The Constitutions Part III
Part I: The people were “not a party” and opposed the Constitution for United States.
Part II: Speaks of the fundamental difference between free self government and less than free government by contract.
Is the Constitution Constitutional?
Many claim modern government is unconstitutional or acts unconstitutionally. It is easy to assume that the institutions and activities of the present governing powers are in violation of that originating document and undoubtedly it is from time to time.
A great deal of the turmoil and confusion can be put to rest with a closer look at the Constitution. What did it actually create and by whom and by what means was it established?
We have seen that the people were not a party to it, and we have also seen that the people openly opposed and objected to it. The states did not have the power of the King which had already become limited and questionable even before the Declaration of Independence because of the charters, deeds and sacrifice of the people for centuries in this new land.
What authority did the States have to ratify the Constitution? There were rules for the ratification of the Constitution which had been set forth by those who had already signed it. Those men meeting in secret had no more authority to sign such a document into law for Americans than the average man on the street. They had already far exceeded their commission from the states by even drafting such a document.
The States owed their existence to their own varied history, charters, compacts, and the Articles of Confederation. The Articles of Confederation were an agreement between the States made in accordance to customary international law. They also had limited agreements between the people of varying status in the states.
“The contract makes the law”1
The principle classes of law “when examined as to its different systems it is divided into civil law, common law, canon law... It is also divided into natural law and positive law. Into written law, lex scripta; and unwritten law, lex non scripta. Into law merchant, martial law, municipal law and foreign law.”2
In international law each state was as separate to each other as Mexico is to Canada at least with “respect to their municipal laws and foreign law.”3 Any violation of that original contract between those separate States would be a breaking of the Law of Nations.
Pacta servanda sunt. Agreements must be kept.
Samuel Adams stated, in August of 1776, “Our Union is complete; our constitution composed, established, and approved. You are now the guardians of your own liberties.” Constitutions are not always in writing. “For the most part the English Constitution is unwritten.”4
“A constitution is a body of precepts the purpose of which is to control governmental action until modified in some authorized manner.”5
If a constitution is created in an unauthorized manner it is in reality a revolution.
“If a constitution expressly provides that it may be amended only in a certain way and another way followed, such an attempted amendment is illegal; but if it is acquiesced in it becomes effective as a peaceful revolution such as took place when the United States Constitution took effect upon the ratification by nine states in spite of the fact that the old Articles of Confederation provided that they should not be amended without unanimous consent of the States.”6
If the Constitution was a revolution who was revolting? And against whom or what were they revolting? Every state contained a formidable opposition to the Constitution. North Carolina and Rhode Island prevented lawful ratification. The spirit of the Federalists and their backers literally forced compliance there.
Individualism, in the hearts of a people who had carved out a place for liberty in this wilderness, was root of the tree of opposition. Resistance against the Constitution was so entrenched that war seemed likely.
On July 4, 1788 Judge William West and members of the Country Party marched into Providence, Rhode Island with more than a 1,000 armed anti-federalists.
Let us add one more ingredient to this stew of thought. If the Declaration of Independence was signed and communicated to the world because of the “long train of abuses and usurpation” of the King and his “history of repeated injuries and usurpation” then it seems that it was the King who was revolting against the People of America not the other way around as we are commonly taught.
So, what was the real American revolution? Was it the constitution itself? And what was the constitution revolting against? Was it revolting against the lawful representatives of a government of the people? Were there powers and men encouraging them and even coercing them to break their pact of agreement with the people?
I say “lawful representatives” because each of those States were only republics. They were republics of a much purer nature than is seen today anywhere. Very little power was in the hands of the instituted legislative bodies and titular leaders. The real civil power was in the hands of the individual freeman. They could not rule over their neighbor but were free to rule over themselves.
Duplicity in Federalism
Ignorance and vanity tempered with apathy and avarice are the greatest allies to tyranny. What is the authority that makes the Constitution of the United States and the Federal government created by it? What allows the Federal government the right to claim itself the supreme power which merely allows the people a liberty subject to its power to “define the moral, political, and legal character of their lives”?7
Could the Constitution alone create a national government?
The “states unanimously rejected the recommendation of a national government, and by excluding the word national from all their credentials, demonstrated that they well understood the wide difference between a federal and a national union.”8
A nation is a people and a national government is established directly by the people. Any attempt to create a national government would fall subject to the natural rights of the people. People could invest their rights in a national government, or their children’s rights but they could not vest their neighbor’s rights.
We have seen from several sources that the creation of the federal government was not put to the people, nor was it considered national by the states.9 Although “... it was contended in the convention that the creation of a federal government, although the old Congress never made the discovery, revoked the declaration of independence, and reduced the states to corporations.”10
The separation of the individual states from the union was their right. This was not seriously contested in the Civil War. It was their attempt to leave the Union taking Federal property that brought the conflict to its bloody outcome. This is a precept that should be carefully weighed by every individual who wishes to shed his Federal mantel today.
Because of constructive and direct waivers by the states it has become common to hear the once sovereign states referred to as only “quasi sovereign.” The states were States and contained an element of sovereignty, but as republics the real power or the potential for power remained with the people who would take the trouble to retain it.
If the United States government is a national government now then the question must be asked - did the people make this choice by careful reasoning, calm debate and contemplated conclusions, or was it created by constructions in word or deed?
“When all government, in little as in great things, shall be drawn to Washington as the Center of all Power, it will render powerless the checks provided of one government on another and will become as venal and oppressive as the government from which we separated.”11
This fear voiced by Jefferson almost 200 years ago that Federalism would become venal and oppressive was well founded but is it usurpation? In the United States, today, the Federal government claims a supreme power over, “States, local government private associations, neighborhoods, families, and individuals”12 There is no one who does not feel the effect of federal power upon their lives. The present is a product of the past and we and the fathers who came before us have duplicity in its creation.
“Government is not reason. It is not eloquence. Government is force; like fire it is a dangerous servant—and a fearful master.” attributed, George Washington, 1797.
Men kindle the fires of government when they grant it power for whatever purpose. The more responsibilities people bestow upon its agency the more fuel they put at its disposal. The breath of tyrants merely fans the flames sorely tempted by the weakness and wantonness of we the people.
The New King George
Mere agencies of the federal government may now limit the policy making discretion of States and local governments.13 Their power reaches into every corner of man’s once free state.
“We must realize that today’s Establishment is the new George III. Whether it will continue to adhere to his tactics, we do not know. If it does, the redress, honored in tradition, is also revolution… the truth is that the vast bureaucracy now runs this country, irrespective of wha