October 30, 2013

A call to conservatives / constitutionalists / libertarians / classical liberals

It is clear — and yes, I’m willing to debate any person from the right’s opinion complex — that DC is invested in DC solely, that the federal government, and both parties who comprise it (with few very obvious exceptions:  the GOP establishment, for example, will simply not back conservative candidates, even though it is conservative lawmakers, and those running for such positions, who are working overtly and unapologetically to try to reverse course on a tyrannical centralized concentration of power), are invested in their own self interests, first as incumbent politicians, second as power brokers, third as special pleaders for their various cronies and clients, and fourth as managerial technocrats willing to trade turns with Democrats managing an unwieldy and unconstitutional Leviathan whose various legislative and regulatory tentacles have strangled the states, reducing them to largely impotent appendages of federal power.

We’ve discussed here briefly Mark Levin’s book, the Liberty Amendments (a book I strongly recommend you purchase, if you haven’t already in which Levin posits use of Article 5, amendment 2: essentially, a constitutional provision that acknowledges the rights of the states to circumvent the federal government and call an amendments convention (which is completely different from a Constitutional convention) using state legislatures to appoint delegates for the purposes of proposing fixes to federal overreach and neuter some of the powers federal lawmakers and the federal judiciary have secured for themselves and cling to as a means of institutional survival, power, and civic and social control over an increasingly marginalized electorate who can’t hope to reform DC nor in any way act as a democratic check on bureaucratic activity that has become, in general terms, nothing more than Executive branch legislating.

Not surprisingly, many on the right — particularly those who have become invested in one way or another with the continued control over the GOP by establishment insiders, be it out of a misguided and now demonstrably unsuccessful attempt to embrace pragmatism (the “art of the possible” being one such shorthand for such a positioning) in order to make headway against the left, or out of some sort of capitulation to the false idea that “realism” demands they recognize that the US is, forever and always now, a New Deal country, one that demands governmental intervention into all areas of our lives — reject Levin’s foregrounding of a constitutional remedy to an ever more power centralized government as “unpractical” or “unworkable,” which was precisely the position many colonists took to the proposition of a war for independence.

But the why of this impracticability or unworkability, when it is broached at all, simply points to the fact that previous attempts to use the provision have never worked, an argument that claims for the status quo a state of permanence in needn’t take on, and presents the trajectory of the nation into the socialist Utopia Obama and the progressives have spent near a century working toward as a kind a foregone conclusion, a trajectory one needn’t accept as fixed and fated.   Hence the GOP establishment’s unspoken (and yet quite obvious) strategy of losing more slowly — and the rebuke by those of us who refuse to accept such a fatalistic worldview, knowing as we do that the US carved from a history of worldwide despotism, tyranny, and monarchy, a system of government that had never before been tried.

All of which brings me to the point of this post.   What I’d like to do — using a kind of crowd sourcing method of gathering information — is to put together a step-by-step guide for the citizen wishing to get involved in a movement to re-establish constitutional limits on the federal government, return power to the states and localities, and blunt the 1-vote finality of a SCOTUS ruling becoming forever enshrined as the law of the land (even against the broad interests of the electorate, and relying on an encroachment into social jurisdictions where the Court does not belong).  It is one thing to say that the remedy to a cloistered DC ruling class is to circumvent them at the state level; but it is quite another to begin to understand, from the most basic steps to the more advanced procedural hurdles, just how to go about doing it.

Clearly, one thing citizens can do is contact their district reps and ask them whether or not they are for a constitutional movement to curtail a DC-centric government by way of using the power of the collective state legislatures.  Those who do should be supported; those who hedge or who say they cannot support such a position should be opposed.  And — as much as I hate pledges — in this instance support for a particular candidate should be tied specifically to this willingness (or not) to use the constitutional provision provided us to take on the very federal overreach that has taken away from the states the power it once held over a federal government they themselves gave life to.

But this is merely a first step — or perhaps even an ancillary first step — toward drawing a blueprint for how to begin this process of having state delegations working to amend the Constitution in ways that can reverse our 100-years + drift (if you take into account Marbury) from fidelity to the Constitution as written and intended.

What I hope to do, as an addendum to Levin’s book on the Mason-proposed provision of Article 5 (which was included in the Constitution as a way to combat centralized tyranny without civil war or violence, and without which the Constitution may not have passed), is draw that blueprint for getting this done, step by step, from the simplest step (registering to vote) to the more wonkish and procedural niceties that need to be mastered and understood should we wish the project to gain national traction.

To that end, I’m putting out this call:  some of you have doubtless dealt with bureaucratic hurdles or intentionally-placed obstructions to limit the effects of activism (particularly on the conservative / TEA Party side).  Others of you have experience with state and local government that provides you with insights into how to negotiate the various roadblocks in order to secure for ourselves a clear, consistent, and simpe path toward electing and securing local legislative majorities in the states, voting in only those who pledge to support an effort at a states convention.

Leftwing activist groups have been able to pull these kinds of things off in the past.  So what we need is a kind of ACORN-like blueprint for undoing the damage of ACORN-like community activism campaigns, which are ubiquitously interested in securing federal funding, or some favorable political concession, for some special pleader or other.

I envision this “blueprint” — or maybe better, a step-by-step guide — as an invaluable resource for those who embrace the Article 5, section 2 gift granted us by the framers as a way to combat entrenched federal power without having to convince that power to vote against their own personal and professional political interests.

