Friday, October 30, 2009

Now here's a Constitutional Amendment I WOULD favor

To prevent so much statutory material from getting inserted into the Ohio Constitution, we need to make the amendment process more difficult. I would support amending Article XVI, Section 1 and Article II, Section 1b to require a three-fifths (60%) or two-thirds (66⅔%) vote, not a simple majority.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

What IS the truth about 9/11?

I didn't know the truth when I wrote this in September, and I still don't; however this evidence from a registered architect in San Francisco sounds pretty convincing, as reported by Stephanie Kraft, with the Valley Advocate, a weekly alternative newspaper in western Massachusetts.

In the lofty auditorium of Northampton's First Churches on October 10, an audience of perhaps 200 listened as San Francisco architect Richard Gage presented evidence that the World Trade Center's Twin Towers and WTC Building 7 were brought down on Sept. 11, 2001 by controlled demolition by planted explosive charges, not by the impact and resulting fires when the buildings were hit by hijacked airplanes.

Gage, a member of the AIA (American Institute of Architects) with 20 years' experience designing large gymnasiums and mixed-use structures, presented visuals showing that the longest documented skyscraper fires have never thrown a steel-framed building into total collapse, even fires that burned up to 18 hours (the towers fell less than two hours after the planes hit). He also showed that the cave-in from the centers and the straight descent of the towers at free-fall speed was visually similar to textbook cases of controlled demolition.

He showed that tangled fragments of steel girders were ejected as far as 400 and 600 feet from the lower parts of the towers, a phenomenon hard to explain unless they were propelled by active charges. He showed Building 7 collapsing straight downward in clouds of pyroclastic dust though it was never struck by the planes.

And he cited physical analysis purporting to prove that dust containing signature elements from the high-tech military explosive thermite covered New York after the explosion.

Please note that there is no attempt to theorize on the evidence, only to present it empirically; therefore, we are not dealing with a conspiracy theory here. What Mr. Gage wants, and Americans are entitled to, is an explanation of the events on 9/11 that takes these facts into account.

Virtual buckeye to Rob Williams at Vermont Commons.

On the lighter side...

Things have been getting awfully heavy around here, lately. Fortunately, my friend Bea Ready at the Ohio Freedom Alliance has provided an antidote I thought was hilarious. I hope you think so, too.

On the sign: "My Next Door Neighbor wants to BAN all GUNS! Their house is NOT ARMED! Out of RESPECT for their opinions, I promise NOT to use MY GUNS to PROTECT THEM."

Ohio and Kansas legislators want to nullify federal health care

From Ohio Free State:

Ohio State Senators Tim Grendell and Shannon Jones have introduced SJR 7, a State Constitutional Amendment “to prohibit a law or rule from compelling a person, employer, or health care provider to participate in a health care system.” If adopted by a majority of the electors voting on this proposal at a special election held February 2, 2010, Section 43 of Article II of the Constitution of the State of Ohio shall take effect immediately.

SJR 7 would deny the ability of any new law to impose demands, restrictions or penalties on health care choices on Ohioans. Versions of proposed federal health care reform legislation have included insurance coverage mandates, and certain penalties on employers who fail to provide employee health insurance.

SJR 7 states, in part:
(1) A law or rule shall not compel, directly or indirectly, any person, employer, or health care provider to participate in any health care system

(2) A person or employer may pay directly for lawful health care services and shall not be required to pay penalties or fines for paying directly for lawful health care services. A health care provider may accept direct payment for lawful health care services and shall not be required to pay penalties or fines for accepting direct payment from a person or employer for lawful health care services.

Sen. Grendell introduced Ohio's state sovereignty resolution SJR 13, which is currently languishing in the House State Government Committee. While I am not enthusiastic about adding more statutory material to the Ohio Constitution, it is clear that federal health care reform is unconstitutional under Article I, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution; but it appears from some news reports I have seen that leading Congressmen and Senators are Constitutionally illiterate. In this case, incorporating SJR7 into the Ohio Constitution will make it clear to all that the people of Ohio will support their General Assembly in nullification of federally-mandated health care.

Dion Lefler of the Wichita Eagle reports that Kansas legislators are considering an amendment to their state constitution to nullify federal health care insurance.

In a pre-emptive strike on national health care, conservative state lawmakers and representatives of the "tea party" movement on Tuesday proposed changing the state Constitution to exempt Kansas from federal health insurance mandates.

"This is about ... preserving (patients') right to make their own individual decisions on health care and protecting the doctor-patient relationship, so that the physician and the patient together can make the best decisions," Rep. Peggy Mast, R- Emporia, said at the Wichita kickoff for the proposition, to be known as the "Health Care Freedom Amendment."

Sen. Mary Pilcher Cook, R-Shawnee, said national health care reform legislation will be "harmful to Kansans, robbing them of their liberty to make their own health care decisions without government interference." Sen. Pilcher-Clark also introduced the Kansas state sovereignty resolution.

Kansas Democrats are launching a petition drive in opposition to the proposal.

Adoption of a Constitutional amendment will require a vote of two-thirds of the legislators in each house, and a majority vote of the electors.

Of course, it's not too late to nip health care reform in the bud by urging our U.S. congressmen and senators to oppose it.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Best government money can buy

Repeating my post from October 6, 2008, here is a list of major contributors to President Obama's campaign as of that date:

Goldman Sachs $739,521
Citigroup Inc $492,548
Google Inc $487,355
JPMorgan Chase & Co $475,112
UBS AG $419,550
Lehman Brothers $391,774
Sidley Austin LLP $370,916
Skadden, Arps et al $360,409
Morgan Stanley $341,380
Latham & Watkins $328,879

Notice any interesting patterns? Should we be surprised that he has been bought by the New York bankers?

Secession may be the only way to get out from under the bankers

So says Dan Weintraub at Vermont Commons:

I think it may be time for us to leave The Union. I'm not happy about this. But the truth cannot be ignored. In the United States of America, it is the banks that are running the show. And as long as the banks run the show, despite the best efforts of the most righteous women and men, true political and social and environmental reform cannot occur.
[As] far as I can see, the only way to cast away the banks and the bankers and the usury and exploitation from our lives and from our hearts is to create a new system---a system in which the usurers and the fraudsters are simply not welcome. It may be time to seriously examine the role that secession politics might play in, once and for all, releasing us from the grip of a banking system that creates wealth for a few and poverty and suffering for the rest.

History shows that sustainable economies require a fixed store of value on which to the money, usually precious metals such as gold or silver. Fiat currency (not wholly backed by that fixed store of money) fails. Every time. It's only human nature -- print more and more until it becomes worthless.

Consequences of living in a warrior nation

Charley Reese wrote this in 2006. It was recently reposted in It is well worth quoting in full:

War consists of killing people and destroying property. That's all there is to war. Any honest soldier will tell you the same thing: His job is to kill people and destroy property. That's true of all branches of the service.

