A lesson from Kansas: federal health care marches forward

Last November, Republicans swept into office, not only at the national level, but also in the state capitals. Voters in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Maine, North Carolina, and Alabama shifted control of both of their state houses from Democrat to Republican. The GOP also took power in Indiana, Ohio, Michigan, and Pennsylvania, winning one previously Democrat controlled chamber, and the Republicans increased majorities in many other states.

Opposition to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act served as a driving force in many elections.

The newly empowered legislators went to work “fighting” the health care act, often referred to as Obamacare, introducing health care freedom acts in 21 states.  Kansas and Tennessee passed the legislation, which was signed into law by their respective governors, and Ohio and Florida voters will go to the polls in November 2011 to vote on state constitutional amendments.  They joined seven states that passed similar legislation in 2010. These laws generally grant the citizens of the state the freedom to make their own health care choice and are designed to nullify the insurance mandates written into the federal law.

While health care freedom acts provide a sturdy soapbox for politicians to stand on while bragging  of slaying the federal behemoth, the reality in many states proves somewhat less impressive. For all of the blustering about state sovereignty and dueling Uncle Sam, states still struggle to wean themselves from their insatiable appetite for federal funds as they move ahead implementing the structure for federal health care.

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II Submits Brief Destroying Basis for Suit against Colorado’s Taxpayer Bill of Rights

The Independence Institute, through Dave Kopel as legal counsel, has submitted anamicus curiae (“friend of the court”) brief opposing the lawsuit to overturn Colorado’s Taxpayer Bill of Rights. The brief destroys the plaintiffs’ claim that by allowing citizens to vote on tax increases, Colorado is violating the U.S. Constitution’s requirement that all states have a “republican…

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Help for Gibson Guitars

The following is a letter I sent to both the Lt. Governor and Governor of Tennessee…

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Dear Lt Gov Ramsey,

I have recently become aware of an ARMED federal raid on Gibson Guitars’ manufacturing facilities in Memphis and Nashville that took place on 24 August.  Despite evidence provided by Gibson that they are in compliance with the laws allegedly broken, the federal government refuses to drop the matter.

For more details, please follow this link:

http://blog.tenthamendmentcenter.com/2011/09/feds-conduct-gestapo-style-raids-on-tennessee-guitar-maker/

While I live in Louisiana, how this conflict is resolved will affect me (and other States).  For if the federal government can act with this kind of violence and lawlessness toward my sister State of Tennessee without repercussion, then it is not a matter of IF such violations will happen again but WHEN and WHERE.

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Duty to Resist Federal Intrusion on Sovereignty

by Ed Martin

EDITOR’S NOTE: Ed Martin, 2012 candidate for US Congress in Missouri, sent the following letter to the entire state legislature in an effort to enumerate the role of a US Senator in the state’s effort to assert sovereignty.

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Dear Governor Nixon,

Recently, on behalf of all Missourians, you accepted over $20 million from the federal government to facilitate the implementation of Obamacare insurance exchanges.  I believe this was a mistake and I encourage you to send the money back and to refuse to take any action to implement Obamacare because the law is outside of the jurisdiction of the federal government  as defined by the United States Constitution.

If you do return the money and fight implementation, I pledge my support for your efforts.

I address this letter to you in your capacity as the senior elected official of the state of Missouri according to the Missouri Constitution.  I hope that this letter challenges your thinking.  With this letter, I offer you my commitment to assist you in protecting the liberty of the people of Missouri should I be elected to serve as United States Representative from Missouri’s Second Congressional District and you are re-elected to the office of governor.

It is obvious to me that significant changes have taken place in the relationship between  Missourians and our federal government – changes that  have diminished their liberty and are   not in the interest of Missourians or our nation.

First, the federal government has far outgrown its intended boundaries regarding its powers and the Constitution. Our federal representatives are cobbling together an ever more intrusive and expensive labyrinth of regulations, laws and mandates by asserting authority never granted to them by the states.

Second, our elected officials have, for too long, acquiesced to federal overreach; this acquiescence occurs out of self-interest, disinterest, or misunderstanding. The elected officials charged with protecting the sovereignty of  Missourians – namely our state elected officials as well as our  two United States Senators and the eight United States Representatives  (as of January 2013) – have not been up to the task.

I believe the time has come to begin the long work to restore the proper balance between the states and the federal government.  Toward that end, I offer you my solemn pledge to fight for the liberty of “We the people of Missouri” and to stop the over-reaching federal government in any way I can.  I pledge to assist and advocate for you in your efforts as Governor of Missouri should I be elected as a United States Representative from Missouri in 2012.

Early this year, Americans marked the first anniversary of the Affordable Care Act,  commonly known as Obamacare.  Most Americans now recognize this federal takeover of health care as an unwelcome intrusion and a dramatic overreach by the federal government.  Our own state’s clear repudiation of Obamacare in August 2010 along with the general election results in November 2010, ought to have meant the end of this scheme; however, with a divided Congress, repealing Obamacare seems as remote today as it seemed the day after passage.

