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So where will any money come from ?? Aren't we broke !!!


philbytx

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$8,000,000 appropriated!!

 

 

 

Commission to Study Reparation Proposals for African-Americans Act (Introduced in House)

 

HR 40 IH

 

111th CONGRESS

 

1st Session

 

H. R. 40

 

To acknowledge the fundamental injustice, cruelty, brutality, and inhumanity of slavery in the United States and the 13 American colonies between 1619 and 1865 and to establish a commission to examine the institution of slavery, subsequently de jure and de facto racial and economic discrimination against African-Americans, and the impact of these forces on living African-Americans, to make recommendations to the Congress on appropriate remedies, and for other purposes.

 

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

 

January 6, 2009

Mr. CONYERS (for himself and Mr. SCOTT of Virginia) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary

 

 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

A BILL

 

To acknowledge the fundamental injustice, cruelty, brutality, and inhumanity of slavery in the United States and the 13 American colonies between 1619 and 1865 and to establish a commission to examine the institution of slavery, subsequently de jure and de facto racial and economic discrimination against African-Americans, and the impact of these forces on living African-Americans, to make recommendations to the Congress on appropriate remedies, and for other purposes.

 

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

 

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

This Act may be cited as the `Commission to Study Reparation Proposals for African-Americans Act'.

 

SEC. 2. FINDINGS AND PURPOSE.

(a) Findings- The Congress finds that--

 

(1) approximately 4,000,000 Africans and their descendants were enslaved in the United States and colonies that became the United States from 1619 to 1865;

 

(2) the institution of slavery was constitutionally and statutorily sanctioned by the Government of the United States from 1789 through 1865;

 

(3) the slavery that flourished in the United States constituted an immoral and inhumane deprivation of Africans' life, liberty, African citizenship rights, and cultural heritage, and denied them the fruits of their own labor; and

 

(4) sufficient inquiry has not been made into the effects of the institution of slavery on living African-Americans and society in the United States.

 

(b) Purpose- The purpose of this Act is to establish a commission to--

 

(1) examine the institution of slavery which existed from 1619 through 1865 within the United States and the colonies that became the United States, including the extent to which the Federal and State Governments constitutionally and statutorily supported the institution of slavery;

 

(2) examine de jure and de facto discrimination against freed slaves and their descendants from the end of the Civil War to the present, including economic, political, and social discrimination;

 

(3) examine the lingering negative effects of the institution of slavery and the discrimination described in paragraph (2) on living African-Americans and on society in the United States;

 

(4) recommend appropriate ways to educate the American public of the Commission's findings;

 

(5) recommend appropriate remedies in consideration of the Commission's findings on the matters described in paragraphs (1) and (2); and

 

(6) submit to the Congress the results of such examination, together with such recommendations.

 

SEC. 3. ESTABLISHMENT AND DUTIES.

(a) Establishment- There is established the Commission to Study Reparation Proposals for African-Americans (hereinafter in this Act referred to as the `Commission').

 

(b) Duties- The Commission shall perform the following duties:

 

(1) Examine the institution of slavery which existed within the United States and the colonies that became the United States from 1619 through 1865. The Commission's examination shall include an examination of--

 

(A) the capture and procurement of Africans;

 

(B) the transport of Africans to the United States and the colonies that became the United States for the purpose of enslavement, including their treatment during transport;

 

© the sale and acquisition of Africans as chattel property in interstate and instrastate commerce; and

 

(D) the treatment of African slaves in the colonies and the United States, including the deprivation of their freedom, exploitation of their labor, and destruction of their culture, language, religion, and families.

 

(2) Examine the extent to which the Federal and State governments of the United States supported the institution of slavery in constitutional and statutory provisions, including the extent to which such governments prevented, opposed, or restricted efforts of freed African slaves to repatriate to their homeland.

 

(3) Examine Federal and State laws that discriminated against freed African slaves and their descendants during the period between the end of the Civil War and the present.

 

(4) Examine other forms of discrimination in the public and private sectors against freed African slaves and their descendants during the period between the end of the Civil War and the present.

 

(5) Examine the lingering negative effects of the institution of slavery and the matters described in paragraphs (1), (2), (3), and (4) on living African-Americans and on society in the United States.

