If you agree that the United States of America is, financially, like a runaway train heading towards the washed out bridge, now you can do something about it.
Send a copy of this amendment to your state legislators:
(You can find out your legislators' addresses and emais via http://www.votesmart.org/official_state.php link.
The Limitations Amendment:
Limits on financial excesses:
Section 1: Balanced budget amendment: Part 1. Prior to each fiscal year, the Congress shall adopt a statement of receipts and outlays for that year in which total outlays are no greater than total receipts. The Congress may amend such statement provided revised outlays are not greater than revised receipts. The Congress and the President shall ensure that actual outlays do not exceed the outlays set forth in such statement. Part 2. Total receipts for any fiscal year set forth in the statement adopted pursuant to this article shall not increase by a rate greater than the rate of increase in national income in the last calendar year ending before such fiscal year, unless a majority of the whole number of both Houses of Congress shall have passed a bill directed solely to approving specific additional receipts and such bill has become law.. Part 3. The Congress may not require that the states engage in additional activities without compensation equal to the additional costs. Part 4. Total receipts shall include all receipts of the United States except those derived from borrowing and total outlays shall include all outlays of the United States, including interest payments on national debt, Social Security payments, costs of top secret programs, payments to states and all other obligations, implied and enumerated, of these United States. Part 5. The Congress may waive the provisions of this article, providing that a formal, Congressional declaration of war is in effect. The Congress may only do this for a maximum of 5 years out of every twenty years. Part 6. This article shall take effect for the second fiscal year beginning after its ratification.Section 2. Debt limit: The federal government must never accrue a national debt greater than 3% of the entire nation's GDP, using the same accounting principles used in fiscal year 2008. If the amount of debt at the time of this amendment's passage is greater than 3%, the congress shall bring the total debt to the accepted level within 7 years.Section 3. . Income Tax LimitFederal income tax may never exceed 15% of an individual's total income, and may never exceed 20% of a corporation's income.Limits on Congressional PowerSection 4. Term limits: United States Congress persons (Representatives and Senators) may not serve more than 15 years combined total years in Congress, contiguous or not, in either Senate or House. If a currently elected official has been in office for greater than 15 years at the time of this passage, that congress person does not need to resign, but is not eligible to run for either House of Representatives or Senate again. Supreme Court justices shall be appointed for 15 year terms. If a Supreme Court justice has been holding his or her position for greater than 15 years, they must resign their justice position on a schedule which allows appointment of a new Supreme Court Justice every five years. Thus, the longest sitting justice shall resign within five years, and the next longest sitting justice shall resign in ten years, and so on, beginning from the year of passage of this amendment.Section 5: All legislation to be brought before either house of congress for consideration and passage into law, must be written by duly elected congresspersons, or their immediate staff. Legislation written by non-governmental advisers, consultants, lobbyists or other non-elected officials may not be brought to a vote. The Congress shall deem an appropriate method for monitoring and determining authorship of legislation.Section 6: When bills are being considered for passage into laws, only the bill in question may be considered. Amendments, earmarks, riders, addenda and unrelated additions to a bill shall render that bill ineligible for vote or passage.Section 7: The Congress of the United States is stripped of its power to set their own pay, remuneration, or income as paid by the federal government. Senators and representatives shall be paid, and receive benefits, according to a scale set by 2/3 of the state legislatures; if 2/3 of the states cannot agree on the remuneration, then Congress shall be paid according to the GS scale. Unless otherwise mandated by 2/3 of state legislatures, an elected federal congress person shall be paid at the level of GS 15 Step 1. Any increase in pay for the congress persons beyond the pre-established GS scale must be approved by 2/3 of state legislatures. Regardless of how congress persons' pay is set, congress persons' benefits are commensurate with those of the GS scale, and shall not be worth more than the benefits of any other government employee in the GS scale. Congress shall not change or alter the GS scale if it in any way serves to increase their pay, income, benefits or remuneration as paid by the federal government.Limits on influencing CongressSection 8. All costs of campaigning, soliciting votes or running for either house of Congress and the President of the United States shall be paid for by the federal or state governments. The amount is to be set by Congress; however, the total expense for any political campaign at the national level is not to exceed 1/10,000 of 1% of the GDP as calculated by 2008 methods. Each of the candidates for Congress or the presidency, as determined by each state’s rules, shall be eligible for an equal proportion of the allotted money, regardless of political party affiliation. There need not be any change in how individual states determine primary elections in their states, except that the cost of the primary campaigns shall be borne by the government. At no time may any individual who is running for national office, including primary and preliminary elections, accepts campaign contributions of any sort. Accepting campaign contributions renders a candidate ineligible for elected office at the national level. At no time may any organization, individual or group spend money in an effort to affect the outcome of an election for a president or congressperson, both House and Senate, at the primary or national level. If, at the time of the passage of this amendment, a sitting congress person or president has unspent campaign funds, those funds may be returned to their donors, donated to the US government general fund, or donated to a non-profit organization of his or her choice.Section 9. Lobbying, influencing or otherwise persuading congress , by anyone or entity, other than the elected officials' constituency or prospective elected official's constituency, is prohibited.Section 10. A corporation, organization, committee, institution or other group is not equivalent to a citizen of these United States. A corporate, or other, entity does not enjoy the same rights as individuals under the Constitution of the United States. It shall be up to the individual states to determine the degree of protection a corporation or other entity shall enjoy.Section 11. Money is not speech. Hence, spending money to influence policy makers, elected officials or legislators is not protected speech under this constitution.Section 12. This amendment may not be repealed, altered or changed by a vote of both houses of Congress, but only by a vote of 3/4 of the legislatures of the states. This amendment may not be changed by the state legislatures until twenty years after it has passed.