Constitutional Convention advocates recommend a fundamental transformation of the U.S. Supreme Court by modeling it after the European International Court on Human Rights (ECHR).
Convention of the States National Director, Michael Farris recommends, “If the Supreme Court loves their national law, we’ll fix them this way.” Farris continues that we turn the Court into a 50-judge panel serving 8-year terms. This models the ECHR that appoints 46 judges; one for each member nations. Farris says that the Supreme Court reviews things on paper, because the “important stuff is done on paper anyway.” He continues, “If you don’t like their decision, you don’t like who they are, you get a new one.”
The ECHR can change national law through influencing change through “soft law”. According to University of Law, if national law conflicts with international law, the ECHR provides the ability for lawyers to pressure the national legislators to change their laws, aligning them with international law.
While we may not all agree with all the decisions of our highest Court, to fundamentally transform our U.S. Supreme Court into a system incapable of holding a sustained view and more difficult to overcome political pressure is certainly no improvement.
In other words, the rulings placed on the U.S. Supreme Court will change our laws to reflect international law…not constrain politicians and lawyers to the Constitution. The Supreme Court will become a token court, even more subjective to political pressures. Under the ECHR model, individuals, corporations, local, state and federal government brought before the court may in fact be even less constitutional.
Constructing a Supreme Court as such creates a roving system, making the U.S. Supreme Court extremely political. The courts authority will be wrapped in international bureaucracy and political framework and departs even farther from protecting individual rights and interpretation of the Constitution. This dilutes the balance of power, politicizes the U.S. Supreme Court and injects an international bureaucracy into our court system.
Exactly what the founders attempted to avoid.
Here are two questions that should be asked.
Why promote the European Court of Human Rights as the Supreme Court model for our justice system?
How does a roving Supreme Court justice system fix the problem of an overreaching government?
“In questions of power, then, let no more be heard of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution.” – Thomas Jefferson
Proponents of an Article V Convention wish to use the U.S. Constitution to control the federal government…to put limitations on the federal government. Most Constitutions throughout the world bind its citizens with unnecessary responsibilities to…the state. Governments use their Constitutions as tools in suppressing rather than laws to harmonize. These societies eventually implode from the bureaucratic layers, demands upon its people and misallocated resources…to name a few links in the chain. America did not become great because of a collective vision; we became great due to the sum of its parts.
During their most tyrannical 20th Century dictators, the governments of Communist Russia, Red China and North Korea were established under a Constitution. To enforce the laws and rules, soviets and communes are used. Rule of law is instituted to control the masses rather than harmonize societal problems. America’s once passive government protecting individual rights became active in a cold, collectivization of “the People”. Discipline is an adherence and enforcement of laws where free thought, private property and individualism are shunned.
Collective societies sacrifice the individual for the greater good providing temporary benefits to the mob. The destruction of the mob mentality is obvious with the evolution of Marxism into communism, then fascism. Karl Marx made famous the saying “From each according to his ability, to each according to his need.” A similar principle was adopted by the Bolshevik Party, led by Vladimir Lenin who studied Marx and established the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics in 1922. Eventually, the 1936 Constitution of the USSR, Article 12 adopted “work is a duty and a matter of honor for every able-bodied citizen, in accordance with the principle: ‘He who does not work, neither shall he eat.” Lenin, Stalin and Khrushchev ruled under a Communist Constitution even through its dissolve in 1991.
North and South Korea demonstrates how the burdens of a Constitution can be placed upon its people. The freedom of South Korea is not the example as the oppression of the people of North Korea’s. Article 86 of North Korea’s Constitution states “National defense is the supreme duty and honor of citizens”. North Korea’s Constitution goes on to identify supreme as steady improvement of the material and cultural standards of the people, and Comrade Sung’s supreme task was reunification. As priority is placed upon a failed North Korea’s nuclear program, the hindrance of collectivization of North Korea has borders intended to keep the North Koreans in and mass famines.
In 1948, Red China has a revolution and they instituted their first Constitution in 1954. Due to the collectivization of society known as “The Great Leap Forward”, it produced one of the worst famines known to man. Is it a coincidence that when societies collectivize, they implode from ill-informed decisions and when they do “the People” are blamed.
In “The People’s Republic of York County”, county officials have abandoned a representative government for planned land use and five year plans. Most collective Constitutions require soviets or communes to enforce laws and rules from “supreme” entities. Representatives are relabeled as leaders and they have a voice when decisions are made. They’ve abandoned “Rule of Law” and the Fifth Amendment by dictating property use in taking private property without just compensation. As citizens use their First Amendment right in redressing this grievance, the collectivization of York County’s land use plans, not individual property owners, determine how property is to be used. While 37 percent of York County is federally owned land, county officials plan to use “conservation easements, clustering and other techniques to preserve open space” and the burdens and funding of such government are placed upon the people of York County. The goals and mechanisms are used to control food production, energy, manufacturing, development and other uses of property.
America is not void of leaders advocating for the collectivization of society. Former President Franklin D. Roosevelt proposed a Second Bill of Rights where government provides adequate economic means such as medical care, education and a living wage. University of Virginia Professor, Larry Sabato recently states that “…the greatest responsibility of citizenship is service. …and, within the new Constitution, there should be a new Article posing a Bill of Responsibility.” Even conservative talk show host Mark Levin advocates government be financially responsible for housing values to “a financial loss to the property owner exceeding $10,000, the government shall compensate fully and property owner for such losses.” Many local governments have implemented home rental inspection programs for blighted areas. With the state as the dictator of jobs, education, medical care, homes and property, citizens are accountable to a government with a Bill of Responsibility or upkeep of your house with periodic home inspections, when do the citizens pursue their own interests without the approval of government…whether local, state or local.
Our nation has prospered because individual rights are protected and people are free to pursue their self-understanding…and they are not burdened with the mischief of the chains of a Constitution. Our nation became exceptional because the people were able to use their property in pursuing these and fellow American’s interests and needs…and not because of mandates of third parties.
When government and fellow Americans attempt to plan, control and monitor through collectivizing society, this becomes extremely expensive, time consuming and frustrating for everyone.
Frustrating for government officials attempting to provide something they cannot and frustrating for “we, the people” for being restricted from doing something we can.
