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America's Downfall - Things That Are Wrong

Short Selling (Stocks)
Making gobs of money, using someone else's stocks (without their knowledge) is not right. It's like me running a Photocopy Service -- you drop off your papers and I'll have your copies tomorrow and you can pay me. But I don't have a photocopier. Instead, I use the photocopy machine at work, during the lunch hour when most everyone is gone. Additionally, the guy that's letting your stocks be used by his buddy to make his or their personal small-fortune killing is not doing what he is supposed to be doing with your stock. He's supposed to be making money for you.
American Companies Using Offshore Tax-Shelter Schemes
Presidential signing statements that make the President above the law.
"No Fault" Divorce
Marriage formerly was an actual contract, based on the marriage vows recited by each spouse. To get that contract 'cancelled', one party would have to prove in court that the other party had failed to fulfill their obligation. That is why Private Investigators were hired in the long past to discover and document a case of suspected infidelity. Besides infidelity, habitual drunkenness, failure to provide basic support to the family (i.e. won't work due to laziness), inability to consummate the marriage (erectile dysfunction), and gross mistreatment (beatings, etc) were some of the very few legitimate reasons to ask the court to grant a divorce. If anyone really wanted to stop the current cases of domestic abuse, the proper method is to pass a law that requires the marriage to be more in tune with reality. An example of Truthful wedding vows would be something like the following:
I, John Doe, do hereby take you, Slippery Suzy, to be my lawful wedded wife. I attest that I fully understand that the vows you will be speaking in just a minute, where you will promise to love, cherish, and be faithful to me, in sickness and health, rich or poor, better or worse, are all just meaningless words to you, to your friends, and to the Courts of Law. I further attest that when you start cheating on me in the future, I will peacefully hand over to you the house we have, the better of any vehicles we have, and half of my paycheck. I agree that, should you decide to "ride" other men, I will play the part of cuckolded husband, or I will walk away from our marriage and cheerfully give to you the aforementioned house, car, and giant chunk of my paycheck.

Joe hasn't finished this yet --

Decriminalization of Adultery
Adultery is currently legal in most of the United States yet this is the root cause of a large proportion of domestic violence between husband and wife. (What- you thought that there are just a bunch of mean men out there that like to beat their wives for fun? Ha Ha - dream on.)
The new system of trackless Electronic Voting (and 'same-day' registration)
Illegalization of children's treehouses
Dog Leash Laws & other "must be controlled" laws
(Bertha, look at all the stray cats in the neighborhood!)
The Lautenberg Amendment
Prohibits Soldiers from ANY firearm if convicted of Domestic Violence. Including soldiers in a combat zone in a foreign country. That's just plain stupid. That's us Americans saying that we don't want any mean people on the front lines. We only want nice people, who wouldn't hurt a flea, being armed to kill the enemy. Huh? If a soldier wants to kill his wife, the Lautenberg Amendment is not going to stop him. Prohibiting soldiers from firearms except during authorized training periods while they are in non-combat areas might make sense but still... And the ban is for life! So, if your cheating wife gets all gussied up -- lipstick, tight dress, nail polish, and sheer crotchless pantyhose -- and tells you she is going to the "store". When you grab her wrist to plead with her not to do what you know she is really going to be doing... Bam! You've just permanently, irrevocably lost your right to ever again buy, possess, or carry a firearm. That's not right.
"Settlements" with corporations in criminal cases
Settlements, in criminal cases allow the corporations and their executives to avoid completely any real punishment for their criminal activity (such as fraud, bribery, etc). It allows the criminal corporation bosses to simply pay a fine for their criminal activity-- and the "Settlement" procedure allows them to actually "negotiate" how much their fine will be.

The corporations and their executives should face mandatory prison sentences in the cases of violations of criminal law. Then, any fines added on top should come directly from the corporate decision-makers' pockets first (disgorging them of their ill-gotten gains) and fines against the corporation should be on a 3-step system...
  1. Small Fine -  1/3 of the company's current stock price value
  2. Medium Fine - 2/3 of the company's current stock price value
  3. Large Fine -  Complete forfeiture to the Gov't (just like drug-dealers' possessions are currently forfeited to the Gov't)
Elimination of Conjugal Visits for Prisoners
Although there may be some areas that still allow conjugal visits, many prisons have eliminated them under the pretense of "security". But conjugal visits are no different than regular visits in the sense that anything that can be smuggled-in during conjugal visits can be also smuggled-in at regular visits. Any metallic items (files, guns, knives) are already checked for when the visitors arrive. Other small-potatoes stuff, like lighters, stash bags, etc. are not a true security issue and they can be smuggled-in during regular visits. In other words, stopping conjugal visits is not stopping anything.
Using the word SPECTRUM when "range" is meant
(Not really a downfall item, but stored here till I make a page for this item)
The word 'spectrum' carries with it a meaning of 'seeing' (e.g. spectator, spectacle, spectacles (eyeglasses), specter (spectre), spectrometer in its original meaning of a light-wave measurer). For example, the light spectrum (or, 'Visible Light Spectrum' if redundancy never bothers you). But the phrase, "...broad spectrum antibiotic..." (seemingly an attempt by pharmaceuticals to sound 'high tech') is very irritating to my (possibly over-pedantic) ear. The misuse of the word SPECTRUM seems to have started near the time that Latin, as a school subject, was being removed from the list of required courses.
Iowa Code 231E Iowa Substitute Decision Maker Act