10 December 2010
I believe when the District of Columbia was established, it was never intended to have "residents". The whole idea of a "citizen Congress" is for a person to be elected, serve a term, then go back to work in his or her regular business. Where that went wrong is a subject for another post (or 12), though.
With the money it takes to get elected these days, the winner could easily buy a netbook computer and headset to participate in Congressional proceedings from home. I would even be pleased to see States to set up one or several meeting places for their elected Federal representatives to use for the purpose. At the very least, the lobbyists' resources would be spread much thinner.
Just think of it: when you want to call your Representative or Senator, you can dial a local number, and maybe even get a chance to speak to the officeholder! Also, people who aren't near a TV with C-SPAN could watch proceedings on their office computers, by Congress providing a public URL for read-only access.
The more I think about this, the more advantages I can see. I'd better stop now so I can post this. Let me know what you think!
07 December 2010
NBC's Mitchell to Republican: How Do You Justify a Tax Freedom for Those Who Don't Need It?
"I'm glad you used that phrase, Andrea. You've admitted that taxing is equivalent to enslaving. Freedom is always justified. Any more questions?"
01 December 2010
Encapsulate the year 2010 in one word. Explain why you chose that word. Now, imagine it's one year from today. What would you like the word to be that captures 2011 for you?
(Author: Gwen Bell)
2010 was the year that Americans started to reclaim the policy direction of our cities, counties, states, and nation from the Marxists, statists, and collectivists. The various tea party activists and their fans nationwide made huge strides toward this end, and had huge effects on elections all over the country. Constitutionalists are even affecting the Republican Party leadership races that are now underway.
My hope is that with the Republican majority in the House of Representatives, we can begin to restore some semblance of government of the people, by the people, for the people, rather than of the nation, by the ruling class, for the groups that got them elected. I don't expect everything to be done in a year--especially with the collectivists still in control of the Senate and the White House--but I'd like to see the repeal of some of the more heinous legislation of the past two years, and some talk about ending or privatizing social programs like SCHIP, Federal food stamps, Medicare Part D, Part C, and Part B, and Social Security.
I'll even go one word and one year farther, and give my hope for 2012: Rededication. I believe we need to rededicate our nation, by way of ourselves, to pursuing God, by pursuing the life he wants us to live. The founders recognized that a Republic such as is described by the Constitution cannot be maintained if its citizens have no moral compass. We must realize that we need not be compelled to do what the collective society demands, if we are by nature--or supernature--inclined to do what individual relationships require to succeed. Let us begin in 2011 to learn how to be our best to each other, so we may dedicate ourselves to the pursuit in 2012.
29 September 2010
Please read this very good post by Michael Tanner. I have a few comments:
- In this post, "Democrats" = "Totalitarian Statists". They likely exist in every party, and certainly outside of any organized party.
- Of course they want the courts to decide if any given piece of legislation should be enforced. They've packed most of the courts with Statists.
- Rather than the phrase "federal government", we should call it what it is: the State Bureaucratic Apparatus (SBA). Government is instituted to protect individuals so they may be free to produce and enjoy their value. The SBA's purpose is to control people and steal their production, so that people who choose to produce nothing of value can enjoy some of it. Of course, the redistributors--the "brokers" if you will--take their cut and enjoy much more than the average subject.
- We have more to show for the SBA's growth than debt. We also have a culture of dependence. The American Declaration of Independence was written by revolutionaries 234 years ago. The American Foundation of Dependence was laid about 100 years ago, by "Progressive" evolutionaries.
- I think Mr. Tanner is confusing Conservatives with Fascists. (More likely, he is using the term in the way he does in his book.) He alludes to a conservative's "idea of a good federal program." I can't think of one "program" that the SBA should run. If national defense is a program, then maybe that is a proper federal government role. I'm actually in favor of each state being able to defend itself, and the federal role being simply that of coordination. I am certainly not in favor of any government--federal, state, county, municipal, or home-owner's association--being empowered to enforce morality.
24 September 2010
At the very least, don't be like some here in Nevada who just can't stand Sharron Angle and see Harry Reid as their only alternative. Vote for a libertarian if you must, or an "Independent". Please, please, don't vote (D) just because the others don't have a chance of winning!
