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Thread: My Internal Conflict with SS and the Constitution

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    Re: My Internal Conflict with SS and the Constitution

    I looked over all of Section 8, including both the apparent thesis statement and the supporting principles and all I can say is that if Madison is correct that the elastic clause isn't meant to be used for such situations as SS, that was some of the worst writing I've ever seen. They teach you from the earliest grades that a thesis statement can't be too vague, just as it can't be too specific. The writers of the constitution, assuming they meant the meaning you indicate, must have been exhausted, confused, or just plain having a bad day when they wrote that section. I'm sorry: but it says very specifically:
    The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States.
    Nowhere in that thesis does it state the power to do all that according to the below options
    Nor does it say that there shall be any limitations in number, size, or variety of provisions for defense or welfare.
    I can understand exactly what it is your arguing- that if the thesis was meant to be taken as is, the list below would be useless. I'm just saying that the writing is absolutely dreadful, and that I utterly agree with the President using that as the elastic clause, as a totally viable loophole. I would too if I were in his position, since as far as I am concerned that loophole makes what he is doing entirely constitutional. It's neither his fault nor responsibility if the Founds left a gaping hole for him to work with.

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    Re: My Internal Conflict with SS and the Constitution

    Quote Originally Posted by Belgarath View Post
    I looked over all of Section 8, including both the apparent thesis statement and the supporting principles and all I can say is that if Madison is correct that the elastic clause isn't meant to be used for such situations as SS, that was some of the worst writing I've ever seen.
    Not at all. Madison's argument regarding the common defense/general welfare clause isn't tied to the Elastic Clause.

    Nor does it say that there shall be any limitations in number, size, or variety of provisions for defense or welfare.
    If your interpretation is correct, you must then explain the inclusion of the 16 clauses between the first and the last.
    Specifically, if, inherent in the common defense/general welfare clause is the power to do anyhting regarding the common defense/general welfare, why was it necessary to specifically give Congress the power to raise armies and a navy?

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    Re: My Internal Conflict with SS and the Constitution

    Quote Originally Posted by Belgarath View Post
    I looked over all of Section 8, including both the apparent thesis statement and the supporting principles and all I can say is that if Madison is correct that the elastic clause isn't meant to be used for such situations as SS, that was some of the worst writing I've ever seen. They teach you from the earliest grades that a thesis statement can't be too vague, just as it can't be too specific. The writers of the constitution, assuming they meant the meaning you indicate, must have been exhausted, confused, or just plain having a bad day when they wrote that section. I'm sorry: but it says very specifically:

    Nowhere in that thesis does it state the power to do all that according to the below options
    Nor does it say that there shall be any limitations in number, size, or variety of provisions for defense or welfare.
    I can understand exactly what it is your arguing- that if the thesis was meant to be taken as is, the list below would be useless. I'm just saying that the writing is absolutely dreadful, and that I utterly agree with the President using that as the elastic clause, as a totally viable loophole. I would too if I were in his position, since as far as I am concerned that loophole makes what he is doing entirely constitutional. It's neither his fault nor responsibility if the Founds left a gaping hole for him to work with.
    I am not sure why anyone would question the words of Madison, Pendleton, Randolph, and Nicholas, but maybe someone today could have more incite into the drafting of the Constitution than those of the day or even those who were actually there. It baffles me, but many things baffle me.

    Also, if the "general welfare" clause is all-empowering, why was the Constitution amended to offer this ditty:

    "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people."

    While all the other clauses of Article I, section 8 apparently are to be considered as nothing more than superfluous information, are we also to consider Amendment X as meaningless since it would not negate an all-powerful Federal authority.

    Please explain your thoughts on what looks evident to me that there is a complete contradiction in the facts as compared to your argument. Secondly, does it really matter what the Constitution says? If yes, why? If no, why not?

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    Re: My Internal Conflict with SS and the Constitution

    Yes, the Constitution matters- it is the primary source of our knowledge regarding where the government is supposed to go. At least theoretically speaking, it's an extremely well written document that covers most of the bases on how we are to build our government.
    I think that Amendment X is not a contradiction- what it is saying is that those issues which are not critical to the immediate welfare or benefit of the people should be handled by the states- the issue of homosexual marriage is a perfect example. While clearly the government has decided that marriage is an issue it should play a part in, nowhere in the constitution does it have any kind of mandate as to who can marry. The power to decide who marries is neither delegated to the US nor prohibited by it to the states- therefore it should be decided by the states. I believe immigration and abortion fall under that same category. My guess, though obviously I was not there at the time, is that perhaps those 16 (I think you said that's how many) examples were just that- examples. They were things that the government should handle, but they were also kind of a measure- a way of knowing whether something fell under the constitution or not. That would be my best guess, because if the Founders wrote that loophole and didn't expect people to tap it, they were less clever than I give them credit for.

