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Forum Post: All of your problems will be solved with an Article V Convention - if your name is alec or koch

Posted 6 years ago on Dec. 9, 2012, 12:12 p.m. EST by bensdad (8977)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

The Existential Danger of an Article V Constitutional Convention ver 4.2


ARTICLE V: The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose Amendments to this Constitution, or, on the Application of the Legislatures 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 [state] Conventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other Mode of Ratification may be proposed by the Congress.

( 2/3 of House + 2/3 of Senate ) OR ( 2/3 of State Legislatures ) RATIFICATION OF CON CON PROPOSED & PASSED AMENDMENTS:
( ¾ of State Conventions ) OR ( ¾ of State Legislatures )

This language clearly states that only the Convention itself is authorized to determine the amendments that are to be proposed and what subjects will be addressed in those amendments. During the first 100 years of the Republic, applications for a convention did not try to tell the convention which amendments to propose, that is, they were, as stated in Article V, general applications for a convention.

Early applications, since 1788, properly left the determination of the content of the amendments to the convention. As time passed, the state legislatures lost sight of the clear language and intent of the U.S. Constitution. Later, they attempted to dictate to a convention what amendments it could propose. They did this by stating in their applications that they sought only a limited convention with authority to propose an amendment on a single subject. By issuing single-issue convention applications, legislatures sought to turn the convention into a rubber stamp which could do only what the applications stated. These unenforceable, unconstitutional limitations defy the intended purpose of the convention, which was to deliberate and decide what amendments to propose. Most recent calls for a con-con has been dressed up as a movement to require Congress to call a convention for the limited purpose of proposing an amendment requiring a balanced budget; to ban flag burning; to ban abortion…. Topics to which a convention is to be limited are designed to be appealing, but most jurists agree that Congress has no authority to dictate or limit what subjects to address in a convention.

The Article V ratification process was not sufficient to stop the runaway convention which met in 1787. The delegates were called to meet in Philadelphia for the sole and express purpose of revising the Articles of Confederation and reporting to Congress. Yet it did not take the delegates long to assume upon themselves more powers than what they had been given. In fact , they completely discarded the Articles of Confederation and wrote a completely new Constitution – defining the first “runaway convention” - discarding the original document and starting from scratch

The primary argument against calling for a constitutional convention is that once convened, such a convention would be free to propose whatever amendments it deemed beneficial. Which is to say that such a convention could become a “runaway convention” - exactly like the 1787 Convention that disregarded the guidelines under which it was convened. U.S. Supreme Court justices and the nation's leading legal scholars have stated that these single-subject limitations cannot be enforced; that if a convention is called, it will be free to propose any kind and number of amendments to the same effect, as if the limitations in the applications did not exist. In other words, although applications are effective, all such limitations must be ignored.

We even have a warning directly from James Madison, the “Father of the Constitution,” concerning the inadvisability of calling for a constitutional convention. When the states of New York and Virginia formally petitioned Congress in 1788 to call a constitutional convention to propose amendments to the Constitution, Madison wrote a letter in 1788 in which he emphatically warned against convening such a convention: “If a General Convention were to take place for the avowed and sole purpose of revising the Constitution, it would naturally consider itself as having a greater latitude than the Congress.... An election into it would be courted by the most violent partisans ... [and] would contain individuals of insidious views, who, under the mask of seeking alterations popular in some parts ... might have the dangerous opportunity of sapping the [nation’s] very foundations.”

Chief Justice Warren Burger, vigorously opposed convening a constitutional convention wrote on June 22, 1988: “I have also repeatedly given my opinion that 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. The 1787 Convention ignored the limit stated by the Confederation Congress "for the sole and express purpose”. 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 subjects needing attention.”

Associate Justice Arthur J Goldberg: "One of the most serious problems Article 5 poses is a runaway convention. There is no enforceable mechanism to prevent a convention from passing wholesale changes to our Constitution and Bill of Rights. Moreover, the absence of any mechanism to ensure representative selection of delegates could put a runaway convention in the hands of single-issue groups, whose self interest may be contrary to our nations well being"

Harvard Law Professor Lawrence Tribe stated that a Con-Con could not be limited to a single issue. "The stakes in this institution are much greater because you are putting the whole Constitution up for grabs. In 1787, there was at least agreement on the direction we should move ... today, we don't even agree what direction we should move. In 1787, America had a treasure of enlightened leaders such as Madison, Washington, Hamilton, and Jefferson. I don't know how you feel about the current cast of characters." Tribe also noted that a runaway convention could even change the rules of ratification, as the 1787 convention did, and make them ratifiable by national vote or some other method. (The Articles of Confederation required unanimous ratification by all 13 state legislatures, but delegates at the 1787 convention recognized this might not be accomplished, so they changed the ratification rules to three-fourths of the state legislatures or state ratifying conventions.)