 

(6) Recommend appropriate ways to educate the American public of the Commission's findings.

 

(7) Recommend appropriate remedies in consideration of the Commission's findings on the matters described in paragraphs (1), (2), (3), and (4). In making such recommendations, the Commission shall address among other issues, the following questions:

 

(A) Whether the Government of the United States should offer a formal apology on behalf of the people of the United States for the perpetration of gross human rights violations on African slaves and their descendants.

 

(B) Whether African-Americans still suffer from the lingering effects of the matters described in paragraphs (1), (2), (3), and (4).

 

© Whether, in consideration of the Commission's findings, any form of compensation to the descendants of African slaves is warranted.

 

(D) If the Commission finds that such compensation is warranted, what should be the amount of compensation, what form of compensation should be awarded, and who should be eligible for such compensation.

 

© Report to Congress- The Commission shall submit a written report of its findings and recommendations to the Congress not later than the date which is one year after the date of the first meeting of the Commission held pursuant to section 4©.

 

SEC. 4. MEMBERSHIP.

(a) Number and Appointment- (1) The Commission shall be composed of 7 members, who shall be appointed, within 90 days after the date of enactment of this Act, as follows:

 

(A) Three members shall be appointed by the President.

 

(B) Three members shall be appointed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives.

 

© One member shall be appointed by the President pro tempore of the Senate.

 

(2) All members of the Commission shall be persons who are especially qualified to serve on the Commission by virtue of their education, training, or experience, particularly in the field of African-American studies.

 

(b) Terms- The term of office for members shall be for the life of the Commission. A vacancy in the Commission shall not affect the powers of the Commission, and shall be filled in the same manner in which the original appointment was made.

 

© First Meeting- The President shall call the first meeting of the Commission within 120 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, or within 30 days after the date on which legislation is enacted making appropriations to carry out this Act, whichever date is later.

 

(d) Quorum- Four members of the Commission shall constitute a quorum, but a lesser number may hold hearings.

 

(e) Chair and Vice Chair- The Commission shall elect a Chair and Vice Chair from among its members. The term of office of each shall be for the life of the Commission.

 

(f) Compensation- (1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), each member of the Commission shall receive compensation at the daily equivalent of the annual rate of basic pay payable for GS-18 of the General Schedule under section 5332 of title 5, United States Code, for each day, including travel time, during which he or she is engaged in the actual performance of duties vested in the Commission.

 

(2) A member of the Commission who is a full-time officer or employee of the United States or a Member of Congress shall receive no additional pay, allowances, or benefits by reason of his or her service to the Commission.

 

(3) All members of the Commission shall be reimbursed for travel, subsistence, and other necessary expenses incurred by them in the performance of their duties to the extent authorized by chapter 57 of title 5, United States Code.

 

SEC. 5. POWERS OF THE COMMISSION.

(a) Hearings and Sessions- The Commission may, for the purpose of carrying out the provisions of this Act, hold such hearings and sit and act at such times and at such places in the United States, and request the attendance and testimony of such witnesses and the production of such books, records, correspondence, memoranda, papers, and documents, as the Commission considers appropriate. The Commission may request the Attorney General to invoke the aid of an appropriate United States district court to require, by subpoena or otherwise, such attendance, testimony, or production.

 

(b) Powers of Subcommittees and Members- Any subcommittee or member of the Commission may, if authorized by the Commission, take any action which the Commission is authorized to take by this section.

 

© Obtaining Official Data- The Commission may acquire directly from the head of any department, agency, or instrumentality of the executive branch of the Government, available information which the Commission considers useful in the discharge of its duties. All departments, agencies, and instrumentalities of the executive branch of the Government shall cooperate with the Commission with respect to such information and shall furnish all information requested by the Commission to the extent permitted by law.

 

SEC. 6. ADMINISTRATIVE PROVISIONS.

(a) Staff- The Commission may, without regard to section 5311(b) of title 5, United States Code, appoint and fix the compensation of such personnel as the Commission considers appropriate.

 

(b) Applicability of Certain Civil Service Laws- The staff of the Commission may be appointed without regard to the provisions of title 5, United States Code, governing appointments in the competitive service, and without regard to the provisions of chapter 51 and subchapter III of chapter 53 of such title relating to classification and General Schedule pay rates, except that the compensation of any employee of the Commission may not exceed a rate equal to the annual rate of basic pay payable for GS-18 of the General Schedule under section 5332 of title 5, United States Code.

 

© Experts and Consultants- The Commission may procure the services of experts and consultants in accordance with the provisions of section 3109(b) of title 5, United States Code, but at rates for individuals not to exceed the daily equivalent of the highest rate payable under section 5332 of such title.

 

(d) Administrative Support Services- The Commission may enter into agreements with the Administrator of General Services for procurement of financial and administrative services necessary for the discharge of the duties of the Commission. Payment for such services shall be made by reimbursement from funds of the Commission in such amounts as may be agreed upon by the Chairman of the Commission and the Administrator.

 

(e) Contracts- The Commission may--

 

(1) procure supplies, services, and property by contract in accordance with applicable laws and regulations and to the extent or in such amounts as are provided in appropriations Acts; and

 

(2) enter into contracts with departments, agencies, and instrumentalities of the Federal Government, State agencies, and private firms, institutions, and agencies, for the conduct of research or surveys, the preparation of reports, and other activities necessary for the discharge of the duties of the Commission, to the extent or in such amounts as are provided in appropriations Acts.

 

SEC. 7. TERMINATION.

The Commission shall terminate 90 days after the date on which the Commission submits its report to the Congress under section 3©.

 

SEC. 8. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.

To carry out the provisions of this Act, there are authorized to be appropriated $8,000,000.

 

 

 

 

 

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Eaaassy there, nothing has been appropriated. Conyers likes to amuse himself with this bill and H.R. 40 had been submitted every year since 1989. It hasn't made it out of committee once, nor will it this time.

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Dave McReynolds
If passed the money will come from the same source as all the other deficit spending: our grandchildren.

 

You must be a lot younger than I am, John, if you think there is any possibility of paying off the deficits that are currently being run up in your grandchildrens' lives.

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The govt has an unlimited supply of money because they can print as much of it as they want.

Inflation concerns notwithstanding of course.

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The govt has an unlimited supply of money because they can print as much of it as they want.

Inflation concerns notwithstanding of course.

Inflation? What's inflation? (linky)

 

My point exactly. Since the government appears to be on an unlimited money spending spree to get the country out of the recession, is hyper-inflation a consequence?

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John Ranalletta
The govt has an unlimited supply of money because they can print as much of it as they want.

Inflation concerns notwithstanding of course.

Inflation? What's inflation? (linky)

My point exactly. Since the government appears to be on an unlimited money spending spree to get the country out of the recession, is hyper-inflation a consequence?

Likely, so, but not just yet. Think of deleveraging as creating a huge vacuum into which the Fed is dumping billions of dollars but to no effect. The larger and more dangerous condition is the continued de-leveraging by consumers and companies. I'm sitting at my desk and just outside the window, 11" of snow is evaporating in 60 deg sunshine. It's an analogy for what's happening with asset values. In essence, the government cannot print enough money to turn this ship from its current course. The "passengers", i.e. consumers and companies are racheting down expectations, expenditures and borrowing as they begin to realize they are asset poor - again.

 

This is "brave, new world" territory. Hang on. It's going to be a helluva ride!!!

 

Another real example: A client recently dropped a 20-year supplier whose cost structure would not permit him to cut prices by 25%. A second supplier employing Mennonites who work for much less and don't demand benefits is now supplying the components.

 

“We’re certainly in the midst of a once-in-a-lifetime set of economic conditions. The perspective I would bring is not one of recession. Rather, the economy is resetting to a lower level of business and consumer spending based largely on the reduced leverage in the economy.”

 

Corporations are adjusting to this new normal by cutting costs as their revenues shift downward. Households are adjusting to this by massively lowering their intake of leverage, and we believe soon to be paying it down. Even Ballmer recognizes the anomaly is over and is acting appropriately as far as Microsoft is concerned. When will this most important of messages and conceptual thinking make it to Washington? Answer: Don’t hold your breath, okay? After all, everything we've seen from the powers that be so far suggests to us they have absolutely no intention of adjusting to a new normal, but rather are doing everything in their power to recreate the old anomaly.

