Monday, October 28, 2013

What, You Say, Is Treason?

United States Constitution, Article III, Section 3:

     Treason against the United States shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No person shall be convicted of treason unless on the testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court.
     The Congress shall have Power to declare the Punishment of Treason, but no Attainder of Treason shall work Corruption of Blood, or Forfeiture except during the Life of the Person attainted.
The President of the United States of America singlehandedly destroys 800 years of Western legal tradition - 12-31-11

     The word treason has been bandied about lately quite a great bit, and not least by the once known as “tolerant” “liberal” class of American politics. As defined above, treason consists only of taking up Arms in War against the United States or manifestly helping those with whom it is at war.
     The word "traitors" has thus recently been thrown at Edward Snowden, as well as the Congress of the United States itself, in its failure to pass a meaningful and legally binding budget. As though a general disagreement in the policy of the US was ever enough of itself to make one a traitor!
     That the sobriquet was foisted upon Mr. Snowden after plainly embarrassing the US government in the unconstitutional act of spying against innocent citizens, with neither substance nor charge, reeks of the type of sanctimonious partisanship germane to BOTH major US political parties at this stage of the game. Mr Snowden has sought only to make the public aware of its government's actions- he has not traded information with foreign powers (the precise definition of espionage, with which he has been charged in absentia) only with the free press (such that still is) and has gained no personal favor or reward by his having been accepted for political asylum in a nation once long feared as the US’s largest military threat. A nation which has, by the way, become itself a free and democratic nation.
     But Mr. Snowden is getting his due, for nearly double as many Americans see him as a patriot than call him “traitor.” Those who claim he IS traitor perhaps bask in their own love of authoritarianism- or in an all-enveloping, cradle-to-grave government as comforter.
     Yet, the founders of this nation knew so much better than to trust government. They set up a Constitution for a State which by its very nature was delimited in the powers it might claim over any individual.
     And why should the entire Congress be called traitor, other than that just one Congress ago, they approved the indefinite detention of US Citizens, and a president who claimed he was opposed to just such a policy signed it into law? Are Americans so afraid of living without their government that they absolutely could not do to live without it for one or two weeks? Perhaps the latest government shutdown proves that. Perhaps there really is a segment of the public who would be completely at sea without their government to hold them by the hand and lead them through the wilderness.
     Maybe Americans have become complacent and willing to grant their government new unconstitutional powers over them, preferring Security to their God-granted Liberty. Perhaps they would prefer a society where government can inflict a mandatory program- (any mandatory programs at all!) over taking care of themselves- to actually living freeing the state of Liberty which was, again, Creator-granted!
     I am absolutely and resolutely opposed to this government making anything mandatory absolutely at all. That goes for everything from mandatory military service, to mandatory civil service, from medical care, to income tax. I owe this government absolutely nothing BUT my income tax. If only that by this income they have stolen from me before I even handle the proffertory note of a paycheck, they are able to guarantee to me the rights granted by the Constitution. But! The government did not give to me my life. They did not give me my liberty, nor my conception of happiness. These came from the Creator and exist within me as an individual prior to ANY claim of a State upon them. Compulsion under this Constitution is antithetical to its purposes, from the start. If there is not freedom NOT to participate then there is not freedom of choice, the very hallmark of freedom.
     Love of any country cannot be in any way qualitatively equated with love of its government. This is the problem facing our society today- which government’s propaganda would choose to confine the rational thought of the individual to consider otherwise. It’s said, “we only have our freedom because thousands died in battle for it.” Bullshit! As the Declaration of Independence states quite plainly, Liberty is a self-evident and inherent right of the living, as life is, granted self-evidently, by our Creator. (However or whatever you might conceive this to be, be you Deist or Atheist.) And loss of liberty can only be justified under our constitution as taken- under the due process of law.
     It really appears that for the past seventy years or so, Americans have been fighting, not for their country, but for their government. It even appears now, that, what they are fighting for isn’t the freedom Americans long knew (and took for granted) but a freedom subject to the whims of what the government- or at the least, the Executive Branch- says it is. This present president apparently only studied the Constitution in order to learn what he ought to most effectively destroy of it- Amendments I, IV, and V are particularly endangered under his acts and his policies, and defiance of his programs is perhaps the only rational resistance one can offer. Certainly the power to impeach him still resides within the Congress.
     But for all who care to take offs with one party or the other in Congress, they would do well to realize this Congress was elected, just as was this President. Adolf Hitler was freely elected as well, and his laws approved, legally, by a duly elected government. But just as Adolf Hitler’s laws led inexorably toward the loss of freedom for the individual in his society and eventually transgressed the moral imperatives of the international community, so this president’s national security apparatus has come to abrogate the standards of the international community- as well as his country’s own Constitution- in its overweening surveillance of foreign leaders, its executions sans due process of innocent civilians- both American and otherwise- its determination to overwhelm all resistance to the creation of a worldwide surveillance sate- under the ultimate accountability of No One- in the name of some Pax Americana. “American exceptionalism” indeed appears to be a “figa tu!” at every other nation on the face of this earth. And must have rights to accuse it, as I see fit, to dissent from its departures from justice and international law, and insist on accountability of its leaders to its people. If I must love my country, then I must also despise the actions and policy of my government.
     The notion, propounded in the John Kennedy inaugural address, “ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can bla bla bla bla bla…” is nothing more nor less than bruiting a prescription for servitude and sheepledom. Since that speech Americans have been lulled into believing that fighting in the armed forces means fighting for their country. Its meant as an invitation to the young to join in as willing cannon fodder, for the middle aged to act as slaves to a govern god, and the elderly to give their last breaths in defense of a fortress built of cannonballs. High time it is for Americans to demand of their government to restore the “inalienable rights” which were enshrined in the first ten Amendments of the Constitution. If that is too much to ask of this government then it, in and of itself, deserves to fall, of its own inability to guarantee the survival of those rights once so cherished, now so ripely despoiled.

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