Friday, December 13, 2013


Article I, Section 8, Paragraph 17 of the Constitution of the United States says that the Congress shall have the power “to exercise exclusive Legislation in all Cases whatsoever over such District (not to exceed ten Miles square) as may, by Cession of particular States, and the acceptance of Congress, become the Seat of the Government of the United States …”

Virginia donated 39 square miles and Maryland contributed the other 61 square miles. And so the District of Columbia was born. In 1791, it was named the City of Washington, in honor of the first President.

In 1801 the so-called Organic Act, organized the District into two counties and officially ended the Maryland and Virginia state citizenship of the inhabitants.

In 1846 the folks on the Virginia side of the Potomac persuaded their legislature and the Congress to undo the deal they made in 1790, and give the 39 square miles back to the Commonwealth. All that was left of the District of Columbia was the 61 square miles donated by Maryland.

Washington always had a largely African American population. In 1862 Abraham Lincoln signed the Compensated Emancipation Act that ended slavery in the District. In 1868 Congress voted to give black males the right to vote in City elections.

In the early twentieth century, gains made by blacks in D.C. were reversed. Segregation returned with a vengeance under Woodrow Wilson, a situation that persisted into the 1950’s.

The Twenty-third Amendment to the U.S. Constitution ratified in 1961 gives the residents of the District of Columbia the right to vote for President of the United States. It gave the District 3 votes in the Electoral College, equal to the smallest of the fifty states.

By Act of Congress, the people of Washington are allowed two non-voting members of the House of Representatives. The citizens in the District have no voice in the Senate.

In 1957, Washington became the first major city in America to have a black majority population. In 1963 it witnessed the famed “I have a dream” speech by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. In recent years, the black majority has decreased somewhat, as a multi racial gentry restores some of the older neighborhoods.

In 1978, Congress passed and sent to the states a proposed constitutional amendment that would have given the District senators and congressmen equal to a state. That amendment failed after getting only 19 state ratifications in seven years.

The District of Columbia is an unfortunate anomaly in our federal republic. Like a lump in the mattress, its presence is annoying and not entirely avoidable. The Founders of our nation never intended Americans to be ruled by a coterie of elite managers living in Vaticanesque isolation.

More that 600,000 people live and work inside the beltway. They are the clerks, the staffers, the middle managers, the bureaucrats who run our national government. For them, Uncle Sam is the end all and be all of American political power and authority.

Increasingly, Americans are reawakening to the importance of state sovereignty in matters of domestic governance. Massive, top-down national social programs like affordable health care that is neither affordable nor desirable health care, are causing Americans to look more and more to their state governments for effective answers.

It seems to me that an important first step in dismantling the ubiquitous national nanny would be to eliminate the isolated island of imperial importance that fosters the aura of omnipotence in our nation’s capital.

My suggestion:

The 23rd Amendment is hereby repealed, and all lands ceded to the United States for the seat of government are returned to the Commonwealth of Virginia and the State of Maryland respectively.

The Pentagon is in Virginia. There is no reason why the White House can’t be in Maryland. And no reason why the people of Washington should have more to say about who is President than the citizens in 49 of the 50 States.


  1. Picture
    The Constitution and Finding NewMeanings Where There are None.
    That is not what I said or even eluded to - THE CONSTITUTION SAYS WHAT IT MEANS AND MEANS WHAT IT SAYS. The FF&R did not include any references to the British common Law or to John Locke or to Hobbs and many others that they took from. They wrote the document in plain ordinary language of the time so that the everyday common man could read it and understand what they were agreeing to be bound by.
    Most problems with the constitution and issues revolve around someone trying to read into the Document what it does not say - How many 9-0 decisions would the SCOTUS issue if they had to relay only on the actual words and meanings of the time to develop findings. No extensions of clauses, no creating new meanings, no creating new rights, no implied reach through to other laws and doctrines, no modernization, no using Stare decsis, no using case law theory to gain new powers, no use of dicta as in the Maybury V Madison - McCulloch V. Maryland, and others.
    Now if we do not allow any of the above then all items not in Article I section 8 would be the areas that each State would need to decide on their own. Again ending the usurping by the legislature, the executive and the courts of the LIMITED powers of the Federal government. Life would be more simple and States would compete to make their State more free and open to new businesses and ideas or they would lag behind the leaders. No one should be free to "INTERPRET" the Constitution as there is no authority in the Constitution to allow that now is there?

