Video: ReasonTV on the Debt Ceiling

cross-posted from the Pennsylvania Tenth Amendment Center

Until the debt ceiling was established in 1917, congress had to separately approve every new debt that the government took on.  The debt ceiling was established to make it faster and easier for the treasury department to borrow money during WWI.   Predictably, the war ended, but the treasury department’s expanded power didn’t.  When peace time came, the congress never reclaimed it’s Constitutional role for managing the U.S. debt.

Now, 94 years and 14 trillion dollars later, we’re periodically treated to this theatrical performance where the party in power threatens catastrophe if the debt ceiling isn’t raised and the minority party claims the mantle of fiscal responsibility in order to score political points for the next election.

This year, the Republicans get their turn claiming to be the thrifty ones, but it wasn’t that way five years ago.  In 2006, Senate Majority leader Harry Reid said,

How can the Republican majority in this Congress explain to their constituents that trillions of dollars in new debt is good for our economy?  How can they explain that they think it’s fair to force our children, our grandchildren, our great grandchildren to finance this debt through higher taxes.  That’s what it will have to be.  Why is it right to increase our nation’s dependence on foreign creditors?

After the 2006 elections, in her iconic “One Hundred Hours” essay in the Huffington Post, house Democrat Speaker to-be, Nancy Pelosi wrote,


Passing Thoughts

When people qualify the word “justice” with adjectives like “social” or “racial” or “environmental”, what they usually mean is, “injustice”.  Justice applies to individuals, not groups.  It is impossible for the federal government (or anyone else) to provide justice to groups by violating individuals’ rights. === My truck is not the planet’s thermostat.  Neither is…


An Opportunity to Say NO!

A few days ago, the Tenth Amendment Center posted this facebook status update

BREAKING: Feds actively lobby on a bill in Austin – AND issue direct threat to Texas over TSA nullification bill today….Texas appears to have crumbled. More news and details coming soon…

When this article posts tomorrow, there will be more details available, but right now I don’t know the entire situation.  I have learned, from the Lone Star Report that the US Department of Justice sent a letter to the Texas legislature saying,

“If HR [sic] 1937 were enacted, the federal government would likely seek an emergency stay of the statute… Unless or until such a stay were granted, TSA would likely be required to cancel any flight or series of flights for which it could not ensure the safety of passengers and crew.

“We urge that you consider the ramifications of this bill before casting your vote,”

As a result of this “arm twisting”, Dan Patrick, the sponsor of the TSA nullification bill pulled it – saying, “I will pull HB 1937 down, but I will stand for Liberty in the state of Texas”.  While I can appreciate the pressure that Representative Patrick was under, this was a mistake.  He may like to think so, but on this occasion, he did not stand for Liberty.


PA Tenth Amendment Legislation Status – May 14

Update – May 15, 2011: Fixed incorrect status and link to SB9 instead of SR9.  Sorry for the confusion.

The list below contains the Tenth Amendment related legislation which we are currently tracking in the Pennsylvania legislature.  This week’s updates include:

  • SB3 reported favorably out of committee and are up for “second consideration”.*
  • SB354 – received a COMMUNICATIONS AND TECHNOLOGY committee hearing on May 11 (audio & video here).
  • SB1003 was added to the list of items we’re tracking.

If you become aware of any additional Tenth Amendment legislative activity, please let us know.


Status of PA’s Tenth Amendment Legislation – May 7, 2011

This is the Tenth Amendment related legislation we are currently tracking in the Pennsylvania legislature.  If you become aware of additional Tenth Amendment legislative activity, please let us know.

Asserting State Prerogatives under the Tenth Amendment

Health Care Freedom – Asserting Tenth Amendment Authority over Health Care


Two Challenges

A challenge for big-government conservatives: find a constitutional justification (rationalization) for the federal “war on drugs” that doesn’t also allow it to outlaw growing your own food in your own back-yard garden or to regulate the temperature of your living room. A challenge for big-government liberals: find a constitutional justification (rationalization) for a federal takeover…


How Can I Help?

EDITOR’S NOTE: This article, written by Steve Palmer for the Pennsylvania Tenth Amendment Center answers one of the most frequent questions we get – “What can I do?” While directed towards people in PA, the principles and suggestions are universal – and people in any state can act on his recommendations. Join us!


At the Pennsylvania Tenth Amendment Center, we are working to enhance liberty for Pennsylvanians by restoring fidelity to the Constitution. Our efforts are largely focused in these areas:

  • Education
  • Influencing legislation
  • Grass roots activation

As with any other grassroots group, we are always looking for help. If you want to get involved, here are some things you can do.


Sam Rohrer at the PA Leadership Conference

By way of their facebook page, Americans For Prosperity’s Pennsylvania State Director, Sam Rohrer, speaks at the Pennsylvania Leadership Conference.

“The only solution (to “Obamacare”) is to structurally unchange it… for the states to nullify…”

Listen to the enthusiasm when he says the word, “nullify” (at about 8:48).

Towards Tyranny or Away From It?

cross-posted from the Pennsylvania Tenth Amendment Center We can be moving towards tyranny or away from it.  No other choice exists. Bush Obama Afghanistan, Iraq Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya No Child Left Behind Race to the Top Medicare Part-D Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act S-chip Guantanamo Bay with indefinite detention Guantanamo Bay with indefinite detention,…