For this we’ll need the expertise of activists, wonks, researchers (to provide lists of contact information for state reps), and experts at crafting a simple, singular expression of our goals and purpose — as well as coming up with a rhetorical strategy for pushing the movement that anticipates the likely responses from opponents of such a strategy, both on the GOP side and on the left, both of which cater to entrenched statism and status quo pragmatism that operates against the interests of we, the people, even as it pretends it is our sole protector against predation, the compassionate and noble political shield against a cold, uncaring world of battling self-interests that militate against an egalitarian end game (watched over by a benevolent class of rulers whose kindness and beneficence cannot be questioned).

As Senate Democrats move to try to get the “McConnell Rule” into law — a move that would splinter the constitutional check on spending and obviate the need for a people’s House (the Senate is already, as currently constructed, redundant, given that the popular election of Senators circumvents the framer’s intent, namely, to give state legislatures a voice in the Senate by way of state chosen representatives open to recall) — it is imperative that we move to outflank them from the grass roots.

To do this, I believe Levin has highlighted a destination that could, if successfully occupied, work as a way to return power to the states and localities — to we, the people.  Now what we need is a detailed roadmap that teaches us how to reach that particular destination, especially useful for those who wish to get involved but have no real idea (and limited time to research it) about how best to take this idea about a movement and turn it into a working, grass roots operation intended to make the idea manifest in detailed,  step-by-step increments.

Or, if you prefer, what I’m proposing we develop is a Dummy’s Guide to Electing, Influencing, and Securing State Legislatures Willing to Work in the Best Interests of the States and their Sovereignty.

Unfortunately, my own reach through this blog is limited (not least because many of the “pragmatic” GOPers have made it so, alternately vilifying me and ignoring me, or using backchannel whisper campaigns to impugn my character).  So I ask that you, as readers, somehow pass this idea along to five other people, and have them do the same, until we can collectively come up with a kind of simple outline for how to begin the daunting and long task of rehabilitating the republic and re-establishing a constitutional system based around the idea of equality before a stable rule of law.

Thanks.  And please, pass it on.

Posted by Jeff G. @ 10:17am
108 comments | Trackback

Comments (108)

  1. [Both parties] are invested in their own self interests, first as incumbent politicians, second as power brokers, third as special pleaders for their various cronies and clients, and fourth as managerial technocrats willing to trade turns with Democrats managing an unwieldy and unconstitutional Leviathan whose various legislative and regulatory tentacles have strangled the states, reducing them to largely impotent appendages of federal power.

    Tangentially related, in support of outing the establishment Right for the statist shills they are: Republicans insisted single payer couldn’t have been Obamacare’s aim while the Democrats were saying outright it was.

  2. It is clear — and yes, I’m willing to debate any person from the right’s opinion complex — that DC is invested in DC solely

    I’ve long argued that the best way to solve the problem of Washington DC is to get rid of it – by decentralizing the capital.

    Put the Executive Offices, House, Senate, Supreme Court, etc. in different cities a minimum of 500 miles apart and at least 250 miles inland. While we’re at it, require the House and Senate to conduct business “virtually” via secure conferencing links from offices in their home districts or respective state capitals. Better still, require everything to be done in writing so as to make it easier to comply with public records laws.

    Granted, that’s got as much likelihood of passing as repealing the 17th Amendment, but it’s still worth making a GOP or TEA Party plank…

  3. Better still, require everything to be done in writing so as to make it easier to comply with public records laws.

    Combine that with a requirement that all of these official paper documents must be transported by mule-drawn carriage, and I think we might be getting somewhere!

  4. It is clear — and yes, I’m willing to debate any person from the right’s opinion complex — that DC is invested in DC solely, that the federal government, and both parties who comprise it (with few very obvious exceptions: the GOP establishment, for example, will simply not back conservative candidates, even though it is conservative lawmakers, and those running for such positions, who are working overtly and unapologetically to try to reverse course on a tyrannical centralized concentration of power), are invested in their own self interests, first as incumbent politicians, second as power brokers, third as special pleaders for their various cronies and clients – See more at: http://proteinwisdom.com/#sthash.nuVbJ10N.dpuf

    I’m expecting a fair level of skepticism from those here, but I’m completely on board with this. IMHO, the problem with Washington isn’t the ideological battles between left and right, it’s the corruption that keeps those battles from really honestly happening. Instead, the left and right tend to co-opt the language of their base to package the agenda of their supporters.

    As you all know, I don’t hate government. I’m not opposed to paying taxes and receiving services. However!, I would greatly prefer that happen at a more local level. I’ve said for some time that I don’t need a tax cut. I need a tax flip. Today, 2/3 of my taxes go to the feds, and 1/3 goes to the state. I’d greatly prefer if 2/3 of my taxes went to my state and 1/3 went to the feds.

    I would be much more pleased with a country where blue states were free to get even bluer, in terms of policy, and red states are free to get much redder.

    Very large companies tend to not get fixed (Sears), they tend to get replaced (Target, Walmart). There’s no fixing the federal government. We need to largely obsolete it.

    I’m in, if you’ll have me.

  5. Combine that with a requirement that all of these official paper documents must be transported by mule-drawn carriage, and I think we might be getting somewhere!

