Monday, December 31, 2007


During the course of my writing I have had both positive and negative comments on my articles. I am willing to listen to both as long as the criticism is tactful. One of the people with whom I have had numerous disagreements is a fellow who goes by the name Doc. He runs a webpage that can be found at

I received an e mail from him this evening. It was sent from the following e mail address, The e mail is attached to this post below. I wish to state clearly and emphatically that I DID NOT WRITE THIS ARTICLE!. Someone, for some reason is trying to either put words into my mouth or set me up for plagiarism.

I sent Doc an e mail explaining this, but I am posting the entire e mail here on my blog in case others may have received the same from me and think that I did in fact write that article. There are ways that I write my articles that do not fit this particular article, besides, it just doesn't sound like the way I write.

So here is the e mail, and I repeat, I did not write this and I DO NOT CLAIM CREDIT FOR IT!


I know you and I had some disagreements over some points, although I can't recall what they were, but I'm willing to forget about them since it's clear you are a Ron Paul supporter.
The only comment I have on the below is that "hispanic" is not a race.
I was born in the late 50's in Miami Florida and have had my fill of hispanics.
They insist on being thought of as "white" (except for the Negros among their ranks.)
It would be difficult to "racially profile" white people since, as you are I'm sure, quite aware, "white" is not a race.


Comments: On Ron Paul's
Interrogation by T. Russert
Sunday on Meet The Press

By Neal Ross

23 December 2007

How anyone listening wasn't instantly converted
into being a Ron Paul fan, had to be a MORON.

When Arizona passed a law stating that anyone hiring an illegal would lose their business license, the protests took it all the way up through two courts, including a federal appeals court. Both courts upheld the law! In other words, the Tenth Amendment still stands, and Arizona, including Sheriff Joe, want no parts of the illegals. Scottsdale, after having one of their cops shot and killed by an illegal, is checking credentials of all police stops, and insist it is not racial profiling, which it isn't. After all, if someone is stopped for a violation, can't speak English, has no insurance or driver's license, and is Hispanic, is it racial profiling to assume they're illegal? On NPR this morning (Monday) a news blurb said that illegals by the thousands were packing up and leaving Arizona, for other states or back to Mexico. Well isn't that grand! Maybe they won't take back America after all, if other states decided to put them to the test, and especially CALIFORNIA.

In Arizona, businessmen, and naturally the ACLU protested the law because they couldn't get cheap labor to compete with whites and blacks who have benefits, insurance, and taxes deducted. Well isn't that too bad now! Since the ACLU stands for the AMERICAN Civil Liberties union, why do they make it the MEXICAN or ILLEGAL Civil Liberties Union? Did anyone ever ask them that poignant question? It seems to me that Americans' civil liberties are being threatened by illegals violating laws, and getting free schools, citizenship for their lids, medical care, and Social Security.

Did you see Ron Paul on "Meet The Press" Sunday? What a triumph! Tim Russert brought up all the quotes from 20 years ago when Ron was running as a Libertarian, and he answered them all explicitly and logically. Anyone watching that show who wasn't instantly converted into a Ron Paul fan is a moron. Russert tried every trick in the book to trap Ron, and it failed miserably. Ron Paul stood his ground perfectly. I wonder if the polls showing him to be 6% are fixed like every other statistic?

Iowa and Colorado both have the "caucus" type of primary, which is so utterly stupid as to defy description. So silly, that I seriously doubt that any results of a caucus state can mean a hill of beans. I quit the Republican inner sanctum when I was considered a traitor by urging the abolition of the caucus system and going to a logical primary system. I'm still a registered Republican, but I honestly don't know why. At any rate, open half day today, and I am out of here at noon. Have a wonderful Christmas!

Neal Ross

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Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Why Constructive Criticism Does Not Bother Me

My last article, Why I Harp On The Constitution, drew both positive and negative comments. Most of the negative comments I received were in regards to the quote from Abraham Lincoln that I used to support my defense of the Constitution. I was told that Lincoln was not a good example to use when defending the Constitution.

Some people react negatively to criticism, even constructive criticism. Seeing as how I am relatively new in this fight to preserve our Constitution and our liberties, I am willing to take all the help I can get in the search for facts and information.

Therefore I began searching for some data on Lincoln on the internet. One of the things I learned was that during the Civil War he suspended habeas corpus. I came across the following web page ( and while reading it I looked up Ex Parte Milligan. What I found was quite interesting as it applies to certain legislation that has been passed recently in the War On Terror. I will try to comprise into a short version of what I found in reading the Court ruling.

First off though a little refresher history, if you go back and read the Constitution, Article 3, Section 1 only states that,

"The judicial power of the United States, shall be vested in one Supreme Court, and in such inferior courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish. The judges, both of the supreme and inferior courts, shall hold their offices during good behaviour, and shall, at stated times, receive for their services, a compensation, which shall not be diminished during their continuance in office."

There is no mention of how the court is to be established. That changed with the Judiciary Act of 1799, which laid out the entire judiciary system. You can read the entire legislation at, if you wish, but there is one section, section 14 that is of importance to this article. Section 14 states,

" And be it further enacted, That all the before-mentioned courts of the United States, shall have power to issue writs of scire facias, habeas corpus, and all other writs not specially provided for by statute, which may be necessary for the exercise of their respective jurisdictions, and agreeable to the principles and usages of law. And that either of the justices of the supreme court, as well as judges of the district courts, shall have power to grant writs of habeas corpus for the purpose of an inquiry into the cause of commitment.——Provided, That writs of habeas corpus shall in no case extend to prisoners in gaol, unless where they are in custody, under or by colour of the authority of the United States, or are committed for trial before some court of the same, or are necessary to be brought into court to testify."

Before I go any further I want to make it clear that I am not a legal scholar. I am just a guy who so far in life has gotten by with just a high school education. So when I read things I have to take them at their literal meaning. I am not familiar with legal innuendos or the specific terminology used by those who practice law for a living.

I would love for someone to correct me if I am wrong on this, but the way I understand the following, "Provided, That writs of habeas corpus shall in no case extend to prisoners in gaol unless where they are in custody, under or by colour of the authority of the United States, or are committed for trial before some court of the same, or are necessary to be brought into court to testify." is that if you are in custody under the authority of the United States, or if you are committed to stand trial, or if you are to be brought into court to testify, a writ of habeas corpus will be extended to you. Again, if my understanding of this is wrong, I would love to have the actual meaning of it explained to me.

Getting back to Ex Parte Milligan, in October of 1864, a U.S. citizen, Lamdin P. Milligan, was arrested at his home in Indiana and confined to a military prison and placed on trial before a military commission. Military Commission, doesn't that term sound familiar? That really piqued my interest so I continued to read.

Mr. Milligan was charged with 1) Conspiracy against the Government of the United States, 2) Affording aid and comfort to rebels against the authority of the United States 3) Inciting insurrection 4) Disloyal practices and 5)Violation of the laws of war.'

According to the list of charges there were various specifications, but again one of them sounded strikingly familiar, " a period of war and armed rebellion against the authority of the United States, at or near Indianapolis, [and various other places specified] in Indiana, a State within the military lines of the army of the United States, and the theatre of military operations, and which had been and was constantly threatened to be invaded by the enemy."

Milligan appealed, questioning the authority of the military commission. In the presentment of his appeal, it was stated that, "The prayer of the petition was that under the already mentioned act of Congress of March 3d, 1863, the petitioner might be brought before the court, and either turned over to the proper civil tribunal to be proceeded with according to the law of the land, or discharged from custody altogether."

During the course of the appeal there was disagreement between the judges of the Circuit Court and therefore, I had to read this four times to understand it, "And these questions were certified to this court under the provisions of the act of Congress of April 29th, 1802,4 an act [71 U.S. 2, 9] which provides 'that whenever any question shall occur before a Circuit Court, upon which the opinions of the judges shall be opposed, the point upon which the disagreement shall happen, shall, during the same term, upon the request of either party or their counsel, be stated under the direction of the judges, and certified under the seal of the court to the Supreme Court, at their next session to be held thereafter; and shall by the said court be finally decided: and the decision of the Supreme Court and their order in the premises shall be remitted to the Circuit Court, and be there entered of record, and shall have effect according to the nature of the said judgment and order: Provided, That nothing herein contained shall prevent the cause from proceeding, if, in the opinion of the court, further proceedings can be had without prejudice to the merits."

What it means is that whenever the Circuit Court is unable to come to a decision upon a case, the points of disagreement of that case shall be submitted to the Supreme Court for a final decision.

At the heart of the appeal there was the question as to whether the military commission had the jurisdiction to hear the case, or should the case have been heard by a civil court?

According to the petition, "A military commission derives its powers and authority wholly from martial law; and by that law and by military authority only are its proceedings to be judged or reviewed." Dynes v. Hoover, 20 Howard, and that, "Martial law is the will of the commanding officer of an armed force, or of a geographical military department, expressed in time of war within the limits of his military jurisdiction, as necessity demands and prudence dictates, restrained or enlarged by the orders of his military chief, or supreme executive ruler." Hansard's Parliamentary Debates, 3d series, vol. 95, p. 80.

