No Treason: The Constitution of No Authority [Lysander Spooner] on Amazon. com. *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. But whether the Constitution really be . 10 Jan Treason by Lysander Spooner · No. 1.→ Spooner issued three pamphlets carrying the title of No Treason, numbered 1, II, and VI. Spooner. No Treason: The Constitution of No Authority. December 9, Lysander Spooner. The greatest case for anarchist political philosophy ever written. Narrated by.

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No Treason

In lysanfer numbers, the author hopes to show that, under the principle of individual consent, the little government that mankind need, is not only practicable, but natural and easy; and that the Constitution of the United States authorizes no government, except one depending wholly on voluntary support. The corporation can exist past the lifespan of its original owners, but only by people taking ownership of it voluntarily over time, not by some kind of forced ownership by descendents.

The question of treason is distinct from that of slavery; and is the same that it would have been, if free States, instead of slave States, had seceded. And when we have found this thing, which the constitution dare not name, we find that the constitution has sanctioned it if at all only by enigmatical words, by unnecessary implication and inference, by innuendo and double entendre, and under a name that entirely fails of describing the thing.

Each one can say for himself: This principle was a true one in If anyone denies my right, let him try conclusions with me. The North has thus virtually said to the world: And if this action of each individual were valid and rightful when he had so many other individuals to keep him company, it would have been, in the view of natural justice and right, equally valid and rightful, if he had taken the same step alone.

If the instrument meant to say that any of “the people of the United States” would be bound by it, who did not consent, it was a usurpation and a lie.

Works — Lysander Spooner

Still, Spooner does not believe it treason should be alleged when one is open about their opinion. We are obliged to xpooner out of the instrument and grope among the records of oppression, lawlessness and crime–records unmentioned, treasin of course unsanctioned by the constitution—to find the thing, to which it is said that the words of the spoone apply.

He is none the less a robber, tyrant, and murderer, because treaon claims to act as their agent, than he would be if he lsander acted on his own responsibility alone. It was also only as so many individuals, each acting for himself, and exercising simply his natural rights, that they revolutionized the constitutional character of their local governments, so as to exclude the idea of allegiance to Great Britain ; changing their forms only as and when their convenience dictated.


With spkoner in mind, Spooner expresses his argument against consent to the majority in seven points that act as closing arguments for this specific section:. They were not traitors in fact, because they betrayed nobody, and broke faith with nobody.

There is, therefore, no alternative but to say, either that the separate, individual consent of every man, who is required to aid, in any way, in supporting the government, is necessary, or that the consent of no one is necessary. They can’t bind people who are not parties to them, including those not yet born. First, Spooner argues that the North was involved with slavery by simply allowing for its institution to take place in the South in order for the Southern states to remain part of the Union.

They do nothing towards proving that the governments themselves are legitimate; or that they ought to be sustained, or even endured, by those who np their true character.

To say that majorities, as such, have a right to rule minorities, is equivalent to saying that minorities have, and ought to have, no rights, except such as majorities please to allow them.

In doing this, they no more commit the crime of treason—which necessarily implies treachery, deceit, breach of faith—than a man commits treason when he chooses to leave a church, or any other voluntary association, with which he has been connected. As long as there is no imminent danger present because of one’s beliefs against the government, everyone’s voice should be respected.

Either “taxation without consent is robbery,” or it is not. By allowing for the institution of slavery to take place, the United States was taking away the basic rights of the many slaves who were born in American soil.

So far, therefore, as the Colonial Legislatures acted as revolutionists, they acted only as so many individual revolutionists, and not as constitutional legislatures. The Constitution itself, then, being of no authority, on what authority does our government practically rest?

On the contrary, those governments, as governments, were organized under charters from, and acknowledged allegiance to, spoiner British Crown. Return to Book Page. It would be very curious to see a man indicted, convicted, or hanged, otherwise than as an individual; or accused of having committed his treason otherwise than as an individual.

Majorities, as such, afford no guarantees for justice. The only arbiter I acknowledge is the sword: However, when the men and women lived under the rule of the British Crown decided to express sploner thoughts and act as individuals, their consent was present by not allowing for the rule of Britain to take over their lives, and proceeding to revolt against the British Empire. They simply exercised their natural right of saying to him, and to the English people, that they were under no obligation to continue their political connexion with them, and that, for reasons of their own, they chose to dissolve it.


The most that can be inferred from the form, “We, the people,” is, that the instrument offered membership to all “the people of the United States;” leaving it for them to accept or refuse it, at their pleasure.

Section 4 then restates the question “What is implied in a government resting on consent? In closing the section, Spooner looks on the idea of voluntary belonging to political parties and groups.

He then describes a scenario in which people who resist subjugation might be killed, even by the hundreds of thousands. But nothing of that kind can be said now, if the principle on which the war was carried on by the North, is irrevocably established.

No Treason, Vol. VI.: The Constitution of No Authority by Lysander Spooner

And she claims that she has done all this in behalf of liberty! And spoonner make it binding upon any one, his signature, or other positive evidence of consent, was as necessary as in the case of any other-contract. But they are not traitors in fact; inasmuch as they betray, and break faith with, no one. As lusander outspoken abolitionist, Spooner did not believe that any American should be treated differently under the natural law.

No Treason, Vol. VI.: The Constitution of No Authority by Lysander Spooner – Free Ebook

Having pledged no faith, they break none. Thanks for telling us about the problem. He makes commentary on the funding of the Civil War by the North, and questions the idea of consent directly stated under the United States Constitution. The most they can say, in answer to this question, is, that some half, two-thirds, or three-fourths, of the male adults of the country have a tacit understanding that they will maintain a government under the Constitution; that they will select, by ballot, the persons to administer it; and that those persons who may receive a majority, or a plurality, of their ballots, shall act as their representatives, and administer the Constitution in their name, and by their authority.

No principle, that is possible to be named, can be more self-evidently false than this; or more self-evidently fatal to all political freedom.

Spooner was an outspoken abolitionist writing The Unconstitutionality of Slavery in and advocate of universal freedom and natural rights, but had been horrified by the brutality of the war, and the lack of legitimate constitution basis for violently conquering people noo wanted to leave a lysamder that had been consensually joined only by their ancestors. In behalf of the principle that government should rest on consent!