Mark Levin’s ‘The Liberty Amendments’

MarkLevin_LibertyAmendments_Cover__33917.1373489734.251.374In her memoir of her childhood, Prague Winter, Madeleine Albright describes what it was like to witness the death of democracy in her native Czechoslovakia. She details how the enemies of democracy were able to elect a plurality of their followers to the parliament and, in coordination with the media that they controlled and the mobs in the streets that they themselves had orchestrated, they confused and divided the majority, which valued liberty. The nation was thus brought into a four-decade era of darkness. Years later, Czechoslovakia’s newly-installed tyrannical rulers in the Czech Communist Party would detail these tactics in an internal report called, “How Parliament Can Play a Revolutionary Part in Transition to Socialism,” which made its way to the West and was published by the United States House of Representatives in the 1960s as a warning to Americans of what can happen when the people are cowed by fear and lured by the siren song of utopia into voluntarily relinquishing their freedom.

The American left has learned the strategies of tyranny all too well. In the run-up to the 2012 election, the misnamed Democratic Party had their union cronies organize the malcontents of society into “Occupy Wall Street” and set them loose on the public. With the media covering up their filth, violence and rapes, “Occupy” distracted Americans from the looming threat of Obamacare and focused attention on “income inequality.” At the same time, the Obama administration turned the IRS into a weapon of political repression and used it against law-abiding citizens to suppress their peaceful voices of dissent.

This is where America stands today: a tyrannical president who is coldly robbing millions of Americans of their healthcare; a renegade judiciary that cannot be relied upon to faithfully follow the word of the Constitution; a power hungry, goose-stepping party that works relentlessly to drag the nation down the road to serfdom; and a castrated opposition party too afraid to fight for their principals. Faced with this bleak outlook, conservative freedom fighter and constitutional lawyer Mark Levin dedicated himself to answering the question callers to his popular radio show ask the most: “What can we do?”

Levin found his answers in Article V of the Constitution.  He explains that “[Article V] provides for two methods of amending the Constitution.” In the first method, “two-thirds of Congress passes a proposed amendment and then forwards it to the state legislatures for possible ratification by three-fourths of the states[.]” The second method “involv[es] the direct application of two-thirds of the state legislatures for a Convention for proposing Amendments, which would thereafter also require a three-fourths ratification vote by the states.” It is the second method he focuses on.

This process, it is important to point out, does not provide for a constitutional convention. Instead, it provides a way to offer Amendments to the Constitution over the heads of our inept political ruling class and at the same time preserves enough roadblocks to prevent a runaway caucus. Levin supplements all eleven of his proposed Amendments with the words of the Framers, showing that each of the ideas is in the tradition of their thinking, and offers examples of how these values are at risk by an ever-expanding and oppressive federal leviathan.

New Yorkers can appreciate and identify with many of the proposals:

An Amendment to Establish Term Limits for Members of Congress: New York City had the foresight to put similar term limits on our City Council. After twelve long years we will finally be rid of Democrat Charles Barron, the loudmouthed former Black Panther who used his seat on the City Council to express his racism (“I want to go up to the closest white person and say, ‘You can’t understand this. It’s a black thing’ and then slap him, just for my mental health.”), shill for the world’s worst dictators (as long as they hate America), stunt the economy of his district (when it benefits the unions), and trash “terrorist” Israel and the “Jewish lobby” (comments which, irony of all ironies, earned him the endorsement of former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke). This also means that entrenched extremists like Democrat Melissa Mark-Viverito – whose support for Puerto Rican separatism is so extreme that she advocates clemency for FALN terrorists, a group infamous for their deadly bombing campaigns against New York – will not be around forever. This block against entrenchment is good for the City, and it would be good for the Country too.

