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Sunday, September 30, 2018

Trump Sets United Nations Straight

By Douglas V. Gibbs
Author, Speaker, Instructor, Radio Host
I didn't get a chance to watch President Donald Trump's speech to the United Nations general assembly in New York today.  He gave the speech on Tuesday, and it turns out that, as always, he knocked it out of the ballpark.

FrontPageMag called it "powerful."  I would like to add "skillful," "firm," and "undeniable" to that.  President Trump is, after all, the great negotiator, the hardest working president I have experienced in my lifetime (and perhaps over the last hundred years ... or more), the only president with the cajones to stand by the Constitution, and stand firm and tough as nails on the international stage.

Tuesday's speech was his second to the UN, and while I liked the first speech, in this one he didn't hold anything back, and I believe was his best speech, yet.

He began by going over the progress his administration has made.  Ronald Reagan had a policy of peace through strength.  In the case of Donald Trump, there is no strength like the power of success.

As Trump laid out the facts about how his "administration has accomplished more than almost any administration in the history of our country.”  A derisive laughter filled the room.  The socialists of the world doesn't see his accomplishments as progress, and they see him as a temporary joke that will fade away soon, and then they can get back to their elite engineering of the world's global future.  My question, at this point, was if Trump was going to be able to perhaps move some of them in his direction by the end of the speech.

President Trump smiled.  He replied to their laughter with his usual no fear attitude.  “I wasn't expecting that reaction but that's ok."

A mixture of laughter and applause.  They may not like him due to his opposition to their global and socialist agendas, but they revealed that they respect him, and that's the first step to getting things turned around.

Then, he disproved their doubts with a recitation of facts that touched on a booming economy in the United States, a military that is stronger than it has been in decades, and the reality that under his watch the leadership being portrayed by the United States on a large range of global issues is more assertive than ever since the last time he talked to these people a year ago.

On the global front President Trump has engineered and presided over a diminishing of threats, such as North Korea and Iran, for example.  With Trump's leadership the U.S. has engaged on the world stage and has brought more peace and more security around the globe, while simultaneously increasing faith in our own sovereignty as a country.

President Trump explained how the military has gotten stronger, and by the end of his first term he plans to have it more powerful than it's ever been.  "The United States is stronger, richer, and a safer country than it was when I assumed office less than two years ago."

And when the U.S. is at its best, the world remains freer, safer, and more prosperous.

He went on to explain that his administration is "standing up for America, and for the American People" first, but then added, "and we are also standing up for the world."

This was key.  Trump has been accused of being a protectionist and an isolationist.  Is it possible to defend one's sovereignty, while remaining a part of the club of the world's countries?  I think Trump proved it possible beautifully, as he articulately dismantled the globalist community word by word in this speech.

"When nations respect the rights of their neighbors and defend the interests of their people,” President Trump said, “they can better work together to secure the blessings of safety, prosperity, and peace.”

Did you hear the words from the U.S. Constitution in there?  "Secure the Blessings" comes from the Preamble.  President Trump is doing as the Framers of the Constitution desired.  Spread liberty, not by regime change, and do so by example, and through the strength of the country's prosperity.  Be the shining beacon on the top of the hill not to rule over the world, but to serve as an example to be emulated.

“America will always choose independence and cooperation over global governance.”

The room was silent.  Stunned looks draped across the faces of the attendees.  He laid out the tenets of sovereignty, liberty, and a strong America, and they weren't sure they were hip with it.

"We only ask that you honor our sovereignty in return."

A fair request, unless you are a socialist bent on globalism, or a Koran-embracing Muslim bent on world domination.

The room remained silent.

"It has been my highest honor to represent the United States abroad."

He then detailed his work in the Far East and Middle East that has been successful in moving those regions towards peace.

The room sat on their hands.

"Thanks to the United States Military, and our partnership with many of your nations, I am pleased to report that the blood-thirsty killers known as ISIS (I notice he did not legitimize them by calling them ISIL, like Obama did) have been driven out from the territory they once held in Iraq and Syria.  We will continue to work with friends and allies to deny Islamic radical terrorists any funding, territory or support, or any means of infiltrating our borders."

Not a peep.

He then addressed Syria, calling it "heartbreaking."  After reaching out to the feelings of those attending, Trump then made sure they understood his resolve.  "But, be rest assured that the United States will respond if chemical weapons are deployed by the Assad regime."

When President Trump went into the subject of refugees, rather than touch on the dangerous consequences of countries taking in jihad-age male Muslims, and the catastrophic impact migrants have had on Western communities, he explained how important it is for refugees to be taken in by countries closer to their original homes, "to ease his eventual return."  He used Jordan as an example.

Refugees, after all, are not supposed to be permanent residents in their host countries.

"This approach also stretches finite resources to help far more people, while increasing the impact of every dollar spent.  Every solution to the humanitarian crisis in Syria must also include a strategy to address the brutal regime that has fueled and financed it, the corrupt dictatorship in Iran."

"Iran's leaders plunder the region's resources to enrich themselves."

"Iran's neighbors have paid a heavy toll for the region's agenda of aggression and expansion.  That is why so many countries in the Middle East strongly supported my decision to withdraw the United States from the horrible 2015 Iran Nuclear Deal and reimpose nuclear sanctions.  The Iran Deal was a windfall for Iran's leaders.  In the years since the deal was reached, Iran's military budget grew nearly 40%.  The dictatorship used the funds to build nuclear capable missiles, increase internal repression, finance terrorism and fund havoc and slaughter in Syria, and Yemen.  The United States has launched a campaign of economic pressure to deny the regime the funds it needs to advance its bloody agenda."

Trump went on to explain the sanctions being imposed, sanctions that had been lifted, by the way, under the Iran Deal. This was a message to Iran and other hard-line Muslim countries in the Middle East, as well as a stab at President Obama's failed policies.

He explained that more sanctions would be on the way.  He took a strong position indicating that these kinds of regimes will not be allowed to exhibit the kind of aggression we are seeing from Iran.  He mentioned Israel, repeating his support for the U.S. ally, reminding the attendees of his decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital, and moving the U.S. Embassy to that city.

President Trump called all that he is doing as being obvious, fair, and that it is bringing peace and prosperity to the world.

"America's policy of principled realism means we will not be held hostage to old dogmas, discredited ideologies, and so called experts who have been proven wrong over the years time and time again. (stabs at Islam, Socialism, and Climate Change all in one shot).

When discussing trade, Trump talked about America's generosity, while other countries did not respond in kind.

"The United States will not be taken advantage of any longer.  For decades the United States opened its economy, the largest by far on Earth, with few conditions.  We allowed foreign goods from all over the world to flow freely across our borders.  Yet, other countries did not grant us fair and reciprocal access to their markets in return.  Even worse, some countries abused their openness to dump their products (while targeting China, he brought the whole room into the realm of blame on this one), subsidize their goods, target our industries, and manipulate their currencies to get an unfair advantage over our country.  As a result our trade deficit ballooned to nearly $800 billion a year.  For this reason, we are systematically renegotiating broken and bad trade deals."

NAFTA became his example.  He called his renegotiation of the deal with our North American neighbors "ground-breaking," of which it was.  He also referenced his latest success at the negotiating table, a new trade deal with South Korea (but he only said "Korea", making me wonder if he's trying to get people to accept the call for reunification of the two Koreas - another great success by the great negotiator).  "And this is only the beginning."