Even though Alabama has applied to Congress to call a Convention, people are using this video to justify a “Convention of the States”. A Convention of the States does not exist within Article V of the U.S. Constitution and this video is riddled with misconceptions:
0:39 – Article V does not give “state legislators the authority to call a convention, or bypasses federal legislators to amend the Constitution.” State legislators have no such authority to call a convention.
1:14 – This adds additional language to the Amendment distorting its meaning. The video states “call a convention of the States upon retrieval of applications from 2/3 of the STATE LEGISLATORS.” Congress calls a “Convention to propose Amendments.” Article V gives no such authority to the states. Just as the video claims to bypass the federal government, state legislators can be bypassed by state ratifying conventions.
1:24 – The Delegates are not “chosen by the legislatures of the states attend the convention”. State legislatures do no such thing. Once the required applications are received, Congress calls a convention of the people, not the states.
1:36 – Amendments may not be proposed at the convention, we do not know the rules of the convention, so this is another misconception.
2:14 – Convention delegates are bound to their state legislatures. Where does this rule come from? What if Virginia loses their delegate, that just means Virginia is not represented at the convention.
2:46 – The states do not get authority over the national government. A convention is “by the people.” not the states.
3:01 – Abraham Lincoln’s quote “…the convention mode seems preferable, in that it allows amendments to originate with the people themselves.” …the People themselves.
The freedoms we enjoy are from 226 years of trial and error of a culture established under our current U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Don’t press the reset button. We fought in a Civil War because of the deficiencies of our Constitution. Our constitutional republic established a government that protects the individual to develop and innovate outside the mob.
Proponents of a Convention of the States are looking for a quick fix using state politics to fix national politics…while state and local government’s are just as guilty of infringing on the people’s rights as the federal government.
This video has many misconceptions. A Convention doesn’t need to “Runaway”, just having a convention is dangerous.
Our Constitution originated with slavery at the state level. …and we fought a war over it. The Industrial Revolution brought mining towns. Let’s learn from U.S. History and work together, rather than establish a dictatorship.
Many people are jumping on the Constitutional Convention bandwagon. I wanted to address a couple of issues with Michael Farris’ latest article about the Runaway Convention Myth.
In his article titled “Can We Trust the Constitution? Answering the Runaway Convention Myth”, he states that opponents to a Constitutional Convention claim two arguments, they are 1) “the delegates were instructed to merely amend the Articles of Confederation, but they wrote a whole new document and 2) The ratification process was improperly changed from 13 state legislatures to 9 state ratification conventions.
First, let’s straighten something out, Michael Farris should know better than the U.S. Constitution is the “supreme Law of the Land”…not the Supreme Law of the Land. The Declaration of the Independence references the “Supreme Judge of the world…” and our U.S. Constitution refers to the Supreme Court as the “supreme Court”. Our founders understood the limits of a manmade Constitution and the existence of a “higher law”.
Being the founder of a religious college, hopefully there’s no further explanation needed but it does explain why he’d support a Convention of the States in controlling the federal government. The understanding that there is a higher law is the reason there’s opposition to a Constitutional Convention.
You cannot control the actions or morals of individuals through manmade law.
According to the article, the delegates for both the Constitutional Convention and State ratifications conventions were selected by popular vote…which meant that state legislatures had no say in calling, conducting or ratifying our current Constitution. The claims were that they were instructed but were they instructed? That we are merely saying is that the delegates went to the convention and created a whole new document. Not sure if George Washington, Alexander Hamilton or Benjamin Franklin, necessarily needed direction in how to conduct the convention, they were elected by popular vote.
Whereas the Articles of Confederation may not have given the Continental Congress authority to “call” a convention, the U.S. Constitution does.
The fact that the number of states to ratify the Constitution was changed from 13 to 9 is the point.
We trust the Constitution; we don’t trust the current political process to fix a document that has endured centuries.
As Michael Farris is in good company with Ruth Bader Ginsburg as she wishes to change the Constitution also.
Does private property exist? If we own property, may we alter it as we see fit? Recently, while discussing property rights, a whole new argument arose…Communism.
Are individuals able to exercise private property rights or does government control property? The first time I encountered this debate was with a libertarian’s husband who felt because we pay property taxes, we don’t own property. The next time, I believe a liberal, was concerned about what his neighbor’s did, playing loud music, water rights and property values. The last argument claimed that the state owns property and we only pay “rent” in the form of taxes.
The argument transitioned to we do not have alodial title. Perplexed by the angle of the argument, I went home and researched “Alodial titles”. I realized that he was not advocating for property rights but for government control of property. In other words, you do not have control and ownership of your own property. The ability to make decisions based off your own decisions of property in land and servicing one another within business also.
Paying taxes is different than a mortgage, as the bank owns your property, you may not be able to tear down your house because the bank actually owns the property. While paying property taxes, you’re paying local government for the common good such as roads, schools, police, etc. This is based on your property value. While apartment complexes and communities pay taxes, some communities enter into a home owners association which is different than your local government. Your local government is not a home owners association.
Our constitutional republic predates Marxism, communism and fascist theories and our founder’s understood the importance of private property. Communism is defined as, “advocating class war and leading to a society in which all property is publicly owned and each person works and is paid according to their abilities and needs.” As government does identify property lines and other similar functions, they are making law concerning property rights so advocates for communism use this as a springboard into control of property. This is a far cry from control over your property.
Private property and capitalism are a cornerstone of our nation for over 225 years, this is a right protected by the Fifth Amendment. It reads, “…nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.”
…the right to life issue is a whole new discussion.
For private property to be taken, it must exist. Now, there are some who claim that the Bill of Rights only applies to the federal government but communism is communism. Whether it’s a local, state or federal level, property is still taken. Taxing authority is different than owning property; taxes go to paying for common interests.
Private property rights are the most important of our freedoms. People cannot exercise their rights and freedoms without private property…or if they do, it will be with the permission of the property owners.
The ability to redress grievances and exercise the Five Freedoms, freedom of assembly, speech, press, religion or petition cannot be exercised without private property. When a person posts on Facebook, they are using someone else’s property to exercise their freedom of press. When you speak at a city council or public grounds, you are speaking on government property and should abide by their rules.
If government owns your property, then they may conduct “Illegal searches and seizures.” Do you have the right to bear arms if you’re renting your property? When someone invites you to use their property, it is their option to allow you to represent their property as they see fit.