22 June 2010
08 June 2010
- The only reliable basis for sound government and just human relations is Natural Law.
- A free people cannot survive under a republican constitution unless they remain virtuous and morally strong.
- The most promising method of securing a virtuous and morally stable people is to elect virtuous leaders.
- Without religion, the government of a free people cannot be maintained.
- All things were created by God, therefore upon Him all mankind are equally dependent, and to Him they are equally responsible.
- All men are created equal. [My emphasis.]
- The proper role of government is to protect equal rights, not [to] provide equal things.
- Men are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights.
- To protect man's rights, God has revealed certain principles of Divine law.
- The God-given right to govern is vested in the sovereign authority of the whole people.
- The majority of the people may alter or abolish a government which has become tyrannical.
- The United States of America shall be a republic. [Not a democracy.]
- A constitution should be structured to permanently protect the people from the human frailties of their rulers [I prefer "leaders"].
- Life and liberty are secure only so long as the right of property is secure.
- The highest level of prosperity occurs when there is a free market economy and a minimum of government regulations.
- The government should be separated into three branches: legislative, executive, and judicial.
- A system of checks and balances should be adopted to prevent the abuse of power.
- The unalienable rights of the people are most likely to be preserved if the principles of government are set forth in a written constitution. [And that constitution is followed!]
- Only limited and carefully defined powers should be delegated to government, all others being retained in the people.
- Efficiency and dispatch require government to operate according to the will of the majority, but constitutional provisions must be made to protect the rights of the minority.
- Strong local self-government is the keystone to preserving human freedom.
- A free people should be governed by law and not by the whims of men.
- A free society cannot survive as a republic without a broad program of general education.
- A free people will not survive unless they stay strong.
- "Peace, commerce, and honest friendship with all nations; entangling alliances with none."
- The core unit which determines the strength of any society is the family; therefore, the government should foster and protect its integrity.
- The burden of debt is as destructive to freedom as subjugation by conquest.
- The United States has a manifest destiny to be an example and a blessing to the entire human race.
28 May 2010
No, this was an offer from the utility company to participate in the "Cool Share" program. Just for signing up, we would be supplied with a "web-programmable thermostat"! These thermostats "can cut your cooling and heating costs by as much as 10% annually", according to estimates from the U.S. Department of Energy. And they allow me--and who knows how many bureaucrats--to manage my home's energy use. Remotely. From the internet. Regardless of how I've set it.
Now, they are careful to point out--on the reverse side--that these thermostats "do NOT allow [the utility company] to 'control' your home temperature". They say nothing about other organizations, such as the Department of Energy.
Of course, one of the bullet point advantages of these thermostats is that they "help…Reduce greenhouse gas emissions".
In a sidebar on that side, there is an explanation that in the Cool Share program, when it is very hot (104°F and above), the air conditioning unit will be placed in "conservation mode" for generally no more than three hours. They claim that this would typically happen only on weekdays, not weekends or holidays, except in case of…wait for it…"emergency."
As an additional enticement, participants can get $1.00 for each of these "conservation period[s]", up to a maximum of $29.
UPDATE 2010/06/12 I received a card in the mail explaining that this program is available only in Southern Nevada. That explains the references to 104° temperatures.
24 May 2010
Be aware that this software runs on Adobe AIR. I understand there is an AIR environment available for Windows, Mac, and Linux, so you should be covered.
While the software itself is free of monetary charge, you will be asked for your email address twice: first by New Media International (they won't bug you much--just let you know when new products or websites are launching); then by the publisher of the software. I think it's worth it.
UPDATE 2010/06/23: I've been told the publisher of the free TweetBrand software has stopped supporting it. If you follow the steps, you may or may not be able to download and install it, but there will be no upgrades.
13 May 2010
Update: as Mr. Broussard puts it: Basically, the Left, "We'll take care of everything." The Right, "We'd like to protect you."
12 May 2010
If you're age 40 to 55, you have an option:
- pay 67% of current SS&M taxes and receive 50% benefits, or
- pay no more SS&M taxes, get a one-time refundable tax credit of 50% of those paid so far, and receive no benefits
The percentages can be tweaked, but these seem pretty fair to me, and we all know that, even now, the benefits payable under these programs bear no relationship to the revenues collected as payroll taxes.
