Constitutionally Speaking

The book club in Albany is currently reading the 5000 Year Leap. The book is a simple read about the founders of this country and the principles that they considered when writing our founding documents.

After reading the book, it is clear that this country has abandoned many of those principles. Currently we are on a fast track, not to return to the original intention of the founders, but to distance ourselves even farther from that intention.

How can we get back to the garden? A new effort is being entertained by the states. Resolutions are being passed to return the power to the respective states and limit the size of the federal government, States’ Rights.

Georgia Senate Resolution 632 passed, “affirming states’ rights based on Jeffersonian principles; and for other purposes.” Nine states have passed similar resolutions and twenty-five others have resolutions calling for states’ rights pending.

A few states have taken the measure a step further. Montana has passed a bill (HB 246) that would allow guns and ammunition that are produced in the state and remain in the state to be regulated by the state, not the federal government. The bill will become law on October 10, 2009 and is suspected to be challenged by the Supreme Court shortly after. Texas is considering similar legislation.

Article 1, Section 8, Clause 3 of the Constitution states that the federal government has the power, “…to regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes;” Because the federal government gets its power from the states according to the Tenth Amendment, the government has no power to regulate intrastate commerce. This should prove to be a fascinating court case when the law is challenged.

There is talk about calling for a Constitutional Convention to repeal or alter Article I, Section 8, Clause 1 which gives the federal government the power to collect taxes. It is believed that such a Constitutional Convention, or even the threat of one, will help to curtail the spending spree that the federal government is currently enjoying.

All of this talk of States’ Rights is fascinating, but I have to wonder if these resolutions are just words on paper. Since the War Between the States, the states have surrendered more and more of their power to the central government until state boundaries have become little more than historical lines on a map. Are these resolutions too little too late or are they the beginning of something big? Time will tell.


Understanding the Damage of Government Intervention

One of the most hotly debated issues today is probably government involvement in the economy. This is a point that I feel deserves some very careful examination. Now, I’m not an economist, or a statistician or anything else of the type. I’m just a guy who can use his own head, and wanted to lay out a few things for you to think about.

First, let’s assume we can agree that the turning point for economic policy was during the Great Depression with FDR’s “New Deal” policies. As such, I took an average of recession lengths and time between the start of recessions from before and after the Great Depression. Unfortunately, these numbers only tell part of the story.

First, the average length for a recession (then called “Panics”) prior to the Great Depression was actually 4.1 years, while post Great Depression was only 1.21 years. Obviously, this looks like a strike against truly free markets, right? Well, not so fast.

You see, the time between recessions prior to the Great Depression was an average of 13.4 years, while post FDR we had only 9.75 years. What’s more, during that time we had two huge wars that artificially propped up the market, namely World War II and Vietnam. This caused gaps of 24 years and 13 years respectively. These numbers skew the average a fair amount, obviously.

You see, I’ve never claimed that Keynesian ideas that government spending can get us out of a recession are actually wrong. They’re not. What my claim is, and has always been, is that the prosperity is artificial. The 24 year period post World War II was a result of debt spending to finance the war, yes, but also the lack of anyone’s ability to actually spend any money. Rationing was the norm in those days, and both adults in a household were typically bringing in money. The guys fighting the wars often had wives at home working in places like aircraft factories (my grandmother worked in a munitions plant for example). This forced savings, and permitted people to buy things like cars and houses in great amounts. It created an era of prosperity.

However, this prosperity was an illusion. Behind the scenes was massive debt, and 8 years after the war ended, we were slammed with yet another recession. This is similar to what happened during Vietnam, as more people were working to support the war, and large numbers of Americans were being drafted (and plenty were volunteering) to go to war, which kept even more people employed. Only this time, the war was barely over before we were smacked with yet another recession.

I should also, in the interest of fair disclosure, mention that I did not count the Long Depression.  The reason for that is that I don’t feel it was truly a recession.  Production actually increased fourfold during that period, which is hardly indicative of a recession.  Instead, prices went out of whack as the United States tried to get the US back on the gold standard, among other factors that were based outside of this country.

