A Proposed 28th Amendment to the Constitution ~ Obstructionism in Progressive Clothing

I don’t care if members of Congress are Democrat, Republican, Independent , Liberal, Conservative, Progressive or whatever. The self-serving must stop.

March 14, 2010 — I received another viral e-mail this morning, one asking me to forward the same message on to at least twenty people. Perhaps you have received a copy of it yourself. It embodies a sentiment commonly expressed by persons who are opposed to health care reform. The message reads as follows:

“For  too long we’ve been complacent about the workings of Congress. Many citizens had no idea that

  1. Congress members can retire with the same pay after only 1 term.
  2. They don’t pay into Social Security.
  3. They specifically exempted themselves from many of the laws they have passed (i.e. being exempt from fear of prosecution for sexual harassment).

Congress’s latest game is to exempt themselves from the Healthcare Reform Bill being considered. This isn’t logical. We don’t have an elite that’s above the law.

I don’t care if members of Congress are Dem., Rep., Ind. , Lib., Con., Prog. or whatever. The self-serving must stop. The proposed 28th Amendment to the US Constitution (below) would do that. This is an idea whose time has come.

Proposed 28th Amendment to the US Constitution: Congress shall make no law applying to citizens of the USA that does not apply equally to Senators & Representatives; and Congress shall make no law that applies to Senators & Representatives that does not apply equally to citizens of the USA.

This is fair, to the point & non-partisan. The only ones who would be against it are members of the Congress!”

Sound reasonable? Sure it does. As Sara Palin, playing to the pent-up resentment of Tea Partiers, would say, “You betcha.” And, on the surface, I agree with the concept. But the author is wrong. More than just members of Congress would be against it. I am against it. I am against it as a priority at this time because it is unreasonable to expect Congress to ever consider even debating such an amendment? Read what Snopes.com has to say about it.  The URL is http://www.snopes.com/politics/medical/28thamendment.asp.

It sounds good, much like the idea of term limits for Congress sounds good, but it’s nothing that the Congress of the United States would ever consider, many members thereof truly being self-serving as the author of the message has pointed out. So, the only way this, kind of common sense proposal for a Constitutional amendment can ever become law is by way of the grassroots alternative to amendments, a national convention such as is provided by Article V of the Constitution. But amending the Constitution this way is very, very difficult. In fact, it’s never happened. Congress has proposed amendments to the Constitution on several occasions, at least in part, because of the threat of an Article V convention. Rather than risk such a convention taking control of the amendment process away from it, Congress acted pre-emptively to propose the amendments instead. At least four amendments (the Seventeenth, Twenty-First, Twenty-Second, and Twenty-Fifth Amendments) have been identified as being proposed by Congress at least partly in response to the threat of an Article V convention.

So, argue about this first, Congress exempting themselves from laws and voting raises for themselves, and health care reform will never happen, nor would anything else in the public interest. Which, by the way, is exactly what the health insurance industry and Republicans, for purely political purposes, want. Looked at in the full light of day, this is just another salvo from the right aimed at sinking President Obama’s agenda for change.

Maybe if the Tea Party and the new Coffee Party combine their growing voices to lobby enough state legislatures, things like this will someday come to pass. But don’t hold your breath. In the mean time, let’s not inhibit progressives’ efforts to pass laws that will benefit all/most Americans, laws that will help to prevent the wholesale takeover of our One Nation Under God by corporate profit interests.

Please feel free to post a comment.

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Published in: on March 14, 2010 at 10:58 am  Comments (8)  

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  1. For reference. All 50 states have already submitted over 700 applications for an Article V Convention call which Congress, despite the mandate of Article V, has refused to call. The applications can be read at http://www.foavc.org. Even today the states are considering more applications to submit to Congress. The only effect of this effort will be that it will only show even more how much Congress refuses to obey the Constitution.

  2. Congress obviously is paranoid about setting a precedent that would serve to undermine their power to control and to stay in control.

