12 May 2018

Magna Carta Myths

As part of my research, I uncovered many sources of accidental misinformation but also some examples of what appeared to be disinformation. For example, in her book “Constitutional History of the United Kingdom” published in 2003, Ann Lyon describes the 1215 Magna Carta as purely symbolic, stating that it had been annulled by the Pope very shortly after it was written, which for obvious reasons, which shall be explained later, is incorrect. This book contained other significant errors, including the omission of the 2001 invocation of Article 61 of the 1215 Magna Carta by a quorum of British Lords, sanctioned by Leolin Price QC, which was nothing less than remiss given the historical significance of this event and the extent of research that had gone into the main body of the text. This book is targeted at undergraduates. Why would a publication used in the State's universities be so obviously and fundamentally inaccurate in it's account of the country's ancient common law and Constitution?

The following are examples of the most common myths that can be encountered when researching the validity of the great common law Charters:

Myth No.1 -  The Magna Carta has been repealed

It is often mistakenly thought that the common law Magna Carta has now been mostly repealed by Parliament. However, there are a number of logical reasons why this is impossible.  Parliament was not formed until fifty years after the 1215 Magna Carta and had no part in its compilation, but more significant than that, Parliament is and always has been of a subordinate jurisdiction to the common law.  It is in fact bound by common law.  It therefore cannot make, alter or repeal common laws. 

The confusion about the alleged abrogation of the 1215 common law version of the great charter has arisen because in 1297 the Model Parliament made a statute version of the Magna Carta, a copy of the Magna Carta 'granting' the same rights to the citizens which are already available in common law.  It is ONLY the statute versions, such as the 1297 and 1830 versions, which have been mostly repealed whilst the 1215 common law version remains out of the reach of Parliament and its power-hungry influences.  When the Magna Carta is referred to as a statute, this is due to either clumsy research, ignorance, the casual misapplication of terms, or, in the case of government functionaries and lawyers in recent times, its clearly specious disinformation. 

As Jonathan Gaunt Q.C. said, "Magna Carta [is] not a statute but a treaty.”  Parliament can only repeal statutes and acts, not laws. A repeal of a statute which gives effect to common law does not repeal the underlying common law itself.  The common and constitutional law are higher law with the ability to strike down any bill which has passed through Parliament and which is against common right and reason, which is repugnant or impossible to perform.  See Chief Justice Sir Edward Coke 1628.  These are the most important laws we have and all are beyond the legal reach of Parliament.

Lord Renton said in the House of Lords (recorded in Hansard in 2000) in response to a speech by The Earl Russell on “amending” the Magna Carta 1215. Something parliament cannot do without the fully fledged will of the whole population. The Honourable Lord Renton said: 
My Lords, before the noble Earl sits down, perhaps I may mention one point in relation to his fascinating speech. He suggested that we should amend Magna Carta. We cannot do that. Magna Carta was formulated before we ever had a Parliament. All that we can do is to amend that legislation which, in later years when we did have a Parliament, implemented Magna Carta.”  The Earl of Russell then apologetically replied by saying “I spoke loosely and I hope that the noble Lord will forgive me.”
As Alistair MacDonald Q.C., Chairman of the Bar Council of England and Wales stated in the 2015 issue of The Barrister (page 3, pa, 25):
"The principles enshrined in Magna Carta are as important today as they were in 1215. It is a terrible irony that, as we celebrate Magna Carta, it is being undermined by an executive which pays lip service to its principles. If the legacy of Magna Carta is to last another 800 years, it requires everyone with a sense of history and an understanding of the critical importance of the rule of law to our society to stand up and fight for it. The liberties conferred by this great document were hard won. We owe it to posterity to ensure that they are not lost in our time."
On the Magna Carta 1215's 700th anniversary, in 1915, the Scottish legal scholar William McKechnie called the Charter:
a clear enunciation of the principle that the caprice of despots must bow to the reign of law; that the just rights of individuals, as defined by law and usage, must be upheld against the personal will of kings
On the 750th anniversary of Magna Carta 1215, Lord Denning, Master of the Rolls from 1962-1982, stated that the 1215 Magna Carta is:
”the greatest constitutional document of all times—the foundation of the freedom of the individual against the arbitrary authority of the despot.” - Denning Law Journal 2015 Vol 27, Magna Carta and Magnanimity.

It is very apparent that this timeless and perpetual document may never be altered but by the explicit full-hearted consent of the people it was designed to protect the Population.

Myth No. 2 – The Magna Carta is invalid as it was signed under duress.

