Author Archive | Roger Copple

Forgiveness and Radical Egalitarianism: When Nations Emulate Jesus, Buddha, and Gandhi

Today’s major religions and spiritual disciplines such as Yoga and Zen lack officially expressed political preferences (PROUT, Ananda Marga Yoga’s social-economic component could be the one exception http://www.anandamarga.org/social-philosophy/prout.htm ). Likewise, radical Leftists in the many varieties of communism, socialism, and anarchism lack an equal focus on individual spiritual growth; historically, some have lacked a focus on nonviolence as well. In short, a spiritual politics or a political spirituality is needed that considers the ecology of the planet and the specific needs of every nation of the world.

Two and a half years ago, I retired as an elementary school teacher at the age of 60, in part to study some of things I did not quite master in high school and college. As I now study European, US, and world history, I am just amazed at the countless, stupid wars that have been fought because of greed, aggrandizement, and imperialism. Equally troubling to me is the fact that about half of the world– over 3 billion people–lives on less than $2.50 a day!… Read the rest

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Another Third Party: the New Constitution Party

Picture: National Archives and Records Administration (PD)

Another Third Party: the New Constitution Party
September 29, 2012
By Roger Copple

The non-electoral methods of the Occupy Wall Street movement are energizing millions who have been alienated for a long time from the two-party system of sham that the 1% controls.

Some reformers, most likely in support of the Occupy movement, are proposing an amendment to overturn the Citizens United Supreme Court ruling in 2010 that empowers corporations to unfairly influence political campaigns with large financial donations.

But even if Citizens United was overturned, how many years would it take to make it happen, and would it make that much difference, considering all the other major democratic reforms needed? I say no.

A much more effective strategy, in the long run, is to get a Twenty-Eighth Amendment proposal passed that makes it easier to amend and easier to abolish the current constitution.… Read the rest

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The 99% Rally for a Constitutional Convention

Picture: 'Neutrality' (CC)

The 99% Rally for a Constitutional Convention

The non-electoral methods of the Occupy Wall Street movement are energizing millions who have been alienated for a long time from the two-party system of sham that the 1% controls.

Some reformers, most likely in support of the Occupy movement, are proposing an amendment to overturn the Citizens United Supreme Court ruling in 2010 that empowers corporations to unfairly influence political campaigns with their large financial donations.

But even if Citizens United was overturned, how many years would it take to make it happen, and would it make that much difference, considering all the other major democratic reforms needed? I say no.

A more effective strategy would be a Twenty-Eighth Amendment proposal for a national Constitutional Convention whose delegates are elected through Proportional Representation. Here is how the proposal could read:

Proposal for a Twenty-Eighth Amendment: How to Have a Constitutional Convention

Every four years when Americans vote for a president, they can vote for or against having a Constitutional Convention.… Read the rest

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World Peace through Egalitarianism

EqualTo achieve world peace, one has to focus on international, national, local, and personal issues. The three most important goals in achieving world peace are egalitarianism, ecological wisdom, and emotional maturity. Participatory and consensus democracy and the reduction of hierarchy in government and in the workplace are integral components in attaining egalitarianism.

Considering the rapid growth of world population, environmental degradation, the vast disparity between the rich and poor nations, the dangers of nuclear energy and weapons, and the effects of corporatocracy — it is necessary to view the world as one organism, even if that is not what it is. Take the healthy human body. The heart, lungs, brain, and kidneys do not compete. They cooperate.

The ecosystem is being overloaded by unsustainable growth, species are becoming extinct at an alarming rate, drilling for oil easily is reaching its peak, and global injustice and inequality are on the increase. Ross Jackson in his book Occupy World Street: A Global Roadmap for Radical Economic and Political Reform presents evidence that the planet is under siege and our civilization is already in the middle of a global collapse.… Read the rest

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Constitutional Amendment Proposals That OccupyWallStreet Should Consider

ConstitutionOur current constitution which was written during the summer of 1787 and implemented in 1789 needs, at the very least, to be updated and written in simple and clear words that empower today’s citizen. Much of our current constitution deals with matters that are no longer relevant, such as the embarrassing references to any slave as being counted as 3/5 of a person.

Before I propose my Twenty-Eighth Amendment which simplifies and revises Article V of our current Constitution, I will print Article V immediately below, so that you can be reminded of its tortuous, vague, and confusing words:

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 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.

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The Third Constitution Of The United States

800px-Constitution_We_the_People

The Third Constitution of the United States

Preamble

We the People of the United States establish this Third Constitution of the United States of North America to promote human rights, social justice, ecological wisdom, peace, and egalitarianism for the citizens of our country and ultimately to all citizens of the world.

Neighborhood togetherness and community solidarity shall be valued above individual and corporate aggrandizement that jeopardize the participatory democracy of We the People. The Earth and the world will be viewed as one organism, like the human body: the cells, tissues, organs, and organ systems have to cooperate together or else the whole organism suffers and dies. (The first U.S. government was under the Articles of Confederation. The second was implemented with the presidency of George Washington in 1789.)

