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This seems a bit like the fox guarding the henhouse. The people named on the board of this new company seem to be the main ones running the government agencies they are supposed to monitor. Why do we need another government agency - why can't these leaders simply be more transparent? If you really want a board that will be trusted by the taxpayers I would suggest it be made up mainly of regular citizens.
Reading the list of names for the new transparency group it seems a bit like the fox guarding the hen house. Why do we have to have a new company? Why can't these leaders simply be more transparent? I would guess that each of the people named in the article as a board member already believes that they are being open with the public and I would be surprised if this new company will actually find any problems. If the real purpose of this new Partnership Gwinnett Public Funding Entity is to ensure transparency I suggest that the board be composed largely by regular citizens.
The consequences of passing this bill must be considered. First, at least one legislator from another state has written to Georgia stating that if GA issues driver's licenses to people who don't speak English they will refuse to honor the Georgia license of people driving in their state. Will that happen? I don't know, but it could. They fear that a non-English speaker will not be able to read and understand the rules of the road in their state. And remember that a license is used for ID also. There are all kinds of devilment one can get into with a valid driver's license. BJ is a nice guy, but remember that he is the rep who killed the 2011 effort that would require mandatory English for GA Driver's license exams.
Everybody has an opinion on last week's Supreme Court decision, but I was particularly disappointed by the editorial that appeared from my Congressman, Rob Woodall. His main take-away from the ruling was that elections have consequences, and he states that "It's not the Court's job to protect us from our own bad decisions."
But, Congressman, it is the Court's job to protect us from unconstitutional legislation.
The problem is that the Affordable Care Act was not passed as a tax. The administration still refuses to admit that it is a tax. Yet the Congressman (and the Chief Justice) decided to let that little fact slide.
Rather than quote the opinion written with the help of Ginsberg, Sotomayor and Kagan as Congressman Woodall has done, I believe that it is vital to heed the warnings in the dissent from Scalia, Thomas, and Alito:
“To say that the Individual Mandate merely imposes a tax is not to interpret the statute, but to rewrite it. Judicial tax-writing is particularly troubling... the Constitution requires tax increases to originate in the House of Representatives. That is to say, they must originate in the legislative body most accountable to the people, where legislators must weigh the need for the tax against the terrible price they might pay at their next election, which is never more than two years off.”
The conservative justices go on to say that “The values that should have determined our course today are caution, minimalism, and the understanding that the Federal Government is one of limited powers. But the Court’s ruling undermines those values at every turn.”
Congressman Woodall states that he was sent to Washington "... with a specific mandate to control the size and scope of the federal government so that individual Americans could once again enjoy the freedom and liberty guaranteed by the Constitution." But since the Republicans gained control of the House in the 2010 election the total debt has increased by $1.8 trillion and the federal government has grown almost exponentially. And I see no signs of it slowing.
Congress is quickly becoming obsolete, and unless we elect Representatives who will move immediately to actively defend the powers given to them by the Constitution (and loudly challenge the claims made by the other branches) our country is in grave peril. The conservative justices, at least, understand this, and gave us the following warning:
"The fragmentation of power produced by the structure of our Government is central to liberty, and when we destroy it, we place liberty at peril. Today’s decision should have vindicated, should have taught, this truth; instead, our judgment today has disregarded it.”
Candidate, US House of Representatives
Georgia 7th District
In his 4th of July editorial, Congressman Woodall writes “We live in a world our Founding Fathers could never have predicted (and frankly would not stand for), yet their guiding message remains true. The United States of America must now, as it did then, seize the freedom that our Constitution offers.”
While the Constitution is one of the greatest documents ever written (and if you are a Republican politician you need to bring it up as often as possible) the 4th of July is a celebration of the Declaration of Independence. Still, I get his point - the government set up by our Founding Fathers is in bad shape. But, if the Founders would not stand for it, why should we?
I was reading the Declaration again last night when I noticed something I had missed before. There is line before the list of “injuries and usurpations” that reads:
“... mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.”
Five years ago you knew the country was in trouble, but most of us were content to suffer and hope things would improve. We figured that if things got bad enough someone would step up and defend the founding principles. But what is bad enough? If you were told five years ago that soon the national debt would be greater than the our GDP, that the Justice Department would be refusing to enforce laws it didn’t like, that administrators would regulate certain businesses out of existence, that we would be forced into a government insurance program; if you were told all this you would have agreed that at that point something needed to be done. And you would have been right.
We are at that point now, and for some reason many of us continue to do the same things and hope for different results.
We need to be ever vigilant. Congress must tenaciously defend its powers under the constitution and shout loudly and constantly when one of the other branches oversteps its bounds. I don’t see this happening with career politicians. They have become focused on doing the ‘job’ of politics and not committed to actively defending the principles of the Founding Fathers.
We need a group of citizen legislators - people who live and work here in Georgia and are willing to go to Washington for a few years and then come home. Imagine waking up on November 7th and discovering that we have 300 Representatives who had never worked in Washington. What would all the lobbyists do? What would all the ‘power brokers’ do? They would not have Congressmen who owned them favors and would be suddenly shut out of the process. These new Representatives would pull out their Constitution, turn to Article I Section 8 and start reading their job description. They would make decisions based on what is best for the country and not their career.
Last login: Tuesday, November 26, 2013