State House Republicans get their crazies on

If the Republican caucus has a coherent strategy for narrowing the Democrats’ near super-majority in the state House, you wouldn’t know it from the steaming pile of crazy-ass bills their members have already introduced. Sure, there are always a few extreme or downright bizarre bills dropped each session from both sides of the aisle, but never before has one caucus gone so far off the deep end, and in such overwhelming numbers.

And if Democrats play their cards right, you gotta think that this is gonna hurt the Republican brand next November.

Exactly how crazy are we talking about? While how about HJM 4010, a House Joint Memorial sponsored by Representatives Condotta, Shea, Klippert, Kretz and McCune, that asks Congress to do away with both the Federal Reserve and paper money:

NOW, THEREFORE, Your Memorialists respectfully pray that the Congress of the United States, and particularly, the legislative delegation to Congress of the State of Washington, use all of their efforts, energies, and diligence to protect all the citizens of this nation from potential, unprecedented losses in the value of take-home pay, retirement income, insurance policies, and investments as a result of the Federal Reserve’s ongoing inflation of our unbacked paper money by passing legislation (such as H.R. 2756 to repeal our nation’s legal tender laws, H.R. 4683 “The Free Competition in Currency Act of 2007,” and H.R. 5427 the “Tax-Free Gold Act of 2008″) to help restore gold and silver money in accordance with the Constitution, then phasing out the Federal Reserve System and its inflationary paper money, the Federal Reserve Note (as in H.R. 2755).

That’s right… these Republican legislators want our currency to consist entirely of gold and silver coins. Yeah, that’ll get our economy moving.

Now I know what you’re thinking: there’s only five Republican sponsors on that bill. It just isn’t fair to categorize the entire GOP caucus as off their collective rockers based on this one joint memorial.

So how about HB 2709, the Washington State Firearms Freedom Act of 2010 (Shea, Ross, Kristiansen, Haler, Klippert, Taylor, McCune, Short, Hinkle, Course, Dammeier, Parker, Johnson, Angel, Bailey, Orcutt, Roach, Schmick, Fagan and Condotta), which attempts to exempt any firearm, firearm accessory, or ammunition manufactured and retained in Washington state from federal regulation.

Or HB 2712, the Washington State Sovereignty and Federal Tax Escrow Account Act of 2010 (Shea, Condotta, Kristiansen, Klippert, Haler, Anderson, Taylor, Short, Kretz, Crouse, McCune, Hinkle, Ross, Roach and Schmick), which requires that all federal taxes be remitted to the state, and held in escrow, and includes the rather startling threat that any action by the feds against a WA citizen for complying with the act (you know, like not paying the IRS your taxes) would be considered a “hostile and unconstitutional action against Washington state and its citizens,” against which the state would take “all necessary measures.”

And then there’s HB 2708, the Washington State Energy Freedom Act of 2010 (Shea, Condotta, Kristiansen, Haler, Klippert, Herrera, Taylor, Short, Kretz, McCune, Crouse, Rodne, Hinkle, Parker, Dammeier, Ross, Angel, Bailey, Roach, Orcutt, Schmick, Fagan and Smith), which exempts seeks to exempt Washington state from any federal fuel economy or greenhouse gas emission standards. That’s 23 of the caucus’s 36 members!

And all three of these clearly stupid and unconstitutional bills include the following clearly stupid and unconstitutional provision:

Any federal law, rule, order, or other act by the federal government violating the provisions of this chapter is invalid in this state, is not recognized by and is specifically rejected by this state, and is considered as null and void and of no effect in this state.

That’s right, nearly two-thirds of the Republican House caucus have signed their names onto crazy-ass bills that attempt to assert that state law trumps federal law whenever state legislators say it does. Which raises the question: what the fuck have they been putting into their tea?

Well apparently, “tea” is the operative word here. The crazy-ass teabaggers are rallying in Olympia on Thursday, and this apparently has Republicans running scared… so scared that they’re willing to make themselves look like… well… a bunch of crazy-ass teabaggers.

