Are you sure you want to delete this post?
RanmaMOJ Wrote: This law is not one that has been proposed before Congress (of either the US or States) or even local city/county governments, but it is one I think they should consider... The law would in essence be: All laws, in the United States, written or passed from the day this law goes into affect are to be written so that they can be understood by the average high school graduate.
I don't necessarily disagree that some of our laws are written far too complexly, but I don't know if writing them so an average high school student can understand them takes into account the complexities of how a spending bill becomes a law in the first place. It's very easy to say that we should write bills in layman's terms, but it's far more difficult to make that a reality.
The first thing we must discuss is that the average law is nowhere near 1,000 pages long. The average bill that becomes law clocks in at 15.2 pages. Only bills that involve spending--like the budget, the Farm Bill, Health Care Reform, etc. clock in at over 1,000 pages because they are genuinely complex things that affect a wide swath of the economy. Spending bills and those other big ticket items also have so many pages because of the Amendments that are passed in them that are meant to guarantee a certain members support. We may not like that, but that's how our Federal Government has done things for 200 plus years and I do not see that changing anytime soon.
Once we get over the fact that the average bill is nowhere near 1,000 pages, we must determine the best way forward to shorten our major spending bills. Once broad guidelines are introduced into both houses of Congress, they go to committee. That's where the real rubber hits the road and a one page guideline becomes a 1,000 page bill. It becomes that long because writing a spending bill for a nation of 300 million people is extremely complex, especially in America. A spending law in divided Government is even more difficult to get through both houses and onto the Presidents desk for signature.
The other elephant in the room (pun intended--they are typically physically in the room writing these bills) are the lobbying firms who want to make sure their big companies are taken care of. We may not like that, but we have to accept the fact that lobbying reform is going nowhere fast because both sides of the aisle are in on it. We can thank the Supreme Court for solidifying that fact with their horrendous Citizens United ruling which made the McCain–Feingold Act
obsolete. If we want shorter spending bills, we need to find a way to get multinational corporations out of our legislative bargaining sessions. Not just that, but figure out a way to do it that the Supreme Court won't immediately make obsolete once again.
I've gotten a little off topic here, but I feel it's important to look at the cause of the problem so we can begin to find a solution to the problem. When and if we ever are able to get big money out of politics is when we will begin to write laws that are geared towards the average citizen once again. Up and until then, we will continue to see spending bills that run into the thousands of pages.