DECEMBER 13, 2013
• The Power of the States—Part III
Too numerous to list are the reasons the United States has massively expanded government, went into debt by trillions of dollars, offers unrestrained welfare and imposes soft tyranny while limiting freedom. But whatever the reasons, the typical suggested solution to this situation—throwing the elected bums out and voting-in conservative candidates—is at best a momentary slowing of the deterioration (and an insult to bums).
But the real solution is to control our government by bypassing the federal government. Even better still, this solution is provided to us in the Constitution of the United States of America. And best of all, that solution is already underway.
Yes, you read that correctly. We are on the cusp of literally saving our country.
The framers of our Constitution foresaw a tyrannical congress. In fact, George Mason wouldn’t even sign on to a ratification of the Constitution so long as it was only the federal government empowered to amend the Constitution. He is recorded as having made note that a tyrannical Congress would never vote itself a limit of power.
And so Article 5 of the Constitution provides for the legislatures of the States to call for a convention to propose amendments to the Constitution on which the states would later vote: Other than providing a “secretarial” role (so to speak), the federal government has NO authority, input or regulation in this process.
This Article 5 Amendment process first came to my attention when National Radio Host, Mark Levin (a former Regan administration insider and a Constitutional lawyer who has successfully taken on EPA with his Landmark Legal Foundation) wrote of it in his book, The Liberty Amendments. Whether it was his prompting or that the time had come, I cannot say. But what I can say is that the process is moving forward after a recent meeting of representatives from various states was successful as an impetus for further action.
On Mark Levin's Show (December 10, 2013) the person spearheading this process was invited to report on the progress. What follows is a transcript of that appearance that I have made. You can go to the Levin Web site for the audio itself.
And now, the transcript:
You have been a leading voice and have help collect a number of State Reps and State Senators. And this past Saturday, December 7th, you held the first Mount Vernon Assembly. And I wanted you, if you can, to report back and tell us what happened.
There were 97 State Legislators from 32 different states that showed up. We met for four hours. And uh, we were credentialed. We met at the Fred W. Smith Library, which is on the side of Mount Vernon. It’s a brand new facility. And we were, uh—we essentially put together the start of this process. And agreed to meet again in June in Indianapolis for stage two where we will start the process of putting rules together for a convention of the states.
So, we—as much as anything—found common ground, established some basic agreements and are now going to go to a more formal process of asking Senate Presidents and (House) Speakers around the country—in all fifty states—to appoint two people from each chamber, a Republican and a Democrat—we’re going to try to do this in a bipartisan way—and uh, to meet in Indianapolis for the process to get started. And from there we see another meeting in December which we are going to call the—uh—a—well, I don’t have the exact verbiage in front of me. I think we are going to call it the U.S. Rules Drafting Conference. And from that Conference we hope to establish the bones of the uh—a structure for a Convention of the States.
So, it’s an exciting time. We have to do this, because as you know, there is no specific blueprint in the Constitution for how you put this together. And so we have to go into this being totally prepared and thoroughly ready to push back against anyone who tries to undermine this by saying—for instance Congress saying, they are going to put this—the rules together; They’re going to tell us how to do it. We want to make sure we’re united in saying, We’ve got the process; we’re agreed on how we are going to go about doing this. We know the subject matter we want to discuss and we’re going forward.
And so the goal—the underlying goal for me and I think for many who attended, if not most who attended the Mount Vernon conference—was to try to deal with this ruinous amount of debt that is being accumulated in Washington and try to put some reins on the whole thing and reel this back in. And I take that, knowing other Presidents around the county of different Senates—including some Democrats—they all chafe at the fact that Washington does not have to balance its budget and the States do. And so whether you’re a Republican or Democrat you’ve got to do it in your state. And we’re used to that. And no one that I know who is a leader in this country in the State level believes that—can really stomach what is going on in Washington right now as far as the fiscal responsibility. So on that premise, we feel like we could find bipartisan consent. We’ll see.
So it was an exciting moment. It was historic. And we think it is going to lead to something big. Obviously it’s not an easy path and it will take some time. But we are focused on this and we’re going to go forward and we’re getting momentum. And I think this can lead to something very-very big if—if we can bring in 34 states. And that’s going to be the trick, as you know. We need two-thirds of the states to petition to have this convention. And that’s where we’re aiming right now.
