A Redress of Grievances: Part II

by Shtuey at Oh…My Valve!

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. ~ Constitution of the United States; Amendment I

First, let us be absolutely clear.  Congress cannot, in any way, hinder, impede, or otherwise sanction against the right to a redress of grievances.  The Supreme Court has ruled that this applies to the Executive and Judicial branches as well.  In addition the SCOTUS has also ruled that the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment applies all First Amendment limitations to all State governments, and all local governments.  In my opinion, if any branch of local, state, or national government moves to abridge this right that body of governance should be immediately dissolved.

What is this redress of grievances?  Let’s define it.

To petition means to, “make or present a formal request to (an authority) with respect to a particular cause,” according to the New Oxford American Dictionary.

Redress: to “remedy or set right (an undesirable or unfair situation).”

With these definitions in mind, my interpretation of this clause is as follows: It is the indefeasible, unassailable right of Americans to demand that government, be it local, state, or national, correct such wrongs as are brought before it by said petitions.  This is not optional.  The government is constitutionally bound to bring remedy to such a petition.  Failure to do so is tantamount to dissolving the compact between the governed and the government, which rules only by our consent.

To my mind the list of grievances to be brought against all three branches of the government are far too long to be remedied in toto.  I therefore contend that the only remedy that can be brought to bear is the resignation of our elected officials: the Congress, the President.  On what basis do we make this demand?  On our nation’s Magna Carta:

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men [and all women] are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.

Does anyone deny that we have suffered a long train of abuses?  Have we not been taxed without our consent?  Have we not become subjugated by a central banking system that operates outside the purview of the Constitution, that is beholden to no one?  Is this not financial despotism?  Have we not witnessed gross violations of the Constitution by our elected officials across many administrations?  Has our right to privacy, and protection from warrantless searches been violated by the President and Congress?  Has the federal court not abdicated its duties by failing to strike down the warrantless wiretapping scheme as a violation of the Fourth Amendment?  These are the reasons we fought Britain for our independence.  These acts were intolerable then.  They are intolerable now.  Allowing any further abuses will only lead to despotism and tyranny.  To whom can we turn to remedy this situation if not We The People?

The time has come for one unified petition for redress with only one remedy.  The resignation and replacement of our elected officials and finally, Supreme Court.

Your assignment: write your own petition listing the violations that have been committed by the federal government against you.  Post them here.  And let us define the terms and mechanics involved in replacing the Congress.  Engage in this process and end this nonsense.

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27 Comments

Filed under by Shtuey

27 responses to “A Redress of Grievances: Part II

  1. lililam

    shtuey- what heirarchy will move in in such a vacuum? I agree that all of these bodies deserve ejection, but with what structure will it be replaced? As I cannot see how a vacuum can be a safe alternative, even on a limited basis, although I am sure that many alternatives would be acceptable and preferable even within the limits of my imagination. I think if things continue as they are, an easy argument for impeachment will be imminent and doable, but some emergency tactic will be needed to bypass the rules of succession. How do you see a complete revocation of the “powers that be” to work in practical terms for us right now?

  2. First things first. I think by writing this post I may be a domestic terrorist, at least in Alabama, Missouri, and Virginia. Apparently reading the Constitution can now qualify you. I suppose that by this definition any and all law enforcement, military, and elected officials also qualify as they are all sworn to protect and defend the Constitution. I guess there were a few people asleep at the switch when they dreamed that nonsense up.

    Now, in answer to your question lililam; we can phase out the current Congress by calling elections. Resignations will be effective immediately upon certification of election results and swearing in. In the meantime, I would suggest the imposition of a restriction of powers so that the Congress can only perform functions necessary to the functioning of the government. The day to day functions are largely executed by bureaucrats; the collection of taxes, government regulatory agencies, etc, function independently of Congress. Congress passes laws. Congress does not execute or enforce them. That is the President’s job.

    In the interim, functions like declaring war, etc would continue. The passing of legislation would be suspended. Most people fail to realize that our elected officials do very little in this regard. There are hearings of various kinds, committee meetings, but the passing of laws…how much work are these clowns really doing? They’ve been busy bees lately trying to ram through the Pampers agenda so it seems they are doing a lot. Are we really going to go down the tubes if Congress doesn’t spend time bickering? I doubt it.

    The structure of our government is not the problem; three branches of government. The problem is us. We allowed the government to overstep its bounds. Term limits should be imposed. Having career politicians leads to much of the abuses we are currently experiencing.

