March 2, 2011
It has become glaringly obvious that our current federal government, and most state governments to varying degrees, have become illegal, oppressive, usurpers of power that run contrary to the constitution and the people they represent.
Governments come in all manner of design. They are more apt to be abusive than they are comforting to those they purport to defend or represent. Of all the governmental forms the most protective of individual rights is a constitutional republic, solely because the powers the government wields are derived from the people and therefore the government cannot legally derive any power that is not granted to the government by the people. Yet, a republican form of government is the most easily lost to a non-attentive or ignorant citizenry.
In the second paragraph of the Declaration of Independence we find, concerning the government and the rights of the people: “That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.”
All governments, and therefore government powers, have a beginning. They are either usurped, meaning taken by force, or the powers are delegated to them by those that created the government. In the case of a dictatorship or other oppressive governmental forms, the power is nearly always usurped. Any power that is assumed by government and not derived from the consent of the people is only “operative” based on the force used to ensure compliance.
Example: In our form of government we established a Congress that has specific powers granted to it (Article 1, Section 8 of the US Constitution). Should Congress pass a law in an area not delegated to them it would be constitutionally invalid. However, having control over various law enforcement entities, funding to states mandating compliance with the new law, and a judiciary that will support the action, the law becomes enforced by those in power. Because the people fear the government and do not want to go to jail they obey the law even though it is not constitutional. I’ll get into examples of this later in the article.
These laws, most often, are enacted to protect us from one manner of harm or another, but do laws really prevent crimes? We pass drug laws, and gun laws, and hate laws, and abuse laws, and environmental laws, etc. but do any of these laws stop a crime? The answer is NO.
Crime is like the old adage – “locks keep honest people honest!” A real criminal would not stop at a locked door, or not buy a firearm because a law said he could not have one, they do it anyway – they are criminals.
So we are told that laws are being passed in response to the actions of criminals (see gun control act) knowing that the operation of the law ONLY affects the actions of the law abiding citizen. A person willing to kill, rape, rob, or perform any number of heinous acts does not care one whit if he is breaking the law, he already knows he is – duh!
What it does do is allow the government to arrest the perpetrator AFTER the crime has been committed.
Let’s take a look at our current gun laws in this light. The government passes a law to assist the states in fighting gun crime within the states. But because there is no federal law on guns the government creates a set of uniform laws to be enacted in all the states of the Union even though there is no constitutional authority to do so. Criminals obtain their weapons via the black market or privates sales which are not governed by the law. Law abiding citizens register weapons, fill out all the forms, and pay the taxes, etc. while all the while the criminal is not burdened one bit.
The only people that are affected by the law are specifically those with no criminal intent and in some cases are made criminals simply by making changes in the law (see assault weapons ban).
Speaking of the assault weapons ban – this law made illegal many firearms that had a certain look. The sellers of these weapons would change certain characteristics such as the attachment at the end of the barrel, or the stock, or sell smaller capacity magazines and voila they are now compliant with the law.
Did this affect the capability of the firearm? Absolutely not! It still fired the exact same round at exactly the same velocity and rate of fire. It did absolutely nothing to change the criminal getting these arms but it did cause more money to be put into the firearms trade to comply with the law, it burdened the law abiding citizen with more regulations, paperwork and more taxes and in many cases caused a buying frenzy before the bill became enacted. With absolutely zero effect on the criminal element.
Another example is the war on drugs. We have been constantly “fighting the war on drugs” for decades. Today we have more people in jail for drug related crimes than ever before and the drug problem has only gotten worse.
We spend enormous amounts of money to control inanimate objects rather than enforce personal responsibility for one’s own actions. Rather than pass laws on “things” let’s focus on enforcing laws on unacceptable behavior regardless of the tool or item used.
Thomas Paine, in his book “Rights of Man,” stated “A constitution is not the act of a government, but of a people constituting a government; and government without a constitution is power without a right.”
Remember a just government is created by the consent of the governed. It is the people that create the constitution which in turn creates the government. If they act without a constitution, or without authority granted by the constitution then they are acting solely by power and without right.
He went on to state that: “All power exercised over a nation must have some beginning. It must either be delegated or assumed. There are no other sources. All delegated power is trust, and all assumed power is usurpation. Time does not alter the nature and quality of either.”
So here Paine is telling us that there are only two types of power – delegated or assumed. Delegated power comes from that which created the government whereas assumed power comes only by force and is usurped.
So what does usurped mean? According to Black’s Law Dictionary it means: “The unlawful seizure and assumption of another’s position, office, or authority.”
In the US Constitution we have the 10th Amendment which states: “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.” So as you can see the federal government can only lawfully act when it is operating within a delegated power enumerated within the Constitution. If the government assumes any other power it does so unlawfully and does it by force not by rightful authority.
Many of you may not know but the current federal gun laws were derived from the federal governments taxing authority and tied to the Article 1, Section 8 Commerce clause. Originally the law was billed as a revenue scheme and regulatory agency for the interstate firearms trade under Title 15. It later morphed, assumed power, under Title 18 – Criminal Statutes – without any supporting delegated power found in Article 1, Section 8, and is therefore operating as “The unlawful seizure and assumption of another’s… authority” in this case of the states of the Union.
If you look through the breadth and scope of our current federal government and try and tie a direct, non-assumptive, authority to those listed in Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution you will find vast over-reach by our central government. Agencies such as the Department of Education, Department of Energy, Department of Housing, Department of Health and Human Services, Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Agriculture, and many others.
There is not one area of your life that is not touched by the federal government. In fact today in the United States we have more in common with Lenin’s Russia than we do with Washington’s America.
It is time we stopped this leviathan federal government and return the usurped powers to where they belong – the states and the people. Until we stand up to the federal government and demand compliance with the Constitution that created them we will continue to see more encroachments upon our rights and liberties. And if they refuse we must be willing, as a union of states and a people, to enforce our just will by whatever means necessary.
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Many states are engaged in legislation to stop unconstitutional laws, such as Obama Care, or are entertaining legislation that will nullify unconstitutional federal laws. We must go further and start enacting legislation within the states that make ANY law deemed unconstitutional by the state null and void from operating within the jurisdiction of the state and refuse to receive funding or pay any taxes to those unconstitutional programs. It is time the beast was stopped.