 

 

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John Ranalletta
So are you saying serious inflation is not inevitable?
IMO, inflation is inevitable because it serves the Feds and the politicians needs, but the date of onset is the $64k question.
Now that the "artificial-wealth bubble" of the past two decades is finally collapsing, one of two scenarios can occur: capital destruction or purchasing-power destruction. Capital destruction occurs when the monetary supply decreases as individuals and institutions sell assets to pay off debts and defaults and savings starts growing at the expense of consumption, otherwise known as deleveraging. This is deflation and the public immediately sees and feels its effect, as savings accounts, equity funds, and wages start declining. Deflation serves no benefit to the Federal Reserve, as declining prices spur positive-feedback panic selling and bank runs, and debt repayments in nominal terms under deflation cause real losses.

 

Purchasing-power destruction is much more desirable by the Fed. Its effects are "hidden" to a certain extent, as the public doesn't see any nominal losses and only feels wealth destruction in obscure price inflation. It breeds perceptions of illusionary strength rather than deflation's exaggerated weakness. The typical taxpayer will panic when his or her mutual fund goes down 20% but will probably not react to an expansion of monetary supply unless it reaches 1970s price-inflationary levels. In addition, the government can pay back its public debt with devalued nominal dollars, which transfers wealth from the taxpayers to the government to pay its debt. Inflation is essentially a regressive consumption tax, which the government wants and the Fed attempts to "hide." Not only is the Treasury's debt burden reduced but the government's tax revenues inherently increase.

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Francois_Dumas
So are you saying serious inflation is not inevitable?

 

I don't see how it would not occur..... look at what happened to the exchange rate in the past 12 months already. Now with the additional crisis on top of it and a major change in spending both by consumers, companies and government (no doubt), you have all the ingredients you ever needed.

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There has been a lot of talk about the US Government (US Taxpayer) making restitution to the descendants of slaves for unpaid wages and for punitive fines levied for unfair and improper treatment (the slave industry and all it entails). My view, and the view of countless African Americans, is simply this: we can all best justify the endless, tireless, labors of our slave ancestors by bringing about their collective hopes and dreams. The sum total of their ambitions were not to see their descendants receive a check for past wrongs, but to see their offspring fully share in all that it means to be an American citizen. To see their children live in a country where they are no longer judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character. It is incumbent upon America to cease judging us by the color of our skin, and it is incumbent upon black Americans -- all Americans, really -- to develop character worthy of the scrutiny of others.

 

OK, while we black Americans are cleaning up our collective act -- which admittedly, needs work(!) – the best thing white America can do to make reparations is simply to work to make this country what the founders envisioned in the first place! In every way, slavery was not a good institution. But by good fortune or Gods grace, some of the African slaves were brought here, to this great country. A nation founded upon such uniquely high ideals we enjoy the open and free society that we have today because of those wise men. Nonetheless, we still have a lot of work to do – not just in the continued fulfillment of their goals, but in guarding our nation from getting side tracked by diversionary, anti-American policies that quite frankly, will do nothing to free us from our ugly past. A past in which the black man suffered to be sure, but so did the Native American Indian, countless Asians, women of every color and nationality, and many European descendants as well.

 

America must also realize that the work of making this nation was never the sole burden of the white man, but all people of every walk of life have made major contributions to this great nation. The face of America isn’t simply a white, Anglo-Saxon, protestant, man, it is also the face of the descendant of black slaves, the Jewish immigrant, the Latino family, the Asian family, the gay/lesbian persons, the atheists, the Irish Catholic, the ambitious Armenian man, the hardworking Nigerian and countless others. No one racial, ethnic, religious, or ideological group has a lock on what a “true American” is, but we all understand in part and work together to provide an understanding in whole. All of us acknowledging this reality and working to protect it embodies the dreams of all of our ancestors -- the slave ancestor included.

