Tiller The Dead Baby-Killer

31 01 2010

 I have to admit with sympathizing with Mr. Roeder, but I also condemn him for killing Dr. Tiller. This leaves me, for the first time in my life having to admit to being a fence sitter. Some people will read my words and condemn me for speaking truthfully, but I don’t care. This is a subject that concerns me deeply. We have been killing millions of babies in this country for over 30 years and its about time we lived-up to what we have allowed and ask for forgiveness. But we must FIRST STOP KILLING THE BABIES!

There is a part of me that really understands why Tiller was murdered in cold-blood. What he did for a living was pure evil, and him attending a Church makes no difference. Going to Church may have made him feel better, but I would bet my life that God sent him straight to hell when he died. As well he should have. I honestly don’t know what my decision would have been if had been on the jury.

That’s my two cents, for what its worth.

Gio-

KANSAS CITY (Reuters) – A man accused of gunning down one of America’s few late-term abortion providers was found guilty of first-degree murder on Friday after he said he had to act to stop the doctor from performing more abortions.

U.S.

Scott Roeder, 51, was convicted of first-degree murder and aggravated assault by a Wichita, Kansas jury which deliberated for just over 30 minutes. The case attracted anti-abortion protesters from around the nation to support Roeder.

Abortion has been one of America’s most contentious and divisive issues for decades, affecting everything from local and national elections to the selection of U.S. Supreme Court justices.

Roeder admitted he stalked and shot to death Dr. George Tiller, 67, on May 31 last year as Tiller attended church in Wichita, Kansas. He argued in court his actions were necessary to protect unborn babies.

“Abortions were being done every day,” Roeder testified. “My honest belief was that if I didn’t do something they would continue to die.”

Roeder’s sentencing was set for March 9. District Attorney Nola Foulston will seek a “hard 50” mandatory life sentence, under which Roeder will have to serve 50 years in prison before becoming eligible for parole.

Tiller was long a top target of anti-abortion activists and had been shot and wounded before. He was one of only a few U.S. physicians willing to perform abortions late in pregnancy.

The doctor’s death intensified the abortion debate and the actions taken by people who want it to be illegal. Abortion was legalized in a landmark 1973 U.S. Supreme Court decision.

“While this verdict will not bring back Dr. Tiller it was very important that justice was served,” said Vicki Saporta, president of pro-abortion group the National Abortion Federation, speaking from the courthouse in Wichita.

ABORTION ACTIVISTS

“It was important for other abortion providers and it was important for ensuring the ability of women to obtain quality abortion care.”

Anti-abortion activists had hoped the trial might result in a verdict of voluntary manslaughter, while abortion rights groups feared any verdict other than a first-degree murder conviction would encourage further violence against abortion providers.

Abortion rights supporters have called on federal authorities to press an investigation into a larger conspiracy by anti-abortion activists to commit violent acts against abortion providers.

Anti-abortion activists from around America, including the founder of the prominent anti-abortion group Operation Rescue Randall Terry, flocked to Wichita to defend Roeder’s actions.

Some protesters held signs opposing abortion and supporting Roeder outside the courthouse and held press conferences referring to Tiller as a murderer himself.

Other anti-abortion groups, however, distanced themselves from violence against abortion providers.

Cheryl Sullenger of Operation Rescue, which Terry led until 1991, reiterated the group’s denunciation of Dr. Tiller’s murder, but said the organization had no further comment.

“There is no justification for this murder,” said Ann Scheidler, vice president of the Pro-Life Action League, which had been trying to shut down Dr. Tiller’s operations via the courts prior to his death. “The vast majority of pro-life activists are peaceful, law abiding people.”

“Mr. Roeder’s actions were very selfish and un-Christian and we have to pay the price for them,” she added.

