The Nullification Generation
Nullification will be found by the up and coming generation to be the rightful remedy for so many ills originating in Washington, D.C. As exemplified in the Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions of 1798, nullification can be understood and defended on grounds of Constitutionality, morality, and economics.
Its legality checks out as Constitutional as the 10th Amendment itself. “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.” That means check the delegated powers in Article 1 Section 8 if you had any doubts as to where exactly the federal government had jurisdiction. Clauses in the Constitution such as the Necessary and Proper, Commerce, and the Tax and Spending Clause have all been practically rewritten by self-serving judicial rulings, executive orders and of course legislative acts since the Founding Era. Beyond the Founding Generation’s time, original meaning and therefore legitimate legal force have been hidden and forgotten.
Morally, nullification ensures trust and consent at a comparatively high level among citizens and their governing bodies of various scales. It is a virtuous goal because the means used to achieve it are respectful to freedom of choice and non-violence. Waiting for future federal elections to repeal or abolish unconstitutional legislation is the devil’s game.
Nullification is practical and it makes sense economically. How else is the standard of efficiency or “well regulated” to be measured? The states must not be subjected to the final word of the United States Supreme Court. Is it practical to let the hot dog maker write his own non-peer reviewed certification? Is it economical to keep going on the current path? Any unconstitutional federal program decentralized into sovereign state programs will operate in a more fiscally sane manner responding to more market oriented signals. Competing government services across open state borders can serve the General Welfare much more efficiently than a limitless bureaucracy concentrated into one board room.
This is 2012. The 9/11 generation, the Internet generation, the Millenials or whatever you wish to call them, are in their prime moment to make a political impact. So many are over 18 now and can begin the path to peace and prosperity. End interventionist foreign policy with the simple switch of nullification on unconstitutional use of the National Guard. Whether it’s marijuana, money, health care or the TSA, concerned young Americans will find their best answer is localism and transparency with a clear road paved in nullification and civil disobedience. If there are enough in the youth ranks then this looming indentured servitude can be averted.Nick Hankoff is Chair of Los Angeles County Republican Liberty Caucus and Grassroots Coordinator with Tenth Amendment Center.