Conservatives and libertarians who wish to correct the current excesses of government and its relentless push to amass more power have put forth several proposals for consideration. Many refer to the problem as a "Constitutional crisis." But most would be quick to say there is no crisis at all of Constitutional law but of the willingness, or lack thereof, to follow the Constitution.
One proposal is that states begin to secede from the union. Another is to wage war to bring the nation back in line with the rule of law as the Framers of the Constitution envisioned, although that war would be a totally new type of warfare, not based upon violence or doing harm but on outsmarting the collectivists and tyrants who wish to enslave the population.
Yet another proposal was placed on the table by radio talk show host and attorney Mark Levin, who published a new book that skyrocketed to the top of both the New York Times and Amazon bestseller lists. The book is titled The Liberty Amendments in which Levin proposes a series of amendments to the Constitution that would be initiated by the states, culminating in an Article V Convention -- a convention of states to consider amendments to the Constitution.
While Levin commands great respect as an attorney and commentator within the conservative community, his proposals have hit a roadblock among conservative and libertarian Constitutional scholars. Many are now saying that Levin's proposals are based upon a flawed reading of Article V and that a much better approach is what is known as "nullification."
Levin maintains that Article V bypasses Congress entirely and allows the people and the state legislatures to take action as a final recourse against federal power. But as the website Publius-Huldah notes, the wording of Article V places the power to call such a convention squarely with the Congress, not the states.
Further, Publius asserts that the Framers viewed nullification as the ultimate recourse of the people against a powerful centralized government intent on suppressing the rights of the people.
Nullification, simply put, is the power of the states to refuse to implement federal laws, rules, regulations, or orders that violate Constitutional principles. Jefferson, Madison, Hamilton, and Adams all agreed that the states have such power, as Publius makes abundantly clear:
It is already proved in James Madison Rebukes Nullification Deniers, that our Framers endorsed nullification by States of unconstitutional acts of the federal government. Thomas Jefferson and James Madison summed it up as follows:
“…when powers are assumed which have not been delegated, a nullification of the act” is “the natural right, which all admit to be a remedy against insupportable oppression…”
Publius goes further to provide great detail in refuting Levin's claims and laying the foundation for a renewed acceptance of nullification as a legitimate process for holding federal power in check.
The problem, however, as with Levin's proposals, is in getting the states to reclaim their rightful power in the face of the growing federal menace. Nullification is certainly legitimate, if the states will do it. But the fact is most states will not, just as most states cannot be trusted to do the right thing if an Article V Convention, the way Levin understands it, is called.
With the lawlessness that has engulfed America at the federal, state, and local levels, in the courts, the legislatures, and executive offices, it is highly doubtful that the states will do the right thing, not even with nullification. Until that changes, there is little hope for turning the tide against tyranny in this nation without a war.
That war, however, is what I call "the stealth war," meaning that conventional warfare is not utilized. In fact, most citizens will not even know such a war is being fought. All of the common assumptions concerning troops, mayhem, violence, and killing are no longer operative. In fact, one of the key principles of stealth warfare is the great care that is taken to preserve the lives of citizens.
This war, as we have mentioned often in the past, is based upon five simple principles -- defy, resist, evade, smuggle, sabotage. Mike Vanderboegh was the first to advocate for the first four of the five. I added a fifth, sabotage, being of the persuasion that thwarting the oppressors by outsmarting them and obstructing their tactics at every hand is an essential component of this stealth war.
Citizens whose main concern is to maintain liberty must involve themselves in personal defiance and resistance, but in a manner that outsmarts the leviathans of the oppressive federal complex. Evasive tactics must be implemented to avoid being noticed and caught. The smuggling of "forbidden" firearms into areas that have banned them (the banning of which is illegal under the Constitution) is a key component of the stealth war. And "soft" sabotage must be employed to foil the movements and plans of the oppressors, all of which must be done under the cloak of secrecy.
Americans must be reminded, yet again, that Jefferson, who advocated nullification, also advocated war against our own government if it regresses into tyranny and oppression. This was not considered extremist thinking during the period of the Framers. In one accord most of them agreed. They had fought and won against the tyranny of the British monarchy. They would not hesitate to do the same thing against our own government if it began to take on the characteristics of a power-hungry centralized state.
My latest entry is now posted on my blog in the series, Musings After Midnight, titled, "Drastic Action: A Proposal and a Critique."
My popular series "Musings After Midnight" is now indexed at my blog, The Liberty Sphere.
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