Friday, February 29, 2008

The dynamic duo

The Clinton’s contradiction:

Senator Hillary Clinton-"But there's a phone in the White House and it's ringing. Something's happening in the world. Your vote will decide who answers that call."
WASHINGTON POST: Clinton’s “3 a.m. Phone Call” Ad

President Clinton -Oct. 2004: "One of Clinton's laws of politics is, if one candidate is trying to scare you, and the other one is trying to make you think, if one candidate's appealing to your fears, and the other one's appealing to your hopes. You better vote for the person who wants you to think and hope

FLASHBACK VIDEO: Bill Clinton Rule in ‘04: Vote for Candidate of ‘Hope’ Not ‘Fear’

Land of the irresponsible, Home of the scared ?

Being free requires a strong people, able to handle personal responsiblility and being free involves risk. Our founders firmly believed that those who choose safety over freedom deserved neither. Today we are drowned with messages such as “there ought to be a law against _____, we need to get tough on crime, we have a war on drugs, we need more police, we need more jails, we are soft on crime. “ These are all messages of selling us safety from our freedom.

Today many of these are even being sold to us as conservative values when they are really nothing more than authoritarianism, making people fear freedom and asking for protection from it. Whatever happened to the land of the free and the home of the brave ?

Record-High Ratio of Americans in Prison

My Way’s headline this morning read Record-High Ratio of Americans in Prison .Last year I did a series of articles about how out of control this had become and the economic and human impact this is having on society. The raw numbers are bad enough, but even they are don’t tell the real story.. Using state-by-state data, the report says 2,319,258 Americans were in jail or prison at the start of 2008 - one out of every 99.1 adults. Whether per capita or in raw numbers, it’s more than any other nation!

But let’s break that down into relevant data. One in 30 men between the ages of 20 and 34 is incarcerated. The United States incarcerates more people than any other nation, far ahead of more populousChina with 1.5 million people behind bars. It said the U.S. also is the leader in inmates per capita (750 per 100,000 people), ahead of Russia (628 per 100,000) and other former Soviet bloc nations which round out the Top 10.

The U.S. also is among the world leaders in capital punishment. In 2006 our 53 executions were exceeded only by China, Iran, Pakistan, Iraq and Sudan. The illusion we are soft on crime is one of the biggest fabrications of data used to create fear among the citizens to allow the government to take more of your freedoms away so you will be safe.

Getting what we asked for

“They want to be tough on crime. They want to be a law-and-order state,” said the project’s director, Adam Gelb. According to the report, the average annual cost per prisoner was $23,876, with Rhode Island spending the most ($44,860) and Louisiana the least ($13,009). As I reported on last year, while the costs are a real drain on the tax payer, for those who have invested in the prison industry, it has been like finding a pot of gold. They don’t have to worry about strikes or paying unemployment insurance, vacations or comp time. All of their workers are full-time, and never arrive late or are absent because of family problems; moreover, if they don’t like the pay of 25 cents an hour and refuse to work, they are locked up in isolation cells. According to California Prison Focus, “no other society in human history has imprisoned so many of its own citizens.” Who is profiting?

At least 37 states have legalized the contracting of prison labor by private corporations that mount their operations inside state prisons. The list of such companies contains the cream of U.S. corporate society: IBM, Boeing, Motorola, Microsoft, AT&T, Wireless, Texas Instrument, Dell, Compaq, Honeywell, Hewlett-Packard, Nortel, Lucent Technologies, 3Com, Intel, Northern Telecom, TWA, Nordstrom’s, Revlon, Macy’s, Pierre Cardin, Target Stores, and many more. All of these businesses are excited about the economic boom generation by prison labor. Just between 1980 and 1994, profits went up from $392 million to $1.31 billion. Inmates in state penitentiaries generally receive the minimum wage for their work, but not all; in Colorado, they get about $2 per hour, well under the minimum. And in privately-run prisons, they receive as little as 17 cents per hour for a maximum of six hours a day, the equivalent of $20 per month. The highest-paying private prison is CCA in Tennessee, where prisoners receive 50 cents per hour for what they call “highly skilled positions.”

At those rates, it is no surprise that inmates find the pay in federal prisons to be very generous. There, they can earn $1.25 an hour and work eight hours a day, and sometimes overtime. They can send home $200-$300 per month. Thanks to prison labor, the United States is once again an attractive location for investment in work that was designed for Third World labor markets.

A company that operated a maquiladora (assembly plant in Mexico near the border) closed down its operations there and relocated to San Quentin State Prison in California. In Texas, a factory fired its 150 workers and contracted the services of prisoner-workers from the private Lockhart Texas prison, where circuit boards are assembled for companies like IBM and Compaq. Oregon State Representative Kevin Mannix recently urged Nike to cut its production in Indonesia and bring it to his state, telling the shoe manufacturer that “there won’t be any transportation costs; we’re offering you competitive prison labor (here).”

Directly attributably to the politics of fear ( a/k/a the war on drugs
)

Drug use was rampant among American military personnel serving in Vietnam, many of whom were African-American or Latino (Baum, 1997, pp. 48). It was feared that returning personnel, twenty percent of whom were reported to be addicted to heroin, would fuel a crime wave in the U.S. Having promised to fight crime in his 1968 campaign, and responding to the connections between drug use, drug trafficking and crime, President Richard Nixon declared war on drugs in 1971 (Terkel, 1997, p. 29). Nixon made expansion of heroin treatment a major priority before the 1972 elections (Massing, 1998). After the election, these initiatives were set aside by the distraction of the Watergate scandal investigation, and Nixon’s resignation in 1974

Nixon created several new retribution-oriented, enforcement entities. The Drug Enforcement Administration, created in 1973 in the Department of Justice, became permanent. The contemporary war on drugs commenced with the demise of the Carter Administration’s policy of marijuana decriminalization in 1978 (Baum, 1997, pp. 112-136; Musto, 1999, pp. 262-267). An uninterrupted increase in spending across government levels for anti-drug efforts has ensued (White House, 1991, 2000b).

Since 1982, almost every Congress has passed anti-drug laws to crack down on drug dealers and drug users. An anti-drug, anti-crime package passed in December 1982 was vetoed by President Reagan because it provided for a cabinet-level drug czar who, the Attorney General feared, would interfere with his responsibilities (Gest, 2001, pp. 48-49). In 1984 Congress passed the Comprehensive Crime Control Act of 1984, which created a presumption in favor of pretrial detention of all defendants who are charged with a drug offense carrying a sentence of more than 10 years (notwithstanding the bail provision of the Eighth Amendment) (P.L. 98-473, sec. 203, creating 18 U.S.C. 3142(e)). This affects most federal drug defendants and the majority of federal drug offenses (21 U.S.C. 841 et seq.). New mandatory minimum sentences for drug offenses were also created in 1984 (Musto, 1999, pp. 273-274; P.L. 98-473, sec. 503, creating 21 U.S.C. 845A).

In 1986, in the Anti-Drug Abuse Act, Congress created many mandatory minimum prison sentences for drug offenses (P.L. 99-570, sec. 1002), notwithstanding Congress’ repeal of drug mandatory minimums in 1970. In the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1988, the drug crimes of attempt and conspiracy were brought under the mandatory minimum sentence scheme, as well as simple possession of crack cocaine (P.L. 100-690, sec. 6470 and sec. 6371). This has resulted in the mushrooming of the Federal prison population described above.

We have been given the protection we sought

Law is now utilitarian and can either be what the majority perceives or it can be what the elite says it is. There is no absolute. In the end now law is what a court or judge says it is.

The idea that God endows man with absolute rights, such as life and liberty, are all lost in the the legal theory os sociological jurisprudence. Oliver Wendall Holmes who was a a contemporary of Pound (and Frankfurter) clearly rejected the eighteenth and nineteenth century higher law concepts, as he felt “law was an embodiment of the ends and purposes of a society at a given point in history”.