    Your concerns are not unwarranted. Perhaps attrition through term limits is what is required, with the creation of a fourth branch of government consisting of representatives from each state with direct oversight of their Senators and Representatives to prevent the passage of laws over the will of their constituents. The majority of Americans were against the stimulus bill, and the rest of the crap rammed through so far. It is the abuse of power, and the ignoring of our voice that is the problem. Ultimately, eliminating these issues is the purpose behind this. I’m just getting the conversation going.

  3. lililam

    Yes, I do agree with your claim that the nitty gritty of day to day life is handled by bureaucrats and that occurred to me while writing. It’s like when your boss is on vacation, stress usually dissipates and more work can be done in their absence with enhanced problem solving. Much of the importance of the executive and legislative branches are over-inflated by the media. We’ll see, it is a beginning of a conversation.

  4. astra14

    “First things first. I think by writing this post I may be a domestic terrorist, at least in Alabama, Missouri, and Virginia.”

    This is the part that gets scary now. Just know that if you get sent to the camps you won’t be going alone. The Republicans sent me a survey – don’t ask me why because I’m not a Republican – but I answered it anyway. I was honest and where they had fill in the blanks I put down “Restore the Constitution”. We who believe in the Constitution set forth by our Founding Fathers and which has been defended by our military – one my ancestors fought for our Independence and many of my family members have served in the military – are on our way to being declared Terrorists! How the hell did that happen?!!! It’s bad enough being ignored by our Congressmen, but now if you bring up the Constitution – which gives us our rights and freedoms and is the foundation of this country – you are now a terrorist!!! I’m all for term limits for our Congressmen, but I don’t see it happening under our current leadership. All we can do is try putting in politicians who are not part of the status quo and willing to put this country back on track. The other problem is the sheeple…those wonderful people who don’t think and they don’t want to exert themselves thinking, which is one of the reasons how we ended up with the current President.

    We do need these conversations, but we also need to see the faces of true leaders we can trust to bring this country back in line with our Constitution and We The People. I don’t care if these leaders are third party candidates or independents. I have no faith in either the Dems or Repubs – they’re basically the same party at this point anyway…corrupt…and I don’t trust anyone they put forward at this point being any different.

  5. biting the bullet here for a prophetic writer…you.

    what is your proposal for overhauling the broken system? how are we citizens going to affect change when the truly worthy people rarely run for office? how do we sway the masses when they revere the “cool” rather than the righteous? if you believe that government is controlled by forces other than what we “see”…(and i do), then how will our voices override years of plotting to get to where we are now? we are ruled by despots with money, untouchable by the ordinary citizen.
    devil’s advocate role play. someone please devise a plausible answer, a doable mission, one that will supersede our mere disgust and result in tangible action.
    the valiant effort to procure the award for the dem nomination to its rightful winner did not work. i respectfully, and sincerely ask….now what?

  6. Mirlo

    There is a relatively easy way to solve many problems we experience with politicians who do not have the benefit of the sovereign in mind, but their own and the one of their donors:
    All campaign money should be financed publicly, from city councels, to Mayors, to Governors, State and National Reps, Senators to the Presidency, without exception. No private injections from the candidates should be allowed, thus enabling the election of people not only from the wealthy “cast”. Multimedia should be obliged to give all candidates the same amount of time/space for advertising, free of charge. With the same amount of funds available, truly better candidates, with more creativity would have an oportunity to prevail, instead of the richer ones, or those who will be puppets to the interests of their big donors. They would then be beholden to the sovereign, not to any corrupt entities.

    All we need is the political will to change this.

    The next step would be to find a way to make it unattractive for private Moguls to own the multimedia and thus withdraw power from them to influence masses. That will take some ingenious thinking. Anyone?

  7. helenk

    I am in tears today.
    While the American public refused to pay attention both house of backtrack’s congress passed the GIVE act. The kids and senior citizens just got sold down the river.
    No one fully knows the consequences of this act.
    God Help This Country

    WOMEN WITH INTELLIGENCE AND EXPERIENCE,MEN WHO SUPPORT THEM AND COUNTRY BEFORE PARTY ALWAYS

    PUMAS,BUBBAS,EQUALISTS AND THOSE PEOPLE RULE

  8. while i deplore the g.i.v.e. act for a myriad of reasons, we have to keep perspective now. the mandatory aspect is now being questioned, and *that* is the reprehensible part of it. furthermore, g-d forbid these heathens enforce this on our children, the totality, to my understanding, will be 250,ooo people.
    we’ve had similar programs such as vista in the past…what we fear most is the fraud and his fraud string pullers behind it, not so much the act.

