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The Conservative/Libertarian appreciation thread

fireproof78

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POSTS: 342

Report this Mar. 13 2013, 1:15 pm

I'm not sure there is a right way to secede, even with all my readings. I understand that the States voluntarily joined the Union, but does that mean that at any time my state of Idaho can up and leave? What's the point of the union, then, if people just leave whenever there is a flight of fancy or disagreement over federal legislation? 


To use a loose analogy, its like marriage were you can just divorce at any time, no cause or reason. What is the point of the marriage? There is no commitment or desire to save the relationship at that point.


If any states had cause right now they could secede just because of Obamacare. That is a federalist expansion that is actually even more egregious that South Carolina's complaints prior to the Civil War.


I continue my readings of the Constitutional Convention and it is interesting that some members debated the dissolution of the Articles of Confederation, but was prevented by majority vote of other members wanting to preserve it. I note this because even under the Articles, the confederation could not just have members leave. Again, I'm not forming conclusions but pointing out frames of mind from the Founders.


To be fair, I am still researching, considering and figuring things out. It is very thought provoking discussion.

FleetAdmiral_BamBam

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Report this Mar. 13 2013, 3:42 pm

Quote: fireproof78 @ Mar. 13 2013, 1:15 pm

>

>I'm not sure there is a right way to secede, even with all my readings. I understand that the States voluntarily joined the Union, but does that mean that at any time my state of Idaho can up and leave? What's the point of the union, then, if people just leave whenever there is a flight of fancy or disagreement over federal legislation? 

>To use a loose analogy, its like marriage were you can just divorce at any time, no cause or reason. What is the point of the marriage? There is no commitment or desire to save the relationship at that point.

>If any states had cause right now they could secede just because of Obamacare. That is a federalist expansion that is actually even more egregious that South Carolina's complaints prior to the Civil War.

>I continue my readings of the Constitutional Convention and it is interesting that some members debated the dissolution of the Articles of Confederation, but was prevented by majority vote of other members wanting to preserve it. I note this because even under the Articles, the confederation could not just have members leave. Again, I'm not forming conclusions but pointing out frames of mind from the Founders.

>To be fair, I am still researching, considering and figuring things out. It is very thought provoking discussion.

>
Think about the process for a state to join the Union - it's not arbitrary or something that's spur of the moment.  It's really an agreement based on the Constitution.  But why can't a state reverse the process to secede if the other party (the Federal government) has broken the contract (the Constitution?)


Oh... and remember our Founding Fathers words when they wrote the Declaration of Independence - they talked about the concept of "The consent of the governed."  What happens when the governed no longer consent?  When the colonies rebelled against the Crown and declared independence, did they not essentially secede?


 


And marriage is a great analogy.  In the vast majority of cases, divorce shouldn't happen - especially if both the man and woman want to make the marriage work.  I hate divorce, but what about when one of the parties chooses to not make the marriage work and assaults the other, or tries to kill them?  Shouldn't the victim have recourse to protect themselves?


 


Additionally... individuals have the right to give up their US Citizenship - it's not popular, but it's not uncommon either.  The concept holds true for a state.


 


Of course, I would hope that no state ever leaves the USA, but I fully understand the thought process of people that want it to happen.  I would think that it's only a last resort because the Federal Government is choosing to ignore the rights of the citizens.

Lone Palm

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POSTS: 207

Report this Mar. 13 2013, 7:57 pm

...Davis and other Southern leaders were moral men, they did not always work towards a means of achieving a lasting peace... ...Davis himself believed that slavery would naturally evolve out of society yet took no steps to make it happen.


The Democrats bent over backwards to reach a compromise. After Lincoln's election, but before he took Office, a Committee of 13 (8 Dems and 5 Reps) was devised to try and broker a compromise that would draw South Carolina back into the Union. The Dems could have passed anything since they had the majority, but Jefferson Davis insisted that any compromise be passed by a dual majority. The Republicans rejected all attempts at compromise at Lincoln's insistence. Lincoln was a sectional candidate, who won only by a plurality of the vote. If the Republicans compromised, the Party would be destroyed and Lincoln wouldn't have a chance at a second term. Lincoln was Party before Union. 


Also, South Carolina (and other States upon their secession) made numerous attempts to buy out their share of the national debt. Napolean III even tried to broker a deal for the Conferacy, but Lincoln rejected all attempts at peace. 