One of the major myths today is that the Magna Carta 1215 was “signed under duress”. Firstly, it wasn’t signed, it was sealed with the Royal Seal.  Secondly – title of the land was then settled by ‘trial by combat’, war!  King John, subject to the law but a lawless tyrant, was in a position where he had been defeated by his own subjects who then had the right to title of the land. However, the barons allowed John to keep the throne if certain laws were put into place to protect the people. It was perfectly lawful and arguably too tolerant. The last certain judicial battle in Britain was in Scotland in 1597. According to feudal protocols, the king was at all times subject and bound under the common law terms of his Coronation Oath to uphold the law of the land. The King’s numerous atrocities and unchivalrously gross offences placed him outside the law of the land to which he was already subject and bound by oath.

The “duress” King John would have experienced was no more than that which a murderer would also experience when being arrested. Throughout John’s vicious rule and leading up to the confrontation with the people’s just forces of law and order, he mercilessly inflicted what we would call today, ‘a reign of terror’: widespread injustice, acts of disseizing (unlawful dispossession of property) at the hands of his lawless government justices; of his mercenary forces committing acts of homicide, wanton butchery, torture, the cutting-out of tongues, the putting out of eyes, the slitting-off of ears and noses, of robbery, rapine, extortion and depredation; in short, inhuman criminal misrule by outlaws led by a robber king.

Not only did King John break every kind of moral and lawful obligation binding on a monarch and a man, but he breached his compact (contract) with his equals, the nobility, and with all other parties to the feudal agreement which comprised the entire population, including the land-holding freemen, churchmen and commoners who shared wide allotments of common land made available for sustenance of a large proportion of the populace. The land was feudally owned, distributed, occupied and worked. Without the concurrence of his nobles, his equals (peers), King John had no authority whatsoever for what he considered his benefit as it was against the interests of the people and the Law of the Land.

The People were not asking King John for rights which they already had, they were merely reasserting them upon him because of his unlawful behaviour and tyranny.  At his coronation, King John had promised and subjected himself by oath to the common law Charter of Liberties ratified by his forebear Henry I and his successors, an oath which he breached. He is lucky to have kept his head.

Myth No.3 – The Magna Carta is invalid because the Pope had it annulled.

It has even been claimed by those resistant to the common law, including within the aforementioned book by Ann Lyons, that Pope Innocent III, as a foreign religious potentate, intervened and claimed authority to annul the British common law rights of the Magna Carta with a papal bull.  These were little more than invalid and conceited delusions of grandeur, clearly beyond his jurisdiction and authority.

In 1213 King John was having a great deal of trouble with the Barons, and the population generally. King John was using foreign mercenaries to suppress the population. He feared for his safety and gave England to Archbishop Pandolph, the Papal Legate, receiving it back again to rule as a vassal King to the Pope for a payment of 1000 Marks a year. John also took on the mantle of a Crusader so that anyone who attacked him would face excommunication.

In 1366 King Edward III received a letter from the Pope asking, again, for the 1000 Marks a year for those years for which it had not been paid, threatening to take action against him if Edward failed to pay. Edward spoke to the Bishops, and the Lords, who spoke to the Commons. First the Bishops, then the Lords, and finally the Commons, came to Edward and they told him that England did not belong to John.  By attempting to hand England to the Pope, King John broke the law. As such, the agreement King John made with the Pope was not valid. The money was not owed and was not to be paid. This constitutional ruling ensures that the Kings of England were not, and can never be, vassal Kings to anyone.  This is a very important constitutional ruling which applies as much today as it did then.

Speaking of this, Lord Kilmuir, the ex-Lord Chancellor who wrote in December 1960, states that “King John’s action in surrendering England to the Pope, and ruling England as a Vassal King to Rome was unlawful because England did not belong to John he only held it in trust for those who followed on. The money the Pope was demanding as tribute was not to be paid. Because England’s Kings were not vassal Kings to the Pope and the money was not owed.”  The constitutional laws and customs of England clearly do not allow any foreign interferences.  As Sir William Blackstone said in 1753, "the legislature of England doth not, nor ever did, recognize any foreign power, as superior or equal to it in this kingdom or as having the right to give law to any, the meanest of its subjects."

King Alfred the Great previously also had to put the Pope back in his place.  King Alfred experienced his father and brother’s rule and had a staunch sense of knowing exactly how to manage rather than rule his Kingdom.  He had made a good choice of candidate for his next Archbishop; however, the Pope didn’t agree with his choice and sent his own from Rome.  Alfred rejected this imposition and returned the Pope’s Archbishop to Rome.  The Roman Archbishop was again returned to King Alfred with the added advice from the Pope that it was he who appointed every king in the world, and if Alfred wanted to remain King he must accept the Pope’s choice of Archbishop.  Alfred stood his ground and told the Pope that he was elected as King by the English and would do what was in their best interest.  This occurrence started England’s refusal to accept any foreign interference in the jurisdiction of its own lands.