 

Today, American has illustrated at least this one truth: by electing Barack Obama to the White House, the past is the past and today is a new day. Whether he is the right man for job will be debated for sometime to come I imagine, but I think we can reach some hard conclusions about how far our nation has come. To me, this transformation of the American Spirit to cease judging by the color of ones skin as opposed to the content of a mans character – in at least as far as we could tell about Obama, is a reparation beyond even the slaves highest dreams!

 

This is a truth you can take to the bank: our collective success, prosperity, and world leadership does more to justify the unimaginably horrific life of the slave much more so than any government check ever could. Reparations? I’m all for it. And in fact, I am pleased that my country has been actively “repaying” all of her citizens ever since that bloody Civil War and up to today. If there is an after life, my ancestors will rejoice when I tell them how much their contributions to her greatness mattered, how thankful our nation is because of their sacrifices as illustrated by her acknowledging the contributions of all her citizens, and by how much the country has matured in the fulfillment of her ideals. They will rejoice upon hearing such news. A check? I don’t imagine that will mean a whole lot to them.

 

God forbid, but should this great democracy fail – and I realize we are perilously close to that reality as this moment in time – and a band of people decide to recreate such a great nation, you really won’t need whips, chains, cages, ships, etc…Really. Next time, just ask! And be prepared for the tidal wave of volunteers from all over the globe in the building of such a nation.

 

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The govt has an unlimited supply of money because they can print as much of it as they want.

Inflation concerns notwithstanding of course.

 

Yep, just look at the amounts in circulation!

465840036_3Jfqo-XL.jpg

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Damn, that's a good post.

Indeed it is. You might try sending a copy to:

 

The Honorable John Conyers, Jr.

United States House of Representatives

2426 Rayburn House Office Building

Washington, D.C. 20515-2214

 

but I doubt it will have much effect...

 

 

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John Ranalletta

James, great post. This thread got derailed from the original track and none of my posts to the thread are in anyway related to the the reparations issue. The question was "were will any money come from".

 

The issue of preparations stands apart from how well the economy is doing.

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Damn, that's a good post.
You're damn right, Andy!

 

James, I'm more sorry with every one of your posts that I never got to make your acquaintance when you were out here in SoCal. :(

 

I'd also love to give this talented guy a harder time to find fodder for his songs, but . . . .

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Most excellent, James. MLK would applaud. Jesse Jackson would whine and threaten. John Conyers would say you don't understand. But you do, obviously, and in a way that is good for the spirit of the nation.

 

Kent

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The govt has an unlimited supply of money because they can print as much of it as they want.

Inflation concerns notwithstanding of course.

 

Yep, just look at the amounts in circulation!

465840036_3Jfqo-XL.jpg

 

This is an interesting chart to compare that one too.

 

JuneJR2.jpg

 

This shouldn't be confused with deflation but still shows that inflation can be controlled

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Most excellent, James. MLK would applaud. Jesse Jackson would whine and threaten. John Conyers would say you don't understand. But you do, obviously, and in a way that is good for the spirit of the nation.

 

Kent

Yes indeed, Kent.

 

James ... you have my vote should you ever head that direction! That said ... I would never wish that upon someone ... just sayin', if you do head that direction!

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I'm old enough to remember what happened to the economy at the end of the Vietnam war. Johnson thought the war could be fought without tax increases, and we know where that led.

 

For some time I have thought that the US inflation rate was artifically suppressed by Walmart and cheap imports from China. Despite the trends of the past decade, I just can't believe that we're not in for some serious inflation within the next 4 years, to the point that I'm considering moving some money into TIPS bonds.

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Gee philbytx when you ask "where's the money coming from ?", I anticipated sums in the hundreds of billions: here you are griping about a paltry eight million (what's that, an annual bonus for a VP bond trader ?).

 

And yes, beemerman2k, an excellent post, clear and compelling.

 

Now about those reparations, I'm thinking $$$ in the hands of ordinary Americans, e.g., African-American janes and joes, is preferable, imho, to adding to the largess of rapacious (oops, crossing the line here) wall street fat cats.

 

Wooster who recalls Vine D'loria's (sp ?) "Custer Died for Your Sins"

 

btw, at a Maine ski lift, a multi-pierced, soul-patched lift op asked me "What's the difference between a vacume cleaner and a snow boarder ? It's how you attach the dirt bag." [it's just a joke]

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