The Texas Sovereignty Act: The Right Direction, But Not Far Enough

Photo by Daniel Mayer

Here’s another article I submitted to the Texian Partisan.

For most in Texas, the problem with the federal government squeezing the sovereignty of the states, much like Boris Karloff choking the life out of his creator in Frankenstein, is a huge concern. Filed on February 23rd for the current Texas Legislative session, a bill known as The Texas Sovereignty Act, or House Bill 2338, attempts to block all unconstitutional actions of Congress, the courts, or the Executive branch from being enforced in Texas.

This bill proposes the creation of a permanent Joint Legislative Committee on Constitutional Enforcement. This committee would consider if a federal act was passed with the appropriate original-intent authority of the US Constitution. If the committee votes that improper authority was used in a federal action, they would then deliver their finding that it was unconstitutional to the Texas legislature. If the Legislature concurs, they would then pass a resolution and forward it to the Governor. Finally, if the governor signs it into law, that federal action would become illegal in Texas, as well as making those attempting to enforce the nullified action in danger of prosecution from the State of Texas. Furthermore, the government of Texas would formally inform the federal government that Texas will not comply with said action.

First, I would like to state that I admire the spirit with which this bill was written. It’s very specific in how it defines and proposes to deal with the very real threat of un-constitutional power-grabs by all branches of the federal government. It makes me proud as a Texan to think that such a bill could even be considered and such a line of thought is definitely a step in the right direction towards reclaiming Texas’ stolen sovereignty. There’s only one problem: it’s not likely to work.

Let’s examine the wisdom behind taking on Washington while still being very much under its control. The moment that Texas nullifies its first federal act, it’ll be war with DC. It’s not as if they’re going to say “Our bad!” and back down. Now I’m just speculating, but with speculation based on real-world analogs (some which I’ve hyperlinked to), and this is what I think likely to happen. It will begin with threats from the executive and condemnation in congress. No doubt, someone will challenge it in court, with an unaccountable judge waiting in the wings to anxiously ready to imagine a reason why Texas… can’t! In the meantime, congress and the president will begin punitive actions against Texas. They’ll try to disrupt commerce, seize large swaths of Texas land, shutdown airline travel, withhold federal funds, forget to enforce the border, etc. Even if all this fails to temper Texas’ resolve, don’t look to Washington to ease the pressure. That’s when they’ll get creative, finding new torments and slights of the pettiest kind, knowing that they must make an example of Texas or else other states will start asserting their 10th amendment rights. Under such pressure, what then will Texas do?

I absolutely agree with the authors of this bill that DC is acting in an illegitimate manner and something needs to be done, but Washington’s been this way for a very long time, and merely telling the modern incarnation of the federal government that they can only exercise the powers enumerated them by COTUS is like telling a heroin addict to stop trainspotting. How many junkies have sobered-up that way? Not very many, I’d wager. For an addict to recover, he must first be isolated. COTUS is supposed to be our means of isolating the government, but there’s not enough collective political will left in the Union to commit our junky. And as we all should know, Washington is incapable of reforming itself.

The only way to effectively deal with Washington is to declare our legal right to peaceful independence. Once we’ve given Washington notice that they are in breach of contract, and our partnership is nullified, the recourse of D.C. has to punish us with its courts, regulatory state, or our own money dangling as a carrot to preferred action will be effectively zero. They’ll be out of the picture, restrained by the knowledge that their status in the world and the outcome of negotiations (which the US will want) will be hampered by harassing behavior. Besides, if you consider the ends of half-measures like TTSA, they’ll probably lead to independence, ultimately. After all, when the federal government doesn’t back down, Texas will have little other recourse than to reclaim full sovereignty, that is unless we back down, adopt a submissive posture, and embrace our status of DC drone. Such a humiliating result to this risky gambit would be a waste of time, bring unnecessary suffering, and justly doom the careers of every Texas politician who lost their spine.

It’s time to face facts and abandon partial solutions. The federal monster, created by the states, is loose, wrecking all in its path. If we go at Washington with the 10th amendment, they won’t be impressed, and will do their best to make life miserable for Texans. The only way to deal with this monster is to unmake it, at least as far as Texas is concerned. And why not? At this point, Texas needs Washington like an oak needs termites. If we assert our right to leave the union for interfering with our sovereignty, a right remanded to the states in COTUS and claimed in the Texas Constitution, then we can build our own nation free from interference from the Potomac, making our own decisions on how to govern. Forgive the 80’s film reference, but the only way to win at the federal power game is not to play.

– Ryan Thorson

New President, Same Problems, Same Bad Solutions.

Well, it’s official. Donald Trump will be the next President of the United States. The electoral votes have been certified and the 2016 election is over. So what does this mean? Well, apart from the fact that there’ll be fewer political ads, not much.

