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Discussion 9 to Meditation 109
What is "religious justice"?

by: M.M.

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re: Giving power to the church (Discussion 4) and We will bring in new courts (Discussion 6)

Pauline Davis wrote

" ... my petition to the Prime Minister reclaiming half the power of the federal government, in order to give it back to the people, in the name of Jesus will bring about the separation of church and state."

Pauline Davis also wrote:

"You wanted clarification on just what power I was referring to for the churches, I just want to cut the entire package in two parts."

Let's compile a short list of what comprises the "package" whose power Pauline Davis wants to "cut...in two parts":

  • the power to pass, interpret and enforce laws, via the legislative and judiciary branches, the police force and the penal system
  • the monopoly power to create fiat money, via the central bank, increase its supply (inflation) via fractional-reserve banking and monetary policy, and enforce its exclusive use via legal tender and counterfeiting laws
  • the power to coercively extract the production of its citizens, via taxation
  • the power to seize property via "eminent domain" and "civil forfeiture" laws
  • the power to censure speech and publication
  • the power to regulate commerce
  • the power to control movement of goods and people across borders
  • the power to monopolize road ownership
  • the power to regulate and control broadcasting and telecommunications
  • the power to sanction the use of some drugs, via prescription laws, while prohibiting the use of other drugs, via the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act (CDSA)
  • the power to regulate and monopolize the practice of medicine
  • the power to interfere in the affairs of other countries
  • the power to engage in war
  • the power of "legitimacy by popular consent," symbolized by "democracy," elections and "majority rule"

I would echo JT, who asked "Just what are you asking for?"

Pauline Davis wrote:

"This will bring religious justice into the twenty-first century."

What is "religious justice"? It sounds like a Christian version of Sharia Law. In any event, it doesn't sound like "secular justice."

Pauline Davis wrote:

" ... we will bring in new courts to deal with our own people."

"We" means, presumably, Pauline Davis and other members of the Justice Review Board: an equal number of lawyers and clergy who will wield "half the power of the (Canadian) federal government." Who are "(your) own people," and who will decide what constitutes membership in this group? What do you mean by "deal with"?

Let's assume the prime minister of Canada and members of parliament have unanimously decided to instate a Justice Review Board as Pauline Davis has envisioned. What, for example, might be some of the JRB's actions?

from Pauline's website (www.thepeacelady.com):

"The petition is this:

We the people of * Canada, petition our * Prime Minister to grant us a Royal Commission to establish a Justice Review Board with the authority to amend the Constitution as they deem just. This board is to consist of an equal number of lawyers and clergy, thereby insuring the rights of all * Canadians.

Representatives of the clergy agree to adhere to the authorized King James translation of the scriptures and to be known hereafter as the Holy Covenant. The lawyers are to be paid by the country, the clergy to be paid by their respective churches.

Until legality and morality come together into reality there can be no such thing as justice."

I interpret this to mean that "morality," as defined by the JRB, will be enforced by law, and "immorality," as defined by the JRB, will be prohibited by law.

Also from Pauline's website:

"It is for this reason THE JUSTICE REVIEW BOARD must have the authority to amend the Constitution as they deem just. All laws demanded by the people must have top priority in the legislature coming ahead of all other business ..."

In my opinion, this ability of government to pass any sort of law that is "demanded" (by "the people," big business, lobbyists, special interest groups, ad infinitum) is perhaps the most significant flaw in democracy as currently practiced. The result is an ever-growing mountain of conflicting, unjust and frequently nonsensical laws, with a concomitant increase in the number of lawyers needed to interpret them, and the number of otherwise innocent citizens criminalized by them. The courts become clogged, society becomes "litigious," the "prison-industrial complex" expands, and the state sits back and laughs as oppression displaces individual liberty. The solution is not to enact any and all laws "demanded by the people," but rather to constitutionally restrict the kinds of laws government may pass, and the activities government may engage in, to a very small and narrow category, viz.: upholding the concept of private property, upholding the law of contract, upholding the non-aggression principle, and THAT'S ALL. Government must be forbidden from passing any laws or engaging in any activity that contravenes the above principles; it should certainly be forbidden from enforcing or "morality," which must remain a strictly private affair.

I want to stress that humans may influence other humans both persuasively and coercively, and while both of these constitute "power," governmental power is of the coercive type. Governments , regrettably, enjoy immunity from the consequences of their acts of aggression; we have granted them the proverbial "license to kill." So, when you ask for "half the power of the federal government," you are seeking not only coercive power, but coercive power without responsibility. This is the type of "absolute power" that Lord Acton famously warned "corrupts absolutely." This power, it seems to me, is the source of the very types of atrocities you have spent the last thirty years railing against. After centuries of religious tyranny, some societies have finally decided that granting this power to organizations calling themselves "churches" is not such a good idea. We have not yet learned that granting this power to organizations calling themselves "governments" is equally foolish.

Instead of proposing to expand the number of people to whom we grant this power, shouldn't we be looking at ways to shrink and eventually abolish it? Should we not, once and for all, fully embrace the non-aggression axiom and hold everyone, including churches and governments, to a strict adherence of this principle and all that it entails?

M.M.
Toronto