    It’s what they had during the time those Dead White Guys wrote the Constitution. If it’s a good-enough argument for gun prohibitionists, it should also work here…

    (Actually, I meant electronic communications as text, rather than voice/video, so as to make it easier to perform searches against archives. Still, it’s not entirely a bad idea…)

  6. When one surveys the Republic and sees how the tumor of Progressive philosophy has metastasized, it’s easy to despair and sit on the couch to wait for the end. Of course, that’s no help. Success will require lots of people who instinctively know something is wrong together with small, discrete things which individuals can do. My own current fixation is on public education. I tell everyone I know with children to get their kids out of the public system as quickly as possible and sacrifice to send them somewhere else or home school them. Granted, it does nothing to eliminate the immediate problems in our body politic, but until we regain control of education in this country, our best efforts are doomed. There will always be a new, indoctrinated generation waiting in the wings, ready to fuck things up again.

  7. First, convince your wife that when you said you “absolutely, positively, would never get involved in politics, PERIOD!” it was with the understanding that there would of course be exceptions if your current politicians weren’t up to the newly mandated standards…

    Second, ask your best friend if you can stay with him for a while.

  8. nice start steve. I can never understand why my more progressive friends believe DC has the solutions.

    If you have to have socialized medicine, why do you want it managed by bureaucrats 3000 miles away?

    Why send cash to DC and then have your representative have to beg for the cash back?

    I would much rather worry about what my state legislature was up to than to be distracted by the DC circus.

  9. One point I’d like to make: seems all of the large, overpopulated slumburgs are, as their population swells, increasingly progressive. As far as I know, one has to go to Texas to find a large city that’s not sickenly progressive.

    Quick g00gle smartphone search attempt to disprove that nets this..

    http://americancityandcounty.com/content/study-ranks-americas-most-liberal-and-conservative-cities

    Not expecting to find that study’s correlation…

  10. ” The list of Americas most liberal cities is dominated by cities with large African American populations that are concentrated in the Northeast, Midwest and California.”

    “Conversely, the study found that the staunchest conservative cities are clustered in the South and interior West and have extremely low numbers of African American residents.”

    Detroit, MI, and Provo, UT, epitomize Americas political, economic and racial polarization, says Peter Thai, a BACVR researcher. As the most conservative city in America, Provo is overwhelmingly white and solidly middle class. This is in stark contrast to Detroit, which is impoverished, black and the most liberal.”

  11. Steve, before we’ll have you, how about those credentials?

  12. I would be much more pleased with a country where blue states were free to get even bluer, in terms of policy, and red states are free to get much redder.

    Methinks we have among us a betting man; hellomynameishighroller is betting the bluer-getting states will prosper better than the redder-getting states, and hopes to reap so much in bragging rights that he’ll wind up in a higher bragging-rights tax bracket.

    We’ll first need a binding mutual agreement on how “prosper” is defined, with a good balance struck between aggregate gross state product, aggregate per-capita tax burden, the contrasting definitions of liberty separating classical liberals and progfascists…

  13. …and, I think, per-capita word count in the states’ statutory and regulatory digests as a tie-breaker, if needed.

  14. (Never propose a creative wager with a former pre-law undergrad.)

  15. Portland is pretty white and liberal.

    I think it is clear why many black folks left the Southern cities (although I know many are still there so I am not sure of study), as for the middle part of the country with smaller black populations, I do not think there were many black folks to start with and not much to attract them to these areas in the 20th century.

  16. He who dies with the most laws on the books, is still dead.

  17. As far as I know, one has to go to Texas to find a large city that’s not sickenly progressive.

    Ah no, serr8d. cf: Dallas and Houston, regularly featured on “The First 48″. Further Houston is home of Sheila “Moon Rover” Jackson Lee.

  18. Portland is pretty white and liberal.

    I’ve spent a little time in Portland. It’s pretty, all right. It’s largely populated with so-called Caucasians too. But liberal? Ha!

    I was there in ’02 to help a friend with a couple of renovations on his house, so down to the City services dept. we went to obtain his “permits”.

    While there, I went out to the sidewalk to smoke a cigarette, whereupon a disembodied voice comes from a loudspeaker mounted on the facade of the City services building informing me that I was not permitted to smoke in that location. Outdoors. Move on, said the voice, you aren’t welcome here.

  19. sorry, sdferr, you’re right, I have brainwashed into using liberal in the “progressive” sense.

    next time light up a medicinal joint ;)

  20. He who dies with the most laws on the books, is still dead.

    True, but the more laws he leaves behind, the longer he can keep voting.

  21. Getting back to more practical advice: You first have to build a small team that can get the ball rolling. Recruiting three million people to your cause is absurdly improbable; recruiting half a dozen just takes a bit of legwork. And half a dozen turns into a dozen, which becomes three dozen.

    Now, with three dozen committed individuals, you can take over the world. Any question you have, any problem you run into — one of your peers will know the answer, or know the people who can help. Need to make a lunch appointment with a legislator you suspect might be sympathetic? One of your people will know a guy. Need to print posters and bumper stickers to give away at the County Fair? One of your people will know a guy. Looking to get on the afternoon drive-time talk radio program? One of your people will know a guy.

    So before you set yourself to take over your state legislature, first make an effort to identify and recruit half a dozen clever, committed people. Get together for a few beers, compare your contact lists, and brainstorm your next steps. And for the love of God, try to find a leader who puts the cause above his own ego.

  22. Sometimes I think big city politicians keep adding progressive policies in a frantic attempt to “keep up with the Joneses”.

    They are always going to conventions, seminars, etc meeting other big city politicos and they feel have to have something to offer. Fill potholes, reduce crime, yawn. Light rail and bicycle lanes, wow, how progressive. Garbage audits, way to save the planet!