But what are the implications of this? If there are no absolutes truths, then there are no absolute rights, because everything changes for the “ends and purposes of society”. Can anyone hear hear the phrase, “for the greater good of the group” ? Laws under Holmes view are “beliefs that have triumphed” and no more. Under this type of legal system and theory, The will of the state (and what best suits it purposes) is the law.Holmes posited, “Truth is the majority vote of that nation which can lick all others.” He declared He was so brazen as to declare that “when it comes to the development of corpus juris the ultimate question is what do the dominant forces of the community want and do they want it hard enough to disregard whatever inhibitions may stand in the way”

Here is what Holmes remarked concerning the nature of man, “I see no reason for attributing to man a significance different in kind from that which belongs to a baboon or a grain of sand, I believe that our personality is a cosmic ganglion, just as when certain rays meet and cross there is a white light at the meeting point, but that the rays go on after the meeting as they did before , so, when certain other streams of energy cross at a meeting point, the cosmic ganglion can frame a syllogism or wags its tail.”

How many are saying, that ok-at least we are “safe” ? At what cost?

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Nixonian Republicans For Hillary Clinton

When doing research for a past article I was taken back at the similarities in between Hillary Rodham’s positions and life and that of former President Richard M. Nixon. For those disenchanted with the Republican presumptive nominee, perhaps they should seriously consider Mrs. Clinton for President. Who knows maybe they could get on the Coulter Conservative Express for Hillary!

Conservative values and roots

Raised in a politically conservative household at age thirteen she helped canvass South Side Chicago following the very close 1960 U.S. presidential election, finding evidence of electoral fraud against Republican candidate Richard Nixon, and volunteered for Republican candidate Barry Goldwater in the U.S. presidential election of 1964. Her early political development was shaped most strongly by her energizing high school history teacher, who got her to read Goldwater’s classic The Conscience of a Conservative.

She attended the “Wellesley in Washington” summer program at the urging of Professor Alan Schechter, who assigned Rodham to intern at the House Republican Conference so she could better understand her changing political views. Rodham was invited by Representative Charles Goodell, a moderate New York Republican, to help Governor Nelson Rockefeller’s late-entry campaign for the Republican nomination. Rodham attended the 1968 Republican National Convention in Miami

While Senator Mc Cain was a foot soldier in the Reagan revolution, Seantor Clinton beat him to the punch as was one in the Goldwater revolution. Incidentally, John Mc Cain is serving in Barry Goldwater’s congressional seat today. Both Attorneys, But Hillary More Successful

There is no comparison in between the law careers of Nixon and Clinton. Nixon settled for a mundane family law practice after graduating third in his class from Duke , marrying Pat three years after graduation.

Senator Clinton became high profile and started earning a reputation for herself before she even entered Yale. During her senior year she based her thesis on the radical tactics of community organizer Saul Alinsky under Professor Schechter. Hillary had also earned a reputation as a student organizer and leader at Wellesley College, being the first student to deliver the commencement speech. Both started in Family Law, But Hillary was higher profile

In the late spring of 1971, she began dating Bill Clinton, who was also a law student at Yale. That summer, she interned on child custody cases at the Oakland, California, law firm of Treuhaft, Walker and Burnstein, which was well-known for its support of constitutional rights, civil liberties, and radical causes; two of its four partners were current or former communist party members.President Clinton canceled his original summer plans in order to live with her in an apartment in Berkeley, California, later writing, “I told her I’d have the rest of my life for my work and my ambition, but I loved her and I wanted to see if it could work out for us.” The romance did develop, and the couple continued living together in New Haven when they returned to law school.

In 1979, she became the first woman to be made a full partner of Rose Law Firm. From 1978 until they entered the White House, she had a higher salary than her husband. During 1978 and 1979, while looking to supplement their income, Rodham made a spectacular profit from trading cattle futures contracts;her initial $1,000 investment generated nearly $100,000 when she stopped trading after ten months. The court also began their ill-fated investment in the Whitewater Development Corporation real estate venture with Jim and Susan McDougal at this time.

Considered a “rainmaker” at the firm for bringing in clients, partly due to the prestige she lent the firm and to her corporate board connections. She was also very influential in the appointment of state judges. Bill Clinton’s Republican opponent in his 1986 gubernatorial re-election campaign accused the
Clintons of conflict of interest, because Rose Law did state business; the
Clintons deflected the charge by saying that state fees were walled off by the firm before her profits were calculated. From 1987 to 1991 she chaired the American Bar Association’s Commission on Women in the Profession, which addressed gender bias in the law profession and induced the association to adopt measures to combat it. She was twice named by the National Law Journal as one of the 100 most influential lawyers in America, in 1988 and in 1991. When Bill Clinton thought about not running again for governor in 1990, Hillary Clinton considered running herself, but private polls were unfavorable and in the end he ran and was re-elected for the final time.

Clinton served on the boards of the Arkansas Children’s Hospital Legal Services (1988–1992) and the Children’s Defense Fund (as chair, 1986–1992).In addition to her positions with non-profit organizations, she also held positions on the corporate board of directors of TCBY (1985–1992), Wal-Mart Stores (1986–1992) and Lafarge (1990–1992).TCBY and Wal-Mart were Arkansas-based companies that were also clients of Rose Law. Clinton was the first female member on Wal-Mart’s board, added when chairman Sam Walton was pressured to name one; once there was silent about the company’s famously anti-labor union practices.

Watergate The House Judiciary Committee controlled by Democrats opened formal and public impeachment hearings against Nixon on May 9, 1974. Despite his efforts, one of the secret recordings, known as the “smoking gun” tape, was released on August 5, 1974, and revealed that Nixon authorized hush money to Watergate burglar E. Howard Hunt, and also revealed that Nixon ordered the CIA to tell the FBI to stop investigating certain topics because of “the
Bay of Pigs thing.” In light of his loss of political support and the near certainty of both his impeachment by the House of Representatives and his probable conviction by the Senate, he resigned on August 9, 1974, after addressing the nation on television the previous evening. He never admitted to criminal wrongdoing, although he later conceded errors of judgment.

On September 8, 1974, a blanket pardon from President Ford, who served as Nixon’s second Vice President, ended any possibility of indictment. The pardon was highly controversial and Nixon’s critics claimed that the blanket pardon was quid pro quo for his resignation. No evidence of this “corrupt bargain” has ever been proven, and many modern historians dismiss any claims of overt collusion between the two men concerning the pardon.

Hillary was also involved in the Watergate investigation as Democrat Jeffery Zeifman recounts:

“her erroneous legal opinions and efforts to deny Nixon representation by counsel-as well as an unwillingness to investigate Nixon. In my diary of August 12, 1974 I noted the following:

John Labovitz apologized to me for the fact that months ago he and Hillary had lied to me [to conceal rules changes and dilatory tactics.] Labovitz said, “That came from Yale.” I said, “You mean Burke Marshall [Senator Ted Kennedy’s chief political strategist, with whom Hillary regularly consulted in violation of House rules.] Labovitz said, “Yes.” His apology was significant to me, not because it was a revelation but because of his contrition.”At that time Hillary Rodham was 27 years old. She had obtained a position on our committee staff through the political patronage of her former Yale law school professor Burke Marshall and Senator Ted Kennedy. Eventually, because of a number of her unethical practices I decided that I could not recommend her for any subsequent position of public or private trust.”

Healthcare

In his 1974 State of the Union address, Nixon called for comprehensive health insurance with the following remarks:

“Turning now to the rest of the agenda for 1974, the time is at hand this year to bring comprehensive, high quality health care within the reach of every American. I shall propose a sweeping new program that will assure comprehensive health insurance protection to millions of Americans who cannot now obtain it or afford it, with vastly improved protection against catastrophic illnesses. This will be a plan that maintains the high standards of quality in
America’s health care. And it will not require additional taxes.”

On February 6, 1974, he introduced the Comprehensive Health Insurance Act. Nixon’s plan would have mandated employers to purchase health insurance for their employees, and in addition provided a federal health plan like Medicaid that any American could join by paying on a sliding scale based on income.

The AFL-CIO and the United Auto Workers lobbied to kill the plan, not because they were fundamentally opposed to universal health care, but because they hoped for an even better plan after the next election. With the collapse of the Nixon presidency, however, followed by his successor Ford’s overarching concerns with the economy and government spending, the plan was put on the back burner and forgotten for a generation. Hillary Clinton has proposed a very similar plan in her run for for president.

