Constitutional Quizzery

by Tom Baugh
StarvingTheMonkeys.com

(Edtitor’s Note: Tom shows the path to secession. Attaboy, Tom!!)

Despite a continual degradation of liberty in these united States, the patriot blogosphere continues to be energized with sentiments such as “keep your hands off my Constitution”, “let’s restore the Constitution”, “if you don’t like my Constitution then you should get the hell out”, or “I can’t wait to kill all the people who don’t like my Constitution”. Or variations of this same theme.

While such emotional reactions probably feel good to the reactionary spouting them (who is, by the way, trying to articulate perfectly legitimate concerns about something having gone terribly wrong in this country), they ignore some simple facts about the Constitution itself. Without going into all the details about the facts which support a Hamiltonian power grab (Boston T. Party does a fine job of this all by himself in his Hologram of Liberty”), splitting hairs about “of” or “for”, or devolving into yet another academic Spooner tug-fest, we can let the Constitution speak for itself.

First, however, I would like to slice and dice some of the founding documents so that we can see Constitutional reality. For our purposes here, the founding documents can be divided as follows:

a. The Declaration of Independence (DoI).
b. The seven articles of Constitutional power.
c. The Bill of Rights (BoR).
d. The remainder of the amendments to the Constitution.

Pop Quiz (which should be a breeze for those Constitutional scholars so confident of their patriotism that they would easily exile or execute those with whom they disagree, freedom of speech notwithstanding):

Question 1: Of these four divisions, two are about liberty, one is about centralized government control, and the remainder patches holes discovered in that power over time. Can you name which is which?

Question 2: Of these four divisions, which is the one that most patriot types have in mind when considering ideas such as “oathkeeping” versus “oathbreaking”?

Question 3: For the division given as the answer to the previous question, what enforcement provisions exist to ensure the rights described therein are protected?

Question 4: Other than individual cases which don’t amount to a hill of stacked crap, when throughout the entire history of the nation have those rights been protected in any crisis of any magnitude (hint: Katrina), crises being the only time in which preservation of rights is essential?

OK, I could go on and on, but I run the risk of losing some of those who are starting to get a nagging, uncomfortable feeling. Let’s get rid of the nagging and make sure it is a full-bore deliberate uncomfortable feeling instead, and grade those papers. Get out your red pens, gang.

Answer 1: This first question should be easy. Only the DoI and BoR are about liberty. I think we can all agree that the concepts in those two documents are essential to a free people. In contrast, the seven articles of Constitutional power delineate the power structure established by, and powers granted to, the central government. The other amendments primarily patch holes in that framework when too much actual liberty threatens to squirt out at the seams.

Answer 2: Again, an easy question. Most patriots, especially military veterans, have in mind the BoR when thinking warm fuzzy thoughts about Constitutional oaths. But you can be sure that high office holders are instead only thinking about all that power vested in their offices when they take an oath. Both groups are correct, but only one of them carries the day in any meaningful way, which brings us to…

Answer 3: There is no enforcement language whatsoever for the Bill of Rights. Any prohibition without enforcement is merely a suggestion. Or propaganda, depending on your point of view. And so …

Answer 4: Whenever your rights bump up against the power of the high office holders or their mid- to low-office minions, you lose. Every time. Wherever or whenever you think Americans have been free in the past, it is just because the feds (read as “enforcers for the elites”) hadn’t gotten around to walling that place off yet. The tyranny has always been lying there dormant, waiting to be used, and leaks through the cracks in times of crisis. But now, it’s all crisis, isn’t it?

Now, the usual patriot answer is that “wee the people” have somehow let down “wee the people” by not marching on DC with our NRA-sanctioned sporting arms and straightening out “thee the people” in those high offices. Again, this sounds good, but the fact it has NEVER happened, and NEVER will, is due to one simple provision in all of that power stuff we usually skip over while paging one-handed over to the good stuff in that Bill of Suggested Rights If They Aren’t Too Inconvenient When They Matter Most.

Bonus Question:

Care to guess which one provision totally pulls the rug out from under any patriot movement based on purely Constitutional principles? For additional credit, what other provisions support this view?

(tick tock tick tock)

Don’t feel bad, it took me years to get this one, too…

(tick tock tick tock)

Hint: It’s in Article II…

(tick tock tick tock)

Another hint: Look in Section 2 of that Article.

(tick tock tick tock)

Let’s read it together:

“The President shall be Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States, and of the Militia of the several States, when called into the actual Service of the United States…”

Catch that?

