Thursday, November 15, 2012

"There's some good in this world, and it's worth fighting for."

I've thought long and hard about writing this. There's nothing really new for me to say, after all, and it's not like people are suddenly having little light bulbs of liberty flash on above their noggins. But then I'm reminded of one of my hardest-won lessons, especially with the door to Middle Earth re-opening next month:

The 2012 Presidential election was going to be a disappointment either way for Constitutional Libertarians (i.e., the very essence of Americanism), but I'd at least hoped for a repeal of the mandatory tax that is not a tax but is a tax. Sadly, tyranny won the day. Largely uninformed and decidedly racist, extremists put their ignorant seal of approval on the indefinite detention and torture of Americans without charges, representation or due process. They sanctioned Al Qaeda's  9-11 anniversary attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, the rape and murder of ambassador Christopher Stevens, and the subsequent cover-up and diffusing of accountability. Twice. They blessed secret kill lists and the nationalization of finance and automobiles as if we were some sun-burnt banana republic on bath salts. These are but a few of the virtues my intellectually dishonest "peers" found agreeable.

I'll freely admit, I'm having a hard time relating to friends who would lock me up and throw away the key based on nothing more than whim. How is such a thing even part of one's decision process? What accord could I ever have with such a person? What is this, 1312? Some of them are atheists with a curious concentration on Christianity and I find the irony, well, ironic. Just as curiously, many are of the mind that all discourse must cease now that the quadrennial American Idol voting has ended.

If nothing else, I'm no summer soldier or sunshine patriot. That's the gist of it for me: on election night, a post-Sandy Nor'easter was adding insult to injury in my home state. If there was any other place I would've been, it was Washington's Crossing. On a night far worse, tired men with no shoes and seemingly less hope languished on the banks of the Delaware. They didn't quit, they didn't wait for a bailout - they pressed on regardless of discomfort or the odds. General Knox moved artillery through mud that would make a sow think twice, and that has always amazed me. 

Now there's talk of secession, and I couldn't be happier. What, pray tell, would be the next logical move other than this? I've said it before, and probably too much: the federal government does not dictate to you, they operate at your behest. Despite its loathsome largesse, it is not bigger or more important than YOU, the citizen.

While for the most part symbolic, the petitions speak volumes. Extremists do not have the right to denigrate, dictate, disregard the Constitution and then cry, "Can't we all just get along?" It doesn't work that way. If you walked into a KFC and ordered a Whopper, what would they tell you? If you brought 20 of your friends back and demanded 21 Whoppers, what would they tell you? Extrapolate the numbers out as far as wish, and the truth remains the same: there are core American tenets that will not be compromised by any person or party, particularly at the expense of those who hold them dear.

Let's say Merica was not a star, for the sake of debate, and let's presume yet another undiscovered country awaits in the west: Corvidia. It's a lush, green land, bountiful to the point of embarrassment. It's a clean slate, a new-new Jerusalem, a chance to loose the chains and start anew. No church or king telling you what to do or think or feel. In the words of Godfrey of Ibelin, "You are not what you were born, but what you have it in yourself to be." What might the founding principles be?

1. Corvidia shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

2. A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed

3. No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.

4. The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

5. No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

6. In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defence.

7. In suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.

8. Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

9. The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

10, If you molest, or kill a child with intent, and are found guilty in a court of law, you will be sentenced to death.

11. If death is the cessation of a life form's evolution, then life must logically be the very first stage of that evolution.

12. All law-abiding, tax paying citizens of Corvidia have the right to marry whomever they wish.   

13. Easily my favorite, it's the wild card which asserts, "OK, I know there are some cagey f@#$%^s out there who like to dabble in clever wordplay. To prevent their commendable erudition from subverting this entire endeavor, We The People put forth: The powers not delegated to Corvidia by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

Alas, what next? Rep. Ron Paul bowed out not with a whisper, but with a broadside. Was there ever a finer President who never was? For hope's sake, I will not lament his unfortunate but well-earned absence. Rather, I will look to the thousands who've heeded his call and picked up the banner of Liberty. I've included the transcript below, as it should be required reading. Et in Corvidia ego: