6 votes

The "Freeman" Delusion

I'm going to argue that the origin of the "freemen-on-the-land" and "sovereign citizen" movements is the following erroneous line of thought:

Premise (a) The government can't violate people's rights unless people have voluntarily ceded their rights to the government

Premise (b) People don't think they've ceded their rights to the government

Premise (c) The government does in fact violate people's rights

THEREFORE, people must have *unwittingly* ceded their rights to the government

The legal theories of the freemen are all about explaining how people have unwittingly ceded their rights to the government. The freemen claim that, behind the plain language of documents like drivers' license applications, there is an esoteric meaning which says that the applicant is ceding his rights to the government. The entire system of "admiralty law" which the freemen have cooked up consists of such invented esoteric interpretations of actual law, designed to explain how people have unwittingly surrendered their rights to the government in various ways.

This entire corpus of fantasy-law is motivated by the desire to explain how people have unwittingly ceded their rights to the government (with corresponding fantasy procedures for getting those rights back). And the belief that people have unwittingly ceded their rights to the government is based on the erroneous line of thinking I outlined above, which is erroneous because Premise (a) is false. The government *can* violate people's rights without them having waived those rights previously. We libertarians might think the government *shouldn't* do so, but the government absolutely is able to do so, and does so constantly. In the final analysis, then, freemanism rests on a confusion between what the law *is* and the what the law *should be*.



Trending on the Web

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

Phishing for suckers, sweet to eat.

There is the old paradox, individuals so stupid they think themselves clever. They are victims of their own gullibility. It's pitiful to see.

Me, I'd rather have honest friends, by being an honest friend. Thanks tech!

Free includes debt-free!

Hey, HAM and NON ...

... I have a suggestion.

Why don't you guys play out a specific situation. HAM got a speeding ticket (also, no license, no registration, no insurance, his windows were tinted too dark, his radio was too loud, and he wasn't wearing a seat belt). ;-)

NON, you are the prosecutor/judge (which is a conflict of interest, but that happens in traffic court every day). You are also the court clerk, in case he wants to file any papers (I have no idea what his strategy is in such a scenario). IOW: you are "the state." Probably the cop, too.

So, HAM ... you got the citation from the cop. What do you do next?

It is pretty easy for me to answer that because I lived

something like that earlier this year.

However my circumstances would be a lot different:

I have no driver license.
I have no registered vehicle.
I traveled the public highway in my own property without obtaining permission of any kind.

I don't really feel like typing out all of the details of the experience but would be receptive to some kind of audio platform to discuss it.

spill your guts

you don't get off that easy. Please do tell, what happened when you were ticketed with no license.

And what exactly do you mean by "I traveled the public highway in my own property without obtaining permission of any kind"...are you saying you own the car you were driving? Or are you saying that you drove around on your own land with no permisssion of any kind? Why are you using such strange language?

I suspect you're full of it. And let's say you're just bad at English, and you drove without a license. That proves nothing, until you've been ticketed and tested it in court. Until then, you're lucky, not right.

It all ends with Bubba.

"Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the the universe."-- Albert Einstein

LoL

Since it is my life and my experience if I don't feel like typing out all the details ... too bad.

I didn't realize "I traveled the public highway in my own property without obtaining permission of any kind" was strange language.

It seems like perfectly normal language to me ...

Have you ever been pulled over by a cop on the highway?

.

"Alas! I believe in the virtue of birds. And it only takes a feather for me to die laughing."

My story, my life

my rules.

=)

You're not willing...

...to tell us about your triumphs in court?

"Alas! I believe in the virtue of birds. And it only takes a feather for me to die laughing."

Maybe

.

Don't let them get your goat.

It's none of their business.

They only want to offer you as proof of their god's powers.

They can't counter your arguments or answer your questions so now they want to discredit you.

Free includes debt-free!

Bubba

made him his beyotch in the county lockup, and all he got was this t-shirt.

Rumor has it Bubba didn't even get out the Barry White tapes.

"Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the the universe."-- Albert Einstein

He doesn't have any

and if he does, it will be told to us in "I said it happened so you have to believe me" fashion. He's full of it and he knows it. That's why he's using such weasely language here. It's a dead giveaway for deception.

I'm done with tools like HAM.

"Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the the universe."-- Albert Einstein

You sure have a lot to say about

something you have no knowledge of.

and you have very little to say

of something you claim to have firsthand experience of!

"Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the the universe."-- Albert Einstein

Why is that

You don't feel like typing? You seem to have a lot of typing capacity, so that rings false. Was it Bubba-llicious?

"Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the the universe."-- Albert Einstein

I'll provide the ending

or several possible endings:

Most likely: He loses, pays fine.

Also possible: His courtroom antics result in him being held in contempt, and more fines + jail time.

Also possible: His courtroom antics result in a warrant being issued, more fines, contempt, anal rape by large roommate named Bubba, free housing, bread, water, and dried carrots.

"Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the the universe."-- Albert Einstein

Just as they can and will

Just as they can and will violate my rights, I can, will, and must violate their unjust laws. That is why I am free.

Here's the deal ...

... this is a topic worth discussing.

The "freemen" proponents are getting at the root of what *is* in a way that is uncomfortable to those who believe a fantasy that what *is* is right.

It is the same as Ron Paul supporters getting at the root of what *is* in a way that is uncomfortable to neo-cons and progressives, who believe in a fantasy of two-party, morally just system of government. It's a fantasy because it is not two parties, it is not morally just, and it is merely people claiming to have powers and enforcing that claim with violence.

Government, per se, is immoral because it is the initiation of force against people who have done no harm. Therefore, the business of "law" is one that is inherently immoral. But it is cloaked in the appearance of morality. The people who are vested in the business must lie to themselves and others in order to mentally turn what is inherently immoral into something THEY perceive as moral -- and especially something they want OTHERS to perceive as moral.

Add to the mix that there is always a certain segment of the population who are sociopaths and psychopaths, and that some of the more intelligent amongst them are drawn to a business where they can harm others and get away with it. Some choose the mafia. Many choose government or law as their means of gratification.

Over time, the real psychos amongst them will attempt to find means to change "the law" in such a way as to gain more control over others, which is what they really want. But they can't come out and admit that (sometimes, even to themselves), so they must cloak it all in high moral ground type rhetoric. Over the years, they have been able to get laws changed in ways that were never intended (see: Federal Reserve Act, NDAA, multiple court decisions, etc.).

So, someone takes a step back to look at this and they realize that the emperor has no clothes. They study what has happened. They go back to what was the BASIS of law in the first place, in an attempt to unravel the mystery.

Tort and contract are the two fundamental building blocks of the common law handed down to Americans from England. England ran mostly on a system of definitions and precedent. Still does, to a large degree. Americans inherited that, and these principles PRE-EXIST the American government.

The Declaration of Independence and the 9th and 10th Amendments to the Constitution support the concept that the fundamental principles are an important part of "the law" and these "freemen" are trying to unravel it all.

Take the case of driving vs. traveling. Although it sounds nuts to our 21st century thinking (and all the brainwashing we got as children, not to mention the brainwashing law students get), "the law" before there were automobiles was that a free person could travel freely without government approval.

There were no passports, no licenses, no approvals from the king, except where there was despotism. In America, no permission was needed. When automobiles were invented, this fundamental law (common law) pre-existed anything the government wanted to do regarding laws.

The early laws regarding autos were ALL about "driver" being a person "employed" to haul people or property on the public roads. There were many court cases that distinguished between "driver" and "traveler." This can be ridiculed by the pro-state folks, but ridicule is not a valid form of debate. The fact is the "law" was what it was at that time.

Some people discovered these older laws and compared them to the current laws and realized they are different. They point this out and people who know nothing of this subject think they are crazy. No, the law DID change. That is a FACT.

So, how did it change -- or seem to change, if in fact it was not done by a lawful process?

It seems (and this is where it gets tough to sort out because of multiple layers) that "the law" was changed in such a way as to be done by deception, and then later judges who either had no clue or were in on the deception went along with court rulings that started to erode the fundamental rights of the people.

For example: Do I have a fundamental and constitutionally-protected right not to be a witness against myself in a criminal case? Yes. Are traffic violations criminal in nature? Yes. Can any information I provide to a police officer be used against me in a court of law? Yes.

So, then ... how can I be compelled to give ANY testimony, or ANY documentation to a police officer during a traffic stop? How can I be forced under penalty by the government to give a driver's license or proof of insurance if that information can be used against me in a court of law? The Constitution says that no state can pass ANY law that is contrary to the Constitution, so it is irrelevant what the state bureaucrats WANT to do. The only thing relevant is what the law IS -- and the Constitution is the supreme law, and it is based on the fundamental law that still exists, due to the 9th Amendment (that little pesky amendment that lawyers and judges and professors and politicians NEVER want to discuss).

But the lawyers and judges IGNORE the laws that they don't like. And THAT is the problem that the "freemen" are trying to sort out.

I can VOLUNTEER information to a police officer, but if it is MANDATORY and that information CAN be used against me, then it is a violation of my fundamental rights, and also the 5th Amendment. This is a problem for the state, and the sociopaths who want to violate my fundamental right to travel freely so long as I harm no one.

How can that be squared up? It cannot. And that is the basic problem.

In traffic "law," I think the best information I've come across is the idea that the laws were changed by the states and feds teaming up to usurp the fundamental law, through highway traffic funds and similar programs. They have done this by way of feds giving money to the states (which in and of itself is unconstitutional), and passing "joint laws" that appear to be "state laws" in a quasi-extra-jurisdiction that is not understood even by lawyers and judges (or most of the politicians who vote on them). This is why you sometimes see "freemen" quoting federal law where it seems that only state law should apply.

Here is a website of a guy who dissects the Illinois traffic code using this theory. Looks like he wrote it several years ago and never finished, but the idea and reasoning is there.

I think he is on to something:

https://markmccoy.wordpress.com/2012/03/04/disecting-the-ill...

If the freemen...

...wanted to combat modern statutes using common law, they would argue that a statute contradicts some part of common law, and that the latter is still operative and has primacy. But that's not what they're doing. Rather, they take some statute and attempt to radically redefine its meaning, redefining specific words like "security" on the basis of random bits from common law or other sources, and argue that the statute actually means something entirely contrary to what it plainly means and what it was intended to mean.

"Alas! I believe in the virtue of birds. And it only takes a feather for me to die laughing."

The problem is ...

... that there are "freemen" and then there are "Freemen" and then there are "FREEMEN" and then there are fREEMEN," and then there are "sovereigns" and then there are "Sovereigns" and then there are ... you get the point.

There are many different theories from different people and they don't all agree.

I agree with you that many (most?) are complete bullshti. Some of it is made up. Some of it references religious doctrine and whatever else might get thrown into the mix.

But that does not change the fact that there is something wrong with the legal system. There is something that does not add up, and it has to do with usurpation of power, by the feds and the states, by the legislative, executive and judicial. It has been going on a long time.

If the Constitution says I cannot be compelled to be a witness against myself, and the common law principles say that I am free to travel without government approval on the public roads, and there are court cases that say the same and even say that this principle cannot be legislated away by the states, then how is it that I can be compelled to produce any particular paperwork by a roadside cop who has not witnessed, nor has any evidence, that I have committed a crime?

How does the "motor vehicle code" square with the 5th Amendment and Article 6 of the Constitution? How can a California cop, who wrote the ticket (and is therefore the only witness), also act as "prosecutor" for the state, and somehow not result in a conflict of interest and a violation of the common law principle of due process?

How can a statute define "drive" as one who is employed to carry passengers on the public roads morph into a different definition without repealing the act, when the state constitution says it must? And how can any such statute be enforced in courts when it conflicts with higher court decisions that say the opposite?

And how can it be that judges are rarely, if ever, held accountable in any meaningful way when they ignore laws they don't like, ignore evidence they don't like, and run roughshod over "rights" that they claim to uphold?

This is where the "freemen" are coming from (most of them), even if they have not found a way to articulate it, or even found the specific evidence that they suspect is out there.

If it weren't for some "crazy rantings" by a "freeman" a few years ago, I would never have learned a lot of the things I have within the liberty movement as a whole.

Although YOU seem to be a decent person and seem to handle these discussions with class (and I KNOW it is frustrating to deal with some seemingly lunatic rantings), I also have encountered FAR MORE people on your side of this debate in all of this who are complete a$$holes -- which is bad enough, but there is nothing worse than an a$$hole who thinks he knows what the debate is about when in fact he has no clue because he's too damn lazy and arrogant to take a moment to figure out what the argument really is.

You have no argument

You have no point. Right to travel does not mean the right to drive. There is common law, on this point and it is against you. By following common law, you lose. It is you who are too lazy. You don't get a proper education in a subject, but hold yourself out as an expert based on unfinished websites and youtube videos. You've clearly not tested your theory in court either.

