Lysander Spooner’s oath

It seems like it has to be fiction, right? Wrong! (link)

Spooner wrote: Go to A….. B……, and say to him that “the government” has need of money to meet the expenses of protecting him and his property.  If he presumes to say that he has never contracted with us to protect him, and that he wants none of our protection, say to him that that is our business, and not his; that we choose to protect him, whether he desires us to do so or not; and that we demand pay, too, for protecting him.  If he dares to inquire who the individuals are, who have thus taken upon themselves the title of “the government,” and who assume to protect him, and demand payment of him, without his having ever made any contract with them, say to him that that, too, is our business, and not his; that we do not choose to make ourselves individually known to him; that we have secretly (by secret ballot) appointed you our agent to give him notice of our demands, and, if he complies with them, to give him, in our name, a receipt that will protect him against any similar demand for the present year. 

The original law passed by Republicans reads:  “I, A.B., do swear, or affirm, (as the case may be,) that I will, to the best of my knowledge, skill and judgment, diligently and faithfully execute the office and duties of assessor for, (naming the assessment district,) without favor or partiality, and that I will do equal right and justice in every case in which I shall act as assessor.” And a certificate of such oath or affirmation shall be delivered to the collector of the district for which such assessor or assistant assessor shall be appointed. And every assessor or assistant assessor acting in the said office without having taken the said oath or affirmation shall forfeit and pay $100, one moiety thereof to the use of the United States, and the other moiety thereof to him who shall first sue for the same; to be recovered, with costs of suit, in any court having competent jurisdiction.

Section 12. And be it further enacted, That the Secretary of the Treasury shall establish regulations suitable and necessary for carrying this act into effect; which regulation shall be binding on each assessor and his assistance in the performance of the duties enjoined by or under this act, and shall also frame instructions for the said assessors and their assistance; pursuant to which instructions the said assessors shall, on the first day of March next, direct and cause the several assistant assessor’s in the district to inquire after and concerning all lands, lots of ground, with their improvements, buildings, and dwelling houses, made liable to taxation under this act by reference as well as to any lists of assessment or collection taken under the laws of the respective States, as to any other records or documents, and by all other lawful ways and means, and to value and enumerate the said objects of taxation in the manner prescribed by this act, and in conformity with the regulations and instructions above-mentioned.…

The second part or the original law reads:

Section 52. And be it further enacted, that should any of the people of any of the States or Territories of the United States, or the District of Columbia be in actual rebellion against the authority of the government of the United States at the time this act goes into operation, so that the laws of the United States cannot be executed therein, it shall be the duty of the president, and he is hereby authorized, to proceed to execute the provisions of this act within the limits of such State or Territory, or District of Columbia, so soon as the authority of the United States therein is reestablished, and to collect the sums which would have been due from the persons residing or holding property or stocks therein, with the interest due, at the rate of 6% (him thereon until paid in the manner and under the regulations prescribed in the foregoing in the foregoing sections of this act. 

This Spooner translated from vague, political legalese to the vernacular:

If he refuses to comply, seize and sell enough of his property to pay not only our demands, but all your own expenses and trouble beside.  If he resists the seizure of his property, call upon the bystanders to help you (doubtless some of them will prove to be members of our band).  If, in defending his property, he should kill any of our band who are assisting you, capture him at all hazards; charge him (in one of our courts) with murder, convict him, and hang him.  If he should call upon his neighbors, or any others who, like him, may be disposed to resist our demands, and they should come in large numbers to his assistance, cry out that they are all rebels and traitors; that “our country” is in danger; call upon the commander of our hired murderers; tell him to quell the rebellion and “save the country,” cost what it may.  Tell him to kill all who resist, though they should be hundreds of thousands, and thus strike terror into all others similarly disposed.  See that the work of murder is thoroughly done; that we may have no further trouble of this kind hereafter.  When these traitors shall have thus been taught our strength and our determination, they will be good loyal citizens for many years, and pay their taxes without a why or a wherefore.  

These were the exigencies of the war to preserve the Customs Union so that a Protective Tariff could smother competition from European or Canadian makers of plows, scythes, hoes, chains, knives, rope, bridles, bits and farm implements in general and allow Yankee manufacturers to set prices without fear of being undercut. Slavery had nothing to do with it except to preserve the backward colonial hub of the metropole-colony engine for enriching the nouveau Metropole of New England. The first Tariff of Abominations brought the threat of secession and federal coercion. The Morrill Tariff of 1860 made it reality and sparked the War Between The States.


Find out the juicy details behind the mother of all economic collapses. Prohibition and The Crash–Cause and Effect in 1929 is available in two languages on Amazon Kindle, each at the cost of a pint of craft beer.

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Brazilian Sci-fi from 1926 featuring the usual beautiful daughter of a scientist touting prohibition and racial collectivism in America’s Black President 2228 by Monteiro Lobato, translated by J Henry Phillips (link)

Three dollars on Amazon Kindle

Brazilian blog

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