22 April 2010
Collectivists live by projection.
If they are violent, they accuse Constitutionalists of violence. If they are racist, they accuse me of racism. If they want to shut down free speech, they accuse me of wanting to shut them up. (I want them to say exactly what they believe.)
If they are blindly following some Marxist leader, like George Soros, John Podesta, or Andy Stern, they accuse me of having no intelligence of my own and blindly following someone like Bill O'Reilly, Glenn Beck, or Rush Limbaugh. On the contrary: O'Reilly is not conservative enough for me; Rush and Glenn simply echo my beliefs. Sometimes, even they do not go far enough. (See my post with my "precinct card.")
I believe in the Constitution, and I will oppose you even if I don't hear one national voice with my viewpoint! In fact, if the current few voices are silenced, you will hear the voice of MILLIONS against you!
As I write this, Rush Limbaugh is finishing up his coverage of the story of a woman with cancer who was on Medicaid, scheduled for a transplant. The Social Security Administration contacted her, offering disability benefits for her 3-year-old son. She accepted, and the disability payments caused her to be ineligible for Medicaid. They've canceled her coverage, and the hospital will not do the transplant because of liability issues.
Earlier this morning Fox News featured a short bit about effective tax rates going up in 2011, including a mention of the Death Tax phase-out (so that the estate tax rate is 0 this year) expiring at the end of the year. Estates of decedents who die in 2011 could face a tax rate of 55%--that is, the State Bureaucratic Apparatus will take OVER HALF of what someone has EARNED during his or her LIFETIME. That is on top of whatever taxes were paid on that money when it was earned.
All this reminds me of Alan Grayson's placard presentation, claiming the Republicans want you to die quickly. It's obvious that it is in fact the COLLECTIVISTS who want that. In effect they're saying, if you're going to die in the next couple of years, and you want to preserve your estate, you had better die in 2010--in a word, quickly. If you have a chance to get a transplant to extend your life a bit, but you're going to be on public assistance for the rest of your life, anyway, we'd rather you don't get the transplant, and die quickly.
When a collectivist accuses a conservative of something odious and despicable, it's nearly always projection.
08 April 2010
That got me thinking. We know Harry Reid is in trouble, and may lose to a Republican challenger. But which one? I personally like Sharron Angle. I've heard noises of some opinions that she is "too conservative." (I say that's impossible.) Right now, Sue Lowden is the front-runner, and the young Danny Tarkanian seems very popular, too.
I don't know right now if Nevada has a Gubernatorial Appointment process or a Special Election process for replacing a U. S. Senator mid-term. I will do some research to see if I can determine what the process is. But in any case, I think it would be beneficial for Nevada to have one Senator from each of two major regions: North and South. According to Sen. Ensign's website, he was raised in the North up until high school, but now considers Las Vegas his home.
Even if Lowden or Tarkanian wins the Republican primary, I will fully support the GOP effort to defeat Harry Reid in November. I would then also love to see Angle chosen to replace Ensign should he resign. I have no problem with Ensign in the Senate. He seems to be conservative enough. But should he be pressured to resign, I believe Sharron Angle would be an outstanding choice to take his place.
31 March 2010
26 March 2010
Hunger is defined as, "The physical and mental condition that results from not eating enough food, due to insufficient economic, social, and community resources.["]
Now remember that the collectivists' chief aim is to guarantee the same outcomes for all people. But look at that definition. What is "enough"? The same amount may be enough, or more than enough, for some, but not nearly enough for others. If every person has the same amount, there will still be some who have plenty, and others who are hungry. This applies in the figurative sense, as well as the literal, food-related sense.
Therefore, it is better to allow each individual to attempt to earn what he (or she) can. Those who earn more than they need, especially in America, are very likely to give willingly to those who need more than they earn.
On a side note, I am glad to see that whoever authored that sign used the serial comma.
18 March 2010
It shall be unlawful for any agency of the Executive branch of government to establish or enforce policies and regulations not explicitly included in Acts passed by the Legislative branch.
This would stop, and even reverse, the power grabs and un-Constitutional social engineering by agencies like the EPA, the FCC, the FDA, the BATFE, etc. The TSA might disappear overnight! The IRS's "rulings" and "opinions" would matter no more than mine.