There was much argument over the jurisdiction of the military commission and it was brought to the courts attention that President Lincoln had issued the following statement,
'That during the existing insurrection, and as a necessary [71 U.S. 2, 16] means for suppressing the same, all rebels and insurgents, their aiders and abettors, within the United States, and all persons discouraging volunteer enlistments, resisting militia drafts, or guilty of any disloyal practice, affording aid and comfort to rebels, against the authority of the United States, shall be subject to martial law, and liable to trial and punishment by courts martial or military commission. 'Second. That the writ of habeas corpus is suspended in respect to all persons arrested, or who now, or hereafter during the Rebellion shall be, imprisoned in any fort, camp, arsenal, military prison, or other place of confinement, by any military authority, or by the sentence of any court martial or military commission.'

The petitioners summed it all up with this one simple statement, "It is a question of the rights of the citizen in time of war. Is it true, that the moment a declaration of war is made, the executive department of this government, without an act of Congress, becomes absolute master of our liberties and our lives? Are we, then, subject to martial rule, administered by the President upon his own sense of the exigency, with nobody to control him, and with every magistrate and every authority in the land subject to his will alone? These are the considerations which give to the case its greatest significance."

In rendering their decisions the Supreme Court had many issues upon which to decide, but one of the most interesting statements they made was,

"Subsequently, military commissions are mentioned in four acts of Congress, but in none of them is any provision made for their organization, regulation, or jurisdiction, further than that it is declared that in time of war or rebellion, spies may be tried by a general court-martial or military commission; and that 'persons who are in the military service of [71 U.S. 2, 30] the United States, and subject to the Articles of War,' may also be tried by the same, for murder, and certain other infamous crimes.

These acts do not confer upon military commissions jurisdiction over any persons other than those in the military service and spies.

There being, then, no act of Congress for the establishment of the commission, it depended entirely upon the executive will for its creation and support. This brings up the true question now before the court: Has the President, in time of war, upon his own mere will and judgment, the power to bring before his military officers any person in the land, and subject him to trial and punishment, even to death? The proposition is stated in this form, because it really amounts to this.

If the President has this awful power, whence does he derive it? He can exercise no authority whatever but that which the Constitution of the country gives him. Our system knows no authority beyond or above the law. We may, therefore, dismiss from our minds every thought of the President's having any prerogative, as representative of the people, or as interpreter of the popular will. He is elected by the people to perform those functions, and those only, which the Constitution of his country, and the laws made pursuant to that Constitution, confer."

In continuing, the Court stated that,

"The plan of argument which I propose is, first to examine the text of the Constitution. That instrument, framed with the greatest deliberation, after thirteen years' experience of war and peace, should be accepted as the authentic and final expression of the public judgment, regarding that form and scope of government, and those guarantees of private rights, which legal science, political philosophy, and the experience of previous times had taught as the safest and most perfect. All attempts to explain it away, or to evade or pervert it, should be discountenanced and resisted. Beyond the line of such an argument, everything else ought, in strictness, to be superfluous. But, I shall endeavor to show, further, that the theory of our government, for which I am contending, [71 U.S. 2, 31] is the only one compatible with civil liberty; and, by what I may call an historical argument, that this theory is as old as the nation, and that even in the constitutional monarchies of England and France that notion of executive power, which would uphold military commissions, like the one against which I am speaking, has never been admitted.

What are the powers and attributes of the presidential office? They are written in the second article of the Constitution, and, so far as they relate to the present question, they are these: He is vested with the 'executive power;' he is 'commander-in-chief of the army and navy of the United States, and of the militia of the several States when called into the actual service of the United States;' he is to 'take care that the laws be faithfully executed;' and he takes this oath: 'I do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will, to the best of my ability, preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States.' The 'executive power' mentioned in the Constitution is the executive power of the United States. The President is not clothed with the executive power of the States. He is not clothed with any executive power, except as he is specifically directed by some other part of the Constitution, or by an act of Congress.

He is to 'take care that the laws be faithfully executed.' He is to execute the laws by the means and in the manner which the laws themselves prescribe."

The Court went on to say,

"Much confusion of ideas has been produced by mistaking executive power for kingly power. Because in monarchial countries the kingly office includes the executive, it seems to have been sometimes inferred that, conversely, the executive carries with it the kingly prerogative. Our executive is in no sense a king, even for four years." .

Finally the Court states that,

"I submit, therefore, that upon the text of the original Constitution, as it stood when it was ratified, there is no color for the assumption that the President, without act of Congress, could create military commissions for the trial of persons not military, for any cause or under any circumstances whatever."

Therefore, according to the Supreme Court, at the time of Ex Parte Milligan, the President was not authorized to establish military commissions to try citizens who were not combatants because it was not authorized by Congress.

All that took place in 1866. It is now 2007 and the President of the United States now has that authority, having signed into law, Senate Bill 3930, or the Military Commissions Act. Section 2 of the Military Commissions Act states that "The authority to establish military commissions under chapter 47A of title 10, United States Code, as added by section 3(a), may not be construed to alter or limit the authority of the President under the Constitution of the United States and laws of the United States to establish military commissions for areas declared to be under martial law or in occupied territories should circumstances so require."

It would appear that our president, and all those who follow, now have the power to establish military tribunals to try those who they deem as enemy combatants, or a threat to them. I would like for you to read one last quote from the Courts ruling in Ex Parte Milligan.

"This nation, as experience has proved, cannot always remain at peace, and has no right to expect that it will always have wise and humane rulers, sincerely attached to the principles of the Constitution. Wicked men, ambitious of power, with hatred of liberty and contempt of law, may fill the place once occupied by Washington and Lincoln; and if this right is conceded, and the calamities of war again befall us, the dangers to human liberty are frightful to contemplate. If our fathers had failed to provide for just such a contingency, they would have been false to the trust reposed in them. They knew-the history of the world told them-the nation they were founding, be its existence short or long, would be involved in war; how often or how long continued, human foresight could not tell; and that unlimited power, wherever lodged at such a time, was especially hazardous to freemen. For this, and other equally weighty reasons, they secured the inheritance they had fought to maintain, by incorporating in a written constitution the safeguards which time had proved were essential to its preservation. Not one of these safeguards can the President, or Congress, or the Judiciary disturb, except the one concerning the writ of habeas corpus.

It is essential to the safety of every government that, in a great crisis, like the one we have just passed through, there should be a power somewhere of suspending the writ of habeas corpus. In every war, there are men of previously good character, wicked enough to counsel their fellow- citizens to resist the measures deemed necessary by a good government to sustain its just authority and overthrow its enemies; and their influence may lead to dangerous combinations. In the emergency of the times, an immediate public investigation according to law may not be possible; and yet, the period to the country may be too imminent to suffer such persons to go at large. Unquestionably, there is then an exigency which demands that the government, if it should see fit in the exercise of a proper discretion to make arrests, should not be required to produce the persons arrested [71 U.S. 2, 126] in answer to a writ of habeas corpus. The Constitution goes no further. It does not say after a writ of habeas corpus is denied a citizen, that he shall be tried otherwise than by the course of the common law; if it had intended this result, it was easy by the use of direct words to have accomplished it. The illustrious men who framed that instrument were guarding the foundations of civil liberty against the abuses of unlimited power; they were full of wisdom, and the lessons of history informed them that a trial by an established court, assisted by an impartial jury, was the only sure way of protecting the citizen against oppression and wrong. Knowing this, they limited the suspension to one great right, and left the rest to remain forever inviolable. But, it is insisted that the safety of the country in time of war demands that this broad claim for martial law shall be sustained. If this were true, it could be well said that a country, preserved at the sacrifice of all the cardinal principles of liberty, is not worth the cost of preservation. Happily, it is not so."

While it appears that the Supreme Court, as far back as 1866, ruled that the writ of habeas corpus could be suspended, it also ruled that "It does not say after a writ of habeas corpus is denied a citizen, that he shall be tried otherwise than by the course of the common law."

Again, as I previously stated, I am not a legal scholar, but I can read English. I understand that our current legal system has the principle of precedence. That if a higher court has established a ruling, that it is to be held as binding unless overturned by a higher court. Since the Supreme Court is the highest court in the land, and they have ruled that even though habeas corpus can be denied, a citizen still has the right for a trial under common law, my question is this. Why has not the legality of the Military Commissions Act been contested as it obviously violates the spirit and intent of the Courts ruling in Ex Parte Milligan?

As I said earlier, I do not take constructive criticism negatively. If I did I would not have bothered to research Lincoln, and therefore would not have come across this fascinating case. Anyone who wishes to read it in its entirety can do so at

It is a fascination, although rather long and complicated, read.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Why I Harp On The Constitution

I am often asked why I harp so much on the Constitution in all of my writings. That question leaves me at a loss for words, and most of you by now realize that I am not normally at a loss for things to say. I am left speechless not because I cannot explain why I constantly refer to the Constitution, but that someone could actually not understand why for themselves. It seems to me that people these days consider the Constitution as some sort of historical relic, whose sole purpose is to be viewed in some museum. That is what leaves me speechless. It seems that far too many people just do not understand the importance of the words contained within that document.

Merriam-Webster's Dictionary defines Constitution as:
1: an established law or custom : ordinance
2 a: the physical makeup of the individual especially with respect to the health, strength, and appearance of the body a [hearty constitution] b: the structure, composition, physical makeup, or nature of something the constitution of society
3: the act of establishing, making, or setting up
4: the mode in which a state or society is organized; especially : the manner in which sovereign power is distributed
5 a: the basic principles and laws of a nation, state, or social group that determine the powers and duties of the government and guarantee certain rights to the people in it b: a written instrument embodying the rules of a political or social organization

The 'Lectric Law Library', an online reference for all things legal, we find the following definition for the Constitution:
"The fundamental law of the state, containing the principles upon which the government is founded and regulating the divisions of the sovereign powers, directing to what persons each of these powers is to be confided and the manner it is to be exercised. E.g., the Constitution of the United States."