(Editing by David Storey)

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Hell Hath No Fury Like A Party Scorned

30 01 2010

This little dust-up between Obama and the Republicans at some GOP retreat earlier today was interesting on a few levels. I’m only going to write about the ones that interested me. Why? It’s my blog. Ok, I won’t be a smart-ass any longer, than I normally am. 😉

One of the most fascinating items that nobody wants to talk about has to do with the blatant lying Obama gets away with on what seems to be a daily basis. In the article below, it tells how he stated categorically and with conviction… “I am not an ideologue”. That one statement is a flat-out all American lie! He knows it, all the Republicans in attendance know it, his administration knows it. Hell, even people that voted for him and still support him, know he lied. So what does everyopne do about it?  Nothing.

If you were to take a few minutes of your time to go to the HuffPo and find the thread on this subject (not him lying, him at the meeting), you would find an energized HP base. Why? Because according to his people, Obama kicked the GOP’s butt! That’s their lie so they can live with it, but how do they manage to leave out the fact that their Holy-like can-do-no-wrong president lie right to their faces? I hate the guy and I would like to know!

Obama also lied about the GOP derailing his healthcare overhaul. The simple truth is… the president and the Democrats had all the votes they needed for the last 12 months. The GOP could have stayed home the entire time because their votes would not have mattered. E-X-C-E-P-T for one tiny detail… Obama knew that THE PEOPLE did not want this bill, and he wanted the GOP to share the blame when it got passed and THE PEOPLE started to hit the streets with pitchforks in hand. Even with other problems this bill would have caused politically, it was all on the Democrats and they were to Chicken to take the blame. The Dems are the ones that screwed the president, not the GOP, and he damn well knows it. So much crappola, so little time.

It’s going to be funny to see how this whole thing is spun by Monday morning. Below is a quicky account of what went on. Have fun!

Gio-

Obama faces off with fiercest critics: House Republicans

The president’s appearance at a GOP conference in Baltimore devolves into finger-pointing and gamesmanship.

Reporting from Baltimore – In an unprecedented town hall meeting, President Obama went toe-to-toe Friday with some of his fiercest critics — a ballroom-full of House Republicans — accusing them of derailing his healthcare overhaul while they complained about being shut out of the political process.

The president’s appearance at an annual retreat for House Republicans was intended to be a gesture of bipartisanship. Instead, it devolved into a respectful, but still surprisingly blunt exercise in political finger-pointing, defensiveness and gamesmanship.

Obama repeatedly defended his policies and accused Republicans of distorting his positions for political gain. He was especially critical of the GOP’s efforts to derail the healthcare overhaul bill in Congress.

“You’d think this was some Bolshevik plot,” Obama said. “That’s how some of you guys presented this.”

And he argued that constant political attacks on his agenda had almost robbed the GOP of any opportunity to contribute.

“What happens is that you guys don’t have a lot of room to negotiate with me,” Obama said. “The fact of the matter is, many of you, if you voted with the administration on something, are politically vulnerable in your own base, in your own party . . . because what you’ve been telling your constituents is, ‘This guy’s doing all kinds of crazy stuff that’s going to destroy America.’ ”

The event was notable for its departure from the norms of the American political process, resembling more the British tradition of a leader taking fire from members of the opposition party — and for the fact that it was broadcast nationally.

Like an audience does on a daytime talk show, the GOP members held microphones and questioned Obama. The president answered from behind a podium, his image displayed on large TV screens. The exchange went for 90 minutes — longer than scheduled.

“I’m having fun,” Obama said at one point.

For the most part, the Republicans held their tongues and praised the president for listening to their concerns. But when Obama maintained that “I am not an ideologue,” murmurs of dissent could be heard throughout the room.

“I’m not,” he repeated.

House Republicans, who have little political power because of the large Democratic majority in the chamber, were determined to use the occasion to rebut skeptics who argue that the GOP offers few ideas and opposes legislation out of political convenience, not principle. They handed Obama a thick document with Republican policy proposals when he was introduced at the event.

Rep. Mike Pence of Indiana, part of the GOP leadership in the House, said before the session that his party needed to show voters that “we’re ready to govern again” in advance of congressional elections this fall.

