Friday, April 18, 2014

Support the NRA (National Rifle Association)

Today, I saw this comment on Facebook:
The NRA was founded by statist generals that got their arses kicked by better riflemen, every single anti-gun law happened on the NRA watch, including the NRA writing bad legislation and attacking good groups like Gun Owners of America.
Yes, the NRA (and its affiliates, NRA-ILA and NRA-PVF) compromises on gun rights. Yes, they've helped write anti-gun laws. Yes, they've supported anti-liberty politicians. Yes, the NRA was founded by Union generals who were dismayed by the poor shooting of urban Union soldiers. However, had those generals been statists as the writer alleges, they would have made the NRA a government program -- not a private organization. Please don't throw derogatory adjectives around unless they really fit.

Regarding NRA's history of compromise, another writer in that thread correctly wrote:
There is no compromise in God given rights.
I agree: There must be no compromise on God-given rights. Ever. That's why I write to NRA leadership and to my congressmen to reject compromise on the inspired principles contained in our nation's founding documents. But, because politics can be so dirty, only compromise gives one a voice when a majority of politicians are elected by idiots. Disagree with compromise on God-given rights? Then, give your full support to those who fight for those rights so they don't have to compromise!

Have you ever wondered why a purported gun-rights organization such as the NRA would compromise gun rights? Because, at only 5 million members (only 5% of gun owners) they have little power to dictate gun rights. Because of lukewarm (Revelation 3:16) support of America's estimated 100 million gun owners, the NRA can do little more than compromise. Can you imagine how bad the Gun Control Act of 1968 (and all other gun-control laws) would have been had the NRA not been there mitigate the effects of the bill? (As for the other gun-rights organizations -- GOA, SAF, CCRKBA, JFPO, (I'm a member all of these and more) etc. -- as good and valuable as the are, they are so small in comparison to the NRA, that they have no perceptible voice in the nation's capitol or in the state capitols. Sadly, lukewarm gun owners support them far less than they do the NRA.)

As far as gun rights go, most gun owners are their own worst enemy -- they blame gun control on someone else -- often the NRA. If at least 25% of America's gun owners would vote like gun owners and join and actively support the NRA and their state-level gun-rights organization, the only gun law we'd have would be the Second Amendment. Anti-gun politicians and activists must surely be delighted by the prevalence of anti-NRA gun owners.

Only membership in the NRA gives a gun-owner a voice in the NRA. NRA leadership has no obligation to listen to non-members -- especially anti-NRA people. Example of the voice of members: For years, the NRA supported Harry Reid for political expediency. At the demand of NRA members (not non-members), the NRA stopped supporting him in 2008. You might have noticed Reid's sharp turn against gun rights immediately thereafter.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

A new American Revolution is overdue

We are desperately overdue a revolution in this nation to throw off this tyrannical government.

Fortunately, the founders gave us the tools for a peaceful revolution if only we had voters smart enough to take advantage of it. It involves Americans using the Constitution as it was intended. (You know about the Constitution, don't you -- that allegedly obsolete document written by dead white guys?)

How is that revolution conducted? Every two years, the Constitution gives us the opportunity to replace the entire House of Representatives and a third of the Senate with wise men and women who respect the limits on government that are written into the Constitution -- that's most of the Legislative Branch every two years! Every four years, we have the opportunity to replace the entire Executive Branch with a president and bureaucrats who respect the limits on government that are written into the Constitution. Over time, the newly-elected officials replace the existing judges with wise men and women who respect the limits on government that are written into the Constitution. Replacing a government with a new one is revolution. All without bloodshed.

Unfortunately, most American voters are fools. That is why they reelect over 90% of the very Congressmen they claim to despise. Since most American voters refuse to participate in a peaceful revolution, it seems that the only alternative is a violent one (as almost happened this month near Bunkerville, Nevada). Nobody knows how that's gonna turn out. Perhaps it'll end like the 1917 revolution which dismantled the Tsarist autocracy, replacing it with something far worse. Or, maybe it'll be more like the longer American Revolution (1775-1783) which ejected the British autocracy.

I prefer the peaceful revolution. But we need smarter voters to make it happen.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Lois Lerner: The face of an out-of-control government

Honestly, now, do you see any contempt in this woman's expression?

Some in Congress want to hold this nice lady, former IRS bureaucrat Lois Lerner in contempt of Congress for her refusal to disclose details of how and why she and her fellow bureaucrats targeted organizations she disliked politically.

Contempt of Congress? Big deal!

The elephant in the room is the fact that nearly all bureaucrats have contempt for legislators and the People alike. I defy anyone to identify just one government agency that fears Congress or state/local legislatures or respects the Constitution.

Every bureaucrat knows that Congress and state legislatures are composed of politicians -- Democrat and Republican -- who posture a lot (as they are doing n the Lerner case), but never do anything worthwhile about the problems in our out-of-control government (Lerner will never be disciplined). Bureaucrats know that no matter how evil their deeds, they will not be fired -- they likely will be promoted (as have the agents involved in Fast and Furious, Waco, and Ruby Ridge). Instead, legislators will perpetually fund and expand every agency they create. (Government even grew under the so-called "Sequester".)

Perhaps the biggest problems are that Congress adopts a bill of a few hundred or a few thousand pages creating or modifying a a government agency or program. This legislation is typically written by the very bureaucrats who would benefit from the legislation. The legislation includes the vary dangerous delegation of authority to the agencies to write tens of thousands of pages their own laws and rules which too often go beyond or counter to the will of Congress.

One thing Congress needs to do is to write a sunset clause into every piece of legislation they write so that every bureaucracy they create automatically dies in a few years unless specifically renewed -- with another sunset clause.

We need smarter voters -- voters who elect only liberty-loving limited-government statesmen -- not big-government statists who have a better than 90% reelection rate.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Feinstein's monster

Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA, Chair of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence) says the CIA spied on her and her intelligence committee. Now, she suddenly she realizes the Constitution exists, is not out-dated, and demands its protection against rogue, illegitimate federal agencies such as the CIA.

Senator Feinstein, you are one of the aristocratic statists who created, fed, sustained, and eternalized this bloated, out-of-control central government with a bureaucracy that is no longer accountable to the people, the states, or even to Congress or the Whitehouse.

Think about the countless oversight hearing conducted by Congress. Why are those hearings necessary? because virtually none of the extra-constitutional alphabet soup of bureaucracies you helped create and/or perpetuate follow the Constitution or even care about what Congress or the People thinks, says, or does. Every bureaucrat knows that you will posture in those hearings for the benefit of the press like you do now about the CIA. Every bureaucrat knows that when the posturing is over that you will then vote to give them even more money and power.

