Saturday, December 17, 2011

Is the Constitution in crisis?

The Constitution has been in crisis for well over 100 years -- under every President, Congress and Supreme Court. A few politicians and judges have had a hand in slowing the nullification of the Constitution; but nobody can stop it except informed and wise voters.

The founders wrote a Constitution that gives us an opportunity and the means for rebellion and change in government every two years. We call that opportunity an election. Every two years we can throw out the entire House of Representatives! But, we don't -- even though we all despise the work they're doing (or not doing). Every four years, we have the opportunity to change the President and his entire administration thereby profoundly changing the way bureaucrats treat our rights. But, we often don't -- even though we all despise the work they all are doing (or not doing). Every two to four years, each State has the opportunity to vote out a senator. In six years, we can purge the entire Senate! But, we don't -- even though we all despise the work they're doing (or not doing).

Our founders gave us the tools needed for a peaceful and orderly overthrow of a tyrannical government. Yet, the uninformed partners with the selfish among us to persistently elect and reelect the wrong people!

I shudder when I watch Jay Leno's "Jay-Walking" excursions wherein he explores how utterly ignorant many Americans are.

Congress has the lowest approval rating of any entity imaginable. Yet, we persistently reelect over 90% of the most corrupt, anti-Constitution, anti-liberty, big-government incumbents we all disapprove of! Many people call for term limits in an effort to get the government back under control. But, as another writer said, this is a cop-out. The fact that some politicians remain in office too long is no reason to also boot out the statesmen our nation needs. We voters have a profound moral obligation to elect and reelect only the best to public office. We are failing in that role.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Homosexual marriage, money, and morality

Williams Institute is a LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Trasngender) organization established to advance sexual orientation and gender identity law and public policy through rigorous, independent research and scholarship. It disseminates its stands to judges, legislators, policymakers, media and the public. Because it is an activist organization, it was never intend to be unbiased in its "research." As a national think tank at UCLA Law, the Williams Institute is largely funded by taxpayers.

It recently claimed that wedding arrangements and tourism by same-sex couples and their wedding guests added between $12 and $13 million to the Iowa economy over two years in 2009 and 2010. The study, released Wednesday, also reported that the increased spending on weddings likely added between $850,000 and $930,000 in tax revenue in that State during that two-year period. There reportedly were at least 2,099 same-sex weddings in the year following the decision to legalize marriage equality in April 2009. Of these couples, over half came from other states to wed in Iowa. The study estimates that out-of-state couples account for about $2.2 million of the spending.

The Institute's story did not disclose the methodology behind finding the numbers the reported.

Now, a little history:

Marriage is a formal relationship established by God -- not government. Religions and cultures of all kinds around the world have consistently established marriage as a bond between a man and a woman. In some cases, that religious bond has included multiple spouses of the opposite sex.

Relatively recently, the government got involved with marriage. This involvement has its roots in racism. Laws were passed requiring couples to obtain a marriage license prior to the marriage. The intent of these laws was to restrict intermarriage among races -- particularly Blacks with Whites. Marriage laws also establish age and other restrictions. By those racist laws government interjected itself into private family affairs to the point where it now tells parents how it can raise children and can confiscate children with no legal basis other than a rumor or lie.

Since it grabbed control of marriage away from churches and families, broken families have become the norm (beginning with California's introduction of no-fault divorce which makes it impossible for the spouse who wants to stay married to have a voice in whether the marriage is dissolved).

Then, along come activists for the homosexual agenda. Although homosexuals have always had the full right to marry a person of the opposite sex, they demanded a new right -- the right to marry a person of the same sex. Most States have laws against such relationships. In fact, some State constitutions clearly establish that marriage is only between a man and a woman. Many States refuse to recognize same-sex marriages performed in States with same-sex marriage.

Currently, a few States allow same-sex marriages: Massachusetts (thank you very much Mitt Romney), Connecticut, Iowa, New Hampshire, New York, and Vermont. Washington, DC also recognizes same-sex marriage. Generally, a majority of the People rejected the idea of same-sex marriage. Same-sex marriage in each of those three States came about only by judicial ruling -- against the will of the People.

How's that for democracy?

After the judicial rulings in the above-listed States, only the legislatures of Connecticut and Massachusetts changed their laws to comply with the rulings imposed by a handful of lawyers in black dresses. The remaining jurisdictions (Iowa, New Hampshire, New York, Vermont, and the District of Washington) have same-sex marriage imposed by judicial ruling.

Now, Williams Institute claims Iowa benefits financially from same-sex marriages performed in that State, but which likely are not valid in the State in which the couples live. These marriages are also not valid for federal purposes.

A question I have on all this is: What value or price do judges in Iowa place on democracy? Apparently, democracy in Iowa is worth something less than $6.5 million per year.

The root of all this is morality and truth. There are two types of truth: absolute truth and relative truth.

Absolute truth comes from natural law and from God. When God (or nature) reveals a truth, it does not vary. That truth applies equally to all of creation.

Relative truth is whatever a person says it is. What is true for one person may not be true for another.

Because of the influence of the aggressive activism of a tiny minority of mankind, God's absolute truth of marriage as between opposite sexes has morphed into a relative truth of marriage is whatever anyone wants for whatever reason or for no reason whatsoever.

I say that those who are sexually attracted to persons of the same-sex deserve all the respect due to any other son or daughter of God. However I reject their behavior when it violates God's counsel and commandments -- just as I reject heterosexual behavior which violates God's teachings. Both have need of repentance.

Activists in and out of government are imposing this corruption of absolute truth upon society with the force of law. Government is forcing those who believe homosexual behavior is immoral to accept that immoral behavior as if it were moral and wholesome. And, government is giving that behavior its stamp of approval at taxpayer expense. Government has no right or authority to redefine morality.