Lincoln is responsible for the disaster of Fort Sumter. Both Buchanon and Lincoln were warned not to send supplies, as such action would lead to war. Buchanon listened to his advisors, and thus avoided war and the Union's dissolution. Lincoln, however, ignored his advisors and dispatched a military convoy into foreign territory, which is an act of war. He even sent a letter of his intentions to the Governor of SC. Lincoln could've otherwise sent the supplies in secret. Federal Forts are public property, funded by taxation. If a State secedes, it no longer pays taxes and the Federal Property is ceded back to the State. The firing on Fort Sumter was an act of defense by South Carolina.


On the issue of slavery... towards the end of the war, Pres. Jefferson dispatched a commissioner to France and England to gain international recognition for the Confederacy. The bargain was that if the two countries granted international recognition, he would try to end slavery within a five year period. Napolean III accepted the offer, but only if England agreed. England rejected the offer. http://www.jstor.org/stable/1915097?seq=1 and http://www.libertyclassroom.com/slavery-and-the-civil-war-revisited/  It's unclear how Jefferson would've achieved a Constitutional end to slavery, but he did attempt peace.  

fireproof78

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POSTS: 342

Report this Mar. 13 2013, 8:57 pm

I am not certain that Davis worked for peace as much as possible, especially after the war was lost. If he was so convinced of the need to end slavery, then the KKK and other such movements would not have been tolerated.


Again, the issue comes back to the legality of secession. I'm currently reading the notes from the Constitutional Convention and have not seen evidence for, nor am convinced that, the States can arbitrarily leave the Union. Again, I don't deny Lincoln overstepped and expanded Federal power. It doesn't make him a dictator, unless we will throw several other Presidents in to that category.


If secession is not legal then Lincoln had every right to reinforce Sumter as it was still Federal property and under his jurisdiction. The States were in a state of rebellion.


Like I have said, I am still reading and still researching but have not yet been convinced that secession is legal and if it is, that the Confederacy did it legally.


 

Lone Palm

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POSTS: 207

Report this Mar. 13 2013, 9:11 pm

Secession is an issue of much contention even now regarding Constitutionality. I am not convinced from my readings about both the Confederacy’s Secession, as well the Founding Fathers, that Secession is legal. This is probably where you and I will part ways, as I am not convinced that Secession is a Constitution right, and even if it is, I am not convinced the Confederate States went about in in a legal manner.


Here's my basis for secession:


1. The Declaration of Independence is in fact a Declaration of Secession, explaining the principle in full.


2. At the Philadelphia Convention to amend the Articles of Confederation, what was to become the 10th Amendment was at the top of every States' Proposed Amendments List. The 10th Amendment would also be at the top of their list when proposing the Bill of Rights (Madison, however, strategically placed the 10th Amendment at the bottom of the Bill of Rights in an attempt to minimize its importance).


3. All the States seceded from the Union devised under the Articles of Confederation.


4. New York, Virginia, and Rhode Island ratified the U.S. Constitution with provisions that  reserved the right of secession at any future date for themselves. The provisions would also extend recognition of secession to other States. Thus, secession was defined as a reserved right by both the Declaration of Independence and by the ratification ordinances of NY, VA, and RI prior to the adoption of the Bill of Rights. NY, VA, and RI were permitted into the Union without objection to their ordinances. 


5. Alexander Hamilton, Federalist Papers 81: "It is inherent in the nature of sovereignty not to be amenable to the suit of any individual without its consent. This is the general sense and the general practice of mankind; and the exemption, as one of the attributes of sovereignty, is now enjoyed by the government of every State in the Union... The contracts between a nation and individuals are only binding on the conscience of the sovereign, and have no pretensions to a compulsive force. They confer no right of action, independent of the sovereign will. To... authorize suits against States for the debts they owe... could not be done without waging war against the contracting State..., a power which would involve such a consequence, would be altogether forced and unwarranted." (The Federalist Papers were the basis for gaining the public's consent of the Constitution). 


And at the Constitution Convention, Hamilton stated, "To coerce the States is one of the maddest projects that was ever devised.... What picture does this idea present to our view? A complying State at war with a noncomplying State: Congress marching the troops of one State into the bosom of another? Here is a nation at war with itself. Can any reasonable man be well disposed toward a government which makes war and carnage the only means of supporting itself - a government that can exist only by the sword?"


6. Thomas Jefferson, First Inaugural Address: "If there be any among us who would wish to dissolve this Union or to change its republican form, let them stand undisturbed as monuments of the safety with which error of opinoin may be tolerated where reason is left free to combat it." - a defense of free speech and the right of secession. And nine years later, Jefferson would say, "If any state in the Union will declare that it prefers separation... to a countinuance in union... I have no hesitation in saying, 'let us separate.'"


