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Author Topic: More Revolt  (Read 1058 times)
Jerrymac
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« on: March 27, 2009, 10:23:39 AM »

http://news.yahoo.com/s/csm/20090327/ts_csm/arogue

States rebel against Washington
By Patrik Jonsson
Fri Mar 27, 4:00 am ET

Atlanta – There's an old joke in South Carolina: Confederate President Jefferson Davis may have surrendered at the Burt-Stark mansion in Abbeville, S.C., in 1865, but the people of state Rep. Michael Pitts's district never did.

With revolutionary die-hards behind him, Mr. Pitts has fired a warning shot across the bow of the Washington establishment. As the writer of one of 28 state "sovereignty bills" – one even calls for outright dissolution of the Union if Washington doesn't rein itself in – Pitts is at the forefront of a states' rights revival, reasserting their say on everything from stem cell research to the Second Amendment.

"Washington can be a bully, but there's evidence right now that there are people willing to resist our bully," said Pitts, by phone from the state capitol of Columbia.

Just as California under President Bush asserted itself on issues ranging from gun control to medical marijuana, a motley cohort of states – from South Carolina to New Hampshire, from Washington State to Oklahoma – are presenting a foil for President Obama's national ambitions. And they're laying the groundwork for a political standoff over the 10th Amendment, which cedes all power not granted to Washington to the people.

The movement's success will largely depend on whether Washington sees these legislative insurgents as serious – or, as Pitts puts it, as just "a bunch of rednecks."

"There's a lot of frustration when someone quite distant from you forces you to do something you don't want to do," says Steve Smith, director of the Weidenbaum Center on the Economy, Government and Public Policy at Washington University in D.C. "That's the root cause, and it ends up being rationalized in constitutional terms."

Resurgent states
The reversal of the federal stem cell research ban, a stimulus package widely seen as a backdoor grasp for more federal power, and fears about gun control have accelerated a state sovereignty movement that began taking shape under the Bush administration. In the past, both liberals and conservatives have used states' rights arguments for political expedience. That may be the case now as ousted conservatives try to force issues out of Washington and into states, where they have a better chance of winning them.

"Where power resides and who gets to do what – there's been an ongoing interpretation of that through our history," says Idaho State Rep. George Sayler of Coeur d'Alene, who voted against a states' rights bill that passed recently in the Gem State. "Sometimes the federal government asserts a stronger role, and it looks now like we might be getting into a period where the states" push for more power.

Some examples:

•The Idaho House began considering Wednesday a law against introducing "vicious animals" into the state – a direct rebuttal of the federal wolf reintroduction program.

•Montana and Tennessee have introduced proposals to expand gun rights. Tennessee State Sen. Doug Jackson says his bill to ban proposed federal "microstamping" of ammunition could spark a movement. "The trampling on our rights to possess firearms is symbolic of a power grab by the federal government on a much larger scale," said Senator Jackson, by phone from Nashville.

•Oklahoma and Georgia are both considering limits on stem cell research in response to Mr. Obama's reversal of the federal stem cell ban. It's the flip side of the Bush era when several Northeastern states allowed such research despite the federal ban.

The status of "state sovereignty" resolutions are largely up in the air, with a few passed, some moving through committee, and some voted down. New Hampshire's resolution, the only one with a "nullification" of the Union clause, was voted down largely along partisan lines.

A response to federal expansion
Although the idea of states' rights took hold in the run-up to the Civil War in order for the South to preserve, among other things, the institution of slavery, today's debates are really about whether there's any power left for the states to carve out of the Constitution.

"If you set up the principle where the federal government can do everything, then, yes, eventually they will do everything. If not, where's the line they can't cross?" says Michael Boldin, president of the Tenth Amendment Center in Los Angeles. "That's the Constitution, I believe."

The courts mainly stood by as federal power expanded by great leaps in the 1930s and the 1960s. There's been another burst of federal expansion in the 2000s, including Mr. Bush's USA Patriot Act and Obama's proposed overhaul of banking regulations.

The fact is, "there's no longer any effective limitations on federal power," says Randy Barnett, a Georgetown law professor who argued for California's medical marijuana law in front of the Supreme Court.

Yet the state sovereignty movement is by no means frivolous and could have significant political firepower. The medical marijuana case in California, for instance, showed that Washington can be forced to scale back its ambitions in the face of populist sentiment.

And although Pitts hails from Abbeville, the place where the South's first secession votes were cast, he insists that today's efforts to check federal power aren't limited to regional pockets or even political affiliation. "The mainstream media would portray some of us as rednecks, whether we're from Pennsylvania, Oregon, or South Carolina," says Pitts. "But this is a wake-up call. And if Washington doesn't heed that wake-up call, revolution is on the horizon."
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kathyp
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« Reply #1 on: March 27, 2009, 10:38:45 AM »

great to see.  if more states get on with this, it will work.  there is more power in the states for protest than in the individual.  representatives need to get the word out so that people can get behind them.