As mentioned above, marriage has been a family and/or religious rite for most of human history. Only relatively recently has one needed government permission to marry. It has done so for two primary reasons: social engineering (something politicians and bureaucrats love to do, but do horribly) and revenue.

I believe that marriage is one of many issues where government does not belong. Where government intrudes, it invariably makes things worse. Politicians and bureaucrats do a horrid job of defining morality.

Government must get out of the marriage business and restore it to families and religion where it historically worked just fine. As far as the government should be concerned, a marriage should be viewed as nothing more than a legally-binding private contract made between consenting adults -- not to regulate who people can marry. The only role government should have is to provide a mechanism whereby the marriage contract can be enforced and to protect the rights of the persons involved (ie property rights or to restrict marriage of children).

As long as government interjects itself into defining marriage, I defend the right of individuals and organizations such as churches (eg California's Prop 8) to voice their opinions on that definition. Ultimately, politicians and judges need to learn to respect the voice of the voters.

So, what's next for government-sanctioned marriage? How far will government go to redefine morality? Legalized polygyny? Legalized polyandry? Legalized marriage between children and adults? Legalized marriage between siblings? Legalized marriage between parents and their children? Legalized marriage between humans and animals? Legalized marriage between humans and trees or other inanimate objects? Preposterous, you say?

Just you wait and see. The horse is out of the barn. Without a moral and spiritual revival, it is too late to close the barn door on government-controlled marriage.

We need smarter and wiser voters.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Congress must approve bureaucratic regulations!

Federal regulation cost American businesses a shocking $1.75 trillion in 2008, more than individual and corporate income tax burdens combined. Those costs of doing business are passed on to consumers in higher prices for goods and services.

Clearly, something horribly amiss in the regulatory process.

On Wednesday, the House of Representatives is scheduled to vote on HR.10 / S.299, the REINS Act (Regulations From the Executive in Need of Scrutiny Act), which puts the brakes on costly federal regulation by directly holding our elected officials responsible for their actions.

The Constitution entrusts our elected representatives in Congress with legislative power, not unelected, unaccountable federal bureaucrats!

The REINS Act helps to correct this problem. Whenever an agency seeks to finalize a new "major" regulation (one with an economic impact of $100 million or more) Congress must first vote to approve it, and the President must sign it before it can take effect. While I believe all regulations must be specifically approved by elected representatives, HR.10 / S.299 is an important small step in the right direction.

Unfortunately, the REINS Act won’t be a silver bullet to stop every costly regulation, but it will ensure that when a major new regulation takes effect every citizen will know exactly who voted for it and will be able to hold them accountable.

If I were able to amend this legislation, lower the threshold from $100 million to $1 million. I would also include a requirement that all existing regulations with the same $100 million economic impact also go through the same congressional and executive scrutiny if not abolished within 180 days of enactment of HR.10 / S.299.

Congress must rein in excessive federal regulation beginning with the REINS Act. HR.10 / S.299 must become law immediately.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Caitlin Halligan may be unfit to be a judge

Caitlin Joan Halligan has been nominated by President Barack Obama to fill a federal judicial vacancy on the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit - the second highest court in the US. This makes this nomination especially sensitive.

All reports that I’ve seen indicate that Halligan possesses all the skills and knowledge to qualify her as a judge. However professional competence is only part of a judge’s job. Fidelity to the judicial oath of office -- defense of the Constitution -- is a key to determining whether a candidate is fit to be a judge.

Regarding previous presidential nominees, I have pointed out that it is essential that all federal nominees be examined closely to determine their loyalty to the US Constitution. This is especially true for the Supreme Court and for the DC Circuit. A judgeship on the DC Circuit is often a stepping-stone for appointment to the US Supreme Court.

It is extremely unfortunate that, since the virtual political assassination of Judge Robert Bork in 1987, presidents have typically avoided nominating judicial candidates who have written or ruled on controversial issues or high-profile cases. In other words, nominees have not been tested. Halligan is one of those unknowns.

In my research, I found one issue that concerns me: While solicitor general for the state of New York, Halligan initiated a lawsuit to hold gun manufacturers liable for crimes committed using illegally obtained guns. Halligan's scheme to annihilate the firearms industry with senseless lawsuits clearly shows she is willing to put her liberal ideology above the law and justice. But most importantly, she put her liberal ideology above the Constitution.

No judge must allow ideology influence his/her judgment. Instead, every judge must use the Constitution to guide his/her decisions. Not flawed judicial precedents. Not foreign law. Not ideology. Not politics. Halligan must be examined to determine whether she is capable of putting her personal and political ideals aside -- and clearly willing to do so without hesitation. The court is no place for political agendas. Politics must be confined to the legislative branch and the administration.

The authors of the US Constitution wisely provided for Senate confirmation of all presidential nominees. The purpose of this process is to protect the US Constitution and the liberties it guarantees from an activist and power-hungry administration and from activist judges. Therefore, Senators must make all decisions regarding presidential appointees based not only on the nominee's professional qualifications but more importantly on his/her respect for the Constitution.

On taking office, every Senator takes the following oath:
I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter: So help me God.
Senators do not take an oath to any political ideology, political party, party leader, king, or president. They take an oath to "support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic." In recent decades -- and especially during the current administration -- the Senate has done a horrible job in protecting the US Constitution because Senators make their decisions based on political ideology -- not the nominee's qualification and his/her potential effect on liberty.

Clearly, the Senate must expedite confirmation of presidential nominees who have a solid record of applying the original intent of the Constitution and halt consideration of all nominees from any administration who do not respect the rule of law or who are hostile to any individual liberty guaranteed by the US Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Compromise is giving in to the enemies of liberty. There must be no compromise!

