Of the People - By the People - and For the People - RR253A1

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Professor: Rushdoony, Dr. R. J.
Title: Of the People, By the People, and For the People-Delivered July 1965
Course: Course - Aspects of American History
Subject: Subject:History
Lesson#: 5
Length: 1:13:01
TapeCode: RR253A1
Audio: Chalcedon Archive
Transcript: .docx Format
Aspects of American History.jpg

This transcript is unedited. It was:
Archived by the Mt. Olive Tape Library
Digitized, transcribed, and published by Christ Rules
Posted by with permission.


Before beginning I’d like to call your attention to...[edit]

Before beginning I’d like to call your attention to a little document that tells us something of the nature of subversion. And how subversive we always use the familiar and patriotic themes races and expressions as an entree to people. In June 1917, a people’s council of America was organized which was modeled on exactly the same basis as the council of workmen’s and soldiers -soviet- of Russia. But it was organized four months before the soviets began their existence. This Marxist group had as it’s executive secretary Lewis Longer, it’s financial secretary Rebecca Shelley, and the name of the treasurer is very interesting- Dr. David Starr Jordan, President of Standford at the time. Among the members of the committee were Max Eastmen, Eugene Debbs, Morris Hilkowitz, James Marv, and the Rabbi Judah al Max. [00:01:21]

In August of that year ...[edit]

In August of that year 1917, Roger Baldwin wrote to Baukner “Do steer away from making it look like a socialist enterprise. Too many people have already gotten the idea that it is nine-tenths a socialist movement. Do get into the movement just as strong as possible the leaders in the labor circles. We want also to look like patriots in everything we do. We want to get a lot of good flags, talk of big deal about the constitution and what our forefathers wanted to make this country. And to show that we are {?} that really stand for the spirit of our institutions.” Baukner replied, “I agree with you that we should keep proclaiming our loyalty and patriotism. I will see to it that we have glides [?] and similar paraphernalia.

“Government of the people, by the people, for the people.” This term has been so extensively used by subversives that it is difficult now to understand what the meaning of this expression originally was. When Lincoln used it in it’s final and decisive form he was using an expression that was more or less current in the United States for a few generations. [00:02:58]

It is now commonly taken to mean three things[edit]

It is now commonly taken to mean three things; first the doctrine of popular sovereignty, second the concept of democracy and the democratic state, third it is taken to mean the equation of government with the state. Now all these popular meanings of government of, by, for, the people, are myths. Constitutionalism is government by law. And constitutionalism is the product of the colonial period, it is basically a Christian concept. And basic to the idea of constitutionalism is the belief in a higher law, the Law of God. This is not merely my say so- one of our leading modern liberals Edward S. Corwin in his book “The “Higher Law” Background of American Constitutionalism” has admitted to that basic to the document the U.S. constitution is the belief that there is a higher law: the Law of God. [00:04:20]

This Law is the supreme court above and over the federal government[edit]

And that this Law is the supreme court above and over the federal government and all human orders. Constitutionalism is a restraint placed upon the Federal Union and the people are also restrained in part by the constitution but basically by the civil and criminal law of the states. So that according to constitutionalism, neither the federal government nor the people are to be trusted.

Constitutionalism as a result is hostile to popular sovereignty, it is hostile to democracy, and it is hostile to the creation of government of state. The basic premise of constitutionalism is that in neither the federal government nor in man do we trust. Now to examine these three concepts a little more closely. First of all the doctrine of popular sovereignty we have said that it is not a part of our constitutional heritage. The very word and idea of sovereignty is bypassed by the U.S. constitution, and this is a deliberate and a significant omission. Father John Courtney Murray has written the term “legal sovereignty” makes no sense in America, where sovereignty is the alien term must be used as purely political. The United States has a government, or better, a structure of governments operating on different levels. The American state has no sovereignty in the classical, continental sense. [00:06:29]

Then a very prominent and brilliant English historian has called attention to the same fact. Now Doctor Paulard has said “The colonies had been as anxious to get rid of James II in 1688 as they were to be free of parliament in 1786! Their fundamental objection was that any sovereignty vested in any state whatever, even in their own, Americans may be defined as that part of the English speaking world which has instinctively revolted against the doctrine of the sovereignty of the state, and has not quite successfully striven to maintain that attitude from the time of the pilgrim fathers to the present day. The colonists not only denied that right of a representative body tax those who were not but those who were represented and asserted fundamental rights with which no legislature, however democratic or representative, could interfere! It is this denial of all sovereignty which gives it’s profound and permanent interest to the American revolution. [00:07:42]

