Tuesday, October 14, 2008

You want a solution? Here ya go:

The other day VA wrote in an entry at her blog condemning those who seem to have a real talent for being critical of people who would dare complain about the wrongs and injustices perpetrated by our government on the people of America yet do not offer any practicable solutions. It's as if these people think that if you don't have a ready-made point-by-point solution to offer them, then they are duty bound to try to silence you. Meanwhile they offer no solutions themselves, and as VA rightly pointed out in her post, merely engage in that which they so vehemently object to. Where I come from we call that "irrational."

Yes; I've been subjected to the exact same treatment by the exact same type personalities. I personally think these people just simply like to argue for the sake of propping up their own egos. But we must remember, this is the age of the "one-size-fits-all,ten-step program" for solving all your problems. The irony is that there are about a gazillion of these one-size-fits-all, ten-step programs for solving all your problems out there. LOL

But look, if you're one of the aforementioned people and you demand that complainers like myself offer a solution rather than just complain, boy do I have a humdinger for you! It was originally written as a comment to an entry over at Dr. Yeagley's place, but I couldn't get it to post there for some reason so I'm posting it here. But I forewarn you, it ain't no ten-stepper, if that's what you're lookin' for:

TM to Dr. Yeagley:

Dr. Yeagley,

I hope you decide to keep BadEagle.com up and running. As Mike said, we need all the patriots we can get and then some ... now more than ever! Popularity has nothing to do with it, principle has everything to do with it. Genuine Patriots willingly sacrifice themselves in the face of looming danger.

You're right about states' rights. The re-establishment of federalism as a governing principle in America is vital to our ultimate survival. Speaking of which, I think I need to return to my roots; to the fundamentals. It used to be, not so long ago, that I refused to refer to the national government as the "federal government," it being incorrect from a historical and an originalist perspective to refer to the national entity as anything other than just that. Using the term "federal government" is incorrect terminology precisely because there's nothing "federal" about a centralized national government which has more or less destroyed the federal principle in America. It's really a contradiction in terms. The correct denomination for the form of government the (original) U.S. Constitution establishes is a "Federal Representative Republic." Words mean something, and if we don't resolve to use these words properly as they apply to our government, the average American Joe will always associate the word "federal" with the national government, and will continue to operate in a brain dead world in which he has no clue what the founders intended by the term "federal;" he'll never understand the national-federal structure that the constitution establishes, and so on and so forth.

On this idea of secession...

While I think secession is an option which has to remain open to us, it is a last resort option because it means nothing less than all-out civil war. Can you imagine what an all-out 21st Century American civil war would look like?! It would make our other civil war look like child's play. So the secessionist movement (which seems to be gaining some momentum, by the way) in America is, in and of itself, an ill-conceived movement in my opinion. To repeat what's already been said before, "be careful what you wish for." As someone named Jake put it in a comment to a recent LA Times story about the secessionist movement,

"if we could somehow restore to the states enough rights to check the power of the federal government, secession would not be needed."

Jake is on to something here. He realizes that secession has to remain an option -- a last resort option -- to us, but I think I detect in his tone that Jake is effectively saying "there has to be a better way; surely someone knows of a way to restore the federal principle while avoiding the awful spectacle of an American civil war that secession from the union would most definitely bring about."

Happily for all of us there is such an option, a constitutional option, that we've never, as a unified group of states under the banner of a singular purpose, tried before. It's a little gem tucked away in Article V, U.S. Constitution that few Americans even know about. There are two legitimate ways, you see, of proposing amendments to the constitution, either the Congress does it within itself, or, the People do it through their state legislatures. Either way, though, the constitutional prescription must be followed. That simply means, in the latter case, that two thirds of the states must petition Congress to call a convention for proposing amendments. In such a case, the language of the article states that the Congress "shall" call a convention. Alexander Hamilton explained in Federalist no. 85 the language of this method to mean the obvious, that the language is preemtory, that it leaves no discretion to Congress. In other words, if these conditions are met, Congress must call a convention for proposing amendments. I should also clarify that this is not the same thing as calling a "constitutional convention," in which the whole of the constitution would be considered for revision or alteration. It is simply what the language in the article describes it as, a convention for proposing amendments, and if certain of those amendments are adopted by three fourths of the states then they become part of the constitution.

There are several reasons we should advocate for this method, and this method only, of setting our government aright, not the least of which is that it is the only method available to us that would effectively require the sanction of the whole people of the United States and would thus set off a nationwide debate involving all Americans of all ranks who have enough moral fortitude left in them to give a hoot about the life destroying nature of our present government. Many apathetic Americans would thus be aroused to make a contribution to the cause because they would know that their contribution would actually mean something, something significant.