An Amendment to Limit the Federal Bureaucracy: In the 1960s radical academic Frances Fox Piven devised a scheme whereby the left would flood welfare rolls until “the system” (capitalism) collapses and thereafter build socialism in its wake. The idea took hold in New York and by 1975 the exploding welfare rolls bankrupted the city. In 2010, Piven told the Stalinist Brecht Forum that, “under the radar,” Obama has made appointments to the Federal Bureaucracy that meet her approval. The Bureaucracy wields enormous, and expanding, power over our lives, and the idea that it could be run by a bunch of Frances Fox Pivens should be a perfect enough example to explain why steps should be taken to reign it in:

An Amendment to Protect Private Property: Anyone who lived through Occupy Wall Street can testify to the importance of private property, which the Founding Fathers wisely held to be sacred. Once the malcontents convinced themselves that they had a “right” to “occupy” – or, as the Marxists would say, “expropriate” – the property of others, all semblance of civil society degenerated to the point where, as the New York Post reported at the time, we had “the nauseating spectacle of rapes being reported not to the police, but to the ‘Security Working Group,’ which hands down internal punishments to offenders. According to activist Channing Kehoe, those guilty of assault are punished by having their blankets taken away.” Private property is a central pillar in any decent civilization, and Levin is right to advocate its strengthening.

Levin is fond of saying that Washington will not fix itself. It’s true. He has now shown us a way that we the people can save ourselves. We can take matters into our own hands with The Liberty Amendments, or lazily watch as our freedom is snuffed out by the specter of all-consuming centralized government.

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  • sendtheclunkerbacktochicago

    What we can do to “begin” to save America is demand our Representatives to begin an investigation into the fraud and criminal activity that went into the usurping of the office of the POTUS. There is an on going 29 month criminal investigation of Barack Hussein Obama that has gathered and collected and packaged the evidence that will take down this snake and his Chicago mob. All these cowards in Congress would have to do is provide an platform for the investigators to present their evidence. The evidence is overwhelming and it would result in this nightmare coming to an end.

    • Patriot077

      I don’t know about your Senators and Congressional Reps, but mine don’t even answer specific issues. Canned responses. They aren’t going to fix DC. Neither party has enough combined who care more for the country than their own egos.
      That isn’t to say that we shouldn’t continue to collect all the evidence and do what we can in other arenas, but the Article 5 Convention of States is the backstop provided by the framers and should be heartily endorsed by constitutionalists who will protect that process.

  • Jack Moran

    The Article V convention is a great idea, just about 30 years too late though. And does anybody have any idea of how long this is going to take? 5 years? 10 years? We won’t have a country left by then! And are we to believe that a government that doesn’t follow the Constitution now will adhere to even more restraints? And what exactly is the enforcement mechanism to get the government to obey the limits we place on it?
    In reality, the answer lies with our state legislatures standing up to our lawless federal government. The states are sovereigns and have to power to push back, they just need to be educated and supported. We are doing that in Indiana, where we recently formed ReFounders Indiana, an organization dedicated to educating candidates to state office on the Constitution and the fundamental principles of liberty. We have also established a PAC to help elect constitutional conservatives to the state legislature who will have the courage to say “no” to the feds via nullification or veto of unconstitutional federal laws and regulations.
    Levin doesn’t agree with this approach, but then he’s just another attorney. This is how to make a difference and save our country now, not 10 years from now.

    • reader

      Levin is not just another attorney, he is Mr. Constitution, and he explained at length why the nullification won’t work. Simply put, it it will nullify the Constitution. Why would by the so-called “constitutional conservatives”, no less, want to do that is pretty interesting. Strikes me as circular logic. If you want to break up the Union altogether, say it, don’t tap dance.

      • NAHALKIDES

        Nullification certainly could work, but it wouldn’t be accepted at the present time. I haven’t read Levin’s book, but I would suggest that since 3/4 of the states are required to amend the Constitution, 1/4 of the states plus 1 should logically be able to nullify any Congressional act as unconstitutional. That would be an additional, much-needed check on Congress until we can figure out how to fix the Federal judiciary, which all too often acquiesces to each new power-grab by Congress.

        • reader

          Right, but, unless you’re keen on breaking up the Union, why would you want to nullify the Constitution at all? The point is that the Constitution has been breached by the runaway feds, and Article V is the backstop put in there by the founders. For restoring the constitutional order, not for completely dismantling it. Again, it helps to read up something first you’re keen to critique.

          • NAHALKIDES

            “nullification” refers to the nullification of unconstitutional acts of Congress. It does not mean nullifying the Constitution. It would certainly be appropriate for the 26 or more states that hate Obamacare to nullify it, but the state governors weren’t ready to take that action. It would have killed Obamacare, because Obama would have been helpless to force compliance.