You are one of the elitists who thinks they are above the Constitution and entitled to defy it with every legislative act you conjure up, thereby destroying the protections it provides.

You have finally suffered what the Founders suffered at the hands of King George III when they wrote the Declaration of Independence and which we Liberty-loving commoners have seen for decades:
He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance.
Perhaps the worst part of this story is that you represent some of the most Constitution-ignorant and Constitution-hating voters in the land. Now, that loathing for the Constitution is coming home to roost in your house.

Don't come whining to the press or anyone else when the monster you created turns on you.

We need smarter voters.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Defending religion against the power of government

The Arizona's religious freedom bill (SB1062) addresses the fact that some people think they have a right to coerce (and to use government to that end) and that those who disagree have a duty to obey. Opponents of this bill reject not only religious liberty, but also free speech while demanding that their own form of religion (secular humanism) and free speech be imposed.

I invite all who oppose this legislation to actually read it before jumping to conclusions. (It is truly unfortunate that today's legislatures must cobble together so many words to protect the rights already so eloquently protected by the First Amendment to the US Constitution.)

This legislation would simply protect a business owner's right to not violate their religious convictions when conducting business. The bill reinforces the First Amendment to the US Constitution which already prohibits federal interference with "the free exercise" of religion and the Fourteenth Amendment which extends that prohibition to the States.
Never do anything against conscience even if the state demands it. — Albert Einstein
An individual who breaks a law that conscience tells him is unjust, and who willingly accepts the penalty of imprisonment in order to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the highest respect for the law. — Martin Luther King, Jr.
There really should be no need for this legislation because the Constitution already provides the protections this legislation would provide. (Wouldn't be nice if all politicians and judges simply followed the Constitution they swear to follow?) But, in recent decades, activist judges have imposed their own opinions and/or applied flawed judicial precedents, thus depriving good people of rights guaranteed by the Constitution.

For those capable of thinking, another writer, Gary DeMar came up with a thought-provoking list:
Sometimes the best way to explain to people the nature of something is to put the shoe on the other foot. Here are some "what ifs."
• What if a print-shop owner holds to a "pro-choice" view on abortion and a pro-life group comes in and wants shirts and signs made that read "Babies are Murdered Here" to use in front of an abortion clinic? Should the owner of the shop be forced to make the shirts and signs?
• What if a print-shop owner who is homosexual gets an order for shirts and signs that are to read "God Hates Fags"? Should the owner be forced to fill the order under penalty of law?
• Should a supporter of PETA who owns a print shop be forced to make signs and shirts that read "PETA: People Eating Tasty Animals"?
• Should a baker be forced to supply cakes to a KKK-themed wedding or birthday party?
• Should an atheist who owns a print shop be forced to print signs and shirts that read "All Atheists are Going to Hell"?
• Should a printer be forced to print shirts and signs that read "Hitler Was Right"?
• Should a photographer be forced to film and photograph a wedding that has a "White Power" or KKK theme?
This bill doesn't legitimize or mandate discrimination against any sort of person such as homosexuals or anti-homosexuals as implied by certain activists. It simply protects businesses from being required to provide a religiously-objectionable service or product to another person. It is one state's small defensive maneuver against the Left's ongoing battle to silence the voice of the religious in the public square and to cow organized religion into sanctioning the immoral agenda of the Left including abortion.

I suspect that if Arizona's Governor Jan Brewer vetoes this bill, it will be because of the expected cost to defend it against Leftist social engineers -- not because of the merits of the bill. That is a sad statement on what the Left has done to this "land of the free and the home of the brave".

Ironically, opponents of this bill -- which protects diverse religious beliefs -- are the most vocal in demanding tolerance of their own diversity. The leaders of my church teach that we are to give due respect to all, even to those who have beliefs or behaviors I might disagree with (yet, some single out my church as hateful). Is there any reason why those who reject certain religious standards can't also be respectful?
If they believe their own rhetoric, that we’re hateful bigots, why would they even risk eating our cakes? — Jan LaRue

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Rein in the government -- beginning with the EPA!

He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance. -- US Declaration of Independence
Congress has created scores of agencies which are out of control and which don't really solve the problems they were intended to solve.

Most of these agencies have no constitutional authority to exist (see Article I, Section 8 of the US Constitution). These agencies are under the executive branch, transferring to the president ever-expanding extra-constitutional power.

These agencies employ hundreds of thousands of employees who are unaccountable to the voters and even to Congress. Congress has abdicated its legislative power by delegating most of its lawmaking authority to these unaccountable bureaucrats. The US Constitution was designed specifically to prevent such abuses!

Congress has shown little interest in reining in any of the monsters it has created.

Among the worst of Congress' monsters is clearly the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Over the years, this agency has imposed ever harsher standards for fuel economy which have resulted in cars and trucks that are so lightweight and fragile that they disintegrate in collisions and cannot carry the payload (in weight or passengers) that vehicles of 50 years ago could carry. This is the reason SUVs have become so popular -- not because soccer moms need or want a huge four-wheel-drive four-door truck with an enclosed cargo area, but because they simply need a vehicle that will safely and comfortably carry what a full-sized 1964 Ford station wagon could carry. (When you really need to get some work done, ya gotta burn carbon or fire up a nuke.) But, today's laws are based on the presumption that we all want and deserve nothing more than a Yugo.

Now, Obama has announced his instructions to the EPA to further tighten fuel economy standards for trucks. This is nothing more than another step toward forcing manufacturers to make products that the consumers, farmers, and businesses don't want or need.

Every member of Congress must muster the courage and integrity to reassert its sole legislative authority under Article I of the US Constitution by:
1 - Make the laws, not delegate power to make laws,
2 - Where law-making authority is delegated, all such regulations must be reviewed and ratified by roll-call vote of Congress,
3 - All current agencies must be reviewed for constitutionality and those found to not comply with authority given in the Constitution must be sunseted within 5 years,
4 - All future agencies created must have a maximum five-year sunset.

Congress must immediately begin these steps by eliminating the EPA. Where necessary, the roles now assumed by the EPA will continue to be accomplished at the state level as required by the Tenth Amendment to the US Constitution.

What are your congressmen doing right now to cut the size and power of our bloated, intrusive, oppressive, inefficient, expensive federal bureaucracy?