Professor Rex E. Lee, former law school professor and president of Brigham Young University : "In short, if the question is whether a runaway convention is assured, the answer is 'No', but if the question is whether it is a real and serious possibility, the answer is 'Yes'. In our history we have only one experience with a Constitutional Convention, and while the end result was good, the 1787 convention itself was a definite runaway"

Professor Charles Allen Wright, a Professor of Law at the University of Austin. "I feel quite certain that even opening the door to the possibility of a constitutional convention would be a tragedy for the country."

Professor Gunther, Professor of Law at Stanford Law School wrote "The fear that a constitutional convention could become a 'runaway' convention and propose wholesale changes in our Constitution is by no means unfounded. Rather, this broad view of the authority of a convention reflects the consensus of most constitutional scholars who have commented on the issue. A convention, once called, would be in the same position as the only other convention of this kind that we have had in our history - the 1787 Philadelphia Convention - the first runaway convention."

However, if we use precedent of the 1787 Constitutional Convention, that includes one vote per state, just 14 states – a majority of a quorum [ 26 of 50 states ] is 14 states - representing less than 16,000,000 Americans could write & propose a completely new Constitution!

Some possible Amendments to come from an article V convention : No one can own a gun. Evolution cannot be taught. No corporate tax. No inheritance tax. The gold standard. Labor unions are illegal. The EPA & FDA & SEC are abolished. Islam is banned. Abortion is illegal. For the purposes of house representation, women are counted as 3/5. Birth control is illegal.

Some people believe that the ratification process is a check on the insanity. What if the Democrats, as they are so co-operative [ like they gave up on single-payer ], agree to cut defense spending by 50%, in exchange for eliminating the inheritance tax & capital gains tax – how many billionaires would turn this down?

American Legislative Exchange Council & the Koch brothers__
Everything, absolutely every fact and opinion stated above – warning against the inherent dangers
of a con-con - carries the weight of a flea compared to one single item:
ALEC & the Kochs are doing everything in their power to initiate a Constitutional Convention.



Read the Rules
[-] 1 points by bensdad (8977) 6 years ago

ADVOCATES TODAY: 80% of Americans + 100 congressmen + 1309 mayors


Virtually everything we want hinges on disarming our opponent –
by stopping the flood of bribes into our government.
by stopping the control – by their capitalism – of our democracy

Join the NYC OWS
Corporations are not People and Money is not Speech Working Group

This is the first REAL step to REAL change .

government OF the people BY the people FOR the people

Join the NYC OWS Corporations Are Not People and Money Is Not Speech Working Group
………….( even if you are not near NYC )

………………………….no signup or password
check out our comprehensive analysis of
the 17 existing proposed amendments
and our detailed historical timeline of corporate personhood
and our voting bloc plan


Are you ready
.....................FOR ACTION ?
Are you ready
.....................TO DO SOMETHING REAL ?
Are you ready
......................TO JOIN 80% OF YOUR FELLOW AMERICANS ?

We must not
DEMAND that we WANT THEM.to give to US
We must

Because of the Supreme Court's decision,
we cannot accomplish anything significant, without FIRST -

Overturning Citizens United !!!
Ending Corporate Personhood !!!

80% of Americans already agree on it
as stated in the ABC/Washington Post poll

In the the PFAW Poll -

85% of voters say that corporations have too much influence over the political system today.
77% think Congress should support an amendment to limit the amount corporations can spend on elections.
74% say that they would be more likely to vote for a candidate for Congress who pledged to support a Constitutional Amendment limiting corporate spending in elections.



Our primary goal should be to elect representatives who support a constitutional amendment to counter Supreme Court decision Citizens United (2010) , that enables unlimited amounts of anonymous money to flood into our political system.
We don’t have to explain or persuade people to accept our position – we only have to persuade them to ACT based on their own position. Pursuing this goal will prove to the world that we, at OWS, are a serious realistic Movement, with serious realistic goals. Achieving this goal will make virtually every other goal – jobs, taxes, infrastructure, Medicare – much easier to achieve –
by disarming our greatest enemy – GREED.


I feel that using the tactics of the NRA, the AARP, the TP, the anti-SOPA – who all represent a minority – who have successfully used their voting power and political pressure to achieve their minority goals - is a straight path for us to success that cannot fail to enable us to create and complete one task that the MAJORITY want.

Join the NYC OWS Corporations are not People and Money is not Speech Working Group



regular meetings Wednesdays 5:30-7:30PM @ 60 Wall St – The Attrium

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[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (33651) from Coon Rapids, MN 6 years ago

Yep - single controlled crisp clear & clean actions - such as - Move To Amend - Is The Best Way Forward For The People - At This Point In Time.

