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Posts Tagged ‘states’

On June 25, 2015, from the article, ‘Words no longer have meaning’: U.S. justice Scalia apoplectic on ‘pure applesauce’ Obamacare ruling, I pointed out Justice Scalia’s Obamacare wording hypocrisy, where he said that “words no longer have meaning” in reference to the majority 6-3 decision by the U.S. Supreme Court on whether “the State” referred only to the 13 U.S. States that have set up health care exchanges, or whether it also includes the U.S. federal government.

Scalia’s hypocrisy relates to him saying that the Second Amendment pertaining to the right to keep and bear arms allows for reasonable restrictions when it clearly says that right “shall not be infringed.”

So who is he to claim that “words no longer have meaning” in the context of this case, and given the scathing nature of his dissenting opinion, I find it appropriate to call him out on his hypocrisy in this regard.

From an intensive layman’s study of the U.S. Constitution over the years, I tend to suspect he’s right with his decision in this case, as the words “the United States” is used in both the Constitution and the United States Code to refer to the U.S. federal government, whereas “States” are used to the several states.

Check out the comments section for my various comments and responses, including from someone who chastised me for allegedly using hyperbole in saying:

Scalia has no credibility in taking exception with the Court’s interpretation of words, since he misinterprets the Second Amendment, which clearly says the right of the people to keep and bear arms “shall not be infringed,” in saying that reasonable gun control limits are allowed.

For more on Justice Scalia, see my article, Charlie Rose’s interview with U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.

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Dr. Edwin Vieira, author of The Sword and Sovereignty, was on the Power Hour with Joyce Riley on July 28, 2014, and provided an excellent and concise explanation of “a well-regulated Militia,” with reference to the United States and its Constitution.

– The Department of Homeland Security is unconstitutional
– A “well-regulated Militia” means statutory authorization and regulation by the several States, and doesn’t include privately-run militias
– The definition of Militia is best expressed by the Constitution of Virginia, which is the whole body of the people
– Exemptions could be given to most for completing a first-aid course, for example
– Women originally not part of the Militia because they were not legally emancipated, but would now be considered part of the Militia
– Age restrictions in place (originally up to 44 years old) in the 1700s before modern medicine could alleviate these conditions, and modern society allows individuals to serve in other capacities, like office work
– The National Guard isn’t a Militia, with the proof being that there is no notice given to all citizens to participate in it
– The Militia is intended to “execute the laws of the Union,” meaning that there is to be no federal agencies that perform a police or para-military function outside of the Militia
– Police abuses could be kept in check by the Militia, which is composed of the body of the people
– Constitutional Militias could be brought in any time — the only thing stopping that is the political class and a lack of citizen demand for them from State officials

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U.S. ConstitutionThe no double jeopardy provision of the Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution reads:

nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb;

The double jeopardy “loophole” is this; that where the accused is acquitted of a state crime, he/she is then tried for the same federal crime, and vice-versa.

The original intent of the Bill of Rights was to only limit the newly-created federal government, and not the States. Then, subsequent to the American Civil War, parts of the Bill of Rights have been progressively incorporated against the States.

It wasn’t that the principles of the Bill of Rights shouldn’t apply to the States, but the Bill of Rights didn’t apply to them for two main reasons:

1) Most of the States already had similar bills.

2) A federal Bill of Rights would be used to federalize the application of the Bill of Rights, which could lead to bad decisions applying to the entire country and subvert the federal design of the government, with the States sovereign within their respective jurisdictions.

Therefore, by original design, this “loophole” wasn’t a loophole because the federal government understood that it had no power to define and prosecute crimes that were completely within the exclusive jurisdiction of the States.

Where it became a problem and a loophole, was when the federal government stepped beyond its constitutional bounds and defined crimes that it had no valid constitutional basis for doing so.

The few and defined federal crimes in the Constitution are treason, piracy, counterfeiting and crimes against the laws of nations.

I don’t share the view of some that Congress had no power to define additional laws.

Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution specifically grants Congress the power to:

To exercise exclusive Legislation in all Cases whatsoever, over such District (not exceeding ten Miles square) as may, by Cession of particular States, and the acceptance of Congress, become the Seat of the Government of the United States, and to exercise like Authority over all Places purchased by the Consent of the Legislature of the State in which the Same shall be, for the Erection of Forts, Magazines, Arsenals, dock-Yards, and other needful Buildings;

This gave Congress the power to define any crimes it wanted that would apply to this District.

Outside of that District, I argue that Congress still has the power to define additional crimes. For example, crimes relating to its power to coin money. And we see from the 1792 Coinage Act, that death was the penalty for debasing the currency.

This is further evidenced by Article II, Section 4, which states:

The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.

The mention of “other high Crimes” implies that Congress can define and punish other “high Crimes”, not only within the District, but outside, because of the mention of “all civil Officers”.

But, the restriction upon defining new crimes is whether it relates to what is “necessary and proper” for carrying out Congress’ 18 enumerated powers.

Therefore, federal “crimes” relating to cross-state drug “offences”, cross-state “terrorism” “offences”, etc., are completely invalid, and this is where the double jeopardy loophole applies.

How to deal with the federal government going beyond its constitutional boundaries in defining and punishing non-crimes? The States should nullify them by preventing state officials from providing any support or co-operation for the prosecution of these federal non-crimes.

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Exposing Faux CapitalismOn the May 12, 2013 inaugural episode of Exposing Faux Capitalism with Jason Erb on Truth Frequency Radio, I covered the following articles:

1) The U.S. Constitution doesn’t say money should be gold or silver coin

2) The Constitution doesn’t insist on a gold or silver-backed currency

3) The Constitution doesn’t prohibit both the states and federal government from issuing fiat money

4) The gold double standard

5) A Money Power trap: Saying that private money creation is the problem

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President Barack Obama and Warren Buffett in t...

I didn’t have as much patience as some did, and tuned out near the beginning when he talked about spending money to hire teachers and police officers, and instructed the States that they need to make high school mandatory until age 18.

Here in Canada, our Prime Minister wouldn’t dare get involved in the provincial issue of education to the degree Obama did.

He indirectly brought up Warren Buffett, who pays a lower effective tax rate that his secretary. I wrote an article in 2010 about Buffett’s three major inconsistencies. He said derivatives are weapons of financial mass destruction, yet subjected his shareholders to billions in losses from them, he said you shouldn’t buy banks, since they can cook their books 10 ways from Sunday, yet he bought a big share in Goldman Sachs and then Bank of America, and he said not to invest in capital-intensive businesses, only to make his largest-ever investment in a highly capital-intensive railroad.

Since then, Buffett has claimed that making Tim Geithner the Treasury Secretary was an excellent decision, and that Bernanke did a great job since the 2008 financial collapse, and deserved his reappointment.

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Coins

Both Congress’ enumerated power to coin money (from any metal), and the power of the States to only make gold and silver legal tender, were powers that didn’t necessarily have to be exercised.

A power is something you can exercise, or not exercise. This is clearly evidenced by Congress’ other enumerated powers, such as the power to declare war, or to borrow money on the credit of the United States.

There was an insidious nature to the Coinage Act of 1792, in that it forced American taxpayers to pay for the cost of minting the gold and silver brought to be minted (see Section 14 on page 249), which was overwhelmingly owned by wealthy interests.

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Constitutional Convention, 1787

The Preamble to the United States Constitution states:

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

Note the use of “Constitution for the United States of America” and not “Constitution of the United States.

From the Fourteenth Amendment’s mention of “Constitution of the United States,” it is argued that the original intent of the Founding Fathers was subverted in referring to a Constitution of the United States as a single entity, as opposed to a Constitution for the United States of America as a union of sovereign independent states.

However, if you look at the context, it’s specifically referring to the oath of office taken by all officers and legislative members of the States, and all officers and Congressional members of the United States, which includes the President of the United States.

From the original Constitution, the presidential oath or affirmation of office is:

I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.

Therefore, it is clear from the Constitution that the Founding Fathers who signed it interchangeably referred to both a “Constitution for the United States of America” and a “Constitution of the United States,” without drawing any particular distinction between them.

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