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For JTF's Reading Pleasure: "What is the Tea Party"

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Old 07-22-2010, 03:01 PM   #181
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Re: For JTF's Reading Pleasure: "What is the Tea Party"

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Originally Posted by saden1 View Post
How does adding another layer alleviate the motivation for soft corruption and the disregard the will of the electorate by politicians?
It isn't adding another layer. Having the citizenry vote on them was the extra layer.
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Old 07-22-2010, 03:15 PM   #182
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Re: For JTF's Reading Pleasure: "What is the Tea Party"

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It isn't adding another layer. Having the citizenry vote on them was the extra layer.
Original Constitutional method:
1. Populace elects State legislature.
2. State Legislature elects Senators.

After the 17th Amendment:
1. Populace elects Senators.

Looks like we lost a layer to me. Maybe I am just overanalyzing it.
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Old 07-22-2010, 03:23 PM   #183
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Re: For JTF's Reading Pleasure: "What is the Tea Party"

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Gotta tell you, after a couple of days of reflecting on this I find myself siding with you 99%. The other 1% was simply unavoidable to some extent.

I've become increasingly frustrated with how this Administration has handled and defused the issue of race. Sorry Saden. It seems they are so concerned at offending white America and the talking heads that they end up pissing off everyone, throwing their own under the bus, and further polarizing the nation. The end result, in my opinion, is they end up practicing their own brand of racism. I think he needs to take some risks say what needs to said and let the chips fall where they may.

To spin this another way, if me and Obama lived in the same hood and I got in jam with either the feds or some dudes from another set, I'm not sure he would have my back. It f*cking pains me to say that, because here's a guy that found his political footing on the rough and tumble streets of southside of Chicago. Polls be damned, he's starting to lose street cred big time.

He's half-white Ivy League educated black guy. What exactly did people expect him to do? Transform race relations in America? And if he isn't helping it how is he hurting it? Whatever you do someone is going to be upset. To tell you the truth when I think of Obama his race (if you can call mixed a race) is just another fact and nothing more.
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Old 07-22-2010, 03:29 PM   #184
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Re: For JTF's Reading Pleasure: "What is the Tea Party"

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Or we could go back to the way it was, having the governors appoint the Senators. We both know that isn't going to happen though. I would love to have McDonnel recall tweedle-dee and tweedle-dumb.
The Constitution originally did not grant governors the right to select Senators, it was the job of the State Legislature.

U.S. Constitution. 1: Senate; Clause 1: Composition; Election of Senators.
The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each State, chosen by the Legislature thereof, for six Years; and each Senator shall have one Vote.

Pre-17th Amendment vacancies were filled by the State Legislature which, in turn, could allow the governor to appoint a temporary Senator until the assembly could hold the election. After the 17th Amendment, there were restrictions placed on temporary appointments and, as a result, some States have to allow the seat to remain vacant until it is slated for general election.
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Old 07-22-2010, 03:45 PM   #185
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Re: For JTF's Reading Pleasure: "What is the Tea Party"

The extra layer was originally there to have the Senate as a more powerful check on the House and on the Presidency, both elected by majority. However with states legislatures (elected from smaller more localized districts) appointing Senators it provides a powerful check to the "will of the majority". Appointment by state legislatures also reduces the power of the national party machines who influence senatorial elections.

Virginia is a perfect example. The two current state senators, elected by majority vote (strongest in Richmond/NoVA), are Democrats. However the VA state legislature is solidly Republican and IMO much more reflective of the entirety of the state.

Seventeenth Amendment to the United States Constitution - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old 07-22-2010, 03:53 PM   #186
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Re: For JTF's Reading Pleasure: "What is the Tea Party"

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Originally Posted by Slingin Sammy 33 View Post
The extra layer was originally there to have the Senate as a more powerful check on the House and on the Presidency, both elected by majority. However with states legislatures (elected from smaller more localized districts) appointing Senators it provides a powerful check to the "will of the majority". Appointment by state legislatures also reduces the power of the national party machines who influence senatorial elections.