Human Rights

1. We the People have a right to participate in a government that is built from the bottom-up, something that has never been tried before, instead of the usual, bureaucratic control from the top-down.… Read the rest

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Congress Refuses an Article V Convention — Has Our Government Been Hijacked?

Signing of the Constitution. Painting by Howard Chandler Christy.

Signing of the Constitution. Painting by Howard Chandler Christy.

Article V is the only part of the US Constitution that tells how we can change the Constitution. The states, not Congress, propose amendments at an Article V Convention. An Article V Symposium was held at Cooley Law School on September 17, 2010 in Lansing, Michigan. Bill Walker, cofounder of Friends of the Article V Convention, shared how he filed two federal lawsuits stating that Congress was obligated to call an Article V Convention. The latter lawsuit (Walker v. the Members of Congress in 2004) was appealed to the Supreme Court and the Supreme Court declared, as it had in three other separate decisions, that Congress must call for an Article V Convention. But Congress has simply refused in violation of the US Constitution.

To listen to Bill Walker’s speech and to the other scholars at the symposium, who all argue that we should want, not fear, an Article V Convention, click on this link.… Read the rest

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Does An Orderly and Safe Way to Fundamentally Change the U.S. Government Exist?

This article below is a sequel to my essay,Defeating the New World Order and Creating a New Society That Allows Capitalists and Communists to Live Together in Peace After Establishing a New Constitution,” posted previously to disinfo.com.

Thomas Jefferson stated in the Declaration of Independence, “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 … to effect their Safety and Happiness.”

If you look at the Constitution of the United States, there is only one paragraph (Article V) that tells how we can change our government. But Article V only discusses how to propose and then ratify amendments.  It does not say anything about the procedures to rewrite the entire Constitution.   At their website, an organization called Friends of the Article V Convention has verified that there have been over 700 petitions for a constitutional convention from state legislatures, but Congress refuses to grant that right, which is an inherent right of “The People.”  [1]

The Friends of the Article V Convention insist that the constitutional convention that is now demanded by the states, based on Article V, can be only for proposing amendments, not about rewriting the US Constitution.  They want a constitutional convention to discuss any amendment issues (like requiring a balanced budget, term limits, and so forth) as they are submitted by the states–amendments which later must be ratified by ¾ of the states.  Read the quote below from their website:

“Constitutional scholars agree that an Article V Convention is limited strictly and exclusively to proposing amendments to the Constitution, which must then be ratified by three-fourths of the states before taking effect.  The Convention itself possesses no legislative or taxing authority: it can only debate, formulate, and propose amendments.”

Chief Justice Warren Burger [2] is a constitutional scholar who does not agree with the constitutional scholars above:

“…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 meeting in 1787 ignored the limit placed by the confederation Congress ‘for the sole and express purpose’.”

Organizations like the John Birch Society [3], the American Policy Center [4], and no doubt millions of other individuals, on the right, left, and in the middle are very fearful of a constitutional convention which has never been tried since the first one in 1787.  Conservatives are sounding the alarm that a constitutional convention would take away the Bill of Rights (especially their gun rights), encourage abortions and euthanasia.  Radicals on the left are also apprehensive about what conservatives might do at a constitutional convention.  And apparently, for different reasons, the US Congress also dreads a constitutional convention, and refuses to turn over any power to the various states to either amend or abolish the constitution.  Here is what the Constitution itself states:

Article 5.… Read the rest

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Defeating The New World Order and Creating a New Society That Allows Capitalists and Communists to Live Together in Peace After Establishing a New Constitution

The bureaucracy, inefficiency, waste, national debt, loss of states’ rights, erosion of individual rights, my experience in the public schools, and the military interventionism of our government caused me to become a libertarian capitalist, until recently.  In my younger, college days, I was very concerned about poverty and world hunger.  My parents were quite alarmed when I told them I was a democratic socialist.  I also believed that a democratic, world federal government would abolish the foolish wars that result from national rivalry.  My favorite expression was from Karl Marx: “From each according to his ability, to each according to his need.” Years later, my concern about environmental degradation motivated me to attend the first national conference of the Green Movement in 1987. [1] Six people from Indiana attended, and I was one of them.

So whether it is the result of being wishy-washy or seeing the limitations of various political ideologies, I can say I have been on both sides of the fence.… Read the rest

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Noam Chomsky, Libertarians, Intentional Communities, and the Venus Project

In searching for YouTube videos of Noam Chomsky debating libertarians such as Ron Paul or Austrian economists such as Murray Rothbard, I found this:

Chomsky argues in this video that “if you go back to the Constitutional debates, they are all very clear: Madison, the framer of the Constitution, makes clear that the prime responsibility of government is to protect the minority, the opulent, against the majority.”

“Madison warned of what he called ‘the danger of the leveling spirit among the growing number of people who labor under all the hardships of life and secretly sigh for a more equal distribution of its blessings’.” Chomsky thus argued that the primary principle of our Constitution was that “democracy is unacceptable.”…

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