Tuesday, July 26, 2011

A proposed constitutional amendment

Again, I have taken some time away from writing here, and today I must venture back into politics again, my previous controversial comments on Sarah Palin notwithstanding.

I am sick and tired of the government - Republicans and Democrats alike - playing political games for the benefit of no one but themselves. Every fight is a game of chicken and we are the cars. The most recent is the deficit and debt ceiling debate. You want to balance the budget or come reasonably close? Warren Buffett had a good idea. These people in DC are coming off like a pack of petulant children, and it has to come to a stop for the good of this country.

Inspired by Mr. Buffett, I therefore propose the following constitutional amendment for your consideration. I know it needs refining. Please let me know your thoughts, and, if you like it, please share it with your friends:

Section 1.  Congress shall, on or before 11:59 PM Eastern Time on June 30 in any calendar year, adopt all legislation necessary pertaining to the budget for the government of the United States. No extension of time, continuing resolution or any procedure whatsoever shall substitute for the actual adoption of a budget, except as provided in this article.  If Congress fails to adopt such budget, then all members of Congress and all persons in the employ or service of the legislative branch shall serve without pay or benefits until the budget is duly adopted, with no back pay provided for members of Congress.  

Section 2.  If Congress adopts a budget where all expenditures for the United States exceed all revenues by an amount that is greater than three percent of the gross domestic product of the United States in the preceding calendar year, then all members of Congress who vote in the affirmative to adopt such budget will, following the completion of his or her current term in office or his or her resignation from office, be rendered permanently ineligible from serving as a member of Congress or working or volunteering in any capacity whatsoever in the service or employ of the United States, either with or without pay.

Section 3.  For the purposes hereof, "gross domestic product" means the market value of all final goods and services produced in the United States in any calendar year.

Section 4.  The provisions of this article will not apply to any budget adopted (a) during a time of a war actually declared by Congress until the cessation of hostilities pertaining thereto, or (b) by an affirmative vote of not less than three-fourths of the members of each of the House of Representatives and the Senate.

Section 5.  In the event the provisions of this article conflict with or are repugnant to any other provision of this Constitution, the provisions of this article will govern and control.

Section 6. The Congress shall have power to enforce and implement this article by appropriate legislation.