Like all other federal nominations, I urge the Senate to reject the nomination of Caitlin Joan Halligan as US District Judge if there is any indication whatsoever that she will not be 100% true to the original intent of the US Constitution. If she cannot give a satisfactory explanation for her assault on gun manufacturers and how that could have affected affected my Second Amendment rights, I will consider a vote for her to be a vote against my gun rights.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Land of the freebies, home of the enslaved

"Everyone wants to live at the expense of the state. They forget that the state wants to live at the expense of everyone." — Frederic Bastiat

"Would you be willing to give up your favorite federal program if it meant never having to pay the income tax again?" — Harry Browne

We need smarter voters.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Compare national spending and debt with your own

Remember the outcry stemming from S&P's down grade of the US credit worthiness? Well, let's have a closer look (Note: These figures are several days old. The Numbers are worse today.):

Current status:
• US Tax revenue: $2,170,000,000,000
• Federal budget: $3,820,000,000,000
• New debt: $1,650,000,000,000
• National debt: $14,271,000,000,000
• Recent budget cut: $38,500,000,000
Now drop 8 zeros and pretend it's your household budget:
• Annual family income: $21,700
• Money the family spent: $38,200
• New debt on the credit card: $16,500
• Current outstanding balance on the credit card: $142,710
• Total budget cuts: $385
When it is broken down like this, it makes it easier to see how much trouble we are in!
Our huge public debt ultimately reflects our lack of individual restraint. But we can do better. — Lawrence W. Reed

Government is the only enterprise in the world which expands in size when its failures increase. — Janice Rogers Brown, Associate Justice, California Supreme Court

My reading of history convinces me that most bad government results from too much government. — Thomas Jefferson

The multiplication of public offices, increase of expense beyond income, growth and entailment of a public debt, are indications soliciting the employment of the pruning knife. — Thomas Jefferson, letter to Spencer Roane, 9 Mar 1821

Americans have been spoiled by a generation of extravagant federal spending made possible by an orgy of irresponsible borrowing. Now the party is over and the pain of long-lasting and unpopular austerity must come. — Zach Bogue, US Army veteran

Everyone wants to live at the expense of the state. They forget that the state wants to live at the expense of everyone. — Frederic Bastiat

The budget should be balanced; the treasury should be refilled; public debt should be reduced; and the arrogance of public officials should be controlled. — Cicero (106-43 BC)

People look at me and say, "What are you talking about, Joe? You're telling me we've got to go spend money to keep from going bankrupt?" The answer is, "Yes, I'm telling ya." - Joe Biden, US Vice President and economic idiot (No wonder we're in such trouble!)

It's the Democrats whose position is that the only problem in Washington, D.C., is the peasants aren't sending enough cash in for the king to spend. — Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform

We have allowed our nation to be over-taxed, over-regulated, and overrun by bureaucrats. The founders would be ashamed of us for what we are putting up with. - Dr. Ron Paul, Congressman

Would you be willing to give up your favorite federal program if it meant never having to pay the income tax again? — Harry Browne
We need smarter voters.

Check out a more detailed version of the US Debt Clock.

Glenn Beck interview with Michelle Bachmann

Monday, November 28, 2011

The wealth gap

I'm puzzled by all this talk about the wealth gap.

On one end of the spectrum, we have creative people who produce new products and services that people are willing to pay for, people who are willing to invest their own time and money to get those products and services into the market, people who invest in themselves by getting a good education, and leaders who can put all that together to create wealth.

On the other end of the spectrum, we have people whose knowledge, skill, and motivation are saturated by the act of opening a can of beer or filling out an application for public assistance.

Is there a gap? Yup. A big one. But the gap isn't simply wealth.

Most of us are somewhere between. We who are in between don't have what it takes (sometimes it includes luck) to be in the upper crust, but we're far too motivated to be on the bottom. We get along fine, so long as the government stays out of our lives and doesn't foul up the economy.

For some bizarre reason, there are those (represented by the likes of "Occupy Wall Street" selfish, childish protesters) who feel that this spectrum of wealth is unfair, that wealth must be taken by force from those who have earned it and "redistributed" to those with no motivation or talent.

I have earned my place in the economy. I have two college degrees. I have considerable technical training in my field of employment. I have a good job. But, I have not done what it takes (including being lucky) to rise to the top as did Bill Gates or Warren Buffet. Financially, I've had some tough times, but with the support and sacrifices of my wife, I got through them. In the end, I have what I've earned and I'm satisfied with that.

As a follower of Jesus, I give at as much time and money to charity that I feel I should and can -- far more than the national average -- and even more than typical liberals and Democrats. I am deeply annoyed by those who give less than I do, yet demand that the government force me to give more -- especially to support those who are societal parasites -- not truly needy.

So, somebody, please tell me why is the so-called wealth gap unfair?

What is unfair is that the current tax code is designed more to manipulate the behavior of Americans than to raise money to run the government.

What is really unfair is the claim that the wealthy are not paying their fair share in taxes when half of American households pay no income taxes at all! These people have no skin in the game when it comes to taxation. They have everything to gain in voting for more taxes on the other half to pay for their own government handouts.

More than a wealth gap, what we have is a morality and character gap. Half of this nation has no morals or sound character. Fix that, and the wealth gap will shrink significantly.

Monday, November 21, 2011

First families and Secret Service secrets

I've heard many stories over the years from coworkers who flew Air Force One, coming into regular contact with the first families. Wild Bill for America confirms how the presidents and their wives treated the military and law enforcement.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Another demand for federal intrusion

Experience should teach us to be most on our guard to protect liberty when the government’s purposes are beneficial… the greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well meaning but without understanding. — Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis
At Penn State University, Jerry Sandusky, a former assistant to longtime football coach Joe Paterno, has been indicted with 40 charges related to the child sex abuse of eight boys over 15 years. One of the victims was as young as 7. Many of the alleged offenses took place on the Penn State campus. Paterno and University President Graham Spanier were fired because trustees felt they did not do enough to alert law enforcement authorities after an alleged assault by Sandusky in March 2002.