            I’m pretty well read up on Constitutional matters, by the way, I just haven’t read Levin’s book – lack of time and, in the age of Obama, money.

    • rbutkowski

      “The Article V convention is a great idea, just about 30 years too late though”…Nonsense! The Article V. Convention is a TERRIBLE idea since there is no way to limit that conention’s power to lock the doors and change the whole Constitution as occurred when the convention nullified or scrapped the Articles of Confederation and re-wrote the whole constitution of the day. We were lucky we had the braintrust of the framers and founders. Today we have too many uninformed useful idiots like Pelosi, and other assorted liberals (like RINOs). General Valely is closer to a solution, since all branches of government have been taken over by a socialist coup. It may be time for a Jeffersonian Solution.

      • GMBurns

        No, Mr.Butkowski, please read the article again, or better yet, Article V:: the convention does not have the power to ‘approve’, only ‘propose’. Whatever is proposed THEN has to be ratified by 3/4s of the states to be incorporated into the Constitution. That provides plenty of time for public review and rejection.
        The Articles of Confederation were not scrapped and replaced under these rules because Article V didn’t exist until it was done.

    • TeaPartyPat949

      The only alternative is another revolution which, I believe, is inevitable.

  • ADM64

    I am not convinced a convention is the right move. Proposing amendments, yes. A convention would simply open up everything and we might find the result is far bigger government. The problem is the culture: many people now take as normal the idea that government should do things. Even so-called conservatives argue that instead of repealing Obamacare we should offer an alternative so as not to be seen as a movement or party of “no.” The problem with that suggestion is that it perpetuates the idea that government should be involved in facilitating people’s healthcare (or old age or any of the ordinary risks and responsibilities of living). And that is what must change. And we have been poor at changing the culture.

    • opinionated1945

      And so…?

    • reader

      The idea is that the States lost their rights to the run-away Federal Government. I think that to discuss something it really pays to read it in the first place. And, if something went over the head, it really helps to read it once more.

    • TeaPartyPat949

      2/3rds of the States would need to propose and then approve the Amendments making it impossible to have a run away “convention”. Our Founders gave us this option for the exact reasons we are seeing now. An out of control, run away Federal government.

      • Jack Moran

        You get it Pat.

      • Don

        It will be a miracle if delegates will agree on one amendment, so I doubt fears of a runaway convention are grounded in reality.

    • WackoTurds

      How else to stop our runaway government? The Congress? Jurists? Liar and Chief? Some supposedly solid people caved as soon as they had access to all of the candy and attention upon arrival in DC. Time to reshuffle the deck and you must understand it is NOT a Constitutional Convention.

    • WackoTurds

      It is NOT a Constitutional convention, it is a Convention of States to propose Amendments. I get so tired of good people on my side, those who bristled with me at Pelosi’s juvenile “We have to pass it so we can see what is in it,” but cannot discern Levin and his suggestion at Article V provisions to changing the government. At least go on Amazon and read the inside of the book jacket before saying “We don’t need a Constitutional Convention.” Sheeeeeeeeesh!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • CrazyAuntJane

    We must NEVER allow a constitutional convention but some amendment would be a good thing! In a constitutional convention, the first thing that would go would be Free Speech, then the 2nd Amendment would be history, and Freedom of Religion would be limited to personal beliefs that are never to be expressed publicly and goodness knows what else!
    But we seriously need term limits for EVERYONE and especially for the judiciary!

    And I love the idea of an Amendment that says that any law passed must apply to the president and congress and the senate!!

    And we need to somehow protect private property. There are so many ways that private property is being limited or done away with! Like seizing property if one is suspected of possessing drugs with no real proof or conviction of a crime. Or seizing property for development when someone doesn’t want to sell. Then there are the excessive property taxes that make it nearly impossible for anyone but the wealthy to own property. I could go on.

    • TeaPartyPat949

      It is NOT a Constitutional convention! It is a Convention of States to propose Amendments. This idea was agreed to UNANIMOUSLY by every delegate as a last resort to avoid a revolution.

