A series of discussions of Mark Levin’s new book,
The Liberty Amendments: Restoring the American Republic
Our first founding document states clearly that governments, “derive their just powers from the consent of the governed.”
We’ve all known something is very wrong in this nation, even our friends on the left. But no matter how we try to voice it, our ability to lend our consent to our government was taken from us, literally in the middle of the night. We never consented to the rulebreaking in Congress, the unconstitutional laws they passed, nor the unconscionable overwhelming of the legislative review process that is now the norm. We never consented to an Executive branch that keeps adding new powers to itself by decree almost daily. Like anyone over sixty relying on state run healthcare, our “consent” is on the Do Not Resuscitate list.
The collapse of the Constitutional framework and the cold disregard of our consent happened because we already went over that famous “cliff” everyone has been talking about since the Bush/Obama recession began. If some still think we have not, it’s because the wreck of something as massive as a state is a slow motion disaster. But the wreckage is quite real: with the exception of well-connected Democrat donors and the few remaining, unremittent capitalists, this is not a period of prosperity.
Yet many of us, like shipwreck survivors hanging on to floating debris, still believe we must hold onto that framework, our Constitution, for dear life. And so we have done, to our great credit. But sadly, the framework that once provided the ability for all men to rise to their full potential has, in it’s wreckage, left us in another terrible aspect of many shipwrecks. We’ve come to the part where the men who drown often have boot marks on their shoulders.
This is why Obama nods his silent, magnified consent to Al Sharpton, Eric Holder, the occasional DHS officers, and others who are fanning the flames of a race war. This is a period where war is growing more likely, not less. It’s Antebellum, all over again.
The state of our Constitution is not good. I know many of you hold on to the dream that our Constitution is still fully alive, but burdened, like a ship with too many barnacles. But we are past the days of mere burdensome accretions, where uncontrolled spending was our main problem. What we have is no longer alive and strong, but undead and lurching (or is it shambling?) toward an uncertain future demise. And there it is. You’re now hanging on to a zombie Constitution. It’s a zombie doctrine for a dying nation
Presidents Wilson and Roosevelt introduced the poison, Johnson stepped-up the dosage, the Bush/Obama NSA stuck needles in the Bill of Rights, and Obama performed the ritual, “removing of control over the body” (also known as “Obamacare”), followed by a horrifying ritual sacrifice (see “Benghazi”), and there you have it: zombiefied Constitution. As this was all happening, the Republicans mostly did nothing but hang out in the back during the ritual dance. When the high priests of The Sunday Morning Shows would glare their way, they would shuffle from foot to foot in an attempt to look like they were participating.
In the future, I’m sure the George Romeros or Peter Jacksons of the day will popularize the period. The script already looks like it was written by H.P. Lovecraft or Alan Moore. This is a post-Constitutional period, and we’re stuck with a Zombie Doctrine. (However, one bit of good news I can reveal is that no further nautical and shipwreck references will follow this paragraph.)
We face a choice, those of us who are stuck with this Zombie Doctrine: 1)We can stay with it all the way to the dystopian nightmare that all bloated, centrally controlled states become. 2)We can let go entirely and declare a new government—and then fight a bloody revolution or civil war to hold it. 3)We can emulate the left and attempt a “long march” that will essentially be a race against the totalitarians—and they have a huge head start. 4)We can stop fighting over surviving bits of our zombie Constitution and try—seriously this time—to restore it.
I know several veterans who would vote for option two in a heartbeat, and I can’t blame them. But the reality is, trying any of the other options and failing means option two happens by default. Thus, war may well be unavoidable. But let’s apply a little logic. Let’s assume war is most likely. If you have one chance at the outset to win that war, you take it, right? Why? To win, yes, but more importantly, to not get dragged into the depths of carnage we’ve seen so many times before. So what is the harm in trying another option first? Why not take one last chance to avoid that horrific, last argument of the people?
I ask you all to join in the effort. If nothing else, it gives you time to prepare for option two (which all of you should be doing, regardless). Besides, this effort represents a very good tactical approach.
In tactics, an easily definable, clearly understood goal—where success is measurable and obvious—is critical in order to achieve victory. In order to Restore our Constitution to health, we must remove the ability of the federal government to grow unchecked, and provide a way for the people to pare it back. Secondly, we must restore the right of the people to consent once again to governance. If we fail in both of those cases, then we will not have achieved success. This is a well-defined, measurable metric for success. That, and maybe a clever tee shirt means we are already well on our way.
The next big question is “how?”
Many of us knew that the answer lies among the states. The truth is, the various states in our republic are where the voice of the people really lies. (To understand this, look up “ballot initiative procedures.”) But we were laboring under two assumptions that made such an appeal to the states unlikely to succeed. First was the assumption that Article Five of the Constitution provided for the option of a “constitutional convention.” Second was that we would need to come up with a way to make the process called interposition work somehow, despite its failure in the past, and its lack of standing with regard to the Constitution itself. (See also, nullification.)
The good news is that we were wrong about that first assumption, and because of that, the second one becomes unnecessary. More importantly, the Article Five process leaves zero doubt as to its Constitutionality. The full explanation of why were wrong about the Article Five process is contained in Mark Levin’s proposed answer to the big question of “how?” He explains the wording of Article Five, and why a genuine Constitutional Convention is not legitimized under the existing Constitution in his new book, The Liberty Amendments: Restoring the American Republic.
A final point about tactics: Levin’s proposal is tightly focused. Rather than dealing with something as broad as the entire Conservative Agenda, it represents a set of goals that can be completely listed in a few pages. They are also goals that are useful to our political opponents. Thus they have the merit of being achievable.
Levin’s book lays out the case I described above, as well as suggesting several Constitutional Amendments. I urge people to read the book. Borrow a copy if you need to, but please read it. Then come back here over the next several weeks, where we are going to create a conversation on this topic. It will be in several installments.
This is the first such installment. Future installments will tackle issues that have already been discussed here, and then we will move on to the proposed Amendments themselves. A few things to note:
1) This process is going to happen. So I hope people will discuss it in the proper spirit, which is the desire to see it succeed. If it’s going to happen anyway, you may as well make sure it’s done right.
2) People need to engage the ideas embodying Restoration directly and not spend time chasing the specter of unfettered constitutional conventions. Levin has explained that nothing in the Constitution allows for its destruction or replacement. That can only happen via a coup or a revolution.
3) Lastly, this is not an open thread. Please stick to the discussion of the Restoration process. If you have an alternative proposal from that contained in Levin’s book, give a brief description of it here, and link to more detail if you have written about it elsewhere.
Let’s have fun with this.