Perspectives: Iron County Commission, on the right path

OPINION – There are many reasons to be grateful for living in Southern Utah. They include beautiful scenery, clean air, low crime, and strong, self-reliant communities. There’s one more thing to add to that list — local leaders that are willing to say “no” to an increasingly unlimited federal government.

This past Friday, the Iron County Commission passed a Constitutional Jurisdiction resolution clarifying that the county will not recognize federal laws or mandates that violate the U.S. Constitution. It’s a move that would be unthinkable for other counties and municipalities that have become dependent upon federal funding.

Naturally, this move is alarming to those who favor highly centralized government micromanaging down to the local level. It’s not that they are all power-hungry control freaks. Most simply lack an understanding of the proper relationship between the federal government and all other levels of government.

More often than not, their thinking has been shaped by the bastardized form of history taught in an education system that’s been progressively brought under the control of federal bureaucrats. These misconceptions are further reinforced by American mass media that serves to distract rather than inform.

Jim Quinn describes why this is so:

The news, as reported by the corporate legacy media, is nothing more than propaganda generated by the establishment to support their continued control over the financial and governmental levers. It is designed to distract, misinform and obscure the truth.

Only when we turn off the television and begin reading original sources can we begin to see where our grasp of proper government has gone astray.

By original sources, I mean the original documents that provided the foundational building blocks for the founding of America. These would include the Mayflower Compact, the Fundamental Orders of Connecticut, the Body of Liberties of Massachusetts Bay, the Virginia Declaration of Rights, the Declaration of Independence, and the U.S. Constitution.

During the period between 1620 and 1789, the 13 original colonies became the united States. That small “u” is not a typo. It is the correct spelling of a word that referred to thirteen states that possessed individual sovereignty.

This individual sovereignty was further demonstrated in the fact that each of the states wrote their own constitution. It can be witnessed in the fact that when King George signed the Treaty of Paris in 1783, ending the Revolutionary war, he referred to all 13 colonies as separate signatories rather than a single conglomerate.

After the states had gained their independence, they found certain areas of common interest that the Articles of Confederation did not effectively cover. In 1787, the states sent delegates to Philadelphia to correct those deficiencies and the delegates instead constructed a plan to create a federal government.

Keeping in mind that a creation cannot exceed its creator, the people of the various states called into existence a limited federal government. It was a voluntary union in which specific and enumerated powers were delegated to the federal government.

Those federal powers covered only the specified areas of common interest including foreign policy, national defense, and the establishment of post offices and roads. The Constitution represented a contract between the states and the federal government it called into existence. This is how our constitutional republic was created.

The states, meanwhile, retained their individual sovereignty and innumerable and unspecified powers including the right to secede.

Over the years, those who favored an all-powerful national government over a limited federal government relentlessly sought to find ways to avoid constitutional limitations.

Consolidationists like Alexander Hamilton urged the exploitation of the “necessary and proper” clause of the Constitution to invoke “implied powers” that would allow the federal government to reach beyond its limits. Lincoln, through his War of Involuntary Union, destroyed the federalist system and established a national government to which the states became subservient.

Under FDR, the Commerce Clause was exploited to allow the federal government to exercise control over areas of our lives to which no powers had be delegated. At each step along the way, black-robed members of the federal judiciary have created legal smokescreens as cover for the usurpers.

Even today, law schools teach a creative interpretation of the “supremacy clause” in which we’re not supposed to remember that the federal government can only exercise supremacy in regards to its enumerated powers listed in the Constitution. If a federal law or mandate is not consistent with its constitutional limits, it should not be binding on the people for it lacks proper jurisdiction.

There is no blank check for the federal government to hand down any old laws or mandates it wishes.

Without proper separation of powers between the federal government, the states, and the people, there is no effective process to check government authority to ensure it is used to protect individual liberty.

Iron County may be just one small county in a lightly populated Western state, but it is on the right path to restoring the proper balance of power. It begins by just saying: “No.”


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Bryan Hyde is a news commentator and co-host of the Perspectives talk show on Fox News 1450 AM 93.1 FM. The opinions stated in this article are his and not representative of St. George News.

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @youcancallmebry

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2014, all rights reserved.

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  • Robert June 16, 2014 at 10:41 am

    And whose to say that the county has the people’s best interest in mind? Most likely it’s for the benefit of a few! We have seen that practice more then a few times. All forms of government are out of control, yet the author wants to just dwell on the federal issue.

  • Debra Cottam June 16, 2014 at 11:23 am

    I am proud to live in Utah and thank you for not buckling under to the Govts. Overreach! These are scary times we live in but we have to remember just where we come from and who is our real leader! We Utahns have been known not to allow the Govt. to push us around! We are sick and tired of this and we’re not going to take it anymore! God bless the people of Utah and GOD BLESS AMERICA!!!

