Wednesday, October 02, 2013

How the Queen handled a government shutdown: Another reason America needs a monarch

We have observed many times here at Vital Remnants the penchant liberals have for all things Scandinavian (including Canada, a Scandinavian country in North American drag). But, of course, the countries they are always saying we should be like have constitutional monarchies and established state churches.

So liberals should be quite okay with the following historical scenario, offered by Max Fischer in today's Washington Post, in which Fischer responds to Georgetown professor Erik Voeten's assertion that the government shutdown is unprecedented: "I cannot think of a single foreign analogy to what is happening in the U.S. today," says the historically illiterate Voeten.

As a matter fact, there is a historical precedent for this: Australia in 1975:
Australia's 1975 shutdown ended pretty differently, though, than they do here in America. Queen Elizabeth II's official representative in Australia, Governor General Sir John Kerr, simply dismissed the prime minister. He appointed a replacement, who immediately passed the spending bill to fund the government. Three hours later, Kerr dismissed the rest of Parliament. Then Australia held elections to restart from scratch. And they haven't had another shutdown since.
And what did the Australian people think about the Queen's move to replace the politicians they elected with Fraser? They swept Fraser and his party to victory in both houses in the next election. It is a fascinating account and can be found here.

My favorite part is when, after the Governor General Kerr fired the Labor Party's leader and appointed Malcomb Fraser Prime Minister, the Labor Party revolted and passed a no confidence resolution in Fraser. It was at that point that Kerr fired everybody with a formal proclamation that ended with the words, "God Save the Queen."

You gotta love it.



27 comments:

Anonymous said...

I nominate Martin for queen.

Martin Cothran said...

Lol. I have to admit, that's pretty funny.

Hat's off.

Daniel said...

Martin,

I have to say, having someone with the ability to fire Congress sounds pretty good right now. :)

Peace,
Daniel

Singring said...

'I have to say, having someone with the ability to fire Congress sounds pretty good right now.'

Well, there is someone with that ability: the people.

For example, if Martin is so discontent with the HoR at the moment, perhaps he should have been promoting alternatives to the five Republicans from Kentucky currently in the HoR?

Like Ed Whitfield, who says this: “President Barack Obama and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid ought to be ashamed of themselves for their unwillingness to work with the House of Representatives to reach a compromise to keep the government functioning."

It's not as if this was the first time they (House Republicans) have done this kind of thing...

But no...he thinks it's a much better idea to istall a bloodline at the top to throw out democratially elected governments at will.

Yay for the middle ages in schools and in politics!

Lee said...

The Constitution vested the "power of the purse" in Congress, and specifically said all taxes must originate in the House.

(Justice John Roberts simply ignored that when he declared Obamacare was constitutional because it is a tax, not a mandate. "The Constitution means exactly what I say it means, neither more nor less." -- Chief Justice Humpty Dumpty.)

Since Congress has the power of the purse, they are exercising it.

It takes two to have an impasse. Why not fire the president instead of Congress?

If history is relevant and monarchies are good, it's worth noting that in past centuries, Parliament has held the power of the purse and the Crown was the executive. Parliament could raise money but could not spend; the Crown could spend but could not raise money.

Division of powers is good.

Singring said...

'Justice John Roberts simply ignored that when he declared Obamacare was constitutional because it is a tax, not a mandate.'

Sorry what?

Obamacare originated and was first passed in the House.

So it was passed by exactly that part of the legislative that has the power of the purse. How does that violate the constitution?

Lee said...

> Obamacare originated and was first passed in the House.

Check your facts.

Lee said...

http://www.volokh.com/2012/09/13/new-obamacare-challenge-the-origination-clause/

"The Origination Clause requires “all bills for raising revenue” to “originate” in the House of Representatives. But the Obama Administration’s health care law did not originate in the House; it originated in the Senate, when Senator Harry Reid “amended” a bill the House had passed by striking out all of its text and replacing it with the Senate-written bill that eventually became Obamacare. "

Lee said...

So let's just cut to the chase...

Assuming the facts in Randy Barnett's article are true, the Senate essentially gutted the House bill and substituted one they had written. Included in that was the, uh, "tax".

So here's the question: if Tolstoy's publisher told him, we have to amend "War and Peace", but then sends him the result, which happens to read exactly like "Dr. Zhivago", did Tolstoy originate the book?