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

An anti-gun elitist's view of a pro-gun judicial decison

Through a series of gun-rights court cases beginning with the 2008 Heller decision, the US Supreme Court has settled the fact that individuals have the constitutionally-protected right to keep and bear arms. Now, a case before the Ninth Circuit challenges a policy imposed by San Diego County requiring residents to show a "pressing need" to be able to receive a permit to carry weapons outside the home.

Of course, the idea that the Second Amendment makes any distinction between "bearing" (ie "carrying") in public as opposed to private venues is simply silly. Thankfully, the normally silly Ninth Circuit acknowledged this truth. As expected, this has anti-gun activists in a fit:
Neither history or precedent supports this aberrant, split decision that concocts a dangerous right of people to carry hidden handguns in public places to people whom law enforcement has determined that they have no good cause or qualifications to do so. -- Jonathan Lowy, Director, Legal Action Project, Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence
Mr. Lowy, the judicial decision you reference does not "concoct a dangerous right of people to carry hidden handguns in public places". It partially restores that constitutionally-guaranteed natural right! Further, there is no rational reason why any responsible American should ever be required to prove to any government agent that he/she has "good cause or qualifications" to exercise any constitutionally-protected natural right right.

Ironically, Mr. Lowey, California arrived at needing this long overdue decision on concealed carry because anti-liberty thugs like you legislatively took away the constitutionally-guaranteed right to open carry for most California citizens. Because many California counties refuse to issue concealed-carry permits to ordinary law-abiding citizens, that left responsible residents with anti-gun sheriffs in California with no ability to lawfully carry the best means of self-protection -- a firearm. Hence, the litigation and judicial decision you arrogantly condemn.

BTW, Mr. Lowey, we know that you (like most anti-gun elitists) enjoy the protection of the gun. Hypocrite! The Constitution was designed to protect us commoners from politicians who think like you do.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Doctors, guns, and the NRA

On making a visit to a cardiologist, a patient recently was asked of fill out a history which included the questions shown in this image.

None of those questions are any business of a cardiologist, let alone questions 11 and 12.

Now, if the doctor is also a volunteer fireman, he/she might be qualified to ask about #8 -- when serving in that capacity. Likewise, if he/she is also an NRA-certified firearms safety instructor, he/she might be qualified to ask about #11 and #12 -- when serving in that capacity.

When I'm paying him/her to be a cardiologist, he/she had better stick to what he/she is being paid to do and what he/she is qualified to do.

One observer -- apparently hostile to the NRA (National Rifle Association) -- claimed that "The NRA would tell you to answer honestly to all questions on the survey. They're into you disclosing all kinds of personal information on the 4473s and the NICS. The NRA designed both. So, what does that tell you about the NRA and questionnaires?"

I wonder if that observer has ever wondered why the NRA had its hand in 4473s, NICS (National Instant Criminal Background Check System), and all other gun-control legislation? Because:

1 - It'd be far worse without NRA influence.
2 - The NRA has little power beyond compromising with the enemy.

I agree that the NRA has made too-frequent regrettable mistakes such as supporting anti-liberty politicians and compromising on anti-gun legislation and regulation. But, at only 5 million members, that's all it can do. Although it is the most hated lobbying organization on Capitol Hill, the NRA is overwhelmingly outnumbered by the membership numbers of anti-gun organizations such AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics), AARP (American Association of Retired Persons), AMA (American Medical Association), NEA (National Education Association) and other labor unions, etc. It's outfunded by the likes of George Soros, Michael Bloomberg, and the Joyce Foundation. The reality is that the number of voters a lobbyist represents and the money they bring is what matters to most politicians -- not what's right or what the Constitution says.

Now, if we could increase NRA membership to a mere 25% of the estimated 80-100 million gun owners, the NRA would have the clout to dictate the law -- not compromise and try to mitigate the law. Imagine the clout the NRA would have if 100% of gun owners were members! (One might prefer to support JPFO (Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership), GOA (Gun Owners of America), Firearms Coalition, or CCRKBA (Citizens' Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms) over the NRA, but the size of those organizations is insignificant by comparison. The NRA is the closest to a big dog in the gun-rights fight and the only one has any clout at all in DC.)

As for the ugly things the NRA does (as mentioned above), if one isn't a member, he/she has no say. On the other hand, members get a vote on who will be in NRA leadership positions. That drives the NRA's agenda. When a member writes to NRA leaders and mentions his/her membership status, they pay attention. (Note that the NRA stopped its support for Harry Reid after input from members -- not the complaints of anti-NRA outsiders.)

Everyone who owns one or more arms or who appreciated the right to own arms should be a member of the NRA. Everyone who isn't a member is only one of approximately 95-million gun owners riding in the wagon while five million pull.

Restore the right to arms in and on federal property

In clear violation of the Second Amendment to the US Constitution, 18 USC 930(d)(3) prohibits responsible adults from carrying a "firearm or other dangerous weapon" into any federal facility with an exception for cases "incident to hunting or other lawful purposes." When t comes to self-protection the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and firearms; National Park Service; Corps of Engineers; and the other anti-gun denizens of the central government have read this essential exception out of the law -- by executive fiat.

With 39 CFR 232.1(l), the US Postal Service is even more restrictive: "No person while on postal property may carry firearms, other dangerous or deadly weapons, or explosives, either openly or concealed, or store the same on postal property, except for official purposes."

What is it that congressmen and unelected regulators don't understand about the simple and clear phrase "shall not be infringed?"

I can accept a restriction on arms in a limited number of designated places where competent security screening and armed officers are in place to substitute for the disarming of responsible adults (eg court rooms, airport secure areas, etc.). But I cannot tolerate the disarming of responsible Americans when the entity doing the disarming fails to provide comparable or better security.

Compromising the protections of the Bill of Rights is such a severe threat to Liberty that no right identified in the Bill of Rights should ever be compromised in any way other than through specific legislation from Congress or an amendment to the Constitution. Authority to infringe constitutionally-enumerated rights must never be delegated or assigned to anyone outside of Congress!

Of course, any rational person knows and understands that all restrictions on arms only affect responsible people. History and reason indicate that those bent on disobeying laws against violence also disobey laws against arms.

Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) has offered an amendment to the Postal Reform Act (S.1486) in the Governmental Affairs Committee. If adopted, this amendment will restore the right of responsible adults to drive into a post office parking lot with a gun and to carry it into the post office and other federal facilities to the extent state law would allow the carry of that firearm in any other venue.

However, I would like to see Senator Paul amend his amendment to address "arms" instead of "firearms". (The Second Amendment protects the keeping and bearing of "arms". Pocket knives are "arms" too!)