Oh, you know, that little part where it says that if you want to have a militia, that the President owns it? And, by extension, the only valid militia is that of your State, which the President owns, too (check history, the real one, not what you learned in public school, for numerous examples before you argue the feel-good patriot-fantasy to the contrary). So, in effect, my patriot friends, by swearing to the sanctity of the Constitution, you have handed over your one means of enforcing compliance with that Bill of Rights fantasy. See also that militia stuff buried within the Article I, Section 8 laundry list, as well as in Article IV, Section 4.

These provisions of centralized Constitutional power are why there has never been, and will never be, any meaningful resistance to increasing national control and encroachment of every issue of life for each one of us. We are on a one-way path to oblivion, since our best means to resist has been carefully crafted to be meaningless from the start. Sure, form a militia, which, by the way, is the absolutely and ethically correct (albeit unlawful) reaction to our circumstances. But, after doing so, then all of your oathkeeping Constitutionalist buddies, you know, the ones in the officially sanctioned police and military militias, will demand that said local and/or private militia then answer to the President, and by extension to the elites who actually run this country. Said powers, will of course, demand that said militia disband and go home.

Despite Second Amendment propaganda, you have no Constitutional recourse of last resort to oppose with force the laws of the (capital letter) United States, including laws such as NDAA. Which means, of course, that any local militia opposition fantasies are strictly un-Constitutional, by definition.

Checkmate on the first move. Well, actually, before you even get to move.

My friends, despite what you want to believe about this nation, no form of government which criminalizes the right of any person to band together with his neighbors for armed mutual defense, against enemies foreign or domestic, can hold any validity in the mind of a free man.

Forget arguments about anarchist this, or Constitutionalist that, or any other ist you choose, this prohibition is the central nugget. By placing militias under the control of the Chief Executive, and providing for the use of that force to enforce compliance with laws, even, or especially, those laws which blatantly violate the Bill of Rights, we all lose.

Within two years of taking office, the first President showed exactly what central power was all about, by raising an army of 12,000 men to put down tax resisters in the Whiskey Rebellion. Review that little bit of history at your leisure. Note that the same founders who were aghast at a tea tax, and threw that famous Tea Party, didn’t take too kindly to the same behavior being applied to their tax against Appalachian corn tea out in the sticks (Yeah, I know, there’s that whole “no taxation without representation” slogan. But, who do you think gets more representation? You out in the sticks, or the elites with their checkbooks? If you think your vote actually means anything, or lets you make a meaningful or informed decision, you haven’t been paying attention to reality lately).

As you may recall, the private militias which had formed in the hinterland for mutual defense against that first major national tax were labeled as treasonous and enemies of the state. And the rest of the nation just lapped that rationale up. Just as the North lapped up a similar labeling of the breakaway South. And just as contemporary citizens lap up the idea that militia types are somehow dangerous to law and order as more than half of them wait for their government checks. See the pattern?

Your absolutely correct and noble desire to form a local militia to protect yourself against unconstitutional behavior is itself unconstitutional. Embrace that fact. The first step to recovery is to admit that you have a problem, and we, my friends, have a big problem right there in black and white.

This is the document to which the Constitutionalists swear, and then wonder about the results in endless frustration. Lacking a constant brimming threat of imminent militia action, the national government has run amok, and will continue to run increasingly amok, all within Constitutional bounds.

As it was designed to do from the start for reasons you’ll discover once you open your eyes to see reality for what it really is.

Sadly, we are taught, and many of our Constitutionalist brethren believe, that the only alternative is anarchy and chaos. Anarchy and chaos is, of course, the natural end result of the path we are on. And sadly, there is no way back the way we’ve come, for a variety of reasons too numerous to list here. It is going to go all the way down, like it or not. Eventually, the US will run out of blood (regardless of even an inevitable draft someday) and treasure (regardless of how many nations from which we “democratize” valuable natural resources) necessary to pay the bondholders who own this country. Eventually, that little thing known as “the full faith and credit” runs completely dry no matter how many drag themselves up to wearily salute the tattered flag of the banksters’ state.

The question is, what then? What do we put in place to make sure the same juggernaut won’t be revived the next time around?

We’ve learned from this little quarter-millennial experiment that only a system in which universal local militia service is codified can protect you in any meaningful way or preserve civilization in any recognizable form. Only the Constitutional prohibition of the universal local militia renders immune from the consequences of their misbehavior tyrants at all levels, from the greenest cop to the highest office holders, including the generals who will one day come to crush your own private Whiskey Rebellion. It is for this reason that the proponents of the Bill of Rights struggled to check what they saw back then as a Hamiltonian juggernaut aimed at the throats of the individual citizen. A struggle which has now proven to be in vain.