The American revolution, the pilgrim fathers crossed...[edit]

The American revolution, the pilgrim fathers crossed the Atlantic to escape from sovereign power, Washington called it a monster, the professor of American history at Oxford called it a _____{?}, and Mr. Lansing writes of a peace conference that nine-tenths of all international difficulties arise out of the problem of sovereignty and the so called sovereign state. Now the fact that they avoided the very word sovereignty is well worth the idea significant! The U.S. constitution is the only constitution in the modern world that avoids the very word sovereignty. And it was because they denied the doctrine of the sovereignty of any state or of man simply because they believed in the sovereignty of God. This is an important fact.

The background of it is feudalist. Now the minute you can mention the word feudalism it’s amusing sometimes the reaction you do get! because we have been brainwashed by our education and feudalism is dirty word in terms of modern education. But really the word feudalism and federalism are basically the same concepts! Feudalism indeed has a long history in Europe and it’s easy to go to the history of feudalism and pick out a great many of these facts. But many of them of course are not true. [00:09:31]

And with the others there is no history that is not...[edit]

And with the others there is no history that is not without its unhappy aspects. Serfdom by the way was NOT a product of feudalism. Serfdom was a product of the Roman empire. How did serfdom -and it’s interesting to digress their moment because it’s a very significant fact- how did serfdom develop? well, as Rome increased in it’s statism taxation grew heavier and heavier, until finally it was no longer possible to own property. You were taxed out of existence! You paid so much in taxes that if after you bought a piece of property you were paying more for the payments in taxes each month. That sounds familiar doesn’t it? [00:10:28]

Now what happened? Well, finally among the farmers...[edit]

Now what happened? Well, finally among the farmers medley, and it started with them, said, “This is no good! We’re not land owners, we’re renters.” What’s allowed to be big politicians- they had an in with the with government with forced taxes concerns. So finally all of Italy was reduced to serfdom because the small farmer who had been wiped out already by taxes, sold out or handed his property over to a big politician and said you take care of me and I’ll work the land. It’ll be yours, you’ll get a percentage of it, and I’ll get my living off of it. And finally just a handful of politicians owned all of the rural land in Italy. And this began to spread throughout the empire- THIS is how serfdom started! Because taxes became a second purchase of property. And you were paying more in taxes than you paid to buy the property.

This created serfdom. Feudalism gradually eliminated serfdom. What was feudalism? Well feudalism was deep centralized civil government. It meant that the basic authority rested in the local township or in the city or in the {?} lords -the independent farmer- or in the local lord and his serfs. Each of these units represented a semi independent government and most of the authority of government rested on the local level and not on the national level. So that the king was relatively weak and he was under law. [00:12:36]

He was a constitutional monarch he was not under feudalism...[edit]

He was a constitutional monarch he was not under feudalism, an absolute monarch! It was decentralized government. And the basic document when you have any history of American constitutionalism of is magna carta is it not? And what is magna carta the feudal document. What happened? Well the barons and people of England did not like the tendency of the crown to royal absolutism. To what later came to be the divine right of kings. For a non-constitutional monarch. So they cornered King John and they said “we demand that you agree to our old duedal rights!” And those old feudal rights were embodied in magna carta and many of them came right down into the U.S. constitution -it would be interesting to trace some of them but we don’t have time.

Now, feudal Europe because it was Christian was hostile to the idea of sovereignty and all government was contractual or constitutional. Hence the idea of sovereignty is not at all present in medieval Europe. They believed that God alone is sovereign, therefore government cannot claim government, civil government. [00:14:24]

Now the minute the colonists came to the united states...[edit]

Now the minute the colonists came to the united states they insisted on a establishing what was a protestant feudal restoration. I go into this in “This Independent Republic” i have a chapter entitled Feudalism and Federalism as well as dealing with it elsewhere and I also deal with it my new book which just came out a week ago today “The Nature of the American System”. But they were concerned with making what had been the basic unit in feudalism; the county. Again, the basic unit of American civil government, and your criminal law and your civil law are basically county law. And your basic tax, the property tax, is the county tax. Because this is the basic unit of government! Not the the state and NOT the federal government. The county.

This is feudalism and this is federalism. But there is no sovereignty in this stretch. It is a system of governments, because we are not under one government, one civil government in the United States, we are under a system of governments! None of which have sovereignty. Sovereignty is reserved to God, and therefore God’s law is over all forms of government.