This amendment is a tiny step in the right direction back to following the US Constitution which every congressman, president, judge, attorney, political appointee, and bureaucrat swore to follow and protect. I ardently support this move.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Hate crimes vs equal protection of the law

A hate crime occurs when a perpetrator targets a victim because of his or her perceived membership in a certain minority social group such as
• disability,
• ethnicity,
• gender identity,
• sexual orientation,
• language
• nationality,
• race, or
• religion.

The hate-crime concept is based on the notion that a crime is somehow more egregious if it is motivated by bigotry rather than covetousness, revenge, rage, or for the fun of it. Hate crimes laws are actually "thought crimes" laws that violate the right to freedom of speech and of conscience and subject individuals to scrutiny of their beliefs rather than focusing on a person's criminal actions.

Hate crime laws are supposedly intended to deter bias-motivated violence. They enhance the penalties associated with conduct that is already criminal under other laws.

Ironically, hate-crime laws are promoted by some of the most hateful among us! In practice, these hate-crime laws seem to protect the above listed protected classes from prosecution under hate-crime laws because they seem to be presumed to be free of hate.

What these laws really do is provide special protections and rights for the above specific categories of people, violating the Constitution's (Fourteenth Amendment) concept of equal protection of the law.

I am deeply concerned by the hostile effect of hate-crime laws on Christians in particular. For example, these laws establish the legal framework to persecute and prosecute those who refuse, for moral and religious reasons, to agree or teach their children that homosexuality, transgender, cross-dressing etc. is normal and desirable.

Evidence of a person's beliefs will be used against any individual who is even suspected of committing a crime. Even Rep. Arthur Davis, who supported a hate-crime bill in 2007, admitted that under this law a minister could be charged with the crime of incitement to violence and punished with a fine or prison if the minister preached that homosexuality is a serious sin and a person in the congregation left church and committed a crime against a homosexual.

The growing cry for "diversity" is simply a demand for acceptance of what many believe to be deviant behavior. The "diversity" movement closely parallels the call for hate-crime legislation. Hate-crime laws intimidate people with certain moral views into forced acceptance of what they believe to be deviant, immoral lifestyles by criminalizing those who reject such immoral behavior.

I believe that everyone, regardless of disability, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, language, nationality, race, religion, etc., should be given the same respect and dignity due to a son or daughter of God. Yet, I oppose governments mandating that respect and dignity. I condemn all criminal behavior regardless of disability, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, language, nationality, race, religion, etc. In the words of the leadership of my church:
God's universal fatherhood and love charges each of us with an innate and reverent acknowledgement of our shared human dignity. We are to love one another. We are to treat each other with respect as brothers and sisters and fellow children of God, no matter how much we may differ from one another.
To presume that a crime is more serious simply because some prosecutor, accuser, or victim believes the perpetrator is a bigot trivializes crimes (and their victims) committed by non-bigots. I therefore oppose any so-called hate-crimes legislation.

There is no authority in the Constitution for Congress and the President to pass "hate-crimes" legislation. The Tenth Amendment clearly places that authority in the States. State legislators and governors must oppose any efforts to pass "hate-crimes" legislation.

Friday, January 3, 2014

Equal opportunity for equal ability and effort

There are plenty of military occupations that aren't a good fit for a certain category of people. These occupations demand brute strength and endurance under a heavy load. There are some people who are fit enough to run a marathon. But, can they carry a wounded buddy, two rifles, and a 65-pound rucksack to safety 50 yards away? No Marine in his right mind wants to fight alongside another Marine who can't.

This issue has repeatedly reared it's head at least since the early '70s when I first joined the Air Force as an ROTC cadet. In spite of reason and basic biology, social engineers keep trying to put women into military occupations where they simply don't fit well. Yet, much to everyone's surprise, the Marines (the last holdouts to be politically cleansed) are learning that women don't have the strength of a man!

When I was flying the C-141 jet transport in the Air Force back in '76-'81, I was occasionally asked to participate in firefighter training. My job was to show the firefighters how to shut down the airplane if the crew is incapacitated. Then, my crew and I served as training dummies as if we were said incapacitated crewmembers.

In those pre-women-on-the-rescue-crew days, it was always very reassuring to know that the firefighter yanking me out of the seat and carrying me down two aircraft ladders was another 200-pound man who met rigorous fitness standards -- not a 110-pound woman who couldn't do 3 pull-ups.

I never got a single bump, scrape, or bruise from those training events. I'm sure there are a handful women that could do that too, but in general, a female firefighter in today's equal-opportunity military would probably either break her neck and mine getting me out or would be forced to leave me roasting in the fire.

As a 23-year veteran, I saw cases where women did just as well as men in their assigned specialty -- sometimes better. I also saw cases where they were a handicap to the unit and a danger to themselves. I saw cases where they exploited their status as women to get easier duty. One common case in aviation maintenance is for women to claim pregnancy during bad weather knowing that pregnant women shouldn't be exposed to radar and radio waves and fuel fumes common on the flight line.

Equal opportunity is great -- if everyone is equally up to the job. But, if any person or group of persons isn't capable of doing a particular job correctly, safely, and without jeopardizing the mission or fellow servicemen, they need to find a job that's a better fit.

The armed forces exist to fight when called upon -- not to be a sociology lab.

BTW, Even I can't do the job anymore either. That's why servicemen are retired when they're still relatively young, but getting too old to get on the horse.

Obama's new anti-rights "executive actions"

Most, if not all, high-profile shootings and other acts of violence have involved perpetrators known to somebody to be dangerously ill. I've written repeatedly about this problem. Clearly, persons who have a mental illness combined with behavior or other signals that makes them a danger to themselves or others should be restricted from possessing dangerous items of any kind.

I therefore support reasonable steps to accomplish this goal provided there is absolutely no compromise of the right of responsible persons to easily and responsibly acquire, posses, and use arms.

I also support the restoration of gun rights to formerly mentally-ill adults who have been successfully treated and to former criminals who have reformed their lives.

I am concerned by today's Whitehouse announcement of new "executive actions" on background checks for gun purchases. It appears to me that the Obama Administration is struggling to expand the pool of gun-restricted mental-health patients in an effort to limit gun ownership.

In its announcement, the Administration, " proposing to clarify that the statutory term 'committed to a mental institution' includes involuntary inpatient as well as outpatient commitments....."

Until this "executive action", your medical information (including some mental health information) has been protected by HIPAA (the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996). Until now, no one, not even the government, could legally access your private medical records. Yet, with the stroke of a pen, President Obama has unilaterally struck down parts of this important privacy law to make medical and mental health information available to the FBI for firearm background checks.