Now enters a courageous Utah woman named Elizabeth Smart. As a 14-year-old girl, Miss Smart was the victim of kidnapping and months of child rape. She was finally rescued and appears to have gone on to live a remarkably healthy life, although I suspect she still suffers deeply from her ordeal.

Today, in response to the Penn State scandal, Miss Smart called for the president of the United States to declare a national emergency to rescue children who are victims of sexual abuse and exploitation.

There is no question that those who abuse children -- especially sexually -- deserve harsh penalties. But, I disagree with Miss Smart that the President or anyone else in the central government has a roll in this issue.

The US Constitution gives authority to the central government to deal only a couple of crimes. Child or sex abuse is not among them. The Tenth Amendment clearly states that all powers and rights not specifically delegated to the central government are retained by the States and the People.

If we, the People, expect to ever regain control of the central government, we all must stop demanding Congress and the President fix every problem for us.

I admire Miss Smart's strength after the horrible crime she suffers from. Instead of asking the President declare a national emergency (which only enables the central government to grab even more unconstitutional power), I suggest she lead a campaign to address the issue with state legislatures and governors nationwide. That is the appropriate level to address this sort of crime.

Be very careful what you wish for, Miss Smart. You might get it.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Congress vs Gun Rights

"A person’s rights are best secured by conceding the very same rights to every other person under the same jurisdiction." — Balint Vazsonyi

"For something to truly be considered a right, it must apply to every member of society equally." — Timothy B. Lewis of the Constitutional Freedom Foundation

The Domestic Violence Offender Gun Ban, commonly referred to as the "Lautenberg Amendment" to the Gun Control Act of 1968) prohibits possession of a firearm or ammunition by persons convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence or who are under a restraining order for domestic abuse. This legislation was passed in 1996 by an overwhelming majority of Congress, including a self-described defender of the Constitution named Orin Hatch.

Of course, I heartily condemn domestic violence and I support appropriate punishment for those who are convicted of such a cowardly crime.

However, I object to this law for the following reasons:
▪ Most of the powers of Congress are listed in Article 1, Section 8 of the US Constitution. The 10th Amendment clearly warns that the central government has no authority beyond what is specifically delegated to it by the Constitution. Therefore, the central government has absolutely no authority or right to stick its nose into the vast majority of criminal acts – especially domestic violence. Nearly all crimes are matters of State or local law – never national!
▪ The central government has absolutely no authority or right to distort and abuse the commerce clause in order to regulate who can possess arms.
▪ The central government has absolutely no authority or right to distort and abuse the commerce clause in order to regulate the purchase of arms or ammunition by any person from any seller within their own State. That clearly is a local or intrastate transaction -- not an interstate transaction!
▪ The "Lautenberg Amendment" violates Article 1, Section 9 of the US Constitution ("No Bill of Attainder or ex post facto Law shall be passed.") in that it retroactively punishes non-felons for relatively minor crimes committed prior to enactment of the Lautenberg bill.
▪ Congress is specifically restricted from regulating the use and ownership of arms by the Second Amendment. There is absolutely no loophole allowing Congress to restrict arms for those convicted of domestic violence or any other crime or otherwise regulate arms in any way.
▪ The prohibition against the free exercise of a constitutionally-enumerated right is an extreme (cruel and unusual) punishment for a misdemeanor. If a crime is so severe as to warrant the termination or suspension of a constitutionally enumerated right, it certainly should be severe enough to warrant a felony conviction.
▪ An assault is an assault. To make the punishment more severe simply because the victim is a family member (or a person of another race -- so-called hate crime) is, again, cruel and unusual.
▪ Parents have been convicted for simply spanking their own children. Americans have even been convicted for intrafamily verbal confrontations with no physical contact!
▪ The "Lautenberg Amendment" potentially affects every soldier, police officer or any other person who has, or will have, a conviction of domestic violence.

The "Lautenberg Amendment" is only a few words of many thousands of pages of federal law, regulation, and policy which are outside the authority given to the central government through the Constitution.

As an elected official of the United States, every member of Congress took an oath to " and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same....." By voting for the Lautenberg Amendment (and most other legislation) nearly every member of the Senate violated their own oath – including a self-described defender of the Constitution from Utah named Orin Hatch.

The right to arms of all non-felons must be restored by immediately repealing the Lautenberg Amendment. This is bad law!

Congress must immediately reverse this egregious Congressional crime against the people of the United States!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Saving children is extreme and radical!

Some of the States are trying to enact constitutional amendments that say human life begins at conception

Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL), chair of the Democratic National Committee, said Thursday that this effort is "an extreme and radical step."

Apparently, in her tiny little mind, 42 million induced abortions per year (most of which are performed because the pregnancy is merely inconvenient for one or both of the parents) is not "extreme and radical." She apparently believes that ending the practice of legalized child sacrifice on the altar of hedonistic secularism is not "extreme and radical."

If secularists like Debbie Wasserman Schultz can believe that life on Earth started with a single cell, why won't they believe that each human life starts with the union of two cells in the womb? But, they won't. In fact, because they don't respect life, Debbie Wasserman Schultz and her fellow abortion advocates have endorsed and enabled more human death than Attila the Hun, Genghis Khan, Hitler, Lenin, Mao, Pol Pot, and Stalin combined!

A mother's womb should be the safest possible place for a child of God. Sadly, due to people like Debbie Wasserman Schultz, it is not. Can there possibly be anything more "extreme and radical" than killing the most innocent among us -- an unborn child, fresh from heaven -- to atone for the behavior of his or her parents?
A person's a person, no matter how small! (Dr. Seuss, Horton Hears a Who)
Is there not any behavior that embarrasses or shames us Americans anymore?

Some argue that keeping induced abortion available and legal saves the lives of many pregnant women. But, consider this: Abortion is 100% fatal for the child regardless of whether the abortion is legal!