Myth No.4 – The common law Magna Carta only applies to Barons

There is also a weak argument that the reaffirmation of the common laws of the land into the great Charters was only intended for the protection of the British barons of the land.  However, upon close examination of the 1215 Magna Carta there are the frequently used words; “No man”, “all men”, “free men”, “Welshmen”, “person”, “whole community of the land”, “anyone”, and “Any man”. It also refers to a baron as a “baron” and nothing other, their roles are very specific within the protocols of Magna Carta 1215. Common law, by its very nature, does not intend to mislead those it wishes to protect, that is the business of the inferior legal jurisdiction of statutory legislation with its complex, misleading, presumptuous and exclusive use of ambiguous legalese.  If a common law document had been written and intended to have exclusive relevance only to the barons of the land, it would have been clearly addressing the rights of barons only.

Myth No.5 – The common laws of the Magna Carta were granted to the People by the ruling class and can be removed at will.

No monarch has ever had the genuine right to absolute-reign “by the Grace of God” above the rule of common law. The unfounded and megalomaniacal claim of the “divine right of kings” is little more than a self-appointed political and religious doctrine entrained into the public consciousness in history by certain family bloodlines.  The motto "Dieu et mon droit" ("God and my right") remains the motto of the Monarch of the United Kingdom but thankfully very few people are gullible enough to be fooled by it today. 
It is a misconception of folks today to imagine that the feudal monarch was ‘absolute’. Far from it. That was an attribute which came much later in our history under the deranged dogma of the “divine right of kings”! According to feudal protocols, the king was at all times subject and bound under the common law terms of his Coronation Oath to uphold the common law of the land. Furthermore, the three hundred great peers of the realm were the king’s equals who possessed the right and duty to try (judge and obtain redress from) the monarch at a common law trial by jury if he breached the common law of the land by defaulting on his obligations and oath.” -D’Oudney, Democracy Defined.
W.C. A History of the English-Speaking Peoples (1956) -
Here is a law which is above the King and Parliament, and which even he and they must not and may not legally break. And in the event they or anyone else were to try to abrogate it, such attempt at abrogation shall have no force nor effect and can be safely ignored with no legal ill effect. In addition, in the event of successful attempts at abrogation of such liberties, customs, or rights, the King has commanded and do hereby compel any and all subjects to swear oath to join the barons to assail the properties and persons and families of those [. . . .] who had successfully completed such abrogation, including but not limited to that of the individual Members of Parliament who had voted in favour of any such successful attempts at abrogation. This reaffirmation of a supreme law and its expression in a general charter is the great work of Magna Carta; and this alone justifies the respect in which men have held it.”
Chief Justice Henry DeBracton 1250 ruled that the King is beneath no man but he is beneath God and rules England as Gods Lieutenant and according to Gods Laws.  But he is beneath the law for it is by the law that he becomes King.  Charles I was put on trial and executed for his crimes.  Crown immunity is a myth put about by Government.  In England we work on the general assumption that the Monarch is perfect and can do no wrong.  So when wrong occurs, we previously stretched the necks of the Kings' wicked and evil advisors.  Ministers with a misaligned sense of loyalty should take note of that.

Only statutory legislation can be given and taken away at the behest of the State.  Common law is of the People, for the protection of all people.  Common laws are the original human rights, above all other rights, owned by the People as birthright.  The Magna Carta is the great Constitutional charter of human rights.

As detailed in a previous post, the Magna Carta was an important and timely reassertion of the common laws of the 1100 Charter of Liberties, which was itself a reissue of the common laws of William I, which was a reissue of the common laws of Edward the Confessor, which were themselves a reissue of the first book of English Constitutional Law, the Dome promulgated by King Alfred the Great in 886.  It is worth repeating that none of these documents granted anything new, they were simply restating and reasserting the People's pre-existing common laws of the land.

11 May 2018

What is Common Law?

The common law is beautifully simple, easy to understand and can be communicated adequately on a single sheet of paper, in plain English.

Common law is an evolved ancient collective agreement between the People regarding what conduct is deemed to be honourable, acceptable and in keeping with their inherent and inalienable rights to life, liberty and property.  These rights were not granted to the People by a government, they are natural birthrights. The common law exists to protect those rights.

