Thursday, April 28, 2011

Deep in the Fourteen Amendment

Here's an interesting take from the Atlantic: "The speech Obama could give: 'The Constitution forbids default.'" Apparently there's a section in the 14th amendment that states: "...the validity of the public debt...shall not be questioned."

Oh, I don't question the debt's validity. Just like Standard & Poors, I question our capability of paying it.

1 comment:

Jim Glass said...

"The Constitution forbids default."

Flat false. See the Supreme Court's "Gold Clause Cases" after the govt refused to pay off its bonds in gold, as required by their terms, in 1933 -- a default in anybody's book.

The court held that such "repudiation" of debt is within the power of the govt.

IOW, the fact that govt debt is "valid and unquestioned" does NOT mean it can't be restructured -- any more than the valid and unquestioned debt of General Motors couldn't be restructured.