Trump then hammered on the countries who are trade rule breakers.  "To rig the system in their favor.  They engage in relentless, product dumping, forced technology transfer, and the theft of intellectual property."

Talk about not mincing his words.

Trump laid out the damage China has caused the United States.  "But those days are over.  We will no longer tolerate abuse.  We will not allow our workers to be victimized, our companies to be cheated, and our wealth to be plundered and transferred."

The words of a person who believes in the power of the free market, and I am sure a painful and unacceptable thing for the socialists in the room to listen to.  That said, those who have doubts in their hearts about socialism were probably reeled in just a little further.

Then he returned to President Obama, and the former president's tendency to engage on apology tours, apologizing for America being the leader in the world.

"America will never apologize for protecting its citizens."

He went back to his move to impose tariffs, especially those imposed on China.

"Our trade imbalance is just not acceptable.  China's market distortions and the way they deal cannot be tolerated. As my administration has demonstrated, America will always act in our national interest.  I spoke before this body last year and warned (a quick camera shot by BBC to Nikki Haley revealed an appreciative smile on her face) that the U.N. Human Rights Council had become a grave embarrassment to this institution."

His shift to the world stage was seamless.

"Shielding egregious human rights abusers (in particular, Muslim and communist countries) while bashing America and its many friends.  Our ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, laid out a clear agenda for reform ... no action at all has been taken ... [so] we withdrew from the Human Rights Council and we will not return until real reform is enacted."

Which launched President Trump into singling out the International Criminal Court (ICC) for criticism.

“As far as America is concerned, the ICC has no jurisdiction, no legitimacy and no authority.  The ICC claims near universal jurisdiction over the citizens of every country, violating all principles of justice, fairness and due process.  We will never surrender America’s sovereignty to an unelected, unaccountable global bureaucracy. America is governed by Americans.  We reject the ideology of globalism and we embrace the doctrine of patriotism."

That was a major punch in the gut of the globalist community, and their sinister one-world plans.

"Around the world, responsible nations must defend against the threats to sovereignty, not just from global governance, but also from other new forms of coercion and domination."

Definitely a stab towards Islam.

Energy also entered Trump's verbal tour de force.  He explained that "we have become the largest energy producer anywhere on the face of the Earth.  The United States stands ready to export our abundant, affordable supply of oil (which means domestic drilling, which is already on the rise, is an important part of Trump's plan to continue to make America Great Again), clean coal (in spite of Hillary's promise to shut down the coal industry if she had won the 2016 Presidential Election), and Natural Gas."

Then, a reasonable threat emerged, aimed at the Middle Eastern oil producers, and Russia.

"OPEC, and OPEC Nations, are as usual ripping off the rest of the world.  And, I don't like it, nobody should like it.  (You can hear a faint rumble of laughter if you listen closely)  We defend many of these nations for nothing, and then they take advantage of us, by giving us high oil prices.  Not good.  We want them to stop raising prices, we want them to start lowering prices, and they must contribute substantially to military protection for now on.  We are not going to put up with it, these horrible prices, much longer.  Reliance on a single foreign supplier can leave a nation vulnerable to extortion and intimidation (that's right, oil producing Middle Eastern nations, he's calling you out for what you really are ... and you can throw Russia into that mix, as well).  That is why we congratulate European states such as Poland for leading the construction of a Baltic Pipeline so that nations are not dependent on Russia to meet their energy needs."

Well so much for the Democrat Party argument that Trump is a Russian Puppet.  Oh, and was that a message to the opponents of the Keystone Pipeline stateside?

"We reject the interference of foreign nations in this hemisphere and in our own affairs (a very constitutional position that was not only the policy of President Monroe, as Trump pointed out, but of the framers of the Constitution, including George Washington, who warned against foreign entanglements).  The United States has recently strengthened our laws to better screen foreign investments in our country for national security threats, and we welcome cooperation with countries in this region and around the world that wish to do the same.  You need to do it for your own protection."

He then shifted to the threats against sovereignty by illegal migration, calling it "not humane."

“Migration should not be governed by an international body, unaccountable to our own citizens.”

He mentioned Venezuela, and the failure of socialism.  He said that socialism has bankrupted Venezuela.  "everywhere" it has been tried socialism has caused "suffering and decay... All nations of the world should resist socialism."

Trump explained that he believes in a community of diverse nations "pursuing their own unique visions," recognizing the "unlimited potential" of the United Nations if they are adequately reformed to make it “more effective and accountable.”

He expects other countries to step up and participate in the burden, and not for the United States to be the bankroll of the international organization. “Only when we each do our part and contribute our share, can we realize the United Nations highest aspirations.”

"What kind of world will we leave for our children, and what kind of nations will they inherit?"

President Trump discussed India, successfully lifting many out of poverty.  Saudi Arabia with its bold new reforms.  He praised Israel, and Poland, for standing up for their security and sovereignty.

"The whole world is richer, humanity is better, because of this beautiful constellation of nations...working towards a common future."

“In America, we believe in the majesty of freedom and the dignity of the individual,” he declared. “We believe in self-government, and rule of law. We prize the culture that sustained our liberty. Sovereign and independent nations are the only vehicle where freedom has ever survived. And so, we must protect our sovereignty and our cherished Independence above all.”

He then went back to the potential of the world, if only they would emulate America's vision.

"Our task is not to erase it, but embrace it ... to find the will to make our nations greater, our regions safer, and the world better.  To unleash this incredible potential ... we must defend the foundations that make it all possible.  Sovereign and independent nations are the only vehicle where freedom has ever survived, democracy has ever endured (never mind that the U.S. is supposed to be a republic, not a democracy, but I digress), where peace has ever prospered, and so we must protect our sovereignty, and our cherished independence above all. When we do, we will find new avenues for cooperation unfolding before us, we will find new passion for peacemaking rising within us, we will find new purpose, new resolve, and new spirit flourishing all around us, and making this a more beautiful world in which to live.  So together, let us choose a future of patriotism, prosperity and pride.  Let us choose peace and freedom over domination and defeat.  And, let us come here to this place to stand for our people and their nations.  Forever strong.  Forever sovereign.  Forever just.  And, forever thankful for the grace and the goodness and the glory of God.  (the secularist's heads surely exploded at that moment)  Thank you, God Bless You, and God Bless the Nations of the World."

The applause at the end made me wonder.  Did Trump's tremendous speech drill through their socialist hearts and their humanist love for a leftist agenda?  Were there enough low-hanging fruit in the room that once again, as he has been doing bit by bit, were melting, which gave Trump room to earn even a greater share of respect of the world?

Honest.  Genuine.  Resolved.  That is our President of the United States, and surely, there are those out there who are beginning to notice.






-- Political Pistachio Conservative News and Commentary

Saturday, September 29, 2018

Constitution Radio: Kavanaugh, U.N. and Los Angeles

Constitution Radio, Saturdays 1:00 - 3:00 pm Pacific, LIVE

Miss the show?  Now problem.  Visit our Archived Podcast Page

Host Douglas V. Gibbs will be at a Constitution Luncheon in Los Angeles, today, so he left Dennis Jackson and Alex Ferguson to host the program.

