An atheist's critique of The Constitution of the United States
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03-01-2012, 11:50 AM
RE: An atheist's critique of The Constitution of the United States
I found the official congressional version online if anyone wants to study it. I tried to study it years ago but found it to be very boring. I think I like the BC version better.

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10-01-2012, 08:24 PM
RE: An atheist's critique of The Constitution of the United States
Alright. I've got some free time. Let's start chiseling away at this thing again. None of the other Articles are as long as the first one, so this should be a breeze.


Article 2


Section 1




The President

[Image: presseal.jpg]



Clause 1. The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America. He shall hold his Office during the Term of four Years, and, together with the Vice-President chosen for the same Term, be elected, as follows:

-The President has all the executive power. Hopefully at some point in this document we'll discover exactly what "executive power" means.



2. Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors, equal to the whole Number of Senators and Representatives to which the State may be entitled in the Congress: but no Senator or Representative, or Person holding an Office of Trust or Profit under the United States, shall be appointed an Elector.

-"Here the Framers establish the Electoral College, creating a rather convoluted system for electing the president. Each state gets a number of electoral votes equal to its number of senators plus its number of US representatives; this system splits the difference between allocating electoral votes proportional to population or equally to each state. Over the course of American history, this system has allowed four candidates to win the presidency despite losing the nationwide popular vote, most recently George W. Bush in 2000."



3. The Electors shall meet in their respective States, and vote by Ballot for two Persons, of whom one at least shall not be an Inhabitant of the same State with themselves. And they shall make a List of all the Persons voted for, and of the Number of Votes for each; which List they shall sign and certify, and transmit sealed to the Seat of the Government of the United States, directed to the President of the Senate. The President of the Senate shall, in the Presence of the Senate and House of Representatives, open all the Certificates, and the Votes shall then be counted. The Person having the greatest Number of Votes shall be the President, if such Number be a Majority of the whole Number of Electors appointed; and if there be more than one who have such Majority, and have an equal Number of Votes, then the House of Representatives shall immediately chuse by Ballot one of them for President; and if no Person have a Majority, then from the five highest on the List the said House shall in like Manner...


-This incredibly long and worthless description of electing a president was changed by the 12th Amendment after a botched election in 1800 when Thomas Jefferson tied with Aaron Burr.



4. The Congress may determine the Time of chusing the Electors, and the Day on which they shall give their Votes; which Day shall be the same throughout the United States.

-Congress gets to choose when the election will be held... though they've had no reason to change the date for quite some time.



5. No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any Person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States.

-Which of course doesn't include secret Muslim Kenyan Nazis who only seek to destroy wholesome Christian America. But seriously, I wish there were more qualifications to be president. Like education or experience or "can't believe that the world is 6000 years old."



6. In Case of the Removal of the President from Office, or of his Death, Resignation, or Inability to discharge the Powers and Duties of the said Office,9 the Same shall devolve on the VicePresident, and the Congress may by Law provide for the Case of Removal, Death, Resignation or Inability, both of the President and Vice President, declaring what Officer shall then act as President, and such Officer shall act accordingly, until the Disability be removed, or a President shall be elected.

-Details what to do if the President or VP dies or leaves office. Was revamped by the 25th Amendment, which we'll get to eventually.



7. The President shall, at stated Times, receive for his Services, a Compensation, which shall neither be encreased nor diminished during the Period for which he shall have been elected, and he shall not receive within that Period any other Emolument from the United States, or any of them.

-The President is paid a salary, which cannot be changed during the presidential term. Currently, the President is paid 400,000 dollars a year. Which I believe is the same salary as a backup kicker in the NFL. God we have some messed up priorities in this country.



8. Before he enter on the Execution of his Office, he shall take the following Oath or Affirmation:--"I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."

-No mention of a Bible or God. However there is no oath for Vice President listed in the Constitution, so of course in typical American fashion, it was created secular... and in 1884 they added a certain part.

"I, AB, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God."

I still don't know why they use a Bible. What if a Muslim is elected? (In America? Yeah right.) Will we swear him in on the Koran?



Section 2




Clause 1. The President shall be Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States, and of the Militia of the several States, when called into the actual Service of the United States; he may require the Opinion, in writing, of the principal Officer in each of the executive Departments, upon any Subject relating to the Duties of their respective Offices, and he shall have Power to grant Reprieves and Pardons for Offences against the United States, except in Cases of Impeachment.

-The president is the boss of all things military. And he can pardon felons.