Not only is the Constitution the supreme law of the land, Article 6, but it is the document that establishes our government and clearly defines what it can and cannot do. If it were not for the Constitution we would have no legal form of government, unless of course you wish to live under dictatorial rule.

The Constitution, although it might have been written by just a few men, was written to establish a form of government that was as minimally intrusive upon our personal liberties as possible, yet strong enough to take care of our nations needs. If you read Article 1 of the Constitution you will find that there are only about 17 clearly defined powers that our government has. Nowhere in that document does it say that the government has the right or authorization to run or give us ‘universal health care’, or to establish a department of education which determines a national curriculum, or to tax your earnings and give it to other people, or nations, in the form of subsidies or federal aid. Yet far too many Americans have come to believe that those are all within the powers and that they are the responsibilities of our federal government. Those of us who speak out against these usurpations of federal power are labeled as extremists by people who obviously are not aware that we are in fact fully aware of what the Constitution says our government can and cannot do. People have been brainwashed into believing that they are right and we are nutcases. All because they have not taken the time to read that document for themselves.

I cannot, and I will not, sit idly by while our government continues to assume powers it does not have, and while it tramples upon our rights and liberties that the Constitution was designed to protect. That is why I continue to hammer away at people with references to the Constitution.

George Washington once said, “But the Constitution which at any time exists, till changed by an explicit and authentic act of the whole people, is sacredly obligatory upon all.” If Washington said that it was sacredly obligatory to all unless changed by an act of the people, (as per the amendment process contained in Article 5), that means that until we say so, the government ONLY has the powers that are clearly defined in Article 1.

Martin Van Buren, a president who is not often quoted, once said, “For myself, therefore, I desire to declare that the principle that will govern me in the high duty to which my country calls me is a strict adherence to the letter and spirit of the Constitution as it was designed by those who framed it.”

Abraham Lincoln, a president whose name most people should recognize, said, “Our safety, our liberty, depends upon preserving the Constitution of the United States as our fathers made it inviolate. The people of the United States are the rightful masters of both Congress and the courts, not to overthrow the Constitution, but to overthrow the men who pervert the Constitution. “

That is why I continually refer to the Constitution in my writings, as Lincoln said, ‘Our safety, our liberty, depends upon preserving the Constitution...’. Until people realize the importance of understanding our Constitution, and requiring that our government function strictly within it, I can only pray, as Millard Fillmore did, “May God save the country, for it is evident that the people will not.”

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Who Is To Blame

As often is the case during a time of political campaigns we are currently inundated with news concerning candidates from both political parties seeking to become our next president. As voters, we are given the opportunity to watch the debates between the candidates and make a choice as to who we think is best qualified to be the next president. My question is this, what makes the people of this country qualified to make an intelligent decision concerning an issue of such great importance?

It is widely accepted that all Americans over the age of 18 have the right to vote. However, if you look back through our nations history that wasn’t always the case.

At the time the Constitution was written and ratified, only white male property owners held the right to vote. That meant that only about 10-15 percent of the population of the United States could vote for their elected representatives. Over the course of our nations history the right of suffrage has undergone many changes. In 1870 the 15th amendment granted former slaves the right to vote. In 1920, the 19th amendment granted women the right to vote. In 1924 the Indian Citizenship Act granted Native Americans the right to vote. In 1964, the 24th amendment banned the poll tax as a requirement for voting. In 1971, the 26th amendment lowered the voting age to 18.

It is now widely accepted that voting is a right that all citizens of this country enjoy. The thing about rights is that along with them come responsibilities. The right to drive a car also comes with the responsibility of knowing the traffic laws and obeying them as to not endanger yourself or others while on the road. The right to own a firearm also comes with the responsibility of safe handing practices, such as knowing your target and what lies beyond it, always treat your firearm as if it is loaded, always keep the firearm pointed in a safe direction, and never point it at something unless you intend to shoot. All rights have some sort of responsibility that goes along with them, and voting should be the same way.

Voters should be aware of the Constitutional role of government, what it can and cannot do. They should be fully aware of the various branches of government and the restrictions placed upon them.

At one time this was the case. In the 60's there were literacy tests required by prospective voters. However the intent was not to ensure the voters were informed as to their responsibilities as citizens. Instead they were used as tools to block the illiterate poor, mainly African-Americans, from voting. However, and example of the 1965 Literacy Test from the State of Alabama is worth a read. I would be hard pressed to find a high percentage of the people I come into contact with who could pass it.

Take it yourself and see if you can get at least a 75% score. You might be surprised at how poorly you do.

And that my friends is the topic of this paper, the American people's total lack of understanding of what the role of government is. I hate to say it but I find the majority of people I come in contact with to be totally ignorant, bordering on absolutely stupid, in regards to government and the powers our Constitution grants it.

I hear people at work making asinine comments like, "It is about time for a woman president, that is why I am voting for Hillary." Or "Oprah is supporting Obama, and if Oprah says he is okay I am voting for him too."

When I hear people talk like that it becomes apparent that our country is in such sad shape not because of our elected representatives. It is because we as a nation have elected these buffoons to represent us and we have allowed them to stay in office once they have proven themselves to be buffoons.

Just because a candidate has breasts and female reproductive organs does not mean she is qualified to be our president. Just because some talk show host says a candidate is the best one to be president does not mean that you have to agree with her.

People these days just do not think when it comes to politics. They listen to these people make promises and the one who makes the most promises concerning issues that benefit them personally are the ones who get the votes. It does not matter if the candidate has no constitutional authority to enact legislation based upon their promises. It does not matter if those promises will cost us billions in wasted tax dollars. What mattered is that their promises appealed to the largest majority of voters.And that is why we are in such sad shape, because the voters themselves have not the foggiest idea of how our government is supposed to function.

I don't see things getting any better in the future as long as the people of this country believe that our elected officials are Constitutionally authorized to keep the promises they make on the campaign trail. As long as we, as people, continue to vote for candidates who make us promises that are not authorized by our Constitution, or we re-elect officials who have violated their oaths of office while serving, this country will continue to get what it deserves, rotten scumbags picked from the cesspool of a society that is illiterate in regards to the role of government.

Maybe it is time to reinstate the Literacy Test for voting. Maybe until we can prove that we are educated enough concerning the role of government we ought to lose that right as well. Then again maybe things will never change, because maybe, just maybe, things are just the way those in power want them to be. A mass of uneducated ignorant voters who are willing to buy into their lies and b.s. without the slightest clue that they are being lied to and deceived.

Just for your own enlightenment, take the Alabama Literacy test. Maybe, just maybe you will change your mind about who you had planned on voting for. But then maybe I am just dreaming.

Can America Survive?

The future of this country has been on my mind quite a bit lately. I see far too much happening that leads me to believe that our government no longer cares one iota about the concerns of the average American citizen. We are merely worker drones to keep the corporate machine running and to provide our government with a steady stream of tax dollars.

Our country faces a multitude of problems. Many Americans place the blame for these problems upon the Democrats, while others blame the Republicans. For those of you who feel that we are better off when your party holds control of our government, I would like to ask the following question. If our country has steadily gotten worse no matter who is in charge, how can you say that your party is any better than the other? If your political party were better, then wouldn't it make sense that things would improve under their control, not steadily get worse. Nothing has gotten better under either Republican or Democrat administrations.

Both parties are equally as culpable for the situation this country finds itself in. The democrats tend to be more socialist in that they want to take from those who have and give to those who don't, while the republicans tend to favor big business and corporate interests over the welfare of the working people. Under the George W. Bush administration, the republicans have taken a decided turn towards fascism with some of the legislation they have enacted. Whatever the case may be, the largest group, the working class American, gets the shaft.

You tell me, which would be worst, living in Nazi Germany or living in Communist Russia? Myself, I think both would be intolerable. So, the way I see it, with the upcoming 2008 Presidential election upon us we are once again offered a choice of either business as usual republicans or business as usual democrats. Not much of a choice at all if we truly want to turn this country around for the better.

However, there is one distinct difference this time around, that being Congressman Ron Paul of Texas. Ron Paul is a breath of fresh air amidst the usual stench of political rhetoric and propaganda. His platform is the only one, if one were to put emotions aside and think about the facts, that follows the precepts of government as laid out in our Constitution.

Ron Paul's message of freedom is finding a willing audience who have become tired of the lies, deceit, and corruption we are offered by our current slate of candidates. Although I personally feel that Ron Paul is the ONLY candidate honorable enough to hold the office of President, I feel that even if he were to be elected it might not be enough to turn the tide and restore our country to the principles that made it great.

Let me explain. I don’t want to talk about what some consider conspiracy theories, let it suffice to say that it has taken years for our country to reach the sad state of affairs we currently find ourselves in. Whether you believe that this is due to corporate influences, the influence of special interest groups, or by influences of some larger group, the fact of the matter is that we have sat idly by while our government has stopped representing we the people. If Ron Paul were to be elected, those who hold the reins of power would not relinquish them willingly. I have serious concerns for the safety of Congressman Paul if he makes into the oval office.

Secondly, if Ron Paul does make it into office, and if he does succeed in making the changes needed to turn this country around, what then? It is questionable as to whether the majority of the people of this country could keep this country on the path to recovery that would be made by a Ron Paul administration. After all, we did little to stop the damage that has already been done by special, corporate and global interests. What makes you think we would be any less apathetic about the affairs of government after a Ron Paul left office?

