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Tennessee General Assembly

The  Tenth Amendment Center reports that the Tennessee senate has passed legislation on Friday to halt any attempts at enforcement of any international law that may regulate the the use, ownership or possession of firearms and ammunition if it is in violation of Tennessee statute, common law or the state constitution.  This aligns with HB2389 which passed the house last month.

The article, which can be seen here, quotes Rep. John Windle, speaking on the house floor in March that “This bill prohibits any interference of [the right to keep and bear arms] by international treaty.”

This is good news for Tennessee gun owners.


The Knoxville News Sentinel reports that a bill is rapidly progressing through the Tennessee legislature to protect police body cams from public review for up to a year.  According to the Sentinel, HB876, witch has approval from the House State Government Subcommittee, would “declare a general one-year ‘moratorium’ on public disclosure of any police body camera footage, starting on July 1.”

Tennessee’s Sunshine laws that regulate government meetings, requiring them to be in a public forum to avoid the appearance of collusion, are some of the most restrictive in the country.   However, apparently any police activity that has already occurred, either positive or negative, should remain in the dark.

The Tennessee Coalition on Open Government and the Tennessee ACLU have already spoken out against the bill as currently approved.

HB876 should suffer a quick death.  The sooner the better.

Visit the TLA on Facebook for discussion.

The Tennessee Liberty Alliance will host an open forum on January 11, 2014 for Knoxville regional residents to learn more about the current ideas and implementations for the Knoxville region that are guided by Plan East Tennessee (PlanET) and the Knoxville/Knox County Metropolitan Planning Commission (MPC).

We all desire a thriving and healthy community as we move into the future, and it should be no surprise that there are many different ideas being put forth as to how to get there. Come with a friend and discover the latest ideas and plans of the MPC and PlanET, and how they will affect you and your family for generations to come.

Join moderator David “Shyne” Thompson, MPC’s TPO director, Jeff Welch, and other area leaders to discover the pertinent facts regarding this critical topic of “sustainability”. Local topics, including Westland Cove, will be open for discussion.



REGISTER HERE or copy and paste the link below to reserve your spot.


Governor Bill Haslam recently announced he plans to put off the decision on whether to form the health care exchanges outlined in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, after HHS Secretary Kathleen Sibelius extended the deadline for states to notify the federal government until Dec. 14.

No doubt, the governor is getting significant pressure from both sides of the exchange fight, with insurance company lobbyists emphasizing that they’d prefer to work with the state government instead of the federal government, while individual citizens and employers are mounting a lobbying effort of their own against the exchanges.

One has to wonder if perhaps Haslam isn’t waiting in the hope that Tennesseans will …. to read this entire article by Lesley Swann, please CLICK HERE.


This past Thursday August 4th, Representative Frank Nicely, Franklin Sanders and myself were invited to Nashville for a meeting with the state Treasury Secretary David Lillard.   Frank Nicely set this meeting up for us after Franklin and I went to Frank’s farm east of Knoxville weeks ago and sat on the front porch for a few hours discussing state monetary policy and establishing favorable legislation for hard-backed money(gold/silver) within our state.

We had about a 30 minute discussion with David Lillard and a couple other gentleman who were invited into the office by him.   Franklin presented several charts and technical analysis concerning the metals markets and mentioned the commodity bull market cycle we are now in.   We discussed the flaws that the Tennessee Retirement Fund has in it’s investment allocation and how and why that needs to be changed to take advantage of the current economic cycles that are in place. I left a folder full of information with David concerning Utah’s recent hard currency legislation, the Univ.  of Texas endowment funds purchase of a billion dollars in physical gold, South Korea’s huge gold purchase just last week and even Andrew Jackson’s Farewell Address which is phenomenal reading about currency, bankers, gold backed money and the efforts by some to undermine this great country via currency laws.

Overall, I think the meeting went well and we seemed to be well received.  The Treasury Secretary nodded numerous times in agreement with our statements and his comments were positive and it was readily apparent that he was tuned-in to our message and it was not lost on him.   He mentioned to Frank Nicely toward the end of the meeting that we needed to meet with the Revenue Commissioner to discuss our topic and find out the impact of removing all state taxes from bullion sales in Tennessee.   That meeting with the Revenue Commissioner will be the next item on our agenda I guess.

It is my hope that we can get support for our proposed legislation from the Governor and numerous others like our Treasury Secretary prior to taking a bill to the legislature in early 2012.   It will make our efforts much easier and more likely to succeed. My concern is I don’t know if we have enough time to make our legislation something that all Tennesseans can take advantage of because the marketplace now seems to be breaking down very quickly right now and bullion prices could be twice as high by the time we actually have an opportunity to get a favorable bill passed removing state taxation on gold and silver purchases.   These are issues totally out of our control so we will press forward and let that play out as it will.   I thought many of you would be interested in these efforts and I hope it instills a desire in some to become more active in state policies as citizens of Tennessee.  We can make a difference if we are willing to make an effort to do so.  It’s a freedom of choice we all still have thankfully.

