Friday, August 24, 2012

Russell A. Kirsch Continues to Deliver

In a great story in the process of going viral, a young blogger named Joel Runyon, who already had the power of positive thinking as shown at Impossible HQ, writes about how a chance encounter with Russell Kirsch led to An Unexpected Ass Kicking.

Joel's lessons learned are a must read as well.  Not much for me to add, except I'll surely be using this for a common frame of reference in future posts.  Until then:  Enjoy my "gift" to you for today!   I sure love giving gifts that someone else made and didn't cost me so much as a dime.  :)

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Brandon Raub - American Hero or Ticking Bomb?

The republican Mother is following the developing Brandon Raub story.  Her latest post Brandon Raub:  Crazy Like a Fox? gives us a most profound thought on what young Brandon may or may not realized he was doing when he predicted his detainment.  She says:

But getting back to Brandon and his comments, the one I found most interesting was the one made on August 14, a couple days before his arrest. "The Revolution will come for me. Men will be at my door soon to pick me up to lead it."
Adam Kokesh's interview with Brandon blows my mind, for he certainly sounds perfectly sane yet he's still being held after 72 hours on the opinion of someone who Ben Swann describes as a "special judge who is actually just a lawyer and part of what Virginia calls a Civil Commitment Board".

Now this is scary.  I've been looking at many other situations where Americans or permanent residents have been picked up and even convicted on skimpy evidence or coerced confessions.  They need to be tied to the escalating use of swat teams to prosecute the War on Drugs, which is spilling over into arrests of non-violent offenders in other areas such as student loan fraud and food co-ops.  There are so many more out there that I was planning on someday putting something together to better "connect the dots", but until then, here are a few.

  • Justice for Yassin Aref - Monster or unwitting innocent victim?
  • The Lackawanna Six - Many questions abound about how big of a threat they really were.  See also this.
  • Robert Perske - Advocate for justice for those with learning disabilities.
  • The Agitator - Radley Balko performs exhaustive investigative reporting on civil liberties and the criminal justice system.
  • Sultans of Swat - Can they seriously come for you?
That's enough to give a glimpse into the serious implications of possible effects behind our government's imposition of the Patriot Act, NDAA, and other excesses into the usurpation of our Constitutionally protected rights.  Of course, without anyone left actively supporting their oath to abiding by that Constitution anymore, you have no rights.

Update (28 Aug 12) - Brandon, who was taken into custody on Aug 16, was ordered release by Circuit Judge W.Allan Sharret on Aug 23.

Brandon discusses his ordeal with John Whitehead of the Rutherford Institute.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Who's Checking the Fact Checkers?

I'm kind of tired of saying this.  We've had to live with Clinton claiming a success in the budget battles going from an annual budget deficit to a surplus, then we lived with Newt Gingrich doing the same saying he was the reason for it. 

Here's the federal deficit chart from from the CBO that uses to tell us Clinton was a hero in  The Budget and Deficit Under Clinton:

Interesting indeed. added an update saying readers noted a USAToday article which stated, "The Clinton administration reported a surplus of $559 billion in its final four budget years. The audited numbers showed a deficit of $484 billion."  That's over a trillion dollar difference!!!  Oh my!!!

Even after looking into that USAToday article, Factcheck still claimed a surplus in the three of the last four years of Clinton budgets, "But even under accrual accounting, the annual reports showed surpluses of $69.2 billion in fiscal 1998, $76.9 billion in fiscal 1999, and $46 billion for fiscal year 2000." 

I don't know how they figured that out, for those three reports they were so kind to link to show increases in total federal debt for each of those years to be $155.9 billion, $126.9 billion, and $20.9 billion respectively even with Factcheck continuing to claim there were budget surpluses.  Yes, federal debt held by the public went down in each of those years so they were paying off some of their debts, but federal debt held in government accounts increased much more than the public held debt decreased.

Then we have this picture from Dueling Debt Deceptions from the very same fact checking organization claiming Clinton ran surpluses:

Ok, so then where did the $1.54 trillion increase in total federal debt come from during those very same Clinton years?   Perhaps these fact checkers should start better checking their own facts.

(Update 11 Sep 12) - Craig Steiner explains it much better than I did over at the Myth of the Clinton Surplus.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Welcome Back, Jim Traficant

For those who don't know him, Jim is a problem for the Feds who just won't go away even after they sent him away to serve 7 years in the prison system.  He was the thorn in the side of the Democrats as Ron Paul is to the Republicans.  He was scared then when they put him under indictment, but after having gone to prison, he no longer is and he's speaking out.  Welcome Back!

I saw a video of him giving a speech a Freedom Palooza in July 2011.  That speech is about 36 minutes long divided into 3 videos and it's well worth watching in its entirety.  In part 3, he recited this verse about a well-known incident that happened when he was in office which he claimed to have spoken on the House floor:

There was once a woman from Manassas
Who got tired of all the hassles
Claiming she'd been raped by her spouse
in her very own house
went in the kitchen to get a knife
fully prepared to take her husband's life
But realizing such a crime was too heinous
decided instead to cut off his "painless".
I don't know if this guy plays the piano
but from here on out, he'll sing like a soprano
But if he really, really did rape his wife
maybe, just maybe, he deserved that knife

After reciting it he says there was a much deeper message in there.  To me it is crystal clear that it is a stern warning to Congress to stop raping the American people for we, unimaginable to many of us ourselves because we're brainwashed to accept the repeated abuse, have many means available to help us emasculate the rapists. 

Jim details some of those ways when he talks about taxes and he has a plan.  Get rid of the IRS, repeal the 16th and 17th amendments, repeal the Federal Reserve Act, get rid of the Dept of Education, Energy, and the EPA.  Replace them all with a simple 25% sales tax, period.  What?!?  I won't explain it all here -- yet (even though I have been identifying parts of it and will continue to put it all together), for Jim details very well how it would work in his speech. 