And it should. And frankly, I think this is the only way we’re going to be able to get anything done. And that’s why we’re determined to see this thing through. But, as you said, it’s a path. It’s going to take some time. We have to get it right. We have to structure this correctly. And I think the right people are pushing this forward. So I’m very optimistic right now.
Yeah, ‘cause people are worried. They’re looking at the federal government—the bloat, the coerciveness, the Obama Care, the Presidency, the court, the commu—it’s a mess! And there is recourse under the Constitution.
I do not speak lightly in saying that this monumental, historic and Constitutional process will be long-remembered as the salvation of the United States of America. There’s a ways to go yet, but I have great hopes for this.
So, now it’s your turn. Go spread the good news. Help in motivating your fellow-citizens—and by default, your state—to join in our setting aright our federal government. Your voice does matter. You are not powerless. Through the power of our Federalism—the power of our several States—you and I will make a difference.
OCTOBER 23, 2013
• Cruz Control
Among the derisive techniques in political discourse are short summations and vitriolic speech designed to elicit contemptuous emotional reactions. These are typically utilized in tandem with misinformed arguments that presume, “common sense.” Humor is an excellent medium for combining all of these elements. But the successes of these techniques depend upon over-simplification and a dearth of facts that would otherwise expose an invalid argument.
For example, University of Texas at Arlington Political Science professor Allan Saxe is the frequent “go to guy” for commentary on Fort Worth/Dallas radio station WBAP (820 AM). In this role, he recently paraphrased his students opining on government by echoing mainstream media rhetoric and arguing that when the, “government is doing things, they must be good things.”
Another example: Comedian Christopher Titus was at the Addison Improv beginning the weekend of October 17, 2013. During his show he said that Harry Reid and Ted Cruz were, “douchebags.”
When briefly talking to me after the show, Titus felt compelled to repeat the comparison about Cruz.
The specificity of this second example, which was conveyed through humor in order to elicit a contemptuous emotional reaction, makes for an easy postpartum examination of the opinion’s foundation.
Not being a Texan, Titus probably doesn’t know that Cruz defeated Texas Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst in a run for Texas Senator to the United States. Cruz won in the face of overwhelming Republican establishment efforts and an outrageous Dewhurst mudslinging campaign. The 2012 Republican nomination was a run-off election favoring Cruz by a whopping 57% of the vote to Dewhurst’s 43%. In the following general election, Cruz went on to carry 56% of the vote, defeating Democrat Paul Sadler and his 43%. In short, Cruz was put in office by a groundswell of support that was not behind the VERY established, moderate David Dewhurst. Cruz represented a departure from the type of government representatives with whom we are familiar—someone pushed upon the voter by the establishment.
So, not being immersed in Texas politics, it isn’t likely that Cruz’s rise to office is a foundation upon which Titus is likely to have formed an opinion..
In search of a foundation for disfavor, let us consider Ted Cruz’s experience, education and résumé. Ted Cruz...
Certainly, if anything, the above outstanding record does not qualify as grounds for referring to Ted Cruz as anything but excellent in his various endeavors.
So, any unfavorable opinions of Cruz must find a foundation in the portrayal of the man though the filter of the mainstream media. Such opinions may also rest upon Cruz’s own performances (such as his 21 hour and 19 minute talk on the floor of the Senate chamber or other speeches of similar content).
Stripping away the narrative of the talking heads (as that represents opinions and not facts), what has Cruz done that would merit disfavor akin to that expressed by Titus?
The obvious thing is Cruz’s leading the charge to defund Obamacare. The generally held proposition is that the defund effort was irrelevant because Obamacare was/is the law of the land and/or was already funded by sources outside of those controlled by the House of Representatives.
This is an important allegation. If true, then Titus is right and Cruz is a, “douchebag,” for his 21 hour stall and the resulting resistance he infused into the movement to shut down the government (which was a direct result of a grassroots invigorated by Cruz’s defunding effort). If, on the other hand, the allegation is wrong, then Titus is wrong and Cruz is vindicated.
So, what was the possibility of defunding Obamacare at the point in time that Cruz was leading the charge?
