Public Service Announcement
October 20, 2013
Fifteen members of the Coastal Carolina Taxpayers Association (CCTA) left New Bern before dawn Saturday, October 19th, to attend a day long “Nullify Now!” seminar at the Convention Center in Raleigh. The CCTA members along with about 300 other attendees heard from a diverse, intelligent, well-spoken group of presenters that included Thomas Woods, Jr., PhD who literally wrote the book on nullification. Dr. Woods has written a number of books which have topped the New York Times’ Best Seller List; his latest is Nullification.
Mike Church of New Orleans who has a week day program from 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. on XM/Sirius radio channel 125 spoke on the early history of nullification and interposition as seen through the writings of “little James Madison” (very short and slender even by 1700’s standards), Thomas Jefferson, and John Taylor of Caroline County, Virginia whom Mike described as, “James Madison on steroids and his inspiration.” Mike used his well-developed ability to imitate accents to read each person’s writing so that it sounded very much as one would imagine that person spoke. He brought history alive. Mike illustrated that Madison and Jefferson believed it was the duty of the states “to nullify and interpose” themselves between the citizens of their state and the effects of any unconstitutional law passed by Congress.
Mike Maharrey, national communications director for the Tenth Amendment Center and author of two books, told a fascinating and heartwarming story about how northern states applied nullification to successfully defy the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850. Almost every northern state passed Personal Liberty Laws. These laws provided that state jails could not house fugitive slaves, persons accused of being fugitive slaves had to have a jury trial, and if the trial proved that the person was not a fugitive slave, the person claiming to be his “owner” could be tried for attempted kidnapping. These state laws in defiance of the national Fugitive Slave Act held up, and the newfound freedom of many former slaves was upheld by using the concept of nullification.
Jason Rink, a producer of documentaries, read from a stirring dissenting opinion written by Justice Clarence Thomas in 2005 as part of his talk. It held up federal overreach as an outrageous usurpation of the rights, prerogatives, and sovereignty of states and their citizens. The clarity and logic with which Justice Thomas expressed himself was breathtaking.
Former North Carolina House member, Glenn Bradley, spoke about how Article VI of the Constitution makes it clear that “only laws made pursuant to the constitution are the supreme law of the land.” He pointed out that laws made in areas in which the federal government has not been authorized to take action are null and void. He added that Amendments IX and X also make it clear that items not given to the federal government to deal with, and not denied to the states by the constitution, are reserved to the people and to the states. Glenn believes it is important that our citizens understand these concepts.
Doug Tjaden, author, pastor, and businessman, spoke about the problems the Federal Reserve cause the American people by making it more difficult for them to look after their families financially. Doug explained how the use of fiat currency is creating a large hidden tax and causing each family’s money to purchase fewer goods and services. He mentioned several free market solutions that are being explored within various states.
Adam Love, Matt Collins, and Nicole Revels did a session on “Effective Grassroots Political Activism.”
Dr. Greg Brannon, the Cary OB-Gyn physician who is running for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by Kay Hagen, began by talking about the legitimate reason to constitute a government as expressed in the American Declaration of Independence. Greg spoke of our being “endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness,” and he said that “to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.” The Declaration puts it pretty simply. Government is intended to protect the rights of the people. Greg went on to talk about federal government powers granted in the Constitution, and said that there are 33 powers given to the legislative branch, 13 to the executive branch, and 6 to the judicial branch. As he began to talk about ObamaCare, it seemed clear that it does not fit under any of those powers. Incidentally, Greg pointed out that there are eleven and a half million words in ObamaCare. He went on to discuss ways states can protect their citizens from ObamaCare.
Dr. Dan Eichenbaum, a conservative television and talk radio personality who espouses “limited government, individual freedom, personal responsibility, fiscal restraint, private property rights, and free market economic solutions,” spoke on “Nullification and Gun Control.”
The last speaker before Dr. Woods’ wrap-up was a surprise to many in the audience. She styled herself, “Publius Haldah,” and called her talk, “James Madison Rebukes Nullification Deniers.” As you will recall, “Publius” is the pseudonym used by James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, and John Jay when they wrote the eighty-five essays called the “Federalist Papers” about the way the government was to work under the Constitution. Publius Haldah’s grasp of what is in the Constitution, what things originate in the Constitution, and what things are granted by God, and the logic that flows from that juxtaposition as seen by our founders was amazing. She spoke in crisp, clear sentences. Idea followed idea in such logical succession that it was easy to follow as a complicated whole emerged from a simple series of ideas.
Publius’ conclusion follows.
“The federal government and state governments have different spheres of operation. The federal government is “supreme” only in those few and enumerated objects delegated exclusively to it. The States and The People retain supremacy in all other matters. When the federal government usurps powers retained by the States or the People, it becomes unlawful and illegitimate. Nullification is proper.”
CCTA members who attended are Don Murdoch, Nancy Murdoch, Connie Hanna, Lynn Childs, Kathryn Blankley, Ryan Meadows, Katherine Wyatt, Kim Fink, Glenn Fink, Randy Siler, Lillian Creger, Mary Delaney, Terrie Winter, Hal James, and Raynor James.
Info provided by:
Raynor James, PR Chair, Coastal Carolina Taxpayers Association (CCTA)
305 Calico Drive, New Bern, North Carolina, 28560