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Quick Fix: Senate

When the founders set up the federal government, they created two legislative bodies.  The idea was that one body would represent the people and the other would represent the state governments.  Since state governments were considered sovereign, they had to have a voice in the making of federal law, otherwise the federal government could erode that sovereignty over time. 

In 1913, after a long campaign by progressives such as Robert La Follette and William Randolph Hearst, congress passed the 17th amendment to the constitution which made senators elected by the public instead of by the state governments.  Once this happened, the senate was just another house of representatives with longer terms.  This means that the state governments have no say in what the federal government does. 

Now look at what the federal government does.  They pass massive unfunded entitlements for “the people” and then impose them on state governments who have to find a way to pay for them.  Naturally this leads to states going bankrupt which we are now seeing.  And the Feds. are heaping more and more on them while they’re already struggling.  It’s almost as if they want states to be in trouble…  The healthcare bill which passed the house yesterday apparently forces millions into Medicaid which is funded by states.  This is largely responsible for the “deficit reduction” that is claimed to result from the bill.  But how are states going to pay for it?  Well if you read my previous post in this category you know the answer.  The federal government will give them back some of the money that they take from their citizens.  But notice that we are crossing an important line here.  This federal money is about to go from being something that states would really like to have, to being something that they need in order to survive.  Once this happens, can we really convince ourselves that states are sovereign?

State governments need to be able to keep the federal government from doing this to them and the way to make that happen is to have them elect their senators again.  If we could get this done along with getting rid of direct taxation and the top down flow of money, then we would have a system that could work long-term.  That’s about all we need actually.  If I know me though, I will probably keep thinking of things and posting them.  Actually I’m thinking of a minor amendment to the constitution right now that would help a lot….

Categories: Quick Fix
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  1. June 9, 2010 at 8:23 am
  2. August 22, 2010 at 4:27 am

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