Don't just shoot from the hip saying it won't work.  Watch the speech, then try to tell us why it won't work.

Freedom Palooza 2011, Traficant (1 of 3)
Freedom Palooza 2011, Traficant (2 of 3)
Freedom Palooza 2011, Traficant (3 of 3)

Sunday, August 12, 2012

S.679, Presidential Appointment Efficiency and Streamlining Act of 2011

Paul Ryan recently voted along with 95 other House Republicans on July 31st to pass S.679, Presidential Appointment Efficiency and Streamlining Act of 2011.  Word on the street that this action was requested and approved by Romney.  So it's no surprise his newly picked running mate voted for it.  Speculation is that Romney picked Ryan to shore up his image with conservatives.  Funny thing is that other conservatives Romney could have picked like Marco Rubio voted against it.  Another interesting bit of information is The Daily Caller claims their sources told them, "that there is concern in the ranks among conservatives opposed to the legislation that House leaders will bring the legislation up for a voice vote to avoid putting members on the record."  Hmmmm....

In one fell swoop, this Congress has divested itself of yet another authority and simultaneously strengthened the power of the President by alleviating itself from the drudgery and grind of confirming numerous agency appointments for positions that many different Congresses involved in the formation of those agencies and positions thought were important enough to demand their attention.  They did this because they have so many more important things to do in their daily duties enumerated in Article 1, section 8 that they can't get it all done and are extremely tired at the end of the day, not to mention that it will sure cut into their fact-finding junket time.

Now some will argue that this is the greatest thing Congress has yet accomplished to alleviate the overworked Senate of exhausting minutia to concentrate on more important matters. Indeed, that's what the wording of the bill states that it's meant to accomplish.  

There's certainly nothing wrong with this bill's Constitutionality, for indeed, Article 2, section two states, "...and he shall nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, Judges of the supreme Court, and all other Officers of the United States, whose Appointments are not herein otherwise provided for, and which shall be established by Law: but the Congress may by Law vest the Appointment of such inferior Officers, as they think proper, in the President alone, in the Courts of Law, or in the Heads of Departments."

If these positions are so unimportant, why can't the Senate just give them a quick thumbs up or down and move on?  If the positions are indeed that unimportant, why continue to have them to begin with?   Instead of delegating appointment with no need for Congressional confirmation, why not just do away with the positions and really streamline government, not to mention reduce expenditures of using taxpayer money to employ these unimportant people?

If they're so unimportant, then why bog down the President to make such appointments when the Constitution states they could vest appointment in the courts of law or heads of the departments where the positions exist as well?   Surely the President has more important things on his plate as well. 

No, there's a reason why they gave the President such unfettered authority rather than bumping it down to the department heads.  There's a reason why they were contemplating a voice vote to avoid record.  Perhaps we should consider ramifications of this in terms of similarities with the Enabling Act.

Last thought:  Slowly...  Slowly...

Update (23 Aug 12) - I've had a few remarks that I was being as disingenuous and deceitful as Harry Reid alleging Mitt Romney paid no income taxes for 10 years based on an anonymous phone call. 
I had seen the proof in a statement from a Representative, but was having such a hard time finding it when writing this because of the wonders that is known as facebook.  I still can't find it through my facebook account, but luckily it's available through a google search. 
In reponse to a query, Justin Amash (R-MI) replied:
Leadership informed GOP Reps that passage of the bill was a "Romney ask," so dozens of Reps flipped to "yes".
I've heard that this may effect several hundred appointments, but I'm too lazy atm to look it up.  This seems like nothing more than a huge giveaway to the President in providing him with many well-paying government jobs to favored donors to the campaign of whomever wins.  Republican or Democrat, it doesn't matter.  Business as usual inside the beltway.

It will be interesting to see who fills these appointments after this coming election...

Friday, August 10, 2012

Three Commitments to Freedom

Sometime someone comes along and says exactly what is on your mind or in your feelings that you may often have difficulty in expressing yourself in your own words.  Yet they may find a way do it in words that are nothing less than pure poetry. 

Such is the case for me with Robery Perry Hardison (1933-2009) aka Barefoot Bob.  Barefoot continues to pass on many wisdoms he gained in his journey through life on his website, Barefoots World.  Bob has captured quite a few of his valuable lessons learned and the whole site is worth meandering through.  I focus here on his most intriguing thoughts on "Three Commitments to Freedom". 

1)  Dedication to Freedom - Foundational Commandment:  "Harm no one, then do what thou wilt"

2)  Stay in the Now - "The Now Moment is a Multidimensional Vehicle that can take you anywhere and anywhen you wish to go."

3)  Follow the Energy - making our lives into a flow rather than a struggle.

Take the journey through Bob's mind and you may find yourself being happier for the experience.  I know I am.  :)

Social Contract

Very interesting discussion over at Tom Woods, "When Did I Sign This 'Social Contract'?"

More later.

Update (21 Aug 12) - My comment on that thread:

Tom, when you received what may be considered stolen goods in obtaining your property which was most likely unjustly expropriated from a number of others who held claim to it before you, you entered into the contract to protect your rights to that property.

NAP is simply a principle, not a contract. It may be a basis behind certain contracts, but no more or less so than a contract based on a principle of mutually assured destruction. It's merely mutually assured non-destruction. MAD vs MAN. :)

Libertarianism seems to fail to consider that rights are nothing more than a conceptual fiction. Nothing is inalienable, except through contract that all sides endeavor to uphold. Rights do not exist in nature, only constant struggle.