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Understanding the Constitution

Article V Convention: How “Individuals of Insidious Views” Are Stealing Our Constitution

By Publius Huldah

Q: How are amendments to the federal Constitution made?
A: Article V of our Constitution provides two method of amending the Constitution:

  1. Congress proposes amendments and presents them to the States for ratification; or
  2. When 2/3 of the States apply for it, Congress calls a convention to propose amendments.

Q: Which method was used for our existing 27 amendments?
A:  The first method was used for all 27 amendments including the Bill of Rights which were introduced into Congress by James Madison. 3

Q:  Is there a difference between a constitutional convention, con con, or Article V Convention?
A:  These names have been used interchangeably during the last 50 years.

Q:  What is a “convention of states”?
A:  That is what the people pushing for an Article V convention now call it. 

Q: Who is behind this push for an Art. V convention?
A:  The push to impose a new Constitution by means of an Article V convention (and using a “balanced budget” amendment as justification) started in 1963 with the Ford and Rockefeller Foundations.  1    Today, it is pushed by:

Q:  Why do they want an Article V Convention?
A:  The only way to get rid of our existing Constitution and Bill of Rights is to have an Article V convention where they can re-write our Constitution.  Jordan Sillars, Communications Director for Michael Farris’ “Convention of States”, said:

“… 3. I think the majority of Americans are too lazy to elect honest politicians. But I think some men and women could be found who are morally and intellectually capable of re-writing the Constitution” [boldface mine].

Q: How can they impose a new constitution if ¾ of the States don’t agree to it?
A: Only amendments require ratification by ¾ of the States (see Art. V). But a new constitution would have its own new method of ratification – it can be whatever the drafters want.  For example, the proposed Constitution for the Newstates of America is ratified by a referendum called by the President (See Art. XII, section 1).

Q: Can a convention be stopped from proposing a new Constitution?
A:  No.  Once the delegates are duly appointed & assembled, they are acting under the inherent authority of A People to alter or abolish their form of government [Declaration of Independence, 2nd para]; and have the sovereign power to do whatever they want at the convention.

Q: Is this what happened at the Federal Convention of 1787?
A:  Yes.  Pursuant to Article XIII of The Articles of Confederation, the Continental Congress resolved on February 21, 1787 (p 71-74) to call a convention to be held at Philadelphia “for the sole and express purpose of revising the Articles of Confederation”.  But the delegates ignored this limitation and wrote a new Constitution.  Because of this inherent authority of delegatesit is impossible to stop it from happening at another convention.  And George Washington, James Madison, Ben Franklin, and Alexander Hamilton won’t be there to protect you.

Q: Did the delegates at the Convention of 1787 introduce a new mode of ratification for the new Constitution?
A:  Yes. The Articles of Confederation required the approval of all 13 States for amendments to the Articles to be ratified.  But the new Constitution provided it would become effective if only 9 of the 13 States ratified it (Art. VII, cl. 1, U.S. Constitution).

Q:  Who would be delegates at a Convention?
A:  Either Congress appoints whomever they want; or State governments appoint whomever they want.

Q: Who would be chairman at a convention?
A: We don’t know.  But chairmen have lots of power – and George Washington won’t be chairman.

Q: But if the States appoint the delegates, won’t a convention be safe?
A: Who controls your State?  They will be the ones who choose the delegates if Congress permits the States to appoint delegates.  Are the people who control your State virtuous, wise, honest, and true?  [Tell PH if they are, so she can move there.]

Q: But aren’t the States the ones to rein in the federal government?
A: They should have been, but the States have become major consumers of federal funding.  Federal funds make up almost 35% of the States’ annual budgets. The States don’t want to rein in the feds – they don’t want to lose their federal funding.

Q: Did Thomas Jefferson say the federal Constitution should be amended every 20 years?
A: No! In his letter to Samuel Kercheval of July 12, 1816, Jefferson wrote about the Constitution for the State of Virginia, which he said needed major revision.  And remember James Madison’s words in Federalist No. 45 (3rd para from the end):

The powers delegated by the proposed Constitution to the federal government are few and defined. Those which are to remain in the State governments are numerous and indefinite. The former will be exercised principally on external objects, as war, peace, negotiation, and foreign commerce … The powers reserved to the several States will extend to all the objects which … concern the lives, liberties, and properties of the people, and the internal order, improvement, and prosperity of the State.” [boldface mine]

The powers delegated to the feds are “few and defined” – what’s to amend?  All else is reserved to the States or the People – so State Constitutions would need more frequent amendments.  Do you see?

Q:  Did Alexander Hamilton say in Federalist No 85 (next to last para) that a convention is safe?
A:  No!  He said, respecting the ratification of amendments, that we “may safely rely on the disposition of the State legislatures to erect barriers against the encroachments of the national authority”.  But today, our State legislatures don’t protect us from federal encroachments because:

  • We have been so dumbed down by progressive education that we know nothing & can’t think;
  • State legislatures have been bought off with federal funds; and
  • Our public and personal morality is in the sewer.

Q: Did Our Framers – the ones who signed The Constitution – think conventions a fine idea?
A:  No!

“Conventions are serious things, and ought not to be repeated.”

  • Alexander Hamilton wrote of:

“…the utter improbability of assembling a new convention, under circumstances in any degree so favorable to a happy issue, as those in which the late convention met, deliberated, and concluded…”  Federalist No. 85 (9th para)

“3… an election into it would be courted by the most violent partizans on both sides; it … would be the very focus of that flame which has already too much heated men of all parties; would no doubt contain individuals of insidious views, who under the mask of seeking alterations popular in some parts but inadmissible in other parts of the Union might have a dangerous opportunity of sapping the very foundations of the fabric. … it seems scarcely to be presumable that the deliberations of the body could be conducted in harmony, or terminate in the general good. Having witnessed the difficulties and dangers experienced by the first Convention, which assembled under every propitious circumstance, I should tremble for the result of a Second, meeting in the present temper of America…” [boldface mine]

Q:  Do we have “violent partizans” or “individuals of insidious views” who seek a “dangerous opportunity to sap the very foundations of the fabric” of our country?
A: Yes, and they have been pushing for an Article V convention since 1963.

Q:  What did our Framers say about the purpose of amendments to the Constitution?
A:

  • the novelty and difficulty of what they were doing would require periodic revision (Mr. Gerry on June 5, 1787);
  • remedy defects in the Constitution (Hamilton on Sep. 10, 1787);
  • useful amendments would address the “organization of the government, not … the mass of its powers” (Federalist No. 85, 13th para); and
  • “amendment of errors” & “useful alterations” suggested by experience (Federalist No. 43 at 8.) 3

Q: But those pushing for a convention say the remedy for politicians who violate the Constitution is to amend the Constitution.
A:  Yes, that is their crazy claim:  that even though for over a century, the feds have been usurping hundreds of powers not delegated in the Constitution, all we have to do is amend the Constitution, and everyone will start obeying it. 4

Q: But they say the feds would obey future amendments because the feds haven’t violated recent amendments, such as women’s suffrage.
A: Of the 15 amendments ratified since the 12th in 1804; 10 increased the powers of the feds (13th, 14th, 15th, 16th, 17th, 18th, 19th, 23rd, 24th, 26th); and 4 were “housekeeping” amendments (20th, 22nd, 25th, 27th) – so of course the feds “obeyed” those. 5

Q: What about their claim that the feds violate the Constitution because they don’t understand it?
A:  Rubbish! Our Constitution is so simple that Hamilton said The People were “the natural guardians of the Constitution”. The Oath of office at Art. VI, clause 3, implicitly requires the feds to learn it.  For phrases the feds have perverted – such as the “interstate commerce”, “general welfare” & “necessary and proper” clauses, a quick look into The Federalist Papers reveals the original intent.  I illustrate that here and elsewhere.

Q: How do we get rid of the bad amendments such as the 16th &17th?
A: Repeal them the same way we repealed the 18th amendment.  Instead of sending to Congress people who don’t know the Constitution; send people who know the Constitution and commit to repealing the bad amendments.  And if they don’t act to repeal them, fire them!

Q:  Why was the “convention method” put in Article V?
A: This chart compiles the references in Madison’s Journal of the Federal Convention of 1787 to what became Article V.

  • Law professor John A. Eidsmoe suggests the convention method of Article V was added rather hastily, at the time when the delegates were closing their deliberations, and this provision did not receive the careful attention given to most other provisions of the Constitution.
  • It may also have been a compromise designed to induce Gov. Morris, Gerry, Mason, & Randolph to sign the Constitution.  6

Q: Why can’t what happens at the convention be controlled by federal or State laws?
A: We are naïve and tell ourselves that people will “play by the rules”.  So we assume all we have to do is make some laws saying delegates can’t exceed the scope of the call, and everyone will obey it.

But if they don’t, who is going to enforce these laws you have so much faith in? The feds? Obama would love the constitution for the Newstates of America – it makes him dictator!  He won’t prosecute delegates who violate the call. Your State government?  They sold you out to the feds long ago. Errant delegates will be protected by the feds.   It doesn’t matter what a law says if it isn’t enforced.

Ever since 1963, globalists have intended to use an Article V convention as the means for imposing a new Constitution on us.  Today, George Soros – the destroyer of countries – is financing the push for a convention.  Don’t let him and his minions destroy America.

Conclusion

This little chart illustrates our Constitution & Declaration and the enumerated powers delegated to the federal government.  For 100 years, we elected politicians who ignore them. We don’t understand that the amendments proposed by Michael Farris, Mark Levin,Randy Barnett, & Nick Dranias increase the powers of the federal government because we don’t know the list of enumerated powers in the Constitution. You could remedy that:  Print out the chart and read the Constitution & Declaration!

As The Blue Tail Gadfly said, even though “the Constitution is not being enforced, it still declares this federal government LAWLESS! The true rule of law is still on our side, but not for much longer if the Constitution is allowed to be foolishly altered.”

Endnotes:

1   http://patriotcoalition.com/docs/Ford-Pursuit-of-Globalism.pdf

2 Those pushing for a convention are not telling the truth about what Madison said in his letter to Turberville.  The only way you can know who is telling the truth is to study the letter.

3 Madison did not endorse the “convention method” of proposing amendments.  He always said that when States want amendments, they should instruct their congressional delegation to pursue it:

  •  In his letter of 1788 to Turberville, he speaks of the two methods of proposing amendments:

“2. A Convention cannot be called … without the previous application of ⅔ of the State legislatures…The difficulties … must …be much greater than will attend the origination of amendments in Congress, which may be done at the … [instruction] of a single State Legislature… ”

  • How was the Bill of Rights handled?  On May 5, 1789, Rep. Bland (p. 258-261) introduced into Congress a petition from Virginia for an Art. V Convention to propose amendments.  On June 8, 1789, Madison (p. 448-460) circumvented Bland and introduced the amendments for Congress to propose to the States.  On September 24, 1789, Congress sent them to the States for ratification.

4 If your spouse violates the marriage vows, amend the vows and your marriage will be saved!
If motorists violate the speed limit, amend the speed limit and safety will be restored!
When people violate the Ten Commandments, amend the Ten Commandments!
When politicians violate the Constitution, amend the Constitution, and all will obey it!

 5 It is important to understand that the proposed amendments drafted by Randy Barnett, Mark Levin, Nick Dranias, and Michael Farris all increase the powers of the federal government by legalizing powers they have already usurped – or they delegate new powers to the federal government.

6 The Constitution was a product of compromise:  Alexander Hamilton was an abolitionist – but the Constitution permitted slavery.  James Madison wanted to stop the importation of slaves immediately (Federalist No. 42, 6th para); but Art. I, Sec. 9, clause 1 permitted it to continue 20 more years. Hamilton said the Constitution wasn’t perfect, but “is the best that the present views and circumstances of the country will permit” (Federalist No. 85, 6th – 8th paras).  The “convention” provision of Art. V seems to have been added – on the last day of deliberations (Sep. 15, 1787) – to induce Gerry, Mason, & Randolph to sign the Constitution.  But they still refused to sign. PH

Note: This last series of Questions and Answers was suggested by an esteemed colleague:

Q: Are there unanswered questions about an Article V Convention?
A: Yes!  Article V is utterly silent about the following and more:

  • How would delegates be selected?  And who would select them: Congress? The States? A national Referendum?
  • Would the States even be represented at the convention? If so, how many delegates and/or how many votes would each State have at a convention?
  • Would a convention be open or closed to the public and the media?  (The Convention of 1787 was closed.)
  • Could a convention be limited to consideration of a single amendment, or several amendments?  [The plural language of Article V, "a convention for proposing amendments," suggests the convention could not be limited to a single amendment.]
  • Could a convention consider an entirely new constitution?
  • How would state calls for a convention be tabulated? For example:   If 20 states call for a convention to consider a balanced budget amendment; 10 states call for a convention to consider a term limits amendment; and 4 states call for a convention to consider a right-to-life amendment, will these all be counted together to constitute 34 state calls for a convention?  And will the convention be authorized to consider all three amendments even though none of them individually have been called for by 34 states?  May it consider other amendments?   Must all of the state calls for a convention agree on the precise wording of the amendment to be considered?  And could a convention alter the wording of the proposed amendment, or must it be passed or rejected in exactly the form the states called for?   Will state calls for a convention many years ago be counted in determining whether 34 states have called for a convention?  For example, in the 1970s and 1980s about 32 states called for a convention to consider a balanced budget amendment.  If two more states called for a convention today, would that constitute 34 states?  Article V says nothing about any time limit on such calls.
  •  If a state calls for a convention, may the state later rescind its call?  Article V is silent about this question.  Several of the states that called for a convention in the 1970s and 1980s later rescinded their calls, but no court has ever determined whether those rescissions are valid.
  • What rules would a convention follow, and who would make those rules?  Article V says if two-thirds of the states apply for a convention, “Congress … shall call a convention.”  Since Congress and Congress alone calls a convention, presumably Congress and Congress alone has authority to make rules for a convention — rules for delegate selection, voting, election of officers, agenda, scope of business, and other matters.  What if the Senate and the House cannot agree on rules for a convention?  Nothing in Article V gives the states any authority whatsoever to demand that a convention follow certain rules, or to condition their calls for a convention with the requirement that certain rules or limitations be followed.
  • If Congress can make rules for a convention and does so, what guarantee exists that the convention will abide by those rules?

The plain fact is, the Constitution is utterly silent about all of these questions.  As convention proponents confidently and dogmatically proclaim their answers to these questions, please ask yourself:  Do they have any authority for their claims?  Are you willing to just take their word for it?

Q:  Why are convention proponents so certain that a convention will be run by constitutional conservatives?
A:  This is a complete mystery.  There is no such guarantee.  Considering liberal dominance of the media, law schools, well-funded legal foundations, and state and federal governments, liberal dominance of a convention is not only possible but probable.

