Category Archives: Attorney General

Bookworm Beat 7/22/20 — news in the world today

I have got the most ginormous list of news that interests me. Let’s see how much I can share, along with my opinions, before I wear you and myself out.

The sins of the fathers. The Bible is clear about visiting the sins of the fathers on the children:

Deuteronomy 24:16 — The fathers shall not be put to death for the children, neither shall the children be put to death for the fathers: every man shall be put to death for his own sin.

I’ve believed in that principle for decades. Long before America went crazy, I said it was a tremendous mistake for Germany and the rest of the world to make the children of the Nazi generation feel perpetually guilty about and responsible for their forebearers’ acts. It would, I said, warp them. Looking at Germany today — a country that commits cultural suicide with Muslim immigration while continuing to hate the Jews whom they blame for Auschwitz — I feel I was correct.

The left, unfortunately, likes visiting the sins of the father on the children, yet another way it roundly rejects the Bible’s universal wisdom. The whole point of the Black Lives Matter movement is to make people feel so guilty about the Civil War (over in 1865) and Jim Crow (confined to the South and over by 1964 at the latest), that they will willingly cede the country to Marxist radicals.

For that reason, I think Alinksy’s Rule 4 currently trumps even Deuteronomy. Rule #4, as you may recall, is “Make the enemy live up to its own book of rules.” And in that spirit, I’d like to direct you to two stories:

1. Senator Gary Peters (D-MI), who is white and who supports the historically inaccurate, America-hating 1619 Project, is running against black Republican John James (who is awesome). Normally, it wouldn’t be relevant what Peters’ ancestors did in 1865, but this year, the left has said that we are responsible for our forefathers.

That’s why it matters that Peters comes from a slave-owning family that sheltered John Wilkes Booth. I strongly feel that Peters needs to drop out of the race and give the seat to James, as a form of reparations.

2. And it super-duper matters that the uber-woke New York Times, the one that’s abandoned any pretense of reporting the news and is simply engaged in shilling for Black Lives Matter and Biden — all while making a profit — is built upon slavery. Yup. The money that got the Times started is slavery money.

It’s time for the Sulzberger’s (who refused to report about Hitler’s concentration camps and genocide) to walk away from the Times, from their bank accounts, and from their mansions. They need to give it all to Black Lives Matter and retreat to think about their inherited sins.

Conservatives fighting back. Charlie Kirk is pushing an initiative called DivestU. It’s actually what I’ve been saying for years, only Kirk has a bigger platform, more courage, and more panache. The idea here is that conservatives need to stop giving money to their Marxist alma maters. You’d think they’d have figured out that America’s colleges and universities are the birthplaces of the violence and insanity that’s playing out in America today. Defund the colleges!

Meanwhile, Antonio Sabato, Jr., who was a popular (and very handsome) working actor right up until he revealed he’s conservative, at which point he was forced to do construction work, wants to build a conservative Hollywood studio. Others have tried but maybe Sabato will succeed. I wish him luck because we need to fight back at the culture level.

Biden and China.  A few random points about China:

A woman who escaped describes what’s going on in China’s Uighur gulags and it’s really bad, with everything from torture to systematic rape to brainwashing.

China is engaged in organ harvesting, which is an appalling form of slavery.  Nevertheless, the American media and American businesses, all of which talk non-stop about how racist America is for slavery that ended more than 150 years ago, are ignoring the camps. Money talks and they’re tied to China’s money, not America’s.

Attorney General William Barr gave a great speech about China’s rapacious, dishonest, and dangerous policies regarding trade and intellectual property. China’s practices endanger the free world — and were made possible by our government turning a blind eye for decades. Thankfully, Trump is fighting back, not just with trade policies, but by shutting down the spying apparatus (see, e.g, Trump closed the Houston consulate today, which immediately went on a document-burning binge).

China’s economy is potentially on the verge of a serious economic collapse thanks to a property bubble that is (as Trump would say) yuuuuge. The faster we disentangle ourselves from China, the better for us. If they go down, we don’t want to go down with them.

And now, about Biden. Biden went on an insane rant, calling Trump “the first racist president.” His reasoning is that Trump calls a virus that originated in China and that spread because China lied about it, the “China virus.”