AllStar/CARSTAR Collision Topics of the Week:
  • Trump to the U.N. General Assembly

Conservative Voice Radio: Secrets and Lies


Conservative Voice Radio is on at 8:00 AM on KMET 1490-AM, hosted by Douglas V. Gibbs, and co-hosted by Glenn, Diane and Jan of the Banning-Beaumont-Cherry Valley Tea Party.  If you missed the program, listen to the archived version on our podcast page.

Today's Topics:

  • Kavanaugh
  • Local Candidates and Propositions
  • John Cox Shames Jerry Brown into DMV Audit
  • Mandatory White Privilege Training
  • Google, China, Full Surveillance, Trustworthiness Points
  • GOP Enthusiasm in 2018
  • Terrorism in America
  • An Investigator Visited the Tea Party

MTRA Meeting: Ted Baehr, Movie Guide

Friday, September 28, 2018

Upcoming Schedule: Douglas V. Gibbs/Constitution/Southern California

Douglas V. Gibbs

As always, I keep a pretty busy schedule, and if it is possible for you to come out and see me at any of these events, I would love to see you.  Some of them I am the speaker, and some of them I am simply an attendee . . .

Saturday, September 29, 8:00 am: Conservative Voice Radio, KMET 1490-AM, www.kmet1490am.com, I am the host of the Pass Area's local radio program, sponsored by the Banning-Beaumont-Cherry Valley Tea Party, and on the show I am joined by members of the Tea Party, Glenn, Jan, and Diane (with George at the engineering board).

Saturday, September 29, 12:00 pm: Constitution Day Seminar Luncheon, The Proud Bird Restaurant (Mission Room), 11022 Aviation Blvd., Los Angeles, CA --- $45 Tickets, www.slaira.com --- I will be a member of a panel that includes other Constitutionalists like myself, Steve Jackson, and Keith Hardine.  I will be in Arcadia after that event meeting with some folks from the Epoch Times Newspaper.  I will keep you updated on how that goes.

Saturday, September 29, 1:00 pm: Constitution Radio with Douglas V. Gibbs will be without me during this episode since I will be in L.A. on a Constitution Day Seminar Luncheon Panel.  The KMET 1490-AM live program will still air, however, hosted by my usual co-hosts, Dennis Jackson, and Alex Ferguson.

Monday, October 1, 7:00 pm: Unite IE monthly meeting, La Casa Ortega Restaurant, 1690 Spruce St., Riverside.  I attend as a member, and as President of the Constitution Association.

Tuesday, October 2, 8:00 am: Banning Beaumont Cherry Valley Tea Party Breakfast Meeting, The Farms' House Restaurant, 6261 Joshua Palmer Way, Banning ---- I will be in attendance, as I am each Tuesday Morning.  As a side note I attend a breakfast meeting in Murrieta/Temecula on Monday Mornings, but it is a by-invitation-only local conservative weekly meeting.

Tuesday, October 2, 6:00 pm: Corona Constitution Class, AllStar/CARSTAR Collision, 522 Railroad Street, Corona.  We will be be getting into Article II, which involves the Executive Branch.

Wednesday, October 3, 6:00 pm: Temecula Constitution Class, Riverside County GOP Headquarters, 28120 Jefferson Ave., Temecula (At the rear of the shopping center, next to Dark Helmet Tattoo).  As a note, I teach homeschool government and economics courses at 1:00 pm on Wednesdays.  Contact me at constitutionspeaker at yahoo.com for more information.

Other Important Dates:

Saturday, October 6, 2018, 9:00 am: Corona/Norco/Eastvale Tea Party Meeting, 190 E. Rincon, Corona

Saturday, October 6, 2018, 5:00 pm: Constitution Association Monthly Meeting, 28120 Jefferson Ave, Temecula

-- Political Pistachio Conservative News and Commentary


Thursday, September 27, 2018

James Woods, Paul Joseph Watson, and Social Media Censorship

By Douglas V. Gibbs
Author, Speaker, Instructor, Radio Host




-- Political Pistachio Conservative News and Commentary

Brett Kavanaugh and Christine Ford: Character and the Truth

By Douglas V. Gibbs
Author, Speaker, Instructor, Radio Host

Politically, I want to believe that Judge Brett Kavanaugh is innocent of sexual assault, and that Christine Blasey Ford is nothing more and nothing less than a Democrat Party operative participating in a well-planned conspiracy not only against Kavanaugh, but against all things involved with President Donald J. Trump.

Personally, I understand that sexual abuse is a disease that has infested our world.  I do not wish to take lightly the possibility that Christine Blasey Ford was in fact the victim of a sexual assault.

Logically, based on the detail of the account being described by Christine Blasey Ford, I believe that somebody did in fact sexually assault her at one time in her life, and likely at a party during her high school years, and very possibly while she was only fifteen years old, as she has testified.  However, I also believe Brett Kavanaugh that he is positive that he did not sexually assault Christine Ford, or anyone else, for that matter, be it in high school, college, or at any other time during his life.  As he explained to Martha McCallum of Fox News, Kavanaugh was a virgin throughout high school, and for a number of years afterward.  Considering the Christian Faith that Kavanaugh has exhibited, and the testimony of people who know him regarding his character, his decision not to engage in sexual intercourse outside of wedlock early in life is no surprise, should be applauded, and should be believed.

The liberal left Democrats have argued against the possibility that a man, any man, would be willing to remain pure well into his adulthood, not just because they don't believe them, but because they cannot fathom anyone in this day and age of sexual promiscuity, and a revolving door of sexual lifestyles and behaviors, holding on to that kind of purity throughout those years in which most guys, it seems, are incredibly sexually active.

In short, I believe Ford was sexually assaulted, but I do not believe she actually remembers who it was; or she does remember, but as a Democrat operative, she wants to pin it on Kavanaugh.  It's a win-win for her.  She has the opportunity to vent and release her anger and horrible fears through this psychological exercise before the U.S. Senate, but at the same time, fry the nominee of a President she likely hates with a passion due to his unwillingness to enable the forward thrust of America towards a socialist progressive nightmarish dystopia.

The Democrats are upset because they believe that Republicans are rejecting Ford's claim.  How unfeeling of the Republicans in the face of such a horrible claim.  "Her claim must be considered," they have proclaimed.

We are not doubting that Ford may have been sexually assaulted.  We are not doubting that sexual assault is rampant in our society, and that the victims of sexual assault deserve to be heard, and they deserve a platform from which to speak from.  But, when it comes to the Kavanaugh hearing, I believe the Democrats are jumping to conclusions for political expediency, and they are tossing aside an important American ethical practice best described as "innocent until proven guilty."  I agree that sexual assault and violence is something we would like to put an end to in this country.  It's a noble goal.  But, let's not execute the character of potentially innocent people in the process because of the Democrat Party's affliction of Trump Derangement Syndrome.

We can't afford to assassinate due process or the rule of law because we are desperate to cooperate with the cries of a segment of society that has been sexually assaulted at various times during their lives.  We can't afford to dismiss a very qualified judicial nominee who I believe was honest when he said he did not sexually assault Christine Ford, and in fact had had no sexual relations with a woman during that time period in his life.  And, let's be honest, we know that the Republican Party can't afford to allow the Kavanaugh confirmation hearing to go much longer because, as Rush Limbaugh has so plainly laid out for us, if the GOP doesn't get the Kavanaugh appointment resolved by election day, it could cost the party a great number of seats in representation.

