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Was The Constitution Written To Restrain The Federal Government?

In the past, from great men like Patrick Henry, to brilliant men, today, like Judge Andrew Napolitano, we’ve been told that The United States Constitution was written to keep The Federal Government off our backs…

Patrick Henry:
“The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people, it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government – lest it come to dominate our lives and interests.”

While I completely agree with Patrick Henry that, The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people, the truth is, The United States Constitution created The Federal Government; therefore, if there were no U.S. Constitution, or The U.S. Constitution was never ratified, there would be no Federal Government!

While I would not presume to have more knowledge, or insights, then a great Founder like Patrick Henry, or a brilliant legal mind like Judge Napolitano, it does seem like an oxymoron to suggest that the very document that created a Government was also created to restrain the Government. That would be like saying, Dr. Frankenstein created his monster in order to restrain his monster.

In reality, it was The Federal Bill of Rights that were demanded by the anti-Federalists of the day, if they were to agree to ratify The U.S. Constitution, that were included as the first ten amendments to The Constitution, and were put there, explicitly, as additional restraints on Congress; and, by extension, the other two branches of the newly created Federal Government.

The men who wrote The U.S. Constitution, did give Congress very Limited and Defined Powers, as The Federal Government, essentially, was created to be an agent, or provider, of a Few, Defined Powers, that were perceived as necessary, by The Federalists, at the time, in order to have a strong [federal] union of states. As we have learned, overtime, those Enumerated Powers were not sufficient in limiting The Federal Government, and The Bill of Rights, while it seems like a constant struggle, actually have put some restraint onto what many of us would perceive today, as a rogue institution, who is no longer interested in having any limits on their Power, or respect for the sovereignty of these states, and We, The People.

Today, we have a Federal Government, who presumes to have the Power to create so-called, “Constitution-Free zones” inside of The United States, to where they can, randomly, without [Fourth Amendment] probable cause, or a warrant, pull over American citizens and demand to see I.D., ransack their cars, take possession of their electronic devices etc. Our Federal Government, in all of their hubris, has taken on an almost complete, Constitution-be-dammed attitude! All three branches included, have morphed into the very monstrosity that the anti-Federalists warned us about, prior to the ratification of The U.S. Constitution.

Furthermore, if our Federal Government can declare certain places Constitution-Free zones, where The Constitution is no longer in effect, then, in reality, our Federal Government should be null and void! In other words, as I alluded to above, The U.S. Constitution created The Federal Government; therefore, where there is no Constitution (in effect), there shouldn’t be a Federal Government (in effect)!

It is well past high-time that, We, The People, seriously begin reigning in this Federal Government, “lest it come to dominate our lives and interests,” and completely consumes us, our wealth, and all of our resources.


Posted, originally at, The Original Republican

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  1. Derrell Poole says:

    This looks like a worthy Read indeed. There has been talk of Constitutional Convention for as long as I have been aware of the Constitution (you never really thought about it as a kid) and I’ve always been resistant to that event. But if we could maintain the spirit of the Constituion it could indeed turn us back to our First Principles. And as sad and disgusting as this will sound; in light of the current events, what have we got to loose?

    I will try to get a copy of Levin’s book. Thanks Mark.

    • Mark Ross says:

      Derrell,
      Last night, I decided to write a brief post about The Liberty Amendments. Please check it out: Article Five And The Liberty Amendments

      At the bottom of the post is an hour long video of Mark Levin, on The Hannity Show, explaining the entire process, and getting into his book.

      If you have the time, the video is very informative.

  2. Derrell Poole says:

    I love these kinds of discussions and tomes. I love to dwell on what our founders intended. You are absolutely right, Mark. I think if we step back and compare all of the components of the time and event – the process of the Colonies becoming “A People”, a collection of numerous States, and finally, a Nation, the intent of the Constitution is very clear. It is so stated in the first line of the Preamble; “We the People in order to form a more perfect Union…” Any objective consideration of all that was going on in those days cannot conclude to any other explanation than that our Founders were PARANOID of Government and yet were imminently wise to understand Government was a necessary EVIL! EVIL – not good! That men would not always govern themselves properly, that is, equitably and morally, as individuals, and that foreign powers could not be trusted reQuired the creation of a Federal Government. For this reason I do not take the Constitution as a stand alone Document. It is the primary document of several that include the Declaration of Independence, the Bill of rights, the additional Amendments that adhere to the spirit of the Constitution (I’m sorry – the 16th (and the repealed 18th) does / did NOT) as well as the Federalist Papers and all of the thoughta and comments of those who helped create this Nation and our constitution. All of these point to our First Principles as so aptly described in the D of I – that ALL government is meant to protect the Individual’s Unalienable Rights, that A government is GIVEN Just Authority to govern BY the Governed, and that when Government ceases to be JUST and proper to the concern of the people they not only have the UNalienable Right to rebel but it is their Honorable DUTY to do so!

