Sunday, July 15, 2012

Constitutional Amendment Explanation

This is my attempt to explain what the goal of each point in my proposal is.
We start by looking at the beginning and finishing at the end.

The original text is non-italic while my comments are in italic.

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The United States may not enter into any treaty which violate any of the below principles in any way, shape, or form. If a treaty is ratified, and later discovered to violate this amendment in any way, shape, or form, that treaty shall immediately be considered null and void, and any decisions or laws created by the effects of that treaty shall also be considered null and void.
Ok, this is intended to prevent the US Senate from voting our constitution out of existence through time pressure (not enough time to read and understand the treaty). The null and void clauses are there to ensure that there are no further effects from an unconstitutional treaty and further ensures that we don't have to rely upon remembering to have reservations with any treaties.
  1. Put the citizens of the United States at a disadvantage when meeting with a citizen of another Foreign Power
    Example of a disadvantage: citizen of the Foreign Power can kill a US citizen without any repercussions. Or being able to mug the US citizen without having any repercussions.
  2. Allow another Foreign Power to pass judgement upon Citizens of the United States when the crime did not occur in that specific Foreign Power
    This is is to prevent a Foreign Power for passing judgement on a US citizen when they did not violate the laws of the Foreign Power while in the Foreign Power's juridiction. Example: Blogger posts legally taken pictures of problems in China (in the US) that show China's government in a poor light. China then passes judgement on the blogger for violating one of their laws.
    1. If the crime occurred in a Foreign Power besides the United States, then that specific Foreign Power, and that Foreign Power only, may apply for extradition.
      This prevents the Foreign Power from allowing another country to pass judgement, e.g., China gets a thief extradited to their country for crimes committed there, but then hands them over to Iran where they are prosecuted for showing fictional images of their Prophet.
      1. If the Law(s) that the Citizen broke are contradicted in the Constitution of the United States, then the Citizen may not be extradited
        Mainly applicable to free speech, e.g. a blogger can't be extradited for making fun of an Islamic Prophet. But it is applicable to other areas as well.
      2. The Citizen must also be tried first for that Crime in the United States, and if Convicted he/she may then be extradited to that Foreign Power for that Foreign Power to try the Citizen via their own Laws.
        In other words, there must be sufficient evidence for the citizen to be convicted in the US before they can be extradited.
        1. Any attempt to pressure any Court convened for this purpose will automatically make the Citizen innocent, regardless of whether or not they did, in fact, commit the Crime they have been accused of.
          This should prevent a Foreign Power from pressuring the court towards a predetermined goal. I have thought about adding a clause whereby the leaders of the offending Foreign Power at the time are killed. With prejudice.
    2. A Citizen of the United States may not be extradited due to Political Considerations
      Again, to prevent a government that wants to keep their citizens from getting information from censoring it in the US or censoring US Citizens.
  3. Create a situation whereby the United States is considered a lesser Foreign Power
    This is applicable when the US is participating in organizations such as the UN. The following examples from my original text illustrate some points.
    1. Examples of situations whereby the United States would be considered a lesser Foreign Power:
      1. The United States gives Tribute to another Foreign Power
        Specifically, when we have not been invaded and forced to surrender.
      2. Another Foreign Power controls who is elected into Office
        If a Foreign Power controls who is elected to office, then we have severe problems.
        1. All campaign contributions from other Foreign Powers shall be considered illegal, with the penalty being:
          1. Removal from politics forever for contributions of less than $1,000
            Gives incentive to know who is contributing
            1. Includes local politics, state politics, national politics, and lobbying of any form
          2. Exportation to that Foreign Power with loss of citizenship in the United States for contributions more than or equal to $1,000 and less than $50,000
            Again, gives incentive to know who is contributing along with having to live in the areas controlled by the Foreign Power.
          3. Death in any form for contributions of more than or equal to $50,000
            May have to be changed -- I can see some countries effectively killing people by donating "anonymously" and then publishing something. But the following provision kind of discourages that type of behaviour.
          4. In addition to:
            1. Destruction of the Foreign Powers ability to wage war and the destruction of the entire government
              Gives other Foreign Powers an incentive to not rig government arms (they won't be around to see their goals finished).
        2. Controlling media of any form which carries Political Campaign advertisements
          If you control what people read, see, or hear, then you control what they think. This cannot be allowed. This effectively means that only US companies can control media in the US.
          1. Includes:
            1. Internet
            2. Print
            3. Radio
            4. Television
            5. Any other form of media not yet invented
        3. Lawful/Unlawful weapons are determined by an outside Foreign Power
          This goes contrary to the second amendment, but just to make everything clear...
  4. When the United States is involved in another military organization, there shall be numbers of officers from the United States military equal or greater than that of the Foreign Power which has the most officers, and those officers shall be distributed throughout the ranks of the military organization, with at least one (1) officer from the United States at the top of the command chain.
    This is to ensure that other Foreign Powers cannot perform a coup using US forces under their command. As easily anyway.
  5. Any treaty which prevents the United States from pursuing any form of technology or preventing any of its citizens from pursuing that technology.
    I'm more worried about some avenues of technical research being closed off due to treaties, and I don't think its right for a government to prevent inventors/scientists/engineers from pursing certain forms of technology.
  6. Any treaty or law which uses falsified information to be passed by the United States Congress shall also be considered null and void and any obligations incurred by that treaty shall also be null and void.
    This goes back to the premise that any treaty that is rushed through the Senate should not be valid.
  7. The United States government may only use contracts with businesses that operate completely within the United States.
    This is to prevent the US government from doing business with Foreign Powers that have no intention of helping the US (such as Foreign Powers that have connections with global terrorism).


All new treaties must be ratified again every fifty (50) years, and any treaty which attempts to bypass this shall be considered null and void.
This is to ensure that all treaties remain relevant to the time. A treaty that attempts to cover events over fifty years from now is almost certain to be overreaching. It also makes it more applicable to the average person on the street, since it will make it such that useless treaties aren't re-ratified and useful treaties are re-ratified.
 
All new laws must be passed and signed into law again every fifty (50) years, and any law which attempts to bypass this shall be considered null and void unless it voids a previously passed law.
This is to make it easier for the standard (non-lawyer) citizen of the US to understand the laws of the United States. And to prevent bad laws from staying on the books forever.

All provisions of this amendment are not retroactive until and unless a method for travelling through time is discovered, in which case this amendment is immediately retroactive due to the assumption that a Foreign Power may have travelled through time to the period before this amendment was ratified in order to give themselves a more advantageous position over the United States.
This is a "just-in-case" clause. I personally don't think we will ever discover time-travel, but if we do then the US is covered. Retroactively, since I have no idea whether or not we will be able to tell whether or not a Foreign Power has tampered with certain agreements.


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This concludes my own analysis of my own proposed constitutional amendment.