2. He shall have Power, by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, to make Treaties, provided two thirds of the Senators present concur; and he shall nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, Judges of the supreme Court, and all other Officers of the United States, whose Appointments are not herein otherwise provided for, and which shall be established by Law: but the Congress may by Law vest the Appointment of such inferior Officers, as they think proper, in the President alone, in the Courts of Law, or in the Heads of Departments.


-He has the power (with 2/3rd Senate permission) to make treaties with other countries. He also has the power to nominate all appointed government officials (with some permission again).



3. The President shall have Power to fill up all Vacancies that may happen during the Recess of the Senate, by granting Commissions which shall expire at the End of their next Session.

-Am I reading this correct? If the Senate is out of session... the President can hire temporary stand-ins to act as the Senate until the actual Senate reconvenes?



[Image: barack-obama-for-president.jpg]



Section 3




He shall from time to time give to the Congress Information of the State of the Union, and recommend to their Consideration such Measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient; he may, on extraordinary Occasions, convene both Houses, or either of them, and in Case of Disagreement between them, with Respect to the Time of Adjournment, he may adjourn them to such Time as he shall think proper; he shall receive Ambassadors and other public Ministers; he shall take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed, and shall Commission all the Officers of the United States.

-Lot of random things. President has to report the "state of the union" to Congress, which eventually becomes an official speech, delivered in January. He can call an emergency meeting of Congress if he needs to. He must follow all laws, all the time. And he can give commissions to officers in the military. Seems like a clause of side notes.



Section 4




The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.

-Self explanatory. Except for the "high Crimes and Misdemeanors" part. Can we impeach him over speeding tickets?

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10-01-2012, 08:26 PM
RE: An atheist's critique of The Constitution of the United States
(10-01-2012 08:24 PM)Buddy Christ Wrote:  The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.

-Self explanatory. Except for the "high Crimes and Misdemeanors" part. Can we impeach him over speeding tickets?

A speeding ticket seems more of a crime to me than a BJ, so yes, I say we can impeach him or her for speeding.

"All that is necessary for the triumph of Calvinism is that good Atheists do nothing." ~Eric Oh My
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11-01-2012, 08:51 AM
RE: An atheist's critique of The Constitution of the United States
(10-01-2012 08:24 PM)Buddy Christ Wrote:  3. The President shall have Power to fill up all Vacancies that may happen during the Recess of the Senate, by granting Commissions which shall expire at the End of their next Session.

-Am I reading this correct? If the Senate is out of session... the President can hire temporary stand-ins to act as the Senate until the actual Senate reconvenes?

Actually this just recently happened although there is some disagreement as to whether it was legal. The President, when Congress in on recess, can appoint people to empty cabinet and departmental positions without approval from Congress.

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2012/01/...s-at-home/


Quote:Obama Bypasses Senate, Installs New Consumer Chief

Published January 04, 2012 | Associated Press


advertisement

A defiant President Barack Obama, tired of Senate Republicans stalling his nominee to lead a new consumer protection agency, put him in charge Wednesday over their opposition.

"I refuse to take `no' for an answer," the president said.

Outraged GOP leaders in Congress immediately suggested that courts would determine whether Richard Cordray's appointment was illegal.

With a director in place, Obama said the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau can start overseeing the mortgage companies, payday lenders, debt collectors and other financial operations often blamed for practices that helped undermine the economy.

Obama announced the move with Cordray by his side before a cheering crowd in Ohio, a politically vital state where Cordray once was attorney general.

"Every day that we waited was another day when millions of Americans are left unprotected," Obama.

Until Cordray took over, the office didn't have all the tools needed "to protect consumers against dishonest mortgage brokers or payday lenders, and debt collectors who are taking advantage of consumers," Obama said. "And that's inexcusable. It's wrong."

In political terms, the recess appointment during the congressional break raised the level of confrontation for a president seeking re-election by championing the middle class and challenging an unpopular Congress. Acting right after Tuesday's GOP presidential caucuses in Iowa, Obama sought to grab attention and show he would not be slowed, making his most brazen leap-frog over Congress.

Senate Republicans had halted Cordray's nomination because they think the consumer agency is too powerful and unaccountable.

The Senate's top Republican, Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, accused Obama of an unprecedented power grab that "arrogantly circumvented the American people."

Added House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio: "It's clear the president would rather trample our system of separation of powers than work with Republicans to move the country forward. This action goes beyond the president's authority, and I expect the courts will find the appointment to be illegitimate."

