Lloyd Bailey: Farm bill is unconstitutional

Published: Friday, July 19, 2013 at 4:04 p.m.
Last Modified: Friday, July 19, 2013 at 4:04 p.m.

Too often congressmen with stated good intentions violate their oath by voting for a bill that is not authorized in Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution. Their justification is that it will reduce spending and improve the program.

While a reduction in federal spending is desirable, you cannot trust the Executive Branch under either party to enforce that modification. Our cowardly, craven and pusillanimous Congress is failing to exercise its constitutional check on the Executive Branch.

When a relatively constitutional congressman violates the Constitution only 10 to 15 percent of the time, he still violates his oath 100 percent on principle and compromises his honor. The more often these violations occur, the easier it is to repeat this dishonest behavior.

I remember one of Neoconservative Congressman Cliff Stearns’ apologists writing that “Stearns obeys the constitution virtually all of the time.” Should anyone be comfortable with their spouse keeping the oath of matrimony sacred virtually all of the time?

There is no such thing as being “a little pregnant” or partially honest! We must encourage that our elected officials raise the bar of integrity, morality and virtue in Congress by strict obedience to their sacred oath to the Constitution.

In 1877, James Garfield had this to say regarding the behavior of Congress: “Now more than ever the people are responsible for the character of their Congress. If that body be ignorant, reckless, and corrupt, it is because the people tolerate ignorance, recklessness, and corruption. If it be intelligent, brave, and pure, it is because the people demand these high qualities to represent them in the national legislature. . . . [I]f the next centennial does not find us a great nation . . . it will be because those who represent the enterprise, the culture, and the morality of the nation do not aid in controlling the political forces.”

There is no constitutional justification for the federal government to be involved in agriculture or food stamps. The Department of Agriculture was illegally established under the despotic President Lincoln. The farm bill achieves monopolistic capitalism and corporate wealth redistribution! The farm bill benefits the big farmers at the expense of the small farmers.

Ironically, Food stamps, a.k.a. welfare, are one of the many reasons that farmers cannot get domestic field labor. Why would anyone work for money when the government is willing to steal it from the middle class and give it away?

We must demand our congressman (employee) never vote in favor of any bill that is not specifically authorized by the Constitution. Article I, Section 8 clearly states that Congress has the authority “To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers, and all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any Department or Officer thereof.” There are no implied powers in the Constitution, as John Marshall foolishly wrote.

As Calvin Coolidge observed, “It is much more important to kill bad bills than to pass good bills."

While we can only influence or change our representative in Congress, we can educate citizens in other districts on the checks and balances of our Constitutional Compound Republic. God save our Republic!

Lloyd Bailey lives in Gainesville.

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