The difficult question is, When is a nation justified in making the decision to kill other people and destroy their property? I think the rule is the same as it is for individuals. You are justified in killing only in defense of your own life or the lives of others for whom you are responsible.

By that definition, the U.S. has fought only one justified war in this and the past century. That was World War II. Putting aside the fact that the U.S. government provoked Japan into attacking, attack it did, and the U.S. had a right to respond. We were not attacked, however, in Korea, Vietnam, Libya, Lebanon, Panama, Grenada, Yugoslavia, Afghanistan or Iraq.

In Korea and Vietnam, we intervened in a civil war as two sides of a divided country fought for supremacy. We bombed Libya in a reprisal raid for a terrorist attack in Germany. Reprisals, in World War II, were considered war crimes. We weren't attacked by Lebanon. In Panama, we attacked to change the government. I don't really know why we attacked Grenada. The pretense was that it was building an airport that could handle Soviet airplanes. I suspect it was really a political ploy designed for domestic consumption.

I don't know why we decided to bomb Yugoslavia. That, again, was a civil war that should not have concerned us. The now-late Slobodan Milosevic was only trying to do what Abraham Lincoln did – prevent the secession of states from Yugoslavia. Our problem in Afghanistan was not the Taliban government. It was al-Qaida. We overthrew the Taliban government but failed to destroy al-Qaida. Only God and George Bush know why we attacked Iraq. That was clearly a war of aggression, no different from the German invasion of Poland in the 1930s.

It's ironic that the president likes to claim to be promoting peace, when we are the most warlike nation on Earth and the one with the largest war-department budget. We are also the biggest arms peddler in the world. It seems there is no country on Earth that's immune to U.S. officials telling it how to run its internal affairs.

The problem is that war, except in self-defense, is a total waste. Human lives are wasted. Accumulated wealth is wasted. The results of war are debt, taxation, human sorrow and human bitterness. The billions of dollars we spend killing other people and destroying their property are billions that can't be spent on improving education, America's infrastructure, the health of our people and preserving our land, water and air. [Emphasis added]

Wars also destroy truth and trust with their secrecy and propaganda. Instead of patriotism, which is a love of the land and the people, the war state substitutes jingoism, which is a love of the government and support of war. In America today, both liberals and neoconservatives have been corrupted by the imperialist war state. The liberals are too cowardly to oppose unjustified wars, and the neoconservatives instigate and applaud them.

It is a triumph of imperial war-state propaganda that people are afraid they will be called unpatriotic if they oppose their government's foreign wars and their domestic

Well, a continuation of the present policy will eventually destroy America. We are already $8 trillion in debt.** Most of the world views us as a rogue nation. Our manufacturing base is being depleted, not to mention our natural resources. Our education system is sick. Our culture is decadent. Our government is corrupt.

It's no longer a question of supporting or not supporting any particular administration. It's a question of survival. Those who value liberty and the rule of law and believe that foreign policy should be based on the Golden Rule had better assert themselves now.

It's time for Ohioans to start thinking like an independent nation...!

Virtual buckeye to amyers68 at the Ohio Freedom Alliance.

* I said essentially the same thing in a
speech in May.

** Now more than $11 trillion -- officially. Counting unfunded liabilities such as future payments by Social Security and Medicare, the figure balloons to more than $65 trillion -- more than all the money in the world. The U.S. is obviously bankrupt to everyone except ourselves. U.S. bonds carry little real value, the Chinese think the U.S. Government is a poor credit risk, and it's not getting any better...

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

No, no, and no -- from another source

The Ohio Freedom Alliance and I are often on the same page, but the voices behind their nos have additional knowledge of their subjects.

Monday, October 26, 2009

A world of sissies

In November 1993, Ms. magazine (published by the radical feminist organization NOW) ran a feature article with a cover photo of a baby boy, with the headline, "It's a Boy: Now What?" It appears that they won't have to worry much longer...

According to the [London] Telegraph, research conducted by the Danish Government and confirmed by studies elsewhere indicates that a number of common chemicals are causing male births to decline in many advanced industrial nations. In areas with heavy concentrations of chemical plants, birth rates of two girls for each boy have been reported. (Normally, there are around 106 boys born for each 100 girls -- believed to be to account for losses of males due to hunting accidents and war). Boys born in these areas have reduced sperm counts, and even feminine behavior:

Research at Rotterdam's [Netherlands] Erasmus University found that boys whose mothers were exposed to PCBs and dioxins were more likely to play with dolls and tea sets and dress up in female clothes.

Yet gender-benders are largely exempt from new EU regulations controlling hazardous chemicals. Britain, then under Tony Blair's premiership, was largely responsible for this – restricting their inclusion in the first draft of the legislation, and then causing even what was included to be watered down.Confidential documents show that it did so after pressure from George W Bush's administration, which protested that US exports "could be impacted".

Sounds like slow genocide to me.

Virtual buckeye to Stephen Hopkins at Ohio Freedom Alliance.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Quotation of the Day

"Invariably, a wise and liberal communication of liberty has the effect of appeasing instead of inflaming the passions. But more than this, where the population only feels the pressure of their government, they are apt to herd together like miserable sheep; they are unconscious of any other danger than that which stares them in the face and take little or no account of each other's actions, although these exercise so wide and so constant an influence upon the public weal. I think if anyone will follow carefully and minutely the workings of American society, he will find that the people are as much occupied in keeping each other in order as they are in checking the authority of their governments. It is only by doing the first that they succeed in doing the last."
-- Frederick Grimke, The Nature and Tendency of Free Institutions
(1968 ed., p. 197).
In other words, free society promotes personal responsibility. Good behavior is more effectively fostered by social pressure than by the police.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

How to brainwash a nation

Back in 1985, G. Edward Griffin (author of The Creature from Jekyll Island) interviewed Yuri Bezmenov, a defector from the USSR and former KGB agent. During the interview, Mr. Bezmenov described in detail a systematic process that the Soviets followed for breaking down opposition in other nations over a period of time.

The process is still taking place here, and judging from Mr. Bezmenov's comments, is nearly completed. Please take 9 minutes and hear what he has to say.

Virtual buckeye to Sebastian Ronin.

Friday, October 23, 2009

John and Jacqueline Stowers, you are not alone...

Since Manna Storehouse, government raids are becoming legion, as evidenced by this collection of horrors from Ohio blogger Pro Libertate.

