Friday, August 28, 2009

Obama's Thugs

From the American Thinker today comes an article by Kyle-Anne Shiver entitled Obama and the Thugs. You need to read the whole thing and look at all of the links, as she is not making this stuff up. The White House has staged town hall meetings in which only certain people could ask the President softball questions. They have had "doctors" extolling the virtues of single payer health care, only to be shown later that they weren't really doctors. They have sent goons to beat up ordinary citizens who speak out. Congressmen have bussed in people to fill up town halls in order to deny their constituents entrance. What is going on?

Of course, this is not the first time in history that playing politics has been a contact sport. The answer I suspect may be to have our own security forces at these events. Not armed, but trained in "persuasion" to act against the goons. The other thing is to have plenty of video cameras recording so these guys can be identified and outed at the very least.

Meanwhile, I found this somewhat amusing. Hitting home just how mean spirited the "tolerant" side is, and how "unjust" the people who are always looking for "justice" can be there is this piece also from the American Thinker today by C. Edmund Wright calling for those who oppose ObamaCare to go to the floor of the Senate and deliver a speech in the same vein as the "Liberal Lion" did against the nomination of Robert Bork to the Supreme Court. Of course, in this case, they would be telling the truth. Hmmm....

Thursday, August 27, 2009

If Liquor were Treated like Guns

Marc Folco has an excellent piece in the South Coast (Massachusetts) Today for August 23, 2009 entitled Open Season: A new twist on the liquor license. It really is must read. Thanks to David Codrea for bringing it to my attention via the War on Guns.

In the article, Marc uses government statistics to make the point that alcohol kills far more people each year through drunk driving and diseases associated with consuming alcohol than are killed with guns. So, rather than implement more gun control, why not apply the same methods to alcohol control?

It's obvious that we need liquor control more than gun control, so let's treat alcohol and alcohol consumers — including myself, a social drinker — the same as we treat guns and gun owners. From now on, you'll need a license to buy and/or consume alcohol and it will cost you $100, renewable every six years. Before your license is issued, you will undergo an extensive background check, get fingerprinted and photographed and take a safety course that stresses the dangers of drinking, alcoholism and drunk driving. Balk at that? It's the same fee and procedure as for a gun license.
But wait! It gets better!

The background check is to see if you have prior convictions of drunk driving (DUI) or if you've been treated for alcoholism. If you have, you will be denied a License to Purchase and Possess Alcohol (LPPA). Also, if you've ever been convicted of a crime that was punishable by a two-year jail term (whether or not you served time), no license for you. Those buying liquor stronger than 80 proof will be required to apply for a Hard-Capacity LPPA.

Upon entering a liquor store, you will be required to present your LPPA and you'll be limited to one case of beer, four regular size bottles of wine (or two big ones), and a fifth of hard liquor per month. And come back in a week to pick it up. Don't forget about that seven-day waiting period. All purchases will be logged into a national computer database, so you can't jump from store to store or even state to state.

If you try to buy more liquor than your monthly quota, the computer will flag it and your license will be revoked and you will pay a heavy fine and serve jail time on the assumption that you are conducting illegal "straw purchases" for drunks, unlicensed persons and kids. It's the reason some politicians want to limit us hunters and shooters to buying one gun a month — they blame us for reselling them to gangbangers to kill their rival "colors" with.
He continues in this vein, citing proposed restriction after restriction, all to keep alcohol out of the hands of people who will abuse it. He doesn't quite go so far as to drag out the "for the children" argument, but he does make the case that buying alcohol would become a pretty oppressive thing to do, and that there are enough "gotcha" provisions that only the truly intrepid would attempt it. The cleverness of this piece is to make the reader empathize with how the legal gun buyer and owner is made to feel like a criminal, and to point out the many ways that the legal gun owner is put in jeopardy for failure to dot all the eyes and cross all the tees.

The really galling part is that every gun owner knows that these laws have no effect on criminals, who, not surprisingly, don't obey laws. Gun owners suspect that the legislators know that too. This suspicion in turn makes gun owners wonder if the legislators are really that out of touch, or is there a more sinister motive at work here.

It all sounds crazy doesn't it? Like a bad dream. But I'm not making any of this up. These are some of the same stupid laws that we have to follow — and some that are being proposed — for legal gun ownership. Now you know how we feel.
Left unsaid, of course, is that keeping and bearing arms is not supposed to be infringed. Yes, there are consequences to misuse, as there should be, but the restrictions in place represent a prior restraint, which is anti-constitutional. Why do people who are smart enough to see that, choose to continue to ignore it.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Anything you say to your doctor can be used against you

Just when you thought it was safe to go back to your doctor, along comes Sen. John McCain to snatch certain defeat from the jaws of victory. David Limbaugh has the scoop today in the column entitled Don't Give Obamacare a Life Raft. I had hoped after the election that McCain would skulk away, having violated his oath too many times, but especially egregiously with the McCain-Feingold "Campaign Finance Reform Act." But no, here he comes again, riding to the rescue of Leftists everywhere with a proposed lighter version of a single payer health plan. At this point, the best they can hope for is something they can call "health care reform" which will serve as a marker for future efforts towards a single payer system.

We can not let this happen, if we want to maintain even a shred of our liberty. Imagine going to the doctor and being given a Miranda warning.