10 March 2010
I'm no Bible thumper, and I don't want to turn people off by making this blog sound preachy, but I believe that to follow the Constitution requires people of this nation to have the kind of firm morality that comes from training and practice of Judeo-Christian religion.
The first branch of Libertarianism often puts forth the argument that they should be able to do what they want at home--such as use marijuana--as long as it doesn't hurt anybody else. I submit this article for your consideration.
The main point of the article, in case you didn't read it all the way through, is that young people who have used cannabis longer have a much greater tendency to exhibit psychotic symptoms, or even fully develop psychotic disorders. While this study only covered young people, I think it's likely that it's the length of time of use--rather than beginning age--that is to blame for these ill effects.
So what if these young people now cannot complete a higher education, get a good job, support themselves and a family, and help to create wealth? How does that hurt the rest of society? Oh, and by the way, they won't be able to build up a good retirement savings, so they'll be depending on their children--and yours, and mine--to give them a pension.
So much for anarchy.
02 March 2010
"What is at stake is our ability to use the rule of law as an instrument of human redemption."--Al Gore
Never mind the idea that God has provided for our redemption through Jesus Christ. It is environmental law--and socialized medicine, and all the other means of controlling the people of the world through laws and regulations, no doubt--that will provide redemption for humans.
It is the notion that man can be perfected if given the proper indoctrination and training by other men that drives these nutcases to their leftist ends. They have rejected the idea that man is imperfect by nature and can only be perfected by the Grace of God. So there must be something to fill the void, and they believe it is they and their rule that will do it.
Even if you don't subscribe to the Christian beliefs, do you really want these people prescribing your behavior? I certainly do not.
17 February 2010
The first memories I have of being told that compromise is the best way to get things done are from Sesame Street. The children's "educational" program. On public television. Run by progressives, I must assume.
Compromise is the best way for progressives to get bits of their agenda done. That's why they push it so much.
Now is not the time for compromise. Now is the time to stand up for what we believe; to defeat the progressive agenda; not to allow "a little bit more"; to insist on doing what's right.
10 February 2010
"Why is that? The thinking that warmer air temperatures on the earth, a higher air temperature, has a greater capacity to hold moisture at any temperature," Ratigan said.
He said first, "warmer", then "higher", then insists on it being "any temperature." Which is it? It can't be both.
This kind of inconsistency knows no bounds in progressive speech. If people were actually taught to think, like in the private school I attended, nobody would believe any of it.
08 February 2010
01 February 2010
My first reaction is, "Good! The State Bureaucratic Apparatus is actually refusing to spend money on something!"
Furthermore, I have heard Gov. Jim Gibbons express on more than one occasion his belief that the Yucca Mtn project was conceived as a way to ensure the American nuclear industry was shut down once and for all. He is against the project not on environmental grounds--he's a trained geological engineer--but on the grounds that the spent fuel should not be simply dumped and sealed. Instead, he favors reprocessing the spent fuel into new fuel rods that can be used in even more efficient ways in new plants.
The best way the administration could support a growth in nuclear energy in the U.S. is to appoint judges who won't rule against new plants because of environmental law; better yet, propose the repeal of the legislation that allows environmental groups to bring suit after suit to retard or stop the construction of new nuclear plants. And that wouldn't cost a bit!
The fact that the administration is not proposing these changes, not the failure to fund a particular project, is what puts the lie to Obama's statement.
27 January 2010
- Reduction of the State Bureaucratic Apparatus (SBA)--the "government"
- Elimination of programs that are tantamount to the transfer of money from earners to non-earners
- Lowering taxes, which should be a direct result of these first two items
- Ending the creation of, and in fact reducing or eliminating, the intrusive regulations created by the SBA
- Giving individuals the freedom, and allowing them to keep what they earn so they will have the means, to build their own success
- Ending the ridiculous notion that the State Agencies that we do have must not acknowledge any religions, or especially must avoid any references to Judaism or Christianity
Republican's bill killed last week, exact same bill passes unanimously today with Democrat sponsor
OK, so partisanship exists. OK, so a bill sponsored by one party fails, while the same legislation sponsored by another party passes.
