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A nitpick: I don't know how you can say the 17th Amendment "usurped" states representation in the Senate. The states ratified the 17th Amendment, and willingly gave up their powers in that sense.

They were mostly bullied with federal funding, as they always are. It is why federal dependence and welfare is so dangerous, not because of flawed ideologies of who "earned" what, but because they can easily use their services as carrots on a stick to drive people the way they want them the same way a gang might extract loyalty through "protection". It already happens all the time with the elderly in the US and social security / medicare.

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