8 Signs that the US Government is Making it Harder For You to Become an Expat

By Susan Beverley / Aug 11 • Categorized as Living Overseas

Have the terrorists won?

One of the most common reasons for wanting to expatriate from the United States is the concern about government overreach. Many feel that the expansion of government in recent years has been chipping away at the freedom and liberty that the country was founded upon. What with more and more agencies, regulations, surveillance, and mandates, the right to privacy and self-determination is steadily shrinking right along with financial outlooks.

So, are you among the increasing number of people who feel that the only real solution is to get out of the country? Well, using the exact same tactics that are driving you away, the government appears intent on preventing you from leaving. Changes that have recently been put in place as well as proposals for future changes in rules and regulations might be intended to discourage. But they might also drive your resolve to take your destiny into your own hands and do whatever it takes to make your move overseas.

1. Escalating Cost of Passports

From $35 a few years ago the fee for a US passport has ballooned to today’s $135 for adults (16 and older) and $105 for minors. Renewals cost $110. If you need it in a hurry, there is another $60 expediting fee, and you have to provide a preaddressed prepaid express mail envelope, if you want it back in less than the 6-8 weeks required. The Passport Agency of the Department of State in 2010 issued 13,883,129 passports as well as 1,596,485 items of a new product called the “passport card,” which is good for reentry from anywhere within the Western Hemisphere. This product, which costs $55 for adults, $30 for previous adult passport holders, and $40 for all minors, was created at the behest of heavy lobbying by the cruise industry.

2. Proposed Biographical Questionnaire

In February 2011, the US Department of State proposed the use of a new biographical questionnaire “to supplement the DS-11 only when the applicant submits citizenship or identity evidence that is insufficient to meet his/her burden of proving citizenship or identity.” The estimated burden to fill out proposed Form DS-5513 is 45 minutes, but such details as your mother’s places of residence one year before, at the time of, and one year after your birth are only the beginning of a long list of obscure information that it would be impossible to ascertain in that amount of time or possibly any amount of time. Despite the State Department’s reassurances that it is all about preventing terrorists and other treasonous individuals from gaining US passports, this is very problematic because an unapproved version of the form is already being used to deny passports to US citizens, and there are no set guidelines as to who will to be subjected to it.

3. Air Travel Difficulties

In their supposed pursuit of would-be terrorists and other criminals, the US authorities have overreached their jurisdiction. Recently they forced an international flight from Europe to Mexico to land in the US because one of the online gambling impresarios from Costa Rica was on board. But violation of international law and sovereignty has become an everyday occurrence.

In another recent case, a flight from Mexico to Spain was denied access to American airspace and turned back ninety minutes after takeoff because a Mexican citizen who was once accused of involvement in a guerilla uprising in Bolivia was on board. She suspects that she is on the infamous passenger blacklist. But it is kept secret, so there is neither a way for travelers to find out if they are on the list nor any way to clear their names.

 

4. Airport Security

One of the most glaring cases of government overreach is of course that of the highly invasive “enhanced screening procedures.” If having to remove shoes and belts to walk through metal detectors and being subjected to the Advanced Imaging Technology units were not degrading enough, “anomalies,” refusals to enter the unit, or metal detection alarms require further thorough pat downs that are justifiably upsetting.

But think twice about complaining. Behavior Detection Officers are stationed at the security checkpoints to watch for “behavioral indicators” such as stress or fear. Other indicators that they look for are attitudes toward security, so anger and resentment about having to surrender the right to privacy becomes the evidence for why your right to privacy should be surrendered. The circular reasoning is dizzying.

5. World wide of invasion of privacy

Whilst outrage over TSA airport screening has amplified the accusations of government tyranny, little is being said about the NSA’s continuing surveillance of electronic data – domestic emails, Internet searches, and social network activities. The USA Patriot Act also gives the NSA the power to conduct surveillance of domestic financial information such as bank transfers and credit card transactions as well as travel and telephone records, and the World Wide Web has globalized their reach. Some may excuse these unconstitutional invasions of privacy as being necessary in these dangerous times, where anyone who is not engaged in illegal activities should have nothing to hide. But again, the arbitrariness and the potential for abuse of power based on private information gleaned from all this surveillance can be yet another impediment to freedom of movement and the right of individuals, wherever they are on the globe, to conduct their lives without the constant fear of interference from Big Brother.