With all of that said, I do not expect a blue wave if the Kavanaugh hearing is not completed by election day.  Overall, I think most voters understand the deceptive and maligned tactics the Democrat Party is using as they do everything they can to hang on to the last remnants of power they believe is in their fists.  If anything could derail the Republican Party's hold of either House of Congress, or soil Trump's presidency, it would be if Trump signs any budget or funding bill (such as the current cromnibus bill) without having funding included in it for his Mexican-American Border Wall.  He said he would not sign a bill of that nature without funding for the wall, so if he does sign something like the cromnibus package, and his wall remains unpaid, it will be his "read my lips" moment.


-- Political Pistachio Conservative News and Commentary

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Temecula Constitution Class: State Prohibitions

Wednesday Schedule, both at the Riverside Republican Party Headquarters at 28120 Jefferson Ave., Temecula, CA . . .

4:00 am, Constitution Association Weekly Meeting

6:00 pm, Temecula Constitution Class

Here's the handout:

Constitution Class Handout
Instructor: Douglas V. Gibbs
douglasvgibbs@reagan.com
 
 
 
Lesson 04
 
Legislative Prohibitions
 
Prohibitions to the Federal Government, and the States
 
 
- Prohibitions to the Federal Government
 
The Slave Trade and Immigration
 
The common misconception is that Article I, Section 9, Clause 1 is obsolete. The abolition of slavery in the United States made the clause obsolete, we are told. In reality, only a part of the clause is not longer in force. The clause addressed the Atlantic slave trade, and the migration of people into the United States. Slavery was abolished by Amendment 13 so the part of Article I, Section 9, Clause 1 that addresses slavery is obsolete. But is the part about migration still in force?
 
One could say that the "migration" portion of the clause is still in force because the 13th Amendment only addresses slavery. The standard belief among historians is that the entire clause is no longer in force.
 
The ramifications of this clause may indeed reach into today's issue regarding illegal immigration.
 
Why would the Founding Fathers include a mention of migration in a clause that is essentially geared toward the abolition of the importation of slaves?
 
The word "importation" in this clause applies wholly to slaves.
 
The word, migration, then, would seem to apply wholly to non-slaves.
 
The intention was that since the Constitution, as the contract that created our federal government, is a document that grants powers to the federal government, and that all authorities not expressly delegated, are reserved to the States, it was expected that immigration would remain as an issue that would be addressed by the States.
 
Other national governments prohibited migration as they saw fit, so the Founding Fathers determined that the new United States Government must have that same authority.
 
According to the clause, however, from the year 1808 Congress would possess the power to stop the importation of slaves, as well as the migration of people the Congress felt must be prohibited from entering this country as immigrants, through the Congress' power of legislation.
 
The Constitution was written specifically in regards to the federal government. All powers originally belonged to the States. Some of those authorities were granted to the federal government for the purpose of protecting and preserving the union. Therefore, all authorities regarding immigration originally belonged to the States, and before 1808 the States had sole authority regarding all immigration issues.
 
In Article I, Section 9, the federal government was given the opportunity to regulate immigration, but not until 1808. The reason for delaying the power to prevent migration were, to be simply put, to give the States twenty years to attract as many people as possible without Congressional regulatory consideration. After all, at this time in history we had immense and almost immeasurable territory, peopled by not more than two and a half million inhabitants. Therefore, migration was encouraged, especially of the kind of people that would bring a benefit to the new nation. The immigration of able, skilful, and industrious Europeans was encouraged.
 
Note that this clause gives the federal government the authority to prohibit certain persons from migrating into the United States, but it does not give the federal government the authority to dictate to the States which persons the States must admit inside their borders.
 
Habeas Corpus
 
Article I, Section 9, Clause 2 states that "The Privilege of the Writ of Habeas Corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in Cases of Rebellion or Invasion the public Safety may require it."
 
Habeas corpus is a legal term that means quite literally in Latin: "you may have the body." In legal terms, Habeas corpus is a writ that releases a prisoner from unlawful detention. Habeas corpus comes from British common law, and has historically served as an important legal instrument safeguarding individual freedom against arbitrary state action that includes detention without the due process of law.
 
A writ of habeas corpus is a summons with the force of a court order that demands a prisoner be taken before the court, and that the custodian present proof of authority, allowing the court to determine if the custodian has lawful authority to detain the person. If the custodian does not have authority to detain the prisoner, then the prisoner must be released from custody.
 
Habeas corpus is designed to protect citizens against any detention that is forbidden by law. The U.S. Constitution specifically includes the habeas procedure, and instructs the Congress not to suspend such unless the detainment is the result of a "Rebellion or Invasion," adding that "the public Safety may require it."
 
Normally, habeas corpus proceedings accompany questions of jurisdiction and authorities of the court that sentenced a defendant. The suspension of habeas corpus has recently become an issue regarding the detainment of terrorists, but one must ask if the public safety requires the suspension of habeas corpus in the case of terrorists, as prescribed in the Constitution. Secondly, one must consider that the Constitution applies to American citizens, so the question on whether or not Article I, Section 9, Clause 2 applies to captured combatants seems to be a moot point since it is obvious that the detained are not American Citizens, and therefore are not protected by Constitutional protections. Also, remember that Congress has the sole authority to make rules regarding captures on land and water as per Article I, Section 8, Clause 11.
 
Bills of Attainder
 
A Bill of Attainder is when the legislature declares the guilt of a person or group of persons, and punishes them without due process (the benefit of a trial).
 
In Britain, bills of attainder were used as a convenient way for the King to convict subjects of crimes and confiscate their property without the bother of a trial, and without the need for a conviction or indeed any evidence at all. Such actions were seen as tyrannical because often this power was used against political enemies, and the Founding Fathers did not wish to give the new federal government those same kinds of powers. Some states, prior to the Constitution, did use attainders against British loyalists, but the practice all but disappeared after the Constitution so specifically forbid the use of attainders by the U.S. Congress, and the States.
 
Prohibiting the use of bills of attainder serves a number of purposes. One purpose is that by disallowing the bills of attainder the separation of powers is reinforced. By disallowing bills of attainder, it literally forbids the legislature from performing a judicial function. Another purpose is in regard to the protection of the concept of due process, which was later reinforced by the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution.
 
The true danger of a bill of attainder is that such a legislative act inflicts punishment without a judicial trial, and takes away the life, liberty or property of the target.
 
Ex Post Facto law
 
Ex post facto Law is literally retroactive law, or a law that retroactively changes the legal consequences (or status) of actions committed or relationships that existed prior to the enactment of the law. Ex post facto law could criminalize actions that were legal when committed, or in the case of amnesty laws, decriminalize certain acts or alleviate possible punishments. Generally speaking, ex post facto laws are seen as a violation of the rule of law as it applies in a free and democratic society. Ex post facto laws are expressly forbidden by the United States Constitution.
 
Direct Taxation
 
The U.S. Constitution originally forbade direct taxation upon the people by the federal government. Taxation of the people by the federal government could only be laid in relation to population. When the idea for the income tax came to fruition, an amendment (16th) had to be passed to allow for the direct taxation of the people without dependence upon the enumeration of the population.
 
