December 6, 2011
It is well documented that many of America’s Founding Fathers had a very real and deep-seated distrust of standing armies—and for good reason. They had just fought a costly and bloody war for independence, which had been largely predicated upon the propensities for the abuse and misuse of individual liberties by a pervasive and powerful standing army (belonging to Great Britain) amongst them.
Listen to Thomas Jefferson:
“I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies.” Note that Jefferson identified both banking institutions and standing armies as being “dangerous to our liberties.”James Madison said,
“A standing army is one of the greatest mischief that can possibly happen.” Elbridge Gerry (Vice President under James Madison) called standing armies “the bane of liberty.”
For the most part, the sentiments of our founders ring hollow to modern Americans who, ever since World War II, have glorified, idolized, and practically even worshipped the standing US military. But of course, with only isolated instances (which were almost always completely covered up by the mainstream news media) of the abuse of military power being committed against US citizens, the American people, as a whole, have no point of reference directing them to the sagacity of America’s founders on the subject.
Indeed, who could even imagine that US military forces would ever be used against the US citizenry? After all, the media did a masterful job of covering up the most flagrant example of US military forces being used against US citizens when US military forces assisted federal law enforcement agencies in slaughtering the Branch Davidians outside Waco, Texas, on April 19, 1993. So, most Americans simply shut their eyes against that “painful truth” and chose to ignore the fact that it even happened.
Yes, there have been isolated instances of military personnel abusing their authority against American citizens (i.e., Waco in 1993, Kent State University in 1970), but overall the founders’ deep-seated distrust of standing armies has been replaced with deep-seated trust. But were our founders right to be distrusting of standing armies? And are we wrong to be so trusting of standing armies? Consider the following report by Dr. Andrew Bosworth.
“There is a shocking piece of legislation working its way through Congress. A Defense Authorization bill for 2012 allows for military detentions of American citizens on American soil. These can be indefinite detentions, with no trial.”
Bosworth quotes an ACLU (an organization whose efforts regarding the so-called “separation of church and state” issues I strongly oppose, but whose efforts regarding issues that can only be identified as an emerging police state I strongly support) statement as saying,
“The U.S. Senate is considering the unthinkable: changing detention laws to imprison people—including Americans living in the United States itself—indefinitely and without charge.
“The Defense Authorization bill—a “must-pass” piece of legislation—is headed to the Senate floor with troubling provisions that would give the President—and all future presidents—the authority to indefinitely imprison people, without charge or trial, both abroad and inside the United States.”
Especially egregious are sections 1031 and 1032. They:
1) Explicitly authorize the federal government to indefinitely imprison without charge or trial American citizens and others picked up inside and outside the United States;
(2) Mandate military detention of some civilians who would otherwise be outside of military control, including civilians picked up within the United States itself; and
(3) Transfer to the Department of Defense core prosecutorial, investigative, law enforcement, penal, and custodial authority and responsibility now held by the Department of Justice.
Bosworth also notes that,
“The bill was drafted in secret by Sens. Carl Levin (D-Mich.) and John McCain (R-Ariz.) and passed in a closed-door committee meeting, without even a single hearing.”
Bosworth goes on to say,
“Even mainstream, apolitical Americans would be concerned about such a provision that, on its face, is unconstitutional. Ordinary Americans are already waking up to the specter of tyranny, and the NDAA for 2012 would accelerate that process.”
Near the conclusion of Bosworth’s report, he states,
“As many Americans know, for over a decade there have been dozens of pieces of legislation and executive orders that have chipped away at the US Constitution, specifically at its Bill of Rights.
“The ‘war on terror’ was originally to be waged against foreigners in far-away lands, but Rep. Ron Paul was right, the anti-terror infrastructure is swinging around to be used against American citizens.”
See Bosworth’s report at:
I well remember when my friend LT CDR Ernest “Guy” Cunningham conducted his “Combat Arms Survey” to 300 active-duty Marines at the USMC’s Air-Ground Combat Center, Twentynine Palms, California, back on May 10, 1994. A couple of questions in this survey were especially revealing (and startling). John McManus picks up the story at this point:
“One of the questions asked the Marines if they would be willing to be assigned to a ‘national emergency police force’ within the U.S. under U.S. command. The survey showed that 6.0 percent strongly disagreed, 6.3 percent disagreed, 42.3 percent agreed, 43.0 percent strongly agreed, and 2.3 percent had no opinion.”
Commenting on these results, Cunningham said,
“Do you realize that 85.3 percent agreed with assigning troops to a mission that violates the Posse Comitatus Act?”Remember, these were active duty Marines back in 1994.
Responses to another question were even more startling. Cunningham’s question:
“Consider the following statement: I would fire upon U.S. citizens who refuse or resist confiscation of firearms banned by the U.S. government.”The result:
“42.3 percent strongly disagreed with this statement; 19.3 percent disagreed; 18.6 percent agreed; 7.6 percent strongly agreed; and 12.0 percent had no opinion.”This equates to approximately 61% of Marines saying they would defy orders to turn their weapons on US citizens in order to disarm them; 26% saying they would not disobey such orders; and 12% refusing to say one way or the other, which means you could probably add them to the 26% who would not disobey orders to turn their weapons on American citizens.
See McManus’ report at:
Not too long ago, I asked a retired US Army Major General what he thought the results would be today if CDR Cunningham gave that same survey to US Marines? He said he thought that the number of those refusing such orders would be much higher and the number of those complying with such orders would be much lower. Given the Levin/McCain bill currently working its way through the US Congress, I sure hope he’s right! And I also hope that we modern Americans were not wrong to discard our founders’ distrust of standing armies.For we are opposed around the world by a monolithic and ruthless conspiracy that relies on covert means for expanding its sphere of influence... Its preparations are concealed, not published. Its mistakes are buried, not headlined. Its dissenters are silenced, not praised. No expenditure is questioned, no rumor is printed, no secret is revealed. - President John F. Kennedy, April 27, 1961
Uploaded by SmokinJoeTrainer on December 8, 2011
December 8, 2011
COMMENT: Again, this remains unconfirmed but would be very significant if verified. We will update once this information has been vetted.
The below tip was posted on the official Oath Keepers Facebook Page by user “Pat Lowe.” We are in the process of verifying this tip, so it is as of yet unconfirmed, but we wanted you to be aware of it (it certainly would be good news for a change!). We will post and send out updates as we confirm and verify.
Message on Oath Keepers Facebook Page:
I hope you enjoy this great news as I did when I was told.
OUTSTANDING!! I just left my neighbors house. Devon is with the National Guard for this area. He just got home from a EDRE (emergency deployment readiness exercise) at the armory. He said that during the exercise 3 companies of infantry were polled by questionnaire about the drill and it’s purpose.