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    Re: My Internal Conflict with SS and the Constitution

    Since the first congress we have had an ever expanded interpretation of our constitution. Whether you agree with it or not SS has become a cornerstone to supplement peoples private retirement funds. If we repealed it because of a text book view of the constitution we would be doing more damage than good. This would go against the spirit of the constitution. The amendment process is so corrupted by politics and special interests we would never be able to get one through even if the amendment would be a good thing for the American people. In addition the SCOTUS ruled that SS was constitutional and we have not needed to do that. At this point that ruling has allow many people to become reliant on SS as a buffer against increasing healthcare costs and the rising cost of living.

    I agree that the writing of constitution could have been more specific, but I believe this is a cause of disagreements between our many forefathers on how government should work.

    There are private funds that can be more profitable than SS but not as secure. Could you list some of the ideas you mentioned earlier (stock market, 401k, ect.?)?

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    Re: My Internal Conflict with SS and the Constitution

    Quote Originally Posted by Belgarath View Post
    Yes, the Constitution matters- it is the primary source of our knowledge regarding where the government is supposed to go. At least theoretically speaking, it's an extremely well written document that covers most of the bases on how we are to build our government.
    I think that Amendment X is not a contradiction- what it is saying is that those issues which are not critical to the immediate welfare or benefit of the people should be handled by the states- the issue of homosexual marriage is a perfect example. While clearly the government has decided that marriage is an issue it should play a part in, nowhere in the constitution does it have any kind of mandate as to who can marry. The power to decide who marries is neither delegated to the US nor prohibited by it to the states- therefore it should be decided by the states. I believe immigration and abortion fall under that same category. My guess, though obviously I was not there at the time, is that perhaps those 16 (I think you said that's how many) examples were just that- examples. They were things that the government should handle, but they were also kind of a measure- a way of knowing whether something fell under the constitution or not. That would be my best guess, because if the Founders wrote that loophole and didn't expect people to tap it, they were less clever than I give them credit for.
    Guess? You have provided your opinion. I wish you would provide a bit of proof for your theory. Examples? Can you provide any evidence anywhere that say these were examples? Sorry, but you are now grasping for straws.

    I believe that you know that your theory is not based on any facts, but only your desire to have big government so they can provide whatever you might want them to provide. Someday, I wish someone would provide a bit of proof for their theories. Let me now find some quotes on either limited government and/or enumerated powers.

    Questions for you to ponder. No answer is needed:

    1. Why was a Constitutional Convention held in 1787? Please don't say to form a government as they had a government.
    2. At the beginning of the Convention, Edmund Randolph presented the Virginia Plan. He provided a list of defects of the Articles of Confederation. What were those defects?
    3. If the Federal Government has the authority to enact virtually any legislation, why have we had 28 amendments to the Constitution? For example, why didn't Congress just pass a bill that said the slaves were free and women could vote?
    4. If Congress has the constitutional authority to enact virtually any legislation, why do we have the Supreme Court of the United States and judicial review?
    5. In Marbury v. Madison, Chief Justice Marshall declared that the Supreme Court had judicial review. In order to find some law unconstitutional and null and void, what did he say had to exist for that to be done?

    Back in a bit with some more pertinent info from the Founders and others of their generation.

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    Re: My Internal Conflict with SS and the Constitution

    Quote Originally Posted by LesGovt View Post
    1. Why was a Constitutional Convention held in 1787? Please don't say to form a government as they had a government.
    2. At the beginning of the Convention, Edmund Randolph presented the Virginia Plan. He provided a list of defects of the Articles of Confederation. What were those defects?
    3. If the Federal Government has the authority to enact virtually any legislation, why have we had 28 amendments to the Constitution? For example, why didn't Congress just pass a bill that said the slaves were free and women could vote?
    4. If Congress has the constitutional authority to enact virtually any legislation, why do we have the Supreme Court of the United States and judicial review?
    5. In Marbury v. Madison, Chief Justice Marshall declared that the Supreme Court had judicial review. In order to find some law unconstitutional and null and void, what did he say had to exist for that to be done?

    Back in a bit with some more pertinent info from the Founders and others of their generation.
    Disregarding the pointless personal comments and degrading frustrations, I’ll actually answer some questions
    1. The AOC was far to weak- as I recall, Shay’s Rebellion showcased that.
    2. I don’t know the whole damn list, but I know off the top of my head he wanted increased checks and balances. Later, as the governor of Virginia, he begged the future US to accept it though, so I’m not sure which side you’re arguing from.
    3. Two reasons that I know of easily: 1. The Southern representatives would never have accepted it. 2. Slaves were a great source of labor- in reality, the only reason Lincoln even made the Civil War about slaves was the South was irreparably lost, and the North needed a rallying cause.
    4. The Supreme Court can rule laws unconstitutional and it has the final say on constitutionality- it’s opposing check is it has no power to enforce it’s decisions. But as long as we respect the constitution, the Supreme Court can overrule the Congress.
    5. I’m not sure what you’re referring to here, but my best guess is the principle that the Supreme Court can overrule the Congress.