And this means constitutionalism. That man is under law, not under the state. So that governments of, by, and for the people does not mean popular sovereignty or the sovereignty of the state. Second, it does not mean democracy. The constitution is clearly anti-democratic, and there is one clause in the constitution which forever forbids the United States from becoming a democracy. They’ll never be able to change that. What is it? Well, the constitution says that “the senate, with representation of two senators from each state cannot be changed in it’s nature without the consent of every state.” Can you see the day when Nevada will say “Alright, we’ll be content with one senator, and California can have ten.” It’ll never happen! The consent of all the states is required to change the nature of the senate! [00:17:45]

So that by this simple clause the founding fathers...[edit]

So that by this simple clause the founding fathers put a permanent bar in the way of democracy. Moreover, as the federalist papers show they were very definitely anti democratic because they did not trust in man. Hamilton in number thirty-four of the federalist papers said “the fiery and destructive passions of war rage in the human breast with much more powerful sway than the mild and beneficent sentiment of peace. And that to model our political systems on speculations of lasting tranquility is to calculate on the weaker springs of the human character.” In other words, man’s a sinner and he cannot be trusted. “And if you’re going to assume that man is naturally good,” Hamilton said, “you’re in for trouble.

And Hamilton went on further to say that any form of government is limited in it’s ability to accomplish things, and he warned against -and I quote- “the {?} pursuit of a perfect plan. I never expect to see a perfect work from in-perfect man.” And again a very significant statement, the constitution therefore was premised on the basis that man is a sinner and that you’re never going to have a perfect world. But you CAN have a Godly society which is under law. It is the characteristic of every socialistic form of government is that it strives for perfection, not after law and order. When you strive for law and order you are protecting the good of the citizens. When you strive after perfection you are compelling everyone to fit into a mold which is established by a group of plans. The constitution was established in terms of “We the People” and Madison said the ultimate authority wherever the derivative may be found rests in the people alone. And the constitution set out to make the people strong and the state or the federal union strong. [00:20:33]

In other words, there is to be a strong civil government...[edit]

In other words, there is to be a strong civil government and a strong people because they felt that to have a weak federal union would make the people lost. To make the federal government strong but not to make the people strong in their rights was to make the federal government dangerous. So they took pains to make both strong, hence, to balance one against the other and meanwhile to have checks and balances within the constitution, the three branches of the federal government and the checks and balances one against the other; The state’s as it checked against the federal union, and the county’s as it checked against both.

There was therefore you see a balanced system of governments and of checks. Now this was taken very very seriously by the founding fathers. And we read for example, in the federalist papers, “Ambition must be made to counteract ambition.” In other words, men are sinners! The interest of the man must be connected with the constitutional rights of the place! In other words, land itself has constitutional rights, so that the reinforcements lean is clearly against. [00:22:28]

The founding fathers intended the constitutional rights...[edit]

The founding fathers intended the constitutional rights of the place! THis is in the federalist papers number fifty-one: “It may be a reflection on human nature that such devices should be necessary to control the uses of government.” But what is government itself but the greatest of all reflections on human government? If men were perfect you wouldn’t need a state. If men were angels no government would be necessary! If angels to govern men neither internal nor external controls on government would be necessary.

In framing a which is to be administered by men over men the great difficulty lies in this. You must first enable the government to control the governed and in the next place of obliged to control itself, a dependence on the people is no doubt the primary control on the government. But experience has taught mankind the necessity of auxiliary precautions. That’s pretty plain speaking! But it’s amazing how people will perversely insist on misreading this. [00:23:52]

I spoke at one university a couple of years ago with...[edit]

I spoke at one university a couple of years ago with two professors, and one of the professors from this area maintained that federalistic number 51 gave to the federal government unlimited power. Now HOW could you read unlimited power in that wording? This is very obviously hostile to democracy and democratic state and hostile to unlimited power, strictly limited power, anti-democratic, insisting of the supremacy of law because neither man nor the state can be trusted. And democracy means the sovereignty of man ,and faith in man, and trust in man. This is government of, by, and for the people, in terms of Godly law and order.