Domestic policy

Nixon’s domestic policies often appear close to Hillary Clintons As President, Nixon imposed wage and price controls, as Hillary is suggesting freezing interest rates on adjustable rate mortgage loans.

Nixon also indexed Social Security for inflation, and created Supplemental Security Income (SSI). The number of pages added to the Federal Register each year doubled under Nixon. He eradicated the last remnants of the gold standard.

Green and for the worker

President Nixon created the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), promoted the Legacy of parks program and implemented the Philadelphia Plan, the first significant federal affirmative action program, and dramatically improved salaries for US federal employees worldwide. In the wake of racial tensions that had sometimes erupted into urban violence before he assumed the Presidency, Nixon’s policy on race relations and civil rights was perceived to be influenced by a doctrine commonly referred to as “benign neglect.” As a party leader, Nixon helped build the Republican Party (GOP), but he ran his 1972 campaign separately from the party, which perhaps helped the GOP escape some of the damage from Watergate. The Nixon White House was the first to organize a daily press event and daily message for the media, a practice that all subsequent staffs have performed.

What drove Hillary away?

1968 Republican National Convention in Miami, where she decided to leave the Republican Party for good; she was upset over how Richard Nixon’s campaign had portrayed Rockefeller and what Rodham perceived as the “veiled” racist messages of the convention.

Ironic as it may seem, as Hillary has matured she may be closer than ever to Richard Nixon. What she once found as republsive and drove her from the republican party, she has allowed her own campaign to do in even more overt terms with Seanator Barack Obama, protraying him in traditional African garb with a leak to the Drudge Report. So, if you are a Nixonian Republican, you can vote with confidence for Hillary Rodham Clinton. Nixonians for Clinton Unite!

Monday, February 25, 2008

McCain: ‘War Will Be Over Soon’

Sen. John McCain clarifies the distortion of his previous comment about being in Iraq 100 years during a townhall meeting. Edit: I removed the video, here is a link

Friday, February 22, 2008

Words matter, but actions speak louder !

"Words are important and words matter but actions speak louder than words," Hillary said. Did Hillary steal that idea without giving credit to the Gibbs? Look at the video on the sidebar and you decide!

Hillary's speech normally states that she is the candidate with 35 years experience and she will be “ready day one.” Sounds good, but is it only words? Is Hillary Clinton truly “ready day one” to assume the role of President?

Let’s look at her most recent actions and judgments to decide just how presidential she is. Hillary severely mishandled her own campaign for the office. The assumptions of Mrs. Clinton and her staff was that she would have this nomination wrapped up on Super Tuesday and that she was the presumptive nominee. Hillary and her staff had no real game plan after February 5th. Barack Obama on the other hand was prepared.

Mrs. Clinton is spot on when she says "Words are important and words matter but actions speak louder than words." Self confidence is a needed quality in a leader, but underestimating your competition is a sign of over confidence and arrogance. Today, we watch as Hillary is clamoring to win Ohio, Texas and Pennsylvania, in a race that was hers to lose. We see a lack of foresight to properly plan a political campaign, and frankly that is one telling sign of a candidate’s fitness for the job itself.

Let's take a look at her 35 years experience as a reason to place her in the oval office. Hillary starts the 35-year clock with her experience at the Yale Child Study Center, the place she revisited—and had her second "tearing up" moment at—shortly before Super Tuesday. Then in 1974 she served as a junior staff lawyer on the House judiciary committee's Nixon impeachment panel .

So why isn’t her important work on Watergate at front and center of this campaign? And why is it such a big deal that Ted Kennedy is backing Barack Obama ? Well lets listen to life long Democrat Jerry Zeifman and draw your own conclusions:

her erroneous legal opinions and efforts to deny Nixon representation by counsel-as well as an unwillingness to investigate Nixon. In my diary of August 12, 1974 I noted the following:

John Labovitz apologized to me for the fact that months ago he and Hillary had lied to me [to conceal rules changes and dilatory tactics.] Labovitz said, "That came from Yale." I said, "You mean Burke Marshall [Senator Ted Kennedy's chief political strategist, with whom Hillary regularly consulted in violation of House rules.] Labovitz said, "Yes." His apology was significant to me, not because it was a revelation but because of his contrition.”

At that time Hillary Rodham was 27 years old. She had obtained a position on our committee staff through the political patronage of her former Yale law school professor Burke Marshall and Senator Ted Kennedy. Eventually, because of a number of her unethical practices I decided that I could not recommend her for any subsequent position of public or private trust.

Her patron, Burke Marshal, had previously been Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights under Robert Kennedy. During the Kennedy administration Washington insiders jokingly characterized him as the Chief counsel to the Irish Mafia. After becoming a Yale professor he also became Senator Ted Kennedy's lawyer at the time of Chappaquidick-as well as Kennedy's chief political strategist. As a result, some of his colleagues often described him as the Attorney General in waiting of the Camelot government in exile.” (link)

Hillary assured me that she had not drafted, and would not advocate, any such rules changes. However, as documented in my personal diary, I soon learned that she had lied. She had already drafted changes, and continued to advocate them. In one written legal memorandum, she advocated denying President Nixon representation by counsel. In so doing she simply ignored the fact that in the committee's then-most-recent prior impeachment proceeding, the committee had afforded the right to counsel to Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas.

I had also informed Hillary that the Douglas impeachment files were available for public inspection in the committee offices. She later removed the Douglas files without my permission and carried them to the offices of the impeachment inquiry staff-where they were no longer accessible to the public.

Hillary had also made other ethically flawed procedural recommendations, arguing that the Judiciary Committee should: not hold any hearings with-or take depositions of-any live witnesses; not conduct any original investigation of Watergate, bribery, tax evasion, or any other possible impeachable offense of President Nixon; and should rely solely on documentary evidence compiled by other committees and by the Justice Department's special Watergate prosecutor.

Only a few far-left Democrats supported Hillary's recommendations. A majority of the committee agreed to allow President Nixon to be represented by counsel and to hold hearings with live witnesses. Hillary then advocated that the official rules of the House be amended to deny members of the committee the right to question witnesses. This recommendation was voted down by the full House. The committee also rejected her proposal that we leave the drafting of the articles of impeachment to her and her fellow impeachment-inquiry staffers.

It was not until two months after Nixon's resignation that I first learned of still another questionable role of Hillary. On Sept. 26, 1974, Rep. Charles Wiggins, a Republican member of the committee, wrote to ask Chairman Rodino to look into "a troubling set of events." That spring, Wiggins and other committee members had asked "that research should be undertaken so as to furnish a standard against which to test the alleged abusive conduct of Richard Nixon." And, while "no such staff study was made available to the members at any time for their use," Wiggins had just learned that such a study had been conducted-at committee expense-by a team of professors who completed and filed their reports with the impeachment-inquiry staff well in advance of our public hearings.


I am not going to go through a list of Hillary sins and accusations. But, from the beginning of her career to now she has had troubling patterns of personal and professional judgement which call into question her ability to be President of the United States. As Mrs. Clinton says, "Words are important and words matter but actions speak louder than words

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

IN ______ We Trust

2008 looks like it is going to be a great year for American politics. And yes , as a year of change! It is a great time to be alive, and to be able to participate in the greatest experiment in freedom and liberty that has ever been conducted in the history of the world.

New people are being energized to get involved in the political process and if trends remain true, more people will vote for President in 2008 than ever. Political apathy tends to be most common among those least affected (or more insulated) by government. The political parties have done a good job of getting out the vote among those on both the lower and upper end of the economic ladder.

This is most likely the most important election cycle for senior citizens ever, as the boomers enter into retirement, after years of the federal government (starting with the LBJ Great Society) “borrowing” from the Trust Fund to cover-up Congresses continual overspending. Both parties were indictable on their lack of fiscal discipline. The “who done it’s” is not going to replace the money. It is gone. In the real world, we arrest people who embezzle pension funds, in Congress we re-elect them because they bring home the bacon.

