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The Cliven Bundy Standoff: Wounded Knee Revisited?

13 Apr

 

We took away their country and their means of support, broke up their mode of living, their habits of life, introduced disease and decay among them, and it was for this and against this they made war. Could anyone expect less? – General Philip Sheridan, who presided over the expropriation of the Plains Indians, in the 1878 Annual Report of the General of the U.S. Army

Following the War Between the States, as the formerly independent South was being re-assimilated into the Soyuz, the US military took up the task of driving the Plains Indians off of land that had been promised to them through solemn treaty obligations – but was now coveted by the corporatist railroad combine.

In 1867, William Sherman wrote a letter to General Grant insisting that “we are not going to let thieving, ragged Indians check and stop the progress” of the railroad. About a year earlier, Sherman had urged Grant to “act with vindictive earnestness against the Sioux, even to their extermination, men, women, and children.” Dr. Thomas DiLorenzo points out that Sherman set out to make the Sioux “feel the superior power of the Government,” even if “the final solution to the Indian problem” required that they be physically annihilated.

Writing in Smithsonian magazine, historian Gilbert King observes that the post-war US military wasn’t adequate to carry out that ambitious campaign. General Philip Sheridan, who succeeded Sherman as Commander of the Military Division of the Mississippi, complained that he had only 14,000 troops with which to carry out “the reduction of these wild tribes and occupation of their country.”

Note that Sheridan didn’t equivocate in describing his army’s role as the occupier of a “country” that belonged, by right, to other people. He had no moral scruples against being an occupier; his objections were limited to practical concerns.

The Plains Indians were canny, elusive, and motivated. However, their dependence on the buffalo provided the aggressors with an exploitable vulnerability. Hunting the Indians was difficult and risky; slaughtering buffalo was neither.

The railroads, acting as a military force multiplier, began ferrying tourists to the West for the specific purpose of “sport-hunting” buffalo.

Unlike the Indians, who never threatened to hunt the buffalo to extinction, or Bill Cody, who was restrained in his efforts to harvest them to feed construction crews for the Kansas Pacific Railroad, the Eastern tourists had no property interest in the continued existence of the species, and didn’t have to pay any price for the profligate destruction they wrought.

“Massive hunting parties began to arrive in the West by train, with thousands of men packing .50 caliber rifles, and leaving a trail of buffalo carnage in their wake,” recalls King. “Hunters began killing buffalo by the hundreds of thousands,” leaving their ravaged bodies to bloat and fester.

When legislatures in some states attempted to enact measures to conserve the buffalo, their objections were overruled by the Feds. The higher “national purpose” required a “total war” strategy that included the destruction of the buffalo in order to break the resistance of the Plains Indians.

“These men have done more in the last two years, and will do more in the next year, to settle the vexed Indian question, than the entire regular army has done in the last forty years,” wrote General Sheridan with satisfaction. “They are destroying the Indians’ commissary. And it is a well-known fact that an army losing its base of supplies is placed at a great disadvantage. Send them [the private buffalo hunters] powder and lead, if you will; but for a lasting peace, let them kill, skin and sell until the buffaloes are exterminated. Then your prairies can be covered with speckled cattle.”

Cattle became the successor to buffalo in the late 1860s and early 1870s. That was the era when the ancestors of Cliven Bundy settled in what was to become the State of Nevada, and began to graze cattle in what would later be called the Bunkerville Grazing Allotment. The Bundy family made peaceful and productive use of that allotment for more than 120 years, mixing their labor with the land to create original wealth.

Unfortunately, the Bundy family — like the American Indians – had been living on a reservation: They were never allowed to exercise ownership of their grazing “allotment,” in much the same way that Indians were not permitted to have clear title to their lands. The land on which the Bundy family raised cattle was “owned” by the government, and the Bundys were required to pay rent – in the form of grazing fees – for the “privilege” of making productive use of it. The public-land grazing system has been described as “the nation’s most conspicuous and extensive flirtation with socialism” – except, perhaps, for the Indian Reservation System.

Indians whose lands were supposedly protected through treaties invariably discovered that the phrase “in perpetuity” means “pending the discovery of something valuable on the land that is desired by a politically favored constituency.” The desired commodity could be gold – as the Nez Perce learned after their homeland in the luxuriant Wallowa Valley, having been reduced to a tiny, barren tract, was seized from them by General O.O. Howard.  It could be fertile farm lands on the banks of the Niobrara River, as the Poncas discovered when they were forcibly relocated to Oklahoma.

Similar “adjustments” were made to practically every Indian band or tribe that signed a treaty in good faith with Washington – only to find themselves reduced to destitution when Washington withheld promised annuities and rations, and then evicted from their lands when it suited Leviathan’s interests. The high and holy purpose of Manifest Destiny nullified the property rights of Indians and any treaty obligations that would inhibit Washington’s drive for continental expansion.

In 1993, the same federal Leviathan State that unilaterally “modified” binding treaty agreements with Indian tribes and bands decided to “modify” the terms of the Bundy family’s grazing permit. This was done in the service of a doctrine even more insidious than Manifest Destiny: A new religion in which all human property rights – including, some adherents insist, the right to live itself – are to be sacrificed on the altar of “biocentrism.” The central tenet of that religion is that “Human beings are not inherently superior to other living things.”