One of the questions was, will you as a member of the Nat. Guard use lethal force against the American public if ordered to do so? One of the men stepped forward and refused to take the poll and explained that it was a moral judgement on his part and that he could not do so. He then placed his weapon on the ground and fell in behind the formation. Devon said it was like a waterfall: Every member layed their weapons on the deck and fell in beside the one lone specialist. This included ALL NCO’s, STAFF NCO’s and SENIOR NCO’s. The only people left in front of the original formation was 3 Capt’s. 2 Lt’s and the BN Commander who was so upset he started having chest pains from yelling and screaming about court martials and disbandment of the unit into other units.
Devon is a Mstr.Sgt and he went with his troops and told them that he could not be prouder of any of them. He was floating while he was telling me this. Maybe we have more than just hope on our side. SEMPER FI. my thanks for the honor of being here Robert.
We hold these Truths to be self-evident...
By Carl Herman, Examiner
September 18, 2009
Among hundreds of writers, I’ve documented overwhelming evidence that the US is waging illegal Wars of Aggression, the worst crime a nation can commit. I’ve also documented the OBVIOUS lies political “leadership” from both parties told and still tell to justify these campaigns for empire. I’ve given historical context of Abraham Lincoln doing the same as a freshman in Congress pointing out the OBVIOUS lies justifying invasion of Mexico.
The Left and Right arms of the one oligarchic political body will not prosecute each other, of course. These politicians are not merely lying sacks of spin; their crimes are treason against the United States because they’ve killed over 5,000 American troops. They betray their oath of office to protect and defend the US Constitution each and every day. Some of us suggest Truth and Reconciliation (T&R) as a strategy to peel-away people who are want to safely provide information to restore the US Constitution and American values.
Here’s the short and sweet point: once the facts of our government’s “leaders” are revealed (and you’d damn better do your research if you call yourself a citizen), then every man and woman who’s sworn an oath to protect and defend the US Constitution against all enemies, foreign and DOMESTIC, must act to incapacitate those who violate the Constitution.
Laws are supposed to be as easy to understand as rules in sports because they’re meant to be obeyed. The US currently has fascist policies such as invading countries who pose no threat, torture, indefinite imprisonment, $2.3 trillion of our dollars “missing” from the Department of Defense: these are OBVIOUS violations against the Constitution that kills millions and destroys the joy of life from the rest of us.
This message doesn’t get much clearer than the one you’re reading. I know embracing these facts is painful. But either stand up for the Constitution or God help you; the oligarchs stripping our nation will not.
The Los Angeles Times reported on a group, “Oathkeepers,” who request all men and women in military and government to understand and keep their oath to the Constitution. Oathkeepers promise to disobey the following ten orders (military law may also require to arrest those who issue un-constitutional orders):
- We will NOT obey orders to disarm the American people.
- We will NOT obey orders to conduct warrantless searches of the American people.
- We will NOT obey orders to detain American citizens as “unlawful enemy combatants” or to subject them to military tribunal.
- We will NOT obey orders to impose martial law or a “state of emergency” on a state.
- We will NOT obey orders to invade and subjugate any state that asserts its sovereignty.
- We will NOT obey any order to blockade American cities, thus turning them into giant concentration camps.
- We will NOT obey any order to force American citizens into any form of detention camps under any pretext.
- We will NOT obey orders to assist or support the use of any foreign troops on U.S. soil against the American people to “keep the peace” or to “maintain control."
- We will NOT obey any orders to confiscate the property of the American people, including food and other essential supplies.
- We will NOT obey any orders which infringe on the right of the people to free speech, to peaceably assemble, and to petition their government for a redress of grievances.
As always, please share this article with all who say they support the rule of law under the US Constitution. If you appreciate my work, please subscribe by clicking under the article title (it’s free).
“The time is now near at hand which must probably determine whether Americans are to be freemen or slaves; whether they are to have any property they can call their own; whether their houses and farms are to be pillaged and destroyed, and themselves consigned to a state of wretchedness from which no human efforts will deliver them. The fate of unborn millions will now depend, under God, on the courage and conduct of this army. Our cruel and unrelenting enemy leaves us only the choice of brave resistance, or the most abject submission.” – George Washington, Address to the Continental Army before the Battle of Long Island (27 August 1776)
“On the other hand, we denounce with righteous indignation and dislike men who are so beguiled and demoralized by the charms of pleasure of the moment, so blinded by desire, that they cannot foresee the pain and trouble that are bound to ensue; and equal blame belongs to those who fail in their duty through weakness of will, which is the same as saying through shrinking from toil and pain. These cases are perfectly simple and easy to distinguish. In a free hour, when our power of choice is untrammeled and when nothing prevents our being able to do what we like best, every pleasure is to be welcomed and every pain avoided. But in certain circumstances and owing to the claims of duty or the obligations of business it will frequently occur that pleasures have to be repudiated and annoyances accepted. The wise man therefore always holds in these matters to this principle of selection: he rejects pleasures to secure other greater pleasures, or else he endures pains to avoid worse pains.” - Marcus Tullius Cicero, On Duties: The Extremes of Good and Evil, 44 BCE, translated by H. Rackham (1914).Carl Herman is a National Board Certified Teacher in economics, government, and history. His hobby is research, education, and lobbying for improved public policy. He can be reached at Carl_Herman@post.harvard.edu.
December 10, 2011
In the short span of a century and a half, the US went from a government famously described by Abraham Lincoln as “of the people, by the people, for the people” to one “of the Elites, by the Elites, for the Elites.”
Albert J. Nock referenced Lincoln’s phrase as “probably the most effective single stroke of propaganda ever made in behalf of republican State prestige.” Perhaps, but when Lincoln said it our country had at least some resemblance to Lincoln’s description.
This country, founded on personal liberty, freedom and limited government, has morphed into a massive Social Welfare State rivaling the paragons of Socialism in Europe. The concept of government serving the people no longer applies. The people now serve their government and its cronies.
The Founding Fathers would not recognize what has transpired in this country. Their creation and ideals have been savagely distorted if not destroyed forever. In its place stands the detested evil that results from increasingly unbridled power. The image of Leviathan ruthlessly ruling over its citizens is faintly visible. Each violation of The Constitution and The Rule of Law only strengthens the growing monster.
Two Views of Government
Two diametrically opposed views of government played a role in our metamorphosis:
1. Government as Passive, Unbiased Referee
The concept of government as an honest broker used to be acceptable to many (although probably not the Founding Fathers). Fifty or sixty years ago this view was reflected in statements like: “If you can’t trust your government, who can you trust?” Today, few make such statements outside of comedy club routines.