Britain is a common law country where we are administratively governed and policed by consent.  There are very distinct differences between legislative Statutes created by Parliament and the laws of the land known as common laws.  In a true democracy the laws are created and controlled by the People, whereas in a dictatorship the government creates and controls the laws.

Everyone is accountable for their actions, provided that a moral choice is open to them.  Common law is common in the sense that it is common to all men and women; people everywhere share it in common; it applies to and emancipates everyone equally without exception: all men and women are subject to it and it is the timeless duty of all people to recognise, constitutionally emplace and uphold the supremacy of common law.  The jurisdiction of common law encompasses all of the British land mass and the Commonwealth. 

It is law based upon moral principles.  The people make the law through their acceptance and validation by jury decisions in a properly convened common law Court de Jure. This means the full, un-abridged Trial-by-Jury; not the watered-down version we have today. The full system of Trial-by-Jury that we did have at one time and are still supposed to have now, has much sharper teeth and a far greater scope.

Common law can be summarized quite simply as:
  1. Do no intentional harm
  2. Cause no loss
  3. Keep the peace
  4. Be honourable in agreements 
There is a compulsion to obey laws. Laws defend our freedoms and liberties and through them we live in peace and harmony with our neighbours. Failure to comply with laws would render an individual an outlaw. If you do not respect the law then it can afford you no protection.

The common law is egalitarian, it aims to protect our most basic human rights, our inherent natural rights.  Some say it protects our “God given rights”, this may be so but common law is and needs to remain secular for obvious reasons in today’s mixed communities.  The controversies of theism, religions and spiritualism, which have created sociological divisions over many centuries have no place in the secular common law courtroom of equal justice.  We all have the basic right to live freely without suffering deliberate loss, harm or fraud by another, regardless of others’ spiritual beliefs.  Equal justice is pure and uncompromising.  There is no place in the common law judicial process for taqiyya, kitman, sharia or any other thesis which prescribes or advocates protection of its religion or members from honest justice.  Adherents of these practices self-disqualify from jury-service in a common law trial by jury process.

For anyone new to exploring their common law rights, the first point of reference should always be their own common sense and capacity for critical thinking.  People are too often found looking for sources and references, such as the 1100 Charter of Liberties or the 1215 Magna Carta, to prove the existence or validity of the common law and lawful rights.  It is vitally important to recognise that these charters were not creating new rights, they were merely recognising the lawful rights which already existed, rights which you don't need to ask for.  You may need to defend them but should never need to ask for what is already yours.  They are yours by birthright.    

The 1215 Magna Carta, was an important and timely reassertion of the common laws of the 1100 Charter of Liberties, which was itself a reissue of the common laws of William I, which was a reissue of the common laws of Edward the Confessor, which were themselves a reissue of the first book of English Constitutional Law, the Dome promulgated by King Alfred the Great in 886.  

It is worth repeating that none of these documents granted anything new, they were simply restating and reasserting the pre-existing common laws of the land.  We were all born with the natural equal rights to life, self-determination and freedom from any deliberate harm, theft or fraud by others.  You do not need to approach anyone with your cap in hand to ask for these inalienable rights, they are already yours.  If any individual has a need to ask for these rights from another individual or organisation, including the government, serious questions must be asked regarding the health of that particular relationship.

The earliest records that I have been able to trace of our British common laws date back to the 9th century.  Saxon King Alfred the Great (871-899) was known for many great attributes and accomplishments, not least for his famous Law Code.  In 1892, the famous German Church Historian Rev. Professor Dr J.H. Kurtz called King Alfred the greatest and noblest of all the monarchs England has ever had.  The roots of King Alfred’s Book of Laws, the Dome, came forth from his travels to all the old kingdoms where he collected and compiled the peoples’ ancient laws and customs.  These included the, as then already long-established, laws of Kent, Mercia and Wessex.  Customs are behaviours or practices which have existed for a very considerable length of time in society and met unanimously with the approval of the People.  By its very nature a custom cannot be repealed, as it is the rule of the land and its people. 

King Alfred the Great was not only the first leader to codify the common laws, he was an elected King who united England, a great peacemaker, a statesman, he instituted the Witan administrative council, he reaffirmed the sovereignty of the juror in deciding the law (Unanimity), reaffirmed the judicial role of the jurors in Trail-by-Jury, returned ‘convenors’ to their correct non-judicial role of court administration (today miscalled judges), and also personally translated several literary classics from Latin for the English to read.  Alfred’s principle of ‘Unanimity’ demanded that for a guilty verdict to be passed, the jury must pass a unanimous verdict where all twelve jurors found the defendant guilty, beyond all reasonable doubt.  Alfred established that when there is a doubt, it is in the interests of all people that justice should save rather than condemn.

