Saturday, January 12, 2013

The White House 'Responds'

As we've previously pointed out, petitioning the White House for 'permission' to secede is a silly way of asserting the right to self-government, but it's at least an interesting way to see where popular sentiment is heading. And the recent flurry of petitions does seem to reveal that sentiment to be heading somewhere other than the status quo.
In any case, it appears that one Jon Carson, ostensibly spokesperson for the White House, has finally issued a (rather historically and legally ignorant) response piece of propaganda on behalf of the White House in answer to the many secession petitions.
Like a typical contemporary government functionary, Mr. Carson presumes to fabricate both history and law as he goes along, and the public is presumably expected to naïvely 'go along' too, like good little subjects (after all, it's from the White House!).
Carson says the founding fathers 'enshrined' in the Constitution 'the right to change our national government through the power of the ballot,' but 'they did not provide a right to walk away from it.' He seems to have forgotten that: 
  • Before there ever was a Constitution, the founding fathers invoked 'the power of the ballot' to 'walk away' from a 'national government' (details 'enshrined' here). They would have been utter hypocrites to deny the same right to anybody else, including subsequent generations — and they didn't, either in the Constitution that they ratified, or anywhere else (see below).
  • With a few statist exceptions, neither the founding fathers who ratified it, nor the Constitution itself, speak of any such thing as a 'national government'. Their objective, as described right there in the Constitution, was instead a federal government (there's a difference), with limited, enumerated powers delegated to it by the States, all other powers being unequivocally 'reserved to the States respectively, or to the people' (see the 10th Amendment).
Mr. Carson then has the nerve to quote Abraham Lincoln — who deliberately acted outside his lawfully limited authority to unleash several years of horrendous, bloody violence against the lives, liberty, and property of those whom he pretended to serve — as saying 'in contemplation of universal law and of the Constitution the Union of these States is perpetual'.
What Carson hopes his readers won't notice is that — whatever 'contemplation' Lincoln had in mind — there is neither an unequivocal 'universal law' nor any reference in the Constitution itself to anything being 'perpetual'. Like any other politician with an agenda, Mr. Lincoln was merely dressing up his personal opinion and political will with a phony veneer of unquestionable legality.
Using the 'perpetual union' fallacy as a springboard, Carson then announces that Lincoln's bloody war against the South somehow 'vindicated the principle that the Constitution establishes a permanent union between the States,' when in fact it never did — and still doesn't. (Read it yourself and see if you can find anything even remotely resembling the words 'perpetual' or 'permanent' — or, just for fun, even 'indivisible'. For bonus points, try and find the clause authorizing a president to use military force to prevent one or more States from withdrawing — through the power of the ballot — from voluntary participation in the Union.)
As if that weren't enough, Mr. Carson hastens to make much of the fact that Lincoln's Supreme Court subsequently 'confirmed' Lincoln's  arbitrary opinion by asserting its own arbitrary opinion that '[t]he Constitution, in all its provisions, looks to an indestructible Union composed of indestructible States'.
Trouble is, neither the Court, nor Mr. Carson, could put a finger on a single constitutional 'provision' (let alone 'all' of them) even suggesting that anything (never mind a 'State' or a 'Union') is 'indestructible'. (Go ahead, read it yourself and see if you can find anything even remotely resembling the word 'indestructible' in connection with a political entity.)
Though Jon Carson may have accurately quoted both Mr. Lincoln and the Supreme Court that reigned in the wake of the domestic slaughter over which he presided, when it comes to the intent of the founding fathers and legal document they produced, Carson's White House statement is comprised of historical and legal fiction couched in terminology designed to make its lies sound patriotic and noble.

Whether the American public is naïve enough to believe and acquiesce to such statist propaganda remains to be seen, but we're not putting any money on their objective critical thinking skills. Yet.