Columnist, Alan Caruba, wrote a recent article entitled, “A Whiff of Revolution,” in which he generally describes the people of the United States as being fed up and disgusted with federal politics. Caruba rightly compares the actions by the federal government (particularly under Obama) to the actions by Great Britain just before the America Revolution, stating that “[i]t is the antithesis of a nation of laws, a republic.” Caruba predicts that Americans will eventually take this matter of freedom back into their own hands once again:
“If, between now and the midterm elections, the President and Congress pass the Cap-and-Trade Act and an amnesty for illegal aliens, I SUSPECT THAT SOME AMERICANS MAY NOT BE CONTENT TO SIT BY WHILE STATES AND THE COURTS WORK THEIR WAY WITHIN THE CONSTITUTION. They will sense—and rightfully so—a despotism never before associated with the presidency.” (emphasis added)
Caruba makes some valid points in his article and accurately describes a feeling of revolution prevalent throughout the country. However, I believe that a more thoughtful analysis must be attributed to what a real and successful revolution will compose.
First, I must observe what I believe to be an underlying presumption in Caruba’s prediction of a revolution by the PEOPLE THROUGHOUT (all of) THE UNITED STATES. I have to assume Caruba’s prediction of revolution takes place on a nation-wide scale (in all fifty states) because he references “Americans” in general and simply leaves out the notion of “citizens of individual States.” To me, Caruba portrays a revolution where by the union of fifty states stays intact.
Caruba seems to indicate that if Obama signs into law certain bills (i.e. amnesty, Cap-and-Trade, etc.—a sort of “crossing the line” point) then the people will instinctively or cognizantly recognize they are under despotism and will respond accordingly, even without consideration of their State government. I do not share this belief. Rather, I believe freedom’s revolution will comprise of certain regions of the country under the leadership of certain states.
That the people (in whatever percentage is necessary to effectuate principles of freedom) in all fifty states will recognize that they are under despotism is simply not true. Just take a look at the last election and see who voted for the Obama—millions! Count these people out of any revolution movement against a system that they not only support, but love.
On top of that, many millions of these people receive direct benefits from the federal government and the system it has created: military, education, financial institutions, employment, welfare, grants, contracts, etc. With this direct interest, a large number of Americans will not participate in a revolution whatsoever. Thomas Paine recognized the same during 1776 as to the types of people who remained loyal to Great Britain:
“INTERESTED MEN, who are not to be trusted; WEAK MEN who cannot see; PREJUDICED MEN who will not see; and a certain set of MODERATE MEN, who think better of the European world than it deserves…[The moderate men] will be the cause of more calamities to this continent than all the other three.” (all-caps emphasis added)
Those classes of people exist today in large part, and we see its effect today. Immediately in observation, we evidently find that a large number of coastal-west, mid-north and north-east states will not participate in freedom’s revolution, because they will not consider themselves to be under any sort of tyranny or despotism. They prefer (whether knowingly or not) socialism, big government, elimination of state powers, status quo, etc. These states would likely even preclude the possibility of a constitutional amendment some are advocating to “roll back” the federal government.
Even among the “Tea Party” movement, the idea of revolution is not altogether shared. Many of them simply believe that we should “vote the bumps out” or should use the (federal) court system to “regain freedom.” This mentality shows that they are federal-government-risk averse, likely and largely because they either believe that the federal government is “too strong” to resist (they say, “look at the Civil War: the federal government will crush our attempts to secede or resist them!”); that the federal laws are in fact supreme over state laws and thus, we must change the federal government to restore freedom; or that the union must be saved at all costs and so any State that resists and acts individually upon its own sovereignty is foolish.
People who believe that freedom must be obtained through the federal system causing their demise either will not likely consider themselves to live in despotism and revolt accordingly, or will not consider resisting the federal government individually or with a “mob of seditionists.”
I believe Caruba’s prediction involves a critical oversight regarding the state governments’ role in the revolution through its independent political power. One of the reasons that the founding generation insisted that the States retain their borders, integrity and a large portion of their sovereignty was to be able to resist federal encroachment and to govern themselves–even without the federal government.
Human observation, experience and nature confirmed the need for a Constitutional Confederated Republic to maintain smaller and more numerous and individual territories to most effectively secure freedom for each body-politic. Each state served as an entity unto itself to accomplish the ends of government.
So, what if a group of people live in a state where they have to contend not only with the federal government but also with their state government? What will those people do who live in a state where its state government assists the federal government in rounding up all those who have “revolted” against the federal government? In such a State, what you mostly have are a bunch of so-called seditionists who (to that State and the federal government) have created an insurrection, rebellion or unlawful overthrow of government and who now have no support from any internal government entity with the organization, force and rule of law for its citizenry, police and state guard/militia. For those people, mere survival would be the focus, not freedom.
