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HOW can WE the People regain control of OUR right to “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness?” WE have been delving into what won’t work in order to find what will work. So far:
The List (simplified)
1. Overthrow the government by a military coup or para-military militias?
2. The 9/12 Project?
3. Challenge ‘The Commerce Clause’? – This is where WE are
Last time WE looked at some of the background to this case which challenged the Commerce Clause and what was going on in the country and the world when it was decided.
Today: ‘The Commerce Clause’ – part 3 of 4
Many strict constitutionalists believe the Supreme Court decisions in ‘Wickard VS. Filburn’ were unconstitutional. What was more than a mere interpretation of the meaning of the word ‘commerce’ begs the question:
How did the federal government not just have the power to ‘regulate commerce,’ but command jurisdiction over the states?
Unfortunately, by 1942 when his case found its way to the U.S. Supreme Court, all but one justice had been appointed by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Justice Owen Josephus Roberts, a Republican, had been appointed by President Herbert Hoover. The Court was clearly in Roosevelt’s corner philosophically. The court’s unanimous decision in this case reflected New Deal logic.
I have now invoked the precious name or the precarious name (depending on your position), of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, or FDR. What did he have to do with the Commerce Clause, other than that he was president when the case of ‘Wickard VS. Filburn’ was decided in 1942?
Franklin Delano Roosevelt, in his acceptance speech, declared:
“Throughout the nation men and women, forgotten in the political philosophy of the Government, look to us here for guidance and for more equitable opportunity to share in the distribution of national wealth… I pledge you, I pledge myself to a new deal for the American people… This is more than a political campaign. It is a call to arms.”
Franklin Delano Roosevelt (January 30, 1882 – April 12, 1945), often referred to by his initials FDR, was the 32nd President of the United States. He was a central figure of the 20th century during a time of worldwide economic crisis and world war. Elected to four terms in office, he served from 1933 to 1945 and is the only U.S. president to have served more than two terms.
The election campaign was conducted under the shadow of the Great Depression in the United States, and the new alliances which it created. Roosevelt and the Democratic Party mobilized the expanded ranks of the poor as well as organized labor, ethnic minorities, urbanites, and Southern whites, crafting the New Deal coalition. During the campaign, Roosevelt said: “I pledge you, I pledge myself, to a new deal for the American people,” coining a slogan that was later adopted for his legislative program as well as his new coalition.
His inauguration on March 4, 1933 occurred in the middle of a bank panic, when all or almost all of the banking capital in the country was wiped out. To this was the backdrop for his famous words: “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”
The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), a United States government owned corporation was created by the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933. In 1934, the Securities and Exchange Commission was created to regulate Wall Street. Presidential, Executive Order 6102 made all privately held gold of American citizens, property of the US Treasury. This gold, confiscation by executive order was argued to be unconstitutional, but Roosevelt’s executive order asserts authority to do so, was based on the War Time Powers Act of 1917. Gold bullion remained illegal for Americans to own until President Ford rescinded the order in 1974.
The Social Security Act, established Social Security and promised economic security for the elderly, the poor and the sick. While Roosevelt balanced the “regular” budget, the emergency budget was funded by debt, which increased to 40.9% in 1936, and then remained level until World War II, at which time it escalated rapidly.
Withholding Taxes were introduced in1943.
Second term, 1937–1941
FDR may be the father of ‘taking it to the people’ when support in congress and/or the courts seem unavailable. This he did when introducing his family-like atmospheres and comfort setting radio broadcasts, called ‘fireside chats.’
Fireside Chat on Reorganization of the Judiciary, March 9, 1937
“That is not only my accusation. It is the accusation of most distinguished justices of the present Supreme Court. I have not the time to quote to you all the language used by dissenting justices in many of these cases. But in the case holding the Railroad Retirement Act unconstitutional, for instance, Chief Justice Hughes said in a dissenting opinion that the majority opinion was “a departure from sound principles,” and placed “an unwarranted limitation upon the commerce clause.”