Even the libertarian Milton Friedman believed, for a time, that government could be an unbiased referee. When asked late in life about his biggest mistake, he replied that some early policy recommendations he made were based on this erroneous assumption.
If government was honest and unbiased, it would be reasonable to grant it a larger role than if it were not. However, even this unrealistic assumption cannot justify the excessive government of today.
2. Government as Active Player
Public Choice Theorists, like Nobel Laureate James Buchanan and Gordon Tullock, provided an alternative view of government that was consistent with that of the Founders. They saw government as just another institution in the sense that it is populated by self-interested individuals. As such, it would be an active player in the economy and society to the extent possible.
So long as these individuals could benefit from outcomes, government could not be an honest broker. In their view, those who “serve” are no different from the “greedy” businessman who politicians regularly condemn.
This view of human nature drove the Founders to develop The Constitution, The Bill of Rights and the separation of powers in an attempt to contain misbehavior by government. Public Choice theory is merely a modern intellectual affirmation of what our educated Founders knew two and one-half centuries ago.
Government is necessarily run by self-interested individuals until we discover a way to breed and elect angels. Friedrich Hayek, among others, argued that a biased process attracts and enables the “worst” to succeed in government. (See “The Road to Serfdom” for his reasoning).
Passive and unbiased government is not impossible, merely highly improbable. Noble phrases like “public service” are should be seen as modern day examples of what Nock saw as self-serving propaganda.
What Does This Mean?
Public Choice theorists deal with the difficulties of providing the proper incentives and disincentives to prevent self interest from exploiting positions in government. Charles R. Anderson recently used a taxonomy that is consistent with Public Choice and history. He described two orientation of government — principled versus pragmatic.
Mr. Anderson’s description of the two follows:
1) A government which is highly limited by principle in power and scope to the purpose of protecting the equal, sovereign rights to the individual to life, liberty, property, the ownership of one’s own mind and body, and the pursuit of personal happiness. This is the legitimate government envisioned by the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.
2) A so-called pragmatic government not restricted by principle to a limited scope and with few powers which is inclined to bestow special privileges on special interests. Such a government may be a democracy, an oligarchy, a one-party state, or a dictatorship and it must of necessity trample the rights of the individual because our personal interests are too diverse for government to foster all of our interests. It must pick which interests it will favor and which it will suppress. It violates the principle that government should do no harm.
The principled view of government is equivalent to the ideal type of the Passive, Unbiased Referee. The pragmatic is government equivalent to Active Player. Viewed on a continuum, the US government began as principled and degenerated over time to pragmatic. Democracies of other countries seem to have followed a similar path.
Unless the proper incentives and disincentives are in place, government will turn from principled to pragmatic. Putting them into place is difficult while keeping them in place is likely impossible. Individuals have incentives to break free from “rules” that prevent self indulgence. Where these same people make and enforce the rules, containing government is likely an intractable problem.
Over time, the binding constraints are changed to benefit those in power. That is what happened in the US. For political scientists this natural degenerative process of government may provide the basis for an interesting doctoral dissertation dealing with the cycle of civilizations and the rise and fall of nations.
There is a clear progression from pragmatic to corrupt government. There is no countervailing force to reverse this progression. Those wielding power have incentives only to expand power and personal benefits. No one outside of government has the power to overrule government. At some point in the accretion of power, the ballot box is obsolete.
No country or civilization of which I am aware has ever reversed this degenerative process. It is dangerous as Ludwig von Mises observed:
It is important to remember that government interference always means either violent action or the threat of such action. Government is in the last resort the employment of armed men, of policemen, gendarmes, soldiers, prison guards, and hangmen. The essential feature of government is the enforcement of its decrees by beating, killing, and imprisoning. Those who are asking for more government interference are asking ultimately for more compulsion and less freedom.
From a short-term perspective, the deterioration in government is barely noticeable. It proceeds slowly, in the same manner and to the same effect as rust or erosion. Looked at from a wider time perspective it is easy to see as some of these examples illustrate:
In the late 1800s, President Grover Cleveland, when criticized by a member of his own party, responded:
“What is the use of being elected or re-elected unless you stand for something?” Contrast that with Rahm Emanuel’s statement in 2008: “Never let a good crisis go to waste.”In Cleveland’s time there was still a sense of “doing the right thing.” Today politics and self-interest are the ends. “Right” is anything which advances a political agenda.
Prior to 1913, there was no permanent income tax or Federal Reserve in this country. Government ran mostly balanced budgets, funding operations via excise taxes and tariffs. When government debts were incurred, they were usually paid off within several years.
Inflation was an oddity before the Federal Reserve. During the nineteenth century, arguably the fastest growth period in our history, declining prices were the norm. Only during the War of 1812 and the Civil War in the 1860s was inflation a problem. Even with those wars, prices were lower at the end of that century than the beginning.
Since the formation of the Federal Reserve about 100 years ago, inflation is a constant. The Fed has systematically destroyed the purchasing power of the dollar and with it many types of savings. This institution, sold to the American public as necessary to protect the dollar, has destroyed 95 cents of every dollar since its formation.
The nature of government and our attitudes toward it have changed dramatically. President John F. Kennedy’s views would not be acceptable to today’s Democrat party. He could be considered too conservative for many modern-day Republicans.
The humorous definition of a “great statesman” used to be a “dead politician.” For politicians who have expired within the last fifty or so years, there are few great statesment, even by this gratuitous definition.
Attacks on the Rule of Law and the Constitution, coupled with the general decline in ethical norms, enabled the inmates to take control of the asylum. Now we face a situation described rather bluntly by D. Sherman Okst:
Plutocracy allows them to do what you and I would be jailed for doing. Being a legislator today is a get out of jail and get rich card. Congress isn’t a place to serve the public, it isn’t where you go to honor your country — it is where you go to earn wealth 150% faster than the American that serves you while you screw them.
There is no viable political solution. Choosing between Corruption Faster (Democrats) and Corruption Slower (Republicans) does not change the destination, merely the rate at which the public is plundered. Government is too large and too powerful to allow itself to be dismantled via the ballot box. Yet it is also too large, too inefficient and too insolvent to survive.
A mercy killing, administered by an economic collapse, will provide a meaningful opportunity to address the political problem and return to limited government. Such an event, unfortunately, also opens the possibility of a totalitarian state.
Great pain lies ahead. The only issue is whether it will be short-term (say ten years) or long-term as in the old Soviet Union. Be aware of what lies ahead and prepare as best you can.
