Thursday, July 02, 2009

The Right Way to Amend the Constitution, part 2

This is part two of an ongoing series of articles containing proposals for amendments to the Constitution. For someone who claims so fervently to be a “Constitutionalist”, how is it that I can be so eager to change the Constitution? Well, there are several reasons. For one thing, I believe that after the Bill of Rights, much damage was done by some of the amendments that were added and the legitimacy of some of their ratifications are questionable. Secondly, the Constitution has been violated so much that the necessity of further amendments is needed to resolve the resulting problems. But this should be done extremely cautiously. These amendments are extremely unlikely to ever be introduced, much less ratified, but hey, I can dream, can’t I?

Here is my second proposed amendment (subject to revision):

Section 1. The Government of the United States shall not engage in any business, professional, commercial, financial, or industrial enterprise except as specified in the Constitution.

Section 2. The constitution or laws of any State, or the laws of the United States, shall not be subject to the terms of any foreign or domestic agreement which would abrogate this amendment.

Section 3. The activities of the United States Government which violate the intent and purposes of this amendment shall, within a period of three years from the date of the ratification of this amendment, be liquidated and the properties and facilities affected shall be sold.

Section 4. Three years after the ratification of this amendment the sixteenth article of amendments to the Constitution of the United States shall stand repealed and thereafter Congress shall not levy taxes on personal incomes, estates, and gifts.

Commentary on this proposed amendment:

This is the only one of this series of amendments which has actually been proposed (exactly as written) and it is in this 111th Congress and its H.J. Res 48. Who would want to continue having the IRS bullying people? You have got to be either nuts or corrupt not to support this legislation.

to read next week's proposed amendment.


  1. Anonymous3:11 AM

    So, how would you finance our government?

  2. First, get rid of everything that is unconstitutional (see the 10th amendment), (federal departments, agencies, overseas military bases, etc.) and selling off the assets of these unconstitutional entities (as this proposed amendment states.

    The constitution allows for tariffs on goods imported from other countries. A 1-2% tariff should be enough to fund all legitimate functions of the federal government. These functions include things like national defense (not national offense), border security, keeping the peace, and maintaining the federal courts. It does not include healthcare, education, "running the economy" (i.e. the Federal Reserve), or any other function not mentioned in the constitution. In other words, I would finance the federal gov't the same way that it was financed for the first 137 years of its existence. After the income tax was instituted, we had the Great Depression and we have had destructive booms and busts ever since.

    This amendment only abolishes federal income tax and federal involvement in "business activities". State governments could still have wide latitude financing their governments including imposing an income tax.