Western Rifle Shooters Association

Do not give in to Evil, but proceed ever more boldly against it

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

On Restoration

There is continuing useful discussion over the utility of "restoring the Constitution" as a primary FreeFor objective. To advance that discussion, I'd offer the following:


A) From an email last week:

To me, there are three important reasons to use the phrase "restore the constitution":

1) Lawfare Ambush KZ: I dare that SOB Holder to use the DOJ mechanism against anybody working or talking to restore the Constitution. I double-dog-dare that MF to do so.

2) PsyOps: When the .mil is sent by the NCA against their fellow citizens, I want each troopie to have to put their reticle on a fellow American standing for the same Constitution that the troopie is oathbound to protect and defend.

3) Paradigm Inflexibility: Many good and honorable people who will stand simply cannot bend their heads around a "return to the Articles" endstate
at this time. They will evolve in their thinking, just as I have (hell, I was a freaking drug war prosecutor fifteen years ago -- talk about evolution!), and I can't ask them to both die and give up their core preconceptions right now.

The Old Republic is gone. Here's what we need:



I won't see that flag flown very often, if at all.

And it will take a decade or more to restore more than a handful of stars to the canton.

But it will fly.

Forward.

B) Having noted those pragmatic reasons for the continuing use of the phrase, I'd ask folks to really think through the following questions:

1) When we use the RTC formula, what specifically is being 'restored'? If we are talking about the literal language of the USC/BoR/subsequent amendments (the "as written" approach), what needs to be done about 220 years of Federal court opinions "interpreting" those words? And, having first defined what exactly is to be done with that body of common law (not to mention the judges who beget same), how does one go about doing that in the context of a Restoration conflict?

2) Some specific examples to illustrate the problem:

a) Korematsu vs. United States: Read both the Wiki entry and the actual US Supreme Court case (including the dissents).

Really makes you proud to be an American, doesn't it? Moreover, consider how the language in the following excerpt from the majority opinion could be used against other modern-day Korematsus:

***
Korematsu was not excluded from the Military Area because of hostility to him or his race. He was excluded because we are at war with the Japanese Empire, because the properly constituted military authorities feared an invasion of our West Coast and felt constrained to take proper security measures, because they decided that the military urgency of the situation demanded that all citizens of Japanese ancestry be segregated from the West Coast temporarily, and, finally, because Congress, reposing its confidence in this time of war in our military leaders -- as inevitably it must -- determined that they should have the power to do just this. There was evidence of disloyalty on the part of some, the military authorities considered that the need for action was great, and time was short. We cannot -- by availing ourselves of the calm perspective of hindsight -- now say that, at that time, these actions were unjustified.

-- 323 U. S. at 223-224
***


Remember that Korematsu remains good law today.

b) Roe vs Wade: Again, read both the Wiki and the actual case. Now, put yourself in the midst of the Restoration conflict. Regardless of where you come out on the morality of abortion itself, are you going to shed one drop of sweat (let alone blood) to "protect and defend" the Federalization of what historically was a state law issue? How about your troops? How exactly are you going to persuade them that they should kill and die for this elitist delusion?

c) Brown vs. Board of Education: Once again, read both the Wiki and the case. Now read Articles I-III of the US Constitution and tell me how local educational decisions (no matter how morally abhorrent) are a concern of any of the Federal government's three branches. Think you'll get anyone to follow you into automatic weapons fire over that one?

For more examples of judicial bastardy most foul by both SCOTUS and the rest of the Federal judiciary, please read

- The Dirty Dozen: How Twelve Supreme Court Cases Radically Expanded Government and Eroded Freedom, and

- The Constitution in Exile: How the Federal Government Has Seized Power by Rewriting the Supreme Law of the Land.

C) My point in asking these questions is not to belittle in any way those who stand for Constitutional restoration. In fact, as every one of you should know, I stand by your side in that endeavor, both literally and figuratively.

But -- and it is a big damned "But" -- we need to engage a lot more intellect in defining, in detail, just what exactly is meant by "restoration", as well as when those meanings shift. The best I can do at this point is the following concept-line:

- The RTC goal is easily understood and has practical short-term utility (see email excerpt above) in the preparation phase;

- During the conflict phase, the RTC message retains its easily-grasped utility and forces the Bad People's lawfare minions in both the executive and judicial branches to contort themselves madly so as to claim that resistance to their tyranny is illegitimate; and

- During the post-conflict criminal trials, the pre-war Constitution will be the scales upon which prosecution and conviction decisions will be weighed.


That being said, I remain gravely concerned about the RTC goal as the proper framework on which to hang a life-and-death struggle for Freedom, especially given the pre-existing Declaration of Independence and Articles of Confederation, not to mention American Constitution 2.0.