Was there at some point case law which said what you want? Perhaps. It just is no longer current. And, our legislatures have enacted laws which supersede a lot of the old statutes,and, yes, they are laws. I've been debunking you guys for years, even before I started practicing. So if you think it makes me a total whole because I tell you the truth you don't want to hear, I can live with that. Unlike your lazy self, I may get paid, legitimately, for my knowledge on the issue someday. I may even write a book about it.

I know you think you've got knowledge, but you don't. I know you think you've studied it adequately, but you haven't. I know there is a side industry of kooks and charlatans who tell you what you want to hear, for a price- or as bait to get you to buy nonsense. In the real world, it's all fake. If it weren't, it would not be so secret. That you can't figure this out from the git go shows a lack of discernment. Unless you're just another con man.

Sincerely, Superchicken, or whatever my name is this week!

"Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the the universe."-- Albert Einstein

That's a fair point...

...perhaps I am lumping them all together inappropriately. As for something being wrong with the legal system, and governments wantonly violating the law, no argument here.

"Alas! I believe in the virtue of birds. And it only takes a feather for me to die laughing."

That is not what they do ...

If someone is claiming a code or statue applies they simply demand that it be proven not presumed by producing a competent witness willing to testify under oath or affirmation to first hand knowledge of something seen or heard to form a fact that can be relied upon a code or statute applies.

I don't think anyone really cares what some words on a piece of paper mean because words on pieces of paper are not magical. The only time word debates happen is wherever attorneys are because they are obsessed with words as if they are magical.

.

"If someone is claiming a code or statue applies they simply demand that it be proven not presumed by producing a competent witness willing to testify under oath or affirmation to first hand knowledge of something seen or heard to form a fact that can be relied upon a code or statute applies."

I don't know what that's supposed to mean, it's not even a sentence.

P.S. I might add, in relation to *all* of your posts, muddled writing is often a sign of muddled thinking.

"Alas! I believe in the virtue of birds. And it only takes a feather for me to die laughing."

I'll go one step further

The subject of muddled wording of things often comes up in lawsuits. It is a sign of evasion in a witness. People who perpetrate frauds often use terrible grammar...it's par for the course for these guys to do it.

"Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the the universe."-- Albert Einstein

If it is muddled perhaps you should look in a mirror to find

any mud.

What facts are relied upon to determine any code or statute applies?

Facts that can be relied upon are derived from a competent witness testifying under oath or affirmation to something seen or heard. The reason for that is anyone can say or claim anything.

If someone is claiming ... who claims?

a code or statute applies ... what code or statute?

they simply demand ... who demands?

that it be proven not presumed ... what entity presumes jurisdiction because codes or statutes apply?

by producing a competent witness ... what constitutes a competent witness?

willing to testify ... what constitutes testifying?

to first hand knowledge of something seen or heard ... what constitutes first hand knowledge?

to form a fact that can be relied upon ... what constitutes a fact?

a code or statute applies ... applies to?

P.S. You must be really fond of word games ...

.

"What facts are relied upon to determine any code or statute applies?"

Again, not a sentence. Is English your native language? Anyway, what I can't figure out is what you mean when you suggest that a fact can determine whether a code or statute applies. Do you mean, for instance, that to see whether the income tax applies to Bob, it has to be proven that Bob has income? If so, well then yea, obviously, who claims otherwise? But I take it you mean something else, something far more wild and crazy and ridiculous, and I can't wait to hear it.

"Alas! I believe in the virtue of birds. And it only takes a feather for me to die laughing."

You really have to appreciate the kind of delusional people

who like word games.

Shall we analyze this claim?

What facts are relied upon to determine any code or statute applies?

"Again, not a sentence ..."

Really? That is not a complete sentence? To top it off ...

"Is English your native language?"

Priceless.

Here we go ...

What constitutes a sentence since apparently I don't know how to write one and I want to understand how to form a "correct" sentence?

You're a funny guy...

"What facts are relied upon to determine any code or statute applies?"

Not a sentence

"What facts are relied upon to determine whether any code or statute applies?"

Sentence

;-)

...now that I've given you your daily grammar lesson, would you please answer my question and explain what you mean when you say that a fact can determine whether a code/statute applies?

"Alas! I believe in the virtue of birds. And it only takes a feather for me to die laughing."