I belive in a woman's (and a man's) right to chose. I also belive she (and he) must accept and live with the concequences of her (his) choices. After making a choice that gives them an unwanted result, they do not have a right to chose the result of their bad choice. Surely, consenting adults understand that a natural consequence of sexual relations is pregancy. Those who are not willing to live with that consquence have a moral obligation to chose and behave in a way that eliminates all posibility of pregancy. Those who chose to behave in a way that results in pregnancy must live with that choice -- not destroy the result of that choice. Abortion is most often nothing more a safety net for irresponsible behavior. We no longer teach or advocate responsible behavior.

There's nothing extreme or radical about efforts to protect unborn children. The instant a sperm fertilizes an ovum, that cell has a different and unique genetic make-up from any of the mother's tissues (or the father's) making it a different and unique and separate individual person from the mother. It is not, as abortion advocates claim, merely a lump of tissue. A woman's time to make the choice is before conception, not after she has created this new life!

I'm reminded of a story I heard many years ago. An Indian boy asked his grandfather, the old tribal chief, "What is the conscience?" The old chief replied, "The conscience is a three-cornered stone inside the heart. Every time you do something wrong, that stone turns and makes the heart hurt. If you do lots of bad things, you eventually wear off the rough corners of that stone and you no longer feel pain in your heart for doing wrong."

That is what we have done in America. We have destroyed our own consciences with regard to nearly every moral issue. Our nation is filled with men and women who
...walk in the vanity of their mind, having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart: who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness. (Ephesians 4:17-19)
Debbie Wasserman Schultz is just one more piece of evidence that poltics today is not a struggle between Democrats or Republicans or between liberals and conservatives. Politics today is a struggle between good and evil.

There must never be a compromise with evil. A compromise with evil only moves the people farther in the direction of evil and away from the good. Very few of the "good" politicans and voters understand or care about that very simple truth.

We have the government we deserve. We need smarter and wiser voters.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Obama buys votes with a student loan scam

Obamao's student loan fraud: He thinks he can buy the votes of college students at a mere $4 to $8 per month.

He's probably right. After all, many of today's students and graduates are incapable of rationally processing information because they are getting worthless degrees in bitterness and victimhood (ie "Liberal" Arts such as Women's Studies, Social Inequality Studies, Black Studies, Gender Confusion Studies, Native American Studies, Diversity Studies, Sensitivity Studies, and other Pitty-Me Studies.)

See "Occupy Wall Street" for an assembly of these people with an unemployable education.

While I would expect Obamao to exploit his "useful idiot" support base, his scheme is a slap in the face of those who have paid or are paying their student loans as contracted. It is a slap in the face of those who managed to work their way through college (as their parents did), without debt. Obamao is implying that the responsible students are fools.

If Obamao really wants to fix the problem he needs to work with Congress to get the central government out of education:
• The skyrocketing cost of education parallels the introduction and growth of the US Department of Education.
• The soaring cost of education is fueled by easy student loans. Students and parents perceive borrowed money as free money and fail to wisely shop for the best value in education. Colleges exploit this distortion of the free market knowing students and parents don't look at the total debt that will be accumulated.
• The plummeting quality of education began with the introduction and growth of the US Department of Education.
• The central government has no constitutional authority to intrude into education.

The 53 percent of taxpaying Americans (which includes college graduates with real degrees) do not owe college students anything. Obamao has no right or legitimate authority to write a check at the expense of those hard-working 53%. Instead, today's college students and graduates owe it to themselves and to society to grow up! This isn't an economic problem. It's cultural.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Immunization Paranoia

Ask anyone who has survived travel to third-world countries (as I have - 125 nations so far) and especially those who survived places like Hanoi Hilton. We will tell you that immunization has saved our lives. A trace of mercury in some vaccines is nothing compared to the diseases we're exposed to in under-immunized nations or those which our unimmunized ancestors faced.

In my nearly 40 years of global travel, I have always felt safe in coming home to my children (and now my grandchildren) knowing I'm not a vector for something that could kill them and, if I am, they are immunized against whatever I'm most likely to be carrying.

Today, I was asked, "If the vaccinations work, why would the vaccinated fear an unvaccinated me?"

Because I am vaccinated, I have no fear of disease in places like Africa and South Asia. I therefore am certainly not afraid of Americans who aren't vaccinated. My lack of fear is a natural consequence and benefit of my choice (and that of my parents) to accept vaccination.

I oppose mandatory vaccination of the general civilian population. I support the right of parents to deny vaccinations for their children. But, rights imply responsibilities and choices imply consequences. Like me and my choice, the unvaccinated and their parents also must accept the natural consequences of their choice. Such consequences include disease and, if the Public Health Service announces incidences of a potentially dangerous communicable disease, self-imposed family quarantine -- even if not showing symptoms of illness.

We, who are vaccinated, don't fear you. But, consider this: One out of 20 children with measles -- a very common disease during my childhood -- gets pneumonia. For every 1,000 children who get the disease, one or two will die from it. (The side-effects of a measles vaccination are insignificant by comparison.) The unvaccinated have a moral obligation to not be a potential vector of such dangerous illnesses to infect others who are unvaccinated. And, the unvaccinated would certainly would be wise to fear each other!

Those who chose to not immunize their children must acknowledge and appreciate that their unimmunized children have significant protection from epidemics that never happen because most other parents immunize theirs.

My generation was the last to see an epidemic in America. I had classmates who were crippled by polio. That disease killed an uncle. I remember my mother taking us to Doctor Bunderson to get shot over 50 years ago. Today, I wonder whether those primitive-by-today's-standards shots are a factor in the inconvenient allergies and arthritis I have today in my 60s. But I do know that whatever inconveniences I suffer today have been a small price to pay to avoid a wheelchair or death.