OK, so Miranda warnings may be harsh. But you should realize that the most intimate details of your life may be probed, and will surely end up in a Federal database, where someone may use it, perhaps illegally, to discredit you at some later point in your life. Think of all the attention"Joe the Plumber" got from someone illegally going into his State of Ohio files and pulling stuff out to use to discredit him during the campaign, all because he asked the One a question. The press, because it fit their agenda, happily reported the information despite knowing of its illegality (and that the story should be exposing that illegality.) Doctors have a way of asking seemingly conversational questions like "so how was your weekend" then writing down all the details, harmless as they may be at the moment, to be memorialized in the Federal medical records database, there to come back to haunt you when you least expect it. It might be wiser to deflect the question than to answer "I was loading ammunition this weekend."

Sunday, August 23, 2009

There's work to be done in NYC

I am afraid that this post turned out to be all too true. Arthur Frommer, the famous travel writer, had this post up on his blog suggesting boycotting Arizona travel because...horror of horrors...they carry guns there! I would add that I hope he keeps his effete New York travelers out of North Carolina too.

But the real action comes in the comments. Check this one:

Travel4Sushi - They are extremists because their behavior, openly wearing guns to a political event, is well outside the perceived political center of a society or common moral standards - part of the definition of Extremist.
So Linoge has made his case.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Appeal to the Constitution

James Madison is probably rolling over in his grave. The Federal government has long slipped the leash of his finely crafted Constitution. Obamascare is only the latest usurpation of powers by the Federal government. So much that they do is not Constitutional. Rather than discuss the health care reform proposals on their merits, which gives the Left a tacit reason to continue with them, we should be asking by what authority do they propose to do anything at all. Today, at the American Thinker, Andrew Sumereau has an article entitled Introducing the Tenth Amendment. The tenth is the one that says powers not delegated to the Federal government are reserved to the States or to the people. It's an important point, and one often overlooked. The States may impose a health care system, or they may not. But the Federal government is not empowered to do so. The Constitution was a delegation of certain enumerated duties to the new Federal government by the States. The States, in turn, derive their powers from the People. So, the People ultimately have the power, and the Rights described in these various Constitutions. Several States have passed resolutions asserting their Tenth Amendment rights. We should applaud these, and insist our own state passes a similar resolution. If enough States do so, it may even get through the incredibly thick heads of our "representatives."

Meanwhile, if we want to recommend something to our Congresscitters, who keep insisting that the "system" is broken, we could recommend they do something that is actually within the enumerated powers granted to Congress. They could force the States to recognize health insurance from any other State. That would be "regulating commerce between the States," and I suspect Madison would approve.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Taking it Public

Walls of the City has a great post called Taking It Public about the man open carrying a firearm at the Arizona speech given by The One. Hot Air has the story on how MSNBC tried mightily to hide the race of the man in question to promote their agenda here, which basically boiled down to PSH. Say Uncle has more discussion of the issue from the points of view of other gun rights activists here. Even the White House has put out a positive announcement on the topic, or at least as positive as this president is likely to get here.

Indeed, this incident has been discussed so frequently, that you may be wondering why I am weighing in, given my general reluctance to speak up when others have already done so, often more eloquently than I can. So here goes: for a long time I have been of two minds on the topic.

I applaud those who choose to open carry. As Linoge says:

Simply put, a right not exercised is a right well and truly lost. It is not "normal" for citizens to carry rifles because citizens do not carry rifles, and citizens do not carry rifles because it is not "normal". Now, when given the option of first changing the definition of "normal" by words alone, or first carrying rifles, which do you think will actually result in honest change?
It is, of course, a circular argument, but it also makes a point, that I have made as well, that people no longer go about armed. For whatever reason, and there are many, it is no longer "normal." Many people look at you as paranoid if you even carry a simple pocket knife. The only way that carrying a weapon will ever be "normalized" is if some hardy souls begin to carry openly. Such hardy souls will face hostility from their fellow citizens and from some "authorities" who will generally make their lives miserable. So such people would need the support of family and friends who shared their goals. As for tactical advantage, I think it is generally a wash. You potentially give up surprise, though not necessarily. But you do gain speed, since you don't risk fumbling around under your cover garment for your weapon.

On the other hand...

A person who ventures out with a gun obviously on his hip must be a fairly articulate speaker, who has rehearsed in his mind a number of scenarios, and has well chosen come backs for things people might say. If you are a stumblebum when speaking to people, as I am, it may be better to be discreet. If your wife, your children, or your friends are not on board, it may be better to be discreet. If you are not wealthy enough to out spend the State whenever you are stopped and arrested on trumped up charges for defying their "authoratah," you may want to be discreet, because you will be scrutinized, and you must obey every jot and tittle of the convoluted, contradictory and unevenly applied "law."


Concealed carry has problems too. The obvious is that when you have to go before the State and apply for a license to exercise a right, it really can not be said to be a right. A concealed handgun permit, like a driver's license, is a privilege. It can be taken away just as easily as it was granted. Where open carry is permitted and generally recognized, you can fall back on that and open carry if concealed carry is not granted. But if you live in a police state, and many places in the United States have become exactly that, you may not have that option.