The president began by urging bipartisanship and cooperation in a manner similar to his State of the Union address Wednesday night. “I don’t believe the American people want us to focus on our job security. They want us to focus on their job security,” Obama said to a loud ovation.

Soon, however, bolstered by Friday’s news of a jump in the nation’s gross domestic product, Obama took the audience to task for opposing his economic stimulus plan a year ago, arguing that it contained the kind of tax breaks that the GOP typically advocates. And he accused lawmakers who opposed the stimulus of taking credit in their home districts for projects that benefited from the stimulus money.

“Let’s face it,” he said, “some of you have been at the ribbon-cuttings of some of these important projects in your communities.”

He was pressed by freshman Rep. Jason Chaffetz of Utah on why Obama had not followed through on his pledge that healthcare negotiations would be broadcast on TV. Obama argued that most of the debate had in fact been aired, except for some of the talks close to the Senate vote.

“That was a messy process,” Obama said. “I take responsibility.”

Near the end of the session, the president pushed back firmly at Texas Rep. Jeb Hensarling’s insistence that the administration had dramatically inflated the nation’s budget deficit. “That whole question was structured as a talking point for running a campaign,” Obama charged, cutting off Hensarling in mid-sentence.

Though some in the room compared the scene to the Biblical tale of Daniel entering the lion’s den, the outcome was less transformative. Republicans did not leave the room purring like kittens, and some were dismissive of the president’s attempt to engage them.

“A few times, I thought the furniture was going to float in the air,” said Rep. Trent Franks of Arizona. “I think the man is a good speaker. His speeches are a little unconnected to the real facts on the ground.”

Rep. Phil Gingrey of Georgia lauded Obama for making the trip but said that he had adopted an overly defensive and lecturing tone.

“I think the president could be a little more diplomatic,” Gingrey said. “The president reacts a little too much.”

The House Republican leader, Rep. John A. Boehner of Ohio, was more effusive after the exchange. “I thought the dialogue went very well,” Boehner said. “We want to continue to find common ground.”

joliphant@latimes.com

// Copyright © 2010, The Los Angeles Times





Capitalism Is Evil?

29 01 2010

I don’t believe I’m about to do a posting on M. Moore and his latest dumb movie, but here I am…

While reading this I got a strange feeling that Moore would make a good Conservative if he made a few adjustments. Then I got to the part where he calls Capitalism evil and I gave up hope. However, there are a couple of his thoughts that are a part of his latest movie, that leads one to think that he understands Conservatives. You will see what I mean as you read this. Unfortunately Moore falls in love with a speech that was recorded, but never released to the public, by F.D.R. a week or two prior to him dying. This speech was made by a man that was probably very high on medications when he gave this never-before-seen-nor-heard-of speech. F.D.R. basically wanted to promise all Americans a Utopia-like existence, which is why I think he was high as a kite when he recorded this speech.

Enjoy this little piece, but please don’t go and pay to see M. Moores new movie. Remember… he hates money!

Gio-

‘Capitalism is evil … you have to eliminate it’

After guns and the Iraq war, Michael Moore is now taking on an entire political and economic system in his latest documentary, Capitalism: A Love Story. So what message does the man who once planned to become a priest have?

Michael Moore has been accused of many things. Mendacity. Manipulation. Rampant egotism. Bullying a frail old man with Alzheimer’s. And that is by people who generally agree with his views. His latest film Capitalism: A Love Story is already out in the US when we meet. He comes storming down the hotel corridor, predictably unkempt in ragged jeans that have the unusual quality of appearing both too large and too small at the same time.

I wasn’t sure what to expect. Arrogance, perhaps. Cynicism. But he begins to schmooze while he’s still some distance away, shouting he feels he knows me. A few months ago one of Moore’s producers interviewed me for the film. I was cut from the finished version but Moore says he watched my every word.