The constitution allows the Senate to amend House-originated revenue bills. It doesn't say anything about re-writing them completely, and says even less about turning a non-revenue bill into a revenue bill.

Singring said...

A commenter on that blog has already explained the absurdity of that 'origination in the Senate' claim.

Put briefly, the constitution reads:

'Article I, Section 7: [1] All Bills for raising Revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives; but the Senate may propose or concur with Amendments as on other Bills.'

Maybe you want to argue with what is and isn't an amendment - fair enough. But clearly, based only on the text which doesn't specify any limitations on the amendment, even an amendment that completely changes the text of the bill is a constitutionally valid amendment.

Lee said...

So then why would the Constitution's framers bother with putting that particular restriction on where revenue bills needed to originate?

Martin Cothran said...

Singring,

But no...he thinks it's a much better idea to istall a bloodline at the top to throw out democratially elected governments at will.

I'm so sorry. I thought I was doing what the liberals wanted me to do here. They are the ones who are always extolling the virtues of Sweden and Norway and Denmark, all of which have monarchies.

"A recent study in Sweden shows ..." is a linguistic formulation that every liberal is taught on his mother's knee.

I just assumed since we are supposed to be like them in all these other respects that we should want to be like them in this respect too.

Gosh, even when I try to get it right, I get it wrong.

Is this one of the "unintentional inaccuracies" you were talking about the other day?

Singring said...

'Is this one of the "unintentional inaccuracies" you were talking about the other day?'

Not at all. I was trying to be charitable then.

This is one of the intentional ones.

Singring said...

'So then why would the Constitution's framers bother with putting that particular restriction on where revenue bills needed to originate?'

How should I know?

If they wanted to curtail amendments, why didn't they put that in there?

Lee said...

> How should I know?

How disappointing.

Very well, since you don't know, I would propose that when the framers said revenue bills must originate in the House, that they really meant to say revenue bills must originate in the House.

It may have had a secret meaning, of course, and I think that meaning would be, such bills must originate (pssst!) in the House.

And this would imply that when the Senate guts a bill and inserts its own version, then that bill did not really originate in House, but the Senate.

There is a difference between amending a bill and re-writing it. If you disagree, then it would follow that the only important consideration how we can plausibly misconstrue the Constitution and exploit loopholes.

I'm sure Justice Roberts would approve.

Anonymous said...

What really bothers me is the constitutionality of Pres. Obama selectively granting extensions and waivers on what is supposed to be a law...to quote the current Democratic mantra.

Lee said...

> What really bothers me is the constitutionality of Pres. Obama selectively granting extensions and waivers on what is supposed to be a law...to quote the current Democratic mantra.

That's just something the framers forgot to include in the Constitution.

I'm sure we can all agree that they never had any idea that someone as idealistic, pure, and trustworthy as President Obama would ever inhabit that office.

Had they only know, they would have quickly written into the Constitution that Congress may make the laws, but a good and wonderful President may ignore all or parts of them as he sees fit.

But they didn't. So we have to sort of divine their intentions, since they didn't express them. Emanations of penumbras, you know.

Singring said...

'Very well, since you don't know, I would propose that when the framers said revenue bills must originate in the House, that they really meant to say revenue bills must originate in the House.'

And Obamacare did.

It was then amended in the Senate. Exactly as per the constitution.

Anonymous said...

Until Obamacare hit the Supreme Court every single Democrat and Obama were specifically denying that it was a tax at all! The first person who ever said that was Chief Justice Roberts. This monstrosity wasn't reconciled in Conference Committee which is the normal procedure only because Mass. was sending a new Senator to Washington promising to make his first vote an Obamacare repeal.

Daniel said...

Singring,

I realize the American people have the power to fire Congress, but as elections won’t be happening for a while, what the [insert suitably profane Latin word here] are we supposed to do now?

There are probably things the public can do to wake the bickerers in Washington from their slumbers, I’m just having trouble coming up with any. Thoughts?

Sincerely,
Daniel

Lee said...

Daniel, sometimes bickering is important. The House has passed a bill to fund the government at the requested levels except for Obamacare. So far, neither side has budged.

So it all depends on who's to blame. If President Obama is always entitled to everything he wants, then the House is to blame. If the House has the prerogative to fund what it wishes, which they assuredly do, then maybe some blame lies with the Senate and the President.

But we know how the news media will continue to spin it, don't we?

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