Article I, Section 9, Clause 4 states that in addition to direct taxation, the federal government was forbidden from using Capitation. Capitation is a head tax. A Poll Tax is a kind of head tax. In the context of the period, any tax that singles out groups both directly and indirectly regardless of possession of lands or personal property is Capitation. Since Article I, Section 9 is a prohibitory section, the specific call by the Founding Fathers in that clause was that there shall be No Capitation, which included No Poll Tax.
 
In early New England, in keeping with traditions from the homeland, capitation (caput, meaning head), or poll taxes, were common. These taxes were levied as a way to manipulate the people for the "good of the government."
 
Alexander Hamilton, though condemning capitation taxes in his Federalist Papers writings, was in favor of "head taxes" for emergency revenue reasons. He felt that since sources for revenue were so few, if the government needed to expand for any reason, the ability to lay head taxes, or direct taxation, needed to be an option. However, most of the Founding Fathers disagreed, not only because of their belief that taxation must be indirect and small, but also because of their opinion that the federal government must remain limited to the few authorities granted to it by the U.S. Constitution.
 
Article I, Section 9, Clause 4 forbids Congress to lay a tax upon individuals except uniformly, and in proportion to the census provided for in Article I, Section 2, Clause 3, where this subject is first brought up. In other words, direct taxation was forbidden. What the federal government did was tax the States, based on proportion to the census, or enumeration. The States then taxed the people in order to pay the tax to the federal government. The method of taxation by the States was left up to each individual State. The federal government, in this way, used indirect taxation to tax the people.
 
As we have learned, the U.S. Constitution is not designed to necessarily tell the federal government what it can't do as much as it is designed to tell the federal government what few authorities it has. But the Founders felt this to be so important that in addition to not giving direct taxation to the Federal Government as an authority, they felt they must also spell it out that the Federal Government cannot tax in this manner in any form. This clause restricts the Congress a lot more because it is prohibitive. Article 1, Section 8 provides a list of "enumerated powers," but knowing that politicians would bend and twist meanings to gain more power, Article 1, Section 9 was designed to spell out some very specific things the Congress is prohibited from doing (such as direct taxation and capitation taxes).
 
Preference in Commerce
 
Article I, Section 9, Clause 6 states that "No Preference shall be given by any Regulation of Commerce or Revenue to the Ports of one State over those of another: nor shall Vessels bound to, or from, one State, be obliged to enter, clear, or pay Duties in another."
 
This proposal was placed before the Constitutional Convention by the delegates from Maryland, their fear being that congressional legislation might prefer Chesapeake Bay ports of Virginia to those of their State. Under the Articles of Confederation, each State was free to impose duties and make regulations to the disadvantage of others, and it was desired that equality in commerce be maintained in the future. This also gives us a clue to the intentions of the Commerce Clause in Article I, Section 8. The Founding Fathers did not wish to give the Federal Government control over commerce, only the ability to ensure that commerce was maintained in an equitable manner in regards to the several States.
 
U.S. Treasury
 
Article I, Section 9, Clause 7 reads: "No Money shall be drawn from the Treasury, but in Consequence of Appropriations made by Law; and a regular Statement and Account of the Receipts and Expenditures of all public Money shall be published from time to time."
 
This clause was inspired by the lessons learned in regards to merry old England. The Founding Fathers did not believe it should be in the power of the Executive alone, or of the legislature alone, to raise or spend the money at will. Article I, Section 7, Clause 1 requires that all bills for raising money must originate in the House of Representatives; but they must then pass the Senate and be signed by the President. In 1842 Congress began to make appropriations by joint resolution; but as that also must be approved by both Houses, and signed by the President, there is no real difference. Also, in the interest of transparency to the people, the records of all monetary transactions both of receipts and expenditures must be made available for public scrutiny.
 
Divided Allegiance
 
Article I, Section 9, Clause 8 reads: "No Title of Nobility shall be granted by the United States: And no Person holding any Office of Profit or Trust under them, shall, without the Consent of the Congress, accept of any present, Emolument, Office, or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince, or foreign State."
 
The Founding Fathers did not believe there should be any foreign influences in the affairs of our government.
 
This provision was taken from a provision in the first section of Article VI of the Articles of Confederation. It permitted persons holding office under a State to accept, with the consent of Congress, the objectionable gifts or distinctions; but the constitutions of at least two of the States at that time forbade them altogether. This republic, being a nation born as a result of the tyranny of a monarchy, should not grant titles of nobility, that much was easily understood. Nobility betrayed the trust and honor of the people through the use of prestige and favoritism. This was the kind of government that did not protect the liberties of the people.
 
Jefferson, as President, accepted from Alexander I of Russia a bust of that Emperor, which he said would be "one of the most valued ornaments of the retreat I am preparing for myself at my native home." He said that he had laid it down as a law of his official conduct not to accept anything but books, pamphlets, or other things of minor value; but his "particular esteem" from the Emperor "places his image in my mind above the scope of the law." However, without the consent of Congress, who was the final determining factor, he could not have accepted that gift.
 
In 1810 Congress proposed an amendment, the original Thirteenth amendment (some would call it the lost 13th Amendment because some records showed it was ratified, then suddenly disappeared - as explained below), to add a heavy penalty to this clause by this wording:
 
"If any citizen of the United States shall accept, claim, receive or retain any title of nobility or honor, or shall, without the consent of Congress, accept and retain any present, pension, office or emolument of any kind whatever, from any emperor, king, prince or foreign power, such person shall cease to be a citizen of the United States, and shall be incapable of holding office of trust or profit under them, or either of them."
 
The people were told that the proposed amendment lacked the necessary ratifying votes. Ongoing research has shown that the proposed amendment was indeed properly ratified, the State Department WAS notified, and the amendment was on the books and records of the various States until at least 1876. From 1810 to 1812, twelve states ratified this amendment. The War of 1812 destroyed the library of Congress and these documents were thought destroyed, but in 1994 it was discovered they still exist after a chance discovery in Maine in 1983 made historians aware of the existence of the original 13th Amendment.
 
Terms:
 
Indirect Taxation: An indirect tax is contrasted with a direct tax which is collected directly by government from the people. An indirect tax, for example, may increase the price of a good so that consumers are actually paying the tax by paying more for the products. Another example of indirect taxation is for one entity to tax another entity, and then the second entity taxing the people to recoup the taxes it paid.
 
Joint Resolution: A joint resolution is a legislative measure requiring approval by the Senate and the House and then is presented to the President for approval or disapproval. There is generally no legal difference between a joint resolution and a bill. Laws enacted by virtue of a joint resolution are not distinguished from laws enacted by a bill. Constitutional amendments are passed by joint resolutions, which are instead presented to the States for ratification. Resolutions are often temporary in nature.
 
Questions for Discussion:
 
1. How was immigration regarded by the Founding Fathers?
 
2. Why is Habeas Corpus so important?
 
3. If the Founding Fathers disagreed with divided allegiance, what would they think of dual citizenship?
 
Resources:
 
Articles of Confederation, March 1, 1781; http://avalon.law.yale.edu/18th_century/artconf.asp
 
Larry Schweikart and Michael Allen, A Patriot's History of the United States; New York: Sentinel (2004).
 