The equation of government with the state. We saw earlier that Murry said the United states has a structure of governments operating of different levels. And he referred here to Civil Government, local, county, state, federal. Each of these decentralized and characterized by checks and balances, and as I pointed out in this structure the county is the central and that branch of state which is closest to the people. And James M Beck, who was solicitor general of the U.S. in the 1920’s said the principal of local rule was basic to the framers of the constitution and he added that they had a contempt for mere phrase making as well as an adherence to realities. However. This different levels of government which makes us the American system goes deeper, far deeper than the federal, state, and county, levels of government. [00:26:04]

When we go back to the beginning as early as the ...[edit]

When we go back to the beginning as early as the 1630’s in Massachusetts’s, we find that when they talked about government they did not mean the state. And this was not meant until the end of the 18’th century. About the time of the constitutional settlement the language began to change. But when the people in colonial and also for a time in early constitutional America, spoke of government they mean the self government of the Christian man. This to them was government. And this is of course the basic government is it not? Every time you use the word government, and every time as you read these writers you will find the word government, they are talking about self government. Taking care of yourself, minding your own business. This for them was the first and the basic government of society.

The second basic government was the family and the family is the government is it not, and a very important government. The family is after all, man’s first school, his first church, his first stage. And it is an exceedingly important government.

Third, the church is a government, again an important government. And not only in its structure, officers, in the fact that you submit yourself to its discipline and its authority, but that it governs you by its teachings. For schools are an important area of government. And education is an all important area of government, one, by the way, which we have handed over lock stock and barrel to the state with devastating consequences! [00:28:41]

I was delighted this last week to pick up on the newsstand...[edit]

I was delighted this last week to pick up on the newsstand a science fiction magazine -now, I never read science fiction but this had an editorial that I wanted- the editor there has an editorial, it’s in the office 1965 issue of analog, and he defines education in four words. He said, “Education is simply slavery.” He goes on to say, not all slavery is bad, but a great deal of it is very good, many slaves in fact most slaves have been happy with their slave owners. And he said “What is education but to commit yourself, your whole will your whole life to somebody to be shaped!” That’s an important point. And if you’re going to turn yourself over to the state, the state is going to make you the slave of the state. That’s why I believe in independent Christian schools!

Because the child belongs to the parents not to the state. Now, to continue with our analysis of the forms of government; we have the self government of the christian man, we have the family, we have the church, we have the school, and fifth... businesses. Trade. Commerce. This is an important area of government! Every man who is in business is governed by the business, by the laws affectant on it, by the of supply and demand, by the requirements of his particular type of business. It’s a very real government, and it’s the most important government that most men have to deal with day after day. It governs not only their income but their time, and a great many other things in their lives. [00:31:00]

Six private associations are an important kind of government...[edit]

Six private associations are an important kind of government. Whenever we move into any circle we are governed by that circle. Every organization you belong to, the neighborhood you live in, the part of the country you are in, all these things govern you. Because you don’t want to be an odd ball, you want to conform within reason to the unity and communities do govern you to an amazing degree.

I was interested some years ago, when I went back East and I was in one community speaking, I was very pleased with one young minister I met and I commented to my host and hostess on what a very fine young man he was, and thoroughly conservative. “Well, yes,” they said. And I said, “Well, am I wrong? I found all his doctrines thoroughly conservative, and I found his political and economical ideas sound, I couldn’t detect anything radical or liberal in him.” “Well...” And I said, “Well what?!” “Well, he goes around during the week with colored shirts...” And in many parts of the East this constitutes radicalism, you see, and no doubt he became a conservative after a while! because he was new there, he’s come from California and he hadn’t learned yet to be governed by the expectations of the community. He didn’t conform. [00:32:52]

Now we are governed by these things far more than we...[edit]

Now we are governed by these things far more than we are often ready to admit, so that private associations are an very real government! And practice can include associations like this which govern you as individuals in your ideas and in your opinions and also governed by their influence on a community! And Alex DE. Tocqueville and his book “Democracy in America” written about a hundred and thirty some years ago, said that private associations were perhaps one of the most powerful forms of government in the United States if not the most powerful. [00:33:49]

Then seventh and finally you come to the state or civil...[edit]

Then seventh and finally you come to the state or civil government which is one form of government among many! I’d like to spend a whole morning just on this doctrine of government -and I’m just giving you a brief synopsis of a thought on it- because it’s important that this idea of government of the people, by the people, and for the people. But you can see what’s happened to our language! And it’s the deists at the end of the 18’th century who began this switch, because up until then people were talking about the state as civil government. They never talked about it merely as government. But little by little this change was introduced into the language and then finally into the state itself.