Americans have been more dissatisfied than ever with job the Democratic Congress who hold the purse strings, and the outgoing Republican President . So people want change and are motivated to get out and participate. People understand that the proposals of change will somehow directly affect them. Most people tend to want others to change so it will benefit them, so realize that if they do not participate, they may be the ones forced to change the most..or in layman's turn, it could cost them.

The question now looms, what to do? While we may differ on exact methodology of fixing the debt overload on the back of government, which is our debt, (and that is a good debate for another time); we must take a very close look at this election cycle. Who best represents the change we really want?

While this is being foisted off as an image election, rather an a issues one, this is the most important issues election I can remember. First, take this quiz to match you to the candidate who closest matches your views. See what questions you may want to ask of your candidate and who most closely represents you before you choose a candidate.

Secondly, understand the job of the President, namely what he does not do. Most of the issues in the debates and the stump speeches have nothing to do with the article II powers delegated to the President of the United States. So let’s look to the Constitution for a minute.

The link gives the full language, I will shorten it: Commander in Chief, Chief executive, grants pardons; he makes treaties , appoints ambassadors, public ministers and consuls, judges of the Supreme Court, cabinet officers, appellate judges and other offices that all require Senate approval.

Section 3 requires him to give a state of the union to congress, and that he may advise and admonish them on issues he feels strongly about. He may convene or adjourn Congress. He is charged that the laws be faithfully executed, and shall commission all the officers of the United States to do such.

Article 1, Section 7 All bills for raising revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives; but the Senate may propose or concur with amendments as on other Bills. It also designates, Every bill which shall have passed the House of Representatives and the Senate, shall, before it become a law, be presented to the President of the United States. In other words he may sign it or refuse to sign it and it become law, or may veto it. which can be overridden by a two thirds vote of Congress.

In other words, when you hear the spin that the focus of the election is on the economy and what is the President going to do to fix it, you must realize it is a intentional diversion from the duties of the job of the President actually is. The President signs bills or vetoes bill the Congress Passes. They can’t give us Universal Health Care, change abortion laws, sodomy laws or immigration laws. They are mandated to either approve or reject new laws; but to enforce all existing ones.

Case in point; In twenty of the last twenty eight years we have had a Republican President and those Presidents were all against abortion, yet you can still get an abortion in this country. So just because a President is for something or against something doesn’t mean he can change anything. He must protect and defend the constitution and enforce the laws that congress passes.

It is distressing when I hear it is time for honesty in government to listen to two lawyers sell people an idea that voting for them will somehow bring about a change that only the Congress or the Supreme Court can bring.

I was on Walter Williams’ George Mason University website this morning and saw a quote that could be a thesis for this election:

"Now those who seek absolute power, even though they seek it to do what they regard as good, are simply demanding the right to enforce their own version of heaven on earth, and let me remind you they are the very ones who always create the most hellish tyranny." ---Barry Goldwater

Last night in trying to listen to the returns I tuned into a 45 minute commercial for one candidate where I listened to promises of change, of no more poverty, no more taxes for those making under 50k, promise after promise. I missed the speech before in which Senator Mc Cain’s said asked are we going to return to the failed premise that trust government more than people.

We are going to have a real choice to make this fall. Are we going to entrust our government with even more power when they have not handled the power we have given them wisely? Are we now going to trust them with our health? Our coinage states in God we trust. The choice is really that simple, in whom do we place our final trust. This is an election that will determine the amount of control and trust that we place in the hands of our trust. Ourselves, government or God ? In whom will we trust?

Monday, February 18, 2008

Time to End the African Genocide Project

Today’s headlines from Reuters tell us President Bush is making a commitment to bring malaria under control in Africa. Good heart but terrible methodology.One must remember the true history of this to understand if President Bush wants to end the genocide or just appear compassionate and line some pockets. Lets remember the history:

In the 1960’s the World Health Organization sentenced children in African to death by malaria in the name of population control. Intentional Calculated Genocide . Population control advocates blamed DDT for increasing third world population. In the 1960s, World Health Organization authorities believed there was no alternative to the overpopulation problem but to assure than up to 40 percent of the children in poor nations would die of malaria. As an official of the Agency for International Development stated, “Rather dead than alive and riotously reproducing.“
Zero Population Growth

In effect, banning DDT was a zero population growth tool used on third world
Africa by the World Health Organization in the name of environmentalism. Lapkin sees these questions through the prism of a new form of First World vanity. “The anti-DDT crusade is made all the more outrageous by the distinct taint of neo-colonialism that is its indelible accompaniment. In a way, the push to ban this insecticide represents the ultimate in modern Eurocentric arrogance, the newest form of imperialism.”

He likens it to the “we know what’s best” Kipling version of taking up the white man’s burden imposing a green, insecticide-free colonial ideology of primal, untainted nature. Given the Herodian consequences, it seems to me that the more fitting analogy is with the Belgian than theBritish empire, and with Joseph Conrad’s Mister Kurtz. Still there can be no doubting his conclusion that “hubris, folly and ethnocentrism…spawned this unnecessary tragedy”.

Crichton says the most imperative of contemporary challenges is to retrieve responsible environmentalism from the clutches of those zealots for whom it has become a substitute faith and return to scientific discipline. He said, “I am thoroughly sick of politicised so-called facts that simply aren’t true. It isn’t that these ‘facts’ are exaggerations of an underlying truth. Nor is it that certain organisations are spinning their case… in the strongest way. Not at all — what more and more groups are doing is putting out lies, pure and simple. Falsehoods that they know to be false. This trend began with the DDT campaign and persists to this day.”

Feigned Concern for cancer

According to the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), a division of the World Health Organization (WHO), DDT is classified as Group 2B carcinogenicity; that is, there is an admitted insufficient evidence of carcinogenicity. On the other hand, a report issued by the IARC classified combined estrogen-progestogen oral contraceptives, the most widely prescribed contraceptive on the market, as Group 1 carcinogenicity.In other words, oral contraceptives, which the WHO claims over 100 million women worldwide regularly ingest, are by this classification defined as definitely carcinogenic. The WHO therefore justifies downplaying the immediate risk to hundreds of millions of women worldwide because “it is possible that the overall net public health outcome may be beneficial.” No again, population control is at the core.DDT has saved millions of lives, and the ban, based upon long disproved claims of carcinogenicity, is perpetuating the annual death of millions. Talk about a beneficial “overall net public health outcome”! “To only a few chemicals does man owe as great a debt as to DDT… In little more than two decades, DDT has prevented 500 million human deaths, due to malaria, that otherwise would have been inevitable.” *According to
Africa News, January 27. 1999, “It is believed that [malaria] afflicts between 300 and 500 million every year, causing up to 2.7 million deaths, mainly among children under five years”.

False Solutions are diversions

What Africa needs is water and DDT, not bed blankets and vaccines.

In Graham Greene’s 1949 thriller classic, The Third Man, Harry Lime — “the dirtiest racketeer who ever made a dirty living” — peddles diluted penicillin through the sewers of occupiedVienna.

During the film’s famous scene atop the city’s Great Wheel, Harry’s friend Holly Martins, played by Joseph Cotten, asks, “Have you ever visited the children’s hospital? Have you ever seen any of your victims?” “Victims?” replies Orson Welles as Harry, pointing to the tiny figures moving far below them. “Would you really feel any pity if one of those dots stopped moving — forever? If I said you can have £20,000 for every dot that stops, would you really, old man, tell me to keep my money — without hesitation?”

Africa needs clean water, food and drugs for diseases like malaria and cholera, yet Bill Gates and Gordon Brown want to vaccinate them all, while the WHO wants to give them AZT & Viramune (nevirapine). Go figure

Environmentalism as a Religion

Today, one of the most powerful religions in the Western world is environmentalism. Environmentalist many times have convictions immune to rational scrutiny. The question becomes whether you are going to be one of us, or one of them.

Environmentalists must be so proud. They are. Their heroine’s propaganda material and their own efforts managed to kill more people than Hitler and Stalin combined.The Green having long ago bested the Red’s murder of innocents high score, they now turn their attention to the biggest achievement of all: eliminate humans.