Pro Libertate suggests that these experiences increase the urgency of the Oath Keepers mission:

This state of affairs suggests a vitally important mission for the movement called "Oath Keepers" -- an association of retired and active-duty law enforcement and military personnel who define their allegiance in terms of fidelity to the Constitution, rather than loyalty or obedience to political officials.As men committed to the Constitution, Oath Keepers have made it clear that there are at least ten specific kinds of orders they will not obey -- orders to disarm American civilians, conduct warrantless searches, blockade or interdict American cities, invade and subjugate states that assert their reserved powers and constitutional sovereignty, subject citizens to military tribunals, enforce martial law decrees, or otherwise undermine or infringe upon the constitutionally guaranteed individual rights of Americans.Oath Keepers founder Stewart Rhodes explains that Oath Keepers will stand down rather than carry out such illegal orders, and be prepared to defend law-abiding citizens against the aggression of a lawless government.

May their numbers increase!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

More on the People's Constitution Coalition

As reported by Cheryl S. Splain in Wednesday's Mount Vernon News: (black areas are my comments)

MOUNT VERNON — State sovereignty is not a new idea, but it has become more important because of what many perceive to be the continual encroachment by the federal government into states’ affairs. Efforts are under way in Ohio to settle the issue once and for all.

Spearheaded by Mount Vernon resident Michael Young, the Peoples Constitution Coalition of Ohio is working on a proposed sovereignty amendment to the Ohio Constitution. “The purpose of the amendment is to state the specific relationship between the state, people and government,” said Young. “It puts the sovereignty issue into law, and mandates Ohio’s government to protect the state from the federal government.”

The 10th amendment to the U.S. Constitution states the powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states, or to the people.
“States are sovereign over the federal government except for a few items specifically delegated to the federal government,” said Young, using the analogy of a homeowner hiring a plumber.

“You hire him to fix the sink,” said Young, “but he’s not authorized to raid your refrigerator, answer the phone or spank your kids. So, too, with government. When government operates outside of those duties [delegated], we have a right and a duty to hold them accountable.

Nice analogy.

“With the speed that the federal government is moving right now with health care
legislation, cap and trade, and the stimulus programs, it’s moving so quickly people can’t catch their breath to realize what is going on,” he continued. “It’s the duty of the states to protect their citizens from federal abuse.”

So fast, that I hope there will be enough time for the process to be carried out. If the US Senate ratifies the Copenhagen Treaty, we will have to fast-forward to secession.

“As an Ohioan, you should want this kind of protection ... because there’s a lot of abuses that would disappear,” he said. “The federal board of education* is completely unconstitutional because nothing in the federal constitution grants that power. That’s reserved to the states.”

Other areas the federal government is involved with that are unconstitutional, said Young, include gun control laws and forced vaccinations.

Young said there’s no law that requires the Legislature to make sure a bill is constitutional when it is passed.

“To my mind, that is absolutely ludicrous,” he said. “The constitution is the authority; you would assume they would comply with that authority. But there is no language in the constitution that mandates government comply with it.”

The proposed amendment, he said, would remove all of the ambiguity and remove the loophole where ignorance of the constitution is no longer an excuse.

However, as I pointed out Monday, there is a limit on how much a document can do. The Founding Fathers thought the US Constitution put a straitjacket around the federal government. If the will to enforce the Constitution is not present, the words won't matter much.

The coalition is hosting a meeting Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Senior Citizen Center in Fredericktown, to bring awareness of state sovereignty and the proposed amendment. Doors will open at 9 a.m.; seating is limited.

In addition to Young talking about the proposed amendment, speakers include Dr. Frederick Graves, creator of Jurisdictionary legal self-help program, who will speak on “Rule of law: How to use the mechanisms of law and government to hold government accountable”; Sen. Timothy Grendell, who is backing SCR-13, an Ohio sovereignty resolution, through the Ohio Senate; and Warren Edstrom, co-creator of The Voices of America project, who will discuss how the people of Ohio can have their voices heard by government.

“Our main goals right now are to draft a proposed amendment and simultaneously start organizing the people of Ohio so they are aware of what we are doing,” said Young. “Our meeting Saturday is to help promote building that network.

“People are starting to become aware of this,” he continued. “So far, we have had an acceptance level of 99 percent. People are ready for some positive change for the better.”

The coalition’s goal is to have the amendment on the November 2010 ballot.

As I indicated on Monday, the goals of the People's Constitution Coalition are admirable, but I have some serious qualms about the specifics of their proposed amendments.

* Mr. Young meant Department of Education

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The Left bites back

Here is a column by Robert S. Becker at BeyondChron, an alternative newspaper in San Francisco. Note how it applies the usual liberal technique of namecalling in an attempt to discredit the tea party and secessionist movements. Besides confusing libertarianism with neoconservatism, the article sneers at the small-town yokels who dare to oppose the agenda the American people voted in last November! (Of course, the American people didn't vote all this in, it just wanted George Bush and his gang out!)

Here is a sample:

We’re growing strange species of anti-American reactionaries these days. Earlier, arrogant Ugly Americans strutting abroad were always brash cheerleaders for their Homeland. Today, scores of deluded, unpatriotic numbskulls equate good citizenship with debunking America, especially: (a) our legitimate elections (despite pushing remote “democracy” wars), (b) majority rule (taking over “their” government), (c) the President (subversive alien),* (d) government programs (rank socialism), and (e) free-market media except FOX “News” and rabid talk radio. How do teabaggers with infantile hoaxes** hope to get “their country back”?

Thus frustrated fringes get fringier every week, like crazed chickens bloodying their own. South Carolina whiners blasted hardcore Lindsey Graham for not being hardcore enough, crying out “fake Republican,” “traitor” and “war criminal.” ... Historic Ugly Americans, bragging the U.S. of A. was God’s gift to mankind, would look with horror on unpatriotic ingrates. For them, America was perfect, so blameless any crank nations daring to oppose our global manifest destiny invited retribution – producing harangues on evildoers, boycotts, even assassinations and uprisings (Chile and Iran). Typically, our government fabricated threats or disruptions before sending in armed troops to “restore peace.” The pre-emptive “Bush Doctrine” long preceded Iraq, in Panama, Somalia, and elsewhere: others just did it better.

Obviously, the writer is so wrapped in his ideology, that he lacked the desire to research a more nuanced article. You have to give this much to the liberals: they are honest about their beliefs and objectives. I'm not sure I can say the same for the neocons.

* I am not endorsing the "birther" arguments, but I submit that they haven't been disproven, either.

** Read the link, and decide for yourself who is being "infantile".

Tennessee Representative calls for "working group" of the states

From the Tenth Amendment Center:

Susan Lynn, the author of Tennessee's state sovereignty resolution, has written a call to her fellow state legislators across the nation to form a "working group" to "call for a joint working group between the states to enumerate the abuses of authority by the federal government," and to "seek repeal of the assumption of powers and the imposed mandates."

The Tennessee legislature adopted this call as HJR 108. Here is the text of the call in full:

We send greetings from the Tennessee General Assembly. On June 23, 2009, House Joint Resolution 108, the State Sovereignty Resolution, was signed by Governor Phil Bredesen. The Resolution created a committee which has as its charge to:
- Communicate the resolution to the legislatures of the several states,
- Assure them that this State continues in the same esteem of their friendship,
- Call for a joint working group between the states to enumerate the abuses of authority by the federal government, and
- Seek repeal of the assumption of powers and the imposed mandates.