Settled on a couch I ask why he hasn’t managed to persuade the downtrodden, uninsured, exploited masses to revolt. “My films don’t have instant impact because they’re dense with ideas that people have not thought about,” he says. “It takes a while for the American public to wrap its head around some of the things I’m saying. Twenty years ago I told them that General Motors was going to collapse and take a lot of towns down with them. I was ridiculed, and GM sent around this packet of information about me, my past writings – pinko! With Bowling for Columbine, I told people that these shootings are going to continue, we’ve got too many guns, too easy access to the guns. [In Fahrenheit 9/11] I’m telling people that we’re not going to find weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, we’ve been lied to.”

Capitalism: A Love Story seems the natural culmination of all his others, an overarching look at the insidious control of Wall Street and corporate interests over politics and lives. Its timing is exquisite, coming in the wake of the biggest financial collapse in living memory. And once again Moore is bracing himself: as the film drew to a close at its premiere in Los Angeles, he posted a message on Twitter: “The packed house gets up to grab their torches and pitchforks …”

The film is certainly shocking. Early on, Moore sets out the meaning of “Dead Peasants” insurance. It turns out that Wal-Mart, a company with a revenue larger than any other in the world, bets on its workers dying, taking out life insurance policies on its 350,000 shop-floor workers without their knowledge or approval. When one of them dies, Wal-Mart claims on the policy. Not a cent of the payout, which sometimes runs to a $1m (£620,000) or more, goes to the family of the dead worker, often struggling with expensive funeral bills. Wal-Mart keeps the lot. If a worker dies, the company profits.

Wal-Mart is not alone. Moore talks to a woman whose husband died of brain cancer in 2008. He worked at a bank until it fired him because he was sick. But the bank retained a life insurance policy on the unfortunate man and cashed it in for $4.7m (£2.9m) when he died. There were gasps from the audience in a Washington cinema at that.

They came again as Moore focused on the eviction of the foreclosed. The Hacker family of Peoria filmed themselves being chucked out of their home because of skyrocketing mortgage payments. Randy Hacker, gun owner, observes that he can understand why someone might want to shoot up a bank. In a final twist, the eviction squad offers the Hackers cash to clear out their yard.

The Hackers are Republicans. So was the widow of the bank worker. It is the gap, between the ordinary American – Democrat or Republican, middle-class or dirt-poor – and predatory banks and mammoth corporations that Moore has made his target ever since Roger and Me, his first film, set out to expose the damage wreaked by General Motors on his hometown of Flint, Michigan.

“One movie maybe can’t make a difference,” Moore says. “I’ll say, what’s the point of this? What do I want [my audiences] to do? Obviously I want them to be engaged in their democracy. I want them to get off the bench and become active.”

Last summer something happened that renewed Moore’s conviction that his film-making was politically worthwhile. “I’m in the edit room and there’s Bill Moyers on the TV interviewing the vice-president of Sigma health insurance. Massive, billion-dollar company. He’s sitting there, telling the country that he’s quit his job and he wants to come clean. That he and the other health insurance companies got together and pooled their resources to smear me and the film Sicko to try and stop people from going to see it because, as he said, everything Michael Moore said in Sicko was true, and we were afraid this film would be a tipping point.

“I came away from that, with ‘Wow, they’re afraid of this movie, they believe it can actually create a revolution.’ The idea that cinema can be dangerous is a great idea.”

Moore’s critics would argue this is his ego speaking. The idea that his film about the failings of the US healthcare system was on the brink of prompting a revolution of any kind looks all the more far-fetched given how the political fight over the issue has panned out. But if Moore’s primary intention is to send up a warning flare, to alert Americans to what is going on in their country but not usually reported, he’s been pretty successful.

At the end of Capitalism: A Love Story, Moore makes a pronouncement: “Capitalism is an evil, and you cannot regulate evil. You have to eliminate it and replace it with something that is good for all people and that something is democracy.” Michael Moore once planned to be a priest. In his youth he was drawn to the Berrigan brothers, a pair of radical priests who pulled anti-Vietnam war stunts such as pouring blood on military service records. In an instructive moment for Moore, the brothers made clear they weren’t just protesting against the war, but against religious organisations that kept silent about it.

