John C. CalhounJohn C. Calhoun, (1782-1850) American statesman

John C. Calhoun Quote

“It is federal, because it is the government of States united in a political union, in contradistinction to a government of individuals, that is, by what is usually called, a social compact. To express it more concisely, it is federal and not national because it is the government of a community of States, and not the government of a single State or Nation.”

John C. CalhounJohn C. Calhoun
~ John C. Calhoun

1850, John C. Calhoun's essay entitled A Discourse on the Constitution and Government of the United States

Ratings and Comments

J. B. Wulff, Bristol

A good explanation from a man who was radical where state's rights were concerned. He remains one of our greatest theorists on government structure and function. We are the wonder of the world because of this strange structure. While we are a nation of Americans, we are not a nation-state in the manner of France, Germany, Japan, etc. Our diversity of religions, ethnic roots, localities, and regional identity are brought together in a unity that defies most of the rest of the planet. If we lose this and begin to focus more on ethnic or racial or religious identities, we could easily see our noble experiment falter and collapse.

jim k, austin

If Mr Calhoun could see us now. A centralized government in control of a bunch of socialists/ fascists. Lincoln started it all downhill with the war against the South. All Lincoln lovers should read "Lincoln Unmasked"for the skinny on "The Great Emancipator".

J Carlton, Calgary

The Union "has" faltered and is in the process of collapsing altogether. Just keep letting the Obamunists do what they do, and soon no more USA. But the glorious new USSA will be a place where we can all link arms and goose step down to the bread line....

Mike, Norwalk

I fear the great experiment in freedom is dead. The USA (United States of America) has been replaced with the USA (Union of Socialist Amerika) The once sovereign now looks to the single nation for its dole, rights, and religion. Compelled compliance, license, victimless crimes, governmental larceny, corrupt executive / legislative / judicial / P.R. extended media, ignorance of individual sovereignty (complete with the federal governments philosophical foundations), etc. are now the despotic norms of a theocratic socialist nation.

E Archer, NYC

Calhoun writes eloquently and is bang on. The War Between the States was about consolidating and centralizing power, not about ending slavery -- even the Emancipation Proclamation only freed southern slaves, not those in the 'Union' states. The defeated soutern states were forced back into the 'union' and thus did not voluntarily accede to the nationalist union. Frankly, this was the end of de jure (lawful) government and the beginning of de facto rule -- rule by force. Of course the banksters that financed the wars moved in and have been seizing power ever since. FDR really pushed America into fascism, (and every president since has continued) and Obama is now furthering the absolute servitude to the Fed and globalists under the thumb of the international bankers. Sooner or later, something has got to give, because the cause of Liberty will ever live on.

M. Brown, Florida

I agree with my fellow citizens...

Mike, Norwalk

Archer, I agree with you, Liberty will ever live on, my reference was to the one specific application.

Waffler, Smith

We have long outlived these views and opinions. Not only has American humanity become one via the speed of travel, and intrastate highways, tele communication and now the internet, continents and hemispheres have become one. The whole world wonders after the likes and brillance of Susan Boyle the Scots diva of the moment. Some still long for some type of local autonomy. Like the Pomerians of say that they are not Polish any more etcetera. Americans are born in Florida and live out there lives in New York etcetera. Our loyalties are to America not to our states. Calhouns and the others paradigm has shifted exponentially. Good quote but old hat, lets move along.

Waffler, Smith

PS: Most of the states at least all of them in the west including California were acquired and posited into the Union by acts and action of the wise men ensconced in Washington, D.C. By such actions as the Lousiana Purchase, Mexican War, Gadsden Purchase etcetera territories were added to the whole and states were allowed to be formed and were given life by Washington. Only the original thirteen were a union of originally soverign states.

Mike, Norwalk

Waffler you opps again but, even if what you say was true about other than 13 original colonies, by their existence as independent states, they would still have a right to secede from their creator. BUT in fact, California as an independent Republic It was attempting to leave Mexico by various means including adjoining themselves to the United states. Texas was an independent Republic in armed conflict with the US over land disputes in New Mexico. The US paid the Texas Republic for the disputed land ending the conflict. Texas also united with the other states upon treaty. In 1847 the Mormons entered Mexican territory and established the independent state of Deseret. In 1849 Deseret applied for Statehood. In Deseret's rush to become officially organized with the US, as part of the 1850 Compromise Deseret agreed to divide into several States / Territories to help calm slave state concerns. The kingdom of Hawaii was illegally seized and through migration, out numbered the indigenous people thus becoming a State. Seward's folly was a lie and an illegal land grab. The Russians, Dutch, French and others had signed fishing treaties with the Tlingit and other Tribes. Nun of the countries claimed land ownership in Alaska and all recognized the Indian governments. Most of the fishing ventures had gone bankrupt. Lincoln engaged the services of the Russian navy to help blockade the South from bringing in supplies from the Pacific during the war. At the end of the war Congress was angry at Lincoln and because he did not get Congress' approval for Russian help they refused their payment. Seward's purchase of the bankrupt fishing rights (basically a quick claim deed) in Alaska allowed for Lincoln to save face with Russia, and through military might take over another State. (I helped research and organize the Indian claims to no avail, corrupt courts would not allow it in, no matter what attorney we could find to champion the cause) So Waffler, it doesn't matter how each State became a State, each State was to be an independent sovereignty. AND, freedoms and, liberties, and rights are not affected by speed of travel, intrastate highways, telecommunications, internet, continents or hemispheres. The whole world wonders what happened to that stand out beacon of freedom and liberty that all could keep adjusting their course. That beacon's light has now gone out as there is no difference between it and the rest of the despots.