For those (both hopeful and lamenting) expecting that Trump will usher in the Fourth Reich, you will be disappointed/relieved. For those hoping for substantive change in the way of reducing the power of the federal government over the lives ordinary citizens, for a new age of fiscal and personal responsibility, and for a renaissance of the Constitution and the ascendency of individual liberty over group entitlements, you also will quickly be disabused of such ridiculous notions.

The ensconced brokers of power are all still there, playing the same game, taking and giving nothing back. Zilch will be done about the problem of government, it’s just that the infernal machine will get a new pair of hands, pulling the levers that control our lives. Donald will do his deals with the ruling class, but don’t be surprised if you won’t be favorably included in them. The age of Trump will be not unlike the age of Obama. We will have a President who respects the application of power, not necessarily the traditions of the country nor the limitations of law. The President wants what he wants, and he’ll get it legally, if he can, but he’ll get it.

High on the Trump agenda will be some kind of a infrastructure bill, spending a lot of money that we don’t have, and doing as little good as when Obama tried it. Also, the Trump daughter’s pet entitlement program will be passed, another permanent leech on an already desiccated budget. And lest we forget, Trump will get his tariffs, which are the political equivalent of threatening to slit your own throat if your opponent doesn’t play fair. How would you like to pay four times the price you currently pay for your iPhone? Who wouldn’t?

In the end, the federal government will expand its power, balloon its debt, adversely affect commerce, and hope that the generation that pays the piper for all this can handle it while also funding our retirements. At $200 trillion in unfunded mandates and counting, I wish the little tykes luck!

Very little of any substance will change under this new regime. The car is still careening towards the cliff, only this time it’s the Democrat’s turn to feel bad about it. 2016 is the year the right officially un-friended the truth in exchange for the same feels-driven politics we used to criticize the left for. I imagine, the results will be just as spectacular.

If you are looking for real solutions to any of these existential national problems, you won’t find them in a President nor anywhere in DC. Too many voters and even leaders are too unprincipled and too uneducated about the issues to change any of this. And of those left who know better, they are more desirous of being a part of power than making tough choices that could save the US for future generations. The solution will have to come from the sovereign states.

For the people of Texas, we had better decide quickly whether it’s better to be a sad witness to a enormous car-crash or a passenger in that careening car. That cliff is getting closer each day, the steering is locked, and the breaks don’t work. Texas has everything it needs to be a successful independent nation including the legal right. Now it remains to be seen if we have the will and courage to act. We don’t have much time left to vacillate on this. Either we crash and burn or we tuck and roll.

-Ryan Thorson

Texit? Meet The Folks Making The Push For The Second Biggest State In The US To Secede

Here’s an article by the Daily Caller about the Texas Nationalist Movement featuring me and some of the other good folks at TNM!

Texit? Meet The Folks Making The Push For The Second Biggest State In The US To Secede

I Will Go With Texas

I just saw a meme declaring Trump to be the best man for the job (I can only assume they meant POTUS, for if they meant manning a shine box, I might agree). Words escape me to adequately describe how wrong that is. Evan McMullin is by far the more intelligent, competent, experienced, and conservative choice. However, we’re so Pavlovian when it comes to our two parties that his chances are slim.

It may be true, MAYBE, that Trump is a little less bad than Hillary, but that doesn’t make him even nominally fit for POTUS. Trump’s election would mean the abandonment of morality/ethics by the GOP, their full embrace of big government, the continued reduction of Liberty, the head-long sprint towards suicidal debt, and death of the supposed constitutional party. Also, you might want to come to terms with the fact that Trump won’t fight for what he doesn’t believes in (i.e. The Constitution), and he rarely listens to advice, so it would be wise to not put your hope in a President Trump surrounded by handlers with cattle prods, ready to give him a mild but memorable shock when he steps out of line! If he wins, be satisfied that you beat the Democrats… before it dawns on you that you’ve become the Democrats.

I will vote for McMullin, even if it turns out to be largely symbolic. Trump will have to take his chances without me. I’m not going to affix my name to that atrocity for the chance at slightly better than the most corrupt woman of our age. Yes, perhaps Hillary will win and thusly beat the rap, but I will only accept responsibility for that in the event that it comes down to one vote in Texas. At some point, Trump has to own his being as ethically and princibly challenged as he is. I will not support a candidate who would destroy all of which I believe, only more slowly than the other candidate. And, forgive me if I find HRC going to jail poor compensation for the loss of all that (assuming that it will happen, which I doubt).

It’s clear that the solution will not come from Washington. Right now, hundreds of thousands of Texans are preparing to legally and peacefully cut the oppressive ties that connect us to that Palatine on the Potomac (no matter which emperor is selected next week) and reclaim self-determination. The rest of the country can go down the road of authoritarianism and economic ruin, if they wish, but Texas didn’t sign on for that. So, in the spirit of Davy Crockett, this government “can go to hell and i’ll go [with] Texas!” #Texit


Here’s another article I wrote for the Texas Nationalist Movement!