Republicans apparently fear that unless they appease the teabaggers with the kinda crazy, paranoid, right-wing, pseudo-constitutional bullshit that makes Ellen Craswell look like Dan Evans Lyndon LaRouche look like John Adams, they’ll face a Teabagger Party primary challenger… so much so that some Republicans reportedly plan to put “Prefers GOP/Tea Party” next to their names on the ballot this year.

How else to explain why, with the Legislature facing a $2.6 billion shortfall one year after passing a devastating all-cuts budget, the House Republican caucus has made redefining the Commerce Clause of the U.S. Constitution they’re number one priority this session?

One would have thought that with the crappy economy and the ongoing budget woes and the Democrats already having stretched their majorities to likely unsustainable numbers, the GOP might at least pretend to run to the middle in the hope of winning back a few swing districts. Instead, it looks like what’s left of their party is dissolving like a sugar cube in cup of hot tea.

Man, is this gonna be fun to watch.


  1. 1

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    The Washington State Sovereignty and Federal Tax Escrow Account Act of 2010 seems like a good idea to me. It means we won’t have to send our taxes to red states anymore. Oh — you didn’t know that blue states are net payers and red states are net receivers of federal largesse? I thought everyone knew that.

  2. 2

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    The gold standard is effective at maintaining stable currency values (i.e., preventing inflation or deflation). Unfortunately, it’s also good at making sure the economy can’t grow any faster than the gold supply. So, population growth, technological change, and rising living standards are out. But hey, that’s not too high a price to pay to lick the Evil Inflation currently ravaging our economy.

  3. 3

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Some economists believe re-pegging the world’s major currencies to gold after World War I was the leading cause of the Great Depression.

  4. 4

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Today’s Money Quote

    “Nearly a decade of experience with the Department of Homeland Security has demonstrated that a paranoid with real enemies is still a paranoid.” — Thomas G. Donlan in Barron’s

  5. 5

    SuperSteve spews:

    They also want to go home early – check out HJM-4405:

    “BE IT RESOLVED… to adopt joint rules for the 2010 legislative session… to adjourn Sine Die in forty-five days or less.”

    They claim it’s because “the state of Washington is facing an extraordinary fiscal challenge…” but there’s nothing in it about lowering their salary to account for them working 25 percent fewer days than they’re supposed to.

  6. 8

    drool spews:

    I heard a great idea on the radio today. The Republicans should actually offer up a budget making all the cuts required to get us revenue neutral. Tey are sying it wouldn’t be considered by the Ds (fare statement) but it would be something they could hang their hats on and tell everyone they presented a balanced budget with no new taxes. I will not be holding my breath because carping about it is much easier than doing work. They would also have to defend their proposed cuts in the next election cycle.

  7. 9

    SuperSteve spews:

    @8 – that would be Gregoire’s “Book 1″ budget that was released last month.

    But the R’s won’t do that because they’re full of it – they’re a bunch of hypocrites who say we should cut, cut, cut but don’t want to stand by those cuts.

  8. 10

    Quincy spews:

    WTF is going on? I remember 1981 when it seemed like we were beginning to give free rein to every discredited nutball idea. But that doesn’t compare at all to explosion of the crazy that began in reaction to 1/20/09. Are we really going to debate bringing back nullification?

  9. 11

    Michael spews:

    You gotta love that the “energy independence act” would leave us MORE dependent on gas and diesel.

    Didn’t we vote (referendum or initiative) for having California standards for emissions and fuel fuel efficiency.

    I’m disappointed to see Jan Angel’s name on this one, I’d been thinking that she was one of the non-bat-shit-crazy types. My bad.

  10. 13

    Proud To Be An Ass spews:


    Since they have nothing better to do, what do you expect from our GOP legislators? Surely, they do not desire to responsibly roll up their sleeves and help fashion a painful budget…that would make a mockery of everything they say.

    As a confirmed lefty who has been (and alas, continues to be) in the minority on just about everything for a very long time, I can only say these hacks are not adapting very well, and the prognosis is not an optimistic one.

  11. 14

    SuperSteve spews:

    @11 – sorry, but Jan Angel is just a seat warmer. She only sponsored 4 bills in her first session last year, and three of them just renamed things like the Tacoma Narrows Bridge and the Washington State Ferry system.