Here are the facts: There were $23 billion (dollars) slated to start and run Obamacare. That amount is part of $105 billion that the LAST Congress appropriated to fund the program. The balance of the amount ($105 billion minus $23 billion, meaning $82 billion) is supposed to become available between now and the fiscal year of 2019. This $82 billion is a separate amount of funding from what the current Congress had the authority to appropriate and provide. (Side note: Just because a program is “authorized” does not mean it follows that it will be funded. Congress can choose to not appropriate funds for an authorized program and it folds.)
Back to the $23 billion: Congress had the power to rescind some or all of it.
It is incorrect to say that the House could not have stopped the funding. They make the funding and they can change funding, as they are empowered by the Constitution. Under their own, in-house rules, they can put funding together or separate it out as they see fit and those house rules are as fluid as the members themselves. Those rules were waived for defunding programs many times. Even during the whole continuing resolution debate, Congress waived rules to defund some programs while trying to fund other federal programs.
In fact, over the course of at least three occasions, one House rule (number 21) was waived so that 123 appropriations could be rescinded.
There were other approaches--too many for me to have tracked or mention here. But the point is, defunding Obamacare was a very real possibility. Had the Republicans—across the board—stood firm and united.
And perhaps that is what has made Cruz so disliked by those on the left: He has made good on his campaign promises and his voters like it.
In an ABC interview, Cruz underscored his motivations:
“There’s an old saying that, ‘Politics, it ain’t beanbag.’ And, you know, I’m not serving in office because I desperately needed 99 new friends in the U.S. Senate. And you know what, there is an inverse relationship. Given the choice between being reviled in Washington D.C. and appreciated in Texas or reviled in Texas and appreciated in Washington: I would take the former one-hundred out of one-hundred times. And I tell you, when I go back home in Texas—I have a job that I was elected to do and that is to represent twenty-six million Texans. To fight for them and they are frustrated just like people all over this country. Their top priority is jobs and economic growth and Washington isn’t listening to them.”
Washington may not be listening, but Texans are—and they have been listening to Ted Cruz. To the chagrin of detractors, Cruz’s recent return to Texas was accompanied by an event at which he received an 8-minute Standing Ovation.
There are, I suppose degrees to which liberalism extends for each person advocating that the Constitution is a living, breathing document subject to changes fitting the times. Whether these people realize it, the end result is a government leviathan that will consume their freedoms. By its very nature, the growth of government intrudes upon the individual. It has happen before, it is happening now and it will happen again. And for these people, Cruz is at best a formidable opponent espousing opposing views in line with strict Constitutional constructionists. Such people are thoughtful, disagree with most of what Cruz says and does and are, “liberal.” They may be democrats or so-called “moderate” Republicans, but they are, in fact, liberal. They have a fundamentally different view of government and beyond this, there isn’t much to be said about them.
As for Cruz’s detractors who are not cognitive of what has been covered here, but continue using techniques dependent upon over-simplification in the face of a dearth of facts that would otherwise render their arguments invalid—well, they are ill-informed. The comedian to whom I referred at the outset, and who is generally astute, is someone I place in this category.
As for the rest of Cruz’s detractors—those who are cognitive of the facts or choose to ignore them and trash Cruz (and by default, his supporters)… These people are not only liberals (regardless of what they call themselves), but also people of less than desirable character (an example that comes to mind is a war hero from Arizona who lost a bid for the Presidency of the United States). These people, RINOs, whacko birds (the aforementioned hero’s term for Cruz), socialists, far left screamers and the educated who want nothing of the Republic designed by our founders and framers—these people fit Christopher Titus’s description quite nicely.
1 http://blog.heritage.org/2011/03/15/the-untouchable-23-6-billion, (Retrieved October 22, 2013).
2 http://hotair.com/archives/2013/10/18/cruz-i-didnt-come-to-the-senate-to-get-99-new-friends, (Transcription of video retrieved October 22, 2013).
OCTOBER 6, 2013
• The Constitution Is The Answer
Recently brought to my attention (by Martha Saltzgiver) were comments by a retired Constitutional Lawyer in Carrolton, Texas. After reading the entire Affordable Care Act (Obama Care), he enumerated a few of the ways the law was unconstitutional.
