Oklahoma governor Mary Fallin just set an important precedent. By rejecting $54.6 million in federal money to begin implementation of ObamaCare, the governor has firmly set herself against the unconstitutional law and with the citizens of her state. From Fox News: To make it clear Oklahoma will develop its own plan, the state will not accept a $54.6 million…Details
Though many living in New England today might be loathe to admit it, there is a long history of nullification being used in the region to defy unconstitutional federal edicts. This week, the town of Sedgwick, Maine voted to carry on that proud tradition by nullifying certain federal agricultural regulations.
They did so through what might be the most legitimate form of democratic expression left in America: the New England town meeting. (Which have been held in the Sedgwick town hall since 1794.)
“Sedgwick citizens…to produce, process, sell, purchase, and consume local foods of their choosing,”
but declares thatDetails
Many people seem to think our rights come from some kind of community agreement as in we all agree we can speak freely. What this is really saying is that other people have the power inhibit our free-will because the community can decide what restrictions are in place for each of us. When the community is not restricting us then it is seen as a privilege from the community since they are reserving the power to turn on and turn off the rights as it sees fit. The problem with this view is that it implies that others have some kind of inborn power over another person.
This is the crux of the argument against individual liberty in that it can be denied to any person simply because any power a person has over themselves only exist because the community gave it to them. This assumes that a person or group of people has some kind of inherent power over another and as much as we may think we do it turns out that we do not.
The reason for this is that we have a monopoly of control over our own being. The control over our own body is not shared with another so no other person can direct it in a manor that is not compliant with that person’s own wishes. No other person can direct the movement of our arms and legs which means that no other person can decide what direction their vessel for this life will take them.Details
In an earlier article for this website I’ve written about the non-coercion principle and how it is connected to individual liberty and morality itself. I laid out the reasons why moral rules that we hold dear are really products of individual liberty by using the imagery from Lord of the Rings. It was a little fun but I was not attempting to belittle the reader’s intelligence but to illustrate that the cause of all evil is the violation of the non-coercion principle which really is an assumption of power over other people.
Think of the worst act a human being can do to another which is rape. This is a crime in every culture but the difference between rape and sex is the non-coercion principle. Sex is a voluntary act between two willing people but rape is an involuntary act. The physical act does not change itself since it is intercourse as defined by medicine but the difference is free-will. Two people who engage in sex have free-will and each other’s consent to do it but rape is an absence of consent of one person. What made it a moral crime against another person was not the act itself since the act is essentially the same in both situations but more an absence of free-will. The absence of free-will made it an act of evil since there was none.
Not only does this rule apply to that situation but it also applies in all other situations where human beings interact with each other. The act of theft is no different than the act of trade since it involves the movement of one person’s property to another. The only difference is the absence of free-will. A person who exchanges their property with another does so freely of their own free-will. They may do this for charitable reasons or to get something that someone else has but whatever the reason is it is always done in accordance with their free-will.Details
The world is run by rules that determine how we interact with other people. A baseball team has rules on how it interacts with its players, a husband and wife have rules on how they interact with each other, and freedom has its own rule.
The non-coercion principle is the one rule of freedom because it is, as its name implies, when a person does not force or coerce in any way how another person acts. This allows each person to exist in a state of freedom since they are free to engage in any behavior they want without any other person having any say otherwise. This principle does not limit a person’s own choice over themselves but completely inhibits their choice over what other people do. The only right that is denied by this principle is the right to dictate what other people should do.Details
Here I discuss my book (co-edited with Murray Polner) We Who Dared to Say No to War: American Antiwar Writing from 1812 to Now. So many of us will say the government is incompetent and even sinister, but make an exception for this particular government program. Time for some fresh thinking.
We very rarely ask ourselves what is the true purpose for a society’s
existence because we just assume it exists without any effort on our
part. It is important to ask ourselves this question because knowing
its purpose will determine the proper way in which we should think of
Most of us just assume that society exists and that we, being members
of that society, just wake up, go to work, and function within it
without ever considering what it is we are functioning in. We are
like fish who just assume the water is there but we should begin ask
the question of what is the nature of the water we swim in.
Most of us assume that the purpose of society is to provide a place
for us to meet our social needs that satisfy our emotional needs for
companionship and belonging. That is not the true purpose of society
but only one of the beneficial byproducts of it.
h/t Pennsylvania Tenth Amendment center
This morning, I was asked by one of our state coordinators about the legal status of the TAC – why are we organized as a for-profit business rather than a 501c3 or c4 non-profit? Here’s the bulk of my response: This is more of a philosophical issue for us than a functional one. Our goal…Details
My conservative friends think I’m too liberal; my liberal friends think I’m too conservative…clearly I’m on the right track! It seems so simple to me, we are a constitutional republic, not a democracy. Therefore, our government should be limited to the powers granted to it by the Constitution. This doesn’t mean that we are always going to be comfortable with the results but it does mean we will always be free.
Sometimes freedom will make liberals angry (re: 2nd amendment) and sometimes freedom will make conservatives angry (re: gambling et al.). Why even have a Constitution if we aren’t going to follow it? The Constitution says that gold and silver shall be used as legal tender. Why do we use Federal Reserve notes as legal tender? The Constitution says that we only go to war with a decleration of war by Congress. Why did we go to war in Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan, and Iraq again without Congress delcaring war?Details