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Ravaging the Republic

David Jeffers

[COMMENT:  David Jeffers understands Biblical government.  For more by Jeffers, to go his website above, www.EaglesUp.US  

The 17th Amendment to the Constitution moved America away from being a republic, more toward being a pure democracy, a form of government unanimously rejected by our founding fathers.  We were sold a bill of goods, giving the impression that the national government was more "democratic" than the state governments.  That is a delusion which ends up atomizing the individual, separating him from his local communities which are buffer communities between him and the potentially autocratic power of the central government.  When the local communities are eroded, the power drifts to the central government and loss of protection for the citizen. 

Thomas Jefferson remarked that any government big enough to give you all you want is also strong enough to take away everything you have.  Precisely the point.  The primary way to limit govern is to disperse it. 

The principle of "subsidiarity" asserts that we must assign political authority to the lowest, most local government that is reasonably possible.  That helps create a healthy dispersion of power and authority.  Giving the Senate elections directly to the people rather than to the state governments looked like a good thing, but it was part of the ploy to centralized control into the hands of an autocratic elite by eroding our buffer communities, and thus atomizing the citizens.  And it is working.  Atomized citizens, with no or few local ties and bonds, are easy to control.   

We must remove the 17th Amendment, and rebuild the importance of state and local governments, the most local of which, and the most powerful of which, is the family, headed by fathers who are their spiritual leaders.  There will be no secure spiritual renewal in America or the West until men resume their God-given role as spiritual leaders, and families, not the churches, become the spiritual centers of society.  Families have been all but destroyed, if "family" means those social units which are raising up children to God, children who are dependent upon and obedient to God, not to civil government.  That is the biggest social and political issue before us -- how to restore our spiritual integrity so that we can successfully keep civil government under the control of We, the People. 

Civil government has been a party to the trashing of manhood, mostly through the pseudo-public education system (it is neither public nor education -- it is about mind-control).  Next to the renewal of the family, the most important change in America to setting us free, with again a free-market of ideas, would be to get civil government totally out of education, and to give it back to the families, churches, and other non-government organizations.  See articles on Biblical Government.        E. Fox]

Ravaging the Republic (Part 1)

By davidjeffers | July 17, 2008

“Posterity: you will never know how much it has cost my generation to preserve your freedom. I hope you will make good use of it.”    John Quincy Adams

The brilliance of the United States Constitution is its balance of powers; three branches of government where no one single branch becomes autocratic over the others.  Today’s republican form of government is upside down and if the ship is not righted it will continue to circle the drain until it is deposited into history’s trash heap.  The blood of too many Americans have been spilled defending our freedom to allow that to happen.
A closer look at the three branches of government at the state and national level will show government working quite contrary to what the Founding Fathers envisioned.
If any branch of government would be stronger than the other, it would have to be the legislative branch.  Our legislators are elected by the people and are supposed to represent these people.  Congress has the constitutional powers to pass laws, declare war, impeach and try the President and judges, just to name a few.  This power is tempered by judicial review of laws as pertaining to their constitutionality and by the President’s right to veto.  It was further tempered by having two houses in the legislature.  That advantage has been lost since the ratification of the Seventeenth Amendment (more on that in a bit).
The House of Representatives was designed to be directly influenced by the people and to keep those elected officials on a short leash, hence being elected every two years.  We read in Federalist Paper # 52 the intent of the Framers for the House of Representatives:

As it is essential to liberty that the government in general should have a common interest with the people, so it is particularly essential that the branch of it under consideration should have an immediate dependence on, and an intimate sympathy with, the people. Frequent elections are unquestionably the only policy by which this dependence and sympathy can be effectually secured.

The House of Representatives is elected every two years and the apportionment of seats determined by population.  On the other hand, the Senate was to represent each state equally, regardless of size, and the original intent was the state selected its two senators.  The state would have real power at the federal level by its two representatives in the Senate.  This allowed the smaller states the same power as the larger states.  We read in Federalist Paper #52:

In this spirit it may be remarked, that the equal vote allowed to each State is at once a constitutional recognition of the portion of sovereignty remaining in the individual States, and an instrument for preserving that residuary sovereignty. So far the equality ought to be no less acceptable to the large than to the small States; since they are not less solicitous to guard, by every possible expedient, against an improper consolidation of the States into one simple republic.