    She signs on to every Republican bill to pad her resume – I doubt she even reads half of them…

  12. 15

    DavidD spews:

    If they are really serious about helping during a serious fiscal challenge, the first thing they should do is give their salary and health care benefits back to the state.

  13. 16

    Michael spews:


    Yeah but, I thought she might not be a crazy seat warmer at least.

    I think she won because Pat Lantz had held that seat for a really long time and people thought it was only fair to give the Republican’s a turn.

  14. 17

    Michael spews:

    I wonder if the Republican’s will want to name April 19th 2nd Amendment day.

    The mission of the Second Amendment March is to galvanize the courage and resolve of Americans; to petition our elected officials against establishing anti-gun legislation; and to remind America that the Second Amendment is necessary to maintain our right to self defense.

    It is the one right that protects all others.

  15. 18

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @12 I own shares of Olin, which makes bullets, and Cabela’s, which sells bullets. I’m vertically integrated in bullets. Hey, if rednecks want bullets, I’ll take their money! Thanks for your business, Bubba! Need any gasoline, fertilizer, coffee, or women’s handbags? I’ve got all that, too. Hmm, maybe I should buy shares in a hospital chain, so I can make money when surgeons dig bullets out of rednecks. All those bullets gotta go somewhere.

  16. 19

    Max Rockatansky spews:

    just remember, its this state’s Democratic leadership that has got us into BILLIONS of dollars of debt….nobody else.

  17. 20

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @19 Nah. It’s our citizens who want schools, colleges, highways, prisons, and so on, who got us in debt. That stuff isn’t free.

  18. 21

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @19 (continued) So, are you proud of the fact our poorest citizens pay 17% of their income to support state and local services, while our richest citizens pay only 3%? That’s a hell of an accomplishment, Republicans!

  19. 22

    Michael spews:


    Gee, you mean those bankers at WAMU that sold home loans to unemployed people didn’t have anything to do with it? Or the other way around, the people who took out home loans even though they were unemployed, they don’t have anything to do with this?

    The people that were living large on credit cards and the companies that sold them the cards have nothing to do with this?

    The folks in DC that changed labor, tax, and trade laws so that it became profitable to offshore jobs (many of them D’s) don’t have anything to do with this?

    And what about all those greedy rabbits, eating up more than their share of the grass and veggies, having too many kids, pooping all over the place. I’m sure those rabbits are partly to blame.

  20. 23

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @22 There’s plenty of potential room for inchoate rabbits. All we need is for one competing species to go extinct.

  21. 26

    Michael spews:

    They’re not waiting for halloween to do that. I’ve started to see John Birch bumper stickers and Lit. show up in Gig Harbor.

  22. 27


    I predict that we’ll be seeing serious wide-spread secessionist movements in the US within ten or twenty years. Just surprised that WA state is one of the early adapters.

  23. 31

    Michael spews:


    Yeah, she actually does, and it’s looking like she’ll be able to add having served 1 term in the state house to it.

  24. 32

    Michael spews:

    I wonder if the WSRP bought these bills from Glenn Beck? They sound pretty Glenn Beck. Buy gold!

  25. 34

    Politically Incorrect spews:

    The cause of the Great Depression was the Federal Reserve’s failure to regulate margin requirements properly in the stock market. People could buy stock with 10% down. That was way, way too low! Now the margin requirement is 50%, and they watch this kind of credit like a hawk.

    Borrowing money you can’t repay, either due to stupidity or failure to generate sufficient cash flow to service debt, is a recipe for disaster.

  26. 35

    rhp6033 spews:

    34: The Federal Researve doesn’t regulate the stock market, and never has (although that seems to be changing recently). That is the role of the Securities and Exchange Commission and, before them, state “Blue Skies” laws. The minimal margin requirements led to the stock market crash, but that was just one aspect to the Great Depression. The Great Depression had already hit the farmers and rural areas several years previously, and was rolling across different segments of the economy, like watching dominos fall.

    I’ll agree that the stock market in 1928-29 was, indeed, very much like the real estate market in 2006-2008. People who couldn’t make much money elsewhere in the economy were dumping it into one segment of the economy, hoping to get rich quick. Lots of ordinary people were seeing themselves gradually getting poorer over the course of the decade, and saw flipping houses as an opportunity to get rich, just like the big guys.

