“Postitive” law for all? “Non-positive” law only for Territories?

10 Sep

[courtesy Google Images]

[courtesy Google Images]

It’s my understanding that about half of the “Titles” in the United States Code (USC) are each described as “positive” law.  About half of those Titles are not identified as “positive” law, but, so far as I know, they are not given a distinctive description although it’s usually called “non-positive” law..

Perhaps it would be fair to say that the titles of the USC can be expressly described as either “law” or “positive law”.   If that were true, then, whenever some officer, official or employee of what passes for federal government said “It’s the LAW!,” they might actually mean that whatever authority they’re referring to in the USC was something other thanpositive law”.   If that were true, then what would the government’s reaction be to claims where people said “It’s the positive law”?

It’s also my understanding that Title 26 (which deals with income taxes) of the USC is not identified as “positive law”.

I can’t prove it, but it’s my strong suspicion and belief that the income tax is only mandatory within territories and administrative districts “of the United States”  but not within the States of the Union (“of The United States of America”).

Is it possible that all laws under the USC which are “positive” are mandatory only within all States of the Union while those laws under the USC that are “non-positive” are mandatory only within the territories?

It’s pure conjecture, but could it be that the primary difference between the “law”/ “non-positive law” and “positive law” of the USC ultimately a matter of venue?

If that conjecture were valid, it might follow that the income tax laws are only “constitutional” and “mandatory” within the territories, but are something like “private,” “consensual” and/or “voluntary” within the States of the Union.



Posted by on September 10, 2014 in "The State" vs. "this state", IRS, Venue


Tags: ,

38 responses to ““Postitive” law for all? “Non-positive” law only for Territories?

  1. Toland

    September 10, 2014 at 7:03 PM

    Because we’re all into dictionaries here:

    Positive law. Law actually and specifically enacted or adopted by proper authority for the government of an organized jural society.

    — Black’s Law Dictionary, 6th Edition

  2. Geronimo

    September 10, 2014 at 7:15 PM

    You are right about the income tax. Check out A great read.


    September 10, 2014 at 7:24 PM

    Hi, I was just reading about “Positive Law” yesterday. You mIght find this interesting. Cheryl Carter

    • Lawernce Kenemore Jr

      September 11, 2014 at 7:02 AM

      Cheryl good job maybe some of those naysayers will read and understand the law instead of this boogeyman law they espouse

  4. Henry

    September 10, 2014 at 7:24 PM

    Toland cites a useful source.

    I read Black’s definition of positive law as intentionally drawing a contrast with constructive law. This in turn suggests that operations of constructive law are what move you away from the Constitution of our “jural society” and into the Wild West of the territories.

  5. Gary Lee

    September 10, 2014 at 7:33 PM

    US Code, as well as the UCC and all the State CCs, clearly identifiy the “United States” as being a corporation located in the Disastric of Columbia, (incorporated in 1871) which is the only place ANY of the US Code has any authority, aside form the territories. The US Code clearly identifies it’s territorial jurisdiction in a number of places in the code, as well as the Supreme Court making clear that all legislation of Congress is territorial in nature:

    the U.S. Supreme Court:
    “All legislation is prima-facie territorial”
    American Banana Co. v. U.S. Fruit, 213 U.S. 347 at 357-358

    “It is a well-established principle of law that all federal regulations applies only within the territorial jurisdiction of the United States unless a contrary intent appears”
    [Foley Brothers, Inc. v. Filardo, 336 U.S. 281 (1949)]

    “The laws of Congress in respect to those matters[outside of Constitutionally delegated powers] do not extend into the territorial limits of the states, but have force only in the District of Columbia, and other places that are within the exclusive jurisdiction of the national government”
    [Caha v. U.S. 152 U.S. 211 (1894)

    “There is a canon of legislative construction which teaches Congress that, unless a contrary intent appears, [legislation] is meant to apply only within the territorial jurisdiction of the United States.”
    U.S. v. Spelar, 338 U.S. 217 at 222

    SECTION 9301- 9342

    9307. (h) The United States is located in the District of Columbia.

    UNITED STATES CODE, TITLE 28, PART VI, CHAPTER 176, SUB CHAPTER A, Sec. 3002. Definitions (15)(A), p. 564 ”United States” means –
    (A) a Federal corporation;
    (B) an agency, department, commission, board, or other entity of the United States; or
    (C) an instrumentality of the United States

    26 U.S.C. Sec. 7701(a)(10): State
    The term ”State” shall be construed to include the District of Columbia, where such construction is necessary to carry out provisions of this title.

    If you are not a “US person”, US citizen” or “US resident”, US Code does not apply to you, as it only applies in places under the exclusive control or jurisdiction of ‘Congress’ or the federal GovCo.

