• AMERICA: The Story of Us. Outstanding! Even Leftists Engage in Patriotic Swoon..

    I was watching the first installment of the History Channel’s excellent series: “AMERICA: The Story of Us,” tonight. They had a good blend of what might be considered fairly mainstream politically right and left celebrities such as Newt Gingrich and Tom Brokaw.

    The thing that struck me about those from the left, those who tend to support the big government of President Obama, including the President, who gave series-opening comments, was their, what I thought were, heartfelt and inspiring words. It made me wonder about the apparent disconnect between their advocacy for big socialistic government and their, what seemed to be, almost subconscious visceral love of patriotic American liberty. The obvious problem: the two concepts are mutually exclusive. Liberty does not play will with big government.

    It seems some on the left, like Mr. Brokaw, seem to love liberty and patriotic sacrifice, when it comes from the blur of history rather than from the clear living and breathing of today. In the special Tom Brokaw actually said something to the effect, “Americans are not a people who turn the other cheek when we’re attacked.” He smiled wryly. I love this sentiment, but I’m not sure this fits with Mr. Brokaw’s, or other left-leaners view of American foreign, or for that matter domestic, policy today, if only….

  • From Kelo to Seattle, to Auburn, Supreme Court was wrong.

    we go again, yet another government private property grab thanks to the now infamous, and atrocious, 2005 Supreme Court decision known as Kelo v New London [Connecticut]. Today the targets have Auburn, New York threatening eminent domain against two holdout property owners.

    So, what hospital, jail, or freeway ramp does the Auburn community need that makes it so important for politicians and bureaucrats to take private property away, by force if necessary? Well, it’s not for any of those originally intended purposes; those Auburn big-wigs essentially want to confiscate land from those private citizens in order to transfer it to other private citizens they deem more worthy to own it, because of a plan to build a resort, which will ostensibly bring in jobs and tax revenues.

    In the Kelo case, the Supreme Court ruled [in one of the biggest errors the court has ever made, in my opinion] a local government may seize by eminent domain private property and transfer it, not for direct government use, but to other private parties for indirect community “benefit.”

    The kick in the teeth from the Kelo decision was that the entity at the heart of this land grab, the private party benefitting in the transaction, once having prevailed, once having had the victim property owners forced from their land and their homes moved or destroyed, bailed on their end of the deal. The property taken by eminent domain sits an idle weed infested vacant lot.

    And the damage isn’t limited to Kelo in Connecticut. Seattle also experienced a similar boondoggle when it seized land by eminent domain for a community rail project, while at least directly public-related in this instance, also failed to materialize, but for the people who lost property, their nightmare certainly materialized.

    The Supreme Court exists to interpret law so that it protects individual liberty. Sometimes they miss the mark, and not by inches, but as in this case, by a mile. How can the court miss so badly? In this case I believe in the end they failed to use the proper motivation. They used benefit to the community in the collectivist sense over benefit to the community in the individualist sense. But Time Magazine did declare we’re all Socialists now, right? So…

    Eminent domain was never intended to allow government to seize private property from one individual and then transfer it to another individual. The sad thing is that every American knows this, but there are some who obfuscate, and wallow in legal minutia, in order to equivocate a bad ruling, and even sadder still, some of them wear black robes.

  • Federal Government and Corporal Punishment

    Is there anything the federal government won’t stick its regulating nose into? It seems the moment some politico catches the scent of “do-something” in the air, knees jerk, and we hear calls for yet more government interference into American’s lives.

    It’s not even about whether or not we should address particular issues, it’s about whether or not the federal government has the Constitutional authority to do so. Specifically, I’m talking about a news report I heard this morning where a Texas community has reinstituted corporal punishment in schools. They reported behavior problems have dropped significantly even though only one student to date has been paddled.

    Positive results aside, I understand corporal punishment is arguable. Personally, I wouldn’t be comfortable with most other people using physical discipline on my child, but having come up through Catholic School in the 1960s, I also know a well-deserved whack or two can send a behavior modifying chill through a classroom.

    Having said that, this argument belongs, as the Tenth Amendment states: “…that powers not granted to the national government nor prohibited to the states by the constitution of the United States are reserved to the states or the people,” within the states or a person’s home.

    The federal government continues to stretch its tentacles far beyond its authority. Someone needs to remind our federal politicians that the feds didn’t create the states, rather, the states created a federal government for the express purpose of protecting the states and its citizen’s individual liberties, not oppressing them.