These days he disagrees with Catholic orthodoxy exactly where you would expect him to – he supports abortion rights and gay marriage – but he credits his Catholic upbringing with instilling in him a sense of social justice, and an activism tinged with theatre that lives on his films.

But what does it mean, to replace capitalism with democracy? He sighs and tries to explain. In the old Soviet bloc, he says, communism was the political system and socialism the economic. But with capitalism, he complains, you get political and economic rolled in to one. Big business buys votes in Congress. Lobbyists write laws. The result is that the US political system is awash in capitalist money that has stripped the system of much of its democratic accountability.

“What I’m asking for is a new economic order,” he says. “I don’t know how to construct that. I’m not an economist. All I ask is that it have two organising principles. Number one, that the economy is run democratically. In other words, the people have a say in how its run, not just the 1%. And number two, that it has an ethical and moral core to it. That nothing is done without considering the ethical nature, no business decision is made without first asking the question, is this for the common good?”

These days Moore, the son of a Flint car worker, lives in the smalltown surrounds of Traverse City with his wife Kathleen Glynn and stepdaughter Natalie, a four-hour drive and a world away from where he came from. But Traverse City, which is on Lake Michigan, has endured its own decline. Walking along the restored foreshore, a sign says that the city was once a major lumber exporter. Now it is known as the “Cherry Capital” of America.

“When I first got here the theatre was boarded up,” says Moore. “It was a mess. I said, look, let me reopen this theatre, I’ll create a non-profit. It has brought, like, half a million people downtown in the first two years. If they’re downtown they go out to dinner, they go to the bookstore. It livens everything up. Stores open. Now there’s no plywood on any windows.” This, says Moore, has made him something of a local hero even in a town that votes Republican.

“The county voted for McCain and for Bush twice. But not a day goes by when a Republican here doesn’t stop me on the street and shake my hand and thank me. Me, the pariah!”

There are conservatives who get Moore’s message, particularly families such as the Hackers who have been betrayed by the system they thought was working for them. But identifying their suffering, and even the cause of their problems, is very different from persuading them that capitalism is evil, although they might just buy in to what Moore says is the core message of his latest film – “that Wall Street and the banks are truly the enemy, and we need to tie that beast down and quick”.

His enemies in the rightwing media will be doing everything they can to ensure this doesn’t happen, portraying him as a propagandist. And even some of his supporters say he is too willing to leave out inconvenient facts. But there’s no denying some very powerful truths in Capitalism, one of which is that it didn’t need to be this way in America.

Moore has dug out of a South Carolina archive a piece of film buried away 66 years ago because it threatened to rock the foundations of the capitalist system as Americans now know it.

President Franklin D Roosevelt was ailing. Too ill to make his 1944 state of the nation address to Congress, he instead broadcast it by radio. But at one point he called in the cameras, and set out his vision of a new America he knew he would not live to see.

Roosevelt proposed a second bill of rights to guarantee every American a job with a living wage, a decent home, medical care, protection from the economic fears of old age, sickness and unemployment, and, perhaps most dangerously for big business, freedom from unfair monopolies. He said that “true individual freedom cannot exist without economic security and independence”.

The film was quickly locked away.

“The next week on the newsreels – and we’ve gone back and researched this – they didn’t run that,” said Moore. “They talked about other parts of his speech, the war. Nothing about this. The footage became lost. When we called the Roosevelt presidential library and asked them about it they said it wasn’t filmed. His own family told us it wasn’t filmed.” Moore’s team scoured the country without luck until they were given a tip about a collector connected to the university of South Carolina.

The university didn’t have anything archived under FDR’s speeches that fitted, but there were a couple of boxes from that week in 1944.

“We pop it in. It was all there. We had tears in our eyes watching it. For 65 years not a single American saw that speech, not one. I decided right then that we’re going to fulfil Roosevelt’s wishes that the American people see him saying this. Of all the things in the film, probably I feel most privileged that I get to share this. I get to give him his stage.” It’s a powerful moment not only because it offers an alternative view of American values rarely spoken of today – almost all of which would be condemned as rampant socialism – but also an interesting reference point with which to compare the more restrained ambitions of the Obama administration.