No, the time for bolder self-sacrifice has arrived. The only real, long term hope for the eco-sphere is a massive human population collapse, hopefully leading to the voluntary extinction of the human race. Already, a new urgency and groundswell of support is building for the idea that humans are a type of super toxin which the planet cannot sustain or support in the longterm. Cogent support for the voluntary extinction of the human race is well-articulated in all its ramifications and implications here : www.vhemt.org.


It is ironic that the industrialized world has eradicated malaria at home, and got the benefits of DDT, before we banned it and then campaigning to have it banned everywhere else. The leadership of Greenpeace and the World Wildlife Fund unconscionably turned a blind eye to an African malaria catastrophe that was a direct outgrowth of their own advocacy which costs millions of human lives each year in a completely preventable epidemic.

Smoke and Mirrors

Paul Driessen, (Green Power, Black Death) remarks, They show incredible disregard for the rights, aspirations, and even lives of the world’s poorest people. They constantly hammer on the supposed risks of using chemicals, fossil fuels, and biotechnology—and never mention the far greater risks that those technologies would reduce, or the lives they can save. And they have tax-exempt status, and get literally billions of dollars a year from foundations, and even government agencies, to promote their agendas and lies, despite their lethal consequences.

Their disregard for the poor, especially dark-skinned people in developing countries, is frightening. They’ve never apologized once for the deaths their anti-DDT policies have caused, never even admitted they were wrong, never offered any form of aid or compensation to victims or their families, and certainly they’ve never been held accountable.

During the World Trade Organization conference in Cancun a few years ago, the head of a major Mexican environmental group told a friend of mine: “We don’t care at all about the poor. We don’t want them to become rich or middle class, because then they will become consumers and that means you have to take more resources out of the ground to meet their demands, and that’s bad for the Earth. It’s better to keep them poor.”My Zero Population Growth days involved a lot of concern about the supposed population bomb, and then I started reading things from Julian Simon and other people, who raised questions that Paul Ehrlich [author of The Population Bomb and other environmentalists just couldn’t answer.

It became apparent that there was an environmental agenda that I was very uncomfortable with: keeping poor people poor, being so concerned about population that they were promoting anti-DDT, anti-biotechnology, anti-fossil fuel development, anti-economic development policies, that ultimately meant the poor were going to be kept poor, diseased, and dying prematurely.

Jacques Cousteau said we have to find a way to “eliminate” 350,000 people a day to stabilize global populations. And Prince Philip said he wanted to come back as a particularly deadly virus, and take out large segments of the Earth’s population. Club ofRome co-founder Alexander King wrote, “My chief quarrel with DDT in hindsight is that it greatly added to the population problem.” And former Sierra Club president Mike McCloskey said, “by using DDT, we reduce mortality rates in underdeveloped countries without considering how to support the increase in populations.”

Offer Real Hope

I am all for offering Africa real hope and real help and ending the genocide in
Africa. Lets start a malaria eradication program with spraying DDT and killing the malaria at its source. Constant pressure from concerned scientists and public interest groups appears to be paying off for the people of Africa, as the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) has endorsed the indoor spraying of DDT to battle malaria in sub-Saharan Africa.

Let’s help them drill wells so they can drink clean water. You start by helping people with the basics.I would encourage you personally to support charities like Blood Water Mission : http://www.bloodwatermission.com/ and to urge congress to lift the ban on DDT.

Edit: I am for environmental responsibility. I have lived in Estes Park, CO (Rocky Mountain National Park), I have lived in Old Florida in fragile areas (Homosassa, Crystal River and Ocala) and I live a couple miles from the Eastern Continental Divide in the mountains of Pennsylvania because of my affinity for nature. Respecting , enjoying and admiring God’s creation in nature does not mean you accept everyones solution to perceived problems. I do not accept that the solution to third world country populations is death by malaria by removing products that fight malaria. I do find pantheism is dangerous and misleading and many fall victim to the misinformation given to the well meaning.

More on the subject:

1.Kenney, Richard, “What Kills More: Ideology or Religion?” http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1411041/posts, 2005.
2. Kristof, Nicholas, “It’s Time To Spray DDT” http://query.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=F30D12FE355D0…“>http://query.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=F30D12FE355D0…, 2005.
3. Seavey, Todd, “The DDT Ban Turns 30 — Millions Dead of Malaria Because of Ban, More Deaths Likely” http://www.acsh.org/healthissues/newsID.442/healthissue_deta…, 2002.
4. Makson, Lisa, “Rachel Carson’s Ecological Genocide” http://www.frontpagemag.com/Articles/ReadArticle.asp?ID=9169“>http://www.frontpagemag.com/Articles/ReadArticle.asp?ID=9169, 2003.
5. Crichton, Michael, State of Fear, (Harper Collins, 2004) Pg. 487
6. Edwards, J. Gordon, “DDT: A Case Study In Scientific Fraud” http://www.fightingmalaria.org/pdfs/Edwards%20-%20DDT%20Frau…, 2004.
7. Hayes, W. 1956. JAMA 162:890-897.
8. Cashill, Jack, http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=450…“>http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=450…, 2005.
9. IARC, “DDT and Associated Compounds” , http://www-cie.iarc.fr/htdocs/monographs/vol53/04-ddt.htm, 1997.
10. IARC, “IARC Monographs Programme Finds Combined Estrogen-Progestogen Contraceptives and Menopausal Therapy are Carcinogenic to Humans”, http://www.iarc.fr/ENG/Press_Releases/pr167a.html, 2005.
11. Tren, Richard and Bate, Roger, “Malaria and the DDT Story” . IEA Research Paper No. OP 117. http://ssrn.com/abstract=677448.
12. Cashill, Jack, http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=450…“>http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=450…, 2005.
13. Foreman, Dave. Confessions of an Eco-Warrior. (New York: Harmony Books), 1991.
14. Shellenberger, Michael and Nordhaus, Ted. “The Death of Environmentalism” http://www.thebreakthrough.org/images/Death_of_Environmental…, 2004.
15. Galton, Francis, Memories Of My Life, http://www.mugu.com/galton/books/memories/galton-memories-1u…, 1908. (Emphasis mine)
16. http://gristmill.grist.org/story/2005/1/9/173940/4293
17. http://www.junkscience.com/malaria_clock.htm

18. What the World Needs Now is DDT http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?sec=health&res=9F0DEEDA1738F932A25757C0A9629C8B63

Sunday, February 17, 2008

No free lunch...anymore

In the age of entitlements it seems like the list of giveaways is endless. But we all know the saying, there is no such thing as a free lunch. Well that is not entirely true. When I enrolled my daughter in government schools they were indignant that I did not want to fill out the form to try and qualify for a free lunch.

Tonight, after church, I stopped at China Oneto pick up supper and while I was waiting for the order I looked at the headline in the business section, "Implications of UPMC's ethics policy far-reaching"

"As he delivered a typical $120 lunch order to a doctor's office last week -- three chicken or salmon entrees, three appetizers, a chicken sandwich and four salads -- Robert Bishop was mindful that his business, Mobile Menus, soon would be filling fewer orders

On Friday, he expects to lose the deliveries he makes to doctors affiliated with the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center." This picqued my curiosity because what is unethical about selling people who can afford expensive lunches whatever they want; are the hosptial becoming food nazis?

But I almost fell out when I read the following, "A new UPMC conflicts-of-interest policy ...aimed at making doctors' decisions free from influence created by gifts or improper relationships with the drug or medical device industries.... policy bans gifts such as pens, note pads and food provided by industry representatives as they work to present information about their products at doctors' offices.

Losing that food business for the UPMC doctors he visits, Mr. Bishop said, will cut his $5,000 weekly sales by about 20 percent. He said nearly all the lunches he provides to doctors' offices are paid for by drug industry representatives.

The policy directly applies to about 50,000 faculty, staff and students of the university's Schools of the Health Sciences and other professionals and staff employed or contracted by UPMC's U.S. operations.

But many others also will be affected, including local business owners such as Mr. Bishop, patients and industry representatives.

Mr. Bishop said the effect of the new policy will be mitigated in part by his other business interests. His family operates a gymnastics facility and he also works as a bakery distributor.