Virginia is a perfect example. The two current state senators, elected by majority vote (strongest in Richmond/NoVA), are Democrats. However the VA state legislature is solidly Republican and IMO much more reflective of the entirety of the state.

Seventeenth Amendment to the United States Constitution - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Not entirely true this session. I believe the Dems have the state Senate. BTW this sort of thing is purely a product of partisan redistricting effort and you will therefore have the national party machine in the picture regardless of the changes you make.
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Old 07-22-2010, 03:55 PM   #187
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Re: For JTF's Reading Pleasure: "What is the Tea Party"

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Original Constitutional method:
1. Populace elects State legislature.
2. State Legislature elects Senators.

After the 17th Amendment:
1. Populace elects Senators.

Looks like we lost a layer to me. Maybe I am just overanalyzing it.
We did lose a layer, which was my point. The Senate had that extra layer for several reasons, but mainly a check against unabashed populist democracy. The Senate was and is expected to be more knowledgeable, skilled politicians (and despite the way I talk - truly skilled intelligent politicians are important especially in the areas of foreign diplomacy).

Would going backwards lead to soft corruption or other problems, probably, after all it wasn't changed because it was working perfectly. I suppose what I would like is a 60 year clause, after 10 cycles it goes to populace vote, then 10 cycles of state appointments, repeat. But that would be very silly. The main defense I have against the corruption argument, is that then the corruption would be more localized. the state legislature would be held accountable if your senators were not looking out for state interests at the federal level. Oil and banking interests would have to pander to individual state legislatures rather than one big democratic or republican pot.

Certainly it is not a cure all, but I go back to the division of power in the House and Senate, and then look at why the founding fathers set it up the way they did, and it makes a ton of sense to me, versus the false belief that the more the "people" vote the better. Pure Democracy is not a good government, and removing the State Legislatures' role in appointing Senators took us one step closer to it, and further away from the democratic republic we were.
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Old 07-22-2010, 04:11 PM   #188
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Re: For JTF's Reading Pleasure: "What is the Tea Party"

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Originally Posted by Trample the Elderly View Post
You sure do take up a lot of space to show you're a jackass. When that psychotic muslim started shooting our soldiers in Texas, weren't you the one who first thought how bad it would be for muslim's image? You didn't even give a shit about your own countrymen.
Bull. I challenge you to find any post of mine that remotely supports this assertion. My father proudly served in Vietnam and my brother also served. I have only the utmost respect for anyone who dons a uniform of our armed forces.

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Originally Posted by Trample the Elderly View Post
Yes I'm the problem. I'm the one: conducting the war on drugs, bombing people in Iraq who never did anything to me, stealing the tax payer's money and giving it to private banks, flooding the gulf with oil, sending all our manufacturing jobs to China. Yes, I did all of that because I'm a one man gang wreaking crew of destruction like Mr.T on crack. Yes you found me out. It was me and not the incompetent and greed of the Federal government. Also, I was the one who sent in troops to Yugoslavia. I also invented crack cocaine back in 1984 when I ran out of free base. Global warming occurs because I drive a Ford Van and run may air conditioner on high.
Wait for it.....

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You're solution is to have a more effective government. Mine is to have less power in the hands of the eff ups that caused these problems or allowed them to fester in the first place. More government isn't the solution, because if it was we'd not have the problems in the first place.
BAM!! And there it is - the JTF moment. I have never asserted that more government is the solution - in fact, I have asserted just the opposite. I also assert, however, that govt. can accomplish good things, and provide a unity for the 300 million of us that share this country. You, however, appear to reject that contention and would reject, out of hand, any solution that would require increased authority to the central govt. Not exactly conducive for developing consensus.