Q:  Is the drive for a convention led by conservatives?
A:  Some conservatives support a convention, along with numerous liberals and liberal organizations who are waiting in the wings to jump in and dominate a convention once it has been called.  But many conservatives strongly oppose a convention.  So please do not be misled into thinking support for a convention is the “default” conservative position.

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February 27, 2014 Posted by | Article V, Article V Convention, constitutional convention, Convention of States project, Jordan Sillars, re-writing the Constitution | , , , , , | 27 Comments

Balanced Budget Amendments (BBA) Gut Our Constitution And Don’t Reduce Spending

By Publius Huldah

Q:  Doesn’t our Constitution already provide for controlling federal spending?
A:  Yes.  It lists the purposes for which Congress may spend money.  Spending is limited by the “enumerated powers” listed in the Constitution:

  • If it’s on the list of powers delegated to Congress or the President, Congress may lawfully appropriate funds for it.  Read the Constitution and highlight the delegated powers – then you will know what Congress may lawfully spend money on.
  • If it’s not listed, Congress may not lawfully spend money on it.

Q: What is the connection between the Oath of office (Art. VI, cl. 3) and federal spending?
A: All federal and State officials take an Oath to support the federal Constitution.  The Constitution lists what Congress may lawfully spend money on.  When people in Congress spend money on objects not listed in the Constitution; and when State officials accept federal funds for objects not listed (race to the top, common core, etc.) they violate their Oath to support the Constitution.

Q:  Are the federal departments of Education, Agriculture, Labor, Energy, Housing & Urban Development, Health & Human Services, DHS, etc., etc., constitutional?
A:  No!

  • Power over education, agriculture, labor relations, energy, etc., etc., was NOWHERE in the Constitution delegated to the federal government.  Those powers were reserved by the States or the People.
  • DHS – a national police force under the President’s control – is becoming our version of the East German STASI. Yet the States colluded with the feds in nationalizing law enforcement because they wanted the federal funds and military equipment.

Q:  How did we get a national debt of over $17 trillion, plus trillions more in unfunded liabilities?
A:  Congress spent on objects for which it has no constitutional authority, such as teaching Chinese prostitutes how to drink responsibly, bailouts of private businesses, welfare handouts, farming programs, education schemes, and grants paid to States to bribe them into implementing unconstitutional federal programs.  It was the unconstitutional spending which gave us this crushing debt.

Q: The 10th Amendment says all powers not delegated to the federal government by the Constitution are reserved to the States or to the People.  What happened to these reserved powers?
A: The States sold them to the federal government. The States have become administrative subdivisions of the federal government, and their aim is to siphon as much money as possible from the federal government.

Q: What should we do about the unconstitutional spending?
A:  We must eliminate pork.  We must systematically dismantle unconstitutional federal departments & agencies.  Except that the Department of Education should be shut down, and its bureaucrats sent home, by this Friday at 5:00 p.m.  All these functions must be restored to The States or The People.

Why BBAs Are Destructive

Q: Why won’t a BBA fix our debt problem?
A: They don’t address the cause of the problem: Congress spends where they have no constitutional authority to spend.  The BBAs don’t eliminate the unconstitutional spending; and they place no limits on the amount of the unconstitutional spending.

Q: Is a BBA harmful?
A:  Yes.  All versions of the BBA legalize spending which is now illegal and unconstitutional as outside the scope of powers delegated to Congress or the President.

Q: Would a BBA fundamentally transform our Constitution?
A:  Yes.  All versions of the BBA amend out the enumerated powers limitations on the federal government and transform the federal government into one of general & unlimited powers where the feds may spend money on whatever they want as long as they don’t exceed the spending limits “imposed” by the BBA.

Q: So a BBA changes the constitutional criterion for spending?
A:  Yes!  All versions of the BBA change the criterion from:

  • WHAT Congress spends money on (it must be an enumerated power), to
  • A LIMIT on total spending where Congress can spend money on whatever they want.

Q:  How are spending limits in the various versions of the BBA set?
A:

  • by the amount they take from us in taxes, or
  • by a certain percentage of the GDP, or
  • by the additional amounts they borrow to finance their spending.

Q: Can these limits on spending be raised?
A:  Yes!  In most versions of the BBA, Congress can vote to raise the spending limit (just as they vote every few months to raise the debt limit).  In the version of the BBA by Nick Dranias and Compact for America, Congress and at least 26 States can vote at any time to raise the spending limit.

Not only do the BBAs fail to address the cause of the problem (Congress spends on unconstitutional objects); none of them limit the amount of Congress’ spending because the spending limits can be raised whenever they want to raise them.

So!  Just as Congress votes every few months to raise the debt ceiling; they can vote whenever they want to raise the spending limit.

Q: What about Mark Levin’s amendment “to limit federal spending” (page 73 of his book)?
A:  Levin’s amendment makes lawful the spending which is now unconstitutional.  And his amendment does nothing to control spending:

  • Levin substitutes a “budget” [which permits spending on whatever people in the federal government want] 1 for the enumerated powers listed in the Constitution; and,
  • While it pretends to limit spending to income, it actually permits Congress to suspend the spending limit and to continue to raise the national debt limit.

So!  Like all other BBAs, Levin’s legalizes the present unconstitutional spending and does nothing to curb spending.  It legalizes the status quo.  And it guts our Constitution by erasing the enumerated powers limitations on spending.

Q: What about Randy Barnett’s version of a BBA?  [See Barnett’s 8th amendment here.]
A: Randy Barnett, law professor, redefines “unbalanced budget” to mean a budget where the national debt is greater than it was the previous year.  [Yes, you read that right.]

Barnett’s amendment doesn’t address the unconstitutional spending which caused the massive debt.

And it delegates sweeping new powers to the President to stop funding anything he doesn’t want funded.  E.g., it permits him to ban appropriations authorized by the Constitution, such as all funding for our military (which is authorized by Art. I, Sec. 8, clauses 11-14).

Q: What is the real purpose of all versions of the BBA?
A:  The sole purpose is to remove the enumerated powers limitations on the federal government and give it general & unlimited powers.

Folks! You must read the texts of the proposed BBAs and see what they actually say.  Do not stop with the name and just read in your own understanding of what it means to “balance a budget”.

For more information on various versions of the BBA see:

https://publiushuldah.wordpress.com/2014/02/10/balancing-the-budget-or-adding-a-national-sales-tax-to-the-income-tax/

https://publiushuldah.wordpress.com/2011/06/27/why-the-balanced-budget-amendment-is-a-hoax-and-a-deadly-trap/

https://publiushuldah.wordpress.com/2011/02/23/why-the-balanced-budget-amendment-is-the-worst-idea-ever/

Endnotes:

1 The federal government didn’t have a budget until the Budget Act of 1921, which purported to grant budget making power (taxes & appropriations) to the President.

The Budget Act is unconstitutional.  Article I, Sec. 8, cl. 1, delegates to Congress Power to lay and collect Taxes; and Art. I, Sec. 9, next to last clause, delegates to Congress Power to make appropriations:

“No Money shall be drawn from the Treasury, but in Consequence of Appropriations made by Law; and a regular Statement and Account of the Receipts and Expenditures of all public Money shall be published from time to time.”

Before the Budget Act of 1921, Congress made appropriations for items listed in the Constitution as the need arose; determined the taxes, and kept records of both. PH

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February 19, 2014 Posted by | Balanced Budget Amendment | , , , | 6 Comments

Balancing the Budget? Or Adding A National Sales Tax To The Income Tax?

By Publius Huldah

The stated purpose of Compact for America, Inc. is to get a balanced budget amendment (BBA) ratified.  Here is their proposed BBA.  State Legislators recently introduced it in Arizona. 1

The gap between what this BBA pretends to do – and what it actually does – is enormous. It has nothing to do with “balancing the budget” – it is about slipping in a new national sales tax or value-added tax in addition to the existing federal income tax.

We have become so shallow that we look no further than a name – if it sounds good, we are all for it.  We hear, “balanced budget amendment”, and think, “I have to balance my budget; they should have to balance theirs.”  So we don’t read the amendment, we just assume they will have to balance theirs the same way we balance ours – by cutting spending.

But that is not what the BBA does.  In effect, it redefines “balancing the budget” to mean spending no more than your income plus the additional debt you incur to finance your spending.  To illustrate:  If your income is $100,000 a year; but you spend $175,000 a year, you “balance” your budget by borrowing the additional $75,000.  See?

Under the BBA, Congress may continue to spend whatever it likes and incur as much new debt as it pleases – as long as 26 States agree.  And since the States have become major consumers of federal funding, who doubts that they can’t continue to be bought?  Federal grants make up almost 35% of the States’ annual budgets!  The States are addicted to federal funds – who thinks they won’t agree to get more money?

The BBA enshrines Debt as a permanent feature of our Country; gives it constitutional approval; does nothing to reduce spending or “balance the budget”; authorizes a new national tax; and wipes out the “enumerated powers” limitation on the federal government.

Let’s look at the BBA, section by section, using plain and honest English.  And then let’s look at how our Framers wrote our Constitution to strictly control federal spending.

Compact for America’s BBA

Section 1 says the federal government may not spend more than they take from you in taxes or add to the national debt. [Yes, you read that right.]

Section 2 accepts debt as a permanent feature of our Country – the “Authorized Debt”. This is the maximum amount of debt the federal government may incur at any given point in time.

  • Initially, when the Amendment is ratified, the “authorized debt” may not be more than 105% of the then existing national debt.  So!  If the national debt is $20 trillion when the Amendment is ratified, the federal government may not initially add more than 105% of    $20 trillion [or $1 trillion] to the national debt.
  • After that initial addition to the national debt, the “authorized debt” may not be increased unless it is approved by State Legislatures as provided in Section 3.

Section 3 says whenever Congress wants, it may increase the national debt if 26 of the State Legislatures agree.  [Yes, you read that right.]

Section 4 says whenever the national debt exceeds 98% of “the debt limit set by Section 2”, the President shall “impound” sufficient expenditures so that the national debt won’t exceed the “authorized debt”.  And if the President doesn’t do this, Congress may impeach him!

This is a hoot, Folks!  I’ll show you:

  •  No debt limit is set by Section 2!  The national debt can be increased at any time if Congress gets 26 State Legislatures to agree.  Can 26 States be bought?
  •  Section 6 defines “impoundment” as “a proposal not to spend all or part of a sum of money appropriated by Congress”.  Who believes Congress will impeach the President 2 for failing to “impound” an appropriation made by Congress?

Section 5 says any new or increased federal “general revenue tax” must be approved by 2/3 of the members of both houses of Congress.

Now pay attention, because this is a monstrous trick to be played on you:  Section 6 defines “general revenue tax” as “any income tax, sales tax, or value-added tax” levied by the federal government.

And when you read the first sentence of Section 5 with the definition of “general revenue taxin place of “general revenue tax”, you see that it says:

“No bill that provides for a new or increased income tax, sales tax, or value-added tax shall become law unless approved by a two-thirds roll call vote…” 

 Do you see?  This permits Congress to impose a national sales tax or value added tax in addition to the income tax, 3 if 2/3 of both houses agree.  [Yes, you read that right.]

But the trickery of the drafters of this evil piece of work is even worse.  Section 5 also says that any bill for a new sales tax which would replace the federal income tax need only be approved by a simple majority of the members of both houses.

This makes most readers believe that the income tax would be replaced by a sales tax.

But the Amendment does not require Congress to introduce a sales tax to replace the income tax. [Remember, that sales tax requires only a simple majority to get passed.]

Whereas it authorizes Congress to impose a sales tax or value-added tax in addition to the income tax[This sales tax requires a 2/3 majority to get passed.]

Do you see? Are they tricky or what!

And which option will Congress choose?

Section 6 sets forth the definitions for the amendment.  As you see, you must always read the definitions and apply them to the text.

Section 7 says the Amendment is “self-enforcing”.  Rubbish!  No Constitution or amendment is “self-enforcing”.  There is only one way to enforce our Constitution:  WE THE PEOPLE, who are “the natural guardians of the Constitution” (Federalist No. 16, next to last para), enforce it by learning it and by throwing out politicians who ignore it. And we must always be on guard against the wolves who seek to destroy it.

Nick Dranias, on the Board of Directors for the Compact for America , is a constitutional lawyer.  History professor, Kevin R. C. Gutzman, on the Advisory Council, is a lawyer. Other prominent lawyers and a 5th Circuit Court Judge, are on the Council. They all know what their BBA really does.  For a chilling disclosure of who some of these people are on the Council, see investigative journalist Kelleigh Nelson’s paper on News With Views.

How Does Our Constitution Control Federal Spending?

Our Constitution lists – itemizes – every power WE THE PEOPLE delegated to the federal government when we ratified the Constitution.  These are the “enumerated powers”.  Article I, §8 lists most of the powers delegated to Congress for the Country at large: 4

  • immigration office (Art. I, §8, cl.4)
  • mint (Art. I, §8, cl. 5)
  • a few criminal laws (e.g., Art. I, §8, cl. 6)
  • post offices & post roads (Art. I, §8, cl. 7)
  • patent & copyright office (Art. I, §8, cl. 8)
  • federal courts (Art. I, §8, cl. 9)
  • military and citizen militia (Art. I, §8, cls. 11-16)

Various other Articles, sections, and clauses list additional objects of Congress’ spending, such as payment of the salaries of persons on the civil list (Art. I, §6, cl.1; Art. II, §1, next to last clause; and Art. III, §1).

Do you get the idea?  The Constitution lists what Congress is permitted to spend money on. Its spending is limited to the enumerated powers, and the salaries of those on the civil list.  If you will go thru our Constitution and highlight every power delegated to Congress and the President, you will see ALL the objects on which Congress has constitutional authority to appropriate funds.  THAT is ALL – ALL – they may lawfully spend money on.

We have a debt of $17+ trillion (plus unfunded liabilities) because WE ignored our Constitution for 100 years; and Congress spent money on objects outside the scope of the enumerated powers.

This one page chart depicts the Constitution We established, and most of what Congress may lawfully spend money on.  Is it not a thing of beauty?  Do you want it back?  Then Restore it!

Understand this:  All versions of a BBA eliminate the enumerated powers limitations on the federal government.  Under all versions, the Constitution is “fundamentally changed” to permit the federal government to do anything they want and to spend money on anything they please.

Amendments are a tricky business.  And tricksters abound in our Land.

Endnotes:

 1 Compact for America is also trying to use the “compact of the states” provision & is calling for an Art. V convention.  Red Flag, Folks!  But for now, let’s look just at their dishonest BBA.

2 Congress always had authority to impeach and remove a President for usurpations of power – see this short Primer.

3 Section 5 also says Congress may reduce or eliminate existing income tax exemptions, deductions, or credits by a simple majority vote.