When government owns all property, this economic system is communism. Those with a silver tongue will always advocate for communism over capitalism because their commodity is politics and the art of persuasion. The foundation of our economic system is capitalism. The most vulnerable within our society is…the individual! …and protecting private property rights should be sacrosanct! Without private property and respect for it …then no one is free.
…besides, the “supreme Law of the Land” protects it.
“I would have saved 1,000 slaves if they knew they were slaves.” – Harriet Tubman
Using the Constitution: Article V Convention Counter Argument
Proponents of an Article V Convention are in panic mode. They demand that something be done immediately to resolve our current crisis and it must be done soon.
So, they have rebranded the original Constitutional Convention of 2011, to an Article V Convention and now, its called a “Convention of the States”. This movement has created a George Orwell’s “1984” feel to it as the government is at constant war, the people are fed propaganda but the opposition is our own…federal government.
The theme is…let’s use the Constitution to reign in government but is it the government who has changed. Or society whose morals have been shaped by atheist universities. …but I digress. Constitutions have been used to restrain “the People” such as the Socialist Constitution of North Korea, Red China or Russia. Could we end up with a Socialist Constitution, about as much as we could get something fixed through a bunch of lawyers and politicians restructuring our founding document.
As proponents for a Convention of the States cheer for state government to come in and save the day. Let’s analysis Article V. It’s only 143 words.
“The Congress, whenever two thirds of both houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose amendments to this Constitution, or, on the applications of two thirds of the several states, shall call a convention for proposing amendments, which, in either case, shall be valid to all intents and purposes, as part of this Constitution, when ratified by the legislatures of three fourths of the several states, or by conventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other mode of ratification may be proposed by the Congress; provided that no amendment which may be made prior to the year one thousand eight hundred and eight shall in any manner affect the first and fourth clauses in the ninth section of the first article; and that no state, without its consent, shall be deprived of its equal suffrage in the Senate.”
THE U.S. CONSTITUTION EMPOWERS THE STATES to conduct a “Convention of the States”. Article V empowers the states with two responsibilities; States may apply for a convention and ratify any proposed amendments. Proponents say that the founders intended for the convention process to bypass Congress or empower the states but it does not such thing for a so called “Convention of the State”.
States Control the Convention. Some states are proposing laws in hopes of controlling their delegates. Once the states submit their applications, they cannot control the convention process. Proponents are trying to convince State legislatures they can control delegates with jail sentences or removal from the convention but again, they are just forfeiting their voice in this convention. If the convention moves from the appointed agenda, the only thing an entity outside the convention can do is remove it’s voice from the convention.
Congress calls the Convention . “The Congress…shall propose amendments” or “shall call a convention for proposing amendments” Some believe that States can call a Convention upon application of two-thirds of the states but that is not the case. The true case is that upon two-thirds of both “houses” or upon application of two-thirds of the several states, “The Congress” proposes amendments or calls a convention.
“Shall be part of this Constitution” Our Constitution was devised from the Articles of Confederation. When the founder’s entered the Convention, States needed to unanimously ratify proposals. We don’t need the argument of delegates changing their mandate, as the New York delegates did. Once they were finished, three-fourths of the States were needed to ratify a new Constitution…the other three states either ratified or were without a country. What’s to say that a new ratification process couldn’t be proposed in a new Constitution? They could lower ratification to 26 states, leaving the remaining 24 without a nation, then the 24 would be with a massive debt and the old government.
Hopefully, you’ll see this whole dilemma has changed about having reign in the federal government by using the Constitution, the “supreme Law of the Land” as the authoritative foundation. While our nation is in internal conflict, it is not the time to open up the Constitution for debate. …or attempt to use a document to control behavior. We might wanna be careful because that behavior they claim they want to change…may be “the Peoples”
No need to go far to see what’s wrong with our nation, all you need to do is watch how Article V of the Constitution is being implemented. All you need is to read Article V of the U.S. Constitution then refer to those calling for an Article V Convention, Convention of the States and a Constitutional Convention.
We do not need a U.S. Constitutional Convention. There is a push for States to apply for a U.S. Constitutional Convention to either propose Constitutional Amendments or restructure our government. I wish to identify the dangers of such a Convention using only Article V of the Constitution. Hopefully, this will convince you to oppose any type of U.S. Constitutional Convention.
The United States Constitution has endured 226 years of trials and tribulations as the supreme Law of the Land. Our ancestors fought in civil wars, two World Wars, the Great Depression, many recessions, along with many other atrocities to bring our country to where it is today. Even though they endured the ages, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights are the foundation of our law system and have propelled all of our lives to new heights. It has produced the highest number of Nobel winners, medical, business and technological advances known to man but there are some who are calling for a convention.
A U.S. Constitutional Convention is being called different names. American Legislative Executive Council (also known as ALEC) advocates for an “Article V Convention” while Mark Levin encourages a “Convention of the States”. No matter what you call it, the basis of these conventions is Article V of the U.S. Constitution.
States are empowered with two powers according to the U.S. Constitution, Article V. They shall apply for a convention and ratify proposed amendments. States cannot control it or call a convention. It’s questionable whether delegates can be controlled as many state legislatures are proposing and by no means can the agenda be controlled. Once the two-thirds of the state apply, Congress calls the convention but no one knows where it will go from there.
Constitutional Amendments proposed for this convention run the gamete. Amendments include a balance budget amendment, term limits, Supreme Court, eminent domain and even “Citizens United.” Whether your issue is with the budget, property rights or corporatism, there’s bound to be an amendment appealing to gain your support in your state applying for a U.S. Constitutional convention.
Hopefully, you, as do I, oppose a U.S. Constitutional Convention but if you are not convinced, attached is further analysis. Professor Tribe, a Harvard Law School professor, explains the justification of the dangers of a Convention.
As the Articles of Confederation was written and established by the States, the unique perspective of our founders were that they gave us a U.S. Constitution written by “We, the People” and ratified by the States. This placed, We, the people over State and federal government. …and gave us certain rights even our local government is infringing on. Our Constitution distinguishes between the individual “the People”, the states and the federal government.
As our nation has drifted away from promoting a society centered around the individual, whereas he’s able to address the problems important to him. We have drifted into a collective society, one of harmonizing and deconflicting to an aggressive and controlling society. Where the issue of the day is what government is addressing and injecting itself.
Government officials at all local, state and federal levels take an oath to the Constitution, the Supreme Law of the Land. But to some politicians, this belief is the progressive, controlling role where problems are solved with the blunt instrument of government. Other politicians believe that government’s role is a passive role to where bureaucracies intervene to harmonize conflicts.