And here’s where it was noticed, again, by the Houston Chronicle… and dismissed… again!

Although, I’m happy they noticed my calling them out on naming TNM President Daniel Miller as “Dennis Miller.” This morning that’s been corrected, so good on them!

The Houston Chronicle Goes on the Record about Texit, and I respond.

Recently, the Houston Chronicle decided to post an article dealing with one of my pieces regarding Texas independence. You can read that in the link ( They didn’t quite get things right. Also, their regular respondents attempted to malign the character of those who believe in Texas Independence, and substitute the actual arguments raised with the grotesque straw-men of their own imagination. So, I decided to respond on their site in five segments. Here’s the entire response.

I would like to thank the Chronicle for highlighting the views of many concerned Texans. I’m very pleased they took notice of my article, however I would like to address a few things.

First, let me assure those that may be confused, the Texas Nationalist Movement (TNM) is not calling for a place on the POTUS debate stage. If you read the ORIGINAL article, you’ll find that I was just marveling at how it only takes 15% interest to get such a national platform, but an issue like independence, that has greater support, tends to be ignored. I hope that clears things up.

Additionally, I’d like to take issue with the Reuters quote at the end of the article that seemed to downplay the number of Americans committed to Independence. Frankly, to describe 1/4 of the US or 1/3 of the Southwest states as “‘tiny'” is absurd. Elections tip on such numbers. Here in Texas, the number in favor of independence is stronger. Additionally, TNM has collected over 300,000 pledges to vote for independence when Austin gives us a referendum. With that many who are openly committed, experience suggests that this number represents many more who have not been quite so vocal. If given a chance at the ballot box, I’m confident that Texit would win the day, much as Brexit led the way of liberation to the U.K. from their own intractable bureaucracy.

I’d also like to address some of the concerns of your readers.  Members of TNM are Texans of many races and beliefs. Many of us (like myself) are veterans, and we are all very patriotic Americans, perhaps even more than the average American. This because we are patriotic for the thing that matters most, not the soil or the government, but the founding rights & principles of the U.S. contained in the Constitution; nothing more radical than that! It was to protect the principles of natural rights that our founding fathers seceded from Great Britain, and to those principles we are committed. In fact, we at TNM are so thoroughly loyal to that idea of America that we refuse to part with even one of our blood-bought constitutional rights!

It’s easy to forget that USA was very different than any other Union formed in the world. Most countries were built on loyalties of race/ethnicity, and had traditions that included the divine right of kings.  Not so with our own system of limited government, where the individual is sovereign. In current times however, instead of having to contend with a British monarch for our rights, it is our own federal government (originally conceived to protect Liberty) that every day takes progressively away decisions that rightly belong in the hands of individual citizens and consolidates them in their own inept grip, whether or not the Constitution (the supreme law of the land) grants them such authority.

As you may know, Texas’ relationship to the federal government is contractual, and a contract is only as good as the honor of the parties involved. If you were in a marriage where your spouse continually abused you and cheated on you, all while spending the money you had laid aside for your children, it is doubtful that a reasonable person would say to you, “Too bad! You have to stay married!” Certainly the founders didn’t believe this, and the 10th amendment of the Constitution reserves all power not given the federal government for States, including the power the leave the union. Furthermore, Article 1 of the Texas Constitution recognizes the inalienable right of the people “to alter, reform or abolish their government in such manner as they may think expedient.” It also asserts that the “perpetuity of the Union depend upon the preservation of the right of local self-government, unimpaired to all the States.” No one can honestly say that this condition of unimpaired local self-government still exists. Every day, the federal government finds new ways to insert itself into local affairs.

Now, if you are unconcerned with Washington’s unconstitutional assumption of powers that are supposed to be reserved for the states and the people, if you are un-phased by unending deficit spending, and if you are happy to see federal courts overruling Texas law with only their own biases to serve as guidance, I don’t suppose anything I say will change your mind. But if these things do concern you, then consider this: decades of work by honest Americans to change this course have at the best only slowed the rise of authoritarianism and the profligate spending of Washington. If you want to retain your rights of speech, religion, or to bear arms, then peaceful legal independence is the only way. If we would preserve our values and keep from sliding into the economic abyss, then we’ll have to go it alone. However, here’s the advantage! Overnight, all of that abuse and corruption would be gone! Texans would be free to form their own responsible government, making sure not to repeat the mistakes of the United States, while preserving its best principles for future generations. And while there can be no guarantees of Utopia, I am confident that Texans know better how to run Texas than a multitude of politicians and bureaucrats more than a thousand miles away.

It should be clear by now that we can’t save the United States. However, through regained self-determination, we might just be able to save Texas. The alternative is to accept the current state of affairs, which, make no mistake, are existential: the continuing loss of Liberty and the economic ruin that must come from a government that CAN’T stop spending money it doesn’t have. There are moments when the right choice is obvious, and this is one of them. I’m with Texas!

Ryan Thorson


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