  23. The plantation analogy is apt.

    I just now looked in Google Earth and the plantation-wanna be-type house that was in Bossier City Louisiana is gone. So is the very long stable beside it and so is the barn behind it and so are the seven tiny cabins between them that were made of the same oddly hollow ceramic brick that made perfect compartmentalized housing for rats. All gone.

    Near the property, right beside it, lived an old woman in a tiny tin roof cabin, a hut, and animals running around, chickens, turkeys, and such, pigs in a slop pen. My friend and I passed on our way to Red River to a treehouse in a pecan tree on this side of the levee so we got to know her. All that is gone. It occurred to me much later, and most likely occurred to Eddie too, the woman is what remained of a sharecropper family who moved off the proper pecan plantation to take up on their own, so far away as right next door. On the same pecan orchard property. The same pecan orchard divided out for the houses we lived in on the other side of the highway away from the river.

    Too old then to be alive now but no doubt if she were and if she were voting, both her and her husband, two quite impossible ifs, still there is no doubt she and her husband would certainly have voted Democrat, voted to stay on the plantation. This is how I see the effectiveness of the most cynical and successful crime syndicate in history, in my humble viewpoint.

  24. Pingback: VodkaPundit » A Fine Idea

  25. There is a Dashiell Hammett story where the Continental Op character finds himself in a small European country where he pretty much pulls off a political version of a Red Harvest scenario. Somewhere in it he or someone else considered insightful says that many people prefer to be ruled explaining the lack of interest in a revolution.

    Ten years ago when I read the story I didn’t think much of the idea of people preferring to be serfs. Now I am not too sure. It is not just laziness, it more like not wanting to be held responsible. Immaturity.

    Actually I think immaturity explain many bad things.

  26. So where do we start? Should we draft a letter that people can send to their representatives?

    Methinks we have among us a betting man; hellomynameishighroller is betting the bluer-getting states will prosper better than the redder-getting states, and hopes to reap so much in bragging rights that he’ll wind up in a higher bragging-rights tax bracket. – See more at: http://proteinwisdom.com/?p=51749#comments

    I do think the blue states would turn out better than the red states, but that’s the beauty of this arrangement – so long as we agree on the problem (the increase in power and reach of a corrupt federal government), and the solution – we can happily disagree about what will happen when that government is neutered and power is returned to the states.

  27. Argh. The Wan is speechifying in Boston in front of a sycophantic crowd of morons.

    When will our long national nightmare be over?

  28. “Before Obamacare these crappy plans* were dropping thousands of people a year! Now they’re dropping everyone!”

    *like plans that don’t provide contraceptives and maternity care for men.

  29. so long as we agree on the problem (the increase in power and reach of a corrupt federal government), and the solution –

    You’ve been touting the wonders of the greatest federal power grab in American history for (in your current incarnation) weeks now. Pardon me if I think you’re full of shit.

  30. At least he’s dropped the line about yanking out tonsils and sawing off limbs. For the profits!

    What is it with libs that they can never have a sane conversation about anything? They always craft the most horrific or the rosiest scenario and run like the wind with it. If you disagree with them, why you are obviously a delusional fool!

    I can’t stand it.

  31. Steve isn’t interested in anything except monkey wrenching whatever we do here, after reporting back to his group leader.. An OFA operative, I’ll warrant. Probably a higher level plant than those sent before, given his feigned congeniality.

  32. steve isn’t tall enough to ride this blog.

  33. You’ve been touting the wonders of the greatest federal power grab in American history for (in your current incarnation) weeks now.

    Pablo raises a pertinent point, hellomynameissudden180

  34. The saddest thing about the talk about making healthcare affordable, if by some miracle they could make that true, they have no intention of leaving that cash in the pocket of the working man or entrepreneur.

    It is like when they went on about the cost of the Iraq war. The lefties never said anything like “wouldn’t you rather spend that money for yourself and your family rather than letting bush buy bombs”.

  35. But, bgbear, all our monies will be confiscated and then a little bit given back with a flourish! Surely that changes everything, amirite?

  36. right leigh, like a bully that steals your lunch but, let you keep the carrot sticks. That other stuff wasn’t good for you anyways, he did you a favor.

  37. “igh says October 30, 2013 at 2:30 pm
    steve isn’t tall enough to ride this blog.”

    From your lips to Jeff’s ears.

  38. the le got cut off from leigh some how (my fat fingers).

  39. Standing Rules of Rogers’ Rangers

    Hopefully you’ll include these in your guide.. You know, just in case playing by the rules don’t work…

  40. Bigbear @ 10:56

    You’re being played.

  41. maybe, Mueller but, I am not here to play games or make new enemies. I am here to exchange information and throw new ideas out to see if it makes sense to a group I trust will judge the idea fairly.

    If someone like steve gives me a thought, I may run with it. I have criticized steve’s intellectual dishonesty before and I will no doubt have to do it again.

    -bg (no “i”, I am pretty small as far as bears go)

  42. the framer’s [sic] intent, namely, to give state legislatures a voice in the Senate by way of state chosen representatives open to recallSadly, that was not quite the framers’ intent, or at least what intent can be imputed from their actions.

    The Constitution as originally enacted provided for Senators to serve terms six times as long as the terms for members of Congress under the Articles of Confederation. It provided no “recall” mechanism under which a state legislature could fire a sitting Senator during his term, leaving the sole power of removing same to the Senate itself.