This move will be a huge disincentive for gun owners to voluntarily seek appropriate help when they need it. For example, I know an individual who had serious psychological reactions to a combination of medications for ADHD. Because to the side effects of these drugs, this person needed hospitalization to be safely taken off the drugs. That person is is fine now, but I fear that Obama's "executive action" would permanently bar this person from the enjoyment and protection of arms.

Other gun-rights activists are also concerned. For example, Jeff Knox announced:
We really have a problem with what they're doing and the way they're doing it. Congress has looked at this issue and has rejected action on this issue. When Congress looks at something and says 'no', that's not traditionally a green light for the White House to go and do it on their own. That's an overreach on the part of the executive — and if we had a Congress and a system that was functioning properly, they would slap him down for this and they would refuse to allow this to happen.
The Administration's latest move seems to me to be another deliberate step down the slippery slope toward Soviet-style gulags where political enemies -- especially gun-rights advocates -- are branded mentally-ill sufficiently to justify the deprivation of their God-given rights.

On that point, Knox has more to say:
There's a reason we hate the ATF (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives). The agency is under the Justice Department and operates the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS). They've earned our animosity. They came after us over and over again....Every time they promulgate a new law or a new regulation, they try and make it sound like it's about keeping violent and crazy people away from guns, but the way it's enforced is always they come after us -- the regular gun owners, because we're the easy targets. It's really difficult to find violent and crazy people and catch them in the act. It's really easy to find me -- to comb through my files, my gun safe, my paperwork -- and find some error that I've made and hang me out to dry because of it. They're using these laws to attack us, not to go after criminals, and that's the big problem.
This "executive-action" raises several important questions, none of which the Obama Administration seems willing to answer publicly:
• What is mental illness?
• Who is mentally ill?
• How mentally ill must one be to justify revocation of a fundamental right?
• How "normal" must a person be to own and use firearms?
• Who makes the determination of a person's fitness?
• Are mental-health professionals and facilities really trained, experienced, and equipped to accurately and reliably identify those who pose a risk without infringing the rights of those who are not a risk?
• What steps will be taken to ensure uniform and reasonable standards will be applied to all?
• What qualifies as a mental health facility?
• If treatment (outpatient or inpatient) is successful, will the patient still be barred from possessing arms?
• Will there be due process of law?
• What steps will be taken to protect privacy?
• Which is more important in the minds of the policymakers -- individual rights or security (control)?
• Who gets to make the rules? Will there be an opportunity for public comment or legislative oversight?

Most who are treated by mental health professionals are not mentally ill at all or their illness does not cause them to be a threat to self or others. Nevertheless, Obama's initiative seems destined to trap these responsible Americans into the gun-restricted category. Unfortunately, the NRA seems willing to scapegoat these people in exchange for letting the rest of us off the hook. Such people could be "outpatients" who: • Check themselves into a "fat farm" or otherwise seek help for weight loss, • Seek help to overcome addictions such as food addictions, pornography, or gambling, • Seek the help of a psychiatrist for treatment/counseling for ADHD, PMS, domestic abuse (as a victim), PTSD, rape, or anxiety, • Attend a parenting class or marriage or family counseling, • Respond affirmatively when asked by a physician whether you have a gun in the home, • Attend a diversity-sensitivity class required by your employer, or • Attend a driving re-education course because you have a lead foot.

We already know how hostile our nation has been, from Clinton to today, to the gun rights of our war veterans. More than 150,000 law-abiding veterans have already lost their constitutional rights -- with no due process whatsoever -- because they consulted a VA therapist about a traumatic incident in Iraq, Afghanistan, or the Balkans. This has been a test to see what our politicians can get away with. They got away with it with our vets. Does anyone think that non-vets will be treated any better?

Obama, his staff, and handlers are probing and testing to see how far he can go with their anti-gun agenda. We know he has nearly half of the voters behind him (virtually all of those who voted for him still have no regrets) along with a majority in the Senate and much of the House of Representatives. It is no problem for the Administration to shop around for federal judges who will side with him and his anti-gun supporters. All of these expect Obama to legislate from the Whitehouse -- to unilaterally impose harsh restrictions on civilian arms. Exploiting the mental health aspect is an ideal foot-in-the-door to bypass the People and their elected representatives.

Under Obama's new regulations, tens of millions of police and firemen with PTSD and or people who, as children, were diagnosed with ADHD could lose their constitutional rights without any court order, merely because they sought treatment a benefit under a federal program.

According to the US Constitution, the central government has one legislative branch. That means that only that branch is authorized to legislate -- to make law. The executive branch is designated -- and sworn -- to faithfully execute those laws which are constitutional -- not to make up its own laws as it goes. The executive and judicial branches are out of line when they make laws. The legislative branch is out of line when they authorize the other branches to make laws or ignore them when they do so without congressional authorization.

Every congressman has a sworn duty lead the fight against any president's usurpation of power, including Obama's expansion of what constitutes a gun-restricted person. I also urge Congress to establish a functioning process whereby the mentally ill and former criminals can have their gun rights restored after a reasonable period of responsible behavior. And it must firmly defend its sole-legislative authority.
All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing. -- Edmund Burke
The few good people in Congress are doing nothing. The same is true of most American voters.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Waste products of copper mining, your drinking water, and skepticism‎

In 2011, the Bingham Canyon Copper Mine in Utah produced approximately 237,000 tons of its primary product -- copper (about $1.5 billion), along with 379,000 troy ounces of gold (about $455 million), 3.2 million troy ounces of silver (about $64 million), about 30 million pounds of molybdenum (about $300 million), and about 1 million tons of sulfuric acid (about $89 million), a by-product of the smelting process.

The tin-foil hat crowd alleges that fluorides used to fluoridate water supplies are a waste product of the phosphate fertilizer industry and aluminum manufacturing industries. There is a bit of truth in that claim. Fluorides used to fluoridate water supplies are indeed a by-product of the phosphate fertilizer industry, as are many other products in use today. The aluminum industry is a consumer of fluoride, not a producer. The fluoride from the phosphate fertilizer industry is a naturally occurring constituent of the phosphate rock and is recovered during the production of the phosphate fertilizer -- just as gold and silver are byproducts of the Bingham Canyon Copper Mine. But, using the logic of the anti-fluoride crowd, Bingham's gold and silver is waste and has no value.

