Front Page Titles (by Subject) XI. - No Treason. No. II. The Constitution
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XI. - Lysander Spooner, No Treason. No. II. The Constitution 
No Treason. No. II. The Constitution (Boston: Published by the Author, 1867).
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No attempt or pretence, that was ever carried into practical operation amongst civilized men—unless possibly the pretence of a “Divine Right,” on the part of some, to govern and enslave others—embodied so much of shameless absurdity, falsehood, impudence, robbery, usurpation, tyranny, and villany of every kind, as the attempt or pretence of establishing a government by consent, and getting the actual consent of only so many as may be necessary to keep the rest in subjection by force. Such a government is a mere conspiracy of the strong against the weak. It no more rests on consent than does the worst government on earth.
What substitute for their consent is offered to the weaker party, whose rights are thus annihilated, struck out of existence, by the stronger? Only this: Their consent is presumed! That is, these usurpers condescendingly and graciously presume that those whom they enslave, consent to surrender their all of life, liberty, and property into the hands of those who thus usurp dominion over them! And it is pretended that this presumption of their consent—when no actual consent has been given—is sufficient to save the rights of the victims, and to justify the usurpers! As well might the highwayman pretend to justify himself by presuming that the traveller consents to part with his money. As well might the assassin justify himself by simply presuming that his victim consents to part with his life. As well might the holder of chattel slaves attempt to justify himself by presuming that they consent to his authority, and to the whips and the robbery which he practises upon them. The presumption is simply a presumption that the weaker party consent to be slaves.
Such is the presumption on which alone our government relies to justify the power it maintains over its unwilling subjects. And it was to establish that presumption as the inexorable and perpetual law of this country, that so much money and blood have been expended.