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November 15, 2012

Constitutional Confederation — The Right Road Forward

Big Problems Require Big Solutions

“[T]he crisis is arrived when we must assert our rights, or submit to every imposition, that can be heaped upon us, till custom and use shall make us as tame and abject slaves.” –George Washington (1774)

(For Constitutional context, read Alexander’s comprehensive essay on American Liberty as irrevocably endowment by our Creator, the primacy of Rule of Law over the rule of men. This column has been updated as “The Virginia Model for a Constitutional Confederation of States.” For additional resources, see our Historic Documents page.)

I’ve heard that fruit doesn’t fall far from its tree, and have often found that to be true. A young Patriot, who also happens to be my high-school daughter, demonstrated this principle just yesterday.

In a post-election summary to our fellow Patriots last week, I included images of election maps that exposed some facts Obama and his Leftist cadres don’t want you to contemplate.

Chief among those facts are that the assault on Liberty we witnessed in the presidential election was led, as in 2008, primarily by urban dwellers, most of whom reside on “government welfare plantations,” and subsist on the spoils of what Obama calls “redistributive justice.” That collectivist constituency now accounts for almost 50 (FIFTY) percent of Obama’s voter base. Socialist Democrats have mastered the practice of co-opting (read: “buying”) their allegiance and getting them to the polls. The good news is that about nine million fewer Obama voters showed up in 2012.

The county-by-county election maps clearly revealed the geographical delineation between the Left-leaning urban centers and the Right-leaning rest of the nation. Naturally, I observed that this delineation formed reasonable lines for secession, and I recalled these words from fellow Tennessean Nathan Bedford Forrest on the Second War for Independence (as it was known in the South): “I loved the old government. I loved the old Constitution. I do not hate it; I am opposing now only the radical revolutionists who are trying to destroy it.”

So, you ask, what does this have to do with fruit trees and my daughter? Well she walked into my home study (affectionately called “The History Museum” around our house), and she was sporting one of those expressions that conveyed she was on a mission. She asked, “Can I sign a petition for our state to secede?”

Apparently, as you may have heard, some despondent souls across the nation, still licking their wounds after Obama’s re-election, are preparing to surrender the future of the Republic. They have launched official secession petitions from all 50 states on the most illogical of places to undertake such folly – Obama’s White House “We the People” page for online petitions, which promises a response from the president to every petition that gathers more than 25,000 signatures.

Those petitions are closing in on a million signatures.

My daughter got wind of this, and she’s now ready to grab her M-4 and a case of 5.56 and start over, with her brothers at her side! I love her spirit. She’s one of those “quiet girls,” but if you’re on the wrong side of Liberty, you’d best get out of her field of fire.

After telling her that she most certainly could sign a petition for secession (just not one managed by Obama’s lemmings), we had a discussion about the frustrations that have led some of our countrymen to give up on ever restoring Rule of Law.

I explained that nine of the secession petitions on the White House website have already exceeded the 25,000 signature threshold, and I anticipate Obama’s response will be some version of what he has already said about grassroots conservatives – something about those Tea Party people being an “angry mob” who are “waving their little tea bags around” while “they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.”

Obama and his sycophantic Leftmedia will have a good laugh with these understandable but ill-conceived petitions – and that’s unfortunate, because the petitions provide an opening for Obama to further marginalize legitimate grievances about the Left’s collective disregard for our Constitution.

Now, please don’t flood our website’s “Comments” page with a defense of these petitions. I happen to agree with old N.B. Forrest in his assessment of the principal cause of the first attempt at secession, and I take exception to the gubmint schools’ uncritical and unflinching idolization of Abe Lincoln, whose reckless disregard of our Constitution exceeds that of any president in our history, with the possible exception of Barack Obama. (I guess that assessment may result in a flood of objections, too.)

The fact is, I don’t support secession, and having been around a couple of revolutions in Africa and Eastern Europe, I would much prefer constitutional restoration over insurrectionif the former is achievable.

So why, in my assessment of the electoral maps, mention secession at all?

Because an alternative worth contemplating seriously would be to pursue a Constitutional Confederation – an alliance of those states that are not under the mob rule of urban Leftists, whose delegations could assemble to affirm the authority of our Constitution, in effect, re-ratify it and the Rule of Law it enshrines.

Our Constitution established a Republic intended to reflect the consent of the governed, a nation of laws, not men. Article IV, Section 4 state unambiguously, “The United States shall guarantee to every state in this union a republican form of government…” A Confederation of States should demand no less than the Federalist standard prescribed by our Constitution and affirmed in its Tenth Amendment.

In the 2010 midterm elections, Republicans gained 63 House seats, six Senate seats and six governorships.