What does this legislation say? Why is the U. S. Congress passing any kind of legislation about the treatment of water rights completely within one state? It sounds to me like this legislation is un-Constitutional, and should never have been proposed at all.
I didn't mention this because of my haste to post this at first; but the first time around, there were 4 Republican Congressmen who voted against this (God bless 'em!): Kevin Brady (TX), John Linder (GA), Ron Paul (TX), and Joe Wilson (SC).
However, as the WE article states, Roll Call 22 for H.R. 4474 passed 415-0, with 18 members not voting. This bill authorizes expenditure of an unnamed amount of money for building a right-of-way across "non-Federal land", and for potential "reconstruction" of some sort of "facility". Sounds like a nice slab of spareribs, at the very least.
21 January 2010
First, the candidate for the Republican party has won a U. S. Senate seat in a state where registered Democrats outnumber Republicans nearly 3 to 1. Congratulations! It's a little surprising the Kennedy in the race didn't do better.
Second, in Mr. Brown's victory speech, Major Garrett noted that did not use the word "Republican" prominently, if at all. Perhaps that isn't surprising, given that much of his support came from voters who identify themselves as "independent." Just what does this indicate about how he will represent the Commonwealth in the Senate? The MOOP did point out that Mr. Brown voted along GOP lines 96% of the time; but did he introduce any measures that were actually conservative?
Next, I read somebody's claim that Mr. Brown actually supports a state-run, universal health care system. Does that mean he just doesn't like the one described in the current bills? Or if it gets the right amendments, he'd support it? Or was that person wrong?
Then there are the campaigns. Mr. Brown did an excellent job of getting his message heard, and got a lot--an awful lot--of help from social media. For the last week of the campaign, it seemed that 2/3 of the tweets in my stream were promoting him. Granted, I follow mostly conservatives, but that's still a pretty big proportion. And a large part of those folks were advocating (and giving) donations to his campaign from all over the nation, maybe even the world.
Mrs. Coakley, on the other hand, seemed to have a message mostly of blaming George W. Bush and trying to associate Mr. Brown with Bush's policies. I believe most independents reject that argument now. Also, she did not use the new media well. Some would argue that she didn't use the old media very well, either. I have not seen any reports of her war chest.
I was going to add more about the messages, but this is rambling too much already. I guess the bottom line is, Scott Brown is relatively conservative, for Massachusetts. He successfully campaigned to the idea of independence and against one-party control. We now have two years to see how he behaves in the Senate. I, for one, will be paying attention.
Update 2010-02-22: Apparently, Mr. Brown has disappointed many of those who didn't know much about him by voting for the so-called "jobs" bill, a.k.a. Stimulus II. Sounds like a Romney-like move to me.
Oh, and I now have 6 readers. Woo-hoo! Thank you all.
10 January 2010
Well, it appears that others have thought the same thing before. American Thinker has a piece that says what I've been trying to say, just more eloquently. Please take the time to read it.
07 January 2010
For those of you who've missed it, Glenn Beck has spent this first week of the new year showing how his, and his team's, research has produced enough evidence to settle the questions he's been asking for the past months. The self-styled "progressives" in America have been building their utopia for over a hundred years, and they are just about to cause the Republic to collapse so they can replace it with their centrally-planned, centrally-managed, all-controlling system--the State Bureaucratic Apparatus, or SBA, as I call it.
What I'm wondering is, will they really be able to force some measure of compliance like in the former Soviet Union? Or will the American people, to use a much-maligned phrase, just say no? And will the American military, true patriots to whom we owe so much, side with us, the people?
I, like Glenn, am very hopeful about our future. We are building a sense of community, with the tea party movement, and the grass-roots energizing of the Republican party getting back to Conservative principles. Let's keep it going strong throughout this election year, and all the way through 2012. We are fired up now!
From the World Wide Words newsletter, a "Sic!" item:
CNN's Political Ticker reported on 28 November 2009 about a basketball
game that President Obama attended in support of his brother-in-law
Craig Robinson: "Robinson, who coaches the Oregon State Beavers,
was cheered on by the President, who snacked on popcorn, the First
Lady, Sasha, Malia and the girls' grandmother Marian Robinson."
Thanks to Joel Gardner for that unsettling image.
With an appetite like that, one wonders how he stays so thin