It is hard to imagine any circumstances in which Obama could put forward such an agenda, I suggest. Moore disagrees.

“He could make that speech.”

And survive politically?

“He has told people he’s going to operate these four years not with an eye on getting re-elected but on getting things done. I have been very happy for the last year. We came out of eight dark years and his election was – what’s the word? – the relief I felt that night, I’ve been filled with hope since then. Now my patience is running a bit thin. He hasn’t taken the reins and said: I’m in charge here, this is what we’re doing. Do it. I can understand he’s afraid but he’s gotta do it.”

Capitalism: A Love Story is released on 26 February





Giovanni’s World Warning

29 01 2010

Ok gang, the last time we had snow storm in my area we went 4 days without power and I was NOT able to get back online until late on the 4th day. Since it created such havoc the last time, I’m warning you that it could happen again over the next 48 hours. Million of trees came down in our last storm with millions of large partially broken limbs and branches still hanging in there. If the limbs ice-up and then it snows (as predicted) on them we can expect almost a repeat of what happened the last time.

The area in dark purple below is the area that Doc’s Wife and myself live in, so we are expecting the worse. Wish us luck!

Gio-





Our Power And Freedom Are Being Taken

29 01 2010

This is one of those things that we need to pay more attention to. Thank God there are people out there that at least keep up with this stuff. Especially when you consider how important this is to our most basic of rights… FREEDOM!

H/T to FS for keeping me up to date on what’s going one with The Tenth Amendment. 

“The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, norprohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”

************************************

Gio-

Nullification: It’s Official.

by Derek Sheriff

While speaking to a large crowd of over a thousand people on the campus of Arizona State University last December, Congressman Ron Paul mentioned one thing that might come about as the result of the federal government habitually ignoring the Constitution: Nullification.

About five minutes into the video segment which you’ll find below, he said, “There’s not much attention paid to the Constitution in Washington. There’s not much attention paid to it by our executive branch of government. And we don’t get much protection from our courts. So one thing that might finally happen from this if the people finally feel so frustrated that they can’t get the results out of Washington — They’re going to start thinking about options. They might start thinking about nullification and a few things like that.”

As someone who attended that rally and was doing my best to represent my state’s chapter of The Tenth Amendment Center, I know I cheered very loudly and was very pleased when the rest of the crowd applauded enthusiastically.

For anyone who is unfamiliar with the concept of state nullification, it was the idea expressed by then sitting vice president, Thomas Jefferson, when he authored what came to be called the Kentucky Resolutions of 1798. The resolutions made the case that the federal government is a creature of the states and that states have the authority to judge the constitutionality of the federal government’s laws and decrees. He also argued that states should refuse to enforce laws which they deemed unconstitutional.

reclaiming-american-revolutionJames Madison wrote a similar resolution for Virginia that same year, in which he asserted that whenever the federal government exceeds its constitutional limits and begins to oppress the citizens of a state, that state’s legislature is duty bound to interpose its power to prevent the federal government from victimizing its people. Very similar to Jefferson’s concept of nullification, Madison’s doctrine of interposition differed in some small but important ways.

These two documents together came to be known as The Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions (or Resolves), of 1798. Both were written in response to the dreaded Alien and Sedition Acts, and the phrase, “Principles of ‘98″ became shorthand for nullification and / or interposition. Over time, “The Principles of ‘98″ would be invoked by many other states, many times for a variety of issues.

Getting back to Ron Paul’s speech in December at ASU, Congressman Paul qualified his prediction about the revival of nullification by saying the following:

“But my suspicion is that there will never be official nullification or secession, but if the [federal] government continues to fail, and they can’t deliver anything..checks bounce..that we will be forced to take care of ourselves. And we will be forced to almost ignore everything they do.”