Your thoughts -- expressed logically and without personal rancor, please -- are welcomed in comments below.

43 Comments:

Anonymous Jay Stang said...

What you are talking about, really, is KISS. That is easily understood by military personnel.

August 31, 2010 at 3:14 AM  
Anonymous Murray said...

You are absolutely correct. Hans-Hermann Hoppe ( http://mises.org/daily/2874 ) has made this point better than anyone else. Even once you get past the fact that the constitutional convention was a coup d'etat, any presumption that the current constitutional form of government is limited goes out the window the moment you realize that we've abdicated the power to decide what is constitutional to the supreme court. This is utterly illogical, as scotus is a subordinate body. For the federal government to decide the limits of the federal government's power is to have no limits at all, and history has proven this violently and repeatedly. Any argument about separation of powers is nothing but a cheap parlor trick.

The only remotely credible argument in favor of RTC goes part in parcel with the explicit recognition that the individual states themselves were originally and rightfully remain the final arbiters of what is constitutional, and that state nullification of illegal federal action is the only true check against overreaching by a ravenous central government.

http://mises.org/store/Nullification-How-to-Resist-Federal-Tyranny-in-the-21st-Century-P10393.aspx

August 31, 2010 at 3:31 AM  
Anonymous Justin said...

Excellent questions.

These are perhaps more important than asking "when".

I will think on these. Thank you for challenging me with these questions.

Justin

August 31, 2010 at 3:35 AM  
Anonymous Uncle Al said...

While there are attractive aspects to using RTC as a concept, I must state that I do not want to restore a Constitution that contains sufficient flaws to land us in the situation we're faced with today. In other words, for all its good points it didn't work, did it?

Ronn Neff has pointed out that there's some similarity between gun control laws and the Constitution. Those who want to use guns to predate will do so regardless of laws to the contrary. And those who want to use govt to predate will do so regardless of a Constitution to the contrary.

Any constitution is "law control" in this regard. Why should we expect one to work?

August 31, 2010 at 3:42 AM  
Anonymous III more than them said...

"That being said, I remain gravely concerned about the RTC goal as the proper framework on which to hang a life-and-death struggle for Freedom"

---Why? That goal is about as basic as anyone can get regarding a codified body of standards worthy of the fight? Is it becase of THIS that you are concerned?

"- During the post-conflict criminal trials, the pre-war Constitution will be the scales upon which prosecution and conviction decisions will be weighed."

---Are you concerned that they will find a way out of their just deserts via previously exemplified maljurisprudence?

August 31, 2010 at 4:14 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"3) Paradigm Inflexibility: Many good and honorable people who will stand simply cannot bend their heads around a "return to the Articles" endstate at this time. They will evolve in their thinking, just as I have (hell, I was a freaking drug war prosecutor fifteen years ago -- talk about evolution!), and I can't ask them to both die and give up their core preconceptions *right now*."

Would you "ask" the Jews to continue to get into the boxcars, until the good Germans got around to recognizing their error of supporting the Nazis? The victims may decide to continue to accept damage from their persecutors, because they have empathy and respect for them as human beings. But this is the victims' concession to make. At no time can you claim the victims owe their tormentors the right to persecute them, regardless of their tormentors' motivations.

It is a primary mechanism of government to lie, so the "elites" can manipulate the "sheeple" into "doing the right thing", as defined by the elites. If you lie to the man on the street by saying "Restore the Constitution" when you really mean "Replace the Constitution with Liberty" you partake of the evil government nature. If you tell "white" lies you think will cause the right thing to happen, then we can't believe anything you say.

If you are reflexively contort issues into the old legal forms box, then you will tend to think in that box. For example, I don't care that Roe vs Wade was historically a state law issue; if you aren't the mother than it isn't your issue. Why would you even mention that it was historically a state law issue? Morally, all forms of regulating it are moot. Government survives based on the illusion of legitimacy. Giving government respect by your way of speaking is as destructive to liberty as voting. Don't be a government. Honesty is the best way, to the extent you can tolerate the heat in real life.

"Think you'll get anyone to follow you into automatic weapons fire over [Brown vs. Board of Education]?"

Who cares? Once again you are thinking in terms of raising the vote count on your side, in a contest decided by majority voting. Morals are not decided by majority vote, that is the evil Communist idea.

August 31, 2010 at 5:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

(Resent, comment too large)

"3) Paradigm Inflexibility: Many good and honorable people who will stand simply cannot bend their heads around a "return to the Articles" endstate at this time. They will evolve in their thinking, just as I have (hell, I was a freaking drug war prosecutor fifteen years ago -- talk about evolution!), and I can't ask them to both die and give up their core preconceptions *right now*."