Water fluoridation is the controlled addition of trace amounts of fluoride to a public water supply to reduce tooth decay. Although almost all major health and dental organizations support water fluoridation, or have found no association with adverse effects, efforts to introduce water fluoridation meet considerable opposition whenever it is proposed. Opponents have drawn on misinformation, ignorance, and distrust of experts and unease about medicine and science. Conspiracy theories involving fluoridation are common.

The point is that people with a loose grasp of facts and an utter absence of reasoning can get a story started which falls onto welcoming ears of other people with little ability and/or willingness to evaluate information or to confirm it. Give such people access to a medium such as the Internet, and falsehoods quickly become accepted as if it were science.

Even more troubling is the influence of educated people who should know better. But, they see money and fame in peddling pseudoscience to the uneducated and uneducable. These learned men and women morph into entertainers who, for personal gain, can exploit the mindless minds of their audiences to sell airtime ads and books. Such is the native soil of TV shows (Dr. Oz) and books (Dr. Oz) that pander to anyone lacking a critical mind.
For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;
And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. -- 2 Timothy 4:3-4
I have long contended that a well-educated person has two key but seemingly contradictory characteristics:
• A mind open to new information and
• Skepticism of new information.

In other words, I like to think that I have an open mind, but not so open that my brains fall out.

The Internet has a virtually unlimited wealth of information, much of it true, some of it well-intentioned errors, and far too much outright malicious lies. Some of the true stuff is actually worth reading!

Anyone can get worthless credentials such as a PhD from a California diploma mill, make up an impressive name such as "International Research Institute Pushing Scams-of-the-Day", put up a website with "research", and even organize as a 501(c)(3) non-profit educational organization to bilk the foolish out of their wished-for lottery winnings.

The result is an endless list of misinformation, scams, and hoaxes that the gullible among us fall for including:
• Global warming, global cooling, climate change, or whatever they're calling it today
• Taxpayer subsidies for things that nobody would buy in a free market such as electric and hybrid cars, solar/wind power, and mass transit
• Weight-loss and other health/nutrition fads
• Magical benefits of Coconut oil
• Hazards of Canola oil
• Discrimination against your neighbor's religious or political beliefs
911 conspiracies and World Trace Center collapse
FEMA camps
• The alleged hazards of GMO (genetically modified organisms) food
Crop circles, UFOs, and alien visits
Astrology, psychics, etc.
Perpetual motion machines
Conspiracies to suppress technologies
New World Order
Vaccines and autism
MSG (monosodium glutamate) triggering migraine headaches and other health problems
Sugar and hyperactivity in children
HAARP (High Frequency Active Auroral Research Program) used as a weather-controlling device that can trigger catastrophic events or to send mind-controlling radio waves to humans

Bottom line: Just because the information you find is what your "itching ears" want to hear, the source has an impressive name or title, and the voices in your head say it's true doesn't mean it's worth a bucket of warm spit. There is already enough evil in the world that we don't need to make up evils to worry about.
As long as man's beliefs, or any part of them, are based on error, he is not completely free, for the chains of error bind his mind. — Bruce R. McConkie
You are entitled to your own opinions, but you are not entitled to your own facts. — Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan
Error of opinion may be tolerated, where reason is left free to combat it. — Thomas Jefferson
Tell a lie loud enough and long enough and the people will believe it. — Adolf Hitler
Either you oppose a lie, or you become a liar. — Franklin Sanders
A lie left unchallenged becomes the truth. — Tom Gresham
Have an open mind, but not so open that your brains fall out.

Now, how do I get some of those waste products from the Bingham Canyon Copper Mine? I think I could get by on that kind of income.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Phil Robertson: Another Christian fired because of his religion

As much as I appreciate the refreshing "Duck Dynasty" program, I am done watching A&E. Why?

• A&E dishonestly edits bleeps into "Duck Dynasty" conversations to imply foul language when none exists.
• A&E demanded the "Duck Dynasty" family refrain from praying in the name of Jesus.
• A&E demanded that the family eliminate its references to God and guns. Phil Robertson said, "God and guns are part of our everyday lives [and] to remove either of them from the show is unacceptable. If we can't pray to God on the show, then we will not do the show."

Now, after a complaint by GLAAD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation) A&E has indefinitely dropped "Duck Dynasty" patriarch Phil Robertson because he has an opinion that isn't politically-correct (politically cleansed):
We are extremely disappointed to have read Phil Robertson's comments in GQ, which are based on his own personal beliefs and are not reflected in the series "Duck Dynasty". His personal views in no way reflect those of A&E Networks, who have always been strong supporters and champions of the LGBT community. The network has placed Phil under hiatus from filming indefinitely.
What were the egregious words that got the Duck Commander in such hot water? When asked what he viewed as sinful during his interview published in GQ magazine, he responded honestly (this was not an unsolicited anti-gay rant -- it was a response to a question):
Everything is blurred on what's right and what's wrong. Sin becomes fine. Start with homosexual behavior and just morph out from there. Bestiality, sleeping around with this woman and that woman and that woman and those men.
Paraphrasing the apostle Paul in 1 Corinthians 6:9-11 he added:
Don't be deceived. Neither the adulterers, the idolaters, the male prostitutes, the homosexual offenders, the greedy, the drunkards, the slanderers, the swindlers—they won't inherit the kingdom of God. Don't deceive yourself. It's not right.
GLADD shouldn't be complaining about Phil Robertson, they should be complaining about the apostle Paul!

I find it odd that Phil Robertson was cut for espousing views distasteful to thought police who very likely don't even watch, and could care less about, Duck Dynasty.

To a large extent, this argument is about truth. GLADD and others like them advocate arbitrary "relative truth" -- what's true for you isn't necessarily true for me. Robertson's argument is based on "absolute truth" -- time-tested truth that comes from God and which doesn't change.

A&E has a right to produce/drop whatever programming it chooses or is pressured into producing/dropping due to pressure from special interest groups. I choose to not be one of A&E's viewers because they caved to at least one professional outrage group.

Some, especially on the Left, think the A&E vs Robertson rhubarb is an argument about homosexuality. It's not. It's about the First Amendment: Freedom of religion and freedom of speech. Atheists demand and get their freedom of religion. Liberals demand and get their freedom of speech. Homosexuals get their TV/movie/news programming (freedom of the press and of speech). What about the rest of us?

Yeah, I know that the Bill of Rights imposes limits only on government -- not on the People or on organizations such as GLAAD. But such organizations love to use the power of government to silence anyone they disagree with.

