Do you think that there are any limits upon what kind of laws your government can enact? I ask this because I think many do not understand what tyranny is. I think many people have the wrong impression as to what tyranny actually is. As far as I’m concerned a tyrannical government is one that does not permit the people it governs from enjoying the full measure of their rights and liberty.
You see, I don’t particularly care whether tyrannical laws are enacted for the overall public safety, for the national security, or simply because some people don’t like it that other people are doing something – if a law restricts a single individual from fully exercising their rights and enjoying the God-given gift of liberty, it is tyrannical as far as I’m concerned.
The way I see things is our government has evolved from one which was supposedly established to secure liberty for all to one which is a contest between two opposing ideologies in which they vie for control of a system so that they can impose their ideology upon the other. Under such a system the only thing that loses, no matter which opposing side wins an election, is liberty.
I sit back and watch the Republicans and Democrats in this country argue with each other; as they try to discredit the character of those whose ideologies they oppose; who think that replacing one schmuck with another is going to make things better, and I am torn between breaking into hysterical fits of laughter or weeping is sorrow.
Most people simply cannot see that no matter which side of this spectacle wins control of our system of government, the system itself wins and we continually lose more of our freedom. It is not the ‘other’ side that is your enemy, it is the system itself; and as long as you are stuck in the rut of choosing which side gets to control the system that is never going to change.
People offer up all kinds of excuses as to why they support this candidate or that one for a particular office, but when I ask them whether or not the things that candidate is promising to do is authorized by the Constitution, they become deathly quiet; for they cannot answer that question without exposing their own ignorance. This was true for the supporters of Barack Obama and it is true for the supporters of Donald Trump. Arguing that one side is better than the other is like saying getting shot in the foot is better than getting shot in the head; when the fact is that getting shot anywhere sucks.
While most people are focused on preventing the other side from obtaining control of this system, they fail to realize that there are some people in this country who simply do not want to have this system telling them how to live their lives; and taxing them upwards of 50% to fund these laws that do just that.
The problem is, with the mindset of most Americans, that they believe that this system has the authority to decide the extent of its own powers; and that the only way to be free of laws the people do not like is for the ‘other side’ to repeal them. If there truly was a huge difference between the two political parties in America, the first two years of any president’s administration would be spent repealing the laws the other side passed, and the next two years would be spent enacting the laws they want the people to submit to. But that never, or rarely, happens. What happens is that each side enacts more laws; adding to the mountain of laws that tell us what we can and cannot do.
Are you incapable of seeing that under such a system YOU lose; that YOUR FREEDOM loses?
Getting back to my original question, if you truly think that there are limits upon the kind of laws your government can enact, where are those limits found? Are they to be found in whatever the people will tolerate? Are they to be found in whatever your elected representatives decide is within their authority to do? Are they to be determined by the courts; who are part of the system as well?
As we supposedly have a representative form of government, one that derives its authority from the consent of the governed, logic states that there must be some legal document that outlines what powers this representative government shall be allowed to exercise on behalf of those who created it. If no such document exists, then government is arbitrary; meaning it can enact whatever laws it wants, or whatever laws it thinks the people will tolerate without revolting.
The unfortunate thing under such a belief is that the public becomes accustomed to violations of their rights and infringement upon their liberty, and once that happens they tend not to resist any further encroachment upon their rights and liberty. Therefore, each succeeding generation becomes more enslaved to the system; simply because they have become desensitized to infringements upon their freedom.
My grandparents would be astounded at the laws we have allowed to be passed by this government with nary a whimper of protest. Likewise, their grandparents would have been astounded at the laws THEY allowed to be passed without any kind of protest. The true mark of a freeman is not whether they support or oppose a law based upon whether or not it was passed by their party, but whether or not they support a law because it either promotes or restricts liberty.
So, again I ask you, do you think there are any limits upon what kind of laws your government can enact; if so, where are those limits found? And, if there are any real limits, why do you continue to support this SYSTEM when it chooses to ignore those limits?
Let me ask you something. Let’s say that the government enacts a law that 99% of the people do not like. What recourse do the people have when that happens? The government has, at its disposal, an army of armed thugs whose sole purpose in life is ensuring that we the sheeple obey the laws enacted by government. It doesn’t matter whether or not the people like the law, if they resist it they can be fined, jailed, or shot by these armed thugs.
Now let’s take that example and change the parameters. Let’s say that the government enacts a law that 50% of the people like, while the other 50% don’t like. Does that not make the 50% that oppose the law slaves to the 50% who like it?
Now let’s take that even further. Let’s say the government enacts a law that 90% of the people like, while 10% of the people don’t like it. Does that not make the 10% slaves to the will of the majority?
If government, as you have been led to believe, is truly established to secure liberty to all, then it cannot, without the grossest of injustices, enact a law that violates the right of even one person. Some people in this country claim that the government must enact certain laws to defend and protect the rights of minorities. While I’m all for defending rights, I oppose any effort to restrict the rights of one group to benefit another. Ayn Rand once said, “The smallest minority on earth is the individual. Those who deny individual rights cannot claim to be defenders of minorities.”
To recap so far, it would seem we have a system that derives its authority from whatever a majority of the people believe are the extent of the powers given this form of government. When the truth is that there is a written document that both describes the shape this system of government shall take, and the powers it shall be allowed to exercise on our behalf.
When this system of government exceeds the limits imposed upon it you have tyranny; regardless of whether or not the laws being enacted have the support and consent of the majority. Then, regardless of whether or not the people consent to the passage of these laws, the government has the ability to punish those who do not obey them.
