THE LIBERTARIAN ENTERPRISE
Number 541, October 18, 2009
"There is no genuinly forward-looking
science fiction left in mainstream America."
What Would A Truly Free Nation Look Like?
Attribute to The Libertarian Enterprise
One day soon, the United States Federal government is likely to collapse. The cause will probably be that the rest of the nations of the world will reject the dollar as the world's reserve currency, and adopt another currency, or a basket of currencies, as their new reserve. This currency move is not just a rumor, but is already happening on a small scale. Once the nations of the world have cast aside the dollar, its value will freefall against all other world currencies.
The US government bond market will collapse simultaneously, as bond values will be heading toward zero. Those holding US bonds will be stuck with something they cannot sell. Unfortunately, that means big institutional investors like banks, mutual funds, insurance companies and pension funds will have instant liquidity problems.
This dollar crisis may also cause American banks to begin a tidal wave of defaults and bank "holidays." Banks, mortgage lenders and credit card companies would cease loaning money. That will likely mean that one day you might find that your credit cards and ATMs cards have stopped working.
This event could last for weeks or even months. After a few days (hours?), many of those without cash and food will start looting. Society could break down very quickly. Remember New Orleans just days after Hurricane Katrina. And when US Federal Reserve notes start rapidly losing value, you'll find many merchants that refuse to accept them for payment for goods and services.
Now do you see why I recommend holding gold and silver coins? Not as an investment, but as an alternative money supply. No one will reject gold or silver. Your gold and silver holdings could be the thing that keeps you alive during a catastrophe.
States may look to Washington for a solution, but Washington's solution will likely be to simply order the Federal Reserve to print more paper money. But folks will already know that paper money is becoming worthless, so won't want any more of it.
If the US federal government runs head-on into a currency collapse, it won't be in any better situation than the average citizen. Another problem they will have will be with the active duty military personnel. Soldiers aren't stupid. Will they obey orders and enforce American laws for Washington when they know they will get paid in shrinking dollars? Massive numbers of military personnel may go AWOL. This could make it easier for states to secede.
States will very shortly be forced to face inevitability. They will have two choices. Choice #1 is to stay with Washington like good little slaves. We all talk about secession a lot, but remember that most of the states of the United States were formed after the original thirteen colonies left Britain. So they have always been "owned" by Washington, so to speak. Other than the thirteen colonies of 1776, and the Confederate states of 1865, the rest save Texas and Hawai'i are slave states.
Choice #2 is to secede from the Union and become sovereign nations.
The biggest challenge to state secession, in my never-humble opinion, is not Washington resistance. The biggest challenge to state secession will be from the state politicians already in office. Steeped in Washington-think, and addicted to Federal money, they may naturally default to crafting a new nation in the likeness of Washington. I hope I'm completely wrong, and that liberty lovers will prevail.
So, what would a truly free nation look like? What kind of laboratory of liberty would a state like Texas make?
I realize that many of the characteristics I'll list here are a far-away dream, but I like to dream big. I dream that all government serves the citizen, not the other way around. I dream that government will exist to protect human rights. I dream that all government would be organized upon the Zero-Aggression Principle, which says that no one has the right, under any circumstances, to initiate force or fraud against another human being for any reason whatever; nor may a person advocate the initiation of force or fraud, or delegate it to anyone else.
The new Constitution should specifically outlaw any central bank. No national currency. Gold and silver will be the only money. Federal law allows private banks to issue currency based upon only 100% reserves. Fractional reserve banking specifically made illegal.
The Constitution would drive governance down to the county level. County courts, county law enforcement, county criminal law.
Unicameral legislature based upon population in counties. No need for a bicameral legislature, one house for the people and one for the states, since this is one nation. Legislative session restricted to 140 days per calendar year. That way, no one uses the legislature as a full-time job.
Constitutional convention can be called for if 50% plus one counties call for it.
Military: Constitution authorizes Navy, an Air Force and Marines. The militia is the Army. As the various branches would only function in defense, they would not need many people. No women in combat roles ever.
5 cabinet bureaucracies are State, Justice, Treasury, Interior and Defense. No other cabinets without a constitutional convention mandate. State is the diplomatic corps. Justice includes the Federal Court system, no lifetime appointments for judges. Treasury collects taxes and pays Federal bills. Interior manages Federal lands, infrastructure like Federal roads, and includes Bureau of Standards and agricultural regulations to keep the food supply safe. Defense manages full-time military, one military academy and militia officers.
Judicial has district courts, one court of appeals and one Supreme Court. Each county has a court. Jury nullification built into the law. Codify not just punishing an aggressor, but making the victim whole again.
No social programs. No Social Security, Welfare, food stamps, rent subsidies, college loans, government scholarships, mortgage guarantees, Medicaid, Medicare. All wealth transfer schemes unconstitutional.
Sales tax will be the only revenue for the government with a constitutionally pre-set limit of 10%. Sales tax collects revenue from all who do commerce, which includes those who do not reside in Texas. No property taxes. No Federal stamp on alcohol, tobacco, petroleum, etc. Counties and cities may assess sales tax to fund services, but must get voter approval. Tax rate increases must be passed in a general referendum with a quorum of voters and a 2/3 majority. No inheritance tax. Government that is not financed by sales tax can be financed by user fees.
No tariffs, excise tax or any other tax. Almost overnight, the Port of Houston would become the busiest port in North America and the prices of consumer goods would plummet.
Term limits on all national elected offices. Two terms maximum.
The legality of Gambling, Prostitution, Alcohol sales and Recreational Drugs to be determined by each county, not the Federal government. The War on Drugs failed with the American ratification of the 21st Amendment in 1933 which repealed the 13-year experiment with Prohibition. Texans have better sense than to keep fighting a failed war.
Traffic laws: No drivers licenses. No car tags and state vehicle registration. Drunk driving only prosecuted if there is an incident of loss and liability. Just driving with alcohol in one's body does not constitute a crime.
Abortion law decided county by county by citizen referendum.
Law enforcement: Texas Rangers are the only Federal law enforcement agency. All other law enforcement organized at the county level.
No public school: all public schools properties auctioned off to highest bidders. Education privatized. Parents are responsible for educating their own children. No compulsory attendance laws.
All colleges de-funded: If a college or university cannot maintain profitability through its own efforts, it must either downsize or go out of business. With today's technology, most higher education methods and traditions are outdated and need to change anyway. The free market would force innovation.
No government-run health care system. Force the insurance companies to underwrite without individual ratings for health insurance as well as no denials for pre-existing conditions. Insurance companies already have a long history of underwriting life, health and disability insurance on a group basis without consideration for pre-existing conditions. Allow the free market to determine costs.
Immigration: Except for the Gulf of Mexico, New Texas would be bordered on all sides by other nations. A truly free Texas would be a magnet for people yearning to breathe free. Sound money and liberty would cause a stampede of individuals and businesses to Texas. Happily those who are government handouts junkies would emigrate with lightning speed back into the USA and Mexico. Allowing the free market to regulate immigration would be the best solution. Then, all Texas would have to do is design an immigration procedure and let the market speak.
I cannot imagine a scenario in which the founding mothers and fathers of the New Texas get all of these characteristics into law. But just think of what life would be like if MOST of them happened.
There are two types of people in the world. One wants to live life and not dominate others. This person embraces individual liberty and property rights.
The other want to force people to live life by their dictates. This person wishes to control groups and is the greatest enemy to liberty and property rights.
Which type of person are you?