Foundational principles

From time to time, people ask me to share my guiding principles.

I can explain the foundational philosophy of the Tenth Amendment Center in a single sentence:

Follow the Constitution, every issue, every time, no exceptions, no excuses.

But some even deeper fundamental ideas led me to my involvement in TAC and drive my basic political ideology.

The first is the concept of self-ownership.

I own me.

I should maybe back up and explain that I actually believe God to be the ultimate sovereign. But He gave me free will and granted me sovereignty over myself – self ownership. I  choose to submit to His will and place Him back on the throne as a follower, but that isn’t relevant politically speaking, and the concept of self ownership works regardless of your religious belief.

John Locke summed it up nicely:


Defend the Guard!

AUGUSTA – State Rep. Aaron Libby has submitted a bill that would require Maine’s governor to withhold or withdraw approval of the transfer of the Maine National Guard to federal control unless Congress declares war. The measure has broad bipartisan support and has been referred to the Veterans and Legal Affairs Committee for its consideration.

“Only Congress has the constitutional authority to declare war,” said Rep. Libby (R-Waterboro). “Article 1, Section 2 of the Constitution gives the president command of the nation’s armed forces, but Article 1, Section 8 gives to Congress the power to decide when the United States goes to war. The framers feared placing too much power in the hands of one person, so they divided war powers authority.

“Unfortunately, our government has ignored this constitutional requirement ever since World War II, the last time Congress declared war,” he said. “It is time to return our country to the rule of law under the Constitution. The Maine Guard should not have to pay such a heavy price for politicians who ignore the bedrock law of our republic.”


Mending our Illness

When looking at any sign advertising the price of gasoline or diesel fuel, the effect of the Obama administration’s drilling ban in the Gulf of Mexico could not be clearer. And the full scope of the troubles wrought by this ban encompasses more than higher fuel costs alone.

Many seem to think that Louisiana and the other Gulf states are completely at the mercy of the federal government vis-à-vis offshore drilling. However, if Louisiana and her sister states are willing to study history and to show a modicum of courage and independence, there are steps that can be taken to mend what the federal government hath made ill.

The first step is recognising the fundamental characteristics of our polity. The United States are not, and were never intended to be, a centralised, homogeneous nation with an all-powerful federal government directing all aspects of the citizens’ lives, whether moral, political, or economic. No, the genius of our Union is the division of power between federal, state, and local governments; and the limited nature of government at each of these levels.