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  #241  
Old 01-20-2016, 02:14 PM
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The United States and Monarchy

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Originally Posted by Roslyn View Post
I watched "The West Wing" for the first time last year. I have never studied American politics, formally or informally, and my knowledge of how the US presidential system operates is largely based on that show. Though I had previously been aware that the US President was a much more powerful person than heads of state under different forms of presidential system, the details were hazy.

The thing that struck me watching "The West Wing" - and please remember that this is my perception formed watching a TV show - is that the US seems to be run by one man and a cabinet of people who are appointed by the president but not elected by the people, and a lot of other unelected advisors. I find that very strange. I find the election process for president very confusing with its electoral colleges, and primaries and caucuses varying from state to state and stretching out over several months. It seems to be a hellishly expensive process and confuses me terribly.

I am used to a monarchy with a government run by elected representatives. Our head of state and her representative here are benign and their role is largely ceremonial. They don't interfere with the running of the country. I find it very difficult to wrap my brain around the concept of a US type presidential system, and I think it is unlikely to ever happen here. I am sure that we will always have a Westminster System.

The people who the President (elected by the people) to various positions in the cabinet, federal judges, ambassadors, Supreme Court Justices all have to get their appointments confirmed by the US Senate (elected by the people).

The US President is powerful but is still dependent on the Congress especially because the funding of the government.

The West Wing show was only focusing on the executive branch, there are 2 other branches in the legislative and judicial branches to have a series of checks and balances.

David Cameron wasn't directly elected by the people of the U.K. The Conservative party picked him and more people voted more seats to conservative MP. You are only voting for your MP seats. In the US, you vote for your house members, 2 senators and a President. That's 4 people who you elect versus 1 in the UK federal government wise.


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  #242  
Old 01-20-2016, 02:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skippyboo View Post
The people who the President (elected by the people) to various positions in the cabinet, federal judges, ambassadors, Supreme Court Justices all have to get their appointments confirmed by the US Senate (elected by the people).

The US President is powerful but is still dependent on the Congress especially because the funding of the government.

The West Wing show was only focusing on the executive branch, there are 2 other branches in the legislative and judicial branches to have a series of checks and balances.

David Cameron wasn't directly elected by the people of the U.K. The Conservative party picked him and more people voted more seats to conservative MP. You are only voting for your MP seats. In the US, you vote for your house members, 2 senators and a President. That's 4 people who you elect versus 1 in the UK federal government wise.


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The POTUS is not directly elected either. Americans do not vote for president; instead, they vote for presidential electors (the members of the Electoral College), who then elect the president.

In the UK, the people elect members of the House of Commons and also MEPs (in the European parliament elections) , local councillors, and members of the regional legislatures when applicable.

In Ireland, which is a parliamentary republic, the people elect directly the President (who is the ceremonial Head of State), the members of the lower House of Parliament, the members of the European Parliament, and local councillors. In Australia, which is a monarchy, the members of the House of Representatives and the federal Senate are both directly elected and there are direct elections also for state legislatures and local government.

Unfortunately, many Americans are "brainwashed" by the U.S school system into believing that American government is superior to parliamentary government. In fact, quite the opposite is true as the presidential system has an inherent, fumdamental flaw, namely a Head of Government, i.e the President, who has a fixed term of office and is not subject to responsibility (except via the impracticable institution of impreachment).
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  #243  
Old 01-20-2016, 03:37 PM
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IF only most schools even taught about other governmental systems, other than a brief mention. It's (The American government) not even talked about enough in schools to get near the point of 'brainwashing'.


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  #244  
Old 01-20-2016, 04:59 PM
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Do they even offer Civic classes these day in schools?

I know I took one when I was in the 7th grade.

Recently, I was talking to someone (can't remember the specifics) and their lack of basic understanding about the 3 branches of government was baffling. I even commented....what are they teaching in schools these days?

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Originally Posted by Mbruno View Post
The POTUS is not directly elected either. Americans do not vote for president; instead, they vote for presidential electors (the members of the Electoral College), who then elect the president.
Actually, we do. Yes, the electoral college does elect the president but more often than not, they vote the way the state goes. So if Candidate X wins a majority of the votes in the state of California, than conventional wisdom indicates that all of California's electoral votes should go to Candidate X. Most states are all or nothing states. There are a couple of states that base their electoral votes on percentages.

Basically our founding fathers in all of their wisdom (and I am not trying to be snarky they did some good things), didn't trust the common man. Hence the Electoral College.
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  #245  
Old 01-20-2016, 07:37 PM
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Nope Zonk they don't...not here. You can graduate blissfully unaware of how your state and federal government operate.

Based on direct comments from teachers (friends/relatives who teach in public schools) they are mostly teaching to pass the testing. If it's not on the mandated tests they probably won't be covering it.


Also will point out, for those who don't know, up until the (I forget which) Amendment (IIRC) Americans did not vote for president. They voted in local/state elections. The senators (2 I tihnk) of their state voted on behalf of the state, for president.