Madison's Notes on the Constitutional Convention, Avalon Project, Yale University: http://avalon.law.yale.edu/subject_menus/debcont.asp
 
The Original 13th Article of Amendment; American Patriot Friend's Network:
http://www.apfn.org/apfn/13th.htm Thomas J. DiLorenzo, Hamilton's Curse; New York: Three Rivers Press (2008).
 
- Prohibitions to the States
 
The articles in the U.S. Constitution all apply to the federal government unless otherwise noted. Article I, Section 10, notes otherwise. Each clause begins with the words "No State shall," making Article I, Section 10 prohibitive to the States.
 
Article I, Section 10, Clause 1 begins by disallowing the States to enter into any treaty, alliance, or Confederation. The goal was to keep the union intact, have all dealings with foreign governments go through the federal government, and to ensure there was no divided loyalties among the States. Treaties and alliances are external issues.
 
The disallowance of the States entering into a confederation was the argument used against the Confederacy during the American Civil War. President Lincoln considered the southern states seceding and joining into a confederation to be unlawful, partly due to this clause in the Constitution. However, by seceding, the States no longer fell under the jurisdiction of the Constitution, making the Confederacy a legal arrangement.
 
No State could grant letters of Marque and Reprisal, or coin money. These authorities were granted to the federal government in Article I, Section 8. States were not allowed to coin money so that they would not use currency as a means to gain an unfair advantage over each other in relation to interstate commerce.
 
Article I, Section 10 prohibits the States from emitting bills of credit. Bills of credit take two forms. Bills of credit are receipts for currency, such as a treasury note, and bills of credit can be items of credit such as bonds. What this means is that the States could not issue paper money, nor could States issue instruments of debt. In other words, the States were not allowed to borrow money. Today, all but two States of the union are in debt. The State deficits are in violation of the U.S. Constitution.
 
The States were also disallowed from passing bills of attainder, ex post facto law, or passing any law that would impair the obligation of contracts. The States, as the federal government, could not issue any title of Nobility. Ex post facto law has become a large concern in recent politics. Ex post facto law is retroactive law. By disallowing the passage of ex post facto law, the States (just like the federal government) cannot constitutionally pass laws retroactively. A gun legal at the time of purchase cannot be made retroactively illegal. Immigrants who entered the State illegally cannot be made retroactively legal. A tax cannot be retroactively imposed, creating a sudden large balance of tax due.
 
States are allowed to tax imports or exports, but only with the consent of Congress. Because States are tasked with having their own inspection laws, any costs necessary for executing those inspection laws may be recouped through imposts or Duties without the consent of Congress.
 
"The net produce of all duties and imposts, laid by any State on imports or exports, shall be for the use of the Treasury of the United States." In other words, the States cannot over tax imports and exports. They are only to charge taxes necessary to cover their costs, such as "executing inspection laws." Any net produce, or what would be considered "profit" in the private sector, goes to the U.S. Treasury. All of the States inspection laws, or other laws regarding imports and exports, are also subject to revision and control by the Congress.
 
Having a military is also forbidden to the States in time of peace, except with the consent of Congress. However, if a State is invaded, or the State feels they are in imminent danger, they are allowed to form a military. Currently, 23 States have State Defense Forces, or "State Militias." In recent years, State Defense Forces have proven vital to homeland security and emergency response efforts.
 
 
 
Questions for Discussion:
 
1. What does the various prohibitions to the States have in common?
 
2. How do the prohibitions to the States relate to concepts like the Tenth Amendment?
 
Resources:
 
21st-Century Militia: State Defense Forces and Homeland Security, Heritage Foundation: http://www.heritage.org/Research/Reports/2010/10/The-21st-Century-Militia-State-Defense-Forces-and-Homeland-Security
 
Madison's Notes on the Constitutional Convention, Avalon Project, Yale University: http://avalon.law.yale.edu/subject_menus/debcont.asp
 
UNITED STATES v. COMSTOCK (No. 08-1224), Clarence Thomas Dissenting Opinion (State Sovereignty): http://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/html/08-1224.ZD.html(2010)
 
 
Copyright: Douglas V. Gibbs, 2015

Alien Anthropologists, Coming to a Constitution Assoc. Meeting Near You


Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Corona Constitution Class: Government Prohibitions

Tuesday Night, 6:00 pm, Corona Constitution Class, AllStar/CARSTAR Collision, 522 Railroad Street, Corona, CA

Here's the handout:

Constitution Class Handout
Instructor: Douglas V. Gibbs
douglasvgibbs@reagan.com
 
 
 
Lesson 04
 
Legislative Prohibitions
 
Prohibitions to the Federal Government, and the States
 
 
- Prohibitions to the Federal Government
 
The Slave Trade and Immigration
 
The common misconception is that Article I, Section 9, Clause 1 is obsolete. The abolition of slavery in the United States made the clause obsolete, we are told. In reality, only a part of the clause is not longer in force. The clause addressed the Atlantic slave trade, and the migration of people into the United States. Slavery was abolished by Amendment 13 so the part of Article I, Section 9, Clause 1 that addresses slavery is obsolete. But is the part about migration still in force?
 
One could say that the "migration" portion of the clause is still in force because the 13th Amendment only addresses slavery. The standard belief among historians is that the entire clause is no longer in force.
 
The ramifications of this clause may indeed reach into today's issue regarding illegal immigration.
 
Why would the Founding Fathers include a mention of migration in a clause that is essentially geared toward the abolition of the importation of slaves?
 
The word "importation" in this clause applies wholly to slaves.
 
The word, migration, then, would seem to apply wholly to non-slaves.
 
The intention was that since the Constitution, as the contract that created our federal government, is a document that grants powers to the federal government, and that all authorities not expressly delegated, are reserved to the States, it was expected that immigration would remain as an issue that would be addressed by the States.
 
Other national governments prohibited migration as they saw fit, so the Founding Fathers determined that the new United States Government must have that same authority.
 
According to the clause, however, from the year 1808 Congress would possess the power to stop the importation of slaves, as well as the migration of people the Congress felt must be prohibited from entering this country as immigrants, through the Congress' power of legislation.
 
The Constitution was written specifically in regards to the federal government. All powers originally belonged to the States. Some of those authorities were granted to the federal government for the purpose of protecting and preserving the union. Therefore, all authorities regarding immigration originally belonged to the States, and before 1808 the States had sole authority regarding all immigration issues.
 
In Article I, Section 9, the federal government was given the opportunity to regulate immigration, but not until 1808. The reason for delaying the power to prevent migration were, to be simply put, to give the States twenty years to attract as many people as possible without Congressional regulatory consideration. After all, at this time in history we had immense and almost immeasurable territory, peopled by not more than two and a half million inhabitants. Therefore, migration was encouraged, especially of the kind of people that would bring a benefit to the new nation. The immigration of able, skilful, and industrious Europeans was encouraged.
 
Note that this clause gives the federal government the authority to prohibit certain persons from migrating into the United States, but it does not give the federal government the authority to dictate to the States which persons the States must admit inside their borders.
 
Habeas Corpus
 
Article I, Section 9, Clause 2 states that "The Privilege of the Writ of Habeas Corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in Cases of Rebellion or Invasion the public Safety may require it."
 