    What made the economy particularly vulnerable in 2006-2008 was that real estate mortgages were linked to Wall Street financing through various novel investment vehicles which hadn’t been used before. The Feds weren’t inclined to put a damper on the party because (a) Republicans hate regulation anyway, (b) the guys getting rich were important and well-connected people, and (c) nobody wanted the party to end, at least until after the 2008 elections.

    The real estate market was already in trouble by early 2008, but it took a few more months before the results hit the Wall Street balance sheets. A lot of Wall Street firms thought that by selling the bundled mortgage-backed securities to the next victim, they had cut their losses. What they didn’t expect that the terms of the securities sales allowed the buyers to charge back against the seller if the securities turned bad. That’s why in the fall of 2008 the extent of losses were so uncertain – nobody could tell how many claims were going to be made against the firms which had sold the securities over the next few years.

  27. 36

    rhp6033 spews:

    I’m astounded at the GOP bringing up these various “nullification” and “seccessionist” proposals. Apparantly they didn’t learn anything in history class. Like Bush talking about Vietnam, they seem to think that the South won the Civil War.

    I’d just like to see some militia types try to take over the federal military facilities in this state – Ft. Lewis, Bangor, Whidbey Island, etc. See if they can enforce a blockade to starve out the troops there, as S. Carolina did to Ft. Sumter. I can just see a handful of crazy militiamen trying to enforce a roadblock against an M1A1 tank, their pistols, shotguns, and rifles making kind of a “popcorn popping” sound agains the armour. The tank wouldn’t even have to fire, it could just run them over.

  28. 37

    rhp6033 spews:

    To paraphrase Clark Gable in “Gone with the Wind”…

    “Just how many cannon factories are there in the State of Washington”?

  29. 38

    rhp6033 spews:

    I wonder if these legislatures trying to bring back the gold standard have personally invested in gold recently. Could they just be trying to prop up the market for their investments?

    I can see the gold-selling shill at the “investment meeting” in the buyer’s home: “Did you know that Congress has a bill under consideration RIGHT NOW to bring back the gold standard? Do you realize how valuable gold will be when that passes?”

  30. 40

    rhp6033 spews:

    Speaking of crazies….

    Seems like Chuck Norris has officially gone off the deep end. Taking Glenn Beck as his information source, he is ranting that President Obama is planning on using the 5-person Intopol office in New York as a “secret vault” for hiding documents detailing a conspiracy to turn America over to the Muslims.

    Ignoring, of course, that it’s all nonsense. The article on Norris’ claims ends with the following:

    “For another reality check, take a look at this posting—just up on the National Rifle Association’s site—which dissects the conspiracy claims about Obama’s executive order and concludes they are hogwash.

    What does it say about the state of political discourse when the NRA is the voice of reason?”

    Chuck Norris Hunts for Obama’s ‘Secret Vault’ as Interpol Conspiracy Theories Get Wilder

  31. 43

    Michael spews:

    The Federal Reserve posted record profits for the year, helping us postpone doom, collapse, and so on and so forth for a little longer.
    Fed quietly posts record $46.1-billion profit in 2009
    The earnings, a benefit of its financial crisis intervention, could be offset by future losses when the central bank starts selling assets purchased to help stabilize the economy.

  32. 44

    lostinaseaofblue spews:

    The whole post boils down to this paragraph and would have been better written had it stopped there-

    “That’s right, nearly two-thirds of the Republican House caucus have signed their names onto crazy-ass bills that attempt to assert that state law trumps federal law whenever state legislators say it does. Which raises the question: what the fuck have they been putting into their tea?”

    Read the Constitution, Goldy. Except in respect to powers and duties specifically laid states and the citizens of them.

    You can dislike this. After all, it invalidates most of what progressives have done, and all of what they want to do to this country. (Operative word being ‘to’ not ‘for’.) But you can’t deny words plainly written in English. Wait, you’re a progressive, so words only mean what you want them to.