What is my proposal? It is simply this: whenever a judge or justice of any federal court has reached the age of seventy and does not avail himself of the opportunity to retire on a pension, a new member shall be appointed by the president then in office, with the approval, as required by the Constitution, of the Senate of the United States.
That plan has two chief purposes. By bringing into the judicial system a steady and continuing stream of new and younger blood, I hope, first, to make the administration of all federal justice, from the bottom to the top, speedier and, therefore, less costly; secondly, to bring to the decision of social and economic problems younger men who have had personal experience and contact with modern facts and circumstances under which average men have to live and work. This plan will save our national Constitution from hardening of the judicial arteries.
The number of judges to be appointed would depend wholly on the decision of present judges now over seventy, or those who would subsequently reach the age of seventy.
If, for instance, any one of the six justices of the Supreme Court now over the age of seventy should retire as provided under the plan, no additional place would be created. Consequently, although there never can be more than fifteen, there may be only fourteen, or thirteen, or twelve. And there may be only nine.”
The Supreme Court was the main obstacle to Roosevelt’s programs during his second term, overturning many of his programs. In particular in 1935, the Court unanimously ruled that the National Recovery Act (NRA), was an unconstitutional delegation of legislative power to the president. Roosevelt stunned Congress in early 1937 by proposing a law allowing him to appoint five new justices, a “persistent infusion of new blood.” – FDR
This “court packing” plan ran into intense political opposition from his own party, led by Vice President Garner, since it seemed to upset the separation of powers and give the President control over the Court.
Third term, 1941–1945
The military buildup spurred economic growth, and perhaps more so than any policy implemented since 1929. Perhaps during no other time in history was it more clear than during WW II that war is good for business, for the economy and for jobs! By 1941, unemployment had fallen to under 1 million.
On December 6, 1941, President Roosevelt read an intercepted Japanese message and told his assistant Harry Hopkins, “This means war.” He never warned Admiral Husband Kimmel or Lt. Gen. Walter Short after reception of the message before the Pearl Harbor attack.
On December 7, 1941, the Japanese attacked the US Pacific Fleet at Pearl Harbor, destroying or damaging 16 warships, including most of the fleet’s battleships, and killing more than 2,400 American military personnel and civilians.
“Yesterday, December 7, 1941 — a date which will live in infamy — the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan.”
No attack by Japan on the U.S. was a guarantee the U.S. would declare war on Germany. In such a case, American public anger would be directed at Japan, not Germany, just as it happened. The Tripartite Pact (Germany, Italy, Japan) called for each to aid one another in case of attack; Japan could not reasonably claim America had attacked Japan if it attacked first. For instance, Germany had been at war with the UK since 1939, and with the U.S.S.R. since June 1941 without Japanese assistance. There was a serious, if low-level, naval war going on in the Atlantic between Germany and the U.S. Navy in the summer of 1941, in any case. Nevertheless, it was only Hitler’s declaration of war, unforced by the Axis treaty, several days after the Pearl Harbor attack that brought the U.S. into the European war.
The U.S. government has had ten official inquiries into the attack – the inquiry by Secretary of the Navy Frank Knox (1941), the Roberts Commission (1941–42), the Hart Inquiry (1944), the Army Pearl Harbor Board (1944), the Naval Court of Inquiry (1944), the Hewitt investigation, the Clarke investigation, the Congressional Inquiry (1945–46) and the top-secret inquiry by Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson, authorized by Congress and carried out by Henry Clausen (the Clausen Inquiry) (1946). The tenth inquiry, the Thurmond-Spence Hearing, took place in April 1995. The Dorn Report resulted from this tenth hearing.10 Commissions investigating the attack on Pearl Hrbor including many conspiracy theories. Having read it it in its entirety, I am satisfied with the Roberts Commission. January 23. 1942, being most likely the most reliable as it was the first conducted so close to the event and the freshness in the mind of the witnesses. The first Roberts Commission was a presidentially-appointed commission formed in December 1941, shortly after the attack on Pearl Harbor by the Japanese in 1941, to investigate and report the facts relating to the attack. The commission was headed by US Supreme Court Associate Justice Owen Josephus Roberts, and for this reason it was known as the Roberts Commission. The commission found the commanders of Pearl Harbor, Adm. Husband Kimmel and Gen. Walter Short, guilty of ‘dereliction of duty’. The Commission presented their findings to Congress January 28, 1942
July 26, 1941 – Roosevelt freezes Japanese assets in United States and suspends relations.