4 This paper lists all the powers delegated to Congress by our Constitution.  You can learn them!

Postscript added Feb. 13, 2014:

Nick Dranias and others at Compact for America are posting here & there insisting that their BBA does not  impose a new tax, because Congress already has authority to impose a sales tax or VAT tax.  They say Art. I, Sec. 8, cl. 1,  authorizes Congress to impose “imposts”, and that an “impost” is any kind of tax.

Rubbish!

We must go by the original intent of “impost”. Ten or so of The Federalist Papers discuss “imposts”, and they are a tax on imports. That is quite clear. It is easy to find these Papers. The edition of The Federalist I use has a search function: just type in imposts and the list of Papers will come right up and you can read them all.

 

Webster’s 1828 dictionary also defines “imposts” as a tax on imports: http://1828.mshaffer.com/d/word/impost

 

“1. Any tax or tribute imposed by authority; particularly, a duty or tax laid by government on goods imported, and paid or secured by the importer at the time of importation. Imposts are also called customs.”

So a national sales tax is most manifestly NOT an “impost”!  And yes, Dranias’ BBA imposes a new national sales or VAT tax.

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February 10, 2014 Posted by | Balanced Budget Amendment, Compact for America, Kevin Gutzman, Nick Dranias | , , , | 36 Comments

Propaganda And The Conspiracy against Our Constitution

By Publius Huldah

The “Convention of States” (COS) Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) page contains 989 words – none of them true – except for these which appear in the first paragraph:

“The federal government is spending this country into the ground … It’s time American citizens took a stand and made a legitimate effort to curb the power … of the federal government.”

In my last paper, I showed how our Constitution itemizes what Congress is authorized to spend money on; and that we have a $17 trillion debt because everyone ignores the limits the Constitution places on Congress’ spending powers.

To curb the federal government, We must do things we have neglected for over 100 years: Reclaim our role as “the natural guardians of the Constitution”; 1 learn our Founding Principles & Documents; enforce them with nullification and by rejecting candidates who don’t know them by heart; stop relying on politicians to handle things; 2 reclaim personal responsibility; and get ready for a rocky road ahead.

But the “convention of states” conspirators 3 say the only solution is a convention to “propose amendments” to the Constitution.  They tell lies about nullification – the one remedy our Framers actually advised when the feds usurp powers. They say our Constitution is the problem. They say it contains “loopholes and vague phraseology” which politicians exploit. They suggest the States are victims of federal tyranny; are the ones to “fix” our Constitution; and that the States call and control the convention.  They say it is impossible for the convention to force a new Constitution down our throats.  But I submit that is precisely what they intend to do.

Jordan Sillars, Communications Director for COS, let the cat out of the bag when he said:

“… 3. I think the majority of Americans are too lazy to elect honest politicians. But I think some men and women could be found who are morally and intellectually capable of re-writing the Constitution” [boldface mine].

Contrary to what the conspirators say, there is no way to stop the convention from “running away”: All the delegates need do is come up with a new Constitution. It can provide for any method of ratification they want.

That is what happened in 1787 when the Continental Congress called a convention “for the sole and express purpose of revising the Articles of Confederation”. 4 The delegates ignored their instructions and wrote an entirely new Constitution with its own new method of ratification.

The Conspirators’ Campaign of Propaganda against The People

The conspirators’ claims spit in the Face of Facts and Reality.  So how have they been able to convince people to believe their claims; and go along with their destructive scheme?

They are exploiting the ignorance and desperation of The People by manipulating them with propaganda. Their FAQ’s employ nine well known techniques of propaganda: 5

  • Assume the Major Premise
  • Appeal to Desperation
  • Claim there is a Panacea
  • Repetition for Emphasis
  • The Big Lie
  • Fabricated Legal Principles & Precedent  [“Imaginary Evidence”]
  • Oversimplify
  • Exploit Wishful Thinking
  • The Self-sell.

Assume the Major Premises

Throughout the FAQs, it is assumed that:

  1. The purpose of amendments is to control the federal government;
  2. Our Constitution is defective;
  3. That there is such a thing as a “convention of states” which States call and control;
  4. States will protect us from the federal government; and
  5. The federal government will obey amendments to the Constitution.

These are the five major assumptions upon which their scam is constructed. They don’t prove them – they know many will blindly accept them. Only thoughtful people examine assumptions.

But you can become a “thoughtful person” if you will start examining what you are told.

Their first major premise: The Truth is two (2) delegates at the Federal Convention of 1787 (Mason & Randolph) wanted States to be able to amend the Constitution without involvement of Congress. The conspirators’ crazy and dishonest claim that the purpose of amendments is to control the federal government is based on Mason’s & Randolph’s comments you can find here.  Theirs was the minority view; Art. V provides for Congress’ involvement in both methods of amendment; and Mason & Randolph objected so much to our Constitution they refused to sign it.

Our Framers at the Federal Convention of 1787 understood that the purpose of amendments is to remedy defects in the Constitution [slavery]; and that the novelty and difficulty of what they were doing would require periodic revision [the 11th, 12th, & 27th amendments].  Hamilton said in Federalist No. 85 (13th para) that useful amendments would address the “organization of the government, not … the mass of its powers”.  Madison said in Federalist No. 43 (at 8.) that “useful alterations will be suggested by experience.”

People are deceived by the conspirators’ first premise because they don’t understand that our Constitution created a federal government of strictly limited and defined – enumerated – powers. Everything the feds have authority to do is itemized in our Constitution.  Does our Constitution delegate to the feds power to ban incandescent light bulbs, determine portion sizes of school lunches, and force us into obamacare?  No! So what do you do when the feds usurp powers over such objects?  Amend the Constitution?  Really?  How would you amend the Constitution to fix such usurpations?  Make an Amendment saying the feds can’t regulate light bulbs?  And so on for every power they usurp?

It is crazy to say the purpose of amendments is to control the federal government. When the feds usurp powers not delegated, no amendment saying they can’t do what they did will restrain them. They violated the Constitution when they usurped the power in the first place!

Furthermore, the amendments they write don’t restrict the feds:  Michael Farris’ “parental rights amendment” delegates power over children to the federal and state governments, and empowers judges to determine the extent of that power! One of Randy Barnett’s amendments gives the feds lawful power over “harmful emissions” [EPA now exercises usurped powers], and power “to define and provide for punishment of offenses constituting acts of war or violent insurrection against the United States” [read that again!]. Mark Levin’s amendments also increase the powers of the feds by legalizing powers they have usurped. His “override” amendments remove the Constitution as the standard of what is lawful and what is not, and substitute majority vote. Yet the conspirators say such amendments would curb the federal government!

But we must not be distracted by proposed amendments. Their amendments are most likely a pretext to get a “convention” so they can carry out their plot to replace our Constitution.

Their second major premise: Our Constitution is the cause of our problems.

Except for some of the existing Amendments Americans already got manipulated into supporting, what is wrong with our Constitution?  For the most part, it is easy to understand. For phrases federal judges have perverted – such as the “interstate commerce”, “general welfare”, & “necessary and proper” clauses, a quick look into The Federalist Papers usually reveals the original intent.  I illustrate that here and in many other papers.

This one page chart illustrates the structure of our federal system and the enumerated powers delegated to the federal government. What needs “fixing”?  We are in our present mess because for 100 years, we elected & re-elected politicians to federal and state office who ignore it.

All our Constitution wants is (1) to be learned & obeyed; and (2) to have repealed some of the existing Amendments. Repeal those the same way we repealed the 18th Amendment. We don’t need a “convention” for that. Instead of sending ignorant phonies to Congress; send people who know the Constitution [make them pass tests before you support them] and commit to repealing the 17th Amendment and other ill-considered Amendments.

Their third major premise: That there is such a thing as a “convention of states”: The FAQs say “Article V, Section 2 of the Constitution” gives state legislatures the power to call a convention; that Federalist No. 85 says Congress has “no control over the delegates”; that “Virginia called the Philadelphia Convention of 1787”; and that “Basic common sense” and “Agency law 101” says “Each state chooses its own delegates”.

Those claims are truly bizarre.

Read Art. V:  There is no “Section 2”.  Article V says Congress calls the convention – not state legislatures.  All state legislatures can do is apply to Congress for Congress to call it.

Federalist No. 85 says Congress must call a convention when two-thirds of the States apply for it. Hamilton does not say Congress has “no control over the delegates”! 6

Virginia did not “call” the Philadelphia Convention of 1787!  The Continental Congress did.  Their Resolution calling the 1787 convention, pursuant to Art. 13 of The Articles of Confederation, is quoted at endnote 4.  And when the Continental Congress called the 1787 convention, they specifically provided that delegates would be appointed by the States. 4

But Art. I, Sec. 8, last clause, of our Constitution delegates to Congress power to make all laws necessary and proper to carry out the powers vested in it by Art. V.  So Congress has the power to organize the convention, appoint the chairman and delegates, etc.  The Mason & Randolph view was rejected. And the clear words of our Constitution cannot be changed by some ignorant person’s subjective conceptions of “common sense” and “Agency law 101”!

Their fourth major premise: That States are victims of federal tyranny and will rein in the federal government given the opportunity at a convention.

But look at what States have done. They have acquiesced in federal usurpations in exchange for federal funds. The States adopted unconstitutional federal education schemes such as “race to the top” and common core for the federal grant money.

DHS is becoming America’s equivalent of the East German STASI and Soviet KGB. With the connivance of State governments, DHS is taking over local & State law enforcement. And read about the fusion centers in every State – the States acquiesced!

John Barnes shows that State governments no longer focus on managing “a relatively self-contained polis”, but on “siphoning as much money as possible from the federal government”; and that “state government is becoming a mere pass-through for federal funds and an apparatus of federal policy.”  Barnes shows us how State governments all over the Country are bloated with bureaucrats whose job is to “maximize federal funding”.

Google “maximize federal funding” – you will see.  No rational person can believe that the politicians in the States – who are the ones who sold us to the feds in the first place – are the ones to rescue us from the feds.  If the States wanted to, they could rein in the feds right now by using the remedy our Framers really did advise: Nullification.

Their fifth major premise: That the federal government will obey amendments.

But think! The feds continually violate the Constitution we have.  They exercise thousands of usurped powers.

The conspirators insist the feds would obey future amendments because the feds haven’t violated recent amendments, such as women’s suffrage.  Well, of course not!  Of the 15 amendments ratified since the 12th in 1804; 10 increased the powers of the feds (13th, 14th, 15th, 16th, 17th, 18th, 19th, 23rd, 24th, 26th); 7 and 4 were “housekeeping” amendments (20th, 22nd, 25th, 27th).

Do you see?

Appeal to Desperation

The gist of this propaganda technique is to argue that we must do something – we can’t do nothing – so let’s do what I propose.  And we better do it “before it is too late”.

Many Americans are in a panic over the rapidity with which Obama – with the connivance of the Republican and Democrat parties and the State governments – is setting up a national totalitarian police state.

But we mustn’t allow the conspirators to exploit our desperation so as to induce us into surrendering our Constitution. All Americans who have fallen for the conspirators’ scam have been manipulated by THIS technique.

We have effective options.  We have failed to gain the knowledge which would enable us to be the Sovereigns we are supposed to be.  We have contented ourselves with blind faith in talk show hosts, politicians, and other charlatans. We are what needs fixing.

Claim there is a Panacea

With this, you claim that what you are offering is a magical cure for all the problems.

The conspirators say all we have to do to fix our problems is have a “convention of states”. They say they will propose amendments to the Constitution, and the federal government will be “fixed”.  They ignore the facts that everyone has ignored the Constitution we have; that it was the States who sold us out in the first place; and that We The People kept reelecting ignorant & glib politicians who violate the Constitution to state & federal office.

There is no such thing as a panacea. We have a long road ahead of us to fix the problems We caused by our own folly, ignorance, and laziness.

Repetition for Emphasis

With this, you drive home a few simple and unproven points by repeating them over and over until the public believes them.

The five major premises listed above are repeated over & over & over & over & over.  People believe them because they have been programed to believe them.   

Orange quotes Adolf Hitler:

“It [propaganda] must repeat those points over and over again until the public believes it. The principles behind propaganda are the same principles of mind control, hypnotic suggestion, and mental programming: distraction and repetition. With propaganda, distraction draws attention away from information that is true and directs attention to information that is false. Repetition of the false information imbeds it in your subconscious mind so that your acceptance of its truth becomes a conditioned response. You accept this information as true without thinking whenever it is presented to you again.”

This is why most of mankind has lived under tyranny.  People will believe anything if they hear it enough.  Folks!  You better start facing Reality and taking charge of what you believe.

The Big Lie

The gist of this is to:

 “…keep repeating the same lie[s] over and over, in spite of all arguments and evidence to the contrary, until people believe it.  Massive repetition is essential.”

It has already been proved by this and other writers that everything the conspirators say about nullification and a “convention” is false. But they keep repeating it.  Why?  Because massive repetition of lies will induce people to believe them.

Fabricated Legal Principles & Precedent [“Imaginary Evidence”]

The FAQs make various assertions about how this “convention of states” would operate, such as:

  • “The applications must request a convention of states for the same subject matter” or “same issue”;
  • “States are free to develop their own selection process for choosing their delegates…  each state has one vote at the convention.”

The FAQs say this reflects “widely accepted” “procedures and rules” Rob Natelson found during his “extensive research”, which were followed in the “interstate conventions” which “were common” during “the Founding Era”.

Folks! If these customs existed and established binding precedent on the Congress we created when we ratified our Constitution, why did James Madison not know about them?  During the Federal Convention of 1787, Madison said, respecting Article V:

September 10, 1787: Mr. Madison remarked on the vagueness of the terms, “call a Convention for the purpose”, as sufficient reason for reconsidering the article.  “How was a Convention to be formed? – by what rule decide? – what the force of its acts?”

September 15, 1787: Mr. Madison did not see why Congress would not be as much bound to propose amendments applied for by two-thirds of the States, as to call a Convention on the like application.  He saw no objection, however, against providing for a Convention for the purpose of amendments, except only that difficulties might arise as to the form, the quorum, &c., which in constitutional regulations ought to be as much as possible avoided.

Do you see?  And don’t forget: Article V says Congress calls the convention; and Art. I, Sec. 8, last clause, delegates to Congress power to make laws needed to execute the powers vested in it by Article V. This constitutional provision supersedes any “customs” to the contrary.

Oversimplify

 The gist of this technique is to:

“Reduce the issue to a few simple sentences that any blithering idiot can understand. Leave out all the complicated facts and confounding factors. Reduce the debate to just a few simple-minded sentences and slogans. Reduce complex multi-faceted issues to simplistic statements that can be expressed in a short sound bite.”

Aren’t the FAQs a few simple concepts any blithering idiot can understand?

It is this and other writers who point out the “complicated facts”.  Are we too stupid to be free?

Exploit Wishful Thinking

With this technique, you tell people what they want to hear, rather than the unpleasant truths.

