I want to examine the assertions made by many that the government is a corporation.
For starters, what is your local government? Is it simply a group of employees of the people operating in the interest of those people?
Glossary words are indicated with an asterisk* and found at the end of this entry.
Let’s look at the statutes again:
Definitions and Statutory Construction.
§ 153A-1. Definitions.
(1) “City” means a city as defined by G.S. 160A-1(2), except that it does not include a city that, without regard to its date of incorporation, would be disqualified from receiving gasoline tax allocations by G.S. 136-41.2(a).
(3) “County” means any one of the counties listed in G.S. 153A-10.
(4) “General law” means an act of the General Assembly that applies to all units of local government, to all counties, to all counties within a class defined by population or other criteria, to all cities, or to all cities within a class defined by population or other criteria, including a law that meets the foregoing”
The definitions of city and county both refer to another section. Very poor construction, if clarity is the goal.
Also, I emphasize that a general law applies to all units of local government (cities/towns, etc.). Never does it say that the general law (an act of the general assembly) applies to the people– the people are not entities with limited rights. Remember, the inhabitants of the county are mere “mini-me”s of the county with the same rights. This clearly spells out the jurisdiction of the General Assembly.
Why not just state what a city is? Okay, I’ll go over to that other section:
Cities and Towns.
Definitions and Statutory Construction.
§ 160A-1. Application and meaning of terms.
(2) “City” means a municipal corporation organized under the laws of this State for the better government of the people within its jurisdiction and having the powers, duties, privileges, and immunities conferred by law on cities, towns, and villages. The term “city” does not include counties or municipal corporations organized for a special purpose. “City” is interchangeable with the terms “town” and “village,” is used throughout this Chapter in preference to those terms, and shall mean any city as defined in this subdivision without regard to the terminology employed in charters, local acts, other portions of the General Statutes, or local customary usage.
(4) “General law” means an act of the General Assembly applying to all units of local government, to all cities, or to all cities within a class defined by population or other criteria, including a law that meets the foregoing standards but contains a clause or section exempting from its effect one or more cities or all cities in one or more counties.
(6) “Mayor” means the chief executive officer of a city by whatever title known.
A mayor is just a CEO? Hmmm… so now we can see that a city is a municipal corporation.
“Municipal corporation. A legal institution formed by charter from sovereign (i.e. state) power erecting* a populous community of prescribed area into a body politic and corporate with corporate name and continuous succession and for the purpose and with the authority of subordinate self-government and improvement and local administration of affairs of state. A body corporate consisting of the inhabitants* of a designated area created by the legislature with or without the consent of such inhabitants for governmental purposes, possessing local legislative and administrative power, also power to exercise within such area so much of the administrative power of the state as may be delegated to it and possessing limited capacity to own and hold property and to act in purveyance of public conveniences.”
By the way– do you like the sound of that– “with or without the consent of… inhabitants”? Does that sound like an inhabitant is someone served by the government, or someone controlled by it? Do you wish to be an inhabitant?
§ 153A-11. Corporate powers.
The inhabitants of each county are a body politic and corporate under the name specified in the act creating the county. Under that name they are vested with all the property and rights of property belonging to the corporation; have perpetual succession; may sue and be sued; may contract and be contracted with; may acquire and hold any property and rights of property, real and personal, that may be devised, sold, or in any manner conveyed, dedicated to, or otherwise acquired by the corporation, and from time to time may hold, invest, sell, or dispose of the property and rights of property; may have a common seal and alter and renew it at will; and have and may exercise in conformity with the laws of this State county powers, rights, duties, functions, privileges, and immunities of every name and nature. “
Are you reading it right?
Essentially, being an inhabitant of the county means you are a PART of that county (legal entity created by the state), with no more rights than the county has. This is important because…
Remember the aforementioned definition of “Municipal corporation”, a phrase describing a city in North Carolina?
“A body corporate consisting of the inhabitants of a designated area created by the legislature with or without the consent of such inhabitants for governmental purposes, possessing local legislative and administrative power, also power to exercise within such area so much of the administrative power of the state as may be delegated to it and possessing limited capacity to own and hold property and to act in purveyance of public conveniences.”
How can you be a part of that body corporate, and not also have your rights limited? It stands to reason that if something can be done with or without your consent, you do not have to be a part of it or subject to it. This is recognized in state and US Constitutions.
How can you ever state that you are from _______ County and not be identifying yourself as an entity with limited rights? You would have to be declaring yourself an inhabitant of that county.
Realize this: when referring to “county”, we are not talking about a geographical area that we think of as a county. We are talking about wordplay, and legal status, and whether your rights are given up for the “privilege” of being part of the body politic and corporate.
In any given situation, you don’t have to claim to be that “inhabitant”.
We wonder why our government favors corporations so heavily… the county or city that claims jurisdiction over you is a creature of the state, of the same ilk as any other corporation in that state.
Essentially, you are considered a citizen of the county or city, without that term being used. If they did use it, you would be a citizen of county, state and federal governments, and might start to experience discomfort from all of those connections/ claims to you.
Why is it bad to be considered a citizen? It doesn’t have to be- but in every definition I can find, citizenship indicates a lowered status, and fewer rights. Those rights are privileges and thus revocable/shifting.
As usual, there are so many layers and branches I could explore. I hope you get something from this, and that I may have helped clarify/bring into focus that mundane thing that is your county or city.
GLOSSARY terms (Black’s Law Dictionary, 5th Edition):
“Erect. In England, one of the formal words of incorporation in royal charters. “We do incorporate, erect, ordain, name, constitute, and establish.” “Construct” is synonymous with “erect”.
Erection. Raising up; building; a completed building; to build; construct; set up. There is a distinction between “erection” and maintenance. Turturro v. Calder, 307 Mass. 159, 29 N.E.2d 744, 746.
Inhabitant. One who resides actually and permanently in a given place, and has his domicile there. Ex parte Shaw, 145 U.S. 444, 12 S.Ct. 935, 36 L.Ed. 768.
The words “inhabitant,” “citizen,” and “resident,” as employed in different constitutions to define the qualifications of electors, means substantially the same thing; and, in general, one is an inhabitant, resident, or citizen at the place where he has his domicile or home. But the terms “resident” and “inhabitant” have also been held not synonymous, the latter implying a more fixed and permanent abode than the former, and importing privileges and duties to which a mere resident would not be subject. A corporation can be an inhabitant only in the state of its incorporation.
(If you have been made subject to duties, that is a contractual connection. No law can require to take any action if you have not committed a crime.–Ed.)