Sunday, 19 August 2007

Will Sachem Brown agree to sell another Island to the Europeans

Does anyone here remember the Wappinger Confederacy or the Manna-hata, a tribe of native Americans who lived on the east coast of what is now the USA who were part of it?

What about Peter Minuit? He was born in Wesel on the German Rhine probably of Huguenot Walloon descent.

Now in 1624 when the Spanish invaded and occupied Wesel. Minuit escaped to Holland. He went to the Dutch West India Company's colony of New Netherland and became Governor.

One of his first actions was to legitimize European occupation of the territory, he called together the native sachems and agreed a purchase of the island that the settlement of New Amsterdam had been built on with trinkets and cloth valued at 60 guilders, then worth about 112 pounds (0.7 kg) of silver.

It has been suggested that the Sachems were not absolutely clear as to exactly what they were agreeing to at that meeting.

As many of you will be aware that Island is now known as Manhattan Island, part of New York City in the USA.

There is a modern day parallel here - with another Island. One off the North West coast of Europe. Known as Britain.

The thing is that most native American Sachems, or chiefs were not royalty, or kings. They were chosen by the community - elected - and there were usually multiple chiefs, both peace chiefs and war chiefs. The Chiefs were effectively elected and only loaned their power by the people of their tribes to be used on their behalf.

Rather like, as a (not quite) random example, British members of Parliament.

They are not Princes in their own right. They do not own the country by right. They are elected.
Any power they hold and wield as an MP is only to be used on behalf of the electorate and is loaned for a limited period of time by the electorate.

It is not transferable; they cannot confer it on any other person, or bodies. If MPs and Prime Ministers want to give away or sell those powers, the citizens powers, on loan, held by them in trust, then they need to go back to the citizen and specifically ask the citizen’s permission. That is known as a referendum.

Yes Sachem Brown that means you and your fellow political class Cronies. You have no right to give, or sell, those powers to Brussels; they are not yours to give.

You promised not to without a referendum, now for once honour your party’s tarnished word.

The Manna-hata should have been more careful of what they were agreeing to - so should we.