So, which ever way you decide to go, you will get no argument from me.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The Repo Man

Robin of Berkeley is the nom de plume of a "recovering liberal" writing for the American Thinker. Today, she has an appropriately thoughtful piece entitled Obama the Repo Man at American Thinker. A quick quote to set the mood:

Cezanne painted most of his masterpieces as a senior. Woody Allen still cranks out a movie each year though he's in his 70's. McCain at 72 and Ron Paul at 73 held their own on the campaign trail.

We all know people like this. Maybe we are people like this. I know I am: I am over 50, and I struggle with a chronic medical condition.
After setting the stage, she goes on to explore what, in her opinion as a psychiatrist and an observer of people, Obama and the people around him are like. And she discovers an ugly truth: Obama, his advisers and "czars" don't like people very much.

In the world of Obama and his friends, there are able bodied people who can be used. Then there are the clunkers, the parasites and sponges. The welcome mat has been pulled out from under us; the Statue of Liberty is sinking.

For Obama, the only needy people are the invented victims, casualties of what Michelle Obama has deemed a "mean country." These sufferers deserve special status and help; for the rest of us, the sands of time may be running out.
For Obama, average people are a cancer on the world, a virus that must be destroyed. He likes playing "messiah" to the masses, but he really doesn't like real individual people very much. In her words, "Obama and his friends are the ultimate repo men." So what happened to Obama to stunt his heart so, to make him feel as he does?

Why in the world would the Powers that Be value an endangered lizard more than us? Because they look at the world through the lens of resentment and rage and only see good and bad, black and white. In their distorted world, there is no Truth, no Higher Power, no "time for every season under heaven."

There is no karma to work out, no crosses to bear, no grand design. The world is absurd, and they must reconstruct it, engineer a new and improved Genesis. Because they reside in the miserable, illogical world of the Self, they have no other path to redemption.
And there it is: they have to faith in God, no belief in anything higher than themselves. They never see the grandmother's joy in the fresh face of her grand daughter, nor the hear the hard won life lessons the grandmother teaches. In their great desire to make the world into Utopia, they never stop to think that God can not exist without the devil, that we may only know perfection because we have known imperfection. The irony is that "Utopia" means "nowhere."

When you view people as bodies that are utilitarian and disposable, your heart is as absent as the cold, metal tin man's in the Wizard of Oz. You are like the condemned souls in Dante's Inferno whose punishment was to never know God. To hide the emptiness, you try desperately to control the world.

But if you live in the Divine, then every day is a miracle, and human lives are precious gifts to be guarded and protected like newborn babes.

So, who is the next poet among us? The next artist, scientist, builder, adoring parent?

Who is the holy person in our midst?
Who indeed.

Monday, August 17, 2009

What a wonderful world it would be...

Laura Hollis has a great piece up today on entitled Health Care Slaves? "Public Goods" vs Private Exchange. Hollis hits one out of the ballpark with this discussion clarifying some of the consequences of the mushy, muddleheaded thinking that people making the case for single payer health care have to employ. A little taste:

Having served on a well-attended panel entitled “Conservatism in Academe,” early on in the conference, I was fair game for anyone wanting to challenge conservative principles and policies. Later in the week, a colleague chatting with me over cocktails tried to defend single-payer health care. “I believe in having a civil society,” she explained pleasantly, “and in a civil society, I think health care should be a ‘public good.’”

Saying that health care is a “public good” sounds wonderful – the kind of statement with which no intelligent and compassionate person could disagree. But, as with so many blanket statements made by liberals, it does not hold up under scrutiny, and in fact the infrastructure necessary to deliver on such an apparently compassionate policy inevitably results in disappointment, failure, and – if the latter is not acknowledged – oppression by the very government it was hoped would be the solution to all human ills...
" a civil care should be a 'public good'." You wonder if the person making that statement really thought it through, explored the consequences of it, and the basis for making it? In case she didn't, Hollis explores some of them. She doesn't have to go far down the slippery slope to get to the point that nobody "owns" another persons work, and in making that statement, Hollis's debating partner was endorsing indentured servitude. However, it gets worse because when a service is "free" then everyone demands more of it, eventually outstripping the capacity of the system to provide. Since the government can not supply an essentially unlimited demand, services must be rationed. Eventually (as it has in Canada) the government if forced to tell certain doctors where they can and can not live and practice. One wonders at what point certain students will be forced to go into medicine whether they want to or not, and whether they will be told what specialty they must go into. That, of course, is true slavery, and should be repugnant to all. And what of the quality of service, when people who really do not want to are forced against their will to perform medical services in places they really don't want to live? Do you think they will do their best work?