The conspirators are offering an easy way out which satisfies a deep yearning: to feel good. We don’t have to accept responsibility for our own failures to become a “natural guardian of the Constitution”; we are encouraged to blame shift and see the Constitution as the cause of our problems; and we don’t have to trouble ourselves to actually learn our Founding Principles & Documents.  All we have to do is join the conspirators.  And then, everything will be wonderful.

The Self-sell

This technique gets people to convince themselves of your ideas by asking for their help in promoting your ideas. “They will sell themselves on the idea as they try to sell it to others.”

Orange gives this example of the Self-sell:  In “Cold Turkey”, Dick Van Dyke plays a preacher who wants everyone in his town to quit smoking.  He got the local Neo-Nazis to quit by enlisting them as “smoking-ban enforcers”.

The conspirators want to build a “grassroots operation” of volunteers to sell their scheme to State legislators [the ones who already sold us to the feds for federal funds.] And we have seen these volunteers’ mindless comments on the internet as they regurgitate the talking points in the FAQs – they sell themselves as they try to sell to others. 8

Conclusion

You better wise up now. Study this chart. Flesh it out with your readings of our Declaration of Independence and Constitution.  Have study groups. What Hamilton asked you to be is not difficult.

Endnotes:

1 Our Framers never saw courts as the final authority.  See James Madison Rebukes Nullification Deniers.  Hamilton expected us to be “a people enlightened enough to distinguish between a legal exercise and an illegal usurpation of authority” (Federalist No. 16, next to last para).

2 Politicians are as ignorant as those who elect them. But we want a savior who will rescue us without any effort on our part. So we look to politicians to save us. They always betray us; and we are presented with still another phony who says what we want to hear, whom we support, and who betrays us. This happens because we don’t know our Constitution, and thus can’t evaluate the politicians.  If WE knew our Constitution, those smooth-talking ignoramuses wouldn’t have a chance of getting elected. You would see right through them.

3 Progressives & phony “conservatives” have worked hand in hand for many years to replace our Constitution. See Richard D. Fry, “Convention of States”: The Wrong Solution to the Wrong Problem.

4 The conspirators tell the brazen lie that the convention “cannot throw out the Constitution because it derives its authority from the Constitution.”  Rubbish!  Pursuant to Article XIII of The Articles of Confederation, the Continental Congress resolved on February 21, 1787 (p 71-74):

“Resolved that in the opinion of Congress it is expedient that on the second Monday in May next a Convention of delegates who shall have been appointed by the several states be held at Philadelphia for the sole and express purpose of revising the Articles of Confederation and reporting to Congress and the several legislatures such alterations and provisions therein as shall when agreed to in Congress and confirmed by the states render the federal constitution adequate to the exigencies of Government & the preservation of the Union.” [emphasis mine]

The delegates ignored these limitations and wrote a new Constitution with a new method of ratification.  It is impossible to stop this from happening at another convention. And George Washington, James Madison, Ben Franklin, and Alexander Hamilton won’t be there.

The conspirators also say a “Constitutional Convention” is safe because no amendment will be passed which is not ratified by ¾ of the States. This is deceptive because the concern is about a runaway convention & a new Constitution – not amendments. Since a new Constitution can have any method of ratification the delegates want, it can be forced on us.

5 See Propaganda and Debating Techniques by A. Orange. Orange is a “librul”, and on a vendetta against AA.  But he understands how scoundrels use propaganda to deceive the unthinking.  See how Adolf Hitler used these same techniques to manipulate the German People.

6 I addressed this same lie in “Mark Levin Refuted: Keep the Feds in Check with Nullification, not Amendments!” under the subheading, “What Levin Claims Article V Says”.  Congress’ lack of discretion is limited to the issue of “to call or not to call” a convention once the requisite number of States has applied for it.  After Congress “calls” the convention, Art. I, Sec. 8, last clause kicks in to empower Congress to make all laws necessary to carry out the call.

7 The result of the voting amendments (15th, 19th, 24th, 26th)was to transfer the power of determining voter qualifications from the States (Art. I, Sec. 2, cl.1) to the federal government.

It was necessary to amend the Constitution to remedy the defects which permitted slavery; but the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments delegated powers over the States to the federal government.  It would have been better to merely repeal the provisions at Art. I, Sec. 2, cl.3 which provided for a partial counting of slaves; and Art. IV, Sec. 2, cl. 3 which permitted Congress to make laws against fugitive slaves.  And if the States had been wise instead of foolish, they would have banned slavery and extended citizenship & civil rights to freed slaves on their own, and provided the education to help them make the transition from slave to citizen.  Stupidity and wickedness are not cheap, Folks.  And Amendments are a very tricky business.

8 There is nothing wrong with asking others to help promote ideas – when the ideas are True and Good.  But when the ideas are destructive and false, the self-sell is immoral manipulation. PH

January 28, 2014

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January 28, 2014 Posted by | Amendments to the Constitution, Article V, Article V Convention, constitutional convention, Convention of States project, Federal Convention of 1787, Jordan Sillars, Michael Farris, Necessary and Proper clause, re-writing the Constitution | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 19 Comments

The “Convention of States” Scam, the War over the Constitution, and how the States Sold the Reserved Powers to the Feds.

By Publius Huldah

Our Constitution is a glorious document. This one page chart depicts the Structure of the federal government we created when we ratified our Constitution; and lists the “limited & enumerated powers” we delegated to the federal government over the Country at Large.

In a nutshell, our Constitution authorizes the federal government to handle the following objects for the Country at Large:

  • Military defense, international commerce & relations;
  • Control immigration & naturalization of new citizens;
  • Domestically, to create a uniform commercial system:  weights & measures, patents & copyrights, money based on gold & silver, bankruptcy laws, mail delivery & some road building; and
  • With some of the amendments, secure certain civil rights.

Basically, that’s it.  As stated in the 10th Amendment, all others powers are reserved by the States or The People.

But for 100 years, almost everyone in our Country has ignored our Constitution.  Thus, instead of restricting spending to the enumerated objects of its powers, the people WE send to Congress spend money on what anybody wants – and so gave us a debt of $17 trillion.  Instead of restricting lawmaking to the enumerated objects of its powers, the people WE send to Congress make laws on whatever they like. The President WE elected tramples all over the Constitution; and due to the connivance, cowardice, and ignorance of Congress, the supreme Court, State governments, and the American People, is seizing totalitarian power.

WE are in terrible trouble.

And it is the phony right wing which is seducing the American People into taking the final jump off the cliff.

Michael Farris, head of the Convention of States 1 project, begins his video with this spiel:

“We all know that our government is way off track. The debt is astronomical and is going to cripple not only our own freedom and our own economy, but our children and our grandchildren are going to be effectively slaves, paying for all the things that we’re spending money on today.”

That part of his video is true.

But the purpose of their spiels is to make you believe they are on your side.  You must look behind the spiels and think carefully about what they are proposing as “solutions”.  Much is at stake:

THIS IS THE WAR over our Constitution and Country.  And here are the two sides:

Learn & Enforce our Existing Constitution!

One side proposes that we learn & enforce our existing Constitution of limited & enumerated powers.  We show that our Framers advised us to enforce our Constitution by (1) electing better representatives to annul the acts of the usurpers, 2 or by (2) nullification of unconstitutional acts.

To illustrate: What would our Country’s financial condition be if WE THE PEOPLE had enforced the enumerated powers on Congress?

It is the enumerated powers which list the objects on which Congress may appropriate funds:

  • immigration office (Art. I, §8, cl.4)
  • mint (Art. I, §8, cl. 5)
  • Attorney General (Art. I, §8, cl. 6)
  • post offices & post roads (Art. I, §8, cl. 7)
  • patent & copyright office (Art. I, §8, cl. 8)
  • federal courts (Art. I, §8, cl. 9)
  • military (Art. I, §8, cls. 11-16)
  • the civil list (Art. I, §6, cl.1)
  • [and other objects listed in various other articles, sections, &clauses]

Do you get the idea?  The Constitution itemizes what Congress is permitted to spend money on. See also the two geographical areas over which Congress was delegated “general legislative powers”: Art. I, §8, next to last clause, & Art. IV, §3, cl. 2.

The reason we have a debt of $17 trillion is because everyone ignored the Constitution; so Congress spent money on objects outside the scope of its enumerated powers.

Amend Away our Existing Constitution?

But the Randy Barnett 3/ Rob Natelson/ Michael Farris/ Mark Levin camp want a “convention” so they can gut our existing Constitution by amending out the limited & enumerated powers with new amendments which grant general powers to the federal government; or they seek to re-write the Constitution altogether. 

Here are illustrations of how the limited & enumerated powers can be amended out of our Constitution:

It has already been shown how the so-called balanced budget amendment would transform our Constitution from one of enumerated spending powers to one of general spending powers, where spending would be limited only by the amount of revenue the federal government generates or a certain percentage of the GDP. 4 But under our existing Constitution, the federal government’s expenditures are limited by the constitutional grants of authority – the enumerated powers.  The problem is everyone ignores the enumerated powers – they never even bothered to learn what they are!

Here is another illustration:  Michael Farris, the grand master of The Spiel, has managed to convince many parents that the only way to protect their parental rights is an amendment to the Constitution which delegates to the federal and State governments constitutional power over their children!

And Mark Levin’s suggested amendments would gut our Constitution.  Most increase the powers of the federal government by making constitutional what is now unconstitutional because it is not an enumerated power.  The amendments pertaining to “overrides” undermine the Constitution as the objective standard of what is lawful and what is not – and substitute majority vote therefor.  These “overrides” would erase the Constitution and replace it with majority (mob) rule.

Or is “re-writing the Constitution” their actual goal?

Farris says in the video:

“…sometimes what you need is not a change of personnel, you need a change of structure. The Founders understood the importance of structure…”

Does that give you cold chills?

How does Farris seek to change the structure?

Please – all of you – look at this one page chart which depicts The Structure of the federal government our Framers gave us:  What needs changing?  Isn’t enforcement what we need?

Jordan Sillars, Communications Director for Farris’ Convention of States Project, let the cat out of the bag:

On September 15, 2013, a discussion on my Face Book page was started about Mark Levin’s clamoring for a “convention of states”.

On or before September 19, Jordon Sillars posted a comment wherein he said:

“… 3. I think the majority of Americans are too lazy to elect honest politicians. But I think some men and women could be found who are morally and intellectually capable of re-writing the Constitution…” [boldface mine].

On September 19 at 1:20 p.m., I responded:

“So, this really is about “re-writing the Constitution”, isn’t it?

And could you name these individuals who are “morally and intellectually capable of re-writing the Constitution”?”

Sillars thereafter deleted his comments, but not before I obtained a screen shot of his quoted comment which you can see here.

Why did he delete his comments?

Now let’s look more at what Farris says in his video:

The False Statements & Silly Arguments of the Proponents of a “convention of States”

1.  After his introduction about the $17 trillion debt, Farris goes on to say:

The States have the power under Article V to call a convention of the States for the purpose of proposing amendments to the Constitution…”

His statement is false.

The Truth is the States have no authority to call the convention.  That power is delegated to Congress.  Article V says:

The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose Amendments to this Constitution, or, on the Application of the Legislatures of two thirds of the several States, shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments…” [emphasis mine]

Congress calls it.  Not the States.

Furthermore, Dr. Edwin Vieira has pointed out:

 ‘The language “shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments” sets out a constitution duty in Congress. It embraces a constitutional power as well. That brings into play Article I, Section 8, Clause 18, which delegates to Congress the power “[t]o make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers [that is, in Article I, Section 8, Clauses 1 through 17], and all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any Department or Officer thereof”. The power to “call a Convention for proposing Amendments” is one of those “all other Powers”. Therefore, pursuant to that power, Congress may enact whatever “Law[ ] which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the * * * Power [to call a Convention]’.

So!  Since Article V vests in Congress the power to call the convention; and since Article I, §8, last clause, vests in Congress the power to make all laws necessary & proper to execute its delegated powers; 5 Congress would be  within its constitutional authority to organize the Convention anyway it wants, and to appoint whomsoever it wishes as delegates. 6

Now look at this:  The chart on Article V shows that James Madison, Father of our Constitution, remarked on the vagueness of the term, “call a Convention for the purpose”:

How was a Convention to be formed? – by what rule decide? – what the force of its acts?” (Sep. 10); and “difficulties might arise as to the form, the quorum, &c., which in constitutional regulations ought to be as much as possible avoided” (Sep. 15, 1787).

Phyllis Schlafly also raised Twenty Questions about a Constitutional Convention.

Congress, pursuant to Article V and Article I, §8, last clause, has the constitutional power to answer all these questions by means of a law.

Folks!  The Farris/Natelson/ Levin camp is not telling you the truth when they say the States decide these issues!

2. Farris then says in his video:

“…in Article V of the Constitution [the Founding Fathers] gave us the solution…”

“…they gave the power to the States to create a new set of rules when the federal government overstepped its boundaries. We can recalibrate the rules to take power away from Washington D.C. and give it back to the people and to the States.”

His statements are both false and silly.

Here is the false part of what he said:

It was not the consensus at the Federal Convention of 1787 that the purpose of Article V was so States could make amendments to the Constitution in order to take power away from a federal government which had usurped power by violating the Constitution.

This chart shows what happened at the Federal Convention of 1787 re development of Article V.

Two delegates (Randolph & Mason, who didn’t sign the Constitution) supported the notion that amendments might be used if the national government should become oppressive.  And they didn’t want Congress to have any power over amendment procedures. Their view was the minority view.

Other delegates (Gov. Morris, Hamilton & Madison) thought Congress ought to be able to propose amendments.  One delegate (Mr. Gerry) worried about States obtaining a convention and binding the Union to innovations which subverted State Constitutions.  Hamilton spoke of amendments to correct defects which would probably appear in the Constitution.

So the final version of Article V provides two methods of proposing amendments to the Constitution.  Congress either:

  • Proposes the amendments; or
  • “Calls” a convention when the Legislatures of 2/3 of the States apply for it.  [Now see Art. I, §8, last clause.]

Now for the silly parts of what Farris said (and there are two silly parts):

3.  Farris tells us the solution to a federal government which “overstep[s] its boundaries” [violates the Constitution] is to amend the Constitution.

He proposes “to take power away from Washington D.C.” [power the federal government has usurped] by “recalibrate[ing] the rules”.

In other words, the solution to a federal government which violates the Constitution is to amend the Constitution.

Do you see how silly this is?

4.  Farris and his camp also imply that the States are victims of federal tyranny, and are the virtuous & wise ones who can fix our Country if they can just get a convention to propose amendments.

But the States are the ones who sold you out to the federal government in the first place!  I’ll show you:

The 10th Amendment says:

“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”.

What happened to these reserved powers?

The States sold them to the federal government.

Let’s use education as an illustration of how the States sold to the federal government your reserved power to educate your own children in the way you see fit.

