TANC: Roadmap to "Direct Democracy" Reform in America


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Overview presenation for TANC: Trans-American Alliance for a National Alliance **

Every American has a Constitutional Right to "Direct Democracy" -- Voting in "National Ballot Referendums" is Urgently Needed to Reform a Highly-Partisan, Dysfunctional, Divisive U.S. Government! ** Find out how an "Electorate Legislative Consortium," based on U.S. college campuses around the country, leads to "Legislative Reform By The People, For The People!" ** America Urgently Needs Domestic Socio-Economic REFORM and All Americans Hold the Keys to the Future -- not lobbyists and other Washington "influence peddlers." ** End Gov\'t Malfeasance and Insist on Long-Term Accountabiltiy Once the Trillion-Dollar Baillouts Have Been Doled Out to Corporate Banking/Financial Institutions, Insurance Companies and the U.S. Automakers.

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  • Hello, thank you for accessing this presentation for the TANC, the Trans-American Alliance for a National Consensus, and our goal of creating a “Direct Democracy” movement in America. Hi, my name is Michael and I’m Co-Founder and Excecutive Director of TANC, also referred to as “The Alliance.”
  • TANC: Roadmap to "Direct Democracy" Reform in America

    1. 1. Trans-American Alliance for a National Consensus Copyright © 2008 Trans-American Alliance for a National Consensus (TANC) & Michael A. Freeman ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Co-Founder/Executive Director: Michael A. Freeman
    2. 2. TANC: A Consensus-Building Legislature <ul><li>The Trans-American Alliance for a National Consensus ( TANC ) is a proposed, complementary fourth “ Electorate Branch ” of the U.S. Government to work in consort with the established federal Legislative, Executive and Judicial branches. </li></ul><ul><li>A decentralized local/regional “consensus legislative assembly,” supported through the auspices of colleges and universities all 50 states and outlying U.S. territories. </li></ul><ul><li>Scholars and student serve as “catalysts” in bringing together all key public/private segments of American society to reach nonpartisan consensus on a wide variety of domestic socio-economic legislation — effectively establishing a tireless “Ethical Conscience of Democracy.” </li></ul>
    3. 3. Constituent Groups Scholars Select Business Leaders Non-Profit Civic/ Activist Organizations Retired Civil Servants Think Tank Experts College Students Union Activists Municipal/State/ Federal Government Officials Civil Rights Activists Regional Economic Development Commissions Economists Association & Organization Leaders Trans-American Alliance for a National Consensus (TANC)
    4. 4. A Path to Legislative Accountability <ul><li>TANC assembly members set a proposed bill-making agenda, hold local and regional committee hearings and town hall meetings, and compile findings that allow a select group “National Executive Committee” members formally author federal legislative bills. </li></ul><ul><li>TANC -authored bills are submitted to both houses of Congress and the Executive branch to gain formal passive as federal legislation. </li></ul><ul><li>TANC’s mission is to heighten Accountability, Transparency, Consistency, and “Consensus Law-Making” to the federal legislative process. </li></ul>
    5. 5. Proposed Four Branches of U.S. Government Trans-American Alliance Branch (TAB) Legislative Branch Executive Branch Judicial Branch
    6. 6. NARA: A Call for Congressional Action <ul><li>The National Alliance Renewal Act (NARA) is a proposed bill and blueprint that establishes the Trans-American Alliance for a National Consensus (TANC) as a fourth “Electorate Branch” of the U.S. Government. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>As part of a proposed 28th Amendment to the Constitution, NARA seeks to establish a complementary but binding college-led consortium of society’s “best and brightest” to craft true “consensus” federal legislation. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Granting broad, equal powers on par with Congress and the Executive Branch to call for proposed rulemakings and the subsequent passage/enactment of Federal legislative bills. </li></ul></ul>
    7. 7. TANC’s Legislative Powers <ul><li>TANC -authored bills can gain passage through a vote of both houses of Congress and sign-off from the President of the United States, along with two-thirds (66%) majority vote of The Alliance membership internally. </li></ul><ul><li>TANC can seek to override Presidential vetoes or non-passage in Congress by: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Calling for a “ National Electorate Referendum” by a ttaching bill(s) to regularly scheduled primary or general elections across the U.S. – taking a bill directly to American voters. Bill gains final federal passage with 51% or more of popular vote. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Or an internal TANC “override vote” with at least two-thirds majority to gain final federal passage. </li></ul></ul>