And what is happening today or what has happened is that civil government, the state says we are government, they have equated the state with government so now they insist that “We are THE government, we have a right to govern private associations. Who you integrate or segregate from. We have a right to govern your business, we are the government. And we have a right to govern your schools in fact we’ve taken them over! Your church -and it’s entered the church far more than you realize-, you’re family, and you.” The state now is government. But this was not so!

For the state to call itself government is to usurp all other area’s of government and enter or invade them. And the founding fathers felt so strongly about this that although by the doctrine of express powers the Bill of Rights was already in the constitution in state after state they said we will not ratify unless this is spelled out! What the Bill of Rights has spelled out is simply this, that the federal union has no business not only in the states and in the counties, but in your self government, in your family, in the government of your church, and in the government of your school, or of your business, or of your private associations. That’s the meaning of the Bill of Rights. It says that the Civil Government is just one area of governments among many.

So that to speak of governments of, by, and for the people, is to say that government does not mean the state. It is of the people basically, it is the people therefore who comprise the essence of government in all their various activities. Personal, familistic, religious, business, and private. [00:37:22]

Let us then analyse the relationship of people with...[edit]

Let us then analyse the relationship of people with the state from the time of the first continent of Congress through Lincoln. The declaration and resolves of the first continental Congress October 14, 1774, declared that the inhabitants of the English colonies in North America are entitled to life liberty and poverty and they have never seated to any foreign power whatever, a right disposed of either without their consent. And again on July 6, 1775, in a declaration of the causes and necessity of taking up arms they said, “Our forefathers inhabitants of the island of great Britain left their native land to seek far shores, a residence for civil and religious freedom.” The Declaration of Independence further spelt this out. The Declaration by the way is a feudal document! What does it say? The contract of constitution between the several states and the king of of England their feudal monarch is declared null and void because he has violated the contract of the Constitution. The king was claiming to be an absolute monarch and they said “Oh no you’re not! Every one of us are independent states, we have no connection with England, our only connection we have is that we share a common monarch, and you are our feudal monarch. This is the meaning of the Declaration. It has no legal significance if feudalism was not the case. But it had legal validity because their relationship by their charters with the king of England was strictly feudal. He had become an absolute monarch in England but he would never become an absolute monarch in the colonies. Parliament had taken over the royal absolutism and after the glorious revolution of 1688 was exercising it. But never in the colonies. Today, Parliament has the right to serve partly, Shawn Cross stated it before Parliament and I cite it in “This Independent Republic” that Parliament has the right and the absolute power to declare that all blue eyed babies be destroyed at birth because parliament has sovereignty!

In other words it has absolute power. But there is no sovereignty in the Constitution, the Declaration denied that there was any sovereignty in England. It was feudal, contractual and therefore null and void upon violation. And they declared that the relationship was null and void in the Declaration because of his repeated injuries and violations, both of their civil and not civil governmental powers. And that an arbitrary government had replaced the colonial {?} system of English laws. [00:41:16]

And the boundaries of this arbitrary government had...[edit]

And the boundaries of this arbitrary government had been enlarged with a design to introduce absolute rule into these colonies. They were fighting against the doctrine of sovereignty, they were fighting against absolutism. Well by way of reaction of course they created the weak state of the Articles of Confederation and they realized this was wrong and therefore they established the strong state of the federal union and the strong powers of the individuals. And Chester James Tent one of the great constitutional authorities about a hundred and thirty of forty years ago said “The rights of persons in private life are either absolute being such as belong to individuals in a single unconnected state or relative being those which arise from the cvil and domestic relations.”

This means in other words, that the state cannot touch the person. He has certain areas of governmental powers which are forever beyond the federal government or any civil government. Now this is what the great constitutional lawyer said about thirty years or so after the constitution was written- and there wasn’t a person living who disagreed with him. THey all assumed that to be the case. When did the change begin to take place? Well it was in the 1840’s and it was reflected in the party platforms, recently I sat down and read through all the party platforms through the Civil War of all the parties, the including the very minor parties. And it’s startling to see how after 1840 suddenly this change manifests itself. [00:43:30]

And where did it come from? Well the answer is also...[edit]

And where did it come from? Well the answer is also very very obvious. From unitarianism! Unitarianism was the first major and greatest continuing subversive movement in the united states. It was unitarianism that aimed at the state control of education and I deal with that in both in “The Nature of American System” and there are portions of it of course in Messianic character of American education. Unitarianism was aiming at two things; to destroy Orthodox Christianity and to introduce socialism. And to replace a distrust of man as state with a trust and to look to the state for the happy resolution of all man’s problems. ‘The state has all the answers’, this was their faith. And it’s interesting to see what happened! Immediately all the parties began by attacking the past. You would think that they would have looked back to the glorious period of the early years of the republic and said “We stand for what our forefathers stood for” but they began to kick them in the shins so to speak and the federalist party for example which it then did for about forty years!

