I just finished reading a great book “Lincoln Unmasked” by Thomas DiLorenzo who clearly shows how much Lincoln and the Republican Party, many ex members of the failed Whig Party, wanted more central power to the Federal Government. The Whigs, you might say, were the ruling oligarchs of the early 1800s, using corporate welfare, as both major Parties do today, to build some of the rail system in America, despite others railroad companies doing it without government assistance or subsidies.
The Republican Party actually defended southern slavery by explicitly placing it in its 1860 Party Platform and overwhelmingly supported a Constitutional Amendment that would have prohibited the Federal Government from interfering with southern slavery and Lincoln was their Presidential puppet.
Lincoln took office in March 1861 and the first thing he and his Republican cronies did was to raise tariffs on southern goods such as cotton. The Republican Party was so strong at the time that they were imposing up to 200% tariffs on some southern goods as well as other increasing central powers, many such as regulatory oversight on such things like the shipping ports, to of course make sure they collected the tariffs.
Ten Years Back; The Fugitive Slave Act was part of group of laws that passed in United States Congress on September 18, 1850 so it was a pretty important vote yet note the number that did not vote. The Senate vote was 27 Yeas to 12 Nays, with 15 Northerners not voting. The House vote was 109 Yeas to 75 Nays, with 33 Northerners and 15 Southerners not voting. The Party makeup of Congress that year was, in the Senate 36 Dems, 2 Free Soil, 24 Whigs and 1 Other; total 60. For the House it was 113 Dems, 9 Free Soil, 107 Whigs and 2 Other; total 261. For all you died in the wool Democrats, if you think there is a smidgen of decency amongst 99.99% of any political body, you need to have your head examined. Despite court cases and pure human decency, this law allowed northern States to capture and literally sell slaves to the highest bidder, sometimes thankfully, allowing the free blacks to buy their brethren’s freedom.
Lincoln was initially a Whig but when the Party disbanded, he and most others switched to the Republican Party. Lincoln was so notorious for his positions on tarriffs, as soon as he was elected, it prompted seven southern slave states to form the Confederacy before he even took office. During Lincoln’s presidential term, no compromise or reconciliation was ever attempted regarding slavery.
Lincoln was a white separatist and racist. His political position followed Henry Clay in supporting the American Colonization Society program of making the abolition of slavery practical by advocating that freed slaves settle in Liberia on the Africa continent or in Panama in Central America.Based on their previous Party policies, obviously he nor the Republican Party could have cared less about the actual slaves themselves, they wanted greater “Centralized” Government power at the Federal level where power and influence can be bought and sold and the abolition of slavery was just a political tool.
What the Republicans really didn’t want to happen, is to lose the power of tariffs over the southern farmers and the ability to thus take control over the major commercial interests within the United States. They were willing to wage a war costing 620,000 lives to get what they wanted and they weren’t going to take no for an answer. Lincoln even ordered various Military Officers to provoke, however means necessary, the southern States that had seceded, into firing the first shorts at hopefully Fort Sumter where he was sending both additional Naval Ships and Army reinforcements to begin the war if the South would not surrender. He also was doing the same thing off the Florida gulf coast at Fort Pickens. Lieutenant Adam J. Slemmer, in charge of United States forces at Fort Barrancas, determined that Pickens was more defensible than any of the other posts in the area. His decision to abandon Barrancas was hastened when, around midnight of January 8, 1861, his guards repelled a group of local men intending to take the Fort. Some historians suggest that these were the first shots fired by United States forces in the Civil War.
Lincoln and his Republican cronies were preparing for war long before the shots at either Ft. Sumter or Pickens. So lets’ see, Arkansas, North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, South Carolina voted unanimously to secede within several weeks after Lincoln was elected and Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas joined after the Ft. Sumter incedent. Incidentally, no one was injured or killed and the Northern forces surrendered to the South Carolina Militia. Ft. Sumter is in So. Carolina’s geographic jurisdiction thus theoretically and legally, because of the secession, it was their territory. So. Carolina had months before lawfully seceded and provided the necessary Declarations, just as the Colonies had done in 1776 with the Declaration of Independence. Lincoln should have withdrawn his troops and ships but like the British, their motives was to “save the union”; don’t believe that. Had the Republicans not started imposing economically punitive Tariffs on the southern farmers, the prominent livelihood of the entire south, they would not have succeeded in the first place. Slavery was slowly losing ground to the concept of individual rights and the hundreds of thousands of abolitionists throughout the north and south who were fighting for them. People like John Brown gave their lives for antislavery and Lysander Spooner exchanged the potential of a very lucrative law career for writing such provocative books as The Unconstitutionality of Slavery to provide justice and freedom for all, no matter what color, creed or religion.