6. Taxation of foreign income

By taxing foreign income, the United States considers all citizens, wherever they are in the world, as subject to taxation. There are foreign earned income exclusions and foreign tax credits, but they only apply when you either spend 330 days abroad earning your income or you meet the bona fide residency test by proving that your principal residence is in a foreign country for at least one full tax year beginning on January 1.

A strangely named provision called the Tax Increase Prevention and Reconciliation Act (TIPRA), enacted in May 2006, actually raised the amount of taxes due after the foreign earned income exclusion. The changes brought by TIPRA also capped housing allowances, affecting those in higher cost housing markets the most.

7. Financial reporting requirements

According to American Citizens Abroad, US requirements for banks both foreign and domestic have turned expats into “toxic citizens.” A law incorporated into the 2010 Hiring Incentives to Restore Employment Act (HIRE Act) has caused foreign banks and financial institutions to deny services to US citizens because of intrusions by the US government that make servicing those accounts too difficult and burdensome. The Foreign Bank and Financial Account Form (FBAR) calls for foreign institutions to submit account details of all Americans with a cumulative balance over $10,000 at any point during the year to the US Treasury or face major withholding penalties on their US assets. The result has been that many American’s accounts have been closed.

Yet, Title III of the USA Patriot Act, known as the “International Money Laundering Abatement and Financial Anti-Terrorism Act of 2001” enacted requirements concerning how US banks verify their clients’ identities, making it more difficult for those without a permanent US address to maintain accounts from abroad.

The right to privacy in financial matters has been further invaded by new banking rules that the United States has been pushing for through the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. The OECD compiled a blacklist of countries it deemed “uncooperative tax havens.” To be removed from the list, these countries were required to sign bilateral tax information-sharing treaties with other countries and adhere to an international taxation standard that is eliminating privacy in banking everywhere in the world.

Then there is the requirement to report the amount of money you are taking out of the country to the US government. Here is the text from the Customs and Border Protection website:

You may bring into or take out of the country, including by mail, as much money as you wish. However, if it is more than $10,000, you will need to report it to CBP. Ask the CBP officer for the Currency Reporting Form (FinCen 105). The penalties for non-compliance can be severe.

 

“Money” means monetary instruments and includes U.S. or foreign coins currently in circulation, currency, and travelers’ checks in any form, money orders, and negotiable instruments or investment securities in bearer form.

This requirement goes back to when President Nixon removed the last vestiges of the Gold Standard from the US currency in 1971. The explanation for it is that drug dealers were taking millions in illicit gains out of the country. Threats of fines work on institutions, but as for drug dealers, I can just see them declaring those suitcases of money out of fear of a fine.

This rule affects mostly people wanting to move abroad for a better and freer way of life. But when you fill in that FinCen 105, you immediately draw attention to yourself. If you want to take your fortune out in the form of cashier’s checks or bearer bonds, and you declare it, you will probably end up being detained while the CBP calls your accountant and your bank to have them send proof of it being legal and properly taxed.

All of these requirements, along with all the documentation necessary for expats to pay their taxes (the guide to the Foreign Tax Credit for Individuals is 39 pages long), constitute major bureaucratic hurdles to living and working overseas.

8. The IRS is becoming even more aggressive

The IRS was not satisfied with the power it already wielded over international financial institutions, so the government has recently been instituting and considering even more aggressive measures for collecting taxes on Americans who wish to live and keep their assets overseas.

One such measure being considered by the Justice Department is whether it can apply FBAR penalties on foreign banks and institutions that they determine to have violated US tax laws. While the $780 million in fines that Swiss banking giant UBS paid in 2009 were for selling illegal offshore financial products to Americans, the FBAR penalties would dwarf this amount.

Federal prosecutors are already going after a former Credit Suisse banker for $19 million in FBAR penalties for personally aiding and abetting American clients who failed to disclose their foreign accounts to the US government.

