Formerly the Thinking Catholic Strategic Center
And better than 90% of our Department Of the Interior is out of scope, extra-Constitutional and unnecessary. There is redundancy and duplication of effort with other federal level bureaus and departments, and wide areas of operation that would be better handled by states, Indian Reservations, local governments or the private sector.
First, to refresh our memories on how America works under the Constitution, let us recall Article I Section 1 of our Constitution:
Note that the first word in that sentence is "All". That means, no exceptions. No federal level laws may originate or be created other than by act of Congress.
Second, let us call to mind Article I Section 8 of our Constitution, which gives us the limited and enumerated legislative powers of our Congress - the actual scope and legislative limits set by the Constitution on the federal government. It says, to Senators and to Representatives, beyond these limits you may not go.
Keeping our Constitutional limitations in mind, lets look at the organization of our Department of the Interior.
Regarding the Bureau of Indian Affairs: American Indians should not need to be "taken care of" by any government bureaucracy. Reservations should be turned into more autonomous entities, like States, with their own tribal governments exercising their own legislating and taxing authority. They could model their governments after the existing States, with the development of their own Constitutions, recognizing that they are still within the boundaries of States, of which they are citizens. If they were wise, they would choose the Fair Tax over all other forms of taxation within the Reservations.
Existing federal government licensing, leasing and royalty arrangements with private mining, drilling, timber harvesting, etc., on Reservation land, should be turned over to tribal governments on the reservations. The Indians should be able to run the operations themselves, or license and lease the operations to private industry and collect royalties, at their option. Indian trust lands, resources, assets and anything else held in trust should be turned over to the tribal governments.
The bureau should be shut down as soon as practicality allows.
Regarding the Bureau of Land Management: The "Public Lands" owned by the federal government should be freely granted, given and deeded to the States and/or Indian Reservations in which it rests. The "Subsurface Mineral Estate" underlying federal, state and private lands should be freely granted, given and deeded to the states, reservations and private owners, within whose boundaries it rests.
The only lands the federal government should retain would be those lands needed and currently employed for the purposes of military bases, fascilities and live-fire ranges. Recreational activities currently regulated by the bureau could and should be regulated by the states and/or reservations. Similarly, activities such as logging, mining, fracking, etc., would be better managed by state and reservation government than by the the federal government.
BLM Office of Law Enforcement and Security is absolutely unnecessary. State, reservation and local governments can handle their own law enforcement and security.
If the states and/or reservations want to do it, they can continue to fund "renewable energy" projects like wind farms and biodegradable fuels at their own expense, and risk, win lose or draw.
Regarding the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement: Oil, natural gas and other minerals available beneath the waters of the continental shelf, and any waters within or surrounding America should be freely granted, given and deeded to the closest states within a 50 mile limit boundary around America. Only those ocean waters outside the 50 mile boundary should remain under the jurisdiction of BOEMRE. Licensing, leasing, enforcing and environmental protection authority for production of oil, natural gas and other minerals within the 50 mile limit should be turned over to the states.
Unemployed BOEMRE workers could apply for similar jobs with the states they have been empoverishing.
Regarding the Bureau of Reclamation: Federally constructed and maintained dams and hydro-electric plants should be freely granted, given and deeded to state and/or reservation governments.
Unemployed bureau workers could apply for similar jobs with the states or reservations.
Regarding the Federal Executive Boards: There is no excuse for the existence of this board. It is supposed to coordinate various outside Washington bureaucratic activities and increase efficiency. Bureaucracies government agencies are almost definitively inefficient; making a bureaucracy to increase the efficiency of other bureaucracies is just an exercise in bureaucratic stupidity.
Regarding the Interior Museum: The museum should be privatized or incorporated into the Smithsonian.
Regarding the National Park Service: All national parks should be freely granted, given and deeded to the states and/or Indian reservations in which they are located. There is nothing in Article 1 section 8 about any parks; President Theodore Roosevelt was way out of bounds here, regardless of any emotional attachments and heartfelt responsibility for majestic and scenic areas. The states, reservations and localities are far better suited to caring for, preserving and running natural treasures and parklands that exist within their own domains.
Any unemployed federal rangers or other federal employees may apply for similar jobs with the states or reservations.
Regarding the Office of Insular Affairs: This is the office that "administers" Island possessions such as American Samoa, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, US Virgin Islands, etc.
Regarding the Office of Surface Mining: Pursuant to the 1977 Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act, a per ton fee is collected from miners ostensibly to fund a trust that finances the following:
All of these are areas not only out of scope and outside the Constitutional limitations of the federal government, but they are beyond the competence level of the federal government to properly accomplish. This office should be closed and the responsibilities returned to where they originated, which would be the states, reservations, localities and private ownership where the mines reside, whether operational or closed. Local governments are more logically disposed to reclaim or restore previously mined lands than Washington DC, and they are more logically disposed to make their own regulations and operational guidelines than the federal government, win lose or draw.