Is that an accurate description of the state of affairs in this country so far?
From a purely legal standpoint the Constitution is a law; written by the people granting, or delegating certain powers to men of their choosing to act as their servants. In 1866 the Supreme Court of the United States affirmed that fact that the Constitution is, in fact, a law and that it is binding both upon the government, and the people, “”The Constitution of the United States is a law for rulers and people, equally in war and in peace, and covers with the shield of its protection all classes of men, at all times, and under all circumstances. No doctrine, involving more pernicious consequences, was ever invented by the wit of men than that any of its provisions can be suspended during any of the great exigencies of government. Such a doctrine leads directly to anarchy or despotism.” (Source: Ex parte Milligan)
But is the Constitution a law that retains its authority forever, or was it a contract, a charter between those who lived in 1789; the authority of which expired upon the death of those who agreed to it?
There is a legal maxim that states for any contract to be binding upon all parties, all parties involved must sign it. Did you sign the Constitution; revalidating the authority of this entity we call government to pass laws telling you how to live your lives? I certainly didn’t.
There is another legal maxim which states that whenever the terms of any contract are violated by any of the parties consenting to it, the entire contract becomes null and void.
It is my belief that the Constitution was a contract entered into by the people of the 13 States of America to form a system of government for certain specific purposes, and delegated with certain specific powers. I believe that they hoped that this system of government would remain true to its intended purposes, and that if it did that posterity would revalidate the contract and keep the system they had created.
But no man or group of men, have the authority to bind their posterity to a system which they no longer want to be bound to. If our Founders did not believe that fundamental principle they would NEVER have risen up to shake off the yoke of tyranny being imposed upon them by Great Britain.
Thomas Paine said it best when he wrote, “There never did, there never will, and there never can, exist a Parliament, or any description of men, or any generation of men, in any country, possessed of the right or the power of binding and controlling posterity to the “end of time,” or of commanding for ever how the world shall be governed, or who shall govern it.”
If you believe in the idea of freedom and liberty then you understand that no man has the right to bind another against their will; to say otherwise is to admit that you believe in the idea of slavery. As each individual is equally free, no man, or group of men, can join together and oppress another group of men; for that would be slavery and subjugation as well.
The fact that a group of men goes by the name GOVERNMENT does not diminish the fact that if it enacts rules that violate the freedom of a single individual, that entity is tyrannical and oppressive.
They claim to be our servants, yet they are without any control over their actions. We cannot punish them if they violate the law which delegates to them any authority to govern. Patrick Henry feared this aspect of the Constitution, stating, “But in this, there is no real actual punishment for the grossest maladministration. They may go without punishment, though they commit the most outrageous violation on our immunities. That paper may tell me they will be punished. I ask, by what law? They must make the law — for there is no existing law to do it. What — will they make a law to punish themselves? This, Sir, is my great objection to the Constitution, that there is no true responsibility — and that the preservation of our liberty depends on the single chance of men being virtuous enough to make laws to punish themselves.”
Lysander Spooner discussed that aspect of the Constitution nearly a century later, “But these men who claim and exercise this absolute and irresponsible dominion over us, dare not be consistent, and claim either to be our masters, or to own us as property. They say they are only our servants, agents, attorneys, and representatives. But this declaration involves an absurdity, a contradiction. No man can be my servant, agent, attorney, or representative, and be, at the same time, uncontrollable by me, and irresponsible to me for his acts.”
You would think people having any intelligence would begin to question the wisdom of having a system of government in which the masters are incapable of punishing the servants for the violation of the restrictions imposed upon their actions.
In the Declaration of Independence Thomas Jefferson wrote that government derives its consent from the governed. If you believe that just because an entity exercises authority over others simply because it has been elected by a majority of the people, or because it goes by the name GOVERNMENT, then you are denying the fact that there may be those who do not consent to having their lives regulated and taxed by an entity they did not consent to.
To say that we must consent to this government because a bunch of old dead guys agreed to it 230 years ago is to say that we must remain slaves to them and their vision for what kind of country America should be. Are we not free to make our own choices, or did we lose that freedom the moment the Constitution was ratified?
I want you to read something that pretty much describes how I feel about our existing government, and the document people claim to believe gives that government any authority to act in our stead, “If any considerable number of the people believe the Constitution to be good, why do they not sign it themselves, and make laws for, and administer them upon, each other; leaving all other persons (who do not interfere with them) in peace? Until they have tried the experiment for themselves, how can they have the face to impose the Constitution upon, or even to recommend it to, others? Plainly the reason for such absurd and inconsistent conduct is that they want the Constitution, not solely for any honest or legitimate use it can be of to themselves or others, but for the dishonest and illegitimate power it gives them over the persons and properties of others. But for this latter reason, all their eulogiums on the Constitution, all their exhortations, and all their expenditures of money and blood to sustain it, would be wanting.” (My emphasis)
If you truly believe in freedom, then I should be free to choose whether or not to give my consent to a system that steals my income through taxation and imposes thousands of tiny rules and regulations that restrict my freedom. If you feel that simply because a majority of the people support this system, or are too ignorant or afraid to oppose it, that everyone must obey the laws and pay the taxes this government enacts, you are saying that you believe it is acceptable for one segment of society to subjugate and oppress another.
All I want is to be free to live my life according to the dictates of my heart, so long as in so doing I do not harm another, or restrict their freedom. Is that too much to ask? Why must I submit to a system that enslaves me simply because you are too ignorant or stupid to resist the tyranny it imposes upon you? In closing I would like to share a graphic my friend Gill Saunders posted to Facebook.