Waffler, Smith

I did not oops Mike. I was generally correct that much of the states were the brain child of men who gathered in our nations capitol and set in motion the idea of manifest destiny. Get a grip. When travel and communication was as antiquated as it was in 1800's when Calhoun said this local autonomy was much more important. Now we have far flung business franchises and corporations nation wide that operate and dictate policies and procedures from one central location, one board of directors and one Chief Executive. How realistic is it for the population of these various states to not be in communication, and cooperation and United on so many issues of mutual concern -like swine flu for instance, like civil rights for instance. You can talk political theory all that you want to but you have no sense of reality. Your desire to be what you call free is just an inane and anti-Washington sentiment based on nothing but... well inanity.

Mike, Norwalk

Waffler, you did oops but for your off topic rantings. So what does it matter if all the states were the brain child of the brilliant and inspirational men in Washington; that doesn't change the fact that once they were established as individual States, they were recognized as independent sovereigns with ability to secede. If your concept of creator based divine right were to be true, the Declaration of Independence would make the U.S a Christian theocracy. Some States (the original 13, Texas, California, Utah, Alaska, Hawaii for example) have more (multiple) reasons, than others, but such reasons are just add ons. Each State is sovereign with right to associate with whom it will. What does multi -state / nation business entities have to do with victimless crimes? I believe the better the communications (from person to person or any entity(s) to any entity(s) any where - by speed, clarity of intent, etc.) the better man's situation. BUT, what does communications have to do with political compelled compliance? What does travel (interstate or international) have to do with governmental larceny? Civil rights are not the same as individual rights so what does the federal government's ability to regulate interstate flow, even for the purpose of disease control, have to do with absolute State sovereignty? What does a State's ability to coordinate with another State have to do with its ability to associate and interact with whom it will? By me having no sense of reality, does that me I should quit striving for freedom and liberty. My desires are not directed so much against Washington as for inalienable sovereign rights, and individual freedom and liberty.

Waffler, Smith

Mike I never oops. I cannot oops because I do not proclaim to be an expert and I am not prosyletizing like you do. I have no agenda but the serarch for truth. If I do not say something quite the away I really want to or the way that you can rightfully understand it I reserve the right to restate it later. Thus I never oops and I don't mistate facts intentionally. For someone who promotes driving on the "wrong" side of the road and such things as you do, I think you have a lot of guts telling others they oopsed! Sadly Mike the days of living unto oneself is over if it ever really existed. The states were far from the Capitol in Washington. They are not far any more. The history of the world is the history of mans coming together not in becoming further apart. The history of the world is in Unity not in disunity as you would have it. Now if you consider unity a lack of freedom and disunity a sign of freedom that is your choice and maybe just a choice of words that is driving you a bit nuts. Really why do you not go some where that has the freedom you think you are missing. Most people of the world are beating down our doors to have the freedom or style of freedom we have here. Why not go and find the style of freedom you desire, and good luck to you. I suggest Namibia in Southwest Africa.

Mike, Norwalk

lol Waffler, you oops yet again. I am one of the most firm advocates for law and order you've ever conversed with. I have never promoted driving on the wrong side of the road and such things. On your part, you are intentionally misstating facts. Traffic rules are essential for promoting right of way and order (many rules and most enforcement thereof today is criminal). The human creature is a social animal. The trick is to understand the laws relating thereto and structuring codes, regulations, rules, statutes, etc. in an organized manner to most accurately harmonize with such laws. The history of the world has proven it is when government is most limited and representation is as close to the individual sovereign as possible, freedom and liberty excel. Is what is really sad is that you have to stay in the vague ethos, make false accusations, and can't answer direct questions concerning your position.

Patrick Henry, Red Hill

Another poignant counterpoint to the Theory of Evolution.

From our Noblemen of Nature Founders and their worthy successor, John C. Calhoun, to the depthlessly doltish, boorish and morally incapacitated epigones of this lightless day- chart the devolution.

Ronw13, OR
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Ronw13, OR    3/21/18

The "god of the storm", " the prince of the power of the air" has no hold except through ignorance instilled by corrupt minions at the pulpit. regardless of religious sec.
The federal structure, is a perfect guarantor of Liberties.
" Centralized government that, by all historical precedent, would inevitably turn tyrannical." " The issue which has swept down the centuries and which will have to be fought sooner or later is the people versus the banks." Lord Acton
" Only when individuals are given Full Economic Freedom will it be possible to secure political and moral Freedom. Restrictions on economic freedom lead, sooner or later, to an extension of the coercive activities of the State into the political domain, undermining and eventually destroying the essential Liberties which the Capitalist societies were able to attain in the 19th century."
Ludwig Von Mises

E Archer, NYC

Every state that has joined the union, even after the original 13 colonies, has its own Constitution and was formed by the land patents signed by the President at the time of their joining. The Constitutions are nearly identical to the US Constitution, and the premise is of course the same: a charter by the sovereign people of the State, made up of representatives from all the state counties. Further, sovereigns drive on the right side of the road not because 'laws' have been forced upon us, but because we have AGREED to the rules of the road, to an agreed upon process for circulating traffic, for taking responsibility for any damages, for protecting travelling at high-speeds. We sign agreements all the time, why? Because we are consenting, not being ruled. Our signature is our word. Now the real issue is that we sign things to which we do not agree, then break the rules and get punished. Try not signing up for a Social Security number -- it's voluntary, but try to find work without it. How about every time a screen comes up to accept 5 pages of terms of conditions in order to go to the next page -- who reads that? What have I just agreed to?

A sovereign republican government is founded upon the consent of the People. Our signature is our consent.


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