The Republicans obviously knew the North had a 2:1 advantage in fighting age men and thus a huge advantage, yet it didn’t stop them from abrogating the necessary constitutional provisions to force the war. Perhaps the most unconscionable action by Lincoln and the Republicans was suspending the Writ of Habeas Corpus which gives the government the right to arrest Citizens without either charging them with a crime or letting them ever out of jail. The really unconscionable thing is that despite a Court order, Lincoln did this by a Presidential Executive Order rather than by a Congressional Act. Not only that, he put an arrest warrant out on the Judge, a Supreme Court Justice, that had made the ruling. Fortunately for the Judge and perhaps Lincoln, no law enforcement officers in DC, were willing to enforce the warrant. Lincoln and his administration shut down and arrested northern opposition newspapers, and even killed Citizens who protested. He even had numerous politicians and a number of the entire Maryland Legislators arrested, keeping them in prison at his discretion.
This is not the actions that should have been allowed by a President of the United States of America. Perhaps in the Soviet Union, Nazi Germany, Saudi Arabia, Miramar or some of the other fascist states that exist around the world, but not in the land of the free and the home of the brave. We allowed the Central Government to abrogate constitutional protections and the protections of individual rights and we are still paying for this today, and it has gotten worse.
He and his Republican Cronies – both northern industrialist and the prominent New England Bankers in cahoots with British Bankers, wanted greater central power so badly that they were willing to literally do whatever was necessary to accomplish it, including war. It cost our country both lives and liberty and it continues as the centralized power of the Federal Government has expanded to such a degree that very few constitutional rights, as many government whistle blowers have learned, really exists today to any relevant degree.
The 14th Amendment was ratified July 4, 1868, just after the Civil war or should I now say “The War of Northern Aggression”, as the losers like to call it. It did several things that helped transfer power from the Citizens and the States to the Federal Government. 1. It created Federal Citizenship vs. what had been State Citizenship or at least how it was opined by the various courts as issues of Citizenship and Jurisdiction were brought forth. It reads as if Citizens were to become both, a Federal and a State Citizen. I’m not opposed to this amendment, other than legal results that have occurred from it. What I think it was doing is giving the President and his administration jurisdiction but also it was protecting Citizens who are granted special privileges and immunities by the Federal Government. This is where the problems come in. We have the Bill of Rights that protect our individual rights, yet the Federal Government can grant special privileges and immunities which require the government to usurp various individual rights. It’s, as I often say, an antithetical relationship. The more central powers are increased the less individual rights can be protected. Essentially the socialist/fascist/communist/marxist economic model are that the state has greater privileges and immunities, then do the Citizens have rights. Whereas, the Austrian/Lassie Faire/Free Market/Capitalist model provide superiority of individual rights above the State’s ability to grant privileges and immunities. The fact that they are antithetic to one another cancels the ability for the two models to work well in conjunction with one another, basically nullifying any potential benefits of the Mixed Economic models being tried around the world today. The results of the mixed economic model experiments and they are experimental have had disastrous results in all but the very riches counties and even then there are some huge problems within the systems.
It’s like trying to provide civil rights to slaves. In a democracy, every individual would have a differing opinion as to which civil rights should be extended to the slaves based on their commercial relationship to the utilization of slavery. The slaves of course if allowed to vote, would surely vote themselves greater individual rights than the slave owners. This is why it took so long for humans to abolish slavery and why in many instances today it still exists around the world and criminally concealed by both the private and government sectors. As with most social problems government and private enterprise are in cahoots, making it even more difficult to solve but that is another issue for another article or book.
Now here is why I believe 14th amendment needs to go or at least substantively modified. When Congress is legislating for Federal Citizens, the Judiciary has found that Congress is not bound by the same Constitutional limitations on their powers as when they are legislating for the Citizens of the 50 united States. According to the amendment we are both. Because of this, government as a whole, has tried successfully, I might add, to place all Citizens in the Federal Citizenship jurisdictions. United State Citizens is the legal classification for Federal Citizenship and “Citizen of the United States” is the classification of those Citizens which are of the 50 States. That’s correct, there are two different Citizenships and case law had clarified the differences.