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Originally Posted by Trample the Elderly View Post
Oh, I'm a crack pot conspiracy theorist because I know the Federal Reserve isn't a part of the government and doesn't answer to it. You got me! I guess I'll have to retire my tin foil hat and stop learning how to do things. Government will do it all for me.
Your right, we should increase the central government's authority so that the Federal Reserve is responsive to the electorate... oh wait, can't do that b/c that will just give more power to people who eff' things up. ... okay ... We eliminate the Federal Reserve and allow private banks to do business in an unregulated market.... oh wait, can't do that b/c then those same banks will have an even freer reign to launder drug money.... we better pass some laws to regulate them.. wait....
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Old 07-22-2010, 04:12 PM   #189
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Re: For JTF's Reading Pleasure: "What is the Tea Party"

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...
What do you mean "removing, or restricting the use of federal funds as a club"?
Simply this,
ending, or severely limiting, the restrictions the federal government can use to tie up money.

The prime example that comes to my mind is federal highway funds. Let's say, for example that Md has 1% of the interstate and federal road systems. Then when budgeting, Md should get 1% of the federal highway funds, regardless of whether the people of Md have instituted a Click it or Ticket campaign, or what the speed limits the people of Md have allowed on their roadways, or what insurance dictates Md has instituted, or whatever other things the Federal dictates that we should do.
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Old 07-22-2010, 04:18 PM   #190
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Re: For JTF's Reading Pleasure: "What is the Tea Party"

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... Would going backwards lead to soft corruption or other problems, probably, after all it wasn't changed because it was working perfectly. ... The main defense I have against the corruption argument, is that then the corruption would be more localized. the state legislature would be held accountable if your senators were not looking out for state interests at the federal level. Oil and banking interests would have to pander to individual state legislatures rather than one big democratic or republican pot.

Certainly it is not a cure all, but I go back to the division of power in the House and Senate, and then look at why the founding fathers set it up the way they did, and it makes a ton of sense to me, versus the false belief that the more the "people" vote the better. Pure Democracy is not a good government, and removing the State Legislatures' role in appointing Senators took us one step closer to it, and further away from the democratic republic we were.
I agree with both bolded statements.

Interestingly, according to the Wikipedia article on the 17th Amendment, one of the arguments being advanced for its repeal - Senators are captives to special interests - was one of the reasons it was enacted in the first place.
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Old 07-22-2010, 04:27 PM   #191
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Re: For JTF's Reading Pleasure: "What is the Tea Party"

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...

I don't disagree with much of this - the concept that structure replaced the rule of law is a common theme among Roman historians (one wrote that, near the end of the empire, the majority of Roman law was one group of lawyers trying to close tax loopholes and another group trying to find new ones).

The main difference,however, is that, unlike us, Roman citizens were granted rights by the Roman Republic i.e. their liberty was given to them by the govt. and could be taken away by the same. Similar to the British Constitution, the Roman Republic's checks and balances derived from traditional governing bodies which, in turn, granted "rights" to those participating in them. In the US, we assert that the liberties were always ours but we will give some up to the govt. "in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity."

I believe this institutionalized difference is the fundamental difference between the US Constitution and all prior govts. dealing with massive, disparate populations.

The new Roman Aristocracy rose b/c they were given their "rights" by the govt. and were thus dependent upon it to retain those "rights". On the other hand, even now, we recognize that it is not the US or State governments that gave us our rights. Rather, even without a governmental "structure of society" we, and every living person on this earth, are entitled to the right of "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness". That simply was not true of the Romans or any other government before us.