Trump and sane Americans understand what’s going on here. The Chinese people are not our enemies, nor is the Asian race our enemy. China, the country, though, is not our friend and is, in many ways, a serious enemy, whether we’re looking at geopolitics in the Far East, germ warfare, or economic warfare.

Biden, however, is entirely beholden to China, which has poured billions into his family via son Baker (Cobbler? Grifter? I forget his name). It may also be behind much of the unrest on America’s streets because China badly needs Trump out of the White House. Trump and the Democrats are aligned in believing that civil unrest, combined with a self-inflicted recession, will do the trick.

Second, is Biden really calling Trump the “first” racist president? First, Trump is not racist.

Second, we have had a few other racists in office:

  • Buchanan, a Democrat;
  • Lincoln, a Republican who didn’t think much of blacks but put his life and the life of our nation on the line to secure their liberty;
  • Johnson, a Democrat;
  • Wilson, a Democrat;
  • Franklin Roosevelt, a Democrat;
  • Harry Truman, a Democrat who nevertheless put principle over prejudice to integrate the U.S. military;
  • Johnson, a Democrat; and
  • Obama, a Democrat (whose grandmother was a “typical white person” and whose son could have been the thug Trayvon Martin).

‘Nuff said.

A few random thoughts about the Wuhan virus. Has it ever occurred to anyone that the Democrat governors’ decision to infect old age homes wasn’t stupidity or incompetence? All of them have states that have been overspending. Old people are expensive because they’re using resources for medical care and getting other benefits even though they’re no longer paying into the system. What better way to fix state budgets that have damaged by gross irresponsibility and really evil lockdowns than to trim the aged fat?

I have no proof for this theory. I’m just sayin’…

There was a vile article in Yahoo saying that pro-life states are hypocrites because their Wuhan virus policies are killing people. The article is short on data and long on invective. The article’s trigger was a report saying that more people are getting sick in the Southeast and West.

The problem, of course, is that the numbers show that these states will have to work hard, really hard, to catch up to the virus massacre in Democrat-run, pro-abortion states (you can see a better image here):

Second, California, a vehemently pro-abortion state, is currently taking the lead in new cases.

Third, the linear thinking about virus numbers fails to acknowledge the lives destroyed because of panic, hysteria, and lockdowns. There’s a balance in everything. We could save people’s lives by banning cars, thereby ending car accidents, but then we’d have a lot of deaths from starvation, lost opportunities for medical treatment, abuse from isolation, etc. Everything is a tradeoff. At the end of the day, in my southern state, we have these signs:

That “now hiring” sign is as much a pro-life sign as the “Baby Lives Matter” signs popping up.

Fourth, one Oxford epidemiologist, whose been a whole lot more accurate than the awful Neil Ferguson (the adulterer from Imperial College London who started the whole panic), says she thinks there’s also going to be a pleasantly low threshold for herd immunity.

Oh, here’s a good fifth one: Fauci is not a very good guy, in addition to being a stone-cold political operative pretending to be a disinterested bureaucrat.

Two funny videos that are spot on the nose. This first video, from Ryan Long, a Canadian comic working in New York, captures perfectly how racist woke whites are. I mean, really, really racist.

This second video also captures something perfectly, this time the awfulness of both Democrat politicians and vapid and pretentious Hollywood actors:

I’ve got more stuff in the queue, but I’m running out of time to post tonight. I’ll try to add another Bookworm Beat tomorrow. It’s just a matter of being organized, efficient, responsible, and the opposite of a procrastinator. In other words, if I can change into a new person by tomorrow….

Bookworm Beat 10/25/19: Media still lies about the Russia hoax, plus more

Mueller’s report didn’t stop media lies about the Russia Hoax. As Bill Barr closes in on the culprits the lies get more extreme and desperate. Plus more.

(This is a companion post to the No. 28 Bookworm Podcast, which I uploaded early today.)

Lies from the Left about the Russia hoax. The second part of my podcast is a short rehash of my much longer post about the New York Times’ spin on the news that AG Barr has elevated to a criminal investigation John Durham’s look at the origins of the Russia hoax. I won’t repeat that here, but I urge you to check out my post if you haven’t already.

On MSNBC, a former Obama official spins an amazing web of lies about the Russia hoax. On his podcast today, Derek Hunter played a snippet of Andrea Mitchell’s Report, a daily MSNBC program I’d never heard of before. It isn’t a news report; it’s just Democrat spin.