Would you "ask" the Jews to continue to get into the boxcars, until the good Germans got around to recognizing their error of supporting the Nazis? The victims may decide to continue to accept damage from their persecutors, because they have empathy and respect for them as human beings. But this is the victims' concession to make. At no time can you claim the victims owe their tormentors the right to persecute them, regardless of their tormentors' motivations.

It is a primary mechanism of government to lie, so the "elites" can manipulate the "sheeple" into "doing the right thing", as defined by the elites. If you lie to the man on the street by saying "Restore the Constitution" when you really mean "Replace the Constitution with Liberty" you partake of the evil government nature. If you tell "white" lies you think will cause the right thing to happen, then we can't believe anything you say.

(continued)

August 31, 2010 at 5:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

(part two)

If you are reflexively contort issues into the old legal forms box, then you will tend to think in that box. For example, I don't care that Roe vs Wade was historically a state law issue; if you aren't the mother than it isn't your issue. Why would you even mention that it was historically a state law issue? Morally, all forms of regulating it are moot. Government survives based on the illusion of legitimacy. Giving government respect by your way of speaking is as destructive to liberty as voting. Don't be a government. Honesty is the best way, to the extent you can tolerate the heat in real life.

"Think you'll get anyone to follow you into automatic weapons fire over [Brown vs. Board of Education]?"

Who cares? Once again you are thinking in terms of raising the vote count on your side, in a contest decided by majority voting. Morals are not decided by majority vote, that is the evil Communist idea.

August 31, 2010 at 5:10 AM  
Anonymous Defender said...

Some very astute legal minds here.
For myself and my family, we would like to see no government coercion on ANYTHING, and no partisans agitating for that coercion of others on any issue. A nation of free sovereigns. I have strong opinions on some issues, no opinions on others. However, I don't want to tell anyone what they can and can't do, and I don't want them telling me.
I know it's not that simple and never will be. NOT giving the opposition a "The Man" who is going to take away THEIR precious perceived individual rights may not stop THEIR attempts to do the same to us, but someone has to start stopping.
Otherwise, we are all divided and can be conquered by any passing enemy with a sockful of sh--.

August 31, 2010 at 5:17 AM  
Blogger Concerned American said...

Anon: Please take the time to ask questions, rather than make assumptions.

You are missing the point of the piece.

August 31, 2010 at 5:24 AM  
Blogger daniel said...

I'm partial to the RTC message because, boiled down, it's simply a call for a group of people to adhere to what they already agreed to. It's easier to do that than the other alternatives (explain libertarianism, economics, philosophy, history through a megaphone or on a flyer or banner).

The RTC rallies obvious inclusion of 2A needing restoration is a good starting point, something that's easily understood and difficult to BS around.

We're here. We're armed. The document you swore to uphold says we can do this. If you try to disarm us, you are going against what you agreed to.

That being said, a list of usurpations, like Eric Stinnet's speed read at Gravelly, would work best to quickly articulate what exactly it is that we want.

August 31, 2010 at 5:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for offering such great, stimulating questions to your readers, our dear fellow Patriots.

One thing to recognize; the Constitution is a more of a procedural document; than a statement of firm & resolute principles. It is the flesh on the bones; but not the bones.

The Bones are the firm Principles: INALIENABLE RIGHTS, granted by God alone, thus revokable by no human authority.

Government governs BY CONSENT OF THE GOVERNED, not by autocratic fiat or hereditary title.

A King is required be Righteous, to be fit to be a 'ruler of a free people' - He must also be bound by his own Law:
(Declaration & Deuteronomy 17:14-20)

These Bones, these main Principles cannot simply be discerned from the text of the Constitution, alone; they must be derived from the Declaration of Independence - which was the Context in which the US Constitution was conceived, primarily.

Even the Declaration presupposed the various State Constitutions & the Northwest Ordinances, and the Mayflower Compact - the first written Constitution on these shores.

These were in turn, based upon a grasp of the Common Law Rights of Englishmen as codified in Magna Charta. And the Principles of Law in this magnificent document were decended from Biblical Law - the concept of 'all men Created equal & equal before the Law' codified by Moses in the 10 Commandments & Christian doctrine.

Today, the pernicious influence of government schools & the neglect of Fathers teaching these things to their children, and grandchildren, have left this Heritage of Liberty largely unknown - how tragic !

I point this out to demonstrate that the Constitution can't defend itself, it needs US to do so, and it doesn't stand alone - it was the development of many strands of Libety, and the average American has been long cut-off from those sources.

But this CAN & IS changing. There are great teaching resources available to bring us up to speed. We must do due dilligence - if we want to avoid the chains of dependency, we must take action - what this thread & blog are all about.