Again that advantage was lost to the states because they no longer have control over their senators; they are elected by general election like the House of Representatives.  The state no longer has its senators on a short leash; there is no direct influence by the governor or the state legislature.  Influence is solely upon the will of the people.  We need to rescind the Seventeenth Amendment and bring the balance of power back to its original intent.
When senators are elected by the people every six years, they are under less restraint than if they were beholden to the states.  This is why you see career senators who can build up huge campaign war chests and are practically immovable from office. Only a highly informed and involved electorate can keep a senator in line.
We now have a US Congress, and in some cases, state legislatures who have usurped their constitutional powers of passing laws.  One oxymoron that has become part of the American lexicon is “judicial tyranny.”  That is pure nonsense!  Tyranny is defined as “arbitrary or unrestrained exercise of power; despotic abuse of authority.”  It is impossible for the judiciary to be tyrannical because it has no powers to exercise or abuse.  The public has been lied to when it is told that some court has enacted some law through judicial tyranny.

We will take a closer look at the judicial branch next week.

Ravaging the Republic (Part 2)

By davidjeffers | July 24, 2008

Last week I wrote:

 “One oxymoron that has become part of the American lexicon is ‘judicial tyranny.’  That is pure nonsense!  Tyranny is defined as ‘arbitrary or unrestrained exercise of power; despotic abuse of authority.’  It is impossible for the judiciary to be tyrannical because it has no powers to exercise or abuse.  The public has been lied to when it is told that some court has enacted some law through judicial tyranny.”

 The judiciary branch was designed to be the weaker of the three branches and was to cause no harm to the other branches.  Notice what Alexander Hamilton wrote in Federalist Paper #81:

 It may in the last place be observed that the supposed danger of judiciary encroachments on the legislative authority, which has been upon many occasions reiterated, is in reality a phantom. Particular misconstructions and contraventions of the will of the legislature may now and then happen; but they can never be so extensive as to amount to AN INCONVENIENCE, or in any sensible degree TO AFFECT THE ORDER OF THE POLITICAL SYSTEM. This may be inferred with certainty, from the general nature of the judicial power, from the objects to which it relates, from the manner in which it is exercised, from ITS COMPARATIVE WEAKNESS, AND FROM ITS TOTAL INCAPACITY TO SUPPORT ITS USURPATIONS BY FORCE. And the inference is greatly fortified by the consideration of the important constitutional check which THE POWER OF INSTITUTING IMPEACHMENTS IN ONE PART OF THE LEGISLATIVE BODY, and of determining upon them in the other, would give to that body upon the members of the judicial department. THIS IS ALONE A COMPLETE SECURITY. THERE NEVER CAN BE DANGER THAT THE JUDGES, BY A SERIES OF DELIBERATE USURPATIONS ON THE AUTHORITY OF THE LEGISLATURE, WOULD HAZARD THE UNITED RESENTMENT OF THE BODY INTRUSTED WITH IT, WHILE THIS BODY WAS POSSESSED OF THE MEANS OF PUNISHING THEIR PRESUMPTION, BY DEGRADING THEM FROM THEIR STATIONS. While this ought to remove all apprehensions on the subject, it affords, at the same time, a cogent argument for constituting the Senate a court for the trial of impeachments.  (Emphasis mine)

 The judiciary is not to cause AN INCONVENIENCE nor is it TO AFFECT THE ORDER OF THE POLITICAL SYSTEM.  Why is that?  It is because the judiciary has no real power because of ITS COMPARATIVE WEAKNESS, AND FROM ITS TOTAL INCAPACITY TO SUPPORT ITS USURPATIONS BY FORCE.  Let me play that last clause one more time a little louder (you’ll forgive me for shouting):


 Therein lays the whole basis of the argument; why are we going to the courts instead of the executive branch to fight our battles?  If it is because they will not support us, then take it to the people. 