Dec 8, 1941 – United States and Britain declare war on Japan.
Dec 11, 1941 – Germany declares war on the United States.
Jan 1, 1942 – Declaration of the United Nations signed by 26 Allied nations.
Jan 13, 1942 – Germans begin a U-boat offensive along east coast of USA.
Jan 26, 1942 – First American forces arrive in Great Britain.
February 19, 1942 – Executive Order 9066, signed by Franklin D. Roosevelt on February 19, 1942, allowed authorized military commanders to designate “military areas” at their discretion, “from which any or all persons may be excluded.” These “exclusion zones”, unlike the “alien enemy” roundups, were applicable to anyone that an authorized military commander might choose, whether citizen or non-citizen. Eventually such zones would include parts of both the East and West Coasts, totaling about 1/3 of the country by area. Unlike the subsequent detainment and internment programs that would come to be applied to large numbers of Japanese Americans, detentions and restrictions directly under this Individual Exclusion Program were placed primarily on individuals of German or Italian ancestry, including American citizens
In June – Mass murder of Jews by gassing begins at Auschwitz.
June, 4-7, 1942 – Battle of Midway
June 25, 1942 – Eisenhower arrives in London.
July 9, 1942 – Germans begin a drive toward Stalingrad in the USSR.
July 22, 1942 – First deportations from the Warsaw Ghetto to concentration camps; Treblinka extermination camp opened.
Aug 7, 1942 – British General Bernard Montgomery takes command of Eighth Army in North Africa.
Aug 12, 1942 – Stalin and Churchill meet in Moscow.
Aug 17, 1942 – First all-American air attack in Europe.
Aug 23, 1942 – Massive German air raid on Stalingrad.
Sept 2, 1942 – Rommel driven back by Montgomery in the Battle of Alam Halfa.
Sept 13, 1942 – Battle of Stalingrad begins.
Oct 5, 1942 – A German eyewitness observes SS mass murder.
Oct 18, 1942 – Hitler orders the execution of all captured British commandos.
Nov 8, 1942 – Operation Torch begins (U.S. invasion of North Africa).
Novemeber 9, 1942 – Monday – the case which challenged the Commerce Clause – Petitioner: Wickard VS. Respondent. The case was decided in favor of the government. Right spack-dab in the middle of all these events which led up to this date and that which was to follow, this little heeded and still virtually unknown decision, set the stage for more government jurisdiction over state rights and individual rights. WE the people and the people of the world were otherwise occupied, with WW II; not the courts.
Nov 11, 1942 – Germans and Italians invade unoccupied Vichy France.
Nov 19, 1942 – Soviet counter-offensive at Stalingrad begins.
Dec 2, 1942 – Professor Enrico Fermi sets up an atomic reactor in Chicago.
Dec 16, 1942 – Soviets defeat Italian troops on the River Don in the USSR.
Dec 17, 1942 – British Foreign Secretary Eden tells the British House of Commons of mass executions of Jews by Nazis; U.S. declares those crimes will be avenged.
Dec 31, 1942 – Battle of the Barents Sea between German and British ships.
Manhattan Engineer District (MED),
MED refers specifically to the period of the project from 1942–1946 under the control of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, under the administration of General Leslie R. Groves. The scientific research was directed by American physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer. Secret installations all under the jurisdiction or control of the Federal Government, sprung up all over the country to test and to produce the atomic bomb which was dropped on Japan at the order of President Truman, the next president after FDR.