However, there are certain superior specimens within the ranks of humanity who possess a gift of seership that permits them to discern the true needs of nature. On occasion, these infinitely wise and limitlessly benevolent beings – most of whom have found a niche in some foundation-funded eco-radical lobby – will identify “endangered” or “threatened” species whose supposed claim to a “habitat” outweighs property rights and all human needs.

Since none of those non-human creatures can speak on their own behalf, we should consider ourselves extravagantly blessed by the presence of eco-seers capable of discerning their needs, bureaucrats willing to harken to their inspired counsel, and judges who dutifully ratify bureaucratic decisions without being unduly burdened by respect for property rights.

In 1993, acting on an infallible ecocentric pronouncement, the Bureau of Land Management decreed that the land on which Cliven Bundy and his neighbors had long grazed their cattle was actually the “habitat” of the desert tortoise.

Although the BLM – like other agencies involved in administering Washington’s illegal colonial occupation of western lands – has been influenced by biocentrism, it’s not likely that its upper echelons are filled with True Believers in anything other than the Bureaucratic Prime Directive: “Maintain what we have, and expand where we can.”

The BLM’s revisions were imposed during the reign of Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt, who in a letter two years earlier (written while he was head of the League of Conservation Voters) declared: “We must identify our enemies and drive them into oblivion.” Babbitt and his comrades have acted with what Sherman described as “vindictive earnestness” in pursuing that objective: In the past twenty years they have all but eradicated cattle ranching in the southwestern United States.

In his book War on the West, William Pendley of the Mountain States Legal Foundation observes that “the enormous might of the federal government has always meant that the life of the West was in the hands of strangers living thousands of miles away. Like the weather that can sweep down upon Westerners and change their lives in an instant, the federal government has always loomed as a distant threat.” During Babbitt’s tenure at the Department of the Interior, the federal eco-jihad specifically targeted “the most enduring symbol of the American West – the cowboy – seeking to price and regulate the rancher off federal grazing lands and out of business, destroying the economy of rural areas.” One of the first initiatives undertaken by Secretary Babbitt in pursuit of his vision of a “New West” was to seek a 230 percent increase in grazing fees charged to ranchers on federally administered lands. Although the proposed fee increase was thwarted by a Senate filibuster, the effort to destroy the ranching industry continued. After the fee increase was proposed, an Interior Department memo surfaced which revealed that Babbitt wanted “to use price increases as a straw man to draw attention from management issues.” While ranchers fought the grazing fee increase, Babbitt and company created “Range Reform ’94,” a cluster of proposed federal land use and environmental regulations which Pendley describes as “A Thousand and One Ways to Get Ranchers off Federal Land.”During the late 1990s – a period in which Babbitt, appropriately, was mired in a scandal involving decades of federal fraud, embezzlement, and graft in the Indian Trust Fund System – ranchers rallied to hold off the federal assault. But like the Plains Indians, the ranchers were facing an implacable enemy unburdened with respect for the law and blessed with access to limitless resources. Of the 52 ranchers in his section of Nevada, Cliven Bundy is the only one who has refused to go back to the reservation. So the heirs to Sherman and Sheridan have mobilized an army to protect hired thieves who have come to steal the Bundy family’s cattle with the ultimate purpose of driving him from the land.

Their objective is not to protect the desert tortoise, but to punish a defiant property owner and entrepreneur. This potentially murderous aggression is being celebrated by Progressives as a worthy effort to make dangerous radicals “feel the superior power of the Government.”

For more than two decades, Bundy has defied the federal land management bureaucracy, and his continued resistance could catalyze a general revolt against their designs for the western United States.

Their intent, as described by Pendley, is to transform the West into “a land nearly devoid of people and economic activity, a land devoted almost entirely to the preservation of scenery and wildlife habitat. In their vision, everything from the 100th meridian to the Cascade Range becomes a vast park through which they might drive, drinking their Perrier and munching their organic chips, staying occasionally in the bed-and-breakfast operations into which the homes of Westerners have been turned, with those Westerners who remain fluffing duvets and pouring cappuccino.”

The high priests of biocentrism and their bureaucratic allies aren’t going to let a handful of ragged but resolute ranchers “check and stop the progress” of Manifest Destiny.

In 1875, amid an entirely contrived Indian Scare in Corrine, Utah, Indian Agent William H. Danilson sent a telegram to Washington complaining about the dangerous “extremism” that had seized the restive Shoshones. “They are taught to hate the government, and look with distrust upon their Agents,” complained the bureaucrat. The Indians impudently maintained that “Bear River Valley belonged to them” and were preparing to resist efforts to evict them from their property.

“Their whole teachings [are] fraught with evil,” concluded Danilson, scandalized that Indians would believe in the sanctity of property, and thus expected the federal government to keep its promises.

Historian Brigham D. Madsen records that an Army investigation of that 1875 Indian Scare found that the Shoshones – who were, as usual, starving because of the government’s failure to deliver promised rations – posed no threat. Nonetheless, the military “issued an ultimatum that all reservation Indians were to return to their reservations at once or [the local commander] would use military force to compel them to do so.”