The British Constitution; which can be simplified as being comprised primarily of the common laws, the 1215 Magna Carta and the Coronation Oath of the Sovereign to protect those laws; is the foundation of our law.  Most in the legal profession don’t appear to be properly educated about our constitution – that should tell you all you need to know about what the State desires, especially considering that it controls and regulates the education system. 

In common law, any attempt to undermine the Constitution of Great Britain is unlawful, contrary to R v Thistlewood (1820) which states that any attempt to undermine or destroy the constitution would be an act of Treason.

All of our rights are absolute.  King Alfred the Great hanged forty judges who conducted unfair trials.  Our right to a fair trial, freedom of expression and assembly cannot be withdrawn.  Kings who have tried this have been punished with death - William II (Rufus), Edward II Charles I and James II who was forced to flee the Kingdom.

The power of the common law lies within the consciousness of the People.  It hasn't gone anywhere but, in its most powerful and complete form it does appear to have been deliberately airbrushed out of awareness behind the vast expanse of smoke and mirrors that are today’s parliamentary Statutes and Acts.  All our common laws, rights and customs predate the Government.  The State did not give us these rights nor can it lawfully take them from us, unless we willingly allow it through our consent, apathy or ignorance. 

10 May 2018

Britain is NOT a true democracy

The origin and etymology of the word 'democracy' is from both 'demos', which means 'the people', 'kratos' which means 'power', and 'kratein' which means 'to rule'.  So in simple terms, in a true democracy the People rule.  The People are sovereign.
"We owe to the ancient Greeks much, if not most of our own current political vocabulary. All the way from anarchy and democracy to politics itself. But their politics and ours are very different beasts. To an ancient Greek democrat (of any stripe), all our modern democratic systems would count as “oligarchy”. By that I mean the rule of and by – if not necessarily or expressly for – the few, as opposed to the power or control of the people, or the many." - Paul Cartledge, Senior Research Fellow, Clare College, University of Cambridge.

The presumption of liberty is every human being's natural right, and what we have today in Britain is not a true democracy, and without true democracy there can be no assurance of liberty.

In a dictatorship the People are obviously subject to the laws imposed upon them by their dictator.  Whereas, in a genuine democracy the People are the law, and through the beautiful design and process of a true democratic system the laws and regulations are chosen by the People for the People.

A true democracy has rules but not rulers.  Its a system which is about the People ruling themselves through law. The most accurate, well evidenced and obvious definition of the true meaning of democracy that I've encountered is provided by the Democracy Defined Educational Campaign, led by Kenn D'Oudney et al:
True democracy was born in Greece "from the the Hellenic Athenian Constitution of government.  It's a state of society realised neither by referenda (mass voting for new laws), nor by suffrage (electoral voting for representatives), nor by the representatives’ majorities’ legislatorial voting. Electoral voting, majority rule and ‘consensus politics’ neither create nor define democracy."
"To prevent the tyranny of government and establish liberty and equal justice for all, the Hellenes created a society in which the People have the power in Trial by Jury to judge and overrule unjust laws enacted by the State. The word the Hellenes gave to describe this state of society in which the People have control through the Trial by Jury to judge, make and enforce the laws and overrule the government, the wealthy and powerful, the aristocrats and all those who sought to rule them, was demokratia, which translates into English as Democracy."
Even with a restricted viewpoint, it is clear that this charade which we call 'Representative Democracy' is only really about very-limited and controlled choice within the jurisdiction of statutory legislation. Then, on top of that, when one considers the actual number of elected seats versus appointed and inherited seats, the way in which parties control their members' decisions, the whip system, the scope for powerful lobbying by corporations, 'The Remembrancer' who protects the City of London's interests, and the potential for influence of representatives at an individual level, it really does beggar belief that we have the audacity to call ourselves a democratic nation.

Ignoring the absence of true common law democracy in Britain today, this following site gives a reasonable breakdown of the lack of influence that the public have at parliamentary levels alone:

Britain is a Common Law country and has a Common Law Constitution to keep the system in check. In the same way that our Military needs to be preserved to protect ourselves from violent threats, the common law and our Constitution need to be known by the People, safe-guarded and enforced to help protect our sovereignty from subversion or the gradual rot of tyranny from within.

Failed Constitutional Checks and Balances

Parliament is a tripartite agreement.  The Commons originate legislation, the Lords vet the legislation and dependent only upon their conscience they send it back for amendment, reject it or give it their assent.  The Bill then goes to the King or Queen who according to His or Her own judgment and conscience will reject the bill or give it the Royal Assent.