By all means, Defend & Restore the Constitution - by all Lawful, God honoring & historically Truthful sources we can find.

One great course is at www.IOTConline.com - an online course on the Founding Fathers worldview & how it influenced the Constitution.

Another view, from an anti-Federalist viewpoint - is the excellent 'Hologram of Liberty' by Boston T. Party - he uncovers the 'expansions of power' clauses that Hamilton & others inserted to expand governnment by stealth.

Keep up the great work, Patriots !

August 31, 2010 at 7:50 AM  
Blogger Atlas Shrug said...

Restore The Constitution = Horse

Refine The Constitution = Cart


Right now we are still trying to get the Horse calm and bridled, let alone hitched. Let's get him pulling the Cart before getting too side tracked on what's in the Cart, OK?

The Horse is the vehicle that we ride into Liberty on, the Cart is the vehicle that follows it.

Let's not get the Cart before the Horse.

Keep your powder dry,

Atlas Shrug

August 31, 2010 at 11:04 AM  
Anonymous Nemesis said...

I don't think the Constitution needs restored, just the government.The Constitution is about the most perfect document to be written by man.It is the gov. that strayed & the states that relinquished there right to keep the fed in check by accepting fed bribes.The only purpose of the fed. is to gaurentee life,liberty,& pursuit of happiness.Most laws will have to be repealed to conform to the Constitution.

August 31, 2010 at 11:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We face some interesting times. When our dollar goes south, the ecomony collapes, as some have suggested, the fact remains the RTC is in my mind already there. Meaning the Constitution is there. We are missing those in all levels of office who respect that and the majority of non-elitists out here who make their life. We have the IIIs, and all the others, Oath Keepers, etc., expressed the readiness when the call for action is called. But for me at what action point? November elections? 01-01-2012? an EMP, Another jihad? a disease outbreak, the blue helmets and who(m)does step up and calls it? Part of what we face in our readiness for a coordinated call to action is going to be really hampered when those around us, who are too wrapped up in daily, kids, family, jobs and will go WTF happened? These with their head in the sand may not give a crap who is where as they only are concerned about today and maybe tomorrow and as long as I can go to the store, 4bucks or twitter. So while I and a lot of you reading this are willing to step up, give up family, fortune and possibly our lives for the greater good still leaves me with the question for leadership roles to guide us in the action (RTC). This is exactly what the obamanoids want is diviciveness, contridictions, lack of anything clear and more time to sink things around us. Those that are smarter than me I hope have figured the grander plan that the RTC encompasses, etc. all that fits in and who will be there to do this. I only hope I and others I know can aid the RTC back to its rightful place in governance over all. My line is in the sand so at some point we may know, after November. A shot across the bow, hyperinflation, jihad? What does it take to act is my question and we may not know that yet? They may or may not be smart enough to realize what happens when and if they fire the first shot at us, whatever that may be.
VETTOM III

August 31, 2010 at 1:32 PM  
Blogger Concerned American said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

August 31, 2010 at 2:07 PM  
Blogger Concerned American said...

I get and support both the simplicity and "government officials already agreed to it" points.

But what happens when SCOTUS says Obamacare is constitutional, in the same "one step forward, three steps back" manner in which they eliminated "shall not be infringed" in Heller?

In other words, to work within Atlas Shrug's imagery, what if the cart is so damaged (broken axles, sideboards rotted and/or missing, filled only with feces and corpses) that it makes no sense to attach the horse of Liberty to it, once she is harnessed?

August 31, 2010 at 2:08 PM  
Blogger Concerned American said...

One other comment:

From 4/19/1775 through July 2, 1776, there was no common document "binding" the Rebel forces, to my knowledge, to the cause for which they were bleeding and dying.

From July, 1776 through Yorktown, the only documents underpinning the American forces were the Declaration of Independence and the Articles of Confederation.

The war against the British military and their American Loyalist allies was fought and successfully prosecuted, nonetheless.

August 31, 2010 at 2:20 PM  
Blogger daniel said...

CA,

To answer your question, I don't know what will happen when SCOTUS says Obamacare is OK, other than the other side having yet another court precedent to build upon.

Unfortunately, the reaction from our side will most likely be the same as it was to New Haven v. Kelo,......backing up grumbling.

What I'd like to see is our side get out in front of it and begin disobedience against CURRENT anti-constitutional SCOTUS precedent and other current usurpations.

Do some work for less than minimum wage.

Sell unpasteurized homemade cheese.

Modify an AK to fire automatic.

Photgraph a Maryland cop.

Just don't get caught, but flaunt the disobedience anonymously nonetheless.

Also, I'd like to see our side exercise some justified retaliation in some cases where the rule of law is absent.

