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Jan 16, 2011

Repealing the 17th
It's about Government Competition Stupid!


Henry Lamb
It's the Constitution, stupid!

Henry Lamb
How to stop a runaway federal government

Competition in sports is beloved in America.

You can cheer for either the Dallas Cowboys, even if you live in Chicago, or the Chicago Bears, even if you live in Dallas. You can watch the New York Yankees or the Baltimore Orioles or both. And if they fail to satisfy you, in any manner, you can demand the immediate ouster of the manager or a bungling key player.

Competition in business is what made America strong.

You have the choice of hamburgers from no less than 4 major companies, cells phones from as many, and as of the writing of this article, health care the Founding Fathers never dreamed of.

So -- why is competition in government so hard for you to understand?

Why is a mammoth monopoly forming unchecked at the federal government and you are not up in arms over it?

Exxon, as one of the few large "fly-over" companies, not headquartered in the liberal states of New York or California, is constantly demonized by the media-Scribes as a perceived monopoly in oil who dictates to Republican leaders and oil sheikdoms alike. Why? Not because it is small and weak, but because it is perceived to be all powerful.

Anyone who watches more than a few episodes of the ShowTime’s series on King Henry VIII, called "The Tudors" knows in an instance why the Founders were so afraid of a monopoly of power in the hands of a centralized government, where an English King could proclaim himself England's "Pope", answerable to no one except his own Mohammad-like proclamations of what God wants, lopping off the heads of at least two of the women he professed to love, along with many of his former counselors.

In my childhood, as probably in yours, you may remember that the State was the real power in your everyday life.

If you appeared to have committed a crime, it was the county sheriff who arrested you. You most likely attended a State university with State supervision. If you suspected the food in your neighborhood restaurant was tainted, you didn't call the Department of Homeland Security, you called the State health inspector.

For some even older people, you may remember going to a Catholic elementary school, or being treated at the Baptist hospital. No government at all, but a true Separation of Church and State.

For really, really old people, I have read stories where high school kids brought their rifles to school for "show and tell" and one could ride a horse from one coast of America to the other coast without ever having to present a "driver’s license", and in fact, a rifle to take along with you was highly recommended in order to protect oneself from hostile Indian tribes.

Can anyone tell me that having the freedom to move from say a stifling nanny-state Massachusetts government to live under the promise of a more free and open Missouri government was not instilling competition into government?

Can you tell me that State governments did not have to compete for citizens to live in their state?

Can any of you tell me why having one federal government dictating to all American citizens of every State how much water they can flush in their toilets, even if they live in the swamps of Louisiana, is healthy for our country?

America back then was America exactly because we had competition. And NOT having a 17th Amendment was the main reason.

Whenever some wanna-be Henry VIII started getting too uppity in Washington and demanding that all ladies expose their most intimate affairs in public at the airport, the State legislatures would tell their State-appointed United States Senator to force the Federales to back off.

Not now with the passage of the 17th Amendment.

States today are about as useful as your appendix, except its the Federal government who is giving us the pain of acute appendagitis.

It doesn’t have to be this way.

States could fund their own candidates for Senate who would repeal the 17th Amendment once in office.

If only, you would hold your State representative to the fire to do what you wanted him to do.

    It's the Constitution, stupid!
    by Henry Lamb

    The U.S. Constitution may not be perfect, but it created the best structure for self-governance that man has ever devised.

    The document recognized and declared two unprecedented principles: 1) legitimate governmental power arises from the consent of the governed; and 2) the structure of government must be self-correcting.

    When we elect our representatives, we give our consent to them to act in our behalf. At the point when our elected representatives' actions are not consistent with our wishes, we have the right and the opportunity to dismiss them, by electing another representative.

    The founders worked hard to make the U.S. government self-correcting.

    Three separate, co-equal branches of government – legislative, executive, judicial – is an important part of the self-correcting structure.

    Two other unique features are equally important: the Electoral College and the selection of senators by state legislatures.

    The founders knew that the only hope of a self-correcting government was a structure in which the essential elements were in constant competition.

    Just as competition keeps any single provider from becoming the only source of a product in a free market, competition in government keeps any single component from becoming the only source of power. That competition is still alive, if not completely healthy, between the three branches of government.

    But the essential competition between the states and the federal government was all but abolished by the 17th Amendment in 1913, and is still under attack by people who are working to destroy the Electoral College.

    The oath taken by every elected official to uphold and protect the U.S. Constitution are idle words uttered by hypocrites when their next action is to ignore or seek to destroy an essential element of the Constitution.

    It is the Constitution that created the government that allowed individual people to create a great nation. Deviation from constitutional principles diminishes our government and our nation. Strict adherence to those principles provides the self-correcting mechanisms designed by our founders.

    The first lesson every elected official should learn is this: It's the Constitution, stupid!

    --Henry Lamb

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Christian Libertarian: Harmonious Union
Church and State

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