  9. I have been mulling over solutions to our current situation; namely that our federal government has violated the limits imposed on it by the Constitution. In the end, the possibility that the Resident is not eligible to serve is small potatoes when compared to the violation of the Fourth Amendment as represented by FISA and warrantless wiretapping. It was ordered by the last President, it is continuing now. It was sanctioned by the Congress, and the federal court has not struck it down.

    The language regarding the eligibility of the President is ambiguous at best. Though I agree with John Adams that it is our indefeasible right to know the character of the people holding elected office, particularly the President, it is unarticulated in the Constitution. That being the case, it is vital that the Supreme Court hear the eligibility cases and, in my opinion, force the Resident to produce legal and true documentation of his eligibility, college transcripts, medical records, visa records, etc. But from the standpoint of a well defined boundary that the federal government absolutely may not cross, the language of the Fourth Amendment regarding the curtailing of warrantless searches is unambiguous.

    The tax burden that has been levied on us by virtue of the debt created by TARP, and the “stimulus” package, when the overwhelming majority of Americans objected to these programs, is nothing less that taxation without our consent.

    The Federal Reserve, a central bank that we have no control over, is colluding with the Congress and the Treasury, which will lead either to massive inflation, or the collapse of the dollar, leaving us wholly and totally at the mercy of China (PROC being the only check against the BO budget plan at the moment. If they see the budget proposal as being something that represents financial irresponsibility they could choose to stop buying our debt. What happens then? Do they start calling in the debt? Does the United States government cede American financial and real estate interests to China?).

    As to what we should do; I don’t claim to have all the answers. That’s the main reason this blog exists. But I do believe the answer lies in creating a scenario that puts direct oversight of our elected officials in our hands.

    First; term limits must be imposed. If the Congress refuses to table the issue we force them out through voter attrition; a mass movement to vote against all incumbents. The other option is for us to exercise our right to peaceably assemble in our nation’s capital with the expressed purpose of demanding a redress of grievances, and effectively shutting down the Congress until these matters are resolved.

    I suggest that we alter the oath of office for our elected officials so that they not only swear to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States, but also swear that no action taken by them will act against the Safety and Happiness of the American people, and that they will take no action that violates the unalienable rights of the American people.

    I further suggest that every state have an elected committee of citizens, representing each Congressional district within the state (or county if the government takes action to gerrymander districts to create a situation that favors one party over another), to serve as a body of oversight to determine if this oath is being upheld by their representatives. If a Representative/Senator is deemed to be in violation, the citizen representatives of that state would bring articles of impeachment to the citizens of that Representative’s district or Senator’s state. After being presented with the evidence the citizens vote to impeach or not. If the verdict is impeachment, a special election is called to replace the Representative. The full assembly of all 50 states would hear such matters regarding the President.

    I also agree that public financing of elections is essential. The Liar in Chief took millions from corporations, the wives of federal registered lobbyists, the firms they work for, etc while day after day lying that he was not taking money from corporate interests, lobbyists and pacs (that’s not even mentioning the illegal overseas contributions he received).

    There must be an absolute and complete ban on any monies that are not part of a comprehensive public election financing system. Aside from eliminating a major source of corruption, and the co-opting of our interests in favor corporate interests, it would mean that our elected officials would not spend voluminous amounts of time fundraising, while ignoring the voice of the citizens who elected them in the first place (this is obviously aided by the imposition of the aforementioned term limits).

    The thrust of any reform must not simply be based on limiting federal power to the guidelines of the Constitution, it must involve increased participation of the citizens who grant the power to the government to operate in the first place. I believe that our low voter turnout, and incredible ignorance as to the most basic functions of our republic, rests in poor education, and the collective societal notion that it doesn’t matter what we say because the government isn’t listening.

    If We The People possessed the direct power of impeachment over Congress and the President I think a lot more people would pay attention, and would be more willing to be involved. It would also be a major incentive for our officials to exercise our will and protect our interests.

    I don’t consider these ideas the sum total, or the absolute answer. It’s just a jumping off point.

    Thoughts?