    The Spirit of the Constitution is this; That Government, in the hands of AMATURE – the PEOPLE – is limited to those Authorities only necessary to fulfill Its obligation to protect our rights!

    In 1861 the Civil War began the earnest process of destroying that Spirit when States Rights came under conflict in full force. The wrong side lost and the Federal Government gained a foot on which to build itself into what it is today!

    BTW, I am not a Scholar. I am a simple Citizen with a scratchy ability to think. If I can figure all of this out for myself thru my own attention to the subject I hold everyone who does NOT in contempt!

    • Mark Ross says:

      Derrell,
      As well as The Declaration of Independence, The Bill of Rights, and The Federalist Papers, it is very enlightening to read many of The Anti-Federalist writings of the day, as well. The Anti-Federalists, that is, those who opposed the ratification of The Constitution, and demanded a Bill of Rights, predicted so much of what is going on today.

      The Constitution is a brilliant document, with MANY valuable, and beautiful principles; but, as a result of creating The Federal Government, and The Federal Government not staying within their Constitutional limits and spheres, we are now, as American citizens, stuck with two repressive Governments, and all of their Liberty-trampling ways that go along with it.

  3. grumpy says:

    Mark you’re on the right track- almost. The very first words in the Preamble to the Constitution are

    “We the people”

    The Constitution is a creation of the people;

    It is our consent for the Federal Government to exist, subject to the rules and limitations placed on it by the people in the Constitution..

    Now that Government has decided it can ignore the Constitution.. It is our right, and obligation to change it.

    We have to start by eliminating everyone who is part of what has become a permanent ruling political class.. from any position in government..

    That’s what elections are for

    Now all you have to do is explain that to 300,000,000 Americans and get them off their dead butts

    • Mark Ross says:

      Thank you grumpy! But, I’m afraid that mere elections, and “voting the bums out,” will no longer be sufficient.

      Something much more radical, and out of the box, needs to be done!

      Our Federal Government has proven, time and again, that, they are incapable of restraining and policing themselves.

      • grumpy says:

        Mark–

        Understand what you’re saying, and I don’t disagree completely- I’m advocating waking people up, the sound of a million bikes might make enough noise to do the trick.

        There’s a plan to try and get 2000000 bikers into DC Sept 11th to offset the million Muslim whatever..

        If someone could talk 50,000 truckers into joining the party, if another 20.000,000 people stayed home from work, and kept their kids home from school… I’m thinking the political class would ordering adult diapers by the truckload..

        If two million bikers can make the trek to DC, the least the rest of us can do is show our support..

        Even better, If all those people who stay home send a couple emails to Congress — Remember the effect the Stop SOPA emails had on Harry Reid..

        The problem remains- getting people off their dead butts

        • Derrell Poole says:

          I think we became “A People” at the writing of the D of I. We established our First Principles at that point. And that it was upon this document that the Constituion was built.

          I agree that 300,000,000 people – even 150,000,000 people – EVEN 100,000,000 people, aware and motivated – would turn this Government around without a violent recurrence.

          People like to jump on the “First Blood” mentality – they are impatient and they are afraid (as they should be). They buy into the hopelessness.

          All is not lost YET and our system is still in place. It is not broken and WILL work if we can motivate enough people to make it work. A water wheel doesn’t turn if there is no water running over it. But it can still be turned. So how is IT broken?

          We have seen what can happen when enough of us stand up and say NO! Consider the Anti Gun Bill this last spring. Look at what has happened to the Senate Amnesty Bill, so far. Other Nations rebel because they have no other recourse. We have this Ace in the hole – our Constitution and a System that is NOT broken! If that Fails THEN we can openly rebel. But as the D of I warns, do not go into recurrence lightly.

          We must remember that it has taken 150 years to get us to this point – on the brink – Do we not expect it will take a few years or a few decades to really turn this around? We need to change the minds of an entire generation; to reverse Social Demoralization of our people.

          But if all else fails, I am, after all, a Sworn Oath Holder of the Constriction and an American Patriot and I will KILL the enemies of my country or die trying.

          • Mark Ross says:

            Amen Derrell! Well said!

            Every patriot needs to read Mark Levin’s latest book, “The Liberty Amendments.” This is a perfectly legal, and constitutional, way, for us to try to turn this ship around, without one bit of bloodshed.

            I’ve been suggesting an Article V Convention for like 5 years now. We can no longer let the fear-mongers stop us from pursuing this avenue/recourse!

            the-liberty-amendments