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Tag Archives: Definitions

Tuesday Night Radio: Reading is Guessing


American Independence Hour hosted by Alfred Adask; 8:00 PM to 10:00 PM Central time, Tuesday nights, on AmericanVoiceRadio.com and also on the KU band, free-to-air satellite link at Galaxy 19.  There’ll be call-ins at 1-800-596-8191.

 
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Posted by on October 21, 2014 in American Independence Hour, Definitions, Radio

 

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Reading is Guessing


Black's Law Dictionary:  Almost Every Word has Multiple Definitions [courtesy Google Images]

Black’s Law Dictionary: Almost Every Word has Multiple Definitions
[courtesy Google Images]

This is a long article.  Over 9,000 words.  It rambles in places.  I chase down rabbit trails to the right and to the left.  It includes some solid information and also some humorous anecdotes.  It’s undisciplined and in need of at least two more proof-readings. 

Nevertheless, I’ve been fooling around with this article for about two weeks, and I have to draw the line somewhere.  I have other fish to fry.  More, I believe the ideas expressed in this article may be so fundamental and so potentially powerful, that I’ve got to publish now—even if the text is not as clear as I might otherwise hope.

I think the implications of “Reading is Guessing” are important.  This may be one of the most important concepts I’ve ever presented.  I hope you’ll take time to read and consider this article.

Definitions

In the past five years, I’ve posted 23 articles that deal with “definitions” on this blog.  You can find a list of those articles here:  http://adask.wordpress.com/category/definitions/. Definitions aren’t simply useful or even important to the law, they are the essence of the law.

You can’t have law without words.  You can’t have words without definitions.  Definitions are the “sub-atomic particles” of meaning that turn a mere sound or collection of letters into a “word”.  If you want to detonate the legal equivalent of an “atomic bomb” in the courts, start tinkering with definitions.

As I pointed out in A.D. 2011, “Definitions are the Law of the Law”.

As former President Bill Clinton once observed concerning the meaning of a particular law, “It all depends on what the meaning of ‘is’ is.”  In other words, if you want to know what a law says . . . if you want to know what a law is . . . you must first grasp the definitions of each of even the most trivial and innocuous words used to express that law.

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Posted by on October 20, 2014 in Definitions, Notice

 

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Chief of State?


CIA seal

Image via Wikipedia

The CIA publishes it’s “World Factbook” at https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/.  This Factbook lists every nation on earth and provides a modest description of each nation’s history, demographics, natural resources, industrial capacity and income.  The Factbook is a particularly interesting document because it sometimes seems to tell the truth.

For example, if you visit the CIA World Factbook website, and enter “United States” into the search engine, you’ll see a description of a nation called “United States”. This description includes a map at https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/us.html.  This map is interesting because, while it includes the location of some major cities and rivers, it does not include any reference to the States of the Union.  Admittedly, the map is small.  Including the borders of each of the States of the Union might make the map extremely difficult to read.

On the other hand, the “Factbook” is published on the internet and there’s no apparent size limit sufficient to prevent the CIA from providing a map of the “United States” that’s large enough to identify all of the States of the Union–or even all the counties, if they cared to do so.

Therefore, some people believe that the “United States” being described by the CIA map is not merely an oversimplification.  Instead, they believe the CIA map is accurate and doesn’t describe any States of the Union because there are none in that particular “United States”.  Instead, we see a properly drawn map that corresponds to the singular territory that is sometimes described as “this state”.

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Definitions: The Law of the Law


A stack of legal dictionaries on a desk.

Image via Wikipedia

I’ve observed for several years that definitions are the “law” of the “law”.

For example, when the Bible commands “Thou shalt not kill,” does that mean “thou shall not kill anyone”?  Or does it mean “thou shalt not murder members of your own community, nation or race—but you can kill all the foreigners that you want?”

As Bill Clinton once observed, when it comes to knowing what a law means, “It all depends on what the meaning of ‘is’ is.”  In other words, the meaning of every law depends on the underlying definitions of every word used to comprise that law.

This implies that if you’re charged under a particular law and you can successfully refute the presumed definition of just one of the key words in that law, you may be able to defeat the charges.

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Ron Paul: What’s the Definition of a Dollar?


Free Money Collection in Cash

Image by epSos.de via Flickr

Congressman Paul asks a witness (perhaps from the Treasury Department) to define what, exactly, is a dollar.  It’s funny to see the witness hem, haw and squirm for a few seconds and finally BS his way out of actually defining the “dollar”.   Curiously, Congressman Paul lets him off the hook.  Nevertheless, it appears that government has no current definition for “dollars”.

But definitions are the “law” of the Law.  You cannot know what a “law” means unless you know the definitions of the words used to express that law.  How can anyone know the the meaning of a law that employs a word that is not defined?

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Do Traffic Laws Apply “in this state” But Not within “The State”?


Traffic stop 2

Image by JKleeman via Flickr

Glenn Fearn supplied the attached file.  The highlighting is his.  The file includes excerpts from Texas Traffic laws.

Glenn describes the file as as being useful “to prove that none of their [traffic] statutes apply to living souls.”

His focus is largely on the various definitions of “person” or “party” to show that the traffic laws apply to a number of entities–but that list of entities primarily includes legal fictions and does not including living men and women made in our Father YHWH Elohiym’s image (Genesis 1:26-28) and endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights (“Declaration of Independence”).  Thus, the traffic laws do not appear to apply to “living souls”.

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A Right to Ask Questions About Definitions?


Dictionaries

Image by jovike via Flickr

Title 18 United States Code (USC) Section 6001 (“Definitions”) begins with the phase “As used in this chapter”.  That phrase tells us that the four definitions found at 18 USC 6001 are only certain to apply in this chapter (Chapter 601; “Witness Immunity”) but might not apply in any other Chapters in the USC.

The USC has 50 Titles.  If we assume that each of the other 49 Titles also has 601 “Chapters,” then there may be over 30,000 “chapters” in the entire USC.  In theory, then, there could be 30,000 unique definitions (one or each Chapter in the USC) for each of the four terms defined at 18 USC 6001.

Of course, it’s virtually impossible that any word or phrase used by Congress could have 30,000 separate definitions.  Nevertheless, many word or phrases used by Congress do have multiple definitions.   More, these multiple definitions are often contrived by Congress to have meanings that, for ordinary Americans, are not only unknown and unimagined but are virtually incomprehensible.

This multiplicity of definitions goes to the heart of the following inquiry as to our right to ask to know the definitions of each of the words used in laws, instruments or testimony that are relied upon in our court cases and legal relations.

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Posted by on March 28, 2011 in Definitions, Notice, Questions

 

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