Suddenly then the national democracy party in 1844 was attacked, and this is a curious thing. It meant simply the rejection of the past. And so in that platform of 1844, the creed and practice of federalism under whatever name or form is denounced as an imposter and is too monstrous for the popular credulity. [00:45:43]

Earlier they had begun by declaring their belief in...[edit]

Earlier they had begun by declaring their belief in the limited powers of governments derived solely from the constitution but now they began their platform in 1844 by placing their trust in man. In a clear reliance on the intelligence patriotism and discrimination justice of the American masses, if you please. They were talking about the masses and their trust in the masses. Not only so but they began to say by 1844 too that human brotherhood is a cardinal doctrine of true democracy. This was the liberty party and it went on to enunciate all the programs of world brotherhood and love and peace and light very quickly! Minor parties in particular, they were egalitarian and the liberal party program spoke of it’s doctrines as indispensably necessary for the salvation of the union of the states. Now by 1948, the parties have gone so far that the democratic platform -and mind you the democrats were then the conservatives- declared thus in their platform. “Resolve that in view of the recent development of the sovereignty of the people and their capacity and power for self government, which is frustrating thrones and erecting republics on the ruins of destitutism in the old world. We feel that a high and sacred duty is devolved with increasing responsibility upon the democratic party of this country as the party of the people to sustain and build among us constitutional liberty and equality for eternity” and so on. [00:48:25]

Now this is a startling fact...[edit]

Now this is a startling fact. They began by affirming their belief in the revolutions of 1848 in Europe. These were Marxist socialist revolutions! With all kinds of subversive and aluminise movements into New Englad and the conservative party begins by affirming it’s belief in those revolutions and using the slogan of the French Revolution! “Liberty for Eternity, Equality for Eternity as though this were constitutionalism. A tremendous change had taken place and the source of this change was unitarianism. The three saw [?] platform -by the way- on 1848 demanded the entrance of the federal government into new areas.

River and tar road improvements road construction and the like. Every president through the civil war with one exception believed that such a program was unconstitutional, but the free saw [?] on 1848 began to demand. Now in 1852 the democrats won with Franklin Pierce and were very very upset and disappointed with him as just about everybody in the country was. He was a political dark horse and he turned out to be a constitutionalist serf. And they didn’t even bother to run him again. They were glad to be rid of him when the four years were over! And all you hear about in the textbooks is what a weak, weak president Franklin Pierce was and Buchanan as well. Well, I believe that they were both great presidents and thorough going constitutionalists, that’s why they’re not popular in the history books. [00:50:37]

Peirce faced a tremendous barrage immediately, but...[edit]

Peirce faced a tremendous barrage immediately, but his purpose he said was to avoid disunion or civil war, and to pursue a course of strict constitutionalism. And he is called a failure because his administration's succeeded in doing this. He warned in his fourth annual message, December the 2’nd, 1856 and I quote, “extremes begat extremes” and he warned against indoctrination against in-reciprocal patriots and extension of federal powers as unconstitutional. And he said ”The several statists of the union are by force of the constitution co-equal in domestic legislative power. Congress cannot change a law of domestic relations in the state of main. No more can it in the state of Missouri. Any statute which proposes to do this is a mere nullity it takes away to right it confers not.”

Peirce then turned to the slavery question, and everybody was demanding that he do something to abolish slavery and they accused him of being pro slavery which he was not! Because he refused to allow any federal intervention into the question and he condemned the approach of federal intervention, and I quote: ”as contrary to all the fundamental doctrines and principles of civil liberty and self government.” Then he went on to analyse why he was against the federal government doing anything about it. He raised a question, and I think what he had to say here was so important that we need to analyse it with a special care. “Is it the fact, that in a the unsettled regions of the United States, if immigrations be let free to act in free to act in this respect for itself without legal prerogative on either side... [00:53:01]

….that slave labor with spontaneously go everywhere in preference of free labor! Is it the fact that the peculiar domestic institutions of the Southern states, because that’s relatively so much bigger that wheresoever an avenue is creeping open to all the world, they will penetrate the exclusion of those of the Northern states? Is it the fact that the former enjoyed compared with the latter such irresistibly superior vitality independent of time, soil, and all other accidental circumstances, has to be able to produce the supposed result in spite of the assumed moral and natural obstacles to its accomplishment and of the more numerous population of the Northern states.

