Monday, October 21, 2013


After the most recent budget debacle and those in power once again kicking the can down the road for a few months in order to avoid facing the hard cold fact that this country can not continue to spend as if it owns a money tree without dire consequences, it is time for the American People to face the fact that this nonsense must be stopped once and for all.

How can it be stopped is the question I usually get when this subject arises and when I give the answer, "TERM LIMITS", the conversation is suddenly over.  It's impossible to get Congress to vote term limits on themselves is the answer I usually get as they turn the subject to "electing the right people" as the way of stopping this nonsense.   This is indicative of the ignorance of the common folks in this country today combined with the continued spread of stupidity which is at epidemic proportions.  

There is a way to force Term Limits WITHOUT the consent of Congress .  How? U.S. Constitution, Article 5. It is a convention of the states for the purpose of proposing amendments to all the states. According to Article V, Congress must call for an amendment-proposing convention, “on the application of the Legislatures of two thirds of the several States”, and therefore 34 state legislatures would have to submit applications. Once an Article V Convention has proposed amendments, then each of those amendments would have to be ratified by three-fourths of the states (i.e. 38 states) in order to become part of the Constitution. 

Under the current Constitution Americans are not allowed to control the hold of the power of the elites.  This is  how the political class formed and how it legitimizes itself.   The "iron law of oligarchy" is illustrated by the process through which the American establishment took hold of power over time. It does not matter if a politician comes from a wealthy family for a poor one they will align with the power structure and become its stalwarts. Regardless of which faction is in power (red or blue) the structure is the same, the goals never change.

 Article I of the Constitution stipulates the terms of office for representatives and senators. Term limits for all three branches of government would mitigate, at least the danger of gerontocracy, which is as risky as the power of the immature and incompetent.  There are alternatives worth considering. Term in office should be limited.  To serve for terms, not to exceed six years, in Congress, and one term as president, increased from four to six years, would reinstate the Framers' intention that the people and the nation be served, not the person holding office.  Term limits could  make government more meaningful in that no person would accumulate excessive influence.  It might also help to avoid the perpetuation of the political class. Of course, a convention for a new Constitution should not avoid the issue of financing elections. For reasons of providing a level playing field, all legitimate candidates should receive equal financial support for their campaigns. All donations, however large or small, should be pooled and equally allotted to candidates. Money should never again buy a person's office.

I would suggest that via a contract with the electorate a commitment to the office and to performing as expected (and needed) would be in order. Failure to perform should have consequences.  The current  cumbersome impeachment procedures are not effective and not democratic. Rigor and integrity can be achieved through a rational procedure, disregarding party considerations. A president, a member of Congress, or a member of the judiciary who preforms miserably, who cannot live up to campaign promises, or who fails to live up to the exigencies of the office, runs the risk of losing office and the benefits associated with it.

I leave this for your thoughts and expression of ideas and will return to this subject in more detail on Thursday.   You may make comments here or on Facebook.

1 comment:

Vernon Huffman said...

I've been preparing for a Con Con since the 80s. Please check out some of my thoughts on the topic at