Under the Constitution for the United States of America, that self-governing society can be thought of as a Federated Constitutional Republic.
For a society to govern itself, the individuals in that society must possess a degree of competence.
Assuming individuals possess the competence needed to govern themselves, Individual Freedom and Native Justice are the source of that competence.
Protecting Natural Rights to an adequate practical degree is a goal toward which the energies of self-governance may be directed.
This source of competence in combination with a suitable aim is the foundation of that self-governing society.
I consider these things important because they each attach directly to people, individuals, us.
We the People are real. In fact, people are the only truly real part of that federated constitutional republic.
The body of the federated constitutional republic that I mentioned earlier that is closest to you is generally your voting precinct.
Depending on the population that precinct may be part of a ward or some other intermediate size body between the precinct and other larger local seats of power.
Those other larger seats of power are likely the municipal body or the county or parish body.
All the aforementioned bodies, the precinct, the ward, the municipality, and the county or parish bodies are each bodies of the federated constitutional republic created by the Constitution for the United States of America in 1791.
Two other significant bodies of the federated constitutional republic are:
This idea is supported somewhat by the 10th amendment, the full faith and credit clause, and the enclave clause of Article I Section 8 clause 17.
After all, if the central body of the federated constitutional republic can exercise exclusive jurisdiction in its reserved (by legislation) territories and areas of delegated authorities, then what of the 50 State bodies of the federated constitutional republic?
It's true that the full faith and credit language explicitly obligates States to other States. That language does not seem to obligate the central body of the federated constitutional republic in any similar way. As such, this language does not appear to provide much (if any) protection for the sovereignty of the 50 State bodies of the federated constitutional republic against intrusions upon their sovereignty growing out of the authority of the central body of the federated constitutional republic.
However, the guarantee of a republican form of government does offer some protection.
You do not have to dwell upon the definition of republic very long to see this is true.
The upshot of all this is that if any body of the federated constitutional republic is adequately meeting its obligations, it can expect no interference from any other body of the federated constitutional republic, including the central body thereof.
This includes the individual human bodies thereof.
That's enough on this point for now.
The people are the foundation of the republic.
Without the abilities and qualities described here using the terms native justice, natural rights, and individual freedom, a republic is not possible.
The fact that these abilities and qualities are aspects of human nature is what makes this all a foundation.
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