‘State Resistance To Rogue Post-Constitutional Federal Government: The Last Best Hope’ – A Clarion Call
There are a growing number of us on the Right who believe that any hope we have of achieving success in restoring our freedoms and liberties now rests in the Several States. You can scan the right side of The Ether and you will find many posts on the subject.
Until now, we have not had a single statement that we can rally around — a manifesto suitable to introduce the subject to others — ‘to place before mankind the common sense of the subject, in terms so plain and firm as to command their assent’.
Jeff Goldstein has, today, provided just such a declaration in a magnificent essay over at his site, Protein Wisdom.
Here are a few highlights to give you a flavor of his arguments:
You’ve read me make this argument several times now, but let me repeat it yet again: the way to reestablish first principles is, quite simply, by reestablishing fidelity to the Constitution; and the way to reestablish fidelity to the Constitution is both to follow it as it was written and to acknowledge its clear intentions, both on the macro and micro levels: the Constitution provides the framework for levels of government, providing the federal government with certain clearly defined enumerated powers, with the rest being left to the states and the we the people, all while creating a system of checks and balances and messy adversarial battles with an implied judicial review — that latter of which can only function as intended should the judiciary adopt as its interpretive methodology any cast of originalism/intentionalism that seeks, in those instances where the Constitution itself is not abundantly clear, to determine what was in fact meant by those who wrote and then passed legislation, weighing it against the corporate intent, that is, the common understanding of what the Constitution proposed by those who agreed to ratify it (which, for instance, would de-problematize the 2nd Amendment), in order to determine a law’s Constitutionality. To this end, I’ve suggested that states — particularly those states with strong conservative governors and majority GOP state legislatures or assemblies — begin resisting federal and bureaucratic laws and mandates that fall outside the clear purview of the central government as laid out in the Constitution itself. That is, resist those laws and mandates that the federal government has no facial authority to issue or impose — regardless of what some robed philosopher kings bent on creating new law sui generis attempt to foist upon the owners of the government, we the people, either out of some commitment to “social justice,” some clever application of unrelated precedent, or some re-writing of the law in order to maintain a veneer of political impartiality (and yes, CJ Roberts, I’m looking at your pompous ass).
But this reality, that many so-called conservative governors succumb to the siren call of federal largess (and we’ve seen six so far cave on ObamaCare’s Medicaid expansion, at the expense of their own constituencies, who down the road will be unduly burdened by the costs they’ll be required to bear), is not a reason to suggest that the strategy of state resistance is a losing one. Instead, it’s an argument for creating litmus tests for future gubernatorial candidates, mayoral candidates, and local municipal officials — and a clarion call for defeating incumbents who would trade away their state sovereignty, at the expense of the citizenry who elected them to power, for federal money and the release of pressure that comes from the media once they’ve surrendered principle and succumbed to the leftist paradigm.
This, along with a full-throated campaign against the legacy media, the aim of which should be to circumvent the propaganda arm of statist government and reach low-information voters to let them know how their liberties are being systematically usurped, is what the long-term strategy of the TEA Party needs to look like: states will follow the Constitution, and if that means defying a federal government or a judiciary that will not, then resist we much.
Either we’re serious about fixing the last best hope for freedom or we’re not. Our options are limited. But such is the case when the government becomes professionalized and begins to concern itself with its own interests rather than the interests of the people. When virtue is removed from government — when elected and appointed officials grant themselves the power to work in concert to circumvent the Constitution when it fits their needs, then to hide behind it when they require its protections — then the rule of law is selectively enforced and, consequently, [is] invalidated.
The time has come to act – we know this. The question has been ‘How?’. I think Jeff Goldstein has provided the best answer.
Please direct anyone you can think of to Jeff’s essay.
It is a call to arms, a ringing of the bell of Liberty — are you listening?
Resistentiam Tyrannis nunc.
Resistentiam Tyrannis saecula.
Resistance to Tyranny now.
Resistance to Tyranny forever.