The Creator God who, as recognized by our Declaration of Independence, endowed us with unalienable rights; assigned to parents the responsibility to provide for the education & moral instruction of their children:  Proverbs 1:8-9, 6:20-21, 13:1, 22:6 & 23:19-22; Genesis 18:19; Deuteronomy 4:9-10 & 6:1-7; Ephesians 6:1-4; 2 Timothy 1:5  & 3:15-17.

Is “education” one of the enumerated powers delegated to the federal government for the Country at large?  No.  So the federal government has no constitutional authority to get involved.  Accordingly, all acts of Congress pertaining to education for the Country at Large, the federal Department of Education, and all their rules & programs are unconstitutional as outside the scope of powers delegated to the federal government.

So why does the federal government dictate all things respecting education?

Because your States sold your God-given responsibility to educate your own children – and your reserved power to do so - to the federal government.  This has been going on for a long time; but most recently your State sold you out for federal grants with the federal government’s “race to the top” and “common core” schemes. 7

You have to be ignorant, unthinking, & gullible – a greenhorn – to believe that The States are the men in the white hats who can fix all this with a convention to propose amendments.

Conclusion

The federal government is not the problem – it is the result of our own ignorance, pride and folly.

WE THE PEOPLE, who are “the natural guardians of the Constitution” (Federalist No. 16, next to last para) didn’t trouble ourselves to learn the enumerated powers of Congress and the President.  Do you know them?

I ask my Readers who have been supporting the “convention of States” scheme:  Have you studied our Founding Principles set forth in The Declaration of Independence? Have you studied the text of the Constitution so that you know what it says?

If not, how are you qualified to know how to “fix” a Constitution you never learned?

Are you willing to stake your lives & liberties, and those of your progeny, on whether those in the Barnett/Natelson/Farris/ Levin camp (1) know what they are talking about, and (2) are telling the truth?

Why? Because you like them?  Because they provide a scapegoat which permits you to blame-shift?  And you think you can “get even”?

Wise voices in this Country are warning you about the scam.  Foremost among them is Phyllis Schlafly, who has been warning of this danger for decades. Yet, such is the ignorant conceit of the greenhorns that they sneer at those who are warning them.

I trust you now see the connection between the moral corruption of a People and tyranny.

Endnotes:

1 Use your own head!  Do not be manipulated by other peoples’ choice of words. Rob Natelson formerly referred to what he wants as a “constitutional convention”.  Now, he calls it a “Convention of the States” – that is the term his cohorts & minions now use.  Why did they change what they called it?

2 But our elections are no longer honest. The States took federal grant money to buy voting machines which can be rigged.

3 Randy Barnett’s “Bill of Federalism” is ten proposed amendments which would transform our Constitution from one of enumerated powers to one of general & unlimited powers.  Mark Levin’s proposed amendments are similar to Barnett’s.

4 The GDP is computed by an agency in the Executive Branch. So under the BBA, spending would be limited by numbers under the control of the federal government:  By how much they tax you; or by a number (GDP) the Executive Branch computes. You think that is a fine idea?

5 The Federalist Papers tell us what the “necessary & proper” clause (Art. I, §8, last clause) means:  The clause delegates to Congress power to pass all laws necessary & proper to execute its declared powers (Federalist No. 29, 4th para); a power to do something must be a power to pass all laws necessary & proper for the execution of that power (Federalist No. 33, 4th  para); “the constitutional operation of the intended government would be precisely the same if [this clause] were entirely obliterated as if [it] were repeated in every article” (Federalist No. 33, 2nd para); and thus the clause is “perfectly harmless”, a tautology or redundancy. (Federalist No. 33, 4th para).  See also Federalist No. 44, 10th -17th paras.  In other words, the clause permits the execution of powers already declared and granted.

Do not be misled by Rob Natelson’s post on the “necessary & proper” clause!  Why did Natelson ignore what The Federalist Papers say about this clause?  Why did he fabricate the song & dance set forth in his post?

6 Think this through also: Even if Congress, as a matter of grace, permitted the States to appoint delegates, how would delegates from your State be chosen? Who controls your State? Would the powers in your State choose you?  Or do you believe Michael Farris would choose the leaders?

7 This happened in your State because The People in your State elected to State government people who sold you out.  See this website on federal grants:  http://www.ffis.org/database   You think your State Legislators, who have been gobbling up all the federal grant money they can get, will fix our Country at a “convention” to propose amendments? PH.

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December 18, 2013 Posted by | 10th Amendment, Amendments to the Constitution, Amendments: Parental Rights Amendment, Article V, Article V Convention, constitutional convention, Convention of States project, Edwin Vieira, Federal Convention of 1787, Jordan Sillars, Mark Levin, Michael Farris, Necessary and Proper clause, Phony right wing, Phyllis Schlafly, re-writing the Constitution, Retained Powers, States Retained Powers, Tenth Amendment, The Liberty Amendments | , , , , , , , , | 45 Comments

Mark Levin Refuted: Keep the Feds in Check with Nullification, not Amendments!

By Publius Huldah

What Mark Levin says in “The Liberty Amendments” in support of an Article V convention is not true.1

On one side of this controversy are those who want to restore our Constitution by requiring federal and State officials to obey the Constitution we have; or by electing ones who will.  We show that the Oath of Office at Art. VI, last clause, requires federal 2 and state officials to support the Constitution.  This requires them to refuse to submit to – to nullify – acts of the federal government which violate the Constitution.  This is how they “support” the Constitution!

We note that the Oath of Office requires obedience to the Constitution alone.  The Oath does not require obedience to persons, to any agency of the federal government, or to any federal court.

We understand that resistance to tyranny is a natural right – and it is a duty.

We have read original writings of our Framers and know what our Framers actually told the States to do when the federal government violates the Constitution: Nullification of the unlawful act is among the first of the recommended remediesnot one of which is “amendment of the Constitution”.

It is already proved in James Madison Rebukes Nullification Deniers, that our Framers endorsed nullification by States of unconstitutional acts of the federal government.  Thomas Jefferson and James Madison summed it up as follows:

“…when powers are assumed which have not been delegated, a nullification of the act4 is “the natural right, which all admit to be a remedy against insupportable oppression…” 5

The claims of the nullification deniers have been proven to be false.  To persist in those claims – or to do as Levin seems to do and ignore the remedy of nullification – is intellectually and morally indefensible.  So why don’t they apologize to the public and recant their errors?

Instead, they continue to tell us that what we need is a “convention of the States” (which Levin and his mentors insist is provided by Article V of the Constitution) to propose amendments to the Constitution, and that this is the only way out.

Yes, they tell us, the only way to deal with a federal government which consistently ignores and tramples over the Constitution is …. to amend the Constitution!

Do you see how silly that is?

 Levin’s Amendments

Levin starts his book by saying how bad things are and how the federal government has trampled and mangled the Constitution.  Those pages are true.  And they serve the purpose of making readers believe that Levin is “on our side”.  And because of that, many are induced to lay aside their critical thinking skills and accept on trust what Levin tells them. That is a deadly mistake.

Levin’s amendments actually gut our Constitution.  Most increase the powers of the federal government by making lawful what is now unconstitutional because it is not an “enumerated power”. Others put a band-aid on a problem without solving the problem. The amendments pertaining to “overrides” undermine the Constitution as the Objective Standard of what is lawful and what is not – and substitute majority vote therefor. 6

A Defective Constitution? Or a Disobedient Federal Government?

We must distinguish between defects within a Constitution, and a government’s refusal to obey the Constitution to which it is subject.  These are different problems calling for different remedies.

There were defects in the Constitution produced by the Federal Convention of 1787, such as provisions permitting slavery.  Provision for amendment must be made to repair such defects. 7

But our problem now is a disobedient federal government.  That calls for different remedies – and our Framers spelled them out. 3

It is idiotic to assert that you can rein in a federal government which ignores the Constitution by amending the Constitution!  Yet, that is “The Levin Plan”.

Now let us read Article V:

What Article V Really Says

The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose Amendments to this Constitution, or, on the Application of the Legislatures of two thirds of the several States, shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments, which, in either Case, shall be valid to all Intents and Purposes, as Part of this Constitution, when ratified by the Legislatures of three fourths of the several States, or by Conventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other Mode of Ratification may be proposed by the Congress…”  [boldface mine]

Note that Congress “calls” the ConventionThe States don’t “call” it – all they can do is apply to Congress for Congress to call it.

There are many questions about Article V conventions; and James Madison raised them on two occasions at the Federal Convention of 1787: 8

  • On September 10, Madison remarked on the vagueness of the term, “call a Convention for the purpose”:  How was a Convention to be formed?  By what rule decide?  What the force of its acts?
  • On September 15, Madison commented on this again, and said that difficulties might arise as to the form, the quorum, etc., which in constitutional regulations ought to be avoided when possible.

Mr. Madison saw that these questions are not addressed by Article V.  Eagle Forum has also raised this issue in Twenty Questions about a constitutional convention.

But since Congress “calls” it, Congress has the power to appoint whomsoever they will as delegates;9  and nothing in the Constitution says they can’t do this.

Now note that Art. V provides for two conventions:

  • The first is the one called by Congress to propose amendments.
  • After amendments are proposed, Art. V empowers Congress to select the mode of ratification: Shall the State Legislatures be the body to ratify or reject?  Or shall each State convene a convention for the purposes or ratifying or rejecting the proposed amendments?

The only convention Art. V authorizes States to convene is one within their respective borders to ratify or reject an amendment proposed by Congress or by the convention Congress called.

What Levin Claims Article V Says

As you see, Art. V makes no provision for a “state convention process” where the States control the convention.

Yet Levin makes the bizarre claims (p 16-17) that Art. V authorizes this “state convention process”; and that the convention called by Congress pursuant to Art. V is really:

  • A “creature …of the state legislatures”;
  • That during ratification of our Constitution, the Founders always talked about conventions for proposing amendments as representing the States; and
  • That the state legislatures determine the method for selection of their delegates; and the subject matter of the convention.

Does Levin cite any authority for these claims?  Words of our Framers, perhaps?

No!  He cites an article written by former law professor, Robert G. Natelson, who Levin says is an “expert” on this “state convention process” (p16, notes 28 & 29).

Here is the article by Natelson Levin cites as “authority” for his claims.  Note that:

  • Natelson announces that he will no longer call what he wants a “constitutional convention”.  Henceforth, he will call it a “convention for proposing amendments”, an “Article V Convention”, an “amendments convention” or a “convention of the states”. 10
  • Natelson doesn’t cite any authority from our Framers for the claims Levin regurgitates in his book.  Instead, Natelson cites other law review articles; and
  • Natelson claims it was “custom” at the time of our Founding for States to have all these powers in conventions.

Custom?

Natelson’s article is no authority at all.  And even if he had proven that the “custom” at the time of our Framing was for States to have all these powers in conventions [someone really should have told James Madison about this “custom”]; what is there to make the Congress of today follow this 18th century  “custom” when Congress “calls” the convention under Art. V?

Levin also says he knows Congress’ role in the “state application process” is minimal and ministerial because:

  • The Framers and ratifiers adopted this “state convention process” for the purpose of establishing an alternative to the congressionally initiated amendment process; and
  • Alexander Hamilton said so in Federalist Paper No. 85.

Here, Levin commits the logical fallacy of “circular reasoning”:  We know, Levin argues, that Congress’ role in the state application process is “minimal and ministerial” because the Framers adopted this as an alternative to the method where Congress proposes the amendments directly.  Do you see?

Levin next claims that in Federalist No. 85, Hamilton said, respecting an Art. V convention, that Congress has “no option”, “will be obliged”, and that “nothing in this particular is left to the discretion of that body” (p 16-17).

Levin misrepresents what Hamilton says.  In Federalist No. 85, Hamilton merely says that Congress must call a convention when two-thirds of the States apply for it:

 “… By the fifth article of the plan, the Congress will be obliged … on the application of the legislatures of two thirds of the States … to call a convention for proposing amendments … The words of this article are peremptory. The Congress “shall call a convention.” Nothing in this particular is left to the discretion of that body. …”

Levin wrongly extends Congress’ lack of discretion on the issue of “to call or not to call” to what follows the “call”:  How the convention is to be formed, the appointment of delegates, the other  questions raised by Madison on September 10 & 15, 1787, and Eagle Forum’s Twenty Questions.

I have never seen any of the Framers say that Congress has no power over what follows Congress’ “call”; and Levin doesn’t produce evidence that any of them ever did.

Levin misrepresents what happened at the Federal Convention of 1787.

This 4 page chart lays out what really happened at that Convention respecting Article V.

To introduce his discussion of that Convention, Levin makes the following fanciful claims:

“The Constitution itself provides the means for restoring self-government and averting societal catastrophe (or, in the case of societal collapse, resurrecting the civil society) in Article V.” (p 12)

“The fact is that Article V expressly grants state legislatures significant authority to rebalance the constitutional structure for the purpose of restoring our founding principles should the federal government shed its limitations, abandon its original purpose, and grow too powerful…” (p12-13)

Article V says no such thing!  Read it and see.

Levin then quotes Edmund Randolph & George Mason, delegates to the Convention, as support for his claims respecting the purpose of Art. V.

But Randolph & Mason wanted a method of amendment Congress had nothing to do with. This was an issue at the Convention; Randolph & Mason held the minority view.

The majority view – the one reflected in the ratified version of Article V – involves Congress in both methods of amendment.  Congress either:

  •   Proposes the amendments; or
  •  “Calls” a convention when the Legislatures of 2/3 of the States apply for it.

Our Framers’ Concerns about “Conventions”

Now let us examine the “convention for proposing amendments” which Congress calls pursuant to Art. V; the “runaway” the Federal Convention of 1787 turned into, and “general conventions”.

We saw that James Madison raised concerns on September 10 & 15, 1787, about Art. V conventions called by Congress, because of questions respecting how was a Convention to be formed, by what rule, & the procedures of such conventions.

Yet Levin claims that in Federalist No. 43, Madison shows he considered an Art. V convention as prudent a method of amendment as having Congress propose the amendments (p 15).

Madison does not say that in Federalist No. 43! 11

Second, Levin’s claim is contradicted by Madison’s words in his letter of November 2, 1788 to G. L. Turberville on the same subject.

In his letter to Turberville, Madison speaks, with reference to modes of originating amendments, of both a “general convention” and an “Article V Convention”, on the one hand; and, on the other hand, “the origination of amendments in Congress”.

Madison advises that amendments be originated in Congress – not in an Art. V Convention, for the various reasons set forth in his letter; and that:

“2. A [“general”] Convention cannot be called without the unanimous consent of the parties who are to be bound by it, if first principles are to be recurred to; or without the previous application of ⅔ of the State legislatures, if the forms of the Constitution [Art. V] are to be pursued. The difficulties in either of these cases must evidently be much greater than will attend the origination of amendments in Congress, which may be done at the instance of a single State Legislature, or even without a single instruction on the subject…” [boldface mine]

Do you see?  Madison advises that when States want amendments, they instruct their Congressional delegation to pursue it.  This is the best way for the States to “originate amendments”!