  • Al Dunaway

    And which politicians will you trust to decide what to amend? The Constitution is fine as is, we just need to follow it. We no longer have Thomas Jefferson and the guys to do it, we have George Soros, Michael Bloomberg and their bought followers. Leave the Constitution alone and follow it as written, the only solution we have. And if we can’t follow it now, what will make them follow the new version?

    • reader

      Article V IS in the Constitution, and it IS in the Constitution FOR A REASON. Again, just read up on something before discussing it.

      • Al Dunaway

        I have read up on it, and I still ask which politicians you would trust. Also, how will you get them to follow it. Also, there is no limit on what they can change, I prefer one amendment at a time to be ratified by the states, not a complete new Communist Constitution. You have obviously not read up on what is being ignored by those in office. As I said, the Constitution is much better as is then with the changes we would get by todays politicians.

        • reader

          I don’t think you did, cause all of this runaway nonsense has been addressed right in there. Just turning pages without understanding the content does not count as reading up on it, you know.

          • Al Dunaway

            You have not answered one question I asked, and I don’t figure you will. Not one of them is covered in this article. I guess you think we should let who ever Soros and Bloomberg buys change our Constitution. You also have not answered how to get these clowns to comply with a new one when they won’t comply with the one we have.

          • reader

            It’s in the book that you did not read, pal. I don’t pretend to do any better in trying explaining it to you better than Levin did. I can send it to you if you can’t afford to spare a few bucks.

    • NAHALKIDES

      Our nation’s history shows that the Constitution does in fact need amending, using language so clear that even Supreme Court Justices can understand it. For example, we have four justices who don’t understand the language of the second Amendment; why not change the language so that even they can’t deny an individual right to bear arms: “Neither the United States or any State shall infringe upon the private citizen’s right to own arms and to use them for his defense, including but not limited to the type of rifles and pistols used by the Armed Forces of the United States, nor shall any criminal background checks be required, nor special identification cards required, nor shall the capacity of ammunition magazines be limited, nor shall any record or registration be kept of gun ownership.”

      Also, we need to have some way to remove Supreme Court Justices who refuse to obey the Constitution – I would suggest that upon being impeached by the House, the people themselves decide the issue in the next election. This is how we make them follow the new version. And if they still won’t obey, it’s time for organized resistance leading to the removal from office, by force if necessary, of the offending politicians.

      • Al Dunaway

        They understand it fine, it just doesn’t fit their agenda to follow it. Much like Adolf Hitler in the 30s. Just like Obama has bypassed Congress with EOs. And any new version will be written by lawyers, doesn’t that give you a warm fuzzy feeling?

      • Al Dunaway

        Obama issues new executive actions on
        background checks for gun purchases

        By Katie Pavlich. January 3rd, 2014
        Article Source

        President Obama has released two new executive actions on background checks for gun purchases. The actions were posted on WhiteHouse.gov Friday afternoon and according to the Department of Justice and Health and Human Services, will make it easier for states to submit mental health information to the federal background check system known as the National Instant Criminal Background Check System or NICS.

        “Today, the Administration is announcing two new executive actions that will help strengthen the federal background check system and keep guns out of the wrong hands. The Department of Justice (DOJ) is proposing a regulation to clarify who is prohibited from possessing a firearm under federal law for reasons related to mental health, and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is issuing a proposed regulation to address barriers preventing states from submitting limited information on those persons to the federal background check system,” the executive action announcement states. “The Administration’s two new executive actions will help ensure that better and more reliable information makes its way into the background check system. The Administration also continues to call on Congress to pass common-sense gun safety legislation and to expand funding to increase access to mental health services.”

        The actions:

        -Some states have noted that the terminology used by federal law to prohibit people from purchasing a firearm for certain mental health reasons is ambiguous. Today, DOJ is issuing a proposed rule to make several clarifications. For example, DOJ is proposing to clarify that the statutory term “committed to a mental institution” includes involuntary inpatient as well as outpatient commitments. In addition to providing general guidance on federal law, these clarifications will help states determine what information should be made accessible to the federal background check system, which will, in turn, strengthen the system’s reliability and effectiveness.