Of course, none of this is new in the way of news.
The economic impact is already being experienced: To avoid government imposed, “health care regulation,” there are dozens of major companies reducing employee hours to less than 30 and companies with just over 50 employees trimming workforces to under 50 for the same reason. The list of such companies is much greater than the examples being cited.
Insurance rates are skyrocketing and other insurance companies are throwing in the towel. The IRS, which practically everyone already despises, is hiring IRS agents to impose healthcare fines and regulation—in this way IRS agents are even involved with your healthcare. I can hardly think of a more intrusive government agency. All of this and more is, of course, a massive takeover of Constitutional government.
Are people concerned? Yes. Are they concerned enough to seek change? Maybe. But through a combination of ideology and ignorance, the mainstream media is complicit in this and getting the message out depends on you.
If not you, who? If not now, when?
This message is this: There are only two ways to ultimately reverse this destruction of our government (voting for Constitutionally-minded representatives and presidents is not enough).
The first way to reverse course is the path to most resistance and desperation: Violence. It is not the course to pursue.
It is the second way to reverse course that we must pursue. The framers of our Constitution foresaw a problem with a tyrannical congress. In fact, George Mason wouldn’t even sign on to a ratification of the Constitution so long as it was only the federal government empowered to amend the Constitution. He is recorded as having made note that a tyrannical Congress would never vote itself a limit of power.
And so it was that a second amendment process was included in the Constitution. In Article 5 of the Constitution, there is a provision for the two thirds of the States’ legislatures to call for a convention to propose amendments to the Constitution: The federal government MUST provide for this to happen and other than providing a “secretarial” role (so to speak), the federal government has NO authority, input or regulation in this process. Once the States have convened, they are to come up with amendments. The amendments then would need to be voted on and passage secured by two-thirds of the states. These amendments could fix all that has gone wrong before: They could trim away the fat that has been added to federal government and then further define the enumerated powers that have been unconstitutionally expanded. Proposed State amendments could further limit federal spending by imposing budget requirements, changes to and for the Supreme Court and even changes for Congress and our representatives. The amendments can address and correct unconstitutional intrusions on State and personal freedoms as well as our inherent rights.
For example: When the Supreme Court ruled that the dirt under the feet of a baby born in America made that baby an American citizen, that was in violation of the Constitution indicating that citizens were people, “subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.” In other words, a baby born to an illegal alien is no more subject to the jurisdiction of the United States for purposes of citizenship than is a baby born to a couple vacationing here from Mexico, Europe, Russia, Australia or any country.
Likewise, when Justice Black used the words of Thomas Jefferson to the Danbury Baptists that there must be a wall separating the church and state, Black knowingly misapplied the founder/framer’s meaning. In Jefferson’s letter he clearly explained that ANY law for or against the free expression of religion in the public, private or government sectors, would violate the Constitutional protection for freedom of (rather than from) religion. The Constitution does not bar the mention, discourse or appearance of religion and God in government. Rather, it advocates preventing the government mandating, as well as excluding, discourse about religion and the presence of God in government. That was the wall to which Jefferson referred. The “wall” was intended to prevent restriction OF religion.
I am sure many of my Christian friends would disagree with me and happily advocate a Federal mandate that would make abortion illegal across the 50 states. But, just as it is unconstitutional to federally protect abortion, it is unconstitutional to federally deny it. We are supposed to live under federalism: A federal government with specific enumerated powers and every other power not enumerated for the federal government, reserved to the States and their citizens. Abortion is not an enumerated power and it belongs in the purview of each state. The federal protection of Abortion that I find so despicable—just like the denial of it that I would embrace—is a matter for the people of each state.
In this way—and as it is the case in so many State laws—we each have a place to which to move if and when we cannot change or tolerate where we now live. Such a freedom cannot be found elsewhere in the world and if we do not take back Constitutional control of our government that is a freedom that will no longer exist in America.
So, in short then, the ONLY possible means to reverse all that has been done to tear down our county—including the so called Affordable Health Care Act—is Article 5 of the Constitution. We need to spread the word about the destructive and unconstitutional health care act, but more than this we also need to spread word of the solution.