Finally, I do not think the American people are willing, or even capable of making the sacrifices needed to save our country. We have become far too accustomed to government involvement in every aspect of our lives, and while it may sound silly I think the people of this country would go into withdrawal symptoms if they were forced to rely upon their own wits and skills to survive without some form of government subsidy.

So, what is the answer? I don’t know that there is one. I have been reading a number of articles by authors who are of the opinion that we are past the point where political activism will make a change for the better in this country.

A quote from one of these writers will give you an idea of the drastic measures some think are required to restore our republic to the way our founders envisioned,

“Your one and only chance for freedom or survival will be to claim the right and the duty to throw out those in government who would reduce your status from “sovereign citizen” (the 14th amendment eliminated that) to prisoner. You will not reclaim America by reason, argument, Fox News debates or petitions to your congressional representative. (They don’t listen anyway). It won’t come because you voted, went to the candidate meetings or attended your local city or county council sessions. It will not happen because you volunteered to help with Bible school or gave blood to the Red Cross. It still will not happen when you pay your taxes and use your zip code. It will only happen when you are left no choice but to exercise your second amendment right, (a natural right that cannot be taken away by anyone, ever, unless of course, you turned in your weapons for a $50 keep our schools safe reward) and that day is virtually upon us.”

I am of the opinion that this course of action may be futile as well. The methods hinted at in that quote might very well remove the cancerous growth that calls itself our government, but it will do little to nothing to change the attitude of the majority of Americans that allowed this cancer to take over our system of government in the first place.

The American people are far too uneducated in regards to the way our system of government is supposed to operate. We have become morally corrupt, lazy, and apathetic. It is us to whom the blame firmly falls for the state of affairs of this country. If we had been paying attention and really wanted to, we could have kept our elected officials in check and made sure they continued to represent us, instead of special interests. Instead we watched television and trusted the news to keep us informed.

Allow me to put forth a scenario. Let's just say for the sake of argument that magically we were able to replace the entire Congress with new members. Say we were to install a new president who had no previous experience inside Washington D.C. Say we give them a copy of the Constitution and say, 'Here, this is the manual for how you are to run this country', how long do you think it would take before special interests got their tentacles into the halls of power and corrupted our elected representatives once again? How many election cycles would pass before people lost interest in keeping a watchful eye upon their elected representatives and allowed them to become corrupted by the power they held? I do not think it would be very long at all before things were back to the point where we are right now.

I am not saying that those of us who care, those who understand the threat to our liberties that government poses should just roll over and give up. I just feel that the outcome of this battle is inevitable. Whether we choose to fight to save our nation, or if we are imprisoned under some provision of some legislation designed to silence dissent, the end result will be the same. Our system of government, and with it our personal freedoms and liberties, as originally established by our Constitution is gone, never to be known again. The great experiment in self governance has failed, and it is because we the people have failed to understand the principles upon which it was founded and to keep a watchful eye on our government. Unless America turns itself around on an individual basis first, our country has no chance of survival. So you have a choice this election cycle, vote for business as usual and then go back to your apathetic lives, or vote for change with the understanding that you have a crucial role in maintaining the integrity of your elected officials. Option A leads to the death of our nation. Option B provides our only chance at survival.

Friday, November 23, 2007

The Truth In News, What a Novel Concept

Truth In The News, What A Novel Concept.
Neal Ross
23, Nov, 2007

In response to many of my articles I have been rewarded with responses from people who are as aware of the danger this nation faces due to our governments inaction on certain issues, and its passing of legislation that I consider bordering on treasonous.

However, every once in awhile I get a response from someone who has fallen prey to the lies and disinformation fed to them by our elected representatives and the medial. Just the other day, in response to some criticism of the Bush Administration, I got an e-mail that said, "Ah yes... the gloom and doom of the EVIL Bush Administration".

When I get e-mails like that I feel as though I am talking to a parrot, who can only repeat what it has been taught to say and is incapable of thinking on its own. I partially blame these people for being so weak of character that they are unwilling to accept the truth when it is standing right in front of them.

On the other hand, I place a large part of the blame on the news media in this country. With the proliferation on 24 hour a day news coverage on stations like CNN, FOX, and MSNBC, as well as the regular watered down network news broadcasts, it is next to impossible to monitor everything that is broadcast that is commonly accepted as news.

There are the occasional bursts of light that illuminate a particularly subject sufficiently for the public to take notice. Lou Dobbs on CNN does a decent job of scrutinizing the inefficiencies of our government, its lack of action on illegal immigration, and the clandestine merger of the United States, Canada, and Mexico into a North American Union. Sixty Minutes also has its moments of glory, as when the Comptroller General recently cut through the rhetoric and plainly stated that our governments spending and future commitments to entitlement programs is placing our country on a path towards insolvency. Keith Olbermann on MSNBC also has done a good job on exposing the attacks upon our personal liberties undertaken by the Bush Administration in the name of the War On Terror. However these are just a few isolated glimmers of the potential of what broadcast journalism is truly capable of.

Edward R. Murrow, was, in my opinion, one of the best broadcast journalists in the history of this nation. While most of what he did on the air happened before I was born, I have read about his courage in standing up to the communist witch hunt led by Senator McCarthy.

In a speech given to Radio and Television News Directors Association in Chicago, Murrow is quoted as saying, “Our history will be what we make it. And if there are any historians about fifty or a hundred years from now, and there should be preserved the kinescopes for one week of all three networks, they will there find recorded in black and white, or color, evidence of decadence, escapism and insulation from the realities of the world in which we live. I invite your attention to the television schedules of all networks between the hours of 8 and 11 p.m., Eastern Time. Here you will find only fleeting and spasmodic reference to the fact that this nation is in mortal danger. There are, it is true, occasional informative programs presented in that intellectual ghetto on Sunday afternoons. But during the daily peak viewing periods, television in the main insulates us from the realities of the world in which we live.”

I would suggest that everyone read the entire speech which can be found at, as it is quite enlightening.

When Murrow went after Senator McCarthy, he used the senators own words against him, via a series of speeches given by the senator. Our broadcast news media today could take a lesson from Murrow by piecing together a series of clips of President Bush concerning the war in Iraq. The President has lied, changed his story, and his reasons for fighting this war so many times that I do not have enough fingers to count these changes. Yet our news media, in the guise of being subjective, pussyfoots around the issue by reporting on the current troop losses, or the lack of action by the Iraqi government to take action in regards to the stabilization of their own country. Where is the courage of the news media to tell the people they have been lied to and manipulated in the aftermath of 9/11 into supporting a war that we have no reason to be involved in?

Part of the problem, as I stated earlier is that the people of this country are lack to courage to face the truth. We feel more comfortable accepting the rhetoric and propaganda put forth by our respective political party, that we are unwilling to accept anything that might shatter the house of illusion that we live within. Therefore anyone who does have the courage to speak out against the illusion that is fed to us as truth is labeled as either conspiracy nut or an extremist.

There is a growing disillusionment with the overall state of our government, from both sides of the political spectrum. Record numbers of people are switching their party affiliation to Independent. That is a good sign, in that it shows people are not willing to accept the status quo in government any more. However, when a candidate for president like Ron Paul has the courage to stand before us and tell us exactly what is wrong with this country and what needs to be done to fix it, we are still unwilling to accept the facts as he presents them. The supporters of Ron Paul are labeled terrorists by supposedly respectable journalists like Glenn Beck. We are told that the U.S. military should be used against us. So much for freedom of speech when people who believe in government according to the Constitution are labeled as terrorists.

Our freedoms and liberties as defined in the Constitution and the Bill of Rights have been trampled upon by our government, and the news media, for the most part, have remained silent on these violations. The final nail in the coffin of this republic may come as early as next week when the Supreme Court rules on whether the people of this country have the right to own firearms or if that right is solely in regards to the formation and maintenance of the militia. What is the old saying, ‘The second amendment is never needed until they try to take it away’? That time may soon be upon us.

The news media, every time there is some tragedy involving firearms reports non stop on the statistics regarding numbers of people killed due to firearm accidents. They give coverage to groups that call for more gun control legislation, yet shun the groups who say that firearms are as George Washington said, “Firearms stand next in importance to the Constitution itself. They are the American people's liberty teeth and keystone under independence.”

While many feel that our streets would be safer if nobody had any firearms whatsoever, I would like to present some statistics which prove to the contrary.

-In 1911, Turkey established gun control. From 1915 to 1917, 1.5 million Armenians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

-In 1929, the Soviet Union established gun control. From 1929 to 1953, about 20 million dissidents, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

-Germany established gun control in 1938 and from 1939 to 1945, a total of 6 million Jews and 7 million others who were unable to defend themselves were rounded up and exterminated.

-China established gun control in 1935. From 1948 to 1952, 20 million political dissidents, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated

-Guatemala established gun control in 1964. From 1964 to 1981, 100,000 Mayan Indians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

-Uganda established gun control in 1970. From 1971 to 1979, 300,000 Christians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

-Cambodia established gun control in 1956. From 1975 to 1977, one million educated' people, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

It is now, more than ever, that we need our news media to dig down within itself and find its backbone and stand up for the rights of the people. It is time for them to stop worrying about offending corporate sponsors and tell the people the truth about what is going on in this country. We have had enough of what they call the news. Our bellies cannot abide another story about the custody battle of Britney Spears, or the most recent arrest of Lindsey Lohan. It is time we were given the news as Edward R. Murrow would have reported it. It may come as a shock to many, but that shock might be just what the doctor ordered to awaken us from the stupor we have been living in when it comes to path our republic is on towards tyranny.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Why do you pay taxes?