It didn’t matter that the Indians had done nothing wrong, and that the government had acted illegally: The cause of “law and order” meant that the government simply had to prevail. That was the central theme in Washington’s dealings with the Indians – and in its conduct toward western landowners as well.

Fifteen years after the Corinne Indian Scare, the final flickers of Indian resistance were extinguished by Leviathan in the bloody snows of Wounded Knee. Our rulers clearly intend to use the standoff in Clark County to suffocate remaining resistance to the western states land grab. The only matter left unresolved is the question of how much violence they are willing to employ to accomplish that end.

 

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Hobby Lobby Case is About Rights, Not Contraceptives

9 Dec

Ron Paul Institute

December 9, 2013

 

One of the most important cases the US Supreme Court will consider this term is Hobby Lobby’s lawsuit challenging the Obamacare mandate that employer-provided health care plans must cover abortion and contraceptives. Hobby Lobby, a corporation owned and managed by a traditional Christian family, argues that the mandate violates their First Amendment rights.

Much of the discussion has focused on whether a corporation such as Hobby Lobby can even have First Amendment rights. But the issue of “corporate personhood” is a smokescreen. Hobby Lobby’s corporate status has no bearing on whether under Obamacare, Hobby Lobby’s owners, about whose personhood there is no doubt, have a right to run their business in a manner consistent with their moral beliefs. If the form by which Hobby Lobby did business was relevant to its right to operate free of federal interference, then Hobby Lobby could avoid the Obamacare mandate by simply reorganizing itself as a partnership or sole proprietorship.

Some Obamacare supporters cast this case as a conflict between Hobby Lobby’s First Amendment rights and the rights of its employees to contraception and abortion. Hobby Lobby is not trying to stop its employees from obtaining contraceptives and abortions; it is simply asking that the government not force it to pay for them.

Forcing Hobby Lobby to pay for abortion services is especially offensive because Hobby Lobby’s owners consider abortion a form of murder. Those who, like me, agree that abortion is an act of violence against an innocent person, will side with Hobby Lobby. However, this case is not about the legality of abortion. It is about whether someone can have a “right” to force someone else to provide him with a good or service.  Therefore, even those who support legal abortion should at least support a business’s right to choose to not subsidize it.

Supporters of the mandate claim Congress has the power to create rights to privately-provided goods and services. They also say that Congress has the power to legislatively override the rights of religious liberty, property, and contract. It is fair to ask what is the source of Congress’s power to create new rights. It certainly does not originate in the Declaration of Independence, which expressly denies that rights come from the government; or from the United Stares Constitution, which nowhere granted government the power to redistribute or create artificial rights.

The principle that Government can force businesses to violate their religious principals even if those principles conflict with civil law could be applied in ways some Obamacare supporters may find objectionable. For example, what if the government argued that the Pentagon’s need for some products produced by a Quaker-owned business trumped the Quaker owner’s objections to war?

The hypothetical example above shows just how radical and dangerous are arguments in support of the Obamacare abortion and contraception mandate. If Hobby Lobby loses, the US Supreme Court will have endorsed the idea that the federal government can force individuals to violate their most sacred religious principles to satisfy any government demands. The central question of the Hobby Lobby case, then, is whether religious liberty will continue to be meaningful in this country. For what good is a religious liberty that protects your rights to attend a worship service, but allows the government to force you to live in opposition to the values preached at those services? This is why all supporters of liberty and limited government—regardless of their views on the morality of contraception—should be on the side of Hobby Lobby.

See the Ron Paul File

 

A Very Dangerous Game

30 Nov
Townhall.com logo
NOVEMBER 29, 2013

Thomas Sowell

11/20/2013 12:01:00 AM – Thomas Sowell

New York City police authorities are investigating a series of unprovoked physical attacks in public places on people who are Jewish, in the form of what is called “the knockout game.”

The way the game is played, one of a number of young blacks decides to show that he can knock down some stranger on the streets, preferably with one punch, as they pass by. Often some other member of the group records the event, so that a video of that “achievement” is put on the Internet, to be celebrated.

The New York authorities describe a recent series of such attacks and, because Jews have been singled out in these attacks, are considering prosecuting these assaults as “hate crimes.”

Many aspects of these crimes are extremely painful to think about, including the fact that responsible authorities in New York seem to have been caught by surprise, even though this “knockout game” has been played for years by young black gangs in other cities and other states, against people besides Jews — the victims being either whites in general or people of Asian ancestry.

Attacks of this sort have been rampant in St. Louis. But they have also occurred in Massachusetts, Wisconsin and elsewhere. In Illinois the game has often been called “Polar Bear Hunting” by the young thugs, presumably because the targets are white.

The main reason for many people’s surprise is that the mainstream media have usually suppressed news about the “knockout game” or about other and larger forms of similar orchestrated racial violence in dozens of cities in every region of the country. Sometimes the attacks are reported, but only as isolated attacks by unspecified “teens” or “young people” against unspecified victims, without any reference to the racial makeup of the attackers or the victims — and with no mention of racial epithets by the young hoodlums exulting in their own “achievement.”

Despite such pious phrases as “troubled youths,” the attackers are often in a merry, festive mood. In a sustained mass attack in Milwaukee, going far beyond the dimensions of a passing “knockout game,” the attackers were laughing and eating chips, as if it were a picnic. One of them observed casually, “white girl bleed a lot.”

