cutting other necessary government programs and it has hurt the recovery terribly. If we were to cut social safety net programs on the national scale it would more or less guarantee the next great depression will be as deep and as vast as the one in 1929.