Even if a state possesses people who understand they are living in despotism, they will likely be so overwhelmed and overcome by the state and federal government–not to mention the other people who view them as “terrorists”–that they will not be able to do what Caruba suggests: that is, forget their state government and go forth with revolution.
Compare that scenario with people who live in a state where the state government not only supports the revolution but also participates in and leads it. Caruba seems to suggest that there will come a time (in the near future) where the court systems will not be the way to go, and that the States will be wasting their time by using the court system as a tool of resisting tyranny. He is correct. I believe we are essentially at that point already. Something more is needed to protect freedom. Are all of the states doing that “something more”? Absolutely not.
A good indicator of which state governments will or may participate in the revolution is to observe which states are proactively resisting the federal government now through their own independent political process. Consider what some of the states are proactively doing to resist federal encroachment. Consider the very character, nature and mentality of the state government systems currently in place to get a better feel for which state governments will remain Tories and which ones Revolutionaries.
Arizona: passed a bill declaring that Obama must prove that he is constitutionally eligible to be President before Arizona will put him on the ballot in 2012; signed into law its illegal immigration bill, which provides for the internal protection and integrity of its borders, culture, way of life and rule of law by enforcing state laws against illegal immigration. Certainly, Oklahoma and Texas should follow course.
Montana: led the way by signing into law the Firearms Freedom Act, which expressly exempts certain gun manufacturing and purchasing within the state from federal regulations. The states that have followed: Idaho, Wyoming, South Dakota, Utah, Arizona, and Tennessee.
Idaho: expressly exempted its citizens from having to comply with the federal health care law under protection and sanction of state law. Virginia and Utah also signed into law this same resistance to the federal health care law. Other states are working on it.
Oklahoma: among other federal-resistance laws introduced and passed, to introduce a bill to create a State Militia for the expressed purpose of resisting the federal government and “securing a Free State.”
Alaska: passed a law denouncing and resisting the National ID Act which requires every person in the United States to possess a federal identification for social and governmental purposes. Alaska is joined by other states such as Arizona, Georgia, Louisiana, Montana, New Hampshire, Oklahoma, South Carolina, etc.
One need not be a political scientist, sociologists or philosopher to understand that the spirit of revolution is not a national matter, but is a state matter; that the spirit of revolution is not prevalent in every state, but only some states; and that it will not likely be successful in every state without the support of that state government. It is for this reason (in part) that would-be tyrants and are-tyrants hate the division of power, the independent and separate sovereignty of states and decentralization. It is for this reason that we should love it.
If this upcoming revolution is just a bunch of individuals chaotically doing who knows what, under the command of God knows who, having to fight state and federal tyrants as well as neighbors, then the centralists/nationalists/globalists have accomplished what they have attempted to accomplish since the tower of Babel by stripping away from the independent and several bodies-politic the power and means by which they secure their own freedom, liberty and rights.
However, I do not believe that is an accurate description of what the upcoming revolution will be. Freedom’s revolution will consist of individual states that understand what freedom and self-government are and what it means to protect that foundation.
I too smell the whiff of revolution, but the smell leads me on the trail of certain states.
 Alan Caruba, A Whiff of Revolution, CanadaFreePress, (April 26, 2010), found at http://canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/22454
 Thomas Paine, Common Sense, Ed. Mark Phillip, (Oxford, NY, Oxford University Press, 1995) 25.
 Daniel Tencer, Arizona ‘birther’ bill forces Obama to show birth certificate, The Raw Story (April 20, 2010) found at http://rawstory.com/rs/2010/0420/arizona-bill-force-obama-show-birth-certificate/
 Randal C. Archibold, Arizona Enacts Stringent Law on Immigration, New York Times (April 23, 2010) found at http://www.nytimes.com/2010/04/24/us/politics/24immig.html
 Alex Newman, States, Legislators, and Citizens Resist ‘ObamaCare’, The New American (March 22, 2010) found at http://www.thenewamerican.com/index.php/usnews/health-care/3176-states-legislators-and-citizens-resist-obamacare
 Bill Waugh, Some Oklahomans want a state militia to resist Washington, ONDeadline, (April 12, 2010) found at http://content.usatoday.com/communities/ondeadline/post/2010/04/some-oklahomans-want-a-state-militia-to-resist-washington-/1
 Real ID Nullification Legislation, http://www.tenthamendmentcenter.com/nullification/real-id/