Conventional collectivist created authority is a deception in consciousness. You are your own Authority!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Glenn Beck is no Libertarian

“[T]his hurricane [Irene] is a blessing. It is a blessing. It is God reminding you — as was the [Virginia] earthquake last week — it’s God reminding you you’re not in control,” admonished extreme right wing radical radio talk show host, Glenn Beck to his drooling slack jawed listeners last week. “How many warnings do you think you’re going to get, and how many warnings do you deserve? This hurricane that is coming thorough the East Coast, for anyone who’s in the East Coast and has been listening to me say ‘Food storage!’ ‘Be prepared!’”

Deadly earthquakes and hurricanes are blessings from God according to this self anointed goof ball from far out fantasy land. He may claim to be, but Glenn Beck is definitely not a Libertarian. If he is, he surely makes the rest of us genuine Libertarians look awfully bad.

The Washington Post reports that Beck has long urged his rabid fans to stockpile food in their homes, including, among other perishable items,  as much as 300 pounds of wheat, white rice, corn and other grains, and 60 pounds of dry beans and other legumes, that could last for at least three months with a family of four, in anticipation of a global food disruption event. He claims that Irene should be construed as a divine warning for those who have ignored that advice.

Never mind that neither Irene nor the earthquake caused so much as a single day of food disruption. There has never been a three month global food disruption or even close in the entire history of civilization, much less in the 235 year history of the United States, and just about everywhere else in the world as well, except perhaps once every thousand years or so in the poorest most desolate regions of the planet, like Sub-Saharan Africa.

Any fool actually dumb enough to follow Beck’s advice would be throwing out and replacing hundreds of pounds of stale and spoiled food every six months or so just to be continually prepared for a most extremely unlikely event. And even if such a catastrophic event did occur, no one could hold on to such a large supply of food anyway against the mobs of hungry and desperate people who’d be roaming the countryside with their guns.

Yes, Glenn Beck is a certifiable public buffoon, but don’t take my word for it; listen to the words spoken from his own mouth: ''I'm a rodeo clown. It takes great skill,'' he admitted candidly in a New York Times interview on March 29, 2009. ''I say on the air all time, 'if you take what I say as gospel, you're an idiot.’''

In his 2003 book, “Real America,” Beck refers to himself as a borderline schizophrenic. ‘This guy is out of control. He’s insane,” opined one of his early work colleagues.

"[Beck is] Satan's mentally challenged younger brother." Said author Stephen King, writing in "Entertainment Weekly” on Feb 01, 2007

''I could give a flying crap about the political process ... We're an entertainment company,’’ Beck quipped during a Forbes interview in April of 2010.

''The most used phrase in my administration if I were to be President would be: 'What the hell you mean we're out of missiles?''' — Glenn Beck, January 2009.

May 17, 2005: “I’m thinking about killing Michael Moore, and I’m wondering if I could kill him myself, or if I would need to hire somebody to do it… No, I think I could. I think he could be looking me in the eye, you know, and I could just be choking the life out. Is this wrong?”

Oct. 20, 2010: ''I don't think we came from monkeys. I think that's ridiculous. I haven't seen a half-monkey, half-person yet.''

February 14, 2008: “Ugly people, if you’re a guy, you can get past it. I don’t think you can as an ugly woman -- if you’re an ugly woman, you’re probably a progressive as well.”

On February 6, 2011, Beck predicted that: “a new Muslim caliphate will collaborate with global communists to control the world.”

“[MSNBC is] the most anti-god network ever put on the air in the history of America… The world is about to be plunged into complete and utter darkness and despair. Quite honestly, famine will follow.” Glenn Beck -- March 21, 2011

Just after the 2011 Norway attacks, Beck compared the murdered and surviving members of the Norwegian Workers' Youth League to the Hitler Youth: "There was a shooting at a political camp which sounds a little like, you know, the Hitler Youth or whatever, you know what I mean. Who does a camp for kids that's all about politics? Disturbing."

“Glenn Beck was the king of dirty tricks,” said a rival Phoenix radio station program director about his outrageous conduct in 1987. In what may rank as one of the cruelest bits in the history of morning radio, Beck learned that a rival’s wife had a miscarriage a few days earlier. He called her live on the air and said: “We hear you had a miscarriage.” When she said: “Yes,” Beck proceeded to joke about how her “husband apparently can’t do anything right -- he can’t even have a baby.”

Beck admits that he once fired an employee for bringing him the wrong pen during a promotional event. According to former colleagues in Baltimore, Beck didn’t just fire people in fits of rage — he fired them slowly and publicly. “He used to take people to a bar and sit them down and just humiliate them in public. He was a sadist, the kind of guy who rips wings off of flies,” remembers a colleague.