    When we set about amending the Constitution to repair the breach created by the 17th Amendment, I believe we ought to go further, and explicitly empower state legislatures to remove a Senator by a 2/3 vote of one chamber and a majority of any other chambers it may have.

    This somewhat-cumbersome wording allows for Nebraska’s unicameral legislature and any other states that come to the realization that the “one man one vote” rule effectively makes bicameral legislatures redundant. We need another amendment striking down that rule, and allowing states to create sub-federal systems of their own.

    I also want to emulate the Articles of Confederation in another way. It limited any individual’s service in Congress to no more than three of any consecutive six years. I have proposed the Grover Cleveland Amendment to prevent any President, Senator, or Representative who takes such office with at least one year remaining on the term to serve in the same office’s next term. No more incumbents running for re-election. Go home for two/four years, and ask for another term if you think you want another go at it.

    Yes, this means virtually the entire membership of the House of Representatives (excluding only those elected in special elections to fill late vacancies) would turn over every two years. This is a feature, not a bug.

  43. /me wants preview back

  44. The relevant term of service in the Articles of Confederation (Art. V)?:

    ***V. For the most convenient management of the general interests of the United States, delegates shall be annually appointed in such manner as the legislatures of each State shall direct, to meet in Congress on the first Monday in November, in every year, with a power reserved to each State to recall its delegates, or any of them, at any time within the year, and to send others in their stead for the remainder of the year. ***

    Hence the six-fold length of the Senator’s term under the Constitution.

    ………………………………………………………………….

    There may be a further consideration regarding the representatives, though I don’t make it here save to point to it: namely, the number (I believe Ric Locke was one who looked at this matter), and the (human) distance from knowledge of or from interaction with the representative that may be incurred by the represented due to the lengthening ratio this (frozen) number can cause. It’s a kind of metaphorical human scale problem, seen in the massive architecture of a district of skyscrapers as over against four story brownstones.

  45. You’ve been touting the wonders of the greatest federal power grab in American history for (in your current incarnation) weeks now. Pablo raises a pertinent point, hellomynameissudden180… – See more at: http://proteinwisdom.com/?p=51749#comments

    Fair enough. I’m a supporter of Obamacare because it’s the least bad choice. The available choices seemed to be:

    1. Do nothing
    2. Do Obamacare

    I don’t think Obamacare is worse that “do nothing”. But I don’t think it’s the best possible solution ever. It was largely written by the insurance industry and the public option was dropped. But I think it will make healthcare more efficient, increase competition, and reduce costs, increase the number of people covered, etc. Insurers were willing take more top-line revenue in exchange for squeezed profit margins.

    Now, (the collective) you and I see this very differently. From your seat, O-care is just going to make healthcare much worse – more costly for less benefits.

    For the purposes of this discussion (teaming up against government corruption) it doesn’t matter who’s right. Because…

    O-care precludes a state like Oregon from ever going single payer. It precludes Texas from going the opposite direction in regards to healthcare. And personally, I don’t actually care how Texas and Florida and Mississippi tackle this. I hope they all tackle it differently and we’re able to see what actually works and what fails spectacularly.

    Oregon can never have the tax base it needs to tackle big issues with liberal solutions because the federal government greatly limits Oregon’s ability to tax with the much larger bite that the feds take first. Texas, likewise, is limited in how low it can make Taxes with the feds taking their big bite regardless of what Texas wants.

    I’m happy with Obama, but someday there’s going to be a Republican in the White House, and I already hate him. I would like the damage he can do to be limited. OTOH, I’ve been happy with the governors in Oregon for two decades. I’d rather give them my cash. I’m sure Texan’s feel similar.

  46. 1. Do nothing
    2. Do Obamacare

    See also “False Dichotomy”. Read this and get back to us.

    http://andstillipersist.com/2013/10/obamacare-and-the-three-errors/

  47. And there were LOTS of other options brought up, and summarily dismissed with the Royal “I Won”. He completely dismissed ANY alternative options, and lied, cheated, bribed and stole to get it passed, using yet more lies.

    The truth is coming out, now, and you won’t be able to spin reality away.

  48. >1. Do nothing<

    what was wrong with the former system again?

  49. there are all these millions of people who don’t have insurance…

    Of course, they DID have perfectly fine insurance before ObamaCare forced the cancellation of those policies. Good thing none of those people knew what was good for them and needed Obama to come along and sanctify their lives with decisions from on high.

    {/sarc}

  50. Hell, I can come up with two easy suggestions that will lower the cost of health care to both providers and consumers, but the Dems didn’t want to discuss easy things… that wouldn’t have given DC enough control over the lives of 320 million people.

  51. Some times the best answer is “Don’t do something! Stand there!”

    Our healthcare delivery system is unwieldy, but it is the best in the world. Everyone, regardless of his ability to pay, is treated and treated well.

    Obamacare has gutted that option.

    1. It forces doctors to work many, many hours with equally overworked nurses in understaffed hospitals. 2. Understaffing breeds carelessness and nosocomial transmission of disease.
    3. Staff are poorly paid with Ocare and the incentive of many eager young students to go into medicine—which is really a calling—to go into veterinary medicine or to leave the country to work in more rewarding environments. (The rich need doctors and they aren’t going to go to our increasingly crappy hospitals.)

    The problems are nearly too many to enumerate, but anyone with hospital experience can tell you that this is a bad thing. A very bad thing.