But he worried that other medical centers would follow UPMC's lead, and about the effects the change would have on other area businesses.

Looks like the Doctor's won't be getting a free lunch at UPMC...anymore.

Friday, February 15, 2008

The real republican race

Yesterday we watched Mitt Romney endorse John Mc Cain, after Mike Huckabee remained in the race after losing the Potomac Primary and any chance he had of securing enough delegates to win the nomination. http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x4dnqb_romney-endorses-mccain-1_news

Governor Romney also added a slap (at Huckabee) by releasing his delegates to John Mc Cain. In other words, as much as Romney doesn’t like Mc Cain, it goes twice for Governor Huckabee. Obviously there is a struggle for future control of the party, as Mc Cain is ten years Romney’s senior and Governor Huckabee would like the Dixicrats to have greater control of the party, and Governor Romney would like the status quo to remain. But even moreso, these guys seem to detest one another.

Much of this primary is actually much less about the nominees then it is the future of the Republican Party. The old guard of “anal retentive brand of conservatives” have lost a fair amount of pragmatic sense that allowed the party to grow and come into power over the last two decades. This included the dixiecrats, the Reagan democrats , and the people who just are neither fiscally liberal or surrender monkeys.

However, even with one of the most liberal republican presidents in modern history leaving office, with a near nominee that is to the right of Bush on fiscal discipline and to the right of him on foreign policy, the old guard are acting like D.I’s at Parris Island on some alleged orthodoxy that they don't hold themselves to, rather than politicial astute people.

Many people are actually excited about the election this coming fall and the potential change it could bring. And people like Huckabee and to some extent Mc Cain are tapping into that core of people. Our standard bearers put them to sleep and couldnt drum up enough funds to keep in the race.

In four years from now, I doubt the republican party will look like it does today. I see Mike Huckabee and his guitar and I envision him asking the question that the 80’s group, The Clash asked ; Should I stay or should I go? (see side bar)

In listening to Sean Hannity I see where him and Newt Gingrich are talking about a new Conservative Party where they can define conservatism. It will be interesting to see if they can build any grass roots support or not. Hopefully if they do they will do more than craft a contract but actually follow through with living up to it, unlike the last one.

The real republican race may be either to save the party or run away from it by 2010. I wonder outloud which party will implode first, considering our countries approval rating of Congress and the President are at all time lows. Something has to break.

How Risk Adverse is Hillary?

There are many ways to spin things and read statistics but would Hillary risk going against the popular vote after the Bush-Gore 2000 election, where Gore won the popular vote and lost the election?

This is a life goal so the question may not be whether the Clinton’s would risk it, but would the party stop it? Consider these informative stats from MSNBC’s FirstRead. “

From Chuck Todd, Mark Murray, and Domenico Montanaro
*** The statistical front-runner: No matter how one slices the election results from last night, there’s no denying that Obama is the statistical front-runner. He’s got a 100-plus pledged delegate lead and even has the lead if you factor in superdelegates. Here’s our math: The NBC News election unit hard count stands at 1078 to 969. If you factor in the unallocated pledged delegates, our estimate rises to approximately 1128 to 1009 in Obama’s favor (margin of error +/- 5 delegates). Toss in the superdelegates and Obama’s lead is 1306 to 1270 (again +/- 5 delegates). What does this mean? For Clinton to overtake Obama for the pledged delegate lead — which we think is the single most important statistic for the superdelegates to decide their vote — she’ll have to win 55% of the remaining delegates. Assuming next week goes Obama’s way in Wisconsin and Hawaii, that percentage rises to 57%. Toss in likely Obama victories in Vermont, Wyoming, Mississippi, Oregon, Montana, and South Dakota, then Clinton’s percentage need tops 60% of the remaining delegates available. And this is simply for her to regain the pledged delegate lead…

VIDEO: NBC Political Director Chuck Todd offers his first read on Barack Obama taking a clear lead in the Democratic delegate count.
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21134540/vp/23144732#23144732

*** Staying on the statistical front: Check out these cumulative vote totals for primaries and caucuses to date:
States Awarding Delegates
Total Vote %
Obama 9,373,334 50%
Clinton 8,674,779 46%
Others 726,095 4%

With Florida
Total Vote %
Obama 9,942,375 49%
Clinton 9,531,987 46%
Others 984,236 4%

With Florida and Michigan
Total Vote %
Obama 9,942,375 47%
Clinton 9,860,138 47%
Others 1,249,922 6%

*** Follow the leader: So no matter how you slice the total popular vote, Obama is the leader. He’s at 50% in states that have awarded delegates; he’s at 49% and leads Clinton by 3 points in states where both their names were on the ballot, and his lead is big enough that he leads even when you factor in Michigan where Obama’s name wasn’t on the ballot. Why does this popular vote total matter? Because it’s yet another important talking point when wooing superdelegates. How many supers will be comfortable voting against the candidate who’s leading in the pledged delegate count and the total vote count?

*** So now what? This Democratic race has two finish lines. One could be as early as March 4. An Obama victory in either of the big states would probably put the pledged delegate count out of reach for Clinton and would allow Obama to disprove the idea that he either can’t win Latinos or blue-collar white Democrats. Should Clinton sweep those big March 4 states, the race goes on to the end and becomes a rhetorical fight over stats and polls. The stats being the ones we’ve cited above (the pledged delegate count and the national vote totals), as well as the Democratic candidates’ standing against John McCain in the national polls. But one other thing to ponder: No one ever writes off a Clinton. How do we know? If Clinton were in the position Obama’s in right now, how many folks would be writing Obama’s obit?

How many skeletons are in superdelegates closet that could sway votes? How nasty do you think the democratic primary is going to get? Would Hillary risk imploding the party to get the nomination?

Reference: http://firstread.msnbc.msn.com/archive/2008/02/13/661146.aspx

Dealing in Reality

February 13, 2008

One of the things that first attracted me to conservative politics was NOT conservative politicians, but rather conservative political theory was more reality based than Utopian theory.
Dealing with differences in politics is different than dealing with differences in Christianity. In Christianity (as opposed to religion), pragmatism to compromise the message is heresy. A good friend of mine used to use the slogan, Relevant When Reaching Out, Reverent When Reaching Up.

I have noticed increasingly since the “silent majority” was mobilized by Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson years back, that there has been a increasing tendency to use an orthodoxy test in the political realm.Basically, leaders have used the same tactics they would in a religious denomination to control their political adherents to their policies of political orthodoxy. Actually, it was quite a successful and brilliant sociological observation and application.

Unintended Consequences
As we saw in films like Jesus Camp, many evangelicals have wrapped Jesus, the Cross, the American Flag and the Republican Party into a package deal. While I know many evangelicals who truly do not understand how a Christian could vote for a democrat and still be a Christian, they have allowed their values to be defined by a political party, party leaders and pundits rather than the Bible.; allowing their worldview to be shaped by Dr. Dobson, Pat Robertson and Fox News.

Of course the fall out has not just been in the political realm, but also in the church, which is a movement that is many ways the antithesis to (and rejection of ) the moral majority, and it is varies from Rick Warren to the social gospel to some believing that the government should be the ultimate hope and savior of the poor .

We see another trend in conversions over the last decade where there is a larger scale testing of orthodoxy among the conservative. For example, Catholic converts intolerance of their former protestant brothers and tendency to be more catholic (or less tolerant) than their priest or bishop. And Creedal protestants (reformed) in a continual war on who can carry the reformed banner, with the converts being a brand of mean spirited brethren who is out to win an argument of who is the most orthodox, rather than to allow themselves to be used as the city of the hill. There has been a tendency to litmus test each other to see if we are really _______, or ________ enough. Just fill in the blank to the descriptive.

Good for the Goose
What is good for the goose is not always good for the gander. While the need to avoid a pragmatism in faith is obvious, unless one is a humanist whose faith (or god) is the government, political decisions are made in a much more pragmatic fashion.
Conservatives made huge gains for many cycles because of democrats reaching to their base in primaries caused them to by-pass candidates that would have won in the general election. This year, the conservatives are making the same error, demanding to be placated.

What have we done?