Glenn Beck may be a lot of things, but he’s no Libertarian.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Political Creation Fantasy

According to a recent Gallup poll, fully 40% of Americans reject the science of biological evolution altogether, believing literally the Bible Book of Genesis story in which God created the Heavens and the earth, as well as all plants, animals and human beings in six days time, just as they all appear in their myriad forms today. Another 38% believe that the same God personally guides the evolution process.

Only 16% of Americans – barely 8% of Republicans -- accept the factual observations and conclusions of Charles Darwin, in his landmark book, On the Origin of Species, published in 1859, together with the many subsequent scientific discoveries by every other credible biologist and geneticist since then, all supporting with solid proofs the well established science of biological evolution by means of natural selection -- without any Divine or supernatural intervention. 

While the Democratic party has been held hostage by the left wing socialists for many years, the Republican party is likewise held hostage by the right wing religionists. The only party of reason are the Libertarians but few listen to them as we all know so well.

Republican candidates for president who voice their outright support for evolution do so at their extreme peril because it puts them “out of sync with [their] own party,” said Frank Newport, editor in chief of Gallup. "To very religious people, it’s a very sensitive issue," he added. He’s right.

Candidate, Jon Huntsman, who says he believes in evolution, has virtually no chance to win the Republican nomination. "You can’t win as the anti-science party, simply can’t win elections," he told Fox News. Maybe so, I sure hope so, but he surely can’t secure the Republican nomination without pandering slavishly to the religious right.

Many of the other GOP candidates are trying mightily to avoid any controversy and the resulting wrath of the right wing Bible thumpers by playing both sides of the issue in true obfuscating political form. “Both science and God are responsible,” they declare meekly with fingers crossed behind their backs.

Texas governor, Rick Perry, was caught dancing around the subject recently when a little New Hampshire boy, prompted by his mother, asked him how old the earth is. "I have no idea - it's pretty old. It goes back a long way - I'm not sure anyone knows really completely know how old it is," he answered. "I know your mom is asking about evolution," he added, seeking to have it both ways. "It's a theory that's out there and it's got some gaps in it. In Texas, we teach creationism and evolution because I feel you're smart enough to figure out which one is right."

If Perry is telling the truth, of course, then his state of Texas is violating the U.S. Constitution First Amendment Establishment Clause, and long held Supreme Court precedent, which prohibits the teaching of creationism in public schools. But Perry evidently knows what it takes to woo the early primary and caucus states voters of his party in Iowa and South Carolina and he’s not about to let a small matter like the Constitution stand in the way of political gain.

“What Perry has done by mentioning creationism is to send this little signal to fundamentalists that says, "I’m one of you,” political analyst Larry Sabato, director of the University of Virginia's Center for Politics, said. Next question: “Why doesn’t governor Perry believe in science?”

Few politicians today have the raw courage to stand up to the legions of religionists like Mayor Michael Bloomberg of New York City did recently when he insisted he will not reconsider his decision to exclude clergy from the ceremony marking 10 years since the Sept. 11 attack on the World Trade Center. To them, it was as though the mayor was committing an unforgivable sacrilege. They simply can’t stand to be left out of any government sponsored activity.

If a candidate for president like Perry, Michelle Bachmann, Rick Santorum, Sarah Palin, Herman Cain, or Newt Gingrich truly believes the Biblical creation story of Genesis literally, and rejects out of hand the science of biological evolution, they must believe also that our Earth is only 6,000 years old; that Earth existed before the Sun and the stars; that grass, herbs and fruit trees were growing before the first rain, and before the sun even began to shine; that humans lived side by side with the dinosaurs.

For my part, I really don’t care much about what fantasies people believe in until they decide they would like to govern my country as congressman, senator, or president of the United States.

I just don’t want to have to wonder whether their spiritual fantasy trumps reason and science in their conniving minds when it comes to making decisions affecting my liberty.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

What is Liberty?

American culture has metaphorically evolved over the last 235 years into a deep ocean of abstract socialist falsehoods pressing down upon individuals from all sides like a giant liquid vice. The cultural pressure clouds personal judgment, frustrates happiness, impedes freedom, and impairs well-being.

The Declaration of Independence and Constitution of the United States of America promise individual freedom and liberty, but those who have sworn an oath to uphold these principles have systematically dismantled them to the point where there is almost nothing left.

Where is the freedom? Where is the liberty?

Liberty is the right to be left alone.

It has been said by a wise philosopher that as a man serves himself he serves society. That is liberty. That is freedom. That is the highest moral purpose for human beings; it affirms human nature because it is morality based upon reason, logic, and knowledge of the contextual realities of existence.