Whether we’re talking about an intervening United Nations, federal, state and local government.
Below are some individual rights and freedoms we enjoy under our current U.S. Constitution.
1. Free Exercise of RELIGION – 1st Amd
2. Freedom of SPEECH – 1st Amd
3. Freedom of PRESS – 1st Amd
4. Right to PETITION – 1st Amd
5. Right to peaceably ASSEMBLE– 1st Amd
6. Right to keep and bear ARMS – 2nd Amd
7. Freedom from QUARTERING TROOPS – 3rd Amd
8. Right to be SECURE IN your PERSONS, HOUSES, PAPERS and EFFECTS – 4th Amd
9. Freedom from UNREASONABLE SEARCHES AND SEIZURES – 4th Amd
10. Freedom of WARRANTS being issued upon PROBABLE CAUSE – 4th Amd
11. Rights that WARRANTS SUPPORTED BY Oath and affirmation – 4th Amd
12. Rights of WARRANTS must be SPECIFIC, describing place to be searched and persons or things to be seized – 4th Amd
13. Freedom from being HELD to answer FOR A CRIME UNLESS on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury – 5th Amd
14. Freedom from DOUBLE JEOPARDY – 5th Amd
15. Freedom from SELF-INCRIMINATION – 5th Amd
16. Right to DUE PROCESS – 5th Amd
17. Right of PRIVATE PROPERTY taken for public use, without just compensation – 5th Amd
18. Right to SPEEDY TRIAL – 6th Amd
19. Right to PUBLIC TRIAL – 6th Amd
20. Right to an IMPARTIAL JURY in State/district where crime was committed- 6th Amd
21. Right to be informed of NATURE and CAUSE OF ACCUSATION – 6th Amd
22. Right to FACE ACCUSERS – 6th Amd
24. Right to COMPULSORY PROCESS for obtaining witnesses in his favor – 6th Amd
25. Right to the assistance of COUNSEL FOR HIS DEFENCE – 6th Amd
26. Right to a CIVIL TRIAL BY JURY – 7th Amd
27. Freedom from EXCESSIVE BAILS or FINES – 8th Amd
28. Freedom from CRUEL AND UNUSUAL PUNISHMENT – 8th Amd
29. Freedom from others using their CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS TO DENY OR DISPARAGE OTHERS – 9th Amd
30. Abolition of SLAVERY – 13th Amd
31. Constitutional Rights are protected to anyone born in the US…CITIZENSHIP – 14th Amd
32. Freedom from BLACK SUFFRAGE – 15th Amd
33. RIGHTS TO VOTE, afforded to Women (19th Amd), over 18 (26th Amd)
Reason Not to Have a Constitutional Convention # 2
[W]e have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion.
Government cannot control individual passion. We, as a nation, in pursuing a more perfect union does not mean confining one another with the shackles of government…no matter what level of government.
All laws originate from the U.S. Constitution. Even though delegates were chosen by the states, the Constitution was drafted by “the People.” This fundamental document distinguishes between the people, the state and the federal government. Individual rights and morality are needed for our Constitution. The Tenth Amendment provides a distinction between the State and the people.
“…are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”
The Second Amendment provides a clear distinction as to individual’s right to bear Arms shall not be infringed. Infringement on individual rights seems to be a local government issue as it does a United Nations one, governments at all levels have infringed on these fundamental rights…no matter what the Supreme Court rules.
A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
The Constitution established a bicameral Congress whereas Senators were appointed by States and the people elected House Representatives. That was until 1913 when the States gave up these rights while voting twice to give up these rights…that was in addition to nearly calling a convention to give up their right to appoint Senators.
The Fourth Amendment is the most infringed by government at all levels.
“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated…”
Our Constitution protects individual rights; this is why John Adams stated that our Constitution was for a moral and religious. Even your neighbor cannot search your property without permission, he cannot muffle your free speech or infringe on your property. To remain a free society, these individual rights must be retained by “the People”.
The moment the idea is admitted into society, that property is not as sacred as the laws of God, and that there is not a force of law and public justice to protect it, anarchy and tyranny commence.
America can only fundamentally be changed if our Constitution is changed and our individual rights are forfeited. Americans have different ethnics, cultural and fundamental backgrounds that provide our communities with different philosophical views. Individual rights are what made America Exceptional.
Reason # 1 Not to Have a Constitutional Convention
Great Britain demonstrated how a nation should declare war…have representatives debate, vote. After British Parliament debated, and then they voted not to intervene in Syria’s Civil War. But Wait! That’s how our founders established our country within the Constitution, for Congress to declare war and the Commander-in-Chief to execute it.
The Constitution is vague, but not in declaring war. Our founders gave Congress the power to declare war, to raise and support the armed forces while the President is Commander-in-chief…a separation of powers. Apparently, the War Powers Act has muddled the waters of declaring war. The Act provides means by which the President can act without Congress declaration or authorization. If a national emergency is created, the President needs to notify Congress within 48 hours and execute whatever actions within 60 days.
Former Congressmen such as John Kerry and Leon Panetta believe that the President has the authority to declare war, claiming a declaration is not needed. In addition, former Representative and Defense Secretary, Leon Panetta testified that an international coalition must be built and he’d advise Congress on what was decided. Former Senator and Secretary of State, John Kerry believes the President’s has an obligation to act.
Congress has declared war five times. The last being 1942 for World War II and has never declared war after the inception of the United Nations. Over the past two years, the United Nations has passed two resolutions involving conflicts with Mali and Libya while Russia continues to veto Syria…
Americans should understand why we’re going to war, so debates on the floor should be conducted between Representatives. There should be no secret in justifying war, once Congress has declared war than allow the Executive Branch to conduct it. If chemical weapons were used, then let the debate begin. 79 percent of Americans believe that the President should seek Congressional approval and it appears he is. It is clear that we should return to a Constitutional Republic rather than pursue this haphazard constant intervention seeking to be the World’s police. According to Article I, Section 8, Congress has the power to declare war and Article 2 assigns the President as Commander-in-Chief.
If our Representatives debate and vote to go to war, then Americans have an understanding of the reasons these Representatives supported. If they do not reflect the decisions of their constituents then their vote should be noted… If they have good reasons for war, then we’ll understand those reasons. We may not like them but our founders placed our military under the umbrella of a federal government…and for good reason. A country could not provide national defense with 50 different militaries. If Congress declares war, the Constitutional process is not broken.