  10. “If We The People possessed the direct power of impeachment over Congress and the President I think a lot more people would pay attention, and would be more willing to be involved. It would also be a major incentive for our officials to exercise our will and protect our interests.”

    This, in my opinion, is a light bulb moment. There are two factors that gauge the way an elected official will vote. One, money, usually by nefarious means. Two, political expediency aka, re-election.
    Should there be “virtual” firing squads of voters willing to in essence, grade their representatives effectiveness, thereby rendering the official jobless or allowed to continue in office, perhaps this complete lack of oversight by the populace would cease.
    Ok Shtuey, beautiful. Now, since I can’t imagine a scenario by which this will be implemented, I invite someone else to do so.

    Such a good idea.

  11. Mirlo

    Now we are cooking!

  12. Mirlo

    Your scenario, Shtuey, to put direct oversight into our hands includes, at this moment, the following points:

    1. term limits and/or demand redress grievances
    2. alter/ammend oaths of office
    3. Body of oversight
    4. public financing of elections
    5. increase participation of citizens

    All these points should be submitted, one by one, to thorough thought by as many people as possible, not only in this blog, but among our friends in dialogues, discussed here and scrutinized (advanatges, disadvantages, loopholes etc).

    All points should then be worked into a comprehensive concept and given to professionals (constitutional/legal, political, etc) for examination and, if necessary, correction.

    We should then examine the practical steps for implementation, i.e. build a grassroot movement (that’s where this must come from, because obviously none of the establishment will be in favor of this), find more support and finally move on to the real action.

    Not something that can be archieved today or tomorrow, but we can expect things to get much worse, which will fuel the willingness of masses of people to participate in such a movement and represent the “soil” for growth.

    A well thought out and comprehensive plan and concept is essential for succeding in such an endeavour, which might then hit like an earthquake.

    That’s just my 2 cents

  13. Sandra, CA

    The tax burden that has been levied on us by virtue of the debt created by TARP, and the “stimulus” package, WHEN THE OVERWHELMING MAJORITY OF AMERICANS OBJECTED TO THESE PROGRAMS, is nothing less that taxation without our consent.

    YES.

    while i deplore the g.i.v.e. act for a myriad of reasons, we have to keep perspective now. the mandatory aspect is now being questioned, and *that* is the reprehensible part of it.

    I disagree. There is no assurance that wording won’t be added back in with an amendment. It’s not like the legislators do what the citizens want.

    See H.R. 1444, Congressional Commission on Civic Service Act: “Whether a workable, fair, and reasonable mandatory service requirement for all able young people could be developed […] The means to develop awareness of national service and volunteer opportunities at a young age by creating, expanding, and promoting service options for primary and secondary school students and by raising awareness of existing incentives.”

    Why is a NATIONAL service component for elementary and secondary schools even being considered? What are these incentives they speak of? After TARP and the Stimulus Bill, do you really think these people have the best interests of citizens in mind?

    Shtuey, for my petition I would submit what you wrote: “Does anyone deny […] if not We the People?”

    Mirlo, your enumerating the points makes them very clear. Another one to perhaps add: Part-time Congress. I noticed reading through House bills that they waste a lot of time naming buildings.

  14. “It’s not like the legislators do what the citizens want.”

    Which is why we are here, correct?
    It is my opinion that national service will not become mandatory, just as none of the similar programs before it did not. There is a history for these proposals.

    As for taxation without consent, when have we the people ever given our consent to be taxed? Is this a new concept?

    The proposals that Shtuey outlined are succinct. We as a citizenry need oversight since WE put those heathens in office.

    There are priorities, Sandra. We each have our own agenda but the collective ideology is what matters here.

  15. Mirlo

    Sandra
    in Switzerland they have part time congress, they congregate for 2 weeks 4 or 5 times a year (or similar) Members have to have another part time job which makes them susceptable to vote in the interest of whom they are beholden of. Just something to consider and think about; how could it be avoided?

  16. Not all the mandatory language was removed from the GIVE Act. It is still mandatory for students in public schools to me indoctrinated. They are required to take a class that indoctrinates them in giving to their country through Bambi’s BS!

  17. astra14

    My problem with the GIVE Act was the fact the word “mandatory” was in there at all in the original House draft. I’m a little confused about where the GIVE Act stands now. I’m seeing across the various blogs there is a House passed version and a Senate passed version, but no links where I can read each separate version and if the word mandatory appears in either one right now, or if there is a “hint” that volunteering is mandatory.