  52. Since when are mendacity and contempt [Do nothing] taken to be a proffer of good faith? Lose this creep.

  53. But I think it will make healthcare more efficient, increase competition, and reduce costs, increase the number of people covered, etc. Insurers were willing take more top-line revenue in exchange for squeezed profit margins. – See more at: http://proteinwisdom.com/?p=51749#comments

    Please review my comments on markets and get back to me.

  54. I don’t think Obamacare is worse that “do nothing”. But I don’t think it’s the best possible solution ever. It was largely written by the insurance industry and the public option was dropped. But I think it will make healthcare more efficient, increase competition, and reduce costs, increase the number of people covered, etc. Insurers were willing take more top-line revenue in exchange for squeezed profit margins.

    IOW: “I believe our problem is the increase in power and reach of a corrupt federal government, and I also believe that we should give them an enormous increase in power and reach because that’s the only one of the two options that Obama and the Democrats offered that ostensibly has a better outcome for some small number of people at some point, and has a direct effect on every American, despite there being other programs that have long existed and are designed to serve those very same people.”

    Nope, that’s bullshit. P.S. Regulation has NEVER increased competition or reduced costs and it NEVER will. Arithmetic, motherfucker.

  55. The problems are nearly too many to enumerate, but anyone with hospital experience can tell you that this is a bad thing. A very bad thing.

    But won’t it be wonderful when we all have equally miserable healthcare, except for the rich who will then be seen in places the less well off will have no access to? Of course, the latter part of that being the “social justice” problem this boondoggle was supposed to “fix.”

  56. Yes, Pablo. Just like the bad old days when people only went to the hospital to die.

    Unless they’re rich and then they can go whenever they wish. Just like the bad old days.

  57. The second nearly?successful attempt to call a convention
    arose out of the state legislatures’ desire for a balanced?budget
    amendment in the late 1970s and early 1980s. As was the case
    with the Seventeenth Amendment, pressure from applications
    requesting a convention led the Republican?controlled Senate
    to approve a balanced budget amendment in 1982 by a margin
    of 69 to 31.31 The amendment, however, did not have enough
    support to pass in the Democrat?controlled House

    link

  58. Two arguments are typically presented to support the view
    that the States are unable to limit the scope of a constitutional
    convention. First, commentators suggest that the text of Article
    V precludes the States from limiting a convention.64 Second,
    some have argued that the States have no constitutional grant
    of power beyond initiating a convention; thus, once a convention
    has been called, it is a federal proceeding beyond their
    control.65 The textual argument against the power of the States
    to limit a convention is based on revisions of the word
    “amendment,” changing it from singular to plural, in early
    drafts of the Constitution at the Philadelphia Convention, with
    the final text allowing states to apply for “a Convention for
    proposing Amendments.”66 It is inferred that this change was
    intended to preclude the States from limiting a convention to
    the discussion of a single issue or amendment, meaning that
    the States could call only a general convention.67 This argument
    fails, however, because the same plural is used to specify the
    method for Congress to propose amendments: Congress “shall
    propose Amendments.”68 The change from “amendment” to
    “amendments” in the Convention Clause was made after the
    plural usage for congressionally proposed amendments was
    added.69 The two clauses have similar language, stating that
    Congress “shall propose amendments” and that the States may
    apply for a “Convention for proposing amendments.”70 The
    common practice for Congress to limit itself to proposing single
    amendments on single issues at a time has never before raised
    any constitutional issues. It therefore makes more sense to in
    terpret the change of the word “amendment” to a plural form
    to mean that a convention has the same power as Congress to
    propose amendments, rather than being limited to proposing
    single amendments. Thus, a convention may propose multiple
    amendments just as Congress can, but it may also propose single
    amendments. This language should be read as expanding
    the possible roles of a convention, rather than limiting them. A
    convention can consider multiple issues and propose multiple
    amendments or be limited to a single issue.

    from above

  59. THE MODERN SIGNIFICANCE
    OF THE CONVENTION CLAUSE
    One may question the Convention Clause’s significance,
    since it has never been used to amend the Constitution. The
    Convention Clause has played an important role, however, in
    spurring Congress to amend the Constitution.80 Over the last
    forty years, state efforts to call a constitutional convention have
    come within one or two additional states of success.81 Moreover,
    a constitutional convention has tremendous potential as a
    way of proposing amendments that would enjoy significant
    popular support but that have not been proposed in Congress.
    A national survey conducted by Harris Interactive in 2005
    measured support for different hypothetical amendments. The
    survey showed that seven potential amendments received the
    support of sixty?four percent or greater of the population.82 The
    three most popular proposed amendments were a balanced
    budget amendment, an amendment requiring that judges only
    interpret and not make the law, and a congressional term limits
    amendment. The results are summarized below in Table 1.
    Four of the seven popularly supported amendments arguably
    share a common characteristic: they would adversely affect the
    power or interests of members of Congress.

    from above

  60. I think most people are coming to the conclusion that Obamacare is worse than “do nothing.”

    And very few of us here are at all surprised.

    But then, we are “rooting for ruin.”