Fourth term and death, 1945
The rapid expansion of government programs that occurred during Roosevelt’s term redefined the role of the government in the United States, and Roosevelt’s advocacy of government social programs was instrumental in redefining liberalism for coming generations.
This is not an exposé or a scathing attack on Franklin Delano Roosevelt. The truth is, I and most likely no one knows what was or was not in his heart. When people are in pain enough, they want and need comfort and will often accept it from anyplace; from anything and from anyone they believe, can get it for them. FDR did not design the Great Depression and as current events similar, seem to repeat, he “inherited it,” and as the current administration use words today, FDR had to try and “mop up.”
Whenever a crisis is real or designed, the public at large become concerned at least and at worst, worried and afraid. Fear is a powerful enemy and a tool which can be used to make rapid and radical changes. FDR knew this when he said, “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself. But many were afraid then and many are afraid today. Good intentioned or not, there is a great tendency to blame others – to criticize, condemn and complain. During a crisis, first, you challenge the thinking as being ‘wrong thinking.’ Next you associate that ‘wrong thinking’ with ‘danger’ and finally you endeavor to show the cause of both the ‘wrong thinking’ and the ‘danger’ stemming from the motivation to profit or for profit. If successful, this method has and can move policy forward. Again, I am not questioning FDR’s motivation or that of any president past, future or present, but with the same methods that have been used in the past and are being used in the present, I question and boldly question, the thinking, the danger and motivations of the those which stand to gain the most in profits, power and control.
Every dictator, tyrant, leader, lawyer and politician knows clearly that the pot they hold or have any measure of control over is limited. WE the people have either contributed to that pot or what WE have, has been taken from us. Redistribution of wealth is nothing more than giving to those that have not contributed or contributed enough. It is to take that which is given and given to those that have not. Not that helping others is the problem, as it is who gets the help and how much. It removes individual the choice of who gets the help and how much from those that have contributed or forced to pay into this limited pot. So this pot has costs to administer it. There can be waste, theft, corruption and abuse of what is in the pot. So after it is all said and done, the pot is smaller in the end than it was at the start and fewer people to benefit from it. Finally, it lays in the hands of those which control the pot to decide who gets what.
No matter how long; how often and for what we cry – help me, fix me, cover me, protect me, heal me, empower me or ‘success me,’ there is only so much in the pot. There is only so much to go around. Somebody is ‘gonna’ get something at the expense or the exclusion of someone else. No matter what WE are promised, someone(s) going to be missed or left out. So at the heart of this issue; at the heart of the Commerce Clause is control. Our founding fathers with full understanding, set into our constitution, ‘The Balance of Powers.’ Since that time, it has been a matter of control. How does one go about controlling all three branches of government? If the Democratic Party was in control of the Congress during FDR’s presidency (and they were), and the executive branch was under the control of FDR (and it was), and for the most part, the Supreme Court and the Judiciary Branch was under the control of the White House (and it was), this is called jurisdiction or control. But this all started a long time before FDR!
To conclude this lengthy, but important series, we must go back into the past, all the way back to the year of 1861.
This is a tawdry tale of usurpation, jurisdiction and control. It is hidden like the Matrix or like Alice’s tales in Wonderland. The most astonishing thing of all, is that it is all legal (fiction), and out in the open for anyone to see.
What may seem as insurmountable odds in regaining control of our liberties may appear hopeless, but there is an answer! Stay tuned here as we continue.
Next Time – Getting OUR Heads out of the Sand
Check out the other blogs listed to the right. Come often. Bring others. Get involved. Do something. Even if it is just leaving a comment, that’s doing something. But don’t bother in telling me how stupid I am, this won’t work or that you hate my guts and things like that. Been there, done that and heard that all before and then some. Be original. Be different.
Ask not what your country can do for you
or what you can do for your country,
but what can WE do for each other!”
1 of WE,Dahni An Amer-I-Can eagle
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