Now, I'm well aware that there's an element out there ('conservatives' in particular) that fears basically any attempt or design to alter or change, or even clarify our constitution, and therefore, in knee-jerk fashion anytime the idea is brought forth, tries to quell it with loud declamations and ominous predictions about what amending the constitution portends. I admit that I'm not real sure what it is these people are trying to conserve. I've shown many many times that the ninth and tenth amendments aren't worth the paper they're written on, thus the U.S. Constitution isn't worth the paper it's written on. The ink was barely dry on the fourteenth amendment before the courts began to use it to destroy the last vestiges of freedom left to the states and to the People -- those constitutional rights and principles that the civil war itself did not destroy. I don't know about you and your readers, but I should rather live under a form of government in which I'm relatively sure what the terms and conditions are as opposed to a form of government in which its agents pretend it to be one thing yet is something altogether different in reality.

Let the debate begin...

Now if someone will come along and kindly reduce this solution to ten separate steps under one overarching purpose, then we can have a gazillion and one of these programs in existence. Any of you criticizers, you cynics and detractors out there wanna give 'er a shot, hmmmm? Thought not.


Joel S. Hirschhorn said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Joel S. Hirschhorn said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Terry Morris said...

Mr. Hirschhorn,

Thank you. You folks at FOAVC have done a fine job collecting the data on state petitions to the Congress for an Article V Convention and making it available to the public at your site. I highly recommend that my readers check the site out. I plan to add a permanent link to the site in the right sidebar of this blog under the "Links of Interest" section soon. Look for it.

As to your article, since the first paragraph was omitted in your initial post, and since it is a bit lengthy in any case for a blogger comment section, I hope you don't mind my reposting the article in a separate entry on the main page of this blog.

Thanks again.


Terry Morris said...

Joel S. Hirschhorn, co-founder of FOAVC, writes:

I hope you and others use the site of Friends of the Article V Convention at www.foavc.org to get all the facts about this important constitutional option, and become members. Here is a new article I just wrote.

Zeke said...

I do not agree with the often made statement that a vote of secession by one or more states would result in a second civil war. The reasons for this are many.

1. The first civil war is universally considered a terrible thing, even by those who consider it required.

2. The moral imperative that gave cover to the North in waging the war was "Slavery". This was indeed a major moral issue. What equivelant issue exists on the side of the new-Unionists. "You must help bail out Wall Street". "You must have Section 8 in your state or we will kill you." These are not compelling arguments.

3. The legality of secession was not decided by the civil war, on any basis other than "might makes right". Given the mass-media, internet, wide spread literacy, access to historical documents, etc. the weak case for the Union position of "indissolvable union" will be quickly revealed.

4. The main opponents of seccession, the left, will be hamstrung in urging war against seccesionists by their own ideology and rhetoric.

A. A large percentage are pacifists and oppose any war.

B. A larger percentage oppose "unjust" wars, which are invaiably described as the Federal USA forcing its will on smaller actors.

C. They emotionally support all claims to local autonomy over larger claims of universalism, as in Iraq.

D. They support popular elections as the "will of the people" and have not coherent ideology that would allow them to oppose a popular decision.

E. Some significant percentage of them are as sick of dealing with us as we are of dealing with them. "Let Wyoming secceed, we'll keep New York".

F. The Army is biased towards conservatives, red states and liberty lovers. No war would take place without a concerted appeal to soldiers in the "Blue State Army of Agressinon" to desert and support the Constitution and Liberty. The Blue States might not have much of an Army to fight with. Such appeals could not be blocked, as they were in the first Civil War due to ubiquitious communication.

G. It is unlikely in the extreme the New Unionists could restart a draft to support an unpopular war. Lincoln WAS able to do this.

H. Many of Lincoln's other illegal techniques, from censorship, to jailing opponents would create massive backlash in the Blue States, and defection from the cause of Forced Union were they attempted again.

For all these reasons I do not believe a Civil War in the USA would be the inevitable result of one or more states attempting to secede.

Terry Morris said...


First, thanks for the comments. I don't really care to address everything you wrote point by point, but I will say this, it's easy to be a pacifist in a society where it's safe to be a pacifist, if you know what I mean. For example, Canada has no need for a strong military because the United States is here to protect them and they know it. But beyond that, suffice it to say that we'll just have to agree to disagree on this. There's no truth more evident to my mind than that a United States fractured into two or more self-proclaimed independent nations cannot co-exist peacefully on the same continent.

The larger issue, however, is this:

Don't you agree that there is a better solution than secession and all that it portends? Don't you agree that the United States is stronger in union than in disunion? ...