Bobby Jindal, governor of Louisiana, home state of the Robertson clan chimed in:
Phil Robertson and his family are great citizens of the state of Louisiana. The politically correct crowd is tolerant of all viewpoints -- except those they disagree with. I don't agree with quite a bit of stuff I read in magazine interviews or see on TV. In fact, come to think of it, I find a good bit of it offensive. But I also acknowledge that this is a free country and everyone is entitled to express their views. In fact, I remember when TV networks believed in the First Amendment. It is a messed up situation when Miley Cyrus gets a laugh, and Phil Robertson gets suspended.
These same folks who gave us sensitivity training and the embracing of diversity need to learn a bit about sensitivity and diversity. The rest of us simply want everyone's rights protected -- not just one politically-correct (politically-cleansed) minority or another.

Here is what a former coworker of mine said about the A&E-Robertson kerfuffle (sorry about the immature language -- it's his and typical of those who argue primarily with emotion, not reason and facts):
"It is better to keep your mouth closed and let people think you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt." -- Mark Twain. You can pretty much say anything you want in this country. Just prepare yourself to be hammered for saying stupid redneck shit. People should keep all their racist, bigoted, homophobic, religious, bullshit to themselves. It helps no one and then they look like an asshole. You can't say homophobic, bigoted or racist shit then run to the bible to justify it.
Yup. "It is better to keep your mouth closed and let people think you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt." -- Mark Twain

Some seem to think that only "racist, bigoted, homophobic, religious" rednecks use the Bible to guide their lives; that they have no right to express their beliefs, when asked, in the land of the free and the home of the brave; and that the emotional application of profane, hateful, and derogatory labels to such people is therefore appropriate.

After his dismissal, Robertson said:
I myself am a product of the 60s; I centered my life around sex, drugs and rock and roll until I hit rock bottom and accepted Jesus as my Savior.
My mission today is to go forth and tell people about why I follow Christ and also what the bible teaches, and part of that teaching is that women and men are meant to be together.
However, I would never treat anyone with disrespect just because they are different from me. We are all created by the Almighty and like Him, I love all of humanity. We would all be better off if we loved God and loved each other.
That statement parallels the official stand made by my church:
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints affirms the centrality of doctrines relating to human sexuality and gender as well as the sanctity and significance of marriage as the union of a man and a woman. However, the Church firmly believes that all people are equally beloved children of God and deserve to be treated with love and respect.
Inasmuch as Robertson was removed from his own show because he expressed a sincere religious belief (away from the workplace, no less), he may have federal civil-rights case:
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII), which prohibits employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. SEC. 2000e-2. [Section 703]
(a) Employer practices
It shall be an unlawful employment practice for an employer -
(1) to fail or refuse to hire or to discharge any individual, or otherwise to discriminate against any individual with respect to his compensation, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment, because of such individual's race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.
Isn't it interesting that GLAAD chose what should be the most religious time of the year to complain about a nearly-year-old statement of a man's religious belief in absolute truth? I suspect they are quite proud of that "coincidence." They and every other anti-religion group won't rest until they impose their will on every individual, business, school, charitable organization, government entity, and even on God and His Church.
Conscience is the most sacred of all property. — James Madison
In the "good ol' days, we admired those who stood by their principles -- even if they differed from your own, But today, those who honor traditional marriage are not just "stupid rednecks" in the eyes of homosexual-marriage proponents, they are bigots and haters, the targets of the deepest bigotry and hate.

Homosexual-rights activists have this message: "If you don't agree with me, you hate me. Agree with me across the board or you are a hater. Submit to my viewpoint or you are a bigot." By using this attack, they don't need to win their arguments by intelligent discussion or rational debate. Instead, they can silence us by labeling opponents. It is the lowest form of policy debate, but in this case it has been frighteningly effective.

A lot's at stake here, and it isn't homosexual rights or the traditional family. If you don't understand or don't care what's in danger, you're a part of the problem.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Bring management of endangered species back to the states where it belongs

Senators Rand Paul of Kentuky, Mike Lee of Utah, and Dean Heller of Nevada have introduced Senate Bill 1731, entitled the "Endangered Species Management Self-Determination Act." A companion bill was also introduced in the House by Representative Mark Amodei of Nevada.

This bill would restrict the US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) from listing any new species under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) without the approval of the governors of any states in which that species resides and also require a joint resolution approving each listing by Congress.

The bill further requires that USFWS compensate landowners for the value of land deemed to have been reduced by the agency's enforcement of the ESA.

It would provide for delisting of species listed by Congressional joint resolution after five years. This is critical due to the intransigence of federal bureaucrats in delisting species that have recovered or that never truly threatened in the first place. (In the case of the Utah prairie dog, there has been absolutely no improvement in the welfare of that species in spite of over 40 years of federal management! Federal management is not working in spit of great expense to taxpayers and property owners. SB.1731 seeks to remedy that situation.)

In addition to giving governors veto power over listing of species that happen to occur in their states, the bill would also allow a governor to take over all management of a listed species as long as that governor determines that the species occurs only in the state. If a governor makes such a determination, the USFWS will be locked out of any management or monitoring of the species. This is essential because intrastate affairs are of no concern to the central government.

While SB.1731 doesn't go far enough to get the central government out of wildlife management -- a role it is not allowed under the US Constitution -- I urge the Whitehouse and Congress to aggressively work for the prompt implementation of this bill because it pushes the protection of wildlife back to the states where it belongs, imposes congressional oversight over federal bureaucrats, and it seeks to protect the property rights of Americans. This bill is 40 years overdue and must be passed.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

My thoughts on ADHD and other disorders of the brain and nervous system

I have been prescribed Ropinirole for Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS). This is in a class of psychotropic or psychoactive drugs which include dopamine agonists and dopamine reuptake inhibitors.

Especially note the typical and very frightening "precautions," "warnings," and "side effects" sections in the following notices to consumers for this class of drugs:
Ropinirole (Requip)
Pramipexole (Mirapex, Mirapexin, Sifrol)
These drugs are so dangerous, in the opinion of the National Institutes of Health, that I will not take it. The symptoms of RLS are far more acceptable.

Now, compare the "precautions," "warnings," and "side effects" sections for above RLS drugs with common drugs used to treat ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder):
Amphetamine (Adderall)
Dextroamphetamine (Dexedrine)
Methylphenidate (Ritalin)
You will note a troubling correlation between the mass shootings over the past several years and the the fact that most of the shooters were taking, or had stopped taking, these prescribed drugs. The warnings of violence as a side effect for these drugs and withdrawal therefrom is clearly based on tragic experience!