It was unclear who might undertake a legal fight. But people familiar with the matter said an outside private group regulated by the consumer agency might be in the best legal position.

By going around the Senate, where Democrats hold an edge but Republicans can block action, Obama essentially declared that the chamber's short off-and-on sessions are a sham intended to block him, but don't prevent him from such an appointment.

Yet it was his own party that started the practice when Republican George W. Bush was president.

In reality, Obama had little choice to get the consumer agency fully running after months of stalemate.

White House communications director Dan Pfeiffer announced Obama's move on Twitter after senior administration officials first confirmed it to The Associated Press. Obama spokesman Jay Carney said White House lawyers have determined Obama is within his bounds to appoint Cordray now.

Cordray, who's expected to take over this week, stands to serve for at least the next two years, covering the length of the Senate's session.

At a high school in the Cleveland suburb of Shaker Heights, Obama said Republicans were only blocking Cordray because they wanted to water down consumer protections.

"I'm not going to stand by while a minority in the Senate puts party ideology ahead of the people we were elected to serve," he said.

More than a standoff over one significant appointment, the fight speaks to the heart of a presidential campaign under way. Presiding over a troubled but improving economy, Obama's must persuade a weary middle class that he is their advocate, while fending off criticism from Republicans challengers and lawmakers.

Obama has constitutional power to make appointments during a congressional recess.

Expressly to keep that from happening, Republicans in the Senate have had the Senate running in "pro forma" sessions, meaning open for business in name with no actual business planned. Democrats started the practice under Bush to halt him from making recess appointments.

The Senate held such a session on Tuesday and planned another one on Friday. Republicans contend Obama cannot make a recess appointment during such a break of less than three days, based on years of precedent, and they point to comments by Obama's own Justice Department echoing that view.

Regardless, the Obama White House now contends such an approach is a gimmick.

For all practical purposes, the Senate is in recess and Obama is free to make the appointment on his own, without Senate confirmation, administration officials said.

McConnell shot back that Obama's move "lands this appointee in uncertain legal territory, threatens the confirmation process and fundamentally endangers the Congress' role in providing a check on the excesses of the executive branch."

The president also was expected to announce other recess appointments, possibly including nominees to the National Labor Relations Board.

Republicans have had little opposition if any to the qualifications of Cordray. Their objection is with the consumer agency itself.

Obama and his team say lawmakers should try to revise the Wall Street oversight law if they don't like it, not keep the agency from performing its job.

Before his remarks Wednesday, Obama met with a family that got taken advantage of by a mortgage broker. He wanted to use their story as an example of how the consumer agency can crack down on such practices.

Obama was focusing on the most Democratic congressional district in Ohio, a Cleveland suburb, a day after Mitt Romney won Iowa's Republican presidential caucuses by just eight votes. Obama's trip signals the White House's intent to keep the president in the public eye even as the political world focuses on the GOP's selection process.

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17-07-2012, 11:20 AM (This post was last modified: 17-07-2012 01:13 PM by TrainWreck.)
RE: An atheist's critique of The Constitution of the United States
Quote: The intro, called the Preamble, establishes the basis of American
government with its first three words. "We the people" establishes the
idea that all government power is derived only from the consent of the
people. Then the founding fathers use the rest of the world's longest
run-on sentence to simply state, "This is our official government law
charter."
The rest of the run-on sentence describes the social institutions that they seek to organize
  1. jurisprudence - justice - Judicial Branch
  2. prosecution - "justice and tranquility" - Justice Department
  3. diplomacy - "general welfare" - Executive Branch
  4. commerce/taxation - "provide for the common defense" - Senate - central bank
  5. ideologies/organizations - "blessings of liberty" - House of Representatives - business/political/ontological/religious organization
  6. documentation - "ordain and establish" - Department of the Interior
Good stuff, I use it to organize my rendition of organizing a constitutional system for all three levels; federal, state, and local. But I define more detailed mission/preambles for the state constitutions and municipal charters to include institutions like community, industry, civil liberties, political organization, religious/ontological orders, and educational interfaces.

Humanism - ontological doctrine that posits that humans define reality
Theism - ontological doctrine that posits a supernatural entity creates and defines reality
Atheism - political doctrine opposed to theist doctrine in public policy
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17-07-2012, 11:38 AM (This post was last modified: 17-07-2012 01:43 PM by TrainWreck.)
RE: An atheist's critique of The Constitution of the United States
Quote:
America, home of the free! Where all men are created equal. Because 1 = 3/5ths in Constitution math.
You would think that with the confusion of this mathematical computation, and the continued claim from black Americans, that the Founders were inherently flawed by their acceptance of slavery, that the blacks would take the time and write a more perfect constitution. But no, it appears that they expect whitey to fix it to their satisfaction.