    The desire to create new rights and to control more commerce and dictate how and when the people can do what ever the government wants to limit is why Lawyers, Politicians, Judges all have been trying to change and expand the Federal limitations as the Constitution tells the government what it can do and gives all other powers and rights to the States and to the people. So, unless they can bring in the Federalist papers, letters, speeches, debates, notes and papers like Hamilton's letter on Manufacturing to confused the issue they stand no chance of usurping.

    The question now becomes to me is that will Congress now admit that they have usurped powers they do not have - I have just been reading the Hamilton on Manufacturing and how his words were used by the SC to make decisions that the Congress could spend what ever they wanted - Hamilton's theory remained dormant until 1936, when the Supreme court issued dicta [side comments] referring favorably to Hamilton's view. Later, the Court adopted those dicta as authoritative, and ever since that time the Court has acquiesced in nearly all federal spending - even spending that most people would deem inconsistent with the "general welfare."

    Why haven't legal scholars challenged the accuracy of the is manifest distortion? A few have. But legal scholars are, overwhelmingly, supporters of the federal welfare state, and Hamilton's theory is the major Constitutional prop for the federal domestic spending. Most legal academics want to increase that spending, not strip away its constitutional fig leaf.

    So, most members of Congress are Lawyers - we the people have a long and difficult road to restore our rights and powers. Maybe the 10th amendment and challenge to the commerce clause will make our task a lot easier.

  2. Your argument might be more persuasive if it did not center on Obamacare. Your opinion of Obamacare is not self-evident.

  3. Judge Brennan,
    While all what you have noted is undoubtedly true, it should be obvious to all that since 1913, the autonomous control of our nation's money has been usurped away from Congress into the lap of privately owned banking cartels that operate internationally and for their own selfish purposes. This problem's origins, however, go back even further than all that you have cited. Your ubiquitous nanny cannot be confronted without first abolishing usury in the creation of money. Franklin's and Hamilton's economic policies gave rise to the First Bank of the United States. For over 100 years prior, the Colonies and Continental Congress issued Bills of Credit in paper currency primarily as loans at interest to settlers. In some cases Bills of Credit were issued in excess of the primary loans to pay for the cost of government. Did the issuing colonies or Continental Congress pay interest to themselves when the issues were used to pay for the cost of government? It's a ridiculous question isn't it?
    So the resolution to our problems is not so much breaking the power of the nanny state. This objective cannot be achieved without first going at the major political parties' purse strings. If we did this, we could get a grip on not only the major political parties, but also the beltway elected officials. It would be necessary to estop the authority of the private internationally owned banking cartels from creating any money. As a further step in stopping their control of our economy, we can institute a national credit office that would pay directly for the cost of operating our government, for national infrastructure, for judicial operations, for police departments, for fire and EMT services, for a national pension plan in lieu of Social Security. This will establish an adequate money supply for which only a flat rate income tax would be needed to remove excesses of currency from the money supply. An added benefit from this national credit office will present by being able to lend of these money creations interest free to all residents for primary residence mortgages, student loans, front capital for production. Can you not see allodial ownership of property unencumbered by confiscatory taxation? All this is possible, but not probable because our universities teach greed is good. But there was one who taught otherwise. His name was Jesus. In Luke 6:35 he simply said, "lend asking for nothing in return". Now that we know how this can be accomplished easily, we have no excuse.
    Daniel S. Krynicki
    Michigan Delegate MI019

  4. There certainly does appear to be more of move lately for the states to become more assertive in the face of national social programs. However, the financial incentives are quite material for the states to fall in line. I, for one, don't understand how states like Texas and Florida will be able to justify foregoing billions of dollars of federal support (which essentially are their own tax dollars being returned to them) by not buying into the Medicaid expansion provisions of the Affordable Care Act, for example.

    That said, I doubt if our framers had careerism in mind for so many in the nation-running that exists in Washington today, although in the early days of our country, there were certainly those involved full-time in the tasks of running the nation, for both domestic and foreign policy.

    Charles Murray in his chart and fact-packed book, "Coming Apart: The State of White America, 1960 – 2010," notes that the income gap in this country continues to widen and that those earning most of the money continue to work hard to increase their share even more while being content to have government take care of social problems in their communities. This was not the way of the past where community leaders took care of issues locally. So, as the "ubiquitous national nanny" grows in influence, we may be getting exactly what we've asked for . . . and to dismantle the nanny will take both an awakening and the time and involvement of those making the money.