(Richmond, VA) – “The IRS Exempt Organizations unit has violated the sacred constitutional rights of some 75 Tea Party and Patriot groups that had applied for tax-exempt status between 2009 and 2012,” said Mark Daugherty, Chairman, Virginia Tea Party Patriots Federation. “The Tea Party rejects the apology by Lois Lerner, Director, Exempt Organizations, for her department’s confirmed discrimination and illegal treatment against groups that have the words ‘Tea Party’ or ‘Patriots’ in their name,” declared Mr. Daugherty.
The Constitutional violations include.
1. First Amendment: The rights of free speech. Viewpoint discrimination.
2. Fourth Amendment: The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated.
3. Fourteenth Amendment: Equal protection of the law.
Mark Daugherty said, “This egregious behavior requires a full top-to-bottom investigation by the Inspector General of the operations and practices of the IRS Exempt Organizations unit. “Furthermore, The IRS agents, supervisors, and senior executives should be held accountable for their illegal actions.”
The Virginia Tea Party Patriots Federation notes the abusive and overtly political behavior by the IRS during the Clinton administration when critics of President Clinton were subjected to tax audits.* “This cycle of IRS abuse and illegal behavior must be stopped,” said Mark Daugherty.
The Virginia Tea Party Patriots Federation thanks the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ) for advocating on behalf of 27 tea party groups seeking tax-exempt status, including tea party groups in Virginia.
“Several Tea Party groups in northern Virginia were discouraged from seeking tax-exempt status due to the chilling effects of the enhanced investigations by the IRS,” said Mark Daugherty. “In addition, the Shenandoah Valley Tea Party Patriots spent 26 months working through the tortuous tax-exempt process, and spent 235 hours to compile a 10-pound report measuring seven inches thick, to comply with a second-round of IRS information requests.”
Ron Wilcox, lead organizer of the Northern Va Tea Party, said, “We were discouraged from applying for tax exempt status because we knew the IRS was targeting the tea party groups for ‘special examination’ and ‘enforcement’.”
“The tea party groups targeted should also be reimbursed for the extra time and expense forced upon them in attempting to comply with these illegal, threatening mandates handed down against them by the IRS,” states Mr. Daugherty.
The Virginia Tea Party Patriots Federation is a coalition of 46 independent Tea Party and patriot groups that stand for fiscal responsibility, constitutionally-limited government, and free market principles.
<< This article was updated on November 13, 2013 >>
Freedom of Thought or Consciousness is dangerous to a free society. However, political correctness is suppressing an individual’s free exercise of religion. This practice actually suppresses the First Amendment and promotes Article 18 of the Declaration of Human Rights. Freedom to Worship appears similar to Freedom of Religion but they are actually on opposing ends of the spectrum. For over 60 years, our nation and our legal system has slowly adopted this UN Human Right to Freedom of Worship over the free exercise of Religion.
The US Constitution protects an individual’s right to openly practice and express their religious beliefs. The First Amendment states,
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof, or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
Our federal government and media are at war with Christianity. As the Westboro Baptist Church, Jeremiah Wright, Terry Jones and pedophilia priests are poster children of Christianity, Christians have succumbed their religion freedom. The demonization has created a void in society and other deities’ are introduced as substitutes. Christianity’s moral foundation emphasizes individual responsibility to God as well as to society at large. Movie stars, politicians and activists are now providing this moral foundation to our society.
In his 1941 State of the Union address, President Franklin D. Roosevelt introduced freedom of worship with his “four human freedoms.”
After his death, Eleanor Roosevelt continued his legacy as she chaired the United Nation’s Declaration of Human Rights. FDR’s Four Freedoms became the foundation of the United Nations. During a dedication of Four Freedoms Park last October, Ban Ki-Moon (UN General Secretary) proclaimed these freedoms as the United Nation’s founding vision.
UN Declaration of Human Rights, Article 18 states:
“Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance.”
The potential for abuse that exists in the difference between Freedom of Religion and Freedom of Worship is best exemplified by the Healthcare mandate ragarding abortion and contraception. This mandate differentiates between the mechanical practice of religion and belief within that religion. They deemed the physical act of entering a church is worthy of first amendment protection., the belief system underlying that is protected.
When someone’s free speech is suppressed for fear of offending someone else, we have truly lost our Constitutional right. This Human Right (as opposed to our individual right) suppresses religious influences on thought and conscious. Article 18 of the Declaration of Human Rights actually exemplifies intolerance. When someone’s free speech is suppressed due to offending someone else, we have truly lost our Constitutional right.
Organizations promote freedom from religion and “Free thinkers”. Meanwhile, public schools and city councils are sued for their religiously affiliations, mostly for the practice of Christianity.
New religious affiliations have crept into our society such as atheism, agnosticism, Patheism, worship of Mother Earth and humanism. These religions must respect Judeo-Christian expression if they expect their own practice to be respected.
Religious alternatives are being promoted within our society. Environmental groups push religious views such as Pantheism or the worship of Gaia. In 1971, our nation introduced Earth Day. In 2009, the United Nations designated April 22 as International Mother Earth Day. We should all love our planet, respect it and celebrate it but it should not be worshipped as a religion.
The Supreme Court and others have boxed religion as defined as a separation of church and state. We have accepted atheism which is a religious choice just as Christianity, Islam and Hinduism. It is the religion of no religion which has been advanced by countless court decisions in violation of the first amendment. The Supreme Court declares school prayer and nativity scenes unconstitutional. Church leaders cannot defend the right of religious people to exercise their freedom in the public square. We are losing our Constitutional rights and becoming a secular, progressive autocracy under Human Rights.
Christianity receives much good that do not get publicity, none to the degree the abuses receive. The practice of religion has seen much abuse. The medieval harshness of Sharia Law is incompatable with many accepted norms within our free society. Under Afghan law, punishment of Proselytism, conversion from Islam to another religion, is punishable by death. This is Freedom to Worship. This is not a reason to reject religion. This is a reason to correct any shortcomings while maintaining moral primacy and societal decorum.
In the twentieth century. disastrous political/military campaigns are driven by progressive, humanist, atheists. Dictators such as Hitler, Lenin, Stalin, Pol Pot, and Mao were ruthless, fanatical atheists. They believed in the collective good was the ultimate goal. These agendas have killed millions of people. People should not be forced to conceal their faith when in the public arena. We must combat the state sponsored atheism being pushed upon society.
