Thursday, January 21, 2010

Scott Brown Should NOT Have Been Elected on Tuesday!

Okay, I know a little clarification of this title is expected in some quarters, demanded in others, and proof in yet others that I'm so soft-minded that I'm suckling off liberal tit that I should be ignored, or perhaps have an intervention where I'm taken to an underground bunker and "reeducated" by being forced to listen to 48 hours of Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, and Sean Hannity simultaneously at around 120 decibels, followed by a bitch slapping by Ann Coulter's boobs (no, Ann's a little too scary to turn me on (despite the probable presence of jagged nipple piercings), but I could imagine her in dominatrix wear). So let's get to the clarification.

First, I am glad for Brown's victory, especially in light of today's pronouncement by Nancy Pelosi (who I could imagine in the same way as dear Ann above, with the same lack of arousal) that she lacks the votes to pass the Senate's health care monstrosity through as it is, thus coming closer to killing that path to destruction. The fact that absolute power is no longer in the hands of one party is glorious news.

I am all in favor of the will of the people, though an election as provided for by law, choosing the candidate they prefer. In this case, it's Senator-elect Brown. And I don't think there were any significant intentional manipulations to adjust the election in anyone's favor. President Obama agrees.

And this is not a comment on term limit either, which would have seen Senator Kennedy retired from the Senate years before, and therefore not causing a vacancy which was filled by this election. I do support the idea, as politicians tend to collect power and hang around in Washington long after corruption sets in and common sense gets sold. I'd say 3 terms for Representatives (6 years total) and 2-3 terms for Senators (12 or 18 years) would be a decent number as long as we have to rely on an idiot populace that can be bought with goodies from the Washington hog trough.

No, I'm talking about the popular election of Senators in the first damned place.

The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each State, elected by the people thereof, for six years; and each Senator shall have one vote. The electors in each State shall have the qualifications requisite for electors of the most numerous branch of the State legislatures.
When vacancies happen in the representation of any State in the Senate, the executive authority of such State shall issue writs of election to fill such vacancies: Provided, That the legislature of any State may empower the executive thereof to make temporary appointments until the people fill the vacancies by election as the legislature may direct.
This amendment shall not be so construed as to affect the election or term of any Senator chosen before it becomes valid as part of the Constitution.

Originally, as laid out in the Constitution, Senators were chosen by state legislatures, two from each state, as a check on the easily swayed popular sentiments that dominated the politics of the House.  In addition, the Senators were representatives of the rights and wishes of the states, not the people.

As with most rights, it was not through the will of others that this right was stripped and given to the dumb masses.  Rather, despite pushes and problems, it was upon the ratification of the amendment by 37 of the 48 states (Alaska and Hawaii were not states yet) in 1913 that they gave up their right to representation in the federal government and gave the responsibility to people who's motives were not always in the best interest of their state.  I will give credit to Utah as the only state to have any damned sense, as they were the only ones to reject it.

Obviously, this is on the list of freedom-raping amendments that demand repeal (along with the 16th as part of the creation of the FairTax and the 18th, which was repealed).

Very simply, imagine a Senate that was not influenced by the need to pander to interest groups, empowered because there are only 33-34 6-year term Senatorial races to deal with rather than spreading resources over 435 House members scrapping for spots every two years.

Imagine a body who's responsibility was to make sure that the states weren't pushed and pulled by their purse strings and at the barrel of the gun to comply with the Imperial federal government.

Imagine what the Senate would look like if the most influence you could have over them was choosing your state representative, and the majority control of individual states decided the complexion of the Senate (we wouldn't need term limits then).

Very simply, democracy (a euphemism for mob rule) is the surest way to trample freedom.  And while the people should, and must, have a voice in how their government is run, our country was founded on a healthy distrust of what happens when a majority decided the value of the minority (at one point, it was three fifths of a person).  And when the deliberative body was reduced to another expression of the people's will, the Federal era of government was swept away in the inevitable march of the Imperial Federal Government.


dmarks said...

By gum, you're right!

Jerry Critter said...

