The Constitution, demystified (Part I)

20 11 2008

I am a big supporter of the Constitution. I know that sounds silly to say, but a lot of people that I know either know too little about the document itself and what it says to form an opinion or they directly support ideas that go against the Constitution itself. To me, the Constitution is an amazing piece of innovation in government for just one document. We got some of the smartest individuals of the time together and had them create a system of government that embraced the ideals that our ancestors yearned for when they left their own countries and immigrated to the colonies. I thought I’d dedicate a little time turning this 200 year old document into something that people today can easily understand.

I’ll be doing it in bits and pieces, here is Article I about the Congress.

The Preamble

Hey world! We’re looking for a form of government that embraces justice, peace, national security, and generally awesome times for all of our people. Here’s how we plan to do it.

Article I – What’s the job of Congress?

Section 1

The king was an asshole so we don’t trust this much power to one person so we’re going to give it to a group. Actually, he was enough of an asshole that we’re going to make two – the House and the Senate.

Section 2

The House will have members that are elected every two years. To be eligible, you must be 25 (It’s 1776, you’ll probably be dead by the time you’re 50 so we can’t make it TOO late), be a citizen for at least 7 years, and live where you are elected (duh). The amount of representatives will be based on the population and we’ll just it every 10th year (we’re too lazy to do it any more frequently). You get 1 representative per 30,000 citizens but if you’re below 30,000, you get at least 1.

The House can impeach the President if he has an affair with an intern or other such crimes. (but not like secret detainment or wire tapping or anything like that)

Section 3

The Senate will have 2 representatives from each state and will serve for six years, with it staggered into 3 groups that are elected every 2 years. You have to be 30, be a resident for 9 years, and live in the state where you’re elected. This is a much more exclusive club. Cool people only.

The Vice President is the President of the Senate but can only vote if there is a tie. Otherwise he just sits around and looks old.

The Senators are the people that hold the trial for the impeachment of said presidential adulterers or other such crimes. Two thirds of the people have to agree that “if the glove doesn’t fit, you must acquit” (Oh wait, that was OJ)

Section 4

Boring stuff about when they should meet. Friday is Hawaiian shirt day, newest senator brings the beer.

Section 5

You can get rid of a member of Congress with 2/3 agreeing. That’s 66.66 Senators. That means 66 and then one that’s asleep or something.

The Congress will make its own rules about how to run the meeting.

Hey, write this stuff down. It’s probably important.

Make sure that you let some one know if you’re going to go out. Old people tend to wander off.

Section 6

Sure, we’ll pay you a little bit of money for doing this for us.

You can’t be arrested for stuff you do on the Congressional floor or in traveling to or from work. How awesome is that?

Don’t take any other jobs while you’re working for us. That’s not cool.

Section 7

We need to make some money for this sum bitch. The House will be in charge of this stuff but we’ll let the Senate give some advice too.

If we want to make a law, both the Senate and House have to pass it and then it has to be signed by the President. He can veto it if he doesn’t like it but if 2/3 of the House says that they want it, they can override him. Take that Mr. President, take that. If the President is on vacation and doesn’t return the bill after 10 days, then screw him… it’s a law. Was fly fishing really worth it?

Section 8

Hey Congress, you can do these things and nothing else:

1) Collect taxes (we’ll hate you for this)

2) Borrow money and pay debts on behalf of the US (we’re sure you’ll be like a teenage with a credit card)

3) Regulate trade (don’t let everything get made by China. We can really make our own cutting boards… seriously, it’s just a block of wood with a handle.)

4) Figure out how and when people can become citizens

5) Make and distribute money (bling bling mother fucker)

6) Establish a post office (how else will we put Elvis on a stamp in 2 hundred years)

7) Dealing with copyright (bet you’ll never see Napster coming)

8 ) establish lower federal court (like Judge Judy)

9) Declaring war

10) Raising and supporting an army, navy and a militia

11) Making laws (duh)

Section 9

Here’s what you can’t do:

1) You can’t suspend the rights of people to not be detained without a trial. Lawyers need love too

2) You can’t enact any law that is retroactively in effect.

3) Don’t play favorites with states. Except Idaho, you can forget about Idaho if you want

4) Don’t tax interstate commerce

5) Don’t take any money from the Treasury unless it’s for a law. Plan ahead if you need beer money.

6) Don’t give out any special titles of nobility. Nobody cares about the Duke of Yorkshire anyway.

7) Don’t take any money or gifts from kings. We pay well enough.

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One response

20 11 2008
Tim Martin

Can’t wait until you get to the part where they make beer illegal and then later realize that it was a stupid decision

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