That phrase — “White Girl Bleed A Lot” — is also the title of a book by Colin Flaherty, which documents both the racial attacks across the nation and the media attempts to cover them up, as well as the local political and police officials who try to say that race had nothing to do with these attacks.

Chapter 2 of the 2013 edition is titled, “The Knockout Game, St. Louis Style.” So this is nothing new, however new it may be to some in New York, thanks to the media’s political correctness.

Nor is this game just a passing prank. People have been beaten unconscious, both in this game and in the wider orchestrated racial attacks. Some of these victims have been permanently disabled and some have died from their injuries.

But most of the media see no evil, hear no evil and speak no evil. In such an atmosphere, the evil not only persists but grows.

Some in the media, as well as in politics, may think that they are trying to avoid provoking a race war by ignoring or playing down these attacks. But the way to prevent a race war is by stopping these attacks, not trying to sanitize them.

If these attacks continue, and continue to grow, more and more people are going to know about them, regardless of the media or the politicians. Responsible people of all races need to support a crackdown on these attacks, which can provoke a white backlash that can escalate into a race war. But political expediency leads in the opposite direction.

What is politically expedient is to do what Attorney General Eric Holder is doing — launch campaigns against schools that discipline a “disproportionate” number of black male students. New York City’s newly elected liberal mayor is expected to put a stop to police “stop and frisk” policies that have reduced the murder rate to one-fourth of what it was under liberal mayors of the past.

Apparently political correctness trumps human lives.

Providing cover for hoodlums is a disservice to everybody, including members of every race, and even the hoodlums themselves. Better that they should be suppressed and punished now, rather than continue on a path that is likely to lead to prison, or even to the execution chamber.

America Has Entered a New Level of Tyranny

26 Nov

By 

The Common Sense Show

November 25, 2013

Information is gathered for a purpose. We attend school, gain knowledge and acquire employment. We gather knowledge about someone we are dating and then make a decision about the future of the relationship. When the government is gathering information on us which goes beyond the basic census information, then we should be asking a lot of questions along the lines of “When will the surveillance gathering being conducted by the NSA turn into outright persecution”?

The Unmistakable Pattern of Tyranny

Every advancing tyranny has two distinct stages. In the first stage, the “enemies” of the state are identified. Lists are created and distributed among law enforcement. These lists are often leaked to the public to serve as a deterrent against any thoughts of engaging in anti-government behavior. There is typically a prolonged period of demonization followed by formal labeling.

History is replete with examples when surveillance gathering turns into labeling followed by outright persecution. In fact, I cannot think of an accurate historical example of when a country engaged in a police state surveillance grid, did not eventually victimize a significant number of its own citizens.

In the second stage of tyranny, the identified groups are singled out for “corrective” action. Corrective action usually commences on an incremental basis. Following identification, enemies of the state are usually singled out for employment discrimination, travel restrictions, residency restrictions and then the inevitable incarcerations and worse begin to transpire. This pattern happens every time following the establishment of a police state in America. America does indeed meet the denotation of a police state according to the dictionary.

Once this process begins, the advancement of tyrannical persecution of the people is inevitable without a revolution. The whole process begins with unwarranted surveillance

Who Does Our Government Watch?

James Clapper, Director of National Intelligence recently released a series of declassified documents which demonstrates how the National Security Agency (NSA) has been granted carte blanche to spy on American citizens.

What can an American do to end up under the watchful eye of the NSA? The recent release of information with regard to this question led to the discovery that their agency concerns  extended to those who worship in a mosque, people who write and readarticles which criticizes the government, speaks publicly about their opposition to various government policies, publicly profess a belief in the First Amendment and anyone who works as a journalist.

The implications of the above mentioned groups which warrant NSA surveillance are stunning as well as frightening. Does anyone else find this very unsettling, that one can become an enemy of the state for professing a belief in the First Amendment?  Imagine that you are a victim of health insurance dumping and Obamacare incompetence has left you without medical insurance, you are labeled a dissident for speaking out. What about the government which claims that it doesn’t racially profile? Tell that to people of Islamic faith who have done nothing wrong and love being an American.

Ask the Question

 With all the historical precedents, it is amazing that nobody seems to be asking the question, “When does all of this intelligence gathering become actionable”?  In other words, what is the government going to do with all the surveillance data that they have acquired? Is this an exercise in mental masturbation, or is the NSA and ultimately the government going to do something with this vast amount of personal information? Why isn’t anyone asking these questions? Once again, the answer to the first question is that there never has been a police state that did not act upon the information it gathered on the people, and I believe that time is upon America. Below, I have listed three examples of encroaching tyranny, with each example more pronounced in its intrusion into civil liberties.

The TSA and the Increase In Their Incremental Level of Tyranny

Every totalitarian government tries to make it difficult to travel and the TSA is fulfilling their role to this end. For over a decade, the TSA has become the symbol of the state’s superiority over the individual. With the unwarranted second sexual assault practices being committed against the flying public every day, the TSA is taking their tyranny to a new level.