It's going to be a very hard pill for them to swallow that whitey wins the technological culture war again - and probably once and for ever.

Quote: Two Senators per state, one vote per Senator. We amended the "Senators
aren't chosen by the people" part after widespread accusations of
corruption in the late nineteenth century.

Lots and lots of words just to explain that 1/3rd of the Senate seats
will be up for election every 2 years. This keeps fresh people in the
Senate and ensures that the whole Senate isn't up for election at the
same time.
Yeah, what happened was that the state constitutions were so erroneous, and the ideologies so incompatible in the states that the disorderliness in the state legislatures inability to appoint representatives (political gridlock), caused the unwitting citizens to think that they were under-served representation in the Senate, because the politicians did not understand that the "grid lock" was a symptom of the erroneousness of the state constitutions, or they did not know how to fix the constitutions. And what the 17 Amendment did was elevate the disorderliness of the incompatable ideologies to the federal government to what we experience as political gridlock in the federal government. And it probably locked-in the two powerhouse parties, as well, because of the two appointment/elections per state - if there were three appointments per state, it might generate a third party.

And, basically, since our society has advanced in technology and understanding organization - we pretty much have everything set up, and don't necessarilly need all the "politics of Washington," but if the people were to think that the politicians were not needed then the people would react by changing the government - so the politicians make themselves look busy with all the political banter that we recognize as illogical.

The next step to correcting it is to reorganize the government, a revolution, or a constitutional convention; but not a declaration of independence - we're not going to kick people out of the country.

But what I am going to try to do is devise a constitutional system that can be replicated/translated by other languages and nations, so as to compel them to be as prosperous as the USA. You see, as you noted the Constitution is very old language and convoluted, because back then the people were very poor, did not understand all the need for government, and the people in the government were not sure how to organize the social institutions into decent services. And new technology helps solve those problems, but if the constitution is not updated, it's erroneousness is exploited with corruption - good and bad. Without a doubt, some how our constitution generated considerable technological advancements, probably by oppressing non-whites; but ultimately nobody has been oppressed from writing constitutions, they just do not know how.

Other countries don't understand how our system works, because it does not work, "to the letter," how the constitution is written. We understand how it works, because we understand some of the corruptions, and the politicians feed us enough bulshit to keep us occupied.

Humanism - ontological doctrine that posits that humans define reality
Theism - ontological doctrine that posits a supernatural entity creates and defines reality
Atheism - political doctrine opposed to theist doctrine in public policy
I am right, and you are wrong - I hope you die peacefullyCool
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17-07-2012, 11:53 AM (This post was last modified: 18-07-2012 11:38 AM by TrainWreck.)
RE: An atheist's critique of The Constitution of the United States
(11-01-2012 08:51 AM)germanyt Wrote:  
(10-01-2012 08:24 PM)Buddy Christ Wrote:  3. The President shall have Power to fill up all Vacancies that may happen during the Recess of the Senate, by granting Commissions which shall expire at the End of their next Session.

-Am I reading this correct? If the Senate is out of session... the President can hire temporary stand-ins to act as the Senate until the actual Senate reconvenes?
Actually this just recently happened although there is some disagreement as to whether it was legal. The President, when Congress in on recess, can appoint people to empty cabinet and departmental positions without approval from Congress.
That would be correct - the clause is referring to cabinet officials

Quote: Here the Framers establish the Electoral College, creating a rather convoluted system for electing the president.
It probably has to do with understanding the intellectual abilities of the voters to determine the qualifications of candidates compared to the politicians abilities - a problem we still have, because the job description remains unclear in our age of technological advancement where we can probably define the job description more accurately.

Quote: The President has all the executive power. Hopefully at some point in
this document we'll discover exactly what "executive power" means.
It means the authority, of the constituents, to exercise and delegate the use of lethal force in the efforts to protect the sovereignty of the federal government.

Humanism - ontological doctrine that posits that humans define reality
Theism - ontological doctrine that posits a supernatural entity creates and defines reality
Atheism - political doctrine opposed to theist doctrine in public policy
I am right, and you are wrong - I hope you die peacefullyCool
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