La République de Libertalia
Concepts toward a modern, practical form of limited government
(a work in progress)
La République de Libertalia is founded, inter alia, on the recognition that power corrupts, that concentrations of power invite concentrations of corruption and that all democratic forms of government degenerate into a Tyranny of the Masses and; hence, the principal duty and prime directive of every official of government, whether elected or appointed, shall be to respect and uphold the natural rights of the individual against all incursions and particularly those incursions based upon or ostensibly justified by any consensus of any majority of citizens or their elected officials.
1. Seven members serve for life or until resignation.
2. Vacancies are filled by majority vote of remaining members.
3. Elect their own Chairman who also serves as Head-of-State and Commander-in-Chief.
1. Seven members (all at large) serve one-year terms.
2. Elected by direct citizen vote.
3. Eligibility for reelection is limited to five consecutive terms.
4. Elections are held on New Year’s Day.
5. Elect their own Chairman who also serves as Chief Executive Officer of the Executive Branch of the Government.
1. Seven members (of which three resign or stand for reelection each year).
2. Are not required to be attorneys or even formally trained in law.
3. Three members are elected by direct citizen vote and serve three-year terms (one incumbent resigns or stands for reelection each year).
4. Two are selected by the Founders’ Council and serve for two-year terms (one incumbent resigns or stands for reelection each year).
5. Two are selected by the Citizens’ Council and serve for two-year terms (one incumbent resigns or stands for reelection each year).
6. Elect their own Chairman.
7. Chairman of the Judicial Council nominates all lower judges (which serve for three-year terms) subject to the approval of both the Citizens’ and Founders’ Councils.
Bi-Cameral Legislature with Automatic Judicial Review
1. All legislation must be approved by majority vote of both the Founders’ Council and the Citizens’ Council and pass a review basic constitutionality by the Judicial Council before becoming effective.
2. All citizens shall have the right to challenge the constitutionality of any law which passes such review of basic constitutionality. Specific challenges to the constitutionality of any law may be initiated by any citizen in any court of La République de Libertalia.
Additional Limitations on the Powers of the State
1. There is no administrative law. All laws must pass all three Councils to be effective.
2. There is no labor law or labor unions. The state has no power to interfere with persons’ right to either sell their services or hire the services of others.
3. There are no protected classes. All persons are equal under the law.
4. There is no family law. The state recognizes marriage and cohabitation as cultural and religious traditions which have no legal impact on the parties. Married persons and cohabiters have no legal claim on the property or income of any other person unless specifically described in a written contract signed by both parties. In the event of divorce or dissolution, there is no alimony and no child support unless otherwise agreed to by the parties in writing. Unless otherwise agreed to in writing, both divorced parents share the responsibility for raising their children which the state takes no role in delegating or defining. There are no provisions for either “child abuse” or “spousal abuse” other than statutory and common law sanctions against assault and battery.
5. The state has no power to create or modify contracts entered into by competent persons the terms of which do not violate the natural rights of other persons. All contracts shall be in writing and signed by all parties thereto. There are no oral contracts. There are no implied contracts other than implied warranties established in the normal course of business.
6. No special legal status may be granted to any group, enterprise or individual.
7. No tax on personal income, real estate, imports, exports or estates is allowed.
8. No capital punishment is allowed.
9. No one may be incarcerated for a crime which does not result in a violent injury or direct threat of violent injury to another person.
10. The state may neither create nor operate any form of compulsory pension scheme.
11. The state may neither create nor operate any form of compulsory charity scheme.
12. There is no civil forfeiture. The state may not impose a de facto fine on a person not convicted of a crime.
13. All criminal defendants shall have the right to a trial by jury which shall have the power to decide not only the facts of the case but to nullify the specific application of any law or regulation in any situation it shall deem violates the natural rights of the defendant or is otherwise in any manner unjust.
14. Until a defendant has presented an equal measure of evidence both in terms of number and pages of exhibits and minutes spent in open court as that presented by the state against him, the right of a person to defend themselves against charges brought by the state shall not be infringed by the exclusion of any evidence or testimony which the defend shall wish to present.
15. Any person whom the state charges with a crime and does not within a year subsequently thereto obtain a conviction for or confession to such crime shall be reimbursed by the state for any and all reasonable legal expenses related to such person’s defense of such charges.
16. All persons shall have sovereignty over their own body. The state shall have no power to make it a crime to eat, drink, smoke or otherwise ingest anything.
17. All statutory laws and regulations sunset and expire (and must be re-passed to remain in effect) on the first day of January of the each new numeric decade.
18. Further limitations of the powers of the state may be imposed by a duly enacted amendment to the organizational charter but the natural rights of individuals may not be restrained and the state may not be granted additional powers by such process.