Another onerous tactic that the US government is considering is to deny passports from citizens with unpaid taxes.

A farewell gift

So if you have had enough of the US government imposing its will on you, treating you as if you were a terrorist, infringing on your rights and limiting your freedoms, enslaving you with its crushing debt, and impeding your ability to live and work abroad, and you have decided once and for all to renounce your citizenship, you will have to fork out $450 to the US government for this irrevocable privilege. But be aware that under Section 212(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, if the Attorney General decides that the renunciation was undertaken to avoid paying taxes, you are ineligible for a visa or admission back into the United States.

All in all, it appears that the terrorists of September 11, 2001, whoever they were, have won. You get to stay put in the US so they know where to come and get you next time.

About the author: Susan Beverley is a writer and editor for Escape From America Magazine and also writes for and maintains Expat Daily News – the expat news blog for EscapeArtist.com.  She traveled extensively before becoming an expat herself having found a place to call home in South America where she has lived since 2005.  She understands the concerns, needs and difficulties that expats face from first-hand experience and is dedicated to supporting and encouraging anyone who is looking for a new nation to call home. [ send her an email ]

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Ron Paul: Liberty is More Important Than the Illusion of Safety

Ron Paul: Liberty is More Important Than the Illusion of Safety

Ron Paul

Aug 23, 2011

Recent incidents of violence in Norway and London have made us understandably uncomfortable here at home, as many fear that a worsening economy will lead to violence and unrest in American cities. This is why Congress must view the economy as its first priority and a matter of national security: unless and until we get our fiscal house in order to foster economic growth, civil society will continue to deteriorate.

The fundamental lesson every American should learn from these incidents is that government cannot protect us. No matter how many laws we pass, no matter how many police or federal agents we put on the streets, a determined individual or group can still cause great harm. Both Norway and England have strict gun control laws, and London in particular has security cameras monitoring nearly all public areas. But laws and spy cameras are useless in the face of lawless mobs or sick mass killers. Only private individuals on the scene could have prevented or lessened these tragedies. And we should remember that theft, arson, and property damage were not the only criminal acts in London–innocent bystanders were assaulted and killed as well. In those instances deadly force used in self-defense would have been fully justified.

Perhaps the only good that can come from these terrible events is a reinforced understanding that we as individuals are responsible for our safety and the safety of our families. This means, frankly, that we must safely own and use firearms to deter or prevent criminal assaults on our homes and persons. It is absurd to think police or government agents can protect 310 million Americans around the clock.

Thanks to our media and many government officials, however, Americans have become conditioned to view the state as our protector and the solution to every problem. Whenever something terrible happens, especially when it becomes a prominent news story, people reflexively demand that government do something. This impulse almost always leads to bad laws, more debt, and the loss of liberty. It is completely at odds with the best American traditions of self-reliance and individual responsibility.

Do we really want to live in a world of police checkpoints, surveillance cameras, and metal detectors? Do we want to imprison every disturbed or alienated individual who fantasizes about violence? Do we really believe government can provide total security? Or can we accept that liberty is more important than the illusion of state-provided security?

Freedom is not defined by safety. Freedom is defined by the ability of citizens to live without government interference unless they use force or fraud against others. Government cannot create a world without risks, nor would we really wish to live in such a fictional place. Only a totalitarian society would even claim absolute safety as a worthy ideal, because it would require total state control over its citizens’ lives. Liberty has meaning only if we still believe in it when terrible things happen and a false government security blanket beckons.

More Blank Checks to the Military Industrial Complex


by Ron Paul

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Congress, with its insatiable appetite for spending, is set to pass yet another “supplemental” appropriations bill in the next two weeks. So-called supplemental bills allow Congress to spend beyond even the 13 annual appropriations bills that fund the federal government. These are akin to a family that consistently outspends its budget, and therefore needs to use a credit card to make it through the end of the month.

If the American people want Congress to spend less, putting an end to supplemental appropriations bills would be a start. The 13 “regular” appropriations bills fund every branch, department, agency, and program of the federal government. Congress should place every dollar in plain view among those 13 bills. Instead, supplemental spending bills serve as a sneaky way for Congress to spend extra money that was not projected in budget forecasts. Once rare, they have become commonplace vehicles for deficit spending.