The topic from this particular episode, broadcast on October 22, was AG Barr’s investigation (and this was before the news about it’s going criminal broke). I can’t find a copy of the video to embed, but you can see the video here.

What fascinated me was the opening statement from Mitchell’s guest, a woman named Wendy Sherman. For those who, like me, had never heard of Sherman, she was the Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs in the State Department from 2011 to 2015. She was the lead negotiator for the Iran deal and also conducted nuclear negotiations with North Korea. This is a woman comfortable with selling out to dictators.

Here’s what she had to say about the investigation Barr is overseeing:

That short statement contains myriad lies, obfuscations, and misdirections, which I’ll address in a minute. The thing that most shocked me about it, though, was the opening sentence:

From the outside, this looks like a continuation of undermining the institutions of the United States government.

Why did that shock me? Because you need to understand what’s really been going on since 2016: The Left, using the FBI, the CIA, the NSA, the DOJ, the NSC, and the State Department, attempted a coup against a duly elected American president — after the Left’s attempt to fix the election failed.

Think about that.

Of the acts and institutions I mentioned, only the election is in the Constitution. The Constitution says who will be elected (the President) and prescribes a mechanism for the people to speak in a way that avoids mob rule and that assures a voice for everyone, not just for major population centers (i.e., the Electoral College). The alphabet soup agencies therefore attacked a core Constitutional function. That’s a big deal.

And what about those agencies? None of them show up in the Constitution. The State Department is old, having been established in 1789 to help the president carry out his constitutional foreign policy responsibilities, but it itself is not a core constitutional creation. The position of Attorney General also came into being in 1789, but it too is not mentioned in the Constitution. The Department of Justice itself didn’t come into being until 1870 and it too is not in the Constitution, neither the original or amended versions.

As for the alphabet soup agencies, here are their dates of origin and none of them have any Constitutional ties either:

  1. FBI – created in 1908, not in Constitution
  2. CIA – created in 1947, not in Constitution
  3. NSA – created in 1952, not in Constitution
  4. NSC – created in 1947, not in Constitution

So Sherman, in her opening sentence, is angry that bureaucracies are under attack, and not at all upset that the bureaucracies participated in a coup against a Constitutional election. She’s got it bass ackwards.

After getting everything wrong at a core, principled level, Sherman then swings into the obfuscation and lies:

The theory — it appears that Attorney General Barr is operating under is a debunked conspiracy that, I think, Ned can elaborate even more than I can.

You noticed, I’m sure, that while Sherman says “Ned can elaborate even more” she about the alleged “debunked conspiracy,” Sherman never explains it in the first place. The fact that she avoids is the Democrats horrible nightmare, which is Mueller’s reluctant admission that there was no Russian collusion. It was a fake.

Moreover, it was pursued by people who laundered information that tracked perfectly on a scheme first tried out on John McCain in 2008. (For more on that, I urge you to check out Dan Bongino’s books and podcasts.) In other words, there is no “debunked conspiracy theory.” There is just an actual conspiracy that’s slowly emerging from the darkness in which the actors hid it.

Then there’s this sentence:

It’s really crazy to be perfectly frank.

The sentence doesn’t have much substance, but I mention it for two reasons: First, it tracks the language of the whistle blower’s source (who I half-jokingly explained may be Triggly-Puff or someone similar considering his/her fragile sensibilities). That source, in trembling tones, called Trump’s perfectly ordinary conversation with Ukraine President Zelenskyy “crazy” and was completely “shaken” for that reason. Second, remember that the Democrats in the media have been pushing the argument that Trump is “crazy” and needs to be kicked out of office under the 25th Amendment. This word “crazy” has wormed its way into the Lefts’ collective psyche. Some would call it projection….

But here’s the really big lie Sherman utters:

Durham is a professional, but none the less it is quite concerning about what they’re doing and, indeed, I think it is raising questions among diplomats around the world who are being questioned about whether in fact Russia was responsible for interfering in our elections, of course they were, all of our agencies, all 17, of them have said they did and we need to really be on our toes about what will happen in the upcoming election.