  33. 45

    lostinaseaofblue spews:

    Sorry, for some reason the post lost part of a sentence. It should have read-

    Read the Constitution, Goldy. Except in respect to powers and duties specifically laid down states and the citizens of them ALL other rights duties and priviledges devolve to the states and the citizens of them.

  34. 46

    rhp6033 spews:

    44: Actually, it’s nothing more than the “nullification” argument advanced by Calhoun in the 1830’s. Andrew Jackson threatened to send the army to S. Carolina and enforce federal law. The S. Carolinians backed down, that time. They tried it again in 1860, resulting in the American Civil War from the spring of 1861 to the spring of 1865, causing the loss of hundreds of thousands of American lives (both north and south), the economic destruction of the South (from which it only beginning to recover), and physical destruction in the wake of several marching armies.

    The U.S. Constitution empowers the Congress the right to make laws relating to the “health and benefit” of the citizens and relating to “commerce”, which pretty much covers most things Congress has enacted over the last Century.

    Since the Congress has those rights specifically granted in the Constitution, and the the 10th Amendment only applies to powers NOT granted in the Constitution, and those rights have been upheald over the better part of 75 years by both conservative and liberal U.S. Supreme Courts, the argument at # 44 fails to address it’s intended target.

  35. 47

    uptown spews:


    Perfect time to short it, just before all of the jewelers melt down their excess inventory that didn’t sell over the holidays.

  36. 49

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @34 You’re confusing effect with cause. The stock market bubble existed only from mid-1928 until mid-1929, but easy margin requirements had existed for some time, so why did a bubble exist only for that brief period? The answer is the bubble was created by the monetary policies of central bankers trying to prop up currencies pegged to gold, which among other things encouraged a flood of “hot money” into the American stock market.

    It was the resumption of the gold standard by the major economies — America, Britain, France, and Germany — after World War I, and the monetary policies designed to defend the gold standard, that created the stock market bubble and crash, as well as the subsequent monetary ills that led to global deflation.

    The 1929 stock market bubble did not trigger the Depression. If there was a trigger, it was the bank runs a year later. But that, too, was a symptom, not a cause. While no single event caused the Depression — it evolved from a tandem series of events — it was a perfect storm of policy misjudgments by central bankers and political leaders that turned a cyclical recession into a vicious depression that fed on itself. They did everything wrong, and they were led to do it by their misguided belief in the gold standard.

    Arguably, the Great Depression wouldn’t have occurred if Benjamin Strong hadn’t died in 1928 or policymakers had listened to John Maynard Keynes, both of whom understood what was happening and tried to raise the alarm. But Strong was dead and Keynes was a voice in the wilderness, and Strong’s successors at the Federal Reserve and Europe’s obtuse bankers and politicans lurched into the abyss, making exactly the wrong decisions at every turn.

  37. 50

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @35 The fundamental cause of America’s economic decline over the last quarter century was debt-fueled consumerism. No nation has ever spent its way to prosperity. Until the laws of mathematics are repealed, it can’t be done.

    I won’t say I saw the collapse coming. I can’t time markets or economies. No one can. But I knew the spending orgy wasn’t sustainable and the credit system was unsound, and I did have a feeling that at some point it all had to go sour.

    I did the right things, which were the opposite of what most Americans were doing. Beginning in the late 1980s, my household quit consuming, avoided credit card debt, focused our income on eliminating all debt, and used savings to buy assets rather than lend to others — i.e., I bought stocks not bonds.

    When stock market crashes occurred, I bought while the stupid herd sold at panic prices. For example, the day after the 1987 crash, I spent $30,000 in the stock market in 30 minutes. I didn’t even know what I paid for the stocks when I bought them. It took several days to find out. That didn’t matter very much; whatever the prices were, they were cheap. I had just sold a house, and I used every cent of my accumulated home equity, which on that day was in cash sitting in bank accounts, to buy stocks. I figured if this was Armageddon, the end of the world, that cash wasn’t going to be worth anything anyway. It worked out well.

    You can’t make something out of nothing. You can’t get richer by borrowing. Nor can you get richer by lending, because of the tendency of borrowers to not repay. The only way to get richer is by saving instead of spending, and using your savings to own producing assets.

