Constitutional Amendments, Cont

Article excerpt

It's that time again. Whenever Republicans are in the ascendancy the nation is presented with a variety of proposed constitutional amendments. This season, they seek to mandate a balanced budget, impose term limits on Congress, champion school prayer and ban abortions and flag-burning. The same spirit that moves them to lift the oppressive burden of intrusive Big Government from the backs of a long-suffering citizenry also persuades them that same government must truncate political careers, enforce official worship in school, sanctify flags, superintend wombs and stop all spending except for corporate welfare and the military.

I can only applaud such civic-minded determination to improve our quality of life, and in that same spirit, offer some constitutional amendments of my own, all also designed to better our collective lot:

The Truth in Politics Amendment. This would forbid all expressions of hypocrisy and willful lying by elected officials. Certified liars and hypocrites would be subject to a short period of intense public odium and banned from holding public office for life. This really revolutionary idea should have been part of the Contract With America, but wasn't.

The Daddy Warbucks Amendment. On the assumption that those with inherited wealth are less likely to steal from the public purse, this would ban candidacies for major political offices - state and national - for all save second- or third-generation millionaires. It would also ban the candidacy of any millionaire who became wealthy from government contracts (The Perot Clause).

The National Political Pollution and Noise Suppression Amendment. The British have the right idea: They limit national election campaigns to four weeks. My amendment is more generous in light of the family entertainment values attending such events; it would limit presidential campaigns to three months prior to the November elections, and two months for any congressional campaign, with any state reserving the right to ban all presidential campaigning outright. …