That “17 agencies” claim is a hoax that started (surprise!) with Hillary Clinton in the final debate before the 2016 election. There, when she was talking about the hacked DNC server and John Podesta’s little phishing problem, she said,

We have 17, 17 intelligence agencies, civilian and military who have all concluded that these espionage attacks, these cyber attacks, come from the highest levels of the Kremlin. And they are designed to influence our election. I find that deeply disturbing.

Here’s what really happened: The Department of Homeland Security and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence issued a joint statement saying they were confident that the attacks on the DNC and other sites came from Russia. It was an official statement from the top of a combination of 16 agencies (plus the DNI). These 16 agencies are:

  1. Air Force Intelligence
  2. Army Intelligence
  3. CIA
  4. Coast Guard Intelligence
  5. Defense Intelligence Agency
  6. Office of Intelligence and Counter Intelligence for Energy Affairs
  7. Office of Intelligence and Analysis
  8. Bureau of Intelligence and Research
  9. Office of Terrorism and Financial Intelligence out of the Treasure Department
  10. Office of National Security Intelligence
  11. The Intelligence Branch of the Justice Department
  12. The Marine Corps Intelligence Activity
  13. The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency
  14. National Reconnaissance Office
  15. The National Security Agency/Central Security Service
  16. Office of Naval Intelligence

No one can tell me that the Coast Guard or the Navy or the National Reconnaissance Office or the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency were looking into the hacked DNC server. And, indeed, you don’t have to try spinning those lies to me.

That’s because we know what happened. The FBI showed up at the DNC and asked to look at the hacked server. The DNC refused, telling the FBI that a private company called Crowdstrike had looked at the server and fingered Russia — and that the FBI would have to live with that. The FBI, usually so zealous about protecting its territory, meekly acquiesced.

Crowdstrike, of course, has Ukraine ties, which is why President Trump, when talking to Zelenskyy, the new President of Ukraine, about the incredibly corrupt administration before Zelenksyy came on board, asked for Ukraine to look into Crowdstrike to help determine its connection to the claimed Russian collusion issue that roiled the Dems for three years. In other words, Trump is doing the work the FBI never did but lied about, and that the intelligence community lied about, and that Hillary then exaggerated and lied about, and that Wendy Sherman now lies about.

You can see how easily Sherman voiced all her lies, misdirection, and misrepresentaion . . . and how tedious it is to unpack and explain things. The criminal investigation had better have loud and clear results or the American public will never understand what happened.

All of this reminded me that, when it comes to the Left, you must never trust, but you must verify. Just think of what Mary McCarthy, a former Communist, had to say about Lillian Hellman, a communist until the day she died: “Every word [Hellman] writes is a lie, including ‘and’ and ‘the’.” Hellman sued for defamation. That was a bad idea.

For a little color, here’s a quotation from Phyllis Jacobson’s March 21, 2010, New Politics’ review of Joan Mellen’s Hellman and Hammett. New Politics, it should be said, is a socialist publication:

McCarthy started producing evidence of some of Hellman’s lies, including her statements indicating that she knew nothing about the Moscow Trials. Hellman had, she pointed out, signed statements applauding the guilty verdict. But then she produced the most damaging of all Hellman’s lies, the chapter in Pentimento, the second volume of her memoirs (later made into the film, Julia with Jane Fonda playing Hellman (Julia) to Vanessa Redgrave’s anti-fascist activist), in which Hellman portrays herself heroically carrying money into Nazi Germany for her socialist activist friend. A complete fabrication. Hellman had appropriated the life of Muriel Gardiner who later told her own story in Code Name Mary, a story Hellman had learned from their mutual friend, lawyer Wolf Schwabacher. Told by London that she would have to produce evidence of the real Julia to proceed with her case against McCarthy, Hellman was frantic and became tangled in a web of additional lies. She actually had the chutzpah to plan to visit Muriel Gardiner to ask Gardiner to say that she was not Julia, a meeting that never came off. Hellman still hadn’t thought her way out of her dilemma when McCarthy’s attorneys’ motion to have the case dismissed on the basis that Hellman was a public figure was denied. The case was scheduled to proceed. But it never did. Hellman died before that could happen.

(I was a teenager when the movie Julia came out and I saw it on its first run. I was uninformed regarding just about everything in that movie, but I still hated it with every fiber of my being, for it was so obviously a self-serving lie. I never willingly watched another Fonda or Redgrave movie after that.)