Anyway, it's time for "a little less talk and a lot more action."

10-30-2010

August 31, 2010 at 3:26 PM  
Anonymous Rollory said...

To use that same example, in that 1775-1776 period - and actually throughout the preceding period with the Stamp Act, Intolerable Acts, etc. - nobody was officially fighting for independence, either. They were fighting for the rights of Englishmen and proclaimed their loyalty to the king and insisted their argument was just with Parliament.

So proclaiming openly one goal while keeping a more extensive one in reserve for a time when the general opinion will be made more receptive to it by events does have some precedent.

August 31, 2010 at 3:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Restore The Constitution = Horse
Refine The Constitution = Cart
"

You're making a key mistake: you assume humans understand how to make government work better than a car from Detroit in the 1970's. US government in 1900 wasn't working better. The accelerator was down but it just hadn't climbed the RPMs past redline yet.

Exponential growth of government is a failure condition at any size. At a minimum, a sane government would need to be stable over the span of two hundred years. That eliminates every historical example but Switzerland. Why is Switzerland stable but America isn't?

"what if the cart is so damaged [...] that it makes no sense to attach the horse of Liberty to it, once she is harnessed?"

This is error. The only correct goal is the most perfect, snow-white pure liberty. If you wish to subjugate liberty to ANYTHING, even to hedge it by eliminating 10% to save the remaining 90%, then you have made government more important than liberty and you are battling towards the other goal. "Liberty" and "rule of law" are opposites.

August 31, 2010 at 4:37 PM  
Anonymous PeaceableGuy said...

Restoring the Constitution to a semblance of the Founders' intent is just the first step. There are plenty of primary sources for discerning intent, and the US federal court system has willingly ignored and lied about such sources.

It is inconceivable that the federal government would peacefully return to the original Constitutional constraints, yet its blatant violations make it very easy to show to normal people that, yes, the current federal government is indeed a pack of literal criminals.

The Constitution itself being the product of a coup d'etat is not something most folks are willing to contemplate at this time, and thankfully not a necessary fact to convince folks that the current federal government is very nearly completely illegal.

August 31, 2010 at 6:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think Spooner covered many of these points some time ago...

The Articles seemed to better embody the Declaration than does the Constitution. It should perhaps be mentioned that the Articles were never rescinded. Never.

Agreed that if a branch of .gov is to decide the limits of same government, there are no limits.

I'm all for RTC to include only the Bill of Rights as a start point.

August 31, 2010 at 7:52 PM  
Blogger Concerned American said...

As I will make clear in a subsequent post, the "back to the Articles" formulation is not without major (fatal?) problems, including how one funds a 21st-century military under the 2.0 version of the Articles.

August 31, 2010 at 10:14 PM  
Anonymous Yank said...

I would like to see 2 amendments added immediately upon restoration:

One prohibiting lawyers from public service or appointment at any time and enacting restricting term limits.

Two making it a federal felony for any civil servant in any elected or appointed office in any federal, state, or local office to violate, by accident or intent, their duly sworn, before God, oath of office. Anyone found guilty of such a felony will be sentenced and have sentence executed within 24 hours without appeal by public hanging.

August 31, 2010 at 10:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Restore the Constitution" has a parallel in Church history: Christian primitivism.

Reflecting on an imperial and venal Papacy, some few honest souls sought a purer vision of church practice. They took for their model the early Apostolic church.

Getting from "here" to "there" required removing the accretion of several centuries of church councils, roughly comparable to USSC legal precedent in our present context.

This resulted in the Protestant Reformation. It also led to the Seventy Year War. (I don't doubt for a minute that the spirit of resistance demonstrated here would suffice for an assault against an automatic weapon emplacement).

There was wide variance among dissenting sects as to church polity but little doubt as to the propriety of breaking with Rome.

Were they successful in restoring the church to its original apostolic purity? This remains an open question but they did manage to create viable alternatives to the earlier arrangement of bureaucratic episcopacy.

So too, it is not necessary to restore the US Constitution to its original purity to get an increase in freedom. It can be done merely by breaking the central power's moral authority and financing mechanism. Repealing the 16th and 17th Amendments would be useful toward that end. Keep in mind that the end result could be a secular version of Europe's Seventy Year War and proceed accordingly.

MALTHUS

September 1, 2010 at 12:32 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Errata: for Seventy Year War read Thirty Year War.