Habeas corpus is a legal term that means quite literally in Latin: "you may have the body." In legal terms, Habeas corpus is a writ that releases a prisoner from unlawful detention. Habeas corpus comes from British common law, and has historically served as an important legal instrument safeguarding individual freedom against arbitrary state action that includes detention without the due process of law.
 
A writ of habeas corpus is a summons with the force of a court order that demands a prisoner be taken before the court, and that the custodian present proof of authority, allowing the court to determine if the custodian has lawful authority to detain the person. If the custodian does not have authority to detain the prisoner, then the prisoner must be released from custody.
 
Habeas corpus is designed to protect citizens against any detention that is forbidden by law. The U.S. Constitution specifically includes the habeas procedure, and instructs the Congress not to suspend such unless the detainment is the result of a "Rebellion or Invasion," adding that "the public Safety may require it."
 
Normally, habeas corpus proceedings accompany questions of jurisdiction and authorities of the court that sentenced a defendant. The suspension of habeas corpus has recently become an issue regarding the detainment of terrorists, but one must ask if the public safety requires the suspension of habeas corpus in the case of terrorists, as prescribed in the Constitution. Secondly, one must consider that the Constitution applies to American citizens, so the question on whether or not Article I, Section 9, Clause 2 applies to captured combatants seems to be a moot point since it is obvious that the detained are not American Citizens, and therefore are not protected by Constitutional protections. Also, remember that Congress has the sole authority to make rules regarding captures on land and water as per Article I, Section 8, Clause 11.
 
Bills of Attainder
 
A Bill of Attainder is when the legislature declares the guilt of a person or group of persons, and punishes them without due process (the benefit of a trial).
 
In Britain, bills of attainder were used as a convenient way for the King to convict subjects of crimes and confiscate their property without the bother of a trial, and without the need for a conviction or indeed any evidence at all. Such actions were seen as tyrannical because often this power was used against political enemies, and the Founding Fathers did not wish to give the new federal government those same kinds of powers. Some states, prior to the Constitution, did use attainders against British loyalists, but the practice all but disappeared after the Constitution so specifically forbid the use of attainders by the U.S. Congress, and the States.
 
Prohibiting the use of bills of attainder serves a number of purposes. One purpose is that by disallowing the bills of attainder the separation of powers is reinforced. By disallowing bills of attainder, it literally forbids the legislature from performing a judicial function. Another purpose is in regard to the protection of the concept of due process, which was later reinforced by the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution.
 
The true danger of a bill of attainder is that such a legislative act inflicts punishment without a judicial trial, and takes away the life, liberty or property of the target.
 
Ex Post Facto law
 
Ex post facto Law is literally retroactive law, or a law that retroactively changes the legal consequences (or status) of actions committed or relationships that existed prior to the enactment of the law. Ex post facto law could criminalize actions that were legal when committed, or in the case of amnesty laws, decriminalize certain acts or alleviate possible punishments. Generally speaking, ex post facto laws are seen as a violation of the rule of law as it applies in a free and democratic society. Ex post facto laws are expressly forbidden by the United States Constitution.
 
Direct Taxation
 
The U.S. Constitution originally forbade direct taxation upon the people by the federal government. Taxation of the people by the federal government could only be laid in relation to population. When the idea for the income tax came to fruition, an amendment (16th) had to be passed to allow for the direct taxation of the people without dependence upon the enumeration of the population.
 
Article I, Section 9, Clause 4 states that in addition to direct taxation, the federal government was forbidden from using Capitation. Capitation is a head tax. A Poll Tax is a kind of head tax. In the context of the period, any tax that singles out groups both directly and indirectly regardless of possession of lands or personal property is Capitation. Since Article I, Section 9 is a prohibitory section, the specific call by the Founding Fathers in that clause was that there shall be No Capitation, which included No Poll Tax.
 
In early New England, in keeping with traditions from the homeland, capitation (caput, meaning head), or poll taxes, were common. These taxes were levied as a way to manipulate the people for the "good of the government."
 
Alexander Hamilton, though condemning capitation taxes in his Federalist Papers writings, was in favor of "head taxes" for emergency revenue reasons. He felt that since sources for revenue were so few, if the government needed to expand for any reason, the ability to lay head taxes, or direct taxation, needed to be an option. However, most of the Founding Fathers disagreed, not only because of their belief that taxation must be indirect and small, but also because of their opinion that the federal government must remain limited to the few authorities granted to it by the U.S. Constitution.
 
Article I, Section 9, Clause 4 forbids Congress to lay a tax upon individuals except uniformly, and in proportion to the census provided for in Article I, Section 2, Clause 3, where this subject is first brought up. In other words, direct taxation was forbidden. What the federal government did was tax the States, based on proportion to the census, or enumeration. The States then taxed the people in order to pay the tax to the federal government. The method of taxation by the States was left up to each individual State. The federal government, in this way, used indirect taxation to tax the people.
 
As we have learned, the U.S. Constitution is not designed to necessarily tell the federal government what it can't do as much as it is designed to tell the federal government what few authorities it has. But the Founders felt this to be so important that in addition to not giving direct taxation to the Federal Government as an authority, they felt they must also spell it out that the Federal Government cannot tax in this manner in any form. This clause restricts the Congress a lot more because it is prohibitive. Article 1, Section 8 provides a list of "enumerated powers," but knowing that politicians would bend and twist meanings to gain more power, Article 1, Section 9 was designed to spell out some very specific things the Congress is prohibited from doing (such as direct taxation and capitation taxes).
 
Preference in Commerce
 
Article I, Section 9, Clause 6 states that "No Preference shall be given by any Regulation of Commerce or Revenue to the Ports of one State over those of another: nor shall Vessels bound to, or from, one State, be obliged to enter, clear, or pay Duties in another."
 
This proposal was placed before the Constitutional Convention by the delegates from Maryland, their fear being that congressional legislation might prefer Chesapeake Bay ports of Virginia to those of their State. Under the Articles of Confederation, each State was free to impose duties and make regulations to the disadvantage of others, and it was desired that equality in commerce be maintained in the future. This also gives us a clue to the intentions of the Commerce Clause in Article I, Section 8. The Founding Fathers did not wish to give the Federal Government control over commerce, only the ability to ensure that commerce was maintained in an equitable manner in regards to the several States.
 
U.S. Treasury
 
Article I, Section 9, Clause 7 reads: "No Money shall be drawn from the Treasury, but in Consequence of Appropriations made by Law; and a regular Statement and Account of the Receipts and Expenditures of all public Money shall be published from time to time."
 
This clause was inspired by the lessons learned in regards to merry old England. The Founding Fathers did not believe it should be in the power of the Executive alone, or of the legislature alone, to raise or spend the money at will. Article I, Section 7, Clause 1 requires that all bills for raising money must originate in the House of Representatives; but they must then pass the Senate and be signed by the President. In 1842 Congress began to make appropriations by joint resolution; but as that also must be approved by both Houses, and signed by the President, there is no real difference. Also, in the interest of transparency to the people, the records of all monetary transactions both of receipts and expenditures must be made available for public scrutiny.
 
Divided Allegiance
 
Article I, Section 9, Clause 8 reads: "No Title of Nobility shall be granted by the United States: And no Person holding any Office of Profit or Trust under them, shall, without the Consent of the Congress, accept of any present, Emolument, Office, or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince, or foreign State."
 