The latest supplemental bill is touted as an “emergency” war-spending bill, needed to fund our ongoing conflicts in the Middle East. The emergencies never seem to end, however, and Congress passes one military supplemental bill after another as the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan drag on.

Many of my colleagues argue that Congress cannot put a price on our sacred national security, and I agree that the strong, unequivocal defense of our country is a top priority. There comes a time, however, when we must take stock of what our blank checks to the military–industrial complex accomplish for us, and where the true threats to American citizens lie.

The smokescreen debate over earmarks demonstrates how we have lost perspective when it comes to military spending. Earmarks constitute about $11 billion of the latest budget. This sounds like a lot of money, and it is, but it is a drop in the bucket compared to the $708 billion spent by the Pentagon this year to expand our worldwide military presence. The total expenditures to maintain our world empire is approximately $1 trillion annually, which is roughly what the entire federal budget was in 1990!

We spend more on defense than the rest of the world combined, and far more than we spent during the Cold War. These expenditures in many cases foment resentment that does not make us safer, but instead makes us a target. We referee and arm conflicts the world over, and have troops in some 140 countries with over 700 military bases.

With this enormous amount of money and energy spent on efforts that have nothing to do with the security of the United States, when the time comes to defend American soil, we will be too involved in other adventures to do so.

There is nothing conservative about spending money we don’t have simply because that spending is for defense. No enemy can harm us in the way we are harming ourselves, namely bankrupting the nation and destroying our own currency. The former Soviet Union did not implode because it was attacked; it imploded because it was broke. We cannot improve our economy if we refuse to examine all major outlays, including so-called defense spending.

ADL Calls For “Major Law Enforcement Operation” To Deal With Obamacare Critics

ADL Calls For “Major Law Enforcement Operation” To Deal With Obamacare Critics

Attack group mixes in completely non-violent Internet postings with death threats in new purge against Internet dissent

ADL Calls For Major Law Enforcement Operation To Deal With Obamacare Critics  220410top2

Paul Joseph Watson
Prison Planet.com
Thursday, April 22, 2010

A major Anti-Defamation League report goes further than ever before in an effort to purge the Internet of all dissent, listing completely non-violent criticism of Obamacare posted on Internet forums as a reason to conduct a “major law enforcement operation” against opponents of big government and health care reform.

The ADL’s April 2010 report is entitled, “Violent Voices: Anti-Government Extremism Takes on New Intensity,” and consists largely of lists of comments culled from alternative news websites and forums, as well as Fox News.

“During the first few months of 2010, anti-government extremism has taken on a new level of intensity in the United States. The arrests of the Hutaree militia in Michigan illustrate this passion, which exists both within and outside the militia movement. Unfortunately, the Hutaree arrests may come to be seen not as the culmination, but rather as a first step in what may need to become a major national law enforcement operation,” states the introduction (emphasis mine).

Such words are chilling bearing in mind that the infamous MIAC report, which listed gun owners, Ron Paul supporters, libertarians and people who fly U.S. flags alongside neo-nazis and terrorists, was partly based on information provided to the Missouri Information Analysis Center by both the ADL and the Southern Poverty Law Center.

According to the ADL, a “major law enforcement operation” may be needed because Americans are upset that “health care reform effort is in fact key to evil efforts to implement a tyrannical government by any means necessary.”

While some of the comments listed by the ADL do hint at or call for violence, the organization underhandedly mixes them in with people who are merely expressing their displeasure at the passage of health care, amnesty, or new taxes. The vast majority of comments listed in the report relating to health care have no hint of racism or violence whatsoever.

One of the “extremist” comments worthy of a “law enforcement operation” listed by the ADL reads as follows.

“The bill that passed has NOTHING to do with healthcare,” wrote “TXplt” on the Gun and Game Forums on March 22. Rather, “…it is used solely as a vehicle to push an agenda—to destroy what is working in our insurance industries, to increase our government intrusion into citizens’ lives…and to eventually act as a vehicle for our power hungry miscreants to attempt to dictate every aspect of our lives.”