    8. 8. Now is the Time for TANC … <ul><li>To break the 40-year pattern of partisanship and divisiveness between both political parties. </li></ul><ul><li>To mitigate and largely diffuse the influence of 36,000 registered lobbyists 1 , specifically some less-than-publicly conscience Special Interest Groups and Political Action Committees funneling money into the corridors of power in Washington. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>From 1998 to mid-2007, lobbyists poured in $20.01 billion for election funding and frequently swinging legislative initiatives 1 in their favor. </li></ul></ul>1 Senate Office of Public Records
    9. 9. A House Divided <ul><li>Partisan division and rancor underlies the gridlock, inconsistencies between both houses of Congress and the Executive branches. </li></ul><ul><li>Presidents typically promise “consensus” economic/social policies, but the Cabinet features party-favored appointees ― leaving policies to be shaped by a handful of connected “insiders.” </li></ul><ul><li>An “institutionalized process” requiring politicians to raise large sums of election campaign funds opens the door for “Big Business” lobbyists and other well-funded Special Interest Groups to have undue influence ― affecting the authorship of legislative bills. </li></ul>
    10. 10. Growing National Crises (I) Unemployment and Outsourcing of Jobs Record Federal Budget Deficits Subprime Mortgage Lending Crisis Healthcare Crisis Sagging U.S. Economy & Dollar
    11. 11. Growing National Crises (II) Federal Response to Natural Disasters Local/National Infrastructure Projects Revamping the Federal Tax Code Long-Term Solvency of Social Security Inequitable Trade Treaties
    12. 12. Growing National Crises (III) Energy Policy and Development of Alternative Energy Sources The Environment and Global Warming Immigration Policy Election Finance/Campaign Funding Reform
    13. 13. How Can We End the Gridlock? <ul><li>Energizing the nation’s college students and scholars will make them “conduits” to engage the rest of America’s key socio-economic constituent groups to meet for “consensus” political reform. </li></ul><ul><li>By holding committees and town hall meetings on a “localized” basis (for broad expert testimony and input), the compiled findings will allow national TANC legislation to better factor in the needs of municipal, county and state electorates. </li></ul><ul><li>With the specter of National Electorate Referendums or internal TANC assembly votes to override Presidential vetoes, both Congress and the Executive branches will be impelled to “accede to the will of the people.” </li></ul>
    14. 14. An Ultimate Extension of Democracy <ul><li>A binding legislative branch, TANC harnesses America’s “collective brain power” to establish a “true” national consensus law-making, governing body. </li></ul><ul><li>An independent, powerful “checks-and-balances” law-making authority ― an “Ethical Conscience of Democracy” to similarly energize and somewhat unburden our Legislative and Executive branches. </li></ul><ul><li>A hands-on role for American citizens, if needed, to vote in National Electorate Referendums — setting a new precedent in this country for “Direct Democracy” (long practiced in two-dozen nations internationally and 24 states here). </li></ul>
    15. 15. TANC’s Architecture <ul><li>Participation of leading public/private universities in the U.S. and outlying territories. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>America ranks with 30 of the 45 best universities in the world 1 . </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Managed daily by college students as “Delegates” and scholars as “Counsels.” </li></ul><ul><li>A representational percentage of America’s estimated 4,276 accredited colleges and programs 2 , divided into four U.S. regions (North, South, East, West). </li></ul>1 Academic Ranking of World Universities, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China 2 U.S. Department of Education
    16. 16. The Collegiate Structure Anywhere from 3 to 6 universities from each state, representing key metropolitan and regional/rural areas. Theological/ religious universities excluded to observe “Separation of Church and State.” Initially, up to 3% public/private universities and colleges invited to participate ― approximately 130 universities spread through 50 states and outlying territories.
    17. 17. The Organizational Structure Participating universities/colleges will also be chosen in terms of their schools of specialization (i.e., hospital & medical programs, law schools, business schools, engineering schools, etc.). The national structure of the Alliance will be broken down into four regions: North, South, East, and West ― representing universities in each of the 50 states and outlying territories.
