Just before Christmas in 1776 Thomas Paine began one of his most famous dissertations by writing, “THESE are the times that try men’s souls.” If only his declaration was not as apt today as it was then. In the last four months Congress has approved nearly $1.7 Trillion in spending – over and above the already obscene $3 Trillion budget. Indeed, we are in crisis. A crisis born from the inherent power delivered to the architects of this spending. In the fall of 1964 a prescient Ronald Reagan said, “A government can’t control the economy without controlling people.” We have been subjugated and are now under control of the national government. All semblance of a federal system has been stripped from the walls of these United States. When the government becomes so big that it cannot be restrained, when it confiscates earned wealth and private property, and when people no longer have the right to self-determination, we have succumbed to tyranny. It is a soft tyranny, but it exists nonetheless and it is no less abhorrent. To reverse that which has been encroaching for the last century through the legislative process is a most difficult task. While the despots responsible for its construction remain in power it is impossible, save for one option: State by state, we could extract ourselves from the iron grip of national government. Nationalist tyranny cannot exist without national subjects. Therefore, through systematic secession, the States can regain their federal power and escape the crisis which no longer looms, but has engulfed our United States.
Our own Declaration of Independence calls for this:
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; and that among these, are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed; that whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute a new government, laying its foundation on such principles, and organizing its powers in such form, to effect their safety and happiness.”
Just what exactly did Jefferson mean when he wrote these words? Liberty and the pursuit of happiness cannot be taken lightly as these are the principles on which we were founded. These are the rights that we are all born with. They are rights granted by God. They cannot be stripped from us, except by coercion. When government accumulates so much power that it begins to take power, not by consent of the governed, but by confiscation, decree, legislative fiat, it is the very definition of coercion. Here then, government has become perverted and must be eliminated and created anew – just as our own Declaration of Independence prescribes. This is the most basic and powerful argument for secession. Who among us could argue that the National government has not exceeded its authority?
Egregious violations of public trust are too numerous to list. Each government program is less effectual than the one before, but our elected officials are so emboldened by power they do nothing to restrain it. They only seek to further entrench themselves and their power base, by taking more and more of our liberty and our subsequent ability to pursue happiness.
Not only have our most basic rights been trampled upon, but our original system of government has been eroded to unrecognizable. So many citizens seem to forget that it is the States which are supposed to hold power over the central government since they created it. The central government is supposed to be bound by very specific and enumerated powers, but it is not. Instead the central government has complete control over the States, and therefore, over the people. It is in direct contradiction to the Constitution and all scholarly interpretation. Federalist 39 says that:
“Each State, in ratifying the Constitution, is considered as a sovereign body, independent of all others, and only to be bound by its own voluntary act.”
If this is true, can each State not exercise the voluntary act of secession?
Secession seems to be the only available option to rid ourselves of the ever-growing power of the supreme national government. If the Commonwealth of Virginia were to secede, for example, what benefit might we immediately realize?
- Immediate elimination of federal withholding taxes, social security taxes, Medicare taxes, Medicaid taxes.
- Business would stop paying federal taxes
- All business would no longer be responsible for national regulation
Although these are nice benefits, it only takes short reflection to realize that a solitary State would surely fail, as issues of interstate commerce, currency, raising a militia and many others came to burden the lone entity. It is for this reason that there should be a systematic and complete secession of all the States.
A new Constitutional Convention must be called between the States to revise the Constitution back to its original form. We can use the 233 year history of government to add a shield of protection to the people of the United States for another 233 years and beyond. The hard work is already over as the framework is already in place for success. We must only remove ourselves from this government that has grown beyond its design and then reinstate a government under more strict controls of the people. By adding safeguards against encroaching soft tyranny, against unlimited legislation under the guise of general welfare, and protecting us against judicial fiat, we can once again become a Republic that stands as a model for the rest of the world. But we must add language that provides overt and strict enumeration of power.
We have a model of Convention that has already proven effective. Once the new Constitution is drafted, it will then be circulated amongst the States in historic fashion to be ratified. Each State could then seceed from the old and and ratify the new Constitution in what would become the death blow to tyranny and the re-birth of a great federalist Republic.
This new Constitution will put the self-determination of man and the God given individual rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness above all else; until such a time we will remain in crisis.