2011/05/26

Is TSA "Groping" Bill Junk Legislation?

I testified against HB 1937 before the Committee for reasons discussed here.  It is a poorly conceived effort to solve this and other problems of unconstitutional federal action, given the existing state of judicial support for such unconstitutional action. The present legal reality is that "federal agent" is now a title of nobility, and federal agents may murder, rape, steal, or do anything they want, protected by the judicial doctrine of official immunity. If federal courts were still devoted to the Constitution, a bill like HB 1837 would be okay, but they are not. What is needed is a more subtle, comprehensive approach, and I have proposed one that might work: the establishment by amendment to the Texas Constitution of a Federal Action Review Commission, a grand jury empowered to hear citizen complaints of federal usurpations, and if it found them unconstitutional, that finding would trigger a requirement for all state officials, agents, and contractors to refuse to cooperate in any way with such usurpations, and encourage private citizens to do the same. Since the state is not allowed to represent citizens in court who might do so, it would provide a fund to pay the legal and other expenses of those who thus resisted. This would engage the entire state in concerted non-violent civil disobedience, which is about the only way left to us to get the central government to abandon its unconstitutional practices.

However, now that the U.S. Attorney has foolishly threatened the State if it merely passes the bill, we have no choice but to go ahead and pass it, and I urge the Legislature to do so. My proposal would be a far better solution, but we must not yield to such pressure.

University of Texas law professor Robert Chesney makes the common mistake of treating all enactments, statutes, regulations, or administrative policies as "law". Other than constitutions, only statutes are law and only if they are constitutional. Most federal statutes are unconstitutional. Not just some provisions of a few of them. Most of them. It is long past time to proclaim the emperor has no clothes. We need to stop pretending the central government is clothed by the Constitution when it is not.

The U.S. Congress passes about 20,000 unconstitutional provisions a year that could be challenged in court as separate issues. That is far too many to be addressed one at a time by state legislation like HB 1937. We need a more comprehensive approach that can tackle them all.

As for the Ninth Amendment, there are plenty of people who are defending it, especially law professor Randy Barnett. More can be found here.  We are still a minority, but you can help spread our message.

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2011/05/24

The gravy train is at the end of the line.

Social Security is not and never was any kind of insurance program. Your payments into it are not and never were premium payments for a retirement pension. There is no "social security" account with your name on it. The government has never claimed otherwise, and indeed, has explicitly denied it. The notion to the contrary that too many people seem to have is a delusion they invented and prefer to believe, but which has no basis in either law or reality. Social security, and the other entitlements, are no more than transfers of wealth from one group of people to another, and there is no legal obligation to make such transfers in the future to those who have had their wealth taken from them for that purpose, in the past.

Better make friends with your children and grandchildren, because it won't be long before you will have to depend on them to support you in poor health or old age. If the government sends you money, it will be money that will be nearly worthless. You will need to wheel a shopping cart full of $1 billion-dollar bills to the store (if any remain open) to buy a slice of bread.

The gravy train is at the end of the line. Get off and work, or die. Those are your only choices.

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2011/05/22

No government-issued ID to vote

Kansas SOS Kris Kobach has written this oped for the WSJ. But his reasoning is flawed. Here are my comments:


There is a critical difference between presenting identification to cash a check, and doing so to vote. The first is a transaction between private parties. The second is the exercise of a public duty by a public official, the elector, for whom the only qualification is being a citizen and resident of the voting jurisdiction. There is no constitutional requirement to have or present any kind of government-issued identification document. There is no constitutional authority to require anyone to present what one is not required to have, and no constitutional authority to require anyone to have such identification, or even to have a name.

No one owns his name. A name is what others call us, and is under their control. No one can be required to accept or disclose what others call us.

It is not improper to require confirmation that one is qualified to vote, but the traditional way to do that is by a jurat of a notary public who knows the individual. That jurat does not need to cite a name or other identification. In this digital age, we have the alternative of digital notaries who certify the connection between an individual and his public encryption key. Such circles of trust are the constitutional solution to identification. Government identification puts too much power in the hands of government, a power they can be relied upon to abuse.


None of the government-issued identification documents now available actually prove one is a citizen. They may be evidence of many things, but the closest thing to proof of citizenship is a birth certificate, and that can easily be faked, as we have recently seen with the bogus "certificate of live birth" the White House foolishly put on their website without first removing the image layers that disclose the sequence of alterations to the image, which show clearly it is fraudulent. A passport is also not proof of citizenship. They are issued to non-citizens, and are only as reliable as the information provided to the Passport Office. Garbage in garbage out.

The closest thing we have to reliable identification is a jurat from a notary public who knows the individual personally. Government-issued ID is just a way for government to control people.

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