Have you heard about the new mini-jails that the TSA has placed at Syracuse Airport? Passengers are forced into a bottleneck as they pass through what are called pods as they leave the terminal. A futuristic, female voice gives instructions to wait inside the pod until a green light is shown and the door opens. Travelers can become electronically trapped or detained at the whim of the TSA. This is just one more example of the conditioning that the TSA provides for the establishment which is teaching the American people that your body does not belong to you, it belongs to the state.

The pods are part of a $60 million dollar renovation. The installation of these pods are most certainly headed to other major airports as well. While in the pods (i.e. jail) a passenger can be detailed for further interrogation (i.e. molestation). Some of the passengers exiting through the pods at the Syracuse airport thought the machines were performing x-ray body scans. If one is lucky enough to exit the pods, they are not permitted to re-enter the terminal. I view these pods as conditioning for future FEMA camp deportation and incarceration.

Syracuse Airport Commissioner, Christina Callahan said, “We need to be vigilant and maintain high security protocol at all times. These portals were designed and approved by TSA which is important.” Christina is also partaking in the TSA tyrannical Kool-Aid as well. Not only is this going to cause the price of flying to skyrocket, it is turning our airports into being more like prisons than ever before.

 

Agenda 21, Wildlands and Drones

As most awake people are aware of, Agenda 21 poses a grave threat to property rights, freedom to travel and livelihoods of many Americans. Agenda 21 advocates won’t be satisfied until all humans are living in stack and pack cities and the rural areas are devoid of all people.

In a page right of the movie, Hunger GamesEcologist Lian Pin Koh is making a case for using drones to protect the world’s forests and wildlife. Do you remember the opening scene of the movie, Hunger Games, where a drone is patrolling a forbidden wildlands area where humans are expressly forbidden to hunt game or even cross in to the area?

Under Koh’s proposal, drones will be used to track animals in their natural habitat, monitor the health of rainforests, even combat crime by detecting poachers via thermal imaging. Poachers? Is that what the UN Agenda 21 crowd is going to call me as I remain in my rural home?

Koh expands conservation efforts by promoting the use of low-cost autonomous aerial vehicles. The forces of oppression are lining up against you America.

 

The above two examples demonstrate how tyranny is slipped in one step at a time on multiple fronts. However, when the following is acted upon, the Great American Genocide will begin.

The NDAA

It is amazing how many Americans have never heard of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). Under the NDAA, a person can be snatched off the street without cause, not allowed access to an attorney, held indefinitely, never charged with a crime and never released. An NSA identified enemy of the state could presumably be murdered and who would know?

I recently had a colleague tell me that my claims that America has become a police state were overblown. His logic consisted of the belief that if one is not doing anything wrong, then one should not mind being under constant surveillance. With the hundreds of billions being spent by the NSA to gather information combined with the unconstitutional NDAA legislation, speaks clearly to the fallacy that it does not hurt anything to have the government constantly spying on you. These unwarranted and unconstitutional practices have made enemies of the state out of tens of millions of Americans. Since Congress only has a 9% approval rating and Obama has slipped to a 37% approval rating, what does this say about how the matrix of the NSA will judge the majority of us?

We have entered a time when the NSA enemies list of First Amendment supporters, government critics and Muslims can just disappear just like what happened with the Gestapo and KGB of the totalitarian regimes of the past.

Conclusion

I do not think most people know how close we are to living in an absolute tyranny. Can you imagine what life would have been like if Hitler, Stalin or Mao had the technology which is at the disposal of today’s despots?

For the first time, I truly feel I am risking my life to write these words and you are taking the same risk by visiting websites such as mine. All of us are now labeled. It does not matter whether you agree with what is written on my website, or not. You have been judged and labeled by the mere fact that you are here. It does not matter if you never visit another alternative media website or not. There is now a definitive record of your disloyalty to the state. I seriously doubt if the system perceives a citizen any differently with regard to whether we write the words of disloyalty to the state, or we merely read them. Both groups have sinned against the almighty state in word and deed and they aim to stop you before you might act against this police state.

We are one false flag event away from absolute tyranny, followed by the imposition of martial law.  We are all in a lot of danger.

Reprinted with permission from The Common Sense Show.

Copyright © 2013 Dave Hodges

Previous article by Dave Hodges: Cops Kill 8 Times More Americans

Censoring the “S” Word

17 Nov

October 30, 2013

 

“It is a very significant fact that the adversaries of the trend toward more government control describe their opposition as a fight against Washington and against Berne, i.e., against centralization.  It is conceived as a contest of states’ rights versus the central power.”

“I saw in States’ rights the only availing check upon the absolutism of the sovereign will, and secession filled me with hope, not as the destruction but as the redemption of Democracy.”

  • Letter from Lord Acton to General Robert E.Lee, Nov. 4, 1866

Do Silicon Valley entrepreneurs want to bring back slavery, perhaps using the newly enslaved to assemble computers and other electronics?  One Anand Giridharadas, writing in the October 28 New York Times, would have you think so.  His opening sentences are:  “First the slave South, now this.  Is Silicon trying to secede from America?

Giridharadas is apparently horrified that a Silicon Valley entrepreneur named Balaji Srinivasan gave a speech at Stanford University recently in which he advocated “seceding from [American] society” and its looting and over-bloated welfare/warfare state.