I was discussing the National Debt with some people the other day and it came up that I support Ron Paul for President. I was asked how I could support him when he wants to do away with the IRS. They said our country would collapse without income taxes to fund our government. It is amazing how misinformed people are these days if they truly believe that?

As originally ratified, the Constitution of the United States, mentions taxation three times, and all references to it are found in Article 1.

Section 1, "Representatives and direct taxes shall be apportioned among the several states..."

Section 8, "The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts and excises, to pay the debts and provide for the common defense and general welfare of the United States; but all duties, imposts and excises shall be uniform throughout the United States"

Section 9 "No capitation, or other direct tax shall be laid, unless in proportion to the census or enumeration herein before directed to be taken."

Even I had to study some to figure out exactly what some of the terms used in those clauses meant. Therefore I cannot fault people for not completely understanding them either. However, once I learned what they meant I became convinced that a tax upon a persons income is unconstitutional.

In section 1 it states that direct taxes shall be apportioned among the several states. Apportioned means to be divided equally. According to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, there are only three taxes that are classified as direct taxes. They are, a capitation, (a direct tax levied upon each person, also known as a head tax), a tax upon real property, and a tax upon personal property. Real property is in regards to buildings and structures that cannot be moved, while personal property covers items that you own that can be moved from location to location.

Section 8 states that the Congress shall have the power to lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts and excises. Taxes come in many forms such as the duties, imposts, and excises listed in the Constitution. A duty is a form of tax that is applied to a specific object which is often seen in regards to customs duties when you bring things from one country to another. According to West's Encyclopedia of American Law, an impost is another form of tax that is most often associated with customs duties. An excise tax is a tax upon consumption. We pay excise taxes upon such items as gasoline, cigarettes and alcohol.

An income tax is a tax levied on the financial income of either persons, corporations or other entities. Yet the term income tax is nowhere to be found in the constitution.

When talking about income taxes, there are progressive, proportional, an regressive methods of taxing income. In the United States we use a progressive, or graudated tax system, in which the more you make, the higher the tax you are required to pay. If you earn under $7825 per year you pay 10%, if you earn under $3150 per year you pay 15%, all the way up to 35% for those who earn $174,850 and up. Corporate tax rates are also progressive, but they vary a bit differently. All the tax rates can be found at,

The history of an income tax goes way back in our nations history. After the War of 1812 an income tax was imposed to help pay off the debt incurred by the war. However, after the debt was paid the tax was repealed.

In 1895 the issue of an income tax was put before the Supreme Court in the case of Pollock v. Farmers Loan & Trust. The Court ruled that income taxes were direct taxes and therefore unconstitutional.

In his dissent to the Pollack decision, Justice Harlan stated:

"When, therefore, this court adjudges, as it does now adjudge, that Congress cannot impose a duty or tax upon personal property, or upon income arising either from rents of real estate or from personal property, including invested personal property, bonds, stocks, and investments of all kinds, except by apportioning the sum to be so raised among the States according to population, it practically decides that, without an amendment of the Constitution -- two-thirds of both Houses of Congress and three-fourths of the States concurring -- such property and incomes can never be made to contribute to the support of the national government."

It became apparent that the Courts would strike down any new taxes upon a persons income as unconstitutional. Therefore the 16th amendment was proposed and ratified, altering the means and ability to tax the people of this country.

The sixteenth amendment states, "The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several states, and without regard to any census or enumeration."

Although some claim the ratification process of the 16th amendment was flawed and therefore the amendment was never legally ratified, there still disagreements on what exactly defined income.

The Supreme Court ruled on a few of them, such as in Eisner v. McCumber the Court ruled that income is derived from gains or profits made from activity, but not income derived from labor. In Doyle v. Mitchell the Court ruled, "...the idea of gain or increase arising from corporate activity."

U.S. District Court Judge James C. Cox, in 2003 said, “If you examine the [16th amendment] carefully you would find that a sufficient number of states never ratified that amendment.

State Rep Phil Hart (R-Idaho) states, “ You can look through the statues and look for the law that requires you to pay, and you do that you can’t identify a law that says the average person in America who earns a wage and works in private business has to pay and income tax.

According to Supreme Court in Stanton vs. Baltic Mining, “the provisions of the 16th amendment conferred no new powers of taxation.” Also from the NY Times, January of 1916 “In substance, the court holds that the sixteenth amendment did not empower the federal government to levy a new tax.

There have been numerous petitions by the people of this country, asking the federal government to show them the statute that requires them to pay a tax upon their earnings. The federal government has refused to do so. David Cay Johnston of the NY Times once asked, “Why won’t the IRS answer the question set forth in the petitions of the American people." His answer was, “The government is answering the questions through enforcement in the courts.” In other words, the government is using intimidation and force to keep us in line.

There have been agents of the Internal Revenue Service who have resigned because they could not find the law that states the people of this country are required to pay an income tax. Among them are John Turner, Joe Bannister, and Sherry Jackson, who was recently sent to prison for not paying an income tax.

Strikingly, even our Congress could not find the law that says we have to pay income taxes. In a letter from Daniel K. Inouye, we find the following, “Based on research by the Congressional Research Service, there is no provisions individual to pay an income tax.

I personally feel that the 16th amendment was a crime perpetrated upon the people of this country by our government, done in a method to hide the illegality of it. However since too many are unwilling to accept that proposal, and therefore they continue to pay into the scheme to rob them of their labor, that will not be my purpose in writing this paper. I wish to show you how our tax system is being used to plunder the working people of America while it is being exploited and taken advantage of by corporations. I also want to show how our government, no matter how much they take in from taxes, is still spending more than it receives from tax revenues. So, from this point forward, no matter how distasteful I find it, I am going to proceed under the presumption that we are required to pay taxes upon our earnings.

If we all can agree that taxes are meant to fund our government, then I would like to show provide you with facts that show that this is just not the case.

When Ronald Reagan became president, he set up the Grace Commission to work to route out inefficiency in government. In their report, the Commission stated that,
“100% of what is collected is absorbed solely by the federal debt.”

Each year since 1969, Congress has spent more money than its income. As of this writing our national debt stands at $9.1 trillion dollars. To pay the debt off it would mean that each citizen, every man, woman and child in this country would have to pay $30,034.26. I can tell you right now, that is more than I earn in a year.

According to David Walker, Comptroller General, "Deficit spending and promised benefits for federal entitlement programs have put every man, woman, and child in the United States on the hook for $175,000"

So, if our taxes are only going towards paying interest upon the money our government has borrowed to function, who exactly have they borrowed that money from?

That is a complicated question, even for me, but I will try to simplify it as best I can. According to some, good portion of it is held by the purchasers of T-bonds and savings bonds, while about half the remaining debt is held by the American in the form of insurance companies and retirement funds, and then the rest is held by foreign investors.

According to another source,, 40% is held by the Federal Reserve Bank, 22% by foreign investors and the rest is divided among other sources.

According to, ttp://, 58% of the debt is held by private investors who buy those T-bonds, while 1/3 is held by foreign investors, and only $3.3 trillion is held by the Federal Reserve. It is interesting also that much of the debt is held by IOU's to the Social Security Trust fund, from which our government has been plundering for years to feed its incessant growth and spending.

Regardless of who holds the debt, our country, our government in particular, has dug us into a hole we are not likely to get out of easily. They have allowed the Federal Reserve Bank to just print more money to fund their operation. This has led to inflation and the overall decline in the value of the U.S. dollar as compared to all other world currencies.

After President Woodrow Wilson signed the Federal Reserve Act he is quoted as saying, “I am a most unhappy man. I have unwittingly ruined my country. A great industrial nation is now controlled by its system of debt." Compare that to what Thomas Jefferson said in regards to the banking industry, "If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their money, first by inflation and then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around them (around the banks), will deprive the people of their property until their children will wake up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered."

As our government continues to spend, and our national debt continues to rise towards $10 trillion, our government continues to borrow from the FED and the dollar continues to decline in value.

Already there are hints that the loss of value of the dollar is causing some foreign investors to sell off their holdings in dollars and switch to something more stable.

While this is happening, we, the taxpayers are being saddled with this debt that we cannot conceivably pay off. Our children, their children, and their grandchildren will be stuck with this monstrous debt.

We are stuck with this debt, we have no choice other than to pay taxes, or go to jail. However, remember in the Supreme Court case of Doyle v. Mitchell the Court ruled, income referred to "...the idea of gain or increase arising from corporate activity".

So, how much of this burden are the corporations in this country carrying? The Tax Policy Center, Urban Institute and Brookings Institute, have put together a list going back to 1934 which compares the amount of money collected in taxes by individuals and corporations.

The numbers are in millions and what this chart shows is very interesting. For example, in 1934, individual income taxes were $420 million and corporate taxes taken in where $364 million. The public paid approximately 14% more in taxes than corporations. Fast forward to 1960 and individual income taxes drew in $40.715 million in revenue while corporations paid $$21.494 million, a 48% difference. Zoom up to 2000 and we, the taxpayers paid $1,004,462 million in taxes while corporations paid $202,289 million, a difference of 80%.

As these statistics show, the American people are getting stuck paying for our government while our corporations have managed to weasel out of paying their share. Cheryl Woodward of found that between 1990-2000 corporate profits rose by 93% and CEO pay went up 517%. Yet median wages went down 3.6%. If corporations are making more then you would think that they in turn would be paying more in taxes, not less as the statistics by the Tax Policy Center state.

