srothstein wrote: ↑Sat Feb 06, 2021 1:08 am
I decided to repost this as a second draft. It has some things the recent news made me want to put in, plus Tam's advice on how to make term limits work including the bureaucrats. I also appreciate the other discussion and help with this. I am more than willing to listen to other suggestions, some of which I will accept and some I will decline. But I like the discussion. As a reminder, the goal is to save the US. I am trying to figure out how to fix what is wrong with our country as I see it and what could save it if we adopted it now. I don't think this could be passed, and I think the country is headed for either a civil war or a massive economic failure that will result in it breaking apart. I think we might be able to keep the country as a whole if this is adopted after the war/collapse.
This list still contains only the things I have thought of so far and may not be complete. I am still sure that everyone will find some parts in this that they will agree with and some that they will disagree with. I am not sure of the language of all of them, but this will get the general idea across:
1. In interpreting this Constitution, always interpret the guarantee of rights in the broadest possible terms and the granting of power to the government in the most stringent terms possible. All rights guaranteed by this Constitution include guarantees of the choice of how to exercise that right. Rights guaranteed in this Constitution are restrictions on government actions, not on private citizens unless the citizen is acting in a governmental capacity.
2. All rights in this Constitution apply to individual people and to groups of people equally. Rights may be restricted only for people who are involuntarily confined, either as a result of mental illness or as punishment for a conviction for committing a crime.
4. No governmental agency at any level may make any law or rule that discriminates against any person in any way for any reason, including but not limited to race, religion, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, age (other than having reached the age of majority), national origin, previous servitude, economic status, political affiliation, occupation, or personal relationships. All laws must treat all people equally, including applying to governmental employees and elected officials. Congress shall make a law that defines the age of majority for all federal purposes. Each state shall pass a single law that defines the age of majority for all non-federal purposes in that state.
5. Where this Constitution uses the term "commerce between the states", it means only business transactions that actually cross state lines. It does not refer to anything that "might affect" such transactions.
6. Where this Constitution uses the term "shall not be infringed", it means that no law or rule shall be made that restricts that right in any way, including a choice of how to exercise that right.
7. When this Constitution uses the term "promote the general welfare", it refers to the welfare of the country as a whole. This cannot be used to promote any individual's welfare, either as a single person or as a group. This includes laws designed to promote the welfare of each and every individual as individuals.
8. Congress shall set rules for elections to any national office, including President, Vice-President, Senator, or Representative. These rules shall include requiring proof of citizenship and identity, registration, and conduct of the election. Elections for state offices or offices in political subdivisions of states are to be run by the rules the state sets. No federal ballot may show any party affiliation or indication of incumbency. No person who is eligible for the office as defined in this Constitution may be barred from the ballot. All rules for placing a name on a federal ballot must apply equally to all persons, whether party affiliated or not or incumbent or not.
9. The President will be the person who gets the most votes in the electoral college. The Vice President will be the person who gets the second most votes in the electoral college. States may award their electoral votes either to the person who wins the popular vote in their state overall, or by splitting the votes by who wins each congressional district with the two electoral votes representing senators going to the person who wins overall.
10. Senators will be selected by the state legislature. The 17th Amendment is hereby repealed.
11. All taxes must be levied equally on all people or companies. Income taxes must tax all income equally. There shall be no exemptions and no deductions. The tax rate must be a flat rate for all incomes. Property taxes must tax all properties at the same rate with no exemptions or deductions. Customs Duties and Excise taxes may vary by the commodity being taxed or the nation of origin, but not by the company or person paying the tax. Property, including money or anything of value, that is inherited may not be taxed or counted as income.
12. No governmental agency may give any money or anything of value to any person, corporation, agency, or other government except for in payment for goods received or labor performed under a contractual basis. This does not exclude pensions or retirement benefits being paid to employees of that government. Pensions paid to elected officials shall be based on the same rules as used for any federal employee. Any currently existing program of distribution of money or things of value that is designed to aid the poor may continue for a maximum period of ten years to allow for a reasonable phase out of the program.
13. In exception to paragraph 11, the Federal Social Security program will be phased out in the following manner:
A. All people who are currently receiving benefits from the program will continue to receive their payments as defined when this amendment is ratified.
B. All contributions made by people who are over 30 years old and less than 50 years old when this amendment is ratified will be paid back to the contributor immediately. This includes both the employee's contribution and the employers' contribution. These people will not be eligible for any future benefits under the program.
C. All people who are over 50 years old and not yet receiving benefits under this program when this amendment is ratified will be given a choice of continuing to pay into the system and receiving benefits according to the current formulas (tax rates and benefits payout formulas) or receiving the payout as described in paragraph B.
D. All people under the age of 30 when this amendment is ratified will be excluded from this program in the future. They will not receive any refund of contributions and will not pay any further contributions.
14. No person may be a permanent resident of the district dedicated to the national capitol. The federal government will purchase any residences currently in existence in this area at the appraised tax value for the property, plus pay the resident a reimbursement for the actual costs of moving not to exceed $10,000. After this occurs, all federal agencies will be based in offices located in this district. This district shall not exceed in size the land designated as the district as of January 1, 2021. It may be reduced by no more than 25% of that size, with the land so excluded being ceded back to the State of Maryland.