The basis for such thinking is the discredited "bee hive theory" of human society, for that is what Leftist notions boil down to when you remove all the "sophisticated" language. If only people were more like bees, selflessly performing their tasks for the betterment of all, what a wonderful world it would be (say, that would make a great line in a song.) Of course, bees do it because of genetic programming. The "queen" isn't really controlling the hive (sorry elitists.) A better way to look at it is that the colony-queen, drones, and workers-make up a single individual. None of the bees can survive on its own. The queen can't feed, forage, or take care of herself, the workers can't reproduce, and the drones are the male equivalent queen, unable to visit flowers or acquire nutrition without the workers. Interestingly, colonies do fight wars. When nectar and pollen become scarce, a larger colony will invade a weaker, kill the weaker colony and and steal the honey. But men are not bees, and pretending they are only leads to totalitarianism when they prove, yet again, to be men.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Calling Evil by its Name

Francis W. Porretto has a Sunday Rumination up today over at Eternity Road entitled The Naming of Names. It is a discussion yet again of the importance of calling things by their actual names, and not letting the Left get away with changing the language in an effort to change the debate. If you allow them to "name" things, and to frame the debate, you have already lost the argument. He gives as an example, partial birth abortion, which is sometimes referred to as "Safe medical procedure." Of course the real name of this heinous act is "infanticide." Here's the money quote:

The power of names is nowhere so clear, or so important, as in our struggles against the death cults of our time. Death cultists must numb us to the moral implications of their proposals; therefore, they use euphemisms, linguistic diversions, and when attacked, slander and vilification of their opponents. They know the power of names, and seek to have it employed solely in service to their cause. Dare not call it a "partial-birth abortion;" that's far too accurate! No, it must be a "safe medical procedure" to ensure "women's health and safety." Dare not call it "mercy killing;" no, no, what we do here is "the ending of intolerable suffering" of one who has no remaining "quality of life." And "embryonic stem-cell research" must be referred to exclusively as "the pursuit of scientific knowledge," inarguably in the interests of all Mankind. After all, who doesn't want to live forever, regardless of the price...or of who must pay it?

If human life is sacred -- if each of us, however puissant or helpless, has a natural, God-given right to his life -- then the above is a vileness beyond quantification. It must be opposed at every turn. The principal battlefield, victory over which is critical to victory in any other forum, is the power of names.

Just so. Go read the whole post.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Sex and Whiskey, Oh My!

Nick Nichols has an interesting article on today entitled Contemplating Joe McCarthy, Socialized Medicine, Brothels and Whiskey. It's a title that definitely piques one's curiosity. In any case, it offers insight into how his brain works. The money quote:

The one thing that the neo-McCarthyites and I agree on is that analogies can be quite effective and, sometimes, even informative. I would urge anyone reading this column or watching ObamaCare propaganda paid for by the appeasement crowd in Washington, D.C. to consider this:

Legend has it that back in 1999, the federal government took over the Mustang Ranch brothel in Nevada after the brothel’s manager lost a federal fraud, racketeering and conspiracy case. I am told by sources on Capitol Hill that, as required by law, the government tried to run the operation. It failed and the Mustang Ranch closed. Now we are being asked by the Democrats to trust the economy of our country, our banking system, our auto industry and quite possibly the health of our loved ones to the same nit-wits who couldn't make money running a brothel and selling whiskey.

Think about it.
You do have to wonder. If the comparisons to the Post Office didn't phase you, if the analogy to the DMV's disdain for ordinary Americans didn't give you pause, if the abysmal record of the Public Schools didn't cause concern, perhaps this will. Sex and whiskey are two "products" which practically sell themselves. How could you lose?

Friday, August 14, 2009

Calling People Nazis

Andrew C. McCarthy has a great piece up today on National Review Online entitled Nazi for Me, but Not for Thee. I heard about it while driving around running errands today and listening to the Rush Limbaugh show. Rush had it up along with his "amazing stack of stuff." In the article, McCarthy makes the point that citizens pointing out similarities between ObamaCare and socialized medicine in Nazi Germany are not wrong. At the same time, Pelosi and other Democrats calling opponents of ObamaCare Nazis are engaging in scurrilous and misplaced name calling.

Whether you agree with that or not (I happen to think it’s undeniable), Rush was also making a larger point that is not only fair argument but essential argument. There is a trajectory of socialism, regardless of the good intentions of many socialists. As he framed it, you take things such as health care, things that are traditionally understood as within the ambit of individual liberty and free choice; you move such things into the ambit of state responsibility as the welfare state emerges and grows, on the theory that it is government’s responsibility to provide for everyone’s needs (by redistributing resources); as more things are moved from private to public control, the state by definition becomes totalitarian; and, inexorably, the totalitarian state gets bad leaders and the society comes to reflect the policy choices of those leaders.
There it is. At what point does a society made up of truly free men and women 200 years ago become enslaved? When a man can only buy what the State says he can buy, that person is a slave to the State. A free man can purchase whatever he can afford. When a man has to beg the State for medical care, because he can not get it on his own, he is a slave. A free man is able to see any doctor he can afford. If the State starts telling him what he can and cannot eat, what he may, and may not drink, whether he can smoke or not, and a thousand other things because it has deemed these things to cause health expenditures that are too high, that man is a slave. A free man can eat, drink, and do what he pleases and take the consequences thereof.

It is a given that we can not allow them to have health care reform. We can not even allow them to have something they call health care reform and claim victory. But beyond that, we must begin rolling back the New Deal. We can no longer debate the left on their terms, but must debate on the principles on which this country was founded, natural rights, civil rights, and the Constitution.

Fighting Back

Joe Sheffat is a "retired from active service" Marine who writes a stirring article today in the American Thinker entitled Fighting Back. Some choice words:

I have determined to never to cease to be amazed that, from a dirt parking lot in Arizona, I can talk to my son who is visiting London. Some smart person with a vision and the smarts to realize his vision started a chain reaction that involved a bunch of other smart people who eventually made this luxury available to me.