Should we force an environment of intolerance so free thinkers have an environment to exercise worship, or one that tolerates other practice of religions? If we become responsible for other’s thought and consciousness, this oppression will not stop at religion.
With the current media circus aimed at gun control, can you imagine if the founding document, our U.S. Constitution, was on trial? Instead of demanding our Constitutional Right, we’d have to justify why an individual has the right to possess a gun. Many mainstream state politicians and lobbying groups across the nation are applying for a second Constitutional Convention and…it looks like they may get it.
Americans exercise liberties no individual had experienced prior. In return, the innovations America’s contributed to mankind are unimaginable prior to introduction. This is because our founder’s ingeniously wrote the Constitution establishing a strong but limited government designed to protect our individual rights. Over the years, our government and the protection of our individual rights have eroded. Today, these rights and responsibilities are just as important and just as vulnerable. As these groups pursue an “Article V Convention”, are they looking to abolish our current government and replace it with another?
“That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.”
Declaration of Independence, 1776
Some organizations and academia want the name of a Constitutional Convention change to something else. ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Council) is an organization that advises and recruits state legislators across the nation. According to their manual for “Proposing Constitutional Amendments by a Convention of the States”,
“Other acceptable names for a convention for proposing amendments are amendments convention, convention of the states, and Article V convention. (…it is inaccurate and misleading to call a convention for proposing amendments a ‘constitutional convention”.)
To call an Article V Convention anything but a “Constitutional Convention” is misleading. Other than being defeated at war, there are ONLY two ways to amend or alter the Constitution. The first method is the Amendment process which has successfully amended the Constitution 17 times and the other is by Convention. Once Congress calls a Convention according to Article V, there is nothing that can alter its course.
“…there is no effective way to limit or muzzle the actions of a Constitutional Convention. The Convention could make its own rules and set its own agenda. Congress might try to limit the Convention to one amendment or to one issue, but there is no way to assure that the Convention would obey. After a Convention is convened it will be too late to stop the Convention if we don’t like its agenda.”
US Supreme Court Chief Justice Warren Burger
America’s problem is not an antiquated Constitution but a government that has deviated from it; this includes local, regional and state governments. We cannot fix our government through changing or adding new rules; we need to hold it accountable to the rules already set forth.
Once an Article V Convention begins, what will the Federalist Papers resemble? Our founders wrote Federalist Papers to convince the states in ratifying the Constitution, along with the Bill of Rights. With today’s media, it could easily be made a mockery on CSPAN, MSNBC, CNN or Fox with commentaries of Pierce Morgan, Chris Matthews or Bill O’Reilly moderating the coverage.
In today’s chaos, our Constitution is our only foundation, it preserves our liberties such as freedom of speech, religion, due process, private property or arms…just to name a few! Hopefully, you’ll be prepared to defend these freedoms when it comes for deliberation!
Our Constitution protects our rights as individuals. We, the citizens, are not positioned to defend our Constitutional individual freedoms in such a forum. We have been segregated into false labels so we could easily pick our opponents for trivial stuff.
Imagine our First Amendment’s Five Freedoms, freedom of religion, press, speech, assembly and petition did not exist. What if authorities arrested without charging, search and seized property the State deemed necessary? These fundamental Individual Rights are protected by a federal government established within our Constitution.
When it comes to our Second Amendment, the massacres of Aurora, Newtown and Ft Hood don’t hold a candle to the massacres done by dictators’ like Mao Zedong, Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin. Our founders understood an out-of-control government and attempted to limit it as much as possible. They also understood how special interest could infiltrate it and use it as their weapon.
“They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.”
Once the Constitutional Convention starts, our individual rights will be open for debate. It’s difficult to understand why someone would submit for a Constitutional Convention in these times unless they wish to get rid of our Individual Rights…rights protected by a limited government that may no longer exist. …Or they may wish for a fundamental transformation of America.
“Whatever gain might be hoped for from a new Constitutional Convention could not be worth the risk involved. A new Convention could plunge our Nation into constitutional confusion and confrontation at every turn, with no assurance that focus would be on the subject needing attention. I have discouraged the idea of a Constitutional Convention, and I am glad to see states rescinding their previous resolutions requesting a convention.”
Chief Justice Warren Burger
Hopefully, Americans have not taken our individual liberties for granted to allow bureaucrats, politicians and special interest to take them away. The only way to accomplish this is hard work, petitioning your Representatives and replacing those who do not protect our individual rights.
Great conservatives like Marco Rubio, Mike Lee and Rand Paul can only be topped with a Senate majority. If so, it won’t be with Senator DeMint as he moves to the Heritage Foundation. The true fight in engaging Washington and politics in general is from the outside.
…you cannot change Washington from the inside. You can only change it from the outside. That's how I got elected. That's how the biggest accomplishments like healthcare got done was because we mobilized the American people to speak out.
Universities indoctrinate thousands of liberals annually, these indoctrinated students are painfully brought back to reality through life experiences. Some never leave their theoretical world, only to validate their flawed concepts. As universities place these misguided in powerful positions, our society begins to deteriorate.
Media and Hollywood reinforce these false concepts with keenly worded polls and convenient news to push political agendas. Bob Costa's choose gun control over Jovan Belchers' fractured family? How convenient a Small Arms treaty is awaiting ratification rather than the destruction of unwedded parents, raising a child in a dysfunctional home. You have the perfect contributions of Hollywood when you throw in cinematography, a famous actor and a great storyline.
Community organizations and unions drive similar messages. Life's hard lessons are the fault of greedy bankers loaning money to the poor or business owners providing jobs rather than bad legislation. In 2010, union workers made up 11.4% of the workforce; now only 7%. Unions see private businesses fall apart because they bargain for more power, squeezing every last profit out until no business has anything to fall back on. Community organizations (also referred to as Non Governmental Organizations) such as the Sierra Club, PETA or ACORN advocate for the distressed. If negotiating or the problem was solved, community organizations and unions would no longer need to exist.
Universities, unions, community organizations and media use groupthink, authority and compartmentalization to whip mobs into frenzies so they maintain their political power. These outside agencies influence our political system through subversion and power. They use individual actions to justify their broad, collective advocacy or propaganda.
In questions of power, then, let no more be heard of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution.