An interesting idea, but I am not sure that putting the selection of Senators in the hands of state politicians would be an improvement? I kind of shudder when I think of my California legislators picking my Senators.

dmarks said...

Well, we have one senator from Illinois who was involved in bribing a politician to get his office.

The Democrats throw out any pretense at ethics and standards higher than pond-sum when they seated that guy.

TRUTH 101 said...

I'm with Dmarks on this Patrick. Far easier to bribe the majority leader into channeling 25 or 30 votes than an entire state electorate.

But if I may give my take which is always from personal experience and observation.

When decisions like this are left to a few individuals, they will act in their own self interests and not the needs and wishes of the people they represent.

I'm going through this situation on far smaller scale admittedly with my union. Three guys "fucked up" my contract because it was in their interests to fuck it up. The issues were major and affected every member of my bargaining unit. The changes should have been brought to a vote by the members. They fucked us. Just as we the people would get fucked if we let a small group decide who represents us in the US Senate. They would be beholden to the state senate majority leaders and not the voters. It would be bad for both parties.

Thanks for the opportunity to vent.

repsac3 said...

(Cut'n'pasted--though revised & extended, where necessary--from Truth's place.)

I'd have to give this idea more thought. I agree that it's easier to bribe and manipulate the few, rather than the many, but perhaps the state needs representation apart from the people at large. I'd think (or at least hope) there would be a way to limit corruption, somewhat... How would (or did) it work in terms of term limits, and/(or) the ability of a newly constituted legislature to recall/replace the senators appointed by a previous legislature?

(I'll read up... There's no need to answer--unless you're proposing something different than was done prior to the 17th Amendment, in which case you'll have to lay it out...)

Also, I'd think that "bringing home the bacon" would be more of an issue, given that much of that porky goodness is for projects that benefit & enrich the state itself (& those who represent it, of course). I mean, it doesn't do me much good to have a flaming fart museum built here in NY, but considering the state contracts and building fees, and the inevitable tourism that'd generate... well, I'm sure you see my point...

In short, I have questions, sir...

Anonymous said...

You said, Scott Brown Should NOT Have Been Elected on Tuesday!

And I say, someone's Mama should have had an abortion.

Patrick M said...

Dmarks: Are you just going to come by and say that every day? :)

But let's not lay all the asshattery at the feet of the Democrats, because it's not a good v evil government we have.

Jerry: It's about making politics even more local, and having positions other than the whim of the mob be the guide.

101: Let me clarify a couple of things.

When decisions like this are left to a few individuals, they will act in their own self interests and not the needs and wishes of the people they represent.

Instead of having millions of clueless constituents, it's a matter of having maybe a couple hundred people who can call you up pronto. a Senator having to answer to a legislature is a small ratio.

Just as we the people would get fucked if we let a small group decide who represents us in the US Senate.

That's the point. The House should be our representatives. The Senate should be the representative of the State governments, not the people. Otherwise, we might as well go unicameral and watch the country go to hell faster.

Repsac: The important thing is considering and thinking and questioning rather than jumping on the ideology wagon.

But to answer the basics, I'm looking at a straight repeal, which means it would fall to the states to appoint or elect their Senators. The advantage is that Senators don't have to run statewide election campaigns. It also means that the responsibility for the decision falls on your state representative (which means the person you get to yell at is not in Washington.

Most importantly, the idea is to empower states, and to bring a point of view other than how to appeal to the idiot interest groups that our US Reps have to deal with.

Also, it might slow down government a little more, and cripple Washington's propensity to mandate by tax.

Corruption simply is. The face of corruption may change, but it will always be there. It's a matter of who you trust. The voting public has proven they pick the shiniest and most vacuous time and time again (pick your flavor of politician, Bush or Obama).

Patrick M said...

Anon: Just who's mama are you talking about?

Really, I'd like to know. Because I'm not sure who, unless you just read the title and blathered that shite out like a fucking retard.

Because I'm assuming you missed the first paragraph, which was rather amusing, then missed the beginning of the second where I began my clarification with: "First, I am glad for Brown's victory...,"

So I'll assume after this simplistic clarification, it'll be your mama who couldn't operate a clothes hanger correctly.