Constitutionally, the Sovereign is Head of State and is the final ‘constitutional-check’ on all legislation passed by Parliament.  The Sovereign has the absolute right to accept a Bill passed by both houses or to reject or return the bill for amendment.  If the King or Queen refuses the Assent, the bill is dead and constitutionally, in accordance with common law, there is no other lawful channel for the bill’s assent.  Sir Mathew Hale Chief Justice in his 1713 “Prerogatives of the King” deals with this subject very clearly.

Joseph Chitty in his book “A Treatise on the Law of the Prerogatives of the Crown and the Relative Duties and Rights of the Subject” 1820, describes the prerogative to grant the assent or reject a Bill as a high and incommunicable prerogative.

Until 1542 the Royal Assent could only be granted by the Monarch in person, at a ceremony in which the whole text of the Bill would be read aloud.  The Royal Assent by Commission Act 1541 was probably an oversight by the King as it opened a doorway of weakness for future statutory corruption.  Parliament inserted a clause in the Bill of Attainder, which provided that the Royal Assent could be granted by commissioners appointed for the purpose, instead of by the king in person. Initially used sparingly, the new procedure gradually became used more often until it became the usual way.  It however, did not take away the authority of the Monarch to refuse assent.

The 1542 Act was repealed by section 2(2) of the Royal Assent Act 1967, which however preserved the Commissioners' role to provide assent thus maintaining the capacity for assent of legislation without proper Royal vetting as per the Coronation Oath.  Since 1967 the Royal Assent has been granted by a committee of five individuals appointed by the government of the day to give what has become known as the automatic assent. This is of course a weak link in the system and unconstitutional.

We are told by Parliament that the last time a Bill was rejected by the sovereign was in 1707 when Queen Anne rejected the Scottish Militia Act. This is far from the truth. Queen Victoria refused a Bill on homosexuality because it contained references to lesbians on the grounds she did not believe women could engage in such activity. The Bill had to be rewritten with all reference to lesbianism removed before it received the Royal Assent. Yet today Parliament claims that the sovereign does not have the power to withhold assent from a bill against the advice of ministers, this would therefore make the Sovereign subordinate to ministers, which is not the reality.

The next step below the final process of Royal approval is 'The House of Lords'. The Lords once played a crucial constitutional part in preserving the rights and liberties of the People from ill-considered or unconstitutional statutory creations of the Executive, however changes to parliamentary procedures and the process of appointment of seats in the Lords have seriously undermined its role in this regard today.

In 1910 the House of Lords rejected Asquith’s Finance Bill because it was unfair to the public. Asquith then created the Parliament Act 1911 by threatening the House of Lords with closure. King Edward VII refused Royal Assent because it removed constitutional protection from the people. However, Edward died shortly after and the new King George V was ‘informed’ that he could not use the Royal Prerogatives without the backing of a Government Minister.

Some respected constitutional lawyers state that both the 1911 and 1949 Parliament Acts are invalid, as they enable legislation to be enacted without the proper agreement of The House of Lords. Over 50 years ago, Hood Phillips, Emeritus Professor of Jurisprudence and Dean of the Faculty of Law, University of Birmingham, pointed out that the Parliament Act cannot be valid because it was rejected by the House of Lords and no power of amendment was conferred on the House of Commons by the Act.  Indeed, the Parliament Act 1911 offers no authority to the House of Commons to amend primary legislation at all.

The Sovereign is the court of last resort, the only person who can stand finally between the People and renegade politicians. Indeed, we would go further. It is the Sovereign’s sworn duty, as laid down in the Magna Carta.  The Coronation Oath is a contract for life between the Sovereign and the nation. 

At the coronations of both The Queen and her father George VI, the words of the Oath were changed to meet the needs of the Statute of Westminster, 1931. The words used at these coronations did not have the force of constitutional law behind them, having been merely agreed between the leaders of the Church of England and the government of the day in each case. Both oaths were unlawful, as The Times newspaper pointed out on both occasions. In any case, Parliament has no power to interfere with the Coronation Oath as first enacted during the reign of Charles II.

The Coronation Oath is not a contract between the Sovereign and parliament, it is a contract between the Sovereign and the People. It cannot be broken by a vote in parliament. It can be broken only by the Sovereign or by the People.  Like all contracts, if one party to the contract believes the terms are at risk, the other party can be called to account.  As we have indicated already, today just as for nearly a thousand years, if an individual believes his freedoms, rights and liberties are at risk, the Sovereign can be called upon to protect those rights as promised in the contract.