[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (33651) from Coon Rapids, MN 6 years ago

I think those guys have wet dreams about taking over such a process.

Article V Convention - if your name is alec or koch

[-] 1 points by rayolite (461) 6 years ago

Fear of the constitution serves the 1% more than anything, but they won't want you to realize that. They also won't want you to focus on this part of Article V.

"shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments, which, in either Case, shall be valid to all Intents and Purposes, as part of this Constitution,"

"the people are the rightful masters of the congress and the courts", (Lincoln 1859). The people become masters by their uses of free speech to unify.

It is absurd to think that an Article V convention could proceed with constitutional intent with free speech abridged as it is and has been for 60 years. Or since mass media took over informing Americans about the world.

The are 3 preparatory amendments that are needed in oder for the people to assert their mastery.

1)End the abridging of free speech

2)Campaign finance reform

3)Secure the vote

The poster of the OP has been asked numerous time to show their efforts to have free speech have it greatest meaning, or to share information which will protect life when it is understood. They have never responded. They continue to assert that we have free speech. They do not discuss the potential meanings which are VERY constitutional, and rightfully should be known and respected by all Americans.

They fearfully only pay attention to the fraudulent perceived threat of elite's pretending they want an Article V convention.

[-] 1 points by bensdad (8977) 6 years ago

The poster of the OP has been asked numerous time to show their efforts to have free speech have it greatest meaning, or to share information which will protect life when it is understood.
unintelligible BS

They have never responded.

They continue to assert that we have free speech.
lie - one way to differentiate ignorance from stupidity is a post with a lie that is so easily provable as a lie

They do not discuss the potential meanings which are VERY constitutional, and rightfully should be known and respected by all Americans.
unintelligible BS

They fearfully only pay attention to the fraudulent perceived threat of elite's pretending they want an Article V convention.
pretending??? - another easily provable lie
a lie based on ignorance of my activities - I pay attention to the real problem - money buying our government - and I DO something about it.

I have reported the anti-convention position via James Madison, Rex Lee, Lawrence Tribe, Justice Berger. You may know one of them was a President - I'll let you figure out of what.

Other than koch & alec, who is in favor of an Article V Convention?
You can answer here, but I'm not going to read it - I'm done wasting my time

[-] 1 points by rayolite (461) 6 years ago

You assert free speech is intact, but do not show where you have tested it. Still you don't.

"Other than koch & alec, who is in favor of an Article V Convention? You can answer here, but I'm not going to read it - I'm done wasting my time"

Are you trying to assert that constitutional intent is a social thing?

How about the effect of preparatory amendment? This you need to comment on and are still avoiding.

If this wasn't true,

Fear of the constitution serves the 1% more than anything

Why did the attorney general NOT act on this complaint regarding congress violating their oaths, the law and the constitution?


[-] 1 points by bensdad (8977) 6 years ago

Because they know what alec could do with an article V convention
Do you?

[-] 1 points by rayolite (461) 6 years ago

C'mon, relate the concept of "Preparatory Amendment" to Article V. How it would change it completely. Stop evading this prime constitutional matter.

[-] -1 points by freakyfriday (179) 6 years ago

And Soros and Clinton and Kennedy and Kerry and Pelosi abd Bloomberg and Moore and, and, oh hell, there sure are a lot of rich lefties. obama won 8 of 10 richest counties in the country.

[-] 1 points by bensdad (8977) 6 years ago

your logic is impeckable you learen it from a chicken

[-] -2 points by OTP (-203) from Tampa, FL 6 years ago

Another Occupy idea the Dem staffer doesnt like.


[-] 1 points by bensdad (8977) 6 years ago

It's not me that matters - its alec & koch who love it. Why do you want a convention - specifically
And what could the convention do?

http://www.alecexposed.org/wiki/ALEC_Exposed http://www.alecwatch.org/ http://www.thenation.com/article/161973/alec-exposed-koch-connection

what do YOU think of the kochs or alec ? why is t his an OWS idea ?

are you afraid to answer questions without attacks & name calling

[-] -1 points by OTP (-203) from Tampa, FL 6 years ago

There wasnt a question asked before.

Why is this an OWS idea? Where the hell else have you been hanging out with people and heard people discussing that this should be looked into.

The Kochs and Alec only have as much power as the people allow them to have.

Holding a convention would be an incredible show of strength and more so, organizing. Honestly, nothing even needs to be accomplished. The mere fact taht people would see something like this going on would create buzz and get more people involved, which is the key to all change.

You are getting too caught up with immediate gratification with the convention. Awareness must be increased first.