    18. 18. Select TANC Legislative Committees <ul><li>Economic/Budget Policy and Appropriations Reform </li></ul><ul><li>Banking/Finance Regulatory Reform </li></ul><ul><li>Healthcare and Insurance Reform </li></ul><ul><li>Infrastructure/Transportation Reform </li></ul><ul><li>Social Security Solvency and Reform </li></ul><ul><li>Energy Development and Environmental Reform </li></ul><ul><li>Education Reform/National Test Competencies </li></ul><ul><li>Housing and Urban Affairs Reform </li></ul><ul><li>Small Business/Regional Economic Development </li></ul><ul><li>Labor Relations, Hiring Practices and Diversity in the Workplace </li></ul><ul><li>Free Trade and Commerce Reform </li></ul><ul><li>Government and Election Finance Reform </li></ul><ul><li>Science and Technology, Research and Development </li></ul><ul><li>Veteran Affairs </li></ul><ul><li>Armed Services/Homeland Security </li></ul>
    19. 19. TANC Committee Process <ul><li>Inaugural “National Alliance Convention” sets proposed bill-making agenda ― sometimes in concert with potential concurrent Senate and/or House hearings on the same bill(s). </li></ul><ul><li>Back in home states, individual university committees initiate separate local/regional discovery processes and set public hearings on specific bills ― soliciting key constituent group experts for comments. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Intra-state and regional meetings will also offer Webcast/Internet linking to share information and hearing testimony. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Local and regional committees will also monitor joint Congressional hearings via CSPAN television network coverage and Internet/Webcast links. </li></ul></ul>
    20. 20. <ul><li>Student “Delegates” and scholar “Counsels,” working through pre-designated local/regional Standing Committees, compile local/regional findings, preliminary recommendations and sectionalized language advocated for submittal toward national authorship of draft bill. </li></ul><ul><li>Delegates and counsels working in umbrella “ National Executive Committees ” will officially convene, either in-person at a pre-determined location or regularly conference via secure Internet/Webcast connections ― to jointly author final language of reform legislative bill. </li></ul><ul><li>The bill goes in front of the entire assembly of The Alliance for internal vote, with at least two-thirds “majority” (66%) of Delegates and Counsels votes required for passage, and for subsequent submittal to Congress and the President. </li></ul>TANC Committee Process (Cont’d)
    21. 21. TANC Legislative Process TANC Bill Submitted to Congress and the President for FINAL PASSAGE Local/Regional Committee Review BILL GOES TO FULL TANC ASSEMBLY VOTE Regional Committee Hearings DRAFT BILL READY FOR COMMITTEE REVIEW NATIONAL ALLIANCE CONFERENCE Identify and Set Bill-Making Agenda Assign National Delegates/Counsels For BILL AUTHORING Local Committee Hearings / Town Hall Meetings COMPILED FINDINGS
    22. 22. Legislative Process Executive Branch Legislative Branch Judicial Branch House of Representatives Senate Congress Other Specialized Courts District Courts Court of Appeals Supreme Court Exec. Branch Agencies Cabinet Vice President President Trans-American Alliance Branch (TAB)
    23. 23. TANC -Sponsored Bill Passage <ul><li>The bill is presented to the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate for their modifications and votes for passage/non-passage. </li></ul><ul><li>If both the Senate and House pass a TANC -sponsored bill, it would simply be enacted as legislation. </li></ul><ul><li>Should one or both houses of Congress reject a TANC -authored bill or the President vetoes it outright, a “National Electorate Referendum” can be called to attach the bill to a regularly-scheduled primary or general election calendar nationally. </li></ul><ul><li>If more than 51% of the electorate votes override a Presidential veto or Congressional no-votes, the bill will then be enacted into law. </li></ul>
    24. 24. Benefits of Consensus Legislation Longevity Transparency Accountability Unanimity Consistency
    25. 25. A Self-Sustaining Alliance <ul><li>Portions of existing federal, industry and non-profit funding for academic research can also be re-allocated for TANC -associated legislative bill-making, reform and research programs. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Federal funding for academic research and development totaled $83.3 billion in 2004 1 . </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>For example, federal funding earmarked for academic research in Healthcare/Medical studies can also be rewarded to TANC for things like Adult Stem-Cell research/legislative reform, National Healthcare, etc. </li></ul></ul>1 National Science Foundation (NSF)
    26. 26. A Restructuring of Existing Funding <ul><li>Restructuring of Federal Student Aid (FSA) loans or Pell Grants into “Working Grant” programs for enlisting student delegates to help reform and make our democracy more effective. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>$74.3 billion in student loans extended by FSA in 2007 1 . </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>$12.7 billion in Pell Grants allotted to students in 2007 1 , with Congressional bills proposing increasing grants up to $21 billion by 2012 . </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Re-allocation of grant funding, between $612 million to $1 billion annually for 51,000-plus TANC -enlisted students would account for little more than 4% to 5% of Pell Grants’ annual federal budgets. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Re-structuring of grant funding would really just mean that students are “working” to cover their tuition costs for serving TANC . </li></ul></ul>1 U.S. Department of Education, (White House, Office of Management and Budget, FY 2007 Budget)
    27. 27. Student “Delegates” Earn “Working Grants” to Cover Year’s Tuition <ul><li>Participating student delegates will be extended “Working Grants” ― out of a restructuring of Federal Student Aid grant and/or loans ― which students do not have to pay back. </li></ul><ul><li>Average public/private U.S. college tuition is roughly $12,000 annually 1 , which would serve as proposed maximum “Working Grant” compensation for one year of TANC service. </li></ul>