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  #246  
Old 01-20-2016, 08:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pranter View Post
You have to remember that a good many things you see from the American government are not according to the Constitution. Government has usurped more power than it was ever intended to, at least some things that are going on are in direct conflict to the Constitution.

A study of the Constitution might be less confusing as a means to understand how it's supposed to work.


LaRae
What exactly is going in direct conflict with the constitution? Remember - words can be interpreted differently by different people.
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  #247  
Old 01-20-2016, 09:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pranter View Post
Nope Zonk they don't...not here. You can graduate blissfully unaware of how your state and federal government operate.

Based on direct comments from teachers (friends/relatives who teach in public schools) they are mostly teaching to pass the testing. If it's not on the mandated tests they probably won't be covering it.


Also will point out, for those who don't know, up until the (I forget which) Amendment (IIRC) Americans did not vote for president. They voted in local/state elections. The senators (2 I tihnk) of their state voted on behalf of the state, for president.




LaRae
Not exactly correct - only white men could vote through the Civil War. Then legislation was enacted to include black men, but the populace of the US, especially in the South, had their own agenda about that. Women weren't allowed to vote until 1920, before that they could vote if they owned a substantial amount of land.
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  #248  
Old 01-21-2016, 04:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NotHRH View Post
Not exactly correct - only white men could vote through the Civil War. Then legislation was enacted to include black men, but the populace of the US, especially in the South, had their own agenda about that. Women weren't allowed to vote until 1920, before that they could vote if they owned a substantial amount of land.
Actually what you are talking about is a separate issue.


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  #249  
Old 01-21-2016, 04:58 PM
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Originally Posted by NotHRH View Post
What exactly is going in direct conflict with the constitution? Remember - words can be interpreted differently by different people.
Presidents circumventing the other two branches to try to enact laws etc.

If there is any interpreting to be done it should be done using the meanings of the men who wrote it. Not coming up with new meanings because it doesn't suit them.

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  #250  
Old 01-22-2016, 02:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pranter View Post
Presidents circumventing the other two branches to try to enact laws etc.

If there is any interpreting to be done it should be done using the meanings of the men who wrote it. Not coming up with new meanings because it doesn't suit them.

LaRae
Well none of those men is still living, but I am sure even back then there were slightly different interpretations between different "clicks" of those men. Even after that, there have been different interpretations and it has been the job of US Supreme Court, if called upon to do so, to interpret the US Constitution and laws and render decisions based upon their interpretation. Even then, usually based upon their political party affiliation, this government branch hardly hands decisions unanimously. My point - an interpretation of the US Constitution is as varied as the people interpreting it. :p:)
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  #251  
Old 01-22-2016, 04:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pranter View Post
Actually what you are talking about is a separate issue.


LaRae
How is it a separate issue - yes, people of the US have always voted. At the beginning of this country, usually only wealthy white men voted. This expanded over the years to include all white men who were literate (enough). Senators never voted in place of their constituents for their constituents. So no its not a separate issue - it is in reference to the issue you discussed in your original post. 🐣🐮🐴🐵
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  #252  
Old 01-22-2016, 08:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NotHRH View Post
Well none of those men is still living, but I am sure even back then there were slightly different interpretations between different "clicks" of those men. Even after that, there have been different interpretations and it has been the job of US Supreme Court, if called upon to do so, to interpret the US Constitution and laws and render decisions based upon their interpretation. Even then, usually based upon their political party affiliation, this government branch hardly hands decisions unanimously. My point - an interpretation of the US Constitution is as varied as the people interpreting it. :p:)
Um yeah they are since it's been done by more than one president in the past 50 years. The sitting president has done it most recently.


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  #253  
Old 01-22-2016, 08:41 AM
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Originally Posted by NotHRH View Post
How is it a separate issue - yes, people of the US have always voted. At the beginning of this country, usually only wealthy white men voted. This expanded over the years to include all white men who were literate (enough). Senators never voted in place of their constituents for their constituents. So no its not a separate issue - it is in reference to the issue you discussed in your original post. ��������

Article II of the Constitution reads in part: “Each state shall appoint, such manner as the legislature thereof may direct, a number of electors…” In other words, it is the state legislature and not the citizens of a particular state that determine which presidential candidate receives that state’s electoral votes. In the early decades of the country, several state legislatures actually appointed electors to the Electoral College, rather than hold popular elections in their state.

American adults living in states typically can vote, but they do not have a federally protected right to vote enshrined in the Constitution. States protect the right to vote to different degrees based on the state’s constitutional language and statutes. The federal government traditionally only steps in to prevent certain broad abuses, such as denying the right to vote based on race (15th Amendment), sex (19th Amendment), or age (26th Amendment).


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  #254  
Old 01-22-2016, 12:22 PM
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Let's get back on topic....the United States and the Monarchy.

Discussion regarding the US Constitution should be in context on how it would or would not work with a Monarchy.

Any and all off topic posts will be deleted without notice.
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  #255  
Old 01-26-2016, 04:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pranter View Post
Article II of the Constitution reads in part: “Each state shall appoint, such manner as the legislature thereof may direct, a number of electors…” In other words, it is the state legislature and not the citizens of a particular state that determine which presidential candidate receives that state’s electoral votes. In the early decades of the country, several state legislatures actually appointed electors to the Electoral College, rather than hold popular elections in their state.

