Thoughts, essays, and writings on Liberty. Written by the heirs of Patrick Henry.

“Democracy is based on the assumption that a million men are wiser than one man. How's that again? I missed something. Autocracy is based on the assumption that one man is wiser than a million men. Let's play that over again too. Who decides?”     Robert A. Heinlein

June 24, 2007

A wonderful first step – a person is arrested for voting

by tarran

I’ve long agreed with Lysander Spooner who wrote:

IX. The Secret Ballot
What is the motive behind the secret ballot? This, and only this: Like other confederates in crime, those who use it are not friends, but enemies, and they are afraid to be known, and to have their individual doings known, even to each other. They can contrive to bring about a sufficient understanding to enable them to act in concert against other persons; but beyond this they have no confidence, and no friendship, among themselves. In fact, they are engaged quite as much in schemes for plundering each other, as in plundering those who are not of them. And it is perfectly well understood among them that the strongest party among them will, in certain contingencies, murder each other by the hundreds of thousands (as they lately did do) to accomplish their purposes against each other. Hence they dare not be known, and have their individual doings known, even to each other. And this is avowedly the only reason for the ballot: for a secret tyranny; a tyranny by secret bands of tyrants, robbers, and murderers. And we are insane enough to call this liberty! To be a member of this secret gang of tyrants, robbers, and murderers is esteemed a privilege and an honor! Without this privilege, a man is considered a slave; but with it a free man! With it he is considered a free man, because he has the same power to secretly (by secret ballot) procure the robbery, enslavement, and murder of another man, and that other man has to procure his robbery, enslavement, and murder. And this they call equal rights!

If any number of men, many or few, claim the right to “govern” the people of this country, let them make and sign an open compact with each other to do so. Let them thus make themselves individually known to those whom they propose to “govern.” And let them thus openly take the legitimate responsibility of their acts. How many of those who now support the pretended “constitution,” will ever do this? How many will ever dare openly proclaim their right to “govern”?, or take the legitimate responsibility for their acts? Not one!

I therefore take a dim view of those who go out and vote for people. Like other crimes, such as murder or theft, I want it to go away entirely. So I am especially happy to hear that one Zoila Meyer has been arrested and charged with the crime of voting. Unfortunately, the state considers her act a crime not because she voted, but because she voted despite having spent the first 9 months of her life outside the United States. Normally, I would be sympathetic to her – after all most people who do vote do so defensively; few people I know voted for John Kerry to be president because they thought he would make a good one. Most of them voted for him because they wanted George Bush not to be president anymore.

I have no sympathy for Mrs. Meyer, because she voted out of desire for personal gain; she actually ran for office! The damning evidence:

She got the idea to run for office after she and several neighbors failed to save the job of a Bradach Elementary School principal. She worked the phones and got neighbors and other civic leaders to turn out and support the principal.

Even though the effort failed, many people told her she should run for office, she said.

Then, 10 days before the cutoff date to file as a City Council candidate, she was at City Hall paying her water bill and expressed her dissatisfaction with how little the city is doing to help children.

“I was in here paying my water bill and they said, ‘Why don’t you run, instead of complaining?’ ” Meyer said.

Unfortunately, an ex-in-law who had it in for her ratted her out for the crime of being born outside the United States:

She was living in nearby Adelanto when she was elected to the City Council there in 2004.

At that point, a member of her husband’s family who dislikes Meyer contacted officials and told them she was born in Cuba, prompting an investigation.

Eventually, “the police came to me and said, ‘Zoila, you’re not a citizen. You’re a legal resident but you’re not a citizen,’” Meyer said. She resigned after 10 weeks in office. “I apologized. It hurt me to do that, too,” she said

Having been arrested, she is becoming dimly aware of the true nature of the criminal gang that she almost joined:

“It makes me feel like we’re all just numbers,” she said of her case. “I see people writing ‘this is my country.’ It really isn’t. It belongs to the government and they decide who stays and who goes. You think you’re free: you’re really not. If they can do this to me, they can do it to anybody.”

But not completely: she is oblivious to the fact that she was, for a period of ten weeks a criminal too:

Meyer also said she doubted her case would have come to light if she had not run for a political office.

“Everybody flies under the radar. I try to do something positive for my community, my children,” she said.

The Kafkaesque moment comes when the judge concludes that she did not know she was lying when she claimed to be a U.S. citizen in her filing papers, but demands she stand trial anyway:

At a preliminary hearing Monday, the judge decided Zoila Meyer was under a misunderstanding of a federal law and believed she was a U.S. citizen when she filled out the candidacy application stating she was a citizen, said Deputy District Attorney Frank Vanella.

Meyer will still stand trial on two misdemeanor charges of fraudulent voter application and fraudulent voting, the district attorney said. The trial is set for Oct. 5 in Victorville Superior Court.

Mrs. Meyer, pleaded no contest to those charges. I think she needs to kick her lawyer in the crotch, since he obviously was working for the DA when he suggested she take a dive.

So now she faces an immigration judge, who will deport her unless she can convince him to let her stay in the United States. If she is unsuccessful, the United States government will put her on a plane to Canada.

But wait! The tale is even more Kafkaesque: it turns out she may have been a citizen all along!

The Daily Press spoke to a few Friday about her situation, and many said the same thing – if her parents were naturalized before she turned 18, she’s already an American.

According to attorneys, the law changes so often that it’s “confusing and convoluted” to the point that many lawyers and government agencies have no idea what the laws are.

Meyer said she was told the laws that apply to her are the one’s on the books the year she was born. ”

I think Charles Dickens said it best in “Oliver Twist”: “The Law is an ass – an idiot”.

Good thing that these guys aren’t in charge of our medical care, huh?

OK, Snark aside, I wish Mrs. Meyer the best of luck. I certainly hope she is not sent to Canada.

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