Sen. Jay Rockefeller Quips About World Domination, Bilderberg:
Sen. Jay Rockefeller Quips About World Domination, Bilderberg, Trilateral Commission and rule by the rich. Clip aired on C-SPAN on 10-19-1991. Jay Rockefeller is so funny I forgot to laugh. (By the way, no wonder Pat Buchanan doesn’t support Austrian economics.) - A Rockefeller Hides in Plain Sight, December 5, 2011, LewRockwell.com
December 12, 20111
What do people like Gandhi, Martin Luther King and John Lennon all have in common? Well, they were all extremists, extremists who wouldn’t hurt a fly. In a world where violence and oppression is the norm, those of us who dare to seek peace and freedom are automatically labeled as dangerous extremists.
I guess this makes some sense, considering that peace and freedom is extremely different from the values that truly direct our civilization at this point. Is this situation just another consequence of the “might makes right” philosophy that taints our society? “Might makes right” is basically another way of saying that the most popular ideas are absolute truth and that whatever those in power do is morally virtuous.
Logically, these ideas go hand in hand. If people believe that authority and popularity are the conditions that define truth and morality, then they are bound to be uncomfortable when someone starts talking about unpopular ideas that lie in opposition of the establishment values.
This discomfort doesn’t change reality though, as Gandhi told us “even in a minority of one, the truth is still the truth”. Something tells me that Gandhi and others like him had plenty of experience in dealing with the same kind of silly rationalizations for violence that a lot of us hear today from State apologists.
Peace and freedom for humankind should be our ultimate ambition, and I challenge you to find a theory on the “meaning of life” that makes more sense than that! It seems anything less is still a work in progress and should be relentlessly improved upon until this quality of existence is achieved. Sadly, we as a species have never been able to collectively understand this, as every generation assumes that their moment in history is the pinnacle of human potential.
Does this sound like the goal of a terrorist to you? Is this a dangerous idea? You might be laughing, but this is a very dangerous idea for some because it threatens their livelihood and source of power.
I’m not going to spend too much time on that small group of goons in this article, as they are covered in detail by many great researchers and highlighted by my work as well. If you haven’t discovered who the illusive “they” are yet, then you should look into the committee of 300, the Bilderberg group, the Council on Foreign Relations, the Trilateral Commission and a process known as Fabian Socialism. These would be some great places to start researching if you’re trying to figure who is behind this mess were all in.
Anyway, let’s get back to the philosophy, shall we? These people that benefit from all of the chaos in the world have different mindsets and beliefs, that they force upon the rest of society. This seems pretty simple and obvious, but it has some very deep and damaging implications. If the things that they are doing are not in everyone’s best interest and they are thrusting their sadistic ideologies on the entire population, then that means that the entire population ends up with a perspective on life that is not in their best interest.
It doesn’t take a stretch of the imagination to think that this very scenario is taking place all over the world today in the many countries that are gripped by propaganda and oppression. Schools in almost every country are state run and operated as indoctrination centers, thanks to the Prussian education model that was exported around the world from pre-nazi Germany where it was created.
Mostly everywhere the only intellectuals that are given any kind of credibility are forced to stay within politically correct guidelines to prevent them from having any real positive effect on the social consciousness. Every major media outlet across the globe is owned and operated by the very same people that drive the planet’s most despotic governments, so there’s no hope of any politically volatile ideas making their way through those channels either. Even our upbringing in the home is largely guided by cultural norms, philosophies, and stereotypes that have all been carefully crafted to benefit their system.
So if all this is true, can we pinpoint a specific philosophy that might have something to do with the “might makes right” mentality that is exhibited by so many people today? Actually we can, and the name of that philosophy is “Pragmatism”. I’m sure that somewhere along the line you were probably told by some brainwashed college professor that this ideology was the epitome of moral integrity, but like so many other things, your college professor appears wrong about this one too.
By definition, pragmatism stresses “practicality”, and I would argue that it’s the kind of practicality that must be employed when making a decision on whether to give your wallet to a mugger or to take your chances fighting his gun. In this situation a true pragmatist would not only give the mugger their wallet, but they would also disregard any kind of rights violations that were just perpetrated against them.
In an interview with tragedy and hope, world renowned scholar John Taylor Gatto described the implications that pragmatism has had on the relationship between oppressor and the oppressed. Gatto Said
“If you now connect pragmatism with the concept of justified sinning, you have an absolute blank check in any situation, to invent truth, invent justice, sacrifice biologically inconsequential people and invent any excuse for doing anything that you want. It seems to me that’s been the driving force in American affairs for a long long time, but interestingly enough it’s been the driving force of an intellectual elite, I believe, through history.”So in other words, people in power use these philosophies to control the minds of the entire human population, in order to justify their crimes and rationalize the abhorrent civilization that they have created.
I personally believe that this philosophy of the collective is one of the fundamental reasons why so many people are uncomfortable with the concepts of peace and liberty. Because these ideas are not approved by those in power, they are unpopular as well. In a pragmatists mind anything that is unpopular and not sanctioned by an authority figure is not even a conceivable notion and is often immediately written off and ignored, or even worse ridiculed.
The sad truth is, some of these people are going to see the light eventually and some of them aren’t. However, we can’t sit around and wait for their help, we need to continue to build a better world while the pragmatists run from reality and worship authority. Don’t worry though, eventually our alternative media, organic markets and noncoercive methods of handling social situations will be more appealing to these fair weathered people, at which point they will do the “practical” thing and become an extremist, just like us.
December 3, 3011
Many in America still believe that the Constitution is the supreme law of the land and that politicians, both Republican and Democrat alike, still hold that view and ensure that any and all legislation passed does not violate it. However, in today’s America, the Constitution is effectively a null and void document, nothing more than a symbol politicians pay lip service to.
The destruction of the Constitution began soon after 9/11 when the Patriot Act was pushed through Congress. In the heat of the moment it seemed as if the legislation was meant to protect us from terrorism; however, it was later revealed that certain provisions blatantly violated the First, Fourth, and Sixth Amendments. Interestingly enough, however, this didn’t stop the Senate from extending the Patriot Act earlier this year. In doing this, the government revealed just how much they respect the Constitution.
The next unconstitutional act to take place was under President Obama. Despite his “hope and change” rhetoric during the campaign, the only thing Obama changed was to further erode the Constitution and the power of checks and balances in government.
Obama argued that the UN mandate gave him the right to bombard Libya; however, the mandate has nothing to do with the fact that such an action was unconstitutional -- as the power to declare war is held solely by Congress -- not to mention the fact that it violated the War Powers Act.
In carrying out this action, Obama did even more to expand the imperial presidency and showed his blatant hypocrisy, as in 2007, when he clearly stated that:
“The President does not have power under the Constitution to unilaterally authorize a military attack in a situation that does not involve stopping an actual or imminent threat to the nation.”However, in later months he would take this disregard of the Constitution to the extreme.