 And if we have runaway judges it is because we have a legislative branch that has removed the fear from the judiciary of the HAZARD THE UNITED RESENTMENT OF THE BODY INTRUSTED WITH IT might actually bring.  In fact, the last time a legislator spoke of the power that the legislature, THIS BODY (that is) POSSESSED OF THE MEANS OF PUNISHING THEIR [the judiciary’s] PRESUMPTION, BY DEGRADING THEM FROM THEIR STATIONS; in other words, bringing rogue and runaway judges up for impeachment…the last man to do so was Tom DeLay and he was excoriated in the press.  He should have been hailed as a hero by the evangelical community and all freedom loving federalist conservatives.

 Hamilton additionally wrote in Federalist Paper #78 the following:

 Whoever attentively considers the different departments of power must perceive, that, in a government in which they are separated from each other, THE JUDICIARY, from the nature of its functions, WILL ALWAYS BE THE LEAST DANGEROUS TO THE POLITICAL RIGHTS OF THE CONSTITUTION; because it will be least in a capacity to annoy or injure them. The Executive not only dispenses the honors, but holds the sword of the community. The legislature not only commands the purse, but prescribes the rules by which the duties and rights of every citizen are to be regulated. The judiciary, on the contrary, has no influence over either the sword or the purse; no direction either of the strength or of the wealth of the society; and can take no active resolution whatever. It may truly be said to have neither FORCE nor WILL, but merely judgment; and MUST ULTIMATELY DEPEND UPON THE AID OF THE EXECUTIVE ARM EVEN FOR THE EFFICACY OF ITS JUDGMENTS.

 In the case of same-sex marriage in both Massachusetts and California, it was not the courts who committed judicial tyranny; it was executive tyranny that illegally brought same-sex marriage certificates to be affected.  Next week we take a closer look at the executive department

Ravaging the Republic (Part 3)

By davidjeffers | August 7, 2008

A feeble Executive implies a feeble execution of the government. A feeble execution is but another phrase for a bad execution; and a government ill executed, whatever it may be in theory, must be, in practice, a bad government. (Alexander Hamilton, Federalist Paper #70)

If Alexander Hamilton and the rest of the Federalists could see our government now they would no doubt shake their heads in disgust.  To call most of our elected government executives feeble is almost a compliment.

While President Bush has done an overall great job on keeping our country free from terrorist attacks since 9/11, his message to keep our country on a war-footing has been not only feeble; it has also been anemic.

“I suppose my critics will call that preaching, but I have got such a bully pulpit!”

Those words from Teddy Roosevelt ring hollow today.  Very few elected government executives use their bully pulpits in the way TR advocated.  I would imagine him thinking of them nothing less than moral cowards, because they are.

We have Governors illegally instituting same-sex marriage by altering state marriage licenses and they claim they were only following judicial mandates.  Mitt Romney has been beyond the pale in his executive tyranny.

Is a Governor or President bound by the Constitution to adhere to a Supreme Court ruling?  Some would say yes since Marbury vs. Madison, however there is precedence for executives ignoring the judiciary.  It is also important to remember that the Marbury ruling merely set the precedence of judicial review through Marbury’s filing a writ of mandamus.  Chief Justice John Marshall acknowledged that although the court had jurisdiction over Marbury’s petition, it did not however have the power to force the executive branch to act on its findings.

In other words, if the executive branch decided to ignore the Court’s rulings, the Court would be powerless to enforce its wishes.  As I said there is historical precedence for the executive branch to ignore judiciary findings.  President Abraham Lincoln refused to enforce the Dred Scott decision and for good reason.  Another case of judicial malfeasance that should have been ignored by the executive branch is Plessy vs. Ferguson, which legalized racial segregation.

The ruling in Plessy vs. Ferguson was so wrought with racist thinking, unfortunately of sign of those times, that very few clear thinking men saw the lunacy of the decision.  One such man was Supreme Court Justice John Marshal Harlan; he wrote:

 But in view of the Constitution, in the eye of the law, there is in this country no superior, dominant, ruling class of citizens. There is no caste here. Our Constitution is color-blind, and neither knows nor tolerates classes among citizens. In respect of civil rights, all citizens are equal before the law.

 How is that only one man out of eight sitting on the highest court could see the constitutional equal protection provided to all men?