I have survived brain cancer thanks to the spirited individuals who have advanced the technology of the MRI, the discipline of neurosurgery, the precision of radiation therapy and the mystery of the chemotherapy that saved my body by burning it.

America thrives and shines as a beacon through the heft of a freedom that unleashes the individual human spirit to create goods and services of equity, refreshment, and wonder.

So, why is it that we, the American beneficiaries of freedom and the equity that comes of it, have turned the keys over to a cabal of slick, unaccountable, loose thinking masters of vaguery who cater to the free lunch crowd while condemning individuals who design, develop, and deliver the products that we so much enjoy?

How do we prevent a bloodless coup by nitwit socialists bent on a hunger for policies that would neuter the majesty of a freedom that unleashes the human spirit to succeed by diligence and imagination?
Mr. Sheffat goes on to discuss his frustrating experience trying to make his voice heard by his Congressional "representative." If it wasn't so tragic, and if the stakes weren't so high, it might seem funny. But of course, it isn't funny at all.

So, I send faxes, I contribute money, and I speak with congressional interns who promise to pass along my message to my congressman. This is rock star insulation. Protests worked against the Harriet Miers thing and they worked against the John McCain Border Surrender thing. Yet, on this the far worse ObamaCare, protests don't seem to work. The shadow of ObamaCare only looms longer.
Go read the whole thing, if only to get your blood stirring.

We have done this, you know. The Republican party put up a tired statist as a candidate who had poked conservatives and libertarians in the eye one time too many. For those who believe in keeping their oaths, McCain was a candidate they could not support after the McCain-Feingold debacle became law. It would be useful and instructive for someone to write a tome on just who made the decisions that finally put McCain up. I suspect though, that the entire field, except for Paul, was not made up of committed conservates anyway. I also suspect that Hilary will be seen in the future as a red herring candidate who kept the GOP's attention on herself until it was too late.

In any case, many principled conservatives voted for Ron Paul instead, or refused to vote for anyone. Certainly Paul was not the perfect candidate either. Quite a few stayed home and also didn't vote for a Senatorial or House representative as well not voting for a presidential candidate. That was a mistake. Add to that, Obama had built up one of the most impressive machines in the history of the Republic, and we now find ourselves with a Marxist/Fascist as president, and an overwhelming number of people from his party in the House and Senate who feel beholden to him because of his long coat tails.

This is why "the shadow of ObamaCare only looms longer." The president has been furiously campaigning for this bill since last month. He owns it now, and if it fails, its failure will define his presidency. So Obama is no doubt using some of his "Chicago Way" techniques on wavering Democrats, figuratively threatening them with concrete galoshes if they don't vote his way. Furthermore, the man has shown an ability to raise mountains of cash, which they will need to get elected in 2010. So, right now Democrats are weighing the strength of the opposition to ObamaCare against the wad of cash in Obama's pockets. Judging from Joe Sheffat's experience, it must be a lot of cash.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Kennth Gladney: Patriot

From American Thinker today, Matthew May has short article entitled Kenneth Gladney: 21st Century Crispus Attucks. Kenneth Gladney was attacked for passing out Gadsden flags during a protest outside SEIU headquarters in St. Louis, Mo.

When a black man supports the freedom movement, he unfortunately paints an extra large target on his back. The Left tries to divide us up into "groups," assigns group identity interests to each group, and keeps us stirred up fighting each other. Blacks are considered by Leftist to be one of their pet groups, so when a black man starts speaking for himself, they feel the rage of betrayal. I wish Mr. Gladney well, and hope he continues to raise his voice for liberty.

Doing the right thing

Continuing with the theme today of whether or not it is incompetence or malice, Dr. Paul Kengor seemingly answers the question in an article on entitled Saving Obama from Himself: The Machiavellian Thing vs. The Moral Thing. It's a clumsy title I know, but well worth the read. The money quote:

I'm greatly concerned with a toxic combination of inevitable rationing and what's being termed end-of-life counseling, which some fear may be mandatory . As someone who has been in the pro-life movement for years, plus studied history, politics, and, before that, worked full-time in healthcare-both as a hospital employee and reporter for healthcare publications-I've closely observed the long march by liberal "progressives" from the eugenics of Planned Parenthood founder Margaret Sanger to euthanasia. They got their way on abortion-which, according to the AP, is covered in the current government "healthcare" plan -and God help us if the door to euthanasia is cracked.
Go ahead and read the whole article. I won't spoil it by telling you which side Dr. Kengor comes out on. You'll just have to see.

I have a small quibble with the author however. "People problems" have been a "modern" concern of the left since their project was initiated. The left claims legitimacy by nominally expressing "the will of the people." But all people are individuals, with their own self interests. The problems for the left in a nominal democracy would seem insurmountable. It would be like herding cats. But these are, if anything, persistent folks, so they have to lie to us, use "creative" methods, change the terms of debate, and steal elections to achieve the goal of "expressing the will of the people." On the other hand, most leftist eventually succumb to the totalitarian temptation. It is much easier that way.

