The Bill of Rights

When we speak of our constitutional rights, it is often the Bill of Rights to which we refer. Have men ever devised a better set of governing guidelines (let’s leave out the OT theocracy for now!).

Comments

  1. dr. james willingham says

    Have you heard about the 42 democrats who have sponsored a bill to repeal the First Amendment to the Constitution?

      • Tarheel says

        There have in fact been 42 Dems who have signed onto an effort to amend the constitution so as to grant congress the ability to regulate and essentially ALL control political speech.

        It’s wacky.

        • Tarheel says

          Text of the amendment, S.J. Res. 166 offered by Mark Udall-D and supported by 41 other Dems.

          “Section 1. The Congress may enact laws regulating the amounts of expenditures a candidate may make from his personal funds or the personal funds of his immediate family or may incur with personal loans, and Congress may enact laws regulating the amounts of independent expenditures by any person, other than by a political committee of a political party, which can be made to expressly advocate the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate for Federal office.

          Section 2. The several States may enact laws regulating the amounts of expenditures of a candidate may make from his personal funds or the personal funds of his immediate family or may incur with personal loans, and such States may enact laws regulating the amounts of independent expenditures by any person, other than by a political committee of a political party, which can be made to expressly advocate the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate for State and local offices.”

          Notice it gives power to congress and states power to “enact laws regulating the independent expenditures of ANY person…”

          Also to grant power to limit how much a candidate, or candidates family, or even loans he/she can take out to fund his own campaign.

          This is mind boggling.

          • says

            I think there’s some mis-reading taking place here. First there’s talk of an attempt to repeal the First Amendment followed by the supposed cited evidence to control and regulate all political speech. Yet the text of the 2 sections of the amendment offered as evidence never directly mentions political speech at all. The focus of the 2 sections is explicitly on regulating campaign financing–not what can be said pro or con in a political speech.

          • Bennett Willis says

            If this is an effort to control speech, then it is related to the logic that “money talks.” Our political system (translated taxes) encourages the accumulation of wealth which in turn can be spent on controlling (by amount, if nothing else) political speech–which may well produce more favorable tax rates. It seems to me that this might be better described as an effort to reduce this.

            Not a chance of ever getting adopted though. Even I would not support it and I think that the present system is way out from where it might better be.

          • John Wylie says

            I usually disagree with Bennett about 110% of the time, but I do believe he is right on this one. While I am not for messing with the current wording of the Constitution, limiting how much money can be spent on buying an election is not an infringement of speech.

          • John Wylie says

            I’m sorry Bennett that first part of my comment was a jerky thing to say, please forgive me. I agree with you on campaign finance reform and that it is not an infringement of speech.

          • Tarheel says

            If congress tells me I can only give X dollars to the campaign of Dave miller for president – that is so clearly limiting my political speech that if y’all can’t see it – you’re either playing naive or are actually so.

            If congress tells dave miller as the candidate how much he can spend of his own money – or banks his much they can loan him – then congress is involving itself way too much in the campaigns of candidates. I know what you’re thinking…well without this rich people will buy elections….bull hockey! Mitt Romney, Hillary Clinton, Al gore, and many others illustrate that personal wealth cannot guarantee elections.

            Also- look at the other side. Limiting his much Dave, who is not rich, can borrow in effect could allow for shutting out those candidates with lesser resources (non establishment) by the congress.

            The SCOTUS has ruled over and over (liberal and conservative courts) that money directed to (or against) candidates is in fact political speech.

          • John Wylie says

            It may be a limiting of expression but not speech, and I for one don’t want people like George Soros or Michael Bloomberg buying elections.

          • Tarheel says

            Also, free political and rigorous speech is what the first amendment is all about.

            Political speech must be protected from govt. regulation. If there’s even a hint of congressional/presidential power over it – America will soon cease to be free. That’s not alarmist – it’s true.

          • Tarheel says

            John, please don’t talk for this.

            I don’t Like a single thing George Soros stands for. But if we start limiting what you can give to the candidates supports then who’s to stop them from limiting what you and I can give to the candidates that we support? Once we give Congress is power it will affect everyone from the George Soros down to anyone who gives to a campaign.

            NOTICE THE USE OF THE WORD *ANY* in the text of the bill.

          • Tarheel says

            But you said this…. It’s the basis for the amendment.

            “It may be a limiting of expression but not speech, and I for one don’t want people like George Soros or Michael Bloomberg buying elections.”

            One form of free political speech/expression (it’s the same thing) is money.

          • Bennett Willis says

            John, since I usually comment when I am in strong disagreement with the flow of the thread, it was nice to find someone in agreement–and a bit surprising. :)

          • John Wylie says

            Tarheel,

            I understand and respect your point of view on this, but doesn’t unlimited ability to give to a campaign give the elites more of a voice than you and I have, and in that sense doesn’t it suppress our political voice? I have actually been for campaign finance reform for years.

          • Bennett Willis says

            Locally (Texas) we have an example of David Dewhurst who spent quite a lot of his personal money in losing races to Ted Cruz and then to Dan Patrick.

            Spending a lot of your own money does not guarantee a win if you are unwilling to align yourself (or because of your history can’t do so) with “the base.” That appeared to be Dewhurst’s problem.

