National Convention of States
There is a quiet movement happening in country known as a National Convention of States with under tones similar to the Brexit vote in Great Britain. Supporters like to call it a National Convention of States, which sounds less threatening, but the differentiation is a difference without a distinction. The concept, on the surface, has merits with honest objectives by many supporters but there is another side to this idea that has concerning parallels to a “Trojan Horse” movement, heavily funded by the usual list of ultra-liberal suspects.
The concept of a National Convention of States is outlined under article V of the Constitution which says The Constitution can be amended in two ways: by 2/3 vote of the United States Congress or by 33 State’s Legislatures. Once they vote to agree to have a convention, proposed amendments will be drafted by “somebody”, for presentation to all States through their Legislatures. At least 38 Legislatures must agree to these amendments in order to amend The Constitution. There may be several amendments proposed with each needing a vote of approval vote by at least 38 states. When 38 states approve any amendment, it becomes law and part of Our Constitution. This is a very difficult barrier to cross but it does put new amendments in place where congress, the Supreme Court or the president are not able to stop but it is also very difficult to unwind.
This is very unusual process because it takes the power away from the Federal Government to make these amendments. The movement considers our nationally elected official and the Supreme Court as the problem because they lack the political courage to fix any of the problems that are now permitted under our constitution. This lack of trust exists because it is felt the politicians are self serving and not doing what is best for the country.
To this point the convention sounds like a good idea, but the next step is where the devil is in the details. These proposed amendments are designed to address concerns that are adversely affecting the country as seen by the activists writing these proposals. On the surface this idea sounds valid with the issues topping the list being the national debt, term limits and gun control. The problem is this will not be the entire list in spite of claims to the contrary. This is a convention to discuss possible changes after all and will not let this opportunity pass.
The procedures followed at this point will be determined by human nature with no other controlling body. The opportunity to revise the constitution happens once in a life time and to expect the proposed changes to be limited to three issues is very unlikely. The proposals will come from a collection of “political activists” who will gather in some sort of forum to rewrite parts of the constitution starting with the above list, but will likely evolve into issues like gender identity, The Electoral College, tax law, electronic monitoring, immigration not to mention those items involving political correctness and situational ethics.
I addressed the national debt, term limits and gun control in past commentaries with the common denominator of those advocating these changes all having a common desire for a more activist approach to running the country. The difference between liberals and conservatives is: liberals want revision as soon as possible without fully considering unintended consequences and don’t seem to care about the cost because it is not their money. Conservatives, on the other hand, are inclined to stay with the system that got us to this point, realizing change for change’s sake, by only addressing symptoms is not the way to solve problems. The movement has all the markings of proposals that have a liberal, activist nature.
A convention of states will not solve any of the country’s problems. The machinery to make these changes already exists. The problem is a lack of integrity by law makers where the best interests of the country are secondary to the interests of our politicians who like it the way it is now.
The temptation, by delegates, to use the opportunity to revise more provision in our founding document will be overwhelming. The process of a convention is very protracted, intricate and expensive and will more likely evolve into more chaos than any constructive machinery to make things better and possibly start a civil war with the media willing to fan the flames.
The solution to the national debt problem is: run the country like a business by investing tax dollars instead of spending them. The solution to having incompetent senior citizens in government, is to vote them out and stop the apathy of citizens that continues to elect them. Their answer to gun legislation is to print millions of “GUN FREE ZONE” signs and require every building in the country to post it at their front door…..like that will work????
Democracy is the best of all the terrible alternatives with the only possible outcome being answers that are perfectly mediocre with the elected officials only slightly better than the average citizen. Jesus Christ would have difficulty winning an election without name recognition. The irony is any system, even socialism or communism, would work if there was no cheating or hypocrisy.
The problem is a lack of integrity by those elected to manage. Putting more restrictions or amendments will only become an “arms race”, with politicians finding ways to circumvent the system to allow corruption to continue. Until there is an incentive for our elected managers to be fair, honest, have integrity and do it sustainability, a National Convention of States will accomplish little with a lot of sound and furry, signifying nothing. It will be a media event with more money spent on this than any political campaign with the likelihood of improving anything 50/50 at best with any changes very difficult to reverse.
This is Keith Kube wishing you the best in making the world a better place.
Keith Kube, of Crofton, is a business analyst and author of two books on business management. The books are available at the Elkhorn Valley Museum, Norfolk City Library, Norfolk High School, Norfolk Catholic, Northeast Community College and Amazon.
During his career as an engineer, investment banker and business analyst he identified traits commonly overlook that are vital for all successful business operations and government. You can hear all his past editorials or review his books by going to his website: www.keithkube.com