Are you ready for President Michelle Obama? Mike McDaniel thinks that, as the Democrat candidates continue to implode, putting people off with their personalities, lies, and Leftism, the Democrat Party will begin casting about for a savior. I think so too.

Hillary clearly thinks she’s that savior, but she’s completely nutty. In the same interview in which she attacked Tulsi Gabbard as a Russian asset, Hillary had this to offer as one of the reasons she lost in 2016 (emphasis mine):

I think it’s going to be the same as 2016. Don’t vote for the other guy. You don’t like me. Don’t vote for the other guy, because the other guy is going to do X, Y, and Z. Or the other guy did such terrible things. I’m going to show you in these flashing videos that appear and then disappear and they’re on the dark web and nobody can find them, but you’re going to see them and you’re going to see that person doing these horrible things.

As an aside, don’t let Hillary’s attack on Tulsi lull you into thinking Tulsi’s one of the good guys. Tulsi’s not a Russian asset and she has moments of sanity, plus I’ve been told she looks good in a bikini, but do not mistake her for anything but a stone cold Leftist. This is not a case of the enemy of my enemy is my friend. Just because Hillary doesn’t like Tulsi doesn’t mean you should.

So if Hillary’s not the one, who is? As I said, both Mike and I worry that it might be Michelle. Michelle’s claims that she doesn’t want to run mean nothing. She’ll answer the call if drafted.

Leftists love Michelle unreservedly and they know that she’ll be the second coming of Barack Obama. Moreover, while the sexism charge didn’t stick when Trump debated Hillary, because Hillary is so unlikeable and hard and unwomanly, don’t think Trump will have an easy time debating Michelle. Despite her more manly attributes, she still comes across as more feminine than Hillary. While she’s not as smart as Trump is, the fact that she’s a black woman will create optics so bad that even Trump might have problems opposing her in a debate.

The homeless industrial complex. PowerLine noted that a local television station in the San Francisco Bay Area revealed that, at least in the Bay Area, little of the money allocated to the homeless actually makes it to them.

In San Jose, for example, of $14 million in taxpayer money allocated to homeless, only $2 mil goes to homeless with the remaining 86% going to rental subsidies (which is arguably for the homeless) but also admin and “crafting plans”

Homelessness is big business for bureaucracy and the parasites it attracts. Ending homelessness is the worst thing that could happen to them.

Finding my people in Tennessee. Back in 2008, when Obama was the Democrat candidate and McCain, with Sarah Palin at his side, the Republican candidate, I got into a discussion with a Democrat who could not believe that I would let Palin get within a heartbeat of the presidency. I pointed out that she had significantly more executive experience than Obama and that she had several significant political accomplishments to her name. I also pointed out that Obama’s only accomplishment by 2008 was self-promotion.

The Democrat, exasperated, huffed at me, “She’s not one of us.”

I knew what he meant. We lived in the True Blue San Francisco Bay Area. We and all our friends went to top public and private colleges. We and all our friends were members of the professional class. We and all our friends (well, except for me), were pro-abortion, anti-fossil fuels, pro-“climate change is real”, anti-war, anti-gun, etc. And Palin wasn’t.

Fast forward 11 years, and here in Tennessee I’ve finally found my people. I’ve started attending a local Toastmasters to help me get over my microphone fear with podcasting.

The people who attend the meeting are lovely — very friendly, very interesting. Also, unlike my past community, they make open references to God and the Bible, with no attendant embarrassment; they make open, unashamed references to guns and hunting; and they discuss core political issues, such as the Electoral College and the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact in an intelligent, non-partisan way. (Toastmasters is not meant to be partisan, something I highly respect.)

I’m home at last.

The post Bookworm Beat 10/25/19: Media still lies about the Russia hoax, plus more appeared first on Watcher of Weasels.

The Impeachment & The Russia Probe

The Barr/Durham Russia probe is now a criminal investigation.  The NYT reports that the investigation is without basis and that pushing for Ukrainian assistance is part of the justification for the House Impeachment investigation.