Our Constitutional Republic was created to protect individual rights from the frenzied mobs. As they lobby the collective, the repercussion destroys the individual and any opposition. Change to Washington must come from the outside. Instead of solving problems on there own, these groups demand Washington and local governments intervene through legislation.
The true power struggle is no longer in Washington DC, we must realize the front lines are in our community. Our reality and way of life is threatened as long as universities, unions, community organizations and media maintain power through manipulation and coercion. This is why Jim DeMint made a fabulous move in moving his fight to the outside.
It is hardly too strong to say that the Constitution was made to guard the people against the dangers of good intentions…There are men, in all ages…who mean to govern well; but they mean to govern. They promise to be kind masters; but they mean to be masters…
As the fiscal cliff looms, it is prudent to discuss how we got here. As our crisis moves from housing to student loan and then into health care, it should be noted what, how and who got us into this situation.
“…because this financial crisis just wasn’t the result of decisions made in the executive suites on Wall Street, it was also the result decisions made across kitchen tables across America by folks who took on mortgages and credit cards and auto loans,”
During a 2010 speech at Wall Street, President Obama blamed Wall Street and Main Street for irresponsible financial practices but he neglected the true culprit of the housing crisis…the federal government. When third parties such as Washington politicians, bureaucrats and community organizations get involved, it perpetuated the housing disaster in what we have today.
So, how do you collapse the housing market? You start with the philosophy of “Overloading the system” with an approach known as “Top Down, Bottom Up and Inside Out. Van Jones explains this concept below. Politicians and bureaucrats wrote legislation that entice community organizations, citizens and lawyers to force banks in giving loans they should not have given. This concept begins with the passage of the Community Reinvestment Act, then relaxing HUD policies with unrealistic goals. The Clinton Administration and Congress put pressure on banks, this represents the “Top Down” portion. This placed the legal ability for banks to make risky “subprime” loans. The “Bottom Up” is community organizations, like ACORN and lawyers who push the written law through the court system. These community organizations put pressure or extorted banks through threats of lawsuits. With Fannie and Freddie’s loan goals increased, pressure from federal agencies and community groups demanding risky loans to be made, this is the “Top Down, Bottom Up” scenario. The “Inside Out” scenario is where people within the system begin to work with the community organizations or replaced with people who are friendly to organizations that caused the problems.
So, what caused the subprime lending crisis? Let’s start with the Community Reinvestment Act.
In 1977, the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) established the foundation for the housing crisis and “encouraged” financial institutions to provide loans to low- and moderate-income communities. It eliminated “redlining”, a practice where banks identify and eliminate lending to certain high-risk communities. But one of the most damaging aspects of the act was the creation of a rating system that evaluated banks on several factors, one being their subprime loan record. The CRA addressed concerns of the deteriorating conditions of cities like urban flight and declining neighborhoods, this was due to limited credit availability. After the CRA was enacted, the federal government continued to tweak previsions for the next 30 years to provide loans to risky borrowers, loosen restrictions so banks were able to give these loans and provided legal grounds for community organizations and lawyers to force these loans.
After the passage of the CRA, trends of outstanding consumer credit skyrocketed. (See chart below)
The Glass-Steagall Act of 1933 kept banks in check. It limited the affiliation between commercial banks and security firms, this also eliminated financial transactions being granted within the same credit, lending and investing institutions, also known as “too big to fail.” What this would do is tie loans to the banks physical assets. Back in 1933, this act gave additional oversight authority to the Federal Reserve. In addition, the FDIC would be able to guarantee loans up to a certain amount.
Ben Bernanke explained that the CRA encouraged many banks to make high-risk loans to low and middle-income communities at low interest rates. The Financial Institution Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act of 1989 (FIRREA) publicized these CRA reports public. This allowed community organizations and lawyers to “perform more-sophisticated, quantitative analyses of banks’ records.” If a bank’s ratings were not adequate, community organizations such as Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) sued banks for the lack of loans in low income communities.
In 1980, Jimmy Carter signed the HR 4986, “Depository Institutions Deregulation and Monetary Control Act” forcing banks to adhere to Federal Reserve rules. It allowed the merger of banks and raised deposit insurance from $40,000 to $100,000.
In 1992, the Housing and Community Development Act of 1992 “establish(ed) specified housing goals for each enterprise, including goals for purchase of mortgages on housing for low- and moderate-income families”. These two Government-Sponsored Enterprises (GSE), Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, encouraged “subprime” lending by authorizing a “flexible” criteria whereas high-risk borrowers could be qualified for home loans. These GSEs were intermediaries who loan to banks and not directly to homeowners. Banks were directed to accept welfare payments and unemployment benefits as “valid income sources” in qualifying for mortgages. If banks didn’t accept these documents, they could face lawsuits.
In 1994, Housing and Urban Development (HUD) instituted a “top down” policy where ten federal agencies adopted a policy, entitled “Policy Statement on Discrimination in Lending”. According to the news release “The following Federal Agencies—HUD, OFHEO, DOJ, OCC, OTS, the Board, FDIC, FHFB, FTC and the NCUA—sharing a concern that some prospective homebuyers and other borrowers may be experiencing discriminatory treatment in their efforts to obtain loans, formed an Interagency Task Force on Fair Lending to establish uniform policy against discriminatory lending.”
Community organizations increasingly used the public comment process to pretest bank applications on CRA grounds. When applications were highly contested, federal agencies held public hearings to allow public comment on the bank’s lending record. In addition, this policy “seek(s) to promote fair lending” and “seeks to prevent lending discrimination and redlining by requiring public disclosure of certain information about mortgage loan applications.” In essence, the federal government established a grading program to evaluate how these programs lent to the poor. Due to these changes in lending practices and activism, homeownership would soar as shown below.
According to the Chicago Daily Observer, Barrack Obama represented 186 African-Americans in a 1995 discrimination lawsuit against Citibank. These individuals were not approved loans but Citibank settled in 1997. Since then, roughly half of those represented have gone into bankruptcy or received foreclosure notices. Today, only 19 of the 186 still own their homes with a clean credit record. This demonstrates how community organizations can pressure banks into giving subprime loans.
In 1999, President Clinton and a Republican majority Congress repealed the Glass-Steagill Act. This allowed banks, lenders and investments firms to practice across different environments, reintroducing “Too Big Too Fail.” The bill passed the house (362-57) and Senate (90-8). At the same time, the Clinton Administration put pressure on Fannie Mae to expand mortgage loans among low and moderate income people. HUD increased Fannie/Freddie’s subprime lending goals to over 40 percent for low- and moderate-income families.