  • Roy J June 16, 2014 at 1:17 pm

    If it is true that the creation is less than the creator, then it might also be recommended to read all the colony charters of the English colonies in North America. Those documents define the colonies as such, that is, prior to their revolt. There is also the demise of the Federalist party, which more or less coincides with the War of 1812 and Andrew Jackson’s resounding defeat of the British in New Orleans. It would perhaps also be a good idea to study up on the Mexican-American War, the reasons for it, and the results, before turning to the national tensions that resulted in the Civil War. This is because it is vital to understand who populated and colonized the American West and how. Some research into the Missouri Compromise and the Dred Scott decision is also recommended as an introduction to the Civil War. Also, the social catastrophes that caused the Great Depression cannot be marginalized when studying FDR’s New Deal…and there are many other pivotal points of our national history that are being entirely left out.
    Although what Bryan has recommends as primary sources are a good beginning in themselves, it is not the whole story, not by half. It is nowhere near enough to begin with only some of the seminal documents, and then skip over the political doctrines that historicially followed from them, simply for the sake of supporting one’s own political viewpoint. It is that expansion of doctrines and acquisitions, the mergers and destructions of entire peoples and whole cultures; in short the good, the not so good, and the terrible, that can show us why we are who we are as a country today. The study of U.S. history is worthy, laborious, and difficult, but it is worth the effort…oh yeah, and read your Orestes Brownson and Ambrose Bierce.

  • joanna June 16, 2014 at 5:27 pm

    Gee I didn’t know the delegates started to plan the federal government in 1987. How interesting!

  • Karen June 16, 2014 at 7:22 pm

    Mr. Hyde yet again refers to the Civil War as Lincoln’s ” War of Involuntary Union.” Just google that phrase (be sure to use quotes) and you get an avalanche of white supremacist and secessionist garbage. If Mr. Hyde wants to continue with thoughtful discourse on federalism he should refrain from using that loaded term.

    • Native born New Mexican June 17, 2014 at 9:14 am

      I believe in states rights and sovereignty instead of an all powerful national government run by a small international cartel of bankers and other totalitarian types. I am from New Mexico. I have a Hispanic last name and I speak Spanish does that sound like a white supremacist to you? To be fair other sides of my mixed family heritage are Angelo American Some were confederates and some were union men (6 grandfathers) during the war between the states. in my family history the reason for fighting the war was all powerful union or no all powerful union. Slavery wasn’t the question with them. Except for one grandfather the rest had no slaves at all. My confederate family from the mountains of Virginia treated black and white alike. They didn’t like the north invading their land and their state. They lost everything in that war because they were burned out by northern soldiers and that grandfather was put in a horrible Yankee prison camp called point look out Maryland. Read about it sometime. This discussion should be about the proper role of government not about labeling people with certain names because you don’t like their view about something. My personal heroes are Benito Juarez and Thomas Stonewall Jackson both of whom bravely stood up to corrupt oppressive forms of government as we all should.

      • Karen June 17, 2014 at 2:35 pm

        You missed my point. Mr. Hyde’s use of the phrase “War of Involuntary Union” is used by today’s white supremacist groups, plain and simple. I was simply asking Mr. Hyde to refrain from the use of that phrase as it adds nothing to the dialogue. One can certainly make an argument that the Civil War did consolidate power to the Federal Government, but the use of coded words appeals to groups who are far outside a substantive discussion of the facts of the Civil War. To refer to the Civil War as “Lincoln’s War of Involuntary Union” does nothing to add to the dialogue about the proper role of government.

  • Chris June 16, 2014 at 11:02 pm

    The fact is that Iron County has not said “no” to anything yet. Their resolution is just so much posturing. Like Bryan Hyde, Dave Miller is all talk and no action.

  • CHJ June 17, 2014 at 7:51 am

    It is simplistic to suggest that law schools teach a creative interpretation of the “supremacy clause” without specific examples. The broad brushed language of the resolution and the generalizations of Mr Hyde’s comments do not add to a helpful dialogue. What specific Federal actions, rules, regulations or laws are not enumerated and therefore are illegal? Then we can discuss whether there is a conflict between Federal Law and State law.

  • Church Dictatorship June 17, 2014 at 8:24 am

    Utahans need to rid themselves of the dictatorship control of a church that micromanages every facet of everybody in this state. The church demands conformity to its mandates. Utahans speak of freedoms from government control, but what about freedoms from the dictatorship church that takes away their freedoms and micromanages their lives, making everyone feel they are under the church’s microscope. There is a reason Utah has a high anti-depressant drug dependency and why the suicide rate is one of the highest in the nation. It’s not because of the Federal Govt; it’s because of the present culture in the state, one that is highly controlled by a church.

    • makkie August 11, 2014 at 9:51 am

      Spoken like a true atheist and liberal.
      And no, I am not LDS.I am catholic.

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