As I said before, no form of government which criminalizes the right to band together with his neighbors for armed mutual defense, against enemies foreign or domestic, can hold any validity in the mind of a free man.

But that freedom comes with a price. And one facet of that price is that the individual citizen would have to participate, to man and woman up, to not delegate their responsibilities to unknown, faceless others. In a world in which even an invalid grandmother can spot targets out her farmhouse window and call for fire, the typical sandal-wearing 911-dialing man-mouse would become an endangered species. And civilization would thus lurch forward for the better as it crunches over the bones of those who gladly trade liberty for insecurity. Including those bones of those nobly misguided patriots who fear the prospect of local or regional warlords (read as “militia leaders”) so much that they eagerly not only accept, but actively promote, the yoke of the greatest warlord class in history in exchange for protection from those lesser shadows.

Does this mean our situation is hopeless? No, our situation is hopeless only so long as self-defined patriots think that restoring the Constitution, as written, is a viable path. As I have said many times, there is nothing broken with the Constitution that needs restoring; it is working fine and dandy, just as it was designed to do, which is to protect the elites from the rabble, foreign and domestic, who might otherwise take exception to unremitting theft and corruption under the color of twisted law.

The only valid path for us now is to stand aside while it all crumbles away. Let those who continue to fantasize about a republic which never was throw themselves into that self-defeating breach. Save them if they are willing to learn, but let them go if they won’t. Eventually, evolution will do what it always does, which is to correct error and reward, in its painful way, reality and truth.

A day will arrive when the last gasping pure Constitutionalist, bewildered to the end while defending his oppressors, has been crushed in the gears of the machine designed to feed the elites. Only then will those elites be stripped of the power to protect themselves from their victims. Stripped how? By local militias who refuse to yield more blood or treasure to their service. Universal service in militias under local control, my friends, is the only way forward. We’ve seen where the road leads without those local militias.

So, plan for that inevitable outcome. Organize your patriot militias, not to vainly restore the perfectly intact Constitution, nor to defend it for the benefits of the elite who have owned this country from inception, but to replace it when this house of cards finally collapses under its weight, preserving yourselves and your neighbors within that storm. Then, on the other side, let’s work together to restore the principles of liberty and put teeth into the rights of man with meaningful consequences enforced by local militias, unfettered by those who rightly fear them.

© 2009-2012 Starve Monkey Press, Inc. All rights reserved.

7 Responses to Constitutional Quizzery

  1. Jean says:

    Stopped reading from this point to comment:
    “Forget arguments about anarchist this, or Constitutionalist that, or any other ist you choose, this prohibition is the central nugget. By placing militias under the control of the Chief Executive, and providing for the use of that force to enforce compliance with laws, even, or especially, those laws which blatantly violate the Bill of Rights, we all lose.”

    Quick logical exercise, I’m not sure how it goes – this is a question:
    IF the President is unlawful (Whether by birth, by fraud, ilness), do we then go through succession, with the OFFICE being the key? Or would the militia find itself without allegiance in the strict sense you use it here?

    Wondering.

    I also have to wonder about the entire argument from a different point fo view: In English law, an oath was only considered valid when both parties lived up to the established contract. If a vassal swore allegiance to a lord, but the lord refused to meet the terms of the allegiance – say, failure to feed the vassal – the contract was considered null and void. While breech might be difficult to determine or unequally enforced (IE, failing to protect the peasants or taxing them too highly would probably not get much response; allowing their homes to be burned by wandering barbarians, maybe a bit more censure, or even voiding the fealty oath), I think the principle could be invoked here, too: the US was created to do (insert constitution), and instead it is doing (list of grievances with citations), so the contract itself has been voided. Therefore all diktats would be null and void as well. It does put us back to square one, but at least everyone could see that that’s where we are, and why. (Also would get rid of the problems of subordinating all militias to the police state, as the “state” has violated the oath, and therefore ceased to be – which brings them to the point of using violence to control us, which means outright war regardless. Better publicity you could not buy. Boston Massacre 201X.)