Another example is then listed.

A poster called “stainless,” writing to the Assault Web forums on the same day, thought the situation even more dire. “I don’t think you quite understand the scope of this bill,” he wrote. “From now on the gov. has absolute control of our lives…They can now declare a health ‘Emergency’ and shut down any portion of our society they want at any time. I suspect we will begin to see the practical affects [sic] of this control fairly quickly.”

Indeed, most of the comments listed in regard to health care contain no violent threats whatsoever. Consider the following example, which was posted by one of our own Prison Planet Forum moderators.

“Have you read the bill? It is a full police state bill. Your body is now owned by the state. Your children are owned by the state. Your blood, sperm, ovaries, all reproductive methods are owned by the state. Your organs are owned by the state. This is a Nazi Eugenics bill with full bailout financing to the federal reserve front companies (big insurance).” Post by “Sane” to the Prison Planet Forums, March 22, 2010.

This is shocking – the ADL lists relatively mild comments which criticize Obama, immigration, or the health care bill, statements that contain no threats and not even a hint of violence, and lumps them in with death threats against the President as well as lawmakers, immediately after stating that a “major law enforcement operation” needs to be undertaken to shut these people up.

A “major law enforcement operation” needs to be set up to take on people who don’t like Obamacare and express their dissatisfaction on the Internet? More than half the entire country opposes health care reform. The Feds are going to be kept very busy raiding every two-bit Joe Blogger who comments on a news story if the ADL has its way.

Curiously, since it emerged that white supremacist radio host Hal Turner was paid handsomely by the FBI to make death threats against federal officials, the ADL and the SPLC have stop including him on their list of domestic extremists. It seems that it’s only kosher to call for violence if you’re being ordered to do so by federal authorities.

Likewise, making death threats against people who the ADL or the SPLC disagrees with is also seemingly OK. We found comments on the Southern Poverty Law Center website from SPLC supporters calling for Alex Jones to be executed for his political beliefs. The ADL didn’t see fit to include these comments in any of their reports, and the SPLC left them up there for four months, only removing them after we wrote a story about the issue.

For organizations like the ADL and the Southern Poverty Law Center, hate is their business, and business is good. If there were no “domestic extremists” to dangle like bogeymen in front of the brainwashed public, the donations would dry up, and the lucrative government tie-ins would cease.

“The SPLC is in the money raising business for every known and unknown left-wing cause. It has gone from tracking the movements of violent racists, skinhead groups, and a brief resurgence of the KKK that number in the hundreds to creating hysteria over mainstream value voters,” writes Gary DeMar. “If you don’t agree with the SPLC leftist litmus test, then you are probably a member of a “hate group.” With its new definition of what constitutes a hate group, the SPLC has become a fund raising machine. It’s no wonder that the SPLC is flush with cash. Ultimately, the tactic is to strike fear in middle-America so the checks keep rolling in. Most communities don’t see skinheads or even KKKers, so the SPLC needs a tangible enemy.”

With so many Americans rightfully angered at the myriad of new taxes they face under Obamacare, not to mention new assaults in the pipeline – VAT taxes, carbon taxes, financial transaction taxes, the ADL has plenty of people at which to point who are upset and not afraid to show it.

But there’s a significant difference between being pissed off, angry at politicians, and wanting to protest or bitch about it, and being a domestic terrorist who wants to blow up federal buildings. Indeed, you probably need to be working for the FBI to have any interest in the latter. Also recall that the SPLC itself had operatives inside the Identity settlement in Elohim City, Oklahoma from where the OKC bombing plot had its origins.

“References to an informant working for the SPLC at Elohim City on the eve of the Oklahoma City bombing raises serious questions as to what the SPLC might know about McVeigh’s activities during the final hours before the fuse was lit in Oklahoma City – but which the SPLC has failed to disclose publicly,” the Daily Gazette reported, citing a declassified FBI memo.

The SPLC and the ADL have deliberately blurred the lines between the right to voice one’s grievances under the First Amendment, and inciting violence or planning terror (for those few individuals who are not paid to do so by federal authorities).