  6. Lawernce Kenemore Jr

    September 10, 2014 at 7:55 PM

    If you are going to talk about positive law I guess you need to know the definition
    Legal rules enacted by people in a political community. Positive law includes constitutions, statutes, and regulations.

  7. Lawernce Kenemore Jr

    September 10, 2014 at 7:58 PM

    Title 28 definitions only apply to that section not ALL OF LAW
    Title 26 definition of State only applies to thAT SECTION OF THE LAW NOT all of law

    • Gary Lee

      September 11, 2014 at 9:08 PM

      the definitions for “US citizen”, “US resident”, “US person” and “State” are uniform throughout the UCC and USC, regardless of title, as are the same definitions in all State (federal areas, i.e. ‘CA’, ‘TX’, ‘NY’, etc) Commercial Codes, as those are the only “persons” (“commercial entities”) to whom the codes can apply.

  8. Californian

    September 10, 2014 at 7:59 PM

    I guess its all in what you believe in. The government needs our consent no matter what and in all cases. Unless we hurt someone. You know, don’t you know right from wrong young man. If you do wrong, they don’t need your consent.
    I am a building contractor. My clients believe they need permits to build a house. They believe the codes apply to them. That the code will protect them. They no longer seem to care about references as long as I am licensed and obtain a permit. They rarely call my references.
    No one in California is required to beg for a permit. Anyone who constructs, “shall” obtain a required permit. Pretty much, there you have it. Shall is future tense and merely permissive a vague at best.
    Pretty much, everyone believes in permits, so I make a living provide a service for which they don’t really need permission.
    If you believe in a code, it applies. I read a few codes. Mostly they refer to persons who shall do something. I am a man, not a person. But even persons seem to require consent. Of course no one taught me how to be a man.
    I have a big mess on my hands undoing all the damage I did to myself.

    • Adask

      September 10, 2014 at 8:47 PM

      You are way ahead of a lot people insofar as you realize that YOU are responsible for “all the damage [you] did to [yourself].” Most people want to blame there problems exclusively on the deceit and/or treason of others–and there’s now doubt that those “others” ARE responsible for much of our problems. But the primary cause for most of our individual problems is our individual ignorance. It’s not unusual for others to cultivate and exploit our ignorance, but the problem begins with our ignorance. It won’t end until we start spending more time reading books on the law, dictionaries, and the Bible than we spend watching TV dramas, movies, sports and gossip. If you would be free you must be more interested in being educated than entertained. By taking personal responsibilty for your “mess,” you’ve taken a first big step to reducing the resulting damage–or at least in preventing yourself from creating another “mess” at some point in the future.

      • Californian

        September 10, 2014 at 9:02 PM

        Thank you for the kind words Adask, I feel very alone these days. I try to share with others and mostly I am refuted. My best friend even said, I don’t care if your right. I like it the way it is. Sigh…

      • moon

        September 10, 2014 at 9:14 PM


        This can be a lonely venture, at times. Keep in mind, though, that at any time your friend might come back and say, “you know. that one thing you said turned me around and I don’t like it the way it is anymore”. Think of the possibilities!.

      • constitutionalist

        September 11, 2014 at 2:46 AM


        On the preface page of every volume of the United States Code, there appears a list of all 50 titles thereof and some of these titles are, by means of an asterisk, designated as “positive law.” Based solely upon this evidence, erroneous and palpably false arguments have been made that the titles which are not “positive law” are not law at all. The purpose of this memo is to explain and refute such erroneous contentions and to prove the real nature of the titles which are not “positive law.”
        Pursuant to the U.S. Constitution, Congress possesses certain defined but limited powers, and to execute these powers, it has the authority to enact laws. The first Congress under the Constitution convened in New York City on March 4, 1789, and continued to sit until September 29, 1789; during that time, Congress adopted 27 separate acts. The first such act was approved on June 1, 1789, and concerned the oath of office to be administered to public servants. Subsequent to that first Congress, there have been many other Congresses which have similarly adopted acts pursuant to Congressional powers. All acts of Congress are published in a serially numbered set of books named the United States Statutes at Large. These books contains the “laws” of the United States.

    • Lyndon

      September 11, 2014 at 7:06 AM

      Tip: YOU are in codes when YOU works under permit; YOU become agent of whatever contracted with the municipality.

    • Lyndon

      September 11, 2014 at 7:21 AM

      Tip: YOU are in codes when YOU works under permit; YOU become agent of whatever contracted with the municipality. This post applies to “Californian’s post.