Less than a week after the speech I attended at ASU, Congressman Paul was interviewed by Mike Church on his radio show. When Mike asked him what his thoughts were on nullification, Ron Paul responded by saying:

“I think it’s a great idea. It was never really successful in our history. But I think it’s going to grow in importance. And I think it’s going to grow because the government, the federal government will be seen as inept and ineffective. And I think it’ll almost be de facto in the sense that the states will eventually just ignore some of the mandates.”

Here I would like to pause for a moment and point out that I am not usually in the business of disagreeing with Congressman Ron Paul. I would hardly need one hand to count the number of times that I have actually disagreed with him on any issue of real substance. I am a great admirer and supporter of Congressman Paul, who is undoubtedly very supportive of the idea of state nullification, even if he has doubted its efficacy in the past. However, in spite of all this, I would like to make two observations.

First, nullification has, in fact, been somewhat successful in the past and more recently as well. Second, as President Obama loves to say, “Let me be clear”: “Official” nullification has ALREADY HAPPENED.

Before I explain why “official” nullification has already happened, let me briefly give some examples of what nullification is NOT.

Nullification is not secession or insurrection, but neither is it unconditional or unlimited submission. Nullification is not something that requires any decision, statement or action from any branch of the federal government. Nullification is not the result of obtaining a favorable court ruling. Nullification is not the petitioning of the federal government to start doing or to stop doing anything. Nullification doesn’t depend on any federal law being repealed. Nullification does not require permission from any person or institution outside of one’s own state.

So just what IS “official” nullification you might be asking?

Nullification begins with a decision made in your state legislature to resist a federal law deemed to be unconstitutional. It usually involves a bill, which is passed by both houses and is signed by your governor. In some cases, it might be approved by the voters of your state directly, in a referendum. It may change your state’s statutory law or it might even amend your state constitution. It is a refusal on the part of your state government to cooperate with, or enforce any federal law it deems to be unconstitutional.

Nullification carries with it the force of state law. It cannot be legally repealed by Congress without amending the US Constitution. It cannot be lawfully abolished by an executive order. It cannot be overruled by the Supreme Court. It is the people of a state asserting their constitutional rights by acting as a political society in their highest sovereign capacity. It is the moderate, middle way that wisely avoids harsh remedies like secession on the one hand and slavish, unlimited submission on the other. It is the constitutional remedy for unconstitutional federal laws.

With the exception of a Constitutional amendment, the federal government cannot oppose (except perhaps rhetorically), a state’s decision to nullify an unconstitutional federal law without resorting to extra-legal measures. But such measures would more than likely backfire, since most Americans still affirm that might does not make right.

There is no question as to whether or when “official” nullification will happen: It has ALREADY HAPPENED. In fact, not only has it happened recently, it has been a success! Perhaps this is why the federal government hopes you will never hear about it. According to the Tenth Amendment Center:

“25 states over the past 2 years have passed resolutions and binding laws denouncing and refusing to implement the Bush-era law [REAL ID Act]..While the law is still on the books in D.C., its implementation has been “delayed” numerous times in response to this massive state resistance, and in practice, is virtually null and void.”

But that’s not all; another example of “official” nullification has occurred in the form of an unlikely states’ rights ally: Medical marijuana.

There was a time when the federal government took the Constitution seriously enough that Congress did what is required in order to enact a nationwide ban on a substance. Even though the experiment would eventually be seen by most Americans as a mistake and a failure, the 18th Amendment was passed and the era known as “Prohibition” began. Four years later, it was repealed.

When it came to marijuana prohibition, however, the feds had another trick up their sleeve. All three branches of the federal government would agree on a very novel, liberal interpretation of the “commerce clause” which would allow them to regulate virtually any substance, including marijuana, even though there’s supposedly no “legal” commerce in the plant. Since that time, the federal government has managed to claim, with a straight face, as it were, that a plant grown in your back yard, never sold, and never leaving your property, is somehow able to be completely banned by the federal government under the interstate “commerce clause.” The only problem with their claim is that the states just aren’t buying it.