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Tenther Radio 09-07-11. Federal Raids, Sovereignty, Debates

Please join us for TRX: Tenther Radio on September 7, 2011 right here – listen live by clicking the play button at that time at this link. Join the conversation with your comments and questions by calling 213.785.7848. Hosts Michael Boldin and Lesley Swann will talk Gibson Guitar Raids, GOP Debates and more Add to…

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Tenth Amendment Committees: On the Ground Activism

NOTE: Francisco Rodriguez will be a featured speaker at Nullify Now! Jacksonville.  Get tickets here – http://www.nullifynow.com/jacksonville/ – or by calling 888-71-TICKETS

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What is a Tenth Amendment Committee (tac)?
A Tenth Amendment Committee is a groups formed within an organization (Political Party from local to national, Political Action Committee, Activist Groups, Social Justice Groups, etc.) whose exclusive purpose is to Educate and Activate on issues that surround the 10th Amendment of the US Constitution.

What would the Education entail within a 10th Amendment Committee?
Without effectively understanding the role of the federal government and the enumerated powers found in the US Constitution knowing the 10th Amendment gives you very little to work with regarding the role of the states and the people within the federated Republic of these United States.  Classes or events on the US Constitution and the nullification powers of the states and the people are necessary to become an effective Activist in LIMITING FEDERAL POWER to only the powers the Founders intended in the Constitution.  The Florida Tenth Amendment Center in collaboration with the National Tenth Amendment Center will be providing information and educational tools surrounding the US Constitution and the nullification powers of the states and the people for your Tenth Amendment Committee to use and distribute.

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The Constitutional Tender Movement in Georgia

cross-posted from the Sound Money Center

In early 2009, I was teaching a course on American Government at Gainesville State College here in Georgia. As I was going over with my students the powers prohibited of the States in Article I, Section 10 of the U.S. Constitution, we hit upon this one: “No State shall… make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts”.

A student in the back of the room raised his hand, and asked, “What does Georgia use for paying its debts – money owed to the State, and by the State?”

“Federal Reserve Notes,” I replied.

“Not gold or silver coins?” he asked.

“No, not gold or silver coins. And no, Federal Reserve Notes are not backed by gold or silver coins, either.”

He raised his hand again. “Which States DO use gold and silver coins for paying State debts?”

“None of them,” I answered. “They all use Federal Reserve Notes, which were declared to be ‘legal tender’ by the U.S. Congress.”

“When did we pass a Constitutional Amendment to change this requirement in Article I, Section 10?” He had a puzzled look on his face.

My answer seemed to puzzle him even more. “We didn’t.”

It was quiet in the classroom at that point. I waited. I didn’t have to wait for long.

“How have the States gotten away with that?”

I didn’t have an answer to that question. And it bothered me. So, I went and did some research on it – and what I found confirmed that student’s concern: the Constitution makes it clear that “No State shall… make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts”. This means that no State can make something besides gold or silver a “tender in payment” (which means they cannot make something else an “offer as payment”) for any debts, which would include debts owed by and to the State. However, EVERY State in the United States of America HAS made some other “Thing” an offer as payment – they have by law declared that they will accept, and pay out, Federal Reserve Notes for any debts owed by or to them.

Therefore, every State is in violation of Article I, Section 10 of the U.S. Constitution.

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Will Liberty Survive Technology?

America has a love affair with technology. We “can’t live without it”. So we suppose. “[A] new poll by National Public Radio, the Kaiser Family Foundation, and Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government shows that people overwhelmingly think that computers and the Internet have made Americans’ lives better” (Survey Shows Widespread Enthusiasm for High Technology, found at http://www.npr.org/programs/specials/poll/technology/). However, according to this poll, Americans feel there are potential dangers.

But these Americans feel the dangers of technology do not include the lack of government authority or government abuse in using this technology. Just the opposite: they “would like the government to protect them from these dangers” (Ibid). The implication is clear: the people do not feel the government’s use of technology poses any dangers or risks against liberty.

With this kind of perspective, it appears technology and liberty may find themselves at war with each other—sooner rather than later. Ultimately, it will put people at war: those who want more technology to make their lives easier and those who want more liberty to live independently and freely.

The question is, “does technology—and its continual advancement—improve the natural and societal condition of mankind?” Well, perhaps the question cannot be stated so simply to obtain the true answer. Still, the subject is especially relevant because what the commercial world creates today, the government uses tomorrow and in mass. We are facing realities today that previous American generations could not have imagined.

Recall that Thomas Jefferson thought the West would not be developed for 1,000 years. No sooner had he spoken those words, the West was being developed rapidly because of the unforeseeable Industrial age. Of course, my parents’ generation could never have thought that they could transfer mega information from tiny handheld devices through satellite and laser technology. Now here we are today to prove their minds incapable of comprehending how fast technology was to advance. For certain, what future generations will have to deal with only intensifies the debate of technology verses liberty.

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