Saturday, November 21, 2009

My Constitution, Section 2

Section 2 - Application to Australian jurisdictions

Section 2 is a dictionary of crucial concepts relating to government and governance. They are not the only concepts that are defined, but they are the ones most needed to get things started because they will be invoked from very early on.

2(1)    A law is any rule of action (including interpretations) that must be obeyed on pain of being made subject to force; and a just law is one intended to prevent, proscribe, punish or remedy an initiation of force by detailing the rightful use of retaliatory force in a manner consistent with morality.
This covers both statutory law and common law, and in turn the laws could be of any jurisdiction (Federal, State, or lesser). Laws are the subsidiary principles of action required for the pursuit of justice. It is the purview of philosophy of law to identify them in the first instance, and then of legislators and judges to give them the backing of retaliatory force, both in the name of justice.

A law in politics (as distinct from a law of science) is to be differentiated from other principles of action applicable to men. They are the oughts that other men will impose by reference to use of force in response to lack of obedience, and are distinguished from rules men personally ought follow but which other men wont impose by force.

In turn, a just law is one made by men with reference to the oughts they are properly morally entitled to impose by force. This is when the force in question is proper use of retaliatory force, where a law is an identification of what constitutes a breach of rights and what the responses to it can be. Just laws are differentiated from unjust laws in that the latter are wrongful uses of force, such as imposition of religious morality or the ethics of socialism, and so on.

2(2)    A jurisdiction is the sum of expanses of property in lands, waters, airspaces and aerospaces whose owners and residents have agreed shall form a single bloc such that one body of published law shall apply equally throughout those properties; and a given expanse may be of two or more jurisdictions where the subject-matters of their respective bodies of law are mutually exclusive.
A jurisdiction is a region over which one entity has the monopoly on the proactive use of retaliatory force on behalf of the residents of that region. The law of that region (which is the ‘juris’ part of the word) is the specification of when and how that force will be used, and justice requires that it be properly laid down and made well known (which is the ‘diction’ part) so that people know what to expect and can make their plans accordingly.

Moreover, in a large nation with two or more tiers of government the tiers are responsible for different types of law. Each still has a monopoly on the use of force, and so their respective bodies of law are expected not to try to cover the same ground.

2(3)    A government is an organisation answerable to the owners and residents of a given jurisdiction and given sole authority to make, execute and judge according to a body of law; and when not qualified as to power refers to any Executive, Legislative or Judicial body, and no other body; and when not qualified as to jurisdiction, means any level of jurisdiction within Australia.
This is straight forward enough. Justice requires there be a body with a monopoly on the proactive use of retaliatory force. That body is called a government.

2(4)    A State is government, formerly of an independent colony, created and empowered to use proactive retaliatory force for internal protection of rights in a given jurisdiction; and all references to States includes Territories except when State-proper or Territory is specified.
This is mostly a combination of clarification of one of the two tiers of government mentioned in this Constitution and a nod to the history behind their transformation from originally being top-most tiers for themselves to being second-tier governments within a broader jurisdiction.

In fact, now that the broader jurisdiction has been established, the original States need not even continue existing in their present form. Indeed, there have been plans to eliminate the current Australian States and replace them with a larger number of smaller bodies. They were called “super councils” at the time, referring to that the plan was essentially the elevation of importance of the third-tiers of government to second-tier status, which would include amalgamation of some of these local governments of smaller townships to form sufficiently large bodies. Whether anything like this might one day go ahead is for people themselves to decide. All this Constitution does is allow for it, which it does in the second to last chapter.

2(5)    ‘Australia’ means the combined sum of all jurisdictions in the Commonwealth of Australia, ‘Australian’ in reference to individuals or property means any or of any citizen, resident or expatriate, and in reference to organisations means those whose primary offices are in Australia.
This is the identification of the nation, and of the broadest jurisdiction to which this Constitution applies. Within Australia, governments are obliged to fully protect Australians' rights, whereas outside the borders the extent to which expectation of protection of rights is legitimate begins to fall away. More on that part later.

2(6)    The Federal Government is the government empowered to use proactive retaliatory force against threats to all Australians in general, whether from foreign powers (be they governments or not) or improper action by State or lesser governments.
The Federal government is the top-most tier of government.

2(7)    ‘National security’ means the rights and interests of all Australians in general and in such contexts as arise when any or all rights in principle of Australians are under threat from any foreign or domestic power.
National Security will be invoked a number of times, and this was the best place to identify what it actually means.


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