Fourteen states have actively refused to comply with federal laws on marijuana, and it looks as if six more are about to join the effort. In a recent blog post, Mark Kreslins observes:

“..medical marijuana now poses a real threat to the enforcement power of the Federal Government. With state after state defying Washington DC over this issue..Washington DC has a choice to make; enforce their laws based on a very liberal interpretation of the Commerce Clause by sending thousands of DEA agents into all fifty states…or…look the other way. Thus far, they’ve chosen to look the other way for if they create the appearance of a Federal takeover of police powers in the States, they will fully expose their extra-constitutional behavior and provoke a direct confrontation with the States who will use the 10th Amendment (hopefully) to defend their prerogatives.”

Whatever your view may be regarding marijunana use, medical or otherwise, one thing is apparent: “Official” nullification has happened, and it works! Washington will have to get used to it.

What remains to be seen, however, is whether in addition to “officially” nullifying unconstitutional federal laws, state governments will be willing to use their power to “officially” interpose themselves between agents of the federal government and the people of their state. In the unlikely event that one or more branches of the federal government decides to take extra-legal measures to punish residents of a state for exercising their constitutional rights in defiance of unconstitutional federal laws, will that state’s government have the courage to hamper or even neutralize such extra-legal measures?

There are a whole host of peaceful actions that a state government can adopt if that day comes or appears to be just over the horizon. These measures range from county sheriffs requiring that federal agents receive written permission from the sheriff before acting in their county, to setting up a Federal Tax escrow account, which could potentially de-fund unconstitutional federal activities by requiring that all federal taxes come first to the state’s Department of Revenue.

Besides state interposition, the other thing Washington would have to consider, is whether enough of their agents would actually obey orders to punish people for exercising their constitutional rights. There is a significant chance that enough of them would either publicly or privately decide in advance to ignore such orders. As the probability of this increases, it becomes more likely that Washington will not risk overplaying its hand. The reality is that Washington just doesn’t have the manpower to enforce all their unconstitutional laws if enough states choose to defy them.

Of course, it all depends on the people of the several states: ordinary people like you and I. Although I’ve discovered that there are more elected representatives at the state level who are committed to acting in a courageous and principled manner than I ever dared hope, most of their peers lack such a brave commitment. Most of them will stick their head in the sand or sit on the fence until they determine which way the wind is blowing. And so it’s our opinion, not the opinion of the American people in aggregate, but our opinion as citizens of our respective states, that will influence the decision of our state representatives to either stand tall or to kneel down and knuckle under.

But do you even know the men and women who represent you? I’m not talking about those who represent you in Washington, but rather in Phoenix, Salem, Sacramento, Salt Lake City, Denver, Austin, Oklahoma City, Tallahassee, Atlanta, Nashville, Richmond, Harrisburg, Indianapolis, Columbus and Springfield.

If you don’t know them, and you care about our republic, you should make it your highest priority to get to know them and establish rapport with them as soon as possible.

For any of you who really want to preserve our union, and at the same time retain your rights guaranteed by the Bill of Rights, I can’t say it any better than 2008 presidential nominee of the Constitution Party, Chuck Baldwin:

“..it is absolutely obligatory that freedom-minded Americans refocus their attention to electing State legislators, governors, judges and sheriffs who will fearlessly defend their God-given liberties..as plainly and emphatically as I know how to say it, I am telling you: ONLY THE STATES CAN DEFEND OUR LIBERTY NOW! ..this reality means we will have to completely readjust our thinking and priorities.”

Derek Sheriff is an ex-Green Beret turned activist and the State Chapter Coordinator for the Arizona Tenth Amendment Center.

Copyright © 2010 by TenthAmendmentCenter.com. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit is given.





Enemy Of The State

29 01 2010

This is where we are headed…





TGIF Open Thread

29 01 2010

It’s Friday, and the entire day is brought to you by the BIG GUY in the sky and it’s free! Great deal huh?

Ok folks, it’s all yours….

Dang I love this sign!

 

Gio-