As is typical of all statists, inside and outside of government, whenever the “S” word is mentioned Giridharadas, like all the rest, attempts to effectively censor all discussion of secession by insinuating that taking the idea seriously reveals that one must secretly condone slavery.  Or at least be an apologist for the Confederacy, an institution that has been demonized by the American state like no other for the past 160 years.  (The same American state that condoned and enforced slavery with Fugitive Slave Clauses and Acts from the end of the Revolutionary War (1783) until 1866).

In addition to this silly censorship game, your typical worshipper of the centralized bureaucratic empire either lies about history or repeats nonsensical and incorrect slogans about it.  That’s what Giridharadas does when he writes “First the slave South, now this.”  Well, no, the “slave South” wasn’t the first to secede.  The American colonists seceded from the British Empire to create the confederacy known as the United States.  America was born of secession.  The Declaration of Independence was a declaration of secession in which the individual states are called “free and independent.”

The first Americans to plot secession after the Revolution were the New England Federalists, who hated Jefferson and his limited-government ideas; fiercely opposed the trade embargo that he imposed as president as an alternative to another war with England; and were especially opposed to the War of 1812.  New Englanders effectively seceded when their country was at war by not participating in the War of 1812.

Josiah Quincy was so upset over so many non-English immigrants that would be allowed into the country after the Louisiana Purchase that he declared that “the bonds of this Union are virtually dissolved” and that “it will be the right of all . . . to prepare definitely for a separation . . .”  That is, for secession. (See Daniel Wait Howe, Political History of Secession, p. 135).  Then came a decade-long crusade for New England secession, led by Massachusetts Senaor Timothy Pickering, who also served as secretary of state and secretary of war under George Washington.  After denouncing Jefferson’s “depravity” in a letter to George Cabot, Pickering said that “the principles of our Revolution point to the remedy – a separation.”

The New Englanders discussed (and threatened) secession for an entire decade, culminating in the 1814 Hartford Secession Convention.  At that convention they decided to try to take over the national government rather than secede from it, but there were few voices who did not believe that individual states had a right to secede. It was widely understood that the “free and independent” states were sovereign, hence were free to participate or not participate in the union.   Indeed, as a condition of ratifying the Constitution New York, Rhode Island and Virginia issued proclamations to the effect that they reserved the right to withdraw from the union at some future date if it ever became destructive of their liberties.  Since all states (including all of those that came after the original thirteen) have equal rights under the Constitution, it was assumed that not just those three states had a right of secession, but all of them did.

Lincoln literally threatened “invasion” and “bloodshed” in any state that attempted to secede in his first inaugural address, sounding a more like a twentieth century communist dictator than an American founder.  In sharp conrast,  in his first inaugural address Thomas Jefferson stated that “if there be any among us who wish to dissolve the Union or to change its republican form, let them stand undisturbed, as monuments of the safety with which error of opinion may be tolerated where reason is left free to combat it.”

In a January 29 1804 letter to Dr. Joseph Priestly, Jefferson wrote that “whether we remain in one confederacy or form into Atlantic and Mississippi confederacies, I believe not very important to the happiness of either part.  Those of the western confederacy will be as much our children & descendants as those of the eastern . . . and did I now foresee a separation at some future day, yet I should feel the duty & the desire to promote the western interests as zealously as the eastern.”

When asked by John C. Breckenridge what he thought of the New England secession movement, Jefferson responded on August 12, 1803 by saying that if there were a “separation,” then “God bless them both, & keep them in the union if it be for their good, but separate them, if it be better.”

There was a powerful secession movement in the “middle states” (New York, New Jersey, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Delaware) in the 1850s, as documented by William C. Wright in his book, The Secession Movement in the Middle Atlantic States.   All of this is why, on the eve of the War to Prevent Southern Independence, the great majority of Northern newspapers editorialized in favor of peaceful secession of the Southern states, as documented in Howard C. Perkins, Northern Editorials on Secession.  In general, the right of a state to secede “was not disputed” in most Northern newspapers in 1860-61, writes Perkins.  Typical of these newspaper editorials was one in the Cincinnati Daily press on November 21, 1860:  “We believe that the right of any member of this Confederacy to dissolve its political relations with the others and assume an independent position is absolute – that, in other words, if South Carolina wants to go out of the Union, she has the right to do so, and no party or power may justly say her nay.”

On December 17, 1860 the New York Daily Tribune wrote that if tyranny and despotism justified the Revolution of 1776, then “we do not see why it would not justify the secession of Five Millions of Southrons from the Federal Union in 1861.”  The New York Journal of Commerce warned on January 12, 1861, that by opposing secession Northerners would be changing the very nature of their government “from a voluntary one, in which the people are sovereigns, to a despotism where one part of the people are slaves.”  This is not entirely correct, however; under a coerced union held together with the threat of Lincolnian “invasion” and “bloodshed,” all the people are slaves to the state, not just “one part” of them.

All hail Balaji Srinivasan and the Silicon Valley libertarian secessionists!

 

The Best of Thomas DiLorenzo

What Americans Used To Know About the Declaration of Independence

17 Nov

by Thomas J. DiLorenzo

“During the weeks following the [1860] election, [Northern newspaper] editors of all parties assumed that secession as a constitutional right was not in question . . . . On the contrary, the southern claim to a right of peaceable withdrawal was countenanced out of reverence for the natural law principle of government by consent of the governed.”