President John F. Kennedy is perhaps most famously remembered for his clarion call for self-sacrifice: “And so my fellow Americans: Ask not what your country can do for you. Ask what you can do for your country.” But America was not founded to become some form of societal ant colony. We’re not supposed to be a nation of sacrificial slaves.

We the people do not belong to this nation. The reality is precisely the opposite -- this nation belongs to the people. So it is perfectly moral and proper to demand that our nation fulfill its purpose and obligation to secure our fundamental constitutional rights to life, liberty, and individual pursuit of happiness.

The government Authority has slowly but successfully curtailed much of our promised liberty, and is poised to curtail even more as it constantly demands new personal sacrifices from each of us in an imaginary socialist crusade for the “greater good.”

George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and the rest of the founders who fought the Revolutionary War against the tyranny of the British monarchy, were they alive today, would undoubtedly be sickened and appalled by what America has become.

Americans do not enjoy liberty today – we have merely regulated license. The Authority no longer permits true individual liberty. Our government concept of liberty has now become license -- that which the Authority permits -- the ‘liberty’ of slaves.

The most fundamental element of liberty is individual self ownership of body and mind. Without that at a minimum, there is no liberty. The liberty of every individual should therefore be inviolate except only as it interferes wrongfully with the liberty of another.

The concept of liberty as set forth in the Declaration of Independence includes the logical assumption – the self evident truth -- that it is moral to be free. If it is moral to be free, then it is moral to enjoy and enhance your own individual life, to use liberty for yourself, and to pursue your own happiness.

Liberty encompasses the individual right to choose your own culture: those ideas, customs, and traditions you freely choose to accept, and with which to pursue your own life. But the rabid proponents of unbridled government Authority are not content with controlling their own lives. They demand control over yours; and they want to regulate your culture too.

American children are forced to attend government schools or their equivalent for thirteen of their most formative years where their private individual consciousness is indoctrinated and permeated with irrational and conflicting socialist Authority. This is how innocent compliant little kids are taught what to think instead of how to think so that they can grow up to be good government self-sacrificing slaves.

These government schools are where our children are coerced into mindlessly reciting the Pledge of Allegiance, a government loyalty oath to a “nation under God,” which is an anathema to liberty. What is possibly more conceptually un-American, and repugnant to the original ideals of the Declaration of Independence and Constitution of the United States of America, than a government sponsored and mandated loyalty oath? It negates everything America represents, and is tantamount to a religious declaration against individual freedom.

Over the last century, Americans have been ordered by the government Authority to compile and submit a detailed report about ourselves every year disclosing the intimate minutia of our private affairs; giving a full account of names, addresses, contact information, marital status, household members, employment, investments, and income from all sources, bank accounts, spending habits, and on and on. This alone would have been inconceivable to the minds of the founding fathers.

These onerous and tyrannical income tax laws are the primary government conceived mechanism by which all its subjects are coerced into the annual self-sacrifice of huge portions of their income and property to the “thing.” Americans are forced to sacrifice more of the hard earned fruits of their labor than the medieval serfs suffered to pay the lords of their miserable lives during the dark ages.

American citizens are still subject at any time for conscription into mindless wars of imperialistic aggression and expected thereby to sacrifice their individual lives for the benefit of the Authority. Thousands upon thousands of young lives have been sacrificed in this manner since the Civil War.

Innocent conduct, such as gambling and recreational drug use, which involves no potential harm to others, is routinely prohibited by the American government Authority. Private sexuality, for another example, is regulated, restricted, and sacrificed altogether until well after puberty and to a large extent even after one becomes a seasoned adult.

So right now in the United States of America, the culturally accepted government Authority has substantial control over our minds, our bodies, our lives, our property, and even our simple pleasures. 

Most American people no longer want to be free. They have not learned to be free. Freedom is far too much a responsibility for them. They much prefer to belong. They crave leaders. They idolize celebrities. They need direction. They want it for themselves and the want to force it upon everyone else.

Americans today are satisfied with whatever license their Authority sees fit to grant them.

Sadly, that is far from the concept of liberty upon which our nation was conceived.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

U.S. Government Balloons; Private Sector Shrinks

The federal government of the United States is growing by leaps and bounds under the Obama administration while the private sector economy has imploded according to a recent report in Investors Business Daily, and the former is primarily responsible for the latter.

Government regulatory agencies now employ more agents and workers than McDonald's, Ford, Disney and Boeing combined, and public sector employment is booming; up by 13% since 2008, while private sector jobs are down by well over 5%, and the unemployment rate remains steady at over 9%. Regulatory agency budgets have grown by 16%, or $54 billion, during Obama’s presidency, while the private economy remains stagnant.