That is the mode Madison strongly recommended; that is the mode we have followed.  On May 5, 1789, Rep. Bland (pages 258-261) introduced into Congress the petition from the State of Virginia for an Art. V Convention to propose amendments.  But on June 8, 1789, Madison (pages 448-460) introduced 12 proposed amendments for Congress to propose to the State Legislatures.  And on September 24, 1789, the House & Senate having agreed on the wording of the proposed 12 amendments; the House requested the President to transmit them to the States for ratification. 

If we cannot elect to Congress people who will follow the instructions of their State Legislatures & constituents and propose those amendments which actually need to be made; how can we trust Congress to “call” a convention?

And as to another “general” or “runaway” convention, perish the thought!:

On September 15,1787, in response to Randolph’s & Mason’s demands for another “general convention”,  Mr. Pinckney pointed out that nothing but confusion and contrariety will spring from calling forth the deliberations and amendments of the different States, on the subject of government at large.  States will never agree in their plans; and the deputies to a second convention, coming together under the discordant impressions of their constituents, will never agree.  “Conventions are serious things, and ought not to be repeated.”

In Federalist No. 85 (9th para), Hamilton spoke of:

“…the utter improbability of assembling a new convention, under circumstances in any degree so favorable to a happy issue, as those in which the late convention met, deliberated, and concluded…”

James Madison warned against another general convention in his letter to Turberville :

“3… an election into it would be courted by the most violent partizans on both sides; it … would be the very focus of that flame which has already too much heated men of all parties; would no doubt contain individuals of insidious views, who under the mask of seeking alterations popular in some parts but inadmissible in other parts of the Union might have a dangerous opportunity of sapping the very foundations of the fabric. … it seems scarcely to be presumable that the deliberations of the body could be conducted in harmony, or terminate in the general good. Having witnessed the difficulties and dangers experienced by the first Convention, which assembled under every propitious circumstance, I should tremble for the result of a Second, meeting in the present temper of America…” [boldface mine]

Do we have “violent partizans”, “individuals of insidious views”, and any who would exploit an opportunity to sap “the very foundations of the fabric” today?  Yes, we do.  They are in Congress, the executive branch, the federal Courts, “conservative” circles – and they are invading our Country at a furious rate.  And what now is the “present temper of America”?

Why a “Runaway” Article V Convention is a Real Possibility and a Grave Danger.

Pursuant to the authority granted by Article XIII of The Articles of Confederation, the Continental Congress Resolved on February 21, 1787 (p 71-74):

Resolved that in the opinion of Congress it is expedient that on the second Monday in May next a Convention of delegates who shall have been appointed by the several states be held at Philadelphia for the sole and express purpose of revising the Articles of Confederation and reporting to Congress and the several legislatures such alterations and provisions therein as shall when agreed to in Congress and confirmed by the states render the federal constitution adequate to the exigencies of Government & the preservation of the Union.” [boldface mine]

So!  The Convention of 1787 was called by the Continental Congress for the “sole and express purpose” of proposing revisions to the Articles of Confederation.

But the delegates ignored these limitations and wrote a new Constitution. 12

As to delegates, the Continental Congress expressly directed the States to appoint the delegates.

But there is no requirement in Art. V of our Constitution that States be permitted to appoint delegates; and no “custom” from the era of the Continental Congress can bind the Congress of today.

So if Congress of today were to call an Art. V convention, Congress would most likely get delegates who would do what Congress wants.

And will Congress appoint Islamists as delegates?  La Raza Mexicans?  Other special interest groups?  How can Congress be prevented from appointing whomsoever they will?

And if the delegates duly appointed by Congress, and acting under the Authority of Congress, come up with a new Constitution, will the new Constitution outlaw Christianity?  (Obama is outlawing it in the military, and Congress isn’t doing a thing about it).  Will it institute Sharia? Will it disarm the American People?  Will it follow the UN Model where “rights” are privileges granted and withdrawn by the State?  Will it outlaw private property?

And this new Constitution will have its own mode of ratification.  This new mode of ratification can be whatever the delegates want – a majority vote in Congress, perhaps?

There is no way to stop them from “running away” and writing a new Constitution with its own mode of ratification. They can cram a new Constitution down your throat and you won’t be able to do a thing about it.

On page 15, Levin commits a formal fallacy (an argument defective as to form) when he attempts to prove that an Art. V convention can’t possibly turn into a “runaway”. Here is the form of his argument:

  1. He was originally skeptical of “the state convention process” because it could turn into a “runaway”.
  2. Art. V says a proposed amendment has no effect unless ratified by ¾ of the States.
  3. Therefore, the “state convention process” can’t result in a “hijack of the Constitution” [“runaway”].

His conclusion (3) is a form of non sequitur – it doesn’t follow from the premises (1 & 2).  And our concern is not with amendments – those are subject to approval by three-fourths of the States.  Our concern is that the convention will “runaway” and write a new Constitution with a new mode of ratification which does not require approval by three-fourths of the States.  Do you see?

Conclusion

Few of us can name even 5 of the enumerated powers of Congress and 4 of the enumerated powers of the President.  Why?  Because we never bothered to learn our Constitution.  Alexander Hamilton expected THE PEOPLE to be “the natural guardians of the Constitution”.  But you can’t “guard” the Constitution if you don’t trouble yourself to learn it.

Since we never bothered to learn the Constitution, we elected politicians who also hadn’t bothered to learn it.  So they ignored the Constitution when they assumed office.

This is why, after more than 100 years of electing politicians who ignore the Constitution, we are now under tyranny and headed for disaster.

Do we now want a way out which allows us to avoid confronting our own personal failures as Guardians of the Constitution?  When charlatans who “sound good” offer us a scapegoat, do we jump on it?  Do we chant, “The Constitution is broken!  Fix the Constitution!”  And shall we pretend that we too know all about how to amend a Constitution most of us never bothered to read?

Our Constitution depended on our knowing our Constitution and in electing representatives who would obey it – and getting rid of them when they didn’t.

James Madison said on June 20, 1788 at the Virginia Ratifying Convention:

“…. But I go on this great republican principle, that the people will have virtue and intelligence to select men of virtue and wisdom. Is there no virtue among us? If there be not, we are in a wretched situation. No theoretical checks—no form of government can render us secure. To suppose that any form of government will secure liberty or happiness without any virtue in the people, is a chimerical idea. If there be sufficient virtue and intelligence in the community, it will be exercised in the selection of these men. So that we do not depend on their virtue, or put confidence in our rulers, but in the people who are to choose them.”

We are in a “wretched situation” because we lost our virtue.  Renounce handouts and pride in pretended “knowingness”.  Learn the enumerated powers of Congress and the President.  This chart will get you started.  Learn about nullification.  Form delegations and go to your State Legislators, educate them and demand they start nullifying unconstitutional acts of the federal government.  States should nullify obamacare!  If Legislators aren’t willing to renounce federal funding, recall or defeat them! PH

Endnotes:

1 We must stop believing whatever we are told.  We must demand proof by original source documents, and think for ourselves.

2 The President’s Oath is set forth at Art. II, §1, last clause.

3 These are among the remedies our Framers advised when the federal government usurps power:

►In Federalist No. 44 (12th para from end), Madison says elect more faithful representatives!:

“… In the first instance, the success of the usurpation will depend on the executive and judiciary departments, which are to expound and give effect to the legislative acts; and in the last resort a remedy must be obtained from the people who can, by the election of more faithful representatives, annul the acts of the usurpers…”

But we keep reelecting the same sorry people because we know their names and they are in our party.

►States should nullify unconstitutional acts of the federal government! This is proven with links to original sources in James Madison Rebukes Nullification Deniers.

►In Federalist No. 46 (last half), Madison shows how individual States or several States carry out various degrees of resistance to the federal government’s unconstitutional encroachments.  See also: What Should States Do When The Federal Government Usurps Power?

►In Federalist No. 28 (last 5 paras), Hamilton says:

“If the representatives of the people betray their constituents, there is then no resource left but in the exertion of that original right of self-defense which is paramount to all positive forms of government, and which against the usurpations of the national rulers, may be exerted with infinitely better prospect of success …” [italics mine]

“…The obstacles to usurpation and the facilities of resistance increase with the increased extent of the state, provided the citizens understand their rights and are disposed to defend them…”

“It may safely be received as an axiom …that the State governments will … afford complete security against invasions of the public liberty by the national authority…. The legislatures … can at once adopt a regular plan of opposition…”

“…When will the time arrive that the federal government can raise and maintain an army capable of erecting a despotism over the great body of the people … who are in a situation, through the medium of their State governments, to take measures for their own defense…”

4 Thomas Jefferson, The Kentucky Resolutions of 1798, 8th Resolution.

5 James Madison, Notes on Nullification (1834). The quote is near the end.  Use “find” function.

6 Later, I will show why Levin’s proposed amendments gut our Constitution.  Meanwhile, you read the Constitution, learn the enumerated powers of Congress, and see if you can figure out what is wrong with the proposed amendments.  Use your own head and trust no one.

7 Alexander Hamilton said on Sep. 10, 1787 that an easy mode should be established for fixing defects which will probably appear in the new system ... the National Legislature will be the first to perceive, and will be most sensible to, the necessity of amendments…

8 What happened at the Federal Convention of 1787 respecting Art. V is laid out in this 4 page chart.

9 “Citizens for Self-Governance”, headed by the Michael Farris who is pushing the “parental rights amendment, represents that the “Convention of the States” will soon:

“…open the application process for leadership positions across the country. Consider applying to be a District Captain, Legislative Liaison, or State Director…”

thereby making the gullible believe that they can be a “player” in this “Convention of the States”.

10 Phyllis Schlafly, Kelleigh Nelson, Henry Lamb and others have done such a magnificent job of warning The People of the dangers of a constitutional convention, that many now understand that such is likely to result in a new Constitution – with its own method of ratification – being forced on us.

So!  Proponents now call it by another name: “Convention of the States” or “state convention process”.  Is the purpose of the name change to deceive you? To make you think it is something “different” from the Art. V convention Congress calls?

11 In Federalist No. 43, Madison comments on Art. V:

“8…That useful alterations will be suggested by experience, could not but be foreseen. It was requisite, therefore, that a mode for introducing them should be provided. The mode preferred by the convention seems to be stamped with every mark of propriety. It guards equally against that extreme facility, which would render the Constitution too mutable; and that extreme difficulty, which might perpetuate its discovered faults. It, moreover, equally enables the general and the State governments to originate the amendment of errors, as they may be pointed out by the experience on one side, or on the other…”

12 We were fortunate (except for slavery) with the Constitution of 1787, even though the Federal Convention was a “runaway”.  Look who was there!:  George Washington, James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, and Benjamin Franklin; and they weren’t drowned out by subversives.  They would be today. PH

September 15, 2013; revised Dec. 5, 2013; Dec. 31, 2013.

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September 15, 2013 Posted by | Article V, Article V Convention, constitutional convention, Federal Convention of 1787, Mark Levin, The Liberty Amendments | , , , , , | 109 Comments

Restore The Constitution We Have By Learning What It Means!

By Publius Huldah

Our Constitution really was a 5000 Year Miracle.

The attached pdf chart illustrates the Miracle.  You can download it and print it out.

Rights come from God, and the purpose of civil governments is to secure the rights God gave us.

Accordingly, WE THE PEOPLE ordained and established the Constitution for the United States of America wherein we created the federal government. 

A “federal government” is an alliance of Sovereign States associated together in a “federation” with a national government to which is delegated supremacy over the States in specifically defined areas only.

These specifically defined areas are the “enumerated powers” WE delegated to the three branches of the national (“federal”) government.

The States and The People retained all other powers.

The pdf chart depicts the elegant simplicity of our Constitution; lists the few and defined powers WE delegated to the national government for the Country at Large; shows how the powers WE delegated to the national government secure specific God given rights; and shows the retention of all other powers by the States and The People.

Our Constitution isn’t broken!  Our Constitution isn’t outdated. The problem is that WE – who are “the natural guardians” of the Constitution – didn’t bother to learn it.  Since we didn’t bother to learn it, we elected representatives who also hadn’t bothered to learn it.  And so everyone ignores it.

And we abandoned the religious and moral foundation of our Constitution.

It is our own ignorance of our existing Constitution, and the collapse of religion and morality which have brought us to the brink of destruction.

Our Constitution doesn’t need “fixing”!  The only Amendments we need are to repeal some of the previous Amendments we got deceived into approving.

WE THE PEOPLE need “fixing”.  Restoration of our religious and moral foundation and our Constitution is the Answer to the Healing of our Land.

Let the Restoration begin with you.  Share this Article.  Print out the chart.  Study it.  Flesh it out with your own personal readings of the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bible.  Have study groups in your home.  You can become a “guardian” of the Constitution. PH

September 1, 2013

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September 1, 2013 Posted by | 10th Amendment, Enumerated Powers of Congress, Federalism, Guardians of the Constitution, Rights, States Retained Powers | , , , , , | 18 Comments

Impeachment: All you need to know (and you do need to know it).

By Publius Huldah

1. It is NOT necessary that the President, other officers in the executive branch, or federal judges commit a crime before they may be impeached & removed from office.

Federalist Paper No. 66 (2nd para) & Federalist  No. 77 (last para) show that the President may be impeached & removed for encroachments, i.e., usurpations of power.

Federal judges may also be impeached & removed for usurpations of power (Federalist No. 81, 8th para).

Throughout The Federalist Papers, it is stated that impeachment is for “political offenses”.

2. The House has the SOLE power of impeachment (Art. I, Sec. 2, last clause).  The Senate has the SOLE power to try all impeachments (Art. I, Sec. 3, next to last clause).  The decision to convict is not reviewable by any other body – and common sense tells us what that means!  The House may impeach, and the Senate may convict, for any reason whatsoever; and their decision cannot be overturned.

3. The meaning of “Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors” at Art. II, Sec. 4, is far broader than one might at first glance think.  Somewhere I saw a scholarly paper showing that the “high” refers to the status of the official – it does not refer to the severity of the offense.

Now, note well!  “Misdemeanor” has a broader meaning than “a lesser category of criminal offense”.  Webster’s 1828 Dictionary shows the primary meaning is:  “Ill behavior; evil conduct; fault; mismanagement.”

This shows that a President, Vice-president, and all civil Officers and Judges of the United States may be impeached, tried, convicted, and removed from office for “mismanagement”.

4. Errant members of Congress are never impeached – they are expelled by their respective Houses (Art. I, Sec. 5, cl. 2).

5. Military personnel are never impeached – they are court-martialed (see UCMJ – Uniform Code of Military Justice), and may be kicked out of the military as part of their punishment.  They also may be administratively discharged.

