Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Freedom of speech apparently doesn't apply to criticizing judicial tyrants

I've previously written before that freedom of thought is most dangerous to the state. Michigan's Supreme Court proved it today.

Some people have low opinions of Geoffrey Fieger, whose name was unfamiliar to me even as Jack Kevorkian's attorney. When a Michigan appeals court overturned a ruling in favor of Fieger's client, Fieger publicly called them "jackasses" and compared them to Hitler and the Nazis. While insulting, such words far from approach slander. Nonetheless, those judges wouldn't stand for it; apparently they never heard the old phrase about "sticks and stones." They took it up with the Michigan Supreme Court, who today reprimanded Fieger for his words.

The guy could be a real schmuck for all I know, but Fieger's personal character, his choice of clientele, and his conduct in court are irrelevant. He still has every right to state his own low opinion of any public official, even if they are, and actually I should say especially if they are judges. I myself was unlawfully threatened by the corrupt judge of a small town's "justice court," so I take it very personally when courts exceed their proper authority as derived from the people.

John Locke was the most influential architect of the principle that government derives its powers from the people. Jefferson put it more specifically in the Declaration of Independence that the people must be willing:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed,
Frédéric Bastiat elaborated even more in The Law:
If every person has the right to defend even by force—his person, his liberty, and his property, then it follows that a group of men have the right to organize and support a common force to protect these rights constantly. Thus the principle of collective right—its reason for existing, its lawfulness—is based on individual right. And the common force that protects this collective right cannot logically have any other purpose or any other mission than that for which it acts as a substitute. Thus, since an individual cannot lawfully use force against the person, liberty, or property of another individual, then the common force—for the same reason—cannot lawfully be used to destroy the person, liberty, or property of individuals or groups.

Such a perversion of force would be, in both cases, contrary to our premise. Force has been given to us to defend our own individual rights. Who will dare to say that force has been given to us to destroy the equal rights of our brothers? Since no individual acting separately can lawfully use force to destroy the rights of others, does it not logically follow that the same principle also applies to the common force that is nothing more than the organized combination of the individual forces?
You and I can have whatever opinion we wish of Geoffrey Fieger, but 300 million Americans or even 6 billion humans still have no right to use government to censure, reprimand or otherwise "scold" someone, regardless of how alone he is in his opinions, and regardless of how hateful and/or stupid his comments are. (As I said, slander is a different issue, but "jackass" and "Nazi" are hardly slander.)

Judges should and do exercise control in their courtroom, which is for a practical reason: you can't just have people blurting out whatever they want, whenever they want. Their authority ends at the courtroom's edges, though, but tyrants never recognize limitations anyhow. Are these judges of such weak character, morality and competence that they can't tolerate anyone criticizing them in public? (Notwithstanding that police are known to abuse "noise ordinances" to forcibly disperse peaceful protests against government.) Well, they proved Fieger is completely correct: from the moment they sought to punish Fieger for his speech, the judges proved that they indeed are jackasses, and that they are Nazis.

Tyranny comes at us from every part of government, and these judges, executives and their police thugs, and legislators only grow more emboldened when we, the people, show more apathy. We're too busy, it doesn't involve us anyway, and it's not like Fieger got into serious trouble, right? So goes our rationalization; so goes our error in letting these matters slide. Fieger isn't being fined, let alone being sent to jail, but it's the principle of the matter. I don't agree with everything the ACLU does, but I hope they'll defend him in this matter (if they're not already).

At what point will we realize that enough is enough? At what point will we realize that we don't need to be in the majority to fight back? At what point will we remember that we still have great powers over government? If government did not fear us, then it would not use sublety and subterfuge to eat away slowly at our liberty. It has been said, "I love my country but fear my government." Indeed, fear what government can do you to, but don't forget we can also make government fear what we can do to it! So all is not lost. It only takes the courage to fight for the rights that God gave us.

Remember that the American colonials started their grumbles over the principle of a mere three-pence tax per pound of tea. However, only about a third of them were willing to do something about it. Yet it only took that third to decide that it was their fight, that they weren't "too busy" to fight for real freedom -- which they won for everyone else.

Storm's coming, people. We don't know the day, nor the hour, but watch for the signs.


Anonymous jk said...

I appreciate your passion and, as your example illustrates, we have indeed lost much liberty.

I' choose, however, to not join your tea party because of the War. I'm generally a supporter of the current administration. They have done many things with which I disagree, but I watch their opposition simply not get it -- in a fight with those who distain our liberties, arguments at the periphery seem small.

As I would oppose that from political adversaries, I must also resist your more philosophical concern. There is certainly a time to resist state authority and assert the interstice of control. At this time, I'm not too keen on doing it -- am I wimping out?

Wednesday, August 02, 2006 4:42:00 PM  

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