MALTHUS

September 1, 2010 at 1:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have to agree with Daniel at 3:26,
we should spend more time doing the things we are told not to do. Time for more monkeywrenching and just defying the 86.3 million laws that nobody even knows exist.Read "Boston's Gun Bible", stop paying income taxes, stop buying permits for your canoe & 4wheeler, carry concealed whether you have a permit or not, put a rock through some asshole gov't officials car window, anything that requires gov't permission can be done without their permission, all you have to do is do it a few times and realize they don't have the right to deny you anything.You have to make the first move in your own step towards freedom, even a few baby steps at a time.

September 1, 2010 at 3:05 AM  
Anonymous Rollory said...

" At a minimum, a sane government would need to be stable over the span of two hundred years. That eliminates every historical example but Switzerland."

Uh, no. Medieval monarchies had dynasties that lasted long past that. The first dozen Capetian kings of France were uniformly competent, sane, long-lived, and each one left the country in better shape than he found it. The Bourbon kings mostly provided stable and competent government for at least a couple centuries also, after the disruptions of the religious wars; I haven't looked closely at the English timeline but I'm sure similar examples could be found there. The Persian monarchy provided a model of stability when compared to the upheavals surrounding the Roman imperial purple. China had all sorts of dynasties that lasted centuries. Egypt also.

If you meant a republic that is stable over two hundred years, that's different. Venice would be the go-to example in that case, although Rome's republican phase did last several centuries also.

In general though, monarchy is the default state of humanity.

September 1, 2010 at 3:36 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"the "back to the Articles" formulation is not without major (fatal?) problems, including how one funds a 21st-century military under the 2.0 version of the Articles."

You don't fund a 21st-century standing army under the 2.0 version of the Articles. That's the point. If you want to, then you're Hamilton.

"Two making it a federal felony for any civil servant in any elected or appointed office in any federal, state, or local office to violate, by accident or intent, their duly sworn, before God, oath of office."

I don't think that would have stopped the framers from replacing the Articles with the Constitution. Or Washington from squishing the Whisky Rebellion in order to get the war's backer's investments paid off. Or any version of the SCOTUS from changing the rules. FDR is rumored to have allowed Pearl to get bombed. Lincoln was a full-on military dictator. Who would have prosecuted Lincoln?

September 1, 2010 at 3:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Anon: Please take the time to ask questions, rather than make assumptions.

You are missing the point of the piece.
"

I think I get your point, and I disagree with it. Politics is the colder war, a variety of slavery. Politics cannot be reformed, only abolished. By framing your talk as if politics was a valid thing which can be reformed, you have conceded ALL of the anti-collectivist moral ground. Is there a divine right for some group to rule, or not? Is there a social contract, or not? Either you're an extreme libertarian, or you're a liberal imposing your rule on others. There is no middle ground. The Socialist, Fascist, Communist, and conservative constitutional positions believe the individual is owned by the collective. The Libertarian position believes the individual owns himself. The conservative and libertarian positions are not next door, they are separated by the grand canyon.

There is such a thing as proof by contradiction, where you talk about politics as a conversation opener, then lead the listener into a dead end canyon. This works slowly. Proof: You can't yet get MVB to respect a list of logical fallacies which are named in Latin because they've been known for thousands of years.

As for the fate of the "good" people who are collectivists because they know no better: think of the education wing of the freedom movement as a ocean liner docked at an island, just before the volcano blows. When the volcano commits an intolerable act, the ship steams. Everyone who stayed on the island because they don't understand volcanoes is lost. Will Bob the militia leader be among the lost? I don't know. I'll try to coax him onto the ship, but I will not kidnap him or lie to him about what's onboard.

September 1, 2010 at 4:05 AM  
Blogger Concerned American said...

Anon:

Your statment(s) assume that I am not an "extreme" libertarian.

I prefer the term "minarchist", as I still see the need for a robust national defense capability, even if it stationed closer to Major General Butler's thinking than the current imperial garrison. Sustainment of same (even with greatly diminished obligations) is a real sticking point within the "Return to the Articles" approach. I don't have an answer at present.

As a matter of persuasion, you will be more effective with about 500 less RPMs on the engine.

Really.

And you'll still get where you are going.

September 1, 2010 at 4:18 AM  
Anonymous James said...

Well if we know what has been done to change our course nearly 180 degrees since 1776, then a retreat to a restored constitution, with bill of rights, should not give you any fear. We know what to avoid.

It seems to me, as MALTHUS indicated, an elimination of several key ammendments and then a prevention of the re-creation of many executive cabinet departments would go a long way to re-establishing liberty and peace for the average American.

September 1, 2010 at 4:55 AM  
Anonymous Meadowlark said...

Concerned American,

While I really do have a great amount of respect for you, and for your viewpoint, I have to go with Anonymous on this one. There is no middle ground, as he says. Either the collective owns you (minarchism) or you own yourself (libertarian.) There is no such thing as a minarchist libertarian.

