Since our inception, Camp Constitution has opposed an Article V Convention. We have held outreach events and press conferences at state houses providing legislators important information on the subject. We have sponsored a speaking, and media tour for Robert Brown in Maine and New Hampshire. Camp Constitution’s director Hal Shurtleff, has conducted numerous presentations on the issue throughout the region. We have interviewed experts on the subject on our radio show including Andy Schlafly, Robert Brown, Publius Huldah, Tom DeWeese, David Super, Bob Marshall, Richard Fry, Shawn Meehan, Joe Wolverton, and Peter Boyce. We have also have video interviews of Attorney and scholar John Eidsmoe, Larry Pratt of Gun Owners of America, Zach Lautenschlager of the National Association of Gun Rights, former U.S. Senator Bob Smith, and Maine State Rep Sheldon Hannington. Camp Constitution Media was on hand to videotape presentations by Constitutional scholar Edwin Vieira, Alan Keyes, Attorney Deborah Stevenson. We also have a video of Cenk Uygur and Larry Lessig calling for a “runaway” convention, and a video of left-wing law professor Meg Penrose calling for an Article V Convention to repeal the 2nd Amendment.
We have created a YouTube playlist with these interviews.
We also have a collection of audio interviews available as free downloads on our Podomatic page: https://shurtleffhal.podomatic.com/
Our web site has a collection of articles, flyers , a model resolution to rescind, and the book “Formation of the Union Under the Constitution” which contains Governor John Hancock’s circular letter against an Article V Convention in PDF. Here is the link:
As of this writing, all applications for an Article V Convention in 2018 were defeated. Let’s make 2019 a year where we not only stop any new resolutions but rescind existing resolutions as well-one was already filed in New Hampshire. Readers who would like to be put in contact with activists in their states are welcome to contact Camp Constitution’s director Hal Shurtleff (857) 498-1309 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Please consider donating to Camp Constitution. Donations can be made via our PayPal account which can be accessed via our website’s homepage http://www.campconstitution.net
November 10 at 5:37 PM
This is a letter my husband wrote to Greenpeace about them and all the people that think that oil and oil products are not needed on earth or peoples daily lives.
So to all you oil industry haters, maybe you should read this and come to reality!!!
Also please, to everyone out there that agrees, share like crazy!!!
Dear Greenpeace personnel,
I am a very concerned 41-year old Canadian family man (yes, male, I can still distinguish), born in a small village in Saskatchewan and currently residing in Medicine Hat, Alberta. I would love to assist your organization in making the world a better place. I recently read a quote from Mr. Stewart that ‘oil in Alberta is unnecessary’ and something about ‘only clean energy’ (of course I am mildly paraphrasing but it was the gist of the CTV article). Now, I can tell you that I was angered by these comments. So, as Greenpeace has all the answers, I thought who better to contact other than the fine individuals of your organization.
Now Issue # 1 is transportation: As almost everyone in Canada is not living in the GTA, what is the cleanest form of transportation that you could recommend for my family (which includes my wife, 2 teenage daughters, and the family dog)? Public transportation across the prairies (to visit family) is almost non-existent since the closure of Greyhound and STC (Saskatchewan Transport Company). Even when the bus lines were fully operational, 10 to 14-hour bus trips to get from point ‘A’ to point ‘B’ were way too long and fares for the family were too expensive. I should also mention a normal drive time for a personal vehicle is approximately 6 hours. So, with public transportation out of the question, I need to own a vehicle. Please recommend a vehicle on the market that has no oil products in it. Maybe, if I can get personal on some level, what kinds of vehicles are most commonly owned by Greenpeace executives/employees? I only ask because as I read the news (and any other publication that posts the comments of individuals such as Keith Stewart), apparently Greenpeace has no use for oil and oil produced products, as they all pollute the earth. Climate change, you know. So, should I buy an electric car … NO, I can’t. As a rational, reasonable thinking Canadian, I am aware that electric cars are full of … NO, wait … Almost COMPLETELY composed of, and manufactured with/by oil-based products. I guess electric cars are out too. Horseback? NO. Riding on horseback would get me into all kinds of trouble with the good people over at PETA and WWF. Don’t want them trying to shut me down. My best guess is that none of you folks over there own a personal vehicle. Well let me know which way to go on that one.
Issue # 2, food: Now I’m sure that no one from the world of Greenpeace buys that grubby food produced on and from farms across Canada. Those farmers use an abundant amount of diesel to produce every scrap and morsel of food that can be found in every grocery store across this great nation. I mean seriously, how is it that all Canadians can’t understand this simple truth. Milk, bread, meat, vegetables, etc. have all come from a farmer, who I can promise you, owns a tractor. Tractors burn a lot of fuel. If you were or are unaware of this revelation, I will guarantee these facts, as I was born and raised on a Canadian farm. ALL the food consumed from the store has come from a farm somewhere. Then to top it off, those grocers have everything packaged one way or another to keep food fresh and sanitary (God knows we can’t have someone else’s germs on our food). Again, oil issues, all that packaging (to keep the food safe) is made with and by oil products. Honestly, it feels like I can’t win. So, like activists, I have a garden for all our food. However; protein (you know, meat) is a real issue. City bylaws say I’m not allowed a pig (for pork products such as bacon and such), or a cow (steaks). I can have five chickens. I guess those teenage girls I mentioned earlier are going on a diet. I am very concerned for the well-being of people living in apartments (where gardens are impossible). By the way, where do you get all your food from?