7. John Quincy Adams (1839): "The indissoluble link of union between the people of the several states of this confederated nation is, after all, not in the right but in the heart. If the day should ever come (may Heaven avert it!) when the affections of the people of these States shall be alienated from each other; when the fraternal spirit shall give way to cold indifference, or collision of interests shall fester into hatred, the bands of political associations will not long hold together parties no longer attracted by the magnetism of conciliated interests and kindly sympathies; to part in friendship from each other, than to be held together by constraint. Then will be the time for reverting to the precedents which occurred at the formation and adoption of the Constitution, to form again a more perfect Union by dissolving that which could no longer bind, and to leave the separated parts to be reunited by the law of political gravitation to the center.


8. During the Nullification Crisis of 1832, South Carolina threatened to secede from the Union. The wide belief in the right of secession prompted compromise. 


9. Daniel Webster, Massachusetts Senator, (1851) said, "If the Northern States refuse, willfully and deliberately, to carry into effect that part of the Constitution which respects the restoration of fugitive slaves, and Congress provide no remedy, the South would no longer be bound to observe the compact. A bargain cannnot be broken on one side, and still bind the other side."


Finally, the States ratified the Constitution by State Conventions. South Carolina, and the accompanying States to secede, rescinded their ratification ordinances by State Convention. Why should a State Convenction be opposed for an ordinance retraction when it is acceptable for an ordinance ratification? 


fireproof, I know it's a lot of information. There are times I forget. I pass this on for you to keep in mind while continuing with your own research. I wish you the best of luck and look forward to the continuing debate. 


Finally, calling Lincoln a dictator would also have to include Roosevelt (both of them),  LBJ and Andrew Jackson, to name a few.


I don't hold those guys and the majority of the (Imperial) Presidents in much higher regard. To Lincoln's credit, Woodrow Wilson is arguably the worst President thus far. While not perfect, my personal favorites are John Tyler and Grover Cleveland (first term). John Tyler was good, because he fought his party to preserve the Constitution. He was the opposite of Lincoln.  

fireproof78

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POSTS: 342

Report this Mar. 13 2013, 9:19 pm

I find your basis sound but certainly see arguments from the other side, Madison, Hamilton and Jefferson in the Convention make arguments regarding Federal government overseeing the whole of the States. This was part of the provision to create a balance of powers within the Federal government.


I am more concerned that the Confederacy did not do it legally and that Lincoln engaged them on terms of rebellious states (Johnny Reb anyone?) rather than a sovereign nation. Even if secession is legal, to simply dissolve the Union and align with others, including other foreign powers, would smack of disrespect for the Constitution, not just on Lincoln's part but Davis' as well.


Also, I thought Obama was the worst, by far

Lone Palm

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POSTS: 207

Report this Mar. 13 2013, 9:21 pm

darkmokattanagra, sorry it's taking me so long to respond. My work schedule is in a state of flux this week. But I am working on a response. 

FleetAdmiral_BamBam

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Report this Mar. 14 2013, 9:13 am

Quote: Lone Palm @ Mar. 13 2013, 7:57 pm

>Lincoln was Party before Union.
Which is exactly what President Washington warned us about.

FleetAdmiral_BamBam

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POSTS: 46342

Report this Mar. 14 2013, 9:20 am

Quote: Lone Palm @ Mar. 13 2013, 7:57 pm

>On the issue of slavery... towards the end of the war, Pres. Jefferson dispatched a commissioner to France and England to gain international recognition for the Confederacy. The bargain was that if the two countries granted international recognition, he would try to end slavery within a five year period. Napolean III accepted the offer, but only if England agreed. England rejected the offer. http://www.jstor.org/stable/1915097?seq=1 and http://www.libertyclassroom.com/slavery-and-the-civil-war-revisited/  It's unclear how Jefferson would've achieved a Constitutional end to slavery, but he did attempt peace.  

>
Considering how prominently slavery was supported in CSA's Constitution, I think Jefferson was lying and really had no intention of doing it (or just making a political promise he knew wouldn't happen.)

FleetAdmiral_BamBam

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Report this Mar. 14 2013, 9:32 am

Quote: Lone Palm @ Mar. 13 2013, 9:11 pm

>2. At the Philadelphia Convention to amend the Articles of Confederation, what was to become the 10th Amendment was at the top of every States' Proposed Amendments List. The 10th Amendment would also be at the top of their list when proposing the Bill of Rights (Madison, however, strategically placed the 10th Amendment at the bottom of the Bill of Rights in an attempt to minimize its importance).
I'm not too sure I agree with you on this.  Remember, there were twelve original amendments, ten of which were immediately ratified and one more ratified as the 27th amendment.  My opinion is that Madison arranged them in a logical order as when we read the amendments in order, they flow nicely with it ending as when all of the above doesn't apply, then it's reserved to the states / people.