It was apparent from Nancy Pelosi’s “fact sheet” released the other day (and blogged here) that the House is looking to assert that any investigation into the criminal origins of the Russian Hoax is an impeachable abuse of power by the President.  That was confirmed by an article in the NYT today (reprinted at SFGate) discussing that “Justice Department officials have shifted an administrative review of the Russia investigation closely overseen by Attorney General William Barr to a criminal inquiry.”  Bookworm has already fisked the article in the post below this.  I’m writing to add emphasis to one portion of the article.  As the NYT reports:

The opening of a criminal investigation is likely to raise alarms that Trump is using the Justice Department to go after his perceived enemies. Trump fired James Comey, the FBI director under whose watch agents opened the Russia inquiry, and has long assailed other top former law enforcement and intelligence officials as partisans who sought to block his election.

Trump has made clear that he sees the typically independent Justice Department as a tool to be wielded against his political enemies. That view factors into the impeachment investigation against him, as does his long obsession with the origins of the Russia inquiry. House Democrats are examining in part whether his pressure on Ukraine to open investigations into theories about the 2016 election constituted an abuse of power. . . .

Do read Bookworm’s fisk of the above article.

Progressives believe themselves above the law and will rip this country apart to keep it that way.  A recent poll found that two-thirds of people surveyed believe we are near a civil war in this country.  If the House succeeds in impeaching Trump over investigations into the Russia Hoax, I have no doubts that number will go much higher.

Oh . . . and . . .

NEW: @CBSNews has obtained a letter sent to the hill today from DOJ IG Horowitz updating committee leaders on the status of the highly anticipated FISA Report. He says, “I anticipate that the final report will be released publicly with few redactions.” pic.twitter.com/DFCh7txrrO

— Clare (@ClareHymes22) October 24, 2019

(H/T AOS)

The post The Impeachment & The Russia Probe appeared first on Watcher of Weasels.

How a Balanced Budget Amendment Would Give the Federal Government Lawful Power Over Whatever They Want

By Publius Huldah

 

Does our existing Constitution permit the federal government to spend money on whatever they want?

 

No! It contains precise limits on federal spending.

Federal spending is limited by the enumerated powers delegated to the federal government. If you go through the Constitution and highlight all the powers delegated to Congress and the President, you will get a complete list of the objects on which Congress is permitted to spend money. Here’s the list:

  • The Census (Art. I, §2, cl. 3)
  • Publishing the Journals of the House and Senate (Art. I, §5, cl. 3)
  • Salaries of Senators and Representatives (Art. I, § 6, cl. 1)
  • Salaries of civil officers of the United States (Art. I, §6, cl. 2 & Art. II, §1, cl. 7)
  • Pay the Debts (Art. I, §8, cl. 1 & Art. VI, cl.1)
  • Pay tax collectors (Art. I, §8, cl.1)
  • Regulate commerce with foreign Nations, among the several States, and with Indian Tribes (Art. I, §8, cl.3)
  • Immigration office (Art. I, §8, cl.4)
  • The mint (Art. I, §8, cl. 5)
  • Attorney General to handle the small amount of authorized federal litigation involving the national government (e.g., Art. I, §8, cls. 6 & 10)
  • Post offices & post roads (Art. I, §8, cl. 7)
  • Patent & copyright office (Art. I, §8, cl. 8)
  • Federal courts (Art. I, §8, cl. 9 & Art. III, §1)
  • Military and Militia (Art. I, §8, cls. 11-16)
  • Since Congress has general legislative authority over the federal enclaves listed in Art. I, §8, next to last clause, Congress has broad spending authority over the tiny geographical areas listed in this clause.
  • The President’s entertainment expenses for foreign dignitaries (Art. II, §3); and
  • Since Congress had general legislative authority over the Western Territory before it was broken up into States, Congress could appropriate funds for the US Marshalls, federal judges, and the like for that Territory (Art. IV, §3, cl. 2).

That’s what Congress is authorized by our Constitution to spend money on. Did I leave anything out? Take a few minutes and, armed with a highlighter, read carefully through the Constitution and see for yourself.

Congress is to appropriate funds to carry out this handful of delegated powers; and it is to pay the bills with receipts from taxes. 1

Pursuant to Article I, §9, clause 7, the federal government is to periodically publish a Statement and Account of Receipts and Expenditures. Citizens could use this Statement and Account – which would be so short that everyone would have time to read it – to monitor the spending of their public servants.

So that’s how our existing Constitution limits federal spending:

  • If it’s on the list of enumerated powers, Congress may lawfully spend money on it.
  • But if it’s not on the list, Congress usurps powers not delegated when it appropriates money for it.

 

It was unconstitutional spending and unconstitutional promises (Social Security, Medicare, etc., etc., etc.) which got us a national debt of almost $19 trillion, plus a hundred trillion or so in unfunded liabilities.

Since the Constitution delegates to Congress only limited and narrowly defined authority to spend money; the Constitution doesn’t provide for a budget.

We never had a federal budget until Congress passed the Budget and Accounting Act of 1921. By this time, the Progressives controlled both political parties and the federal government.

The Progressives wanted a federal budget because they wanted to spend money on objects which were not on the list of delegated powers.

A balanced budget amendment (BBA) would substitute a budget for the enumerated powers, and thus would legalize the current practice where Congress spends money on whatever they or the President put in the budget.

The result of a BBA is to legalize spending which is now unconstitutional – it changes the constitutional standard for spending from whether the object is on the list of enumerated powers to a limit on the total amount of spending.

 

  • And to add insult to injury, the limits on spending are fictitious because they can be waived whenever Congress 2 votes to waive them.

 

And because a BBA would permit Congress to lawfully spend money on whatever is put in the budget, the powers of the federal government would be lawfully increased to include whatever THEY decide to put in the budget.

So a BBA would fundamentally transform our Constitution from one of enumerated powers only to one of general and unlimited powers – because the federal government would then be authorized by the Constitution to exercise power over ANY object they decide to put into the budget.

You must read proposed amendments and understand how they change our Constitution before you support them.

All federal and State officials take an oath to support the federal Constitution (Art. VI, clause 3). When people in Congress appropriate funds for objects not listed in the Constitution; and when State officials accept federal funds for objects not listed, they violate their oath to support the Constitution. According to the PEW Report, federal funds provided an average of 30% of the States’ revenue for FY 2013. Look up your State HERE. Were those federal funds used to implement unconstitutional federal programs in your State?

Power over education, medical care, agriculture, state and local law enforcement, environment, etc., is not delegated to the federal government: those powers are reserved by the States or the People. Congress spends on objects for which it has no constitutional authority; and bribes States with federal funds to induce them to implement unconstitutional federal programs. It was the unconstitutional spending which gave us this crushing $19 Trillion debt.

 

How do we go about downsizing the federal government to its constitutional limits?

We stop the unconstitutional and frivolous spending one can read about all over the internet.

 

We begin the shutdown of unconstitutional federal departments and agencies by selecting for immediate closure those which serve no useful purpose or cause actual harm such as the Departments of Energy, Education, Homeland Security, and the Environmental Protection Agency. 3

 

Other unconstitutional federal departments and agencies must be dismantled and their functions returned to the States or The People.

 

An orderly phase-out is required of those unconstitutional federal programs in which Citizens were forced to participate – such as social security and Medicare – so that the rug is not pulled out from American Citizens who became dependent. The phase-out could be funded by sales of unconstitutionally held federal lands.

 

The federal government is obligated (Art. I, §8, cl. 11-16) to provide for service related injuries suffered by our Veterans.

 

The Constitution delegates to Congress the power to appropriate funds for “post Roads” (Art. I, §8, cl. 7). While there may be room for argument as to what is included within the term, “post Road”; clearly, some federal involvement in road building is authorized by our Constitution. State dependence on federal highway funds might be reduced by eliminating or reducing federal fuel taxes, and the substitution of fuel taxes collected by individual States. And there is nothing immoral about toll roads.

 

Since our Constitution was written to delegate to the federal government only the few and defined powers enumerated in the Constitution, we don’t have to change the Constitution to rein in federal spending. The Constitution isn’t the problem – ignoring it is the problem. Let us begin to enforce the Constitution we have.

Endnotes:

1 Our original Constitution authorized only excise taxes & tariffs on imports (Art. I, §8, clause 1), with any shortfall being made up by an apportioned assessment on the States based on population (Art. I, §2, clause 3).

2 Compact for America’s (CFA) version of a BBA permits spending limits to be waived whenever Congress and 26 States agree. CFA’s version also authorizes Congress to impose a national sales tax and a national value added tax in addition to keeping the income tax! See THIS Paper.

3 George Washington’s Cabinet had four members: Secretary of State, Secretary of War, Secretary of Treasury, and Attorney General.

 


Article written by: Tom White