Issue # 3, heating: This is a touchy subject. How would a man as intelligent as Keith Stewart and other lead activists heat their homes? Now I am somewhat intelligent as I only have a Grade 12 education from a small prairie high school (not big city educated), but I can’t figure this one out for two reasons. Natural gas … I don’t think so! Pollution! That clean burning gas from the ground is still produced by Big Oil (we hate those guys). I was going to switch to coal but, carbon tax (pollution, again). Wood burning is not the way to heat our homes, it’s soon going to be illegal to cut down trees (emissions, again). Solar energy, well, that doesn’t stand a chance in Canada. Geothermal would almost be the way to go if it didn’t require drilling and glycol-based fluids. I don’t need to tell you folks the ecological effects that a glycol spill has on the environment and animals. Wind turbines would be almost effective if they weren’t so expensive to set up and not to mention the amount of poor birds that would die as a result. PETA, again, would not be pleased. So, please help, I currently have no way to heat my home that isn’t a pollution issue.
Issue # 4, electronics: As we all hate Big Oil, we must destroy all electronic devices. No computers, phones, tablets, etc. If it has a computer chip, a plastic-coated wire, a power cord, I mean if even one component of any device/machine contains oil and/or oil by-products, it must be destroyed. Big Oil is not going to keep you and me from our dream of a better planet. No more electronics … I can’t write this letter, businesses everywhere can’t operate, you can’t get your points across. Maybe we need oil? What do you think?
If we (as a country) are not going to produce oil, whom/where does Mr. Stewart want us to buy it from – as I think we have established that it is currently a requirement in every Canadian household including yours? The obvious answer must be the Saudi’s, America or maybe Venezuela (all environmentally-conscious places, right …?). Which does leave me curious, if all our oil is imported, does the carbon tax go up or down? Maybe imported oil is carbon free? The Liberal government would have Canadians believe that the carbon tax will stop global warming. You men and women are smarter than that, right? I’d like to think that as Canadians we should support Canadian oil as it is one of the most regulated oil producing countries on the planet.
Is everyone at Greenpeace living in a time warp? Are you all individuals who are living off the land, being 100 percent self-sufficient? If you are, you wouldn’t be able to read this email. However, we both know that you have the ability to do so, which means Greenpeace is also on the Big Oil wagon. Please don’t be ashamed. Just own it. Stop preaching to the masses. When your organization and personnel are willing to walk your own talk, then I guess we’ll have something to discuss.
Are you so blinded by tofu farting hippies that you can’t see the plain truth? Let us all be honest, organizations such as yours and the ones like it are not willing to make the hard sacrifices to accomplish any real change. Like almost every lobbyist group, you’d prefer to bitch and whine about everything until the donations stop coming in and then move on until the next money-making issue swings around. Granted; Greenpeace started with admirable beginnings, but like all good ideas, it always ends up about the money. Or am I way off base?
I do expect a response, for if I don’t get one … you’re going to find this letter on every news feed and publication that will print it. I will send it to Ottawa (not a threat with the current ‘leadership’, but the Conservatives might listen). I’ll post it on every social media outlet I can sign up for and people will read it. I know that the loudest voice is the one the public hears the best. By now you must understand that you can’t be the only voice for people to listen to.
As you may have guessed, there has been no response from Greenpeace, so, here we go.
If you agree with my thoughts, please feel free to discuss, forward, share, post, etc. We can no longer sit back and let others be the only voice that the public, activists, government, etc. are listening to you. I think that with our oil built electronics, we must circulate this letter. Let’s get people talking. Thanks for your help.
The emormous failure of our government school system was nicely
summed up by a Boston high school teacher in a recent issue of Education
Week (12/9/98). He said:
“I have about 30 kids in my U.S. history class. They come from nine
different countries; most of them can’t read. Even if they can read the text,
they don’t know what it means. How am I supposed to teach U.S. history to
kids who can’t read? I could come in here every day for 20 years and still
not figure out how to do it.”
Obviously, this particular teacher had no idea how these kids got into
high school without knowing how to read. He had no idea what goes on in
primary school that prevents these children from learning to read, and he
had no idea what to do with older students who are functionally illiterate.
Clearly, the teacher himself is part of the problem. His ignorance of how the
system functions prevents him from helping his students get through it in
one piece. In other words, the compartmentalization of teachers explains
why so many of them have no idea of how the total system works and why
the system can lurch from crisis to crisis without any effective change taking
The real blame for the system’s dysfunction, however, must lie with the
professors of education, the state departments of education, and the
administrators who have all conspired to create the functional illiteracy that
plagues the public schools of America — once considered the most literate
and advanced nation on earth. Deliberately induced illiteracy among
students is a vital part of the plan to dumb down Americans so that they will
be unable to resist the imposition of social and political control by an
arrogant universitarian elite determined to create a new world order based
on humanist-socialist values.
This “education” plan is part of the utopian socialist agenda set down
by the progressives at the turn of the century. The progressives were
members of the Protestant academic elite who no longer believed in the
religion of their fathers. They put their new faith in science, evolution, and
psychology. Science explained the material world (matter in motion),
evolution explained the origin of life (organisms crawling out of the
primordial ooze), and psychology explained human nature and provided
the elite with the scientific means of controlling human behavior.
These men were also socialists. Why? Because they had to deal with
the problem of evil. The Bible tells us that evil is the result of man’s innate
depravity, his innate sinful nature. But since the progressives did not
believe in the Bible, they decided that evil was caused by ignorance,
poverty, and social injustice. And what was the cause of social injustice?
Why, it was this horrible capitalist system with all of its inequities. Socialism,
it was believed, would remove these inequities and thereby solve the
problem of evil. By the way, the progressives did not get their model of
socialism from Karl Marx. They got it from an American by the name of
Edward Bellamy whose book, Looking Backward, published in 1888,
projected the fantasy of a socialist America in the year 2000.
And so, the progressives, dedicated to their utopian ideal, decided to
do all in their power to change America from an individualistic, capitalist,
and religious society into a socialist, collectivist, humanist or atheist society.