New rules and regulations are likewise multiplying like rabbits on steroids, costing taxpayers billions and billions of dollars every year. The number of pages in the Federal Register, where new regulations are published, increased 18% in 2010 alone, and more than 4,200 new rules and regulations are still awaiting publication, not even counting all the rules from some agencies, so the total will actually be far more.

The effects of all these new rules and regulations in terms of costs of compliance is catastrophic on private business – well over $1.75 trillion every year and climbing rapidly according to a 2010 study by the Small Business Administration.

Meanwhile, the Obama administration will spend as much as $510 million just in the next three years to build or overhaul biofuel plants and refineries. The state of California will receive $179 million just to fill in portions of a high-speed rail system between Los Angeles and San Francisco.

The President’s stimulus package together with annual spending bills have already provided $10.1 billion for his national high speed rail project, while the total cost is estimated to be upwards of $43 billion.

Our federal government is still wildly spending taxpayer dollars on dubious projects, and at the same time killing the private sector golden goose with unnecessary rules and regulations; all the while operating on massive budget deficits and more than $14 trillion in debt, with conservative estimates at more than $25 trillion over the next decade, even if spending is drastically cut.

The terrible day of financial reckoning for America draws nigh.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Condoms & Kids in New York City

It’s official. Eleven-year-old boys and girls in the Big Apple’s public school system will soon be forced to learn how to put on a condom as part of a comprehensive sex education curriculum described by the district education authorities as “long overdue.”

That’s right; New York City schools are interested in meddling into the potential sex lives of your children; to “teach them what they need to know about sex” while they remain a captive audience in their sixth-grade through high school classrooms; and the officials are not going to take “no” for an answer. This will be mandatory.

From my own limited personal experience in the matter I discovered that putting on a condom is several steps easier than tying my shoe laces, a skill I had mastered completely with the help of my parents by the time I was four-years-old.

Donning a pair of gloves is slightly more difficult than rolling on a condom, mainly because one must learn how to don two gloves, a left one and a right one, as opposed to only one condom. Yes, even getting dressed in the morning and ready for school is substantially more difficult for a kid to learn than how to use a condom, a skill any self-respecting imbecile can accomplish in 5 minutes tops.

“I believe the school system has an important role to play with regard to educating our children about sex and the potential consequences of engaging in risky behavior,” Dennis Walcott, Chancellor of NYC Schools, sanctimoniously proclaimed.

Obviously, it’s not really about how to use a condom to avoid sexually transmitted diseases; it’s about indoctrinating kids against gratuitous sex in much the same way they are indoctrinated against recreational drug use.

So NYC children as young as 11 years old will participate in discussions on a variety of topics ranging from the risks of unprotected sex to the appropriate age for sexual activity whether they or their parents like it or not.

Note that none of these topics will be about how to enjoy sex, pleasing a sexual partner or anything even close. Mutual masturbation techniques, the ancient art of cunnilingus, fellatio, Kama Sutra sexual positions, and the many and varied delights of erotica and pornography will most certainly and emphatically not be discussed.

That’s because the city school district sex police authorities are not interested in sharing useful knowledge about the positive aspects of sexual activity with students; they only want to teach the negative points; to discourage sexual activities altogether if possible, and failing that, to scare the living daylights out of children by over emphasizing how “risky” and “dangerous” this perfectly normal human activity is.

Of course, it will all be to no avail; the kids will learn what they want to know about sex anyway the way all kids have done since time immemorial; from their parents, peers, older siblings, popular culture, and experimenting on their own. That is as it should be in a free society. The government has no business “educating” kids about sex, aside from basic health information topics.

According to the latest figures from the U.S. Census Bureau, the state of New York spent $18,126 in education costs per student in the year 2009, a sum which is above the national average by far. Yet 38 percent of New York schools fell short of the educational goals set under federal education laws -- far below the national average.

Instead of teaching kids how to put on a condom, they should be teaching them how to read. Then they would have the skills necessary to decipher the instructions on the package to find out on their own how to use condoms. 

Thursday, August 18, 2011

American Thought Crimes

Federal, state and local police goons, a dozen of them strong, with badges flashing and guns drawn, swooped down upon the humble home of a 91 year-old California woman in an early morning raid to to seize her sewing machine and a few plastic bags.

Her crime: sewing ordinary household plastic bags into hoods and offering them for sale on the Internet as part of a kit that can be used with helium to commit suicide. Some guy from Oregon bought one of her homemade kits and used it to asphyxiate himself.