 When our courts exercise judicial malfeasance through fiat, it is incumbent upon both the executive and legislative branches to reel the court back in to its actual constitutional powers.  But that would take moral courage; the kind that will only come from a national demand from America’s citizenry.

Ravaging the Republic (Part 4)

By davidjeffers | August 14, 2008

"When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation."

So begins the Declaration of Independence whereas thirteen colonies unanimously decided to throw off the chains of tyranny and chose liberty.  Fifty-six men from varying backgrounds pledged “to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.”  Each man kept their sacred honor, many at the expense of their fortunes, and some with their lives.  These men epitomized moral courage, the type that is lacking in our three branches of government as a whole.

So what are a free people to do when its elected representatives lose their collective moral courage?  Let’s revisit the Preamble to the US Constitution:

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

Did you catch that?  It is “We the People”, the citizens of the United States, who ordained and established our constitution…OUR CONSTITUTION!  And when OUR elected officials do not carry out their sworn constitutional duties, it is the responsibility of the citizenry to either infuse the elected with moral courage, or replace them with others already possessing it.

Why do the elected virtually ignore the electorate?  Because the electorate are no threat to the elected!  The electorate go about their workaday world running little Johnny to soccer practice and little Suzie to ballet lessons, text messaging this and that contact, that most Americans do not have the time nor the desire to pay attention to Washington D.C.  Most Americans think it is a waste of time because the elected do what they want once they get inside the Beltway.  Well that much is true but it is OUR fault, the electorate, not the elected.  The elected only get away with what the electorate allows.

A look at Federalist Paper #1 by Alexander Hamilton explains the important role the electorate would play with respect to constitutional powers:

"It has been frequently remarked that it seems to have been reserved to the people of this country, by their conduct and example, to decide the important question, whether societies of men are really capable or not of establishing good government from reflection and choice, or whether they are forever destined to depend for their political constitutions on accident and force. If there be any truth in the remark, the crisis at which we are arrived may with propriety be regarded as the era in which that decision is to be made; and a wrong election of the part we shall act may, in this view, deserve to be considered as the general misfortune of mankind."

My fellow Americans, we have once again arrived at a crisis.  We are rapidly coming to a decision that will not only determine the outcome of our republic, but also affect mankind in general.  We are the greatest nation in history; I know many America-hating leftists will scoff at this belief, but history proves this to be true.

And yet We the People sit back and have allowed this republic to be turned on its head.  The legislature was designed to be the most powerful of the three branches of government. It has the power to pass laws, to override any vetoed legislation by the executive branch, and to seat and unseat judges.  Look at our US Congress today; it is totally incapable of passing legislation that will secure our nations borders and use our natural resources.  The legislative branch today is the weakest branch of government!

The executive branch was designed to be the sword of the government, to enforce laws and protect the citizenry.  And yet we have a President who refuses to use the bully pulpit to its full advantage, who refuses to call the Congress back into session because “it won’t make a difference if Democratic leaders are unwilling to bring up a bill for an up-down vote.”  It would make a difference if the most powerful man in the world began acting like it, demanding publicly that the Speaker of the House allow an up or down vote on domestic drilling.  Why not call a joint session of Congress and demand this action? 

And then we have what was designed to be the weakest of the three branches of government, the judiciary, who is clearly the most powerful in the minds of the elected.  We have seen this President allow the Supreme Court to dictate to him how he is to conduct the war on terror.  If ever the United States Supreme Court needed to be ignored it is when it believes it can tell the Commander-in-Chief how to conduct war.

But this too is seen at the state level with Governors Mitt Romney of Massachusetts and Arnold Schwarzenegger of California kowtowing to its respective state supreme courts.

If We the People do not hold our elected officials accountable to their constitutional duties then we have no reason to complain about our government.  It is past time for us to rise up and be counted once again, but we must give up at least one 30 minute television show to do some research every day, keeping up with the important issues of our day at the local, state, and federal levels. 

And we can no longer rely on the mainstream media to keep our politicians honest; they have clearly aligned themselves with the Democratic Party.  As an evangelical Christian, I can no longer trust the leaders of the pro-family movement to do what is best for America.  The MSM and the pro-family movement have their best interests at heart.

More on both of them in the conclusion of “Ravaging the Republic.”

