[Thirty-Seven Points of Simplicity and Transparency in the Proposed Rewrite of the Connecticut Constitution and General Laws]
In this proposed rewrite, apart from overall simplification, at least thirty-seven specific strategic changes are made to the existing constitution and laws. They reflect a deep structural change in how politics is conducted, aiming for the honest, transparent, accountable, and simple.
1] Preamble: It is rooted in the six pillars of honest politics and an explicit definition of localized and limited government.
2] Section 1:1: The language of the image of God and priority of protecting human life is both a statement of conviction and an invitation to debate what “entire natural duration” means.
3] Sections 1:2 and 11:1: There is the explicit and inclusive goal of man and woman in marriage, and the presence of fathers in the lives of their children.
4] Section 1:4: Religious liberty as the first and defining freedom.
5] Section 1:6: There is the specific itemization of life, liberty and property as protected by due process of law.
6] Section 2:2: Lawmaking is via supermajority and without amendment, regulations serve and do not supersede any law, and policy directives are limited to 100 words.
7] Section 2:3: There is limited judicial purview.
8] Section 3:2: There is a definition of the purpose for taxation rooted only in productive economic activity.
9] Sections 3:5 and 3:6: There is a change in the number of senators and representatives, for the sake of symmetry and honestly defined districts.
10] Sections 3:13, 9:16 and 9:17: There is ubiquity of transparency in all elements of governance, with open meetings and media access central.
11] Section 4:2: The Governor and Lieutenant Governor are elected to office as a team, and policy directives are limited to 100 words.
12] Section 4:11: The Committee on Political Ideas (COPI) serves as a public airing for debated issues ahead of and in service to legislative consideration.
13] Sections 5:4 and 5:5: The introduction of the Common Courts is for locally judged and non-felonious matters, greatly alleviating the formal court system.
14] Section 5:7: There are genuinely speedy trials.
15] Section 5:13: There is the inclusive freedom to designate the power of attorney.
16] Section 6:5: There is the right for citizens to initiate statewide ballot referenda questions.
17] Section 7:16: There is no limit on political monies w/concurrent transparency and accountability.
18] Section 9:1: There is the goal in writing law to be simultaneously minimalist and comprehensive.
19] Section 9:2: There is gender inclusivity and simplicity in the use of the male pronoun.
20] Section 9:5: There is an explicit definition of privacy rights.
21] Section 9:12: There is a simplicity in defining business law through “open contracts”.
22] Section 9:13: There is a transparency in relationship between public and private concerns for public officials.
23] Section 9:15: All citizens are free to lobby public officials as individuals or as groups without the need to register or be licensed.
24] Sections 9:18 and 9:19: There is an explicit limit on, and the nature of, taxes collectable by the state.
25] Section 9:22: There is a rewrite of the law regarding recognized Indian tribes, making it more equal.
26] Section 10: Some state departments are condensed and/or somewhat repurposed.
27] Section 10:4: Directives by heads of state departments are limited to 100 words.
28] Sections 10:7 and 10:17: Alternatives to legalized indemnification are introduced.
29] Section 11:4: Divorce laws are tightened.
30] Section 11:5: Fathers are responsible for the well-being of their unborn children.
31] Section 10:10: The drinking age and drug use are redefined, as are abortion restrictions; and all food, medicine and clothing require truth in advertising as to natural, synthetic and/or GMO content.
32] Section 10:14: The Department of Social Services is constituted as in service to the family.
33] Section 10:17: There are strict parameters for provisional driver’s licenses, ages 17-21, and strict and immediate consequences for drunk driving; there is primacy of freedom and responsibilities for parents in the education of their children, and free public education is locally funded.
34] Section 10:18: Public education is funded solely through the local municipalities.
35] Section 10:19: There is the immediate segregation for those who commit or seek to commit sexual assault in prison.
36] Section 10:23: All state employees are free to be hired as employees or as sub-contractors.
37] Section 12:9: Government charity exists only at the municipal level.
The means to accomplish such a rewrite is via a Constitutional Convention and subsequent ratification of the voters. And given the dramatic need for and nature of this rewrite, the Convention needs to adopt a segue plan for all state employees whose present jobs become no longer necessary. They need to have a substantial enough period of time to segue into retirement or private employment, ensuring no undue burden on their families, and indeed, in the goal of greater prosperity for them and all law-abiding people in the State.
These same realities, as applicable, are also seen in the rewrite of the federal constitution and laws.
[The rest of this proposed revision is available in the book, The Six Pillars of Honest Politics, available at www.johnrankinbooks.com]