The legalized thugs also seized the old lady’s computer and all of her correspondence with Final Exit Network, a nationwide group of 3,000 members, which offers advice and support to people seeking to end their lives.

Oregon lawmakers want to make a criminal out of anyone from anywhere who would send such a kit to Oregonians. They want people like that old lady brought from California to Oregon to face felony charges for “knowingly selling or transferring a substance or object that is capable of causing death to another person for the purpose of helping them commit suicide.”

So if I hand some fool from Oregon a plastic garbage bag, (or any number of other common household items), and tell him he can go home and kill himself with it if he likes, I’m guilty of a felony under this law, and subject to extradition to Oregon for punishment as a felon.

Elsewhere, a man was convicted of a 15 year felony violation of  Minnesota's “aiding suicide” law for posing as a female nurse on the Internet and advising a depressed English man and Canadian woman how to commit suicide.

The judge ruled that such advice amounts to "lethal advocacy," which is not protected by First Amendment freedom of speech, and that a victims’ predisposition to commit suicide is not a valid defense.

So if I tell some fool to go jump off a cliff if he wants to kill himself, and he does just that, I’m guilty of a 15 year felony – aiding suicide by lethal advocacy -- in Minnesota.

If the 91 year-old lady were selling the same kit with instructions about how to use it to clean fish tanks, there would be no “crime,” even if some fool used it to commit suicide. If the man posing as a nurse advised someone how to commit suicide, and they didn’t heed the advice, or tried it and failed, there would be no “crime.”

So, by any logical analysis, these are not actual crimes; these are imaginary crimes -- “thought crimes.”  The perpetrator of this kind of “crime” is guilty of no more than planting a “bad thought” into another persons mind.

It’s perfectly alright to sell a rope to someone, but if it comes with instructions on how to use it for hanging, and someone commits suicide with it, that’s a “crime.” It’s perfectly alright to sell a book revealing painless methods for committing suicide, but if someone uses an idea in it to kill himself, the author has committed a crime --"lethal advocacy."

A nation that punishes people for “thought crimes” is worse than an Orwellian nightmare.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Jobs Jabber

Politicians like to jabber on endlessly about their ability to “create jobs,” usually by spending taxpayer money, meddling with commerce and the economy in the process. But jobs are not things. Jobs are not material objects of value. Jobs are merely to-do’s; what must be done to create values.

On a micro personal level, you don’t spend money for a job. That’s thinking backward. Would you pay money for the privilege of doing your housework or mowing your lawn? It’s not the job you need or want, but the value created by performing the job. You do the job to create a value. You mow your lawn to maintain your home. You do a job or pay someone else to do it to obtain the desired value.

So the object is to create values, not jobs. Values are what people want. The desire for values results in demand. On a macro national level then, it is also the demand for values which makes jobs necessary. Government is clueless when it comes to stimulating demand for values that people want.

Jobs alone are not valuable, unless they are viewed as entitlements of employment. That is how politicians view jobs. To a politician, a job for which they can take credit for “creating” is valuable whether or not it satisfies a demand for what people want. Government “creates” lots of “jobs” which result in little or no values because they don’t satisfy any demand for what people want.

"Our urgent mission has to be getting this economy growing faster and creating jobs," declared President Obama. He says he wants Congress to take measures which will “stimulate job growth.” But he’s already spent trillions of taxpayer dollars on “stimulus programs” and corporate bailouts which have not resulted in any economic growth and have had no effect on unemployment. 

His idea of creating jobs calls for spending huge sums of taxpayer money on a high-speed intercity rail initiative; construction of a national rail system; eliminating bureaucratic hassles for entrepreneurs, making trade deals with other countries, and giving loans to companies that employ construction workers. But it is just this kind of government meddling and out of control spending which caused the economy to crash in the first place.

People don’t want an expensive new rail system; there never should have been bureaucratic hassles for entrepreneurs; government has no business making trade deals or restrictions on trade with other countries, and certainly no business making loans to private companies that can’t otherwise obtain financing.

On top of that, the president is calling on Congress to extend the payroll tax credit, extend unemployment benefits, and fund new technology and construction jobs. In short he wants to continue spending taxpayer money as if jobs can be bought.

"We need to create a self-sustaining cycle where people are spending and companies are hiring," declared the president, as if government spending is the key to a stable economy – as if jobs can be created in a government laboratory -- as if the nation can spend its way back to prosperity.

Democrats in the House of Representatives are actually proposing a "make it in America" jobs agenda involving a national manufacturing strategy, investments in clean energy technology, education and infrastructure.

They think that government can strategize the entire economy and create millions of “jobs” -- all without any regard to whether their meddling will result in satisfying demand for what people want. Digging holes and filling them in is the politician’s idea of jobs.