Either the locomotive engine drags you, or you decouple from it. There truly isn't a middle ground.

September 1, 2010 at 3:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Your statment(s) assume that I am not an "extreme" libertarian."

You want a standing army funded by taxation. You want a closed Southern border. You want to impose a government by force, according to a blueprint whose contents is decided by majority vote of the victorious restorational forces. Right? That's not the "night watchman state" Minarchist position, that's Republican, like Boortz.

The actual extreme libertarians are off working on how ideas unprotected by shrinkwrap contract from their creators can't be treated as real property. One centrally-planned rule for copyright is dead. I think intellectual property will stabilize when authors get honest about exactly what non-compete terms they want in order to share a book or a movie with you.

September 1, 2010 at 3:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon, you said:

By framing your talk as if politics was a valid thing which can be reformed, you have conceded ALL of the anti-collectivist moral ground. Is there a divine right for some group to rule, or not? Is there a social contract, or not? Either you're an extreme libertarian, or you're a liberal imposing your rule on others. There is no middle ground. The Socialist, Fascist, Communist, and conservative constitutional positions believe the individual is owned by the collective. The Libertarian position believes the individual owns himself. The conservative and libertarian positions are not next door, they are separated by the grand canyon.

My response:


By framing your talk as if politics was a valid thing which can be reformed, you have conceded ALL of the anti-collectivist moral ground.

You assume politics has failed, no ?
I rather posit that it's foundation, a common set of Moral assumptions, has been removed, thus it is failing.
Politics has run afoul of moral Truth, and is no replacement for it. Because Americans cannot now agree on a fundamental morality, politics is all that is left, and it cannot stand the strain. Politics, when it was informed by Christian Statesmanship, balanced the Liberty & Rights of the individual with the Liberty & Rights of the larger group of citizens - what was good for the one, was good for the many and formed a cohesive common culture.


Is there a divine right for some group to rule, or not?

Let Samuel Adams, leader of the Sons of Liberty & Christian Statesman, answer:

The natural liberty of man is to be free from any superior power on Earth, and not to be under the will or legislative authority of man, but only to have the law of nature for his rule.


Is there a social contract, or not?

Yes, but less and less so....without a common understanding of Right & Wrong, the contact is written in blurry ink. Natural Law is a general guide, but not explcit enough for some. It is subject to widely varying interpretation. It is rejected by consistent Humanists, as incompatible with evolving Law - see Elena Kagans recent refusal to acknowledge Natural Law, period. Humanism is generally Darwinistic, which means survival of the fittest, which means I can take your stuff if I can beat you up. So much for the 10 Commandments & 'Thou shalt Not Steal' !

Either you're an extreme libertarian, or you're a liberal imposing your rule on others.

Hold on. Help me understand, please. Are you saying that having a common moral code that men hold to in a society is the same as a violent imposition of external rules ? A kind of club you never asked to join, but are forced to ?

There is no middle ground. The Socialist, Fascist, Communist, and conservative constitutional positions believe the individual is owned by the collective. The Libertarian position believes the individual owns himself.

Are you implying total autonomous self-ownership, free even of Natural Law
constraints ?

If you answer yes, will you affirm that verbally to an armed man holding a gun to your head ?


(continued in part 2...)

September 1, 2010 at 5:00 PM  
Blogger CowboyDan said...

"I was a freaking drug war prosecutor fifteen years ago"

I wasn't, but I'd like to talk to the person who wrote that. I hope you've come over from the dark side, but that's a discussion for another day.

I am working an asset forfeiture case in Illinois. ALL of the underlying charges were dismissed, the marijuana charge for a bad search, and the CORA (Car Owner's Responsibility Assignment [local ordinance) charge because the guy showed up with a lawyer.

They want to keep his car and his cash. More big gov against the little people. They're P.O.'ed because the guy has the stones to stand up and ask for his stuff back.

One of these days, someone's gonna be really upset by this sort of thing and consider it their line in the sand.

It seems a small thing, a beater car and a few hundred bucks, but one more straw broke the camel's back...

September 1, 2010 at 5:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

CA "is a real sticking point within the "Return to the Articles" approach. I don't have an answer at present"

The red pill for me was definitely Hoppe's "The Myth of National Defense". There is a free PDF version to be found via google.

I consider myself an anrcho cap but could see using the boundaries of RTC as useful in the same context as British Torries that fought against Geoerge III. So I will concede that for myself.

In the wider philosophical context of freedom, democratic institutions will not be the answer in the long run.

In the non violent approach govt becomes obselete because it can not fund anything including the fire house and people are left to find private alternatives for everything including defense of a large geographic polity. The insurance model is one widely used as an example plus a free and well armed populace with no abusive central gov pissing off every potential terrorist the world over.