Just two months ago, Obama authorized the assassination of American-born cleric Anwar al-Awlaki. While al-Awlaki was a member of Al Qaeda, he was still a US citizen at the time of his death and thus he still had rights as a citizen, specifically the right due process. This never occurred with al-Awlaki.
Due to al-Awlaki’s assassination, it sets a legal precedent which allows the current and future Presidents to assassinate U.S. citizens and withhold damning evidence -- if there even is any -- from the public under the guise of “national security.”
Today, we see -- due to the brutal crackdown of the Occupy Wall Street movement in Oakland, New York, and most recently Los Angeles -- that Americans are being denied their First and Third amendment rights. Mayors are sending the message that if one decides to pose a serious challenge to the status quo, they will be violently crushed.
The Constitution is dead, and the beliefs and ideals which America was founded upon have also passed away. The most terrifying occurrence, however, is that Americans are seeing their freedoms eroded and are still in denial that a police state is slowly, but surely on its way.
UPDATE: On December 31, 2011 Obama signed the military detention bill (NDAA) into law.
It was Obama who required the bill have the language of U.S. Citizens being held without rights in the bill! The only reason he would veto it, is because it does not give him the absolute power as he wants! [Source]
The Associated Press
December 1, 2011
Ignoring a presidential veto threat, the Democratic-controlled Senate on Thursday overwhelmingly approved a massive, $662 billion defense bill that would require the military to hold suspected terrorists linked to al-Qaida or its affiliates, even those captured on U.S. soil, and detain some indefinitely.
The vote was 93-7 for the bill authorizing money for military personnel, weapons systems, national security programs in the Energy Department, and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan in the fiscal year that began Oct. 1. Reflecting a period of austerity and a winding down of decade-old conflicts, the bill is $27 billion less than what President Barack Obama requested and $43 billion less than what Congress gave the Pentagon this year.
Shortly before final passage, the Senate unanimously backed crippling sanctions on Iran as fears about Tehran developing a nuclear weapon outweighed concerns about driving up oil prices that would hit economically strapped Americans at the gas pump. The vote was 100-0.
"Iran's actions are unacceptable and pose a danger to the United States and the entire world," Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said. "Iran supports terrorist groups, arms the killers of American soldiers, lies about its nuclear program, violates its citizens' basic rights and threatens Israel's security."
The Senate's version of the defense bill still must be reconciled with the House-passed measure in the final weeks of the congressional session.
In an escalating fight with the White House, the bill would ramp up the role of the military in handling terror suspects. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and FBI Director Robert Mueller both oppose the provisions as does the White House, which said it cannot accept any legislation that "challenges or constrains the president's authorities to collect intelligence, incapacitate dangerous terrorists and protect the nation."
Late Thursday, a White House official said the veto threat still stands.
The bill would require military custody of a suspect deemed to be a member of al-Qaida or its affiliates and involved in plotting or committing attacks on the United States. American citizens would be exempt. The bill does allow the executive branch to waive the authority based on national security and hold a suspect in civilian custody.
The legislation also would deny suspected terrorists, even U.S. citizens seized within the nation's borders, the right to trial and subject them to indefinite detention. Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., had sought an exception to the provision for U.S. citizens, but her effort failed, 55-45.
Lengthy negotiations produced a face-saving move that the Senate backed 99-1, a measure that said nothing in the bill changes current law relating to the detention of U.S. citizens and legal aliens. Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin, D-Mich., repeatedly pointed out that the June 2004 Supreme Court decision in Hamdi v. Rumsfeld said U.S. citizens can be detained indefinitely.
The series of detention provisions challenges citizens' rights under the Constitution, tests the boundaries of executive and legislative branch authority and sets up a showdown with the Democratic commander in chief. Civil rights groups fiercely oppose the bill.
"Since the bill puts military detention authority on steroids and makes it permanent, American citizens and others are at greater risk of being locked away by the military without charge or trial if this bill becomes law," said Christopher Anders, senior legislative counsel for the American Civil Liberties Union.
The bill reflects the politically charged dispute over whether to treat suspected terrorists as prisoners of war or criminals. The administration insists that the military, law enforcement and intelligence agents need flexibility in prosecuting the war on terror after they've succeeded in killing Osama bin Laden and Anwar al-Awlaki. Republicans counter that their efforts are necessary to respond to an evolving, post-Sept. 11 threat, and that Obama has failed to produce a consistent policy on handling terror suspects.
The Senate rejected an effort by Feinstein to limit a military custody requirement for suspects to those captured outside the United States. The vote was 55-45.
Feinstein said her goal was to ensure "the military won't be roaming our streets looking for suspected terrorists."
The issue divided Democrats, with nine senators, many facing re-election next year, breaking with their leadership and administration to vote against the amendment. Republicans held firm, with only Sens. Rand Paul of Kentucky, Mark Kirk of Illinois and Mike Lee of Utah backing Feinstein's effort.
"We need the authority to hold those individuals in military custody so we aren't reading them Miranda rights," Sen. Kelly Ayotte, R-N.H., said in defense of the legislation.
Last week, the administration announced a new set of penalties against Iran, including identifying for the first time Iran's entire banking sector as a "primary money laundering concern." This requires increased monitoring by U.S. banks to ensure that they and their foreign affiliates avoid dealing with Iranian financial institutions.
But lawmakers pressed ahead with even tougher penalties despite reservations by the administration.
Sens. Bob Menendez, D-N.J., and Kirk had widespread bipartisan support for their amendment that would target foreign financial institutions that do business with the Central Bank of Iran, barring them from opening or maintaining correspondent operations in the United States. It would apply to foreign central banks only for transactions that involve the sale or purchase of petroleum or petroleum products.
The sanctions on petroleum would only apply if the president determines there is a sufficient alternative supply and if the country with jurisdiction over the financial institution has not significantly reduced its purchases of Iranian oil.
Testifying before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, David Cohen, a senior Treasury Department official, and Wendy Sherman, an undersecretary of state, warned that the amendment could force up oil prices — a financial boon for Iran.
"There is absolutely a risk that in fact the price of oil would go up, which would mean that Iran would in fact have more money to fuel its nuclear ambitions, not less," Sherman said. "And our real objective here is to cut off the economic means that Iran has for its nuclear program."
Cohen said the amendment would tell foreign banks and companies "that if they continue to process oil transactions with the Central Bank of Iran their access to the United States can be terminated."