[-] -1 points by bensdad (8977) 6 years ago

For the third and LAST time time - I ask what COULD a convention do? Since you are too afraid or ignorant or lazy too find out - I will tell you- manditory military conscription executing all Catholics a 60% tax rate on everyone manditory abortions make all prescription drugs illegal eliminate inheritance tax eliminate corporate tax eliminate cap gains tax OR ANYTHING ELSE

why do you want to do what alec & koch want done?

and FYI - I have been to over 100 OWS working group meetings
in hundreds of hours, maybe 10 minutes was devoted to article V
and we were too sane to take it further
How many OWS meetings have you been to where Article V was the priority?

http://www.alecwatch.org/ http://www.thenation.com/article/161973/alec-exposed-koch-connection

[-] 1 points by OTP (-203) from Tampa, FL 6 years ago

Wow...I mean....wow...

You are one terrified dude. You think that Occupiers holding a Convention would lead to that? Way to have faith in the people.

What COULD happen at a convention could be incredible. But as usual, if risk is involved you arent interested.

And we are all aware of how many meetings you've attended, it doesnt mean you understand what is going on.

[-] 0 points by bensdad (8977) 6 years ago

OK - I'll ask as clearly as I can -
are you talking about an article V convention?
or an OWS convention?

there have been OWS national meetings - open to everyone
virtually nothing was accomplished
I have attended 100+ OWS meetings
how many have you attended and what have YOU accomplished

there never has been an article V convention
do you know what an article V convention is?

[-] -1 points by OTP (-203) from Tampa, FL 6 years ago

I do.

"Virtually nothing was accomplished." No kidding. Its hard work, but the first thing is to keep having them because someone will eventually come out of it.

Why is your workgroup still working on an amendment when others have written decent ones already? OWS and continual planning instead of action is its own worst enemy.

[-] -1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 6 years ago

Occupy ain't pushing an article V convention.! Only right wing wacko Koch/ALEC supporters are pushing it.

Who do you think you are kidding.?

[-] 2 points by GypsyKing (8719) 6 years ago

The .001% have always got some diversionary scheme up their sleeves to try to coopt this movement towards their own ends! They're working it night and day. People need to be really wary of this kind of thing!

[-] 1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 6 years ago

It's important that we branch out and refer people to this site, and speak out in other "forums." The 1% and their GOP foot-soldiers have schemes to undermine everything that empowers the people and redistributes power and funds to them, OWS Forum is the least of their concerns. In this new little forum, we are the 1% in public opinion and consciousness. One big Victory for the bad guys is the killing of Progressive Radio, and the Media Monopoly and over-saturation of 24/7/365/every city RW Hate & Lie Radio. Radio is VERY big, OWS Forum times a Million, or more. As important as getting money out and securing our vote are, News Media are equally important, if not much much more.

[-] 2 points by GypsyKing (8719) 6 years ago

Very true.

[-] 1 points by GypsyKing (8719) 6 years ago

Thanks for bringing this up! Please see my comments to VQkag2 below on this issue. I agree it's very important.

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 6 years ago

Agreed. The Art V idea is so wacky it's gotta be from the right wing wackos.

[-] 2 points by GypsyKing (8719) 6 years ago

Yeah, this crackdown on freedom of the press has been one of the most significant and (surprize) under-reported stories of the last generation. While we slept they muzzled the real free press, and it is a blatantly unconstitutional outrage. This is a must issue if we are to win the fight for this country. You are So Right to bring this issue to the fore.

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 6 years ago

And the control of info makes this most difficult to change.

Precious little on the issue as you say. So many issues that seem more important, but this is a problem that affects all others. Kinda like the Cit United problem.

They affect all our other problems, Info control, & money in politics both represent impediments to change that benefits the 99%.

[-] 2 points by GypsyKing (8719) 6 years ago

I agree, and perhaps even equally. It is a Really important issue. Those who can control the message can control the society. For a long time I've been thinking about this issue, but It just seems there are so many issues . . . we need to prioritiz . . . but still, I think this one has to be on the agenda.

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 6 years ago

It should be a high priority! because as we see, it IS an impediment to resolving ALL problems that face the 99%.

[-] 2 points by GypsyKing (8719) 6 years ago


[-] 0 points by OTP (-203) from Tampa, FL 6 years ago

No one person speaks for the group, rookie.

I simply said its something that gets discussed with occupiers and thats about it.

What did you think about the one man and one woman issues with Philly convention last year?

[-] 2 points by GypsyKing (8719) 6 years ago

Uh . . . sorry.


[-] -1 points by OTP (-203) from Tampa, FL 6 years ago

No offense that reply was for the thread above, follow the lines.

[-] 0 points by VQkag2 (16478) 6 years ago

I don't think very much of the one man & one woman issue or last years Philly convention much at all.

What about you?