    My primary objective in this strategy, which took over 20 years to carry out, was to free my family from dependency on bosses and jobs. Surveys show a vast majority of Americans dislike, or even hate, their jobs. Mrs. Rabbit and I fell in that group. Work isn’t fun, and increasingly in America, the bonds of loyalty and trust between employers and workers have been severed. You simply can’t believe, trust, or put any faith in any employer anymore. Not even the well-intentioned ones, because they could be replaced tomorrow. With ownership and management of companies turning over every few years, and elected leadership of governments turning over as often, you simply can’t put long-term faith in any employer, or stake your future on any employment. So, the only approach that makes any sense is to not need employment.

    That’s what I did, and I ended up well positioned for the current crisis. While our two state pensions aren’t completely safe, they are much safer than depending on employment to pay our bills. After years of cutting expenses to the bone, they’re less than half of our after-tax cash flow, and will fall even more as we convert from out-of-pocket medical insurance to Medicare over the next couple of years, which helps us build up our portfolio of assets and gives us a safety margin against future inflation. I’m actually benefiting mightily from America’s current economic troubles because the lack of inflation effectively enlarges my income and the opportunity to buy investment assets at discounted prices enlarges my savings.

    I may not be a fucking genius, but I look like one compared to the average stupid human. I’m hopping in clover while millions of people around me are crying into their bottled water and wishing they had been born as rabbits.

    The rabbit doesn’t always lose to the tortoise. That’s just a fairytale. And if you hobble yourself with debt, high living, and dependency on employment, you’re a tortoise. See that critter gaily waving at you from the top of the hill up ahead? That’s me. =:-D<

  38. 51

    proud leftist spews:

    lost @ 44
    Your side lost that argument a long, long time ago. You might read John Marshall’s decision in Marbury v. Madison. Federal law trumps state law, period. Sure, every now and again, the Supreme Court might strike down some piece of congressional legislation as an act exceeding federal lawmaking authority, but that is damned rare. And, do you really think a state legislature telling Congress to go hump itself passes constitutional muster? Sometimes, you come across as somewhat thoughtful, even if too partisan to permit any political objectivity. Your post here requires that I reconsider that impression.

  39. 52

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @44 I went to good colleges, not crazy-ass wingnut colleges established to teach fools things they want to believe that aren’t true.

    Therefore, I’ve learned the reputable version of history, government, and law. You have it backwards, and your head up your ass. Federal law preempts state law, and states can’t choose choose which federal powers to recognize, and reject others.

    The Constitution, like the Bible, is susceptible of being read without being comprehended. A small dose of knowledge mixed with a large dose of idiocy leads to functional ignorance.

    You are an ignorant man.

  40. 54

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @45 The fact is, over the last 200 years, courts have read this and other provisions of the Constitution expansively, such that there is very little if anything the federal government cannot do, and most of what the federal government chooses to do preempts what the states want to do (see, e.g., segregation and oil tankers in Puget Sound). What you do in your fantasy world is your business.

  41. 55

    lostinaseaofblue spews:

    Re 51-54

    Court decisions over the years have made the law what it is, not entirely the original wording or intent of the Constitution itself. Having said that the original intent does matter.

    I’m far from defending the legal notion of state law trumping federal. I merely raise a point that the courts have consistently interpreted the Constitution to mean the opposite of what it says. See for example the 2nd Amendment. For more recent examples try to get an AGs’ office to sue for 4th Amendment violations on warrantless wiretapping, illegal searches at all federal buildings, airports etc. I’m NOT suggesting a civil war. I am suggesting that there are constitutional means for amending the document. And then there are the courts.

  42. 56

    proud leftist spews:

    Marbury v. Madison was issued in 1804, which was less than a generation removed from when the Constitution, and its first 10 amendments, were drafted. I suspect that Court had a much clearer read on the intended meaning of the Constitution than do you, here in 2010.

  43. 57

    lostinaseaofblue spews:

    Re 55

    I’ve read that case. Have you?

    Marbury v. Madison established the right for the courts to review legislation. I’m unclear how this has to do with the long running issue of states rights. Please enlighten me if I’m missing something.