History shows that lack of immunization is an excellent form of population control.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

S.1691/HR.58, the Firearms Interstate Commerce Reform Act

The nation's gun laws are outdated and overly restrictive. To a large extent, they violate one of the fundamental rights protected by the US Constitution.

Senators Mark Begich (D-Alaska) and Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) have introduced S.1691, the Firearms Interstate Commerce Reform Act. A companion bill, HR.58 is in the House. The legislation allows for the interstate sale of firearms and removes several antiquated and unnecessary restrictions imposed on interstate firearms transactions.
"Current laws restricting interstate commerce of firearms not only lag behind common sense and new technology, they are unfair and burdensome," Sen. Begich said. "This legislation cleans up decades-old laws that are unnecessarily restricting the rights of Alaskans and other Americans to purchase and sell firearms."

"Utahns and Americans everywhere have a right to bear arms, and this legislation ensures that onerous and outdated restrictions on everyone’s Second Amendment rights are no longer in place," Sen. Hatch said. "By removing these restrictions, we can ensure that the constitutional freedoms we seek to protect remain intact."

"The National Instant Criminal Background Check System has made many restrictions enacted in 1968 obsolete. It’s time to bring the law into the 21st century. This important legislation will modernize and streamline interstate firearms transactions. The NRA and gun owners across the nation thank Senators Hatch and Begich for their leadership on this issue," said Chris W. Cox, executive director of the NRA Institute for Legislative Action.
The Firearms Interstate Commerce Reform Act removes a number of restrictions from the Gun Control Act of 1968, which only allowed licensed dealers to sell rifles and shot guns to residents of a different state under a lengthy series of conditions. The restrictions were supposed to prevent buyers from evading “background checks” available at the time, which were mainly carried out through state laws requiring local police chiefs to issue firearms permits.

However, since 1998, all people buying firearms from dealers in the US have been subject to computerized background checks under the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS); a system much more sophisticated and advanced than what was available in 1968. As a result, the complex system of laws currently restricting the interstate commerce of firearms is outdated.

The irony of current law is that it never did anything to control the behavior of criminals who, by definition, don’t obey the law! It only makes life harder for responsible Americans.

Among other features, S.1691/HR.58 would restore the right of individuals to buy handguns, as well as rifles or shotguns, from licensed dealers in another state, subject to the background check requirement. The buyer and dealer would still have to meet in person and comply with the laws of both states.

S.1691/HR.58 is a small, long overdue step toward restoring the rights of law-abiding Americans with regard to firearm purchases. Congress and the acting president must ensure that it becomes law immediately.

HR.2349, The Veterans' Second Amendment Protection Act

Federal law establishes several categories of persons who are restricted from possessing firearms and ammunition. Theoretically, the purpose of this legislation is to keep guns out of the hands of irresponsible persons. It is obvious that persons with criminal intent will obtain and use a gun regardless of the law. The true result of the law is that it makes gun ownership and use more difficult for responsible persons.

Among the categories of restricted persons is for those who have been adjudicated mentally incompetent. Congress wanted to ensure that rights are protected through due process of law and that only after appropriate evidence is presented and a judge is satisfied that an individual is incapable of making appropriate decisions regarding the use of a firearm should his rights be forfeited.

The Veterans Administration (VA) has an egregious policy of submitting names of veterans to the FBI for inclusion in the NICS (National Instant Criminal Background Check System) firearms purchaser background check database when this reporting is unjustified and without due process. For example, the VA has been submitting the names of veterans who have a fiduciary appointed to manage their financial affairs as "mental defectives" who are then permanently prohibited from possessing or having access to firearms and ammunition.

The VA’s disgraceful practice is a purely bureaucratic decision – not a judicial one as required by the law! It does nothing to protect the veteran’s rights. It only punishes honorable men and women whose only crime was to volunteer to serve their country. It is a shameful assault on the veteran as well as on the intent of Congress.

It is not uncommon for a veteran with minor memory issues or problems such as compulsive buying or gambling to have themselves declared mentally incompetent to manage their own affairs and turn over control of their financial affairs to a spouse or relative to manage for them. Even if such an arrangement and diagnoses is temporary -- such as in the case of a severely wounded veteran undergoing long-term rehabilitation or comatose patients -- once the name is submitted to NICS, it is virtually impossible for them to ever regain right to arms.

The VA’s hostile policy has cause irreparable and unjustified harm to America’s war veterans. It must be stopped. The damage must be reversed immediately.

Appropriate legislation has been languishing in both houses of Congress for several years in spite of bi-partisan efforts to get it moving. Congress, therefore, is at least as culpable as are the nameless VA bureaucrats.

Last week, the House passed HR.2349 which contains language which is a small step toward repairing this assault on our veterans. The Veterans' Second Amendment Protection Act specifies that only veterans who have been adjudicated to be a danger to themselves or others are to be submitted for inclusion in the NICS database. This simple adjustment could restore firearms rights to as many as 100,000 veterans who have had their names unreasonably submitted to NICS.

This important reform is long overdue. I urge Congress and the acting president to aggressively work for immediate passage of HR.2349 with the Veterans' Second Amendment Protection language intact.

Friday, October 21, 2011

The National Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act of 2011

HR.822, the "National Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act of 2011" is a small but long-overdue step toward the restoration of the Constitutional right of Americans to self-defense by enabling concealed firearm permit holders to exercise their right to self-defense while traveling outside their home states.

Just a few years ago, the right of responsible Americans to carry a concealed firearm was all but lost due to decades of anti-liberty legislation and court rulings. Of course, not one of those laws affected the behavior of criminals. Today, forty-nine states have laws restoring, to some extent, the right of responsible adults to carry the best means of defense against those criminals – a gun.

Statistics from this restoration of the right to carry a concealed firearm show that civilians carrying guns tend to be more responsible in the use of their guns than law enforcement. The portion of licensed civilians who violate the law is statistically insignificant.