~ Howard Cecil Perkins, editor, Northern Editorials on Secession, p. 10

The first several generations of Americans understood that the Declaration of Independence was the ultimate states’ rights document. The citizens of the states would delegate certain powers to a central government in their Constitution, and these powers (mostly for national defense and foreign policy purposes) would hopefully be exercised for the benefit of the citizens of the “free and independent” states, as they are called in the Declaration.

The understanding was that if American citizens were in fact to be the masters rather than the servants of government, they themselves would have to police the national government that was created by them for their mutual benefit. If the day ever came that the national government became the sole arbiter of the limits of its own powers, then Americans would live under a tyranny as bad or worse than the one the colonists fought a revolution against. As the above quotation denotes, the ultimate natural law principle behind this thinking was Jefferson’s famous dictum in the Declaration of Independence that governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed, and that whenever that consent is withdrawn the people of the free and independent states, as sovereigns, have a duty to abolish that government and replace it with a new one if they wish.

This was the fundamental understanding of the meaning of the Declaration of Independence – that it was a Declaration of Secession from the British empire – of the first several generations of Americans. As the 1, 107-page book, Northern Editorials on Secession shows, this view was held just as widely in the Northern states as in the Southern states in 1860-1861. Among the lone dissenters was Abe Lincoln, a corporate lawyer/lobbyist/politician with less than a year of formal education who probably never even read The Federalist Papers.

The following are some illustrations of how various Northern-state newspaper editors thought of the meaning of the Declaration of Independence in 1860-1861:

On November 21, 1860, he Cincinnati Daily Press wrote that:

We believe that the right of any member of this Confederacy [the United States] to dissolve its political relations with the others and assume an independent position is absolute – that, in other words, if South Carolina wants to go out of the Union, she has the right to do so, and no party or power may justly say her nay. This we suppose to be the doctrine of the Declaration of Independence when it affirms that governments are instituted for the protection of men in their lives, liberties, and the pursuit of happiness; and that ‘whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it, and to institute new government . . .’

On December 17, 1860 the New York Daily Tribune editorialized that “We have repeatedly asked those who dissent from our view of this matter [the legality of peaceful secession] to tell us frankly whether they do or do not assent to Mr. Jefferson’s statement in the Declaration of Independence that governments ‘derive their just powers from the consent of the governed . . . . We do heartily accept this doctrine, believing it intrinsically sound, beneficent, and one that , universally accepted, is calculated to prevent the shedding of seas of human blood.” Furthermore, the Tribune wrote, “[I]f it justified the secession from the British Empire of Three Millions of colonists in 1776, we do not see it would not justify the secession of Five Millions of Southrons from the Federal Union in 1861.”

The Kenosha, Wisconsin Democrat editorialized on January 11, 1861, that “The founders of our government were constant secessionists. They not only claimed the right for themselves, but conceded it to others. They were not only secessionists in theory, but in practice.. The old confederation between the states [the Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union] was especially declared perpetual by the instrument itself. Yet Jefferson, Madison, Monroe and the hosts of heroes and statesman of that day seceded from it.” And, “The Constitution provides no means of coercing a state in the Union; nor any punishment for secession.”

Again on February 23, 1861, the New York Daily Tribune reiterated its view that “We must not, in behalf of either of the Union of Freedom, trample down the great truth that ‘governments derive their just power from the consent of the governed.’”

The Washington, D.C. States and Union newspaper editorialized on March 21, 1861, that “The people are the ruling judges, the States independent sovereigns. Where the people chose to change their political condition, as our own Declaration of Independence first promulgated, they have a right to do so. If the doctrine was good then, it is good now. Call that right by whatever name you please, secession or revolution, it makes no sort of difference.”

This last sentence was a response to the Republican Party propaganda machine of the day that invented the theory that the Declaration allows for a “right of revolution” but not a right of “secession.” The States and Union recognized immediately that this non-distinction was nothing more than a rhetorical flimflam designed to deceive the public about the meaning of their own Declaration of Independence. It is a piece of lying propaganda that is repeated to this day by apologists for the American welfare/warfare/police state, especially the Lincoln-worshipping neocons at National Review, the Claremont Institute, and other appendages of the Republican Party.

On the eve of the war the Providence, Rhode Island Evening Press warned that “the employment of [military] force” against citizens who no longer consented to being governed by Washington, D.C. , “can have no other result than to make the revolution itself complete and lasting, at the expense of thousands of lives, hundreds of millions of dollars, and amount of wretchedness fearful to contemplate, and the humiliation of the American name.”

The Evening Press then reminded its readers that in the American Revolution the colonists rejected “the Divine right of Kings” to do whatever they wanted to their subjects. “Our forefathers disputed this dictum,” they wrote, and “rose against it, fought against it, and by successful revolution accomplished their independence of it. In its place they substituted the doctrine that ‘to secure human happiness, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed . . .”