The argument of those who applicate the enactment of new laws of restriction and condemn the repeal of old one in effect of {?} that their particular use of government had no self extending or self sustaining power of their own. And will go nowhere unless forced by act of Congress. And if Congress you could pause for a moment in the policy of stern coercion, if it ventured to try the experiment of leaving men to judge for themselves what institutions will best suit them, if it be not strained after perpetual legislative exertion on this point. If Congress proceeds thus to act in the very spirit of liberty it is at once charged with aiming to extensively labor to all the new territories of the United States.

Of course these imputations on the intentions of Congress in this respect conceives they were in prejudice and disseminated in passion are utterly destitute of any justification the nature of things. And contrary to all the fundamental doctrines and principles of such civil liberty and self government.” [00:55:09]

Now, what was Pierce saying? Very simply, this: You men claim you believe in liberty and its treatment, you don’t! You’re demanding that the federal government abolish slavery. In other words you say that the only answer is not a free answer but a statist answer! And you’re saying that slavery is economically superior to freedom! He said, I don’t believe it. And I don’t believe that a free competition between slavery and a free labor is going to do anything but destroy slavery. In other words, perpetual legislative exertions is not the answer. And it is a dangerous kind of answer. In other words, slave labor is not able to compete with free labor... Leave it alone!! Time will destroy it! Without destroying the constitution.

He was right. Already there were seminars writing that slavery was not economical, and although this is not in the textbooks, there was only one state in the South that was pro-slavery. South Carolina. In every other state they were against slavery they would liked to have abolished it as soon as they had an answer to what shall we do with the slaves. And if somebody had come up with the answer to that in Congress, slavery would have disappeared everywhere except in South Carolina overnight! Only one in eighteen owners in the South was a slave owner, and if you want to know where slavery was the most unpopular during the Civil War, go South. Study the Southern documents.

What? Well, the slaves stayed home and ate well while all the white men went to war and if that wasn’t unpopular you’re kidding yourselves! It was up North where some of the some of the slaves were fleeing that slavery was popular and the Northerners were bitterly anti-negro. They were not against slavery they were against dis-union. [00:58:03]

Slavery was increasingly in disfavor in the South.[edit]

Pierce was right. Slavery was increasingly in disfavor in the South. It came at this time within one vote of being abolished in Virginia. But Pierce’s answer was constitutional. His {?} was at he said in the very spirit of liberty! Economics he believed was an area of government. And a free economic order would abolish slavery. But to bring in the state into this was he thought to destroy constitutionalism. Well, the current was running against Pierce.

Meanwhile there was a young politician in Illinois who’s thinking it is very important to understand, because he too liked Pierce to depict as a dark horse. The Republican party was the party of the radicals, the statists. And the young Lincoln had been very much at many a point on their side, we don’t have time now to trace the history of his thinking, he had begun as a wig. He had been very much anti slavery, and for a time had made basic to his perspective not constitutionalism, but had continually taught in terms of the Declaration of Independence. Now this was a very significant fact because young Lincoln although a lawyer was confusing what was a statement of ideals in the beginning “All men are created equal”, and he misunderstood the sense in which it was said in his earlier writings with the legal facts.

And an ideal cannot be made into a legal fact, can it? But progressively Lincoln came to recognize that the statist answer was not the answer. And he came to oppose unlimited universal suffrage. Before he was candidate he came out clearly against abolitionists, against negro suffrage, what he DID favor was the universal right of South government. And he interpreted all men are created equal in this sense, that all men have the right to govern themselves. But he said this does not mean in our constitution of government that all men have the right to vote. [01:01:19]

As a result, when Lincoln was elected the South was...[edit]

As a result, when Lincoln was elected the South was desperately afraid of his party. Alexander Hamilton Stevens who became the five spread {?} of the confederacy, and who had been Lincoln’s closest friend in Congress, told Southerners, “Lincoln is a good conservative man now, You have nothing to fear from him.” The South however afraid of his party and had reason to fear his party! Lincoln as president was faced not only with the war but with also a war with his party.