How were they to accomplish that? Through the education system. They
would change the curriculum and teaching methods in the public schools so
that American children would emerge as young socialists willing to change
our way of life into a socialist one.
The socialists realized that the transformation might take as much as a
hundred years to complete. In fact, John Dewey wrote in 1898: “Change
must come gradua.lly. To force it unduly would compromise its final success
by favoring a violent reaction .” Dewey then outlined the long-range strategy
which the progressives were to adopt:
What is needed in the first place is that there should be a full and frank statement
of conviction with regard to the matter from physiologists and psychologists and from
those school administrators who are conscious of the evils of the present regime.
Educators should also frankly face the fact that the New Education, as it exists today, is
a compromise and a transition: it employs new methods but its controlling ideals are
virtually of the Old Education. Wherever movements looking to a solution of the
problem are intelligently undertaken, they should receive encouragement, moral and
financial, from the intellectual leaders of the community. There are already in
existence a considerable number of educational “experiment stations,” which
represent the outposts of educational progress. If these schools can be adequately
supported for a number of years they will perform a great vicarious service. After such
schools have worked out carefully and definitely the subject-matter of the new
curriculum,–finding the right place for language-studies and placing them in their right
perspective,–the problem of the more general educational reform will be immensely
One hundred years later we can see how successful the Dewey plan
has been in transforming our educational system into one that serves the
needs of the atheist socialist state. Dewey was aided and abetted by a
cadre of reformers that included such luminaries as Edward L. Thorndike,
James McKeen Cattell, Elwood P. Cubberly, George D. Strayer, Charles
Judd, James R. Angell and a host of others. Thorndike, Cattell, and Strayer
ra~ an educational mafia out of Teachers College (Columbia), Cubberly
reigned at Stanford, and Angell became president at Yale.
Change in the curriculum of public education has happened so
gradually that most parents haven’t the faintest idea what is happening to
their children, four million of whom are being drugged daily with Ritalin so
that they can sit in their classroom seats and be socialized without
What is truly amazing is the coherence and continuity of the
progressive agenda which is as much alive today at it was when Dewey and
company were pontificating. For example, The Whole Language Catalog, a
sort of bible of the whole-language movement published in 1991, has 15
entries for John Dewey in its index. After citing his debt to Dewey, Kenneth
Goodman, the leading guru of whole-language philosophy, writes:
Whole language picks up where the progressives left off . … [It] takes the
philosophy and positive, child-centered view of the progressive educators and adds
the knowledge of language, of learning, of child development, and of teaching, and
builds a strong scientific base under them . It is this combination of science and
humanistic educational and social philosophy that forms the foundation for whole
language curriculum . … We use the psychological concepts of Piaget and Vygotsky to
underscore Dewey’s concept of learning as transaction: pupils making sense of their
world and being changed themselves in the transactions. (p. 281)
In the early days, the progressives were mainly supported by the major
philanthropic foundations. Today the reforms are being underwritten by
federal and state governments. Three recent federal programs are funding
the massive restructuring of American education in accordance with the
progressives’ plans: Goals 2000 (enacted 3/31/94), School-to-Work
Opportunities Act (enacted 5/4/94), and the Improving America’s Schools
Act, a reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of
1965 (enacted 10/20/94). Thus, the Congress of the United States has
become an accomplice in the progressive plan to restructure American
education in the socialist mold.
Apart from needing the funds to carry out their plan, the progressives
also realized that coherence and continuity of their agenda over a hundred
years was vitally necessary if the plan was to be successful. Thus, in 1901
they created the National Society for the Study of Education, wherein the
progressive leaders would be able to formulate their programs of reform,
debate their effectiveness, and pass on the baton to their loyal disciples. By
studying their yearbooks, the first of which was published in 1902, one can
follow the inexorable progress of the socialist takeover of American
All of this was accomplished by tenured professors of education and
behavioral psychologists, working within a maze of well funded professional
organizations, publishing journals, writing textbooks, holding hundreds of
conferences, seminars, and conventions each year. None of this has been
visible to the average parent who puts a child in a public school. Parents
assume that their schools are run by local school boards, superintendents,
principals, and teachers. What they don’t see is the invisible hand behind
this constant pressure for reform that keeps recreating the curriculum .
The average teacher may feel that there is some kind of invisible hand
at work, but teachers would rather blame failure on cultural trends,
excessive television viewing, dysfunctional parents, and such student
disabilities as attention deficit disorder and dyslexia.
Obviously, this is a system of education that cannot be supported by
any Christian. Local control no longer exists. It was inevitable that a
government education system would become a federal system controlled
by those who have been leading us toward totalitarian socialism. Do I
exaggerate? To be convinced that the end goal is a totalitarian system, all
one has to do is read the Student Data Handbook for Early Childhood,
Elementary, and Secondary Education (NCES 94-303). This is the official
guidebook for the computerized data-gathering system dreamed up by our
totalitarian bureaucrats. The data will include massive information on
health, family, religion, attitudes, psychological assessments, etc. For
example, the attitudinal test is described as: “An assessment to measure
the mental and emotional set or patterns of likes and dislikes or opinions
held by a student or a group of students. This is often used in relation to
considerations such as controversial issues or personal adjustments.”
All of this sensitive, personal data will be housed in a central computer
in Washington making it easy for “educators” to control just about everyone.
But the question is simply this: does the government of a free people have
the right to collect this kind of information on all of its citizens for its own
political or social purposes? Should the government of a free people record
the attitudes and opinions of its citizens so that it can engineer thei r
The time has come for Christians to realize what has become of the
“land of the free and the home of the brave.” If Christians want to restore
the full measure of our freedoms, they will have to do what they are
reluctant to do: remove their children en masse from the public schools.
What is needed now is not accomodation to the plans of the American
Pharoah but a full-fledged exodus of Christian children. That’s the easiest
and most peaceful way to put an end to the socialist agenda and return
America to its basic constitutional principles. Will Christians have the
courage to do what must be done? That test will be upon us sooner than
A link to the above article from the archive: http://blumenfeld.campconstitution.net/Articles/What’s%20Wrong%20With%20Government%20Education.pdf
It would be hard to find a person living in America who is not familiar with the names Brett Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford. The media circus that preceded the confirmation of Justice Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court dominated the news for weeks, if not months, and will no doubt continue to do so.
A name not so well known today is that of Kermit Gosnell, the Pennsylvania abortionist who not only killed babies in the womb, but for those born alive, he severed their spinal cords with a technique called “snipping.” He also seriously maimed and had a part in the deaths of a number of his female clients. He is serving a life sentence in prison, and is the subject of the book, Gosnell: The Untold Story of America’s Most Prolific Serial Killer.
A movie was made based on the facts of the trial that ultimately sent him to permanent incarceration. However, originally it looked like the film would have the same fate as the millions of unborn babies who do not live to see the light of day. Not only could the filmmakers not find investors in pro-abortion Hollywood, but also their initial funding campaign had to move to a different funding platform after being cut off from their original one (Kickstarter). A new funding platform was enlisted in order to obtain the financial support from ordinary people to bring the film to fruition.
Well, the movie eventually was ready for release but was unable to be advertised on places such as National Public Radio (funded by taxpayer dollars) unless the word “abortion” was removed from any advertisement. The filmmakers would not bow down to such censorship. They waged an uphill battle to enable the film to be released in over 700 theaters around the country. The film opened on October 12, but has been embroiled in controversial decisions by some theaters to respond to inquiries that the movie was not showing when it was, and by failing to display posters that normally are placed when a film is on the schedule.
This subject matter should be required reading or viewing in every Christian family (including children) and churches. Why? Not only to learn about what makes a person take life rather than save life, but to expose the dark side of health departments and courts that allowed this despicable man to kill the unborn and maim and brutalize women (especially poor and minority women), all because the priority of these agencies was to do nothing that would stigmatize abortion. As one prosecutor commented, nail salons have more scrutiny than abortion clinics. Why? Because entrenched in our federal and state bureaucracies are those who will not allow abortion access to be constrained under any circumstances. This scenario is not an isolated case restricted to Philadelphia, but exists throughout the country.
One eye-opening moment for me came when I recognized a name, Tom Ridge, the first head of the Department of Homeland Security and previously the “pro-choice” Republican governor of Pennsylvania. While in office, his policies made sure that nothing would hinder legalized abortion in his state. That is why, and how, Kermit Gosnell could operate with impunity for over thirty years. As a matter of policy, bureaucrats and their superiors continually ignored the many complaints and red flags they received about Gosnell. They are, in reality, as guilty, if not more guilty, than the abortionist.
The authors and filmmakers of this book and movie were not pro-life when they began their expose. However, by their own admission they became anti-abortion by the time they had examined all the gruesome facts of the case. They could not conclude in good conscience that Gosnell was an anomaly. They realized, as did the jurors in the trial, that there was no significant difference between a good abortion provider and a bad one. In fact, one of the most telling scenes in the film occurs as a “proper abortionist” comments that she had performed over 30,000 abortions personally. Unlike the “cruel” Dr. Gosnell who snipped the spinal cords of inconveniently born infants, under her watch, if any baby survived the procedure, it would be given “comfort care,” the euphemism for being allowed to die.
Many times as I read this account and watched the film, I experienced disturbing physical reactions. After years of believing I knew all there was to know on this subject, I realized I did not. I then did an informal survey of people I know, asking if the name Kermit Gosnell meant anything to them. Sadly, it did not, thanks to the media blackout of most of the trial. Apparently, the media did not consider the horrendous crimes of this man newsworthy. What’s more, I discovered that, although the book had done quite well when it came to sales, it was kept from appearing as high as it rightfully belonged on The New York Times Bestseller List. While this is not surprising, it should tell us something about the entrenched warfare involved when it comes to the subject of the murder of the unborn.
The average person who deems himself pro-life needs to do more than just agree that abortion is wrong. I submit that we must make this the subject of routine conversation as a matter of course. Read the book; talk about the book; lend the book. Watch the film, and invite an “on the fence” acquaintance to join you. Let us not allow this subject to fall under that category of differing political views, and agreeing to disagree. I challenge you to fully enlist in this cause, if for no other reason than to avert the justifiable anger and wrath of God.
(This article is republished with permission from the author. It originally appeared on the Chalcedon Foundation’s blog: https://chalcedon.edu/blog/talk-about-a-cover-up
By Samuel Blumenfeld
Recently, a friend of mine, an antiquarian book dealer, bought a box of early 19th century
pamphlets at a book auction, among which was an 1828 Catalogue of Dartmouth College.
I had an opportunity to examine this fragile 24-page catalogue and was quite intrigued by
the Course of Study students were required to take in those days.
Dartmouth College, at Hanover, New Hampshire, as my readers may know, is one of
America’s prestigious Ivy League liberal arts universities. It was founded in 1769 by
Eleazar Wheelock, a Puritan minister, with a charter signed in behalf of King George the
Third of Great Britain. Indeed, it was the last colonial college to be chartered by the
King of England. By the way, that ancient charter, encased in glass, is on display at the
In 1816, the State of New Hampshire tried to convert the college into a state university by
amending its charter. The college objected, and it engaged Daniel Webster, an alumnus
of the Class of 1802, to argue their case against the State of New Hampshire before the
U.S. Supreme Court. The Court decided that the state’s amendment to Dartmouth’s
original charter was “an illegal impairment of a contract by the state” and thereby
reversed New Hampshire’s takeover, thus permitting Dartmouth to retain its
independence as a private institution, which is why it is still called Dartmouth College
instead of Dartmouth University, even though it confers all of the degrees of a university.
But my real interest was not so much in the history of this institution but rather in what
the students were expected to learn in their four years at Hanover. I shall simply record
what is in the Catalogue. Freshmen, in their First Term, studied: Titus Livius, Lib. V.
priores. Xenoph. Cyrop.& Anab. Adam’s Roman Antiquities. Aelianus, Polyaenus and
Theophrastus. Collectanea Graeca Majora. Danzel, 2 vols. Herodotus.
In the Second Term they studied Homer, Q. Horatius, and Porter’s Analysis. In the
Third Term they studied Hesiod., Arithmetick, and Algebra. In addition, there were
exercises in Reading, Declamation, Translation, and English Composition, through the
Sophomores, in their First Term, studied Thucydides, Demosth., Lysias. Tyler’s Elements
of General History. Cicero de Oratore. Euclid’s Elements of Geometry, 6 Books. Second
Term: Xenophon, Phil., Isocrates, Dionysus, & Plato. Excerpta Latina. Plain
Trigonometry. Mensuration of Superf. and Solids. Guaging. Mensuration of Heights and
Distances. Third Term: Surveying. Navigation. Campbell’s Rhetorick. Logick. Plus
Composition and Declamation.
Juniors, in their First Term: Taciti. Historia. Conick Sections and Spherick Geometry and
Trigonometry. Chemistry. Second Term: Eurip. Med. and Oed. Tyr. Natural Philosophy
and Astronomy. Paley’s Natural Theology. Third Term: Paley’s Moral and Political
Seniors First Term consisted of: Locke’s Essay’s. Butler’s Analogy. Stewart’s
Philosophy. Second Term: Cicero de Officiis. Greek Testament Reviewed. Edwards on
the Will. Say’s Political Economy. Paley’s Evidences of Christianity. Third Term:
Federalist. Plus Dissertations, Forensick, Disputes, and Declamations. Private Instruction
is permitted in the French and other Modern Languages.
Incidentally, tuition was $27.00. Room $7.00. Board for 38 weeks $54.72. Wood, Lights,
and Washing $9.75. Ordinary Incidentals $2.40. Total $100.87.
As you can see, not only has the dollar been incredibly inflated by now, but also the kind
of education today’s college students get has also been devalued. In some universities,
the first year is spent learning to read and write, which so many students were not taught
in their public schools. I was delighted that back in 1838 they were studying Say’s
Political Economy, which is one of the libertarian classics studied today by free-market
oriented students. And I wonder how many of today’s college students have read the
I have not seen Dartmouth’s current catalogue, but I assume that this great college has
also succumbed to political correctness, like so many other of our Ivy League schools.
But from reading this rigorous course of study that Dartmouth students in 1838 were
required to undergo, I can see how the great ancient Greek and Latin classics played an
important role in the development of the American intellect.
And today, few students are taught Logic, or how to think rationally. Left wing American
intellectuals have swallowed the poison pill of Marxist socialism and think nothing of
trashing Christianity, the religion upon which this great nation was built.
But the Tea Party movement indicates that things are changing. Even though we have the
most anti-American president sitting in the White House, there is hope that he will be
removed in the next presidential election.
Back in 1828, Andrew Jackson was elected President. His fight against the Bank of the
United States was an important issue in his reelection in 1832. You can be sure that the
students and faculty at Dartmouth had much to say about presidential politics. The fact
that they were reading the works of Jean-Baptiste Say (1767-1832) indicates they were
interested in the nation’s economy.
Say emphasized the importance of sound economic principles. He believed that freeing
the market was the best way to reduce poverty and eliminate the inequalities created by
state regulation. In a lecture given in 1832, he said:
“In general, it results from the study of political economy that it is best in most cases for
men to be left to themselves because it is thus that they reach a development of their
faculties. Only political economy makes known the true ties that bind men in society [the
benefits from free exchange]. It sets property on its true foundations, and shows its
relation to personal abilities [and] new inventions…. Instead of founding public prosperity
on brute force, political economy founds it on the well-understood [peaceful] interests of
That economic philosophy today is considered extreme, laissez-faire, libertarianism. But
in 1828, it made sense and was responsible for the enormous growth and development of
the American economy, which by 1928 had made America the richest, most technically
advanced, and powerful nation on earth.
Today, laissez-faire economics is considered passe. Government has grown so large, so
intrusive in our lives, that most Americans have become addicted to government control
of their very existence. Public employee unions have become our masters instead of our
servants. Every company and corporation in the country is at the mercy of environmental
regulators, and the value of our money is being manipulated and inflated by government
The students of 1828 had much to look forward to. But all that the students of 2011 can
look forward to is a mountain of government debt, trillions of dollars, that is beyond the
average mind to comprehend. And any attempt to return to sound economic and
political policies is met by howling public employee demonstrations, demagogic
Congressmen, and cowardly business CEOs.
With a revolutionary socialist in the White House, America is being ruled by a leader
whose very ideology calls for the destruction of everything that has made America the
greatest and freest nation on earth. Will we survive his destructive work? The
presidential election of 2012 will provide the answer.
Oh, what a tangled web we weave, when first we practise to deceive! — Walter Scott
2018 proved to be a horrible legislative year for the convention lobby. It measures its success by the number of State Legislatures it cajoles into passing applications[i] asking Congress to call a constitutional convention (con-con) pursuant to Article V of the US Constitution.
Fear of a “runaway” convention is the biggest obstacle to state legislators’ voting for Article V convention applications. So, in order to get their votes, the convention lobby misled legislators into believing convention Delegates can’t run away and propose “unauthorized” amendments or rewrite our Constitution. They said the convention will be controlled from start to finish by the very legislators whose votes they needed!
Thus, the con-con lobby contrived the false narrative that Congress can’t call a convention until it receives similar or identical applications from 34 states (two-thirds); that the Delegates would be limited to the subject/s listed on the state applications; and that an Article V convention is different than a “constitutional convention,” where our Constitution can be replaced.
To bolster these false claims, front groups for the globalist agenda have been pushing a number of applications on different subjects, as if each special interest group were applying for its own convention, e.g. to propose a balanced budget amendment (BBA); congressional term limits; overturning Citizens United, etc. State legislators, for the most part, believed what the convention lobby told them and voted for their state’s application when they agreed with the subject cited in the application.
But the convention lobby hit a wall in 2018 and failed to convince any new States Legislatures to pass applications.[ii] Article V convention applications now generate massive pushback from the grassroots of both parties, and state legislators are no longer easy targets for what convention operatives are selling. So, some operatives are testing a new strategy. They are ignoring their own deceptive talking points for allaying legislators’ fears of a runaway convention; they are reinventing how Congress should count to 34; and they are saying that enough states have passed applications already to trigger a convention!
The convention lobby is betraying the state legislators who believed them and cast their votes accordingly. Convention proponents now appear to have a multi-pronged approach with contradictory spins, depending upon their audience. They are appealing to Congress to call a general convention based on assorted, existing applications; and to state legislators to pass still more “limited” applications or possibly affirm applications from decades, even centuries ago–whatever works!
Article V provides that when two-thirds of the States (34) ask Congress to call a convention to propose amendments to the Constitution, Congress shall call a convention. The power to “call” the convention is delegated to Congress; and Art. I, §8, last clause, gives to Congress the power to make all laws necessary and proper to carry out that power. The Constitution doesn’t permit States to dictate how Congress goes about “calling” the convention or what Delegates may and may not do at the convention. The only power the States have is to ask Congress to call the convention. See this Chart.
Our only precedent for an “amendments convention” is the Federal Convention of 1787 which was called by the Continental Congress “for the sole and express purpose of revising the Articles of Confederation.” But instead, the Delegates ignored Congress’s limiting instructions (and the limiting instructions from their States) and wrote a new Constitution – the one we have today.
Opponents point out that Delegates to an Article V convention, as sovereign representatives of “We the People,” would have the inherent right to throw off our Form of Government, as expressed in the Declaration of Independence, para 2. And in Federalist No. 40 (15th para), James Madison invoked “the transcendent and precious right of the people to abolish or alter their governments” as justification for writing a new Constitution at the federal convention of 1787.
Moreover, we don’t know who the Delegates would be or how they’d be selected! Why wouldn’t they be susceptible to the same bribes, threats and temptations as members of Congress and State Legislatures? The framers and other wise men have warned that convention Delegates can’t be controlled.[iii] It is because of these acknowledged dangers that the con-con lobby constructed its false narrative.
Major players pushing the con-con
Five groups have had significant success pushing Article V convention applications at State Legislatures in the last five years. Each of these groups claims passage of their legislation in 34 states to be their goal.[iv] They also claim a convention called by Congress on their behalf would necessarily be limited to the subject of their group’s application. The first four groups are from the phony right:
Hundreds of Applications
There have been hundreds of Applications for an Article V convention since our Constitution was ratified in 1788, yet Congress has never called a convention. COSP uses this fact to assure state legislators that Congress counts the applications by subject, and a convention would be limited to the scope of the application. From the COSP website,
“We have never had a Convention because we have never had two-thirds of the States agree on the subject matter. State legislatures control the subject matter. Just as the calling of the Convention is subject to the subject matter limitation, all stages of the Article V process are likewise prohibited from going outside this limitation.”[xi]
But it is up to Congress to decide which applications to count and how to count them. Perhaps Congress never had what they consider “active” applications from two-thirds of the States. Congress didn’t start a formal process for keeping track of Article V convention applications until 2015. Moreover, whatever way Congress chooses to count applications has no bearing on the Delegates’ plenipotentiary powers to throw off the Constitution we have and set up a new one.
Up until 2018, half-truths and misleading arguments, along with a multi-million-dollar propaganda campaign, netted the convention lobby some degree of success. But by January, 2018, their legislation came to a grinding halt at Legislatures nationwide due to grassroots opposition, and convention operatives were forced to rethink their strategy.
Natelson’s new way to count to 34
Enter Rob Natelson, the convention lobby’s go-to guru, who announced in 2010 that the words “constitutional convention” would no longer cross his lips.[xii] Natelson redefined an Article V convention as a “convention of the states,” thus implying that State Legislatures will control the convention and thus can prevent a “runaway” convention.
Similarly, on May 9, 2018, in 9,000 mind-numbing words, Natelson audaciously told Congress how to count to 34.[xiii] If he can no longer convince state legislators to jump aboard a sinking ship, perhaps he can convince Congress that the ship already made it to port!
To wit, Natelson defines “plenary” or “unlimited” applications as those existing applications that don’t mention a subject in their “operative” (Resolved) clauses. Many of these ostensibly unlimited applications are peppered with references to averting the civil war (1861) or the direct election of senators, the latter which Congress addressed with the 17th amendment (ratified 1913). Natelson treats these “plenary” applications as wildcards in a game of rummy and says they should be added to any group’s count. Natelson found 6 wildcards to add to his BBATF count and voila! Natelson declares BBATF 97% of the way to its goal– just one state short of 34.[xiv]
Natelson concludes that Congress should count all “plenary” applications on its way to 34, but that the convention called would be limited to the subject of the narrowest application counted. His scheme would double COSP’s wins, triple that of Wolf-PAC, quadruple CFA’s, and boost US Term Limits by a factor of 8! Natelson gives any new group promoting a con-con on any subject, e.g. the definition of marriage or repeal of the Second Amendment, 15 wildcards right out of the gate –propelling them almost halfway to the finish line!