Ravaging the Republic (Part 5)

By davidjeffers | August 22, 2008

Over the past month on this column we have seen, in light of the US Constitution, how our branches of government have been turned on their collective heads.  We have a judiciary being accused of tyranny when they have no ability to be tyrannical.  We have a legislature usurping not only its law-making responsibilities, but also its oversight of the judiciary.  And then we have an executive branch who kowtows to the judicial whims, even in the area of national defense. 

All three branches of government operate in these manners because WE THE PEOPLE do not hold them accountable, but then again how do you hold the elected accountable when the large majority of the electorate are constitutionally ignorant?  It would help if we had a mainstream media (MSM) that understood its constitutional responsibility.  Also, if all of us who consider themselves evangelicals and invest millions of dollars annually in pro-family organizations actually knew how derelict of duty they have been, would be greatly disturbed.

Looking at the MSM requires a look back to the constitutional protection and responsibility given to the free press.  The Father of our Constitution James Madison said this about a free press:

The security of the freedom of the press requires that it should be exempt, not only from previous restraint of the executive, as in Great Britain; but from legislative restraint also; and this exemption, not only from the previous inspection of licensers, but from the subsequent penalty of laws.

I am in agreement with Madison that authors should be free from prosecution when they write articles critical of the government without fear of prosecution.  Notwithstanding freedom of the press is the fact that with freedom comes responsibility.  Twentieth century columnist Walter Lippmann wrote:

A free press is not a privilege, but an organic necessity in a great society.

Much of the critical thinking applied by the Founding Fathers was grounded in the writings of Sir Edmund Burke.  Burke acknowledged “three estates in parliament” but he identified a much more important fourth estate: the press.  Burke recognized that the press had the ability to shape public opinion and this made them an important part of self-government.  Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas agreed with Burke:

The press enables the public’s right to know.  The right to know is crucial to the governing process of the people.

Along with the MSM either misreporting or hiding the truth from the public, the pro-family movement has for too long been perpetuating the lie of judicial tyranny and that Roe v Wade is “the law of the land.”

These organizations receive millions of dollars a year to fight “judicial tyranny” when that does not exist.  And while some do use the term “judicial activism,” these organizations, many of them run by lawyers, fail to point out that the judiciary is powerless to enact or enforce any law.  Instead of wasting their time and focus on the judiciary, they should be calling out both the legislature and executive branches of government at both the federal and state levels to reign in the judiciary and to ignore all unconstitutional rulings.

Many of these groups, the Family Research Council, Focus on the Family, Alliance Defense Fund, Liberty Counsel, American Center for Law and Justice, just to name a few, have for too long perpetuated the lie that the courts can establish “the law of the land.”  Abraham Lincoln rejected this notion and the Father of the Modern Conservative Movement in his Townhall.com article titled “History and the Judiciary” wrote:

For the sake of this republic I urge my friends, fellow leaders and Americans emphatically to repudiate the devastating myth that judges have the power to make and redefine our laws. We should do so rapidly and forcefully before our republic is replaced by the irresistible tyranny of men and women who believe that nihilist elites should make the rules and pass them to judges for formal announcement when the time is ripe for the latest step into the post-rule of law, post-moral abyss. Otherwise our “conservatism” will continue to be merely the rearguard for subtle left-wing revolution.

I urge all freedom-loving Americans who are sick and tired of judges ruling the day, legislatures being do-nothing bodies, and executives kowtowing to judicial malfeasance to first read Mr. Weyrich’s article above and then to contact all your elected officials and tell them you expect them to defend the constitution.  Also, send these five columns to all you know so that hopefully this will ignite a desire to learn more about their civic responsibility.

(Dave Jeffers is available for speaking engagements at churches and civic organizations on the role of religion in government.  Dave also conducts a four-hour seminar titled “Our American Christian Heritage.”  Visit Dave’s website for more information at http://davidjeffers.thevanguard.org/about-dave/.

 For the present article, see http://eaglesup.us:80/index.php?option=com_wrapper&Itemid=271

See also Conservative Collapse, and Biblical Government here on the Road to Emmaus.

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Date Posted -  08/23/2008   -   Date Last Edited - 09/15/2012