It is for those purposes that this letter addresses your honorable body.

In 1776, our founding fathers declared our freedom in the magnificent Declaration of Independence; our guide to governance. They established a nation of free and independent states. Declaring that the purpose of our political system is to secure
for its citizens’ their natural rights. The Constitution authorizes the national government to carry out seventeen enumerated powers in Article 1, Section 8 and the powers of several of the ensuing amendments.

At the time of the Constitutional ratification process James Madison drafted the “Virginia Plan” to give Congress general legislative authority and to empower the
national judiciary to hear any case that might cause friction among the states, to give the congress a veto over state laws, to empower the national government to use the military against the states, and to eliminate the states’ accustomed role in selecting members of Congress. Each one of these proposals was soundly defeated. In fact, Madison made many more attempts to authorize a national veto over state laws, and these were repeatedly defeated as well.

There are clear limits to the power of the federal government and clear realms of power for the states. However, the simple and clear expression of purpose, to secure our natural rights, has evolved into the modern expectation that the national government has an obligation to ensure our life, to create our liberty, and fund our pursuit of happiness.

The national government has become a complex system of programs whose purposes lie outside of the responsibilities of the enumerated powers and of securing our natural rights; programs that benefit some while others must pay.

Today, the federal government seeks to control the salaries of those employed by private business, to change the provisions of private of contracts, to nationalize banks, insurers and auto manufacturers, and to dictate to every person in the land what his or her medical choices will be.

Forcing property from employers to provide healthcare, legislating what individuals are and are not entitled to, and using the labor of some so that others can receive money that they did not earn goes far beyond securing natural rights, and the enumerated powers in the Constitution.

The role of our American government has been blurred, bent, and breached. The rights endowed to us by our creator must be restored.

To be sure, the People created the federal government to be their agent for certain enumerated purposes only. The Constitutional ratifying structure was created so it would be clear that it was the People, and not the States, that were doing the ratifying.

The Tenth Amendment defines the total scope of federal power as being that which has been delegated by the people to the federal government, and also that which is absolutely necessary to advancing those powers specifically enumerated in the Constitution of the United States. The rest is to be handled by the state governments, or locally, by the people themselves.

The Constitution does not include a congressional power to override state laws. It does not give the judicial branch unlimited jurisdiction over all matters. It does not provide Congress with the power to legislate over everything. This is verified by the simple fact that attempts to make these principles part of the Constitution were soundly rejected by its signers.

With this in mind, any federal attempt to legislate beyond the Constitutional limits of Congress’ authority is a usurpation of state sovereignty - and unconstitutional.

Governments and political leaders are best held accountable to the will of the people when government is local. The people of a state know what is best for them; authorities, potentially thousands of miles away, governing their lives is opposed to the very notion of freedom.

We invite your state to join with us to form a joint working group between the states to enumerate the abuses of authority by the federal government and to seek repeal of the assumption of powers and the imposed mandates.

In light of the proposed Copenhagen Treaty, it is very late in the day to be considering such a proposal, especially since many state legislatures are out of session for the year; but any path that will enable the United States to survive as a Constitutional republic is worth pursuing; and we should contact our state representatives and senators to show our support.

Monday, October 19, 2009

The Godfather: Life imitates art

To those who argue that the Constitution forbids secession, I often reply that in their logic, ratifying the Constitution is like joining the Mafia -- you can join, but you will never leave it alive.

Dan Weintraub at Vermont Commons carries this analogy further, calling it "Sopranoland". He points out that President Obama has given a great speech about regulating the banking system, while doing nothing about it. The reason? The U.S. economy depends on keeping up the fraud perpetrated by the Wall Street bankers -- literally, a Ponzi scheme:

You see, if our leaders REALLY believed in true reform of the financial industry, they wouldn't create obstacles to the imposition of such reforms. Why aren't banks being forced to put all of their assets on the books? Why are the banks allowed to value their assets NOT to the marketplace but to pure fantasy? Why are OTC products like CDS still being traded when it is those very unregulated OTC products that precipitated, to a great extent, the coming of this economic crisis? Why is there opposition to auditing the Federal Reserve when it is the Federal Reserve who---through its "open market" operations---has dished out trillions of dollars in tax-payer monies in an effort to save the very banks that have brought the nation to its fiscal knees? Why is the FHA helping to originate mortgages that, like their subprime cousins, lack any reasonable expectations with regard to upfront capital requiremements for incipient homeowners??

However, like all Ponzi schemes, this one will eventually (or more likely, very soon) crash. This is yet another reason why Ohio needs to start thinking like an independent nation!

People's Constitutional Amendments -- mostly not a good idea

I do not like to write negatively about the work of colleagues who seek to restore our Constitutional liberties, but I have some serious concerns about a series of amendments to the Ohio Constitution being proposed by the People's Constitutional Coalition of Ohio.

The group wants to place some thirteen amendments to the Constitution on the ballot next year, which they believe will help protect the sovereignty of the state from further federal intrusion. The amendment text is too long to detail here; but in general, they want to:
- add a supremacy clause to the Ohio Constitution to make explicit that it is the fundamental law;
- emphasize that the state exists for the people;
- assert that "the state of Ohio shall operate as a free and independent republic within the [United States of America];
- specifically limit the powers of state government;
- explicitly state that laws that are contrary to the Constitution are null and void;
- assert a duty by state officials to protect Ohioans from the abuse of federal powers; and
- make abuses by Ohio officials criminal offenses.

We need to take great care when considering amendments to the Constitution; but unlike the three ballot amendments up this November, the amendments being proposed here are Constitutional law.

The proposal as written suffers from some serious flaws:
- Portions of the proposed amendments duplicate provisions already in the Ohio Constitution, especially Article I, Section 2; Article I, Section 20; Article II, Section 28; and Article IV, Section 2(B)(2)(a)(iii). Their proposed prohibition on compacts and treaties duplicates Article I, Section 10, clauses 1 and 3, of the U.S. Constitution.

- The "free and independent republic" provision will be interpreted by most Ohio voters as secessionist. We're not ready for such strong language -- and if introduced, this phrase alone is likely to sink the whole proposal.

- The sections on protecting Ohioans from federal abuses and establishing "high crimes" for abuses by state officials are asking a lot of a Constitution. As we are learning from current hard experience, a Constitution is only as strong as the will of the people and their elected officials to enforce it.

- Section 12 of the proposal contains this text: "All provisions of this Constitution and Ohio laws, rules, regulations, and other governing provisions shall be created, altered, revised, repealed, interpreted, and enforced to comply with this Article." As written, the section is unenforceable. What they are proposing, in fact, is a rewrite of the entire Ohio Revised Code, an effort that would take several years, and a great deal of legal manpower.