Recessions are a part of life.  Keynsian ideologies haven’t done a thing to prevent them from happening, and it is an ideology that requires that governments take on massive debt and tax the people to pay for it.  Since the numbers don’t show this to actually solve anything long term, why not let people keep their money and stimulate the economy that way.  It’s what this nation was founded on, so lets just step up and return to a true free market economy.

Government intervention doesn’t actually work, and it provides yet another way for Uncle Sam to take away our freedoms.  It’s time for this to end.

Mayor Adams: A Polygraph?

WALB’s website has the initial story of Mayor Willie Adams issuing a challenge.  He challenges Carol Fullerton and WG&L General Manager Lem Edwards to take a polygraph, along with himself.  He says that he “wants to know who’s lying,” regarding Representative Fullerton’s removal from the WG&L board.    This, he claims, will answer questions once and for all about who is telling the truth regarding Rep. Fullerton’s dismissal. Continue reading

A Sign Ordinance? Aren’t There Bigger Fish to Fry?

So, we live in the land of the free, right? We have the right to do as we wish on our own property, right? Wrong! WALB reports that Code Enforcement officers are cracking down on violators of a new sign ordinance.  Local car dealerships are up in arms, since it bans all kinds of things like streamers, flags, banners, you know…the stuff you’re used to seeing around car lots. Continue reading

John Oxendine and Liberty: Series At a Glance

Here’s the entire ‘John Oxendine and Liberty’ series in one spot for easy viewing:

Part 1: Intro, Transportation and Values

Part 2a: Oxendine Business Plan: Goal to Agriculture

Part 2b: Oxendine Business Plan: Working for Georgia Business

Part 2c: Oxendine Business Plan: The Business of Georgia is Business

Part 3: Jeff’s Conclusion

John Oxendine and Liberty, Part 3: Jeff’s Conclusion

Hopefully my readers now know exactly how ignorant, theocratic, and hypocritical this ‘politics as usual’ politician named John Oxendine is and intends to be as Governor.

I wrote the following nearly two weeks ago in my introduction to Part 1 of this ‘John Oxendine and Liberty’ series, and I believe it all the more now, after having looked in depth at his positions as noted on his website:

You see, quite honestly John Oxendine is a theocratic Statist of the worst sort. While this comes into play somewhat in his current position as Insurance Commissioner, it will be one of the greatest tragedies this state has ever experienced if he somehow lays claim to the Governor’s Mansion.

I’ve also come to find out that ‘ignorant’ and ‘hypocritical’ also apply to Mr. Oxendine, and I sincerely hope that you will join me in working to defeat him in the GOP primary next July,as I believe him to be worse than any politician I’ve yet seen running for Governor – but I could be proven wrong in future ‘Candidate and Liberty’ series.

As always, thank you for reading SWGA Politics. (Now if we can just get some of y’all to comment more… :D)

John Oxendine and Liberty, Part 2c: Oxendine Business Plan: The Business of Georgia Is Business

The Business of Georgia is Business

The choice in 2010 is clear. Georgia can continue down the same road of traditional politicians putting ego before policy, personal political gain before the taxpayers or Georgia can elect a pro-business, pro-free enterprise Governor.

As we’ve seen, such a pro-business, pro-free enterprise Governor is NOT you, Mr. Oxendine. In fact, as we’ve seen in this series, you are NOTHING but a ‘traditional politician putting ego before policy’ and ‘personal political gain before the taxpayers of Georgia’. Personally, I think the candidate that best espouses what you yourself just admitted Georgia needs is John Monds, but I will be continuing this series as more information from each of the candidates is released online, and I encourage any candidate that wishes to speak with SWGA Politics for an in-depth interview to please contact us, as we’d LOVE to talk to you personally. We try to be genuinely equal opportunity here, and as you’ve seen in these posts, I do admit when I agree with your positions.
[Continue reading]