We shouldn’t need to ask

By Josiah Wedgwood (1730-1795) and either William Hackwood or Henry Webber; "Josiah Wedgewood...produced the emblem as a jasper-ware cameo at his pottery factory. Although the artist who designed and engraved the seal is unknown, the design for the cameo is attributed to William Hackwood or to Henry Webber, who were both modelers at the Wedgewood factory." (http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/aia/part2/2h67.html PBS]) (British Abolition Movement) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Facts: Pennsylvania’s 1780 Act for the Gradual Abolition of Slavery predated the Constitution by 7 years. It predated Lincoln’s emancipation proclamation by 83 years and it predated the 13th amendment by 85 years.

Pennsylvania’s emancipation act also preceded the end of slavery by more than 230 years (and counting) in the handful of countries where slavery is still practiced today.


Missouri Gun Bill Would Jail Feds for Violating 2nd Amendment

Missouri Representative Todd Richardson has introduced a bill that would stop federal gun control “laws” at the state border.

HB 209 would amend the Missouri Code concerning firearms. The text of the bill simply states that:

Any federal law, rule, regulation, or order created or effective on or after January 1, 2013 shall be unenforceable in the state of Missouri if the law, rule, regulation, or order attempts to:
(1) Ban or restrict ownership of a semi-automatic firearm or any magazine of a firearm; or
(2) Require any firearm, magazine, or other firearm accessory to be registered in any manner.

This bill, if passed, would nullify any federal gun control bill that would limit the citizens of Missouri access to firearms, ammunition and accessories and make it a felony to try to implement it in Mississippi. A section from this bill reads:


Enemy of the State

In a published FOIA request, an Airman stationed in the UK was investigated after a mental breakdown caused by conflicting values of US military’s mission and her own political beliefs. She was found to sympathize with Bradley Manning, Julian Assange, and Wikileaks. She had admitted to communicating her political ideas with various organizations known for anti-war/anti-military sentiments on Twitter and to a UK journalist. She also attended the Julian Assange Trial. However, her own admission and tweets revealed that she was never asked to release any intelligence to these groups and denied volunteering any intelligence to any journalist or group. The US Airforce Office of Special Investigations filed a complaint report on matters alleging “Communicating with the Enemy.”

The Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) Article 104: Communicating with the Enemy states:

“Any person who–
(1) aids, or attempts to aid, the enemy with arms, ammunition, supplies, money, or other things; or
(2) without proper authority, knowingly harbors or protects or gives intelligence to or communicates or corresponds with or holds any intercourse with the enemy, either directly or indirectly;
shall suffer death or such other punishment as a court-martial or military commission may direct.”

Who is the enemy in this document? Is it Julian Assange? Wikileaks? Journalists? Bloggers? Social media users? Those opposed to an unconstitutional and failed foreign policy? Anti-war organizations? The leaked document does not directly point to any person or organization but acknowledges who the Airman was in contact with and her activities surrounding her political beliefs. But, constitutionally speaking, who gets to determine the enemy?

The Constitution does not provide any structure to determine an enemy. An enemy could be those the US is at war with. Congress has the power to declare war but there is no framework as to what constitutes a declaration of war. In Federalist Paper number 3, it states, “The just causes of war, for the most part, arise either from violation of treaties or from direct violence.”


Wyoming to Battle NDAA on Tuesday

by People Against the NDAA

On December 31st, 2011, President Barack Obama signed the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012, containing provisions which authorized the indefinite detention, extraordinary rendition (and assassination) of anyone around the world without charge or trial. This law marked one of the darkest eras in American history, declaring the United States a battlefield and legally subject to the laws of war.

Now, in a shot  to be fired across the Federal government’s bow, HB 114 has been introduced in Wyoming. The bill, sponsored by Rep. Kendell Kroeker and co-sponsored by Rep. David Miller, Rep. Hans Hunt, and Sen. Cale Case, will protect the liberty of the citizens of Wyoming by prohibiting the unconstitutional provisions of the 2012 NDAA to be enforced here.

“The Constitution of the United States has the Bill of Rights for a reason,” said Representative Kroeker, “I take an oath to support, obey, and defend the Constitution and I take that seriously.  When the federal government passes legislation that violates the constitution, it is our duty as a state to make sure we protect the rights of our citizens.”


Mississippi Gun Bill Would Jail Feds

Mississippi Representative Mark Formby along with 25 co-sponsors has introduced a bill that would stop federal gun control “laws” at the state border.

HB 625 would amend the Mississippi Code concerning firearms. The text of the bill simply states that it is:

“An act to prohibit enforcement of federal law regarding firearms, accessories or ammunition manufactured in the state that remains within the borders of the state; to provide that any federal law which attempts to ban a semi-automatic firearm or to limit the size of a magazine of a firearm or other limitation on firearms in this state shall be unenforceable in the state; to provide a penalty for violations of this act; and for related purposes.

No public servant or dealer selling any firearm in this state shall enforce or attempt to enforce any act, law, statute, rule or regulation of the United States government relating to a personal firearm, firearm accessory or ammunition that is owned or manufactured commercially or privately in Mississippi and that remains exclusively within the borders of Mississippi.”


Paul Ryan Says ACA Will Collapse; Wisconsin Can’t Wait

393114_10151157538900764_721518766_nDuring his first public appearance since the election, Representative and former vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan spoke in Racine on Sunday to discuss the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA). Joining Rep. Ryan were Cato Institute’s Mike Tanner, Wisconsin Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, and Wisconsin State Senator Leah Vukmir.