    The fact is the government should not be making “volunteering” or community service mandatory. I’m not linking volunteering to help people with the military draft here. To me they are two different subjects because one concerns national defense and the other is just helping out others in the name of good will. For the government to create a law stating that it’s citizens – no matter what age – have to provide mandatory service or the government is seeking in the future to make this a mandatory service is wrong as it violates the basis of the Declaration of Independence:

    “We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

    My definition of Liberty does not include Mandatory service. That includes the military draft even though I could see a need for it if the USA is attacked and we need troops to defend our country and there are not a lot of volunteers. But Mandatory service to me is in violation of our right to Liberty.

    And we definitely need to get term limits on our Congressmen! And take away on power from the cabinet which they should not be entitled to.

  18. From the Misc. section, #6104: (6) Whether a workable, fair, and reasonable mandatory service requirement for all able young people could be developed, and how such a requirement could be implemented in a manner that would strengthen the social fabric of the Nation and overcome civic challenges by bringing together people from diverse economic, ethnic, and educational backgrounds.

    Note: “could be”
    I cannot find any other words that signify mandatory service.

    What this community organizer wants to do is take the kids from reasonably comfortable backgrounds and put them in economically depressed areas ( which are now increasing due to the depression, not recession) thereby allowing them to assist in shooting hoops, helping with homework, serving in soup kitchens, and last but not least, getting stabbed. am i being racially insensitive? no, just speaking the truth. sorry, liberals.

    But to be fair, service can be accomplished through many other means as outlined in the bill.
    I *still* do not see anything yet which shows me MANDATORY, without a doubt, must serve obahitler and Acorn.
    When and if I do, I’ll take comfort in the fact that only 250k will “have” to participate and get compensation for doing so.
    Take heed, Resident…we’ve got our passports ready.

  19. Mirlo: All campaign money should be financed publicly, from city councels, to Mayors, to Governors, State and National Reps, Senators to the Presidency, without exception.

    There is a law currently being proposed in Congress which would be something of a step in this direction. It would require a mix of public financing and small donations only:

    http://demwit.blogspot.com/2009/03/fundraising-treadmill.html

  20. Mirlo

    Thanks, infidel. Do you think it will pass and become reality? Too many big interests against it?

  21. Very difficult to say. I do think the fact that it’s being proposed in both houses, and has bipartisan sponsorship in both, is a good sign.

  22. Wendy

    Shtuey, you are clearly a one-person think tank. I applaud your methodology, conciseness and agree with your suggestions and conclusions 200%, however, I don’t believe us “fringers” have a voice or will effect the change we need YET. I think we may have to wait until things get MUCH worse before we can even begin to amass the following needed to effect the changes needed. Personally, I am storing food, water and ammunition. When the time comes, we will fight and we will win. In the mean time, patience and planning.

  23. Thank you Wendy. I also believe that the time has come to create our own institutions; political, governmental, and financial, which is exactly what the colonies did before declaring independence. Maybe then we can have a cohesive resistance to this oligarchical takeover.

  24. Linda

    shtuey, March 27, 8:01 p.m. “… warrantless wiretapping…” Soon to be joined by Government Internet access. Senate Bills 773 and 778, both part of Cybersecurity Act of 2009, now being reviewed in the Senate. Co-sponsored by Senators Olympia Snowe and Jay Rockefeller.

    Our clock ticks ever faster…

  25. This will provide a better understanding of the aforementioned Senate Bills…773 and 778.

    http://www.eweek.com/c/a/Security/The-Proposed-Federalization-of-the-Computer-Security-Field-297694/

  26. Larry Seltzer is right about 773 & 778. These bills are very, very bad. It’s bad enough that Rockefeller is involved in this, but when you read the words, “with input from the White House,” [read, Rahm dictated, while Jay and Ollie took dictation…or did Rocky tell them all how they were going to play it…or are any of these people really in charge?], you do not get a warm and fuzzy feeling.

  27. In the good old days of black and white Cagney movies, thugs like these gents had gun molls. The women knew everything; the secrets were revealed in the boudoir. For the right price and a bottle of sweet perfume, you could bribe the “lady” to spill the info (then her lover shot her).
    Of course I’m just painting an old Hollywood picture, but something tells me there are more than a few close friends of the henchmen who could bear states witness for a price.

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