We had the same opportunity to field candidates and support them as anyone else did, but didn’t. We had the same chance to get out the vote, but didn’t. We had the same chance to generate enthusiasm for our candidate as anyone else, but haven’t. Why are we whining instead of solving???I look to some of the differences we are crying about and I find some real hypocrisy.

As a conservative I must speak out. We all see how much it cost to run for office and said it was broke, what was our solution? Do nothing. We all see the quality and the difference of choice of candidates (including not having one of our own for how long???) And we did what? Nothing. But somebody tries to do something and we boo it. Where has been our remedy to fix Campaign Finance Laws if we hate it so much? Where is the legislation? Where is the restoration of our lost first amendment rights we are screaming about? It is little more than a whining point until some action occurs.

Why is it a conservative position to have a marriage amendment to the constitution? Is not the conservative position for a smaller, states right government? Then why does the federal government defining marriage by constitutional amendment make any sense? What is in the constitution that makes marriage anything else?

Pro life? Where was George Bush and Jeb Bush with Terry Schiavo? If we want to get beyond abortion in defining pro-life , then there are a whole lot of litmus tests that conservatives are not going to be on the same page on. Oh, and what was Reagan’s position or his families?

On borders. Having been “a foot soldier in the immigration fight” ,firing illegal’s whose had bad social security numbers in Denver , witnessing the federal government notifying employers SSN’s didn’t match, and employers ignored it. The government knew where illegals were and ignored it, citing the positive effect it had in taxes that were received that benefits were not accrued. In other words, the government policy was to not enforce the law, not come down on employers heavily supporting our politicians for hiring illegals and allow the infrastructure of our communities to suffer supporting the impact the illegal labor brought with it in terms of healthcare and assistance.

Our conservative response, say it was out of control and sending them back was a pipe dream. So pragmatically, if that is the executive position, do you complain or do you find another alternative? But when you come up with alternative to just ignoring the problem and not enforcing the law, you are soft on immigration.

Ignore the pundits
While I may not agree with all the solutions that Senator Mc Cain brought to the table, I certainly like them much better than the ones the conservatives did not bring. I will always choose a leader who seeks a solution to a problem and is not afraid to fight the status quo over someone who has a eye on their ACU rating. That reminds me of quarterbacks who are more concerned about their passer ratings than the team winning.

A few questions; how can we expand budgets and cut taxes in a time of war and be fiscally conservative? Is being fiscally irresponsible and expanding the government ever a conservative position? Is overextending the military a conservative position? Is not enforcing the law a conservative position? Is amending the constitution a conservative position? And who gets to define what is conservative?

I have heard many of the pundits say now is the time for the Mc Cain to solidify the base. I disagree. Now is the time to reach out to the general public and start your campaign and compare yourself to others in the race. The base has their choice to make, you have nine months to compare and contrast yourself to the electorate. Be who you are, not who people want you to be. Don’t be a fake for anyone.

Let the voters decide if you are conservative enough, not the pundits.

Grassley should re- focus on the political speech by a 501 c 3

Grassley should Focus on the Family
02/12/08 07:52 ,
Last November, Senator Grassley (R-IOWA) (a), opened an investigation on six major television evangelists and their lifestyles(b). This came on the coattails of the Oral Roberts University scandal and lawsuit this fall(c). A friend of mine e-mailed me a article about the investigation knowing my interest in church-state matters.

Understanding that the ministries are not required to file 990’s, I figured it wouldn’t amount to anything so dismissed it. I had done some quick research on Seanator Grassley and found he is no fan of disclosure himself, so to want television evangelists to provide him information beyond what the government requires makes we wonder just how conservative he is. (This letter is unbelievable.)(d)

It is ironic that the senior senator seeks people to cooperate upon his request when he himself will not. Senator Charles E. ‘Chuck’ Grassley REPEATEDLY REFUSED TO PROVIDE ANY RESPONSES TO CITIZENS ON ISSUES THROUGH THE 2004 NATIONAL POLITICAL AWARENESS TEST. Senator Charles E. ‘Chuck’ Grassley REFUSED TO PROVIDE THIS INFORMATION WHEN ASKED TO DO SO BY:

Major News Organizations and key national leaders of both parties including,
John McCain, Republican SenatorGeraldine Ferraro, Former Democratic CongresswomanMichael Dukakis, Former Democratic GovernorBill Frenzel, Former Republican CongressmanRichard Kimball, Project Vote Smart President.

One starts to ask why Grassley is investigating the televangelists all of a sudden and then it becomes a bit clearer. Many of the television evangelists were part of the Board of Regents of Oral Roberts University . In May 2006, ORU was contacted by the Internal Revenue Service over a complaint about the school’s involvement in a local political campaign in potential violation of its 501(c)(3) status(e). Now that is fair game. If a organization wants a 501 (c) (3) exemption, and especially a religious organization, it should abide by the rules of the law it places itself under (f), and if they violate it , be subjected to the penalty of the law.

Now to the rescue of the televangelists comes Garry M CCaleb : “We’re not representing any of the parties involved, but when I see a senator charging into organizations, wielding this kind of budget ax and laying bare religious figures and expenditures, huge constitutional questions are being raised,” said Garry McCaleb, senior counsel at the Alliance Defense Fund, a religious liberty legal group founded by Focus on the Family and other influential evangelicals. Interesting to find, Robert “Bob” S. Waliszewski ,Media and Culture Director, Focus on the Family, sits on the Board of Oral Roberts .(g)

Where Senator Grassley gets legal authority to conduct such an investigation og lifestyles of televangelists is beyond me (though abuse of power has been the trend in government ); investigating tax exempt organizations that abuse their status and disregard the spirit of the law is quite another. Last week I was listening to the news and on comes Dr. James Dobson(h), (introduced as founder of Focus on the Family), claiming to speak as a private citizen(i), not just endorsing a candidate, but also speaking against another. Now of course, CitizenLink (j) makes sure it is “not really” the voice of Focus on the Family, so that Dr. Dobson can speak as a private citizen and thereby skirts the rules of the internal revenue service. But when someone hears Dr. Dobson, it carries the weight of “Focus on the Family” with it , disclaimer or not.

I have no problem if Dr. Dobson wants to register as a 527, register as a lobbyist, or be part of a political organization of his choice. That is HIS right. However, his feigning of speaking as a private citizen reminds me of “it depends on the meaning of is”(k).

Focus on the Family’s Dr. Dobson Says GOP has Abandoned Values Voters
Tuesday’s Losses Suggest “The Big Tent Will Turn into a Three-Ring Circus”
http://www.christiannewswire.com/news/797901467.html
Contact: Gary Schneeberger, Focus on the Family, 719-548-5853, culturalissues@family.org
COLORADO SPRINGS, Nov. 9 /Christian Newswire/ — Focus on the Family Chairman James C. Dobson, Ph.D., issued the following statement today on the results of Tuesday’s election:
“Laura Ingraham said it best. When Congressional Republicans wait until the First of October to begin reaching out to their base, they are destined to lose. That was the GOP’s downfall. They consistently ignored the constituency that put them in power until it was late in the game and then frantically tried to catch up at the last minute. In 2004, conservative voters handed them a 10-seat majority in the Senate and a 29-seat edge in the House. And what did they do with their power? Very little that Values Voters care about.

“Many of my colleagues saw this coming. I said in an interview with U.S. News and World Report shortly after the 2004 elections, ‘If Republicans in the White House and in Congress squander this opportunity, I believe they will pay a price for it in four years — or maybe in two.’ Sadly for conservatives, that in large measure explains what happened on Tuesday night. Many of the Values Voters of ‘04 simply stayed at home this year.…Someone should tell him that without the support of that specific constituency, John Kerry would be President and the Republicans would have fallen into a black hole in ‘04. In fact, that is where they are headed if they continue to abandon their pro-moral, pro-family and pro-life base. The big tent will turn into a three-ring circus…."

