1 : a law enacted by the legislative branch of a government
2 : an act of a corporation or of its founder intended as a permanent rule
3 : an international instrument setting up an agency and regulating its scope or authority
From Webster’s Online
Is United States, the corporation, passing acts intended as permanent rules of the corporation? Are we mistakenly thinking these statutes apply to state Citizens?
The man who manages USA vs. US, mentioned statutes in an interview. He says, “Don’t ever quote the statutes or the US Code. You’re putting yourself under them. I don’t make any claim to statutes. The U.S. Code is non-positive law. It is a different system. There are three ways to enter into a contract: signature, silence (silent assent), or use. And use of their statutory law binds one to their system. Don’t take a privilege or benefit.”
The AT says that statutes are “a legislative rule of a society given the force of law by consent of the governed”.
Society means a group, not everyone. For example, an engineering society is “a professional organization for engineers of various disciplines.” Each man or woman within the society must provide singular consent for it to apply to that singular man or woman. Consent is not by voted on as a group.
Bouvier’s law dictionary also defines ‘statute’.
STATUTE. The written will of the legislature, solemnly expressed according to the forms prescribed in the constitution; an act of the legislature.
2. This word is used in contradistinction to the common law. Statutes acquire their force from the time of their passage unless otherwise provided. 7 Wheat. R. 104: 1 Gall . R. 62.
3. It is a general rule that when the provision of a statute is general, everything which is necessary to make such provision effectual is supplied by the common law; Co. Litt. 235; 2 Inst. 222; Bac. Ab. h. t. B; and when a power is given by statute, everything necessary for making it effectual is given by implication: quando le aliquid concedit, concedere videtur et id pe quod devenitur ad aliud. 12 Co. 130, 131 2 Inst. 306.
4. Statutes are of several kinds; namely, Public or private. 1. Public statutes are those of which the judges will take notice without pleading; as, those which concern all officers in general; acts concerning trade in general or any specific trade; acts concerning all persons generally. 2. Private acts, are those of which the judges wiil not take notice without pleading; such as concern only a particular species, or person; as, acts relating to any particular place, or to several particular places, or to one or several particular counties. Private statutes may be rendered public by being so declared by the legislature. Bac. Ab. h. t. F; 1 Bl. Com. 85. Declaratory or remedial. 1. A declaratory statute is one which is passed in order to put an end to a doubt as to what the common law is, and which declares what it is, and has ever been. 2. Remedial statutes are those which are made to supply such defects, and abridge such superfluities in the common law as may have been discovered. 1 Bl. Com. 86. These remedial statutes are themselves divided into enlarging statutes, by which the common law is made more comprehensive and extended than it was before; and into restraining statutes, by which it is narrowed down to that which is just and proper. The term remedial statute is also applied to those acts which give the party injured a remedy, and in some respects those statutes are penal. Esp. Pen. Act. 1.
6. Temporary or perpetual. 1. A temporary statute is one which is limited in its duration at the time of its enactment. It continues in force until the time of its limitation has expired, unless sooner repealed. 2. A perpetual statute is one for the continuance of which there is no limited time, although it be not expressly declared to be so. If, however, a statute which did not itself contain any limitation, is to be governed by another which is temporary only, the former will also be temporary and dependent upon the existence of the latter. Bac. Ab. h. t. D.
7. Affirmative or negative. 1. An affirmative statute is one which is enacted in affirmative terms; such a statute does not take away the common law. If, for example, a statute without negative words, declares that when certain requisites shall have been complied with, deeds shall, have in evidence a certain effect, this does not prevent their being used in evidence, though the requisites have not been complied with, in the same manner as they might have been before the statute was passed. 2 Cain. R. 169. 2. A negative statute is one expressed in negative terms, and so controls the common law, that it has no force in opposition to the statute. Bro. Parl. pl. 72; Bac. Ab. h. t. G.
8. Penal statutes are those which order or prohibit a thing under a certain penalty. Esp. Pen. Actions, 5 Bac. Ab. h. t. I, 9. Vide, generally, Bac. Ab. h. t.; Com. Dig. Parliament; Vin. Ab. h. t.; Dane’s Ab. Index, h. t.; Chit. Pr. Index, h. t.; 1 Kent, Com. 447-459; Barrington on the Statutes, Boscaw. on Pen. Stat.; Esp. on Penal Actions and Statutes.
9. Among the civilians, the term statute is generally applied to all sorts of laws and regulations; every provision of law which ordains, permits, or prohibits anything is a statute without considering from what source it arises. Sometimes the word is used in contradistinction to the imperial Roman law, which, by way of eminence, civilians call the common law. They divide statutes into three classes, personal, real and mixed.
10. Personal statutes are those which have principally for their object the person, and treat of property only incidentally; such are those which regard birth, legitimacy, freedom, the fight of instituting suits, majority as to age, incapacity to contract, to make a will, to plead in person, and the like. A personal statute is universal in its operation, and in force everywhere.
11. Real statutes are those which have principally for their object, property, and which do not speak of persons, except in relation to property; such are those which concern the disposition, which one may make of his property either alive or by testament. A real statute, unlike a personal one, is confined in its operation to the country of its origin.
12. Mixed statutes are those which concern at once both persons and property. But in this sense almost all statutes are mixed, there being scarcely any law relative to persons, which does not at the same time relate to things. Vide Merl. Repert. mot Statut; Poth. Cout. d’Orleans, ch. 1; 17 Martin’s Rep. 569-589; Story’s Confl. of Laws, §12, et seq.; Bouv. Inst. Index, h. t.
Bouvier’s legal dictionary defines a ‘statute merchant’ as a security for money.
STATUTE MERCHANT, English law. A security entered before the mayor of London, or some chief warden of a city, in pursuance of 13 Ed. 1. stat. 3, c. 1, whereby the lands of the debtor are conveyed to the creditor, till out of the rents and profits of them, his debt may be satisfied. Cruise, Dig. t. 14, s. 7; 2 Bl. Com. 160.
The statute merchants (securities, not businesses) seem to have been common in coastal towns used for exporting goods.
STATUTES STAPLE, English law. The statute of the staple, 27 Ed. HI. stat. 2, confined the sale of all commodities to be exported to certain towns in England, called estaple or staple, where foreigners might resort. It authorized a security for money, commonly called statute staple, to be taken by traders for the benefit of commerce; the mayor of the place is entitled to take a recognizance of a debt, in proper form, which has the effect to convey the lands of the debtor to the creditor, till out of the rents and profits of them he may be satisfied. 2 Bl. Com. 160; Cruise, Dig. tit. 14, s. 10; 2 Rolle’s Ab. 446; Bac. Ab. Execution, B. 1 4 Inst. 238. – Cite: Bouvier’s Law
It may be interesting to read the definition of ‘staple’:
STAPLE, intern. law. The right of staple as exercised by a people upon foreign merchants, is defined to be, that they may not allow them to set their merchandises and wares to sale but in a certain place. Cite: Bouvier’s Law
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