The last three years have seen our Swiss politicians make historically catastrophic decisions with regard to our sovereignty and independence. They have all but given up our rights and transformed our nation into a fiefdom of the great powers, notably the United States and the European Union. They have allowed the United States to dictate law to us, and to mandate that this law should be retroactive, something that would be impossible in the United States itself, the American constitution specifically prohibiting retroactive law.
The United States declared a de facto war on Switzerland, and our politicians cowered and ran, hoping they could hide in some small corner. That is never possible in wars with great powers or with empires. The only safety is in courage: the courage to affirm one’s independence, to claim one’s legitimate rights, and to stand behind one’s own long tradition of law and sovereignty. What do we suppose the reaction of the United States would have been to a diktat from Switzerland requiring the U.S. to change its laws to conform to our understanding of individual rights and liberty? If such a demand were noticed at all, it would be to laugh at us.
Would we have a good case to demand that the United States change its laws? Yes! The condition that the United States imposes upon its citizens and residents—that they essentially belong to the American state for the duration of their natural lives, and owe tribute (taxes) to it wherever in the world they may live, wherever they may earn their livings, forever—is a form of modern day serfdom. Benjamin Franklin justly declared: where there is liberty, there is my country. That liberty no longer exists in the United States, in violation of almost all other countries’ understanding of human rights. But, empires do not mind about human rights; they never have. Is not our Swiss view, that a citizen who lives in Switzerland pays his taxes in Switzerland, but who lives abroad pays his taxes abroad, the just view? Of course it is utterly unrealistic to imagine that any empire would even hear our view. But, did we have to sell out our liberty and our principles to please that empire? Did we have to betray our own citizens to that empire?
Our politicians acted, they say, to save a bank, a terribly and dishonestly managed private enterprise. Why? How did the existence of this bank come to be so important to us that we were willing to give up seven hundred years of sovereignty for it? There were many solutions to the matter; our government made, at each step, the worst of all possible choices. They never understood that when dealing with empires, history teaches a clear lesson: when you once say yes, you will say yes for everything, forever. Our naïve politicians thought they could buy peace with some small appeasement. That is like thinking that the first one hundred francs one pays the Mafia will be the only payment. How ill served we have been by these incompetent politicians! They have sold us for a few pieces of gold!
Now, we are no longer sovereign, we are no longer independent, and our individual rights and liberties as citizens of Switzerland have been fundamentally altered. We can blame the United States, we can blame the European Union, but first we must blame our own political class: inept, uncomprehending, confused and cowardly. There is only one redress left, and it is—fortunately—our traditional redress in times of trouble: the people themselves. We must act. We must change the awful path our politicians have put us upon; we must cancel agreements that have broken our sovereignty and robbed us of our independence; we must compensate our own citizens whom we have betrayed; we must declare to all that we are a lawful and sovereign nation, keeping our own laws far more faithfully than most countries do theirs; and that our Swiss nation is built upon an unbroken bedrock of sacred individual rights.
The time to act is now.