  9. palani

    September 10, 2014 at 8:52 PM

    Courtesy of Blackstone: if an uninhabited country be discovered and planted by English subjects, all the English laws are immediately there in force. For as the law is the birthright of every subject, so wherever they go they carry their laws with them. But in conquered or ceded countries, that have already laws of their own, the king may indeed alter and change those laws ; but, till he does actually change them, the antient laws of the country remain, unless such as are against the law of God, as in the casé of an infidel country.

    So you see laws attach to bodies no matter where they go and not to land or territory. In the case of the United States the laws of the United States attach to United States citizens as described by the 14th amendment. Wherever these citizens go their laws go with them, whether that be in one of the several States or Russia.

  10. Damon

    September 11, 2014 at 12:15 AM

    Reblogged this on Awakestate.

  11. Pat Fields

    September 11, 2014 at 2:56 AM

    The only Law is … Do No Harm to Man or his Property.

    All else, however characterized, is derivative statute , code and ordinance instructing government’s agents and officers on details of enforcing that elemental Law. Those instructions are ‘law’, only in regard to those operatives and anyone … assuming … their duties to themselves.

  12. Lyndon

    September 11, 2014 at 7:18 AM

    Positive “law” basically means written law that applies because someone out there accepts it. And, even between two man, a one-sentence written contract is “positive law”. There is unwritten Law we all accept -like we all accept a man has right to face his accuser- but it is not written and our consent to it is not required for it to be effective.

  13. Anthony Clifton

    September 11, 2014 at 11:44 AM

    well the first commandment says specifically which law not to violate…

    Jesus said that “They make His Fathers Law of no effect”…and was not speaking Yiddish
    to Ashkenazim “Proselytes” from Khazaria…but to OBVIOUSLY “Edomoites” posing
    allegedly as Pharisees & Money Changers…not just moral cretins but actual Genetic
    specific “Children of the Devil”…!

    [audio src="" /]

    Elijah had a memorable day in this dept one day…and the baal priests were dispatched
    to utter perdition at the brook of Kishon

    a “pure” language….Zephaniah 3:9

  14. timmy

    September 11, 2014 at 7:54 PM

    I personally went to a law library and examined the federal (“US”) code books. There is a clear– and they do mark it as such– distinction between ‘law’, positive law, codes and statutes. They all appear to be different in nature and effect. I’m not sure of all those distinctions on a practical level.

    And yes, Title 26 is specifically indicated in a way to convey that congress never passed it into positive law. ( I can’t remember the specifics- this was years ago. But you can go look…)

    It’s all right there…

    • Lawernce Kenemore Jr

      September 11, 2014 at 8:03 PM

      All law passed by Congress is positive law look at the Statutes

      • palani

        September 15, 2014 at 8:17 AM

        Yes. That is the point. Codes do not contain the magic words “Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in congress assembled.” Those who read code must therefore discover these words associated with the ‘law’ they are attempting to validate. Just because words appear in code (speak) does not make them valid. The job becomes impossible when there is no act associated with the code section being validated.

      • Lawernce Kenemore Jr

        September 15, 2014 at 9:08 AM

        Are you talking about Codes or Laws there is a difference?

      • palani

        September 15, 2014 at 1:29 PM

        After you pass the hurdle of misidentifying codes as laws then you might take a glance at whose laws they are and whether they apply to you. I can tell you, when there is a conflict of laws, my laws always win, but when reason is the basis for all law then my law is never in conflict with anyone elses anyway because to consider otherwise is unreasonable.

      • moon

        September 16, 2014 at 3:28 PM

        Thanks, palani, for saying that. As i’ve been considering the definition of court of record in Black’s Law 4th, what you said has helped some things click into place for me. Thanks.

      • Gary Lee

        September 20, 2014 at 10:21 PM

        From the U.S. Supreme Court:
        “All legislation is prima-facie territorial”
        American Banana Co. v. U.S. Fruit, 213 U.S. 347 at 357-358

        “It is a well-established principle of law that all federal regulations applies only within the territorial jurisdiction of the United States unless a contrary intent appears”
        [Foley Brothers, Inc. v. Filardo, 336 U.S. 281 (1949)]

        “The laws of Congress in respect to those matters[outside of Constitutionally delegated powers] do not extend into the territorial limits of the states, but have force only in the District of Columbia, and other places that are within the exclusive jurisdiction of the national government”
        [Caha v. U.S. 152 U.S. 211 (1894)

        “There is a canon of legislative construction which teaches Congress that, unless a contrary intent appears, [legislation] is meant to apply only within the territorial jurisdiction of the United States.”
        U.S. v. Spelar, 338 U.S. 217 at 222

  15. Max

    September 16, 2014 at 1:57 PM

    I thought positive law was enacted by congress for all the free (not sovereign) people (state citizens), and the positive law plus the titles “that have not yet been enacted into positive law”, i.e. private law, were for all US citizens, i.e. anyone presumed to use a SSN. Neither positive nor private law applies to the sovereign people, only positive law applies to expatriots of the US (stopped using the SSN), and both positive and private law applies to US citizens.

