Tap-Dancing in a Mine Field
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.Avoiding all use of technical financial terms like "tranche" and "mark-to-market" and "leveraged assets", what has happened with the AIG bonus kerfuffle is not about rich v. poor, or misuse of taxpayer funds. (if it were, Congress would be declared unconstitutional). It is about the government deciding that contracts are no longer enforceable if they don't want them to be.
I know the sawing noise coming from the limb they are sitting on can be a bit distracting, but have they really considered the consequences of this? Never mind AIG. Just think of all the contracts we have. Congressional salaries are a contract. Oaths of office are contracts. If Congress can void a valid contract, what else can it take? My house, that I am still making timely payments on. My bank account. My cats. How can I be secure in my property this way? How can THEY be secure in theirs?
And if that didn't cheer you up, guess what? The Social Security surplus fund that has been used to mask the true size of the deficit is all used up. Good thing I never thought I'd get any of that money-- but can they stop taking it from my paycheck now? I have a mattress to stuff.