Senator Grassley, it is not your place to dictate lifestyles and salaries of televangelists, no matter how distasteful their message may be to your Baptist theology. Constrain yourself to the law.
Dr. Dobson, please quit giving religion a black eye with your lack of forgiveness to Senator Mc Cain for tagging some evangelical leaders ” the ‘’self-appointed leaders” of the religious right, depicting them as intolerant empire builders who ”have turned good causes into businesses” while trying to exclude all but ”card-carrying Republicans” from the party.
Mr. McCain singled out for criticism two of the Christian right’s best-known leaders, Pat Robertson, the founder of the Christian Coalition, and the Rev. Jerry Falwell, the founder of the Moral Majority. He compared Mr. Robertson to ”union bosses who have subordinated the interests of working families to their own ambitions,” and he accused both men of trying to distort his opposition to abortion and ‘’smear the reputations of my supporters.”
”The politics of division and slander are not our values,” Mr. McCain said in a somber address to some 4,000 people who packed a high school gymnasium here only a few miles from the headquarters of the Christian Coalition. ”They are corrupting influences on religion and politics, and those who practice them in the name of religion or in the name of the Republican Party or in the name of America shame our faith, our party and our country.” The names of the ”agents of intolerance ” in 2000 may have changed but the description is spot on.. You are making his case for him and endangering legitimate non-profits tax exempt status by abusing yours. Please stop the transparent power struggle and Focus on the Family, not republican politics. God is not a republican and isn’t draped in a American Flag.
References
a) http://grassley.senate.gov/public/
b) http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2007/11/06/cbsnews_investigates/main3456977.shtml?source=mostpop_story
c) http://www.religionnewsblog.com/19595/oral-roberts-university-4
d) http://grassley.senate.gov/public/releases/2007/110620072.pdf
e) http://www.tulsaworld.com/common/printerfriendlystory.aspx?articleID=071016_1_A1_spanc85083
f) http://www.irs.ustreas.gov/pub/irs-tege/exec__summary_paci_final_report.pdf
g) http://www.oru.edu/boardoftrustees/reference.php
h) http://www.kansascity.com/445/story/480457.html
i) http://www.citizenlink.org/content/A000006474.cfm
j) http://www.citizenlink.org/
k) http://www.slate.com/id/1000162/

Give Me a New Law

Have you ever had a song just stop you in your tracks? About two years ago I was listening to the radio and across came lyrics that perfectly depicted American Christianity (video in sidebar):
don’t teach me about politics and government , just tell me who to vote fordon’t teach me about truth and beauty, just label my music
don’t teach me how to live like a free man ,just give me a new lawi don’t wanna know if the answers aren’t easy, so just bring it down from the mountain to me
don’t teach me about moderation and liberty,i prefer a shot of grape juicedon’t teach me about loving my enemies,don’t teach me how to listen to the Spirit, just give me a new law
what’s the use in trading a law you can never keep, for one you can that cannot get you anything, do not be afraid ,do not be afraid do not be afraid.
I was searching the internet yesterday morning for any news out of the CPAC Conference when I saw Dr. James Dobson in the news. “Dr. James Dobson released a statement to The Laura Ingraham Show. He stated his “personal opinions “of this critical election:
“I am deeply disappointed the Republican Party seems poised to select a nominee who did not support a Constitutional amendment to protect the institution of marriage, voted for embryonic stem-cell research to kill nascent human beings, opposed tax cuts that ended the marriage penalty, has little regard for freedom of speech, organized the Gang of 14 to preserve filibusters in judicial hearings, and has a legendary temper and often uses foul and obscene language.“I am convinced Sen. McCain is not a conservative, and in fact, has gone out of his way to stick his thumb in the eyes of those who are. He has sounded at times more like a member of the other party. McCain actually considered leaving the GOP caucus in 2001, and approached John Kerry about being Kerry’s running mate in 2004. McCain also said publicly that Hillary Clinton would make a good president. Given these and many other concerns, a spoonful of sugar does NOT make the medicine go down. I cannot, and will not, vote for Sen. John McCain, as a matter of conscience. These decisions are my personal views and do not represent the organization with which I am affiliated. They do reflect my deeply held convictions about the institution of the family, about moral and spiritual beliefs, and about the welfare of our country.” “
Where do I start? James Dobson does not get on Laura Ingraham if it is not for his being recognized for his position as Focus on the Family leader any more than he would be put on ESPN for his personal predictions on the NFL draft. So, the premise is flawed from the gate .
Secondly, as an evangelical leader if he is to make a statement about someone it should be true. Kerry approached John Mc Cain and asked him to consider being his running mate. According to the Boston Globe;
“The union of a Democrat and a Republican “would make good on the president’s promise to be a uniter, not a divider,” said one Kerry aide, who like the others spoke on the condition of anonymity. Such a ticket could offer Americans the prospect of a reduction in the partisanship that has increasingly gripped Capitol Hill during the past decade, as well as a return to the national unity experienced in the aftermath of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attack.”
Some of Dr. Dobsons claims are just untrue and several judge and assign intent to the action in clear violation of biblical precepts. Bottom line, it is just partisan politics, using his position as a evangelical leader in a questionable manner. He should be well aware that walking a tightrope of personal and professional statements could endanger his 501 (c) (3) status; especially in light of the Oral Roberts crisis and Senator Grassley’s hearings. While I am well aware that the “little disclaimer” legally protects Dr. Dobson’s Focus on the Family organization, that is exactly what the Grassley hearings are about.
I believe Phil Gramm (Tex.), nailed it yesterday in the Washington Post when he said; “They say they have principles, but some of it is their ego and power, too. They’re well-known, and they’re used to having power.” Gramm acknowledges. “Some people, in their own minds, think they have exerted a strong influence over the party, and now they are seeing that influence passing,” he said. “There’s some bitterness on their part. They’re people who put their dogma in front of the interests of the country.”
But I have even greater concern for a trend we have discussed for years having a negative influence on the church, namely Americanized Christianity. It is a form of Christianity that has a different worldview than we have in the Bible. Perhaps this is why so many evangelical leaders could vocally endorse Romney, as his worldview may be closer to theirs than the Bibles.
Over at Political Punch Jake Tapper notes (Editor’s note — that’s not true. Kerry approached McCain, McCain said no.) and then brings up David Kuo’s response to Dr. Dobson:
And there, in a nutshell, is the Christian worldview as James Dobson pronounces it:
- cutting taxes- a Constitutional amendment “protecting” marriage- elimination of embryonic stem-cell research- a US Senate stripped of the very powers that the Founders gave it- not cursing.
Darn. Is there a more succinct and stunning summation of the reason why evangelical voters are throwing off self-appointed evangelical mullahs like James Dobson? And why, according to a new Barna study, 40% of evangelicals would vote for the Democratic candidate if the election were held today (versus 28% for the Republican candidate).
Evangelical voters are saying that they think a Christian worldview should include tackling issues like poverty and health care. They are saying that perhaps Jesus would oppose the wanton torture of other human beings. They are saying that perhaps obeying God’s first command - to care for His creation - matters. And they are saying that the idea of deporting 12 million illegal immigrants sounds cruel and frightening.
By putting himself out there so forcefully, Dr. Dobson risks playing the role of Dr. Kevorkian in ushering in the end of the old-line religious right.
After the passing of Dr. Falwell I did a post entitled When the truth becomes a liability on another site that stirred great response and emotion from people.
Just as the climate for spiritual abuse is set by biblical illiteracy; so is the climate in every other arena. Failing to hold our political leaders to account and first to be truthful, rather than parrot a line, then to assault truth and call it unwelcome, or term it unpatriotic is inexcusable.
The truth is an unsettling matter and tough to deal with. A song comes to mind from years back from Fleetwood Mac: Tell Me Lies. We should be very careful of who we lend our support to publicly when we don the title Christian and associate it with ourselves. Don’t be used as a stooge and parrot lines, it reflects on the body of Christ.
Do you feel like the republican party has been honest with the American public? Do you in any way equate someones political affiliations with their Christianity? Are you comfortable with political messages from the pulpit? Do Christians really have a public voice that represents them or are they just thrown a bone now and then to keep them in line and quiet?
The last time I checked the Canon was closed and the law was fulfilled in Christ. Is our hope in Christ or are we just humanists in a church putting our faith the state? As political as I am, my ultimate faith for my future is in Christ, not a political party.