The bottom line is that all this jobs jabber is leading the nation in the opposite direction it needs to go. Government should simply let the free markets do their magic; let the people demand of private enterprise what they want; do that, and the jobs will follow necessarily as a matter of course.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Liberty & Justice for Sale

The worst sort of criminal employs the power of public trust to victimize.

Corruption of the public trust is far more injurious to society than ordinary crimes of passion, violence, greed, or even lust. It involves a cold, calculated, deliberate, and premeditated state of mind to use the powers entrusted to them by the people as a means to systematically violate their fellow human beings. 

There are few acts more despicable than a public officer taking bribes. In other words: putting fairness and justice up for sale. These are a special breed of crook because their opportunity to victimize others is exclusive and comes with a license. They are entrusted by a sworn oath with the power and solemn duty to do justice but they pervert both for personal gain.

No individuals are entrusted with more power over the lives and liberty of others than judges presiding over the people’s courts of law. Judges have a unique and exclusive opportunity to manufacture justice for sale. Some of them are willing to victimize even children, depriving them of their rights and liberty for the sake of lining their pockets with dollars.

Michael Conahan, and Mark Ciavarella, Jr., two former judges presiding over the Luzerne County Pennsylvania juvenile court system, were convicted recently of what prosecutors called a 'kids for cash' racketeering scheme that sent juvenile offenders to privately run detention facilities in return for kickbacks.

Together, they accepted $2.8 million in kickbacks from the owner and builder of two privately-run juvenile detention facilities in return for closing the county’s own juvenile detention center and a guarantee of sending children appearing in court before them to the new private detention center.

Ciavarella often sentenced young first-time offenders to detention and had a reputation for cutting constitutional corners in the process. Many of the kids who appeared in his courtroom, for example, were not represented by a lawyer, and were never advised of their right to counsel. Upwards of 60 percent of these unrepresented children were sentenced to time in a juvenile detention facility, i.e. imprisoned against their will.

All the while, both judges were receiving secret under-the-table payments from the owner of the private detention centers that profited from the large number of kids sent to them. These judges were literally using their judicial office for the purpose of selling young children down the river – depriving them of their liberty for filthy lucre.

Needless to say, in this: one of the worst judicial scandals in American history, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ordered that all adjudications, an estimated 4,000 cases, involving children appearing before judge Ciavarella be vacated and their records expunged. Judge Ciavarella was sentenced to 28 years in prison and ordered to pay $1.17 million in restitution. Judge Conahan pleaded guilty last year and is awaiting sentencing.

That’s getting off easy. I don’t believe in the death penalty for many reasons, but if any criminal deserves it, these guys surely do. When an ordinary criminal commits a single kidnapping, the death penalty might be authorized by law. These criminal judges committed judicial kidnappings thousands of times over.

They deserve a life sentence, in my opinion as a lawyer and officer of the court, for every abusive detention they ordered, to be served consecutively. They should never enjoy another day of freedom.

No punishment is too severe for a judge of a court of law, entrusted by the public with dispensing justice, putting liberty and justice up for sale.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Living by the Sword

Those who live by the sword will likely die by the sword a wise old saying goes. It was proved once again in Afghanistan last week when a U.S. military Chinook helicopter went down killing 30 elite American special operations soldiers.  

The U.S. military, and most of the U.S. media are still dancing and dodging around the facts and real cause behind the disaster; even though the Taliban took credit immediately. Not so the Bangkok Post, and other foreign media, which tell the nasty truth:

This was, in the opinion of officials in President Hamid Karzai's own U.S. backed government, a retaliation attack for the killing of Osama Bin Laden.

A Taliban commander, named Qari Tahir, with the assistance of four Pakistani nationals, reportedly set a trap to lure U.S. forces to a specific spot, and when they arrived there, all gung-ho and ready to roll, shot them down like so many ducks in a barrel. This was no lucky strike. It was planned and executed just like our military missions are planned and it worked all the same.

The American command received bogus “intelligence” that a big meeting was taking place in the Taliban dominated Sayd Abad district of Wardak Afghanistan. Access to this place could be gained only by one route through a narrow valley. The Taliban knew which route the helicopter would have to take to get there. The enemy waited on both sides of the valley for it to come, and when it did, they shot it to pieces with modern weaponry.

"Their loss is a stark reminder of the risks that our men and women in uniform take every single day on behalf of their country," said President Obama as he paid his respects to the dead at Dover Air Force Base where their remains were shipped home. "Day after day, night after night, they carry out missions like this in the face of enemy fire and grave danger," he added.