  16. WC

    September 20, 2014 at 12:33 AM

    Is it possible the ‘positive law’ we seek is in the ‘Statutues at Large’ ? An excellent researcher by the name of Dan Benham has discussed the fact that the U.S. Code is the result of various groups of lawyers basically lending their ‘interpretation’ of the Statutes. One can only wonder how much massaging of Congress’s intent they’re responsible for & how much it’s benefitted their industry.

    According to Mr. Benham ( has appeared on Angela’s – My Private Audio / TALKSHOE ) whenever there’s a conflict between the two, the St. at Large always take precedence……..which I find interesting.

    • Lawernce Kenemore Jr

      September 20, 2014 at 10:57 AM

      Never ceases to amaze me that the talk and I mean talk is all it is about the law….you need to study law to understand it…that is how laws come about how they are passed and how they are interpreted by agencies and then the courts…otherwise you are just blowing words into the wind…

      • Pat Fields

        September 22, 2014 at 10:23 AM

        The ‘law’ comes down to a question of whose ‘law’? Statutes, codes, rules and regulations are for members of a social group and no others. Not a whole lot of study required there … just a matter of facing facts and making serious choices. If one is a man or woman among The People, then the applicable Law is theirs to decree through their Juries.

        “A citizen of the United States is a citizen of the federal government …” (Kitchens v. Steele 112 F.Supp 383)

      • Lawernce Kenemore Jr

        September 22, 2014 at 3:06 PM

        You need to contact all those right wing patriots that are in Federal Prison that made that argument and as the judge said I must have jurisdiction or you would not be here or the Courts would turn you loose…old tired argument that has incarcerated a lot of people for what?

      • Wayne

        September 22, 2014 at 12:10 PM

        And it never ceases to amaze me how much arrogance is exhibited by some folks in this legal reform movement who are so full of themselves they don’t understand the importance of brainstorming certain ideas……I’m pretty sure most of the significant recent revelations in LR did not come via a bolt of lightning or sleeping with a Black’s Law under the pillow.

  17. Lawernce Kenemore Jr

    September 22, 2014 at 3:09 PM

    obviously you have never been to trial or understand the rules when it comes to trials…you can decree to juries all you want does not mean it is law or rule…only one mans opinion…and 112 F.Supp 383 is a District Court case that only applies in that District Court….

  18. Terry Reeves

    April 1, 2017 at 5:54 PM

    You need to understand about titles that are not positive law. That does NOT mean they are not enacted law. It just means that the title is an editorial compilation of laws rather than a single enacted statute as are the titles which are positive law. Here’s a quote from. “A positive law title of the Code is itself a Federal statute. A non-positive law title of the Code is an editorial compilation of Federal statutes. For example, Title 10, Armed Forces, is a positive law title because the title itself has been enacted by Congress. For the enacting provision of Title 10, see first section of the Act of August 10, 1956, ch. 1041 (70A Stat. 1). By contrast, Title 42, The Public Health and Welfare, is a non-positive law title. Title 42 is comprised of many individually enacted Federal statutes––such as the Public Health Service Act and the Social Security Act––that have been editorially compiled and organized into the title, but the title itself has not been enacted.”

    • Adask

      April 1, 2017 at 6:12 PM


    • kenneth johnson

      April 5, 2017 at 1:15 AM

      Hello Terry. Have you noticed, which I am sure you have, seems the codes like to use the term person and shall. And most codes will read, not say as paper has no vocal cords, shall means mandatory. Since shall is future tense, sure I agree shall is mandatory, sometime in the future.
      To my question. In all your research, have you found any orders. I.E. By the power vested in me by Almighty God, people are hereby ordered to stop at all posted stop signs. Or perhaps all people within the boundaries of this State of … are required and ordered to do anything. have you found anything that sounded like anything more than some bulls…t. all persons shall stop, or all persons shall register.
      My client is being molested by code enforcement. I said go ask Rod at code enforcement and ask Rod, Rod can you show me the wet ink signed public law that requires me to get a permit? His reply, there is no public law, it’s a code we get from the state.
      I have not found one single order. No man has ever stepped one foot on my door to order me to do anything. Slavery is forbidden. Perhaps that is why I can’t find my orders. I am ready to send in my bill.
      I know a guy who gets paid cash and does not receive a 1099 or W2. He never gets a letter from the IRS ordering him to pay up. He has a bank account. Everyone I know who signs a W9 or W4, gets a friendly reminder to pay up.
      Law is contract. Contract is the law.


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