Let’s talk about the Constitution

Let’s talk about the Constitution

Gary Hunt

March 17, 2010

Patriots have, for decades, challenged the assertion by the courts that the Constitution does not apply to you (the Defendant).  The Defendant’s reaction is that the court is ignoring the Constitution.  So, to begin with, let’s make one thing clear about the Constitution — It does not operate on you.

Now, most of you are probably scratching your head and wondering what I have been smoking.  Well, I have been smoking tobacco.  Tobacco was one of the principal means by which we were able to fund the Revolutionary War.  The use of that tobacco is my right, and is without the authority of government to intrude upon.

The government was given no authority, by the Constitution, to act upon the people, nor were the people in any way bound by the Constitution.

The Preamble to the Constitution for the United States of America sets forth its (the Constitution’s) purpose:

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

Read very carefully that the purpose is to provide for certain things, especially “secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity“. Now, how is that to be accomplished?  Quite simply, by framing a government that will achieve those ends.

As was so eloquently stated in the Declaration of Independence:

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 new government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness.

So, the Constitution set out to complete that which was proposed in the Declaration of Independence, “That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed…”  So, clearly, the intention of both the Declaration and the Constitution is to provide a government — not a people, but a government — which purpose is to secure those blessings.

So, a government is created by that Constitution.  If you read it, carefully, it is instructions for the creation and management of the government.  It also provides for both authorities and limitations on what the government is allowed to do, even to the point of separating the national functions from the functions of the states.

Now, let us consider what we have given the government.  We have given it “authority” to do certain things, and, have withheld from it the authority to do other things.  We have not said what we could do, or what we could not do, with only a few exceptions (counterfeiting, treason, etc.).  And, absent those exceptions, there is nothing that is imposed upon us.

Going a bit further, it must be presumed that if we granted the authority, to the government, to do certain things, that we must have had the authority to make such grant.  After all, how can I grant to someone, or something, that which I do not have, myself.

But, that is what government is (at least under out Constitution), the transfer of authority that we hold to the collective instrument of government.  For example, I have the right to protect my property.  Though I do not give up that right, I have assigned a portion of my authority to protect my property to the government.  However, this does not preclude me from protecting my property in the absence, or failure, of government to do so.  However, once the government has interceded, by, say, apprehension of someone who stole from me, I relinquish my right to shoot him in the act of stealing, and subordinate my authority to the collective authority, by virtue of the right to a trial by jury.

Similarly, we have granted the government the authority to wage war on our behalf.  We have conditioned that grant of authority in the requisite that only the Congress can Declare War, since war is, by its nature, a community affair and.  If we go to war, the majority of the community must agree to it.  Otherwise, if only one member of a community is allowed to declare war on another community, he has, by his act, embroiled all of the other members of his community, and the other community, in a blood contest.  Quite clearly, the authors of the Constitution realized this relationship when they set forth the requisite that the Congress, both the House of Representatives and the Senate, concur on war, and did not give that authority to one man, even though he be the executive of that community.

So, we can see how the Constitution was a grant of collective authority, for the purpose of consolidating our individual authority into a government, for the purposes laid out in the preamble.

Now, if we look at the limitations and restrictions, we will see that they are not laid out to protect us.  Quite simply, they were laid out to limit the authority that we have granted.

So, the question arises as to whether that authority is only valid in the United States, or, even only applicable to citizens of the United States.

Well, the Constitution does not define where it is applicable, it only states that the government (the creation of the people) can, or cannot, do certain things.  It is the chains that bind the government.  It is the authority by which they exist.  The government cannot do what it is not authorized to do.

If you give someone a position of management in your company, and you set limitations on that management authority, the authority (under the laws of agency) extends only to what and where that authority is given.  The authority is a grant based upon what you have, and the limitations on location are, quite obviously, limited by what you own and have authority over.

So, do you have the right to kidnap someone?  If not, then you cannot grant that right to government.  In fact, the necessity of retraining someone is clearly defined, though as an afterthought (clarification) in Article V, Bill for Rights.  This was an assurance that the government could not presume to be able to do what we could not, deprive someone of their Liberty, without the consent of the people, via the Grand Jury.  Having not the power to kidnap, how can the government assume that we could give them that authority?

Punishment, likewise, is restricted to that which is not cruel, nor is unusual.  And, punishment is always a consequence of crime, that crime to have been determined to have been committed by the accused by a jury of his peers.

This, when coupled with the right not to be required (forced) to witness against yourself (again, an afterthought included in Article V. Bill of Rights), the right to be secure in your person, house, papers and effects (Article IV, Bill of Rights, again a prohibition on the government), together provide a prohibition on the government from forcing you to give up your secrets, incriminate yourself, or to any other form of duress, especially when that duress is imposed by physical means (torture).

In the final extreme, the government has withdrawn previous laws that prohibited assassination.  They have assumed that they have the authority to ‘impose capital punishment’, without benefit of a trial.

To presume that authority was granted to punish, without conviction, for the purpose of obtaining information, or to execute him without trial, is repugnant to the Constitution, and without any authority that was vested in the government by the people.

As Thomas Jefferson said, in his draft of the Kentucky Resolves (1798), “It would be a dangerous delusion were a confidence in the men of our choice to silence our fears for the safety of our rights…  Confidence is everywhere the parent of despotism.  Free government is founded in jealousy, and not in confidence.  It is jealousy and not confidence which prescribes limited constitutions, to bind down those whom we are obliged to trust with power…  Our Constitution has accordingly fixed the limits to which, and no further, our confidence may go…  In questions of power, then, let no more be heard of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution.”

If we assume that these limitations (restraints) upon the government are not to be imposed, when the person being subjected to such unauthorized actions is in another country, and we acquiesce to the government’s presumed authority to exceed its written authority, either by enactment, or simply by actions, we have also acquiesced to the government ignoring the contract which created that government.  Once ‘granted’ that authority by the people refusing to object to such violations, we have established the precedence that the Constitution is to be interpreted by those who exist only because of it, as they see fit.  Once the government realizes that it has circumvented the Constitution, without objection, what is to stop those encroachments from going contrary to the Constitution (which it has, as explained, already done) to a point of total submission to the omnipotent power of the government?

In consideration of a solution to the problem, let us reflect on the significance of what we have learned.

Authority comes from us.  We must assume, then, that either we, or the government, will define that which we authorized.  If it be us, then we must object, whenever any such abuse of authority exists, or, we must concur.  Ironically, if we object, and that objection is not heard, our recourse is what the Founders utilized in disposing of a government that did not adhere to its contract.

On the other hand, we might assume that, since we have allowed the government to decide what we have granted them, and, barring any justification that prevents us from exercising that same right, as in the case of defending our property, we must assume that we have the right to kidnap, torture and assassinate, as the government can have not authority which we do not possess.

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