Nothing says you're serious like a hunger strike | Main | No Photos For You! White House Refuses To Release Scare Force One Photos
May 05, 2009

Randy Barnett's Bill of Federalism

I've been mulling this since yesterday. It's a more refined version of the federalism amendment Randy Barnett proposed last week. There are ten proposed amendments, and I can't excerpt them all so go take a look. I really like most of the suggestions, with the exception of these a few:

Article [of Amendment 4] [Recision Power of States] Upon application of the legislatures of two thirds of the states, any law, regulation or order of the United States shall be rescinded.

No and no. You want to change legislation, you elect different people to Congress. Letting a majority of states do an end-run around the entire system of federal governance is a big mistake. For example, if this amendment had been law, it's entirely possible that two-thirds of the states would have ended the Iraq War in 2006 and rescinded the War on Terrorism AUMFs.

There are some powers that we, as a People, have committed to a national government. Those powers should remain with the national government. The national government and the state legislatures have different interests. Tying them so closely together, actually making the national government no better than a puppet for highly contested issues is not what the founders had in mind and it does not "restore the balance" to government, as Barnett's preamble states.

Moreover, if Barnett's first and second proposed amendments are passed, the national government's current overreach will have ended and there'd be no need for this one. At most, if you want to give state legislatures a bit more say in Congress, repeal the Seventeenth Amendment and give them back the power to select Senators.

Similarly, the eighth proposed amendment, the balanced budget/line item veto, seems ripe for abuse. Fortunately, it seems unnecessary if the amendments rescinding the income tax and curtailing federal power pass.

What do you guys think? Barnett writes that this is still a work in progress. Do you have suggestions or modifications you want me to forward to him?

Oh, one more thing: I would like to see the Tea Party movement start to adopt this type of concrete proposal. This shouldn't just be about protesting futilely while President Obama drives this country over a cliff. Now is the chance to make revolutionary changes in our system of governance. Start with the proposal now and as things get worse (which I cynically expect them to, especially after cap and tax) many more people are likely to think, "Huh, maybe we can do something about it."

That's party of the beauty of this proposal. This isn't rocket science to explain. No income tax. No death tax. No federal meddling in state affairs. Term limits. No judicial activism.

digg this
posted by Gabriel Malor at 08:29 AM

| Access Comments

Recent Comments
redc1c4 [/b] [/i] [/s] [/u]: "Best barter materials: Liquor Little blue pills ..."

Weaning is hard: "I have a tennis friend who is the rep for PMC ammo ..."

NZFrank with a M2: "609 Posted by: NZFrank with a M2 at September 20, ..."

Martini Farmer: "> I bet you don't see many moving vans going from ..."

Anna Puma: "Yeah the Roswell Grays are really into probing...G ..."

Quint: "I bet you don't see many moving vans going from WV ..."

Tom Servo: "I believe back then the moving companies would tak ..."

whig: "Btw, at septemb, One, you can pull the bullets an ..."

irright: "My biggest problem with barter scenarios? (WHATEVE ..."

Jewells45: "Run NaCly! Run!!! ..."

Weasel: "Posted by: NZFrank with a M2 at September 20, 2020 ..."

Diogenes : "So apparently the Emmy's are tonight? Anot ..."

Recent Entries

Polls! Polls! Polls!
Frequently Asked Questions
The (Almost) Complete Paul Anka Integrity Kick
Top Top Tens
Greatest Hitjobs

The Ace of Spades HQ Sex-for-Money Skankathon
A D&D Guide to the Democratic Candidates
Margaret Cho: Just Not Funny
More Margaret Cho Abuse
Margaret Cho: Still Not Funny
Iraqi Prisoner Claims He Was Raped... By Woman
Wonkette Announces "Morning Zoo" Format
John Kerry's "Plan" Causes Surrender of Moqtada al-Sadr's Militia
World Muslim Leaders Apologize for Nick Berg's Beheading
Michael Moore Goes on Lunchtime Manhattan Death-Spree
Milestone: Oliver Willis Posts 400th "Fake News Article" Referencing Britney Spears
Liberal Economists Rue a "New Decade of Greed"
Artificial Insouciance: Maureen Dowd's Word Processor Revolts Against Her Numbing Imbecility
Intelligence Officials Eye Blogs for Tips
They Done Found Us Out, Cletus: Intrepid Internet Detective Figures Out Our Master Plan
Shock: Josh Marshall Almost Mentions Sarin Discovery in Iraq
Leather-Clad Biker Freaks Terrorize Australian Town
When Clinton Was President, Torture Was Cool
What Wonkette Means When She Explains What Tina Brown Means
Wonkette's Stand-Up Act
Wankette HQ Gay-Rumors Du Jour
Here's What's Bugging Me: Goose and Slider
My Own Micah Wright Style Confession of Dishonesty
Outraged "Conservatives" React to the FMA
An On-Line Impression of Dennis Miller Having Sex with a Kodiak Bear
The Story the Rightwing Media Refuses to Report!
Our Lunch with David "Glengarry Glen Ross" Mamet
The House of Love: Paul Krugman
A Michael Moore Mystery (TM)
The Dowd-O-Matic!
Liberal Consistency and Other Myths
Kepler's Laws of Liberal Media Bias
John Kerry-- The Splunge! Candidate
"Divisive" Politics & "Attacks on Patriotism" (very long)
The Donkey ("The Raven" parody)
Powered by
Movable Type 2.64