  61. In the second method, if the legislatures of two-thirds of the states
    (34 at present) apply, Congress must call a convention to consider and propose amendments, which must meet the same 38-state ratification requirement. This alternative, known as the Article V Convention, has not been implemented to date. Several times during the 20th century, organized groups promoted a convention that they hoped would propose amendments to the states, or to “prod” Congress to propose amendments they favored. The most successful was the movement for direct election of Senators, which helped prod Congress to propose the 17th Amendment. The most recent, which promoted a convention to consider a balanced federal budget amendment, gained 32 applications, just two short of the constitutional threshold. When the balanced budget amendment campaign failed in the 1980s, interest in the convention option faded and remained largely dormant for more than 20 years.
    Within the past decade, interest in the Article V Convention process has reawakened: several policy advocacy organizations have publicized the Article V Convention option, particularly as an alternative to what they portray as a legislative and policy deadlock at the federal level. An important issue in the contemporary context is the fact that advances in communications
    technology could facilitate the emergence of technology-driven issue advocacy groups favorable to this phenomenon. The rise of instant interpersonal communications, email, and other social media helped facilitate the rapid growth of such groups as MoveOn.org, the Tea Party movement, and, most recently, Occupy Wall Street. These tools could be harnessed to promote a credible campaign in a much shorter time than was the case with previous convention advocacy
    movements.

    link

  62. Never, ever trust a Leftist.

    They have rejected Virtue, Morality, and Truth – all in the name of a system of ideas.

  63. Legislative Procedure
    Moving beyond the general agreement that a state application, in order to be valid, must be
    approved by the joint or concurrent action of both of its legislative chambers, further questions
    have been raised concerning the standards that would apply. These include
    • What margin is necessary for an application to be valid? Would a plurality vote
    be sufficient, or would a simple majority, or super majority be required?
    • Beyond margin requirements, would approval of an application petition require a
    majority of the whole membership, or approval by members present and voting?
    • Could the upper and lower chambers of the same state legislature adopt different
    quorum or vote margin standards?
    The historical record provides some guidance: a 1981 Congressional Research Service report for Congress found that states tended to require that their legislatures approve applications for an Article V Convention by the same supermajorities they impose for proposals to amend their own constitutions.65 Currently, 33 states provide that constitutional amendments be approved by a supermajority of both legislative chambers, with requirements ranging from three-fifths (60%) to three-fourths (75%) of the whole membership in both houses.66 This question was addressed in most of the constitutional convention procedures bills introduced in Congress in the 1980s and 1990s. Most earlier bills provided that “… the State legislature shall follow the rules of procedure
    that govern the enactment of a statute [that is, a normal state law]….”67 Later bills tended to differ, leaving the states to determine such requirements, e.g., “… the rules of procedure governing the adoption or withdrawal of a resolution … are determinable by the State legislature….”68
    Should the states extend any of their existing standards to applications for an Article V
    Convention? It may be argued that establishing clearly defined procedures and standards before considering a convention application might answer legal and constitutional uncertainties and reduce the likelihood of a successful challenge to the validity of an application

    link

  64. so that’s why the proggtards h8te alec

  65. Ignore the naysayers and if this will motivate you, do it.

    I’ve been trying to get conservatives to rally around a few principles since 2008 and I’ve gotten as much traction as an 18 wheeler with 30 tons in back trying to climb a 10% grade in January in Alaska with bald tires and a bad clutch.

    Conservatives just don’t have a ‘herd’ mentality.

  66. It may suffice if we can manage to scrape up some ancient American git-er-done mentality. God knows we’ve all got a lot to learn.

  67. Conservatives just don’t have a ‘herd’ mentality.

    Precisely so. Which speaks volumes as to how Barack Obama and the Democrats have ‘Community Organized’ a majority of brainless cattle to vote them in power, bringing certain ruination to this Republic.

    We needed a new frontier, as did the settlers who began anew on this continent. A damn shame we don’t have a way to leave Barky’s Leftist cows to herd together in their own piled knee-deep shit.

  68. Right McGehee – you want it to succeed, you’re just not surprised it’s failing.

    That’s news, ’cause I thought you guys were super against it from the beginning, cheered ever chance to repeal it, and were happy to shutdown the government and blow up the world economy if that’s what it took to bury the thing.

    But you were never rooting for failure. Never. Ever.

  69. Maybe if we all just clapped a little harder. Where’re my pompoms?

  70. We knew it would fail. That’s why we were against it. Rooting is for sports fans and people who don’t understand cause and effect.

  71. You think it’s wrong to hope that something so destructive to both liberty and our freedoms (not to mention our health care) fails? You actually want to surrender your freedoms to a faceless bureaucrat?

    You are being FORCED to buy something as a condition of your residency, whether you want to or not (at the point of a gun, no less), from a private third party who is under ZERO obligations to make you happy with your mandated purchase, because he only has to please that faceless bureaucrat (which erases any semblance of “free market”). When said third party decides to use his monopolistic powers over you (perhaps because of an unlogged phone call from some agency, a la IRS and political influence) to coerce you into “better behavior” (you don’t need those extra calories from that latte, comrade, so extra situps in the morning at Joyful Exercise, da?) and uses the old standby “it’s for your own good”, how much freedom will you claim to have?

    Your boy lied from the first time he stepped up to a microphone, and everyone on the right side of the aisle called him on it (instigating the immediate response of “racism” from all quarters), and so when his signature legislation, based on a lie, passed full of lies, and defended by liars, you think we should jump up and down and hope it succeeds?

    Which, fuck that. And you.

  72. Pablo, so if it works – i.e. we end up with millions more americans insured, and we bend the curve on the rate of increase in healthcare costs, then you’re all for it?

    Because I thought that even if it did everything hoped for, you still hate it because it makes people buy insurance, it’s federal overreach, you think it’s unconstitutional.

  73. Drum, you can totally root for it to fail. Just own that. Most of the people on here seem to be pussing out and saying, “Well, I’m only against it because I knew it wouldn’t work as advertised.”