            It seems to me that the bad examples of people putting too much money into political races are all from the left? But this is what I would expect here based on what I have observed in other places. The other fellow’s money has an odor. My fellow’s money is aromatic.

          • says

            John,

            That’s exactly what the political powers want us to think.

            That the little guys money is insignificant and uninfluecial.

            Notice they’re still carve out protections for PAC s and party money in the amendment and every single campaign finance “reform” ever suggested. It’s only the individuals moneies they seek to stop.

          • John Wylie says

            Well I agree that the PACs should be regulated as well. In fact, I am going to make everyone’s head explode with this one, but I think that the public funding of elections is the most fair.

          • Tarheel says

            If by Public financing you mean that candidates solicit and receive contributions from American citizens as those citizens desire to assist in financing … I agree. ;-)

        • Bennett Willis says

          While there are letters to the editor of my local paper accusing it of being left driven in all things, I find that I am usually convinced it is definitely leaning right.

          Maybe we notice the speech that we disagree with or find unthinking.

  2. dr. james willingham says

    Have you heard about the 42 democrats who have sponsored a bill to repeal the First Amendment to the Constitution?

  3. dr. james willingham says

    Don’t know how I got the above question listed twice? Once is enough.

  4. says

    Money cant buy love, but it sure can buy an election.
    Our system depends on right living, right seeking informed people, both those that run and those that vote [or should].
    Thus the system is broke.
    because the nation is broke.
    And the nation is broke because it is becoming more and more rebellious against God.

    Only the Spirit and the Gospel can fix it.
    Our part is to proclaim the Gospel.

    • Christiane says

      ‘PROCLAIM’ the gospel

      . . . yes, the proclamation of the Good News has always been the mission of the Church, because the Church is commanded to go forth and present Christ to the world

  5. dr. james willingham says

    And most folks, due to brainwashing, don’t think there is a conspiracy…..!

    • Bennett Willis says

      James, if there is a conspiracy, its objective is certainly to favor those who have the money to control the speech that we hear/read on our media.

  6. dr. james willingham says

    Bennett: The conspiracy has been buying elections for over a century, namely and mainly, by controlling both parties. If one follows the money trail, one finds the big givers giving to both sides, all of which ensures that some favors will be returned. In any case, the money power is the Federal Reserve System with the boards and who sets on them and who has what invested in them. The conspiracy has been alive and well and around for a long time. Take the Civil War and the folks in Europe who planned it and send provocateurs to America some 20 years or more before to get the ball rolling. Ever hear of the Knights of the Golden Circle or the Copperheads, etc.? And I have not even begun to list the outfits like the Illuminati, the Skull and Bones, and a host of others. I once checked the lists of the Library of Congress for books written on the Conspiracy in the period from 1800-1820. Velly interesting. Fast forward to the 20th century and years of reading and research on the issue. The trouble is that the conspirators hate the true faith, the biblical faith, if you please, and old Quigley in Tragedy and Hope made it plain. Perhaps one of these days, I will list the views they support and the views they oppose.

    • Bennett Willis says

      James, this is the first I had heard that the Civil War was a European conspiracy–promoted by, anyhow. Since most of the exports from the US to Europe (at the time) were cotton from the South, did Europe support (in general) the South or did they go against their apparent economic interests and support the North? How did the Civil War work out for them?

      • says

        I know little to nothing (mostly on the nothing side) about conspiracies but I am aware that some of the power nations other of Europe encouraged the Civil War because they saw it as an energizer for westward expansion and weakening the nation for their own advantage. Spain had hopes of reclaiming footing in Mexico by again placing territory of the US into the Mexican state. To be sure what I have just said is about the extent of my knowledge on the subject.

        I am not real sure what my area of expertise is but I am pretty sure it is not this.

  7. Bart Barber says

    I’m terribly concerned about the corrupting role of money in politics. I think that we should take all necessary steps to limit the corrupting influence of money in politics so that we can have free and fair elections.

    Therefore, I would support a measure to ban from elected office forever any politician who promised or made mention of any government program or spending measure that would entice voters to cast a vote for him in the hopes that more tax money would be spend upon that voter.

    After all, the only way a vote can ever be purchased for money is if a politician “bribes” a large number of voters by the promise of government largesse. The richest man in the country has one vote. The poorest man in the country has one vote. The wealthiest corporation in the country has zero votes. Money only corrupts elections if voters—and large numbers of them—are willing to sell out their principles for the promise of money that they hope will come to them.

    • Bennett Willis says

      Bart, It seems to me that if this were strictly so (your last paragraph), then there would be no point to the attack ads that so much money is poured into. The bulk of the voters have made up their minds several days (or even months) before the election and go vote that way. So the money that goes for political advertising is directed at a very small fraction of the voters whose votes can be changed by “revelations” of error on the part of one side or the other.

      But I too am concerned about the amount of money that pours into campaigns and the ideas that come with it. And the access to the elected official that also comes with the money. It takes many letters from many people to outweigh a serious discussion over a game of golf or dinner–it it can be done at all. The people you see tend to be the people you “believe.”

      One use for primaries (in Iowa or where ever) is that the people running for office have to sit down over coffee and listen to a great variety of people. Surely this has some effect on the person running for office.