He’s right about the terrible risks, dangers, and the frequency with which they are faced, but wrong if he thinks these soldier’s unnecessary deaths were of any benefit to their country. They, like all the deceased foreign soldiers in Afghanistan before them, died for nothing. I sympathize with their families but that won’t change reality.

Americans, just like the Russians during the 1980’s, and every other invading army since ancient times, has fallen into a nasty Afghan trap by underestimating the dark, savage, and crafty powers that be among the tribal peoples of the rugged terrestrial and cultural landscape of Afghanistan.

Against the most state of the art and sophisticated military force ever arrayed against a poorly trained, ill-equipped, and disadvantaged enemy, they are fighting to the last man in their homeland for their way of life while we fight for nothing. Just as with Vietnam, they are losing most of the battles but winning the war. We kill 100 with our drones and our smart bombs while 500 more pop up for the fight.  

Now the news is that two of the Afghan insurgents responsible for the copter shoot-up were tracked down in an “exhaustive manhunt” and finally killed by a U.S. air strike. So claims U.S. Army Gen. John Allen. Maybe so; maybe they killed a few of them, but they aren’t the responsible ones reported by the foreign media. My guess is that the bad guys got away, and even if they didn’t, there are a lot more where they came from.

We’re certainly not going to get the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, from our own embarrassed government in this sad affair. In any case, the violence will continue until we Americans leave, and then it will be back to business as usual with the Taliban in Afghanistan.

All in a decade’s worth of futility for those who live by the sword.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Hello Third World

Move over United States of America; you are no longer the world’s bastion of growth, wealth, and financial stability you once were only a decade ago.

The U.S. Dollar is trading against other world currencies near its lowest level in history. The value of our money has collapsed. The Nasdaq Composite of growth and technology stocks is trading at less than half its value as of April of 2000. Growth in the once vibrant financial and technology markets is stagnant. The U.S. is no longer the best place in the world to do big business.

America, since the eight year failed presidency of George W. Bush, is a nation in rapid decline. President Obama has only hastened the fall. Congress and the president are in a deer in the headlights state of denial while the markets crash and the debt and deficit pits deepen. Government spending and borrowing is increasing at untenable rates.

Unemployment levels remain constantly high, and the housing market collapse, starting in 2006, is no where near to recovery. Government mortgage monster, Fannie Mae, for example, after reporting a $5.2 billion second quarter 2011 loss, is asking for $5.1 billion more from taxpayers as it continues to try making up for bad loans before 2009 during the housing bubble. That brings the total to $104 billion in government taxpayer bailouts since the U.S. Treasury Department seized control of it in 2008.

And now, for the first time ever, the nation’s former AAA rating for financial creditworthiness has been downgraded. Our once sterling world credit score has dropped. Singapore today has a better credit rating than the U.S.A. Canada, our neighbor to the North, has cleaned up its financial act nicely, and now also boasts a higher rating for debt creditworthiness than we do. So does Sweden, Australia, Norway, Denmark, Holland, Switzerland, and Germany.

What do all these nations share in common aside from demonstrating better financial responsibility policy on behalf of their citizens than the United States? None of them have been over-feeding an out of control morbidly obese federal government and its bloated military industrial complex child since the end of WWII. Their citizens enjoy a high standard of living and just as much security as U.S. citizens.

United States military spending since George W. Bush took office now totals almost as much as the total military spending by the rest of the world’s nations combined. This is in spite of the fact that the cold war has long ended, the nuclear arms race subsided, and we face no substantial national security threats from any other nations.

Military spending rose substantially during every year of the Bush presidency, from just over $400 billion annually in 2001 to $700 in 2009, a leap of 70% in less than a decade. The U.S. spends hundreds of billions more for “defense” now than at any time during the cold war with Russia, China, and communist Eastern Europe.

If military spending were cut in half starting right now, the U.S. would still be spending about the same amount annually as it did during the last year of Bill Clinton’s presidency. This could be accomplished without compromising our national security. We would still be spending about two thirds of what all other countries combined spend on defense.

Grossly disproportionate military spending is the hallmark of a third world nation. Uncontrollable debt and deficits are indicative of a third world nation. Stagnant markets, rampant unemployment, under performing currencies, and second rate credit ratings are the norm of a third world nation.  

United States of America – if you don’t get your act together: say hello to the third world.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Establishment Clause Gets No Respect

Hard core Christian religionists in America never miss an opportunity to use the people’s government to infuse their dogma into every important public issue or secular event, all the while asserting that God or Jesus Christ has something to do with it. They think the United States of America is their own Christian nation.