Leona Helmsley, the Queen of Mean, once said, "We don't pay taxes...only the little people pay taxes." That is obvious from the figures presented, but how can that be if our tax system is fair?

The answer is simple, our government has structured the tax system in such a way that corporations can find loopholes which allow for them to avoid paying taxes, or at least the required amount of taxes upon their earnings.

According to the Citizens for Tax Justice, 275 of Americans corporations paid only a 17.2% tax rate, less than half of the required 35%.

Fox News claims to be fair and balanced, yet their owner Rupert Murdoch is far from fair when it comes to paying his taxes. According to the BBC and the Economics Newspaper, Murdoch paid a meager 6% taxes upon $5.4 billion in profits.

So, how do our corporations get away with not paying their fair share of taxes? According to Senator Byron Dorgan, in his book Take This Job And Ship It, "The tax code is written in a way that allows companies not to pay the full 35% U.S. corporate tax rate on foreign income when that money remains invested overseas."

You might think that the money does no good if it remains invested overseas. However, that is not the end of the story. In 2005, the Republican controlled Congress passed a special law that lowered the tax rate for corporations who wish to bring their money back to the U.S. to 5.25%.

So, our companies can move overseas and make their products using low paid foreign workers, then sell them to American citizens for a huge profit and pay only 5.25% in taxes. That hardly sounds fair.

David Evens, a reporter for Bloomberg News discovered that there is a 5 story building in the Cayman Islands that is the corporate address for over 12 thousand businesses. These businesses are getting a lower tax rate because they are headquarted overseas.

How does all this happen? It is because our government, for the most part does not care about you or I. They receive corporate funds in the form of campaign contributions. If they change the tax code to make these corporations pay their fair share, the will be biting the hand that feeds them.

Until we as a nation decide that we have had enough of elected representatives who have sold their soul to special interests and globalists, things will never change. We need to get involved, let our government know that their days of frivolous spending are over, the days of hidden earmarks gone, and that they are going to have to live within their means.

I would like you to ponder these two quotes.

"A politician cannot spend one dime on any spending project without first taking that dime from the person who earned it. So, when a politician votes for a spending bill he is saying that he believes the government should spend that particular dollar rather than the individual who worked for it." Neal Boortz.

"There is no such thing as government money - only taxpayer money." William Weld, quoted in Readers Digest.

It is your money that our government has squandered. They have taken it from you in the form of taxes that are questionable at best. They have disregarded the financial and economic future of the working class of America. We are now shouldered with a debt that will be with us for decades. The value of our currency has shrunk, and it will continue to do so as our government continues to just float another loan from the FED to fund its spending. When will it stop? That my friends is entirely up to you.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Our Dysfunctional Republic Part 6

Article 2
The Executive Branch

Article 2 of the United States Constitution outlines how we elect our president, and his authority, yet it is only1022 words long. Compare that to Article 1 at 2249 words. It seems the founding fathers gave more thought to the powers given to Congress than they did the president. The Executive office of our government was solely designed to be the person who executes the laws which were passed by the Congress. This is clearly stated in Article 2, Section 1, "The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America." Webster's Dictionary defines executive as, "1: designed for or related to carrying out plans or purposes 2: of or relating to the enforcement of laws and conduct of affairs." That is the job of the president in a nutshell, to make sure our laws are enforced. Think of the president as a manager, one who coordinates and organizes various people and agencies to make sure our nations laws are enforced.

I find it extremely interesting that so much money and effort is spent these days by candidates who wish to become president of the United States. Huge sums of money are collected and then spent to convince you to vote for a particular candidate. It is that particular aspect, the actual voting for our president, that I would like to talk about now.

I would have thought that most people are aware that the president is not elected by a popular vote of the people, yet I would have been wrong in making that assumption. In talking to people, I have found that there actually are people who are not aware of the electoral college. I don't know if this is because they have forgotten what they learned in civics class, or if that subject was never taught. Whatever the case may be, I would like to present what the Constitution says about the electoral college.

Article 2, Section 1 states the following, "Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors, equal to the whole Number of Senators and Representatives to which the State may be entitled in the Congress: but no Senator or Representative, or Person holding an Office of Trust or Profit under the United States, shall be appointed an Elector."

Each state could select these electors in whatever manner they so desired, as long as the total number did not deviate from the guidelines laid out by the Constitution. What exactly is the purpose of these electors? The Constitution clearly defines what the duties of these electors were to be.

"The Electors shall meet in their respective States, and vote by Ballot for two persons, of whom one at least shall not lie an Inhabitant of the same State with themselves. And they shall make a List of all the Persons voted for, and of the Number of Votes for each; which List they shall sign and certify, and transmit sealed to the Seat of the Government of the United States, directed to the President of the Senate. The President of the Senate shall, in the Presence of the Senate and House of Representatives, open all the Certificates, and the Votes shall then be counted. The Person having the greatest Number of Votes shall be the President, if such Number be a Majority of the whole Number of Electors appointed; and if there be more than one who have such Majority, and have an equal Number of Votes, then the House of Representatives shall immediately choose by Ballot one of them for President; and if no Person have a Majority, then from the five highest on the List the said House shall in like Manner choose the President. But in choosing the President, the Votes shall be taken by States, the Representation from each State having one Vote; a quorum for this Purpose shall consist of a Member or Members from two-thirds of the States, and a Majority of all the States shall be necessary to a Choice. In every Case, after the Choice of the President, the Person having the greatest Number of Votes of the Electors shall be the Vice President. But if there should remain two or more who have equal Votes, the Senate shall choose from them by Ballot the Vice-President."

Article 2, Section 1 was amended by the 12th Amendment. It was changed so that instead of the winner of the election becoming president and the runner up vice president, the electors cast two distinct votes, one for president, and one for vice president. Other than that, the process remained the same.

There has been many discussions over time to do away with the electoral college, but they have always failed to garner enough support needed to get an amendment passed by Congress for ratification by the states. So until it is changed, we are stuck with it.

So it is actually the votes of these electors who actually choose the president, and vice president for that matter. However, that does not mean that your vote does not count, or at least it didn't used to mean that.

According to the designs of the Constitution, these electors were to '... make a List of all the Persons voted for, and of the Number of Votes for each...'. It would seem that the list would therefore be representative of the popular vote. Remember, the number of electors were chosen '...equal to the whole Number of Senators and Representatives to which the State may be entitled in the Congress...'. It would be thought that the elector chosen for each Congressional district would vote according to the popular vote within their own district. This, however, is not always the case.

"There is no Constitutional provision or Federal law that requires electors to vote according to the results of the popular vote in their States. Some States, however, require electors to cast their votes according to the popular vote. These pledges fall into two categories -- electors bound by State law and those bound by pledges to political parties."

So, it is possible for a candidate to receive a majority of the popular vote in a particular district and have the elector for that district cast their vote for another candidate. This is rare, but it is not unknown.

Another thing that I find particularly disturbing is that fact that 48 out of the 50 states award electoral votes on a winner-takes-all basis. Since I live in California, I will use my state as an example. If 50.1% of the people vote for the democratic candidate, and 49.9% vote for the republican, all 55 of the electoral votes go to the democratic candidate.

I find this disturbing for two reasons. First, it is not a true representation of the popular vote. Remember, the Constitution says, '...And they shall make a List of all the Persons voted for, and of the Number of Votes for each..." When we have a winner takes all policy in place it violates the spirit of the electoral college in which all the persons voted for receive a percentage of the votes for president.

Again, since I am from California, I will refer to the California Election Code, Section 6908, “The electors shall make separate lists of all persons voted for as President and of all persons voted for as Vice President, and of the number of votes for each, which lists they shall sign, certify, seal, and transmit by mail to the seat of the Government of the United States, directed to the President of the Senate.”

If you compare that to what the U.S. Constitution says, you will find that, while it may be worded a bit differently, it is the same as the Constitution. I have written to the Governor and the Secretary of State asking what law authorizes a winner takes all approach in regards to electoral votes, but as of this writing my questions have not been answered.

Secondly, with the prevalence of computers to count ballots, and more recently, electronic voting machines, the idea of a winner takes all, leaves far too much room for fraud and election rigging.

On December 13, 2004, a Mr. Clint Curtis testified before the Judiciary Committee in Ohio regarding vote fraud. The following is a transcript of his testimony.

Curtis: I am a computer programmer, I worked for NASA, I worked for Exxon Mobile, I worked for the Dept. of Transportation.

Q: Mr. Curtis, are there programs that can be used to secretly fix elections?
A: Yes
Q: How do you know that to be the case?
A: Because in October of 2000 I wrote a prototype for present Congressman Tom Feeney in Oviedo Florida that did just that.
Q: And when you say it did just that do you mean it would rig an election?
A: It would flip the vote 51/49 to whoever you wanted it to go to and whichever race you wanted to win.
Q: And would that program be something that you designed be something that elections officials who might be on County Boards of Elections be something they could detect?
A: They would never see it.
Q: So how would such a program, a secret program that fixes elections how could it be detected?
A: You would have to view it in the source code or you would have to have a receipt and then count the hard paper against the vote total, other than that you won't see it.

A sworn affidavit outlining what Mr. Curtis said can be found at,

With the advent of touch screen voting machines, there is even more room for error and fraud. Recent news stories have shown how many such voting machines are easily hacked into. More worrisome is a ruling made in California, “This week, a federal appeals court in California threw out a lawsuit that challenged computerized voting without paper trails, finding that no voting system can eliminate all electoral fraud.”