It is the solution that the 50 united States (and not the Federal government) have as the most devastating weapon in our arsenal. With this one Constitutional clause we could legally, peacefully and Constitutionally turn our country into the Republic from which it has wandered. To read more about this, see the links in my blog (at www.dltolleson.com) or read the article here:
JULY 12, 2013
• The Power of The States
After more than a year’s absence from this blog, I had intended to write an entry entitled, “You Have Been Lied to,” or, “Lies In the American Non-Republic.” And while I might still write those, for now I’ve decided to write about the only remaining spark of life our country might have.
But first, let’s recap: America is in dire circumstances. Company healthcare mandates are delayed until after the next round of elections. This is due to the Federal government being unable to implement the new law. It is also due to the fact that implementation would have (and will) destroy the economy: That would not have improved the elections of healthcare supporters—and thus the delay.
Legitimate economic projections are all over the place—none of them good. And logic foretells what is coming. For example, if you run a company is it logical to avoid fines and healthcare expenses by reducing employees to less than 30 hours. How many of you can meet your bills on less than 30 hours of pay per week?
Insurance rates are going through the roof. Social Security and Medicare are teetering on the plunge into the abyss of insolvency in just a few years.
The government may be on the verge of passing sweeping immigration reforms that will make second class citizens out of illegal aliens. If that does occur all restrictions for, “legalized,” illegal aliens will then be found unconstitutional. That will be followed by economic disaster due to the initial influx of about 11 million people and their access to everything to which citizens have access. Furthermore, the 11 million number will increase over the next few years to easily somewhere above 40 million or more
The Financial system cannot support that.
While the top income tax rates are somewhere around 40%, the government could take 100% of the top earners’ income and it wouldn’t be enough to meet the federal spending of roughly 10.46 billion per day. The IRS has already targeted citizens, preventing them from forming nonprofit organizations and eliminating the ability of those citizens to solicit money for their political candidates
I could go on about the other problems related to regulatory agencies run amuck (the Supreme Court, for example, has backed the EPA in ruling that your expelled breath is pollution). There have been lies in the presidential administration, the deaths of Americans and cover-ups about those deaths: There is even ongoing intrusions into the phone records and e-mail of EVERY SINGLE AMERICAN CITZEN. Everyone has been spied on. Everyone. If you’re reading this, YOUR phone records and e-mail have been spied on.
Just a short couple of years ago all of this would have been considered fiction. Fear-mongering. But we now know it’s all real.
Elections might help, but it seems we are powerless to stop the federal government backed by a few men in black robes that decide the fate of our social morality.
We are totally powerless to stop any of it.
Or are we?
Mark Levin, an attorney and conservative talk show host of The Mark Levin Show (www.marklevinshow.com) was in Ronald Reagan’s Justice Department and also runs the Landmark Legal Foundation (https://www.landmarklegal.org) that has prevailed in suits over the IRS: He thinks we can alter the government.
He has brought to light the topic of his next book, The Liberty Amendments, and it is the power of the States.
It seems that our framers anticipated that our federal government might get out of hand and in our government’s foundation—the Constitution—provided a solution we’ve overlooked. They even discussed the matter in what has become known as the Federalist Papers. And what is it?
In Article 5 of the Constitution is found the following:
The key points I’ve rendered in italic. The layman’s translation is this: Two-thirds of the Legislatures of the States can bring forth proposed amendments to the Constitution—not Congress, as is the usual course of action, but the States. According to Levin it has only been attempted once and has since remained dormant.
But nonetheless, there it is:
Our federal government—the president—chooses to NOT enforce laws (and some call the laws broken simply because they aren’t enforced). The federal government has actually brought legal action against Arizona for trying to control illegal immigration. So if the federal government is against us in the States, our Constitutional framers gave us the power to change the changes.
This may sound like an over simplification—and it is insofar as the effort this would take. But we have a second way to amend the Constitution without fear of the process falling into the hands of people who would destroy the Constitution though a federally brought Constitutional Convention. We have a way to reign in an out-of-control, over-bearing and oppressive Federal government.
This is a way out and you can anticipate both supporters and detractors to begin discussing it. I, for one, will in the coming months follow this discussion very closely.