As much as 18% of America's children have been diagnosed with ADHD using a checklist of behaviors in the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual -- a book whose primary reason for existence is to enable mental health professionals to bill insurance companies). However, the DSM system fails to acknowledge the existence of temperament and how it differs. The current ADHD symptoms are not clearly distinguishable from normal behavior. There is no clear evidence that ADHD symptoms are related to medically-treatable brain malfunction.

Studies do not prove that ADHD is a disorder any more than they do with normal temperamental variations. Chemical testing and brain imaging techniques have not proven anything except that everyone is different. The associations demonstrated so far have been inconsistent and are not clear as to cause, association, or consequence of the symptoms. These studies generally lack appropriate controls, who must be the same as the subjects in every way except for the dysfunctional behavior. See:
Does ADHD Exist?
ADHD Is Over-Diagnosed
ADHD Mythbusters
The mortal human body (including the brain) is not perfect. Almost everyone has some level of imperfection in the brain due to genetics, injury, malnutrition, or bad luck. In most cases, those imperfections are never made apparent, are minor in their effect, or the person learns to ignore, suppress, or compensate for the imperfection. In a few cases, medication can be helpful or even necessary because the imperfection causes dangerous behavior.

But, there is no truly scientific evidence that ADHD is a real problem that any drug can or should fix. It seems to me that a good test of the validity of ADHD as a true condition is this: Put the child in front of a TV with age-appropriate programming. Can the child focus on the programming without being drugged? Almost invariably, the answer is yes. That shows that drugging is not needed to get the child to focus.

The bottom line is that parents and teachers simply want easily-managed children. If all the children behave exactly in the same compliant manner, it makes the jobs of parenting and teaching much more convenient. To answer that flawed expectation, the health care system has outlined a process in the DSM to label non-conforming individuals and drug them into conformity. Drugs seem to be the easy way out, but they are a dangerous cop-out. As one can see from the above links, the drugs they're using can be extremely dangerous and the long-term effects is unknown.

So, what is to be done about hard-to-manage children?

In my generation and before (before modern science invented ADHD and its purported "cure") we simply learned to behave ourselves. Being raised in traditional, intact families where Mom stays home to nurture the family certainly makes a difference for those children who don't fit the mold. Unfortunately, modern education theory is rooted in the industrial revolution of the late 1800s where schools are viewed as a factory which takes in standardized parts and assembles them into standardized products via standardized processes. Too many parents have the same expectation for their children. That is not an appropriate model for educating widely variable children of God. What really bothers me is when the state (school staff and child protective services) override the God-given rights, responsibilities, and authority of parents to drug, hospitalize, and confiscate children over this vaguely understood condition.
"True doctrine, understood, changes attitudes and behavior. The study of the doctrines of the gospel will improve behavior quicker than a study of behavior will improve behavior." — President Boyd K. Packer (Ensign, May 2004, p 79)
Nobody has a drug deficiency (although drugs sometimes might be necessary to control dangerous behaviors). But, we all need to learn better behavior as President Packer suggests. Children, like adults, simply need to learn how to channel their behaviors and attention appropriately. It's called self-discipline. The prophets outline what behavior is appropriate and how to get there.

Worthwhile activities (ie not TV or computer games) that a child enjoys and where he is only compared against self or an external, achievable standard (rather than against the performance of other people as happens with children is school or team sports) can be used as opportunities to learn how to focus attention. For interested children, marksmanship is an excellent example of an individualized activity where one can learn focus and self-discipline.
"Even the best psychiatrist is like a blindfolded auto mechanic poking around under your hood with a giant foam 'We're #1' finger." — Dennis Miller (One of the brightest men alive today who, I suspect, would be drugged into mediocrity for ADHD if he were a child today.)

"Of course, that's just my opinion, I could be wrong." — Dennis Miller

Friday, November 22, 2013

Harry Reid nukes Liberty

Until this week, the beauty of the filibuster was that it protected the voice of minority parties in the Senate.

The Democrats in the Senate have consistently used various Senate rules, includind the filibuster, or threat thereof, to block nominees of Republican presidents far more than the Republicans have used any tool whatsoever to block Democrat appointees. Yet, Senator Majority Leader Harry Reid cherry-picked statistics to dishonestly claim that only the Right exploits these tools to block appointees.

This week, Reid and the other Democrats in the Senate changed the age-old rule requiring a super majority to end a filibuster. With this week's vote, only a simple majority vote can end a filibuster. That makes it much easier for majority parties to get their agenda and their political appointees (including lifetime appointment for federal judges) past the Senate.

One must remember that Senate confirmation of all presidential nominees is mandated by the Constitution. Why would the Constitution mandate a confirmation process if the Senate simply rubber-stamps all nominees? The answer is found in Article 6 of the Constitution wherein senators and all other elected, appointed, and employed public officials are required to swear an oath to protect the Constitution from its enemies -- politicians, judges and other appointees, and bureaucrats who seek to undermine and destroy the Constitution and the individual Liberties it would protect if followed.

It appears to me that the Leftists in DC (Reid, Obama, Holder, etc.) understand that they may not always be able to overwhelm the nation with Marxist programs, anti-Constitution judges, and other anti-Liberty political appointees with the too-reliable help of give-em-what-they-want senators like Orrin Hatch and John McCain. Reid is once again telling Republicans that the Democrat thieves intend to win at all cost. He is reminding Republicans that Democrat politicians have never played fair in the game of politics and that they never will; that Democrat politician have always lied about their agenda; that they've lied about their past, and that their voters are often fictitious, ineligible, dead, vote multiple times, etc.

Republican politicians still are ignoring those messages. I expect that they always will. Republicans must continue to play fair. But thy must also play to win. That means they must learn to never compromise with evil on any any issue. So long as Republicans compromise with evil, they will fail to earn the respect of the voters.

The Left seems to think that time is short before the American voters finally pull themselves away from the mall and American Idol long enough to acknowledge what's going on in DC and state capitols around the Union. So, the political thugs on the Left are now using ever more brute force to push through their agenda and, most especially, anti-Liberty judges-for-life before the voters finally respond to the hundred-year-old wake-up call.

Unlike what those political thugs on the Left seem to think, I don't think the voters will wake up very soon. Few voters know the many significant differences between the big-government, immoral agenda of Democrat Party Platform and the individual-liberty, God-respecting agenda Republican Party Platform.

Most Americans think that they are free if the government still allows them get to the mall with politically-correct security rules, check their NSA-screened Facebook page, buy government-approved cars, send their kids to government schools, communicate in English, and get their various government benefits.
If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be. -- Thomas Jefferson
We need smarter voters.