"It is a very, very powerful threat," Cohen warned. "It is a threat for the commercial banks to end their ability to transact in the dollar and their ability really to function as major international financial institutions," and one that could push allies away from contributing to a coordinated effort against Iran.Roll call of the House version of this "Detention Bill":
H.R. 1540: National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012
Schools May Be Used to Round Up Americans for Registration and Tagging with RFID Wristbands During National Emergencies and Could Be Used as Detention CentersPublic schools are essentially designed as lockdown facilities with cafeterias, gyms, showers, etc. They are similar in structure and layout to detentions centers, except for outside fencing and guards...but this could be easily added if the government plans to convert public schools into detention centers under martial law.
Foreign Troops in America
By Nathan Leal
In this dream, I was in my home town - Loveland, Colorado.
A terrorist event had just occured somewhere else in the U.S.
Because of the attack, all of America was under Martial Law.
There was a command given to all citizens that everyone had to report to their neighborhood public school.
The purpose of going to the school was some sort of mandatory registration (part of their war on terror).
When I arrived at the registration area with my wife, there was a long line with hundreds of people in line.
Along the length of the line were soldiers maintaining order. They were shoving people and giving commands.
I joined the line waiting to get into the building.
As the line slowly moved, I eventually got close enough to several of the soldiers.
They began to ask me questions, but I could not understand them because one of them was speaking Russian and the other one was speaking German.
Conclusion: Martial Law is coming to America in our future with foreign troops.
Date when this will occur unknown.
November 4, 2000
We have written about an Illuminist plan to so eliminate national sovereignty that today's nations have been replaced by military patrol areas. In 1952, in London, the Illuminati sponsored a meeting to re-draw the world into military regions after the One-World Government had been established. In the early 1920's, Russian Communist leaders learned a very valuable lesson: they learned that ethnic troops could not be depended upon to be brutal to their own people . Therefore, Russian Communists devised a plan whereby Muslim Russian troops would be stationed in non-Muslim areas, and vice versa. Therefore, troops would have no difficulty oppressing, jailing, and murdering people not their own. As you will shortly see, this plan applies these lessons worldwide.
We have much to fear, as you will see in just a few moments.
In 1952, the World Association of Parliamentarians for World Government decided which areas of the world would be occupied and patrolled by which troops. These worldwide forces would be commanded by a World Director, who would have an organization of 8 zone directors and 51 regional directors. No regional director would ever be responsible for his own country, and no military troops would ever be stationed within his own country. [This information taken from the National Economic Council of New York City, 1962]
As we reported in NEWS1270, American troops were assigned to six (6) areas of the world, including Yugoslavia, Greece, Albania, Romania, and Bulgaria -- the Balkans Region [NOTE: Serbia, Bosnia- Herzegovina, Croatia, and Macedonia were originally part of Yugoslavia.] This territory was assigned the number 55. Now, you know that the "little" war in Bosnia, Serbia, and Herzegovina was a ruse to get Americans on the ground in that part of the world to which they had been assigned in 1952.
But what about America? Has this wonderful country -- the land of Liberty -- been carved up into "military patrol" sections? You bet it has, and every President since Eisenhower has known of this plan and has done his part in moving the country to this goal. America was to be divided into five (5) areas, with Los Angeles down to the the Panama Canal being part of another military patrol area, a sixth area.TROOPS TO BE STATIONED IN UNITED STATES, CANADA, AND MEXICO
Let us now examine the troops that are to be stationed in North America according to this 1952 plan. View map.
1. Northeast -- Colombian and Venezuelan troops
2. Southern America all the way to California -- Russian troops. The line begins at Virginia and goes straight West to the border of California.
3. Midwest -- Belgian troops
4. Northwest, including California -- Irish troops
5. Canada -- Mongolian [Chinese] and Russian troops
6. Mexico -- Mongolian [Chinese] troops. I find it highly interesting that the Mexico portion over which the Chinese are to exercise control includes San Diego, California! In fact, this area might extend all the way to Los Angeles.
Foreign troops would be in total control of the entire North American continent. No sizeable American troops would be allowed in this country. Then, what needs to happen to the 1,146,959 American troops now stationed in this country? They will either have to be disbanded or deployed overseas. We believe this will occur rapidly as American troops respond to the combined crises in the Middle East, Korea, and China. Once American troops are emptied out of this country by these crises, and our cities explode in riot -- as is planned -- then foreign troops would be "invited" in.
Now, you know the significance of our Border Guards seeing "Asian" and other "non-Hispanics" in the area with the Mexican soldiers, firing on our guards. Why they opened fire is anyone's guess; the most likely scenario is that a drug deal or some other highly illegal activity was taking place in that vicinity and the Mexican soldiers did not want our guards to see it.
When the United States gave up control over the Panama Canal, the Chinese moved right in to control it. Thus, we know the Chinese are in this general area given them to patrol the territory assigned them in this 1952 Illuminist Plan. But, now we know the Chinese are evidently in the Mexico area, right up on our border!
Truly, the Illuminist Plan is on track, and on time.
Both Republican and Democrat parties are equally committed to the New World Order, so there is no one to turn to in this crisis. My sense of the whole matter is that the world does not have long until Antichrist is on the world scene. His appearance is the core goal of the Illuminati Plan, and all key leaders of the world are working in tandem to bring his appearance about -- America, Europe, Russia, China, Israel.
Wal-Mart And The Red Chinese Secret Police
Vigilant Guard Observing Chinese Military and Helicopter Sorties on the Mexico - U.S.
The PfP SOFA is a multilateral agreement between NATO member states and countries participating in the Partnership for Peace (PfP). It deals with the status of foreign forces while present on the territory of another state.
The agreement was originally drawn up in in Brussels on 19 June 1995 to facilitate cooperation and exercises under the recently launched PfP programme.
Basically, the PfP SOFA applies — with the necessary changes having been made — most of the provisions of an agreement between NATO member states, which was done in London on 19 June 1951. (Some provisions of this so-called NATO SOFA cannot be applied to Partner countries for technical reasons.)
It is important to note that these SOFAs fully respect the principle of territorial sovereignty, which requires a receiving state to give its consent to the entry of foreign forces. Neither the PfP SOFA nor the NATO SOFA addresses the issue of the presence of the force itself — that would be defined in separate arrangements. Consequently, it is only after states have agreed to send or receive forces that the SOFAs concerned are applicable.
What does this mean in practice?
By acceding to the PfP SOFA, the parties to the agreement identify exactly what the status of their forces will be and what privileges, facilities and immunities will apply to them, when they are present on the territory of another state, which is party to the PfP SOFA. All states that are party to the agreement grant the same legal status to forces of the other parties when these are present on their territory.
Therefore, once there is a common agreement, for example, regarding a certain operation, training or exercise, the same set of provisions will apply on a reciprocal basis. A common status and an important degree of equal treatment will be reached, which will contribute to the equality between Partners.
