So, when writing a constitution I am writing it making a few assumptions, one is that the people are a virtuous, Christian people. This will impact on many things, one being that I don’t have a marriage clause, because in a healthy society, no one seriously considers that sodomites could wed each other, another is that I would not have women voting in this theoretical Federation, women’s suffrage has caused too much trouble and most women, are not interested in politics anyway. I did include a clause in Article II prohibiting women from voting, but was not sure if I should include it.
The preamble is the most iffy bit I think, I suppose each preamble will be different according to who writes it and among which people are having it written for them. I like the first Article, it lays down, much more clearly then say the American constitution, what is and is not allowed, the right to life specifically prohibits abortion, so that no harpy can claim she has the right to kill her child. The slavery clause also prohibits usury, this would be quite important in years to come, when banking interests are attempting, once again, to re-enslave the people, this would mean no credit cards with 20% APR, no Wonga.Com charging over 2000% interest on a short-term loan etc…
The Section IX is a lot more strict on government or enforcement agencies then is now the case in America or anywhere else I can think! It not only ensures someones house papers and effects can’t be searched without warrant, it makes the intercepting of communication, the hacking of their computers or a search of the person, something they would need a warrant for as well. Remember, this is for a theoretical situation, where we don’t have any immigrants, they all left and went home, so very little crime, a virtuous and Christian people etc, etc…
No faffing about with the right to keep and bear arms, not sure about Section XI, it is something I like the sound of, but it could be construed to allow sodomites to have their little ghettos where they hang out rainbow flags and felate each other on street corners! But it could also be used by Amish types, so I am minded to keep it! Any thoughts?
Section XVI, the reason I single out Senators as different, is because I would be attempting to establish a new aristocracy, or something approaching it.
Not sure about Article II, Section I, I want something that prohibits hordes of foreigners from trampling our lands, but, am not sure exactly how to word it!
Section II, I think with all the porn in the world, we need a censor, not someone censoring politics or blogs, but someone censoring vile images, which, are not speech!
And, most importantly, in Section III, the prohibition of political parties, this is essential. Even if this was the only thing I could actually accomplish, I would be happy if this was to pass. Political parties divide our peoples, it makes people stupid, they argue with someone they should be allying with, all because of some stupid personality or some idiotic policy, health care or pensions or some other irrelevancy. The worst thing about political parties, is that good people will say, ‘I shall vote conservative and they will stop immigration’, when they won’t, in fact they speed it up!!! Whilst lefties say, ‘I will vote Labour for peace and justice’ and they get Serbia, Sierra Leone, Iraq, Kosovo, Afghanistan and Iraq! Not exactly getting what you voted for is it? So political parties will be abolished, people can vote, but they shall vote for the man, instead of the party!
The General Assembly, I suppose you could call it whatever you want, a parliament, a congress, a council, but I think this is an improvement on what we have now, it allows for election to the House of Delegates, but the Senate is in effect a life appointment, each Senator can appoint a successor, most I imagine would appoint a son, but they don’t have to, if they have a feckless son, they might appoint a nephew or brother or even a friend. But just in case the appointed successor is not up to it, the rest of the Senators have a say in who gets to succeed, so that the truly feckless can be kept out, again, I am assuming that we are dealing with virtuous people here! The Delegates are elected in much the same way that the American Senate used to be elected, by the states/cantons, in the American constitution, the legislatures had the rights to elect a Senator, in my constitution, the state or canton will decide for itself, so it could be the legislature electing the delegates or it could be that they are elected by a popular vote, it will be up to the constituent member of the Federation.
The composition of the Senate and Delegates, restrains ‘democracy’ without abolishing it, it is not mob rule, but it does allow for some popular influence.
Another thing I like, it the option of a referendum on possibly every Act of the Assembly, this is used in Switzerland to keep their politicians in check, it is something they hate, but must put up with, and so it would be in my theoretical Federation.
The war powers of this Federation are retrained, and unless they have been invaded or attacked, they must seek a declaration of war from the General Assembly and must have a referendum on this, with each voter who approves war, signing himself up to fight. In this theoretical Federation, voting is public, not secret, people should not be ashamed of how they vote. Secrecy was a good idea when it was introduced, but it has passed its usefulness, especially in a virtuous polity. So we would know how people vote, and so could have internet voting, but with open voting everyones voting record could be accessed, this would keep voting fraud down and we could see who voted themselves into the army.
Also a special war tax would be imposed on everyone, this would ensure only a truly popular war could be fought for any length of time. No more Iraqs or Afghanistans or Serbias or Somalias or Vietnams! Unless people don’t mind the tax, and volunteering to fight!
Section XI has one of the most important clauses, and that is;‘No tax shall be laid on incomes, capital gains, inheritances, property or gifts of an individual or family’ This ensures that no government can pile tax upon tax, ones income profits, inheritance, property and gifts belong to one, not the government, and with this, they shall be powerless to take your money. I specifically make this about individuals and families, so that corporations, can still be taxed.
The government is also prohibited from creating a national debt, this is one of the central powers that modern states have, and it is one mine, shall not have.
I’m not a fan of copyright or patent laws, it seems the super rich use this to squeeze more money out of the poor for no reason other than they had something developed in their labs fifty years ago. I don’t really think that is right! Also, I hate Hollywood, anything that hits their pockets has got to be good!
And so onto Article V, instead of a president, I have a council of nine, kinda like the Venetian one, but without the Doge! The office of president, along with the Supreme Court seem to me, to be the greatest weaknesses in the current American system, between them they dominate that country, which they should not do. My system would lessen the possibilities of a Lincoln or a Roosevelt or a Tony Blair or an Obama, with more than one leader, it diffuses power and could contain a danger like those above. Although at least six of the nine Consuls would have to agree on everything, they could pardon or honour anyone they wish.
Another important one, is the Supreme Court, the Judges have terms, so can’t be as almighty as the American version!
And another office I would introduce is the Tribune of the people, a council of five tribunes, elected by lot, so that possibly anyone could serve in this position for a ten-year term, I don’t prohibit further terms, because the likelihood of being chosen twice by lot is highly unlikely! They would have power to appeal to the Assembly and the Consulate, they could investigate government, they could make a fuss and embarrass people, they could bring issues to trial and make recommendations for legislation, not all-powerful, but a good speed bump for those greedy for power.
In describing the Cantons and their powers, it states unequivocally that each can leave the Federation at any time and for any reason, with this and the fact that the army is the militias of the cantons, one would hope that no American civil war situation could arise. Each canton could have its own sort of government, monarchial, direct democracy, representative etc…And most importantly, each Canton may restrict immigration into their cantons, no automatic right of abode. This could be a great firewall against any future mass migrations, as only some cantons, one would hope, are stupid enough to allow immigrants into their cantons, most others could insulate themselves from this, with this power.
Overall, there is little democracy in this, which I think is only good, the Tribune is there by lottery to stand up for peoples rights and against power, the courts are elected by the Assembly, but only for one term, the Senators are appointed, but only with the concurrence of the other Senators, the delegates are elected, but they are representative only of a state or canton, not a constituency, but they are influential in who they elect, the Consuls and the Judges as well as confirming the appointments made by the Consuls.
It seems a well-balanced constitution, but if there is anything you think needs alteration or revision, leave a comment!