American adults living in states typically can vote, but they do not have a federally protected right to vote enshrined in the Constitution. States protect the right to vote to different degrees based on the state’s constitutional language and statutes. The federal government traditionally only steps in to prevent certain broad abuses, such as denying the right to vote based on race (15th Amendment), sex (19th Amendment), or age (26th Amendment).


LaRae
Honestly, the "electors" echo the electoral college, hence the name, and the reason for the amendments. Anyway, 'nuff said about that. No, our Constitution was written to rid the colonies of the British monarchy, and specifically, the British monarch, who had more governmental authority at that time. The Boston Tea Party was very mild compared to today's manner of government opposition. Rioting, theft, and chaos seem to be the way certain groups handle their anger. So the ability for those of different races being represented in and elected to various offices/positions in the US government goes very far in maintaining civil obedience. Electing a royal family does nothing for progression of the US, but then again not much does any more. Society as a whole is in the verge of serious castrophe - just sayin.' 🌏🌎🌍
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  #256  
Old 02-15-2016, 07:47 PM
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The good thing about the US federal government is that it has 3 branches: executive (the president), legislative (Congress) and judicial (the Supreme Court). They all somewhat keep each other in check, particularly when a crazy radical takes over one of the branches (usually the executive or legislative).


I agree with mbruno that a presidential system isn't good in that it merges a head of state job (which doesn't need to be political) with a head of government job (which is political). I see no reason to do that. We should eliminate the Vice President job (which is just a ceremonial job, mostly, and serves no purpose except to vote on ties in the Senate) and create a separate head of state job instead.


And whatever the pros or cons of a presidential/US-style government versus a Westminster system, the US method sure isn't working these days. The US is going to pot in part because of its government.
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  #257  
Old 02-15-2016, 07:53 PM
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And since I can't edit my prior post/rambling:








I find a Westminster system frightening because it seems to give one party full control over the country. If we had a system like that in the US, we'd need to find a way to block the crazies who could take over government; currently, we block the crazies by having 3 branches of government and non-overlapping terms of their members. If we had a Westminster system and a monarchy, we'd need a king or queen who would have real power to block the crazies from taking action: like a constitutional referee or umpire, with the ability to veto acts that were unconstitutional, perhaps following the advice of neutral experts. I'd guess that Queen Elizabeth has such powers in theory, but she never uses them.
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  #258  
Old 02-15-2016, 08:02 PM
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We also have three three branches of government in a Westminster system, you know. I could say more will leave that to someone with a finer grasp of the workings of government.

What I will say though is that there is one very good reason for you to have a Vice-President: so we can have Veep!
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  #259  
Old 02-15-2016, 08:10 PM
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Originally Posted by CSENYC View Post
The good thing about the US federal government is that it has 3 branches: executive (the president), legislative (Congress) and judicial (the Supreme Court). They all somewhat keep each other in check, particularly when a crazy radical takes over one of the branches (usually the executive or legislative).


I agree with mbruno that a presidential system isn't good in that it merges a head of state job (which doesn't need to be political) with a head of government job (which is political). I see no reason to do that. We should eliminate the Vice President job (which is just a ceremonial job, mostly, and serves no purpose except to vote on ties in the Senate) and create a separate head of state job instead.


And whatever the pros or cons of a presidential/US-style government versus a Westminster system, the US method sure isn't working these days. The US is going to pot in part because of its government.
Actually, our nation has the strongest economy in the world. We came out of the recession well, and the things aren't working nonsense is from a political party that isn't working and has candidates they are lunatics. But we always right ourselves. Frankly, the Head of State should be it's President, not some show piece, without power. And as I look at countries, as Australia, Canada etc., who have a Head of State (the Queen) who is a foreigner, makes no sense.
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  #260  
Old 02-15-2016, 08:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CSENYC View Post
The good thing about the US federal government is that it has 3 branches: executive (the president), legislative (Congress) and judicial (the Supreme Court). They all somewhat keep each other in check, particularly when a crazy radical takes over one of the branches (usually the executive or legislative).


I agree with mbruno that a presidential system isn't good in that it merges a head of state job (which doesn't need to be political) with a head of government job (which is political). I see no reason to do that. We should eliminate the Vice President job (which is just a ceremonial job, mostly, and serves no purpose except to vote on ties in the Senate) and create a separate head of state job instead.


And whatever the pros or cons of a presidential/US-style government versus a Westminster system, the US method sure isn't working these days. The US is going to pot in part because of its government.
I disagree with your 2nd paragraph. The US is going to pot because of people within the US knowing how to play the welfare (hand-out) system. Also, the US has too many people coming into the country expecting our government to care of them for the rest of their lives. Yes, the US govt sticks their nose into other countries' business entirely too much, but many other governments in the world EXPECT a handout from tax-paying US citizens courtesy of the govt. We can barely take care of citizens of this country much less everybody in the rest of the world and want my govt to mind it's own business.
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