FBI data shows that states with right-to-carry laws have significantly lower violent crime rates. The seven states with the lowest violent crime rates are right-to-carry states.

Other statistics indicate that permit-holders from States with little or no training requirements are just as safe and conscientious as permit-holders from States with severe training and screening requirements. In fact, there is a strong movement to reduce training requirements and even permits altogether because legislatures are learning that training and permit mandates don't really matter. Besides, the people they should really be focusing on -- criminals -- don't bother with permits.

So, the claim that some States make that nobody else's permit is good enough is not valid. The bottom line is that those states most likely reject the permits of other States primarily because they lose revenue from reduced sales of their own permit -- not because permits from other States are somehow unsafe.

There is no rational justification for one State refusing to recognize the permits of another. This is a willful violation of the Second Amendment rights of visitors from other States. It must be stopped. HR.822 is intended to do just that.

HR.822 recognizes the significant impact of landmark Supreme Court cases which found that the Second Amendment protects a fundamental individual right to keep and bear arms and that the protections of the Second Amendment extend to infringements under state law.

HR.822 would establish interstate recognition of lawfully issued carry permits, just as they recognize driver's licenses and carry permits held by armored car guards.

HR.822 will not create a federal licensing or registration system; establish a minimum federal standard for the carry permit; involve the federal bureaucracy in setting standards for carry permit; or destroy permitless carry systems such as those in Arizona, Alaska, Vermont and Wyoming.

I am unalterably opposed to the central government telling the States what they must and must not do except where absolutely necessary to enforce the US Constitution. Gun rights is clearly one of those fundamental Constitutional issues.

I therefore urge every congressman and the acting president to aggressively fight for immediate and overwhelming enactment of this legislation.

Sunday, October 16, 2011


Look at the camels first and then read the message below.

This is a picture taken from directly above these camels in the desert at sunset. When you look closely, you can see that the camels are the little white lines in the picture. The black images you see are just the shadows!

Sometimes, our "problems" seem to be as big as the shadows; but they are relatively small.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Diversity education

I enjoyed a recent Cowboy Libertarian commentary on so-called "diversity" education (women's studies, gay-lesbian-transgender studies, ethnic studies, etc.) In his broadcast, he wondered about the utility of such an education.

I feel it necessary to point out that there is indeed a huge market for graduates of "diversity" education. Graduates go to work for the government. They can't find work anywhere else. But, the government has lots of influential positions for them. Government creates more such positions all the time.

College-level diversity programs are designed to prepare people to destroy traditional American and Christian values. They can best do so as government bureaucrats and politicians.

That is a key reason why the government -- all levels of government -- is so screwed up.

As the Cowboy Libertarian, Pat Dorinson, says, voters need to educate themselves and stand up to call a stop this madness in our colleges and universities. Ban the use of taxpayer money to fund "diversity" education!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Bigoted "Christians"

I have long suspected that key people at AFA (American Family Association) as well as several other high-profile evangelical Christian individuals and organizations (eg Robert Jeffress of the First Baptist Church of Dallas) harbor and foster profound ignorance regarding Mormons (including Mitt Romney) and their devotion to Jesus. AFA's Bryan Fischer has confirmed my suspicions regarding bigotry at AFA.

It is true that Mormon understanding of the character and person of God the Father and His son, Jesus, differs from the mainstream Christian view which was developed by a committee (Council of Nicaea) assembled by a pagan emperor (Constantine). However, Mormons do believe in our Heavenly Father, His Son, Jesus Christ, and in the Holy Spirit and that they are separate persons (Acts 7:55, Matthew 3:17, John 20:21) who are one -- united -- in purpose (John 10:30). Mormons devoutly accept Jesus as their Savior. Mormons claim that their understanding comes from Scripture and divine revelation -- not from a committee.

It is perfectly acceptable and prudent to challenge candidates such as Romney on issues and character, as do many Mormons. But, Mr. Fischer should really be ashamed of his ignorance, bigotry, and intolerance regarding those who are not of his own narrow-minded faith.

Non-Mormons who would vote against Romney because he is Mormon are just as wrong-headed as Mormons who would vote for Romney because he is Mormon. They are just as wrong as blacks who voted for Obamao because he is half-black and non-blacks who voted against him because he is only half-white.

Study what the Constitution says about a religious test for political office (Article VI, paragraph 3). You see, one need not be any brand of Christian to hold office in the United States. One need not even be Christian at all! In fact, one could be Moslem or even Atheist!

Study Romney's stand and history on issues important to you. Study his character. These are the proper measures of a political candidate.

I have long supported AFA because its efforts on certain issues parallel my own concerns. Due to Mr. Fischer's bigoted remarks regarding Mormons and the First Amendment, I can no longer support that organization.

Nevertheless, I support AFA's right to say what ever it chooses so long as it is not slanderous or dishonest -- the First Amendment even protects AFA bigots. AFA will have to do so without my support.

Search Engine Submission - AddMe

Friday, October 7, 2011

Capitalist pig

Over the past several days, selfish and deluded young Marxists have been emulating their deluded old hippie parents of the '60s by protesting success.

What these people fail to understand is that the successful people they disdain create jobs for millions.

What these people fail to understand is that the corruption in corporate boardrooms is in compliance with, and fostered by, the egregious regulations created by Marxists in Congress.

Toward Congress -- and the Marxists they elected -- is where they should be directing their anger. They also should be marching outside the White House in protest of Obama's failed and destructive policies.

If it weren't for competitors like Steve Jobs, Bill gates would probably still be selling MS-DOS and personal computers would still be running on 8088 processors, 64 kB of RAM and a single 5.25-inch floppy drive.

Steve Jobs made life better for all of us -- even those of who have never owned one of his products.

That is the beauty of a free market and capitalism.