If I was to use MVB's approach I could say that not only are racists collectivists but so is evrybodly else that advocates for some type of state be it limited by a document or not. But I also know that all of us essentially know right from wrong.

These discussions are good.

September 1, 2010 at 7:21 PM  
Blogger Hollywood said...

I think it is catch marketing, and simple to explain.

The Constitution is not perfect, nor were the Founding Fathers, but it was pretty good......

"The Leave Us the F Alone Rally" doesn't have quite the same ring to it.

September 1, 2010 at 7:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

MALTHUS writes: "You were somewhere in your great-great-great-great-great grandfather's testicles when he agreed to the ratification of the Constitution, so yes, you signed it, too. ;^)"

The usual legal phrasing is "sold into slavery".

"To wit: If man is the source of law it presupposes man's nature is inherently lawful, making legislation unnecessary or superfluous but if man is the object of law it implies man is inherently unlawful and cannot be the source of universally valid, sovereign law."

I think you are claiming that man has no way to produce law that is less flawed than man is. On the contrary, the engineering profession is devoted to producing a more perfect result from less perfect ingredients. Such an improvement in law may be possible, too.

Temnota writes: "Where anarchists and fellow travelers screw themselves is in holding aloof from the process and declaring themselves sovereign and separate from all of this, ensuring that they will have no input into the creation of the inevitable state. Said state is usually not sympathetic to the anarchists' ideals, and absorbs them by force."

If the nationalistic Socialists are going to get me anyway, I'd rather be dragged kicking and screaming than looking pitifully in their windows and begging to be tossed a few scraps.

"The Constitution, for all its flaws and ultimate failure, managed to preserve a very high level of personal liberty in America for over 150 years."

Unless you were a woman, or black.

(more response tomorrow)

September 2, 2010 at 7:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon at September 1, 2010 5:00 PM: I'm sorry, but there is just too much myth to respond point by point at every level. Let me instead make this statement about what I believe.

The purpose of politics is organized crime, a protection racket to enrich people favored by the laws. Politics switched from kings to democracy because the king was too obviously a mob boss. I don't believe man's rights come from the Flying Spaghetti Monster, or Natural Rights, which is the same thing but calling the creator "nature" and saying we can't find him. Man is not "naturally" free, the inherent instinctural programming of man is for tribes and kings and wars and slavery. Perhaps that nature can be curbed by civilization. Rights are taken by self-defensive force, not granted by higher authority. I don't believe that legal words written on parchment are a magic spell; it seems to help, but not nearly enough. The middle class never knows how politics works, doesn't want to know, and wants to keep its head in the sand even while it is led off to the boxcars. The foundation of politics is not a common set of moral assumptions shared between the elite mobsters and their victims, that never exists except during the crash: the current loss of elite control is because the elites' children learned the progressive lessons meant to cripple the middle class. Game theory tells us that a population with a common set of moral assumptions will not arise, it is not stable against invasion: if too many people are using the "dove" strategy, that gives a large advantage to a person defecting to the "hawk" strategy. Balancing the Liberty & Rights of the individual with the Liberty & Rights of the larger group of citizens means throwing the individual woman to the street rape gang because that makes the total number of happy people go up. What is good for the most is not necessarily good for the one. Might does not make Right, Might makes Results; Right is much harder to determine than the winner of a battle or vote. The universe is Darwinistic. Most political theory is merely rationalization and apology for the current military balance of power. Kentucky long rifles vs. British squares yields lots of freedom; disarmed Jews in ghettos vs. Nazis yields less. I want to be free. I won't get to stay free by any means other than a successful military strategy for keeping the criminals at bay. If you want liberty, improve technologies for self-defense. Guns are a necessary part of a military strategy, but better self-defense weapons have been developed. If you are traffic stopped, wouldn't you like to have twenty friends receive an instant message with a GPS lat/long, and a live video feed of the proceedings even before the officer has walked up to your window? Then if the nice officer tells you that your muffler is dragging, you can say thank you without embarrassing consequences.

There! Is that cynical enough for you?

September 2, 2010 at 5:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"[T]he engineering profession is devoted to producing a more perfect result from less perfect ingredients.--Anon

Yes but the laws of physics are not of man's making, either.

MALTHUS

September 3, 2010 at 12:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Proof: You can't yet get MVB to respect a list of logical fallacies which are named in Latin because they've been known for thousands of years.--Anon

The logical fallacies have Latin names because the were codified by Catholic monks in the medieval era, hundreds of years after the birth of Christ.

Aristotle spoke and wrote in Greek hundreds of years before the Birth of Christ.

MALTHUS

September 3, 2010 at 12:10 PM  

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