The sovereign is entrusted, through a contract of promise of the Coronation Oath, as the ultimate protector of the nation and guarantor of the lawful rights of the People.  When the sovereign fails in that duty, all individuals in society are left with no option but to protect their own natural rights or voluntarily subjugate themselves to tyranny.
"For parliament to develop or improve on a fundamental right is one thing. But to enact legislation which expressly removes an already existing fundamental right, and to have that enactment blindly upheld by a court, is quite another. If there is one thread which runs through the whole turbulent history of British constitutional development, it is the belief that we [parliament and the courts] are the servants of fundamental constitutional rules which were there before us and will be there after we are gone.” - Allott, The Courts and Parliament, 1979.

Despite all those rights, freedoms and protections, established over centuries, today our common laws, rights, freedoms, liberties and customs have the appearance of being demolished with the speed and thoroughness of a team of statutory bulldozers.

Long ago, Magna Carta dealt with the problem of a Sovereign acting above the law. Today, the constitutional system of checks and balances has been seriously undermined. We now have a House of Commons acting above the law, plainly contemptuous of the powers of The Queen and the House of Lords.
"A political system resting on professional party politicians is clearly fatal to all liberty and national well-being. It represents a total destruction of our historic Parliamentary constitution behind whose forms, institutions and ceremonies it has disguised itself whilst at the same time rendering them meaningless. The full meaning of Parliamentary supremacy is now lost to us by the constitutional corruptions which the professional politician has fomented by their appeals to an alien and fraudulent political ideology. By clearly identifying and correcting these corruptions we can recover the enduring qualities of strength and freedom of our parliamentary constitution for which generations of Englishmen have for centuries been ready to sacrifice their lives and their possessions" - Richard Crossman (1907-74) Introduction to Bagehot's,  “The English Constitution", 1867.

English philosopher and physician, John Locke, widely regarded as one of the most influential of enlightenment thinkers and commonly known as the ‘Father of Liberalism’, had no doubts that the people remain sovereign: 
there remains still in the people the supreme power to remove or alter the legislative when they find the legislative act contrary to the trust reposed in them.”

The power to achieve this lies in the common law of the People once it has their full backing. Winston Churchill was confident of the safeguards contained in the common law system of trial by jury of the Magna Carta, writing in his ‘History of The English-Speaking Peoples’, he said: 
and when in subsequent ages the State, swollen with its own authority, has attempted to ride roughshod over the rights and liberties of the subject it is to this doctrine that appeal has again and again been made, and never, as yet, without success.”

9 May 2018

Statutory Subversion of Sovereignty

Britain is a common law country which is administratively governed and policed by consent. Due to the considerable growth of international commerce and powerful corporations, combined with the ever present desire of the few to rule the many, the commercial legal system known as Roman Civil Law, has expanded internationally and led to the existence of bijural (dual jurisdiction) systems of regulation in all the World's common law countries.

These two competing systems of regulation, the ancient and preeminent jurisdiction of common law and the subordinate statutory jurisdiction of Roman Civil Law, are in constant ideological conflict with each other. 

The primary and compelling reason for the United States’ Declaration of Independence was to eliminate the Roman civil legal system from the domestic law of the colonies due to its potential for conflict with freedom.

Briefly, and stated in general terms, the basic concepts of these two systems are diametrically opposed. In the Roman statutory legal system, the source of all regulations is the State or the personal ruler, it or he is sovereign. In the common law, the source of all law is the People, and they as a whole are sovereign.  The most prominent distinction between common law and the statutory legal system is that common laws are principle based and applied equally to all men, while the statutes of the Roman legal system are more prescriptive, can only hold jurisdiction over legally registered consenting persons and can be made to apply to specified parts of society.

The Roman civil legal system is recognised as lending itself towards an oligarchic state, whereas the true democracy enhancing Saxon common law promotes moral self-determination of the People by the People under a constitution created by the People.  The Roman civil legal system is a top-down authority, whereas the common law system is a people-up authority, with the People as the foundation of power.

During the centuries, these two systems have had an almost deadly rivalry for the control of society.  The Roman civil legal system and its fundamental concepts have been the instrument through which men of genius and self-serving ambition have set up and maintained despotisms through trading and money.  Whereas the common law, with its basic moral principles being the instrument through which men of equal genius but with love of mankind burning in their souls, have established and preserved liberty and free institutions.

In Britain, we have these two systems of regulation running simultaneously. In a finance based modern society, the existence of a civil legal system is arguably advantageous and necessary for the administrative management of some aspects of society, such as the road transport system for example.  However, with careful legal and historical analysis it can be observed that there has been a very slow introduction of a very considerable number of enactments of Parliament (Statutes and Acts) which have tipped the balance of power considerably towards the State over the People.   

