Monday, March 28, 2005

The Imperial Legislature

The Terri Schiavo case is almost over. Her parents have given up their legal challenges, and the media frenzy seems to be subsiding. The case is truly tragic, It should wake up people to the fact that they should have a living trust completed or at the very least, written instructions of your wishes if you are brain dead or in a state like Ms. Schiavo. Although the "right to die"aspect is very important to a libertarian like myself, it is not the primary issue. The right to die issue will be dealt with in a future article.

My primary concern is the usurpation of authority and power by the Federal government, in particular, the Congress and President. During the media frenzy, the US Congress passed an unconstitutional bill transfering Ms. Schiavo's case into federal court and the President, in his crass opportunist style, flew back to Washington from his ranch in Crawford, Texas to sign the bill. The case is clear. The state of Florida has a legislature, courts, a governor, and last time I checked doctors to evaluate this case. Now my personal belief is that even the state of Florida's intrusion in the case is wrong because it is a personal ,private, family matter that happens every day in the USA. That aside, Florida would still be constitutionally the proper venue for this case.

Congress and the President's behavior reminds me of another tyrannical legislature and executive. From 1764 to 1776 the American colonists revolted against what they perceived as the central government in London, consisting of the British Parliament and King, depriving them of self government. This was done through tyrannical acts like the Declatory Act, the Massachusetts Government Act, the suspension of the New York legislature in 1767, the Intolerable Acts closing the Port of Boston, and the Stamp Act. All of these laws exaulted the supremecy of the British Parliament as stated in the Declatory Act " to bind the colonies in all cases whatsoever". The revolt against taxation was one of many issues mainly related to a large tyrannical foreign central government depriving the people of self government. This in essence was the main crux of the American Revolution. Now let's fast forward to today.

Today the Federal government exercises power over the ordinary lives of the American people in ways that the British Parliament would never have dreamed of. Today Congress totally ignores Article 1, Sec 8 of the US Constitution which deliniates it's powers. Instead they pass laws on health care, labor relations, intrastate commerce, divorce, child custody issues, marriage, common law crimes ( murder, robbery etc) , and race relations. All of these areas and more ,violate the Jeffersonian principle of a limited government bound "by the chains of the Constitution" and instead set up an unlimited government. There is now no area that Congress does not regulate.

We must get our central government under control before it completely destroys the very liberty the American Revolution was meant to secure. The President and his corrupt allies continue to appeal to their evangelical base who show no opposition to centralized government, as long as they control it. We must learn from this tragic case that centralized government is never the answer, nor the solution to any of our personal matters. Governments exist to secure our natural rights and protect us from harm, not to steal our liberty.

Let's hope we can all learn from this case. If not, we will be ruled from Washington by the Imperial Legislature.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

The Right to Revolution

Om July 4, 1776 the American Republic was born. After roughly 12 years of opposition to the tyrannical and anti-liberty policies of the British government, the American Declaration of Independence, written by Thomas Jefferson, laid out the essence of what the ideals of the American Revolution were all about

" We hold these Truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of happiness. That to secure these Rights, Governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, that whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying it's Foundations on such Principles and organizing such Powers in such form as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and that accordingly all Experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while Evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the Forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of Abuses and Usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object, envinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their Right, it is their Duty to throw off such Government, an to provide new Guards for their future Security."

Such is the language of the libertarian belief in the natural right of the people to overthrow, violently, if necessary, a tyrannical government. This right had been articulated earlier in history by the English Levellers, and the radicals of the English revolutions of the 17th century, particularly John Locke, Algernon Sidney and the English Levellers John Liliburne and Richard Overton. History has proven it is the nature of all governments to become corrupt and oppress their people. Vigilence is required to keep a government free and committed to protecting the liberties of the people. These principles were next articulated by the American Revolutionaries, as shown above, and even by the revolutionaries of the French Revolution.