So while we may learn from the Romans and their slow descent into Imperium, we need to recognize that there is a fundamental difference between the two governments.
I understand the difference you are pointing out. Yet, I feel like many of the New Deal/Social Support programs were designed specifically to create this same dependency on Government that created the New Roman Aristocracy. We call it the welfare state, but basically this new social structure is founded not on inalienable rights, but on the government's good graces and as it expands it creates more and more users who feel this sense of entitlement, derived not from God, a creator, or some inalienable right, but solely from the government which feeds them.
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Old 07-22-2010, 04:29 PM   #192
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Re: For JTF's Reading Pleasure: "What is the Tea Party"

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Not entirely true this session. I believe the Dems have the state Senate. BTW this sort of thing is purely a product of partisan redistricting effort and you will therefore have the national party machine in the picture regardless of the changes you make.
You're right the Dems did manage to slide a couple more seats in there.

There will always be the partisan redistricting going on. Overall the more things are localized, or in the case of term limits, power spread out over time with different people, it makes the national party machines/lobbyists/special interests jobs harder and requires them to burn up more resources....thereby weakening their influence. Once folks see the reduced power of the RNC/DNC, you'll also see their contribution levels drop, weakening them further.
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Old 07-22-2010, 04:36 PM   #193
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Re: For JTF's Reading Pleasure: "What is the Tea Party"

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He's half-white Ivy League educated black guy. What exactly did people expect him to do? Transform race relations in America? And if he isn't helping it how is he hurting it? Whatever you do someone is going to be upset. To tell you the truth when I think of Obama his race (if you can call mixed a race) is just another fact and nothing more.
And that's the way race should be treated across the board. Sadly, it's not that way and probably never will be.
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Old 07-22-2010, 04:41 PM   #194
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Re: For JTF's Reading Pleasure: "What is the Tea Party"

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I agree that he has been ill served by his inner circle, but I don't think I would have another group at my finger tips come 2012. David Plouffe is more or less running the re-election effort. So he's not involved in the day-to-day inner workings of the White House or advising on policy. Speaking of which, it takes somebody to beat somebody. And despite the hiccups we've had, Sarah Palin is still the front runner for the GOP 2012. That's great news. I've said it before, but there's no way she'll turn down the opportunity to bash and face Obama in 2012. She's just too in love with herself. On Obama's worst day, he'll beat her by a safe margin.

But my money isn't so much on Obama, as it is on David Plouffe. I've met him before, as all the others, been a few conference calls (national) with him, and I don't think there's a brighter mind out there when it comes to running a campaign.

My disenchantment is fairly specific, not across the board. In terms of policy and keeping campaign promises, he's doing pretty darn good. Although they're not getting enough credit.
I wouldn't be so sure about all that. His support amongst independents is plummeting. Last July, 52% would have supported him in 2012, that number has plummeted to 36% currently. In fact more independents (39%) would vote for an unnamed Republican than would vote for Obama. Those numbers have to concern Plouffe. The honeymoon has been over for a while.

You say it takes someone to beat someone. I wonder what would happen if Newt decides to run in 2012?

National (US) Poll * July 21, 2010 * Obama Approval Drops To Lowest - Quinnipiac University Hamden, Connecticut
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Old 07-22-2010, 04:42 PM   #195
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Re: For JTF's Reading Pleasure: "What is the Tea Party"

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I agree with both bolded statements.

Interestingly, according to the Wikipedia article on the 17th Amendment, one of the arguments being advanced for its repeal - Senators are captives to special interests - was one of the reasons it was enacted in the first place.
This makes sense. One point I think every person here (yes TTE and JTF also) will agree and concede. Those who represent powerful special interests will find a way to sway those who are elected to represent "the people".

This is why I said a cyclical approach would be interesting. When you put a damn in the water, it takes time for the new pathways to be carved, by opening the flood gates on a cycle, you can prevent those pathways from becoming carved to deep. If you had an alternating approach to Senatorial appointments, perhaps the dang lobbyists would not get as much of a chance to take hold.

While typing I wondered: what about a system where the legislature votes in a senator for the first 6 year term (thus having some concept of bringing in locally concerned politicos) and then having a state referendum at the 5 1/2 year mark. If the public votes the senator down, the legislature would then be tasked with appointing a new one at the end of the term.
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