Wednesday, October 17, 2007

My first goal in re-inventing the USA...

... as listed in my first post, is to repeal the 17th amendment, the one changing senators elected by their state legislatures to being elected directly by the people. So what can be wrong with that?

It was ratified April 8, 1913, meaning that senators elected after 1918 had all been elected directly. What was the most significant change in Senate management after that? According to the World Almanac, in 1920 we got the first Senate party leaders, Dem Oscar Underwood of Alabama for the minority in 1920 and Repub Charles Curtiss of Kansas for the majority in 1925, followed by, among others, LBJ, Bob ("I never met a tax I didn't like") Dole, Tom Daschle, and ...Harry Reid! I rest my case.

The point being that the founders wanted the state governments to have a direct say in the national government, and that these reps not be pandering to the fickle general electorate - no more than House reps with more expensive suits, and three times longer terms - that much harder to replace when they screw up.

A glaring example of this is Snarlin' Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania. In 1987, when he had no reelection to worry his ugly little head for 5 years, he voted against Bob Bork for the USSC, but in 1991, only a year away from facing the voters again, he was just fine w/ Clarence Thomas. Of course, all of this is way over the heads of all of you out there who believe the USSC should be giving the people what they "need" instead of seeing to it that the US Constitution is followed.

Another positive result of eliminating the 17th, with the senators representing the state governments instead of the rabble, a lot of other problems would be easier to solve (withholding taxes, Roe v. Wade, the runaway courts, that sort of thing.)


My home town of South Haven, MI (just a beautiful place BTW) is on the east shore of Lake Michigan, but the west end of Van Buren County, the county seat of which, Paw Paw MI, is at the other end of (diagram that!) Around 1900, South Haven had grown a lot, was a major lake port (even had a street named Paw Paw), while Paw Paw, was still stuck out in the middle of nowhere, but still the county seat.

So the people of South Haven decided to fix that, and had a proposition to move the County Government to South Haven from that other place put on the ballot. This prop promptly lost (I don't think even close.)

So how did the South Havenites respond? Remember that Paw Paw Street? Well. it's not Paw Paw street anymore, for sure. Not only that, but it's now named for some obscure southern state, Indiana, or something.

A few years ago I had occasion to go to Paw Paw to look up some family records. I remarked to the clerk about their beautifully restored 1890s court house, comparing it to the new brick barn neighboring Allegan County (where I still had my parents' house) built to replace their beautiful 1890s court house. She thanked me w/ a smile, then I told her about the county seat change proposal, and resulting street name change. Clerk: "That sounds just like South Haven!"

You really had to be there ( and from there, I guess.)


After being in the work force for 60 years, mostly as an employee, but some hiring, too, it occurred to me one day that you should never work for anyone you wouldn't hire, and never hire anyone you wouldn't work for.

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