The rationale behind this is that the Federal Government is location in the District of Columbia, ten square miles known as the District of Columbia that is both the jurisdictional seat of the United States of America but also the governmental seat of the Commander and Chief, the US military and its various forts, ports and arsenals. Congress also has jurisdiction is some manner over obviously the 50 United States, Puerto Rico, the America Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, all possession of the United States, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, territorial waters and the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands, based on various agreements and treaties. I found this information in the Internal Revenue Code (IRC) in relation to the nine different taxing jurisdictions that I found.
Obviously with issues of national security, Congress wants to be able to limit some rights and provide some privileges and immunities, hence the distinction between Federal and State Citizenship even those we are afforded both equally under the 14th Amendment. As an example, the District of Columbia (Washington DC) has both a State Personal Income tax and a Federal Personal Income tax for those who live and work in DC, like my niece, of approximately 48% of Income combined for Federal Taxpayers who are in the 39% tax bracket. In this situation, DC is treated as a State, just as one of the other 50 States. Here’s the exact definition in the IRC: United States; The term ‘United States’ when used in a geographical sense includes only the States and the District of Columbia. State; the term ‘State’ shall be construed to include the District of Columbia, where such construction is necessary to carry out the provisions of this title. Now here is an interesting bit of knowledge. In taxing jurisdictions within the Code, the term includes is deemed “limiting” in scope. For this definition the term State only include the District of Columbia. It does not include any of the other 50 States.
This allows Congress to create laws for the District of Columbia when they do not want it to apply or effect any other jurisdictions, except DC such as the State Tax on Income for those living and working in DC. The State Income Tax that DC Residents pay does not apply to anyone else.
Is this a good thing or a necessary thing? It appears that once you give any jurisdiction the power to tax, it is very difficult, perhaps even impossible to curtail their enthusiasm to do so. I’ve read the Internal Revenue Service/the Feds have jurisdiction over approximately 80 difference taxes of the approximate 115 different taxes being imposed by the various levels of government in the United States. The problem with this is that there is too much authority and power in the hands of two few individuals. Because of this, the control of how much taxes is paid has nothing to do with the willingness or desire of the majority to pay the amount of taxes that is legislated. The minority that make a lot of money don’t mind paying whatever amount is legislated because they can afford it. It’s the lower socio-economic levels which have no voice in the matter that can’t afford the high levels being legislated by the rich ruling class. The disconnect between the legislators, their special interests and the average taxpayer is extreme. The disconnect is what causes fascism and the various other totalitarian regimes that have plagued our planet throughout history. This is not what democracy is supposed to be about.
Decentralizing power while maintaining a hierarchal system can work, if the voices of the majority and especially the lower socio-economic levels of society are at least heeded. Many of the founding father knew this however opposition from the ruling oligarchs caused a compromise in the basic and fundamental aspects of our democratic Republic.
The failure of our nation to restrain the powers of centralized government has caused the exact problems that we tried to solve with the creation of our constitutional Republic, “that is Madam, if you can keep it”, is what Franklin was quoted as having said.
The founders initially only allowed the Federal Government to tax through tariffs and import taxes. In hindsight, an obvious mistake that you will see was highly complicit in the true causation of the civil war. Of course the Feds and ruling oligarchy do not want to acknowledge this, nor have they allowed this to be publicized to any degree, but the evidence is overwhelming. They wanted to control the commerce of the entire nation and “slavery” and “saving the union” were merely the war cries.
If the north and south would have segregated, it would not have mattered one iota to the average person; to the bankers and northern industrialist it was another matter. The higher cost of goods that they would have had to pay would have played out into lower profits to the industrialists and smaller loans and less interest paid on those loans to the bankers.
The southerners would have made greater profits and thus been able to better care for their slaves. Don’t get me wrong, the abolition of slavery was an important part of the civil war. The majority of people from both the south and north were abolitionist but those that controlled the power, the Democratic Party were not so enthralled with the notion as the vote count on the Fugitive Slave act points out.