    Last thought before I go back and read the remainder of the article, as said by Ben Franklin’s character in 1776, “ALL revolutions are illegal in the third person: Their Revolution. They are only legitimate in the FIRST person: OUR revolution.” (Paraphrased, i’m afraid.) The point was, it is ALWAYS illegal to resist tyranny from the tyrant’s point of view: Don’t those commoners understand I’m doing (this) for THEM?! {Subtext: Why don’t they kneel down and worship my greatness?} Whereas, from the “activist’s” point of view, it’s always legal, as it is a human right to self-defense…

    • dumpdc says:

      Dear Jean- Before we answer your questions, read : http://lysanderspooner.org/node/44 Cheers, Russ

      • Jean says:

        Reading the introduction (assuming the rest follows the direction of same – I’m at work and can’t afford to read the whole thing right now), seems to state both where I am coming from, and my thoughts RE: the Civil War. (More accurately War of Northern Aggression.)
        However, the question of Federalism vs. State’s Rights was “settled” in this war – revisiting it now is somewhat pointless. Most people have been indoctrinated to believe this is how things SHOULD be. Besides, they’re FREE! They can choose whose label is on the @$$. Choosing what jeans you put on in the morning is the DEFINITION of freedom, didn’t you know? 😉

        I think, as with the Matrix, some people are better off ASLEEP. The problem is, we “unplugged” them via universal suffrage. Now the somnambulent sheep vote, while the intelligent and productive are too busy (& aware that their vote is meaningless) to waste the time and effort. Further. there is a percentage of those intelligent and productive who benefit from the situations, and a significant portion who are either non-violent, freedom-averse (responsibility avoidant?), disinterested, or subject to the modern morass too little to care. Why worry (much) about the U.S. if you’re living in France, Turkey, Belgium, Australia, etc? Adn this is before we even address the other aspect of “voting is worthless”, that the candidates presented are mass-market-appeal bottom-feeders, scraped off the lowest echelons of humanity, given a good white-washing, and paraded around in front of the sheeple as the next messiah. (And Obummer isn’t unique there.)

        So my next question becomes, how do people here, who ARE knowledgeable, intelligent, productive, and capable, succeed at changing the system? (I think they do not.) Secession as a movement seems to me DOA, impossible. The “sovereign” movement has some merit, but too few, too far apart, generally too peaceful.

        As someone in the manosphere put it WRT family court, ultimately, there is an, “or else.” “Or Else,” specifically means force.

        Frederick Douglas’s case before the Supreme Court in fact underscores Lysander Spooner:

        The principle, on which the war was waged by the North, was simply this: That men may rightfully be compelled to submit to, and support, a government that they do not want; and that resistance, on their part, makes them traitors and criminals.

        No principle, that is possible to be named, can be more self-evidently false than this; or more self-evidently fatal to all political freedom. Yet it triumphed in the field, and is now assumed to be established. If it really be established, the number of slaves, instead of having been diminished by the war, has been greatly increased; for a man, thus subjected to a government that he does not want, is a slave. And there is no difference, in principle — but only in degree — between political and chattel slavery. The former, no less than the latter, denies a man’s ownership of himself and the products of his labor; and [*iv] asserts that other men may own him, and dispose of him and his property, for their uses, and at their pleasure.

        I would point out, this is the PRINCIPLE of taxation for the American public, though few realize it, and fewer still talk about it – the ban from “polite conversatino” of politics and religion being a HIGHLY useful tool, though I could get into a speculative rant on the origins of that as well. (Women being designed to harness and control men, to put them to labor much as beasts are in turn put in tack and harness by man… By controlling “polite conversation” -> controling discourse, woman has effectively set herself on the moral high ground – which feminism has continued to practice and enforce for far longer than the feminist movement itself existed. But off topic here, except as a consideration of how women must be brought around to the male view through manipulation rather than logic, which would be a fool’s errand regardless.)

        Douglas’s case determined, as I understand, that a man cannot be deprived of his property by virtue of relocation. As Douglas belonged to his master, relocation to a slave state did not make Douglas a free man, and for the court to enforce such would deprive the owner of Douglas’s self and labor.
        Yet the same thing happens every April, and is “celebrated” every November (And January) by the adoring sheeple, venerating their new master*.

        Better to “secede” one’s self, and labors, from the equation. Centralization destroys everything, eventually; empires crumble, civilizations fail, governments topple. Our best option is to incite as possible, and be elsewhere when the process reaches critical mass.

        “Most men prefer the calm of despotism to the tempestuous sea of Liberty.” Thomas Jefferson, 1796

      • Jean says:

        Lunchtime allowed me to finish, it was shorter than I thought.