On this Fourth of July most Americans will not be celebrating or commemorating these founding, natural law principles. To the extent that they are celebrating anything but a day off work to overeat and overdrink, they will be celebrating the imperial warfare/police state with hundreds of parades featuring marching soldiers in camouflage, flags galore, military vehicles, jet fighter fly-overs, “patriotic”/warmongering musical anthems, etc. The symbol of all of this is King Lincoln himself, who rejected every single principle of the Declaration of Independence. His successors have reinterpreted the document to “justify” endless military interventionism all over the globe in the name of “making all men everywhere equal.” To the neocons, this means perpetual wars for “democracy.” This of course has nothing whatsoever to do with the real meaning of the Declaration of Independence and is in fact the exact opposite. No people in any country that has been invaded and occupied by the U.S. military have ever consented to being governed as such by Washington, D.C. As such, they can all be thought of as Neo-Confederates.

July 4, 2013

Thomas J. DiLorenzo [send him mail] is professor of economics at Loyola College in Maryland and the author of The Real Lincoln; Lincoln Unmasked: What You’re Not Supposed To Know about Dishonest Abe, How Capitalism Saved America, and Hamilton’s Curse: How Jefferson’s Archenemy Betrayed the American Revolution – And What It Means for America Today. His latest book is Organized Crime: The Unvarnished Truth About Government.

Copyright © 2013 by LewRockwell.com. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit is given.

The 1st Amendment is not a Guardian of Taste

4 Oct
 

Revenge Sex

By

Long dead English playwright William Congreve penned the famous (paraphrased) line: “Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.” Thanks to today’s cell phone technology and wandering morals, we will see if the First Amendment’s “free speech” will withstand the latest furious onslaught from one Holly Jacobs (nee Thometz)

Ms. Holly claims to be a victim of Revenge Sex, the new train wreck of social media morality, privacy rights, private property rights and individual responsibility when, in 2006, she sent nude pictures of herself to her boyfriend. When the relationship went south two years later, Ms. Jacobs subsequently found those pictures on over 200 “revenge porn” web sites.

For the uninitiated, Revenge Sex is the sharing of intimate pictures and videos young women (GF) create for their new love interest (BF) using the features of their latest Smart Phones while ignoring the old technology of Thought (DUH).  As with many marriages, these hook-ups end early and badly, with the GF leaving and the BF nursing his rejection – but still in possession of those revealing and usually salacious videos. You can see where this is going…

BF uploads said pics and vids to web sites specializing in Revenge Porn. At some point, former GF learns that more of herself than she ever imagined was spread across the Internet courtesy of the old BF. That is Revenge Sex.

A Google search for “Holly Jacobs Revenge Porn” returns 1.3 million results, most of which recount her travails after learning what her “ex” (allegedly) did after he became “ex’d”. While her experience was horrific in many ways, Ms. Jacobs’ “revenge” is to not only continue as an activist/spokeswoman against Revenge Sex, but push for laws against it. While noble on the surface and accompanied by a compelling emotional pull, the coming collision with the First Amendment (and others) should be everyone’s primary concern. Ms. Jacobs states “This material was only meant for the eyes of the person I shared it with.” Aye! There’s the rub! (So to speak). However, there is no statement from Ms. Jacobs her graphic displays came with a caveat or a statement on Limits of Distribution or Retention of Ownership. Police provided no satisfaction citing Ms. Jacobs was over 18 and was responsible for sending the “material” in the first place.

My friend and occasional broadcast partner, FOX News Senior Judicial Analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano correctly points out: “The Government has no business deciding which speech should be heard…spoken or, in printed or digital form should be viewed. Criminalizing that which was freely given and freely received would be invalidated under the First Amendment. The First Amendment is not the guardian of taste.”

Would you be amazed and appalled to learn Ms. Jacobs does not agree? In fact, she coined a new term for her experience: Cyber Rape. She claims while actual rape victims were told: “you were asking for it,” Revenge Rape victims are told: “you never should have taken those pictures.” To them, Ms Jacobs advises: “Do not for one second blame yourself.”

So there you have it: cyber morality! You voluntarily take off your clothes…voluntarily take revealing pictures (or more)…voluntarily send them to your BBF. When you receive international Internet exposure, you’re a victim without accountability – not even “for one second.”

Not wasting any more seconds of her own, Ms .Jacobs is working with lawmakers in Florida to pass a bill that would make publishing revenge porn without a victim’s consent a third-degree felony, essentially asking the force of the State to punish someone else for her indiscretion.

“Everybody’s going to see me naked, and everybody’s going to see me do things I never wanted anybody to see except the person I was with. But if it’s in the name of the cause and to change the laws about this, then I’m happy to do it. We’re all naked underneath our clothes.”

That we are, Ms. Jacobs but clothed or naked, blaming others for our bad decisions and risky behavior is even more revealing than your Revenge Porn vids.

You cannot have Freedom and Liberty without Individual Responsibility.  Any serious considering of Ms. Jacobs’ proposed law would be the legislative rape of Liberty.

The Best of Brian Wilson

Brian Wilson [send him mail], nationally ignored talk show host and occasional LRC un-indicted co-contributor, is currently taking a break from his daily annoyance of miniscule audiences and concentrating his efforts on the Libertas Media Project, a multi-media Internet news distribution and discussion center from his technically challenged studios on the shores of Smith Mountan Lake, Virginia.

Copyright © 2013 by LewRockwell.com. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit and a live link are given.