Changing subjects slightly, I was watching more of the Townhall meetings that are happening around the country, and the ways that Congressmen are either avoiding constituents, or are trying to berate and lecture them. Now some in Congress are committed "progressives," but many are just your normal unprincipled compromising wind sniffers. What could make them want to ram something down the throats of their constituents a against massive outpouring of disapproval? Someone has to be promising these guys something, and it would have to be big. My bet is on money.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Incompetence or Malice

The Smallest Minority has an unnerving post up today in which he presents several humorous, yet seemingly unerring "laws".

Heinlein's (or, if you insist, Hanlon's) Razor:

Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity, but don't rule out malice.

Then there's Grey's Law:

Any sufficiently advanced incompetence is indistinguishable from malice.

And Rick Cook's admonition:

The key to understanding the American system (of government) is to imagine that you have the power to make nearly any law you want. But your worst enemy will be the one to enforce it.
Kevin goes on to point out a number of unintended consequences of various laws and policy decisions...or were they? Was it merely incompetence or was it malice? Here is another example, from the 60s, taken from the Hoover Institution interview between Peter Robinson and Thomas Sowell:

Peter Robinson: "The transparent dishonesty with which quotas and preferences have been instituted and maintained here in the United States," you write, "is a dishonesty reaching into the highest court in the land as the Weber case demonstrates." Take us through what took place in the Weber case.

Thomas Sowell: In the Weber case, Weber was a worker in a plant in Louisiana and he wanted to get into a training program which would qualify him for higher jobs, and he was turned down. And blacks who had lesser qualifications than him were admitted. And so he took this to the Supreme Court. And the Civil Rights Act of 1964 said, "individuals," and Justice Brennan, someone with a great verbal sleight of hand, turned this around. Said, well, but the real intent of Congress, you see, was this or that and so he then ruled against Weber and then when the dissenting opinion of Rehnquist said that this reminded him of the great escapes of Houdini. That, you know, the language was so plain and clear, in the law itself. And it was also plain and clear if you got into legislative history where they talk about the possibility of quotas and Hubert Humphrey who was pushing the Civil Rights Act said, you know, I'll eat my hat if this thing turns out into quotas. Well, he wasn't there to eat his hat.

The emphasis is mine. You should go read the whole interview to find out just how anti-American and unconstitutional the whole quota regime is, but the question is again, was it incompetence, or malice, or both? I was thinking these of these ideas when I read this from the Liberty Sphere:

Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin called President Barack Obama's health plan "downright evil" Friday in her first online comments since leaving office, saying in a Facebook posting that he would create a "death panel" that would deny care to the neediest Americans.

"The America I know and love is not one in which my parents or my baby with Down Syndrome will have to stand in front of Obama's 'death panel' so his bureaucrats can decide, based on a subjective judgment of their 'level of productivity in society,' whether they are worthy of health care," the former Republican vice presidential candidate wrote.

"Such a system is downright evil," Palin wrote on her page, which has nearly 700,000 supporters. She encouraged her supporters to be engaged in the debate.

The claim that the Democratic health care bills would encourage euthanasia has been circulating on the Internet for weeks and has been echoed by some Republican leaders. Democrats from Obama on down have dismissed it as a distortion. The nonpartisan group, a project of the Annenberg Public Policy Center at the University of Pennsylvania says the claim is false.

Is Congress and the supporters of Obamacare being incompetent, or malicious? They all know that the way to judge legislation is to imagine that it is enforced by your worst enemy. Oh sure, the bill doesn't have "euthanasia" in it, and the bill doesn't have anything about health care rationing either. So, technically, Obama and his supporters are telling the "truth." But here's what could happen:

The bill will be passed. Sometime in the future, some regulator will "interpret" euthanasia into the language. Of course there will be fights about it, but the Supreme Court will find, somehow, that it is all nice and Constitutional, so just submit to it. Later, after we all get used to the idea of "putting Grandma to sleep," which is the only compassionate thing to do in light of her obvious suffering, the New York Times will run articles about how Down Syndrome babies lead such a miserable existence, how any "civilized" people would put them out of their misery. It's the only "compassionate" thing to do. They will keep up the drum beat, politicians will jaw bone and wring their hands, the Pope will point out the obvious and be ignored. One day, the some regulator will "read" into the law mandatory abortion for these unfortunate children. A court will manage to find that this is indeed what the legislators intended. And voila, there you have Margaret Sanger's eugenics program, all nice and legal.

Was it incompetence, or malice?

Sure, it's only one possible outcome, of many. But we know that the Left has dreamed of eugenics since the 1920s, and has had universal health care on the Democrat platform since 1948. So why give them the power over you to this to you in the first place? The Constitution doesn't grant it to them, so why would you? Remember that you must interpret any law in its worst light. Otherwise, you are just giving them the rope with which to hang you.

Incompetence, malicious, or both?

