Do you believe in self-rule?

Do you believe in self-rule?  Can people determine for themselves how to live and what kind of governmental system that they will live under?

Sure you do!

Right?

But are you sure?

Please, consider the following questions:

Should the federal government be involved in regulating marijuana?

Should the federal government be involved in regulating other drugs?

Should the federal government establish a central bank?

Should the federal government declare anyone an enemy combatant without due process?

Should the federal government regulate marriage: gay or straight?

Should the federal government take either the Pro-Choice or Pro-Life stance on abortions?

Should the federal government regulate guns?

Should the federal government interfere in the health care market?

Should the federal government interfere in education?

If you answered “Yes,” to any of these questions, then on some level you don’t believe in the concept of self-rule.  Therefore, you are imposing your values or morals on others who might not share them.

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A Tenther’s Guide to the Fiscal Cliff

Watching Republicans and Democrats squabble over the so-called fiscal cliff is like watching a duo of burglars arguing over who keeps your flat screen television. No matter which party prevails, you lose.

Tenthers, as a class, tend to be more pre-occupied with the liberty cliff, whose precipitous incline we fell off long ago. The other various cliffs – fiscal, debt, tax policy, entitlements – are really just the jagged rocks we’ve met on the way down. Which is why Tenthers tend not to wade into the whole fiscal cliff debate. If your causes are liberty, constitutional rule of law and sound currency, then it seems downright silly to sweat the details of how much the federal government should raise the debt ceiling to pay for foreign wars, Obamaphones and highways named after U.S. Senators.

Consider the numbers. The federal government now spends $3,800,000,000,000.00 per year. Various taxes supply about $2,900,000,000,000.00 of that amount. The free ride component – the annual deficit – has now accrued to a staggering $16,000,000,000,000.00 in national debt.

Faced with these appalling details, the Democrats (and Paul Krugman) respond with calls to tax and spend more. Republicans, the supposedly more fiscally continent of the two parties, grumble on about tax increases and then invariably capitulate to more borrowing and spending. And with the deck chairs on the Titanic nicely rearranged, the American people are once again free. By “free” I mean free to watch Dancing with the Stars and Real Housewives of Cleveland while an omnipotent federal government further enslaves us into a highly regulated, pathetically dependent blob of couch potatoes.

So what would a Tenther do? I’m glad you asked!  Here’s 4 steps a Tenther would take:

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Consistently supporting liberty and the Tenth Amendment

One of the main obstacles to getting the “tenther” movement and the message of freedom to spread is that too many people claim they are for freedom on some issues (guns, taxes), but simultaneously claim to be anti-freedom on others (marijuana, gay-marriage).

Our two-party political system has raised people to believe that based on which party you subscribe to, you are supposed to advocate for either the federal government to get out of the way in regard to things that you like and to get in the way of people doing things that you don’t like. This is the essence of the problem. To truly embrace freedom and the tenth amendment movement, people need to start opposing federal involvement in EVERY area that is not authorized under the Constitution and not only in the activities which they personally disapprove.

For example, I know many republicans who constantly decry government interference in gun ownership and business, but practically BEG for it when it comes to banning gay marriage and drug use. The same goes for the other side; I know many democrats who say that government needs to get out of the way when it comes to marijuana and gays in the military, but they decry any attempt to lift the federal ban on abortion and/or repeal federal gun laws. It just doesn’t make any sense.

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What If This Were Bush?

cross-posted from The Beacon

It goes without saying that if Bush had presided over a phony end to the Iraq war, expanded the Afghanistan war, extended its reach into Pakistan, solidified the state secrets doctrine and claimed in no uncertain terms the right to assassinate American citizens without due process, the left would be up in arms. The partisan hypocrisy concerning war-related issues is clear.

But what about economic and domestic policy? What if the Bush administration had sunk the country another trillion dollars into debt with the explicit promise that his plan was all that could prevent a 9% unemployment rate – only to then stumble for a year with an unemployment rate closer to 10%? What if the Bush administration had imposed a mandate forcing Americans to patronize the health insurance industry? What if the Bush administration had been in place for these two years since the financial collapse, overseeing an obviously sheepish economy whose only signs of recovery are transparently superficial and temporary bumps in consumption and the employment for census workers? And speaking of “transparency,” what if Bush had vowed to have his deliberations with the medical industry out in the open, to put every major bill on the web before it was voted on, and to have the health care debate on C-Span for all the world to see, only to renege totally on these assurances and every other promise of transparency? What if the Bush administration had simultaneously designated carbon to be a “pollutant” while proposing to create a market in the right to pollute, with credits given to big firms to be bought and sold on Wall Street? What if the Bush administration had overseen the BP oil spill, with regulatory agents asleep at the wheel and had decided, unilaterally, to cap the company’s liability? What if the Bush administration had won an election on one major domestic promise – to take the corruption and chaos out of the financial markets and steady the economy back on track – only to preside over an expansion of the power of the very same agencies that led the markets astray, all the while those markets showed little sign of improving? What if the Bush administration had established such a flurry of ad hoc interventions as to frighten investors away from wanting to invest in the private economy?

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The Tenth Amendment Coalition

I’m not sure how you can have a Tenth Amendment web site without linking to the Tenth Amendment Center, but there it is.  The videos are interesting, anyway.  A couple Beltway insiders talking about the Tenth Amendment.

http://restorethetenth.org/

Part 1

Part 2

cross-posted from the Pennsylvania Tenth Amendment Center

The GOP’s Pledge to America

The House Republicans’ release of its “Pledge to America” has been met with criticism from across the ideological spectrum. While excoriation from the left was inevitable, those who were hoping that the GOP would set out a detailed agenda for limiting government were also not satisfied.

The 48-page document contains more pictures of Republican members of Congress than it does evidence that the GOP is seriously prepared to cut spending. While the introductory commentary is designed to appeal to the tea party movement, the actual “plan” to return budgetary sanity to Washington is both timid and incomplete.

The following are some thoughts on the pledge’s “plan to stop out of control spending and reduce the size of government”:

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Which Political Party Will Best Protect Our Liberties?

An interesting read from the Fabius Maximus Blog: Our decades of experience with both parties makes this question easy to answer. Neither. They are partners, chopping at the tree of liberty from opposite sides. A harsh reality, which we avoid by seeing it only in our political opponents. The next post in this series identifies…

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Declare Your Independence!

Many of us in Tennessee have been greatly disappointed in the outcomes of the August primary.  Unfortunately many of the best party candidates were eliminated during the primaries, and members of the liberty movement in Tennessee have expressed their frustration and concern at the outcome.  The two party system has yet again failed, in most…

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Do we want representatives pulled into line?

According to Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA) those members of his faction , the Democratic Party, most likely to be defeated in 2010 are the very members difficult to pull into party line. As reported in a recent article in The Hill Waxman was very clear on why he believes many will lose their seat in Congress this coming election actually referring to weeding out difficult Democrats. This line of thinking is critical to understanding the root problem we face under a governing standard based on the rule of law resting with the people.

Quoting the Berman and Hooper article, “I think a lot of the House seats we’re going to lose are those who have been the toughest for the Democrats to pull into line — the Democrats that have been the most difficult,” Waxman said. When we understand the job of the Majority or Minority Whip as the person responsible for whipping faction members into line with the rest of the party it is not surprising someone with as long a career as Waxman has had feels these Democrats are difficult. He is not alone as a believer in party members serving in Congress for the benefit of the party rather than the people.

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At Odds with Both Sides of the Political Spectrum

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?

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