Thursday, February 17, 2011

God bless America, because we sure could use it

In what I am sure will earn another segment on The Daily Show, South Carolina lawmakers are debating a resolution that calls for a constitutional convention to consider an amendment allowing states to repeal any federal law that disturbs their sensibilities. In what would be a sick joke in saner times the phrase "states' rights" is once again being used complete with strange little gleams in the eyes of good old Southern boys eager to protect their wives, daughters, and property from some federal phantom bogeyman.

That this sounds so much like so many previous attempts to cloak neo-Antebellum mindsets in modern clothing leaves many with some commonsense numb with despair. Its not like South Carolina lawmakers have nothing better to do, many of our schools are educational wastelands, the unemployment rate is 10.7%, and huge segments of the state infrastructure could be used as movie sets for war torn third-world countries. But no, aside from a few exceptions South Carolina had never really entered the twentieth century and like the country itself is completely lost in dealing with the problems of the twenty-first.

So like petulant children, we rehash futile old crusades that we were on the wrong side of history to begin with making us a laughing stock. There is one consolation in all this, seventeen other states are considering similar resolutions so all the ridicule cannot be directed at us. But I'm sure that in some Chinese think tank the highly educate types whose job it is to make their country number one in the world are rolling in floor laughing wondering if the Americans will just tear themselves apart.

Nullification lives again.
States' rights vs. federal rule took center stage Wednesday as South Carolina House lawmakers battled over a resolution to give states veto-like power over federal rules and regulations.
Ultimately, House members approved the resolution – backed by House Speaker Bobby Harrell, R-Charleston – and the Republican majority, by a 72-44 vote.
The measure asks Congress to call a constitutional convention to consider a 28th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution that would allow states to repeal any federal law if two-thirds of state legislatures disagree with it.
“This would give the state's a veto right that would not be the same as but would be similar to a presidential veto,” said state Rep. Jay Lucas, R-Darlington, who led the charge for the bill.
Saying they are concerned about the erosion of states' rights and a federal government that they see as overreaching, 17 states are considering the proposal, Lucas said. South Carolina is the second state where the idea, which still must win Senate approval, has been voted on.
Democrats said the measure is a distraction from the state's more pressing problems, including its 10.7 percent jobless rate -- one of the highest in the nation -- and the need to create jobs. They called the measure a misguided reaction to Democratic-led federal initiatives, including health-care reform and a threat to minorities, women and others not in power.
“It was the federal government that took care of all aspects of civil rights legislation,” said state Rep. David Mack, D-Charleston, a African-American lawmaker who grew up in the civil rights era. “South Carolina had to be dragged screaming and kicking because they didn't want to do it because (S.C. lawmakers said) the federal government was encroaching and overstepping its grounds.”
Republicans said the resolution's intent is not to disenfranchise minorities or women. Instead, they said the resolution is non-partisan effort that Democrats should join Republicans in supporting to preserve states' rights.
“This would have to be (a federal bill) so egregious that (state legislatures controlled by) Democrats and Republicans would have to jump up and say, 'We're not going to take it anymore,’ ” Lucas said.


Doc Häagen-Dazs said...

To sum up a discussion I heard this morning on the BBC among European thinkers: the biggest problem facing the world's recovery, peace, and prosperity is the ineffectiveness of American domestic politics and government.

Randal Graves said...

Dude, you hit on the solution to your state's economic misery:

huge segments of the state infrastructure could be used as movie sets for war torn third-world countries.

Entice Michael Bay to move in and give him free reign for set locations. Big bucks!

Liberality said...

Hi BB. In Indiana they are pushing to make marriage only legal between a man and woman. That is the most important issue that Indiana faces believe it or not ;~)

So don't feel so all alone, the crazies are in every state now.

MRMacrum said...

Many in the South have never forgiven the North for kickin their butt. For several years back at the turn of the century, I was a regular poster on a forum advocating secession of the old South from the evil Union and its rapists and pillagers. I thought my logical and pragmatic posts might break through the sludge and hate, but alas, I might as well have slammed my head against a wall for all the good it did me.

Now that the insane seem destined to inherit our Earth, what SC is doing is just the same ole same ole. Up here, the whackos are gettin busy also.

TRUTH 101 said...

Is your state like my county BB? They hate government unless something pisses them off and they demand to know what government is going to do about it.

They don't want zoning or land use regulation unless their neighbors want to build something they don't like. But that's different.

We live in a crazy world.

Beach Bum said...

Doc: Well if the signs and portents I'm seeing are any guide they better fasten their seat belts because is going to be a bumpy ride. The level of stupidity and moronic behavior will only increase in the short and middle term.

Not only go I hear regular examples of Dark Age mentality concerning distrust of science but the ever looming Rapture could happen at any minute.

Randal: LOL!!!!
Damn straight! We can even give Bay a great rate on ignorant barbarian extras.

Liberality: Given that stupidity is the highest form of fashion in the United States right now like I keep saying it would serve us all to haul ass down to Tierra del Fuego. Its far away from any rabid resurgence of resource seeking American Imperialism but you can still have pizza delivered to your house.