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Preparing for the Worst, so we can Achieve the Best

Aaron has a post up at Eternity Road today entitled Backlash in which he makes the case that The One has already made a profound mistake by sending union goons out to disrupt townhall meetings and tea parties, and then blaming it on "right wing extremists." The money quote:

The American people can put up with a lot, but we can’t accept that. Obama may be a smart individual. He may even be a “nice guy.” Whatever his personal qualities are, though, his actions bespeak a petty dictator, tired of the trappings of democracy, wishing we could move past the all the messy stuff and just do what he wants. This must end today. No one has ever told Obama “no.” The American people are now telling him “no,” and he is reacting like a spoiled child. Spoiled children, however, make mistakes out of immaturity, and Obama has made a serious mistake. He has sent his thugs out, and then taken to the national airwaves to denounce his own citizenry. We may have been prepared to negotiate before, but not now. This man must be defeated, and what remains of his agenda rejected completely and utterly.
I think he may be right, but we need to be prepared, and in this we need to be prepared to do more than just protest. I say this because I believe, that in order to avoid a thing, one must be prepared to have it happen. For example, it is common wisdom that in order to avoid war, we must be prepared to wage it successfully. An enemy only attacks if he senses weakness.

The Curmudgeon has a great post today on preparation entitled Heirs of Patrick Henry, Part 1: Preparation. After pointing to a number of sites detailing the what can only be described as a war on the people of the United States, he outlines his thoughts:

Here's your Curmudgeon's vision:

* Closed sessions of Congress to enact cap-and-trade, socialized medicine, and dramatic new taxes and tax increases (especially a Euro-style Value-Added Tax);

* Deployment of federal marshals against corporations and other organizations that resist the regime's new mandates;

* The accelerating use of force to suppress dissent against the Obamunist program;

* Federalization of the National Guard and the declaration of a "state of emergency" in selected regions;

* Federal seizure of infrastructural facilities such as municipal water and electrical power;

* Federal seizure of the Internet backbone and the cellular routing system;

* House arrest for well-known persons accused of "sedition" for their opposition to the program;

* Progressive deterioration of civil order.

Your Curmudgeon could be wrong. Indeed, he profoundly hopes that he is; what he's delineated above is no kin to the country he loves and would give his life to preserve. But it depicts the worst near-to-middle-term outcome he can imagine from the current political struggle.
But what if he is not wrong? To help with developing your own preparation plans, may I suggest two sites? Good, I know you will not be disappointed: The first is the Sipsey Street Irregulars and the other is the Western Rife Shooters. Both of these will give you some ideas about making your own preparations, based on what you perceive the risks might be.

Back in the 50s and early 60s, when they tried to convince us that nuclear Armageddon was just around the corner, many folks built bomb shelters. Maybe you don't want to go that far, but it never hurts to have a few weeks of rations on hand, now does it?

Friday, August 7, 2009

"You Are Terrifying Us"

I just sent a letter asking my Congressman to attest as to whether or not any these provisions of the several Health Care Reform bills are true. The list supposedly comes from Free Republic but I have not been able to verify that fact:

Page 16: States that if you have insurance at the time of the bill becoming law and change, you will be required to take a similar plan. If that is not available, you will be required to take the government option!

• Page 22: Mandates audits of all employers that self-insure!• Page 29: Admission: your health care will be rationed!

• Page 30: A government committee will decide what treatments and benefits you get (and, unlike an insurer, there will be no appeals process) This sounds particularly ominous. As the Federal Government, they can't be sued unless they allow it.

• Page 42: The "Health Choices Commissioner" will decide health benefits for you. You will have no choice. None.

• Page 50: All non-US citizens, illegal or not, will be provided with free healthcare services. So once again we create a magnet to bring in a bunch of illegals.

• Page 58: Every person will be issued a National ID Healthcard.

• Page 59: The federal government will have direct, real-time access to all individual bank accounts for electronic funds transfer. Communism at its finest. I produce funds, which are then not my own to dispose as I see fit, but the Governments. I didn't see anyone helping me earn it.

• Page 65: Taxpayers will subsidize all union retiree and community organizer health plans (example: SEIU, UAW and ACORN)

• Page 72: All private healthcare plans must conform to government rules to participate in a Healthcare Exchange.

• Page 84: All private healthcare plans must participate in the Healthcare Exchange (i.e., total government control of private plans)

• Page 91: Government mandates linguistic infrastructure for services; translation: illegal aliens

• Page 95: The Government will pay ACORN and Americorps to sign up individuals for Government-run Health Care plan.

• Page 102: Those eligible for Medicaid will be automatically enrolled: you have no choice in the matter.

• Page 124: No company can sue the government for price-fixing. No "judicial review" is permitted against the government monopoly. Put simply, private insurers will be crushed.

• Page 127: The AMA sold doctors out: the government will set wages.

• Page 145: An employer MUST auto-enroll employees into the government-run public plan. No alternatives.

• Page 126: Employers MUST pay healthcare bills for part-time employees AND their families.

• Page 149: Any employer with a payroll of $400K or more, who does not offer the public option, pays an 8% tax on payroll.

• Page 150: Any employer with a payroll of $250K-400K or more, who does not offer the public option, pays a 2 to 6% tax on payroll.
Peggy Noonan has a piece in the Wall Street Journal for Friday entitled 'You Are Terrifying Us'. The money quote:

The passions of the protesters, on the other hand, are not a surprise. They hired a man to represent them in Washington. They give him a big office, a huge staff and the power to tell people what to do. They give him a car and a driver, sometimes a security detail, and a special pin showing he’s a congressman. And all they ask in return is that he see to their interests and not terrify them too much. Really, that’s all people ask. Expectations are very low. What the protesters are saying is, “You are terrifying us.”

