July 23, 2010
The Coming Nullification Non-CrisisBy D.L. Adams
The radical, and so far ineffectual but significantly costly, programs and policies of the current resident of the White House suggest that a new "Nullification Crisis" will soon be upon us -- not on account of sectional or partisan motives, and this time for the entire nation.
This new Nullification "Crisis" will be measured by how much damage now being caused can be reversed. Our first true Nullification Crisis occurred in 1832 over tariffs and was resolved by political compromises and threats of force against South Carolina by then-President Andrew Jackson.
The 1832 controversy culminated in South Carolina's "Ordnance of Nullification," which nullified specific federal tariffs in that state. Over time, this crisis would set the stage for secession and the American Civil War. It should not be surprising to later analysts that South Carolina was the first state to secede.
It is significant that the state around which Nullification swirled in 1832 was also the first state to declare its independence from the Federal Union in 1860. The rejection of federal authority by South Carolina in 1832 was the dangerous precedent for later comprehensive nullification, which was the 1860 "Ordnance of Secession."
The coming nullification "crisis" will be very different. It will be a national rejection of societal self-destruction. This coming "crisis" will be no crisis at all, but rather a restatement of our national identity and a re-appreciation of our foundational concepts as laid out in our Constitution and Bill of Rights.
"Post-historical" is a popular concept on the American political left. It is the belief that history can be "reset" and that we can escape from historical precedent and context. The fall of Soviet Communism in 1989 validated this concept for many so-called "intellectuals," who have yet to repudiate it. They will eventually have no option -- because it is not true.
The next presidential election should be about nothing short of nullification: review, re-assessment, and repeal (when necessary) of almost every foreign policy and domestic initiative of the current administration. The opposition candidate should propose during the upcoming campaign, and follow through during his/her term(s) in office, that all laws passed during this administration be reviewed for constitutionality and practical/fiscal feasibility and overturned/nullified/repealed through a rapid repeal process via Congress.
This reversal would also involve foreign policy initiatives including the negative posture toward our traditional allies, specifically Israel, and our new genuflection toward Islamic states, their ideology, and their self-aggrandizing purposes.
Our two current costly wars must be rapidly reexamined by the new leadership in light of the constitutions of both Iraq and Afghanistan, which proclaim that both are Islamic states under Islamic law. Islamic law is fundamentally and diametrically opposed to our concepts of freedom, justice, and tolerance. If and when we declare "victory" in either or both wars, what can success look like when both states are founded upon Islamic Sharia? "Victory" would then be failure; this inverted situation should be entirely unacceptable and a terrible scandal for every American.
Our national unemployment rate continues to hover at 10% almost a year after trillions were spent on economic "stimulus."
The so-called "health care bill" represents a restructuring of health care insurance and access over which few are sanguine; the fact that few lawmakers claim to have read the thousands of pages in the bill prior to casting their "in favor" votes should cause great alarm. The so-called "health care bill" must be reviewed and repealed in its entirety if necessary, and the process of health care reform must be restarted to reach a rational and equitable and affordable conclusion.
Our immigration and border laws must be enforced. States that enforce these laws on their own, like Arizona, to secure their borders must be applauded and supported for doing the critically important work that the federal authority is mandated to do -- but is not doing.
The failure of the federal government to secure the Arizona border in particular, especially during time of war, is a potentially disastrous situation and is certainly a constitutional crisis, though few apparently now see it as such.
The tepid response by our political leadership to the greatest ecological disaster in American history in the Gulf of Mexico with vacations, golf outings, and other fun activities while Americans in the region lose their livelihoods and the environment is destroyed is indicative of a fundamental disconnect between leadership and the people. Self-indulgent, distracted leaders undermine our democracy.
The election of 2012 will be the next Nullification "Crisis"; a redemptive non-crisis created out of real crises.
We should have effective health care and better availability; we should have rational foreign policy; we should have economic recovery and growth; we should and must have justice and opportunity for Americans and for our friends; we must have secure borders and enforced immigration laws. These things we must and can have within a constitutional framework.
The opposition candidate in our next presidential election should reestablish our national connection with our Constitution and Bill of Rights. The new "nullification movement" should be a renewal of respect for the Constitution and its importance in American life and government. We are obligated by our history and are responsible to future generations, as well as to people today, to firmly uphold our foundational concepts and the guarantees of liberty which they promise.
The opposition candidate who is a nullifier, a "repealer," and a constitutionalist will touch a deep chord in the hearts of all rational Americans and will win the election. There is a deep connection between the American people and their Constitution not now apparently understood by the majority of our leadership.
The new Nullification Non-Crisis will not be a crisis at all -- it will likely be a celebration of our Constitution and foundational documents, and the ideas of freedom, justice, and opportunity for all that they represent.