In fact, Congress can count applications however they like. So Natelson’s method qualifies as one way for Congress to count. What is shameless on Natelson’s part, however, is that his convoluted scheme contradicts the snake oil sold to state legislators to pass pro-convention legislation. For years, COSP and Natelson have been adamant that applications need to be identical or similar to aggregate.
ACF’s inconvenient truth
On the heels of Natelson’s attempt to resuscitate the con-con movement comes a “white paper”[xv] dated June 15, 2018, from the American Constitution Foundation (ACF), a new group that admits they are “focused on a strategy to trigger a Congressional call for an Article V convention…prior to the Nov. 2020 national elections.” ACF appears to be still another group of apologists for the con-con movement with ties to BBATF, COSP and other Koch-funded organizations.[xvi] Or they may be a front group for all major players.
ACF’s white paper is an admission, long asserted by those opposed to a convention, that an Article V convention can’t be limited by subject:
“ACF contends Congress can only call a general convention for proposing amendments, irrespective of the subject or set of subjects specified in applications. This would be a plenary convention by nature…and is commonly referred to as a general convention or a constitutional convention[xvii], [xviii]…”
For purposes of counting applications, ACF counts only applications that don’t specify an exclusive purpose for calling a convention.[xix] Interestingly, ACF counts COSP applications as aggregating for a plenary or general convention, since one of its subjects, the “‘power and jurisdiction’ is what the Constitution is all about”!
Thus, ACF admits that a congressional call can’t limit a convention by subject, and Delegates can’t be limited by the scope of the application. It then follows that any convention called would be a convention for all factions, and Delegates could propose any amendments or write a completely new Constitution.[xx] This clearly puts Soros and the Kochs on the same team.
Conveniently, ACF’s own aggregation study counts 37 states with valid applications and concludes that Congress already has sufficient applications to call the convention. ACF agrees with opponents that convention Delegates can propose any amendments irrespective of the subject of the application. But because ACF fails to consider the Fundamental Act of our Founding, the Declaration of Independence, it denies that a new Constitution could result.[xxi]
ACF says that the limited-by-subject narrative: 1) isn’t supported by evidence; 2) contributed to the convention lobby’s legislative failures; and 3) empowered their opposition.[xxii] That may be, but proponents used that narrative to deceive legislators into thinking they could control Delegates in order to win legislators’ “yes” votes on the applications. And now that con-con applications are failing, ACF, like Natelson, is test-driving an alternative way to get to 34 with already-passed applications.
But ACF realizes that catapulting themselves over the finish line overnight doesn’t fit the old narrative, and it will take some convincing for Congress and state legislators to believe a convention has been triggered already.[xxiii]
A Slippery Slope
Might convention operatives be going down a slippery slope here? They’ve spent 5 years and untold millions of dollars convincing state legislators that an application limited by subject is the first line of defense in preventing a “runaway” convention.
And now, with State Legislatures blocking their applications at every turn, operatives are desperate to trigger a convention any way they can. So, they are contradicting one of their most widely-believed deceptions and admitting that a convention can’t be limited by the scope of the application. This makes hundreds of previously-passed applications available for counting to 34. And there may be as many ways to count as there are applications!
Will this reversal backfire? Might more legislators realize that if the grassroots opposition was correct about Article V conventions being unlimited, they might also be correct about State Legislatures being unable to prevent a runaway convention[xxiv] or Delegates having the inherent right to abolish our Form of Government?!
A Tangled Web
The con-con is on life-support, but convention operatives are cunning, heavily funded, and not about to give up easily. Their massive propaganda machine rolls on to convince legislators that their constituents give a rip about an Article V convention. They work through fake news and, seemingly, anything that money can buy, like a big payroll, pricey software, misleading surveys, petitions,[xxv] endorsements from celebrities with no expertise on our Constitution, former US Senators with a knack for leaning on state legislators, lobbyists, internet trolls, media promotions and appearances, hype, hoopla, and more.
Despite huge losses, convention operatives are doubling down in their fight against truth and logic. They are testing a politically premature victory shout in order to induce Congress to call a constitutional convention before state legislators discover they’ve been duped and rescind applications en masse. The major players, entrenched in falsehoods, are unlikely to embrace a general convention publicly.[xxvi] But it is telling that none have disavowed the new spin either.
We now have some convention proponents and possibly all opponents agreeing that conventions can’t be limited by subject. This alone should be a wake-up call for legislators who have been deceived into supporting Article V applications.
Rescission is the key
It is only because of 2016 and 2017 rescissions of all their previously-passed Article V convention applications that Delaware, Maryland, New Mexico and Nevada are not on anyone’s list of states with valid Article V applications.[xxvii] And know your history! The balanced budget amendment (BBA) movement isn’t new. By 1983, 32 states had passed applications asking Congress to call a convention to propose a BBA. This, too, was a globalist movement to replace our Constitution using a “conservative” issue to snare Republican votes.[xxviii] It was only because 16 State Legislatures rescinded their applications between 1988 and 2010 that the scheme was thwarted for a generation.[xxix]
[i] Article V convention applications are passed by State Legislatures as bills or resolutions.
[ii] Except redundant applications. See subheading: Major players pushing the con-con: 4) US Term Limits.
[iv] When states pass CFA bills, they are right then and there ratifying the amendment which delegates massive new taxing powers to Congress. So, CFA seeks 38 states, the number of states needed to ratify an amendment.
[vi] HI, IA, ID, KS, KY, MD, MN, MS, NC, NE, NH, SC, SD, UT, VT, WA, WV, & WY.