Up until now the ADL and the SPLC have concentrated on making lists of political activists, you know, like the Nazis did, who they disagreed with and then seamlessly tying them in with federal patsies like Hal Turner or Timothy McVeigh in an attempt to chill free speech and prevent people from actually researching the information these undesirables were putting out.

But now the ADL has gone a step further in actually calling for law enforcement action against people who leave non-violent rants and comments on websites, the mask has now been removed and the openly fascist effort to purge the Internet of dissent by arresting Obamacare critics is now underway.

10th amendment – GO States right!

The 10th Amendment Movement “If the federal government has the exclusive right to judge the extent of its own powers, warned the Kentucky and Virginia resolutions’ authors (Thomas Jefferson and James Madison, respectively), it will continue to grow – regardless of elections, the separation of powers, and other much-touted limits on government power.” –Thomas E. Woods nullification Nullification: When a state ‘nullifies’ a federal law, it is proclaiming that the law in question is void and inoperative, or ‘non-effective,’ within the boundaries of that state; or, in other words, not a law as far as that state is concerned The 10th Amendment Movement is an effort to push back against unconstitutional federal laws and regulations on a state level. The principle is known as “nullification,” and was advised by many prominent founders. Current Nullification Efforts: * 10th Amendment Resolutions * 10th Amendment Bills * Firearms Freedom Act * Medical Marijuana Laws * REAL ID * Health Care Freedom Act * Bring the Guard Home * Constitutional Tender * Cap and Trade * Federal Tax Funds Act * Sheriffs First Legislation * Federal Gun Laws * Regulation of Intrastate Commerce Potential Future Efforts: * Health Care Nullification * Patriot Act * No Child Left Behind * State-Initiated Constitutional Amendments History of Nullification: While the media generally portrays nullification as being solely aligned with the efforts of the nullifiers of the South and the Civil War, this is certainly false, and reeks of misinformation. Nullification has a long history in the American tradition and has been invoked in support of free speech, in opposition to war and fugitive slave laws, and more. Read more on this history here. – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – 10th Amendment Resolutions These non-binding resolutions, often called “state sovereignty resolutions” do no carry the force of law. Instead, they are intended to be a statement of the legislature of the state. They play an important role, however. If you owned an apartment building and had a tenant not paying rent, you wouldn’t show up with an empty truck to kick them out without first serving notice. That’s how we view these Resolutions – as serving “notice and demand” to the Federal Government to “cease and desist any and all activities outside the scope of their constitutionally-delegated powers.” Follow-up, of course, is a must. CLICK HERE FOR CURRENT 10TH AMENDMENT RESOLUTIONS ^back to top 10th Amendment Bills Unlike the many 10th Amendment Resolutions that have been introduced around the country since 2008, these “10th Amendment” or “State Sovereignty” bills are proposals for binding legislation. They include language to affirm the sovereignty of the people of the state and to create a commission or a committee to review the Constitutionality of acts emanating from the federal government. CLICK HERE FOR CURRENT 10TH AMENDMENT BILLS ^back to top Firearms Freedom Act Originally introduced and passed in Montana, the FFA declares that any firearms made and retained in-state are beyond the authority of Congress under its constitutional power to regulate commerce among the states. The FFA is primarily a Tenth Amendment challenge to the powers of Congress under the “commerce clause,” with firearms as the object. (source, FirearmsFreedomAct.com) CLICK HERE FOR CURRENT FIREARMS FREEDOM ACT LEGISLATION ^back to top Medical Marijuana Laws An honest reading of the Constitution with an original understanding of the Founders and Ratifiers makes it quite clear that the federal government has no constitutional authority to override state laws on marijuana. All three branches of the federal government, however, have interpreted (and re-interpreted) the commerce clause of the Constitution to authorize them to engage in this activity, even though there’s supposedly no “legal” commerce in the plant. At best, these arguments are dubious; at worst an intentional attack on the Constitution and your liberty. CLICK HERE FOR CURRENT STATE MARIJUANA LAWS ^back to top REAL ID Act Led by Maine in early 2007, 25 states over the past 2 