Naturally, this infuriates a minority of non-Christians who simply want to keep religion and government separate as provided by the First Amendment Establishment Clause of the Constitution. In short, there are many who don’t like the possibility of being governed by Christianity at the expense of liberty and  constitutional right to a secular government.

A secular government doesn’t threaten or conflict with a Christian’s constitutional right to free expression of religion. The government’s constitutional obligation is merely to remain neutral in matters of religion, i.e., to stay out of it; not take sides. Government is public. Religion is private. Government in America is not supposed to promote religion – any religion – including Christianity.

The September 11, 2001, terrorist attack on the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York City had nothing to do with Christianity. The Trade Center was not a Christian church. The business activity going on inside those buildings on 9/11 was entirely secular. Never mind that, insist the hard core Christians; they want to use the 9/11 event to have government promote their religion anyway.

Within a few days after the disaster, some Christians “discovered” amid the mountain of twisted and tangled rubble two intersecting steel I-beams which appeared to them as a 17-foot Christian cross, the foremost symbol of their religion. They removed it to St. Peter's Church where it stood for almost 10 years. They prayed to it; ceremonially blessed it; and eventually deified it as the "World Trade Center Cross."

Now, it’s not exactly as though finding this “cross” of intersecting I-beams was a miracle or anything close to it. There is nothing spiritual or sacred about intersecting I-beams. The entire structure of both towers was built with a skeleton of thousands of intersecting steel I-beams – thousands of steel crosses – so this particular one really represents nothing more than a large piece of the wreckage.

One has to imagine it as a Christian cross; otherwise, it’s just another hunk of junk. Maybe I’m stupid, but I don’t get the connection. Surely these Christians don’t believe that Jesus Christ had something to do with the attack and then left this “cross” in the rubble as a reminder. Surely, they don’t believe that this “cross” represents God’s doing. And surely it has no religious significance at all unless the significance is manufactured.

Anyway, all well and good so far. The church is a perfect place for it. Christian crosses belong in private settings such as homes and churches. But last week, with the full blessing and cooperation of the United States government, they moved this now sacred Christian “cross” back to the disaster site to become a massive permanent exhibit and religious icon promoting Christianity at the National September 11th Memorial and Museum.

In the interest of fairness, I suppose, the museum is going to exhibit also a Star of David cut from WTC steel along with a Bible fused to a piece of steel that someone found at the site. Again, I don’t get any connection between these items and the significance of the 9/11 terror attack. Would a first edition copy of Moby Dick fused to a piece of steel have any similar relevance?

Oh, they’ll no doubt rationalize their religious symbols in a government museum as a memorial to all the Christians and Jews who died in the attack. Of course they will, but remember, there were a number of innocent Muslims who died there too.

Can you just imagine the national uproar if Islamic religious icons – 17 feet tall WTC cut steel Islamic objects -- were displayed in a memorial museum at ground zero? No; the poor innocent Muslims, who had nothing to do with the attack, are having enough trouble building an Islamic outreach center three city blocks away.

In other similar news, a Texas lawmaker is calling for a congressional investigation of the Houston National Cemetery after he “went undercover” and determined that cemetery officials are preventing Christian prayers at the funerals of military veterans.

“The Obama administration continues to try to prevent the word God from being used at the funerals of our heroes,” whined Texas Rep. John Culberson. He claims he witnessed volunteer members of the honor guard from the Veterans of Foreign Wars being prohibited by the Veterans Administration from using any references to God.

Well, yeah, but in fact, however, the Christian religious group was only advised that they must first obtain permission from the deceased veteran’s family before performing Christian religious rituals at their private funerals. "Out of respect for the families, VA’s policy exists to prevent anyone from disrespecting or interfering with a veteran’s private committal service,” explained a VA official.

How about that? The hard core Christians want to hijack the funerals of every deceased military war veteran as an opportunity to spread their gospel at a government sponsored service, whether the family wants it or not; whether the deceased was religious or not, Christian or not; and if anyone objects, they cry out for a congressional investigation.

Meanwhile, Texas Gov. Rick Perry, using the platform of his high office, is calling upon every governor in the United States to come together for a national day of fasting and prayer to his Christian God. The federal judiciary held recently that no average John Q. Citizen has standing to complain. By that reasoning, Congress could establish by law the National Evangelical Church of Jesus Christ, and no one would have standing to complain.

I realize that all this seemingly innocuous mixing of the Christian religion with American government seems petty and insignificant to the average American, especially to the majority of Christian Americans who welcome a government God on currency and in pledges – just so long as that God is Christian.

But these small constitutional violations can add up one atop the other until we find ourselves one day living in a Christian theocracy. There are several candidates running for president right now who would love that.

Liberty is at stake.

Hard core religionists have no respect for the Establishment Clause.