WikiLeaks Document Release - Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA): What Is It, and How
Might One Be Utilized In Iraq? (February 2, 2009)
May 31, 2011
The Sunday before Memorial Day is not one of my favorites. The "patriotic" things that go on in churches in celebration or acknowledgment of Memorial Day are downright sickening.
Churches encourage their veterans to wear their military uniforms. Special recognition is given to those who "served." Prayers are offered on behalf of the troops, not that they would cease fighting foreign wars, but for God to keep them out of harm’s way and protect them. Mention is made of the troops defending our freedoms.
Churches decorate their grounds and the inside of their buildings with U.S. flags. Sometimes it is a few large flags hanging from the ceiling or adorning the walls. Sometimes it is many small flags stuck in the ground near the church entrance. Sometimes it is both. Some congregations are asked to recite the pledge of allegiance.
Churches sing hymns of worship to the state instead of hymns of worship about the person of Christ and his work. Songs like "My Country, ‘Tis of Thee," "America the Beautiful," "We Salute You, Land of Liberty," and "This Is My Country." Some churches go even farther and sing "God Bless the U.S.A." or "God Bless America." Too many churches sing the blasphemous "Battle Hymn of the Republic."
I know these practices are widespread because of the scores of people that have e-mailed me in disgust about what occurred in their churches on the Sunday before Memorial Day.
In most cases it is not even necessary to visit a church on the Sunday preceding Memorial Day to know what goes on inside. Just look at the sign outside of the church. Instead of a verse of Scripture or an announcement of an upcoming event, you are more likely to see some patriotic slogan, often with a Christian theme.
I have personally seen two signs this year that I find particularly offensive, not only to my Christian faith, but to reality:
Pray for the Troops,
God be with them.
The American soldier and Jesus Christ,
one gives his life for your freedom,
the other for your soul.
Yes, we should pray for the troops. The Bible tells us in 1 Timothy 2:1 that "supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men." But what should we pray? That God would bless the troops while they injure, maim, kill, and destroy property where they have no business being in the first place? That God would be with them while they wage unjust and immoral foreign wars?
Since when does wearing a military uniform excuse killing someone you don’t know in his own territory that was no threat to any American until the U.S. military invaded and occupied his country? How about instead praying that the troops come home where they belong or that Christian families stop supplying cannon fodder to the military?
That Christ gave his life for our souls is indisputable, but do American soldiers give their lives for our freedoms? You know, the freedoms we have steadily lost since the troops starting defending our freedoms after 9/11? Has there been in American history any foreign war, military action, CIA covert action, or intervention of any kind in any country that was for the purpose of defending our freedoms mentioned in the Bill of Rights? Of course not. Not one Iraqi or Afghan killed by U.S. forces was ever a threat to our freedoms.
The troops don’t defend our freedoms, and neither do they fight "over there" so we don’t have to fight "over here." And I can’t think of anything more blasphemous than mentioning Jesus Christ, the Lord, the Son of God, the Prince of Peace in the same breath as a U.S. soldier who unjustly bombs, maims, kills, and then dies in vain and for a lie.
It is time for Christians to slay the golden calf of the military. Christians should stop joining the military. They should stop encouraging their young men to enlist. They should stop being military chaplains and medics. American churches must be demilitarized.
It is a terrible blight on evangelical Christianity that our churches have sent more soldiers to the Middle East than missionaries. If Christians are so concerned about the threat of Islamofascism, then what better way to confront it than with the Gospel of Christ?
"But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you." - Matthew 5:44
Laurence M. Vance writes from central Florida. He is the author of Christianity and War and Other Essays Against the Warfare State, The Revolution that Wasn't, and Rethinking the Good War. His latest book is The Quatercentenary of the King James Bible. Visit his website.
December 21, 2009
Back on February 13, 2009, I wrote a “Letter to a Christian Young Man Regarding Joining the Military” (posted below). At the end of the letter I included this appeal:
If any readers are veterans, consider themselves to be Christians, agree with the sentiments expressed in this letter, and would be willing to let me append their name, branch, and rank to any future use of this letter, please contact me at email@example.com. The fact that you “served” and I didn’t might be what is needed to help persuade some young man (or woman) to not join the military.The following letter was sent to a Christian young man I know who was considering joining the military. He hasn’t joined as of yet, and I hope and pray that he doesn’t. I am posting this letter publicly in the hope that it might persuade some Christian young men I don’t know from joining the military.
I have now posted this letter on my website with the names of about 40 Christian veterans who contacted me. If you are a Christian veteran and wish to have your name added, please contact me with your name, branch, and rank and I will add your information right away.
I have been told that you are thinking about joining the military. I hope I am misinformed. I understand that you are having trouble finding a job, but think that, as a Christian young man, you are making a big mistake if you join today’s military.
First of all, you were raised in a Christian home and went to Christian schools your whole life. You will be needlessly exposed to much wickedness in the military. You will unnecessarily face temptations that you have never been exposed to. Why put yourself in this position? It is a fact that there is a network of brothels around the world to service U.S. troops stationed overseas. I know that you are a clean young man and have a girlfriend, but don’t deceive yourself into thinking that you can remain clean in the military. Because I write on war and military issues, I have scores of veterans, Christian and otherwise, who have written me that will back up everything I am saying.
Second, it is one thing to join the military out of a sense of patriotism, but how does joining the military for financial reasons make you any different than a mercenary? I know that sounds harsh, but would you consider joining the military if you had a good job right now?
Third, the senseless wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have no end in sight. There is no guarantee that you will not be sent to Iraq, Afghanistan, or some other God-forsaken place where you could be in danger of losing life or limb. And for what?
Fourth, you can’t trust military recruiters. Like a car salesman, they are trying to make their monthly quota. They have been caught on tape lying to young men, even telling them that no troops were being sent to Iraq anymore.
Fifth, I know that you have a very low opinion of the new president, Barack Obama. I share your opinion completely. As a member of the military, Obama would be your commander in chief. You could be sent anywhere to fight for Obama. Are you willing to fight and possibly die because Obama thinks it necessary to send American troops into some other war?
Sixth, in the military, you will be expected to blindly follow the orders of your officers. Independent thought is not tolerated. Please consider the words of U.S. Marine Corps Major General Smedley Butler (1881–1940), a two-time Congressional Medal of Honor winner:
"Like all the members of the military profession, I never had a thought of my own until I left the service. My mental faculties remained in suspended animation while I obeyed the orders of higher-ups. This is typical with everyone in the military service."Major General Butler became disillusioned with military service and wrote a famous book called War Is a Racket in which he said:
""War is a racket. It always has been. It is possibly the oldest, easily the most profitable, surely the most vicious. It is the only one international in scope. It is the only one in which the profits are reckoned in dollars and the losses in lives."Seventh, the purpose of the U.S. military is to defend America. But not only is the military not being used in defense of the country, it is being used to guard the borders, patrol the coasts, and defend the shores of other countries. The purpose of the military has been perverted by the interventionist foreign policy of the United States. There are American troops stationed in 147 countries and 10 territories. I know this for a fact because I have researched this in official Department of Defense documents and written about it on many occasions. The current use of the military is contrary to the American Founding Fathers’ policy of nonintervention in the affairs of other countries.