years have passed resolutions and binding laws denouncing and refusing the implement the Bush-era law which many expressed concerned about privacy, funding and more. While the law is still on the books in D.C., its implementation has been “delayed” numerous times in response to this massive state resistance, and in practice, is virtually null and void. CLICK HERE FOR ANTI-REAL ID LEGISLATION ^back to top Health Care Freedom Act The Health Care Freedom Act is considered in states as either a bill or a state constitutional amendment – effectively prohibiting the enactment of any new government-run healthcare programs within the state. While many of the bills have language similar to true nullification legislation, many of them are promoted solely as a vehicle to drive a federal court battle – which is not nullification in its true sense. CLICK HERE FOR HEALTH CARE FREEDOM ACT TRACKING ^back to top Bring the Guard Home Under the Constitution, the militia (now called the National Guard) may only be called into duty by the federal government in three specific situations. According to Article I, Section 8; Clause 15, the Congress is given the power to pass laws for “calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions.” The militia was intended by the Founders and Ratifiers to be defense force and nothing more. Deployments outside the country were not considered, and neither were internal deployments in pursuance of powers that were not delegated to the federal government. Congress has passed numerous laws in the past 100 years giving the federal government additional authority not mentioned in the Constitution. But, without amendment, altering the enumerated powers by legislative fiat is, in and of itself, unconstitutional. Campaigns in states around the country are working to reassert the authority of governors over guard troops. CLICK HERE FOR CURRENT BRING THE GUARD HOME LEGISLATION ^back to top Constitutional Tender The United States Constitution declares, in Article I, Section 10, “No State shall… make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts.” Constitutional Tender laws seek to nullify federal legal tender laws in the state by authorizing payment in gold and silver or a paper note backed 100% by gold or silver, CLICK HERE FOR CURRENT CONSTITUTIONAL TENDER LEGISLATION ^back to top Cap and Trade Cap and Trade is often claimed to be authorized under the Commerce Clause of the Constitution. At best, this is a highly dubious claim. This interstate regulation of “commerce” did not include agriculture, manufacturing, mining, or land use. Nor did it include activities that merely “substantially affected” commerce. CLICK HERE FOR CURRENT CAP AND TRADE NULLIFICATION LEGISLATION ^back to top State Sovereignty and Federal Tax Funds Act Such laws would require that all federal taxes come first to the state’s Department of Revenue. A panel of legislators would assay the Constitutional appropriateness of the Federal Budget, and then forward to the federal government a percentage of the federal tax dollars that are delineated as legal and Constitutionally-justified. The remainder of those dollars would be assigned to budgetary items that are currently funded through federal allocations and grants or returned to the people of the state. CLICK HERE FOR CURRENT FEDERAL TAX FUNDS LEGISLATION ^back to top Sheriffs First Legislation A “Sheriffs First” bill would make it a state crime for any federal agent to make an arrest, search, or seizure within the state without first getting the advanced, written permission of the elected county sheriff of the county in which the event is to take place. CLICK HERE FOR CURRENT SHERIFFS FIRST LEGISLATION ^back to top Federal Gun Laws Nullification As codified in law with the 2nd Amendment, the People did not delegate the power to regulate or control the ownership of firearms to the federal government. And, as the 10th Amendment makes clear, all powers not delegated to the federal government are reserved to the States or to the People themselves. CLICK HERE FOR CURRENT FEDERAL GUN LAWS NULLIFICATION LEGISLATION ^back to top Nullification of Federal Intrastate Commerce Regulation As understood at the time of the founding, the regulation of commerce was meant to empower Congress to regulate the buying and selling of products made by others (and sometimes land), associated finance and financial instruments, and navigation and other carriage, across state jurisdictional lines. These bills attempt to reassert this original meaning of the commerce clause over wide areas of policy and effectively nullify federal laws and regulations that violate such limitations by regulating commerce and other activities that are solely intrastate. CLICK HERE FOR CURRENT INTRASTATE COMMERCE REGULATION NULLIFICATION LEGISLATION ^back to top