15. The United States of America shall not hold or own territories outside the boundaries of the states that make up the nation. All currently held territories will hold a referendum for the citizens to decide between the territory becoming a state and the territory being granted independence. This referendum shall be held within one calendar year of the ratification of this amendment. Any territory voting for independence shall be established as an independent nation within one calendar year after the referendum. Once granted independence, the United States of America shall owe no obligation to the former territory. If the territory votes for statehood, it shall be admitted as a state within one calendar year of the referendum. The citizens of the state shall have full rights, privileges, and responsibilities as any other citizen of the nation. Territory that is conquered in war after the ratification of this amendment shall be held no more than ten years from when it is captured before being granted freedom and may not be made states.
16. A natural born citizen is any person born within the boundaries of the nation who has at least one parent subject to the laws of the nation, or who is born outside the national boundaries but has one parent who is a citizen of the United States of America. Congress shall make laws governing immigration into the nation and granting citizenship in it. None of these laws may discriminate based on the home nation of the immigrant. No citizenship can be granted to any person who entered or remained in the nation in violation of any law passed by congress.
17. The Bureau of Indian Affairs is hereby disbanded. All land contained in tribal reservations is given to the people of the tribe, either broken up as individuals or to the tribe as a whole. All state laws apply on these lands and the residents of the lands may not make their own laws unless the state allows the land to incorporate as a political subdivision of that state. Any funds held in trust for the tribes are divided equally amongst the members of the tribes.
18. Any state may decide to leave the union. To do so, the state must hold a referendum with at least 66% of the people voting agreeing to secede. If this occurs, the secession will be negotiated and take affect within one calendar year of the referendum. Citizens of the former state must choose whether to remain citizens of the United States of America or become citizens of the new nation. In this case, dual citizenship cannot be recognized. If a secession cannot be negotiated within the time period stated, the United States of America will remove all of its employees and removable property from the state. It shall retain ownership of any non-removable property owned by the government at the time of the secession. The state will then be granted independence and recognized by the United States of America. The United States of America will have no obligation to the former state other than reasonable taxes on the property it owns in the new nation..
19. All actions taken by any office of the government to enforce any law are criminal actions, and all rights in the Constitution apply. No government can create or maintain any law purporting to create a civil infraction.
20. The Code of Federal Regulations is hereby abolished. Congress is stated as the sole agency for making laws at the federal level and it cannot delegate that power to any other agency. Any federal law that needs interpretation will be interpreted by the courts, not by administrative or executive branch agencies.
21. All federal laws and agencies must be specifically authorized by one of the delineated powers assigned to Congress. Each law passed must specify the power authorizing it.
22. Other than evidence to be used in a criminal trial that is seized under the Fourth Amendment procedures, no agency of any government may seize any property without a court order after a trial with the owner present and just compensation to the property owner as specified in the Fifth Amendment..
23. The Supreme Court of the United States of America shall be composed of one Chief Justice and eight Associate Justices. If at the time of the ratification, the Supreme Court consists of more than 9 members, the excess justices will be removed from their position in reverse seniority order where the most recently appointed Justice is removed first. If the Chief Justice is removed as part of this reduction process, one of the nine remaining justices shall be appointed Chief Justice.
24. No person may be elected more than 4 times in total to the office of Representative. No person may be elected more than two times to the office of Senator, not may any person serve more than a total of 15 years as a Senator. No person appointed to any office by the President may serve any appointed office after the President that appointed him is no longer in office. All federal government employees who reach executive level positions in any federal agency will serve under a contract with a maximum term of two years. This contract may be renewed no more than one time. All federal government employees who reach management level positions where they supervise more than 1000 employees, either directly or indirectly, in any federal agency will serve under a contract with a maximum term of two years. This contract may be renewed no more than two times. All federal government employees who reach management level positions where they supervise more than 500 employees but less than 1,000 employees, either directly or indirectly, in any federal agency will serve under a contract with a maximum term of two years. This contract may be renewed no more than three times. Employees who reach the limit of their possible terms in management positions may work in lower level positions that do not meet the requirements for the contractual limits. Employees who reach the limit of their contract may not work again for the government as an employee. Limits described in this paragraph for government management or executive employees do not apply to members of the military services. No employee of the government who leaves the government may work for any contractor to the government in any position for a period of five years from leaving government employment. No elected official who leaves office may work for any government contractor for a period of five years.
25. All laws, rules, and regulations made by any agency of government apply only while within the boundaries of that government. Congress may pass laws governing the behavior of citizens of the United States of America while they are outside the boundaries of the nation. All restrictions on government actions in this Constitution apply to any action of the government, no matter where that action takes place.
26. Congress must pass a budget for each year. The fiscal year for the federal government must match the calendar year. Congress cannot pass any bills allowing continued spending in lieu of the budget. The budget must be passed as one budget governing all agencies, as opposed to separate budget bills for different agencies. The budget must be balanced with expenditures matching estimated receipts including loans and taxes received. Congress may borrow money only if there are specific terms for paying back the loan and the payments are included in the budgets until it is completely repaid.
I am sure I will find more things to put in this. I am trying to figure out how to word a section on banking and money. Anyone who sees other things we need to fix, please comment.