Mike: Yeah, the "League of the South" was/is big in my little backwater and I had a few run-ins with them myself. About all I can figure is that this is another sign of an uneducated people with far too much time on their hands.

Beach Bum said...

Truth: That about says it, I bet you one-hundred dollars that if South Carolina gets slammed with a hurricane this summer all the people bitching about "federal overreach" will be screaming like insipid little children if FEMA isn't standing on the ruins of their house the next day with food, money, and a new house being flown in by helicopter.

Mycue23 said...

South Carolina already tried this with nullification laws almost 200 years ago. Perhaps they've forgotten how that turned out. Since I'm now a resident of this glorious state, I guess I'm now stained by the stupidity of state lawmakers who either don't understand or who have never read the constitution or simply can't recall anything that's happened before last week. Oh well, I guess it's better than being in Mississippi. Although just barely.

Mr. Charleston said...

It has always puzzled me how a state with such fine and gentle people could be so friggin insane.

Oh, BTW Crum, the North's win in the War of Northern Aggression was hardly a butt kicking by the north. More like a grinding down with overwhelming numbers. Not that I dislike the outcome, but it could have ended years and tens of thousands of lives earlier if the North had actually done a little butt kicking.

Chef Cthulhu said...

Sometimes you read something and just sit, gobsmacked, unable to do anything but relate your own state of gobsmackedness. This is such a time.

I am gobsmacked.

Windsmoke. said...

Don't know much about American politics but it looks like to me that schools, unemployment and state infrasructure have been put into the too hard basket because people have other hidden agenda's that will only benefit themselves and not the wider community as a whole :-).

Beach Bum said...

Mycue: Amen, its delusions of importance not history that South Carolina has generally been good at. That slave then is always sweep underneath the rug.

Mr. Chaleston: The question of sanity in this state is one I often wonder about myself. Now that the rest of the country seems infected only disturbs me more.

Chef: LOL!!!

I am myself sir and plan on treating my delicate condition with about a case of beer Friday night. Throw in chips and salsa and I should be well on my way to recovery.

Windsmoke: What you wrote about covers it. One question, how hard is it for a Beach Bum to move to Australia? I looked into it before and it did not seem promising but I heard something different recently.

Doc Häagen-Dazs said...

I'm not saying beach bums don't fit in in Australia. I'm just askin' if that isn't too far to go. I am living breathing evidence that beach bums fit in well here on the left wing coast of the USA. Like natives.

Beach Bum said...

Doc: In what may seem like a tongue-in-cheek remark I actually worry a little about how America will react when it finally realizes it ain't top dog in the world anymore.

I fear an extreme right-wing backlash in the short to middle term to the point our greatest fears might come true. So, if I could, I'd have my family out of this country and as far away as possible.

lime said...

so is the state militia building up for the next secession too?

Doc Häagen-Dazs said...

Lime, I got news for you. Your state national guard is in Afghanistan.

Ranch Chimp said...

Tried to comment but it didnt go through, I'll try here again. But those link's just came up saying something like "Error 404" and a blank page, except for the top one from "The State" homepage. But this is really some twisted stuff dude, I'm alway's looking for the money bite, and sometime's miss the other motive's, especially on the old school stuff concerning moral issue's and such. This is also more of this "state to state" thing that has been sweeping the nation, and also a slippery slope folk's need to watch out for especially, the state's are getting more and more divided also being pushed by the right wing now. And "truth" is accurate as far as when folk's want gvmnt to step in or when they want them out, such as the Hurricane bit, etc. I seen on the news at glance (hadnt read up on it yet though) about Texas GOP now trying to push some twisted legislation to make it so gal's getting an abortion have to look at that x- ray video (forgot what their called?) before hand, unless their a sexual assault victim, and hear stories that there are little arm's/ limb's and stuff ... I reckon trying to like make them watch a horror flick or something to instill some kind of fear, hesitation or what have you, I reckon. Some really twisted shit too happen's that isnt all money motivated. Thanx for the read Guy ... got to shower real quick, then fixin to hit the road, got a long drive.

Later Bum

Beach Bum said...

Lime: Not yet, the National Guard here is up to its armpits in deployments, coming back from one, or getting ready to go again. The State Guard is a bunch of....Well, I'll just not touch that one.

Doc: So is most everyone in teh Guard.

Ranch: also a slippery slope

A very scary slope.

Will "take no prisoners" Hart said...

It sounds like Haley Barbour and Rick Parry had kid and named him South Carolina.

Beach Bum said...

Will: I hope they try and run Haley Barbour for president in 2012. His defense of Nathan Bedford Forrest was as funny as it was offensive.

Will "take no prisoners" Hart said...

Boy, has the Republican Party ever devolved. Compared to this current crop (and, YES, I WOULD include that Wisconsin governor), guys like Bob Dole and Howard Baker actually bear a resemblance to Lincoln.