Here is my alternative: two new sections and some transitional provisions to the Ohio Constitution which address the objections stated above much more simply and workably:

ARTICLE I: Bill of Rights
§21. Purpose of the Ohio Constitution

The Ohio Constitution implements the sovereign will of the people of Ohio for the establishment and operation of their government. It constitutes the fundamental controlling instrument upon which all powers and authorities of the state are dependent, and without which the state shall not act. This Constitution is subject only to the Constitution of the United States and all laws and treaties established under, and in compliance with, the Constitution of the United States. Neither the General Assembly nor any official of the State of Ohio, or any of its subdivisions, may establish any law, rule, or regulation that is contrary to the expressed provisions of this Constitution, or of the Constitution of the United States.

ARTICLE II – Legislative--
§15. Purposes Well Defined

The General Assembly shall make no law that does not contain in its introductory text the following in clear and succinct language:
(A) Identification of the specific provisions of this Constitution, which authorize this law.
(B) A statement of the purpose of the law.
(C) If the law is being enacted as an emergency: A clear statement of the emergency, how the law addresses that emergency, and upon what reasonably attainable conditions said emergency will cease.
(D) A date, not more than ten years from enactment, before which the law shall be reconsidered by the General Assembly for revision or repeal.

Transitional Provision (not numbered as a section)
Article II, Section 15, and the following provision shall take effect on the first day of January following their adoption by the people of the State of Ohio in a general election:

The General Assembly shall pass laws providing for the review of all laws, regulations, and ordinances of this State and its subdivisions at the time this provision becomes effective, for the purpose of identifying and repealing those which are found to be obsolete or in conflict with this Constitution. Such review shall be completed within six years of the adoption of this section. The General Assembly shall consider the results of this review, and complete consideration of items recommended for repeal within four years of its receipt of the recommendations.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Copenhagen Treaty threatens end to American sovereignty

I'm beginning to worry about sounding like Peter crying "Wolf!" The last few weeks have carried with them so many alarming developments that I fear that the alarms are beginning to sound routine. Still, this one will be ignored at our peril.

On Thursday, I mused that the media concentrate on one subject in order to hide activity in another. You will notice that little has been said about the environment in the last week or so; and here may be the reason: Walter Scott Hudson, at the blog Fightin' Words, has transcribed an audio recording of closing remarks by Lord Christopher Monckton at an event sponsored by the Minnesota Free Market Institute in St. Paul Wednesday evening, before an audience of 700 persons. I am normally leery of reporting anything that is not backed up by an account in the mainstream media. I am making an exception here because Lord Monckton (Google) is an established critic of global warming, the accounts I have read cite the proposed treaty, and the remarks are consistent with my understanding of the issues. A video and additional information are available from the Minnesota Free Market Institute website.

At [the 2009 United Nations Climate Change Conference in] Copenhagen, this December, weeks away, a treaty will be signed. Your president will sign it. Most of the third world countries will sign it, because they think they’re going to get money out of it. Most of the left-wing regime from the European Union will rubber stamp it. Virtually nobody won’t sign it.

I read that treaty. And what it says is this, that a world government is going to be created. The word “government” actually appears as the first of three purposes of the new entity. The second purpose is the transfer of wealth from the countries of the West to third world countries, in satisfication of what is called, coyly, “climate debt” – because we’ve been burning CO2 and they haven’t. We’ve been screwing up the climate and they haven’t. And the third purpose of this new entity, this government, is enforcement.

How many of you think that the word “election” or “democracy” or “vote” or “ballot” occurs anywhere in the 200 pages of that treaty? Quite right, it doesn’t appear once. So, at last, the communists who piled out of the Berlin Wall and into the environmental movement, who took over Greenpeace so that my friends who funded it left within a year, because [the communists] captured it – Now the apotheosis as at hand. They are about to impose a communist world government on the world. You have a president who has very strong sympathies with that point of view. He’s going to sign it. He’ll sign anything. He’s a Nobel Peace Prize [winner]; of course he’ll sign it.

And the trouble is this; if that treaty is signed, if your Constitution says that it takes precedence over your Constitution (sic), and you can’t resign from that treaty unless you get agreement from all the other state parties – And because you’ll be the biggest paying country, they’re not going to let you out of it.

So, thank you, America. You were the beacon of freedom to the world. It is a privilege merely to stand on this soil of freedom while it is still free. But, in the next few weeks, unless you stop it, your president will sign your freedom, your democracy, and your humanity away forever. And neither you nor any subsequent government you may elect will have any power whatsoever to take it back. That is how serious it is. I’ve read the treaty. I’ve seen this stuff about [world] government and climate debt and enforcement. They are going to do this to you whether you like it or not.

This is not quite correct. A treaty still has to be ratified by two-thirds of the Senate (U.S. Constitution, Article II, Section 2).

But I think it is here, here in your great nation, which I so love and I so admire – it is here that perhaps, at this eleventh hour, at the fifty-ninth minute and fifty-ninth second, you will rise up and you will stop your president from signing that dreadful treaty, that purposeless treaty. For there is no problem with climate and, even if there were, an economic treaty does nothing to [help] it.

So I end by saying to you the words that Winston Churchill addressed to your president in the darkest hour before the dawn of freedom in the Second World War. He quoted from your great poet Longfellow:

Sail on, O Ship of State!
Sail on, O Union, strong and great!
Humanity with all its fears,
With all the hopes of future years,
Is hanging breathless on thy fate!

We need to make sure our Senators hear us loud and clear. This treaty must never be ratified by the United States!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Why the H1N1 vaccine won't work

While I don't always agree with the political slant of The Atlantic, the magazine does produce some outstanding (and rare) examples of investigative journalism. I commend to you an article in the November Atlantic (also at newsstands) by Shannon Brownlee and Jeanne Lenzer. It is a long read, but well worth the time.

They explain why the virus is being promoted on the basis of faulty science, and produce some impressive scientific evidence of their own to back this up. Their argument is that people who take vaccines are those who are careful about their health in other ways. The vaccine, however, adds nothing to other measures (e.g., diet, personal hygiene) that such people employ to take care of themselves.

Vaccines for seasonal flu have been developed for years. In at least two years, the vaccine failed to address the flu that developed. The mortality rate for flu in those two years (1957 and 1968) was no higher than in other years.

Thus, as I explained earlier (here and here), the vaccine might prove to be more dangerous than the disease it is designed to protect.

Virtual buckeye to Ben Sariwatta at the Ohio Freedom Alliance.

Smoke and mirrors

Has anyone else noticed how the mainstream media have been running cycles of news around the topics of the H1N1 virus, health care, Afghanistan, and the economy? Several writers in the libertarian blogosphere have been warning that when the media hypes up one topic, we need to pay attention to what is really going on with the others.

While we talked about the H1N1 virus, Congress was marking up the health care bills. While the media hyped the health care crisis, President Obama was considering troop increases in Afghanistan. While the media hyped Afghanistan/Pakistan, the stock market rose (which I believe will be only temporary). And when the stock market hit 10,000 -- who knows what's going on in one of the other fronts?

Obviously, there is movement on all four fronts, and news will be reported as it occurs. My point is that the media do not care to investigate or analyze anything. Instead, it seems to be more in their interest to use one topic to conceal what is going on in another.

Since we cannot trust the mainstream media, we have to put more effort into understanding what is really going on.

"Eternal vigilance by the people is the price of liberty." -- Thomas Jefferson

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

No, no, and no.

When it comes to state ballot issues, I am a tough customer to please. I expect amendments to the Ohio Constitution to deal with constitutional matters, and not specific issues such as casino gambling and livestock welfare. I expect the Ohio Constitution to be flexible enough to enable the General Assembly or the people of Ohio to enact statutes to deal with specific issues, which may be modified or repealed when needed without having to return to the voters.

The Ohio Constitution is littered with amendments like the ones we are considering Nov. 3. Amendments to Article VIII alone make up one-third of the bulk of the document, and were inserted there because voters found the original language having to do with contracting debt to be excessively rigid.

The overall experience suggests (1) that the Ohio Constitution needs to grant the General Assembly broader powers to create debt, on the condition that contracting such debts must receive a favorable majority vote in a referendum; and (2) the Ohio Constitution needs to be made more difficult to amend. One idea would be to require a supermajority (say three-fifths) to vote Yes before an amendment is added to the Constitution. With these two reforms, we could streamline the Constitution and ensure that future ballot issues be considered only on their merits.

Issue 1 is to create a "sinking fund" to pay bonuses to veterans of the Persian Gulf, Iraq, and Afghanistan wars. I sympathize with those who believe that veterans should receive appreciation for their service to country; but, as things stand now, veterans support should be placed squarely in the hands of the federal government. The feds sent them to war, let the feds reward them. The state is not in a financial position to do anything as luxurious as making payments to veterans; and the provision does not belong in the Constitution, as I stated earlier. However, Ohioans have done this for veterans of every war since World War I, so I expect to lose this battle.

Issue 2 is to create a Livestock Care Standards Board. Ohio has more than 400 boards and commissions. Why do we need one for this purpose? The idea is noble enough. We want our farm animals to be humanely treated (which by the way, will result in a better quality of food), but why can't we just set the standards in the Ohio Revised Code, and let the Attorney General sue those who are in violation? Why do we have to establish a bureaucracy? There is also some evidence to suggest that this is an attempt by agribusiness to circumvent the more stringent standards that would likely follow an investigation by the American Humane Society slated for next year. This argument was well presented by Patricia A. Powers in a letter to the editor of the Columbus Dispatch Oct. 10.

Issue 3 is to erect casinos in Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, and Toledo. I am personally opposed to any casinos in the State of Ohio. Not only is it immoral for the state to make millions of dollars off the weaknesses of its people*, it is bad public policy, because those who do fall prey to gambling addiction will require social services at taxpayer expense. In addition, taxpayers end up footing large bills for additional police security that comes from an increase in criminal activity around casinos.

The proponents of Issue 3 cite the impact the casinos will have on the Ohio economy. I don't believe their numbers are realistic (35,000 new jobs in only four casinos?); but experience with our lottery and of casinos in other states shows that the revenues received usually prove to be less than projected.

If these arguments against Issue 3 do not persuade you, maybe this one will. Your adoption of Issue 3 will essentially grant a monopoly to one large corporation to operate four casinos in Ohio (the ballot language even gives the addresses where they are to be located!). Why should any one enterprise be granted such a favor? If we must have casinos in Ohio, why not open it up to free enterprise – anyone can operate a casino as long as they follow the appropriate regulations and pay the taxes? Wouldn't consumers benefit from competition among casinos, just as they benefit from competition in everything else? Don't want a casino in your backyard? Make it subject to a form of local option, as we do with bars and carryouts for liquor.

However, we wouldn't even be discussing this as a Constitutional amendment if Ohioans had not repeatedly made it clear that we don't want casino gambling in this state! Obviously, the big gambling interests are hoping that they will wear us down. Another triumph of greed over sound policy.

Official information from the Secretary of State on the ballot issues.

* The state already does this with the lottery and the cigarette and alcohol taxes. I would cheerfully vote for repeal of the lottery; but can live with the excise taxes as a better (if less productive) way to raise revenues than, say, the income tax; but I'm not confident that I'll see any changes in the foreseeable future.

Update Oct. 14: Joe Hallett of the Columbus Dispatch wrote an excellent column last Sunday strengthening my position on Issue 3, in which he notes the harmful effect that casinos have on neighboring businesses, particularly in areas like Columbus' Arena District or Cleveland's The Flats.

Quotation of the day

From my friend Sebastian Ronin:

"The free election of the masters by the slaves does not eliminate the master-slave relationship."

New from Homeland Security

... via InfoWars and Rebellion, further confirmation that we right-wing extremists need to be watched as potential terrorists:

When are we going to say "Enough!" ? Or will we?

Monday, October 12, 2009

Tear gas? That's so twentieth century!

Ohio author Mike Ferner catalogs for an impressive (and sickening) list of tools available to police agencies to "control" crowds peacefully protesting against the Feds. A few of them were used in Pittsburgh during the recent G-20 conference (the same occasion President Obama used to advise us in Ohio that recovery will take 20 more years).

Some of the tools include:
- Bean bags fired from shotguns
- Long Range Acoustic Device (LRAD). This is mounted on the turret of an armored personnel carrier. It blasts a "shrill, piercing noise like a high-pitched siron on steroids." It is so irritating that people are soon swept off the streets. Mr. Ferner describes the police as being in "full riot gear looking like darkly threatening Michelin Men, made for a scene out of a movie you didn’t want to be in."
- The "Active Denial System" that emits a high-energy beam to create an intolerable sensation like that of a hot iron pressed against the skin.
- The "puke ray", which distributes light in colors and rhythm in such a way as to temporarily blind and disorient the victim, then make him nauseous.
- "Spider silk", a means for entangling people.
- The piezer, which 'uses piezoelectric crystals that produce voltage when they are compressed. A 12-gauge shotgun fires the crystals, stunning the target with an electric shock on impact. Lynntech of College Station, Texas, is developing a projectile Taser that can be fired from a shotgun or 40-mm grenade launcher to increase greatly the weapon's current range of seven meters."
- The antidepressants Prozac and Zoloft, "identified by the Penn State College of Medicine and the university's Applied Research Lab for further study as "non-lethal calmatives." These '...are found to be highly effective for numerous behavioral disturbances encountered in situations where a deployment of a non-lethal technique must be considered.' ...New compounds under development (WO 09500194) are being designed with a faster onset of action."