Bill Clinton in an interview describes how much CRA loans were given out during his time as President.
In 1999, Franklin D. Raines, Fannie Mae’s Chairman and CEO stated ”Fannie Mae has expanded home ownership for millions of families in the 1990’s by reducing down payment requirements.” “Fannie Mae is taking on significantly more risk, which may not pose any difficulties during flush economic times. But the government-subsidized corporation may run into trouble in an economic downturn, prompting a government rescue similar to that of the savings and loan industry in the 1980’s.”
According to Milkeninstitute, “The rate of foreclosures on subprime loans originated increased each year from 1999 to 2007 and accounted for approximately half of all foreclosures over the same period.” When the collapse occurred in the third quarter of 2007, subprime ARMs made up only 6.8 percent of US mortgages outstanding but accounted for 43 percent of the foreclosures that began in that quarter.
In November 2000, Fannie Mae announced HUD would increase the dedicated amounts to 50%. According to CSR Press Release, to expand the secondary market, Fannie Mae committed to purchase $2 billion through a suite of flexible mortgage options purchasing one-to-four unit homes. Fannie Mae injected a process where previous loans would be negotiated on an individual basis. Dan Mudd, from Fannie Mae stated “By teaming with lenders, Fannie Mae can not only help increase lending to minorities and other underserved market segments, but we also can assist depository institutions in meeting their own community investment goals and objectives. We look forward to working with our customers to create increased liquidity for Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) -eligible loans.”
In 2001, the US Department of Treasury warned, “Subprime borrowers typically have weakened credit histories that include payment delinquencies and possibly more severe problems such as charge-offs, judgments and bankruptcies. They may also display a reduced repayment capacity as measured by credit scores, debt-to-income ratios, or other criteria that may encompass borrowers with incomplete credit histories.”
Although most home loans were not subprime mortgages, their numbers rapidly grew in the early part of the 21st Century. Subprime loans accounted for 9 percent in 1996 and 20 percent in 2007, one-fifth of US home loan market. Throughout the 2000s, there were calls to reform Fannie and Freddie because they were “systemic risks”. In 2003, Barney Frank stated that Fannie and Freddie are “not in a crisis” and Republicans were crying wolf in calling Fannie and Freddie not financially sound. Democrats blocked Republican-sponsored legislation. From a servicing standpoint, these loans have a statistically higher rate of default and are more likely to experience repossessions and charge offs. Lenders use the higher interest rate and fees to offset these anticipated higher costs.
In April 2005, there was rumble of fixing the housing debacle but some lawmakers said that it undercut the ability of the CRA to “meet the needs of low and moderate-income persons and communities.” Senator Shelby introduced legislation to deal with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac that was causing a “systemic risk for our financial system.” The carrot was subprime loans that would be purchased and backed by federal GSEs Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Community Organizations felt this legislation would only weaken CRA. Even Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan warned of Fannie and Freddie’s debt. “We are placing the total financial system of the future at a substantial risk,” he said. Senator Charles Schumer (D) says, “I think Fannie and Freddie over the years have done an incredibly good job and are an intrinsic part of making America the best-housed people in the world.” No legislation would be passed to address the looming bubble.
On August 15, 2007, concerns about subprime mortgages caused a sharp drop in stocks across Nasdaq and Dow Jones. Record lows were observed in stock market prices across the the world. The US market recovered all those losses within 2 days. Concern in late 2007 increased as the August market recovery was lost, in spite of the Fed cutting interest rates by half a point (0.5%) on September 18 and by a quarter point (0.25%) on October 31. Stocks are testing their lows of August now.
On December 6, 2007, President Bush announced a plan to voluntarily and temporarily freeze the mortgages of a limited number of mortgage debtors holding ARMs by the Hope Now Alliance. He also asked Congress to: 1. Pass legislation to modernize the FHA. 2. Temporarily reform the tax code to help homeowners refinance during this time of housing market stress. 3. Pass funding to support mortgage counseling. 4. Pass legislation to reform GSEs like Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae.
In 2008, Troubled Asset Relief Program was enacted in response to the subprime mortgage crisis. Citizens do not have access to Fannie and Freddie’s records because they are considered a GSE, so the Freedom of Information Act does not apply. Currently, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac still have an open checkbook in buying loans.
So, what changed to cause the subprime mortgage crisis? Was it a conspiracy contrived by the Fannie, Freddie, bankers, lawyers or community organizations? NO! Legislation and courts were used to position third parties such as federal agencies, community organizations, GSEs and lawyers who determined the validity of banks’ lending practices based off a banks’ CRA rating rather than the practice for each individual. These players used the law to force banks to lend money to people who could not afford it. The housing collapse was caused by third party intervention intervening into the free market…not capitalism!
According to Maxine Waters (5:08), “Under the outstanding leadership of Frank Raines, everything in the 1992 Act has worked just fine. In fact, the GSEs has exceeded their housing goals. What we need to do today is focus on the regulator and this must be done in a manner so as not to impede their affordable housing mission. A mission that has seen innovation flourishes from desktop underwriting to 100 percent loans.”
According to a 2010 House Oversight Committee Report, top banks such as Countrywide, Bank of America, Chase, Washington Mutual and Wells Fargo established relationships with community organizations such as ACORN. The report also stated “ACORN used provisions in the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) of 1977 to challenge bank mergers and acquisitions. These challenges successfully forced banks to make lending agreements with ACORN Housing.” ACORN became a HUD approved housing counselor. According to the report, ACORN has “waged savage public campaigns and delivered subtle private threats to large banking institutions for its own financial gain, defeated former political allies…and formed powerful alliances with the SEIU, Rod Blagojevich and Barack Obama.”
With federal legislation pushed banks to make high risk loans and provided upward pressure from community organizations that ensure the subprime. The problem cannot be entirely blamed on the CRA but it laid the foundation. CRA reports enabled community organizations and lawyers to force banks into making subprime loans, and this extortion probably extended elsewhere…and to some degree partnerships. Fannie & Freddie was able to guarantee and provide cheap subprime money.
Ron Paul provided some insight that the very people who was instrumental in creating the legislation are there to fix it.
The next financial bubble will be “Student Loans” while the housing bubble’s intrinsic issues were not addressed.