FleetAdmiral_BamBam

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Report this Mar. 14 2013, 9:41 am

Quote: Lone Palm @ Mar. 13 2013, 9:11 pm

>To Lincoln's credit, Woodrow Wilson is arguably the worst President thus far.
I'm starting to wonder about that with Obama here.

FleetAdmiral_BamBam

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Report this Mar. 14 2013, 9:51 am

Sehlat123

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Report this Mar. 15 2013, 5:02 pm

Did you hear about the guy in Wisconsin who saved a woman's life a few days ago?


http://fox6now.com/2013/03/12/marine-with-concealed-carry-permit-stops-man-from-beating-woman/


It's a good thing guns aren't illegal!


You see things like that every day. A lot of you guys have probably seen the viral video of Kai the homeless hitchiker who saved a someone's life with a hatchet. Granted, it wasn't a gun, but he was armed. That's what we need to bear arms for: not to kill people, but to save them.


"Borg. Sounds Swedish."

fireproof78

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POSTS: 342

Report this Mar. 20 2013, 8:54 pm

Regarding secession: the marriage analogy is apt because it also reflects the current attitude of our culture towards marriage. If one is affronted at all in a marriage then one has the right to divorce, not questions asked. It is poor marriage if you can up and leave at any point with attempts at reconciliation.


Now, I understand that South Carolina attempted to list deal with the Federal Government and Lincoln rebuffed such efforts. I also know that Davis' argues in his book that since the States voluntarily joined, they could withdrawal at their whim.


I have more reading to do, but I am still not convinced that the States can just withdrawal with no form of "marriage counseling" to resolve differences. I think Bam_Bam asked me what efforts should have been made, what sort of circumstance would I consider lawful for secession of a State or States. First of all, a list of grievances would have to be presented before Congress in order to resolve any complaints. That is the point of the Federal Government that the US uses-States have equal say in the government and have a right to be heard.


While my research is ongoing, out of curiosity, I would still not equate Lincoln as a tyrant or a dictator. However, he took heavy handed approach to deal with what he considered to be rebels not another nation. That explains why he did what he did because he viewed the states as being rebellious, not as another foreign power to be treated with.


All of my reading has led me to a single conclusion-there were mistakes made on both sides. If Davis was so willing to see an end of slavery, why did he not assist in Reconstruction? Why were Southern leaders and law makers so hesitant to help and prevent much of the mistreatment of freed slaves? It was like they said “We lost…good luck North making us comply.”


It’s a sad statement that so much harm could have been prevented if people were willing to help.

Lone Palm

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POSTS: 207

Report this Mar. 21 2013, 5:26 pm

You keep implying that Madison thought the overbalance of landed interest was a bad thing. As if he was honestly concerned about making sure the majority had a vested interest in private property and the Constitution. If that were true, he would have went on to explain why government should reduce poverty to secure the interests of the majority. Instead, he went on to explain why government should reduce democracy to secure the interests of the "opulent minority."


Specifically "...should reduce poverty to secure the interests of the majority," equates to political favoritism and appeals to majority rule, which is what politicians do to gain and stay in Office. During and after the Revolutionary War, State Governments appealed to democratic processes (securing the interests of their State majority) by intervening in their local economies with State-run Central Banks for the dual purposes of paying off war debts and providing their citizens with favoritism against other States in an effort to reduce local poverty. However, the economic intervention by these central authorities, having emitted unbacked bills of credit or fiat money, led to ruinous inflation and trade wars among the varying States with an increase in poverty for all. The Founding Fathers received a literal crash course in economics, learning first hand why centrally managed economies fail. The economic deprivation, caused by (State) Government intervention, was thus a causal factor leading into the Philadelphia Convention for the purpose of amending the Articles of Confederation. Ultimately, the Founding Fathers opted for a Constitution that minimzed government intervention in the market, because they recognized that the government is incapable of directly reducing poverty. After all, the government can only enrich one individual or group by stealing from and making destitute another individual or group. The best the government can do is to guarantee the economic fundamentals (sound money, private property, contracts and voluntary associations) that are necessary to generate wealth.


To provide the central government with the power or means to reduce poverty, a central bank or taxation, simultaneously provides that government with the power to create poverty, as the States previously proved. The effect is simply broadened from a microeconomic scale (or State Level) to a macroeconomic scale (nationwide). There is no reason to believe, and much evidence exists to the contrary, that a central bank works better on a macro scale than a micro scale.

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