        I found the definition of the US I speak of here:

        Sixth. It is not improbable that many or most of the worst of governments — although established by force, and by a few, in the first place — come, in time, to be supported by a majority. But if they do, this majority is composed, in large part, of the most ignorant, superstitious, timid, dependent, servile, and corrupt portions of the people; of those who have been over-awed by the power, intelligence, wealth, and arrogance; of those who have been deceived by the frauds; and of those who have been corrupted by the inducements, of the few who really constitute the government. Such majorities, very likely, could be found in half, perhaps nine-tenths, of all the countries on the globe. What do they prove? Nothing but the tyranny and corruption of the very governments that have reduced so large portions of [*9] the people to their present ignorance, servility, degradation, and corruption; an ignorance, servility, degradation, and corruption that are best illustrated in the simple fact that they do sustain governments that have so oppressed, degraded, and corrupted them. They do nothing towards proving that the governments themselves are legitimate; or that they ought to be sustained, or even endured, by those who understand their true character. The mere fact, therefore, that a government chances to be sustained by a majority, of itself proves nothing that is necessary to be proved, in order to know whether such government should be sustained, or not.

        The only thing missing is the role of modern mass communications, reducing people to the lowest common denominator ever faster and more insidiously, as the content delivered is injected into the mind like a virus, there are no filters for the fiction vs. Reality.

        Radio was “bad” in this sense, but television, especially movies with special effects? Now we have cars flip 15 times, shatter, and blow up, but the hero (and often villian) survives. (Only took three stunt men, but we don’t SEE that.)

        And the laws reflect the warped view of reality, too: Silencers, for example, or fireworks, or “terroristic threats”, or anti-bullying laws (the daughter was being bullied; the school had to “build a case”; after two months, the daughter finally had enough and choked and beat up the bully; guess who was suspended? Thank god it was PA and not NJ, she would be in a mental institution.)
        So… Begs the original question, since we have the stupid, somnambulent, worthless, soulless, uncaring, disinterested dregs of humanity voting and thereby directly controlling who is elected, based on how they are fed from the public trough….

        Secession seems too civilized.

      • Jean says:

        And, I must admit I lied slightly last message saying I had in fact read the whole thing at that time, as I was still reading; and I came upon this piece, which underscores my final line in the second response:

        George the Third called our ancestors traitors for what they did at that time. But they were not traitors in fact, whatever he or his laws may have called them. They were not traitors in fact, because they betrayed nobody, and broke faith with nobody. They were his equals, owing him no allegiance, obedience, nor any other duty, except such as they owed to mankind at large. Their political relations with him had been purely voluntary. They had never pledged their faith to him that they would continue these relations any longer than it should please them to do so; and therefore they broke no faith in parting with him. They simply exercised their natural right of saying to him, and to the English people, that they were under no obligation to continue their political connexion with them, and that, for reasons of their own, they chose to dissolve it. [*14]

        Our rulers DO take an oath, and the fraud perpetuated there is that the oath is to, “We the people,” when in reality – like any other oath of fealty – it is to the SYSTEM, to the GOVERNMENT, and not to the supposed constituents.

        Therefore, all those who would swear such an oath (unfortunately including those in the armed services) MUST be seen as belligerants, combatants, enemies. (Given the political situation we are discussing.) They received recognition, power, money, from a forced (though voluntarily entered) oath; they are bound to serve that system, corrupt, immoral, evil – makes no difference. (And if it were truly benevolent, I doubt we, or Mr. Spooner, or Plato, or Cato the elder, would have had much to say about these principles.) But governments are made of men, and even the best therefore become paternalistic and murderous, agents of enforcing conformity and suppressing dissent.

        Keep the people weak and stupid:
        Give them bread and circuses…

        Megadeth had it right…
        (See albums: “United Abmoinations” & “World needs a Hero”; maybe some of the more recent ones, as well, though the sentiment is there in “Youthanasia” and “Symphony of Destruction” as well. Amazing how art imitates life… Or prophecizes, as Ayn Rand: Atlas Shrugged shows where we are going politically. the only thing missing in Rand’s work is the subsidizing of failing industries [in my defence if this is untrue, I am basing it on the FILM, as I have been unsuccessful reading the book thus far.])

        Thank you for the Lysander Spooner link; I had forgotten about the man.

  2. Hey You says:

    It has always seemed to me that the body of the Constitution enumerates what the “government” can do whereas the Bill of Rights says what it can’t do. Now, from the explanation, it appears that the body of the Constitution is law but the Bill of Rights are suggestions.

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