  • One Author’s Thrill!

    Everyone can probably imagine how it would feel to be a musician, singer, or songwriter and hear the radio playing your music while you’re driving down the street. The CD’s been released, which was great, but right now you know that at this very moment people are enjoying music or lyrics you created.

    I felt a little like this today. I like to write when I can at a coffee house in Mountlake Terrace, WA called Urban City Coffee. The baristas are great and it has a warm and inviting atmosphere.

    Today, I set up where I normally do, hooked up my computer, set down my coffee, and began to write. Sitting in the central sitting area were a young man and woman. He was working on his laptop while she read. I glanced at her book and something looked familiar. I then realized she was reading one of my books.

    I was thrilled. I’ve seen my books on store shelves, which is another thrill in it’s own right for an author, but this is the first time I’ve encountered a person actually reading my book, “in the wild.”

    To add to the excitement, at one point she said to her companion, “This is a good book. Listen to this,” and then she read him a portion. I couldn’t hear what she’d read, but they both laughed (that’s okay, it’s a humorous book), and appeared to enjoy it.

    I stayed for about an hour and a half or so, they left about five minutes before I did, and were already there when I arrived. She sat reading my book for at least an hour and a half straight. I don’t know who that reader was, she had no idea her book’s author was sitting a few feet away, but she made my day.

  • Why be Civil to Progressives Taking Away my Rights?

    I’ve brought this up before—and I’ll probably bring it up again, but I’ve heard more discussion of it lately, so….

    I hear this call for civility in politics, and although many of these calls come from leftist politicians who are about as hypocritical as they come, and I think Maxine Waters takes the hypocrite cake in this arena. The point is, why is civility so important anyway? It seems the left only wants civility when they’re the targets because of their oppressive actions.

    If someone wants to tax me 2% instead of 1%, we have a different point of view. If someone wants the prison in my town, but I’m opposed, that’s a legitimate difference of opinion. Even if someone supported the invasion of Iraq, and I did not, that’s still within the political disagreement realm.

    However, it’s dramatically different when someone wants to confiscate my property for redistribution and to alienate my unalienable rights. How can I look a these people, which now includes not only my U.S. Representative and both my Senators, but my President too?

    When progressives attempt to change my country fundamentally, and show no apparent respect for our U.S. Constitution or American traditions, how can I look at these people as simply people on the other side of the political aisle?

    Here’s my political litmus test: If conservative-libertarians, Tea Party-types get their political way, progressives still get to pursue their individual happiness unmolested. However, if progressives get their way, I have no right to my property, which is confiscated at ever-increasing rates and redistributed, and for the first time in American history my federal government mandates that I buy a product, health insurance, I may not want, and may not even need (in the case of the wealthy). And if I fail to purchase the government fines me, and if I fail to pay the fine I suppose the government would garnish my wages, or I’d end up in jail.

    When our Founders acknowledged an individual’s God-given right to pursue happiness, I believe they intended the pursuit to be on our own individual terms, not that of the government.

  • Placate the Right; Wink and Nod to the Left

       

     

     

     

    So, now President Obama, after ramming Healthcare down America’s throat, has suddenly turned his campaign promises to the eco-maniacs on their heads, has had a fossil fuel epiphany, and decided to allow oil drilling off the east coast. Things that make you go: Hmmmmm?

     

    What is expected now? Does the Obama administration expect America’s conservatives to bow down, because of the President’s ostensible Clintonian shift to the right? Well, they might expect it, thinking as they do how dumb the average American is, especially on the political right.

     

    However, Americans are smart enough to figure out that, just like every other time when reasonable folks attempt to drill for oil in America or build a nuclear power plant, America’s green thugs skitter out of the woodwork like cockroaches to sue the government and keep them bungled up in court for years, and, of course, putting any drilling off for the duration.

     

    Now, I’m just a lowly conservative-libertarian street cop and I’ve thought of this. Anyone out there think our brilliant, Harvard-educated attorney president, surrounded by some of the most adept, albeit diabolical, political strategists the left has to offer, didn’t think of that too?

     

    The President gets to make this hollow gesture and then is able to complain when conservatives attack the move as such, while at the same time he gets to wink and nod at the eco-fools as they skip to court to file their papers. Well, I’m not sure the President realizes just how politically savvy the public is becoming; but I’m sure he’ll realize it come November.