  3. I agree that energy used on this far fetched amendment would keep be a distraction that Palin and co., would enjoy. It would give them something to jabber about and take away from the changes that really need to be made. The reguolations and laws invoked do not reach the level of needing a Constitutional Amendment.

  4. Here is my 2 cents. The only way that the USA will ever have TRUE freedom, and equality, will be for it’s citzens to rise up and overthrow the present government. Walk in, tell all of them they’re fired. Not only fired, but like any one of us who has been out of work, they must start over as citzens, no golden umbrella insurance, no free ride retirement( they don’t pay a penny, not ONE, into social security).

    Then, allow decent folks, who are only ABLE, much less allowed, to spend say, $1,000,000.00 to get themselves elected, to ANY office. then, we can start fresh, with uncorrupted people.

    We are supposed to have a government run, of the poeple, by the people, for the people. What he have, is a government, run BY the corporation, FOR the corporation. No more big money backing from industry, and especially NOT oil companies. No more “lobbyists” a fancy term for extortionists.

    It is time to celan up our own back yard. Unfortunately, you will never find 5 people, with the means, and the will to do this, and get them to agree on how. Therefore, we are doomed to the same fate as the Roman Empire, The Pharoahs, and every other great civilization. Welcome to our nightmare!

  5. Yours is a growing sentiment among American voters today, Kaye. Unfortunately, the anger our dysfunctional government has caused is being exploited by a very scary bunch of people — extremists wanting to dismantle everything and let the wolves of corporatocracy http://www.heartcom.org/SupremeCoup.htm have their way with us.

    When you use the words, “… rise up and overthrow the present government,” it sounds very much like what we used to call treason back when the perceived threat was from the left. Now the threat is from the right with poorly educated, minimally qualified cooks running for offices all across the land and armed militias multiplying rapidly and planning all kinds of mischief. So, if al Qaeda doesn’t do us in first, we’ll do it for them.

    “We have met the enemy and he is us” — Pogo.

  6. Hello to all American Citizens of USA ;

    WAKE UP !! and vote out ALL !! of the A-Holes that are not working for our well being .

    I am age 64 and disabled and can not work and i am trying to Survive on only SSI .

    But SSI in California was Cut almost $100 in the last 2 years from $930 to only $840 per month now.

    And now i hear that Gov Brown will be cutting SSI to even Less because California is Broke !!

    Local Government in California is almost a Mirror of our Whitehouse Government with Highly Paid California Government Employess getting Pensions that Equal their yearly Salary when they were Working .

    What a SWEET Deal is that ???

    We the People are getting SCREWED every Dam Day and I am very worried that soon I will hear on TV ,, Sorry all you OLD people ,, but there is NO more $$$ to pay your Social Security ,, so just lay down and DIE !!

    Also here in California we have to PRAY there will not be a BAD Earthquake like what happened to JAPAN because we also have Nuclear Power plants built on or close to Quake Fault lines and they should be CLOSED !! ASAP .

    Or maybe California could become Polluted with Radiation fallout if a BAD Earthquake would damage the Nuclear Power Plants that are NOT !! built 100% strong enough to withstand Earthquakes .

    Then California would become a DEAD ZONE !!

    WHO would want to Live or Work in California or Buy anything made in California after a Nuclear Accident like what happened in Japan ??????

    How STUPID ! is our Government ??

    I am Depressed and I can hardly sleep any more because of being worried about the Future of myself , my Family ,, and our Country !

    I Pray every night that the People in USA will wake up and DEMAND and if needed FORCE our Government to do what is needed for the People of USA !

    Yes !! I could write a Book about what is Wrong with our Government , but what is really needed NOW – TODAY !! is for We the People to act quickly and Elect a NEW Government that will really care about We the People and not their own pockets full of $$$$.

    God Speed !

  7. it is unreasonable to expect congress or this admin. to do anything good for americans at this point , I do not expect that they will ever do anything that is good for americans but only for themselves

  8. Sure does seem that way, doesn’t it?


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