"Balanced-budget amendments are a waste of time." - Tom WoodsSubmitted by MyFirstNameIsPaul on Mon, 02/28/2011 - 16:10
From Tom Woods's latest book, Rollback: Repealing Big Government Before the Coming Fiscal Collapse locations 3134-38 in chapter 7 (I have the Kindle version) Woods is debunking the Republican Party's 1994 'Contract with America':
One plank from the Contract was a balanced-budget amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Balanced-budget amendments are a waste of time. There is no way they could be worded that the federal government could not find some way to evade. Faced with a balanced-budget requirement, the federal government will simply take more and more expenditures off budget. On top of that, any such amendment inevitably allows for exceptions. And the Contract's Fiscal Responsibility Act allowed for an unbalanced budget as long as three-fifths of Congress approved it. There's a hurdle they'd never clear.
I'm disappointed that so many people jump to discussing amendment/constitutional convention trivia instead of the proposal itself. We must think critically about everything anyone is proposing, even things proposed from Ron Paul. We have a balanced-budget amendment in California and what Woods describes in Rollback is the same thing that the state of California has done. I am not aware of any evidence that such amendments solve any fiscal-related problems, or any problems, for that matter.