The 14th Amendment was pretty much a scam that rendered a new Citizenship that Congress could directly tax and of course they didn’t mention all the ramifications of the enactment. The first Internal Revenue Law was passed in June of 1864 during the war to pay for the war efforts. Only those individuals under the jurisdiction of the Federal Government; Judges, Federal Officials, military personal and those such as employees of Federally Chartered Corporations such as Railroad Companies and their employees were taxed. It was an “Internal” tax to only those under Federal Jurisdiction.
It’s obvious and self-evident that once emancipation was proclaimed and the slaves freed, they should have had the same rights that existing white Citizens of the States had. All Citizens are equally protected under the Constitution. There was no need to give them some sort of Federal Citizenship nor did any of the whites need any additional rights; they already existed. They just needed enforcement and the Federal Government already had that Constitutional power. They ruling oligarch pulled the wool over, especially the blacks heads, making them think that they were getting something special when what they were doing is placing them under a jurisdiction that was not subject to the same constitutional limitations that white Citizens of the States had. What many of the whites didn’t understand, is that they were also being targeted in very deceptive ways.
The Federal Government’s power drastically increased after the civil war. Government’s greatest concern is always revenue and despite all the exaggerated altruistic rhetoric, revenue collection and jurisdiction play an important role in all regulatory enactments.
I don’t even want to go into Sections 3 of the 14th Amendment because of the arbitrary nature in which Lincoln and the Republicans abrogated the Constitution to suite the desires. Anybody who opposed them were deemed traitors and thus engaged in insurrection. The right of a State to secede from the Union had long been a recognized right since the exception of the Constitution. Basically, this clause prohibited all those in position of power before the war from being involved in politics after they war if they opposed the war or fought against the north.
Clause 4 imposed the war debt on our nations to pay for the enforcement of suppression of so-called insurrections and those deemed to have committed treason against the government. If our founding father would have lost the Revolutionary war, much worst actions and penalties would have been imposed on them, but that doesn’t negate the unconscionable methods utilized by the Republican administration, as a comparison to a despotic monarch our founding fathers fought against.
The 15th Amendment is much like Section 1 of the 14th in that it did not provide or grant any additional rights to anyone that was a Citizen, that they did not already have. So blacks had the right to vote if they were landowners just like white people. It was a feel good Amendment to make the blacks think they were getting specially treatment of some kind. However, like the Federal Government, those in State Government also like to flex their powers and curtail competition at the voter’s booth. It was an enforcement problem that the Federal Government could have easily corrected without this amendment. I only included it in the three because it gave a right that already existed, which is thus an enactment of an existing right. Why didn’t they just pass a simple law that said that all black people now have all the same rights as white people; God forbid!!!
Ah the 16th Amendment; the worst of the three. The power to tax the Citizens directly without apportionment and believe it or not, people are still fighting over this one. A group of Citizens calling themselves the Montana Historians, led by William Benson and Red Beckman discovered in the 1970’s that the 16th Amendment had not been properly ratified in 1913, and despite this, the then Secretary of State Philander Knox certified it as the 16th Amendment. The courts despite the empirical evidence, notarized documents of the vote counts and verbiage from all the State capitals involved in the amendment and being published in a two volume book, rubber stamped Knox’s actions. Having read the book it’s very clear that the verbiage from some of the States was not the same, which is required, and that some States did not even ratify the amendment. It was 1913 and the Federal government has seized substantive powers. As with all political bodies they wanted more power and taxation and greater regulatory power is how that is obtained.
The Federal Government was initially set up and ran off of a luxury import tax so not one single cent was paid to the Federal Government by any Citizen of the United States. Foreigners trying to sell their goods to Americans did. Thomas Jefferson was able to run the entire US government and his administration with a surplus. He of course was an anti-federalist and believed in limited and decentralized government. The idea was that if the Federal Government did need money, it could get it through the States, subject to apportionment, i.e. proportionally based on the number of Citizens in each State and collected by each State with the tax obviously agreed to by the legislatures of each States and then and only then, the revenue transferred to the Federal Government. This made the enactment of any tax or government program much more difficult for the Federal Government to enact and enforce which was obviously the reason they set it up this way and why those, such as the folks from Montana Historians, though it was so important to get the truth out about the erroneous 16th Amendment.