    28. 28. TANC Annual Student “Working Grant” Allotments Proposed Annual Maximum Limit / Working Grant $12,000 Percentage of Total Pell Grants ($12.7B in 2007) 3 5% Percentage of Total Federal Student Aid ($74.3B in 2007) 3 0.8% Projected Total of Annual Working Grants (1 YR Term) $612,000,000 Average Annual Tuition – Private Colleges 2 $16,000 Average Annual Tuition – Public Colleges 2 $6,000 Proposed TANC Yearly Enrollment (.003% of Estimated 17M Students) 1 51,000 1. U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics (2004 figures, Digest of Education Statistics, 2005) 2. The College Board (U.S. News & World Report, Oct. 23, 2007) 3. U.S. Department of Education ( White House, Office of Management and Budget, FY 2007 Budget)
    29. 29. Benefits for Students and their Families <ul><li>Average student and/or American family incurs up to $52,000 in debt (for four-year Bachelor programs only) 1 — giving TANC participants to shave close to half of their tuition costs for up to 2 years of legislative service. </li></ul><ul><li>Student delegates will earn school course credits and will be graded based on their participatory efforts in The Alliance . </li></ul><ul><li>1 The College Board, U.S. News & World Report (Oct. 23, 2007) </li></ul>
    30. 30. Benefits for U.S. Workforce <ul><li>A burgeoning pool of graduate/post-graduate students who have gained “real world” experience and knowledge from government, socio-economic and public/private sector legislative reforms. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Largely unburdened of tuition cost worries, more students gain access to a quality education and practical, real-world working experience. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Competitiveness ― a key measure of industrial/intellectual prowess (in engineering, technologies, sciences, etc.) ― will once again restore the American workforce to a world-leading position. </li></ul><ul><li>Business and public institutions will open up greater opportunities to interact with students and greatly improve their recruiting efforts with qualified candidates. </li></ul>
    31. 31. “ Bonus Grant” Compensation for TANC Scholar “Counsels” <ul><li>“ Bonus Grant” compensation can be simply re-allocated from existing government and private foundation grant programs already being extended to a variety of collegiate-led “research and development” activities (such as technology, economics, life/biotechnology sciences, etc.). </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Federal funding for academic research and development totaled $83.3 billion in 2004 1 . </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Private, industry and non-profit foundation grant funding totaled $219.2 billion in 2004 1 , portions of which could be allocated to “blind trusts” for TANC’s funding. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Although a formal budget has yet-to-be determined, given the regional/local scope of The Alliance , remaining portions of the budget will come from appropriations in the U.S. federal budget. </li></ul></ul>1 National Science Foundation (NSF)
    32. 32. TANC College Scholar &quot;Bonus Grant&quot; Compensation Estimates Total Allotted Bonus Compensation (1 st YR Term) $27,075,000 Average Annual Bonus (3 rd to 4 th YR Term – 12% Gross Income) $10,218 Total Bonus Compensation (3 rd to 4 th YR Term) $104,232,000 Average Annual Bonus (2 nd YR Term – 10% Gross Income) $7,884 Total Scholars Participating (.003% of 1.7M US Scholars) 1 5,100 Average Annual Salary – Public/Private (2007-2008) 1 $75,849 1. U.S. Department of Labor, Teachers-Postsecondary: Earnings (December 18, 2007) Average Annual Bonus (1 YR Term – 7% Gross Income) $5,309 Total Bonus Compensation (2 nd YR Term) $40,212,000
    33. 33. A Call for Passage <ul><li>Both houses of Congress and the Executive Branch need to join TANC in crafting “The National Alliance Reform Act” as part of a proposed 28th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Congress needs to expedite passage and formal establishment of the Trans-American Alliance for a National Consensus as an independent “fourth branch” of the U.S. government. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Congress and the Executive Branch need to form Joint Operating Committees to regularly work with TANC committees. </li></ul></ul>
    34. 34. TANC… An Electorate Legislator <ul><li>Instilling consistent, “consensus” policy- and bill-making. </li></ul><ul><li>A true “checks-and-balances” intermediary between the Executive, Legislative and Judicial branches. </li></ul><ul><li>A tireless collaborator and catalyst promoting government reform and social responsibility. </li></ul><ul><li>Gives the American citizens a truly “participatory” role in “Direct Democracy” — reflecting the needs of our electorate and positively affecting our country’s future direction and welfare. </li></ul>
    35. 35. A Self-Renewing Democracy <ul><li>TANC’s formation marks an “evolutionary” historical opportunity to shape a contemporary, modern American democracy: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>American citizens from every race, gender and socio-economic class can now feel a strong sense of empowerment and individual participation. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ensures domestic tranquility, equality and prosperity for all Americans ― not for a few privileged “insiders.” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Potentially frees politicians and a weary American electorate from the frequent rancor, partisanship, ideological battles and divisiveness of election campaigns. </li></ul></ul>
    36. 36. “The Will of the People” <ul><li>“ The people made the Constitution, and the people can unmake it. It is the creature of their own will, and lives by their own will.” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>― John Marshall (1755-1835) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>U.S. Supreme Court Justice, American Statesman and Constitutional Law Advocate </li></ul></ul>