Time is growing late and we don’t have time to analyse that, but he hoped first to re-settle Negro’s elsewhere. He made it clear that by people he meant the white citizenry, that created equal meant created equally free to govern themselves in their private affairs as free men. Personally but not necessarily politically. And it was in this sense that at Gettysburg he declared a proposition upon which this nation was established. It was precisely this. [01:02:55]

I express the hope that this nation under God[edit]

“I express the hope that this nation under God shall have a new birth of freedom and the government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.” South government was basic to his perspective. Lincoln was a disappointment to the radical Republicans and his plan for reconstruction, peaceful reconstruction, meant the immediate re entrance of the Southerners into the union. It meant a program for resettlement with the negro and legislation was passed to that effect- very few people realize this. And it was signed by Lincoln! To begin the resettlement.

But unfortunately the document had not been affixed with the seal at the time when it was passed and so it was null and void. And no legislation was subsequently re-passed because of his assassination. With his assassination however the radical Republicans quickly seized power. Johnson proved to be -this was Andrew Johnson of course- a thorough going constitutionalist conservative, but he did not have the power in Congress that Lincoln had. Enough of the Congressmen had come into office as a result of Lincoln’s election and therefore they were indebted to him for their re-election and he could control it. This was not the case with Johnson.

And so the civil rights bill of March 1866, was passed. Perpetual legislative exertion. Precisely that which Pierce had warned against became the order of the day. The civil rights bill of March 1866 gave the federal government vast powers over the states. And the federal government and presidents had powers upon discretion to intervene in the states if they shall advances had been or are likely to be committed against the prohibitions of this act. That’s a literal quotation. Not merely violations of the civil rights bill but if the federal government decided that anyone thought they’d like to commit it they had the right to move in. No crime was necessary for the president to invade an area, only his assumption that it was possible. And the federal government had the power to use all the military forces- and I’m quoting literally- to prevent the violation and enforce the due execution of this act. [01:06:28]

President Andrew Johnson vetoed the civil rights bill...[edit]

President Andrew Johnson vetoed the civil rights bill declaring it is another step, or rather stride, toward centralization and the concentration of all legislative power in the national government. What was planned at that time in the civil rights bill of 1866 was a major step towards what was to create a centralized, statist power in Washington. There is no mistaking it. The legislation was clear cut. Not even our civil rights bill of last year was as radical as the civil rights bill of 1866!

Johnson at the sacrifice of his own career stemmed the tide and Hayes completed the work. The country had been sacked by the forces of unitarianism, and after the civil war these forces made rapid inroads into the churches. By 1899 and 1900 it was so far gone that a book such as Reverend Charles Ferguson's “A Religion of Democracy” and it was hailed as a great book, I found no criticism of it in reading reviews of the period, and it went through many editions. What did the book say? Simply this: “The United States must work for a world of democracy, this is the true meaning of America. We must moreover have a world church, and who will belong to this church? Every man who is born. There can be no creed, no standard, no bar of admission to anyone.” The one world church and the one world state was clearly affirmed. And this was to be the great dream to be realized in the 20’th century. [01:09:10]

Now it is not surprising these ideas arose...[edit]

Now it is not surprising these ideas arose. They were commonplace from the enlightenment on, you can find them going so far back as Dante- who was an advocate of these things too, by the way. One of the great subversives whose face now adorns one of our postage stamps and he believed in communism, he affirmed it in the divine {?}, you weren’t taught this in school of course. But the fact that he is shocking was this, that by 1900 a book that he’d written advocating these ideas in the churches did not rise up and protest. It was assumed to be an marvelous and an idealistic expression of the American dream. [01:10:09]

The resistance has only come in since world war one...[edit]

The resistance has only come in since world war one, it has rapidly mounted since world war two. You represent part of that resistance because you truly that the government of, by, and for, the people begins with the self government of the Christian man. That to God alone belongs dominion. That sovereignty is an attribute of God and not man, and that government does not mean the state but the state has only a small area of government that has been called so. This is the American perspective, this is constitutionalism. It is now under attack.

But for the first time in many many years there is a major resistance, these deeply entrenched forces of subversion.I believe that the forces of subversion have never been more frightened than they are today. They have never had the resistance that they have had in recent years. I believe the resistance will continue to mount and the foundation of it will be Christian faith. The background of constitutionalism was a higher law concept, Christianity. It was unitarianism that subverted constitutionalism and Christianity. And it will only be if we undo that subversion by going back to Christian men and constitutionalism that this can be once again a truly independent republic.

Thank you.

[applause from the audience] [audio cut off]