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

The Liberty Sphere: Democrats' Bare-Faced Lies on Town Hall Protests

The Liberty Sphere: Democrats' Bare-Faced Lies on Town Hall Protests

The Welshman has a great post over at the Columbia Conservative Examiner debunking the lie that the town hall meeting protesters are astroturf.

This should be a personal affront to every patriotic American who speaks out concerning the issues of the day. If you disagree vehemently with the Washington elite, you are automatically a kook who is to be written off and dismissed or you represent a special interest who has 'bought you off.'
Go read the whole thing.

Obama: A Modern Day Roman Plebeian Tyrant

Finally, for today, I offer you Obama: A Modern Day Roman Plebeian Tyrant by Frank S. Rosenbloom in today's American Thinker.

Read the whole thing. I need to add nothing.

Majority Support Thune Amendment

Say Uncle has a great post up citing the O'Leary Report, which is here. According to O'Leary, 52% of voters would oppose a Senator who voted to confirm Sonja Sotomayor to the Supreme Court. On the question of whether or not people with concealed carry licenses should be allowed to carry across state lines (the Thune Amendment) a whopping 83% agreed they should. The numbers were high in all demographics, with 86% if independents, 80% of Democrats, and 83% of people ages 18 to 49 years.

The numbers supporting the Thune Amendment surprised the h*** out of me. When I first became aware of the gun rights movement in the late 60s, gun control looked to be the wave of the future. Everyone I spoke to mouthed the common "wisdom" that fewer guns meant less crime. My point, that a law on the books making guns illegal would be ignored just like the laws that say you can't murder, fell on deaf ears. It is good to see that the writings of people like Stephan Holbrook, Dave Kopel, Alan Korwin, John Lott, as well as organizations like Gun Owners of America, Jews For the Preservation of Firearms Ownership, the Second Amendment Foundation and the Citizens Committee to Keep and Bear Arms are having an effect. More and more people are seeing the failure of gun control to deliver on its promises, and are saying "no more." Of course, it we slack of now, the battle will be lost. We have to keep reminding people, but I am optimistic that in the end we will succeed.

Sotomayor Support Even Split Among Public

Jillian Bandes has a piece up today on the upcoming Sotomayor vote on entitledKey Senator Thinks Sotomayor Vote Represents Crossroads. Bandes notes that the split among the general public was 49% in favor, 49% opposed. Given the hugely favorable treatment the nomination received in the MSM, this result is surprising. Senator Jeff Sessions of Alabama thinks the Republican questioning may have made the difference.

“I don’t believe that we should confirm anyone to the court who is not faithfully committed to follow the law whether they like it or not,” said Sen. Jeff Sessions, (R-Ala.), the ranking Republican on the Judiciary Committee. “If they feel empowered to avoid doing that when they don't like the law then they weaken all laws and they weaken the Constitution.”

Alan Korwin notes here that Sotomayor ignored 14 Supreme Court cases dealing with self defense in order to come out with her statement that she couldn't think of a single Supreme Court case involving self defense. This kind of selective reading of these cases puts the lie to her statements in support of stare decisis. Evidently, if she agrees with a precedent, it is there. If not, she seems unaware of it. I would certainly not trust such a person with my rights, and Senator Sessions is right to oppose her confirmation.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Single Payer Healthcare from Someone Who Should Know

The Smallest Minority has an e-mail posted from a student (American I think) living in the UK talking about the health care debate. It is both humorous and sad in ways I can't begin to put into words. Go read it.

The Endgame of the Left

So here is some doom and gloom for a gloomy day. It is overcast here, and the whole region has been under a sauna now for a week. Andrew Thomas has a piece up at the American Thinker today entitled The End Game of the Left. The opening paragraph:

Within the world of the far left, individuals have no value. Only the state matters. That is why the modern American statist devalues individual achievement and wealth. If, as in the socialist world of Marx, Engels, and Adolf Hitler (yes, Hitler, as I will explain later), God does not exist and humans have no souls, then the state determines the value of a human life. This philosophy leads to an ominous conclusion.
This is the same point, in different ways made by Goldberg in Liberal Fascism and by Levin in Liberty and Tyranny. Collectivists view the State as of maximum importance. To the degree that the individual buys into their rubbish, all is good, but if not, the individual is expendable. Contrast that with the Constitution, wherein the individual has protected rights, which, at least in theory, can not be trampled even by an overwhelming majority. Thomas again:

The statist philosophy, whether Islamic or otherwise, appears to condone and even embrace the concept of eliminating the members of the opposition by murdering them.
Or maybe just putting them in prison on trumped up charges, while letting miscreants go free because they were acting as the state wanted.

But after all, nothing like this could happen in America, right? Obama's building up of ACORN community organizers and the AmeriCorps civilian army with billions of dollars from the Stimulus couldn't be used against its own citizens, could it? His statement that "We've got to have a civilian national security force that's just as powerful, just as strong, just as well-funded (as the military)" doesn't scare you, does it? ...
We have not really seen yet the shape of the "Civilian National Security Force" but its outlines may already have been legislated with the porkulus. Time will tell.

The end game of the left is the abortion and eugenic elimination of the "undesirables", the euthanasia of the old and infirm, and the genocide of those who disagree. Its objective is the purity of socialist thought. And it is pure evil.