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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

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vermmy35
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« Reply #2 on: March 27, 2009, 02:24:26 PM »

and so it begins.  These are some dark days ahead of us and I fear where we are headed Cry
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lmehaffey
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« Reply #3 on: March 27, 2009, 03:20:47 PM »

"Whenever our affairs go obviously wrong, the good sense of the people will interpose and set them to rights." --Thomas Jefferson to David Humphreys, 1789.

Good old Thomas Jefferson! We could use a few statesmen like him in today's Government.
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Keith13
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« Reply #4 on: March 27, 2009, 03:43:53 PM »

I thought about this before obama. I do not believe a revolution is possible I believe Washington would bring US troops against the rebels revolution sect whatever you want to call it. If not federal troops the hundreds of thousand of federal agents. I just do not see a revolution occouring, all the leaders would be arrested.
It would be a public backlash if people claiming a revolution went to arms with Ferderal agents and some young FBI agent is left dead in the streets. Right now no one has a problem dumping tea in a bay somewhere but if those same people took up arms and marched on DC they would be confronted. If they killed an agent the media would plaster them as (pick your word cult militia whatever) but the next thing would be the full force of the federal govt would rain down on the group. Because of that I think we will have to suck it up and hope for change in 3 years 10 months

Keith
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lmehaffey
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« Reply #5 on: March 27, 2009, 04:04:22 PM »

I thought about this before obama. I do not believe a revolution is possible I believe Washington would bring US troops against the rebels revolution sect whatever you want to call it. If not federal troops the hundreds of thousand of federal agents. I just do not see a revolution occouring, all the leaders would be arrested.
It would be a public backlash if people claiming a revolution went to arms with Ferderal agents and some young FBI agent is left dead in the streets. Right now no one has a problem dumping tea in a bay somewhere but if those same people took up arms and marched on DC they would be confronted. If they killed an agent the media would plaster them as (pick your word cult militia whatever) but the next thing would be the full force of the federal govt would rain down on the group. Because of that I think we will have to suck it up and hope for change in 3 years 10 months

Keith

I pretty much agree with you here.....the use of force is THEIR strong suit, and the use of force against them would fail. A lesson or two, however, from Thoreau, Ghandi, and King might be an approach to an answer. There's a lot of change-making power in moral outrage against a government which uses force to subdue a non-violent resistance. I'm not being a starry-eyed romantic, here, either: history can show the effectiveness of pitting the ying against the yang in order to create real balance.
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Jerrymac
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« Reply #6 on: March 27, 2009, 05:26:45 PM »

The revolution would be a long way off. By then many in the military would know which side to be on. After all, there is the oath they take to defend the constitution.
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kathyp
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« Reply #7 on: March 27, 2009, 06:50:02 PM »

go back and read 1984, watch red dawn, read animal farm, read brave new world, anthem, and atlas shruged.

i think we are to late.
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
reinbeau
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« Reply #8 on: March 27, 2009, 07:55:18 PM »

Wow - thanx, Kathy, you just bummed me out totally.  angry  I certainly hope we aren't too late - and I've read most of those books.  I know where you're coming from, but......
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kathyp
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« Reply #9 on: March 27, 2009, 08:24:52 PM »

didn't mean to bum you out!  well....maybe just a little.

look at it from the point of view of history.  every country that has had a radical change internally, and for the worse, has gone into it willingly.  the population has the best of intentions and often a good reason to wish for change.  however, what they get is never what they wanted.  russia, france, germany, are good examples.  Venezuela is the most recent.  all those countries had major problems and bad leadership.  all the people had a right to look for change. however, they embraced change without a well defined goal and without thought to the consequences.  those who led the revolutions knew exactly what they wanted and they used the anger of the people to get it.

it looks to me like we have done the same.  we embraced change without a definition of change.  now we are watching this and not believing what we are seeing.  we think that what is happening, can't happen in this country.  by the time we wake up, it will be to late. 

as for the military, yes we take an oath to protect and defend the constitution.  there are ways to corrupt the military.  change the top leadership, and the bad stuff trickles down.  it is really hard for the average soldier/sailor/marine, to come to the point where they believe the leadership is sending them the wrong way.  most 18 year old kids understand the oath, but they don't understand the constitution.  after all, we don't teach that stuff in school anymore.  in addition, more are being deployed, while the defense budget is being cut. 

in russia, part of the military tried to stop the revolution.  they failed.  in germany, some of the military tried to stop hitler.  they failed.  by the time they understood what was happening, it was to late.

this country staged one of the only successful revolutions in history, from the point of view of the outcome.  we did it because the people who led it were not after power and money.  they were not looking for a place to rule.  they wanted freedom for all.  we have had our glitches, but keeping in mind the goal, we have worked most of them out.  now we have thrown it away because freedom for all became free for all.
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
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