The Founding Fathers did not believe there should be any foreign influences in the affairs of our government.
 
This provision was taken from a provision in the first section of Article VI of the Articles of Confederation. It permitted persons holding office under a State to accept, with the consent of Congress, the objectionable gifts or distinctions; but the constitutions of at least two of the States at that time forbade them altogether. This republic, being a nation born as a result of the tyranny of a monarchy, should not grant titles of nobility, that much was easily understood. Nobility betrayed the trust and honor of the people through the use of prestige and favoritism. This was the kind of government that did not protect the liberties of the people.
 
Jefferson, as President, accepted from Alexander I of Russia a bust of that Emperor, which he said would be "one of the most valued ornaments of the retreat I am preparing for myself at my native home." He said that he had laid it down as a law of his official conduct not to accept anything but books, pamphlets, or other things of minor value; but his "particular esteem" from the Emperor "places his image in my mind above the scope of the law." However, without the consent of Congress, who was the final determining factor, he could not have accepted that gift.
 
In 1810 Congress proposed an amendment, the original Thirteenth amendment (some would call it the lost 13th Amendment because some records showed it was ratified, then suddenly disappeared - as explained below), to add a heavy penalty to this clause by this wording:
 
"If any citizen of the United States shall accept, claim, receive or retain any title of nobility or honor, or shall, without the consent of Congress, accept and retain any present, pension, office or emolument of any kind whatever, from any emperor, king, prince or foreign power, such person shall cease to be a citizen of the United States, and shall be incapable of holding office of trust or profit under them, or either of them."
 
The people were told that the proposed amendment lacked the necessary ratifying votes. Ongoing research has shown that the proposed amendment was indeed properly ratified, the State Department WAS notified, and the amendment was on the books and records of the various States until at least 1876. From 1810 to 1812, twelve states ratified this amendment. The War of 1812 destroyed the library of Congress and these documents were thought destroyed, but in 1994 it was discovered they still exist after a chance discovery in Maine in 1983 made historians aware of the existence of the original 13th Amendment.
 
Terms:
 
Indirect Taxation: An indirect tax is contrasted with a direct tax which is collected directly by government from the people. An indirect tax, for example, may increase the price of a good so that consumers are actually paying the tax by paying more for the products. Another example of indirect taxation is for one entity to tax another entity, and then the second entity taxing the people to recoup the taxes it paid.
 
Joint Resolution: A joint resolution is a legislative measure requiring approval by the Senate and the House and then is presented to the President for approval or disapproval. There is generally no legal difference between a joint resolution and a bill. Laws enacted by virtue of a joint resolution are not distinguished from laws enacted by a bill. Constitutional amendments are passed by joint resolutions, which are instead presented to the States for ratification. Resolutions are often temporary in nature.
 
Questions for Discussion:
 
1. How was immigration regarded by the Founding Fathers?
 
2. Why is Habeas Corpus so important?
 
3. If the Founding Fathers disagreed with divided allegiance, what would they think of dual citizenship?
 
Resources:
 
Articles of Confederation, March 1, 1781; http://avalon.law.yale.edu/18th_century/artconf.asp
 
Larry Schweikart and Michael Allen, A Patriot's History of the United States; New York: Sentinel (2004).
 
Madison's Notes on the Constitutional Convention, Avalon Project, Yale University: http://avalon.law.yale.edu/subject_menus/debcont.asp
 
The Original 13th Article of Amendment; American Patriot Friend's Network:
http://www.apfn.org/apfn/13th.htm Thomas J. DiLorenzo, Hamilton's Curse; New York: Three Rivers Press (2008).
 
- Prohibitions to the States
 
The articles in the U.S. Constitution all apply to the federal government unless otherwise noted. Article I, Section 10, notes otherwise. Each clause begins with the words "No State shall," making Article I, Section 10 prohibitive to the States.
 
Article I, Section 10, Clause 1 begins by disallowing the States to enter into any treaty, alliance, or Confederation. The goal was to keep the union intact, have all dealings with foreign governments go through the federal government, and to ensure there was no divided loyalties among the States. Treaties and alliances are external issues.
 
The disallowance of the States entering into a confederation was the argument used against the Confederacy during the American Civil War. President Lincoln considered the southern states seceding and joining into a confederation to be unlawful, partly due to this clause in the Constitution. However, by seceding, the States no longer fell under the jurisdiction of the Constitution, making the Confederacy a legal arrangement.
 
No State could grant letters of Marque and Reprisal, or coin money. These authorities were granted to the federal government in Article I, Section 8. States were not allowed to coin money so that they would not use currency as a means to gain an unfair advantage over each other in relation to interstate commerce.
 
Article I, Section 10 prohibits the States from emitting bills of credit. Bills of credit take two forms. Bills of credit are receipts for currency, such as a treasury note, and bills of credit can be items of credit such as bonds. What this means is that the States could not issue paper money, nor could States issue instruments of debt. In other words, the States were not allowed to borrow money. Today, all but two States of the union are in debt. The State deficits are in violation of the U.S. Constitution.
 
The States were also disallowed from passing bills of attainder, ex post facto law, or passing any law that would impair the obligation of contracts. The States, as the federal government, could not issue any title of Nobility. Ex post facto law has become a large concern in recent politics. Ex post facto law is retroactive law. By disallowing the passage of ex post facto law, the States (just like the federal government) cannot constitutionally pass laws retroactively. A gun legal at the time of purchase cannot be made retroactively illegal. Immigrants who entered the State illegally cannot be made retroactively legal. A tax cannot be retroactively imposed, creating a sudden large balance of tax due.
 
States are allowed to tax imports or exports, but only with the consent of Congress. Because States are tasked with having their own inspection laws, any costs necessary for executing those inspection laws may be recouped through imposts or Duties without the consent of Congress.
 
"The net produce of all duties and imposts, laid by any State on imports or exports, shall be for the use of the Treasury of the United States." In other words, the States cannot over tax imports and exports. They are only to charge taxes necessary to cover their costs, such as "executing inspection laws." Any net produce, or what would be considered "profit" in the private sector, goes to the U.S. Treasury. All of the States inspection laws, or other laws regarding imports and exports, are also subject to revision and control by the Congress.
 
Having a military is also forbidden to the States in time of peace, except with the consent of Congress. However, if a State is invaded, or the State feels they are in imminent danger, they are allowed to form a military. Currently, 23 States have State Defense Forces, or "State Militias." In recent years, State Defense Forces have proven vital to homeland security and emergency response efforts.
 
 
 
Questions for Discussion:
 
1. What does the various prohibitions to the States have in common?
 
2. How do the prohibitions to the States relate to concepts like the Tenth Amendment?
 
Resources:
 
21st-Century Militia: State Defense Forces and Homeland Security, Heritage Foundation: http://www.heritage.org/Research/Reports/2010/10/The-21st-Century-Militia-State-Defense-Forces-and-Homeland-Security
 
Madison's Notes on the Constitutional Convention, Avalon Project, Yale University: http://avalon.law.yale.edu/subject_menus/debcont.asp
 
UNITED STATES v. COMSTOCK (No. 08-1224), Clarence Thomas Dissenting Opinion (State Sovereignty): http://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/html/08-1224.ZD.html(2010)
 
 
Copyright: Douglas V. Gibbs, 2015