By: Marcus Perriello | Our Voice Contributor
First, there was the Bill of Rights; ten distinct stipulations designed to keep the tyrannical forces of Government at bay so the people could be free to experience liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Then, in 1787, the official passage of the United States Constitution was achieved. Rather than being an expansion of basic rights, this document was meant to serve as a set of laws and procedures under which the U.S. Government would be eternally bound.
Along with these textual readouts came a degree of ambiguity that would allow for interpretation as time went on, and for such interpretations to be projected in accordance with the changing of the times. All in all, this seems like a most sensible and reasonable approach to ensuring the future of a nation, as history has proven time and again that trying to lock things into stasis is ultimately self-defeating and short-sighted. Still, that doesn’t prevent those in power from finding ways to work around these sacred texts for the purposes of Greed and a Lust for Power, no matter how many checks and balances are in place. No amount of legislation can compensate for the human condition.
This is why Democracy has been proven to be the single most effective method to help society in adapting to change. Yet despite Americans’ belief in Democracy and their outward declarations as such, the United States was not officially established as a Democracy; nor was it intended to be. If it were, Democracy would have been expanded beyond the boundaries of the halls of power and instantly accessible, by right, to the general public.
Some would argue that this is already the case because Americans do hold public elections. But simply holding public elections is not a true indication of Democracy. Such events can be used as window dressing to disguise the inner workings that govern the halls of power, as most Americans will attest. Other examples are countries like Russia, North Korea, China, Turkey, and Brazil. Each of these nations has public elections, but the public ultimately has no say in the policies that govern their countries. The same applies to the United States. Every study conducted on this issue has shown that the will of the people has virtually no impact on actual policy. Again, this is because the true essence of Democracy is solely concentrated within the established halls of power.
On top of scope of actual Democracy in the U.S. being so drastically limited, the election system itself has been systematically captured by two parties that share a common interest: The preservation, protection and promotion of Capitalism. But you don’t have to take my word for it. American history is positively littered with examples of Politics being utilized to expand the wealth and power of the already-wealthy and powerful with no regard for the public welfare. This is arguably the most obvious evidence that Democracy and Capitalism are antithetical and cannot coexist in the same eco-political space.
Over the years that the U.S. has existed, people who got elected to public office have nearly always been those of repute; people with money and power. It has always been incredibly rare for an average citizen to win public office because of the nature of the American electoral system and the Capitalist forces that control it. This, in addition to the subsequent laws and regulations that have been both passed and struck down over the years, proves that due to Capitalism’s influence within the democratic process, Fascism is baked into the eco-political fabric of American Politics. Because the laws that govern this country were established by people of wealth and power, they have always existed to serve as a buffer and a perpetual mechanism to further the ambitions of those with wealth and power. Freedom, in this context, is actually defined by the parameters of the Capitalist system these forces own and control.
Due to the intense partisan divide in American Politics, the Constitution merely serves as a political football to be taken possession of and utilized according to the desires and ambitions of the party with the majority. Democrats pretend to be in opposition to their counterparts, while the Republicans operate more brazenly and openly by refusing to hold members of their party accountable for any wrongdoing while simultaneously passing laws that make criminal activity by the Rich and Powerful more legal. This is where the constitutional checks and balances fails.
Enter, the CGA: The Constitutional Guardians of America! This national civilian oversight body would be responsible for holding all wrongdoers from all branches of Government accountable when the constitutional checks and balances are compromised. Guardianship can be obtained through elections and are subject to State-sponsored term limits. Each Guardian represents their respective zip code and is allotted the professional rights and credentials to act as a public investigator.
Upon the conclusion of an investigation, the evidence is presented to a panel of Guardians that consists of those representative of the district in question. If a Congressional leader is investigated for a crime, the Guardians that make up the total zip codes within that official’s congressional district will be the panel that decides their fate. If the accused is a District Judge, the same standards apply. If it’s a sitting Senator, the panel is more expansive but the same standards are implemented, and so on.
Interstate coordination is essential when addressing matters of Federal Judges or a sitting President. Much like getting a new Constitutional Amendment adopted using the State-by-State ratification approach, in the case of a sitting President, each State’s total CGA contingency would be needed to certify either a Yay or Nay vote on an issue like a conviction after Impeachment. Normally, the House would introduce and pass Articles of Impeachment. But if there is sufficient evidence to impeach and the House fails to live up to their constitutional duties, the CGA can step in and take over the proceedings.
Only this time, the process is carried out by the voters themselves via their respective CGA representatives. Unlike the 2/3 majority needed to pass an Amendment, a simple majority would be needed to remove a sitting President, or a Congress member, or a Senator, or a Judge, Sheriff, Mayor, Governor etc. Upon the conclusion of such a proceeding, the CGA panel of the jurisdiction in question would schedule a new election date while the governing responsibilities temporarily fall to the the next in the chain of command. The CGA can also hold members of the media accountable for lying to the public, inciting violence, defamation, or slander. Investors, Business Owners and CEOs, Corporate Executives, Lobbyists, can all be held accountable through the CGA.
This new oversight entity is not only designed to hold misbehaving Government officials accountable, but also any and all Capitalist forces that put the public welfare at risk for profit. Capitalism corrupts Democracy, and this organization is an expansion of the system of checks and balances, serving as a fail-safe in the event the traditional checks and balances are compromised. It provides the Government, as well as the nation’s economic powers, incentive to do right by the public and keep their general welfare in mind when making their decisions.
Guardians would also have the right to obtain copies of, and review, any and all pieces of legislation proposed by their respective congressional and Senate representatives before they are introduced. This gives the general public a head start on any potential conflicts of interest or threats to the public welfare that may arise if such legislation is not properly scrutinized.
Lobbyists do not allow Government officials to read through the legislation they want them to vote on. They are often given a few hours at the most to vote in favor or against the bill, depending on how the lobbyists tell the representatives to vote. The CGAs involvement with the legislative process will prove invaluable to the preservation of Democracy and the assurance of the public welfare, in this case. When such events occur involving lobbyists and corporations, the CGA can investigate these people and hold them directly accountable for their acts of corruption, along with any and all Government officials who prove complicit in the designated activities. Not only does this help expand Democracy to the American people, it also muzzles the Capitalist forces that seek to subvert Democracy and impose Fascism on the public to increase their wealth and power.
The investigative and legal responsibilities and proceedings of the CGA encompass the entirety of the American economic and political landscape. It is run by the people, and as such can serve as a much more reliable form of checks and balances, due to the sheer number of people who will make up this organization. The only drawback here is that the CGA cannot propose legislation. Legislation is the job of Congress and The Senate. The CGA is more of a combination of Law Enforcement and Judiciary specifically for the purpose of overseeing and mediating the most consequential bodies of the American landscape.
In order to qualify for potential Guardianship, candidates must have working knowledge of the U.S. Constitution, as well as their respective state laws and regulations. They must be a legal resident of the United States, but not necessarily a legal citizen. Citizenry is required to hold public office for the Legislative, Judicial and Executive branches. If a candidate cannot display adequate working knowledge of the Constitution and their respective state laws and regulations, they will be disqualified and can only be considered for future Guardianship when they have successfully proven that their lack of knowledge has been remedied. This is what it takes to ensure Democracy’s survival.
“The price of Freedom is eternal vigilance.”
– Thomas Jefferson