While all of these problems with voter machine tampering and fraud exist in elections at all levels, I am discussing it now as it pertains to the electoral college and our selection of president of the United States. Josef Stalin once said, “Those who vote decide nothing. Those who count the votes decide everything.” It appears that our system of electing officials, particularly the president, has drifted drastically from what the founders envisioned in the Constitution.

Now that we have discussed how our president is supposed to be elected, I would like to cover the office of the president in a bit more detail. Before a duly elected president can begin his duties, he must first be sworn in. The President-elect places his hand on a Bible and repeats the following oath, “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."

If you recall in Part 1 of this series I stated that you should think of the process of selecting an elected official like a contract. The terms of that contract are to be found in the Constitution. When the President-elect takes that oath, he is agreeing to the terms of that contract. It is absolutely imperative that, as citizens, we thoroughly understand the terms of that contract. If we don’t, how can we be aware of when those who we elect violate it?

Once that oath is taken, the president is bound to uphold the Constitution. It is only logical that we examine what the Constitution says about the duties of president. These duties can be found in Section 2 of Article 2. Briefly they state,

-The President shall be commander in chief of the Army and Navy of the United States, and of the militia of the several states,

-He may require the opinion, in writing, of the principal officer in each of the executive departments, upon any subject relating to the duties of their respective offices

-He shall have power to grant reprieves and pardons for offenses against the United States, except in cases of impeachment.

-He shall have power, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, to make treaties, provided two thirds of the Senators present concur

-He shall nominate, and by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, shall appoint ambassadors, other public ministers and consuls, judges of the Supreme Court, and all other officers of the United States

-The President shall have power to fill up all vacancies that may happen during the recess of the Senate, by granting commissions which shall expire at the end of their next session.

- He shall from time to time give to the Congress information of the state of the union, and recommend to their consideration such measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient;

-He may, on extraordinary occasions, convene both Houses, or either of them, and in case of disagreement between them, with respect to the time of adjournment, he may adjourn them to such time as he shall think proper;

-He shall receive ambassadors and other public ministers;

-He shall take care that the laws be faithfully executed, and shall commission all the officers of the United States.

Those are the powers of the president. Nowhere in those powers does it say he can legislate, or create law. That power belongs to the Congress alone. However, presidents going back to 1789 have issued Executive Orders which come perilously close to creating law.

According to the federal register, “Executive orders are official documents, numbered consecutively, through which the President of the United States manages the operations of the Federal Government.”

Some of these Executive Orders do have the force of law, when they are issued in pursuance of an Act of Congress, when those acts give the President discretionary powers. However, all laws, including those passed by Congress, have to be in accordance with the dictates of the Constitution. If the President issues an Executive Order that violates the authority granted him in the Constitution, it is unconstitutional. One more reason why it is so important for us to be aware of the very limited powers granted to our government in the Constitution. John Adams, our third President once said, “Nip the shoots of arbitrary power in the bud, is the only maxim which can ever preserve the liberties of any people.”

Article 2 states that the president can recommend measures to Congress for their consideration, “He shall from time to time give to the Congress information of the state of the union, and recommend to their consideration such measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient...”

As I have stated numerous times now, all laws passed by Congress must be in accordance with the dictates of the Constitution. Therefore if the president recommends a measure for their consideration, they should deliberate as to whether said recommendation violates the Constitution or not before even drafting a bill for consideration.

Our Congress, at the behest of President Bush to fight his War on Terror has passed numerous pieces of legislation that violate the Constitution in one way or another. Beginning with the Patriot Act, then followed by the John Warner Defense Authorization Act, and the Military Commissions Act, the president has put into place the laws that could shut down every individual right and freedom we the people were outlined in the Declaration of Independence and guaranteed under the Bill of Rights.

The Patriot Act authorizes illegal wire taps, allows for warrant less searches of your home, the inspection of your financial records, and even what books you check out at the library. Section 213 of the Patriot Act, otherwise known as the Sneak and Peek Provision allows any federal law enforcement agency to enter your home or business without you being present to collect evidence and they do not ever have to tell you they have been there. This violates the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution.

Sections 202 & 216 allows any federal law enforcement agency to monitor your internet traffic, read your e mails and intercept all your cell phone calls, if they suspect that you are committing a crime. No warrant is required. This violates the Fourth and Fifth Amendments to the Constitution.

The FBI or any other federal law enforcement agency can come to your business and seize your records if they claim it is part of a terrorist investigation. They can also arrest you if you tell anyone that they were there. This violates the First and Fourth Amendments to the Constitution.

So you think you are safe, you are not a terrorist. Section 802 of the Patriot Act defines domestic terrorism as, "activities that--involve acts dangerous to human life that are a violation of the criminal laws of the United States...and appear to be intended to intimidate or coerce a civilian population; or to influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion..." So do you still think anything you do might not classify you as a domestic terrorist?

After reviewing the Patriot Act, Congressman Ron Paul said that our forefathers would think it is time for a revolution.

The Supreme Court ruled in U.S.v Robel,
"[T]his concept of 'national defense' cannot be deemed an end in itself, justifying any exercise of...power designed to promote such a goal. Implicit in the term 'national defense' is the notion that defending those values and ideas which se this Nation apart...It would indeed be ironic if, in the name of national defense, we would sanction the subversion of one of those liberties...which makes the defense of the Nation worthwhile."

The John Warner Defense Authorization Act allows the president to station troops anywhere within the U.S. in the case of a stated emergency. This violates the Posse Comitatus Act (18 U.S.C.1385).

The Military Commissions Act allows for the president to round up suspected terrorists and hold them indefinitely without legal representation or recourse, basically suspending habeas corpus.

After the civil war, Abraham Lincoln suspended habeas corpus and the Supreme Court made the following ruling, "The Constitution of the Untied States is a laws for rulers and people equally in war and in peace, and covers with the shield of its protection all classes of mean, at all times, and under all circumstance. No doctrine, involving more pernicious consequences, was ever invented by the wit of man than that any of its provisions can be suspended during any of the great exigencies of government."

I believe I have given you just a few examples of how our president, and President Bush is not the only one, have exceeded their authority as defined in the Constitution. I would like to leave you with two quotes by James Madison as I conclude this segment of my continuing piece on Our Dysfunctional Republic,
“If Tyranny and Oppression come to this land, it will be in the guise of fighting a foreign enemy.”

“It is a universal truth that the loss of liberty at home is to be charged to the provisions against danger, real or pretended, from abroad.” be continued

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Our Dysfunctional Republic Part 5

Article 1
The Legislative Branch

NOTE: Before I begin discussing the Constitution and what it actually says, I want to state that it would be worth everyone's time to read it, either before or during my discussion of the various articles. There is no way I can keep these essays brief if I go over each Article in microscopic detail. I am only trying to give an overview of what they say, and give a few examples of how our government is not playing by the rules, so to speak.

As we have already discussed, to legislate means to create laws. Article 1, Section 1of the Constitution states "All legislative powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives."

I would hope that most, if not all, Americans are aware that it is the job of Congress, both the House of Representatives and the Senate, to create the laws which govern this country. However I wonder if they are aware of what the Constitution actually says regarding our Congress, and the limits it places upon what they can actually do.

Each branch of our federal government, as outlined in the Constitution, was set up to provide an intricate set of checks and balances so that no one branch held all the power or encroached upon another branch. This was done on purpose and has since been altered by the 17th amendment, which I will go into shortly.

It is clear by the following quote, found in Federalist #48 by James Madison, that the idea of keeping the individual branches of our government independent of each other was of great importance.

"It is agreed on all sides, that the powers properly belonging to one of the departments ought not to be directly and completely administered by either of the other departments. It is equally evident, that none of them ought to possess, directly or indirectly, an overruling influence over the others, in the administration of their respective powers. It will not be denied, that power is of an encroaching nature, and that it ought to be effectually restrained from passing the limits assigned to it."

Each house of Congress had powers that were specifically theirs. For instance the House of Representatives has the power to impeach, yet the Senate has the power to try those impeachments. The House of Representatives has the authority to proposing bills that raise revenue, while the Senate has the power to add amendments to those bills.

All these separations were put into place for a specific reason, and to tinker with that delicate balance of power was to invite disaster. Article I, Section 3 of the Constitution clearly states that "The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each state, chosen by the legislature thereof..."

In the Federalist Papers, both Alexander Hamilton and James Madison explain why this specific clause was put into the Constitution. In Federalist #27, Hamilton states,

"Various reasons have been suggested, in the course of these papers, to induce a probability that the general government will be better administered than the particular governments; the principal of which reasons are that the extension of the spheres of election will present a greater option, or latitude of choice, to the people; that through the medium of the State legislatures which are select bodies of men, and which are to appoint the members of the national Senate there is reason to expect that this branch will generally be composed with peculiar care and judgment"

In Federalist #62 Madison states, "It is equally unnecessary to dilate on the appointment of senators by the State legislatures. Among the various modes which might have been devised for constituting this branch of the government, that which has been proposed by the convention is probably the most congenial with the public opinion. It is recommended by the double advantage of favoring a select appointment, and of giving to the State governments such an agency in the formation of the federal government as must secure the authority of the former, and may form a convenient link between the two systems."