There has been a lot of talk about nullification, both in the liberty-minded population of Tennessee and across the entire nation.   Thomas Woods, author of Nullification: How To Resist Federal Tyranny in the 21st Century, points out that “Jefferson himself introduced the word “nullification” into the American political lexicon, by which he meant the indispensable power of a state to refuse to allow an unconstitutional federal law to be enforced within its borders.”

Note to Tennessee General Assembly:  please direct yourself to the term “unconstitutional federal law.”  You know, unfunded mandates, tyrannical federal overreach into the state’s right to, well, be a state.  Obviously the Tennessee General Assembly, almost in its entirety, apparently read that as the “U.S. Constitution” when they recently voted to nullify the first amendment of the United States Constitution making free speech a criminal offense.

Oh yes, there are vague stipulations of someone else having to be offended or frightened by the one that is exercising their right free speech.  But what exactly does that mean?  Who guides that slide down the slippery slope? For an excellent summation of this new Tennessee law (that takes effect in 2 weeks!), please read Tennessee Outlaws Jerks by Lesley Swann.

The Tennessee General Assembly is an embarrassment to the people of Tennessee that put them there.  Unbelievable.

On Tuesday, Senator Stacey Campfield’s bill SB0127 to restore popular election, as required by Article VI Section 3 of the Tennessee Constitution, was heard and debated by the Senate Judiciary Committee.

The good news, it passed 5-4 with an unusual tie breaking vote cast by Lt. Governor Ron Ramsey.

The bad news, Senator Doug Overbey violated his oath of office and told the Senate Judiciary Committee not to use the State Constitution as a means for voting to restore a constitutional requirement.

Listen to the discussion here: http://lastcar.blogspot.com/2011/03/here-is-video.html

Senator Overbey’s egregious remark begins at about the 10 minute mark, “You should only vote for this bill if you think direct election is the best policy.  Period.  If you think it’s the best policy then vote for it, but don’t use the Constitution as a means for voting for it.”

Here is my email to Senator Overbey, as he is suppose to “represent” me.

Dear Senator Overbey,

Article VI Section 3 of the Tennessee Constitution states: The judges of the Supreme Court shall be elected by the qualified voters of the state.

You took an oath to the Tennessee Constitution, but you clearly violated it on Tuesday with your vote against restoring the election of Supreme Court Judges.

Since you are in violation of your oath of office, you have two options: resign since you have no intention of honoring your oath of office, or repent and vote for this bill when it comes before you again.

Those are the only honorable things to do.  Otherwise you lied to the people of your district and ultimately to all Tennesseans and you should be ashamed of your unfaithfulness to the Constitution.

Let freedom ring!


Kudos to Senator Brian Kelsey for refuting Senator Tim Barnes erroneous belief that only the Supreme Court can determine the meaning of the State Constitution.

The state Constitution and state law requires publication of  legal notices. That is because if the government is going to take some action to limit or change our rights, or take away our property it must go out and seek to provide public notice to the citizens of the potential action.  It is not  mandatory that you read it but a good faith effort must be made by the state to provide the information.

This year several bills have the State Legislature considering doing away with the publication of public notices in local newspapers in order to save money.

Before you conclude that is a good idea, take a look at some facts and read further in this Tennessean guest editorial by Rep. Susan Lynn.

As the 107th General Assembly begins work this year in Nashville, there seems to be some genuine interest in effecting some redlight camera legislation that would have some impact in Tennessee.  These recently introduced bills range from limiting their use and revenue allocation to downright making them illegal.

Reps. Ryan Haynes and John Ragan were on hand Thursday night at the January TLA meeting and spoke of their different approaches to a sore subject to many in Tennessee.  Rep. Haynes approach is a bill (HB 0061) to amend the TCA that “prohibits issuance of speeding tickets based solely on evidence from traffic enforcement camera.”  Rep. Ragan’s approach to the same subject is to tightly restrict the appropriation of the revenues generated by surveillance cameras to education.  His bill (HB0033), “requires that 95 percent of revenue from traffic violations resulting from traffic surveillance cameras be earmarked solely for educational needs of local governing entity.”

In the senate, Sen. Stacey Campfield, also present at Thursday’s meeting, has introduced legislation (SB0054) that “prohibits a traffic citation in Knox County for not coming to a complete stop before turning right on red at certain intersections that is based solely on evidence from a traffic surveillance camera.”  This bill has been spotlighted on WBIR in Knoxville recently.  A video is available on Campfield’s blog for viewing.

Rep. Frank Niceley, from Stawberry Plains, was also on hand at the meeting.  He and Rep. Haynes presented a broad overview as to what to expect from the General Assembly this year.

State Representatives Ryan Haynes and Frank Niceley will be special guests at the upcoming meeting of the Tennessee Liberty Alliance on Thursday, January 20.  The meeting will take place at the New Harvest Buffet in Oak Ridge, Tennessee at 7:00 PM.  Reps. Haynes and Niceley will be sharing their insights on the upcoming legislative session and answering your questions.

Be sure to come early and enjoy a good meal and social time before the meeting.

"Whenever the people are well-informed, they can be trusted with their own government."
...Thomas Jefferson