Regarding the United States Fish and Wildlife Service: If fish, wildlife and habitat need to be "managed" at all, they do not need to be managed from Washington DC. The United States, individually, and the Indian Reservations are far better qualified and more properly inclined to properly manage their own fish, wildlife and habitat without outside assistance. Similarly, the States and the Reservations have no need for any federal law enforcement agencies to enforce fish, wildlife and habitat laws in local areas. That's what local law enforcement and fish and game wardens are for.
Local governments can invent their own bogus endangered species lists and micro-manage their citizenry accordingly, and can "reclaim" desert areas as "wetlands" prohibiting or controlling citizen use of them, at their own political risk, win lose or draw.
This service should be shut down.
Regarding the United States Geological Survey: The mission of this bureaucracy was accomplished after the Louisiana Purchase. It has no further reason to exist, and should be shut down.
The same way the Supreme Court did in Maybury v. Madison - by declaring it null, void, and no law, because it is a violation of the Constitution that the Congress, the President and the Court are all sworn to uphold and protect. If the Court can do it, so can the Presidency, and so can the Congress. There is nothing special about the Court in regards to guardianship of the Constitution. We have three co-equal branches of government; one to legislate, one to execute and one to adjudicate. None of them have any superior interpretive authority over the Constitution. All are sworn in their oaths of office to uphold and defend the Constitution as written. Here's what Jefferson thought about it:
But it's never been done that way, you say. Well, neither was Judicial Review ever done by the Court before Maybury v. Madison. That's what made it a legal precedent. There is absolutely no reason that the Presidency and the Congress, whether acting together or separately, could not establish the exact same precedent, of Congressional Review and/or Presidential Review, in setting aside un-Constitutional law as no law, from that day forward.
All that would be required would be a Congress and/or a President with the love of Constitution and the nerve to do it.
A very tall order, these days.
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The Brilliantly Conceived Organization of the USA; Vic Biorseth
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Respond to This Article Below The Last Comment
Date: Tue Oct 15 23:48:09 2013
From: Alice M.
What qualifies you to decide what's constitutional and what's not constitutional?
Date: Wed Oct 16 05:28:02 2013
From: Vic Biorseth
The exact same two things that qualified Abraham Lincoln (who never went to law school) to practice law:
Date: Wed Oct
From: Vic Biorseth
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The Purpose for this grouping of links is to show, first, the unconstitutional bureaucracies that need to be cut, and second, to highlight ideas toward restoring America toward her original Constitutional design.
The Cut The Spending Pages
Most of this site describes what is wrong; this one describes what to do about it. If we don't get rid of the extra-Constitutional entities we are over-paying for they will eventually economically strangle us to death as a nation.
Shut down unneeded bureaucracy, for budget’s sake. In the name of fiscal sanity, we need to shut down unneeded bureaucracy.
Cut USDA budget, in whole or in part. Is agriculture the constitutional business of the federal government?
Department of Commerce: Cut DOC budget, with a meat axe. Argument to cut DOC; in times like these, no bureaucracy is sacred.
Dept of Defense: Budget cuts here need to be of the scalpel variety. Defense cuts need to be done very carefully lest we harm national security.
Cut the ED budget, in whole. Is education the constitutional business of the federal government?
Argument against Public Education, which is, in fact, Government Indoctrination. Public Education equals State Indoctrination, pure and simple. Education is beyond the scope of government and not what our government is constituted to do.
Cut DOE budget, with a meat axe. Other than nuclear, how is any energy source the business of federal government?
Cut HHS budget, completely. How, exactly, is any Health and/or Human Services the Constitutional business of federal government?
Cut Social Security: Elimination of America’s Largest Budget Expenditure. How to Cut Social Security and begin the return to fiscal sanity.
Cut DHS budget, completely. Homeland Security is the proper domain of Defense, CIA and FBI. We should cut DHS completely.
Cut HUD budget, completely. How, exactly, is Housing or Urban Development the Constitutional business of federal government?
At this moment in time, most Constitutionalists would love to kill the IRS. How do you Kill the IRS? Fast-track and pass the Fair Tax. Very simple; nothing to it.
Cut DOJ budget, with a paring knife, but, radically. We need to cut DOJ unnecessary and unrelated functions to streamline the function of justice.
Cut DOL, completely. The Dept of Labor has no Constitutional reason to exist. We should cut DOL, which, like organized labor itself, was born of Marx's Communist Manifesto.
Cut EPA, completely. EPA has no Constitutional reason to exist. How, exactly, are the environment or natural resources the Constitutional business of the Federal Government?
Cut DOS (State Departement) budget excess fat. Cut DOS unnecessary functions and get back to State business.
Cut DOI (Department Of Interior) with a meat axe. We can eliminate ninety percent of Interior bureaucracy when we cut DOI.
Restoring our Treasury Department to its original purpose for being. On restoring our Treasury from Fascist Crony Capitalism, i.e., the Fed.
If we really need to cut spending, we should cut DOT with a meat axe. We should cut DOT and all these other bureaucracies that are regulating us to death.
Cut bureaucracy, but leave VA alone. In fact, we should build up the VA. In the aftermath of Marxocrat and Republicrat cuts to defense, both defense and the VA need new attention.
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