        -Some states have also said that the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act’s (HIPAA) privacy provisions may be preventing them from making relevant information available to the background check system regarding individuals prohibited from purchasing a firearm for mental health reasons. In April 2013, HHS began to identify the scope and extent of the problem, and based on public comments is now issuing a proposed rule to eliminate this barrier by giving certain HIPAA covered entities an express permission to submit to the background check system the limited information necessary to help keep guns out of potentially dangerous hands. The proposed rule will not change the fact that seeking help for mental health problems or getting treatment does not make someone legally prohibited from having a firearm. Furthermore, nothing in the proposed rule would require reporting on general mental health visits or other routine mental health care, or would exempt providers solely performing these treatment services from existing privacy rules.

        While it is important states are easily able to submit mental health information to the federal background check system, changes in HIPAA should come with extreme scrutiny and thought due to a high risk of changes in the law resulting in major privacy violations. Many doctors are already asking patients (and not just those with mental health problems) about whether or not they have a gun in their home, a fine line to walk.

        In the executive action announcement, the White House also urged Congress to pass more gun control measures, some of which Democrats voted no on early last year.

        -While the President and the Vice President continue to do everything they can to reduce gun violence, Congress must also act. Passing common-sense gun safety legislation – including expanding background checks and making gun trafficking a federal crime – remains the most important step we can take to reduce gun violence.The vast majority of Americans support these critical measures, which would protect our children and our communities without infringing on anyone’s Second Amendment rights.

        Always be wary of the phrase “common-sense gun safety,” especially when it comes from gun control advocates. No “common-sense” gun control law has ever reduced crime or mass shootings. If advocates have to tell you they aren’t infringing on your Second Amendment rights, they are probably infringing on your Second Amendment rights. Further, gun trafficking is already a federal offense

  • Janet

    THE STATES MUST GET TOGETHER.
    TERM LIMITS, AND CONFRECES WITH GOVENORS EVERY YEAR.
    AND VOTERS MUST VETTE EVERY CANIDATE. AND GET OUT AND VOTE./
    THE STATES HAVE THE POWER TO TAKE DOWN THIS TYRANNICAL GOVEDRNMENT.

  • FL10th

    Nullification has nothing to do with “breaking up the Union.” Mr. Levin is very quick to label supporters of this rightful remedy as “neo confederates” or “whackos.” Nullification would actually maintain union since unconstitutional federal actions are ignored or subject to non compliance. Nullification by the way is not a willy nilly “we don’t like this” choosing of what to nullify. It is applicable to those items where the federal government has overstepped its bounds beyond what is enumerated to it. As for nullification not being accepted, it has been accepted in every state with medical marijuana and two with recreational marijuana. It has been accepted in every state (there are more than 25) that have rejected REAL ID. There are three states, VA,CA and MI that have signed non compliance with NDAA indefinite detention into law. Non compliance with ACA has been filed in SC and GA, non compliance with NSA filed in KS and AZ. A convention of states and nullification are not either or choices. They do not cancel each other out. Nullification is quicker,particular the non compliance variant. Those of us in the nullification camp are not enemies of a convention of states, nor are we neo confederates or left wing wack jobs. Nullification worked in the early 19th century against the Embargo Acts, it worked in the 1850′s against the Fugitive Slave Acts and it is working today.

  • Liberty_Clinger

    State nullification is the overthrowing of un-Constitutional Federal laws within that particular State – it is not the overthrowing of Constitution-compliant Federal laws. Federal laws which are un-Constitutional (which probably means half of all Federal Laws, regulations and SC decisions) represent Federal nullification of the Constitution, so State nullification of Federal nullification of the Constitution represents State affirmation of the Constitution. This is not rocket science.

  • http://nolp.blogspot.com/ davidfarrar

    An Article V “state convention” is definitely the way forward. To take the first step, voters must vote for only those Congressional candidates who support an Article V convention. Now is the time to take a stand!

    ex animo
    davidfarrar

  • Joe

    Unfortunately, it will take a full Revolution to restore this country. The People have no other viable recourse.

  • Nabuquduriuzhur

    Why would Madeline Allbright write about the loss of representative government in Czechoslovakia, when she was helping a would-be communist like W.J. Clinton?

    We live in an age of hypocrisy, that much is certain. Persons playing a role, not believing in that role.