[vii] BBATF passed applications in 16 states between 2010 and 2017 and counts 12 similar applications passed between 1976 and 1983. But in 2018, BBATF applications were rejected by KY, ME, MS, SC, VA & WA.
[viii] US Term Limits (USTL) passed its application in FL (2016), AL (2018) & MO (2018). Those states previously passed COSP applications asking Congress to call a convention to, among other things, limit the terms of office for federal officials and/or members of Congress. USTL failed to pass in at least nine states in 2018: AZ, GA, MD, ME, MS, NH, SC, TN, & VT.
[ix] Bruce Parker, “Soros in Vermont: Leftist billionaire behind state’s call to keep money out of politics,” Watchdog, 6 May 2014.
[x] CO, HI, IA, LA, MA, MD, ME, MO, NE, NM, OK, SC, WA, WI, & WV.
[xii] Robert G. Natelson, “The State-Application-And-Convention Method of Amending the Constitution: The Founding Era Vision,” 16 Sept. 2010, 10.
[xiv] In getting to 33, Natelson accepts 27 of BAATF’s count of 28 and adds 6 “wildcard” states that hadn’t already passed a BBA application.
[xv] American Constitution Foundation, “White Paper on an Article V General Convention of States, 15 June 2018, 1.
[xix] Ibid., 1.
[xx] James Madison said it best: Letter to Turberville, 2 Nov. 1788. “…a General Convention…would be courted by the most violent partizans on both sides…[and] would no doubt contain individuals of insidious views who under the mask of seeking alterations…might have a dangerous opportunity of sapping the very foundations of the fabric [of our country].”
[xxviii] “The Ford Foundation’s Pursuit of Globalism: The Con Con Connection,” Patriot Coalition
[xxix] Larry Greenley, “Save the Constitution by Rescinding Article V Convention Applications” The New American, 12 Jan. 2016.
 Article V convention applications are passed by State Legislatures as bills or resolutions.
 Except redundant applications. See subheading: Major players pushing the con-con: 4) US Term Limits.
 See Brilliant Men flyer.
 When states pass CFA bills, they are right then and there ratifying the amendment which delegates massive new taxing powers to Congress. So, CFA seeks 38 states, the number of states needed to ratify an amendment.
 Nancy Thorner, “Koch Brothers’ Money Funds Pro-Con Con Agenda,” Illinois Review, 19 May 2017
 HI, IA, ID, KS, KY, MD, MN, MS, NC, NE, NH, SC, SD, UT, VT, WA, WV, & WY.
 BBATF passed applications in 16 states between 2010 and 2017 and counts 12 similar applications passed between 1976 and 1983. But in 2018, BBATF applications were rejected by KY, ME, MS, SC, VA & WA.
 US Term Limits (USTL) passed its application in FL (2016), AL (2018) & MO (2018). Those states previously passed COSP applications asking Congress to call a convention to, among other things, limit the terms of office for federal officials and/or members of Congress. USTL failed to pass in at least nine states in 2018: AZ, GA, MD, ME, MS, NH, SC, TN, & VT.
 Bruce Parker, “Soros in Vermont: Leftist billionaire behind state’s call to keep money out of politics,” Watchdog, 6 May 2014.
 CO, HI, IA, LA, MA, MD, ME, MO, NE, NM, OK, SC, WA, WI, & WV.
 Robert G. Natelson, “The State-Application-And-Convention Method of Amending the Constitution: The Founding Era Vision,” 16 Sept. 2010, 10.
 Robert G. Natelson, “Counting to Two Thirds…,” Federalist Society Review, 9 May 2018, Vol. 19.
 In getting to 33, Natelson accepts 27 of BAATF’s count of 28 and adds 6 “wildcard” states that hadn’t already passed a BBA application.
 American Constitution Foundation, “White Paper on an Article V General Convention of States, 15 June 2018, 1.
 American Constitution Foundation, White Paper, 1.
 Ibid., 1.
 James Madison said it best: Letter to Turberville, 2 Nov. 1788. “…a General Convention…would be courted by the most violent partizans on both sides…[and] would no doubt contain individuals of insidious views who under the mask of seeking alterations…might have a dangerous opportunity of sapping the very foundations of the fabric [of our country].”
 American Constitution Foundation, White Paper, 7 (conclusion).
 Publius Huldah, “Why states can’t prevent a runaway convention,” 16 Sept. 2017.
 Idaho Rep calls COSP petitions “high-tech fraud,” Rep. Priscilla Giddings: Should Idaho Support a constitutional convention?, Gem State Patriot News, 16 Dec 2017.
 US Term Limits is the only group to date that publicly acknowledges they could be at 25 states (instead of three) “based on one legal interpretation.”
 Although in an Aug. 13, 2018 ARTICLE, Natelson makes a silly case for discarding rescission resolutions from 7 states because their terminology doesn’t conform to the false narrative.
 “The Ford Foundation’s Pursuit of Globalism: The Con Con Connection,” Patriot Coalition
 Larry Greenley, “Save the Constitution by Rescinding Article V Convention Applications” The New American, 12 Jan. 2016.
 To get a new Constitution, the con-con lobby needs a convention. Which Constitution will be proposed at the convention? George Soros wants a socialist Constitution by 2020; the Koch Brothers appear to want a constitution moving the United States into the North American Union; the Ford Foundation commissioned the Proposed Constitution for the Newstates of America which forms a dictatorship.
 Delegates, as Sovereign Representatives of the People, are not answerable to State Legislatures (which are “mere creatures” of the state constitutions) or to Congress (which is a “mere creature” of the federal Constitution). Therefore, delegate laws cannot control Delegates; they are designed to give legislators a false sense of security in voting for Article V convention applications.
© Judi Caler
Judi Caler lives in California and is Article V Issues Director for Eagle Forum of CA. She is passionate about holding our public servants accountable to their oath to support the U.S. Constitution.
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