This BP — Transocean spill is not just another mess. This spill is historic and calls for a response in historic terms. It also must be seen in context. That context and response is what this post is about. The liquid nature of the spill goes with the crisis of unstructured flow of migrants who are joined by the desire to make money flow around for no real reason. This joins with the government forcing racial groups to flow together in no structured way. This goes with an economy designed to liquidate all wealth and punish the kinds of wealth that does not flow quickly. In may ways this spill symbolizes our whole set of social disorders.
We are facing the largest oil spill in US history. We had the failed Times Square bombing, the underwear bomber, the Fort Hood shooting and we have hundreds of thousands of people protesting forcefully to proclaim that one should be able to stay here as long as one wants without documentation. Not all the Arizona law protesters want to say that but hundreds of thousands do. We have people in our congress advocating an unconstitutional ex post facto law against BP. Here again the nuance is that if Congress were saying they would issue letters of Marque and Reprisal against BP if they do not adequately deal with the spill I would not object (Britain would but not I). Our debt to revenue ratio is outrageously high and people largely believe we should all spend more to stimulate the economy. We are still involved in two foreign wars. In my opinions all the things I mentioned above are only minor symptoms of the disease afflicting our society. We are a country in crisis, deep and serious crisis.
I am different from most of those who are likely to read this blog as American citizens in that I support and advocate radical constitutional change. I advocate change which is revolutionary — although I am willing to see that change come in the following Constitutional form: “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.” This quote makes up most of Article V (Article Five) of the Constitution.
The part I did not include is the first few words reproduced here and now ” 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)” the words in parentheses are the words at the start of my quote above. All amendments in US history have been passed through the houses of congress and then ratified by the States. However, a constitutional convention summoned by two-thirds of the States and ratified by three-fourths of the States could effect total transformation of the country as long as every State retains equal votes in the Senate and the entirely new Constitution would be a formal and legal continuity of our current regime. The only role of Congress in this second path would be to choose whether State legislatures or State conventions should ratify the larger convention. In the real world if a convention had been called then force of arms would be justified if (by no means certain) a Congress refused to act to make this one choice. Thus if three-fourths of the states can be convinced of the need for radical change then we can have it. And we do need radical change. It is time for our society to evolve. I have outlined the ideas for a new regime elsewhere in this blog.
We need to create a system which will value conservation, preservation, familial wealth, nature, honor and recognize that neither big business nor bureaucracy has all the answers and yet both have a role to play. The risks these spills and other things like the war on terror relate to or not adequately addressed in an eight year presidential administration. We need the kinds of changes we are very far from adopting so far. The total destruction of our society is what is likely if we continue to follow the path we have been following . As our society becomes more dysfunctional the rate of decay will increase. Making the right changes now will be very hard but making them later will be much harder.
We are partly destroying and may be largely destroying an estuary which is the product of processes ranging in millions, thousands and hundreds of years. We are doing this in days and months. We need a government with a loner term view of things. However, not just any old thing will do. We need to make the right changes. I have tried to outline those changes elsewhere in this blog. But we will not have many more chances for good change. It will not be long before any effort we make will be the kind of desperate and frenzied reaction that seldom works out well — to say the least. This may be our last chance to create change that is rational, wise and measured.
So let us consider really changing the government. We have a choice now. That will not be true forever.