    Rabbit can correct me if I’m wrong.

  44. 58

    lostinaseaofblue spews:

    Probably leftist is responding to this-

    “I am suggesting that there are constitutional means for amending the document. And then there are the courts.”

    There’s a difference between judges/justices ruling on arguments presented by attorneys to determine constitutionality and judicial activism. The one provides a means for looking at legislation beyond political influence. The other replaces the legislature with the courts and is surely not what the founders intended.

  45. 59

    proud leftist spews:

    Reasonable people can disagree about the meaning of the 2nd Amendment. All reasonable people, on the other hand, must agree that the amendment is very poorly written. Its meaning is far from clear given how poorly drafted it is.

  46. 60

    lostinaseaofblue spews:

    Re 59

    The 2nd Amendment was written by revolutionaries. These men deeply distrusted strong central government. The militia referred to were state militia. Partly this was to provide defense in a much less ordered world against foreign depredations. Partly they were to be a protection from an over reaching federal government.

    Still, if it’s an issue of poor wording, the solution would be a new amendment that says whatever we wish it to say reflecting current technology, popular will etc.

    To simply steamroll over it threatens all the rights you DO value. If the courts can ignore one item in the BOR they can ignore all.

  47. 61

    lostinaseaofblue spews:

    Little known fact- In at least one case a state army surrounded the Capitol over a wage issue. The organizers were never tried for treason or any other crimes. This was fairly early in our national experiment, and may provide a clue to framers intent.

  48. 62

    Vlad spews:

    The 10th Amendment nuts were buzzing in the Washington State legislature back in the early ’90’s.

    Then their pal Tim McVeigh blew up that Federal Building – and they all crawled back under their rocks.

    For 15 years, apparently.

  49. 63

    rhp6033 spews:

    The reference by Proud Leftist to Marburry vs. Madison was probably in error. I think he meant McCulloch vs. Maryland (1819), which ruled that the State of Maryland could not tax the Bank of the United States.

    A more recent case would be Edgar vs. Mite Corporation (1982), which held that “”A state statute is void to the extent that it actually conflicts with a valid federal statute.”

    By the way, I’m wondering why the nullificationist skip over THIS part of the U.S. Constitution – the Supremecy Clause:

    “This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.”

    (Article VI)

  50. 64


    Simple, rhp6033.

    Whichever bit of the Constitution (or the Bible, for that matter) supports your pre-existing opinion is infallible and unchangeable. The rest of the document was created and/or misinterpreted by impostors.

  51. 65

    proud leftist spews:

    Oops, rhp is correct at 63, though Marbury is still relevant to the discussion to the extent that the legislative proposals set out above do suggest that the drafters of those proposals still don’t understand that legislatures in this country don’t get to say what is or isn’t constitutional. McCulloch, like Marbury, was also a Marshall Court decision; it came from some who were of the same generation as the drafters of the Constitution. I think that’s kind of relevant to debates about “original intent.” (Of course, I think those who claim that divining original intent is the key to constitutional interpretation are either liars or hopelessly deluded.)

  52. 66

    rhp6033 spews:

    Lost @ 60 says: “The 2nd Amendment was written by revolutionaries. These men deeply distrusted strong central government.”

    Nope. The U.S. Constitution, and the Bill of Rights enacted therafter (including the 2nd Amendment), was written by men who had experienced a WEAK central government under the Articles of Confederation, and sought to strengthen it through the U.S. Constitution.

  53. 67

    rhp6033 spews:

    “(Of course, I think those who claim that divining original intent is the key to constitutional interpretation are either liars or hopelessly deluded.)”

    Well, constitutional scholars, they clearly are not.

  54. 68

    proud leftist spews:

    I always like to ask the “original intent” folks how they reconcile all the Amendments enacted over the past 200+ years and their impact on whatever the “original intent” might have been (if, indeed, given the number and diversity of the Framers, an “original intent” might ever have been divinable). The 14th Amendment, for instance, has a rather significant impact on the notions underlying the Teabagger legislative proposals quoted above, and on those which lostinaseaofblue espouses above. I’ve never received a coherent answer. Imagine that.