Eighth, joining the military may have an adverse effect on your future family. I know that you have a girlfriend that you are very serious about. You should know that the breakup of marriages and relationships because of soldiers being deployed to Iraq and elsewhere is epidemic. Multiple duty tours and increased deployment terms are the death knell for stable families. What makes you think that the military will never send you away from your family for an extended period of time? You know that the possibility exists, so why gamble with your family? And then, as if being away from your family wasn’t bad enough on you and them, some soldiers come home with such physical and/or mental problems that they are unable to return to civilian life. Debt, doctors, and divorce lawyers soon consume their finances.
Ninth, joining the military means that you may be put into a position where you will have to kill or be killed. What guarantee do you have that you will be in a non-combat role? Can you in good conscience pull the trigger against any "enemy" that the U.S. government sends you thousands of miles away to kill?
And finally, you would have problems even if you went into the military as a chaplain. Taxpayer-supported chaplains have to serve two masters: God and the state. Compromise is inevitable. He that pays the piper calls the tune. To become a chaplain in the U.S. military, one must obtain an ecclesiastical endorsement from an organization approved by the Pentagon as an Endorsing Ecclesiastical Organization.
According to the chaplain requirements, one of the things that the endorsement should certify is that a military chaplain should be "sensitive to religious pluralism and able to provide for the free exercise of religion by all military personnel, their family members and civilians who work for the Army."I know that you are a conservative Christian and are averse to compromising your religious convictions. You will, however, be expected to do just that. As a chaplain, you would be expected to ask God to bless the actions of U.S. troops even if they were fighting in an unjust war. Can you in good conscience do this?
Please remember that if you join the military, there is no getting out until your enlistment period is up. I hope and pray that you don’t make the mistake of joining.
In Christ Jesus our Savior,
U.S. Troops Are Doing Everything But Defending Our Freedoms
Laurence M. Vance
September 6, 2011
We have heard it repeated loudly and continuously since 9/11 – the troops are defending our freedoms. This claim is made so often and by so many different segments of society that it has become another meaningless national dictum – like “God Bless America” or “In God We Trust.”
This cliché is actually quite insidious. It is used as a mantra to justify or excuse anything the U.S. military does.
- U.S. troops are engaged in unconstitutional, undeclared wars – but the troops are defending our freedoms.
- U.S. drone strikes killed civilians in Pakistan – but the troops are defending our freedoms.
- U.S. bombs landed on a wedding party in Afghanistan – but the troops are defending our freedoms.
- U.S. soldiers murdered Afghan civilians and kept some of their body parts – but the troops are defending our freedoms.
- U.S. helicopter pilots gunned down Iraqi civilians – but the troops are defending our freedoms.
- U.S. soldiers killed civilians for sport – but the troops are defending our freedoms.
- U.S. troops carelessly killed civilians and then covered it up – but the troops are defending our freedoms.
But as I have pointed out many times in my articles on the military, and others like Jacob Hornberger of the Future of Freedom Foundation have been arguing for years (see here and here), the troops are doing everything but defending our freedoms. In fact, the more the troops defend our freedoms by bombing, invading, and occupying other countries, the more enemies they make of the United States and the more our freedoms get taken away in the name of “fighting terrorism” or “national security.”
Not in any particular order, and in varying degrees of significance, here are some freedoms I wish the military were defending:
The freedom to fly without being sexually violated.
The freedom to purchase a gun without a waiting period.
The freedom to grow, sell, and smoke marijuana.
The freedom to sell goods and services for whatever amount a buyer is willing to pay.
The freedom to make more than six withdrawals from one’s savings account each month.
The freedom to drink alcohol as a legal, voting adult under twenty-one years of age.
The freedom to purchase Sudafed over the counter.
The freedom to gamble without government approval.
The freedom to deposit more than $10,000 in a bank account without government scrutiny.
The freedom to not be stopped at a checkpoint and have one’s car searched without a warrant.
The freedom to sell any good or offer any service on Craigslist.
The freedom to fill in a “wetland” on one’s own property.
The freedom to cut someone’s hair for money without a license.
The freedom to home-brew over 100 gallons of beer per year.
The freedom to advertise tobacco products on television.
The freedom to smoke Cuban cigars.
The freedom to not wear a seatbelt.
The freedom to be secure in our persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures.
The freedom to keep the fruits of one’s labor.
The freedom of an employer and an employee to negotiate for any wage.
The freedom to discriminate against anyone for any reason.
The freedom to videotape the police in public.
The freedom of businesses to hire and fire whomever they choose.
The freedom to not be brutalized by the police.
The freedom to not be arrested for victimless crimes.
The freedom to sell raw milk.
The freedom to not have one’s child subject to unnecessary vaccinations.
The freedom to not have one’s child unjustly taken by Child Protective Services.
The freedom to not be subject to the Patriot Act.
The freedom for kids to set up neighborhood lemonade stands.
The freedom to not have every facet of business and society regulated.
The freedom to stay in one’s home during a hurricane.
The freedom to not have our e-mail and phone conversations monitored.
The freedom to travel to and trade with any country.
The freedom to be left alone.
Certainly there are hundreds of things that could be added. We no longer live in a free country. We are increasingly living in a police state, a warfare state, and a national security state. Our freedom is not absolute. The only reason the United States is still considered “the land of the free and the home of the brave” is because we are relatively free, with the degree of freedom varying depending on which country America is compared to.
Would I rather live somewhere else? No, I wouldn’t, but that is a ridiculous question. First of all, if the typical German, Italian, Swede, Korean, Australian, or Spaniard were asked if he would rather live somewhere else you would probably get the same answer. And second, although a prisoner would rather live in a clean prison than a dirty prison and a safe prison rather than a violent prison, he would prefer to not be a prisoner in the first place.
I conclude with three brief thoughts:
- One, I want the military to defend our freedoms. But fighting foreign wars only reduces our freedoms. After all, it is still true that war is the health of the state.
- Two, if the military is going to defend our freedoms, then we need freedoms to defend. Our freedoms must be restored before the military can defend them.
- And three, the greatest threat to our freedoms is the U.S. government, not the governments of China, Syria, Libya, Yemen, Iraq, Afghanistan, Russia, Cuba, Venezuela, or Iran.