It appears that the right to "peacefully assemble for the redress of grievances" has been redacted out of the First Amendment.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Must have been an amazing 11 days

According to the Nobel organization, nominations for the Peace Prize must be submitted by February 1 every year. This means that the nomination for President Obama's Peace Prize is based on what he did during his first 11 days (or less) in office.

Virtual buckeye to Gordon Gekko at taxmanblog.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Ohio State Senator explains his support for SCR13

In the Tenth Amendment Center blog, State Senator John Carey, a cosponsor of SCR13, explains why he supported the resolution. Here is an excerpt:

The 10th Amendment reads: “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, the federal government only has certain powers which are spelled out in the Constitution.

Unfortunately, many recent actions by the federal government directly contradict this principle.

For instance, President Obama and many Democrats in Congress continue to champion a cap and trade energy policy that could have a devastating effect on Ohio’s economy, while dramatically raising electricity prices for consumers in our region.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is also pushing excessive regulations on states that would not only increase operating costs for existing Ohio business, but could impact our ability to attract new development and create jobs.

In addition, the President is leading an effort to create a public health care option and give the federal government more control over our nation’s health care system.

Concerned about the increasing influence of the federal government and its impact on the future of our state and Ohio taxpayers, my colleagues and I in the Ohio Senate recently approved Senate Concurrent Resolution 13, which urges Congress to respect the 10th Amendment and adhere only to the limited rights and responsibilities delegated by the states to the federal government.

I co-sponsored the resolution.

Nice talking points for the Ohio House!

President Obama wins Nobel Peace Prize

For what, exactly?

Relieving Europe that he isn't George Bush doesn't strike me as an adequate criterion for attaining such a distinction.

Now we're all Federal criminals

If you think the piece on the Patriot Act was scary, check out this one from the Washington Times: A Texan named George Norris suffered a Manna Storehouse-like raid from the US Fish and Wildlife Service for failing to complete some paperwork relating to the importation of orchids. It should be noted that Mr. Norris is an elderly diabetic with coronary complications, arthritis and Parkinson's disease. He was convicted. The judge's idea of sympathy: "Life sometimes hands us lemons."

The Norrises' nightmare began with the search in October 2003. It didn't end until Mr. Norris was released from federal supervision in December 2008. His wife testified, however, that even after he came home, the man she had married was still gone. He was by then 71 years old. Unsurprisingly, serving two years as a federal convict - in addition to the years it took to defend unsuccessfully against the charges - had taken a severe toll on him mentally, emotionally and physically.

We need what The Cato Institute's Timothy Lynch called "a clean line between lawful conduct and unlawful conduct." A person should not be deemed a criminal unless that person "crossed over that line knowing what he or she was doing."

I mentioned earlier about games that federal prosecutors play. Those games are being played with our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor. This blog has catalogued, under the rubric "Attacks on Constitutional rights" a chilling chronicle, all from reliable sources, of Federal contempt of the rights of Americans. Those games have to stop. Until they do, the policeman will be correct when he said "it ain't America anymore."

US Senate committee votes to renew Patriot Act

... in its entirety, according to Wired. The renewed Patriot Act will include three controversial provisions that enable the Feds to issue broad warrants to retrieve any kind of records* without the government having to declare that the information sought is connected to a terrorism or espionage investigation; the "roving wiretap" provision that allows wiretapping without identifying the target or what method of communication is to be tapped; and the "lone wolf" provision to allow court warrants for the electronic monitoring of a person for whatever reason — even without showing that the suspect is an agent of a foreign power or a terrorist. The government has said it has never invoked that provision, but said it wanted to retain the authority to do so.

Of course, the justification for these measures is classified. Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vermont) said he wished “the American public could have seen” the classified briefing. Uh huh. Believe that, and I'll sell you some tropical beach front in Sen. Leahy's home state.

Critics of the bill to renew these provisions, notably Sen. Russ Feingold (D-Wisconsin), argued that these allow the federal government to pursue "fishing expeditions".

The bipartisan support for extending these controls should satisfy anyone that George Wallace was correct when he said that there isn't a dime's worth of difference between the two major parties. Your choice is between a party that spends your tax dollars for benefits it can't afford, while robbing you of your liberties; and a party that spends your tax dollars for benefits the recipients don't need, while robbing you of your liberties.

And people wonder why I support secession...!

Virtual buckeye to Rebellion.

* Including library cards, except that library records can only be retrieved if the Feds can justify it on the basis of a probable link to terrorism. Even that provision was criticized by Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Alabama), who worried that the change might “encourage terrorists they have a safe haven” in America’s public libraries.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Manna Storehouse Trial Rescheduled

Lynn Walsh at the Buckeye Institute advises us that the Lorain County Common Pleas Court has rescheduled the case of Stowers v. Ohio Department of Agriculture to an unspecified date. I shall keep you posted when a new date is set.

SCR13 assigned to House Committee

Ohio's state sovereignty resolution, SCR13, having passed the Senate Sept. 29, has been assigned to the House State Government committee. Uh huh. The same one where HCR11 is still waiting for its second hearing...

It will take intense public pressure on Speaker Budish, Chairman Ron Gerberry, and the members of the committee to get a hearing on this resolution. Please contact them now! An easy way to do this is to use the Ohio Freedom Alliance SLAM (State Legislative Action Mailer) -- but please customize your message!

Would the breakup of the Union be a bad thing?

You know what I think, but here is a concurring opinion from Dave Mundy at Op-Ed News. Mr. Mundy states quite clearly why war would not necessarily be the result of states seceding. While he supports the idea that the red state/blue state split in American politics is a good reason to allow secession, he also notes that secessionism is not necessarily a red state/blue state thing, noting that liberals are included in the membership of his Texas Nationalist Movement.

Mr. Mundy writes:

The Civil War never settled the question of secession. It simply settled the fact that the industrialized North had more men, more weapons and more money than the agrarian South -- a situation which would be nearly reversed today. In order to prevent secession, Abraham Lincoln shredded the Constitution whenever it was convenient, ordered federal troops to fire on immigrant protesters in New York City, and laid waste to the South in a fashion not seen in war since Roman times.

Imagine what kind of devastation would be wrought using modern weapons. I even saw one comment from a self-proclaimed California liberal which maintained that if Texas seceded, "...we can nuke them right back into the Stone Age." Do statists really desire power so bad that they would kill millions of people and devastate huge swaths of this country just to achieve their goal of a single omnipotent imperial-style government?

And the thing is, this nation is increasingly polarized because of the way the statists have divided us, rather than united us... Statists, from Barack Obama to George W. Bush, think the government can fix everything. Secessionists are pretty well convinced the government can't fix anything, and we've got a lot more examples showing we're right.The fact exists that this country is extremely polarized. Every major election brings on more and more angry, virulent rhetoric. Democrats and Republicans alike spend more of their time playing dirty tricks or digging up dirt on each other than they do trying to solve the problems of government.