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    Re: My Internal Conflict with SS and the Constitution

    Quote Originally Posted by Flyersfan314 View Post
    Since the first congress we have had an ever expanded interpretation of our constitution. Whether you agree with it or not SS has become a cornerstone to supplement peoples private retirement funds. If we repealed it because of a text book view of the constitution we would be doing more damage than good. This would go against the spirit of the constitution. The amendment process is so corrupted by politics and special interests we would never be able to get one through even if the amendment would be a good thing for the American people. In addition the SCOTUS ruled that SS was constitutional and we have not needed to do that. At this point that ruling has allow many people to become reliant on SS as a buffer against increasing healthcare costs and the rising cost of living.

    I agree that the writing of constitution could have been more specific, but I believe this is a cause of disagreements between our many forefathers on how government should work.

    There are private funds that can be more profitable than SS but not as secure. Could you list some of the ideas you mentioned earlier (stock market, 401k, ect.?)?
    I would agree that people have bastardized the meaning of the Constitution. On this we agree. Repealing that which is unconstitutional would cause some hardship for some, if it were not appropriately planned and phased out.

    Being constitutional is going going against the spirit of the Constitution. Surely you jest. The amendment process is the correct path for altering the Constitution. The Constitution is the supreme law of the land. The supreme law of the land says that to alter it, you must amend the Constitution. Are you saying that the Constitution is either not the supreme law or that we should ignore the rule of law? Or, are you suggesting both?

    Tyranny whether coming from a single despot, from a majority, or from a Court is still tyranny and should never occur. The decisions regarding aspects of the Social Security Act were not based on the Constitution and the intent of its authors, but were done for politically expedient reasons. Here is an interesting read on the subject:

    Is Social Security Constitutional? – Tenth Amendment Center

    When you say, "There are private funds that can be more profitable than SS but not as secure. Could you list some of the ideas you mentioned earlier (stock market, 401k, ect.?)?", to whom were you speaking? A gentleman in another thread suggested the following concept:

    1. If you like SS, you stay with the program as is, regardless of your current age or status.
    2. If you wish to opt out, you may do so, but 1% of your income goes to the public Social Security plan and then you can invest the rest as you please. The 1% goes to the public funds and does not return to the individual who opted out.

    The reason the person said that this was a viable plan was the 1% supposedly makes up enough dollars for those who drop out. I cannot verify that as it was his plan and not mine. Personally, I would like to see the entire program ended. While it won't matter to me, as I am retired, I would like to see the individual have his or her own account and purchase T-bills, Certificates of Deposits, or approved mutual funds. The mutual funds should need to have diversification in types of mutual funds, growth vs. income vs. international, etc. and should be purchased equally through more than two companies. The concept is to minimize the risk.

    For younger people, if they began this at 16 and did it until they retired, they could amass quite a sum of money due to better returns on investment. Second, it is their money and if they die before taking the funds out, the funds go to the person's heirs. Social Security may go to the spouse, but that's it. A separate program of insurance could be found privately to deal with disabled folks.

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    Re: My Internal Conflict with SS and the Constitution

    Quote Originally Posted by Belgarath View Post
    Disregarding the pointless personal comments and degrading frustrations,
    May I please see some evidence that proves what you have said?

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    Re: My Internal Conflict with SS and the Constitution

    Quote Originally Posted by LesGovt View Post
    Guess? You have provided your opinion. I wish you would provide a bit of proof for your theory. Examples? Can you provide any evidence anywhere that say these were examples? Sorry, but you are now grasping for straws.

    I believe that you know that your theory is not based on any facts, but only your desire to have big government so they can provide whatever you might want them to provide. Someday, I wish someone would provide a bit of proof for their theories.
    I perceive these comments as a slight against my arguments, a false assumption based on my arguments and a frustrated complaint which could have easily been reworded as a polite request. And I'm just getting warmed up. I am going to ask once, very nicely: please debate professionally and formally. If you agree with me, you obviously can be more informal as you will not be presenting rebuttal against my statements or trying to present a new point. But when you are responding negatively against a statement I have made, I would strongly recommend you be less personal, and cut straight to the point. Thank you in advance for your cooperation, both I and everyone else you will ever debate against appreciate it.

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