6. It is not feasible to criminally prosecute, under federal law, a sitting President: his prosecutors, the Attorney General and the U.S. Attorneys, all serve at the President’s pleasure.  He can fire anyone who dares to criminally prosecute him.  That is why sitting Presidents who have committed federal crimes must first be removed from office via impeachment, then be criminally prosecuted.  (Federalist No. 69, 4th para).

But do not forget: A President may – and should – be impeached & removed for usurpations of power, mismanagement, incompetence, or for any other reason deemed sufficient by Congress.

7.  The lawful methods of getting rid of a sitting President [whether eligible or not to hold the office], in addition to impeachment, are set forth in the 25th Amendment: Natural death, resignation, or inability to do the job.

8.  The 22nd Amendment permits Congress to make laws providing for succession where a President elect has not qualified.

Do not spin your wheels in fruitless insistence that a person (who may still be an Indonesian national) who occupies the office of President can’t be impeached because he is ineligible to hold that office.  The FACT is that he holds the office.  Impeachment is a lawful & constitutional method to rid ourselves of occupants of that office and of this particular blight. PH

August 8, 2013

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August 8, 2013 Posted by | Article II, Sec. 4, High crimes and misdemeanors, Impeachment | , , , | 27 Comments

Parental Rights: God-given and Unalienable? Or Government-granted and Revocable?

By Publius Huldah

Our Declaration of Independence says:

   “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.– That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it…”  (2nd para) [emphasis mine]

So!  Rights come from God; they are unalienable; the purpose of government is to secure the rights God gave us; and when government takes away our God given rights, it’s time to “throw off such Government”.  

That is our Founding Principle.

Let us now compare our Founding Principle with the U.N.’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights.  It enumerates 30 some “rights”, among which are:

“Article 8 Everyone has the right to an effective remedy by the competent national tribunals for acts violating the fundamental rights granted him by the constitution or by law.

Article 21 … 3. The will of the people shall be the basis of the authority of government; this will shall be expressed in periodic and genuine elections …

Article 29 … 2. In the exercise of his rights and freedoms, everyone shall be subject only to such limitations as are determined by law solely for the purpose of securing due recognition and respect for the rights and freedoms of others and of meeting the just requirements of morality, public order and the general welfare in a democratic society.

3. These rights and freedoms may in no case be exercised contrary to the purposes and principles of the United Nations.” [all boldface mine]

So! Rights are enumerated; they come from man [constitutions or laws]; governments may do whatever a majority of people want them to do [instead of securing rights God gave us]; and rights may be limited by law & are subject to the will of the United Nations [not God].

Now, let’s look at the Parental Rights Amendment (PRA) from the website of parentalrights.org  and compare it with the U.N.’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights:  1

“SECTION 1

The liberty of parents to direct the upbringing, education, and care of their children is a fundamental right.

SECTION 2

The parental right to direct education includes the right to choose public, private, religious, or home schools, and the right to make reasonable choices within public schools for one’s child.

SECTION 3

Neither the United States nor any State shall infringe these rights without demonstrating that its governmental interest as applied to the person is of the highest order and not otherwise served.

SECTION 4

This article shall not be construed to apply to a parental action or decision that would end life.  [all boldface mine]

SECTION 5
No treaty may be adopted nor shall any source of international law be employed to supersede, modify, interpret, or apply to the rights guaranteed by this article.”

So!  Under the PRA, parental rights come from the Constitution – not God.  They are only “fundamental” rights, not unalienable rights.  They are enumerated rights, the extent of which will be decided by federal judges. 2 And these “fundamental” rights may be infringed by law when the federal or State governments have a good reason for infringing them.

And even though parental rights.org uses the U.N. Declaration on the Rights of the Child to terrorize parents into supporting the PRA; 3 the PRA itself  is the repudiation of our Founding Principles that Rights come from God and are unalienable, and that the sole purpose of civil government is to secure the rights GOD gave us; and adoption of the U.N. theory that rights come from the State, will be determined by the State, and are revocable at the will of the State.

Let’s turn to Michael Farris’ paper posted July 9, 2013 in Freedom Outpost.  His paper followed my initial paper where I addressed, Section by Section, the PRA of which Farris is principal author.  He is also Executive Director of parental rights.org

1. Mr. Farris’ rationale for the PRA: Scalia’s Dissent in Troxel v. Granville (2000)

Farris cites Scalia’s dissent to support his own perverse theory that unless a right is enumerated in the federal Constitution, judges can’t enforce it, and the right can’t be protected.

But Farris ignores the majority’s holding in Troxel, and misstates the gist of Scalia’s dissent.  I’ll show you.

This case originated in the State of Washington, and involved a State Statute (§26.10.160(3)) addressing visitation rights by persons who were not parents.  Two grandparents filed an action under this State Statute wanting increased visitation of their grandchildren.  The mother (Granville) was willing to permit some visitation, but not as much as the grandparents wanted.

This State family law case got to the U.S. supreme Court on the ground that the “due process clause” of the 14th Amendment was at stake.

And what did the supreme Court say in Troxel v. Granville ?

“…In light of this extensive precedent, it cannot now be doubted that the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment protects the fundamental right of parents to make decisions concerning the care, custody, and control of their children…

“…We therefore hold that the application of §26.10.160(3) to Granville and her family violated her due process right to make decisions concerning the care, custody, and control of her daughters.”  [all boldface mine]

Do you see?  The supreme Court has already “discovered”, in Sec. 1 of the 14th Amendment, a parental right to make decisions about the care, custody, and control of children.

Now! In order to understand Scalia’s dissent, one must first learn:

  • That the powers of the federal courts are enumerated and strictly defined; and
  • The original intent of Sec. 1 of the 14th Amendment, and how the supreme Court perverted it.

These are explained in detail here: Judicial Abuse of the Fourteenth Amendment: Abortion, Sexual Orientation, & Gay Marriage.   In a nutshell, the linked paper shows that federal courts may lawfully hear only cases falling within the categories enumerated at Art. III, Sec. 2, cl. 1, U.S. Constitution.  One of these categories is cases:

“…arising under this Constitution…”

In Federalist Paper No. 80 (2nd para), Alexander Hamilton says that before a case can properly be said to “arise under the Constitution”, it must:

“…concern the execution of the provisions expressly contained in the articles of Union…” [emphasis added]

So! Does our federal Constitution “expressly contain” provisions about abortion?  Homosexual sex?  Homosexual marriage?  Parental rights?  No, it does not.

Since these matters are not delegated to the federal government, they are reserved to the States and The People (10th Amendment). The federal government has no lawful authority over these issues.

Well, then, how did the supreme Court overturn State Statutes criminalizing abortion and   homosexual sex, and State Statutes addressing parental rights?

They used the “due process” clause of Sec. 1 of the 14th Amendment to usurp power over these issues.  Section 1 says:

“All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.” [boldface mine]

Professor Raoul Berger proves in his book, Government by Judiciary: The Transformation of the Fourteenth Amendment, that the purpose of the 14th Amendment was to extend citizenship to freed slaves and protect them from southern Black Codes which denied them basic rights of citizenship.

Professor Berger also shows (Ch. 11) that “due process” is a term with a “precise technical import” going back to the Magna Charta.  It means that a person’s life, liberty or property can’t be taken away from him except by the judgment of his peers pursuant to a fair trial!

Professor Berger stresses that “due process of law” refers only to trials - to judicial proceedings in courts of justice.  It does not involve judicial power to override State Statutes!

Justice Scalia understands this.

And now, you can understand Scalia’s dissent.  What he actually says is:

  • Parental rights are “unalienable” and come from God (Declaration of Independence). They are among the retained rights of the people (9th Amendment).   [Parental rights don’t come from the 14th Amendment!]
  • The Declaration of Independence does not delegate powers to federal courts.  It is the federal Constitution which delegates powers to federal courts.
  • It is for State Legislators and candidates for that office to argue that the State has no power to interfere with parents’ God-given authority over the rearing of their children, and to act accordingly. [The People need to elect State Legislators who understand that the State may not properly infringe God given parental rights.]
  • The federal Constitution does not authorize judges to come up with their own lists of what “rights” people have 4 and use their lists to overturn State statutes.  [That is what the supreme Court did when they fabricated “liberty rights” to abortion and homosexual sex, and overturned State Statutes criminalizing these acts.]
  • The federal Constitution does not mention “parental rights” – such cases do not “arise under the Constitution”.   So federal courts have no “judicial power” over such cases.

In his closing, Scalia warns against turning family law over to the federal government:

“…If we embrace this unenumerated right … we will be ushering in a new regime of judicially prescribed, and federally prescribed, family law. I have no reason to believe that federal judges will be better at this than state legislatures; and state legislatures have the great advantages of doing harm in a more circumscribed area, of being able to correct their mistakes in a flash, and of being removable by the people.  [emphasis mine]

Do you see?  “Parental rights” is a state matter; and parents need to replace bad State legislators.

But the PRA delegates power over “parental rights” to the federal government and makes it an enumerated power. 

So!  When Farris says:

“4. The Parental Rights Amendment does not give the Judiciary legislative power but constrains the judiciary’s exercise of its existing power.”

His words are false.  The PRA transforms what is now a usurped power over parental rights seized by the supreme Court by perverting Sec. 1 of the 14th Amendment [the majority opinion in Troxel illustrates this],  to an enumerated power of the federal government.

2. The PRA expressly delegates to the federal and State governments power to infringe God-given parental rights!

Mr. Farris asserts that the PRA gives no power to Congress over children because he – the principal author of the PRA – purposefully left out the language which appears in other amendments that “Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation”.

So!  What did Farris put in his PRA?  Look at his SECTION 3:

Neither the United States nor any State shall infringe these rights without demonstrating that its governmental interestas applied to the person is of the highest order and not otherwise served.” [emphasis mine]

The wording assumes the federal and State governments will be making laws “infringing” parental rights!  And because of the PRA, such laws will be constitutional! 5

The only issue will be whether such acts of Congress [the Legislative Branch of the federal government] “serve the government’s interest”.  And who will decide?  The federal courts [the Judicial Branch of the federal government] will decide.

The same goes for State Statutes and State courts.

Furthermore, Acts of Congress or State Statutes need only recite the boilerplate language that the law “serves the government’s interest, etc.”, and it will go to the courts clothed with a presumption of correctness.

3. The PRA is not “just like” the Second Amendment

Mr. Farris says the PRA is

“… just like the Second Amendment in this regard. The Second Amendment gives no level of government the power to regulate guns. (Any such power comes from some other provision of the Constitution [state or federal]). And the Second Amendment is a limitation on the exercise of such powers.”

Rubbish!

WE THE PEOPLE did not delegate to the federal government power to restrict our arms.

The 2nd Amendment shows that WE THE PEOPLE really meant it when we declined to give the federal government enumerated power to restrict our arms.

So!  As shown here, all federal laws and rules of the BATF pertaining to background checks, dealer licensing, banning sawed off shotguns, etc., are unconstitutional as outside the scope of the enumerated powers delegated to the federal government, and as in violation of the 2nd Amendment.

The PRA is not “just like” the 2nd Amendment because the PRA is an express delegation of power over children and parental rights to the federal and State governments!

4. Pen Names

Publius is the pen name used by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay when, during 1787 and 1788, they wrote The Federalist Papers to explain the proposed Constitution and induce The People to ratify it.

Huldah is the prophet at 2 Kings 22.  The Book of the Law had been lost for a long time.  When it was found, it was taken to Huldah who gave guidance about it to the king and his priests.

Do you see?  And it’s about Our Country – not my personal glory, fame, and fundraising.

My qualifications?  My work speaks for itself.

5. Learn the Constitution and understand the PRA?  Or put your trust in Farris?

My previous paper is about the PRA and our Constitution.  It isn’t about Mr. Farris.

But Farris’ response is about persons:  429 of his 2,044 words are devoted to his illustrious self; 170 words are spent to disparage Publius Huldah.

I teach the original intent of our Constitution so that our People can become what Alexander Hamilton expected them to be:

“… a people enlightened enough to distinguish between a legal exercise and an illegal usurpation of authority…”  Federalist Paper No. 16 (next to last para)

To that end, I have published some 50 papers proving that original intent, using The Federalist Papers as the best evidence of that original intent.

We must all do our civic duty and learn our Founding Principles and Constitution so that we can learn to think for ourselves and help restore our Constitutional Republic.

But Farris says you should believe in … him.  He says: 

“6. Who are you going to believe—a trusted advocate for parental rights or an anonymous blogger?”

He doesn’t ask you to learn and think – he asks you to believe … in him.

6. An Alternative Organization: National Home Education Legal Defense (NHELD)

NHELD has been warning for years about the Parental Rights Amendment.  NHELD

“…does not believe in blindly following the word of anyone. NHELD … does not believe in just directing families to act in unison on the basis of an opinion that NHELD … has formed on its own. NHELD … believes in an informed, empowered citizenry, who is able to fight for freedom effectively…”

NHELD advises:

“…individuals not to take the word of anyone else about what … legislation says, but to read the text for themselves …”

7. How do Governments “secure” our God given Rights?

Our rights must be “secured” from people & civil governments who seek to take them away.

For an illustration of how the enumerated powers delegated to the federal government enable it to “secure” our God given rights to life, liberty & property, see James Madison Rebukes Nullification Deniers, under the subheading, Our Founding Principles in a Nutshell. The federal government isn’t to secure these rights in all ways – just in those ways appropriate to the national government of a Federation of Sovereign States.

The powers reserved by The States and The People enable the States to secure these rights in the ways appropriate to States.  States secure our right to life by prosecuting murderers, drunk drivers, quarantining people with infectious deadly diseases, etc.  States secure our property rights by prosecuting robbers; by providing courts for recovery for fraud, breach of contract; etc.

Our federal Constitution secures our God given rights by strictly limiting the powers of Congress, the powers of the President, and the powers of the federal courts.

Civil governments are controlled by limiting their powers.

To delegate to the federal government express power to infringe “parental rights” under the pretext of “protecting” such rights is absurd! But that is Farris’ argument. 

Parents!  Justice Scalia gives excellent advice: elect to your State Legislature people who understand that your responsibilities to your children are determined by God alone.

We must stop looking for the magic pill, roll up our sleeves, man up, and fix our own States.

Conclusion

The PRA is a radical transformation of our conception of Rights from being unalienable gifts of God to the UN Model where “rights” are granted by government and revocable at the will of government.  This is being sold to you as a means of “protecting” your parental rights!  But it transfers power over children to the federal and State governments.  You are being told to trust the “experts” and “believe” what they tell you.  But if the PRA is ratified, the federal and State governments will have constitutional authority to infringe your “parental rights”.   And you will have no recourse.