In 1931, the Macmillan Committee was formed following the 1929 stock market crash to determine the root causes of the depressed economy of the United Kingdom.  Of relevance to this discussion, it is worth calling attention to the following passage from the 1931 Macmillan Report:-
The most distinctive indication of the change of outlook of the government of this country in recent years has been its growing preoccupation, irrespective of party, with the management of the life of the people.  A study of the Statute Book will show how profoundly the conception of the function of government has altered.  Parliament finds itself increasingly engaged in legislation which has for its conscious aim the regulation of the day-to-day affairs of the community, and now intervenes in matters formerly thought to be entirely outside its scope.  This new orientation has its dangers as well as its merits.  Between liberty and government there is an age-long conflict.  It is of vital importance that the new policy, while truly promoting liberty by securing better conditions of life for the people of this country, should not, in its zeal for interference, deprive them of their initiative and independence which are the nation’s most valuable assets.”

The introduction of many Statutes, such as the Offence Against Persons Act 1861 or the Theft Act 1968 as examples, have unnecessarily imported the details of common law crimes into statutory jurisdiction.  If punishment is administered as a result, without open and informed consent to this form of summary justice, there is a clear conflict with our common law Constitution.  Specifically, according to common law, all individuals are innocent until proven guilty and cannot be punished by fines or loss of liberties, except according to the judgment of a trial by a jury of their equals.  

In 1929, Lord Hewart of Bury, Lord Chief Justice of England, gave clear warnings of the capacity for the abuse of statutory power in his aptly titled book ‘The New Despotism’.  He discussed, among other things, how ministers of Parliament were making delegated legislation to install legal instruments of authoritarianism which were untouchable by Parliament or the Courts.  Chapter 4 of this book was appropriately titled “Administrative Lawlessness”.  This book unsurprisingly caused a constitutional and political storm.  It was rumoured that Whitehall considered an attempt to boycott the book.  

 The main points of criticism of Lord Hewart’s report were as follows: -

In response the British Government appointed the “Committee on Ministers’ Powers” to review the powers of ministers.

Lord Hewart’s complaints were substantially confirmed in the resulting report, which indicated that the powers conferred upon ministers by statute should be closely watched and strictly defined.   
Lord Hewart's spirited protest in The New Despotism against the tendency of the Government Departments to exercise not merely legislative but also judicial functions, was no doubt partly responsible for the appointment in 1929 of the exceptionally strong Committee on Ministers' Powers. His complaints are substantially confirmed in its Report, which indicates that the powers conferred upon Ministers by Statute should be closely watched and strictly defined. On the legislative side it is doubtless impossible for Parliament, overworked and hampered by its own procedure, not to leave the Departments the power of making rules and regulations concerning endless details. But Parliament could and should adopt at once the Committee's suggestion that a Standing Committee should examine every Government Bill and see that the rule-making function is duly circumscribed. It is even more important that Ministers should refrain from making judicial decisions, taking upon themselves the work of the Courts and often making the citizen feel that he is denied justice. The Committee's Report demands not merely close attention but immediate action. Departmental autocracy may have been less evident since the War, but it is still a serious menace to our liberties.” The Spectator, p.2, May 14, 1932.

Whilst Lord Hewart’s efforts may have stunted and slowed the administrative 'power-grabbing' process, it definitely did not stop the drive and rot of subversion from within. If you need proof of this fact, try gaining access to a properly convened common law court in Britain today.

If the constitutional practice of granting Royal Assent had been more vigorously scrutinised, the encroachment of statutory legislation into the jurisdiction of our common laws would not be permitted.  (Please see this post - Failed Constitutional Checks and Balances.)

This use of statutory legislation is not invalidating common law, as the common laws of the land exist in a higher jurisdiction, beyond the reach of parliamentary Statutes and Acts.  However, it is the growth in the appearance of the dominance of statutory jurisdiction that is having the deliberate effect of bureaucratically obscuring common law in a false appearance of obsolescence. The common law still exists and holds all its power for those who understand it and wish to access its protection.  It is only the People’s awareness which has been eroded.  Conversely it is through increased public awareness of this matter that some redress can be sought.

When viewing the global picture and observing the same pattern of growth of Roman Civil Law in other common law nations, the appearance of a background agenda emerges.  This practice appears to have a definite and very long-term purpose of subtly steering the direction of our future governance towards the dominance of State power, not just nationally but internationally, at the expense of the true common law democracy of the People.

Common law courts are being properly convened in Britain and other nations, not by the State but by the People.  Their success now depends upon the awareness and the will of the People to support them.  (www.commonlawcourt.com)