Addressing an audience that would have liked to have seen Romney/Ryan in the White House repealing and replacing ACA this month, Rep. Ryan noted that is not happening. Ryan then went on to say the next method in line for ACA to be repealed is that “it collapses under its’ own weight”.

Representative Ryan also said ACA is an issue that determines our debt, and our economy. He went on to say ACA is the issue that ultimately determines our freedom.

Certainly, Representative Ryan doesn’t want the United States to undergo a debt collapse like Greece, nor an economic collapse such as Japan, nor a collapse caused by lack of freedom such as the Soviet Union. Logic dictates that the 51% of Americans (Rasmussen) that want ACA repealed cannot feasibly wait for a collapse. Wisconsin must join the several states that are asserting states’ rights and saying “NO” to ACA.


Georgia’s Jury Nullification Act

Representative Charles Gregory has prefiled HB25, known as the Fully Informed Jury Act of 2013.

This act states, “In a criminal jury trial, the court shall permit the defendant or his or her counsel to argue for jury nullification in its role as the judges of the law and the facts pursuant to Article I, Section I, Paragraph XI of the Constitution.” Article I, Section I, Paragraph XI of the Georgia Constitution deals with the right to trial by jury, number of jurors, and the selection and compensation. If the Fully Informed Jury Act passes, then the Georgia Constitution would be amended to include jury nullification as a responsibility of the court.

Jury nullification has had a long tradition extended prior to American History. During colonial times, jury nullification was successfully used and juries informed of their right.

In 1734, Peter Zenger, a writer for The New York Weekly Journal was being prosecuted for seditious libel by the Royal Governor of New York. Retold in a Mises journal article “The court instructed the jury that truth was no defense. Defense counsel Andrew Hamilton, however, urged the jury to reach their own conclusions about this legal issue.” The jury came back with a not guilty verdict.


Arizona Bill Would Reaffirm Ability to Privately Purchase Firearms and Equipment

Arizona Representatives Carl SeelSteve SmithAdam KwasmanDavid W. StevensBob ThorpeJudy BurgesBrenda BartonDavid LivingstonDarin MitchellKelly TownsendJohn AllenSonny Borrelli and Kelli Ward have introduced a bill that would prohibit the federal government from implementing restrictions on privately purchasing firearms and equipment.

HB2431 would amend Arizona revised statutes by adding a section relating to purchasing firearms. The text of the bill states the following:

“To maintain proficiency of arms, a person who is eligible for service in the Arizona state guard pursuant to section 26‑121 may privately purchase, in accordance with all other laws, any particularly suited firearm or equipment.  The sale of a particularly suited firearm or equipment for the purpose of maintaining proficiency of arms is lawful within this state.  A person who possesses a particularly suited firearm or equipment pursuant to this subsection shall lawfully keep and maintain the firearm or equipment and may lawfully use or transport the firearm or equipment in this state.”

“E.  For the purposes of this section, “particularly suited firearm or equipment” includes:
1.  Any semiautomatic handgun that is lawfully possessed by a person who is at least twenty-one years of age, including a semiautomatic handgun with standard military or law enforcement magazine capacities.
2.  Any semiautomatic shotgun or pump shotgun, in all barrel lengths except as prohibited by title 13, chapter 31, including a semiautomatic shotgun or pump shotgun with standard military or law enforcement magazine capacities.
3.  Any semiautomatic rifle, in all barrel lengths except as prohibited by title 13, chapter 31, including a semiautomatic rifle with standard military or law enforcement magazine capacities and configured with varieties of flash‑hiding devices, pistol grips, vertical foregrips, detachable magazines, bayonet lugs, bayonets, collapsible or folding stocks, carrying slings, aiming systems, lights and any other firearm mounted equipment in use by the armed forces of the United States or any law enforcement agency in this state.
4.  Any full-capacity magazine, ammunition‑feeding device or caliber of ammunition that is compatible with the items set forth in paragraphs 1, 2, and 3 of this subsection, including sufficient quantities of ammunition necessary to maintain a high degree of proficiency of arms and to maintain a ready supply of ammunition in the event the state guard is established.
5.  Any other small arms weapons system, ammunition or equipment that is in use by the armed forces of the United States or any law enforcement agency in this state.”

It’s important to note


Surprise: Law Professor Misinterprets Supremacy Clause

Have you ever read an article that you were not sure what stance the author takes on the subject but presents both sides of the argument at once? I had the distinguished experience recently when I was reading the article titled “Sheriffs, State Lawmakers Push Back on Gun Control” on the Newsmax website (see: http://www.newsmax.com/Newsfront/Gun-Control-Pushback/2013/01/17/id/471825). It was a little confusing until I got about half way through it and read a quote by Sam Kamin.

Sam is a constitutional law professor at the University of Denver. One would think that if someone was a law professor that they would actually know and understand the law. Or in this case, a constitutional law professor – who should then know and understand the constitution. It is highly unfortunate when people like Sam misspeak about a subject. Their title gives them some credibility so people think what they say is true because they are supposedly an “expert”. But, when they make a mistake it is still a mistake.

The Supremacy Clause of Article VI, Clause 2 reads:

This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in pursuance thereof; and all treaties made, or which shall be made, under the authority of the United States, shall be the supreme law of the land; and the judges in every state shall be bound thereby, anything in the constitution or laws of any state to the contrary notwithstanding.

Sam makes the comment that state legislatures can pass any laws they want but that the Supremacy Clause of the Constitution makes such actions unconstitutional. He further states that when there is a conflict between state and federal law, the federal government is supreme. Nothing could be farther from the truth. His blanket statement implies that the state laws are not necessary and state governments are not necessary because the federal government and its laws are supreme.