POSTSCRIPT Added August 22, 2013:  You need to understand that the poisonous & deceptive “parental rights amendment” is what would give the federal government and the state governments CONSTITUTIONAL AUTHORITY to implement the hellish plan described in the attached link.  Once they have constitutional authority you will have no recourse but to take up arms.

http://thecommonsenseshow.com/2013/08/17/the-mother-of-all-conspiracies-aimed-at-our-children/#comment-10633

Endnotes:

1Craigers61 pointed out that Section 3 of the PRA is a paraphrase of [Article 29] of the UN [Declaration] in which:

“… all of the rights “given” by the UN earlier in the document can be taken back if any right goes against the UN’s “mission.” It’s a big finger on the chess piece in which the Political power can take back the right granted at any time they deem…

…Also, do you see the other problem here? The STATE grants the right to the parents! … In classical liberalism, the philosophy that founded the USA, all rights are INALEIANBLE! They reside in the human being themselves! They cannot be given, they cannot be taken and they cannot be circumscribed by the STATE…”

2 Bob in Florida asks Farris:

“But, what you say we must do – pass the Parental Rights Amendment – to defeat the Scalia argument that there is no legal text to cite to allow parents to have rights to direct their children’s education, medical care, etc., requires that we do exactly what the writers of the Constitution did not want to do – enumerate each and every right we have.

Their reason was that this would require that we enumerate each and every right and to leave one out would imply we don’t have that right. Their chosen approach was to only define the powers given to the government and all others were reserved to the States or the People.  [emphasis mine]

Are you not advocating we do exactly what they didn’t want to do – enumerate each and every right?”

3 Congress may lawfully ratify only treaties which address enumerated powers. Since “parental rights” & “children” are not enumerated powers, any ratified treaty addressing such would be a proper object of nullification.  But if the PRA is ratified, then these will be enumerated powers, and the Senate will have lawful authority to ratify the UN Declaration on the Rights of the Child.

4 It is GOD’s prerogative to decide what Rights we have.  Not mans’.

5 Un-anonymous blogger Doug Newman pointed out four years ago that:

“…The PRA actually puts a constitutional blessing on federal intrusion into parenting…” 

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July 28, 2013; postscript added August 22, 2013

July 28, 2013 Posted by | 14th Amendment, Amendments: Parental Rights Amendment, Declaration of Independence, Michael Farris, Parental Rights Amendment, parentalrights.org, Troxel v. Granville, UN Declaration of Rights | , , , , , , , | 29 Comments

Parental Rights Amendment: Selling You and Your Kids Out to Big Government

By Publius Huldah

If politicians introduced a bill mandating the slaughter of all human babies under the age of two years; but called it, “The Little Babies Protection Act”, establishment conservatives and unthinking people all over the Country would be clamoring for its passage.

We have become a shallow and easily deceived people. If it sounds good on the surface, we are all for it. We assume the   proposal will live up to its name. 1 We don’t trouble ourselves to actually read proposals and analyze them before we clamor for passage.

The name, “parental rights amendment” (PRA), sounds so good!  But it actually strips parents of their God-delegated authority over their children, and transfers that authority to the federal government.

In order to understand this, you must first learn about “enumerated powers”.

 Enumerated Powers

When WE THE PEOPLE ordained and established the Constitution for the United States, We listed, itemized – enumerated – every power WE delegated to each branch of the federal government over the Country at Large.  All other powers were retained by The States or The People.

James Madison, Father of our Constitution, says in Federalist No. 45 (3rd para from end):

“The powers delegated by the proposed Constitution to the federal government are few and defined. Those which are to remain in the State governments are numerous and indefinite. The former will be exercised principally on external objects, as war, peace, negotiation, and foreign commerce; with which last the power of taxation will, for the most part, be connected. The powers reserved to the several States will extend to all the objects which … concern the lives, liberties, and properties of the people, and the internal order, improvement, and prosperity of the State.” [boldface mine]

Do you see? We delegated only “few and defined” powers to the federal government over the Country at Large. These are the “enumerated powers” actually listed in the Constitution. 2

These enumerated powers over the Country at Large concern:

  • Military defense, international commerce & relations;
  • Control of immigration and naturalization of new citizens;
  • Creation of a uniform commercial system: Weights & measures, patents & copyrights, money based on gold & silver, bankruptcy laws, mail delivery & some road building; and
  • With some Amendments, protect certain civil rights and voting rights.

It is only with respect to the “enumerated powers” that the federal government has lawful authority over the Country at Large. All other powers are “reserved to the several States” and The People. 3

So!  Where in the Constitution did WE THE PEOPLE delegate to the federal government power over children and their care and upbringing?  We didn’t.  Accordingly, it has no lawful authority over these objects.

Thus, any federal law, treaty 4, executive order, agency rule, or court opinion which pretends to exercise such power over children is unconstitutional as outside the scope of enumerated powers delegated to the federal government for the Country at Large. 5

See?  This is all very simple.

So then, how does the federal government go about obtaining lawful authority over the care and upbringing of children? By means of lies, trickery and deceit:

The so-called “Parental Rights” Amendment

 Let us now read it. Here it is from the website of the deceptively named, parentalrights.org:6

“SECTION 1

The liberty of parents to direct the upbringing, education, and care of their children is a fundamental right.

SECTION 2

The parental right to direct education includes the right to choose public, private, religious, or home schools, and the right to make reasonable choices within public schools for one’s child.

SECTION 3

Neither the United States nor any State shall infringe these rights without demonstrating that its governmental interest as applied to the person is of the highest order and not otherwise served.

SECTION 4

This article shall not be construed to apply to a parental action or decision that would end life.

SECTION 5
No treaty may be adopted nor shall any source of international law be employed to supersede, modify, interpret, or apply to the rights guaranteed by this article.”

Look again at Section 3!

We will go through each section.  But first, two general observations:

Parents have Responsibilities to their children, not “rights” over them.

The Creator God who – as recognized by the Signers of our Declaration of Independence – endowed us with unalienable Rights; also assigned to parents specific responsibilities to their children. 7 Among these are:

  • Provision for children: 2 Corinthians 12:14; Proverbs 13:22; 1 Timothy 5:8; 2 Thessalonians 3:10-12.
  • Educaton and moral instruction of children:  Proverbs 1:8-9, 6:20-21, 13:1, 22:6 & 23:19-22; Genesis 18:19; Deuteronomy 4:9-10 & 6:1-7; Ephesians 6:1-4; 2 Timothy 1:5  & 3:15-17.
  • Discipline of children: Proverbs 13: 24, 15:5, 19:18, 22:15, 23:12-14, 29:15-17; Hebrews 12:5-11; Colossians 3:21.

Parents are supposed to provide for, care for, teach, protect, and educate their children.  NOT civil government!

The Judicial Power of the Federal Courts

Article III, Sec. 2, cl. 1, U.S. Constitution, enumerates the powers of the federal courts:

“The judicial Power shall extend to all Cases, in Law and Equity, arising under this Constitution, the Laws of the United States, and Treaties made, or which shall be made, under their Authority;…”

“Judicial Power” refers to the power of courts to hear and decide cases.

Amendments are part of the Constitution.  Thus, federal courts have power to decide issues addressed by Amendments.

The PRA would transform “families” and “children” from matters over which the federal government now has no lawful authority to matters under the total control of the federal government.

The PRA is a delegation of lawmaking power over families and children to the federal government. Congress may make whatever laws it pleases pertaining to YOUR children; the Executive Branch may issue whatever rules or orders it pleases pertaining to YOUR children – and under Section 3 of the PRA, federal judges will decide whether these laws, orders & rules serve the government’s interest.  If so, you lose.

Lawsuits involving these matters would become cases “arising under this Constitution”, or “Laws of the United States”, or “Treaties”, which would ultimately be decided by five (5) judges on the supreme Court.  The authority of millions and millions of American parents would be transferred to five (5) judges on the supreme Court.

That Court has a long history of perverting every word of our Constitution it touches. 8 It is suicidal to transfer Family Authority to that Court.

Let us now look at each section of the PRA:

Section 1: The liberty of parents to direct the upbringing, education, and care of their children is a fundamental right.”

Just as the supreme Court sees the First Amendment as the source of our right to free speech, and they decide what speech is protected by that Amendment and what speech is not, 8 so it will see the PRA as the source of “parental rights”, and they will decide what “rights” parents have and what “rights” they do not have.

Consider also:  Do the words “upbringing” or “care” in Section 1 include religious training, discipline, diet, medical treatment, and whether the child may wield a hoe in the family garden?  What does it mean that these are not listed?  That parents have no “rights” regarding these issues? The supreme Court will decide what it means.

Section 2:  The parental right to direct education includes the right to choose public, private, religious, or home schools, and the right to make reasonable choices within public schools for one’s child.”

What is not included in the parental right to direct education? What is a “reasonable” choice?  Who decides what is not included and what choices are “reasonable”?  Federal judges decide.

“Section 3: Neither the United States nor any State shall infringe these rights without demonstrating that its governmental interest as applied to the person is of the highest order and not otherwise served.”

Do you understand this Section?  Whatever “parental rights” you think you have will be infringed by the federal government or the State governments if they have a good reason for it.  Federal judges will decide whether the federal or State governments have a good reason to infringe your “parental rights”.

Section 4: This article shall not be construed to apply to a parental action or decision that would end life.”

What?  Does this mean that parents retained the “right” to make these decisions?  Or does it mean that the PRA does not “protect” that right, hence parents no longer have it?

I suggest to you that federal courts will construe this section to mean that parents will no longer be permitted to make decisions about terminating or continuing medical care for their seriously ill, injured, or “defective” (Downs’ syndrome, birth defects, etc.) children.

Do not forget:  We elected as President a man who supports the murder of little babies who survive abortions.  9 Is this man going to appoint federal judges who disagree with the killing of children?

Section 5: No treaty may be adopted nor shall any source of international law be employed to supersede, modify, interpret, or apply to the rights guaranteed by this article.”

The PRA does not stop the President and Senate from ratifying the UN Declaration on The Rights of the Child.

NO RIGHTS ARE GUARANTEED BY THE PRA! You cannot name one “parental right” which cannot be voided if the federal or state government shows federal judges that the government has an interest in voiding the right.

Further, since the PRA makes federal control of children an enumerated power, it is the PRA itself which would give the U.S. Senate constitutional authority to ratify the U.N. Declaration on the Rights of the Child!

The PRA is monstrously deceitful.

Here is the PRA which has been introduced in the current Session of Congress:  H.J. Res. 50

Here is a list of House sponsors of the PRA in this Session of Congress. Form delegations and go see your Representatives.  Instruct them!  I bet they never read it before they endorsed it.

Put Not Your Trust in Princes

People!  Your blind trust in charlatans and politicians is destroying us.  They pretend to be what they are not in order to deceive you.  Stop flaunting your blind trust as a mark of virtue.  Blind trust in humans is irresponsible – it is not a virtue.  PH

Endnotes:

1 E.g., we assume the “Balanced Budget” Amendment is about curtailing federal spending.  Since we don’t look behind the name, we don’t know that the BBA is really about eliminating the enumerated powers limitation on spending & legalizing what is now unconstitutional spending.

2 See:  Congress’ Enumerated Powers, the President’s Enumerated Powers, & the Enumerated Powers of the Federal Courts.

3 Read the Tenth Amendment!

4 parental rights.org has been using the UN Declaration on the Rights of the Child to terrorize parents into believing that only the PRA can save them from the UN Declaration.

You must learn about the treaty making powers of the United States.  The President and Senate may not lawfully circumvent the Constitution by international treaties – they may not do by treaty what they are forbidden to do by the Constitution.  Since the Constitution delegates NO powers over children to the federal government, they may not lawfully circumvent the Constitution by ratifying the UN Declaration.  These 2 papers explain the treaty-making power.

It is the PRA which would give the federal government lawful authority to ratify the UN Declaration!  Because issues relating to “children” would become an enumerated power delegated to the federal government by the PRA itself!   So the PRA is a monstrous deception.

5 Accordingly, they are proper objects of nullification.

6 Parental rights.org periodically changes the text of their proposed PRA.  The version set forth herein was copied from their website during June 2013.

7 To my friends in the Ayn Rand camp:  These are historical facts – the Bible says what it says and our Framers believed it.  Ayn Rand had no argument with the Natural Law Principle that parents have the responsibility of raising their own children.

8 The supreme Court looked at the word, “liberty” in Sec. 1 of the 14th Amendment and said it means “privacy”; and “privacy” means “women may kill their unborn babies”!  A short time later, they looked at the same word and decided that it means, “homosexual sex is a liberty right”!  Do you see?  That Court treats the 14th Amendment as Marquis de Sade’s play dough.

And look at how that Court has butchered the First Amendment:  That Amendment says, in part:

“Congress shall make no law …abridging the freedom of speech…”

Since speech control is not one of the enumerated powers delegated to Congress over the Country at Large; and since all legislative Powers granted by our Constitution are vested in Congress (Art. I, Sec. 1); neither the Executive nor Judicial Branches have power over “speech” for the Country at Large.

Regulation of speech is reserved to the States and the People (10th Amendment). The States exercised this retained power by means of State laws against defamation, intentional infliction of emotional distress, intrusion upon seclusion, publicity given to private life, etc., etc.

Yet the supreme Court treats the First Amendment as the source of our right to free speech, and they decide what speech is “protected” by the First Amendment and what speech is “not protected” by the First Amendment.  If the former, you may say it; if the latter, you may not say it.  The supreme Court has usurped power to censor our speech!

So!  In Snyder v. Phelps (2011), the Westboro Baptists picketed, with vile and defamatory signs, the funeral of an American Soldier who was killed in action. The bereaved Father filed a lawsuit under various State Laws such as defamation, intentional infliction of emotional distress, etc.

The Jury found for the Father and held Westboro liable for $2.9 million in compensatory damages and $8 million in punitive damages.

But the supreme Court overturned the Jury Verdict and said that the Westboro Baptists had a “right” protected by the First Amendment to spew their malice at this young soldier’s funeral, and it mowed down the State laws which made such defamatory speech actionable.

This is how the supreme Court construes an Amendment which merely prohibits CONGRESS from making laws restricting speech! 

The federal government has no lawful authority over speech in the Country at Large!  Yet those lawless judges on the supreme Court have also seized power to forbid students from leading Christian prayers in the public schools!

9 Jill Stanek is an RN who worked in the Labor & Delivery Department in an Illinois hospital where aborted babies born alive were left to die.  Read her article where she proves that our President opposed Illinois’ Born Alive Infant Protection Act.  Obama wanted the babies to die.  How can you put YOUR children in the hands of judges this man nominates? PH

UPDATE!  Michael Farris, Esq., the executive director of parentalrights.org, who has said that he is the primary author of the PRA, has posted a response to my paper here:  http://freedomoutpost.com/2013/07/michael-farris-of-hslda-reponds-to-publius-huldahs-critique-of-the-parental-rights-amendment/

By all means, go read it – and the comments!

July 11, 2013

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July 11, 2013 Posted by | Amendments: Parental Rights Amendment, Parental Rights Amendment, parentalrights.org | | 23 Comments

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