THE DAILY REFORMER (NEW YORK, UNITED STATES)
The idea of a “failed state” is not something most of us give much thought to. If it has crossed our mind at all, we were likely reading our own State Department reporting on one of the more unfortunate nations somewhere in the less-developed world.
You know, a place that is disease-ridden, one where the government seems to have different standards of justice, depending upon who you are, who you know, or how much money you give to those in power.
Failing states are places governed by corrupt politicians who control the media and sometimes the internet, officials who always seem to be reelected – no matter how horrible the living conditions in their country have become for citizens, or how much money they steal for themselves. Venezuela comes to mind, but certainly not Canada … or the United States.
Failed states are quick to arrest and prosecute citizens who dare to defend their lives and property against criminal violence, while protected political groups and organized gangs are free to extort, rob, rape and murder citizens, secure in the knowledge that their members will never be prosecuted.
One of the hallmarks of failed states is that they have elections, but the votes of citizens are meaningless. The current regime is always reelected. This happens either because there is no meaningful (or long-lived) opposition candidate, no real discussion of the issues (media control), and the ruling political party runs the machinery that counts the votes.
Do I have your attention yet? Did you think it would never happen here?
Would it surprise you that America’s Constitution actually has a clause that deals with failed states? They weren’t talking about Venezuela. What they were thinking about was states that might want to be a part of the United States, but with a form of government that was different than republican.
“Hey, man! What are you talking about? It can be either Democrat or Republican!”
That’s true! It could even be Libertarian, Independent, Green or Purple. But for the government to be “small-r” republican, power must flow from the people to those who run the place. The state must hold fair and impartial elections to determine which people become its officials. That’s why we refer to them as “elected officials” and not monarchs or dictators.
In America, a republican form of government consists of three separate centers of power (separation of powers): A legislature drawn from the citizens meets to make the laws and set penalties for infractions; a court system exists to determine individual guilt or innocence with regard to a particular person and particular law; an executive (we call them governors) is elected to execute the laws passed by the legislature (run the daily machinery of government). Without this you have a dictatorship: A governor who makes the law, determines the penalties and enforces edicts upon the citizens is a dictator or a monarch, not the state’s executive.
“Yeah, well what are you gonna do about it, man? They’re just gonna do whatever they want!”
That’s what makes Article IV, Section 4, of our Constitution so interesting: It doesn’t say who guarantees a republican form of government; only that each state shall have one. The U.S. Supreme Court had two opportunities to become involved in having a say in this, but it declined both times. The court said it was a matter either for the Congress or the president.
If you’re tracking with me here, you will see that there are no rules about how a republican form of government is achieved once a state has failed, but the federal government still has an obligation to fix the failure and return the state to a republican form of government.
Congress has every right to step in and change the government of any state that has failed to provide a republican form of government to its citizens. So does the president. Neither Congress nor the president needs an invitation. Nor is there any guidance given on how to achieve the desired end.
Do you see where this is going?
- Some states did well in handling this election. Some didn’t.
- Some states did well in handling the unexpected introduction of COVID-19 into their state. Some didn’t.
- Some cities did well at protecting their businesses and residents from anarchists and rioters. Some didn’t.
- Some mayors let their cities burn, while others called for help from the governor.
- Some governors called the president for help when police were overrun. Some didn’t.
- Some district attorneys charged and prosecuted rioters and violence. Some played catch and release with a favored class of people.
Everybody wants to be invited in to help fix a problem, because an invitation spreads the risk around if there is a bad outcome. But not all invitations have to come from the governor. States have lots of elected officials: sheriffs, city councils, county commissioners, school boards, judges, prosecutors and, lest we forget, our particular member of our state legislature.
States and communities all have people who are influencers, too. Business people, chambers of commerce, pastors and churches, granges, employers, veterans groups. You can add more from your own area.
I don’t know how the president would receive such an invitation from any of us. But I can tell you that elected officials, regardless of how lowly their position may seem, carry more weight in any kind of effort like this. County commissioners know other county commissioners. They know state legislators. They all represent many other citizens. Thus their pleas for help are going to carry more weight than individual citizens. Also, formal pleas for help from elected governing bodies carry more weight than individual elected officials.
A request for help following a vote of a state legislature would be the strongest invitation (if the governor opposes intervention). But even a request for help from a few members of a state legislature will get lots of attention.
But if you live in a failed state, just what are you requesting? I’ve called it “Constitutional Receivership.” It’s a term from the business world, not as severe as bankruptcy (although it can lead there).
A state placed into Constitutional Receivership by the president would have someone assigned to run the state’s affairs and clean things up until new leadership could be elected by the citizens.
If there were riots, the Receiver would call for the National Guard to restore order. If there were corrupt elections, the Receiver would launch an investigation, probably in conjunction with the U.S. attorney for that state. The guilty would face trial and be sent to prison for their crimes. There are a lot of federal assets a Receiver would have immediate access to, and without the say-so of state officials.
Corrupt or incompetent businesses aren’t allowed to go on forever. They are either turned around by a Receiver, or their assets are disposed of in bankruptcy and given to their creditors. Article IV, Section 4, can be used this way.
Corrupt, one-party rule is not a sustainable future. Some states have public employees being paid insane salaries; most public employee pension funds will never be able to pay their promised benefits. Why? Because the party in power is spending the money that should be going into the pension fund to buy an extension of their power at every election.
So-called battleground states now control the national elections through corrupt election practices in just their states. Secret voting agreements with one political party, vote-switching machines entrusted with providing honest totals that are pre-programed for the desired election outcome, and counting rooms with the opposition party’s monitors placed at impossible observation distances or completely removed during the vote counting process. The level of corruption in the media, big tech and most blue states election efforts indicates there will never be another chance to change this. Their corruption threatens the very existence of the American republic.
As President Trump has said on numerous occasions, “This can never be allowed to happen to another president, ever again!” I would add, “This can never be allowed to happen to another citizen, ever again,” as well.
Whether it does happen again depends on what we do to stop it now. Forget social media for now. Talk to your friends and neighbors. Find the influencers in your community. Meet with your public officials. Get the ball rolling, today. We owe it to our posterity. We owe it to those who sacrificed so much to give us a republic, not a monarchy or a dictatorship. Will you call for Constitutional Receivership now? There won’t be another chance.
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