The principle of overthrowing a government has always been something the conservative rulers of the United States have been uncomfortable with and have always tried to keep hidden. Instead we are taught in school to be good little citizens, obey the government, inform on lawbreakers, and trust those in authority. Fortunately for those who want to educate themselves about the principles of the American Revolution there is a rich history of what were once called "English Liberties" which were then translated into "civil liberties", "sovereignty of the people", and the right of resistance to oppression. Our tradition of state's rights as articulated in the Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions, , and the many writings of Jefferson and James Madison
show that limited government with defined powers and a written constitution are all outgrowths of the radicalism that started in Great Britian as far back as the Magna Carta. Things we take for granted: the protection of habeus corpus, trial by jury, representative institutions, individual liberty, and due process.

The ideals which governments embrace today oppose our traditions and ideals. Their ideals are ones of centralized government, a powerful standing military, high taxes, favored individuals and corporations, war, and the suffocation of individual liberty through such laws as hate crimes, anti-discrimination laws, and laws by adminstrative decree. These "ideals" are strangling our civil society and are soon to completely annhilate our liberty. These "Ideals" are the ideals of Thomas Hobbes, Sir Robert Filmer, and Edmund Burke, all spokesmen for aristocracy, centralized government and the rule of the few over the many.

We must do all we can to combat these tyrannies and embrace our revolutionary history and principles. Hopefully any revoluton can be accomplished through peaceful, legal, and educational means. Unfortunately most rulers do not give up their powers easily or without a fight. Let's hope we never have to use our natural right to revolution, but always keep it's flame alive.

Saturday, March 12, 2005

What this Site is about

The Jeffersonian libertarian is a blog devoted to the ideals and philosophy of Thomas Jefferson and the principles of the American Revolution. We at the Jeffersonian are defenders of republican government, freedom of religion, individual liberty, free trade and free markets, and limited powers for govenment. We are also believers in Jeffersonian and libertarian radicalism as opposed to the quiet moderation of the current libertarian movement. Our goal is to reinvigorate the American political polity to maximize liberty and destroy statism.

We are opposed to the following: communism, socialism, monarchism, aristocracy, corporatism, conservatism, fascism, and all other liberty destroying philosophies. These philosophies all have in common the glorification of the state or it's parasite class. They regularly stamp out liberty, individualism, freedom, and install in their place aristocracy, corruption, elitism, domination and hierarchy. We, as Jeffersonians reject outright such evil philosophies.

Currently the US Government is promoting evil ideals listed above through perpetual war, statism at home and abroad, and assaulting the civil liberties and natural rights of American citizens with impunity. The United States, a nation born out of a radical revolution, and a product of the first war of national liberation , has become the most conservative and reactionary of nations. This is an absolute tragedy for not only the American people, but the world. We now must move forward and embrace the classical liberalism of the American Revolution and use it to guide our future. We have 200 years of history as experience and we must heed it's warnings.

We reject both right and left. Both encourage despotism and centralized government. Both usually consist of sadistic and power hungry individuals who wish to rule over others. On the Right, we have the imperialist "conservatives". These "conservatives" are really the Old European order in Americam form. They are the order which propped up kings, priests, and nobles to rule and reign over serfs and common people and who opposed all change and reduction of power so they could keep themselves in their positions of noblity and government. They have attempted over the last 200 years to engraft upon the American Republic these ideals, and replace the ideals of the American Revolution. This was begun in the 1790's by Alexander Hamilton and has been opposed by lovers of liberty ever since.

The Left is also a group enamored with European ideals of government. They are the promoters of strong centralized government, the abolition of all civil rights and the imposition of a planned economy. Like their conservative "enemies" they also favor aristocracy and rule by the few over the many. The few they promote are the ones that rule "the Party". They then rule over a poverty stricken and ignorant peasantry while they live lavishly in mansions and "dachas" as they were called in the Soviet Union.

These supposed opposing philosophies are really kindred spirits. Both want to turn back the clock to a time before the Enlightenment. This was a time when absolute monarchies, theocracy, superstition, and despotism reigned supreme.
It was called the Dark Ages.

Hopefully this site will as Jefferson stated "spread light and liberality" throughout the blogosphere.