People on the Left Coast do not share the concerns of the people in the Rust Belt. Texas has far different concerns than does the Deep South. Rather than a single homogenous nation which shares a single culture, we have hundreds of different sub-cultures all competing for primacy.

So why in the name of reason would anyone want to hold so many diverse, conflicting groups together? Can anyone argue that, despite the struggles in Kosovo and Bosnia, that Yugoslavia isn't better off separated into seven republics? What good would using force accomplish?

The real problem is that, for Americans educated to believe in "one nation indivisible", the idea of separate nations is a paradigm shift, one that carries with it some emotional baggage. But that an idea seems emotionally wrong does not make it unworthy of consideration. It simply means that we may have to go outside the comfort zone of our thinking to find a better solution to the problems that confront us.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Upholding to the Constitution requires legislators to resist temptation

Yesterday and today, I am posting the remarks made by the co-sponsors of Michigan's SCR4, passed by its Senate Sept. 17 (Constitution Day!). While both co-sponsors are Republican, the resolution was agreed to by all 14 Democrats present:

These remarks are by Sen. Patterson:

Today is a most auspicious day. It is Constitution Day. On this date in 1787—222 years ago; perhaps some might even remember—famous words, “We the People,” were adopted by our Founding Fathers as a part of our Federal Constitution. The Constitution is a document rich in history and unique to the fact that this country has established the blueprint for self-governance.

As we know, but sometimes now and again we need to be reminded, a few years later in 1791, ten amendments to that Constitution were adopted. Thus, the Bill of Rights were enshrined in order to accentuate the intent of the Founding Fathers who had a protracted and vigorous debate over what type of country they wanted to hand on to future generations.

One of those Bill of Rights amendments was the Tenth Amendment, which we will all recall states that the powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states and we the people. Senate Concurrent Resolution No. 4 and Senate Resolution No. 17 serve to remind us, those serving we the people, that a positive grant of select authority—select, specific limited authority—was being extended by we the people to those whom they chose and entrusted to serve.

The resolutions that we have today are really very simple votes to cast. Every one of us knows, before we undertook the responsibilities and obligations of our office, we in accordance with our Michigan Constitution* swore an oath under Article 11, Section 1, to uphold the Constitution and to embrace the intent of those limited specific authorities granted by we the people. It is not an all-encompassing grant, but rather a specific limited authority extended by we the people.

The votes on these two items are relatively simple. We have already sworn that we will faithfully discharge and uphold, but we must understand that we are always being tempted; thus, the fulfillment of the obligations. The honor that we swore, in spite of the temptations extended by both the Democrats and the Republicans to exceed the limited delegation, is always before us. Please be cautious [to] not to violate your oath by exceeding the limited delegation in the discharge of your sworn duties. [Emphasis added]

I know that you will all do the right thing. We owe it to the people.

* The same requirement appears in the Ohio Constitution, Article XVI, Section 7: "Every person chosen or appointed to any office under this state, before entering upon the discharge of its duties, shall take an oath or affirmation, to support the Constitution of the United States, and of this State, and also an oath of office."

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Why the Michigan Senate passed the state sovereignty resolution

Today and tomorrow, I will post the remarks made by the co-sponsors of Michigan's SCR4, passed by its Senate Sept. 17. While both co-sponsors are Republican, the resolution was agreed to by all 14 Democrats present:

This is by Sen. Cropsey:

This resolution, if taken to heart, probably would affect us as a state legislature maybe more so than any place else in the United States, when every state legislature says, “You know what? The federal government has enumerated powers that are spelled out in the United States Constitution.”

There was a lot of controversy when the Constitution was adopted. The controversy was why do you need a Bill of Rights? If the federal government is only supposed to do what is enumerated in the current Constitution, then you don’t need a Bill of Rights because they can’t do anything beyond that. They can’t worry about freedom of speech and freedom of the press because they aren’t even supposed to get into that area. The people’s rights are safe in the sense that the federal government will not encroach upon it. That was the Federalist viewpoint.

The anti-Federalist viewpoint was, “We understand what you are saying as Federalists, but we still don’t trust the government to do what it is really supposed to do; that it will stay within its enumerated powers.” They said, “We want to make sure that we have these rights enshrined in our Constitution.”

The Tenth Amendment was added basically to say to the people of the country, “Just because we have put these first nine amendments onto the Constitution doesn’t mean that that is giving any power to the federal government.” It’s like the Constitution is putting on a belt, and this also puts on the suspenders to make sure that we are binding the federal government to its delegated powers. The Tenth Amendment is saying just because you have enumerated certain things the federal government can’t do doesn’t mean that they can start doing other things.

The Tenth Amendment was critical in reaffirming what the Federalists said, and it was critical in order to get things passed as far as our Bill of Rights. It is very unfortunate when you take a look at our federal government today that it has been going into areas that are way beyond the scope of the Constitution of the United States. I wish that every federal judge, every United States Senator, every United States Representative, and the President would take a good look at the Tenth amendment, the history of our Constitution, and get back to a constitutional form of government. They have gone so far beyond where they are supposed to be and what the founders envisioned. A lot of what the federal government is doing should have been left up to the people and the states. [Emphasis added]

I want to thank the sponsor of this resolution and the following resolution for bringing this to our attention to once again remind us that we need to get back to federal principles and fundamental principles that made this country great.

Tomorrow, I shall post Sen. Patterson' s statement.

Friday, October 2, 2009

The difference between Ohio Democrats and Michigan Democrats

The Senates of both Ohio and Michigan have passed state sovereignty resolutions in the last three weeks.

Ohio's resolution passed 19-12 on a straight party-line vote.

Michigan's passed 33-0. Here's the journal entry to prove it (at page 1464). Fourteen of those votes were from Democrats. Three of those votes were from African-American Democrats (namely, Irma Clark-Coleman, Tupec Hunter, and Martha G. Scott).

I have no doubt that they are loyal to their party, and no doubt have at least an affinity for the Democratic Congress and Administration in DC; but I do wonder how two states as similar as Ohio and Michigan could have such different results on the same issue.

Do you suppose that the Michigan Democrats think it's more important to back the people who elected them than to make a show of loyalty to the national party?

Thursday, October 1, 2009


The Ohio Senate on Tuesday passed Senate Concurrent Resolution 13 on state sovereignty, by a straight party-line vote of 19-12 (see Senate Journal beginning at the bottom of p. 2068), with two absences. The resolution now goes to the Ohio House, where it will face an uphill battle in the face of Speaker Budish's determination not to allow consideration of any resolution that challenges federal authority.

Recovering from vacation...

I was in Frankenmuth, Michigan, on vacation the last few days, during which I did not think much about anything political. I'm home now, but it may take a day or two to regain my bearings!

Just wanted to let you know, The Ohio Republic will continue to be published!