After the 2012 presidential election, Republicans control 30 state governorships and 27 state legislatures, and twice as many states are under total Republican leadership (governor and both houses) as states controlled by Democrats. That is plenty enough muscle to populate a Constitutional Confederation (as opposed to a Constitutional Convention) for the purpose of re-adopting our authentic Constitution at originally ratified, with amendments attached as prescribed. This act would, thus reject the so-called “living constitution” now obscured beyond recognition by judicial diktats from the “despotic branch” of which Thomas Jefferson so presciently warned. (Update: In the “2014 Midterm Republican Wave,” Republicans completely decimated Democrats in not only House and Senate races but notably in gubernatorial and statehouse elections across the nation. This was a deep win for Republicans and particularly conservatives, and like 2010, was driven by “grassroots patriots.)

Those states re-ratifying as members of the Constitutional Confederation would determine an orderly plan to withdraw from the plethora of extra-constitutional regulations and taxes which are in clear violation of Tenth Amendment Federalism as prescribed when each state first ratified our Constitution. This serious movement to restore the authority of our Constitution is a genuine act in support of "We the People” rather than an act of insurrection. It most assuredly could generate national momentum and would generate a LOT of heartburn for Obama and his socialist cadres, as constitutional authority is anathema to their objective of state authority.

OK, I haven’t completely taken leave of my senses – but this notion of a Constitutional Confederation is representative of the big ideas that need to be considered in order to resolve big problems. And if you haven’t yet taken leave of your senses, you know our nation is beset with BIG problems.

Here is where we find ourselves after the presidential election.

Our nation is in crisis – and given the post election “economic revisions” this week, that crisis is not abating. The poverty rate was revised upward to 16.1 percent – a record 49 million people living in poverty by American standards (up 3 million more than estimated the week prior to the election). The Latino poverty rate was revised upward to 28 percent. Jobless claims were up 78,000 this week, with Pennsylvania and Ohio hardest hit – just wait for the December jobless claims…

Here is the short list of major domestic problems we face: Massive debt, crippling taxes, mandated tax increases and budget cuts under the Budget Control Act of 2011 – which will likely result in economic reversal (recession), out-of-control welfare and entitlement spending, inflation (just watch), overbearing government regulations and health care mandates, ever-expanding government plantation populations, failed educational institutions, increasing dependence on foreign oil, declining defense capability and the increasing threat of another devastating strike by Islamofascists on U.S. soil.

The short list of international problems: Chinese manipulation of debt markets, the re-emergence of Russian authoritarianism, the meltdown of relations in the Middle East and Africa, and Europe plunging back into economic recession.

Oh, and the biggest domestic problem: The re-election of a “community organizer,” who has never so much as operated a lemonade stand, with the expectation that he will solve all the other problems, even though he and his “useful idiots” spent the last four years making matters much worse.

Barack Hussein Obama has no legislative mandate, but neither do the establishment Republicans. Obama did not win the 2012 election – the GOP lost it. However, I can assure you that Obama will proceed as if he won every vote in America, not the thin 4/10ths of one percent that reseated him. That assurance was evident in Obama’s post-election press conference this week, the first in eight months, when he doubled down on his list of Leftist mandates.

The good news is that Republicans can counter Obama’s platform and restore the integrity of our Constitution, but only if the conservative wing of the Republican Party convinces the rest of the GOP to do what Mitt Romney failed to do – rally grassroots conservatives. That will require leaders in the House and Senate who actually get “the grassroots thing,” which the current leadership does not. (If new legislative leadership does not emerge, see “Constitutional Confederation” reference above.)

To better understand what the Romney campaign did not, the last time a GOP presidential contender genuinely identified with grassroots folks and they with him, was 1984, when Ronald Reagan won 525 electoral votes to his Democrat opponent’s 13. (To see what an election map looks like when a presidential candidate has earned the support of grassroots America, click here.) The Reagan model was, and remains, the right road forward.

The current cover of Newsweek proclaims “GOP: You’re History” (which is ironic for a failed magazine in its final weeks of publication), but if the GOP does not get it right from this day forward, the Republic as we know it will be history.

The fact is, almost every critical national problem we face is, in every respect, the direct result of the gross political violation of the limits our Constitution prescribes on the scope of our federal government. Period.

The current crises are accompanied by great opportunities, both in terms of policy and politics – restocking our national and state legislatures with right-minded leadership in 2014 and 2016.

We’re unlikely to win the support of any government poverty plantation dependents – those welfare captives who make up the Left’s largest constituency (50 percent). We’re not going to change the minds of ideological socialists who make up about 10 percent of Leftist voters. But the right appeal will win over a majority of the remaining 40 percent of Obama’s “middle constituency” and change the political landscape in the next two election cycles. Recall that a mere two-percent swing in the most recent election would have resulted in Obama’s defeat – which makes his victory all the more bitter. The right conservative leadership has the opportunity to win a 10 to 15 percent swing by rallying grassroots America to the cause of Liberty.

It has taken generations for our nation to become mired deep in the mud in which we now find ourselves stuck. It will take more than a few election cycles to pull us out. But there has been a great awakening among Patriots, and our ranks have grown rapidly in recent years. With the right leadership, the march to restore Liberty and constitutional integrity will be unstoppable.

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