“The underlying problem, of course, is the extension of the suffrage, which drastically reduced the educational level of the electorate. I cannot imagine any way of counteracting that development.”
Strict separation of education and state (something John Stewart Mill proposed but which his left-oriented successors conveniently forgot) would help here, but probably only on the margins.
“I have proposed an Article V Convention to amend the Constitution as a means of restoring the federal principle.”
Your idea is a good idea but why not just repeal the 17th Amendment? Is it a matter of strategic considerations (now that people have gotten used to electing Senators and considering theirs stand-up guys and everyone elses useless timeserving windbags, they won’t want to give up direct election of these Life Senators, so the best available strategy to restore some sort of Federalism is to add this feature)?
Aside from the Court decision aspect though I think one major problem is Federal money; as long as so much money goes to the Federal Government and then is cycled back to the States, the latter are in effect paid off to toe the line (Progressives actually *love* machine politics – at a wholesale, national level; that’s the only reason they hated the local political machines – like any firm of the era, they wanted to stamp out their smaller competitors).