    No, that’s not why you’re against it.

  74. Just own that.

    I totally root for it to fail, because that guy in the White House has a deeper tan than I do.

  75. Steve, failure of ACA was baked into that cake, as has been admitted by many who knew the long-term goals. Which overarching theme we’re traversing depends on how deep you want to dig into Barky’s dreams and schemes. Go deep enough, even you shallow, giddy Leftists might be chilled.

  76. No, that’s not why you’re against it.

    Okay, so it must be because we’re all secretly hoping for the White half of Barack to fail. Got it. Is is always race when you can’t understand the concept of freedom?

    By the way, why do you hate black people so much?

  77. No, that’s not why you’re against it.

    Then it’s time for you to explain his position to him, I guess.

  78. I am against even if it succeeds as defined above because I know the “saved money” would not go back into the pockets of individual citizens but, be used to further increase the size and reach of government. It is a deal with the devil.

  79. so if it works

    You can get almost anything to “work” if you throw enough money at it

    – i.e. we end up with millions more americans insured, and we bend the curve on the rate of increase in healthcare costs, then you’re all for it?

    In case you haven’t noticed the “working” part isn’t going very well. Millions of people previously insured are now uninsured with no likelyhood of insurance in the near future.
    As far as bending the curve goes… go back and read my comment on markets. If’ you’d like i can point you to a book with pictures.

    Because I thought that even if it did everything hoped for, you still hate it because it makes people buy insurance, it’s federal overreach, you think it’s unconstitutional.

    Because it forces people to do what they would otherwise not do. And yes it is unconstitutional.

    Do you think it is good to use the state to force people to spend money they’d rather not spend?

    – See more at: http://proteinwisdom.com/?p=51749#comments

  80. Of course we root for anything Obama does to fail, because anything Obama does is designed to make America fail.

  81. What we are not rooting for, and what you implied that we are, is for America to fail.

  82. Its called “projection.”

  83. Ear Leader’s favorability rating tanks to 42% today.

  84. Is it just me, or does hellomynameislocutusofborg seem to be a committee?

  85. No, it’s not just you. There are at least three of them that I’ve counted.

  86. I feel paranoid thinking people are assigned to websites but, not too much. Besides the change in writing style, temperament, etc it is also funny how they can disappear for a long time but, return when a particular trigger appears in the main blog. I assume temporary re-assignment to explain absence.

  87. Posting a trigger is kind of like calling tech support, then. It also explains the handle. “Hello, our name is Steve, how can we aggravate you today?”

  88. In one blog I follow, a certain troll always reappears if Hugh Hewitt or the National Review is mentioned.

  89. In one blog I follow, whenever a certain guest-blogger posts on anything remotely social-con, a certain griefer always loses his shit. Likewise if a certain former governor of Alaska is ever mentioned in a positive light.

  90. Oh! I don’t follow the Governor on her FB page, but she has a nice rant today. Someone should post it.

  91. true about the electric rodent but, I do not think he is is on anyone’s payroll.

  92. Heh. I went to find it and it’s on someone else’s blog. Whose, I haven’t a clue. Anyway, it’s a job for another today.

  93. McG, I think that Jeff and PWers should feel honored that we have a committee of OFA oafs assigned to keep an eye on use. Perhaps that’s why my gentle proddings for bona fides goes unanswered – they can’t keep their stories straight.

  94. For sheer chutzpah, the President closed his speech by praising America’s “rugged individualism.” Because nothing says “rugged individualism” like heavy-handed big government forcing individuals to buy a product they don’t want and arrogantly telling them they didn’t really like the product they wisely chose for themselves and could afford.

    Thanks for the infomercial, Mr. President. I don’t know anyone who wants your “ShamWow” product, but the IRS will make sure we call that toll free number or go online to order it right now…. well, just as soon as your impossibly broken $600 million website is fixed and your phones lines aren’t busy.

    https://www.facebook.com/sarahpalin

  95. Thanks, nr!

  96. Pablo, so if it works – i.e. we end up with millions more americans insured, and we bend the curve on the rate of increase in healthcare costs, then you’re all for it?

    I fucking love miracles. If millions more Americans are getting quality healthcare for less money than we’re spending now, I’d be for that. What you said is full of the sorts of rhetorical outs you progressive douchebags are famous for. Just look at the one your Messiah is currently trying to weasel his lying cocksucker way out of right now.

  97. we bend the curve on the rate of increase in healthcare costs

    That’s already happened — but not the way that was promised.

    Again, this was something we knew, and warned about. But helloournameislegion stuck their fingers in their ears and insisted that the cipher from Oahu/Indonesia/Illinois had to be right and the multitudes who knew about arcane things like math and human behavior, not so much.

    But, you know, that’s because we were “rooting for ruin.”

  98. I’ m beginning to think that Steve ain’t all that bright.

  99. They jargon you guys use really fucks with the keyword scanner. Please us only obamacare, aca, obamascare, romneycare. Also, when typing the name of dear leader, please stand.

  100. It’s a little to be drinking, steve.

  101. That was a junior committeesteve clone in training, leigh. Probably in a time zone where the sun was well over the yardarm. Drink up, me hearties!

  102. Just curious, and maybe I have missed it, but where exactly would you prefer that this “crowd sourcing” take place? As well, a private contact, maybe in the body of your post, would be useful. May be some back roads you don’t want on the map, or others that are a welcome surprise shortcut, saved for the print, that might otherwise be coopted and prematurely congested… Thanks

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