It was clear that the framers of the Constitution wanted the Senate to be tied to the state legislatures, which would give the states some say in the makeup and decision making of the federal government. All that changed with the 17th Amendment, which reads, "The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each state, elected by the people thereof..." The states no longer have any say in the action of the federal government. The various state legislatures are reduced to mere lobbyists who can only urge the government to act in their behalf, where as before they had direct access via the ability to elect Senators who were beholden to the states.

The 17th Amendment was passed to correct procedural problems in which states went without representation in the Senate due to them being deadlocked when attempting to select a Senator to represent them in Congress. It would have been better to correct this procedural problem while leaving the states the power to select their own Senators. Now the states have slowly begun to lose their sovereignty to the federal government.

Now I would like to take some time to cover the specific powers granted to our Congress according to the Constitution. According to Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution, the Congress is only granted authority to legislate on the following items.

-to lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts and excises

-to pay the debts and provide for the common defense and general welfare of the United States; but all duties, imposts and excises shall be uniform throughout the United States

-To borrow money on the credit of the United States

-To regulate commerce with foreign nations, and among the several states, and with the Indian tribes

-To establish a uniform rule of naturalization, and uniform laws on the subject of bankruptcies throughout the United States

-To coin money, regulate the value thereof, and of foreign coin, and fix the standard of weights and measures

-To provide for the punishment of counterfeiting the securities and current coin of the United States

-To establish post offices and post roads

-To promote the progress of science and useful arts, by securing for limited times to authors and inventors the exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveries;

-To constitute tribunals inferior to the Supreme Court;

-To define and punish piracies and felonies committed on the high seas, and offenses against the law of nations;

-To declare war, grant letters of marque and reprisal, and make rules concerning captures on land and water;

-To raise and support armies, but no appropriation of money to that use shall be for a longer term than two years;

-To provide and maintain a navy;

-To make rules for the government and regulation of the land and naval forces;

-To provide for calling forth the militia to execute the laws of the union, suppress insurrections and repel invasions;

-To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the militia, and for governing such part of them as may be employed in the service of the United States, reserving to the states respectively, the appointment of the officers, and the authority of training the militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress;

-To exercise exclusive legislation in all cases whatsoever, over such District (not exceeding ten miles square) as may, by cession of particular states, and the acceptance of Congress, become the seat of the government of the United States, and to exercise like authority over all places purchased by the consent of the legislature of the state in which the same shall be, for the erection of forts, magazines, arsenals, dockyards, and other needful buildings;--

-To make all laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into execution the foregoing powers, and all other powers vested by this Constitution in the government of the United States, or in any department or officer thereof.

Briefly now I would like to go over some of the authorities that Congress has not followed according to their constitutional mandate.

First off, the Congress has the power to coin money. Repeatedly they have given that power away to a central bank whose only interest is in their own profits. Andrew Jackson, the 17th President of the United States fought long and hard to do away with one of these central banks. Now we are under the influence of the Federal Reserve Bank, another privately owned bank that has been given a charter to coin our money and regulate its value. Thomas Jefferson had this to say about the banking industry, "If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their money, first by inflation and then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around them (around the banks), will deprive the people of their property until their children will wake up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered." Nowhere in the Constitution does it say that the Congresses can give away the power to coin money and regulate its value to privately owned banks, therefore they have no right to do so.

Another power granted to Congress is that of declaring war. This is a touchy subject for many, with our current involvement in Iraq. Yet it is clearly stated that it is the Congress only who can declare war. How many wars have been fought without a declaration of war by Congress? Congress has given the President the authority to use military force, once again in their history, although in my opinion they made a terrible blunder when they stated in the Authorization For Use Of United States Armed Forces by saying, "The President is authorized to use the Armed Forces of the United States as he determines to be necessary and appropriate in order to.." This was a blank check for the president, which he has abused and put our country into serious debt and at the same time increasing anti-American sentiments among a majority of the Arab countries of the world.

Finally the Congress has the power to call forth the militia to "execute the laws of the union, suppress insurrections and repel invasions" The dictionary defines an invasion as, an act or instance of invading, and one of the definitions for invade is to encroach upon. Illegal immigration on the scale with which we now suffer from can be considered nothing less than an invasion. Yet our Congress refuses to call forth the militia to defend our borders. The National Guard has been sent in limited numbers and with severe restrictions upon what it's duties are, so in effect they are useless against the tide of humanity that breaches our nations borders every day. With the current war on terror this is an unacceptable neglect of their constitutional obligation to defend our nation.

Those are just a few examples of their negligence. I am sure if you wanted to you could find more yourself, but for brevities sake I am trying to keep this as short as possible.

The next area of Article I of the Constitution is Section 9, the restrictions placed upon Congress. Section 9 states,

-The migration or importation of such persons as any of the states now existing shall think proper to admit, shall not be prohibited by the Congress prior to the year one thousand eight hundred and eight, but a tax or duty may be imposed on such importation, not exceeding ten dollars for each person.

-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.

-No bill of attainder or ex post facto Law shall be passed.

-No capitation, or other direct, tax shall be laid, unless in proportion to the census or enumeration herein before directed to be taken.

-No tax or duty shall be laid on articles exported from any state.

-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.

-No money shall be drawn from the treasury, but in consequence of appropriations made by law; and a regular statement and account of receipts and expenditures of all public money shall be published from time to time.

-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 are two parts of section 9 that I would like to discuss. The first is this, "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." On September 28, 2006 the Senate signed the Military Commissions Act, which effectively grants the president the power to do just that, suspend habeas corpus for those whom he deems are attempting to harm this country. According to President Bush, the fact that the media was discussing certain policies the president was using in his war on terror was causing our country harm,. "For people to leak that program and for a newspaper to publish it does great harm to the United States of America."

Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont said the following about the Military Commissions Act, "The bill before us would not merely suspend the great writ—the great writ—the writ of habeas corpus, it just eliminates it permanently. " We are not facing any rebellion, not that I am aware of anyway, and we are not being invaded, otherwise our Congress would have called forth the militia to defend us from it. So would Congress sign a bill which does away with such an important right? It is clearly a violation of their Constitutional powers to do so, and it is something you should be deeply concerned about.

Thomas Jefferson had this to say about the suspension of habeas corpus, "Why suspend the habeas corpus in insurrections and rebellions? Examine the history of England. See how few of the cases of the suspension of the habeas corpus law have been worthy of that suspension. They have been either real treasons, wherein the parties might as well have been charged at once, or sham plots, where it was shameful they should ever have been suspected. Yet for the few cases wherein the suspension of the habeas corpus has done real good, that operation is now become habitual and the minds of the nation almost prepared to live under its constant suspension."

The last part of Section 9 I would like to cover is this, "No capitation, or other direct, tax shall be laid..." Yet the 16th amendment changed all that by stating that, "The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several states, and without regard to any census or enumeration." To understand the original intent of the Constitution you need to understand what a capitation is. Capitation, in regards to taxes, is a tax on the wages of the earner. Therefore prior to 1913, when the 16th amendment was ratified, there was no tax on your income.

As I previously mentioned in Part 1 of this series, William Henry Harrison said, “The only legitimate right to govern is an express grant of power from the governed.” Now why would any sane person propose a Constitutional amendment that would impose a tax upon the wages he earned? There are numerous people who have studied this and many have come to the conclusion that the 16th amendment was never properly ratified due to procedural mistakes. I am not here to argue that or not. I only want to discuss that as original designed, the Constitution granted Congress no power to tax your wages.

Jefferson said about taxes, "To lay taxes to provide for the general welfare of the United States, that is to say, 'to lay taxes for the purpose of providing for the general welfare.' For the laying of taxes is the power, and the general welfare the purpose for which the power is to be exercised. They are not to lay taxes ad libitum for any purpose they please; but only to pay the debts or provide for the welfare of the Union."

There are numerous cases presently were people have researched the income tax laws and found them to be invalid. These people have petitioned the government to show them the law that states a persons income is subject to a direct tax. The government has refused to provide this information. Why would our government refuse to settle this once and for all by providing proof that this law exists? It does make you wonder about the validity of the 16th amendment and the continual plunder of the wages of the American public. Whatever the case, it goes against the original intent of the Constitution prior to the ratification of the 16th amendment.

Finally, Section 10 of Article 1 outlines the restrictions placed upon the states by the Constitution. They are as follows,

-No state shall enter into any treaty, alliance, or confederation; grant letters of marque and reprisal; coin money; emit bills of credit; make anything but gold and silver coin a tender in payment of debts; pass any bill of attainder, ex post facto law, or law impairing the obligation of contracts, or grant any title of nobility.

-No state shall, without the consent of the Congress, lay any imposts or duties on imports or exports, except what may be absolutely necessary for executing it's inspection laws: and 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; and all such laws shall be subject to the revision and control of the Congress.

-No state shall, without the consent of Congress, lay any duty of tonnage, keep troops, or ships of war in time of peace, enter into any agreement or compact with another state, or with a foreign power, or engage in war, unless actually invaded, or in such imminent danger as will not admit of delay.

That is it, Article 1, the powers and authority granted to the Legislative branch of our government. I would urge each of you to read through it in its entirety and ponder the things that our government is doing, or considering doing. This is even more important now that an election cycle is underway. Their is talk among many of the candidates of a government health care program. Nowhere in the Constitution does it say the government has the right or authority to mandate health care. There are so many areas that our government has overstepped it's authority that I could go on for pages. I have only just scratched the surface. I am hoping that you will take the time to think about what your congressman and senator is doing and hold them accountable to their oath to uphold the Constitution. After all, without it they have no power to begin with.

to be continued...