FEDERAL WRONGS - STATE’S RIGHTS
June 20, 2010
I could never understand why state governors were willing to go along with federal programs that created federal mandates adding millions of dollars to the states’ budgets. Maybe I just happen to be an overly independent cuss, but for the past 40 years I have survived by telling the federal government: “I don’t want your federal money – I just want to be left alone.” When I first began farming, I did get involved in some of the government programs, but like a nine day old pup, my eyes opened, and I could see these programs for what they really are – control over the use of my own land. It’s beyond common sense that a state government will collect tax money from its state citizens, then send the money to the federal authorities in the hopes of getting a small percentage of it returned.
This may no longer be the case in Missouri. The state legislature has a bill pending that may change the situation. HB2176 states that all federal tax moneys collected by the state on behalf of the federal government shall be deposited into a fund and kept in Missouri, only to be distributed on a quarterly basis. The money will draw interest while in Missouri and the earned interest will belong to the state. If the federal government imposes sanctions or calls for unfunded federal mandates, the State Treasurer shall withhold from payment all or part of the disbursement normally transferred to the federal recipient.
The Tenth Amendment under the Bill of Rights 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.” In other words if it isn’t in the Constitution the federal government has no jurisdiction, no authority, no right to come into a state and tell its officers or citizens what they can or cannot do. Up until 1920 when prohibition went into effect, laws were enforced at the local level, but in order to break up the whiskey stills and the rum runners, the federal government established its own “G-men”; “G” standing for Government. These G-men were the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco & Firearms (ATF). Then along came the FBI, CIA, Homeland Security, IRS, FEMA and a host of other agencies used to enforce federal laws. Knowing all this was unconstitutional, the states should have stopped them in 1933 when liquor became legal, but no one complained. Those good people in Washington will take care of us.
Now a host of states are beginning to retaliate. Once Montana launched the “Firearms Freedom Act” that says guns made, sold and used within the borders of the state are not subject to the scrutiny of the federal government, five states have now passed a similar law – Tennessee, Utah, Wyoming, South Dakota and Montana. One state law includes criminal penalties, including fines and jail time, for federal agents attempting to enforce a federal law on a personal firearm. Other states with pending firearms legislation include Alaska, Idaho, Oklahoma, Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia, Washington and West Virginia. Since a United Nation’s treaty would give the Obama administration an end-run around such legislation, Colorado initiative #42 reads: “The people of Colorado declare that all elected public officials in the state, including State Legislators, Governor, Attorney General, Secretary of State, U.S. Representatives and U.S. Senators oppose the adoption of any United Nation’s treaty or other binding international agreement which impairs, restricts or regulates the right to keep and bear arms protected by Section 13 of the Bill of Rights.”
More than two dozen states have denounced the Real ID Act. Other states are passing legislation denouncing federal authority concerning medical use of marijuana, Cap & Trade, Health Care Mandates, National Animal Identification, federal interference with the State National Guard, Interstate Commerce, and the rights of the county Sheriff to cause federal authorities to work through them. Utah claims authority to take federal lands under eminent domain. Idaho officials have called for an amendment to the U.S. Constitution that would expand the rights controlled by states.
The federal government was created by the states, not the other way around. State governments are independent sovereignties, not subdivisions of the federal government. The federal government has very little jurisdiction over the states; so federal authorities threaten, bribe, intimidate, but have no authority to command a state to indulge in federal policy.
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Joseph Story, Associate Justice, U.S. Supreme Court (1833) wrote: “The powers of the general (federal) government must be principally employed upon EXTERNAL objects, such as war, peace negotiations with foreign powers and foreign commerce. And to lay taxes for the common good. In its internal operations it can touch but few objects. The powers of the states, on the other hand extend to all objects, which, in the ordinary course of affairs, concern the lives and liberties and property of the people and the internal order, improvement and prosperity of the state.” Something Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid and President Obama just can’t comprehend.
© 2010 Derry Brownfield - All Rights Reserved