THE SEEDS OF DISUNION PART II

If in fact the simple matter of agreeing to pay our bills is remedied and the United States of America can be open for business, the seeds of disunion are still there and need to be dealt with.

Our government is still dysfunctional and we need to fix what is broken. You would think that such an act as shutting down the government and coming close to defaulting on our debt would sufficiently chasten those who led the effort that led to one of the most amazing acts of political suicide ever seen in American political history. Whether or not any lessons were learned from the closing down of the government in 2013, remains to be seen. Frankly, the insanity that we have seen will probably continue and government by crisis is for the time being the order of the day. Elections used to settle these issues and hopefully the next election in 2014 will send a strong signal to those who would govern by hostage taking. The radical fringe need to be sent packing, but don’t count on it. Many of the Tea Party elected officials are in safe districts due to gerrymandering. 

A solution to the problem of gerrymandering is to take the drawing up of districts out of the hands of politicians and allow a commission of citizens to decide what the districts should look like.

California has led the way in this. Their commission drew up districts not only for Congressional districts but for the state legislature as well. The districts were drawn up based upon geography, and common interests. 

Safe districts defy the interests of the people and ensure that any extremist can be elected and feel safe enough to do and say anything they feel like without any fear of being thrown out of office.

America needs a strong two-party system. The danger now is that extremists have taken over the Republican Party. Extremism has no virtue. Senator McCain has jokingly said that the way things are going only family members and staff support the Republican Party. He was only kidding but the craziness that we see in the House of Representatives is destructive to the public’s confidence in their government. It is also not helpful to our image globally and it does not help our economy either.

In political science you learn that if each extreme goes as far as it can you wind up with either communism or fascism, none of us want that. Money has been used to fire up the fears that some citizens have in these difficult financial times. Violence and anarchy are possible when our political dialogue becomes so extreme, so heated, that we no longer listen to one another.

As James Madison warned, factionalism has destroyed other Republics and with the lack of bi-partisanship that we currently have the seeds of disunion are around us. The destruction of our nation as we know it is possible.

Beware of those who claim to be patriots and seek to change the Constitution to their own liking. There is a movement a foot now, that under the guise of saving the country, they would in fact, destroy it in the process. 

The seeds of the current movement towards disunion began as a result of the landslide defeat of Barry Goldwater. The Republican Party organized by funding conservative foundations and think tanks. The Heritage Foundation being one of them. Later talk radio and Fox TV became outlets for conservative thought and propaganda.

People like Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, and Mark Levin encourage the extremism from the pulpit of talk radio. The Koch brothers with their huge financial backing have an outsized political influence on those who do the work during the primaries that help choose today’s Republican candidates. Current elected representatives whether they are from the House of Representatives or from the U.S. Senate have felt threatened by extremism. Incumbents have lost their seats not from the opposition but from the Tea Party and their financial backers putting up candidates to run against people from their own political party because they have not towed the line of sufficient political ideological purity.

Conservatives love to complain about how the media is liberal, and how academia brain washes our kids. But the so-called liberal media is but a myth. Millions of people listen to talk radio and watch Fox News. The media and the reporting practices of Walter Cronkite and Edward R. Murrow have disintegrated into corporate owned media that concentrates on entertaining people, rather than just giving the public just the facts. Real reporting and a reporter asking hard questions are hard to find. The BBC news does a better job of giving the news than does most of Cable TV. Conservatives have succeeded in indoctrinating a segment of the population to their way of thinking. During the last presidential campaign, the telling of outright lies became acceptable. The trend towards the politics of personal destruction has continued.

These modern-day conservatives have nothing in common with Edmund Burke’s view of what a conservative is nor do they have much in common with Barry Goldwater. They are reactionaries really. What is apparent is that in some conservative circles they see the reality of the direction that our voter demographics indicate for our voting future. They realize that white males in particular will not have the power that they have had in the past.

Their new idea to fix their problem is to change the Constitution by offering amendments to the Constitution. This is what Mark Levin’s new book, “The Liberty Amendments,” is all about.

The Heritage Foundation led by former Senator Jim DeMint and Mark Levin is seeking to remake history by having state legislatures call for a Constitutional Convention.

They use words like Statists to attempt to negatively brand those who believe that government is a positive force for change.

Levin in his recent book basically concedes that the march of history is against his view of the Constitution when he says:” The Statists have been successful in their century-long march to disfigure and mangle the constitutional order and undo the social compact.”

It is sheer arrogance to believe that man does not need rules and laws to govern our behavior, but he and others seek to roll back the present and return to a day when democracy was only for a few, the privileged few who owned property. They claim that laws inhibit individual self-interest. They claim that individual sovereignty is more important than the greater good of the community.

Their plan is to through the passage of constitutional amendments, the federal government’s power will be constrained, self-government will be re-established and individual sovereignty will be secured.

To call for a Constitutional Convention initiated by the state legislatures is the height of folly and it would be extremely dangerous to do so.

To think for one moment that we have anyone that approaches the genius of our founders is nonsense. Our Constitution may not be perfect but it will do. It has stood the test of time.

Benjamin Franklin said,” I confess that I do not entirely approve of this Constitution at present, but Sir, I am not sure I shall ever approve it.” Later in his speech concluding the Constitutional Convention he stated the following: ” Sir, I agree to this Constitution, with all its faults, if they are such: because I think a General Government necessary for us, and there is no Form of Government but what may be a Blessing to the People if well administered; and I believe farther that this is likely to be well administered for a Course of Years, and can only end in Despotism as other forms have done before it, when the People shall become so corrupted as to need a Despotic Government, being incapable of any other. I doubt too whether any other Convention we can obtain, may be able to make a better Constitution.”

I agree totally with his sentiments. Today we see these modern-day reactionaries, seek to undermine our government. They seek to gain through trickery what they can not win at the ballot box.

The seeds of disunion will continue until we the people send a message loud and clear that the corruption through the use of so much money to influence our representatives will no longer be tolerated. Money corrupts and a lot of money corrupts absolutely.

Through reforms we can return the power back to the people with campaign finance reform.

The reactionaries of today seek to emasculate our liberty through subterfuge and lies and through the use of a lot of money to try to blind us to their real intentions. It will be necessary in future articles to list these proposed amendments and to discuss what they might mean for we the people.

Our near default and the fact that our government was closed down should prove to one and all that we are too close to that despotic government that Benjamin Franklin warned about.

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