Except for politicians and other thieves, in a free market, nobody can get rich unless they provide a product or service that people want and need at a price they are willing to pay.

If the protesting anti-capitalist punks had their way, we'd all still be counting on our fingers to compute.

Now, guess which protester in the cartoon below represents the 53% of Americans who pay taxes and which protester represents the 47% of Americans who are parasites.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Rush on baseline budgeting -- the biggest scam in DC

What we need is reverse baseline budgeting: The budget baseline for all government programs and agencies must decline by at least 10% per year until they are completely phased out -- unless those programs and agencies are specifically and clearly authorized by the US Constitution.

Monday, September 26, 2011

You say you want a revolution

I am amazed at the portion of people -- of all political persuasions -- who are disgusted by government. Yet, they keep sending the same riff raff back to congress, the state legislature, or city hall. After all, the guy who represents me is okay; it's all the others who are bums.

I am amazed at the number of gun owners who say, "they'll have to pry my gun from my cold dead hands" and who are prepared to bury their guns in the event of increased gun control including registration and confiscation. (At that point, haven't they effectively lost their guns anyway?)

I am amazed at the portion of people who say they are willing to join a civil war to throw off a tyrannical government. They are only waiting for the signal.

Then there are those who are resigned to fate or prophecy and believe there is no point in even talking about resistance to the inevitable. They fail to understand that God wants us to make good decisions -- not to bring to pass terrible predictions.

None of these people understand that the Constitution gives us the power of revolution. Every two years, we can replace the entire House of Representatives and a third of the Senate. Every four years, we can throw out the President and his entire administration. In six years, we can have an entirely new government! If that's not revolution, what is? We can foment the same revolution at the state and local levels. We don't.

We need voters who are willing to put aside selfish interests to vote for self-reliance and liberty. We desperately need voters who know at least as much about issues and candidates as they do about Amazing Race American Idol, Survivor, and Dancing with the Stars.

Anyone who isn't part of the revolution is part of the problem.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

The high cost of "renewable" energy

Robert J. Michaels, PhD is a professor of economics at California State University, Fullerton, and an adjunct scholar at the Cato Institute. He is also a senior fellow at the Institute for Energy Research.

On 22 Sep 2011, Dr. Michaels testified to Congress regarding the cost of so-called "renewable" energy. The statistics he quotes are astounding.

For example, here is the cost to the taxpayer of federal subsidies for various sources of energy:

Note that the solar bar is not to scale. Imagine how high is would be, compared to the others energy sources, if it were drawn to scale!

Isn't it interesting that when Obamao and other "green" advocates tout green technologies, they never talk about the true cost?

Why doesn't the news media ask hard and meaningful questions about cost and subsidies when they publish "news" articles about alternative energy? Is it ignorance, laziness, collusion, or all three?

What kind of voter, when he at last has some facts, would vote for politicians that advocate such nonsense?

It's incomprehensible that liberals in government love to champion green energy projects as the future of energy production even though, to an educated mind, most are only viable with billions in government subsidies.

There is a reason that private investors have not flocked to alternative energy: The technology has not reached a point where it makes economic sense. Almost nobody is willing to spend his own money on alternative energy without substantial money extracted by government force from the pockets of his neighbors!

Congress must immediately stop subsidizing anything especially "green" anything. In general, products and services are best regulated by a free market. When bureaucrats, politicians, and other central planners try to push technologies into the market, they invariably do so inefficiently and at a much higher cost than necessary.
It's both logically and historically fallacious to conclude that, because something is desirable, government should subsidize it. -- Don Boudreaux
People who favor these "green" scams don't seem to care about science, don't seem to understand economics, won't do the math, and enjoy having the government force other people to pay their bills for them. Few politicians have the sense to take the time to study the issue before committing taxpayer money to these money-pits. It is time for politicians, journalists, environmentalists, and voters to learn something about science and economics and muster the courage to say no!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Black hole

Redistricting time

Here in Cedar City, we have no voice in who represents us in Congress. We are always outvoted by voters in Salt Lake. So, we in southwest Utah have a congressman who votes with Pelosi 93% of the time. I can't see how such a congressman represents Utah, let alone southwest Utah. But, the big-city voters of Salt Lake do that to us.

I don't know that a rural vs urban argument in districting is valid. There is something else going on.

Most of us who live outside Utah's big cities still live in cities, albeit smaller ones. The same can be said of all states. I don't live on a farm. Nobody in my family lives on a farm. Other than needing farm products to live (food, clothing), I am no more or less affected by "rural" issues than is a denizen of Salt Lake. We who don't live in big cities share the same issues such as roads, crime, schools, recreation, high taxes, over-regulation, commerce, immigration, taxes, national defense, civil rights, clean water and air, etc.

Everyone has their differing ideas on how each of those various issues should be solved and who should do it. Differences in "how" and "who" are shown by the colors red and blue on election maps. Since nearly all of us live in cities, there must something other than living in cities per se going on that causes big cities to be red and almost everywhere else to be blue on the election map -- even in Kalifornia.

I think the root of that difference is values. Big cities tend to attract those who are dependent on government because big cities have the government offices that provide support for the dependent. Big cities have the government offices (bureaucrats also vote) that provide government services to the dependent. That concentrates society’s parasites and bureaucrats in the big cities. Both groups naturally vote to perpetuate their gravy train. That turns the big-city map red. It disenfranchises those who pay for – not profit from – big government no matter where they live. It is not good.

So, I support a redistricting plan that breaks up the big cities with a goal of reducing the influence of voters who depend on big government. Many redistricting ideas have been proposed for Utah. Of those ideas, it looks to me like the Rep. Sumsion_05 map spreads out the big-government (red) vote best.

Of course this redistricting plan might backfire on us small-government advocates. What if the number of big-city voters out number small-city and rural voters in all districts instead of just one as is the case now?