“The DOJ’S Position is That

WE [GIBSON] SHOULD just shut down and go away as a company.” — Gibson Guitar CEO Henry Juszkiewicz appearing with Big Journalism’s Dana Loesch.

As Tam alluded (and I quoted her) businesses persecuted by overweening government have long considered it less costly to just “…grab the fish and say “Duh, okay,” and trudge off into the forest to try and comply.” than to fight the government — even though the government is clearly in the wrong, and the government agents are operating in violation of both constitutional and statute law.

But, what to do if the downside risk is not a hit to the stock price, but the very existence of the enterprise?

Fight back. And do not seek merely to prove your case, thus bringing the government to a standstill, leaving it fit to continue its depredations again tomorrow. No. Fight fire with fire. If the government threatens your existence, then challenge not only the legitimacy of the government’s actions, but of the government agency itself. Start with the law in question, but do not scruple to go to the source — to the actual Constitution.

In the case at hand, the Federal government has no brief to enforce the laws of a foreign nation. In fact, one must argue that, far from being permitted to, it is forbidden from it.

Nor does the Federal government have the lawful authority to dictate the use or non-use of natural resources. Period. End of discussion. These actions, therefor, are first an infringement on liberty, and second clear violations of the government’s charter. The organization bringing the suit should face the same jeopardy its prospective victim faces — termination.

Gibson does not have the resources to fight the entire Federal government. But the company need not fight alone. If Apple Electronics has more cash on hand than the U.S. Treasury, how hard would it be for American business — united in defense of their very rice bowls — to overwhelm the office budget of one Federal prosecutor, one FBI Special Agent in Charge, one cabinet under-secretary?

Back in about 2007 or 2008, I posited a similar question to some fellow bloggers at an Indy blogmoot. We were talking about gun rights. And it has since been demonstrated clearly that, with the right strategy and tactics, it is possible to overwhelm the government in court. The principle applies here, too.

As a free people, we owe it to our business leaders to, as best we can, to encourage them and support them in this effort. For, if they do not hang together, they surely will hang separately — as the persecution of Gibson Guitar so clearly demonstrates.

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