It is as much a matter of States Rights as it is anything else. Today a State Representative and even State Senators are worthless peanuts in the field of dreams pursuing democracy. The Federalist Society and its proponents have been triumphant in their quest for power. The Citizen today is overpowered by the Municipal, Country, State and Federal Governments, as each is, beholden to and fearful of the next higher layer of politics. Congress does not have to ask the States or the people for any permissions but they will withhold funding if challenged. They’re free to tax, spend and regulate at their whim and compromise along with their fellow congresspersons, rubberstamped by a Federal Judiciary, they employ. It has become a cabal; morally and economically bankrupt and out of control with no realistic means of harnessing their run away powers, other than the very powers afforded to we the people to amend our Constitution.
The Federal Government has not been able to restrain their spending and have placed upon the shoulders of the Citizens a tax code so inexplicable and undecipherable that President Jimmy Carter coined it “a disgrace to the human race”. Title 26, the Internal Revenue Code, consisting of 9,045 pages has not even been able to be placed into the category of Positive Law, for reasons perhaps few even know.
Due to our politician’s greed and the majority’s ignorance, we have allowed too much power in the hands of too few people. Exactly the opposite of what our Constitution intended.
Reverting back to the system which requires approval of the Legislators of all the 50 States for both taxation and spending will once again put State and individual rights back into the preview of We the People and our local Representatives where it belongs. The Federal Administration and Congress will once again have to provide the Citizens and “all” of our Representatives with all the facts and rationale to either directly tax the Citizens or spend one red cent of it.
The 17th Amendment was for the direct election by the people of United States Senators. Not a horrible Amendment because it can be argued the democracy is not really the great institution we have been led to believe. Due to compromise, special money interests, lack of socio-economic knowledge by the voters and people voting for their own self-interest, all democractic systems, no matter how they’ve been designed over history, have all ended up failing over time. It can be argued that when Senators were elected by their State Legislatures, it gave more power to the States since the Senators were directly responsible to first the State Legislators and then the Citizens themselves, thus minimizing Federal powers. I can see the merits in this.
If all four of these amendments were repealed, except for the fluff portions of the 14th and 15th, it would help transfer Federal decision making powers to tax and thus spend from the Federal Government back to the States, as was initially intended and initiated.
However this does not fully decentralize the power that has accumulated in Washington. The Feds still have the power to borrow money or even create money out of thin air, thus potentially debasing the currency and causing inflation.
Guess who also did this during their administration; yep good old honest Abe. Inflation does not have a horrible effect on everyone, but for especially the older on fixed incomes and the lower socio-economic levels of society whose salaries never realistically keep pace with rising prices, it is devastating and why 1 in 3 people in America today, are at or near the poverty line.
According to Murray Rothbards’, “A History of Money and Banking in the United States”, following several monetary enactments, the Legal Tender Act of 1862 and the National Currency Acts of 1863 and 1964, “In that way, the Republican Party, which inherited the Whig’s admiration for paper money and government controls and sponsorship of inflationary banking, was able to implant the soft-money tradition permanently into the American system”. It replaced the system which had flourished under the predominately free market Independent Treasury System for 35 years and the “greenback dollars became so devalued that by 1864 they were worth only 35 cents in gold, even though they were not issued until mid-1863. Thomas DiLorenzo wrote “The Republican Party establishment created a system whereby almost all currency was issued by just a few Wall Street banks closely affiliated with the Party”. Heather Cox Richardson’s book “The Greatest Nation on Earth”, quotes Senator John Sherman as saying that the Republican Parties objective was “to nationalize as much as possible, even the currency, so as to make men love their country before their States”.
Is this not, pretty much what we have today, and it was Lincoln, a pro central banking Whig Party member that campaigned for a Senatorial seat in Illinois under the short and sweet mantra of a “national bank, internal improvements (corporate welfare) and high protective tariffs. By the time he was killed, he and his new, ex-Whig, Republicans fostered in high tariffs, paper money that they could print and pass out through their banking cronies causing inflation at will. These policies are the real reasons behind the Civil War and slavery and save the union were only the war cries.
If it were my call, I would prohibit Congress and the Federal Government from doing just about anything without the consent of the States and We the People. From warfare to welfare to internal improvements, the Federal government is bankrupting our society with more pork and power then our Citizens can handle. Repealing the 14th thru the 17th Amendments would do a great deal to harness the runaway tax and spend policies of the Federal Government. Controlling or better yet prohibiting the Federal Government’s ability to print paper money and borrow almost unlimited amounts of money without the consent of the States and We the People, would be icing on the cake.